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Using a 350 year old model to create a 50% discounted Peer to Peer insurance scheme.


You hate insurance, I hate insurance, we all hate insurance but we all know, when things go down the toilet, it’s good to have the safety net to help us recover.

Like all of us, Sebastian Herfurth hated insurance also but after deciding he didn’t want to work in law, thought, there had to be a better way for insurance, using the power of modern social networks. This is simply reinventing the forgotten system from the history of insurance of 350 years ago, when friends and colleagues would group together to spread the risk of damages.

Dr. Sebastian Herfurth

Sebastian Herfurth

The reason we don’t like insurance is we’re dealing with a gargantuan, faceless company and we never see benefits unless something goes wrong.

If we’re a good risk we see little benefit.

Sebastian and the team at Friensurance are taking that model of insurance and turning it on its head. If we do the right thing, not to abuse the scheme and make no claims, we’re rewarded with up to a 50% refund of our insurance premium.

This scheme is all about using the opinions and good will of our social network to encourage risk minimisation and avoid people who may defraud the scheme.

It’s simple really…

  1. Buy insurance through Friendsurande from a large traditional provider.
  2. Group a good risk, social network to share the policies.
  3. Claim when needed but not abuse.
  4. If no claims are made, receive a refund of 50% at year’s end.

It seems to have taken four weeks for my soul to catch up with me.


I’ve been in Berlin now for four weeks meeting people and spending time settling in to how this city operates. I find it takes time to find my feet in any new environment and understand how the basic functions of life operate. It’s a mix of confusion and excitement, that is both fun and distracting.Alexander Platz

Now that the settling is hopefully completed I’m looking forward to seeing how things continue to evolve. I’m slowly developing a network of people who are openly and actively connecting with me and offering assistance both in general ideas of where to go and what to see but also who I could connect with. The open generosity of many of the people here is encouraging and maybe shows something of the personality of the people of Berlin. [click to continue…]


Grabbing opportunities that can’t be found anywhere else.


When you’re young and exploring the world, there are chances for finding yourself wherever you are but the opportunities that present themselves will vary depending on location. Just take a moment to consider how different your life would have been and the opportunities that you took advantage of or missed simply due to where you spent your formative years.

Henry Richards

Capturing the spirit of opportunity

In this episode of Your Story we chat to Henry Richards about the opportunities that are presented for him here in Berlin that weren’t available to him in Sydney where he grew up or London where he migrated from.

Henry is at that point in life right now, where he’s formulating the person he’ll become and it’s his current experiences in Berlin that will be part of that.

We chat about how he identifies himself, how Berlin culture allows people like him to be as they wish, to risk presenting in ways that other communities don’t allow and how he sees a future for himself here to continue to grow, study and become who he’ll one day be. [click to continue…]


One Guitar for a DJ Mix Party


At a recent Betahaus event in Berlin, the Awesome Foundationawarded 1000€ to innovative musician Robin Sukroso, aka. Rainer, to help further the development of his one man band guitar modification.

Robin Sukroso

Taking the idea of percussive and traditional guitar playing, using the instrument as an input for a midi device, means that virtually any synthesized instrument can be played, looped and feed back into the mix all while performing in the best of the techno clubs here in Berlin.

Three years of development including cutting into his beloved acoustic guitar and now Rainer has his own performance instrument and a prototype to take to manufacturing. Time will tell if we see this as an add on available for musicians to help them with a new style of performing,

If you want to have  an understanding of how his creation works just watch this video…

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Berlin’s Heyday of Anything Goes

Could Berlin return to these times 100 years later?

As a walk around the streets of Berlin and talk to people I realise that there are aspects of the culture that reminds me of Berlin’s most avant guard times in the 1920’s. In the area where I’m staying I notice some of the relaxed attitudes that are mentioned in this video.


Liberal Berlin back to the “20”s (mp3)

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Megève’s a stunning place to see Snow and Ice, something I don’t know!

I’ve always wondered what it’s like to be in the Alps in winter. The cold, the snow, the strong biting sun but I’ve never had the chance, until now!

Megève Village from above. Haute-Savoie, Rhône-Alpes

Megève from high up on the slopes

What we call mountains in Australia doesn’t really compare to what is the real alps scattered around the rest of the world. When I finally saw those mountainous rocks piercing the sky on my first visit to Megève in the summer of 1992 for my sister’s wedding I thought to myself, “these are real mountains!” …And as I left I wondered what it would be like in winter.

Now I’ve seen a real winter scene.

Looking down on Megève at night

Megève at night

Coming from the sub-tropics, a real winter as experienced by most people is something that I’ve always wondered about. Sure I’ve experienced some cold moments in my life but never the ice and snow of the French Alps and all that it entails. It’s far too easy for me to have no idea what to do and how to live in this environment but there is also the fun of seeing for real what I’ve only every seen in film and images. [click to continue…]


Letting life unfold as it will…


What will happen, will happen and we can do nothing about it because we don’t have any control despite the illusion that we do.

This, to my understanding is the way of life. We live an illusion that we make decisions about all manner of things but the reality is every decision we make is based on the sum total of experiences that we’ve had in our life. At the most fundamental level we are our genetics and our totality of experiences, nothing more. And those two criteria are all that we are and every decision is based on those things. We make our decisions based on this criteria but who are we, if not our genetics and our experiences which drive our decisions?

Todays Your Story Addendum episode is from the departure gate just prior to boarding my flight to Europe.

I’m off on a trip to Europe for 2.5 months. Initially I’ll be in Megève in the French Alps as a guest of my sister and her family then I’ll be heading north to spend a couple of months in Berlin.

Did I make the decision to go?

Top End Flight

On My Way to Europe

Well, I may think and feel like I did but the reality is I simply reacted to the situations as they presented themselves with the final upshot being I’m now on my way as I write this somewhere over Indonesia. But more to the point this trip is about creating situations that could provoke opportunity.

In my everyday life I have a routine of situations and people who are a constant with little variation and without breaking away from the status quo I’ll continue to have the same opportunities.

It’s crunch time!

For five years now I’ve been working on Your Story and Create Your Life Story, to learn the skills and develop the sites to where they may be able viable as more than just hobbies. I’ve tried a few things to develop them but to date these things haven’t worked and it’s time to see if there may be some other opportunities that I haven’t considered.

Staying in my home environment will maintain a similar situation to what’s been the case for these last five years but travelling to Europe may, just may, create an environment that is different and present opportunities that I couldn’t find at home. [click to continue…]


Some people have a passion for food that goes beyond what most of us have.


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Do you love food?
I mean really love it, in all the different ways that it can mean. The history, the preparation, the eating, the sharing! Or do you just eat food because you have to, as the cooking is more of a task that has to be put up with in order to eat.

Charmaine O'Brien

For some people food is more than just simple sustenance and for Charmaine O’Brien food is far more than just that!

We all eat but it’s rare to find someone who embodies food in more than just the simplest body nurturing way. Occasionally I come across someone who eats, breathes and sleeps food, and recently at the Oral History Association of Australia conference in Melbourne, I had the good fortune to meet and ask Charmaine to come onto the show and tell us about her interest in food, based on the stimulating presentation and menu she prepared for the dinner.

What’s on the menu? – 100 years ago!

It’s not often that we get to taste a historical menu from post colonial, Australian cookbooks and discover that food reproduced from 100+ years ago is not just boiled mutton and lard with damper. [click to continue…]


How does an entrepreneur see the world?


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Are you one of those rare individuals who see the world differently? You see opportunities where others only see problems!
Do you then have the skills to action those opportunities to make something of them? Maybe a business!

Mike Boyd Entrepreneur

Mike Boyd

If you are, maybe you’re what is referred to as an entrepreneur. But the curse of the entrepreneur is seeing too many opportunities and maybe working on so many of them that the efforts are fragmented and none are given the effort that is necessary to make a success of any. Or maybe you don’t have all the skills in place to make a success of your ideas even though you see the opportunity. There are so many components to get right to have a successful business personality.

Today we talk with Mike Boyd who has already started drawing attention to himself as a young “go getter “, making a name as someone who can think and motivate with his enthusiasm for business. We talk about:

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