My sister and I said goodbye today after a visit lasting almost three weeks. We explored Singapore, northern Vietnam, and northern Thailand before returning to Singapore for the weekend. (Blog posts in progress!) She left mere hours ago and I miss her.
Whenever I leave my family after any length of time at home, I experience a sense of restlessness, an inability to focus, loneliness, and a hint of anxiety. I recognize those emotions in that order every time. I felt the same way as soon as I hugged my sister goodbye. And I laughed inwardly because I hadn’t expected that at all.
We don’t talk much when we’re apart and we have a history of becoming very easily frustrated with each other. We’re stubborn in different ways, readers of usually different works from different schools of thought, and very different in our habits and preferences. But we’re both independent, open-minded, and flexible. We often have similar goals but very different approaches to achieving them.
So while we traveled, explored, and experienced three different places, I felt like I was doing the same with our relationship. I learned a lot about my sister, about who she is and who she is to me. I learned about myself, too, which is what happens whenever I begin to really see other people. We had some conversations that have made me think and question and others that have added new layers to already complicated ideas.
She’s always been my sister, but we made the choice a long time ago to be friends. The nature of all friendships and relationships change over time and ours is no exception.
For these reasons and more, I miss her already.
My sister has been here visiting since Tuesday and it has been so great having her here. It’s nice to share my life with her and show her the city that has become so important to me. It’s also a lot of fun to play tourist along with tour guide, indulgently doing all the things that are on the list for “someday”. For example, the Red Dot Design Museum was completely new to me and having my sister here was reason enough to visit the 50th storey skybridge at The Pinnacle@Duxton in Tanjong Pagar:
What has also been interesting is that my sister’s visit to Singapore has included visits to several religious buildings. Unlike when I travel, I don’t seek out religious buildings to admire here. I often pass by them and peek inside, but I don’t purposely find them like I do else. However, I was at Chijmes shortly before my sister’s arrival . . .
. . . and have since visited Masjid Abdul Gafoor, which my sister asked to see . . .
. . . and Thian Hock Keng, which we passed completely by accident while walking through Telok Ayer. . . .
There have been others, too, but these have been new for me. It’s nice to share something new with my sister, too. We don’t do that nearly often enough now that we live so far apart.
My sister’s visit has reminded me that no matter how much time you spend in a place, there’s always something else waiting to be seen. I love that about the world.
In a few days, we’re off to Hanoi, Sapa (new for me!), and Chiang Mai. Looking forward to going back and looking forward to going anew!
Just grab a handy notepad!
My sister lives in Toronto she was home visiting for a couple days. She’s way cooler than me and called last night to see if she could stop by. Of course, I said yes. To my surprise, she brought me a gift! Bri knows that I can occasionally be bad at making decisions, which is why this made me laugh.
- The notepad, waiting to be filled with dilemmas
I tried it out with a rather minor dilemma:
- To have coffee or not have coffee? That is the question….
Unfortunately, this MAKE A DECISION notepad is based on the concept of having gut feelings. As evinced, I did not:
- I don’t know. That’s why I’m using this notepad.
But making a pro-con list was helpful:
- Pros and cons of coffee
Even though the rational conclusion was to have coffee (or, I think it was . . . I’m not sure . . .) there was still a problem: My stomach hurt. I documented a plan for that, too.
- The Plan
Even though I now have this nifty decision-making notepad, I still like old simple standbys. For example:
Whether or not it works, this notepad will probably be enjoyable. Thanks, Bri!