It was a frigid, wintry night in the desert, located in the red centre of Australia. As the raging campfire consumes the firewood, its source of life, the ferocity of the flames reduced over time, beginning as a lively blaze, before gradually losing its life to become licking tongues, till it eventually died out into the greying ashes of the firewood. And with its demise, the warmth began to wane with every passing minute. Stripped of a heat source, the cold of the night seeped into my swag, a tightly wound tent with a mattress lining on the base, fashioned in the manner of a sleeping bag. Not long after, I begin to stir from my half-awake slumber.
Continue reading Space and Time
I bow down to pray
I try to make the worst seem better
Lord, show me the way
To cut through all his worn out leather
I’ve got a hundred million reasons to walk away
But baby, I just need one good one to stay
~ A Million Reasons by Lady Gaga
Travel has very much defined my life in the past few years, having embarked on numerous ‘big’ travels (self-defined as one month or longer) spanning 4 continents, approaching 40 countries and an estimated 100 cities. Each ‘big’ travel has coincided with various milestones in my life: exchange semester in Europe, graduation from university, leaving my first job in Singapore and selling my stake in a backpackers hostel.
After stepping down as a business owner of the backpackers, I decided to move to Melbourne and begin a new life overseas. 2016 has been the first full year I spent in Melbourne. Primarily due to the lack of any major happenings in my life, 2016 is also the first time in the past few years where I had not done any ‘big’ travels. Inevitably, I begin to reminisce on my past travels and my mindset following each milestone, which could be described in the following words: exchange in 2011 (inspired), graduation in 2012 (hopeful), quitting my first job in 2013/14 (idealistic) and ceasing to be a business owner in 2015 (thoughtful). If I were to chart the positivity of these ‘one-word’ adjectives over time, it will be on a downward trend. Likewise, the pattern has persisted into 2016, for I will use the word – confused – to describe my current sentiments.
Continue reading Life in Melbourne (2016 in Review)
I have run, I have crawled
I have scaled these city walls
These city walls
Only to be with you
But I still haven’t found
What I’m looking for
But I still haven’t found
What I’m looking for
~ I Still Haven’t Found What I Am Looking For by U2
A year ago, I had intentions to write an article on chasing your dreams and following your passions, beginning it with the fast-beat pop/rock song, Counting Stars by One Republic: “Baby [I’ve] been praying hard, said no more counting dollars, [we’ll] be counting stars”. Instead, 365 days later, I am writing an entirely different article, starting it with the rock/gospel anthem, I Still Haven’t Found What I Am Looking For by U2.
Continue reading I Still Haven’t Found What I Am Looking For
Double rainbow spotted at Lake Matheson, near Fox Glacier
If you were to choose a colour to describe yourself, what will it be? Will you choose red as you lived your life with passion and energy? Or will it be blue to reflect your calmness in even the most stressful situations? Perhaps, you might prefer white as you have purity of thoughts and seek high standards in life? Or, could it be black to symbolise your stoic and unnerving personality? Or are there no appropriate colours and you consider yourself to be colourless – void of any identity and ordinary in all aspects?
In Murakami’s book, “Colourless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage”, the protagonist Tsukuru is colourless amongst his colourful friends, whose names all contain a colour in it. On the surface, his childhood friends have vivid personalities in-sync with the colours in their name: Aka (Red), Ao (Blue), Shiro (White) and Kuro (Black). Only Tsukuru (Colourless) is dull and unremarkable. However, as the story goes along, you discover contradictions and perceptual differences, which to me are the central themes of the novel.
Continue reading What Colour Are You?
“We got a lot of hope and the best intentions
Stuck inside of our own conventions
There’s nothing I could say to you
That means as much as what I do
Oh woah oh
Where you wanna go oh
It’s about that time, that you and I
Ditch this town, start living right”
~ Wanderlust by Nick Gallant
(In Part 1, I detailed the apprehensions and thoughts I had prior to undertaking solo trips. Ultimately, all my trips had turned out fantabulous and the worries were always for no reason!)
This is Part 2, and now, I shall try to explain the merits of travelling alone and why it is so addictive for me. Of course, solo travel is not always smooth sailing. Sometimes (or more like rarely), you might wish for someone to be around you and I will also pen this down.
So, let’s get started. First off, let’s try to understand why I love to travel alone!
Continue reading Why I love travelling alone (Part 2)