A trip up to the mountain top

It was a cold, 5:30 morning when we touched down at TaoYuan Airport. I can still remember the cold breeze blowing through my hair and it is one of my favorite kind of weather. We went to take the next bus from TaoYuan to TaiChung as our first stop for this trip is CingJing.

CingJing is one of the places where time just seems to pass slower and the pace of everything around you just slows down. Waking up surrounded by old buildings, mountains and the fresh morning air just makes us love that place even more. For a city kid, I alng ways long for such experiences and still enjoy every second of it.

However, as we were traveling on their national holiday period, the traffic jam up to the mountain as crazy. We got a cab from TaiChung station to PuLi and then bus up to CingJing. It was a grueling 5 hours bus ride up to the mountain area as the congestion was so bad. We just slept throughout the whole ride up with lots of bumps and rocky roads along the way.

And finally we got off to our stay for the night: Sea of Cloud Vacation Villa. We quickly checked in and had a quick wash up before heading out to the sheep farm. The sheep farm was a walkable distance from our accommodation and I have to say that the view there is amazingly stunning. But our trip there was jeopardized by the weather conditions. It was drizzling, raining and pouring at different stages and it was difficult for anyone to move about in those conditions. So my advice would be go there early and check if there are any holidays or special occasion that might cause traffic congestion up to CingJing. Then see sheeps and have a horse/pony ride.

We left the farm near closing after taking a few pictures and heading up the mountain for some food as we were starving. We went up to have snacks at street stalls; mainly 盐酥鸡 and 甜不辣. We then went further up to have proper food which a bowl of local beef noodles. The broth was quite good with the strong beef taste and a filling portion of noodles. After which, we got to the nearest convenience store to get some snacks and drinks back to our apartment.

We had a pretty rough day 1 with most of our time spent traveling up to CingJing, but we the view there and the experience there made up for it. Can’t wait to blog again for day 2! Until then see the pictures below!

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24 years ago

6th September 1993

If someone told me that 24 years ago, I would be enjoying my life; having a wonderful family, having an amazing girlfriend then fiancé, still doing well in my career and studies, I would have never believe it. 

My family has always been an important part of me. Growing up, my parents didn’t have the easiest time and it shaped me to be a strong willed person. We were not rich but we are happy. A kind of family where I wish my kids would grow up in. So of course every birthday, I would celebrate it with the parents that started this whole thing. 

So let’s start this whole celebration from when it started. Shall we? ☺

The celebration began one day before my birthday when my friends: Daphanie, Melody and Adrian wanted to meet up for lunch. Little did I know, they invited my fiancé along. It was a nice surprise and I was genuinely surprised. They even got me a cake and a present which I love so much. This friendship with them is really one of the best thing that came out from working in HSBC. 

Later that night, my fiancé met up with me to bring me out from a birthday celebration. To my surprise, she brought me to F.R.I.E.N.D.S cafe. F.R.I.E.N.D.S has always been one of my favorite dramas to watch and recently she started watching it too. So she booked us a table at the cafe here in Singapore. So let’s see… what about the cafe. 

The cafe was quite a distance from the train station but from the moment I stepped into the cafe, I was amazed. The details of the cafe was like the set of F.R.I.E.N.D.S with the famous couch that they sit in the cafe, Monica’s apartment, the fusball table and much more. It almost feel like you’re in the set of it’s actual filming. We then grabbed a seat with a great view and background and order food. The cafe was showing episodes from the drama itself as we got to dine and watch some of the best episodes of F.R.I.E.N.D.S and I even got to watch my favorite one. However, the food there is a little pricey so please prepare your wallets. 

On my birthday, my fiancé brought me out for a nice brunch at Lola’s cafe. It was the perfect brunch date for us and the food was delicious as usual. Everything was as I remember it to be and the food was still fantastic. Then I got to chill and relax a little before my family went out for a celebration later in the evening. 

We went to have a simple dinner and even went to Swensen’s so that I could have my birthday ice cream! 😂 I even got myself a present; A dartboard! All in all, I enjoyed my special day with the people I love. I know that I wouldn’t trade these with anything else in the world. Thank you everyone for the wishes. 

To the ones who love me for everything I am, I thank you with all my heart. 

The day when you finally get it. 

There will come a day when everything comes in place; all the big and little pieces fix themselves and together they form a perfect picture. As most of you already know, I proposed to my girlfriend not long ago and it was everything that people said it to be. 

Nerve wrecking, surprises, tears of joy; all of these building up to one word. When that word became the most important word in your dictionary, you know that you finally got it; you found the answer that you have been looking for your whole life. 

Many would understand that something so beautiful and precious like this don’t come easy. Sometimes it depends on luck, timing and chemistry. Through failed experiences in love, we gain and bring it forward with us. It shows that you accepted the past and go on to receive the future. However, sadly speaking, that cannot be said for all of us. 

Some of us are stuck in the past and finding it difficult to move on; or rather they won’t let themselves move forward. Most of us have a hard time accepting and moving on because we fail to see how everything could turn for the better, stuck thinking that that was the best they could ever get or deserve. Now I’m telling you that it is not true. 

You deserve better if you wish for better. 

Don’t ever put your happiness in another’s hand; or rather allow people to make you happy but don’t give them the right to take it away. Yes we will be sad, yes we will feel down but that does not stop us from choosing what we think we deserve. If you believe that you deserve to be happy, then who in the world out there can tell you otherwise. 

You make your own choices so learn to live with them. 

It’s been a while since I chose sadness. It doesn’t mean that I would feel sad every now and then or rather I would not allow myself to brood over it for a long time. 

We always deserve so much more. We deserve to be happy. We deserve to make our choices. Stop feeling sorry for yourself and pick up all these shit and move on. 

Onwards to better days ahead. 

I found the one. 

07/07/2017

That was the day where two hearts got connected as one; the butterflies went out of control; and I got down on one knee and asked the most important question of my life:

“Will you marry me?”

It didn’t take me much effort to figure out that she was the one for me. Every little things just comes together; it just adds up together; slowly but surely that’s how I know that she is the one. 

There so many things I can say about her; kind, sweet, loving, understanding, and the list goes on and on. But I guess the thing I love the most is how well we fit together as one. That feeling when you complete a puzzle; the lyrics to complete your song; the other half of me. 

Both of us been through a lot individually before we met. From the countless heartbreaks and relationships we been through, the missteps that we took, the experiences that we gained and lesson that we learnt; everything that happened brought me to where I am today. I would say that the journey wasn’t an easy one and it sure wasn’t the simplest one but I’m glad I got there in the end. 

Everyone who knows me knows that I’m a helpless romantic. Trying my best to have everything as sweet as possible and keeping the spark between us everlasting. And so when I decided to propose to my girlfriend, I wanted to make it the best one for her. It all started in late May this year and I started with shopping for the ring and planning for that day. Choosing the date wasn’t much of a thought as I decided on 7th July 2017 as our parents had theirs on 8th August and 9th September respectively. 

As I wanted to keep it a secret, I only revealed my plans to a few of my closest friends and people that I needed help from for my proposal. Through a few weeks of shopping and planning, it was pretty hard for me to contain my excitement. I kept it private and intimate with a simple design of balloons, fairy lights, flowers and most importantly the ring. 

In the end, the moment arrived. I told her my feelings and how I feel about us. She was shocked as I took a step back and got down on one knee as I uttered the following words:

“Germaine Chee, will you marry me?

Her face was in total shock which proved how well I hid it from her and it took her a good few seconds for her to reply a resounding “yes“. We hugged and kissed as I placed the over-sized ring into her extremely slim finger. After which we got to our photo shoot and order delivery for dinner. I popped a champagne to celebrate and damn wasn’t that a night to remember. 

To be honest, I think that we are still young and have a long way in front of us. The road ahead may be difficult for us but whenever I feel her presence beside me, I know that I have the strength to carry on. So who cares if the road ahead would be rough and tough for us, as long as I’m holding her hands, I feel that there’s nothing we can’t face together. I guess that’s the power of love. 

And I finally can say it out loud: “I found the one.”

Simple days are over.

In a few hours time, I will be attending my first lesson as an University student and damn it has been too long. I delayed my studies for two years before applying to further studies as I did not have the fortune of paying my school fees. So these two years, I worked hard to find myself jobs to earn my fees and finally, I’m enrolled into this year’s class. To be absolutely honest, the least of  what I’m feeling is excited; which is the question most people would ask.

Having my life without textbooks and lecture notes for a good four years, I hope that my brain does not “shut off” when I need it the most. I guess that I have to do my best to keep myself awake and focus even after a long day at work. I believe in me; I can do it.

Nowadays, work hasn’t been all that smooth with all sorts of shit coming up. Sometimes it might just feel so unbearable that you need to step away from your desk so that you can get your focus and mind back to where it needs to be. But thanks to the amazing company of friends that I have, work can never get too stressful for me. We even came up with a name for our group just combining our first initials together to form “MLD”. We can tell each other anything and trust each other with it. We can joke and laugh in the middle of a random conversation that one of us started at a random time. They are friends that I would not trade for anything else.

I know that my title may have indicated that the simple days are over but that is not the case whenever I am together with my girl. Everytime, she seems to have the right ingredients to make my sorrows, stress and all hardship go away. I guess that’s what love does for you when it’s right. Always showered with more love than I ever felt day in day out and never to take anything for granted. I think that’s how I survive through everything; having the support I need to take a single step everyday.

To be loved, oh what a feeling to have.

 

“It was never me against the world when I have people behind my back to push me through it all.”

Halfway

It’s been a while…

We are heading almost halfway through 2017 and it seems that time is moving way too fast. With each passing days, it just makes me feel that I don’t want to grow up so quickly. There’s still so many things to do, so many wonders left to be discovered and here I am, struggling to survive with my daily work. 

Things haven’t been good at work I guess but at least I have awesome colleagues to help me with my day to day agony. Laughter is always the best medicine for sure. Still in the process of looking out for a new opportunity for me but to no avail. However, I’m still trying my best so fingers crossed! 

It’s turning a year soon; a year since I met the most wonderful person that makes me feel complete. It’s still amazing looking back to how far we have come. Each and everyday was filled with bliss and I’m not even kidding. This is the first time that I felt that loving someone could be this easy. Every text, every hug, every kiss, makes me feel like it’s our first and a smile would just light up. The lingering feeling you get when you part ways for the night. The I-Miss-You kind of hugs you get when you haven’t seen each other in a while. Anything good or bad, she is there to listen to your everyday adventure. Always giving you the strength to carry on. 

Love should always be this easy when it’s with the right one. 

I would always think that this kind of love doesn’t exist, only in stories or dramas. But now that I have experienced it for myself, I don’t want to let go. This is what I always imagined my love would be and she is everything that I wished for. 

How lucky am I to meet someone like her. How lucky am I to get to experience this kind of love. How lucky am I to love someone so perfect like her. 

To the many more years ahead of us. Thank you. 

Twenty Sixteen

LIke the most of us, 2016 has been full of ups and downs. Some of us experienced probably some of the happiest moments in their entire life while others might have a hell of a time surviving. Let’s just remember to keep loving and be kind to one another.

2016 is going down to be one of my most memorable and happiest time so far; the best being able to meet the love of my life but more about that later. In the beginning of the year, I was pretty much stuck with my direction in life. What do I do from here onwards? Am I really going to continue with this path? What is the best path for me to take right now? All these questions inside my head left unanswered and waiting for one day when it just pops right in. It was full of uncertainty and changes with people coming in and out of my life, things happening one after another and the stress of trying to keep up with life itself.

Working as a financial planner does have it perks where I can organize my time accordingly and commission is pretty good I have to admit. However, my passion died down along with the issues I faced at that point in time. I started putting my passion elsewhere and that was to be a tutor. This will have to go down as one of the best decision that I made for myself as my passion or rather ‘the fire within me’ lit up when I was teaching. With every student I have, with every lesson that I taught, seeing them grow and improve lesson by lesson, is something rewarding to me and may I say one of my proudest moments in my life. Be it when you received a thank you message, a present, or just a simple smile can make my day a whole lot better. One of the most memorable student that I taught have to be this primary 4 boy.

When I first took on this role as his tutor, I have to admit that I have no idea how do I even begin. There was no foundation and things weren’t looking all that pleasant at all. We struggled together to find the best way for him to learn and study. Fair enough, through all those hard work and effort we put in together, he improved from a 30 plus student to a 74 marks student for his end of year examinations. Seeing that smile on both his mother and his face, I felt that all the tough times were all worth it; all of that in exchange for that one single moment. It reminded me of the time when I had tuition for my A-maths; 32 marks to 76 by the end of the year. It just felt extra special when I know that I changed someone’s life for the better.

Soon, my career took a turn for the better when I was offered a job at a bank and it really helped as I was at that point in time where I have no idea what direction am I suppose to head to. It was a compliance role and I am still enjoying the thrill of a challenging job. There were times where it is stress and tiring, but I knew that I just have hold on and things will fall into place. I have the pleasure of meeting a bunch of colleagues that made my everyday in the office a happy one and still thankful of all the care and concern they have been showing since day 1.

2016 was a year of romance for me when I have dated for quite a while and it just did not feel particularly right for me. That was until I met her. She brought the smiles into my life without much effort and can always put up with my weirdness or uniqueness which I like to call it. Have you ever feel that you don’t have to pretend to be anything or anyone and he/she just love you for who you are. That’s true love my friends. Nothing in the world feels better than knowing that you found the love of your life.

From her constant encouragements, loving messages, hugs and kisses to the serious situation when we can openly talk about our feelings, anything and everything felt better when you are with the right one. Things are just that simple. It makes me feel stupid feeling the need to hide my feelings in my past relationships. I am truly blessed and delighted that I got to meet someone so amazing like her.

That will be the summary of my 2016 as I included most of my most happening moments this year. Ushering in the new year with the people I surround myself with will be the happiest I have ever felt in a very long time. To think that everything just flew past us again, I am a year older next year. Time to be wiser, do what I know I can do best and show the world what I can do. Embrace 2017 and hope that things continues to run smoothly.

Thank you for those that I met, those that helped me, those that embraced me, those that advised me, those that have been there for me and those that love me. Without you, there would have never be me. 

Onwards… Time to start off a new page in my book. Onwards to 2017.