Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Conquering alone-ness

31 August 2004
8:15 p.m.

I set out today to conquer one of my greatest fears, to go shopping alone. After lunch, I only brought my wallet and bus pass to shop for a book at Manor, the nearest mall.

In trying to find the book I was looking for, I realized that 10,000 steps would not make appear what wasn’t there. I had to call for back-up. Consulting a trusted friend on which book to buy, which volume to choose and where to buy it was a relief. I had found myself at Payot Librairie on rue du Mont Blanc. (“Call a friend” on “Who wants to be a Millionaire?”)

When I got there, I was directed to go downstairs after asking in what broken French I knew how to say. When I got downstairs, I asked again and the lady politely in French, told me to go upstairs because the book was there. I tried to scan the volumes of books shelved on the walls to find what I was looking for. Finally, I found it. Then, hit another dilemma…It only came in French. I asked another attendant (again) where I could find an English version. I found myself redirected to the basement (again). This had become a shopping nightmare. I called a friend for a “lifeline please.” My friend couldn’t come for another 30 minutes. My apprehension became a reality. I was alone at Payot reading and couldn’t sit still as was not used to shopping alone.

Meanwhile, what I set out to do seemed to be backfiring. And while this was playing in the foreground, the backdrop was even more dramatic. Flash-backing to lunch, one of my brothers asked for my mom to leave the keys. My mom left her keys. My brother forgets to take the keys and leaves the house. I, not seeing it as a problem, left with my key.

One hour later, my brother calls me and asks for the key. I was at Payot then. He picks up my key and another hour later, he’s still not home and I was in the garden not answering nature’s call. The keys came via delivery (c/o driver) and I got into the house. I saw another set of keys (my other brothers who was with my other brother) but not the third one. So, I thought, they had another key. I not worrying again left the house with my key.

Then, an hour later, my mom calls me up asking for the key. I said my brother had it why doesn’t he come home to bring it. I was about 20 minutes away as opposed to his 10 minutes. Despite my anger, I had to go home since my brother said he didn’t have a key and I would be questioning his honesty. And we wouldn’t want that, do we?

A rage and a half later, I found myself on the street again, “key-less” and wandering around Pont D’Arve where the melancholic river grew a gray colored cover and where my friend and I were so close to the first time. She had to leave for another commitment and I walked the streets of Geneva.

Aching feet, hurt heart, and some 500 words later, I am here at Lake Geneva near Bel-Air, accompanied by swans at the lake shore.
I am still fuming with texts stained with profanities from my brother because he bore the wrath of my mother’s punishment of banned PC usage. The anger was waning but the hurt wasn’t.

And what I set out to do this afternoon – to shop along became a night of alone time.

It was more than conquering my fear of shopping. It is being independent of leaning on someone even during the greatest time of need.

That’s the lesson of conquering your fears…you come out stronger than you thought you could.

(This is a very sedate story. It has been edited for content.)

"The Truth is Out There"

30 August 2004
6:00 p.m.

Watching an episode of Smallville, Clark asks Lana, “Don’t you find (Byron) different?” Lana had taken fancy on the latest Luthor Corp. mishap that turned Jekyll-and-Hyde when exposed to the sun. Lana says, “If you really like someone, you have to accept every part of that person.” Clark retorts, “Maybe Byron keeps that part hidden so people will not be scared away (off).” Lana explains, “But that’s a risk you have to take. You’ll never know unless you show it. And you might have missed out on something amazing if you never try.”

We’ve heard or read these words in so many forms and phrases basically telling us, “Take the risk. See what life has to offer. Don’t be afraid. Tell the truth.”

Borrowing the X-Files “The Truth is Out There,” we have always over-rated what honesty and truth really mean.

We hide behind facades and look “happy” to be in the norm and to maintain the status quo.

But how long can one keep up this charade without taking a toll on one’s psyche? These repressions have only given more money to psychiatrists and psychologists.

What are we afraid of? A German book called “Mary” by Ella Kensington simplifies, “The root of man’s problem is the desire to be accepted and to not be alone.”

Are we so ashamed of ourselves that sometimes we put on a show so that people can like us and that we may “belong”?

In transition to finding real people who can accept us, we hang out with a mediocre crowd. A group of people we have nothing in common with but we bear because the thought of eating lunch alone is just too SAD.

We prize companionship but do we really know what it entails? Why do marriages only last 52 hours? Because the couple wanted to compromise their happiness at the thought of being happy in each other’s arms. This is not meant to generalize but to look at why people are so unhappy amidst the bustling crowd of “friends” and why the sarcastic grin is not so much as a mannerism as a silent scream of “What the hell am I doing here?”

We get ourselves into these situations because we want to be loved, accepted, wanted. But at what cost? (I am not questioning true happiness, I advocate it.)

To what extent can we compromise to be worthy of society’s approval? Aren’t there people who don’t judge? What are we ashamed of? Aren’t we part of society too? Can we look through a prism of non-judgment?

Isn’t it that each one carries a secret in their heart that they’d rather die than tell “friends.” So, what is a friend if truth cannot be spoken? I used to be scoffed at because of my brutal frankness and my hurtful bluntness. But I’ve also received many praises that if not for my fiery tongue they’d have gone astray. I still prize the truth. As much as it hurts…it will set you free. (Cliché? Try it!)

Monday, August 30, 2004

Cyber Celibacy

30 August 2004
9:32 a.m.

With increasing dependence and access to the Internet, we have found a certain comfort zone in the chat-rooms or instant messaging with friends around the world. For some, chatting is as natural as talking to someone tete-à-tete (face-to-face). But how important is it really?

For those that are miles and miles away, it is perhaps the cheapest and most effective way to communicate in real time. And with the advent of web cameras (webcams), the experience can be as “real” as possible.

But for those that are living in the same city, won’t talking face-to-face be a better solution? I am a self-confessed computer addict, much less a cyber-addict. I have to have my piece of internet time everyday. I spend my time chatting away from 11 p.m. to the wee hours of the morning and my chat-mate lives in the same city.

It has become such a habit to come home to the PC, to see my chat-mate logged on and to be ready for another night of chatting away. Some topics are more interesting to talk about than others which make the conversation virtually timeless.

We have both found comfort in coming home and seeing each other online. It was a way to recount the day’s events, the day’s thoughts, and to discuss what will come for tomorrow’s day. But I go back to my question: Is chatting online still the best option for two people who live in the same city? There is still merit in the spoken word.

I had proposed to my chat-mate that we take a one-week sabbatical from chatting and resort to more conventional means of communications, i.e. speaking. I received a hesitant "but i'll miss the cyber U. just U!" This sabbatical is a form of cyber celibacy that can only heighten the excitement of really meeting people. It was also a way in what my chat-mate describes as “killing the cyber persona” that was created online.

The experiment is now on its third day and we have managed to see each other twice for that “celibate” period. There has been a conscious effort to stay in touch without the ethernet in between. I find it more refreshing to share a drink or to talk in the park or wherever. Of course, the silence is more pronounced during those meetings instead of the pauses in chatting; but they are part of reality. But just as it is a part of life, silence is part of a conversation.

For all those people out there, who have access to internet and have a chance to meet people, try the latter. It will be a welcomed changed. Being celibate in the cyber sense can bring out the “life” that was created online.

Saturday, August 28, 2004

Painting the Town Red!  Posted by Hello

Me, Nikki, Katie in Red, Patricia in White, Ashley at the back Posted by Hello

Christine, Nikki, and me at Arthur's Posted by Hello

Painting the town red....

Six women dressed to the nines, strut across the lakeside avenue to paint the town of Geneva red.

In the most serendipitous of occasions, Katie, Christine, Ashley, Nikki and I met this Friday for after-dinner cocktails. IT was as random as any meeting could be…but… Christine and I met one Sunday after church and we hit it off as friends. That meeting was followed by a lunch at L’Evidence, one of the poshiest restaurants in Geneva near Gare de Cornavin. And that was followed by last night’s semi-drinking spree.

After meeting Christine that Sunday, I met another friend on the bus, ever so coincidentally…Or not! Nikki was silently listening to her music and sitting on the Bus 5. As I got on with my mother, she was there and the traditional “beso-beso” commenced. We talked and to my surprise, she knew Christine. Now, how small could the world get? Apparently…smaller!

Recounting that and planning to tell Christine at our lunch of Nikki’s acquaintance with her, I forgot. Maybe it was meant to be like that so yesterday night’s meeting would have more impact when I saw in disbelief, Nikki my friend seated with Christine and Katie.

Katie, a native Kentucky girl, is Nikki's friend from Church and Christine’s friend from somewhere. Christine is also the friend of Nikki’s sister, Aisa. (Surprised?) Then, there’s Patricia, from Canada, who happens to be an au pair (the first one I’d ever met) who met Katie just two weeks ago (she’s only been that long in Geneva). Ashley, the amiable Kansas girl, is a missionary at the age of 21. She met Katie just last Monday, when she arrived.

The cocktails were a send off cum acquaintance for Christine and Katie heading back home to the States and acquaintance for those who already didn’t know each other.

We started drinking at Arthur’s, a beautiful café located at the banks of Lake Geneva, where you can get your drinks at half-price before 9 p.m. This was Katie’s idea. And it sure was a good one. We spent about two hours there listening to music and enjoying the ambience while the light automatically dimmed at precise moments for the ever-romantic couple. We got to know each other and we found out that we were six women of strength, power, and with a mission in life. There were funny moments of "Lost in Translation" calibre. Ashley managed to point to something on the menu that was what she thought was a good drink. Indeed it was. It was "Lait, chaud ou froid." Translated: MILK, HOT OR COLD. It was so amusing that when her drink came no one realized that she had pointed to Milk on the menu. She was too shy to ask for help and in the end she got a good drink! We all shared a martini in a pass the glass fashion.

The even number made it possible for people to talk with each other at any given time-a sort of rotation, if you can call it that.

Then, Katie, who’s always at the top of things, decided to take an inventory of how all of us were going to get home. This moved us out of Arthur’s into the Geneva streets en route to Gare de Cornavin. We took a little detour and took the Jet d’Eau’s majesty and captured it in our little digicams. There were amazing shots taken by Nikki, the photographer in the group. One of Katie standing with her mouth open and her head tilted just enough so that the Jet d’Eau seemed like it was spouting from her mouth.

After all that fun, we had to know what time and where Ashley will take a ride to go home to Versoix. That’s when I knew, these girls were kind. We all walked to Gare, some with higher heels than others. We found out the time and we were relieved that the Noctambus (KnightBus equivalent?) was there and that Ashley was not going to get stranded in the city center.

It was at Mr. Pickwick’s English Pub at Rue de Lausanne that we saw a Harry Potter look-alike singing in a live band. Bohemian Rhapsody pls…Hotel California before. It was enjoyed after a viewing of the Olympics in a huge TV screen, where it so happens, Katie has a friend on the Lithuanian Basketball Team! Now, how lucky is that? Small world? Getting smaller…

Christine and I had our cider beer and we talked in the open air. She doesn’t like constricted stuffy places. After an hour of that, we were off to send people home. It was almost midnight. Nope, no one turned into a Pumpkin but Ashley, Nikki, and Patricia had buses to ride. We said our goodbyes and the “nice meeting yous” at Gare. Christine, Katie, and I then went off to Cactus (a subterranean club under the restaurant of the same name) for some, well what we thought would be a night of dancing to Mexican music. Boy, were we wrong. It was a night of R&B and Hip-Hop tunes, including Usher’s “Yeah” and a disoriented DJ. Katie managed to get an admirer but the “power of three” was too powerful and perhaps too enclosed that no one could penetrate our dancing area. Three powerful girls indeed. The night was slowly moving into the next day and it was time for us too to go off in our separate ways.

Going out on the town in Geneva has answered a few of the questions I had in my mind. Where did the Genevoise go on a Friday night? Where was the Exodus headed? I got to see a part of that. And maybe, just maybe, the cold Swiss outlook I had on the town is slowly melting. Of course, I saw younger people but don’t they grow old too? I hope that someday that “underground” culture of fun, spontaneity and sheer happiness will infect the “aboveground” of Geneva.

Friday, August 27, 2004

“Murder, made in Switzerland”

26 August 2004
8:05 p.m.

“Murder, made in Switzerland”

This was a line I used to answer a friend in the Philippines who wanted a Swiss knife as a gift and I jokingly retorted, “You want to kill someone?” It was the one of the rarest times that Hazel and I actually chatted online. I thought I’d be funny to insert that little bit of humor into the conversation. We had been so incommunicado due to the distances of our houses. But what was text for? Right? I have no excuses for that.

Well, moving on…(lest we get derailed on our discovery of the Swiss knife.)

It is so funny how the Swiss people themselves don’t own Swiss knives themselves and maybe half the world own one.

I guess “Made in Switzerland” is such a catchy tag that it even elicits a silent “Wow” from the buyers of Swiss products. Little did they know that Switzerland, like Singapore, has no real natural resources to speak of. Everything is imported. But “Made in Switzerland” still stands for “efficiency, durability and quality” for some people. I’d like to agree with that since I am a proud owner of a Swiss knife (I think it’s made here).

One of the most common things I do when I travel is to shop. It’s natural for most of us to just go to the mall or a store and get something unique to that place, a souvenir perhaps. But what we are most fond of when traveling abroad is the inexpensive clothes found at the duty free shops or the nearest mall.

The most shocking purchase I ever made was in the U.S. I was buying a nice green sleeveless blouse. I thought it looked marvelous. It was actually. Then…I looked at the “made in” tag and the last word was “Philippines.” I was only 13 then and didn’t really grasp the concept of imports and exports. I was shocked that the Philippines could make such good products and it was being exported, and I was buying it. Let me borrow Alanis’ “Isn’t it ironic?” It was indeed. Raw materials cost much less in the Philippines. Labor is also cheap, which makes it one of the biggest targets of outsourced labor in the world. But the irony comes in the export and that Filipinos have to buy them at a higher price than their production cost. Hmm…Anti-capitalist sentiment? Perhaps.

One thing I also learned is that the Philippines makes really good products, from food to clothes, to handicrafts, you name it! And you can always buy the latest in trend fashion at Barclays (read Baclaran) and House of Debby’s (read Divisoria). Interesting fact: we invented the Nata de Coco product that Japan has a patent for. Japan doesn’t even have coconuts.

But even if we can boast of these goods, how come the “made in the Philippines” is not of the same world-renown as the “made in Switzerland”? Is it packaging? Or is it the discriminatory view that maybe more developed countries can produce better stuff? Perhaps…But isn’t it all “made in China”?

Most denizens of the developing countries have colonial mentalities ingrained in the fiber of their being. I read an article in Time (I think) on how a Japanese journalist got so fed up with the “foreigner’s take” on Japan that he wrote a thought-piece on why Japan should talk about itself by itself and not be so dependent on the Western perception of their island-country. He asked very relevant questions as to why their culture prizes the thought of Westerners when they themselves are a developed country and they were once an imperial power too.

So many years of imperialism, colonization, and other forms of domination has eschewed our views on what is “good, quality and efficient.” If it weren’t for the likes of Malaysia’s Mahathir Mohammad, Malaysia would be another Philippines.

And perhaps, if we can’t break the cycle of colonialism, let’s order a quality murder, a murder made in Switzerland.

Monday, August 23, 2004

lake geneva by night, jet d'eau in the background Posted by Hello

Sunday, August 22, 2004

my partner in crime Posted by Hello

Friday, August 20, 2004

making peace with my enemy, math at its crudest

In an instance where I’m inclined to shut the door, my foot was invariably holding the door open. I’m talking about the language of math actually making it into my ears and reaching my brain. I had hated the thought of taking any more math courses after my dismal performance in high school math where I had to deal with tangents and cosines of a circle (trigonometry). It’s a whole different language and like the nature of any language you must have sufficient pre-disposition to learn it and to speak it.

I went to the WTO today to learn some database applications from a statistician. My foot was trying its hardest to hold the door open to let in the information she was giving me. I had to contend with both technical trade terms and of course my “favorite” – numbers.

She pointed to certain information which I would be dealing with in my line of work at the mission and what is required of me from the office. Usually, when I hear numbers a switch in my head turns off all possible comprehension but today, surprisingly, I was more receptive than I thought I’d be. Firstly, I was a bit familiar with MS Excel and MS Access language so it wasn’t a “re-invent the wheel” type of learning. There was a compounding of knowledge but it just took ever so slowly for the numbers to build up to a tower.

I usually shy away from numbers but seeing that this training is important in my line of work, I have to make friends with an enemy that has been so kind to me but I just don’t have the patience to forgive. Numbers and numbers…it would be easier to look at them and by some magic transformation I could understand them. Unfortunately, I am too old a dog to re-learn and love math. I have to just be content with what I know, and hopefully, it will grow on me like an unsightly wart. No harm, but ever so ugly masquerading as a beautiful ornament I’d wear.

privileges of life i lead; an old friend found

Living the life I lead has many privileges. Being the daughter of a diplomat, I have many privileges an average child may not have. I have the privilege to travel to all the posts my mom is assigned to. I have diplomatic immunity. I meet dignitaries and members of the foreign press corps. I have the best the world has to offer.

But the best part of being a diplomat’s daughter is the unlimited access to social functions with no less than U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan as guest of honor.

Today is the first year anniversary of the Canal Hotel bombing in Iraq. Some 22 people died in that blast including Sergio de Mello, UN Representative in Iraq. A peace concert was held at the Victoria Hall in Geneva to commemorate the many lives lost in the senseless bombing. Gilberto Gil, a Brasilian singer-composer, and Capuera dancers performed for peace and to honor the memories of the “heroes” of Canal who worked for peace.

Canal Hotel housed the defunct UN Office of the Humanitarian Coordinator in Iraq (UNOHCI) that oversaw the Oil-for-Food Programme to alleviate the suffering that the UN-imposed sanctions had wrought in Iraq. The Canal Hotel later became the UN headquarters after the US-led war in Iraq.

UNOHCI has a place in my heart as I was once part of it. I was an intern Information Officer with a Jordanian Information Officer, Adnan Jarrar. From him, I learned the craft of information dissemination. Right out of the university, I was welcomed into the UNOHCI information team. As part of my responsibilities, I prepared daily press clippings distributed to all diplomatic missions in Baghdad as well as international agencies present in Iraq. It was a good training indeed and something I will carry in my heart forever.

But perhaps with the perks of such an exposure and at the UN no less is meeting people – real people who make a difference in your life.

Today, not only did I see my former boss, Kofi Annan, but I saw a real friend, Saad Al-Asali (translated from Arabic – Happy, the Honey) who was one of the many survivors of the Canal Hotel bombing.

He came, with his pillars of support – his wife and three boys, to Geneva as part of the commemoration of the bombing. He is currently in London for medical treatment. In a month’s time, he’ll go back to Amman, Jordan to resume his duties as part of the UN there.

He was (and still is) a friend in UNOHCI and an important chain the Communications Division. I saw him everyday after office hours when we’d play ping pong at the mess. There, we exchanged philosophical discussions, linguistic theories in computers, and anything and everything about life – both in Iraq and abroad. We talked about our families and he thought me some Iraqi.

Of all the people I expected to see today, he was the least I thought I’d meet. I was content with the thought that Annan would be at the peace concert. In my excitement, I forgot to take a picture of him and his family. Usually, my eyes are the extensions of my camera lenses.

I wrote earlier in my entries that I always left friends behind because of my travel-ridden life. But there is nothing sweeter than to see an old friend and to be reminded how good life really is – to be among friends and loved ones.

Each person counts and each person makes a mark in your heart.

To Saad and the many friends I’ve left behind, thank you and I hope that someday our paths will cross again and we may reminisce in sweet nostalgia of days of yore.

Thursday, August 19, 2004

my day out with nikki

lake shore pensive Posted by Hello

lake geneva and me (taken by nikki) Posted by Hello

thief of thoughts

(written in anger while my thoughts are stolen)

Anger eats me up
As someone steals my idea
Cloaked behind an understanding ear,
Is a thief

Dissent was her armor
But it was a dreamweaver
Not bad dreams did it catch
But good thoughts to amass

Who is this thief
That robs in plain sight?
Is she not content
With her own thoughts?

Is she lacking originality
Or is lacking the limelight
That she claim my words
For her own?

What is behind this deception?
What do you get from glory that is not your own?
Do you laugh to yourself and pat yourself on the back
For a job you didn’t do?
(because no one else does?)

What good comes out of an idea
Peddled but not the right brand?

Some cheap imitation one holds on to
But see, look closely, it’s missing an “I”

Thief of thoughts
What do you do?
To stolen gifts
Not meant for you?

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

seasons a' change

(this is my second attempt at this as my previous masterpiece was swallowed up by the world wide web and all i have to show for it is a lousy “protocol error, please contact the blah and blah to see what might have caused this error.”)

when visiting many countries you have many experiences with the weather, no, not the occasional rainy or sunny forecast the weather lady speaks of in the morning news but the downpour of rain and its contrasting sunny days in tropical countries; the freezing sleet and the blizzard snow (the stuff mr. frosty is made of), the tempting spring breeze, the half-baked summers, and the beautiful autumns in temperate countries; or the searing heat that gives meaning to the phrase, “it’s like an oven in here” while in the middle east.

the seasons are changing in geneva now. the weather is taking the summer as greedily as it has given it. it was one month of continuous sunshine spotted with occasional rain. but now the rains slam against the window panes. i find myself wearing a cardigan to meet the nippier air and the window is slightly ajar and not widely open. autumn is on its way. catch: it’s only august and not even the end of the month yet. soon, september will pave the way for the snows of winter’s temper.

pockets full of rain

life is like the seasons (not an original of mine, wink*). when we come to a country we are like the weather stirring up the atmosphere. we are either cold or warm fronts depending on the people we meet or the circumstances we’re in. but what do we often choose?

we often choose to be a cold front because it’s safer and we have nothing to lose. we only run the risk of thawing but we can freeze right up again when the temperature is right. being a warm front (especially if you’re not naturally warm) takes a lot of work. you have to maintain a warm and comfortable situation or as the case may be, keep the people happy. by being warm you risk the exposure of nakedness, if not completely, we can’t hide the exposed skins of warmth. we are comfortable and vulnerable at the same time; unlike being a cold front where a sweater will do the job at covering your unsightly spots. When you’re warm, you cannot hide behind a glacier.

warm fronts are readily welcomed by other warm fronts or a cold front can give way to it. but meeting a cold front can only result in thunder and lightning. when the storm has passed only one will remain – cold or warm. but people being as predictable as the weather, the storms never come to pass. it is a continuous cycle of storms spotted with the occasional calms often carrying pockets full of rain. thus, the seasons of life.

Monday, August 16, 2004

time after time...

tick, tock, tick, tock...

we watch and hear the clock...

sometimes, time doesn't come fast enough. sometimes, it isn't enough. sometimes, it's running away from us.

the days have gone so fast here in geneva that i have to catch my breath sometimes when a long day tries to fit in the 24 hours allotted it. but sometimes, it's as slow as a turtle and you just can't wait for the day to be over.

i've been here for four months but i've just been working for two months. the first two months here passed without any life-altering events and it felt like time was at a stand still. but even if it was, it felt like time was running away. the days passed and i would wake up and i realize another week had passed by.

at work, i feel like i've been here forever. that's not necessarily a bad thing because i do want to stay on for a while. it's more difficult than i imagined to find a job here. so, i stay on...

some days in the office are like whirlwinds. you arrive in the morning and you run around doing errands and accomplishing daily tasks and when you look up at the computer clock, it's time to leave. some days are plagued with nothingness and boredom, you have to put toothpicks in your eye to stay awake.

but time, is it really on our side? people say, "there are two constants in life - time and change." the two are complementary but time is more forceful and evident.

are we slaves of time? or are we simply lacking time management skills? is it possible to really do everything in a given time period?

time after time, we ask questions like these.

i'm turning 24 in a few weeks and i ask questions like these: what have i done with my life? is it befitting a 24 year old? have i accomplished enough in that short life? soon, i'll be a quarter of a century old. then, would i have become wiser? does time really guarantee wisdom? are we like wines that get better with age? or are we just fruits that wait to rot?

do we spend more time thinking rather than doing? how should it be divided?

these are questions no one can really answer but ourselves. and let's just pray that we have time on our hands to do and to think. (not necessarily in that order)

Saturday, August 14, 2004


ria_parsram: how can you relax kung di ka natutulog???
paescalante: havent had "me-Time"
paescalante: sleep has become such a luxury
paescalante: and a burden at the same time
paescalante: i decided to turn in my REMs for a dose of sex and the city

this was a conversation i had with my good friend ria after a night of olympic watching and sex and the city. i don’t know where my life had gone when I can’t even enjoy the luxury of sleep. it’s 4:30 am in Geneva and there’s nothing so compelling to bring me to the comfort of a bed.

some would say, “you may think too much or you don’t give sleep a chance to tame your body.” but i say, “sleep is only needed if you really are ready to sleep.”

what is it that is so scary to enter in the darkness of night that makes sleeping such an ordeal to get through? is it the thought of a tomorrow that doesn’t actually quite fit your perfect day? My answer to that, “i don’t know.”

so many things in life are thought over in the minutes or it may seem like hours before getting that “good night’s sleep.” perhaps, the thought of a happy tomorrow is too much to bear for a neurotic person like me.

is it that we get too attached to the “worries” in life that when true happiness comes along we slap it right across the face, shaking ourselves at the same time saying, “wake up! it’s all a dream.”

but isn’t it that we spend so much time dreaming that when we actually find what we want and true happiness is knocking at our door, we’re asleep to answer it?

Hmmmm…i wonder, “can a good night sleep actually be a cure-all for all ills?” well, my mother thinks so. “stress” “stress” and even more “stress” is the cause of most ills for her. or so she tells me when i get a headache. and the follow up question is, "have you slept?"

am i too serious and do I just prefer to languish away typing my thoughts into this box? again, the safe answer is “i don’t know.”

one thing i'm sure of though. i didn't get a good night's sleep. but hopefully, i'll get a good day one.

Monday, August 09, 2004

day seven of the fete de geneve, 4 aug 2004

GENEVA-The pouring rain did not dampen the spirits of the giddy audience awaiting the performance of Eight Killers, a European band inspired by the movie Blues Brother. With over two hundred people huddled around the Ella Fitzegerald Stage near Lake Geneva, the rain turned the performance to an instant hit and one with a consistent standing ovation.

R&B pieces such as "Everybody needs somebody" and Elvis' "Hound Dog" were played with much gusto to the delight of the audience who danced despite their soaked clothes and unrelenting downpour.

This is my first time to attend the Fete de Geneve and I recommend viewing all the free concerts. The stages are all located near the lake. The Fete started on 29 July and marked by the Swiss National Day fireworks display on 1 August. The major fireworks display will be on 7 August where tons of fireworks will be lighted up and synchronised to music.

For all those in Europe or in Geneva, I hope you enjoy this one.