Thursday, May 30, 2024


It is 5.12am as I lie awake, thinking of Gaza and the horrific images I’ve seen and consumed of the genocide. I think of an ex-coworker from lululemon in Singapore, whom I was never super close to but whose words have usually pushed me onward. He said, “it’s not always going to be an easy time, so remember to be strong during the tough seasons.” In the past almost three years, I’ve definitely gone through bouts of homesickness and loneliness, severe anxiety whilst completing a seemingly insurmountable load of assignments near semestral deadlines, intense heartbreak during the ends of romantic relationships, but I cared, and I came out perhaps stronger on the other sides of all of those things. I became more independent, better at writing essays, a potentially more equipped partner for the next person I’d date. Now, I really don’t know what my next step is. Tens of thousands are dying, have died while I churn out another assignment that means nothing to me. Things are so meaningless it is the first time in my life I am taking antidepressants daily, as part of my supposedly regular routine. There is no worth in completing my education if it means I have left my humanity behind. I feel the same things as we all watch the horrors persist and our brains are further desensitized. Someone asks me if I think Taylor Swift is getting married this time. I do not care. I see seventy people have just died. Someone sends me a meme of a kitten. I love it and I laugh and I click the heart. I do not care. I have just seen a beheaded infant. My employers are asking me to do the things I’m paid to do, as if this report is worth more than the people that are dying. I do not care. I do not care. I do not care. My partner Garrett feels the pain of the world and wants to lessen it, he feels overwhelmed and crippled at how much pain there is. His default is sadness, while I default to anger and radicality. I want to bubble wrap all the people I care for while I go out and confront the madness. How dare you try to convince my loved ones, my sister and my partner and my best friend and all the people I care about, that there is something wrong with them for not wanting to work, for not wanting to go on, when there are people like Netanyahu giving orders for his army to do unspeakable inhumane things, and when those people in the army are going through real sickness and mass delusions and psychosis believing that they are in the right. I lie awake seething. While there are no true leaders on the side of the genocide, the revolution will be flooded with real leadership. We all just need to let ourselves be radicalized.

Saturday, May 18, 2024


Day 106: What are the news headlines today?
I don’t want to read them. 

Day 107: How do you think people describe you?
Brave, funny, smart.

Day 108: What is your most attractive quality?
The quality I find most attractive about myself is that I speak my mind, and I’m not afraid to say I need help, either.

Day 109: Train, car, or airplane?
Airplane, for getting me further. Train, for the views.

Day 110: What do you wish someone would hurry up and invent?
A time travel machine.

Day 111: What was the last big purchase you made?
The Eras Tour ticket in March 2023.

Day 112: What is the last thing you did before going to bed last night?
Check Instagram.

Day 113: Would you rather settle in or venture out?
Settle in, anyday. I am a homebody, through and through.

Day 114: What problem are you having trouble solving?
Financial issues whilst I’m still a student.

Day 115: What habit are you trying to break?
I probably have a minor phone addiction.

Day 116: Who is your best friend?
Lyssa, Alessia, Jeremy, Maggie, and increasingly, Garrett.

Day 117: Are you a saver or a spender?
As an international student, I’m forced to be a saver, although I have no savings. I have no disposable income to be spending.

Day 118: Is technology your friend or foe?
Both, probably. I love how convenient it has made my life, but I hate how dependent I am on it.

Day 119: What movie do you rave about?
La La Land.

Day 120: What food do you cook the most?
Butter chicken.

Day 121: What comforts you in the worst of times?
Being with my loved ones, eating ice cream, listening to Taylor Swift’s music.

Day 122: What household chore do you avoid?

Day 123: What natural talents do you have?
Writing, expressing my feelings. I don’t think either of them came naturally to me, I’ve practised for many years and I got really comfortable doing them.

Day 124: What are you saving your money for?
Probably to travel a little after I graduate.

Day 125: What question would you most like answered?
How do we stop climate change? How do we dismantle capitalism? How do we end all wars? They are all interrelated, and the answer to one will likely alleviate the others, too.

Day 126: If tomorrow were your last day on Earth, how would you spend it?
Go to the beach, eat all my favorite foods, call everyone to tell them I love them.

Day 127: What do you think will be different in your life next year?
I would have graduated in May next year and not be so dirt broke, hopefully.

Day 128: Have you ever witnessed something miraculous?
I thought the aurora borealis were pretty spectacular, and it was also on the midnight of turning into my birthday, so that was the loveliest treat. I am going back and answering this question belatedly, as I only saw the aurora on May 11, 2024.

Day 129: What gets better as you get older?
Sex/my comfort and ease at being the person I am.

Day 130: Who or what do you enjoy taking care of?
Myself, Garrett.

Day 131: Who inspires you?
Sara Kishawi, Art, Warren, Kaia.

Day 132: Whom do you most want to impress?
Art, and Warren.

Day 133: How well did you treat yourself today?
Pretty well. Hung out with Garrett and Jeremy at the Vancouver Public Library. Had homemade waffles with the works (fruits/syrup/whipped cream, etc) for Mothers’ Day brunch with Jeremy’s family. I lead a curious life indeed — Jeremy is my ex, and Garrett is my current partner, but dare I say they are both friends through me now?

Saturday, April 20, 2024


Taylor Swift has dropped a double album to commemorate her breakup with Joe Alwyn, and of course, I think it’s a fantastic album with great music. So Long, London, and Down Bad are a couple of my favorite tracks from it so far, although I’m still in the thick of my semester-end finals and I haven’t quite had the time to explore the 31 new tracks fully yet, and so my answers may change, a couple of weeks later. Five weeks ago, I met a man called Garrett for a first date in Vancouver. I stepped out of the Skytrain station to meet him, and at that moment, the sun was setting on the Vancouver skyline, so we saw the prettiest sight. It was so pretty that, within a few minutes, Jeremy had texted me to look at the sky. Garrett and I joked that we’d made the gorgeous scenery happen for the other person. We then walked around asking each other questions to get to know each other. On the way to have drinks and dinner, we found out that we had the same birthday, verifying by looking at the other person’s ID. After some mediocre buns and drinks, he got us ice cream, matcha for himself and carrot cake for me, although we shared both pretty equally. The ice cream was fantastic, but the banter felt much more comfortable. For the next two weeks, we called each other pretty much everyday, and then we had another date. On that date, he made some pretty good tacos (that I rated 8/10) and got me a tub of matcha ice-cream, on the lid of which he’d written “4 my penguin”, because penguins are his favorite animal. I met his roommates, a pretty sweet couple, before they left for a party, and then Garrett put on a little bit of Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour for us to watch, before we shared our life stories with each other. I stayed over at his place, and the next morning, we walked around the Mount Pleasant area. In keeping with our tradition, he got me a carrot cake cupcake, because I hadn’t had carrot cake in Canada (which is my favorite type of cake, I know, how uncool lol), and he was making up for lost time, maybe. He also got me an earl grey donut from Cartems, which I really liked, even though I’ve never really liked donuts very much. Since then, we’ve also been calling and FaceTiming, once, twice, three times a day, every day. We’re currently on FaceTime with each other while we’re studying together. We’re both going through our school finals in the next week or so, and then he’s coming over to Nanaimo to stay with me for half the week. He goes to therapy once a week, and is studying to be a therapist. Whenever we’ve run into things that may turn into issues, we talk things through very calmly and thoroughly, and we’ve said how safe we feel with each other that we’re able to bring things up to each other to talk about, instead of letting things sit and fester. I don’t know, it’s small things so far, and nothing major has happened, but the past five weeks have felt so pleasant and lovely and easy. So… We’ll see how things go.

Monday, April 15, 2024


Day 92: What is the last trick you fell for?
Alessia asked "why is the word 'gullible' written on our ceiling?" and I looked up. 

Day 93: What annoyed you or made you cringe today?
Forgetting that I had meetings scheduled.

Day 94: What scent makes you happiest?
Lavender, Chanel No. 5 EDP, Taylor Swift's Incredible Things are all scents that make me happy. I also love the smell of caramelizing onions. 

Day 95: What is the formula for success?
In this world? Be born rich.

Day 96: What is the last thing you searched for?
Love. I think I might have found it, too, although it might be early to tell. It's a lot like love right now.

Day 97: What did you forget to do today?
I forgot to bring my copy of Karl Marx's Selected Writings for Garrett.

Day 98: What surprised you today?
I had a donut I liked, from Cartems Donuts. I'm not usually the biggest fan of donuts, but Garrett got me an earl grey one. 

Day 99: What is the quickest way to your heart?
Caring about social justice issues.

Day 100: What is one thing you've never done?
Scuba dive.

Day 101: How soundly do you sleep?
I fall asleep pretty easily, but am quite a light sleeper and am sensitive to noise. 

Day 102: Whose phone number(s) do you know by heart?
Jeremy's. It's the easiest phone number to remember, tbh.

Day 103: Whose heart have you broken?
I have broken up with a few people but I don't know that I can say I broke their hearts.

Day 104: What was the last vacation you really enjoyed?
I think when I went back to Singapore in December 2022. So strange to think that going back to my home country now counts as a vacation for me.

Day 105: What is your mantra?
If you're not depressed, you're not paying attention.

Wednesday, April 3, 2024


Day 64: Who was the last person you talked to on the phone?
My family in Singapore.

Day 65: What are you most proud of?
That I'm still a good person who advocates for humanity even when life gets tough.

Day 66: What outfit would you wear every day if you could?
For comfort, a hoodie and sweatpants. For appearance, my pink suit.

Day 67: Do you feel blessed or cursed?
At this very moment, I think I lean more towards feeling blessed.

Day 68: What is your biggest fear?
Dying without having done everything I want to.

Day 69: What was the last courageous thing you did?
Run for Director-at-Large with the BCFS.

Day 70: Who always has your support?
Maybe Sara Kishawi.

Day 71: What friendship has grown deeper?
My friendship with Alessia.

Day 72: What is the last movie you went to see?
The Taylor Swift Eras Tour concert movie.

Day 73: In what position do you sleep best?
On my left, slightly curled up.

Day 74: On which topic do you consider yourself an expert?
Taylor Swift, maybe anti-capitalism - at least I'm more of an expert than the average person.

Day 75: What TV show always makes you laugh?
Parks and Rec.

Day 76: What is your dream car?
I don't have a dream car.

Day 77: What is your good luck charm?
I don't think I believe in one???

Day 78: If your life had a theme song, what would it be?
You Get What You Give by New Radicals.

Day 79: Appetizers, desserts, or both?
If I could have both, why would I pick one?

Day 80: What hasn't changed about you over the years?
How much of a romantic I am.

Day 81: What did you do exactly right today?
I cooked the right amount, for my meals today.

Day 82: What is on your bedside table right now?
A bedside lamp, my school course texts, a vibrator, Lush Twilight body spray.

Day 83: What makes you feel like a kid again?
Swinging on the swings, running and playing in heavy rain.

Day 84: Who is your mentor?
In different capacities for different aspects of life: Art, Warren, Kaia, Lauren.

Day 85: Who owes you an apology?
Probably the person who was trolling me with mean comments a few years ago, not that I'd expect one. And also my real dad. Also not expecting that one either.

Day 86: What is the last compliment you received?
Someone calling me exceptionally beautiful.

Day 87: Which year of your life has been the most enjoyable?
I believe it was 2012. I went to see Spring Awakening (one of my favorite musicals), Jason Mraz's concert, etc.

Day 88: How many cups of coffee did you drink today?

Day 89: What is your idea of a great evening out?
A really good movie, or a musical, or a stand-up comedy show, followed by a delicious late night supper.

Day 90: Truth or dare?
??? Who will dare me to do things??? Or ask me questions????

Day 91: City, suburbs, or country life - Which suits you best?
I think the suburbs? IDK, they all have their perks and disadvantages. I like all three for different purposes.

Friday, March 8, 2024


Day 50: When was the last time you were really angry?
Two weeks ago, at the statement the board made.

Day 51: On what do you spend way too much money?
My education.

Day 52: When was the last time you cried?
Probably when I was angry at the statement and all the different factors surrounding the situation.

Day 53: What do you see outside of your window?
My neighbors’ house behind a fence. 

Day 54: What struggle are you happy to have behind you?
Trying to reconcile religious faith and moral values (the values prevailed!).

Day 55: What promise have you kept?
I have so far managed to stick it out in school, making my family proud, despite all sorts of struggles.

Day 56: What is the first thing you did this morning?
I brushed my teeth.

Day 57: How famous would you like to be?
I’d like to be as famous as AOC, for doing similar things. 

Day 58: What are the top qualities of your perfect mate?
He is respectful, thoughtful, kind, generous, consistently affectionate, slightly naughty, leftist, a good communicator, goes to therapy, likes to cuddle, and has cats.

Day 59: When life gives you lemons, what do you do?
I’d probably start by crying about it, try to change it, talk about it at therapy. 

Day 60: When have you taken a leap of faith?
When I came to Canada for my studies, and when I ran for Women Students’ Rep at the Students’ Union for the first time.

Day 61: Who makes you feel appreciated?
Alessia, Leah, Maggie.

Day 62: What is your favourite day of the week?
Friday, because you can anticipate the weekend.

Day 63: What about your life is different than you expected it to be?
I didn’t really think I’d move and live so far away from my family, not until the last six to seven years of my life.


It is yet another weekend. You know what’s weird? I’ve been embroiled in so many politically-charged situations in the past few months or so. There are hush-hush whisperings about people and their political leanings, there have been suspicions about who did what and to whom, I’ve tried to learn who the “safe” professors are in school so that I know when I can do projects about things I really believe in, as opposed to pretending to care about meaningless, filler content. I’ve never liked to do this, the acts and airs, but recently I’ve been putting up a front in some professional situations, because apparently some people in advocacy aren’t really true advocates, more than they enjoy the comfortable positions that they’ve held for a long time. It sucks, and it makes me feel icky about myself, but then I did study politics, and I do intend to work somewhere in the political realm in future. Yuck, yuck, yuck. We’ve got about a month to go to the end of this semester and for summer break to start. I cannot fucking wait. This semester needs to die in a hellfire, as does Israel. 

Monday, February 19, 2024


Day 36: What memory makes you smile? 
I have two surefire memories for this. One is when I went home to Singapore in December 2022, and we surprised my grandma, because she thought I was coming home a week later. The other is when my sisters came to visit me in Canada in December 2021, and I pretended to eat a dirty churro stick that we’d dropped and picked up from the ground (because it was expensive). Both are in my “family” highlight on Instagram. :)

Day 37: What is your favorite restaurant?
In Singapore, Scaled, and Jaan. In Canada, I haven’t been able to afford eating at many restaurants to have a favorite, not yet. I’ve probably been to five restaurants here, and I wouldn’t go back to any of them (!!!).

Day 38: What person in your life is your polar opposite?
I don’t know, I don’t know that there could be such a person who’s a polar opposite of me, but my mom and I are very different in some ways, and my biological dad and I are also very different in some ways. I’m just quite different from my parents in many ways, but I know there are similar traits as well.

Day 39: What is one thing you believe to be true about love?
The right person will never make you feel like you’re too much for them.

Day 40: If you could rename yourself, what name would you choose?
I quite like Sarah Mei, so I wouldn’t choose to rename myself, but if I had to, maybe Naomi? It’s a pretty name.

Day 41: If you could live during any time period, which would you choose?
The 1920s.

Day 42: Who is the strongest person you know? 
Emotionally, Sara Kishawi. Physically, any one of the people whom I used to work with at lululemon in Singapore. Jaysen? Gino? All of them are strong and have their different strengths.

Day 43: What food are you craving right now?
Nyai’s sambal goreng.

Day 44: If you won a million dollars, what would you buy first?
A plane ticket back to Singapore to visit my family again.

Day 45: Who is your Valentine?
It was Kiyara, and we had a really good (friend) date, with really good food, and I’m so glad I’m getting closer with her.

Day 46: With whom did you have a meaningful conversation today?
No one, not today.

Day 47: What are you shy about?
Nothing, really, I’m not a very shy person.

Day 48: Which holiday do you most look forward to?
Is Halloween a holiday? I LOVE Halloween. I like dressing up and I think I’m good at it.

Day 49: Who could have been nicer to you today?
My friends came over and we had a nice, chill time, sharing gossip and watching Booksmart, so I had a pretty nice day. No one comes to mind.

Friday, February 16, 2024


It’s been two extremely long weeks. However, it’s the Friday before my reading week, so I’m finally able to breathe for a few days or so. Last week, one of the boards I sit on released a statement about the Gazan genocide that I didn’t agree with nor vote for. It didn’t call it a genocide nor call for a ceasefire. One of my favorite people on campus (the other man apart from my therapist Art), my Liberal Studies professor, Warren, read the statement and called it astonishingly vacuous, so I know I have the right opinion. However, I’ve been spending time with Sara, Katy, and Kiyara, all of whom are WOC who are not from Canada, so I’ve been feeling much more at ease and free to be myself, when I’m talking to them. Last Sunday, Taylor Swift flew from her Eras Tour show in Tokyo to the Super Bowl where her boyfriend Travis Kelce was playing. That was all anyone asked me about, whether I saw “my” Taylor Swift at the Super Bowl, while Rafah was being bombed by Israel. Taylor also gives no fucks about her climate emissions at all, so I’m kinda sick of her. I got myself a new poster to replace the one of her in my bedroom. However, will I still devotedly listen to her upcoming new album The Tortured Poets Department? Only time will tell. (I probably will.) I’m so sick of her. I wish I could say what I really feel about people like Warren, and Art. I love them both so very much. They are two white men whom I absolutely adore and wish I could be friends with forever. Perhaps I can, but it is unlikely. I also tend to hold onto any form of dynamic or relationship longer than I should, and you know what they say, you will always repeat a lesson until you learn it.

Sunday, February 4, 2024


Day 22: What is your favorite joke to tell?
I’m all for a two-state solution, but then how would we differentiate between the two Palestines?

Day 23: What is one thing in nature that moves you?
Bodies of water/walking barefooted on the ground or soil.

Day 24: What foods make you happiest?
Hotpot, ssambap, sushi.

Day 25: Which room in your home is your favorite?
My bedroom.

Day 26: What treasured object would you rescue from a fire?
I feel like I don’t treasure any material object enough to need to rescue it from a fire, but if I had to, then my iPad. 

Day 27: What country would you like to visit some day?
The answer to this question could never be exhaustive, but for the sake of answering, I’ll just say Greece.

Day 28: Who are the people in your life who really understand you?
Maggie, my sister Lyssa, Alessia.

Day 29: What could you never give up?
Speaking up for what I believe in.

Day 30: What song could you listen to over and over again?
All Too Well (10-minute version).

Day 31: Who are you worried about? 
My friend Jasmine, and also myself.

Day 32: What is one mistake you don’t regret making?
Not getting a degree earlier in my life.

Day 33: What is the most you would pay for a haircut?
If it’s just a haircut with no wash or other services, $30?

Day 34: What is the best part of your day?
Talking to Sara Kishawi about activism for Gaza.

Day 35: What relationship in your life do you wish you could improve?
The one I have with myself — I want to trust myself and my instincts more.

Sunday, January 21, 2024


This past weekend was the BC Federation of Students’ AGM. I spent it campaigning for a year-long position as a Director-at-Large. There were four Director-at-Large positions, with eight candidates vying for them.

On Saturday evening, we each made our speech contesting our case, then spent an hour in the room for the other Locals’ delegates to approach any of us and ask questions about whatever they wanted, pertaining to our candidacy. 

We were scattered all over the room, and I was asked questions like (list not exhaustive — I literally did not stop talking for one hour): how my being in the position could help the Federation’s relations with Indigenous communities; how I could improve the BCFS’ position on environmental or sustainability issues; (because I’d been the only candidate to bring up Gaza in my speech) how I’d deal with potentially an Israeli student feeling offended by my Palestine-geared advocacy; what kind of initiatives I’d push for if I received a position. 

I fielded these questions, one after another, as best and as authentically as I could. It was exhausting, I’d never felt like I had to talk about all the values I believed in and cared for, for all of an hour. I don’t even do that at therapy, during which I’m either laughing because I get to relax and let my guard down when I’m with my therapist, or I’m crying, for similar reasons. 

Nonetheless, I felt encouraged by all the questions, I knew the room was filled with 150 or so people who only wanted to make sure that the positions were filled by someone competent and up to the job, and I knew they, like me, were doing it because they cared. It might have been only an election of university students across BC, but I honestly think it was a positive situation because we’re all mostly mature enough to know of real-world issues, but not jaded enough to engage in mudslinging like in real-world politics. My seven candidates who ran for the position and I, we’re friends, and I knew we all wanted to do our best in the interest of students. 

Today, we received the results and I had won one of the four positions. Cole and Leah cheered the loudest and gave me cheek kisses when we found out. I could finally breathe deeply and fully. I was elated but what really filled my heart was when the other Local delegates congratulated me. 

They said things like they felt a good vibe coming from me when they talked to me, that they could trust me, that they never questioned that they would vote for me, that they were proud of me — and these were people who’d just met me for the first time! It warms my heart because doing activism is obviously a kind of work that can be draining. It requires that you focus on the problems and issues that exist in society, so that you can create awareness of and hopefully help to fix them. 

Most of the time, out in public, I’d have to explain what certain -isms mean, why some things aren’t cool nor acceptable, or why we should be doing more when we have the capacity to do more. When you care about one thing, you usually care about more and more, and burnout can be so real. 

In this room, though, I didn’t have to explain myself. They knew what issues exist in the world, they only wanted to know that I cared the way they did. I didn’t have to convince them of anything, except that I will eventually do the things I said I would. My favorite times are whenever I spend time with the BCFS because these people get me, they don’t make me feel like I’m too much or I care too much. So it meant a lot to me that they believe and had such faith in me.

I know it might not be the biggest deal but I’m truly grateful to be doing such work. I’m afforded an opportunity to be representing 170,000 post-secondary students across British Columbia, to do what I love and fulfills me. It gives me hope. Thank you all for creating an environment that’s allowed me to grow so much. I’m definitely gonna do my best for you.


Day 15: Who is the first person you thought about today?
I don’t remember, maybe Alessia.

Day 16: Who was especially kind to you today?
No one, not today.

Day 17: What job would you like to trade your job for this week?
I got my hair cut today and would love to try being a hairstylist/hairdresser. It would be so fun.

Day 18: What lie have you told recently?
I told my professor Michael Mackenzie that I would hand in my reflection note for participation marks, but I wasn’t really intending to, and I didn’t do it.

Day 19: What are you beginning to doubt?
I had a lengthy conversation with one of my political professors recently, and I’m beginning to doubt whether I should be working in government or a political party. She told me that I would have to lose parts of myself, and she advised me to stay true to myself instead.

Day 20: What is one thing you have learned about life?
That you can and will thrive if surrounded by the right people, in the right environment.

Day 21: How hard did you work today?
I didn’t have to work hard today, but I worked really hard the past three days.

Wednesday, January 17, 2024


Now I am stuck between my anger 
and the blame that I can't face 
And memories are somethin' 
even smoking weed does not replace 
And I am terrified of weather 
'cause I see you when it rains 
Doc told me to travel, but there's COVID on the planes

And I love Vermont, but it's the season of the sticks 
And I saw your mom, she forgot that I existed 
And it's half my fault, but I just like to play the victim 
I'll drink alcohol 'til my friends come home for Christmas
And I'll dream each night of some version of you 
That I might not have, but I did not lose 
Now you're tire tracks and one pair of shoes 
And I'm split in half, but that'll have to do 

So I thought that if I piled something good on all my bad
That I could cancel out the darkness I inherited from dad
No, I am no longer funny, 'cause I miss the way you laugh
You once called me forever, 
now you still can't call me back

Sunday, January 14, 2024


Here are my answers to Week 2 questions.

Day 8: What age do you feel?
I feel 28 in terms of maturity, and 82 in terms of how exhausted I am.

Day 9: What change do you want to make?
I want to be more independent and also be physically stronger.

Day 10: What is the last dream you remember?
I was on stage performing with Taylor Swift at her concert.

Day 11: Rate your happiness today on a scale of 1 to 10.
10 — I finally received my 2022 tax returns from Canada, LOL. Seven months after I filed it. $3300 to go towards my winter semester later this year. 

Day 12: What famous person would you like to meet?
I’d like to meet Taylor Swift. I’d ask her why she hasn’t spoken out about Gaza.

Day 13: Who in your life is most like you?
I think, for now, it’s Maggie? She’s been the person I’ve been to the Gaza marches with. She and I love just vegetating at the pool (mostly for the sauna room), we believe in many similar values and are soft-hearted, but also try our best to engage in strong advocacy.

Day 14: What color best describes your mood today?
I’m feeling happy and grateful for the past week today, so it would have to be pink, my favorite color.

Alessia and I got back from Vancouver this evening after the loveliest weekend. For Christmas, she had gifted me a studio session to do an awkward pose photoshoot, so we went to do it yesterday, and I believe we smashed it. We’d pre-planned some poses and we kept laughing through the half an hour. 

Today, we went to Dhuha’s housewarming party at her new place. She lives at Koala Court so the party was koala-themed and super cute. Her baby girl, Laila, was asleep for most of when we were there, but Dhu and her family provided so much good food. Alessia and I had sandwiches and pasta hors d’oeuvres and meat skewers, and those really good lemon square bars from Granville Island. We happened to sit at the dining table with Dhu’s younger sister and her two friends, they’re all grad students at UBC, so Dhu called us the students’ union/kids’ table, and it was so fun and enjoyable.

We’d brought a couple of tokens for the white elephant gift exchange, and I got some small gifts for Laila too, but when we left, Dhu had us each pick out a mug and fill it with some goodies for our door gifts. I left with a homely pink ceramic mug, filled with a belif eye cream, some artisanal hot chocolate, a lemon-lavender-vanilla soy candle (that’s burning in my room right now), a bath bomb and a lip balm, and Alessia got an original Beauty Blender (she checked hahaha), so we both left with much more than we came with. It was a lovely afternoon, and I’m always so glad to mingle with Singaporeans. When my semester quiets down, I’m gonna try to visit them again. From Dhu’s Instastories of her, I can see Laila definitely is turning out so bright and precious.

Sunday, January 7, 2024


Alessia and I did a thing, and we might do more of such a thing, if people like the thing.

Friday, January 5, 2024


I filled in the questions for the first week of the year from my new journal, and included Saturday’s and Sunday’s, because I don’t think my answers would change in the next two days. If they do, then I’ll edit them, I guess, but it’s unlikely. 

Day 1: What goal would you like to accomplish this year?
I would like to be able to drive/receive my Novice licence. I’ve been on my L, and I have lessons lined up. I have a good feeling about it, this summer I might be able to start driving on my N, and it will taste so sweet. 

Day 2: Who do you envy most? 
My cousin Hazwani. She’s my age, and we grew up together. She has a pretty decent life, she is married to a good guy and have a happy, cute marriage together. She has a stable job as a radiographer, that challenges her, and she also travels fairly often, either with her family members or her friends. She and I are very close, so sometimes I feel a little sad that I’m a few stages behind her in life, but I’m always happy that she’s happy.

Day 3: What is one thing you learned today? 
Today I went for the first Pilates lesson of my life. I wanted to do new things for the new year, and also the first/trial session was free, and so I signed up. It was challenging. However, the instructor is extremely knowledgeable about the human body, and the other people in the class were elderly, retired people so it gave me hope and encouragement that Pilates would get me to strengthen my core and age as gracefully and with as much dignity as possible. I also naturally don’t have the best posture, so all the different alignment exercises are so useful for me. 

Day 4: What is one thing you wish you had done differently today? 
I did everything the way I wanted to do today.

Day 5: What event or milestone are you looking forward to? 
I look forward to graduating university. On the one hand, I do enjoy learning, and I’m a great student. I feel like I could do it for ten more years. On the other hand, the international student tuition fees here are more than three times the domestic prices, so I’m ready to graduate and start earning some money so I can pay off my loans and travel a little bit. 

Day 6: If you were an animal, what animal would you be?
I would want to be a quokka, as they always seem so happy. 

Day 7: What is the best news you’ve received lately? 
That I received the Alexandro Malaspina award for excellent work in my studies, and it came with a $500 prize. The certificate was also dated December 13, 2023. It shouldn’t matter that December 13 is Taylor Swift’s birthday, but of course it does. It was her birthday, and she gave me a gift. ;)

Monday, January 1, 2024


During one of my therapy sessions in the past year, Art (also known as my Professor Dad) asked me for a motion that I could use as a self-soothing method, when I told him that sometimes I didn't have anyone around to ask for a hug or to comfort me. I had to think about it, but then I told him I guess I could bring my palm up to press against my chest, just around my sternum, to simulate the pressure that one would feel during a hug. Sometime in the last few weeks, my sister shared a video with me, that was of me crying at a kind gesture from a cousin of ours, before I'd left Singapore, before I'd ever stepped foot in Canada. In this video, I could be seen soothing myself by pressing my palm against my chest and rubbing it gently yet firmly. That was when I realised I'd been doing the thing before I even knew I was doing it for self-comfort. It was a genuine "huh, cool" moment. 

I ordered a journal for myself that should arrive soon, it's called One Question A Day. It's supposed to have 365 questions and you answer one per day, and compare your answers, year on year for five years. I don't know what the questions are yet, but I hope they're good, and I might update them here weekly, when I'm done answering them, depending on how good of prompts they are. Jeremy recently suggested that I begin to write more often. At first I thought, I write so much for school, I write essay assignments and exams and speeches, why would I write even more? But then I realised he was right. I used to love writing for myself, for fun, and I'd pretty much stopped, because I was too busy with school and work. I want to go back to writing more just for leisure and for the fuck of it, so I guess here I am, starting the new year in a way that I will try to be consistent with. 

Sunday, December 31, 2023


The past two months have been a hell of a wave to ride. I juggled four paying jobs with a full course load of school at one point, to earn enough for spring semester's tuition. I was at my behavioral intervention job, did babysitting for the two most adorable, precocious kids in the world, am assisting on a library research project, and I work for the Students' Union, still. To be honest, even with all that, I still managed to do pretty decently in uni. I got into a fellowship scheme for spring, which gives me a tiny stipend for books, and is actually a cross-faculty book club I have to be part of for the semester, so it's going to be even more work on my plate, but hell, if I have to be paid for something, it might as well be for reading books. I also won the Alexandro Malaspina Award for interdisciplinary excellence, which is easy for me, as someone taking a Political Studies Major and a Liberal Studies Minor. The latter award came with $500 cash, so now I have $7000 saved, of my $12,000 spring semester's tuition. And yes that's twelve grand for the next four months, half of which I don't have. People here/domestic students don't seem to really wrap their head around the number until I show them the invoice on the school's website. But you know, we'll see how things go, I guess. So anyway, despite doing decently well in school and work, the issue of the Palestinian genocide weighs heavily on my mind, possibly even more so, because both the country I come from, Singapore, as well as the country I reside in, Canada, are allied much more closely to Israel than they ever should be. I've been to pro-Palestine marches here in Nanaimo, but it's a very small community that attends, and it's disproportionately people of color as opposed to the majority white people who live here. It gives me a constant headache and perpetual existential crisis. I have a Palestine story highlights on my Instagram, if you should need it to be aware of why you should be pro-Palestine. If you're here, reading this, I assume you're already aligned somewhat to most of my beliefs, so I don't think you'd need them, but they're there. They're also resources for you to have conversations with the greater public if you ever wanted to do so. 

Saturday, October 7, 2023


This week, I went to Victoria, the capital of British Columbia and where the BC Parliamentary building is located. I went with the BCFS and other student constituent representatives to propose and push our lobby document initiatives. If you'd like me to explain our asks in person, lemme know, or if you'd like a copy of the document I could also send it to you, otherwise the campaign that we're lobbying for can be found here

We met with different MLAs and ministers across the political spectrum. It felt very much like I was stepping into AOC's shoes for a bit, and I was very thrilled to be there. We also sat in to watch a question period and it was very much like a catfight between the government and its opposition parties. 

When the week was over, we had one day left in Victoria, so Cole drove us to Beacon Hill Park, where we went to the petting farm, and the fall colors in the park made me fall in love with the city of Victoria. Nanaimo needs to up its game so much! It was a great week, but I am zonked out now, and I have to get back to my school coursework. The grind never ends, even though all I want is to live in a cottage and pick mushrooms all day.

Monday, October 2, 2023


Last week, Alessia and I were entertaining the idea of fostering a kitty in our apartment. Unfortunately, we asked our landlords and they said no, so that was a short-lived dream. Jeremy had won a pair of tickets to see a film as part of the Vancouver International Film Festival, and then we bought a couple more tickets, so I went over to Vancouver last weekend to watch some films. While staying over at Jer's, I also got to spend time with his cat, Barbara, and she's a Maine Coon, so that was nice. The first film we saw was La Chimeras. Both of us felt it was a little long and some of the scenes seemed disjointed at times, but overall I thought it was amusing and the story was a very interesting, intriguing, surprising one. I'd say I liked it and Jeremy gave it a 7/10. The other film was Mr. Dressup: The Magic of Make-Believe. I hadn't heard of Mr. Dressup prior to the film festival, but apparently he was the Canadian counterpart to Mister Rogers (they were both friends). It was lovely to watch the film and be introduced to a decades-long icon of Canadian children's entertainment, and to such a stellar personality. Ernie Coombs, who played Mr. Dressup, as well as the show he put on, were both so wholesome and heartwarming. I watched as the entire theatre of young and older adults who'd grown up with Mr. Dressup cried as they felt waves of nostalgia at seeing the father figure they'd grown up with. I clearly cried as well, because it was so good to know of such a hopeful persona and TV show, and also because I cry at nearly everything. Jeremy was moved to tears, which is a big deal, because he has trouble crying, and he gave the movie a 10/10. After that movie, Jer took me to MacLeod's Books, one of those old bookstores that are just overflowing with piles upon piles of books and nothing else, no merch and all that. I hadn't known before I stepped in, but apparently the place is a Vancouver institution and well-known among Vancouverites. Whilst browsing, I saw the book Ishmael, a book that I'd seen and read sometime during my travels in LA, and that I very much enjoyed. I made my way through the towering stacks and saw books that reminded me of my professors, one of which was The Peloponnesian War by Thucydides, a book that Mark Williams loves to quote from. Whilst I weaved through the tight corners, I heard the elder bookstore owner quiz his two younger employees. When one of them asked the elder where to categorise one of the books and why the author's name sounded so familiar, the older man said "he was the guy who came up with the word 'robot'", and the three of them kept going back and forth about other books and authors. I observed them, entranced, and I told them it was like watching an episode of Jeopardy. I asked the older man if he knew everything in the world, so he responded that he didn't, but when he was back in school way back then, his friends called him a walking encyclopedia. I told him I believed it. I don't really enjoy the dropping temperatures and the start of rainfall, but last weekend was one of those weekends where things felt enchanted and I felt lucky to be alive. It was just one of those days.

Thursday, June 8, 2023


I can’t believe it’s been three months since I went to see Taylor Swift live. A lot has changed, a lot has also stayed the same. 

In personal news, Adam is back in his hometown doing his part for wildland firefighting. He and I still message each other sometimes, though it’s never been anything dubious nor sexually misleading in the past three months. He’s a decent guy, and I think he and I both really liked each other in the day-to-day of things, so that makes things harder, of course. I still think about him when I want to talk about the big things, or the smallest of details in my day.

On the political front, I’ve been to a couple of BCFS meetings and skills workshop weekends. BCFS is the British Columbia Federation of Students, which is basically the union of students’ unions across universities in British Columbia. Two weekends ago, we spent a weekend at Loon Lake Lodge in Maple Ridge on the mainland, it was the perfect weather and I swam properly in Canadian waters for the first time! The week before that, the VIU Students’ Union met with Jagmeet Singh and Lisa Marie Barron, to speak about inflation and how it’s affecting affordability for students. It was surreal to be in a room with Jagmeet Singh, I remember watching his speeches from way back when in Singapore. And now I’m here, representing students, talking about my own experiences, doing the damn thing! I am getting closer to my VIUSU family, and I’m truly glad I’m spending this summer back in Nanaimo instead of working elsewhere.

Speaking of work, I got a job as a care worker for youths with behavioral disorders. One of them has ADHD, is severe on the spectrum disorder, has sensory processing disorder, and last week, because he couldn’t go out for a drive (it’s one of his regulatory activities and we were out of gas), he smashed a window in with his head. It was a lot to deal with, but he’s not very cognisant of things, especially not of fear and danger. I’ve met my therapist Art since then, and it’s interesting to unpack things from my job with him. I wouldn’t have thought I’d do exceptionally well with a high-stress job, but with my kids, it’s like I’m a fly-on-the-wall observing them and their inability to recognise that despite the enormity of their feelings, certain things are simply not urgent in the grand scheme of things. It’s a good lesson to apply for myself.

Summer is lovely, and I guess I’m right where I’ve always been.

Saturday, December 31, 2022


2022 was a mixed bag, as a year usually is. It was the first complete year I lived on my own, in a brand new country, so I kept reminding myself to live in the moment, and to count the moments. I ran into many unexpected infuriating and upsetting incidents that unsettled me, because I was still building new support systems while trying to maintain the ones from my home country. Nevertheless, I experienced so many wonderful moments, that on the whole, 2022 was a win for me. I explored nature in Haida Gwaii, laughed uproariously with a stellar character and was mesmerised by all the things he taught me while we were literally cut off from the rest of the world. I moved into an apartment with a woman, who’s equal parts mother, sister and friend, she cheers me up when I’m bogged down by life and capitalism, and we also watch raunchy shows on Netflix together because, well, sex is great, what can I say? I met a classmate whom I remembered and who remembered me from when I took online classes whilst stuck in Singapore, circa Covid times. We began studying together in the library, then moved on to driving to get groceries together. In the two weeks before I left to come back to Singapore, it was always his hand I was holding. Even when we were at the university’s board of governors’ meeting, appealing so they wouldn’t raise international tuition fees at a higher rate than domestic fees, for which he had no personal stake in attending, he was still seated next to me, holding my hand through all of two hours, on the day of our exam paper. My favourite professor from freshman year told me after I’d done a cohort presentation on St. Augustine’s Confessions, that she missed me and that I have an “infectious joy”. I came home to my actual family and chosen family members doting on me, gifting me little sums of cash and food I’d been craving. Overall, I wouldn’t change a thing, and I look forward to more, in 2023.

Wednesday, December 14, 2022


This paper aims to reimagine social relations in a society where private property has been abolished, based on a close reading of The Communist Manifesto as written by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. For this paper, we will be making reference to the pages of the course readings packet, which includes the Manifesto.

Marx and Engels write that under capitalism, proletarians essentially live and exist in constant survival mode. This is first exemplified in the passage (132) where the proletariat is described as “a class of labourers, who live only so long as they find work… labourers, who must sell themselves piece-meal, are a commodity…” They also illustrate the very real and common day-to-day living scenario (133) in which “no sooner is the exploitation of the labourer by the manufacturer, so far at an end, that he receives his wages in cash, than he is set upon by the other portions of the bourgeoisie, the landlord, the shopkeeper, the pawnbroker, etc.” Another prime example of this basic survival mode of existence is portrayed (134) in “the growing competition among the bourgeois, and the resulting commercial crises, make the wages of the workers ever more fluctuating. The unceasing improvement of machinery, ever more rapidly developing, makes their livelihood more and more precarious.”

Given the three examples above, one would be right to conclude that under capitalism, working-class labourers embody a precarious sort of existence, in which they are unable to forecast what their life could look like in a month, let alone a year later or longer. Such conditions are not conducive to dating and building relationships, nor for a traditional family nucleus, as the time required for all working-class people to sustain themselves on minimal wages, essentially means a lack of time for nurturing interpersonal relationships, or at least makes it significantly more challenging to do so. Members of the proletariat more often than not, even observably so in current society, lack the capacity to give of themselves to any other pursuit when their brains are focused on procuring basic necessities to ensure their own survival.

In direct opposition to capitalism, with the abolition of private property, everyone would then be a working and functional member of society. Workers would be reaping the fruits of their own labour, and not a single bit of their labour can be exploited to contribute to anyone else’s capital, and the idea of capital would be abolished. All that time that a proletarian had previously spent at work, only for the bourgeois class to squeeze and reap from their labour and profits, now turns into time that people can spend with their families, friends, and anyone they desired. What currently exists as high rates of isolation and a lingering sense of mistrust will be replaced with healthier and stronger relationships in community, as instead of perpetually experiencing the unending stressors of life in capitalist society, one can then feel like there is much value in spending time on building relationships, without having to consider the opportunity cost of that period of time.

Marx and Engels also expound on the idea (135) that the “proletarian is without property; his relation to his wife and children has no longer anything in common with the bourgeois family-relations; modern industrial labour… has stripped him of every trace of national character. Law, morality, religion, are to him so many bourgeois prejudices, behind which lurk in ambush as many bourgeois interests.” This can also be seen (135) in “The proletarians… have nothing of their own to secure and to fortify; their mission is to destroy all previous securities for, and insurances of, individual property.” This paper explores this idea in terms of housing, which is a basic human right that everyone deserves and should be able to afford. Unfortunately, in a statistic that is sadly needless to bring up, only 25% of young Canadians would be able to afford buying a home. The longer capitalism is allowed to happen, the worse this situation deteriorates. Families require basic security before they can thrive, which begin with a foundation of having a roof over their heads. In current times, the lack of property strips away the right to having healthy and happy families, from the proletariat.

By contrast, in a world without private property, all people who benefit from private ownership, such as landlords and hyper-rich building owners who buy out residential developments with no real need of living space would no longer be able to do so. Instead, people who want to start families and have children may feel much freer and inclined to do so. There is much more security that people can provide each other in terms of married life and family life, without the threat of your home being removed from you.

In another line of thought, Marx and Engels elucidate that within capitalism, proletarians are only able to have surface-level relationships. One such example (132) is found in “owing to the extensive use of machinery and to division of labour, the work of the proletarians has lost all individual character, and consequently, all charm for the workman. He becomes an appendage of the machine.” The workman seems to have less, if any, of an identity, because he is accustomed to his work having lost all charm, and as he has been shown to spend more and more time at work, this reflects a lack of depth of character to the proletarian. When workers have no access to time for exploring their real desires and likes, the relationships they form will then be on a superficial level, as they are not even completely aware of who they are as people. These surface-level relationships can happen in all the forms, whether it is a romantic courtship, or even in terms of friendship. The proletarian would not be able to develop sincere friendships as none of them can build real connections.

This is fairly distinguishable from the scenario that we can imagine if private property were to be abolished. In our current state of extremely high productivity, and if all labourers are not shackled down producing capital for the bourgeoisie, these former labourers can also enjoy the fruits of their own labour. They would have the time and independence to explore all the things that pique their curiosity in the world, they will be closer to their real and natural souls, and they will know better what they like and dislike. From there, they would all be equipped with a better knowledge of whether their romantic or platonic interests are healthy, genuine, and deep, instead of based on superficial and insignificant things, simply due to ignorance. Marx and Engels also highlight the difference (138) that “in bourgeois society, living labour is but a means to increase accumulated labour. In Communist society, accumulated labour is but a means to widen, to enrich, to promote the existence of the labourer.”

Another visible feature of capitalism that Marx and Engels heavily criticise is the presence and promotion of hypercompetition and hyperindividualism. One such example is when they write (140) that the bourgeois “has not even a suspicion that the real point is to do away with the status of women as mere instruments of production.” In today’s society, many liberal capitalists are under the impression that having more women business owners is something to be celebrated, and we toast to the idea of “girlboss queens”, who seem to “have it all.” However, whilst these successful businesswomen may have broken through some form of glass ceiling, it also emphasises the idea that everyone should necessarily work so hard. It pretends that if everybody competed with each other, it would be to everyone’s benefit as it promotes “innovation”, instead of hyperindividualism. In Communism, because all class struggle is resolved, all oppression would be non-existent, and women will no longer have to compete with men to prove themselves.

On the final point, Marx and Engels also denounce the imperialist cultures of extraction and exploitation that are commonplace within capitalism. The first passage in which they shed light on this (130) is in, “all old-established national industries have been destroyed or are daily being destroyed. They are dislodged by new industries, whose introduction becomes a life and death question for all civilised nations, by industries that no longer work up indigenous raw material, but raw material drawn from the remotest zones.” Another example (129) of this is, “It has resolved personal worth into exchange value. In one word, for exploitation… naked, shameless, direct, brutal exploitation.” The final nail in the coffin (131) is found in, “Subjection of Nature’s forces to man, machinery, application of chemistry to industry and agriculture.”

We believe that Marx and Engels may have looked badly upon the extraction and exploitation of natural resources, as the daily occurrence of it might be internalised by everyone in society, whether proletariat or bourgeoisie. When one is so accustomed to exploitation being naturalised and normalised, perhaps that is a model for interpersonal relations that take place in capitalist society. Marx and Engels did believe that all things are materialist, and so as people observe behaviours in society, we might be inclined to act and think in the same way, and believe that it is justified to be exploitative even in interpersonal relationships.

To contrast with this idea, in a Communist society, where there is no competition, no class struggle, no need for hyperextraction and exploitation of finite resources in nature, people would emulate such behaviours in their dealings with one another. There would be more mutual respect, and at the very least, a core belief that everybody has inherent worth beyond what they can produce and contribute to someone else’s capital.

Saturday, September 24, 2022


I’ve been back in society for exactly a month. I moved to this room three weeks ago and I really like it here, I might post photos here when it’s all furnished. I’m waiting for a poster to be delivered (it’s of Taylor Swift, obviously). It’s a new house in a relatively new neighborhood. We’re further away from school but I live with Alessia and she’s an amazing roommate to have. I’ve been overwhelmed by school and other things. Classes actually get progressively tougher the longer you go through your education, who woulda thunk?? I’m also part of Students’ Union and the university senate so I’m trying my best to balance all my responsibilities equally well. I felt like Instagram was not helping, I’m a sociable person but sometimes I think I give away a lot of attention and energy for absolutely no justifiable reason. I don’t want random people to have access to my person without it also nourishing me as a person. I’m trying to limit my use of Instagram so call me, beep me, if you wanna reach me! If we’re friends, you should already have my cell number or just ask and I’ll give it to you. Alright, I’m off to read some school texts and do some work. See ya on the flip side.

Monday, May 23, 2022


I've been in Haida Gwaii since Friday. I've fed a wild deer (got lots of responses on Instagram!) and gone fishing once. The day we came into the island, I got a little queasy on the boat because I wasn't dressed well, it was cold and it had been a long day. Yesterday we went out fishing, and the guide put on loud music, I was dressed properly, and every time we caught a wave it felt like I could have been wakeboarding. My friend Dani caught a salmon, and I saw it from when it was alive and struggling, to it being fileted and sealed in a plastic package. Fishing, I can do without, but the boat rides, man, the boat rides make me feel like I'm living my best life. I'll be working at West Coast Fishing Club, and my long play is to get one of the guests to adopt me. If they can afford a 3-day vacation at 8K CAD, I don't think my tuition would be such a big issue for them, right? The whole lodge feels like it's working together, the guides with their songs and fishing knowledge, right down to us ladies serving at the restaurant. Today I helped my boss and formatted the menu for the restaurant that I'll be serving at. It sounds delicious, so I'm looking forward to tasting bits and pieces. The owner of the lodge brought his dogs down to the island, but I haven't seen them. Apparently the owner of Lush Canada will be here for a stay this season, and I love Lush, as a brand, still. She was here for a previous season and after she left, she sent lots of Lush products to the fishing lodge for our staff, so I hope she does it again this year. I LOVE LUSH PRODUCTS!!!!!!! Also, I'm a whore for free things, because I'm poor. When I get a rich person to adopt me, all I'll do is redistribute the money channelled to me, after paying for tuition. I cannot believe people have the money to drop on a three-day fishing vacation, that is also the cost of my one semester/three months of tuition. This world makes no sense to me. 

Tuesday, May 17, 2022


Sometimes you don’t learn a lesson unless and until it is too late. So you lay in bed, breathing slowly, through your mouth, because your nose is clogged with snot. It doesn’t get easier, but apparently you learn to handle things better. Apparently. You tell yourself, think of the worst thing that’s ever happened in your life. That’s easy, it was when I was pregnant and had a miscarriage and fell out with my mother and was depressed. I cried through an entire train journey in Singapore, bawled, wept, and a lady came up to me with an entire pack of tissue paper, telling me that whatever it was, I would get through it. I did. But it doesn’t get easier. Never will. The pain and hurt you go through, maybe it is proportional to the pain and hurt you have caused another to go through, so you sit with it, sit with the ache and emptiness in the lower part of your belly. Breathe into it, isn’t that what your meditation app tells you to do? So you breathe. You think of Taylor Swift. Why do you think of Taylor Swift? You don’t know, but you do. Why does it take forever to know what love is, and no time at all to lose it? On my birthday, I wished to ease my way in this capitalist world, but perhaps I should have wished for emotional maturity and peace instead. Maybe I do not know what I’m sorely lacking in. 

Monday, May 16, 2022



My sister is figuring out her finances and affording life in Singapore, so we both commiserated with each other for being peasants.

Peasants earning peanuts eating peanuts who turn out more peasants. If you don't get that, it's okay, neither does anyone else.

Friday, May 13, 2022


Last week, I was in New York. I went with Jeremy, I used my flight credit to get us the flights there, and Tina was away for the first bit of our trip, and stayed at her boyfriend Cesar's place when she got back, so she let us stay in her apartment. Jeremy picked up the tab for all our other expenses.

New York City was... a trip. Because we had only one week there, I tried to cram as many things as I could for Jeremy's sake, who had never been. When we arrived, we had a boo-boo with unlocking Tina's apartment door, and so we had to call the locksmith at midnight. I have now learned that lesson for all future locks, for the rest of my lifetime.

However, when we finally got in, we found that Tina had prepared some stuff on the kitchen table. She had folded some origami, made some doodles of us, and given me a disposable camera for my trip.

Before we'd arrived, Tina kept saying she hoped I'd like her place. I hadn't been there before because she'd been living with her ex the last time I was in NYC, but the moment we got in, I knew that no matter what happened on the trip, I'd enjoy being in her apartment. It was just the right size of an apartment I'd like for myself, small but for a simple, contained life. It was decorated the way Tina would decorate it, and as she's one of my best friends, I clearly liked her aesthetic. There was a bit of romance, a lot of nerdy, some quirky. I felt her vibe in there and I felt at home.

Jeremy and I started our trip with a karaoke session at Sing Sing Avenue A, where our bartender Amy was the loveliest. It was the first time, when we asked for her favorite music, Jeremy and I had ever heard anyone say "I don't listen to music, I hate it," because Amy works at the karaoke place. I suppose it kinda made sense that she doesn't wanna listen to any version of music after spending major portions of her week having to listen to people butcher all the songs.

During most of the week, the weather was still rainy and cold, sometimes even colder than Vancouver because the wind was stronger there than in Vancouver for some reason. However, on one of the milder-weather days, we took a walk in Prospect Park and Brooklyn Botanic Garden, and I was treated to a vision of the pinkest cherry blossom trees. Jeremy is from Vancouver where they have the same thing, so it wasn't as much of a treat for him as it was for me.

The lady was telling her child that ducks have webbed feet, so I heard him repeating "webbed feet" very slowly and tentatively, it was so cute. I don't know that he even understood what webbed feet mean. It was such a precious moment for me to have witnessed, and I'm amazed that it happens all the time when you're raising a child! 

(the color contrast in photos is 'cos some were taken with our phones and some were developed with the disposable camera from Tina!)

I enjoyed that day very much. Jeremy got me snacking bacon from Dunkin Donuts, and at first I was like, why the fuck did you get me snacking bacon from Dunkin Donuts, of all things???? But lo and behold, it was the best bacon I'd ever had in my life??? It was moist and like a little bit sweet, like they'd seasoned it with honey or syrup or something, and had the right amount of salt and pepper, and it was from DUNKIN DONUTS, so maybe I was just hungry, and Jeremy knew it better than I did.

The next day, we were due to watch Hadestown, a musical that one of Jeremy's work friends had told us to watch. I was wearing a vintage dress and to match me, Jeremy had packed a suit. He didn't have comfortable dress shoes, though, so he'd planned to get them the morning of the musical before meeting me back at the apartment to set off from there. The bus back from the shoe store was delayed, so Jeremy was late.

On the way to the theatre, I was stewing in my anger on the train, because we were rushing for a musical, and I knew we would miss a little of it, and it wasn't the first time Jeremy's ADHD had messed up the day on our trip. When we got to the theatre, I was positively having a breakdown, and when Jeremy held the small of my back to calm me, I actually shrieked "don't touch me!" but it was during the second song of Hadestown, so no one else heard me, besides him and myself.

I have issues with emotional regulation and containing my anger, so that was definitely one of the lowest points on our trip. Whilst I got immersed in the first act of Hadestown, Jeremy was so taken aback he couldn't focus on the show. That was a terrible mistake, because Hadestown was amazing and one of my new favorite musicals (it's romantic AND about anti-capitalism, what in all fucks and HOW did I not write it????!!!!), and I wish I hadn't robbed Jeremy of the experience. 

When we talked about it later in the week, I asked Jeremy if he would take his medication whilst he spent time with me, so that he could be a little more functional, but he doesn't like them because apparently ADHD meds all cause stress on the heart, which means ageing faster. So it's a complete stalemate, because either Jeremy ages faster, or he lives with his ADHD symptoms and I'm constantly stressed, causing me to age faster. It also frustrates me that I know I have flaws with my emotional volatility and am seeking help for it with therapy, but he doesn't seem to do much for his ADHD.

He does the weirdest things like absolutely needing to buy dress shoes to match an outfit for one day, apparently ADHD causes you to prioritise things in ways I don't understand??? I had seven different outfits for the week, but I wore my low-cut sneakers with all of them, even the vintage dress, because style is what you make of it, and you don't have to be so rigid about it? Like, which stuck-up rich white person even made the rules and why do I have to follow them? Who says you need to wear dress shoes with a suit??? Even though I wore mismatched sneakers with all my outfits, I still got compliments on each of them??? Because I know I'm stylish????? 

Anyway. On one of the days, we went to The Met. I'd told Jeremy he would love the museum, and indeed he did. He took five hundred and thirty-something photos and videos, and he only stopped because his phone died. I don't have much in the way of photographic evidence to put up here, but they're all on my Instagram story highlights. Of the maybe five (lololol) museums I've been to, The Met is absolutely, undeniably my favorite. It's got such a fantastic collection.

On Thursday, we went to Harlem for the jazz museum. 

We went to a few jazz shows and jazz clubs because Jeremy is starting his degree in jazz this fall. I have videos of those, again on Instagram. I don't really get jazz, but I think it's lovely to see Jeremy enjoying it, and of course it's easy to appreciate talented musicians.

On Friday, we finally met Tina.

I always say I love the fact that I have two kinda elder sisters, Tina and my cousin, Hazwani. I call them both Kakak, which means elder sister in Malay. I'm kakak to so many, so it's nice when I'm the baby. Because I'm THE REAL BABY.

I had gotten tickets for Jeremy and I, and Tina and Cesar for a show at Caveat, and the show was done by Depths of Wikipedia.

On the way there, Jeremy was curious as to the nature of the show, which I didn't know, because I like to go in to things blind and be surprised. I was slightly worried the show would be a flop because I didn't know anything about it, but it was hilarious and fun and entertaining and engaging. Jeremy, Cesar and Tina all really got into it, and I'm so glad we got a good pick of a show! If you're ever in NYC, go to Caveat, and I hope you get a lovely game/show as well, though they usually do have an awesome selection.

My favorite parts of this trip were the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, watching Hadestown, staying in Tina's apartment, The Met, and Caveat.

When we got back, Jeremy and I had a serious conversation, and we broke up. It was funny (not haha funny, more like uncanny funny), it all happened in the lead-up to/through/after my birthday. Jeremy had gotten me a small strawberry shortcake to have myself, and I blew the candles on it, and through it all, we knew we might not be spending much more time together, so I was happy on my birthday, but I was also so sad.

but you keep my old scarf
from that very first week
'cos it reminds you of innocence
and it smells like me,
you can't get rid of it
'cos you remember it all too well

'cos there we are again 
when I loved you so

Anyway. Yesterday I was back in Nanaimo, and I met Marcus for lunch. He asked me out to lunch so we could have a send-off before I leave for my summer job in Haida Gwaii. We talked about Ukraine and Hong Kong, and his plans for school, and New York, and Hadestown, and I find that when I'm with Marcus, it's so easy and chill and comfortable. I always feel strange meeting Marcus, I clearly like him more than a friend, and I'm trying my best not to be that person who's like "I'll be friends with him until he likes me more," because clearly that's gross and creepy. I want to be friends with him, but I've always had trouble making the distinction between platonic and romantic, once I've crossed the line. 

Jeremy says he'd like to be friends in future, when I'm able to do so, but I obviously have had trouble with this all through my life. I told Jeremy I do the same thing even with Joey, and every man I've ever had romantic feelings for. I'm just a girl with trauma and am trying my best, and staying friends with people I like so much, confuses the hell out of me. I like Jeremy and Marcus and Joey and Ben and why do I have to choose?!?!! I like them all 'cos they all have different appeals, and I have all the feelings.

Send fucken help, man. I need all the help.