on May.10, 2012, under walk softly and carry a big stick
Last week, I got to meet and enjoy my love of cigars with arguably the most famous football player of all time, and one of the most iconic sports figures in history – Diego Maradona.
Maradona is the coach of Al Wasl football club in Dubai.
Naseba is expanding a partnership with Al Wasl and I was invited to the club to meet the team, the players and Maradona.
We were briefed before my meeting how Maradona doesn’t like people to touch him, so I was asked not to hug him; and not to fawn all over him.
I laughed with the marketing director of the club and explained that I am not a touchy feely guy so this wouldn’t be a problem.
After getting a great tour of all the facilities, and meeting and taking pictures with the team, we met Maradona and his translator.
This football hero is a super nice guy.
He immediately thanked me for our support, saying “naseba” in his spainish way.
I read that he likes cigars so I gave him a box of my favourite cigar – cohiba siglo V.
He gave me a big bear hug laughing as he thanked me.
Later we were told this maradona bear hug shows how much he genuinely appreciated the cigars.
We took pictures together as we enjoyed the cigars and small talked for a fairly long time.
Diego is a very down to earth, lovable man … who is a God like figure to many people in the world, especially to people in Argentina.
He is also a great example of a man who has fallen down the mountain a couple times on his own climb, but instead of feeling sorry for himself, he got back up and kept climbing.
It is an honour to meet Diego Maradona and have the opportunity to work with Al Wasl football club.
on Jan.25, 2011, under my travels
For my 40th birthday present, Sophie surprised me with a 9 day trip to Cuba.
Cuba is the 90th country I have visited, and easily my favorite trip.
Cuban’s are friendly, and I appreciate that socialism has dulled their enthusiasm for commerce, thus most people on the streets did not try to hustle or sell me anything.
Although I am American, Sophie (easily) got my visa from the Cuban embassy in Qatar. (many people assume American’s can’t travel to Cuba, but we can – just not from America)
On Christmas afternoon, we flew Emirates from Dubai to Paris, spent a great night enjoying Paris, and then we flew an easy 11 hours on Air France from Paris to Havana.
We arrived to Havana at 9pm on December 26th.
Our journey through baggage claim and immigrations was remarkably, smooth and easy.
However, as most restaurants, cafes, stores and merchants do not accept credit cards in Cuba, we had to wait in a long line to change our euro into Cuban pesos.
Around midnight ….we were out of the airport.
Sophie wanted me to experience Cuba to the fullest, so she organized the first night for us to stay in a local Cuban family’s home in Vinales, the area of Cuba where the best coffee and tobacco is grown.
2 hour drive later, we arrived to “Rolando’s house.”
Although the family spoke no English, we enjoyed a late meal of fresh wild pig (which they said was caught and killed in the morning), black beans & rice as well as other Cuban dishes.
Dinner was adventurous, and the food was excellent.
Sophie and I slept in Rolando’s guest room, a tiny room with just a queen sized bed – very comfortable, and we both fell asleep instantly (around 2:30am).
I slept great… until we were awoken by a rooster at 5:30am and then another rooster … suddenly – it seemed like 20+ rooster’s were making noise.
The house shared a common large yard with four other houses – there were several cages of cock’s which were being raised to fight.
There was also two cages with hens, which provide Rolando and the other 4 families fresh eggs.
As I was enjoying my walk through the cages of hens and cocks, a man with a large machete walked in front of me … up to a cage with a large pig in it ….
The man made a motion with his thumb across his throat and smiled as he walked up to the large pig.
I went for a long walk around the streets of Vinales – of course, I was the only big white guy strolling around ….
I told everyone who asked that I was from America – everyone was warm and friendly.
It is impressive how clean, nearly spotless are the streets of Cuba … and I noticed throughout the trip several men and women sweeping the gutters and streets.
Sophie and I ate breakfast on Rolando’s patio.
After breakfast, I sat in a rocking chair on the back porch and smoked my first cigar of the trip.
The highlight of the morning was the strong Cuban coffee.
At 9:00, Rolando’s 23 year old son (who spoke French, but no English) took us on a 10 mile hike from his house into the farm land – we walked 10 miles through tobacco fields, coffee fields; we saw several wild pigs and many farmers in the various fields.
We met one farmer who they told us was 80 years old and smokes 20+ cigars a day — the man looked in his late 60′s.
I didn’t see another tourist the entire walk.
We walked through coffee fields.
After an hour of walking, we reached a tobacco farm.
As we walked into the small farm house, a woman was in the process of roasting coffee.
We got to enjoy her very strong coffee.
She also made me a cigar.
My cigar was enjoyable. I bought 12 cigars at this farm – these cigars are called “peasant cigars” because they are rolled by the farmers themselves – I paid 10 US$ for 12 cigars (I regret I did not buy more)
The coffee was great!
She also showed us the process of drying tobacco.
After too much coffee, we walked through several other tobacco farms to the most prestigious farm … again, the owner of the farm rolled a cigar for me.
I bought 24 cigars from him. (the woman’s cigar was better)
Incredible day; incredible experience.
In the late afternoon, our driver who is named “Chocolate” picked us up and drove us to a dock, where we took a boat to a tiny island …
Chocolate spoke fluent French, but no English. He explained he is called “chocolate” because “he is seriously, black.”
We took a small boat to an island of only 30 people. It was gorgeous, but windy and cold.
At night, Sophie and I watched Spanish ESPN and had our first mojito.
I don’t drink alcohol (except for wine) so that mojito was the first one I tried in my life.
I should mention that there was no hot water at either Rolando’s house nor at the beach house we stayed … but it didn’t matter.
I like cold showers.
We enjoyed a couple days walking around the island, smoking cigars and relaxing … but I was looking fwd to getting to Havana.
Cuba, esp. Havana is unlike any of the 90 countries I have visited…
Old cars from the 1950s are every where.
We stayed at a modern hotel, the Parque Central which is right in the center of Havana, and very convenient because we could walk every where.
The buildings in Havana are old and dilapitated, but very charming.
There is a Casa del Habana in the hotel lobby … I bought a box of Romeo and Juliet “wide Churchills and a box of Cohiba “siglo V” to enjoy throughout the trip.
The Partagas Factory is less than 5 minute walk from the hotel.
To ensure the cigars are not fake, tourists are advised to buy cigars ONLY in Casa del Habana shops.
One of the biggest myths in the world has to be that cigars in Cuba are cheap …
From my experience, Cuban cigars at the Beirut Airport duty free are the cheapest in the world.
The cigar’s in Cuba are about the same price as the duty free at the Dubai airport — depending on the exchange rate – maybe even more expensive.
But it didn’t matter. I was in Cuba.
Nic and Jenny flew in from Toronto and joined us in Havana.
Even sweet, gorgeous women from Canada enjoy cigars in Cuba!
The 4 of us spent several days and nights walking around Havana, smoking cigars and drinking mojito’s/daiquiris at several of the bars – the most famous being “La Floridita,” made famous by Ernest Hemingway.
You know you have made it in this lifetime when your favorite bar puts a life size bronze statue of you standing where you stood in the bar – like there is of Hemingway at the La Floridita.
Throughout the trip, we walked all around Havana, even late at night.
We never once felt in danger. The people are poor, but very friendly.
One morning, I rented a car … and the four of us drove around Havana in a 1963 convertible Impala … 3 hours was more than enough.
I smoked a cigar as often as I wanted.
Cuba is probably the only country in the world where you see people smoking cigars in a crowded elevator as if its normal.
We went to “Tropicana” for New Year’s eve and enjoyed the show and brilliant ambiance.
Tropicana is consider the most famous club in Cuba – before the embargo, it was one of the most famous clubs in the world.
Nic and Jenny left the day after new year’s, but Sophie and I spent another 4 days in Havana relaxing, smoking cigars and drinking daiquiris and mojito’s .
We went to every famous bar listed in the guide book to taste and judge who made the best mojito or daiquiris – we both agreed, La Floridita was the best – with the best ambiance.
Over the trip, I enjoyed easily, 5-8 cigars a day.
Cuba and its cigar, mojito/daiquiri culture is beyond words …
I understand why Hemingway lived in Cuba for 20 years…. before he lost his house when America set up the embargo, and he was forced to leave.
In Havana, there is a palpable passion for life.
Cuban’s don’t seem to be concerned with what kind of car they drive, or the size of their TV.
In my opinion, it is ridiculous that the United States government continues an embargo on this country.
And don’t believe the hype ….
American’s CAN legally travel to Cuba – I suggest anyone in America who wishes to visit Cuba, fly from Toronto.
I enjoyed Cuba so much that I have organized a performance incentive in the company, so to be able to go back again this year — ideally, with many people from naseba.
on Nov.15, 2010, under FND
5 years ago, (with the support of our wives) Jason and I decided to take our FND ritual to a new level, and we started the FND trip.
The FND trip is where we dedicate one week to enjoying food, wine and as Jason says “seeing cool shit“ — experiencing.
The FND Trip begins on a Friday and ends 8 days later on a Saturday … thus, we get to enjoy two Friday night dinners.
Over the past 5 years, on our various trips we have traveled by car and train all around France, Switzerland and Italy to enjoy great food, drink great wine, see “cool shit,” but most importantly, to experience.
The FND trip began in 2006…
Jason and I took a week to drive from Monaco through Tuscany (a region of Italy famous for food and wine)…
We took the rural back roads and we stopped whenever we wanted.
Once we stopped at a tiny vineyard in Tuscany.
The owner appreciated our visit so much that he brought us cheese, italian ham, and several glasses of their wine.
We sat in cheap plastic chairs in their backyard facing their vineyard … drinking their wine.
The experience was like something out of a movie.
Over that week, we traveled through Sienna, Pisa, Milan, Florence and many small Italian villages and vineyards along the way, we experienced.
In 2007, we met up in Paris …
In Paris, we went to cafés, smoked cigars, ate lunch or dinner at some of the best restaurants in Paris, and of course saw “cool shit” ….
After a few days, we rented a car and drove from Paris down through Burgundy to Lyon to the south of France … we stopped whenever we wanted.
On that trip, we enjoyed dinner at 4 of the 5 top rated *** Michelin restaurants in France…
an unforgettable week — experience.
In 2008, we met again in Paris…
That first Friday night, we didn’t like the “tiny” table we were given at the ** Michelin restaurant so we left the restaurant before we even sat down …
It was around 8pm and Jason challenged me to pull off the unthinkable: to get us a table at “Le Cinq” without reservations on Friday night …
“Le Cinq” is a *** michelin, arguably the best restaurant in Paris, certainly the most famous…
30 minutes later….
Although “Le Cinq” was fully booked, I talked my way into getting us a table.
That year, we began our FND trip with an incredible meal, but more importantly, a great story (getting the best table at the best restaurant in Paris on a Friday night without reservations)
Neither of us will ever forget that dinner experience.
The next day, we rented a car and drove from Paris to Cognac, stayed at a friend of Jason’s in Cognac for a night … and then spent a couple of days driving through Bordeaux and then back down to the south of france – the entire trip was on the rural back roads …. like the two years before, we stopped frequently in small French villages, vineyards … ate great food, drank amazing wine, saw “cool shit” and experienced.
In 2009, we met in Zurich…
We enjoyed an FND at Zurich’s top rated *** michelin restaurant then we took a few days to drive from Zurich down to the south of france … once back in Monaco, we used my home in La Turbie as our base camp and spent 3 days doing day trips, driving to several small medieval villages in France and Italy and experienced.
Two weeks ago, we met up in Rome …
We enjoyed a great FND at what many consider the best restaurant in Rome. After the dinner, we spent a few hours walking around Rome at night.
We spent two full days in Rome eating great food, drinking Italian wine and seeing “cool shit.”
We especially enjoyed visiting the sistine chapel.
After two days, we took the train to Venice and spent a couple of days in Venice eating, drinking and seeing more cool shit …
then we took the train to Bologna.
The only reason we went to Bologna was to have dinner at a restaurant we had read about – although the dinner was good, the lunch we had earlier in the day at a small, mom and pop style of restaurant was exceptional.
The next morning, we rented a car and drove from Bologna towards Monaco.
As we were driving through the back roads in the middle of gorgeous Italy, we decided to drive to Portofino, (a small St Tropez like village along the Italian Riviera) we went there for the day and stayed for dinner …
Portofino is maybe the most beautiful place I have ever experienced.
These trips are not about spending money … and for the most part are not as expensive as they sound.
Like the FND, we have several rituals which give us consistency:
- We journal each trip – both in written words, and also in pictures
- I bring two boxes of cigars for the week - Epicure #2 for Jason and Cohiba siglio V for me
- We use the Michelin guide as our source of inspiration and our only guide for the week
- We have no schedule and stop when either one of us wants to stop to eat, drink, take photos, or see cool shit
- When we drive, we must travel on the back rural roads and avoid as much as possible the highway
- Jason is in charge of making the trip music CD which we listen to when we are driving – the trip CD always begins with “Thunderstruck” by AC/DC
- When we take the train, we must travel standard class where its most animated, very crowded and uncomfortable, thus the journey provides a more interesting experience. (1st class is far better, but less crowded, thus not as interesting )
- We buy 1-2 cases of various wine from the region we visit for the wine cellar which we are expanding in my home in La Turbie
- The next FND trip destination is decided at the final FND of the trip – next year we will go to Sicily.
- The forehead shot* is always taken in front of the most iconic scene/site of the trip (see below for more details)
- The last FND of each trip, we write down 3 goals for the next 12 months – and keep them in the journal to be reviewed the next FND trip.
The FND trip became our way of experiencing everything we have talked about since that first FND in Tokyo back in 1998….
“one day, I’m gonna…”
has turned into
Instead of just day dreaming about what your “gonna” do one day…
Make your dreams become an experience.
Friday night dinner (FND) blog: http://www.scottragsdale.com/?p=3716
*the forehead photo started back in 1999 when Jason and I were on a safari in Africa – before digital camera’s.
I took a photo of Jason in front of a gorgeous view.
Ten days later, when we got the film developed we discovered the best photo of the trip was one I accidentally took of Jason’s forehead, but the photo was ironically, a great shot.
on Jan.26, 2010, under my travels
I am going to post several pictures of this trip because the photos speak much better than any of my words…
For those who are interested in seeing more pictures of my trip to Yemen, later this week I will post our trip photos on my facebook and in the photo section of this blog.
People who are close to me know that I am big into battling “misinformation” or “exaggeration” in the media, especially when it comes to the Middle East and the Arab world. This post on my trip to Yemen is another example. Yes, some areas in the north of Yemen are dangerous for foreigners, but these sites are in the north and the tourist sites have all been closed.
However, Sana’a, the capital of Yemen and the UNESCO protected old town in Sana’a can be argued is as safe or safer than some areas of LA, Chicago, DC, London, Paris, etc.
The purpose of this post is not to try and fight the misinformation, or try and convince you Yemen is safe to visit– but importantly, keep reminding everyone about the amazing world out there….try and not let fear prevent you from experiencing it, especially the Middle East.
Romain, my brother-in-law, and I go on a trip each year with the focus of the trip on adventure.
We started this ritual in 2008 when we toured Lebanon. On that trip we drove all the way from Beirut to south Lebanon upto 400 meters from the border of Israel (I made a post on that trip) … I wanted to go to Rwanda this year, but Romain said “Yemen would be a cooler story” …
The flight to Sana’a, the capital of Yemen was an easy 2 hour Emirates airline flight from Dubai. Because of the 1 hour time difference, we left Saturday morning at 6:00am and arrived to Sana’a at 7:00 am.
On the flight, I was surprised and somewhat disappointed to see at least 10 other westerners….
We sat at the exit row and the stewardess, a talkative Australian sat facing us on the takeoff and landing … she asked me “why are you going to Yemen?” And I replied, “for sightseeing.”
She said, “yea right…” and obviously, did not understand our interest in visiting Yemen.
It was quick and easy to get our visas upon arrival and within 20 minutes of landing, we were out of the airport and in the car with our driver, a big burly, efficient man named Ibrahim.
The drive to our hotel, the Movenpick lasted maybe 15 minutes — We quickly, checked in and left straight away to start our tour without even going to our room….we had just two full days in Yemen and we did not want to waste even one minute.
Throughout the day, everyone was warm and friendly; we never once felt any anger from anyone and soon forgot we were in a country which CNN and most of the western media considers dangerous and hostile.
The afternoon we drove an hour outside Sana’a to Wadi Dhar and one of the most spectacular sites I have ever visited, a palace built on a rock called the “Dar Al Hajar.” I should point out, although I would rate this experience up there with my visit to the great wall, Petra, even the pyramids …. we saw no other tourists the entire day.
The Dar Al Hajar is a palace built on and inside a massive rock. With the risk of sounding melodramatic, “remarkable” … “incredible” does not adequately describe this place. We walked all over Wadi Dhar, I even went for my 45 minute run which I had to do for my IM training … we took many photos and talked with the local people. Everyone was warm and friendly, and several of them thanked us for visiting Yemen.
We then drove to Bait Baws, the old Jewish settlement which stood for centuries (pictured below) This massive village was completely deserted and we walked freely, through this incredible maze like site and did not see any other tourists.
Most of the men chew something called “ghat” … they call it “Yemen whiskey.”
We reluctantly tried some, but only to please a group of men who invited us into the guard tower they sat. Both of us did not like the taste.
Around 6pm, our driver dropped us off at the gate entrance to the old city of Sana’a, a walled in city protected by UNESCO. This gate and walled in city dates back 700+ years. Two young men came up and started to speak in English to us and became our guides through the old town.
Absolutely, incredible … walking around tiny back alley streets at night without street lights in Yemen…
We went through “Suq al-Milh” the Souk (the market) and saw everything on sale, from Donkeys, chickens, lamb, spices, fruit, silver, tobacco, honey, blacksmith goods, just to name a few.
We even stopped in an area of the old town with several small hole in the wall restaurants and ate dinner (pictured below). We did not see any other westerners and nearly no women.
Around 10pm, the two young guides, Saleem and Maher took us to what is considered the nicest hotel in the old town of Sana’a, (Burj al salam). When we entered the gorgeous hotel, Romain and I looked at each other with regret because we had not stayed at this hotel.
Romain smoked shi-sha on the roof balcony, I enjoyed a great cigar … and we sat quietly, both thinking about how gorgeous everything was…
The next day was the most exciting.
Sunday – we woke up at 4 am and flew to the Hadramaut region of Yemen (I dont know the name of the city we flew to) We wanted to visit “Shibam” which is called “the Manhattan of the desert” and has been a UNESCO protected site since 1983
To visit the Hadramaut region, one of Yemen’s most famous historical sites we had to have approval from the government which our travel agent in Yemen got for us.
The flight was easy and safe. Upon arrival, we did not have to go through customs and we were out of the airport within minutes of landing.
We were met at the airport by our driver as well as a truck of 6 soldiers all carrying AK-47s, our body guards for the day. We had three sets of guards for the day who changed at each check point. We had a truck of 9 guards plus a guard sitting in our truck on the long drive through the desert.
I will not go into all the various sites we visited … but I want to point out our body guards really took great care of us, always ensuring they went into sites before us, and one stood guard behind us and in front …. they really went out of their way to ensure our visit was safe and enjoyable.
We had to drive 5 hours through Hadramaut and Wadi Dhan … driving through oasis like valleys, mountains and flat desert plans. Gorgeous.
Writing about “body guards” protecting us and driving with us, in my opinion distorts the reality of our experience because we never felt in danger; we were never scared and I am confident had we been on our own, we would have been ok.
We stopped at a road side cafe where Romain ate fresh chicken. I stuck to my vegan diet and only ate a small portion of cooked rice.
We flew back to Sana’a from a different airport which was near the Indian Ocean… stunning.
The low cost airline (Felix Air, like easyjet inexpensive open seating, similar to a bus) was great – both the planes were brand new and very efficient.
We arrived back to our hotel around 9pm, went for a swim in the massive swimming pool at the movenpick and then went to sleep … our flight back to Dubai was at 10am the following day, and we organized to have Ibrahim pick us up at 6:15 and drive us to the old town of Sana’a so we could walk around for a couple hours before we went to the airport.
Monday morning, we arrived to the old town by 6:30am, met our two guides and walked around the town which was slowly waking up … we went to the hotel, burj al salam to have breakfast and coffee.
The open terrace on the roof of this hotel overlooks the old town as well as Sana’a, and the view is exceptional. After quietly enjoying strong coffee and a cigar, we walked through the souk back to the entrance of the gate where our driver was waiting to take us to the airport.
I think Yemen was the 85th country I have visited, and I sincerely consider this trip to be one of the most exciting, memorable experiences of my life.
What made this trip so fantastic and memorable was the Yemeni people. Very few people asked us for money, many turned my money away when I tried to ”tip” them for a service. More people than I can remember came up and thanked us for coming to visit their country.
I was told by someone that Prophet Mohamed referred to the Yemeni people as “the most gentle of all.”
For anyone planning a trip to Sana’a … I highly recommend the Burj Al Salam. (the Movenpick is a 5 star western style hotel and very nice, but the Burj al Salam is in the middle of the old town with extraordinary views over the old town and Sana’a)
Our travel agent “Al Mamoom International Tours” was exceptional (+967712593688) they went out of their way to ensure we had a safe and enjoyable trip. A special thanks to Beatrice, the Italian woman who heads up this company who took great care of us. Beatrice has lived in Yemen for more than 5 years.
on Aug.15, 2009, under other
Recently, I have received several interesting comments which I wish to discuss, thus instead of posting the comments in the comment section, I will post some of them on the main blog page.
“Scott – I don’t know you. Until two nights ago, I had never heard of you or this blog. I was at a restaurant, dinner party in LA and someone mentioned your blog and Ayn Rand quote (I like Ayn Rand so I am intrigued) More than an hour, probably even longer, the 8 of us discussed your blog and opened it up on our mobile phones and read through several of your blogs. I thought about your blog a lot since then. You took down the entry where you discussed your ego, but why did you take it down? Personally, I like your blog and (some) of the people I was with also like this, but if you are not self promoting (as you say) then what is the purpose of this blog? Howard Roark, Los Angeles, CA
For the readers who don’t know Ayn Rand, Howard Roark is one of the heros from The Fountainhead.
To answer your question….
My blog has an aggressive Ayn Rand quote with a picture of me smoking a cigar, therefore, unfortunately people assume I am a dick waving, american who thinks he is more important than he is…
….other than maybe my cuban cigar collection, I have achieved nothing worthy of boasting about. As far as me thinking I am the ultimate business man or great CEO… I broke up my role as Chairman and CEO of naseba (the company I co-founded with Sophie, Fabien and Nic) and we promoted Sophie to CEO of the group. Sophie is a far superior operational, organizational CEO than I was. If Sophie had been the CEO from day 1, naseba would be an even stronger company than it is today.
I enjoy saying this, not just because I am extremely proud of Sophie Le Ray, she is my wife, but because I have confidence in my value; I do not need to pretend to be someone I am not.
The world we live in today, at least in my opinion, is full of people whom are absolute fucking nobodies…wanna be’s who go through their life pretending to be someone they are not.
The blog you refer to, I posted and then took it down because after re-reading it a few times, I felt it went against what I stand for (or at least what I am striving to stand for)
To try and show I am not self promoting, I ended up defensively, self promoting by mentioning several of the important readers I have had who left comments. I didn’t mention or post their comments before because I didn’t want the blog to turn into a plateform pontificating on how great I think I am. I am very proud of these readers and their comments, but posting this only comes across boastful and does not add value to the blog.
I have traveled to more than 80 countries… and when I say this, I am not self promoting or boasting, but trying to inspire the reader to go out and experience the world. I post only personal pictures on this blog of my travels to places which add value to the discussion –there is a lot of misinformation in the media (primarily in america) and by posting pictures of me in Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Iran etc I hopefully, inspire some readers to go out and experience the world. I have not posted pictures of my travels to Maldives, Carribean, Corsica, St Tropez, Singapore, Sydney etc. because those pictures add no value to the discussion. (but by mentioning these cities I come across again as boasting)
I do not post pictures of my homes or materialistic success because these add no value to discussion in the blog.
The purpose of this blog….?
This blog is all about self reflection, and I use it to manage myself. If i am going to post my goals, I must achieve them. If I am going to discuss quotes like the “man at the top didnt fall there…” I must remember them and live by them…even when I fall.
I reflect on my life….esp. my time with my previous employer, a man who had a life changing impact on me, but….
at the time, I was just like many of the people who read this blog…talented, someone who sincerely wanted the best interest for the company, but because of immaturity as well as bad influence, I became a total bitch who believed I was more important than I really was. (many readers can relate to this)
The “ego” refered to in Ayn Rand’s quote is NOT the ego which drives people to buy things they can not afford or “act as if” and pretend to be someone they are not …which ultimately, gets people to fall in the trap of believing they are more important than they really are…
The ego Rand refered to is that which drives one to be as hard working, focused, honest, dilligent and loyal as possible on their climb through life.
Some people admire Brad Pitt or LeBron James.
I admire John Galt.