Friday, February 27, 2009

new year resolutions, a little late

...but better late than never, right?

1. I shall not let other people's emotions affect my own.
Because people cannot make me feel a certain way unless I allow them to. Eleanor Roosevelt put it this way: "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent." I will not be irritated when someone irritates me; I will not feel angry when someone does something to make me; I will choose to be happy every single day. Yeah right.

2. I shall not worry about 'what people think of me'.
People's lives do not revolve around me. They have their own issues, their own insecurities, their own troubles. No one probably cares if I say something stupid, or fall down in front of the class. I shall not fret even when I realise my mascara is smudged or my face is oily and I was talking to a cute guy without knowing that I look like a racoon who fell into an oil tank. Life is too precious to be wasted on thinking "what do people think of me?" Because, more often than not, they don't even think about you. Really.

3. I shall do my best and leave the rest to Him.
There is only so much I can study and do in a limited amount of time. If I have given my best I shall have no regrets, and I can face Him with dignity, rest assured that I have not let Him down, even if my EOS results suck like a vacuum.

4. I shall stop harping on my body and weight issues.
If I exercise regularly and eat healthily, and my thighs still resemble tree trunks and my belly a balloon, I shall still be happy and not complain incessantly to my poor housemate. And to anyone else who would listen. I will think of myself as beautiful, even if I don't have large Bambi eyes, Elizabeth Taylor's arched nose, and Gisele Bundchen's body.

5. I shall praise more and criticize less.
Because no one likes to be criticized, and who doesn't love people who appreciate them? Of course I will not praise for the sake of praising. I shall learn to see the good in others, and less of their faults. Because for every fault that one has, there are ten more good points in them. So wouldn't it be easier for me to spot those ten rather than the one measly (and perhaps unimportant) fault?

6. I shall stop worrying so much about my 'popularity'.
Because I cannot expect everyone to love me to bits. Because I know I have a 'fierce' face. Because I don't make funny jokes when in company. So I cannot expect to be popular like those who do all of the above. But I will still be happy because I have a bunch of great friends who love me for who I am.

7. I shall make my own decisions.
And not be influenced by others. Because I am my own master. Or mistress.

8. I shall stop complaining about not having a boyfriend.
Or better, I shall stop trying to find a boyfriend. 是你的,就是你的。勉强没幸福。

9. I shall sleep early and rise early.
I have recently started to love mornings more. The fresh cool morning air, the chirp of birds. And the sight of old ladies doing taichi in front of Vista B1 makes me happy. Besides, I'll never have to worry about not waking up in time if I wake early, right?

10. I shall be happy.
Enough said.

Difficult enough, I daresay? But certainly not unattainable. Because there is no 'perfect' world, only an ideal one. And it is up to us to create our own ideal world, and not anyone else. Not our friends, not our boyfriends (or girlfriends), not our parents, not our EOS results. Just ourselves.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Of scents and memories

So I was reading this book about emotional intelligence, which mentioned that certain traumatic events become imprinted on our cells, and if we ever come across a trigger that resembles that disturbing event we get the same flood of physiological and emotional responses.

Fortunately I have yet to come across such traumatic situations, but I can vouch for the fact that certain scents can trigger specific memories. It happens to me all the time.

Mostly, these scents comprise perfumes I own, but of course there are some others too.

For instance, the smell of Johnson's Baby Bedtime Bath (the one with the purple bottle) floods me with memories of my National Service days. It was the only shower gel I used throughout the 3 months I spent there. I think about the days where I have to lug a huge pail, filled with water from the common kolam, into one of the toilets with cement floors and walls to bath. The carrying of the super heavy pail probably wreaked havoc on my spine and arm muscles, but I didn't much like to bath at the kolam. Open as I was, bathing in a group still made me feel a little uncomfortable. There was another time, as I rushed to the bathroom as soon as I came back from a sweaty kawat session to shower, I heard a voice blast over the loudspeakers telling, demanding us, to berkumpul at the common hall AT ONCE! If not, the trainers will personally come to drag us out! (*repeat many times, with increasing intensity and volume. I never knew why military people like to shout so much.*) And I was in my birthday suit, all wet and soapy! Only God knows how flustered and nervous I was as I rushed to finish showering and rush to the hall at once. And I was just in time, for the trainers bolted and locked all the doors to the hall, trapping us inside. I learnt afterwards that they wanted to check all our bags in our absence as someone had lost something, I can't remember what it was. To think how many brain cells were killed when I zoomed at top speed from the bathhouse to my tent (to dump my clothes and bath things) and then to the hall. Sweat!

The Body Shop's Oceanus reminds me of my Hong Kong trip, it was the only fragrance I wore throughout the whole journey. When I put it on again, I am transported back to those lovely days, especially of the day when I stood at the Victoria harbour gawking at the Symphony of Lights. I remember the cool breeze that blew after the misty rain, and how the seats were wet and I had to stand throughout the concert. And I remember too that it was the first day of my period, so it was difficult for me to stand for such a long time. I'm sometimes surprised at how minutely I am able to remember events!...but sadly not drug names or their mechanisms.

Another fragrance from The Body Shop is the Beleaf scent, which I wore all through my INTEC days. I see myself in my punggung-tutup-ing jacket and jeans, and relive the moments when we had to rush and pek for the bus which came oh-so-infrequently. Those days brought with them their fair share of memories, the friends I had, and the seemingly difficult days where study made up the bulk of our days and everything else was sidelined. I remember the happy days more vividly than the rest, like how much fun we had preparing for the Merchant of Venice play, how I got UTI right before my badminton match (and thought it was appendicitis, silly me), and of course the friendships sealed in the boundaries of that dreaded place we called home for 2 full years.

My BCBG Nature fragrance makes me think of exams, because that is the only scent I wear to those horrid events. I think of it as my 'lucky' scent, since I won that fragrance in a magazine contest. Somehow it gives me the confidence I need to face my exams, and puts me in the mood to concentrate on my papers. At one point I wore it to school to increase my chances of meeting my crush, and somehow I do always seem to bump into him when I wear that scent! =P Whether it really makes me luckier, I don't's probably a placebo effect, but hey if it works, why not?


And that is enough reminiscing for a day.

I know I have committed a major criminal offence by failing to update for 3 weeks. 3 weeks! Oh dear. If I were getting revenues from my blog, I would probably have people exploding at me and threatening me to f***ing blog or else they'll chop off my head or something. Actually I'm somewhat confused..and a little flattered, truth be told. Even with my extremely long blogging hiatus, there're still more than a hundred good souls trawling this site each week. Which makes me feel guilty for disappointing all of you, all this while. I have somehow fallen into a comfortable lull of not writing, even though my days aren't really that busy. I suppose the lack of blog-able topics is partly to blame, nothing really interesting happens in my life nowadays. But I'm not complaining. It feels good to wake up and slowly unfurl myself from the bedsheets, rest assured that nothing out of the ordinary is going to happen today. To me, it's a luxury to have everything go according to plan, and it feels good. It gives me a sense of security.

Actually I have a few plots for short stories in my head these past few weeks, but I just have been too lazy to put these plots to print. And the other (ambitious) side of me is telling me to not blog these stories cos I won't be able to publish them in my (currently fictitious) novel in the future. Yeah right, as if anyone would want to pay money to buy stories that came out of my brain! The very idea seems impossible...but I have been toying with the idea of writing my own book ever since I was 18, I even started a novel during my 8 months' break but somehow never got beyond the first chapter. Proof of my extreme indolence when no deadlines are due!

Ooh. That's a lot of words for a post. I shall call it a day.

Good luck to all my batchmates for next monday's test!

Till then,


Sunday, February 1, 2009

CNY musings

The chinese new year is not a time for me. It never was.

As a kid, I never enjoyed CNY, not even the angpau part. Somehow I always felt more embarrased than happy when receiving angpaus, though now I am better able to appreciate them, in light of the recession. Not because I'd have more money to spend, but because I am thankful for their well-wishes that come with the little red packet, and thankful for the angpau givers, that they are still able to afford giving out angpaus in these hard times. I feel relieved that my relatives and my parents' friends are still doing reasonably well to be able to afford CNY. I've heard of worse.

Cloudy, rainy days always makes me emo.
And today, chor chat, is a cloudy day in Vista.

I am emo-ing because my parents have just left me in Vista to return to Ipoh. I'm already missing them and they have only just left! That's why I don't like going home. Cos I always feel like shit when I have to come back to KL. I feel like I've been dug up, roots and all, literally. I feel sad. I feel like crying. Or maybe I'm pms-ing. I don't know.

I am emo-ing because it is becoming clearer that time is ticking. Fast. My uncles and aunts are growing older and my cousins are already holding their firstborns in their arms. Another cousin almost my age is getting married soon. My kiddy cousins are already in secondary school. One of my relatives just passed on. I didn't get to meet my closest cousin this CNY cos she's in Leeds this year. Everyone and everything is changing so fast I can't even keep up! I'm overwhelmed by the changes that are happening, whatever happened to those good old days?

*to digress a little: I really admire my cousin, one of the two who gave birth last year. She and her husband were a couple since their high school days and they have been going out for what, 10 years? I think she's around 26 or 27 this year. She was his first love, and he her first. I love it that they are still so much in love even after so many years of being together. I have always envied couples that started when they were still in school, it feels so much more innocent that way. They are not concerned about how much money their partner makes, how big their partner's car or house is, and how high their position in the company. It's like, they're together simply because they love each other. They're there because they want to be there. Not that I'd only accept a CEO for a future husband, but I feel somehow as we grow older, the innocence that once was, gets lost in the churn of our daily lives, one way or other. If you met someone in school that you could really consider your soulmate, as I see it, you probably can consider it equivalent to striking the lottery, 10 times over.

And of course, I'm emo-ing because I have gained 1kg over CNY! Dang!


Alright then, lest you become emo after reading all that, here's a little something from our CNY conversations that got stuck in my head. If you can, read this out loud, it sounds better that way.



Enjoy the remaining 8 days of CNY peeps! =)