Day 2056: Into the Unknown

As we enter into the unknown of another day and another blog post, I will tell you that the theme of the 2018 Edinburgh Festival Fringe is “Into the Unknown.”

I especially like that cover photo for “Into the Unknown” because many of my known photographs include my feet, like this one:

That reminds me that I went into the unknown yesterday with my son Aaron and his friends to try a highly recommended macaroni and cheese sandwich in Edinburgh, wearing my macaroni and cheese socks. Photos of that sandwich and other Edinburgh meals will remain unknown to my readers because my son extracted a known promise from me that I do NOT take pictures of food when I’m with him and his friends.

Before this visit, my son Aaron’s Edinburgh friends were unknown to me. They are unknown no longer.

That drawing of Aaron’s friend Jago was done by his known and long-time friend Cameron, who is known to my readers.

The known Cameron is on the right and the previously unknown Jago and Michael are on the left. When we went into that unknown grocery store to get spinach, which I’m known to need because of my known heart condition and medication, it was unknown to us that no photos were allowed there. The security guard told us that unknown rule so we would know not to take more photos there.

I hope it’s known to you that I’m known for taking photos everywhere I go as I venture into the unknown.

Those last few previously unknown photos show us going into the unknown of the amazing Neal Portenza’s latest and (I hope!) NOT final Edinburgh show, despite his poster.

I plan to be going into the unknown of more Fringe shows today.

Do you know what helps you find the courage to go into the unknown? For me, it’s known that blogging helps a lot.

Now let’s go into the unknown of today’s blog post ending.

Categories: blogging, personal growth, photojournalism, travel | Tags: , , , , , | 5 Comments

Day 2055: I’m Here

I’m Here in Edinburgh for the Fringe Festival and so are many other people, including actors, improv artists, musicians, and stand-up comedians, like the guy who inspired today’s blog title.

I don’t know Glenn Doncaster, even though he is “… what the Edinburgh Fringe is all about.” No matter what else Glenn does in his life, he’s helped me find my blog post title for today by putting “I’m Here” on the back of his Fringe flyer.

I’m here and so are others.

That’s my son Aaron and his friend Camilla meeting me at the Edinburgh Airport yesterday. Camilla has been here in my blog before. She told me yesterday that after she found out about my blog from Aaron, she decided to pick a blog post to read and — much to her amazement — found a photo of herself, as the beggar woman in a 2015 production of Sweeney Todd at the Fringe.

I’m here to tell you that synchronicity and coincidences like that help make life even more beautiful and rich.

I’m here to try to find that old blog post. I was not successful. I’m here to tell you it’s okay not to succeed sometimes.

I’m here to share other recent photos with all my readers who are here, now, too.

I’m here with my son and I couldn’t be happier.

I’m here to thank all who helped me create this post and — of course! — all my readers, who are here with me now.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Day 2054: Something uncanny happened.

Something uncanny happened on the wall of our hotel room in Reykjavik on our last night in Iceland:

That uncanny quote is from page 67 of From Behind the Mountains.

During the second roundup that fall something uncanny happened. We found one sheep after another who behaved as though they’d already been herded, as though they’d been calmed and brought into the drove.

Something uncanny happened when I tried to search for the author of From Behind the Mountains. Google returned NO matching results. Uncanny.

All during the day and night yesterday, something uncanny happened in different parts of Iceland. See if anything uncanny happens when you take a look at my uncanny photos.

If something uncanny should happen in the upcoming United States midterm elections, I can always move to Iceland. After all, uncanny Iceland has lots of naturally uncanny beauty, sheep, cats, puffins who live in cliffs on an uncanny island, and bagels too!

Something uncanny will be happening very soon when we fly off to uncanny Edinburgh and start our latest uncanny adventure at the uncanny Fringe Festival.

I look forward to your uncanny comments.

Uncanny thanks to all who have helped me create these uncanny posts about uncanny Iceland and also thanks to you. Why? Because I’m canny and I can.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments

Day 2053: Peace & Quiet

In an Iceland hotel, instead of demanding “Do Not Disturb,” one politely asks for “Peace & Quiet.”

I think we all deserve some Peace & Quiet these days, especially with all the noise in the news.

Do you see any Peace and/or Quiet in my other photos from yesterday?

I’m off for another day of Peace, Quiet, & Dramatic Scenery in Iceland.

Peace, Quiet, & Thanks to all who helped me create today’s blog post and — of course! — to you.

Categories: inspiration, personal growth, photojournalism, travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Day 2052: Take the pledge

Yesterday, I saw this request to take the Icelandic Pledge.

I like that pledge. Will you take other pledges with me?

I pledge to treat others as I wish to be treated.

I pledge to look for beauty and humanity wherever I go and share it with others.

What pledge would you take?

I also pledge to blog every day as best I can and to NOT stress out when I encounter (usually temporary) problems along the way.

Finally, I pledge gratitude to all who help me create these posts and — of course! — to YOU.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 31 Comments

Day 2051: Meet Mother Nature at her Fiercest

When I see “Meet Mother Nature at her Fiercest” these days, I inevitably think of the scary effects of global warming, like the wildfires raging in California right now. However, when you see “Meet Mother Nature at her Fiercest” when you’re in Iceland, it refers to geothermal phenomena like geysers and naturally heated pools.

However, when you see “Meet Mother Nature at her Fiercest” at Ann’s blog, it could mean many things.

What do you think of when you see “Meet Mother Nature at her Fiercest”?

Feel free to leave a Fierce comment below.

Natural gratitude from Iceland to all those who helped me create this “Meet Mother Nature at her Fiercest” post and — of course! — to you, my Fierce and/or Natural readers.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

Day 2050: WOW

  • WOW! We just arrived in Iceland via WOW airlines.
  • Do you see any WOW moments here?
  • WOW! There’s a Dunkin’ Donuts in the Iceland Airport. That reminds me of my WOW hometown of Boston.
  • I was WOWed by my conversation with my LYFT driver to Boston’s Logan Airport, Johnny.
  • We are now on our way to be WOWed by the beautiful Blue Lagoon.
  • WOW! I’m successfully publishing my first blog post from Iceland.
  • WOW thanks to all who helped me create today’s WOW post and to my readers, who continue to WOW me!
  • Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , | 30 Comments

    Day 2049: Self Acceptance

    Yesterday, myself and several other selves discussed “Self Acceptance” in a therapy group.

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    All the selves in that group agreed that “Self Acceptance” is an important topic and something that people need to practice, practice, practice.

    Here and now, I’m practicing self acceptance as I make decisions about what to pack for my trips to Iceland and Edinburgh.  I will accept myself whether or not I bring along my ukulele and/or my laptop.

    I am also practicing self acceptance about the other photos I took yesterday.

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    Here‘s a Billy Joel song about self acceptance:

    Self acceptance and gratitude now!

     

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    Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

    Day 2048: What drives you nuts

    Yesterday, both of my therapy groups wanted to discuss people and situations that drive them nuts.

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    If idioms you don’t understand drive you nuts, here’s an explanation of “driving me nuts” from knowyourphrase.com :

    Meaning:

    To be greatly frustrated or annoyed. The word “nuts” is sometimes replaced by the words crazy, bonkers, bananas, insane, or up the wall. However, the meaning remains unchanged.

    When people are annoyed to the point where they can no longer tolerate anymore, they might use this common idiom to describe their frustrations.

    Origin:

    According to the website Word-Detective, by the mid to late-1800s, the word ‘nut’ was slang to mean a person’s head. Not long after, it looks like it also acquired the meaning of someone who was not acting right in the head, e.g., a person acting strange or crazy might be described as “nuts” or being “off their nut.”

    The earliest example I could find of this phrase in writing comes from the newspaper The Bilioxi Daily Herald, printed in the year 1884. The idiom is written under an advice column, where people could write in asking a woman named Ann Landers for advice:

    “DEAR ANN LANDERS: I am a boy, 18 years old, a high school senior, and my dad is driving me nuts! He has read a lot about drugs and is scared to death I might be trying something.”

    Example Sentence(s)

    * My neighbor is blaring loud music and it’s really driving me nuts. Maybe I should go tell them to stop.

    * Emily is driving herself nuts over the job interview she has tomorrow, and she’s having trouble sleeping from the anxiety.

    Ann is driving herself nuts over (1) the plane trip she is taking tomorrow and (2) how painful her shoulder is, and she’s having trouble sleeping from the anxiety.

    When people in my groups kept  focusing on what drives them nuts  (which included rude people and politicians), I eventually drove the discussion towards coping strategies. I asked people to focus on what helps when things drive them nuts, and they were able to identify many things , including:

    • taking a breath,
    • taking a shower,
    • nature,
    • patting a cat,
    • phoning a friend,
    • reading,
    • writing,
    • good food,
    • cleaning,
    • being in the moment, and
    • getting something done they were procrastinating.

    It’s driving me nuts that I can’t remember any more of the many coping strategies people discussed yesterday.

    Do any of these photos drive you nuts?

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    It drives me nuts what happened to Whitney Houston, whose birthday was yesterday. Here and here are some of her amazing live vocal moments:

    Feel free to comment about what drives you nuts and what helps you cope.

    I hope gratitude doesn’t drive you nuts, because I have a lot of it for all who helped me create this post and — of course! — for YOU.

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    Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

    Day 2047: A thought is just a thought

    Yesterday, in a therapy group where many thoughts were expressed …

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    … I said, “A thought is just a thought.”  One of the group members thought that thought was important, so I wrote it up on the board:

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    The group members thought that was helpful, because the thoughts people expressed in the group included fortune telling, catastrophizing, mind reading, personalization, all-or-nothing thinking, over-generalizing, jumping to conclusions, labelling, shoulds, and other cognitive distortions.  For example, my expressed thoughts included, “The plane might crash on Saturday!”

    As I’m writing this blog post, my thoughts include this one: “My shoulder, after my fall in January,  will never be right.”

    We all have lots of thoughts. Thoughts are NOT the same as actions or accurate forecasts of the future. I’ve thought, many times, to challenge a thought with this question, “Is that a helpful thought?”

    A thought is just a thought and a photo is just a photo.

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    A thought is just a thought, a barrier is just a barrier, a verb is just a verb,  a memory is just a memory,  and a theme song is just a theme song.

    Feel free to express your just thoughts in a comment, below.

    Gratitude is just gratitude, so thanks to all whose thoughts helped me create today’s post and — of course! — to thoughtful YOU.

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    Categories: cognitive behavioral therapy, group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

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