East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai


1300 Mondays

In the opening chapter of his The Doorstep Mile(that once again, is highly recommended) adventurer Alastair Humphreys writes:

I have fewer than 2000 Mondays left to live. I want to make the most of them, not just tick them off.

This gave me pause.
How many Mondays do I have left?, I wondered.
I made some quick calculation, based on my family data.
Both my grandfathers died in their early seventies.
My father died at seventy-six.
On my mother’s side we tend to be more long lived – we usually get in our ’90s if cancer does not get at us earlier.
I am 52, so… how many Mondays?

Less than 1300 is a good estimate.
What am I going to do with them?

Humphreys’ idea, presented in his book, is to try and do something that makes me happy. Even something small.
Something that does not drastically change my life overtime, but that in due time will make me able to enjoy a lot more those 1300 Mondays, and all the other days.

I am working on it.
Now I have a deadline.

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Into the Empty Quarter

Wilfred Thesiger’s Arabian Sands was one of the first true-life adventure books I remember reading, about thirty-five years ago. The book was published in 1959, and collected Thesiger’s notes about his travels in the Empty Quarter of the desert of Arabia between 1945 and 1950.

The book is apparently on the Excluded Products list on Amazon, so while you can still buy the ebook through this link, I won’t see a single penny for the sale. But I don’t give a damn – this post is to recommend a fine book, not to make money. And screw Amazon.

And as I am at it, here’s the short version of the movie of the expedition Alistair Humphreys and Leon McCarron undertook in the steps of Thesiger a few years back.