Don’t Be

Don’t say it when you don’t mean it
Don’t say it for formality sake
Don’t promise when you can’t fulfill it
Don’t underestimate one’s potential
Don’t undermine others
Don’t think you are better than anyone else
Don’t think you are always right

Be humble
Be confident
Be yourself
Be loving
Be accepting
Be the one who knows there are others who are better than you
Be the one who accepts failure and admits that you can be wrong
Be the one who loves unconditionally
Be the one who respects others

A new chapter.

Yesterday marks the first day of a new chapter and coincidentally, it had been exactly three months since I was left my previous employment. The last three months have taught me nothing but valuable life lessons that made me a better person than I was before. Two months ago, I was complaining and whining about how life was unfair towards me and things were just evolving from bad to worse as the days went by.

But as I walked through the journey, I realized that it was not bad at all. In fact, I discovered a new side of me that I never knew existed.

My soulmate consistently reminded me that everyone will go through a phase where one will hit rock bottom and it’s up to them to rise up and get back on their feet and soar. He told me to love myself. I hold those words dear to me and I start to see the world in a different light. I really felt like I am reborn and is given a chance to soar higher than before.

 

Mirror

I began to look within myself and I could see how all of the challenges in my relationship was a reflection of my loveless thoughts and the lack of connection I had with myself. I was only focusing on my external life with no awareness of my internal landscape, which is not just our body but also our thoughts and emotions. When I was ready to look at it, I saw that my thoughts and emotions were based on lack, fear, doubt, and limitation.

The way we treat ourselves will affect how others treat us. The truth is, I wasn’t giving to myself what I wanted from someone else. I wasn’t giving myself the love and attention that I wanted. Everything I was withholding from myself I was looking for to the other person and was not getting it. I wasn’t taking care of myself — I was choosing to focus all of my attention on taking care of others or taking care of “the relationship” and trying to fix it.

We are meant to live to our full potential and when we do so, we allow our relationships to be the fullness that they can be as well. The universe lines us up with experiences that will allow us to make new choices and break out of old patterns, which is a deeply liberating experience and one in which we discover our power and the connection with the loving force within us and around us that is constantly nudging us and guiding us to our right thoughts, and our right actions and right choices.

Ditto. And I smiled.

Our Travels: Jaisalmer, India. (Part 1)

It’s been a long while that I wrote anything about my travel in India and the last post was my experience in Jaipur. Now it’s time to share my experiences while in Jaisalmer and Agra, India.

The first thing to note, if you decide to take a car to Jaisalmer from Jaipur, which is an 8-10 hours drive away, please do not embark your journey during at nightfall. We had a very traumatic experience and we strongly encourage travelers to either board the plane, train or travel by car in the day. You can check for train and flight timings on http://www.makemytrip.com and make your booking through the site.

We paid approximately Rs12,000 for the night ride and boy, it is definitely not a ride that you would want to pay for.  The driver picked us up at about 8-9pm from our hotel in Jaipur and we were only out of Jaipur at about 11pm or so due to bad traffic.

I shall skip our terrible experiences on the road and skip to the part where we reached Jaisalmer. We reached outside of the Jaisalmer Fort at about 5am. It was a whopping 10 degrees. We were all shivering and jittering while we climbed up the slope into the fort. Our hotel, Desert Boys Guest House, is located in the fort itself.

Once we reached the doorstep of the guest house, we were ushered to our rooms. There’s six of us and our rooms are all located at three different levels. My partner and I got the room located on the top floor and I was in awe. Both of us literally looked at each other with our jaw dropped.

It was AMAZING.

 

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Picture from http://www.priceline.com

That is exactly how our room looks like. It was marvelous. It feels like were royalty. Lol.

Just as we settled down and put our stuff in the room, we stepped out of the room and we were about to witness the sunrise in Jaisalmer. From where we were at, we were able to see villages, the desert, and the horizon. The feeling is surreal.

We showered and took a nap before we head out to the town later in the day.

Here is the address of the Desert Boys Guest House:

Inside Fort
Vyasa Para
Jaisalmer, Rajasthan
345001, India

Do check them out if you are visiting Jaisalmer and also, they are really affordable!

To be continued…

 

 

 

Our Trip: Admiralty Park

 

We did something that was out of the ordinary yesterday. But it was worth it. Nothing much to say about the trip because everything was pretty far for us to shoot. However, a kind soul shared with us a piece of information. He came across a Large-tailed Nightjar that was perched on this little signage (i think?). It is pretty uncommon to see a Nightjar in the open because they are known to camouflage themselves amongst the dried leaves and litters on the ground.

 

So here it is. 🙂

 

001
Large-tailed Nightjar
Shot using Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS on a Canon 760D.
Aperture: f/6.3
Shutter Speed: 1/250
ISO: 3200
Focal Length: 600m

 

Our Weekend “Getaway”: Day 3 of 3 (Singapore Botanic Gardens)

We managed to start the day pretty early. But to our surprised, the day was pretty slow until we saw the Buffy Fish Owl. Our first reaction, “OMG”.

SBG_013_01
Buffy Fish Owl
Shot using Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS on a Canon 760D.
Aperture: f/6.3
Shutter Speed: 1/800
ISO: 800
Focal Length: 558mm

There’s not one but two of these perched on the tree. I managed to get the other owl when it was stretching itself.

SBG_004
Buffy Fish Owl
Shot using Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS on a Canon 760D.
Aperture: f/6.3
Shutter Speed: 1/800
ISO: 1600
Focal Length: 459mm

After a short break, we continued walking around the area and decided to enter the forest trail (i forgot what’s the name of the trail). We bumped into a fellow photographer from Japan. We were talking about the different birds that we looking for. He told us that he was looking for a Pitta but it went further into the forest. We bid farewell and wanted to continue with our walk when suddenly a bird flew right past us. We turned and look at it and realized it was the Greater Racket-trailed Drongo! Another “OMG” moment for us.

SBG_001
Greater Racket-tailed Drongo
Shot using Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS on a Canon 760D.
Aperture: f/6.3
Shutter Speed: 1/125
ISO: 1600
Focal Length: 230mm

My partner has been dreaming of looking at this species with his own eyes for a few years now, ever since he was still in school. When we started bird watching and photography together last year, he was talking about it and I was surprised and couldn’t believe that a bird can look this unique. We did come across it once when we were at MacRitchie but it just flew past us and didn’t stop. So you can imagine our excitement when this gorgeous bird stopped and posed for us. 😀

Once we are done getting our shots, we walked further down and exited the area.

We decided to walk for a bit more before we make our way to Pasir Ris Park in the afternoon. While walking, we saw a group of fellow photographers wandering around the Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden. We followed them and to our surprise, another rare species!

SBG_005
Von Schrenck’s Bittern
Shot using Sigma 150-600mm f/5-6.3 DG OS on a Canon 760D.
Aperture: f/7.1
Shutter Speed: 1/800
ISO: 1600
Focal Length: 600mm

We made our move to Pasir Ris Park right after but to our disappointment, there’s nothing much there. It could be the weather because it was quite cloudy and rained for a bit. Nevertheless, we did manage to spot a Dollarbird (didn’t get a shot, sadly), an Oriental Piped Hornbill and a Grey Heron.