Monday, December 31, 2012

Confession No. 44

Please let today be a positive sign of how things will be in 2013.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Wishing people to have a Merry Christmas is not going to hack away at my belief. It teach me to be a better person. If what you people say are true, then my belief must be as thin as a pencil because I sure did wished it plenty enough during my 2 years in Nashville. Next you're going to say that eating candy canes means I'm supporting another religion.

Oh such silly people. I'm ashamed of you guys.

I believe that we're all, at the end of the day, are the same. At the very basic, we're humans. People. So rely on your common human manners thingie and use that to think. We're not taught to be rude to others. We're taught to be tolerant to other people's beliefs. But why are there so many people who sneer at ones who are different?

To all of my readers who do celebrate Christmas, either for religious reason or culture:

Merry Christmas

I hope you guys have a great time, doing all those things you do, apart from drinking eggnog, kissing under mistletoe  having a family dinner and opening presents (My knowledge are all based on movies. Shame on you Hanis) .

Here's a song that I've been listening to non stop for the past week, annoying Mokesart with the lyrics.

My Best Friend's Wedding.

Yesterday, I spent 8 hours in the car with the parents. Where to? Mamon's wedding. Mamon is her pet name, but her real name is Shima and we've been friends since July 2007 in our very first class during our diploma days. We were official roommates for only 1/2 a year but I crashed her room which was always a mere few doors away so often that I knew her roommates better than my own.

We gossiped, ranted, bitched and became close friends. She slept over at my house few times and I met her mother once, and had dinner at her aunt's house once. As we became friends, she and Paan aka the guy she married got together a month into our diploma, 7th August 2007. Those two are classmates with me so I was used to them, used to barging in their dinner time together, and used to them.

When I had to add in one semester, we got separated by a semester but we still remained good friends. Random text messaging, excited bump ins at the faculty:




Yes, we did that every time we meet. She even let me bunked in her room for about 3 weeks a year ago in preparation for the finals. She once made this yummy chocolate ganache pie and I commented that I want one too. Guess who got a yummy pie two weeks later?

So you see why we drove 4 hours to go to her wedding and Mama have always liked her more than me because every time she comes over, Mama will cook her favourite dishes. Haha. So we arrived there at 12.15pm and met her father first.

"Ohh, you're Hanis!"

I'm famous yo. Her brother who is also my junior led me to her room and the shrieking started. She looked really really really pretty.  Mama got excited too and commented that she finally grown up. It was the heels. I took some pictures and the theme colour is pink for her and her stuffs, and her family members were in light creamy green.

Her cake. Her cousin made it and it was soooo pretty. Can I have one in blue and pink?

Hanis, Mamon and Mama. Look at her outfit. Its not a traditional Malay wedding outfit but more of a dress. Over here, most wedding dresses are tailor made which means you can choose any colour and design. You just need to find the fabric you want a great tailor.

This is where she sits, while waiting for the groom to arrive.

One of the many door gifts we (Our family) received. Cookies in a jar with the names printed out at the label. We also received more cookies, sweets and slices of cakes. 

All in all, it made me really happy for her. They've been together for more than 5 years, through some ups and downs and always pulled through together. May the two of you last forever and name one of your kids Hanis. 

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Death of Hope.

I'm standing outside a morgue, bitten down nails digging into my palms as I wait to identify a body. A body that was found dead under an arch of wilting roses, laid as if it just decided to fall asleep right there. The cold draft dances down the long hallway as the cheap overhead lights flickers loudly.

The doctor on duty taps his pen against his clipboard, reading the notes left by his predecessor in an ink as red as the blood in my veins. His attendant reads out the number at the top of the piece of paper before pulling open a drawer, the sound so loud it echoes in the hallway.

Dark circles under my eyes, I long to run away. To leave this dreary place, run up those confusing flights of stairs and hide in one of the city's many chocolate cafes. The sound of the doctor's heels arrives before the double door is pushed open, a strangled version of my name escaping his throat.

If the hallway outside was depressing, the morgue is suffocating. The smell of death, the sound of acceptance, the temperature of indifference and the sight of the body waiting for me is a pair of cold hands encircling my throat with evil intentions.

Breath hitched, I take small steps that are in time with my scattered heart beat. My ears are deaf to the doctor's instructions but my body registers it.

Start from the toes. Where a tag hangs from the toe. 

Slowly slide upward, to the bruises on the body's legs.

Take a deep breath before moving on to the upper half. Fingers curled into palms, hiding the blue nails with rough knuckles.

Behind me, the attendant and doctor stand in patience as my eyes take their time. Coldness creeps down my throat, the way a drink of hot chocolate would. But instead of warming up my insides, this cold spreads around my heart and waits patiently.

So patiently. For the moment where my eyes would identify the face.

A grip so tight over my heart, as my eyes filled with tears. Shaking my head, I press a fist against my heart while denial leaks from my lips. 

No no no no no no.

My knees weaken but I hold on to the what I have left.  With my eyes closed, I confirm the identity of the dead. Bruised and weakened, she had given up and laid down under the arch with no intention of waking up. 

With a fist over my heart, I whisper a goodbye and leave the room with shaky knees. Across the hallway, Dignity is waiting with a pale face. With a look at mine, he bends down, hands on his knees as he fights the urge to throw up.

A heart beat. A dozen. A deep breath.

He straightens and offers his arm. Taking it, I am led to the exit, the confusing staircase where he tells me to hold my head up high.

"Dreams ran away, Courage turned tail and now, Hope has died."

"I won't ever leave you."

"Please don't. Dignity is all I have now."

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Confession No.43

Hey Stephen
I can give you 50 reasons
Why I should be the one you choose
All those other girls
Well they're beautiful 
But would they write a story for you?

Totally butchering a Taylor Swift song here. But, you get the gist.


Tuesday Thoughts.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Big Bad Wolf Book Sale Made Me Broke.

Today, there were so many books my mind blanked out for 30 minutes as I walk among the stacks of books and tables filled with books.

But, let me start from the beggining. I picked up Eli and using her GPS, we navigated our way to the place, got lost and finally arrived there at 9.18 am. I brought a big bag and pulled it with me to the book fair, getting more excited with every steps.

First of all, I didn't take any pictures there because there were too many people, the books distracted me and I was overwhelmed. But, I'll try to describe to you.

The hall is as long as a football field, and 1/3 as wide. Fiction dominated 1/4 of it. I spend my time around there. The general fiction compromised of at least 22 long tables. Romance had a handful of tables, Sci Fi Fantasy had 3, and Young Adult had about 8-10.

Now, if only they organised those books in alphabetical order, it would have made life so much easier. But people tend to take books and put them back at different places. I blame the visitors for the mess. 

We spent about an hour browsing around, Eli in the poetry and non fiction section. I managed to get 6 books and she had 14 and we put it in the big bag, checked it in the storage area and went to the adjoining mall.

Being us, we got lost in the mall looking for Starbucks. We spent 5 minutes at a directory board, looking for it in the map before I went.

"I think .. its behind us."

Yeap. We then got our drinks and went for some takoyaki. Sat there, eating and drinking before heading back to the place. And then things got serious.

I already gave up on my list of books so I just browsed the whole Fiction section, giving Romance a skip. I spent most of my time in the General Fiction section this time, because I already got my Young Adult fix earlier. 

When there's that many books, you tend to just browse the titles and pick up the interesting looking ones to take another look at. Imagine my suprise when I found a book from my list. I grabbed it and my step got a little happy skip.

About 2-2.5 hours later, I had all of my books and put them in the bag and went with Eli to buy something to eat. We waited in line to pay for our stuffs, a total of 290 ringgit, 170 was just for my books. And then we got home.

I know, I know. You guys want to know what I bought.

This is the bag. I assure you, its not big enough with both of our books in there. Just enough space to throw in a pamphlet. It was hell to pick up and put it in the car.

My books. All 20 of them, minus the two cookbooks for Mama.

20 books in a row. I KNOW. Its like being in a harem filled with cute guys all for Hanis.

Now, the books:

1.Industrial Magic by Kelley Armstrong

2.Angelology by Danielle Trussoni

3.Daughters of Rome by Kate Quinn

4.Bridge of Sighs by Richard Russo

5. The Killer's Cousin by Nancy Werlin

6. The Lost Book of Salem by Katherin Howe

7, 8 and 9. Hit List, Bullet and Blood Noir by Laurell K Hamilton

10. Shade's Children by Garth Nix

11.The Worst Thing I've Done by Ursula Hegi

12 and 13. Mirrorscape and MirrorStorm by Mike Wilks

14 and 15. Under a Blood Red Sky and The Jewel of St Petersburg by Kate Furnivall

16.The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters

17. The Brightest Star in the Sky by Marian Keyes

18. The Richard Laymon Collection Volume 16: Night in the Lonesome October & No Sanctuary

19.Ashes by Lisa J. Bick

20.Grace by Richard Paul Evans

As you can see from the titles in bold, I managed to get 2 from the book list yesterday. The reason I got 3 books from Laurell K Hamilton is because I've read her Anita Blake books before and I loved it. Kate Furnivall's The Russian Concubine is a great read, which is why I wanted to buy the two books related to it, but it seems I only got the prequel. I had to be satisfied with the other title.

Marian Keyes is perhaps, the only one I like in the chick lit genre. But she doesn't even belong there. Her books often have a dark theme to it. Sarah Waters is one of those authors who I read when I was 14. Her books often have a lesbian theme in it, but apart from that, the plot itself is usually interesting enough.

Now, I'm going to put the books back in the bag and keep it under my bed. I need to concentrate on my finals. BOOHOO.

Before that, here's another view of my books, along with some old books in the background.

Super Excited for Shopping.

So, we aka Eliza and I are going to Big Bad Wolf Book Sale tomorrow morning. We already made our plans aka schedule sometime around midnight earlier this week.

By schedule, we mean, what time would we be leaving. What time we expect to get there. How much time should we add on in case of getting lost.  Directions.

What we need. Bottled water. Buns. Comfy shoes. A big big bag on wheels for the books. Coffee. Directions.

We planned to be there for 4-5 hours. I plan to get 20 books, maybe throw in a cookbook from Anna Olson because Mama expressed interest.

The funny thing about Eli and I, is that we like to plan our trips. Ever since high school, even for the weekly bowling trip with school's bowling club. We're the girls who text each other:

"About to leave house in 10."

"Just left house."

And so on.

So, we plan to get there around 9-ish, with coffee in our veins and buns in our tummy. I'll be heading for the fiction and she'll be heading for, in her words, poetry and dead people's books.

And then, I'm going to drag her to get some takoyaki. And lunch. I'll be bringing the camera, in case I wanna snap any pictures of the most important day of the year. 

Thank you for your suggestions the other day and after putting aside the ones I've read, which reminds me.

Yes, I love the young adult genre but before that, I was in love with Jeffrey Archer, Dianna Wyne Jones and read stuffs by Trudi Canavan and some others which is why I've read half of what you guys suggested. Oh oh, Furree, have you read The Prodigal Daughter by Archer? The reason I like the YA genre is because it has the mix of love and fantasy that seems perfect to me.

Living my teenage years, yo.

Anyway, I made a list of books I'll be on the look out for:

Books by Carol Goodman

Mortal Instruments series

Dead to You by  Lisa McMann

Dreamless by Josephine Angelini

Between the Lines by Jodi Picoult

Misery and Pet Sematery by Stephen King

Grace by Richard Paul Evans

Emotionally Weird by Kate Atkinson

Intensity by Dean Koontz

Jewel of St Petersburg and The Concubine's Secret by Kate Furnivall

Memoirs of a Geisha

Tales of Beetle the Bard by JK Rowling. 

YES, THIS BOOK IS AVAILABLE THERE. I know, just trying to capture last bits of Harry Potterdom. The rest, I'll just browse and look for ones that seem interesting.

I'm really really really excited. I can just scream. Once this is over, I can buckle down for my tests and finals.

Squeeeee. Off to bed so I can have enough energy to buy books tomorrow.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Is it?

"Is a lie really the worst thing if it's told out of love?"

Page 428, Incubus-Carol Goodman

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Being Realistic in Studying.

My SOA exam is this Thursday and I feel like closing my book, tuck into bed while watching Sinister and Futurama in between reading The Selection by Kiera Cass. No, I'm not ready.

There are optimistic people.

There are pessimistic people.

And then, there's the realistic people.

I'm of the third group. I've never been one to hope for the best and expect the worst. I try to stand back, evaluate the variables, my efforts and any wild cards before coming to a conclusion of how a situation might end like.

Case in point:

Every semester, during the study week before finals, I'll do a small simple Excel spreadsheet with my subjects and the credit hours each carry. I'll first do a table of what I hope my grades would be, and in turn would show what I hope my GPA would be.

Then, as I study and cry, I'll change those grades one by one to what I might get with the amount of studying I've done. And after sitting for each paper, I'll change the grades again to include how I felt I did for the subject. 

I never go all "Alright, I'm going to aim for 3.8 this semester." because darling, that is just putting myself up for dissapointment. I rather aim low, get higher. Its not that I don't push myself. I do. I push myself so much but without letting myself have that false hope.

So, every semester I'll see what grades I need to get to get a 3.5 GPA . And that will be the minimum grade. If I felt I did badly for a paper, I'll adjust an upcoming subject's grade and increase my studying for it.

The way I see it, I'm not going to end up crying so much at the D-Day of results. And it works fine for me.

Which is why I know that for this upcoming SOA paper, which it is the norm for people to fail the first time around, I'll be failing it. 

Don't think "Stop being so negative Hanis.". Because I alone know how much I've studied. How much I've neglected. How taking a SOA paper in one's final semester is the stupidest thing to do, unless you're really really really smart.

I'll go into the hall on Thursday, head held high and with the opinion I'm doing this for the experience. Not many are willing to even try taking it and here I'am, staring at my 734 page text book thinking of this Saturday's book shopping trip.

And now I shall go and try to understand Chapter 5 before abandoning it for 6 and 7.

Tuesday Thoughts.

Monday, December 10, 2012

A Little Promotion.

I have a friend who writes poetry which is on a whole other level compare to mine. But her work has this very personal feeling to it that you can't help feel that she's sharing a secret with you in those verses.

The good news is that her book of poems will be launched this coming Sunday and you can view the details here. Inkless, But Alright, Still is already up for some pre-ordering. Its only 25 ringgit, plus delivery.

The bad news is, they only deliver domestically. Which is bad because I keep promoting it to my online friends.

BUT, I know there are some Malaysians reading my blog so please please, take a look at these two links.

1. The event

2. How to pre-order

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Pink and Blue Dinner Night.

Every semester, every faculty in my uni would hold a dinner for final semester students. This semester, my faculty decided to make our dinner a themed one. 

Glam Night: Pink and Blue

I skipped the one held during my diploma days, opting to stay in with a dinner of fried mushroom rice, iced coffee and the Transformer series. But this time around, I was super excited enough that I was the third person to register for it and I dragged my parents to go shopping. I really wanted to fit the theme so I knew I'll be wearing either a blue abaya + pink hijab or vice versa. 10 minutes in, I came across the most beautiful piece of art and the trip was done in mere minutes.

So, the dinner was last night at this hotel, in an intimate ballroom. There were pink and blue balloons and we were late. Oh god, I had on an anklet that's full of bells and the sound I made was similar to one of those Arabian nights belly dancing girl. So after the whole speech blah blah part, came my favourite. The eating part.

Yes. Ignore those three people, I don't know them. But let me tell you, 3 out of 8 of us were taking pictures of our dinner. Pineapple fried rice, lemon chicken (so yummylicious), sweet and sour fish, vegetables, prawns in chili paste and squid stir fried with cashews and dried chilies.  I ate some rice and had two pieces of the chicken. We drank this yummy orange drink and if you can see those tiny glasses, that's out door gifts. Pink candles in glasses, wrapped in blue.

While we ate, there was the lucky draw, performances and the awards for best students etc. No, they didn't recognise how awesome I am for building myself up from one of the worst to one of the a bit above average students. Oh well. Once the dinner ended at 10.10pm, we did what we came there for. To take pictures.

Imagine this. 10 girls in our class, about 5 cameras and two iPhones. I'm pretty sure there's plenty of pictures but on my end, there's about 70 of them that I posted on Facebook. Here, are some of the best.

I was stepping off the stage after taking pictures there with the girls when my classmate told me to stop and pose for the camera. I should have done a Paris Hilton aka, hand on the waist, one foot in front. But what came out was pretty nice. As you can see, the baby blue and pink combination works quite well on me. The blue handbag is from Mama's old collection, she used back in the 90's. And I adore it.

I've decided to put myself in the middle because that seems to make me look a bit smaller. We took pictures of this using all 5 cameras, by the end my cheeks hurt from smiling.

Us blues looking silly. See my attempt at a duck face. I'm pretty relieved I don't have the talent to do a great one. 

Another silly picture, with a classmate who came in pink. Before this shot she was taking someone's picture and decided to barge into our attempt at Gangnam Style. 

One of my absent classmates was awarded with the Best Student in Degree of Actuarial Science. We held on to it and looksie looksie who decided to pose with it. My words before making someone take the picture:

I can use to lie to my relatives about being the best student. They won't know a thing. 

But notice my small small can't even see eyes. Trust me, I don't have those East Asian eyes. Its my big cheeks and my big smile.

One final shot. Grand staircase that I nearly tripped over, twice. I'm in the middle, again my look a bit smaller trick. Don't I look pretty?

It was a fun night and for the first time, I really enjoyed getting my picture taken. This would be something to be stored for the future and a tale to be told on how I rocked the pink and blue look. It seems that if I ever get married, I'll use that colour combination.

Dinner Picture. Story Later.

I'll tell more later.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Book Titles Needed.

This is a cause of celebration. I waited for this number before posting this post.

Today, the Big Bad Wolf Book Sale starts. But since the gods are so cruel, I'll be going next Saturday, armed with moolah I've saved up from Eid Fitri. I know, that's a long time for me not to touch that stash of money. All in all, my maximum budget is 220 ringgit.

Now, that is a lot, considering most of the paperback fiction is going at 8 ringgit per copy where the usual market price is about 32 -35 ringgit.


And yes, be jealous you non Malaysians. But no fear, I am here to recruit your help. Since I'm planning to use about 160 ringgit for fiction and buy one cookbook by either Anna Olson or Nigella Law, I have no idea what books to buy.

Yes, just browse and choose 20 Hanis. Do you know how hard that will bed? It takes me 2 hours to do that with 5 books. I can't stay there for 4 hours (Yes you can Hanis). Soooo

Please suggest any books to look into.

Not the Hunger Games trilogy cause I'm already at the third book, so nah. Furree, tell me which Stephen King's books that doesn't have a bajillion characters I should look into. Mark, do tell me some titles. Everyone, give me some titles. No chick lits though please.

*looks at pictures of the warehouse*

OMG, I'm gonna get the Cassandra Claire books. You know, the City of Bones thingie. I read the first book ages ago. So, that's few books down.

I have complete trust in you guys to suggest wonderful books to me.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Second Fiddle.

Third wheel second fiddle plan B,

Is there a wall that's surrounding me

Or is my voice going through a space of vacuum,

Laughter and shared jokes as I wonder

Do they even hear me from this spot

Or am I able to fade away without them noticing,

I should not care

Just laugh at their mindless chatter

Curl into my own warmth

With a daydream of a better situation.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Letter to C.

The reason this letter is not too angsty is because its been more than 2 years which is long enough for me to appreciate what I've become after it all. I have also healed and became wiser. Do read. I swear this is not as uncomfortable as the letter to E.

Tuesday Thoughts.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Letter to E.

This might just be a bit too angsty for your taste. Scroll down/ close the tab/ hit the back button. Or click on the link, read and comment.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

I'll be Writing Letters. Bad Ones.

Tonight, I realised that I've had my heart broken/ went through an emotional breakdown over 4 guys. Over the past few years. The interesting part is the initial of their first names.

C, D, E, & F.

I'm pretty sure I have to avoid guys whose names start with either B or G if that pattern is to be believed. Not that I had my heart broken by those guys in alphabetical order, but they're all close by.

So, as a way to cleanse myself and poke fun at myself while proving to people that yes, someone as amazing for me can be a bitch/ fall for jerks, I'm writing a letter for each of them. I can pretty much say that the ones for E and F would be very angsty because those two are the recent ones. C's would be a bit of mix while D's would explain this poem.

So, it might be a bit of a whiny, emo-ish collection of letters for some, so I'll put a warning at the top of each letters. The first one would be for E and I'll post it in few hours.


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