Breaths

They will see us waving from such great heights
‘Come down now,’ they’ll say.
But everything looks perfect from far away
‘Come down now.’ But we’ll stay.

             – The Postal Service 

We’re up in the clouds, right at the edge, feet dangling through the wisps of moisture. I can see the city several stratospheres below, hurrying on. Pedestrians swarm sidewalks, cars hum impatiently at lights, skyscrapers claw endlessly for us.

“Do we ever have to go back down?” I ask lazily. Overhead, a spattering of stars lays scattered, holes punched in a velvet curtain.

“No,” he says. He’s lying on his back, tracing constellations in the night sky. “But we will.”

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What Stays

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I’ve been playing shadow games with transience lately.

I never see it directly; rather, it disguises itself in snippets. It’s too new a figure in my life for me to recognize it by its own face. It propels itself on the fast feet of happiness or slips by under cloak of sadness.

Monastery Madness

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While in Pai, a friend and I decided we should do some meditating. Maybe I’ve just been hanging out with more hippies in the past year, but during my time in Melbourne, I heard about Vipassana meditation a lot. Friends tossed around the words ‘life-changing’ and ‘fulfilling’ and it seemed to mesh with the reading I was doing on being present.

‘It’ll be fun,’ my friend Sarah said.

I was still on the fence, but the fact that we were staying at Spicypai Hostel in a 26-bed dorm was good encouragement to leave town.

Yi Peng Lantern Festival

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Last May, I sat at a café in California covered head to toe in desert dust. It was another couple of hours’ drive to the campground where we’d spend the night, and I took advantage of the coffee break to check my email.

The first message I opened was an article pending my edits, but before I had a chance to read it, I flicked open its attached pictures. I was struck by the first photo I saw – hundreds of lanterns spilling into the night sky, stars dotting the horizon. Monks in orange walking amongst candles. Light lasting silently, steadily into the night.

Public Broadcasting Showdown: BBC vs CBC

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As a Canadian, I have a shameful confession to make. When given the option between the BBC and the CBC, I pick the BBC nine times out of ten. With the CBC’s tagline proudly announcing “Canada lives here,” I feel like I’m turning my back on my country by choosing the UK’s public broadcaster over my own. And yet, preference wins out over patriotism, meaning I find myself at www.bbc.co.uk once again.