Selfishness – A simple word (With a complex meaning)

Selfishness is a word that we are likely to be confronted with every day…

But what does it really mean and how should it be applied to our daily lives, if at all?

Most dictionaries define selfishness as…

“Devoted to or caring only for oneself; concerned primarily with one’s own interests, benefits, welfare, etc., regardless of others.”

I pondered on this definition and eventually came to a conclusion that this is possibly one of the most misused words in the English vocabulary.

I asked myself the question..

Is it selfish to pursue our dreams, to live the life we desire, to see what we can achieve; to explore new horizons and to develop as individuals; to stand at the edge and look at the world through a different lens…?

 

As individuals our life and the way we lead it creates a mosaic of who we are.

The pieces of a jigsaw puzzle randomly sitting in a box are meaningless unless they are joined.

In much the same way the pieces of our lives, scattered, cannot portray or project anything about who we are or what we seek to be until pieced together.

Interlocked they provide a mosaic of whom we really are…

The picture unfolds…

Whom or what would we be if we were not able to join the random pieces together and pursue our dreams?

Would we ever achieve our real potential, or would a fear of selfishness limit us and how we develop as individuals?

Baz – The Landy

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Those who don’t think it can be done (shouldn’t bother the person doing it)

 DSCN0576“But there are men for whom the unattainable has a special attraction. Usually they are not experts: their ambitions and fantasies are strong enough to brush aside the doubts which more cautious men might have.” Walt Unsworth.

Walt must have had me in mind when he penned that!

I’m gearing back up, slowly but surely and aiming for a Himalayan trip to climb three 6,000 metre peaks in the not too distant future

And of course, Cho Oyu, the world’s sixth highest and one of fourteen 8,000 metre peaks, still beckons…

DSCN0282

This has been my goal for sometime and you might be left wondering when is Baz going to get around to doing it…and I must say I’m a bit behind schedule after the injuries and personal setbacks of the past twelve months – but I’m getting it back on track, slowly, but surely!

In the meantime I’ll be travelling in Australia’s wonderful outback in June and July, including a crossing of Australia’s Great Victoria Desert and a visit to the site of the Atomic Bomb testing from the 1950s– so be sure to stay in touch!

Welford NP Sand Dune 1

And crikey, just remember, if all else fails, remain out of control and see what develops…

Photos: Baz, The Landy, and Janet Planet

The Australian Outback Beckons (Go West, Young Man)

Tullamore, Australia

Today we pointed “The Landy” down the driveway and bid farewell to Sydney for a couple of weeks.

Making our way west over the Blue Mountains via the Bell’s Line in a modern four-wheel drive vehicle we did give some thought to the early explorers’ who headed this way, journeying on foot, horseback and bullock dray. 

Our drive took us through the larger rural towns of Bathurst and Orange before diverting from the usual route west, the Great Western Highway, to travel through the township of Parkes and the smaller rural towns of Trundle and Tottenham.

Trundle Hotel

Situated 55-kilometres north of Parkes, Trundle is at the centre of a wheat, sheep and cattle farming area.  Of interest is the Trundle Hotel, a majestic building in the town’s main street, which is National Estate, listed and has the longest verandah in New South Wales, coming in at a long 87.6 metres. The town’s main street is also the widest in New South Wales measuring 60 metres.

Leaving Trundle behind we passed through the closest town to the geographical centre in New South Wales, Tottenham. We varied our route to visit the geographical centre, which is located 34 kilometres west of the town along the Cockies Road.

Tottenham is also at the centre of large scale agriculture cropping and sheep grazing and boosts a large hotel, The Tottenham Hotel, which overlooks the main street.

We arrived at Nyngan to a tranquil camp next to the Bogan River at the Riverside Van Park.

Bogan River, Nyngan

In 1835, explorer, Major Mitchell was the first European to document a journey along the Bogan River, describing the area around Nyngan as ‘a long pond, with many birds, ducks, and brolgas’. The local aboriginal word ‘Nyingan’ is said to mean ‘long pond of water’. In 1882 the town’s site was surveyed and buildings from an earlier settlement at Canonba 30- kilometres away were moved to the present Nyngan Township.

 Click here to find out where Baz, “The Landy” is today…

Photos: Baz, The Landy

No ordinary moments, no ordinary people, no ordinary lives (A note from a wonderful son)

How lucky am I
No ordinary moments, no ordinary people, no ordinary lives

“But there are men for whom the unattainable has a special attraction. Usually they are not experts; their ambitions and fantasies are strong enough to brush aside the doubts which more cautious men might have.

 Determination and faith are their strongest weapons. At best such men are regarded as eccentric; at worst, mad…”

 These are words penned by the legendary mountaineer, Walt Unsworth, and they have had a profound effect on me since I read them a number of years ago.

These words summed me up perfectly, I thought.

I’m sure many will be able to relate to them equally, regardless of what your pursuits are…

Over the years I have pursued a whole range of activities, some adventurous, others less so – but I have always been driven by a desire to simply embrace life…

And I have never considered myself an expert in any of them, but it has always been a fierce determination that has seen me through; a strong faith in my ability to grasp the key things, to put them into practice.

I’ve never considered anything I’ve done as a failure, but I’ve had plenty of learning experiences, set-backs that have helped me to learn, to grow, and to develop. I’m thankful for those set-backs, as they have made me stronger.

 Eccentric; mad; yes, I’ve been referred in that way many times.

 Today, I wear those comments proudly, like a badge.

 Walt’s words have encouraged me to have the confidence to pursue my dream of climbing large mountains, to consider making an attempt on the summit of Mt Everest, in the least, to have the courage to admit that I want to climb it.

Every day on Wordspress, millions of words are written by ordinary people, stories about the challenges life has thrown at them, what they have done, and continue to do to overcome them.

About their dreams and aspirations; their highs and their lows…

Ordinary people who want to improve their fitness, to lose weight, to cycle across a city,  or across the world.

Many have their sights set on a fun run, and others having completed one, setting their sights towards running a marathon.

For others, it is their challenge to become stronger, to be able to lift more, or about capturing that once in a life-time photograph, perhaps testing a new recipe to share with friends, or with people they have never met.

Others talk about health and lifestyle challenges they struggle with, that they have overcome.

I read as many of them as I can, they motivate me and they provide me with much needed inspiration…

Seemingly, there is always someone in this cyberspace community ready to reach out, to congratulate, to console…

Usually these people aren’t super-elite athletes, or neither five-star chefs, nor are they fitness gurus.

They have a much greater status than that, for they are simply ordinary people, the same people that Walt Unsworth wrote about when he penned those words…

To those who aspire to do their best, to challenge themselves, I say never give in, you’re not alone out there, dream big, and pursue your dreams…

But on ordinary people, yes I’ve referred to people as ordinary, but in reality, there is no such thing as ordinary people, we are all unique, we all contribute to the mosaic that makes up the world we live in…

It would be a boring place if we were all the same…

We’d never learn, grow, or develop as people.

Take the time to read over Walt’s musings a couple of times, because he was speaking about you…

Draw on the strength of his writing, it is powerful…

Above all else remember,

There are no ordinary moments, no ordinary people, no ordinary lives…

Baz – The Landy

Success Isn’t Permanent (And Failure Isn’t fatal)

Not a bad thought to keep in mind, and it is one of the things I like to remind myself of each day as I chase my dreams…

 

Those who don’t think it can be done (shouldn’t bother the person doing it)

Grey's Peak New Zealand

 “But there are men for whom the unattainable has a special attraction. Usually they are not experts: their ambitions and fantasies are strong enough to brush aside the doubts which more cautious men might have.

 Determination and faith are their strongest weapons. At best such men are regarded as eccentric; at worst, mad…” Walt Unsworth.

 I’m gearing back up, slowly but surely…

Initially into the Blue Mountains, just to the west of Sydney, for some rock climbing to hone the skills and aiming for a Nepal trip to climb three 6,000 metre peaks in November.

Cho Oyu, the world’s sixth highest and one of fourteen 8,000 metre peaks, beckons in 2015…

Sweet Dreams, Blue Montains

This has been my goal for sometime I’m just one-year behind after the injuries and some personal setbacks over the past twelve months.

But I’ll be doing plenty of travel in Australia’s wonderful outback over the coming months also – so be sure to stay in touch!

Welford NP Sand Dune 1

And crikey, if all else fails, just remain out of control and see what develops…

Photos: Baz, The Landy, and Janet Planet

Living Works Of Art (In the Australian Bush)

Wildflowers
A Fringed Lily – Minute and as Delicate as life itself…

Perhaps this will come as little surprise, but today we were Out and About in the Australian Bush…

TomO was having a sleep over at a friends place, although the term sleepover is used merely to highlight that he wasn’t at home with us, because if I know those boys there would have been little sleep happening.

Hell, come to think of it, the poor bloke was probably cleaning up the aftermath of the dinner party we enjoyed with the parents of TomO’s mate last night…

Now nothing ever seems to happen in our house before a cup of tea has been taken, which shouldn’t be that surprising as Janet’s father, Archie, was a tea importer, so after our mandatory cup of tea this morning we boarded The Landy, camera gear at the ready, and headed about 50-kilometres to the north of Sydney into Yengo National Park.

This park is a favourite of ours and we have spent many hours atop Devil’s Mountain watching the sun set on the the park’s western horizon, or Burragurra as it is known by Australia’s first inhabitants.

The mountain has many aboriginal rock engravings etched into its surface, including the spirit footprints of Wa-boo-ee, the creator of heaven and earth.  In aboriginal legend he stepped from here to Mount Yengo in one stride and then ascended back into the sky.

Yengo National Park
Mt Yengo, Australia

All this, just to the north of Australia’s most populous city, strewth, how did we Aussies’s get so lucky?

And you know how I tend to rave on about the Australian Bush and Outback, well just take another look at the beautiful example of a Fringed Lily.  They are so minute and in flower presently.

And as harsh as the Australian Bush can be it is such a fragile environment producing what can only be described as Living Works of Art…just like the Fringed Lily!

Crikey, all together now, say it!

(Big Bad) Baz, we wouldn’t wouldn’t be dead for quid’s!

Photos: (Big Bad) Baz, The Landy