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
I’ve always fancied being a tour guide for a time. Sure, it would get old pretty soon, but for 3-6 months it’d be awesome wearing the brightly coloured jacket, holding the umbrella, and taking groups of tourists around my hometown (or adopted city), providing snippets of history and local lore. The other day we put on a travel-themed digital event for some of our supporters … Continue reading I’m an anti-slavery tour guide. Sort of.
Australians boast the inglorious irony of being the best off people in this pandemic and yet we’re potentially the most resentful about travel restrictions. Gap years are standard before and after uni, many of us look forward to our annual overseas trip and retirement will often consist of cruise ship hopping. But before COVID-19 derailed everyone’s travel plans, I was already wrestling not so much … Continue reading Nomad no more
I watch the weather where I was
and where I want to be;
too cold for summer, too hot for winter,
too comfortable to be close to anywhere … Continue reading Mediterranean (from Tarifa to you)
Australian New Year’s Eve traditions mostly involve drinking hard, watching fireworks and calling it a party. This is followed by spending 1 January sleeping it off. Where Christmas Day is family time, NYE Down Under means time with friends. In Ecuador, I was introduced to the tradition of making and breaking monigotes (mon-ee-GO-tez): life-sized replicas of yourself and people you know. These effigies are also known as muñecos … Continue reading NYE lessons from Ecuador
This month Cambodia marked the fortieth anniversary of the fall of the Khmer Rouge. It’s prompted me to finally share on this blog something of my visit there late last year. My 9-day trip involved a 5-day cycle tour (with law firm Wotton+Kearney in support of International Justice Mission), plus time in Phnom Penh and Kampot. * Day 1 Day 1 of the Cambodia Cycle Challenge … Continue reading Cambodia: Cycle. Sweat. End slavery.
I like to say my boyfriend is a recovering Anglican. He’s actually not even Anglican, he just happens to go to an Anglican church and I just happen to enjoy having a go at Sydney Anglicans. What I really mean when I say he’s recovering is that he is no longer doctrinal about his faith and how he practises it – in fact, he’s ardently against legalism.
The other day my dad kindly informed me that if I ever stood for politics I’d need to renounce my Malaysian citizenship. This, of course, occurred in the context of the dual citizenship debacle that has kept Australia entertained for the last few months. Now I’m not sure how to feel about the fact that my father thinks a political career is a real possibility … Continue reading Going for glocal
There are lots of things I love about you, Sydney.
I love your dazzling waterfronts, stretching out from the Sydney Harbour that the tourists see, all the way west up the Parramatta River – simply spectacular, even on an overcast day.
I love your cafés, even if you’re no Melbourne.
And I actually love your trains, even if people are always complaining about how these are always running late.
When I thought I might be leaving you for good last year, it was easy to list the things I would miss.
But loving things about Sydney isn’t the same as loving Sydney.
Now that I’m back here with you again, I’ve realised that I … Well, I don’t love you.
Unfortunate, hey? Continue reading “City love (and lack thereof)”
Is it just me or have I seen Vivid before? In Canberra. Continue reading A Canberran perspective on Vivid