Friday, February 28, 2014

Purple Haze

Recently, the rugby team here at Sewanee played their last home game, and won to cap off yet another undefeated season! To celebrate this, I thought I'd post some of the pictures I've taken of the team and especially the current seniors over the past two years. Enjoy!






































Wednesday, February 26, 2014

A Difference in Opinion

More than just enabling us to formulate and express our own opinions, I'd like to think that the education that we receive helps us to recognise and respect the fact that others have opinions too, and that these opinions do not necessarily have to align with our own.

Last night, I posted a picture on a social media site that emphasised the importance of loving your neighbour as you love yourself, regardless of the neighbour's race, class, religion or sexuality. I know that this is not a point of view that is shared by everyone, but I figured that those who did not agree would either refrain from commenting, or would express their opinion in a way that led to discussion as opposed to argument.

Unfortunately, I was wrong. I was surprised by the vehemence with which someone told me that my opinion was wrong, and that what a certain group of people did was essentially absolutely immoral. I did try to discuss the comment with this individual, but to no avail. To avoid offending others who may see the picture, I went ahead and deleted the comment, but the surprise still remained.

I know of many others who have experienced similar backlash after expressing their opinions on a variety of topics, and the thing that stands out to me is that most of the backlash comes from the 'older' generation; those who have taught us and guided us and encouraged us to have opinions.

I don't think the world will ever be at a place where everyone agrees with everyone else, and I frankly think that such a world would bore me! I enjoy the talking to intellectuals who have different points of view from myself, and who are able to challenge me to think beyond my own sphere of existence. However, I would like to believe that one day we may reach a point where we are all free to express our opinions, and be respected for them.

Have a great day!

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Letters

I miss them! I really do. Back in the day (....I hate that I'm old enough to say this), I used to send and receive lots. Recently, I decided that enough was enough with the complaining about how much I missed letters, and I decided to start sending them. And sure enough, replies came! Slowly, but surely. Some were short, some took a month or two, but the replies came nonetheless.

Why such an emphasis on good old handwritten letters? First of all, I'm someone who thinks and can express herself much better with pen and paper, as opposed to while using a keyboard. That's not to say that I think there's anything wrong with typing! I send plenty of emails too, and keep in touch with most people via Whatsapp, Gmail, or Facebook. However, I've realised that at times I'm guilty of not putting as much into these online communications as I would a real letter.

Also, those of you who 'do letters' can attest to the fact that it's not just receiving letters which is thrilling, but writing them too! Just yesterday, when I came home from work, I was in a great mood and thought I should channel that toward some letters to friends and family across the globe. Before I knew it, it was an hour and a half later, and I had written five!

Try it out if you never have; I'm not trying to inspire a trend here, but rather share the joy that letter-writing has brought me. They needn't be long or emotional or extremely fancy!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Photoshop Experiment

I did this a couple of years ago, and it took HOURS! Stumbled across it again and thought I should share. None of the pictures are mine, they can all be found on Google.


Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Vacation Destination: New Orleans

This past weekend, I visited New Orleans for the first time ever, and had the absolute best time. I've definitely found a city that I could add to my list of my top three vacation spots, and it especially appealed to me because of its rich history, and the antiques, arts and photography that were on display.

Old homes and buildings absolutely fascinate me. I love learning their history, and exploring the connection with the people who lived or worked at these places in times past. Unfortunately, the historic graveyard we wanted to visit had closed an hour before we got there, but there was plenty of opportunity to see the rich cultural history elsewhere!

I feel like I could talk about the city and the experiences I had there for ages, so I'm going to let the pictures we took do some of the talking!




Oddly enough, I found little reminders of Kenya in NOLA too; I stumbled across a shop that carried Maasai-made souvenirs, and it was nice to have a little piece of home!




While at the French Market, I saw a Sikh at one of the stalls. Being myself, I went over to say hello, and was extremely touched when he said to me "Daughter, sit down and share my meal" (in Punjabi of course).

(Also, I got my palm read outside Jackson Square and was extremely pleased by the fact that my life is apparently going to be awesome. Cha-ching!) 


Another cool reminder of home was when I discovered that the tea in our hotel room was from Kenya!



On Saturday night, we saw one of the parades, the Krewe du Vieux. The masks, beads and boas were great; we had a fantastic view from one of the balconies in the city overlooking the parades, and had lots of extra Mardi Gras beads and boas and other artefacts that we threw to the crowd below (and yes, I did feel like a benevolent goddess at that point).







I absolutely cannot WAIT to go back and visit at some point again. Have a fantastic day, won't you!



Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Snippets of Me

A year ago, I did something rather uncharacteristic and wrote a whole piece about myself. I was hoping to have something more concrete that I could use when somebody asked me to 'tell them about myself'. I'll admit that I got kind of carried away with the whole self-discovery blah-de-blah, but some interesting things did emerge that strike me as being very true about myself (and that I don't mind sharing with my readers). Hope this gives more insight into the craziness that is my mind! (Beware, these are just pieces from the longer article that I wrote, and may at times make no sense at all!)

I love people. Being around them, learning about them, helping them, loving them and learning from them. Yet, it gets tiring sometimes you know? The energy in the people around me most definitely rubs off on me. So sometimes, I like to retreat into my space, and be with my thoughts and music and writing and dreams and silence.
People are surprised when I need time for myself. "But... you're so social! Why do you need to be alone?"
Because I can at the same time be my best friend and my worst critic. 

I think that's my way of self-defense sometimes. In a serious or tense situation, I'll step forward and be the immature person. Or the naive person. Because reality is no fun sometimes. 
There is something important I've learned though; not all successes are successes, and not all failures are failures. Life is definitely easier when I'm trying to live up to my own expectations; and yet at times, harder.

Having grown up so fast, I welcomed with arms wide open the chance to be young. And careless. And free. To make mistakes and enjoy them because I made them all by myself.

I'd like to call myself an old soul, and yet I never want to grow up.
Tea is one of my weaknesses. I’m not a morning person, but my day always starts up with a nice cup of Kenyan tea (with milk of course).
A common thing I do is make a list of whether or not I should do something, get opinions from other people; and then go along with my gut instinct anyway.

In line with my Piscean spiritual nature, I love elemental things. Being at the beach during sunrise, watching the stars, or just gazing at the moon are things I really enjoy. My room this year faces East, so in the morning I get beautiful light pouring into my room. I’m not a morning person at all, so anything that makes mornings great is appreciated. 

Someone read my palm when I was younger and said that I would become a famous author. Haha. One day maybe. Tonight, the papers I have to write for psychology are looming threateningly over my shoulder.


Monday, February 3, 2014

97 Days to Graduation

My goodness. I don't know if the fact that I'll soon be leaving this beautiful place behind has fully sunk in until now.

Before I came to Sewanee, I was a very different person. I definitely wasn't as confident as I am today, or even as appreciative of the people around me or the experiences that I had as I should have been. These past three and a half years have gone a long way into making me into the person that I am today, and saying goodbye is going to be difficult!

I doubt that I can sum up why Sewanee is so great in just one post, so I know I'll have to spread it out over a few. While I'll have the opportunity to reflect on what I'll be leaving behind later on, right now, what's on my mind is what I'll be going towards.

I (and most of my peers) have been students for all our lives. We've had the comfort of Christmas holidays, long summer breaks, and the certainty that we know what's about to come in the next few months; more school.

Scarily enough, this is all about to change. People ask me why I'm not going directly into graduate school, and I give two reasons:
1) To get an MBA, I'd like to have some work experience first.
2) I know how to be a student. I could even argue that I'm pretty good at it. So, I'd love to challenge myself in a new way; by taking on a "real-life" job.

Where am I going to be in May? Honestly, I don't know yet. The question can sometimes scare me, and and at others, motivate me. Many peers I speak to are going through the same things. Some have their post-graduation plans neatly planned out, while some will run far, far away if they're made to think about what they're going to be doing.

Fortunately, thankfully, luckily, (and you get what I'm saying here), I know that wherever I am, it's going to be the best thing for me and I will still be able to learn. I know this not just because my experiences at Sewanee have done a fantastic job of preparing me to handle anything that comes my way, but because I have a strong support system of mentors, family and friends who believe in me.

This reminds me of a time in my final year of secondary school; I had no idea where I was going to be in September, but somehow, Sewanee happened to me, and completely changed my life.
To all the soon-to-be graduates who're terrified by the thought of leaving familiarity behind, know that graduation will not mean the end of friendships and meaningful experiences; rather, we will build up on the ones that we've had, and have some amazing new ones too. Best of luck!

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