Hanoi: Celebrating The Simple Joys in Life

public.jpeg

This time 10 years ago I packed my bags,  left Jakarta for Bali with a dream to see the world and work in the entertainment industry. Club Med Bali offered me a part time job for a month in 2009 and I thought oh this could be my stepping stone. I remember I went to the airport by myself with so much excitement, only later I found my girls were waiting for me at the departure gate with a bouquet of flower, love, and endless support. My girls have always been my biggest support system from day one. I love the way they inspire me to be a better person everyday, push me to do better. They believe in me, in my dreams, and how far I can go even sometimes when I doubt myself and feel like giving up. Lady Gaga said there can be 100 people in a room, and 99 of them don’t believe in you, but all it takes is one and it just changes your whole. In this case, I am really lucky to have bunch of beautiful souls who believe in me, open up the doors for me, give me stage to shine and room to grow so I can be the person I am today.

I had no idea what was waiting for me in Bali but I knew it was the beginning of a bigger chapter. It would change my life forever. After working and learning so much for a month, my first manager - a great person, she extended my contract. But when she left and a new manager came to replace her, I learned when someone disrespects you, treat you really bad, make you unhappy and work until 2 even 3 am in the morning for days…you have the right to walk away. I spoke to my HR manager and told him I wasn’t happy, I wanted to go back to Jakarta. They let me go and in less than 2 months they offered me a better opportunity to work in Malaysia. Still, every time I think about that day I decided to quit my job in Bali, I had no idea where I got such courage to leave. I was very young, had very little money, but the biggest lesson I guess whenever I find myself not happy maybe at a certain situation or with some people, I know I have to change it. Happiness has always been my first priority, especially been living ( and going through lots of things ) alone for years, I can’t rely on anyone but myself. I’m in charge of my own happiness. That was probably the first time I learned when you let go things that no longer served you well, you make space for better opportunity and people. Well, fortunately my Bali adventure was sweet and short. In three months, I found home, a new family, I learned so much from my colleagues, my choreographer, and our guests from all around the world. Then life brought me to Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Hong Kong, Florida, Singapore, and so many places I just couldn’t believe I get to see the world. In the last 10 years I’ve moved around quite a lot. I landed a couple of dream jobs, discovered new passions, failed a lot.

Sitting in my bed trying to write this post and think about my journey in the past 10 years, I ask myself if there’s anything I wish I could change or do it differently. Nope, nothing at all. I have no regrets. I am grateful for things happened the way it was, for every ups and downs, delays, failures, experience, heartbreaks and I get to do meaningful things I love every day. And if I had to choose the biggest highlight, it would definitely be the people I met along the journey. In life, you meet people who break you, support, celebrate and love you the way you are, listen and truly understand you. Those who have invested so much in me. Give me a stage to shine, take care, and believe in me… They are the biggest treasure and blessings, also my motivation for me to keep going. While money, jobs, opportunity can come and go, it’s very important to have such a strong, big support system and surround yourself with amazing people.

Isn’t it amazing how one decision can take you to where you are today? Ten years have passed and I still have so many dreams, goals, honestly no idea how to get there but I hope I am still the same fearless, brave girl who left home 10 years ago with confident, passion, and faith things will eventually work out.

In the meantime, I was in Hanoi a few weeks ago. There’s a beauty and joy I can’t even explain with words when I step into a new place or revisit some of my old favorites. If you’ve been to Hanoi before, you probably know how crazy hectic this city. Motorcycles, traffic, buses, backpackers, street food, happiness, and many more. It’s chaotic and sweet in the same time. What I love most about going back to Vietnam, this country never fails to give me a sweet, simple joy. From a cup of egg coffee, a bowl of bun cha, to random conversations with strangers on the street. Life can be brutally hard out there but if you just appreciate the little things and be grateful for what you have…it isn’t so bad. When I sit in a small café, sipping my coffee, surrounded by beautiful people who speak different language then suddenly my world isn’t so small anymore. It’s colourful, vibrant, full of love, blessings, and hope. I just feel at peace with where and who I am right now, where I was and where I am going next. There’s no need to rush, everything has its own time.

public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg
public.jpeg