Sunday, October 27, 2013
I passed the time quite easily with movies on board. After the two (yes, two) Bollywood movies I watch, I felt like they really pulled on my heartstrings like no other. <I watched Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara & Yeh Jawani Hai Dewani>
When Nuncio (the driver) picked me up, I was giddy with excitement. As we drove from Malta International to my hotel, I felt like I was in the midst of a story book. The only way I can describe it (from what I know) is that it looked like Greece meets Egypt.
Checked in at hotel and couldn't wait to take a long, hot shower. Tiredness began to come over me, but I forced myself to get dressed and go out. Went to an Italian restaurant around the corner, but unfortunately found the people to be quite unfriendly. Came back to the hotel ready for bed. Best to get an early night and wake up fresh in the morning!
Saturday, October 26, 2013
Then the final stretch. What I've been waiting for...
I had been so busy preparing for my LOA (leave of absence) that I hadn't really given myself time to become excited about my first trip to Malta.
Contrary to many other trips I've been on and had sleepless nights the night before departure, I slept quite easily this time. I woke up in the morning feeling a bit out of sorts...almost emotional.
There's an Academic Year Coordinators Meeting, and since I'M an AYC, it was a great surprise to know that I would be traveling before the end of 2013. I don't hide the fact that I am grateful. SO grateful to have a job. In the past I have been quite expressive about my very dark phase of trying to find work when I came back from South Korea. The only thing that got me out of that funk was gratitude.
I began in December 2011. Five or six months later, I started getting more responsibilities. Seven months after I started, I was offered a promotion. I assumed the position in January 2013 and in July it was announced that I would be the first AYC to travel to Malta for this meeting.
As many would know, living alone comes with many responsibilities - as little as trying to remember to turn off all plugs and the geyser when traveling for a couple of weeks or more. I did all this - with the help of many lists!
At precisely 10:00, I was on my way to CPT International. A million thoughts running through my mind, but mostly my mental checklist hoping that I hadn't forgotten anything. Before long, I was seated and ready to take to the skies.
Next stop: Dubai or rather "Do Buy" ;)
Saturday, October 19, 2013
Tuesday, October 15, 2013
|Inside Ayasofya in Istanbul, Turkey|
Adhan / Edhan / Azan / Ezan is the Muslim call to prayer recited by the muezzin at specified times of the day. For more info on Adhan, click here.
Hagia Sofia (Turkish name: Ayasofya) is one of the main tourist attractions in Istanbul. I was lucky enough to visit it during my whirlwind day tour a couple of years ago. My blog post on it can be found here.
Hagia Sofia was once a church, then a mosque in 1453. The mosque was turned into a museum in 1964. No adhan had been recited in this structure until 2012! This historical moment was captured and this is it:Adhan in Ayasofya after 50 years! It's quite lovely to listen to. Thank you, Murat, for sharing this with me :)
How many of us worry about what "could" happen tomorrow or the next day? Truth is, we have no idea -or control- over the future. Often, what we end up stressing over what may not even happen!
As I wrap up this day, I just read this, which is so apt:
"Don't take tomorrow to bed with you."
Iyi geceler xx
Monday, October 14, 2013
It was a Monday – my first day back at work after my two-week leave. I was on a high! It was great seeing all my students again, meeting new students and catching up with my colleagues. I was pleasantly surprised when one of my students came to give me a beautiful "welcome back" bouquet of flowers.
I stopped next to him and we exchanged random banter about the flowers. In no less than two minutes, a lady joined our company. I’d seen her around the building as well. She was petite, had grey/white hair around her face and wore a cautious, nervous-looking smile. They two were husband and wife.
“Our apartment is very messy right now, so we wouldn't want to invite you in,” spluttered Thomas. The words came out slowly and he seemed to run out of breath easily.
“You shouldn't do that. You’re a young working woman and there are two of US,” he said.
“Actually, I do,” I replied.
“…well, do they give you gifts too?” he continued.
1 x vegetable soup
1 x white rolls
They could be my parents.
They could be me.
Thank you for the "food" the other and and your thoughtful note.
You are young and kind. But let me at my age teach you something - everything can be carried beyond a reasonable limit, so that it is not longer practical or wise.
[He went on to tell me about a young and generous Chinese man who has recently been forced to sell his business and is moving back to China].
...He was too generous to other people.
You are not a business woman either.
That said, we are delighted to know a person like you - and a neighbour. We shall get together some weekend
At our age, we have some "problems" with "life" which in all your joyful youth, you will not understand.
We will go out for coffee!If Thomas and Heiko are uncomfortable accepting gifts from me, and are happy just to accept my friendship, then that is what I will be happy to offer.
Remember, angels come in all shapes, colours and sizes - and these two people, since meeting them, have taught me something quite remarkable. I'll keep you updated as things develop - even if they continue via handwritten letters!
Monday, October 7, 2013
For me, today, living alone means:
Craving something warm & decadent for dinner, but settling for tea. Not even with a slice of toast - it would've taken too long to make(!!)
My TV hasn't been receiving any signal and frankly, I couldn't really be bothered!
...instead, I was in bed at precisely 19:20 with 3 issues of PSYCHOLOGIES Magazine. Pages of mental stimulation. Oooh the things that excite me! (Seriously?!)
The tea I just had has made me even hungrier, but there's no way I'm getting out of bed now. Unless there are those gorgeous red Lindt balls on my kitchen counter. I'm kidding, ok.
So here I lie in bed, wondering what my life would be like if I came home to a family. Without a doubt I know I'd prepare food for them, if need be. I actually get pleasure in making for others. But for myself? Pssshhttt!
Living alone has its perks, for sure. But I think the benefits of co-living are far better.
I'll also use this time to update my Gratitude Journal. While I have been saying my daily prayers of gratitude, I have neglected actually writing them down.
Best I get to it then...!
Good evening to you!