Saturday, December 27, 2008

Pretty Pictures & кошка

Hello everybody. Meet my asian kitty with cat eyes.

I love my kitty very much.

And these are the pictures from last week where Pennsylvanialand (where I am right now) was totally swathed in a blanket of ice.

See! Told you! Frosty wonderland!

So pretty isn't it? Take a closer look...

I sucked the ice off one. It wasn't very tasty.

I also ate one icicle off the chair.

And another from under the table.

The sun was making everything shine shine sparkle!




Poor кошка didn't have any shoes on but I wanted her to experience the feeling of walking on ice.

But I had shoes on.

After a while she decided the ice was actually pretty enjoyable though.

And this was what every blade of grass was covered in.

Don't they look tasty? I had one.

In case you didn't know, I love my silly cat.

I also love Tanya's Christmas tree. See how small and cute it is? My parents bought a tree that was three times the size of the one in the picture, but it looked really ridiculous since we didn't have that many ornaments and it ended up looking very awkward.

I think we should just get a small cute one next year so it'd look at least normal with less ornaments hanging on the tree. Or maybe we should get more ornaments. I don't know. I'm not into the whole tree thing really... I feel bad for the tree.

Why did we have to cut it down just so we could hang plastic crap on it and throw it out later? It could've grown to be tall and big... A home for countless birds and squirrels and bugs... A big shady giant giving out fresh air for the mornings and shadows to hide under during hot afternoons. Instead, it will be burnt along with thousands of others. And all for what?

Sometimes I can't tell anymore if my roads are getting longer or shorter.

They have all started to look the same to me.

I had to work around here during Christmas' Eve. The pretty landscape reminded me of the Calvin & Hobbes cartoon strips in the winter. Please go google them. They are so pretty!!! And funny...

And that's me doing something very productive in the bathroom.

The next morning brought surprises under our funny tree.

Oh he was so thrilled.

Max got a kitchen set, that nemo on the side and a cup from me that he's holding. I think he likes the swirling sparkles inside.


My plans for NYE are still very fuzzy. I have the means, but I don't have the means. You know what I mean? Yesterday morning I was going to be in NYC for NYE. Then come evening, and I decided I was going to the Poconos. Then today it all fell apart and it looks like I may be headed up to NYC again.

Oh why is this such a headache?

To top it all up, I got a reminder that rent has to be paid in a few days.
I still haven't run since my injury. But I went to the Russian banya today and I feel a bit better after a few days of diarrhea, weird sleeping and eating patterns.
I don't know how to feel anymore. I am so out of it. I miss running terribly.
And. I haven't spoken to God in a while. I miss him too.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


Yesterday was such a weird day. I went back to my high school for alumni day but most of the teachers whom I wanted to meet had left the school already. I remembered why I hated everyday in that dreary building and that was the end of it.

After stuffing myself with sushi at Minado's Japanese buffet, I spent a very unpleasant night going in and out of the bathroom. Never in my life have I appreciated the clean efficiency of the toiletbowl so much. My temperature flew skywards as I remembered what it was like to be in the wild without any toilets or enough tissue. What if I had diarrhea then? Unwilling to succumb to insanity, I hopped into bed prompty at 2000 and prayed that the pain would die.

Ooh and I'm working today! I couldn't say no because they pay double on holidays.

My tummy condition has improved considerably.

Now I'm just trying to decide what to do for New Year's Eve. Go to Times Square in NYC or go up to the Poconos with Tanya. Or or or or.... BANYA!

I miss you so much banya....

So I've been thinking... and I think I would like to go camping or fishing soon...

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Frosty Pennsylvanialand


How do I describe the way I'm feeling right now? How do I translate my emotions into Singaporean-taught British Englund, I mean, English?

Usually I'd just post up pictures in place of a thousand words, but silly me. I left my camera wire things at home in Jersey and now I'm in Pennsylvania so I can't put my pictures onto the computer.

Speaking of Jersey and Pennsylvania.

While I was in Jersey, we had a pretty good snowstorm that covered my entire car in ice and snow. I had to scrape my windows free of the snowy damage before driving down to my parent's in Pennsylvania.

Driving from one state to the other, I saw the landscape change from snow covered roads, to nothing covered nothing, to ice covered everything.

EVERYTHING here in suburban Pennsylvania is covered in ice! Every blade of grass, every dried twig and tree branch... All glossed over and shining in the sun right now! And that's what made me so deliciously happy.

Just looking at all the glittering ice in the bright sun and the blue blue blue skies, the sound of birds chirping and the sound of dripping from the melting icicles hanging everywhere..... Two words popped in my head: Russian Spring. The trees look superduper yummy (and I would know because I ate a few popsicles hanging from the tree) and prettier than any Christmas tree in the departmental stores.

I don't know why. I feel as if God is saying Hi.

Shit I always forget the wires for my camera.
Just when I need them.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

A Postful of Rhetorical Question Marks

Everyday my life passes me by like a wave. Back and forth, on and on. Life has almost turned into a rhythm, a habit that is unbreakable like a link of chains that stretches into nothingness.

Inevitably we ask ourselves why? Why was I born? Why am I here and what should I do with this life?

Philosophers, theologians.... yabber yabber yabber. That's all they do. On and on about what life should be and why this, why that. Before you know it, they're dead and just another page in our history book and another question on that final exam.

It's overwhelming, the waves and waves of ideas that come with each generation. But onward we tread the paths of destiny, a whole generation of us moving towards an unknown. The known is uncertain and we can't even be certain of certainty. So why try?

Why should we fight wars, have boyfriends, drink kegs of beer, study Math, get a job... why should we be the best that we can be, if we can't even define what "best" means? Why should we do good for others if we don't even know what is good for ourselves? Who can answer these questions so definitely that we'll never ever have to ask another question anymore? Isn't everything in life meaningless then?

We gather riches but we can't enjoy them when we die.
We have as many children as we can but we can't enjoy their company when we die.
We try to get those As, try to get that perfect GPA, try to get that well-paying job, all for what?
So we can avoid pain during this life only to end up in the same place where some starving homeless drugged-up man is heading?

Pointless. Meaningless.

Some call if Faith, others call is self-delusion. So how will you have it? What will you do? You only get this one second, this one chance. There are no second tries, no reruns, U-turns or replay buttons. You run into a wall and you have to face it. You jump into the ocean and you have to swim in it.

Some say that the middle road is possible. But is it really? You can only do one thing at any single moment in time. The only way you can take a middle road is if you do two or more things at the same time. But can you? Do you even know what you're doing right now? Reading this? Are you really?

We all live by faith whether we are atheists or Christians or Buddhists. Because there is nothing we know for certain, why then do we go forward? Why do we keep living, keep pushing, keeping making choices? Because we have the capacity for faith? To believe in something enough to do it. Even when we don't feel our faith, it is there. Every action requires faith to do it. If you did not have faith in your existence, why would you bother looking into the mirror or saving yourself from the fire? You cannot prove your existence can you? Countless philosophers have tried and still they cannot prove anything. Nobody can prove Math's finality of truth either. Human logic is so weak that the best we can do is to acknowledge its weakness.


Is there even a point in asking why?

I live by faith and I've chosen mine. Call me delusional. Whatever.

Whew ok now that's done... On to daily life!

Tomorrow I will take my last final exam and finally get some time to um.. I don't know yet! I went for a job interview at some cafe place and methinks that I got the job. But that's just what I think... not that those thoughts are going to pay me or anything.

Yesterday we had our first real snowfall ever! But the weatherman cheated because early this morning, the bare 1 centimetre of it had melted away in the humid air and all I had left were foggy car windows. So much for white Christmases. Please. Give me a nice frosty blue sky this year and I'll be happy! Though I doubt that's going to happen. I don't think Santa will make it this year either since his homeland is literally falling into pieces as it is. Not that we're missing much anyway. All those toys that he's been putting under the trees recently are just plastic crap that make sounds when you press certain buttons. What did you say? I'm too big to get toys? Oh yeah! I got an Ipod last Christmas ok! Yeah! Plastic and makes sounds!

No no no I'm not complaining... I love my Ipod. Just... why can't Ipods save the world from global warming? And I'd love to type "lol" right now but it doesn't quite go with this post does it?

I know I used to say I loved that global warming was happening because that might mean warmer days; but to be honest, now that I've fallen in love with cold weather, it may not be such a pleasant thing after all. I guess you don't miss the snow until the uh... sky.... warms.. up?

Speaking of more consumer ways, the school trainer encouraged me to get a new pair of running shoes since I've gotten shin splints (if you don't know what this is, just know that it hurts like hell and it's not in a spot that you can massage effectively.... NO! NOT THAT SPOT EITHER! It's on your leg duh... from running... because you know, I run with my legs... Jeez I'm lame). I can't run. So.

I'm going SWIMMING tomorrow! Yay me! Chlorinated water, here I come!

My cat says hi. Though you know, I kind of just made that up, but it's the thought that counts right? Assuming cats can think...

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Field & Stream

I was actually about to shut off my computer and go to sleep when the idea of blogging popped into my head as it usually does- out of the blue.

I've been spending the past few days back in Pennsylvania. Good ol' Pennsylvania.

Coming back here actually feels like I'm entering a different country you know? Pennsylvania is so... woodsy and old people driving SUVs slowly and field after field after field... While Jersey is so smelly and everybody under the sun weaving in and out of traffic at an obscene speed and factory after smokestack after landfill after oil refinery.

But to be honest I don't know which I prefer at this point.

I suppose both places are cool in their own ways. I think I've had a Jersey overdose though. Recently I've been really missing Washington State like crazy and seriously contemplating moving there after I graduate college.

I just miss the mountains so much. The clean air, the scenery, the pace of life, the people... everything. Whenever I feel depressed or just slow in the head these days, I remember the way I felt as I watched the start of a 5k race in downtown Seattle- I can't even explain it. The skies were blue, everybody in the crowd was excited yet not in the New York kind of way. People cared, but about the right things.

Too be honest I am getting really tired of Manhattan.

World class city, whatever.

The noise, dirt and confusion cannot triumph cleanliness, order and clean air.

People are so different in the East coast compared to the West. I don't know why any East coaster who's ever been to the West would not want to just pack up their belongings and move there for good.

I can't explain this too well so... I'll leave off.


I finally got my car window fixed on Saturday. While I was waiting at the car dealership, I picked up a magazine that was lying on the coffee table next to me. It was an issue of Field and Stream- a magazine about hunting, fishing, camping and all the other cool outdoorsy stuff that men like to read about.

The weird thing was, as I flipped through the pages, I couldn't stop reading!
I mean, I never ever liked reading about this kind of stuff- how to catch your biggest steelhead, what's the best sleeping bag for cold weather, etc; but now I found myself greedily lapping up the articles. It was so interesting to see how other people did things when it comes to surviving in the wild. I wish I read this magazine earlier before I went off and did my own thing the past two summers.

I have so many thoughts flying through my head right now so I'm sorry if I seem to be spazzing a bit with my thoughts here.

I have three options for New Years' Eve now.

1) Go home and be with the family (really don't want to)
2) Be in Times Square with people (always wanted to)
3) House in the Poconos (mountains in Pennsylvania) with Tanya and pals (really want to)

But as usual, things don't come free and I can't always have what I want.
I guess I'll just wait and see what options I'm left with in a week or two.


I'm getting my fire back. For running. Now that school is done and I've only got 3 more finals left, I'm getting it back. I went for a long long run today around a reservoir and it was very nice. I haven't had those moments in a long time now.

Alright my eyes are failing me and all I can think about is this
Martin's Note.


Monday, December 08, 2008


Yes! This is it! The last stretch!

The last day of classes is tomorrow, then my finals start and they'll end on the 16th...

I have a job interview today in NYC.

A possible job interview tomorrow in NYC.

I also have had zero dollars in my wallet for two days now. (That includes the bank).

Two bills have arrived.

God said hi to me in church yesterday.



No sarcasm here! I just finally realised that there's no point in being upset about being broke and jobless all the time. Obviously things are not going to be easy. Nobody ever had an easy life.

I'm just feeling happy for all the other things that I have in my life.

Cliche but true: things could be a lot worse.

Instead of complaining I am going to be positive about my situations and stop giving everybody sad vibes.

That's it!
In my troubles always I have a Friend and a Comforter, what more could I ask for?

Friday, December 05, 2008

Random Chapstick Talk At Midnight

Wow! Ok... two posts within 24 hours. Haven't done that in a long time.

So here I am with my bowl of strawberries to one side, a warm cup of chamomile with honey, Ugly Betty season 2 on pause and M on Skype.

I've been relaxing here for some time now, you know, cherishing the thought that even though I'm broke and have enough worries to wrinkle my forehead permanently, I'm still able to sit here, laugh at my naughty cat trying to scratch her way out of the box, eat a bowl of strawberries and complain about being cold.

Which by the way, is totally relevant. I still haven't turned the heat on all winter (a fact which I seem to be really proud of) and I pretty much constantly have at least two layers on.

I know. I'm such a different person from the one last year who was wearing flipflops all winter long even in the snow. That person was a retard. I don't even know who she is. I just pretend to know her but really I don't.

This year, I'm always in at least two layers, always wearing my ugly fake Costco UGGS, always having a pair of gloves in my bag.... But actually you know what, I don't carry chapstick around with me anymore.

Santos asked me the other day, "why don't you use chapstick?"

So I pointed at my lips, smiled and replied "look at my fabulous lips. Do I look like I need chapstick?"

Then he rolls his eyes and goes "psh whatever... (and then he does the silent equivalent of a "lol")".

But you know what, it's true. Do we really need chapstick? I mean seriously, I haven't touched moisturiser, chapstick, foot cream, facial masks, facial soap and all that junk for about half a year now. As for facial soap, it's been almost two years now.

And checking with the mirror, nope. I don't see extreme acne nor do I see extreme shine.

So seriously, do we need all that junk?

To be honest I think my lips get more chappy when I used chapstick. Plus you always feel like you just kissed a melting candle or something. Not to mention smelling like bubblegum all the time is sooooo 80s.

Which by the way people, is almost 30 years ago.


Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy You-Know-What, Everybody

So Thanksgiving is officially upon us and I am still not asleep at this ghastly hour of 0100.

I really miss my best friend Cassandra. I just had a long conversation with her over Skype and it just reminded me about how much fun we used to have together- just not even doing anything you know? I miss having those kinds of people around. The ones that you can just hang out with without having to do anything really.

These days it's kind of hard to just hang out without doing anything because we all look for things to do when going out with friends. Some kind of purposeful event has to bring people out together; whether it's going out to dinner, for a movie, or to a bar... I think I was really lucky to find friends whom I could just veg out with in silence without really expecting anything to happen in the day. I miss those peaceful times.

I had fun today in the city with a new acquaintance. Another weird twist in my weird life I should say.

I came home feeling really tired from my rather intense track practices. My butt has been aching all day and I pretty much walked around in pain the whole time, but I guess that's just the price you pay for a nice butt.

I'm approximately one-eighths through Anna Karenina by Tolstoy and it's like a Russian Gossip Girl thing from back in the day. I love the drama! Reading again recently made me realise how much I missed it.

My everything is hurting today actually, not just my butt. My arms, neck, thighs, abs, etc... they are all protesting in their own way and I don't know how else to satisfy them. I wish I had a little kid to jump all over my back right now, or a really good masseuse named Sven or something. Even my cat walking on my tummy right now feels good.

I am driving back to PA tomorrow morning for the Thanksgiving meal at my aunts.

Whoopee! Food!

I just hope I don't fall asleep at the wheel on the long drive home... again...

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Spork & Foons

I did this on Paint.

I AM SO HAPPY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I can't wait for this weekend!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So it's been raining all day and you already know what kind of wonders that does for my mental health.

But no matter! I shall spend this weekend recovering more before getting back into routine. Definitely more beach and banya time is required.

I know what you're thinking... Beach? At this time of the year? In such weather?

But seriously... beaches aren't just beautiful under the blinding sun in the heat of summer. It's just as lovely at night when it's cold- the air is still and all you hear is yourself breathing and the waves far down below the boardwalk... Besides, it's not like I'm going to be lying on the sand in my teeny weeny 'kini... I'll be all wrapped up in my scarf holding a hot something (not sure what yet but I'll decide) with my Ipod plugged a few milimetres away from my eardrums.

Lounge music? Check.

Oh I am so ready for this...

Ok so I just realised that I haven't watched TV since May this year. I can't even remember the last time I watched a movie in a movie theatre; which is just as well because nobody wants to go with me anyway. I KNOW! I SOUND LIKE SUCH A LOSER SOMETIMES!

But I'm really just playing cool like that. Cool people don't watch TV or go to movie theatres. They catch all of their films and shows online for free at their own schedules.

Know what I've been saying recently? Really stupid stuff. Like, "sporks & foons", "toffee & cea", "fack & field"... What's wrong with my brain? Can't transmit linguistic information anymore? Am I getting old or something?

Enough of this silly post.

I'm off to bed.


I've been a horrible student today. Some of you know why... D:

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Land of the Setting Sun

So here I am sitting on my bed being tired... typing away on my laptop... Listening to the same song that's playing on this blog right now.

I've been having a rather strange week so far- but I'm sure my thoughts will rearrange themselves sooner or later (hopefully by this weekend). They always have a way of rearranging themselves before the week is over.

Anyways... I woke up this morning feeling like a piece of cabbage that's been left on the stove to boil for hours. By the time I got to school, my brain had already melted and was about to drip out of my ears. I walked around in a semi-daze thinking about the most random stuff ever. When I talked to people it was almost as if I were talking to them through a glass window- I never really knew if my words reached them or not and I only had a slight idea of what my lips were saying...
Though the past two mornings were really sunny, the afternoons have generally come down to this- stark, white, cold and brief.

Oh yes. It's that time of the year again.

You guys back in Singapore have no idea how nice it is to have the sun for such a long time compared to here. At 1700, the sun is pretty much gone and you're plunged into a deep cold darkness. It's sad because after school ends at 1400, you really only have 2-3 hours of sunlight then it's gone.


Just like that.
Monday I worked at 7 World Trade Center on the 45th floor. The view was breathtaking.
Watching the sun set over NYC (and it was a 360 degree view) made me realise how many sunsets I'd missed watching in my lifetime. I mean, seriously... How many beautiful sunrises and sunsets have occurred already that I've let slip me by?

Of course if I had all the time and resources in the world I'm sure I'd be a lot better at catching sunsets and sunrises... In the meantime, only the lucky few get to pause from their personal ratraces to enjoy such a special moment; so when I do get the chance, I feel blessed.

Most of us have been asked this question before: which do you prefer? The sunrise or the sunset?

I honestly prefer the sunset, just because it gives me this tingling sensation in the back of my head that something wonderful is about to happen... something magical, romantic... It is like a gateway to another beautiful world.

My nights are always special...

My mind is drifting again. I'm off to bed. I sense a really good dream coming on tonight.

Technicolour, surround sound...


Monday, November 10, 2008


I used to be able to say whatever I wanted here, but now I have to speak my mind in word puzzles and metaphors.

This morning's sun was fantastic. It was shining really hard and I had to whip out my shades (finally!) to shield my poor eyes.

So I went to school, got the car fixed (goodbye 70USD...), did my homework, ate some stuff, then in a few minutes I'll be leaving for work at the World Trade Center. I thought the place burned down already, but today's work address says World Trade Center so.... I'm curious to see what kind of place we'll be working in.

So. So. So....... life is rolling on as usual. More than a million people are sitting at their computers typing away like me right now. Where are we all headed? Sometimes it doesn't seem as lonely anymore... :)

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Mom Dynamics and Life

So this morning right before I left for church, I got on Facebook only to see that my mom had left a message on my wall telling me not to put a picture of my in my bikini sitting by the pool as my profile picture.

First reaction: Pissed. This is none of her business! I didn't even want to add any of my family members on Facebook in the first place because of this very reason- I didn't want them commenting on every little thing that I did; especially my mom, since she has a bad opinion on most of my friends and she's pretty mean/blatant about it.

However after a few minutes of fuming, I decided to change the picture anyway. It was a totally uncharacteristic thing for me to do but I did it anyway.

I left for church with a very sour taste in my mouth.

I really don't like it when my mom tries to stick her fingers into little aspects of my life, especially my social life. Every since I was about 10, I've never ever had a single BFF whom she did not hate with a passion. First it was Cassandra, then it was Alexandrine, then it was Nicole, then finally Tanya (whom she still hates with a passion).

And I always ask myself, why? Why is it that she hates all of them? She always says the same thing; that they're a bad influence on me. But what about me? Perhaps I'm a bad influence on them too... no? The thing that gets me the most is the way she treats them.

I think this was a month or so ago, but Tanya and I were at the mall... Some time later, my mom came by. She hadn't seen Tanya in a really long time since Tanya's banned from the house. Tanya obviously wasn't thrilled at all when she found out my mom would be meeting us at the mall, but I told her it should be ok since it had been a long time and my mom had probably gotten over her hatred.

Nope. Wrong again.

When my mom arrived, it was like watching something from the movie Mean Girls. I felt really embarrassed that my mom acted the way she did because... I don't know. I really don't understand her anymore- how she can let a much younger girl get to her so much. I mean, Tanya's mom forgave me a long time ago, even though from her perspective you could say that I led Tanya into a lot of trouble. When I was troubled and crying, Tanya's mom was there to talk to me while my mom was frowning and asking me "what, what do you want to say?".

Sometimes I wonder if it's just because of our culture.

I recently watched this movie about three generations of mothers and their daughters. It made me realise that perhaps it's just a part of Chinese culture- the way mothers act the way they do...... like a far distant cold star shining over their daughters.
Enough of this. My mom is still my mom. I've recently been trying to get used to the whole "obedience" thing but I'll tell you, it's really difficult.

Anyway, I spent this morning looking for mechanics after church but they're all closed for the Sunday. In case you're wondering, the window on the drivers' side of my car got itself unhinged. I can't move it up or down. It's stuck. I looked it up online and apparently it happens to a lot of Honda Civics and Accords. The mechanic will have to open up the door and realign the window or change some mechanism inside.

Tomorrow I have school in the morning, then work at night. No practise at all this week! This week is my week off! I am so relieved you have no idea. I can finally rest and try to get over my incessant flu/cold/fever/cough.

That's all. Overall it has been a pretty decent weekend and I think I like Staten Island a lot better than Bayonne now. The place just feels more... alive. It's cleaner too and the roads are wider. The only thing that sucks is having to pay tolls no matter which direction you go- towards Brooklyn or towards NJ. So much for great locations.

So... Obama got hired for the next four years by the American people. Big change. Whatever. They all tout big change, but really... The biggest change that needs to happen will not happen because everybody's way too comfortable with the way things are. This world is coming to an end and that's my firm belief. Life may not necessarily be in the pits, but I'm certain it's not going to be improving a whole lot.

I'm just enjoying what I can right now and building for the future, no matter how bleak it seems.

Saturday, November 08, 2008


The weather has been horrible, but life has been really good to me!

Things are finally smoothing out and I'm having fun this weekend. I just went to Royal Baths today; supposedly it's the biggest banya in the U.S.A.. I was expecting a lot out of it, but the experience really let me down. There was no cold pool (out of service), the floor plan didn't allow the patrons too much privacy, and worst of all, the hot room wasn't even that hot at all.

But all in all I had a good time.

I've been in Staten Island two days in a row now. I never really knew what kind of place it was until I was there yesterday. It actually looks like a really nice place to live other than parts of Brooklyn. I'm going to find out more about it- maybe moving there isn't a bad idea. It actually reminded me of NE Philly. Quiet... yet happening... yet not happening.

Anyway, my car just spazzed on me. The window on the drivers' side got stuck- I think my window got unhinged. Greattttttt.... It better not rain tonight...

My brain is starting to shut down on me.

Speaking of which, I have a strange dilemma these days.

A lot of things and people are vying for my time now. I have almost entirely forgotten how to handle situations like that ever since I'd been living at the bottom of a well 2 years or so ago. What do I do? I really miss having my girlfriends being within 2 miles near me so I could just go talk to them instead of trying to reach them on the phone (*cough* Tanya *cough*) or online.

My eyes are reaaally shutting down on me...

I hate Blogger for not making it more convenient to load pictures.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Florida Fun

So this may potentially be my longest post ever, but we'll see... I haven't even gotten to the end yet! Simply loading the pictures took me 2 days because I only had a little time in between classes, track, doing homework and church.

I make myself sound so preoccupied, but seriously this has been such a relaxing week compared to the ones before. It's true, with God's peace, you can feel blessed in any circumstance.

Speaking of circumstances; they have been awesome!!! I've paid my last ginormous rent this past weekend because I FOUND A ROOMMATE! She's been quite cooperative and quiet so no complaints yet. Another great thing that happened this weekend was the trip to Disney, Florida for the track meet.

To be honest, I left for Florida with a heavy heart because even though it was an all-expenses paid trip (and they gave us 65USD for pocket money), I simply wasn't looking forward to being around the noisy freshmen 24/7 for 4 straight days. Also, I was stressing out about the championships that we were supposed to run on Saturday. It was the most important meet of the season for us and I really wanted to do well for personal reasons.

Anyway, I'll let the trip speak for itself with pictures (a thousand words each) and my own two cents here and there...

We flew on Thursday afternoon, leaving the cold smelly Jersey air behind.

Below, the black river winked its eyes at me.

By the time the plane arrived in Florida, the sun was already saying its last goodbye.

Our hotel rooms were alright. The beds had cheesy-looking bedsheets but at least they were clean and tick-free.

We took turns hopping into the shower then got dressed before venturing out for dinner.

The girls had already made the place feel more like a dorm room.

Since we didn't have the chartered bus to take us out of the Disney compound for cheaper food, we had to settle for dinner at a restaurant within the resort.

I wasn't too excited waiting for my overpriced food. I was hoping at least that they'd be American-sized portions.

In the meantime our two other tablemates were occupying themselves with Paulina's Iphone.

The place was decorated to look Southern, rustic, and yellow. It made me tired.

Turns out that our food portions were measly Singaporean-sized portions. I ended up paying 42USD for an appetizer, an entree, and a dessert. Even afterwards, I was still very hungry, but I didn't want to order more because I would've spent all my money. As you can see, there aren't any food pictures because I was feeling so ravenous that I gobbled up all my food before you could say "waffles are for playing with, not eating". I think my brain shut down during those few minutes that I was stuffing food into my mouth.

We could've gone out for a romp or two, but I was feeling quite drowsy from the dinner and it was getting late anyway, so we went to sleep. I decided to take the foldable cot, but since the thing was close to breaking, I took the pink mattress off the metal and laid it out on the floor instead.

Then I konked out.

Next morning, my coach decides that it was necessary to wake us up at 0630 to have us eat breakfast at a BUFFET place right BEFORE practice at the race venue afterwards.

At first when I got there, I told myself that I wouldn't eat too much because I didn't want to feel nauseous while running afterwards. However, I just couldn't do it. I couldn't bear the thought of me being at a buffet and not eating as much as I could for 9USD.

So I grabbed a plate. Then another. Then I grabbed four bananas and stuffed them in my shoebag for later. I wanted to grab more but everybody had finished eating already and were getting up to leave. I was quite upset.

This is my coach. We have been driving each other up the wall so far this year.

Louis decided that his knife wasn't clean enough and gave it a few more washings.

After the morning jog on our race venue, we went back to the resort to get changed. The sun was already halfway up and we got to see our surroundings in daylight for the first time.

I'd give it 7 stars out of 10 for serenity.

After a quick shower, we were off to Disney's....

Magic Kingdom! Walking from the entrance of Magic Kingdom to Cinderella's castle would've probably only had us walking about 800m. However, because of the fact that we had three girls with three cameras, the trip there ended up taking approximately 20 minutes instead of the 10 it was supposed to be.

Once we got in, the realities of the magic hit us.

LINES! lines and more LINES!

I revisited a fond friend of mine. The last time I saw Minnie was (I think) back in 1997 in L.A.

Had a tea party in her house for 2 brief seconds.

There were too many children running around. I know I know.. I was once a child like them too, but they are SO annoying!

More waiting.... mostly for Paulina's sake because she was the most excited one of us three, always wanting to take pictures with this, that and everything.

At least we had nice weather. It was slightly chilly but definitely better than the 1 Celsius we had left behind in Jersey.

We went on every single enjoyable ride possible.

We were careful to choose the ones that had a height requirement because that meant that the ride was probably at least a little bit thrilling.

Definitely enjoyed Space Mountain!

It's a small world after all! This was one of the rides that I vividly remember being on in L.A.

We were getting a bit high from the sun and the fun.

Got tired so we took the little train around the park to rest our legs.

Oh yes. we were there on Friday, which was 31st October, Halloween! Almost everybody in Disney that day had a costume on. I had so much fun looking at all the costumes.
For the first half an hour that is.
Then I realised that all the little kids were dressed as either a Disney princess, or a Disney cartoon character. It got boring after a while.

One of the many princesses.

I almost let out a sigh of relief when i saw that this girl wasn't a Cinderella, Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, or Belle (from Beauty and the Beast). Something about her made me think that she should be a Disney character herself.. I like the dress. Very cute.

This was quite funny to watch.

Cinderella no. 1278493.

Of course, we couldn't leave Magic Kingdom without visiting their main people. But you know what stinks?

On Disney advertisements, they always show the characters walking around the park saying hi to the kids. But in reality, they are locked in some little room and you have to wait in line for about 30 minutes to even take a picture with them! It seemed very staged and I missed seeing the characters walking around like they were in Disney L.A..

Since I'd waited a good 30 minutes just to take pictures with these two, I asked them to do an Asian cutting board pose with me.

I didn't want to wait in line to take pictures with Donald without his pants on, so I just snapped a shot of him from the sideline.

So we were almost on the way out from Disney when I see Snow White walking around, and.... THERE WASN'T A LINE AROUND HER! I happily asked if we could take a picture with her, only to find out that she wasn't REALLY Snow White. She was just dressed as Snow White for Halloween that day.


Duped! But seriously, she was SO pretty. I think Disney should just offer her a job.

I didn't take pictures of the rest of the night because I pretty much spent it in bed, having a fever. The sudden drop in temperatures once the sun set sent me ducking under the covers and turning the heat way up in the hotel room. I really thought I was going to die.

Next morning my fever went down, but I felt so drained. Still, I didn't think it would affect me that much for the race.

I had the stamina alright! But my strength had been sapped dry. I felt so weak that I couldn't speed up when I wanted to go faster. I felt so tired, useless, unhappy, miserable and disappointed. I didn't even tell my coach that I had a fever because he would just take it as an excuse on my part for running a horrible race.

Oh well. Things happen. I can only pray that they never happen again.

But once it was time to leave Disney's Wide World of Sports, I felt a whole lot better mentally just knowing that the cross country season had more or less come to an end.

Other teammates were obviously feeling better too.

His job done, our school's trainer could now kick back, relax, and enjoy the rest of his stay at Disney.

Everybody took a million pictures I'm sure. Still waiting for them to go up on Facebook.

It wasn't too sunny but at least it was warmer than the day before.

With the rest of the afternoon to ourselves, we decided to go to Animal Kingdom. It was exciting and all until we had to wait 20 minutes for the stupid bus to arrive.

Tamara just amused herself on the phone.

But finally we got there... whew. At this point I was really tired and still feeling weak, but I told myself that this was Disney anyway and I'd better enjoy the rest of my stay here.

It was on to Dinosaur land first for the rides.

The ride was so lame.

So lame.

So lame but I really enjoyed it!!! And look at Tamara being all freaked out by the dinosaurs. We're on the bottom right of the picture and she's in the yellow shirt.

We went for a second ride and this time I knew where the camera was so I posed. Except that Paulina's arm was in my face.

Such a cheesy looking dinosaur.

Went to Asia for a ride on Everest. It was ok.

Off to Africa where we were held up by some parade.

The characters were enthusiastically waving to the crowd, but nobody in the crowd really waved back. It was strange. Another thing that's really weird for me is the fact that there is an actual person inside that costume. Somehow I can't take the characters seriously because of that. Call it my overactive imagination (or lack thereof), but it just reminds me of Mars Attacks!.

Poor Goofy. You see this poor dude inside is obviously getting sick of his job. Under that mask he is probably frowning and pissed off.

Timon kept scratching himself down there. Was it part of the act? I don't really know.

Obese America: even Donald Duck's belly is feeling the bulge...

So while the girls were busy sifting through the gift shop, I was feeling really tired so I decided to sit outside and wait for them. I was sitting next to a popcorn stand and the popcorn lady kept throwing popcorn to these two birds. It was pretty cute watching them argue.

Later that evening the whole team got dressed up and ready to leave for the MAAC Championships dinner. It was nice to see Brian again (Brian graduated this May).

Louis looking all smart in his getup.

It turned out that before dinner, there was Mass. Oh, and not just any other Mass. It was a Catholic Mass. That's all I have to say, you can tell from my tone what I thought about it.

Oh, the dinner and Mass were held in MGM, or Hollywood Studios as it is known now. They had reserved a whole section and shut down the Rock N Roll coaster especially for our conference. This meant 7 coaster rides in a row for me and 10 for some others.

I actually packed the smallest bag out of the entire team. As a result, I was unprepared for the dinner and had to borrow Paulina's skirt. I wanted to take a picture by myself but Louis and Danny jumped in for ASIAN PICTURE and I thought that was an even better idea.

The boys were all high and giddy from the coaster rides and food.
Eventually, it was time to leave.
But even as most of the team turned in, I wasn't ready to go to bed yet. I mean, come on guys! Now that the meet is over and you have one last night in Disney, you don't want to go to the hot tub???????

Whew at least some people were game to go.
I knew we weren't going to have the opportunity to jump into an outdoors hot tub in Jersey for the rest of winter so I took my time to enjoy it.
Later we all got kicked out because the other drunk college kids were making too much noise.

Then finally, it was back to Dirty Jersey.. Bye bye fairytale land, hello cold stinky reality.

On hindsight, the team wasn't as rowdy as I thought they would be and I actually ended up enjoying the majority of my time there. I would definitely want to return to Disney someday with just a bunch of close friends.

In the meantime, God has been good to me. Very very very very very very good.

I just did my laundry and cooked some Russian борщ. I just had some and I think this is my best one ever!

Goodbye. I guess this wasn't my longest post ever because I started out with a lot of things on my mind, but right now my mind is quite empty along with my stomach (which itself has a lot of things on its mind... if it has a mind at all... which I think it does...)