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Merdeka Baru

Our phones were right next to us the whole time.  In between mouthfuls of rice, our fingers reached towards the screens, tapping a couple of times to refresh the outdated page (note: by 20 seconds). The numbers rose where we hoped it would, and our hearts made a little leap.  20 seconds more, and the other end was catching up.  Our skepticism resurfaced, but we were hopeful all the same. ...

Be Still

I was doing some work at the dining table back in my Penang home on the day of the general elections, and I was observing my parents entertaining Zachary with my old Lego bricks, where my dad was earnestly trying to figure out how to build a lion for his grandson.  Lucky for Zachary, his grandpa has very good spatial and shape recognition skills and can sculpt almost anything on paper (he used to...

‘X’ Marks the Spot

I have given this one a lot of thought.  I have so much to say that sometimes my own thoughts contradict one another.  But before I continue, I want to emphasize that I am not telling readers who to vote for.  I am simply saying, if you want change – your vote counts. I have spoken to many about this, people from various backgrounds, ideologies, and intellectual capacities.  From the simple...

Homecoming

I’m usually a lot more prepared for these things.  Ever since I’ve begun living away from home, I would buy flight tickets well in advance for Chinese New Year so I don’t get suckered into paying three times more than I should.  But this year, it has slipped my mind completely, and by the time I planned my trip back everything was either sold out or way overpriced. Consoling myself that I now own...

Send My Love

May 2017, London It was 2AM in the morning, and I was woken by the loud “Ding!” on my phone – I had forgotten to keep it silent before I went to bed.  I squinted as my eyes adjusted to the piercing brightness of the screen, and somewhere in between being in the state of unconscious and conscious (mostly the first), my heart took a little leap when I saw who the Facebook message...

Little Things, Big Heart

Some things don’t change. Six years ago, yours truly, a wide-eyed fresh graduate reported for duty at a research facility in a rather secluded town, not knowing what to expect from this new journey into the rat race.  I drove a modest local-made car, the kind almost every young working person my age would – somewhat semi-hoping to blend into the mundaneness of adulthood.  My car...

Seven

I. I start my walk from the Seaford Railway Station, and Google tells me to take what seems to be a more straightforward route than the trail that I have loaded on my watch the night before.  My feet takes me to a busy highway, and I trod along the unkempt, very much less-taken side path filled with stinging nettles that decide to make their presence felt from the beginning of my walk.  Ouch...

Live Now, Live Forever

It was one of those mornings where I woke up ‘leaping’ from bed because it was going to be an exciting day. After seven gruelling exam papers, I was ready to take on life again. I might have done really badly in one of my papers, or failed it even, but I wasn’t going to worry about it now.  The day started with a video call with my mom, then I managed to squeeze in a morning...

Stars

“Look again at that dot. That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer...

Veiny Hands

“You’ve got veiny hands,” my flatmate commented as her finger prodded onto the slightly bulging green pipelines that run across the back of my palms. “Mm? I do? Oh yeah, I guess I do now. I’ve never had them before,” I shrugged. “Do you do a lot of hard work with your hands?” My flatmate’s a doctor-to-be, so analysing people’s anatomy is one of her favourite past times. I thought about it for a...

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