Welcome Back; Tidal Waves and Rainbows

My try-hard, ganbaru face

My try-hard, ganbaru face

You may have noticed an absence over the last year. Or maybe you didn’t (I won’t be offended). Well, I have good news for you: I’m back.

The last year has been quite the roller coaster for me. My previous post marked the final turn in my father’s health, and subsequent rapid decline. The prior November, in a last-ditch effort, he underwent a difficult procedure to “replace” his immune system to beat the Lymphoma. Remember my “Thankful for Superheroes” post? Well, that post was made just after he completed that treatment. He was such a trooper, the true image of strength and a positive attitude. I’m still learning these lessons from him, and will continue to do so for a long time.

It’s been nearly one year to the day since his passing.

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Photo Journal: UK, Belgium, Germany

On a recent work trip, I made a few pit stops.

Photo Journal: London, England

Next time, you’ll be here too.

Photo Journal: Copenhagen, Denmark

Lunch in Copenhagen, wishing you were here.

Photo Journal: Gothenburg, Sweden (2)

For you, dad.

Photo Journal: Gothenburg, Sweden

I don’t know how much time we have left together, but I think of you every moment, wishing you were here.

I love you, dad.

Composing the Shot

Osaka_ShinSaibashiComposition is one of the fastest ways to ruin a shot – and one of the fastest ways to fix it. The good news is that most people have an eye for composition, it’s just a matter of learning a few quick fixes to turn “There is something off about this” to “I can’t put my finger on it, but this is stunning.”

It’s not formulaic in any sense, so two plus two doesn’t necessarily equal four, but it is a sensory science. Learn to feel out the picture and complement its natural attributes. If the natural attributes are competing, do something about it.

Hunting around on the web, you can find a dozen “Rules for Composition.” But as far as I am concerned, the below are the ones that make or break and image. Once you’ve got these down, you level up even the simplest Instagram photo. Continue reading

Thankful for Super Heroes

Super hero and Isu·per
 /ˈso͞opər/ adjective
 1. exhibiting the characteristics of its type to an extreme or excessive degree
he·ro /ˈhi(ə)rō/ noun
 1. a person, typically a man, who is admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities.

Last year, made a rather lengthy list of all the things I am grateful for. And that list still stands (mostly), but this year, I want to focus on one thing in particular that I am thankful for. If you’re as clever as I think you are, you’ve already deduced that this post is about super heroes. Just maybe not the ones you are used to.

Sure, Batman is brave. Superman is strong. Spiderman is agile. Green Lantern is fearless. But we already know this.

No, what I am thankful for are the ones that slip seemingly unnoticed through life. Unnoticed to all but those whom idealize them. All who believe that they, by the very definition of super hero, exhibit courageous, outstanding, or noble characteristics to an extreme or excessive degree.

In my life, when I think of super hero, I can only think of one person: my father.

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EllipsisI’m sure you’ve noticed a certain lack of post. An absence, if you will. Funny how life sometimes swoops in and takes you off your feet– not always in a feel-good sort of way either. It’s been a long, trying 4 months that I’m surprised I came out of without embracing some horrible vice.

There are a few things no one warns you about when you return home from a stint like mine. First and foremost, reverse culture shock. Ok, so people do warn you about this, but reading about something and experiencing something is entirely different.  Continue reading

Final Destination: San Francisco

Well, it’s done. It’s over. My grand tour of Asia 2013 has finally come to an end. After traveling for so long, the thought of being able to acquire items and not wonder how to get rid of them in a few months time is an odd thought. Even more strange, that I sleep in just one bed, “my” bed. Stranger still, I have to get a job. Now that’s the tricky part.

A lot happened over the last three months, as I’m sure you’re aware. Don’t worry, I didn’t forget about you. I could never forget about you. Over the next few weeks, I’m going to play “catch-up” with you as I post some of my recent adventures. I’m happy to report that nothing devastating happend while I was wandering around these countries. So sit down, strap in, and no arms or legs outside the vehicle. It’s going to be a wild ride.


  • 50K in one day in the 2013 Yamathon
  • Tokyo from 440 meters up
  • Street food in Malaysia
  • A duck race on the beaches of Langkawi
  • Living it up in Singapore
  • Celebrating Buddah’s birthday
  • Hiking in for 7 days in the Himalayas
  • A new fear of leeches
  • Working with an orphanage in Pokhara
  • A Buddhist meditation and yoga retreat