Archive for the 'General' Category

Paris

July 30th, 2011

In Paris and feeling ultimately lonely. The City of Lights? Yeah. Also the City of Love.

This is a city designed for love. Romantic walks along the river, cheese and wine, florists…heck even a bridge full of love padlocks.

Walking the streets at midnight and for every 5 groups you see, only 1 are not a romantic couple.

Well here’s the thing. I love Paris. So beautiful and so well preserved. The food is great, the drink is amazing and the girls are pretty! There’s also nothing like the French language which sounds so romantic. Wonder if someday I will get to take advantage of this?

Train our love

January 30th, 2011

Train our love
that it may grow
slowly…deeply…steadily;
till our hearts will overflow
unrestrained and readily.

Discipline it, too,
dear God;
strength of steel
throughout the whole.
Teach us patience,
thoughtfulness,
tenderness, and
self-control.

Deepen it
throughout the years,
age and mellow it
until, time that finds us
old without,
within,
will find us
lovers still.

-Ruth Belle Graham, Never Let it End: Poems of a Lifelong Love

Persistence v Determination

January 14th, 2011

So I said to Reine today that I’m a persistent kinda person whilst she’s the determined sort. I said that without thinking too much about it, but as I pondered that statement further, it left me to think about who I am.

I’m a worker, I’m a do-er. If things need to be done, I’ll get it done. I don’t think that takes determination, or at least, I don’t think determination is the key recipe. Persistence and patience is all that is required. I’ll grind the result out.

But a determined person goes out there and aims for the stars. She’ll get the things done even if they don’t need to be done, purely because she wants to. Maybe it’s the prove a point, maybe it’s for self benefit, maybe it’s just for the thrill of it, but in any case, I don’t think I’ve ever felt that kind of drive before.

Why do I work hard? Because I have to. Because I need to. Why do I need to? I don’t know. Not yet anyway. I’m sure the answer will come.

For now the only answer I have comes from the parable of the talents (Matthew 25:14-30; Luke 19:12-28). Aside: I just found a link to an interesting discussion on the two bible passages. Will look at it when I have more time. God tells us to work hard and to use the gifts he’s given us for His glory. I hope I am doing that in my day to day life. I know I have much to improve on.

I still have a long journey to walk but I am confident that with Him holding me up and being my rock, I can lift my head high and walk with determination. Maybe that’s what I was lacking the past 25 years?

Resolutions for 2011

January 11th, 2011

So this post is about 10 days late, but it’s given me time for self reflection to try and figure out my goals for this year.

Looking back at my post this time last year, I have to say that I am actually very proud of myself for 2010’s achievements.  OK, so I’m not the healthiest person on the planet nor have I mastered mandarin, but hey, I found something wayyy more exciting. I found Jesus! Hey dude, that’s COOL!

My resolution for this year is to continue that journey with God. Although it’s both exciting and strangely terrifying, I know it will be rewarding. I want to grow in faith, to learn what it really means to Trust the Lord and to give Him all that I can. All relationships take time to cultivate, including this one. But something I’ve learnt in all my relationships in the past, is that if I put the effort and work in, it’s totally do-able!

Let’s start by resolving to finish the One Year Bible by the time 2011 is up. I’ve made a good start so far (10 days in…) but let’s try to keep it up shall we, Hsiang?

Other resolutions? Well, I return back to London in less than 3 months’ time and begin a new stage of my career. It will be a huge challenge stepping  up to the role and taking on more responsibility. And it will be an even bigger challenge because I want to ensure my priorities in life don’t change. God is important and my resolution for this year is to ensure that the balance is maintained (or improved in His favour of course).

I want to try and continue my mandarin classes. It will take lots of discipline for me to sign up for those courses again, but hopefully I will look at this post and be reminded that it is is something I have to do.

Let’s try to be healthier too. Throw in a couple of gym sessions per month (I said month, not week, coz let’s be realistic about this).

Ski shopping

February 22nd, 2010

I can’t believe how much ski equipment costs! After grilling Ash and Weng for advice and tips on various ski shops/brands/equipment, I finally decided to venture out to Covent Garden to browse the various stores.

Just a tip for those first-timers – this is fairly late on in the ski season and most shops have started to sell out their range and sizes! I struggled to find stock of the right sizes for me…

So I eventually ended up spending most of my money at Ellis Brigham. Okay, I know it’s not the cheapest, but they had such a fantastic range and such helpful staff members that I just decided to take the plunge. Plus I am really hoping that I will truly enjoy this sport and that the investment will be worthwhile.

Less than two weeks to go and I’m really excited!

Hong Kong – TVBu in real life

February 17th, 2010

More than a month later I’m still dreaming about my trip to Hong Kong. I think I had such an amazing time there that I just had to write about it! Plus I’m just riding the adrenaline which comes with recently-rediscovering the joy of blogging.

I had only decided barely a week before flying that I would spend New Years’ eve in Hong Kong. What a rushed decision! I could not believe myself clicking “Buy ticket” on the Cathay Pacific website. I can barely remember the blur on that 27th morning when I made my way to the airport (partly due to the fact that I had barely slept the night before, but mostly from the adrenaline).

I actually saw this with my own eyes:

I know what you’re thinking. “What’s the matter with him?! It’s an AIRPORT. Has he never flown before? It’s just a photo of a walkway and a lot of people.” Well yes, that’s all true. And yes I’ve been to a number of different airports before. But I had seen this airport in a HK TVB series about a year ago – Triumph in the Skies!

Yes, it was based in HK and naturally there were many shots of the airport there :) That was my first glimpse of TVB in real life!

And so began an interesting 5 days there. The MTR, sitting on one of those old red taxis, walking along the very busy streets! All that was lacking was a camera following me…

Queen’s Cafe

HK at night

HK at night (2)

I don’t have favourite moments, but I definitely enjoyed LKF and the egg tarts! If I ever get the HK secondment, I think that Tai Cheung egg tarts will soon become my daily staple!

It felt like such an amazing dream I didn’t want to wake up from…can’t believe it happened. Still can’t believe it happened. Really.

A message?

January 15th, 2010

Is someone trying to send me a message? Since my last post quite a few Christianity-related things have popped up around me.

Perhaps it’s just a heightened state of awareness and it’s purely my consciousness picking up things which are near the front of my mind these days. But then again, it’s just weird.

It started out with the book I was reading – Gandhi’s autobiography. Now I’ve been reading that book since mid-2009, and as I’m not a slow reader, it’s just purely that I wasn’t that interested enough to sit down and read. But about a week ago, the text suddenly jumped up at me as Gandhi started exploring his own faith, questioning Christianity and spoke of his own beliefs in God. What astute timing… coincidence 1? Maybe.

Coincidence 2 – Last Thursday, my first day back at work, there was a booth at Silks where colleagues were promoting a series of lunchtime talks called “Christianity Explored”. Title is self-explanatory. I was interested in attending, but with so much work it would have been very difficult to step away at lunchtime. Plus I feel like this journey for me, at least at the start, will be a fairly individualist and personal, engaging only close and trusted friends.

Then there was that article about Tiger Woods’ faith. According to the journalist, Woods is a Buddhist. But due to his recent transgressions, it was suggested that conversion to Christianity could offer Woods guidance, forgiveness and redemption. True that in Buddhism there isn’t the One Being to say “I forgive you”. Of course it’s not the same in Buddhism. It’s not about sin. It’s about recognising the cause of suffering and addressing that cause.

It’s most interesting because I don’t think I really understand the concept of Sin. Maybe in layman terms, but not to the extent the Bible teaches it.

And most recently was just last night when Reine and I engaged into a conversation about the history of Christianity, Islam and Jewism. We wiki’d quite a few pages like “Bible“, “textual criticism“, “Malaysian Chinese religion” (which turned out to be quite an amusing read!), “Chinese deities“, “Chinese gods“…

I felt like we were engaged in a proper conversation. It made me feel good to be teaching and educating her! I don’t want to be her lecturer, but her mentor – be someone to help guide her through life and grow as an individual and as my partner.

Back to the original purpose of this post, I don’t know what it is but I’m so curious these days. I want to learn and to know more! Not just about Christianity, but about other religions. I want to know what I believe.

Welcome 2010

January 10th, 2010

So here we go again, blogging.

For me, it’s just an avenue for release, nothing more. I don’t expect anyone to be reading this, and hopefully no one is tracking my RSS feed! I just want an online journal for myself. Somewhere to type my thoughts. I don’t know where else I’d put it!

There comes a point at the beginning of every new year when I am writing and have to pause, scratch out the old date, and insert the new date with the correct year. 2010 was no different. I managed to get through9 fulls days without having to re-write the date, but on the 10th day, the eraser was brought out and the date corrected.

What are my hopes for this year? I’ve had no easy 2009 that’s for sure. No it’s not the famine and the wars I’ve suffered, no plague or (serious) disease. But I still endured countless sleepless nights filled with stress and worry. I don’t want that. I truly don’t. Everyone says it’s a part of growing up. Well yes, it may be true that growing up necessarily reveals more and more problems in life, but the better part of growing up is learning how to deal with these problems effectively!

So I had turned to Buddhism over the past two years to try and understand the reason for my suffering. Whilst it has brought strength and wisdom in my daily affairs, I still feel a part of me is lacking the answer I seek. I don’t know what question it is I am asking, but there really is a void somewhere in my heart. It sounds cliched. Ah. Religion. The age-old debate.

Well for me I think there’s no harm exploring. There’s no harm in seeking knowledge. Since Reine is so keen on finding out more, I shall take the opportunity to join her. Let’s see what Christianity has to offer. Let’s see why about a third of the world’s population believe in this faith.

So the other two New Years’ resolutions I’ve made to myself are

a) to become healthier – eat more fruits, sleep earlier, become fitter; and

b) to learn mandarin – I really want to work in HK for at least 6 months of my life. I recognise that language will be my number one barrier and it’s only up to me to try and address this problem!

Here’s to my attempt and to a fantastic 2010!

Smart People

June 5th, 2008

This movie was brilliant! The most refreshing I’ve seen in a long time. The thing I liked most about it was the oddness of the whole thing. There wasn’t the false pretence of “perfection” that one often finds in Hollywood movie families. Instead, the three that form the Wetherhold family were a collection of completely different personalities, drawn together only by their kinship and the unexpected problems that life brings.

So much of the movie could have been a reflection of reality. The characters each have their own personality, brought to life by some excellent acting, directing and scripting. As time passes in the movie, each character realises something new about life, and yet clings like a rubber-band to their personalities. They don’t dramatically fall into some magical realisation of “the Truth”, but instead grow and develop slowly (as most people do) as life progresses.

Dennis Quaid plays the cliched professor who clearly knows his stuff, but lacks the social skills to impart his knowledge. In fact, there have been many a times when I’ve sat in my philosophy lecture wondering whether the person yapping away in the front of the hall had a life outside “office hours”. Ellen Page was a genius at her work, playing the unhappy, bitter, incredibly intelligent girl. I am told she plays a similar role in Juno, and was remarkable in that movie as well. Although I cannot remember Page in any other movies, I found out that she played Kitty Pryde in the third X-Men movie.

The only criticism I have to make is the choice to cast Sarah Jessica Parker. She clearly does not belong in the category of “serious movie” and should very much remain in the fairy-tale genre that has made her so famous. Like many actors and actresses who become instantly famous by a TV Series or movie, she will forever be acquainted with Carrie from Sex and the City. She will either have to change her face or improve her acting to break from this bubble.

iPhone 2

June 3rd, 2008

I’m really excited by the launch of the new iPhone that’s to be announced on June 9th. It’s supposed to be thinner, has more battery life and have way more functions than its predecessor. I was pretty convinced I’d be going for the Blackberry Bold in September, but since Apple is sneakily launching the iPhone 2 this early summer, I may well consider choosing the Steve Jobs option. The only thing I hope is that I can afford this beauty!

Link

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