Whisper words of wisdom, let it be

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In recent times I’ve come across a number of quotes through social media. Not all are by established or renowned people. I’m anyway not an avid reader or a follower of any philosopher / writer/ poet, but I do understand & like some of Buddha’s teachings. When I think of ‘words of wisdom’ , I think of Buddha immediately. His quotes are simple & easy to understand and can be put to use at any stage of life that one is in. Having said that they’re easy to understand, they’re not that simple to practice day-in and day-out in life. Sigh!

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I’ve made a note of 10 of them that really resonate with me. I think these are applicable irrespective to the time or phase of life that one is in.

1. You only lose what you cling to.

2. In the end only three things matter : how much you loved, how gently you lived and how gracefully you let go of things not meant for you.

3. Before you speak let your words pass through three gates. Is it true? Is it necessary? Is it kind?

4. Weak people revenge, strong people forgive, intelligent people ignore.

5. Never regret being a good person to the wrong people. Your behaviour says everything about you, and their behavior says enough about them.

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6. Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon and the truth

7. Faith and prayer are both invisible  but they make the impossible things possible.

8. Pain is certain, suffering is optional.

9. The root of suffering is attachment.

10. The mind is everything, what you think you become.

Have you come across any other quotes that you relate to? They don’t necessarily need to be by Buddha.. Share in the comments below!

Have a wonderful weekend you all. It’s summer here in India, may we tackle this heat with a cool mind. Namaste!

Lots of love,

The Silent Hummer.

Franchua D’Souza

 

 

 

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All I ask you, is let me be there

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Hi everyone,

The only thing on my mind right now is Travel. OK, not the only thing. But I really want to go out, explore, meet new people, make travel pals, and see the world. It’s not only about seeing the popular and fancy destinations, but I look forward to the simple and humble ones too. I want to have experiences, I want to tell stories.

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Travel has taught me so much. As I look back, I’ve noticed how I’ve evolved as a traveler, right from chalking out the entire itinerary days in advance, to packing accordingly, to learning to navigate through Google maps (I’m still terrible at this), and to realizing that souvenirs are not meant to be bought like you’re Santa Claus. While planning your stay, Sure, it’s easy to just book the first fancy hotel you see on the list and trust that everything will be perfect in terms of amenities, safety, and service. But that comes with a huge price! If you have the moolah, why not, right? But it’s a different experience altogether researching about the locations you’d be visiting, their distance from your hotel to help you save International travel time, the offers going on etc. I can proudly say that I’ve loved my stay at the luxurious Parisian in Macau and in the same breath admit that I have saved a huge bit by staying at the Atlas, a hostel in Hong Kong on my last day there. The key is planning right. At the Parisian I enjoyed the fancy buffet, some time to myself by the poolside , those fine dining meals, gambled at the 360° Casino and even explored the Venitian property (as the properties are linked internally) with the gandola rides and strutted in and out of those high end luxury shopping stores. The Eiffel Tower within the Parisian property, especially in the evening was an ethereal experience too, completely worth it’s hype. The reasons behind picking a hostel on the other hand was, one to know what it was like to live in a hostel, and two, because as per our itinerary we were to be out & about the entire day and all we needed was a decent place to wash up & rest when we returned late at night. It worked out perfectly. Of course, we checked reviews about safety, service, the staff etc and then finalized on it.

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The Parisian- Macau

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Breakfast like a king

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Cuz tea, why noy?

To me, travelling is much more than a relaxed holiday. It’s more learning & discovering, whether it is about different cultures, different types of societies, food, fashion, languages or anything else. Honestly none of my trips Abroad have ever been with the intention of going easy or relaxing. The only relaxation time is either at the spa or when it’s bed time!

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Beer spa at @SenseofTouch Hongkong!

Just thinking about it, is getting me pepped up. I should be making a list of destinations I would like to visit soon. Hoping it all comes together even sooner! I think I deserve a trip to say the least.
If you love travel , or you’re planning a trip let me know how do you go about it? What kind of a traveler are you? I want to know all about it!

Lots of Love,

The Silent Hummer
Franchua D’Souza

Doing that thing you do

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Hi all,

Hope you’re enjoying this beautiful Christmas season. The year has almost wrapped up & honestly I couldn’t be more thankful for that. I think I’m otherwise a kind person, so when I say 2018 has beaten the shit out of me, you should believe.

Anyway now that I’m glad it’s coming to an end, to keep some distracting thoughts away I started thinking about plans for the coming year. Not resolutions per se, but more like a bucket list. In the past I’ve attempted making a list of things I’d like to accomplish but I’ve somehow put it away after drafting 2-3 points. Maybe I should’ve tried after chugging some chilled beer, well it’s never too late!

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Bucket list for 2019:

– Visit Pondicherry in South India. I’m keen on exploring those French colonies on bicycles and seeing the beautiful Auroville ashram. I will be picky about whom I go with here because honestly I wanted to do a solo trip.

– Take up a new class. There are a couple of things that seem interesting but I need to figure how feasible it really is with my work timings. I’m thinking of contemporary dance, learning a musical instrument, or even attending a bar tending workshop.

– 2018 has damaged my hair (and me) and by the looks of it, it’s beyond repair. I’m thinking maybe Hair spa? Need to do a little research on how this works.

– Here’s a fact that I often use to get away from the marriage topic. I cannot cook. And that’s 100% true, I don’t know how to prepare a single dish from scratch, let alone an entire meal.  No plans of marriage for me, but it certainly wouldn’t harm to learn some easy to cook recipes.

– Commit to a charitable cause. It’s been on my mind for sometime now. I want to spend my time with the old & the lonely, with under privileged kids, with cancer patients. And I do not want it to be a Birthday or a Lenten or a Christmas deed. I want to definitely commit to this. If possible, I request you to add this to your bucket list too.

– A tattoo. For close to 2 years, I’ve pushed the thought away. But maybe the tattoo was destined to happen in 2019. Hint : It will have a musical sign for sure.

– Take mom on a holiday, whether domestic or International doesn’t matter, but a nice pampered vacay is what we need. Look at us from the recent Goa trip!

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– Post a lot more here on the blog

– Maybe get a life!

I’ve tried to keep my bucket list as basic and achievable as possible.  I really don’t care about things like Bungee jumping off a cliff or sky diving or scuba diving or seeing the Eiffel Tower. Maybe at some point I did, but with time these things have changed.

Let me know what do you look forward to in 2019.

Anyway wishing you all a fantastic end to 2018. Be happy, be safe. Travel a lot, read and blog a lot more!

Lots of love,

The Silent Hummer

Franchua D’Souza

Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas

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Hello all,

This is not really a blog post, but just a quick way of reaching out to everyone possible and wishing you and your loved ones – Merry Christmas!

Christmas is so much more meaningful when you are with near & dear ones, when you spend it with people who are a huge part of your life. My personal request to all of you would be that this Christmas, pick up the phone and speak to that one person who at some point in your life meant a lot to you but for whatever reason (or simply with time ) you both have lost touch. Even if one person is reminded / inspired by this post, and is able to restore a relationship, I’d be delighted!

We live in a tough world any which way, let’s add some Christmas cheer to it! The world really needs it.

Stay happy everyone.

Lots of love,

The Silent Hummer,

Franchua D’Souza

 

Seasons in the Sun

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When we look at social media today, everything is about the happy and perfect life, isn’t it? About Holidays, weddings and babies. We aren’t used to people actually displaying their real life, their real struggles. Today I’ve decided to share some real thoughts about my own life. #NotAshamed

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Have you ever felt like you don’t belong to your generation? Like you take things very seriously as compared to others? Like everything around you is moving at lightning speed? Like The music we have today is rubbish? Like Relationships & equations today are really a joke? I always felt I was a little too mature amongst my peers. I don’t have a dramatic story and it has got nothing to do with a rough and difficult childhood, or some traumatic event I went through or anything like that. That’s just the way I’ve been. As a child I didn’t enjoy watching cartoons, I still don’t know anything else besides the names of Tom and Jerry, Scooby doo, Aladdin, Jasmine, Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck. Don’t even get me started on Harry Potter/ Twilight or the recent Game of Thrones. I never gave into or for that matter even found double meaning jokes funny where people around me laughed their butts off. I always calculated my thoughts, always kept my head on my shoulders and thought I had everything planned out for myself. In fact I even planned at what age I would let myself actually consider a relationship. I had decided that at the age of 28 I’d settle down. I didn’t enjoy the clubbing scene as much as people my age did, honestly I still don’t. I enjoyed English classic music thanks to my parents who introduced me to that genre of music since I was a kid, I enjoyed going to dances where people waltzed and jived the evening away. When it came to romance, I actually enjoyed the attention while being wooed, while being flirted with, rather than putting myself out there directly. Not that I expect it, but even today I find chivalry very impressive.

I wonder if there are people out there who feel the same way. I may have joked about it many a times about how I actually belong to the generation before mine, but I honestly feel like that. I don’t give into latest trends easily whether it was the blackberry phase or now the Iphone phase, Hotstar or Netflix. I know as I’m writing this that I may be judged and will probably be considered the mood dampener among the young and lively ones. Boring too maybe. Not that it makes a difference anyway.

The reason I’m putting this down is not because I want to show or prove something. Not like these are my life’s success theories that have made life special. Today I’m a 28 year old woman, who’s life is far from sorted. Even far from married. Thanks to the personality I have, I struggle a lot more with this fast paced world. Words affect me. Things that people say casually, get imprinted on my mind & memory for the longest time. I easily believe when someone looks me in the eye and says something. I do go on face value. I do not go about befriending every second person for any benefit, but once I do have a connection or a bond with a person, I value it for life! This brings me to discussing things I absolutely fail to understand, like “How do people suddenly cut off from those that mattered to them all along?” , “How do people let go off all the good times, memories, all the love and friendship they shared, and actually treat the other as though dead or as a stranger in life?”, Even lyrics like “Now you’re just somebody that I used to know” astounds me! I can’t seem to fathom how it’s done like a breeze for some.

This week 2-3 people at work pointed out to me that I always have a smile each time they see me, like everything is great. It’s ironic actually as this week has been one of my worst weeks in the recent past. Overall the last one year has been the most exhausting year for me emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. It’s taught me a lot about myself, about how stubborn I am, how stupid I am, about my strengths & weaknesses, about how much I can and will do for my people if I put my heart to it etc. I know one should never say never but I’ve have actually sworn against a number of things for my own good too, even if that rips my heart apart.

This particular post as well as some of my recent insta posts may appear as though I’m depressed. I’m unsure about “depressed” but it’s true that I’ve been in a very pensive mood for the longest time I’ve known. I’ll try to come up with more vibrant and happy posts next, I assure you. Be patient. If you’re still reading this, I really wish you well. Life is no cake walk I know, I’m certain you have own challenges too, I just hope you choose your battles well and fight them even better.

Until next time,

Yours truly,

The Silent Hummer
Franchua D’Souza

Mama Mia, how can I resist you!

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On this lazy Sunday afternoon as I lay in bed with my feet stretched out to the cupboard next to it, I’m thinking mozarella cheese. I’m thinking Burrata cheese. I’m thinking home made pasta. I’m thinking a glass of fancy red wine. I’m thinking some great music. I’m thinking great company. I’m thinking of a great Italian pasta bar in Hong Kong. Oh wait, I’m transported to Pici (Pronounced as Peachy)!

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If you’ve read my previous travel posts, you will know that I’m not a big fan of South East Asian cuisines. Considering it is an acquired taste, I think my palette is opening up to it, but I can’t say I’m fond of it yet. Thankfully Hongkong has so many options available, I survived it without missing Indian food.

Here’s another thing about me. I’ve never gone trekking in my life, well at least not until Hong Kong happened. On one of my days there, the inner athletic in me decided to go trekking on the Dragon’s back. A legit 4 hour morning trek with a few stops to admire and click the scenic views.

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It was certainly a personal accomplishment and what better way than to celebrate it with some great Italian food!

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If you’re in Hong Kong, you’re probably well acquainted with Pici. Initially I called it everything from PC to Picki to pishi. On being seated, I finally gathered some courage and decided to get it out of the way with and asked what’s the place actually called! Peachy it is!

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It is hard to miss Pici. If you’ve not visited it yet, I strongly suggest you give it a shot. It’s definitely worth the hype. The food for one is amaaaaaaazing, I mean I’m actually drooling thinking about that burrata cheese and gnocchi Al pesto pasta right now! I’m not a Tiramisu or Panna Cotta fan generally, but boy! I really did enjoy my dessert too here. Did I mention they’ve got some interesting cocktails?

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Pici is well located and that’s another plus point. The place has got such a relaxing feel and vibe to it, the music and decor certainly add to it. The staff is warm and welcoming, happy to give their recommendations when needed. And the fact that you get to see your pasta being made in front of you is just so cool.

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This restaurant is all about a great experience. Having been able to have super fun conversations with strangers, I won’t be shy in saying this restaurant can actually be an ideal place for a first date/tenth date.. Whatever! I mean this is where I got to know about the ‘Brad Pitt returning to Jennifer Aniston’ rumour. Don’t forget to make a reservation in advance, I tell you! You can thank me later.

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I hope you enjoyed reading this post. If you’re visiting Hong Kong, you should definitely put this on your list of restaurants that need to be visited.

I’ll keep sharing tidbits from my Hong Kong trip here on the blog. Do let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

 

Lots of love,

The Silent Hummer

Franchua D’Souza

It’s a small world

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When one hears of Hong Kong, it’s imperative that Disneyland comes to mind. At least that was the case with me. I couldn’t wait to see Mickey & Minnie Mouse and try all those exciting rides.

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Hongkong Disneyland is no less than any fantasy world. It transports you to a completely different world where kids and adults are left amused. Disney characters that we’ve all watched as kids come to life and how! I personally enjoyed watching the parade (even though I could only tell a few characters by their names).

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What’s the point going to Disneyland and not trying those wonderful rides, right? I can boast of doing most of them, and if given a chance would love to experience them again. From the many rides I attempted, the “Big Grizzly Mountain Mining Co” was my favorite. The others that should definitely be tried are The Iron man ride, Star wars ride, Toy Story & It’s a small world.

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The day I visited HongKong Disneyland, the weather was really hot and humid. Also rushing from one ride to the other to avoid the queue lines didn’t quite help. Here I must mention how well the property is planned, it’s got restaurants and refreshment stalls strategically located. Also, I was so thankful that the staff handed me a map of the place in English!I couldn’t resist from getting some Disneyland merchandise and picked up that cute Mickey hairband you see in my picture. Known for being the practical person that I am, I had to keep convincing myself that I would re-use the hairband somewhere, maybe at a theme party and it wasn’t just an impulsive purchase. In fact I also got some cute souvenirs to gift friends back home.

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Thank you Disneyland for this wonderful experience!I truly had a great time and it has definitely made my HongKong trip so much more special.

 

Lots of love,

The Silent Hummer
Franchua D’Souza