It has been an extraordinarily long time since I have written on the blog. For that, to those people who care about it, I apologize. When I got back to Asia, I became subsumed by helping finish a project that has been dragging on for way too long. And that in itself reminds me that I never finished writing the book on construction that I started almost 2 years ago. Ah well, another project to pick up when I have time.
But it has been a productive few months, nothing to complain about there. I believe I have been of help to my friends and that is a good thing. About 45 days and I will be back off to Argentina again.
This article will be a bit rambling as I have various thoughts that have been piling up in my head for a while.
I came to realize in the last few days, that having a high empathy quotient and being lonely is a bad combination for someone such as I. It led me into being overly generous with both money and time to people who truly didn’t appreciate what they were being given. Stoicism and speaking with one of my best friends helped guide me out of the morass of self-flagellation into which I had descended. Nothing worse than feeling oneself to be stupid.
But, I am just looking at it as a lesson learned (yet again 😊). I will start next year off with a new attitude and more rigor in how I give of myself. After all, the fact that I have been taken advantage of is my fault. And I don’t want to become bitter as a result of my failure to be aware.
And, I don’t think I am bitter. Saddened, disappointed (in myself), yes. Bitter, no. As a point of general philosophy, I believe that it is absolutely critical that one is honest with oneself. Even if you indulge in prevarication to others, do not allow it with yourself. Regardless of circumstance, you must be straight with yourself.
I am tired, I am hoping very much that the next couple of years will see an end to working on a regular basis. As has been mentioned on the Practical Stoic podcast several times there is a concept of momento mori. This is Latin for ‘remember death’. And he says one thing that I am thinking about more and more often.
If you knew you were going to die tomorrow, would you be doing what you are doing today?
And unfortunately, increasingly my answer is “no”. I would really like to be spending more time traveling, visiting friends, reading, writing, and watching people.
That is not a complaint. Not by any means. I’m an extraordinarily fortunate individual. I’m reasonably well off, my health is reasonably good, and I have some incredible friends. But it is a human trait to always want what one doesn’t have. So, I’m trying to work with my situation so that I’m doing slightly more every day of that which I really enjoy doing. Hence, writing today. And, it was texting back and forth with a friend in the US yesterday that reminded me I hadn’t written in my blog for a while. You know who you are, I think you substituted dog for turkey at Thanksgiving 😊. Thank you for getting me back to it.
It is a dark and quiet morning here in Asia. Dawn just lighting up the sky. I’m enjoying a large cup of coffee in my San Antonio mug, sitting in my comfortable office, and writing. There is relatively little stress for me at the moment, so life is good. My brother miscalled me on Signal at 1AM this morning, interrupting some truly weird dreams, so thank you for that 😊.
In November, I did something that I have never done before. I went to a charity ball, a black-tie event, and Hong Kong. I’ve never owned or worn a tuxedo. And although neither was on my bucket list (a list I don’t actually have), I can now add both those items. I’m told that I look quite good in a tuxedo. It was an interesting event. I enjoyed being with my good friends in Hong Kong, but the people that were attending the event lived in a different world. I’ve written elsewhere about the rampant consumerism in Hong Kong, and it was out in full force at that event. Never have I seen so many people that were so consumed by what other people thought about them. There were some enormous egos floating around at that affair. Not to mention people without a lot of dress sense.
https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1BBuJ7mW_rKCWKZ4sLanxvPuxBaCPEsuc is the photo gallery for the event in case anybody is interested.
The band Foreigner was playing, but they had a very obnoxious emcee, some American guy. And during the dinner leading up to the main event, he was making a point of singling out tables, with a roaming cameraman, to say why are you so and so at table number such and such not bidding on this auction or that auction. With a raging headache, and a sore throat I finally gave it up as a bad job and left before my anxiety became… acute. And just before Foreigner started to play. So, I never actually heard them. I’ve noticed that a lot of bands that are getting on in years all seem to end up playing the Asian party circuit. But still, it was an interesting thing to experience, and now that I own a tux, I might even attend next year again, now that I’m better prepared for the noise and the people.
Sarah Brightman released a new album on 9 November. I don’t listen to music that much anymore, but she is an extraordinary singer. The name of the album was Hymn. “Sky and Sand” was my favorite track on that album.
I have been able to get back to my Spanish studies as of about two weeks ago, and that has been good. I am looking forward to being immersed in Spanish again once I get back to South America. I suspect that by the end of next year my Spanish fluency should be adequate.
One reason that I stopped writing for this blog was that I realized that so much of what I was writing about was coming from my stress and frustration at the morons in this world who have power and mistakenly think that they have the intelligence to use it (not to mention Putin, Xi Jinping, Trump, or Erdogan by name). I had to remember my Stoic principles of not getting bent out of shape by that which I have no control over. I certainly don’t have any control over those egregious jackasses. All one can do is try to lead one’s life in such a way that they affect one as little as possible. And I’m trying to do that, and I hope you can too.
And I will try to find more cheerful things to write about 😊.