flows like a river


My days have been really unpredictable lately. I’ve been either waking up at 5am or going to bed at 7 am in the morning. In any particular moment, I do what I think it’s the best. I work when I can and go to sleep when I need to. In between I’d fit as much fun things such as working out, friends, and novelets as possible. All of this is paying back in tremendous amount of freedom, happiness, and only at the cost of a huge pile of laundry that’s not getting put away.

I left school at 6am one day after having worked all night. I would’ve stayed longer if my car wasn’t going to get ticketed parking on campus. I drove down to Peet’s coffee in Fremont for my current addiction, soy chai. Ever since I got my panoramic sunroof in my car, I could get lots of sun during the day, but no light at night without a dome light. I couldn’t find my wallet in the car by the time I got to Peet’s. So I drove home disappointed. Just when I was indecisive whether I should go to sleep or get back to school, this amazing sunrise drew me out of my slumber.

I had to act quickly, because within the amount of time it took for me to decide to grab my camera to actually finishing setting up the tripod, the shades of the clouds have already changed significantly. The glory of the sunrise was indescribable. To the east of my balcony, the cascades were clearly in the shadows. The sky and clouds at where the sun was coming out right underneath the I-5 bridge was sheets of gold. The rest of the sky over head or to the west were draped in bold reds and deep blues. It was nature’s drama in action, for a very brief 15 minutes if not less.

IMG_3773 IMG_3788

I quickly snapped some panoramic shots from UW in the east to Downtown Seattle in the south west. What I didn’t realize was that I should have first tested the aperture of the whole scene, and pick a good medium point that would satisfy the really bright sunrise, but wouldn’t underexpose the darker side of the sky. So I kept having to readjust the setting as I took the pictures for the panoramic. This was problematic as you’d expect when I stitched them together. Some of the shots were brighter than the neighboring shots and it was hard to blend them in. This was a great to know for taking panoramic photos.

Recently, I asked myself the question what it’s like to be a guy in dating. Then I realized that it’s pretty darn hard. Not only do you have to find potentially good girl, then you’d have to go through a sequence of strategies to chase her down, namely the good ones actually have to really know how women think. That’s a tough job. I thought about what it’s like to be a girl in dating. I realized that it’s actually really simple, you just got to be a girl and treat the guy as a decent human being. At least that’s from my perspective. In the past, I’ve always treated dating like an awkward clown. I never quite know whether I should play along like a clown or just laugh at its sad jokes. Something came to light.. ahh.. right, the sunrise… … better, something better came to light recently. I just got to be myself!

Denise gave me this quote from Maya Angelou a long time ago but like the right guy that showed up at the wrong time, it went by the way side. It resurfaced again because she sent it to me again, God’s messenger.

A woman in harmony with her spirit
is like a river flowing.

She goes
where she will
without pretense

And arrives at her destinations
prepared to be herself
and only herself.

But this time, it stuck with me, but not until I have figured it out on my own how to do it and realized that was exactly what the message was saying. I slept when I felt tired. I ate when I was hungry. I worked when I felt like working. I wrote novelets when inspired. Everything has become so easy even when it should be stressful like me trying to meet my deadlines. All of my insecurities have, if I may quote the Kite Runner out of context, “packed up its bags and quietly left the room.” It’s strange that we have evolved to be so intelligent, to think and possess the ability/power to make things happen or manipulate the situations. But the right thing to do is always the the simplest, easiest and most natural. My friend Cherie said, “There is already so much that goes well without our interference. Like our heart continues beating and our body keeps regenerating itself…. So go for it.” Perhaps this is why Pierre always says, there are no rules in dating. In other words, man made dating rules are unnatural.

Dating is awkward and I always stumbled because I always offended this natural law by asking too many questions and thinking too much: what’s he thinking about, how does he feel about me, whatever. I forgot to trust myself that I can assess and tell what’s right or wrong for me. When I felt something was off, irrational in my mind, it was OK to follow what feels right for me. Now I can trust, following my own natural instincts and honoring those deepest desires and wishes, I will naturally show up at my destinations, as my authentic self.


And you might ask just how did I start from talking about a beautiful sunrise to talking about dating, I just flowed like a river.

This entry was posted by Maya.

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