Thursday, 26 February 2009

Oh WOW - off off off off off!!

In March, maybe I can finally go and fetch my brain and heart back from the wind. I think I've been so tired that I've lost my bearings and passion. It's been just nonstop counting down the days until the next day off for a long time. March will be search-and-rescue-Me month.

Today was a good preview. I came back from Mom and Dad's in Danshui this morning, did laundry, cleaned, put on my yukata (it's warm in Taipei now), taught myself how to tie a new knot - 貝の口, went to the stationery store around the corner parading in my yukata, then to the orchid shop around the other corner, came home and tended to my flowers on the balcony. I stopped by the TEX x BQ event in the evening for about 20 minutes, then shuffled home in my geta (casual Japanese slippers). What I figured out today is realize that I'm lost and that I need to start finding my way back.

Saturday, 21 February 2009

A sign?

Woodblock printing, karate, kimono...are the things that have constantly been on my mind lately. What does this mean? Am I going to Japan? I certainly do have plenty of time in March to practice all three, since I'm finally getting some days off.

I need a sign.

Friday, 20 February 2009

Eat Pray Love

I've turned into something of a bookworm lately, and Eat Pray Love is one of the books I've ever enjoyed. Ever. For me, it was hilarious, authentic and spiritual. I highly recommend it.

And the speech by its author, Elizabeth Gilbert, on nurturing creativity, is a must-watch for anybody whose work or life depends on creativity.

Please, buy this book and watch the speech. You'd be helping yourself, encouraging the author/speaker and doing good for the world.

(Yes, I know, the book was first published in 2006 and I'm way behind. But I read it, even if it did take me a long time to feel the mold growing in my mind and to realize that I should start reading more than just the four Chinese newspapers a day for work.)

Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Ouch ouch ouch!

Pulled my right trapezius muscle when I woke up this morning. Paaaaaaain. Can barely move.

Quickly went to the pharmacy and bought ibuprofen, acetaminophen, some kind of muscle relaxant and saronpasu sticky pads.

Now at work, totally drugged out. Ahhh.... Better than pain though. MUCH better than pain.

Going to start training karate by myself after this night shift is over. Must get better before next week.

Tuesday, 17 February 2009

Feeling good

I'm feeling things again.

I feel full of sunshine, despite not seeing much of it these days, working at night.

I feel like something good's about to happen.

I feel like I'm about to shed a big, thick layer of dead cells and emerge fresh and pretty.

I feel good. I don't know why.

Valentine's Day


From Mom and Dad. They're so sweet!

Friday, 13 February 2009

New year's dinners in Tokyo

From earlier this year. Reminiscing. Why so sentimental now? Just found out my 9-day shift turned into to a 12-day marathon, with tomorrow a 22-hour day. I better dig out those coffee coupons in the drawer...

Chinese-style お節料理 (fancy Japanese new year's food)
Kind of like a super luxurious lunch box that we eat morning, noon and night over the course of three days, starting from new year's eve. Because it won't fit in the refrigerator, we put it in the "natural icebox." That's our secret language for "the rack next to the flowers in the freezing cold veranda."

かまぼこ (fish paste cake) and 数の子 (herring eggs) that Mama marinated

Auntie Yuko trying to save the rice cakes that A-chan burnt

Burnt, but tasty :D

桜えび (cherry blossom shrimp) flavor

A-chan's super yummy soba

Lovely Oneesan. It's a mystery to me how she can eat so much and still be so thin. I miss her.

Thursday, 12 February 2009


I've been going at it for 15 hours now and still can't get the color and shades right. The gradation still doesn't seem right either.

Aigh. If you stand really, really far away, they look OK.

I will continue practicing next next week, after my 9 day shift which starts tomorrow.

Wednesday, 11 February 2009


(private blog entry)

Tulips at the office

White tulips, while they don't have as much spunk as some of the colored ones, are quite elegant and give (a little bit of) tranquility to a space with enough charged energy to blow up 5 floors of the building. In the news room right before deadlines (12h00, 18h00 and 22h00) people are shouting like "要死了!林老師勒!這是什麼鬼?先去做先去做!" (roughly translated, "Crap! Jesus Christ! What the hell is this? Go go go, get it done and we'll worry about the rest later!") Well, it's not really "people" shouting that, it's one person - the chief editor. I like her a lot, but not when she's freaking out (which these days is about 95% of the time).

Back to tulips. After the full bloom and right before the petals start falling, I think the flowers look like bowls, and if anyone knows where they sell bowls like this, I'd like to buy some!

One other new thing I have my desk is this pink little guy that tilts its head back and forth, right to left. It was a gift too much fun to give away. I put it on Solon's stack of folders and papers that marks the divider between my workstation and his. But because it faced my way, I realized all he saw was the back of the thing's head, which is probably annoying, so I drew a face on a post-it note and stuck it on the back. Heh heh. Too bad that magnet which looks like me is too heavy. I tried sticking that on, but the head wouldn't move anymore.

Sunday, 8 February 2009

My new CNY tradition

Around here over CNY, people buy and display cat's tail willow (銀柳/雪柳) branches in their home, ornamented with plastic gold nuggets and coins, tied to the plant using red nylon strings. Perhaps this is the Taiwanese answer to the Christmas tree. I did what the Romans do, and I bought a bunch too, sans the cheesy and cheap plastic gold and nylon. It's in the culture here to wish people and themselves fortune, and I'm just not into it. I'd rather concentrate my good wishes on health and happiness. Anyway, I did a twist on the traditional decoration, and instead of peeling all the red shells off all the fuzzy white puffs, I left some on. And then I tied colorful paper cranes and strips of red paper. Inside each crane and strip of paper are wishes that I made. So it's a wish-making cat's tail willow!

When friends and family come over, I'll have them make a wish and add to my wish-making willow, which I'm sure will be a fun activity, and it will definitely add meaning to the display.

By the way, the red slips of paper were cut from red envelopes that people give over CNY here. So I have a Taiwanese piece of CNY decoration with Japanese ornaments, and all of it in a French clay vase.


Back at work

Chinese New Year went by in a flash and I'm on my third day back at work. I forgot how difficult it was getting up at a different time every day, especially at 3h00 on Saturdays. But I think I'm doing OK in terms of stamina. Yesterday, after getting up at 3h00, anchoring until 12h00, I had lunch and a movie (Madagascar 2) with Ann, then another movie (7 Pounds) and dinner with Mom and Dad. By the time I got home again, I think it was 22h00. I only had a small headache and was only half a zombie. I'm happy.

Come to think of it, even CNY's passed and I still haven't finish making my new year's resolutions yet. Well, for starters, here are three.
1. Get a new job
2. Get a new boyfriend
3. Get to bed before midnight

Seem simple enough, no? Hm. No. I guess that's why they're called "resolutions," rather than "tasks."


My little headache's grown into a big one. Time for bed. See if I can sleep it off.


Tuesday, 3 February 2009

TV gig openings for foreigners - update 2

Are you a female Chinese-speaking foreigner married to a Taiwanese man and would like to go on TV?

There is a new TV talk show whose producer is interviewing candidates starting this week. It is a paid gig, and if the producer thinks you do well, it will be a regular gig as well. I am no affiliated with this show or the TV station what is doing it, I'm just helping a friend who is writing the show find his guests.

If you're interested, please post a comment to this post or message me in Facebook and include the following information.
1. What country you're from.
2. How long you've been here.
3. What your current job is.
4. Your email
5. A picture of yourself or a link to a picture of yourself.

(If you are sensitive about your info being seen on the blog (like I am), please just msg me via Facebook)

*You must be able to speak Mandarin or Taiwanese.