P1010910I started life with big ambitions. I wanted to be an astronaut. I wouldn’t let anyone tell me I couldn’t do it. Somehow I knew that the things that stop you from being an astronaut aren’t in effect when you are 13. I still think that’s right. Anyway, I didn’t become an astronaut, but I did learn to fly and that has shaped much of my life since then.

My career has nothing to do with flying, which is unfortunate. But there are parts of my job that I really like and those parts are based on the challenge of problem-solving, which I love. I think that side of me has also contributed to my great passions in life. And that is paragliding, cooking and snowboarding – in that order. I’ve been practicing all these things for the most of the last 10 years and finally I can look back and see that the practice has made a big difference.

I used to be a very average cook. Now I prefer my cooking to take-away and love the fact that my baking makes someone else happy – even if its just for the few minutes it took them to consume the item.

I remember when I was first licenced to paraglide I met a “competition” pilot and attempted to fly with them in South Africa. I was astounded at how far this guy could fly when I  was struggling to stay up and land further afield than the designated landing field. And now I can fly 70km and occasionally reach goal in a competition! Now I am a comp pilot!!! How did that happen?? Oh, yeah – that would be the last 5 years of practice perhaps.

I used to be a terrible snowboarder. I remember sitting at the base of the t-bar at Perisher one year, in tears, because I had fallen off the fricking t-bar 3 times in a row and it looked like I was going to be spending the night there if I couldn’t use the damned thing. And then I spent a season working for almost nothing in Whistler, Canada, snowboarding several times a week. What do you know – it all came together. And now I board like I’ve been doing it since I was yay-high. Snow-boarding didn’t come naturally to me, but practice has made it an absolute pleasure now.

So I thought I would put together a blog of these passions, and maybe inspire others to have a go. Because practice does pay off.


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