I always have a different definition of Home. Sure, there’s this nice house with nice stuff that everyone seems to want and get panicky depressed if they can’t have it, but then there’s this Home that can take me places of adventure where I actually get to be happy being myself stress free and payment free.
Living in California made me realized that part of my Home really are Outdoors and Nature. It’s where I’m most alive. It’s who I am. I would be dead inside without them.
I tried the American Dream of Home Ownership because everyone told me I should, that it’s the best investment I will ever make in my life. Lies, lies, lies. Trap, trap, trap.
Home Ownership is not for everyone. It works for many. Doesn’t for others. Differs, person to person. It does however make Banks and Rich Lenders happy. Greedily, mercilessly happy. And yes, our Government supports and protects them. They even get Bailed Out to guarantee maximum return of investments. But, not for the Home Owner.
Anyone obligated to work to pay for expensive wants is never free. For the average middle income, a House is signing one’s time, youth and adventures away in a Housing Market where the Rich are used to over bidding.
By the time we pay the overpriced 30 years mortgage, the mirror will show an old, tired person just about to carry out their adventure bucket lists. What if we die before 30 years? Was it worth giving up all the could have beens? Was it worth the sacrifices and compromises?
Obviously, I’m the Poor Dad in the Rich Dad, Poor Dad Scenario because I’m not investing in real estate and Capitalism, but I don’t care, it feels way better free to do whatever I want and invest on experiences I get to feel, remember and never loose.
Our happiest moments and memories with those we love are never wasteful. It’s never the wrong investment. More freedom to pursue anything I want, more time to live longer, more chances for adventures, happiness and love, these are my meaningful investments. But they are not popular investments. And they were self taught because no one told me it’s a good investment. Important life lessons I had to learn the hard way myself so I can appreciate what matters and what doesn’t.
I remember enslaving for 3 years with post traumatic complications and financial hardships many years after because I bought a Dream Home that was never mine. I got fucked! Be careful for what we wish for because they can come true. Be vigilant for wishes that were never ours to begin with. People like to brainwash others of their dreams and missed opportunities. They could be our Relatives, Family, Friends, Co-Workers, the Social Media, T.V. and magazines.
The small, simple life is always the happiest, most peaceful life. Bigger and more, that’s Capitalism talking. That’s Greed, Vanity, Entrapment and Unhappiness. That’s the Devil’s Whisper in our ears that the Devil can give us Mansions, Riches, the World, everything…for an exchange, our Body, Mind, Heart and Soul. Can we hear it? It’s getting louder. Can we resist it? May be.
Happiness is a Lifestyle choice. Freedom is a Lifestyle choice. Adventure is a Lifestyle choice. Between Dream Lifestyle and a Dream Home, what would it be if we get to choose only one?
“When I was young, I was naive, innocent, ambitious, too trusting and I believe People easily. The Devil knew my weakness and use those People as his instruments to get to me. But God intervened and saved me many times. The internal Battle however between Good versus Evil is ongoing. Who wins in the end?”
I have faced the virus weeks before Public Health admitted COVID was already community acquired. I have been asking screening questions 2-3 weeks outdated because Public Health said so, and have to ignore what I have been observing with my own eyes. But this was 2 years ago. Things would have been better, smoother, more organized and transparent by now.
2 years after, I still can not think smart where stupidity and robotic submission are preferred for being non-provocative. The cycle is repeating again. I have to act dumb and just follow the script literally for job security. I’m suppose to just follow and not awaken People for what is really happening around them. I’m not suppose to pull the alarm. It’s not my place. I’m just a worker.
I am just one of the many thousands of Healthcare Workers who knew we are presently in an emergency danger level but can’t do anything about it. Implied silence. Agreed silence. Fear silence. Comfort silence. No Care Silence.
Overwhelmed but unaddressed. Burned Out but no way out. Suffering Mental Health Crisis but not allowed to fully go through their own crisis. This is the unresolved growing truth in the lives of every Doctor, Nurse, Respiratory Therapist for more than 2 years since the COVID Pandemic began.
With each added year, a fraction of the irreplaceable experienced professionals will leave, retire, choose a less stressful job, department or specialty. We haven’t seen the worst of understaffing in hospitals and clinics yet, but we’ve seen its fatal outcome for those neglected of life saving timely medical care.
Fast forward COVID with its more resistant, highly evolved variants in 10 years. We should be concerned. But sure, let’s not be alarmed yet. We may not make it that far anyway.
The long lines for testing, the increasing number of sick calls among all fields of Essentials, the doubling, tripling of daily new cases and symptomatic are happening now. Has been the last 3 weeks.
Whether we believe Omicron is a serious threat or not, if our work involves direct person to person interaction, chances are many of us will be infected with the Omicron without even knowing it this year.
We could be Patient Zero in our work place first outbreak.
We are now in a new emergency phase. But we are not suppose to talk about it. We need to keep it quiet and be non-disruptive.
We are suppose to just focus on work and pretend there is nothing seriously wrong that is being passed around as quickly as breathing.
The difference between a Nurse and a Teacher? A Teacher with a strong Union can opt for online schooling to protect self during an outbreak. A Nurse with or without Union has to work in person during an outbreak because it’s a job requirement.
Let us begin the year more informed. Let us start our year, owning our own actions. Omicron is just starting its trajectory goal in the United States. It can mutate further to be as deadly serious like Delta or be replaced by a more superior variant.
Deltacron, a combination of Delta and Omicron can hit Summer . No idea of how it evolved, but it’s already been identified.
The Global Pandemic was built on layers of lies and propaganda that is still being covered up with more lies starting off at Wuhan. Secrets to avoid panic. Secrets for power and control. Secrets to cover darkness.
Nobody cares anymore. Nobody cares about you and me. We transitioned from COVID fatigue to I don’t care.
We are spreading Omicron ourselves by thinking we don’t have it. I have heard this so many times when Patients are asked why they need to see a Doctor, “I have sore throat but it’s not COVID,” “I have runny nose, but it’s not COVID,” “I have headache, cough and fever. It’s Colds, not COVID.” It’s anything but COVID.
I was stunned for a moment when my lobby was in max capacity, half with possible Omicron, half not. Patients seem not concern they are next to a coughing person. Staff seem not concerned the lobby has become a super spreader area. I was alarmed for my Patients. So I went out, took the lead in helping and delegating, like a Traffic Policeman. Lobby empty in 10 minutes.
I guess I still cared, if not, I would have just let People infect each other. I’m just one however. This is not the general thinking anymore of many Healthcare systems, Indoor businesses and public facilities. Been to the Mall lately?
It was the perfect early morning walk by the hills overlooking the ocean. A tinge of gold from leftover over Sunrise on everything the Sun has reached.
The breeze cool, the air smells clean and fresh.
People are just starting to slowly begin their adventure day by the beach with to-go coffee in their hand. Children running excitedly with their toy pail and shovel from parking lot to the beach. Parents, looked like they just woke up, but excited for the much awaited weekend break.
Fishing, surfing, swimming, hiking, playing, day camping, eating, Nature tripping, Sun bathing, photography, escape meditation…Rockaway Beach, a small shoreline town big on fun and relaxing things to do at the beach.
Until we stop and see, we’ll never know what adventure a place, a moment has to offer. Think less, be surprised more. Spontaneity.
Travel doesn’t have to involve flying and cruising. We don’t have to wait when the most outrageous contagious Omicron Variant will subside. We don’t have to postpone happy times and new road trips experiences. People should stop dictating the when, if the when is just a few steps or miles away.
It’s when we don’t expect and plan when adventure comes glorious and unexpected. Wishing everyone tons of beautiful Sunrise and Sunsets this New Year has to offer.
Our old dependable car can be enough to visit the near and far, the familiar, the new and the taken for granted.
Travel 2022 can the simplest we ever did yet the most astonishing if we give it a chance. So, what are we waiting Folks? It’s our weekend, Sun’s out, weather is great. Broom, broom, go, go to our heart’s content Blogger Friends.
Took 6 years and 100 chances to finally visit Gray Whale Cove State Beach , a secluded beach between my favorite outdoor trio, Half Moon Bay, Montara and Pacifica, California.
Parking is challenging at the East side of Highway 1. Crossing from parking lot to entrance is not for the faint of heart when vehicles are zooming from both sides of the narrow road. No pedestrian lane. It’s run, dash and good luck.
A steep wooden ladder leads down to the beach.
A tree trunk serves as a partial bridge to the right side of the cove. Further exploration requires balance and some jumping skills.
California Beaches are the most dramatic in the World. They are powerful, emotional , nostalgic, fun and wildly untamed. They can take us back to the Golden Era of beauty in simplicity. Almost like entering a time capsule.
Gray Whale Cove State Beach is one of these dramatic beaches whose hidden treasure cove is surrounded by rugged cliffs that drops into the Pacific Ocean. Pine Trees guards its perimeter from the outside World. From the road, first timers won’t even know it exist.
Gray whales can be seen migrating close to shore. Best overlook for whale watching is actually from above at the edge of the Devil’s Slide Bunker, a thrill seekers playground.
There are three most scenic panoramic views. First, from the Devil’s Slide Bunker.
Second, the Beach Cove itself that meets the Ocean . Its waves, a constant source of positive energy and relaxation.
And third, from McNee Ranch and Montara Mountain, part of Montara State Beach. This side has many breathtaking Ocean View Hiking Trails. So beautiful, it becomes a distraction for serious Hikers. Half the time, it’s stop, take pictures and go.
Each view offers a different experience. Each experience offers a different perspective. One Cove, 3 adventures or more. It’s all up to you how many adventures your heart and body can take from a few hours to one entire day.
I didn’t see any Gray Whales that morning, but the Ocean’s mouth was enormously wide and deep like that of a Whale. A few more steps, it would have swallowed me whole never to be seen again.
I didn’t test nor temp the Ocean. I respect it, like I respect my life. So I stepped back at a safe distance, closed my eyes and just let my soul drift and enjoy the Ocean and the Outdoors for as long as I can.
This is what I want the rest of my year to look and feel like. Wishes are free and they do come true. May be I’m a hopeless optimist, but sometimes optimism and positive thinking brings in generous luck, good Karma and amazing surprises.
We all have our version of Happiness. These are mine. It may be trivial, but they give me solace and comfort. We all need to spend some time, no matter short and small with what makes us happy. We need to spend some time with ourselves and discover the many stories we are yet to tell and inspire the World.
Here we go again. 2022 begins with confusion and mix messages from Government Leaders, Health Experts, CDC and Employers when the Omicron and Delta Variants daily case numbers and hospitalization are sky rocketing heading to the moon.
December 1, 2021, California announced first Omicron Variant in the United States. 35 days after, Omicron new daily cases has reached 1 million in one day. The message, “Be concerned, but do not be alarmed.” My opinion? Be alarmed. Start buying toilet papers and necessities before the next shocker announcement. People have no idea that we are being prepared again for the next Emergency.
Omicron cases doubles by the day. Most infectious of all Variants yet shortest quarantine time. Does that make sense? New Year’s first 4 weeks will reach 500,000-1,000,000 new cases per day in the U.S. alone.
Tuesday, we surpassed 1 million new cases in one day. But sure, let us spread it more. Perhaps this is how we achieve Herd Immunity were the vaccines have not achieve yet.
Economic Normalcy: Okay to self quarantine for 5 days then go back to work and community infectious or not.
Safety: Wear mask for 5 more days after initial 5 days quarantine because the asymptomatic carrier or recovering sick could still be infectious. So, really it should be 10 days total quarantine time as previously practiced based on Science.
Reduced 5 Days because it’s what’s tolerated and not what will slow down the Omicron and Delta Variants Outbreaks and Mutations.
Voluntary testing for the vaccinated after travel and out of town holidays. If I don’t feel like testing because I feel fine, I just report to work like it’s the most natural okay thing to do. No question asked. I did it twice. Millions of the vaccinated are doing the same. Again, no question asked. HIPAA Confidentiality is a serious basic right protected by laws.
If work outbreaks happen, then it will happen, just like in the Airline Industry recently. This would be the normal expected events in all Work Force in 2022. And we deal with it as it arise.
Healthcare Staff, Airline Workers, Direct Customer Service Work Force are on a different quarantine category because they belong to the needed “Essentials.” It’s recommend that the “safer” quarantine time is 7 days but if “Short Staff,” it’s 5 Days. But since it’s Short Staff almost everyday, then it’s really 5 Days Quarantine for all. Again, back to work infectious or not.
Is tolerance okay when there are harmful risks involve? Is tolerance an alternative to being responsible and conscientious? Or is tolerance another Political trade off?
Is tolerance ethical when we have a vulnerable group of population that are unvaccinated? We still have millions of the unvaccinated, and likely will choose to remain unvaccinated. What happens to them? Do we pretend they don’t exist? Is their safety unimportant?
Isn’t this crazy? Are convenience and money more important than people’s health and well being?
We’re concerned about new outbreaks, but we just let these outbreaks run loose in our community anyways.
The Government and CDC may all together divert the Public’s focus on daily new cases to stop the virus from disrupting Economic Recovery. No reports. No alarms. No caution.
“Conspiracy Theories have truths in them. But we are not suppose to know, learn and reason. We are suppose to just accept what we are told and not ask questions. We all have been victims of them, willing or not since COVID started in China. Lies and coverups one after the other. Lies became Truths. Truths became Lies. Ignorance and Confusion became Wisdom and Worship.”
Weird, strange, astonishing. People, like COVID have mutated in its handling and response of the Pandemic in just 2 years. And that will continue to evolve year after year.
Only a third or less with COVID are staying home. Most because they are unaware they have COVID. Some by choice. There will come a time, many of the sick will just join the healthy and it’s a normal okay.
For the vaccinated, COVID testing is voluntary. So really, many workers will be unknown asymptomatic spreaders because they may not feel sick yet give COVID to their customers, co-workers and Family members.
If future new variants continues to be less dangerous, People may opt to skip testing all together and just go on living their lives. COVID becomes insignificant by choice.
This is the concerning dilemma of COVID in 2022. It’s possible that everyone can just go back to work, school, dine, shop, go to crowded public places and parties while sick with COVID. It’s already happening.
Should we just ignore the dangerous COVID numbers so Economy can bounce back? Should we just modify critical safety measures to please People?
If we are not careful and just allow People to dictate Leadership and Public Safety, the chaos and suffering of 2021 is just a prelude of what’s going to explode in 2022.
Happy New Year? That’s the hope. That’s the dream. Better New Year? Only if People give a damn. The action of some are the outcome for all. 2022 is no different.
“I started my first day of work confused. Several Patients with possible COVID, standing next to other Patients sick from different ailments. The lobby is small. Everyone’s breathing the same air. Who should I protect first? Who should I keep safe? After a few minutes, critical thinking and common sense kicked in. Shit, 2022 definitely will outdo 2021.”
We should have accepted COVID as an everyday virus by now and just live life with less disruptions as possible. It should not be something that keep tearing us apart. Spending a week in Southern California made me appreciate what I’m missing in Northern California.
Even in the same State and Cities, Americans have different perceptions, attitude and behaviors when it comes to COVID. I’m liking it more and more the group that is into Freedom, Liberty and Happiness.
We can still have fun and not be reckless. We can still enjoy our wants and still be mindful.
I’m appreciating more the perks of living without fear and just enjoying life as it comes.
I have accepted COVID as an everyday normal occurrence both at work and my community. It’s no longer an inconvenience nor a threat. It has become ordinary as colds and plain sore throat. Having a different mind set about it made me move forward.
From my observation of the outside world, many already have moved on regardless of what President Biden, Fauci, the CDC and the News says.
People are tired. People want to be free in their choices. “My Life, My Choice,” because it is the truth.
What’s your opinion of 2022? Explosive? Muted? Better? Razzle Dazzle Bedazzled? Moving forward I will do whatever?
Will you allow COVID, Leaders and Experts dictate your Dreams for 2022? We can’t change 2021, but we’re fortunately given another year to rewrite our stories and adventures. Be generous to yourself. 2022 is your year, not someone else’s.
Self care, Happiness and Meaningful Relationships will be top priorities for the New Year. As my Son says, “Dad, New Year, New You.” I can only try with patience and kindness in mind.
People assume I have this amazing life. People assume I’m always happy. People assume I will say yes to everyone because I’m generalized as The Nice Guy. People assume I can help everyone. So many assumptions. So many expectations. So many assigned, implied roles and responsibilities.
I can’t say this year was all blissful and blessed. It had its worst to a point that I lost myself, and secretly wished I will just disappear so things will be over.
No more pain and sadness. No more drowning and suffocation. No more worries and struggles. No more pleasing. No more guilt. Just stillness and peace.
Everyone will get what they want. Everyone wins. Everyone will be gratified, satisfied, justified.
People will have a huge sigh relief.
Victorious revenge for those who have judged me as the Evil Ungrateful. Whether I deserve the punishment and banishment or not, whether I am right or wrong, it doesn’t matter anymore.
I’m tired of fighting. I have chosen to surrender my defenses. People can take what they want. People can have what they want. No resistance. No cares.
I tried to make as many moments. I tried to create as many memories. In between, life and people weren’t so kind. I had my chaos, tears and ridiculous dramatic battles.
I have bled. I have cried. I have fallen agonal and voiceless. But I’m still here for reasons I can’t explain nor hide.
I learned to adapt and pretend. I learned to be numb and smile like it’s real. I’m doing better in looking happy and fine. Some days seem so real in it’s goodness that I start believing it could be true.
My iPhone Photo Library gave me a quick recount of how I lived my 2021. A lot of awesome joyful Family road trips and outdoor adventures. Many of them I have forgotten. My memory isn’t as sharp as it was. I easily forget things now. The details, a blur.
Then there are days and dates in between the Photo Events that are missing. What was I doing then? Was I Work busy? Was I in my withdrawn, sad World? Or was I just taking a break from Social Media and rediscovering myself in importance with self care? Was I healing? Was I breaking? Was I in the middle of a storm?
Again, my memory is blank, unable to remember and recall no matter how much I try. A sign that my Brain Memory Cells and Neurons are starting to die. Something that happens when we get old and accelerated by stress and unhealthy lifestyle.
Should I call them this New Year? Will they talk to me? Will they forgive me even if I believe I haven’t done anything wrong? Am I still part of that Family that once were more precious than my life itself?
Will we all be humble enough to let go of the past and it’s enormous pride so we can start a new kinder future together in 2022?
I do have a few major regrets. I do have a few wishes I hope will happen. I could never be fully whole nor my happiness complete until I get to fix and mend these few regrets. I know it’s important, but why I am too terrified to try? Am I a coward? Am I too proud? Am I selfish? Or is it unresolved PTSD? Could be all.
It is hard to love oneself fully when part of us haven’t reconciled with People and relationships that needed reconciliation and closure.
It is hard to feel completely home when home is defined as the distance point between now and then, childhood and adulthood separated apart by oceans and continents. Standing on firm ground, but often drifting. Present but never whole.
I don’t want anymore things this New Year. I just want healing of everyone’s broken heart and brokenness. I just want genuine forgiveness to happen to everyone.
Will 2022 give me happier and more successful stories? Or will it have the same regrets, just resetting to day 1?
I want to believe it will be more and better. A clean slate of choices I haven’t done or failed to do.
I am not into New Year Resolutions but this year I will be focusing on Healing and Reconciliation with those my heart yearns to make peace and connect. I just pray the outcome are kindness and happiness for all.
The clock has just reset. Yesterday’s last Sunset is gone forever. Time lost another year and its many could have beens. Perhaps today and the new days thereafter, I am braver, stronger, more assertive. Courage and Change.
New Year’s Eve, we choose to do what we love and hope it continues in 2022. We drove at 6:30 AM to Hayward, then Redwood City for my Son’s direct buy transactions of vintage Army Figures and Star Wars Clone Troopers. Then to Montara for an adventure hike to Whale Cove for me. Then to Japantown SF for food experiences and Goodwill shopping for wife and son. The Sunset at Cliff House Lands End was a bonus gift of 2021 before it ended.
We had our To Go Japanese Food inside our car as the Sunset disappeared. It was beautiful. Everything was beautiful. It was festive. Better than countdown parties and fireworks. Everyone was happy and got what they wanted. Took 4 cups of coffee to finish them all, but so worth it.
This was my last happiest memory of the Philippines. I can’t just erase 30 years of wonderful feelings and emotions nor replace them. It is part of who I am. Will always be. Letting go was never an option. So, I’m hopeful when the Prodigal Son returns, my Father and Mother will welcome me with an embrace I miss so much everyday. I don’t care about inheritance. I don’t care about wealth. It was always about love, acceptance, understanding and belongingness. May their eyes see me as me. May their hearts welcome me with all my brokenness, mistakes and imperfections. I can only hope and pray for the best possible outcomes. The rest is up to God’s hands.
May everyone fully immerse and enjoy the surprises of this New Year and not be in a hurry to end it. Savor time. Let every senses come alive with each new wonderful moment, discovery and experience.
Happy New Year Blogger Friends and Readers. I will catch up on my readings and visits soon. Work and Life just got very busy. Thank you for being a part of an unforgettable 2021. You all inspired me in so many meaningful ways. I’m truly grateful for all the support, kindness and adventures.
“Joy to the World” and “Peace on Earth,” if only they are that simple. But perhaps 2022 will be better because People will choose being better.
Oh, another New Year’s Resolution, “No more assumptions. No more pretending. Authenticity.”
Bad Weather or Christmas Miracle, our first Disneyland Christmas happened.
We didn’t expect to get in Disneyland this Winter Holidays. Reservations are full till New Year. But the day before we were leaving L.A., there is was, an opening for 3.
Rain is hard to come by in California. So, it never occurred to me that all day and all night rain can happen in Disneyland of all places.
I always imagined the happiest place as Sunny and clear blue skies. Turns out, that’s a Fairy Tale.
I was dreaming of Christmas Parades and Fireworks, that I didn’t check my weather app, and even if I did, I wouldn’t have believed the 100% chance of rain. Wife said she knew, but didn’t want to ruin my excitement.
We entered Disneyland exactly 8 A.M. Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge still empty except the line to the Rise of the Resistance ride. No more virtual queue.
First stop, the Cantina. Son wants to get a drink that gives free souvenir Porg Mug.
We were the first walk-in standing bar customers. Reserved sitting seats are 16 days wait. Wife and I shared a flavorful Jabba Juice. For a moment, the Cantina was all ours.
We have to pay 20 dollars each on top of the Genie plus 20 dollars to skip the lines for the Rise of the Resistance Ride. So, we joined the 2 hours line, and used the $60 on food. Epic experience has a price.
It started to drizzle. By the time the Rise of the Resistance was over, serious rain began. We had to buy ponchos. Turned out to be a smart idea. An hour later, rain was pouring crazy. It’s ponchos and umbrellas everywhere.
Genie plus 20 dollars fast pass is a must have when one only gets a day to finish all their favorite rides. Hardly any wait. Easy breezy. No stress. Problem, so much time in between rides. So, it’s catching up on missed foods like Turkey Legs, Churros, Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese Sandwich.
We finished all our must-rides: Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, Space Mountain, Pirates of the Caribbean, Matterhorn Bobsleds, Haunted Mansion and Indiana Jones. Can’t believe we did a lot.
Jack and Sally live characters of The Nightmare Before Christmas are new at the Haunted Mansion. Coolest couple.
Disney Staff confirmed, no parades and fireworks because of the rain. Around 7:20 P.M., we decided to head to our hotel. Just close to the exit, an announcement was made, Sleeping Beauty Wintertime Enchantment will begin.
A couple in front of me held each other under an umbrella as they watched Sleeping Beauty Castle lit up. Everyone was just trying to catch a piece of joy and magic, regardless of circumstances. I was witnessing Hope. I was seeing me in all of them.
We left Disneyland. No fireworks. Just lots and lots of rain. By the time we rode our Lyft car, our shoes were drenched wet. It wasn’t the Disney experience I anticipated, but it was the Disney magic I was given.
I feel blessed and grateful for the gift of Christmas experiences with Family like no other, not just for a day but for an entire week.
I honestly forgot I am living in the midst a new Surge. I forgot their is still the Pandemic. Or maybe I decided to move on, ignore the bad news and just enjoy life again.
Then I watched the T.V. news when I got home. Hundreds of Holiday flights cancelled because many airline staff are infected with the Omicron Variant. Passengers had no choice but to miss Christmas with their love ones. The COVID sick had to celebrate Christmas alone because they had to be on quarantine isolation. Los Angeles has tripled its new positives cases in 24 hours. Omicron is now the dominant strain in the U.S. in less than 30 days. America is close to 200,000 new cases of COVID per day.
One bad news after the other, but I’m done. I turned off the T.V. news. Haven’t opened my iPhone News Feeds for more than a week now. It felt good to feel detached from the negative news. It felt nice to feel calm, positive, happy and hopeful. Mindful Filtering.
Family and I visited two theme parks. Everyone in that park are like us. No fears. No social distancing. No worries of touching contaminated surfaces. No disinfectants and frequent hand washing. We screamed when we ride roller coasters as loud as we want. We ate without mask indoors and outdoors. We laughed, talked and smiled at each other, with or without mask. No one was asked of their vaccine status. No one was asked about recent COVID test. Everyone were willing to take COVID infection risks to enjoy life and have fun again.
For one day, People chose to forget all the bad shit we are forced to witness and absorb. For one day, a magical place allowed us to be ourselves as free and as playful as we can be. For one day, we were lucky to experience a Christmas that is unreal and extraordinary.
In less than a week, we all will say goodbye to 2021. It wasn’t perfect. Actually, it was crazy chaotic. It is however also beautiful, incredible and surprising.
I just wished there were no regrets, but it has a few. Perhaps, 2022 will be kinder, and I get to over turn a regret into a new beginning.
Love and forgiveness. Happiness and Peace. Family and Family the way it was. Hope and Miracles. Life and Living. Surrender and a giant leap of Faith.
Woke up at 4 A.M. to avoid traffic. I was all psyched up that I could drive 5 hours straight to L.A.
Detour. Son wants to visit a Walmart by Paso Robles. Oh, my Gosh! We entered an out of nowhere road surrounded by thick Fog and total darkness. I can’t see anything.
I felt a sudden hot flush at 37 degrees cold, panicking. Worried of hitting another car or crashing on a tree. Scared of falling off the ditch. Google Map gone. No Phone internet service. We’re lost.
Instant happy turned instant stress.
Wife warned, “Next time, you and your Son need to talk and plan where you both want to go.” She’s pissed. I’m pissed. He’s pissed. Hilarious battle of the most pissed.
Fog cleared. Madness cleared. However, Mr. Excited Driver suddenly felt very sleepy.
My eyes were shutting down involuntarily that it was too dangerous to drive further. So I stopped by a gas station and slept.
1 hour nap. Refreshed. It’s Daybreak. I’m all ready for take two. Wife update, “Another hour to get to Walmart Paso Robles. This is expected when we have to stop to visit places.” This time, my head was clear, my heart, calm as I replied, “Okay, got it. Driving to Paso Robles.”
Son, tone and mood jumped from disappointed to excited as he heard, “Driving to Paso Robles.”
We’re all back on happy mode as quickly as the weather shifted.
Paso Robles Walmart was nice.
Son got Limited Edition Reese’s Cereals and BMW Hot Wheels Car Series collectibles. Smiling all happy, he said, “Bro, we don’t see this in our Walmart. Glad we went here.”
Always wondered what Cambria looks like. It’s a famous stop over among Road Trippers. Turns out it’s close to Paso Robles. Second detour.
Moonstone Beach is Cambria’s coastline treasure.
Distance Landscape with Ocean View, not as dramatic as Carmel and Big Sur beaches along California Highway 1, but up close, Moonstone Beach shines beautifully in its simplest details.
Hidden and camouflage by the sand, are ethereal gems called Moonstones.
I didn’t Google in advance what Moonstones looked like so I gathered some random stones, hoping one of them was a Moonstone.
Moonstones incorporates abundance, fertility, love, and renewal. Definitely, I needed all of them.
Cambria’s Seaside Village is quaint Country and laid back Coastal fusion.
Seemingly untouched by modernism, Cambria is a very relaxing escape from the busy city life.
A Christmas Tree stands by the porch. It gets merry and bright when it sees visitors. When visitors leave, it gets sad and lonely. It feeds on Joy. It thrives on adventure. So, it tries to dazzle in glitter, decors and colors to draw passersby. Most of the time, it works. It becomes the most wonderful it can be for others. It gives. No expectations except a moment of People’s time.
Meet Frogman. He was cursed for taking away Christmas from the Villagers. The only way to break the curse is for him to give back the true meaning of Christmas. Till today, he is searching for that meaning.
Can we help Frogman discover the meaning of Christmas?
I thought that was it, back to interstate 5 for L.A., but no, destiny wasn’t done with its fun and surprises yet. It’s Christmas Time and it’s being generously giving.
Wife mentioned, “16 more minutes drive and it’s Morro Bay. “ I asked, “What’s in Morro Bay? Any beach there?”
Turns out there is a beach called Morro Rock Beach, and the town has lots of thrift shops that we all are curious to check. So, third detour happened. Third Christmas surprise happened.
All I want this Christmas is more happy times and experiences with my Family. And though Christmas Day is tomorrow. I’m already enjoying my Christmas presents. Joy has come. Love has come. Even Peace and calmness outdid themselves.
God gave me more than what my wish list can contain or what I believe are possible.
Merry Christmas to all and Happy Holidays.
“Dream, Imagine, Hope and Believe. They are free. They are possible. They can surprise and amaze. Okay, time to open your presents and tell your stories.”
December is speeding towards Christmas. Christmas is sprinting towards New Year. Then, 2021 is gone. No Rewind. No take two. It’s over. What was given or not given can’t be undone.
Christmas dilemma? Finding the right gift that is both personal and special. Many will give up on the challenge and just buy something convenient at the Malls or Costco. But some, will make an effort to do their research, care and diligence.
TIME, LOVE and HAPPINESS.
What is it really we want more than anything?
Isn’t it more quality time? Is it more happiness? Is it more unconditional love? All? Everything?
Where do we find these gifts? How do we contain them long enough to wrap them?
How do we express love in ways a person can actually touch, feel, embrace, experience and remember in their lifetime?
Every Christmas, Wife would ask, “What do you want for Christmas. My answer is always the same, “Happiness.” Her response, “Seriously? What do you want?” I am being very serious, but to make it easy and still interesting, my usual answer is, “Just surprise me.”
Truth is, things are just things to me. When the newness is gone, it becomes what it is, a thing. And things are easy to forget. But what I can’t forget are the gesture, the moment, the excitement, the kindness, the experience, the smile, the love and happiness that went with the gift giving.
I remember the feelings, and hope with all my heart that they get to be recaptured. I may have forgotten the many presents I have received since I was a child, but I have not forgotten the way they made me feel with the person who gave them to me.
Personalized Gift Giving sounds complicated? It’s not. It seems like it’s a lot of work. It’s not. For most, people already have given clues of what they want for Christmas. If we heard them, if we listened, they’ve said it already several times.
I wanted to spend my Family Christmas 2021 in a Theme Park. I wanted it to be festive. I wanted it to be so magical that literally all my worries, stress and heartaches will disappear in thin air. My Son calls it, “Wasting Money.” I call it, “Unforgettable Experience.”
Perhaps it’s wasting money, but we can’t really take our money to our graves, right? But we can die happy and content knowing we have lived the way we wanted to live. We’ve shared what we hope to share, “Magical Moments.”
Where to find max fun, joy and magic of Christmas? Where to find amazing time, love and happiness? Disneyland is an impossibility. People have booked and made reservations many months ahead because of COVID crowd limits. Universal Studious and Knott’s Berry Farm are my other options. Haven’t decided yet. Could be a last minute surprise. Could be Christmas to a Beach Town we’ve never been before. Could be where we always feel at home.
I made my wish. I texted Santa of what I want for Christmas. Will it come true? I don’t know but I want to believe that it will.
Life is too short to postpone what the heart wants today. Realistically, not everyone will make it to next year’s Christmas. So, why not make this Christmas the best and most memorable of all Christmases? Take two while we can. Celebrate while we can. Give love while we can.
Joy is never a waste of time. Magic is real whether we’re 7 or 77. Love is always abundant and free but seems always out of stock, expensive or hard to give. We don’t have to beg for Love. We don’t have to be stringy on Happiness both for ourselves and those we care in this World.
My work weekend turned out great and very productive. Everyone’s happy. I was happy. Perfect!
Then I thought of writing. Inspiration eluded me like I have Scabies. My mind, blank and lethargic like I took too many Sleep Aid. The heart smiling but the brain apathetic.
It’s when I’m battling my inner Storms when inspiration explodes.
It’s when I’m sad and in pain when I get to create something beautiful that brings People joy and sunshine.
It’s when I’m imperfect and scared that perfection and bravery comes to life.
Am I okay? Am I a Masochist? Am I crazy? Am I a Deviant?
Am I cursed? Am I abnormal? Am I a Weirdo? Am I a Freak? What’s a few more names? What’s a few more labels?
Can I be happy and make everyone happy at the same time? Can I be happy and still be overflowing with creative imagination?
Can I ride both sides of the extremes in peace and harmony at one given point of time? Or does it always have to be one or the other?
One moment, many revelations. One memory, many lessons. One story, many complications.
“Artists that allow their world to fully materialize on canvas, images or pages of a book are often living a World of loneliness and isolation. They are often misunderstood. Their work are either so life like or out of this World incredible because every thought and emotion are expressed in all their rawness, pain and honesty. Everything is laid bare for People to judge, marvel or be afraid.”
Unfortunate events and suffering fuels my fire. Loneliness and isolation lights up every corner of my being. Heartbreak gives me the motivation to genuinely laugh with freedom and abandon.
The old Cypress Tree looked alone but not really. When one observes closely, 4 almost invisible wires provide the support it needs to survive the harshest of weather and nature. So, we’re not really that alone if we made it this far. There are People in the background no matter few and seemingly invincible that helped us go through life and its shits.
Foolish heart. Foolish me. Steve Perry’s Love Song was playing in my car stereo. It’s lyrics I knew too well.
“Foolish heart, hear me calling Stop before you start falling Foolish heart, heed my warning You’ve been wrong before Don’t be wrong anymore.”
First Fall, always terrifying. Succeeding Falls, less scarier than the previous. At some point, no more fear. At some point, we become Survival Pro. When Life happens, we take plunges, ready or not. It’s okay to scream on the way down, no one cares.
Sometimes, the heart can be stubborn and repeats the same wrongs. And that’s okay. Humility and Wisdom in repeated imperfections. Value and Appreciation for layered scars of hard work. Beauty in pain. Creative discovery in times of deep longing.
Better than movie is real life. We go to theaters to be entertained for 2 hours but real events entertained us throughout our waking hours.
Let’s be honest. Don’t we miss President Trump’s entertaining headlines handling of the Pandemic from the time of initial attack of COVID on American soil in 2020 to the attack on Democracy with Insurrection of 2021? I do. Very much.
And yes, the Stock Market was at its best and exciting performance when he was the President. It was the perfect time to get rich quick when many stocks were heading to the moon. Meme stocks like GameStop and AMC made many instant Millionaires. It was the peak of Pump and Dump. Nope, not one of the Millionaires.
Okay, I am Pro-Vaccine. I believe me and those who got fully vaccinated had been and will be saved from serious COVID Illness, Hospitalization and Death. And thanks to President Biden aggressive campaign with vaccination, many maybe spared from the new variant concern, the Omicron.
“Maybe” because Omicron Variant wasn’t a consideration and possibility when the current batch of COVID vaccines were made. It’s an “if” and “may” work guessing game for now till we really see full blown widespread Omicron replacing Delta in the next 3-5 months.
In less vaccinated areas, Omicron will take hold. Winter to Spring 2022 cluster surges will close movie theaters and some businesses again. Some Cities will have a repeat of overwhelmed Hospitals and Emergency Systems. Real life fear and horror will outdo any horror movie to be released in 2022 in communities Omicron will choose as its epicenter hub.
First case of Omicron already in California, but the only reason America knew about it was because the Person was very pro-active in reporting travel history and for being tested specific for Omicron. How many will do that?
We will have undetected cases of Omicron because either People are not aware they are infected or will not bother to be tested. Contact tracing is no longer being done for the usual Delta, but only for the Omicron, but who determines which specimen needs special test to identity if it’s Omicron or Delta unless it becomes a universal standard protocol? How many Laboratories in the Country have the fancy device and trained Professionals to detect Omicron?
By the time Omicron detection is widely available, it has been passed around thousands and thousands of times as evidence by a sudden steady outburst of outbreaks that is Omicron Variant dominated.
We will hear and read more confusing stories in the next several weeks both from Experts and People pretending to be Experts.
Exactly, during these times Omicron will swiftly infiltrate many communities in America and the World, just like Delta did. Recent History will repeat itself.
As I said, real life is better than the movies whether it’s Comedy, Drama, Action, Horror, War or Fiction.
Early part of 2022 from Winter to Spring will have lots of surprises and shockers. Definitely, it will be entertaining. A must-watch year for both the predictable and the unexpected.
Coming Soon in Real Life near you: Omicron World Takeover 2022
“Some days I forget COVID still exist or that it can be life threatening. Possible COVID patients has been an everyday normal work flow to me that it has become ordinary. It has become like any other infectious disease. Doesn’t bother me anymore. No fear made me live normally again. It’s been like that for many months now. I’m sure, many feel the same way.”
Some get lost on purpose to find themselves. Some get lost to gain back the World that was taken away from them. Some get lost because they are lost.
I requested 10 days off work, but only got 2 days of opportunity to be lost. I thought a few hours wasn’t enough, but it turned out it was just the right amount of time to feel content , connected and restored.
Long time ago, a ship full of blown glass sank close to Davenport Beach during a storm. Polished Glass Collectors come to this beach to dig their treasures. I saw two families digging that afternoon. My Treasure was the beach itself. Besides, I knew a beach where I don’t have to dig Polished Glass, I just picked them up on the sand surface as I walk.
Last day of Freedom. Wife stayed in the car, while I ventured to Laguna Creek Beach. I didn’t know if I wanted to do a long hike or just walk a bit by the beach. I didn’t even know my destination was Laguna Creek Beach until I decided to park where there were less cars by the side of the highway.
Standing a few feet from the Ocean, I decided to go for quiet isolation. Behind the cove on my right side looked secluded, so I walked towards it.
At the corner of my eye, I spotted a Nudist, so I kept walking forward. Then, just behind a huge boulder of rock, I spotted what looked like a secluded beach. When I reached it, another Nudist was already there. So, I back down a bit and found a small space with rock formations that separates me from the World of other People. It was just the right comfortable isolated space to be alone.
I took off my shirt for some Sun, closed my eyes and just listened to the Waves and everything around me. I took deep breathes to inhale all things good, and exhaled all things negative.
The scent of the air was a mix of fresh Ocean salt and faint sweet Cannabis. Not a surprise, Marijuana smell is very common in Outdoor California. Made me even more relaxed and chilled.
I can feel the wonderful warmth of the Sun soothing my skin. I imagined I was glowing. Perhaps I was. I was blissfully lost. Glad and grateful to be lost.
I found me in my own simple, dreamy, naive, peaceful little World. I was in my sanctuary. I was enjoying coziness in my safe, happy place. I savored every moment down to the last second.
The crashing waves and the weather elements eventually won. A big piece of the rock fell off revealing the beauty and vulnerability within. I saw and appreciated its entirety. I was thankful that it allowed me to observe it in its fragile, naked state.
It welcomed me, a stranger in its World without fear, paranoia and hesitation. Complete trust, a rarity today. We sat next to each other silent. We didn’t need any words to relate. We understood each other well. We love the same Ocean. We dreamt of similar hopes. That’s all that matters.
We all wander. Some for adventure. Some for answers. Others to feel lost in a World where we make sense, and things make sense. Strange? Haven’t we all been living strangely?
My family's unwavering belief in me makes me feel that I can do anything, be anything. This blog is about the people that made a difference in my life and the many journeys we made together. Because of them,I get to dream again...and those dreams, they remind me each day that life is a gift and a blessing. A blessing that is full of goodness, joy and hope.