Post has attachment
Our New Home: Tiny Home Philosophy

On Feb 28th, my spouse and I successfully closed on our little beach house, which is to be our home starting March 29th.    The home is quite small, built in the 1950s as a summer residence along gorgeous Shirley Beach in Boston Harbor.     In the first picture here, our house would be located on the lower right hand corner.  

We're located in the walkable village of Winthrop and have subway access direct to Boston in less than four minutes, so we can retain our car-free lifestyle.   

This partially explains why I haven't been online as much as before!
5 Photos - View album

Post has attachment
"Let's make something together" / The Lost Language of Cranes

This one is dedicated to +Sylvie Sullivan  , who is wonderful & crazy enough to post photos of a yard of cranes, that to me looks like a herd of giraffes (or, is it, +Mee Ming Wong  & +Rajini Rao a "gaggle" of giraffes?) here:

Here is also to the French genius for artistry, formalism and making as many things as possible, at all costs, beautiful.

Lyon's fabulous Festival of Lights ("Fête des lumières") 
(Official website:

The Lost Language of Cranes:
Nomad is in Lyon!

Post has attachment

"8 hours a day, 5 days a week, almost 52 weeks a year,

He sits and listens to those in need trying not to tear.

12 years have past, the time has gone, and the gray is starting to show,

He tries his hardest to help these people whilst not getting him too low.

He counsels the sick, the unlucky, and the ones troubled by the unknown,

If this damn thing rings one more time out the window goes the F&%&*N phone!"

Hope this doesn't offend anyone.  If you didn't know I am a counselor in the mental health field.  I truly enjoy helping others but if you have ever worked in social work you understand the stress, pressure, and toll it can take on yourself.  BURN OUT as they call it.  Even though I enjoy what I do to an extent I am pursuing other options and areas of my interest.  This photo is actually me on the phone with one of my coworkers who kept calling asking ridiculous questions. 

p.s. there should be a topic area called >work and play.

Post has attachment
I am a citizen of the world and my home is my planet. I think I will be right here!
Thanks +nomad dimitri for inviting me!
I'd like to greet all of you with this photo: the world's largest gingerbread house. It's in Texas but it could be everywhere, right?
What do you think about? is it the home of your dreams?
More details here!

A Hugely Successful HIRL (Hangout In Real Life)
Philadelphia, PA December 6-8th, 2013

We've just arrived home from our three day trip to Philly to visit two friends whom we've known just virtually here on GooglePlus.  These two guys, Anthony and Ben, were among the first to be added to my circle when I first joined.   They are the same age, live in the same city, and are connected on G+ and communicate constantly, and yet still haven't met each other.     

It is a little weird meeting someone face to face after you've had a long, raucous, tawdry, fractious, interaction with them solely through a keyboard and a stream of sputtering electrons.   Seeing their familiar faces two feet away, you know them but you don't know them.  The first meeting is awkward - do you hug?  Do you shake hands?  Just nod and grunt?   

We met up with Ben at our hotel the night we arrived.  He was sitting on a couch in the lobby.   So handsome, self-contained, sweet.  He stood up with a huge grin on his face and put out his hand immediately to offer me a handshake.   He'd waited so long for us to arrive, but we sat in the lobby chatting - there was a sense of ease right away.  Our long dinner out at an amazing pub (The Dandelion) was the perfect way to let each other's guard down.    When we got back to our hotel hours and hours later, it was hugs all around.  

The next day, we arranged to meet Anthony, a young architecture student with strong opinions on urban living, in ritzy Rittenhouse Square.   He sauntered into the square around 3pm, a fearsome muscular Italian guy with a trimmed black beard and imposing gait.  He saw us and broke out in a childlike smile, even down to the eyes, and took us on a long walking tour of his favorite Philly neighborhood, then for a 7 course Asian tasting dinner at Sampan before dropping us off at the Walnut Street Theater for our play.   Once again, handshakes became warm hugs.  

This is what 'social networking' needs to be - a human connection between people who genuinely share the same values yet may come from wildly different backgrounds or geographic locations.  

Thank you GooglePlus.


Post has attachment
Designing for a Small Space

As I've mentioned before, my partner and I are urban dwellers and live in the Colonial-era city of Boston, Massachusetts which has the oldest housing stock in the country, the slowest build rate, and the lowest replacement rate as well.   We are fortunate to live in an experimental community of newly built, LEEDS-certified, energy generating townhouses along Boston's beautiful waterfront, but this comes at a cost -- our space is extremely limited when compared against typical American homes.

These photos are from a recent revamp of our tiny living room, a multi-purpose space for media, entertainment, gathering, reading, relaxing together.   Our hallmark minimalism carries through here, and as with our kitchen photos, these were not staged, but just taken at random.   The curtains will be hung after they've been returned from the tailor -- they had to be hemmed to avoid touching the A/C unit.

The long sofa doubles as a fold-out queen sized bed for accommodating guests.   Remarkably comfortable after the standard mattress was swapped out for memory foam. 
15 Photos - View album

Post has attachment

4a. Intrepid: Reboot

She couldn’t walk away, something pulled the key back into the lock.

This was not the time to question why. The sound of her boots running back into the house syncopated with her pulsing heart. He is down but not out. She would have to act fast, Ernest Stavro’s men are on their way.

Her years of experience as a war zone military doctor should make this procedure routine. Memories of her past life flooded back.  She had loved her job there, the appeal of the outfits and hours; but it wasn’t enough that she saved hundreds of lives, now she had to clean up a mess that was escalating. Somehow, opening up a dude and removing shrapnel now sounded glamorous.

Getting him to come back for a drink was easy, the conversation and laughter flowed even easier.  In mid laugh, she dropped the poison in his drink; pure calculated instinct. Gliding across the room with his drink, his hand reached for her lower back, pulling her in. His gaze paralyzed her. The situation was no longer under her control. He looked good tonight, he wore his impeccability like he didn’t care.

There he lay, a perfect mix of unconscious smug and smirk, the kind of man that other men envied. That smirk taunted her to smack it and kiss it at the same time. 
His last look was one of unexpected hurt. 

Better move fast, that narcoleptic grey darkens. She must revive him.  Unbuttoning his shirt for an un-necessary assessment was somewhat unethical, but then again so was murder. Emptying stomach contents is an enjoyable if messy procedure. Colonoscopy, gastric lavage, same tube, different end, not a wide margin of error.

For now, she must appear to obey Ernest Stavro. Getting involved with Stavro was unpreventable; a symptom of knowing too much. Stavro had the awkwardness of a hobbledehoy.  Bald and odourless, his brand of evil more than compensated for the pocketknife he wields with the ladies. It is easy to vilify him, but even being vile has its own charm. A cocktail of aberrant splashed with abhorrent.

Colour was returning to his face; eyes gaining consciousness darting around. Another death diverted. But the searching eyes were hard to reconcile. No time for apologetic rhapsodies.

Stavro’s men are pounding the door, it was time to evacuate.

Episode 4 of "The Intrepid" Series is available in five different versions, written by five different writers.  You have just read my version, for the others, click here:

Previously by +nomad dimitri 
3. Intrepid:
2. Intrepid:
1. Intrepid:

Post has attachment
First picture of my new facial hair - still getting used to it but the hair has started to soften. No longer scratchy.   

She pulled the key from the lock...
She held her breath, thinking, deciding, knowing that she hadn't been granted the right to make that decision. Yet her veins were burning with a strange new sense of fairness. Should she? She'd lose everything. Weeks later, looking back on that fatidic day, she still wouldn’t be able to tell which choice she would have made if, at that very moment, a hand had not reached over her mouth and a sharp pain had not shot through her neck.

Just a few hours later, a fuming Ernst Stavro was slamming his fist against his thick mahogany desk. "What do you mean, they both disappeared!!!" A sturdy yet frightened-looking young man stood on the other side of his desk, wondering if repeating the facts a third time would do any good for his fate and that of the three nervous men at his side. Not daring to make eye contact, he stammered something about how they had searched the entire hotel, but his interlocutor had already forgotten his very presence.

Stavro was pacing, livid. But he was not distraught. He couldn’t be. Hadn’t he built this impressive empire from nothing? Couldn’t he instantly summon an army of young men and women who would obey his every whims, out of either respect or fear?

Then why were his hands trembling?

He angrily ordered everyone out of the room. Their steps resonated in the marble floor long after the heavy metal door had shut behind them.

This man had to be eliminated - should have been eliminated. And she, so naive, would have taken all the blame; it was so perfect. But now the thought of his own brother still being alive somewhere, with enough knowledge to destroy him, made the great Ernst Stavro sick to his stomach.

So sick, in fact, that he didn't notice anything missing from his desk...

Silvania slowly opened her eyes. She felt dizzy and weak, but her mind still sensed danger and forced her to focus on her surroundings.

(unfinished! I know where it's going to end, I'm just not sure of the road to get there)


Episode 4 of "The Intrepid" Series is available in five different versions, written by five different writers.  You have just read my version, for the others, click here:

Previously by +nomad dimitri 
3. Intrepid:
2. Intrepid:
1. Intrepid:

4. Intrepid: alternate ending.

She pulled the key from the lock……she couldn’t, she wouldn’t, leave him like this.  Ernst had played his last card when he’d murdered her sister in front of her eyes, in cold blood, just because she’d brought him a latte instead of an espresso.  It was time to take a stand.  She feverishly rifled through her handbag for the antidote to the poison she’d given him, but all she could find were used tissues and empty gum packets.  Why, oh why, had she decided that this bag would go better with her outfit this particular morning rather than the one she usually carried?! 

She heard the elevator doors down the hall slide open.  Hurriedly she ran to the window to search for a means of escape.  Not even a ledge to stand on!  She ran to the man spread-eagled on the floor and tried to drag him to shelter.  His ragged, shallow breathing combined with her panicked gasping as she rolled him underneath the bed. 

She heard a banging on the door.  It was only a matter of seconds before her life would be over. Suddenly, from behind her, the window smashed inwards, and a figure all in black threw himself into the room. She cowered in the corner, terrified by this apparition.  “Captain of the Snow Seals at your service, Madam.  Your torture at the hands of the Incredibly Evil Ernst Blofeld is now over,” he gently told her while pulling out the biggest bazooka she’d ever seen.  His eyes twinkled as he aimed his large weapon at the door and blasted it and the evil-doers to smithereens.  

He then pulled a vial from one of his many pockets and administered to the man lying on the floor. “Let’s leave him to sleep it off shall we?” he murmured in her ear. Taking her arm, he led her out the remains of the door, and into her new life. 

Previously by +nomad dimitri 
3. Intrepid:
2. Intrepid:
1. Intrepid:

Episode 4 of "The Intrepid" Series is available in five different versions, written by five different writers.  You have just read my version, for the others, click here:
Wait while more posts are being loaded