BONNE ANNEE! 2011!

4 comments

So yeah. It's 7.30am on 31 December 2010 in NZ. And I thought I'd do this now, because I have nothing better to do. So... Happy New Years! Early, yes. Maybe I'll leave this til actual new years to post so that it's not randomly at the end of my december archives...

This year's been an... interesting one. Went back to read last years new years post and I remember it clearly as if it were yesterday. I find it funny how the lantern came down after it went up, I remember distinctly thinking that it was a bad omen. Tbh it was kinda. This year wasn't that great for me. So much depressing shit happened, but I'm really thankful that I still have some really close friends who I know will stick by me no matter what happens. There have been times this year where I felt really alone, like I couldn't talk to anyone or trust anyone. But I DO have people who are willing to help me out in those times, I know that now :) I owe them all so much. And maybe I'm still not particularly mature, or independent, and I complain a lot, and I'm whiny and all of those things, and sometimes I don't understand why anyone would put up with me, but I'm so glad that they do. So to those people who love me unconditionally, who love me even at times where I hate myself, thank you so much...

Back to last years NYRs? Let's see how I did...

1) Do well on your SATs. I expect at least a 2200. Retake as many times as necessary. -- Done and dusted, first time's the charm :)
2) Concentrate on school! -- I guess we will have to wait for NCEA results to come out. If I get another A, I swear I'll... ... yeah I'll send it back for reconsideration. Maybe even Ms.
3) Don't ignore your friends and social life either! -- wow I ask so much balance of myself. I think at times this year it's been hard for me to go out but nonetheless I try to take time for my friends.
4) Make the most of all the opportunities you've got in 6th form -- ugh... I hope I did this???
5) Mature!!! Know when and how to handle different situations well etc. -- I think this happened. I went through a lot of weird situations this year haha. Don't know if I handled them well or not though @@
6) Get more fit hahahaa -- .........FAILLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL
7) Be more independent :] -- not sure, probably a bit more independent haha. natural part of growing up? :)
8) GET ENOUGH SLEEP -- YES :) most of the time I have gotten enough sleep. to the point where I was not jetlagged at all when I came to France :D yayyy for sleep

Man I just completely forgot to finish this post, so I will do it now. Probably says that it's posted at 12am on jan 2 but it's ACTUALLY new years here kk :)

SO! 2011 NYRs!
1) Make this year much much better than 2010
2) Become more open :)
3) Do things I want to do, not things I feel obligated to do
4) Push boundaries -- both my own and external boundaries
5) Dedicate myself to the things I love 120%
6) Complain less
7) Get more fit. Because I didn't do it last year. ):
8) Have more reasons to smile than frown :)

the bowling alley

3 comments

A short story. Based on a dream I had a few nights ago :)
also I went to the eiffel tower today. whatever though, right?

-----------------

I joined the bowling club when I was 16 years old. I had nothing to do last summer, and I didn't really want to get a job so I told my parents that I'd take up a sport. Granted, I'm not too keen on getting sweaty for the sake of some points, so I took up bowling since it seemed fun and not too stressful... Apparently I was wrong.

Everything was going pretty normal. I was with a few other kids my age who were just starting out as well. Some of them were awful -- honestly I still have no idea how it's even possible for someone to aim so perfectly into the gutter each and every time, but the majority of everyone else was on about the same level. After the end of our second week together, our coach, who was a pretty blonde lady called Dana, told us about weekend games if anyone wanted to come and play. You could tell that nobody was really interested; the life of a teenager revolves around partying in the weekends after all. As I was packing up to leave though, she came up to me and passed me a piece of paper.

"I expect to see you there", she winked.

"Wait... I'm pretty busy in the weekends though", I replied nervously.

"Oh no, it's not about that. Those weekend games are rubbish. Just look at the form and see you there", she spoke quickly, without really looking at me.

I unfolded the note and saw that it had just an address and a time -- 7.30pm tonight. I thought that I might as well check it out since I had nothing else to do... and so began my year of chaos.


Bowling 15's by ggarfield

The address, as it turned out, led to a back alley cafe that was extremely run down and appeared to be empty. Upon arriving though, Dana came out of the door and quickly whisked me inside, looking around cautiously. I seriously thought I'd become part of some underworld drug deal at that point, but the truth was something you couldn't have imagined -- a set of stairs led down from behind the counter of the cafe into the most luxurious bowling alley I had ever seen. You might see it one day -- if in fact you count being blinded by neon lights and deafened by the loud booming coming from the DJ across the room as seeing anything at all.

I looked around. An old man who looked like he was a walking skeleton picked up a transparent bowling ball and slid it down the track effortlessly -- strike. That was Roger, as I'd later learn. A brunette girl who looked even younger than myself looked on, sucking on a lollipop, juggling another transparent ball between her hands -- Roger's grand-niece Cathy. The unbeatable team, apparently. I choked when Dana told me that their balls were made from reinforced glass -- solid, perfect, invisible.

Then there was the confident looking Japanese man in his 20s, sporting a shaggy haircut and italian leather dress shoes at a bowling alley, counting a huge wad of money. That was Takuya, who as I'd later learn, loved to talk about his brother. However, his descriptions of this so-called brother ranged from "he's the scariest guy you'll ever meet in the yakuza" to "ahh, he's so little and cute, you know he just learned to talk the other week, and now he can say TAKA, TAKA!" This was not at all aided by the fact that every time we met this brother he seemed to shapeshift -- from a quiet 14 year old boy to a 26 year old female singer-slash-model, from a grumpy middle aged man to an overly friendly golden labrador. A year later now, I'm doubting that he even has any siblings. As for his bowling, he throws the best curve shots anyone has ever seen -- a definite advantage in the ridiculous obstacle course games we have to play...

And me? You may already have guessed (although perhaps not believed), but I'd been invited into this exclusive elite bowling team. Apparently, I had 'potential'. This initially scared the shit out of me because I'd only been bowling for about two weeks. Gradually, I grew to enjoy it. Love it, even. Every month, we play a game for money with another team. Usually the winnings are around a few thousand bucks for each player, and although we've lost some, I've definitely made a profit. I gave up a lot to bowl, and I feel like I've discovered something I have a passion for, for the first time in my life. I guess I'm just telling you about all this so that when I miss this next shot my story will live on somehow -- because once I fail this my team's gonna kill me.

I'm faced with a short vertical wall going down the middle of my lane, exactly cutting half the pins off from the other. The objective is to throw the ball so that it knocks down all the pins on one side of the wall, then hit the gutter so hard that it would travel a bit up the side of the lane, come down either onto the wall or over it, and knock down the other half of the pins. And I have a nasty feeling that it's harder in practice than in theory...

The bet on this game is $10 000 per player. I only have about $6 000 in my bank account at the moment. I think everyone else in my team can pay up their share, but they'll kill me for making them lose 10 grand.

I exhale, close my eyes and watch the shadows of the neon lights light up my eyelids. After an eternity, I open them again, wishing that my heart knocking against my ribs were the ball knocking against the bowling pins. The weight of the solid sphere in my left hand seems to double as I wished the earth would come up to swallow me whole. I inhale slowly, take my step forward... and let go.

days with friends :)

0 comments

Well in the last 2 days I met up with friends from school, which was really nice cuz I got to speak english again haha. Yesterday we went to Musee de l'Armee, where I didn't understand much since I don't do history, but the exhibitions were cool I guess. Then today we went to the opera, gallerie lafayette and champs elysses/saw the arc de triomphe. It was pretty tiring haha, lots of walking.



So like, picking up just about anything in the luxury section is a bit scary because you see pricetags upwards of 1k euros quite frequently... saw a 3k euro leather jacket today as well. omg rich people... one day I'll be able to afford stuff there eh :P and most of the shoes don't have pricetags. As olivier said, if you have to ask for the price, you probably shouldn't be shopping there... @_@

ALSO, THIS:


ITS A CHOCOLATE FOUNTAINNNNN so cool :)

Between lafayette and champs elysses we decided to look for a nice cheap cafe to have a hot chocolate at because we wanted to go when it was dark so we could see the lights. Felicity had this idea that we would take the metro to a random station and then get off, because it was unlikely to be near any big tourist attractions so they would be cheaper. Evidently we chose the wrong stop because we ended up spending an hour going around in a huge circle looking for a cheap cafe but hot chocolates were all upwards of 4euros (about 8bucks nzd)... also I got stuck between the doors of the metro at chatelet ): second time that's happened now, happened once in the usa as well sigh. I'm just nooooob...

also spent ages going around banks trying to get change for me 500 euros but they refuse to deal with me because I don't have an account at their bank. siiiigh, I also tried going to the currency exchange but I have to convert to another currency and then convert back, and lose some money in the process =__= so I still have the money problem. I'm running out of emergency money too ): ahhhhh why dad whyyyy...



champs elysses at night is sooo pretty at xmas. the lights are like *___* even though I was so tired when I got there I was happy because the trees were so sparkly :)

MERRY CHRISTMASSSS

3 comments

23rd december -- ~10pm

OMFG I am tired. Blanche and 2 of her second cousins are in another room watching a movie (Tellement Proches, it's quite funny, although I think I only understood about 30% of what is said lol) but I decided to come back and go to sleep, except then I washed my hair and now I have to wait for it to dry before I can go to sleep.

Today we went to the town of Rouen in Normandy, where the famous cathedral is. It's sooooo big and pretty :O I probably won't have any photos at the time of posting because I am lazy and tired. Wikipedia it? We also visited the place where Joan of Arc was burnt at the stake. Now there's a very modern looking church there shaped like an odd mushroom and some christmas market stalls. It's weird to think that something of such historical importance happened at that place where you are at that very moment. It really hit me that wow, I'm actually in France right now :O I also met Blanche's maternal grandmother, who is very nice and tries to speak english with me even though it's quite bad, and she speaks slowly in french which is a good thing haha. She explained a lot of stuff to me.

Today also was the first time ever in my life that someone asked me where exactly in Australia I came from =__=

Tonight, we had a special cake dessert for a great aunt who's celebrating her birthday today :) It was so nice, the extended family + some random exchange student singing happy birthday to her. And the cake was quite nice as well. Coming from someone who usually dislikes cakes that's saying something :D

Christmas is so soon!! Well 12 hours sooner for my friends in NZ than for myself, but still, so soon! Another year gone ): when are NCEA results coming back? ...It's so sad that that's my natural line of thought after thinking about Christmas.

----

So, now it's the 26th. A few hours after typing all that ^ I got up in the middle of the night and threw up. then went back to sleep and repeated again a few hours later. I would rather not spare the details but I spent the whole of the 24th in bed, not eating but sleeping, reading the 3rd harry potter book, listening to music and feeling like I was on a ship out at sea.



Christmas was actually really nice. Look at all the presents under the tree! :O And this isn't even when all the presents were there haha. Shows exactly how big the extended family is eh? @_@ I was surprised that I got a few presents from my host family :) I got some rosewater tonic, a little box of cakes, 2 french comic books (tintin and the like) and felix got me a sketchpad :) cute.

At night was the big concert, I had 2 lines in the play and I played River flows in You on piano for them :P hahaha it was nice to be included though. Also watched many french films and american movies dubbed in french while I was in Normandy, including Le petit nicholas, neuilly sa mere, enchanted, devil wears prada... ... i think that's it? oh and the 2nd half of percy jackson.

It's kinda sad how quickly the sun sets in the winter. I'm really missing the nz summer sun ):

I also kinda realised today as we were driving back to Paris that I have actually never seen a scarecrow in my entire life. Has anyone actually seen one? In real life I mean, not in movies and books and stuff. Random thought of the day I suppose haha...

okay screw this its way too cold, im gonna go take a hot shower and hope that i dont throw up after dinner tonight cuz we're eating out at a restaurant.

by popular demand, a short update

2 comments

I got food poisoning

threw up 3 times on xmas eve morning

stayed in bed all day, no food

ate a bit on xmas

probably got drunk on tiramisu

threw up 3 more times on the 26th (today)

fuck yeah it's been a great xmas. GG

jokes guys, real update coming soon. obviously havent had time to do anything due to being sick.

another update from normandy

3 comments

Ah... today is my mum's birthday and since I'm not there nobody gets cake ): poor brother. Even though usually I don't even eat that much cake haha. Well I did send her a txt and go online earlier this morning to tell her again :) to which she nagged me about being more polite and joining in and asking blanche's mum about her life and how she became so successful... right, I can't even understand when Blanche asks me what time I want to wake up let alone ask her mum about her university degree and job =__= Things I have discovered so far: she has green eyes and wears a blue sweater while the father has blue eyes and wears a green sweater. It's kinda cute :) and she must have a certain type of coffee in the morning otherwise she gets grumpy. She wears chanel no. 5. Yes that's all I've got.

I've been having the weirdest dreams while here. The other night I dreamt I pierced my ears but the guy missed and instead pierced my face (yeah, wtf?) and I left without paying accidentally. Also Tony and I stole packets of salmon and tuna from Mrs Reid's office, and Yujie and Jamie were running in circles around in the quad randomly (I'm sure anyone on facebook probably knows all this already though hahahaha).

Right now it's right after lunchtime and the guinea pigs are free to roam around the room :) This morning, after I got back from the cafe, they were practising a play in the theatre. I have 2 lines hahaha. Well it was nice for them to include me but I'm sure I'll stuff up haha. Last night after dinner we also did a canon choir of sorts with 8 people haha. It went like this: Everybody loves Saturday night, Everybody loves Saturday night, Everybody, Everybody, Everybody, Everybody, Everybody loves Saturday night. :) my daily dose of english I suppose haha.

LATER –



Well I had to stop there cuz we went to this little village about an hour's drive away. It was quite pretty :) I am transferring photos as I speak. Blanche just commented on my fast typing. Now I feel somewhat self conscious @@ Hmmm... well as we drove there was just a field of white snow. Her dad told me that normally it's all green :O It's amazing how even after a full winter of snow things can still grow abundantly. I guess there's a kind of moral to be learnt there too haha. Somehow that reminds me of something that happened on the way here... While still in Paris and we were driving here, a man randomly fell over in the middle of the road. After that, a lot of people came to help him. I thought that was really nice. Blanche's dad even got out of the car to call the ambulance. There were a lot of people tooting and just driving past, but a regular woman helped to direct the traffic while everyone else helped him up and tried to find out what happened. I thought that was really nice :) gave me warm fuzzies haha. Oh and the ambulance arrived in like 1 minute. I swear, so efficient here :O

Can't help but feel that today was much more productive than yesterday. I learnt a lot more of her cousins' names and her dad told me what the situation was anyway. Apparently he doesn't even know some of their names so ALLLG.... haha. It's pretty much the extended family up to second cousins. That explains why there are so many people... and he told me about his grandmother who was a violin teacher, which is why the whole family is very violin-centric. It's actually really cool imo. His aunt (father's younger sister) used to be a professional musician and now she conducts when the family plays. His uncle plays viola and his father plays cello. About ½ of my 'generation' in the family plays violin including Blanche and Felix, who had his debut on stage with the family orchestra tonight :)

There's a real big range of ages here which is nice. There's even a set of baby twins haha, one boy and one girl. It's pretty full on. Aww the cutest 2 year old arrived today as well, one of Blanche's 2nd cousins. He makes the :C face when he's just staring at you, and after the orchestra is done he does a little dance and claps and says BRAVO!! haha :) so cute

A few more people talked to me today, which was good. Except, cue many faces of confusion as I have no idea what some of them are saying @_@ A cello cousin who I differentiate as the one who wears chucks because he looks a lot like his younger brother asked me about school and stuff and I found it very difficult to answer because the school system is so different... Oh and I also passed him an empty carton of milk this morning so I felt a bit bad about that. I was gonna say there's no more milk as I gave it to him but he took it and said thank you and tipped it upside down and realised it was empty before I could piece the sentence together in my head.... but I think he's nice. I don't really know, he seems quiet. Then again compared to him I'm probably still considered to be an antisocial recluse zzz... whys my french so shitty....

A few people asked me if I understand everything HAHA I'm like noooo only a little bit D: but I think it's good that a lot of people know how hard it is for me haha. The piano cousin told me how when he spent 1 year in chicago last year he couldn't understand anything or respond haha. So I guess I don't feel toooo bad haha... progress is slow though haha still get a lot of awkward situations, but they have decreased in frequency, probably because I have learnt to accept awkwardness more than anything else tho...

It's snowing outside.

They're having a kind of party in the theatre right now but I left. Maybe I should have stayed? But Blanche is in the room atm resting and reading so idk. It's weird to be around the rest of them without a reason to be there lol. Oh and I'm tired. -excuses to not speak french-

Yessums. I suppose I will sleep now? I'm sure I've left out like 99% of what happened but I have a terrible memory ): I think that I actually enjoy seeing a wall of text that I have written, despite how others think it's too long LOL. It makes me think that I have actually done a lot of work I guess? Still missing Auckland though. ):

an update from normandy

3 comments

Yesterday I also read the whole of Chobits. It was shorter than I thought it would be :O less than 100 chapters. But it made me remember why I love CLAMP :) their art is so nice~



Well anyways here I am in Normandy. We're at this... resort place? I guess. It's very music based, even the curtains are music related :) and there are like 10+ pianos that I have seen just randomly around the place. It's snowy and pretty and completely different to everything I'm used to. I met a lot of Blanche's cousins (and she has a lot) and I'm pretty sure I've already forgotten all of their names @__@



It's quite cold here, and walking in the snow is both tiring and fun haha. But not when you fall over... not that I've fallen over yet :) well, nearly. But haven't actually yet hahaha. They're taking random photos now lol. I wish I could speak more frenchhh... either that or I wish I had an infinite amount of credit on my phone so I wouldn't feel bad about txting people back home zzzz.

I think there is free wifi here at the mill but it's a bit far away so I probably won't go down there again today (I went there already but I didn't bring my laptop). But, good news is, all the photos are now already on my laptop and ready to be uploaded :)



Arrived last night here at about 9pm reallllyy tired and hungry. But it's allg. This place is pretty nice :) I think everyone in her family plays some kind of instrument... There is one very cute male cousin who plays the piano very well :) Now you see why I want to know french? Hahaha jkjk. But seriously, everyone is sooo musical x.x I feel completely out of place haha. Actually it inspires me to go back to playing piano. There's not much I have to offer except a noob's rendition of Beethoven's fur elise and river flows in you @.@ I really want to play some other famous classical pieces. But ofc that's what I always say and I never act on it. Maybe this time will be different? Idk, it's really cool to be able to play music. It's like the universal language. No matter how much I'm sick of hearing french, music here is like my escape. I can listen to the music everyone is playing and understand it better than I can understand the french that comes out of their mouths haha. Some pieces I've always wanted to learn are Beethoven's moonlight sonata, Debussy's clair de lune and a few Chopin pieces...

I'm finding it quite hard to express myself as well as understand what other people are saying. Lol it's quite awkward at times when people ask me stuff and I have no idea what they said. I think it makes them think that I'm stupid or something. Well I guess I can see why, it's just natural to think that of someone who doesn't speak your own language. I think I can take this experience to treat foreigners better when I get back to NZ as well hahahaha... but at least nobody is actually mean to me I suppose. WHY CAN'T SOMEONE SPEAK ENGLISHHHH... I think it's a bit hard for me to get really close with most of these people anyway though as well. Like, they're a bit younger than me. Typical 14 and 15 year olds I suppose. Different interests I suppose? ): I am too old and mature...

On the other hand I think complete submersion is also good for me. My dreams are now occuring in franglais that doesn't actually make sense but that I know the meaning of in my head (well I would hope so since I made it up in my subconscious haha). I've had quite a lot of strange dreams since I got here. Many of them make me miss my friends at home badly ): I'm usually not one to get homesick, and it makes me realise that it's not the place I miss, but the people. I think you can go anywhere in the world and have fun if you're with the right people :) But right now I'm not with the ones I love the most TT So I miss them all and sometimes I feel quite lonely, especially when I see how close the family is here. Makes me think I should have postponed my flight to after new years like Clare and Lydia. I kinda can't wait for school to start lol, which is probably kinda weird for most of you haha.

Why do people keep saying that my blogs are too long anyways. They're not that long are they? I think it might just be the text size? I'm sorry if I have a lot to say LOL...

omg now I'm at the mill cafe. blanche left me here and expects me to get back to the main area by myself D: its about a 15 minute walk, and now it's 5.40pm and it's DARK.... and I'm planning to stay here a while since I need to upload photos. so, if I don't update again, assume the worst. ): I ADMIT IT, IM AFRAID OF THE DARK TT

k to finish here's girolle and truffe :P

day 2 in paris

5 comments

Not sure whenabouts I'll get to post again after this entry, since we're leaving for Normandy this afternoon and I think there's no internet over there. Although at this time of writing it's still Sunday night. I'm just taking into account that I'm going to post this tomorrow morning. Gosh that's confusing.

Well I guess Sunday afternoon, Blanche, Marin and I went to meet one of her friends and she took us to a museum of sorts which actually turns out to be some rich guy's house in the 18th/19th century. I found it really cool cuz I found a print of Jean Baptiste Chardin's monkey “Peinture” on the walls :O I used him as one of my artist references this year in printmaking haha. It was pretty surprising to see it on the wall... but it was such a beautiful big house/mansion. I can't imagine anyone living there though, it's really big and so... rich? Tapestries on every wall, vibrantly coloured carpets and furniture and gold plated candlesticks with motifs of griffons and dragons and stuff like that. Really rich people... there was probably enough paintings and prints on the walls to start a separate art museum @_@

Then we went to Aude (Blanche's friend)'s apartment where we had some cake and then went on youtube. It's interesting to note that the same popular videos back home and popular here :P we watched potter puppet pals' mysterious ticking noise and some of Remi Gaillard's videos. Hahaha some things never change.

Came home, oh yeah, they have this white harpsichord with black keys and wooden sharps/flats. At first I thought it was a piano with very little keys but it turns out it is a harpsichord. It takes a bit of getting used to because the keys feel very different. I played on that for a while because I'm supposed to have prepared something for some kind of musical gathering in Normandy. This family is very into music. The mother and father both play violins, Blanche plays the violin and the 2 brothers play the harpsichord :O As for me, I haven't touched the piano in like 2 years so yeahhhhhh a bit out of practice...

Anyways the father had some colleagues over, which was nice because there were 2 german people and 2 japanese people, so I wasn't the only one with imperfect french. If anything it was a good opportunity for me to listen to more french, especially by other people like myself haha. Marin let the guinea pigs loose, and their names btw are Champignon and Truf – mushroom and truffle (sorry, I have bad french so I heard it wrong the first time). Well a truffle is another kind of mushroom anyway haha. Yeah, then we had duck for dinner. It was sooo nice :O I realised that it's the first meat I've had since I got here, but it was so good. It was cooked steak style, in the oven. A bit raw on the inside. I like this way of cooking duck, I've decided :)

Hmmm it's 9.40pm. I should probably get to sleep and update this for real tomorrow morning. Ummm yeah. Laters.

NEXT DAY

I realise that I should probably upload more photos, but I keep leaving the cord downstairs and I can't be bothered going to get it. Typical lazy me eh. Leaving this afternoon at about 6pm apparently. I still haven't got a simcard or exchanged my 500 euro notes which I have been told nobody will accept because nobody uses them. :O thanks dad, now I have a lot of money that I can't use.

Otherwise I have nothing of note to report. I guess I'll update with a massive update in 5 days after I get back from Normandy? I think I'm going to take my laptop with me so that I can write as I experience things rather than trying to include everything at once which will probably lead to me missing out 80% of the stuff I wanted to talk about (Yes this always happens when I put off blogging).

DAY 1 IN PARIS

4 comments

Well today... I pretty much bummed around online for a few hours, talking to dad and some friends. Then due to the 12 hour timezone gap a lot of people went to sleep. Then I went to play a monopoly style boardgame with the 13 year old brother whose name I now have learnt is Marin :) I lost cuz I'm noob lololol... I guess those games between 2 people don't last very long @_@ I wanted to play real monopoly but he couldn't find the board for it. He tried to speak english with me which was very nice. Then we had lunch and I had the most terrible tasting raw vegetables. They were seriously so bitter I wanted to denature my tastebuds. Idk if it was the dressing on them or just the vegetables themselves. The worst thing was everyone else just ate it like it was normal. DDD: but other than that we had chilli con carne, which was very nice and somewhat made up for it, and some biscuits and coffee.



After lunch, Blanche, her dad and I went to the louvre :) It was soooo beautiful and way bigger than I had imagined. And I'd already imagined it to be pretty huge... the Mona Lisa was also bigger than I thought it was. Some paintings were just downright ENORMOUS though. :O I really love Italian renaissance paintings though. And the sculptures are nice as well... I especially liked Mercure Volant and La Victoire de Somathrace, even though it's not exactly in 1 piece haha. They don't have a very large collection of prints (I'm guessing, from the map, the areas allocated to prints and drawings are quite small, since I didn't actually get to see any), but I would like to see them... idk why printmaking is such a small medium in terms of popularity. It might actually be my favourite art form... or it might be sculpture. Hm.

Blanche's dad knows quite a lot about renaissance paintings, and she recently returned from Florence, so she knew quite a lot about Botticelli etc. Maybe all europeans are just very artsy? Idk haha but if I lived in Paris I would visit the Louvre every month or something. It's so beautiful D:

I found it quite interesting how there were so many people crowded around the Mona Lisa, while there was pretty much no one looking at Da Vinci's other paintings. It's as if everything is so beautiful and epic, and there's so much of it, that you only have time to look at the 'most important' pieces? I also think that 99% of the Mona Lisa's fame is derived from its fame. It's famous because it's famous lol... I'm sure a lot of people just go to look at it because it's famous, rather than because they have actual fascination. Personally I've already seen the image way too many times for it to be that important to me compared to other pieces in the gallery, many of which I find much more fascinating than the Mona Lisa.

Came home on the metro, took a shower, felt like sleeping but then figured I might as well go online when I can, but then I realised that it's 5am in the morning in nz and that there would probably be nobody to talk to, but when I logged in I remembered that my msn list has no life and 17 people were online. Also when I logged into MS to do ring quest there were 4-5 people online in the guild.... I'm pretty sure my friends are insomniacs.

NEXT DAY

Well I decided to go down after I wrote that ^ cuz I felt a bit antisocial and my ring quest was up haha. I have quite a lot of photos that I can't be bothered uploading... Today it's snowing really nicely and I think we're going to go to the Seine because apparently it's quite rare for the snow to get this thick (about 10cm is what Blanche's dad said). I'll try to take some photos. I didn't bring a camera though, so I'll have to use my phone haha.

Let me tell you all about more of Felix's hawwwness. At dinner last night after dessert he just went up behind his mum and hugged her from behind and started kissing her on the cheeks like muah muah muah muah like a little puppy :) it was sooo cute. And everyone was laughing and the mum was like okay okay that's enough, it's time to wash up now and he was like POURQUOIIII~~?? muah muah muah muah... hahaha so cute :)

After dinner, Blanche, Marin, Felix and I watched a french movie that failed cuz the projector kept going blue. But we managed to see half of it. Felix brought in 3 blankets that were bigger than he is and said they're to share :) hawww but his mum told him not to because they were dragging along the ground but he was like “noooo we'll get cold!”

But yeah after that I went to sleep and now it's the morning. Oh yeah they also have 2 guinea pigs called 'mushroom' and 'another mushroom'. I will upload that photo maybe tomorrow :P LATAS BROS I think I should wrap this up now cuz I actually have people to msn now hahaah.

IM IN FRANCE

5 comments

On my first half day in Paris, it snowed. :) After 27+ hours in the air, 2 transfers in Sydney and Dubai, I am finallyyyyy in France. I'm actually typing this out in a word document right now because I can't really update my blog since there's no wifi. But, I will try to publish it asap. It's been like almost 2 days since I have been cut off from the internet ): IT'S SO HARD TO DEAL WITH... TT I miss going on the world wide web (WWW) --- obviously we are meant to be together, our initials match. ):

Anyway I had an awww moment in Sydney while waiting for my flight cuz I was drawing in my sketchbook and this little boy sat down beside me in front of this pillar. He must've been around 8 or 9? Anyway as they were starting to board I closed my sketchbook and got up, and he showed me this notebook he'd been drawing in, and on the bottom he had written “you're a really good drawer”.... awwwwww it was so cute :) I was also contemplating whether I should buy Yujie that koala she asked for since I didn't actually initially realise that I had a stopover in Sydney, but I realised that I had emptied my wallet of all foreign currency and so I actually couldn't buy anything =.=

I'm sooooo sick of planes now. It was pretty much drifting in and out of sleep, watching a lot of Friends, and eating. I didn't really have enough attention span for a movie. Well I did watch the Liar Game movie, but that's Liar Game. I tried to watch The Other Guys after that, but then we had the stopover in Sydney and I never actually finished it. I fell asleep about an hour into Salt and just kinda gave up after that. There weren't that many films I wanted to see anyway :/ I actually got to have 2 dinners and 2 breakfasts because of the stopovers hahaha. Like, Plane A – dinner. Stopover in Sydney. Plane B – dinner. Plane B – breakfast. Stopover in Dubai. Plane C – breakfast. And technically only about a day has passed since I got on the plane (accounting for timezones and all that :P...). Ahh time screws with my head @_@

It's kind of weird to listen to everyone speaking French. It's like allll around me, and I can only really understand about 10% of it. In all other cases I just have to nod and smile. If they ask me something I hope to god I know what they're asking, otherwise I end up blank staring and juggling Oui..? Non...? Je ne sais pas...? Qu'est que c'est...? Je ne comprends pas... Anyway though hopefully I will soon get used to it and improve my French. It's totally exhausting though...

After I got off the plane at CDG at about 12.30pm, had to go through passport stamping and baggage claim, then there was no customs? o.o I just walked out. I actually threw away half a bar of Cadbury Old Gold before that because you're not allowed to take dairy products, but they didn't even check. What a waste of good chocolate! Anyway, Blanche's mum took me on the train into Paris where we met up with Blanche who has just returned after a trip to Italy :O Then I was allowed to the apartment where I had a shower and then Blanche took me out again to meet her friend Caterine-Marie and they pretty much showed me some of the streets and shopping places around the area. All on foot. @_@ SO TIRING... I'm not used to walking so much, especially 3 plane rides and trying to understand a foreign language hahaha. So tired now. Although... must be said, the type of good looking guy you see about once in a blue moon in NZ is in overabundance here. Pretty much 1 in every 5 guys is like :O niceeeeee. :P But I think it may have to do with the style of dress as well. Guys in scarves and double breasted coats :) nice.

It's SO COLD HERE though. My grandma was all like “nahhhh it won't be that cold.” TT cannot deal with cold or hot weather. NZ summer when it's not humid please............... have to go out with a hat, gloves, puffer jacket, sweater, thermal, jeans, socks + boots... I need to wear leggings or something tomorrow I think. Although, when you walk into a store it's like an instant heater~ so nice haha. But I'm probably gonna catch a cold soon. On the flight to Dubai this kid was walking down the aisle and TURNED TO ME to sneeze in my face ): lame kid.

NEXT DAY.
Okay so now it's about 9am here (about 9pm in NZ). I woke up about an hour ago. Heard it's been raining ever since I left. Awwww :P misses me. The kids in this family are SO RESPONSIBLE... :O I still haven't even seen the father, but Blanche (who's only 15/16?) and her brother who I still haven't figured out the name of who's 13 made dinner last night @_@ and it was so nice as well. I just got owned in cooking skill hahaha. And the little boy Felix, who's 10, is soooo cute. Last night he came into my room with this little stuffed hedgehog and put it under the shelf and was like SHHHH.... so cute :3 and also last night during dinner the 2 next door neighbour's kids came in to say hi to me. I feel so special and useless @_@ I can't really talk to anyone because my French is too shitty so I can only say oui or non ): and that's only when I can actually understand what they're saying. It's like they open their mouth and I expect something I can understand to come out but then it's French and I realise oh that's right, I'm in France now.

I wish I had some other way of taking up my time and hawww I miss the internet so much, but I can't take my laptop and ask them how to get on yet because it kind of died during the night since the battery doesn't last more than an hour on standby without charging so now I'm charging it. Oh look I just got a txt from my parents. My mum invites me to msn. ): INTERNETTTT....

Omg the father is a god. He speaks english to me. AND. He connected me to the internet. K time to publish this.

chasing your dreams

0 comments


You Have Three Wishes by bladebandit

Is chasing our dreams overrated or underrated? Many people have dreams when they're younger, but 99% of us do not actually realise those dreams of our childhood. Granted, people do change, and I would like to say that most people go on to do the things they love, but that's just not the case from my own experience. This has caused me to think cautiously about how I should look at things. On one hand it's important, especially in our world, to think about the realistic boundaries of our dreams. Money is important, which is why it's one of the factors that people take into account when deciding what to do with their lives. It's highly idealistic that everyone could live a happy life if they just do what they love. However, I also find it a terribly bleak and pessimistic view to say that dreams are worthless and that we should all do whatever reaps the most materialistic benefits.

I speak from the perspective of someone who doesn't really know what she wants, has no real passions or particularly strong dreams. There are things I enjoy, but I am willing to sacrifice them if need be. I suppose in a way it comes down to the individual's priorities and how much they value the 2 choices -- eg on one hand, a stable lifestyle, comfortable income, or something they love doing. I think most people will compromise though -- this is probably the category I fall under. There are some who are pressured by society, parents or otherwise to go down that path of monetary gain with little or no stimulation for their wants and needs, and there are those who drop everything and go straight for their dreams, regardless of whether they end up living in a box. I'm just wondering which one is better...

They say that if you do what you love, you will be successful and rich. Personally I think this is a load of crap. Agreed, there is a higher chance that you will do well in that respective field if you enjoy what you are doing, but even a stressed out doctor who hates his job is paid more than a teacher who loves what he's doing. Although, if the doctor values money, I suppose that also raises his 'love' for his job a little bit... I often see extremely talented artists on Queen St, begging for money because they're broke. I have a certain amount of respect for these people actually, because it's evident that they have pursued something they are interested in, and simply lost out because of life. But, these people hardly ever look happy to me. There are a lot of inspirational speakers who have been through hardships of chasing their dreams etc, experienced failure and then rose up to become international best selling authors (JK Rowling...) BUT, I always wonder, for that 1 person who succeeded, how many failed? It makes me wonder at what point you should stop chasing your dreams if they aren't working out and turn to something more stable instead. Or, if you should just go all the way if you already started something, because giving up is looked down upon, even if the chances of succeeding are so extremely slim?

How should we view life? I realised that at school we are given an extremely wonderful view of the world, but I have doubts about the reality that exists out there. Then again, it could just be that after St Cuths we somehow all have a magical gateway into the real world that is blessed with good luck and fortune. I don't like to kid myself, and I'm fully aware that for the greater majority, life is no such walk in the path. This makes me feel pessimistic sometimes even though I don't intend to be, because so many people seem to have an extremely idyllic view of the world. I question my perspective all the time, whether I am being too pessimistic or depressed. Honestly I don't think I'll ever figure it out, but I can't help the way I think. I would -like- to think that the world is a good place, but evidence trumps imagination.

On the other hand, it's dangerous to go through life thinking about it simply in terms of the negatives. I think it's important to have a certain amount of simplistic, ignorant love for the good things around us. Shallowness is something that is necessary, otherwise we would probably have gone insane already. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy :P Man I have gone really off topic now that I look at the title. HAHA... Oh well. I guess it's kind of relevant? You have to have some dreams. And if you're going to dream, I think you should dream big. But, don't expect all your dreams to come true, and accept that failure is just a part of life. I try not to expect much anymore (well at least less than before), and instead be met with surprises :) I think it's working out alright so far, but sometimes it's hard haha. And I think we can agree that if you don't fear failure, none of this is relevant. Just go for it :P Got nothing to fear anyway right? Too bad fear of failure is all too common.

I think this blog post pretty much went in circles. I apologise for fragmented thoughts, it really was just composed as I typed... @__@ usually I think about a few main points for a few days before blogging, but this was really spontaneous zzz... oh well, anyway I'm leaving for Paris on Thursday. I'll try to blog while I'm there but I don't know if I will have access to internet. But here's hoping, right? :) laters

truth and insanity

0 comments


Insanity by x-your-suicide-rose

As everyone who has ever taken a philosophy class in their life probably knows, there is no set 'truth'. I guess it's been talked about again and again -- What is truth? How do we know what we believe is 'true'? Does the truth even exist? Do we influence reality or is reality independent of our perception? If it is dependent on our perception, how can anything be 'true'?


This then leads to my second thought... how can we tell if someone is insane? If there is no known truth, their perception of the world may very well be just as legitimate as ours. For example, take the person who hears voices. For all we know, they could actually be ghost whisperers, able to hear the voices of the dead. If this is so, is it not possible that the person's perception of the world is actually more accurate than the person who does not hear voices? They are able to perceive things that we cannot -- if there is a set reality and 'truth', independent of our perception of the world, it is very possible that they could be experiencing more of it than we are, right? After all, there is no scientific disproof of the existence of spirits. It's just one example, but it could be anything. Anyway, one example like this makes it possible for us to consider the possibilities...

We cannot prove who is right -- we only judge based on what is normal. But as we have learned from the past, what is accepted as true and 'normal' may turn out to be incorrect. Interestingly though, those who go against the norms always seem to be put down or regarded as foolish or indeed, insane. Take Galileo, the father of modern astronomy. When he first proposed that the earth revolved around the sun as opposed to Copernicus' accepted theory at the time that everything revolved around the earth, the church threw a fit and put him under house arrest for several years. Is it not possible then, that these 'insane' people with 'mental issues' that are placed in asylums today are seeing a greater truth? I'm not saying that they are, I'm just saying that the possibility exists.

Insanity is a strange subject actually. You can never really tell if you're insane, since a requirement is for you to fully believe everything you think -- it's not a label you decide for yourself, but a label others put on you if you are deemed to be too unique or different from the conventional way of thinking. You can never say that you ARE sane, because that just goes against you once everyone else is firmly set on the idea that you are insane. It seems to me that psychiatrists and psychologists work a lot with 'mentally unwell' people, but what's to say that it's a defect at all? Is it not slightly prejudiced to label those who have different thought patterns as insane? Who decides how our minds are supposed to be?

Having said that, many still don't regard psychology to be a real science. It's a developing study, and not a lot is known about the brain or how it works. This of course has led to many horror movies and games about mental asylums (try Asylum626. warning it's R18, you have to enter birthdate respectively. and it's only playable between 6pm and 6am.) No one really knows what goes on in asylums, and no one really knows what's going on inside an insane person's head. Is this just fear of the unknown?

Don't get me wrong, psychopathy is fucking scary from the perspective of the 'sane' man, probably due to its obvious clash with the moral codes ingrained in us (up to debate whether they are learnt and imposed on us by society or part of our being), but I just found myself wondering some things. Interesting to think about, I hope.

Yes I did watch Shutter Island recently btw.

how I became the strange person I am today and random thoughts in between

4 comments

Lately I feel so lonely, but at the same time I'm kind of sick of people. I'm weird like that... Actually I've never really been 'normal'. As a baby I didn't cry and I hated to eat and bathe. From a young age I tended to ignore people around me, didn't really like to talk to people and preferred to spend long periods of time playing by myself, never needing attention from my parents. It got the point where my dad thought I was autistic. He was apparently really happy when I started making friends in primary school. Now that I think about it though I only remember at my kindergarten there was a girl who liked to bully me but I kept quiet about it because it didn't bother me that much. I recall one time she threw sand at me from behind and some got onto the shirt of the girl in front of me, and I helped her brush it off even though I had sand all through my own hair. Sounds nice but whatever, didn't think much of it back then.


When I got to my first primary I remember there was this one girl I wanted to be friends with but her other friend didn't like me much, but we played together anyway because we both wanted to be friends with her. Her other friend was harsh to me at times but I put up with it because I wanted to be friends with the girl. After I switched schools after Year 1 I guess I had some kind of revelation that girls are complicated and that I'd just play with the boys from then on. But since my grandma liked to dress me in dresses and tights she'd always yell at me when I got home with holes in my stockings from tripping over because I was running around. I remember so many lectures about how girls were 'supposed' to be graceful and elegant and not run around and be rough with boys. I really resented it back then. I didn't understand gender roles and I still don't. I remember swearing to my dad when I was about 7 that I would never like shopping ever in my life haha because I was so tired of walking around the mall with my mum.

I don't remember the in between years much. But I still talk to my friends from then sometimes. I hate it when my mum asks me how ____ is doing, because I normally don't know and I don't understand why she's so interested anyway, and every time my response is the same so it bothers me how she keeps asking the same thing time after time.

Sometimes I wonder how everyone from back then turned out. I see some of their facebook pages and it's funny how some people seem to stay the same while others change a lot. The ephemeral and fickle nature of youth eh? Sometimes I also wonder how I might have turned out, if I didn't go through certain events in my life. What would I be like if I stayed in Henderson? If I never went to St. Cuths? If I didn't go to china camp? My life would be very different in all 3 situations, yet they are such small changes in the grand scale of things.

How do those around us shape us? How do we, in turn, shape those around us? During peer support training I heard a lot about the dramas of year 9, but honestly I never experienced them. I do not even recall being nervous or frightened of anything in year 9. There was not much drama for me, but when I hear about the other things that have happened in this 'crucial year' I realise that I had no idea any of that was going on while I was there. Is it a case of not noticing things while they are happening? (I do tend to be pretty unobservant)

I am not even really sure how hard I work. People often tell me that I work quite hard to achieve the things I do, but it feels like nothing for me. This worries me a lot because it's as if I'm not really controlling my own life, it's like things just kind of happen and it doesn't affect me that much.

If I think about it though, nothing really affects me that much. When I had my surgery this year, my parents were more concerned for my health than I was. They have this idea that it was much worse than it actually was. Sometimes when I'm on the bus I think about what would happen if the bus crashed and I died. I often try to imagine the things I would regret, but I can't think of anything, except maybe not living longer. Sometimes when I'm on a high building I wonder if I would survive if I jumped. Not actually suicidal obviously, but I do wonder what would happen if I just got up and jumped off. Often I look at myself in the mirror and feel like I'm just thoughts trapped in this body. It's not really mine, just a medium for me to do things through.

Apparently I have pretty imba luck. I don't know where it comes from or if it even exists, because I have a feeling it's just something in certain people's heads, but I do feel pretty lucky for the life I have. But a lot of people have a life like mine, and I don't feel especially lucky compared to them or anything.



Sometimes I look at the people around me and wonder if any of them ever have the thoughts I have, and to what extent. It seems that most of the time they seem to be really superficial and thinking about things that do not really matter. I do often listen to things people say and think to myself like, wow, they have nothing else to worry about? But actually I'm quite jealous because I can't enjoy the simple things as well as them. When I have nothing particularly deep to think about I get very bored with life, as people would know. I AM able to enjoy the very very simple things in life, like the sunny days at the beach, and the constant downpour of a thunderstorm at night. But everything in between the very simple and the deep... I get sick of it.

From time to time I get really unmotivated with life. I honestly ask myself, whats the point? every time I do something. Most of the things I do I regard as activities to pass time with, where the sole purpose is to waste time. I'm not even that excited to go to France. It just seems like something I have to do to get to next year. And next year is something I have to do to get to uni...

Lately I've been feeling quite trapped, but I'm starting to get to the fuck it all stage. I seriously just don't care anymore. I do whatever the hell I want and no one can do anything about it. Problem being, I don't want to do anything. Just sitting at home like a slob all day... Well tbh if I had the money I would move out of the house in a heartbeat. Sometimes I wonder what it would be like to just run away and start a real life already. Crazy I know.

Sigh, whatever.

just.. bored.

1 comments

I wanted to blog about a lot of stuff for a long time, but when I finally felt like opening up this page none of it really came to my mind.


Hmm I just realised that one of the sites I used to frequent is no longer online. ): sparrow.net.tc... it was a relatively small site, quite personal. It was actually one of the inspirations for me to learn more about html and the like. I think the girl who ran it was called Annie? Not sure haha. Anyway yeah that's a bit sad. It's weird that something so small has had such a big impact on who I am, and now it's gone ):

My laptop battery is also pretty much dead... 70% = 27 mins remaining.. sigh

In other news, I am bored as hell, waiting for the holidays to start/be over/whatever... I know it's a bad way to think but I really just cbf lately.

Look I can't even focus on making a proper blog post. omg I just accidentally closed the window. Thank god there's autosave.

FFFF this....................................... I'll update tomorrow. Going to the beach. Hopefully it'll be fun. Otherwise I might die of boredom.

Oh yeah & happy summer guys lol.