I suppose I am supposed to write some long reflections on how exchange has been now that it has come to an end. I won't though, the last few times I wanted to write long reflections I never got round to doing so because there is just too much to say heh. So I won't promise any such thing this time round.

Instead, I'll just just mention some of the most important experiences/lessons/objectives/whatever, basically summing up the exchange experience:
- A time away from a stressful environment to relax and enjoy, 'travel the world' in a sense
- A time away to take a step back from all the unpleasant things of 2015 and 2016, ponder about them and rise above them emerging as a better person
- Unintended, but a time away to rediscover all the things precious about being home and to learn to treasure them more. Also realising that travelling while awesome, isn't as fulfilling or meaningful as many other things
- We the church, as followers of Jesus Christ, will love as Jesus loved, teach what Jesus taught us, and obey as He obeyed, as the Spirit gives us strength
- Learning to live alone
- Learning to live with people of other cultures and very different backgrounds
- Learning new things about what it means to build friendships instead of just being in my comfort zone
- Learning to love better, and to lay myself down
- Experiencing a different way of living
- Experiencing a very similar yet very different church environment, which taught me much about myself and about serving
- Experiencing a different kind of education system with ideas I can apply
- Cooking
- Weather
- Cycling

And much more that I can't think of at the top of my head. All in all, it was good. It was a much needed time away which I felt I really benefited alot from, and now I feel refreshed and ready to tackle the challenges ahead this year.

As an aside, it's funny how year after year when I look back at myself previously, I feel like such a fool. I thought I knew much back then, but I clearly didn't, and it's painfully obvious now. Right now, I think I have grown wiser and I know better. Come 2018 though, I'm sure I would look back and think about the stupid things I've thought or done in 2017. Whatever.

2017 is a brand new journey for me. It's a new season in more ways than one. There will definitely be new obstacles ahead but I am confident that God will carry me through.

Once again, some quickfire thoughts, this time on the year ahead (the first half at least):
- My role in DI, in a time where DI itself is being redefined
- Venturing away from the soft marketing of branding and communications into the harder sciences of data analytics, as well as taking on the second specialisation in operations management
- Python
- Internship applications and internship for the most important year
- Learning to truly love the people around me
- Transitions
- Life
- Changes within the family

Just within the first week of being back in Singapore. I have felt a whole bunch of things. The creeping in of stress as I face possibly the toughest sem yet ahead of me, the weight of my responsibilities, uncertainty in terms of not knowing where many things are going, pressure of performing my best for internship applications and later the internship itself.

These stresses were part of my first week, but despite that, I would consider it a great first week. Finally caught up with many people. Food, yes of course all the wonderful food. It feels great to be home. That, and the knowledge that despite all my stress and uncertainties, I know God is with me and He is all that I need.

This is 2017, this is Act III. It is a year of new beginnings, let's go.