Updating…

New obsession

I’m typing this in the dark. I should be in bed but I thought I should update.

New camera.

I’ve been playing with my new toy for a few weeks.

Nikon FM10. 35-70mm lens. Black & White Fujifilm Neopan 400.

I suck at learning cameras but I think I have a pretty good grasp of capturing pretty angles and subjects’ emotions. Sent my first roll of colour film for processing. Hope it turns out decent.

I’ve been very reliant on my DSLR’s auto-focus and sharp aperture settings.

I hope I’ll do good for the manual SLR too.

Metal teething.

I’m currently deciding on getting braces (ortho) after a long struggle with my protruding upper arch. Compared to other cases of bad teeth, mine seems like a  case of vainpot wanting to fulfill a childhood dream of getting aligned teeth. That’s what I was told by friends recently. Thinking back, I didn’t really wanted braces in my teens. The teeth issues probably surfaced when I started working and having enough money for my material needs. Why should I hold back if I have the financial ability? I’m just a little jittery that the dentist wants to pull out more teeth from me. i probably have less than 30 now! Dentures might be cheaper next time!

Growing Social.

After being in isolation and pretending to be emo for a period of time, I’ve come out of my zombie mode to hang out with friends again.

Had quite a few drinking sessions and caught up with my friends’ lives.

Started being critical of other people.

And becoming really conscious of staying sober when with guys.

Whipping out my Nikon to capture cute moments.

I can safely say I’m on the safe side of drinking.

Though the last session was a little too much on my pocket and some hands were everywhere.

The past still bothers me once in a blue moon but I’m very sure I’m over those days. 2 years and counting. I’m still hiding but not afraid anymore.

Office politics.

My boss had just tendered his resignation. I’m really happy for him. He deserves that major government offer that he has just gotten.

I’m not sure when I’m getting off. Maybe soon. I’ve sort of planned my route. I do want to work overseas in the coming year. It might be a little tough when the braces are fixed.

I’m feeling rather happy these days. 🙂

Up north! Malaysia road trip 2012!

I’m in the mood. I think I’ll share some photos from my road trip in Malaysia last Christmas. It was a short 5-day trip with my friends before I made another trip to Taipei to countdown to 2013 with my Taiwanese friends. No shots of faces will be shown.

Dear Europe, maybe next time.

I was on NY Times browsing for editorials when I came across an old article The 46 Places to Go in 2013. There were plenty of impressive images posted in the piece and I got interested in only a handful mentioned. It is weird to read that my country is also on the list. Not sure if I should be proud because my city clearly is more concrete than jungle. I have been traveling around Asia for the last few years and I just can’t get enough of them and Europe has not been on my list of to-go even though I have many friends who have visited and marveled at the cultures.

Incredible negative responses from natives

Parisian cats. Ah.

“Job crisis, money crisis.. blah” My ideal place to get married or have my honeymoon was Paris. Even if I were to head to Europe one day, I’ll skip the city and reserve it for the day. It will be great if my guy is a Paris ‘virgin’ too. I have read up on the multiple locations for beautiful aerial views of Paris’ landmarks and I am sure it will be great. But then… the French/ European rommies that I have met on the road have discouraged me on doing that. They would share that the French can’t wait to get out of the country and loads of negative stuff that is happening around. In fact, a few of them are constantly on the road in Asia and not returning home. These are the people who had lived in France their whole lives and only made it out after college. It puzzles me. I always miss Singapore whenever I travel for more than a week. My Mum’s dishes, the hawker fare (Gordon Ramsey just had a cooking challenge with our local cooks!) and high speed broadband. I recently got to know an Italian college girl in Nepal. She was the epitome of Italian food because every meal of hers consists of pasta and olive oil. I ROFL when she used olive oil to lubricate a creaking door hinge! She’s pretty, lively and the type of executive any boss would like but she has trouble getting an office job in Italy because she only has a bachelors degree(?!). I feel so bad right now. I should just go on and take up an MBA or be really grateful to my boss for giving me the job. So… the responses from fellow travelers about their home countries were not so favourable but not big enough to turn me off. *I just googled ‘Paris suburbs’ and most of the images were of strikes and smoke bombs. WTH?

5000 years of history

Fortifications of Xi`an: Never try scaling and walking it after a big chinese breakfast

Chinese history = 5000 years ++. I visited China for a three-city backpack and fell in love with the land of dragons. To add on, I had the best guides ever in friends who grew up there. The hospitality and warmth I have experienced was indescribable. As a Chinese, I always felt out of place for my poorly spoken mandarin. But in China, I was proud to demonstrate what I had learnt in Chinese classes, amusing some of the locals with my accent and sentences which was peppered with English. I am narcissistic to a certain degree and when a group of people love me, I love them back even more. China is a place I will love to live in, if given the opportunity. They have everything! I just love how rich in history the land is. Add in the neighbours India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and nearby SEA countries, I will never have time for Europe! I totally forgot about my favourite South Korea and its hermit kingdom bro! And awesome Thai massages.. list goes on.

Innate stubbornness

Just because many of my friends have toured Europe doesn’t mean I have to do it too. I would gladly take on Africa or North and South America any day. My finances aren’t that bad. Plus my Mum’s in a spending funk right now so I think I’ve gotten a potential sponsor. (Ha!) Having stubbornly denied Europe, I would still love to visit Paris and explore the Nordic region. It seems like rumours are true, the best looking people are the Scandinavians. (Ha! x 3) I’ve only met a few of them and I think all Caucasians look the same to me. Maybe a visit will prove me wrong.

What’s next

I am in the midst of planning a coastline railway tour of Vietnam in August/September, starting my journey from Hanoi. The tour will include the coastal cities of either Hue or Danang, and end at Ho Chi Minh City. I am buying my tickets ASAP. I saw this Royal Enfield bike tour available in Hanoi and I am totally psyched!

We shall see. Dear Europe, maybe next time.

WOAH!

Do anything I want when I grow up?

Aside

Sunset by Nagarkot

Well that was what my Mom told me when I was a child.

20 years on, I haven’t done ‘anything’ worthy to be called ‘something’. Le sigh.

Education: I passed all my GCEs, got my Bachelor’s . Not the best student around but at least I can spell and form sentences. Plus I know several languages thanks to my heritage and nationality.

Relationships: Blah. In and out.

Finances: Barely saved after 4 years of work. Bills bills and more bills 😦

Travel: Been backpacking yearly. I enjoy the solitude. Seen and photographed pretty sunsets and animals.

Friends: A nice group of friends. Though I realise I’m being nasty to some recently. Not nasty bad but bitchy. I’m blaming PMS. I’ll see how I can mend it.

Work: 2 jobs. First one sucked and I suffered physically and mentally. Second job now is the total opposite. Nice boss and environment. But I’m turning complacent so I need to start creating a goal list now.

If I were to rate my life till now, I’m a BLAH on a scale. To be born in a developed country and be given so many opportunities, I guess … I guess I should be achieving more.

For a getaway

Image

Back from Bangkok, Thailand.

Had tonnes of fun during the Songkran Festival. Now I get why Thailand was labelled the land of smiles. The Thais are pure friendly and nice. I think I need to get back soon.

 

Till then, Nepal is waiting for me in May and I haven’t got my supplies packed. Can’t wait to meet the kids again! The months spent in Nepal were probably the most enlightening for me.