23rd March 2018: I turned 30! That was exciting. How do I feel? Great! I can’t believe how ancient I once felt 30-year-olds were. But now I’m here, I still just feel like me.

Here’s a snap of Erin and I on the big day at the Great Barrier Reef:

Arthur and Erin on the Great Barrier Reef

Was it the most beautiful reef I’d ever seen? No. But then we only saw a fraction of its 2,300 km. What I did take away was the scale. Much of the coral wall we explored (over 12 dives in 4 days) was 30 – 40m high (about the same as a 10 storey building). It’s hard to picture how enormous and diverse this habitat is. And how sad it is to know how much of it is disappearing each year.

Right now, Erin and I are in Canggu, Bali. Easily one of my favourite spots in the world. The locals are kind, honest and welcoming. The food is better than most major cities, with a huge selection of vegetarian and vegan options. The surf (especially for beginners and intermediates) is unbeatable. The weather is awesome. The expats are positive, curious and following their passions. And the cost? Divide London by 10 to 20 and you start getting close.

The verdict? We planned to stay here 3 months but we’re already discussing 3 years.

Faster To Master-wise I’m focussing on increasing my output of articles and crunches. The more I write, the more I realise how much I still have to learn about writing. It’s a craft that I could (and am excited) to keep mastering for decades.

I’ve also tentatively decided to explore “Learning and Memory” as a topic for my first book. I’ll be testing topics and ideas here over the next 6 months first so expect to see a few more crunches in that genre. I’ll be breaking those up with articles that interest me and a few books on writing, as well as more key-stone texts on self-help and philosophy.

Otherwise, Erin and I are keeping busy with CrossFit (a new obsession and the best workout I’ve had in 10 years), ultimate frisbee, surfing, meditation and making new friends. I’m still working on my flashcards and have restarted weekly iTalki lessons in Mandarin and German.

That’s all for now. Every day I wake up and feel grateful for the relative peace, freedom and plenty an unprecedented number of us enjoy in the world. One day people will look back on this era of humanity as a golden age.

Next update in May, until then, good luck, be safe and go well! Arthur