When Soul Sisters Visit

My Soul Sisters around the world are fundamental to my well-being. Although we live in different countries and can never really plan our next meeting, we remain connected on all levels thanks to all the modern forms of communication. Whether it is a daily text message, a funny photograph or saying, someone always manages to brighten up my day. Phone calls are special, but visits even more so. Yesterday I had the privilege of spending time with one such Soul Sister who is in town for the briefest of times and managed to squeeze me into her busy schedule. Here’s…

Bridges of Berlin: Rosa-Luxemburg-Steg

Or as the proper title should be: Lichtensteinbr├╝cke Re-discovered, since I already wrote about this particular bridge. Berlin is one of the few metropolitan cities that I did not fall in love with instantly, like Vienna, Paris, Prague, or Delhi. It is a rough city with scorching summers and winters that make you aware of every little bone in your body. The bus drivers are rude, the racism is prevalent, it is incredibly difficult to find an affordable apartment for under 900EUR/month, and so on, BUT if you are into art, photography and theatre, it is incredible. Not to mention…

The Secret Admirer

Life is full of surprises, some good, some bad, and the trick to enjoying it all in spite of the outcome is acceptance. I met an old friend for dinner last night and had a marvellous time catching up. Family and careers prevent us from meeting more often, so when we do, we definitely make the most of it. The greatest blessing of having such friendships that span almost 30 years, is that we know each other’s backgrounds, culture, family quirks, values and everything that has happened in our professional lives. There is a genuine interest in the professional as…

It was another dark and stormy night…

I absolutely despise that opening line, but I kid you not this time. Last night, a massive thunderstorm ravaged Berlin and brought the airports to a standstill this morning. The weather service warned of another storm this evening, and in spite of the warning, everyone I commuted with on the underground and the bus this morning wore the lightest of clothes. I, on the other hand, looked like the overdressed duck showing up among the flock of flamingos with my rain jacket and umbrella. The old Girl Scout leader in me still follows the motto be prepared! So here I…

The Zen of Mud Wallowing

There is a saying I grew up with: el hombre propone y Dios dispone (man proposes, the Lord decides) and this seems to be a recurring theme in my life as of late. The weeks following Easter offer several long weekends to either travel or be visited. Since I don’t work on Fridays, this means an extra long weekend for me to write, catch up on some much needed sleep, or on the rare occasion, be hostess to out-of-town visitors. There used to be a time in my life when entertainment at home with lavish five-course dinners was a regular…

Commuter Adventures: Tattoos, Torn Jeans & Ticket Police

Maybe it is a generation gap or my conservative Asian upbringing, perhaps even the fact that I lived in cities where tattoos were usually associated with street gangs and crime, but I have trouble accepting the full-limb tattoos that seem to be very common these days. If people choose to tattoo their chest or backs and these parts remain covered for the better part of the day, I don’t really care. But I find it very disturbing when I have entire arms, legs, necks and hands fully tattooed facing me. Getting a tattoo is a very personal choice, and it…

The Stranger in The Light

There are photographers who put a lot of effort into planning the shot, calculating the light, and sorting out all the equipment beforehand in minute detail. Then there are those who just walk out the door without an iota of planning or even a concept, with a second lens and back-up battery if they even remember, and shoot whatever the soul stumbles upon. I belong to the latter. I must confess, I am very indisciplined about carrying my camera around with me 24/7, and the number of times I regretted this decision don’t seem to be enough to get it…