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Birthday Reflections 2019

20191028 IMG 6150 Birthday Reflections 2019 Jamie Chan
Cat of the Fushimi Inari Shrine climbed onto my lap and fell asleep.

It’s been a good two years since my last post; three since the last Birthday reflection of the year. I don’t know where the time goes; but I’m chuffed to know that with enough alcohol, I look like a 22-year-old Korean Music Producer. Thank you, random strangers?

A lot has happened in the past 2 years; the past 2 months even. For starters, I puked out 10 thousand words in exchange for a nice folder and to shake hands with a stranger.

20190830 IMG 5345 Birthday Reflections 2019 Jamie Chan
Floating through everything with the help of tiny pills and sneaky alcohol.

There were many times where the road leading up to the point on stage seemed impossible and frustrating. I have much to be grateful for during that insane trying period of managing an exhibition, opera, and dissertation in the same month. I owe a lot to H who mentored and pulled me through the entire paper from the ideation to the data collection, and analysis; thank you x

Despite the increasing amount of work I am doing for the arts, I am still shooting, running photography based workshops, and or Photovoice when I can (Hire Me).

Moving apartments/ offices is often one of the leading causes of anxiety; that said, I moved twice in the past months. The first move I did in 6 hours; the next, I had a little bit more time: 2 days to find a space and negotiate the rent.

So. Much. Fun.

After going through all of that, I think I’ll be relatively nonchalant if I’m told I have cancer tomorrow. Why the moves happened is not as interesting as how I did it all without jumping out of the window. For that, I mostly owe it to 5 incredibly important and special people. In particular, this woman:

Pan along with H, S, E, and J, I don’t know what I’ve done to have you in my life but thank you x

20191015 IMG 5944 Birthday Reflections 2019 Jamie Chan
With the fiddle.

For those who know, I stopped performing some 3 years ago; strange given that I’ve been singing and performing for more than half my life. Music has always grounded me and given what happened, I decided to pick up the cello again despite not playing it for almost 12 years.
Now that I am out and about with the cello, the number of people who think that it is the guitar, bass guitar or even the violin is shocking. People on the streets actually stop me to ask what instrument do I play! These days, I say that it is a big violin.
I mean, it is technically a violoncello; with some MAJOR size difference.

My teacher, K – bless him, is an incredibly serious musician, while I have a history of driving my teachers up the wall. English isn’t his first language while my Armenian does not go beyond improvised sign language so we have the funniest conversations as he has the arduous task of correcting all my mistakes from 12 years ago. Also, I can barely read music despite singing all my life which I think he forgets since I am able to sing what he plays but when it comes to me with the cello, I am a mess. I think that he is incredibly optimistic for wanting me to perform 2 pieces in December. Granted, I am playing and sounding far better than I ever did 12 years ago, I’m still not too sure how I am going to progress in time for an actual performance…

That said, going back to music grounds me; I don’t miss the social aspect of being in a choir much as the politics killed it for me, but I miss the music-making itself. I don’t think I will play at an orchestral level but for now, I am happy with making tiny improvements every week. My fingers, however, disagree and are screaming bloody murder… 

In any case, these are the tiny tidbits of what has been happening in my life. On top of the 6 weeks, 5 countries travel, and Japan. Lord, Japan; what a trip.
A friend told me that ‘you lead one of the most interesting life of any human being I know’ – I kinda want to disagree but I certainly won’t trade it for any other; even if I have to pick up dead leaves at 1 am (a story for another occasion).

I used to look forward to my birthday but with all that happened recently, I was just grateful for the day to go by without anything shocking. Thankfully none of that happened; instead, I got a candle on an egg tart. It was a good day.
Thank you all for the birthday wishes, I appreciate each and every one of them; especially for those in different time zones, thank you for taking the time to drop me a message or a call!
Here is to hoping that 22 gets better. No promises that I will update this space more often but who knows anymore. Life has a weird way with my plans In general.

L1000322 Birthday Reflections 2019 Jamie Chan

Infinite amount of choices, in this case, lamps.

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