… some failure in life is inevitable. It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all – in which case, you fail by default.

Failure gave me an inner security that I had never attained by passing examinations.

Failure taught me things about myself that I could have learned no other way.

I discovered that I had a strong will, and more discipline than I had suspected; I also found out that I had friends whose value was truly above rubies.The knowledge that you have emerged wiser and stronger from setbacks means that you are, ever after, secure in your ability to survive.

You will never truly know yourself, or the strength of your relationships, until both have been tested by adversity. Such knowledge is a true gift, for all that it is painfully won, and it has been worth more to me than any qualification I ever earned.

– an excerpt from J. K. Rowling’s Harvard Commencement Address

I could not agree more, there are failures in my life that are more valuable than any winnings and triumphs. I have recognized that I would have been a different person otherwise…

And friends, yes, those friends that stay… they are those who will stay for the next 100 years (even if we all cease to live that long enough, at least they are willing to be there!).

I would like to beg you, dear Sir, as well as I can, to have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language. Don’t search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer.

– Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet (Letter Four Worpswede, near Bremen July 16, 1903)

SURVIVAL KIT ANYONE?

Be your own person. Never let the goings on outside change or influence you, if the inner self is not convinced to do so.

Be independent without being aloof or “alien”.

Learn to communicate, and never be afraid to express yourself.

Be helpful and courteous.

Always check your self-respect in whatever you think, say or do.

Respect others the way you want to be respected.

Take a few minutes off to reflect and ponder the many little things in life often taken for granted like good food, good music, good conversations over a cup of coffee, etc.

Never loose the seeds of hope and faith in your heart.

Smile and laugh, and eat!

Spend time with the persons you love.

Look at the night sky and gather some fresh air, once in a while.

Enjoy and go out to unwind but be responsible to look after yourself, after all you’ll be better off without unnecessary worries. Simply said, have clean fun!

Never harm and deliberately cause pain to others. And just in case, do not allow pride get in the way of repairing damages done.

Never abuse and use people for your own good and interests.

Know and accept who you are and be the best of whatever you can be!

Love and inspire people as much as you can!

Be true and fair in all circumstances.

Remember that real happiness comes with clear conscience and a healthy sense of meaning and fulfillment.

Read good books and learn from experience!

Never be afraid to stand for what you believe is right. Fight for the truth and you gain dignity.

Humility is the key to greatness.

Be a healthy receiver of criticisms for oftentimes we fail to see ourselves objectively.

Remember that the BIG GUY is looking after you. He knows every little fear, hope, pain, and happiness in your heart.

– Whew, I wrote these a few years ago… I cannot really remember when but i sure sound a little more preachy here. I have always been idealistic I think. But now I ask myself, is this still what I feel? I guess, most of it yes. But I myself still find it difficult to survive in this world of complexities even I have these survival thoughts…

And so perhaps now, it will not be as easy for me to recommend these things to people I meet… but ok, this is here… and maybe it can help…

One Fine Day…

Location/Activities: Banyan Condo Lunch, Samba Street Gig at Orchard, Shopping at Bugis, Dinner at BluJaz Cafe, Party at St. James
Characters: Helen

Jowil, BJ, Dedeng
Najwa, Dorien, Malou

Supporting Roles:
Sabrina and Michael

got the USB stick

Hi Helen!

Thanks so much for the pictures.. and more important, for all the nice memories we shared!Hope this USB stick finds its way back to you again. I’ve put all my pictures from Desaru, Pulau Ubin and KL on here, as well as everything from Cambodia. Unfortunately I haven’t added labels to the Cambodia pictures yet… but ok, at least you have them now. Back home I’ll try to add titles and then I can send them to you again if you want. Hopefully I can scan the negatives of my other photos and upload those somewhere later.. there’s a couple of pictures I am very happy with so would be nice to share them.

Then there’s the album by dEUS. You’ve heard a few songs already but here’s the rest. It’s not their best album though (in my opinion), so if you enjoy this you should certainly look into their debut for example. I’ve also added the latest album by Tindersticks, one of my favourite bands. It’s called The Hungry Saw. They just released this new album while I was in Singapore (I missed the tour back home, unfortunately) so I’ve been listening to it a lot here. I think it’s great. Maybe you like it too 🙂

Hope to see you again one day.. and let’s stay in touch.

🙂