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guardian
An article I wrote for EcoWorldly was just syndicated by The Guardian. If you check out the front page of their ‘Environment’ section, you can find my article there under ‘Comment & Analysis’. You can link directly to the article here, titled “Japan Airlines trial biofuels on 747 flights“.

You can also check out the original article here, which was titled, “Japan Airlines’ 747 Flies More Efficiently with Biofuels than with Jet-A Fuel“.

And make sure to keep up with all of my articles over at EcoWorldly and around the Green Options Media network.

captain-lizzie_thumbA few weeks before the holidays I was able to attend a Wend Magazine issue release party, wherein a presentation was being given by one of Wend’s writer-ambassadors, Liz Clark.

Liz was able to secure the funding and sponsorships necessary to purchase and maintain her own sailboat, which she wittily christened Swell, and has already sailed down the West Coast of Central America and out across the Pacific into Oceania, on her way around the world. One of the central themes of her journey is to do it slowly; there’s no rush. She’s a surfer and the voyage is, symbolically as well as literally, an exploration of the world’s waves and swells. She also writes delightfully well, and you can read her updates at the iWend blog.

A few things resonated from her presentation. First of all, I really wish I was on that boat! The themes of her journey embody how I think people ought to live, and she’s definitely not wasting any of the incredible opportunities that life has handed her.

Most of all though, I was overcome with a great sense of peace and freedom while imagining her voyage. There’s got to be a feeling of emancipation you can get from sailing around the world that you can’t get any other way. Bobbing out there, in international waters, left entirely responsible for one’s own existence, you’re your own navigator and you’ve got to be intimately in touch with how the crescendos of the world undulate all around you.

I realized, living vicariously through her many photographs, just how jealous I was for that. Perhaps for some it’d be seen as a frightening and ragged abandon, but for me it’d be all too easy. For me the sensation is more of a vulnerable competency, an amplified uprising desire that surges and yanks at my diaphragm in a profound, primal way that’s been impossible to shake off since the presentation.

If I’m being honest, her story made me ask of myself what any truly good piece of music or writing will implore of its audience: While the world swells, how much longer can I stand to linger, stick around and feign?

buddha
As previously promised, the second edition of my short series on thinkers who understood inner travel has now been published over at Brave New Traveler. Predictably, it’s titled, “Five Eastern Thinkers Who Understood Inner Travel.”

Although as a fair warning, I’m quite discouraged by how it has been edited. My piece was the first article edited by their new editor, and the changes that were made by the editor were unnecessary, and they make the piece more simplistic and bland than it was originally written. Furthermore, there are a couple of grammatical typos which were actually edited in— not my doing (I wrote with a complaint and the errors still haven’t been corrected). So I apologize if it seems like the wit is ill-timed, or the paragraph transitions are awkward. Maybe you won’t notice because you didn’t see the original, but I wasn’t happy with it.

Nonetheless, you can check it out now and tell me what you think of the list. Who would you have listed? Oh, and I’m regretful to report, for those that took notice before, that it was more difficult to include female thinkers on an Eastern list than it was with the Western one, but I did look for them– I promise!

banner_australia

Continuing my escapades into travel writing, I’ve got a couple of articles posted over at the Australia Travel Guide at WhyGo.com.

Both of the articles are up there as features right now. One is titled “Hiking Uluru, and Why You Probably Shouldn’t“, and the other is titled Australia’s Rainforests: Daintree National Park“.

The idea behind WhyGo.com is to offer guides that go beyond just the How to‘s of travel; but to answer the Why‘s too, to inspire travel. That makes writing for them particularly enjoyable. I get to write passionately about the places and the adventures I’ve lived and loved.

For those that don’t know, I studied abroad and lived in Australia for a time, and I’ll be continuing duties at the site as a regular writer and guide for Australian travel. I’ve had an itch to get back to Oz since the day I left, but writing these articles is making it downright irresistible. Unfortunately a ticket to Sydney is just not practical right now, but at least the writing offers some consolation to my needy imagination.

Check out the articles, there will be more on the way. And wander the site for some inspiration on wherever you want to go next.

Over at pixcetera, there’s a wonderful collage of photos featuring various monkeys of the world. This got me all nostalgic about my passion for primatology.

Not too long ago, before deciding to go to graduate school for philosophy, I was actually intending to pursue my second major professionally instead– bioanthropology. I was going to become a primatologist and evolutionary scientist. As the story goes, philosophy won me over. But my passions in zoology and bioanthropology have never waned, and of course major tracks of my travels have been themed by my love of nature.

Most recently, I spent a little over a week in the Peruvian Amazon last spring– the highlight of my entire South American trip. After three and a half days on a rusty riverboat transporting goods and people down the Rio Ucayali (to where it converges with the Amazon!) from Pucallpa to Iquitos, I spent several days in Iquitos which included a day at an animal orphanage in nearby Padre Cocha.

While there, I had a handful of primate encounters. Literally– a handful. Pixcetera’s collage inspired me to post some photos of my own primate encounters below.

The rare Uacaryi Monkey - A Thrill for me!

The rare Uacaryi Monkey - A Thrill for me!

A Saki Monkey

A Saki Monkey

Capuchin Monkey - Swinging his way to mischief!

Capuchin Monkey - Swinging his way to mischief!

Howler Monkey - Sleeping soundly!

Howler Monkey - Sleeping soundly... for now

rodin-thinker-main_full
Over at Brave New Traveler, a short article of mine has been published, titled “5 (Western) Thinkers Who Understood Inner Travel.”

This marks the beginning of a new foray for me, as I embark into doing more travel writing. In this case, I was still able to incorporate some of my philosophical knowledge, so the transition shouldn’t be too abrupt.

Definitely check it out. I’m probably going to write a companion piece to this one on Eastern thinkers, so if you have someone you’d like to see on that list, let me know!

What 5 Western thinkers would you have included?

bigsky11
A couple of weeks ago, I headed off to Big Sky country to help deliver Montana for Barack Obama. In between knocking on doors and handing out reminders for people to vote, we were able to make the drive up to Glacier National Park for a few days.

Lucky for us, the Park was between seasons, so it was practically abandoned and it seemed as if we had the whole place to ourselves. Not even the Visitor Center was open, and we drove in and out of the Park without any rangers at the entrances.

glacier1

This was what we woke up to in the morning!

Although we were certainly disappointed that Montana still ended up a Red State, the colors are changing. And there was a great sense of relief upon the election’s end which could only have been symbolized by the big blue skies and quiet, open spaces of Montana, where the past seems to dissipate into the air and the future seems to splay out on the horizon. Yes, things are changing. Perhaps it was the leaves, the season, the glaciers which seemed to be receding before our eyes, or perhaps it was just the election itself, but driving home– and it felt like home where we were driving– it was impossible to shake the omnipresent sense that it was coming: change.