My Celebrity Doctor 👩‍⚕️

Why would a doctor need a fancy photo-shooting at a five star resort? For fun? For her own interest? For her personal branding? Who else does she want to be?

On a not-so-beautiful day of May 2020 for me because the tourism and hotel industry has got the largest hit of the century due to the destruction of the corona pandemic, I received an influencer-cooperation request for a photo shooting project at TUI BLUE Nam Hoi An from my favorite make-up artist cum producer Kyo Phan. I would love to work with him of course then I asked if he could send me a detailed program of the cooperation for my own review. We had worked before on different projects with professional models or people who work in the entertainment industry. But this time, it’s not really about a model, not even an actress or a singer. He said it was about Kha Le, a businesswoman and an entrepreneur. Oh what? I think I missed something, she is also a doctor, a dentist to be exact. But why would she need such a fancy photo-shooting in such a five star resort?

I was like why? Why would a doctor need to have a fancy photo-shooting in a five star resort? For fun because she’s rich? Maybe? Or for her own personal branding? Perhaps she’s working on a project? Maybe…

So I did a bit of homework and googled her name. I didn’t have to wait long, a number of articles came up. Of course I would be able to tell which article is paid on commercial and marketing purpose and which one is not. But I do see something different. This woman has really made an effort with her personal branding. Here are some of my findings:

“For a woman, fashion is a joy” (Image: GlobalWoman.vn)

Then on a beautiful summer evening in Hanoi, I finally had a chance to meet with Dr Kha Le, after spending a few days of doing my own research about her and her brand TrendSmile also.

My first impression? She’s an elegant and a beautiful woman yet very friendly and quite easy to talk with. Just like how I was convinced by the way she carried herself, I guess she would do a great job to make her client trust and love her as long as they get to see her. I like her more in the daily life or even when she’s in a uniform. No matter what she says or what people say, she’s a doctor after all. And it takes years and brainwork, lots of brainwork to be a doctor. But here’s even a beautiful female doctor, there’s a difference, too👩‍⚕️

Dr Kha Le and her selfie – This picture is posted with permission 😇

“I am a woman after all, apart from being a doctor and a wife and a mother. I think it’s important that I have time to enjoy life. I have seen my female class-mates from university. Although many of us ended up becoming dentists, and then becoming wives and mothers of their children, but many are doctor – doctors by own means. They get stuck in their uniforms the whole time. Some of them even seem to look older than their age and tired. But of course they do look like doctors in the world that is defined for us with lots of ethical standards and sacrifices”, Kha Le said. Then she continued: “But I want more, I want to enjoy life, I am a doctor but I am a woman also. I want to feel beautiful and look beautiful. I believe we should never put a limit on ourselves, you can still be a doctor and a beautiful woman at the same time”. I am not sure about you, whoever might be reading this, whether you are a man or a woman, but I personally adore the type of woman who has her own interests and simply knows how to inspire other people even with a small act of her daily selfie as a way of saying hello to the world 🤳

Yes I do like her selfie too ☺️

Then it came to my turn to ask “So what do you want to do from now?”, looking at Dr Kha Le as she was about to share more.

“I’ve started Trend Smile for more than 3 years now. It’s not been easy but I think we’ve got some very first encouraging successes. I want to live a happy life and bring happiness to people by helping them to design the best possible smiles. Some people are simply not lucky enough to have a good smile to start with. But I always believe having a good smile can change someone’s life”.

At some point I am glad that I have met her. Although I am actually not a big fan of all these beautiful stuff. I called it beautiful stuff because I really don’t spend lots of effort of searching the definition of “the best smile” or “the best beauty smile” or whatever. But this doctor has convinced me that she’s really been trying to make a difference, even if it only started by becoming a beautiful and successful doctor who is good at inspiring people around her.

This Trend Smile brand is another interesting story. I was quite fond of the design of the logo to be honest, although I need to admit that I do not know much about design. But it looks clean, fresh and quite modern for me. Maybe it’s just my own opinion because I am a fan of minimalism. Unlike other dentist clinics who often use the drawing of a “tooth” to design their logos, Trend Smile’s logo was inspired by the idea of a circle hugging and protecting a human body. The logo was created with the belief that when you know how to take care of your dental health, you know how to care of your own body and soul.

Vietnamese idiom has this saying “Cái răng, cái tóc là góc con người”. It means the teeth and head-hair are considered as human figure, which gives the meaning to the most important parts of human appearance”.

I have asked a few designers for what they think about this logo. They said, for a dental brand, they would prefer something shaper as it shows professionalism and accuracy.

I came to her dental place in Hanoi at 255 Pho Hue, I was also informed that she has another address in District 7 in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) since she knew that I live in Ho Chi Minh City now. My impression? I felt at ease, no stress because the design of the clinic and arrangement made us feel calm. I did some easy dental cleaning so it was not much of a big deal, but it was a totally a smooth process, it can be compared to the feeling of entering a Spa. The team including the doctors was very gentle, polite but still looking sharp and professional. I would definitely come back perhaps because of the dentists here who really have made me feel comfortable and safe ☺️

So that is it. Kha Le is becoming more and more admirable in her own way. I called her a “celebrity” doctor to hope that she will make her dreams come true. Be a successful and beautiful doctor, with a style! Let me share with you some beautiful pictures of hers taken at TUI BLUE Nam Hoi An. Looking at these images, I think I need to ask her to show her work license to prove that she is a real doctor, simply because she is too gorgeous to be a normal one. Thanks God she’s not normal and that makes her very special👩‍⚕️

I wish all women in the world would be able to find success, love and happiness no matter what they do. And the sky is not even the limit if you believe that so. Cheers to better days to come! 🍸

Try everything, keep the best!

I have recently decided that every time I see something good or someone who has done something that I found meaningful, I will make a record out of it. Either to give them a recommendation on Social Media or at least to write a blog post or to tell the story to related people that I know just to show my appreciation.

I first met this brother – Kyo Phan about 2 years ago when I was in charge of the Sales and Marketing activities for Legacy Yen Tu – MGallery. He was the make-up artist in the first photo-shooting project which I had the chance to take care of. He didn’t really have chance to talk much as was mainly for him to listen to me and to what other people had to say. We added each other on Facebook, occasionally “Like” and “Comment” to each other’s post but hardly ever talked, maybe once or twice because there was actually no reason to do so. We barely knew each other. I remember that one time I told him that I had a job change to Hoi An area.

About a month after, he contacted me and see if we could have a chance to work on another shooting, this time at TUI BLUE Nam Hoi An, the new resort where I am currently assigned to work. I would love to say yes but the resort was not ready, I referred his proposal to another sister property in the area so that he could still get the work done. Then he said, whenever I need something regarding make-up or taking profile pictures I would need to let him know. I thought it was kind for him to say so but didn’t really care much at that moment.

I guess about 2 months after we finally had the chance to meet again when I was back in Hanoi for my business trip, we met up over a nice dinner at Ming Restaurant of the Pan Pacific Hanoi. He wanted to introduce me to the lead model in one of his recent projects – Dr Kha Le from Trend Smile. And the moment he introduced my name and how we met, I was stunned. He said I was the one who took care of him so well in one of the best shootings that he has ever done. Because of me taking time to introduce to him everything about the Legacy Yen Tu, from the pottery and the meaning of the rice-husk wall so he remembered and the crew was able to capture the best shoots of the property and models.

Then we kept talking the entire evening and ended up having a nice drink at Angelina’s of the Sofitel Legend Metropole. He reminded me that we needed to do a shooting for me so we decided to do in a few days after. And here are the results:

This is the most like-able picture of the entire album. I do not know why people like it so much ☺️
For this picture to be done, it took me no less than 30 times passing the road ☺️
I think I actually look more like an actress in this picture.
Another “celebrity” moment ☺️
I don’t know how they were able to capture this look…
And this too ☺️
I think it’s kind of fun to do this once in a while ☺️

And only once in a while should be enough I guess. But the experience was worthwhile as I do believe that I had the chance to work with one of the best teams in the make-up and styling industry in Vietnam. Kyo Phan is definitely a genuine, fun and talented make-up artist. I was also blessed to know Duc Nhat, his hair stylish and especially Ms Mai Giang who did a great styling job for me on the shooting day. She was so gentle and caring and so humble for her own tittle as Vietnam’s Next Top Model 2012. I guess the next level of maturity when you know how to stop taking yourself too seriously.

Here are two of my favorite people: Mai Giang (Left) – Vietnam’s Next Top Model 2012 & Kyo Phan (Right) – The super talented make-up Artist 🤗

He is also a fashionista and a great model, too 😇

Dimples

There are certain things in life that you think you can not explain… Perhaps you will know it later but maybe you don’t want to know. Sometimes you simply don’t want to get to know too deep or too much of anything in order to keep its beauty…

I’ve got to know a lady for, let’s say… 12 days and I can’t help thinking of her with lots of admiration and curiosity at the same time…

I’m trying to picture a 33 years old woman, who is the single mother of 2 kids… But that’s not what I’m talking about… She had got married when she was 20 and divorced 5 years later…

She had lived 3 years in Singapore where she worked for the world’s largest networking and marketing organization but doesn’t speak a fluent sentence of English… And as a Vietnamese to Vietnamese I could easily pin point some of her pronunciation mistakes that she often makes…

Then I wonder how could she become who she is today? She has her own business, her own house, her own car with her own driver… She does seem to own a lot of things and I have no doubt that she knows a lot of people too…

But and can’t seem to connect these dots no matter how hard I am trying to connect them. Perhaps, as we get closer, I will understand about her little more about this woman but for now, it’s all good things…

When I can’t think of a good reason to explain her success in life, I am thinking of the sparkles in her eyes while talking to her about anything in life – work or random things. Just be very careful because even though I know I am a 100% straight woman, it is still easy to get lost, either in her pretty eyes or her adoring smile with charming dimples on her cheeks, which I must say, one of the sweetest smile that I have ever seen in my life…

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Life is Magnifique in Hanoi

life isNot too long ago I was in my 20-something crisis. I knew I was. I saw negative sides of things that I encountered on a daily basis with the highest level of disappointment I can get… I found nothing interesting in anything or anybody. That sounded so bad wasn’t that?

I walked along the rainy streets and I knew I had to make a phone call to a friend. 15 minutes later we got settled in one of the coffee shops near by. I asked if he could tell me the truth of how miserable I looked at that time… He was like ‘yeah yeah’ like it doesn’t even matter…and of course the fact that he did not show any sympathies to me at all made me a little angry… Then I decided to stop talking about myself. I saw the sparkles in his eyes and could not help wonder how he had been. I asked why he could be so happy. The answer was quite simple. He said he was happy because he loved all the things that he had been doing… Wasn’t that good?

But still, facing the fact that only him feeling good so it did not make me feel any better. I looked out the window and sighed: “Can you please tell me when this rain’s going to stop? I am so sick of this weather…” I said, with knowing that my friend might have been fed up with me already for ‘un-intentionally’ trying to turning him down… “I am so tired of this city. It’s always either too hot or too cold. And did you notice? The foggy and rainy weather has been like this for 1/4 of the year…” I continued.

Then he began – I think I only waited for this moment to hear his feedback. Because I know this guy will he super direct and straight to my problems.

“What’s happening with you?” He asked. “Are you trying to tell me that I am not acting like who I am? Like a normal me right?” I answered.

“Can’t be truer than that”. He laughed sneakily. I questioned him back: “Hey, I knew you also have a hundred things going on at the same time and you also changed your job last year… Don’t tell me it’s been a smooth process….!?”.

“Of course not… You had no idea how bored and disappointed I was when I had to quit the job. During my last few days at the office, apart from the day-to-day activities that we all have to accomplish, I had done something that I thought it was abnormal. I read through a 500 pages long book about Vietnamese history and now I feel like I have a new profession…”.

We laughed until his face looked a bit more serious again… “I think you should stop looking at the dark sides of everything. Of course you can leave if you don’t like this city anymore but you know more than anyone that there are goods and bads everywhere. Why don’t you look at this city to see our advantage of having seasonality? Other cities in Southeast Asia do not have that and they missed the opportunities to sell seasonal products and services…”.

“Okay!” I smiled and that’s when he knew that he made a clear point to me…

We kept the talking for another 15 minutes later before we greeted goodbye. 3 months later, I called him back and asked how he was doing… I know this is the man that I should be thankful for having him as a friend. And now, talking about seasonality, if you think Hanoi is the only capital city in Southeast Asia that has 4 seasons then it’s time to think again. We don’t just have 4 seasons, we have 12 flower seasons. I brought this idea for an internal presentation at work and received a number of good feedback… Let’s just forget about brand standards for now… I am just in love with the thought of me re-starting to have more of original ideas and finally get back to be my-authentic-self…

Vanity of Vanities

thuxanhthuxanh

thu

I’ve got to know this little sister for less than a year since I had received a as a marketing intern. Yeah I knew it from the very beginning while looking at her profile that she is very into art & design. It didn’t take me long to realise the artistic side of hers, apart from her artistic look – just like her own drawing in the above picture, she is a little bit of vain – just like me – and full of vanity – But I am a little less – oh no, so much less of vanity than she is.

The thing is she knew it too well and she seems to enjoy very much of her own little world, which used to drive me crazy and make me worry for her at the same time. She looks so damn cool and strong from the outer but a little shy and fragile kitty is all I can see through… But then I realised, I shouldn’t have worried for her at all. Why should I? In fact, during the time that I’ve got to know her, I’ve kind of having had enough troubles on my own. She’s happy isn’t that enough?

Congratulations on getting another piece of vanity done. I know you’ve worked hard for it. Wishing you all the best in life and lots of vanity in your crazy little Thu Xanh’s Blog 🙂

Love you heaps xx

I already smiled.

me

Few days ago:

Boy: Hey, I’ve got you a present.

Girl: Thanks, what’s that?

Boy: I will not tell you until I see you again and I will give it to you.

Girl: Okay 🙂

Today:

Boy: Hey, are you there?

Girl: Yup?

Boy: Do you remember I said I had a present for you?

Girl: Yes?

Boy: It doesn’t exist anymore.

Girl: Really? Was it food? Did it get expired?

Boy: No 😦 Actually it was a stone. I found it on the street while the kids were playing. Then I took it home and worked on it to make you a present. But today I dropped it and it was broken.

Girl: Don’t worry. It was so nice of you already. Thank you so much.

Boy: But I just wanted to see you smile when you see it.

Girl: I’ve already smiled.

Namaste

I know this is just the beginning of 2015 but I’ve just had one of my best moments of the year catching up with some amazing friends and people, this includes the Sajus…

I met Saju in back in 2010 when we were at the Hyatt Hotel Canberra. He was ‘the Chef’ and I worked in Food and Beverage as well as Sales and Marketing department. Except for the fact that he is Indian and he cannot swim – he admitted in front of everybody when we were playing the ‘Who’s Who game’ at the hotel – we knew nothing about each other until we both came back to Vietnam…

In 2012, he got a job promotion at a five star hotel in Saigon and by that time I also left Australia for home in Hanoi. I took the occasion to meet my old colleguage again in one of my trips to Saigon and got to know his family, his beautiful Croatian wife Mirjana and his gorgeous daughter plus personal assistant Kylie.

We met again in Hanoi yesterday and the day before as they went for a trip in Hanoi and Ha Long Bay. Oh my god, Kylie surprised me as she is a lot taller than she was before… Kylie loves winter so she seemed to enjoy it very much. However, the Hanoi weather has not been very pleasant as we’ve been experiencing to the extreme of the unpleasant days with cold wind air and too much of winter rain.

I enjoyed my time spending with them as well to get to know the ‘insights’ of how it’s like to get married with a Chef and got to know a bit of here and there… Europe, India, Australia and Vietnam… We literally include almost everything in our conversions and sometimes they even went up into becoming some ‘big’ husband & wife arguments but I guess this is just how life’s supposed to be. Mirjana was like: “Camellia, don’t get married and don’t have kids”. I just can’t help smiling looking at how happy they are and I could not see anything which is more lively and more beautiful than that…

I had one of the best Indian meals in my life at Namaste Restaurant in Hanoi… I just tried everything that I was advised by ‘the Chef’ and they were all so good.

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It must have been not so difficult for Indians to become vegetarians they have such a wide variety of choices when it comes to vegetarian or vegan food. I told the family that I wanted to become a vegetarian. Just got this feeling recently… And perhaps 80% vegetarian is a better target as it is not easy to be a vegetarian when you are part of the food and service industry and especially when you live in the society where people show absolutely no respect for animals as many of them still think dog meat is a type of food to eat…

Despite of the cold and rain, the Hanoi trip was good for us, I still feel like I am a ‘tourist’ sometimes – it happens when you travel with people coming from different cultures who look at your culture in a different perspective…

Life is full of coincidences. And I think I must have made Mirjana super happy as well. She might probably thought that she was the only Croatian in Vietnam. We were walking along Nha Tho street where the St Joeseph’s is and I suddenly realised that I knew someone also from Croatia who lives in Hanoi. Coincidentally, they were all at the same place at a perfect timing and just good enough for me to get everyone from the small little Croatian ‘community’ to get introduced to each other in a short period of time. Mirjana was so happy that she couldn’t speak a word after the encounter with not only one Croatian guy but also another one and another guy who is Croatian’ son-in-law. She asked me as if I knew everyone in this city which just made me smile… I took a step back to think of another coincidence, it was about an Austrian man who I’ve got to know for quite some time and once we went for dinner together at Da Paolo Westlake, he was so surprised that he could hear the ‘Austrian’ sound from another man who was dining in the table right next to us…

I said to the Chef: “Hey Saju, I think just maybe, if someone thinks he/she is the only person who has ‘unique’ nationality in this city, they should come and see me as I will be able to help them find a friend who comes from their own state of origin…”