There’s no such thing as bad weather. There’s only bad gear.

Indoors, there’s also “no such thing as information-overload, there is just filter failure.” So as we march into the most information-overloaded season of them all, let us not go unarmed.


Active avoidance of useless information means being fully aware that you’re blocking huge gobs of internet reality and doing it to save yourself. This has now grown to be a core competence for digital citizens and it’s called Critical Ignoring.  It starts with the idea that “Low-quality and misleading information online can hijack people’s attention, often by evoking curiosity, outrage, or anger.” So don’t let yourself be snowed this winter.




1. What beats comfort food? Nothing. Watch Florence Pugh devour 11 British dishes, and here’s to the best mashed potatoes you’ll ever make.


2. The Good Life is changing You don’t need a lot of money, a backstage pass, or even a camper van. What you need is a legacy city.


3. “…and that’s how I got here.” The best proof that nothing beats a great story especially at a stressful time.


4. Beware the perfect gentleman. It’s not they who are the con men, at least not always. It’s the people who impersonate perfect gentlemen.


5. Let the app do the work for you. There’s an app that automatically counts things that come in large numbers– from pipes on a truck and cows in a field, to pills, pallets, rivets and bar codes.


6. Sometimes you can just be too keen. I’m in favour of medically-assisted dying. But I know some people aren’t, and especially the new rules around mental illness being a sole criterion for ending your life. So while it’s much better bringing MAiD out of the closet and talking about it, it’s a bit too soon and too much to embrace commercials for it when you go to buy your winter wardrobe.


7. The broccoli tree. This isn’t like the Spaghetti Tree. It’s a parable of how online life can overtake real life and smudge them both.


8. Building fast and slow. If you never really compared (or contrasted) the Empire State Building and the World Trade Center, this will get you thinking about how things really get built.


9. How did cottagecore grow so popular?But first, what iscottagecore? It’s “images of nostalgic countryside scenes and peasant dresses with eyelet lace”.


You can build your new home as cottagecore or even dress your new self as cottagecorps. Little wonder it’s the most popular design trend in America.


10. All 9 Beethoven Symphonies.One a dayfrom yesterday to Dec. 17, Beethoven’s birthday. Conducted by the peerless Gustavo Dudamel, free and online.


11. Two quirky music videos.One, with the Royal Philharmonicplaying household appliances, and two, NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert with British cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason.


Plus a great TVO documentary on Canadian architect Carlos Ott on Building Bastille, the Paris opera house.





It’s only going to get colder and snowier. Time to engineer your escape.


If you know about our trips, they don’t involve lying on a beach for a week, but doing adventurous things with fascinating people.


So from January 22 – 29, 2023, we’ll be aboard the 100-guest National Geographic Quest with 50 of our friends as it sails through the Panama Canal and up the west coast of Costa Rica.



This is with Lindblad Expeditions and we’ve been on two of their luxury adventure cruises before, to Antarctica and the Spanish-Portuguese coast. On board and on shore, we were in the hands of the most experienced experts and crew on earth. One evening during “Recap” with cocktails and appetizers in hand, we saw “The Monster of the Day” that our expedition divers filmed from the ocean floor. Oh, and it’s one thing to kayak on Georgian Bay; it’s another to kayak on the Antarctic Ocean. For one, it’s safer in the Antarctic because the Lindblad people are so on top of it.


All to say, we’ve come to expect the best in comfort, dining, adventure and safety from Lindblad, a view confirmed by Condé Nast Traveler, who last year declared them to be the #1 Small Ship Cruise Line in the world.


Our 8-day trip starts when we land in Panama City, Panama, and ends in San José, Costa Rica. The cost is from $6,479 USD per person, depending on what level of cabin you choose (this includes a special savings for our group of 5% off the standard rates). Airfare, of course, is extra.


So – a good deal on a great break in a hot place with nice people in the hands of the best in the business. As founder Sven Lindblad said: “Think of us as a conduit to exhilaration.”


You may already know RamsayTravels does group travel for people who don’t do group travel. People like you. So as we all sit and freeze this winter, think about what you could be doing, and where you’d like to be (and with whom) in January and join us.


So please spend some time with the links above. Then, if you like what you see but you have questions, please e-mail or call me at, or 416-822-3452.


If you’re planning on joining please act soon. And if you want more information, here’s the webinar we hosted recently that will give you more details of the trip. To book your cabin, please call the Lindblad folks directly at1-888-773-9007 or email them at


One last thought: now that we can lift our heads on a different world, isn’t it time to plan what you may have promised yourself you’d do?


If not now, when?


If not you and your family, who?

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1 thought on “There’s no such thing as bad weather. There’s only bad gear.”

  1. I have just watched the magnificent documentary on the Bastille Opera House and it’s architect, Carlos Ott. Al and I were friends with Carlos, and I wrote a cheeky story on him in enRoute magazine. Do not miss watching this film, it is inspirational. It motivated me, in these difficult times, to feel once again, that everything is possible.
    Sara Waxman

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