A little gift for myself

Yesterday I went down the shopping street near my place. The simple pleasure of a Saturday morning in the gloriously pleasant weather of the summer in Europe. I saw this cozy local bookstore next to a few cute coffee houses. I walked in, for an emotional treat. As I passed through the door, I briefly…

My story of turning 30 and eradicating my financial illiteracy

About more than half a year ago, when my 30th birthday was approaching, if you had asked me whether I was excited about it, I would have screamed out a resounding NOOO. Quite the opposite, I was freaking out about it, suddenly seeing only things that I had not done (but thought I should have had). All the growth, valuable relationships, wonderful experiences living on 3 continents, and all those accomplishments I had been working so hard to achieve somehow diminished and vanished into invisibility in front of my blinded eyes.

On the balcony, in the sun

How excited I am that the summer has officially come back. I don’t countdown to Christmas but I have been looking forward to June the 21st for some time now. And finally, here today comes the first day of summer in the northern hemisphere. Hooray!!

The gentle, caressing, honey-sweet sunlight of the spring not only filled me up with excitement but also inspired my first home improvement project here in Amsterdam, my balcony renovation project. And now to mark the first day of summer, I’m gonna introduce the space in my apartment which I am the proudest of, my balcony. Yay

The ice skating with a mock-up draw bridge and a boat

An ice-skating duckling’s life

I put on the ice skating shoes and walked to the ice rink. “The first few minutes will be hard but after that, it’s gonna be okay,” I thought to myself as I was getting closer to the gate, recalling how it always took me some moments at first in the previous times I went…

The unsent letter

Back in university, there was a time when I composed quite a few poems. Actually, it was more like poems coming to me than me writing them because the words came and fit one another so naturally… It was in the first hours of my last day in Saigon before I come back someday I don’t know when. Not long after I woke up, when I was sitting at my table working on an unfinished report, I picked up my pen and a piece of paper. And the words started to materialize themselves, in the light of a breaking dawn.

Even a Psychology Professor at Wharton gets the MBTI wrong!

The other day, I came across this article on psychologytoday.com by Adam Grant, Ph.D., a professor at Wharton and the author of Give and Take. Adam argues that the MBTI is a fad that deserves no real merit as it is an unreliable, inaccurate, and uncomprehensive instrument. It’s nothing new that the MBTI receives criticism despite being one of the most (probably the most) widely practiced personality archetypes. And I’m not surprised when critique comes from a highly respected and globally influential psychologist like Adam. But it takes me by surprise how loose and superficial his argument is – frankly, I find most of it invalid. Here’s how.

The wedding vow

Great I have found something that would save me the headache of writing a wedding vow (if someday I turn out to decide that getting married is a good idea). I would just have to play this song for my part lol.
I can’t promise to be someone for a man to protect. Actually, I will promise to be “his remedy”.
Come whatever, I’ll be the shelter that won’t let the rain come through. […] I promise you will see that I will be your remedy.

A springtime story of my purest Hanoi

A piece written on airplane in tonight’s flight from Hanoi to Saigon The spring’s meetup. With this special person who is the first and one of the only two people who feel like Hanoi to me. The purest and most beautiful essence of it. * Because of my job, I used to travel to Hanoi…

A conversation about confidence versus cockiness

The other day, I had this unexpected conversation on Facebook with a friend I made back in Colorado State University. I’m thankful for his sharp and informed response and argument that provoked me to think more deeply about what I meant, which, by consequence, helped me hone my vision of who I want to be. I have a feeling that sometime from now looking back, I’d likely find it to be one of such change-inducing moments. So I document it here for my own reference. And also, I hope it means something to you.