Monday, February 08, 2016

TAKE MY BODY

(music: All I Want - Kodaline)

if you loved me, why'd you leave me?

I've been bingeing on Breaking Bad on Netflix and am pretty much convinced it's the best TV series I've ever watched.



Jesse/Jane were my OTP until, you know, the inevitable happened. They had a conversation about their ideal super powers and I had also talked about it with Nick, when I was in LA. Funnily enough, he was the one who spoiled the impending doom of their relationship for me, I dunno why he did so???




When Hank began his hobby of collecting minerals, I got reminded of the ring I've decided to get for myself this year.



It's white gold, with a pink sapphire in emerald cut.

Jewelry is not usually my thing and you don't normally find me wearing expensive things apart from my wristwatches, and I especially hate ridiculously worthless overpriced diamond rings. The entire diamond industry disgusts me.

I fell for this as soon as I set my eyes on it though. It's a bit steep for my current financial status, but I thought, this is the year I reclaim my own person, the year I live for myself, and if you like it you put a ring on it and I do so love me, so I thought it's a great gift to myself. Plus I think it's really decently priced for its worth.

I told myself I would get it the moment I'm done paying off the government for my stupid student loan, and settling all my personal debts. This would be the first sign of my actual financial freedom, so I cannot wait to feel it on my finger. (Can you tell I'm a goal-oriented person?)

Tonight, we had reunion dinner steamboat.




I really and appreciate my family a lot when we do these cross-cultural traditions, the fact that I don't have any Chinese blood in me but I'm able to do Chinese-family-activities for Chinese festive occasions. It gives me a lot more insight into more worlds than one, which always makes for a slightly more open mind.

Also, we were cooking our own food and the last time I did that was with Nick in Koreatown and today was his birthday so I was a tangle of feelings as I thought of feeding him stuff, and I ate a gross chewy whole octopus because he asked me to, and you know.

I asked my sister to watch the trailer for the Me Before You movie, and she insisted on getting the book ASAP, to read it before the film is released.


I was reading the book (the PDF version, thank you Zakiah! ♥)...


And he asked for a scratch and it tugged at some part of my heartstrings. I got reminded of the times Nick would ask me to scratch his back (literally), and then I smiled but frowned wistfully.

The book is about a quadriplegic and his quirky caregiver, and they have a limited amount of time to spend together, which feels all sorts of unfair and unjust and upsetting and I cried after reunion dinner. My mum saw, came in and hugged me, tucked me into my mattress and comforters, while I finished reading the book.

Thing is, I'm the crybaby of the family and you'd be hard put to see me dry-eyed at a sad book, a sad movie, a sad conversation, a sad memory (and with a memory like mine, I remember every detail of everything) and this is why my grandma is prone to worrying about me.

Ironically enough, I think it is the crying that has helped me through my life. I always tell my best friends to cry it out, because I think it really helps. I am not one to bottle up my feelings, I tried for a few months last year and almost went over the edge.

Apart from the emotional blackmail tearjerker of a book (really looking forward to the film, still!!!!) I also felt a lot of privilege from the quadriplegic male protagonist, because he hails from a rich background. He seemed to be used to the world falling into his lap etc, but somehow I felt like sometimes I related to his entitled attitude?

It makes no sense, especially since I'm not from any privileged nor entitled social circles at all, and yet, and yet I feel like/I know I act like I deserve more from life? Like it shouldn't treat me so poorly because I'm so smart, so able, so... full of potential? IDK. I'm trash.


This is possibly the most apt, perfect song to use for the soundtrack of Me Before You, and I would be disappointed if they didn't use it. I keep listening to all the lyrics and finding them suitable.

Anyway, this year, thanks to something I read from Viv (probably a Tweet), I decided to start using a gratitude app. I wanted to have a happier, happy year, and so I began listing down things that made me happy in a day.

I made them the simplest of things, so that even in my downest moments, I could look back and realise even if I was financially flat broke or tired or PMSing, I can lift my own spirits with the easiest and most attainable acts.









So one of my happier moments were every time Nick called, because listening to his voice brings me such ease.

But then I effectively kinda put an end to those. I know I read an article somewhere that some people with missing father figures tend to do that, we choose romantic partners who may not be able to be present, in any sense of the word. I've done it a few times. I get attached, then I blame the circumstances. Sigh. When will I learn?

In any case, I was staying up to let my eyes kinda cool down from the overflowing tears while reading Me Before You, and now I need to sleep. It is a new lunar year, new moons, new tides, new me. I'm going to wake up and be excited about my outfit and the food and the ang pows, and the sister time.

Have a great bank holiday, y'all! Have a prosperous, wealthy, healthy, safe and sound and happy new year! x

Thursday, January 28, 2016

SHALL I STAY?

(music: Can't Help Falling in Love - twenty one pilots)

would it be a sin
if I can't help falling in love with you?

So, Chinese New Year is coming up, and you know what that means!

...besides the mahjong/Stephen Chow-related movies playing 24/7 and the bingeing on unhealthy pineapple tarts and junky snacks, and (for my sisters and I in particular) watching our favourite Thai movie together, while collecting ang pow$$$$!

I feel ever so nostalgic and sentimental and wistful thinking of this year's Chinese New Year celebrations, because I have this feeling future celebrations of cultural festivities may have to be spent apart.

No matter, though, my family unit is a close-knit one, and Lyssa and I are already planning silly things to Skype with each other (like the dog in shoes and me walking and looking confusedly --- oh our inside jokes forever).

So anyway, Hari Raya and Lunar New Year are two occasions of the year I use as an excuse to dress up and look my 100%. If you're also preparing to deck yourself out for the OOTD Instagram opportunities, you should check out Vanitee!


It's free for download on the Apple App Store and Google Play.





It promises your happiness (this is a rather dangerous promise, because you shouldn't necessarily equate outer beauty with feeling happy but for simplicity's sake and this post, we'll take it :P) and should you ever be unhappy with any service, there's a 100% refund guarantee. That's how sure they are of all the services available on the app!

*coughpuncough* Pretty much everything you need to look and feel pretty, can be booked on Vanitee.



You've got nails, makeup, hairstyling, brow and lash services, and everything else.


Everything else encompasses facials, hair removal sessions, massages and professional styling.

You can view registered beauty merchants by business name, and each listing includes the distance between yourself and them, as well as a star rating.




You can even view the vendors based on previous works/services rendered. Say you're going for a particular look of brows and lashes, and you like how a previous client's look turned out, click on the photo and it takes you straight to the beauty specialist who provided that look for her!

I decided to go for a facial because I hadn't gone for one for ages, and also, after my winter holiday in the US, my skin had been dry and flaky af, so I wanted to hydrate and moisturise it.

Tiff's Facial House caught my eye so I went to explore it further.



You're able to view photos of the space and products used.


I also read very helpful reviews about the beauticians and the satisfaction levels of previous Vanitee app users.




I honest-to-God found the booking process extremely smooth and hassle-free. They had like, half-hourly slots for each day, and I booked a suitable session for myself within 5 minutes flat.



I went for my facial yesterday and I loved it. My favourite part about facials is the extraction of whiteheads/blackheads. To be honest, my skin is pretty much alright so I rarely if ever use concealer or foundation. I put on blush, eyeliner, mascara, lipstick and draw my brows but I cannot be bothered with powder or contouring, lol.

I never use toner or moisturiser (which means I have big open pores on my face) and at times, I do get too lazy to remove my makeup before I sleep at night, so that means occasionally my pores get clogged and then the whiteheads form.

My lazy way of dealing with them is just to go for facials every once in a while, so I don't need to bother with the day-to-day cleansing and skincare. This is NOT how you should treat your skin, but I'm just saying it's how I do it, hehehe. :/

So yesterday she extracted all the gunk from my face, and it was efficient and smooth enough that I fell asleep, but I also saw afterwards that there were a lot of whiteheads on the piece of cotton pad that she had prepared for my extraction. Oh my goodness, the satisfaction I feel at every facial, hahaha.

I also had a milky serum thing (milk on my face always reminds me of something else but I have underaged readers so lemme just laugh that off by myself), and it just made my skin feel so dewy and soft.

I didn't take any photos 'cos my skin was a bit pinkish and bloated from the extraction, but you know how it goes. I also had some yuzu tea, after I was done with the facial. I love the little things that they do to ease you back into reality, like hot tea to wake you up after your facial/nap.

Do check out Vanitee! I'm really interested in their nail merchants too! I think what's great about Vanitee is that you can kinda depend on the reviewers to know what they're talking about. It seems to be people who have been to their share of beauty sessions and know the market of services available. If they can be satisfied, I would count on being satisfied too. (And indeed I definitely was!)

Vanitee have got loads of goodies and promotions for pre-Chinese New Year appointments that are sure to hype you up even more for the season! :)


This is not related to the rest of the post, but Lyssa listens to twenty one pilots and once upon a time (I think last year) she said this rendition of this song might make her slightly believe in love (right before she retracted it again).

My sister has a deep mistrust of men (understandable given our lack of a early father figure), but if she ever gets married, this has to go on her wedding playlist. One time, I told a guy that I didn't want a grand wedding, if I ever get married, I would want my husband and I to wear sneakers and hoodies. He agreed which made me feel very gleeful, but as it turns out, it doesn't seem like he's gonna be my husband anymore.

I'm really looking forward to New Year. I saw this amazing red jumpsuit in a storefront that I would love to rock. I haven't actually tried it on and seen how it looks on me, though, so I'm not sure if that's my confirmed outfit.

Have a lovely February, everybody! So Much Love!

Sunday, January 24, 2016

PERFECT MATCH, PERFECT SOMEHOW

(music: Fire Meet Gasoline - Sia)

A couple days ago, I wrote in my travelling journal. So far, it's seen two continents and travelled across eight timezones.



I usually open it when I'm sad 'cos I put little mementos of my happy memories in the little accompanying envelope, just in case I get lonely by myself or whatever.



Polaroids and people are some of my favourite things.

Every few months, I write in it about my feelings.


The last time I wrote in it was October. That was before I found out about the hoo-ha of my biological dad, so I was more wistful about the year, than upset.


This time, I wrote about Nick. He is really manja in person, like he would ask for head rubs, which I found the most adorablest thing, but he doesn't do it over text or calls. Given that I'm not in LA to be manja with him, it's pretty much a deadlock.

I write about these feelings a few months apart because some things and some feelings, no matter how convinced you are, are only fleeting and ephemeral. If I don't feel the same in a while, then I know which of these feelings are real.

I also came up with a few premises for my writing. So far, the genre has nothing to do with love or romance (thank goodness), and I think I have a few ideas to flesh them out. The premises are not related to my life experiences at all, though obviously anything that has shaped me and/or my life will in a way shape the story.

*

Sometime this week, my mum sent a video of my little sisters when they were actually little, to the family group chat.


It was so cute! I'm so glad somebody (me, always) had the sense to film all these snippets of them being random. Oh they used to speak so innocently, and so nonsensically?!?!

Lyssa and I went down memory lane, watching the old videos together, and laughing hysterically after midnight, until our grandma had to shush us because she doesn't want us to disturb our aunt's family (whose house we are currently staying at).



"Can start all over?" with that toothy grin and a scrunched up nose. "can start all over?" is the current family catchphrase. They used to be so tembam and pinchworthy.

One of my favourite things about my family is how chapalang we are, how we each speak Malay and Mandarin and sometimes the younger ones attempting to speak Malay, and them questioning us in Mandarin (hah our baby sisters challenging us at multilingualism??? yo, really? where'd they think they'd pick it up if not from us).

A reminder that this is our latest sister photo.



I'm only taller than Aqilah if I wear heels.


That's right, my 13-year-old sister is taller than 26-year-old me. I think sometimes she doesn't like being so tall and being called a "giant" and whatnot, but I would LOVE to be taller. Like you know how subconsciously men wield more power in public based on the space they occupy? Generally, taller-than-average women command more respect and don't get messed with by guys.

You know how I call Aqilah "giant"? She called me a "midget" yesterday. Me, a midget? What the heck would Han be??? I wish I was towering over everyone else like Mama is, so I can go around calling guys "midgets" although come to think of it, is midget a politically-correct term? Not sure.

While we were going through my archive of videos, I saw the one of me in Bali going berserk from shrooms.


The guy in this video used to be one of my trusted guys in life, I think one of my favourite memories of him is always gonna be when we lifted weights at the gym together. Now I would rather not hold a conversation with this "bro", see life is really transient. I think people who understand that have a better chance at lasting.

The new Suicide Squad trailer also dropped this week.


It's due for release in August, which I lamented with Lyssa, 'cos it's not a time I think I'll be around to watch it with her in Singapore. Harley Quinn is her favourite, and when I was in LA I saw a Harley Quinn character and wanted to take a photo but we were in a hurry. General plans for the year, as I told Lyssa, are that I would be back in winter, for her birthday.

Can't I just fold her and bring her around with me everywhere?

*

Last night, I went for a class gathering organised by Pamela and Yixuan. It has been ten years since we were actually classmates.





We had Turkish food for mains.




Then headed to Haji Lane for desserts.

We talked about work (teaching/stocks/physiotherapist/advertising/real estate/insurance), and relationships. Pamela asked about relationships and how you would know someone is "the one" to settle down with. We were very much doing the "adulting" thing, talking about things that wouldn't have crossed our minds five years ago, let alone ten.

It was really good to reminisce good old times, and even the bad ones, paranoia about which schoolmates hated us, and verifying the truths about the teachers who actually really hated us as a class. Counting off how many teachers we pushed to tears, speaking fondly about our favourites.

The times we were suspended, given detention, punished for fights and videos and God-knows-what. We were an interesting class, to say the least.

I think last night was really enjoyable, poking fun at each other about old jokes and new, and it's good to see some of the faces I spent four of the best years of my life with. Thank you to Pamela and Yixuan for organising it. Next reunion, Son's wedding (HEHEHE) or I promise I will organise one.



This is the lane I spent the last two years of my life working at, and I did see some of my ex-colleagues, some of whom I dearly miss. I will always like it better at night, when it comes alive, than in the day.



I've always seen the phrase "wherever you are, we are under the same moon" but never fully appreciated it till now. Granted, we don't see it at the same time, but it is the very same moon we are looking at, which means, two points on Earth are never that far away, if we have the same object within view. Only 14000km and 16 hours, har har har. It really isn't that far.

I got home later than I usually do, and I felt so tired. God I am such an oldie inside.