Guest Post by Caitlyn James: Who Are These Canfields?

Caitlyn 'Smokie' James
Caitlyn 'Smokie' James
I’ve busted in here to ask you something. It’s Caitlyn … the Canfields will be staying at our place in August.

Joel & Sue agreed to give me some space to do a fun little post pre-launch of their nomad’s adventure. I’ll hit send before they can do a full proof-read. You’ll see why.

Seriously, folks, who are these Canfields? Have any of you met them in person? Would you let them stay in your house?

I don’t have time to be cautious and subtle so I apologize in advance for being a bit crass….

First, I get they’ll be living in the house so opening up the medicine cabinet is reasonable. We’ll take most of the anti-psychotic drugs with us; the Warfarin can be moved into the shed – we rarely use it for people, but we have friends with a tendency to forget to go home and at the right dose, the Warfarin just makes them feel a little woozy and they decide it’s time to go. Nothing serious. Of course, we use it on the pests, too, but it smells so nasty when they die in the walls. Anyway, my question is, are Joel and Sue the kind of people who will use up your Tylenol if you leave half a bottle sitting there?

Second, Fiona seems like a cute kid, but is she really 6? Apparently, she reads chapter books, flies at the sight of dogs, and has her own website. Makes me wonder if this is one of those sting operations the cops do when they pose as teenagers online to lure pedophiles. In this case, someone may have mentioned all the 6 foot deep holes we’ve been digging in the yard. The cops may have set up this kind-of-quirky family to infiltrate our home and networks. Fiona may very well be a donut eating 35-year-old with his own kid in kindergarten.

You see where I’m going with this. The Canfields might not be normal.

There’s this other thing. We LOVE our dog. Not in that nutty way that people can be with dog nail polish and bows in the hair; it’s just that we don’t see why people make their dogs eat on the floor. RK (Racoon Killer) has his dog dish on the table when we eat our dinner. I’m afraid Joel might try to change this. I dunno, I’m thinking he might be worried when RK takes an innocent little lick off Fiona’s plate. Problem is, RK has never taken direction all that well. Without a whole long story, let’s just point out that I only have 3 fingers on one hand. That’s 3 fingers total, out of 2 hands total. My question to you? Do you think I should tell them in advance about this?

As long as they don’t deviate from the regular routines nothing will go wrong.

In fact, I’m writing up some stuff for them (you can read about that at http://ImaginingBetter.com on July 7th) so they will know what the routines are and a few helpful hints. Don’t look Bruce, the neighbour, in the eye, that kind of thing. It’s a nice neighbourhood, but Bruce is a little touchy. Most of the rest of them just leave us alone. Walk on the other side of the street, skip us when collecting for charities – really respectful. Not too many nosey parkers.

Other than feeding the dog, we aren’t expecting much. Lock the doors when you leave, water the crop on schedule. Harvest time should coincide nicely with the Visa bill arrival, if the watering is done right. That’s it.

If there’s anything you believe is important for us to know before we turn our house and our dog and the crop over to Joel, Sue, and Fiona (if that’s even who they really are) can you leave some comments here… or send me an email, easy2remember@caitlynjames.com, you know, so they don’t intercept the communication?

Yikes, gotta go. Send.

Download Update (Or, Why I Hate Bots)

We quickly reached 99 downloads of Camel’s Lash/Not Just Believe. Except, not really.

Turns out 49 of them went to the same IP address in Mauritius. (If I’m hoping to travel the world, I should find out where that is. Ah; there we go, just off the coast of Madagascar, which is just off the coast of Africa, but then, you knew that already. Population: 1.2 million. I guess now most of them have my song.)

I reset the counter to the 50 real downloads, and we’ll see where it goes. Somewhat deflating to realise that half my new fans are all personalities in the same head, apparently.

And now I’m concerned that maybe the tool only goes to two digits.

The Reasons Haven’t Changed

It’s going like gangbusters. We have sponsors. We have prospects for work above and beyond what we’d normally be doing in August. We have what we’d normally be doing in August, still happening. Support. Cheers from the crowd. Enthusiasm and excitement.

And I found myself thinking, boy, now we have to go.

No we don’t. Not if we’re doing it because of someone else, we don’t. That’s what this is all about, doing what we expect from ourselves instead of what others expect.

So hear this: if we change our minds, we can give the sponsorship funds back. If we make one trip and decide we’re not nomads after all, we can stay home.

Sorry; no, I’m not talking to you.

I’m talking to me.

Free Download of Our Theme Song

In February of 2009 I wrote and recorded a pair of songs about my desperate need for travel. We thought it would be nice to share them will all our supporters, so here, absolutely free, is the MP3 of Camels Lash/Not Just Believe

About the Music

Camel’s Lash

Inspired by a photo I saw of a caravan of camels, taken from the air. Miles and miles of red sand, and those camels trudging across the waste. Something inspiring and grand about it.

Other than cymbal, mandolin, vocal, and egg shakers, this is all my cheap Casio keyboard. Since I’ve never been able to make looping work, I actually played all repetitive percussion tracks (eight of them) all the way through. Assisted on the egg shakers by Fiona who was 4 at the time.

Camel’s Lash is the instrumental introduction to . . .

Not Just Believe

for Robyn Davidson (and myself)

A long time ago in I heard someone on TV talking about how restrained their life had been, how they’d read about far off places but never been anywhere. She summed it up by saying, “I want to know, not just believe, the world is round.” It struck me, even then, that I’ve always felt that way.

I could make these liner notes into a book about how badly I suffer from wanderlust.

A caravan of angry camels tramping o’er the dunes
Precious cargo swaying to and fro
They circle round and round the map that’s tacked up on my wall
As I lay restless, dreaming here below

They never seem to tire as they make their dusty way
Endlessly they circle ’round and ’round
They never take me with ’em on a journey far away
To see the things that Marco Polo found

I want to know the world is round
Not just believe

I read about those far off lands and wonder what it’s like
To wander through a market in Peru
To taste the precious spices of Madagascar‘s coast
And ride a camel into Timbuktu

Let me see the sails of a flying clipper ship
Grow on the horizon as it nears
Show me what the jungle’s like in darkest Africa
And the beauty of the garden in Algiers

I want to know the world is round
Not just believe

With Slocum and with Dana, two years before the mast
Help Amundsen find Scott in frozen lands
Then warmer climes with Ibn Battuta, out of old Tangier
Learn wisdom’s seven pillars in the sands

I want to tramp with Halliburton that romantic road
For seven years I’ll ponder in Tibet
Fly with Saint-Exupéry into the desert sands
And make a mark no one will e’er forget

I want to know the world is round
Not just believe

© 2009-2010 Joel D Canfield

Sponsors and Supporters and Everyone Wins

I’ve been busy working with individuals and businesses who would like to sponsor and support our efforts to work while on the road. This week I’m specifically working with those who want to sponsor and support the workshop for virtual assistants we are planning in August in Vancouver. We are working to create a situation where each sponsors and supporter receives as much value from their support of our efforts as we receive. That way everyone wins!

So here are some things I’m working on this week to gain support for our trip to host a workshop for virtual assistants in Vancouver.

  • Contacted 4 organizations related to the virtual assistant industry for sponsorship in exchange for promoting their organizations in every way possible
  • Contacted an additional organization we do business with to discuss possible sponsorship
  • Contacted individuals who are willing to contribute physical product, such as a book or CD, for give aways at the workshop in exchange for promoting their services and product. We already have 2 confirmed and are awaiting details to announce shortly.
  • Contacted Virtual Assistants around the world asking to support the cause by purchasing one or more of our products for Virtual Assistants, such as the book The Commonsense Virtual Assistant – Becoming an Entrepreneur, Not an Employee, or the workbook, Building Blocks: Succeed as a Chief Virtual Officer, in exchange for promoting their businesses.

There has been great response to date and lots of support and well wishers. Donations are beginning to come in and those who are not able to give monetary support are asking how else they can support the cause.  Here are ways you can show your support.

  1. Click that Donate button on the left and make a donation of any amount.
  2. Click on the Store button on the navigation bar and make a purchase. More items will be added soon.
  3. Follow us on Twitter (@NomadCanfields) and retweet our posts.
  4. Share this blog with everyone you know and mention it on Facebook.

Thank you to those of you who have already shown your support in some way or another! Watch for updates daily. We’ll be acknowledging our supports on our Shout Outs and Ballyhoo page.