Tuesday, 21 November 2006

Unending train ride

Sunday 19th November 2006

We arrived at the train depot, all packed and ready to go. Everyone's excited. Our first ever train ride in Australia! Dad unloads us and our carry-on luggages from the car, and drives off to park his car on the train. We enter the depot- looks big. I sit down on one of the seats with my brother, watch over the luggages (apt to walk away by themselves when unwatched). My bag pack was starting to weigh me down. WHAT did I pack again? Oh- nothing but solid gold bars I believe.

Waiting for the train to arrive! Church service started 1 hour ago... I get up and walk around, looking at all the train models and information on which carriage and train was built in which era, blah, blah, blah... (not my kind of thing)Getting so bored. The second hand slows down. One minute seems an hour. I grab at the closest magazine, which happened to be a spotlight catalogue on the december sales! (I failed to bring a book because the only ones I hadn't read yet were soft covered, and I was afraid of damaging them- yeah, I'm THAT nice with my books.) :D Wait.


Wait. I spend my time tracing out bus routes from my house to UWA. (They have the bus maps and timetables there.) Wait.

Finally! The announcement to board the train sends us all packing. I lug my gold bar filled bag pack along, and board the 3rd class carriage right at the back of the train. The interior setup looks much like the economy plane setup, except that the chairs are bigger. My seat number happens to be an aisle chair. Some other lucky dude got the window seat! I hope that no one comes, so that I get both chairs to myself.

Train leaves the Perth station. An elderly man got the window seat beside me. awwww... Now I can't even take pictures out of the window- not that there's anything to take, really- my last resort out of utter boredom.

I start writing. I fill in all my interview forms, explaining why I want to do music, why I picked this course, and what background experience I have so far. Once done, I pick up writing my story. I don't get to far, however, as my brothers (they can't sit still!) want to go to the lounge room to play cards and have lunch. Sigh. I have to go or be dragged there. I'd rather walk there with my dignity.

The movie starts! At least there is something to occupy me (and my brothers too)! It's some story about catwoman and beauvalline cream or something like that. The cream that, if you keep using, your skin will be so beautiful, but turn hard as marble, but if you stop using, will scar your skin for life. What trash. But I enjoyed the 'fighting scenes'. :)

The movie ends. Have to find my own entertainment. We discovered that we didn't bring a pack of cards! So, no scum. Grrr. We played Uno and Quiddler instead. Fast forward >>>

Dinner time. Bread, tuna and cucumber- again. We just had that for lunch. Mum must have brought the entire tuna section of coles along.

So bored. Nothing to do. My body feels weird too. I've ben cooped up too long. Walking from our carriage to the lounge on the next carriage doesn't give one enough exercise for the day.

Another movie. This one is more interesting. It's called Take the lead, I think. It's about the life of a professional ballroom dancer, Pierre Dulane, teaching his art to the public school's delinquents. No one thought it would work- even the students. The motivation and success only came with the dancing competition only a few weeks away. I liked this video better than the other.

We arrive in Kalgoolie after one exhausting day of travel. We don't get to go out, however, as Dad feels badly, and has thrown out all over the shower area. Yuck. I'm definitely not going to shower in the train. He looks so pale- even worse than me.

I fall asleep lying down, since my fellow passenger on my row went out to catch a bus tour to see the famous Kalgoolie SuperPit. (Since my family's been there before, we decide to stay in.) He came back in, and I woke up- my first proper sleep. i was lying down on his seat too! Lights off, and journey begins again.

Monday 20th November 2006

Ooooh- my neck and shoulder hurts. CRRRACKKK! ouch. Check time- huh?! Only 2am!!! awwww..... doze off.

Same procedure as before

Same procedure. The train is still dark.

Lights on. People rushing for the wash room. Including me.

Breakfast. Bread and fruits. We've run out of tuna. :O

Games. It gets boring after awhile, so we watch the train assistants out of the corner of our eyes to see if there is going to be a movie or not. No. nothing happens.

Games. Fast forward>>>

Lunch. I know- it's such a boring existence. Breakfast, lunch and dinner. Games in between. I believe studying would be much preferred, actually.

Games. I have to take care of Daniel. My parents want to sleep. Children have the tendency to become positively hyper when told their parents want to rest! No exception with my brother.

We arrive in Cooke town! It's a boiling 49 degrees out here! I took a few steps outside to snap a picture shot, and then beat a quick retreat back to the cooling confines of a train. This time, the duration of the stay in Cooke is only long enough to refill the train's tank of water and petrol. Nobody wants to stay out there in this heat!

Movie time! This time we watched a really cute cartoon called 'Hoodwinked'. Very enjoyable and interesting. :)

Movie ends. Everybody feels horrible. Everywhere aches and hurts, and we are all sick of the games. Nevertheless, we enter the living room to play Uno. There is a Duech family on board the same carriage as us, and we invite them -the kids- to play. Their english is limited, but we have a lot of fun trying to converse with the improper sign language, and broken english. This is definitely the best part of the entire train ride. Another boy, Alex, sees us having all this fun, and decides to join in, so we let him. He is actually 6, tall for his age, and quite intelligent. But his mother spoils him too much. He sits down at our games table, and munches 2 huge snickers bars by himself while playing the Uno with us. After that, he tells his mum that he wants another snickers bar:

Alex: Mum, I want another Snickers.

His mum: After dinner, Alex.

Alex: I want another Snickers!

His mum: No alex, after dinner.

Alex getting really whinny: But I want another Snickers NOW!

His mum: I said after your dinner!

Alex: I want it NOW!!!!!

The mother remains silent, and I thought she won the battle of wills until after she leaves and returns with another bar of snickers! We are trying not to gape at them, while gaping at them. I don't believe it! The mother is overfeeding the already fat child! A 6 year old child looks like a 9 year old! He reminds me of Augustus Gloop in Charlie and the Chocolate factory, with the same temperement as Veruca Salt. Unbelievable. As I said before, Alex is smart. Only the is stuffed so full of sweets that he cannot possibly think! Ugh, some parents...

Anyway, when Alex leaves for his dinner, we quickly catch the opportunity to go back to the carriage with the Deuch family. They teach us some common duech words by pointing and gesturing to objects around them. Hilarious. Me must have roused the whole carriage with laughter.

Alex returns, and while I try to be friendly to him, I guess the others don't really. They just put up with him, and so when he asked the boy of the duech family to play with him and got the answer no in reply, he positively threw a tantrum, and went into one of his sulking moods. His mum petted and comforted him as best she could, but he only got out of it when I got Samuel to shift over so he could squeeze in the same chair as him.

One meets VERY interesting people while travelling.

Dinner! We actually get to eat in the dining car! I decide to get roast steak, and nat, rice and beef! Samuel chose something else. The serving is small for the price, but I guess it's like that, whether train or plane.

Movie time again. I found this movie soooooo boring though. To begin with, the tv screen that was closest to me didn't work, so I missed the beginning of the show while a train attendant fixed it. And secondly, I didn't get the plot of the show. It's about some filming of a cop. Eddy Murphy acted as the cop in Showtime, but I didn't really like it. Boring.

I can't bear to spend the thought of enduring another night! ugh.... I finally doze off. One doesn't actually fall asleep on a train, one dozes off and on.

Tuesday 21st November 2006

Wake up and doze off

Wake up and doze off

Wake up and CAN'T doze off. Everyone is rushing for the washroom again, so I hurry, and am one of the LAST- I know, despite all my efforts!- to use it.

We finally arrive at our final destination, Adelaide, after a tiring 2 and a half days journey. Still, the train ride is not over. We still have one more going back... *groan*

Yes, this is exactly how our train looks like. Our carriage is the 2nd last. Very scenic and varied view, huh? :P

Saturday, 18 November 2006

I'm not ready to leave!

We're leaving tomorrow, and I'm not even ready to go. My luggage is half packed, and my carry bag is in the wash! ahhhh....

Wednesday, 15 November 2006

My folk art as promised

My folk art painting as promised in my last post:

I gave it away today to a grand aunty on my dad's side. We call her grand aunty, but she is really only my dad's age! Slightly younger even. It's one of those late marriage cases.

So, how do you like my art? It's not good, but it is a headway. We all aim for art perfection, but there really is no such thing. True art is your own feelings embodied into a substance, something visual or audio.

Tuesday, 14 November 2006

My happy snail!

I recently received a discarded wooden puzzle snail (that's a long story cut the shortest I can make it). Having some spare time after my exam, I decided to paint it... so there you have my happy snail, with a formal tie! (I wanted to do him navy and white, but decided that it won't go with his happy-go-lucky character, so compromised with a tie and collar.)

I used the most expensive paint in the house on this toy, simply because I had no other! :O The paint is actually for folk art- which I am doing halfway now- and I used about half a tube of brown paint on this little fella! Jo Sonja is such an expensive brand, but I didn't have acrylic, and watercolour would look terrible, so I sacrificed a bit of my unused brown paint on him. :) Someday soon I'll post a pic of my folk art- an old forgotten bit of territory I learnt of, some years back.

Monday, 13 November 2006

Going on holiday!


I'm going to see Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra and the desert in 6 days time! :D I am looking forward to it. Actually, I am enjoying myself a lot now. I think the best part of the holiday is the anticipation of the days before, not the actual event itself. Anticipation allows one to dream and well... anticipate! The real stuff doesn't- one is disillusioned all too often.

Anyway, I've only packed some stuff so far. I think packings fun too, because I like to dream- dream of what to wear and when to wear it, and maybe sometimes how to wear it! I'm quite a dreamer...

Well yes, that's pretty obvious isn't it! I keep getting off track. A good writer never does that! (well here I go again- talking about writing when my subject is my holiday!) Now. *clears throat, adjusts body posture and begins*

I shall be off to see Australia! (Well, at least some little bit of it.) And since it will be quite a long holiday- I think the longest I will have taken so far- I have decided to do some travel blogging for the benefit of my friends back where I live. One and a half months is a long time for them, they'll miss me (and my family) until their hearts ache, so having a little compassion for them... :D lol.

So here's the intro. Wait a bit for the umm... beginning?

I've turned advertiser

It seems like I've turned advertiser to my brother's art these days. But I can't help it- I think for an unpractised and untaught boy, he's got some real talent! I love this scene from the _____. You can guess again. :D

If my brother ever becomes famous, he shall owe much of it to me! He's too lazy and don't know how to try and publicise his drawings, so his "loving" sister gets the job. :P
Same note: please do not copy the drawing without permission.

Saturday, 11 November 2006

A genius in the making

Wow... The above picture is a drawing of my brother drawn several days ago. Isn't it good! I couldn't draw half as well. It is so 'like' too! Oh C'mon! I think it's good enough for you to guess who it is without me having to tell you! Can you guess?

I tried cropping the drawing using Picasa (it's a really cool picture program from Google) but for some reason I can't blog it! So I have to post the entire drawing. I only wanted to post (ooops must not let the cat out of the bag-I nearly did!) the lady's face.

I played around with the cropped drawing using photo impression, and it actually came out quite good! Again, I tried to post it, but I can't- don't know why.

Also, one last point before I take my leave. My brother requests that you do NOT (by any means, way or device) copy the picture without permission or he might sue you. (You are free to enjoy it here for free though!):P Thank you!

Thursday, 9 November 2006

Introducing the Elitemeadow Characters!

There are days where one is positively nostalgic, and today is one of them. In these sort of days, one dreams about bygone days (most people are worthless to do anything else on these days) and bygone events and objects. Today however, I dream about one aspect of my life that has 'carried' me through from birth until now.

These are my babies. Actually, I have been disillusioned quite some time ago of them being toys, but that is SUCH a horrible unfeeling term to use on one's life buddies...

I played with them on rainy days, pretending they each had some superpower, to overcome an obstacle. I once had a favourite bear called Rita (its was most probably a panda, since it had a black ring around the eye) which was so used that it had to undergo many operations to sew its torn leg up. I seriously don't know how it tore, but time and time over again, it did tear. Finally, mum and dad decided to throw it away...

These are my bed buddies since a long time ago until now. The oldest is probably 8 years old.

This is the oldest, Tiger:

She is a present from my dad. HE got it as a free gift from Esso, a petrol station in Singapore during one of their several promotions.

Then the next oldest 2 are probably Spotty and Miffy:

Spotty is actually my 2 brother's but he didn't take care of him, so out of pity, I adopted him as playmate for Miffy. Miffy came as a christmas present. She is so cute! (She's acutally from one of those promotions from a Kodak store)

Then, I got brown bear. He was saved from being discarded and unloved. He was my cousins' my they didn't want him, and I did, because of his unique stance, so I adopted him too. Jumbo (the little sized elephant mouse- I could never decide his breed) was also my 2 brother's. He actually sqeaks! (I couldn't decide whether he squeaked as an elephant because he was afraid of a mouse, or because he is a mouse) This is a picture of both Brown Bear and Jumbo. They 'guard' the rest of the family against intruders by standing guard outside the house (my bed).

Blue Bear... He is minusule! But so cute. I got him as a gift from my second cousins in Singapore. How nice. He is the perfect pocket sized bear to take along on any trip. Indeed, he is so small, that I am in constant fear of losing him! Miffy and him are on best terms. I wrote a story about his arrival, and it can be found here.

Greenfy is my 1st brother's. He got it around the same time I got Miffy. However, Greenfy was in danger of being ignored, so rather than hurting his poor feelings, I took him in. He has since then been able to play suitor to Miffy in my imaginations. :D I don't have a picture of him by himself, but he is in the collective picture right at the end of this post.

Then I have Harmony. He is a part of The Dog collection. He is a gift too, from some church friends. He helps to stand guard outside.

This is my 2nd newest addition. I decided to call him King because I had recently read the book "I am David", and really admired the courage and bravery of the sheepdog King. He is quite old, in fact he was my parents, but they decided they got too old for him, so I got him- and I'm glad! He looks like such a puppy, even though he is HUGE.

Then my newest (and my favourite) addition is Tennyson. I didn't get the priviledge of naming him. He got named already. He was my 16th Birthday present from 2 church friends, and I love him. He is so soft and cuddly (he is the softest toy I have ever owned!)I cry on him, smile on him, and lavish attention on him all the time, depending on the mood I'm in. :)Here he is:

That's all. :) Here's a picture with the lot of them grouped together. It was taken before Tennyson was added though, so he's not in there.

Wednesday, 8 November 2006

Meg Brooke of Sylvan Crescent

Now I know exactly how Meg Brooke felt after buying her shimmery violet silk material. I went and did the same thing! Well, except that it isn't silk, and it isn't shimmery, but I paid only about 5 cents less than she did! (ok- it IS made, so it's not a material, but so?)I'm telling this very badly. Lets start from the beginning.

Yesterday, I went to Garden City with my brother and some friends. (they'll know who I'm talking about when they read this!!) Feeling in a happy-go-lucky mood after my SAT test on Saturday, I decided to just treat myself, so I ordered a $7.20 Doner Kebab with garlic and chilli sauce on it. I actually never expected the chilli to be so hot, but it was ok until I got into the middle of my kebab. By that time, the chilli had been piling fire on my already alighted tongue, so I took a sip from my sprite... guess what- my mouth got about 7 times hotter than before! So I frantically took another sip, and another (bad decision, I know!) until I finally gave up because I was on the verge of 'crying'! With my mouth at 100 degree celsius, I really don't know how I made it through the rest of the kebab... (maybe because it was so nice, that it helped.) :P

Well after that, we decided to do some window shopping. (What else can a bunch of girls do at Garden City, hey?) By this time, my brother had decided he did NOT want to follow us, so he announced his intention of paying Games world a visit. (What's with boys and Gamesworld???!) So anyway, we went our separate ways. First main stop (you got to understand that to list ALL of our stops is virtually impossible, so I'm just going to the main stores)was at Equip (it's a girls' store, selling all the hairbands and jewelleries and stuff like that) and I saw this really gorgeous silver hairband with diamonds (ok, fake diamonds) on the top of it they had three different designs, but it so happened that the one I really liked was the most expensive! I would have bought it, except that I couldn't try it on. They tagged up the bottoms, so that nobody could wear it! That's quite silly- people won't buy stuff they can't try, especially something costing about $19.00!!! I decided to be 'thrifty'; you know, not waste God given resources and all, so I opted for another cool champagne coloured hairband, with less diamonds, but stylish and classy enough for me. I paid $9.95 for that!

I felt a little bit guilty already- I mean, who pays ten bucks for ONE hairband? (alright smarties, you guessed it: ME). Anyway, someone in our group wanted to visit accesorize, so we did. A small corner shop, but quite interesting. There, I saw this lovely- absolutely lovely (even nicer than my $10 hairband) velvety scarf. It's one of those royalty type kind of design you see in the movies: a thick stripe of deep purple alternated with a thick stripe of a lighter shade of purple, and a thinner stripe of gold!! It's seriously fit for a princess... I really wanted it, but it was $40 without discount! Fortunately, they were having a 70% discount on scarves that day, so it amounted to $10.70. Grrr... it's still expensive, and I couldn't think of anything to match it with, and before I could made up my mind, someone bought it!!! *growls*

Well, having saved my money only to spend more of it, I entered Portmans. (Do you realize that the items I wanted are getting progressively more expensive? That's what happens really, to girls who get cooped up at home for months to study one textbook, and one white rectangular screen all the time. It's the shopping urge getting the better of my senses.)I didn't enter there voluntarily. I was persuaded to go there. Hmmm... (minorish music starts here). Almost instantly, after entering the store, my eye fell on a light peach shell coloured top. One of those fashionable tops nowadays. (minorish music intensifies) No harm done, I decided to try it on, you know, just to see how it fit and etc... bad choice (minor music changes to diminished chords) well, I did, and guess what? It fit so nicely, and my brown pants which I chose to wear that day really highlighted the colour, and I looked great! (diminished music intensifying) I came out to let my friends inspect it, and they all proclaimed that it looked so nice on me, and then asked me if I would get it... (anguished music building up, higher and taller)A lump in my throat. Would I get it? Should I? It looked great on me, and it was 'fashionable'. But it was so expensive! If I bought it, it would probably be the most expensive outfit (let alone top) that I have EVER owned! A torrent of thoughts crowded my mind as I undressed. Should I? It's gorgeous! But what about the $49.95 label? What would mum say when I bring home such an expensive garment? *gulp*

I finally got into my dowdy looking shirt (compared to the other) and walked out. Just to buy time to still my thoughts and think 'clearly' I hung the shirt on a rack and did the ribbon behind, trying to think. Yes? No? Yes? No? I must say I really wanted the yes, but the no was quite adamant too...

Finally someone asked the fatal question, "Are you going to get it?" (anguished music blaring now) I shouldn't have looked at it. I shouldn't have taken a peek at it. At the second glance back, my resolve and 'principles' of spending turned into a pillar of salt, only to dissolve afterwards, making my already amaroidal regret even more ascetic. (anguished diminished chords screaming in warning)

Well, someone was expecting a reply, so after gulping down a few more lumps in my throat, I throatily replied, "uh...uh...y-y-yes." (the final chord, and the piano lid slams down to reinforce my reply and then deathly silence)

Reader, (how Bronte loves to use that word) I paid $49.95 for that garment, and it was a niggling pebble of guilt at the bck of my mind shopping at Kmart, enjoying my gelare cookie and cream icecream, and driving home. The pebble grew in size as we pulled up the driveway, and transmogrified into a boulder as I stepped into the door and mum asked what I had bought.

I needn't tell you how it went after that. Suffice to say that in trying to gain some consolation by 'peeking' at my lovely outfit again, the garment seemed less peachy shell coloured, more crinkly and sheerer than it did at the store. In vain I searched for the element that made me buy it... the magical quality. As any magical substance wafts away never to be found, so did the magical quality of my buy elude my search.

I don't think I shall ever forget that day. The day AND the shirt. Yes, I forgot to tell you too, that on the drive home, I realized that one of the diamonds in my $10 hairband had dropped out somewhere, I don't know where...

Thursday, 2 November 2006

Studying 24/7, well maybe 23/7 :D

My life these days revolve around a bright rectangular screen with a nice silver frame, containing figures and lettering...

My SAT: Reasoning Test 1 is coming up in 2 days time, and I'm so freaked out. My sleeping thoughts and waking thoughts are centred around the little desk with the white sheets, pencils, eraser and calculator on Saturday morning. It's scaring me. The prospect of the test does not frighten me. Rather, the thought that the day will decide the destination of the next few years scare me. What if I don't do well enough, or what if I let people down in their expectation of me? I hate to do that.

I find consolation in prayer. God is in control of my life, because I've released it to him. My life is no longer my own, but it is His, bought with the Blood of His Son Jesus Christ. He knows what is best for me, and I just have to accept that whatever happens, He is in control. Since He wants the best for my life, I can be assured that whatever happens (i.e. whatever score I get) will be the means of Him guiding my life. Maybe He doesn't want me studying the particular courses I selected, then He will alter or direct my answering to just the score I need to be able to get into the place where He wants me, and to not be able to get into the place where He doesn't wnat me in. It is a comforting thought, and I thought perhaps I'll share it with whomever cares to read it.

The exam period is coming up, and for most people, it is a time of busy study, preparation, and trial testing. But don't stress yourself too much. :) Just have faith, trust and believe that He wants the best for your life, and that He will carry you through if you ask Him to.

"Trust God as if only He can bring you through; work as if your studying is the only thing that can bring you through."