My 5 Must Haves On A Deserted Island

I missed a Daily Prompt I wanted to do.

Okay, so I probably missed a few. But, I missed one in the last couple days. I don’t know how. I’m definitely slipping.

Anyway, the prompt was, “What 5 things are must haves with you on a deserted island?”

1. My trumpet.

Yeah, I haven’t played in a while, but I still remember how. I was pretty immersed in it. Had a band and played in a few others and everything. I miss those days. Anyway, point is, if I can’t listen to music, I damn well want to be able to create it. So, I’d take my trumpet.

2. A pet.

I’d need some form of companion. I think it would help my sanity massively to have a pet dog there with me. I don’t have one at the moment. I live in an apartment. But in the future, when I have my own place, I’ll have a dog for sure. I grew up with them. Love them. Man’s best friend. I’m assuming I can gather enough food for the both of us. He may even help with the hunting, if I take the right breed.

3. A hatchet.

You know that shit is gonna come in handy. Firewood needs chopping, branches for shelter need chopping, etc. Anyone read that novel, ‘Hatchet‘? … exactly.

4. Fishing reel.

Thinking practical now. Fruits and such are great, but meat is handy and I’d assume fishing would be easier than hunting. I at least have practice with that one.

5. Flint and steel.

I’ll want a campfire. Warmth, cooking, all that. And try starting a fire without a flint and steel. Tough work.

So that’s my list! What would you want to take on a deserted island with you?

Night Owl’s Are Wise… Coincidence?

I missed another Daily Prompt I wanted to do! It was a couple days ago. I noticed it, but I was at the beach house, sans computer internet, so I could not blog. First World problems, much?

The Prompt asked… 6:00 am: The best hour of the day, or too close to your 3:00 am bedtime?

Try, too close to my 5:59 am bedtime!

I am a definite night owl. I say I’m nocturnal. My friends say I’m a vampire.

Either way, really.

Let me put it this way…

It’s 2 am, and I just finished eating dinner.

I’m still unwinding.

I didn’t get home until just before midnight. I work as a soccer referee at the moment. So, a few nights a week I finish games at 10:30-ish, and make it home about midnight.

There’s also the case of, somehow, I am always most creative and get all my writing done at night. I think almost every single blog post you would have read by me, would have been written between 1 am and 7 am.

They say geniuses are night owls. Seriously! I read that… somewhere.

They say Leonardo Da Vinci only had two hours of sleep a day.

I don’t know who ‘they’ are, but they’re clearly on my side, so obviously ‘they’ know what they’re talking about.

Having said all that, I’m especially tired today. Goodnight, peeps!

Daily Prompt: Home Sweet Home

The Daily Prompt asks us today, “When you’re away from home, what person, thing, or place do you miss the most?”

To be completely honest, I love getting away from home. I am definitely a nomad at heart. I could travel the World seemingly aimlessly and be so blissful. The only thing I would miss are my closest friends and family. There’s a few connections there that I would crave. Connections are everything. They’re (I think) the basic meaning of life. Every connection you feel; that is true living. Whether it’s to a person or otherwise, though the personal interconnections that can be two way streets are the best kind. But, as much as I miss my regular connections when I’m away, I do love creating and experiencing new ones wherever I go. That’s really what energizes me. No doubt.

And yes, I love the connection I have with you guys, too. My blogosphere buddies are very special to me. And I missed you when I was on my hiatus. I’m happy to admit that.

(This was short. I may be back in a minute with another post in a different topic. Thanks for reading!)

Daily Prompt: Excitement

Today’s Daily Prompt asks us what we last got truly excited about.

I think the most excited I have been recently was a couple months ago when I was accepted into my writing course.

I had to produce a sample of writing for the process. I was none too confident about that. Then I got the thumbs up. Nice confidence booster.

But more importantly, I was pumped to be beginning the journey of achieving a dream. I had shirked my dreams for a while. I guess fear was the overriding factor. A little fear crumbled away that day. That’s something worth getting excited about.

And the course is going well, so the excitement not only remains, but even continues to grow. You all may just read something of mine one day.

You know, something that isn’t this blog…

Thanks for reading this, by the way. I appreciate it. as does my confidence and my writing-based excitement levels. You’re all awesome.

Just The One Regret…

I missed a few days in the blogsphere, but there was a Daily Prompt I wanted to address. This one asked – What’s your biggest regret? How would your life have been different if you’d made another decision?

I want to address this one, because journaling my thoughts is a good way to access them. And I believe in maintaining a completely honest and open approach to this blog. A vulnerable approach, even. And I may become a little vulnerable with this one. But I like that feeling.

I tend not to look at any past events as ‘regrets’. Those things to me are what I would generally refer to as ‘lessons’. Having said that, I made a decision once based on morals and not the heart. So, it was a lesson as well, but certainly the closest thing I have to an official regret. It was perhaps a little bit of what sparked my New Years Resolution to be more selfish. It’s a tricky one though, because although I have had the moral clash, I still stick by them and don’t know if I could turn on them, even if I had this chance over again.

The good news is, it is not necessarily irreversible. But we’ll get to that at the end.

About a year ago, last September, a friend was having a few drinks in the city for his birthday. I never caught up with the guy outside playing soccer with him, and he is a terrific bloke, so I wanted to. We weren’t playing on the same team anymore, so we never saw each other. It was a good chance to catch up.

I almost didn’t go. That night my housemate and I could barely be bothered going. It was all the way in the city, and we were feeling pretty lazy. We talked ourselves into it though. We did want to catch up with the guy.

We got there and the bouncer wouldn’t let us into the pub. It was a bit odd. We were dressed nice enough, and there were blokes basically wearing rags walking out of the pub while we stood there on the sidewalk.

We almost went home. We rang our mate and explained our predicament as we were walking back to the car. He said bollocks to that, he’d rather drag his mates out of the pub and go elsewhere to drink than send us home.

So we turned back around to meet him. While we were waiting for him and his crew to emerge from the establishment, one of his friends turned up. A very attractive woman. I forget how we knew we were looking for the same people, but we worked it out. That’s not the important part anyway.

Now, at first sight, I thought she was gorgeous, sure. And with first conversation I thought she was my kind of people. But I wouldn’t say I was hook, line and sinker straight off the bat. I think I’d assumed she was there with someone. And at that point, I wasn’t single, either.

Anyway, point is, I thought nothing of anything at this point. I wasn’t interested in meeting anyone. I hadn’t even bothered to shave!

We all went to another bar. A little dive joint. I really liked the place. We all ended up in an upstairs room, and  it was mostly just the birthday crew there.

I didn’t really know anyone except my housemate, so when he ended up talking to our mate with the birthday over in some corner of the bar, I was left kind of just floating. It wasn’t planned, but somehow this gorgeous lady and myself ended up seated next to each other, so we struck up a conversation.

Well, you hear people say things like “I’ve never met anyone like them before,” and “we were connected instantly like kindred spirits as if we’d known each other for forever.” I never bought into that crap. Damn, you hear people say that, too. Suffice to say, I had to stop myself from using those phrases later that night.

We got along instantly. We were on the same wavelength. It was strange. We seemed to be thinking the exact same thing at all times. We had the same sense of humour, and sense of, well, everything. We were so connected spiritually (for lack of a better word) that it really wasn’t until after we parted that I realised, “hey, she was absolutely beautiful, too.”

Bare with me as I try to explain it…

We had a lot of odd things in common. I don’t mean like, “oh, you’re left-handed too?” Nope, random connections. Like, she was born in the tiny town in England that my mum was born in. Her dad and I both started with degrees in Zoology and then leaped to teaching secondary science. (At that point I still was teaching.) One weird one, was when she likened something I said to sounding like a quote from a Jim Jarmusch film, when that week, I had finished writing a screenplay based on myself I had penned with Jim Jarmusch in mind. No joke.

Those are just a couple tidbits I remember. We spoke for a couple hours. She was basically the only person I spoke to all night. It was fascinating that we just seemed like the same people. We both learned a lot about each other in a very short time frame. And we wanted to. Which was weird. Ice-breaking conversations and small talk bores me to buggery. But this wasn’t like that at all. I don’t even know how to explain what it was actually like.

And now at the risk  of being cliche, I can honestly say I have never, and will never meet anyone like her, or that I connect with on the same level. I don’t see it as possible. I’ve met an awful lot of people, and that was… weird… different… amazing.

What happened? Well, we exchanged numbers and agreed to stay in touch. A few emails were sent. She shared her artwork and I shared some writing. But I couldn’t keep up the correspondence for more than a couple weeks in good conscience.

I was developing feelings for her. And I wasn’t single.

To be honest, I knew it was going to happen. And I knew I was going to stay faithful to my girlfriend of 18 months rather than follow my heart. Gee, sounds like an obvious decision now, doesn’t it? And my housemate knew I knew it, because I was freaking out that night.

After the party had finished and we all parted ways, my housemate and I made the short walk to China Town to grab some late-night dinner. I was jittery. Like, proper jittery. I felt sick. Sick with a mixture of excitement and a dilemma. I couldn’t handle having to make the decision of “if there’s something here with someone who is basically perfect for me, can I leave my girlfriend for her?” I never thought I would have to make a decision like that. I didn’t want to be that guy. I felt like I was betraying my girlfriend, simply by asking myself that question.

On a side-note, that’s why I remain single with absolutely no plan to start dating anyone. I realized there was actually something missing from all my other relationships. Something that actually existed and was obtainable. Something I hadn’t been able to qualify until that encounter. There was a connection there that my relationships had lacked. And now that I knew it existed, there was no way I could in good conscience enter into a relationship without knowing it was there.

Anyway, back to the dinner. I remember my housemate and I sitting in the Chinese restaurant, and I was just shaking. I never leave food on the table. Never. I think I had two mouthfuls. I was freaking out trying to work out what to do. My housemate said, “I have never seen you smile like that at any point. When you were talking to her, you seemed… right.”

And he was right. And although he wouldn’t encourage me to leave my girlfriend, I knew what he was getting at, and he was right about that, too.

But of course, I didn’t. I instead broke communication with this dream-woman and continued trying to give my all to my current relationship. But of course, it failed 8 months later. And now I am without anyone. Serves me right I guess.

So that is my one regret. Though, I may have trouble doing anything differently a second time around. I guess I’ve tried to avoid that by wanting to avoid another relationship unless of course I experience that same connection again.

But, as I mentioned at the start of this… essay (sorry ’bout that)… perhaps it is not necessarily irreversible. I mean, I still have her contact details. And I know she would be excited to hear that I have decided to chase the dream and make my writing a profession. (Something we had talked about in depth).

So, maybe I’ll have to keep you all posted. Perhaps I may still overturn this one regret…

Daily Prompt: Name that… You!

Today’s (and I am actually on the right day today!!) Daily Prompt asks… “Do you know the meaning of your name, and why your parents chose it? Do you think it suits you?”

My real name for those playing at home, is Ewen. I don’t know why my parents chose it. I suppose they wanted something different. Something easy to spell; both for them (laziness) and for myself (dunce-ness). Both parents have some family ancestry from Wales, and this is the Welsh form of the name… I think. Unlike Ewan McGregor, who bares the Scottish version. I always get that spelling. Gee, do I look like Obi Wan Kenobi to you? (Don’t answer that).

Mum wanted to call me Joel. That became my middle name. Dad won the name game ultimately. But, I like ‘Ewen’. It does suit me. It’s a bit different, simple, and a little mysterious. Mysterious as in, “really… why?!” But, mysterious nonetheless.

The name means ‘youth‘. I don’t know if, or how that applies to me. I think I am still young at heart. I might be clutching at straws there. Maybe my simpleton parents looked at me upon birth and said “Crikey, he’s young. Let’s name him after youth.”

All I know is that people never understand me the first time I introduce myself. They’re just not ready for it. It sounds foreign to them.

Me: “Hi, I’m Ewen.”

Random: “What? John?”

Me: “No, Ewen.”

Random: “Oh, Gwen.”

Me: “Eeewen.”

Random: “Oh, Melton.”

Me: “Yeah, fucking Melton, that’ll do.”

Movie Of My Life

I seem to be stuck a day behind on The Daily Prompt. I blame my assignment that’s due tomorrow. It’s sucking my time away! Speaking of which… I better make this post shorter than I otherwise would.

Anyways, I refuse to skip yesterday’s prompt. It wants us to cast the movie of our life. Sweet! I can do that.

The first thing you need to know is that my life would likely be a dramedy.

The next thing to do is appoint a Director. My life would quite possibly fit Woody Allen‘s directing talents. Complex, comedic, and a little bit romantic. Of course, I would have to move to New York City (no problem), and the music soundtrack would be all pre-1949 jazz (also no problem).

Photo Credit: nofilmschool.com

Photo Credit: nofilmschool.com

Me – Okay, I think the essence of my character could be portrayed by one man and one man only that is in the right age-range…

John Krasinski

The Housemate – He’s a funny bugger, albeit in an arrogant fashion. You’re not 100% sure why the lead trusts him, and he would probably spend the whole film trying to steal the spotlight… but if you hang around ’til the end, you get it.

Peter Sarsgaard

The Brother – He’s got to be goofy, funny and youngish. I’m going with Josh Peck.

The Love Interest – It’s a Woody Allen film. You think I’m not having a love interest? Tricky part is, there is no current love interest to cast, so I’m setting this in the future. Hence, casting is completely open… in which case there can be only one option. Sophia Bush. Wait, on second thoughts, I think I might just play the role of myself.  😉

And there you have the beginnings of a great film, or life, or life-film. Wait, biopic. Yeah, that’s what they’re called. Anyways, I gotta go finish this assignment. Take care friends!

The Sunshiny Pholidota Subking

The new Daily Prompt is incredibly random. So, I love it! It asks us to scribble down the first 10 words that come to mind, then pick 3 of them. Those 3 are to make up our post title. I decided to go completely random and use an online random word generator. That was ballsy. I ended up with the title ‘Sunshiny Pholidota Subking’.

No joke, they were words 7, 8 and 9, in exact order. And they were the only three words that made any of much sense. I think it was meant to work out like this.

Since that is not a particularly usual phrase, I’ll break it down…

‘Sunshiny’ can refer to possessing the quality of cheerfulness or happiness, which is the definition I am running with here.

‘Pholidota’ is the zoological order comprising of the pangolins.

A ‘subking’ is basically what it sounds like. A leader that rules over part of an empire.

So, below is my (decidedly children’s) story of The Sunshiny Pholidota Subking.

Photo credit: utaot.com

Percy was a very happy pangolin. He had everything a pangolin could want.

He ruled over a great Pangolin Kingdom. He had a beautiful pangolin family. He had access to all the insects a pangolin could ever want to eat.

But there was one problem in Percy’s Pangolin Kingdom. That problem was Lara, the leopard.

Lara was a meat-eater. And pangolins are meat!

Percy was the friendliest pangolin. Everybody who ever met Percy thought he was just wonderful. So all the pangolins decided that lovable Percy should try asking Lara very nicely not to eat them.

So one day, Percy Pangolin went to visit Lara Leopard at her favourite tree.

But Lara was not in her tree this day. She was on the ground, looking sadly up at the last bunch of leaves. Her tree was dying.

Percy put on his friendliest voice and asked the leopard, “Lara, why is your tree dying?”

Lara was very surprised that the pangolin would speak to her. Usually pangolins hid from leopards. But she was too sad to chase Percy today. Lara pointed a big paw at her tree and said to Percy, “Termites are eating my tree. Termites eat wood, and my tree is wood!”

Percy thought about this and had an idea. He was a pangolin after all, and pangolins eat termites! In his nicest pangolin voice, Percy said, “Lara, we pangolins eat termites. If I eat all the termites, your tree will be saved.”

Lara thought this was very nice of the pangolin. She thought it was so nice, that she wanted to do something nice for him, too. Lara said, “Mr. Pangolin, if you eat all the termites and save my favourite tree, I will promise not to eat any of your pangolin friends anymore.”

Percy thought this was a fantastic idea. So he agreed. That night, Percy ate all the termites living in Lara’s tree. He was so full he could not eat anymore.

Lara was very grateful to her new pangolin friend. Now the termites were gone, her favourite tree would live for a very long time. She was so grateful that she would never eat another pangolin ever again.

Percy returned back to his pangolin kingdom and told the other pangolins all about how he saved Lara’s tree. All the pangolins were very grateful that Percy had saved them from the leopard. He had brought happiness to all the Pangolin Kingdom.

And Percy would always be known as the friendliest Pangolin King ever.

The End

More Than Meets The Eye

I am a  Daily Prompt behind. But, I do want to respond to yesterday’s. So, I will. Rules be damned. I am a maverick, after all.

Yesterday’s prompt asked us to examine elements of our blog, and what it all tells us about ourselves.

At first glance, my Blog Theme tells me I like things simple.

It was suggested once that I use a different theme. I recognised this advice to be logically correct, and then chose not to change my theme. This tells me two things.

1. I am very loyal. Yes, even to inanimate blog themes. I have the ability to feel attachment to everything. I am more empathetic than I’d even care to mention.

2. I trust my instincts and intuition. Certainly beyond my logic, and most definitely beyond anyone else’s logic. I observed a long list of themes before deciding this one felt right. I am not going back on my gut.

Honestly though, to others my blog probably raises more questions than it answers. Akin to the short length of my posts, and brief “About’ description, I am a person that appreciates mystery and intrigue. And lives it.

I am perhaps afraid of being boring, and counter that with only giving as much of myself at one time as is required. If you hang around long enough, you’ll get all the necessary pieces of the puzzle. In hindsight it was probably a waste of your time. But, by then it is too late. Perhaps that is my ploy. Perhaps I am just needy.

Perhaps it’s not that. Perhaps I feel that all the pieces at once are confusing and appear as a jumbled mess. Perhaps I know that if the pieces are presented bit by bit, the puzzle-solver is avoided being overwhelmed with too much at once and is allowed the time to put it all together succinctly and accurately. Perhaps my only aim is for you to know the real me, and avoid a misunderstanding because I know that the real me, and not the rushed first-impression me, is actually worth knowing in its completeness. Perhaps I appreciate the concept of accessibility. Perhaps I am simply aware.

Perhaps I am the whole lot.

Perhaps there’s even more to me than that.

Me, the 10-year-old Zoologist

When I was 10, I wanted to be either a Zoologist or a Wildlife Photographer.

I was mad about animals. Oh, the amount of books I had. The amount of books I still have. I have always found that stuff fascinating. It isn’t where I am now, but hey, my journey is far from over.

I actually got close. I have a Bachelor of Science Degree, with a double major in Zoology and Conservation Ecology. So, I have the relevant qualifications for one part of my childhood dream.

These days I am studying Professional Writing and Editing. Hey, if I end up writing Zoological books, the 10-year-old me will love me forever.

At the moment though, the closest I get to my childhood dream is visiting the Zoo. Here’s a few recent pics…

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Poor Tasmanian Devil. He looks a bit mopey today. Don’t you just want to give him a cuddle?

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Two little squirrel monkeys playing together. Well, that’s decidedly cute!

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Spider monkey in the midst of a staring contest. Spoiler: He wins this one.

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Meerkat on watch. You can never be too careful.

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Mr Gorilla is tired. Someone throw him a pillow.

 

All photos here are by me, That EJ.

In response to – Daily Prompt: When you were 10, what did you want to be when you grew up? What are you now? Are the two connected?