30: Let Them Eat Cake!

My first foray with online journaling was possibly around 2003, Blogger/Blogspot era. I’ve attempted many a time to stick to a single platform. However, I kept wandering off to different domains, constantly reinventing, reframing, and evolving with my writing. My journey from LiveJournal, to Multiply, to Tumblr (or was it the other way around?), to here, WordPress, was studded with hesitancy and confidence, of many proud lightbulb moments and probably more disastrous identity crises.

I’ve always had a penchant for eating and traveling, and the Internet was my canvas to create written material surrounding those interests. While my university batch-mates dreamt of entering lucrative firms, I gushed over the idea of being a New York Times food reviewer, a Lonely Planet travel writer, writing for the now-defunct Lucky Peach, and leaving footprints around the world alongside Anthony Bourdain and Pico Iyer.

A grounding moment came in 2012, in the form of a food blog in the Philippines, solely entrusted to my care. My task was to creatively preen it and nurture it. I was lucky to have what I deemed back then was my dream job. Ah, to be paid to eat and travel and to write about my adventures! To have seen that website flourish and become what it is today will always be one of my proudest moments.

And then, in 2016, after three-and-a-half years, I packed my bags and moved to Singapore to start a life with a person I loved more than myself. It was difficult decision, but I’m glad I was aware that I needed a change if I wanted to reach my life’s bigger goals. I landed a stable job in advertising and a few writing projects here and there, but I didn’t feel quite right with myself. For three years, I kept swinging back and forth like a pendulum with my craft: I wrote and then stopped, and then wrote, and then felt jaded, and then made excuses, tried to write, felt discouraged, until I stopped writing altogether. I took some time off to ask myself tough questions. Writing is not easy; it takes a lot of time, energy, and effort. But you see, writing about the things that make me feel alive and being able to connect through these little experiences gives me a satisfaction and zest for life unlike anything else.

So this is probably why my new food-focused website, Wee Gourmand, was born. Perhaps it’s to rekindle a favorite pastime; to create a time capsule; to cultivate consistency; to curb unnecessary cravings; to challenge myself; to connect and so much more. The timing just felt right to bring a vision into reality…and to stick with it this time around.

Today, as I embark on another trip around the sun, I turn another decade wiser as well. One thing I know to be true is that my twenties have carried me through wild waves and winding roads to lead me to where I am at this moment. Today, I turn thirty, and I see the world with bigger, brighter eyes.

It’s time to light the candles, all thirty of them. It is, also, time to celebrate.

Now, bring out the cake!

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