The other day somebody asked what my favourite word is. I answered in slight surprise, “Halcyon”. I didn’t know tat that was my favourite word, out of myriad words in the English language (my goodness, I love the English language). The person I was talking to was more surprised – they didn’t know what the word meant, so I explained that it kind of had to do with golden days, hay days, that summery feeling.

In short, it was a very hazy explanation and it didn’t help much. So now I go to a few different sites to get a better definition.

Okay, urban dictionary isn’t so useful: “sleep pill, makes u pass out in about 30 seconds”. Let’s try something more academic.

The English Oxford Dictionary says that halcyon refers to

“Calm, quiet, peaceful, undisturbed” days

To me, though, it still has connotations of golden days – those days of summer. Picnics make a brief appearance in there somewhere, which means family and friends. It might not be a day that you particularly remember, but it is a definite concept that makes me smile.

Can I ask anyone who happens to ready this to give me an opinion, or a story? What is your favourite word? Does it conjure up strong images, or a smell, or a taste in your mouth that differs from the plain denotation of the word as per the dictionary? Does it possess a certain magic for you?


Say hello to your friends!

Image result for baby sitters club logo

As a uni student, I have been reading a lot of educative articles about global justice theories, global economic theories, global political theories, global political/economic theories. It’s thrilling.

But, espit my love all all the high-falutin’ language and a relish for vague concepts, I decided that I needed to dumb it down a little. So, I looked for a free online copy of any book from the Baby-Sitters Club series by Ann M Martin.

I don’t mean to degrade the books – but, they are books about 12 year old girls for 12 year old girls. While some childhood favourites like Anne of Green Gables will stay with me forever to be re-read again and again, the BSC just isn’t quite the same.

Nevertheless, the four or five chapters that the Internet gave me access to gave me a good lesson: community. Everything is (almost eerily) very neighbourhood-y. Despite the lack of nuclear families (there are several ‘broken families’ through divorce, and the sad occurrence of deceased parents), the girls are all so friendly with their neighbours. Although they all have their problems, they recognise the importance of friends and family. As the theme song says:

You can always count on me
And I can count on you
Good times, bad times in between
My friends will see me through
We’ll be sharing wonderful times every day
All together singing our song,
Growing in every way!

I still need a bit of simplicity though, so the next book on my list is one from the Luxe series. I never said I’ll stick to the best of the classics.

2016 according to the stars

I don’t really believe in horoscopes. So I tell myself: they tell me that I, as a Leo, am arrogant and self-centred.

Maybe I am a little. I have pride, I know that, and I’m territorial over things like family. Sometimes I see parallels between my horoscope and real life. I am a practising Christian, but I like to think that God does not control my destiny and that the stars guide me. Sure, they are not omnipotent concerning my “fate”, or anybody else’s – but, hey, if Jupiter is in my zone that must mean something… right?

I also have an under-the-covers fantasy for trying the…. positions best for Leos. But that is not for wordpress to know.

What I would like wordpress to know, and me to confirm, is that 2016 is apparently a year of dynamic movement and reaching ambitions. Apparently I can reach new heights and stretch myself and even see my name in lights. Apparently.


I assume that I wrote this at the beginning of this year. Twenty sixteen. 2k16. Two thousand and sixteen. However you want to say t, it is still a trip around the Sun: and there’s no way to stop it, no there’s no way to stop it, if the Earth wants to roll around the Sun!

Now, away from the song lyrics and back to talking about horoscopes and whatnot. Apparently, whatever I was reading said that this was a year of ambitions. And I have a new one: I realised that whenever I tell people about my university course, I want to mention most that I minor in linguistics, even though I am acutely irritated by the fact that it’s only a minor. Therefore, I am trying to extend my course to do a major; then, I will either do honours in linguistics or move to another university to do a course to become a speech pathologist.

Ta-da! A decision of which I am proud and quite excited. I went to a speech therapist when I was young and I can not imagine how I would be different if I still pronounced “thirteen” as “fourteen” because of my speech impediments. But it’s not only to save people from their own embarrassment… or should I say vanity? People who have been injured or suffer illness need this type of help as well, and I feel as though this is an area in which I can make a difference.

This Earth of Mankind, a book review

This Earth of Mankind is a book I found while wandering through the rather small but diverse collection of books at university in Malaysia.

I’m not from Malaysia. When people here ask me where I’m from, the answer if usually “Melbourne”. That’s not strictly true: I’m from a small town north of Melbourne that nobody has heard of except for those lucky enough to live there or to have visited.

So, I saw four books with colourful covers and though “Aha! Four books in a series, this s good – I’ll have something to read.” I took the first of the quartet of the shelf and, although I haven’t finished it yet, I need to write about it.


This Earth of Mankind cover – it’s very beautiful and has a lot going on in it with great vividness.

The main character is a young native of Java. As a native, he is of the lowest class in colonial Java, Indonesia. But, as a well-educated, clever young man, Minke is allowed, but only tentatively, to join the Dutch an other European “pure-blood” people.

Now, I need to make it clear that I have no judgement on colonisation. I’m Australian for goodness’ sake, without a drop of Aboriginl blood in me. I just find it so sad and unjust that a native was a native, the enslaved, the oppressed – but their blood is “pure” – if you want to talk in those terms. It isn’t “mixed”. The Europeans were “pure” because they had no blood of the coloured people in them.

It takes Minke a lot of trouble to face this conundrum. He admires the Europeans for their knowledge and inventiveness and sometimes looks on the Javanese as backward and slow. Right now he is in trouble – not because of his colour or ancestry, but because some stupid teenage boy has a huge grudge against him, and other factors.

I haven’t finished the book yet but I plan to find out what happens to Minke and the beautiful daughter of a brave prostitute and mad father he is in love with… but that’s for another time.

Once again and 7 little Aussies

Once again, I am drunk and alone. It’s a fantastic writing stimulant.

I have been reading the Seven Little Australians series and I find it quite bizarre: their plights of poorness, badly-bahaved children, an unloving father, etc. make for a book that could be utterly depressing. Yet it is a cheerful book full of joy and laughter: I guess it’s the Aussie pioneering spirit.

Anyway, I feel (once again) that I am waiting for something in my life. Love, I guess. My three older sisters are either married or in very (and I mean very) serious relationships. I, meanwhile, got to partner my sister’s husband’s gay middle-aged friend for a partner at my sister’s wedding, while my other two sisters were coupled with their boyfriends. I want that love in my life and sometimes, sometimes I feel like Nell from SLA. She is “blinded” by false love and I think that maybe I am. This is quite the conundrum.

Anyone else just want to feel a little more worthwhile?

Mems for lyfe

A mushy title like “My first three memories” or simply “Memories” is simply not me. Instead I decided to embrace internet language – but, like, I’m using it ironically. Which is an odd contrast to what I wanted to write about today: a few days ag, I remembered a dormant memory from back in my very early childhood. They are foggy memories – I can recall clearly only very fragmented parts but it helps as I write them down.

Mem #1: The horse.

When I was about 4 or 5 years old, I was at my uncle’s farm with my three older and much more able-bodied sisters and one of my cousins. The latter had showed us all of her pets – she had quite a few, from hermit crabs to horses and everything in between. Lambs and ferrets, dogs and cats – and I’ve probably forgotten a few in there.

She had let my three older sisters ride the horse and then, it was my turn. This is the part that is really lodged in my brain: the feeling of looking up at a gigantic horse and thinking something along the lines of “How am I gonna get up there?” It was huge. Sooo high and a beautiful glossy chestnut, a gentle horse… but still, huge.

My cousin said doubtfully, “”Maybe you could ride Blackberry.” Blackberry was the pony – a lovely thing that was a much more acceptable height, ho was a delight to ride around in a circle while my cousin tightly held the reins to guide us both. Despite my misgiving about riding the horse, there is still the nagging feeling of annoyance about that day. I wanted to ride the horse. Yes, I was too small to do it, but my sisters had done so and I wanted to too.


Mem #2: The house.

I was three years old when my parents decided to move the six-person family from our tiny,one-bathroom, three-bedroom house to a house that would actually fit us all in comfortably.

At the time, I did not fully grasp the concept. Even from such a young age I have been a creature of habit. Like Jo March, change is not my favourite thing. However, I have had to grow less advers to it and, even though I might not always like it, I do not resist change.

I asked Mum, “Why do we have to move”. She replied, very reasonably, “Because the house is too small for us.” With wisdom, I said “But Dad doesn’t even reach the roof.”

Mem #3: Kinder.

I remember very little from kindergarten, but my most vivid memory is from a bright, sunny day on the bark chips below the playground, when I was about to climb onto the ladder.

“You’re not allowed” said one of my colleagues. A male.

“Why not?”

“‘Coz it’s a pirate ship. Only boys.” Stuck-up fool he was.

“Girls can be pirates too.” I’m not even sure if I did get on – never one for physical violence or a test of strength, my only option would be to fight against this patriarchal regime verbally.

This three memories all have one thing in common: I argue. Dispute. To some level, I stick up for myself – and, if needs be, for others. However, I see myself now as very different to this and I’m not sure if I like it. Recently, somebody broke into my car and stole some CDs and my GPS. When I discovered this, I didn’t run around the house, or ring up the police immediately, or use up angry energy on my sister’s boxing gloves. No, I sat down and went on with lunch.

Calmness is a good thing. But I should have been angry or annoyed – instead, I have no energy. I want something in my life to give ma bit more passion and motive. Right now, I don’t know where I am going.


I seem to have stayed away from WordPress since “Drunk and Alone”. No surprises there.

As a uni student I spend all of my time reading articles of global political and financial news, educated dissertations on the fall and rise of oil. If ever I need to watch something, it will only ever be a historical documentary to give a valuable reflection on … na, I couldn’t think of anything.

Actually I’ve already finished one TV series this year; I’m in the middle of reading Harry Potter and I’m currently watching the Lizzie Bennet Diaries. It was a toss up between the latter and the more true-to-the-book 1995 TV miniseries.


I feel as though there is a little bit of a trend here – everything is romantic. The TV series was How I Met Your Mother – I travelled years and years with Ted Mosby, sometimes shedding a tear or two, while he searched for the love of his life. Harry Potter has a bit of romance in it – he is on a long-spanned journey to save the wizarding race and avenge his parents’ death. Boom. Romance. Pride and Prejudice – what is more romantic than Jane Austen, even if video blog form?

The point is – romance. I haven’t really seen any romance first-hand. I spent part of the morning comforting my friend over her boyfriend issues….I have no experience, but isn’t that always the way?

The pangs of jealousy will sometimes shine through the cracks in my rambles. But the main point is that I am happy waiting. Sure, I have someone to help me wait. But I’m happy waiting. Reading my books and movies with a good dollop of romance.. and a dollop of icecream.