olympic cauldron

Canadian Vesper
Softly at the close of day,
As our campfire fades away.
Silently each Guide should ask,
Have I done my daily task.
Have I kept my honour bright,
Shall I guiltless sleep tonight,
Have I done and have I dared,
Everything to ‘Be Prepared’.

This was one of my favourite Girl Guide songs, and we would sing it at the end of every campfire. It was a song to signify the end of day, or the end of an event. There’s a great tune to it and I have never forgotten the lyrics. Funnily enough, this song’s called: Canadian Vesper.

Seven years has flown by. I will never forget the day when I first arrived in Vancouver, and having to wait an hour in line for my visa. The anxiety and frustration I felt because of the slow service and the unknown outcome if I would be granted a visa. My three years at Simon Fraser University were well spent, and I managed to travel to most of the west coast, including a 10+ hour bus ride to Calgary to see my cousins for the first time in 18 years. My next move to Toronto was equally eventful and amazing, and I will never forget the first yoga class and the teacher who taught that class. I will never forget my entire yoga journey, right from the first class at Semperviva in Vancouver to 889 Yoga in Toronto. All the beautiful people whom I have met along the way, and who created such amazing impact onto my life. And so, after seven years, this is the end of my journey in Canada — for now.

It is tough to leave Canada, and Toronto in particular. Even though I left Singapore at 20 years old, the growth of my body, mind and spirit took place in Canada. I found meaning to live during my time in Toronto, especially in the past two years. The work that I’m going to do in Singapore is because of the knowledge gained during my stay here. I never thought that life could be so amazing, not till I met certain individuals who stood by me relentlessly through rain and shine, and told me that everything would be alright. I am completely grateful to everyone who has shared their love and energy with me over this past seven years.

As I reflect on the lyrics of ‘Canadian Vesper’, I can safely say that I have done my task and my honour is still shining brightly and radiantly. I have absolutely no regrets for all that I have done in the past seven years, and my task to grow as an individual is an on-going one, because one can never stop growing. However, I can safely say that my experience here has made me a stronger and happier person than before. My honour to live life with meaning and purpose is shining so bright, and I cannot wait to share my love for yoga and life with everyone in the world. I cannot wait to work with women and girls in Singapore. I have done and dared with all that I had during my time in Canada, and I know that my journey ahead is filled with promises, hopes, and dreams — all waiting to be fulfilled.

Canada, it has been a great seven years. Thank you for your hospitality and glowing hearts. To all my friends and family in Canada, thank you so much for your love and support over the years. I love you all so much.

I’m ending off with another Girl Guide song, one that we sing at farewell ceremonies. And Canada, this is just goodnight, not goodbye.

Hmmm, I want to linger.
Hmmm, A little longer.
Hmmm, A little longer,
Here with you.

Hmmm, It’s such a perfect night.
Hmmm, It doesn’t seem quite right.
Hmmm, That this should be,
My last with you.

Hmmm, And come September,
Hmmm, I will remember,
Hmmm, Our Guiding days,
Of friendships true.

Hmmm, And as the years go by,
Hmmm, I’ll think of you and sigh.
Hmmm, This is good night
And not good bye.

Hmmm I want to linger.
Hmmm A little longer.
Hmmm A little longer,
Here with you.