Category: Travel

"Harry Potter and the Cursed Child"

The ups and downs of moving to a different country

Almost forgot about this blog again! I’ve been nursing a migraine on-and-off for the past several days, so I’ve had a lot of time to myself with my own thoughts.

It’s been a busy couple of weeks, as I try to settle into my new job and my new country. I think now that I’ve gotten a better sense of how things work in this part of the world, I’ve been trying to figure out if I regret moving across the Atlantic Ocean.

The answer is that I don’t know yet.

In defence of the TTC

I’m one of those people that tries to avoid arguments and heated discussions. I mean, they’re fun sometimes – pretty much when you try to trash my team in front of me. Like nope, only the fans themselves can trash their own team because they’re the ones who actually experience the pain when it happens, therefore they are allowed to trash their own team – but when it comes to netizen comments or social media comments in general, I try to avoid them. In fact, the last time I left a YouTube comment was a positive one.

But today, because of the TTC emergency shutdown during morning rush hour, I came across a friend’s Facebook post who shared a news article about the incident, and commented by saying that the TTC is trash and they’re not doing enough to become a better transit system.

Now look, I ride the TTC five days a week. My commute is 1.5 hours long. That’s 3 hours everyday. 3 hours that I could use more productively. So if I have the right to complain, I have it, but to say that the TTC hasn’t done anything to better themselves in the past few years is a lie.

Oh, the places you’ll go!

Look at that! Two blog entries in one week! This must be some sort of world record! I kid, I kid… But before I dive into today’s blog, I just wanted to let everyone know – because obviously, my blog sees loads of regular visitors, so that’s why I’m using the word “everyone” – which reminds me that I haven’t set up Google Analytics on this new domain yet – that I reread my previous blog entry and made some edits to it. My blog entries are statistically unproven 99% word vomit, which means I don’t reread or edit my blogs after I click “publish”. Apologies if you’ve noticed any pronounced grammar errors in my past entry!

Anyhow, I met up with two of my longtime friends today, and on my way home, the get-together made me daydream about all the places I wanted to visit in my 20s and 30s.

Having left Toronto, I now appreciate its multiculturalism

A month later, I think I am finally ready to talk about my experience in Brazil. This blog won’t list all the different things I did in Recife and in Rio de Janeiro, but instead, it’ll talk more about the aftermath of it. As I had mentioned before, I had taken a lot of photos of my two-week vacation in the country, and you can simply visit my Facebook photo album here if you would like to take a look. But to be honest, most of it is just me standing in front of a beautiful view looking out into the Atlantic Ocean. There were a lot of palm tree photos too. One of the first things I remember saying to my Brazilian friends when I arrived in Recife was, “You guys have palm trees!” Being Canadian, I have never seen a palm tree up close, and I saw so many of them in Brazil! Some palm trees were so tall, they were deemed the tallest in Rio. (I’m talking about the ones from Jardim Botanico do Rio de Janeiro!) It seems so silly that I was making such a big deal out of seeing palm trees but these little things made my trip more enjoyable.

Extreme over-worrying

I’m about two days from boarding my first ever airplane in over 20 years (which means my first flight ever, because I was 3-years-old on my first one, so I don’t remember anything about it), and I am just so anxious about it. What if I go to check-in and they tell me my seat isn’t actually confirmed, and Orbitz has been fucking with me the past six months?! What if I get some really bad seating partners?! What if they lose my luggage? This is so nerve-wracking.

And I realize that I haven’t even updated my blog yet, about how I graduated from a seven-year-long undergraduate career earlier this month. I’ve been so positively obsessed with the World Cup the past couple of weeks. Maybe I’ll do the next day or so. I’ll just have to get up really early today… In maybe six hours.

Returning to the December days

The past month has been really crazy.

But firstly, happy new year! I’ve committed myself to five new year’s resolutions so far, but I won’t be sharing them here just yet! There is too much to document from the month of December! And I think I’ve already started to forget some of the things that happened, so I am relying purely on my Foursquare calendar check-in history to make sure I’ve got all the important points documented.

Travel newbie

As mentioned in my previous blog, I will be going to the FIFA World Cup Brazil 2014 next summer! I will be travelling alone for my trip to Recife, but will meet up with a friend in Recife for a couple of games (hopefully), before heading off to Rio de Janeiro for (hopefully) a quarterfinal game. Luck has already been on our side yesterday, when the World Cup groups were drawn, and our only confirmed ticket so far will be for the United States vs. Germany game on June 25th. We got incredibly lucky! I had a feeling we would end up watching a match featuring less prominent teams, but somehow we managed to get the Group of Death as Group G. Insanely lucky.

Instagram

  • Did you even see it, if you didn't see it in a theatre during public release? 😏 That mahjong scene still made me tear up the second time around. And definitely appreciated Henry Golding even more the second time around too. Thank you, @warnerbrosuk, for bringing the UK release date forward two months. I can't imagine what the wait would've been like if #CrazyRichAsians was to be released in November like it was originally planned. 🇬🇧 Also, is my skin really that dark in real life?! Good grief, I tanned some several shades this summer. 😩
  • Storybook vibes. I want to go back. 🏞️ (Note to self: I think the poor photo quality is because I was on a motor boat that legit barrelled down the fjords at like record speed, so fast the camera couldn't stabilize fast enough. 😭)
  • It was a sunny Sunday in Brighton. But in just one week, summer is over. Back to miserable ol' English weather... 🇬🇧
  • Repsweating: "It's the idea of sweating it out over representation, that feeling of: 'I don't even need to like this thing, but I need it to win.'"⁣ 💪🏻
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That was me going into the movie. I've been positively obsessed with this movie for the past two months - reading all the spoilers, following all the critical reviews, checking box office numbers every day... I needed it to succeed in North America because I knew that if it succeeded in Canada and the United States, it meant that we could get more of these projects. More Asian actors in the Western hemisphere starring in Western film projects. ⁣
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What I didn't expect though, was how anxious I would actually end up feeling when I sat there in the cinema lobby watching all the audience members file in into the movie. Majority of them were white. There were Asians (East Asians), sure, but most of them were white. When I realized this, after having sat down in the theatre, I started feeling a bit nervous. Would this UK audience react to this movie the way the US audiences have? Would this UK audience react to this movie the way I wanted them to? Would they understand the references? Would they get the jokes?⁣
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If I was watching this movie in Toronto, I wouldn't have been as nervous. I knew that the movie would succeed. East Asians are everywhere in Toronto; we are the majority visible minority group. And having grown up in a multicultural Western city like Toronto, we were like Asian-Americans. We would come out to support this, no question about it... ⁣But I'm not in Toronto, I live in London UK now.⁣
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I've been through so many experiences here in the UK where I've been made to feel ashamed of my culture, that when I sat in the theatre, I realized that this film experience would be way more personal than I thought it would be. Now that it has succeeded in the States, and the sequel is a guarantee, I needed an almost all-white British audience, in a country vocally proud of its imperialist history, to really embrace and enjoy this movie. ⁣
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(continued below...)
#CrazyRichAsians
  • Squid and shellfish risotto. 🐚
  • When #London gives you free hamburgers, you go queue up and eat them. 🍔 #GeniusGlutenFree