not all those who wander are lost


Thursday, December 7, 2017


POST # 289


I would be hard pressed to remember if I have ever spent any two-week period in my life when I have enjoyed so much laughter. Why?  Because during this time, I have had the good fortune to be a guest at the Stardust Sanctuary Farm, here in Western Belize. This is the home of my dear friends Guy and Pauline. 
Anyone that has had,  or will have the opportunity to share time with these two fine individuals can't help but be left with a profound sense of gratitude for having made their acquaintance. That has certainly been my experience, and it's confirmed by a former "Workaway" guest named Sara. (See below).

Left by Workawayer (Sara) for host
Pauline and Guy's place is absolutely beautiful and they are wonderfully gracious hosts. I stayed in the apartment in the Villa (the main community house) and it was impeccably clean with lots of natural light. A lot of essentials like towels, bedding, and even shampoo and soap were provided. When I got there Lily gave me a tour of the property, told me how to use various plants for medicinal purposes, and made me a delicious omlette from eggs she gathered that morning. Lily has lived in the area all her life, so if you have any questions about Belize - she's the one you should ask.

The main community house has a shared kitchen and living space, along with a screened sitting area - which is a fantastic place to share a meal in the evening before a dip in the salt-water pool.

Pauline won't let you do any work you don't feel comfortable doing - but any help is deeply appreciated. There are tons of building projects going on and guests come and go all the time - you'll never be bored! Everyone I met who lived full-time on the property was incredibly friendly and helpful.

One thing I will say: Be prepared for a lot of humidity and scorching hot days. Everyone was sure to remind me to drink plenty of water - you will sweat buckets just sitting down, so be careful. If you need to do any physical work, the best time is to do it early in the morning. The bugs weren't too bad for me unless I was walking around in the taller grass. During the the hottest times of the day, I stayed in the shade or in the pool if there was an overcast. Wear sunscreen! If you're sensitive to sound when you're sleeping, bring ear plugs. You'll be in the jungle - which gets really loud at night due to frogs, insects, howler monkeys, and birds - but that is all part of the experience! 

Belize has a terrible telecommunications system, so access to the internet is frustratingly slow, or non-existent. If you need to check your email while you're away, there are a few resorts nearby that have decent internet.

Overall - I had a wonderful experience and highly recommend staying with Pauline and Guy. I left feeling like I had found life-long friends (OK, I didn't even want to leave).

In fact, Sara was so impressed, she has made a return visit. Guy and Pauline seem to have that effect on many individuals. They're fun to be around. But like most good things in life, this current visit will soon come to a close, even though the good memories will be everlasting.
Once again, it's time for The Thoughtful Wanderer to be on his way to the next adventure, but just before I go, here is one final story. Yesterday, as I was bike riding back home from San Antonio, the town that is 1.75 miles from here, I had a thought pop into my mind. That is, I bet that I could travel ten times that distance in Vancouver, or perhaps anywhere else in North America, and in spite of the fact that I would encounter a larger number of people on that hypothetical journey, I sincerely doubt that I would experience even 10% of the smiling, happy faces that I saw on yesterday's bike ride. That tells you everything you need to know about the locals. 

                              BEAN FARMER PAUL                               

living a life of simple acceptance,
The Thoughtful Wanderer

Tuesday, November 28, 2017


POST # 288

Earlier this year, when I was in Bend, Oregon, I was walking back to my house sit location when two young lads on bicycles went riding past me.  I'm guessing that they were probably around 10 years old, give or take a year.  Anyhow, as they slowly rolled by, they happened to be in a conversation that I  overheard.  It went as follows:

Boy #1: "Desperate situations require desperate measures."
Boy # 2: "What?"
Boy #1: "Desperate situations require desperate measures."
Boy # 2: "What does that mean?"
Boy #1:  "I don't know."

Well I can't tell you just how much that made me chuckle, and I've told this story to a few others that also enjoyed a belly laugh.  Boy #1 and Boy #2 have no idea how much laughter has resulted from their little chat.

The reason I mention it in this blog post is that it involves a tooth of mine.  It wasn't really a desperate situation, and the measure which followed wasn't either, but here is the story in any event.
Some time ago, a filling dropped out of one of my teeth, and I managed to put off doing anything about it until yesterday. It didn't hurt, so it was easy to delay the inevitable trip to the dentist.   But as the tooth began to turn grey, I decided that it was time to act, in spite of the non desperate nature of the situation.
Having been to Belize recently, and knowing how reasonably priced dental work is,  I decided to book another visit to see my friends Guy and Pauline, and while there, get my tooth repaired.

So I'm back in Belize for the third time this year, and yesterday I met Meg Ryan, or as she is known around these parts, Dr. Megan Ryan, my new dentist.   She did a brilliant job for a fraction of the charge in Canada, and as I mentioned to her when I was there, it was the first time in my entire life that I was so relaxed, that I could have fallen asleep in the dentist's chair. That's how gentle she was. I'd certainly go back for another visit in the future.



So with that little chore out of the way, I can relax, and continue enjoying my Belize visit. 

Living a life of simple acceptance,

The Thoughtful Wanderer

Tuesday, November 21, 2017


POST #287

No matter how many times I read this cartoon, it makes me laugh, in spite of the fact that it appears that the man has just suffered a heart attack.  The wisdom here is that none of us really know which moment will be our last, and that's all the more reason to appreciate the time we have, and if possible, fill it with as much laughter as we can.  I think that's pretty good advice for anyone. It would be a rare day indeed when I couldn't find something to laugh about, and for that I am grateful. 

Now if the above cartoon isn't enough to put a smile on your face then perhaps the following infographic can help.  It illustrates the odds of you even being born in the first place, something I never gave much or any thought to, until it was mentioned to me some years ago by my dear friend, Guy.  Knowing how extremely thin the odds are of being born should help a person handle some of the challenges that life always throws in the way.  I've learned so many things from my almost five year friendship with Guy,  but if I only retained this amazing fact about how extremely rare it is that I was even born, it's enough.

Finally for today's very short blog post, and seeing as I have a bit of a reputation for being "the date guy," today's date always reminds me of two days in my  history that were both very memorable for different reasons.  I may have mentioned them before, but hey, what the hell.  On November 21st, 1978, I flew to Antarctica, and then 20 years later on November 21st, 1998 I got married.  The flight to Antarctica wasn't that much shorter than the marriage, and somehow I managed to survive both events.  It all seems so very long ago now.

living a life of simple acceptance,

The Thoughtful Wanderer
PS: I may or may not be in a wifi area for my next two scheduled posts on November 28th, and then again on December 7th but I will try my best, and if unsuccessful, then there should be plenty to talk about on December 14th.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017


POST # 286

(screen shot from google maps)

The title says, "8th VISIT TO THE MUD HUT?" but I wasn't really there in person this past weekend even though it felt as though I had been.  The reason?  My friends, Guy, Pauline, and Sara had made an unscheduled visit, which was akin to throwing a fox into the hen house in light of recent online rumours (see essay below).  Fortunately,  they were able to share their experiences with me via Facetime, and even though it's not the same as being there, it was the next best thing.  I was more than happy to offer my support.  As one can imagine, Guy had a particularly challenging time, seeing as the mud hut had been his home for many years. His scientific work has continued to follow the evidence where ever that evidence has led, and as a result, the character assassination that he has been subjected to has been tremendous.  In spite of all of that, he continues to speak truth to power.  I imagine very very few individuals could continue this lonely truth telling journey but somehow he has managed to do so.  Perhaps if our world had a few more truth tellers like Guy, we wouldn't now find ourselves in the predicament that we are all in.  But here we are.

In this day and age, with Facebook,Twitter and goodness knows what else, it's very easy to start an online rumour, and just like that, the rumour becomes fact.  A recent article in the New Yorker titled,
"Why Facts Don't Change Our Minds" might help the reader understand this phenomenon.

This whole business of rumours got me thinking about the 1938 radio program in which Orson Wells read "The War of the Worlds", which apparently at the time caused panic among some of the population, because they thought that the Earth was being invaded by Martians.  If the population could be fooled all those years ago, it's very easy to see why the masses of people can grab onto any "truth" nowadays especially if it is uttered by a celebrity or an "official."  Facts don't seem to matter any longer.

One only has to do a bit of digging to find the truth, which isn't that hard to do, but I guess most people don't want to make the time.   The evidence is out there, and Guy continues to present it to anyone who cares to read/listen to him.  It has cost him dearly in more ways than one can imagine.  I will continue to support his truth telling efforts.  It is a privilege to count him as a dear friend.

I can highly recommend the essay below as well as the embedded links, which was posted at his website, Nature Bats Last at

All’s Fair … ?

~ I would never betray a friend to serve a cause. Never reject a friend to help an institution. Great nations may fall in ruin before I would sell a friend to save them.
~ Edward Abbey

Contemporary “Western” culture is based primarily on opinion, not evidence. In such a culture, celebrities tend to be respected more than scientists, at least by the masses. In such a culture, the only thing deemed better than worshipping a public figure is destroying his or her reputation.

I’ve been assailed with defamation, character assassination, libel, and slander for nearly two decades. It’s ratcheting up. Based upon tidbits of online discussion taken out of context, articles have been written accusing me of terrible acts. In every case, I’ve shared accurate information with the authors of the hit pieces before they were made public. The information I provided was unethically ignored. The ensuing, evidence-free essays contained plenty of judgment, gossip, rumor, and innuendo, as befitting celebrity culture. They were believed without question by the unthinking masses.
This evidence-rejecting mentality is a huge problem with the current United States government. We can see the problems and predicaments that arise from the rejection of evidence. They are self-reinforcing and perpetuate a downward spiral into a deepening state of ignorance and bile.

The customary response to my work is fear. Fear is instinctual. Serious work is required to overcome it. Most people push away reality, instead choosing capitulation to the dominant, willfully ignorant paradigm of hope mixed with fear. Thus are sheep cornered by wolves.
A recent example of judgment, gossip, rumor, and innuendo involved Serena Marie Raphael McPherson, who is quite a clever piece of work. She asked me to participate in her online kink fantasies, including BDSM and a Shibari video of her. She even shared how to experience a “safe” rape fantasy. I was unaware of Shibari or rape fantasy until Serena introduced these concepts to me.
In other words, Serena taught me some serious kink. Then she began kink-shaming me. Not surprisingly, her lies have been accepted without question by the majority. As an example of her cleverness, college dropout Serena apparently broke no laws in orchestrating this character assassination.
I was recently asked why I would associate with somebody who admits to performing Shibari, a Japanese form of erotic art. Yes, really. Because in a patriarchal society, one is expected to negatively judge a person for their art. I’ll leave such judgment to patriarchs while I defend the attendant freedom of expression.
After nearly a year of online conversations that were playful, loving, and inspirational for us both, Serena carefully edited a few choice conversations to make it appear she was resisting my forceful advances. In fact, she requested my playful “advances” and she never resisted them. She then shared the correspondence strategically — something she has done with previous online partners, as I discovered later — and then began crying foul play.
Early in our conversations, I was warned about her. I naively proceeded as if she was being honest. Unlike Serena, “all about the money” Carolyn Baker, and many others too numerous to list here, I’ve so far not publicly shared our private messages. Such activity is not only unethical, it’s abusive and dangerous. That hasn’t bothered Serena and her nasty little cabal as they have selectively shared carefully edited bits of our online communication with numerous parties. Perhaps soon I’ll follow their lead, thus acting with the same impunity as Serena’s list of backstabbers: Baker, Derrick Jensen, and many others. If these former colleagues and friends are giddily unconcerned about my wellbeing, why do I remain concerned about theirs? Apparently Jensen is accustomed to Serena sharing her sexting with him from their previous online interactions. If this is the case, and I’ve seen no evidence to the contrary, then Jensen is the consummate hypocrite in singling me out for character assassination.

Less than a week before her engagement to Jeff Cole, while still married to a man who goes by the name of Shannon Phillips, Serena was asking if she could move to Belize to be with me. My partner Pauline offered her and her husband lodging in exchange for farm and veterinary work. In fact, Pauline began to build extra lodging in anticipation of their move to the homestead in Belize.
Pauline and I were stunned at Serena’s surprise engagement, which suggests that she had been communicating in depth for some time with her fiancĂ©. Serena was communicating with Jeff “Bobcat” Cole long enough to develop a “serious” relationship that might lead to marriage while having live chats with us and her husband about moving to Belize. She was playing both sides, probably in partnership with her husband Shannon.

Ultimately, Serena called me her teacher, among other things, but she had no need to interact with me. She did so out of pure desire. Whether her motivation was attention (sexual or otherwise), celebrity, or just to denigrate a minor public figure, the fact is she wasn’t relying on me for a grade, a job, or anything else (except loving attention). We were consenting adults in a victimless situation. In playing the childlike victim of online sex talk, Serena and those she has influenced diminish actual victims. Many people defending her as a victim fail to realize that she’s a perpetrator, not a victim, in this case. Her actions have led to accusations of felonious activity by me, as well as promises to murder me. I find myself in the usual position of attempting to defend activities about which I’m not guilty. Similarly ungrounded accusations were made in 2014 and contributed to the demise of a relationship that had persisted more than 30 years, as I’ve indicated in a prior essay in this space.
Let me be clear, for the truly dim masses who believe the accusations launched my way: I’m not a child rapist. Firstly, no child is involved. Secondly, there has been no physical contact: We never shared a continent, much less bodily fluids. The accusations, which endanger my life and the life of my partner, are patently false.
The Catch-22 of all this nonsense is that anyone defending me appears to be a mindless cult member, and anyone not supporting Serena appears to be a card-carrying member of the dominant culture (misogynist, straight, white, privileged male). Any woman not supporting her is “Stockholm” or worse.
Based on several stints as an expert witness in the judicial system, I know that most people believe whatever they hear first. Again, evidence is largely irrelevant in most cases characterized as two-sided.
My partner knew about every aspect of my relationship with Serena. As I’ve indicated, Pauline even invited her and her husband Shannon to move to this property in Belize.
I’m sorry this situation developed, although I’m not apologizing to Serena or anybody else for my actions. An apology is called for, although I doubt Serena nor any member of her cabal delivers.
Sex is a part of life and love. We clearly need more love on this planet. As British philosopher Bertrand Russell pointed out, “To fear love is to fear life, and those who fear life are already three parts dead.” Given the writings of the people who fell for Serena’s lies, I’d guess Russell would declare them three parts dead.
What we do not need is the promulgation of lies, unsupported by evidence. This, unfortunately, is the mendacious approach adopted by Serena, Baker, Jensen, Sliwa, Cory Morningstar, Forrest Palmer, Lierre Keith, Nicole Foss, Keith Harmon Snow, and the many people who’ve adopted nonsensical, evidence-free writings as factual.
Any legitimate journalist would contact the subject of a critical piece of writing before publication. There are no longer any people I respect in the long list of misguided writers involved in this case.
Michael Jon Sliwa is a particularly disappointing case, although not a surprising one. I inspired Sliwa to chase a different carrot, with integrity. Then I gave him the tools to do so, including teaching him how to open a can with a canopener (when I met this 44-year-old mama’s boy he literally could neither open a can nor make a cup of tea). His response to my love: evidence-free character assassination with no integrity.
 I wonder: Did defaulting on thousands of dollars in credit-card debt finally catch up to him? What was his price?
Unencumbered by principles, Sliwa claims I have power over Serena, and by extension everyone else in the (nonexistent) near-term human extinction “community.” This is unsurprisingly illogical from somebody as unaffected by evidence as Sliwa (not to mention Baker and many others seriously afflicted with the dominant culture). Does Madonna have power over her listeners? Only the few juveniles who willingly give her power. As a longtime anarchist and adult, I’d be insulted by claims Madonna has power over me. And I’m not surprised Sliwa and many others point to Madonna and me as authorities with power.
Sliwa has yet again followed my lead in tuning out of Facebook. It’s been suggested his wife caught him spending a bit too much time intimately chatting with Serena on Facebook. I don’t know or care, and nothing about Sliwa or Serena surprises me at this point.
The mistakes I made were falling in love and trusting people. I’d do it all over again, given the opportunity. Not with Serena, of course, nor the cast of characters promulgating her lies.
Indeed, the recent suggestions that my partner and I are creating a pedophile ring in Central America are quite dangerous. People in this part of the world have killed for much less.
Onto the important issues. Yes, collapse of industrial civilization still beckons. Yes, human extinction is locked in by 2026. No, these false accusations from liars and fools do not falsify scientific evidence.
Based on hundreds of personal observations, there are people who accept and understand the evidence underlying my message, and then choose to integrate the message into their lives. They pursue love. With open, broken hearts, these people live fully every day. They seek truth and set aside pettiness. Clearly, none of the people attacking me have accepted my message. Rather, these money-grubbing liars have chosen personal power over principle, mediocrity over excellence, and indifference over love. As such, they reflect and model the dominant culture.
I’m emotionally torn, as you might expect. I’m attempting to pursue my message of living fully during my final days. And I’m also a fan of justice, so I’ve been working with a top-notch law firm to counter the defamation.
There’s no money in extinction, but there is plenty of power to be garnered by defaming me. I know no way to stop unethical or illegal acts without legal action. Because such a step is expensive, I created a crowdfunding campaign in pursuit of justice in this case. Initial steps included an opportunity for some offending parties to redact their libelous blog posts and apologize. Each offender chose instead to engage in a legal battle that ultimately ended up with all my remaining money, and much of Pauline’s money, in the bank accounts of attorneys. As I’ve done repeatedly during my life, I have pursued right action at great cost. The pursuit continues, and I seek your support along the path of justice.
Update, two days later: I’ve been blocked by all guilty parties on the leading social-media platform. They can’t handle the truth. And they want to hide it from you.

living a life of simple acceptance,

The Thoughtful Wanderer

Tuesday, November 7, 2017


POST # 285

Lost for words today, I will instead post a selection of recently captured images taken this month.




living a life of simple acceptance,


The Thoughtful Wanderer

Saturday, October 28, 2017


POST # 284

Prescience: noun:  knowledge of things before they exist or happen; foreknowledge; foresight.


On numerous occasions throughout my life, too numerous to write about on this short blog, I have imagined an event before it existed.  Earlier this week was another one of those times.

I was coming to the end of my bike ride, the first one I had done in quite a while.  As I always do, I exit off of the main road and into the local shopping centre, just to get away from the traffic. Prior to rolling around the corner of the grocery store, I had this strong feeling that I would see Max, and lo and behold, there he was, along with his owner Richard, and Richard's friend Howard.  In fact, I had imagined all three of them, and then, there they were with Max wagging his tail, and Richard and Howard each having what looked like a breakfast burrito.  Max must have been happy to see me, because my arrival was enough to tear him away from the smell of the burritos.

I hadn't seen this trio for quite some time, and because I didn't have any pressing engagements, (like I EVER have any pressing engagements), I sat down and had a wonderful visit with them.

Max is a magnificent bonehead, and I did have an offer earlier this year to take care of him for a couple of weeks while his owners went to California,  but had to turn them down, as I was already booked for that time slot.  Oh well, such is the life of a house/pet sitter.  Perhaps in the future, I'll have another opportunity.  In the meantime I'll look forward to our chance meetings during my daily ride.


It's now officially Autumn, and it has been for about 5 weeks.  It's without a doubt my favourite season of the year.  I honestly don't know why and I certainly don't spend much time pondering the reason(s), but rather I just enjoy it while it lasts.   This might be the only subject that my dear old mom and I disagreed upon.  She preferred Spring, and the reason she said that she didn't like Autumn was, in her words, "everything is dying." Be that as it may, I still prefer Autumn.

Here are some photos that help reinforce just why it's my favourite season.

And finally, to finish off today's rather short blog, I'll attach a link to a movie trailer for a movie called, "A Dog's Purpose."  I am currently reading the book that the movie is based on, and I can highly recommend it for any dog (bonehead) lovers out there.

If this trailer doesn't bring a tear to your eye, then I can't imagine what would.  Enjoy.

living a life of simple acceptance,

The Thoughtful Wanderer

Saturday, October 21, 2017


POST # 283


I wasn't quite sure where I wanted to start today, so when faced with this quandary the best thing for this furball lover to do is to begin with, what else but another furball? Such a handsome devil, even though I have already forgotten his name.  He was observed a couple of days ago at the local animal shelter, snoozing away contentedly next to his buddy "dressed" in black.  I can't imagine that he'll be housed here for very long.  Just look at this dude.  He's got that "waiting for a human lap" look all over his face.  If he were mine, I might decide to call him "Raccoon" because he certainly has the mask for it.

I've been in a reflective mood this morning, thinking about all of the different pets that I have had the pleasure to get to know and to care for over the past six years.  It's been a truly wonderful journey, and I am very fortunate to have travelled down this path.  I've lost track of the names of many of these critters, but they have all had an impact on me just the same.  Many are now gone, including Piper, Bob, Ziggy, Tika, Sadie, Breaker, Bella, Roxie, Snoop, and no doubt many more that I have lost touch with over the years.  Others such as Snowball, Savanna, Bezoar, Kalopani and Porkchop weren't housesit "customers" however they too are now deceased, but leave me with fond memories of our times spent together.  I wonder how many more I'll get to know as time passes?

All in all it's been a wonderful journey,  and I have really no complaints worth noting.  And for those who may not have read my original blogpost which was written exactly six years ago today, here it is, reprinted in full.




Lately it seems (and by lately I mean at least the past 3 years but probably a lot longer than that), I have become even more thoughtful than I am normally prone to being. And as far as being a wanderer, well, anyone who has known me for any length of time, would have to agree that there is a definate element of that in my personality.

So recently when I came up with the idea of producing a weekly blog, the first order of business was, "What on earth shall I name the thing?"
Eventually, after numerous ideas, I came up with this name, and once I had mulled it over for a day or two, it felt to me as though I really couldn't have made any other choice.

Another event which happened recently in my life was that I sold my sailboat which for the past almost 7 years, has been my primary residence and which was located in Vancouver Canada. So with the signing of a contract and some cash exchanging hands, I all of a sudden became homeless. That action certainly helped in aiding the wanderer in me, because now I have been forced to look elsewhere to find shelter out of the weather. Don't get me wrong though, I am very happy with the current situation as it was something I chose to do, and so already in less than a month, I have lived at two new locations, including my current one right here in Oregon. I have just spent three wonderful weeks on Orcas island in Washington, which was marvelous.
Maybe this is what becomes of an ageing world traveller. It won't last forever, nothing ever does, but for now, it's a simple lifestyle and one that fits me like a glove.

What has made this wandering easy and at the same time rewarding is the fact that I spend my time travelling from one place to the next, in order to take care of peoples' pets. Over the years, at least the past 10, I have had the good fortune to get to know a variety of new people and pets, and recently I decided to expand my horizons by joining an organisation which matches houses with housesitters. Now, in very short order I find myself booked right through until the end of January 2012.

I had hoped to be heading to Australia by the end of this year, at least that was the plan. But as it turns out, before that happens I will be heading north to an old home of mine, Dawson City in the Yukon. I said to a friend the other day, that if I keep heading north I will eventually be south. Dawson in the dead of winter can be brutally cold, and this year it may seem more so, seeing as I was expecting a beach somewhere, however it does have a magic of it's own and I am looking forward to the trip.

As far as the design and content of this blog goes, I expect it to change over time (and being the techno ludite that I am, it may take a while for me to work some things out, however this will be an evolution of sorts, and maybe someday in the future I'll look back at this blog and laugh at how simplistic it was.

OK, so that's about it for blog #1. Where things go from here is anyone's guess, especially mine, but I do look forward to producing a weekly entry, if for no other reason than to lay down a record for myself, as to what I have been up to.

Thanks for reading.

living a life of simple acceptance,

The Thoughtful Wanderer