100 subscribers!

We walked past this Filo restaurant yesterday and so decided to try it out today. It was good! I’m glad we decided to try this place. It was one of those really tiny places with only 8 seats inside, and they had none of the social distancing measures in place 😂 And they only took cash. But whatevs, the food was good! And there was a ton of it too. We pretty much had to take half of it home!

Service was really nice and friendly too, unlike so many other places in HK. I’m sure I have mentioned the poor customer service in HK before, so this place was a pleasant surprise. I’d definitely go back 👍

Filo food! 😋

And while we were there, I checked my YouTube stats: I reached 100 subscribers today! Woohoo! It’s not the largest number, but it’s my first big milestone, I’m sooo happyyy 😁

It’s the journey, I tell you. I’ve grown so much this year in so many ways, and I’m so happy about that. Like I’ve said before too, I’m so grateful for these first subscribers because they still found value in my videos, despite the crappy audio that I struggled to get right for sooo many videos! Despite the not-so-great quality of my videos; and despite my not-so-wonderful performances. Thanks to these guys for sitting through my dress rehearsals and still finding value in my videos 🙏

Video, lunch, gratitude, video

We had a video chat with friends from Melbourne today. The restrictions there are strict. I feel so sorry for them and for Melbourne / Victoria in general 😔 I can understand that they don’t want a repeat of what happened back in July when they were seeing literally hundreds of new cases every day, but they’re now back down to single digits, so I would’ve thought more easing of restrictions would’ve been allowed. Apparently the Victorian government doesn’t see it the same way 😔 It was good to see them, though. Video chat is the best we can do during these crazy times.

We then went to Sheung Wan for lunch. N felt like laksa, so we went to this Singaporean place that we’d never been to before. It was a good choice 👍 There are sooo many food choices here in HK. I’m always amazed as to how so many can stay in business. But many do, so they must get the customers!

The restaurant made me miss SG. If I had the choice, I would definitely move back to SG in a heartbeat. I loved that city 🥰 HK, not so much 😆 But still, I’m going to make the most of our time here. I still see this opportunity to live here as a privilege that not everyone gets to experience 🙏

N then went to the gym in the evening and I filmed my next YouTube video. I would’ve liked to have filmed two videos tonight, actually, but it took so long just to film just the first one that I was too tired to film a second one! 😔 Yeah, that two videos a week idea ain’t happening 🤪

Appreciating each moment

I wasn’t feeling too bad today, maybe because I got enough sleep, despite it being yet another interrupted one 😒

I gave my parents another Facebook Messenger tutorial today, this time on groups. I kept my cool today, surprisingly. There were moments when I probably did lose it a bit, but they were far fewer than usual 👍

I just employed the same thing as I do with Kitty: just appreciate every day that they’re still around. It’s not always easy keeping my cool, but for some reason, it worked really well today. I don’t know for how long they will still be with us. It could be two days, two years, or twenty years. So for however long they are still here, I’m going to try my damndest to appreciate each moment.

Still going strong

Kitty’s just not letting me have a good night’s sleep 😔 I should just let you know when I do have a good sleep, because they occur much less often these days!

Today she wanted more food – at 3:15am. Because what better time is there to eat than smack bang in the middle of the night?!?? 🙄 She had licked her bowl clean, so I had no choice but to give her some more food. Luckily I could get back to sleep today, though, unlike yesterday’s tossing and turning.

Anyway, have I told you about how I reframe these disruptions? I am just grateful that she is still alive to wake me up in the middle of the night 🙏 I still remember the vet three years ago now, when we were living in SG, emailing me while we were overseas, saying that our pet sitter had brought her in, and that she was weak and wasn’t eating. Her condition was pretty serious and potentially life-threatening, he said. We were in Sydney at the time, and I still remember being really upset that I might not see her alive again 😢

We went to see her as soon as we could once we got back to SG, and miraculously, she perked up as soon as she saw us, and even the vet was surprised. He really didn’t think she had much left in her.

And here she still is. I am still grateful every single day that she’s still going strong. She’s almost 90 years old in human years, and she can still attack me, so that’s pretty impressive! 😄

I’m going to go and give her a big hug now – while also being careful not to be scratched yet again! 😆🤗

Pure luck

I wasn’t feeling all that great today, so I took a bit of a nap this afternoon. Not sure why I was feeling ill. Lack of sleep? The heat? Lack of food? All of the above? But I felt better in the early evening, thankfully.

I was struggling a bit mentally, though. The Bondi Rescue episode that I watched today had a man who ended up a quadriplegic after an accident in the surf 😞 And he was a dancer too, so he was even more in tune with his body than most people. He was supposed to be performing that evening too, but he decided to go to the beach during the day because the weather was so nice that day. I thought that was a really sad story.

And one of my younger students was testing my patience today too. She bosses their helper around, and today, for whatever reason, the helper didn’t come to attend to her. So then she ended up sulking for the rest of her lesson.

This whole live-in help business is very foreign to me, but it’s very common here in Asia. Anyway, I wasn’t impressed that she started to sulk simply because the helper didn’t come to help her tie her hair up. The helper has other things to do than attend to her every whim, and I didn’t like that she was growing up in a household where she felt like she was entitled to get whatever she wanted as soon as she asked for it 😒 So I told her that she’s a big girl now and that she should be able to tie her hair up herself if she needed to, but she just continued to sulk anyway.

So it got me thinking that this may just be a common occurrence here (in Asia), and I find that really sad. Because the only difference between her and her helper is luck. Pure fking luck. Sorry for my language, but I just feel so strongly about this. How can you possibly boss someone else around like that – at five years old, at that – and just expect everything to be handed to you on a silver platter??

Coning from a western country, I am not used to this (and probably never will be), and this is one thing that I struggle with in Asia. I think a lot of other (western) expats feel the same way. Sure there are those who are more well off in Oz, but by and large, it’s a very egalitarian society. The wealth divide is nowhere near as pronounced as it is here in Asia. And like I said, it is pure luck which side of the tracks you grew up on, so you should be thankful if you did grow up on the ‘greener’ side, and I believe that you should help those on the other side as much as you can. Well for me, anyway, that’s one of my values in life.

Gooooood 😁

It was one of those days where I just had an unbelievable amount of energy, and I took advantage of it ☺️ It just kept oozing out of me non-stop, from first thing in the morning right up until now. It was crazy! 🤪

And gratitude. I also had tons of gratitude today 🙏

We went to Muji (again!) and I finally bought myself a new pillow. I really like the flat pillows that the Japanese seem to like, and I finally found one at Muji. I tried it out on one of their beds in the store and loved it. It was sooo flat! So now I can’t wait to go to sleep tonight and try it out for real 😆

Nothing life changing actually happened today – heck, nothing really even vaguely interesting happened. (Except my pillow purchase. That’s hands down one of the best things today! 😆) I just felt goooood. Man, I wish every day was like today! 😜

Compassion and gratitude

I was feeling all compassionate and grateful today 🥰 I should try and bring in more gratitude into my days, try and come up with three things that I’m grateful for at the end of each day. It’s such a different mindset when you think in terms of gratitude, and I just feel happier when I do. I probably could’ve done with some of this during the week! 😂

The weather was still 💩 so I didn’t really feel like going out today. And then N had a Zoom catch-up with some mates from Sydney at 2pm HK time anyway, so I figured we may as well just stay home. And then maybe go out later in the evening, if we wanted to. Pffft, as if we did 🤣 But I did manage to finish my next YouTube video, and I also got through an episode of Crash Landing On You, my current Korean drama 😆 I need relaxation goals too! 😌

Hopefully the weather will be a little bit better tomorrow, and I’ll actually feel like heading out for a bit of a walk somewhere 🤞

Happier in the midst of all this doom and gloom

All that gratitude from yesterday might’ve paid off, because I actually felt better today! 😊 Even when I discovered that the audio on my latest video was shite! I went to edit the video, only to discover that about half the audio was basically inaudible 😩 I did do some spot checks on the day that I filmed it, but I must’ve just heard the decent sections. Dannnggg… So I spent a bit of time re-recording the video today. But even this unexpected spanner didn’t affect my mood. I groaned for a little bit and then just continued on with my day 👍

So maybe we should all try to be more grateful, especially with the current state of the world at the moment. We are up to 1.5 million cases globally! I really did not expect this explosion in the numbers 😞

HK had its lowest one-day increase in three weeks, with only 13 cases today. SG, on the other hand, had an explosion today, with 287 cases 😱 They’re seeing a huge number of foreign workers infected. So HK is inching towards 1,000 cases, and SG towards 2,000 😔 And yes, HK is still at the top of the ‘leaderboard’ that lists all the Chinese cities and regions by number of people who are still sick from Covid-19. HK has 676, Wuhan 398. Faaantastic 😔 BUT both numbers have decreased from just a few days ago, so that’s promising!

Focus on gratitude

I was trying to focus on gratitude today. I read this on Twitter today. True or not, the sentiment is the same. There are millions of people with no running water, living in cramped quarters where social distancing just isn’t possible. And they will no doubt bear an unfair share of the pain that this virus is imposing on the world. So I was trying to focus on just how lucky we are indeed.

And my mum rang me again today, asking some inane question. But during the call, I reframed my thoughts on this interruption, and so went from irritated to grateful. I decided to remember that I’m one of the lucky ones who still have both of my parents alive and both relatively ok, mentally and physically, for their age. I still get calls and messages from them. One day this will no longer happen, so I’m just grateful that I still receive them. And I know she’s probably bored out of her mind just sitting at home because of this damn virus, so the least I can do is help to alleviate some of that boredom!

Feeing grateful

Yesterday I said I was felling better. Which was true, but that was emotionally. Today I physically started feeling better. I’d been feeling pretty rundown all week, with a sore throat, lack of energy and a headache, so I’d been taking it pretty easy. Today was the first time I’d actually started feeling somewhat normal again 👏 It’s such a good feeling! I always appreciate my health whenever I get sick. It’s something I take for granted too easily, but I really should be thankful for it each and every day that I’m well.

And today, I was also thankful for having moved to Asia and being able to understand China more and more. I’ve always been so blind to the country, having been bombarded with the usual western rhetoric about it for most of my life. But there’s actually more to the country than what the collective west would have you believe.

I was already starting to see a different side to China when we were first in SG, as SG is much more neutral towards China than the west. And so my western blinkers started to slowly be taken off. And now that we’re in HK, my understanding of the country has grown even more. And the escalation of these protests has probably accelerated my understanding more than if they hadn’t happened at all.

It’s not like information about China isn’t out there. It’s just that you actually have to care enough to look for it. And of course, the west (ie Google) doesn’t make it easy for you to find it 🙄 And to be honest, if I wasn’t living in HK, I probably still wouldn’t care so much, and continued to just absorb whatever mainstream media told me about it. But we do live in HK, and that mere fact alone has let me see things that I would’ve completely ignored before.

I have taken one positive out of these protests and I’m not so angry and frustrated about them today. The benefits of gratitude 😆