As Roughing It As It Gets (For Me)

IMG_0464Roughing-it really brings out your true self. Me, I’m not much of a camper. Don’t get me wrong, I have camped before. I did the whole sleeping in a tent, living like the wild thing. I even portaged. Mind you, I also managed to tip the canoe, knocking everyone’s stuff in the water. I think they learned a valuable lesson in survival.

I’m more of a cottager. In the summer, my family spends most of our weekends up at the cottage. Although many people envision a cottage as a luxurious summer home on the lake, ours is not quite like that. It’s a little more rustic than most. We do have indoor plumbing, but it’s not clean water. And with the laughable water pressure in the shower, you’re better off washing your hair in the lake.

As a kid, my siblings, my cousins, and I would play in the water all day, inventing creative ways to jump/ fall into the water. We’d play hide and seek, which is quite the challenge when you’re on an island. Now a days, our cottaging experience is a little different. We still play board games, but most of the time, we’re on our phones. When it rains, it thunders. When it thunders, it’s only a matter of time before your all sitting in a dark room. During the brink of every power outage, the first words out of anyone’s mouth are, “Charge your phones!” That, and, “Eat all the ice cream!” Seriously, you can’t have ice cream go to waste. If that’s not roughing it, I don’t know what is.

Good thing we still have the lake water to keep us grounded.

Jump Down The Corporate Ladder

Maya Angelou QuoteWith the help of a friend, I recently had an epiphany. Many of us are told to seek the unconventional path we were meant to follow. For some, that might include seeking out their dream career and climbing the corporate ladder of their choosing. For me, it’s sort of the opposite.

I’ve always known that my path in life would be the one less travelled by. I thought I might be a dancer or an actress. I even thought I might work in a big ad agency. The more I tried each new career option, the more I learned about myself. I learned that my unconventional path wasn’t going to center around my career, but rather the opposite. The more I attempted to climb the corporate ladder, the more I wondered why I was doing it. Those around me told me to keep climbing, but all I wanted to do was jump off.

It’s said that if you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life. However, that’s not the only way to be happy. If you have  a job you enjoy, but it doesn’t take over your life, you’ll have time to actually live your life as well.

My dream doesn’t involve a dream career. It’s living a dream life. How about you?

Disappointed By The American Dream

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I was told that in America, you can be who you want to be. More importantly, you can purchase whatever you want, whether that be cereal with little to no nutritional value or regular ‘ole almonds. I was lied to. America may specialize in odd specialized products, but it appears that they have neglected the old faithful in the process.

I recently ventured to a Walmart in the great state of Virginia in search of a nutritious snack. Though I found a shelf full of nut varieties that included purple, blueberry almonds, I was unable to locate a simple bag of unsalted roasted almonds. What’s that about, America?

As I live in Canada where variety is generally limited to recognizable flavours, I looked forward to the wonder in store for me in the aisles of an American Walmart. However, this trip left me disappointed. The American dream as I knew it is no more.

The Economical Traveller’s Lament

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A recent wedding had me heading down to the good ‘ole U S of A. I love to seeing new countries and visiting friends that live in other parts of the world. However, I’ve come to realize that there is a difference between exploring a new country and travelling.

Travelling can be great. It allows you to explore foreign culture and take people-watching to a whole new level. The actual process of getting to and from your chosen destination, on the other hand, is draining, especially if you’ve chosen an economical route. After you’ve stepped off your third connecting flight, you start to rethink your priorities. Having lugged around your carry-on from airport to airport all day, all you want to do when you reach the hotel is shower and sleep. Being an economical traveller is exhausting. Continue reading

What’s In a Birthday?

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Why do we celebrate birthdays? So, I survived another year. That’s hardly something I had a hand in. However, I’ve learned that celebrating a birthday has it’s perks. I’ve learned that if you sell your personal information to enough big companies (not just anyone) and sign up for enough loyalty programs, you can walk away with a pile of free stuff on your birthday. I mean, the perks are basically limited to free bagels and coffee, but free is free. I’ve always been a fan of free stuff. I have  a pile of books on my shelf I got for free. I knew I would probably never read them, but I digress. Continue reading