Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Merry Christmas

MERRY CHRISTMAS... a little late but late's better than never.

The days have flown by since my house was emptied of all living organisms except Mavis the plant and Sarah's plant in the kitchen and the plants in the living room... and me. First Sarah left, then Elena... we opened our presents before Sarah left - had a pancake breakfast. Did I mention that already? Yes? No? So the days have passed by quickly and I have been, as ever, busy; am in the process of:-

1) Knitting another scarf (for myself for a change),
2) Reading up for Moral Philosophy (The Philosophy of Religion, The Puzzle of Ethics, Ethics, Aristotle, Pooh and the Philosophers...). Among questions I have asked myself include did Rebecca's Looooeee's (loose.. hehehe p/s I don't don't how to spell her name) vulgar antics with the pig in some Five programme generate enough happiness to the greatest number? This is in keeping with Kant's viewpoint. Mills also says something about pigs...

Let it be known that I have been at Sean's for the past three days, faithfully studying :)

3) Finishing all the bananas in the house before they expire - have had almost 3 bananas a day for the past week.

I can't think of anything else now cos am in an Internet cafe, am hungry and want to go home to Giant Rump of Steak.

I can't wait for the term to start.

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

I nearly fell out of the bathtub

A whole week has passed since my last blog because I have been living in the real world a bit more :)

It has been a somewhat trying week, with God pitching His golden curveballs my way; very fast, very heavy and enough to make me feel slightly winded. However, I believe He has allowed me to go through certain things/ experiences/ issues to encourage, to guide, to rebuke, to nurture and ultimately, to make me more like Himself. The whole week is still a bit of a haze and I'm not going to go into details 'just because' (and because I don't think others need to know) but thank God as He works in your life every day through every situation through every person around you.

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Christmas cards

Am going to post my Christmas cards off today!!! Polar bears and seals in snow are the main themes going out, except for my brother who gets a dog cos it doubles as his birthday card as well. RML tonight and more good food (hopefully).

Homework

The day that's too far away, Saturday:
Met up with Carly, Lauren and Daniel. Went to Schmoward's in Mile End. Waited 10 minutes outside cos Schmo had gone shopping. Had sandwiches for lunch - I had chocolate spread and chicken slices in the same sandwich. Gourmet! Went to Canary wharf to watch Enduring Love. DON'T WATCH IT. I had to take a painkiller half way through. Really, really. Cleverly done, technically interesting but very disturbing. When the two guys kissed at the end, even when I covered my face with my moversized jumper, it was so loud, it reminded me of a plunger down the sink. That's the last time I trust Jonathan Ross. Carly and Daniel went home at this point. The rest of us, including Iain, went back to Scmo's. He prepared Lancashire hot pot. We watched Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon whilst waiting. We needed something to calm our frazzled nerves after watching Enduring Love. Enduring indeed. Mick came round and his dog Jade, too. About five times he visited us that day (and night). And we had the most delightful chat about dogs and dog species and how loyal dogs are and more doggy chat. I'll remember to bring a treat for Jade the next time I go round. by the way, Schmoward's Lancashire hot pot is amazing although i wouldn't put the kidneys in personally.

The day before yesterday, Sunday:
Sunday school early in the morning. Charlie nearly tore my 12 foot long scarf in two cos I used it to entice him to his seat; a bit like enticing a kitten with a piece of wool. Saw Holty's parents again. Told his mum about the pancake shop in Holborn - have been telling quite a few people about it. His dad commented that he (himself, not Holty) looked like a badger cos of his hair. Funny. Back to church in the evening.

Yesterday, Monday, 6th December 2004:
Woke up at 9am. Ate breakfast and started my essay - problem question on overreaching, joint tenancies and tenancies in common and trusts of land - at 10am. Entertained Sean and Joe briefly while they waited for their very nice lunch (which I didn't partake of) to heat in the microwave. Returned to my essay and FINISHED it at 2pm; 1,860 words! Very satisfied. Handed it in. off to Covent Garden to 'celebrate' my finished essay. Bought a Wild Cats calender. I think I have about 3 of them now. Round to Tara's an hour and a half early to wait for the rest of my small group. They arrived an hour and a half later. Starving, we went to Nandos in Camberwell. Found out theat we had chosen a night that they had chosen to shut early; they were going to have THEIR Christmas party. Forget the customers, we want to have fun. So we were chucked out unto the streets clutching to our bags of take-away Nandos. With no where else to go, we decided to go back to Sarah's (and moi) place. I finished the chips at the bus stop and my spicy rice before we boarded the bus. Did I mention that I was hungry? Filled myself up with chicken on the bus and was full before we got to Oval. Oh, I also did laundry in the afternoon, which I remembered to get from the washing line at about 10pm. before going to bed, I stuck up my new found pictures on the little space I have left on my wall.

Today, the day before tomorrow:
Had cous cous and left over Nandos for breakfast. Washed up - I hope to maintain a good habit of washing up immediately after I munch. was going to meet Sonia at 2pm but was rearranged later for 2.30pm at Waterloo. My memory is slightly hazy as to what I did between breakfast and seeing Sonia... Oh wait, I read my Bible and wrote out more of the Psalms and showered and had a ginger nut biscuit for lunch. Had a good chat with Sonia about the Bible and commitment and trusting God and God's sovereignty, among other things. Will be going to International cafe for what I hope will be healthy food. after that CU; Paul Mayo is 'preaching' tonight. Quality street.

Friday, December 03, 2004

Benson!!

It's Benson's birthday today and he's 21 years old in doggy years. I bought him turkey giblets and Ernie let me make a right fuss over my doggy-woggy love. I always happen to wear black whenever I see Benson and he's white and stinkeee and gets his fur all over me... :) He's sooo cute and 'meaty' and chunky so loads to hug and gaga over! So I bought a lint remover at Tesco. it even has little cat and dog silhouettes around the sides. Now, Benson can 'hup' all over my winter coat and it wouldn't matter one bit. I'm also going to see Max after term ends cos I've got a Christmas present for him. Another stinky pooch :p

Worked hard yesterday so treated myself to Beauty and the Beast. It just keeps getting better.

The end of the year is almost over and the McCheyne plan is almost done. To those of you looking forward to completing the course with me, it has been a journey worth taking.

Nothing much left to say. Just wanted you all to know that Benson is well :) hehehehehe.

Sweaty gym men and others

I am glad that I do not work in a gym. My brief stint - rushing through the gym 4 times with large bags of trash - was more than enough. It's not just the sweaty men who never seem to get clean even after they shower (or do they?). Watching them work out from the corner of my eye, I nearly buckled, not necessarily caused by the lack of oxygen but more the inward laughter that traveled from my failed-to-be-hidden grin to my leg muscles, which could already hardly keep up. Shorts which were too short, shirts which were too thin and unventilated and crusty looking socks can certainly damp down one's appetite.

The Gingster (sandwich) man asked me for my phone number and I nearly gave it to him when he promised me a sandwich of my choice. Reminiscence of the Bible story where Esau sold his birthright to Jacob for red stew. A Turkish man (he said he was from Turkey) randomly invited me to have coffee with him while I was waiting for Daryl last Sunday and I very nearly panicked and was watching the stairway for Daryl who could chase away this unwanted guest with just one look. Unfortunately, he wasn't anywhere to be seen so I turned back to the Turkish man, put on my very best wide-eyed 'I don't know anything' look and insisted with the stubbornness of a begrudging mule, that I wanted to stay put and read my 'What is an oyster card?' leaflet. He eventually left and I breathed a sigh of relief. I had been prepared to scream the place down if he had tried to weasel me out of the station. After my encounter, I positioned myself right in the way of a CCTV camera.

I have been downloading cases the whole day and after dinner tonight, I shall start on my reading for tomorrow's property seminar. I shall see Schmoward on Saturday with Carly.

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

I wish I may, I wish I might...

I find it strange (or maybe just logical) that lately the only freetime I have to blog is when I am ill :( It is true that I have taken more painkillers this academic year than in my last 2 years in London put together. Oh well, it gives me more time to blog and think I guess :)

I had the mother of all headaches last night. Had a restless night's sleep, barely managing to doze off at 6am even though I went to bed at 12. It wasn't just the headache's fault though. Imagination overload, I also felt like hurling everytime I remembered Tom telling me that Jamie saw his digested turkey from RML 5 times. About 15 times throughout the night I agonised whether or not to make a dash to the loo but because I like to keep sensitive issues like chucking it up private, I decided against it, in case Elena or Sarah heard me and woke up or needed a late night trip to the bowl and saw/ heard me. Aaaah, the joy of knowing that what could have come up is now digested and is part of my system. So, headache, nausea... what else?Ah, my whole body was wracking with muscle cramps and joint aches as well. It was a joke back home that I had the ailments of a typical grandmother. My mum used to come into my room and massage my legs until I could sleep again when I was younger and then I had to do it myself. The smell of vapour rub and other traditional menthol or eucalyptus oils would be the first smell that hit anyone walking through my room. Once, an aunt said that the noly other room that smelt like my room was my late grandad's room cos he liked to walk around smelling oils, hence my similarity to old people :) Nowadays I just curl into a ball and try to fall asleep.

I also get strange dreams when I fall ill. There was one time in Aussie when I was desperately ill (but no one knew cos I'm stubborn and keep these things to myself until years later) and I kept on dreaming that the Tranformer baddies were chasing me and I broke out in cold sweat, which I blamed on the hot weather. It wasn't that bad last night. I dreamt that Tom was telling me about Jamie puking and of my neighbour Mark and his son, Mark II, which reminded me that I need to pray for them more often. I also dreamt of this guy called Lahmi who was really mean to me at a party and all my friends had warned me that he was mean. Lahmi? Where did I come up with a name like that? Apparently, he's Goliath's brother.

Yesterday I led my last one-to-one with Sophie de Witt. 1 Peter. She played the part of a new Christian to perfection and there were several times I cracked up just because she was asking questions to which she blatantly knew the answer. She's gonna give me a study Bible tomorrow at RML before she leaves.

I have written out my Christmas cards already and will post them in about a week's time as some of them have to go quite far. I have yet to complete my homework, Fi, I'm still waiting for my laptop with the in-design programme on it (yes? no? yes? no?) and my head needs decluttering. See some of you soon, see some of you sooner and if I won't see some of you soon, I hope we'll see each other in Heaven.

Saturday, November 27, 2004

The aftermath

I woke up with a very bad headache but tried to convince myself it was all worthwhile. Plates lined the skyline of the kitchen... exaggeration doh. sarh and I cleaned the kitchen bit by bit, plates, cutlery, smoothie maker, pots and pans, cups, living room, rearranging the rooms to the way it used to be. I still have a very bad headache but I tell myself it was all worthwhile :)

The house is not fully clean but there's always tomorrow, essay to write, two boys to tutor, friends to meet up with.

Quite comic but at the same time a relief, knowing that I am physically able to take on Thanksgiving, although it can always be better. Bring on Christmas and it has started to rain.

Friday, November 26, 2004

Thankful because...

Thanksgiving day. Yesterday. The progression of the day is still going through my head.

8am, wake up call.
9am, cleaning takes off - slowly - clearing clutter, cleaning the last 2 weeks worth of dishes....
12:30 noonish, house sat for Tom while knitting and dancing randomly to the radio (oh, the wonderful options I have when the boys are not in).
3pm, rushed back to my place. Tom was an hour behind schedule. My life hung in the balance. People were due at the house at 6pm for dinner at 7pm, I still had the house to clean, whole meal to cook and make myself look decent.
3:30, turkey went slam bang into the oven, stuffed with mushrooms, onions and a heap of herbs stirred into butter.
4pm, three large pots of water were boiling ready for the potatoes, sweet potatoes and yams that were only halfway cut.
4:30pm, most things are on the boil and I start making stuffing balls.
5pm, a record 10 minute shower.
5:30pm, three lots of potatoes are in the boys' oven, turkey is browning, I have finished making the balls to be dumped into the oven at some point in time, get the beans ready, hoover the floors, pretty flowers from Sainsbury's go up unto the mantlepiece, Elena has left to catch the train...
6pm, Helen arrives and helps me peel carrots :) and I realise that I have overcooked the sweet potatoes so tip them out of the roasting tin and begin mashing them instead.
6:30pm, most people are there chatting, drinking, chairs and plates start coming round from the boys' place. we rearrange the living room to accomodate 16 people. The kitchen table is brought through and joined with the dining table AND coffee table (7 people had to sit on the floor by the coffee table but I think some of the pilgrims way back in history did that anyway so all was good).
7pm, we waited for the last few people, I started making the gravy and checked on the four apple pies in the fridge (I thought I could save one for myself today, I was wrong. 16 people can polish off quite a lot). Bread rolls and butter, carrots, beans, potatoes, sweet potatoes, yams, gravy and stuffing balls line the table. Not forgetting the cranberry sauce.
7:20, everyone is seated, Tom says grace, Jamie carves the turkey. 3 hours of systematic panic and phew! Thanksgiving indeed.
12 midnight, everyone went home after dinner, apple pie with whipped cream, rounds of Joe's Bailey's smoothies (oooooh), Krista's hot chocolate, tea and Robin Hood; Prince of Thieves (thank you Big Dave!!).
I fall into bed.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Speeeling 2

I spelt 'previous' wrongly in my latest blog before this one...

I promised Sean that I would go in for my 9am lecture today and I did. Woke up at 8am in a hurry because I thought I wouldn't make it in time but since a promise is a promise, I decided that whether I made a late appearance or not, I would still go. In fact, it turned out that I was not as late as I thought I was because my alarm clocks are set at 10 minutes and 15 minutes respectively, faster than normal so there was even enough time for me to grab last night's dinner as breakfast. Will be meeting up with a few people today and this week in general, to catch up, not to mention Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow night. I invited 2 random American guys, whom I was serving at the Student Union, as well. I might have to borrow the guys' table from 3 doors away, if I can fit it through the front door. So later today I'll be cleaning house and tweaking things into place not to mention purchasing a turkey, necessary veggies, tuburs, pumpkin, cranberry jelly etc before going to St Hs for RML. I think I will wear my 12 foot long scarf tonight for fun.

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Are you pondering what I'm pondering?

It has been a very long time since I have last updated you all and quite a bit has happened. My chat with Daryl is still lingering in my mind and more often than not, I awake, wondering how I can pursue purity and holiness for another day. Don't get me wrong, they are not airy-fairy days of butterfly wings and prancing among wild flowers. Rather, I am being confronted with what it really is to struggle to maintain, as DOGW puts it, the posture of godliness. Even then, I am sure that the bigger struggles I will have to face up to one day have yet to be smelt, let alone seen. Anyhoo, there is a strange sense of relief as I resolve to take a step into another chapter in my life. Although the previous academic year was very, very fun, I would have to say that it was tougher in some ways compared to my orevious 19 years of 'experience' - hahahahaha. Spiritual issues I had to battle with; my own rebellion still wanting and still willing me to 'take control' and perhaps, a new perspective on life, has all been a lot to take on. I'm not wallowing in poor-me pity, nor am I proclaiming my victories in overcoming my troubles(because I haven't, and will never truly overcome in this life). It is a fact that every Christian, from whichever nationality, race or background will in their lifetime face the same petty things that everyone else does. The only difference is that our hope is rooted in and displays Christ. In the book of Peter, the Bible says that we should be encouraged that our Christian brothers and sisters are going through the same struggles as we are. Personal/ emotional/ psychological issues; there is no need for me to go into the heartache and helplessness they can cause. But I am glad that, in Christ, I have 'emerged' from last year's tunnel so that as I enter or have entered into this year's channel, I have the assurance that even through the toughest moments this year will bring, I can be confident that as long as my hope and faith are secure in Christ, I have hope for a future with Him no matter what.

No matter what. Pretty brazen words. But not of my understanding or from my own strength, but through Him who died for me, through Him who has redeemed me even as I stand condemned by my words and actions and thoughts.

Heavy words to ponder, heavy thoughts to weigh... maybe that's why it takes so long to process.

Saturday, November 20, 2004

Speeeling

I spelt frustrated wrongly in the previous blog. Will blog when I have more than 10 minutes to myself.

P/s: Shortest blog in my history... I think.

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Hmmm?

I lost my earring back piece 2 nights ago and was involved in a long and fruitless hunt for it. Although I failed to recover my lost property and was frsutrated, as I sat on my bed wondering where on earth it had flown to, I found myself thinking that I had discovered other things more precious in eternity; my letter to Ben that I wrote 2 weeks ago, which was under a pile of something (I sent him 2 letters yesterday), email addresses on scraps of paper that I had forgotten to put into my account, catalogues that sparked new ideas not just for Christmas but for life in general and flyers inviting friends to Christmas Carols and other evangelistic events.

Daryl came round yester evening and we had a good long chat, reminding ourselves of what it meant to be loved by God despite shortcomings. It is good to be reminded of the important points, the central focus, the big idea. Such a simple act of love that we often take it for granted or try turn it into some complex theory (to make it more acceptable... after all, it can't be THAT easy, surely) and as a result grace and mercy are disregarded because the sinner becomes the focal point instead of God. So profound that we will never comprehend it in this life.

4pm and I need to go to Tesco for baby lotion among other things. I bought myself a book on horses in Marks and Sparks last Monday; Spirit of the Horse. RML tonight and before that I need to get more Bible reading in and draw up invites to Thanksgiving dinner and Friday Cafe.

Monday, November 15, 2004

Oh Christmas tree...

Elena and I put the Christmas tree up today, decked with home-made decorations made out of shiny paper stuck onto tea coasters, polystyrene bla bla bla for snow and painted, fused lightbulbs for baubles, not to mention gold ribbons, grapes King Midas would be proud of and a snowman. I taught Sunday School today :) and bought 3 more books of Phil. Elena got me the biggest jar of Marmite she could find and that, ladies and genteel men, coupled with a biscuit or two, shall be my breakfast until the Marmite runs out. I have an essay to write for tomorrow; Immanuel Kant and his Categorical Imperative theory has to be completed before 12 noon tomorrow.

I have to start disciplining myself in my lifestyle and need to stop excavating holes I can't dig myself out off. One wonders why I have seemingly so much time to spare. It's because I have to wait while God calls in His team of expert engineers to fashion an elevator. But in the long run, it's God who's waiting for me to finish what He has destined me for and be perfected through Christ to be transformed into his likeness. I can see an aeroplane bleeping away in the sky. I can't wait to touch down on good, ol, Malaysian soil again. Am looking forward to the end of the year. It signifies several things; my course is halfway over, I would have (hopefully) completed the McCheyne Bible-reading plan, Christmas with the Grinch is on the cards and the start of a new year. It is so refreshing that as Christians, we don't have to wait for a new year to begin anew, to start afresh, to start from scratch, for a change of heart. The Spirit is constantly changing and moulding us as we process change and change in the process. All we have to do is be submissive and surrender. The easiest thing to do with the most reward and yet so often we fight for our rights when in actual fact, we have none. I for one, am excited about what God might do through me in the future or right now or what He has already done because it's all about His glory and character; His goodness and mercy and patience and forgiveness, His full attention on the mundane in our lives, His delight in our joy that comes from Him. Truly, life is all about God and to realise that, though in the little that we may in this lifetime, is to burst forth in jubilation and song.

Emotions are very, very fickle and very shaky ground to base any convictions on. So let our convictions base themselves in solid truth that our emotions, fragile as they are, will glow with the peace that comes from God, be it on the mountain top or in the valley of the shadow of death.

Monday, November 08, 2004

Question time

Someone asked me to blog on the following questions:

1. What is the seemingly most attractive thing about Jesus to Malaysians? What distinguishes Christ the most?
Grace is the one thing that is offered by God in Christianity and no other religion. What is attractive about Christianity? It depends on the person really. One of the reasons could actually be peer pressure (talk about positive peer pressure). Because we come from a 'kiasu' (scared of losing face or being left behind in the stakes) society, among teenagers, when non-Christians see their friends in church lifting hands and praising God unashamed, it breeds interest, especially if the individuals are popular at school and etc. So, anything from the curiosity of grace to the neo-charismatic service. However, there is an understood slight danger where many 'Christians' put their faith in how they are feeling or how they can please their Christian boyfriend/ girlfriend (by 'becoming' a Christian) rather than being grounded in truth.

2. What is witnessing like in the Malaysian church? How free are you to evangelize? Do you use tracts? Do you use any programs like FAITH, Romans Road, 4 Spiritual Laws?
Among students, witnessing is usually at school or when we are out with our friends. People observe their Christian friends' behaviour to back up this 'faith' they keep jabbering about. Christian 'concerts' and conferences are also a great way to reach out. However, we have to remember that the follow up is also important if not more important to ensure that they are sure about the message and are not just on some concert high.
Malaysian churches use programmes like the Alpha course or other programmes run by organisations such as the Scipture Union. We are free to evangelise and is usually done over dinner/ lunch/ buffet... :)

3. What would be distinctive about an Malaysian service, compared to Western services?
It depends on which church you attend. There are charismatic churches in the West as they are conservative (although very few) churches in Malaysia. Most churches (in Malaysia) are charismatic or neo-charismatic and there is a full session of 'praise and worship' for about 45 minutes followed by notices etc and a 45 minute sermon. The church I go to in London is of the sit-stand-sit variety - great for exercise.

4. Can Jesus be portrayed as the elders' elder, the authority to which all authorities must conform?
He can and he should be. He is the cornerstone, remember?

5. Does the Malaysian church offer food pantries, orphanages, visitation to nursing homes and prisons? Any of this, or is it restricted?
Most organisations welcome food, clothing and generally help, from anyone and the government encourages this regardless of religion.

6. How does the government view home church meetings? passing out Christian literature?
2 of the 14 states in Malaysia are ruled by the Syariah law and so passing out literature there might not be allowed - I'm not sure. However, they are still allowed to go to church. I doubt there are such limitations on other churches though.

7. Do Asian churches have love feasts, church potluck dinners, fellowship around food, and how is this viewed. I understand that in Jesus' culture, food sharing was almost as intimate as sex!
I doubt food sharing is considered intimate although we all enjoy a good 10 course round dinner from time to time. We have feasts at church on a regular basis where we all bring a dish (or more) and share it. This is usually followed by a talk or is held in conjunction of an event like Christmas. Eating is not just a necessity among Malaysians, it's a social event.

8. Is there a Malaysian version of the cross, a special ornamentation, like Greek, Russian, etc. versions?
No.

9. Is the cross a prominent symbol?
Most churches if not all, would have a cross on the wall in front of the building and inside, so yeah, I would say it's prominent. Is it prominent in general? Most people who either wear it as an ornamental piece or out of belief know what it stands for so again, yeah.

10. How do you reach your Mohammedan neighbors with the gospel (I call Islam "Mohammedan" because they follow that guy's teachings, like we are called "Christians" because we follow Christ's teachings).
With love and sensitivity.

Jesus and horses

Very few things/ people stand between me and my two loves although maybe I should fit my brother just before horses(?). I find everyday a struggle to consciously ensure that I'm not leaving my friends out of my daily walk with Christ. We were made for fellowship with Christ and one another is a phrase, of which I find the latter extremely hard to follow on my own accord. A distorted Eden if you would like. There's me, and God and all the animals and nature and creation. But standing next to me is another person (representing fellowship with other Christians in this context) with whom I am supposed to share my life with. I am learning to be more and more Christ-like everyday from the least likely of sources, which both humble and renew me and yet there is still a stubborn and selfish streak that will not let go of my world. Fear of being exposed? Fear of being vulnerable? Fear of realising I cannot make it on my own? I quoted it before and I quote it again, "Perfect love drives out all fear." I wonder if that is why I only feel like myself when I'm alone, sharing my thoughts and insignificant questions with God.

I have a doctrine of notice versus doctrine of overreaching essay to write for Property tomorrow. With Tim Hughes in the background and chinese sweet and sour (I cooked for Daryl and JP too - one of them picked away at the cabbage whilst the other flatly refused to eat the mushrooms) in my stomach, I will endeavour to finish this essay before Sarah comes home tonight and reclaims possession of her computer.

Sunday school today and two peeps in my group had birthdays and Oliver's mum made a ooooh-yummy chocolate ship complete with yellow and green sails and chocolate fingers all around. Ooooh yum. Yet another thing five-year olds and I have in common. For about 3 years running, I had the same cake ordered for my birthday; a horse and a rabbit iced unto a vanilla chocolate sponge cake about a foot by a foot and a half. And if you think that's nutty, my mum ordered me a giant snoopy chocolate cake for my SECOND birthday - it was bigger than I was - and though I may not have been that big, it was sufficiently sized to be defined as giant. Sunday school is a blessing in disguise. I went in to serve and what I have received in return in a thousandfold; a further investment in eternity. For the past 6 weeks, our memory verse has been "The LORD is faithful to all His promises" Psalm 145:13 and next week, I will actually be teaching! Yay! I think it's the Esau and Jacob story. Red, hairy guy versus smooth-skinned lad. Hunter versus shepherd. Impulse versus Deception. But that's not how I'm gonna introduce the story :)

As I shared with my tutee on Saturday, the importance of discipline, whichever field of work he might want to go into in the future, I felt God addressing me even as the words fell from my lips and the more He spoke to me, the more discipline made sense. A disciplined Christian. Discipline in thought and word and deed. Consistent. Reliable. Strong in Christ. When we look round and judge the lifestyle and bits and bobs of others' lives as we do, bear in mind, the 'weakest' person, the least likely candidate for speaking out for Christ in the face of adversity, the person most likely to crumble and fall, that person probably has convictions and faith that will blow most of us away. It is when we are weak that we are strong, it is when we are frail that we are strengthened, it is when we are torn that we are united, it is when we are dead to ourselves that we live.

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Cookie monster - that's me

Roast chicken and bacon sandwich from Ginsters, a large packet of chilli crackers and a king sized Cadbury dairy milk bar was, is and is going to be, my lunch; my only break working from 9 to 5 today. Supersize everything! For dinner tonight, I have been invited to Limehouse to partake in a feast of belly pork or as the Chinese call it, pui bak, directly translated as fat meat (*sigh* perhaps I should just nibble on carrots for the rest of the week). It's only convenient to revolve my timetable and social responsibilities over a dish of good food. I made giant pancakes for Elena and myself last night (consumed with butter and pure maple syrup from Canada) as we tried to convince ourselves that studying was going to happen any day now.

I have 3 essays to hand in on Monday and I am hoping that I shall complete one a day from tomorrow onwards.

I met this guy (his name's Alex) yesterday who I started chatting to (as opposed to chatting up) just because I though he had such nice hair. Not frizzy but not exactly curly... more ringlet-like. I think I am slowly driving Elena mad with my references to Mr Knightly (Emma). I have to get back to work in 10 minutes time and my mouth is filled with chocolate - it's as if a chocolate bomb exploded in my mouth. Maybe I should wash it down with coke - more good/bad food.

Ahhh.. nothing left to say. Food on the brain.

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Father Ted

Elena and I had the rare opportunity to watch Father Ted on TV last night at about 11pm. Elena's mum is getting her the whole series of Father Ted so we can watch it everyday, anyday (yay), not that we will watch it everyday. Last night's episod was the one with the milk float and some dodgy milkman in it. Father Dougal is so sweet... awhh.

Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday... 5 days have passed and should I tell all? On Friday, I contracted migraine and so couldn't go in for a seminar or work. I did however, start knitting Fay's Christmas scarf. When Friday night came around though, I remembered I was invited to dinner and so began the process of getting ready. My eyes were dreary from squinting because of my sore head so I dressed them up to look like panda bear eyes. We went to Royal China in Canary Wharf and waited an hour before we were served; typical of a Chinese restaurant especially when tables are not reserved. Royal China, oooooh yum. We had peanuts and pickles, duck pancakes, yam basket (more like yum basket... hehehe), some wine chicken thing, green vegetables, tofu, prawns... mmmm, it was all very good. Feeling very full afterwards, we walked to Limehouse for dessert - chocolate coated doughnuts ("Mmm... donuts" - Homer Simpson), ice cream cake and fruit. All very yummy.

Saturday; had a tutorial at 11.30 til 1.30, followed by a trip to Lewisham and back at 5.30, quite exhausted. I did a quick check of my wrapping paper and I need a good 2 more rolls. I might do some shopping next week as this week is reading week and I have (I think) 3 essays to catch up on. So, I arrived home thinking i was going to have a laid back and quiet night in with Simon Cowell (the X-Factor) when I suddenly remembered (again) that Carly had invited me round to hers for dinner and to meet up with Katy's brother. So, I tried to get through changing as fast as I could and hopped a bus and went to Carly's. It was good to be there, despite me nearly falling alseep on several occasions. I just wanted to snuggle down into the warm and comfy spare bed but I couldn't, so instead I sprawled myself unto a bean bag and tried to pretend I was a large sheepdog without a care in the world. I met Dan, who has, in my opinion, on of the nicest heads of hair I have ever seen. The other belongs to Matt Williams. After dinner and chat, we trooped to St Paul's - a good 30 minute walk at least - to show it off to Katy's brother, Pete. For me, it was a chance to breathe in some 'fresh' air. The clocks changed as well!

Sunday. Had a nice, long lie-in. Lie in? Lay in? Sleep in? Hmph. My head was going through an on-off relationship with pulsating capilaries in my brain and I felt awful. No, be positive. I felt lightheaded. There, that sounds much better. Did my share of house cleaning and washed the laundry, which took a long, long time as a substantial amount of clothes I have are supposed to be hand-washed. I nearly didn't want to go in for Sunday service that evening because my head was still throbbing but Sarah persuaded me and off I went. Arrived St Helens 'late' and got to sit in the gallery :) John Chapman was giving the sermon and for some reason I though he would be a middle aged, lots of brown hair and maybe a tache to go. It turns out, he's 75, white haired and no tache. He's cool though - he was wearing an elephant-print tie on Monday.

Monday. Had one-to-one and a prawn pasta thing in Bow at 12. We learned about submission to authority yesterday. Next week, we will be looking at the whole husbands and wives ding-a-ling. I arrived home about 4 and had to preen myself to go out again to help in St Helen's 'Investing for Life.' I had to don white and black attire as I was scheduled to help serve canapes to guests - fun. There were several of us there in penguin coloured suits; Sim, Chris, Martin, Big Dave... I also met some new people whom I will look out for in the future. The spread was as usual delightful courtesy of a one Mike Thorpe. Samosas, bhajis, little salmon things on crackers, cheese balls, bacon rolls, pork pies, mini scotch eggs, pies, quiche, pastry thingies, cocktail sausages, sausage rolls - all very yummy food. After helping clean up, Big Dave and I went home with 2 bottles of wine each.

The above, ladies and gentlemen, is my submission to a very busy past few days. Today, I hope to get all the necessary notes off the Intranet, pay the gas bill, do some reading, phone the landlord, check the laundry, wine and dine at Wagamama's, followed by Accoustic night at the Great Hall. Tomorrow, I shall be working the whole day as I will also do the following day.

Before I go, John Chapman listed 5 things on Sunday, which I think is a good pivotal point for us to share Christianity with our friends.

1) Christ's unique birth - the virgin birth
2) Christ's unique life - he came to die
3) Christ's unique death - what his death accomplished
4) Christ's unique resurrection - doh (maybe 'doh' is not a great explanation...)
5) Christ's unique characteristics

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Evolution

At this point in time, I have just finished a king-sized Snickers bar and a king-sized Twix for lunch so forgive me if my arguments just bounce off walls and my manner appears, ever so slightly (actually very much) ungraceful.

Mankind can come up with the most patronizing and incredulous excuses for believing in everything and anything except acknowledging the existence of Almighty God (here, I don't consider the whole I-feel-there-is-some-power-out-there as 'acknowledgement' of the Trinity) therefore, God's Truth that he will one day judge the world. Based on what Christians believe about evolution (and I will expound/ expand/ talk more about this further down), I quote someone I talked to today,
"I think that God is so powerful that He could make it all work out in the right way." What she meant to say (surely) was,
"I believe we evolved from primates and possibly am related in some bizzare way to the piece of fish that finds its way as the other half of fish and chips on my platter." How did we come to the topic of evolution?

It's splashed over the news today. A 3 foot tall homo something from Indonesia is the new missing link! Yeah, sure. I'm not that far off 3 foot and I wouldn't consider myself a missing link to humanity. The artist's impression of the said 'link' drew it carrying some dead animal over its shoulders, which had nearly as much hair on its body the human carrying it. Stark naked as usual and looking rather forlorn and primitive. So everyone gathers round this picture and ooohs and aaahs over it. Oh, so THAT's what our ancestors looked like. I'm not saying that the discovery in Indonesia aint human. I mean, in Africa, there's the Baca (I think - I read this ages ago in Readers' Digest) tribe where the tallest male to date is no more than 5 feet tall because they don't go through the 'normal' growth spurt of other teenagers. I went through some sort of growth spurt so I'll just leave you to imagine how short I was before that :) They live in the jungle, have no access to the NHS, don't have the advantage of having supermarkets displaying shelves and shelves of vitamins or protein shakes and oh, get this, there's no Macdonalds to maximise their fat cells. So naturally, given their biological history and surroundings, they are short. If scientists work up such a hoo-ha over size, who's to say that THEY aren't the missing link? Remember the Piltdown man scandal? They found a skull of a human with the jaw of an ape and all the science world went ape over the matter. Finally, the mystery of evolution was in their grasp! But no, it was a scam and a sham, a hoax, some call it. I think it was a result of a scientist desperately wanting to go down in the annals of history combined with (perhaps) a sudden panic attack; it struck him that macro-evolution did not exist! So he placed a chimpanzees jaw with a human skull to try cover his pathetic attempts of inventing a sequence of events in history that never happened. He did go down in the history books alright.

I'm no totally against evolution as a whole. Micro-evolution is plausible; Adam and Eve may not necessarily look like the 'modern' man. For all we know, they could be short, dark and very hairy. God never said he created a tall, wavy-haired, aquiline-nosed, waxed, Greek statue. In fact the 'hairy' gene is more dominant than the 'hairless' gene so if God wanted to populate the earth as we know it today, He would have needed some pretty dominant genes to pass through the human race. So in that sense, we as humans did 'evolve' and change to the many races we are today. However, we descended and developed from human genes and did not, as the other theory (macro-evolution) puts it, go through every creature in history (I'm exaggerating) before reaching human 'status.' Fish did not change into frogs. Frogs did not change into queer hairy amphibians, which then developed into little mammals and giant animals to follow. It sounds more like vegetation colonising the earth rather than the amazing revelation of just being human; hydras, reeds, mangroove swamp, etc. Was Darwin vegetarian?

For arguments sake, imagine that in the far, far future we will morph into crinkly, green creatures with big, pupilless, black eyes and holes for ears (taking an X-Files example, although we can see the same effects in someone on a ship, sea-sick, dehydrated and blacked out due to a pub brawl, which proves that what humans deem aliens is only a representation of the worse they see in themselves). If I ask,
"Why aren't we showing sypmtoms of turning into this alien race?" they will answer,
"Because only one species can survive at a time." If so, how then will we ever make that transition into a more dominant species? We either realise we are changing and ultimately change or we just change overnight. You can't proceed on without having something to start off with. Following macro-evolution's theory, you can't have a frog if the fish didn't slowly change into it. If we all did chnage overnight, I doubt many scientists would back it up as evolution.
"Woo hoo! We are the next species!"

It is easier to sink into depravity than to strive for holiness.

It is easier for people to believe that they came from animals so as to justify their immorality as 'natural instinct.' For example, to explain away a man's infidelity, silly people with doctorates that mean nothing might say that it is innate for a man to want to plant his seed. Which animal they refer to when they mention that theory, is something I would really like to know. Lions, elephants, frogs... fine, that's what they do. But then, they are eliminating the possibility (although we clearly know there isn't any) that we might have descended from wolves or geese, both which do the whole 'til death do we part' thing. Then they will say,
"Oh no, that's not what we meant. We all evolve from different cells to from different creatures so we have nothing to do with lions or wolves." If so, than how can you refer to an animal, point and say,
"It is innate for man..."

Seriously, creation is so much easier to believe.

I have half an hour to get to Tax tutorial so I will continue this conversation when I'm less hyped-up and can think more clearly and am not enraged by pathetic claims that try hide the fact we are all fallen human beings who need to be rescued with silly fish theories.

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Plans for Thanksgiving Day

So, I have emptied my hotmail box of junk and excess mail, finished my shift for the day, had a chicken and sweetcorn sandwich for lunch and am going home to prepare a musaka baked in a pumpkin shell. What next?

I have decided that all my efforts of roasting turkey and baking pumpkin pies should be put to good use and enjoyed on the day that turkey and pumpkin were made to be eaten together - Thanksgiving Day. I have vaguely calculated my American and honarary American guests and I think a 4kg turkey should be sufficient. Do remember that although the turkey is the main course, it shall be served with potatoes, trimmings, gravy, hopefully cranberry sauce, baked yams and of course, pumpkin pie. Yum. It shall be a feast to remember and a feast to cook. I wonder if guests will be willing to participate in a dress up; gothic fat turkeys a la The Adam's Family...

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Too eager

I rose at... 6.35AM!!!! YES (it can be done)!!!!!! Had chicken curry out of a tin (yup, curry for breakfast), a flapjack (there's always room for dessert) and a cup of tea and sat down to study Trusts. Several pages of Hayton, Penner and taking notes later, the usual morning routine of shower, change and run commenced. I arrived 5E for Tax beaming, until I realised there wasn't a soul in the room. Uh-oh. Did I get the wrong room? Quick, check the timetable... no, right room. However, after more careful observation of my timetable, I realised that I had arrived too early. An hour early - that's what. Ahh, there is such a thing as being too eager. I shall be working later in Waterloo - I think I need to put more hours into it so as to boost up my funding. Might try pencil my name in for a few more hours next week as it is reading week. Reading week! It seemed like yesterday when reading week was aeons away. Oh well, I have homework due in so it's not going to be a do-nothing-and-sleep week.

Besides work, homework and church activities, I need to get Alex in to put up brackets for my bookshelves. I initially wanted bricks and actually went to lengths to find out how many bricks/ the best type of brick I needed. Dense block, dense block with hole, dense block with 2 holes, red brick, grey brick, charcoal blocks, bricks that can be painted, bricks that can't... quite interesting stuff really. Thing is, the bricks I needed/ chose would have cost me about 12 pounds altogether and weighed about 15kg each. Would I rather get someone to come in to fix brackets for me for free and wait a while longer or be an impatient I-want-it-now(!) person and pay up and wonder what to do with them later? I chose the former (and chose to wait - it is always good to cultivate patience) and I hope that in a week's time, I'll get my desired bookshelves.

Sarah, Elena and I have taken down the previous tenants' poster of three fingered, jaundice-inflicted people (The Simpsons) and put up a far better poster (subjective) of a mother elephant and her calf.

I did another sily thing this week. I was so fed-up with my skin peeling around my nose/ T-zone/ chin area that I impulsively (can anything good come out of a masochist with impulsive tendencies?) grabbed my nail buffer and buffed my skin away. I can tell you that it hurt. But I just gritted my teeth and imagined all the little flakes of dead skin running for their lives. Here comes the buffer! After my stint of madness, I tried to cover the corpses (of flakes) with moisturiser and ooooh, it really hurt. It was like having (mild) acid poured onto my face. How do I know how it feels like to have acid on the skin? Cos back in 4th form, I poured acid on my hand just to see how it felt like. It wasn't the strongest of acids so I don't have a scar like Edward Norton does in Fight Club but it was inconvenient enough for the feeling to etch itself in memory forever.

The 8 rules of Fight Club;
1. You do not talk about Fight Club
2. You DO NOT talk about Fight Club
3. If someone taps/ faints etc, the fight is over
4. Only 2 men to a fight
5. Only one fight at the time
6. No shoes or shirts on during the fight
7. The fight lasts for as long as it has to
8. If you're new to Fight Club, you have to fight

And on that note, I'm off to Tax law.

Time and issues

"I have to be more efficient!"
I mumble to myself
as I stumble out of bed.
"More efficient!"
as I wash my sleepy head.
"More efficient!"
dragging my feet
to pay the bills,
"More efficient!"
as I try to sleep
between meals.
"More efficient!"
as I check my bank balance,
"More efficient!"
as I blank into a trance.
"More efficient!"
as I yawn AGAIN in class (how infruriating),
"More efficient!"
as I try and catch a bus.
"More efficient!"
even though everything seems wrong,
"More efficient!"
when the day extends too long.
"More efficient!"
when I try to share Good News,
"More efficient!"
It's not up to me to choose.
"More efficient!"
I should try to make me better,
"More efficient!"
Should I follow by the letter?
"More efficient!"
as the rebel in me grows,
"More efficient!"
where do my priorities go?
"More efficient!"
Perhaps it's just a verse,
"More efficient!"
Could it also be a curse?

I made the above up spontaneously and even now I cringe at the word spontaneous because it implies impulsiveness, which is not discipline. I guess on one hand it's easy to look at the lives of other people and marvel at their efficiency; they do things you wish you had time to do. I don't know... more efficient, less efficient. Probably nothing wrong being efficient, until one takes the meaning of efficient to the extreme and commits it to every fine detail in life until the more important things lose their importance and are forced to make way for 'efficiency.' At such a point, is that life efficient anymore?

I have decided to join the CU small group on Monday nights at Tara's. At the moment, I am perhaps doing this albeit grudgingly but maybe a few more well-placed activities will help me focus on the time I have and use it productively. I woke up this morning to discover that I was overdrawn. That has never happened to me before and I hope, will never happen again. A few calls later and I managed to transfer some money from X to Y and am no longer overdrawn but it has jarred a few things in my system. One cannot be too careful with monetary arrangements. My accounts will be even more heavily scutinised from now on. No more random shopping spree in Argos or Brixton.

I supposed that I would go to Compelled by Love, evangelistic training at All Souls. However, as I did not book my place in time, I shall have to forgo that pleasure. On one hand I am annoyed, on the other, relieved that I will not have to dig deeper into my pockets.

Time to go to Tara's.

Saturday, October 23, 2004

The meaning behind...

I managed to get my visa extension yesterday - took about 5 hours minus the trip to Croydon and back but it was worth it for two reasons. Firstly, I will not need to bother about visa extensions for the next 2 years and secondly, I finally managed to find time to read The Case for Christ (Lee Strobbel). From it, I discovered, among other things, that the word 'excruciating' comes from the phrase 'out of the cross.' As my split finger is no where near the agonizing pain experienced by those who were executed through crucifixion, I withdraw my claim to excruciating pain.

I set off for Croydon with only an inkling of where I was supposed to go to. Sure I had to darken the doors of Lunar House last year but I had no expectations of retaining memory to my one off visit. I stopped at East Croyden station and made a split second decision to walk up the ramp and find out whether my memory had taken me to the right place. My eyes travelled along walls and posters taking in information and trying to remember... and then I knew I was in the right place. A huge sign hanging on the wall said, "Welcome to Croydon the Home of Nestle." Nestle - chocolate. Yup, this was the place. However, I wanted more confirmation. I exited the station and found a road sign that pointed the way to Beckenham. Bingo, another point! I remembered thinking that the place sounded like David Beckingham. I found Lunar House in no time and proceeded to line up.

I need to buy things off the net now so tata.

Thursday, October 21, 2004

Excruciating pain

I slit my index finger (to the bone) while opening a tin of cornbeef with a fork. After a fairly considerable time, I thought it would be wise to try stop the bleeding but the blood just continued pouring out. didn't want to wake my housemates up so i wrapped my punctured finger is tissue and continued making breakfast. When I heard Sarah get up, I thought it would be a good time to get a second opinion. So I took te wrapping off and briefly thought that my right index finger and left index finger looked slightly different in terms of both colour and shape. Sarah suggested going to see the doctor to which I recoiled. I've never had a stitch on this ickle body even when I sliced half my finger off with a paper cutter when I was a teen and I wasn't about to give in just yet. After a while longer, blood stopped running to my finger - I put it down to fibroginosis etc etc - and I could take a sneak peek into what my finger looked like inside. I looked just about pry apart my skin from the ligamen and could make out a hollow cavity not unlike chicken when I'm stuffing it with butter. I even wondered if I could perform minor liposuction on my finger; after all, there was a hole there already, the hardest part was through. But Sarah (and by this time, Elena) both decided they needed to take charge and insisted I put antiseptic on. It hurt. Very much. I then plastered my finger with an inch and a half long plaster which immobiled my finger. It has been two days now and things like washing one's hair, holding a pencil/ pen and other such things are an absolute chore. I can't even type without flattening other keys as well so right now I'm reduced to typing with my third finger on my right hand - I only use 2 fingers to type. The pain has subsided to the point where I temporarily forgot that I am badly cut and in the duration it took me to change my plaster, I managed to aggravate it again.

Christmas is 9 weeks away, Fern and Philip informed me over This Morning (daytime programme) and I still haven't decided whether I want to go home or not. Should I go to Germany to spend time with Ben or stay in London with the Grinch or to Cardiff to see reindeer or what? When should I start sending out Christmas cards? When should I start making my 'Who's naughty and nice' list? How much should I spend? Should I buy useless presents like an ice-cream maker or sensible socks with the Simpsons on them? Can someone buy me a dog? Or a horse? Or a picture of an animal? Preferably a large mammal - not feline or equine as I have too many of those. JOKING. Sheesh, man.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Christmas presents

I have been shopping online - the new age of retail therapy. Among other things I have considered purchasing either for myself or for my potential Christmas present recipients, include Revlon's nail care kit, chocolate, a handbook on boyfriend training, a smoothie maker, a head massager, posters, more chocolate, books - How To Speak Dog, the Book of Bunny Suicides and Classic 007 quotes - an 8-knife set series 11300, Hinari style men's grooming pack, Shrek 2 and etc.

It's time I headed home for my cornbeef and rice dinner withe the very strong possibility of a king size snicker bar on the way to the bus stop. Tomorrow morning I'll be off to Croydon to start a two day process of my visa application. I might take either Animal Husbandry or Robinson Crusoe (or both) along. But maybe I should take along something more substantial... like my Trusts textbook.

Jingle Bells

It's never too late to celebrate Christmas and it's definitely never too early. Sarah, Elena and I were chatting about our prospective Christmas party, fully equipped with stockings for the 3 of us, popcorn tinsel, crepe paper and lots of presents. I need to buy more Christmas wrapping even though I have 3 rolls in the cupcoard somewhere. There's the whole "Should I go home for Christmas this year?" debate going on in my head. On one hand, my bro's birthday and Christmas are more or less within the same season and I have not been home for Christmas in the last... 4 years? On the other hand... I don't know. Maybe it's the strangeness of not watching the Grinch at 4pm while indulging in a tuna sandwich that prevents me from confirming my decision to go home.

I have 10 minutes more of break, 10 of which I have already spent eating 2 chocolate bars, a sausage delight sandwich and typing. Will get back after my shift, which ends at 4 today. I will be scouring for boxes to put my presents in and browsing shop windows and catalogues as Christmas jingles down the bend.

Monday, October 18, 2004

Gullible Debbie

Friday night. I was on my way to Victoria's dinner party when a most tragic thing happened - my phone smahed on the pavement. "And how did this happen?" one might ask. I was standing at the traffic lights and pressed the little button with my finger on my right hand to summon the green man but instead of lifting my finger from the button, my brain told my LEFT hand to let go of whatever was in its possession. That happened to be my mobile. Gone. Smitherins. Despite it all, I enjoyed Vic's party very much except for the brief moment when a certain Barney (as in the purple dinosaur but really his name was Barnabas) kissed me on the cheek. All I did was ask for his name again because in the muddle of things, my hearing was slight blurred and so I tapped my ear to indicate that I had failed to catch his name. I expected an answer to a question and got in return something rather unexpected. I froze, as I do and said or shrieked, "What was that for? I asked for your name!" Ahhh... suddenly his face cleared and he recognised the fact that I was not some crazy person asking for random kisses from blatant strangers *shudder.*

Watched Bridget Jones' Diary when I arrived home from the party to cheer myself up over my broken phone. I know this sounds stupid and very unlike me (or maybe very like me, only not the me most of you might know, if that makes any sense) but Colin Firth is yummy. Brown, curly hair is the way to go. Even better when coupled with a melancholic air of near arrogance and long winter coat. Unfortunately, people like that are only good to watch and not very good to be involved with.

Saturday. I had Homework Helpers in the morning (and what I'm about to tell you is very exciting stuff) and I discovered that my tutee is undertaking a study of the book of Luke as his Religious Education for the year. God works in mysterious ways. I was about to tell the mother that I was not sure if I could spend the time with her children after all (and feel rubbish about it afterwards) but after this bit of news, I can't wait to go back next week. Obviously, he'll expect my help in other subjects like Science and English too but I just think that this is such a wonderful opportunity. He also told me that he had never heard about the Christian message before he had to study it at GCSE although he knew that there was a guy called Jesus. The message at St Helens today was about God spreading the gospel through us, his chosen people and I feel so privileged to be part of that.

Homework Helpers ended, I made my way to the Strand where I got myself a new phone. Don't worry folks, the number's still the same but now I have a blue screen, caller ID and Vivaldi's Winter movement of the Four Seasons Concerto - I learn so much living with a music student. I was only supposed to spend X but I spent X, Y and Z because I was naive and thought that the salesman was sooo nice and charming that I should just oblige him and buy loads of side orders, which cost quite a bit. So it is true. A year at Uni and I still get swept away by charming salesmen. What on earth am I learning at Uni??!!?? *Sigh* I really should be more hard-nosed. Those are the moments I find, when I feel I should tighten my grip on reality and lose all namby-pamby notions of romantic ideals and sweet talking gentlemen.

My purchase was followed by a trip to Daniel's place with Sarah, where we got lost - again - and went round and round in circles before finding our way out of a mad maze and into the street where Daniel lived.

Rushed home to wash my hair and preened myself for Daryl's party. Was late but so were a few others and Sonia so patiently waited for us latecomers whilst the earlier party moved ahead. Shot some pool at Daryl's and lost by a ball, had scrummy chocolate pancakes, carrots and Bailey's glide for dinner and played a few rounds of Mortal Combat with JP, Daryl and Holty. Too many rounds later, I started saying silly things like, "Repetition breeds perfection," which if I had won, would ring true but seeing as I lost...

Sunday. Woke up at 2pm after knocking mself out at 3am the night/ day (use whatever you will depending on whether you would like to remain politically correct or otherwise) before. Had just enough time to hoover, clear the living room, consume a banana and a bowl of curry instant noodles with an egg and shower before it was time to go to church. And now I sit here type, type, typing away. I have to rise early tomorrow cos I have to be in at 9.30 and I still have reading to do.

Friday, October 15, 2004

Partee!

Yes! The weekend has arrived and I have my social life packed once again from tonight til... and I believe I deserve it, no? I rose at 6am to study Property today because I was determined to know something when/if the tutor called on me but she didn't and I didn't volunteer :) Was reading some Manual book using my bed as a table and a space hopper as a chair. Might as well breathe some life into studying if I have to do it. Had a quarter of a Ham and Pinapple pizza (Adam's leftover dinner) and a bowl of carrot/ onion/ corriander soup for breakfast. I have only just finished a 3-hour shift and am going home to freshen up and then swoosh off to Kensington for Victoria's birthday. Tomorrow morning I have to buy bricks (or maybe the brick-people will be nice and just give me 20 bricks), tutor my 'homework family' at 11 and after that to Daniel's with Sarah to collect necessary nutrition. A few of us will be meeting at 6pm to go to Daryl's where we shall spend hours of good fun (hopefully watching Jurassic Park and eating yogurt and corriander popodums). Sunday will be the usual and my shift on Monday starts at 9.30am. In between I shall have to prepare for Moral Philosophy - I have not one but TWO lots of reading because my scatter brained tutor decided to miss me out in the distribution of notes. I think the possibility of me knowing anything for the next class is quite minute but I shall relish the chance to try anyway.

It has been a hectic 2 weeks; my brain creaked into action, my internal alarm was murdered and revived (I'm starting to think I might be a morning person after all) and my sensors had to get used to the feel of unfamiliar books, unfamiliar sights and smells... but I think they're pretty settled now and after a round or two of syrup expresso shots, I might be able to produce adrenaline at will, constantly. I made my first latte today so there's more reason to celebrate and I have been eyeing a certain expresso machine should anyone consider an appropriate Christmas present. I have begun my collection of boxes to stuff my presents in and my tiny room will look even tinier still. That said, I need to dash if I am to arrive at Vic's presentable and birthday-ish looking.

Rush Hour 3

The story of my life.

Although it's only been a day between this and my last blog, I feel as though time slowed down and I was caught in a brief suspension between this world and the world of yesterday - hazy memories floating like jellyfish, as though I've aged considerably since Wednesday (and in some ways, I have... by a day and a half) or cracked my skull too hard on my law books (as if) and am currently suffering from amnesia. It has been cold. Too cold. Francois happily announced to me that this winter shall be the coldest winter yet in a very long time and that it would start late October, missing autumn altogether. I think he needs to enhance his powers of observation as he asked me if I was cold whilst I was blue in the face, trying to don neon mittens, a jacket and a heavy winter coat while some people are still waltzing about in skimpy summer outfits - hey, it aint my skin that's gonna lose all sense of touch whe we're octogenarians.

Cold hands, cold feet and legs drapped in clashing coloured socks, all snug and warm with a hot water bottle under my jumper... that's what I like best about winter. If only I had a dog... or a cat.

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Seize the moment

I'm on my break from working at the Student Union and with a chicken/ bacon sandwich in my digestive tract, the engines are running and I can feel energy surging, if not only momentarily, through my system. Michael (the) Champion - although I would prefer my champion to be my late dog, Buck, who I dreamt about last night - is sitting next to me without realising that I am writing about him. Pink and white striped shirt, tartan tie and... red socks. That's KCLSU's president for you (not to mention body language oozing with arrogant confidence), unless my eyes deceive me and I'm not looking at the good man himself. I wonder (and not for the first time) if I could pass for a spy.

RML tonight but before that work finishes at 3, after which I have to dash to the Strand to ensure the 2 weeks worth of Moral Philosophy notes owed me by a certain Stanton-Ife. I also need an ATHENS password from the Maughan Library to help me get into Westlaw and Lexis to read cases which my beloved coursemates have all done. At 4 I have to meet up with Kate for the audio/ visual thing for Only One life, which I am still not-so-eagerly anticipating. But the challenge breeds adrenaline and right now, I need all the adrenaline my glands can produce to get me through.

Much prayer is needed all around. I will email those I have yet to reply to and shall not send anymore emails to people who tire of receiving them. A CU freshers' dinner at EDS to organise, a make-shift bookcase to make, bills to sort (although Elena does quite a good job doing that), a headache to cure, the doctor to unload, the chemist to reload... I think I need to go cos my break is over.

Monday, October 11, 2004

A londoner?

The weekend has been busy as usual.

Saturday: Went to see my 'family' as I will be their homework helper for as long as I can. My tutees are a 10 year old boy to whom I had to try explain fertilization during our first session - more embarrassing for me than him - and a 16-year old GCSE student. This might be a good opportunity for me to brush up on Chemistry and Biology, not to mention having the chance to share the gospel to him as he is also taking up Religious Education.

A trip to Brixton for affordable retail therapy followed suit. I bought bubble bath from Imperial Lather, heel grips and 5 books; Bridget Jones' Diary, Survival of the Elephants, White Dragon, Chocolate Therapy and Michael Crichton's Terminal Man (I think? It had 'terminal' in it for sure, but whether man followed after, I have yet to confirm). Went to Tesco for lightbulbs and bananas and watched the X-factor with housemates in the evening while Elena made tiger cake.

Sunday: Cleaned the bathrooms - my designated duty for the week, did some reading, talked to my parents and brother, digested some tiger cake, went for Homework Helpers' training and St Helens afterwards.

I will try get some brickes this week to create a makeshift multi-storey bookshelf as I need more space and since my room is so small, the only way I can go is up. Will post a birthday card to my dad after this then go for my 1-2-1. I try get up by 8.30am latest when I don't have to get up til 12 noon and when I need to be in college by 9, 7.30am it is or 7 if I choose to walk.

Over the weekend, I was told, on 3 separate occasions, 3 different things that seemed fairly consistent and pointed towards a need for me to slow down. I was told, not in any particular order, that I was spending too much time in other people's worlds and not enough in my own, that I was worried the world would catch up with me therefore was always in a hurry to be ahead and that I was a typical 'Londoner.' What the last of the three means exactly, I'm not too sure but my guess is the person thinks I am a very busy bee. Something I need to think about? Maybe tonight. But for now, 1-2-1 it is.

Friday, October 08, 2004

Hypochondriac

Although I'm sure I will enjoy Leslie Turano's teaching, in having her as tutor for both my Trusts and property seminars, I feel that it is my duty to attend at least one or the other a week so as to avoid her noticing that I've been away for a whole week. This is not to say that I will only go to one or the other but there is a sense of obligation that beckons even when one is ill. For example, I couldn't attend Tuesday's Trusts because I was down with migraine. Today I planned on going to see the doc to:

Receive prescription for my migraine,
Get my blood tested (becasue I'm sure I'm plagued with some sort of bacterial infection),
Ask for medication to prevent returning back to a state of the flu (my housemates have finally caught my month-long bug and this morning I awoke to find that I felt phlem in my throat - not again!),
Check out my leg/ spine/ anything that would be the probably cause of my having a limp in my right leg for the past 5 days approx.

The surgery (that's 'clinic' for those not in the UK) opens after 10, my seminar starts at 11. There is insufficient funding in the time bank to go to both so I have decided to go to my seminar even if I might collapse due to some mysterious virus yet unknown to man. Since Leslie is my personal tutor as well, I wonder if it would be a good thing to tell her of my slight hypochondriac tendencies. I say 'slight' because I don't think I'm obsessed by health (else I would eat more greens) but I do think I have almost all the symptoms to illnesses described in almost every medical journal I read. Last year I spent so much time browsing the Internet for fascinating facts to line my brain with and opened the door to imagination overload. I thought I had meningitis (briefly) and pressed a glass onto the surface of my skin (a way of detecting meningitis) so hard over and over again that when I thought I could finally see some purple mark signalling the deadly ill that could rob me of life (oooh... drama queen), it was just me bruised black and blue.

So it's off to seminars on equitable rights vs legal rights and flying freeholds and chattels and annexations and otherwise.

Thursday, October 07, 2004

In a little while...

I shall be given Generic training in Tutu's aka a mouthful of health and safety regulations in a bar not best known for cleanliness. The fuzzy headed monster (me) is still... fuzzy headed but I managed to sit through a Tax tutorial and formed a little study group with 4 others, as requested by Mr Wesel. A strong intuition is forming in my brain that suggests I need to drill a hole through my skull to release pressure. Any more pressure on my neuro-capilaries and one would be able to pressure cook rice/ meat/ soup in my grey matter.

Last night I felt ill, hence my absence from RML. Instead Elena and I ordered Indian take-away (mixed vegetable curry and pashwari naan) at 9.15 for 10 to arrive at our door :) - it's the little things in life... Take-away food is so good yet sooo bad, especially after one has just finished off a plate of bacon and onion linguine topped with mild chedder. Yummmm.

Thoughts about events running through my mind at the moment include:
Generic Training
Talk on full time ministry - I'm helping with catering but I want to listen to the talk as well...
Obey Your Thirst
Only One Life - Roger Carswell is preaching this year
Christmas

Have to dash. Gotta go. See you soon.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

5 days notice

This is going to be, in the words of Priss, epic.

I have been away for 5 days - too long by five - and something interesting happened everyday in spite of my being asleep til 4 pm (although not technically, as you will see if you choose to read on) for 2 out of those 5 days. So, throw in 5 days worth of information, a cluttered mind and a woozy head and I'll see what I can rummage around and come up with.

Saturday - Was not feeling well (it is quite strange that not feeling well is nothing out of the ordinary for me for some reason that I do not know except that maybe I do not eat enough green, fibre-like substance known as vegetables). At that point in time, I had spent a week in college; a very minute week it was to be fair, because most seminars and lectures were shortened during the first week and in one instance, the tutor did not even show up. This time last year I was buzzing with excitement. This time round I was fading to the hum drums in my head and found myself needing to sleep but not getting enough. 'Enough' meaning at least 8 hours, which is the bare minimum for me, 10 is my norm. But I rose at 7.30am anyway to sort my laundry. Then I went back to sleep. At 11.30 I pushed myself out of bed again to hang the laundry. 75% into my laundry, the sky decided to let loose so I had to bring it all in and hang it on chairs and bits of wire; I cannot for the life of me recollect their proper technical term. Went back to sleep. Woke up at 4. I had Carly's belated birthday dinner to attend. What not to wear. Peered out into the sky and picked up the nearest umbrella to me just before I left, which if you read on my dear reader, will find that it became my undoing, so to speak. Popped round Joe's to see if he, Sean and Tara were going anytime soon and met his mum cos they were all having dinner together. We're going to ride horses one day although we have yet to set out a date. I'm sure there's tonnes she can teach me. Oh... lovely horses, they smell so good, they smell so fine...
Carly's party. Helped make pizzas, slice mushrooms, clear tables etc etc although it must be said that Carly, Daniel and Lauren all put it together quite well. I bought Carly a belly button ring; very very pretty, if I dare say so myself, with blue crystals and about an inch long. Halfway through I thought I caught a whiff of Daniel - Bold washing powder - but Chris Dudley was standing in front of me, confusing my senses even more. Then it hit me that perhaps Chris used Bold washing powder as well.

Time to go home. It was raining pretty heavily and Holty and I had to catch the tube. I suddenly realised that the umbrella I had brought with me was Holty's cos he had left it at his ex place, which is now my place. Therefore, when we parted to the Jubilee and Northern line respectively, he took his umbrella with him, leaving me to wonder at the possibility of the rain stopping just long enough for me to run from the station back home. No such luck. If anything, the rain the rain came down with a vengeance just as I stepped out of the shelter of the station. Great. What else was there to do but start the arduous journey home. On one hand I was muttering to myself that chilvary was dead in this world but on the other hand, it was his umbrella. Walking down the last stretch of road on my way home, Matt Redman's 'So good to be loved by you' came floating into my mind. One verse stood out at that point in time, "You give me hope like the spring rain." Oh yeah, bucketloads of hope to wash this cynic's pessimistic behaviour out to Timbuktu, which I will have you know, is an actual place in Africa. Hope. So fragile, so necessary. So needed.

Walked through my front door dripping like a wet hen. I say 'wet hen' because unlike ducks, hens' feathers absorb water so they're more apt to be absolutely drenched. I also say hen becasue hens do not like being wet and they appear quite miserable, although one exception to this duck-hen rule would be Mr Scrooge McDuck, who is a duck but looks miserable anyway. Dripped off, settled into warm snuggly clothes, then dozed off. Woke up at 8am the next day. Was supposed to help Sam with Sunday school but something in my head told me my upchuck reflexes (courtesy of 10 Things I Hate About You) were particularly sensitive and that I had temporarily become one of those products which state, 'Keep away from children.' So I rang Sam, apologised and went back to doozyland.

Monday - we're getting there folks! Had my one-to-one with Sophie during which she suggested, to my horror, that I should appear on an audio/ visual presentation for Only One Life to give a 'top-tip' for evangelism. I was clearly sufficiently horrified and right now that is a grey area. What should I do should she ask me again? Had my first Moral Philosophy seminar as well and I can see that this is going to be a subject of intense debate, where I will probably find a comfortable seat, sit in the corner, sponge everything in, go home and think about it, take down personal notes in my brain and write it out on paper to be taken into exams. Aristotle's Ethics and Plato's Republic are among some of the very interesting books I hope to finish reading. Monday night. Should I go to the Law party or trek up to Mile End to collect my Tax law books off Holty, which I really needed? So many questions (the Riddler, Batman Forever; one of my favourite films ever). It took me the whole day to decide. Pros and cons; would I really miss out not going to a party? How desperate was I for those books? Did I want to sort my books out now or could it wait until tomorrow? What would I do at the party?

In the end, I gave Holty a ring and arranged to meet at 9.30am the next day and off to the party I went. Gold dress, blue shoes and purple shawl - and they did match. While at the party, I got some excercise, got to know a few more people and persuaded some freshers that they needed my books. I had long decided before that I was going to leave at 1.30am at the latest and was not going to repeat last year's 3.30am. I left at 12.30 and was in bed by 2.30 after a bowl of instant chicken noodles and a good book.

Tuesday was rush day. After 5 and a half hours sleep, barely enough time to get into dreaming, I had to awake to get to Bank to get my books. Rushed to Bank, waited 15 minutes, got my books and rushed to a bus stop. Waited for half an hour. The 133 had decided to detour that day and I was too immersed in Tax Law to notice. So I had to rush for another bus to catch the 133 on London Bridge. An onslaught of migraine had started to appear the night before and yesterday it reached a crescendo. I quickly emailed my tutor to say I couldn't make it (feeling rubbish doing so because it was my first Trusts seminar and even worse when I discovered that she was my personal tutor as well) and tried to calm my aching head down. About 2 I decided I was feeling slightly better and so went in to work at the Student Union shop for 2.30 until 4 and then I rushed to my Property lecture across the road. Property done, I decided that I was hungry enough to eat so made a move towards International Cafe but stopped to chat to Hazel on the way. When I finally arrived, I discovered that I had missed Sean's testimoney by two minutes but the scones were still there. Took my notepad out to get email adds and one from a certain Albert Joosse threw me off guard. Joose? Juse? Juice? It turned out to be Yow-se and that's NOT 'yowser' as in the expression.

Debating followed after and I snuck out of the door after the last speaker sat down and missed the floor speeches, which are more often than not (although there are exceptions to the rule) wannabe debators who think they can do as well. There is a difference between knowing and thinking. CU was just around the corner and I managed to grab a Twix and a handful of crisps before sitting down. Halfway through singing I felt my head exploding internally and had half a mind (and I really think that I only had half a mind then) to tell Sarah or Elena that I was going home. But I stopped myself because I had promised this guy called David (fresher, religion+philosophy from (?)Bassingstoke) that I would talk to him after CU. So I stuck it out. Pain in the offering (imagine saying that in a very dry and wry manner). Home or not quite. I stopped for Chinese and then we all stopped by the chippy and had our fill back home.

Today I am still, surprise, surprise, unwell. I again have half a mind to go to a doctor but what am I supposed to say? I get tired all the time? I like to sleep? I get erratic migraines? Do you think I have chronic fatigue? I think I'm ill but I don't know what? I have generic training tomorrow - some health and safety instructions ladida and I need to get stuck into my reading. I need to get Peter Singer's book on Ethics and have to ask the law faculty for my ATHENS password and username that I never knew I needed til now but for today, rest and more rest is what I am opting for. Maybe a trip to Tesco and a budget review will be on the books as well.

Now I need to send a few emails, encourage a few people, enquire after various issues and drink more water. That's 5 days notice for you and that did not even include the profound thoughts of little intelligence that I hoo-hum about.

Friday, October 01, 2004

Kingston today

Sold my books yesterday - but not all of them and I gave the fresher who bought my books a 5 pound reduction of the overall price because he didn't bring enough money. Oh well, sometimes we have to be nice in order to ensure that our species will continue to flourish. I also undertook training yesterday at the Waterloo shop and my formal work begins next Tuesday; stocking, pricing, retail stuff, seling tickets, clearing tables, making coffee are all in the job description. So that's a neat little bundle to help my transport fees along.

Will be going to Kingston in half and hours time with Elena to get her bike for me to use, her book, Ethics for me to read for Moral Philosophy and fabric paint for me to play around with. a little trip somewhere after a hard week's work. The funny thing is that the past week, although seemingly tough and nerve wrecking, is only the beginning. maybe things will get easier once I've eased myself back into Uni 24/7 activity mode. I need to buy books off Holty and might browse Amazon for other Moral Philosophy books I'll need this year. My Tax tutor looks like a younger, blonder Cliff Richard and he (sort of) put Moral Phiklosophy down as one of the less useful law subjects (paraphrasing) so I'm not too sure whether I like him or not. He asked the class why we took Tax and we had to give personal answers. Most people went to great lengths to explain in breadth and depth that they worked in a bank/ law firm over the summer and spoke to many great and intelligent people who told them this and that and that's why they were sitting there. Ooooh.... people like that grate on my already raw tipped nerves. I'm not sure whether they're genuinely so caught up in their airy fairy world of 'I want to be a kick-butt lawyer' or whether they just wanted to make a good first impression on the teacher. From a survey I carried out, first impressions are only 41% correct and even then, personalities change. I honestly speaking, have no idea why I'm taking tax, other than the fact that it was recommended by Monica, I thought I would be taught by her and I knew people who were going to do the course and knew people who did the course so that I could get second hand books off them without working too hard.

It's almost one, I have to scoot cos I need to quickly glance through Amazon and then rush to Waterloo station to meet Elena. So til I see you.

Thursday, September 30, 2004

New day

I am at work right now :)

Yes, I am WORKING! Or at least I hope they wouldn't kick me out after training day (which is today for 2 hours). I was punctual and arrived (with a smile as Jamie instructed me to on the bus) even as i was nearly drenched with rain and had to fumble around with an umbrella and two loads of books which i am going to sell today! Money rolling in... time to reimburse all that shopping and second year books. If I get the job, it'll be 50 hours paid probation. I hope to work 10 hours a week (approx.) so looking good. I have a tax lecture later, followed by a tax tutorial, during which I will hopefully find out who my personal tutor is for the year. Had D J Hayton for Trusts yesterday and I wish he were my grandad; a very cool one he'll make, storytelling and the lot. My attention span however is as flighty as the most flighty thing you can think of.

Better dash for induction to work. Might get back to you lot later about Spanish Fiesta the night before when my books are sold :)

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

More happenings

I have time to spare before my next lecture so I thought, "Why not?" Some read in the library, some take notes, some blog.

If my Property lecture is cut short today (even though Tax was not), I will enjoy high tea in St David's room. If not, I shall enjoy wine after debating. It was quite amusing to see freshers frantically buying books in Blackwells. Although I do not assume that they will study less than I did, I do wonder how many times they will actually look into that heavy and expensive chunk of processed tree after this week. What I really mean is, "Just buy my books." Got a few more numbers, shook a few more hands, saw a few more faces and guided in advance, a few more people in the direction of St David's and free food. I am so hungry.

Updated my CV, walked about rather aimlessly, I have to shamelessly admit. I'm just getting used to the whole students-being-around thing again and at least this year I know that there are people who might actually know less than I do. Ahh, stop being pessimistic. Be optimistic, be daring, ride a bike. My watch is screaming 3.34 and I should go down and mingle with other legal folk.

Officially...

My 'first' day and I had a dappy looking lecturer and a humdrum in my head - migraine on the attack and an electric drill in the background did not do me any favours in Tax today. People tell me that you can either love or hate a lecturer, namely Leslie Turano. I think I quite like her. During attendance, she was making passing comments to her students in order to help herself remember us - as I do too - and she took one look at me, said "small" and moved on. Cool. I have to go off to the bank later to get money out for Freshers' Ball and put much needed money in. I'm also stalking the streets for unsuspecting first years who would be willing to buy my last year books as a current past time. Will email a fresher who has just buzzed to get a list of books of me and I have just contacted Waterloo for an interview to a position they offered my voicemail during Trusts. My next lesson today is at 4pm in FWB after which, debating will commence at 6 and CU will be served after. Tomorrow morning I get a horrendous 9am followed by a day of shopping and a Spanish Fiesta at night.

I'm so excited that I'm going to be in contact with so many non-Christians this year - so many more than last year. It truly is a privilege to be sent out even if doubts creep in and I falter. Am studying 1 Peter this term for my one-to-one and coincidentally, the teaching at CU this term will also be from 1 Peter. For me personally, the main themes of 1 Peter including our identity in Christ and our call to persevere has deeply stirred and encouraged me and so this double whammy is a most welcome helping of Scripture.

Am off now. Will probably publish more if something crops up but til next time.

Monday, September 27, 2004

Yo ho, yo ho

First day of school/ college/ university/ university second year - same thing.

Went to St H for my one-to-one at 1pm. Ate a chicken and mushroom pie. Walked to college for my first lesson of the day and the year - Moral Philosophy at four (the time of day when I'm least philosophical excluding early mornings - only, it would have been my first lesson if the tutor had shown up but he didn't so my first is yet to come... and apparently my tutor's Welsh. This is gonna be exciting.

Pre going to St H, Elena and I had the jitterbugs about going back to college so she chilled out in a bath and I gave my little bro a call and cleaned the kitchen :)

I have to sell my old books off, get money in to but my new books and flip a coin about whether to entrust the selling of my books to the committee. It would be so much easier but would I get a good deal? The power of persuasion (in light of the hundreds of exes wanting to sell off books) can only really work in person. I also have to chat with last year's King's Bench editor to see if she still wants the post this year. If she does, I'll do sub-editing and join the debating society and if she doesn't King's Bench will be all mine for the next two years... muahaha. I have to update my CV as well to distribute to unsuspecting prospective termtime (and some holidays) employers.

I'm going to the Freshers' Party/ Ball next week. Got my dress, need some dancing heels and it should suffice. It's been a whole year since I have been a student at King's. Last year's Freshers' Ball saw my toes getting stepped on and dubious sniffing going on not to mention I was most uncomfortable in a party dress and had the product of Aimee's cosmetic skill plastered on my face - not that she did a bad job, in fact, she did brilliantly. This year, I'm slightly less uncomfortable, or maybe it's just me pretending to be grown up :) The art of pretense is an amazing skill to acquire.

Swing when you're winning and when you're not winning, swing anyway so that the world will think you're still winning and thinking as such, you might actually win.

Friday, September 24, 2004

Life's little mysteries...

1. First Name: Deborah
2. Were you named after anyone? Probably either the judge in Judges or Rebekah's nurse, both from the Bible.
3. Do you wish on stars? Occasionally.
4. Which finger is your favorite? No favs. They're all pretty cute.
5. When did you last cry? Memory is fuzzy at the moment.
6. Do you like your handwriting? Yup :)
7. What is your favourite lunch meat? Iranian barbeque.
8. Any bad habits? Sticking my tongue out trying to taste something that isn't there.
9. What is your most embarrassing CD on the shelf? No CDs on the shelf.
10. If you were another person, would you be friends with YOU? If I were another person, I wouldn't know me so yeah, I'd be friends with me.
11. Are you a daredevil? Pure chicken.
12. Have you ever told a secret you swore not to tell? I don't swear.
13. Do looks matter? Important but not the most important.
14. Have you ever misused a word and it sounded absolutely stupid? I make new words up all the time so most of my words sound stupid anyway.
15. Do you think there is a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow? Hopefully.
16. Do fish have feelings? Yeah, that's why they look sad all the time.
17. Are you trendy? I try stay out of fashion.
18. How do you release anger? Bottle it all in - I tend not to release private formalities.
19. Where is your second home? London.
20. Do you trust others easily? No.
21. What was your favorite toy as a child? Which stage of childhood? Probably books more than toys...
22. What class in school do you think is totally useless? Registration time.
23. Do you keep a journal? It's online and you're reading it.
24. Do you use sarcasm a lot? I'm learning.
25. Have you ever been in a mosh pit? What's a mosh pit?
26. What do you look for in a person? I assume this question refers to males. I used to have a tangible list of 222 things but now it's all mental.
27. What are your nicknames? Debs, Debbie, Deb, Debo, Debster, Debbuh, Debbers, Deeba, Debibo, Haribo, Bebo...
28. Would you bungee jump? What do I get in return?
29. Do you untie your shoes when you take them off? No laces to untie but if they had laces, no.
30. Do you think you are strong? No.
31. What's your favorite ice cream flavour? Anything chocolate, coffee, Baileys, pralines, NO strawberry or any fruity type ice cream.
32. What is your favorite colour(s)? Red, White and Black are tones, not colours.
33. How many wisdom teeth do you have? 4 I think.
34. Are you in love with someone? All the time.
35. How many people have a crush on you right now? Hopefully none.
36. Who do you miss most right now? My brother. Awesome dude.

You wouldn't believe it...

The darn computer erased my entire blog - all 1000 plus words of it so I have to tell you my story all over again. I'll do it in bullet point form. Aaaaaaahhhhhh.....

I am still sick - not puking sick - just flu sick. It's been a month now since Bertorelli with Dekkie. It's due to a malnourished diet, not enough sleep, a locomotive hive of activity and a hereditary stubborn streak. One nostril has ceased functioning.

The first CU of the year was last Tuesday. I had yummy ham sandwiches and cheese Wotsits. Gwilym asked me if I needed stabilisers for my bike then 'apologised' later - a first for anyone making fun of my (lack of) height. I hope to become one of those invinsible bike riders who can crash into a bus and still live (and without the help of life-sustaining machines).

Last Tuesday I also went to see Jo the whole day to keep her company while she interviewed prospective housemates. Knitted quarter of a new scarf in the process. Hot pink and black. Kissed 2 horses outside the Horse Guards Palace.

Elena has been 'commisioned' to design the new CU hoody. I asked her to use Jonah 2:10 as a pivotal point, "And the LORD commanded the fish, and it vomited Jonah onto dry land." I was clinically sane at the time. Although Elena has yet to create the official CU hoody design, we have decided we are going to make custom-made 'Christian' sweaters for ourselves with plain sweaters and fabric paint with the words, "Save your ass" courtesy of Noah's Ark. Quite crude although it will possibly get the message across thus, not seen as the official hoody motto. Could be the new house slogan though...

Am going to see Law freshers and indulge in free food at Knight's Templer tonight and drag them all to CU. Will probably give them all the flu first but they'll thank me for it later.

Got my timetable for this year. Only ONE 9am lecture, Mondays start at 4pm(!) and 12 hours altogether per week. This means I can start arranging one-to-one timetables, fortnightly fish and chip/ free food at Bertorelli luncheons with various people and my working timetable at Student Union. Tim Macklem is not going to teach me Moral Philosophy :( but something in the air tells me all will be well. My one-to-one leader said I take on too much on board. Should I hire another boat?

Carly's birthday this Saturday so everyone who knows her, text or ring to say HI!

Sunday, September 19, 2004

Open House

London is having an 'open house' weekend for peeps to go visit and oooh and aaah at big fancy buildings like the Gherkin. Although I did consider going for this once-in-a-year opportunity, the visible waiting list deterred me from my initial plan and I found myself having lunch in St Andrews and being stuck in the middle of two grown men squabbling over my left-over dessert.

BBQ last night was cool or awesome or whatever other positive adjective you would prefer use. After all, the main point of it was to introduce St Helens peeps I know to other St Helens peeps I know who don't know one another. Now they do. We have enough fried onion, grated cheese, crisps and chocolate brownies/ smoothies/ cake/ Galaxy chocolate to last quite a long while...

It's strange how it's that time of the year again when all my activities are lined up for the year and I seem to have time for everyone but myself. I'm not great with time management in the sense that it's either time all to myself or no time to myself. Call it my naturally extreme tendencies infiltrating another aspect of my life. Productive? Yes. Progressive? I'm planning to cut down last year's CU activities in favour of church service although I still hope to be active in CU. I definitely need more study time this year as well. The year starts in a week and I still have documents to complete, obligations to attend to and friends to catch up with. Sometimes I wish I could still be as naive and trusting as the kids I am charged with in Sunday School. Life doesn't get any easier, that's one thing I know for sure and it definitely will change more often than not, in the most ironic of circumstances, whether I want it to or not. It's awful that I'm always fighting change. I can't win, I get bruised, I get mad but it's my own fault. Stupid.

The BBQ last night for example. I was genuinely pleased that Christians could interact and fellowship with one another but for me personally, despite being genuinely joyful, there was an underlying current of deep dissatisfaction, restlessness and regret and for a split second, I wondered what it was all worth for and whether it was worth anything at all. I flopped into bed after cleaning but woke up about 2 hours later feverish yet wracked with cramps. Question. When one is switching hot and cold, should one make up a hot water bottle and stick on thick woolly clothing to ease the cramps and risk increasing the feverish pitch or throw off the duvet and chill to the bone? I was in pain the whole night until I thought, "Enough of this rubbish" and crouched by the side of my bed and prayed or rather, groaned out. I have a bit of paper in my wardrobe wall that reads Wisdom: It is not in studying nor through experience alone but by communing with God, the source of all wisdom. In a way I felt that God was calling me 'back' to Him after my foolish and impetuous notion that I just didn't want to be a part anymore. Reinstating me, if you like. Reaffirming his love for me. Renewing my mind. Sobering stuff.

Puts a new spin on things in a certain respect, for example in reaching out or fellowshipping with friends who have fallen away from the faith. It's difficult trying to share someone's sorrows or troubles or doubts when there is no idea what they are going through emotionally and spiritually and the high-handed approach of, "If you're really a Christian, you shouldn't feel that way," is tried. However, it's very different when we have been there, done that and still have the Spirit in our hearts after we emerge from the valley of the shadow of death. We will walk through the valley of the shadow of death many times in our short life span and we will be tried and tested in obvious ways and subtle ways. But stand firm because the prize is worth more than the pain of being a stranger in a land that hates us and the reward more precious than the taste of water in a parched and cracked land.

2 Timothy 2:19
Nevertheless, God's solid foundation stands firm, sealed with this inscription: "The Lord knows those who are his," and, "Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness."