My one and only published poem.

Aside from blogging about my traveling or particular interests, a proportion of my writing time is actually dedicated to poems. Unlike articles, it takes much more time to distill and settle. Poems are also much more personal as its flavor is entirely based on the level of emotions poured into it. Anyways, I feel like may be it is an apt timing to share this little poem of mine written 3 years back in New Jersey.

There is a lovely story behind it. During my exchange, I submitted this poem to Rutgers student literary magazine “imaginate zine” and was luckily chosen to be published in volume 2, issue 3! (unfortunately I left U.S already and did not get a copy for myself :/)

But how did I know it was published when I have already left? I actually received a random Facebook message from a caucasian girl:

“Hi this might be really creepy but if you’re the Rachel Cheung who goes to Rutgers and has submitted to this imaginate literary magazine, I just wanted to say that i love your poem “Always here” and it reminds me of my mom who passed away this past halloween. I’m really glad I came across it and I wanted you to know how much I enjoyed it. Hopefully this is the right Rachel lol. Sorry ignore this if it isn’t !
Every time I read this or merely recall the incident, I get goosebumps. Not because I’m so vain into thinking that someone liked my poem, but I am completely swept away by how words connect people and allow readers to  project their own experiences into it. There are infinite possibilities with words and for this sole reason, I come to it whenever I feel that empty hollow feeling in my stomach (no it is not the feeling of being hungry). Be it a brief expression of an instant emotion or well thought out articles; an exciting easy read like The Hunger Games or thought provoking Le Petit Prince, the process just makes me feel alive again.
Always Here

If ever you miss me

Just remember

I am still here

Around you like air

 

I am like air

Can’t touch me

or see me

But please absorb me

Sense me and feel me –

 

I refresh your mind –

intrigue your brain –

excite your bod’

And calm –

your

heart

No less than before

 

Because I am air,

Your kind of air.

Even apart,

I am still around

 

Closer to you

Than anyone else

For I exist wherever

you’re at

 

So breathe me in

Like you would air

As I’ve never left

And am always here

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Tonight, Hong Kong has given me one more reason to be proud of being a Hongkonger.

Tonight, Hong Kong has given me one more reason to be proud of being a Hongkonger.

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The night is long, but a large crowd of people who care about Hong Kong is still out there under the heat. After all that I have witnessed first hand today, I simply cannot put my brain to rest without emptying all my thoughts into words. I first want to put aside the political side of things. Rumor / Truth, I cannot say for sure myself. Everything from now on is what I have heard with my very own ears and seen with my short-sighted eyes.

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The moment I stepped out of Admiralty MTR station, my sight was crowded with tiny dots of heads that seemed to stretch infinitely towards the west and east. As I walked into the crowd, I saw piles of materials: food, umbrellas, water, masks etc. and my heart just warmed. The protestors asked for help: manpower, food, protections; and Hong Kong people answered. I have never seen us being so united and caring. (think of the stares you get when you bumped into someone or when someone stepped on your new shoes accidentally)

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As I sat down, I realised the photos I saw on Facebook, the newspapers, the reporters’ interviews are simply insufficient in capturing the atmosphere here at all. Every few minutes, a volunteer will drop by and offer all kinds of materials that you may need; others are collecting trash AND ALSO RECYCLING THE BOTTLES! Everyone was very self disciplined in using the resources, it was about the greater good of the movement, of Hong Kong, and not about personal gain. People with speakers were doing crowd control, diverging the crowd and reminding us of personal safety. Loads and loads of materials kept coming in and cars passing by were honking to support us. I heard an old man walking along the route giving pep talks to the tired crowd while receiving cheers and applauds from them. Although the people were afraid, (yes, who wouldn’t be after what happened the day before), they still came nonetheless, with thin rain coats, masks and goggles as their only protection.

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At night, I walked from Central to Causeway Bay, I saw people singing our favourite revolution song, Broad Sea and Sky (I supposed that is the best translation I can come up with) with their smartphones’ flash lights on. I heard people applauding to the motorbikers who were transporting materials back and forth. As I arrived Causeway Bay after running into a few familiar faces, I heard the speech of Joshua Wong, a student leader who was recently released after being captured for an unreasonable duration by the police. He and other leaders have big hopes about this movement, but in my humble opinion, I am very worried as to how this will end. Despite how much I want to believe in the power of people, it takes more than a miracle for our fight of democracy. Then I heard a sharing from a British professor who had been teaching about peaceful protests. He said he had never thought of stepping into one in his trip, but he found this to be an excellent example of a peaceful protest. Then I suddenly realised,in the end, it is not merely about what this movement will lead Hong Kong towards .

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At this very moment, we have already showed the world what a city Hong Kong is. With zero vandalism, the buses that were stuck at Admiralty/MK are still perfectly in shape despite of being transformed into the hearse of CY Leung. (Opps.) Shops nearby are not covered in paint and the roads are free of trash! I don’t think you can find any other protests in the world that displayed such high level of self control and discipline. This alone is already a good enough justification to the Occupy Central movement. (which really isn’t JUST about Central, just like how this movement is not just about students anymore.) We are not releasing our resentment in the name of democracy; the high level of self restraint that we have demonstrated only further accentuate our pure will for democracy.

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I have had so many reasons to be proud of coming from Hong Kong. Anyone who has ever lived abroad can surely resonate. Thanks to Hong Kong people, in these few days, you have all given me another reason to be proud of being a Hongkonger.

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In the elevator back home, a foreign lady asked if I was at the movement. She then told me that she was very inspired, and that we should not lose hope because this is HONG KONG. My eyes were blurred by tears as she exit the lift. Hong Kong is and will always be a very special place.

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Enough of me saying, the best way to understand is to see for yourself.

Thank you, Thank you, and a million more thank yous :)

I know I have gotten much much lazier, and so far only updated 3 posts on my exchange in U.S.A, but people still come to my little space and nothing makes me happier than seeing the number of visitors go up (despite my laziness.) Anyway, this took a little longer than the original momentum suggested, but finally, the first milestone – 4000 views. Thank you for every one of you out there who stay tuned, has once read this little blog of mine, or simply mistakenly clicked into my posts. Mr./Ms 4000 view of my blog, you are one special person, who seem to come from either Russia or Korea 😉

I have probably mentioned before that unlike Europe, this exchange in U.S have been much more demanding and I am occupied on many levels, a lot is happening both emotionally and physically (yes, healthy lifestyle), I am so absorbed in certain aspects that have taken up more of my time than it should, but I know I can never cut down on my writing. The sound of typing on my keyboard must be the most soothing rhythm on earth. Along with a cup of hot coffee/tea/ Godiva CHOCOLATE! and snuggling up in my room is the best remedy to anything.

Although I have gotten lazier, I have managed to write a lot in my private little log and perhaps one day I will feel like sharing those as well 🙂

Either way, this blog, will always hold a special place in my heart because it was with me at a time that I was most alone. It filled my emptiness and decorated my inner space with stars and fireworks. So here’s to more luck, wanderlust and love in life for everyone! ❤

This is just me, being throughly warm, which has been quite awhile ago really…waking up to -1C is no fun at all.

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Stay tune for more posts to come on miscellaneous in U.S., New York with my bb (!!) and the journey to Cali ( SOON)!

Here is a sneak peak to my new bb, who have been with me for 6 weeks now! ❤

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SEVEN ELEVEN

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Seven Eleven. NO, not the convenient stores! I meant my little monsters’ birthday! 🙂 My most beloved twin monster boys. Happy 10th Birthday!

Ryan: Sis, I am so old, I will be double digit now 😦

Oh come on! Here I am on my very last summer (provided that I don’t further study other degrees) and you still got so many bright summers ahead of you.

Like last year, we don’t get to celebrate together, but up to date, I think we are all used to not spending these special dates side by side. Well doesn’t matter, there will be many many more to come 🙂

Ryan and Ronny, with all my blessings, I hope you both grow tall and handsome.

Dear God, I pray that you smile on my little brothers, inside and out, they’re better than I am.

Love,

Sissy.

P.S. Yea, sort of love 😉

Oh and that’s the boys “getting married” 3 years back 😉

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Growing up part 1

 

ImageThose are raw carrots. Yes, I washed them, removed their skin and chopped them. To bring to school for “snacks”

SINCE when do I actually eat carrots? Well, I guess part of growing up, is to do things that are not the most desirable, by are good for ourselves.

My strategy is to eat it when I am most hungry. That way, my standard for food would reduce to zero and thus whatever I eat becomes 10 times more bearable. For carrots…it didn’t work THAT well but I am trying. 🙂

On the other hand,  I have just finished this heavenly pack of chocolate: Creme Brulee flavor, there were actually burnt caramel crumbs INSIDE it. Oh my gooood. Now that I have finished it,  I can buy a new flavor next time 🙂 When I am back from SSSsssssspain. 

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It is all about treating yourself a little better 🙂 every day. 

 

Like a Child – Circus

Oh my, it has been ages since I have the time to write this. Too much planning to do, but I am glad I’m all set until Early March, and already starting to plan for April and May with my beloved roommate 🙂 There will be posts about my trips to 6 other cities by early Mar 😀 😀

So apart from researching on how to get to where and where to go next… we managed to make it to a FREE circus festival in Monaco (yes, again, it is quite a pretty place with nice people.) We have seen Monaco at it’s prettiest our first time, and this time it was just non-stop pouring -_-

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Anyway Monaco is now officially my favorite country, because their hotels provide FREE FOOD! First stop: Silence Auction at Marriott Hotel. There were free Nespressor, Coffee, Tea, Juice Pastry ( I had one of each: Croissant, pain au chocolate and pain au raisins ^^) and fruits (which I did not eat… my skin wasn’t thick enough). And nothing can make me happier than free food. Well there were also circus related things that date back hundreds of years such as posters, photos, magazines etc. It was quite interesting (I don’t remember much apart from the delicious pastries and English Breakfast Tea :P)

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Then we saw so many clowns along the way. They were adorable.

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And it is the time for the preview of Circus show! I briefly remember that I have seen one, where there are animals and gummy bears, but I am not too sure if it was just a dream because it is too vague. This time, however, was such an old-fashion, traditional circus.

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There were cages, hand-painted banners, red carpet, dome shape white tents, clowns, lions and tigers and horses and piglets OH MY Gooooodness and cotton candy and popcorn. That smell combined with horse shit is the defining smell of CIRCUS.

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We sat down on a really good seat because we started waiting like 1.5 hours before it and I felt like a little kid. I could not stop jumping on my seat because I was just too excited. Although I felt like a kid, I am no longer one :/, so I was not invited to sit at the VIP row, which was partly reserved for kids, how sweet is that 🙂

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Then the show start with an old man with beard, black hat and red blazer, boots and white pants. It was just like dumbo. It was a different experience really, it was colorful and cheerful. The lighting and performance was rather intriguing and eerie, but all in all very enjoyable.

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Then we wrapped our circus day with an exhibition on circus costumes and paintings which was again, very colorful and cheerful.

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It is an amazing day because 1) we never thought we will make it to something special like this 37th Circus Festival 2) it was never in our plan.

Perhaps sticking rigidly to a plan is not the best way to experience. Perhaps it is best that things go wrong (I.E. being pushed around, and hair pulled when getting on a bus in the rain, I do not understand why people never line up) and eventually you feel much more.

Random…

This morning when I was woken up by outrageously noisy sound from outside at 8:30 am, I suddenly realized – I am in France. I am WAKING UP, in FRANCE. Such a strange feeling that I am still not used to after being here for 2 weeks.

Nothing much for these couple of days. There are however several rather peculiar incidences.

1) Time: 12:15 am Jan 14

Venue: outside of our apartment building

It was a buddy party yesterday and buses stop service at 9 so we had to walk back. It was fun walking back with not a single shadow on the street except the 3 of us. So we were chatting and laughing all the way till our lobby.

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There is a black sensor thing that is attached to our home key to open the glass door at the lobby. We always have one that works, and one that doesn’t. At 12:15 am, we realized we took the wrong one.

So we are locked outside, panicking for 10 minutes. No one is going to leave the building until 6 am when they walk their dogs. It wasn’t freezing outside and I did not need to use the toilet, but waiting outdoor for 7 hours instead of curling up in my warm bed is just a very unwelcoming idea.

Then our savior appeared, who is also from our university. That is how lucky (and careless) we are.

2) Time: 11:45pm Jan 15

Venue: Home

So here I am, looking up where to go and how to get there, I realized something’s wet behind me… my bottle leaked again. I cannot get any clumsier. Ok no problem, I will just clear things out and let the bag dry. BUT NO WAIT, I have my bank notification letter for opening bank account inside,, and that’s how it looks like

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Thank god I did not discover this tomorrow when I am in the bank, that would be really odd.

 

Today we went to Carrefour again, and I SAW THIS.

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I thought I was in Heaven for 10 seconds. It wasn’t just chocolate, it was dessert flavored ones. Whoever came up with this brilliant idea deserves a Nobel Prize for Peace. Seriously, chocolate makes the world a better place 😉

The coco crunch animal looks different here

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And today the moon was smiling at me. 🙂