East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

Something new in four weeks, and dreams of gardens

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Two ideas I picked up on the web today.
First, this morning a contact of mine asked his followers on Twitter about what useful skill they could learn in a month. Something that would be useful, or make them happy and take away their worries when they feel down. To me, such a skill would be cooking, or better, the ability to hold my own in the kitchen – not necessarily knowing a lot of recipes, but being handy with the tools of the trade. Nothing better than cooking a simple, good meal, when you feel down.

But this got me thinking.
Is there a skill I do not have and that could be fun or expedient to acquire, and that I could acquire in a single month?
Through a handbook, or online courses, or Youtube videos or what else…
You know I like learning new stuff, and now that I’m getting old, I don’t feel like stopping.
And February has exactly four weeks.
So, what could I learn this coming February?
I am conducting a survey of my options – and if you feel like suggesting something, please do: the comments are open.

Meanwhile, another friend posted a quote about how gardening does not start in spring, but it does start in January as you dream of gardens.
And right now I’m going through a few gardening handbooks, because we’re planning to bring back the garden big time – we had a small herbs and vegetables garden but it went nowhere, and our father’s illness caused us to stop looking after it.

But now we are planning to start again, and do it properly – a shared vegetable garden, a friend helping us with it, because in this way we’ll all have a hobby, and we’ll keep each other on track, and then we’ll share the produce.

And it’s going to be fun (in a slightly dangerous way), because we are

  • a former paleontologist, currently working as a writer and translator
  • an aircraft technician turned Oriental languages student, currently working as a computer programmer
  • a physics student currently working in retail, a musician and martial artist in his spare time

Sounds like the weird set-up for a comedy movie, doesn’t it?
It will be fun, and while I am reading books and taking notes, I’ve half a mind of keeping a diary of our adventure, and turn it into a book.
Might work as a blog somewhere (Medium, maybe?) – or a vlog, if only I had the proper tech,
No safe for work, as a vlog, but it would be fun.

Anyway, now you know why I’ll be working on my new skill in February – because in January I’ve got to plan my vegetable garden (and learn stuff about gardening).
But keep those suggestions coming – I’ve got three weeks to pick a new skill and collect the resiources needed to start learning it!

Author: Davide Mana

Paleontologist. By day, researcher, teacher and ecological statistics guru. By night, pulp fantasy author-publisher, translator and blogger. In the spare time, Orientalist Anonymous, guerilla cook.

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