Good Morning!

Whenever I have a light bulb moment or feel like I should save something, whether it be a screenshot of a cool fact, a new song or an idea that pops into my brain, I jot it down on the nearest thing to me. Sometimes peoples faces, sometimes I shave my idea into a friends beard (as I can’t grow one yet). This comes in handy, because at some point in your life you can reflect back on that moment and go ‘ahhh!’ I have anecdotes from my hikes, or just random feelings in my life and these are great to look back on. I think shaving it into a friends beard is the best, because you only have a certain amount of time before it grows back! And your idea is gone forever, so best move sharp!

This mornings Anecdotes are as follows:

“It’s just ticked over 10.00 AM and I am extremely happy with my healthy positive start to the day, which I have no doubt will result in a happy Monday.

I started with a bowl of Muesli with added nuts for extra protein, topped with rice milk. Then I went on to have a large glass of Apple, orange and peach juice, freshly squeezed last night after my wonderful trip to the market. My beautiful Chilean house mates teach yoga, so without any hesitation when asked If I wanted to join in with their 5 minutes of Mediation and 10 minutes of yoga routine this morning, I jumped at the chance.

Immediately after I cycled the short but blood pumping 6km ride to work. I’ve just had a shower and raided the fruit bowl for the following; Banana, Plum, Pear and an Apple. I feel more alive, I feel more open, I, myself, feel good. I am thinking on a very wide spectrum right now. Today marks day one of the Yoga / Meditation practice, everything else is as norm, so far so good!”

Your morning routine really sets your day, and If I can continue this feeling of pure excitement towards life, towards the rest of the day, and towards people. I shall try my up most hardest, and this is a promise to myself, to try and maintain this healthy, exciting, mind opening, feel good routine. I haven’t changed my diet at all, just the exercise in the mornings. I am no yogi, and If you see me doing the exercises this morning you would most definitely agree I am far from complete. However, I am working towards something, I am creating positive thoughts in my brain from the minute I wake up. I provide my body with healthy food, and focus on my breathing, and being. Focus on being alive, and being grateful.

As we all know, exercise is very important and it can make you a lot happier.

“If you start exercising, your brain recognizes this as a moment of stress. As your heart pressure increases, the brain thinks you are either fighting the enemy or fleeing from it. To protect yourself and your brain from stress, you release a protein called BDNF (Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor). This BDNF has a protective and also reparative element to your memory neurons and acts as a reset switch. That’s why we often feel so at ease and things are clear after exercising and eventually happy.”- Full link here:  https://www.fastcompany.com/3025957/what-happens-to-our-brains-when-we-exercise-and-how-it-makes-us-happier

The way you start your day can have a huge impact on the rest of your day. If you feel sluggish, take a look at what you’re doing in the mornings. Are you dragging yourself out of bed unhappy? Eating a shitty 7/11 sausage roll and a $1 coffee only to jump on the train with thousands of other like minded souls. If so, be proactive – do something about it. It’s your life, you control the way you want to feel. I would like to make it clear that yes, this was my first morning of this new routine, and that of course there are other ways of finding happiness in the mornings, it’s what suits you. I used to make sure I had a healthy breakfast, listen to a lot of Reggae (or a genre which makes you happy) and take a leisurely stroll to work. Thus resulting in a happy start to the day. This alteration to my morning routine ticks more boxes for me and therefore will continue this way 🙂

Thank you, Happy Monday! ❤

 

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No Yin without Yang

Travel blogs can often be very deceiving, I’ve had a rough few days emotionally which I’m over now so I can reflect back and write with a clear mind. Of course it’s lovely to write about all of the amazing things, and more often than not I find myself waffling on about this awesome trip, or that isolated village I stumbled across. However, it’s not all pink roses and fairy dust, there is a lot that goes on behind the scenes, such as life.

At times travelling can be real tough. Tough on the mind, the body and the bank balance. Tough on relationships with friends, family or work colleagues. As with everything, life is about balance, and there is no Yin without Yang.

Missing out on family events or best friends having kids, getting married etc, or the celebration of friends and loved ones graduating. Quite a few of my close friends have kids and I’m missing out on the early years, the growth of a baby to a little monster, causing havoc around the house! These are some positive things that are missed, and they are hard to deal with at times. Then you have the negative shit to deal with, disagreements between loved ones playing on your mind, or having to deal with the death of a close friend or a loved one.

It’s rather overwhelming with all of the possibilities of what can be done. It’s important to take a step back, breathe, remember that I have my whole life ahead of me, and that I don’t have to fly around every country and complete everything I want to complete in the next few years.

Having said that, it’s hard. I have to move on from Australia this year and deciding what to do is very hard. It sounds silly, but the world is literally my oyster, and like many others, this predicament is a love hate relationship. It’s so beautiful to be able to have all of these bucket list options but at the same time it’s a #%&*! Behind all of the pretty pictures are relentless hours of research and grafting to save the funds for the trip in the first place. Then how you’re going to get around that non-native speaking country and after all of that you have to work out where you’re going next! And considering I don’t know where I’m going in the first place it’s rather hard!

Going with the flow works well in some places, but not all. Providing you have enough money you can rock up to some places and just go for it. Work it out there, speak to locals or travelers and just go. Some continents, like Africa or South America for example need intense planning whether you are on a budget or not. It’s not just about touring that country, having enough money to feed yourself and see the sites you want to see. It’s also about getting yourself out of that situation – the after plan. Covering the costs of flying to a country where you can work, accommodate, and feed yourself isn’t cheap and generally speaking, a country where you go to save money has high living costs in exchange for high wages.

In this case I’d  work out a budget for a month as I believe I  can get a job within a month (often less, I once left a job and within 5 days I had another job and I traveled from North to South Australia in this time too). I know my bills to live in Melbourne are around $1200 per month so if returning to Melbourne I know that’s what I need to survive. This is all before flights have even been purchased. So as you can see, the headache isn’t necessarily in the traveling, but the aftermath. Going for broke is no exit strategy, unless you want to end your travels very abruptly.

For now though, these things are minor bumps on the journey and are forcing me to look elsewhere, like permaculture farms, volunteering, wwoofing, workaway, HelpX or working on cruise liners to get me from A to B.

A beautiful thing about life is if you don’t like something, you can change it. If you don’t like the job you are in, or the city you live in, the people you live with or the “friends” you socialize with, change it. For me, personally, right now it’s the city. I have a love hate relationship with the city. Like most, I find it convenient, it’s a barrel of laughs on the odd weekend getting drunk with friends and going to events which you don’t find in little villages / towns.

Cognitive dissonance is how I feel at the minute. I feel oppressed by the city, trying to manipulate my mind through its genius ways. Making out as if I’m the mad one for caring about shit other than trump, a mortgage and a fresh pair of kicks. The city is like monogamy, keeping you restricted to one mate at a time, impaling your thoughts to stop them from extending past the concrete walls. Keeps you ticking along in a little bubble of thought, like Nemo wanting to know what’s out in the deep depths of the ocean, one must ride up and take the step.

So, what’s the plan Stan?  – I’ll be damned if I know. For now, I need to save money and stay focused. My contract ends sometime in May so I shall be back on the move then. Myself and a few friends are going to road trip up the East Coast and I shall be dropped off somewhere in North Queensland to jump back into the tropics of rain forests, mountains and the beautiful star lit sky. Until then, I’ll keep researching places to visit, keep saving and keep walking through the shit storm.

I spoke previously about the cost of travels, and obviously I can only relate to how I’ve traveled. I know there are cheaper ways to travel, but this works for me, for now. To save for the expenses of flights, and travels etc you have to go without a lot. You have to completely minimalize your life down, and ask yourself DO I REALLY NEED THIS?

I have an iPhone 4, it’s old, it’s shit, but it works. I have eaten the same curry pasta I made for the past four days in a row, it’s old, it’s shit, but it works. I replace my clothes with ones from charity shops, or unwanted clothes from friends. We share just about everything, especially accommodation to split rent costs, we drink in rather than out, eat in rather than out. Cycle rather than use public transport, hitch hike rather than catch a bus or post online to find a care share. There are so many ways you can actively work towards reducing your expenditures to make way for fun and exciting trips.

But guess what? You have a choice where you want to spend the ups and downs, and I’m quite happy carrying mine on my back, country to country. It’s very rare that I have feelings like this any more, but they do come around from time to time, and I think they hit slightly harder because I’m so used to being in a little bubble of happiness.

I’ve really enjoyed writing this piece, it helps me outline to myself that the grass is often greener on the other side, but with some perseverance you can grow your grass just as green.

Thank you for reading 🙂

Musical Fidelity IV

The Streets – Stay Positive

Damien Marley – Stand A chance

Eminem – One Shot Two Shot

Wu Tang Clan – Gravel Pit (Picked because after days of techno / psytrance @ a festival, we was sat in a cafe called psybus when they played some Wu Tang, mans went mental!)

The Rolling Stones – Hate To See You Go

The Skints – Bright Girl

Alt J – Fitzpleasure

Dubkasm – My Music (feat Buggsy)

Prince Fatty, Mungo’s Hi Fi feat. Top Cat – Herbalist

Gorillaz – Clint Eastwood – As they are meant to be releasing a new album this year, we’ll take it back there!

Lunar C – Salad Of A Wookie

Jay Z & Linkin Park – Numb / Encore

ACDC – TNT

Dizraeli – Reach Out

Klashnekoff – It’s Murda (Dirty)

Spectrasoul – Stay with me (Calibre remix)

Todays riddims

Babylon Festival

I’d like to start by saying it was an absolute honour to be a part of the first ever Babylon Festival, and I am thoroughly looking forward to returning in some years to see what it has become.

On the whole there were no negatives, but I am English and there is always a BUT. Plus, this is sort of an opinionated review of Babylon, so, here goes…

Fortunately Australia has a lot of space to throw festivals, thus being said, I’m not sure how many tickets were sold and I’m probably completely wrong here but I’m going to take a stab in the dark and guess there was around 5,000 people there, so reasonably small.

When you spread a huge festival over a big plot of land with a small amount of people, the vendors do really bad. After speaking to the owners of the stalls, a lot of them really struggled to sell much. Speaking to one lady she was very upset, it had taken her and her friend 25 hours to set up the stall and she sold hardly anything over the four days. Which isn’t great considering these portable stalls are run by self sustained beings who rely on a good festival set up to feed themselves and move on to the next. I think a simple re-route of the way the market stalls are placed would fix the problem, keep them in circulation so that people naturally wonder through them without knowing so.

Not being able to take alcohol into the festival site was annoying, we was aloud to drink in the camp site but not take any into the arenas. So a simple switch up from beer to spirits solved that issue as one did not need to lug a slab of beer past the security but merely hide a bottle of rum. The only other thing I can think of was the toilets, going back to porterloos was nasty! Compostloos all the way! But I’m sure that’s just down to funding, as Babylon grows, the more money it earns, the more money it can spend out on optional extras such as compostloos.

Now on to the positives!

I don’t really know where to start here, from the minute we got there they had done things I had never seen before such as hand out little finger sized plastic bottles which can be used as ash trays, not exactly environmentally friendly (although they can be recycled) but they were handy as! It means one can smoke freely, not have to worry about pocketing my roach or finding a bin, I can simply pop it in my portable ashtray! The bottle can also be used for others things, if you’re a naughty geeza! This is also a very smart thing to eliminate fires caused by smoking, as Australia is a very dry place, with high heat and baron land it is rather prone to fires.

Just before the entry to the stages there was an amazing 3D painted room which you could walk through, stare at with amazement and use as a great backdrop to a group photo as seen below! (3D Glasses were provided in a box in front of the room)


DCIM100GOPROGOPR4788.

The Organic Audio Stage was soo cool! It felt as if we were down in the depths of a natural amphitheater, surrounded by psychedelic lighting and people looking down on you it felt very grungy, the perfect environment for some wub wubs as the dub / dnb / glitch kicked in. I managed to catch a dude MC’ing on Sunday morning to some dub and he was slaying it! I wish I stayed longer but my belly was crying for some food.

Organic Audio Stage

The Mandala Stage was beautifully laid out in the perfect location with a large forest expanding behind it creating some astonishing light shows. The watering hole next to the stage enabled everyone to stay well hydrated and cool off in the blistering heat. The Mandala parasol certainly looked very pretty and a combination of space, good people and some thundering psytrance kept the dance floor damn sexy!

Mandala Stage

The Elements Stage, corr da bugga! I didn’t spend much time here I have to admit, maybe about 5 hours over the whole festival, 3 of which was spent cutting shapes to Carl Cox… And what a set that was! I think that set, combined with friends, pure joy and love was the best set I have ever seen, and I’ve seen some pretty amazing people. I would happily pay a lot of money to teleport back to Sunday 8pm – 11pm and do it all again. A friend from work recorded 160,000 steps over the weekend which equates to 75 miles of dancing haha!! And who said working out can’t be fun?! Below you can see the crew in full motion – 3 days in, out of our minds, legs broken, malnourished, dehydrated but not settling for anything less than a good dusty stomp!


The Country Club… Well I hope this is the stage with the beds and stuff, because I did end up there Sunday night, laying down on a bed trying to pick the dust out of my nose, clear my throat and rest up for 20 mins before hitting the Mandala stage up for a good old skank. I couldn’t sit down long as the ambient trance had me getting low and damn sexy with my crocodile. Sunday night I took it upon myself to take the croc for a good dance, considering we are in Australia, people love Crocodiles! So It wasn’t long before the puns were biting, “D’ya wanna stroke my croc?” “Cya later aligataaaaa!” blababa! I wish someone video’d me getting down with my Croc, but instead I can only provide a pic of me and my dance partner. (See below)


The Oasis, umm… Considering I camped about 150m from the Oasis, I feel slightly ashamed to say I never ventured over for a dance. I did go to check it out once, but turned around very quickly and headed for the Mandala Stage! I think my soul was searching for something, not sure what, but something that wasn’t at the Oasis.

Overall the festival was absolutely fucking fantastic! I was very shocked that it was Babylons first festival as the work that had gone into it was incredible. The land was beautiful, the community as always with Australian Doof’s was so moving. Even all of my friends said afterwards about everyone looking after one another, ensuring that people were hydrated, had sun cream, were generally in a good state of mind. I didn’t see one bit of trouble and I think it was the cream of the crop. When you go to big festivals like Rainbow, Earthcore, Maitreya etc there is so many people there that go to simply get fucked, make a mess and dance their tits off. The beauty with smaller festivals is you stand out like a sore thumb if you are that person, because nobody is like that. It’s about coming together, dancing together and enjoying the experience together.

I met a lot of people who I have bumped into at other festivals, and It was really nice to feel a part of the community even being a foreigner, people noticed me and came and had conversations with me visa versa. I bumped into some ladies who I had met in Bali, so to see them on the dance floor was amazing and it continues to amaze me when I bump into people I know around the world, it really is a small bit of a land we live on yet I never seem to get over it.


One of my friends came around two days later in tears, he had never felt so free, never felt so much love and to be part of such a beautiful community, on such beautiful land listening to such beautiful, spiritual music. Thinking about that sends shivers through my whole body, because I can fully understand the happiness, and the only way to deal with those happy emotions is to let is all out! Good on ya mate! Glad you had an amazing time! You know you’re doing it right when you make a 25 year old man cry from joy.

Thanks for reading folks, on to the next one!

Life sorta stuff!

Been a busy boy lately, running around like a mad man. Today marks one month at my new job, a month of being back in the rat race. A month of adjustment as I took my brain through what felt like an army exercise to get back into the swing of things. Flooded with more information than one can handle. Eyes sore from staring at a computer screen for 8 hours a day. Bags added underneath from the extra hours of self-sustainability, trying to search and search for my little part in this world. Things are coming together, slowly but surely. I am now dabbling in a lot of arts, looking into many business ventures and how I can sustain myself, work for me, and travel for me.

One of my friends has just moved into my room splitting the cost of rent between us. This is a common backpacker thing, the more you can save, the sooner you are back out on the road. I’ve just spent over 8 months sleeping on floors, hostels, sofas, beaches, benches, forests, mountains etc, etc. One would’ve thought that a bit of privacy would go down a treat. Well it did, for a month. Now I’m back sharing midnight snores, Saturday morning sessions and the odd ‘can you sleep down stairs, I have a lady friend with me tonight’. Life just got a little bit normal again, and yes normal is now considered exactly that.

I’m off to Babylon festival tomorrow (Friday 10th) with a load of friends, in fact I think there’s about fifteen of us going! I’m not very good at sticking with people at festivals or parties in general, so this will be a challenge! There is nothing quite like exploring on your own, the past two festival I have been too I was a lone ranger, and it’s a beautiful experience. Making new friends because you have no choice but to (not that I struggle for that, I can talk for England and then some!). Being more approachable as a single is something I have definitely picked up travelling solo, especially if you look a bit washed out and can crack out a good story or two. At the same time I’m looking forward to group festivities again.

It was International Women’s day yesterday, and I am a big fan of the female species. So I’d like to just say an out loud THANK YOU to every Woman on Planet Earth for not only playing a huge role in the reproduction of human kind but for cracking on with daily needs too. I will be forever grateful for your presence and I cannot help but think about my Mumma! Looking back on my Mothers selfless actions, choosing her sons over herself any time, any day. In fact, I believe my Mother is an Angel, I cannot express how much she has helped people throughout her life. From a young age she has been caring, and looking after people. Even now she’s 50 years young and only got a year left at University! Studying to become an Occupational Therapist because, it’s what she does! Looks after the world! Some jobs she has dealt with and put up with I really cannot imagine any “MAN” doing. So to all you wonderful womanly beings, Thank you! Thank you for caring!

Matty P over and out!

A less pixelated life.

 

For a while I’ve been working towards a cleaner, healthier life, one with less pixels in it. One with less fatty foods or sugary sweets. It’s all good and well looking after my physical being, but my mental being needs looking after too.

From minimalizing my material gains, to television time, or social media time. Less clutter in my brain leaves more space for useful knowledge. We are in the information age, an age where we have access to anything and everything we want to know, and us humans just haven’t quite evolved enough to absorb the petabytes of information we need to store. Thus resulting in mad reactions across the board. I fully believe that some modern mental illnesses, anxiety, depression, the need for attention and likes. The need to post a false lifestyle online for others to drawl with jealousy over comes from this egotistical way of life we live, and we’re all guilty of it, myself included. I’m no angel, but as a man who practices what he preaches, It’s time to walk the walk.

I’ve dramatically cut down my Facebook time over the past 6 months, going from an avid user who would share, post and cry for attention on a daily basis, to just checking it once a day for my notifications to see if anything important has happened. And guess what?! Nothing has! So It’s time to take it the step further, don’t cut down, cut it off.

“But it’s hard to keep in contact with people without facebook” – Well, this is what I’d like to find out for myself, and if I’m completely honest I think it’s going to boost my communication with friends and family throughout the world. We have become so content with the ease of access of reaching out to one another, we don’t actually do it. Since leaving home my communication with my best friends whom I was attached to and talking to all day every day has completely fallen through the floor. It’s as if I’m on a different planet, but I get it… I’ve been uploading regular pictures, regular status or blogs, you know my life, there is no need to send me a direct message. Or is there?

In the last 6 months I’ve been super productive, filling my time with reading, writing, travelling and meeting all kinds funky people from all over the world. I’ve been to 6 different countries, completely changed my diet, and I’m now putting the little time I have on this planet towards more rewarding subjects rather than relentlessly scrolling through absolute bullshit.

I started a new job a few weeks ago and have been catching the train to work everyday. Which never fails to amaze me the feelings of pure dread and depression in the mornings. Every soul on board is scrolling down the page of doom looking utterly miserable, commuting like a colony of ants to the daily 9-5 to smash out an 8 hour day of work. Statistically speaking the average office worker is only productively working 3 out of the 8 hours a day, probably spends the rest of the day watching bullshit media that has a knock on effect on your mood (I know this because I’m one of them, and no… I’m not writing this blog while I’m in work, or am I?) . It only took me a week of train journeys like that and I purchased a bicycle to ride to work instead, key thing there. If you don’t like something with your life, change it for the better.

I’ve wrote about this before but I’ll repeat, if the first thing you see when you wake up is negative, the rest of your day will roll on that feeling especially if you don’t have the mind control to radically switch your mood. Likewise, the last thing you see before you go to bed is negative, good luck getting to sleep. Example, if you walk out your house and see someone get hit by a car for the rest of the day, if not week you will be replaying that over and over again. So why is it different when we see it online? Because it’s not in person? Because you didn’t physically see that person get hit? It’s no different, your brain stores that video and then decides to replay it just before you go to bed when reflecting upon your day.

Change your reflection before bed to a positive one, everyone lays in bed thinking about the world just before we sleep, it’s a natural process. I smoke marijuana, and as you advocates know, this opens up your brain to a very spiritual way of thinking, and can often make it harder to sleep as your brain is so active. Accept that it’s active, don’t get angry, don’t roll around wondering why you can’t get to sleep, just accept that it’s not happening. Do something which relaxes you, read a book, listen to meditational music, smoke some more marijuana if that’s what gets you to bed. Shit have a whiskey if it’s going to relax you. Just don’t stress about things which cannot be prevented. Turn it around, think of all the amazing things you done today, starting with waking up, then be thankful for the food you eat, and the clothes you put on your body because there are 1.3 billion people that don’t even have that (Yes, we still live in a world where 1.3 billion people live on $1.25 a day). Be grateful for the small things in life, because those small things we take for granted, are dreams for some.

Anyway, back on subject. Facebook on the whole is a great app, after all it’s been downloaded over a billion times and covers just about every subject known to man, but it’s functionality is no longer needed in MY life. So It’s going, and I’ll report back in 6 months, hopefully with positive news. I’m also not doing this because I’m “unhappy” in life, because it’s quite the opposite, I’ve never been happier, but it doesn’t mean I can’t live a purer, cleaner, less pixelated life.

Thanks for reading gracious humans

P.s The Featured image is how I feel right about now, I took this picture hiking through North Island of New Zealand. Somewhere on planet earth you can find this place, near Ahipara.

Musical Fidelity III

Feeling beautifully relaxed this morning, so going to work from a nice chilled vibe up to something a little more hefty to get that Friday feeling going!

London Grammar – Strong

Bonobo – Bambro Koyo Ganda

Protoje ft Ky-Mani Marley – Rasta Love 

Florence and the Machine – You’ve got the love

Gregory Isaacs – Sunday Morning

Tarrus Riley – She’s Royal

Jimmy Cliff – Wonderful world, beautiful people

Mungo’s Hi Fi ft Eek A Mouse – Hire and Removal

Fantan Mojah – Dun Dem

 

Raging Fyah – Dance with you

 

Protoje – Who Knows feat Chronixx Shy FX Remix

Benny Page – Turn down the lights

DJ Marky & XRS feat Stamina MC – LK

Icicle – Arrows

Dub Phizix & DRS – Do one

 

Enjoy!