I Learnt 3 Valuable Lessons

Whilst growing up I was never around animals and when I was, I was afraid of them. I have no idea why I was scared of them. I must have been incorrectly wired to believe that animals can hurt me so I always kept my distance. Besides, living in the city I did not have much opportunity to be around them so my lack of exposure limited me in knowing and understanding them.  Fast forward to today. I’m in love with animals. Especially in the last year. I am stunned at how little I knew about them. My ignorance got me curious to learn about the many beautiful species and so my journey began.  One of my favourite animals are dogs and specifically border collies. I have been lucky enough to get to know Lily. Lily is 4 years old and shes is a quarter labrador but she has very distinct border collie characteristics. Lily loves being around people and when she is stroked or itched, her facial expression can melt one’s heart. I know because it did mine. I am learning valuable lessons from Lily.  Lily is authentic. She waits by the stairs because she knows that we walk down the stairs and she gets attention; love. She is not embarrassed to display that side of her. It reminds me how I used to find it hard to ask for love. I masked what I wanted hence made it hard for others to know when I needed support or comfort. But if I showed what I felt then there would not be any issues in getting the love... read more

What makes a holiday oh-so special?

Going away for the weekend to spend a bit of downtime together led us to Tai Chung, a city in Taiwan. We loved every bit of it. Not because it was glamorous because that would be Hong Kong or Dubai. It was very average in terms of urbanization. So why did we like it so much? The city has the perfect balance of great infrastructure with greenery infused in it.

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What a blissful weekend looks like? 

Have you ever gone to a place and felt like time has stopped and you’ve gone back in time? That’s how my weekend felt like.

We frequently go to this place, the second hand bookstore and get some great buys. Last Saturday was no different. As we left, we got chatting with the owner, a retired Englishman. I learnt so much about him, his family, his life and we even chatted about diet and fitness. I was so intrigued that I didn’t want to leave!

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Live Your Childhood Dream

I’m hitting 41 this year and yet I feel like a kid. I feel more alive than ever. I remember when I was in high school, I loved writing. I was one of the editors of the school newsletter and was so proud of my work even though it probably wasn’t all that great! I had the passion and the love for writing. Even though I was not fortunate enough to study writing after graduation, my first Masters was in Creative Writing and now I blog whenever time permits.

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She said “I do!”

I had the honour of attending a wedding banquet of a dear friend of mine recently. Those that know me know I shy away from weddings because 1) I’m not a social butterfly though I can in some situations 2) I find weddings overly done to the point that many brides rather live just for that day than focus on the elements of what makes a good marriage. Having said that, I don’t attend a lot of weddings. This one however warmed my heart.

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What TV Does To Us?

Like (nearly) all of us in Hong Kong, I am concerned about the environment we live in. The air we breathe, the water we drink etc. But this blog isn’t going to be about that. It’s going to be about a different form of toxicity. The toxicity of that favourite little (or sometimes big) device in most (if not all) our houses. The television set.

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Birdville

A couple of days ago, we were innocently walking out of the hotel and saw a few crows nibbling away at something. Because there are quite a few crows in the hotel, I started examining them closely. But seeing what they were picking on did my stomach in. I was disgusted beyond belief. My views about crows changed instantly. A dead rat was now food for these birds. I felt sick!

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I’m afraid of …..

Some people are afraid of falling in love. After getting hurt and having their heart broken, they choose not to give their heart away. The fear of someone abusing that and breaking it again prevents them from trusting someone with their heart.

I think that in life we all have fears. Some would find falling in love hard like I mentioned earlier, while some find trying new things difficult while some others find it hard to be sociable.

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Am I Trusting People Too Easily?

Have you ever met someone and felt so completely connected that you trusted them immediately? It’s as if you’ve know the person for years and they can do no wrong. I’ve had that feeling many times. The funny thing is that these people that I’ve trusted are no longer around. Doesn’t it make you wonder what happened? If I trusted them and it felt right and we connected so well, wouldn’t that friendship last a lifetime? Well, through these experiences I’ve realised a few things.

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Are you living a lie?

When was the last time you had to cancel an appointment and you lied that you were stuck at work or you were sick instead of saying the truth which could have been you didn’t feel like going. We lie because we can’t handle the truth. We have been programmed to take everything personally and then we get offended by the truth. Hence we have decided that lying is the better alternative in dealing with situations as such. So we lie to others.

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Are You Happy 24/7?

What is happiness? Today more than ever, there are tons of self help books written by monks, saints, scholars, philosophers etc. on what happiness is. Happiness is different to each person at different times. I like how Abraham Lincoln puts it “Most folks are as happy as they make up their minds to be.” This is very true. We choose to be happy when we want to and while we are stuck being unhappy what do we do?

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I do then I don’t!

Isn’t it beautiful when two people unite and say “I do”? Love is something we all look for and when we find it in the right person we take a leap of faith and commit our lives to each other. Movies like Pretty Woman, Maid in Manhattan or Back Up Plan are many women’s ultimate love story that they wish to have. Yes, we know it’s unreal but do we really?

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Row Row Row Your Boat

I have come across a number of different philosophies, theologies and theocracies during my life which address the way we live and the purpose and meaning of our lives. Many of these ideologies have influenced me in a variety of ways but one philosophy/ideology that has really struck a chord in me is the notions and thoughts of Taoism. In all its incarnations, Taoism has come into contact with me in both in its infinite simplicity and its absolute difficulty. It is much more than just a philosophy of life, it is a philosophy of being.

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Stop & Breathe!

Strange title and you’re right. It is strange but it’s so true. When an obstacle occurs, what do most of us do? React! I can guarantee that our reaction to the situation doesn’t make it better. It probably creates more stress, anxiety, bitterness etc. So why react when we know our autopilot response actually backfires? Sadly it’s how we have been programmed through our upbringing and the influence of society. In order to have a different outcome; an outcome that will make the situation better we need a different way of responding. So what’s that? Stop& Breathe!

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Running Away from You

Seems like an odd title for this blog but I feel it’s an apt heading for something I have seen time and time again. How often has a person run away from their “problems” only to realise too late that the problems they face are themselves? How many of our problems are actually created by our own minds and the fractured elements that make up ourselves?

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Perspective

A couple of days ago my day started badly. I thought I had managed to snap out of it but as the day went on I came across more and more hurdles. It is usually the accumulative small stuff that gets to us especially when it is simultaneously all happening at once. I was suddenly asked to attend a Cantonese meeting next week on the day I had debate training with my advanced debaters.

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Who Do You Turn To?

Do you ever feel that when the shit hits the roof those that you thought would be there aren’t? It’s interesting that it takes life’s hurdles for us to discover who we can rely on. Lately I’ve been feeling lost not so much on the physical level; and I find it hard to turn to my girlfriends simply because my shit isn’t the usual stuff that we cry over like career, men or family issues that most of us seem concerned with 24/7.

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How much do we love money?

As I’ve just started a new job it has me pondering about why I work? Clearly to have money. But why do we need to work 40-60 hours a week? Most of our waking hours is spent at work and not with people we love or things we enjoy doing. When death comes it won’t matter how much we have earned or what job we had so working our lives away seems pointless.

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Do You Love Yourself?

I have been looking through some old photographs of myself both past and present and was stunned at the obvious changes I have seen and made. The girl of 10 years ago had such different priorities and values to the girl of today. The girl of yesterday didn’t take care of herself. She wasn’t concerned with exercise, health or healthy eating. The girl of yesterday cared so much less for herself and gave all her energy to others. The girl of today has learnt to value herself and has placed her health and fitness as a priority.

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Being Fake

While being in the hotel in Marrakech I have come across some interesting people. One lady in particular struck me. She has the body, the presence, the wealth and the intelligence but beneath all that what I see is a lady who isn’t being true to herself let alone others. Our conversation about lavish lifestyle exhibited a need for her to advertise that she has done the glamorous restaurants and hotels.

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Expectations

This morning I went out at 4am to watch the Egyptian sunrise. I got up, tired but full of expectations as my Brit had seen it a few days earlier on his own and told me how spectacular it was. I waited and waited and waited, full of expectation. Whilst I waited (with the Brit) a random cat turned up. It was pretty windy and though the cat was ultra-friendly it was also ultra-playful. It continued to amuse us both as the sunrise started to throw its first streaks of yellow across the sky. Though the sunrise was nice, it was the cat that stole the show.

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How Do You Express Love?

We say “I love you” often. We sometimes express it through action whether it’s buying someone a new dress or helping out with the household chores. I recently read “The 5 Love Languages” by Gary Chapman which explains how each person expresses love differently. Some need a lavish gesture to know they are truly loved while some need quality time together with their loved ones. Others still need constant verbal affirmations that they are loved. What’s important is to know how people around you or your loved ones need to feel loved because you could be doing all sorts of things to express love and they will fail to see it as love.

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Breaking fears

A year ago I tried scuba diving then a couple of months after I went to the ring and had my first Muay Thai fight. I definitely had some fears and at the same time excitement but I kept telling myself life is boring if it’s lived in the comfort zone. The aftermath of those experiences has pushed me to try other things that I fear. My fear of being underwater goes way back from watching James Bond movies especially The Spy Who Loved Me and I vividly remember turning my head at every water scene. This clearly showed my fear of water.

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