Tuesday, December 14, 2010


I am strong
I am strong
I am strong

Who am I kidding ?

Au revoir...

Thursday, December 02, 2010

The Good Die Young

A friend of mine passed away last night. If anything it's proof of the fragility of life and the difference that a second could make. 

It's so often that we read about yet another accident. Yet another young life. We mourn, oh yes we do. We mourn for a life cut short, for aspirations lost and potential buried. But then household chores beckon, life calls, and then we forget. All because those facts, figures, names and places mean nothing. Abstract. But no, these alphabets strung together to create a name on print and paper lived. That faceless name laughed with friends and family, he had dreams, he had goals. But life spins its cruel web and blows out the flame. 

Two years ago today I lost a brother. At times like these there are no comforting words, no justification. There are only prayers for strength, and making a conscious effort to ensure that every second in one's life is used to the fullest, lived to the highest and filled with as much joy as possible before the fickle candle of life gets snuffed out. 

For him and for you I dedicate this poem : 

Until We Meet Again


Each morning when we awake
we know that you are gone.
And no one knows the heartache
As we try to carry on.

Our hearts still ache with sadness
and many tears still flow.
What it meant to lose you,
No one will ever know.

Our thoughts are always with you,
your place no one can fill.
In life we loved you dearly,
In death we love you still.

There will always be a heartache,
and often a silent tear,
But always a precious memory
Of the days when you were here.

If tears could make a staircase,
And heartaches make a lane,
We'd walk the path to heaven
And bring you home again.

We hold you close within our hearts,
And there you will remain,
To walk with us throughout our lives
Until we meet again.

Our family chain is broken now,
And nothing will be the same,
But as God calls us one by one,
The chain will link again. 

Friday, November 19, 2010


I'm sure a lot of you are sick of me going on and on about Venice now but I promise this is the last post on it ... These are some of my favourite pictures 


*sigh sigh*

*sigh sigh sigh *

I have an obsession for doors ... as you will all soon discover ... 

Gondolier ! 

Gondola !! Both equally pleasing to the eye I might add .... 

Cartier ! And I had just come out of a church nearby thus the quick-fix scarf ....  

Golden lights .... so warm and fuzzily romantic 

I love statues ! Whee ! kiss kiss ! 


The little island of Murano is one of intrigue, mystery and subtle wonder. I mentioned going to Venice in the last post. What I left out was that I also had to chance to take a water taxi over to the island of Murano where I was simply spellbound !! I mean, just look at it ! It's vibrant and sassy and colourful and everything about it screams life and joy. 

Murano island is also infamous for its glass. In fact, it's world renowned as a glass paradise. From fragile, intricate trinkets and knick knacks to bold, brazenly attractive ornamental pieces, the glass blowers and craftsmen have it all ! Being typically female, it was the glass jewelry that ultimately caught my eye. It fills you with wonder just looking at the designs that these skilled designers come up with. To say the least, I felt like a little kid in Wonderland. And psst, I got more than a few Murano pendants back as souvenirs. As much as I left little pieces of my heart there, I cherished the opportunity to bring home a little trinket encapsulated with wondrous memories.

Oh yes I definitely fell in love with Murano and the Venetian Lagoon. 

Stay tuned for more :) 

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


I want too many things in life. Way way too many things. It's time to

Sneak peek at Venice ... where I left little bits of my heart in quaint trattorias and narrow alleys .. 

Friday, November 12, 2010

Le Affair

I've been shamelessly stalking,
Skulking and lurking in the shadows,
Plagued with sleepless nights,

Eyes sparkling, 
Fingers itching, 
All senses on alert, 
Is this what they call *gasp* love ? 

Oh, what is it about books that makes my heart race so ?

I guess the thing I miss most is
The euphoria of being surrounded by books, books and more books,
The wild, rampant desire to just possess and possess,
And the unspoken understanding of being in the midst of kindred spirits,
All feeding on the same lust for paper and ink

Oh, my big bad wolf,
I wish and wish that I could huff and puff my way there,
Little piggy or not,
I'm signed, sealed, and delivered
to my fate of being love-bound, smitten and irrevocably obsessed with you ....

I am against using emoticons but this is a HUGE exception
MUMMY I WANNA GO !  ( ohmigosh-i-hope-no-prospective-employer-reads-this!!!!)
T.T .... T.T ..... T.T !!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Carpe Diem

There's just something so poetically beautiful about the simplicity of this song.

Why must we all wait till someone tells us we're at the end of our time before we learn to just seize the dang day

I want this.
I want everlasting.
I want no more talk of the future and endless promises.
I want the present.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

This One's for You

This is a post for one of the bestest people I've ever known. Perhaps somewhere in the milky way you'll come across this, From Me to You ........................

It's been almost a month since you've left. I haven't talked to anyone about this because how exactly does one go about telling someone about this emptiness in one's heart ? It's not something you discuss over a cup of coffee. Or something to pick up the phone and bawl over. How can it hurt to think about you and hurt even more not to think about you ? 

Days pass and I'm reminded of you. At times I smile, at times I laugh, at times a stray tear finds its way down my cheek. Thinking back, you've been able to do that all my life. 

I'll miss :

  • listening to your stories. You peppered my childhood with tales of war, love, sacrifice, laughter.
  • the way you chuck me under the chin although I'm no longer 5
  • the way you taught me cursive writing
  • quiet afternoons reading with you
  • rainy days listening to you playing the piano
  • running to your room during thunderstorms
  • and every time someone bullied me
  • how you laugh at my bad Hokkien , 'ang moh kia' you called me 
  • kissing you good night, me telling you to "Please shave ! " 
  • chocolates for Christmas
  • dancing on your toes 
  • pork bean soups
  • suppers with you 

You were always the first person I saw when I came back from school. You tied my hair for me when grandma could no longer do it, and I'm sorry I sulked whenever you didn't do it right. You were babysitter, designated driver, personal cook, bodyguard, advisor, confidante and best friend. All that and you never forced me to finish my vegetables ..... 

I guess that's the reason why the word 'grand' is there in grandpa

" I want to see you graduate, be at your graduation. I really do " 
" Christmas. I'll be back. Wait for me. I promise. " 

I never told you this, but you're the apple of my eye too. 

Sunday, October 10, 2010

I just wanna have some fun
Is that wrong ?

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

*insert clever title*

Deja vu :
I see my dreams flying out the window.
How many times has this got to happen before I learn
STOP dreaming.
Reality sucks

Saturday, September 04, 2010

I pray

Today I pray not for myself. I'm dedicating this post to the people who need a little prayer now and then. A little boost in their day, a lift in their spirit and a spring in their steps.

Today I pray for people like Kristian Anderson and his family.
Today I pray for the earthquake victims in New Zealand.
Today I pray for peace
Today I pray for calm, strong hearts
Today I'll pray for you

Rachel's Birthday Video from Kristian Anderson on Vimeo.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Hell hath no fury

At times I loathe being female. It's just such a tiring role to play. Being surrounded by females makes things much more worse.

I don't get a  lot of things in this world. The way people clamour for fame and glory and go through all sorts of despicable ways to attain the duo. 

If you want to use me, fine. That's your prerogative. But I reserve the right to detest you and group you all the way down down there together with the grub and the muck of the earth. Drop off the face of the earth and see if I care ? 

The next time you try to study with a fever, headache and a blocked nose whilst insensitive bastardos pester you for things aimed at attaining their own goals , AND you manage to hold your composure steady - I applaud you and will duly nominate you for the Nobel Peace Prize or something. equally noble because it is just not humanly possible. 

The world is going to the dogs. That's the sad fact. Nobody cares about anyone else anymore. 

Screw tact ! It's the cold, bare truth from now on. If you don't make your own effort, don't expect others to clean up the mess you left behind. You and your trail of regrets shall haunt you forevermore....or at least until another idiot comes along to sweep it all up. Rest assured, that person won't be me. Capisce

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Gene pool

Conversations with the father unit ... 

[9:37:51 PM] Billy Chia: macky has tat key
[9:38:06 PM] Billy Chia: macky is the pet name for josh pc
[9:38:23 PM] Billy Chia: nokky is my e61
[9:38:41 PM] Billy Chia: lappy is my toshiba
[9:39:33 PM] Billy Chia: ashpy is the "new" acer
[9:40:08 PM] Billy Chia: yrs lappygirl and nettygirl
[9:41:08 PM] Joanna: wat the ....
[9:41:11 PM] Joanna: lol !

Sigh, and they say it's high time I grew up !! ..... I have the coolest parents :P

Thursday, August 05, 2010

When God speaks ...

you step back at the astounding glory of the Lord

I admit to being a faithless Christian.  I'm a scatterbrained child. I panic way too easily. I cry too easily, I get angry fast, I forget equally fast. I'm vulnerable to hurt, I care too much. I get down, I get emotional, I get morose. I've been annoying and irritating.

Was on my regular blog hops ... and suddenly heard this song. It's the ONE song that keeps playing out of the blue when I least expect to stumble upon it ... and every time, I break down ..

Oh ye of little faith !

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Enough with that !

They say growing up can be a pain. 

Perhaps I'm still a child. Perhaps I'm silly enough that I'll be eaten up whole the moment I'm thrown into the shark pools of the world. Idealism does not a good match for realism make ... 

It's a scary feeling , this. This never knowing who's true, what's real, whom to believe and to try to look through the masks that we all don. It's a huge blow in this dream I've weaved in my ignorance. To be lost for words and yet have so many things pooling around in an over-cluttered mind. I no longer know who you are ..... 

I pray for God's guidance, for wisdom and the strength to pull through the greatest odds. Things will work out, they always do ... 

There will come a time when cotton candy transitions from being a kid's treat to cavity causing devil clouds... perhaps that's what growing up is all about.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

No dancing shoes have touched these dusty floors ..

This epitomizes in song what my heart would never admit ...

Are they laughing "at or with me"
Ah baby those are such great shoes
And I think that I'm so happy now
And I think this is a better you

Oooooooo ooooh
Are they laughing at or with me
Oooooooo ooooh
Why can't we just say what we mean

People are just trying to fit in
But is there something telling you
You can't trust anyone in this town
Ah baby those are such great shoes

Oooooooo ooooh
Are they laughing at or with me
Oooooooo  ooooh
Why can't we just say what we mean

Don't put your money where your mouth is baby
We don't want to see you choke
Nobody's joking around here anymore
Nobody's broking any high scores
No dancing shoes have touched these dusty floors
For such a long long time
For such a long long time
For such a long time

Oooooooo ooooh
Are they laughing at or with me
Oooooooo ooooh
Why can't we just say what we mean

Monday, July 26, 2010

Tramlines Festival

The last weeked, Sheffield hosted the Tramlines Festival, a celebration of music, art and the freedom of expression. Being a great fan of music, I just had to go and have a look at all these wonderful talent in town. How fortunate for me !

Unfortunately, most of the hip events had queues running to the end of the earth, so I gave up waiting for rock concerts and went instead to explore the wondrous food booths near the Eye of Sheffield. Oh food galore !! I shall take a back seat now and let the pictures do the talking ...

Exotic meats from around the world ... I tried the Kangaroo burger. The first and last time ... I kept thinking of baby kangaroos and adorable little creatures ..... urgh !!

A hog getting roasted. Couldn't bear to eat this either :( I should really just go vegan !

Yummy looking meringues ! Too bad I'm not a fan of the sweet stuff ... these looked real tempting 

Olives ! Olives ! Olives ! Of all kinds ! Have I mentioned OLIVES?? haha .. delicioso !

This. Was. Fantastic ! Dutch Pancakes with Baileys and Cream. Oh gosh .. be still my heart 

Tartiflette : A potato and bacon dish. Supposedly and Alpine favourite. Was so-so only though 

The funkiest, gorgeous-est, yummiest milkshake shop ... MadCow Milkshake. They have over 185 different flavours. I had the Jamaican Ginger Cake. Oh boy .. it tasted like blended cake ... good stuff, good stuff ..

And to save the best for last .... 

A really groovy, fantastic band from London. Their rendition of Marilyn Manson's Sweet Dreams was just feet-tapping, head-nodding, good ! 

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Undisclosed desires

At times I sit down and wonder what life would have been if I had chosen the road not taken rather than the path of least resistance. I wonder if life would have been any different if I hadn't stood by and allowed my childhood dreams to flit away on the wings of insecurity. Perhaps I would have loved a life flirting with risk and dating danger. 

After all, Master Yoda says : 
"Do or do not .. there is no try"

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

More than just a game for two

Classes beckon,
Assignments scream, 
Early days with sprinkles of,  
Late nights fueled by caffeine laced diets,
But tummies, oh tummies have to be filled 
and ears need as much pampering as the soul ... 

When east and west meets adventurous taste buds .... you get "Kimchi Broccoli Salad" 
( that's real kimchi !! ... from the awesome-st Asian grocer we accidentally stumbled upon, more on that later ... ) 

Coupled with oven baked fish fillet and a dollop of crumbly cheese  .. 
Fuss free dinners are yummy. There was ice cream too but as with all rules that govern the universe, ice cream and sweet treats wait for no (wo)man's camera .. 

Ear candy is food for the soul, and Olivia Ong , a chinese Singaporean singer has been feeding me generous portions of feel goodness with her lilting voice ... very easy listening, not exactly bossa nova, but comforting nonetheless. Do have a listen. A few of my favourite renditions on time old classics ... 

Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Asymmetry of Interdependence

It's the weekend yet again and I'm back for my now once a week posts. Friendships, bonds and interdependences are never fair, never symmetrical and I guess there comes a point where you just have to try to balance yourself upon the sharp ridges, concave dips and jagged terrains of relationships .... 

Yesterday was a swell day. Left early in the morning ( or relatively early for a weekend...:P ) to go marketing for goodies to cook for dinner. It's been an almost weekly ritual now for a few friends and I to gather around for dinner every Saturday, good to give a twist to my almost staple diet of sandwiches and salads ... 

Awesome roasted chicken 

Shallots, soy sauce and iceberg lettuce .. ah, tastes like home

And I made bruschetta ! Sauteed chestnut mushrooms, peppers, and garlic toasted on crisp baguette liberally spread with herb butter topped with mozzarella .. see mum, I haven't blown up any kitchens yet :P 

This on the other hand was just plain awful. Had to add lots of lemon juice in it .. 

And that's a wrap folks ! 

I hope you guys had a good weekend ! 

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Whitby part 2

Continuing on from the last post .. the town of Whitby is full of quaint little shops that provide a delightful haven for tourists, hungry tummies, tired feet and a sight for sore eyes... 

I have a fascination for all the names of the places here in England. Whitby I realized, doesn't deviate from what appears to be a tradition of naming establishments after animals ... . 

The Magpie's Kitchen ... a heaven for people like my mum because this place has floors and floors of tableware and kitchen accessories ... 

The Dolphin 

The Black Horse

We had lunch at The Magpie, an eatery that came highly recommended but unfortunately our box of the infamous Whitby fish and chips was slightly overrated ... at least the cod was very fresh though ... or maybe it's just the fact that fish and chips just isn't my chosen bite ... hmm  

Candy shops provide an endless source of temptation for sweet tooths and overgrown children like yours truly .. 

Hehe ... this was a shop selling hand made soaps that looked good enough to eat don't you think ? 

The shops here have got jolly good names too ... 

The Jolly Sailors 

The Moon and Sixpence 

And ... this one here's Naughty but Nice ... 

Now, we come to the part of Whitby that I personally loved best .... 

I <3 independent bookshops .... and nice ladies who allow me to take photos in them .. 

This was literature-ly my stairway to heaven ... 

I only had time to take these snapshots because my friend pulled me away from the shop.. but looking at this photo now ... I spot Middlesex and Pigtopia !! Arrgh ... and these books were going for 60% off the RRP . 

and more ... 

Needless to say, my souvenirs from Whitby were ... 

I'm incorrigible I know .. *inserts appropriately repentant doe-eyed expression ... *