bo kaap and the infinite brightness of being

Dearest ______,

Following a year that was profuse with adversities and setbacks in the global front,   I feel that going into 2014 calls for optimism and light.

While recounting some of the more blessed days of 2013, I just thought of showing you some of the happy colours we found at Bo Kaap, Cape Town’s very own Malay Quarter.

1) The year saw reprieves from real life problems in the form of viral Twerking videos online, the Breaking Bad series among other TV greats, and pop song obsession after pop song obsession (Anna Kendrick’s Cups, Daft Punk’s Get Lucky, and so on).
2) Gay rights hit milestone after milestone, from the US Supreme Court voiding Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act to the new pope suggesting a departure from the Catholic “obsession” with homosexuality. (Yahoo News)
3)  Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina was elected the 266th pope, whereupon he took the name “Francis”. (Wikipedia) And so far, he’s been quite the amazing figurehead as evidenced by point number 2 above.

4) The Duchess of Cambridge gave birth to England’s future King. The wee babe carries a big title: His Royal Highness Prince George Alexander Louis of Cambridge. (Yahoo News) And you may bet how the whole world collectively gave a sigh of “Aaaw” at this wee historical occasion.
5) At just 16 years old, Malala Yousafzai became the most influential teenager in the world having overcome unbeatable odds. Her courage in defying the Taliban, and her forgiveness of the group’s almost lethal attack against her, left many humbled and in awe. (Yahoo News)
6) 3D Printers, Google Glass, Samsung Galaxy S4, Sony Play Station 4, among other gadgets technology magazine T3 thought rocked 2013.
7) With a slew of natural calamities hitting the Philippines in a span of a year (earth quakes, tropical storm surges, etc), the whole world came together to show support and solidarity for the nation’s re- building.
8) Adorable animal videos online that have gone viral, like these. (Huffington Post)
9) Jennifer Lawrence.
10) Iranian President Hassan Rouhani took to Twitter with a series of fascinating messages that stunned and encouraged many foreign policy observers. (Yahoo News) He tweeted his thanks to US President Obama, for their 15- minute telephone conversation regarding solutions to the global nuclear crises.  This came after 34 years of both nations’ mutual antipathy.
11) On a more personal level:
– We moved to a spacious apartment, where we see clumps of trees from our living room windows and get strong winds during all times of the day
– We spent a lot of good times with our good friends in Singapore (even went to Melaka with the whole gang)
– We played quite a number of gigs with my bandmates from Lupa and the Superstars and Narcloudia
– I got promoted at work
– I went on an “introspective” temple run in Thailand, prior to my wedding
– I had an embarrassing and hilarious Bachelorette’s party, also prior to my wedding
– My mom finally came back home from New York, for her retirement in the Philippines
– My fiance’s family finally met my own family and flew all the way to our hometown to do so
– I finally got to take my family on a proper vacation to Indonesia
– I married a great guy named Jawo Bolivar,  in the presence of an intimate number of family and friends
– We visited South Africa during a very historical time for the world (the death of South Africa’s Nelson Mandela)

12) If the 11 photo captions above can teach us anything, it’s that with every dreadful thing you may encounter, good things- no, great things– also happen!



*If you would like to receive and read more letters, please feel free to subscribe. Thank you.

Photography and text by Author unless otherwise stated. All rights reserved.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s