My nephew in Langkawi

Early this month, we took my five-year-old nephew to Langkawi, an island located northwest of Peninsular Malaysia. It was his first plane ride, and he couldn’t be more excited.

When the plane was taxiing on the runway before takeoff, he asked impatiently, “Are we in the sky yet? Are we?” As the plane lifted off the ground, he raised his little arms and cheered. We all smiled.

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Summer in the US

I underestimated my intolerance for heat and humidity, and wrongly assumed that summer in the United States would be a breeze for a tropics native like me. For six weeks, the merciless sun threatened to sprinkle more freckles onto my sunscreen-covered face, while sweat dripped like a thousand steady streams down my back.

Despite so, I sought out the sun for the gorgeous display of light and shadow. And the sun provided such clarity – not only to the images captured, but also to the mind. The tendency to bare all, emotionally, is higher under the bright sun.

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Ottawa Canada

For full set of photos, please do check out my website at: Ottawa Canada.

The Power of Innocence

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My whole family has not had an overseas trip together for at least 20 years, the reason being my dad does not believe in wasting money on holiday and my mom has difficulty walking. However, with one line uttered – “gong gong (Mandarin for grandpa), come see Lucille!” – all hearts melted and a journey of more than 20 hours of traveling was set. My sister did give birth to two cheeky, adorable kids. Seeing them run out to hug us when we arrived had stamped into my memory, I kept playing that moment in my mind when it was time to leave. I guess what I want to sum up is, this is a holiday that I wasn’t too excited about, but seeing my niece and nephew at their cutest age was worth the money spent and the torturous flight.

A little update…

After a week of seemingly endless errands, which included trips to the tax and utility companies’ offices, an intense, last-minute packing and a hurried handover, I left Beijing.

I thought I would be overcome by a flood of emotions when I stood before the boarding gate, but on the early hours of June 25, after tweeting a farewell note, all I craved for was a good rest on that delayed red-eye.

This flight is barely two weeks ago and yet I cannot recall at all now which side of the plane was I sitting at, and who was the passenger next to me. Did I watch a movie on the plane? What did I eat? Did I manage to catch some sleep?

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The countdown has begun

When I was posted to Beijing, China, three years ago, I had worried that I might give up and run away before the initial two-year contract ended. I was not confident that I would do well professionally, so leaving has always been my perfect fallback plan. “If it doesn’t work out, I’ll just take the next flight back to Malaysia,” I told myself. To be honest, it was more than just a comforting thought. I was so convinced that I would eventually take that route and never look back.

And then six months slipped past. I was still hanging in there. I hit the one year mark and looked forward to the second year. Then I extended my contract for another year. And now, the time has finally come for me to leave.

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Getting recognised

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We live in a world where cameras, Photoshop, and even mobile phones gain better attention than the photos. The photo itself seems to be the last thing people notice.

So I was tingling with excitement where I received an email informing me that my photo had been chosen as the daily winner for a campaign by Hong Kong tourism board #INEVERKNEW. Although I didn’t win the first prize, which I was secretly hoping for, the fact that this photo got chosen meant someone noticed my work. I was excited not for any other reasons, but simply because someone noticed, and liked, my photo.