Thursday, April 24, 2008

End of 2nd Semester


As Diana, Zaim and I were talking before; we can't believe that it is already the end of our 2nd semester at INTI. It is hard especially for me to believe that we've reached the second end. I guess part of it is because of our very short break - that I'm currently trying to enjoy - which makes me feel as if we're just on another mid-term break.

Anyway, as I look back I really can't believe it that I am still the same person I was on the first day (of 2nd semester, not of college). I can't believe that it is possible for the same person to be on two extreme ends after only a short period of time. I remember how on the first day of college I was almost crying myself to sleep. But I'm obviously not crying anymore today. I remember how on the first week of college I hated a really good friend of mine to death, but at the end of semester I dedicated a poem to the same person for standing by me through my unstable periods of thick and thin. And I especially remember how on the first day of college I had a massive crush on the Social Science Pride catch but now, he IS mine :)

As Diana and Zaim concluded, this semester's ending is quite subtle and a bit 'tergantung' because we didn't go through the same drama we went through last year. Nonetheless I have to say that we did have another memorable month together for us to cherish forever :)


BTN...not that bad lar.

Day 1

Arrived at Kem Bumi Jati, Jalan Kebun, Shah Alam around 2 pm with Sofiya. The rest had arrived 4 hours earlier. Hehe. Didn’t do much after registration. Just went lepak-ing around after checking out the rooms. I took the top bunk, Pia took the lower bunk. Later in the afternoon during the Pembukaan or something like that my friends called out my name for the Timbalan Penghulu Wanita. And then that night was just kind of an introduction thing.

Day 2

Woke up early for Subuh. Went for perbarisan which was a bit disappointing to me. I mean, yeah, I hate perbarisan but I expected more than just “Baris, ke kanaaaaaan ‘sing!” My job as Timbalan Penghulu Wanita was supposed to be during that time but I did nothing. Hehe :p Then the rest of the day was dedicated to the perbentangan kertas kerja. Like what the rest of my friends said, we agreed that the first and third speaker were okay. But the second speaker…eh. In the afternoon we had our physical test. I thought I won't be able to do it but it's not hard la. Still, I’m not telling you my physiological age!

Day 3

After the morning perbarisan we had our 2 km run. It was okay for me as expected. I mean, I know how long 2 km is since that’s the distance I had to walk from school in the burning sun for three years before I got my car. I ran non-stop until I started to feel like I’m running out of breath and that’s when I continued by walking. While I was running though I was trying to imagine Him needing my help (cewah!) and when I did arrive he was waiting for me at the gate :) That day was the first day of LDK. It wasn’t as I thought. It’s just like a speech by the facilitator (as us groupmates discussed) but in a smaller group. My group was not that talkative so I really respect the facilitators’ patience. But there were some like our leader, TM, and Yeow who were really ridiculous in a fun way la :p TM was so ridiculous that he just can’t leave Him and I alone when we were talking after the 'minum malamthat night. Aiyo…

Day 4

We had our second day of LDK on this day. I admit that I was a bit emotional during the first few sessions but I’m trying my best now to just take it as opinions and nothing more. But I have to clarify that I’m only emotional because politics is something close to me. For example if you love your parents so much you will get emotional if someone talks bad about them, no? But later it got better la. And during the logo-creating session I felt like killing myself when I shouted mine! Malu! En Zairi must have thought that I love food more than I love my country. Huhu. Later we went for our kembara through the ladang kelapa sawit. And like people said, “Kalau dah jodoh tu jodoh la,” because my group (Group 14) were coupled with His group (Group 7) :)) It was nice la even though the ‘halangan’ were just a few dirty parit. I miss those times I had to go into the jungle alone at night during my high school camps. Now THAT’s a challenge. Then later that night during Isya’ it was a bit scary la for only Kero and I were at the surau as the lights went on and off. But then my heart beat a little faster when I realized who was Imam for the night :)) After LDK all of us went studying for the next day’s exam.

Day 5

The last day. The exam was okay but a bit f***ed up la since almost 98% of what we read DID NOT come out. That’s the thing. The whole camp was okay in a sense that as a whole it was quite neutral until came time for the exam - it was very obvious which stand we HAVE to take. Not to mention that I was snoozing 40% of the time in the hall. It's not my fault! The condition was just perfect for me to go into my dreamless sleep… Anyway, almost immediately after that the buses arrived. I was supposed to be in the bus that shall arrive later but since everyone else was running for the buses on the basis of 'siapa cepat die dapat', so did Pia and I :) We arrived at INTI around 1.30 pm and I went home around 3.30.

Conclusion: The whole camp was not that bad. It was a bit dry though than what I expected as a ‘camp’. But as Lils and I concluded, wherever there’s food and bed, the two of us can survive :p


Monday, April 14, 2008

Pictures From Diana

My Islamic Studies groupmate: Me, Zaim, and Bai.

My trial group member, doing our last minute work :p

My number one supporter.

Diana and her Secret Recipe... :p

Another picture of Diana and me camwhoring.

And my notty picture as Pia tried to kiss me. Hehe. Kidding!



Most of you know that I have this deep affection of the place I currently called home. You guys know how I always talk up Kuala Lumpur like it’s the best place ever to be on this planet. But like Diana’s response to my entry similar to this one, she said that it’s the familiarity that draws me towards it. Perhaps. But today I would like to talk more on how I am proud and glad that I came from where I came from because of the people.

Like I’ve previously mentioned, the part of KL that I came from is not that of the new KL. It’s not anywhere close to Bangsar or Damansara or maybe even Subang Jaya. But from where I came from, there’s this mix feeling of modernization and traditionalism. And I guess with the addition of the amazing job my parents did on raising me, I now know how to appreciate both. I mean, all this time as I was growing up my parents never once forget to remind and to show me the hard life that others are living at the same time giving me the best life they can afford.

The best example I love to give people is the one and only, Food. Even though my parents take me to those fancy restaurants, they also brought me to mamaks and also to gerais scattered around our area. Maybe like I said just now, I guess my parents want for my brother and me to experience both. And me, I love both. I learnt how to appreciate expensive food at the same time how to make full use of not-so-expensive food without complaining. They taught us it is not wrong to really indulge in food once in a while (or often, in my case) as long as we remember that somewhere out there are people who can’t even afford a plate of rice. That’s why my dad loves to say, “Fuh, one coffee costs RM10. The laborers at my site work ten hours a day for a mere RM10.” But when he said that, he's not implying that he disapproves of me spending on food. Instead he’s just reminding me to be grateful. But while we can afford it, it’s okay.

Besides food, there’s also the shopping part. See, sometimes my friends and I can spend close to a thousand per person shopping in a day. I mean, we do live in KL where KLCC is just ten minutes away. We can’t help it. But again, I’m glad for the company God sends me. Although my friends and I can spend one whole day raising KLCC’s income, we have no problem whatsoever going to Giant the other day and raise Giant’s income. And it’s not just the people I grew up with. I met a few other KL-ites (one in particular) when I started college and he is also like the rest of us. He has the money. He can buy a shirt costing RM200 out of his back-pocket if he wants to. But he doesn’t. Simply because when you have the confidence, you don’t need others' approval based on your lifestyle. But then, if that lifestyle gave you inner joy feel free to continue :)
In conclusion, this is another reason why I love KL and the people living in it. You can throw us into a remote village and we won’t complain a bit because the fact is, old KL is one of the original Malay kampongs. But you can also throw us into the middle of a world-class event and we would also know how to conduct ourselves. And I would like to take this opportunity to thank our old-ER parents who kept their traditionalism intact while they were raising us :)


Boarding School

I’ve always wanted to talk about this topic but I’m afraid it would cause some kind of…uproar because I know there’s a really fine line about this topic that no person shall go over. But I can’t help it anymore after hearing what a few people have to say. I guess if I want to be the better person I should just swallow my ego and let them think what they want. But then, it is as if saying you can think of me as a thief (which is a lie) without me correcting you because the thinking is 'you are free to think of me however you want.' I don't want that. I know it is unfair for me to judge a person if that person doesn't know me. So to be fair to the others, I'll give him the chance to get to know me. Therefore, I would like to take the time today to talk about why I didn’t go to a boarding school. Before I go any further (and you read any longer), I would like to remind you that this is my personal experience and my personal opinion. My opinion and yours would not need to be the same but that doesn't mean one is better over the other.

The story goes like this:

When I was in standard six, I really  wanted to go to a boarding school. Because being young and easily influenced by my surrounding, I accepted the idea wholeheartedly that a good student MUST go to a boarding school. Being my school’s top student, of course I felt I HAVE to go to one. I tried almost everything I can to get accepted into one (leaving my parents really confused of why I wanted to leave them so much at a young age.) Because I wanted to go so much that I kind of made a promise to myself that if I didn’t get accepted into one, I will not apply again when I’m in form three. It shows how determined I was to get that letter of acceptance then.

But God, as the best planner (as how my mum loves to call Him), knows better. He didn’t send me that acceptance letter. I couldn’t even explain the extent of my disappointment back then. I was my school top student, I was an active student, I can hell be independent. Why then did they not accept me? Some people tried to console me by saying that it’s because of my parents’ income. So I started to believe them eventually.

But an amazing thing happened to me after that. I entered a ‘Sekolah Harian’ and I experienced…life. There is just no other way to describe it. You go to school, the teacher taught you all that he/she can, you go back, and then you’re on your own. Okay I admit, so I did not have the chance to learn how to wash my own clothes or stuffs like that, but that aside, I do have to be independent. I know you're thinking I’m talking bull right now. How can I be independent when my parents are there all the time? Independence to me does not mean me being left on the street to mend on my own. Independence to me means that even after getting to know a few Mat Rempits, a couple of dropouts, one who got ‘accidentally’ pregnant and then some, I was still able to stay true to myself all along. That is independence. That is called adaptability. I was not surrounded by top scorers. I didn’t have teachers who stuck their noses in all my businesses. I just have people around me.

After experiencing and understanding all that, I appreciate more the saying, “It’s not where you study but HOW you study.” If people judge by my school exterior, they would think only losers would go to school there. Instead, I worked hard. I did my best in everything I do at school. I got good results. So when the time comes for us to apply again for a boarding school experience when I was in form three, I declined right there and then in the counselor’s office in front of everyone. (And it had nothing to do with my earlier promise to myself.) Until today I remember clearly what my counselor said, “Orang Melayu macam ni lah. Bila orang bagi peluang tolak. Bukan senang nak dapat peluang macam ni.” Me, being the partially cold-hearted person I am, his words didn’t had much impact on me. What opportunity? Is it opportunity for me to be surrounded by 'good' teachers? But then, who is to say that teachers from everyday schools are any less competent? Or is it the opportunity for me to get better informed about the world? But I have access to the Internet, television, and numerous newspapers if I stay at home. So tell me again, what opportunity?

The conclusion is, I stayed. For two years, I stayed at SMK SERI KERAMAT and worked my ass off on my own. My parents were there to give me moral support. My parents were also there to provide a comfortable environment for me to study. My friends were there when I wanted to do something crazy in order to make my five years at secondary school an experience I wouldn’t trade for the world. And I came out of it not just alive, but getting all that I prayed for. Now, where is it again stated that kids from a national schools are useless, lazy, and irresponsible, alas stuck where there are? You show me one good example, and maybe then we can argue about it.

Again, I would like to end this post by saying that this is what I went through. I TOTALLY understand if you enjoyed your time at boarding school. Hey, if everybody’s the same and everyone thinks like me, I wouldn’t be too happy either.


My Music...again.

You guys want to know how I love to summarize my whole nineteen years of living. Well, I love doing so by seeing my life through the lens of my music collection as the years went by. Since music plays a HUGE part in my life, it reflects almost exactly how I’ve grown as a person. I think I can tell that most of you are thinking, “Yeah music is important to me too!” Maybe it is, but for me, personally la, once you discriminate music, you’ve tainted the term ‘music-lover’.

Now let's see how I've evolved musically :)

When I was younger, I started by going through the whole teeny bopper phase of my life. (OMG I can’t believe that I’m telling the whole world this!) But to think again, I think every girl in the whole wide world must have gone through that phase in their life may it be New Kids On The Block or Westlife. Me? It's BACKSTREET BOYS ALRIGHT! :p I also went through the whole I-have-a-huge-celeb-crush-on-one-of-the-members-that-I-want-to-marry-him phase. Basically, this music reflects me back then. Simple, easy going, like-able. Some may despise this type of music for being too sugary sweet but at that time in your life, everything IS sugary sweet. Friends, school...everything was so simple.

From there I started to follow current music more closely. It’s like EVERYBODY has to know the new hot track out there. If you don’t, you’re considered from Mars or something. So yeah, that phase of my life is mainly about acceptance. It was about me wanting to be accepted by the general people.

But after that, like most teenagers, I went through my own rough phase. When I was 14 until 17 my collection of CDs included those by Blindspott, Trapt, Lostprophet, Foo Fighters and the kind. Not to forget that I was also so in love with Eminem’s sick and confused way of seeing this world. This was the time when I was against EVERYTHING. “The world is unfair! I’m not good enough! I hope this music could drown away all my problems!” How childish. Thank God I came out of it stronger as during that whole soul-searching period I learnt that God is the only one that’s able to take my pain away. Not some amazing guitar riffs.

Later as I got older – and as I got closer to Shila – I went back to my roots. It's because every time I would ride with her and her late father, their Kembara would be set to 105.7, Lite FM :p Amazing enough, I know almost all the songs played by that station! Shila and I would sing along to songs from the 70s and 80s and then it made sense. I grew up listening to those songs :) That’s when I realized how much cooler songs from those eras are compared to songs nowadays. Even after 30, 40 year, you can still appreciate the beautiful melody. Today’s songs? Just a few repeated beats, and ‘said’ words (the words weren’t even sung), and people actually go crazy over them. Twenty years from now you honestly think the people from the Music Academy would mention that kind of songs ah? I don’t think so. So with that mindset, I left my rock-chic phase far, far, behind me and go for more mellow songs. My reason? I’ve became more mellow myself.

But don’t freak out, I don’t immediately convert to Lite FM. I just went a step mellower – I converted to Mix FM. But then, after a few months listening to Mix FM, I got bored. There’s not much variety. So nowadays, I just listen basically to…anything. I guess you can say that I’ve come to be more comfortable with myself that no outside influence (i.e. musical influence) can change who I am ever again, nor will I get frustrated over music. Music has molded me to be who I am a long time ago. That’s why you won’t hear me undermine ANY other type of music now because I realized Syaza Farhana is actually a combination of a lot of genres, so why do I want to discriminate any part of it?

That was the old me, the old immature me :)


Some old stories

Okay, I think I owe it to you to explain why I haven’t updated my blog for a long time. Well, as those supposedly close to me, you - *pointing to you* yup, you – should know that I’m currently in the middle of my finals. That’s why I made a conscious decision to not go online except to download some stuffs starting from…well, since the last post *points downward.* Anyway, I think the least I could do is give a small recap of what I’ve been up to since the last post.

Well, after the whole World Religion debate thingy ended on that Wednesday, I went back home during the weekend to get ready for my three other presentations and also for my finals of course.

Islamis Studies:

See, on Tuesday I had my Islamic Studies presentation. I know it’s really nothing since it’s just three minutes but I only found out the afternoon before that there was a miscommunication between my group mates (Zaim and Bai) and me. So, I had to redo my points after getting back from my Trial meeting that night (I’ll talk more about that later). So anyway Zaim had actually went and met our Ustazah and requested for our group go on first. So yeah, Zaim was calling me over and over the next morning when I was about two minutes late. Zaim and Bai were amazing I got to say. And I’m not just saying that because they’re my group mates. Zaim of course is a good speaker and Bai, well; he was just natural and also naturally sarcastic. (“Anda tak nampak tapi gambar di belakang ini sebenarnya gambar dacing. Ya, dacing itu seimbang dan adil.” I got your sarcasm Baihaqi.) I on the other hand didn't really put much effort into this presentation as I stick to the original plan of each person saying only up to three minutes.

Politics Trial:

So, after that presentation was done, it’s time for my Politics Trial preparation. You see, I really love my group. SERIOUSLY. I mean, I know I was a bit critical earlier but even then I’ve just went with the flow. For me it is interesting that my group only started taking the Trial seriously on Sunday night - three nights before the actual thing - and we WON. And I’ve seen the other group meet up almost every night for hours and I have no idea what they were possibly discussing about. My group however is really a laidback one. We just had fun! :) (…Except for our ever-serious Mayor. Thank God you FINALLY realized that you’re not going to be thrown into jail :p) We enjoyed our character and that’s it! And I think it was a good move that we thought of ways to twist all the developments against us instead of denying everything because that’s what made our evidences strong, I think. So with only a few nights of actually preparing (and some fooling around and picture taking in the mid of it all) we went to the Trial confidently. It was so much fun! Our group was really funny! I guess it’s true what they said that it’s probably because our characters were really personal to Patty (ME! The polygamous person accused) and I think I did an okay job. I mean, I didn’t practice that much on it. I just went through my lines in my head a few times the night before and pray to God I’ll know what to do when the time comes. And I did! So the verdict is…WE WON! Go Defense! :))

World Religion Islam presentation:

Lastly, it was time for my Islam presentation for World Religion. It’s nothing, really. But I stupidly and unconsciously took the job of being ‘kind of’ the group leader so I have to make sure everything was okay. But when it was my time I just read from my notes. What much can I say about Modernism in Islam except that I TOTALLY disagree with our textbook. Islam IS flexible, regardless of time and place.

After all those assignments were done, it was finally time for me to focus on my finals. So since Thursday night, He accompanied me as we studied at the cafeteria below MPH so that’s what I did every night since. And then I had my Islamic Studies paper on Saturday. It was okay, not as hard as Zaim predicted! After the exam I was feeling bored so I called my mum and FORCED her to come to Nilai. So yeah, on Sunday they came :) But the night before that I was not feeling well. My whole body was warm and I shivered as the weakest wind struck me. So I want to take this opportunity to thank Him for His cough syrup and jacket that kept me company as I shivered my way to sleep that night. But as if that’s not enough, the next day I have to rosakkan my cell again and there goes RM80. And if THAT’s not enough, I have to accidentally cut myself with my shaver. Nice weekend, eh? But then on Monday it was my Macroeconomics paper. It was okay. It’s not as hard, but it’s not like I can sleep halfway or anything like that. So far there’s nothing for me to worry about…yet. Until come PHYSICS this Friday :(

Oh yeah, I got to add that I won’t be around long because after I’m done with my finals I’ll be going to the BTN camp thingy in Shah Alam with the rest of us. It’s for five days, from next Sunday to the coming Thursday. When I heard camp, I got to admit that I kind of look forward to it since I love going jungle trekking and all…until I saw the schedule. LDK! I hate LDK! All the talks, and the pembentangan and the sleepiness…I can totally see myself sleeping in the hall already. I just want to pass the test so that I can fly. So yeah, my REAL holiday will only start after that.

Sil! Dil! Iqa! Gathering time! NZ jom!


p/s: Oh, I would also like to add that my diet is officially over after I was dragged by ‘them’ to Secret Recipe three times in less than five days. Okay la, I may be exaggerating, they didn’t drag me, but point is, I’m yoyo-ing back to my previous weight.