travel hurt

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“Travel isn’t always pretty. It isn’t always comfortable. Sometimes it hurts, it even breaks your heart. But that’s okay. The journey changes you; it should change you. It leaves marks on your memory, on your consciousness, on your heart, and on your body. You take something with you. Hopefully, you leave something good behind.” – Anthony Bourdain



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Enter the Void – the year that was

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I believe in world peace.

I believe that all men are created equal.

I believe in the Force, America, freedom, the Tooth Fairy, a bearded man in the sky, Jesus Christ.


Beliefs are cool but in the words of Tyrion Lannister,

“words are wind.”


They say faith without works is dead, and I’ve often felt that to believe something you need to be living it. Otherwise you just like the idea.

But what happens if that “living it” takes over. What if that action becomes the only sign of faith, does it just become empty ritual… and how can you tell?

How can you tell when you’re so caught up in the doing that you’ve stopped being.

When you’re more Martha than Mary.

How can you tell when the things you do sneakily become  the relationship you have, instead of overflowing from it. And does the fact that I even have to ask a sign things aren’t right?


What seems like an eternity ago I embarked on some travels, part discovery, part losing things along the way, part chasing dreams & passions. A journey which saw me hanging out with the houseless in Hawaii, and sharing tears in Palestine.

A journey which saw me stop writing. A little bit awkward if you keep a blog.

And in amongst the travel weariness, shameless self promoting selfies, new experience buzz, innocence lost insight, humanity rediscovered, crisis uncovered, laughter, tears, solitude and connection, was an invitation to enter the void.


I would summerise my faith journey this year as an invitation to enter the void. The laying down of things near and dear to me, let the chips fall where they may.

I started writing this post early 2014. I’ll finish it in 2015. Apart from a couple of YouTube videos, quotes & previously unpublished poems, I only wrote one post last year. And while very little of what I write sees the light of day I pretty much wrote nothing of anything.

I didn’t read much either, I made no videos, I didn’t volunteer, I didn’t go to church.

In fact I lost all desire to do any of these things, which was a little bit strange.

Concerning even, if I thought to hard enough about it.



Yet I felt strangely at peace with this invitation to emptiness, as if it were ok to be on this journey. Some how comfortable with the uncomfortable, or at least at peace with the process… whatever that might be.

Like rehabbing an injury, things aren’t right but one day will be.

Last year I attended a friends exhibition and was really moved buy the powerful stories and imagery, so much so that I bailed early, it made me think about my own travels, the people I’d encountered and their messed up situations. Maybe 2014 was the year I chose to shut down a bit instead of being overwhelmed by the worlds problems and my inability change things.

As 2015 begins I find a rekindled energy for some of my passions, a desire to read, to write, to create. I’m looking forward to finding and committing to a faith community, but that may depend on where I end up living. Somethings I don’t think I’ll ever resume, their time has past and I’m happy to let them go.


Love & Breathe. Here’s to doing coming from being.




One bite at a time

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I’m hungry, I want to eat. But the meal is massive, there is no way I can finish it all, I’ll hardly make a dent in it, it’s too much effort, it’s overwhelming… I might as well not try.

So I don’t.

I walk away from the table. From the meal that seems impossible to finish… still hungry.

One day I’d like to try.



The most common feedback I hear is that it is too overwhelming… “yea I’d like to do this”, “I’d like to try that”… but it’s just too much, it’s easier not to.

And you’re right, it is easier not to… and it is overwhelming.

But wouldn’t it be weird to want to make or effect some change and do nothing?


Wouldn’t that be like being hungry & not taking a bite? Then maybe that’s the answer…


one bite at a time.


Let me ask you this, What’s one small area of your world –  be it personal or in the world around you – that you’re not happy with… that isn’t as it should be & what can you do about it?

Maybe it’s as simple as starting to do a little research, maybe it’s committing to one tiny little change in your life.

One bite at a time.





adventures, Uncategorized

Veggie Tales


Veggie Tales: Sorry not the annoying animated vegetables, but rather a tale about veggies & a hint of challenges to come…

If you were after a Veggie Tales fix, this is a very good read. I’m pretty sure I just broke 1 of the blogging 10 commandments by sending readers away in the 1st paragraph, I’d best stay gainfully employed 🙂


I think the first raindrop in this story was a mind shift to, yeah God cares a lot about this world (it’s not all going to hell in a hand basket) & to believe so isn’t just liberal hippie BS.

Then a there were a few raindrops in quick succession.

While I studied I worked at the freezing works (meat works) during my summer holidays, I  did this for three years. My job was to push & lift carcasses from 6-60kg, the days were divided into patches of frantic work & heavy lifting to playing table tennis, cards & reading. The work was physical, the people fun & the pay fantastic.

Over my time there, there was a lot of speculation that the plant would shutdown & it did in my final year. One of reasons suspected by many was to do with resource consent & waste product. You see the company had consent for a period of yrs (five, i believe) to dispose of a certain amount of waste product into the local river. During this time people started to care about global warming & the environment etc, the council responded with tougher restrictions & tighter controls.

The company were able to continue to operate under the old agreement until it expired, even though it didn’t meet the new regulations. It was going to cost a lot to upgrade the waste treatment processes, so instead of paying to upgrade & meet the new standards the plant closed & business was moved to another part of the country.

Raindrop: ethical business & environmental impact.


Around that time I joined a gym & although my enthusiasm for it changes like the weather some of the nutritional stuff struck a chord… like your body can really only process the protein form 100g of chicken breast over a 3hr span & the rest is pretty much wasted… yet we consume far larger portions of meat with our meals than that… why?

Well it’s what we do… I guess it is a part of our culture. So because we’re used to having a certain amount of meat on our plate we do, even though our bodies can’t utilize it all…

Raindrop: demand drives supply


This was followed by stumbling onto some articles about associated health risk for the consumption of red meat etc.

Which basically got me thinking…

if we ate less meat we’d be healthier, there would be less demand & therefore less environmental impact.

I wasn’t just happy to reduce my meat consumption, as any money I spent was ultimately going to support a system I’d become opposed to, so about 18 months ago, I went vegetarian (or some strange hybrid form of it).


I’m not opposed to the killing & eating of animals, I love a steak as much as the next guy… it’s rather the quantities we consume it in & the process of how we get.

Lately I’ve found these guys, I like their bacon…

and they were the only company to answer any of my questions.


I don’t write this to convert you all, or shame you dirty meat eaters, but rather to show what that change/choice process looks like for me, and to ask you….

where are the raindrops falling in your life?

Because for you it may not be what you eat, it may be something else. And while it would be time-consuming & life draining to research everything you consume, I’m sure there are things you’ve come across & thought that it wasn’t right or messed up, maybe it was just the first raindrop, more will come…

and then we’re brought to that place, to do something about it, or continue walking in the rain.

As for me, their have been a few more raindrops of late… but this choice is going to hurt…










The 1st drop goes unnoticed, it’s not until after it’s raining that you look back and say, “yes, that is when  it begun”.

You notice the 2nd & 3rd, but you’re not sure it’s rain so you hold out your hand, and as you collect a few drops you look skyward just to be sure.

A few splashes on your face later & it’s confirmed, It’s raining. The choice now, is whether you do something about it or do you ignore. Do you change-up? Put on that jacket, run, seek shelter. Or do you ignore it, pushing it to the back of your mind & continue as before.

Choices, Change, and the ideas that led to them… for me they’re a lot like raindrops. By themselves they mean nothing, but when a few of them land on you, you’re brought to a place of choice.


I think the 1st raindrop was back in 2001, although I didn’t realize it then, nor could a fully articulate what I was trying to say.

I recently stumbled onto some old photos I once had in an exhibition in ’01, it was a doco-style series, “out of sight, out of mind“. It followed a sheep through a small abattoir. I remember one young boy of about 8yrs hitting the pictures on the wall, yelling at the “evil bad man” while his mother tried to pull him away & explain it was just art. Both were wrong.

Like that little boy you might not like the pictures below, feel free to scroll down to the next chunk of text. Apologies for the quality, these were taken with my phone. Some of these are test prints, some final, a sample  from the series Out of sight out of mind. Unfortunately I no longer have the final image.











The series finished with the a photo of the very 1st image (above) fashioned into a plate with a lamb chop on it (it’s been misplaced along the way).

The images weren’t meant to shock, or turn people off meat, or protest animal cruelty. It was a simple statement that we often don’t think about where stuff comes from or how it gets to us…

out of sight, out of mind.


A few years ago I finished a period of study which radically altered my view on Christianity, God, the world & my place in it. And on commencing paid employment and finally having a disposable income, questions began to pop into my mind about what I was doing with my money, what was I endorsing or supporting with how I spent my wealth.

The other day I read this, it about sums it up.

“Every time you spend money, you’re casting a vote for the kind of world you want”

– Anna Lappe


It seems a long time since I posted tree hugging conspiracy, I just reread it, it brought a smile to my face. This week I’ll be blogging about some other changes, the raindrops that led to them & whispers of things to come.