— Cue Goldengrove v2 —
Is this what freedom feels like?
It’s the end of the second week of Semester 2 as I’m typing at the moment (05.08.2017, 13:54), and I’m still in the midst of watching parts of me and people around me fall into place for this new semester. I could liken this process to a game of Tetris — cautious, hesitant, but progressing nonetheless.
Timestamp of this very moment:
“Somehow you’ll escape
all that waiting and staying.
You’ll find the bright places
where Boom Bands are playing.”
I’ve got a room that I have every reason to be thankful for this semester, and I still pinch myself whenever I wake up to a world where the ceiling is high, the floorspace is generous, and the air is still and tinged with lavender and lemongrass. I’d turn my head to the left and I’d see purple, like an amethyst crystal, only more magnificent and alive as it transitions from lilac to violet, violet to salmon-pink, salmon-pink to yellow, and yellow to the grand finale: a blinding, empyrean white as the sun’s rays fully stretch across the heavens to tell us she has fully risen.
You know, things are great at the moment, but have You heard of ‘nostalgic preferences’? It is a belief or perception that our past experiences are better than the same kinds of experiences we have today.
‘But was the past really better, or is this perception a trick that our minds play on us? New research at Carnegie Mellon University finds that the workings of memory seem to filter our view of the past with rose-colored glasses, biasing what we remember in ways that profoundly impact how we evaluate the past in comparison to the present.’
I have a strong inkling that it’s exactly this ‘nostalgic preferences’ that’s been directing my dreaming patterns — You know, that funny part of the night when our brain shows us what we’ve been yearning for/ worried about, or is simply random (and incomprehensible), depicting a scene of a lush meadow filled with hopping quokkas — towards reliving the recent past back home. It was sweet, simple, and… like pearls slipping off a string.
“After all,” Anne had said to Marilla once, “I believe the nicest and sweetest days are not those on which anything very splendid or wonderful or exciting happens but just those that bring simple little pleasures, following one another softly, like pearls slipping off a string.”
― L. M. Montgomery,
“We are all a little weird and life’s a little weird, and when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall in mutual weirdness and call it love.”
Platonic love, romantic love, familial love, self-love, love love.
On the very last day in Melbourne, Ormond requested for all of us to move out by 11am, so I dutifully did, at 10.59am (haha), with the help of the ever-kind Taku who helped me lug one of the two large bags I intended to leave in one of Ormond’s trunk rooms (thank You, Taku, You were my hero that morning – I guess Your name ‘TakuHIRO’ is pretty fitting). It wasn’t long before I was en route to the airport, with the sun in my face, my heart beating excitedly in my chest, and my passport loosely held in my hands. I was at peace with the way everything concluded this semester. I was warm and thankful.
All good things come to an end, unfortunately.
All bad things come to an end, fortunately.
Hello :’) The hiatus that I took from blogging the last half of the first semester was unfortunately required of me because 1) I was getting really really busy :'( and 2) I was very bothered by the fact that I couldn’t produce quality posts as I’d otherwise like to because of the little time I had on my hands. I did spend quite a while adapting to life in Melbourne (about 1-2 months to be exact… because boy is Melbourne anything but like Munich), but I think I’ve now gotten into the swing of things, and I’m hoping hiatuses will cease to become necessary in the next semester.
Heaps has happened, my friend. Heaps. (Sorry this is going to be an extremely loooong post!) And it all went by in a whiz. A whiz!
< Vlog embedded all the way below! >
“Mama, what will You be up to over Easter?”
“Flying to Bali to spend some time with Kakek and Nenek*… Would You like to come with?”
“My goodness yes please… but don’t tell them I’m coming! Let’s surprise them!”
… and so I did, arriving mid-day on the 15th.
*‘Kakek and Nenek’ is Indonesian for ‘Granddad and Grandma’.
Bali holds a very special place in my heart — for those who’ve been here with me since the start, You might remember that it was the Bali trip from June 2015 (Pt. (1), (2), (3), (4)) that started my blogging ball rolling. That trip was life-changing in ways I can’t quite accurately use words to express — awakening, empowering, inspiring, holistic, calming, therapeutic, …
‘It must have been the Bali Charm. There’s just something about this place – something undeniably special. Love and positive energy abound.‘ — Me, June 2015
I’m in the middle of Easter Break as I piece this post together, and it feels extra special because it is a collection of all the good times, and the good, great, glowing times only. I realised that when I shut out the bad, there really is so much to appreciate. // I realised that when I intentionally and purposefully subtracted, I added value to my life. What a beautiful binary, a stellar symbiosis, …
It’s an unsettling feeling knowing that any ounce of negativity I ever harboured had drowned out such stunning memories, that every time I numbed myself… I effectively shielded myself from the golden moments that were right in front of my nose. Oh how devastatingly effortless it is to forget to stop and smell the flowers, to listen to the songs the birds sing for us, to just have tea and watch the sunset.
“There are only two days in the year that nothing can be done.
One is called ‘yesterday’ and the other is called ‘tomorrow’, so ‘today’ is the right day to love, believe, do, and mostly live.”
— Dalai Lama
“Put my head under my pillow,
and let the quiet put things where they are supposed to be.”
― Stephen Chbosky,
It’s been so difficult putting all of this into words. I seem to be able to shape my love for every this and every that — the most beautiful, arbitrary things — effortlessly, lovingly, speedily into alphabets, but when it comes to the disharmony in my thoughts, it is nothing but either an epitome of a pathetic mess or a sad incompletion… I could never seem to make sense of the disharmony — what exactly is it? why exactly does it exist? what does/ will it entail? — but more than that, I could never find the courage to let anyone in on the reality of how… apologetically broken I am.