2012. You have been a squeal-inducing season-ender, a cliffhanger, a climactic denouement.
Everything in my life thus far has led me to this point, and this year has been a big culmination of all the lessons and experiences in my life thus far. It’s been filled with turning points, and memorable / fulfilling / challenging experiences. In 2012, I’ve managed to:
- Become pesco-vegetarian in January (started eating fish again in September, but will probably get off it again)
- Throw together another Anteroom Sessions
- Explore yoga
- Travel alone (Cambodia, Thailand, Laos, Sri Lanka, Philippines — Dumaguete)
- Travel for an extended periods of time (two and a half months around Asia; Nearly two weeks in Baguio, and again in Dumaguete & Bacolod; and again in India)
- Stay at the Hariharalaya Center in Siem Reap for 2 weeks and reaffirm things I had already been thinking of
- Resign from my own company (it is the bomb I referred to in the last paragraph here)
- Journey 31 hours from Battambang, Cambodia to Chiang Mai, Thailand
- Chat with monk Tiko in Chiang Mai
- “Train” an elephant
- Learn about textiles in Ock Pop Tok, Luang Prabang
- Stop whining thanks to COPE in Vientiane
- Learn about eco-tourism practices from Jetwing Sigiriya and Rainforest Eco Lodge, Deniyaya.
- Kick a guy in the balls (I’ve been wanting to do this since high school / college)
- Teach a few “classes”
- Attend a Philippine textile forum in UP CTID
- Get my Open Water Diver Certification with Liquid Dumaguete
- Feel like an Indian goddess in Hampi (been too busy / lazy to post pictures / write about it)
- Learn how to surf with Surfista Travels
- Get Muni PH off the ground
- Meet A LOT of inspiring individuals in the fields of business, tourism, arts, wellness, and even government (didn’t get all of their photos though)
- Find direction
With all that’s been done this year, I really do feel like I could die and that would be okay, and not that I mean that in any morbid manner at all, but in the sense that I really lived this year, and in that feeling / being alive, felt that much more ready to die (?).
I’m not a perfect person, nor do I try to be. But I think I’ve finally found contentment in spite of flaws or imperfections. And while the competitive Type A personalities may see this as a sign of “settling”, I see it as a sign of gratitude. It’s not about no longer having goals, but about really being present. There still are things I want to get done or “achieve”, but I don’t want to lose sight of the present, in my efforts to attain something in the future.
When I planned my long trip, I simply plotted out my countries with no specific plan in mind, no tourist spot checklist, no bookings save for my first 2 nights on a 77-day trip. I wanted to really just visit a place and see what it has to offer, without any prejudgments or expectations. And I noticed that the moment I visited a place with indelibly inked prejudgments and expectations, I would leave disappointed.
This is not to say we shouldn’t make a semblance of plans at all in our lives, but simply that we shouldn’t get caught up in anal planning (that oftentimes hampers us from carrying anything out), or be brainwashed into thinking what we should get out of any experience instead of going into it with bright new eyes.
Blaze New World
I joke around with friends when I say that I’d be disappointed if the world didn’t end in 2012, and that sometimes, I wish it would so everyone’s misery would just be put to an end. But if the world doesn’t end this year (and I hate to disappoint you, but the Mayans predicted it on December 21, 2012, which is a date that has already passed), I believe that 2013 will usher in the end of the old world, and a new consciousness where we don’t have to perceive life on Earth as a shitty mess, where we stop running about so much because we realize we really don’t need so much money, where we think before we consume any product, service or media, where we make an effort to good for others and the planet because karma is the best rule to live by.
Call me a dreamer, but I will actually work to make that happen in 2013 with Muni PH. Cynics may say it’s an impossible dream, but I’m a cynic that will try her darnedest anyway.
Cheers, 2013. May you kiss my ass.