Tag Archives: year’s end

2018 Wrap up: Saling in a Haze

Leaving Bangkok in January 2018
Leaving Bangkok, January 2018

The year of 2018 has been a quite a ride. Like 2016 and 2017, I have to go back and forth between Washington DC and Bangkok. In addition, I got to explore some territories I’d never been to. Here is a quick summary:

  • In Bangkok from December 2017 to the end of January
  • Work in Washington DC in February
  • A trip to Russia in April
  • Back in Washington DC until the end of June
  • A short visit to New York City
  • A long break in Bangkok from early July to mid-September
  • Back to Washington DC again until mid-December
  • Another stop in Tokyo
  • To complete to cycle, now I’m in back in Bangkok

No wonder that by the end of the year, it feels exhausting. The plus side was that it triggered some thoughts of possibilities.

It was a long time ago since I spent some time in a country, like Russia, I didn’t know their language. That made me realise how I missed an exploration that somehow Bangkok or Washington DC could not fulfil.

Also, I got to focus on Animated Doodle. That was a personal accomplishment that I had been struggling since I left Sydney. It was started during the mid-year break in Bangkok. The pace slowed down when I was back to work in Washington DC until it was done months later. That gave me some confidence that a personal project could be managed and achieved.

On the other hand, there were also some downfalls during the year. Some accumulated issues have emerged and caused me a fair amount of stresses.

I don’t mind this lifestyle—living in the two capitals back and forth. But that might not be sustainable in the long term and security has never been certain. There was a prospect for a longer contract that I could stay put in DC for a year or two without having to leave the US every three months. But that didn’t happen. Not to mention personal finance mismanagement.

Those possibilities and mishaps during the year have given me a lot to think about on goals, directions, and actions. At the moment it feels like sailing in a haze. However, it is a kick in the butt for me to move forwards. Hard works ahead and I need to get on it.

Workwise here are some notable ones:

2017 Wrap up: Significant Times and Gratitude

2017 has been an interesting one. Even though I spent most of it in Washington DC for eight months all up, it was fortunate enough for me to be there with friends elsewhere for their significant life events. And I am so grateful for that. In chronological order, there were cancer, marriage, death, and monkhood.

In December 2016 when in Bangkok, one of my best friends got a breast cancer and had an operation just before New Year. She was released from the hospital on New Year’s Eve. We gathered at her place to support her. How melancholy to start the year! Fortunately, she’s got a strong will. And eventually, she beat it.

February to June, I was in DC and needed to hop out of the country within 90 days. Another good timing in April when a friend, whom I worked with closely during the years in Bangkok, was getting married in UK. It was a perfect occasion for me to be her wedding guest. Actually, it was my very first time to attend a Christian ceremony. Also, it gave me some snippets of London after that too.

Got a break Bangkok in July and August. The last two weeks of that break was a real blow. My best friend suddenly got a stroke and passed away. His death got me think a lot about life. I always think about life but that reminded how to live your life worthwhile.

Back to work in DC in September to November. And I took a detour to visit a long lost cousin in Los Angeles before another break in Bangkok in December and January. Good news, another close friend was getting ordained to become a monk for three weeks. In Thai culture, this counts as one of the most honourable merits for a son to do for his parents. That was actually a pleasant way to end the year.

Wearing saffron rope #buddhist #Bangkok #temple

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These events overshadowed what I original planned and thought about 2017. Since the bold decision to work in DC in 2015 (which got me the hindsight about the journeys that made me), I have been embracing my life to be back and forth in DC and Bangkok in 2016. The plan for 2017 was to get back on track on other aspects, especially on the hypertension issue.

I’d like to do something about my drinking habits. I’d say alcohol control has been better than the previous years in DC. However, Bangkok is still a challenge to be disciplined. But, at least, I could pinpoint where the temptations are. On top of that, I’m back on meds that was deliberately ignored when I first moved to DC and keeping monitoring blood pressure.

Workwise, here were some notable ones:

While back-and-forth life of mind sounds exciting to able to change the scenes constantly throughout the year, I just can’t help thinking about settling in one place in the future. In the end, we have to do it at some point but I guess I would keep pushing it while I could.

2017 was full of significant times of my close friends. It was mixed with sickness, joy, loss, and gratitude. Yes, gratitude, that I should be feeling about it. It also made me prepare for the years to come.

2016 Wrap up: Life as a Migrant Bird

Sunrise in Abu Dhabi
Watching the sunrise at Abu Dhabi International Airport in the transit to Washington DC

Looking back in 2016, I have spent time around six months each in Washington DC and Bangkok, going back and forth. Things I have learnt from it were life as a migrant bird seemed to be the pattern now and these physical traveling weren’t as intense as the inner journey I’ve had.

January-March

Continuing from August 2015, I was in DC until March. Those eight months shook my mental state into identity crisis and self-doubts. The biggest one would be why I keep running into an uncertainty like that again and again. That created a quest for me to try to comprehend it.

At the same time, work-wise, I was pleased to see the last video I produced at the last job in Bangkok in 2015 was finally published. It was another video I pushed through, using live action to convey messages of a report on Thailand’s education system.

Continue reading 2016 Wrap up: Life as a Migrant Bird

Out to Space Year Twelve: the Beyond

pong_12_years_out-to-space

April 2015 – March 2016

This is the final post of the series. Out to Space has come to year twelve. And most posts of the year are what I’ve been looking back in those years of the blog. Why am I doing this? Not only because it reveals to me why I blog but also gives some directions where it could go next.

It started from a photoblog as the platform that I discovered my passion. The following year laid down the foundation of photography. It got some decent exposures in year three (2006/2007) and led to the explosions of the photography works in the year after, which I started to get on videos. Then, there was the transformation to video when I got into College of Fine Arts and the intensity of to finish the school. After that, I was mentally and physically worn out. And the blog became hollow. It got worse in the four years I lived in Bangkok. It was almost void.

Changing the scene to Washington DC helps reviving it. Actually, this is my New Year resolution for 2016—to go through the blog and see how far it has gone. I finally got a chance to clean up broken photo posts in the early years when it was in Moveable Type. Continue reading Out to Space Year Twelve: the Beyond

Out to Space Year Eight-Eleven: the Void

April 2011 – March 2015

Instagram selfie
Instagram selfie with a rainy view at Thailand Creative and Design Center, August 2014

The previous year of Out to Space was pretty much hollow in its content, I found. But there was at least something in it. The following four years when I lived in Bangkok, the blog was almost void.

There were 141 blog posts from year eight to eleven (April 2011 – March 2015) including automated tweet posts. Whereas year four, when it was most active, there were 176 posts. To break them down:

Year Eight (2011 – 2012)

73 posts in that 53 was automated from weekly tweets. There was one series on Luang Phrabang travel in January 2012.

Continue reading Out to Space Year Eight-Eleven: the Void