daily gratitudes

– got a laugh because Bella put eyeliner on me some days back and I can’t tell if it’s still there or not.

– let go of nonsense temptation for Kinokuniya merchandise. Purchased The Weight of Our Sky ebook. I could have waited but I’m also happy to just have it.

– Spent time with AA, discussed her future plans. Had a lovely time at dinner together. I’m so grateful for such fine company on such short notice.

I tried doing a rundown of Cantonese cuisine. Hope I didn’t muck it up.

3yee described to AA the hak chong yu recipe she got from taxi driver uncle. Hak chong with turmeric leaves, turmeric powder, and onion and garlic. Ugh I miss that dish of hers so much. My favourite.

We had peach resin for dessert.

You know how white people do nose to tail dining like they invented it? We should also do root to resin, show them how Asians eat their plants. Or roots to shoots?

Had a fun nonsense photo shoot.

  • I want to wear that.
  • Of course you want to.
  • I actually already have a photo of myself wearing that.
  • Of course you do.

Came back just in time to yum seng the strangers getting married.

– WS and NN passed me more children’s books! So much generosity (I definitely caught a Konmari wave too).

– an uncle at the wedding dinner told me where to get really nice fish in Teluk Intan. AA dropped some Sekinchan tips, and showed me a really beautiful book she’s reading that I had eyed before.

– I’m good at plot twists! I guessed the future of TLP and got it right first try.

– J gave me some of her groceries, because I’ve bailed her out on other times. đŸĨ°

– Have started on a journey of making excellent spiced coffee. I can make a drink with decent layers, and it’s so easy it feels like cheating.

Now that I’ve zoomed out, I see today’s gratitude revolves around books, food, and the people (women) who make my life better.

My day somehow feels even richer as I look back, when I think of this. Huh. Didn’t think this would work so well and immediately. That’s why la, so sceptical for what? Not clever also.

2.5 mugs

Coffee spice mix notes

  • 2–3 star anise
  • 5 cinnamon sticks
  • 7-10 cardamom pods
  • 3-4 twists from black pepper shaker
  • Some cloves (5–8?)
  • 2 inch skinny dried ginger

Next round:

Boil spices first, add coffee, simmer. Reduce amount of spices but maintain overload of cinnamon.

Way too much spices. 1 inch ginger. 2 star anise. Bitterness subsides with heat. 10 mins for spices, 1 for coffee.

Learn to balance rest first, then cinnamon, then eventually work in white pepper.

For tea:

Boil the milk too, and for longer. Less water. Less ginger.

Games

CT came over to play with the NES sim. I found some games I had forgotten existed!

Karateka. Contra. Tennis. Bicycle racing. Played Ice Climbers together 🤗

Mahjong 💕. Lost again 😔. I want to play an all-day mahjong game.

Broke in my set, figuring out the layout for the table was easier than I thought. This house doesn’t have much space but with some jiggling, it is adequate.

Grey was all over J for butt pats. Found ashtrays in the table. My table is slippery smooth.

Played more chordaidee after CT left.

I’d been asking J to teach me her 2P chordaidee, but the moment she started dealing the cards, I recognised it. A forgotten memory that snapped back into sight, whole.

My new bag cards are officially broken in, along with house mahjong. Good, satisfy. Feeling Cina.

J was surprised I have spare towel and kain pelikat at home and that’s just…🤔

I should stop noticing her height. Bugs her.

Grey tried to prison break the entire time and when I scolded her, she scolded me back. No repentance at all.

Salted egg cornflakes, unadorned kueh kapit, roasted sweet potatoes. Technically, that makes this a potluck.

J said I should do food blog, but I don’t think I’d be good. It’d be so much work to just describe how one noodle is different from another.

I guess I could write non-format about food.

Between the NES games and the card games that I didn’t even know I had forgotten, until I remembered them, I’m worried about my brain’s future. It can’t possibly be getting better 😒

Reza came and mumbled something and I just made some agreeable hrming nodding gestures and he left. Then he came back much later.

He had been waiting in his car for me to move mine so he could get out đŸ¤ĻđŸģ‍♂ī¸đŸ¤ĻđŸģ‍♂ī¸đŸ¤ĻđŸģ‍♂ī¸đŸ¤ĻđŸģ‍♂ī¸đŸ¤ĻđŸģ‍♂ī¸đŸ¤ĻđŸģ‍♂ī¸đŸ¤ĻđŸģ‍♂ī¸

daily gratitudes

– A decent attempt at a new and very spicy chai, my first since going sugar-free. Added black pepper, and switched out fresh for dried ginger, Darjeeling for Sabah tea. I don’t know if I’ll sleep tonight.

– set up the new oven; roasting a chicken and potatoes tonight. Might even make a gravy! And a fresh salad with lemon infused oil and cherry + aged balsamico

– I beat a sniffly nose all on my own! The dry cough is next. My immunity so rarely overcomes.

– Mahjong night with J and CT 💕

– Cleaned out the whole yard and kitchen today. Spent an hour just sweeping up leaves. Tidied up the living room a bit, moved furniture around to create more space. It better reflects how it is used now.

Cleaned the cat area as well. I was so satisfied when I looked at the yard that was once blanketed in leaves, and all I saw was surface.

– paying better attention to how I spend my time.

– Watched Umbrella Academy and Sex Education, both were solid entertainment.

I had been feeling disconnected from my own space lately. It was getting difficult to leave the house and when I did, some of the gratitude was the escape from my own home. It is not how I want to feel about my home.

My room got upturned when I prepared for the hospital and it never really recovered. I had been neglecting the house and my health.

Now I feel good about turning my health around, and inviting good energy into the house.

Maybe I should burn some incense.

This is my first time doing gratitude journaling, and it was helpful. Prompt came from the 2019 calendar by Dhiyanah.

Managed to drag myself out to the chiropractor for my sprained wrist and finger — I saw no immediate improvement this time.

I was hoping a quick tug of my finger would set it. Still, it’s been a few hours and my finger is more mobile. I dare not test my wrist.

Eric says it’s my neck causing it — this is the first time he’s ever told me a cause. Our sessions are usually terse.My posture has been worse lately.

Met Yas for dinner. We managed to leave our comfort zone of hot pot, for a Korean restaurant immediately next door.

The bill came up higher than I anticipated, so I’ll be eating at home more for a while. Still, I am happy.

Sweet potato roasted on charcoal was the piece de resistance. Starchy, sweet, thick — purple skin blackened on the coals and roughly split open to reveal a gorgeous, vibrant yellow of jagged and sticky potato filling.

  • It’s beautiful. Like we are going to place jewels on it.
  • Or a stick of butter.

We agreed butter and jewels are comparable, although I may be more partial to the former. Even as the burnt skin cracked onto my fingers I tried to scrape the rest of the yellow flesh out.

Told Yas I flung a lighter at a car earlier today and couldn’t blame my period. I am quite aggro today, not sure why. That said, this car pushed me out of my lane, didn’t signal, and became more aggressive when I honked.

In my heart, the lighter I threw enters the grill and bursts into flames.

Yas told me to make sure my aim is true next time. Well, I made up for the half-assed throw with some old fashioned middle finger flipping, so there’s that.

Hell is other people.

Got a “wtf?” because I’ve only recently discovered Gillian Anderson’s immense sex appeal.

I love being a lesbian, but I’m kinda not talented at all the actual lesbian stuff involving being attracted to women.

Did groceries. Was so inspired by the sweet potato, I’m picking up a few to roast in the oven. Don’t think I’ll get the same effect, and I’m not good at picking out tubers. Still, purple skinned is a good start.

I’m finally going to roast a chicken here. It’s taken me so long. It’s usually how I break into a house for the first time, how I welcome myself into my new home. Ever since Lols taught me this when I was trying to find my place in Melbourne. I never really did, but a good roast chicken does have the comfort of home.

Tomorrow is the time.

Went to nursing home. Introduced mum to her new splint, which she approves of.

She tried to talk to me about her Midsomer show and how blah blah blah this season but I am so sick and tired of how much she whined for the thumbdrive containing the series, to the point she rejected the Netflix and TV when I purchased it. I didn’t even want to look at the screen.

The home remedies I’ve been advised to give to mum come with the side suggestion that we are choosing her paraplegia. A miracle cure is just some turmeric powder and fruit enzymes away. Sometimes it’s a sales pitch. Others, good intentions steeped in ignorance.

I don’t have the strength to explain we have tried the turmeric and the fruit enzymes, the breast milks and strange powders, various anti-inflammatory spices and all sorts of health foods in the entire spectrum of cooling or heaty humours.

What we need is for spinal cord nerves to regenerate and heal.

Going to meditate and read tonight. Good plan 👍

Oh god, I make one irritated remark and some guy is seriously explaining to me the qualifications required for titles in Malaysia FFS

I am feeling very nakal tonight

Pets says it’s because of the full moon. Or I’m a werewolf.

Chap Goh Mei

What a good day so far.

Went to sip tai sui at the Guan Di temple. I was awkward because the rituals, language and atmosphere are near alien to me. My channels were closed so tight a breath of air wouldn’t have made it through, but hopefully a prayer did.

In the span of 15 minutes, there were two lion dances. How indulgent.

I wrote my Chinese name for aunty and she asked me for my Chinese calendar birthday. I don’t even remember what Chinese year it is now, much less when I was born.

I didn’t understand or hear most of what the sifu did on my behalf. The little I did catch made me realise my Cantonese is too basic anyway.

Messed up some of the parts, I hope these rituals are forgiving.

Went to the optician shop with CT and was offered a free cleaning service for my glasses. Not sure why they did, but yay, my glasses are so sparkly clean even my vision feels sharper 🎉.

Visited the spice shop i had been meaning to go to for years, but either my memories are inaccurate or it wasn’t the one I intended. Argh I hope I make a good masala chai.

CT brought me to eat XLB at Din Tai Fung, before cooking dinner for me tonight. Snacking on homemade prawn crackers. He also gave me a bar of neem soap to try. Happiness.

Visited a cardboard factory, and a cardboard tube factory. Some of the machinery were from England.

Moorthy suddenly gave me a free art tube! He kept calling me a lady and insisted I have a chair to sit on.

I’ll be able to store my A3 posters properly 🤗

đŸĨ°đŸĨ° Got mobbed by a pack of puppies đŸĨ°đŸĨ°

Two cups. Justice. The Sun.

My tongue is swollen. A bump burst and now there’s blood.

Eh fuck off lah.

Finally decided to give Dear White People a try and holy fuck, she is so pretty.

So nice to be back home. Full of friends. Went to my usual cafe for dinner and bumped into CT and S. They brought their mum. I was antisocial and took another table — wanted to finish a chapter of the Arundhati Roy book I’m slowly plodding through.

Woke up slow the next day. Went to J’s CNY open house party. I got there early while her family was rayaing.

JA was there too. It felt weird, work circles colliding with social. Then I saw the papers and realised it was a work meeting. I ejek JA because her womance left on a jet plane recently.

Whenever I see JA, I shake a fist in solidarity with her because I assume she endures so much for our sakes. J had forgotten our past, and I had forgotten they work together. Not sure I’d win in a blurness contest against J, and that’s saying something.

J’s mum cooked up a storm; I liked the chicken curry and petai. Thi was happy to see so many vegan options. She called it a buffet 😂. Would have been brilliant to hang out, but she had to show face kat a fundraiser. I was supposed to go for it as well (100% lupa), but no one expects my face.

A wonderful open jamming karaoke night. Sharm knows so many songs. Susanna brought some shakey music instruments that looked like we were going to summon stuff.

Laughed my ass off at Snowy’s international outings. Laughed some more at the singer-songwhisperer. I always see her over numbers and percentages and seriousness, I had no idea she’s so so so much crack. No one’s made me laugh so hard in a long time. Or grossed me out as much. Rolled many ciggies for her.

I requested Lisa Loeb because I forget that Stay is quite susah to sing. J’s rap persona is Binary 😂. 👏đŸģ👏đŸģ

Met my aunt properly — she is so incredibly awkward and antsy. Her head looks like it’s constantly churning gears. I meant to tell her she is cool but it came out as cute and that’s just layers of đŸ¤ĻđŸģ‍♂ī¸ haiyoh. She plays bass like she’s sitting for an exam. We never did bump into each other at family gatherings, although apparently we were at the massive Sunway one.

Met someone who is starting her own healing farm. The Filipino girl who joined our party was immediately expected to sing 😄. She said she was so-so only, no one believed her (result: a beautiful voice). Cringed at the amount of double jointed displays going around the table. Why ☚ī¸

The night ended so late and so warm. I slept slow. Woke up slow again, but J woke up so much slower, I missed an art talk I wanted to attend.

I rummaged through her fridge for leftovers to make lunch. Helped her clean up instead — it’s fun to clean with J, she has an awesome little speaker so we can sing along. I was very taken with her Scrabble cup, which amused her so much she said she’d get me one next time. Left with a book, salads, tempeh, and a new toothbrush, because I didn’t want to share hers 😒.

Now that I think about it, I could have just used hers and not been such a brat, but I’m so conditioned against it thanks to close encounters with Daph and Sa in their dark years with hygiene. Takpelah at least no need to buy new toothbrush (yay!). I’ve been forgetting for a month.

I entered my zen mode and forgot the world existed, including J, when she was right next to me. I made some of my happy sounds and realised with a start she was there. Killed my self laughing JFC.

Came home, showered. Bella belanja dinner at her favourite spot. She put on eyeliner for me — I can’t tell the difference. I also don’t have makeup remover. 😟. She likes my new tote bag, which is so colourful because J is determined to add colours to my wardrobe.

Alfred came to join us over coffee. Was supposed to return to J at midnight to gamble, but plans fell apart. Now I’m back home, on my bed, jotting notes before I read The Magicians.

My little finger is so sprained, it’s swollen đŸ˜ĸ

Eyeing my communications with my mother. I have so many chips of my shoulder with her name on them. I need to work on it.

Two houses. Liy has tenancy in the back wooden house, but she’s converted her own room in my building instead. She’s done a great job, I was just showing an (interior design?) interested friend our place. The view pans: it’s white walls, plenty of little details in blue, looks a bit Sri Lankan in design. It’s a big house. A well in it goes deep.

I’ve accidentally peed on the floor in my room. I send my friend out immediately. Fortunately she goes, amiable, in the direction I pointed, without realising. I change my clothes. Old wooden floorboards. An airwell in the centre. I fancy this friend.

There is a building between my side and liy’s. My excitement builds when I realise we could do something cool with this. Maybe build a second home. Maybe do a fancy Airbnb.

Forgotten huge chunk before because Rolly.

I am renting from a friend, (?). I love the space at first sight. It is the back portion of her room. It’s basically a cave basement, the colour of red clay.

Bookshelves. Outside, immediately an open plan kitchen, many bookshelves, big comfortable couches that we can sink into. I think perfect would be when her relatives clear out the two proper bedrooms whose doors are by the staircase going up. (?) can move into one room, I can get another friend to move in to the other room, I can take the cave room.

The makciks want to know my thoughts on Antigone. It’s a rare play for them. Barely anyone has staged it, they want to do an amateur production but they are getting the ambitions of professional quality as they talk.

It almost feels like dramaturgy work. I offer to bring a friend, Dawn, who has played Antigone to come talk to them. The auntie’s eyes widen. She’s keen. I hope Dawn agrees.

I crush an egg shell and head up the stairs. A big brown dining table with 4-6 chairs around it in the corner. I check the ceiling — a fan. Good. I can hang with friends there. Outside it may be TTDI or PJ’s swimming pool venue. There are people around. So central, I love it. Big public pool. I look for plants to put the eggshells in but I don’t want ppl to think I’m a weirdo. I find a cluster of small herbs behind some people, drop the egg shells, dust off my hands.