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Jennifer Garner Slams Break-Up Rumors

Posted by Kitara Julian On 7:22 PM 0 comments
Jennifer Garner publicist reportedly said that the rumor that she and husband Ben Affleck were breaking up is "100% completely fabricated." It was recently reported that the couple were splitting because they are always photographed spending time with their daughter separately leading to speculation that their three-year marriage is in trouble. Garner’s rep reportedly said of the rumors, "There is not one ounce of truth to it."

Jennifer Garner, 36, and Affleck, 35, met in 2003 on the set of their hit movie Daredevil. At the time she was married to actor Scott Foley and Affleck was dating singer Jennifer Lopez. Garner and Foley split in April 2003 and it was rumored that she had had an affair with Affleck. The rumor was never confirmed. She began dating her Alias co-star Michael Vartan, but they called it quits in March 2004. Seven months later she and Affleck began dating.

The couple married in June 2005 and their daughter Violet Anne was born six months later. Garner said in an interview last year, "I don’t know what makes [the relationship] work. But it does. One thing that makes it not not work is that we’re both pretty nice." She also said, "[Ben] is not someone who’s ever going to blow up on anyone. What I mean is, if he’s ever angry with me, he doesn’t act out on it in a weird way or yell at me. And I am the same. So we can handle conflict in a very loving and adult way."

We’ve been asked our thoughts about the Costa Concordia situation.  It is a tragedy. Having been at least 30 times on ocean liners and cruise ships (and not including my days with Holland America Line as a First Class steward in the late 1940’s), I guess people are curious because of our experience on the 7 seas.
I’ve been in two shipwrecks.  One, in April 1961, aboard a 60 foot sloop en route to Greece from the island of Ibiza. We were shipwrecked off the coast of Sicily in the sirocco winds. The other, aboard the legendary “Cristobol Carrier” en route from Guayaquil, Ecuador to the Galapagos in May 1969. That shipwreck occurred in the early hours of the morning. The captain was drunk and no one was on the bridge. But we’ve had no problems or mishaps aboard all the other ships.   We still think they’re safe, if you can use that word in general when it concerns travel.
Speaking of the seas and sailing, how about the 16-year old girl from Holland?  Laura Dekker is almost at the end of a solo circumnavigation around the world. Here is the link to her official site. She’s due to arrive back tomorrow on the island of St. Maarten, from where she departed January 20, 2011. You’d think she’d be getting a hero’s welcome in Holland?  Well, yes, everyone except the Government that is.  The Minister of Education claims she did not continue her school education since she took off in the middle of a school season. They may punish her. So, guess, what?  The intrepid Laura Dekker says, “If that’s the case, I will not return to Holland.” Challenging the seven seas, solo, what she has done, amounts to a true education. Speaking for myself, my school education ended when I was 10, due to the outbreak of WWII. Granted she will not get a diploma, neither did I, yet I speak six languages and have been around the world three times.  Not bad for someone with no “education”. Goes to show you how seriously the Netherlands Government considers completion of one’s education. To Laura, we say "Yes, well done!  Bravo!  Chapeau!

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A rare heavy snowfall

Posted by Kitara Julian On 4:59 PM 0 comments
Our visiting sea lion (see two posts below) hasn't appeared for awhile. Must have anticipated the Arctic airflow. By now maybe he's back in balmy Monterey, to play.  Victoria has been pummelled by a good layer of snow. Thermometer outside shows -9C.  Usually we have one or two light days of snow, mostly the wet kind mixed with a sprinke of rain. However, one crocus has presented itself on the front lawn, saying "Here I am, snow or no snow!"  Is Nature not amazing?

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Year of the Water Dragon

Posted by Kitara Julian On 4:45 PM 0 comments
Soon we’re entering another “New Year”, this time it will be Year of the Water Dragon, celebrated in the Orient and by immigrants settled on these shores. 

Twelve years ago, we were on a millennium world voyage aboard “Ocean Explorer I” where I conducted a floating art class and was resident guest artist.  One of the many ports of call was Bali, Indonesia.  There, we acquired this masterful woodcarving of a dragon, since 2000  was also Year of the Dragon.  It is very small, only 14 cm high and 7 cm wide. For 12 years we’ve had it on display at our various abodes. Back in 2000 when we purchased the carving, I said  that should I still be alive in the year 2012, we’d mark the occasion by honouring the humble woodcarver who created this striking piece. 

Look at the intricate carving, the detail, the teeth - -  all carved from  one piece of wood.  Bravo! Over the past 12 years technology jumped by leaps and bounds. Little did we know twelve years later that Natasha could take a picture with her mobile phone and post it on a blog.   Amazing technology.   (The photo concept was mine.)   Twelve years onward to the next Dragon year (2024) would make me 95 years of age, so it’s realistic to say I’ll not be here any longer on spaceship Ocean Earth.   Wishing you all a healthy New Year.

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In our neighbourhood by the sea

Posted by Kitara Julian On 9:59 AM 0 comments
From balmy and lush Hawaii, home again to moist, cool and sometimes foggy climes - - - trademarks of Victoria winters.   This does not seem to bother the wildlife, especially Hummingbirds.  And the New Year brought a new (for us) visitor to our shore off Dallas Road.  We spotted a large Sea Lion snoozing on a rock just 75 metres from our door.  The last day or so she’s made it her home.   Since we don’t see them often out of the water at this time of year, the lyrics about “Monterey, where the seals and mantas play” came to mind. Sometimes an Eagle settles down to rest awhile, along with a few of those Hummingbirds doing their acrobatic manoeuvres, accompanied by an energy that seems perpetual.  We’re told they need to take in huge amounts of nectar to offset all this use of energy.  Meanwhile let’s see if our lone Sea Lion is still there tomorrow. In the meanwhile here is a photo.

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It has been quite awhile since our last post.  With all the worldly goings-on, sometimes one wishes to be silent, amidst all the noise and drama.  Just returned from a memorable, "free Vitamin D" sailing, circumnavigating the Hawaiian islands.  Appreciate having the good health in order to do so.  Highlights were:

  • the Waimea Canyon, Kaui
  • Hamela'uma'u crater with a huge, billowing plume of sulphur dioxide, Big Island
  • an amazing Banyan Tree in Lahani, Maui - at first it looks like a dozen trees, but then we discovered everything is an offshoot from one, main tree
  • ten days of fresh sea-air
  • seasonal decorations aboard ship, including a complete gingerbread village.

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