Monday, December 31, 2012

Merci 2012.. Bonjour 2013!

Last year, my year started with 7:30am mass at KasisisChildren’s Home in the outskirts of Lusaka, Zambia followed by a 2pm flight out from LUS to SFO. It was a long journey home that even included being proposed to at JNB by the passport security guy. Cute, those South Africans. Awkward but cute.

Here we are the last day of the year and I showed up to work with my team at 7am because it's PCF Monday- yay (not really)!

Family – my heart.

Friendships- Thank goodness for friendships. Make the effort to keep the connections; being too busy is hardly ever an excuse.

Love – Dear Love: You were really funny the first half of 2012. Seriously, now let's quit the jokes. What I have learned in the past few years is that old school is preferred over new school. Slow it down; there is no rush in getting to know a person or making any decisions. Often times than not, you end up crashing and burning in the fast and furious route. Having said that, there are no rules, be you. 

Work- If you don’t like the course you’re on (with anything), change it. I was fortunate enough to put that into action pretty quickly this year.

Travel – France, a country of depth, you were a pleasant surprise. Movie moments do happen… in Paris. Time will tell where 2013 will take me... Vietname/Cambodia/Burma, New Zealand, Brasil/Colombia, or ?

Life – The world had a way of breaking my heart time and time again this year but it just serves as a motivator to spread kindness even further and deeper than the day before. Like Gandhi said, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” I am not sure when I will be able to make it back to Kasisi but until then, I can spread it locally whether it’s buying that homeless person a hot cup of coffee, doing something a little extra for someone during the holidays or buying a garbage man that made fun of you for eating a soft serve cone on a cold rainy night. I promise you’ll get the BIGGEST smile in return.

Notables – Joe Quartini… Every day, I become less and less curious as to why the universe took you the way they did. I can only be grateful for the friendship that we had. Happy belated 32nd birthday… I can still see your smile and hear your laugh.

Here’s to taking 2013 by it’s horns! 

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Whoa.. December Is Going..!

Hello... where did I last leave off.. ah! yes! I promised to come back to give you my Kona thoughts. Obviously, it's taken me awhile, my apologies, life happens. So by now you all know that Pete Jacobs of Australia put on a perfect race to win the 2012 Kona Champs & Leanda Cave would not let Rinny run her down as anticipated to grab the win. While I am happy for Leanda, I am ecstatic for Pete! I met Pete in 2009 at the Kona KSwiss after party at Huggos. In the midst of all the alcohol and noise stood this soft spoken shy guy who I believe came in 7th that year. MG introduced him to our group and said to watch out for this guy as he was going to win one year. While that was great, I was more focused on what a nice guy he genuinely seemed to be, hence I am ecstatic that a nice and genuine guy took the Kona crown. It's unfortunate I didn't make the trip to Kona this year as I received emails about companies and sponsors wanting to purchase my race photos. So there you have it, my post Kona thoughts, a world that I've stepped away from but still can appreciate it.

December seem to have come and gone. For the first time in a few years, I am home for the entirety of the holidays and I must say, it feels very weird. I can't help but miss being with the kids at Kasisi Orphanage in Lusaka, Zambia. I landed there during Christmas Eve last year and while I was among 220 orphans, I ironically felt like the orphan that the kids were taking in. I miss them and my time there so much. Christmas has always been one of my favorite holidays, but it's also one of the tougher ones to get through. When I was 12 years old, my grandpops passed away at 8:45pm on Christmas Eve in our home. I watched him go through a long battle of lung cancer. I learned pretty early on that smoking is deadly, from taking my turn as the grand child to stay overnight at UCSF Long Hall part of the hospital with him to watching his health and senses decline, I remember all of it like it was yesterday and it's during the holidays that it's a bit more apparent.

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and the Happiest of Holidays with your families. May you have health in your bodies, peace on your minds, love in your hearts, warmth in your souls and gratitude in your lives. Until next time friends!