madness

Aren’t we all mad? What’s normal to you may seem bizarre to me and to others alike. As our lives go on the more people we come into contact with and the more we are told how to act, how to live and for the most part of it we conform to the status quo and do what others deem to be socially acceptable.

Some people love to do their own thing and live their lives their own way although they may be perceived as mad, madness to them is doing the same thing each and every day of your life.

For us, madness is something that is exhibited in a mental hospital. We fail to see the advantages of madness, the freedom that it exhibits, the need to give into other peoples desires does not exist. How many of us would be happier if we did our own thing without worrying of the thoughts or concerns of others? Without worrying of the implications of not being perceived as a standard person?

Life is a precious thing and if we waste the gift of life doing what makes other people happy then how mad is that? Everybody is mad in some way, it’s just that some types of madness are perceived in a kinder light than others.

The subject of insanity has been on my mind since I read a book called ‘Veronika decides to die’ by Paulo Coelho. Once this girl realises she had been condemned to death her entire outlook on life changes. She lets her innermost desires talk charge and chooses not to act in a way that shall please others.

If you had nothing to lose would you still be the same person, if you didn’t care whet other people though would you still act the same? As always I would love to hear your thoughts, cheers. Dan.

a writers block

In the last two weeks I have left Belgium, returned to Ireland for a week and moved to Frankfurt Germany. I have read some books by Mitch Albom; ‘The Five People You Meet in Heaven’, ‘The Time Keeper’ and ‘Tuesdays With Morrie’. I have read ‘The Alchemist’ and ‘By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept’ by Paulo Ceolho. I have been inspired but have failed to come up with topics of my own to write about. Instead every day it have thought I should write something for my blog, however nothing substantial or interesting has arose to mind.

Although this is a personal blog I do not wish to bore people with the ins and outs of my daily life. I understand that with a blog you may choose to keep it as a diary nonetheless I think I can churn out topics that are more of interest to the masses.

I have read about topics such as faith and destiny in the past couple of weeks, the ins and outs of life. They have got me thinking about how helpless we are, how we must let time do it’s own thing, how everything happens for a reason and there is no point worrying about the small issues in our day to day lives, but how we should not ignore them because they are intact, what makes a life.

I would strongly recommend the five books that I have recently read, what about you? Have you read any of the above titles, would you care to share your thoughts on them? Dan.

comfort

I have been at home in Ireland for six days now. The week previous to that was hectic with my last week of work and my packing, since I have arrived home I have said plenty of hellos and already some goodbyes.

I have mixed emotions about moving to Germany next week on one hand it is going to be very exciting however I am finding myself to be very comfortable here at home, possibly due to the fact that this is my first week off from work in that last eight months.

Anyway stay tuned guys and I will try to come up with something slightly less personal and a bit more interesting. Dan.

change

If we don’t change, we don’t grow. If we don’t grow, we are t really living.

Gail Sheehy

Yesterday I got some news of change. A job offer in Frankfurt, Germany. I feel as if it has come at an appropriate time, I love my life here in Antwerp but feel that perhaps it may be time to move on.

I will remember Antwerp with almost entirely fond memories, and to me that is why now is a good time for change as I am not giving my life here a chance to grow stagnant or sour.

Change is a great way for our personalities to grow, as people travel and experience new ways of life, new customs and culture it is all thrown into the mixing pot that helps to define you as a person. You get to hold on to the positive experiences that you have encountered and hopefully discard the things that will be unable to help you to grow as a person.

Germany to me is a fantastic country, I have been there a handful of times and I am certainly enthusiastic to move there and experience day in, day out, what it has to offer.

I am excited for another chance to break the conformity, relocate and once again see what life has got to offer me. What about you guys? Anything new or exciting happening in your lives? Dan. .

running

What a way to feel alive. No, this is not some sort of in depth philosophical post about how I am running from a higher purpose, this is the physical term of running. Getting your heart pumping and the sweat flowing. Burning off those unnecessary calories, your body screaming in thanks.

I am a casual jogger/runner, I get around to it whenever I remember to. Although days, weeks and sometimes even months could pass and the thought wouldn’t even cross my mind. However since the beginning of July I have been pretty good, getting out at least a couple of times a week. Before that I forgotten about exercise for a month or two.

A great way to feel healthy, to feel like you’re doing something. There is nothing better than the feeling when you walk in that door after completing a session.

Every time I get back into fitness I make a promise to myself that I will keep it up this time and work harder, so here’s to getting fit again. Thanks for reading and I would love to hear some of your stories in the comments section. Cheers, Dan.

old friends

Old friends. A very grandeur topic to be writing about for somebody of my young age. However tomorrow I meet with a guy who I have been friends with for about thirteen years, eight years into those thirteen we became very close friends. Since we both moved away from home when we were eighteen we haven’t seen each other all to much, it’s almost two years since we’ve seen each other last but tomorrow he visits Antwerp.

The thing that I love the most about old friendships is that you can go however amount of time without seeing somebody, in some cases without even communicating with that person, although once you meet again you click back like you seen each other last week. As John Lennon elegantly put it;

“It takes a long time to grow an old friend”

Your old friends are the ones who know you best, they know the real you. Maybe they have missed a few developments of charisma when you went off travelling or hightailed to college but they know the real person that’s in there. You shouldn’t forget about them because I firmly believe that you wouldn’t be who you are today without whatever influence they managed to squeeze into you.

For occasions like this our modern generation has been blessed with the gift of technology. All it takes is the click of a button to contact somebody who is on the opposite side of the globe. Last quarter Facebook passed 1.19 Billion monthly active users, the chances that you could stumble upon your old buddy from college are tremendous.

What about you guys? Have you bumped into any old friends lately? Maybe you should send that email, or the message on Facebook that you’ve been thinking about doing for a while. As always I would love to hear some feedback in the comments section, cheers. Dan.

the pros and cons of living abroad

The expat life. Living away from home. It’s all very glamorous, we are allured by extravagant tales revealed by racy travelers and once you get the urge to go, there is no stopping you. There are countless ways to do it, some a bit braver than others, I myself waited until I had a confirmed job before I left. Some  just pick a date, pack a bag and off they go.

“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.” – St.Augustine

That quote that has always stood out in my head and regardless of how or when you decide to live abroad it’s not necessarily for everybody. However if it is for you then be prepared for the time of your life. But regardless of how amazing a time your having there may be a little twinge in the back of your mind reminding you of home.

Anybody I know that has gone travelling or has moved abroad hasn’t looked back since but that doesn’t mean that there isn’t both negatives as well as positives to moving somewhere it just means that the positives outweigh the negatives. Here i’m going to start with the positives.

Pros

You get to see a bit of the world, there is a lot to be said for venturing out of your home town and seeing what our big green and blue earth has to offer us. You will not be disappointed, it’s the same reason people go on holidays every summer. But instead of just experiencing these majesties for a week or two of the Summer we get to live it everyday.

You get to experience some different cultures. You would be surprised how short a distance you need to travel before you start seeing some major culture changes. You get to witness how different people in live their day-to-day lives. The biggest different I noticed when I moved from Ireland to Belgium was the drinking culture. The Irish definitely drink more but the Belgians certainly drink more often!

Traveling broadens the mind, it may sound a bit pretentious to say but I believe that to be true. There are many ways that traveling broadens the mind. The chance to learn new languages, or at least try. I also recently read an article about the humble traveler, a man that realised he couldn’t communicate well enough with people in another country in situations where he needed help. This man soon learned more about his own limitations.

Meeting like minded people, it’s nice to build a foundation of International friends. Not limited to people from the country you are visiting but other travelers as well. I have found that most people I have met that are also travelling have been easy to get on with and there is no shortage of conversation as everybody comes with a million and one stories to tell.

Cons

Homesickness does occur, stronger and more often for some people that for others. However I think the modern day traveler has it a lot easier. If you find yourself feeling homesick you can find yourself in a conversation or even face to face with loved ones from home using tools like, Facebook, WhatsApp or Skype. It’s very easy to sit down in front of the laptop for thirty minutes and Skype with your entire family and once conversation ensues you’ll find yourself forgetting that the conversation is occurring through a screen.

Missing  events, one thing even Skype can’t replicate is going to your Auntie’s wedding, your brothers birthday or the mid summer meet up with all your friends from school. You may feel left out, or you may feel like your falling out of the loop with your friends because you begin to miss these kind of events. Despite all of this all it takes is a quick trip home to see some familiar faces and it will feel like you never left.

Relationships. Long distance relationships can be arduous nonetheless they are not impossible. There are a million pros and cons to a long distance relationship that you can read here. (A possible future article) Albeit it seems that perhaps the cons may exceed the pros. Then there are those who say that absence makes the heart grow stronger.

 

Like everything, moving abroad has it’s pros and cons. It’s just down to each individual how you rate them, for me the positives certainly outbalance the negatives and that’s why I feel this is the correct thing for me to be doing. What about you? Have you any experience living abroad? How do you feel about it?  I would love to hear your opinions on the matter in the comment section, thanks. Dan.