Who is my brother? Who is my neighbour? Who is my friend?

Mixed feelings about this last minute trip to England. as regards friends, family and even strangers.

Sometimes we connect, get help and encouragement from the people we least expect.

A friend of my late mum and myself that I have not seen for decades insisted that I stay to eat a meal with them despite me just popping in unexpectedly.

My cousin exhausted from a hard days work still took the effort with her equally tired daughter to pop by on the bus to her mums where i was staying just to greet me.

Complete strangers connected, smiled and danced with me last night and changed an otherwise boring lonely evening into a great night out.

An old school mate from 38 years ago has just spontaneously decided to come and fetch me from the train station on my journey back down to London for breakfast.

The moral of this story? Who is my brother? Who is my neighbour? Who is my friend? Well its not necessarily the initial meaning of those words.

Even seemingly small and insignificant acts of kindness and attention can have a very big, powerful impact.

Make time for people because we might not get a second opportunity in this uncertain world and life of ours.

True love and its chemistry, who can really explain it?

I actually know quite a few women in real life that I think like me. In some ways they are ideal dating candidates as regards character, personality, attractiveness, age, geographical location, family situation, independant financial standing and our shared passions and interest. I really enjoy my friendship with them and engaging with them in our shared passions and activity. But despite all of this I don’t feel that special chemical attraction towards them.

Those few women that I do feel attracted to are everything but ideal candidates for me. Its either their age, where they live, their family situation, their real interests and passions. This is even without mentioning their character and personality. The “love at first sight” relationship that I experience in my infactuation with some of them soon wears off once I got to know them a little better and see their true character and how they interacted ……..or how they did not interact with me.

Why do so many of us have this tendency to “fall in love” with the wrong type of person. The type of person that is not really suited to us. The type of person that instead of uplifting us into becoming better persons actually break us down and bring out the very worst in us?

Why do so many of us always keep searching for this mystery, magical person on the other side of the planet when there is an ideal but simple match literally next door, or in the same village or town or at least in the same country, just waiting for us to ask them.

Yes maybe love is a bit overrated sometimes and maybe we should not always let it have the complete influence on our final decision in who we decide to share the following years of our lives with.

But for those of you who did find someone through the “instant chemistry of love” that turned both of you into better persons, that made you both a complete unit in soul, body and mind, treasure what you have and never let it go, because you have found something truly rare, unique and remarkable.

True love and its chemistry who can really explain it?

CSSF Rovinj, 2016 My experience.

What an amazing festival and I only experienced a fraction of it. The last four days, and I did not enroll in any of the workshops, or any of the sunset dance cruises. But what I did experience , the early evening town square open party with Top Cuban Salsa band Maykel Blanco, the afternoon beach parties, the main Sunday afternoon Pool party and the late evening parties in the Old Tobacco Factory complex just blew my mind!
I started dancing again from scratch about two and half years ago learning primarily Cuban Style Salsa, and a limited amount of bachata. So I still felt like a beginner. The more I learn the more I realise how little I actually know.
I did have the privilege of dancing with many highly experienced dancers and they seemed to elevate my own dance level. They finished of perfectly every move that I initiated. The interaction with the dancers was amazing and despite the fact that they were clearly far more advanced dancers than myself they were still humble, smiling hugging and squeezing my hands full of gratitude as we departed, mind blowing. (I finally realised later that they were probably applying stuff they had just learned in one of the many amazing workshops), (Next year I promise I will attend a few workshops……no really!)
By the last two days I felt as if I was dancing in another dimension. It was not that I was executing more complicated figures but it was how I was dancing. I really felt as if I was starting to transmit my feelings and emotions into my dancing, and that especially the experienced dancers seem to capture my feelings and convey them in their moves. A truly amazing experience.
Also just watching others dance was a real pleasure. With no disrepect to the top artist that performed at this festival I seemed to have more pleasure watching the spontaneous and improvised dancing that was taking place before my eyes every evening and into the early hours of the following morning where the “die hards” still kept on dancing. This was no fixed choreographic sequence of moves. I was watching a unique dance sequence taking place that will never be executed in that exact same way again. A combination of the leader and follower intepreting the music and rhythm of a particular song into their dance combined with how they feel at that given moment.

This is the stuff that is not given so much attention when the festival is being promoted or discussed but for me this is what this festival is about;

“People coming together from all over the world to connect, to hear and enjoy latin and afro Brazilian (Kizomba) music and express themselves in the beautiful art form of dance.”

Thank you so much for making this possible for us.

.

Back in Jamaica first Impressions

Back in Jamaica visiting my parents my first impressions.

Dirt cheap rally driving route taxis, very expensive charter taxis driving at slightly slower speeds, hotel receptionist without internet access because their owners don’t trust them, clear salt sea water fish infested white sand beaches, plastic bottles, tourist, churches, poor Jamaicans street sellers trying to sell cheap souvenirs, rich foreign owned gift shops employing equally poor Jamaicans selling expensive beach towels, the Knutsford Express Coach service, amazing scenary, Chinese supermakets, more churches, sun sinking into the sea sceneries, potholes, Kingdom Halls of Jehovahs Witnesses, mansions, brick build huts, cochroaches, brightly coloured drinking bars, sunshine, goats, every possible model of Toyoto, Church of Pentecost, Palm trees, cheap Chinese clothes and household store, sunrises, mosquitos, Seven day adventis church, wasps, super luxery 4 x 4 jeeps, old bangers, gorgeous woman biting on the tongues so that they don’t show any type of emotion and avoiding any type of eye contact as they walk slowly past you, Top of the range Honda darkened glass SUV, the night echos of reggae music blasting thru the rural valley countryside with just three people actually attending the party in the local bar, very big loud loudspeakers, very very big loud speakers, the senior citizen rastaman, school uniform dressed children, bread fruit, the machete carrying freelance agricultural labourer, half built concrete mansions with flat concrete iron rod sticking out roofs, coconuts, roof top standing black plastiek round 100 gallon water tanks, loose dogs, petty crime, beggars, serious murderous crime, wind mills, more churches, tourist, beautiful beaches, more potholes, poverty, riches, quiteness, the ghettos, completely iron fenced off remote controlled gated villas with matching German shepherd gaurd dogs, noise, potwa, singing, friendly people, sunshine, yes lots and lots of clear blue sky sunshine.

Our Inner Beauty

Our initial attraction to another human being is primarily  based  on what we see and hear in them but after a while as you get to know that person their inner soul or character comes to the foreground. It finally reaches the point that when you look at that person you see their inner soul or character first and their looks second.
At this point no matter how attractive they are with their perfect figure, six pack, make up and hairstyle if they have a bad character then that is what you see. Their inner character has become so prominant that it has made them ugly.
Needless to say this leads us to the opposite phenomen, a good person remains beautiful no matter what has become of their physical body in the eyes of those who know and love them.
This world puts so much attention on our outward appearance, physical beauty and looks that it actually makes people become unattractive from within.

We begin to realise that the more perfect someone looks then more than likely the more vain and shallow they have become in their thinking and character. They have been mislead into thinking that having a perfect body will make them a better person.

However there is nothing wrong with physical beauty in itself.  We were made to appreciate and enjoy these physical attributes and if we can improve our looks in a natural way that is something positive. It should never however be at the cost of losing our inner soul.
In fact our primary goal should be working on our inner beauty. We should constanly be looking at our internal mirror so that we can become and remain people with good beautiful characters.

But we also have to accept and realise that this internal beauty will only be seen and admired by people who have like minded visual capabilities and values.

No Messenger No Life!!

image

I recently created a new public group called; “The FB Messenger Resistance Group” for a small group of people on this planet that hate being dictated too by large powerful commercial entities like Facebook. I thought I was virtually alone in being so angry with Mr Zuckerberg with forcing me to install the FB messenger app on my smartphone when the mobile browser version worked adequately enough for my personal needs.

I thought to myself there goes my eccentric character again. I don’t want this app running constantly in the background consuming large amounts of my phones working memory and processor capabilities while it is collecting data based om my other smartphone activity so that it can sell that information to third party commercial partners so that they in turn can send me personally tuned ads. I know that by agreeing to use facebook you are also giving them permission to do just that, but I would still like to have some control when that actually does happen instead of FB deciding that for me. I want the ability to easily disconnect myself from facebook completly without having to uninstall the app everytime. My previous smartphone was already struggling with all the apps that I choose to use on it and periodically I had to uninstall a few of them so that my phone would function properly again in such a way that I could make a normal phone call.

However the various times that Facebook automatically redirected me to the Android Google Play Store to install messenger I discovered that I was not alone in my convictions. As I read the various user review comments from the official version of Messenger I started finding other like minded individuals. Maybe they are just as eccentric as me, but what the hell I was not alone.

But maybe the problem is not Mr FB, maybe the problem lies with ourselves. We have allowed ourselves to be gradually controlled by another Mr Big Brother entity. We should start reorganising our means of connecting, communicating and our social activities in such a way that we will not be fully dependant on social media to have a life. Because even if we succumb to using Facebook and Messenger this highly complex but equally vulnerable and unstable app can and will fail periodically for some reason or the other what can inevitably lead to a situation quoted in the title of this article;

“No Messenger no life!”

Believe it or not but people did have a very normal active social life long before Mr Zuckerberg graduated from university.

Life begins at fifty

I could never imagine myself making such a statement thirty years ago. My impression of someone of that age is quite different from how I feel about myself right now.

I also acknowledge that this feeling will not apply to everyone. I think that there are so many factors involved. Things like health, marital status, whether or not you have had children, the amount of children, there age or ages, grandchildren, parants, grandparents employment situation, financial situation, geographical situation, cultuur etc etc.

Marital status is also a big issue in life. If you have been married or in a relationship or relationships for large portions of your life ending up alone can be quite a challenge. Loneliness and getting older can give the impression that life is coming to an end. The chances of finding an appropriate, compatible partner are greatly reduced due to the fact that we have become more set in our ways and an increasingly diminishing time factor.

Many of us fear growing old and worry about all the things we won’t be able to do anymore, losing our youthful looks and beauty and this is true to a certain extent. We won’t be able to do everything we did before and we can’t avoid grey hairs and getting bald.

But we have finally gained a wealth of life experience, knowledge and wisdom. We learned this through decades of mistakes and successes and I would not give that up for the whole world.

This in turn has helped us to view and live life differently because we have learned to appreciate the things that our more important than money, wealth and fame. Things like family, love, friends, health, faith etc. This inevitably leads to a more contented, calmer and happier life.

Because of our age and circumstances a whole new world of opportunities and challenges open up to us giving our lives new goals and meaning. The pain of loneliness can also be greatly reduced when we can use this wealth to help others which in turn can create new found friendships.

The writing of this very short and simple blog is also an example of a new found opportunity.

So if we can concentrate on what we can do from this point onwards instead of complaining about what we can’t do anymore then at least for some of us can truly say “life begins at fifty”.

wiseguy2016

A film about Depression

This is a blog by Libba Bray.

After reading this blog it reminded me of how I felt after watching the 1997 version of the film “The Titanic” and the 2009 film “Avater”.

Glued to my seat, mouth still wide open watching the credits rolling down while everyone else was exiting the cinema hall.

I was just so impressed with how they depicted the hughness of that ship as it slowly sunk into the ocean. I had fallen in love with that beautifully depicted colour intensive world of Pandora and so disgusted with this invading army of mercenaries destroying everything in there path.

Yes this is how well I feel Libba Bray has written her blog on this horrible disease of depression.
This one of those must read blogs.

http://kindnessblog.com/2016/01/22/miles-and-miles-of-no-mans-land-by-libba-bray/

wiseguy2016

A Bloggers Paradise

A Bloggers Paradise

A newly bought Samsung Neo S5 smartphone, a WordPress app from Google Play and an incredible Digicel Island wide 4g network coverage with a 2 Gb, 30 day data packet for approximately 2250j$

I am a complete blogging novice (… did I just swear at myself??)

So please forgive my spelling mistakes, grammer, format of my blogs and the look and feel of my WordPress account.

Just trying to pick up something that I really enjoyed doing over 40 years ago in my good old school days, in junior and secondary school in the United Kingdom.

Anyway I have no university degrees, no high profile job experience. I did not start a company from scratch, or do any voluntary work in a third world country.

I just have a couple of O-levels and CSEs, and a working trade City and Guilds Diploma, with over 30 years working experience in that trade.

I am basically a fully employ but retired as a full time family man, divorced with two grown up kids. What I mean by retired family man is all the stuff you usaully have to start doing when your the first parent that comes back home from work. I call this the second shift.

Anyway with this new found freedom I took a recent trip to the land of my roots. On holiday in Jamaica or should I say visiting my parents, (there is a subtle difference).

Despite having to do the odd jobs in and around my Mums house as best as I could (if you know anything about Jamaican parents you will understand my dillema). I am finally winding down (took about three weeks though) to the point that I feel I don’t have to do anything. (The fact that my mother was not present that day has nothing to do with it!) (Please tell my kids to contact missing persons Jamaica if I don’t show up for work next month)

I don’t have to use every living second of daylight hours to visit and see every hook and cranny of this beautiful Island. I don’t have to visit every living relative on the Island from second cousins to my uncles aunties sister in laws nephews brothers son.

I can just sit here in the hills of inland rural Jamaica and just listen to the deafening sound of quiteness, the sounds of birds chirping away in the almond and pomegranate trees , the buzz of strange flying insects, the scurry of creeping insects in the long uncut Brachiaria grass, the wind blowing thru the unkept orchard of nickel, apple, pear, jack fruit, mango, banana and palm trees, a very slow moving 4 x 4 pickup truck passing by (very badly maintained parochial roads do have some advantages)

The sound of a motor bike or the claxon of a red numberplate route taxi in the far distance, a women up the road expressing herself quite vocally about the drought and the lack of produce to sell at the market or the periodic sounds of reggae music blasting away in one of the many brightly coloured bars somewhere in the valley.

This is the background that has inspired me to try and start writing again via this new online method called blogging.
wiseguy2016

Defense Mechanism

When my second relationship ended in a second divorce within a year I was talking to my son about how I had moved in with my suitcases half unpacked because you have to be prepared that things might not work out.
I think my son would be a better blogger than me because he does not say much but when he says something its bang on target, bulls eye etc. He answered that it might have been “a self fulfilling prophecy”. Because you think it might happen, then you inevitably do things unconciously to make it happen.

What has this got to do with Defense Mechanism?
This was and probably still is my technique to protect myself emotionally and mentally. Always be prepared for the worse case scenario. If it does not happen fine but if it does then your prepared and it won’t hurt so bad. It is an inherit belief that anything good that you experience will be taken away from you.
If I watch to much daily news and see and hear all the bad stuff going on around me I reason if it has happen to them then it is bound to happen to me as well.
Anything that makes you happy will be removed. You are not allowed to be happy. This is getting really depressing isn’t it? I’ll stop. I know I need to go to the shrink…. again.
Anyway despite this technique I was in shock, sad and disappointed when our relationship came to an abrupt end (might have to do with the fact that I was slowly shutting down my defence mechanism and completely unpacking my suitcases)
However I opened a cover above my left ear just under my skin in the side of my skull and turned off that switch again for a second time confirming my convictions. I felt that I recovered reasonably well and quickly in comparision to other people dealing with break ups.
There is obviously something wrong with me on that score and not the women because two women can’t be wrong can they? O.K. don’t answer that!

Despite my seemingly successful quick recovery I don’t think that this is the right way to go into a relationship but at the same time the immense pain and sadness in breaking up is also not a pleasant thing to deal with either.
My son quoted something else from one of those Batman films I think, when he was stuck in some kind of deep hole or pit and every time he tried to climb out he failed. (Your going to have to help me out on this one) There was some other guy in the pit that said your attitude or disposition is all wrong. You have to climb in a way that you are positive that you will succeed, go the whole way, don’t think about failure. Lo and behold he succeeded in his next attempt.
I guess thats how you should go into a relationship, your in love, and you are going to stick together no matter what, there is no consideration of failure. Maybe similiar to athletes in competition. All contenders are aiming for gold and they convince themselves that they are going to win gold…. ..despite the fact that only one contender can win gold.
How do you deal with losing in competition and more importantly in love? What type of defence mechanism can you set up that does not affect your goal to succeed but protects you from the pain of failure?
I don’t think that formula exists.
This is apart of being alive.
If the fear of failure stops us from doing or starting something then we are as good as dead.

I quote the well known saying;
‘Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.

Alfred Lord Tennyson

Seeing as my son played an inspirational role in this short blog I would like to share a link to a song he made recently onder his artist name LTGL with the same title “Defence Mechanism”, but I have to warn you its not everyones cup of tea. No sorry I will correct that statement your going to love this song.
https://m.soundcloud.com/tangramrecords/ltgl-defense-mechanism-tngrm005
wiseguy2016