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Sep. 21st, 2011

the day i was kept alive

you see that happening in the movies, and you scoff at your friends whenever they suggest that something similar might happen to you.

now, think again.

from what little i could remember from the accident, my vehicle suddenly swerved to the left. i counter-steered to my right in order to avoid the car from moving to the other lane, and then suddenly, i lost control of my car. i think the car hit the divider, spun twice and came to a sudden standstill on lane three. as my car rolled (against traffic direction) towards the divider, i think i experienced a 'okay so i'm still alive' and 'o.m.g. the car is so gone' moment.

as the car spun wildly along the expressway, i guess i literally saw my life flash by. i remember feeling absolutely helpless, distraught and just hoping that i could somehow survive this ordeal.

as i came out of my car, i was surprised at how there was no screaming man or crying baby. i was half expecting my accident to result in someone else's personal tragedy, because it would be unrealistic to expect your car as the only car on the expressway during the mid-day traffic. yet somehow the impossible happened - no one was hurt. not even myself.

lessons. traumatic events like these usually bring with them incredible life lessons that you will hopefully heed. in my case, apart from a newfound inspiration to drive really really slow, its the cliched awakening of how great it is to be alive.

i think about how glad i am to be still typing this note on my macbook, and i shudder at the thought of how i could actually be somewhere else in a less than healthy state.

there must be a reason why i was kept alive. its now my job to find out why.

Jun. 28th, 2011

this year in london

and so it has finally come to this - my second last day in london. as i indulge in the absurd gravity of doing absolutely nothing in my second-last afternoon in london, i thought that it'll be nice to pen down some thoughts about my year-long (okay, nine months) stay in this city.

and its always better to do so now instead of trying to be nostalgic about it all tomorrow, when the last minuteness of packing and moving engulfs you in its entirety.

so - we all know that departures are always bittersweet, and while i'm really looking forward to home, it is equally important to review this past year in earnest and appreciate the lessons taught and learnt, the friendships that i've made and strengthened, and the memories that i'll will most certainly cherish.

intellectually, it has been a great year. i've been in the company of great minds, and have definitely benefited from the guidance of my professors in school. lse really isn't the london school of 'entertainment' - my experiences haven't exactly been a stroll in the park. if not for the generous note sharing and assistance from my many classmates, the process would have been definitely much more painful and arduous. for someone who a year ago hardly had a clue about what he could do and had no niche area in the field of international history, i ended up being overly infatuated with my american public opinion and its impact on foreign policy. by having a niche area, it really gives you renewed hope in the very reason why you want to study history, and what you can do in the process of knowledge transfer and creation. i'm sure this will guide me in my future endeavors as i seek to become not just a better teacher, but also to learn with more humility.

with my coursemates, it has been a challenging period of intellectual sparring. the countless stacks of readings that we've had to go through week in and week out, the many essays that we have had to do (even when it counted for zilch toward our final grade), and the presentations with the extremely feared Q&A sessions. i guess the entire process would have been much more mundane without you people, whether it is to answer dr casey's very straightforward questions, or to attempt to respond to simon-led discussions in hy463. regardless of where you guys will be in the future, i'll always remember our 'regular' seating arrangement in the hy422 classroom, the end-of-term drinks at the george, and our nice dimsum/goldmine trips together. i wish you all the best as you move on to your future careers or to continue your ambitious climbs up the realm of phd academia.

in terms of personal relationships, its been a productive year in london too. i've learnt much more about the friends i've already had and realized how big a difference a good cook can make to your otherwise plain-tasting meal-life. i've discovered the joys of hobnobs, prima-taste packs and the hundred different ways you could use minced pork in dishes. unfortunately, i have also been resigned to the fact that my kitchen niche lies mainly in rice-cooking and dishwashing.

i am also glad to have met new friends in london. yes, they are mostly singaporeans because i derive my innermost comforts from being able to use my singlish, dialect and talk freely about how wonderful singapore is with my fellow countryman and woman. right. one of my biggest blessings this year must be the many nice people i've encountered in school, and with their sincere friendships, they have been a great source of joy and laughter. i'll always keep close to my heart the cafe-hunting trips with you, the late night chat at your farewell party, being invited to your household for dinners, meals at misato/c&r/goldmine/wongkei/bella italia with you, benefitting from the very generous 50% taste card discount while eating at great restaurants with you, brunches at lantana with you, emotional conversations (about you) with you, meal outings with a whole bunch of you....there are so much 'you-s' that matter to me during my time in london that it seems weird to have to name all of you in this note! but suffice to know that i've enjoyed my time in london with each and everyone of you, and i will really hope to be able to keep in touch with all of you.

this past year, i've done my fair share of travels too. i've rediscovered new york in the most wonderful of ways, scaled arthur's seat with jieyi, and fell in love with budapest food. in my many escapades away from london, i've been amazed by how beautiful and antiquated some parts of europe can be, and i'm greatful to have had the good fortune to experience in the way i did. trier ranks highly amongst the many short getaways i've taken, and guojun, katrin and tina deserves all the credit they are due. besides having the company of a familiar face and new found friends, its been a great three days living life in a small german town, with great food and hospitality, student bars and beers, and a mind-blowing movie (inception!) to boot. it was a great time catching up with an old friend, manchi, during our trip to porto as well. and who can forget the kick-ass amsterdam strip with joseph, shan and shaggy, and meeting up with weiying in rome!

as i sit in my room wondering about how the next few months of my life is going to pan out, i have every reason to look at back my year in london with a huge sense of accomplishment. it might not have been the city that i've grown to love the most, but i've certainly had a heck of a year here with you guys.

it has really been a great year, my friends. and i will need to thank each and everyone of you for that.

Nov. 14th, 2010

(no subject)

seriously, how much more do i need to do?

Oct. 30th, 2010

you want it, you got it.

you really don't need to go through all the trouble to do what you did. just say it, and i'm sure things will come to pass.

regardless - you want it, you got it.

now, fuck off.

Dec. 21st, 2009

11 dec, 2009

and so, a new journey begins :)

Sep. 7th, 2009

seven months on

and opening the folder entitled 'exchange photos' can still be so painful.

i had intended to write one huge post with how terrible i feel right now, but i know the words won't do justice, no, not at all. they just won't do.

this just won't do.

Aug. 31st, 2009

i just want to find a hole and hide

what a fucked up blockhead. yes, thats me.

Aug. 13th, 2009

two things

number one - you can't please the world, so screw it.

number two - i'm giving you the break so that you can go study. if you are really so deperate to step up for something else, then just go do it. afterall, you've already made your decision, so i don't need you to go through an act of reassurance in front of me, trying to rationalise things in front of me and worse still, tell me that stepping up for this particular position has been something that you had thought about. stop that facade, its getting quite irritating.

ah yes, i'm rather angsty these days. fuck it.

Aug. 10th, 2009


fall into this pithole again. stop thinking the unthinkable, get embroiled in things you shouldnt even touch, and more importantly, get involved with in relationships that you shouldn't be getting into in the very first place.

as it stands now, there's no future in all These. no future - get it?

Aug. 3rd, 2009

(no subject)

just because you people did something for three long months doesn't give you the right to stick together and be exclusive in my block activity.

farking bullshit.

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