Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Back from a Sabbatical

I got lazy to blog. Or perhaps I just ran out of things to say. Or maybe my life was too boring that I had nothing to blog about. Anyway the deteriorating of my command for the English language demands the survival of my blog. I am simply disgusted with my inability to come up with any decent sentences anymore, and I thought my English was not very good last time. In retrospect, it was quite satisfactory. Will I perhaps find in retrospect in the future, that my English used in this post is quite satisfactory too?

Reading through my previous blog posts, I felt that I was quite poetic, a few years ago. I forgot too, how much I love word play. These days, I never have the flow of English language I used to have. I wonder where it has disappeared too. Did it disappear together with my past when I abandoned my life in Malaysia and decided to start anew in Singapore? If so, I shall sincerely apologise for discarding what I used to have. Can you please please please come back, my love for the language?

Another reason could be because I was experiencing an emotional roller coster then. People often say that poets are very emotional, and they write best when they're upset, or drunk. That is true to me too. I used to write best when I was upset. Of course, I did not deliberately upset myself just to write better. Now, life is peaceful. So maybe the spark lighted for the one last time before the roller coaster retired, never to rekindle.

The other reason I can think of is my perfectionism. It has been bugging me a lot lately. I noticed ever since I came to Singapore, or at least, ever since I scored ok for my exams, I have been waiting for the perfect idea to come every time I write an essay. I will wait for the perfect idea, I will wait for the perfect sentence, I will wait for the perfect word to jump into my mind, which of course never happens. So ends up, I waste half the time waiting, and only have half the time remaining to cram whatever second rated stuff I have rushing to be put onto paper in my brain. I know it is not a good thing to do. Yet I have no idea how to rectify this problem. Until the problem is resolved, I think no improvement for my writing will occur.

Finally, it almost slipped out of my mind how hardworking I was in the past. I used to role play nearly every single day, and try my best to write a poem every single month. Of course, I did write a journal - albeit the traditional paper version, until I decided to blog it - frequently too. All these stopped last year, which coincided with the year I came to Singapore. I am convinced it is not a coincidence now, though I haven't figured out what in Singapore has deterred me from practicing writing regularly, which contributed to my English going downhill.

Of all the reasons above, I think the main ones are my perfectionism and lack of practice. I shall start blogging more often, so that it can help curb my problem of perfectionism, and give me some practice in writing, on top of those given by my teacher at school.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


I'm still doing very well in Singapore.. I hope I can keep up the momentum and continue to strive for excellence in my end of year exams.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Blow Wind Blow

It's now the end of term 3 week 1 and I summarise this week as being horrendous in general. There were still some bright and shiny gems this week but unfortunately they all turned dull too early, or rather they couldn't fight against the overwhelmimg dullness that clouded over them and were outnumbered.

The bright and shiny gems of the week were my results. Before the month long June holidays, we had our mid year exams. The last day of our exams was the last day of school, so of course we had to wait till after the school holidays to know our results, which is this week, term 3 week 1. To be honest, I had no expectations for my results because it is the first major exam I'm having at this school. I like to give myself space, to see how well or badly I did, so that I will know what to do the next time. So this mid year exam was rather like an experiment to me, but not without some pressure as I scored quite well in the common test. Anyway I am very pleased with my performance for the mid year exam. I topped six out of eight subjects in my class. But then again, my class is not the best class, so I did not top the subjects in the entire cohort. Still, that was enough to keep me happy for one and a half day.

What happened next came so fast that I couldn't believe it could all have happened right after I received super good news. Firstly, the weather this week has been quite unpleasant. It rained on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, which means more than half the week It is in fact raining right now as I am typing this post. But rain cools the weather, so I guess it balances out the plus and minus, which of course is the inconvenience of walking in the rain and getting wet.

Secondly, the issue of changing seats. I can't say it was totally a surprise, as my teacher did say she had to split us (me and my table partner) up if our results turned out to be bad. As it happens, my results were splendid, I was top in class so I thought ok we're safe now. But no! She said the disparity of our results are too huge. We cannot sit together. We have different study methods. Uh what was that about? How does she know we have different study methods when she has never seen us study? It was obviously just an excuse. Fine with that, she wanted to change our place. What's bugging me is why can't she just say that we are very noisy and disrupting the class? She said 5 subject teachers including her, think that we should split up. Right that's nearly all of my teachers. I highly think that is not true.

Originally, my teacher moved my table partner away, but she couldn't find a suitable place for her without many many objections, from both my partner and the person she was supposed to change with. So I was changed away instead, and another friend in our group of four, to a place which is at the last row, which means I have one less person to talk to. And there's no one on my left side, which is another less person to talk to. And I just don't quite fancy my new table partner and the people around me. Sigh I guess I'll just have to put up with them as it is unlikely that I get to change back to my original place, which brings me to my next point.

On the day after we got back our English paper, I saw that I had written the wrong format for my situational writing, which never never occurs. It is the first that I've got the wrong format, which is the one that my teacher taught. So I started discussing all my teacher's flaws with my friends, who all agree with me. Unfortunately she heard us. She didn't tell me that she heard me, she told my friend she heard her, which obviously means she heard me too. Well whatever. I can hardly care that she heard us. At least now she knows how much we hate her. But I would rather have told her directly, or she tell me directly that she heard me. She doesn't seem to be showing any signs that she heard me, she still addresses me, not that she does that a lot. I can't seem to help but speculate that, maybe the whole issue of changing place is just because she heard me. That's why she changed our seats, as revenge or whatever.

Anyway she's not the only teacher I don't like. In fact, I think I don't like all of my current teachers except humanities teacher and I'm indifferent about my physics teacher. We just changed all of our science subject teachers. The irony is we are a triple science class. What are we now with not so good teachers for all sciences? It's also been said that we are the worst class in terms of academics amongst all four triple science classes. Then why are they changing our teachers? It's not that they're giving us better teachers. How do they expect us to perform when we have lousy teachers? They should stop giving the best class the best teachers. They are already the best class. A not so good teacher will not harm them because they can manage on their own. This is usually what happens in Malaysia but in Singapore, no. The best class gets the best teachers, the worst class gets the worst teachers. Yeah well like they have given up hope on us. So there's nothing we can do but buck up on our own.

All my teachers are now teaching from the textbook. All my previous teachers never used the textbook. It's like opposite ends of the pole. We are all resenting this style of them right now. It will take some getting used to. However by the time we've got used to it, our previous teachers would have returned to us, except the physics teacher, who has left for good, and we will have to revert back to our old style again. I appeal to the school, can you please stop playing blow wind blow with us? We're not having fun, I don't know if the teachers are having fun. And it's not like the teachers are super nice as a person too. They're not very, I guess. One has no sense of humour, one is overly sasrcastic, the other is.. I don't know. In addition to that, we now have a co form teacher who does not teach us any subjects. Why the need for his presence then? And we have dialogue sessions with our form teacher and co form teacher. I can't imagine having a dialogue with someone who does not teach us at all. Well good thing I already had a dialogue session early in the year, so I hope I won't have to be down for another dialogue session. Another thing, the only classes with co form teachers are my class, N and S. N and S are the last class of double science. My class is the last class (unofficially) of triple science. It's like equating us to the last class of the whole cohort, who usually have lots of problems and are hard to manage. How humiliating and unfair it is.

I guess if I want to continue my performance for the end of year exam, I have to build up momentum on my own. Sad case. I didn't come to Singapore to get an education like this, or to have different teachers push us around.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Picture This

My [weird] physiotherapist told me that she can just imagine me in long hiking trousers, digging, in a desert. Huh. She asked me to post it on my blog that a crazy therapist told me xxx.. and here it is LOL.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

OAC Day 3

Worst day of all three days, but still fun I would guess. Worst of the best. How bad can it be? There were no activities arranged for us today. Instead we spent the entire time, or almost 75% of the time cleaning up. Since we had finished all our outdoor cooking sessions, we were able to finish breakfast early. Not a good thing at all.

When we woke up and met with our instructors, we were told that we would be cleaning the dining hall. What a relief, at least it's not the toilet. So we ate breakfast heartily. Who knew, after we had breakfast, one of the leaders came and told us to clean the toilets. Oh well we didn't make a fuss about it as we were all sporty people. We cleaned and cleaned, quite having fun as well splashing water and screaming at the sight of cockroaches. After some time, the toilets were cleaned to the satisfaction of the leaders. We thought we were done for the day but again, who knew, we were then asked to clean the dining hall.

This was met with confusion, because we thought that there was a miscommunication among the instructors and leaders and we were indeed assigned to clean the toilets. So what were we doing cleaning the dining hall then? Nevertheless we still wiped the tables and chairs, lift the chairs onto the table, arrange the tables, swept the floor blah blah. Until the other class who had outdoor cooking finished their breakfast. Their instructor asked them to start cleaning the dining hall. I stared at her with disbelief. What? We just cleaned it! Was she trying to insult our bad cleaning or what?

So that other class began sweeping the floor, when we clearly had just finished sweeping it. We were unhappy about it. Now they asked both classes to arrange the tables together. We stood to our grounds and did not want to budge. The other class, seeing us stationary, decided not to do anything either. My friend even overheard someone saying since they (referring to us) had been cleaning, why not just let them continue cleaning? After seeing this 'commotion', the instructor decided that they should just let us rest. Finally one sensible thing they did. In the end we found out that the other class was supposed to clean the toilets but because they were still eating, my class was instructed to do so. They escaped a much worse chore and are still here complaining? I was aghast.

After that we were lazing about, then packed up and left Labrador Camp Site. After a short debrief back at school, we were dismissed. I had post camp sickness after that. My legs were itching to climb things, and I developed some rashes. All in all, I really enjoyed the whole course of the camp.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

OAC Day 2 (Part 3)

Campfire.. what can I say. It was a total disappointment, despite everyone saying that it's the highlight of the event. Well not really, they said it was supposed to be the highlight of the event. But didn't turn out that way huh.

It was very dark, but it did live up to its name and there was a fire in the center of the ring. Even though there were campfire performances, and my class being one of the classes to perform, it was so dark that we couldn't really see anything much besides hear the people who were singing. As for campfire singing, we spent a whole two or three weeks to learn the song and I even embarrassed myself with my horrible voice but in the end, we only ended up singing like less than half of the songs. And as we were singing a capella and no one really remembered the lyrics, we were just humming all the way. It was quite messy. At least we sang the longer songs like Top of the World, If We Hold On Together, When You Remember etc and didn't sing some of my disliked songs like Cannibal King, and the OAC song that our school wrote themselves (this is an assumption based on the lyrics and melody). The teachers were so boring. They had been sitting by themselves, talking, sleeping, eating, enjoying, stoning, whatever among themselves throughout the whole camp and didn't even join us during campfire! We were doing a cheer and invited teachers to do along with us but they were just stoning there, sipping their drinks. Gah.

I guess the main reason we didn't enjoy campfire much was because we were expecting too much from it but only got so little of our expectations met. Also, we were all tired out from the day's activities. It was really a heavy day for us, or at least my class. I went back to my room feeling a little empty. It was the last night too, and I was feeling a little campsick already, but nonetheless, I managed to catch a good night's sleep.

Friday, March 19, 2010

OAC Day 2 (part two)

After a tiring morning, well not really, most people I suppose had their energy eaten up by fear. Anyway I was hungry, with the breakfast which was insufficient. But lunch was a packet of instant noodle. Great. Even at home, one packet is not enough for me. So not surprising that I was again hungry after lunch. I started to wonder, was this an adventure camp or a famine camp? Probably a combination of both.

We had low elements and flying elements left. Not too bad, they didn't require much energy, or so I thought. Low elements were quite fun. We had activities that included sending balls across an 'acid pit', balancing a see-saw, walking some whatever thing and climbing a wall. This was one time when we got to spend some more time with our classmates, solving problems together and being mad together. You know how much I enjoy being active.

I was exhausted after low elements. Not because of the activities, but because of the amount I was talking. Bad thing really. Next was rock climbing. At first glance, the rock wall looked really really threatening. I didn't even dare to go try the first rock wall. That was the first and only time I did not have the courage to try out something throughout OAC. Anyway the leader said everyone had to climb at least once, so I went to the other rock wall to climb, which looked milder and non threatening. Did I ever discover how much fun rock climbing was! Yes it was tiring, hanging halfway there, while you feel like giving up. But giving up is not in my nature. So I went on and on and on to the top. Didn't feel anything much about it. I just felt like I could continue climbing endlessly. And even after OAC, I still had the urge to climb things for quite some time, before time washed it away. After I climbed the rock wall, I turned to be an anchorman, where my finger's skin got peeled off from pressing down onto the harness too hard. Ouch. My third visit to the first aid room. Am I injury prone? Well unlikely I think. It got me worried I couldn't continue the other activities, having an injured finger. I was afraid I couldn't grip on anything. What if my grip slacked while on the zip line? It was one of the activities I anticipated the most. But as it turned out, all activities I anticipated were a let down, whereas the other activities where I didn't get my feelings all hyped about it, left me with immense satisfaction after doing them.

Finally, our last activity before camp fire, was flying elements. These were a disappointment. Well not really. The zip line or flying fox, whatever it is called, was a huge disappointment. I thought it would be quite fun, but realized it was the most boring activity in the whole camp. You just jump down, end of story. Boring, no? I shouted some lines, which made it a little interesting but still, it was boring. Abseiling on the other hand, was fun fun fun. This is my second favourite activity, after rock climbing. Do you notice the similarity between these two activities? Yes you climb. One up, and the other down. I wonder what's with me and climbing? So what did I like about abseiling, besides the fact that I got to climb walls? During abseiling, I had the sensation that my life was tied onto someone else's and I could do nothing about it besides letting myself fall, fall and fall... and I kept banging into the wall. Oh I failed it miserably, but I still liked the activity on a whole.

End of the day's activity. Lucky we had no more outdoor cooking session and could eat as much as we wanted for dinner. Not that the food was very appetizing, so I still didn't eat quite so much, even though Mr Chue asked me to eat up. But I just couldn't, much as the hostel food was even worse than this.