Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Somewhere Out There (click on this to view Judy Garland singing the song in The Wizard of Oz)

Somewhere, over the rainbow, way up high.
There's a land that I heard of once in a lullaby.
Somewhere, over the rainbow, skies are blue.
And the dreams that you dare to dream
Really do come true.
Someday I'll wish upon a star and wake up where the clouds are far behind me.
Where troubles melt like lemon drops,
Away above the chimney tops.

That's where you'll find me.
Somewhere, over the rainbow, bluebirds fly.
Birds fly over the rainbow,

Why then - oh, why can't I?
If happy little bluebirds fly beyond the rainbow,
Why, oh, why can't I?

My 2009

2009 isn't a good year for me. it's one of the worst in fact. most of you who have been following my blog would know this.

i thought that moving to KL to be near my family would make this year a good year. i was dead wrong.

in late january, my mother passed away at Damansara Specialist Hospital. i was in denial, because despite all the reprimands i got from her, and despite my inadequate attention to her, i realised that she loved me the most and i couldn't bear seeing her go.

death of a loved one changes one forever.

to distract myself, i went to Bangkok with Anne, and had fun shopping there. in june, i went to China with Mozie, sort of discovering my roots there. a lot of the Chinese stared at me, out of curiosity i guess, since i look like a Chinese but don't behave like one. many spoke Mandarin to me. obviously i didn't understand anything. the highlight of the tour was the climb up the Great Wall.

i'm not going to write about my school, because i'll be repeating myself here. only that it's different than what i'm used to. and it turned me into a disillusioned person.

i know that i'm a person ruled by emotions. when i'm happy, you'll know it because i'll be talking non-stop and when i'm upset, i'll be like a cloudy day. when i'm happy about something, then everything is okay - my self-esteem, my confidence. i'm a better teacher. without it, everything goes down.

worst of all, the person i looked up to isn't what i thought she was. she tried to sell us the idea of equality, camaraderie and respect among members but i discovered that underneath that facade, it's back to that basal perception. i was devastated.

and so, with all the disappointments and the grief, i've nothing to smile about.

on second thought, i do have something to be proud of. after looking at my pics taken in China, i decided to join a fitness centre. it was something i would never do in the past. but the reality show The Biggest Loser helped me see that it's possible. and so, despite the slow progress, i held on, and endured, and now i'm proud to say that in June i could only walk on the treadmil at 4.5kmph, but now i jog at 6.4kmph. who would have thought it, me, jogging?!!

i can control my happiness. and i hope i'll be able to do so in 2010.

that's my new year resolution.

to be happy.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Girls Day Out (and an adventure)

it's not everyday that i go out with my friends, and i had fun yesterday.

our tesl friend Kirah came down from Penang to visit K.Nan, and since she's about to start her M.ed dissertation, she wanted to visit the uni libraries in KL. and since i did my MA in UM, K.Nan requested that i be the guide to UM. mozie also decided to follow.

and so, before 9am yesterday, i could hear K.Nan's merry voice calling me from outside. off we went, and soon i was infected by K.Nan northern dialect and before i knew it i was also switching to northern dialect (and not doing a good job of it).

it was noisy in the car, and it was fun.

when kirah and her friend went to the library, mozie, k.nan and i went to have morning snack at one of the cafes. mozie brought her netbook along. when you put 3 teslians together, all you can hear is laughter, oblivious to the fact that none of us are UM students (me, my alma mater) and that we don't have the right to make such ruckus there. hmm...may be ruckus is a harsh word. merry making? that sounds nicer.

after the long break, we made our move to the library, hoping that kirah would be done in time for us to have lunch at MidValley. i must say the library looks a little bit different than the last time i went there (duh! that was like, 6 years ago?). we sat on the modern red sofas facing the glass door entrance, with kak nan talking loudly as usual and mozie putting on her make up in the process. after a while, an arab man sat beside k.nan. she was lamenting how she wanted to do masters and i suggested that we go to IPS to get the forms. off we went to IPS.

the postgrad students were registering and that brought back memories - of long queues, some helpful and also sullen and rude officers. we went to the main office and i was surprised to learn that we can download the form online...wah!

on the way back to the library mozie suddenly exclaimed "Oh my God!" and, noting her alarm both of us asked what's the matter. MOZIE'S NETBOOK WASN'T THERE!!

we reasoned that she must have left it at the library. so we went back to check. and guess what? IT WASN'T THERE! another arab man was there and he told us that he's been sitting there for the past 20 mins and there was no sign of any netbook. we went to talk to the security guard. who probably thought that this wasn't an urgent matter, judging from his lack of enthusiasm and unwillingness to help (i wonder why he took this job in the first place). we immediately suspected the arab man and wanted to see the video caught on cctv. the librarian told us to file a report at the security office first then we can view the video footage at the library. off we went to 12th College and after a few mins of filing a report, we went back to the library. we viewed the video and saw the arab man leaving with an extra object.

it was a big blow. i felt sorry for mozie because her brother bought it for her in the US and refusing to believe that it's gone, i still looked under the red sofa, just in case the netbook was somewhere there.

by the time we arrived at midvalley it was nearly 4pm. we had a late lunch at Madam Kwan. sazi called and told us to wait for her. after sazi arrived, the group split into 2 and sazi, mozie and i spent more than 1 hour going in and out of jewellery shops. i was salivating.

we called it a day nearly 9pm.

exhausted. but quite a day.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Save Our World - what you can do

i'm not one of those passionate Greenpeace people who are willing to go all the way to protect earth. but in my own small way, i do contribute to conserving our environment.

one thing i notice about us the malaysians is that we don't have that i-don't-care/tak kisah attitude. before you get upset and let anger control your brain, please allow me to explain.

we love to shop. and when we shop, we use a lot of plastic bags. most of us know that plastic bags are non-biodegrable goods. and yet we use them, we dispose of them indiscriminately. and that's not all, we love the disposable plates and cups. unless they're made of paper, they are all non-biodegrable.

last few nights i sat watching the Oprah Show. the topic was on environmental issues. they showed some disturbing pictures. pictures that i can't forget. imagine seeing a stork stuck in a plastic wrapper and a turtle who is deformed because its body is stuck in a bottle. imagine seeing turtles dying because the little babies thought that plastic bags are food. imagine seeing whales getting breast cancer. cousteau said that the whales are the yardstick in measuring how serious the environmental pollutions are.

why should we bother?

because we're a part of the chain. you upset one, you upset all. you kill the animals and the plants, then what do we have left? how are we going to survive?


certain countries have banned plastic bags. when i was in China, the Watson branches charge customers if they ask for plastic bags. we don't do that in Malaysia.

i like to bring my reusable shopping bag when i go grocery shopping. at first it was hard, because the plastic bags are always there at the counter and they are really convenient. but after awhile i'm so used to carrying my groceries in my bag that i feel awkward if i forget the bag and have to use plastic ones. sad to say, not many use reusable shopping bags. i cringe whenever i see someone leaving MaxValu with many many plastic bags. selfish uncaring people!

most supermarkets sell their own reusable shopping bags. i have one from Cold Storage, Jusco and Giant. i have no problem with Cold Storage and Jusco, but i had problems with Giant. but that's a different story.

So what can you do to conserve environment, as caring Malaysians?

1. Always bring your reusable shopping bags. don't say "i forgot" and "plastic bags are more convenient" it's so easy to give excuses, isn't it?

2. if you go to fastfood restaurants, ask them for paperbags instead of plastic bags. i did that at McDonald's.

3. if you have to ta pao food, bring your own food container. don't give me that "i forgot" crap again.

4. go paperless. this is the time to access your phone and credit card bills online. better still, do online banking!! you save time, fuel, and obviously money.

5. bring your own bottle of water. stop buying bottled water. you'll end up throwing the plastic bottles. remember they are non-biodegradable.

these are the things that i always do.

remember, there is only ONE environment.

important links

How you live your life makes a difference to our environment

11 Ways to Save Your Planet

Monday, December 21, 2009

things fall apart

no, it's not chinua achibe's book.

i'm merely referrring to my life right now. spiralling down, falling into the bottomless pit.

i made a big mess for the past 2 weeks. and with that gone is my credibility as a member in the elite fraternity.

i thought i was doing okay, but the fact that my mind and my heart wasn't into it showed that i had a lot of things in my mind and it's wreaking havoc with my life.

as one of my friends noted, my spiral down began when i arrived in KL. my mother's passing on is something that i can't get over with, because i felt so guilty for all the pain i had caused her...if only i had been a more attentive and dutiful daughter. if only, if only...

i'm not happy with my current school. i feel like it's a temporary pad, instead of having that sense of belonging like what i feel towards Sultan Sulaiman. a friend told me how different i look now, because the last time she saw me i was happy and enthusiastic. i was teaching in SS at that time. how do i eliminate this disillusionment about teaching the hooligans? i used to teach with passion, but now there's hardly a genuine smile on my face. worse, when i'm told that i've to teach in the afternoon session i feel like i've fallen further. i feel like a ball being tossed about.

and sometimes in life you learn that things are not what they seem to be. that there are underlying meanings and connotations that all pretend not to notice. sometimes you feel like screaming your heart out to stop this madness.

there's nothing to smile about in my life right now. there's a metaphorical hole in me, just like Salman Rushdie's character Dr Aaziz Sinai. i'm trying so hard to fill in the void, but i don't know how.

(i can't help but wondering if what i'm going through is a typical process of displacement/dislocation...see? despite my emotional outburst i'm talking about postcolonial theory!)

to be frank, to have someone would have been wonderful for me right now. i can't handle this alone.

i wish i can go back to the days of idleness and ignorance. for a while.

Friday, December 04, 2009


i feel like i'm a zombie now.

thanks to my late night Twilight series reading. last night i read Breaking Dawn until nearly 2 am. i was supposed to read (supposed, supposed supposed...even i'm bored with the word) Fasting Feasting, but obviously i couldn't resist Breaking Dawn, which was lying dangerously on my bed. and so, despite having Fasting Feasting with me, i put it down. and resumed reading Breaking Dawn.

by 1.07 am, i figured it out that i could still read some more. so i read until 1.45 am. even then my eyes were still alert. but i forced myself to sleep.

so today, even as i'm typing this, i look like a zombie. i'm not chirpy as usual, i look more a sleepwalker going through the routines with no emotions.

my only fear is that my chief will be disappointed with me. i can picture her face now, scolding me with arms on her hips. oh wait, that's me scolding the hooligans...

still have some time before i check into the hotel. all i want right now is some sleep.

Thursday, December 03, 2009


that's a term coined to mean twilight diehard fans.

okay, as my friends have stated in amusement in my facebook, i'm head over heels with robert pattinson. and so, after watching Twilight, i decided to find the DVD. sold out in Speedy shops. so i went to another shop. didn't have any, but they told me to come again the next day.

and so i did. twilight was sold out, but they have New Moon. i was due to watch the movie that night with Shidah and Lily, but i thought, what the heck. after some acid comments to them for the previous DVDs that i bought, i asked acidly (again)

"betul clear ni?"

"betul kak"

"kalau tak?"

"boleh tukar kak"

and so i went home happily. but i was not too happy afterwards when i realised the first minute that i only could see kristen stewart's face, but not robert pattinson! i could only see his body! he's headless! i was irritated to the core.

the next day i went to the same shop to return the DVD.

"saya nak tengok robert pattinson tapi nampak body je. muka tak nampak. nak tukar la"

they had Twilight and so i took it. was happy as a kid again. went home and kept hearing the background music. very loud. then i saw kristen's mouth's moving. there was no sound! but the background music was there. i fast forwarded for awhile, and it's the same thing throughout the movie!! loud background music, and no dialogues!!! arghhh!!!!

fuming, i started downloading the movie myself. that was better.

i'm supposed to be revising literary texts for my quarantine, but what i did was i went to Popular book store to buy Twilight the novel. they sold out on the first novel. so i bought New Moon. that day i went to the gym and so i had the excuse to go to Kinokuniya to buy Twilight. and i was happy. finished the book in one day. i then started New Moon, knowing full well that i should be reading Julius Caesar instead. finished the book in one day too.

just like Edward Cullen says "your scent is like a drug to me", the novels is like my drug. i'm like someone who has gone beserk. in my rational mind i know i should be revising.

let me tell you one thing though. when i started reading Twilight, it was because of Robert Pattinson. but when i started New Moon, it was because i like Stephenie Meyer's writing, and i like the way she portrays Bella and Edward. i like the witticism. though i must say that she hasn't that finesse. okay, i should stop analysing her like a literature scholar would.

so anyway, because the novels is like a drug to me (which amused my friends who know that i'm a literature snob who reads only serious literature and scorns any pulp fictions), i went to Kinokuniya once more, and instead of lingering there for one hour as i usually do, i went straight to find Eclipse and Breaking Dawn, and queued to pay.

again, i told myself that i should reserve both novels when i'm under quarrantine. so i started revising Fahrenheit 451. the book is good, don't get me wrong. Ray Bradbury is a good writer and his novel is like poetry but as i said, the Twilight Saga novels is a drug for me, and i just couldn't resist. and so, i read only 35 pages of Fahrenheit and thought that i should go to sleep. but before i went to sleep, i couldn't resist reading my bedtime story, and what do you know, i started reading Eclipse! thought i could put the book down. the next thing i knew it was 1.15 a.m. and all my friends know that i'm an early sleeper. the only thing that stopped me to read was the dull throbbing of my migraine.

i finished Eclipse in 1 night and 1 day. strangely though, after finishing Eclipse, i was ready to revise on the literary texts. and so i continued reading Fahrenheit 451. happy at last to be responsible and reasonable.

last night i started reading Breaking Dawn.... hehehe.
p.s. don't like Breaking Dawn. prefer Eclipse