Sunday, April 25, 2010

Sacrifices are inevitable, but it's temporary

Some things can never go together, like water and fire, summer and winter, liberty and monarchy.

Baking and weight loss don't go together too.

In the past few months, I have been immersed in the world of cooking and baking. It blew me away, especially the latter. There are so many resources available both in and away the computer, thousands of books and even more blogs dedicated wholly to the topic of food. The love for something we live with everyday is everywhere in this world, from here, to America and all the way home in Malaysia. There are so many blogs dedicated to our South-East Asian specialties and all written so well.

No doubt I soon found myself among them, eagerly trying all sorts of recipes found both on the web and in cookbooks. I went crazy (to say the least). I dedicated hours to cooking and baking, something I am certain I could not have done if I remained back at home. I enjoyed every single minute of it, even slaving six full hours alone in the kitchen to bake just one cake.

Unfortunately, I went overboard in this short year (with the bingeing when I first came here and later baking escapades) and gain quite a few pounds. I could feel the effects of the excess weight (it is surprising how little can make such an effect), I felt lazy both mentally and physically and lost substantial interest in my purpose in being here. It took me two weeks being away from this encapsulating way of life in Warwick to get a wake-up call. The efforts to change, so far, are going well: running frequently and eating healthy and the inevitable halt on baking. Of course, there are days (today, for example) I do want to start the oven in the kitchen, but that would steer me off track from my schedule and goals.

That is not to say I will not bake often again. Balance, I believe, is key. For now, I will stay away from baking. But once I am ready and have achieved what I aimed for, I shall return to baking (not with a vengeance, balance balance). This too, is a motivation for me to complete the half-marathon in good time (an apt sign of being ready?)

Til then, goodbye baking.

Please donate =)

Friday, April 23, 2010

KL Marathon: Run For a Cause

As a motivation to lose the UK fats (that is what I am calling "them") and to get fit, I have signed up for the Standard Chartered KL Marathon on 27 June 2010 under the category of half-marathon (21.1km). I will be running with my housemate here, who was the first to come up with such a great idea!

Instead of solely running, I decided to run for charity, which is the National Cancer Society, in hopes to help them raise funds to continue their non-for-profit work. One of their efforts which caught my attention is building public awareness on early detection for cancer. So many times people have to perish to that disease because they were not paying attention their own body and were unable to find out about the tumour growing inside of them until it is too late. So much pain and suffering can be minimised if everyone took steps to watch after themselves. There is no absolute guaranteed way to prevent the disease, no one is an exception. It can occur to anyone, even the healthiest of people (although staying fit and keeping away from smoking does do wonders). Thus, we should all learn to listen to our own vessel and rely less on luck in detecting the illness.

Therefore, this a great opportunity to do two good things. One, donating to this noble cause and to support me in completing the half-marathon. It would mean so much to me if you could spare that little sum. All this support would definitely come in handy, especially during the last leg of the race. Also, please drop any messages such as advice and whatever in the comment box. I would love to hear what you all think about it =)

To encourage more people to take part and to record this special event, I will be writing constantly on this highlight of my life, all the way until the day of the event.

Please take a look at my profile page ( on the marathon page and possibly, donate. If you have any enquiries, please do not hesitate to drop me an email at

Thanks for your time. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Shepard calling wolf

At last there is a story in my mundane life worth mentioning and worth reading.

Yesterday (Tuesday) morning, just before 0900, the fire alarm started ringing. For the first time, I was so sure that it was just a drill testing the system. What made me think so? They have many times done this in the mornings where the alarm would go off for a minute and stop before anyone had time to step out the door (unless you are THAT fearful for your life!).

So, I did what I always do in those situation - hide in the covers of my bed and hoping no one would look through my window, which faces the main road and was uncovered. How so wrong I could be and how stupid I was to do that. Not only did it not stop of a minute, it continued to past 10 minutes mark, half hour, an hour, until it FINALLY ceased at an hour and a half. What an experience to be had with the ridiculously loud alarm ringing in your ears for that long. My mind started altering the "melodies" of the alarm. I am not sure how to explain what I mean, I am no musician after all.

Anyways, being cooped up under THREE layers, one of which is a duvet, for an hour and a half in this season (Spring) is, if I dare say, applaudable. Furthermore, I was terrified of even twitching for fear that an officer would see it through the window. Breathing under the covers started to strain as the air got stuffier and my body was restless, wanting to stretch and get out of the self-made Sahara desert!

Approximately after half an hour (thankfully I had my phone under the covers, which did its best to entertain me=)), I heard sounds of door opening and shutting abruptly. "Oh shit!", the first words that came through my mind. I could hear the noises getting louder and closer. Finally, the inevitable occurred. My blue doors opened and I heard a security guard-sounding (I have no idea why) man talking over his walkie-talkie. It occurred so fast that I couldn't think and could not do anything. I could feel adrenaline fill my pulses into my immovable body, trying to get me up and start running, to get me out of this bed-turned-hell hole. But, I resist, what I could do? Break and jump through my window, like the scenes in Hollywood movies (minus the window being several feet above ground, my room is on the ground floor, not so thankfully)? Or, get up karate-kick the guard? A guard who probably duties as a bouncer at student union.

Luckily, all those were unnecessary. He opened and closed the door as fast as one would if someone asked you to open and close the door, where the other side was just a wall. Nothing other than luck and miracle can explain that. Everyday miracles? XD

It was only an hour after that the alarm stopped. Some time before that, I ventured out of my bed, deciding that I would rather risks the tens of pounds fine (actually, now to think of it, I think it is £100 fine, shit.) than to stay in bed any longer. Never have I so badly wanted to get out of the bed, if only I would feel that way every morning.

In relation to the title above, it could be said that the students are like the villagers, the security is the shepherd, the fire the wolf, with the screams of the boy replaced by a much more annoying alarm. After so many drills, when the actual wolf came, nobody (or just me XD) could not be bothered anymore.

What actually happened was a gas leak (probably from the heaters, since our stoves use electricity). I would consider that another miracle ocurred as the leak did not cause an explosion and kill an innocent, poor girl who was secretly hiding in her covers.


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Two months plus to go..

If only there was no dreaded exams coming up, I would be jumping for joy! Also, something else is hindering from being overly ecstatic. I do something before I go home, which loud-mouth me promised everyone I could tell (weirdly enough, suddenly everyone is reminding me of it.) Gah.. Loud-mouth indeed. Now, everyone is probably sneakily laughing with the told-you-so look. Furthermore, there is more at stake now (namely, £50).

OK, maybe in some ways I am glad I foolishly made that promise. It is one of the reasons that keeps me going.

First of all, thank you Loo Ann Shien and Aberdeen for giving me so much enthusiasm and motivation to actually attempt... (aarrgghh, I am still hesitant in writing this down, mainly due to embarrassment). Now that the ball really is rolling, everything is feeling great and I actually believe I can accomplish it! So, once again, thank you Loo Ann Shien (I will do my best for you too, alright???)

I will write more on this later. Not much mood to blog, oh wells.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

What a shame (again)...

although this time, it is more so than any previous times, considering I am almost a third way done with this milestone called university life. (what?! so soon..)

As I am whizzing past all my references and notes for my third paper tomorrow (which marks exactly half of my exams), I cannot help but feel a sense of disappointment in myself for not fully utilising my resources here (sorry mom and dad for wasting your money=(). Here I am (again) deep in remorse that I have not given the attention to my studies which it indeed required and that I will be very lucky if I even managed to pass my exams (see, confession is out, I am terrified!).

Studying Politics (among other things, such as the E part of EPAIS) is so different than anything else I have studied and it took me close to nine months to start realise it. Also, it is extremely fascinating and humbling. Where should I even start? Politics is so different from all the subjects I have taken previously, the usual science, math and compulsory languages taught in school. Unlike all those, politics is such an agile, vast and ever-confusing topic that is (as much as we pretend to be apolitical) relevant in the real world. I remember my very first politics seminar, my tutor asked, "If politics is the struggle for power, what is considered not to be in politics?" None of us could think of anything.

Nine months on, I have learnt more in this past two to three weeks than I have in my time here in Warwick. As I jump from chapter to chapter, I only have so much time for each topic, having to spread my time equally among everything. In the end, all I have done is skimmed the surface of various components. There is so much more for me to learn in each and every of those topic, which I would have known by now if I had fully utilised my time here. It really is quite a shame. And when second year comes, there would be even more topic and hopefully, things will be different.

For this, I have made a special arrangement for myself and hopefully it will work to remind me of my current position and feelings (only now that I am back in this ditch, I remember feeling the same way before my A-levels and also every other examination I have taken XD the out-of-time part only, some of them were not quite that interesting XD). I have pre- (or is it post-?) dated this post to be published again on 4 October 2010, which is the first day of my second year.

Hmm.. Will it work, future-me?