I just returned from a 3-day trip to Branson Missouri. I know what some of you are thinking. Alan is moving quickly into full up, ride the bus to Branson, see the oldies show, and eat at the buffet level of retirement.  Well, that is only partially true. You see, the primary purpose of this trip was to give my mother a vacation. This was my first trip to Branson and I did have a good time. I was apprehensive about this trip based on my preconceived idea of a Branson vacation. My vision of Branson was a continuous run of country music shows attended mostly by senior citizens. This concept was somewhat correct in that there are many country music shows and I was very much on the lower end of the age spectrum which made me happy.

This blog entry will be mostly a travel review but there is a business concept I will amplify towards the end.

There is more to Branson than just country music. We saw 7 shows in 2.5 days and only 2 of them were typical country music fares. Branson is organized around a highway that is effectively a Las Vegas type strip full of restaurants, hotels, and theaters. We drove to Branson from Houston which is about a 10-hour drive. Branson does have an airport with connections to many major cities. You will need a car in Branson. I did notice that Uber was available, but I didn’t take a ride. Uber might be a good way to get around to the different shows. Especially if you are traveling with a person of limited mobility. There are many busses in Branson. Senior citizens traveled to Branson via bus from all over the country. The buses were only a problem one time when it seems every bus in town decided to go to the same show.

We stayed at the Grand Victorian Hotel. The hotel is in a great location on the strip just minutes from most attractions and restaurants. The hotel appears a bit dated but is very clean and nicely decorated. The staff was helpful in accommodating my mother and our request to be closer to the elevator. The complimentary breakfast was very good consisting of hot food and many options. I recommend this hotel as a great location to base your Branson experience.

We spent most of our time attending the 7 shows we selected. We picked shows that we thought my mother would enjoy. We saw the following shows.

Clay Cooper and his wife are talented country music artists. The show was a bit overproduced with too many dancers and special effects. The Cooper’s pushed their two sons into performing several songs. This was a particularly sad display of nepotism as neither child could consistently sing on key.

A collection of very talented country musicians. They mostly played old school country music. There was a comedian as part of the show, he was very funny. This show was simple with a minimum of special effects. Their theme was, we play country music and we play it well. This was one of my favorite shows.

This show was a throwback to the music of the 1940’s. The singers and dancers were very talented and seemed to be more Broadway like than Branson. The production was a bit strange, but the music and dancing were good.

The idea behind this show was seven very talented folks putting on a variety show. The show was focused on various musical styles spanning several decades. Of the seven folks, three of them were from the same family and were clearly the leaders of the group. This show also had a child performing but unlike the Clay Cooper show, this 12-year-old girl was very talented. I was disappointed that their treatment of the 1960s didn’t include a single Beatles song. How is that possible?

This show was a Broadway type offering focused on music and dance from the 1930s and 1940s. Many of the songs were from famous musicals. It is hard to go wrong performing songs from George Gershwin and Irving Berlin. If you like this type of music and the associated dancing, then this show is for you.

The cast is made up of six brothers who have been performing together since childhood. They are very talented singers. Their version of “Mary Did You Know” was truly awesome. This was a great show, I would see these folks again if I ever venture to back to Branson.

I saw the Oak Ridge Boys many years ago when I was in college. The boys are getting up there in age and this fact is demonstrated in their voices. Mostly they stayed on key with their voices simply sounding a bit tired. The one exception was William Lee Golden. He attempted to sing “Mary Did You Know.” It was awful, clearly William Lee needs to retire or be moved to the background. It is amazing to me that groups like this will allow such an abysmal performance to take place in front of a paying audience. Despite this performance, the loyal Oak Ridge Boys fans loved the show.

In summary, of the shows I saw, I recommend Down Home Country and Six.

Purchasing tickets for shows in Branson is an interesting experience. There are many ticket sellers both online and in Branson. Apparently, some will sell you discounted tickets if you listen to a 90-minute timeshare pitch. Selling timeshares is a widespread activity in Branson. I even saw a place that helped you get rid of a timeshare. As a side note, from a financial perspective, never buy a timeshare. I will go into more details in a future blog entry. With all the confusion surrounding ticket purchases, I decided to buy directly from the theaters. I believe you can save some money shopping different sights and perhaps waiting to buy in Branson. With my mother in tow on this trip, I decided to not to cut any corners. I bought most of our tickets ahead of time. In most cases, I was sent a voucher or confirmation number to show at the box office. Parking at the shows was never a problem. I was even able to drop my mother off at the front door of every show.

The food in Branson is mostly comfortable southern American fare. Apparently, Branson is known for their buffets and we ate at the Grand Country Buffet. The food was predictable but good. The selection was huge and of course, I ate too much. Branson provides comfort food and is not a place to go if you want to push the boundaries of your exotic culinary pleasure.

Branson may be more inviting to families with children during the summer months. I saw plenty of outdoor entertainment venues such as waterparks, miniature golf, and amusement parks. These were all closed for the season during our visit.

In summary, Branson is a great place to visit if you are a senior citizen (65 plus), enjoy country music, and are inspired by consistent patriotism. Military veterans are treated especially well by the town of Branson. Veterans were asked to stand during every show and most of the time the musical theme from every military branch was played. I suspect Branson is also a great place for families, but I did not experience this perspective directly.

Now for a brief business analogy based on the shows I attended. There seems to be an attempt to raise the bar of Branson entertainment by adding dancers and special effects. While this effort is temporarily interesting, there is no substitute for talent. The shows I liked best had the most talented singers and musicians. Some of the singers were not even able to stay on key. If I pay money to see a musical entertainer, I expect them to sing on key at a minimum. Talented performers can easily overcome a lack of glamorous production and special effects. It is hard to hide a lack of talent, even with all the special effects and autotune in the world.

In my corporate career, I hired many people over the years. I was also involved in developing effective processes so we could deliver products on time and with the right level of quality. While developing a good process is important, hiring the best talent is more important. I have seen good processes fail due to the efforts of marginally talented people. I have seen marginal processes work fine when managed by top talent. Ideally the goal is both great talent and processes, however, talent always supersedes process. When hiring employees, always focus on getting the most talented person possible. A few times in my career I became lazy and filled a critical role with whoever was hanging around. I always regretted these moves. Push yourself hard to always hire and retain the best talent, you will never regret it.

Make the most of this day!

Jumbo Jet

United Airlines final Boeing 747 flight took place on November 7, 2017. I am an aviation geek who has flown over 1.5 million miles on United Airlines. I have always been especially fascinated by the Boeing 747.

Introduced in 1969 it was by far the largest airliner in the world. The 747 held this title for over 35 years. It was a multi-story 4 engine beast of an airplane. I fully understand the principle behind powered air flight, yet it is amazing to me every time I see a 747 take-off or land. It seems unnatural for so much metal to be in the air.

The 747 didn’t make short domestic flights, the airplane was usually headed to an exotic destination in a faraway land. This airplane came on the scene when air travel was still an exciting and enjoyable experience. Because of its tremendous range, the airplane opened quick travel to many remote places. In essence, the Boeing 747 made the world a smaller place.

It is hard to imagine the need to retire such a cool airplane. What happened to the 747 that makes it financially unfeasible in today’s aviation world? To begin with, the airplane is almost 40 years old. Despite numerous technology updates, the 4-engine behemoth is not fuel efficient compared to the modern twin-engine varieties. Long haul twin-engine airplanes have met and even exceeded the range of the 747. While these new airplanes don’t hold as many passengers as the 747, they are close enough for today’s aviation industry economics.

The 747 has a unique shape. Only the first part of the airplane is 2 stories. The 747’s unique capabilities have enabled it to fill several special roles. The 747 served as a carrier for the Space Shuttle.


The 747 also found duty as Air Force One.

Air_Force_One_on_the_ground.jpgI first flew on a 747 in 1987 from Frankfurt to Atlanta. I have since flown on this airplane countless times. Each flight was special as the 747 was the largest airplane in the sky and I was going someplace far away.

What can we take away from United’s retirement of the venerable Boeing 747? First, there is a season for everything. As amazing as the 747 is, its time has come and gone. We will have the memories of this airplane and the adventurous travel it represented. Many years ago, I had a friend tell me the value of memories. At the time I was not interested in memories, but I never forgot what she told me. I now understand the importance of memories. Nothing last forever but our memories help us relive some of the awesome times in our lives. The cool thing about memories is, no one can take them away.

The second key learning is to recognize when to let go of a successful product or technology and move on to the next big thing. See above for “nothing lasts forever.” For a business, this process is very hard to implement. Some examples of hanging on too long are Kodak with film, Hewlett Packard with ink and Blockbuster with videos. We may be seeing this same phenomenon soon with Apple and the iPhone. While hard to imagine, even Google with search will be replaced someday. Every product has a life cycle. The Boeing 747 was fortunate that is life cycle has lasted over 35 years. Entire companies have been destroyed due to the inability to recognize key technology and product transitions. The problem is fully explored in Clayton Christianson’s book The Innovators Dilemma.

Goodbye United Boeing 747, you changed the world for the better. I will always remember the joy and excitement you brought to air travel. Now it is time to book my next trip on the Boeing 787 Dreamliner!

Make the most of this day!

World Series

I am a lifelong Astros fan. The intensity of my love for this team has ebbed and flowed over the years. Baseball almost lost me during the steroid era but after a multi-year lull, I returned. I like other sports but there is something special about baseball and the Astros. In case you somehow haven’t heard, the Astros won the World Series on November 1, 2017. Many folks will say it is just a game but for me, it was a life-changing event.  When I woke up on November 2nd with my World Series hangover, I began to reflect on why baseball is so important to me.

The first reason is longevity. I have been following the Astros since I was a child in the mid-1960s. I am not sure when I attended my first game, but I do remember Jimmy Wynn and Rusty Staub as my favorite players during this period. I recall the Astrodome as the most amazing stadium of its time. As smoking was allowed inside back in the day, there was a cloud of smoke hanging over the field the entire game. Another highlight was seeing the grounds crew dressed as spacemen as they dragged the infield during the 5th inning. There is no telling how many games I have engaged with either watching, listening or attending in person. I believe it is easily over 1000 games. When I was a child, my primary way of connecting with the Astros was my transistor radio. After my mom told me to go to bed, I would turn on the radio and listen to the game through the earphone (sorry Mom). Many times, I would wake up late in the night with the game long over with my radio still on playing music or the news.

The second reason baseball is important in my life is heritage. My father loved baseball and passed that love on to me. My father died when I was 23 and I now find elements of his essence slipping from my memory. Baseball is the crutch that clarifies my father’s presence and the influence he had and continues to have, on my life. The games we attended and times we listened on the radio are crystal clear in my mind.  Baseball revives these memories of my father like nothing else adding to the beauty and wonder of this great sport. I have been able to instill a passion for baseball in my children and I hope they can continue this legacy with their own families. Baseball is an old sport steeped in history and tradition. Baseball has been a constant for many generations and is rooted in the fabric of American history. There is a common thread of thousands of games and overlapping careers binding today’s players to those players of old.

The third reason for the significant role of baseball in my life is, baseball is timeless. In this day of distraction, instant communication and time-bound lives, baseball has no clock and is not over until the proper number of outs have been recorded. Time drives most elements of our lives and we can’t control its relentless march forward. Time is what takes away the freshness of youth and brings the pain and struggles of old age. We can’t escape the relentless boundaries of time. For me, baseball is a way to escape, at least emotionally, from the constant drumbeat of time. Many people complain that baseball is slow, lasts too long and needs to change. I support some of these changes but fundamentally, baseball is unique and provides a needed escape from the constant time pressure of today’s society.

Fourth and finally, baseball is a sport of failure and overcoming adversity. I have lived through many Astro disappointments. The playoffs of 1980 and 1986 generate particularly intense memories. I attended a World Series game in 2005 but that team was not ready for the big stage. I still flinch when I hear the name Albert Pujols. In the past I have let myself become emotionally “all in” on the Astros playoff runs and have had my dreams shattered every time. As this year’s Astros pushed further into the playoffs, I began to ask myself how far would I let myself go this time? Was I emotionally ready to have my hopes dashed again? I was slow to commit my emotions. My son was helpful in that he inspired me to attend one of the ALCS games with the Yankees. Still, I had a feeling of foreboding dread each time the next Astros playoff game started. I became strangely superstitious, for example, I would not wear any of my Astro gear while watching the games on TV. In the end, I hung in there and watched the world series, including the exciting game 7. It is truly better to love and lose rather than not love at all. The lesson for me is not to fear letting my emotions go. I should spend my emotions more freely and certainly not just with sporting events. We can’t be so afraid of losing that we don’t try. Logically I know this, emotionally it is still a struggle for me.

So, this world series victory was a defining moment for me. It was probably not so impactful for many of you. What are the key points of this self-centered, rambling post? Longevity and heritage are good things. Maintaining a lifelong passion that connects to our family helps define who we are. Commitment and connections are important elements of our personal and professional lives. Finally, we should not be afraid to fail. It takes a logical and emotional effort to try something that might end in failure. The lesson from baseball is the best batters fail ~70% of the time. It is ok to fail. We need to shake off any self-pity and quickly step back up to the plate. Are you afraid to fail? Don’t let fear of failure lead you to that dreaded feeling of regret. Don’t be afraid, put yourself out there, take the risk!

Make the most of this day!



October 14th of this year marked the 70th anniversary of breaking the sound barrier. This feat was accomplished in the Bell X1 as it was piloted by Captain Charles (Chuck) Yeager of the USAF. Chuck Yeager is one of my life long heroes. Not only was he leading test pilot of the emerging jet age, he was a decorated World War 2 double ace. Yeager shot down 11 airplanes during the war and was himself shot down over France. He evaded capture by the Germans and returned to England to fly and fight again. 

After the end of the war Yeager became a test pilot. His flying ability was exceptional and he was selected to fly the Bell XS1 in an attempt to break the sound barrier. Yeager was not a typical test pilot. He was a high school graduate who started in the Army as a private. He earned his pilot’s wings through a wartime flying sergeants program. 

After breaking the sound barrier Yeager went on to a successful career as an Air Force officer eventually retiring as a Brigadier General. You can read about Chuck Yeager’s amazing life in his autobiography “Yeager.” Chuck Yeager Autobiography

There is a saying in aviation attributed to Harry Copeland. “There are old pilots and bold pilots, but there are no old, bold pilots.” Yeager was one of the boldest pilots ever and as of this writing he is still alive in his mid-90’s. How did Yeager live to be an old, bold pilot? While Yeager was an extremely talented and fearless stick and rudder pilot, his success and long life was attributed to his in-depth knowledge regarding the aviation task at hand. Yeager was relentless in working to understand all the systems involved in his assigned flight test. Yeager faced many daunting emergencies during his career. His complete knowledge of the situation saved his life many times. The saying “knowledge is power” is very true and in some cases it can save your life.

What can we learn from my hero Chuck Yeager? Whenever we face a significant event in our lives we should take the time to acquire as much knowledge as possible. With the availability of information in today’s world, approaching a major event with limited knowledge is inexcusable. Here are some examples of major events where knowledge is critical.

Buying a house or car

Selecting a college

Preparing for a job interview

Planning a vacation

Financial planning

Acquiring knowledge is critical when facing big decisions or events in our lives. The idea that knowledge equals power is a timeless concept. Approaching one of these events with limited knowledge is unwise. Do your homework, be prepared for the big events in your life!

Make the most of this day!


I am an avid baseball fan and have attended many games in the USA from little league to the major leagues. I am also a lifelong Astros fan so I am very excited about the upcoming ALCS games against the Yankees. A few weeks ago, I attended a baseball game in Taipei Taiwan. This was my first appearance at a game outside the USA and it had a profound effect on my traditional view of baseball games.

Baseball is known as a laid-back sport. While there is plenty of action and excitement, there are also more lethargic times as well. Examples of action and excitement are; home runs, scoring plays, and great fielding. In contrast, examples of lethargy are; visits to the mound, throws to first base, and pitching changes. The crowd’s excitement in baseball ebbs and flows with the action, or lack of action, on the field. Unlike football, there are no bands or cheerleaders in baseball, at least this was my belief prior to attending the game in Taiwan.

During my stay in Taiwan, I mentioned to one of my students that I like baseball. He asked if I would like to go see a game between the Lions and the Monkeys. These teams are part of the Chinese Professional Baseball League (CPBL) in Taiwan and they were scheduled to play in a few days. I agreed to go to the game. I had heard these games in Taiwan were different from the US brand of baseball and I found this premise to be true.

The stadium looked like a minor league stadium from the USA. The field was well kept and the stands were full. One of the first unusual things I noticed was a section for the band. There was also an area above each dugout for the cheerleaders. As the game started, the cheering started and never stopped. In fact, after the game as we walked to our car about a mile away, we could still hear the victorious Lions crowd cheering away into the night. When I say cheers, I mean intensely organized cheers for each player. I have never seen such an enthusiastic and raucous crowd.

Taiwan Baseball Cheering Video

(Note you may need to click on the video a couple of times to get the audio to play)

The baseball was very good, it compares to AA ball in the USA. Overall the experience of baseball in Taiwan was wonderful. The most enduring element I took away from the game was the enthusiasm shown by the crowd. The crowd’s enthusiasm was constant during the good and bad plays. The fans never left their team or player’s virtual side. The crowd’s team loyalty was absolute.

Enthusiasm goes a long way to making life better. Showing enthusiasm during difficult times can ease pain and provide hope. I have also found enthusiasm to be effective in filling my gaps in talent and intelligence. I have a natural tendency towards sarcasm that can sometimes lead to negative comments and ideas. I constantly fight this tendency and have found demonstrating enthusiasm a great remedy.

Admittedly at times, it is hard to show enthusiasm. Towards the end of my career at Hewlett-Packard, it seemed like we were working on age-old problems I had seen many times. With my “vast experience” I believed I had seen it all and many of the solutions suggested by my colleagues seemed old and tired. After all, we had tried these things many times over the years. I became jaded and cynical at work and I am sure this attitude was evident to my co-workers. I regret the missed opportunities to show enthusiasm to my co-workers during this time of my career.

How do we show enthusiasm when we don’t feel like it? One way is to be a constant encourager to those around us. We can also have a positive attitude and focus on the bright side of life. Encouragement is a wonderful gift we should learn to distribute no matter the circumstances. Like most action plans that make the world a better place, showing enthusiasm requires us to put the needs of others ahead of ourselves. It is amazing how many problems selflessness solves. Think about your actions over the past few days, have been enthusiastic?

Make the most of this day!

Out of Control

I just returned from a 3-week mission trip to Taiwan. The trip went well, however, the logistics on the trip home were a bit challenging. In my attempt to save money on airfare, I booked a return trip through Beijing with a 22-hour layover. Before booking this flight, I confirmed that I could get a 24-hour temporary visa that would allow me to stay in a hotel for most of the layover. Upon contacting the airline, I found out they would cover the cost for my hotel stay. I was feeling pretty good about this leg of the journey, especially about the money I was saving.

I have been to the Beijing airport many times and have struggled with logistic issues such as incredibly long lines. As the time for my return trip was getting closer, I was trying to forget my previous frustrations. The flight from Taiwan to Beijing went well. Upon arriving at the Beijing airport, I started looking for the 24-hour visa area. There were no signs signaling this service. After 45 minutes of confusion, I found the 24-hour visa line. The line didn’t look too long but after a while, I realized it was not moving, not even an inch. There much confusion about which forms to complete, but finally after over 2 hours, I had my temporary visa. I then headed to the immigration line for another 45-minute wait. The transition to the hotel went fine but I was hungry. In my mind, I pictured a hotel with an open restaurant. I was even contemplating ordering room service. When I arrived at the hotel, I began to suspect my hopes for food would be dashed. The driveway to the hotel was a muddy mess. The area around the hotel was completely dark. I recognized this as a local hotel where I would struggle to communicate. The check-in went well and I asked about the possibility of food. I was told all they had to offer was beer from a vending machine.


Dinner Suggestion


I ventured to my room and ate the remnant of my trail mix and drank water. I was given a breakfast voucher so I began to pin my hopes on a meaningful meal in a few hours.

While emotionally my hopes were high for a familiar breakfast, intellectually I realized I was staying at a very local hotel and the upcoming meal was likely to be very slanted towards the Chinese palate. Sure enough, the breakfast offering was boiled cabbage and rice. I made due with the food and began to think about leaving for the airport early to get a pizza.

I left for the airport an hour earlier than recommended with the idea of lingering over my pizza meal while relaxing prior my flight. Upon my arrival at the airport, I noticed very long lines at the airline counters. No problem for me, I already had my boarding pass, my pizza awaits! I then saw the line, or mob, waiting in the Chinese immigration line. This was the largest mass of humanity I have ever seen.



Chinese Immigration at the Beijing Airport


Realizing there was no alternative and I had no control of the situation, I jumped to the end of the line. There was a lot of pushing and shoving in this line. A couple of times I felt the line sway to and fro and I am not sure I voluntarily moved my feet. Finally, after 1.75 hours. I was cleared through immigration. Immediately on the other side of the immigration counter, I saw that the security line, or mob, began. This line was even longer and more intimidating than the previous one. This line moved faster and after an hour or so, I was cleared through security. After waiting in these lines for almost 3 hours the time of my departure was quickly approaching. I don’t think it is possible to leave too early for the Beijing airport. I ran to the Pizza Hut and gobbled down a small pizza. After rushing to the gate, I discovered my flight was delayed due to air traffic control congestion. I was not surprised, all of these people had to be going somewhere.

What is the point of taking you through my flail at the Beijing airport? Throughout all of this waiting at the airport, I had no control of the situation. Historically I don’t do well when I lack control. My typical reaction is the ignition of a tremendous amount of internal stress that is revealed through my negative body language and sarcastic comments. In my retired and theoretically more relaxed state, I did pretty well through most of the delays. There were times when I felt the old frustration well up. But really, what was I going to do? If I want to go into China it is not like there are alternatives to Chinese immigration. Despite the frustrating delays, the best course of action was to wait until I was served by the government employees.

What can we do when faced with the “out of control” situation?

  • Internalize stress and worry
  • Vent our stress and worry to those around us, potentially exhibiting anger
  • Quickly analyze reasonable solutions, then let unresolved issues go
  • Be patient and realize the time spent waiting is not wasted
    • We decide how to use our time
    • Possible actions are
      • Engaging others in conversation to lower their stress
      • Thinking about something else
      • Use your phone as distraction

Our goal should be to remain at peace during life’s annoying and irritating situations. By doing this we can enjoy more contentment and bring joy to others. A release from self-centeredness is the key. Learn to think about others more, your stress will fade away!

Make the most of this day!

The Bicycle

I am not much for nostalgia. I like to think about the present and the future more. The idea of studying genealogy or reminiscing about the past normally does not appeal to me. My mother is an accomplished genealogist who has done years of work researching our family history. I know she wishes I cared more about this topic. I do care a little but I remain far removed from havinimage.jpgg a genealogy passion.

I do not have many items from my childhood, just a few items my father gave me. I do have some photographs and I think my mother probably has some more. I do have plenty of memories from childhood. Mostly playing with my sister. We played Batman and Robin. Since I was older, I was Batman. I also played outside with my friends. We played basketball or football. We played outside until called in for dinner.



Despite a focus on the future and a lack of childhood memorabilia, there is one item in my house that has survived the test of time and my propensity to not retain old things. Sitting in our den is my first bicycle. The bicycle has evolved from a functioning means of transportation, albeit somewhat ancient, to a decorative piece that holds dried flowers. For years I have looked past or ignored this decoration as it rested in our den. A few weeks ago, I looked at the bicycle and had an epiphany. This epiphany included a flood of memories represented by this bicycle.

I learned to ride a bicycle when I was 4 and a half years old. This means the bicycle dates from early 1964. As of this writing, the bicycle is 53 years old. The bicycle is red in color and has an adjustable bar to convert it from a girl’s bike to a boy’s bike. It is currently configured as a girl’s bike as my sister learned to ride on it after me.

One of the memories that washed over my mind was that of my father running behind me while I tried to learn to ride without training wheels. I remember looking back and seeing that my father was no longer helping me and that I had been riding the bike myself for several yards. Upon realizing I was riding alone, I immediately fell off the bike. Eventually, I mastered riding a bicycle. This small red bicycle represents one of my earliest physical, mental and emotional accomplishments. Then there is the permanent image I have of my father running behind me trying to enable my success. Though this literal image was never repeated, the figurative image represents the idea of my father continuously helping me be successful by training me and then letting me try and fail on my own. The impact of this approach lingers to this day and would continue to be effective with today’s children.

If you have known me for any length of time, you know I am clumsy. I have had numerous accidents resulting in various combinations of cuts (stitches), broken bones and surgeries. This little red bicycle was part of my first foray into an inconvenient injury. After watching a movie about King Arthur, I decided it was time to do a little jousting on my bike. I found a long pole somewhere and proceeded to attack my opponent. Before we engaged in combat, my pole hit the ground and threw me off the bike. I landed on the curb and broke my collarbone.  As was customary during this time, my parents waited several days before taking me to the doctor. Finally, my mother decided to take me in and get an X-Ray.

So, where am I going with this bit of self-indulgent writing? My key point is memories are not such a bad thing to recall. I found a certain amount of peace and completion in contemplating the memories ignited by staring at my old red bicycle. These memories reminded me about the core of who I am and brought unexpected joy to this “let’s live for the moment” guy. My conclusion is I need to reflect more on the history of my life. I believe it helps make us complete when we occasionally reflect upon the past. Besides the happiness we may receive, there are also lessons from the past we can relearn so we can be better equipped to deal with the future. Maybe I will even take a look at some of my Mother’s genealogy information.

Do you have some old photographs you have not reviewed in a while? Do you have some memorabilia that can help you relive old memories? I have found music to be an effective tool to take me back to a specific place and time. Perhaps you should dig up some music from your past and take a trip down memory lane. Do not be too busy with the cares of the day that you forget the past. Let your past experiences and memories help build you into a better person.

Make the most of this day!