Little Joys Ch.78: Coming home and the joy of being alive

This post is part of an ongoing challenge to share a little joy I have found each day of this year, and perhaps for the rest of my life. I hope you enjoy it!

March 27th, 2020


When I first began this journey of writing down a little joy I found each day, one of the most important factors was actually, without fail, doing it daily. The concept was similar to a meditation practice, only the focus was to inspire myself through this mindful remembrance of delightful things, no matter how small, that I experienced each day. This was largely inspired by Ross Gays book of small delights, which I thoroughly enjoyed. Sometimes, especially as I was traveling, life would get in the way and I would not post for a day or two, and I would simply make it up by compiling the two or three days into one post. But I find myself having not written a post for 8 days, and that begs the question of whether I should do another list, and I think it is best to just let that go. It is less important to me to be perfect in this tracking then it is to take joy in the act itself of writing about joy, and not be stressing about perfection.

So to celebrate 8 days of absence, I will write quite a long post today.

I find myself now, after nearly 10 months on the road traveling, back in Canada. It was a long and exhausting journey, a journey that was filled with many, many little joys, but also lots of irritations. One of the greatest things we can learn with travel is what we really need in life to be content, and I realize that although I love to travel and will do so again, that I much prefer routine and staying in one spot then running all over non stop. travel vlogs which rely on people watching them to make money paint a rosy picture of travel that is only partially true and ignores all the stress and hardship of being in new locations, especially when traveling for significant periods of time. There are, of course, tons of benefits and wonders to travel. The people you meet, the beautiful places you get to see, the things you learn about cultures around the world, these all help to shift and expand your perceptions and become, hopefully, a better human being who is able to appreciate the simple beauty of life.

I consider myself blessed to have had the opportunity to travel multiple times, and this journey has led me to foray into online work, which will allow me to travel even more freely in the future. That same online work will allow me to weather this economic upheaval brought on by the corona virus much better than many people, and I am very grateful that I have gotten this opportunity to put my writing skills to use that will keep me afloat.

After 3 days, 3 planes, and 3 cities, totaling over 20 hours of flight time, I found myself touching down safely in Toronto airport. I was dead tired, and had not managed to sleep in over 30 hours, I then had to take a rental car and, isolating myself as much as possible, drive 6 hours to Montreal where my parents live, and simply park my car at 3 in the morning in my Fathers driveway, and try to get an hour or two of sleep until I could get some supplies from him and go self-isolate up at a cottage in the north for two weeks. On arriving there, I was delighted to be surrounded by beautiful nature, and a large cottage to keep myself from going stir crazy after such a large transition from freedom in Asia and sun to the cold of winter and isolation in Canada. Unfortunately, due to unfortunate circumstances, I was forced to leave the cottage the very next day, and now find myself in an airbnb here in the city, which although not as beautiful or as liberating as the cottage out in nature was, is still nice and I am grateful to have a comfortable place to wait out my two week sentence.

There is joy mixed into all that mess of a few days, and I am functioning a little better today after so little sleep.

Although coming home is very difficult, especially with corona rearing its head, I am very grateful to be safe and symptom free, with a family that took a lot of time to help me transition more easily here, and friends who are all welcoming me back. I tend to be a very pessimistic person in general, but I can honestly say that this trip has taught me to appreciate life and all the little things greatly, and I hope to continue to share my perceptions with everyone and bring some more inspiration to the world through my writing and work.

Thanks to all who read and listen to my ramblings.

As always, stay healthy and let your geek freak fly.

Little Joys Ch.75-76-77: Sex, Corona virus, community effort and fear control

This post is part of an ongoing challenge to share a little joy I have found each day of this year, and perhaps for the rest of my life. I hope you enjoy it!

March 16th, 2020

One of the more amusing facets of being in Thailand is that sex, although still quite closeted between Thai people themselves, is so openly marketed and sold to foreigners. I found myself enjoying a hilarious moment while I myself was getting a massage. Another foreigner had come in with a masseuse and we could clearly here them bargaining on what sexual favors would be exchanged for what price and whether another masseuse would be brought in as well. My therapist and I found the whole thing quite funny, and instead of a zen finish to my session, I instead found myself randomly giggling with a stranger as we both attempted to remain serious in the face of an obvious sexual exchange happening nearby us. There are small joys everywhere these days.

March 17th, 2020

Fear is everywhere these days, and so I find myself comforted by the fact that I remain quite unaffected. Perhaps people will find this statement callous, but I take it as a sign that my travels have instilled in me a greater understanding of what it means to truly be afraid, and of all the really horrifying things that are out there in the world. A big part of our problem in the western world is that we have become so protected from most harms that we overreact to even the smallest of fears in a magnified way. Perhaps it is strange to say, but I take a small quiet joy in my subconscious being under control enough that it does not give in to fear and merely does what it can to stay safe and move on with life.

March 18th, 2020

For many of us, the only real spur to working together with our communities is when tragedy strikes. Natural disasters, sickness, they bring us together and motivate us to work as a team. I happened to witness entire streets being hosed down by trucks, and then the entire community was out there with soap, broom and mop trying to scrub down entire roads and sidewalks as a preventative measure to the spread of corona virus. I am not sure how much scrubbing down the streets will prevent the spread, as it is mainly humans who are doing the spreading, but the positive effects from just coming together and working to help out has many other health improving side effects. It is always a pleasure to see people do what they can to help themselves and others.

As always, stay healthy and let your geek freak fly.

GeeksnBarbells Podcast Ep.6: What does healthy mean to you?

What does being healthy mean to you? How should we think about it in the big picture of our lives? What are your goals? Delve into the topic with me.

At GeeksnBarbells, we delve into the creative world and how healthy living and mindset can maximize our potential, as well as just geeking out on gaming, anime, books, art, and the world of fitness and nutrition.

Audio Only:


Staying healthy when stressful situations arise

There will always be periods of time in your life where your training will take a backseat to some kind of hectic situation that has arisen. It may be something as mundane as a work project, or traveling, or something more serious such as a sickness or death in the family.

At the end of the day what matters is that you do the best you can with what you have. Trying to make big gains in strength, weight loss, mass gain, or any other big energy consuming task while also dealing with a big amount of stress is not ideal. At that point going into a recovery and maintenance mode is the best plan.

Figure out the minimum amount of training you can do to keep yourself healthy, maintain your muscle mass or weight loss/gain, and do everything you can to keep the status quo. If 30 minutes twice a week is all you can manage, well what is the best use of those 30 minutes?

If you do not have time to make good quality home cooked meals, well then what foods can you stock up on that are quick and easy to consume that are also as nutrient dense and will create the least havoc and fat gain?

There is always a better way to deal with a situation. The worse a situation becomes then the more you need to takeĀ  better care of yourself so that you will be able to handle whatever gets thrown at you.

Ask for help, reach out to friends and family, or even online, where many people have probably gone through what you have and are more than willing to support you.

Remember that you have what it takes to make any kind of difficult situation better, and that people are out there to help. Don’t be a lone wolf, or let yourself succumb to misery. Be kind to yourself, but remember that taking good care of yourself even in the worst case scenarios is a kindness to yourself.

As always, stay healthy and let your geek freak fly.

Little Joys Ch.72-73-74: Surviving planes,sunlight, and human Kindness.

This post is part of an ongoing challenge to share a little joy I have found each day of this year, and perhaps for the rest of my life. I hope you enjoy it!

March 13th, 2020

Taking joy in all the crazy things human do is a must. We have all forgotten how crazy it is that we fly through the air in metal bird like contraptions. After taking over a dozen over the last 9 months, I am well acquainted with how amazing the feat is. But after having taken so many, I am more joyful of being able to say that I have touched down safely after so many flights. As amazing as it is when a plane first lifts off the ground and soars through the sky, it is infinitely more gratifying when those wheels touch down and you realize you safely made it to your destination.

March 14th, 2020

Human beings are some of the most violent, vicious creatures this planet has to offer. But we are also one of the most kind. As I walked the beach here in Phuket, I noticed a group of people around something. As I came closer, I realized a giant jellyfish had washed up on shore. Many people were taking turns to bring water over to it, attempting in the only way they knew how to keep it alive, watering it down and hoping to figure out a way to safely put it back into the water. I am not sure what ended up happening, but it is a comfort to know that we can be kind to even the most strangest of creatures.

March 15th, 2020

Amidst all the fear mongering over the past few years, the sun has gotten a bad rap. People think it causes a whole host of negative ailments to our systems, even though most of the well done science shows that sunlight has hundreds of positive effects on our bodies. Even if we ignore what it is doing to us internally, I think most of us can agree that feeling the suns rays upon our skin, letting the warmth of it seep into us, is blissful. There is a reason we all flock to the beach, hoping to let the ocean and sun intermingle and heal our weary minds and souls. The sun is our Father, just as the Earth is our Mother, and we need them both if we are to survive here.

As always, stay healthy and let your geek freak fly.