Momentos: March 16th – March 31st, 2017


A question I like to ask: who is your best friend, and why. The answer usually reveals a lot about a person. Asked my lady that question today, and she told me her ex-boyfriend is her best friend. I find this comforting. It’s strange to me how a couple can be so close, then break up and never speak again. Assuming there was no betrayal and you still like the person, why wouldn’t you want to keep them in your life?


Nazare, Portugal. Look it up. Home to the biggest waves in the world. Five years ago some dude broke a record surfing an eight-story screamer off these shores. And now here we are, on the beach in the dark, and I’m watching her at the edge, playing her game with the waves, half-terrified that the ocean will rise up and swallow that beautiful life and I’ll never find another like it.


Near the westernmost point of continental Europe, there’s a beach named Ursa, barely signposted and only accessible via steep hike. Some say it’s among the most beautiful beaches in the world. Maybe so, but we’re here after dark, picnicking high on the hillside, and can see only what the starlight wants to show us.


Caution to the wind, change of plan, went back there today with the big star in the sky. Several hours late dropping off the rental car and checking into our place in Lisbon but totally worth it. There’s something inside me that resists changing course, deviating from a plan, even when it makes sense… that stubborn streak that’s often a gift, but sometimes a curse. This girl helps me hone it.


She’s giddy tonight, wanting to do and have everything at once. Sunset, wine, cheese, all of it ahorita, never mind that it’s impossible. I’m cold and sluggish, would rather head home than dance in the park or go frolic in the playground. But I keep placating. And once we’re high atop the climbing frame she turns and she says, “You shouldn’t have let me come up here.”

Overlooking Praia Grande in Portugal


Launched a new funnel for 3M1K last week. Haven’t pushed any fresh traffic through but still expected to see a few sales by now. Instead… none. Frustrating, gotta admit. The course content is solid and the reviews and testimonials are overwhelmingly positive, yet people still seem hesitant to give it a shot. My marketing is falling short somehow.


Leaving Lisbon, in traffic on a bus to the airport, and a little girl in the backseat of a car next to us turns and smiles and waves. And we smile and wave back. And then she’s gone. And that’s most likely the only time our paths will ever cross, the only moment we’ll ever share in our long lives on this small rock in a vast universe. It was nice.


Breakfast on the beach in Barcelona, with a supermarket creation we decide to call “homeless porridge.” Then it’s off around town on a rented scooter to visit a few of Gaudí’s creations. A dance at the fountain, a couple of casas, the Pedrera and the park. We’ll get to la Sagrada mañana.


When we first met, I wasn’t sure how the money issue would play out, if she’d expect me to pay for everything, which I simply can’t afford to do. But it’s been fine. I earn more than her, so I’m happy to pay more and treat her regularly, but she also offers to pay occasionally and sometimes I even ask her to treat me. We communicate well, and that makes everything easier.


Girona. Floating up and down medieval streets and steps and steeples, stopping for jamón and queso, later coffee with a buttered croissant and a caramel slice. It’s the twelfth and final day of this jaunt, a dozen consecutive days together. Remarkable really that we’re still crazy about each other. Even more so now, because we’ve both seen the moods and experienced the annoyances and still the warm fuzzy feels.

Messing around at the castelo in Lisbon


Like a zombie at the airport, running on less than four hours of sleep, one of those on a bus. Straight to the nap room at the lounge and all laid out for a much-needed 90-minute siesta, then a feast of sandwiches and tomato juice. Rolling towards B51 a little later with Bruce in my ears and a spring in my step, smiling at myself and all the other beautiful people.


Gran Canaria again, at the coworking wading through feedback and ideas for 3M1K, trying to figure out next steps. One thing is clear: I need to get back to writing articles and making videos regularly. That was mainly how I built a following my first few years, and growth has stagnated since I quit the twice-weekly schedule.


Bit of a weird living situation at the moment. Sharing a small apartment with a lady and two boys with severe cerebral palsy. At least I think that’s what they have. And part of me is curious and wants to sit down and talk to the lady in my unfluent Spanish and learn more about their condition, but a bigger part of me isn’t willing to put forth the effort. So I keep to myself, pleasant and polite but only speaking when spoken to.


Ninety-minute yoga class on the beach this eve, making the most of the perfect weather and extended tardes. I love an active city, and Las Palmas is definitely that. From my side crane I see people swimming, boating and kayaking in the water, others running and playing volleyball in the sand.


Two days ago I went to an Authentic Relating Games thingy, and one of the games they had us play was to stand up in front of everybody and say something you were a little uncomfortable admitting, following it with the question, “Anyone else?” So… today I felt very sluggish and introverted and spent all afternoon and evening in bed, avoiding human interaction and binge-watching Netflix. Anyone else?


Chatting with my lady. She’s back in Moscow. I’ve been figuring out the visa stuff, should be headed her way at the end of April for a 30-day visit, and we’ll likely take a quick trip to Crimea while I’m there. After that, thinking maybe Japan, Amsterdam, London. We’ll see. The visa stuff makes it complicated, but we’ll figure it out.

Cascada Monumental in Barcelona

In the comments below, let me know which of the above Momentos is your favorite. Which can you relate to?

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  1. Number 20!! On so many levels! I would like to welcome you the phantasmagoria that is relationships with ladies. Get prepared for more of that shit. Lots more. And you so unconpromising all of these years. But to be fair she does sound worth it. And I’m jealous as I mend my broken wings.

  2. 22. All day we cross paths with strangers. It is when we share a smile that the intersection of lives occurs. Then as quickly as the encounter happened, the other life retreats, we realize the moment, sigh, and our smile is fueled for a few more minutes.

  3. 21. I get your marketing and I always think “It’s not right for me right now” and it is nice to know it is always available should I think I’m ready.

  4. 16 “Assuming there was no betrayal and you still like the person, why wouldn’t you want to keep them in your life?”

    It’s similar to how any friendship ends. I don’t particularly dislike anybody who I was close to (platonic or romantic) but it’s normal for people to drift apart.

    1. Yeah, drifting apart is normal. But many couples become complete strangers after breaking up, not staying in touch at all, never meeting up for a coffee or anything. I find that very odd. Like they never had any kind of relationship in the first place.

  5. When you’ve had intense romantic/sexual feelings for someone and been in a relationship with them, there’s always a chance you may act on them again. But you broke up for a reason and it’s not worth going through all that a second time. In my case anyway, that’s why I stay away from my exes 🙂

  6. #1

    Niall, I have been reading your blog for more than 5 years and don’t know who your best friend is and why 🙂

  7. Number 24: Is this not a slippery slope into a Thai/Russian bride scenario?

    I recall you snickering at those old men in Thailand who were clearly being taken to the proverbial cleaners.

    Relationships can be bubble territories.

    1. I was watching out for that and am satisfied that she’s not that kind of person. And if she was, she could do a hell of a lot better than me. I’m not exactly loaded. Wouldn’t be hard for a girl as beautiful as her to find a mega-rich sugar daddy if that’s what she was after.

  8. Glenn in NH USA

    #16 to start; my wife of 30+ years has divorced me. I made the mistake of not truly treasuring her, i want so bad to have a do-over and win her back! I am treating her as she sb treated! Where their is life, there is hope! She is absolutely the BEST person i have ever met! Yet she is moving on as my youngest is marrying her boyfriend this upcoming June!
    I don’t see it being easy for me. As i am in my late 50s, disabled due to several strokes that has impacted my left side.
    #21 I can relate. I did exactly what im suggested NOT to do!I had a thought for how i could create a business and i went for it against my wife’s wishes putting a couple thousand into it all part-time and it fell on its face as i cant sell any of it! Do i give it up or give it one more try as a friend of mine said to me just today that she wants to discuss with her sister about the samples i have in stock? or just bail out and move on?
    #22 Perfect! I feel like that exactly every day. i give everyone i meet a sincere smile so it never ceases to brighten their day, as they smile in reply!
    #28 I have a TBI (traumatic brain injury) my left side is shit, yet my brain is still working. i say this because i joined a center for other members with TBIs. And a lot of my fellow members are significantly impaired with their speach, etc. Dont miss out on the opportunity to meet some really great people because they dont look like you! Where would you be if you didnt learn their language?
    Forever Forward MY FRIEND!

  9. 31. Crimea. My occupied motherland where I was born and lived my childhood and where I can’t live now. But Russian girl can. I just read this and I hate the world right now, it’s a mean place. I wan’t to leave a sincere comment but that would be sad, stupid, and wrong comment and wrong, on so many levels. Even now between the words or even the letters I write desperate, angry, desperate again, stupid, sad, condescending comments in my head but think better about typing these comments here.

    Damn, that hit surprisingly hard. I thought I came to peace with all this stuff. Maybe I shouldn’t even post this comment, I don’t know.

    It’s not politics, it’s people. But you’re people too. And the world is a mean, mean place (and great and wonderful and awesome, and kind place too).
    Anyway, enjoy your trip, Crimea is nice place, or, let’s say it has a very nice side and I hope you’ll see it. That’s sincere comment too.

    1. Hey Sergy. Man, that really sucks, not being able to go live in your homeland if you want to. I don’t keep up with news or politics so I’m not even familiar with what exactly happened with Crimea but I will try learn about it before I go and while I’m there.

      Curious though, how do you feel about people going there for tourism? Would you rather people avoided it?

      1. Hey Niall, I was regretting that comment maybe in an hour or two after posting it, sorry. It just hit me hard when I read it and I wasn’t controlling myself much.

        I have a lot of friends and relatives there and they have a lot of different opinions on what happened and what’s going on. So it’s not going to be easy to understand what exactly happened there=) But basically one country took piece of another country. I am Ukrainian, but I don’t really like Ukraine (I like some parts of it, I definitely not patriotic), and I really don’t like Russia (though I am Russian-speaking and ethnically Russian). And I didn’t like living in Crimea too. That’s why I moved to Kiev. I was planning to go back to Crimea in 2014, but this annexation happened, and all other stuff in Ukraine and I was shocked for couple years – couldn’t believe that what happened did happen. Now I just want to get out of Ukraine to some other country, to cut the ties, but in moments like when I’ve read your moment about Crimea I see that those ties are still there, sadly. It’s like phantom pain. But I am rambling there.

        For tourism, I think that it should be limited and that Russia should not benefit from the peninsula economically and should be forced economically to return the Crimea back to Ukraine. I see no point (or possibility) of returning it militarily, indeed. I am sure that forgiving that land grab to Russia will cost a lot to the world in the long term. But that’s generally. Don’t mind my opinion. Personally, I am curious if you gonna like it there. Will wait for new moments=)

        1. No need to apologize, Sergy. I thought your original comment was honest, heartfelt, and respectful, and I appreciate you sharing.

          I will be sure to let you know my thoughts on Crimea once I get to experience it for myself. All the best.

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