Phang Nga, Thailand: This last day of the year and of TransAmerica 2010, and both end on a high note. During the summer I cycled 3,700 miles coast-to-coast across the United States to raise awareness and funds for A New Day Cambodia. In total, I raised just over US$37,000, a sum 20+% above my fundraising target. With the generosity of over 100 friends and industry colleagues, US$10 was contributed for every mile that I cycled across America. This money will go a long way in helping 100 very deserving children a real chance of a productive life free of poverty. Thank you all so much for your interest in and support of this mission.
With the recurrence of the number of 37, I did some research in numerology to understand its significance. It appears 37 is full of Judeo-Christian symbolism, and the number represents “the individual evolution in the cosmic organization.” Yup, that sums up my year.
Two nights ago in a lovely Thai beach community, I hosted at my residence a cocktail reception for about 30 neighbors of Natai beach. A fellow neighbor and good friend, Kung and her extended family, did all the heavy lifting for this cocktail party; my role was to speak about my cycling trip and A new Day Cambodia, and what motivated me toward TransAmerica 2010. It was very befitting that Dorine, a friend who lived in Phnom Penh until recently and introduced me to A New Day Cambodia almost a year ago, was on hand at this charity event. THB75,000 was raised at this charity acution event, which took my fundraising over the $37,000 finish line. Many friends contributed items for the auction, from babysitting services to home-cooked breakfasts, home-made dumplings and yoga lessons. A good industry friend and talented artist in Singapore, Janine, contributed a beautiful original piece of artwork of an ostrich with an important reminder that we should keep our head out of the sand. How appropriate. Rather than speaking about cycling, I spoke about chasing dreams, and my ability this year to realize one particular dream in cycling across the US. A New Day Cambodia also enables its students, through education, to dream of a productive life beyond poverty. How empowering.
The ability to chase one’s dreams is a very special privilege. With 2011 comes new beginnings, new aspirations. My new big dream is to cycle around the world in stages, and I am already deep in intensive research as I prepare to chase this new dream.
God bless. Follow your bliss. And wishing you a very happy new year.
31 December 2010