I’ll be outstation for a short bit soon and this morning I was wondering what to do during my break. I thought of visiting the mall, or museum, or just plain people-watch. I listed out a list of things I might do, and if it’s a good thing to do.
Then I saw a problem: none of my activities included people.
You see, I don’t usually see it as a problem because I would’ve spent the previous days with people. I only like to add drama, some spice to my life by saying “I’m so alone!” having people pity me on social media but in reality it’s something I enjoy.
(I don’t think people who are on my social media read my blog; hello)
Disclaimer: this post is going to be less about David Archuleta but more on my insights about the whole trip. I travelled 1500 miles to see David Archuleta. Specifically, 2430 km or 1509 miles.
When David announced his mission back in 2011, there were things I guessed:
- I already guessed it. He prophesied it in Who I Am.
- He will be back
- and I will be there when he is.
- I guessed it will be in the Philippines because his fans there are crAaAaaZzy
Years went by and I totally forgot about these things. I stopped reading his updates, downloaded/bought his music when he released them but I just didn’t care to know more anymore. It wasn’t important to me anymore to know about everything he was doing.
It was my last week of teaching in Jakarta when he announced going to the Philippines. Light bulbs went on in my head and I knew where my salary’s going to go to. I’ve been looking for meaning more than I had been looking for money, so if I hadn’t accepted the teaching job I wouldn’t have been able to afford this trip. Another story about this teaching job: I didn’t want to do it. But I guess now I know why I did.
I travelled from my home in Malaysia to get to the airport in Singapore. I bought priority passes and front rows because I just wanted to focus on my trip there. But things don’t always work out the way you plan.
I started a war. Sent out my battle cry. And I’ve been here before. Fighting me, myself and I. When I try to prove that I’m never gonna lose I pushed too hard, I pushed too far. Trying to be brave till it’s more than I can take so many times till I realised:
Take a breath, look at how you’re trying to think it to death. Even if you’re in the crossfire don’t forget that you don’t have to be invincible. Take a step, even if you’re falling it ain’t over yet. You don’t have to be invincible.
I counted to ten, stepped back so I can see. How bad it can get when I’m the enemy. I put my weapons down until I found a better way. I’ll never change if I’m too afraid to break, gotta let it go, let the whole world know (to).
You’ll never know. You’ll never know how strong you are. Till you’re strong enough to let your armour fall.
I went online today to read a post on Facebook by a makcik who checked in to a hospital with the hashtags #cucupertama #allahlebihmenyayanginya (first grandchild, Allah loves him more)
I’m friends with her daughter. Well, not exactly friends, but I know her name, attended her wedding, and if I bumped into her outside, we would recognise each other. Acquaintances, it is. I read this Facebook post and …somehow…everything for me slowed down. I don’t know why I feel affected by this.
Some people commented “tahniah” on this makcik’s post. I’m like no no no this is not tahniah (congratulations). This is takziah (condolences). That’s the problem with people who don’t read till the end. The comments and the makcik’s replies flowed in. It turned out my friend had been seventeen weeks pregnant, but the baby had been dead for five weeks. I can’t wrap my head around it at all. I grew up secretly reading my mother’s Dr. Miriam Stoppard’s Pregnancy and Birth Book, I knew a liiiiittle bit about pregnancy. She carried a dead foetus around for five weeks! I don’t remember this in the book. How does that work? How did she feel? Sigh. May you stay resilient and strong through His tests.
I have another friend who was single when I met her, but got married two years later. She had posted on Instagram that she was experiencing #bleeding. I hoped that everything would be okay for her. The next time I saw her she was carrying a heavy bag. I stopped her. “Pregnant women shouldn’t be carrying heavy things!” She smiled at me. Something…seemed off. My mouth then slipped out the words, “Are you …still pregnant?” A weak smile she gave me and
Today I left the house feeling nothing unusual. I was a bit aware that I hadn’t been myself, but I didn’t think much of it. My appetite’s been lesser too. I used to feel hungry all the time but I’ve been okay on 1.5 meals per day these days. Don’t know why.
Power Cat (a Malaysian brand cat food; it’s okay) is out of stock everywhere but one place in JB. I didn’t really want to go there because it’s a luxury cattery, but there was no choice since Carpet vomited out his new cat food. This luxury cattery which I won’t name sells purebred cats and the items are pricier than normal. I never stopped to “admire” the kitties in the cage, the same I wouldn’t enter a zoo. I happen to have a membership card not out of loyalty but from previous purchase when Power Cat was out too.
A man walked out into the store from the back door as I was looking at cat potty. Our eyes met and we talked. He was the owner. They have three branches and a fourth one, “bigger than this”, is opening soon. He asked me how many cats I have. “Eleven,” I responded. “Your wet food cost goes in the thousands of ringgit per month?” “We buy raw fish for them,” I answered, not answering the question.
“All of them.”
He then paused for a second, and then pointed at the glass case.
“If you had one million and you did this, within six years you could get three million.”
I knew what he was talking about.
A few days ago I met up with an old friend from my primary school here in Johor. We bumped into each other in January 2016, said we’ll catch up someday, and it’s not until a year later that we had the chance to.
I remember her as someone who was very neat, wanted to grow up to be a cartoonist (she’s in Biotech now). Oh this is her, by the way. I hope she doesn’t mind me putting her face on my blog.
She said that she remembered me as the one who told them stories. I was caught off-guard. I know that after I moved from Johor I discovered my love for writing stories in Singapore. Nadia added that while we were waiting for the bus back home or something, they saw me as the person who would entertain them with stories.