The Great Escape

Rediscovering life in Palawan Philippines

Archive for the tag “announcements”

SOLD!….and so the countdown begins



The biggest adventure you can ever take is to live the life of your dreams. ~ Oprah Winfrey


After months of being in limbo purgatory we sold our house. Now, the countdown begins. Soon our dream of living a ‘simple’ life in Coron Palawan will be real.

We had a five-year plan and it hasn’t been easy. There’s been doubts and struggles but we’ve also learned lots in the process.

Never stop dreaming.
Our dream is not to live in Palawan. Our dream is to change our lifestyle. Coron, Palawan just happens to be where we think we can best do this. We’ve had setbacks and failures and I’m sure we’ll have more but we won’t let it stop us from following our dream.

Don’t let unsupportive people drag you down.
Most of our family and friends are supportive of our plans but there have been some surprises. A few closest to us can’t seem to wrap their heads around why we want to trade in our comfortable western lifestyle for a third world adventure. We all have our own definition of success and happiness and I guess we don’t conform to conventional ideas. I won’t deny – it did sting us a little – but we refuse to let others dictate our path.

Don’t be afraid of uncertainty.
We know how the system works in Canada. It’s organized and predictable. When we started out we knew nothing about Coron except that it was an amazing place to holiday. Fear of the unknown has stopped many dreams. We had a lot of uncertainty in the beginning but rather than give up on the idea of living there we began to chip away at our fears. We started to talk to lots of different people – expats, locals, friends, and family – and we listened intently. We did a lot of research and treated every visit as a learning experience. There will always be uncertainty but now that we have a better understanding of the processes and cultural practices we feel more confident moving forward.

Be flexible to change.
As much as we think we can control our life, the universe has different ideas. At first we wanted to start a small resort or B&B but after much research and reflection we weren’t sure if that would be the right path for us. By that time we really wanted to live in Coron so rather than abandon the idea we decided to think about other ways to achieve our goal.

You never know where your journey will take you. Who would have ever guessed we would become organic farmers on a tropical island paradise in the South China Sea.

Happiness is Only Real When Shared 5

Very Inspiring Blogger Award

What more can I say? Another blogger has recognized this blog and I couldn’t be more grateful.  Read more…

Happiness is Only Real When Shared 3 & 4

Now, I am officially overwhelmed! This is the third month this blog’s been nominated and twice at that!  Read more…

Happiness is Only Real When Shared 2

Here we go again! I’ve been blessed with another nomination! This time by the CanadianTravelBugs. Read more…

Happiness is Only Real When Shared

July 25, 2012

Very Inspiring Blogger Award

What more can I say? Another blogger has recognized this blog and I couldn’t be more grateful.

While I appreciate the recognition I appreciate what it takes for every single blogger to post their ideas and thoughts ‘online’ for the world to see. It takes courage to expose yourself to possible criticism and scrutiny. But with that aspect is also the possibility to make someone think, laugh, wonder or feel with your words or pictures. This makes blogging truly fulfilling.

So I thank Ioanna Aggelidaki of  ‘life portoFolio‘ for taking the time to nominate me for this award and make me think why I do what I do. If you’d like to know a little about me just scroll down to the bottom to the ‘Versatile Blogger Award.’

Here’s a few inspiring sites to check out:

🙂  🙂  🙂  🙂  🙂  🙂

June 9, 2012 / June 19, 2012

Beautiful Blogger Award

Now I am officially overwhelmed!

This is the third month this blog’s been nominated and twice at that! I’ve been bitten by the CanadianTravelBugs again. They’ve passed on the “Beautiful Blogger Award” for my blog ‘The Great Escape.’ My second nomination is for “The Versatile Blogger Award” and comes from pinay e-motion. Again, I am extremely grateful.

I know everyone works hard and puts time into their blog. If there’s anything I learned from my very early days as an artist it’s that in order to grow we need to keep our mind open to different perspectives. Sometimes I get stuck on what to write about and I get too focused on a point of view. Sometimes I don’t know what to write and the words just don’t come. That’s when writing just isn’t fun.

Sometimes we need a little change of pace from the regular stuff we’ve been writing so I’ve been expanding my mind at these ‘alternative thinking’ blogs.

🙂  🙂  🙂  🙂  🙂  🙂

May 25, 2012

Kreativ Blogger Award

Here we go again! I’ve been blessed with another nomination. This time by the CanadianTravelBugs. They’ve passed on the Kreativ Blogger Award to my blog ‘The Great Escape.’ Again I am so grateful and thank them and everyone else for exploring this blog.

Here’s a few more blogs that I have recently discovered.

🙂  🙂  🙂  🙂  🙂  🙂

April 25, 2012

Versatile Blogger Award

I’ve blogged for two months now and I have to say the experience has turned out to be much more fulfilling than I thought it would ever be. When I got my first ‘like’ I felt elated. When I got my first comment I was ecstatic. The greatest satisfaction came when Jennifer Avventura of “My Sardinian Life” nominated my blog for a “Versitile Blogger” award. I thought to myself, “Wow, people are reading my blog and getting something out of it.”

There’s a movie (directed by Sean Penn) and a book called “Into the Wild.” It’s inspired by a true story about a top student, Christopher McCandles, who abandons his possessions and hitchhikes to Alaska to live in the wilderness.
During his path of self-discovery Christopher encounters different characters who influence and shape his life. Eventually his lone journey ends with the tragic realization that “Happiness is only real when shared.” It’s one of my favourite quotes from the movie.

I think the blogging community is about sharing and being inspired through photos, stories and ideas.  It provides a way for us to experience life through other people’s eyes and can sometimes give us a different perspective on things. I’m new to the blogging world so I haven’t had a chance to discover that many blogs but here’s some that I’m enjoying:

Here’s a few things about me I’d like to share.

  • I’m a 40-something Canadian adventurer at heart who loves culture, learning and nature.
  • In a small town of India I was persuaded to try a “bang” lassi (a yogurt drink spiked with marijuana) by this tiny Nepalese waiter. When I said I didn’t feel any effect the waiter came back and brought me a lassi that was totally green. Not a good sign. Next day – hangover.
  • My shyness if often mistaken as aloofness.
  • My closest “near death” experience happened on a white water rafting trip in Ottawa, Ontario. I got tossed out and swept under the raft on the last set of rapids. My life jacket made me buoyant and pushed me up against the underside of the raft, sticking me like a magnet under water. I waited rescue and when that didn’t happen my survival instinct kicked in. I somehow managed to break free. The whole event unravelled as if in slow motion.
  • I enjoy watching the Discovery Channel, Oasis, National Geographic Channel and the Food Network.
  • My worst drunken experience occurred on a trek in the Annapurna region of the Himalayas at an altitude of over 3,000 meters. The Nepalese porters were indulging in a game of cards and drinking rum. I thought it would be fun to join in. The next thing I remember is waking up in a freezing sleeping bag with zero recollection of the previous day. Never drink alcohol at a high elevation. Lesson learned.
  • I’m a food lover and I married a chef. Good combination, right? Well, chefs don’t like to cook after work or on their days off. They rather take-out a burger or pizza.

I am really grateful I’m part of the blogging community. I look forward to sharing my experiences and finding out more about my fellow bloggers.

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