Quick updates

Hi everyone!

It’s been a while since I’ve updated my blog and I thought that I would just update with a few things that’s happening over here.

Schools in Italy has closed for the summer about a week ago, so I’m a little bit freer – so I’ve been filling up my time playing ingress and trying to pick up Inkscape – Flash has been giving me issues, which is why I haven’t been making any cartoons for the longest time.

The pity is, that I can’t convert any of my past works so I pretty much have to start from the very beginning which is a very daunting to me.

But inkscape has been interesting to use so far, I still have a lot to learn but I think I’ll get there eventually.

We celebrated Hari Raya last Friday – it was very low key affair, since it’s not a recognised holiday here in Italy. This year’s fast has been a tough one – with the heatwave that has been going on here … not to mention also that the days are long during the summer, compared to how it is in Singapore. I felt completely lethargic and I wanted to do was just to sleep. Preferably in a tub full of cold body lotion.

(On the other hand, I’ve lost a significant amount of weight which is always a source of cheap thrills for me)

Nevertheless, I’ve been busying myself with flamenco – our recital is coming up next week … And this week we’re meeting for practise almost every day. My goodness!

I’ve someone asking me if I’m feeling nervous, and to be honest, I haven’t really thought about it till then! I don’t want to think too much about it right now, and just focus on the choreography. Don’t want to freak myself up especially since I’ve been placed in front.

The thing is, it isn’t my first time performing – I did quite a number of recitals when I was in school – I was in the choir for some years and then for a short time I did Malay dance. I don’t remember feeling nervous because the way that I dealt with stage fright was quite easy. I just took off my glasses. Nothing freaked me since I couldn’t see anything. Also, it was at school, and there was no one there I wanted to impress, so I’m pretty much over it ūüėõ

Anyway, I’m sure that everything will go fine. I’ll update you all on how it goes!

Sidenote : Did I tell you guys that I’ll be in Singapore in August? Lets meet up! ūüôā

You can wear my baju kurong

So not too long ago, there was this American girl who wore a cheongsam for her prom. A cheongsam, as you know, is Chinese dress, usually made of cotton or silk and is designed to accentuate the female curves. It’s gorgeous, making it something that a lot of women, even non the Chinese, interested to wear them.

I think she looks cute in it, even if I would have styled the hair different and think the pose in the third picture looks awkward.

However, there was a¬†guy who took offence to it, saying that it was inappropriate for her to wear it for prom. I get the feeling that the guy is being a troll, in the sense that he wants attention by spouting vitriol and doesn’t actually believe in what he is spouting.

Why would he? Even Chinese people in China doesn’t have an issue with it like how you see in the video below :

Personally for me, I think I’d be happy if someone was interested enough to wear my cultural outfits. In fact, I’d be proud for them to wear a beautiful Baju Kurong or a Kebaya to a nice event.

Back in school, once a year, we were even encouraged to wear a different outfits for racial harmony day. A lot of of were excited for this day, because it was a chance for us to wear something different instead of our normal uniforms and it was fun exchanging and trying out outfits with each other. Racism would not even cross our minds as we don the clothes.

(My gosh, this picture was taken 20 years ago)

Why is it so bad that we wear other cultural outfits? I can understand with certain cultures, you need to be of a certain class to be able to wear them – like how it is for wearing the headdress for the Native American tribes.

But for the rest, we shouldn’t have to feel afraid to wear something beautiful, in case that someone would feel offended because we’d be misappropriating their culture.

Burn house beat mother

I mean, if you really want to be pissed off at cultural misappropriation, be pissed off at something that makes more sense – like someone who has never eaten rendang before, telling you how to cook rendang.

With that logic, I should just wear a sarong all year round, even when the temperature drops to minus zero degrees during the winter in Rome. I should stop wearing jeans because it’s only meant for cowboys and miners. And while I’m at it, I should stop learning to dance flamenco because I’m not Spanish, stop learning Italian because I’m not Italian and don’t eat sushi, burrito, paella and all the delicious food in the world.

What nonsense.

Letting go

It’s been a while since I’ve written a new post. Yikes! My apologies for that, but on the other hand, if you’re on Instagram, I’ve been posting¬†stories when I can. You know, instant gratification and all that ūüėõ

But I’ll try to update more, and now that the weather here in Rome is getting wonky, it’s a good opportunity for me to start hitting the laptop. There are so many things that I’d love to update you guys with.

As you know, I was in Singapore during the summer and reconnecting with my friends and family.¬†Each time that I’m there, it never seems like enough but I’m grateful¬†for the amazing experience that I had.

One of the places that I went to was to my old secondary school. It was by coincidence as I saw a facebook post saying that there was a brunch event there, so I took the opportunity and went back to Bukit View Secondary Рwhere I spent my formative years.

Walking through the campus, a lot of things has changed and the building¬†didn’t looked exactly as it was before, I don’t recognize 99% of the staff there, and even the uniform has changed to a light brown compared to my white and grey.

Nevertheless, as I passed through the various rooms, there were a number of memories that flashed through my mind – pretending the sewing machines was a pedal to a car during Home Economics, trying to get anything better than a ‘C’ during Arts classes, the restroom where there used to be so many toilet paper stuck on the ceiling for some reason … I had so many happy memories here.

Which was was it was shocking to learn that a former classmate passed away not long ago. I was even thinking of him while I passed by my old classroom. His name was Safras Khan. We weren’t close but he was a memorable character – he was opinionated and confident of himself and he’d walk around with a swagger. For some reason,¬†he¬†liked to play November Rain on the PA system every chance he gets,¬†and he’d always be roaming around school with his best friend, Sufian. They were like Ying and Yang. Safras was the gregarious one, while Sufian was quiet.

When I found out that he died from a heart attack, I was surprised because we are all relatively still young. It didn’t feel as if it was that long ago since we were all in school, you know, I still have some memories that are quite vivid, including that 15 year old bespectacled boy with gelled hair.

But I think that at length, the older we get, the more we have to anticipate this happening (Especially since my aunt passed away) and it puts things in a lot of perspective that we have to let go of a lot of things. Which in turn, more and more has changed how I view upon things.

Relationships for the most part. Be it with friends, or be it with family,¬†let’s just enjoy our time with the people that we love. And even if there are people who we dislike being with, just be civil anyway, without being over the top. It’s not like you’re married to them.

There was a time when I got offended at how there were people who didn’t include me in things like dinners and conversations … I still don’t like cliques, but¬†things like that¬†happen. I just have to remember to be kind as everyone makes mistakes, myself included.

Update!

Hi everyone!

It’s been a while since I’ve done an update post so here’s one. We’re¬†almost close to June,¬†which means that in about a week’s time, public schools will be closed in Italy and I’ll be freer for some mischief ūüėÄ

Unfortunately temperatures has been quite high these days, and the Roman sun is really harsh and brutal on the skin that I have to moisturise every few hours just to relieve that horrible itchy feeling.

rinaz.net Toons

Sometimes it feels like I’m in an Outer Limits series – remember the one where a young student¬†listens to a tape and eventually gets skin deformities.

(I just realised that the younger sister is Kirsten Dunst)

In any case, we’ve now reached Ramadan, the fasting month. I guess it’s starting to get easier now¬†compared to some years back. Although waking up at 3 am and then¬†abstaining from any consumption of food and water till about 8.35 pm is still challenging nevertheless.

rinaz.net sunrise

As I don’t want to overly exert myself, last Thursday was my last day of cross training. And can you believe it? It has been 8¬†months that I’ve been training.¬†At the end of every session I feel half dead,¬†but amazingly I do enjoy them and it’s nice to have such a friendly group of mates.

rinaz.net Iron Dragon

While I don’t see any noticeable weight coming off, there are some things that I am able to do now that I wasn’t able to do 8 months ago – most noticeably, I can now jump up to the bar and kip myself up a little bit. I still can’t do a full pull up, but it’s a start.

rinaz.net Iron Dragon

Now that Ramadan is here, it’s best for me to stop because I guzzle a lot of water when I exercise. As much as I’d like to continue, I’d risk dehydration. But it’s a shame¬†though, to have 8 months of work to probably be gone in a month.

rinaz.net

(Yeah, you wish Marina!)

I haven’t been running much since doing the marathon. Nevertheless, I’m considering to participate in a running event when I’m in Singapore.

Have you heard of the¬†Durian run? You run with a whole durian and at the end of the race you get to eat that AND drink a whole coconut. It sounds amusing to me but of course, one has to be careful as this fruit is thorny. But while I’m interested, I’m not in Singapore at that date unfortunately.

rinaz.net Toon

In any case, there are quite a number of activities that I’m looking forward to¬†¬†– ¬†like seeing the Yayoi Kusama’s display¬†at the art museum, and then going to an Ingress anomaly in Malaysia with my brother. Reconnecting with friends and family. So that’ll be fun. If there are anyone who wants to go with me, just let me know ūüôā

And of course eat all the food in Singapore! I’ll warrant you that I’m going to fill my luggage with all the packed food I can fit in!

Going back to Singapore?

I’m in a bit of a conundrum. It’s been a while since my last visit to Singapore, and I’d really like¬†to go back and spend some time with¬†my family and friends.

Initially, I thought that July and August is the best time to go because I don’t have any engagements then, since a lot of things such as schools and public gyms are closed.

I’d have to go alone without Cart though, but he can’t leave the country for too long. I don’t like the idea of being away from Cart for that long, but oh well. Checking on the airline tickets though, it already costs quite a pretty penny now to compared to if we travelled in December.

Maybe¬†I should have booked on earlier instead of waiting for¬†Cart to give me the green light? I really don’t know what to do now.

The cute response is when I asked my mum for advice, since I’d most probably stay with my parents then –

Me : When would be better for me to come over? August or December? 

Mum : Come in August! And go back in December ūüėÄ

rinaz.net Haha