Tag Archives: adventures




This summer has been all about earning money driving international visitors all over the lower South Island of New Zealand, which has meant that I haven’t had much time for my own outdoors adventuring.  I’ve been working on self development adventures instead.  Recently three of us had a day trip up Roy’s Peak.  It was sooooo good to get out in the hills for a change.  As you can see in the photo above the day was glorious and there was hardly a breath of wind – quite unexpected for this time of year.  In case you are wondering that’s me on the left in my snazzy Adventures Before Dementia t shirt with my good friend John beside me.

The point of all this is that it’s not about three people climbing a peak.  Two of them strolled up it – yes you John and Lizzie.  But one of them didn’t – no surprises who that was.  Yes moi, me, yours truly.  I admit it here now and in public .  I struggled going up that goddamn hill.  I huffed and puffed and plodded.  I’ve always been ashamed of the fact that I’ve struggled whenever I’ve climbed anything of any consequence.  I’ve been up a few peaks by this stage in my life and if there’s is someone sweating and puffing and going reallllly slowly, chances are that it will be me.  It’s literally one foot in front of another, plodding.  So embarrassing.  BUT dammit I do it.  I get there eventually and nothing but nothing can take that achievement away.

So isn’t this a metaphor for our lives?  Why are we so ashamed when we’re making a good honest effort?  We may not be as fast as others or as able, or skilled, or agile, or clever, or whatever, but with determination we will get there in the end.  We need to embrace our struggles, for these become our adventures, these are what make us and what ultimately become our greatest triumphs.  In the heart of every difficulty there  lies the seed of its solution.  Your bump in the road may be someone else’s Mt Everest.  So don’t laugh next time you see someone struggling with ANYTHING – give them a high five instead.  They’re going at their own pace but at least they’re out there trying .  At least they are having adventures and #doingwhattheycan’t.

Inspiration for this post came in part from a Casey Neistat video – watch it here.  Don’t let anything stop you, be the man or woman in the arena, face marred by blood and dust, striving valiantly.   Do what you can’t, have the adventure, live the dream, be the person on the iceberg (you need to watch the video to get that!)

And if you see me sweating up a hill one day, stop and say hi – I could probably use the rest!









Why Adventures?

adventures, explore, freedom

This blog is called Adventures Before Dementia because I aim to fit in as many as humanly possible before I shuffle off this mortal coil.  Hopefully by having an excess of Adventures the Dementia part of the title will never happen or at least be as minimal as possible!   I aim to have all kinds of adventures and not just travel ones, even if they are my most favourite kind.   Adventures of the mind, the heart, the soul, adventures of the spirit and last but by no means least, creative adventures.

Why?  Just because.  Just because everybody needs Adventures, proper ones spelt with a capital letter.  Serious Adventures.  We need them in order to grow as individuals.  We need them to make our life interesting, to give us something to look forward to and something to remember in the dark days of winter, we need them to rise above the humdrum, the run of the mill.  For in adventuring we find freedom……

May this be of use to you


I’m A Warrior – What’s Your Archetype?

warrior, military strong goals woman

Can a 55 year old woman with two kids and a husband be a warrior?  Hell yeah.

As much as anything being a warrior is an archetype, a mindset, an attitude to life.

I’ve had a few challenges lately.  I think the Universe has been trying to tell me something about my usual mild mannered ways.  I’m the typical Taurean bull – quiet and peaceful and sucks it up for ages until I’ve had enough and then there’s an explosion that you really don’t want to be around for.   There’s been a number of individuals that I’ve come across recently who have been down right obnoxious and bullying, and I’ve caught the sharp end of their temper.  One of them even chased me into a bar to inform me what a horrible person I was.  My daughter nearly peed herself laughing when I told her about it.  As she put it “Mum was in a bar fight!” Thanks babes.  I’ve a feeling that I really need to grow up and gain a backbone or I’ll suffer this crap for the rest of my life, which is not an appealing prospect.

I’ve always loved hard stuff.  I  don’t mind physical or for that matter mental hardship and I relish a challenge.  So from now on I’m taking on my warrior archetype, until it is no longer useful and there is a tiny ninja turtle figure on my windowsill to remind me to harden up.

So what is an archetype?  According to Dictionary.com they are:

An original model after which other similar things are patterned. In the psychology of Carl Jung, archetypes are the images, patterns, and symbols that rise out of the collective unconscious and appear in dreams, mythology, and fairy tales.

So the Warrior archetype would be a kind of universal symbol of a warrior  of which most of us would agree on the qualities personified.  A warrior should exhibit for example :

  • Strength (both inner and outer)
  • Courage
  • Physical fitness
  • Control
  • Patience
  • Leadership
  • Ability to work alone
  • On a quest
  • Confidence
  • Takes no crap
  • Slightly scary……

Where I am going with this post, is that I believe that at certain points  we need to take on the mantle of another personality to enable us to get on with our lives.  At the moment I really need to be a Warrior, but I could see that perhaps later in life I could take on the mantle of a Sage or a Poet or a Mystic to fulfill my purpose.

Now every morning I meditate on what it is to be a Warrior and feel my inner strength and courage.  Please don’t let it take a “bar fight” for you to discover yours!

May this be of use to you






On Freedom

biker-407123_1920I’ve written a lot about goals.

On working hard on them and reviewing daily.

On some I’m doing really well and on others it’s about having faith and making tiny steps.

Its also about tracking goals daily so that my methods can be adjusted.

But what it’s really about is freedom.

Freedom to live my life the way I want to.  Freedom to not be dictated to:  by employers, by society, by family, by “shoulds.”   Freedom to look after my family and friends.  Freedom to have adventures.  Freedom to be the real me.

At 55 I’m finally ready to grow up.  I’m designing my life the way I want it to be, not by societal norms.  I’ve done all the things I “should” do – get married, have children, buy a house, have a career.  Some of these things have been a success in anyone’s eyes – I have a long and happy marriage, I have two kids whom I adore, plus a bunch of awesome friends who I regard as family, and I have a house in an extremely desirable area.   I’ve paid my dues and now it’s my turn to do what the hell ever I want.  Freedom to choose

I desperately need another big adventure.

Part of my big adventure is working on my hard on my goals – adventures of the mind.

But I need physical adventures too.


Freedom to walk off with my backpack and keep going and to stop when I feel like it.  Freedom to ride my motorbike into the sunset.  Freedom to sit at Parisian cafes drinking espressos and (shock horror) foie gras and watching the world go by.  Freedom to snorkel off a sandy tropical beach as the palm trees wave languidly in the breeze.  Freedom to laugh and haggle in Asian markets.  Freedom to chat to fellow travellers at airports.  Freedom to earn my own income that’s contingent only on myself, not subject to the whims of an employer.

The question is:  what’s the next big adventure going to be?




Flip It!

upsidedown flipit plane

Flip it! has become my motto lately.  If something’s not working, what do I do?  I flip it.  I do the opposite and see if that is any more successful.

Sometimes we have to press reboot on our ideas.  I know at 55, it’s easy to get in a bit of a rut about what works and what doesn’t in life.   However, I’m finding that sometimes what has always works no longer serves in my new rebuilt existence.  Pardon if that sounds like the Terminator, but you know what I mean.  What has always worked for me in many areas, no longer does so, and it’s time for a change.

This blog is not called Adventures Before Dementia for nothing.  I’ve gone from a quiet(ish) – I was never that great about being quiet in a library, librarian existence to having to find a new purpose and meaning in life, and a new way to earn an income.  I’ve gone from the orderly and conventional to a bit of the crazy.  In other words I’ve flipped it – some would say in more ways than one……It’s time to flip my life on its head and have a bunch more adventures.  Lately, I’ve been focused on earning an income (not always successfully) but I’m feeling like I need a little bit more of the crazy (I’ll keep you posted) Anyone like to join me?

May this be of use to you.




I’ve been wondering how to continue this blog now I’m home.  How relevant is Adventures Before Dementia now that I am back to everyday life?  Life between travels.  And I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s really relevant, for me anyway.  I figure that if I find meaning in this thinking someone else will also.  I’ve been doing a bit of reflecting lately and I’ve realised that for me life has always been about exploring.  Not necessarily physically exploring (although I’ve done a bit of that in my time) but exploring possibilities, boundaries (oh yeah) and exploring my limits – physically, mentally, spiritually, intellectually.  I love to be learning, doing new stuff and seeing how far I can take it.  To me an integral part of having adventures is exploring.  Hindsight being what it is, I look back and think I’d make some very different choices if I knew then what I know now, but the thread that runs through it all, is that whatever life dished up I looked for the opportunities to explore and grow.

I’m at a stage of my life now where the kids are living their own lives and need very little direct input, the mortgage is under control and I have the luxury of time, energy and experience on my side.  It’s my time to make my mark on the world – until now I’ve focused on marriage, children and career – those things we “should” do as a part of society.  Marriage and children for me have been a raging success, if not always easy!  But career wise I have a load of unfulfilled potential, and at 55 I’m not ready to quietly potter on until retirement – whatever that is.

I believe that there are a lot of people in my situation, post children, post career for whatever reason, with a lot to contribute still, but perhaps undervalued by the mainstream employment market.

So call me a late bloomer, whatever, but this is my time to shine, my time to leave a legacy, my time to push to my absolute limits in every sense. I don’t know how I’m going to do it exactly but I know I will.  What I do know is that I want to create good in the world, encourage more loving kindness, more connectedness and more care for our beautiful planet.  What I do know is that I want to live by these values.  What I do know is that I want to build something good, to push my entrepreneurial limits  and create my own income rather than relying on someone else.  And I will.

So here’s to the process, to enjoying the journey and to adventures!  #explore








Bargaining in Morocco

I’d long ago read of the Arab love of bargaining.  As a New Zealander this is not something I’d had much experience of at all.   It is not in our culture to bargain over price.  However when I look back on some of my old employment agreements I think that I  needed a crash course in it!  There’s plenty of well documented studies about how women workers are not paid as much as men to do the same job.  A good course in bargaining might just help rectify the situation.
So,  the inevitable happens and we are shown some beautiful carpets at a place called Telouat.   And of course we can’t resist.  And I find myself bargaining with one if the masters of the game.  This was not something I had ever envisioned myself doing!! Himself conveniently disappeared and was deep in conversation with Mustafa our driver for the day.   Helpful that.  The bargaining process was the most leisurely and relaxed I’ve ever been involved in and I didn’t once feel harassed or bullied to buy.  We came eventually to a price that was mutually agreeable.  Apparently I bargain like a Berber woman so I’ll take that as a compliment.  This was all completely unlike the experiences I’d previously had in Marrakesh souks and some Asian markets.  I finally learned the lesson.  Relax.  And don’t do business with jerks. I don’t at home so why change when overseas. And if everyone is happy the price is a good one regardless.  And don’t haggle to the last cent it just looks cheap.  It IS cheap.  Let’s face it to most of the locals you’re a millionaire just by being in their country and out of yours.