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adventures of a sound.traveller

a space where i hope to share with you the hopefully interesting projects im currently working on / have worked on, the soundscapes all around me that i am constantly discovering and re-discovering (oh, what joys!!!), any other random and delightfully weird thoughts regarding sounds, music and its friends. share with me yours too, please do!

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goodbye 2018, hello 2019

Yun Qi Wong

2018. You went by in the blink of an eye, and yet, so much happened. Just goes to show once again how our perception of time is constantly changing - it seems to fly right by us in the heat of things, but in retrospect, a year can be unbelievably long and jam packed with events, making me wonder: did all that really take place in one single year?

last hikes of 2018 / the breathtaking landscape at the Zhuilu Old Trail in Hualien, Taiwan

last hikes of 2018 / the breathtaking landscape at the Zhuilu Old Trail in Hualien, Taiwan

A few days ago, I read about someone who did a list of More/Less - things she would like to do more, or less, in this coming year - as opposed to a list of resolutions. I decided to give it a go, so here’s mine, and here’s hoping I’ll be able to live up to this list a little!

20190104_224047-01.jpeg

There have been many projects floating around in my mind for the past year/s, slowly taking shape, slowly germinating. I hope this is the year I will find the courage and that kick in the butt to bring these little babies into fruition - the beginning of each year always carries a tiny sparkle of magic and hope and raw energy. Perhaps edged with a tinge of desperation by time slipping through our fingers? Or perhaps the seed of excitement at the possibility of things and the unknown.

Let´s grasp this precious little time we are given and see where it brings us. In the meantime, fingers crossed I´ll be sharing more from these projects on this space over time!

its the small moments

Yun Qi Wong

the sight I am treated to daily whilst cycling to work through the Eilenriede

the sight I am treated to daily whilst cycling to work through the Eilenriede

It has been such a good, good week. 

Nothing spectacular happened, but I was able to sit down almost everyday with one or two friends for really share and catch up with a bunch of honest, meaningful talks and belly-aching laughs. Not just a rushed, hurried meetup.  

We might not have been able to save the world with these catchups, but they powered me right through the entire week, charging me up with so much joy and energy and inspiration I was burning to share with all the people I was working with. I did SO much work this week, and at the end of it, I was still ready for more. 

Its the little moments like these that make such a huge difference. And it is these moments which I cherish so much. And I am glad we made time for them despite our crazy schedules. Because ultimately, these are the moments we will carry with us. 

Yesterday I stumbled upon this article which I want to share with you: http://therumpus.net/2011/02/dear-sugar-the-rumpus-advice-column-64/

This is such a good reminder to myself: "Your assumptions about the lives of others are in direct relation to your naïve pomposity. Many people you believe to be rich are not rich. Many people you think have it easy worked hard for what they got. Many people who seem to be gliding right along have suffered and are suffering. Many people who appear to you to be old and stupidly saddled down with kids and cars and houses were once every bit as hip and pompous as you." 

and this, always: "One Christmas at the very beginning of your twenties when your mother gives you a warm coat that she saved for months to buy, don’t look at her skeptically after she tells you she thought the coat was perfect for you. Don’t hold it up and say it’s longer than you like your coats to be and too puffy and possibly even too warm. Your mother will be dead by spring. That coat will be the last gift she gave you. You will regret the small thing you didn’t say for the rest of your life.

Say thank you." 

have a good weekend, folks!

ich liebe mein leben

Yun Qi Wong

2015 was a mad, mad year. I am still digesting all the events that happened and trying to make sense of how they all took place within such a short span of time which ironically, did not feel that way at all. Time is a crazy fellow, playing tricks on us. 

2015 brought me to the U.S. of A for the very first time in my life, and boy, were my expectations met. We lost my father-in-law to cancer. I flew back home for about six times (enough to instil a healthy dose of fear of airports and flights), and in between all that I had a bunch of exciting projects and got to work intensively with a lot of young musicians which brought me much joy.  

this post is definitely a tad too late to be called my new year's post, but seeing as yesterday was the real new year in my culture, i think we can safely say it still counts ;) 

2015 was also filled with great conversations with an inspiring group of beautiful and strong people I am honoured to call my family and friends. C and I walked deeper into the world of Yoga and emerged with better mental and physical strength. ditto to my Atemtherapie and Sprecherziehung lessons! 

I think the greatest lesson i took away from 2015 was learning to honour myself. To recognize that I am worthy of the same kind of respect I want to give unto others - not just from others, but more importantly, from myself. I learnt to respect my needs and to listen to my body more. To stand up for these needs, because like it or not, if even I could not be bothered to, who would? 

That the time I set aside as me-time is every bit important as the time I set aside for others - not honouring that ultimately meant I had nothing left to give to others if I was all burnt out. I learnt to say 'No' more often, and not to be such a pushover. 

These are lessons accumulated over the recent years, but only started crystallising, becoming conscious efforts over the last months. It was, and is still not easy for me. I think many of us were in some way, educated and conditioned in a manner which did not instil this strongly within us. However, it has been liberating, empowering and humbling for me. I also learnt that honouring myself did not have to mean acting arrogantly, nor did it mean I was selfish. 

and so, armed with this bunch of new discoveries, I am looking forward to whatever 2016 throws at me. because: 

HELL YEAH! and i hope you do too!

HELL YEAH! and i hope you do too!


loss and unconditional love

Yun Qi Wong

a while back, we lost someone beloved to a vicious bout of cancer. it happened all too fast, in the space of a mere few months. 

sometimes, I still forget you are gone. i walk in certain places and look around in expectation for you, or pick up the phone to text you and then it hits me again without warning. 

reading this helped me, before you were gone and we knew the end was nearing. it helped in the days after. as with so many friends who hugged and simply let me cry. 

so yes, you might no longer be with us. but the love never dies.

the memories - I hope - will never fade: your quiet strength; the way you smile; us making inside jokes out of the situation you were in; your fascination with light bulbs, good audio equipment, flowers and anything gadgety ;)

I saw how deep and unconditional love can be - despite all the messy and complicated feelings that come with it. to have and experience that is humbling, and to be surrounded by that is truly a gift. And I am reminded again of how lucky I am to have a family like this. 

thankful.

Yun Qi Wong

(C) Kelvin Chua

(C) Kelvin Chua

these are our wedding bands - hammered, soldered and forged together with our very own four hands. we had to keep them safe and sound for more than six months before we could finally put them on.

of course, the unthinkable happened a mere two months later - C lost his band. we were both devastated. I felt hysterical, and all i could think about was: this cannot be bought again, just like that, from the shops. it was a unicum, for goodness sake! what should we do now? typical me. or should i say, the me i have become, over the years. 

C blew his top when I could not stop pushing all the blame on him. I had been the one who had to take the band on and off several times a day whilst practicing the piano, and I thought I would be the first to lose it. I felt like I could not forgive him for this. 

but then, C put it all into perspective for me with these words:

"Hey, it is just a ring. It is just an object, no matter how much it symbolises to us. I am still alive, I am still healthy, and the love between us is still very much present. And these are the Real Important Stuff. They cannot be lost,  just like that. And for that we should be thankful." 

you know what? he is so right. and i am so grateful to have him by my side, reminding me of this. it is so easy to fall into the trap of focusing on what we lack and all we have lost. yet it is so much more enriching (and so simple too!) to focus on the other side of things: what we still DO have, what we gain everyday. 

sometimes, our possessions chain us down - to memories, emotions, people, and milestones in our lives. however, all these will always be within us, even when the possessions are gone. they are a part of our being. and no one can take them away from us. 

i am learning every day, to be able to let go - of objects, of the fear of loss (be it money, time, and yes, even lives), and to live fully in each present moment. this simple message from C has allowed me to live with less resentment, fear, and anger. it has helped me channel these into being grateful for the opportunities to learn, to live more freely without self-imposed, unnecessary stress, and to give to others. its amazing how thin the line between these two extreme thought processes is! 

and you know what? i took off my ring after C lost his (did not make much sense to wear mine alone...to me at least!) and it was liberating! one less worry each day! ;)