Collaterally damaged, collaterally blessed

Incidental damage As a kid, I’d come across the term collateral damage but it wasn’t until I studied the “War on Terror” in high school that I learned its true, ugly meaning. A military term, it refers to incidental harm caused when attacking an enemy, especially to civilians. When you pick a military target you know there are risks of other damage being inflicted and … Continue reading Collaterally damaged, collaterally blessed

Memories of my grandmother

The grandmother: revered There is something about grandmothers that verges on the folkloric. I recently read this article titled “The Sacred Wisdom of our Abuelas“ and it’s not the first time I’ve heard how a person’s grandma inspires them. My husband and my most recent housemate both speak with deep love and admiration for their grandmothers, particularly the paternal ones. It occurred to me that … Continue reading Memories of my grandmother

Whatever happened to Alternative Ann?

Compliant me, defiant me I have a friend who used to call me “Alternative Ann” back when we were in high school. I’m actually not sure why, because I’ve always seen myself as a compliant, wallflower sorta gal. Yet I’ve become aware over the last year or so that I actually possess a (frustrating and often ridiculous) contrary streak. I hate hype, celebrities and the … Continue reading Whatever happened to Alternative Ann?

Tim Tams and wholemeal bread: more Spanish words that expand my faith

I’ve been reading the Psalms in Spanish. Scripture is my main connection to this language these days and I absolutely love how I can glean new insights from a text I’ve read countless times. A few years back, I wrote about the six Spanish words that changed my faith. Recently, I found two more to add to this set. Both are words I discovered on … Continue reading Tim Tams and wholemeal bread: more Spanish words that expand my faith

The real reason I speak Spanish: how trifles can transform your life

People are often surprised and curious that I am fluent in Spanish. It is a random language for an Australian – let alone an Asian Australian – to dedicate themselves to. We’re a multicultural but otherwise monolingual kinda nation and learning Spanish presents you with just the one job prospect: teaching Spanish. I enjoy surprising and impressing people with this. I enjoy that it’s a … Continue reading The real reason I speak Spanish: how trifles can transform your life