Travels for the year 2013!

2013 saw me travelling quite a fair bit. Bali, Melbourne, Sydney, Cambodia  Penang, Yogyakarta and then concluding the year with Sri Lanka. My highlight, of course, will be overcoming my inhibitions and attempting my first solo travel to Yogyakarta, Indonesia. Although, it was a short 4D3N, the trip taught me a lot on solo travelling.

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Sunset at Seminyak beach, Bali

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Post lunch smiles, Bali

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Kuta Beach, Bali

Bali, May 2013: A 3-night getaway with a couple of friends. Beach, sunset and laughter over cocktails. Got ourselves inked only for it to last not more than an hour. Also, my slippers that almost sailed away in the waters while at Tanah Lot. Oh, the fun times.

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Mt Buller Ski Resort, Melbourne

Melbourne, June 2013: A week of adventures with the sister. Tried out skiing for the first time. Amidst all the crashings and butt-aches was a memorable stay at Mt Buller. Watched 3 movies over the span of a week I was there. Felt like a local rather than a tourist. No surprises there, given my frequency in visiting Australia. Myriad of asian cuisine range conquered: Indian, Chinese, Vietnamese and Japanese. Survived -10 degrees for 30 minutes in Chill On Bar. Relived bits of our childhood watching Circus Oz.

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Sydney Harbour Bridgeclimb: Check!

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Skydiving: CHECK!!

Sydney, August 2013: Sole purpose of this last minute travel was to conquer the Harbour Bridge Climb. Ended up, I conquered one of my biggest fears as well – tandem skydiving! At times, I still cannot digest the fact I went through with this decision. Plus given the fact I was alone, I must be quite brave I think. After all that adrenaline rush, spent the next 2 days in Manly just chilling. Manly is such a perfect beach town, you can just wake up, stumble into a coffee house and laze the day away, without feeling any tinge of guilt. Most spontaneous travel decision ever. And also, by far, my most favourite trip to Sydney.

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Ice ball making in process, Penang.

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Roadside chendol, Penang

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Street vendor selling banana pancakes, Penang

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Dim sum buffet for breakfast, Penang

Penang, October 2013: Nothing but a 3 day galore of food, food and more food. And I mean, GALORE. I’m sure my pictures are a testament to it.

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Borobudur, Yogyakarta

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Borobudur, Yogyakarta

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Borobudur, Yogyakarta

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The stranger who literally saved my life, Yogyakarta

Yogyakarta, November 2013: Highlight #1: My first (real) solo travel. Highlight #2: Catching sunrise at Borobudur which costed me nearly SGD 100. Was definitely worth it though. I won’t forget how I was almost stranded on Parangtritis Beach, 5 hours before my flight. The stranger (pictured above) showed me what kindness truly is and brought me back home for a nominal amount.

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Background of Sigiriya Rock from Hotel Sigiriya, Sri Lanka

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Scenic boat ride, Sri Lanka

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Footsteps in the ancient city of Polonnaruwa, Sri Lanka

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Chaaya Blu Trincomalee, Sri Lanka

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The Golden Temple of Dambulla, Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka, December 2013: 10 days, 10 pax, clocked 1800km on the road. Truckloads of memories. Nothing beats the euphoria of scaling Sigiriya Rock (Lion’s Rock) despite the bad weather condition as we started our ascend. Waking up in Kandy at 6am to a full moon amidst the mist. Watching sunset at Galle. Will be doing up a full post on Sri Lanka very soon.

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Amidst all my travelling, I juggled a new job that has taught me so many things I love and hate about the real world. Obviously more hate, than love. But anyways.

Also, I decided to give accounting a shot and enrolled myself in ACCA. Have completed 3 papers till date.

Got myself a basic rock climbing certification.

Did a couple of runs. Conquered my first 10km at Sundown.

2013 has been by far the toughest year to get by. I’m glad I’m still surviving and standing strong. I recall that fateful span of 3 days in July where I lost 2 very dear people. There are days I just wanna crumble and disappear out of this world. The void is so indescribable that I have quit writing. But, there are other days I wanna live to make you’ll proud. Those days help me get by.

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I will live to make you proud.

I’m planning to march in to 2014 without any expectations whatsoever. I’m gonna quit wishing for things to happen and take things as they come along.

Keep writing your goals for the year ahead and, if necessary, re-write them as you go along. After all, we have got another year to get it right. Have a blessed year ahead folks!

Till we meet again,

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Writing to heal?

I wonder if writing ever makes you heal faster. The feelings etched beneath your skin get inked on paper in the attempt of getting it off your chest.

Writing forces you to remember all the memories that flow in, like as if the floodgates have just been opened.

Writing makes you compartmentalise the happy memories from the sad and bitter ones. It gives you the option, or rather liberty, to either focus on the good or the bad.

Writing makes the first kiss all the more real as if the taste of it still lingers on your fingertips.

It makes you remember the time your heart skipped a beat as if it were running with the aid of a pacemaker and he was the master.

Everyone writes lyrically about the beauty of love when in love. After all, they say “at the touch of love, everyone becomes a poet.” But when love turns painful, one tries to disguise it.

So beneath these naked words, lie painful memories that torment like a demon.

What 2012 was all about!

In no particular order.

– I quit a job I hated dragging my feet to every morning!
– Did a studio photoshoot with my friends!
– Attended Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way” Concert!
– Celebrated my birthday in Hong Kong!
– Celebrated another good friend’s in KL!
– Penang with my siblings. Memories include a dodgy motel/hostel/whatever and me writhing in pain and discomfort after taking a gamble on a suspicious looking massage parlour. Also, playing arcade games on the last day like a 5 year old kid.
– Let love in and decided to let it go.
– Many sober and happy nights! And many drunk ones as well!
– Carousel for my 24th!
– Discovered so many awesome food haunts!
– Midnight brunch @ Wild Honey and champagne for the first time!
– Attended so many funerals.
– Spent over RM800 on seafood for 13 pax!
– 18-day roadtrip in Australia with my siblings! #besttimeofmylife 
– Almost died behind the wheels. 
– 1 weekend madness in Gold Coast which involved a family photoshoot! #awesome
– Travel highlight #1: Brighton bathing box, Melbourne!
– Felt really old when I voluntarily decided to go for a full body medical examination.
– Almost got cheated of SGD 550.
– My cousin got married!!
– Executed the best birthday surprise ever by flying in to meet my sister! (don’t think I can ever top this surprise off)
– Bangkok for 4 days and I swear I’ve never walked this much in my life before!
– Decided to give public blogging a shot! Thank you all for your support to Solosingaporean thus far! I’m always eternally grateful to one and all!
– Fell in love with Japanese food!
– Won free passes for couple of movies! Thanks to radio 91.3FM!
– Universal Studios Singapore thrice this year alone! I’m officially sick of it!
– Attended the worse concert of my life thus far. Poor audio, poor singers. Oh my!
– Shreya Goshal live!
– Worked for SGD 8 per hour and also scored SGD 80 without doing anything!
– Best buys of the year: My polaroid and Ipad! 
– Top movie: Tie between Stricken and Perks of Being a Wallflower!
– After 4 months of being unemployed, I’m starting my new job tomorrow! Wish me luck!
 
Happy new year folks! Screw the mayans, we’ve got 1 more year to get it right! Let’s get started! So, bring it on, 2013!
 

Love.

Have you ever loved someone so deeply that it hurts you? It made, or rather, makes you a better person but still, it consumes you. It’s like a leech feeding off your soul. Like a parasite. All you think about as you get by the day are your shared memories. Memories of all the conversations you’ve had. The tears and the joy shared. You know you’ve to let go and quit being there for everyone else. It’s time you started taking care of yourself. But, how do you do that? How do you let someone go? Especially when they are the reason you breathe easy. Cutting them off is like suffocating yourself with a cloth in the mouth. Mind you, there is already a dagger piercing the heart.

Cut me off. I quit. 

Wishful thinking.

Do you wake up every morning hoping to have a clean slate to begin your day? That all mistakes, grudges, failures aren’t kept tabs on and judged. It’s like your count for the day begins with zero and not negative or even positive. So, the day is totally in your control to make or break. Your past has no bearing on your present. Negativity doesn’t hold you back from achieving what you want to do about the next 24 hours you have at hand. You truly live by the day taking one step at a time instead of being overwhelmed by the rest of the years ahead of you.

I do. I wish I had Alzheimer’s. The kind that forgets the bad stuff and retains only the good. Only the happy memories. Indeed, wishful thinking on my part.