Archives for category: Stories from everywhere


It is very true when they say that if you can drive in Ho Chi Minh, you can drive anywhere in the world. It is also true that crossing the road here is an art that must be perfected by tiger courage aided by a can of 333 Bia.

But for all the mad bustle on the roads (and the incessant and needless honking), I find that the Vietnamese people have a very quiet, gentle air about them. They sit on the side streets people-watching, chatting to each other in a sing-song lilt, smiling shyly when you catch their gaze. It’s a contradictory city, quite like Bangkok. I suspect that might be why I like it so much.














An inordinate amount of time has passed since we left Raffles Junior College and I’ve been nursing the urge to revisit Ghim Moh and Holland Village for a while. I think it’s got a lot to do with having been away in London for the last two years and the indelible quarter-life crisis we’re all facing now.

So we got all nostalgic, pointing out the old food haunts that we ate at every single day when we were 17, mourning the joints that are no longer there. We talked and laughed about climbing school gates, the crazy things we used to do in our container classrooms, exceptionally goofy incidents that have (unfortunately for the perpetuators in question) gone down in history… But beneath it all, I felt a strange pang of sadness I couldn’t quite explain. It’s like a part of our lives that we desperately want to get back, a harkening to simpler days. But we can only look back at it all, in gentle retrospect, as best we can.

[Images via The Atlantic]

 

The resilience, courage and beauty of the Japanese people have emerged – whole – through the devastation.

You can contribute to the rescue efforts by making a donation to the Red Cross.

And remember to keep on praying for Japan.

 

 

 

GOLDSMITHS ’10

Did you hear? We threw them mortar boards up in the air, and we graduated.

 

 

 

Straight up, this is probably going to the most private thing I have ever written here. But I think these words are far too important to keep solely in the private pages of my journal. I wouldn’t say I learnt this the easy way, but I think things up in my misty mind finally did click for me. So here goes:

You know I used to think that power was everything in any relationship. And this power rested solely in the hands of the person who loved less, who was consequently given more, pandered to, and could walk away with nary a scratch if the relationship did end.

I succeeded in holding this power, through all the relationships I was in, romantic or platonic. I almost always had to have the last word; I was always the one they fought over; I was the one ready with all the cynicism in the world for one more bastard in history (mine or the girls’); I was the one with the strength and the mojo, so to speak.

This is what I have come to learn. Power doesn’t bring you happiness. Holding the knowledge that you love someone less isn’t going to make you wake up with the knowledge that you don’t want anyone else in the world sleeping beside you, but him. Loving less isn’t going to make all the little things count; loving less isn’t going to take you all the way to 49 or 94 together; loving less isn’t going to build an us, and it most certainly isn’t going to build a you.

He made me realize this. For the first time I didn’t care if he liked me more or I him. For the first time it didn’t matter if I was going to have the last word in a bout of verbal sparring. For the first time I didn’t need to fight to put my defences up and ensure I had an exit route that would leave me unscathed. I didn’t need to; he was more than enough even if he didn’t mean to be.

But you should know upfront, this is not a love story.



[Image via fuckyeahkikomizuhara]

GIRL CRUSH.
Oh Kiko, you lookin’ mighty fly.

JANUARY
Snow, which as usual, London couldn’t deal with. But which my very tropical mom was very thrilled about.




FEBRUARY
Chinese New Year brought dumplings and crazy costumes to Raymont Hall. And Candice to London.


MARCH
Back to St. Gallen for the first time in five years. And Zurich provided some much-needed sunny days.



APRIL
Some sunny respite: The calm before the essaywriting storm.


MAY
Essays x 5, Redbull cans x 90, Readings x ∞, Life x 0


JUNE
Back to sunny Singers for the World Cup (damn Paul) and Super Junior fangirling!



JULY
One more month with my nearest and dearest, with the shadow of the dissertation never far behind.



AUGUST
Back to London for dissertation hell. May in a repeat, with a non-existent supervisor (not my fault) and extremely last-minute cramming (entirely my fault).

SEPTEMBER
Farewells, birthdays, farewells.

OCTOBER
Goodbye London, Bonjour Montreal! This was easily the best decision I made all year.

NOVEMBER
Three weeks in Montreal became two months (the second-best decision I made all year). And we went to the concrete jungle where dreams are made of.




DECEMBER
Christmas back in London. No crazy cooking sesh or even crazier boxing day sales this time; just good company and lots of Home Alone guffaws.

 

It’s been a good ride.
I’m ready for 2011.

Bonne année à toi!

 

 

[Images via VisualizeUs]

 

I love text tattoos. There is something very surreal about permanently inking words to live by on skin. Faces change and weather so much with time, making portraits almost impossible to preserve in their purest essence. Symbols and objects are taken in and more often than not, swiftly forgotten. But words; words have the ability to transcend infinitely, wielding more mettle than any old sword could.

 

 

 

 

May all be calm
May all be bright
As on that silent holy night
And may the peace and love born then
– In every heart, be born again.

 

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

 


 

I guess Korean dinners and warm cups of peppermint latte make us more than a little loopy.

😀