Thursday Aug 06

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Meet Farha - find out how the cookie dough crumbles.

What do you do?

I’m in the health service.

Describe yourself in three words.

Witty, impulsive, and individual.

You have lived overseas for a while. Share some of the highlights of that journey.

In general, what sticks in my mind are the different lifestyles, cultures, and common perceptions and preconceptions of other countries and people. One of the highlights of my stay in the United States, was spending Thanksgiving at my boss’s and his family’s home. They went out of their way to serve me Halal turkey; they are very respectful of other’s religions and beliefs. It also gave me a first hand experience of this All-American holiday that we so often see or hear about in the media. Yup, it is all about food and football (NFL). They practically eat, watch some football, then eat some more…..and watch more football! I’m sure Bruneians would have no problem adapting to THAT!

Another memorable occasion was spending Hari Raya 2007 with the Bruneian families in Virginia & Washington D.C. Being such a small community, it felt like an instant family away from home. The biggest lesson I have learned is how lucky we really are as Bruneians, and not to take things for granted. You learn to appreciate even the most basic things when you are abroad, especially with what little support systems you have, i.e. not having family, relatives, or fellow Bruneians nearby. I have learned this the hard way having lived in both Ireland and the US.

What are three things you would not travel without, and why?

Cell phone for obvious reasons, my Canon digicam or DSLR depending on whether I want to travel light or be a little more indulgent, and my hair dryer, ‘cos I hate those hotel ones.

What did you miss most about Brunei when you were overseas?

My family.

Recommend two blogs for us to read and two people on Twitter for us to follow.

Blogs: - I’m drawn by his writing, and - by one of my good friends.

Twitter: @jackgraycnn - Producer / Writer for Anderson Cooper 360 of CNN (his Tweets are funny!), and @zulmaidy - multi-faceted journalist for the Borneo Bulletin & RTB, a.k.a. my brother.

Name your favourite local and international restaurant, and which dish would you recommend?

Local: The Airport Restaurant - Fave dish: Steamed fish, but I usually go for the buffet.

International: BoBrooks, Baltimore, Maryland, USA - Fave dish: Steamed crabs by the dozen on the deck, with a touch of class!

Name a 'must-visit' place in Brunei, and why. 

Cliché as it might be, The Empire Hotel and Country Club, where decadence meets breath-taking views of the South China Sea.

Complete this sentence:"In three years' time, I..."

….pray that I will look five years younger!



(yes, that is who you think it is in the background!)

Editor's Note: This feature barely skims the surface of Farhanina's journeys. Check out her blog, and read more about her travels to the Lone Star State, Nashville, Pittsburgh, and - of course, about how she bumped into Mr Big in The Big Apple. Farhanina's latest blog post is wittily titled 'What Tweet?' where she talks about Ramadhan in Brunei. Follow her on Twitter too - @Farhanina.
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