Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Spring Break

Last Saturday I attended a District meeting in Columbia, feeling unprepared because I did not visit any clubs except my own which is not doing much since I attend the meetings anyway. Nevertheless, half the battle is showing up, in that respect I have done well considering the performance of the other area governors who are often absent. I did manage to write an email last Friday where 1 club president out of 3 responded, but only because our division governor was a member of his club. But I think I achieved a passing grade (barely), more for some effort than achievement since the other 3 clubs under my jurisdiction are strong clubs who do well despite the meager efforts of its governor. All in all, my record would show that I attended district meetings, did my reports, and completed at least 1 club visit, participated and organized speech contests, attended conferences and club officer training sessions. In the remaining months of my term, I hope to do more club visits and reports before I step down. At least I will try to orient my replacement by showing him or her the ropes. I actually enjoyed my time as governor despite my shortcomings, where I learned my limitations and priorities.

After the meeting, we ate at a Japanese Mexican restaurant, enjoying the hipness, especially the seemingly contradictory cuisine of sushi, sashimi, tortillas, bento box, quesadillas, burritos and miso soup amidst an interesting interior with art objects that seem to depict American Indian culture, exhibited in a bright red wall along one side of the restaurant. I used to enjoy going to interesting places like this, where one’s imagination is piqued because of the creative mix of different or even contradictory styles. But I found myself bored and unimpressed, thinking that this place would appeal to a younger crowd. An interesting television show did piqued my interest: “Top of The Lake” a detective show in New Zealand with Holly Hunter in a cameo role, created by Jane Campion, with the breathtaking landscape, a plot about women victims including the female detective heroine. The atmosphere was distinctive, including the culture and subject; I especially liked the sub plot that featured Hunter as a sort of guru for abused women. I completed the series on Saturday and the effect was having a new life view which is the impact of great art. I also liked ‘Nebraska’ and ‘American Hustle’ which I also watched in the weekend.

On Sunday, I brought my other son back to college, traveling to Clemson and looking for a place to eat in Seneca and the surrounding suburbs of the university town, finally circling back amidst Oconee lake and finding a smoke house near the soccer stadium, walking distance from the campus green. But the smoked meats were not good and the ribs were a disappointment although the fried oysters and okra was not entirely bad. It was an interesting place compared with the other alternatives, which featured uninspired fare for college students, way below my bon vivant expectations. Hence, my weekend was spent traveling, eating and attending meetings, watching movies and series like ‘The Pacific’ by HBO, produced by Tom Hanks, about the war in the Pacific although I was disappointed because it did not feature the liberation of the Philippines. But it was another lost weekend as I had no time to further my goals of writing, starting an Internet business or further studies in investments via options and bonds. But the past five years were good as I achieved incremental progress, slowly increasing my knowledge and skills one small step at a time.

For instance, I achieved progress in the investment area with rental property, ROTH IRA and US stocks, taking advantage of the market recovery. The next step is to invest in options and bonds and create an LLC. In the writing area, I took short courses in creative writing and continued my exercises via blogging, starting short stories and reading more. The next step is to complete a book, not just creative fiction but non-fiction like a food blog. With regards to the Internet, I have about 7 years of experience maintaining blogs, learning Twitter, YouTube and Google+. The next step is to use this knowledge, to start monetizing my sites with an Internet business. I am reading ‘Get Rich Click’ and watched some videos on internet marketing and I need to learn about Google Ad sense and affiliate marketing. A strategy is forming in my mind, where I can use my experience to make the next jump. Sometimes one feels time is running out, with work place changes and paranoia plus the coming graduation of my sons; one need to start something soon. The Internet is the new gold rush where dreams can come true as some people say; the key is knowledge and the old virtue of perseverance.

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