Isolated thoughts

Month: June, 2015

Vietnam

2 – 7 June 2015

Vietnam is one of the Asian countries that I’ve never been to before. It started pretty casually, my cousin randomly asking me if I’d like to visit Ha Long Bay. At that time, desiring a trip to somewhere I’ve never been before, I said yes. I don’t think I regret it. Vietnam is definitely one of my favourite countries in the region. The people, culture and beauty of the country will definitely be bringing me back for more one day. Hopefully, alone.

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After checking in and getting lunch, we decided to go for a cooking class which was pretty damn fun. We cycled from the school to the local market and g or the chance to order the ingredients in Vietnamese. Interesting fact: the Vietnamese simply ride their motorbikes into the wet market, which makes for an extremely easy shopping trip. Witnessed the skinning of chickens as well. For a city kid, it was fascinating watching and listening to tales the older generation told of farming in olden Singapore. They boiled the chickens alive to make plucking the feathers easier. Alternatively, they slit the throats and collected the blood for other uses. Dog meat seems quite popular there as well.

Rode back to the school and sat around listening to travel stories. It’s quite inspiring how one travelled around the world after college. The idea of getting a high flying job and earning big bucks for the future almost absent from their mind. It’s awesome but I don’t think I can do that to be honest. Maybe in another form one day.

The wonderful thing about the school was that it was located beside the river opposite Hanoi. The sunset was amazing.

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Food was awesome as well. I loved the way their houses were made. The long alleyways where the children play after school and the general openness. In an ideal world, I’d live in such a quaint and peaceful place.

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I’m skipping day 2 and 3 because they were spent at the lake and in search of a supermarket.

Ha Long Bay was the main highlight of the trip. It lived up to expectations. Sadly, the tour guide wasn’t that great at english. It was slightly frustrating as there was hardly any information about the isles or about the history of the area. Spent the evening reading A Feast of Crows at the top deck and watching the stars (or airplanes).

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I just wish that I had more time to appreciate the wonderful world around sometimes. In the hustle and bustle of life, I realize how much I’m missing. So many fleeting moments of beauty and peace that are bypassed just because of the relentless drive to do something. I suppose that’s what makes travelling such a transforming experience. I really live in the moment and am present in all ways then.

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It poured back in Hanoi. But I was blessed with an awesome room and view. Had great street food and a horrible manicure before heading back the following day. Ban mih is seriously my favourite food. Have also developed a love for spring rolls and barbequed meat. Cheap beer makes everything better as well.

Vietnam was great. I live for those moments.

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Smear

I dreamnt of applying makeup and smearing it all over.

Setting off tomorrow for Hanoi. Its going to be my last trip before school begins I suppose. Unless I manage another short getaway. I feel extremely unprepared this time, barely looking up on what I want to do and knowing little to nothing about the country. The beauty of being in a foreign land (for me) is partially the freedom. Away from home, experiencing, learning, and enjoying.

Printed out a shitload of documents for the scholarship. My last chance at something that is really important to me. I despise the idea of taking up a loan and being in debt. Living off parents is up there on a list of things I don’t want to do as well. Too bad money doesn’t grow on trees and there ain’t no sugar daddy to pay these bills. I’ll pull through. Eventually. Though there is definitely a need for dependence on them for the next few years.

Was helping my mom vet through some documents. I feel so useful for once doing something to help me parents instead of it being the other way around.

Finally made my decision. I don’t know how it’s going to turn out, but I’m going to give it my best shot. To be honest, I do find learning and studying enjoyable. The mental stimulation is something that I fancy and take pride in. Knowledge makes me so thirsty for more. There isn’t a end to this. I just hope that I find joy in the subjects that I’m studying. The development of my social and presentation skills can’t hurt either. I’ve always found it frustrating to “limit” myself to one specialisation. This makes me so, so glad to have the flexibility to pursue two different yet cohesive subjects. It’s the educational experience that counts and I think I’ve chosen the school that would best help me achieve what I desire. There’s this certain thrill that goes along with the fact that its my mom’s alma mater too.

I’m losing track of time. Have to reach the airport in the early morning so I was asking my dad about the arrangement since I thought my younger sister had school. Totally forgot that its the June holidays. Hopefully there won’t be too many kids on the cruise. Am planning to laze about reading the Game of Thrones and the Narnia series as well. I recall reading the Horse and his Boy 10 years ago. I wonder how it’ll change this time round.

Just finished a Clash of Kings tonight and I can’t wait to start on the next book. Might consider watching season 2 but I’m quite tempted to go back to review season 1 as well. Well, I’ve all the time (other than working, driving, and studying) to do so. My time is running short and I dread the idea of not enjoying it before school starts. At the very least, during this long break I’ve done a few noteworthy, useful things. Completed a teaching internship and decided not to pursue that path, passed my piano grade 8 (damn great achievement because I suck so badly), and have exposed myself to so many different things through interviews, tests and jobs, learning so much more about myself and about how things work in the process. *pats back*

To 6 days of enjoyment and relaxation! Cheers.