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I was thinking about how life is so incredible.  When you get to know people well enough to trust you, the most amazing revelations about lives come forth.  I don't know anyone who's life isn't actually just phenomenal.

Remember when you were a little kid?  Remember how everything truly seemed like magic?  As an adult, I can remember back to those days with amazement.  No matter what was happening, it was just "the next thing" and you took it in stride.  Nothing seemed particularly one way or the other.  Everything was just what happened and it was all fine.

I've also experienced a lot of serendipity in this life.  Every time I really desired something new or needed things to truly change, someone always came along and presented an opportunity.  As a matter of fact, I've come to expect this because it's happened so often.  Smileycreek is the same way.

I'll tell you of two instances of serendipity that changed things for me in ways that resulted in where I am today and what I do for a living.

When I moved to Santa Cruz, CA in June 1978, I just packed up what I owned in my Dodge van and left Denver.  Once in Santa Cruz I had no place to live and no job, but I had a friend who lived there whom I'd met in college in Boulder, CO.  I visited him and was allowed to live in my van on the street in front of his home for a short while. Within a week, one of his roommates moved out and I had a place to live...$65 per month!

Now what about a job?  Within less than two weeks of living there I was told of a temporary job at a factory that made leather belts and wallets for big department stores like Mervyn's, Miller's Outpost, Target, etc.  This factory was ramping up production for the new school year...which was in summer for the company.  I got a temp job there and after that rush was over, I was one of two people they kept on and hired permanently.

Serendipity!

A few years later, I knew I wanted to become an Acupuncturist.  I was personal friends with a couple of guys who I used to go hang out with to have meals and socialize.  The idea of creating an Acupuncture College in Santa Cruz was something we talked about several times.  After a few months the three of us decided to make it happen.  

One man had the money.  The other had a lot of experience with Taoism and Qi Gong, which is what Acupuncture is based upon.  I had the "qi" to make things happen.

My two friends became the "Founders" of the college.  I helped them do all that needed doing to create it including finding teachers and a location for the school.

FBI_01

Within two years of talking about it, Five Branches University of Traditional Chinese Medicine was created.  I was in the first class and, after graduating and getting my license, ran the school as both the COO and Academic Director for 5 1/2 years.  

I also taught several courses there as well; and worked with another to create the curriculum for every course for the entire school.

I met smileycreek there.  We really liked each other.  We got married!

Serendipity.

John and Colleen

She wrote the self evaluation study for the college (hundreds of pages of all the stuff needed to get accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges...WASC.) She's really amazing, caring and smart!

Serendipity.

Tell me about instances of serendipity in your life and how it transformed your life.

I'm listening.

~~~

Latest Updates on Kossack Regional Meet-Up News Below the Fold

:: COMMUNITY BUILDING UPDATES ::
Let's build communities!

Every region needs a meat-space community like SFKossacks.
We take care of each other in real life.
I urge YOU to take the lead and organize one in your region.
Please tell us about it if you do and we're here for advice.

~
THINK GLOBALLY, ACT LOCALLY

:: Current Diaries in Planning Mode ::
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ALERT!

BALTIMORE IS CURRENTLY ORGANIZING DEBATE WATCH PARTIES: See this diary, Next Baltimore Kossack meetup by sreeizzle2012.

To join Maryland Kos send sreeizzle2012 a Kosmail.

:: Regions Organizing! ::
NEW GROUPS IN THE PROCESS OF ORGANIZING:

Portland, Oregon Area:  Kosmail: Horace Boothroyd III to be included in the group.

Cleveland and Northeast Ohio Area:  Kosmail: GenXangster

~~~
These are the groups that have started since * NEW DAY * began. Please Kosmail navajo if you have started a group before that.
NEW GROUPS LIST:

California Central Valley Kossacks - Organizer: tgypsy

New England Kossacks - Organizer: Clytemnestra

Houston Area Kossacks - Organizer: Chrislove

Kossacks in India - Organizer: chandu

CenTex Kossacks - Organizer: papa monzano
Current diary: Meet-up Planning Take 1

Central Ohio Kossacks - Organizer: VetGrl

~~~
ESTABLISHED GROUPS LIST: (List will grow as we discover them)

SFKossacks Founded by navajo, Formed: May 2, 2005, More than 80 members

Maryland Kos Founded by timmyc, Formed: Feb 23, 2011, More than 54 members

New York City Founded by Eddie C, More than 58 members

Baja Arizona Kossacks Founded by buddabelly, Formed: Feb. 13. 2011, 90 members

Three Star Kossacks Founded by maryKK, Formed: Apr 8, 2011, 46 members

Nashville KosKats Founded by ZenTrainer, Formed: Jan 30, 2012, 28 members

Virginia Kos Founded by JamieG from Md, Formed: May 3, 2011, 67 members

•  Kos Georgia Founded by pat208, Formed: Feb 13, 2011, 18 members

~~~
:: Events Currently on the Books for ALL Kossacks ::
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TONIGHT!
Thursday, October 11th

SFKossacks watch the Vice Presidential Debate Party

TIME: 5:00 PM Pacific
LOCATION: Lusty's house
San Jose, Cambrian area
(address will be given to RSVPs by Kosmail)

ORGANIZER: Lusty - Send a Kosmail to RSVP.

Potluck Style
RSVPs:
1. Lusty [Pizza]
2. madhaus
3. Glen the Plumber
4. remembrance and TLO™
5. Edrie [salad]
6.

~~~

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DailyKos readers who live and/or work in New England
(Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont)
100_8274
Saturday, October 13th

New England Meet-Up

TIME: 1:00 - 4:00 PM
LOCATION: Margaritas Mexican Restaurant
775 Lafayette Road
Portsmouth, New Hampshire


ORGANIZERS: Common Sense Mainer and Bill in Portland Maine - Send Common Sense Mainer an email at cuckolds04103@gmail.com to RSVP. (He prefers his email listed.)

RSVPs:
1. Common Sense Mainer
2. Bill in Portland Maine
3. Clytemnestra
4. polisigh
5. Brillig
6. Mik
7. K1
8. K2
9. Simple
10. fennster
11. commonmass
12. GreenMountainBoy02
13. Sadiesue
14. rick deville
15. bouidi08
16. bjedward
17. mayim
18. Debbie in ME
19. Thestral
20. Ed Tracey
21. parsonbeach
22. Mr. parsonbeach
23. vacationland
24. sfbob
25. sfbob's friend

26. loreleiHi
27. cailin ard
28. Jim Wilson
29. Angela Quattrano
30. Angela's boyfriend
31. nhox42
32. Anothermassachusettsliberal
33. Jillian
34. knautical knots
35. Linda

Maybes:
1. kestrel9000
2. paulitics
3. moody loner
4. mommyp00ka
5. jarbyus
6. DamselleFly
7. BobBlueMass
8. radical simplicity
9. Not the Username I Wanted
10. lurker
11. annieli
12. DowneastDem
13. gracielove
14. Sobermom
15. Bogey Bill

Latest diary about this event: New England Kossacks Meet up.
~~~
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Saturday, October 13th

Houston Area Meet-Up

TIME: 1:00 PM
LOCATION: La Mexicana Restaurant
1018 Fairview Street
Montrose


ORGANIZER: Chrislove - Send a Kosmail to RSVP.

RSVPs:
1. Chrislove
2. cosette
3. Delilah
4. disconnect the dots
5. GrannyOPhilly
6. GrannyOPhilly husband
7. jkojak67 (maybe)
8. krwheaton
9. Libby Shaw
10. miscanthus

11. Mosquito Pilot
12. nomandates
13. OrganizedCrime
14. PDiddie
15. PDiddie wife
16. suesue
17 Texdude50
18. Texdude50 partner
19. txscorp
20.

Latest diary on this event: Houston Area Kossacks: Meet-up scheduled for Saturday, October 13!
~~~

Saturday, October 13th

Baltimore to Washington Area Meet-Up

TIME: 4:00 PM (JamieG from MD staying till 7:30PM)
LOCATION: Downstairs Food Court in Union Station
Washington DC

WEAR ORANGE!

ORGANIZER: JamieG from Md - Kosmail to RSVP

RSVPs:
1. JamieG from Md
2. JamieG from Md's husband
3.VexingEyes
4. webgenie
5. JanetT in Md
6. JTinDC
7. sreeizzle2012
8. it really is that important
9. Trs
10. billlaurelMD
11. mollyd
12. JR
13. LeoDaLion
14. Hastur
15. ConfusedSkyes
16. cpinva
17.  JG in MD
18. Chris Bowers
19. louisev
20. mimi
21. agrenadier
22. yellowdog

23. AnswerGuy
24. Malachite
25. randomfacts
26. IndieGuy
27. oxley
28. TeacherKen

Maybes:
TheOtherMaven
Axmill
Deep Harm
a gilas girl
restondem
shademar
Something the dog said
BDA in VA
tamandua

Latest diary on this event: VA/DC/MD Meetup Saturday Oct. 13, Check your kosmails!
~~~

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Friday, October 19th

SFKossack Red Carpet Rollout for Dave in Northridge

TIME: 1:00 PM
LOCATION: Yank Sing
Rincon Center, 101 Spear St., San Francisco

ORGANIZER: navajo - Send a Kosmail to RSVP.

RSVP LIST:
1. Dave in Northridge
2. navajo
3. Lorikeet
4. Steveningen
5. jpmassar
6. kimoconnor
7. norm
8. MrNavajo
9. remembrance
10. Glen the Plumber

11. Dharmasyd
12. boatsie
13. side pocket
14. FogCityJohn
15. Kamakhya
16. Frugal Granny
17. madhaus (maybe)
18. enhydra lutris
19. Shockwave (maybe)
20. Catilinus

~~~

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Monday, October 22nd

DAILY KOS HQ: SFKossacks watch the final Presidential Debate Party

TIME: 5:00 PM Pacific
LOCATION: Daily Kos Office
Berkeley
(address will be given to RSVPs by Kosmail)
5 min. walk from Ashby BART

Plan on street parking outside of the very limited parking in the office complex.

ORGANIZERS: Markos and navajo - Send a Kosmail to RSVP.

It's time to organize the food and drink for our Debate Watch party on the 22nd.

Markos is going to spring for pizza and the rest of us are going to bring side dishes, drinks and dessert.

My drink calculator says we need:
20 six packs of beer (-14 from volunteers = 6 packs are now needed)
34 bottles of wine (-31 from volunteers = 3 bottles are now needed)
8 six packs of water (boatsie's got this with Peligrino + bottled)
8 six packs of soft drinks (-8 from volunteers = 0 packs are now needed) Feel to bring other beverages, tho.
2 six packs non-alcoholic beer (ceebee7)

From the volunteers:

~ APPETIZERS ~
side pocket - Stuffed Mushrooms
kimoconnor - chips
shanikka - Spinach Artichoke dip
dksbook - Spinach Artichoke dip and bread
cooper888 - hand-cut salsa, chips
Lorikeet - Fruit
lineatus - Hummus
boatsie - carrots for hummus
[anonymous] - Guacamole & Huge Costco size bag of Chips
justiceputnam - Crostini, Bruschetta
Isara - Meat & Cheese tray

We need more salads!

~ SALADS ~
navajo - Huge green salad
shanikka - Spinach Salad
dksbook - Large Green Salad
edrie - Arugula, mandarin orange, tomato, onion, gorganzola & walnut salad
delilah 52 - Pasta Salad

We need more desserts! Cookies and brownies, i.e. desserts that don't need a plate.

From the volunteers:
jpmassar - Brownies
mwk - dessert
Dharmasyd - Brownies
[anonymous] - Cookies
Maudlin - Homemade cupcakes

This is handled:
80 appetizer plates (mber)
80 sturdy paper plates (mber)
80 disposable forks (mber)
100 napkins (mber)
80 plastic cups for wine (mber)

~I'll be bringing a huge healthy green salad, 4 bottles of wine, (2 white, 2 red) and a large ice chest with ice for the cold bevs. -navajo

SFKossacks, Please volunteer in the comments and let me know what you're going to bring.

RSVP LIST:
1. Markos [PIZZA!]
2. Susan Gardner
3. Kaili Joy Gray
4. Faith Gardner
5. Will Rockafellow [PIZZA!]
6. Meteor Blades
7. navajo [Green Salad, 4 bottles of wine]
8. citisven* [1-6pk beer]
9. Glen the Plumber* [1 red wine, 1-6pk beer]
10. jotter* [6 wines]
11. kimoconnor* [2 white wines, chips]
12. jpmassar* [brownies]
13. norm*
14. precinct1233* [4 red wines]
15. Ebby* [Apple cider & such]
16. lineatus* [Hummus]
17. ceebee7* [2-6pks non-alcoholic beer]
18. Dharmasyd* [Brownies]
19. madhaus* [4-6pks sodas] offers ride from San Jose
20. [anonymous]* [1 white wine, 1 red wine, 1-6pk beer]
21. [anonymous]* [Guacamole & Chips, Cookies]
22. remembrance* (maybe)
23. paradise50* [6-6pks beer]
24. Jeff in CA*
25. Kamakhya*
26. side pocket* [2-6pks beer, Stuffed-Mushroom appetizer]
27. Mary Rickles*
28. mwk* [1 white wine, 1-6pk beer +dessert]
29. boatsie* [Peligrino & carrots] offers ride from NorthBay
30. shanikka* [SpinachArtichoke dip, Spinach Salad]
31. shanikka's DAH
32. mber* [all disposable plates, cups & utensils]
33. Cathie* [2 wines]

34. The Awful Truth*
35. Lorikeet* [Fruit]
36. dksbook* [Spinach Artichoke dip and bread]
37. mr. dksbook*
38. The dksbook's SIL
39. Pluto* (maybe)
40. cooper888* [hand-cut salsa, chips]
41. GotMooned*
42. Raven Brooks*
43. Navi Ganancial*
44. melfoley * [1-6pk beer]
45. means are the ends*
46. Isara* [Meat & Cheese tray]
47. Isara's partner
48. AoT*
49. freewayblogger*
50. Shockwave*
51. Shockwave's guest
52. wiljago*
53. Fe Bongolan*
54. G2geek*
55. justiceputnam* [Crostini, Bruschetta]
56. Kygre* [2 wines]
57. delilah 52* [Pasta Salad]
58. jakedog42*
59. edrie* [Arugula/Mandarin Orange Salad]
60. iVote2004* (Maybe)
61. Maudlin* [Cupcakes]
62. Maudlin's husband
63. BlueJessamine*
64. July4rocks*
65. Catilinus
66. LinSea* [3 wines]
67. foolrex* [1 red wine]
68. EricS* [2-6pks Diet Coke, 1-6pk beer]

*HQ Office address emailed or Kosmailed
Also, FYI, the entire San Mateo bridge will be closed from Friday the 19th at 10:00 p.m. to Monday the 22nd until 5:00 a.m. It should be open for your late afternoon commute to our party, but you never know. Just a heads-ups to check before.
NEW and IMPORTANT:

More on the logistics of this event.

The dinner will be served "cocktail-party style," meaning that many will be standing with plates and mingling. There will be no tables for sitting. But the various seating described below will be available for, well, those who must hold court during cocktail hour.

There will be limited seating for the debate, the office has about 30 assorted seats, another 15 or so will be able to sit on a diagonal stairway to view the big screen. I will make sure that those who cannot stand will have a seat. We are hoping that those who are able, can sit on the floor in front of the couch seating area, that should be about another 20. If anyone has folding chairs or camp chairs they can bring please tell me in the comments or send me a Kosmail.

I could also use 3-4 card tables and one 6ft banquet table for the food staging areas. Let me know.

PORTABLE CHAIR LOG: navajo+2, side pocket+2, dharmasyd+1, LinSea+1, jakedog42+1, mwk+3,
Thanks, SFKossacks, this is coming together nicely. You ROCK!
~~~
Saturday, November 10th
Northern California Central Valley Kossacks Potluck Lunch

TIME: Noon
LOCATION: Kestrel's home in Sacramento
There will also be a pre-meet up birding adventure at Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area.

ORGANIZERS: tgypsy and Kestrel - Send tygypsy a Kosmail to RSVP.

RSVPs:
1. tygypsy
2. Kestrel
3. Sally Cat
4. Mr. Cat
5. mrsgoo

Latest diary: CV Kossacks: Post-Election Meet Up

~~~

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DailyKos readers who live and/or work in New England
(Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont)

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Sunday, November 11th
New England Kossacks MEET-UP

TIME: 1:30pm - 4:30pm
LOCATION: The People's Pub
24 Federal St
Greenfield, MA 01301
(413) 773-0333

ORGANIZER: Send Clytemnestra a Kosmail to RSVP.

We will be collecting donations for the Native American Netroots project Okiciyap at this Meet Up.

RSVPs:
1. Clytemnestra
2. Remembering Jello

Maybes:
1. annieli

Latest diary: New England Kossacks - November Meet Up

~~~

Send navajo a kosmail if you post a diary about an event so we can update our round-up.

Okay. Floor's open.
Tell us what you are doing on this NEW DAY?

Originally posted to Connect! Unite! Act! on Thu Oct 11, 2012 at 07:30 AM PDT.

Also republished by SFKossacks.

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