The Proust Questionnaire | Jenny Chang

Jenny Chang The Lilac Road

1. What is your idea of perfect happiness?
I tried to answer this question in a straightforward way, but I realize that a lot of things constitute happiness for me: traveling the world with fun company along the way; talking, laughing and sharing good food with my best friends; lighting candles and unwinding with a great book and film; having movie nights in with my little sister; hiking in forests alone. The list can go on.

2. What is your greatest fear?
Having someone close to me die.

3. What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
I can be unforgiving.

4. What is the trait you most deplore in others?
Unkindness – any trait where people treat others badly.

5. Which living person do you most admire?
It changes from time to time, but a lot of the time it’s my mother for her strength and generosity and my best friends for constantly inspiring me with their hustle. Right now, I love Julie Delphy for her inspiring embodiment of what it means to be a witty, intelligent, feminine and vulnerable woman.

6. What is your greatest extravagance?
I have a slightly weird obsession with shoes and think you can never have enough, even though I only wear two pairs on rotation.

7. What is your current state of mind?
In a lot of peace because it feels like I am right where I belong.

8. What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
Love conquers and binds all, but sometimes love just isn’t enough.

9. On what occasion do you lie?
When I don’t want to go out with friends or when I’m late (which is rare!)

10. What do you most dislike about your appearance?
My crooked teeth.

11. Which living person do you most despise?
The president of Syria, Assad. And Trump.

12. What is the quality you most like in a man?
Emotional intelligence.

13. What is the quality you most like in a woman?

14. Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
Where did I put my phone?

15. What or who is the greatest love of your life?

Jenny of The Lilac Road in Angkor Camodia

16. When and where were you happiest?
When I was skydiving off a plane for my birthday last year.

17. Which talent would you most like to have?
The ability to surf. It seems like out in the water surfers experience a great sense of solitude, calm and beauty.

18. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
I would change myself to be a little less introverted. I can go full-on hermit and not see anyone for weeks and it can be isolating.

19. What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Raising money and awareness for abused children in Thailand & travelling the world solo.

20. If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be?
A whale. I believe they are my spirit animal.

21. Where would you most like to live?
Florence, Italy.

22. What is your most treasured possession?
I have this box full of memorabilia, letters and photos of friends that I pull out from time to time, especially when I feel sad. I treasure it with my life.

23. What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
Being caged in a meaningless existence with a mundane job and surface-level friendships.

24. What is your most marked characteristic?
My empathy.

25. What do you most value in your friends?
Their ability to bring out the best in me even when I fail to see it within myself.

26. Who are your favorite writers?
Ronald Dahl, Khaled Hosseini and Donald Miller.

27. What is your greatest regret?
Every “regret” I’ve had has given me a lot of wisdom in hindsight, so I don’t really have a significant regret.

28. How would you like to die?
Surrounded by my loved ones or in someone’s arms.

29. What is your motto?
Work hard and be kind, of course!

Images my own