We’re back with our newest feature of Lark and Peony Interviews after a long break on the blog. For today’s feature, we have with us our lovely customer Geri Goh Escolar. A Singaporean who has lived abroad for 12 years now, Geri was back in Singapore a while ago to lecture at the National University and at the Aviation Academy, dressed in Lark and Peony pieces. Boy, were we both proud, yet humbled that our designs ended up at such purposeful events! Thank you for making our designs look so spectacular, Geri!
Geri at the Centre for International Law, National University of Singapore
Geri is in a Princess in Midnight Canary which is available by appointment only
Based in the Netherlands, Geri was the first Singaporean to work at the International Court of Justice, the United Nations’ highest court. She is now Legal Adviser to the President of the Iran-United States Claims Tribunal. Mama to a bouncing 16-month-old, Geri also teaches the law of armed conflict and international space law.
International law and space technology are fields in which Asian women are severely under-represented. Proud of her heritage as a Singaporean woman, Geri loves how the cheongsam epitomises confident, sophisticated femininity, and wears them as often as she can. Lark & Peony’s elegant pieces are perfect workwear even in more conservative occupations like the law! The Princess in Seigaiha, which Geri confesses is one of her favourite outfits, is flattering, timeless and quick to pull together – important considerations for a working mum!
Geri was invited to give the Aviation Insight Series lecture at the Singapore Aviation Academy this past September. Here she is, wearing the Princess in Seigaiha in Taupe, while lecturing about the exploration of outer space, human spaceflight, and space tourism. Cheongsams and space exploration – a winning combination!
Geri is in the Princess in Seigaiha - Taupe
We also got a little curious about what she does in a day at her very exciting job, and she shared with us a little about her life.
Hi Geri! Thanks for making time for us. Where are you now, why are you there, and what are you up to?
It’s an absolute pleasure to be speaking with you! I am based in The Hague, The Netherlands. I am the Legal Adviser to the President of the Iran-United States Claims Tribunal, the international arbitral tribunal established as part of the resolution to the hostage crisis at the U.S. Embassy in Tehran in 1979. The movie Argo explored some of the events during that crisis.
I moved to The Hague when I was appointed as a staff member at the International Court of Justice, the judicial organ of the United Nations. I was the principal legal officer in the Chambers of the judge from the United Kingdom. The Hague is known as the “International City of Peace and Justice”, and is the seat of many international courts and tribunals, so it is home to a community of lawyers specialising in international law.
We see from your pictures that you’re quite the thrill-seeker! What are some of your favourite sports?
I like sports that involve going someplace, so my favourite sports include sea canoeing, hiking and sailing. It’s actually all down to my husband’s influence – he’s the sporty, fit one who loves the great outdoors – his enthusiasm is very catching!
What is your ultimate quick pick-me-up in the middle of a tough day at work? A snack, a workout, listening to music – anything!
It depends on the day, really. Some days I’m required to be in court, which means that I just have to centre myself and get on with it, no matter how the day turns out to be. Other days I take 15-20 minutes and do some yoga in my office, or I try and get lunch with a good friend.
My husband and I pre-empt any tough days by starting the day right with a healthful, sit-down breakfast. And no matter how busy we are, if we are not travelling on business, we make sure to have a sit-down, homemade dinner with our little boy every weekday. I find our time at dinner together the best tonic to a difficult day. The thought of it perks me up no matter how the day is!
Your job must come with very high stress levels. How do you unwind over the weekends?
Unless there’s a critical deadline looming or a work-related crisis, I generally try to finish all my work for the week by Friday evening. Every weekend I make a plan for a special day out (museums, the aquarium, Christmas markets) if we aren’t having a weekend away (The Hague has a good many weekend-trip-worthy places within easy reach, or we visit with the grandparents in Barcelona). When we spend the weekend at home, I bake little treats for the week.
Thanks Geri! Now, could we get a little peek into your life and what you do throughout the workday?
6:30am: Wake up, get ready for work. Make breakfast with my husband. Baby wakes up at about 7am. (We are very fortunate, I know.) Baby gets his milk and then shares a sit-down breakfast with us. Get Baby ready for crèche.
8am: Leave home. Drop Baby off at crèche – he will blow me goodbye kisses and agree with great conviction that he will have a great day. Drive to the office. Check the plan for the day (or the week if it’s Monday; I schedule every item on my to-do list).
9am: Some days I’m in court at 9:30am, and might have to stay there till 6pm. Other days, I might be in meetings. If I am at my desk, I try to do all my drafting and writing in the morning, because that’s when I do my best creative work. I take two 15-minute breaks sometime in the morning for some yoga at my desk, or to read some news.
1pm: Break for lunch. If I’m in court, some work must get done at lunchtime. Otherwise, get some outdoor time or catch up with a friend over lunch.
2pm: Back at work. I try and deal with all email as soon as it comes in, but where the email requires a longer response, I deal with it the same day after lunch. Pick up bits and bobs of the workday. Make sure to finish up any work that must be done that day.
5:40pm: Leave the office to pick Baby up from crèche. My husband usually arrives at home when we do. Make dinner, have dinner, family time (including Baby’s bath). Baby has a book or three (or five), takes his milk and goes to bed at about 8:30pm, and then we clear up from dinnertime.
9pm: Finish up whatever work was left over or, if there is nothing pressing, get to work on the book I’m writing about international space law. Friday evenings are saved for one-on-one time with my husband, and for reading a non-work-related book.
*Geri is a paying customer at Lark and Peony, and has very kindly agreed to let us use these pictures of her.