Let’s talk about bread. And let’s talk about life.
For those of you who go way back with me — you’ll already know that Arabic classes took up the majority of my time in college. I met some of my favorite people, discovered my favorite foods, and daydreamed about someday living in the Middle East, basking in the heat and eating my weight in mana’eesh.
But something that we learned early in our intro courses was the word for bread: khubz. And in the Egyptian dialect, there was a synonym for bread — the same word you used for life: aishe.
Having just moved into a new house, I can speak from firsthand experience that figuring out what to hang on the walls can take the longest — especially when you want to share meaningful artwork.
I’ve recently begun buying artwork while traveling — but honestly, I haven’t done it enough! So in a pinch, I love turning to sites like Etsy and Society6 to supplement my artwork. Plus, supporting other artists like myself feels good.
Since I’ve been spending so much time browsing artwork (without committing enough to actually pull the trigger on any), I figured I’d share some of my favorites with you here. Hope you enjoy my alternate names for them 🙂
Two days in a row! We are on such a roll over here.
One of my favorite things to do, back in my Sweetsonian days, was creating playlists — ya know, back at the desk job when you listen to Spotify nonstop, before my life was taken over by conference calls.
Well, as a freelancer, I’m rarely at in-person meetings, and I spend 90% of my days on my own — and silence is the enemy these days. Insert my beloved Sonos + Spotify.
While I haven’t been blogging or sharing monthly playlists, you better believe I’ve been still building them — so here goes. Chill vibes for headphones at your desk, or unwinding to in the privacy of your living room.
Just about a year ago, Emily and I decided that our big trip would just have to be to Vietnam. She had never been to Asia (and the only Asian country I had been to was Singapore, which is basically “Asia light”), and we wanted a big, two-week trip to push us out of our comfort zones and help us really escape the grind that’s been life in DC.
So we did it. And oh, did Vietnam push our comfort boundaries. To start, we were a little worried about the flight situation — DC to LA is 6 hours, LA to Tokyo was 14, and then Tokyo to Ho Chi Min City was another 7 hours. So to say the least, we were trying to find all the hacks in the world to make this bearable (fwiw — this hack was a game changer for me).
It’s been a while since I’ve fallen hard for a city — and Singapore really was it. I had been putting off an Asia trip along the line of reasoning that the flights were too long and I’d want more time than a job in the US would allow for. Two weeks of vacation simply wouldn’t be enough.
But it’s been almost 4 years since I last switched jobs, and I’ve never been in a place where I could just take 3 months off — and a decent flight deal to Singapore made it feel just right. Singapore isn’t a city where you’d feel like you’re diving head-first into Asia; as a former British colony and a major business hub throughout the world, you’ll find so many of the amenities you’d miss while traveling in less developed countries. In fact, there were moments when it barely felt like I had left the US, but then, you turn a corner and are reminded that you’re enveloped by a completely different world.
Anyway, more on the specifics of why I loved Singapore later. But in the meantime, here’s my go-to list of places to stay, things to eat, and views to explore on a short trip to Singapore.