Friday, December 31, 2010

10... 9... 8... 7... OMG I CANNOT WAIT, HAPPY NEW YEAR!

It's the last day of 2010, can you believe it? It feels like time zoomed past and I'm lost in the dust, totally disoriented and a bit lost. Looking back is a bit hard too, everything is a jumble of memories, colours, voices, too messy to see clearly. But one recurrent theme in my memories is laughter. And that's good, right? A year spent laughing is definitely something to be proud of.

In 2010,
 I took up guitar! Actually, no.
I cut my hair!
This guitar was merely a prop in my camwhore picture wtf.

I also had great times with friends!

I drank waaaay too much coffee. Procrastination is bad for you, people.

Did my bit for domestic violence!
 Not my best picture, but yeah. STOP DOMESTIC VIOLENCE!

Went for my first ever countdown
 with a truly awesome guy!

Had my first ever parasailing experience!
 Was scared shitless before we went up, but up there it was just... calm. I botched the landing though, sorry David!!

 But David isn't the grudge-holding type.

Have I mentioned spending 2010 having fun with friends? Cos I did, and I can't imagine any better way to spend my time.

Got my culture on at the Dewan Filharmonik Petronas, yo. It was awesome! Will go again cos there are cheap tickets sometimes, RM10 is totally affordable right!

Made new friends! In this case, David's friend Thaddeus (the tall guy, far right) who drove us to Seremban to visit Sasa (the short girl in white shorts =P).

Christmas party at Chrissy's with Ming! We may have scared him with our ability to talk non-stop. Ho ho ho!

And best of all, I spent 2010 having an awesome time with my family.
We've gone through ups and downs together, always bickering and making up but never ever letting any member go through shit alone. We've gone through my turbulent teenage years together, the soundtrack of those years being "YOU GUYS DON'T UNDERSTAND ME!", accompanied by tears and slammed doors. I've gotten older and wiser now, though, and my parents and I have forged bonds that are stronger than ever *cue happy tears*
But seriously. This year, more than ever, we've gotten closer. They are less my PARENTS and more my friends. Who tell me to clean my room and to be home before the sun rises. But you know, friends.

2011 is going to be just as awesome, if not more so!


Monday, December 27, 2010

It's Not Cradle-Robbing

if it's TRUE love!

Evidently, the secret to a successful marriage is matching COLOURS, not ages. My bad.

Hugh Hefner, long envied by men who dream of having their own big-boobied harems, is about to tie the knot for the third time to a girl only 2 years older than I am. And I'm pretty sure Hef was around when man invented the wheel.

Do you think he's saggy everywhere?

Saturday, December 25, 2010

'Tis The Season

It's Christmas!
 It's about 1 in the morning. I bet some of you have ripped the paper off the presents, admired your loot and are now getting ready to go to bed. Tomorrow morning, another batch of people will tear wrapping paper into shreds amidst shrieks of glee (and maybe groans of disappointment at yet another pair of socks). Then it's off to church, and then Christmas lunch/dinner/teatime/supper with friends/relatives/church members/people you don't even know at all. And then bedtime. And then it's the next day.

Amid all the madness and merriment of the holiday season, take some time to remember the foundation of Christmas - giving. Whether you want to come at it from a Jesus angle or a Santa one, it's all about giving. And it doesn't have to be pressies! Give yourself, and your time, to others. DON'T SPEND CHRISTMAS TWEETING, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD AND ALL THAT'S HOLY. OR FACEBOOKING, FOR THAT MATTER. Put that phone down and talk to the auntie sitting across the table from you. Make friends with the random stranger you're seated beside. Glare at the annoying kid who keeps asking you for a pressie. 

Your time is probably the most precious thing you can give to those who love you.
Merry Christmas, ho ho ho!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Fa La La

It's almost Christmas!
As I worship at Santa's altars of consumerism in a frenzy of "BUY BUY BUYYYY!!", I - heck, all of us - get the opportunity to listen to a whole host of Christmas songs, from the Santa sort to the Baby Jesus sort. On repeat. Until you drive home with the sound of bells going 'ching ching ching' in your head and you look half-crazed.

But there's hope!

Here's a really awesome song that helped me recover: there's no fat guy in a suit nor baby in a manger, no presents, no over-enthusiastic singing, and no Glo-ooooo-oooo-ooooo-riaaaaaaa.
Just what, in my romance-fed mind, sounds like the best part of winter: a snowstorm outside, a fire inside, wine, music and two people getting their flirt on. Yum.

It's Lady Antebellum, but there are loads of other versions of this song. I like this the best though.. I'm quite biased towards country songs, heh. I first heard this song on Glee, but figured not everyone would want to listen to a lomantik song sung by two guys. 

I really can't stay
Baby, it's cold outside
I've got to go 'way
Baby, it's cold out outside
This evening has been
Been hoping that you'd drop in
So very nice
I'll hold your hands, they're just like ice

My mother will start to worry
Beautiful what's you're hurry
And father will be pacing the floor
Just listen to that fireplace roar
Now really I'd better scurry
Sweetheart, what's your hurry
Well, maybe just a half a drink more
Why don't you put some records on while I pour

And the neighbors might think
Baby It's bad out there
Say what's in this drink?
No cabs to be had out there
I wish i knew how
Your eyes are like starlight now
To break the spell
I'll take your hat, your hair looks swell

I ought to say no, no, no sir
Mind if I move in closer?
At least I'm gonna say that i tried
What's the sense of hurtin' my pride?
I really can't stay
Baby don't hold out
Oh but it's cold outside
Oh but it's cold outside

I simply must go
Baby It's cold outside
The answer is no
But baby it's cold out outside
This welcome has been
So lucky that you dropped in
So nice and warm
Look out that window at that storm

My sister will be suspicious
Gosh your lips look delicious
My brother will be there at the door
Waves upon a tropical Shore
My maiden aunt's mind is vicious
Oh, Baby you're so delicious
Maybe just one little kiss more
Never such a blizzard before

Oh I've got to go home
You'll freeze to the bone out there
Hey, lend me your coat
It's up to your knees out there
You've really been grand
I thrill when you touch my hand
But don't you see
How can you do this thing to me

There's bound to be talk tomorrow
Think of my lifelong sorrow
At least there will be plenty implied
If you caught pneumonia and died
I really can't stay
Get over that old out
Oh but it's cold outside
Oh but it's cold outside

It is kind of chilly
Just stay right here, Baby
You ain't gotta be nowhere
Alright, you win

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Don't jump, you selfish - Great. NOW what?

I'm probably going to get flak for this, but I just need to say that suicide is essentially a very self-serving course of action. I totally understand that a person who contemplates suicide is one who is utterly desperate and unable to see any way out of the bleak situation he's in. But does he stop to consider the effect of his death on other people? 
The mother who killed herself in spite of her ten-year-old child's pleadings. Did she stop to think of the emotional scars that kid will bear for the rest of his or her life? At ten, her child now has a host of abandonment issues that will probably screw up the way he or she interacts with people. Nice going, Mom.
The 45-minute suicide countdown guy. His ex is probably going to feel shitty forever (actually I'm pretty sure he meant to make her feel bad for dumping him), all because she decided to end their four-month relationship. And his sister, who took him seriously but was reassured (by him!) that he was only joking: what about her? She's going to have emotional issues that seriously outweigh getting dumped by a gf of four - FOUR! - months.

I know the general reaction to death, whether natural or forced, is sympathy and sadness. The deceased is described in glowing terms, any flaws are glossed over and photoshopped. But seriously, in certain cases, it's the plain truth to say that the dead person is dead because of selfishness.


The person who kills himself over loansharks: who has to pick up the tab? His family members. And they didn't even apply for the loan. Who gets the red paint? His wife. His parents. His brother. Who doesn't get their money back? The loansharks (ok, I know they're illegal and ruthless, but sometimes I feel sorry for them). Who gets off scot-free? The dead person.
The person who leaps off a building because her husband dumped her for another woman: she didn't write a will. Her cheating asshole husband got everything, and nothing went to her son. Who, by the way, is now living with relatives because his cheating asshole dad would rather partay with his mistress using his late wife's money. Where's his mother who should be there to comfort him in his fatherless state?
Oh right.

I'm saying before reaching for that bottle of pills or the razor or opening that window up on the 20th floor, people should think of the people who would be devastated by their deaths. By the messes left behind. I mean, yeah, for the dead person, things can only get better. All HIS problems end with his death. Loansharks can't follow you over to the other side and threaten you. Your heart can't be broken after it stops beating. But his problems continue for the people they leave behind. And for those left behind, things CAN get worse.

 All things said, people who contemplate euthanasia are not included in this rant. Nor are people who are tortured in abusive homes. Although the latter should try running away to shelters and seeking help, especially if they have children who need them.

If you ever reach a point in your life where everything seems shitty and dark, reach out to others for help. Seriously. You may think you're alone but I'm sure that there are people who care about you. Or contact the Befrienders if you want somebody to talk to but prefer to stay anonymous. They are non-judgmental, will never bocor your secrets to the world, and best of all, don't even know who you are.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Getting High

Remember Cameron Highlands? When was the last time you went up? The last time I went, my age could be counted in single digits, and I was wearing clothes from Kiki Lala. So the parental unit decided it's time to go again since my brother has never been up there, that poor untravelled soul.

So we woke up at the ungodly hour of 6 in the frickin MORNING.
 Look at that sky. The last time I saw it that colour, I was an Upper Sixer o.O God, I feel positively ancient. Has it really been THREE years?

 Look at that gorgeous sky! Watching the sun rise is awesome.

 We stopped by the small town of Bidor to eat the famous duck noodles.

 Not sure if the dim sum is famous too, but heck we were hungry! Makan only!

 The duck noodles - wantan mee-type noodles and duck in herbal soup. Not bad! My mum was grumpy over the lack of veggie though. "Wah, not even one leaf?!"

It's duck noodles, not veggie noodles, mum... But I got her point.

 The sun was shining, the sky was blue, 

 ... the telephone pole was straight and majestic.
This was supposed to be a shot of the hills. It turned out to be a shot of a pole, with some hills at the back.
The worst thing is: I took three attempts, AND ALL THREE HAVE A POLE SMACK IN THE CENTRE OF THE PICTURE! wtf. I gave up after that. This is the nicest pole picture. Enjoy. =(

 We made a detour to check out this waterfall! Lots of people merrily splashing around, but not being the most nature-loving people, we stayed dry and took pictures instead.

 Daddy, Mummy, Ah Boy and me! Our ONLY all-in-one picture.

A windy ride later (windows down, woohoo!), we arrived at our hotel, Bala's Holiday Chalet.
 As you can see, it is absolutely quaint and full of English charm! The name is a little incongruous in the rustic Tudor-cottage-esque surroundings, but Bala's is a simply gorgeous hotel.

 Super awesome for photo ops!

 We got a suite, which is SUPER CUTE! Look at it! It's in a terraced row of cottages! The one we got is for four people, so it has two queen-sized beds, one on the ground floor, another in the loft above. Some suites are for two, so the loft is a charming little sitting room with a sofa. This row of suites is above the main building (where there are other suites and rooms as well)), and is accessible by a pretty steep flight of stairs. Not good for older people, and HORRIBLE if you've got tonnes of luggage. No worries, the other suites and rooms are pretty accessible!

 But these suites are awesome.

 Daddy playing 'Lord of the Manor' in the cozy wing chair.

 The loft upstairs is right under the roof! The floor is wooden, and if you sit downstairs and listen to people walk around upstairs, it sounds like a herd of elephants stampeding around. A bit heart-stopping, to be honest!

 The dining area in the main building, all decked out for Christmas. The fireplace is lit at night! Talk about atmosphere.

 Prowling the grounds, I came across this sign. Bearing in mind the building used to be a boarding school for the children of the English people posted here, I wonder who Fredy is and where he is now.

After a rainy, ass-freezing night (I was smart enough to pack a long-sleeved t-shirt, but apparently my smartness stops there because I packed SHORTS bloody hell) spent curled up in a ball under the cozy blankets half-afraid to move cos to stick a limb out of my warm nest was to get immediate frostbite, we woke up bright and early to have breakfast in the Boh tea plantation.

We thought "Ah, what can be better than sipping hot tea and nibbling on scones, overlooking the lush green splendour of a plantation?"

You see, the problem was: to get to the hot tea, scones and panoramic view, first we had to climb UP.
In the misty, windy cold.
On empty tanks.
 You see the glass structure on top of the hill? That's the cafe.

 Unfazed, the parents set off.

Thank goodness, the slightly slippery dirt path soon made way for proper steps.
 Unfortunately, the steps later gave way to

TREE ROOTS, I ask you.

 Shivering, hungry May Lee, wrapped in a scarf and pashmina and yet still feeling a chill, was NOT amused.

 Once we got to the top, though, we were like "Waaaaaahhhhhhh"
It's really pretty! The glass walls ensure green as far as the eye can see.


After stuffing our faces with scones, pies, cakes and cups of hot HOT tea, we thawed out enough to take pictures! Well, I thawed out. My dad and brother were being all manly and "Pffft. What cold? Like this also cold? Cheh! What la you. Not TOUGH."
Whatever, guys. I know you were sekkretly shivering.


 THIS, my dear readers, is a brass rolling table thingy.

 And THIS is the machine in which the brass roller thing.. well.. rolls. The tea. To make it.. uh.. squashed.
Sorry, I suck. =(
Oooh I do know ONE thing! It's positively ancient - it was new in the 30's - but they still use it to produce tea! Wtf right? After all this time, they still haven't come up with more techy machines to produce tea? Where is the touchscreen LCD screen? Where are the streamlined chrome bits? I bet it doesn't even have a 128 kb memory stick! 


 Found a scenic route down that didn't have tree roots as steps!
It's actually a road for taxis and stuff. Since there weren't many taxis, we were totally strolling down the middle of the road. And taking pictures!

And what is Camerons without flowers, right? I took LOTS of pictures of flowers, but I figured I wouldn't spam this post with boring botanical pictures. So here are a couple, instead.

 These trumpet flowers are EVERYWHERE. Like seriously.

Well I guess this is it. We didn't go to any strawberry farms, although we did snigger at some signs that said "SELF-PLUCKING STRAWBERRY FARM". I guess we prefer our strawberries on dishes, with melted chocolate, ala Vanilla Place in Empire.

P/S: The lady boss owner of Bala's is really quite rude. Note to all service industry people, do try not to speak in a language your guests do not understand. It's awkward to be halfway talking to you, and then you turn away to shout in Tamil at some person across the hall. And also, don't EVER call me "Hallo", as in "Excuse, excuse! Hallo! The dining room isn't open yet!".