Written by 9:09 am Everyday Life, Life English • 36 Comments

Heal Your Soul or Hold Your Seal

Inertia, Prejudices, and Norms somehow are pulling people back and locking them in their comfort zones. As a result, a majority of workers automatically plunge into their struggles without a way out. One day, they look back and desperately show their bitter regret of living a zombie life for their entire journey. If you see the situation best describes you, it’s time to make your own choice:  “Heal The Soul or Hold The Seal”.

A breakdown can remind us to slow down, regroup, take a breath and look at other possibilities. It can be a time of remembering what is really important and letting go of what’s not. – Kristen Boice


20.11.2022, 5 a.m

As planned, I quickly packed some clothes and tried to stuff my laptop, tablet, and camera into my black canvas backpack. I had a trip to Bao Loc with my “bro”. The trip was shortly planned a few days ago while we were chit-chatting at Bunny Coffee Shop. He wanted me to spend one night with nature. A place can help me leave all the mess, rush, and pressure behind. I believe him and agreed to go up there with him and his team.

20.11.2022, 7 a.m

I took a Grab bike to travel a distance of nearly 12 km from my house to the pick-up point. I arrived on time but he and his team came a few minutes later. Standing under a veranda to shelter from the drizzle in the morning, I played my favorite songs and watched people passing by. I had a deep breath in and out. Then, I immediately whispered to myself that Derek- you were still alive. I could feel the tranquility, smell the fresh air in the breeze and recognize the unification of soul and body. Dozens of questions came up in my mind like: How long have you been living like a zombie? Why did you allow your work to consume you? Do you know what “Life” and ” To Live” actually mean to you? … Suddenly, my bro and his team came and called me. They gave me the signal to walk to the car and get in. My trip started, but the questions were still there, somewhere in my mind!

20.11.2022, 11:30 a.m 

Finally, we arrived in Bao Loc – it is one of two districts of Lam Dong province in the South Central Highland Region. According to some research, Bao Loc is seen as a hidden gem of Lam Dong province thanks to its own charm. Bao Loc is also an excellent destination for a weekend getaway. Compared to Da Lat, Bao Loc is with the advantages of climate and an integrated economic potential thanks to its geographical location. If you are looking for a place to immerse yourself in pristine nature without being overcrowded with tourists like Da Lat, Bao Loc should be on your checklist.

20.11.2022, 1:30 p.m

After having lunch at Bach Hy An restaurant, we headed to Dai Binh mountain to start hiking. If you have a chance, try this 7.6 km out-and-back trail which is considered a moderately challenging route. As I mentioned before, you will be able to immerse yourself in pristine nature, you’ll unlikely encounter many other people while exploring.


After walking for nearly 1.8 km to reach the foot of the Mountain, in front of me at that moment there is an existence of a high ramp. I took a deep breath and made some first steps up. Honestly, I am not a guy who is really fond of hiking or trekking. I started sweating, I could feel my heavy footsteps and the gravity force pulling me back after every single step of mine. My body was leaning forward and I nearly bent my head down. I felt like I was going to fall. Suddenly, the voice of the young man on my team called out – “Let’s walk in zig and zag and never lose trail!”. I heard his instruction and strictly followed his words. It was so magical – everything seemed easier at that time and my sweat was gradually replaced with more smiles. However, after 15 minutes of walking in that mode, I turned my back and walked backward. With my method, I felt easier to get what I wanted at that time. Anyway, I couldn’t see what I would encounter because I didn’t have any eyes on my neck. If I want to follow my own way, I have to turn my head back and forth. Oh my god! It was so crazy, but I was happy with it. Anyway, all the ways I did and tried taught me well about Life Challenges.

  • The ramp is like my life path, sometimes it is moderately challenging.

  • Without any experience, I just follow my gut and try hard. Anyway, I might fail because of my poor strategy.

  • To learn to conquer new challenges, I am supposed to listen to experienced ones and follow their instructions. Try first, feedback then, and innovate afterward.


During my journey, I had “a personal photographer” going with me. He had never used a camera before. He told me that he liked it very much but he couldn’t afford one for himself. My camera is not a stunning one compared to the more professional ones in the market. I gave him my camera and told him to take the best photos of me.  Then, you can guess what was going on. I changed hundreds of poses and moved from one corner to another corner along the hiking path. I couldn’t count how many times he clicked on the camera button. In the beginning, he struggled with using the camera with many functions coming along. I just showed him how to use it basically and let him do further exploration by himself.

“Just play with it, you can do it.” – I honestly encouraged that young man.

Then, everything seemed to go smoothly and after every single shot, he ran to me, showed me his work, and asked for feedback. Little by little, he absorbed all my guidance. He helped me capture the moments of DEREK and picturesque nature. Thank you the young man. Thank you for being patient with me, thank you for believing in me and following my words. Thank you for not giving up on your new things.

Here below are what I told him

  • There are a lot of beautiful things in front of us. However, we cannot put all of them in one frame. Your picture will fail because of lacking focus.

  • Can you guess what it is? – Yeah, it’s the close-up photo of a white hairy worm. Sometimes, you need to see things from a very near distance to feel and see their beauty in detail.

  • You looked excited huh! Can you spot the differences between a good and a bad photo? It requires quite many factors but the most important thing is the angle of the camera. Your photos are more and more eye-catching because you know how to choose the angle. Likewise, living your life is like you are taking a photo; it is positive or negative thanks to your angle of view. Agree?


20.11.2022, 4:30 p.m

Finally, we reached our destination. We were standing on the top of the mountain and looking down on the city. What a magnificent panoramic view!  “Oh my god” was what I could shout out at that moment. I gave “A WHOA” not only because of the picturesque view but also the long path I already conquered. I never believed that I could make it. I spent 3 hours walking and hiking up the mountain, truly living and enjoying every moment of my life. All the mess, rush, and pressure was left at the foot of the mountain. Time to Live and Back to nature!

  • I turned to the young man and shared my feeling: “I usually choose the best place to sit and look back at what I already did. First, I need to withdraw a lesson. Second, I need to adjust my upcoming life design. The best part is to connect the past, the present, and the future!”

  • Do not forget to take a sip of your favorite drink and enjoy.

  • Remember to let nature boost your creativity and be a valuable form of soul therapy.

    “Last but not least, heal your soul and unseal your potential. You never how strong you are until you give  yourself a chance.”

A Quick Capture of The Trip 

(SomDam Land – Heal The Soul Glamping)

– Diary of Derek from SaigonTimeZ-


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