Thursday, 28 March 2019

Frans Lanting - a Dutch Diamond

Frans Lanting is a national gem. A wildlife photographer respected all around the world he has produced some of the most astounding visual imagery ever seen. From the wildlife of Africa to the impenetrable jungles of South America he's seen it all and photographed more.

Thomas Kennedy, former Director of Photography at National Geographic sums up Frans eloquently, “He has the mind of a scientist, the heart of a hunter, and the eyes of a poet.”

A National Geographic stalwart, Frans has travelled the world documenting the natural world in action. His renowned LIFE: A Journey Through Time stands the test of time and brought him numerous accolades.

What really resonates with me is his ability to use his photography to draw in support and attention for conservation projects not just on a local but also on a global scale.

Frans Lanting's adventures and carreer mission is very close to what I as a young adult envisioned my dream job to be. Unfortunately I wasn't able to make it happen but I guess you never know. Never stop dreaming!

Thursday, 20 September 2018

Countryfile: 7. Golf

 "Golf is the closest game to the game we call life. 
You get bad breaks from good shots; you get good breaks from bad shots 
- but you have to play the ball where it lies."
                                                                        - Bobby Jones 

 Ever since my hockey career started coming to an injury plagued end I have been more and more intrigued about the game of golf. A mental and more personal sporting challenge. I will never tire of team sports, it's where my heart lies, yet the older I get the body takes a step back and the mind steps to the fore!

Having joined the local golf club and taken some lessons with the resident professional I am slowly making progress up the handicap ladder. There are so many aspects of the game that intrigue me. The only thing I need to be wary of is that I don't end up turning into one of those golf wankers. As far as cliche midlife crises go, becoming a golf twat has got to be right up there. 

Golf is a bit like a good woman. It entices you with its splendour and lures you in with fresh excitement, only to take hold of your emotions and ensnare you with it's power. You spend way too much money on it and just when you start getting excited about your progress, it slaps you in the face and says, no Marnix, not today. 

Nonetheless, my early mornings spent on the beautiful Frilford Heath Golf Course(s) will keep me coming back for more. My romance has only just begun...

Thursday, 31 May 2018

Countryfile: 5. Vegetable Garden

I ate a salad grown in my own garden today. I'm living off the land. Self sustainable.
I'm not going to lie, the real reason is my FOMO when Brexit kicks in.

Once we leave the EU who knows when we will see fresh Brussels sprouts again. The Frogs will undoubtedly stop sending us Artichokes and we can wave ciao ciao to the Broccoli!

So I took advantage of that first week in May which was the entirety of the British summer and got a right good haul out of it. I'm proud as peanuts to be honest.

Bring on Brexit!

 If we stick to one Salad leaf per meal we should easily make it to the end of June. So screw you Jean-Claude Juncker!

I might start growing an Orange tree next...

Thursday, 24 May 2018

Countryfile: 4. Wood Festival

I've got Wood 

Now that we live in the countryside we felt like we needed to attend a festival. Festivals are all the rage apparently, and if you don't go to a festival you're not young anymore. Or hip.

The particularly appealing prospect of this festival weekend was that the weather promised to be sunny and warm and it delivered. What wasn't so appealing was the arctic temperatures that greeted in the evening! Now I love camping in a tent, what I don't love is having to dress in the confined space of a tent in negative degrees Celsius and fumbling around in the dark trying to find a place to piss. I can't believe anybody enjoys that. And if they tell you they do, they're probably wearing loose, flowery pyjamas, sporting some sort of face paint, say na-ma-stey at the end of each conversation, smile way too much and even then, they're still lying.

What I love about camping is making fires outside my tent, cooking food on these fires and sitting around these fires drinking beer.

Vegan, gluten free, non-dairy, environmentally just kidding, just normal sausages.

Fire, Man and the Moon

The wood festival wasn't only about wood. There was also some hippie cuntry music that played out of a small wooden (obvs) shed. Some of them were actually really rather good.

However the highlight of the weekend would have to be Colin and Olive and their gong showers. To quote these enlightened spirits from their website, "As a symbol the gong represents wholeness. As a sound it is a calling to consciousness".

The Wood Festival is gonging brilliant and it has definitely called to my consciousness. Bring on next year!!