26 while 26

July 28, 2008

So I’m 27.  I’m officially in my late 20s, which is kinda funny because people always assume that I am older than I am and most of the time I feel older than I am.  On some level, I’m actually surprised that I’m only 27.  (Although my mother keeps telling me that I should think about settling down yada yada.  Urg.)  I was feeling pretty nochalant about my birthday this year and wasn’t in a particularly festive mood.  I cancelled my usual 100-people-on-the-invite-list party at the last minute and turned down the celebrations a couple of notches.  It turned out to be an brilliant idea.  Quality time with my favourite people make me incredibly happy. 

Anyway, here’s a list of 26 things that happened while I was 26. 

  1. I realised that blood runs thicker than water and my folks are pretty cool. 
  2. I thought very very very very very seriously about why I am Christian.  I realised that being Christian is so fundamental to who I am that I don’t really know what it means not to be one. 
  3. I also thought seriously about why I go to church.  The reasons were far less compelling.
  4. I learnt the meaning of the word “cancer”.  It used to be just a word.
  5. I gave my first eulogy.  It is not an experience I care to repeat too often.  The smell of lilies reminds me of funerals.  I used to like lilies.  I don’t anymore.
  6. I got more intentional about spending more time with the people who are important to me.  A very good decision.
  7. I changed jobs.  My colleagues are amazing.  They have no idea how much they’ve kept my sanity alive in a really roller-coaster year.  It’s also great to be back in the city.  Buona Vista was getting lame.
  8. I went through 1 box of namecards within the first 4-5 months of being on the job.  Never happened before.  Not even when I was in International Relations.  “Networking” stopped being a cold, evil word and is actually kinda fun.
  9. I stopped leading a cell group.  I thought it would be something that I would do forever.  Apparently not.  Also stepped down from all my ministry commitments.  ALL.  I don’t know how I feel about that yet.  That said, the last 4+++ years have given me people skills I never knew I had.
  10. I went to San Francisco and decided that it is on my list of cities to move to.  Jackie’s flatmate (whose name I don’t remember) made me the best hot chocolate I drank all year.
  11. I went back to Cambodia.  I now speak enough Khmer (about 3 sentences worth) to handle dispensary on my own if the medication comes in tablets and need to be taken 3 times a day.  Haha.  I’m going again in a couple of weeks.
  12. I went back to Perhentian.  Yay!  I would have enjoyed the trip more if I didn’t have the damn flu.
  13. I found an awesome apple crumble recipe.  Don’t underestimate the power of a good and simple recipe that you can make from memory!  Today, I improvised with strawberry jam and a grill oven.  It still tasted decent.  I was very surprised. 
  14. I reconciled.  If it is important to me, I will always fight for it.  However, there were instances where I did not reconcile and still don’t feel particularly compelled to.  Enough said.
  15. I drank a lot less alcohol but way too much coffee.  You got to pick your poison.
  16. I sang at a wedding for the first time.  And forgot the words.  Oops.
  17. I took part in my first 10km race and completed it without dying.  I’m plotting my next race because I can’t seem to get motivated to train without a goal.  Oh dear.
  18. I started running for fun.  Running along the San Diego waterfront as the sun was setting will go down as one of the best moments of the last 12 months.
  19. I got allergic conjunctivitis and a weird bubble thing developed on my eye.  Very gross.  This is why you must always clean your contact lens properly.
  20. I developed a love for ramen.  I used to think it was an expensive version of instant noodles.  But I think it appeals to the Cantonese in me that loves a good soup.  *yum*
  21. I changed perfume.  Okay.  I know that sounds bimbotic but I am seriously picky about my perfume.
  22. I got asked “are you local” a lot.  It amuses me.  I don’t have an accent, do I?!  (Maybe that’s the problem.)
  23. I blogged a lot more.  I should be more disciplined about it but hey, it’s MY blog and I’ll write about whatever the hell I want.  Writing is fun.
  24. I became a lot more straight-talking and no-holds-barred.  Less diplomatic and less afraid to offend.  I missed that part of me which I seemed to have left in Melbourne.  Unfortunately, I also became a lot more cynical.
  25. I spent much more time outdoors.  Rollerblading, picnics, open air cinema, running, walking, building sandcastles, drinking coffee (or beer)…  Very nice.  Weird tans.  Not so nice.
  26. All things said, I realised that I am incredibly blessed.  A deep sense of satisfaction in one’s soul is not something to scoff at.

What a year!  Bring on 27!  🙂

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