Travel

Make Each Moment Paradise

My wife and I are in day three of our St. Thomas vacation and she decided to get her nails done in a little nail salon on the tourist strip in Red Hook and I decided to explore the area a bit.I bought a baseball cap to shield my sunburned forehead, chatted with the shopkeeper and she offered me a seat on her, "husband couch" until my wife's nails were done but I graciously declined. Having seen all of the tourist shops I could bare (2) I simply stood outside in the blazing heat hoping I wouldn't get charged with loitering. A baby iguana scurried right up to my feet and stared at me tilting his head. Right then I realized that I should make the most of this quiet moment. I decided to catch up on my email for a few minutes so I read James Altucher's latest blog on minimalism and really connected with it.  

   After I read his blog post I was inspired to write this one, and thought about how everything is connected. Each of our actions cause a ripple effect of which we'll never know the full extent of. In a way each of us are a tiny epicenter. Since studying the Tao Te Ching and trying to put its teachings into practice I've learned life is about surrendering to and making the most of each and every moment. Do I always remember to do this? No, but when I do life just flows better. A successful and joyful life is about learning the lessons, then teaching the lessons you learn in the subtlest most unobtrusive way possible. Most often the best way to teach is merely by example. Sometimes the very best moments in life are completely spontaneous, so we must be prepared to be awake enough to notice when they arise. These moments can be triggered by a blog post or a baby iguana. Your guards must be down and your heart must be open. So many people move to a beautiful place like Saint Thomas believing that living there will solve all of their problems. This much I have learned, paradise is not a place. Paradise is more like an attitude, it's a state of being. You must begin by radiating happiness wherever your feet are currently planted. When you begin to do this your life will start to miraculously change for the better.  I know this trip to St. Thomas is the first leg of the future my wife and I have dreamed about for years: traveling the world; writing; meeting interesting new people; learning; teaching; and loving.  I have many more miles to put on these feet, many more beautiful places to visit and so much more to learn but paradise, I've already found. ~Eric Vance Walton~

The Greatest Gift

  When there are no more jobs for these hands, no more ideas  streaming from my mind

I wish to be remembered as a cultural chameleon, a humble drifter, sensitive to the beauty of this world

these days, they are borrowed, but the memories are ours to keep

the greatest gift of the mortal is living a life so brave that you find your tribe, and grow old with those know your soul so well, they can see the world through your eyes.

~Eric Vance Walton~

Things I've Learned From Puerto Rico

1. The weather doesn't get any nicer than this.2. The people are standoffish at first but warm up quickly. 3. There seems to be a real "Love/Hate" undercurrent in their relationship with the US. 4. The music is loud. 5. They eat lots of meat. "Vegetables" usually consist of either a root vegetable or shredded iceberg lettuce with sliced tomato. 6. Driving is aggressive but people are not as heavy on the horns as most US cities. 7. Coffee is served with milk, almost never black. 8. Life is less orderly and lived at a much slower pace. After coming from mainland America it took a solid 3 days of varying degrees of frustration to get used to it. Now that I am I'm much happier for it. 9. My priorities will be re shifted with less of an emphasis placed on things. 10. I love being immersed in foreign places, learning subtleties of the culture. 11. I'll be back.

20130218-174918.jpg