Reading revolution: 5 ways I’ve upgraded my reading

I like new things but when it comes to reading, I am old school and conservative. I don’t do eBooks because I like the feel of a paperback. I don’t venture outside of my preferred genres. In fact, it’s taken me a long while to incorporate even a few innovations. Here are five ways I’ve modernised or upgraded my reading in the last couple of … Continue reading Reading revolution: 5 ways I’ve upgraded my reading

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

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

Under (or over) the influence

The difference between a celebrity and an influencer I’m not sure when we stopped using the word celebrity in favour of the word influencer, but I feel like it happened around the time Instagram took off. It seems that once you have several thousand followers, you’re an influencer. Which means you’re kind of a celebrity. Which means you’re famous. Which means … what exactly? For … Continue reading Under (or over) the influence

The H is silent

My first name begins with a silent letter so alliteration exercises in primary school weren’t fun. “Happy Hsu-Ann” doesn’t alliterate and “super Hsu-Ann” looks like it doesn’t alliterate even though it does. Yet the silent H is a familiar and essential part of who I am. (So is the awkward pause and ensuing mispronunciation every time someone realises they’re going to have to read my … Continue reading The H is silent