Thursday, June 8

the power of words

Language, according to the Ethnologue catalogue of world languages, there are currently 6909 living languages and about 6% of them have more than a million speakers each, and collectively account for 94% of the world population. But, what exactly is a language?

Language is defined as the method of human communication, either spoken or written, consisting of the use of words in a structured and conventional way. It is also the system of communication used by a particular community or country.

To me, language is more than just a mean of communication. Language is a tool which is able to touch hearts of people, to change the way people perceive things, and not forgetting to keep people going, staying on their course and achieving their goals in the end. Words, on the other hand, are letters which combines together and make language possible to become a mean of communication.

Many people underestimate the power of language, the power of words. One wrong word or sentence said, may cost you a lifelong friendship, may be the cause of your failed marriage, the reason why you never get along with your family members or friends...... We often speak without processing or think thoroughly and blurt out whatever we would like to express in a split second, especially when we are in a foul mood. Then, we feel bad for what we have said and apologise over and over again, or get depressed over something which cannot be done anymore, crying over spilt milk.

On special occasions or celebrations for example, we always have that mindset that we have to buy a gift for someone, but if we are unsure of what to get for someone, little did we know, at least for me,  there's actually no need to spend so much money on something which the person may or may not like. Instead, putting in effort to make a card filled with your most sincere thoughts of that person, or even sending them a heartfelt message about how you feel about that person, giving them blessings and good wishes may be the best gift which they can hold on to it forever, in their heart :-)

I just finished my AS A-Levels Examinations and finally had the time to tidy up my room. While tidying, I found my box of gifts and decided to reread the letters which I have received throughout my years in high school on special occasions like farewells, retirement from being a prefect, and graduation, as well as some letters which I have gotten for my birthday. I am really blessed for every single letter given by each and everyone of my friend. They are what kept me going up till today and they are part of who I am today. Be it nice words or harsh but true words, I appreciate them all as, without them, I may not have became the person I am today.

Well, of course I am not perfect, and I have been a victim or the person who have once hurt people when I was not thinking rationally. But, once you are aware of this problem which you have,  say you tend to hurt people when you're in a foul mood when you don't intend to do so, then try to change for the better.

According to the Master Cheng Yen Jingsi Aphorisms, 'If one has a bad temper and foul mouth, then no matter how good one's heart is, one is still not considered a good person'

Have a nice day ahead!

Monday, January 30

more about me!

Hi readers! Recently I read a novel about a girl who spent her entire summer holiday in Tinos, Greece and had abruptly started up a blog as she had nothing better to do and despised everything around her in the beginning. This made me come up with a new idea on blogging about my everyday life. I have been contemplating about this for a few days now and would really appreciate if you guys can let me know if you would like me to do it or not :)

Anyways, as the post suggests, MORE about me! Here goes 19 facts about me that you may or may not know about. If you're wondering why 19, that's because I just turned 19! Well, hope you find it interesting heh

#1 The youngest child in a family of 4, I have an older brother whom I cannot live without!
#2 My love for bananas makes me wonder at times if part of me still have yet evolved from a monkey.
#3 Coffee is life but I recently encountered some 'panic attack' issues from caffeine so yeah, there goes my favourite drink, sigh.
#4 Not your typical type of girl, but the outdoor and adventurous one. Love extreme sports and hoping to experience more of it in the future!
#5 You can call me a nerd or geek, but I love reading.
#6 Highly empathetic and emotional, I can't control my tears most of the time.
#7 Health geek who doesn't take fried food or fast food......yes, please don't judge me. Minimum intake daily: 2 Apples, 2 Oranges, not forgetting my 4 litres of water......
#8 Crazy over anything cute, and have been wanting to own a tiny hedgehog since the visit to my friend's!!!
#9 Only consumes dark chocolate over 70%.
#10 Travelling is my source of happiness, love exploring and taking interesting pictures of every corner of the world!
#11 Love for fruits never ends, especially mango, grapes, raspberries......and ACAI ICE CREAM BOWLS!
#12 May look sociable to you, but totally a socially awkward person. I just TRY my best not to look as awkward tsk tsk.
#13 Currently doing A-Levels, pure humanities subjects.
#14 Worked as a barista at Starbucks Coffeeshop, man, you have no idea, it is definitely tougher than you think......
#15 Amazed by philosophies and constantly wondering about perceptions of the world and all the things around.
#16 Have the sweetest tooth ever! Desserts are the only thing I cannot turn away from, especially Snowflake with the chewy taro balls!!!!
#17 Love animals and think that they are extremely adorable, even thought of having a pet dog, but afraid of anything that can move besides humans, that includes animals, insects and all!
#18 Started playing the piano at the age of 5/6, and used to be part of the Chinese Orchestra when I was 11, played Pipa, a type of Chinese guitar.
#19 Just turned 19 on the 6th of January! Mark that date down on your calendar, hah joking :) I feel old :(

trip to the east side of malaysia! (PART I)

The end of the year is probably the time which I most look forward to besides my birthday as my family has a tradition of going on trips. I am embarrassed to admit that I have never set foot on the East part of Malaysia throughout my 18 years living in Malaysia. Well, better late than never right?

Once we arrived at the domestic airport in Kuching, we departed to Damai Beach, which took us around an hour and a half drive. We were greeted by the strong waves, cooling sea breeze and sky which seems rather gloomy with a tint of orange hue. I was mesmerised by the beauty of nature and immediately took out my camera to capture the picture-post card perfect scenery. 

 The next day, my family and I walked to the Sarawak Cultural Village which is only a 15 minutes-walk away form our hotel. One thing to keep in mind: There are either no or very limited taxis in Sarawak, thus we travelled around mostly by walking. 

traditional Chinese temple
tools used by Chinese farmers in the agriculture field
traditional Malay house

Malays enjoy spinning tops during their past time and have a top spinning area where they conduct competitions within kampungs (=small village in Bahasa Malaysia)
this house is completely made by bamboos and woods and is built this tall to prevent wild animals from attacking in the old days

so they provided us a 'passport' kind of thing as a souvenir to collect stamps from each traditional house

We also went to watch a traditional cultural performance at noon. I really enjoyed listening to the traditional music and songs produced by their instruments made from bamboo and some other materials. Sarawak-ians also have some pretty unique traditional clothes whereby men were spotted wearing a bulky dress or skirt kind of thing. 

Sumpit, a traditional blowpipe first made by natives of Sarawak used as hunting tools and weapons of warfare. Even though they still make an effective hunting tool, the more common modern uses are as props in traditional dances or for decorative purposes. Sumpits are normally made about 6 feet long, which make sit possible to be taken on hunting trips. At this length, they are long enough to be able to aim at preys from a distance. The darts that are normally used in traditional blowpipes are known as damaks, and are most frequently carved from the soft wood of palm trees. After this, they are washed and left out to dry, avoid from direct sunlight. 
setting up the sumpit before aiming at the target

the traditional guitar which I am most impressed by, known as Sape
girls dressed elegantly in their traditional costumes
men spotted in dress!!!!

Bidayuh House

my cheeky dad making fun of my facial expression when I see the skull of animal

Every Bidayuh long house community will have room known as the Head House whereby skulls of their opponents will be retrieved and locked in a big cage. It will subsequently be smoked on top of the fire as they believe that by trapping the skulls, the souls of their opponents will be trapped as well and thus will not harm their tribe in the future. 

 Iban House

 the stage whereby people gather round to celebrate harvest festivals
 the props above my parents' heads are known as Bubu, a traditional tool to catch fish in the river
 natural waterfall

 giant me standing in front of the Penan Hut

 Orang Ulu House
 the houses were built in such a manner to avoid flood as the Orang Ulu happen to stay by the riverbanks
traditional knife, Parang in the making

This marks the end of our first 2 days in Damai, Sarawak. We spent an entire day in the Sarawak Cultural Village and took a lot of pictures. Most importantly, it was an eye opening experience as I got the chance to witness all the traditional cultures of the tribes in Sarawak as well as their respective costumes which I have been studying from textbooks since I was 8/9. Stay tuned for the next part of our Sarawak trip! 

Thursday, December 15

never judge a book by its cover

Hey readers, I am extremely sorry for not posting in quite a while. I have been thinking whether or not to switch to other new platforms with customisable and more creative designs and layouts, however, due to the limited space offered, I have finally decided to stay loyal to Blogger. (Yay?) So just a quick update, I have been busy studying and prepping for my Semester Exam in November and I am glad that it's all over now. My exam actually ended in the beginning of December but it actually took me quite a while to get back to work.

When it comes to prepping for exam and being productive, I have a bad habit having to get my butt at the Starbucks near my area to be productive to crunch up all that I have to study and am extremely dependent on caffeine to stay awake. Starbucks became my second home when it comes to the exam season and I hate to admit this, but I actually enjoy having my soy latte almost 24/7 throughout the period...... Sorry mum, I know you've been telling me to try to stay off coffee, but oh wells heh. 

One fine morning, there I was again, at Starbucks with my friend. We sat at a table on the second floor as we planned to study for Psychology on that particular day. As there are no counters, the atmosphere on the second floor appears to be quieter and more peaceful, which is very crucial when it comes to memorising things. Just then, 4 people came by with iPads and notebooks in their hands and decided to settle down on the table next to us. 

At one glance, I immediately turned to my friend and remarked 'Aw man, here comes these people. They are definitely going to be having a meeting or discussion. It's going to be distracting.' You have no idea how bad I felt right after saying that, until today, I wish I could take back my words. Really. Because, right after the awful remark I made, they sat down and started communicating. However, not a single noise was heard; instead, they were communicating with hand signs. 

I have always told myself not to judge a person by his or her cover but it appears that I am not applying it in my daily life at all. Subconsciously, I still do it and I am extremely ashamed of myself for doing so. For doing what I knew was wrong. I just came across this book 'Tuesdays with Morrie' and I can't agree more with Professor Morrie's wise words, 'Life is a series of pulls back and forth. You want to do one thing, but you are bound to do something else. Something hurts you, yet you know it shouldn't. You take certain things for granted, even when you know you should never take anything for granted. A tension of opposites, like a pull on a rubber band. And most of us live somewhere in the middle. In the end, love wins. Love always wins.' 

The most important lesson which I have learnt through this incident is that, be kind and thoughtful, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Free yourself from judgements by the society or yourself, and spread out love and kindness to every single person you meet, for you never know that just a smile or a good comment will brighten up a person's day.

Stay tuned for more posts and have an amazing day ahead! :-) 

Saturday, October 8

till we meet again

Sorry for not updating my blog for such a long period, I have been slacking much and still far from getting used to my college life. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy my college life as far as I am concern, just trying to get the hang of everything. Please bear with me and I promise that I will start updating my blog consistently from now on :)

So, my brother came back for Summer break from the UK since May and spent a good 4 months with the family. A week before his leave, we planned on a family trip also a short getaway from the hectic and busy city life to Club Med in Cherating, Malaysia. Club Med are 'vacation villages' owned and operated in a number of locations around the world such as Malaysia, Indonesia, Japan, China, Maldives and more. It is like a resort with a variety of facilities and activities well planned for their guests, including Rock Climbing,Yoga Sessions, Gym, Table Tennis, Jungle Trekking, Flying Trapeze and others, free flow of foods and drinks (including beer and certain alcoholic beverages). On top of all these, their main attraction is the friendliest and most energetic GOs (Gentil Organisateur) who are always there for you to make your Club MED experience a better one. 

Club MED Cherating, Malaysia is nestled in the heart of 80 hectares of nature, an eco-friendly jungle beach resort in Malaysia filled with treetop adventures and endless wildlife discoveries which made my getaway with the family a splendid and unforgettable one. 

My family and I spent most of our time by the seaside, walking on the fine sandy beach, savouring the gentle touch of waves under our feet, sea breeze in our face and the sound of the ocean which never stops kissing the shoreline no matter how many times it's sent away...... Just like a quote which I came across,
'The voice of the sea speaks to the soul, the touch of the sea is sensuous, enfolding the body in its soft, close embrace.' 
Kate Chopin

me being super excited when I found a pretty seashell with hints of pink hue at the edge 

casually walking by the beach, enjoying the beauty of nature

 My mother and I also joined the Yoga session every morning and evening by the seaside as we have been learning yoga since the beginning of the year. We were taught by a South Korean Instructor, a friendly person who is always seen with a beaming wide smile, radiating her positive vibes to people around her. Yoga by the beach is one of the most luxurious thing which you could ever experience. Imagine this, being at peace with yourself by the seaside, with the sea breeze gently massaging your face and the voice of the sea, like a person whispering into your ears and draining out all the negativity in your body....... Gosh, I can't resist myself anymore, I just wish that I could be by the beach right now.

 us lying on the beach lounge chair, gazing into the clear blue sky with patches of white fluffy clouds like cotton candy

 me surrounded by autotrophs

I spent one of my evenings at an Acrobatics place, known as the Flying Trapeze. I am an adventurous person who loves taking up challenges and extreme sports everywhere I go. I was more than excited when my senior recommended me to try it out! The GOs were very patient in teaching me the skills and tricks in flying trapeze. After 6 attempts, I finally got the hang of it despite having blisters on both my palms and feet, sunburnt and sore arms as I was required to climb up a ladder to reach the top. This made me realise that determination and persistence is and will always be the drive to achieve success. No matter how bad you are in a specific area or how hard you are struggling to pull through, never tell yourself you can't; instead, hold on to it, believe in yourself and you can definitely do it.

mum and I took the shuttle train to the other beach to explore after the flying trapeze


I am pretty proud of myself for being able to stay on my healthy diet throughout the trip! Kudos to Club MED for providing us a range of foods; healthy. delicious, sophisticated all made with fresh ingredients.

 just my typical appetiser: homemade yoghurt topped with raisins, toasted walnuts, muesli and fruits and a plate of salad consisting of lettuce, tomatoes, onions and watermelon

bagel with lettuce, tomatoes, raw onions, smoked salmon and capers

korean rolls, steamed cauliflower, black bean patty with curry seasoning and fresh lettuce and tomatoes topped with red beans 

In a nutshell, I would like to express my greatest gratitude and appreciation for being able to spend my most unforgettable and memorable getaway with my family. We definitely bonded a lot throughout this trip and got to escape from the reality by forgetting about all the responsibilities that we hold, well, actually not quite much, because I actually brought my law notes along and studied every night before I dozed off. (oops) But in my defence, that's because I have law test the day after I return from my trip. So, just spend a minute, walk outside, stand there, in silence. Look around you, look up at the sky. And contemplate the beauty of everything around you. Please bear with me as I would like to end this post with a quote by the poet, Rainer Maria Rilke,

'When anxious, uneasy and bad thoughts come, I go to the sea, and the sea drowns them out with its great wide sounds, cleanses me with its noise, and imposes a rhythm upon everything in me that is bewildered and confused.'