ordinary and oddinary

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Archive for the category “Me myself my life”

A thought on Life

I once was sent to a client’s office to print off important documents when I was an office junior. I think it was probably around 50 pages or so. After finishing off the task, I compiled them all correctly and shait..! I realised that each page was slightly bigger than what the A4 print could capture. Picture this. A half of top line, a half of bottom line and both sides’ first half letters (sometimes a word) were missing. You know, to get to a word ‘liberty’ in the first top sentence, you have to guess from the bottom halves only.

I quickly skimmed through them. I was able to decipher some of them without a problem but I was totally at my wits’ end on quite a few others. When I was at those pages, it was frustrating yet challenging. It was infuriating yet encouraging. When I managed to get a few ‘difficult’ pages right, I felt incredibly exhilarated though. It became less troublesome those pages later as many of them were repeated and related. Hooray!

Looking at those pages with my handwriting over, it suddenly hit me hard. Maybe this is life. You never get clear pages. It may look easy from a distance but there are traps everywhere. You sometimes manage to go through some parts perfectly or not so perfectly. However the most important thing is that you carry on. You may come up with a clear answer if you just carry on a few chapters more.

…Well, I know I know..I didn’t have much time to contemplate on life at the client’s premises during my working hours. So I had to reprint them all. This time I made sure they were printed in the correct setting. Unlike this we cannot reset our life, but you know what I was trying to say..

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What is your zodiac sign?

I believe in zodiac signs. I’ve never made friends with people because of their zodiac signs but in the end the long-lasting friends I have seem to belong to a few zodiac signs and they have a similar disposition.

Everybody is different and of course even in the same zodiac sign. I won’t be able to tell what sign they are from the beginning. However I can more or less tell when an  important life event strikes to the person and how she reacts and handles. I guess it’s because your zodiac sign is a raw quality with which you were born. You are shaped and influenced by the surroundings and people close by throughout your life, and of course by your upbringing. Nevertheless, when a something big happens to you, which requires your swift judgement, there you go. Your zodiac sign calling! (This is my theory ok? :-))

Well, It will give me a more accurate prediction if I spend some time together with the person. Knowing their zodiac signs helps me understand them better. For the same reason, it helps me feel less awkward about myself in the way I think about something or someone too. Knowing myself (and my weaknesses) is good, isn’t it?

I’m a Cancerian. Cancerians are well known for home loving, nurturing and emotional characters. I think that’s very true. Being emotional and having changeable moods don’t always come nicely, but I try hard not to let my sentimentality rule me. Cancerians tend to be creative. They need outlets to express their creativity. That’s why I write, cook and go to galleries. It’s not just a hobby, for me it keeps my sanity. I become really cranky and irritable if I carry on my mundane life without a big dose of above outlets. Cancerians sometimes trap into private life too much, however it’s not in their nature. They have to come out to play and migle with people. This energises them. Well I can’t agree more. I love my own company but I do need socialising. I mean it’s totally necessary.

Being a cancerian is hard. The worst part of my characters is to hold grudge and to overthink. They both are related to ‘sentimentality’. I wish I were more cool about things like Leo or Libra.

I’ve found a uncannily accurate astrology website. Check it out, you will be surprised!

http://www.astrology.com.au/astrology/12-signs-of-the-zodiac/

 

 

Eureka

All the years, I’ve been misled. I’m gutted.
Yet I’m glad that I now know it and will never misbuy.

My bra size is NOT 34A, it is 32B!

That’s why my bras illfit me. The cups are flatter, I mean they cover wider area but don’t have depth inside,  and  there was always some room in the back.  I have had to adjust my bra continuously because it goes up and up and up!!!

Some time ago I bought a 32B (by accident) and whenever I put that on, it stays where it should be. I can feel that it lifts my assets (hm hmm). However I didn’t take too much notice of it. I still believed my size was 34A. A bra fitter once told me too. Well, maybe she wasn’t the competent one.

Recently, I went on a mini holiday to La Barrosa (Chiclana, Spain) and bought a new swimsuit because I had left mine at home. There were not many available in the shop and I chose a nice black one. I put the top part on and I felt..so right. I mean it wasn’t too comfortable (in a good way) and I could feel it was there for a reason. I checked the size and it was 32B. That was it. That was my EUREKA moment!

Wow. What a relief. A 32B is more readily available than a 34A.
Gotta buy loads of bras. 🙂

 

My lunch dilemma

Once upon a time, I worked at a company which had a cafeteria and provided a free lunch. The food was generally not bad. However I complained (to myself mostly) that I would like to go out and eat, the menu was a bit monotonous or more specifically the meat tasted rubbery and so on. In retrospect, I want to hide myself in a small rat hole! How bloody arrogant and ungrateful was I!  I now sincerely apologise to the chefs at that company who cooked me a stress-free meal every working day. Just for that I could go back to that job. Hmmm.. maybe that’s not 100% true, but you know what I mean. 🙂

Sorting out lunch is a day-to-day battle for me.
I really want to have a good lunch because it will help me keep away from all the rubbish food I end up eating in the evening. It will probably help me shed a couple of pounds.

I normallyhave a cuppa with a couple of sweet biscuits for a breakfast. No problem there. I sometimes eat fairly ‘nasty’ snacks during the morning and I don’t get hungry till about 2 or 3pm. I’ve got one hour for lunch but… the thing is that I prefer use this time at the gym.

Hence the real problem starts there. After my workout, I need to eat something. As Mcdonald is close by, I sometimes get a £1 cheeseburger and bring in to the office. I’m not a big fan of burgers but it comes in handy. I also go to Morrison to buy a couple of chicken roast thighs or drumsticks – this is highly unreliable because they tend to be sold out by the time I pop by and they have increased the price from 45p to 65p per each gradually for the last few months for an even smaller size. I’m not happy about it at all, so not buying them is kind of my silent protest. Oh, I go to Morrison’s cafeteria to have a proper lunch at times (resulting in skipping my workout session) but it is not exactly cheap and most importantly the food is boring and heavy. Even if I want to, one hour is not sufficient to go to a restaurant and order a proper dish let alone enjoy it.

Since I make a lunch box for Mark every day, it would be the most practical idea to make one more for myself. However, I really don’t want to do it. From bringing a lunch box (and putting in my beautiful bag) to eating in the office, everything about this whole packed lunch idea is so unglamorous and off-putting. Furthemore, eating my own cooked food in the office is something I’d rather keep as private. It’s too personal to share.

Well, I could compromise to bringing something *uncooked* into the office. I could less offensively bring a home-made salad, a sandwich, boiled eggs, tuna tins, etc.  Oh no, it still doesn’t sit nicely in my head. So uncool.

I wish I didn’t have to eat lunch. (Actually I’d rather starve than eat something tasteless.)
I wish I didn’t feel hungry at all at lunch (Sometimes I don’t.)
I once tried a gigantic breakfast to hold til dinner but it didn’t work for me. I felt even more hungry at lunchtime and ended up eating a roast dish.
Alas..it’s more like putting out fires on a daily basis.

…The perfect solution would be somebody delivers a tasty meal every day. I would still have to eat it in the office but if it were pretty to look at and professionally cooked by somebody else, I would be able to accept it. It would be fashionable and impersonal.

Something weird about myself

Do you have anything weird about yourself?

I do and quite a few. I only realised this could be ‘unusual’ after observing others for a long time…

1. I always sleep on the side of the bed closest to the bedroom door. It doesn’t matter if it’s on the right side or left side, or in the house or in a hotel.  I always choose to sleep on the side closer to the bedroom door. Come to think of it, I was like that even when I was a kid or a single girl.

2. I eat sweetcorn horizontally in rows using lower teeth. I mean like a forklift truck I lift up two or three corns very carefully with lower teeth and eat. As a result my cobs are very neat and clean. There’s absolutely no waste. I take pride in my finished cobs!

3. My little fingers are visibly bent outwards because my piano teacher forced to open between the pinkies and ring fingers with a ruler repeatedly to make them reach farther when I was a child. My dad found it out later and got livid. He nearly took her to the court!

4. I don’t eat organs of animals. That’s probably why I’ve never tasted chicken liver pâtés. I just don’t like the idea of it. Now I admit it’s becoming a problem as I want to see myself in the food industry!

5. I don’t eat chicken and eggs (or any combination of family members) at the same time. I feel like I’m committing mini genocide.

6. I don’t walk under scaffolding – I think it’s purely because I’m scared of something falling on me. I’d rather walk on the road to avoid it.

7. When I blow nose, I close one nostril by pressing my finger against one side of my nose and blow gently out the open nostril. Actually it’s not weird, it’s just smart and effective. My dad taught it to me when I was a kid, and since then I did not understand people who didn’t do it and made huge noise! 

That’s all for today. Oh dear, Monday is so slow.

Abuse of disabled parking bays

Mark’s letter is published in the chronicle today.

I don’t expect the situation will get much better but we’ve got nothing to lose, do we?

This woman, who’s living in the same block, also has a blue badge. That’s fine if she uses the car. No, actually, I don’t understand how someone like her is entitled to a blue badge. She is claimed to have a problem with her arm, however carries Morrisons’ shopping bags like anything. Her mobility is perfect. She can walk anywhere for God’s sake! Whatever reason is, she is a blue badge holder and I cannot change that.

However what angers me is that she doesn’t drive the car. Her father comes and picks her up in the morning. And the car showing the blue badge? Her husband uses it for the commutes. That way he can always privatise the disabled parking bay. Though it’s is an offence, he gets away with it every f**king single day. No he just does it so naturally that everybody would think he’s a blue badge holder. Some people just don’t have conscience. I damn those people. I curse them.

I’ve sent letters to Traffic commission, Ministry of Transport, Police, you name it, for the last few years but I feel like I’ve been talking to a bloody wall!

This is a last resort to voice the issues to public in Gibraltar. At least every person in high authority will read the Chronicle and I hope that those thick-skinned immoral neighbours also read it too.

Dear Sir,

I’m a disabled badge holder due to my severely impaired mobility caused by brain cancer. I would like to raise two issues with which I’ve been struggling for years.

I’ve seen the police checking disabled parking bays to see whether the blue badge is clearly visible on parked cars. However, the problem is that they can’t check whether the holder was present in the car before it was parked.

Also I’ve sent an email to the Traffic commission four months ago if they could possibly increase the number of disabled parking bays nearby as I am hardly able to use a disabled parking bay due to the growth in the number of blue badge holders in the neighbourhood since then. In all fairness, I had requested the demarcation of a disabled bay five years ago and it was done within days.

Today I have received a reply from the Traffic commission and this is what they say: ‘I have been instructed by the Traffic Commission to inform you that disability bays are for the use of all holders not specifically allocated for private use and that users need to share them.’.

Yes this IS exactly the issue. Who is to make sure that the bays are shared fairly, and not misused?

Perhaps this is not an issue in other areas, but it is where I live – on N**** H**** Road.

Yours Sincerely,

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Madrid para siempre.

The highlights of my Madrid trip were two things.

The first one was undoubtedly Edward Hopper(1882 – 1967)’s temporary exhibition at Thyssen-Bornemisza. I spent there 4 hours to feel and ponder through his paintings. Not every painting of his was on display but it was more than enough to enjoy and observe his painting interests and styles chronically. These two were my favourites at the exhibition. As you see there is a gap of 52 years between two. When he finished ‘Soir Bleu’, he had not yet defined his style and was getting inspirations from all prominent artists in Europe.  However, it shows he already had ambition and vision to express for the future works.

                                                                      Soir Bleu (1914)

                                                         Two Comedians (1966)  

And ‘Two Comedians’ made me think a lot about life. It was painted just a year before he died. He was believed to portrait himself and his wife Jo here. His lifelong admiration for theatre, where two comedians finished their show and were bowing to the audience. The show is over. Is life a comedy or a tragedy? For him it must have been a comedy and a funny show which he enjoyed a lot but knew it would come to an end. And he accepted it graciously. 

On another pleasant note, the ratatouille I had at the restaurant on the 5th floor of the museum was by far the best one I’ve had in my entire life. 🙂

The second one was a ballet-flameco show ‘Carmen‘.


What can I say? This has finally completed a missing jigsaw piece that I was looking for. The opera version I saw a while ago did not capture the passionate ‘gitana’ Carmen perfectly. Carmen sings and dances. Carmen expresses her feelings with the whole body movement. Without her flamenco, you cannot understand her 100%. Wow.

Now I feel so content and alive.
Confirmation: I need cultural/artistic blood transfusion on a regular basis.

Edward Hopper

I have been always attracted to female portraits which are painted in an interesting setting. I love the ones which show subtle expressions and emotions to the surroundings they are in. The painting ‘Girl with a Pearl Earring (Dutch: Het Meisje met de Parel) by Dutch Painter Johannes Vermeer was one of those. I think it was probably year 1999 or 2000 while I was visiting Paris. Luckily I was able to see Vermeer’s temporary exhibition in one of the great museums. Not knowing who the painter was and how famous he was, I was instantly drawn to his collection. I literally stared at some of his paintings for hours and the most striking piece was the aforementioned. The facial expression on the girl’s face was so deep and intense. 

Then some time later I first saw Hopper’s paintings at Tate Modern Gallery in London. Before I met his paintings, my preference was more on a piece basis. Hence it was an exciting discovery as Hopper’s main theme was exactly what I adored. I bought a large print of ‘New York Movie (1939)’ and a collection of his postcards. For the same favoritism, I also purchased a large print of Henri Mattisse’s ‘The Inattentive Reader (1919)’. These two paintings are still hanging on the wall in my study and I never get bored appreciating them.

The reason I like Hopper’s painting is that I totally ‘get’ it. Every single piece of them.
I can immerse myself in each painting and become the woman. Call me unsophisticated, but I’m being honest – I find it difficult to relate myself to some art movements (cubism, surrealism, you know what I mean) and to appreciate as much as I would like to.

I’m indescribably excited to go to the special exhibition on Edward Hopper in Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid. As seen on the home page, ‘The exhibition brings together the largest and most ambitious selection of works by the US artist ever to be shown in Europe, with loans from major museums and institutions including the MoMA and the Metropolitan Museum in New York, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover, and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia, in addition to various private collections and with a particularly generous loan from the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. The latter is sending 14 works from the Bequest of Josephine N. Hopper, the artist’s wife.’.

What can I say more? I feel so privileged.:-)

A life lesson

It was probably when I was 16 and a high school student.

We were busy copying what the teacher wrote on the blackboard and the classroom was very quite. Then suddenly, the teacher broke the silence and said ‘You know about the rice..’. Rice? The food? (Rice is the staple in Korea by the way.) I lifted my head and looked at him. He carried on where he paused. ‘Imagine if the rice is too sweet or savoury. You wouldn’t want to eat every day. Because it tastes bland and blends well with other dishes you can always eat and are never tired of it.’ That was it. He stopped and moved back to the textbook.

I just laughed. I was only 16 and I didn’t know what he really meant at that time. However, this has turned out to be the most enlightening lesson of life. Now I truly know what the message was after I’ve experienced many different – good and bad – things in life.

No matter what you eat, you need staple foods. You could eat a piece of chocolate cake or a grand lobster dish every now and then but these are not something you can live on. Staple gives you confidence and security. You don’t need to struggle to choose because you can have both. It’s not a matter of choice! You can eat rice with others. Or you can eat others one day but when you’re tired you can always go back to rice. You don’t need to/cannot  replace rice with something else (ok – rice, bread, potato, you know what I mean).

I could extend this even a bit further. Life is all about who you are and where you are from. As long as you are secure about yourself, you can achieve whatever you want in life. You will enjoy the experiences and learn to co-habit with those things that life has to offer. This vital lesson can apply to so many aspects of life. I’m still in awe to think about the teacher who casually said those words to us 16 year-old girls. He was a real philosopher. I cannot thank him enough.

Don’t forget the staple, it’s always there for you.

Smartphone addiction

It’s been more than a month since I posted a new post.

In my defence, my communication need has been met perfectly by other sources, that fact that I had a blog completely slipped my mind! 🙂

I had a two-week’s wonderful holiday at my house in Spain and threw loads of party. I practised my cooking skills and attempted new dishes with unfamiliar ingredients. Cooking and baking inspires me. I’m now seriously considering embarking on a culinary career when the time is right. 🙂 I already started checking some cooking schools in San Sebastian (FYI, this city is the top gourmet place in Spain). We will see.

Today, this headline from ABC.es has captured my attention. Oh dear, I’m one of them.

El 55% de españoles renunciaría a la tele o al coche antes que al smartphone  55% of Spaniards would give up TV or car for smartphone

I did try to put in some control measure to mitigate my addiction. Firstly, I’m not on 3G. My iphone only works (well, does ‘smarts’) on wifi. This helps me abstain from my iphone during working hours. Secondly, I ‘didn’t ‘ have internet connection at my house in Spain so that I had relaxing technology-free weekends. It’s a past tense for a reason. My good friend and neighbour Isabel and I had a little martini session some weekends ago and I casually mentioned that I made a trip to the communal rubbish collection area to upload some photos on my twitter because there was free wifi available around that area. It was meant to be a harmless and funny story without recourse, however Isabel was almost upset and asked me why I didn’t ask for the ‘clave‘ for her wifi. Naturally, oh right, ‘No se por que no pedi!’ tada – I ‘had to(!)’ gratefully accept it. lol

Now more and more restaurants and cafes offer free-wifi connection and I’m sure it will be a basic feature in any commercial premises in a very short space of time. I will not be able to escape unless I put myself on ultra strict abstention, which is quite unlikely.

Smartphone, if used well, is a fantastic little apparatus. I’m always in touch with my family back in Korea or what’s going on in the world. Let’s not forget the Olympics. I almost feel like I’m an Olympian in London!

However it takes up too much of my time. I think I can easily spend 3-4 hours staring at my iphone after I get back home. It’s a total time waster. I’m sometimes disgusted with myself to see that I continuously check email, twitter, facebook and other blogs and even go back at them again and again  like a stalker until my eyes are sore. My iphone totally controls me! Mind you, I was in heaven that I didn’t have access to wifi while I was holidaying in Spain. I read countless books and felt more time on my hand. Honestly nothing happened at all while I didn’t find out breaking news from the social network channels. Now knowing I’ve got the internet on my iphone, I won’t be able to go back to my same old self. My weekends will not be the same again.

Saying that checking if there is a free wifi connection available (and if there is, I feel… high!) is still the first thing I do when I’m sat at any restaurant. I hate the fact that I’m a slave to my iphone but I can’t help it! I’m totally obsessed.

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