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    • Many of the people who know me, know me as the girl who rode her motorbike halfway around the world. To be more precise, they know me because I rode my motorbike halfway around the world. This
      journey, this adventure, this mode of transport, they became part of me.

      Recently I’ve had times where I couldn’t ride for weeks or even months. I didn’t have a bike, was injured or some other reason kept me away from my beloved two-wheelers. By being out of the saddle, I slowly forgot why I loved riding so much. I was also more on edge, more easily agitated and grumpy for no reason.

      Than without exception, each “first time” back on the bike I fell back in love with riding. The sense of freedom, the power of the bike, the way the wind rushes past you… I was instantly happier, smiling and nicer to others. I was myself again.

      Even if we're not held back by injury or another genuinely good reason, in our busy lives we easily forget to spend that little bit of time doing the simple things that make us happy. The things that make me me, and make you you. The things that make us our whole selves.

      What are the simple things that you do that make you happy?

    • Hi Chantal, so great to see you here again. I notice your bio page says you're a Phd student in sports psychology? I'd love to hear more about that. I didn't see mention of it on your Facebook page, but what I did see are so many inspirational posts about world travel on a motorcycle and love of riding.

      Those simple things... I have a skateboard and after a few hours of work I just love to hop on and cruise around the neighborhood and the local parks. It's like being on a motorcycle, the rush of wind past my face, leaning into turns. It's 20 minutes of joy and not a care in the world.

    • What are the simple things that you do that make you happy?

      Great question... With some upfront costs out of the way I find those things are usually free for me...

      sometimes when i'm faced with a problem or something that needs some more consideration, I love just sitting down at my piano / keyboard or guitar and just letting my mind wander while I mess with chords and try to put together some sounds that sound like they should go together :). I can spend an hour or two straight and forget about everything else.

      Jumping on my road bike and going into the marin headlands was my favorite thing to do. Man I miss doing that. I think I've mentioned that on Cake a time or three :)

    • For me, sometimes even a short one hour ride, a walk and some meditation in a nearby forest park suffices to refresh senses and remind me what being alive means. And playing with the camera... taking way too many pictures of my motorcycle  📸

    • Thanks Chris. I think it's great to share these little things that make us happy. Guess that's the psychology side of me 😉 Riding a skate board always looks like freedom to me. Until I try and it's so wobbly and never goes where I want it too 😂 how long did it take you to learn?

      Yes I'm a PhD student in Sport Psychology. I studied sport science and got interested in the psychology later on. It might have something to do with spending a lot of time in my helmet 😉 good point you didn't see that on my Facebook page. It looks like it needs an update. I started the PhD about a year ago, looking at elite athletes' adjustment to major changes in life and sport in terms of their mental health. It's a great opportunity to be working in this field! So much to learn and share, and I hope I can add a little bit to it 😊

    • Nice! Music is so good for the soul. I love how you mention to just let your mind wander. We rarely give ourselves time for that while it can be so positively therapeutic. Thanks for sharing!

    • I love this thread. It's so integral to each of us, to find the one thing that brings us joy that if it's taken away from us we turn into monsters lol

      For me, it's a few things. A camera in my hand is one. I used to shoot for money and for other people, and over time it made me miserable. I had to turn away from that in order for photography to give me any joy anymore, and I'm glad I did. I only recently returned to it since I was able to purchase some new equipment and I'm finally getting back at it. It's a catalyst to experience the world from a new more intimate perspective.

      The other I've found is cooking. Making dinner is my daily me time. It's my time to disconnect from the rest of my responsibilities and focus on creating something I can later stuff my face with. I can think, reflect, and don't feel obligated to do anything else for anybody.

      @ChantalSimons, you might be interested in checking out some friends of mine Alex and Simon who just recently did a trip around the world on their motorbikes. I should try and get them on Cake :) Their site is http://www.journey-limitless.com

    • @melgeissinger thanks for your contribution. You're right, it's not just one thing that makes us happy. I second the cooking. I can totally get lost in combining spices and crestinh flavours. And you get to eat it afterwards!

      I'll check out your friends. It never ceases to amaze me how many people are out there in bikes exploring the world. And somehow we are all connected 😉

    • Simple things that make me happy, that list is not long, but fortunately easily accessible. Riding my motorbike is number one. I'm an introvert, so alone time inside my helmet experiencing the oneness of me and the bike makes me happy. The longer the ride the more I can let my thoughts roam and wander where ever they like. I solve a lot of problems this way.

      When I am not on my bike, I like to chill to music with a good set of head phones.

      My third simple thing is spending way to much time on advrider.com reading people's ride reports and interacting with a whole set of internet friends that one day I would love to meet.

    • I’ve always thought sports psychology must be SO FASCINATING!! How do you handle the pressure of the moment? Avoid burnout? Peak mentally at the right time?

      The documentary Serena has stuck with me for two years since I watched it. She nearly had the grand slam she cherished until she lost in the semis of the U.S. Open. And the devastation. She couldn’t even come out of her room for weeks. Anyone else would give anything to come that far, but for her it wasn’t enough.

    • Yes, it is incredible how they manage all the demands placed on them. And it's only recently that sports people open up about the struggles they have. It has always been see as a weakness. However, I believe that the earlier they acquire the skills to deal with tough situations (which usually requires talking about them) the better equipped they will be throughout their career and after. I haven't seen Serena's documentary yet. Thamks for bringing it to my attention.

      Also, thanks for sharing the ride report. I owe a lot of the opportunities I've had regarding adv riding to advrider.com and my extensive diary on it ;) So thanks @Chris for creating the platform for us all to connect! I hope cake can do the same thing 😍😎😉

    • I’m so glad they open up now! The world is filled with everyone’s perfect shine on Instagram. I think one of the best was superstar Kevin Love opening up about his anxiety and panic attack on live TV:

    • For me it's creating things. At the moment it's carving wooden spoons and weaving baskets/hats etc with NZ flax. in the past I've built a few ukelles, but I really just love taking one thing and turning it into something new.

    • I fear social media. I fear the work involved in doing what I do. Mostly because deep in my mind I know what it requires and it means I must face my deepest insecurities and fears.

      I have a place I go that I call my God place. I believe that at this place many of these things will be settled and revealed to me. I was a high flying person of means for most of my life I lost it all.

      My son committed suicide, I won’t even bore you with the many details that all involved pain. You have all been thru them. I had cancer twice and a MRSA infection after a couple of the surgeries that really wanted to take me out. My marriage suffered. Money was my obsession and yet since the loss of everything I/We are making nothing we are simply surviving. The stress of this was unmeasurable.

      I was offered a high 6 figure job recently. In all ways it was a dream job. In my previous line of work I always wanted more women involved. This has started and has been wonderful. Now I have an amazing woman offering me my dream job.

      Then I started thinking about my dream, I started thinking about artists. Why do they create? For the money? Or do they create because they have to. Why do young people come out with the most beautiful poetry of feeling and passion with their music? Because they have the freedom of nothing yet built to lose and the F what the world thinks of them. They just do.

      It hit me at that moment at my God place that I will no longer care about the money. It will not be my driving force. I love what I do because and even at my advanced age it is my music. It is what I love to do. I have no barriers of fear, they are all knocked down by the creation of knowing what I am doing is right.

      Cobain,

      Even if you have
      Even if you need
      I don't mean to stare
      We don't have to breed
      We could plant a house
      We could build a tree
      I don't even care
      We could have all three
      She said
      She said
      She said
      She said
      She said
      She said
      She said

      For me and my beautiful partner of 36 years the importance of doing what we do is the very essence of our love. As strange as it sounds. If I die with nothing I will have died doing what I love for the love of it and not for the money. It makes absolutely no sense and yet somehow it does.

      People ask me, why do you adventure and sleep on the ground in a tent? It makes you look small, it makes you look like you are not a large company that some might not do business with you because of it. We simply do it because we love to do it.

      And the greatest of these is love. It is important for now and the future.

      Fogelberg, part of the plan.

      Love when you can, cry when you have to, be who you must, that's a part of the plan. Await your arrival with simple 
      survival, and one day we'll all understand.

    • Geez... I don't know exactly what to say I just know I had to say something. Your response to this is one of the most beautiful and heartbreaking things I've ever read.

      I can also relate. I'll spare you the details but in the last 15 months I've experienced more loss and trauma than most people should have to in a lifetime. I lost my home in a fire and my son was born with a heart defect and has suffered through multiple surgeries and complications.

      What I can say beyond all certainty is that we learn more about ourselves and the world when we have little to nothing than we do when we are content and comfortable. And coming out of it is the most important and critical time - it's when you should figure out how to pay it forward and contribute something meaningful to the world.

      I believe you are like many other great people, you're making the world around you a better and more beautiful place. Follow your passion and the money will follow. Things usually have a way of working out.

      Best to you <3

    • I sat watching the sunset with my wife last night. A sliver of a moon appeared and then disappeared again. Mars rose in all it’s splendor and I started rattling the speeds of things moving around us to my wife. The rotation of the earth, the speed we are traveling around the sun, the speed the our galaxy is turning.

      I told her I cannot keep the speeds that things happen twirling in my head. Because it is the same types of things that we experience individually and in our daily lives. I asked her if we could remember the past and could we please just focus on the future.

      Bless you and your future. Thank you for your kind words.

    • Thanks for sharing. Bikes are my life too. The bikes though aren't just motorbikes but include a wide assortment of non powered bicycles. Something about being on a bike and out in nature that makes me happy. I'm not the adventurer you are but it can still be an adventure for me when I'm only 15 minutes ride from home. Ride on!

    You've been invited!