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Whale guru
Sunday 30th September 2011, Bermuda.
When I mentioned to Andrew that I decided to stop working, he told me about how he had done something similar many years ago. I asked him more about his career and he revealed an interesting past. He had published 10 books, ran a safari company, been a pilot in Africa, spent time as an investment banker, ran an international charity and made a film about whales. After that I kind of accidentally told him about Wearelucky and he was visibly excited, shooting off a million questions. We had several lunches where I picked his brain because I was interested in how he kept himself busy and disciplined without the structure of a permanent job. His advice was simple: organisation, goals and always doing something that interested him
As I was leaving Bermuda I told him I would like to donate to his next project and the money will go towards a follow up to his film, Where the Whales Sing. I've just been back to Bermuda to catch up with Andrew and finally take some snaps.
Questions & Answers
1. What have you decided to do with the money?
I have been researching humpback whales in the middle of the ocean for five years. The first three years of research was piggy-backed on the making of the film 'Where the Whales Sing'. The second two seasons were piggy-backed on the budget for doing the large-format illustrated book, 'Whale Song: Journeys into the Secret Lives of the North Atlantic humpbacks'. It didn't seem I could get funding for just doing the research and I was on the point of deciding to give up when Wearelucky came along.
2. Has it changed the way you think about giving?
The ability to give is a precious gift. I can give through my energy and passions. Others can give through the funding of those who have the energy and passions to do something good. Some people are good at making money, others are good at making this world a better place. Either way, giving is just as valuable.
3. Did you think about spending the money on yourself and what difference the money might make to your life?
The money is spent subsidising my time and effort. I devote an inordinate amount of my time to pursuing research on humpback whales. Without spending this money on the necessities for my family, I wouldn't be able to pursue this research. This money makes a huge difference to my family, but most importantly, it frees me up to follow my passions and to do good. I wear the same T-shirts I have worn for a decade, I drive an old car, the kids have second-hand everything, but that's not important. Spending money on unnecessary materialistic things is a waste.
4. Did you feel lucky or responsible?
Both. You are responsible for your own luck.

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