Thursday, November 29, 2012

"You should go out more, you know," said the girl, dipping the tip of her toes inside the cool green sea. She was thirteen at that time, with her wavy chocolate brown hair tied up into a messy bun, her sea green eyes looking far at the horizon, her porcelain-looking body sitting on top of a pile of golden sand.
"Nah, I don't think so, Annie," replied the boy, who was tying knots on a net with his fingers, sitting next to Annie. His tan skin was glistening under the orange sunset, his eyes(the same shade as Annie's) fixed on his knot, and his thin lips were forming a straight line.
"Oh I sense so much joy being around you, Finn," replied Annie, rolling her eyes. Sarcasm always brighten the fourteen year old boy up, she thought in mind.
But it wasn't working. He was still fixed on his knot, probably shutting the world around him. Even shutting Annie, who could always bring  a smile upon his face.

"Hey Finn," she called, trying to get his attention. Finally, he looked up from his knot, his eyes settling on hers.
"Hm?" he asked.
"You can't keep on doing this to yourself, you know," Annie started, looking at his eyes with pure concern.
"Doing what?"
"You know, keeping your distance from everything," Annie continued, her eyes growing larger. "Not from your mother, and not from me."
Finnick paused, digesting every word that Annie said. Annie tried to put her hand on his shoulder, but he flinched away.
"Sorry, I still have the feeling that I'm in the," there he paused, his eyes grew large as he remembered that horrifying place,"arena." He took Annie's hand in his and placed her hand on top of his shoulder. "Thanks. I really need this," he said with a weak smile, gesturing to Annie's hand on top of his shoulder.
"It still gives you nightmares doesn't it?" she asked worriedly.
Finnick looked down and continued to tie more knots. He nodded. It's been months since the Games had been over. Finnick won, and he thought that by coming back home to his mother and Annie would fix everything. But it didn't. He couldn't go back. He went there as an innocent 14 year old boy, and returned as a murderer. It gave him nightmares. Sometimes he might woke up screaming at the dead of night, dreaming of the girl from District 11 that he murdered with his trident, asking him why he had to kill her . Or the mutts that chased him deep in the forest . But the thought that scared him most was losing Annie. He can't lose her. But if he does not do as he was ordered, President Snow will find her. And torture her. He grimaced at the thought. He can't let that happen. No, he won't let that happen. Ever.
"I don't get it," Finnick said, looking at the soothing sky.
"Get what?" asked Annie, fixing Finnick's knot with her tiny and trained fingers.
"You treating me the same way before I joined the games," Finnick replied, still fixing his eyes on the sky.
"Because I am a murderer," he answered, looking at Annie. His eyes were red with fury, regret, and despair.
"No, you are Finnick Odair, my friend," Annie said.
Finnick scoffed. "I killed those tributes Annie. I killed them and watched them die," he said, his voice filled with anguish, hating himself for what he had done.
"You had no choice, Finn," Annie said with her soothing voice. "It was not you who killed them. It was them," she said with anger and disgust, referring to the people in Capitol.
"But I shouldn't have killed all those people," Finnick said.
"No, they shouldn't have invented the games," she replied.
"Even then, I am still a killer," Finnick said, mourning all those dead tributes he murdered.
Annie sighed, and stopped talking. She picked up the yarns she brought, and started to work on them.
"What are you making?" Finnick asked, looking at the unfinished strands of yarn in Annie's lap.
"Wait for it, you impatient blond," Annie said, still concentrating on her yarns.
"My hair is bronze, Ann," Finnick said with a weak smile.
"Uhuh," Annie replied.
After a few minutes, Annie smiled with satisfaction at her creation.
"Close your eyes," she instructed.
Finnick chuckled, "What are you doing?"
"Just do as you were told," Annie said.
Finnick did as he was told, and he felt Annie's hands pulling his hands to his back. Then he felt the rough yarn tied around his wrists.
"Annie.." he said with a smile, still closing his eyes. "What are you planning to do? Tie me up and drown me?"
"Yeah right, if I were going to murder you, I wouldn't be drowning you in the sea," she replied, knowing that Finnick was a great swimmer. "Now open them."
Finnick opened his eyes, and found Annie standing in front of him, smiling. He wanted to brush a strand of her hair away from those green eyes of hers, but found that his hands were tied back with a make-shift handcuff Annie made for him.
"Ann, what's this?" Finnick asked with amusement.
"A handcuff," she replied. "You know, coz' you're a criminal and all."
Finnick laughed. "Okay, okay, you caught me. Now what do you want me to do?"
"I want you to.." Annie paused, thinking of a list of stuff she want Finnick to do.
"To slow!" Finnick said suddenly, and in a flash he undid the knot (which Annie purposely made loose) and splashed water from the sea at Annie. Annie squealed as the cold water sprayed her, and she chased Finnick who had ran away before she could say something.
They continued to play in the beach, splashing water at each other until they were soaking wet. For once, Finnick had forgotten everything about the Games. All he cared about was Annie, and nothing could ever change that.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Up With The Birds

At times like this she just don't know what to do anymore. Everything, it seemed, was holding her down. The world asked too much from a flawed, weak, and incapable young girl. She just buried her soulless face into a pile of pillows on her bed, trying to shut the world outside even though she knew she was still inside that scary, big, unpredictable place.
She just laid on her bed motionless, too powerless to even drink a glass of water. "This is what I really am," she said to herself wearily.
She was just a girl, nothing more. She was not that superhero she had led everyone to believe. She was not strong enough to just suck it up and carry on. No, she was too weak, far too weak. Her parents, her peers, the school, everyone, wanted 110% from her. Being the perfect daughter, the perfect student, the perfect friend, the perfect lover, the perfect human. But what she didn't realize then was that she can't be perfect, because nobody is. Deep down in her heart, she knows this. But she still force herself to do things beyond her reach, killing herself slowly inside, like keeping herself in a toxic bubble.
Saying "It's fine" even though it's bludgeoning her inside.
Saying "I can handle it" even though she knew she's carrying a thousand pounds of responsibility on her back.
Hiding excruciating pain behind a lively smile, clouding the people around her from her true feelings. Being the tough girl, the strong one, the armored human. But armors rust and hers did. She didn't cry, though, she never did. To her, crying won't fix anything. That was true, but crying was better than containing that massive weight in her chest.
Sometimes she wished she could just leave school, leave her family, leave everything and just fly up with the birds, away from the world, away from everything and just fly. She wished a flock of birds would just scoop her up from this earth and bring her up to a place where nothing will pull her down, even gravity.
She turned on her iPod and let the sad yet uplifting music surround her. She closed her eyes and just listened, reliving the lyrics of the song. Never before had the perplexing lyrics from that song seemed like diary entries of her own. She closed her eyes and for a moment then, she was not in this world. She was soaring high up in the sky, high up with the birds.

Listen to Up With The Birds

Sunday, October 21, 2012

A Few of My Favorite Coldplay Song Quotes

  1. "People moving all the time inside a perfectly straight line. Don't you wanna just curve away?" -Strawberry Swing
  2. "Now the sky could be blue, I don't mind, without you it's a waste of time." :) -Strawberry Swing.
  3. "So I won't show or feel any pain. Even though all my armor might rust in the rain." -Up With the Birds
  4. "Do you ever get the feeling that you're missing the mark?" -Hurts Like Heaven
  5. "Once upon a time we fell apart, you hold it in your hands the two halves of my heart." -Princess of China
  6. "On concrete canvas I'll be making my mark, armed with a spray can soul." -Hurts Like Heaven
  7. "When she was just a girl she expected the world, but it flew away from reach so she ran away in her sleep."-Paradise
  8. "Life goes on it gets so heavy."-Paradise
  9. "I know the sun must set to rise."-Paradise.
  10. "Be a cartoon heart,"-Charlie Brown.
  11. "We'll run riot, we'll be glowing in the dark."-Charlie Brown
  12. "I'd rather be a comma than a full stop." -Every Teardrop is a Waterfall
  13. "I feel my heart start beating to my favorite song."-Every Teardrop is a Waterfall
  14. "So you can hurt me bad. But still I'll raise the flag."-Every Teardrop is a Waterfall
  15. "When you're tired of racing and you found you never left the start."-Don't Let It Break Your Heart
  16. "Even in your rains and shadows, still we're never gonna part."-Don't Let It Break Your Heart
  17. "But life is for living we all know, and I don't wanna live it alone." -Life Is For Living
  18. "It just seems that upstream I keep rowing, still got such a long way to go."-U.F.O.
  19. "But that's alright sometimes sunlight come streaming through the holes."-U.F.O.
  20. "Through chaos as it swirls, it's us against the world."-Us Against the World
  21. "When you lose something you can't replace."-Fix You
  22. "When you love someone but it goes to waste." -Fix You
  23. "You don't know how lovely you are."-The Scientist
  24. "Nobody said it was easy, no one ever said it would be this hard." -The Scientist.
  25. "Look at the stars, look how they shine for you."-Yellow
  26. "Am I part of the cure, or am I part of the disease?"-Clocks
  27. "Gravity release me and don't ever hold me down."-Life in Technicolor ii
  28. "Just because I'm hurting, doesn't mean I'm hurt."-Lost
  29. "So I look in your direction but you pay me no attention don't you?"-Shiver
  30. "Give me real, don't give me fake."-Politik
  31. "We Just gotta turn up to be heard."-Major Minus
  32. "When the truth is, I miss you."-Warning Sign
Yep, these are only a few of my favorite quotes from my favorite band :) Oh, and this guy is Guy Berryman, Coldplay's bassist  :3

WSC : Jakarta, oh Jakarta.. Part 2 (first debate round)

  The pit in my stomach seemed to grow larger. "I hate debating, I really do," I murmured to myself as I wiped my sweaty palms on my plaid skirt. Michelle, Amanda, and I arrived in the room we're assigned to. Inside, we found two girls and a boy wearing formal uniforms, looking as nervous as we were. According to the handout we were given,they were from Raffles International Christian School (RICS). I recognized the boy. He sat across me during the Scholar's Challenge. Awkwardly trying to start a conversation, I said "It's really, really cold in here." Well, it was very cold, but I never minded freezing temperature, in fact  I was rather fond of it. The RICS students seemed to brighten up a bit.
"Yes, it really is cold," one of the girls from RICS said. She pointed to a remote attached to the wall. "You can increase the temperature using that."
I smiled and did as she suggested.
"So, as you might have known we're from SMP Santa Laurensia," Michelle said. "It's our first time  joining WSC."
"It's our first time as well," the plumper girl said. Well, that was nice to know, I thought to myself. At least we're not going against students who competed last year.
"Are you guys from an international school?" asked the girl.
"No, we're from national plus, why?" Amanda said, taking her laptop out from its bag.
The girl looked surprise. "I thought you were from an international school because your English speaking skills are so good." Michelle, Amanda, and I beamed at the compliment.We introduced ourselves (I completely forgot all the RICS kids name), and had a lovely chat as Amanda played songs from her laptop. Finally, the adjudicator came and gave us a little briefing, and finally, she handed us the motion of the debate printed on a piece of paper. It read "It is easy to make a city sustainable." According to Zac's handout, we will be going against this motion. We were given 10 minutes to form our arguments.
  "Definitions," was the only word that escaped my mouth. Mr Chris, our Irish debate coach told us to look for definitions of keywords found in the motion to help us form our arguments. Amanda and Michelle understood what I meant and they quickly searched for them and some possible arguments we could make. It was decided that Michelle would be the first speaker, Amanda the second, and I am to be the last speaker. The adjudicator announced that time was up and it's time for the debate. "Game face," I whispered to Amanda. I put on the most serious face I could muster, and I glanced at Amanda. She's still looking very innocent and sweet, just like a little lamb. Amanda was anything but scary. The first speaker from the opposing team came up to the front of the class and stated her arguments. I started noting down her arguments on my notebook furiously. She  explained the definition of "sustainable",how to make cities sustainable using propagandas and coppenhagenizing the city, and examples of sustainable cities like Singapore and Coppenhagen. She was really good at presenting her arguments, and I was intimidated.
    We were a given 1 minute duration to discuss our rebuts. After it's time, Michelle went up. She rebutted the arguments just like how we planned it. She said that by making propaganda posters ,you can't make the citizens do them, and not all people want to stop using their cars and use bicycles instead. She also stated that only modern and developed cities can easily make their cities sustainable, like Singapore and Coppenhagen. Michelle stated that cities like Jakarta can't easily make itself sustainable, only the cities with resources to do so can. Michelle showed no doubt when she presented our arguments, and she did a really good job at it. I was so proud of my teammate that I felt like hugging her.
   Amanda slid a piece of paper to me as Michelle talked. On it was Amanda's drawing of a heart, and I glanced at it and nodded seriously, still putting on my resting face (trust me, my resting face is terrifying). It might sound ridiculous to you, but the the seniors of Santa Laurensia that joined WSC as well taught us to do so. The trick was to intimidate the opposing team  by passing fake notes to each other, making them think that we've planned out everything while in reality we were just doodling on the paper. The opposing team whispered to each other, and a firm look from the adjudicator silenced them.
"..and those are all the arguments I'd like to state, thank you," Michelle said. She returned to our seat,and during the one minute duration, Amanda asked me what we're going to say next.                  
"No idea," I said, shrugging, giving Amanda a toothy grin.
   Time was up, and the second speaker of the opposing team stepped up to the front of the class. She was the thinner of the two girls. She rebutted our rebuttals and our arguments, stating that propaganda posters can influence citizens to make the city sustainable, and that we can make cities sustainable by doing small tasks like throwing trash in its place. She also stated that if the citizens are educated, they will do their best to make the city sustainable. She also stated that we can spread the propagandas by using modern technology like BBM or text messaging. She also gave us more examples of sustainable cities. After she had finished, she returned to her seat. During the 1 minute duration my team frantically organized the arguments Amanda will present and also the rebuttals. Michelle was furiously scribbling notes on small pieces of papers as she explained the details to a bewildered Amanda. Amanda nodded vigorously, and I gave her a thumbs up which actually didn't help at all.
    After the one minute duration Amanda went up and presented our arguments and rebuttals. She said that education doesn't prevent you from littering. She also said that most people just delete text messages about saving the environment, because they knew that already but they never bothered to apply them. Amanda also said something else which I can't remember (whoops, my bad :P). And after that Amanda stated her arguments. I totally forget all of them. Well, I remember taking notes on my notebook but I guess I tear them off. Anyways, they were hardcore arguments and I could see the opposing team passing notes among each other with anxiety. The adjudicator knocked on the table which meant time was up, and Amanda took her seat. The last speaker from the cons team went up and summarized their whole debate and emphasized their arguments. It flew by rather quickly, and before I knew it, it was time for me to speak. I could feel my heart thumping in my ears, and my stomach lurched as I walked to the front of the room. I paused for a moment as I gained my composure, then I started to speak. The moment passed by in a blur, and before I knew it I could hear the adjudicator knocking at the table. I took my seat again. I was greeted with a pat on the back and a toothy smile from Amanda and Michelle, and we waited anxiously for the adjudicator to make the decision; who will win. I wiped my freezing sweaty palms on my plaid skirt  as I put my notebooks and pencils back in my tote bag.
In what seemed like eternity, the adjudicator finally made up her mind.
"Okay guys, you all did a great job today, but I have to state the winner of this round. The winner is," she paused dramatically. Then she pointed at our direction, and I couldn't believe it.
I felt like grinning my mouth off, and I smiled proudly at my teammates. I shook the hands of the opposing team and they smiled warmly in return.
"Congratulation, guys," one of the girls said kindly. I smiled back at her, and the adjudicator told where we should go for the second round.
"Don't get too happy," I thought to myself. "This is only the first round, the second round could be much harder."
And I was correct. The second round was much, much, harder.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

The Flatface

It had been six years since the incident. Six cruel and painful years. I have tried everything, a psychiatrist, emotional therapies, and for a while then it worked. I had forgotten the incident and lived my life, for quite sometime, normally. But today the memory came rushing in again. 6 years ago. Six years ago it had been a perfect Saturday. I was 7,and my dad had taken my brother and I to the park. I had played there for hours with my friends, playing tag and whatnot. The sky had turned vermillion and shades of pink enveloped the orange heavens , creating a peaceful hue. "Alice, let's go home," my father had said, carrying my sleeping older brother Candon in his strong arms.
"Oh, come on, dad!" I had complained, crossing my tubby arms across my chest. "Just one more game."
I begged and begged until he finally said yes.
"Fine, just a couple of hours more. After that, go straight home and no more excuses," said my dad. Our house was just a corner away from the park, so he didn't have to worry much about me getting home safe.
I went to my group of friends, and proposed to play a game of hide and seek. They all agreed, and the game had begin. We all hid as Jeffrey, my friend, counted to twenty. Some had hid inside the tube slide, while some climbed up the trees. Some couldn't seem to choose where to hide, but I was not one of them. I had known a perfect spot to hide. I hid amongst a dense bush, far from my other friends. It was an exciting feeling, hiding inside the bush, knowing that I was hiding in the best place to hide. Everything seemed so relaxing, the warm and humid air encircling me as I laid down on the cool and moist earth below. The breezes blew, creating a soft hushing whisper as it passed by. I relaxed my body and closed my eyes, finally realizing the fatigue that runs in my small body. Without my realization, I had fallen asleep.
A shriek. Its sound pierced and wafted in the air. My eyes shot open. The scream, it sounded like it's coming from a young woman. I kept my body on the ground, and I peered through the gaps between the leaves. All I was able to see with my sleepy eyes was the broad back of a man in a navy blue shirt and a pair of light blue jeans. He was cornering a terrified young woman. She was quite small, her wavy auburn hair fell about her pale face, her white shirt was crumpled and streaked with mud and dirt. Her dreamy blue pupils were dilated with fear, her whole body was shaking with fear, and her left suede black heel was missing.
"P-please," the woman begged shakily, her arm was stretched out in a protective way. She swallowed hard, and I could feel my own heartbeat ringing in my ears. I was scared. Too scared to even move or scream. "I will give you what you want," the woman continued.
"It's too late for that, you broke a promise," the man said in a deep, eerie voice. The man produced a dagger and sliced the woman's throat. The woman gasped and covered the wound with her jittering palm, her knees weaking until she finally fell down on a pool of her blood. I sat there, my whole body shaking as I stared at the dead woman. Tears welled up in my gray eyes, but I just sat there, motionless. The man, his sleeves stained with the woman's blood turned around, finally revealing his face to me. To my horror, I was staring straight at a monster. Instead of staring at a man's face, I saw something that only existed in nightmares. No eyes, no mouth, no nose, just a flat skin that served as its face. My heartbeat seemed to stop. I buried my face in my hands and cried silently. When I looked up, the monster disappeared along with the dead woman. All that was left was the pool of fresh blood.

  Dr. Norman, my psychiatrist had helped a lot. She had taught me how to forget that incident, using therapies and even hypnosis. It took me three excruciatingly long years to move on from that incident. My family had also been very supportive for me, and finally I was able to live my life normally, the incident had been wiped out of my head and only remembered as a terryfying nightmare. Everything had ran normally, until tonight.
Almost everynight since the past 6 years, a message was sent to my brain. The messages are usually in a form of an image, but I couldn't seem to understand what it meant. Tonight, I understood the message with perfect clarity. Flatface is real, and he's coming to get me.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Happy Birthday Indonesia !!!!!

  I, as a proud citizen of Indonesia, am here to congratulate my beloved country on its 67th birthday. 67 years ago, we fought for our independence, seeking for freedom and to stand on our own. Through blood, sweat, and a planned kidnapping of our first president and his vice, we earned our freedom.
  67 years ago, our first president stood in front of his house and read the proclamation of our independence. The proclamation was a declaration, a decleration of  Indonesia's freedom. It was also a promise to our citizens. It promised that we would no longer be under the hand of other countries. We will be independent, standing alone yet together.
  Years and years we thirst for our independence. 67 years ago finally got it. The people back then had fought just for us, the future generations, so that we can enjoy Indonesia as an independent country. But independence is not the end of it, our country needs to grow and develop. Our people must unite, just like our motto ; Bhineka Tunggal Ika. It means that even though we are all different, we are one. Are we, the future generations, ready to carry on the legacy of our country? Have we citizens apply Pancasila in our lives? I am still very young and still short of knowledge, but I strongly believe that we have not.
 Our first principle, Believe in the one and only God. To me, this principle also means that we must appreciate other people's religion that are different from ours. We must not force people that has different beliefs to believe in the God that we trust. And yet, many church in Indonesia are still burned down by people who held different religions. Many people are still discriminated because they hold different beliefs.
  Our second principle; Just and civilized humanity. Our citizens violated this principle almost every time. As a child from a middle-class family, I lived peacefully and did not get to experience the harsh side of this country (thankfully), yet I've heard and read about poor people not getting rights they deserve because they don't have the money. For example, crime department in this country seldom bother to catch the killers of the poor people in this country who died because of murder. Learning this fact about my country made me realize how cruel this country could be. I've always thought of our crime department are like those seen in movies, trying their best to catch the killers of the murdered victims in their country. But in reality, our crime department ain't Horatio and his crew.
 Our third principle, The unity of Indonesia. This principle is clearly written down and read to us during flag ceremonies, yet sometimes we completely ignore it. We still diffrentiate people by their race, their skin color, their culture, and many other "criterias". People held wars just because of this issue. Like for example Perang Sampit. Citizens of Indonesia in Kalimantan killed each other because of their different ethnicity. They chopped off the heads of their enemies and lay them out on their front yard with pride, forgetting that those severed heads belong to their own brothers and sisters. Is that what we call unity?
    These are only a bit of deeds that had violated Pancasila, and believe me, there's so much more. I conclude that citizens of Indonesia knows the principles of Pancasila, but they don't bother applying them in their daily lives. I hope that in Indo's future's birthdays, our citizens will try their best to apply Pancasila's principles. Nevertheless, I am still proud of my beloved country, and I would like to congratulate her on her 67th birthday. I love you Indonesia :) MERDEKA!

Just Something I Wanna Share

      On August 15, my school's student council had a meeting held in school. The plan was to discuss about a proposal (not a marriage proposal that is). Well something occurred and we couldn't get into the student council office, so we called Ms Ira (our adviser and my former biology teacher) to unlock the room. Long story short, she opened the door and *voila*, the office was in a huge mess. Everything was scattered around the petite room, and we found things that shouldn't belong there like clothes, toys, books, and a lightsaber. Ms.Ira was not pleased (I mean, who would?) by the mess, and she asked us to clean the place up and organize the things. Ms.Ira said that the stuff would be going for donation. We lifted box after box outside and collected the scattered items. That's when Joan, Putrie, Nadia, and I "discovered" the hidden truth; most of the stuff we found aren't bad at all..
 cute bags Joan and I found.
 Sorry for the inappropriate language ^^"
 Too bad it's not my size :P
   whatever this item is, i like it :)

Oh I almost forgot! Outside the office, we found a weird green monster puppet, and Joan said that it looks like Putrie.
the green puppet-like thing. I didn't see the resemblance, back then..
now i see it :'D

As we organized the jumbled mess, we found more and more adorable stuff. These stuff we add to our wish list.

 This is definitely going in joan's wish list
 some cute tops we found..
     Most of the clothes we found were shared among us, taking turns using it and paying a quarter of the price that it should have been. It was all a good bargain and we were very satisfied.

 Nevertheless, they were second-handed items and not all of them are nice. Some of them are horrible, and to the donation box they will go!
 we found this weird power-puff girls apron-like thing.Ms.Ira told us that those stuff are beach outfits.
 Not all of them are bad, joan's keeping the suspenders and i liked the vest..

           This made my dad laughed so hard, but spending much time with ravelto made me immune  to his hilarious-ness.

We found clothes in a hopeless place~

Conclusion: Project get awesome second-handed stuff with a good bargain accomplished.

Don't Look Back part 2

  My hurting legs wouldn't bear it anymore. My knees were weak, my shoulders sagged and I sank to the ground, my pale green eyes lifeless. I kneeled on a puddle of mud,my brand new pale gray jeans soaking up the brown liquid. The wind howled, and I felt my spine tingle as the wind blew past my frail kneeling body. I curled my body up, seeking warmth from what's left of my cold flesh. I curled there, immobile, and I took the time to observe my appearance. My black peacoat was damp and splattered with mud. My brown leather boots were scraped and also covered in mud. My hands were scraped and blood was escaping from my pale skin. I quickly covered the scar with my scarf, and I pushed back strands of my ice blond hair away from my face. My brain ordered my hands to retie my hair into a ponytail, but my bony fingers wouldn't do as it was told. I was still in shock, and now all my energy had been drained away from my body. In thirteen years of my existence, I had never been this tired.
    It was the first time I noticed my surroundings. The maple trees that surrounds the scenery were starting to change the colors of their leaves, making the trees looked candy-coated. An empty bench sat next to an old maple tree, its armrests rusty but still strong. There was an empty playground that was surrounded by more trees. A sign next to a lamp post said "Hunchberry Park".
    I knew this park well. I used to go there with my father when I was young. I grimaced at the thought, but found that I couldn't resist thinking about it. I remembered my father, his strong features and kind ocean blue eyes, his strong hands pushing my back gently, rocking the swing I was sitting at. I was 3 at that time, and it was in the middle of spring. It was a lovely day, the sun was high up in the sky, white fluffy clouds drifting in the caribbean blue sky. I giggled as the swing flew high up in the warm air, and I could also hear my father laughing with me. It seemed like minutes, although we had been playing in the park for hours, and the blue sky started to change its hue. My dad told me that it's time to go home, but I objected so we played again for an hour. We both laid down on the picnic mat my dad had laid out and watched the the clouds drifting in the pink sky.
"Addie, what does that look like to you?" asked my dad, pointing to a cloud. "Addie" was a nickname he made for me. My real name was Astrid, and I still wonder how he got the name "Addie".
"Bird," I answered in my laconic toddler language. He brushed back my smooth baby hair away from my chubby face and smiled at me, his eyes twinkling.
"Yes, that's right," he said, tweaking my chin. He locked his eyes with mine, and I remembered with perfect clarity the traces of sadness in his eyes. I didn't understand why he looked sad, so I asked him.
"Daddy, why are you sad?" I asked. He smiled, smoothing his short dark brown hair.
"Why would I be sad? I have you don't I?" he said, as he rised up from the ground, towering over me. He lifted me up with his arm, and lifted the basket and mat with the other. My father was a tall and sturdy man, but a very kind man inside.
"Yes. I have you too, and I'm happy," I replied cheerily, encircling my chubby arms around his neck. I fell asleep during the long drive back home. I didn't understand back then, but now as I grew older I learned that the reason behind his sadness that day was because of my mother. I never knew my mother, and my father barely told me anything about her. I assumed that she must have died when I was born, a typical cause of death. But I always wonder who my mother was. All I knew was that her name was Melissa Hood and she was 2 years younger than dad.
  My father and I lived alone in 23rd Street. My father never hired a nanny for me. Instead, we have Jane Aramis, our neighbour, who would gladly take care of me without payment. Jane was a young and lovely woman with locks of coffee colored hair and gray eyes, and she was married to a young lawyer named Kevin. They did not have children even though they desperately wanted one.
  I never knew anything about my father's occupation, and whenever I brought the topic up he would divert the conversation. It was curious, but I never seemed to mind. Until today, early in the morning when the fire ruined everything, including my father. Now I wished to know everything that my father hides.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

my alphabet..

A is for Avengers

B is for bitch, please!

C is for Coldplay

D is for Dexter

E is for Eddie Murphy

F is for friendship

G is for graffiti

H is for Hunger Games and Harry Shum Jr

I is for Iron Man

J is for jell-o

K is for Kinder Bueno

L is for Lorax

M is for music and mysterious benedict society

N is for Nigahiga

O is for Oreos

P is for Plaid

Q is for quotes

R is for rainy days

S is for Strawberry Swing and sherlock holmes

T is for totoro

U is for umbrellas

V is for vintage

W is for World Scholar's Cup :)

X is for Xmen

Y is for YLANEV (joan, vena, cheryl )

Z is for baZinga

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Just another dream..

Dreams. Dreams are confusing, and most of the time whimsical. Some dreams you forget, some just sticks in your head.
  I had a dream. I was walking in the garden of my old house, when suddenly the earth beneath my feet cracked open and it literally swallowed me whole. I fell down, down, down into the gap. But the peculiar thing was; I was falling slowly. As I fall down I heard a tune. A tune so familiar yet unrecognizable. 
  I fell to the earthen floor with a thud. I looked around, and found nothing. The ceiling suddenly changed its color from dark brown to caribbean blue. What once was a ceiling became a large group of tiny bluebirds, flying towards me in an orderly manner. It carried me, high up into the hazy pink afternoon sky. 
  I heard the tune again, but this time, it sounded like it's coming from a music box. The bluebirds seemed to explode into a burst of colorful confettis, decorating the sky. And yet again I fell down, and out of nowhere an umbrella appeared in my hand. I opened it, and I floated in the sky, and gently dropped down to the ground below. I found myself in a beautiful yet whimsical garden. The grass was a soft shade of magenta and the trees were peppered with what looked like vermillion watering cans. Under the shade of a brightly colored turquoise tree was a simple wooden swing hung to the branches with ropes. Grape vines grew around the rope, twisting and circling around it. I approached the swing. As I did, the tune grew louder and clearer, and when I sat on the swing, the tune turned back into a hushed lullaby. Curious, I started to look around to find the source of this tune. I walked and walked, until I found a gigantic bird's nest. I seemed to have lost my conscience for I idiotically climbed into the ominous looking nest. The tune grew louder, and I finally found the source of the music. A lady, with ice blond hair that was tied into an ornate hairdo, eyes blue and sparkling under the afternoon sun, and very light porcelain skin in a dainty baby blue satin dress was carrying an orb made out of clear glass. She seemed to be floating down in a pink tuft of cloud, carrying the orb which was the source of the tune. 
    It was strange that I did not feel scared, even though in reality if a strange woman floating on a cloud approach me I would probably freak out and throw my shoe at her. Instead I felt relaxed, as if I was floating on a cloud myself. The lullaby soothed me as it traveled from the orb into my ears. It encircled me, and it seemed to lift me up into the air. Up into the moon I went, climbing up the satellites as if they were a staircase to the moon. I stepped on the moon.  It was very different from the moon that really exists. Its surface was glowing a soft shade of yellow. Its surface was smooth and polished. Slowly, deliberately, I walked around the moon. I found an oddly shaped chair made out of wood, and I sat on it as I watched the universe beyond. I spotted a sailing ship which seemed to be floating in the starlit sky. There were two occupants of the ship, and one of them waved at me. I waved back, and the shipped sailed towards me. As the ship came closer, I found that the occupants were a boy and an old man. They offered me a ride so I took it, and we sailed into the mysterious yet lovely sky of the universe. The tune came again. It faded as the ship and sky  do so as well. Then I woke up, and the dream was over. The lullaby. It sounded so familiar, and I knew that if I look hard enough  I might find it. So I did, and this was the lullaby:

close your eyes as you listen to this, and empty your mind. 
Dream away, no one's stopping you..

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

WSC!! Jakarta oh Jakarta.. Part 1

     It stands for the World's Scholar's cup. Believe it or not folks, i joined this competition even though I have the brain capacity of half an actual scholar. The World Scholar's Cup is an international tournament consisting of three rounds; the regional rounds, the global rounds, and the final rounds. It all begins when a certain english teacher named Mr Jim came to 7B (my homeroom class), and talked to me about the tournament. He brought a brochure with him, and as I flip through the glossy pages of the brochure, I could only think of two things; 1,"what's with all the pictures of alpacas printed in this brochure?", and the second thought was; wow, I'm not qualified for this. My bestfriend Amanda, was of course, more than qualified to join this tournament. "Wow, that sounds fun. A scholar's bowl, a multiple choice test, debate rounds, and a writing competition all in one," Amanda said as she flipped through the brochure. I, on the other hand, was trying to slip away and buy some food in the cafeteria, but Mr.Jim kept on insisting my consideration. "Of course I'll consider it! It sounds so exciting," I said, faking the excitement.
    Yea, maybe I'll tell my parents about it, I thought, but me joining a tournament for scholars? I doubted it. Despite what they say about asians, I am not a genius despite my chinese blood. Nevertheless, I told my parents about the tournament and they said I should join if I want to. The next day, Amanda asked me about the competition. "What did your parents say, Cher?" she asked. "um.. They approved, but only if I want to," I replied half-heartedly. Amanda persuaded me to join the tournament, and she was very persuasive and in the end we did join, and so did another handfull of junior highschool students.
     We were all divided into groups of three, and I was in a team with Amanda and Michelle from grade 8. Mr Jim provided us with training sessions after school every day. "Guys, you should check out their website, there you can find materials for the tournament," Mr Jim informed us. I was surprised. I didn't know that we should study from materials given by the tournament. "You should divide tasks between your group members so that you can cover more area. If I'm not mistaken, there's a science resource, a history resource, a literature, music, art,film, and poetry resource," Mr Jim continued. My jaw literally dropped. "Mr, don't forget the current affairs resource and special area resource," said Gregory, an incredibly smart student from grade 7A. I looked at his backpack. It was full of resources that he already printed. I was amazed. Gregory was really serious about the tournament. After the afterschool session (we did some debate practice), Amanda asked me about the resources I would like to cover.
   "Art! I answered spontantly. As you might have known, I really like art, and I thought "How difficult can a material about art be?" At home I downloaded the art resource from the website and I might as well bang my head really hard unto my desk. The art resource, consisting of 60 something pages was nothing like how I imagined it. It was full of paintings I didn't recognize, and some stuff about art connoisseurs. I bit my lip as I scrolled down the resource. "Huh, the Scream. I know that. The Automat, Edward Hopper. That looks familiar. Well at least I recognize a few," I thought. I decided to read the rest of the resource that night, but I am nothing but a master procrastinator, so I spent the night watching season 4 of Chuck.
  We only had 1 week to prepare ourselves for the tournament, which was held on Sinarmas World Academy BSD. Time seemed to pass by very quickly, and before I knew it, the tournament day came. It was Saturday (I forgot the date), and my stomach felt very queasy. The night before I was considering whether to come or not. The day before during the usual after school rehearsal, a competitor from grade 8 decided to forfeit because he strongly believed that we were not ready yet. I didn't blame him. He was right, we were not ready. Our time was too little, and most of us (including me) hadn't read most of the resources. I felt that I wasn't ready. I was afraid that I might lose and the fee to join this tournament might go to waste. But I had to come, at least for the sake of my teammates. I dressed in my usual school uniform (Mr Jim told us to dress formally) and my parents drove me to the school. There I met competitors from my school. We sat and read some of the resources that we had not covered. I observed my surroundings. The lounge room where we were sitting at was filled with students from lots of different schools, dressing formally, and re-reading their resources. They looked very professional, as if they had been doing this for years and years. My stomach lurched." If I were to compete against these people, I'm gonna lose. Bad," I thought to myself.
  At about 9 am or so, we competitors were escorted to the school auditorium. Unlike the auditorium in my school (actually it is not actually an auditorium. It is a gymnasium, but it does the trick, so we just use what we got), the auditorium in Sinarmas was air-conditioned, brightly lit, had lovely maroon seat covering, and a massive stage and podium. Us competitors from Laurensia sat next to each other, and from where I was sitting I could see men running around. One person caught my eye, a guy with dreadlocks in a purple shirt and trousers. I couldn't keep my eyes off his dreadlocks. They were a light shade of brown, and they resembled a somewhat bedraggled mop. What really got my attention was how he fitted a pen and a list of some sort inside his dreadlocks. He also managed to fashion an ornate hairdo by using his dreadlocks as a hair band to keep his mop of hair away from his eyes.
  We waited for a while, until finally the man with the dreadlocks came to the podium and said some stuff about a great assistant who won't be joining next year. I learnt that the man in the dreadlocks is named Zac. Then the founder of the tournament showed up. He was pretty tall, his brown hair was perfectly coiffed, and he was dressed very neatly in a tuxedo. He was way younger than how I imagined he would be, and he approached the podium. He produced a fluffy white thing from his pocket and clung it around the microphone. Moments later it was revealed that the object was in fact an alpaca doll. The man introduced himself. He said that his name was Daniel something. I couldn't remember at that time, all that I remembered was that it started with the letter B (in my defense it was a very difficult surname, and his surname is actually Berdichevsky)"Welcome, scholars!" he said. He had a surprisingly low voice, and I strongly believed that he was not a full-blood American despite his American accent and western looks. The founder welcomed us warmly and told us that the tournament is not a competition, it is a festival of learning. Zac kept on speed-walking back and forth from the stage to the backstage, taking alpaca plushies from the backstage and putting them under the podium on the stage.
    "As Zac and I and the team traveled around the globe, we collect alpaca plushies from almost every country we visited," Daniel said. He pulled a camel plushie from the podium. "The Egyptian alpaca," he said. Some of us started giggling. "The Taiwanese alpaca," he said as he pulled a fluffy pink alpaca-looking plushie from the podium. He continued this for a while and it was hilarious so I started to giggle along with the crowd. "And last but not least, the Japanese alpaca!" Daniel exclaimed as he pulled a Totoro plushie. Everybody laughed. The plushie was adorable, and to this day it is still my favorite kind of alpaca. Then Zac informed us about that day's schedule and the technical stuff.
   After that we were sent off to our first round; the collaborative writing. It was held in the air-conditioned gymnasium. I was pretty excited because I like writing. We sat in our groups and they gave us a booklet each. In our groups, we were to choose a topic to write about from several options in the booklet. After a long moment of consideration, I finally settled with a topic which was "Wall-E knows what love is."
  "Who needs pencils?" a blond girl in a sherlock holmes-ish ghetto asked loudly. "If you need them, please raise your hands up in the air," she continued. "Please raise your hands higher, or I'm gonna cry!" she announced. Some of us laughed, and she started to run back and forth to distribute the pencils. "I'm starting to like this girl," I thought. I saw her when I was in the auditorium, and back then I thought she was one of the competitors. She was actually a member of the WSC team. The girl introduced herself before the writing started. We learnt that her name was Bunnie. It was an adorable name. We were given 50 minutes to write our essay. When time was up, I finished my writing and was quite satisfied with it. After the writing round, we were given 30 minutes for bathroom break and snack break, and we were to return to the gymnasium afterwards for the scholar's challenge. During the break, us competitors from Laurensia asked each other about what we wrote about and how did it went. We went to the lobby to grab some snacks, and found Mr Jim and Mr Chris, both our coaches from Laurensia. We told them about the round, and they told us to just have fun. 30 minutes were up, and we returned to our seats in the gymnasium.
 The scholar's challenge, consisting of 125 multiple choice questions, was very difficult. I didn't read most of the resources, so I needed to rely on my sense of logic. My palms were sweating, and in my head I could clearly hear the ticking of the watch that the competitor in front of me wore. The questions which I could answer with absolute confidence could be counted with fingers. There was something about narcolepsy in the science section, and the only thing that popped into my head was none other than Mr. Benedict, a fictional character from my favorite book, The Mysterious Benedict Society. At least it helped in some way. The book taught me a lot about narcolepsy. Time passed by ever so quickly, and in what seemed like 15 minutes, Bunnie gave us the 25 minute warning. My heart seemed to leap out of my chest. I had only reached question 86, and I had like 30 something questions left to answer. So I took a deep breath and rushed to finish them all in time. "5, 4, 3, 2, 1! AND TIME," Bunnie counted down. I finished circling the last number when time was up. I breathed a sigh of relief when the papers were collected. I looked at Amanda, and she gave me an uncertain look. It must have been difficult for her too,I thought. I looked at a frustrated Gregory. "How was it?" I mouthed to Gregory.
"I only knew 70% of the answers," Gregory mouthed.
I was not surprised, I knew that Gregory was incredibly smart. Well I've got nothing to lose, I thought. I didn't expect to win, so I won't be upset if I didn't.

   The Challenge was over, and that could only mean one thing; the debate rounds are coming. There were 3 debate rounds. We were given a list of rooms where each debate round would take place, and also the side we would be debating (either affirmative or negative). Amanda, Michelle, and I headed to our room. My hands were sweating, and there was a nauseating feeling inside my stomach. My mouth became pasty and dry. I dreaded the debate rounds. I did so badly during the practice the day before, and I am far from confident to debate against another school. I knew that I would do badly, and knowing that I found it hard to breathe. I was scared, and I could only hope for the best as I took deep and slow breaths.

 competitors from Santa Laurensia Junior Highschool
 Sinarmas World Academy. Yep, this is a school.
 daniel and the japanese alpaca.
zac and his dreadlocks.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

a few things that makes me smile

rainbow colored pancakes.

Adorable alpaca plushies

confusing bookmarks

nice scrapboards

awkward pics of your friend

colorful hula-hoops

group huddles

awkward poses

and of course, epic light saber battles.