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As it often happens today I stumbled upon a video on YouTube from a fellow who travels on his motorcycle around the world. He lives in Germany and is a German Citizen but originally he is from Pakistan. His videos are in Urdu with English subtitles. I watched several of his videos, they are fascinating. He travelled from Germany down to Turkey and then on to Iran and to Iraq then to Kuwait and presently he is in Saudi Arabia for the EID. His name is Abrar which in Pakistan is a masculine name but in Arab countries it is feminine. Abrar is also a verse in the Quran.

He meets quite a few people and he is recognized by some people because his videos have gone viral. What I find interesting is the world he shows us in his travel and a lot of it I remember from my own experience and life in the Middle-East. The people, the culture, the food, also the kindness and courtesy of people, always helpful and friendly, this is what I remember. Seeing those videos I miss that part of the world. So I went across the street to DAL who sells Kumpir or stuffed potatoes and makes an excellent Turkish coffee with cardamon seed, such good coffee served in demi-tasse bought in Istanbul, so you get the whole experience. I have started to put cardamon seeds in my morning espresso, love the flavour.

City of Mecca, the Royal Clock Tower at 680 meters. Dominates the old city and the Holy Al-Haram Mosque.

The Abraj Al-Bait Towers also known as the Mecca Royal Hotel Clock Tower, is seen from Jabal al-Noor or ‘Mountain of Light’ overlooking the holy city of Mecca. Over three million Muslims from around the world are expected to perform the upcoming Hajj or pilgrimage. (Photo credit should read FAYEZ NUR ELDINE/AFP)

Weight wise it is going very well, I started one month ago and was at 191 lbs, now I am at 180 lbs and the ultimate goal is 163 lbs. so if all goes according to plan I should be able to reach this goal by end June early July. I would love to simply maintain that weight, I will ask my nutritionist how to maintain it.

I have to say that so far I have not had any issue with feeling hungry, I also noticed that when suddenly I think I am hungry it is usually not hunger but tiredness or anxiety, a glass of water and a few raw almonds will solve the problem. Drinking more water minimum 1 Litre a day is not difficult, I can drink up to 2 litres, this also helps a lot with eliminating salt and washing away fat. I feel so much better now.

So far the cruise ship business has been very quiet. Some 3 ships came and went but I did not see many people, in fact I am told that most ships are about 25% full. Two cruise ships have cancelled stops in PEI. We may get more flights and car traffic this year. Several airlines have added flights to PEI and air traffic appears to be back to normal prior to 2020.

We also have a few new restaurants in town catering to a more up-scale crowd, which is a good thing, there is certainly a demand for it. One opened on Great George Street called Abbiocco which in Italian means relaxation. The restaurant has only been open for 5 days and has been a big success so far. The other one I am told will be called Rocket Fish at the corner of Queen street and Richmond street. It will be a up market fish and seafood restaurant. I know that the people setting it up will spend at least 2 million dollars to refit the space which was a tourist shop for many years and the building itself is 1880, all brick and built by William C. Harris, a famous architect who was also a musician. However this restaurant will not open until August given the state of construction and renovations.

There is definitely a change over in terms of restaurants in town, we appear to be catering more to the local crowd and less so to the tourist crowd, there is always the tourist restaurants with the typical fare geared to the budget of families or older tourists. Cruise ship tourists do not necessarily go to a restaurant since food is provided on board.

Lastly we are told to wait for Monday 9 May which is Victory Day for Russia marking the end of WWII. Apparently Putin will declare either victory on Ukraine or make a formal declaration of war and enact conscription to raise more troops. His side kick former Russian President Medvedev made a speech declaring that Russia will extend its territory from the Pacific to Portugal, sort of pie in the sky speech. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov also made statements accusing Israel of supporting the Nazis in Kyiv. Israeli Prime Minister Bennett jumped at this statement. All in all this will not end well. Finally let us not forget that the Soviet Union under Stalin and Nazi Germany in 1939 had a secret treaty to divide the world, only in 1942 after being attacked by Hitler’s troops did Stalin change sides and asked for the help of the allies. Unfortunately I find that what I see and hear now is far too similar to events 80 years ago.

Ribbentrop-Stalin-Molotov in 1939 at the signing of the secret treaty to divide the world. Good friends and allies then.