Welcome to the real worldAugust 08, 2016

The day went by, and I hardly noticed it. Night time would be for the adventurous souls who were looking for fun. On this particular evening, it wasn't raining at all. But I wasn't in a mood to go out. My iPad was my companion for the night while browsing the headline news. It reminded me that I was far away from home, and I couldn't even imagine my (hostel) room as my own. It was hard to tell if it was a good thing. I haven't talked to my folks for a week, and I would plan to let them know about my whereabouts this weekend.

The best swimming holidays around the world won't include Ha Long Bay, but I had an unusual trip the other day. The emerald-green water didn't look inviting while the limestone cliffs didn't excite me at all. My guide was rather upbeat, as he compared some of the stones to his past lovers. He seemed to be imagining too much, which prompted me to wonder if he studied literature. And tourism could be his passion. It may be a part-time occupation as well.

The Top 10 views in Rio de Janeiro. I was fortunate to witness the Tam Cốc-Bích Động before harvest time. The yellow rice fields hugged the (narrow) river. It was like a yellow sea from the distance, which would give a different look to the limestone cliffs. I first saw this breathtaking panorama in "Indochine", Régis Wargnier's soap opera about a wealthy plantation owner who witnessed the gradual transformation of Vietnam from a colonized land to an independent nation. My coursemate was green with envy when I posted my shot of this wonderful scenery on social media. Perhaps I was meant to see it. Nothing would beat the real thing. There would be a possibility that I could use it for a short story.

And it's time for the other headlines

How to combat the stress of doing a master's? Fortunately, I haven't reached that stage. I had too much stress during my few years at the university, as an English major couldn't afford to lie on a bed of roses. Not that I would feel sorry for myself, as I dealt with the pressure (of the coursework) well enough. When gap year came, I didn't have second thoughts on going away. I heard about the opportunity of studying old manuscripts, but it won't be good enough to pursue a master's. I could change my mind after idling at this unspoiled coastline. I rather relish my Robinson Crusoe moment.

I wish I could tell you how brilliant your children are. My mother told me about it, which made her beamed with pride. I was eleven years of age when it first happened when a neighbor noticed my photographic memory. However, there was more to the coursework. If I didn't make the necessary adjustments, then I would end up as a fluke.

Stan Wawrinka withdrew from the Olympics. It didn't surprise me at all. He may have a valid reason, but it was hard to tell if he would be a medal contender. I was afraid that Stan's best days were behind him. I might be wrong, though. I wasn't a huge tennis fan until my housemates talked about it.

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