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What’s really been going on…

Ever have a time in your life where so much is happening, it seems almost unreal? As I wrote my immigration form a few hours ago to re-enter India from Singapore, I declared my travels in the last 6 days – Singapore obviously, but also India for a day, before that the UK and Canada.

And why so much travel? The real reason combines the personal and the professional.

On the personal front…

Lots of different things however the real big news is… drum roll here… my partner and I finally took the plunge to sign a piece of paper in Winnipeg with a wee wedding at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights. We knew from the moment we met over five years ago that we wanted to spend our lives together, however took our time to get to this stage of bringing our respective families together in celebration.

It still feels strange when folks teasingly call me “Mrs Smith” – a last name I am not adopting but respect completely. I apparently even accidentally hung up on a consulting associate who merrily greeted me that way! (in fairness, the call didn’t connect properly)

Within a week of being wedded in Winnipeg, I was on more planes and found myself in Singapore for some work related meetings. Which is only the tip of the iceberg so to speak as on the professional front as much has happened over the last few months:

  • I was delighted to be back in Jakarta working on a project from September 2016 to December then back briefly in March and April 2017. Naturally this meant a few stops in Singapore in my crisscrossing back and forth between India and Indonesia…
  • January and May were pre-occupied with India projects that enabled trips to Kolkata and Kochi – it had been years since I was in Kerela so that was a particular treat!
  • February brought me to Delhi to co-facilitate a remarkable conference
  • More is unfolding in the technology space with the India company association… plus some new developments brewing that seem particularly exciting!

Beyond the personal and professional, everyday life in India inspired a few amused cribs about:

  • Ready or not, July 1st introduces India’s Goods & Services Tax with some absurd moments and migration migraines from Service Tax to GST
  • After a couple of years of effort, I finally successfully withdrew my last Indian Provident Fund. If ever anyone has tried to do this – foreigner or Indian – you will understand this is NOT necessarily a simple process!
  • After even more effort, a weird system error was finally corrected so that the Indian government was finally convinced I actually had paid my taxes in 2009. Really… honestly… I did… it only took 8 years for them to admit it!!
  • We also learned to survive the aftermath of November 2016’s demonetization in which cash was temporarily dethroned

So from newly wedded bliss, professional developments, to the everyday follies in India, life continues to be an amazing adventure!

There you have… a bit of insight into what’s really going on…

Related posts:

3rd year + 13th Quarter – Belated update

After a bit of a hiatus, time to bring back a quarterly summary of what’s been happening.

In real life, there have been a few fairly momentus changes in the last few months. Most are ones I don’t tend to talk about. Bottom line is I had to leave India to change my visa… thankfully was successful!

There were many hopeful moments of a return to Indonesia or Malaysia or other opportunities that have finally materialized with a project in Jakarta starting later this month!

I also had my first article published on Scroll.in :

A foreign woman’s response to Mahesh Sharma: It’s got nothing to do with dressing modestly (more…)

Neglected blog

You know you have a neglected blog when you are inundated with offers for content ‘support’ from various corners.

A year ago, I felt the need to change the way I approached content on Everyday Asia to give greater focus to four different areas: HomeAwayWork and Play.

Did it stick? Not really… partly as my travels significantly reduced and the work situation became complicated. Even on the play front, I would attend so many amazing events but these did not translate into posts… (more…)

Everyday Asia 2015 – Happy New Year!

How was your 2015? If anything like mine… zap! It was gone!

After an insane amount of travel in 2014 with a small project in Malaysia, a big project in Indonesia (I MISS Jakarta!!), some work in Japan, China, Philippines and Singapore… 2015 seemed rather tame.

Partner and I at BAFTA

Partner and I at BAFTA

Only a couple trips to Singapore, a jaunt to the UK and Canada plus a few domestic trips to Delhi, Kolkata and Jodhpur thrown in for good measure to augment everyday life in Mumbai.

(more…)

Everyday Asia – feast or famine?

Yes Everyday Asia… you have been sorely neglected!

Yes there are a bunch of partly written blog posts sitting in your draft folder…

Yes your phone is full to bursting with photos from various adventures…

Yes you were busy busy busy!

So… if you can’t write juicy little separate posts, just do a quick round-up… yes?

Here goes! (more…)

Expat Focus on ‘Everyday Asia’ & AMWF advice

Check it out! Expat Focus featured Everyday Asia as a Top 5 Expat Blogs – India. For those not familiar with Expat Focus, it is a website that provides all sorts of resources for expats plus also features expat blogs and discussion forums.

They also just published an interview with me. Woo hoo!

Hello Mumbai

Hello Mumbai

Here’s a quick ‘cheat sheet’… for details read the full interview here:

  • Who the heck are you? Check out about
  • Where, when and why move? Travel tales… how I got hooked on going away!
  • What challenges did you face? Typical starving student stuff but all good fun
  • Other expats in your area? Originally almost none. Now oodles! In stumbling distance even…
  • What do you like / dislike about life where you are? Lots and nearly none 🙂
  • Biggest challenge? Eve teasing… the other side of my love affair with India
  • What advice would you give to someone following in your footsteps? Extract below…
  • What plans for the future? More of the same!

(more…)

The many faces of home

For those tuning in only now, I recently revamped how Everyday Asia is organised.

It is now ‘Home‘, ‘Away‘, ‘Work‘ and ‘Play… with a few other menu items like About, Quarterly Review and Start here..

You would think ‘Home‘ would be the easiest to do. Just slap on a new label to ‘Everyday India‘… except it raises a rather interesting question.. what and where is ‘home’… and why? (more…)

Travel tales… How I got ‘hooked’ on going ‘away’

We’ve introduced ‘Work‘, messed around with ‘Play‘, clearly ‘Travel’ can simply be replaced with ‘Away‘!

So why bother with a post? Well… you see… it seems a good point to pause and share the journey… insight into ‘travel tales’  which help explain how I got from there (Winnipeg) to here (Mumbai).

And warning! This is a long post, so go grab a cup of chai, coffee or other liquid libation and come join me in a trip down memory lane… (more…)

Company anniversary – welcoming work

With social media, being inundated with birthday greetings – especially over Facebook – has become the norm. Hundreds of enthusiastic personalised wishes can get a bit overwhelming!

What snuck up on me was the recognition social media brought to the 1st anniversary of opening my company in Singapore.

Given that I’m buried deep into sorting through the accounts and navigating another tax system, the last thing I’ve been thinking about is celebrating one year of being my own boss internationally!

Which made it all the more delightful to see how many folks paid attention to LinkedIn’s ‘work anniversary’ alert to hit ‘like’ plus send a congratulatory message! Thanks folks!!

So in celebration of “CLH Consulting Pte Ltd” turning one, I’m delighted to introduce the new ‘work‘ category to Everyday Asia. (more…)

Everyday Asia – Time to change!

More than two years ago I started the blog ‘Everyday Adventures in Asia (mostly)‘ with the thought to share :

  • Insights into everyday life adventures in my adopted ‘home’ India and working ‘homes’ all around Asia
  • Tales of past travel adventures with a focus on Asia
  • General adventures with topics of interest from the perspective of a Canadian woman living long-term in Asia

I had no feel for what blogging meant, just had a bit of time on my hands, enjoyed reading a few friend’s blogs and thought – why not? (more…)

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