Saturday, December 30, 2006
it's like a 50 first dates scenario, where i wake up and feel like screaming, coz am pretty much scared and doubtful about everything.. sleep is a comfort. i wanna burrow back under the covers and get lost in my dreams where everything's easy and even if it turns out to be a nightmare, heck it's only a dream and i'll soon wake up from it.
but waking up to reality.. man.. that's a scenario that if viewed from a certain perspective, is more haunting than your scariest nightmare.
and then i play my music and i remind myself about the one truth that matters: god loves me. it's christ in me the hope of glory. god's on my side. it's gonna be okay, it will. just. breathe. and get your ass movin.
and it's all fine and i'm happy and at peace again in the comforting knowledge of amazing grace..
it's almost a daily struggle (especially lately) that it's not funny.. but i think im getting better at reducing the time between feelings of hopelessness and "let's get moving baby and feel free to change the world.."
but it also hits me throughout the day.. especially when i think (too much) about my deadlines and what's ahead next year, i get these panic attacks..
and it's like, ok god, heeellpppppp...
was browsing through some notes that i took during church about a month ago when scott wilson was in town. he was talking about how most people feel, act and then think, but how we should think, understand, get wisdom to act, and then adjust our feelings accordingly. in other words, we act our way into our feelings, instead of acting how we feel.
one of those "easy to preach, hard to do" kinda scenarios hey.. but i guess everybody goes through it and it's an act of faith to be thankful despite the overwhelming negative feelings.
besides, feelings come and go, hence proving to be a pretty shaky foundation to allow our lives to be based upon..
oooo reminds me of matt redman's song:
"every blessing you pour out
i'll turn back to praise
when the darkness closes in, god
still I will say: blessed be the name of the lord.."
anyways, i've been reading the psalms again.. really good stuff. definitely in-season. will blog more about that later.
also flew the london eye earlier today. had a ticket that was expiring on the 31st of december so after obssessing about who to give it to for days, finally decided (in typical last minute fashion) to just get my ass down there and just do it.. the last time i rode the eye was with gail, danz and edmond, but that was during the day. this time around, it was london at night and wow, it was worth the (rather short) walk and (not so) lengthy queue. :) the night was clear, i could see right up to (what i suspect is) putney, and westmister was shimmering gold.. ahhhh.. and the higher it went, the better the view became. all the usual suspects were there: st paul's, the bridges, the gherkin, hyde park, centre point, telecom towers, ben, nelson, etc.. hmm.. i can't remember if tower bridge was there.. but in any case, definitely a view to remember, tuck away, and bring to mind next time to ubat future london rindu. :)
meanwhile, there's a party tomorrow to prepare for.. and tank rides.. (yes you read correctly, TANK RIDES.. yes yes, ARMY TANK RIDES with a real Major. hehe) and people to catch up with.. and good conversation to be had, and plenty more surprises.. and so, i should sleep now..
and in case i don't get to blog before the year is over, here's wishing everyone a great year ahead.. :)
coz the best is yet to come..
and you better believe it.
Thursday, December 28, 2006
Wednesday, December 27, 2006
Monday, December 25, 2006
Thursday, December 21, 2006
Wednesday, December 20, 2006
The truth of the matter is, we all come to prayer with a tangled mass of motives - altrusitic and selfish, merciful and hateful, loving and bitter. Frankly, this side of eternity we will never unravel the good from the bad, the pure from the impure. but what I have come to see is that God is big enough to receive us with all our mixture. We do not have to be bright, or pure, or filled with faith, or anything. That is what grace means, and not only are we saved my grace, we live by it as well. And we pray by it.
from Richard Foster (1992) - "Prayer: Finding the heart's true home"
True, whole prayer is nothing but love - St. Augustine
wahhaahh.. cool hey. so the biggest birthday surprise of them all was when gail turned up unexpectedly at my door and yelled "Surprise!" So yea, it gets betterrrr.. she's spending christmas here as well.. yeahhh... woohooo.. hahahaha..lol... mwahahaha.. best ever.
i think i should return to the gym!
Date: Dec 19, 2006 11:45 AM
Subject: happy twenty-five me!
dear family (both biological and non),
hello from london!! :)
i turn 25 today.
thanks for all the well-wishes (both real and imagined).. hehe. wish
you all were here coz im throwing a party tonight in my room and it'd
be great if you all could be here..
but since you can't, let me just say, that 25 is rocking, i'm thankful
to be alive and living in the most happening city in the world...
blessed in every area.. God has been so so good.. and bring on the
next 25 years, coz i think it'll only get better.. heheh..
so here's to a quarter-life celebration!
im on christmas vacation now. have a bit of a sore throat and slight
fever actually.. it has been a really really long term.. and the past
few weeks were just madness jumping from one activity to another..
but birthdays are good to slow down and have some mindless fun hey. my friend and i are going to check out the leicester square fun fair and try our best to win a huge soft toy. (huge = about 3 feet). :D (uncle peter and i went last week but was unsuccessful in our quest.)
so it's all good. :)
have a great christmas yea, even as we take time to remember the God
who came down to dwell among us..
love to all,
Monday, December 18, 2006
Monday, December 11, 2006
flew back saturday morning straight into preparing for our church's connect group christmas party. it was quite amazing.. beautiful decorations, yummy food, and all around super atmosphere and people. We had no program but the party just assumed a life of its own.. the best part was when the people started limbo-rocking and dancing.. :) it was truly a night to remember. i love the guys in my life.. When i say jump, they ask, how high? heheheh.. it was too good to be true man.. i love my church.. if you haven't already gathered by now.. it's the best thing in london. :)
now that all the fun is over, i'm getting back to school work and sorting out priorities. oh for wisdom from above!
have quite the week coming up: uncle pete down on weds/thurs, graduation on thursday, connect group on thursday, essay deadline on friday, party on friday night in putney, possible breakfast on saturday.. and i kinda need to catch up on sleep as well. december is by far my favourite month, always.
something interesting that i read in the toilet this morning:
"For what we need to know, of course, is not just that God exists, not just that beyond the steely brightness of the stars there is a cosmic intelligence of some kind that keeps the whole show going, but that there is a God right here in the thick of our day-by-day lives who may not be writing messages about himself in the stars but in one way or another is trying to get messages through our blindness as we move around down here knee-deep in the fragrant muck and misery and marvel of the world. It is not objective proof of God's existence that we want but the experience of God's presence. That is the miracle that we are really after, and that is also, I think, the miracle that we really get." - Frederick Buechner
cool hey. :)
have a great month everyone!
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Friday, November 24, 2006
and coming back from church i was so hungry i could eat a horse and raj was so kind he gave me some food which i heated up and ate with rice from my neighbour mili. also had cake from girish and agar agar from another neighbour whose name i had forgotten but mannnnn... i'm blessed beyond belief.
Yea it's been quite the two months so far. God has just been so great.. Bankside has been such da bomb..everything and more.. and i just love it, love it all.
I just need to get my research proposal moving. i'm quite looking forward to the whole thing actually. anthropology rocks.
coming up: ski holiday!! watch this space. :D
Monday, November 13, 2006
and everything about you makes me smile. :D
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
i've never been as happy to be here than now. now now now is the new
day. now is da time. and even though certain things (such as school)
could be a lot better, I have more things to be thankful for than to
complain about. good friends, good neighbours, good workmates, good
teachers (kinda..), and don't forget, that you are the disciple whom Jesus loves.
Friday, October 13, 2006
in your presence
thinking of the good things you have done
just to hear your still small voice again
faithful to the end
redeemer and friend"
- For who you are, by Marty Sampson
(it sounds better with the music)
Monday, October 02, 2006
had indian buffet today.
seet yuan came to visit for the weekend. daniel's coming tomorrow (or today).
term starts tomorrow (or today).
i have no jobs pending. how wonderful that feeling. (soon to be gone tomorrow.. or today).
i'm quite broke. hehe.
also quite happy.
and all that.
heard stu g live.
life is so short!
Friday, September 22, 2006
forgetting what my life has cost
wipe away the crimson stains
that dull the nails that still remain
more and more i need you now
i owe you more each passing hour
the battle between grace and pride
i gave up not so long ago
so steal my heart and take the pain
and wash the feet and clense my pride
take the selfish, take the weak
and all the things i cannot hide
take the beauty take my tears
the sin-soaked heart and make it yours
take my world all apart
take it now, take it now
and serve the ones that I despise
speak the words I can't deny
watch the world I used to love
fall to dust and thrown away
I look beyond the empty cross
forgetting what my life has cost
so wipe away the crimson stains
and dull the nails that still remain
so steal my heart and take the pain
take the selfish, take the weak
and all the things I cannot hide
take the beauty, take my tears
take my world apart, take my world apart
I pray, I pray, I pray
take my world apart
- jars of clay
Saturday, September 09, 2006
so, i'm now in the basement of the school's old building. it stinks here coz it's near the gym and locker rooms.. like musky sweaty testosterone smell.. eww. speaking of which, im thinking of joining a gym. Gym Box, to be exact. only it's gonna cost too much.. :P :)
meanwhile, i handed in my dissertation on time last thursday and it's been too much fun not living in anticipation of crucial deadlines. just moved into new place at bankside. am the *shudder* subwarden of the hall.. haha.. but the students are not in yet so im just basically living there without working, for now, coz the place is being turned into a motel so there's all these random people walking around. im quite anonymous and unknown in the building.. which is too much fun. :)
also started this other webct job which is keeping me busy.. although i havent really put any work into it yet..
my hdd is sick. it's making weird noises and working really slowly. takes me half an hour of coaxing to start it up. have to reboot few times before it actually moves into "starting mac os x mode" so im a little worried. waiting for tech support who'll hopefully come on friday..
i bought a new rug for my room. £20 from gumtree.com. i like my new place. i thought last year's covent garden was pretty unbeatable, but then i took a walk along the waterfront at night from london bridge to my place and my gosh, the view was gorgeous. could see st pauls, lights from the bridges, the city up north, ships, wind, smelly water, whole works. :) too cool. it's just a whole different atmosphere down by the river (as compared to theatreland), and i.love.it.as.much.as.i.did.the.old.place.. :D
have couple of weeks before week-long pre-sessional quantitative methods on the 20th and then term on the 27th (i think?) and then beginning october it'll be crazy until december..
so am taking it easy, relaxing, and thanking god for today, coz vasu's gonna help me move my old stuff from storage at his shop to my new place. and he's gonna loan me his small tv (with in built dvd player) and mini mini fridge for my room, to last me the whole year.
come visit. my room's huge. and now that i've the tv, fridge, rug, er.. that's it? maybe a sofa in the future, and christmas lights, it's gonna be quite the pad.
Tuesday, August 01, 2006
it was kinda running away from a very territorial cat.
it looked at me, i tried to get it to come so i could pet it.
but it doesn't respond to doggie calls. instead, it ran down bedford avenue, looking so frightened and vulnerable that i wanted to tangkap dan bungkus back to my room, give it a warm bath, fluffy towels, tuck it nicely to bed and feed it hot chocolate.
this is the second fox i've seen on the streets here in london. :)
Monday, July 31, 2006
this was when gail and i stood in line that sunday to get into church for united live. we arrived at the dominion at 4 meaning to get into the 4:30 service, but ended up queing for the 6:45 service instead.
if you zoom really closely, you can see joel houston right in the centre and marty sampson on his right.
it was totally worth it. the queue, the heat, the exam the next day... wowww.. all good stuff... can still hear marty sampson's pseudo-martin smith voice "swinggg lowwww....." in my head.. :D
and when aunty wai visits oriental city, it's like a celebrity making an entrance..
she'll wave at everybody and say hi to someone every 2 seconds.. and i get introduced as her "kai lui" (god-dotter)
too much fun. :D
anyways, i was returning from the korean store with my food when i saw the letter on the table. apparently it got mailed to her house a few weeks ago and she had left a message on gail's voice mail which i couldn't check coz her line got barred.. since then, she had been carrying it in her handbag with the hope of meeting me.. not knowing its contents... and me happily unaware of its existance.. (coz i was expecting something of that nature only in mid-august..)
so i opened the nondescript-looking envelope, and voila, inside was a letter from the financial office saying that the school's gonna give me a research studentship which will cover 90% of my incredibly expensive tuition fee for a year.
groovy hey.. so i now have a place to stay, have tuition (for the year at least) taken care of.. kinda.. yeah it's taken care of.. and a job when i return in september at my favourite photo developing centre on kingsway. heheh. is that great or is that great?
aunty wai thought at first that it was for 1,000 quid.. and then she found out that it was 10,000quid after examining it closer and almost fell out of her chair. the guy next to us, eating noodles, looked in our direction and said approvingly, "wow.. that's really good..that's a good skolarship", the guy behind us texting on his phone was staring and smiling at both of us.. and the family next to us were complaining loudly in cantonese that the food didn't have enough soy sauce. me, i was just sitting there finding it all quite amusing while practising my fake english accent (and manners) with aunty wai.
so anyways, i appear to be quite set for the year... god's so taking care of me and everything's so falling into place i'm quite in awe to the point that i'm just like wow.. ok god.. work your magic again.. i'm not even gonna think too much about it. hehhhehh... thanks to those who have prayed and been so supportive. this is as much yours as it is mine. then again, i don't really feel like it's mine. it's a strange love-hate attachment that i feel towards my studies... sometimes.. (maybe coz i sometimes think that it's all quite alotta bullshit.. ok that's not entirely true.. but it's not easy to do meaningful anthropology and you do end up reading quite some bs.)
but whattodo hey, it's been entrusted to me in the meantime. so rilek dan minum dulu.
and by the way, did i mention that
I CAN'T WAIT TO GO HOME!! TOMORROW WON'T COME SOON ENOUGH!!! WAAAAAILLLLLLLLLLLLL!!~! *sob
Sunday, July 30, 2006
Saturday, July 29, 2006
just spent the day with my uncle, aunt and cousin whom i've not met in over 10 years.. was surprised we still recognized each other. my aunt kept getting me and abigail mixed up and we had to tell her a few times that she was indeed talking to g. lol. they were too sweet.. took me shopping, told me old stories about my mom and her london years, and helped filled up the missing gap in mom's family history. tough life and i guess every parent want more than they ever had for their kids.. and i think my mom's the same as well. with what she knew and what she had and what she could dream about, she perhaps dreamt for us, in her own way... and i am grateful. i think the older i get the more i realize how human my parents are, and how hard they try the best they knew how to. and i think that's all we can ever aspire too.. doing the best we can, making things up as we go along.. coz there is no prescribed mode of happiness, is there? there's no set one way to live as well.. with some heavenly butt-kicking along the way, the best we can do is to do the best we can. lol. talk about a circular sentence that..
and so how ya.. one life to live, one chance to make it, multiple chances to screw up or to take breaks along the way.. or to call a time-out halfway through this long long race.. in the end, may it all count towards something. if not, might as well die now hey.
may his grace be sufficient for you.
he has led us by fire and by cloud
to bring us to zion
his praises to sing
o blessed be God
he has sheltered under his wings
and he's planned every path that we trod
he will bring us to zion
to look on his face
o blessed be God
Thursday, July 27, 2006
Wednesday, July 26, 2006
Sunday, July 23, 2006
Friday, July 21, 2006
-C.S. Lewis The Weight of Glory
Wednesday, July 19, 2006
got an essay result back today.. glad my professor liked it coz by the time i was due to hand it in, i had already read it a million times and was ready to rip it apart and start over.. :)
meanwhile, am exploring other horizons..
Sunday, July 09, 2006
also met some incredible people by just hanging out on houghton street in school last week with the usual black suspects. had my boss's brand new Canon 30D with me and managed to capture howard davis on a bicycle.. met e from nigeria and we had the most bizzare conversation about a lot of nonsense which got crazier after finding out that we both attended hillsong. hehhehh.. brought him to connect group with me after bumping to him again in school just before i was heading off to waterloo last thursday.
saw tosca and turandot at the roh on monday and friday. turandot especially was pretty amazing.. imagine an italian opera, set in imperial china, playing in london... cool hey.. talk about cosmopolitanism. this monday, will be going for a turandot singalong at the royal opera house with kavita. have not been to one of those before so will be quite the experience singing nessum dorma with a bunch of other crazy people. :D
had dinner with friend from filipins now in london, marcel, and his friends today. brought them to my favourite chinatown restaurant which they all adored and declared their most favourite place to eat as well, and then we went walking around soho, covent garden and the west end. london's too lovely in summer coz it doesn't get dark till about 10 and even then, the night is bright. and the weather is just perfect..
so this week feels like a series of divine connections.. god's grace is just so super amazing and i'm just living this life not really thinking or in hyper-planning mode, but just..chilling.
flight's booked home for august 1st and i will be back in september. i'm calling things that are not as though they are.. coz nothing major's confirmed yet except the place on the phd programme and a place to live at bankside. oh and a job at my favourite kingsway shop. :)
london's beginning to feel like home.. as in, it's not as intimidating or unfriendly as it was when i first got here.. now i feel more ownership towards it.. if that makes any sense.
then again nothing much makes sense at 2:50 in the morning. problem was i slept in the afternoon today after cleaning the kitchen and the bathroom.. so sleeping pattern's a bit skewed. oh i went running at regent's park last thurs at 7am.. which is unusual behavior but i couldn't help it coz the sun was out and sleeping seemed like a waste of time. it's only been my second time there (coz st james park was closer to previous residence). it's so pretty though and apparently the roses are in bloom but i couldnt find any so i'm definitely going back. they're probably located at another section of the park.
also reading a few books simultaneously for dissertation. i figured i gotta write about 500 words a day over a period of 20 days to finish the thing before going home. the writing part isn't difficult.. i firstly just need to know clearly what i wanna say.. which is the tough part. need another miracle hey..:)
Saturday, July 01, 2006
so sad to leave.. it's been too much fun here, definitely made sweeter by friends from home who were here to visit!! :)
i'm moving two blocks up to holborn into a flat with three english blokes. it's gonna be a bit tricky coz i'm subletting from the 4th english bloke who didn't tell his housemates that i was gonna move in, and didn't tell his landlady either.. so he's in trouble with them and her.. and one of the housemates told me that i'm in danger of being evicted..lol. but the housemates i've met so far are pretty nice and we get along and i think we even like each other (as people). they're decent final year lse students.. and i'm like the best flatmate anybody will ever get.. :) besides, i just want a place for a month to go to work at my photoshop on kingsway and church at tottenham court road and write my dissertation at nights and the location of that flat is so perfect i dont wanna move out or be evicted. so, keep praying for a peacable solution!! :) anyhow i'm gonna be there tomorrow and they can't get rid of me even if they wanted to coz i'm this poor asian girl with nowhere to go.. :D so help me, God.
Friday, June 30, 2006
and was crying for three days after my first paper
and just couldnt function
to the point that
my sister had to come down from leicester to hold my hand
coz i thought i was gonna die
and after the exam
i just chucked all my notes
into a box
and wanted to dump it
over the waterloo bridge
into the thames
coz looking at them
was too upsetting
WELL GOD IS SO AWESOME AS ALWAYS COS I GOT A DISTINCTION FOR THAT HORRIBLE PAPER AND ANOTHER FOR THIS OTHER NOT AS HORRIBLE BUT KINDA TRAUMATIZING AS WELL ANTHROPOLOGY PAPER!!!
i couldnt believe it when i saw the marks. i had to ask my tutor if those were really my marks and if indeed she hadn't confused them. wow. god is so awesome. this is a miracle.. wow.
Thursday, June 22, 2006
Wednesday, June 21, 2006
I got the job!!
ok ok so it's a subwarden position at an lse hall of residence.. no investment banking for me, but at least this will help offset living expenses for phd next year and save me the trouble of looking for a place to stay and paying for rent.
Thursday, June 15, 2006
i've been thinking, that sometimes i seem to be searching for that something to kickstart my "real life", but the truth is, the stuff that make life worth living is usually right in front of me and within my grasp.. not some mad impossibility.. but so "normal" that i often bypass it in search of the spectacular, quite ignorant that the spectacular is to be found, first and foremost, in the ordinary.. "grace is but glory begun, glory is but grace perfected." (random quote i picked up from the west wing.)
still, there is much magic yet to be found and experienced. lift up your eyes!! coz the best is yet to come, as always. :)
Tuesday, June 13, 2006
this book is just rockin.
my exams are over
now all that's left is the dissertation.
i didn't get this receptionist job that i really wanted
which is okay
i'm making plans
to go holidaying
at someplace exotic
ps: HURRY UP ENGLAND!!! :D
Friday, June 09, 2006
Monday, June 05, 2006
i saw them while i was heading to sainsbury's along kingsway. i followed them across the road and ran ahead to take their picture. they were tottering along at 0.01mph, too busy focusing on the road and holding each other to notice me. i wonder what's their story..
but it's past midnight!! a walk? waterloo bridge? tower bridge?:P i love the river too much..
i'm moving out of this place come the 30th. kinda sad coz i like it so much and my room's so cozy with lotsa fun memories and 'tis prime location.. hopefully news of summer job will come tomorrow so i can look for a place accordingly. if tak dapat kerje, i'm thinking of going home mid-summer.. :)
church was pretty cool today.. had groovy speaker aussie dude from sydney who spoke about faith and believing for miracles and how miracles happen when you AND god get together and he kinda makes it happen but ya gotta ask and believe and have faith. and i was just thinking about how simple it is, really, and how i can be so idiotic sometimes worrying about things i cannot change and not letting go of the past and not trusting coz perhaps i think that by me thinking and obssessing about it and obssessing could change the situation. but the rreality is that of courrse i can't change nuthin and god sez don't worry be happy and so i will do just that. hehhehh..
can't wait for exams to be over. just eight more days and counting.. then i'll be free free free as free as a birdy to go touring round london, start my new exercise regime *ehhem*, go walking everywhere, get involved in church, go sit in parks and write and read and do all sorts of fun things with summer. nowdays dawn kicks in around 4 and twilight at 9. everything looks so bright and sunny and pretty during the day. the sky is blue the sun is out it is not cold anymore and i'm superly happy except that i can't go outdoors but gotta sit indoors and admire the sky from my limited-view window coz i hafta study about industrialization strategies, the history of capitalism and albert hirschmann.. among others. i'm coming to the realization that an inherent problem here is that i don't buy it enough. as in, i read it, i understand where the writers are coming from, and i go like, yea whatever.. yet another earth-shaking theory about building states, institutions and reducing global poverty and i hope it helps the world, i really do. perhaps i'm not interested enough in global development issues.. yet on the other hand, i think i am.. otherwise i wouldn't be here. i just don't trust what i'm learning... We sometimes more than anything appear to be doing post-mortems on what did not work (based on past experiments on living communities) and studying new grand theories that appeared after tweaking the last failed grand theory. and the cases that did work, ie south korea, taiwan et al, came about not coz of foreign intervention but mostly coz they had leaders who were committed to nation building, dedicated, worked their butts off, and had more than a bit of common sense not to be dependent on the West nor buy into their prescriptions. So, so much for the white man's burden and so much for ivy-league trained neo-liberal economists with their economic models and prescriptions..
but what do i know? i'm just a girl from some kampung who thinks the best meal in the world is nasi kandar wrapped in plastic and newspaper from a kedai tepi longkang called Shariff's.
so give me 8 more days and all that will be a distant memory.. i think i will live.
but what do i really buy?
Friday, June 02, 2006
2. don't study the night before the exam.
3. watch a movie the night before the exam.
4. get enough sleep - 10 hours is quite ideal
5. bring food and water into the exam hall
6. bring watch.
7. don't panic
8. eat well.
9. go shopping.
no biggie. just an exam. ok. breathe. enough. i wanna gohommmeeee WAIILLLLLLLLLLLLLLL
no actually, i just finished another exam and i wanna watch da vinci code. :D
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
Friday, May 26, 2006
it's over and fifty years from now i won't even remember it coz heck, it's just an exam.. :D i think it's mostly my pride that's at stake and that's why i was upset. coz it's like i kinda know all this stuff and yet i can't seem to write them down coherently when the pressure's on and i start thinking that the exam is NOT AN ACCURATE APPRAISAL OF MY ABILITIES COZ I THINK I'M SMARTER THAN I APPEAR TO BE... or so i thought. But now i'm back to.. aish.. it's just ya know.. lots of facts and theories which people argue about all the time and change their minds about all the time as well.. so, no biggie. what do i know? and what do i care as well? i know nothing, except that god loves me, the best is yet to come, my future is in the best of hands, and i should start studying for the next paper.. :D
philippians 4:4-7 rejoice in the lord always. again i will say, rejoice! let your gentleness be known to all men. the Lord is at hand. be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds though Christ Jesus.
i need.. a miracle.
Thursday, May 25, 2006
sigh. oh well. :P
moving right along.
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
rasa sayang hey
rasa sayang sayang hey
hey lihat nona jauh
rasa sayang sayang hey
Buah cempedak di luar pagar
Ambil galah tolong jolokkan
Saya budak baru belajar
Kalau salah tolong tunjukkan
Pisang emas dibawa belayar
Masak sebiji di atas peti
Hutang emas boleh dibayar
Hutang budi dibawa mati
Pulau pandan jauh ke tengah
Gunung DAik bercabang tiga
Hancur badan dikandung tanah
Budi yang baik dikenang juga
Kalau ada sumur di ladang
Boleh saya menumpang mandi
Kalau ada umur yang panjang
Boleh kita berjumpa lagi
Saturday, May 13, 2006
i think it's getting to me. everything. i'm trying not to let it get to me. didn't do anything today at all. woke up late. kavita, d and i went for a walk to picadilly circus. had ben and jerry's, saw some police breaking up a street footie game, met mitra at trocadero, shopped for sweatshirts, finally decided to watch confetti, came back via shaftsbury avenue, got hussled by some black men... and now i'm here.. thinking.. that i need to get over it.
isn't lola so pretty?
Wednesday, May 10, 2006
this is what happens when a finnish-canadian decides to celebrate his birthday. he drags his friends to an ice bar where the sun never shines and the temperature is at a steady minus five celsius.
it was an experience, even if there were no icicles or northern lights. the bartender was swedish and the drinks were decent.
went into waterstones today and was tempted to take up its "3 for 2" offer. books that i was so very much tempted to buy:
1. Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman! - Richard P. Feynman, Ralph Leighton (ok i'm so glad i din't buy this one coz it's £0.99 second hand on amazon.co.uk, compared to 9.99 waterstones)
2. Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed - Jared Diamond
3. A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian - Marina Lewycka (but i wouldn't have bought this anyway coz kavita has it and i can just borrow from her)
4. and another book about how science work by this dude who has a science show on british telly. forgot both title and author. sigh. it seemed really interesting.. :D
currently reading (apart from the stuff that's on the reading lists for exams..)
1. Cosmopolitanism - Kwame Anthony Appiah (ok i got past the first chapter and i like how after you reach a certain milestone in your career you don't have to write with references anymore. just declare anything like it's the whole truth and nothing but the truth..)
2. Reflections of exile - Edward Said (ahh..he's too cool and this book is a collection of essays which makes it easier to read coz it requires short term concentration. i like. which is why I also like short stories.. coz you don't have to cheat by reading the back first.. which is what i usually do in long books.. i seldom read fiction nowdays. the only fiction i have in my room right now is p.g.woodhouse and roald dahl.. oh, and madeleine l'engle. all kids books. :D)
books bought but notchet read coz no time
1. preemption - alan dershowtiz
2. the poisonwood bible - barbara kingsolver
3. identity and violence: the illusion of destiny - amartya sen (kavita's reading this and she's making a summary for me. lol)
4. the wretched of the earth - franz fanon. actually bought this a long time ago but still couldn't quite get into it.
5. orientalism - edward said
6. intertwined lives: margeret mead and ruth benedict - lois banner
i think i'm gonna stay in london for summer. the libraries and bookshops here are way too cool. whoa imagine: a good book, sunshine, bottle of wine, food, park, grass, blanket, shades.. bliss.
Tuesday, May 09, 2006
i did not go to see my tutor. kinda chickened out in the end coz i had so many things to ask him but nothing really to say and i wanted to read more before i made a complete fool of myself by astounding him with my knowledge (or lack of it). but now remains that nagging thought ya know.. what if i had gone? maybe he'd have told me words of wisdom from heaven that will propel me instantaneously to firstclass-nerdom. arghhh... also he looks like colin firth and i don't know what to say to such hunkyness. it's like, wow check out those sideburns and high forehead and ok focus focus on what he's saying and stop staring at his broad comfortable-looking chest, g. :D lol. (it's more vivid in my imagination than it is in reality, truly:D)
up next week: goodbye french, hello tutor.
a few nights ago i dreamt someone said the perfect sentence. i recalled making numerous mental notes in my half-awake state to remember it verbatim, but now i can't even remember what it's about. but oh, the feeling of making the perfect sentence!! that i still remember.. :)
i'm beginning to view "progress" as a journeying process that do not involve the conscious act of learning alone, but the subconscious internalization and embodiment of modes of behavior and patterns of thought processes from an atmosphere alive and vibrant with new ideas and opposing paradigms... and despite my initial stuttering and half-baked attempts to express my underdeveloped thoughts, i find myself now, further down the road, at a point where the stuttering is less pronounced and what seemed like an impossible goal at the beginning now becomes clearer and within reach: the ability to construct and succesfully defend an argument in a more sophisticated manner. lol. :D
apparently that's what it all boils down to. it ain't matter what other people think is right. you just gotta figure out whatcha think works for you and why you thinkit and defend your ground till the end. steadfast, unwavering, immovable... in the face of 10001 other voices. apparently, quality is secondary, it's who says it and how loud and strong he or she says it that matter more. i think that's all bullshit of course but perhaps that's why god's so easy to miss.. coz daily reminders of god can be so subtle: a loving gesture, an unexpected kind word, unexplainable joy..
so at times, it is amidst the cacophony of voices all screaming for my attention that i strain to hear but sometimes miss, the gentle steady whisper(er)... where is my god? Ahh....
"His sheep follow him because they know his voice." John 10:4
Monday, May 08, 2006
so at 3:45pm on a cloudy sunday afternoon, eli, valeria and i decided to go for an elephant hunt in london. apparently a big mechanical wooden elephant was roundabout town as part of a drama troupe from france. so imagine, the three of us, hurriedly walking along greet queen street in the direction of picadilly circus, having a conversation that went something like this:
g: so, what's this again?
e: the elephant. it's at picadilly circus. i went there earlier and they said it's gonna start walking at 3:30.
v: and this is a wooden mechanical elephant, yea..?
e: yeah, i saw a huge bowl of water at one of the streets. i think the elephant's gonna drink from it.
v: come on.. why would an elephant drink water from a bowl? it's a wooden elephant.
e: i dunno.. but that's what i saw.
g: so, the elephant's gonna drink the water huh. what's it gonna do with the water?
e: i dunno.. but that's what i saw...
so yeah, the elephant was HUGE.... REALLY HUGE.. as tall as a two storey building. it pulled a stage which carried a live band that included a bagpipe dude playing funky music. it was "driven" by eight people, each controlling the different appendages of the elephant: forelegs, back legs, trunk, head.. And on top of the elephant was a mongolian looking person decked in some kind of maharajah outfit looking exoticly fierce and ringleader-ish. and yes, the elephant did indeed drink from the huge bowls of water that eli saw, and it was spraying water onto the crowd with its trunk, although i couldn't quite figure out where the elephant kept the water.. huge bladder must be.
so fun. i love london.
Sunday, May 07, 2006
I won't find what I am looking for
If I only "see" by keeping score
'Cos I know now you are so much more than arithmetic
'Cos if I add, if I subtract
If I give it all, try to take some back
I've forgotten the freedom that comes from the fact
That you are the sum
So you are the one
- brooke fraser, "arithmetic"
Saturday, May 06, 2006
had two study sessions in two days and am so grateful for grace and strength to study and nail these exams. my first paper is in 20 days.. am now focusing on the later papers (cos they're more difficult) but next week will devote energies towards an404. feeling incredibly nerdy but also enjoying every bit of it. cos i'm returning to my old notes and old readings and they suddenly made more sense than they ever did before.. phew..
meanwhile, been checking out jth on the net and listening to him on itunes. *wink to gail*. hehehe.. and having loads of silly dreams.. :D *giggle* but as always, the best is yet to come.
ok im so grateful to be alive and well. the past few weeks have been just amazing. the weather's been great and things somehow just fall into place, even if at some point they did seem a little sucky. the best thing is that i now do not need a coat outdoors. groovy. just groovy.
Tuesday, May 02, 2006
eternity in your hand
you spoke the earth into motion
my soul now to stand
you stood before my failure
carried the cross for my shame
my sin weighed upon your shoulders
my soul now to stand
so what could i say?
and what could i do?
but offer this heart o god
completely to you
so i walk upon salvation
your spirit alive in me
this life to declare your promise
my soul now to stand
so what could i say?
and what could i do?
but offer this heart o god
completely to you
so i'll stand
with arms high and heart abandoned
of the one who gave it all
so i'll stand
my soul lord to you surrendered
all i am is yours
- joel houston "the stand"
Monday, May 01, 2006
i'm so glad you're so alive and happening and working in the hearts and lives of me and the people around me.
Just continue to work that wonder and magic ok. i totally trust in you.. cos "marvellous are Your works, I know that full well."
in other words: God, YOU DA BOMB!
Thursday, April 27, 2006
a: at the beginning of a relationship, the guy is more insecure than the girl, hence he'll do anything for the girl lah...but once he thinks he's gotten her, then he'll start feeling more secure, then he'll stop showering her with affection, then the girl's turn to start feeling insecure pulak...
i think i'll go get me a dog. :)
Wednesday, April 26, 2006
Tuesday, April 25, 2006
i guess this is where i start working even though i'm hardly inspired by keynesian economics and growth theories.
i think inside, i'm indian. but if i'm indian then i'd like economics. i don't hate it, i just find it incredibly boring and tiresome. :)
my tutor's so cute though. :D with sideburns wan. HAHAHAa.
feel like skipping french. it starts in 5 minutes. maybe i'lll just go late or something. argh.
ok ok. relax relax. maybe i shud go sleep.
it's the second day of summer term. handed in first assessed essay yesterday. kinda nuts about my dissertation, still having trouble pinning down the research question. and then there's the exam prep.. which isn't so difficult i guess but i do wanna do well.. :) ahhh for wisdom!
god's been so good, as always. :D
sister is in amsterdam right now probably eating some magic mushroom cookies. but she'll be back later. woohooo. we walked from drury lane to tower bridge along the river thames and back some time last week. took us two hours, from 12:15 - 2am.. some 8km altogether. and i know the names of all the bridges from waterloo to tower: waterloo, blackfriars, millenium, southwark, cannon street railway bridge, london bridge, tower bridge. :D i dont even know why im writing this here.
anyways, am feeling so blessed beyond belief.. good friends, good food, magical moments (even if oswald chambers said in his reading today that we gotta work anyway even if we're not inspired... :D) and just enough money in the bank to keep me going. :)
oh, a song that was oh so inspiring which i heard in church and been replaying on my ipod ever since:
You placed the stars in the sky
and You know them by name
You are amazing God
All powerful, untamable,
Awestruck we fall to our knees
as we humbly proclaim,
you are amazing God
You see the depths of my heart
and You love me the same
You are amazing God
You are amazing God.."
"Indescribable", by Chris Tomlin
super duper love. :D
Friday, April 14, 2006
I meant to write you earlier but keep forgetting!! I am well. Preparing for exams in a month's time while finishing up term essays and dissertation proposals due in 10 days. I'm in the midst of a 3,000 word essay. I've written 1,000 words so far. :) Gail was here a few days ago but she's now in Portugal visiting a friend (female:) whom she met while on camp in America last summer. Since portugal is a catholic country, good friday and easter are celebrated with much fanfare and so she left with plans of going up this mountain with her friends before dawn on Easter sunday for a sunrise service. hehee.. Me, on the other hand, will be stuck here in good old London, which isn't too bad a proposition i guess. Will be going to church at westminster chapel and then having an easter meal with some friends. Was so tempted to jump with her on the plane to portugal, if only the balance in my bank account was more agreeable. :)
oh i got accepted into the phd program in anthropology here starting this september. However, i'm still rather undecided about it and am keeping my options open for other schools. Although lse is pretty intellectually stimulating, yet the english system basically leaves you to your own devices most of the time and i think i prefer some sort of close mentoring, especially when it comes to undertaking such a long term project. So i'm setting my sights on Australia and the States as well..:D There's also the question of funding. i did apply for the usm fellowship program, but i have mixed feelings about the idea of being bonded for seven years teaching in usm. While it would be good to settle down and be near the old folks, i still haven't quite achieved my quest for world domination. heheh. no i'm kidding. i could live in penang and i would be quite happy at home.. but it all seems too clear cut and somehow i can't shrug off the feeling that there could be more out there. so we'll see.. :)
The days are longer with summer coming up and it isn't so cold now. It has been a rather long winter apparently. i can't wait for the time when i can walk out of the building in flip flops and shorts. London is so pretty and colourful in the spring sunlight.. i enjoy walking in the parks especially on the way to church.. ducks, daffodils and cherry blossoms erasing the dreariness of winter. :D so lovely.
As of now, I'm planning to go home in mid-July for summer.. i miss Asia. England and europe is too sterile for me, despite all its comforts and conveniences. i think i've had enough of post-enlightenment culture. My manglish, malay and tagalog are getting rusty.
But, as you are probably aware, everything is quite subject to change when it comes to me. To be honest, i'm not too bothered.. am trusting God to open up opportunities for where he wants me to be. Perhaps i should be more concerned, but i'm not. hehhh. At any rate, don't worry and I'll keep you guys informed!
Love to all,
1. celebrated my first sader (Jewish passover) organized by my neighbour, E, downstairs in the common room. Around 30 of us - different nationalities, religions and ethnicity - reclined on our cushioned sofas while reciting and reminiscing the psalms, songs and stories of how the Eternal One delivered the people of Israel out of Egypt. It was quite the experience.. especially the part where we poured a cup of wine for Elijah and stood up to welcome him in. :) Oh, one more thing.. great food. :) nothing much can beat chocoloate coated macaroons and braised beef.. eaten separately of course. :D
2. wrote the introduction to my 3000-word assessed essay on poverty and it is lookin good. :D I'm starting with shakespeare and ending with harun al-rashid, with a bit of einstein in the middle. God, help me, help me.
3. got engrossed in edward said's book "reflections of exile" today at the library. Good stuff i ordered myself a copy from amazon.co.uk. A quote that he quoted:
"The man who finds his homeland sweet is still a tender beginner; he to whom every soil is as his native one is already strong; but he is perfect to whom the entire world is as a foreign land. The tender soul has fixed his love on one spot in the world; the strong man has extended his love to all places; the perfect man has extinguished his."
Hugo of St. Victory, a twelfth-century monk from Saxony.
What he meant by the perfect man estinguishing his love, was that he now looks at every new place in a fresh way full of possibilities, without carrying with him the baggage of some nostalgic dream of "home" to compare and contrast his new land with. :) cool eh.
said is da bomb. and he writes so clearly as well! just too bad he's dead.
Sunday, April 09, 2006
Monday, April 03, 2006
me and d, with henna on my hair and dripping... :D
joel lying on grass and sighing
found the end of the rainbow while cycling with ayu and joel at cam. :) the pot of gold was the moment itself :)
tea and scones
me so fat! :) diet starts tomorrow!!
joel, giving music to ayu's love song
sculpture of jesus, at salisbury cathedral
i love my london buses
So these are what humbugs look like. finally, after reading about them in enid blyton and biggles storybooks, i have a substantial image to take over where imagination previously ruled
welcome to scotland :)
cakes at borough market.. thoroughly fattening.
me, before the haircut
ayu, writing a malay love song :D (It's true!!!)
me and lee, the night i made him a farewell turkey sandwich after he woke me up to say goodbye before flying off to the states for good
me at stonehenge. wonder what the fuss is all about. just a bunch of stones. :D
Sunday, April 02, 2006
1. I'm now on easter vacation. Five weeks of bliss and it's entering week three and I still haven't revised for my exams but here the holiday ends. Two weeks of gallivanting is more than enough I assure you. On Tuesday after Ayu leaves, I will hit the books. :D
2. I got accepted into the lse phd program. woohooo.. but no funding just yet so those of you who'd like to invest in my education, drop me an email. I'm still looking for money though and am quite sure that it'll turn up. And if it doesn't, i'll still believe the best is yet to come.
3. My exams are in May and June. I'm thinking of going home for summer for a bit, especially if I'll return here in september for next term. Don't know yet. So many plans, don't know how.
4. I am settled at a church, finally. It's called westminster chapel and it's near westminster abbey, parliment cathedral and the westminster methodist center. lol. And st. james park. Groovy music, lepak people, power message and intimate gatherings.. what more could i ask for? and, a good friend who lives in my building goes there too. AND, it's within walking distance through one of the prettiest parks in London. :)
5. Two friends and I drove from lancaster to scotland through the highlands and along the coast. it's b-e-a-u-tiful. I think i now understand a little more why Braveheart and Rob Roy would fight and die for their country.
6. I saw Phantom of the Opera the musical with J. totally groovy.
7. My sister's coming to visit next week. *groan* hehehhe.. :D
8. My dissertation topic got approved and I met with a member of the faculty who gave me great advice for a topic not written about much. hallelujahhhh!!! haha.
9. I have three essays to write. I just wrote one. I now have two more. It's some volunteer work which can be so uninspiring sometimes. But sometimes just gotta plod on no? :P
10. Oh and I have one graded term paper to write. I think I'll work on that Tuesday. Time flies. Unbelievable. sigh.
Blue Like Jazz, donald miller
It is very pretty here. Went punting on the river with J, Ayu and D. Man that was tiring and scary, especially when D almost fell into the river. The funniest part was when this other boat hit our boat, and its punter fell backwards, not into the river, but into another boat that came up behind them. Hilarious. At least he didn't fall into the water.. that would have been quite something, as it's still a little chilly outside. :)
J is as lawak as ever. Seeing him in default surroundings sure revealed stuff about him that we somehow suspected but never did quite confirm, till now. "I see your true colours.. shining through".. and that's why i love you. la lalala... hahah.
but when all's said and done, i still think lse is da bomb in terms of facilities (fantastic), frills (minimal but enough to create some form of "tradition" with which comes along again, some form of school spirit), convenience (it takes 5 minutes to get from one end of the "campus" to the other), location (london at my fingertips), quality (well..it isn't too bad, really) and people (the whole world is at lse). I couldn't think of any other place where I would be happier in England than in good old London. :)
ok so enough raving and that's about as school-spirty as I'll ever get.
Here's something I read from J's book called "Blue Like Jazz", wherein the author donald miller akins following Jesus to jazz. His preface reads: "I never liked jazz music before because jazz music doesn't resolve. But I was outside the BAgdad Theater in Portland one night when I saw a man playing the saxophone. I stood there for fifteen minutes, and he never opened his eyes. After that I liked jazz music. Sometimes you have to watch somebody love something before you can love it yourself. It is as if they are showing you the way. I used to not like God because God didn't resolve. but that was before any of this happened."
That being enough to grab my attention, I just had to leaf through the book. Now this guy, he writes with magic. :)
On Worship - The Mysitcal Wonder
I read a book a long time ago about Mother Teresa. Somebody in the book asked her how she summoned the strength to love so many people. She said she loved people becasue they are Jesus, each one of them is Jesus, and this is true because it says so in the Bible. And it is also true that this idea contradicts the facts of reality: Everybody can't be Jesus. There are many ideas within Christian spirituality that contradict the facts of reality as I understand them. A statement like this offends some Christians because they believe if aspects of their faith do not obey the facts of reality, they are not true. But I think there are all sorts of things our hearts believe that don't make sense to our heads. Love, for instance; we believe in love. Beauty. Jesus as God.
It comforts me to think that if we are created beings, the thing that created us would have to be greater than us, so much greater, in fact, that we would not be able to understand it. It would have to be greater than the facts of our reality, and so it would seem to us, looking out from within our reality, that it would contradict reason. But reason itself would suggest it would have to be greater than reality, or it would not be reasonable.
When we worship God we worship a Being our life experience does not give us the tools with which to understand. If we could, God would not inspire awe. Eternity, for example, is not something the human mind can understand. We may be able to wrap our heads around living forever (and we can do this only because none of us has experienced death), but can we understand what it means to have never been born? I only say this to illustrate that we, as Christians, believe things we cannot explain. And so does everybody else.
I have a friend who is a seminary student who criticizes certain Christian writers for embracing what he calls "mysticism". I asked him if his statement meant that he was not a mystic. Of course not, he told me. I asked him if he believed in the Trinity. He said he did. I asked him if he belived that the Trinity represented three separate persons who are also one. He said he did. I asked him if that would be considered a mystical idea. He just stood there thinking.
You cannot be a Christian without being a mystic.
I was talking to a homeless man at a laundry mat recently, and he said that when we reduce Christian spirituality to math we defile the Holy. I thoguht that was very beautiful and comforting because I have never been good at math. Many of our attempts to understand Christian faith have only cheapened it. I can no more understand the totality of God than the pancake I made for breakfast understands the complexity of me. The little we do understand, that grain of sand our minds are capable of grasping, those ideas such as God is good, God feels, God loves, God knows all, are enough to keep our hearts dwelling on His majesty and otherness forever.
Thursday, March 16, 2006
Tuesday, March 14, 2006
nothing much can beat shariff's though. simple inexpensive pleasures. :D
it's the first day of the last week of school today. had the last dv400 lecture. i guess this is where the real work starts, synthesizing all my knowledge and fitting the details into the bigger picture in prep for the exams. *gulp*
i miss warm weather and my head feels woolly.. :( boohoo..
Monday, March 06, 2006
Friday, March 03, 2006
I'm so tired. long long week spent writing.. a lot. of nonsense. :)
hopefully it'll be worth it.
Meanwhile, tomorrow i'll be visiting stonehenge. *wink
I have a new neighbour two doors away on the right, across the hallway. chick from singapore, 3rd year undergrad. We're gonna integrate her into the G-floor gang. Muahaha... will be fun.
oh i went for hillsong connect group for the first time last weds. friend had to convince me to go, cos i was so shy and afraid that they'd eat me up. turned out to be great cos everybody was kinda new, the boys cooked.. we had about 10 of us from different countries.. and there were no "cliques" in the group.. so people were kinda mingling. awesome.
can't wait for more. *grin
Thursday, March 02, 2006
I put on my bright coloured clothes (in anticipation of spring), ditch the heavy sweaters and scarf, and step outside to soak in the mild weather as seen through my window, only to be slapped back to the reality that:
1. winter is SO not over (max 4C, min -2)
2. looks are so deceiving
3. england is a country full of weather surprises.
It snowed on Monday, yesterday and today. 10-15 minute sessions of falling white. Earlier, in yet another lecture on poverty, my mind absently tuning in to labor-wages-employment-welfare arguments while making its voyages around the world, it started snowing (again) outside. It didn't really register at first, until people in class started nudging each other, whispering "it's snowing!" and gesturing outside at the gentle dropping flakes. ahhhh.. so pretttyy....
and then five minutes later, it stopped.
I'm still waiting for the much-fabled London covered in absolute white to materialise. Blizzard Geezard.
Monday, February 27, 2006
ok ok. feel convicted on all counts. guilty as charged. i'm a meanie.
but i tried my best, considering the circumstances. and god, next time, i'll do better.. really.. :D
Sunday, February 26, 2006
Dinner was pretty jolly. We had sushi for the first time, thanks to the tireless effort of my guest. It's no easy task to boil the rice to a just right consistency, cut the vegetables into long thin strips, make sure the amount of vinegar is again, just right, and finally, roll the sushi in fragile seaweed and cut it with my not-so-sharp collection of knives. Incredible.
S came (with a new haircut), k made pasta, d made some rice and yoghurt thingy, i fried vegetable spring rolls (that had been in the freezer since chinese new year), v brought a choc cake, r dropped by, S2 brought some cheap champange, and we also opened a bottle of white wine which some person donated a few dinners back that actually tasted like proper wine. :) i think the trick is to buy wine which cost more than 8 pounds. but of course, with student allowances and our "cheaper the better" orientation, all we've had were lousy wine at previous dinner parties:P :)
I suspect that we might be getting too familiar with each other though, as most of the conversation/interaction nowdays has achieved the level of sibling-like bickering, although i'm not complaining. There's something strangely comforting about being able to knowningly, confidently and rudely tell someone to shut up, without causing any offense..
So i think at the core of it, i feel slightly uncomfortable with the presence of my uncle's friend, whom i shall now call M, because the emotions and thoughts that her presence evoke in me is too close for comfort ya know? Perhaps she gives me an idea of how i could have turned out, should i not have this life I'm living now. I could have easily been in her shoes.. fed-up with home, desperate for a better life, lonely, having all these aspirations of starting anew here and now having these dreams slightly taken a beating. The cold reality is that the real world is brutal and nobody really cares. And without the knowledge of God, it's a potential exercise in futility. Tough.
and maybe her presence (or intrusion.. depending on how you look at it) is a gentle jolt from the Father for some cross-examination of g-self which has resulted with the reminder of how incredibly blessed i am. Everything in my life is such a gift for undeserving me... which is why i feel compelled to just be there for her. even if i really don't feel like it.
so, since my life is really not mine in the first place, what's my problem right? :)
it's like dad would say, christians have no "right" to anything because our lives are not our own. The way of the Jesus-people calls for abandonment to everything that seeks to distract us from the one thing that is our consciousness: the unconditional and desperate love of the Father manifested in the death of Jesus on the cross, and what that love compels us to do.
so, no problem at all but sorry god, i still have my moments. it's tough ya know, but you did it so i guess it can be done. :P
in some manner it reminds me of manila and what S and i used to hypothesize about. You get all these people pulling on you for everything, and much is required of your time, your energy, resources, etc.. When do you put your foot down and say no? Well, the conclusion (so far, after much thought and argument), has been: yes, love compels, but don't be stupid. :P
and here, a familiar well-worn passage that dad made us read every morning before we head off to school..
Love, from 1 Corinthians 13: 1-13
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
No more childish ways. Time to grow up.
Saturday, February 25, 2006
my uncle's friend has eaten two cans of my heinz soup, appear to be overly friendly to my floormate, k (till he almost thinks she's hitting on him), invited herself to our stonehenge trip next weekend (although we had to say no go cos it's organized by the hall with limited spaces) and .. and.. and she's cooking dinner tonight. woohoooo..
well now i have good excuse to buy more soup (sainsbury's offer: 3 cans for £1), we have more excuses to heap teasing and snide remarks on k (he'll never hear the end of this), and sushi for dinner is always a good idea.
ok ok honestly, it ain't so bad. but but but.. but what if she decides to come every week? *gulp* oh my, next week is her birthday. woooohooooooooooowlllllll...
wahhhhh... hahahahahaa... ahhha.. ha.aha..ha.ha..
Friday, February 24, 2006
Turns out, it was this lady who is a friend of a particular uncle of mine whom i've met only once, four years ago. (The lady, not the uncle. The uncle i meet about once a year). She wanted to come stay over at my place, because she seemed to remember that I was nice and jolly and friendly to her that one time I met her. And, she claims to be friends even though i can't even remember what she looked like and had to ask her for her name, twice.
You know how it is when people put you in such a position that it would be outright rude to say NO I'M SORRY I DON'T THINK I KNOW YOU AND YOU CAN'T SIMPLY CLAIM FRIENDSHIP AND BARGE INTO MY LIFE AND EXPECT ME TO DROP EVERYTHING TO ACCOMODATE YOU? Yeah well, at that stage, I had no choice, short of being obnoxious and risk ruining the family name. (like i really care about that in the first place)
So we agreed to meet for lunch and so that Saturday I set out to chinatown to have dimsum with her and her friend. Her friend was funny, interesting and paid for the dimsum. :) She.. she was.. "ernest", well-meaning and totally naive. Highly ambitious, she came over on a two-year holiday visa with the intention of finding a permanent job here eventually, having had enough of Malaysia and the "low prospects" and "dirty politics" back home. Bottom line was, she ain't going home to work. Ever. Ok, fine, whatever.
It started getting scary when we went back to my room for tea, and after about 5 minutes, she jumped onto my bed and started snuggling into the pillows. She then went into the bathroom and removed my "toilet book" from its usual space and jumped back into the bed with it. Right. Nothing I can't handle. It then got REALLY scary when she starting commenting about the books in the room and how she love books and want to be an "academician" and "oooohhhhh grace your room feels so nice.. i think i'll come over and stay with you over the weekend or whenever i'm in london."
(THIS CAN'T BE HAPPENING. THIS CAN'T BE HAPPENING..NOOOOOOOOO)
Fast forward to the present, a month later. She is, even as I'm writing this down in the basement, upstairs in my room, having taken over my bed, "littering" my room with her stuff, inserting her CDs in to my computer, monopolizing my music, and.. and.. she's staying until Sunday (and today is friday night) *Sob* and and.. i think she has plans to come back the following weekend. *gulp*
It all started when I received an email from her yesterday saying that she's exhausted and needed a place to rest and some "positive energy". (whatever that means). It wasn't a request to come over, it was more like a desperate plea to come over and i couldn't say No to that, could i? and today, i find out that she apparently emailed my uncle to ask HIM if SHE could come over and stay with ME and i was like, WHAT THE???? and i think i'm slighly pissed because first of all, i'm not even close to this uncle of mine. Second of all, my uncle sends his regards to me through her. So i don't know.. i don't know if that's normal. Third of all, i can't believe that my uncle, who never calls me, has never called me in his life, and most likely will never EVER call me, liberally dispense my number to a stranger and without informing me, expects me to take care of said stranger when she appears at my doorstep.
ok ok.. so there's the whole question of "what would jesus do?". Or even, "what would my parents do?". And I guess my parents would of course welcome strangers at their home and have been doing so for as long as i could remember. And i think although i suspect it was more of my dad then my mom, i never really understood the selflessness on their part and what big hearts they had to do it because THIS IS NOT SOMETHING ORDINARY PEOPLE DO. but of course, we are not called to be ordinary, are we?
so in spite of all the whining, i'm ok. i'm not particularly overjoyed that she's here. but i think i'll live. But there's still the question ya know? To what extent am i required to extend love? Are there limits to this sort of thing? Dare I take the words of Jesus literally all the way?
i'm torn. part of me wants to be rude. another part knows that i'll feel really bad if i'm rude. so i'm not rude. but i'm not overly friendly either. help. I'm trying not to be nasty.
Tuesday, February 21, 2006
To: ******** ****** <**********@gmail.com>
Date: Feb 21, 2006 1:23 AM
Subject: Re: ok..
it's amazing isn't it how people can get so caught up in fervour and passion and be totally blinded by ignorance. again this just sums up the reality of the world we live in doesn't it? everything is teetering in a delicate balance.. in some ways we don't know what to expect anymore. maybe we never did. forces from every direction, pulling and constraining and fighting for our affections and ultimately, our souls. sometimes i feel lost in all the ideas and opinions that i'm exposed to over here. every other person proclaiming the latest fashionable ideology in my face. i'm torn into a million pieces. my world is constantly being deconstructed and when that happens at too fast a pace i feel as though i'm hurtling through the universe at top speed, into an abyss.. unsure of what lies at the end of the fall.
(yet in the end, there are always arms of love to catch me.. and i think in the past few days i've been repeatedly reassured of that. and perhaps this knowledge is the one thing that keeps me going)
i'm pressed into a position to make up my mind. in the midst of the conflicting forces that yell for my attention, i am pressured to get off the fence. To make a stand and squeeze out: what the hell is it that i truly believe in? i think in some ways i'm experimenting with a whole lot of ideas and theories.. and now more than ever, there is much need for truth.. to serve as a sword to piece the darkness and confusion that cloud our thinking and outlook, to navigate and fight through the bullshit and to get to the core of it all: the one thing that makes life worth living. What is the one passion that underlies our being, the essence that gives meaning to the dust that we are, that exposes superficial thoughts and actions for what they are, and that brings us closer to truth.
(Queue "x-files" theme song.. doo doo doo doo dooo dooooo)
so today we went to watch jeremy irons do a quasi-monologue in this play called "embers". it's pretty good i hope you'll get to watch it as well. in some ways it was more terrifying than a horror movie, because the themes it explored were basic and fundamental to the human heart: love, passion, betrayal, friendship, revenge, bringing the existential us to our knees. One thing he mentioned which i remembered was, this question that he put forward: if you really love someone, can you bind them to the promise of fidelity? Because the fact that they engage in infidelity means that your love was not enough to make them happy.. and so if you really love them and want them to be happy, you would not bind them to such promises. (paraphrase mine)
i think i'm finding it more and more necessary to love. K, (one of my floormates) tells me that i'm too sincere and trusting for my own good. Apparently i can't live in the real world full of dogs and rats. I should find some place idealistic and fine and dandies to live and "do my own thing" there.. Like mars, i suggested. And he said, yea.. like mars. Mars would be a good idea, he thinks.
we were kinda dissecting the play and he was saying how it's a really sad play but it's stuff which he already knows about.. that life is empty and we are all animals and all we live for is to survive. And me, of course, trying to convince him otherwise, that we are more than animals.. that we have to live inspired.. and that we are not here to merely survive.. but there is something great worth living for.
and after a while he just said (we were on msn chat. he was upstairs and i was downstairs in the basement), "i'm coming down. i can't type anymore" and he came down and i think he wanted to talk further but there were people in the room and we couldn't..
but i'm more and more convinced that there is really no other way to live and to counter the evil in this world. I'm committed to a life of non-violence. i'm a christian pacifist. i condemn the war in iraq and the (real or imagined) war in malaysia. i do not support the rights of particular indigenous peoples.. i support freedom in the widest possible sense of the word for ALL. I hate ethnic divisions. I particularly dislike putting people in a box attached with labels. I still want to believe the best in people.
I think I'm at that stage when i'm really really sorting out for myself what i truly believe in after all the constant construction, deconstruction and restructuring of my cosmology. I've got miles to go. lol.
But.. i gotta start somewhere.
Waking up is the word. Hibernation's over.