♪Five hundred twenty five thousand six hundred (525,600) minutes,
♪How do you measure, measure a year?
―“seasons of Love” from the musical Rent―
With just one day to go to finish this year, this song came to my mind, which got me thinking “How do I measure year 2015?”.
Then I came to pick up travelling, job, people and books.
The first half of this year, I travelled a lot:
- Many missions in Chile, in particular to the Robinson Crusoe Island,
- Santa Cruz and Okinawa (Bolivia) and Bonito (Brazil) ,
- Leaving Chile,
- Japan Rail Pass trip
- Moving in Mongolia
This year, I changed a job (Embassy → Save the Children)
Every time I travel or change a job, I meet new people, which is quite exciting. Equally, meeting people I already know is exciting, too. The both are good to measure this year.
After reviewing my Amazon and Kindle account, I read around 50 books this year (4-5 books/month) this year, with which I am not satisfied. Although the quality of reading is more important than the quantity, the books I can read in my whole life will be very limited and there are so many great books out there, so I need to push further next year as well as choosing the ones I want/need to read.
When I come back to Japan, I tend to buy many books from Japanese Amazon, one of which is the book about freeing from North Korea: “IN ORDER TO LIVE: A North Korean Girl’s Journey to Freedom (Yeonmi Park, September 2015 )”
In short, this is about a North Korean girl who decided to escape from the country at the age of 13, then she had to go through many struggles from North Korea→China→Mongolia→South Korea. This book, written by now North Korean human right activist (10 years younger than I), taught me three important things: the situation of North Korea, what freedom means, and education empowers gaining freedom.
Here is her speech which made her a famous North Korean human rights activist:
【Yeonmi Park – Escaping from North Korea in search of freedom】
Please take time to think about the following question:
How do you measure this year?
This time, I learned that:
You can look back over the last year, we can take some events to measure the year instead of calendar, and for me, they were traveling, job, meeting people and books.
Thank you for reading and I wish you a happy new year!