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The Golden Week – Yoga, Painting, Reading, and Reflecting: Day 1

This is the first day of the seven full days of me being with myself, doing what I love, and really being isolated by choice. This is the week of sweet escape from all the craziness at work, in Bangkok, and really in everything surrounding my usual habitat. I hope to be with myself more, chasing my passion more, and mentally rest more. You know what? It seems to be working so far!

This all started when I was mid-way through my first project back at the firm. I was keen to bring back my good old practice of taking a break between projects – mostly to consume the piled-up public holidays that I missed and to search for a good project to roll on after. However, my usual break back then was going on a trip somewhere – not being stuck in Bangkok (or even Thailand). Therefore, I started looking for options… but there weren’t many. With Thailand being hit hard by the third wave of COVID-19, many provinces require all travelers from Bangkok to quarantine at the accommodation for 14 days or until leaving the province. This means that my trip is going to just be another round of self-isolation.

I’m left with Pattaya, Rayong, Karnchanaburi, and Samui. Samui would be ideal, but the total price tag including air fare and accommodations are really a lot. Karnchanaburi also has a nice raft that I can stay but the good rooms were already taken by that point. I ended up with Rayong since I haven’t been relaxing in Rayong – ever!

As I finished choosing the location, I then had to plan for the trip. There isn’t much to do in Rayong to be honest – especially with the mid-summer heat and the COVID-19 situation. Since I really miss going to yoga studio and the retreat, I ended up planning myself a yoga retreat with my favorite teachers teaching me through AloMove, a yoga video platform by Alo.

Initially, I packed my day with 6 hours of yoga practice. However, on the last week of my project, I got so sick that my entire body hurts and I could barely exercise. I decided to ramp down my daily practice to only 4 hours.

On top of yoga, painting was added to the agenda since I haven’t touched my brushes for the past few weeks. I was really behind on my new year resolution of creating 50 decent paintings this year, and I was still very busy with everything else in life. Plus, I also have a lot of video tutorials and painting books that I need to go through to upskill myself in this. All in all, this seems to work quite well.

Lastly, reading was added last minute as I picked up a personal development book last week. I started to want to be back at reading some good book to enlighten myself over this break as well, and reading is one of the thing that I want to do, but haven’t had time to do much over the first quarter of the year.


The first day was a success. I finished all the videos that I have planned. I have done three paintings – not my best, but at least they are all good starts in their own ways. I have also finished two chapters of different books that I am reading.

To be honest, I’m happier today than getting all the compliments at work – or actually this is the happiest day in my life in a while. I really enjoy the fact that I am doing something good for myself physically and mentally. I beat my own ass to get up and exercise. I finished 4 hours of yoga practice in a day for the first time in years. The savasana at the end of my 3.5 hours of practice felt like heaven, and the final resting posture at the end of the last class was a bliss. I smiled the whole way through like a mad person, but it was a true effortless smile.

I think we all deserve this in life once in a while, and throughout this journey, I need to reflect how can I bring this to my life more often…

Welcome to the beginning of the blissful journey.

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