More about tiff…

The photo in my header was taken (by me!) Cambodia in 2007, during my first months there.  This shows the bank of the Mekong, where it runs and meets with the Tonle Sap River along the city of Phnom Penh…a place that will always be near and dear to my heart.

Et moi?  Well, I suppose I should first tell you that I’m generally an excitable, kinda confused, easily distracted worrywart who loves things that are colourful, that pop!, that are extremes in emotions, tastes, smells and sounds.  And I simply love the colour red. There are of course, all the other things I love.

I love music, it’s probably the one thing that keeps me grounded. I feel like music is what feeds the soul and there is at least one song that can match whatever you’re feeling at any particular moment.  One of my favourite things is to have the perfect soundtrack playing on my iPod while I walk down a city street.

And I love food.  Growing up, my mom taught us all the basics of Cantonese food and made sure my sister, brother and I were always aware of what we were eating, what went into it, and the hard work getting that perfect texture or flavour entailed.  She also expanded our pallets and I will always be grateful for her for that.  From Malyasian curries on winter nights, to sushi for Xmas eve dinner, schnitzels and spicy Indian curries and everything under the sun.  I definitely credit my mom for my love of food.

And design…Well I was named Tiffany for a reason and I grew up with my mom’s interminable collection of Vogue September Issues that stretched from the 1970s that grew every year.  And that love for design not only stretched from fashion, but to architecture and all things that make life cool.  While I probably will never be able to make anything like Phillipe Starck or Proenza Schouler, I’m a definite appreciator; and a minimalist by design and a maximizer when it comes to everything else (colour, sound, boom!)

Movies….Well, here’s another namesake triumph.  The TIFF is my festival and Tiff is my name – how perfect, nah?  I’ve loved film since as long as I can remember.  It’s the perfect way to escape, to relate, to feel not alone.  Sitting in a dark movie theater is the best and only way to see a film in my opinion.  And my favourites? Well they are countless and I don’t think I will ever be able to specify any one film, actor, director or writer who I can ever devote myself completely to.

Health policy…is my trade.  I’ve always been a proponent that no one person should be denied health, yet hundreds of millions of people are every day.  And it’s not only about medicine, but the myriad of players – social, cultural, political, private, personal and profit – and drivers like education, housing and gender, which drive the current inequities we see around us.  And so what I seek to do in my career is to help governments and other players in developing countries make the best decisions to help people access and achieve health.

And finally – the wandering.  The past 5 years have taken me to at least 15 different countries and I really can’t stop collecting.  Growing up in the global mecca of Toronto introduced me to so many diverse cultures and I suppose that’s what eventually drove me out of my hometown.  I love discovering new things, meeting new and amazing people, and introducing me to new elements that continue to drive my interests in the factors above.

All of this I couldn’t discover without my amazing friends near and far, who have introduced me to so many amazing experiences that I can’t even begin to count.

And this is my way of accounting for all of them.  So let the blogging begin!


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