Sedated

To paraphrase Hozier “somewhere for these death and guns, we are young and free and feel none of it, adding shadows to the walls of the cave; we are nursing on a poison”.

I want to run away and never come back… for selfish and selfless reasons. Selfless reason number one: Be the change

There are so many in physical pain and we need to forget about ourselves and actually help. I don’t mean to just donate money towards an organization, I mean change the way we live. For those who have restrictions and can’t physically leave the country this means making conscious choices to buy local, support fair trade and conserve clean drinking water.

I am currently sitting on my bed, in my home, where I have immediate access to heat, clean drinking water, and food. I have more than most, and take it for granted. Every person should have these things. At the very least every person should have water. This is not a new concept – people have been saying this for years, but I am inspired and pissed off, so I am writing about it. Which brings me to reason two: live simply, so others can simply live (Gandhi).

In live in Canada, where we have been hard-wired to believe that we always need more… but we are “distracting and sedating ourselves” from real issues. We spend our time thinking about ourselves (and I do too! don’t get me wrong, I am just as bad) but I am tired of being this way. How can I live in a world where people are suffering and I just go about my life as if I don’t know starvation and disease related to malnutrition kill thousands every single day.

I need to seriously evaluate my life and find out how I can best utilize my time, because while I feel that I am doing my part in Victoria, it just isn’t enough.

Some related documentaries include: The End of Poverty?, Food Inc, Food Matters, Blue Gold, Tableland… a quick google search found me this list: http://www.filmsforaction.org/articles/films_for_action_presents_the_top_100_documentaries_inspiring_the_shift_to_a_sustainable_paradigm/

Just be conscious of what organizations, corporations etc that you are supporting! What are there ethical values and do they match yours?

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A Year of Great Writing: Our Favorite Blogs in 2014

A Year of Great Writing: Our Favorite Blogs in 2014

For creative minds to be inspired

The Daily Post

We discover excellent blogs, both old and new, every single day. Multiply this by 365: the amount of superb writing we’ve been collectively exposed to this past year becomes staggering. Still, even in a year bursting with talent and exciting voices, some blogs spoke to us with particular power. Here are the ones we kept returning to in 2014.

cheri lucasCheri Lucas Rowlands

This year, I’ve followed Arabic Literature more closely — Cairo-based writer M. Lynx Qualey’s site focused on the literary and arts scenes across Egypt, Palestine, Syria, Iraq, and more. I’ve discovered so much new writing and poetry from around the world. Likewise, it’s fun to explore Sesquiotica, James Harbeck’s blog for all things words. I love the concept behind his Word Tasting Notes — word lovers, do dive in and taste.

I also return to many long-time favorites, again and again. The most notable one is Brevity, the blog…

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Forever Young

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Age-Old Questions.”

 

 

 

A number is just a number until you start to associate it with other things. Being a teenager is paired with immaturity. I  remember when I was in high school and no one would take me seriously. I thought ‘what is the point of even speaking!?’, it was infuriating. Now, I am 21, have graduated from University and have started a meaningful job working with Autistic children and I finally start to get treated like an adult (most of the time). I have always felt older than my age because of the things associated with people in their 30’s, 40’s, 50’s… That’s the other thing, every 21-year-old is looked at the same way initially, and judged by a stranger. Until you get to know someone you are just judging them based on age and other factors: appearance, health, smell… So to answer the “age-old question”, yes, an age is just an age. Some “younger” people have old souls and vice versa. I hope I will never feel I have to hide my age, or say “I feel 30!” when I am 50, because I hope I exude that energy instead.

España , mi primer amor verdadero

It started in high school. I fell in love for the first time; and it only progressed throughout college and beyond my years at University. I fell in love with Spanish at the age of 15 and have been enamored ever since.

Because of Spanish, I have been to multiple Spanish-speaking countries and have travelled on school Spanish trips such as ‘Costa Rica’ (2009) and  ‘France and Spain’ (2010). However, the biggest trip I have taken, was my trip to España (Spain), for the second time, in 2013.

I fell in love with Spain in 2010 and I knew I had to return, so I worked part-time while being a full-time student and saved all my money to travel a month in Spain… by myself! Everyone thought I was crazy, that I would be lonely, or get mugged. In reality, over the course of the month I did get homesick and I had some lonely moments but I also learned a lot about myself. I learned that I was independent, strong-willed, and that I could be happy with my own company. I think that travelling alone, whether it be a an hour, a day, a weekend or a whole month is an important expedition that everyone should embark upon. Having said that, although I did spend the majority of that month travelling around alone, I had arranged to meet my former International Students, Carlos and Carmen (brother and sister), who lived in Madrid, Spain.

When I arrived in Madrid, Carlos was at the airport to pick me up (well sort of). This was the first test of my independence on the trip because when I landed and received my luggage in Madrid, Carlos was nowhere to be found. Since we had not specifically stated where we would meet after I had landed, and I was unfamiliar with the airport, I had a choice – I could stay where I was, feeling quite like a lost child looking for her mum, or I could be brave and travel towards the exit (where I assumed Carlos would be entering from). So, with trepidation, I ventured towards the exit of the airport. Luckily, I was paying attention because Carlos, in his hurry to get to me almost flew right by me without noticing! I yelled his name to get his attention, and with dos besos (two kisses), one on each cheek which is a Spanish custom, began my first ever independent trip. I say “independent trip” because it was the first time I had saved up all of my own money, to travel independent of any school group, basketball team, or family trip.

While I was in Spain, I travelled to many different places – Galicia, in the northwest region, was my all-time favourite place in the world (so far). To explain that trip will require a whole different blog post. So, I will stick to Madrid for now. I had the great fortune to know people who lived in Spain, and I used their home as a “home base” to return to after my frequent day to week-long excursions to different places around Spain. I realize this is not an option for most, so I have made a list of a few great hostels that I stayed in all around Spain.

HOSTELS

*to be inserted in February 2015 (we are moving and all my travel journals are in boxes! sorry)

TRAVEL JOURNAL

But, that brings me to another great tip! Keep a travel journal!!! I have been writing since I was old enough to read and write, but travel journaling is so important because you won’t remember the small details otherwise. It does not have to be a physical journal book, but keep a record either through your blog, e-mail, word doc etc. I prefer paper and pen because there is no way to delete or misplace the file, it feels more concrete to me, but that is personal preference. If you only remember one thing from this blog post – let it be to record your trip! Trust me, as time goes by, you will appreciate having written your travels down.

KEEP AN OPEN MIND AND BE ADVENTUROUS

Be open to new people and new opportunities! The key to a great trip, and the best way to enjoy yourself the most, is to keep an open mind and be open to meeting new people, trying new food, and exploring new cultures. Also, do not ever be afraid to listen to your gut and take risks! In 10, 20, 30 years you want to say “I did that!”, not “I planned on it”, “I wanted to but…”. There are always reasons to say “no”, but, if you want to do something badly enough, you will make sacrifices. And, perhaps those “sacrifices” will not feel like sacrifices, when you are experiencing all the world has to offer you.

Anyone who has travelled will tell you it is nearly impossible to convey the impact that exploring different cultures and regions has on the traveller. However, I guarantee that anyone who loves travelling like I do, will tell you that it is worth more than anything you own. I am considering travelling the world, with no current plan for what I hope to accomplish while doing it, but knowing that in travelling alone I will have accomplished something; this is how much I love to travel, and believe in the power that travelling has on someone.

 

Until next time,

 

WANDERLUSTJESS

A Year of New Beginnings – An Intro to Me

“Change is the only constant” – Heraclitus

This year I am making a conscious effort to be confident and courageous with my life choices. That is why, after graduating University in August 2014, after 21 years of constant schooling, I decided to do what I wanted to do and not what I was expected to do. To fuel my passion for health and wellness I acquired a job at a yoga studio. I just starting working in a field that matters (to me), working with Autistic children. And, perhaps most importantly, in order to feed my constant desire to travel, I decided to plan a trip to Europe with my high school friend for 73 days in April 2015.

This blog will be dedicated to my passion for travelling. I got the travel bug early on, in 2007, after visiting Havana, Cuba. From there I could not get enough of the different cultures, music, religion etc that came with travelling to foreign countries. In the summer of 2013 I took my very first solo trip to Spain and it was the best decision I had ever made. People thought I was crazy to go alone but I did and it was wonderful. I plan to travel my whole life and have recently been researching how to become a travel blogger (we will see if that is something I decide to do down the road…). But for now, I will plan my Euro 2015 trip and post info from my past trips to help aspiring or current travellers 🙂

That’s all for now!

Until next time,

Wanderlustjess