Monday, January 05, 2015

2014: One Year to Remember

To have met so many amazingly wonderful friends, to have grown and matured so much, to have tried many new things and to have experienced the wonders of Canada and the extreme coldness in Winnipeg; such occasions are rare. But to have been able to gain my freedom - this is once in a lifetime! Yes! Once in a lifetime!

The Beauty of Winnipeg [Winnipeg. From: redsealrecruiting.com]
2014 was one of my best years, really! And it all started in April when I quit my job as an instructor and when I was admitted into the University of Manitoba. I flew to Winnipeg in late April and attended UofM as a transfer student from Bellevue College. Honestly, days before my departure, I was again in a big dilemma - a condition which I kept questioning myself whether I had made the right decision to leave for and study in Canada. But I was incredibly glad that I did as Martin L. King once said, "Take the first step in faith, you don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step." I still need to make a start and try to achieve my dream even if I don't know how I would end up. But seriously, I am glad, I am..!

members of ISGWPG (Indonesian Student Group Winnipeg)
check: Celebrating the 69th in Winnipeg photos by Julius Muljadi
The year just passed saw many new awesome friends. Honestly, never have I ever expected to have met so many, many cool individuals, talked and worked with wonderful men, went out together with amazing friends, and did many cool and crazy stuffs with awesome people in this new environment. I was actually glad that I was admitted in the summer term because it was that term that many opportunities were available for me, it was that term that I was introduced to ISGWPG and some of its members and it was also that term when I was introduced to World W.I.S.E and UMSU. Later in August, I sent my resume and application form, went for the interview for W.I.S.E and I made it! so you know, it was never always bad to try new things out (in a positive way), I mean I have never in my mind ever thought of being selected as becoming one of the ambassadors to serve in World W.I.S.E for I was very brand new in that university - I did not even know which building is which that time. It was really, just out of my expectation or was it my luck?

But the fact that I am one of the 'chosen ones' now is something I should be proud of and I have promised to work hard to serve the organization well - to help organize some events, to promote W.I.S.E and its events and to assist the group in internationalizing the campus community. With every event, I have got the opportunity to work and network with the other 20+ ambassadors culturally different from me - we have together worked our asses off and contributed our time to making and achieving successful events. Grateful I am, so much, to have spent the time working with these awesome guys. Let's make 2015 another success!

World W.I.S.E Ambassadors [untitled by Luis A. Castro. from: facebook.com]
UMSU is another thing. I was introduced to UMSU and was kind of 'forced' to attend the orientation. The orientation itself was pretty boring but hey I met a great woman, soon-to-be my boss there! let's call her Shan. Shan is a very ambitious lady, very! She is pretty much the same age as I am, if not one/two year(s) older. I would say she is pretty hot too. Well anyway, from the moment we have met, we have established pretty strong bonds - here means working relationship to avoid any misinterpretation. I was trusted to many volunteer positions from server to bartender to game volunteer to information ambassador. As I volunteered in many different roles, I was also exposed to more and more interesting people - some are my friends now. It's all thanks to friends of mine who introduced me to UMSU and Shan.

Then, school started. em, Wait! Why did it turn into a summary of what have happened to me during the year 2014? But let's just continue. anyway, I enrolled myself to an introductory class - Introduction to Environmental Design. More friends, yay! Group projects were demanded and encouraged in this course. Honestly, I hate group projects. But because of it, I have known four more awesome friends and designers from my team. anw, glad that I was not in that team led by a retarded Filipino guy (not being racist).

and here goes my first group project; it was a Flashmob. [spot me! I am in the aquamarine group]

And lemme show you the wonders of WINNIPEG! First thing first, check temperature before you go out if you live or consider living in winnipeg, It's very important if you want to live longer lol. but trust me, you must! Today can reach as high as 20 C but tomorrow can go to as low as 5 C and the winter, my god! Winter here is kind of different, dry and cold (well, at least it is not wet) and extreme! Seriously, I can't even feel my fingers if I am staying outside for like only 5 minutes. But here comes the good thing: once you survive in Winnipeg, you can survive in almost any parts of the world. No kidding! But anyway, Winnipeg is a good city, a very good place to explore and for study actually.

Winter-peg! [untitled by Ken Gillespie. From: kengillespie.wordpress.com]
And finally, thanks to this new environment (as well as the previous city, Seattle) that has blessed me with so many of its wonders. People say environment shapes who you are. I can agree no more! I have matured and grown so much as an individual since I started living abroad. Not only am I demanded to be independent, but I am also forced to step outside of my comfort zone - one of which is to adapt to the new society different from what I am used to. And thanks to that, I am now a more open person, and I feel great to have been able to express who I really am in this land!

Yes I am also a more "free" individual now compared to what I was before! You know, I am not being rebellious or whatever but I really value freedom. Being free to me is being able to do what I want to do, yes freely. btw, the word "free" here does not have anything to do with drugs or sex or anything like that, it's just an expression; that I am no more restricted. And thank god! I was blessed with these heavenly great friends! With these guys especially, I feel very comfortable to be around with. They are the gifts and blessings I got this year!

Homestay 2014 (Missing Shayane and Michael)
All in all, it's been a really good year! Great start, great journey, great end; 2014, a year to remember. Indeed!

gweenkent

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