My Greatest Blessing Today

I am writing them down now just in case I lose that paper I was discretely yet hastily scribbling on as I listen to wonderful words of wisdom that only a wisened man with experience can truly and credibly convey.


I sat with him after dinner. He was having a drink with an expat colleague and I just finished working and eating at the same time. I brought my cup of tea to their table and tried to catch the ongoing conversation.

I asked him about his Batik shirt. That started it. We talked about work and stuff. Then the expat colleague stood up to go to the loo and my phone started beeping crazily. It’s the boss. I have to reply.

After finishing sending my replies I apologized for being rude and fiddling with my phone while he quietly sat across me.

He said he thought it was the boyfriend I was passionately texting. And that started it. I have to keep the brain cells working after that to remember all the nuggets of wisdom that came pouring like water. Too bad I forgot and missed a lot. But there’s still tomorrow. I will probably bring a recorder just to be sure. 😉

Him: Don’t work so hard that you forget to live your life.

Ouch. I am not really sure if I am guilty of this now but that was a nudge in the right direction. It doesn’t mean that if the work doesn’t feel like work that I will neglect myself from consciously stopping and start doing other things.

Him: People say they wanna know what’s gonna happen in the future but really, nobody wants to know.
Me: Why would people not want to know?
Him: Because that would be the end of ones dreams and goals.

Him: Sometimes you can get caught up in this place and just work and work. And when you you take a day off you feel guilty that you’re not working. Do not allow that to happen to you. I have only learned that fairly 2 or 3 years ago and I am 62 now.

This is me now.

It felt like I was reading my kind of book only this time I am hearing everything firsthand and I have to write down what I learned lest they are gone forever.

As we got up from the table and called it a night, I confessed that I wrote down things that I picked up from the conversation today.

He said that he does it all the time. I asked which one, the writing or the teaching? He said both. And then he continued, “I can only share what I think I did wrong in life hoping that others will learn from it and try not to repeat it. Work but do not forget to enjoy. Be wise with your money.

I have pissed with my money when I was young so I have to work even at this age. I can always tell myself I shouldn’t have traveled much and should have not done this or that but really, who knows what is right or wrong. There is really no right or wrong. In the end, just do whatever it is that makes you happy. And getting more money will not make you happy. Remember that.”

Definitely I will be sitting with him again tomorrow and hopefully play golf with him in the morning if I manage to escape from work.

He is my greatest blessing today.


When I Bowed to the Rain

Life is like a rainbow. You need both the sun and the rain to make its colors appear.


I was secretly hating the rain. I, together with the other colleagues, have been meaning to do a trial run of flying Japanese lanterns for over a week now. The schedule is always cancelled. It has been raining consistently at night the past few days. There is no way those lanterns are going to soar with those droplets.

Today was no different. There was a drizzle again. Most probably the plan tonight will again be scrapped.


It was the last 30 minutes of my official working hours. Official because I still do work from time to time after work and today is one of them.

So I was bludging and checking some websites for “research” when I unconsciously peered out the glass window as I try to remember something. And then I saw this.


My eyes widened and my jaw dropped open. Holy shoot.

That is so gorgeous!

I have to laugh at myself for my over the top reaction considering I am alone in my space.

I quickly composed myself and grabbed my P&S sitting prettily on my table. I cannot let this pass.


There was no word to describe it. My heart was singing.



Who doesn’t love rainbows? Who won’t fall in love with rainbows?

I have to quickly run to my room and grab my DSLR hoping it will give me better quality photos (in Auto mode). Haha. I still haven’t gotten around fiddling with those buttons. I still don’t know how to use that camera!


I am not sure if there was any difference. But with such a subject, there is no way it will look ugly.

I fell in love over and over again with this place.

Everyday I never fail to thank God for placing me here, for handpicking these hills to be part of my life story. Surely His imaginations are always way way better than what I can fathom.


And as I capped my clicking spree I secretly forgave the rain for pouring today.

Because indeed, rainbows need both the sun and the rain to make its colors appear.

Thank you for the wonderful lesson.

How Do You Know If You Have Moved On?

Let me tell you.

Last year, I cried a lot.

So this is how it feels, I told myself.

If you really know me you’d know I am one tough cookie. I don’t fall easily. Really. I can have gazillion crushes but I am picky, I reserve my heart for somebody very very special.

I thought that’s how it goes. That when you save yourself and keep away from flings and one-night stands you will be blessed big time and will be spared of heartaches.


Holy goat. I was in my last year of my 20s and it was only then that I learned this lesson that teenagers have mastered a long long time ago.

Blame it on my upbringing, blame it on my religion, blame it on the books I’ve read, blame it on the movies I’ve watched, blame it on the company I keep. I was not living in the real world.

At the end of it all it boils down to one thing. I was hallucinating. I was operating in a world which I thought exists. It does not. Reality check.

So after the first heart break I almost lost my mind. I was composed on the outside but crumbling on the inside. How can it happen? I was a good person. I am a good person. I do not deserve this. The pleas of an ignoramus.

I need God’s counsel. He has a lot to answer. I went on confession. What the priest told me rung again and again.

I was too strict to myself. Who told me to behave like this? Loosen up. Let go. Enjoy life. The priest said.

So I moved on and heeded his advice.

Crap. That was painful (again).

I cried rivers.

I thought I can’t get over it. But the age old wisdom of people when they say that everything will be alright really is true.

Everything will really be alright.

Everything is alright.

In hindsight, I realized that at that moment when I was wallowing in pain I inadvertently made my world so small, minuscule, tiny. I harbored that sadness and brokenness that I forgot that there was a bigger, prettier wholeness surrounding me.

What I saw was just the current act. I failed to see and understand the whole play.

But you cannot argue with a person with a broken heart. As what one book I recently read says,

“Pain–emotional pain–is a curious thing. It takes place on an invisible level, yet it has the potential to actually shape the real stuff of a person’s future. It can numb and destroy your passion in life, but it can refine and bless as well. When you’re hurting, no amount of logic or rational thought will make it go away. It’s almost impossible to make pain a mental exercise. And willing the pain to be gone–we’ve all tried that. I will not feel this way. It doesn’t work too well, does it?” — Strong Women Soft Hearts

So true. Despite willing the heart to shape up and get a grip, it cannot. It needs its natural time of healing. It cannot be forced.

But that time will come. Eventually it will come.

And you can just look back and say that was funny.

The pain will still be there, I believe. It will never go away. But it is not that searing pain felt from the initial lashing. It is more of a dulled pain, like a scar, like a memory that is slowly fading. You know it happened. You have the scar to prove it. You have the photo framed. It is just that you can’t remember the details anymore.

One book I read said that one sign that you have forgiven is when you remember the incident but have forgotten the particulars.

The journey of learning. The journey of being an adult. The journey of being human.

It is just so amazing.

So going back to my question, how do you know if you have moved on?

I want to believe there is really no complete moving on. You cannot really go back to the old self before the pain happened. You will never be the same again.

And that is not ugly. In fact it is beautiful. It shows the resilience and power of the human soul.

To quote a snippet from the same book I listed above,

“… you know you’re an adult when you start to realize that some sorrows in life will never go away. You learn to carry them with you in ways that enrich rather than debilitate your life, in ways that make you wise. But the dark and knubby places in the fabric, the tapestry of your life, remain.” — Strong Women Strong Hearts

You have moved on when you learn to carry the pain with you in ways that enrich rather than debilitate your life, in ways that make you wise.

I think I have finally become an adult.

And I am smiling now.


Les, I feel like I’ve been convinced by some indian guys to go horseback riding with the Dalton Brothers in Cappadocia.

Really, what was I thinking? Writing on your blog? (Is it on or in your blog?? Ooooffff I don’t even know English enough for this! Give me a dictionary, lütfen!) you can see, I left it to the last minutes of this day. Cause I’m brazilian and we do that: we leave everything for the last minute!

Maybe not because I’m brazilian…maybe cause I spent the whole day thinking about what to write here, and thinking about everything we lived together and thinking how much you mean to me. And I couldn’t find the words to explain that…

What is the Universe telling us when it puts both of us in the same country, same city, doing the same thing and with some people in common to introduce us in the middle of a crowded street at the end of some random day?

Bilmiyorum 😉

I just know I thank the Universe for that. I’m thankful for you. I’m thankful that in the middle of a strange country, with people talking a strange language and having some strange food we decided not to be strangers anymore.

I’m thankful for our courage and for not having giving up on each other… Cause we have to admit: we even look weird together. It seems like we were not build to be friends! But we did it! In the middle of akward moments and some feelings that I was only thinking about beer and that you were not thinking about having fun (“She behaves like an old lady” I thought!)…in the middle of all these things, we made it!

And now, here I am… to start a new chapter! A written one 😉

Let’s see how it goes. Hope it tastes like manti and doesn’t look like a buyuk maymun 😉Imagem