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I decided that I should not post anymore public entries. He really doesn't like it. I know he tries to make little jokes about this blog but I see it in his eyes. I see so many things that sometimes, I want to look away and just picture the happyness, no ifs and no buts. My little Narnia Through The Looking Glass. Female intuition is a powerful thing but it can also cripple you if you take it too seriously. Really, some things are better left unsaid.

Tonight, I was being morose. No idea why because I am happy with the way life is going in general. My schedule is packed and I am too exhausted most nights to pander to my neurotic mind. But tonight, tonight, the inner demons came out to play. I still clearly remember that dream where I was choked up and all you did was say you had to go. Watching as you walked into the immigration area, looking back at me for the last time. It was a dream but why did it seem so real?

I am prepared for that day when you leave me behind, to seek new environs, to live your life the way you want to. What I cannot prepare myself for is how I will have to live with the ghosts that surround me. The places that we visited together, they will be here, everyday, mocking me. You, you will be somewhere new and exciting, discovering with anticipation, everything and anything you want.

Karma. I suppose having done that to someone before, I should have expected to be on the receiving end some day. I just have to remember that you were meant to be here for only a season and I'll be ok.

I'm still here, but barely


My absence from this blog recently has been for a variety of reasons, most of which I am dying to type out with a vengeance but am unable to do so. One major reason being that Will has found this blog through sheer hard work. I mentioned its existence a while ago but told him I would let him know about it at an appropriate time, when I felt more secure in our relationship perhaps. But who was I kidding? If I were him, I'd do exactly the same, which was to go on google and livejournal, trying to search for my blog. I wonder what sort of keywords he used in his search! That would certainly amuse me to no end. 

So in the end, he found it and read it all. There aren't many entries so far but enough fodder for thought I should think. I am not going to reveal what he said to me after but suffice to say, he's not too happy about me 'exposing' our life on such a public forum. Naturally, my entries are not a perfectly rounded view of my relationship with him, bearing in mind that these are my thoughts, my slanted account of what has happened. I even toyed with the idea of asking him to contribute some entries because it would be highly interesting and tragically comedic to see the contrasting viewpoints we have on virtually anything and everything. (Yes, they are Geckos not Lizards; Singaporeans are not that unhelpful, just brusque in manner; I said I was upset, which doesn't necessarily mean angry; oh whatever!). 

For a person who is private in nature, Will has suffered a lot of intrusion into his private space recently so I can empathise with his adverse reaction to this blog. One question I need to ask my readers is if I have portrayed him in a negative manner? In a way where you would see him as a fool or a callous jerk? What is your opinion of him, of me and of our relationship based solely on what I have written so far? I am interested in what you have to say. All comments will be screened and you can let me know if you want it to be published or not. 

I am contemplating if I should continue writing here and your feedback would help immensely. Don't get me wrong, I will never stop writing, whether it be on LJ, in a hardcover diary or just on random scraps of paper that I later char with my lighter, delighting as I see the sooty edges curling and then crumbling into obscurity. It's just the way I cope with my life, the one where hardly anyone sees.

The best gift of all

I remember the first gift ever given to me by someone I was dating was this box of little paper hearts folded from bus tickets. This was more than 10 years ago when we were such shy and proud students, on the way home in a public bus after a group outing. Sitting at the back row, legs curled up against the back of the seat in front, listening some insipid chinese love song on the dictionary sized discman. He wouldn't even admit that it was a present of sorts, insisting that he had made them because he was bored, didn't know what to do with them and so I should take them anyway. Boys!

Lucky for me, things improved in the gifting department. Most I can't remember due to my sieve-like memory, which often makes me question if I remembered to have lunch, but some are particularly memorable, naturally not always for the right reasons. There were pieces of jewellery encased in robin blue boxes of course, always books (for the geek in me), lazy weekends away in various poshy hotels, posies and bouquets of the sweetest blooms, even mobile phones that I was lusting after but could never pay for. Never shoes though because at heart I am still somewhat traditional and believe that giving a person shoes gives them a reason to walk away from you.

As a record for my muddled head and just to make you all jealous because it shows what a thoughtful gift giver Will is, I'm going to list down all the things he's ever given me. In non-chronological order because my head doesn't work that way, he has gifted me a book called Why Men Fall Asleep After Sex, not sure if this was more for my benefit or his; a carved and painted tealight holder in my favourite colours; a gorgeous pair of heels from a European chain store's designer collaboration which I ended up paying him for because of aforementioned superstitious beliefs; a make-up palette from my favourite brand which suits me perfectly to make up for the previous non-present; 2 sets of incredibly sexy lingerie which we chose together, making it ahem... a double present; and of course the panty rose. No stuffed toys, thank goodness because I have an almost unexplainable distaste for the majority of them. I think they belong in a Marilyn Manson video. The only one I have ever felt the urge to own is the little plush white tiger at the zoo shop, for the reason that it would always remind me of the amazing time we had there and how majestic the white tigers were.

So yes, Will has been the perfect gift giver so far. Giving me gifts because he thought it was suited for me, not because he had to get me something for Christmas, Valentine's Day, my birthday or some other day where he was obliged to. They have never been particularly expensive or extravagant, more often than not getting the desired reaction from me. I thank my lucky stars that I don't have to look up at the skies in askance like those people who receive toasters and lawnmowers. And of course, I am thankful for the best gift of all, you.

There's nothing like a good ole outdoor Aussie festival with stubbies in hand, your best surfie attire, the ubiquitous rubber thongs and dare I say it, the sweet smell of grass. Aromatic smells from the barbie permeate the air and everyone's chilled out. I remember once such festival on the shores of St. Kilda beach during a cool summer's evening, where I was particularly stoked because my favouritest Melbourne band was playing live, and for free at that. I may not be a staunch supporter of Victorian Premier Steve Bracks (a rant on this some other time), but if we got to party like this under the Labor government, then how bad could they be?

With fond memories like this, I was thoroughly excited when Will reminded me that the Good Vibrations Festival was in town. Naturally, I asked him to join me but he seemed to prefer going with his friend! So what's a girl to do but go through her phone list and scrabble around for anyone who was willing to accompany me at such short notice. As luck would have it, I managed to gather a band of like minded revelers who were keen despite the dismal weather. Kudos to my galpal who suggested I wear my bathers under my clothes in case it got soaking wet. Alternatively, I could take off my top if it got too hot and not be utterly embarrassed. Perfect opportunity for me to break out my sparkly gold Bond girl-worthy pair of bathers that I'd been hiding in the darkest corner of my wardrobe. How's that for a brilliant idea!

Buzzing with anticipation, I headed down early on my own. Even from the entrance, the electric vibe was almost tangible and I squealed to myself like the little child I am inside. Headed straight for the alco queue (but of course), where I had an excellent view of the stage. Needless to say, I was already pink with the glow of booze-induced happiness by the time my friends arrived. Funnily enough, Will turned up sans friend... which didn't matter at that point because it was time for more fizzy golden liquid delirium.

A short diversion to talk about my ex boyfriends again. I am loathe to admit that I have never been to a single concert, play, musical or performance of any sort that we mutually enjoyed. One was a very mandarin speaking type who would have had a ball at the recent 'Rain Is Coming' tour; another was a devoted NineInchNailsNirvanaMetallicaGNR fan who was most comfortable head banging and bodysurfing in a mosh pit; while the most recent ex could  never let go of his inhibitions enough to enjoy anything, period. Imagine me at trying to get down and dirty with someone who just.won't.move - 'Nuff said.

So it was with a curious attitude and a pinch of hesitation that I introduced Will to my friends, not knowing if I had to babysit him all night or if he would desert me the moment he saw anyone else he knew. Turns out I had no reason to fret because it ended up being a truly awesome night out. We drank and smoked, chatted and laughed, danced and clapped, held each other close, enveloped by the thumping beats and laser lights. Merci beaucoup for such a wonderful night, for being part of an unforgettable experience and most of all, for just being you.

* Please click on the link for the festival website and not go typing www.goodvibrations.com in your web browser because it will lead you to a website that is ahem... unsuitable for under 18s.

Happy Valentine's Day to me

Happy Valentine's Day world!

Wasn't so happy for me this year. I did not spend it with anyone special and wasted a lot of time waiting for cabs. Should have taken the car I tell ya...

I'd been asking Will about flowers for a while. Not requesting them per se, but wondering why I hadn't received any. Was he just not the flower giving kind? Did he think he could spend his money in better ways? Was I just not special enough to be given flowers? I had no idea and his only reply was that the flowers had to come from him and him alone and that I shouldn't ask for them. Fair enough, so I just shrugged ambivalently and left it.

2 weeks before Valentine's Day and what would have been a monthly anniversary, not that we celebrated it, he mentioned that he could probably do something nice in the way of those elusive blooms. I definitely appreciated the thought but the monologue in my head went something like,

 "Don't expect anything you silly litchi. If you do, you'll probably end up with some hideous trick condom rose or something of that sort."

So Valentine's Day came and went. I sent Will a card which I really liked because it adds on to this series of cards which I had given him previously (remind me to include a picture here in future, they're kitschy-funny-cute). No acknowledgment from him whatsoever, which leaves me wondering again, unless the postie has gone loco and decided to keep the card for his own mantelpiece?

Late last night, after a joyride to the land of our friendly neighbours up north, I met Will briefly to hand a document to him. When arranging where to meet, he told me that he had a present for me and was not sure if I'd like or accept it. Naturally, my interest was piqued and I admit that for a fleeting moment, a thought bubble filled with vibrant stalks of peonies, hydrangeas and baby's breath wafted across me. However, I know Will well enough to know that something was up. He is an illustrious alumni of ENAC, a French engineering school in Toulouse that awards degrees in toilet humour, evident through their yearly student film ASSO productions, where they spoof East 17, Hotel California and a Bratislava pop group, complete with sock over dick routines. Can you see where I am going with this?

So at the appointed (witching) hour, I meet Will and hand over the documents. He grins rather bashfully and hesitates before taking out his little surprise, which turns out to be a red rose. At least that's what my astigmatism afflicted eyes see initially in the orange glow of the dim street lights. It's not real however, and this is when I start to worry a little. Look closer he urges and I do... only to realise that he has in fact given me a red panty disguised as a rose. The toothy grin on my face widens in semi shock and I am not sure whether to laugh or cry. On one hand, I think he could just be trying to cheer me up as he knew I had a bad day. Another part of me feels like I've been insulted through and through. Not knowing what else to do, I assure him that I will bring it home, and that yes it's OKAY, idiotic grin still plastered on my face. He can't stop laughing at my reaction.

Lying on my bed while later, I suddenly burst out in laughter. Admittedly, it's rather hilarious. I did get my flower after all!

Feb. 9th, 2007

Being acquainted with a new language or country, there is a natural tendency to pick up the local patois along with nuances in physical behaviour. Will has adapted quite well in this respect, expressing his disbelief with an emphatic "Wah lau!" when say, he sees a long queue at the supermarket. He sometimes tacks on the ubiquitous "lah" at the end of a sentence for further emphasis too. All this said with a faint French accent which amuses me to no end.

Having lived in the Land Down Under for almost 5 years, some of the native slang has slowly worked its way into my vocabulary and I puzzle him occasionally when I use words like " brekkie", "wog" and "arvo" *. We had a little online chat the other day concerning this topic which ended up in bales of laughter with both trying to guess the meanings of Aussie and French slang. I particularly like the French nickname for the English - rosbif! Apparently, what gave rise to this amusing reference is the British tendency to invade French beaches during summer and bake themselves silly until they turn a lurid shade of pinkish red, resembling a stodgy block of roast beef. When it came to "bougnoules" and "rital" I was a bit hesitant because they are somewhat derogatory! I think they refer to the Arab immigrants and Italians respectively. And to think Will was insulted by the racism he seems to experience here. Seems like the French are even more racist...pfffft

* brekkie = breakfast
   wog = generally refers to young men of Greek, Italian, Turkish or Lebanese who dress and talk a
               certain way.
   arvo = afternoon

Not racism my dear

Recently, I spotted Will's new portable hard drive, sleek and blue (his current colour of choice) and inwardly fumed for being ripped off while shopping for my own just weeks before his purchase.

Will - 120 GB, $180, small and flat
Me - 60 GB, $160, bigger and fatter


So I e-mailed him and sought his assistance, asking him to go with me this weekend to get a new set as I wanted one with password protection or fingerprint recognition. Being the stoo-burn (Will-speak for stubborn) mule he is, he refused point blank, citing this reason - I told you before how I feel about Sim Lim. I go there only when I really need ... I hate this place. People there are even more racist than elsewhere.

Let's be objective here, Sim Lim Square, the temple at which local IT geeks worship, is not the sort of place you go for a relaxing weekend jaunt. The multitude of fluorescent lights are designed to render you temporarily dumb, long enough for the abrasive salesmen to make their practised pitch for whatever they are selling and for you to hand over your platinum card for the latest thingamajig. Only the strongest survive here. Foreigners or locals, no one is spared. The former probably experiencing a little more persuasion than necessary but racist?

I want Will to understand that how most of the locals here treat him is not racist. In fact, most of the time, I feel I receive better treatment simply because he's with me. It helps of course that he is extremely polite and considerate to everyone, he has an unassuming air and please allow me this - he is pretty damn gorgeous.

My neighbourhood dessert stall auntie* was so tickled by his efforts to order in the local dialect that she gave us extras for free. Most cab drivers say a very enthusiastic thank you to him at the end of the journey. Most salespeople greet him when he enters a store. In many other cultures, this can be taken for granted but it's the norm here to complete daily transactions at the supermarket and petrol station with nary a word exchanged. It's ok if the service personnel does not greet you. It's not personal. If he has a special request that is refused, he takes it as racism when it is in fact poor staff training. Service staff here are not taught to have initiative or diplomacy. I don't think he understands this.

Another reason for the apparent racism he faces is xenophobia. Many locals have not been sufficiently exposed to western thoughts and concepts. They may watch MTV, drink coca cola and travel a fair bit but that does not instantly make them feel comfortable with foreigners. Fear of the unknown causes them to act warily while they observe and process. They have seen too many expats come and disrespect local women. They don't understand the openness of western cultures and are very often scandalised by concepts like pre-marital cohabitation.  That is not to say he doesn't have grounds for feeling like he has been treated with racism at times. It is an unfortunate handicap that afflicts many people the world over. I just want him to see things for what they are.

* we call our elders 'uncle' and 'auntie' as a form of respect

Adventures on the moto

My previous boyfriends were mainly car enthusiasts so I've been used to cruising in fast flashy cars, turbo timers, mufflers, drifting and the like. Finding out that sweet, quiet and unassuming Will was actually a daredevil motorbike rider complete with Alpinestars boots and Shark helmet, was a bit of a shock to me. It wasn't until a close friend whose boyfriend also rode bikes, remarked that it must be fun to go on wild rides as a pillion that I thought, " Hey, I guess it's quite sexy after all", after which I had wanton visions of me being the ultimate biker chick dressed in supple leather pants and spike heeled boots perched behind him, my luscious mane swept by the midnight breeze. I jest of course but we had some fun on the bike didn't we baby?

My first time, I was pretty hesitant as I had not been on a bike in my entire adult life, much less a 600cc ride which looked a little fiercer than the everyday scooters you see spluttering down the roads. I told him to be gentle with me and take it slow as it was my first time. Being the sweet and considerate person he is, he was sure I was suitably covered and protected with a long sleeved jacket, jeans and covered shoes... (ban those filthy thoughts from your minds children) before we set off on our little adventure.

It was a quiet evening, which I was grateful for as it meant less inconsiderate drivers on the road trying to run us over with their sparkling new Lexus sedans and BMW four wheel drives. Will should appreciate my reference to Lexus drivers here *wink*. He brought us on a stretch of highway, passing familiar landmarks which took on a different look from this shiny new perspective. We ended up riding along a bridge having a beautiful view of the city skyline and when we thought it could not get more romantic than this, crimson hued fireworks burst in the nightsky, seemingly out of nowhere, right above us. I squeezed his waist in exhilaration and marveled at the serendipity of it all.

Sometime into the relationship, I got to know the group of fellow bike enthusiasts that Will meets up with semi-regularly for chit chat sessions at insalubrious coffee shops and random group rides across the causeway (our closest neighbouring country, Malaysia, is a quick drive along an over water bridge link known to locals as "the causeway"). After pining for him one too many times while he was on a joyride with the bikers, I decided to dust off my brave jacket, put it on and join them for a little fun. Fortunately for me, there were other similarly enthusiastic girlfriends/wives in tow so I didn't feel left out at all. The journey to our destination was uneventful. Approximately half an hour to clear customs and another three quarters of an hour to find the dodgy open air cafe where we had stomach churning greasy chow, tea and coffee topped with a smattering of miscellaneous native bugs for that authentic local flavour.

The fun part comes on the way back, while going over the speed limit on a darkened stretch of highway, rocks strewn by the side, large container trucks as company. One of the convoy suddenly surges forward and leaves us in his trail. Before I know it, Will bends forward, with a kick of his heel revs his ride into high gear and everything around me becomes this vibrating mess, the colour of each object bleeding into the next. My eyes dart around in askance and I finally figure out how to react when I see another pillion bend forward in a semi-crouching position. Doing this, I feel like my head could remain safely attached to the other parts of my body when I previously foresaw it being torn off my neck and left behind as rubble. Naturally, when we stopped at the petrol station for some drinks and to top up the gas tanks, I said nothing to Will. Just chatted amiably with the others and then went home without much ado. I mentioned my experience to Will weeks later and expressed the momentary shock I felt when he just took off without prior warning. I laughed a little at the memory but what I really wanted to say to him was, " Oh .My .God, don't EVER do something like that again without TELLING ME FIRST!"

House guest from Down Under

As mentioned in my previous post, Will had some company over the last week, the most entertaining one being a good friend/colleague of his who is based in the land Down Under. Antoine is one of those well built, charming blokes with dirty blonde curls and a devilish smile that has made him extremely popular with the sheilas along Sydney's south eastern shores. Having met him twice before before but only at noisy social settings, I was unsure of how we would get along this time because he was going to be staying over at Will's place over the weekend, which I shamefacedly admit to being my sort of second home (I don't technically live there but I spend a lot of time there and my stuff is all over the place, you know how it is).

It turned out well enough in the end. He was very kind and spoke to me in his mildly Aussie accented English, which I appreciated tremendously. He was chatty and had strong opinions about women, films, work,  which made for interesting conversation but was never over bearing. The most important thing was that he was on expenses so we had free cab rides! free meals! free drinks! Come back again anytime! Alright, you know I'm kidding. I am taking his offer of bringing over Krispy Kreme donuts and Havaiana thongs the next time he stops by very seriously though. Do not mess with a woman and her sugary cravings.

On Saturday evening, we traipsed to Little India for some vindalootikkamasalaraitachutney on a banana leaf at The Banana Leaf. Little did we know that there is not only one, not two but three similarly named restaurants in the vicinity. Originality much? Naturally, we went to the two "wrong" ones before walking to an entirely different street and finding the friends we were supposed to meet at The Banana Leaf hidden in a dodgy little arcade, which turned out to be barely satisfactory, which turned out to be more expensive than expected. Ah well, such is life and don't you tell me any different.

Apres dinner, we headed on to Mustafa Center, our local 24 hour-anything you want you can find here-mall, the equivalent of Kmart and Target maybe? Except a little dodgier of course. Will and Antoine did some shopping, Will's significant buy being lizard traps so that he can finally have his walls free from crusty dots of excrement, especially the disgustingly runny looking one found the same day (did Mr Lizard have curry for dinner too?). By the way, are those pale putty coloured ones that you find in houses lizards or geckos? We have not come to a unanimous conclusion on this issue despite referencing numerous sources.

To finish off the weekend, I insisted on teaching them mahjong, the little gambling fiend that I am, being Asian and all. They didn't look particularly impressed because the set up is admittedly boring. After a few false starts though, they were suitably entrenched in the game and proceeded to 'pong' and 'gong' with gusto. In fact they were winning without any help from me whatsoever! I muttered something about them using their unfairly advanced engineering background under my breath and proceeded to distract my worthy opponents by teaching them to curse in Cantonese, a very appropriate Chinese dialect to use while playing this game. It was highly amusing to see them puffing on the shisha pipe that Will brought back from Dubai, playing this traditional Asian game and speaking in French. The world has grown smaller in this age of cross cultural globalization and I'm happier for it. Most of all because it brought Will to me.

I've got a headache honey...

Last week, Will's company had their annual kick off seminar in this exotic tropical isle I call home. As a result, all zee tres adorable Frenchmen descended upon the mystical far far away spot of paradise that is accessible by taxi, bus or cable car, if you so wish to savour the mesmerizing sights of our bustling seaport... Sure, they took part in some team building activities on the pristine white powdery sands of Siloso Beach and learned a lot about the cultural aspects of doing business in Asia through slide show presentations and talks but the real point of the retreat was to inbibe gallons of beer in a bid to buddy up with their counterparts from other parts of the world. Now that's where the real team building is and I dare say no one will disagree.

In a MNC like this, you would naturally have employees of every race and nationality. There was a small contingent of Singaporeans, a delightful Swedish woman, a dashing James Bondesque Briton and a few others I never met but by and large, the majority of the seminar participants and their plus ones were French nationals, which always spells disaster for me because I understand enough to grasp the topic of conversation, and yet am unable to contribute. Rather, by the time I formulate a reply, albeit with horrible grammar, the conversation has since switched to something completely unrelated and I am left looking like a vapid blonde whose only thoughts are where to get my highlights done. Who am I though to deprive my precious Will of his opportunity to speak in his native tongue and natter away with people he actually relates to.

Before and after the seminar, he had friends staying over so I was in the company of Frenchies for a whole week. At the end of it all my two brain cells were so overworked trying to translate everything I heard that when we finally had time alone and he wanted to spend some quality time with me, all I could say was, "I've got a headache honey..."