2016: a year of blessings and blessings in disguise.

Two thousand and sixteen. What a year it’s been. Wow. Just wow. School is finally out. I’m home early for the first time in MONTHS. I’ve lived my life in the fifth gear since late August and the time has come to unwind, take it easy, take stock and welcome what 2017 will bring. 

I had one serious rough patch earlier this year, but… it all ended very quickly. Other better opportunities came out of nowhere and life picked up without giving me any real chance to wallow. 

So indulge me, as I retell all that was grand and glorious in my life this year.

1. Singapore and Cambodia: my roots and my Hindu heritage

I’ve lived away from home for 9 years now. Generally, I have no desire to go home. But occasionally, that old familiar friend ‘homesickness’ pays me a visit. I was really really glad I went back to Singapore for the summer holidays. It’s the most I’ve enjoyed ‘home’ in my life. Old friends. Hawker fare. And coming to terms with all the blessings in disguise that made me the woman I am today. 

Eating mooncakes at the annual mid-autumn festival. The ones in Yokohama’s Chinatown just don’t cut it. 

And of course, Cambodia. The most unexpected of all holidays – when I got there, I knew it was exactly where I was meant to be. 

What a country. The food. The temples. The vibe. The people. It’s my favourite Southeast Asian travel destination so far. I’m not Cambodian, but Hindu culture is very much alive in Cambodia. My time there was akin to a beautiful pilgrimage.

Wow. Just… wow. An experience I will cherish forever. 

Mandatory tourist shot complete with mineral water bottle.
2. Love

I’ve been privileged to have had so much love in my life this year. At work and at home. I received SO MANY handwritten Christmas letters from my students this week. I held back tears of joy as I read what they had to say. 

I’ve had jobs that have paid more, but teaching has been the most rewarding. Just don’t call me ‘Sensei’ on my day off, thank you. 

3. The act of coming home

It’s been five years since I’ve actually enjoyed the act of coming home. Since home has felt like a sanctuary: a place that’s nurturing and peaceful. The past couple of months have been…just amazing. Daily grind by day. Fortress by night. I’ve decorated the apartment to my taste, had numerous house guests and gone about my usual business of cooking, eating and enjoying life. 

What can I say – life is good. 

Moving out from my old apartment in Hino in September. I will never look back. 
4. Starting this blog

It’s nice to write again. It really is. I currently talk for a living, so it’s good to be quiet, sit with my thoughts and write them in what is hopefully a methodical fashion.

I’m also really grateful to everyone who’s sat down with me and taken the time to talk to me. Thank you SO MUCH for trusting me enough to tell and share your stories. I’ve truly truly enjoyed hearing your thoughts. We’ve laughed together and grown together.

Unfortunately…I made a couple of you cry. My apologies. I know I like to ask the tough questions. But still, a big THANK YOU for letting me ask them. And a bigger THANK YOU for answering those questions, even if it was off the record. 

I look forward to hearing more of your stories in 2017.

5. Mystery Christmas Holiday

I’m not going to say where I’m going cause I want to blog about it when I get there. But it’s someplace I want to go. I’ve been curious about for a while now, and I can’t wait. I have a couple of days till take off. In the meantime, I have to clean the house and pack my bags. Oh the joy… I bloody hate packing.


2016. What a year it’s been. I’ve worked hard. Played hard. And now I’m off to enjoy some of my hard-earned money. 

Till next time. 

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