Meet my giant chicken


"Howzit" is what they say here in Wilderness, South Africa (my current location). It means hello.

Prior to staying Wilderness, I was in Oudtshoorn — a town known for its ostrich farms. Naturally, I visited an ostrich farm before leaving Oudtshoorn. After a 90-minute tour, I had the chance to ride an ostrich. Behold — a pic of me mounting a giant chicken!

Raymond Duke Ostrich

Ready for some ostrich facts?

Not sure why I asked, because you're getting them anyway. That ostrich in the pic above is male. You can tell it's male because males have dark feathers. Males have dark feathers because males protect the eggs at night. Dark feathers allow the males to blend in the the darkness.

During the day, females guard their eggs. Females have lighter feathers because that's what is best for blending into the day time environment. Pretty cool, right?

Here's another fact: ostriches eat stones to help them digest food. Yes, they eat actual ROCKS. When they slaughter the ostriches (for meat, feathers, skin, etc.) they find a belly full of stones. They actually keep these stones, grind them up, and feed them to the baby ostriches.

I bet you didn't know you'd get a collection of ostrich facts today. I'm full of surprises. But don't worry, my surprises are meant to help — not harm — you.

Anyway, onward with the subject of today's email: traveling. It's no secret I love traveling. Traveling benefits you by introducing you to new people, new places, and new things. But most of all, traveling is especially important for sparking your creativity.

There's a lot of science that supports this idea.

Creativity is related to neuroplasticity, or how the brain is wired. Neural pathways are influenced by environment and habit, meaning they’re also sensitive to change: New sounds, smells, language, tastes, sensations, and sights spark different synapses in the brain and may have the potential to revitalize the mind.
— Via The Atlantic

Basically, if you want to be more creative, travel more. If you want help with traveling, here's $40 in free Airbnb credit.

I know $40 isn't enough to book your 7-day trip to the Maldives, but it IS enough to book a 1-day getaway to a neighboring city. Have you ever thought about staying in neighboring city?

You don't need to take a 10-hour flight to South Africa to experience the benefits of traveling. All you need to do is change your current environment.

Personally, I get bored and antsy when I'm in one place for too long. I need to be on the go. Maybe it's in my nature to be a traveler. Perhaps I was an explorer in another life. Which reminds me, one of my ex-girlfriends DID once refer to me as Marco Polo. In her words (as she laid in bed catching her breath), "You were able to find what nobody else could."

But that's a story best left for another day... (or kept private.

Raymond Duke