A Blog by Lunebase
Feel Good Story

83 year-old Japanese man becomes oldest to sail solo across Pacific

Ever feel like you want to pack everything up, turn off your phone and get out of civilisation for a while?

The ultimate solitude is a dream for many. But 83 year-old Kenichi Horie achieved that and more recently. Known as Japan’s most famous yachtsman, Horie recently made it to Japan after setting sail from California – entirely on his own.

After being at sea for more than two months, Horie has become the oldest person in the world to sail across the Pacific entirely on his own.

Though some people around Horie had concerns about the trip due to his age, he seemed confident before he departed: “I’m always fine, always in shape … No overeating, no over-drinking.”

“I had the confidence that I would make it – I just wanted to take on the challenge”.

Horie later want on to say that completing the solo sail was one of his life goals, and urged others to follow suit: “Don’t let your dreams just stay as dreams. Have a goal and work towards achieving this and a beautiful life awaits.” We should all heed Kenichi’s words.

Feel Good Story

Judo player who lost leg achieves black belt

Ten years ago, Aaron Hawkins, aged just 18, was caught in a motorbike crash that left him with broken bones below the knee.

Doctors did their best to try and save his leg, but eventually Aaron had to have it amputated and now wears a prosthetic leg.

​​Now, ten years later, Aaron has credited the sport of judo with forcing him to “look at the positives” in life. And a lot of positives there are – as Aaron has now gone on to achieve his black belt.

Aaron’s father, Graeme Hawkins, said: “Words don’t explain how proud I am of Aaron. He’s a superstar.”

“It just proves if you put your mind to something and you want to do it, you can do it, he’s proved that.”​​​​

It’s true, Aaron is an inspiration. Hold on while I Google my nearest judo training school…

Feel Good Story

Anonymous man wins 200 million Euros in lottery, donates almost all of it to saving the Earth

Imagine you are a newly appointed town mayor in the 1920s. You’re keen to bring change to the community and make a positive impact. You pull up your suspenders, pick out your favourite hat, and take to the streets. Soon you find a fence, built across a path that you know is popular amongst the townsfolk.

A quick-thinking mayor might see the fence and say, “I don’t see the use of this. Let’s tear it down so that it no longer gets in people’s way”. To which a more reasoned and forward-thinking mayor might say, “I don’t see the use of this. However, just because I don’t see the use of this, doesn’t mean the fence has no use to somebody. I can’t reasonably destroy this fence without knowing the reasons why it was built.”

I stumbled across the work of GK Chesterton from his 1929 book The Thing. It contains the principle commonly known as Chesterton’s Fence, something that is within the Wikipedia editing community even today.

The logic states that until we establish the reason why something was created in the first place, we have no business destorying it. The reason may be no longer relevant, or even valuable; we just need to be aware of what the reason is. And this applies whether we’re debating to keep a fence, a sentence on Wikipedia, or a big decision that needs to be made.

When we’re making big decisions, we ought to be aware that some choices can have long lasting effects. Like where to send your child to school, whether to take that new job, who you really want in your circle of close friends, or how to react to that comment from your mother-in-law.

It goes without saying that in situations like these that we should take on more active and reflective thinking processes before hastily making decisions. Second-order thinking is the practice of not just considering the consequences of our decisions, but also the consequences of those consequences – just like an expert chess player might be thinking many moves ahead when deciding which piece to move next.

Everyone can manage first-order thinking, which is just considering the immediate anticipated result of an action. It’s simple and quick, usually requiring little effort. By comparison, second-order thinking is more complex and time-consuming. The fact that it is difficult and unusual is what makes the ability to do it such a powerful advantage.

Otherwise, we may end up with unintended consequences: second- and third-order effects we don’t want, spreading like ripples on a pond and causing damage for years. Like Chesterton’s Fence, we ought to establish the reason behind decision-making – and the future effects of our decisions – before we act.

Feel Good Story

Love on the front line: Ukrainian couple tie the knot in wartime ceremony

Walking down the aisle is a moment that everyone wants to savour. You might take it slow to let the magical moment sink in, or it could be a case of nerves setting in.

When the Russian invasion of Ukraine began last month, Lesia Ivashchenko left her job to join territorial defence forces and defend her district on the outskirts of Kyiv.

Having not seen her partner, Valerii Fylymonov, since the beginning of the Russian invasion, the pair knew that their reunion was going to be a special one, and decided to get married on the front line on Sunday 6 March.

It turned out that their squad members in the force were behind them, and even the commanders contributed to organising a ceremony that was attended by the mayor of Kyiv, Vitali Klitschko, and his world-renowned boxer brother Wladimir Klitschko. Taras Kompanichenko, a well-known Ukrainian artist who volunteers in the territorial defence force, played music at the wedding.

“We decided who knows what will happen tomorrow,” said Lesia. “We should get married in front of the state, in front of God.”

What a brilliant outlook on life to have in the face of adversity.

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Feel Good Story

Shall we take it slow and steady? Bride and groom choose pet tortoise to be their ringbearer

Walking down the aisle is a moment that everyone wants to savour. You might take it slow to let the magical moment sink in, or it could be a case of nerves setting in.

One couple in Arizona found their walk down the aisle to be the slowest in the world after choosing their pet tortoise Tom Shelleck to be their ringbearer.

Exotic animal veterinarians Ericka and Jay Johnson first met while surveying wild tortoises 20 years ago, and so felt it only right that the include their beloved pet Tom as part of the celebrations. They attached a floral basket to his shell, with their wedding rings placed inside.

To ensure that Tom didn’t go off-track, Ericka and Jay had the ingenious idea of lining the aisle with strawberries so he could find his way to the altar.

The couple estimate it took Tom around 3 minutes to make the walk down the aisle. Not bad at all… he must have been hungry 🍓

Wellbeing Champions Newsletter

Monthly collection of news, wellbeing updates, lifestyle tips, and feel-good stories - delivered right to your inbox every third Thursday.

☕ Five-minute round-up. 🤐 No-spam ever. 👋 Unsubscribe at any time.
Privacy policy for the fellow GDPR nerds 🤓

Feel Good Story

Dog saves sleeping owners from carbon monoxide poisoning

The saying “dogs are man’s best friend” never becomes less true.

When Brad Harbert of Iowa went to bed on the night of December 13th, he didn’t expect his faithful Roxy to be jumping on top of him mere hours later.

It turns out that even though Brad hadn’t heard the faint beeps of his carbon monoxide detector, Roxy had – and was keen to warn Brad and the rest of his family.

Luckily, Brad and Roxy were able to help the rest of the family spring into action and call the fire department before any harm was caused.

Officials with Brad’s energy company confirmed that the odorless carbon monoxide was leaking out of the family’s electric and gas fireplace.

According to the NHS, each year there are around 60 deaths from accidental carbon monoxide poisoning in England and Wales.

Now might be a good time to check your detector – or at least look into getting your very own Roxy 🐶

Wellbeing Champions Newsletter

Monthly collection of news, wellbeing updates, lifestyle tips, and feel-good stories - delivered right to your inbox every third Thursday.

☕ Five-minute round-up. 🤐 No-spam ever. 👋 Unsubscribe at any time.
Privacy policy for the fellow GDPR nerds 🤓