Thursday, 22 August 2013

Erlend Kjellstad...Here's looking at you!

A little over 23 years ago,
Erlend Kjellstad
walked into my life.
He literally walked in.
I had just started our first store
in the 
Dayabumi Complex
Kuala Lumpur
 on one quiet afternoon,
this tall chap with a friendly
smile came in 
with an equally
friendly hello...
instantly we bonded.
That was then
this is now.
Over the years 
we kept in touch.
If I were to say  
we were writing every month,
I would be lying.
Somehow, we kept
the lines open.
on a flying visit to 
we caught up for dinner.
It was one of those clear 
 evenings where
the West End lights 
appeared enticingly
 bright & inviting.
And in this city
with a gazillion things to do,
one always seem to be running late!
The most convenient place to meet
was at
Piccadilly Circus.
It was 5 pm.
The after office crowd was full on.
Some rushing home while
others onto the pub for a relaxing
 drink or two.
Eager tourists jostled here & there,
heading towards a busy
evening from all that 
was on offer
in the
For us, we were aiming for
South Bank.
Along the way & during dinner,
here's our conversation...
What makes you laugh?
Humanity & the extraordinary
situations people sometimes
put themselves in.
Erlend Kjellstad,
Arly in short.
Norwegian by birth.
Man about town
international traveller.

Favourite cuisine?
French for breakfast,
Japanese for lunch
Italian for supper.

Describe your job?
I help companies & entrepreneurs 
navigate & thrive 
in the new digital landscape.
What are you reading right now?
I like to read many books simultaneously ...on my kindle.
Right now:
Nemesis by Peter Evans
Old Filth by Jane Gardam
number9dream by David Mitchell

How many countries have you lived in?
Do you have a theme song?
"We Have All The Time In The World"
Louis Armstrong
How do you relax?
TV Box Sets!
Currently watching "Dexter"
last seasons
"Breaking Bad".
Followed by a fantastic BBC
costume drama...
"The White Queen".
What can you make with your hands?
Yummy food.
Colourful Art
Decent Prose.
What were your first thoughts this morning?
Grateful I am on holiday 
for the first time
I don't have an 8.30 am skype business call.
Red or white wine?
Though a great
can hold their own against
any fabulous reds...
they are rare!
Your life philosophy?
To learn,
To Know
To Do.
One thing that motivates you?
Every day is a new
Whom do you most respect?
My friends.
People who are 
strong, determined & devoted 
to improving themselves.
Define style?
Using one's will to create a certain look.
Style is deliberate
is a reflection of personality.
Any hobbies?
Dabbling with painting.
Food - both fine dining & home cooking.
Travel - both to explore new things & deepen the
understanding of favourite places.
Skiing, running, scuba diving
TV Box Sets!

What is your most prized possession?
I love my crystals.
A wonderful topaz pendant
also a fabulous pair of
 black & pink tourmaline,
a cherry citrine as well as a soothing honey calcite sphere.
How many languages do you speak?
6 or 8.
Norwegian, Swedish, Danish, 
French, Japanese, Spanish
Favourite movie of all time?
Fifth Element
Luc Besson.
Beach or mountain vacation?
Being a little cancer crab,
it'll have to be the beach.
I love the ocean!

Most memorable journey?
My first backpacking trip -
Southern China 
Hong Kong.
Then a flight to Katmandu
onto India...
Darjeeling, Sikkim, Calcutta,Jaipur,Agra
up to Leh, Ladakh to Kashmir
then to Amritsar
before crossing into Pakistan.
Did the beautiful Hunza Valley
crossed the Khunjerab pass
into western China.
After that,a flight to Beijing 
the one week long
TransSiberian train ride to Moscow.
Ending in Leningrad
before heading home to
Helsinki !!!
Erlend Kjellstad
has been there,
seen that
tasted the good life.
is a man who has accomplished much.
Widely travel 
terribly articulate
while possessing
a curious
has brought him thus far.
And his journey,
I gather,
is only half begun.
You can't reinvent the wheel
 seeing it from a different
angle is what sets us
apart from the herd.
has this capacity.
His viewpoints,
in our many conversations,
are loaded heavy
with extraordinary
As we parted
I strolled back to the hotel in the
West End
on this rather balmy night,
I felt energized.
And refreshed.
Being around positive people

"The Four Characteristics Of Humanism
Curiosity, A Free Mind, Belief In Good Taste
Belief In The Human Race".

E. M. Forster

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Nice of you to write!