As you know, in some Asian countries all it takes is one unconscious act (ehem, mistake) to appear culturally insensitive, insult someone, or lose a friendly or business…
If you’ve ever lived through a period of your life that caused you an intense amount of stress or that changed you – either mentally in a negative way or physically because you weren’t taking good care of yourself anymore – then you know where I’m at today. I’ve gained more weight than I wish to document here (it’s not a few kilos but way into the double digits). I stopped socialising, stopped trying to make friends, and stopped leaving my flat…sometimes for weeks on end. I went from being a social butterfly of sorts to a solitary hermit. (more…)
Women around the world are so wonderfully diverse that it is makes perfect sense that we ladies have completely different ideas of beauty … I remember shocking the hell out of people when I moved to Spain by telling them I shaved my legs. You see, Spanish women only wax them so they saw me as barbaric and behind-the-times. Until I lived in India I had only ever tweezed my eyebrows but that’s barbaric there because women only use threading. (more…)
Actually living in a foreign country instead of just visiting it paves the way for a whole slew of fabulous ‘local’ experiences that one wouldn’t normally be able to experience … and that time I dressed up and performed in traditional Chinese opera makeup and costume now sits high on my list of treasured experiences that I will remember for the rest of my life. This wonderful afternoon and evening took place earlier this year during the first Chinese New Year I celebrated while actually living in greater China and it was so damn fun…I hope to have the chance to do it again (and again and again!). I’ve saved the costume and headpiece so if anyone want to do it next year, I’m in!! (more…)
Today is my birthday and what’s a girl to do when she’s fresh off the boat and doesn’t have friends yet in Hong Kong? Shop, darling…SHOP! And since I just signed the lease on the ‘tiny but fabulous’ flat I will be calling home in three days, well…this birthday handbags and shoes are being swapped for a water filter and furniture thanks in large part to a man named Ramesh and IKEA Hong Kong at Causeway Bay.
It seems blissfully fitting that today is now officially the first day of the rest of my life because today is the day that the greatest joy in my life arrived 19 years ago when my daughter was born. While she has been enjoying her very first house party in her own apartment in the UK tonight, I relocated to Hong Kong! She is simply the best thing that ever happened to me and I’ve really missed her since she went off to uni a year ago, leaving me empty nested. So it feels ‘right’ for lack of a better term that this new chapter of my life should begin on the same day that the best part of my life began back in 1995. (more…)