I See Beautiful People (Venice, Italy)

 My friend started a blog a couple months before I did, and I noticed that the essence of one’s character is really present throughout one’s blog. That said, even though I am really passionate talking about heavy issues in how sometimes we find ourselves lacking happiness (and all this relates to developing confidence, chronic illness, racial/cultural/social issues, and basically everything), let’s not kid ourselves:  it can get overwhelming to worry about all the negatives in our lives and in the world.  So today’s post is just a moment to appreciate and absorb some good ol’ serotonin from all the visual glory that is the Venetian population.  Are all Venetian people’s names Daniel, because damn!  Hot damn!

I had been told before about Spanish men, but wowzas, two days in Venice and the number of hotties I saw was x 10 the amount in our American East Coast towns…  Theja asked me to document these men, and each time I sent her a photo, I was greeted with a loud and resounding cheer of “YAS BITCH YAS.”

Unfortunately, even due to my identity as shameless tourist aka creepy little Asian girl snapping shots of hot guys “discreetly,” I was not able to get great shots of every single guy, but don’t despair, here is a list of the ones I managed to gather:

  1. Water Taxi Driver from Afar – Right off the airport and hopping on a water taxi to our hotel, we spot a guy manning the boat in front of ours with great hair majestically flying in the wind, and I must describe my first impression of him as a Jersey guido with the tanned skin and the big biceps, but x100 better.  Not my type, but still cute.
  2. Gondola Man – good-looking in the older 40s, 50s year old hair slightly greying kind of way.  Very open smile and spirit and charismatic
  3. Waiter – pale, tall, fluffy brown hair and just cute.  The kind you can bring home to mama
  4. Hotel Shuttle Service Guy – very nice and polite guy, his clean cut scruff was actually flattering and I admired it
  5. Second Water Taxi Driver – with the leather jacket and bluest eyes, and who made me a believer of man buns.  For some reason, we forgot to tip him even though he was one of the nicer drivers… pretty sure as he drove away he stared in our direction with the saddest puppy eyes.   
  6. Water Subway Driver – Young blonde guy directing our water subway boat, glanced over and definitely caught my mom and I taking photos up close.  Sorry sir, couldn’t help ourselves
  7. Concierge Staff – that bone structure though.  Pretty boy, Hayden Christensen-type-when-he-was-playing-Darth-Vader type. Apparently, super nice to my dad as well… I love nice guys.
  8. I was trying to go in chronological order, but I had to save the best for last.  AND THE WINNER IS….

12032780_10153669241133960_9051111248932902804_oLifeguard – at the Hilton Hotel at the rooftop pool.  Goodness gracious.  The kind of unanimous beauty that is agreeable with everyone: he is literally everybody’s type.  My mom become an embarrassing fan and we decided to sit at one of the tables and admire the view *ahem* overlooking “Venice” while he accidentally happened to be in front, bending down and casually hosing down the poolside with his shades on, you know, the usual.  My mom even told me to stand in front of him as a decoy and smile while she focused her lens on the background 😉  This photo she snapped of him walking down the stairs could easily be from Vogue magazine.

The aesthetics man.  Sigh. I did my duty to my friend, and it was beautiful.

It’s late, but are you guys interested in seeing the rest of the beautiful men?? If so, comment below and let me know 🙂

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3 Happiest Moments

Every time I read a Harry Potter book, I would pause when Harry had to use the Patronum charm to scare away the dementors.  I would rack my brain, unsure of what I would use as my happiest memory in a pinch.  Thankfully, in the past two years I can think of three points in time where I felt absolutely nothing but 100% bliss.

1.  My last night in Taiwan, Summer of 2014.  The last night: with all the wonderful people in one place, it was definitely the most bittersweet highlight of my trip there.  I loved the friends I made who I openly shared my stories with, cried with, laughed with, and explored with; they were memories that I never thought would happen to me.  About 17 of us gathered to eat dinner together and celebrate my farewell and Sharon’s birthday. 10604046_10152605361478960_8542847123242569586_o

Maybe it was the fact that I knew this trip would only last two months that I was so free-spirited and appreciative.  It was that whole sentimentality of “We will never all be together, at this exact place, at this exact time, at this exact mo-” well, you get the picture.   We found a rooftop-ish bar near central Taipei 101, drinking a little, taking photos, and just soaking in the moment.  Sharon gave me a gigantic card with heartfelt messages from everyone, and my Swedish friend Chris also gave me some (rather questionable) Swedish candy and a letter.  If there is any direct key to my heart, it would be a long sappy letter.  Sharon, Nathalie, and I sneaked away from the group to walk up to the actual rooftop, and we lay there looking over the city and the sky.  15 minutes of unadulterated peace, where I genuinely could not ask for anything more.

2.  My co-counselor’s surprise birthday celebration at camp, Summer of 2015. When you spend months holed up, a huge part of you enters hibernation mode and lays dormant, just hanging in there.  This is a unique circumstance applicable to just me, but what it does is wake me up when summer comes, and when I am in my happy place, I become aggressively friendly to make up for the rest of the times I am not.  Even complaining about stupid, trivial things like some seven-year old kid feeling up my boob, or people I worked with, brought me its own kind of happiness, because they were ordinary, fleeting problems.  Because when you’re depressed, all you see are the times you take from others, but when you’re happy, you give. It was nearing the end of Chinese-Immersion school, another bittersweet end, and I felt so grateful for the experience of learning, especially about children.  Let me tell you, kids be crazy.  But they’re also mean.  And sweet, hilarious, inappropriate, and cute.  Somehow I must’ve stalked my way into learning that my co-counselor’s birthday was in a few days, and with the other co-counselors, we devised a plan and riled up the students to put in a real team effort to surprise him.  True to Jasmine-style with sappy ass cards, we compiled a giant birthday card; his brother bought him a fancy cake, and our boss even bought him a batman t-shirt.  She sent him to the back of the building to do monotonous work in organizing reading books, and we herded all the kids into the kitchen to wait with baited breath. 11907853_10153558106773960_9058393633543729590_oAndddd it was a SUCCESS!  His reaction was so pure and so amazing that it caught me off guard and made my emotions soar off the charts.  11878987_10153558107218960_488502593364788403_oMaybe it reminded me of how overwhelming positive moments can be when they do come along.

3.  Gondola ride in Venice, Summer of 2015.  Getting anywhere is a fucking challenge.  You’re battling your anxiety, your fears, your limitations, physically and mentally.  But let me tell you, the journey to Venice is probably what seeing your baby after being pregnant for 9 months might feel like.  I imagine anyway.  As my parents and I roamed around the city and I stood in St. Mark’s Square, images of me being proposed to here flooded my mind.  And then I went and stuffed my face with gelato, shielding it with trepid glances at the many doves fluttering above my head.  Yes, birds have pooped on me before, so no, I wasn’t being too paranoid.  But, I digress.  We communicated as best we could with a handsome, older Venetian man and before we knew it, were ushered into a gondola.  I had never stood anywhere before where any given direction I stared took my breath away. 12045804_10153669170038960_6049158632185807722_o A city built on water, Venice was surreal.  A figment of my imagination, where men looked good sporting man buns. 

What are your happiest moments?