Moon, Light and Shadow




A Sub-par Reality?


Journal entry: 18th July 2014

I have to say, it has been less than a week since I came back from the most meaningful two weeks of my life and I am having some difficulty settling back in. I’ve always understood that there is a HUGE difference between doing what I want to do and doing what I have to do but I’ve never felt the difference this acutely before.

Adjustments and change have always been a bit tricky for me to navigate and I’m aware that it’s not ok to crawl into bed at 7pm just so I won’t be alone with my thoughts. I wake up early as usual, all excited about my day and raring to go at 4am. Then I remember that I have to spend most of my day in an un-fulfilling role, and I hide under the covers until I absolutely have to drag myself out of bed.

Those two weeks felt more real to me than this reality. While I understand that it will always feel more rewarding and fulfilling doing what I want to do instead if what I have to do, the experience was so much more than that.  I remember, on our last day, as we were having breakfast together for the last time, most of us were thoughtful and a bit sad. We all already knew that our lives were forever changed by this experience.

As we talked about what we each be doing the next day I had shrugged and said “Oh well, back to the real world.” Then immediately realized how incorrect that statement was. My life, my world before the Creative Retreat, now seems like the false one. My life has changed in ways I never would have dreamed and my reality before those two weeks  seems unreal to me now. 

Today 20th September:

I am still having dreams about writing, being around our workshop table and having excerpts to read. In the dreams I hear Professor Funso’s voice: “You must think about what it is you are trying to say.” Then ‘Aunty’ Merle says “But what you really mean by that?”

I wake up with words I have to write down which I quickly forget when thoughts of the office weasel their way in. But I am writing every day.

This was one of the most incredible experiences of my life. Not just because of what I learned about writing but also because of the incredible people I met. I will never forget how it felt to meet and spend time with people who share this singular passion. We were all storytellers and it was an honour to have met so many brave, talented, interesting, warm and inspiring people.

Those two weeks have left an imprint on me. In so many ways. Since then I have added more value to my life by including more creative and purposeful endeavours.

Here’s to changing my life degree by degree.


The Lady At The Lighthouse

The Lady at The LighthousePhoto of me taken (and titled) by Kavita Ganness, one of my Cropper Sisters, on the last day of our Creative Workshop. We were at the Toco Lighthouse, squeezing in one more adventure before it was time to head back to “reality” and our old lives.

Weekend Getaway

Grand RiviereWhere I will be for the next three days: In a gorgeous cabin on the north coast of Trinidad surrounded by friends, birds, flowers, trees, peace and quiet. The Caribbean Sea is a two minute walk away and best of all, we are still in the leatherback turtle nesting season. 🙂

Camera: Check!    Notepad: Check!   Paint & Canvas: Check! Check!


What Do Children See?

I know I owe my readers a few posts for the A to Z Challenge but I just had to share my new article on Upful Journal:

A few minutes before Maracas Bay, I stopped at a little roadside stall which sold savoury sweets and pickled fruits. I said hello to the lady and the two young boys with her, asking for my usual pepper pineapple, and ordered a potato pie from her TODAY chalkboard menu. While she ‘went in the back’ to make the pie for me, the older boy, probably around nine years of age, looked up at me.

“You reaching as far as Maracas Beach? I could get a drop?”

My first reaction was surprise. I was a stranger to him! ”Where’s your family?” I asked.

“Here, but I just going there by my grandfather,”

The rest of my story can be found here. I hope you enjoy it and do explore. Upful Journal, an independent online journal with the vision of uniting Trinidad and Tobago as a community based on a mindful, positive, compassionate attitude and way of living, is all about sharing – sharing views, insights, expertise and opinions, but with a positive spin.

I will be back later tonight with my missing W, X and Y posts for the A to Z. Cheers!

Love and Light,



Week Of Rainbows

“May I never miss a sunset or a rainbow because I am looking down.” 
Rainbow over the Anchorage
Almost every day last week I spotted rainbows. On my way to and from work mostly.

In the boatyard near my office

Above the boatyard next to ours

A friend sent me a link to beautiful photos of Moonbows,
a phenomenon I did not know existed.

On Friday, my last day of work for 2012
In flight, just after take off on my way to Florida.
The dark spot on the lower left is the shadow of the plane
and it is encircled by a rainbow.

First rainbow in West Palm Beach outside my Mom’s apartment.
Rainbows have been symbols of hope and new beginnings throughout time, and seeing one has always made me smile. I photograph rainbows whenever an opportunity presents itself and seeing five rainbows in a week seems too important a symbol to ignore. So I did some research. The Symbolism of the rainbow is both rich and ancient.

A rainbow can symbolize a bridge between the spiritual realm and the realm of matter below. Or it can represent a journey’s end. The leprechaun’s legendary and mystical “pot of gold” is to be found at the end of the rainbow. Noah saw a rainbow at the end of the great and turbulent flood which signified the end of his voyage and a return to calmness and peace. In this respect the rainbow is also a symbol for cleansing.

As the rainbow only appears after stormy skies, it is a symbol for the restoration of cosmic order. And, just as turbulent storms are necessary for nature to cleanse and feed the Earth, so too are emotional storms necessary in our lives in order to cleanse away our burdens and feed our souls. In this respect the rainbow also symbolizes the peace and calmness which comes to us at the end of unsettling periods of our lives.

This last interpretation, for me was particularly beautiful. I believe that glimpsing so many rainbows in just a few days could not be simply by chance (or weather systems). I’ve been weighed down lately by several emotional situations and trying very hard to deal with them properly and move on in a healthy way. For me, these rainbows are reminders to have faith in myself, my path and my future. 

Rainbow research source: Joseph Panek

Letting Go Of Negativity

Original post written on 22nd November 2010

I spent the greater part of this weekend watching one of my favourite animated tv series: Avatar: The Last Airbender.
The series follows the adventures of the main protagonist Aang and his friends, who must save the world by defeating the evil Fire Lord and ending the destructive 100 year old war with the Fire Nation.
The story takes place in a world that is home to humans, fantastic animals, and spirits. Human civilization is divided into four nations: the Water Tribes, the Earth Kingdom, the Air Nomads, and the Fire Nation. Each nation has its own natural element, on which it bases its society. Furthermore, people known as Benders have the ability to manipulate the element of their nation using the physical motions of martial arts. The show’s creators based each Bending style on a style of real-world martial art, leading to visual differences in the techniques used by Waterbenders (tai chi chuan), Earthbenders (hung ga kung fu), for the most part, Firebenders (Northern Shaolin kung fu) and Airbenders (baguazhang). Each country is also associated with a season: autumn for the Air Nomads, winter for the Water Tribe, spring for the Earth Kingdom and summer for the Fire Nation.
At any given time, there is only one person alive in the world of Avatar who is capable of bending all four elements: the show’s Avatar, the spirit of the planet manifested in human form. When an Avatar dies, he or she is reincarnated into the next nation in the Avatar Cycle, in the order of the seasons. Legend holds the Avatar must master each bending art in seasonal order as well, starting with their native element.
The tv series was split into three ‘parts’ known as Books, each with many chapters. I am thoroughly enjoying the series, and the little fact that I started following Aang’s story a few months ago even though the series first aired back in 2006, makes me smile, as somehow this coincided with my exploration into Yoga. 
A few weeks ago, my Yoga class began a routine, at the end of which we would’ve performed kriyas (series of postures) and meditations specifically focusing on the seven chakras in the body. Now that we are onto the week of the seventh chakra, I can’t seem to stop thinking about the final chapter in Book Two.

Aang meets Guru Pathik, who attempts to teach him how to reach the Avatar state (enlightenment). After realizing that Aang knows nothing about Chakras he takes him to a creek and tells him: 
Guru Pathik: 
The water flows through this creek much like the energy flows through your body. (stirs the pool with a stick) As you see there are several pools where the water swirls around before flowing on. These pools are like our chakras.

So chakras are pools of spiraling energy in our bodies?

Guru Pathik:
(pleased) Exactly! If nothing else were around, this creek would flow pure and clear. However, life is messy, and things tend to fall in the creek, and then what happens?

The creek can’t flow?

Guru Pathik: 
(nods) Yes. But if we open the paths between the pools…(clears some moss clogging the water with his stick. The water pours quickly into the next pool, and soon all of them are running clean and clear.)

Aang: (eagerly) The energy flows! 
Life is like that isn’t it? When we allow negativity (stress, hurt, hate, bad habits) to build up in our lives without dealing with them and letting them go, we create blocks to our emotional, mental, spiritual and physical development and well being. I know I’ve accumulated many blocks over the years and I’m working on clearing away the moss and weeds and emotional buildup, so my true self can shine through.
I know I haven’t been as dedicated as I could have been during the last two months, toward improving myself and my life, but I also learned that I should not be too hard on myself. My intention is still there and I’ve seen and felt the benefits already. Habits are very tough to break, but I know I can do it. 

I took this photo during my four day ‘retreat’ in Blanchisseuse, and I came across it while I was sorting through my photo files. Reminded me of Aang and the pools. Maybe it’s a little sign that I need to go back, armed with all I’ve learned in the last ten weeks.

Storyline for The Last Airbender: Wikipedia

Magical World

Thank you for sharing my Month of Calvin & Hobbes. Now grab a friend and go explore! It’s a magical world out there!

Love and light!

In celebration of the release of The Complete Calvin and Hobbes on November 13th 2012, I’ve decided that November is My Month of Calvin. I’ll be featuring my favourite panels with that lovable, precocious, and philosophical six year old and his tiger. Enjoy! All my Calvin & Hobbes posts can be viewed here.

Bonsai – A Green Art

My best friend’s Dad grows Bonsai and last night my friend and I were discussing the best way to get his Dad’s Bonsai noticed. So today I took my camera along to his house and within minutes we were amongst his Bonsai, trying to figure out the best place on the porch to photograph them. We found a large enough space on one wall but had to elevate the Bonsai pots for the right angle. I walked around his living room searching for an object that was just the right height. I spotted a small wooden box and suggested that it would be perfect.

He looked up at what I was pointing at on a high shelf and remarked, “Oh those are my Father’s ashes.” I cringed with embarrassment but he took the box down saying that it was good to take his Dad down and let him ‘get involved’ now and then. I happily spent the next two hours lying on my tummy snapping photos of his Bonsai. It was my intention to create a Facebook page to get the ball rolling.

You are welcome to view the rest of my photos on the facebook page here:

Rainbow Farewell

“May I never miss a sunset or a rainbow because I am looking down.”
(I knew I’d see a rainbow before the big move)

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