Friday, July 23, 2010

Connecting with others...

I was chatting with my friend Garry the other day about a recent holiday in beautiful Tasmania that he and his beloved had just returned from. I asked him what he'd found most life enhancing about the holiday. He responded that surprisingly, it was the conscious decision they'd made to connect with other people they met during their travels that had really made a life enhancing difference.

Now Garry is like me, we tend to enjoy our privacy and solitude, and don't normally do a lot of extroverted socialising. So on holidays, we'd tend not to spend a lot of time connecting and sharing with strangers. But on this trip, he'd decided to change that and see what would unfold through a more gregarious way of interacting with people. Along the way he'd met some really fascinating people and had his mind and life seeded with some interesting new ideas and opportunities. Connecting with others had been really life enhancing. I asked him to write something about his experience and share it here on the blog.

Here's Garry's report on a life enhancing holiday experience he had through connecting with and learning from 'Ron', one of the many people he serendipitously met in his travels:

Eco holidaying..  Ron's life enhancing perspective

Changing social values have brought forth, the modern 'eco holiday', broadly advertised and featuring a 'low impact' approach to the traditional holiday experience. A decade into this century, the travel/holiday industry has grown an increasing array of 'green' options, often with a concomitant price elevation. I'd like however to share with you a story based on a more basic approach to moving across this planet.
 Imagine this. Ocean Beach, west of Strahan Tasmania, the sun setting on an endless horizon. The Southern Ocean blue and peaked white with the energy of the wind. A man busies himself by a local viewing spot.

 A closer look, and he is removing rubbish. The type that litters most sightseeing spots. In fact he focuses on the bits of rubbish most people don't want to pick up, and he's equipped for the task with a 'grabber'. 
This is Ron, and his path across the land is defined by freedom, but he has made a deal between himself and the land. Whenever he stops in a location, he cleans it up. He always leaves his camping sites free of human rubbish. He considers it to be like a payment for the pleasure of staying. As the sun sets over Ocean Beach, he pays for the experience with his time and his efforts.

We talk about it and agree that sometimes just a small change in how we value an activity or experience can define a more rewarding path. He takes satisfaction and reward from both the natural beauty of the ocean scene and the fact that his passage has had a restorative influence on the space. Eco holidaying that is accessible to all.

So that's a vignette from Garry's experience of connecting with people and the life enhancing ideas and values that can be brought to your life through this.

I hope it inspires us all to task ourselves, to stretch out, to make more of our lives in every way, and to connect with each other and share life enhancing ideas and experiences.

smiles and life enhancing thoughts,


  1. Like Garry, I'm one who can be gregarious only occasionally! The effort (I should say, strain) often has pleasant results. I even find it difficult to be more outgoing online, so I'm going to push myself a bit here (hope you don't mind my doing it on your blog, Grant!)

    I've sent in an essay about a cookware memory,, to a contest and am supposed to invite people to read it (a very difficult thing for us introverts).

    About Ron--as we sat watching the waves recently, we saw several people picking up litter as they walked or ran along the path. Hope it's a trend!

  2. Hi Jean,
    We at least its a trend in my mind! I noticed myself picking up more litter than I normally would bother to in a carpark recently.. beyond this of course, the trend in Aus society has been for more responsibility with personal litter management.. Gov. sponsored profile raising has helped... collective social values don't change quick, but they DO change.

    thanks for the gregarious online comms.!


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