Expiry Date


Every time we open the fridge or take a look in our pantry, we find items that are close to or past their expiry date. Milk, yoghurt, pasta and even sugar laced cereal has an expiry date.


All these items hit their end of life date before we had time to make the most of what they had to offer us. We let the opportunity slip through our fingers and then realise we should have made the most of the item before it hit its time was over.

But, as with all food items we can venture down to the local supermarket and replenish the old expired stock with some fresh items. And then we are able to sit down to a breakfast of milk and cereal. Hopefully Coco Pops.


Even after restocking the pantry and fridge with fresh items, there is one item with an expiry date that we should all be concerned about. Our very own end of life. Once we hit our expiry date, there is no trip to the supermarket that will help us in anyway.

So with that expiry period at the forefront of my mind of late, I’ve realised that even the simplest things in life can be the most enjoyable. From sipping a latte at my favourite coffee shop or taking a hike through the hilly terrain of some local tracks.


We never know what tomorrow brings, so when we we wake up every morning we should take every single opportunity to make the most of our lives.

Spending time with family, friends and loved ones is never going to be a waste of their time or yours. It will make our time before our expiry date so much more pleasurable and bring a smile to our faces.


Now that I have the opportunity to look back, I realise my end of life date could have easily been 18 March 2017. But I was fortunate enough to see another day.

And with that second opportunity I want to get out and about and do things that will make me smile and understand there is happiness to be found.


If that involves getting on a plane and travelling the globe or one day getting back on the bike and cycling around to areas I never got to do beforehand, then I will be making the most of second opportunity.


Be sure you make the most before your expiry date us reached.

Hidden Dreams 

I had a dream that no one else could see.

This happens to be the case for many people. They live their lives dreaming of something they think they truly need. Or are least something their heart desires. Want versus need is a real struggle for all of us.

The dream can be anything from owning a brand new Ferrari or top of the range Mercedes Benz. The cars may be out of their price range, but they can still dream of what the soft leather seats would feel like as they slip behind the custom built steering wheel.


Others dream of jetting around the globe, flying first class, sipping French champagne in the VIP lounge before take off. And when they arrive at the next destination, staying in 5 star hotels and resorts.


They are great dreams and we are happy enough to share them with family and friends when they ask what we really want in life and the future. We can go into details of every part of what we want.

Like many people, I have dreams of new cars, a new road bike that’s worth more than my current car. I fantasise of overseas trips and travel through cities far from home while eating delicacies from the local cafes and bars.


But then there are the dreams we keep to ourselves and keep hidden in the dark depths of our minds, and only let them come to the surface when we feel the need to really dream.


These are the dreams that are so much closer to the heart. They don’t involve cars, travel or far off locations. They are the dreams our hearts not only desire, but are the very dreams that make us smile the moment we let them shine through all the grime of our daily lives.

Perhaps it’s time we let others know of our heartfelt dreams. We might be pleasantly surprised when others show us they want the same thing, but were also afraid to let their dreams.

Live life. Dream big.

Live life and be happy

 

One_live_to_Live

We have but one life to live, and we must do everything in our power to ensure we are happy.  In some cases, no matter what the outcome is for those around us.

This is something that we should all think about, no matter what stage we are in our lives. Young, old, single or in a relationship. Our happiness starts, and ends with us. We don’t need to rely on anyone else in  our lives to bring that smile to our faces and make us walk with a pep in our step.

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No matter who we have around us in our lives, they are there for a reason, but is that reason to make us happy? They may be there to make us smile and share good times with, and if we are in a relationship, there is more than just a few laughs and smiles we want from our partners, it’s love, understanding  and friendship.

friendship and understnading

So when we start to feel we are on that e, we need to look in our own minds and hearts to get us back on track and get that smile back our dial. In the end, we are the only ones who are in complete control of our happiness, even when we have so much going on around us.

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We need to take control of what is bringing us down and keeping us from cracking a smile. If there is something that is holding us back from true happiness, we either need to make a change, or ditch the negativeness and get back on track.

The longer we are happier in our own skins, the longer we can continue to bring happiness to others. And that my friends, is what life’s all about. Sharing joy and happiness.

Sliding Doors

We are all aware of the ‘sliding doors’ scenario. As one opportunity is missed, another one takes its place. Sometimes for better, and other times for the worse. But no matter what choices we make, we will end up where we were meant to be.

This was the case on the day of my cycling accident, it could have ended up much differently had I made other choices on my first 25 kms of the ride.

As I headed towards Safety Beach, I slipped in behind another cyclist who was moving a few kms quicker than my normal pace, but I decided i should try and keep up with him for as long as possible and increase my stamina.

Sitting in his slipstream for 5 or so kms, I thought to myself this could be one of my quicker rides of the year. But as we approached a street heading up towards Arthur’s Seat, he turned into the street and I decided to continue with my original plan and do the hill climb of Arthur’s Seat the next day. Had I followed him, it might have been an entirely different ride, and a possibly a very different outcome to my day.

So I continued on solo for a while before turning back and setting my sights on Point Nepean. 60 kms away with a light headwind and the sun shining in the blue sky. A perfect day for a ride I kept telling myself.


As I looked ahead, I saw the set of lights change to amber, and instead of braking hard, I cruised through and continued on my merry way without a problem.

Looking back at the day, either one of those sliding door moments would have made a huge difference to my unhappy ending. Or would they have made no difference at all?

Would I have been injured on another part of my ride that day? Coming back down Arthur’s Seat at a breakneck speed. Or would have I gotten away without an injury? It’s hard to know which would have been the case, but what happened on that day, happened for a reason.

A reason I’m still unsure about, but one that didn’t leave me lying dead on the side of the road that morning. And for that I’m still very thankful. Even though it’s been a long and tough journey to recovery, I am hoping it will worthwhile in the long run, not just for me, but for my family and friends.

In the end, we will be where we are meant to be, no matter the twists, turns and tumbles we take.

Enjoy the journey with friends, family and loved ones. As the destination has been set. Life is too short for regrets.

Missed opportunities 


Some things slip through our fingers when we least expect them. It’s after the event we realise how much of a missed opportunity it really was.


We can’t go back and relive what we missed out on, but we can make amends by having another go at the opportunity which slid past us at a rapid rate of knots.

Some of the missed opportunities we can only blame ourselves for, while others are taken away, leaving us with a longing for what we missed.


This was the case earlier this year for me, a trip to Europe, starting in France and then through to Italy to visit family. But, due to a negligent driver, my trip was cancelled due to injuries incurred, and so were my dreams of sipping coffee and eating freshly made croissants in the very heart of Paris.


Just because I missed out on this opportunity, it doesn’t mean it won’t happen in the future. All that’s needed is some spare time and holiday planning.

So when an opportunity is missed, it’s not the end of the world. Get up and have another shot at it. We only live once and deserve to be happy, and to make the most of every moment.


Don’t wait, enjoy life, it may be taken away in the blink of an eye.

No Promises

There are some promises that are easy to keep, such as, I promise to mow the lawns this weekend, or I promise to fix blocked gutters before it rains again.

Then there are other promises that are more difficult to keep, no matter how hard you try.

One of my promises to my wife was that I would ride safe and be careful every time I went out on the road bike. Rain, blowing winds and sunny days, I would tell her the same thing as she lay in bed and I ventured off for my morning rides.


This was one promise I broke sometime in mid March 2017. My intentions were good and my years on the bike made no difference at all on this bright and sunny Saturday morning along the Melbourne peninsula. My lights were flashing and I was wearing my multicoloured cycling outfit. But still, a broken promise.

Having been on the road for close to an hour, I knew my halfway point for my outing. There was a slight headwind as I headed towards Point Nepean, and I was pushing myself harder than normal. It must have been the fantastic conditions, and I was out on my own and nothing but 80s music streaming through my headphones and a clear mind.

In a split second, my entire life was about to take a tumble for the worse. But it could have been far more serious. So I consider myself extremely lucky. And I was given a lifeline. 

A car coming in the opposite direction performed an illegal turn in front of me. Obviously not having seen me. And I’m not what one would consider a small unit.

With less than a split second to do something. I did the obvious. I hit his front side guard at over 30 kilometres per hour.

The first and only thing that went through my mind was, it’s over. Goodbye!

I flipped over his hood, landing on my arse and then ploughed into his windscreen, shattering it into thousands of pieces with my shoulder. And my journey continued I somersaulted over his car, as I watched my glasses and iPhone fly well ahead of me.

Landing on the ground more than 12 feet away from his car, I later discovered I broke my back. My L4 to be exact. And in thst split second, my life had changed. Forever!


Pain filled every fibre of my body, but for some unknown reason, I was still able to move my arms and legs. A positive sign I thought as I screamed in pain as I was surrounded by some very helpful and concerned bystanders.

The ambulance trip to the Frankston hospital was one without all that much pain, but I would have to say the morphine in my system had a lot to do with that fact.

The next few hours with my wife beside me at the Frankston hospital and then at the Alfred hospital trauma centre were good, bad, anxious, concerning, and the scariest hours of my life.

I was eventually told I had a broken back, but signs were positive because I was able to move my arms and legs. No internal or neauralogical damage, so another positive sign.

After leaving the hospital five days later, and in a very uncomfortable back brace I was to wear for the following 12 weeks. In some desperate hope my back would heal on its own and no surgery would be required.

With all the damage I had suffered, I was extremely lucky not to have injured any of my spinal nerves and no other nerves impacted. I only have God to thank for that. And not having died on the side of the road was something I still look back at and wonder why?

The following 12 weeks were filled with some of the lowest points in my life. Not just the pain, but the not knowing how and if I would fully recover. And at the lowest point, if I really wanted to continue. I knew deep down I had to abandon all fear if I was to make it through.

With the help and support of family and friends, I struggled through and continued to make progress. First getting out of bed without assistance, and eventually able to walk to my letterbox.

I have to admit ut did get a little easier the more I moved. I ended up going on 5 kilometre walks as the weeks dragged by. My only outings were visits to surgeons and physiotherapists.

The long road of rehabilitation lays ahead of me, 6-12 months I’ve been told before I’m back to the condition I was in before the accident.

In the end, what got me through was love and friendship. And lots of pain medication.

My Scott carbon fibre bike was written off, but I still have my Avanti, which is patiently waiting for me to decide on my path forward.


As for the path after rehabilitation, do I go back to the one sport I loved with a passion, or do I take up stamp collecting, as suggested by my brother.


Whatever I decide, I have honestly found that love and friendship conquers all, physical and mental pain.

No Promises – Icehouse

A Lucky Break

As i dropped off my Avanti road bike off to my local bike shop for its six monthly major service, I knew it was going to need a set of new tyres as well as a full service. Not cheap, but very necessary.

And I also knew I would only be off the road for a few days, so i dropped it off early in the week to ensure it would be ready for my weekend rides through the Dandenong hills.

So when I stopped by the bike shop after work on the Friday to pick up my bike, I found Marcus waiting for me to hand it over.

We chatted for a while about the weekend plans and I mentioned the hills I would be descending. And I asked for a new set of brake pads, even though they weren’t worn all the way down. Better safe than sorry I thought when I knew the downhills and corners of the Dandenongs.

He hoisted the bike back onto the rack and slipped my used pads off and was about to replace them with the new set when I heard him say. ‘Damn!’

I walked over to the bike and he pointed out a serious crack in my bike frame. It was well hidden and was only visible when working on the back brakes.

It was then I understood his serious concerns. The next bump I went over with the bike in that condition would have possibly been my last. The frame would have snapped and I would have gone head over heels and caused myself some major injuries.

The bike frame had a 10 year warranty, so it was only a matter of requesting a new frame and waiting for my bike to be re assembled.

So after what seemed an eternity (three weeks) my bike was back together and with a new and updated carbon fiber frame.

The very next weekend I headed up, and back down the Dandenongs without a care in the world.


I do think that was a very lucky break. So sometimes we get lucky, and other times it just doesn’t go out way.

Ride safe.