Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Who am I? Who are You?

This has been on my mind for some time now. And it's bugging me that I haven't ranted about it for the whole world to see. So, here goes.

I'm sure you all know that person or two that seems pretty cool but is extremely insecure at the same time. I mean, they really are very cool at first impression. But as you get to know them, you find out that they are trying really hard at it. It shouldn't take that much effort right?

They look up new trends, fashion and otherwise, regularly just so they don't miss out on anything. Maybe they were not always like that. Maybe they used to be wallflowers. So when chance gets them together with a person exactly like they aspire to be, they start idolizing them. And then slowly they morph into that person. They idolize this individual so much so that these idols can do no wrong in their eyes. I met this girl once who follows another person all the time. Not literally though - I mean she does everything the other one does. One time I said something about not liking this person's hairstyle and she actually, physically got angry at me. I was shocked.

When I see this happening to people, I can't help but wonder if they are really themselves. What I'm trying to say is, do they really know who they are? Do they have a personality of their own? Do they make their own choices? Should a person long so much to belong that they become an entirely different person? If you have watched Mean Girls or Jawbreaker or one of the  many other movies with the same story line, you would know that it never ends well. 




I don't have a child of my own, but I do have two younger siblings, and I fear for them. I fear that this might happen to one of them. My brother often talks about what his friends do. I can tell that he thinks some of them are pretty cool, and that's okay. What is not okay, however, is that they are not really his kind of things and I am scared that he might decide to adopt them anyway. He's a pretty awesome guy - I wouldn't change much about him, but I wonder if he knows that. I try telling him as often as I could that he's pretty cool too. 

Throughout all those years in school and later at work, I've met and known different people. I was never the most popular person. I didn't always have the most friends or the coolest. But that didn't matter to me. Because for some reason, I've always been okay with who I am. I may not be the most stylish. I may not have the newest gadgets. I may not even like the most popular bands or movies. But then I don't really have to, do I? I mean, shouldn't I be allowed to have my own opinion? 

I refuse to pretend to like the newest trend in fashion just because everybody is wearing it. I refuse to be friends with a person because he/she is the most popular one. I thank God every day because I don't feel the need to do so many things I don't like or want just so that I belong to the 'in-crowd'. 

I am me and I am darn happy with it. 

Do you know people like this?

Images from here and here.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Home

Small as it may be, this is where I come from. And I can't wait to go back.


Happy Friday everyone :)
Take care.


Sunday, January 20, 2013

Shoeless, Cereal Hating, Yellow loving Happy Girl

It's the weekend and I'm just recovering from a nasty cold so I couldn't come up with anything new to blog about. But then ZDub from Raising Colorado did this thing where she answered 48 questions and it was so much fun reading it that I thought I'd do it too. Because I'm too lazy to be more original and if anybody is reading this, they might just learn a little something new about me. 

So how about it, huh?

1. Were you named after anyone?
I think so. My grandma. Her name was Zainab, I'm Zaina...so you know :)

2. When was the last time you cried?
It's been a while. I'm a happy girl :)

3. Do you like your handwriting?
I don't know if I like it, but people say it's unique.

4. What is your favorite lunch meat?
Beef pastrami.

5. Do you have kids? 
Nope. Not yet. ;)

6. If you were another person, would you be friends with you?
Totally.

7. Do you use sarcasm a lot?
Not a lot, but yeah.

8. Do you still have your tonsils?
I believe I do.

9. Would you bungee jump?
Maybe.....wait, no. I won't.

10. What is your favorite cereal?
I don't like cereal. Eeww. I can't even stand the smell. I know, I'm strange.

11. Do you untie your shoes when you take them off?
Never. People do that?

12. Do you think you are strong?
I want to say yes but then I hear laughing in my head so I'm going to say no.

13. What is your favorite ice cream?
 Movenpick's Passion fruit & Mango

14. What is the first thing you notice about people?
The way they're dressed. I'm sorry.

15. Red or Pink?
PINK!!

16. What is the least favorite thing about yourself?
I'm a pushover :(

17. Who do you miss the most?
It's not just one person. I miss my family back home. It's been too long since the last time I saw them all. And my bestie all the way in Bangladesh.

18. What is the technique you need to work on the most?
Being a domestic goddess.

19. What color shoes are you wearing?
Hee, hee. I'm not wearing any. I'm in bed.

20. What is the last thing you ate?
A sandwich.

21. What are you listening to right now?
Lips of an Angel - Hinder.

22. If you were a crayon, what color would you be?
Yellow for sure :D

23. Favorite smells?
Lemon and coffee.

24. How important are your political views to you?
My brain isn't advanced enough for political views.

25. Mountain hideaway or beach house?
Definitely mountain hideaway. I've been around beaches all my life. I want a change of scenery.

26. Favorite sports to watch?
I'm not much of a sports fan but when I do watch, it's football. Or soccer if you're from the U.S.

27. Hair color?
Black.

28. Eye color?
Dark Brown.

29. Do you wear contacts?
Yep. Would be nearly blind without. I wear glasses at home though.

30. Favorite food?
Hawaiian supreme pizza from Pizza Hut.

31. Scary movies or happy ending?
I live for the happily ever afters.

32. Last movie you watched?
The Perks of Being a Wallflower.

33. What color shirt are you wearing?
Black and white checkered.

34. Summer or Winter?
I have never experienced winter. Ever. But still I'd chose summer because I can't stand the cold.

35. Favorite dessert?
Creme' caramel.

36. Strength training or cardio?
Strength training. I need it.

37. Computer or television?
Computer, if I really must choose.

38. What book are you reading now?
Five Days In Paris - Danielle Steel.

39. What is on your mouse pad?
No mouse. No mouse pad. Only trackpad.

40. Favorite sound?
Rain. And waves crashing on the shore.

41. Favorite genre of music?
I listen to everything. I don't have a particular favorite.

42. What is the farthest you have been from home?
Bangkok, Thailand.

43. Do you have a special talent?
I really, really wish I did, but I don't.

44. Where were you born?
Male', Maldives.

45. Where are you living now?
Nilai, Malaysia.

46. What color is your house?
It's an apartment building so I'll just tell you the color of my room - It's Sherwin Williams' Sassy Green.

47. What color is your car?
What car? Heheh...Don't have one.

48. Do you like answering 48 questions?
I do. Back in middle school everyone did this and I loved it then too :)

Have a good weekend.
Take care :)

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Bronchitis is a Bitch

It really is you guys. 

I have had it for a week and it seems to be getting progressively worse ever day. And I don't need tell you guys about how glamorous it is either right? I mean the coughing up phlegm and sounding like froggy from little rascals, you already know about that, huh?

Image source

Ooh, and this gets better. Classes started on Tuesday and I haven't attended any. I mean I am not bed ridden or anything like that but I just don't want to be the receiving end of those glares you get when you are coughing up a storm during the lecture. 

Tonight, however, I have decided that I'm going to go to class tomorrow anyway. I am going to drink some ginger tea, swallow some cough medicine, and drag myself to class because otherwise I'm just handing them money for no reason. 

Meanwhile, do you know any home remedies for this? Because my abdomen hurts from the strain of coughing so much, I feel like there's a giant rock lodged in my chest, and at this point I kinda wanna scrape my throat clean with a wire brush. 

Hope the flu season is treating you and your family better.
Take care :)

Sunday, January 13, 2013

I Think It's Time To Tell You Something Personal

Do you watch funny videos of people falling off places or having awkward accidents? Do you laugh when these things happen even when you know it's not polite? If so, this one is for you.

I am very clumsy. There, I said it. Because dignity is overrated, right?

Image source


I knock off glasses, I walk into all kinds of things, and get hit by stuff, even when they are not in my way.  Seriously, the dining table in my house is near one wall and the refrigerator is on the opposite wall. There is plenty of space in the middle for me to walk into the kitchen - but I always manage to stub my toes on one of the chairs or the table itself when I walk by. I don't know why. 

One night, I walked into a dustbin. Not 'in' to it literally, but you know what I mean. It was at the train station and I was walking, not looking where I was going  - because for some unfathomable reason I couldn't take my eyes off the train. Another day, I was walking and looking at a cute dog and before I knew, I had walked face first into the back of a car. A parked one.

Recently, I walked into a table in my room, the corner went into my belly and it hurt like nobody's business. I immediately turned around and walked to the kitchen where a got a huge scratch on my elbow getting a glass out of the cupboard. Just last night, I got another scratch on my forearm getting a glass out of the same cupboard. Not five minutes later I scratched my elbow, same hand, getting a dish out of another cupboard. Now that I'm writing this, I think the kitchen cupboards have a grudge against me. 

Last year on my birthday, my darling husband, his nephew, and our friend egged me. And then they threw flour at me. So I did it back to them and when all ended, the whole living room was covered in eggs, flour, and coca cola. Appealing picture in your mind right now, huh? While cleaning up, I fell on my nearly perfect behind into the total mess. 

The times I have knocked over glasses of water and juice are countless. I have burned the same spot on my hand twice, doing the same thing. I'm serious. The first one healed and there was a scar. It got bigger with the second time. There is this sliding sorta latch on my bathroom door and I have had my finger stuck in it more than I care to admit.

Worst of all, I am always elbowing Nafew. All the time. 

And I'm sure I have forgotten to mention a lot of other things I have done or has happened to me because there's just too many.

For a long time, I thought it was not me. I just thought things were in my way. But now, I have made my peace with the fact that it's all me. These accidents don't even surprise me anymore. In fact. I kind of expect them now.I find random black and blue spots on my body all the time and I have no memory of anything happening, but I know something did. I see a staircase and a picture of me tripping forms in my mind automatically. Because it's me.

Are you clumsy? Or do you know someone who is as clumsy as me?

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Getting Thai Visas in KL, for Newbies

For us, getting a Thai Visa in KL, Malaysia took us three days and a week's worth of energy. We live quite far from KL, so our trip started on a Tuesday night. We went to stay at a friend's place in KL because it would be easier for us to get to the embassy the next morning. Since we found we couldn't get the on-arrival Visa only a day ago, and it was Christmas that day, we couldn't get our pictures taken or photocopied out passports and tickets earlier. So when we reached Ampang Park, area where the embassy is located, around nine forty five the next morning, we first went to get our passport sized pictures taken and get the photocopies made. 

It didn't take long but the pictures a man took with a hand held camera came out looking more like mugshots than passport photos. Oh, well, nothing much we could do about it so we proceeded to the embassy which was a 10-15 minute walk. It was scorching hot.

At the entry of the embassy sat a man, probably in his early sixties. Before entering, we had to show him our passports and he wrote our names, passport numbers and nationality in a log book, painstakingly slow. A nice man though.  He then gave us the Visa forms. 

We took a number, filled up the forms and waited.  The Thai Embassy website told us we'd need our passport, copies of passport, copies of ticket, Visa fee, and the photos. We had them all.

An hour of waiting and our number was up. Surprisingly, it wasn't long at all, considering there were around a hundred numbers ahead of us. We went up to the counter where a glum female officer sat. In the short encounter we had, she never once made eye contact with us. She also never asked for anything - she demanded. So much for customer services. Upon inspecting our documents, she asked for letters from our University. What? We didn't know we needed that! A list inside the embassy office, longer than the one on the website, apparently asks for it. Who knew? Reading further down the list, we found we were supposed to have our certificate of marriage, certificate of yellow fever vaccine and bank account statements as well.

Us being morons and not thinking ahead, we didn't bring our yellow fever vaccine certificates or marriage certificate. Because we're coming to study and we're broke, so why would be possibly need those? And our bank accounts are all the way in Maldives too, so it would be impossible to get an account statement in one day. 

Starving, and already twelve thirty noon, we rushed back to Nilai, where we actually stay, to go to the university and beg them for letters. Hours of travelling, filling out request forms, and still no food in our stomachs later, we were informed we would only get the letters the next day. In the afternoon. The embassy accepts Visa forms only from nine thirty until eleven thirty in the morning so our only chance would be applying again on Friday and getting the Visa on Monday morning. We had left all our stuff at the place we stayed in KL, so we came home minus our toothbrushes, laptops, phone charger, my make-up and contact solution, and our glasses. We managed Wednesday and Thursday without those. 

Friday morning, we woke up before sunrise and headed to KL again. We were in the embassy by nine thirty sharp. While the elderly man wrote down our information, I asked another man there what time we were supposed to collect the Visas on Monday. He informed us that the embassy will be closed on Monday because it's New Year's Eve. The newly posted notice we saw later said they will be closed on Tuesday too. So we're not getting our Visas?

We went in anyway, hoping for the best. We had to go to a different counter which meant a different officer. Previous night, we had gathered all the documents we could get here and we were as prepared as we could be. She only took the photos, passports, money and letters. We told her about traveling on Monday, and she told us to come earlier next time but said we'd get them that day. YAY!

Four twenty in the afternoon, we were holding our passports and admiring our new Visas. Phew! Up until few minutes before that, I thought the money we spent on the tickets and hotel were all money gone down the drain, but things pulled through.

We went to BANGKOK!!






A tip for anyone who wants a Thai visa in Malaysia - do not rely on the website alone for updated information. There is a long list of required documents they may or may not ask for at the embassy. There is no information desk, just a bulletin board. Check the list as well as other requirements at the embassy and be prepared before applying because there is a long queue there most days and a lot of time could be wasted otherwise. 

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Bangkok Trip

Just got home a few hours ago.

Too tired to write a new post.

Here are a few sneak peeks for upcoming posts though :D

Just as we arrived, in the State Railway of Thailand

Outside the Arts and Culture Museum

With my little cousin in a Crocs shop in Central World shopping mall

Inside the Arts and Culture Museum

At the Floating Market

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

2013

HAPPY NEW YEAR, EVERYONE!!!


If all is going right I'm in a train, on my way to Bangkok.

Be back soon :)

I hope this year is happier, more exciting, and even more crazier than the last!

*Image from here