Tag Archives: tradition

Another Year on Superbyq

Standard

I think it is just about time for me to make a little come back. I have to admit that I have let myself down by not keeping up with this blog. I want to say that it is not my fault, but really… whose fault is it then?

Sometimes I blame the situation I am in, and my mental state or well being. Sometimes I blame the stress of life, or just things that came up in my way — stopping me from writing. Sometimes I just excuse myself from not writing merely because I didn’t have any muse. But of course, the biggest names in literary world don’t have muse everyday, do they? But they write.

Just like one of my friends posted in her facebook page once: “Writer writes”.

I mean, isn’t that obvious?

If you want to make writing as your profession, isn’t it just obvious that you have to do it professionally? And by being professional, it means you don’t just skip writing and go to ALDI, on the hours you actually allocate for writing, or playing Tsumtsum the whole day while hoping for the muse to come to find you. No…

Obviously, I have to start doing this properly.

As usual, Superbyq’s birthdays always renew my writing spirit, much more than new years. This year Superbyq is 7 years old. It is frustrating to admit that I haven’t gone as far as I wish I have. Of course I have developed since then, and that I have achieved few things in life. However, I feel that it is not enough…

So, yeah… Like every year before, I am hopeful about this year. Hopefully I could write more, write better, and of probably make something out of it.

Right… enough for now.

Thank you for keeping up with me. I will see you again very very soon…

Prost!

Advertisements

An Update (Again)

Standard

Just came back from my annual visit to Indonesia. As usual, to celebrate the CNY.

This time, Chinese New Year feels different for me. In so many ways.

Not only that now I am no longer receiving angpao, and instead having to give kids ones, it was also… I don’t know. Ambivalent? I don’t know, I am not even sure how to put it. What I know is that in this trip home, so many things has changed. And, I realised that I have changed a lot too, since the last CNY.

img_2534

Mentally, mostly.

One little thing like… how I feel when I was surrounded by family, for example. It has changed too.

I used to like being left alone. I can blame it to my teenage angst, but now I can appreciate it more. I can appreciate being surrounded by cousins whom I haven’t met for at least five years, or nieces and nephews I haven’t never seen before. I can appreciate the attentions, as much as I could appreciate them leaving me alone in the past.

Or, the way I reacted to the problems in the family. I feel that I am no longer trying to fix stuff. It was, of course an effort not to treat my sisters and brother like children anymore. They are adults now, and the realisation has helped me to let them go, and be their own person. And they are their own persons, and I am proud of them.

It’s just…

Being the eldest in the family, there’s always this feeling of wanting to protect my sisters and brother. They probably don’t need my protection, not anymore. But it is always ingrained in me, the sisterly tough love to them. And, to be honest, this is probably the closest I could ever be to parenthood, so… IF they read this, I hope they understand if I was mummying them. (No, there’s a difference between mummying, and mummifying. Pay attention!)

Anyway. One thing doesn’t change though…

The FOOD.

As the closing of today’s post, I will present you: THE FOOD

img_2714 img_2725 img_2764 img_2787

A Year to Reflect?

Standard

The New Year has gotten me thinking.

It started after Mr. Fix-it’s holiday started few weeks ago, and we had so much time watching TV and doing virtually nothing. One of the show on the telly was this series “It was alright in…”. There were three of them — 1990, 1980, and 1970. Get it? So there were three episodes of them, each represents the decade, and what was acceptable in that decade which is no longer or slightly dubious nowadays.

Some celebrities, coming from different generations and age groups, were invited to make comments on what they saw on the screen — whether it was how news were presented, the comedy show, the unPC comments on talk shows, or even the (lack of) fashion sense. And, it was meant to be a light hearted, and was supposed to be in the comedy side.

I did found some of them quite funny, or even embarrassingly hilarious.  The ones from 1980s and 1990s that is. But when we were watching the one from 1970, things got slightly disturbing — even for me.

Things have changed, haven’t they?

It wasn’t as far as the Elizabethan time, Victorian time, or even the world wars time. It was only forty years ago, and look how far we have moved on. How much we have changed, as a society. And even it does make me excited, enthusiastic, and hopeful, it does make me feel scared too.

It made me think of myself, in thirty to forty years from now, where would this blog be? Would my ideas, and ideology still be relevant? Would I be in the right side of history?

I would like to think that I am doing the right thing, but I am sure that there were so many people in the 70s thinking that they were one of the most forward thinking and open minded people too. And they were not. What if in decades from now I would be the bigoted one?

You know what?

I think I should start this year by apologise in advance. For me and for people in the future. If this blog is still around by then, and if the world has changed so much and this blog has become offensive, and no longer relevant to the current sociopolitical correctness then — I apologise.

This blog is not perfect, but today, in this time period, I am trying to do what is right according to our sociopolitical situation today. If there are any wrongdoing, offence, etc. it wouldn’t be intentional. It is just what is acceptable today.

We have different questions, different priorities, and different cultural movements compared to the world in the 1970s. I believe things would be different too in 2050s or 2080s.

So, apart from apology, I would also use this blog to reflect, review, and retrospect, or even retract. Things have changed, and it will keep changing, and the only way I could be relevant is by knowing the changes.

That’s for today. See you again soon 🙂

Happy New Year 2017

Standard

Another year has passed. Although I couldn’t say that 2016 was a good year for me and (probably) the rest of humanity, I am still glad we have gone through it — alive.

Well, I am not going to talk about the past today, because I think new year is the best time to talk about the future. And for the very near future, a.k.a year of 2017, this is my resolutions:

  1. Since I managed to lose a bit of weight in 2016, why don’t I make it a promise to myself to be a better groomed person. I will take care of myself better — not necessarily full on make up everyday but.. hey, I am getting older. I don’t think it is a bad idea at all to take care of my physical appearance.
  2. I will read more. I will keep the target of 20 books I didn’t get to achieve last year. That was silly of me, but I think reading books would help keeping my brain sharp. I will have to spare more time to read.
  3. Blog entries? I will make it 200. I have at least two active blogs, and I managed to write 150+ blog posts this year, and… since blogging is the only way I could keep practising my writing skill, I should think of raising my game a bit. 200 blog entries in a year? I think that’s not too ambitious, is it?
  4. My German is getting better, and I was okay in trying to practise it everyday. BUT, it seems like I couldn’t be discipline when I am trying to learn other languages. Right now, I have Welsh, French, Hungarian, and Spanish on my list. I have to make up my mind and choose one instead of learning a little bit of everything. Let’s see how I can improve my language skill this year.
  5. Expanding my social circle. I find this the most difficult thing to do. My husband does have friends who are nice, and we get along alright… but unfortunately we have a complete different interests — in hobbies, political opinion, socio-cultural interests, etc. And, I can’t spend too much time with mums because somehow they would start talking about their kids, and it is sooo difficult to pretend that I care.

There… Wish me luck, and I wish you the best with your resolutions — if you do have one, and wish you a wonderful year ahead — even if you don’t have any. I will see you soon, and hopefully more regularly this time.

Prost!

The 2016 End of Year Recap

Standard

Golly! Is this that time of the year again? Time to recap the year and list of what I have achieved this year…

Okay. From the resolution, these are what I achieved:

  1. Mein Deutsch wurde besser. Ich kann manche sätze machen, obwohl es ziemlich lange dauert. Yes… It took a while to compose that sentence. In fact, it always takes a long time for me to make a sensible sentence. But it’s getting there. All I need to do is to get more learning sources so I could expand — as Duolingo is now a little bit predictable.
  2. I haven’t reached my book challenge, nor Nanowrimo. So both just didn’t work.
  3. I definitely reached the blog post goal, although it is not posted in this site.

Other thing that I have achieved:

  1. I have lost around 11kg since Chinese New Year. The reason why I didn’t lose too much after mid year assessment is because we went to Indonesia for a holiday, and since I have lost a lot the weight loss gets a little bit trickier.
  2. I get my visa extended, so it will be okay for the next three years. Wohoo!!
  3. I am doing well with handcrafting, and gardening — until I went to Indonesia again for my sister’s wedding in November and came back to the UK with a nervous breakdown.
  4. Mr. Fix-It and I travelled a bit, although it was our usual trip to Indonesia during Summer, and Wales for Christmas.

I really wish I could achieve more though… But I can’t complain too much… this year wasn’t a good one for me. Let’s just hope that next year would be much better than this — with less pressure from immigration, and new plan laid ahead, I think there would be some progress to be done next year.

But until then, let’s enjoy the last day of 2016.

See you next year 🙂

 

2016 — Not Looking Back In Anger

Standard

To be honest… 2016 was probably not the best year you want to remember, wasn’t it? I mean… really…

Just when you think that the death of Lemmy in the end of last year was the end of the count, you heard about David Bowie, and Alan Rickman within a week. And, when in the end of the month I told Mr. Fix-it that Terry Wogan was gone as well, he asked me to stop updating him with these distressing news.

But really… the big names were not the only ones going. The humanitarian issues from Syrian refugees, to the Rohingyas in Myanmar. The bombings both in the Middle East, and in Europe, and the terrorist attacks like those in Nice and in Berlin were just few of the examples. One that was much much closer to heart was the death of Jo Cox, obviously… The Labour MP who was murdered by someone who was and is still not worth mentioned or remembered. No… seriously, that ‘someone’ is so pathetic, that I refuse to mention his name in this blog — and after all that guy has already found guilty and I am glad with the decision.

When we mentioned Jo Cox, we would also remember Brexit, and when we talk about Brexit we also remember the 2016 US Presidential Election. Both were shocking for some people, and surprising for the others. I can mention some people who are still not able to move on from both events.

Oh yes…

2016 hasn’t finished with us really…

Both in the UK and in Indonesia, the rise of bigotry and intolerance increased with the rate I have never seen before. Seems like one side is fuelling the other with hatred… Same hatred, different side of the fence. It is getting both tiring and worrying, but not as worrying as MY own problem– my visa extension application.

It was done in the end, but… it was quite traumatic (if you want to know about the details, I would talk specifically about it later — but not now, because we are not talking about it now…), but gee… It is not as traumatic as finding a dead cat in our host’s house when we were visiting in laws in Wales for Christmas (yes… I know…).

So… there you go, 2016. It is almost the end of the year, and I do really hope that all those would make a good excuse for not posting for the last month. YES!!

All these effort to write an elaborate post just to excuse myself for slacking from writing. Apologies. I will try to do better next year…

Prost!

 

Letter To My Sister

Standard

As you might have known, I like writing letters to my sisters and brother, although I know they don’t really read my blog. I don’t mind. I don’t write for them, I write for myself. It might be good for them if they visit this place every now and then to see what I have in mind that I cannot tell them directly, but if they don’t… well.. their loss. Ha ha.

Anyway…

Dear my Baby Sis.

I call you Baby Sis because you are. I know you are an adult and you are dying to be treated like one by us — our parents, aunts and uncles, and Grandma, and especially your sisters. Tough shit, you are still our baby sister, and we won’t stop worrying about you no matter how old you are and you will be. Have you seen our aunts and grandma? Have you seen how they treated each other? Yes, we are the same, this kind of thing runs in blood.

So suck it up and listen.

I know you have a new life, and a long long life ahead. It is time to start planning properly. Start finding out what you really want, start finding out what makes you really happy. Your happiness is not attached to other things, or people, it is in you and your state of mind. I learned it the hardest way, and I realised the best moral lesson from Disney’s films (our favourite) is Ohana from Lilo and Stitch.

I know your name is not Lilo, and although for some people it’s close enough :p, you are a Lilo. You are MY Lilo. And you might want to watch the film again if you forget, but being a Nani, I won’t let anyone or anything to harm you, although it means you will cry and shout and hate me. The difference is, you are an adult, and in the end you will have to choose your own way.

Whatever way you choose, please choose the way of happiness.

There is no happiness in trying to please anyone. And, believe me… the way of happiness is easy. It is always easy. You don’t have to break in, or make a force entry. You won’t feel alone, or embarrassed, or uncomfortable. You will be the best of yourself, and you will feel a whole even though you are alone.

There is no happiness in trying to avoid confrontation, because sometimes it has to be fought. Peace can only be found in freedom, and freedom can only be found in truth. People who said that ignorance is a bliss are cowards who would rather hide in the dark than go out and see the reality.

I really wish you read this, and you understand. That experience has made me bitter and suspicious, but it does me good. It makes me aware of things that you and your other siblings don’t understand yet. Some knowledge that I wish I could transfer, so you could understand without having to experience yourself.

In the end, I wish you a good life.

Prost!

Heute Bin Ich Eine Tante Geworden…

Standard

Yes… and my German is getting better and better everyday, thanks to practising daily 😀 Oh, you’re can’t be bothered to copy and paste the title to google translator to know what it is about? Well… let me tell you what it means.

It means, “today, I have become an aunt”.

Yes my kind ladies and gentlemen, the lovely readers of Superbyq. Congratulate me because today, I am officially a proper aunt.

Of course I was an aunt before this. My cousins have got kids. And my husband has a nephew, but his nephew is not… you know… my direct nephew. And it is not the same because with my sister, I have been following her pregnancy process, and growing a sense of belonging to that baby. Aunthood is probably the closest I would ever get to parenthood.

Are you asking if I am not brooding? Nope. Still not.

I am still genuinely happy for my sister, and overjoyed with the new addition to our family. There is no question about it. However it doesn’t mean I would like to be the one contributing :0 Let’s not ruin today’s happiness with this “my womb my decision” rant, okay? Let’s just celebrate the day I officially become an aunt.

Ich bin außer mir vor Freude! Ich möchte mein Glas erheben, zu gratulieren meine Schwester und Schwager. Ich wünsche ihren Familie vielen Glück und gute Gesundheit.

Prost!!

Women And Hobbies

Standard

One of my friend posted this link from MGOTW on his facebook page. This is the link if you would like to click, and if you don’t this is the summary:

It is basically a discussion thread asking why WOMEN don’t have hobbies and lack of creativity. The question was asked by a man, and it was answered mostly by men who agreed with him. The thread was basically discuss how women (or specifically women that these guys have known in person) don’t (or if they do, it would be rarely) involved in any activities other than gossiping (which they usually call “hanging out with the girls”), or stuffing themselves with cake while watching TV, or nagging their other half because they want attention.

Hold on.

I didn’t say that it is 100 percent true.

Afterall, the discussion is in MGOTW, where most users there are likely to have an issue with women in general. If I was a Freudian, I would assume that their mums had tried to breastfed them with lemon concentrate when they were still an infant, making them so bitter about women. So, if you did click the link and were feeling slightly upset… please. It is MGOTW, take anything you read there with a pinch of salt.

But it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t think about what they’re saying though. There’s a reason why lots of people believe that women don’t have hobbies. Even women themselves agree to a degree that their peers seem to be lacking in this department.

Before I continue, I have to say that I have exclude the UK in general. I learned from my years being here, that this country is the “United Kingdom of Hobbyists”. It seems men, women, old, and young… everybody has a hobby. One at least. From stamp collecting, to trainspotting, from Magic The Gathering, to knit, and crocheting… you name it. They have it.

However if I see my friends in Indonesia — female friends, albeit I don’t have many. Ah, even my female family members. It seems that they don’t understand what a hobby is about.

Most of them love being online, looking at interesting stuff in video and repost and reshare, and tag people who actually have hobbies. “Bikin ini dong” (make me this, please). Or making a ridiculous comment about how my cooking and knitting hobby is what define me as a good housewife. Most of them don’t understand that people do stuff just for the sake of it.

People like being solitary, and being passionate about something. People do that to have fun. It doesn’t have to be the man-style hobbies like boxing, fishing, rock climbing. It doesn’t have to be too geeky like gaming, or train modelling. It is something that you do.

Most women I know don’t do this. Even my own mother thinks that hobby is a waste of time. She thought she gardens as a hobby, but to be honest, she just ask someone to do the garden while she enjoys looking at it. She doesn’t read, let alone write. She doesn’t cook, let alone experimenting with baking. But of course… My father is the same.

I don’t think it is all gender related. It is mostly cultural too. My grandfather is a big music buff, he wouldn’t spend a day away from our electric organ, he’s a greenfinger too — a proper one, you could see him on the garden tending our mango trees. My grandmother loves cooking, but she mostly do it as a part of daily chore. I am not sure if it is her hobby, or it is just something she should do because she likes feeding the family.

My sister loves tennis, like my grandfather. If she wasn’t pregnant she would have gone to the court at least twice a week. My other sister… she has a bunch of hobbies from crafting to mountain climbing. My brother on the other hand… I think he’s more like my father. He does game a bit, but I have never seen him with a particular hobby.

See? It is not a gender related thing. It is also cultural, and I believe economic factor plays a big role in it. My parents grew up when things were difficult, so it is impossible to develop a hobby because hobby takes money. I think human character plays a role too, because I found some people just don’t have this kind of passion some other has.

I think introvert people are more likely to develop a hobby because they have time for themselves. They will have time to consider things that they actually like doing, rather than doing things because their pals doing it too.

So…

What’s your hobby?

 

Is Life A Race?

Standard

Seems like I couldn’t shake it off my mind since I came back from Indonesia last month.

Like usual, big events in our family means hundreds of friends and relatives gathered to give you their free opinion — yes free, you don’t even need to ask for it. Aunties are the worst of the kinds, because they do have blood relations with you, and they are in a higher position than you are in the family tree. A lethal combo in our culture.

It was much better that I had my husband with me last time I went back to Indonesia. It means that whenever I started to grit my teeth listening to these unwanted opinions, I have my husband to give me a reason not to blow up. Still a Mr. Fix-It, he will fix the situation — unknowingly, since he doesn’t understand a word my aunts said.

Anyway, on their last day in Solo (it was a beautiful sunny day, and much better with seeing them leaving), they made a comment about my sister’s pregnancy.

Great Comic from The Oatmeal: http://theoatmeal.com/comics/kids

If you think that when your sister is pregnant, your extended family will leave you alone being child-free, then you are totally and utterly mistaken. In fact, they were even more savage and fierce in telling you that you need to have kids as soon as possible.

One sentence that I couldn’t get rid of my brain is:

“Kamu kapan? Tuh kebalap sama adek…”

Which I could freely translate that to:

“When will you [have a baby]? Your younger sister has overtaken you…”

Overtaken?

Is this a race?

Haven’t they ever play “The Game of Life“? Everybody knows that anyone who finish first lived the most boring life!

But seriously? Is life a race though?

Is it about who graduate the fastest? Or who gets married first? Or get a job first? Be a mum first? It is an idea that I couldn’t get around to. I mean is it okay to ask someone who said that my sister overtook me because she got pregnant first by asking:

“When will you be dead though? You don’t want your younger siblings to overtake you, do you?”

Prost!