Friday, December 30, 2011

Testing blog online

The blogger app for the ipad crashed and i have no idea how to get it to work. Maybe i need to reconnect to my laptop which is not in india with me. So, until i figure that out, blogposts will be words...or links to youtube videos whenever i upload.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Two initial pics

Frost on window of Air India while flying over the desert at sunrise.

The desert was just sand at first then was snowcovered.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Arrived safely

Arrived safely in London yesterday morning. British Airways service was fantastic. Readjusting to time zone and preparing for the next time zone...India. Leaving tonight from Heathrow. Not sure how often I will update the blog, but will whenever I can. - Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Monday, December 26, 2011

I'm going to India

Today I am leaving for London en route to India. It will be my first time there. I am going to Kolkata (formerly Calcutta), also known as City of Joy, Cultural Capital of India, Literary Capital of India, City of Furious Creative Energy, City of Palaces, City of All Cities, City of Processions, City of Bridges ... (among other things). 

I will update when I am there . . .

Thursday, December 22, 2011

40 copies of Daisy Chain

Yesterday I went to deliver the 40 copies of Daisy Chain which NALIS purchased. 4 will go to the Heritage Library and the rest will be distributed through other NALIS branches in T & T.

I sat at the desk of the person I was dealing with and personalized each copy with a word or short message and my signature. The young lady told me that most authors just drop off their books and go, and that it was a nice touch to sign them. She had a copy of her own on the desk and got me to sign that as well.

I love signing Daisy Chain. I love the the thought of some unknown person picking it up, seeing the signature and the message and feeling as though they are being personally invited through a little door in the paper. . . "Come in. I've been waiting for you . . ." or in the case of Daisy Chain:  "we've been waiting for you."

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

What are the secrets of packing light?

Maybe having a smaller suitcase is the best answer. That leaves no choice but to take bare essentials.

Maybe the secret is also to pack enough clothes for 2 to 3 days and, if possible, buy new clothing, as needed, at the destination.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Monday, December 19, 2011

Practising and preparing for my journey

Now testing with my camera connection kit, which allows me to attach the usb from my camera to the ipad and download images to the photo folder. It works seamlessly. There's also another attachment into which i can directly insert the SD card from the camera.

Then I experimented with a photo app I downloaded. Photostudio HD. That accounts for the slight effect on the image of the flower. The article i was reading said the app was really good, that it had all these effects and there were even favourable reviews to back it up. I think its effects are a bit cheesy, but then again, it's not the pro version. Anyway, I am a firm believer in "it's not what you have, it's what you do with what you have ..." I'm going to see if I find something more like photoshop . . . Or maybe there is even a photoshop app?

Gradually getting used to the ipad, making sure blogpress isn't crashing (which it hasn't since I reinstalled it), making sure i can upload pics, have my email account set up, etc . . . All in preparation for my travels.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Trying this again . . .

Yesterday a friend advised me to use the blogpress app to make blogging to Blogger easier. It is indeed easier, but last night when testing it out, it crashed. In reading about it, there were many bloggers complaining about it crashing with IO5.

When I tried it this morning it came up fine. In fact I am writing this post with it. In a while I will see if it posts successfully.

Now to upload a pic and see how that works. Same pic of bedroom window from yesterday since I don't have any other shots of the iPad right now.

- Posted using BlogPress from my ipad2

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Hello from my new ipad2

This is my first blogpost from my new iPad. Very compact and great for traveling. The only thing is, I can't upload photos directly to blogspot, or even to Facebook. I have to use photo bucket and paste a link in order to see the image

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

The above shot is just a random one of the bedroom window, to test how the pasting of the code works. I'm sure there's a more direct way. I'll figure it out.

There is also an app for uploading images to fbook. Everything is 'an app'. Why not just keep it simple and direct? Oh well, anything to get consumers to spend . . .

The other thing is, safari browser doesn't allow me to blog in compose mode, only in HTML mode. Too confusing for me when it comes to changing font, etc . . . Certain things will take getting used to. So, in time to come, the blog posts you get from me may be quite basic,as I will be traveling and using my iPad.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Evolution of Now

A friend of mine, Gregory Sloane-Seale
"We do have the power to influence now...We must be awake & conscious of the fact that every interaction, every utterance, every time we stop to allow someone to cross the road, every time we do something that's going to assist someone, uplift someone...If you could do it, do it. Evolve in that moment. That is what feeds us. That is what sustains us & that is what we need to be focused on...Let the process be us living in the now, evolving in the now, moving forward. Peace, Love & Possibilities. (Gregory Sloane-Seale, The Evolution of Now).

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Who are you out there?

Early morning sun through my bedroom window
This blog is like a window. You can see in to me (as much as I reveal on any given day) but I don't really see you. I "see" some people, like Lynn and Param Atma . . . and I know there are people who read the blog but don't leave comments here. They may email or say something in person.

But I often think it would be nice to know something of whoever else is out there checking in regularly or from time to time. Even if just for today, will you introduce yourself and say a little something?

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Going with the flow of life

I'm beginning to feel as busy as the fireflies look in the above image. Time is moving swiftly and life is getting busier. One day soon I will update you as to why.

Monday, December 5, 2011

The weekend was wonderful

The Daisy Chain reading at Kariwak was fantastic. I couldn't have asked for more. The ajoupa was neatly set up with intimate rows of chairs and a few padded yoga mats for those who wanted to sit on the floor. To the front was a chair for me, a small table with a reading lamp and a microphone. The simplicity and peaceful energy of the space, along with the trickle of the nearby fountain and the bird song, gave the feel of a late afternoon meditation as I sat waiting for audience members to arrive.

Despite it being a fairly overcast Saturday evening, there was a good turn out. It felt cozy, reading in the muted lighting of the ajoupa which, as I learned over breakfast on Sunday, was first ever used by the Dalia Lama when he visited Tobago some years ago.

I had put the names of 14 of my favourite characters from the novel into miniscule zip-lock bags with hearts on them (purchased once on a visit to Toronto). The white paper bag they were in was passed around and different members of the audience chose one name at a time. I would then read an excerpt from that character's chapter. I didn't count, but I probably read about 7 or 8 in all—ending with a full reading of the PHILIPPINE chapter.

We ended with questions, comments, book sales and signing and cups of Kariwak's delicious spice tea! I would recommend going to Kariwak if even just to drink that. The taste lingers in my throat even now . . .

Quite like the women in the book, every Daisy Chain reading event so far has had its own personality. I have loved them all and I look forward to more. In fact, offers to do more readings in different geographical locations came up this weekend. I am definitely following up on those. It would be great to do readings all over the world.

It is a heartwarming feeling to look up and see recognition and enjoyment in people's eyes as a character resonates with something in them . . . and to have people eager to buy novels after a reading—for themselves and as gifts for others. It is lovely to hear someone say "My friend________ would love this." It makes me think that they think specially of that person. It's also lovely to think that people not only in TT, but in different parts of the world will be receiving Daisy Chain as gifts, sitting and reading it on airplanes, subways, in bed, while waiting, in parks, reading alone or reading together as friends or as a couple, etc.

Teaching yoga the next morning in the ajoupa was also intimate and meaningful. This was followed by a delicious Kariwak breakfast. Also worth experiencing!

I took my camera but unfortunately didn't think about it. It remained in my knapsack. Hence no photos.

To sum up: really glad I went and did this. It was perfect timing and everything fell into place exactly as it was meant to. The Universe was at work.

Many thanks to Kariwak, in particular Tanya Clovis, who organized and set up everything for me so beautifully, so that it was all smooth sailing. Thanks to everyone who attended the reading, bought books and gave encouraging feedback . . . and also to those who came to yoga and shared conversations and breakfast after.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Beautiful Stranger

On Friday morning as I sat at my laptop, something caught my attention through the side of my eye—a small shadow flapping behind the curtain. It looked like a feather. On closer inspection, I noticed it was a butterfly. Liking the way its shadow looked through the blue voile-like material, I quickly got my Canon Elph from my bag and began to shoot the above video.

As you read this post, I am in Tobago without my laptop. But I am writing it now (Saturday morning) and scheduling it to appear on Sunday morning.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Flying out

Today I leave for Tobago—less than half an hour away by plane, but I feel as though I'm going much further.  Somewhat of a world tour feeling, since it's the first time I'll be getting on a plane to go anywhere and read from my novel and teach yoga. My suitcase is small but heavy, containing white clothes (for yoga) and white books (Daisy Chain). 

Come and join us if you will be in Tobago this weekend. It so happens, as I was told yesterday, that there's a literary festival currently going on in Tobago. Well-timed choice of taking Daisy Chain across the waters.

This evening, the Daisy Chain reading will begin at 5:00 p.m. at Kariwak Hotel. Normally I have different women reading the parts of select women from the novel. This time I'll be reading everything on my own. I've come up with a simple way of making the experience interactive, since I like the audience to feel more involved than simply being "listeners".

Sunday morning from 7:00 a.m. I'll be teaching a Kundalini Yoga class, also at Kariwak. Looking forward to that as well. All are welcome, including beginners. (Click on the "Come and join us" link in the second paragraph for details).

Friday, December 2, 2011

Following fireflies

The other night when I went to Mt St Benedict to shoot star trails, my two friends and I were saying that when next there's a power outage it would be a great time for me to experiment. There would be less light pollution.

Last night electricity went off for quite a while and even though there was light cloud cover, the stars were more visible than usual. But because my cable release isn't working, I was unable to take full advantage of the opportunity.

Earlier in the evening I experimented once more with the fireflies in the field next door. Instead of leaving the camera on the tripod and depending on the fireflies to move in front of the lens, I followed them with the camera (20 second exposure). The above image is what I got.

Interesting that the resulting streaks are multi-coloured, when all fireflies are green.

Thursday, December 1, 2011


I want to rephrase something I wrote on my blog post last night about having to order and then "waaaaaaaaaaaaait" for a new cable release for my camera.

I woke up this morning and Florence Scovel Shinn popped into my mind. I blogged about her a few days ago. She is all about the power of the word. "Your word is your wand," she says. This is very true. We aren't always aware of the impact of our words in shaping our life's reality. There are some phrases we utter, often habitually, which can negate us, negate others, negate situations . . . often without us even realizing it.

Becoming more conscious of our words (and our thoughts), we begin to transform our existence. This may be easier for some than for others. It takes varying degrees of conscious effort and repetition to make the shift and start seeing changes.

Instead of saying "I have to waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaait" for my cable release, I'm saying: "I look forward to receiving a wonderful new cable release for my camera before the end of 2011."

If you are interested in having mp3s of one of Florence's books, check out this link.  You can download the audio files and burn them to CD or put them on your ipod—to listen while walking, jogging, while stuck in traffic, while doing things around the house, cooking, etc.