The Not So Lost Original 82 Posts … Of Gifts Of The Journey

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Unearthing An Archive

If you’ve been paying attention to my blog over the last few days you may have received an update or two you that found confusing. As long-time readers know, GOTJ had another home before moving to this one.

Stalker Forces Change

I was forced to change my website in early 2009 because I couldn’t moderate comments on iWeb and I had begun to accumulate ugly comments from a woman who had stalked and harassed me for months before finding my blog and making her vitriolic comments public. It’s an old story that I thought had died after not hearing from Maggie Namjou or  Margreta (Maggie) Kerr for several years.

Emails From Others

I have received emails from other people asking about her during this quiet time, people like Louise and Ian who contacted me last week with questions about what John and I went through while Maggie was harassing us.

Having saved hundreds of emails she sent us and recordings of the screaming rants in our phone messages on our wedding day, we told Ian and Louise that we would be happy to help with evidence as they deal with a lawsuit involving Maggie Namjou.

I don’t need to rehash the past, but if you don’t know the ugly story and want to know more, you can read about it by clicking on the links. http://stalkerupdate.wordpress.com/ and  http://giftsofthejourney.com/stalker-alert/

After Louise contacted me about the missing links to the old posts dealing with Maggie Namjou, I decided while I was dusting off the past for her, I would repost the original 82 posts ensuring all writing associated with GOTJ could be found in one place.

History Repeats Itself 

So if some of what you see over the next few days or weeks looks familiar, check the date to see if it’s one of the missing 82.

I’ve been able to transfer the comments associated with each post, but the links back to the blog sites of those commenting seems to be lost. Please feel free to leave another comment if you’d like and thanks so much for your interest.

New Posts

One last thing, I plan to add new material during this time so don’t stay away thinking it’s the season of reruns … you won’t even see the 82 unless you’ve signed up for an email notification found in the top right corner or you go looking for them in the archives. I found my footing with these early posts. I hope you’ll find something in them too.

Where Do Broken Blogs Go … Can They Find Their Way Home?

If I said I had been kidnapped by a monster to explain my lack of posting here over the last two weeks, it would not be far off from the truth. I took this photo at Eden Project over four years ago when I was in the process of relocating my life to Cornwall from the US. The monster in the background is made up of old electronic equipment, broken bits of televisions, washing machines, out-dated computers and other kinds of gadgets that can improve our lives or sometimes imprison us.

Held Hostage By My Indecision

Computer changes are at the top of the long list of distractions that have kept me from writing lately.  I’ve been getting updates from Apple for months letting me know that I needed to move to iCloud as Mobile Me was ending. Don’t worry if none of the details make sense to you, just know that over the last year I’ve known this was coming and put it off making a decision until now.

Keeping My Email

One of my chief concerns with not moving to iCloud had to do my email and I was only able to decide once I discovered I could leave it as it was and let some other significant parts of my online/connected life go. Even then, I waited until the last four days possible to do so and only after reading loads of confusing information. See what I mean about monsters and indecision.

No More iWeb

My first blog was through iWeb, which was a big part of the problem because it was affected by the discontinuation of Mobile Me and the required move to iCloud.  That blog became an archive for my earliest posts after I moved to WordPress in early 2009, a move necessitated by my lack of ability to moderate comments that were being left by a female stalker who did a variety of things to try to make my life miserable.

The early version of GOTJ no longer exists now. What you will see if you look for giftsofthejourney.com is this post as I mapped the domain name to my WordPress account knowing my iWeb version of the first GOTJ would disappear at the end of June.

I saved a copy of the first 80 or so posts and plan to move them over to this blog one post at a time, backdating them so they show up in the time period in which they were originally created. Even though it will take some work to republish them along with their comments, I think it will be worth the effort to have all of my posts since June 2008 finally in one place.

I’ve been wanting to use my domain name here without the addition of wordpress.com and hopefully this change to giftsofthejourney.com won’t create any problems for those of you who have subscribed to my blog. We’ll know after this post.

 

Unedited E – Getting Silly On The Path To Kynance Cove

Elizabeth, John, & Lisa on the path to Kynance Cove (Photo by Patrice)

This post is going to be a bit funny as we move through it so stay with me until the end if you want a laugh. In the background of this shot you can see me doing what I do most of the time when we’re out on the coast path.

I was taking this photograph while Patrice was snapping the first photo above.

After she handed the camera off to John, I heard him say something about me being in the picture he was trying to take so I decided to get really silly. Now, I don’t usually show you the silly stuff and I need to tell you why. Most of the time you see me smiling and posed in photographs. I’ve always been that way. My mother once said that even as a small child I would always strike a pose when the camera was aimed in my direction. Rarely were these silly poses and I think I was particular even then about how I thought I should look in a photograph.

People that know me will tell you that I am particular about what photos of me are allowed on the internet. Yesterday, I showed you a hair-raising shot of me that I would normally keep private because I knew the ones below were worse. John would say I’m pulling faces. There’s rarely record of me doing this kind of thing, but I’m working on laughing more at myself and letting you have a chuckle too.

Here’s where John indicated I was messing up the shot. That sounded like a challenge to me so …

You can see what happened next and just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse … what kind of look is that on my face in the photo below? You can double-click on it for the full effect.

 So there you are … an unedited and slightly out of control version of me.

Misunderstood

Photo by Hamish Mitchell of Hamish Mitchell Photography

Due to my American roots and accent, I am often misunderstood in conversation. This can lead to odd looks, strange responses, and hurried explanations of what I was really saying, not what someone thought they heard. I’ve written about a few times, but it’s nice to know that even Brits with their variety of distinct accents can find themselves in the same position.

Having seen a funny comment on Facebook posted by a friend of mine, I asked permission to share the story here. It seems that Hamish Mitchell, who does lovely work as a photographer in Cornwall, left a recorded message requesting tickets to the Chard Horse Show. Hamish does a variety of creative photography, but has a great reputation for his sports photography which includes events with horses.

So imagine what his wife and business partner Nicola thought when tickets arrived in the name of  “Henry Schnitzel” instead of Hamish Mitchell. She said the tears were rolling down her face as she imagined some poor person having to listen to the recording a few times before going with the most likely name that could be deciphered.

I noticed Hamish posted this late yesterday: “Hamish Mitchell will not be attending the Chard Show tomorrow – Henry Schnitzel has very kindly offered to take his place instead!”

Hamish does a good bit of wedding photography and we’ve chatted about business and blogging a few times. You can see more of his work here: http://www.hamishmitchellphotography.co.uk/ 

While I’ve photographed weddings in the past, my interest in wedding photography as a business went on a kind of hiatus after my move to Cornwall. I couldn’t say honestly that my head doesn’t still turn when I happen upon a wedding and since I usually have a camera of some sort with me, I have been known to step into the bushes slightly to snap a picture or two.

Our Cornish Village Church - From The Bushes - 2010

I had an opportunity to see and photograph Hamish while he was shooting a wedding not too long ago although it was from my tucked away place in the bushes and I was using one of John’s little point and shoot cameras that I had slipped in my pocket before going on my run. I say that to excuse the quality and I’m including a photo or two of my professional work with my good gear at the end of this post.

I’d love to offer my services to Hamish as a second shooter sometime just as long as I don’t have to wear trousers like the ones I saw him wear that day. Okay, you know I’m trying to make you smile here as the plaid of his trousers fit the wedding perfectly as there were many men in kilts. I wonder if I could get away with my standard basic black …

Photo By E.Harper (Hamish Mitchell Photographing Bride)

And just in case Hamish happens to stop by for a look to see if I might qualify as a second shooter, I’ll leave you with some of my wedding work especially since I could not lift any from his website to showcase. Please do click on the link above to see his lovely photography especially the horses. I love those!

Photo By Elizabeth Harper - Like A Modern Day Jane Austin Scene

Photo By Elizabeth Harper - Looking Toward The Future

Protecting Your Eyesight In The Veggie Patch – Lessons Learned From A Gracious Gardener

I took this photograph in mid April when my friends Mike and Rebecca were putting their garden into the ground. My intention that day had been focused around getting some shots of an unusual magnolia tree in their back garden, but after finding the natural light a bit too dark to get a good exposure, I moved on intent on seeing what else might be interesting and different to photograph. I’d been asking questions as I went, about the plants and the expectations that they hoped for in return for their labor and it didn’t take long for my inexperience and ignorance about gardening to become quickly apparent.

As I stepped up to the raised bed in the image above I thought to myself, Alright … I know this one, now I can at least show her I am not a total goof when it comes to growing things. I turned to Rebecca and said kind of casually in a voice that sounded like I thought I knew exactly what I was talking about, ” So you’ve got those plastic cups on those stakes to scare away the birds huh, does it work? ” To which Rebecca said something I remember as,” Not exactly, but they do keep us from poking an eye out when we lean in to work on the plants.”

Sticks & Stones: More Venom From My Online Stalker

Many of you who have been reading my blog since it began in 2008, know that for some time I’ve been harassed by a woman named Maggie Namjou, aka Margaret Powell, Margreta Kerr, Maggie Kerr, and Maggie K Namjou. After months of endless phone calls, including four on our wedding day where she left screaming obscenity laced messages on our answering machine which John saved for the police, multiple nasty comments on my blog posts and more deluded emails than I could have imagined anyone might send, I finally changed my blog to a WordPress site so I could moderate comments.

After receiving nightly phone calls until 3:00 a.m. and calls throughout my work day I was forced to change my cell phone number as well. I made the changes, married the man I loved and went on with my life.

Given that I had closed several of the ways she could reach out to me it appeared as though John and I had dropped off her radar. Not surprisingly, like most stalkers she has a pattern she follows where she bombards the people she harasses with constant email and phone calls for three or four months followed by three to four months of silence so that just when you think she has moved on to her next person, she comes back to start all over.

After a few months of quiet, she seems to be back trying to create chaos in our lives. Recently, she sent John an email and later she sent one to my email address which was addressed both of us. We chose to ignore them.

Now it seems she has decided to focus on us again and is trying to inflict damage to our reputation by way of several blog posts where she goes on and on about things which are just not true. She quite tragically portrays herself as an innocent victim who has been harassed and slandered by me. I find the whole slant of her story quite funny given the abuse that has been heaped on us.

I think that most rational intelligent people would be able to see her lies for what they are, but I am linking back to my earlier posts on another site at http://stalkerupdate.wordpress.com so you can have fair balance should you see any posts by Maggie Namjou or Margreta Kerr writing fiction about John or myself. I’ve seen her newest posts and it’s just more of the same.

With this recent harassment on the internet, I feel I must at least direct my readers to an explanation. I’ve written about how she tried to bully and control us with her behavior in the past and I’d rather not write it all out again here. Please click on the highlighted links if you need more of the back story.

I’ll be happy to answer questions and if you’ve had an online stalker or have been in a similar situation, please feel free to share it here.

People like this only win when we let them. I will not allow Maggie Kerr Namjou to trash my reputation. She can write whatever crap she wants and I will continue to post the real story.

For the record, even after months of harassment by her, I did not use her name on the internet until she left it herself. (see the Maggie comment)

* Since posting this message Maggie Namjou has changed the two initial blog postings of hers that had prompted me to write the Sticks & Stones post. Those changes make appear as if I was some big bad meanie who decided write the above alert to anyone googling my name simply in response to an email she sent me in November. If I were indeed the person she describes me to be and truly intent on destroying her life, I could have posted any number of the awful emails or photographs she sent to us as well as my correspondence with others who have been affected by her outrageous behavior in the past.

She mentions in detail on the post below in the second paragraph from the bottom, a woman who she had words with having forgiven her (I know the whole story and it is much more shocking than just words) I know this woman having commiserated through emails about our mutual problems with Maggie Namjou and emailed her after reading the post below. She informed me that she’d had no contact with her and had removed her comment from her own blog because she did not want to see it on there. So once again, no contact, no forgiveness as she indicated, just one more lie to try to make me look like an ogre.

She speaks of my desire to destroy her all because of her behavior during a difficult period in her life and nothing could be farther from the truth. She is a bully who tries to controls people with her nasty behavior and then pleads for forgiveness based on the premise that she was unwell at the time and in the middle of a nervous breakdown. Let me just say … this is not the first time she has used a nervous breakdown as an excuse for bad behavior. She cites several breakdowns in previous emails to us.

She has been telling everyone about her most recent suicide attempt over at her posting and how I am reveling in it. Again, she’s written endlessly in the past about previous attempts enough to recognize her as someone who uses a variety of ways to manipulate people including suicidal talk.

I certainly have no desire to see anyone harm themselves and would feel sad to see anyone take their life. I will not however be bullied into taking down my posts which protect my reputation. She has written about me before and as she points out on her posts about my words lasting forever, her lies about me can also be found on the internet.

Having been through this before, I had enough foresight to email her posts to myself because I know her pattern. I had an idea she would go back and change them in an attempt to cast me in a more negative light than she already has. So I’m posting them here to have truth in reporting. I am so sorry to sully even for a moment my blog site which is a place of delight for me to share bits of my life and photographs.

I know that those of you who stop by and have in some cases become friends would never believe her lies, but a stranger googling my name might not look for more information if it were not already out there and might assume there was some truth to her accusations so I feel I really must address it.

I’ll return to my normal posting with something more pleasant later and I hope like everything you never have to deal with someone like this in your life.  It’s a gorgeous day here and I am going to enjoy it secure in the knowledge that I have done the very best I can to deal with this intrusion into my life.

The two images below are the postings that prompted me to write this post.