Week 13 Weekly Roundup: 7 Things I Learned at the Beach

  1. Writing is my ritual and my religion. It serves as a body cleanse and self-reflection tool. I am no longer me without my words.
  2. Reading is my fuel. I feel drained inside because I have failed to give myself efficient fuel for too long.
  3. Give people a second chance, as your first impression of them could often be off. Give them an opportunity to show you their dimensions and multitudes. Give them an excuse to make mistakes and be human around you.
  4. What you can and do expose will not hurt you. It’s what you choose to hide that may come back to hunt you.
  5. Take care of your body and mind. The two cannot be separated.
  6. Learn the past to function better in the future.
  7. Sunscreen is your best protection.

Some things I’m reading

  • Bossypants” by Tina Fey (somewhat intriguing, mildly disappointing (not a compliment). And I think Tina Fey outside this book is pretty genuis)
  • Walking the Streets of Yangon by Bob Percival. Deemed “dull” by my Burmese friend (apparently many of the phonetically spelled out street and store names are incorrect, which can be irritating), but I found the writing beautiful and content useful for an expat like me.
  • Best international destinations for the solo traveler, The New York Times. A limited list, with Thailand being the only Asian destination included, but a good starting point.

  • Buzzfeed, Here’s What I’m Telling My Brown Son About Trump’s AmericaAn Indian mother and her conversations with her mix-raced, Jewish-Indian eight-year-old. A tale about gender gaps, race gaps, generation gaps and many more, all under the protection of love and acceptance.

Some things I’m watching

  • “That’s POTUS!”
  • Borrowed Time, a Pixar animation short by directors Andrew Coats and Lou Hamou-Lhadj. It’s sad. It’s reflective. It’s tear-worthy and jaw-dropping. It’s an experiment of not just animation techniques, but also themes and ideas. It’s a heart-breaking story that I personally, and I assume most people, can connect with.
Is it fair that Director Coats (right) stays behind the scene? With a greek-sculpturesque face like his, can’t he show his face, or his voice for that matter (not that I know what he sounds like but I have a feeling it must resemble an expensive cello), more on the big screen?

Some things I’m listening to

PIC of the Week

Bitches at the beach! | Shot at Lovers’ Island, Ngwe Saung, Myanmar

Shoutout of the Week

  • Ngwe Saung is located 245 km (150 miles) west of Yangon and makes a good five to six hour road trip from the city. Compared to Thandwe, another popular beach destination, Ngwe Saung is a bit more upscale with less traffic and fewer activities (scuba diving and snorkeling aren’t as popular here). The four of us spent three nights at Hotel Lux and killed time by soaking in the ocean (the water was incredibly clean and in late November, it felt warm enough to be like bathing), chilling on the beach and playing soccer with the local kids, all of whom can swim like baby dolphins.
  • I have been using Library Genesis (Lib Gen) to download ebooks since my move. Their collection is extensive enough that only about once every ten searches would I encounter one thing they don’t have. For me, it’s not ideal that I can’t financially support the authors and writers whose work I enjoy, but not-so-popular English publications (and in Myanmar standard, that’s anything that doesn’t have anything to do with Myanmar) are rare commodities in Yangon, so I appreciate I have this online option. Just be aware this website has had legal disputes in the past regarding piracy issues, so if you live in remote areas and/or are desperate for hard-to-obtained reading materials, I’d recommend this as nothing else but a last resort.

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