Be totally glad for red men

Posted on July 31st, 2014

I read a quote from someone from a book about a book about to come out, somewhere. Said quote touched on the idea of using the things that so irritatingly slow us down to…slow down. And to be grateful for the prompt.

Image via flickr.

Image via flickr.

The red man at the pedestrian crossing.

A red traffic light.

A queue at the Post Office.

The slow walker.

The delayed train.

We can use such modern irritants as an instant prompt to pause and reflect and sit calmly and look around and breathe deep. And to smile at our little impatient selves. Because there’s nothing like smiling at a little vulnerable, pained, simple version of ourselves to put things into an expansive, settled perspective.

I’ve written before about how smiling at ourselves is a great meditation technique.

So much of the “pain” – physically, psychically and energetically – in my life stems from my neck-strained, forced, rigid “plunging forward” into things.

I plunge forward with my dominant right leg, and have had multiple accidents on the right side of my body as a result.

I’m in a constant state of straining forward with my head, and have incredible issues with my neck (which is relieved whenever I “sit Read more

Slow Food and Outdoors Guide to Perth and Fremantle

Posted on July 29th, 2014

I’ve just come back from a jaunt over West. It was a quick one, but I got a very good feel for the scene there in just a few days. My bro’ Ben and I scouted the joint together.

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Riding the Kalamunda Circuit – possibly the best mountain bike trail I’ve done.

Perth and environs has some incredible produce and wine that fits to the “whole food”, locavore etc vibe. Interestingly, I’d say the city doesn’t really promote its paddock-to-plate wares as much as it could. Which, to be honest, is quite refreshing. The whole “local, hand-foraged basil leaf” palaver can wear a little thin after a while (isn’t a basil leaf just “picked”?).

As I say, I was there briefly, so my recommendations are limited. Thusly, I called on a few local hand-foraged “friends” to share their favourite spots, too.

Fremantle

* Bread In Common.  Even if you don’t eat bread, this place offers so, so much: slow-cooked options, locally sourced and house-made; communal tables; and a lovely heat coming off the big bread ovens where they make their very authentic sourdough (based on a mother culture that’s 25 years old). Check out the Bread In Common site. PS. Every full moon they have a long table communal dinner. Read more

What I eat on planes

Posted on July 24th, 2014

This is another one of those posts I do when the questions on a particular topic roll in too thick and fast for me to respond to on an individual basis. Every time I travel somewhere I cop this one: but what do you eat in the air?

Image via Favim.com

Image via Favim.com

I’ve covered off what I eat when I’m travelling, that is, what I eat in foreign countries when I don’t have access to a kitchen and familiar foods.

I’ve also touched on what I eat on the run, including toting my breakfast and lunch to work. But today we’re going to cover air travel in all its hyper-packaged, processed, over-salted glory.

I mostly don’t eat on domestic routes

On short flights I simply don’t eat. Honestly, all of us can survive 1-2 hours without food. Snacking is a confection of the food industry to get us eating more of their food. Up until the 1990s common wisdom was to eat three square meals a day. This is what our bodies are designed to do. They like to rest a good 4-5 hours between meals. But in the early 90s nutritionists modified this to the “5-6 small meals a day” prescription in response to their client’s crazy blood sugar issues (from eating too many sugars and cheap carbs).

My issue with snacking is also this: snack food is mostly crappy. And always so on planes.

Know this:

Because our sense of taste dilutes at altitude, plane food is jammed with extra flavourings and salt.

On international flights

On long flights, or if my transit and flying time is right on a meal time, I will generally pack my own food and eat it at the airport or mid-flight. This is what I do:

  • I use up veggies that will go off in the fridge while I’m away. I chop up red capsicum, beans, snow peas etc and put in a ziplock bag (these can be rinsed out, dried and rolled up taking up less room in my suitcase than a lunchbox). I tend to always have a wedge of avocado or cheese lying around. I put that in the bag, too (I always eat fat Read more