On social media

PHOTO: GEM0816/INSTAGRAM

REAL CONNECTION: The clock was ticking towards her 28th birthday, but she did not receive any messages from her pals to wish her well. It was not that Hong Kong pop singer G.E.M. is now shunned. No one could reach her on Thursday because her phone was not working.

That nightmare was later detailed by G.E.M., who posted from her computer that she was at first despondent over the connection loss. But that disruption allowed her to connect - in a human way - with her family members at home. She noted that the closer bonding was a rare occurrence, which served only to remind her not to take them for granted.

In the past, she said she would be excited over the attention she would get at the stroke of midnight when her birthday kicked in, not realising that the occasion is also marked by people "right next to me".

G.E.M. added that she is now reminded that life is not only about finding the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. She said that when work consumes you, do you remember "who you started working so hard for and why?".

But her career has taken off though she reportedly has been in a dispute with her agency over her contract. In November last year, she was included in BBC's list of 100 inspiring and influential women from around the world.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 20, 2019, with the headline 'On social media'. Print Edition | Subscribe