Scribd vs Kindle Unlimited for books

I’m currently on my FREE MONTH TRIAL of Scribd.

Listening to borrowed audio books.

Researching borrowed digital copies of hiking guidebooks.

When my month is up my downloads with Scribd disappear.

You get to keep Kindle books forever. But can only download up to 10 books a month on Kindle Unlimited where you can download as many as you want with Scribd.

Seems to me I should NOT subscribe to either — rather purchase books one-at-a-time as needed, OR sign up for a month or two if and when I need hiking guidebooks where the price exceeds monthly subscription.

There’s the occasional fiction title I want on Kindle, as well. My brother’s detective novels, for example.

My Apple Watch 5 Review

I went decades without a watch ‘cuz TIME ain’t the boss of me.

When I finally got around to trying Apple Watch 3, I was instantly hooked. It’s an essential part of my life now. I can’t live without a smart watch. 

LOVE IT. 

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Having broken two Apple Watch 3 faces already, when I decided to upgrade the 5 I paid the extra for Apple Care. It covers everything for 2 years.

The normal warranty is 1 year and does not cover cracked glass, the most common way to break it.

In addition, for even more protection, I added an OtterBox Exo Edge Rugged Apple Watch Case.

Watch a video on that product.

Initially I thought the much cheaper Apple Watch 3 would do everything I need.

… Until Rene Ritchie convinced me to upgrade to the 5. Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

How much does it cost?

If you have to ask, you can’t afford it.

Get a Casio. 😀

Banff Film Festival World Tour 2019-20

Always inspiring.

It’s the 40th year of the World Tour.

They used Mount Royal University in 2020 as one of their Calgary venues for the first time.

Click PLAY or watch the trailer on YouTube.

I’m a WINNER.

Here’s the official Film Festival Speed Lite 12 day pack by Deuter I won by random draw. US$54 on Amazon.

Festival poster.

… visiting Dubai, cycling Oman?

I’m considering heading to Oman for the first time. For hiking and cycling.

Perhaps October 2020.

Craggy peaks and rugged terrain, empty deserts and a long picture-perfect coastline, ancient castles and forts–that’s what draws adventure cyclists to Oman. …

Why Oman deserves a Spot on your Bicycle Touring Bucket List

Watch a video on Lonely Planet.

my 2019 YEAR in REVIEW

Tim Ferriss recommends we review the past year (which was GREAT) before making any plans for the next.

I want to be a #winner in 2020. Like this guy.

1. What were three to four highs of last year … and three to four lows?

23 day cycling tour of Patagonia

24 day cycling tour of the Pacific N.W. 

30 days in Nepal – hiking and dental work

first visits to Prague and Budapest

So … travel, hiking and cycling remain my annual highlights.

I can’t recall any significant lows. I broke two laptops. Got stuck in Hungary without an exit visa. Ruined a pair of shoes. Nothing significant.

2. What enabled or motivated you to reach those highs, and how did you successfully move through the lows?

For travel I was more organized than in the past. Put together detailed gear lists. Made my plans months ahead rather than weeks or days in advance.

3. What worked and didn’t work? In other words, what do you need to do more or less of?

More of the same. Get organized early for my travels in 2020.

I spent more than I earned in 2019. I should work more, play less in 2020.

I did not ski enough in 2019. My goal is at least 5 days downhill.

4. What stressed you out the most, and how could you navigate it better?

Bicycle maintenance stresses me out. I’ve now downloaded The Complete Bike Owner’s Manual to my laptop and phone.

My only medical concern is high blood pressure.  Need to monitor that more consistently.

I follow the high crimes and misdemeanours of Trump. The world seems to be getting worse, not better. … BUT my own life is unaffected. I don’t worry about an unexpected health care emergency as so many Americans do.

5. And, most important, what were you most grateful for in 2019, and how can you take that into 2020?

Good health. Myself and my family.

I ran more in 2019 than I have since at least 2008. Should run an hour a day  at least 45 days of 2020.  Enter at least 3 races in 2020.

related – How (and why) you should give yourself a year-end review

running race Pokhara, Nepal

♫ … going to Kathmandu?

Kathmandu is awful. One of the most polluted cities of the world. Traffic is a nightmare. Drinking water highly risky. The airport is horrid.

UPDATE – the core streets of the tourist area Thamel have been made mostly pedestrian only. That’s a BIG improvement.

On recent trips I’ve flown into Kathmandu — then departed as quickly as possible to Bhaktapur or Pokara.

For one thing, many visitors get sick in Kathmandu within the first couple of days.

In 2019 I ended up staying in Kathmandu two days at the end of my trip as the departure was out of the city.

As always, I visited my favourite attraction — the Monkey Temple.

Swoyambhunath is an ancient religious complex atop a hill in the Kathmandu Valley … It is also known as the Monkey Temple as there are holy monkeys living (there) …

The Swayambhunath complex consists of a stupa, a variety of shrines and temples, some dating back to the Licchavi period. A Tibetan monastery, museum and library are more recent additions. …

The stupa consists of a dome at the base, above which is a cubical structure painted with eyes of Buddha looking in all four directions with the word “unity” in the main Nepali dialect between them …

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The second night I went, as usual, to the Great Stupa. Had dinner on one of the rooftop restaurants.

The ancient Stupa is one of the largest in the world. The influx of large populations of refugees from Tibet has seen the construction of over 50 Tibetan Gompas (Monasteries) around Boudhanath. As of 1979, Boudhanath is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. …

Tibetan merchants have rested and offered prayers here for many centuries. When refugees entered Nepal from Tibet in the 1950s, many decided to live around Boudhanath. …

Here are a few other random photos from my last days in Nepal.

Sizzler at Rum Doodle (new location)

unique and excellent donair Nepali-style

I’ll be back. There’s no better way to hike the Himalayas than from Nepal.

Looking to river valley between two 8000m peaks

traveling the world on my birthday

It’s my birthday. 62-years-young today.

I’ve been on the road for many birthdays.

My 53rd was in Porto, Portugal.

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I’ve had a few birthdays out on the hiking trail too.

Spent my 57th birthday tenting in a stone Yak shack at 4110m, close to the Tibet border in Nepal.

And for 62 I’m climbing up the Annapurna massif in Peru … Nepal.

You can see I’m already suffering old-timer’s disease. 😀