Saturday, November 20, 2010

Post-Burglary & Amsterdam Autumn

I'm back!

That was probably one of the longest blog breaks I've taken... Was also off Twitter for a while. I think I was just a little bit freaked by the burglary and was beating a hasty retreat into my little cave (y'know, in "FUCK OFF, WORLD!" mode).

Thank you all for your well wishes and comments on the last post, you are all very sweet. Apologies if I didn't reply. I was just in a different head space and er... forgot my manners.

This is what I have learnt:

Doh. I've got a self-locking door, so usually when I leave the house I double-lock it by turning the key round and round in the lock. But... when I'm home, I don't. Or rather, I didn't. I figured... Hello? I'm home, right? What could possibly happen?!

The cops suspect the burglar came through the front door coz there was no sign of forced entry. I had no idea that with a self-locking door, it's extremely easy for someone to stick a credit card through the lock and click it open if it's not also double-locked with the key.

Knowing that this could have been prevented (ie, MY fault), it's much easier to handle... Coz I can actually do something about it. And no, it means I wasn't a walking target. I was just stupidly careless.

That front door is ALWAYS double-locked now.

Doh. I wasn't insured. Even if I had been insured, they probably wouldn't have reimbursed me because I hadn't done point number 1, above. (I calculated that all in, I'd have to fork out about another EUR2,200 replacing all my stuff. And then there's Christmas coming up; the trip back to Singapore and a month in Mysore. Grrr.)


It's just stuff. And it's just money. But it's just such a bloody pain in the ass.

Like, Bloody difficult. Because my bike was stolen (again!) in the burglary (I can't get over the irony of how leaving the bike in the house rather than out in the street coz it's "safer" in the house turned out to be less safe!), I haven't been able to get to the MWF shala in the mornings. I've managed ONE home practice this week, which helped me focus and get through the work day.

Otherwise, what's helped me to feel safe again at home has been short meditation sessions... short sessions that help me "own the space" at home again, with intentions such as:

Inhale Positivity
Exhale Negativity

Inhale Courage
Exhale Fear

Inhale Peace
Exhale Nervousness (I kinda trip up over this one coz it's too many syllables when you're trying to concentrate. HAHAHA!)

If nothing else, at least all that deep breathing helps to reset the sympathetic nervous system, letting go of that post-burglary-stress.

Funny enough, I've had better sleep in the past couple of weeks since the burglary. I think I've only had one insomniac night since. Go figure.

Oh... the other thing I've been doing too is burning Sage Oil. That helps to clear the energy in a space, right? So even if it's bordering on the Woo-Woo, if nothing else at least it gives me some peace of mind (short of hiring a fengshui consultant to assess the energy in this place).

So now... Life is slowly moving back to normal. I couldn't find another bike that I liked as much as the Snow White 2nd bike I had (for barely a month?) So er... I found it online and ordered another one. It arrives on Monday. Whoop! Whoop!

On the work front, I'll be taking off again in a week's time - will be shooting my next spot in 5 cities over a 19-day period... Heading to Hong Kong, Cape Town, Brussels, Paris and Helsinki. So there'll be some great photos to share.


My camera got taken in the burglary too. HAHAHAHA! You'll have to live with iPhone4 photos instead.

Speaking of which, I've been meaning to share some stunning pictures of Amsterdam in Autumn. And since the past few posts have been all wordswordswords and not enough pictures, I hope you enjoy these (Aarrghhhh! That bike basket shot makes me weep.)



  1. Hi Jaime,

    Good to have you back.

    At least you know its preventable, was anyone else in the locality hit the same night I wonder?

    And how's the visa thing going?

  2. thanks kev. x
    cops didn't say if anyone else got burgled. part of me is asking if i hadn't shut the door properly behind me... but... it's pointless going down the hypothetical road. blechhh.

    embassy hasn't responded. i've been too flat out to go to the hague in person again. and i'm about to travel round the world till just before christmas so i can't leave my passport with them if they need me to. worse case scenario: i'll get a tourist visa from an agent when i'm back in singapore. those take 3 days and seem to still be accepted, from the sound of things.

    the only thing that's worrying me now is the state of my practice. i'm going to mysore the most out of shape i've ever been. how's that for a lesson in humility? :)

  3. I was wondering if the Embassy had your passport, cos when you got burgled I thought at least her passport wasn't taken. Be much simpler all round if they will accept a tourist visa.

    I'm sure your practice will be fine in the heat and humidity of India, European winter practice is just hibernation until the sun comes back out. Got nice and sweaty at the Lifecentre this morning though :-)

  4. I love your photos and am mucho jealous. I moved to Florida where there is no fall. It's summer year round, and I get no cool leaves changing colors.

    However I hope you're alright from the crummy burglary.

  5. On the visa thing, was chatting to my teacher the other day and she mentioned that "we were advised to just get tourist visas" as in, that's what Sharath told all the teachers going for the level 2 authorised teacher training this summer. Just a thought :)
    I like your meditation intentions, I do similar actually and it really seems to help (is "anxiety" any less tricky than nervousness? or straightforward "fear"?). Actually my very first teachers used to say "inhale peace, exhale release" as us beginners were in savasana, that was kind of nice too & covers a lot of bases.
    And lovely photos - that last one, awwww, so gorgeous! Good to have you back! xx

  6. Kev: I'd changed bags the night of the burglary, so my wallet and camera were in a small purse that got taken. My passport was in my regular big handbag that was left intact. PHEW! (can you imagine how much more drama that would've been?!)

    Michael - I hear you! Where I'm from in Singapore has summer all year round too - we get hot and humid, or hot, humid and wet (with monsoon season). So this is a welcome change! I'm so afraid of the impending cold though, that I'm escaping to India for a month in January, the coldest month here! Hehe.

    Mel - Yup, my friend who's there now has said the same thing. Everyone who's gone there on the student visa has had more hassles with having to register at the police station, etc. Anyways... the embassy here asked "what's the school registration number?" and when I posed that question to KPJAYI, they said "we don't have one yet. If they insist on it, just get a tourist visa". So much kerfuffle!!
    PS. I was gonna go to The Hague tomorrow morning, BUT... the bike arrives at the office in the morning. Visa or bike... visa or bike... Maybe I'll go to the Hague on Tuesday morning instead. Heh. x

  7. The consulate refused my student visa application and had me turn it into a tourist one instead.

    So glad you're back!

    Shout-out to Singapore, my husband was there recently for over a week. He LOVED it. :)

  8. Hey LI!
    Really? He could handle the humidity? I'm impressed! I still can't get over how 2 minutes out of the shower and I'd be perspiring again in Singapore. GROSS. (This means before you've even started the first surya, you're already damp. IIIIIICK!)

    My life would be easier with a tourist visa in Mysore. I hope this happens tomorrow too or I'd have missed that window and will need to get it done at the last minute back in Singapore. Argh!

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