São Miguel, the main island of the breathtaking Azores has been my adventure this summer, traveling in circles around the island from the highest peaks to the sea and back again. It is a place of incomparable beauty and beyond that, a people who have such a good hearted caring soul you dare not ask a small question unless you’re ready for the extensive information and help they’re going to insist on giving you. While the world watches as society evolves in such a loving and open way in the US and such horrid events unfold in Tunisia, France, and Kuwait, here on the island things are as they have surely always been. Cows are grazing. Fish are jumping. Tourists taking pictures. Wash, Rinse, Repeat.
What was I talking about? Oh yeah, I recorded this podcast on one of our last nights in the Azores on a trip that has taught me a lot and inspired some future journeys in the effort to experience and learn even more.
Over the past year (maybe more) my friend Yves has been on a journey of self discovery and observing human behavior. Each time he returns to Amsterdam we talk about his observations and attempts to change what is considered “normal everyday” communication. This time, we bring microphones to one of those conversations, in attempt to bring in you the audience to discuss people, communication, needs, and yes – the meaning of life. Never thought I’d write that as a podcast title
Some ask where I’ve been, but actually I never stopped producing podcasts with Source Code Berlin and Newz of the World having lots of new content coming at you quite regularly. Meanwhile on today’s program I’m talking about the world of pocasts and how it is changing, what these changes mean for us in general. Also an announcement about upcoming projects both here on this channel and elsewhere. It’s a classic podcast update as many of us used to do in the golden days of podcasting.
On February 11th, 2015 my friend Raja Oueis passed away at the age of 27. I was lucky enough to meet Raja at hacker camp (OHM) in 2013. We spent several happy days exploring that crazy carnival of creativity, an event that we always looked back on with fondness. Not long after we were able to meet again, in Amsterdam and at the Hacker congress in Hamburg. Each in person meeting would be a joyous occasion for eating, laughing, thinking out loud and plotting future hanging out oppertunities. It seemed only right, I think for both of us, that we did meet and become friends. One of those classic cases of someone you feel like you always knew from the first moment you speak.
Sadly over the past year, as Raja fought a daunting battle against cancer, our communication would be limited to online. I convinced myself that there would be time, that despite everything, we would get to sit and talk and drink chai and discuss matters of the heart one last time. Just as it felt meant to be that we would become friends, naturally fate would allow us one more chance to talk til the wee hours of the morning. But time ran out on us. My ticket to Beirut reads March and Raja’s ticket to another dimension seems to have read February.
Thankfully, though it is hardly enough, during those happy days camping among some of the kindest and more creative people on the planet, we turned on a microphone and together with many friends and strangers, talked about what we were experiencing and why it was special to us. In this podcast I’ll revisit those moments with Raja. Though his voice is one of many in these recordings, his wonderful answers mean even more to me now. I wish we had left the recorder on for so many more hours and days. But thats not how it works, I suppose. Nevertheless, I consider myself lucky to have known him and I’m pleased to be able to share this little tiny piece of such a larger than life human being.