Sunday, December 16, 2012

The Princess Who Kisses the Frogs Kisses Again

This isn’t the fairytale that we are familiar with. But let me tell you of a story of a princess who kisses the frogs. Only that they’re not real frogs. And she’s not a real princess. She’s a real human just like you and me. And just like us, she never stops hoping that one day the frog she kisses would turn out to be the prince that she has been waiting for.

She’s quite way past the prime of her life. Though in her golden years, fortunately, she still manages to look in her late thirties. She contends that no matter how we age, we still search for Mr. Right in the same fashion as we do in our 20s. And I think she’s right.

After several occasions when she was left heart broken, a bright and optimistic lady rises above- picking up the pieces of a broken heart just like how pieces of puzzle are fitted in a wooden heart pattern. The process wasn’t easy. It's a fact that healing in any form whether it’s physical or emotional takes a great deal of time for wounds to dry up.

Sure, she goes through crying, occasional melancholic moods and feeling of emptiness especially during times when she misses being with someone. But one thing that she never fails to do is to take risks and gives herself a chance to love again. “Love is a wonderful thing . I will never give up on love.” She proudly claims.

Soon, she’s going to kiss a frog again which she hopes would turn out to be a prince. I curiously asked “What if this frog won’t turn out to be your prince?”  Then she replied “He won’t turn out to be a prince without a kiss. So I better kiss him and see what happens. If he doesn’t I’ll kiss another frog in the future, but if he does, then we’ll live happily ever after.”

Now, the princess is back.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Here's My Number

Everybody has got a special day in his life that deserves a monster celebration. And I just had mine in June. Believe it or not, the big 5-0 has finally arrived. Yes, you heard me well. Let me say it again. I just turned fifty. Not that I was exuberantly anticipating to reach this age. On the contrary, I was wishing that I’d stay forty nine in the next few years and never to move from there.( Wish I could lower the number than forty nine but I think that's pushing my luck already.)

However, all of a sudden, I reflected on the glorious years backwards. My eyes suddenly opened to the fact that I’ve already reached the pinnacle of a woman’s blossoming years. I looked back to the past with a grateful heart thanking God that His hands were upon me as I survived the highs and lows of the rollercoaster moments of my life blessed with the protection of a secured safety harness of His love.

 Isn’t that amazing? What else can I ask for?

Truthfully, announcing to the whole world of Facebook and Twitter that I just turned 50 is not something as interesting as announcing a store’s big 50 percent closing out sale.  

Admitting to friends and in worse case, announcing to social networking crowd that you’re a half century old especially those women like me may not be a smart idea. Albeit shows sheer honesty a dauntless move and boldness as bungee jumping in topless.

Either that or you get suspected that you just smoked something illegal for you to be able to write a what-the-hell-was-I-thinking-post saying “I’m celebrating my 50th today. Yey!”  Translated as “Hey peeps, I’m expected to have hot flashes any time soon.” Yeah, right. Go and announce it to the world.

To be honest, fear started to cripple me as months approached my golden year. Ok, here’s the list of my version of sum of all fears-fear of wrinkles, sagging breasts, wider hips, more gray hair, thick cellulite, prominent varicose veins, uncontrollable weight gain and women’s number one enemy- abdominal obesity. 

Oh, did I mention the stigma of being labeled as menopausal?  regarded as too matronly- sexy in a dignified way but a little less on the hot chic trendy sexy –in other words lower market value started to haunt me.

All of those and the insecurity of less sexually hot anymore but experiencing hot flashes instead is quite overwhelming. All too much for a woman who couldn’t accept that party is over.

On a hindsight, as I pondered on this age dilemma personal issue, I stopped and mulled over- what’s there really to be terrified about being fifty? 

Isn’t this the age that any woman should be proud of? If you come to think of it, the laugh lines above my cheekbones bespeak of how much I see humor in every awkward situation that any young person would’ve frowned about. Wrinkles are sign of wisdom and deeper concern about the future. Sagging breasts remind of maternal love and nurturing a child’s life. Weight gain symbolizes the changes in a woman’s body undergoing stress under pressure while surviving the intricacies of every stage of life.

Reaching 50 is a shining privilege. Reality is-not everybody gets the chance to reach this stage unfortunately. It’s like a reaching a high level status indicating your accomplishments in life and yet survived the strongest hurricanes in love, career, family and health. With all my life’s experiences, I may have been tossed , twirled, slammed and crushed and yet,  I am still standing.

By and large, women of 50 like me are women with a heart made of rock but dashed with golden stardust. One who struggled but emerged with grace and regality like a swan paddling her webbed feet furiously under water gliding  through with poise and serenity afloat.

After saying this, don't you just feel majestic? I do.

 Now, seriously, tell me why I wouldn’t be proud of being a golden girl?

 They say that wine tastes better with age. With hot flashes or not, we definitely still taste a lot better.  Let's drink to that.


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

How Far Can You Go?

Few years ago, I had an ideal notion of what a runner was like-sporty, one who makes running a career, joins serious marathon of 42 km stretch, heavily toned muscles, owns all sorts of branded running shoes and updates himself with the latest high tech gadget to boost his passion for running.

Well….. I’m none of the above. And I don’t own any of those.  But I consider myself a runner. I only have two reliable Nike running shoes, an old light pocket sized mp3 player and a handy smart phone that keeps me hooked up with Runkeeper- an app that calculates my distance, time and calories lost. That’s all.

As a matter of fact, I discovered only the joy of running in my late 40’s which is kinda late. But after poisoning myself with toxic chemicals of cigarettes for six years, I decided to wage war on smoking and successfully winning the battle so far.  Thereafter, I mustered the courage to turn over a new leaf- a smart shift to healthy lifestyle. It was then when running became a part of my rigid twice a week grind. Translated as, if I miss a weekday run- I make up for the weekends. 

Long time ago, running was utterly improbable for me since I wasn’t fit for any strenuous exercise due to asthma that I battled with since I was in 2nd grade. Oh well, in as much as the spirit was willing, but the flesh was literally weak too.Until one day, I just felt like somebody smacked me in the head that I imagined seeing stars moving around my head ( minus a little bird flying ) like in cartoons urging me to take a look at the flabs around my hips, sagging arms and a big chunk of abdominal fat jiggling like a jello . So I tried brisk walking. I thought, what the heck!  So I did. At least for a couple of years.

The challenged then was that I undermined myself that brisk walking was all what I was only capable of until I told myself, “No, wait a second. I think I can do more than this.” I knew I could.” Surprisingly, you wouldn’t imagine what one’s will power and determination can do. Guess what? I did it. I ran my first kilometer accomplishment that I almost celebrated treating my colleagues some ice cream except that icecream will make me gain more calories( not good for a new runner then.)

Moreover, I didn’t just limit myself to running but I crossed trained in badminton as well. I admit, beating the drum about this small feat is not about physical strength and agility  but the minuscule step I attempted  was the beginning of my love affair with running. It was literally love at first try.

Did you know that finishing the first 5 km (3.10 mi) run is as rewarding as passing a board examination that after going through a rigorous six month review period- you reach the feeling of completion of your end goal.

My jaw dropped once I read about a Nike running commercial slogan  that says “What are you running for?” That’s a good question actually. Well, initially for me, to keep me away from smoking that’s the official and the unofficial ( and the truth)  to lose weight.

However, as I was getting the hang of running, I noticed that things have started to change. I’m loving every single moment…every stride…. and every kilometer I pass… moments of solitude…communing with nature… wind touching my face… crisp winter air… sun rays touching my skin… music pounding into my ears and  Runkeeper”s nagging voice uttering a resounding “activity completed!” And most of all, I cherish the chance to whisper a small prayer or the time to thank God for His goodness as I pound pavements.

These are more than enough reasons to motivate me   get on my feet every  Saturday morning. All of these surpassed the physical benefits of running. Running has become more of a joy into my soul and a test of my character, will power, endurance and determination.

I run not only during bright sunny days. I run in sub-zero temperatures, scorching heat, light snowy day, drizzling, tired from work, busy, feeling blue,  ecstatic, in love 
( that makes me run fast) and heart broken( that makes me run even faster.)

 I go straight ahead, all the way round, change route, go short cut, uphill and then downhill- ( which is the best -my cloud nine.) It   doesn’t matter where my feet direct me. I just take my running shoes and off I go.

 Running ( or any physical strenuous activity) defines one’s character. How well can you endure hurdles to push yourself to the limit. Sounds parallel to our perspective about life, doesn’t it? Would you quit when challenges get in the way or would you stay on steady course?

After falling in love with running, my honeymoon with it comes when running reminds me every time that “ Life is not a sprint.  It is more like a marathon.” It’s not how fast you go but how far can you go. Don’t get conscious of how you’d design your future, plan your week or how you’re going to fill up your day. Just go with the flow. You’ll never know what’s going to be like tomorrow and where will it lead you.

John Bingham, the American Marathon runner said “ If you run, you are a runner. It doesn’t matter how fast or how far. It doesn’t matter if today is your first day or if you’ve been running for twenty years. There’s no test to pass. No license to earn. No membership card to get. You just run.”

Take the challenge. Just run. Or do whatever you want to do. Go where the wind takes you.  But enjoy the twirl. Then see how far can  you go.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

More Spring Collection

Please excuse me. Blogger has changed its format on uploading my posts and it's making me so confused. Let me try to upload some more pics in here.

My Spring Collection

If you’re thinking that this is all about spring fashion clothes collection, well, sorry to disappoint you- you’re wrong. Since Spring is about to end soon and summer is right just around the corner, I figured to post some pictures that highlight why I love Spring.. I know you may have your reasons too. Feel free to share it with me. I would love to see them.

You must have seen these pics on Facebook if you’re my FB friend since I have been posting gorgeous flowers like crazy. But if you haven’t seen them all, here’s something to brighten up your Spring. Remember, Spring reminds us of a new beginning in whatever form that is- maybe a start of a new life, new hope, new relationship or a  new job. It doesn’t matter whatever it is  for as long as it gives us life’s second chance.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

A Day in Vienna

What I like about living in Europe is that you don’t only have to take the plane or a train to cross over to another country. Sometimes all you need is a reliable car plus a visa ( that’s if you need one) and off you go.

During my trip to Vienna, a six hour drive from Croatia, I kinda braced myself for unexpected surprise that may come along the way. Not necessarily bad though considering that it was Friday the 13th. We know that anything can happen that can either bring the best or the worst in you.

My main purpose of visiting Vienna was not to sight see and rediscover Mozart’s home country. But to do some official business at the embassy. Since the embassy’s consular services work up to 4 pm only, I was under a lot of nerve wracking time pressure. Thankfully, my friend who was kind hearted enough to drive me from Zagreb to Vienna while I snoozed off was as cool as cucumber. So he kept my strained emotions at bay.

Though he was expecting me to help him navigate through the map ( no GPS in his car unfortunately. I agreed at first but uhmm there was only a slight problem, I don’t know how to read maps. I turned the map upside down and then turned it sideways just to see where we were but I couldn’t find it. So, I got a better idea. I slept in the car so I got a good excuse.

We arrived almost past lunch time. As soon as we reached there, it was crunch time. We’ve got only approximately 2 hours and a half before closing. We were given instructions by a friendly and nice Turkish businessman who owns a Jewelry Shop to park the car and go by tram and subway to our destination.
That’s when the misadventure started.

We bought tram tickets but we didn’t know where to get off until we asked a pleasant old man to help us which stop we need so we could catch the train heading to other side of the town. He mentioned U-ban which is an equivalent of a subway. Then the train has a diagram of stopping points where passengers can glance for guidance but the Austrian names that are as long as their Frankfurters are not only tongue twisting but confusing as well. So after stepping on a few wrong platforms and asking more than 10 people for directions, we finally made it to the embassy and did what I had to do.

Now the challenge after that was how to get back on the street where we parked our car. Then tracing back how we came in was like having a feeling of Hansel and Gretel tracing back the trail of bread crumbs in the woods to reach home. Along the way, we had encounters with different pecular reactions from people on the street as we asked for directions in macaronic language- German, English and Croatian.

We even had a bizarre encounter with a middle aged lady, reddish watery eyes obviously wasted since she was holding a can of Heineken who stopped my friend and moved her face closer to his- stepping on his personal space like she was about to kiss him. Then with a very soft voice she whispered something that made my friend react and said “ Oh so you have a secret?”

Then the lady raised her voice a bit and said “No, I said, do you have a cigarette?”
Then we understood what she meant and in fairness to her, she gave us directions as she slurred.

Finally, we reached the parking space area and felt it was close to home when we saw the car. Two cups of coffee and short stroll after, we got back to the car and found our bread crumbs again drove out of Vienna…Gratz…then Maribor ( Slovenia) and finally Zagreb.

It’s good to be back home.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Stop and Smell the Flowers

On the way to my appointment, I passed a huge park situated at the heart of the town center. My attention was caught by a tree filled with blooming dainty white with a tinge of lilac flowers-all over the tree crown.

It was at the height of its bloom which is why petals fell on the ground like a bed sprinkled with rose petals. But, it isn’t rose petals this time but magnolia. On the tree you can’t even spot a green hue since there was no single leaf but only pure flowers.

It was a breathtaking sight to behold. Since I had some extra 30 minutes left before my appointment, I sat down on a bench next to the tree and indulged my eyes with the amazing beauty of nature that God has bestowed on us. I couldn’t believe that I was staring at the real scene and not just a downloadable computer wallpaper.

Instantaneously, I felt that my stress level was reduced not a smidge but by half level at least. No matter how busy we are, it’s really worth to stop and smell the flowers.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Thanks, But No Thanks to Big Erasers.

I think this is the biggest eraser I’ve ever seen. I found this one few months ago in a bookstore. I grabbed it at once (and took a picture of it with my smartphone. ) I wasn't sure if I'd need it. That's why I didn't buy it.

But a little voice inside my head kept whispering like “don’t you wish that you could erase away all the mistakes you made in your life with this pink rubber eraser?”

Hmmm …. Well, ofcourse , don’t we all? We hope that wrong decisions, inappropriate reactions or unintentional bad actions are mistakes that could be wiped out in one sweep. Like as if it never happened, right?

Whenever we make an unwise decision, it may be a failure in a relationship, a bad choice of words, a wrong career path or may be as trivial as wrong brand of clothes softener, we always say with regret that “I should’ve done this or I should’ve done that instead”.

We blame ourselves or better yet, do everyone’s favorite thing to do, blame others. In my case, I blame others less but do the opposite more. I beat myself up spending sleepless nights with what-in-the-world-was-I-thinking?!

Until my unconscious miscalculation keeps on niggling at the back of my mind as I over analyze things or situations that I could’ve done better.

Ok I’m guilty because what I’m doing ( blaming myself) is not far better than blaming others. Although I’ve to say that blaming others is more fun than blaming myself.

However, on a hindsight, mistakes happen for a reason. It makes our perspective wider when we look into other directions for possible options to rectify what we’ve done wrong. In the same vein as, this brings us down to our knees and seek God’s guidance seriously ( knowing that the bigger the blunder, the more serious we are with our prayers, right?) so He could show us a lesson or two that He intends us to learn from it.

In other words, making mistakes should be perceived more as a boon than a bane since it molds us and fortifies our character with strength, resiliency and humility.

So, who needs big erasers anyway? Well, for sure, I don’t.

How about you?

Monday, February 13, 2012

My Love Affair with Mr. Wolf

Since it’s Valentine’s Day, I deem that this is the right time to reveal the secret love affair that I kept three years ago. Yes, I had an enchanting love affair with Mr. Wolf that lasted for six blissful years.

I thought I couldn’t live without him. Every single waking day, he was the first thing in my mind. I couldn’t sleep without thinking about him. I always remember how after dinner I’d dash to call him right away. There was something about him that made my heart jumped all the time.

At work, I couldn’t wait to take my break. I often sneaked out and sauntered gingerly to meet Mr. Wolf at our rendezvous place. I didn’t realize that Mr. Wolf meant to me more than I ever imagined. He was the best friend I never had. The confidant that never judged. The lover that kept me craved for more. And the companion that was always available for me anytime of the day and anywhere I wanted. I was completely enamored by his irresistible charm.

And yes, Mr. Wolf is hot. If that’s what you want to know. It’s true. I openly admit that I was completely in love with Mr. Wolf. But wait a second, it’s not what you think it is. I’m talking about Walter Wolf- long filters packed in golden flip top case in full flavor.

This is all about my nicotine addiction that lasted for six years before I kicked off the filthy habit. If you think that the long challenging journey to a smoke free life is as easy as a pie, then think again. The truth was I had to win over the battle over cigarettes every single day. It was more like a tug-o-war between me vs. myself. Everyday brought a new hope that I’d stop and give my tired worn out lungs a fresh new pinkish color. I relentlessly persevered thinking that French proverb “Rome wasn’t built in a day.”

Whenever I failed to keep my commitment to myself, I always mustered the tenacity to do it all over again the next day. So, basically, I learned to live one day at a time.

Would you like to know how I did it? Here’s how I made it happen.
When I moved to live in Southeast Europe, my stress level of adjusting to a new country embracing a different culture skyrocketed. On top of pressures of living in a foreign land, the language barrier was the biggest cause of my headaches- groping the meaning of Slavic words which consisted of more consonants than vowels gave me more stress induced skin problems ( it isn’t easy to harden up your tongue with the Russian sounding rolling R, let me tell you.) This is why I found myself lost in translation in countless occasions.

I got introduced to a culture where smoking is widely acceptable, approved with two thumbs up and considered almost the norm in the society done by equal number of males and females. Everywhere you look people smoke. It’s either you go against them and get a second hand smoke or you join them and be a part of the smoking community. Either way, you’ll get it.

However, being formerly married to a professional smoker, by professional I mean consuming a pack and a half a day) didn’t help at all. On the contrary, it even encouraged me to take up this new formed habit seriously until I finally made a career out of it since we considered this as something we enjoyed doing together equally romantic as a dinner by candlelight date. We smoked together before and after a meal and whenever we felt the adrenalin pump kicks in the middle of suspense thriller like “Final Destination”. Then my ex-husband and I had to pause DVD to take a Walter Wolf breather at the balcony to calm down high wired nerves and to guess who the next victim is or who’ll kill who.

At work, things were no different. During my 30 minute break, my smoking buddies went to a special place we mused as holy ground that we named “Mr. Bush”- not after the former US President, George W. Bush. But it’s more like a reminder of “The Burning Bush.” Yes, literally it’s a thick bush hanging over a corner house’s garden fence. Hence the name. This spot, a stone’s throw away from the work place is where we ensconced ourselves and exchanged smoke rings while we vented out our personal issues. It’s more like headquarters for girl power movement or an informal street psycho therapy -in my case with my beloved, colleague, Nancy who never complained listening to my woes and blues. So imagine during four seasons rain, drizzle, scorching heat, heavy snow or flurries we showed our unwavering loyalty to Mr. Bush. There we worshipped the burning bush with our full flavor smokes. Aahh who cares about storm, hail or avalanche!

Smoking was not only a golden habit for me, but more like a part of my daily routine from the moment I started my day with morning coffee (The best time to get my nicotine fix. Ok not only the best time but are you kidding? caffeine plus nicotine? That’s an explosive combo) until few hours before I went to bed.

The unbreakable routine that didn’t respect any reasons for a total halt
stayed with me even a month after I got hospitalized with Pneumonia. I was so in love with Mr. Walter Wolf that no amount of sickness could break us apart. Actually, we stuck together in sickness and in health like a real husband and wife who pledged faithfulness till death do us part (well, in the case of a smoker, that’s what’s going to happen anyway.)

I had been going through the same struggles until two years after, the desire to quit became stronger and ofcourse harder. I started to loathe the stinky smell on my clothes, hair and breath and the wheezing sound in my lungs before I went to sleep. In other words, the smoking ghost started to haunt me every single night.

I got so desperate and mustered the courage to try everything including alternative untraditional methods just to get rid of the filthy habit.
First the book, Allen Carr’s “Easy Way to Stop Smoking”. I read the book slowly so I could digest every word. Memorized some lines. Highlighted striking sentences with marker. Bookmarked the last page read, then after, I went lighting up a stick again. I’m not saying that the book is not effective. It is. As a matter of fact, I’ve learned a few tricks from it too. But I was so anxious to do things the fastest way.

Second attempt was the quota for the day method. The first quota I set for myself then was 3 sticks a day. Proud like a peacock, I was telling everyone loftily with heavy denial that “I’m not a smoker”, which I wished that I had worn a T-shirt saying “I’m not a smoker instead of convincing everyone the lie that I put in my head. What are 3 sticks anyway?! It’s not much. But when I recalculated, ok, 3 sticks a day multiplied by 30 days in a month that’s solid 90 sticks a month! Holy Smokes, that’s a lot! I stifled nervousness and feigned fake confidence. Focusing on the 3 and ignoring the 90 by choice.

Ofcourse, as time goes by, 3 a day didn’t stay 3 but 7 then progressed to 10 and from 10 to 15 then 18 on regular days and during stressful days 20- which is actually 18 ( since I refused to count the 2 to fool myself that I was still consuming less than a pack.) But in reality, I’ve gone over and above the quota of 3 sticks. It’s now a pack. At this point, I was officially on the professional level.

So who was I kidding here? Ok you don’t need to answer that. I endured heavy consternation and the humdrum Math exercise of counting cigarette sticks on a daily basis. Something that I could have used for my preschool class for Math practice with sum up to 20. Seriously, it daunted me since it has slowly affected my physical health.

On top of this, I started tossing and turning and having some nightmares-waking in the middle of the night in cold sweat and dreaming about quitting smoking. The more I went through this at night, the more I smoke during the day. It was being agitated about the thought of quitting smoking and consequently, I smoked more.
How ironic, huh? But it’s true.

This went on and on for a few months until one day, somebody handed me a CD on Hypnosis- Stop Smoking Within One Hour by Susan Hepburn a renowned psychotherapist in the UK.

Like a curious first timer in hypnosis, my fear was not to be able to snap out of it. Though it was a self-hypnosis without the guidance of a professional in white coat dangling a pendant right on my face while I lie down on a couch. I didn’t know whether doing hypnosis on my own is a better idea than with a trained professional. But at that point I didn’t care.

Surprisingly, it was utterly as easy as a walk in the park. All you have to do is to follow instructions in the same way as you follow simple directions from a packet of instant noodle soup and voila!

And so I did.

After going through the whole nine yards, I opened my eyes dreading the real litmus test, to see how effective the hypnotherapy is. They say that the proof of the pudding is in the eating. So I followed my ex husband (now and my ex smoking partner too) to the kitchen the moment he lit up.

I was hoping for fireworks to happen to create some kind of magic to kill the cravings so I wouldn’t grab a stick and light up. As it turned out, no sparks of magic was needed at all because there were no cravings and no urge to smoke at all. The most amazing part was I never felt that I was a smoker.

It felt like I was unshackled instantly and gained an indescribable liberation from a bad habit that was eating up the whole me.

Living a healthy smoke free life for three years now is such a pure joy. This month, I’m celebrating my brand new life. Thanking God for using the person who gave me not just a CD but a gift of life. I thank God for reminding me that my father who died of lung cancer would’ve been the happiest that I did it.

It’s amazing how I got the chance again to breathe and smell the clean whiff of fresh air, appreciate the palatability of food and the real taste of strong espresso coffee again. Aaahhh, life is not only good.

It’s way a lot better than that.

Though I miss Mr. Wolf’s unfaltering fidelity to me everytime I think about him, but I’m not sorry to say that my love affair with him is over. We had shared lovely unforgettable time together. But the good times are over. I enjoyed every moment until I puffed my last.

Happy Valentine’s Everyone! Enjoy a smoke free life!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Thumbs Up and Thumbs Down List for 2011 Part II

Sorry it took a few days before I released my thumbs down list. I just needed some time off to take down the tree and finished up left over food and ofcourse and to vegetate after the New Year frenzy.

Here it is now, the second part that I promised-my thumbs down list for 2011

1.Touch Screen
My friends keep on telling me that I’ll get used to touch screen. Ok, after using this phone for more than a month now,I am still not used to it. I don’t have a fat finger problem. But my problem is more on how hard I press the screen especially whenever I send text message and chats. It seems like the keys on the touch screen ( by the way I’m using HTC Wildfire S) are too close and the spaces are not enough for my finger to press a letter. And you could just imagine how one time it ended up like a disaster when I rushed and typed the word “clock”. That ended up as “cock.” Nice!

2.Spending Christmas Alone
Worst thing ever. This is a double thumbs down for me. The spirit of Christmas is joyous season to be with your family. But spending it alone (either because of some personal or work related reasons) will somehow make you feel the blues of the season. If you’re a home alone hater like me during Christmas, it’s sensible that you should try to attend to Christmas parties to boost your morale a bit instead of joining a pity party which I did and wasn’t even dressed up properly for it.

3.Break Up:
Gee, breaking up before Christmas is a very bad move. I know it’s inevitable and nobody schedules a breakup with your partner. Like“ honey, how about we postpone our split- up since it’s just weeks before Christmas? Can we just make our breakup one of our new year’s resolution for 2012?”

Two of my friends had a bad breakup months before Christmas. Don’t ask how their holiday went like. No amount of presents, parties and movie marathon cheered them up (ok shopping did- only temporarily though. Thankfully it did!) Basically, having friends who are heart broken during the Christmas season, made me discover a second career for myself- a Christmas mascot. For interested parties, booking is six months in advance.

4.No Internet during Christmas holiday
You gotta be kidding me. No internet during this time of the year is like having the urge to smoke without cigarettes. You’ll be irritable, sweating, struggling with headaches and swearing a lot. When all your friends, colleagues and family are on Facebook, it’s the easiest way to reach out to them and give them your Christmas greetings at the convenience of your home. Ok I know you got Facebook now on our phone. Say what you want to say but it isn’t the same as you are on the computer. If you call technical services of your network about your internet problems and you get a we’ll- fix –the- problem- after -the –holiday- response then you’re doomed. It’s like having a toothache during the two week Christmas holiday and all dentists are out for a vacation. Then, you’ll just have to take your chances on any type of pain reliever. Good luck!

5.Food Pushers
What may be acceptable to you may NOT be acceptable to us. That’s the beauty of cultural diversity. We are all not the same. Our cultural practices vary and depend on where we come from. In some countries like in the Philippines, we show guests hospitality by offering our native delicacies. We put food on the table and allow the guest to choose which ones he’d prefer to eat (ofcourse we don’t push duck embryo to our guests.) We don’t want their government to put a travel ban to the Philippines because of that. But here in Croatia, it’s the exact opposite. Hospitality and warm acceptance are exhibited by getting into your plate literally especially by the old people ( who know the art of blending the taste of Sarma-stuffed sour cabbage.) What they’d do is push you to eat what they’d put on your plate. And you’re expected to finish everything or else they’d get offended if you don’t. I know they mean well, but I never got used to food pushers. Next time, I encounter food pushers, I’ll pout. If that doesn’t work, I’d pretend I got a tummy ache.

6.Bourne Legacy

I’m an avid follower of the Bourne book series. What precipitates my adrenalin to pump up while I read is the visualization of Matt Damon as Jason into the story. Unexpectedly, the soon to be released film Bourne Legacy later this year will not leave any legacy without Matt Damon in it. I’m not saying that this upcoming movie will not be spectacular( haven’t seen the trailer yet.) I’m sure it will exceed or at least a little bit closer to the previous sequels. However, viewers like me, associate Jason Bourne with Matt Damon for years. And it’s not going to be same with a different persona.

But hey, a good movie is a good movie. Let’s wait and see if Jeremy Renner will be at par with the only Jason Bourne I know.

Now it’s your turn. Tell me what’s yours.