Hi everyone .. I’ve had a lot go on medically over the past 5 months and thought I’d share an update. Yes, I have cancer and am undergoing chemotherapy. I will complete this regimen and hopefully will never have to endure this again!
And, on Jan 31, I had a stroke. It almost killed me but I’m still here and remember the quote, “you quit fighting AFTER you’re dead.” That pretty much says it all. But, if that’s not enough, just remember Churchill’s “when you’re going through hell, keep going!” My condition on that Monday was correctly identified before I got to the ER and I was coded quickly and correctly. I got the clot buster drugs in time. It was a crazy experience and very hard for me to identify while caught up inside it. I was at work, and it happened after a sneeze (of all things).
I hope that I have a great 23 years just like after my 1998 colectomy, but I am older and new things abound. I will just do me and see what happens. At the moment, I am good, I have regained a lot of the weight lost and am almost back to 100%. My balance is still not perfect but it is getting better quickly.
Yes. I am so incredibly fortunate. Right now, as the country continues to examine itself in the most difficult way, I have a job that I love (especially the co-workers), my children are healthy and doing well in school, and I have my health. I’ve had some medical issues this summer – and I’m not going to elaborate on them – but I have a fantastic doctor (and team) who have made this process as easy as it can be.
I have nothing but gratitude for all of this and more.
That said, I am a student of constant improvement, and there is a lot I need to improve on .. like writing on my blog, for sure. But, in case you didn’t notice, I regularly add more photos of waterfalls. The best part of it all is that my photos are improving due to the regular study of techniques, continued study of available options on my camera(s), and practice!
Like, the latest photo from last weekend. Is this the most beautiful waterfall I’ve visited? No. But, was the outing special? Very much so. It was the first outing I’ve made in a couple months. Now that I can get out and hike again, I’ll be headed back out on weekends and you’ll find a lot more photos added to the site.
I am especially proud, though, of completing Kevin Adam’s 100 Waterfall Challenge this summer. I also want to complete the Carolina Mountain Club Waterfall Challenge (I’m at 75 of 100 right now) and, last, I am already working on Mr. Adam’s 250 Waterfall Challenge. The best part of challenges like this is that I have to visit waterfalls and areas that I wouldn’t have otherwise visited. In many cases it’s been reacquainting myself with western NC. And, in every case, I have really enjoyed getting to know not only the waterfall, but also the region.
I would love to increase my interaction with you, so, if anyone has a question for me, please ask.
I have had a blast this summer getting outdoors, hiking, and taking photographs. I’ve taken some good shots, and some that capture the moment but don’t show it in the best light (pun intended). You can see many of the waterfall shots on its page (click HERE to go there).
I plan on continuing this each weekend throughout autumn and into winter. I hope that my timing proves good and that I get some exceptional shots.
For the few of you who actually read this, thank you. Here is one of my more recent photos.
The roughly one mile hike to Little Bearwallow Falls is not difficult, but the uphill can be strenuous. If you keep going the additional two miles to Wildcat Rock know that it IS strenuous. Immediately when you set out from the Wildcat Rock Trailhead in Gerton, NC, you encounter an apple orchard.
Then, you enter the woods on a clearly marked trail and cross a stream.
Next, get ready for some uphill hiking. But, the reward is the rock wall (you’ll see the waterfall is thin with little water on the day I was there, but the wall itself is great for both rock and ice climbing).
Yet again I’ve taken my annual trip to Portland for the World Domination Summit. And, yet again it was a fantastic trip. This time, in addition to WDS activities, I took the time to hike to Ramona Falls on Mt. Hood. And, for one of my academies, I participated in a photowalk around downtown Portland. On Sunday night, instead of going to the closing party, I went to go see Carlos Santana play (with the Doobie Bros opening). Yeah .. you can imagine just how good this week was for me. I am recharged.
There are a lot of things I learned that I will pursue to advance both business and personal goals. And THAT is the only the second best benefit of WDS for me. The best is reconnecting with my friends and making new friends whose ideas make me think and offer me hope for my personal and professional tomorrows. If you have any questions about either the conference and/or its content, please email me!
Here are some images from the hike, and I have to say that it was one of the most scenic I have ever been on. These images didn’t capture the real color that jumped out at you from everywhere, in particular the manifold variations of yellow and green are still hard to describe.
The photowalk was also amazing. I found I was looking more at lines and colors than people. Here are some of the results:
Last, the concert .. wow! Great music played by classic musicians.