To the Good Ol’ Days

After the excited initial feels of being in a new country, the stark surroundings and lack of familiar faces started to strike…

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It was only in the first few weeks that I met the other exchange students. The first friend I befriended was this one guy whom I would come to know, at a medium level (RHS – Sunny Sun). The smartest guy around, but also the goofiest and is often all over the place (literally). He introduced me to other people, and I will always remain thankful for that. Too smart for his own good, and too silly to realize that. Always bringing laughter in every sitting.

The other 2 are my mains! POPO and FIFI will always have your back. Whether it is in the form of sharing cake with you, cooking food for you, or just travelling to wherever you want. They are down.

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Sight: Charles Bridge, Prague
Mains: Popo & Fifi & Gigi
“Why walk when you can selfie?”

I am also thankful that in the beginning I was able to befriend some of my roommates. It was cool being able to live close to friends whom you could cook and chat late into the night with. They were older, wiser, and most often than not, very fashionable in an eccentric way. Overall an awesome role model for me. We all come from different backgrounds, but we’re also to meet during this term at the same University. Although I believe the best of times are often had at the most spectacular places, it is most likely the people whom are around, that make those days extra special. I learned to cherish this fact over the course of my exchange.

Here are some snippets of the residence I lived at while in Bath. I am also glad that I was able to find a family in Church and grow closer to each one of them. There is too much to say about everything that happens on exchange, but I would like, day by day, annotate it to you.

Although I’ve walked this path multiple times. That day I took these photos, I could sense that when the day came I took my last step away from this place – I would miss it dearly • Thornbank Gardens: during this period, I learned to fend for myself. This will always be my home away from home. Close to P, J, S, F, M, S, S, J, P, G & A.

IMG_1904That time I couldn’t stop playing with my phone. I realized my pictures would be nothing without knowing the stories of the people who litter my every album and populate the places I’ve been to with their smiles.

Thanks for coming along this ride with me. Europe, you’ve instilled a spark in me that I thought had long been put out. I know I’ll be back soon, don’t forget me just yet!

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Children of God

This past weekend was our church’s annual summer retreat. Though I had my reservations about attending, I must say, the uncertainty that I initially had, was completely uncalled for. Having the opportunity to attend this camp was truly the highlight of my Summer. Being able to talk with and also hear from Dr. Sean Ho about being children of God was the awakening I needed.

Life is often full. Full of everything one wants to fill it with. Loved ones to be with, appointments to tend to, and even needs that oneself wants to be filled. In the midst of all that, we may lose out on who we are. Who God had initially called us to be, but we brushed to the side, because of our own grand plans; our dreams; our “callings”.

We are lucky. That we even know of Him. That we were given the privilege to follow Him. That we are able to love and be loved by Him.

Words truly cannot describe my emotions that I have felt through the endurance of this camp. I can only say: Thank-you Lord for letting me attend. To letting me be amongst the midst of others who love you greatly. To be able to worship, praise, and also pray with them was a blessing. So thank-you Lord.

So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. [Galatians 3:26-27]

So take this heart, Lord
I’ll be your vessel
The world to see
Your life in me.

Passing of the Times

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Often times, life passes you by, and you never really end up noticing this loss.

Interaction of human relationships: friendships, acquaintances, loved ones, spouses, brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers, old and new ones; they’re what bring the connectivity and warmth that humans claim to be their own.

Life usually has too many things happening all at once. We never truly stop and see what’s around us.

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Do you see? Do you notice? Do you care? Water droplets gliding off those black toed shoes as they pace quickly though the rainfall. The little kid squealing with delight at the sight of the hilarious clown. What about that woman whom only has herself to keep company every night? Or the child who struggles to find a place of shelter and food every night? Do you understand?
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Go to the shorelines of beaches and lakes. Breathe in the air that is so different from city air. Without the smog, without the second-hand carcinogens. Just pure, clean, untainted air that we grew up with and slowly changed our bodies with each breath we took in.

Do you notice? Those without freedom. Without love. Without hope. Without that drive that implicitly keeps all of us going. Though some of us may not realize it until that one moment in life, we are all moving to hopefully end up attaining that one thing we desire most. The journey is ultimately what it is about. It is never the destination.

My Other Half

The stars they are plentiful. But we will find our other half. It is proclaimed. 🌟

An overall good guy. Makes me laugh. Appreciates the simple things in life. Enjoys nature and it’s exquisite beauty. Can live simply yet happily. Always smiling. Wouldn’t mind holing up inside reading classically good reads with me on rainy days.
Values family and spirituality. Understands and can hold his own in arguments with yours truly. Can justify why he believes in what he does believe in. Even with unspeakable faith, I want to be able to trust and believe all that he says.
Christian. Loves our God. Is willing to have a life with me where we devote our future to spreading the Gospel and bettering communities so others can meet and know our Lord.
Unselfish. Just. Merciful. Kind. Honest. Intelligent. Understanding. Patient. Caring.

Taylor Swift – Riptide [Vance Joy]

“This cowboy’s running from himself, and she’s been living on the highest shelf.”

I have never truly embraced Taylor Swift’s songs as I am one who does not like the “poppy” music that everyone else seems to be so into. I want grit. I want soul. I need something that you came up with when you were immersed in inspiration, when you felt beauty, love, care, and understanding, all at the same time.

Swift had caught my attention and kept it with this song she so beautifully covered.

Will you please continue doing these, heart-wrenching, endearing covers?

What If

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The original movie title had been coined “What If”, but in theatres throughout North America, it had undergone the name change to “The F Word”. For some, upon first hearing the title may believe it to be implying the swear word, however, in actuality, it is referencing “friend”.

This movie revolves around the friendship of two Torontonians – Wallace & Chantry. After Wallace discovers Chantry has a boyfriend, he decides to not continue the friendship, as he believes nothing will come out of it. However, circumstances bring the two back together, and quickly, the audience is drawn into the depths of the pairs’ instant connection in everything: Fool’s Gold, magnetic word conundrums, Whip Cream.

At parts where it is apparent the love that Chantry and her boyfriend of 5 years share is genuine, you cannot help but also root for Wallace to win over Chantry. It is also apparent that the pair occasionally work to restraint themselves to never cross the limits that are there out of respect for Chantry’s boyfriend.

Sadly, a friendship between a girl and a guy almost always, does hit road bumps.

It is bittersweet sometimes as throughout the movie you can feel the problematic thoughts that Chantry internally faces when she is around Wallace. Questions of following her heart or following her mind. Sticking with what is familiar or trying something new. We all face these dilemmas now and then, but never truly getting a definite answer of whether the choice we make is the correct one or not.

A simple and funny romantic comedy. Does it end happily? Or bittersweetly like many endings as seen before? I think this is a movie that deserves a solid 7/10 and for those new couples, or even for those friends whom are borderline “dealing” but know something more will inevitably emerge – hit the theatres for this Radcliffe-Razan love story, maybe it’ll be the push that opens up something new.

A short clip from the movie on how to make “Fool’s Gold”