dissecting a childhood memory

My primary school, in the years that I was there, had a sort of miniature forest planted in a corner of the school grounds, near the staff carpark. There was a little dirt path that curved and wound its way through the mini forest, and connected the playground at one end with the little pond at the other. Along the way, there were a few benches, so one could sit and enjoy the serenity.

I hadn’t thought of that little forest in a very long time, but the other day, when I was walking down the street in the middle of the day, and the wind rushed through the trees that I was passing under – at that precise moment, I thought of that little forest, and for a split second, I was back there, sitting on a bench about midway down the path, reading a book. It was exactly as Anne Lamott describes in Bird by Bird – the way random, seemingly insignificant memories resurface out of nowhere years after the fact, and years since you last thought of them.

In this case, however, I think my mind might have been primed toward that kind of memory. This post isn’t actually about memories or forests. It’s about childhood and change.  Continue reading

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egregious word play

It’s interesting the things that we pick up from others when we spend enough time with them – little mannerisms, phrases and perhaps even perspectives and attitudes.

A colleague of mine (MM) some time ago mentioned that she’s started asking “how’s things?” as an alternative to “how are you?” because she’s heard me say it so much. I hadn’t even realised I said it so much until she mentioned it, nor did I realise it’s grammatically incorrect until just now when I wrote it out. Well, not like anyone ever questioned my question before anyway…

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Thursday Doors: diagonals

I hope you don’t mind sharp angles, because I’ve got a lot of them in this post…

I’m the kind of person who likes to find patterns and trends. I like to observe and analyse in hopes of finding order and logical reasons. Browsing through my collection of door photos the other day, I noticed a few doors that had diagonals in their design, so I figured I ought to put them together in a post. I will present the photos in chronological order of when I acquired them.  Continue reading

rationalising my commute

Over the last few months, I’ve been driving to work more. I still catch the bus/train on most days, but if I know we’re going to have a late finish, or if the weather is bad, or if I leave the house a bit late, then I decide to drive. Also, if I’m bringing cake/pie/fudge/whatever, it’s a lot easier to transport by car than by bus.

There were a couple of weeks around Easter that I drove to work every day. It was great – I cut down my commute time significantly, I got to work earlier and had time to enjoy tea/coffee before I started, and I often got some reading or studying done before work too (while drinking said tea/coffee). I walked with colleagues to the carpark after work, and complained with them about the lack of spaces in the lower levels. I listened to music while I was on the road, and had a chance to energise in the morning and to wind down in the evening.

After a time, though, it didn’t feel right.  Continue reading

just dance

It is a little-known fact about me that I like to dance. The other day I wondered why this is a “little-known fact” – why I never tell anyone this, as if it’s something majorly embarrassing – and then I read something in Bird by Bird and decided to write a post about it all.

Sure, Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird is mostly about writing, but the tagline says “some instructions on writing and life”, and that is the way I have taken it. The following quote is from the chapter titled “Broccoli” and is about finding, listening to, and trusting your intuition. (Yes, I do like that there is a chapter named after my favourite vegetable. It’s probably the only book I’ll ever read with a chapter named after broccoli.)  Continue reading

pigeon / peregrine

In Birds Art Life Death, Kyo Maclear makes mention of peregrine falcons. For those not familiar with this particular bird, it is best known for being the fastest animal on Earth, reaching speeds of 320-390km/h (depending on what source you go by) when diving for prey. I knew that fun fact since I was a kid (the fact that it’s the fastest, not the actual figures, of course).

Yet, even with my fascination with birds, I never knew much about peregrine falcons apart from the fact that they are so fast. I never thought to read up on this impressive bird, content with knowing that one fact. I’d always preferred eagles, anyway – probably I thought falcons appeared too lithe in comparison. (Probably a terrible generalisation, but I was just a kid, ok?)  Continue reading