The week before school starts, we took this workation to Cancun – 30% work for client and 70% play for ourselves. It’s certainly one of the perks of running your own business (albeit a small one), to have the flexibility to balance work and play. I realize that company info-sessions are happening back to back at school during this week, including companies on my target list. And frankly it didn’t bother me much, I mean, I wouldn’t trade this sunrise with anything else.
Lesson for a Fresh Start
In fact, if there’s one key thing I learned after first year of MBA, it is being confident and decisive about what I want and don’t want. Quality over quantity always. There is no way that you can do everything and excel in everything in context of a large supply of talents. I’ve certainly learned to understand my personal areas of strength and invest in further developing those strengths, rather than trying to accomplish everything and be mediocre in all. Great leaders are not necessarily the best in everything, but are great at winning the loyalty of talented people. And with that fresh mentality, let’s enjoy some sunrise ;).
I’m pretty proud of this #nofilter phone photo. The remaining are credits to my talented photographer Eric.
I had meant to make my yearly traditional post about birthday reflections back in June. A bit bummed that I didn’t keep the tradition this year, but hopefully this will make it up a little.
This year’s lessons to self… 1. Do everything with passion, or don’t do it.
Yea it sounds a bit black and white or binary (and this surprised myself because I’m usually a non-absolute, grey sort of person). But frankly, the result for something done with passion and without will always be very obviously different. And if you had chose to spend your time on something, even if it is unwillingly, you had chose to do it for a reason so make that reason worthwhile and do it with passion. There’ll be new, unexpected things learned along the way, because you’d be more observant.
2. Observe, reflect, and still don’t judge
The conclusions you make about people or things are almost always biased and informed by pockets of intuition from previous life experiences. To stay objective and have a complete and accurate view, keep observing and don’t make judgements prematurely.
There, short and sweet.
I should have a lesson #3 about “don’t make excuses” but then I couldn’t give an excuse for my MIA status. Besides the new work which I’m loving, I have given my weekends helping the bf with photoshoots, and sales meetings. Besides the hours, I can’t really complain since I’m always in touch with my 2 favorite things: flowers and coffee. (Photo above is from Baka Gallery cafe, and bottom is from last weekend’s shoot).
It’s the last day in Paris and the natural feeling would be “7-days is nowhere near enough”. Don’t worry if you couldn’t make it to everything you planned, save some regret as excuse to come back! No schedule to catch, crowds to race, just leisure walks and local foods.
10am Montmartre walk
Besides the city view from Sacre Coeur, there are tons of hidden passages, colourful houses, and winding staircases. I suggest losing the map and wander aimlessly in the neighbouhood, have some bone marrow in a hole-in-the-wall restaurant, and do some damage to the wallet at Maje.
Last look of the Eiffle
And that concludes the Paris in 7 Days guide! It’s taken much longer than expected to complete (no excuse), but I couldn’t be happier for it and hope it brings some helpful ideas for planning your own!
As promised, we’re back to complete the castle-hopping adventures in the gorgeous Loire Valley. Make sure to see part I here for Chateau Chenonceau.
1:30pm: Château Cheverny
After a very homey and country style meal in the town, our driver took us to the second castle of the day, Chateau Cheverny. By this point, I was wondering where the tourists are, not that I miss them, it just almost seemed too good to be true to be standing in front of this magnificent structure in a small group of 6 with no swarms of people in sight… This castle was one of the smaller ones, and the owners still reside in the top floors. Not too shabby for a summer cottage at all…
3:00pm: Château Chambord
The sun finally decided to come out when we arrived at the final stop. The magnificent Chambord represents the epitome of French Renaissance architecture and is almost overwhelmingly spacious. The double spiral staircase by Leonardo Da Vinci was highlighted for its brilliantly secretive and elegant design. It’s claimed that four people could cross paths but never meet. Can confirm, as we tested it… It would make an excellent venue for those old school TV shows where slow motion shows the male and female leads passing by each other by some great coincidence yet never meets.
6:30pm: Back at Louvre
It’s almost a wrap, but Paris’s sunset happens around 9:30pm in June, so what choice do we have but to linger around Louvre and the river bank?! A tip: the courtyard of Louvre gets quite sparse with tourists in the evening as the museum closes, quite a fantastic opportunity to enjoy a (somewhat) quiet sunset.
Photos by EricCheng Photography and Delicate.affairs