I'm thinking that most of you reading this will know a lot about me already -- but on the off chance you don't, or if we have been out of touch for a while, here is a brief bio...
I am 48 years old, live in Agassiz, British Columbia, Canada (on the West Coast near Vancouver)-- have a degree in Social Work, and my last job was Clinical Supervisor / Program Manager for the Alcohol and Drug Counselling service provided by the Fraser Health Authority for Chilliwack.
On March 24th I will be celebrating 14 years drug, alcohol, and tobacco free!
I have 3 sons, Richard (31)who I am proud to say recently was selected through a rigorous screening process to work for the Motor Transport Inspection Agency -- and Scott(12)and Sean(8)who just both got great report cards! Redina and I have been together for almost 4 years now (and she deserves a medal for tolerating all of my idiosyncracies!)vShe is just finishing 10 years of working towards her Bachelor of Social Work Degree at UCFV, is doing her final practicum / internship at the Mission Hospital, and will graduate in June -- congratulations Sweetie!! Redina will be joining me either in Costa Rica or the Mexican Riviera for a well-earned vacation in May...
I myself, am about to embark on an 8 week trek around the globe, during which I may end up being on all 6 continents...
I am dedicating this trip to my best friend, Gregory John Wiens, who died on January 13th 2007, 71 days before his 50th birthday, after a long battle with diabetes and renal failure...
Greg was a wonderful person missed and loved by many -- we had lots of adventures trekking through the wilderness of British Columbia, and he asked me to spread his ashes along the trails, streams, and lakes of his favourite special place north-west of Lillooet in the Shulaps Mountain Range.
We often sat around the campfire talking about different places in the world we wanted to go to... unfortunately, Greg had his leg amputated and spent the last year of his life living in a hospital and getting around by wheelchair...
Accompanied by his ever-present spirit I will be taking some of his ashes with me and releasing them in Nepal at Everest Base Camp in the Himalayas, and at Machu Picchu in the Peruvian Andes...
Greg's legacy to me has been the inspiration to see some of the places around the world that have always fascinated me, while I still have my health, faculties, and senses...
2 1/2 years ago I had a heart attack at age 46 while playing ice hockey -- you hear about how for some people an event like this makes them "wake up and smell the coffee" -- well this did not happen with me, as I felt great before it happened, was determined not to let it affect my life, and recovered very quickly with no after-effects...
However, losing someone so close to me who I have known all my life, and the same age, has impacted me profoundly -- I now have a much more realistic grasp on the notion that my time here on earth is limited -- and while I do not fear death (as I believe we are all spiritual beings existing in these human bodies temporarily while here on earth, and that once we leave we will be on the "ultimate adventure journey" ...) However, I do want to experience as much as I can, while I am here...
I plan to keep this Travel Blog up as much as possible on the trip -- but don't expect to be able to post for about the first 3 weeks of April while on the Everest Base Camp trek... I will be checking my hotmail account regularly if any of you want to contact me personal / private...
Keep me in your prayers and thoughts -- love you all,
May 23rd 2007
Hi everyone, This will be my 2nd to last blog entry (I promise:) -- i just have to figure out yet how to download some of the cool video clips I want to share with you… All the time I was traveling through the Yucatan and Mayan Riviera I was trying to pull the lyrics and melody of “THE MEXICO SONG” out of the deep recesses of my mind (the memories are all there, it’s just accessing the storage that gets tricky:) This wonderful song was written by a good friend that many of you may remember from his days playing the lounge and coffee bar circuits in the ‘Wack and other places - Mr. Gordie Ross - now residing with his lovely wife Trish in their beautiful home on Saltspring Island… Gord and Trish take ... read more
May 13th 2007
Hi everyone, We have driven as far as we can without having to turn around... we drove 2 hours south of Tulum on a little narrow road through the jungle on a small peninsula to a place called Punta Allen. Redina took some pictures of these neat looking vultures with their iguana road-kill... We really are right on the beach now in a little cabana... Yesterday we went to the ruins at Coba and rode bicycles on paths thru the jungle to get to the different sites... i climbed to the top of one of the pyramids and got some nice pics of the area with condors flying above... Hope you are all doing well, take care Cam & Redina... read more
May 11th 2007
Hi everyone, All is well here down on the Yucatan peninsula... we walked up the beach and toured the ruins at Tulum today... quite spectacular, the El Castillo is right on the beach!! Also, great big iguanas sunning themselves on the pillars, and running around all over... Tomorrow we are going to drive into the ruins at Coba... and then head further south down to a place called Punta Allen... We are staying in a little cabana right on the beach... saw another stingray swimming around today... Hope you are all doing well, take care, Cam & Redina ... read more
May 8th 2007
Hi everyone, Yesterday as i am swimming around out in half moon bay, i see Redina and another woman on the beach waving me in... there was a big stingray following me around!!! Redina and i are having lots of fun here on the Yucatan peninsula... yesterday we went to look at some underground caves and rivers, and saw lots of neat animals like monkeys, snakes, bats, and wild pigs!! This morning we went snorkeling in a lagoon by the sea and there were all kinds of colourful fish swimming right around us! Hope you are all doing well, and take care, Cam & Redina... read more
May 5th 2007
Hi everyone, Well this is really a nice change from my adventures trekking around the globe... picked up Redina from airport on thursday evening and brought her down to Playa del Carmen, about an hour south of Cancun... We stayed overnite and then went back up the coast to a place called Puerto Morelos, had a nice lunch at Mama's Bakery and lay on the beach... I got a much needed haircut, and we went back to Playa and had an incredible lobster dinner!! Slept in this morning and then jumped in the car and headed further south to Akumal, which is just before you get to the ruins in Tulum... it is off-season here and we got a 2 bedroom HUGE villa right on the beautiful sandy beach that is $340 US per night in ... read more
May 3rd 2007
Hi everyone, Well my trek around the world has been completed... i flew from Cusco to Lima to Mexico City to Cancun yesterday and got in about midnite under a brilliant full moon... am now just south of city in little resort town of Playa del Carmen... Will be driving to airport in a couple of hours to pick up Redina and begin a relaxing vacation travelling around the Yucatan Peninsula and Mayan Riviera... not sure if i will be doing many more blog entries from here on, unless i can find a place that can help me to upload some video clips... Anyhow, just wanted to update you all... will probably still be checking e-mail regularly... Redina and i are flying home on the same flight, will get into Vancouver on Friday the 19th... hopefully ... read more
May 2nd 2007
Hi everyone, Those of you who are fans of Pink Floyd will know that the highlite of DARK SIDE of the MOON is the incredibly moving "The Great Gig in the Sky"... well imagine listening to that while you are sitting in the Sacred Lost City of Machu Picchu while watching the sun come up...!! And hard to believe, but today was even better than yesterday... similar to Everest, just not possible to put into words... absolutely overwhelming... I got up at 4:00 this morning (was too excited to get very much sleep) and along with a my friend from the UK, Richard Dawes, hiked up trail (close to 2,000 feet elevation gain) with our flashlights to get up there for the sunrise spectacular... I got lots of incredible video clips and pics... we then walked ... read more
May 1st 2007
Hi everyone, Ok, so there werent really any snakes (but i kept thinking everytime i reached up to another rung that a giant Anaconda was gonna get me :) !!! But the ladders were real.... What an absolutely incredible day i have had today... next to arriving at Everest base camp, this has been the best day of my trip... Got up early and took a 1 and half hour taxi ride with a couple of other guys out into Sacred Valley to catch 2 hr train ride up to Machu Picchu... got up here around noon... really magical little town here, got hotel, and then decided to go for a hike up to one of the peaks. It turned out to be an unbelievable experience... straight up over 1,200 feet of elevation, climbing log ladders ... read more
April 30th 2007
Hi everyone, Had a great day today touring through the Sacred Valley -- in spite of not getting much sleep last nite!! Woke up at 2:30 am with the walls vibrating with loud speakers from a disco not too far from hotel... finally at 6:30 am decided to get up and check it out, and there were still about 25 people in there dancing their butts off!! Went for a scout around and checked into another hotel which is much quieter, and then spent the day climbing around some really interesting ruins and archaeological sites on the Inca Trail... it was a nice sunny day for the most part with some spectacular scenery, and almost a full moon out tonite! Tomorrow will be getting on train and heading up towards Machu Picchu to stay in a ... read more
April 29th 2007
Hi everyone, Well i finally got off the ground yesterday in Lima at about 6:45am for the 1 hour flight to Cuzco -- surprise, flight was delayed because of weather (is this following me around, or what:) Flying into Lima was quite interesting, as you can see peaks of the Andes poking through the cloud cover like islands in a sea of white cotton... When i got into Cuzco around 8:30 am i went to the main area where all the hotels and tour agencies are located, Plaza des Armas, and there were thousands of people in the streets... i did it again, arriving some place where something extra special was taking place! There was big parade with marching bands and kids dressed in costumes -- this went on for hours, and was quite a spectacle ... read more