If you going to be a cab driver..live in Vegas

Good Morning peeps. Friday night on the way to the hotel in Vegas, the taxi driver was trying to convince us that it was a cool evening, temperature 96F. It was hot but i  guess everything is relative.

We are here for a health and wellness conference. On Saturday we took a cab to a ‘discount’ shopping mall. I hate shopping, to be honest I dont think Jo likes it either. On our way out of the mall after walking around for an hour and a half, i had to remind her why we paid a cab to take us there. We were about to walk out empty handed.

Jo went back and bought some sunny dresses which i thought was a little odd until she announced they were for ‘the Anguilla trip’, news to me, but oh well.

On the way to the mall we had a nice Cuban taxi driver, who took us along the scenic strip. On the way back the driver went on the highway, i pointed out to him that we had taken the scenic route on the way there and he did not seem too impressed. He said it was faster by $3, but it was the start of a new adventure, never a dull moment in my life.

Before we went to the mall, a lady told us that she had gone to Walgreen to buy water. After the taxi dropped us off and as we were entering the hotel we asked the door person to direct us to  the Walgreen. She told us to go through the Casino, turn left past the conservatory, pass the convention center, then go over the City Center bridge and on the south side of the road. Too much information but off we went.

We did a few left and rights through slot machines and a bunch long faces, i dont quite get the attraction to betting, anyway, we came to a box office where we stopped and purchased some tickets for Cirque du Soleil. We also got a map and some new directions to Walgreen.

As we passed the front desk, we noticed that the background had transformed from a fish tank to a garden. Explains the name Mirage I guess.

We had arrived at the hotel at night and had not seen some of the attractions like the beautiful birds on display.

When we got up that morning we had done some swimming but as we passed by the pool on our way to Walgreen we realized how much we had missed, it seemed so different.

Are you getting the picture? Its almost like we were in a new place from the night before.

I know its getting long but bare with me.

We got to the Walgreen which seemed like miles away from the hotel. As we were leaving the store we asked the cashier for direction back to the Mirage hotel. She said go south for about a mile and its on the east side. How was that possible?

We started walking to the hotel in 106F temperature  and i was totally confused so i began to reflect. Taxi dropped us off, we walked through the casino, purchased tickets then walked for another 10 minutes in the wrong direction, but. How on earth could we be 1 mile from the hotel. I asked Jo for the map that the lady in the box office had given us, sure enough the taxi driver had dropped us at the wrong hotel.

Do you think it was on purpose?

As always

Dont forget to greet a total stranger today.

PS. the taxi trip to the hotel as $22.50, back to the airport $14.50, oh well. Vegas is nice but they need some smoking bylaws, probably wont be back as a result.

Ive been called lots of things.

Good Morning peeps. Last week someone called ne an idiot for a comment i made in this Yahoo group im a member of. Didnt really bother me, i get called that a lot of things mostly for my views or lack of, depending on which side of the political fence you are on.

Right here on FB this dude compared me to the Jeffersons because I did not share his point of view. Not sure exactly what he meant maybe one day ill ask him.

Ive been defriended several times on FB for harmlessly saying the ‘wrong thing’.

In addition to those names ive been called ‘bad Tony’, ‘mischivous Tony’, ‘ignorant Tony’ the list goes on and on. I can give you some more if you ask. Needless to say but I do have a reputation.

If you ask my wife Jo to describe me she would say ‘sweet handsomeTony’, my friend Bassam calls me ‘naieve Tony’, my sister Mryna called me ‘innocent Tony’ and the best one comes from my baby sister Jane who calls me ‘TonTon’, dont ask me why, when she wants to scold me its ‘Tony macaroni’.

So you see i have many sides. During my annual review at work my boss ask me not to be so aloft with my coworkers, ive been meaning to look it up in Wikipedia, im sure it has more than one meaning.

I am a very loyal person, it started when i was very young and i liked a certain girl, i didnt care who liked her first not even if it was my cousin. It got ugly, he had his friend hold my hands behind my back and he put a good beating on me. When i got home all bloody and told mom what happend she lectured me and explained that family comes first. After that day, i changed, loyalty is my middle name.

If you asked me to describe myself i have one thing to say, ‘ill never hurt a fly’. I want that on my grave stone.

Yesterday i decided to try and wash the blue out of my white tshirts. On Tuesday, my last day in Toronto, i got a little lazy and pushed all my clothes in the washing machine. In the mix was a blue shirt i had not washed before, all my white tshirts, ten of them turned blue. I didnt tell Jo, she has a thing about separating the colours.

I washed them twice with bleach, didnt work. I decided to hang them outside, maybe the sun will make them white. I took them on the balcony and was about to hang them on the railing when i notice all the dirt. I quicked returned inside to get a rag. Guess what, a fly followed me, actually two flies. You know those big arse ones with huge eyes and multi coloured head.

I got a piece of newspaper and was chasing them around the house. Never hurt a fly my arse, it is just a figure of speech, i was gonna kill these two suckers.

I chased them around for a while, finally i believe they were getting tired, one of them landed on the kitchen sink, piece of cake. Without thinking, thunk, newspaper landed in the wrong spot, right on a glass. It shattered.

It took me a while to bandage my cut, even contemplated going to the hospital. Yes my reputation is intact, ‘id never hurt a fly’.

Fyi. Didnt see the flies again, im thinking they had their fun and just left, the screen door was still open. My t’s are still blue.

As always

Dont forget to greet a total stranger today.

Home is where the heart is

Good Morning peeps. When you travel on vacation you generally ‘Leave home’ then ‘Return home’. They say home is where the heart is. Well my heart may be in a lot of places.

A long time ago whenever i went to StKitts i would tell people that i was going home. Today people always ask me, ‘when was the last time you went home?’. If the question came from someone from SKN, i would assume they were talking about SK.

Yesterday as i was waiting to board the plane in Toronto for a flight back to Calgary i got into a conversation with this nice young lady. She asked me if i was going home. I became conflicted. In that instant i was not sure how to answer.

I love Toronto, Ive lived there most of my life, called it home for a very long time, although deep down SK was always home. Im guessing you are allowed more than one home, where you were born and where you live.

When the young lady asked me if i was going home, i said yes and for a moment i had a sense of sadness that i was no longer calling Toronto home, like i had abondoned it. Its silly i know.

Later when i arived in Calgary, i must admit it felt great to be home. Yes i was home, Calgary is now in my soul.

A love triangle.

If you are allowed two homes, your birth place and where you live, what do i say when im going to Toronto to see the kids?

Hmmmm dilema but ill deal with it next time i go.

As always

Dont forget to greet a total stranger today

Its important to be a good example.

Good Morning peeps. Happy father’s day to all dads. I could stop here but you know me, i always have a story to tell.

We have two sons and two daughters. Being a dad comes with a whole lot of responsibility and no owners manual.

Kids are born with this built in ‘wanna be just like my parents’ instinct and therefore we should be good examples.

“Instinct or innate behavior is the inherent inclination of a living organism toward a complex behaviour” Wikipedia.

As fathers and along the journey and if we have the awareness we can pick and choose characteristics from our parents we want to emulate and filter out others we don’t want to pass on to our kids, but its not easy, in fact it takes a lot of hard work. Imagine if you had a rotten dad, your job as a parent would probably be a lot more difficult.

The choices we make directly impact our kids instincts for the rest of their lives. How many times have you heard your adult children say, ‘but you did it too dad’.

I became aware of my responsibilities as a father at a very early stage. Having had great parents helped.  Repetition of positive messages was always foremost on my mind. No, im not perfect and made lots of mistakes but today i observe my kids instinctively teaching their kids the lessons i thought them without being fully aware of it.

I didnt know my dad’s dad, but I heard a lot of stories about him. I heard he was a story teller just like my dad. Gosh my dad could tell stories, maybe one day ill tell you his version of how he met my mom. There is a story that my dad told us about how he got to St Kitts, he said he swam from Anguilla on his back because he could not afford to take a boat. I told my kids a similar story except i swam to Toronto. I don’t know for sure but id hazard a guess that my grandfather swam from Ireland to Anguilla, killing sharks along the way, rejecting offers to be rescued by passing boats. Its a family tradition. My dad swam on his back, his suitecase on his stomach away from the water to keep it dry. My story was even more grandeur.

Swimming from Toronto to Calgary would be quite an adventure. Cant wait for my sons to have kids. Its a male thing.

When i was growing up my dad never participated in my sports activities. To him not working was a waste of time. He didn’t have to, he was still my hero and yes i did some filtering. He had little education but he was very successful in business and a great provider and as it turned out he was the quintessential helicopter parent. Back then we called it something else.

I was 13 when i went to high school. I can remember having to hide from my dad after school so i could be with my friends. It took him a while to let go and to get the messsge that he did not have to pick me up after school. It was embarrassing.

I remember quite vividly how I wanted so badly to be like him. Of course i didn’t realize that i didn’t have to try, those instincts, some filtered, were already part of me and now they are part of my children. Im sure they also have ‘not like dad’ filters, we are all human.

Here is a tough question.

Would you be proud if your kids were like you? Be completely honest, if you said no or you are not sure and you have small children you still have time.

Remember your kids instinctively look up to you, so make it count.

Happy father’s day. Ill go check to see if those rotten kids gave me any gifts.

As always

Dont forget to greet a total stranger today.


Getting old is all in the head.

Good morning peeps. They say getting old is all in your head, i say it shows up when you run also.

Yesterday morning i set out to go for a run. I walked the first 100m to get a little warmed up. At the end of  the 100m is a fork in the road where i had to make a decision, left or right, left is a downhill and right is an incline, either way will bring me back to the fork.

Coming along the track was a older guy, he was going to my right, up hill, i decided to follow him. It didnt take long for me to realize the old dude was fit. I was half way up the  climb when he disappeared.

The idea was to have someone help me set a pace. Normally i go out with Jo who is not much of a runner so i look like a champion running with her.

The next guy that went by was a marathoner for sure. Decided not to even try.

I was going along at my pace, its funny when you are running other runners acknowledge you. Its like ‘yea i feel your pain’. I wonder if it was that obvious. Ive never actually seen myself run, to me i look like the wind, if i had hair it would be a specticle to observe.

At about a mile or so i heard someone behind me, i looked back, there was this young woman pushing a baby going at a good clip. Haha i can do this.

As she was going past, its like she knew what i was thinking, she looked at me and i can swear she said, ‘try to keep up old man’.

Why did she think i was old? Was it the way i was running? Maybe she saw the agony in my face.

Ill stick to running with Jo she makes me look good.

As always

Dont forget to greet a total stranger today.

When there is plenty you must still decide.

Good Morning peeps. Jo is away, this morning i made my shake and went in the backyard to enjoy the beautiful weather. The plants are looking great and the hedge is coming along nicely. Birds are my favourite next to female humans to look at.

In my neighbour’s yard there is a shed with some lattice work on the back of it, which attracts a lot of birds. Its like a lovers lane for birds. Great place to observe their behaviour.

As im looking there is this lil guy, he has his eyes on this one chicky bird. He is dancing, fluffing his feathers doing his thing. It appears that she is not interested in him, everytime he gets too close she hops away. The dude is not giving up.

Just a few feet away from him there is another female who seem to have the hots for him. I believe she thought he was coming on to her with his bird dance and she was definitely interested. I think she is doing everything to get his attention but he is totally ingoring her.

Well female bird number one flies off. Poor guy. That is when he tried to acknowledge female number 2. It was around the same time female number 2 sees male number 2 just above her. He was silently observing the goins on. All he had to do was one bird wing shimmy, she was sold, she was so worked up she went off with him. Trallop was my first thought.

Sounds like a human story, have been there many times.

Not being a bird whisperer i can only surmise male bird number one was inexperienced, male bird number two simply allowed him to do all the foreplay knowing ‘a bird in the hand is worth two in the bush’.

As always

Dont forget to greet a total stranger today.

It was no biggie

Good Morning peeps. Folks im here is say it was no biggie. I hear a lot of stories about people speeding on their way and getting a ticket. If you are lucky the cop will escort you. Husbands and wife get into knots trying to make decisions. It can be stressful for some people. I always ask why. Everthing happens in its own time.

Then you get there and wait. After all that fussing, putting your life at risk and nothing. Can be quite fustrating.

Like no body business then it happens, slippo out it comes and you start to count, 10 10 2 2 1 1. Yes perfect just like you planned it.

Me i went to bed, slept like a baby, didnt know a thing. When i got up this morning found out im a grandpa. Absolutely no stress. The dude has class.

Oh yea my daughter is fine.

As always

Dont forget to greet a total stranger today.

Rain rain go away

Good Morning peeps. About 3 weeks ago i turned on my lawn sprinker to try and stimulate the grass to grow, it was brown, oh how i wished it would rain.

Well it started to rain a few days later and it has not stopped and its all my fault, yes i wished it would rain.

Why stop now, since im on a roll i wish for a Mustang Shelby on fathers day.

Rain rain go away and come again another day.

Opps, I didnt mean that, you never know who is listening.

As always

Dont forget to greet a total stranger today

My new way of living

Good Morning peeps. Today im cleansing, have not eaten since yesterday evening and i wont eat untill Monday morning. Just fluids and some stuff Jo gives me. I try to do it once a month.

I could have never imagined i would be saying what i just said. I have ‘dieted’ before but its really hard to do. When i started on my current path of a healthy lifestyle, i wanted to approach it differently. It took me 30 years plus to get to where i was. How do you undo that?

I started slowly, going from my daily 4 cups of coffee to 3 then 2 then finally i was able to stop the craving. Same thing with bread, eggs and rice. The plan was never to stop eating these things entirely, just to break the ‘craving’ habits. I would eat lots of eggs, could not get enough.

Since i broke these lifetime habits of craving certain foods, which took several months, i am now able to have a coffee with my friends and not  ‘need’ another, same with the eggs, boiled. I try to stay away from the bread and white rice and fry foods, but for a different reason and id be lying if i said i dont sneak once in a while.

Some things may take another lifetime to overcome, the secret is control. I have not yet quite mastered the Corona bad habit. Im human.

One of the first things the doctors ask you to cut out when you show up in his office with arthritis is rice and bread. Im on a preventative plan, damn i just had a craving.

An educational institution in England, Oxford I think, did some research and report that most men, something like 90% would not admit they were on a diet. I can understand why, people make fun of you. Just over 50% would admit to working out in the gym.

Today im too old to care what people think, but its quite sad. I am at the size i was when i was in my mid 20’s and folks tells me i need to eat more, go figure. For my birthday Jo gave me some stylish body shirts, nice, she says i should show off my body. I was expecting a Mustang Shelby.

Want to hear something interesting, Jo has turned this healthy lifestyle thing into a business. She has been able to convince 30 plus folks to join her, only two of the 6 men actually lasted 2 weeks, one is me, the other lost 60lbs. Some of those 30 plus folks convince others and now her organization is now well over 200. She is on a mission to make a difference in peoples health.

We have found that men are more prone to peer pressure when it comes to diet and exercise.

Some people say what Jo is doing is a pyramid scheme. I say who cares, we have loads of energy, we walk between 3 and 5 miles every other day, i climb 12 floors twice a day at work, she does the gym every other day, went from a size 14 back to a size 4, same size she was when we met and we sleep like babies. I say its a good scheme and we get two free meals each daily.

We share it with other people. Its more like a quick ‘to good health’ scheme.

So here i am, people are always asking if i plan to eat like that (2 protein shakes a day and one regular meal), for  the rest of my life, I say why not. Although i can cheat a little, you dont get fat or skinny overnight.

Here are some facts about my day, the two shakes total less than 500 calories with plenty muscle building Whey protein. Each meal takes around 7 minutes to prepare and consume. Sometimes i have to remember to have lunch because i am not hungry. That leave me between 1200 and 1400 calories short from the recommended daily intake.

I so look forward to supper.

Jo is a great cook and we eat out once a week. Yes we tend to pig out a little although we do include lots of fruits and vegetables.

Its all good and Jo will be happy to explain it to you if you were interested in this win win healthy lifestyle ‘pyramid’ scheme.

If that sounded like a commercial, sorry, ill be back to my normal self tomorrow.

As always

Dont forget to greet a total stranger today.

Happy Birthday to me.

Good Morning peeps. One year wiser. Jo asked me what i needed for my birthday. Pay close attention, she said needed and not wanted. The plan i think is to go out and buy me my needs, like underwear and t-shirts etc, annual maintence, replace the old. She said i should make a list.

Well i did.

When i was a kid, early teens, I read a book called ‘think and grow rich’, im not exactly rich, like millions, although i did follow some of the advise in the book.

The trick is to dream it, write it down, visualize…..

I decided to copy a page from that book when i make up my list. Think big.

Mustang Shelby
House on the beach in the Caribbean.

Why do i ‘need’ these things? I will enjoy them, simple as that.

Just in case my wish is too big for this year, ill just have a second list.

New runners.

Thats about it.

Al always,

Dont forget to greet a total stranger today.