Canadian, David Welsford, doesn’t pay rent, nor does he have to battle traffic each morning on his way to work. He doesn’t even have a full time job. Instead, he’s living his dream on board a 50-year-old wooden boat he restored, called “Lizzy Belle”.
She was built in Novo Scotia, and when David saw her, rotting away on a wharf in Bridgewater, NS, it was love at first sight. The restoration was a labour of love. That was a few years ago, and it was then that he decided to take her out onto the open ocean, give up the luxuries of life on dry-land and trade it in for a life alone on the sea. “For me, what’s more important than having a big house is having a space that makes me feel good,” he says.
This short documentary, filmed by his friend Kevin Fraser, explores David’s unique maritime lifestyle, the sacrifices he’s made and challenges he faces – from putting food on the table and filling his tummy each day, to the loneliness he sometimes experiences or the lack of a romantic relationship with whom he can share his experiences.
“There’s always a way to make money. There’s always a way to live,” he explains. “If I have enough to go and have a beer and I have enough to go to the grocery store, if I can put enough diesel in the tanks of the boat, then I think I’m one of the richest people in the world.”
This is one man’s idea of living the dream. But the message is simple. Do what ever makes you happy. We only get one life, so let’s make sure we live it.
Every year, the city’s skies are filled with hundreds of hot-air balloons, all shapes and sizes. Launching into the sky at all hours of the day — many taking flight just before sunrise — the spectacle creates a sight and experience which is unique in the ballooning calendar.
Today is the 70th anniversary of VE day. Better people went before us and fought for our liberties and freedoms. They fought so that we can live a life that is free and that I could retain the right to write these words without repercussions. Sadly, if I was Russian, then I could very well end up in jail because a repressive dictatorial imp troll, know to the world as Vladimir Putin, has continued to erode the freedoms that generations who have gone before him fought to resurrect.
The image below is of a Ukrainian soldier captured in Shakhtersk, just outside of Donetsk. It won 3rd prize in the POY awards and it serves as a stark reminder that war has once again cast its shadow across Europe.
For most Europeans watching the evening news, it would appear that the war in Eastern Ukraine has finally ended, a result of the diplomatic efforts of Germany’s Chancellor Merkel and French President Hollande. That belief however is a fallacy. The war and human tragedy has continued unabated in Ukraine. Families have been torn apart, both literally and ideologically. And all this is happening with the backdrop of Russian ultra-nationalism, what with leather clad bikers making provocative statements by their insistence on driving through Europe to give a two-fingered salute to Germany and Europe, or rhetoric from Putin’s Kremlin that the Soviet army defeated Nazi Germany single-handedly, or the almost hysterical fervour that the Kremlin and their journalistic-apparatchik have attached to the planned parade through Moscow on May 9th.
No doubt Putin will take pride of place upon at the podium on Red Square, atop the tomb of Lenin, and once again bask in the glow of his sycophantic followers – a combination of corrupt Oligarchy and their families, and the ordinary Russian who is either naive and believes every word from the Kremlin media instruments used to fill the airwaves and newspaper columns with lies and propaganda, or who are too lazy to actually to question these lies and stand up to a dictatorship that is hell-bent on returning Russia to an era where its citizens are not to be trusted and who have to be controlled, lest they form their own opinions and become a problem or threat for the regime .
Whilst Russians are slobbering over themselves and their nationalistic pride over the defeat of Nazi Germany, they continue to carry out atrocities on their “so-called” brothers in Ukraine. These orange/black ribbon wearing Russian scum make me sick. As do ordinary Russians who refuse to do anything to remove the monster that is Putin, for fear that they lose everything. God forbid they lose their flash cars, their gold gilded mansions or their ability to vacation in Europe thrice yearly (a region that they enjoy spending time in, but whose values they detest…..odd that).
Unless ordinary Russians stand up to Putin and his dictatorship, then they deserve their lot in life. Thankfully, Ukraine is fighting to resurrect law and order and freedoms of press and free speech. It’ll take a while to mend the many wrongs inflicted during the Soviet era, but they are a resilient nation and are determined to join the reset of civilised Europe.
For all I care, Russia can rot in hell.
Slava Ukraine and I pray for the millions of lost lives who fought for the liberty I enjoy today.