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Showing posts with label What Inspires You ?. Show all posts
Showing posts with label What Inspires You ?. Show all posts

Are You At The Top ?

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1. You clearly understand that failure is an event, not a person; that yesterday ended last night, and today is a brand-new day.
2. You have made friends with your past, are focused on the present and are optimistic about your future.
3.You know that success (a win) doesn't make you, and failure (a loss) doesn't break you.
4. You are filled with faith, hope and love; and live without anger, greed, guilt, envy or thoughts of revenge.
5. You are mature enough to delay gratification and shift your focus from your rights to your responsibilities.
6. You know that failure to stand for what is morally right is the prelude to being the victim of what is criminally wrong.
7. You are secure in who you are, so you are at peace with God and in fellowship with man.
8. You have made friends of your adversaries, and have gained the love and respect of those who know you best.
9. You understand that others can give you pleasure, but genuine happiness comes when you do things for others.
10. You are pleasant to the grouch, courteous to the rude and generous to the needy.
11. You love the unlovable, and give hope to the helpless, friendship to the friendless and encouragement to the discouraged.
12. You can look back in forgiveness, forward in hope, down in compassion and up with gratitude.
13. You know that "he who would be the greatest among you must become the servant of all."
14. You recognize, confess, develop and use your God-given physical, mental and spiritual abilities to the glory of God and for the benefit of mankind.
15. You stand in front of the Creator of the universe, and He says to you, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant."

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Snowmobile + Kite = SuperStoke

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... people never cease to amaze me ! I mean, when you watch Youtube videos like "People Are Awesome", it's crazy what we, as human beings, are capable of !

Sometime it seems like our physical, mental, and creative capabilities are limitless !

... I mean, who would ever thought of using a kiteboarding kite with ...a snowmobile !

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Are You Proud Of Your Job?

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It's Monday morning... time to go to work...

Are you proud of the job you do ? Does it make you happy ?

"It pays the bills" - is it the only reason you do your job ?

I take a lot of pride in my weekend job... It's not much, it doesn't pay much, but it makes me extremely happy...


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How Much Does Your Job Suck ?

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"All paid jobs absorb and degrade the mind."~ Aristotle

In my understanding, it doesn't matter how "cool", well paid your job is.
Real freedom comes from doing what you want, when you want, however you want, with whoever you want... When you work for somebody else, you don't have these options...

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Living In The FUTURIA

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... the idea of living in RV or a trailer still seems to be exciting to me ! But why live in an old, beat up camper, when you can live in the FUTURIA !!!
The FUTURIA sports+spa is the first show truck worldwide with an integrated whirlpool on the nearly 11 m sun deck with yacht flooring. The lifestyle trailer truck also houses a roadster garage, a luxurious lounge, a berth, a powerful sound system, a fog machine and under floor illumination.

The best thing about this luxurious caravan ? It's only $ 840,000 !!!
I'm just $839,000 short :(
Can you spare some change ?

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ExtraHyperActive Adventures And Achievements of 2012

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The end of the year is my favorite time ! It's time to look back and reflect on your goals and achievements, and time to make new exciting plans for the upcoming year !

As you remember, last year I started using a new ( and extremely popular by now ) social site Pinterest. As I mentioned in my last year's post, "My Bucket List on Pinterest"  this web site helped me keep visual focus on my goals, dreams, and aspirations.

The more clearly you are able to visualize, the faster you will be able to get your goals achieved. If you don't believe in goal setting and  visualization, let my Bucket List on Pinterest be a living proof that whatever you can imagine, can be real !

Let's look at some goals/dreams/plans I had a year ago, and see how I made it happen :

1 - Learn to kiteboard.

Not only did I have a great time kiteboarding in Bellingham, I spent three glorious months in Florida working on my skills.

2 - Go on my first cross country road trip

I've been dreaming about taking a cross country road trip for that past 5 years (!!!).
But a goal without a plan is just a wish. All I had to do was to start visualizing it ! I created a Pinterest board " Road Trip USA ", and later this year, not only did I travel around Southwest, I drove Seattle-Florida-Seattle !

3 - Visit Mexico

After more than 10 years, I was super excited to get my US citizenship ! The one and the only reason I wanted it - so I could travel !!!

My first "foreign country" was Canada ( or British Columbia, to be exact:))
The next one ? Mexico
Though, I did a lot of touristy things, I had a lot of fun ! And the highlight of my trip was .... -

4 - Try cenote diving

5 - Go Mountain Biking in Utah

Moab, Utah is considered to be the birthplace of mountain biking, and since the first time I saw a picture of a mountain biker on the rim of Canyonlands National Park, I knew I had to be there ! Not only did I visit two of the most beautiful and unique National Parks in US ( Canyonlands and Arches ), I got to go mountain biking on the iconic Slickrock Trail !

6 - Try Tandem BASE jumping in Idaho or Moab

 Honestly, this is one of my dreams I thought I wouldn't cross off my Bucket List in a long time ! :)

A few months before my Southwest road trip, I wrote a short post about tandem BASE jumping...wrote and forgot about it...
It wasn't until I was in Moab that I realized, "oh my God, I'm in Moab, one of the places I wrote about BASE jumping !!! I can totally do it right now !!!"
Long story short, here I am , standing with Mario Richards and his beautiful wife Steph Devis ( my " I want-a-girlfriend-like-this" idol :)) getting ready for my first BASE jump

7 - Try Canyoneering

You have to realize that some dreams/goals/plans take time.

I've been wanting to try canyoneering for a long time, but it wasn't until I was in Utah, that I got to try it. And you know what ? It's true what they say : "Good things come to those who wait". It was an amazing experience !

8 -  Learn how to ride a motorcycle

Just like with canyoneering, it took me two years to reach this goal ! But this year, not only did I learn how to ride a motorcycle, I got my enhanced license, and even bought my first bike !

9 - Grand Canyon: Hike rim-to-rim

Here is another weird thing about goal setting : you have to be flexible with your plans/goals.
Sometimes, what you get is not what you originally planned/hoped for. This is what happened to me when I found myself in Grand Canyon NP.

It was the middle of the summer, the busiest tourist season, and I just visited Canyonlands/Arches NP's ( which, let's agree, are mini versions of GC :)).
Hiking rim-to-rim ( or even going to the bottom of the canyon ) wasn't something I was ready to die for.

Does it count as "goal achieved" ? I don't know... what matters is that I had a great time, and I know I'll be back for more adventures in Grand Canyon ( multi day rafting trip, may be ? )

10 - Camping at Palouse State Park

This "achieved goal" actually reminds me that some of our goals can be plain disappointing. When goals turn into expectations, disappointment often results because real life gets in the way. Sometimes, what you see, is not necessary what you'll get...

But no matter what, a few things I've learned over the past few years :

“Everything you can imagine is real.”  ~ Pablo Picasso
"If you can dream it, you can do it" ~  Walt Disney
"Whatever you ask for in prayer, believe, that you have received it, and it will be yours." -Mark 11:24

Sometimes I wish I Was A Ski Bum

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For the past 4 years I've been reading and following many people who decided to dedicate their lives to pursue their dreams. Their stories are a true inspiration for me. Every time I read or watch such a story, I wish I could find that courage, passion, and dedication in me.

 Recently, I came across a beautiful video about a group of friends traveling in tiny RV-style hand built home visiting the great ski areas across North America. They took the house all over the western United States and into Canada, over 9000 miles. Below is an amazing video that shows how the project started and how the timy house was built.

Last year, on my Bucket List I added " Buy a trailer and live for at least 2 months as a "digital nomad". This video inspired me to start a new category "Trailer/Campers/Simple Living" where I will post stories and pictures of people who decided to challenge norms, do what they love in the outdoors, and enjoy life !

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Another Ordinary Day...

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Another ordinary day... a few more and you'll have an ordinary life

As a famous German writer Wolfgang von Goethe once said-  "A man can stand almost anything except a succession of ordinary days."

I'm pretty sure I can stand a succession  of ordinary days and have an ordinary life... as long as my life is not filled with stress, anxiety, worry, things I hate to do, and people I can't stand to be around ...

People have different views on what makes one's life ordinary and other extraordinary.
But it's not about making your life extraordinary, it's about making YOURSELF EXTRAORDINARY.

If you think of yourself as just another ordinary person, then remember that every great person in history and living was once considered to be ordinary as well just like you. They shifted from being ordinary people into extraordinary ones by doing things that were different and against the comfort of conformity and helpless acceptance.

 And as Jimmy Johnson once said :

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Driving Through Death Valley And Mojave

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After visiting Grand Canyon NP, I headed towards California.
#1 attraction on my "Bucket List Of Things To See" - Death Valley National Park.

This is the "weirdest" National Park I've ever visited. There is no "official park entrance". Basically, Death Valley National Park is HWY 190 that runs through the park ( Death Valley got its National Park status only in 1994. The earlier legal status of Death Valley as a National Monument rather than a National Park was largely a political consideration ).

What does it mean to you ? No "official entrance fee" !!!

The Furnace Creek Visitor Center is the major Park Service interpretive effort in Death Valley. When I asked a ranger for a map, his first question was if I'd paid the park fee. So, if you don't care about the map, no need to pay !

TIP: Once again, don't be lazy and stupid ! Do your research before the trip ! If you just GOOGLE "points of interest death valley", you will find more helpful and interesting information than any ranger can provide !

My first point of interest was Zabriskie Point -

Zabriskie Point is an elevated overlook of a colorful, undulating landscape of gullies and mud hills at the edge of the Black Mountains, just a few miles east of Death Valley - from the viewpoint, the flat salt plains on the valley floor are visible in the distance
It's right be the HWY, just a short ( 5 min) hike. Snap a picture, and off you go...

TIP : If you REALLY want, make an extra effort to drive to Badwater Basin, the lowest place in North America and one of the lowest places in the world at 282 feet below sea level. Other than taking a picture by the sign, you really won't see much ( since I visited the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah, I didn't want to waste my time just for that ).

Next was the Furnace Creek Resort. It was also weird. In the middle of nowhere, a resort !

Targeting wealthy visitors, they set out to create a luxurious oasis, hoping it would become as much of a must-see attraction as Yellowstone or the Grand Canyon.
Long story short, it didn't become a "must-see attraction". It hardly deserves spending 10-15 minutes, walking around the Borax Museum:
The Borax Museum at the Ranch at Furnace Creek provides the history of the property and key figures involved in the history of Death Valley and the resort. It offers a pictorial history and showcases artifacts from the past such as antique stagecoaches, mining tools and a railroad steam locomotive. It is the oldest structure in Death Valley.
TIP: Are you an avid golfer ? The resort features the world's lowest golf course (18 holes at 214 feet below sea level).

But my BIGGEST DREAM was to see SAND DUNES !

For me, "desert" has always been associated with sand dunes. Unfortunate, only less than one percent of Death Valley is covered with dunes.
Mesquite Flat Dunes are the best known and easiest to visit in the national park. From the parking lot, it's an easy hike to the dunes, but if you want to wonder a bit further, it'll become a challenge. Although the highest dune rises only about 100 feet, hiking in the middle of the summer is no "walk in the park".

Which brings me to my last TIP : when is the best time to visit Death Vally ?


Scuba Diving: Dos Ojos Cenote The Yucatan Peninsula

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... Chac-Mool cenote diving during my trip to Cancun, Mexico was THE MOST EXCITING EXPERIENCE OF MY LIFE !

Though before that, I had done 2 more tropical dives ( Underwater Museum and a one tank reef dive near Playa del Carmen ), cenote diving was the experience to remember for the rest of my life !
It's one of those things when "you've got to be there" :)

 If you're a certified diver, definitely put Cenote Diving on your Bucket List !

Meanwhile, here is a short video to give you a general idea of what to expect...( but trust me, even the best edited video will not substitute the real life experience )

Photo/Video credit Expert Vagbond

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Driving Through Monument Valley, Utah/Arizona

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Monument Valley provides perhaps the most enduring and definitive images of the American West. The isolated red mesas and buttes surrounded by empty, sandy desert have been filmed and photographed countless times over the years for movies, adverts and holiday brochures. Because of this, the area may seem quite familiar, even on a first visit, but it is soon evident that the natural colors really are as bright and deep as those in all the pictures. The valley is not a valley in the conventional sense, but rather a wide flat, sometimes desolate landscape, interrupted by the crumbling formations rising hundreds of feet into the air, the last remnants of the sandstone layers that once covered the entire region.

There is only one main road through Monument Valley, US 163, which links Kayenta, AZ with US 191 in Utah. The stretch approaching the AZ/UT border from the north gives the most famous image of the valley, and possibly of the whole Southwest - a long straight empty road leads across flat desert towards the 1,000 foot high stark red cliffs on the horizon, curving away just in front.

The Valley Drive passes 11 numbered stops at the most scenic places, and a typical journey around the loop takes at least 2 hours. Tourists are not allowed to hike away from the road closer towards any of the formations, but even so the trip is very enjoyable.

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Surfing, Alaskan Style

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I wrote before about incredible surfing and stand up paddleboarding opportunities in Alaska. Recently, I came across a great photo site by Scott Dickerson.

Scott, raised in Alaska, has been pioneering the waterman lifestyle in the last frontier for 15 years. As a photographer, sup distributor/dealer and surf charter boat captain, he enjoys sharing the breathtaking scenery of Alaska with the world, especially from a standup perspective.

Please, check out his site, even if you're not a surfer, you'll find his pictures amazing and breathtaking !

Visiting Alaska is already on my Bucket List, and along with things like sea kayaking among icebergs, climbing Denali, heli-skiing, I'm going to add "Surfing/SUPing".

You might also like :

Surfing and SUPing In Alaska

Extreme Glacier Surfing In Alaska Video

First Russian To Tandem Base Jump From A Cliff !

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The Guinness Book of World Records, here I come !

It doesn't always have to be a world record. Even an amazing "first" can be remembered in the GWR book.

During my recent road trip around Southwest, I had an amazing opportunity to try tandem BASE jumping in Moab, Utah.

Withing the past 3 years, there have been many things that I'd done for the first time. But it never really felt like it was such a big deal. Before me, there have been tons of people who've done skydiving, kayaking, paragliding, surfing, scuba diving and etc. for the first time.

But personally, I don't know many people who've done tandem BASE jumping off a cliff !!!

And after my jump,I realized that I'm one of few who can proudly say: " I did it !"

The company, Moab B.A.S.E. Adventures, has taken dozens of people from around the world on this exciting journey. And I just happened to be the first Russian to experience the extreme adventure of cliff B.A.S.E. jumping !

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