WELCOME TO THE CRAZY BRIT BLOG

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Hi there, before we go an further I want to say it’s not me who thinks I’m crazy it’s other people. I hope and believe that’s not bad crazy, its just that I may say some crazy things, so don’t be offended. I’ve been writing blogs for a few years now, but really just for my own amusement, and to get stuff off my chest. Only yesterday I went to group meditation and our teacher agreed with me that writing helped to clear my mind and be ready to meditate. So whilst I’ve accused myself of rambling in the past, it’s been for a good reason “MY PEACE”. First of all before we start on this journey I think it would be good to know a little about your companion, (that’s me):

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The Crazy Brit (OK the pictures a bit old, but I still have that shirt)

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And this is my only tattoo (naughty but nice)

I describe myself as a “Christian Buddhist” on Facebook (haven’t we all got Facebook nowadays). Saying this is a religion is in itself a misnomer ‘cos I don’t accept Buddhism is a religion, and I think even “The Buddha” would agree (but we can discuss that later).

I was born a Christian, so it gets a little complicated and is too long a story as to how I found Buddhism. So today is by means of my introduction and will become my one and only blog (sighs of relief). Here I will re-post not only past blogs, (that I consider worthwhile), but all of my future posts. So enjoy and smile (do you know it takes fewer muscles to smile than frown). If you don’t enjoy reading these then just stop. All I would ask from you, in return for me “opening my soul” is for you tell me what YOU think because it’s only with your comments (good or bad) that I know what everyone wants. So please fill in the comments box below and any special requests you make will be answered, but no candid nude photos of me, sorry ladies, (but there’s no point making a big thing out of a little thing like that).

Today has been a great day, and I continue to learn a lot about this magical island and my village of (No I’m not saying were I live because I don’t want this peaceful village overrun by all you cheapskates). In my previous life working in Texas, the job I had was in Marketing and Public Relations, that’s where I picked up all of the tricks of manipulation and one of the reasons I left, (perhaps I’ll write about that experience in another post). But one of the things I learned was that even though I spent a lot of $s advertising on TV, Cinema, Billboards, Radio, Facebook, Direct mail etc etc. the most effective form of advertising above all else (and with no cost) was and is word of mouth (people talking). Recently I’ve experienced the benefit of talking, apart from the people I’ve been talking to being locals, one of the other bonuses (apart from one or two guys) is that all of the these people have been attractive females, (a big bonus for the Crazy Brit). But wait guys like I said to Marica at Ta’Pinu pharmacy “why is it that all the attractive females here are all accounted for” yep sadly for me they are (I hear sniggers in the background tut tut). Hell I may be crazy, but I’ve still got some fire in my belly! even though it may need kindling. Anyway today I went to see my attractive doctor (yep she’s married), and Marica (who’s engaged) told me about a fab place in Gozo to buy my tea, and what a little gem it was. Vini-e-Capricci is in the Gozitano Agricultural village and it’s packed with wonderful goodies, chocolate, the best teas, coffee, wines and lots of other things, and all in a nice relaxing setting. You’ll see what I mean when you click the link (but please come back here)

What Marica did by telling me about Vini Capricci was not only help a poor crazy Brit, but it helped ‘Abraham Said’ develop his already thriving business (I hope I get a discount from Abraham when I next call in for this plug hint hint). I also realised that I could buy top quality products cheaper than I could anywhere (yep and you guessed it, I’d just placed an order in the UK over the internet for tea). I was so impressed with what they had in tea that I’m considering fulfilling a long held ambition of opening a tea shop. I almost opened a tea shop in Texas called The Crazy Brit (go figure). Over there I’d not only found the location, but I persuaded the mayor of the city (Keller), to do my ribbon cutting. In fact The Crazy Brit tea shop concept is still open on my Facebook, so I may use some of the ideas I came up with there for my tea shop if and when I open one here (if I can be bothered to get from behind my desk and do some real work). Unfortunately my now ex, in Texas has either kept or sold my collection of teapots and she refuses to enter into communication, although maybe if and when she reads this she will “reconsider her position” (name n shame).

But now the name for the Gozo tea shop.Scan_20140630

I actually own the domain for TeaZme (no it’s not me launching a porn site, as was suggested in the US) It represents Tea Zen and Me, and is a place where customers can go and have either tea in a formal English tea shop setting, or go into the other room and enjoy the relaxation of herbal teas in a relaxed meditation area. 

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my “special” teapot

Fortunately I did manage to bring with me one of the dozens of teapots I used to own, and that is my “special” little Chinese pot, that I only use for my special teas. I’ve plenty of other ideas and plans which I’m not telling anyone as I know with some of you lot someone will pinch ’em.So, just by talking I’ve found out a lot today.

Ray (who describes himself as a grumpy old git), has been messaging me through expat.com, and he gave me some great advice on opening a bank account. I was able to walk straight in and start the process without any problems, (and you’ll see the problems I’ve had when I re-post SMILING) which will be incorporated into this blog, along with all the others, so everyone can keep track, not that I’m expecting anyone to want to, but it helps focus me, (and I do admit I can be a bit random at times). 

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My Texas location

However, apart from the entertainment factor of my sharp, clever, but crazy wit (such modesty), I hope my posts will help anyone embarking on a new life, just as I have. I haven’t “retired” that sounds like I’ve been put out to grass. So remember, it helps to keep talking, but it also helps to keep reading and smiling. There’s a lot more writing to follow, but I’m sure you can only take so much of my ramblings at any one time. So I’ll say goodbye for now, and hope you’ll “come up and see me sometime” (as Mae West said)….PEACE & Love x 

DOWNSIZING

So I decided I needed to simplify my life, come off Facebook, close bank accounts, even reduce blogging to one a month…..EASIER SAID THAN DONE. I’ve been blogging for years under different names etc and I’d forgotten most of them NOW I’ve found some of my original blogs http://betterbusinesschanges.blogspot.com/ was possibly the start but I wouldn’t be surprised if there are more as the dates look too recent. However back to Downsizing. Yes maybe I should monetise my blog, I need PayPal for that and unfortunately we don’t seem to be getting along recently. But I’ll persevere ‘cos there’s money involved. Coming off Facebook is a dream (or in my case a nightmare). My aim is to cut free from Facebook by 2020 (20/20 vision resonates with me) BUT I need Facebook to publicise another little venture I’m thinking of starting, a tea shop like no other seen before, this place would be run a a non profit people could come to buy sell and swap things, massage, meditation, book exchange, talks by guest speakers and lots of other things (whatever the guest/customer/member wants it will do). I’ve had tea shops before and I know what will and won’t be successful and I even have the signage from my last tea shop “The Divine LOVE Tea shop” and I have a location. BUT I refuse to invest my money so I’ll have to be creative in funding. IF anyone is interested I can be contacted. Being a non profit doesn’t mean people work for free, wages and commissions would be paid but once all costs are covered any profits are donated to a local Gozo charity. Hopefully this will encourage locals to get involved (hmm easier said than done).https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MvgN5gCuLac&t=10s

So maybe you thinking (like me) hang on he’s trying to simplify his life but adding all this new STUFF. Well so long as it’s enjoyable I see no problem. My new religion:- IF it hurts no-one else you can do anything that makes you happy, no boundaries, but no-one else should be hurt or offended, (it goes without saying I won’t be running naked down the street).

Life is good ENJOY it Namaste Peace and Love.

H.S.B.C. How Stupid Bankers can Be (Part 2)

So my saga with HSBC Malta continues, I saw I could apply online for a loan I didn’t really need one but was interested if as a foreigner I would get one. My meeting today went as follows.

H Good morning Mr Chalkley…how old are you? me 68. H Oh you don’t look your age. me Thank you that’s the nicest thing anyone has said to me all week. H,Now I will go through the details….. Now I will go and check but you should know we don’t usually give loans to people over 65..

The nice lady returns, H. sorry but unless you can give us the equivalent amount as security we can’t do the loan. ME…To put it simply I’m not surprised HSBC Malta is a mess, they have always been the worst country to deal with and the most uncooperative, I’m tempted to apply again but that would just be mischievous

DEATH AND TAXES

In a favourite movie of mine Meet Joe Black, Brad Pit as death said “there are two things that are guaranteed in life Death and Taxes”.

So is the IRS more concerned with death or taxes?

I have been in a constant battle with the IRS since January 2019 the IRS is impossible to deal with, they ignore communications and instead continue to issue meaningless false notices, here’s the whole skinny: –

Until January this year I paid no tax on my small pension from the TRS (Teachers Retirement System). I pay my taxes in Malta and under the double taxation treaty this has always been the case. However, for the first time they suddenly started deducting tax at 30%, now this may not be a whole lot of money as far as most people are concerned but to me was a big slice of my US pension. Fortunately, most of my pensions come from the UK and they remain untaxed as they should be.

IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig recently said it was cheaper and easier for them to audit the poor as auditing the rich cost more in money and expertise, he asked the US government to give them more money to commence audits for the rich but for some reason the government don’t want to do that. Conflict of interest maybe? The whole scam of tax and the cost of recovering it could be settled easily with a more transparent and fair way of taxing people. Tax on what we consume, VAT, Power, etc. What is the point of trying to find hidden money, its like searching for a needle in a haystack?

Death and Taxes indeed, well my problems will not be the death of me, in fact perhaps I should send a copy of this deliberately short post to Charles Rettig (long words seem to be difficult for him.

Becoming A Buddha

When I started this blog, it evolved around The Buddha, but how many people understand Buddhism so maybe I should add my thoughts. Firstly, Buddhism is not a religion The Buddha sought the middle path and when he found it he shared it with others to save us having to go through the long journey he went through to find his enlightenment. He never expected to be worshipped as a god, he didn’t even preach that there is a god so why do we seek these spiritual experiences? There is something inherent in us that tells us there is more to life than just what we are today. Reincarnation, when we die, we don’t simply disappear whatever happens our atoms our being is reabsorbed back into the universe, I happen to believe in reincarnation but that’s for each of us to decide for ourselves.

So what about The Buddha? He was born a prince (Siddhārtha) his father wanted to protect him from the outside world and built a palace were his every need was catered for. One day Siddhārtha went outside and saw old people, illness, death etc. for the first time (can you imagine the impact that would have on you). Buddhism was founded and he is believed to have lived and taught mostly in the north-eastern part of ancient India sometime between the 6th and 4th centuries BCE.

Gautama taught a Middle Way between sensual indulgence and the severe asceticism found in the Sramana movement common in his region. He later taught throughout other regions of eastern India such as Magadha and Kosala.

Gautama is the primary figure in Buddhism. He is believed by Buddhists to be an enlightened teacher who attained full Buddhahood and shared his insights to help sentient beings end rebirth and suffering. Accounts of his life, discourses and monastic rules are believed by Buddhists to have been summarised after his death and memorized by his followers. Various collections of teachings attributed to him were passed down by oral tradition and first committed to writing about 400 years later.

So Buddhism has been around a long time, longer than Christianity, Islam and many other so called religions. We should be encouraged to know that there is this middle path, a life to enjoy, its our duty to enjoy this life and so long as we do no harm to others then anything goes. Forget the teachings we’ve been indoctrinated with throughout our lives Peace and Love will prevail. Namaste.

RISKY BUSINESS

4-30 am may does not seem to be the best time for writing a post but for some reason that happens a lot with me. Yesterday I got into something of a financial crunch and had to ask my sisters to bail me out. I don’t mind saying my eldest sister (the matriarch of the family) gave me a right hard time, I deserved it I’d taken a financial risk in my recent home move, but it paid off.

Now that produced the dream I’ve just woken up from, the many time I took risks in business and pulled off some major coups. This dream was about Frank Dee Corporation now (IF its still around) Gateway, they were then based in Hull and as a seasoned salesman I popped in by chance to their head office and asked why they weren’t stocking our household products. Frank Dee himself said that actually they thought the same thing and agreed to place a range in each of their hundreds of stores.

When I returned to my H/O my boss Barry (BMW) was amazed at this coup and wanted to come with me to the next appointment from here the dream progressed to the high I’d get from getting the big million pound order something I’ve done a few time in my life.

The fact is sometimes we have to take chances (and risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss-R.K) sitting safely on the side-lines gets us nowhere.