Thoughts on Life, Art, Photography, Technology, Teaching and Travel…..
I can’t believe I’m actually 60 years old today and it’s already 2 weeks into 2013. All I can say is life so far has been an incredible “wild and crazy” roller coaster ride with lots of twists and turns, ups and downs, hills and valleys and joys and sorrows. I must admit, I’m a little surprised I actually made it to 60 considering some the crazy things I’ve done over the years like jumping out of perfectly good airplanes and repelling out of choppers during my service in the Army. Its good to be alive though and I am hoping for lots more adventures in the future.
This past year I retired from full-time college teaching and administrating for the Community College System of North Carolina. I had a wonderful and fulfilling teaching career and feel as though I made a difference in many of my art and photography students lives. That is what teaching is really all about. At least it is for me. Sharing my knowledge, passion and insights about art and photography with my students. Its a great feeling to see so many of my former students (too many to list here) working in the arts and photographic fields and being successful.
For the past 6 months I’ve traveled and photographed through 9 countries and countless cities and towns in both Europe and Central America. I absolutely love teaching art and photography and will continue pursuing it online on a part-time basis. The teaching feeds and reinforces my other creative endeavors. I now have more freedom to pursue my other passions such as photography, painting, travel, writing and editing for Transmedia and conducting art and photo workshops around the world for the Vasa Project.
Turning 60 is a huge benchmark for anyone, so today I’m feeling very introspective and counting the many blessings God’s granted me in this life. I am blessed with a great friends, wonderful, supportive and loving parents that are still alive and two great young adult children (Adam and Andei).
I’ve also met a wonderful, creative and loving woman (Regina Canas) here in El Salvador. We have a great time together traveling around Central America photographing and exploring the many wonders of this scenic and magical region. Yes…life is good right now, yet I am well aware that challenges and set-backs can arise at anytime in ones life. I’ve learned its important to try and keep a positive attitude and not to let the set-backs beat me down emotionally.
I am extremely proud of both my adult children! It warmed my heart when visiting my son Adam’s class last month and observing him teaching English and writing to a Salvadorian students using iPads. I now have another teacher in the family. My daughter Andei is an incredibly talented artist and photographer and is now living and working in the LA area.
So life goes on after 60. I’m heading back to my home in Eastern North Carolina Monday to regroup after my six month travel/photo sabbatical. Its time to focus on my part-time online teaching and do some planning for the next series of travel adventures.
So to all you newly retired people out there that are hitting 60 and above. There’s a lot more life to live and exciting things to do. Don’t spend it watching TV and vegging in the couch. Plan you own adventure and live life to the fullest while you still can. Good luck in your travels and here’s to a new series of travel adventures in the future. You can check out my thoughts, observations and photographs from all my previous travels on previous posts on my blog.