asean blogger festival day 3: a short update #abfi

Blink an eye and it's already the last night that I would spending here in Solo, Indonesia, as part of the international delegates for the 2013 ASEAN Blogger Festival. in this short three days, I have already gone through the experience of being a batik fashion model, speaking about Singapore tourism and even visiting one of our ancestors called the Homo Erectus. And yes, I know that the Erectus part sounds quite wrong if you think about it, but it's science so don't complain.

my 5 seconds of fame as a batik male fashion model

giving the country report talk with chan (mydaydream89), credits to @anggaramahendra for the picture

i even planted my own tree!

While the different activities have been fun on their own, I think the biggest takeaway that I gained from this entire experience itself was the broadening of my perspective. All along in Singapore, I have been content with what I have and only looking to make it big in the Singapore/Malaysia blogging scene only without even thinking one bit about the bigger picture. Little did I know that beyond this shell of mine, there are bigger blogging communities out there with different perspective to share, just like this ASEAN bloggers community.

It was a humbling experience listening to Preetam talk about the initiatives put forth by other bloggers in their country. In Malaysia for example, we complain about the rural folk not being able to critically examine the news given by the mainstream media but how many of us are doing something to address it? In Cambodia for example, they have bloggers going down to villages teaching the rural people how to use Google and asking them to use it every time the government says something, which is an invaluable skill because it encourages the critical evaluation of information, something that we desperately need in Malaysia, for example.

I think that's what living in a semi-developed or developed country does to you though. We are so comfortable living in a shell until we forget that things are not often a simple as they seem. The world is so huge with so many people and each of them have their unique experience to share. And just because they may come from a place which is less "developed" than ours, it doesn't mean that we are in any way superior than them or that we cannot learn anything from them. Like I said, it was a humbling experience.

As luck would have it, I don't have enough time to talk about this in depth. Would perhaps write a post in more detail when I get back to Singapore but for now I would only leave it here. And once again, I'm am honoured to be a part of this event.


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