Wednesday, October 04, 2006
funny thing is shopping did not do me in this time- i think the general populace must be fanatically shocked/proud of me, since all i bought were stomach fillers and a lacoste limited edition polo tee and there's that! i've signed my brand new visa at a grand tally of one, solitary time. yes you still have me, unflinching die-hard HK shopper, the most vocal advocate of HK shopping tourism, but this time i just couldn't bring myself to spending unnecessarily. and still yes, we're talking about ethan in HK, alice in wonderland and what allegory of me have you not in good ol' HK. but part of the reason is because i just needed the time to get my system up and running again for more partying, hence not much time allocated for shopping. within the span of 4 night-become-day days, i've been to Volar and Drop (the members' only clubs which S was so kind to saunter me in so carefreely), and the 2 rave parties which were downright diiirrrty, the way parties on a vacation should be anyway. dragged myself to meet family on Sunday for dim sum lunch and that was pure torture. i was still reeling from certain medicated effects plus alcohol and everything was a daze to me. my cantonese was in barely functional mode and all i really wanted to do over lunch was to plunge my head into the table in front of me. lucky the baked cheese cod fish rice, macau style was not too shabby. good food helps a tad even in the most desperate of moments.
wish i had photos of anything really but i only realised i didn't take anything when i was on board home. i guess that's indication enough of how much fun i had huh? and now as i cold storage my fun in the fridge of financial accounting, evidence and securitization, i am left stranded a cold turkey waiting for my next injection of miss kong.
Friday, September 15, 2006
i stand saddened and heartened, with what i am presented with. as my dearest mich will know by now after a most sombering evening (i do apologise), too many things are being said. verbosity does spell that dearth of an action we should have taken if not hesistancy be that very devil of execution. and also just launch forward if the heart says yes. of course that in itself is idealism at its apogee. it's rather depressing that we are made cynics by the very age that we live in, when everything moves at internet speed and expectations are presupposed on the factum that since search is so simple, there must be someone better. when are we going to stop looking? when are we going to be satisfied with what fate presents? but really, we are mere humans eh? a perennial easy excuse out.
oh sandy rocks, like a bottle of divine rosso montalcino, she just gets better with age. and she's just pure 1997 with this album. bless that woman.
Monday, September 11, 2006
september eleventh, since the metaphysical and symbolic (of course the woefully obvious physical accounted for) collapse of the twin towers and its addendum damages at the pentagon and a pennsylvanian field, has taken on a life of its own. it became the mother of anniversaries where the hyperboles of pain, terror, evil and misery were dispensed at will and ever so readily. it became the day when evil started wearing a tudang and Machiavellian took on a Muslim middle name. this in turn evolved into a constant state of fear/suspicion, which today we still fight an unwinning war against, fuelled by a taken-for-granted-incompetent and naïvely-hegemonic bush presidency and people who are only philosophically boldened to challenge this. the inconveniences of flight check-ins are one thing but to be inconvenient with our should-be-brazen actions against a poor leadership cannot be condoned. the threat that evil might manifest itself again in the ugliest of human form is hardly a versimilitude but the threat of perpetual talk or taking actions not germane to our cause in defeating what we set out to defeat, is more potent.
why do people celebrate anniversaries? of course if they are felicitious occasions, i'm all up for it. but otherwise, it seems like a annual masochistic exercise to mentally hurt oneself into forcefully remembering that that painful day is here.
'oh this is the third year since i broke up with that thug';
'i've lost [insert formerly-adorned item] on the same day exactly one year ago';
'it's september eleventh today'.
before accusations are shot at me for being a blithe unsentimentalist, i'm all for sentiments and memories. but i guess i'm more private than most people are. we don't need the physical embodiment of this vigilanting of memories- the whole shebang is almost entirely unnecessary. i always believed that when one's at the apogee of calamitous sadness, tears do not properly enunciate the impact anymore. when one has energy to outwardly manifest this, it means the impact has not done its job. it should completely destroy you, till a point where it is almost impossible to breathe and your insides are wrecked and your mind a complete disarray that normal anatomical processes become redundant. i think that's happened to those who have lost someone at a gross tragedy as such. and combined with a complete bewilderment at something so incredibly nefarious could crash right into the human heart so effectively and with such haste, i would have thought that i, myself, would not feel more 'mere human' than this. sometimes i wonder why being humans and thus applying the common axiom of 'i'm only human', we're put through such gargantun emotions that proves so much bigger than life.
then i slap myself awake, and realise the faculties of hope, concern, spiritual anchors in the form of blind faith/religion and the ever-propounded concept of human love. as cliché as they come, these are things that make life that little bit better, and if managed properly they can indeed overcome plenty of hurdles that proved insurmountable. not forgetting they mitigate the effects of painful anniversaries. and alleviate the crumbling weight of the burden of ashes.
Sunday, August 20, 2006
It starts with white, somehow.
Stuttered stanzas with limps of words
the black of ink roaming this
maudlin pasture of imagination
To tell this tale
grey as the heavy sky
soaked in the tears of the clouds
and the thunders that never made sense
White that were the rose petals
Eager to fall back to earth
as the purest forms of sorrow
its innocence kissing away their fears
of their looming fate of black.
Lest the omnipresent dawn breaks
The iridescent calm
that comes as the hardest pill to swallow
but slowly unfolds itself
to reveal that the clarity of love
is never spoken-
capsuled in the linguisitcs of memory.
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
Amsterdam was good, but only with the company i serendipitously amassed. otherwise i thought the city lacked that omph that gives say Edinburgh and Paris that extra appeal you can't quite place a finger on. spacecakes and purple joints can only get one thus far, and a bad trip is going to make it all worse anyhow. even with the ubiquitous canals snaking through the city, i still felt it lacking in something that venezia has (even though it might be overrun with tourists of all sorts). however the lovely accommodation of Hilton helped, and as mentioned, the company made it all good.
Of course food wasn't the only thing preoccupying me, although Yenz would probably put her life on the line to argue otherwise, what with the incessant whines to meal and constant obsession with snacking on random stalls walked by. Malaga was passable and as chilled as we were we didn't feel quite prepared to waste another day in this slow-town. We proceeded to Marbella where white-washed boats are harboured aplenty and the beaches more welcoming. It was such a gorgeous day, we just enjoyed a leisurely day on the beach with semi-cold froths of water washing up our sun-beaten bodies. It was a magnificent feeling, one that you won't get to feel a lot, even in Singapore where the humidity just takes the kick out of sunbathing/beaching. Marbella, ah- my mistress of a beach resort. We had a wonderfully good day there, nothing short of hyperbolic relishing of joy. And after a terribly hard day's work of sunbathing and Mediterranean Sea forlicking we thought we might well deserve a popsicle to tame the heat but pictures turned out to be more suggestive than we thought,
especially since we were seen by passerbys to indulge in the 'eating action' and ferociously taking pictorial evidence of ourselves while the sticky fruity flavours dripped down our clumsy hands. Still, happy times.
I think both of us were rather taken aback with the architectural beauty and never-ending polaroid-worthy views of the city of Sevilla. Everywhere we turned we found something most extraordinaily sumptuous to human sight and marvel at the intricacies of the Moorish tiling or the symmetry of designs that make them all so pretty. The Sevilla Catedral and La Giralda humbled us and shut us up completely, even all the obscenely-repeated 'ooohs' and 'aaahs'. It was just that little crazy to see something so immensely grand, every single nuance in architecture, art and religious symbolism were all taken care of and each altarpiece, each nave, each sacristry were just overwhelming in their own rights and league. one has to be there to witness the looming beauty of it. La Giralda brought us to such heights that to catch the Reales Alcaraz and the Catedral all in a single breath, was a subsuming feeling. it definitely lives up to its affectionate nickname of Sevilla's Effiel Tower, only with more meaning and allegorical depth. This really brings our insight into Sevilla to new heights (pun unintended), a city highly recommended to anyone planning to visit anywhere in the Mediterranean really. Just keep practising at holding your breath.
Oh did i forget to mention Sevilla is also home to Zara. thus on the main shopping street alone, there was 3 Zara Women, 1 Zara Mens and 1 Zara Home. imagine how flighty Yenz got when she found 'home'. shopping in general was great as well, let's just say we returned poor but very happy people.
This trip was great really, some fantastic memories to keep and great anecdotes to share over wine and cheese. I think a good travel companion is vital in the impression of the trip overrall and thanks to mine this time round, our foray into Andalucia has been more than gorgeous. so here's to us, and more to come.
Wednesday, May 10, 2006
after a rather rewarding vacation placement at the oh-so-mentioned Magic Circle firm complete with Mayfair dinner clubbing and expensive social events (where is the work bit?), a mad frenzy, head-first into academic catching-up was guaranteed, considering i took the chance to go to the Balkans + Venice for 2.5 weeks and blankly staring at my text in London, relegating it to bedtime hypnosis reading. well life is all about chances, the excitement comes with the unexpected result that is consequent- i need a blind woman from nip/tuck to tell me that. (Commercial: nip/tuck season 2 is the most lurid medical-human drama/soap on television hitherto, catch it and you will forever think twice about undergoing a comestic procedure) Well i was bored like that see, got hooked onto the Sainsbury's DVD rental services and trying to maximise it whilst i'm still on the 30-day trial. And can you not help yourself from falling hopelessly for Famke Janssen? That oneiric beauty, combined with a matured patina of feminine aura and downright raw sexuality that oozes like *rude analogy censored*... I do digress but can you quite blame me? Not that i need any sort of pictorial representation to remind myself of her, but beauty never hurts, or too much actually:
i CANNOT wait for x-men:the last stand, someone restrain me. And i'm getting hooked to this image attaching capability.
Moving along (i think i'm able to now), spring has finally arrived proper. apart from the rather annoying slaps of cold winds that would make you regret perambulating in your surf shorts, it is otherwise getting rather hospitable and proves to be quite that succor to the biting, dreadful winter not too long ago. i managed to trot up part of Arthur's Seat just to read my notes on a carpet of grass (flies and crawlies taint the lovely experience somewhat), under the glorious sun that refuses to play secondary to cumulonimbus- it was a gorgeous feeling. not that it was exactly a fruitful academic outing, but hey we need to feel good without unnecessary encrumbrances. i would proceed to attach another picture here but i really don't have one.
well thereafter were a series of wine sessions at mates' and catching up, having not seen them for quite a bit. also did catch MI:3 which turned out not to be quite the pablum of a 2. pace was good, suspense was biting at times and plot was tight, albeit still no comparison to the first instalment. but one can definitely see j.j.abrams casting out his own league in the action-mystery-thriller sphere. 2 claps.
not everything is quite that invidious as proclaimed. there were/are some menial errands to be executed, details of which i will not venture to bore you with. but what is the most invidious could be my plans for the next few weeks, leading right up to my eventual prodigal return to good-ol' Singapore. a string of trips and friends that give me that wee rush everytime i think about it. i see verdant patches clouding over some faces, so i will leave it at that.
well not quite, swallow this baby: munich (getting me some ball action, *wink*), paris (oh love me the same way as i love you), salzburg (the prodigal meeting the dead prodigy), malaga (think beach whale and liking it), sevilla (some Moorish jingle-lings), london (the future speaks), cambridge (friendly obligations) and amsterdam (stone me up). and company to beat. bite me.
with this salmagundi of activities that i leave you to digest and crunch over, i take my leave but i (semi) promise to do this more often, now that i don't have recondite concepts that i need to grasp but don't care about and i have regained my inner-equipoise (sorry tim, your time will come- with you in spirit though). Balkans pictures next chance.
Monday, April 17, 2006
I am currently in Ljubljana, Slovenia after a almost 9 hour train ride from Split down on the Dalmatian coast. It was a rather welcome, even more so considering we had almost perfect weather the whole 5 days in Croatia. my regret was just that I couldn't quite be that beach whale given it was still rather cold and even the water sports centre was closed until May. at least there was the sun to give some comfort. Seafood! it was as if no one back home knew the trick to perfect calamari is fresh squid and the fish was so nicely grilled, you won't feel how much you are actually downing. However by territoral feel, Split was more compact and more historical to feel that much less touristy than Dubrovnik which felt like it was built just for tourists. given its beaches and weather, it had to be in a way. but the peopl here were the friendliest- maybe it really has a direct correlation with the amount of sunshine, considering the Hungarians were rather minimalist with their services and help rendered.
Budapest was probably the prettiest thus far though, the Danube dramatically splitting (pun really unintended) hilly Buda and flat Pest, oresenting a most varied and memorable landscape which was atopped by neo-Gothic and neo-Baroque architecture that was on the brink of being truly breathtaking. Bratislava was a depressing piece of post-Communist blues and the picture of the cafe selling 'Depresso' will agree with me. I haven't seen much of Ljubljana but judging from its petitness and bland landscape, it wouldn't be terribly exciting but the general feel of the city at first experience was rather comforting.
More to come and pictures of course, meanwhile back to my cell of a hotel room: I'm staying at a converted prison. for experience sake.
Sunday, March 12, 2006
the times i've been here, out of asia, has been quite a turbulent experience, in more a good way than otherwise. friends and company have been absolutely amazing, as with the people back home, who go all the way to make me feel remembered. i think through and through, i've been blessed with the best quotients of this world we live in- people, that become larger than life with what they contribute to my quality of life and to my culmination of memories that i will look back with fondness and forlorness as M is so wildly flattered by. as this past birthday testified (exact quantity of senescence withheld for mental health reasons), i really couldn't ask for more. i'm coming back in 3 months or so and someone at the flat party just posed me a rather difficult question: 'how would u feel on your last day in edinburgh?' i went cold for an instant and thought i would be leaving behind fantastic memories and people behind yet i'm looking forward to seeing people i love and miss back home, whom i'm dying to reunite. this tension is hard but i guess it's just part and parcel of an exchange stint since you can't expect to ship everyone home from your exchange place back home. nonetheless i've gotten the best of both worlds and i'm dying to share it with anyone who's ever so keenly in knowing. so till then, it's been a blast and watch out for the next update!
Wednesday, March 08, 2006
but really it has been a sorta unexpectedly great birthday for me. unexpected in a sense that i imagined without my closest people around me, it might be less of a thrill to celebrate my birthday. however i was proven wrong when person after person did things that touched me in ways i never knew they were capable of. first there were cards/semi-gifts from close friends, namely grace and kelvin. grace with that lovely aesthetic, post-modernist card that's unique in so many ways, and kelvin with those CDs that will keep me company on so many bored nights and essay-tormenting days. then came ek's call who claimed he was right on chronological target when he called at 4ish PM, since I was born in Singapore and thus must go by Singapore time. fair enough- one of the rare times his bullcrap made sense.lol. and my folks called at 2336 my time, promising to cross over my official day of birth over the phone with me. although no ang pao came, i must say this really moved me. as if this was not enough, my sis sent a blanketedly sweet card (albeit a virtual one) that had me in wee tears at the end of it. then came more cards, from shiuan and tim, and the card of cards came, finally, after much anticipation and the retarded work efficiency of Fedex. hsien's amazing booklet of a card which was just beautiful. and the scribblings on the postcards made me feel so close to them, somehow. i'm still at a loss for words, so let the beauty reflect itself.
and today with the dinner party and friends coming for drinks after, topped things off just perfectly. the banter was charming and the company was to die for. as tipsy as i got, i had this thought throughout the night that i have wonderful people in my life with love so encompassing that it darts straight to my very being, and this is regardless of how old i get. a sorta warmness immediately encapsulated me.
so to all people who made this possible, i stand humbled. and thank you doesn't even start to show how much i am grateful for all that has been done. it's been a blast, truly and amazingly.
Saturday, February 25, 2006
and so that puts a grand full stop to my oslo trip, me having done all the things i set out to- ice-skating, alpine skiing and cross-country skiing. and this is topped by seeing friends that i probably won't see for some time to come. and to see them all at once is indeed a rather heartening pleasure. i had a hasty rush through oslo the last time but this time, with a more thorough immersion in the norwegian way of life, made more acute through the locals that were such great hosts, i must say norway is beautiful in more ways than just it's mesmerizing scenery, be it at sea level or 500metres up. i guess friends make all the difference and in a way, they show you their city/country through their eyes and that can make or break your experience or outlook to that certain city/country. so all credits go to ingrid, charlotte, karine, anders and andre who, through their generous spirits and all-embracing hospitality, have made Norway one of the loveliest countries i've ever been, to say the very least.
Thursday, February 23, 2006
but u try topping a black slope.
Monday, February 20, 2006
And it was great catching up with ingrid, ånders (pronounced ar-nish) and karine after quite awhile. the warmth we felt made the -6 degrees celsius a comfortable gran canaria, it was just more than pleasant seeing them again. After some catching up at Ingrid's 3 by 3 room, we went to Karine's where we were going to put up, at Jessheim. the house is tremendously adorable, a true archetypal norwegian cabin-house complete with pine interiors and a white-washed exterior. it was a charming environment made ever-so norwegian by the snow stacking up also, which looks like it's going to take quite awhile to melt away. although it's a hefty £6 to get into oslo sentrum each time, the experience living in a norwegian household, is simply priceless. and plus it's a comfortable distance to go skiing from here and i'm going to try cross-country skiing for the first time- i'm turning norwegian here!
the norwegian winter experience starts and i would scream with excitement but that's just, rude. HA.
Friday, February 17, 2006
sigh another birthday is looming (yes the choice of vocabulary is just about right) and what is it about these things that become gradually depressing, that one wants to skip increasingly desperately. we've heard it too many times: with age comes wisdom, maturity and career development, etc. ya i want to be young and have all those. might be asking for a little too much, but till the first wrinkle appears i'm gonna celebrate my birthdays in full glam and style, so bring them on, i'm brave enough to face you straight on, climbing numbers of age. at the most i'll reminiscent of things past and laugh at what's gone past and know that i've had all those amazing times. especially this year, lots to look back upon with this exchange stint. so yes, till i return from norway then.
Saturday, January 28, 2006
it's the start of another new year and i thought it pivotal to enter an entry. things have been good so far this year. some nice people met along the way and of course, of paramount importance is my first step into the City with the Freshfields interview in my bag. was rather surprising, given that the 'get-to-know-me' part of the interview lasted a very thorough ten-minute in totality. and of course a bad vibe ensued. but all turned out well in the end and i get to be a pseudo City lawyer for 2 weeks over Easter. it must be an experience to wow-all over. bite me.
it's the first year that i'm gonna not be with my family for the lunar new year. 'tis feels a wee strange but if i'm going to venture into London for my career, i guess i have to get used to it. the most important thing being them safeguarding my ang-paos and not distribute them like a supper of the vultures.=) i'm going to have a reunion of such, of strangers no less, with the other Singaporeans here. it'll be fun, i'm sure, but it's not going to be the same with the people u've spent your life with. habits must be broken some times.
and as an expolation of my asian mood, i went to catch memoirs of a geisha yesterday. if you spare it from the connections with the arthur golden novel, it's actually quite a brillant film in its own rights. i think it reflects enough of what goes on in that epoch to give the audience a good-feel of the life of a geisha. in that manner, it has served its purpose its own stead. cinematography is gorgeous and the score by le maestro, John Williams, is flawless, in swimming up the mood of pre-war Japan, and the undercurrent emotions that sweeps through the movie. it is just seamless, rush to HMV all of you.
tell me all about your individual new year passings. i should grow all jealous but i want to know. happy lunar chinese new year to all you out there and woof woof.=)
Sunday, January 01, 2006
It's the start of a new year once more. The inauguration of resolutions, the spanking up of ash-dead wishes and the eternal hope of a new year that will be better. And i had been lucky to be in edinburgh. It's been maginificent really- what with the grandieous fireworks, wonderful friends to enjoy them with and the state of being sloshes but still feeling good at the end. Hogmanay was a blast though i must concur that the day prior was better with the Catalan parades and dazzling displays of stilt-walkers dressed as dinosaurs and miscellaneous jesters to make it all that much different from the rest of parades i've witnessed.
the new year, what can i say about it. the past year hasn't treated me bad- i got my exchange, my fair share of parties- a combination of fun and introspection with the aftermaths and friends that has proven to tide with me through thick and thin, that i'm most grateful for. i don't believe in resolutions for either you feel pressured to oblige with them or one just breaks them without the conscious knowledge that it is just simply a poor reflection of one's character with the lack of mental discipline or the likes. i had mishaps and unpleasant people and experiences to boot but we learn to look at the bright side of things- the glass HAS to be half full. it's all psychology and we have to amend our state of minds to deal with bad situations. afterall they pop out right in front of you without notice and rather than sulk at the poor situations that you are presented with, might as well make the best out of a bad circumstance. it's idealistic but really, in this disappointing world we live in, it's the best one can manage. like my trip to italy with my gorgeous camera pickpocketed from me, I have to look back and realise that I have been to pisa, firenze, roma, verona, venezia and padova all in one trip and they have been pretty places that few can aspire to go to. i have been lucky really and what money can solve, are no problems at all. my mum and certain friends have mentioned that the best memories u can keep are the ones in your mind. so there we go.
anyhoo, here's a happy new year to all who's been so kind as to read this. festive hugs to all and i must say, it has been a gorgeous year, thanks to all the members who have made it so and here's a toast to another fantastic year ahead. sante!