Tuesday, September 29

Emergency Getaway to St. Petersburg

Once I opened a fortune cookie on Facebook (duh - now life revolves around Facebook for no understandable reason) that said something about going somewhere in a rush and I should be prepared for it.


I think the cookie's prophecy came true today.


Today, suddenly I was told that my best buddy and I had to go to St. Petersburg TOMORROW (wow - now that's quite an emergency decision!) to accompany our university agent and his wife on their Russian sightseeing trip. Then after that, we are to bring them to Moscow and send them off at Domodedovo International Airport, then lastly make our way back home to Kursk. 


What is interesting about this emergency getaway is:
1. It is an all-expense paid trip for two - including transport, accommodation, and food!
2. It is a 6D/7N trip!
3. Both of us got the permission letters from the Dean of Foreign Affairs to skip classes without having to do replacement classes for classes that we are going to miss!
4. The travel destination is St. Petersburg - the most beautiful city in Russia!
5. A chance to go SHOPPING!


Anyway - I haven't packed my bags yet, as I have trouble with it all the time. I want to travel light, but I always ended up carrying a lot more than what I need - which I will realize only halfway in the trip. But I just plan to bring a duffle bag and a tote bag with me. I will most probably be bringing back home some shopping trophies from there, so I'd better make some room in my bags.


I do not know what to expect when I reach there, but I googled for St. Petersburg, and I got a sneak peek of what we might encounter during the trip:











Seriously, I have no idea what these buildings are all about. Later I will be there myself, and I'll take my own pictures then!

Monday, September 28

When Hunger Strikes

MY SITUATION
It is 1.32 a.m. 
I am hungry, and my stomach is growling. 
I have no drinkable water.


MY PROBLEM
I try not to eat after 7 p.m. 
Even if I wanted to cook, the stove is out of order. 
And so is the kettle.


SOLUTION
Just eat - or else risk a sleepless night. 
Make a salad out of random stuff in the fridge. 
No need to drink after eating the salad - it is moist enough.


The Desperado Salad





You will need: 
2 tomatoes
1 cucumber
1/2 green bell pepper
4 crab sticks
A sizeable amount of light mayonnaise
1 tbsp white balsamic vinegar
Some oregano, marjoram, garlic granules, black pepper, and dried basil leaves
Salt and sugar to taste


Method: 
Easy. Wash all veggies. Dice. Put in bowl. Do the same with the crab sticks. Put in vinegar. Pour the mayonnaise until it coats everything nicely. Add zest with spices and salt and sugar. Enjoy.


Preparation time:
Depends on how fast you dice them raw ingredients. I took about 5 minutes to get it all done.

Saturday, September 26

A Shopaholic's Success!



Success: Bought this nice dark purple viscose scarf at Terranova earlier for 399 roubles. Would look nice with my gray Cedarwood trench coat. Or my maroon C2CLook trench coat. OWNED!!!



Success: Bought this sleek green viscose scarf also from Terranova for 399 roubles. Looks good in most of my autumn/winter apparel - especially my O'STIN army green coat. OWNED!!!

Next Mission:


Which one of these Francesco Donni bags I should buy?
1. Canvas Duffle bag, 1690 roubles.
2. Leather Tote bag, 1790 roubles.
3. Hard Canvas Portfolio bag, 1790 roubles.

OH NO. The shopping craze has just begun...O_o

The future of my Winter Ultimate Shopping Spree in Central Europe is somewhat uncertain.

Friday, September 25

Mediocrity


Mediocrity. Is it really insulting? (picture courtesy of Flickr.com)


[MEDIOCRITY]
The quality of being not very good, just acceptable but not very good.

I was chatting with a friend today. We talked about random stuff. We talked about him. We talked about me. Then a little bit more about me. Then it was about me, again. He said that I was very talented. He said I was a jack-of-all-trades.

Now, I haven't heard this of word in ages.




A jack-of-all-trades all-in-one gift hamper.


The jack-of-all-trades is naturally a person who is capable of doing a wide variety of tasks, as they possess a multitude of such skills which enables them to do so.

Oh. WOW. That's great.

Suddenly it struck me that MAYBE this jack-of-all-trades is not so much of a good thing after all. PERHAPS he is CAPABLE of doing a wide variety of tasks, but not really GOOD at neither one of them?

Then I reviewed myself. I am quite sure that I am capable of carrying out a wide variety of tasks, and employ certain skills which not all might have - but I found out that I wasn't good enough in any of them.

I am an average student - never the Genius Mathematician.
I am an average musician - never the modern day Mozart.
I am an average cook - never the next Chef Gordon Ramzay.
I am an average athlete - never in a league with Roger Federer.
I am an average person - never the twin of Brad Pitt.
I live an average lifestyle - never second to Bill Gates.

I am very much an AVERAGE ACHIEVER.

So does that mean I am just MEDIOCRE?

Bummer. I never wanted to be mediocre. I've always wanted to be one of the best - at least in one field. Sports. Education. Social. Is it too much to ask? Maybe. Then I thought further:

Some people are born filthy RICH - but might look unattractive, or even slightly retarded.
Some people are born to be GENIUSES - but live a poor life and looks undesirable.
Some people are blessed with GOOD LOOKS - but unfortunately a bit slow in thinking and dirt poor.

Sometimes if they are better off, they'd have 2 out of the 3 desirable qualities.

Lucky ones get all 3.

How about those who gets average scores for all 3? Not so good, but not so bad either. A bit undecisive here. Although you don't get the high-ranked priviledges, you won't get to hit the bottom of the drain either.

So, is it okay to settle for MEDIOCRITY?

*will be continued*

Thursday, September 24

What I wish for Christmas...no - I want it ASAP!

I was so relieved when it was finally the end of my insanely boring Gynae class today. My grouppies were all hyped up about the 50% discount offer on the pork meat in Billa. So me and my best bud decided to check it out - and maybe we will be having some nice steak tonight.

Unfortunately, it seems that the hot offer was so hot - that all the meat on offer was all long gone by the time we reached Billa. I guess a mob of dedicated housewives stormed the place earlier and snatched up each and every bit of meat that was there.

Oh well, since we are here in the Pushkin Mall - might as well go window shopping at all the designer shops around. Maybe we could find a good bargain or two.

When we entered Francesco Donni, I saw a really really REALLY smashing mini-duffle bag. It looks somehow like the Burberry Warwick Bag - only cheaper :)



Should I buy that bag or not?

But it costs 1790 roubles which is about RM200+.

Aargh - it is hard being a shopaholic!

Running Late for Lecture




Recently, I have the strange knack of waking up exactly A MINUTE before my alarm sets off in the morning. I woke up for a few times at 7.29 a.m. Then I would wait for the alarm to ring, only to shut it off and then most probably continue sleeping, or just lying pointlessly on the bed, daydreaming - AGAIN. Usually if I fell back asleep, I would wake up the next 15 minutes or so - thanks to my secondary backup alarm at 7.45 a.m.

BUT TODAY IT WAS A SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT STORY.

Woke up as usual, at 7.29 a.m. Waited for the alarm to ring. Shut it off. Laid pointlessly on the bed, daydreaming. Fell back asleep. WOKE UP AT 8.30 a.m.

And I have Gynaecology lecture at 9 a.m.

(Usually I don't go for boring morning lectures e.g. Epidemiology (useless), Paediatrics (lecture was practically non-existent since 2-3 years ago, as everyone got the lecture handouts), Dermatology (same case as Paeds.) Social Medicine (crappy) and some others...)

Gynaecology is a bit different. It is A BIT exciting compared to the aforementioned lectures - although I hate this subject. And I hate the Head of Department. She is an EVIL BITCH. Whenever her name was mentioned, it was somehow synonymous to titles such as The Witch, The Bitch, The Crazy Lady, and the list goes on and on and on...she is just plain psycho.

I got on her wrong edge once, where I was BLAMED for sleeping in her lecture (Hello, its the person beside me who was trying hard not to appear sleeping! She could just have painted fake eyes on her eyelids.) But then not long after that I was CAUGHT (my bad) "illegally photographing" her lecture slides. She shouted at me and cried foul for infringement of her copyrights to the lecture material (Hello, I knew that you copied the information from some other sources - because the slides were written in PERFECT ENGLISH. And how does your gramatically- and phonetically-challenged Russianized English match up to your allegedly "copyrighted slides"? It is not even THAT close (emphasizing the distance between my thumb and my forefinger)



Okay, so I have been a little bit emotional just now. So - where was I? Oh yeah, I woke up late at 8.30 a.m. So I did my best to take a bath, dress and groom up in 30 minutes (which I kept on thinking was personally impossible) although my best timing was 42 minutes and 34 seconds. So miraculously, I did it in about 25 minutes. HOORAY, new personal record. (thanks to the swept back hairstyle which took only minutes to complete.) So I was set to go at 8.55 a.m. As I was getting ready to go, another problem surfaced.

WHERE IS MY HOUSE KEY?!?!?!

Arrgh. Things are never there when you really need them, and when you don't exactly have much time to go treasure hunting for them. Sigh. Arrgh. Nevermind. Hope my roomies are in the room when I go back home later. Thanks to that ridiculous key-hunting event, I wasted another 5 minutes of my precious time - which I could have used to hightail my sorry late ass to lecture.

So, I hurried...



Hurried past a traffic jam across the street (luckily I have moved to a place nearby the University - so traffic jams are a thing of the past now)...



But I had to run up a few flights of stairs in the main corpus still...

And at last I reached the door of the lecture hall.

Okay. Deep breath. Regain composure. Straighten coat and scarf. Open the door...and OH NO. Is that HER  voice? The Evil Witch's voice? She is giving the lecture for today?????

NOOOOOOOOOO~~~~!!!!!

And I'm nearly 15 minutes late. Ah well, I might as well just go back home and do something else rather than to attempt suicide by trying to enter the hall when SHE is the lecturer and I am terribly late for her lecture. There goes my attendance mark - into the drain!

Well, at least I can take the slow walk back home :)

p/s: I DESPISE YOU, EVIL BITCH.

Monday, September 21

Unproductive Day



Today is another unproductive day by my standards. I could have done at least something, anything that has a significant amount of benefits, but NO - I did not do anything at all. Hence, the term UNPRODUCTIVE. So, as I sit UNPRODUCTIVELY at my table, I started to day-dream (which I do so often now and then) about a lot of stuff. First thing that comes to mind is about the upcoming practical exams - how I wished that the hospital was blown away by the chilly autumn wind so that I do not have to take that exam. Or I could polymorph the examiner into a monkey.

 Then suddenly I thought of the nice lavender pashmina scarf I saw last Sunday in Terranova. Oh and also the other black arab scarf. Only 399 roubles each item! Should I buy it or not? I need to spice up my wardrobe for this season - are scarves the right choice? Or perhaps I should find a new trench coat? Hmm. Yet to find the latter. Sigh~





[Oh purple pashmina scarf, how I adore you...how I long for you to be wrapped around my neck and draped across my chest...]



[Oh black Arab scarf, how I adore thee as well! The rough but warm feeling of you around me is so inviting, how I want you to be among my most adored items!]

Enough shopping for me if I wanted to enjoy myself in Central Europe in the winter. I hope I can contain my shopping urges until then. But, its HARD - argh, NOOOOOO!


Then as I stared at my wall, I realized how cluttered it was with ALL KINDS OF STUFF I collected from all around the world; postcards, shopping tags, pictures, a bronze athletics medal - all arranged around my prized lucky Adidas poster. In a way it looked somehow creative, colorful and messy - which practically screams ME. No wonder my friends said that just by looking at my wall and my table, people can really REALLY judge who am I. Hey- I thought judging others was a sin?


[Just a small portion of my personal paraphernalia on the table. Spray, mousse, cream, gel, gum, wax, clay...you name it I've got them all! Just look at the amount of chemicals that I load upon my hair. If they had voices, they'd probably be screaming their roots off by now.]


Oh crap. When will I be freed from non-productivity?

Saturday, September 19

Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri




Wishing all Muslims in the whole world a happy Eid al-Fit'r especially to all Malaysians. 
Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri, Maaf Zahir Batin.


Being far away from Malaysia for Raya or any other big festive occasion really strikes me with self pity. How is it that I am attending classes on a National Holiday??? While everyone else is enjoying the holidays back at home, I am here doing what everyone else are NOT SUPPOSED TO DO. Sigh.


This however, taught me a valuable lesson - which I have, for countless times already, learnt through I wade across the waters of life.


NEVER TAKE THINGS FOR GRANTED.


Yes, never take things for granted - no matter how big, nor how small the thing maybe. Once you are not able to experience it any more, you will start to think about how good it felt when it was still there. Same thing goes for Hari Raya. It used to be just "another holiday" back in Malaysia, but since living here in Europe, I kind of miss all the good times.


Top 5 things I like about Hari Raya:


1. You get at least 2 days of holidays.
A good time to get the family to gather together. I don't get much time with my family because everyone is busy with their work and studies. Now, come to think of it - I kind of regret the fact that I didn't make much effort to spend time with my family whenever opportunity arises. 


2. You can go and eat free food at people's open houses.
Whenever I go out beraya, I will usually target the houses which serve lemang and beef rendang with lots and lots of kuih raya. How do I do that? I'd call in earlier and asked about the menu offered! LOL.


3. I get to see people get dressed up (finally) in fashion-disaster-stricken Malaysia.
Malaysia, in my opinion is one of a country stricken with the fashion disaster syndrome. I don't think the population in making a commendable effort in trying to look good and appealing. So during festivities, this condition usually self-alleviates as a small percentage of the nation dresses up to celebrate the big day.


4. I get to wear my baju melayu without looking ridiculous - it's my favourite national costume!
I have a myriad of national costumes in my wardrobe - but my definite favourite is the baju melayu cekak musang. It is very light and comfortable, elegant if worn with a matching samping songket, and no matter how fugly a guy is - he will get extra points for wearing it!


5. I get duit raya!
Besides getting free food from the open houses which I went to - I also got some pocket money! Like the hong bao, it is also presented in small paper packs, but it is green in color. Who cares about the packaging anyway - I'm more concerned with the contents of it!

Thursday, September 17

10 Reasons To Have Sex (With My Boyfriend) - No pun intended.

Today while eating I found out that I ran out of mineral water. Drats. So I grabbed my cellphone and wallet, and gingerly got up from my seat which I have been warming for the past hour. I have to go to the kiosk downstairs to buy one. As I got down the stairs, I saw there were a few peculiar paper pamphlets lying curiously on the windowsill. A closer look got me shocked:




10 Reasons To Have Sex (With My Boyfriend)
I'm Afraid I'll Lose Him...I Can't Bear That


Whoa. SHOCKING. Now sex is so openly publicized? Why I did not know about it?
Then I quickly grabbed both of the pamphlets and immediately ran to the lift. I'll read them on the way.

Written inside were the ultimate 10 reasons to have sex (with my boyfriend) - no pun intended LOL. 


1. Besides, everyone's doing it.
2. I enjoy sex.
3. I like that it gives me control.
4. Sex makes me feel loved and attractive.
5. I'm in love. He's the only one for me.
6. It brings us close together.
7. We've dated a long time. It's the next step.
8a. He will break up with me if I don't - he says if "I Love Him" I'll do it.
8b. He cannot control himself, he was made that way and must have sex - it's either me or someone else.
9. I owe it to him.
10. It's not that big a deal.


O-okay. Right. Whoever wrote this must be freaking disturbed. Hey - there were 11 reasons altogether! Number 8 is a repeat! 
Main tipu. Cakap tadi ada 10. But seriously - are these real reasons?


Well, if I were to rephrase these "reasons" to a personal perspective:


1. Doesn't mean I am doing it because Besides, everyone's doing it.
2. I enjoy sex better if I get an orgasm.
3. I like that it gives makes me lose control.
4. Sex makes me feel loved and attractive. tired and a dirttttttty.
5. I'm in love. He's the only one for me - for now. Dunno bout later though.
6. It brings us lose together into one another.
7. No matter whether if We've dated a long time or not. It's almost always the first, if not the next step. 
8a. He will not break up with me if I don't - he says if "I Love Him" I'll do it eventually.
8b. He cannot control himself, he was made that way and must have sex - it's either has to be me or and  someone nobody else.
9. I want to do owe to him .
10. It's not that big a deal - hello, you are stark naked for God's sake!


Ooh - I'M BAD. no, WICKED!


But as I read further, the pamphlet is all about NOT DOING sex (with your boyfriend - p/s: i like the bracket concept, it is like somehow pointing towards something *wink* LOL.) before marriage.


Ohh...that is why. Only now I know better loh. Takpelah....

Saturday, September 12

1Malaysia: Good Slogan + Lame Execution = Bad Impression?

I guess everyone who considers him/herself a Malaysian should now be more than familiar with this revolutionary phrase:

1Malaysia
Pencapaian Diutamakan, Rakyat Didahulukan.

Which translates into "One Malaysia. People first. Performance now."

Well, and I am sure that everyone who considers him/herself a Malaysian should ALSO know that it brings up mixed reactions: 

Mr. A: I sapot lah the government if like this. Hidup 1Malaysia.
Mrs. B: Very pretentiouslah this slogan. I tak nak lah.
Miss C: Wei, like this kenot wor...must support government de.
Mr.D : Ei kawan, what is this lah? Aiyoo...where got 1Malaysia? Always will berat sebelah one...
Mr. E: No bah. The kerajaan will tolong all the rakyat bah kan? Then we all aramai iti lah!
Miss F: Nadailah...bulak nyak government!

But I am not surprised that something that was meant purely for good intentions could escalate to something extreme such as:


Okay...this is a bit over lah. Scary. Some are a little bit funny:

Alamak...tiba-tiba Mongolia pulak. Now we are promoting Mongolia as well? 

Speaking of Mongolia...


Who could now forget the beautiful Altantuya Shaariibu? (And for those Russian-educated this is her name in Mongolian: Шаарийбуугийн Алтантуяа) Kesian her kena bom to pieces. She could have been a strong candidate to represent Mongolia to Miss Universe. Sad, so sad.

Thanks to the media, not only we got to know about the the girl who was literally non-existent before (I mean, no one knew about her at all before her death. Then suddenly she was all over the place, sometimes found even in the inside part of a nasi lemak newspaper packaging.) - but also about some other people , i.e.  a missing Indian man? an allegedly murdered chinese man? It's surprising that I know these people much more than I know my neighbour! I didn't even know my neighbour bought a new car! I'd have to agree one thing though - news travels fast.

Those were what the adults are saying. One question - have you ever thought of what the children has to say about 1Malaysia? A young artist has his/her own point of view.


And this is what the artist commented on his/her own picture: 

"This is a pic which I draw to enter my school's 'Hari Kebangsaan' competition. For your information, 'Hari Kebangsaan' is Malaysia's national day. Furthermore, the word '1 Malaysia' in the pic is my country's latest slogan. This competition is compulsary for all the students in my school."

Aww. So innocent. So cute. Poor thing the artist doesn't know anything that is happening in the country nowadays as it is not exactly as peaceful as depicted in the picture. Ignorance is bliss. Sigh.


So - what now? 1Malaysia? Personally I like the concept. It's catchy. It's urm, practical. And it's marketable! Don't believe me? Take a look at this Frenchman's own rendition of his understanding of 1Malaysia:




This is what I call rakyat didahulukan, pencapaian diutamakan. 
Why? This Frenchman opened the eatery to dahulukan food service to the rakyat, and at the same time he utamakan his financial pencapaian. 
Agree?


Whatever it is, it is up to everyone actually to decide what does 1Malaysia means. 
But I am sure that EVERYONE will surely agree if I tagged 1Malaysia as a GOOD SLOGAN but POORLY EXECUTED.


And for the record, I would like to say that the 1Malaysia concept are actually perfectly grasped by our sesame-street watching generation. Maybe we could learn a thing or two from them :)




Crossing my fingers to a better future for Malaysia.

Friday, September 11

Eating Me Alive


Recently I did something wrong.

Terribly wrong.

I knew it was wrong from the start.

But I couldn't help but to ignore my moral conscience and to just go forward.

Now the guilt settles in.

And it is eating me alive...


Eating Me Alive
Words and Music by Maksim Markusevich

My conscience tells me so,
But I refused to admit,
I didn't want to let go,
But it's eating away at me, bit by bit...

I thought I've made a promise,
But how could my heart chose to refuse,
Now I'm in such a big crisis,
I know I have to pay my dues...

Digging deep,
Deep down inside,
Whether I'm awake or asleep,
It's eating me up alive...
Deep, going deep,
The more I lied, the more I cried,
To myself I can no longer keep,
It hurts, it eats me alive...

They thought I had it easy,
But I was putting up a front,
And there's no one else to blame but me,
So it is me I need to confront...

It hurts...it hurts...it hurts...

It hurts as I could only whisper voiceless words,
And my cries go unheard...
I wish to You I surrendered,
Long ago before I was captured,
I hope it's not too late as I struggled then stumbled and stood but staggered,
In You I try to find peace and comfort...

Digging deep,
Deep down inside,
Whether I'm awake or asleep,
It's eating me up alive,
So so deep,
I tried, I cried, but I still lied,
To myself I can no longer keep,
It hurts, I'm living a lie,
It hurts, it's eating me up alive...