Traffic in a Mumbai Slum

The chaos and fascination of India really came into being along a stretch of road in central Mumbai,  the third most populous city on earth.

A recent trip there was intense,  a bit like this moment in a Mumbai slum traffic was…

May 10, 2014 at 11:09 am Leave a comment

Wrecking Our Only Home – Thoughts on PM2.5 and What it Symbolizes

china-pollution_0Looking outside my window as the train speeds by the Chinese countryside at over 300km/h, I am awed not by the engineering feat and technology that is taking me at this speed but by the incredible state of pollution that this and other advancements have helped create.

A depressing sight of a gray/brown sky, dead trees, plastic bags, depleted soils, countless ruined building and whole villages litter the land and sky. Millions breathing this foul, thick and strangely saccharine air. The smell of failed human nature, greed and death is filling my nostrils and repulses me.

Some questions beg to be asked as I look out that window, hearing people cough around me and I too actually gasp for clean air to breath.

I am now facing the fate and future of the planet? Is this unabated consumption driven “progress” worth it? What are we doing to ourselves? What are we thinking? Will we ever be able to think beyond our immediate whims?

Our race to make things go faster, easier, lower costs, higher yield and so on are wrecking our only home. Short-sighted human self-centeredness, greed, the constant need to outdo others and the inherent drive to achieve more is destroying the earth. Nowhere is this more apparent than in Eastern China.

The facade of wealth, its un-sustainability and the perceived better and improved life will eventually come tumbling down. It already has so in great sections of humanity that most of us in the Western World have not faced directly.

Time for a major reset is due, not only in this part of China I have observed today but throughout this sick and slowly dying world. A reset of thoughts and actions. A reset of priorities, real wants and needs.

Resets that needs to begin with a deep revulsion of what each of us to some extent is guilty of doing to our only home.

December 23, 2013 at 12:00 pm Leave a comment

Gray Beauty

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Surrounded by beauty but without you it’s all gray

The cuisine is exquisite but without you it’s just food

Wine is fabulous but all alone, its just a drink

The sun is shining radiantly but without you, it’s just light

I miss you, without you all is gray, not that great

The music is dull, food needs more salt, and the wine needs more age

You brighten up the sky, liven up a room, turn a meal into a feast

With you, the flowers are more fragrant, the air is fresher

With you, the music would be a bit louder, the beats a little faster

That wine I’m now drinking would just taste better with you here

Come and make the day a little brighter

Come and make my steps a little sprightlier

You complete me and make things more worthwhile

Wish you were here, I miss you…

December 22, 2013 at 11:59 am Leave a comment

Stop…Think…then Act!

0-wrfgszH0hQzGZzJeThe pace of life, ever increasing in speed. The complexity of things and intricacies of often unimportant and mundane minutiae. Endless debates on politically fueled subjects.

Running to and fro after things that are not needed and worrying over other things we don’t have and events that have not happened. Countless other distractions eating up our precious, dwindling time, making us grow old before we have to and often not wiser.

Putting undue importance and reverence on vain pursuits down paths that do not lead anywhere. Making our already busy lives busier for the sake of unfocused and unplanned goals, often making us unfulfilled and feeling “empty” at the end of our course.

Perhaps we must take a bit of that time we fritter away to consciously tell ourselves to STOP, take the time to think and meditate deeply on what is really important. Take the time to “smell the roses”. Take the time to look around and appreciate the simple things of life that have been given to us without always having to add or subtract to it unless really necessary.

If those things are good, then be thankful for them. If bad, then learn, grow, solve them if you can and then move on from them.
Slowing down, consciously meditating on what we are really doing, planning in our minds our paths without just “going with the flow” of what everyone else is doing takes deliberate action.

Try just saying STOP, take a TIME-OUT, take a pause of what you are preoccupied with, meditate and really THINK about what you are doing with that precious life you have and the time left in it.

Once you have figured it out and perhaps wishing to steer yourself on a new path, actively putting those thoughts and meditations into sincere ACTION will make the difference between a life actually lived and just confirming what Thoreau once said; “Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them..”

Which path will it be? STOP, THINK and then (most importantly) DO something about it…

October 5, 2013 at 9:24 pm Leave a comment

Grape Crush in Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia is in the middle of the grape harvest and crushing grapes is the first part in the winemaking process.

The following little video shows a little bit of what I have been up for the last couple weeks with another week to go. This year’s harvest will be a very good one due to the perfect summer conditions we have had.

October 9, 2010 at 1:34 pm Leave a comment

Back from London




London

Originally uploaded by Rivard

Just back from a busy week in London. Great things are going on, will update later… I enjoy the vide in the UK (also the beer is great ;-)

I love London!

July 2, 2010 at 8:20 pm Leave a comment

The North Koreans don’t like to be on Camera

On a recent trip to a border town by North Korea, the North Korean entertainment did not like to be filmed…

We did have a great meal at a North Korean restaurant which caters to mostly Chinese tourists where the North Korean staff entertains the guests, sign North Korean songs which are sometime patriotic or even propaganda based showing off their country. That in itself was nice and certainly interesting to us heathens but when the camera came out to film one of these ladies signing us a song, the mood changed a bit…

June 9, 2010 at 11:29 am Leave a comment

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Lover, father, global winemaking consultant, winemaker/exporter, hobby farmer, author and modern-day nomad...

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