“After high school, my mother gave me two options- to pursue hotel management or to marry the man she had chosen for me. Despite never having truly known what I wanted, I had concluded that I wanted to study animation. But my mother’s conditions were final. So, I packed my bags overnight and flew to the college of her choice to study. My mother seemed happy but I was not. The uncertainty of what I wanted from life still loomed over me. For months, I struggled to adjust to the new environment. I had difficulty communicating and making friends. As for the trade I was there to learn, I was doing okay.

Slowly I found my salvation in it. I chose mixology as my major just because it seemed cool and was also easier to learn. Mixology is the art of mixing various drinks and ingredients to create cocktails. As I learnt and practiced, it started feeling right. It was effortless and didn’t demand much of me. I started working as a part-time bartender and learned to make drinks of my own too. When I finished my studies, one of the best hotels hired me as a bartender during a campus selection. They polished my skills such that I was sponsored to go to Oman to run a newly opened bar. It was only then that I realised my mother had shown me the path I’d been searching for.

I run a bar now, while training budding mixologists on the side. I try and learn new skills to enhance my career, everyday. Over the years, I’ve gotten to work in several countries. This has given me confidence and has helped explore my own potential to learn and do new things. Although it came in a manner I didn’t like at the time, my mother’s advice somehow guided me in the right direction. The road was not smooth but as time passed, I was able to find my happiness and talent in this path. I am glad I chose this journey.”

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