Sunday, December 29, 2013

Dancing in the Twirl of Wind

It's getting constant. Every single loneliness that fills the time, always gets me to the core: I found fear. I remember John Mayer's in his song 'Stop This Train'. I didn't see it as something light, especially now, coz I feel the same.

The target is obviously missed. Look! Who am I? I still know me as nobody and being lost is my dear friend. 24 will be my next stop in 2014. Wish everything can just .... slow down while I'm running fast. Guess, it won't happen. And my other favourite buddy is confusion. It drags my fear to come at front and holds me back from stepping forward. So, don't ask why I need more time to breath and decide.

Getting in the end of 2013, I'm single, bored and scared. Clueless can be added. Worry is also regular lover. Questioning the years ahead and how my life will be like. My colleague, Tania, has resigned and John, my former lecturer and also from QFF will move to Bangkok. Everyone steps forward, but me.

Here I am sitting on my desk, writing with a glass of wine in my room, surrounded with scented candles lit at every corner, mellow music on, crying with empty stares to the screen.

There's a moment where I just follow where the wind takes me. There, I look back and see how I've been too ambitious, tough on my own self, but it didn't work out anyway. Life proves me wrong. Fate shows my weakness. World whispers me of hopelessness.

Wind blows dry. Dusty as it is that I can't see my path through. No grip, only the blow teases my steps, plays with my hair. Now it's twirling, I wanna dance for a while even though I know I might fall.




... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Salmon Recipe!



When my niece was proved that she enjoyed my salmon dish, I decided to cook some again. This time, more spices on top of the fillet and served with egg! I cooked the salmon with the same way I did on the previous post. So, here is the absolute recipe:

For the salmon:
1 salmon fillet (of course)
1 large-sized onion, chop into half and roughly chopped. Set another half aside.
2 cloves of garlic, slice and chop.
2 cloves of shallot, slice and chop.
Salt, ground black pepper, oregano.
1 tbsp of Worchestershire Sauce.

How? Slit the fillet a little bit. Put salt, pepper and oregano onto it. Then, heat oil on a pan. Toss garlic and shallot, saute until fragrant. Add onion, cook until tender. Gather all the onion, garlic and shallots to cover the bottom of the fillet. Put the fillet on it, cook another side after a while.

There!

As for the rice, I fried it with egg and the other half of the onion. I wrapped the rice with the egg, but it actually needed two eggs so all the rice could be wrapped in it.



If you read the last post, I cooked salmon yeah! Why? Because I bought a pack of Salmon fillet, and motivated myself to cook it soon with that post-it stuck on my wall. That day I felt so challenged, I did it. Hope you would try it!



... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Motivation-less.

The world keeps on turning. I'm still here. I'm doing nothing. I'm doing a lot.

Yet, confusions in me exists. Why am I still here? Why am I doing nothing? Why am I doing a lot but nothing good comes?

Every time I look around, you're not around.

I need a grip, I'm losing one, I got no friend.

But in my loneliness, anyone new I meet just leads me back to you. Why is that?

I lost my path. Me and my dreams are strangers now and forever.

No matter how often I got surprised by how small the world is... I still can't get my feet stand on the place where I should.


Why?




... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Things I Don't Understand



Apparently, the news about rape case against a poet named... SS went rampant. I bet you all choose not to comment on the case, I don't know any of these people involved.

But what triggers me to say something like this...is because what bothers me. And what bothers is how people (including women) react on why the victim (7-month-old pregnant college student) filed the case when it's almost too late. Ok, people try to make their guesses, "Maybe the deal with the guy is still unsettled or settled with not enough money given, so then she decided to report!", or "She could be have an affair with the guy, but when she got pregnant and he refused not to marry her as he's married, she changed her mind to report and stated that she was actually raped."

Why do people's assumption on rape cases always tend to stress that it's only a woman's lie? Why don't these people (including women) have any respect on other woman? Doesn't matter if there have been so many cases in the past where the woman lied, because in the past, there have been so many cases either where the guy were really being a jerk. One made-up case doesn't mean the next cases will be ended up the same. Why do these people (including women) hate other women that they prefer to oppress them?

And why...people tend to respect and even have sympathy towards the guy that he's being reported and life will surely be hard on him at time like this?

***

What's the problem with writing as a hobby? What's wrong with reading books? Well, take a look at my experience on this.

A few days ago, I went to a hotel for an event they held. I arrived there so early. At the time, nothing was happening, so it made me confused. I asked the front desk officer who were also confused. In the end, nobody was that helpful. 

Then came a girl who I thought as the Public Relations officer. She didn't even look at me, and just mingle around with the other journos. Then, after I showed I was quite furious, I went back to my seat and the girl stopped before me and smiled. I smiled back. But that's it. 

I decided to call my office and stating clearly on the phone of what's happening there. "Should I just go back?," I asked my colleague on the phone. In the end, I decided to grab lunch at a nice resto next to the hotel while I'm waiting for the driver to pick me up. I just don't want to eat anything served in that hotel. They serve badly, no hospitality.

After that, I went back to the hotel and waited. This time, the PR girl came up to me and asked, "Are you a journo?". I said, yes. And I told her I didn't get what it all meant. Everything was so messed up. She was mistakenly at first, thinking that I didn't speak Indonesian. Beh...

She sat to me and explained everything and cleared up all the misunderstanding. As a PR, she doesn't have a nice English accent, so you'd hear her as she's got to spit out something. Well, guess, this girl was my age. She, then, started to speak with me as we're friends already. Her approach was simply like college student just making friends.

She told me that she was confused the first time she saw me. Whether I'm a journo or just random hotel guests. But why don't you just ask? Yet, less in a minute, she forgot. She suddenly asked, "where did you sit? I just saw you just now and I didn't see you before this." Hmm...lied too quickly.

We sat again when she offered me a drink. She asked me, "Why do you choose Mass Communication studies?" I said that I love to write. And she just cut me and said, "Oh, you're just like my friend. She also loves to write bla bla bla...extrovert like you." Wait, what? "Then, I asked her to join me and my friends, then she started to become a lil bit, oh sorry I meant she was introvert, so she is a lil extrovert now," she continued. Like, ok... is anything wrong with being introvert? Anything weird with the fond of writing? What a narrow-minded stereotype!

What's worse? It's when she started to talk about herself on why she chose the university she went to, giving aloud her lame and standard reason as she said, 'the school makes me a better person.'

Kill me!




... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Stranger

So, if you read my previous post, you'll understand that I'm looking forward to get a new family home. While I'm also thinking to get a new home myself.

---

Time to recall. I'm 23 years old now, but once I was 18. My favourite age, my turning page. So I bet you all know we can change as a person who grow up into someone who know much better, although not all, just in five years.Once I'm a person who can't say 'no', but it seems lately that it has been my expertise to say what I wanna say, no matter people like it or not. Good, isn't it? I love being honest. But it is sad that some people can't just get it. They think that you change and start to be 'against them'. I'm just being fair as it is.

My views on religion, Indonesia and feminism has affected so many things around me, of course. Some people can't stand to be with me due to my choice and the way I see things. In other words, they just can't let people be happy the way they can, and not through the way most people do.

I can be very blunt in stating my opinions and delivering facts of everything I concern about. Unfortunately, people can't just give it a thought, and choose to unfriend me instead. Being different is hard no matter what. When I knew some of my friends left me because of that, well...I was very disappointed. Who wasn't, anyway?


I was very disappointed to know that even my friends that I care so much are able to treat me as a human being who might be different from them and have rights to choose on the way to live my life and also to speak my own words.

All I know that...whenever the time passes, everything is always getting better or maybe not. But as I got older, I know something's missing, left behind and being forgotten. There are also things got worsened. It's around me.

Yes, it's all around me. Remember my post about giving forgiveness?

Well that person again. Finally I knew something. Something about him, something about us. Never expected that this could happen this way. I believe no matter how close two friends can be, they can always grow apart. Yet, it's different.

It is supposed to be all the act of kindness and togetherness were based for friendship. Yeah, naivety brings me to think if this someone was being good to me because wanting a friend, trying to be best friends with me. The truth is... nope. Neither of those things was his reason.

I knew I trusted the wrong person. My secrets left in him, as well as my disappointment (again). The connection between us were ruined. The next time I met him...he's a stranger. I don't know him anymore. Sometimes, I can't still believe it, coz I felt our friendship was real and now I have to change the way I feel by seeing the real thing ahead my way.

So, thing's changed. Everything is changing and, so is everyone.

Once we can be inseparable, there will be one day strangers we're becoming.



... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Neighbours...

Once, I found an old picture of my sister when she was much younger---I wasn't born yet at the time. It was on Indonesian Independence Day and she was standing outside, overlooking the view of our neighbourhood. I couldn't say much, but all I can tell you, the situation nearby was clean, well-designed housing quartier and not crowded. It was in mid 80s.

In 1990, I was born. From much further I could start to recall, I've started to observe the neighbourhood myself, starting from my childhood memories. Here, it's getting crowded and more crowded by the time goes by. I remember there was only one shop and two small homey restaurants. Then, a mini market opened when I was about 7 years old until now, although it used to close for awhile due to a riot in 1998.


Since the year of 2000, it has been 3 times... new neighbours keep coming and stay at the house next door. First new one was nice, but it was quick stay. Then, another pack coming. No introduction to us, we didn't say 'hi' either. They used the house for commercial matters, they sold something I can't remember what. Somehow the business wasn't good for them. After a while, they closed down and resold the house.

The house was divided into two. When the seller guy stopped the business and left, the people who live next to him still keep on doing theirs. It's a small private education institute for children to learn read and write, including reading Quran. They paint the house with tacky purple and pink color. But it makes a good clue for taxi driver I ordered by phone to find my house anyway.

Lately, another neighbours start to occupy the empty house---between us and the weird purple-pinky. This time, the new neighbour paint the house in black and red, like a Korean restaurant, but it looked rather tacky too. Cheap paints and lame design. They didn't introduce themselves to us (again) and I don't know what they use the house for. They put a sticker of their brand logo. I really got no idea of what it is about (until now!)

But I can say, they're really curious of me. Once the taxi driver couldn't stop precisely before my house, so he stopped in front of their place. They were like, 'who is this stopping before my place?'. The girls in hijab were panic and told their male friend who soon rushed towards me and the cab. Since that day, they look at me like I'm some kind of weirdo. People can be so strange.

We got no choice now. The local officials have already stated that the area I've been living for 23 years. now, will be only legal as commercial area, not housing. So, we got to move from here. The other reason we could use to stay is...using the house, also, for commercial matters. Let's say, the simplest way is to turn our house into a home-stay and we stay in new house somewhere nicer. That's the least 'trick' we could do. My mom refuses to sell our home and just move away.



But no matter how, we all have to move and live somewhere else. This should be the biggest change for me. One point I see from this situation: it's not about how close it might be, change is everywhere, whether you realize it or you don't.

And it's just absurd to know if how long we've been staying in the area can't avoid us to become the stranger. Everyone around us change, new people keep on coming, thus we still the same. We're the strangers now.

I learn that there is a phase where we are all strangers to people that now we know very much. I'm sure I could get to know my neighbours soon enough, hopefully in a proper manner, within good timing, and for the best reason. But I also learn that people I know very much could turn back into strangers.

Read next on 'Strangers...'




... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Reborn!

As I might have told you before in one of my previous blog post, I have moved to work at Good Housekeeping Indonesia. Which is...good!

Indonesia will be the third country from around the world who is going to see the redesigned Good Housekeeping magazine. Obviously, with the new logo, new section names, and layouts. The contents? They're more engaging, dynamic and more updated. 

My first months were quite hectic-no hectic. Adapting myself with the new changes in the magazine isn't that easy, but I enjoy everything. This is my dream job. Guess, that what matters to me.

Below, you could see the cover of the first (reborn) Good Housekeeping magz. Anggun is in the cover!!! I can't believe it... coz I'm one of her biggest fans! Sooo proud of myself being involved in this issue with your fave French singer for the cover story.




As I arrived into the editorial team right at the time when the others were working on it, I didn't have many articles in this one. I got a lot of translating works, which were very challenging, like recipes! That one is my fave, by the way. For the very special issue, you can read (and try) the 10-page recipe sections. Some of them are on my waiting list to cook up!

This is going to be first recipe I'd try very soon!

Reborn is the main topic of this birthday issue. Oh I haven't told you that this is also GH's 10th bday. Just for an FYI, GH US is the oldest women magazine published by Hearst International, but we're still young-yet-mature in the age of 10! GH editors around the world sent their wishes and reborn tips to Indonesian team. Most of them make me realize how simple things could make you feel alive, happy and fresh. No need to look far away from where you're standing to get reborn.

As for my own reborn tips, I can tell that I feel like being reborn whenever I finish my favourite RPG-adventure video game, book or after watching good movies. Cooking, strolling outdoor or getting stuck in the middle of bookshelves in a library or book stores with good music on my ears will do, too!

Wish me luck with everything there! As well as for the magz and the team =)



... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

My Date with... Doraemon!


I have a very special encounter with Doraemon. I was a little kid, watching Doraemon is a must. But my admiration grows as I get older. I know better about this amazing creation of Fujiko F. Fujio. 

Besides, I think we have sort of connections. I was born on the 9th day of the 3rd month, and Doraemon was born in the 9th month and on the 3rd day. Funny! Doraemon was initially named MS-903 in the factory he was made. MS was also my last two name initials. Marcella Steelhart.

***

It was a good day! For almost a month, there was a Doraemon expo in every Lippo-owned mall. One day before it ended, I finally managed to visit Plaza Semanggi. I was late, as there was only one small booth, selling Doraemon merchandise. Some were discounted, some weren't. Anyway, who cares?! It's Doraemon!

On the very last day, I visited Pejaten Village first. They said there's also Doraemon expo here with bigger booth. Yes... I bought two Doraemon tees, scrapbook album and ID neck strap. And that's it. Well, at least, I could find good stuff of Doraemon. Then, I hopped to another mall, which was Kemang Village! Once again, they said....the huge Doraemon expo was there!

Yep! It was... as you can see on the top of the blogpost. They greeted me with that tall arch! 

Here and there, Doraemon!

A big Doraemon stood and fenced at the outdoor entrance. I love it... I wish I went there with someone so I could have a pic of me with him. But I came there all alone. But I guess that was okay. Doraemon is always together with me in my heart. Only, I had no photo with him together as the result.


Here, Doraemon got the special stage, and the REAL EXPO! It felt like the Doraemon Museum in Kawasaki! Or maybe not that much. Well, for the first timer like me, this could work. I was lucky when I got there. Coz after I looked around the whole expo and bazaar for some time, I was surprised! I got a chance to meet Doraemon and the team! 

The mall hold a Doraemon show on the stage which didn't happen most of the time during the expo. But it was the last day and I was there = PERFECT! I could see Doraemon smiling and dancing a little bit. Very funny as he's chubby and cute. Another perfect thing about this Doraemon is... he could wink! Oh I wish I had the photo... 

The show, me and Doraemon, some details and my new stuff!

For those who doesn't know...yet... Doraemon was yellow when he was first created. This explained why he turned into blue cat-like robot. 



At this mini-expo, you can see giant comics, Doreamon's magic tools and the figurines. I even got a chance to take pics with Suneo and Giant. But I didn't get the chance to be with Shizuka...and Nobita and Doraemon. As for Shizuka, I got her pic while she was led into the expo hall, but the time ran out when I stepped closer to her. Too many people queued to take pics with them. 

As for Doraemon and Nobita, I didn't know. I wasn't informed. Well, I didn't check if there was a promotion. If you wanted to take pics with those two, you got to register and all. And it was the last day... so you know. 

The legendary anywhere door and time machine!



Lots of stuff! I was happy. I didn't mind flying away from home to the far far away Kemang and Pejaten to see Doraemon. I was fully satisfied, although I went there alone. 

***

Doraemon is a symbol of optimism that the future will be better than the present. His arrival from the 22nd century sent by Sewashi is a sign that things are going to be just fine in the next chapter of our lives if we start doing as good as possible by today.

One day, I will be sipping my hot Japanese tea under the falling Cherry Blossom petals in the spring... with Doraemon.

Lifetime obsession, timeless imaginary best friends.



... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Post-Panic Attack

I'm ready for the storm to come.
To come and shake the air and sky.
Tearing apart my courage.

My head is heavy right now.
I know it's falling against my body's will.
The will to keep on standing tall...or maybe just to sit still.

The music is on. Plays with upside down mood.
Cracking the soul that is as hard as a stone.
But is a magic like a drop of water that make a small hole that matters on the surface.

The lyric was 'I'll be around...'
'I'll be around' sang along for three times in a row.
Opening my eyes, I prove it wrong.



... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Semarang


I was there for a day. From Jakarta to Semarang. I took off around 9ish, which caused me to waking up by forced around 6 and ran off to airport about thirty minutes later. 

And yes, I arrived very early. There was much time for me to stroll around, grabbed my Starbucks cup and had breakfast. I even had my quality time at Periplus and bought a comic strip. Garfield one, yay! Psst, this is my first time, traveling alone by myself. I'm a late bloomer in almost anything. So, kinda nervous...fear of getting lost, worried of missing the flight or skipped a procedural check-in step. But it went well... Only going to Semarang, anyway, taking one hour and a half to get there. 

Hmm...Semarang is a capital city of Central Java. Big city in the province. But, when you got there, you'd feel like being in the middle of 90s face of Jakarta and the Jakarta you've seen in previous five years. Well, another late bloomer it seems, yet, their people really has Jakarta as their resource. Not to mention, those people's eyes in the Paragon Mall were all around my cute boots.

I was sent to report the first Semarang Fashion Festival. I got to know a lot more people and met some fellow journalists from Jakarta. I won't tell how the event was like, as I have written about it in three different articles for three magazines. Bored? Yes! But, the event was nice, though.

As you see at the top of the blogspot, the sky that morning when I was on the plane was so-so. Nothing special. But I got nicer photos from the fashion show session and a little hangout after.

Me and Kerastase team went to a pastry store called Oen. Very vintage and famous for their delicious meals. They also served a la carte food, such as pasta and rice. But as I have eaten too much since I was there, my friend and I ordered Poffertjes to share. We proved it, it was nice.



I learned that Semarang was less traffic than it is in Jakarta. Hell, obviously! And their lifestyle is much different. Like I have written here before, you'll see the old look of the town and how the people live their lives like the Jakartans years ago. I could see that they still enjoy humane thingy, like having non-digitalized moments. I'm not saying the more digital you go, the less human you become. Nope! 

The point I absorb was they're enjoying meeting people and not driven by consumerism. When they said that Oen shop was famous, it wasn't crowded. Instead, it was very far from that. Only three tables were occupied when we were there. But, it IS famous and has been standing for years. What happens in Jakarta is...if a place served very yummy meals, then it will be crowded anytime. Remember Ocha & Bella?



The night...is always nice if you enjoy it from above. I went home on the same day. Very tiring but fun!


... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Monday, September 2, 2013

My Giveaway: Second Chance and Forgiveness

We're all blurry lights in the night

A post on my Facebook timeline made me thinking of something. Something...that has happened lately. About being human, making mistakes and keep going on with life.

As I have written before, something has happened. Lately. But it's not the first time I undergo such hard situation. Someone I trust(ed) fails did a thing we won't forget. For all of us, this is also not our first time. We did face it. But this time, we're not taking the same route. There's a time when you have to look deeper in the ocean and see if everything is not always the same, but they're just ALMOST the same.

(you'll know why I stroke the word 'fail' later on, implicitly)

No matter how similar or different the thing we had before and the one we have today, the problem is that we're drown in lies. 

Maybe I was overreacted. Could be not. It might be... natural as a human being, like when you cry, even while you were in cab on your way home, and asking 'why' in regret of trusting the wrong person. Silly me! In fact, it's natural emotion that comes out whenever you feel disappointed. This is a lesson. Everything I face in life I take it as lessons. I need to be someone bolder with iron heart. (Remember, I'm a Steelhart. Well, at least, that's my last name).

I wrote on my Path the other day, "Today is the last time I lay my trust on others. Whoever it would be...". Before the bad news was soon vaguely confirmed, I knew it. My heart dropped. How could I be so stupid and all. Again, I found myself in regretting phase.

As days go by, I realize it's all... natural. It takes more lessons before you're skilled enough in life. Many levels, each steps getting trickier to win. Then, I thought of something last night. What if one day I make the same mistake? Everyone makes mistake. It'd be too conceited of me when I say or think that I can't do or fall into the same shit. As this situation started from...

Lies. I can lie. Everyone can lie. 

Money makes people lost themselves. Hard situation pushes people going out of their minds. It all started with, 'People can lie everyday, right?'

But shall we giveaway our forgiveness and second chances for those who have done wrong? Simply, why not? People can be good. People can be bad. I guess it would be wise of us, if we look up a person from whole aspects. Today, he does a bad thing, maybe he didn't in the past or he won't in the future. As Mahatma Gandhi once said, "You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty."

We only can deliver forgiveness and second chance. That's all. We're human. As we heard most of the time, 'human makes mistakes'. Yes, we're not God. Therefore, it would be better if we don't see ourselves as the Almighty who will not create any mistakes. Understanding that a person is having his darkest moment, it means we're treating him as a human---the same creature like us, who can do the same mistake. Mistake comes easily, in return, we have to get up and walk on. Fixing the mess and not running away. Staying strong. A reason to relive the life. That's second chances and forgiveness (to ourselves or to others) are for.

It's not our cup of tea, though, to believe in changing a person. To change, it's a choice. On others, that cannot be not our command. If someone wants to, he/she will.

It took years for me to keep it in mind if a person does something wrong, sometimes, it doesn't make him a total bad person. Seriously, it is a big deal for me. But I found that there's a specific second chances we can give away which are...the second chance for the people who did something wrong to live like us, be part of us---the world---and continuing his life as anyone else should. 



No matter what, like people might always say, "we forgive, but we won't forget." Anything you did in the past will follow you around. Accept it, you can't run. Once a glass is broken, no matter how great the way you mend it... the crack cannot be hidden. Some second chances are made for those to go back and start over, but some are made to find another thing so we all can say 'life goes on'.

Somehow after all the self-battle in seeing this case differently, I choose not to forget that this person has been a good friend. I trusted him. I told him my secrets. I opened up to him. I did. And I won't forget those positive sides of his. Time only lets us grow out of it for some time.

Of course, I appreciate when he comes up delivering his regret and sorry. Saying 'sorry' for the chaos one has created is not something easy. Not just for him, not just for me. Everyone deals with tough time for it when such thing thrown at us.

I also believe, that sometimes, the story of 'why' always brings up a new shocking enlightening. I'm open to be all ears for the whole background story.

'You're hurt?'
Yes... I am.. Anyone else does. So?

The point is... anyone would hurt you. People make mistakes. Has been all my life, I found that everyone, really, everyone tries to hurt me. Even those in my own family. Everyone will hurt. You will hurt people as well. And it's not about forgiving those who are worth to sacrificed for, but it's about how to take ourselves and to keep distance with almost everyone. You need to stand alone, even though you got to know when you should or could lean on. Mastering the art of taking care and protecting our lives are the key. Life is full political game, even if you're not in the government.

I learn that I need to stop trusting people like crazy. Some part of me is better left inside for personally myself. Nothing is always predictable. On the other hand, I learn how precious and worth one's trust could be. I value mine highly.

But, I recall it again...

Someone can be good, can turn to be bad, and can turn back into a good person. Anyway, I bet we've also heard this one very often, 'nobody's perfect'. It's just not that a person is unsuitable to trust as in Paulo Coelho's quote that I would never forget (and I believe in so much): 'there's nothing ever completely right, even stopped clock is right for twice a day.' So, we're heading to the fact that we actually didn't trust the wrong person. But it's only that people change, as we all do. Anyway, we can't always do something right.

We can't let a person be broken down and failing his whole life for one humanly mistake that he would already be willing to pay for. In certain cases, maybe I can work this situation out according that opinion of mine.

No matter how hard it is for you. Regretting phase should be get over with and ended up with giving away the second chances for those who might have shared part of his life with you, as a friend, family, colleague, and even strangers. I think we also need to remember, in our lives, we make mistakes. And there have been million times where second chances come to us, even when we don't literally see them.

Remember, everything happens for a reason...

And I...need to forgive myself, so I can trust again.

See things inside clearly =)


... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Remedy

This is kinda my remedy
Funny! When you're clueless on why you're just still standing at the same place you were in 5 years ago, I'm feeling down. Obviously. To my surprise, the core problem is: I don't know how to make people like (or love) me. It caused me unable to reach my target to be 'Forbes' Rich Girl Under 25'. Ha! LOL not that... seriously!

Yes, because of you-can't-make-people-like-you = trouble! Always is. People will response Just-Be-Yourself thing is just not working to me. And we, now, have to face the fact that Just-Be-Yourself is SO OVERRATED! Truth. You can't be totally yourself in almost anywhere, including your own room. Why? Simple...

We have to blend ourselves.

We have to shape ourselves into a chain that connects us to the others. Forming power and harmony.

...

...but what if we're forming dark side of the world even more stupendous? We're playing God with power we want to have. What if so? Can we say 'no'?


I am no longer strong as I used to be. Something's changed. Well, everything changes. Me too. I guess it's normal. Or, maybe it's not. But maybe it's ok.



Sugar on the table. Bittersweet, coz you can't taste it.

Let me grow so I can touch the moon


Powerless, I'm in need of remedy. Sad songs move me too strongly. Shakes me so deep. Burning like fire in the water. My dear friend, circumstances, want me to play turning tables. I'm just not good enough. It's a real deal to sleep with eyes open, clarity in each air I breathe. Huh, how bittersweet it is...

I'm looking at the moon far above. It's still there... at the same spot shining by distance as it was 23 years ago when I was born. I want it. Touching the moon and dance over the sky. But la luna stays... and I'm here, not moving any closer.

Enjoy the songs... Everyone's Mixtape nails it!




... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Moving On


I don't know whether I have mentioned this before in a previous blog post. Don't remember much of what I have written in here. But, well, this is my story...

It's been a year for me to write for Hair Ideas Indonesia magazine and it's time to call it quits. I'm not going to tell a story about my silent farewell (read: forgiving in moving on). Nope, not even a word. Something better (or heavier?)

Umm, I hate farewell by the way...

Of course, within a year, there has been so much I could've told you. Anyway, you know, people always come and go. And a few days ago, (I still can't believe that) it was my turn. I decided to leave the magazine and move to another magazine published under the same company, which is Good Housekeeping starting August 2013. 

Firstly, I think it will be whole new adventure and challenge. Different style, different people, different readers. Secondly, I had worked for two different trimonthly magazines in a row. So, let's give monthly magz a try this time. 

How did I start it one year ago?
It began when 2 years ago I worked for wedding magazine because I don't like weddings or marriage. Not to challenge myself that I might change my mind about it, but I thought, that time, I would learn how to write for people's good, instead of for myself. It makes you tough and fair. As you see, maybe the idea worked a bit. 

Then, I quit for finishing my thesis, before I finally landed on Hair Ideas, a UK-franchised magazine of another company. This time, specifically focus on hair and beauty stuff would turn me into something, maybe. Despite a new fresh start... I was hoping to see more chances open and gain more knowledge in fashion and beauty subjects. 


Working on my hair brush...
On the go, challenges and barriers come back-and-forth. I couldn't differ those two as they were coming alike to my way. I turned tougher. I really did. By the time goes by, I realize if that was what it should be like. I'm destined to. Magical thing happens. I can't just tell you what exactly it is. But, that was my hardest year. 

Hardest situation pushes you off the limits. I can say, it's like the circumstance where you gotta know when we have to draw out of the lines. If Carl Jung ever believed that 'the self consists of layers', maybe I can jump to a conclusion that someone (a layer) who has been hiding inside, deep, very deep in me until I couldn't see before her, has now come out. Another me. Knowing every part of me better at the end.

Later, while I was still on the way running to nowhere in the middle of time, a question came up to surface. I was struggling to keep up with everything. Someone asked...

"Is this really your passion?" 

Well yeah, it really is. Or was. The question could mean to me, is this the real of who you are? The person I've been becoming all this time around, taking me farther away from the one I should be. Time was just rolling over, and you got to act. I remain loving it. Loving the thing that I'm doing. I will stay. I got to choose... 

Anyway, during this one year along, I met more people to learn from. Experts. Smart people who could lead you to a surprising journey of life. Somehow, on the other side, I also learn that a leadership takes more of a bigger hearted person. Age doesn't mean anything if you just let your life passes by. With no fear to face. No responsibility to take. Only safe and secure along the straight road. Nothing great will ever have your back. 

Guess what, baby? I can work it up with flat iron in many cool ways now! Well at least, brushing my hair more often. 

I can't share much of what I have done for the magz. But this is one of the projects done I love... 

There will be one more issue left to come, but due to some reasons it hasn't come out yet now. Will share when it arrived. Coz I wrote so many in that issue.

I will miss the time I cried at night asking myself, is this what I want? Or, is this what I actually search for? Look at me now! Am I there yet? Where should I be now? And, why I'm not there...

Glad that I can move on. It's not easy. I will miss the odd comfort zone I have created myself unknowingly for the one whole year. I will miss my habit, my desk, etc. Everything... The situation forms strange feeling that have my heart wrenched. Like a touché sensation. The something-new effect. Nothing stays the same, we should understand.

All I can wish is... I know I might have not emptied the trash bin, or never will able to, I hope I could have better and strong steps forward no matter what. Pray for me please...

I imagine it's saying for things to be just alright

P.S.: This world...so many people, but so little trust. There's no one to trust. Keep up with it, guys...

... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Monday, July 15, 2013

Marriage, Wedding On Another Side

In case you haven't heard, there was a book event in Jakarta last time the town had Car Free Day. So the campaign was to sell books in lower price and then the profit will be donated to children in remote areas. In this event, you can volunteer to sell those books or even to donate your second-hand ones.

But, I couldn't make it. Both on Saturday or Sunday. But I contacted them and they said they would need me to help them on Monday to tidying everything up. Saying yes, there I go.

You would be surprised of the people who organized it. Strangers helping strangers. That always impresses me. The person in charge was Zack, then I met his friend, Patar.

I can't say much as I was there for one hour only and didn't help a lot. But you can always think that miracle does happen. And books can be gems to some people.

Moreover, after Patar kept joking around with Zack and me, he later asked me, "Are you Chinese?" I answered, "Maybe, yeah." I wonder why people always question that to me, or why does it even matter? Then he told me, "My wife is Chinese, too. Well, I'm a Batak."

"Oh really? Hehehe, but how come you also have Chinese looking eyes?" I asked back, jokingly.

"Well yes, now I'm half Chinese."

Hmmm... "Oh?"

"When you're married, you're not two different people anymore. But you both are one. That's why, coz my wife is a Chinese then I'm half Chinese. So my wife, she's half Batak now."

It is very often for me to hear people say 'Two Become One' like in Spice Girls' song. (Yeah, the one that my ex boyfriend played as his wedding soundtrack). Somehow, no matter how often it has been spoken to me, that kind of thought never pops me in my head. I have never seen it that way before Patar mentioned such witty-yet-simple point of view.

Strangers...any time you meet one, or two...you will never know what surprises come your way.

That moment makes me thinking. How could I miss it? Even though it doesn't make me think to want a marriage. But the moment I realize it was able to put a smile on my face. It was both good and absurd day. I can't agree more. It was very sweet thought, though.

Later on, the person in charge I contacted, Zack, told us that he was getting married.

Yep, everyone's getting married. Are you?

Or, you're gonna be alone like I am?

Since that day, I still can't get this song away from me. Maroon 5 with 'Love Somebody'. The music video idea is seriously awesome. It matches everything with me, the whole situation, things that bother in my head... literally everything. I miss to miss someone. Really do.


... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

[REVIEW] Welcome to the Rileys

Someone saw me depressed. Yeah.. that's weird, isn't it? She's not even someone close to me.

In this kind of confusing phase, I think the song that would go perfectly to my situation is Chasing Pavement by Adele. Coz it's been what I'm doing lately these times. I don't know how to stay out of trouble or make my life back on track, figure out the things that go wrong... Not so smart for that.

This been a tough year. I feel I'm turning into dull person with stiff brain, clueless mind. Add scared fingers to type with to the list. I just don't know what I am. To entertain myself, I re-watched Twilight Saga movies. From Twilight to Breaking Dawn Part 2. Oh yeah... Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart dig it!

But then I landed to watch Kristen Stewart's other movies. Independent movies mostly. Well I appreciate actress who love to work for indie ones. Anyway, she can act despite other negative (and harsh) critics thrown to her. The indie movies are the proofs.

Started from Speak, The Yellow Handkerchief to... Welcome to the Rileys. These movies helped me filling my hollow moment during the empty weekend. When you're feeling so down, drowning into the dark where you can't see yourself anymore, watching movies will take you out.


***


So the movie, Welcome to the Rileys, really played my emotion. It's touchy, a bit funny with foul words and a little sad. When something makes you feel mixed emotions, you'll feel like you're just back being human. So I guess it's the way this movie worked on me. Thanks then.

The story is quite simple-old couple who has decent life, looks fine outside, yet keeping their spaces apart from each other. Married for 30 years, both of the husband and the wife who has lost their 15-year-old daughter drag themselves into sadness caused by the tragic loss. Unconsummated marriage, passion-less and disconnection to the outside world was the background story of the two.

Doug, the husband, was involved in an affair with a waitress who later dies of heart attack, causing him to be lost even more. While, his wife locks herself in the house as guilt surrounds her days.

Later, Doug travels to New Orleans for business trip and accidentally meets an underage stripper (and prostitute). The name is Mallory, or Jennifer, Roxy, or many other she keeps changing to different clients of hers. But the real name is Alison. Unlike Doug and his wife Lois, she's obviously troubled, wild and unstoppable with explosive emotion. She stays in a run down house, next to her co worker, only with better looking house and kids along.

Things between Doug and Mallory gets odd. He offers $100 a day to stay in her house, as well as tidying and cleaning it up, ordering a proper bed and fixing the lights. Far deep, Doug is actually trying to give away his fatherly love to Mallory as she's rather similar to his late daughter, Emily. By helping her out of trouble, he sees that he could help himself for gaining his lost life---truly, by just being a father.

On the other side, Lois is trying to fight the grief and fear by facing the sunlight, getting into her car and drive. She senses something is wrong with Doug and plans to save her marriage. When she finally meets up with Doug, she is terrified seeing how messed-up Mallory looks like and what she does for living. But in the end, she is willing to stay in the house with them, also reviving herself by acting as a mom to Mallory. Through talking with her, Lois is felt opened up that it's not her fault that an accident happened to her real daughter.

Having Mallory together, Lois and Doug go too far. Losing themselves again by thinking if she's their daughter, while the truth is she can't be and doesn't want to be.

It is a quite tricky situation that most people are usually trapped into. Where people are lost and troubled in their own way. What seems outside doesn't reflect what's inside becomes a barrier to overcome in understanding each other. Like in iceberg theory. It takes heart-to-heart talk to see things through like Mallory and Lois do, as their biggest problem is what lies deep down within one self. The unspoken connection has been the string that enlivens the whole story which is actually just simple.

After flat-feeling plot, the story comes to its peak: The troubled young girl ends the old couple's self problem in her way. Leaving them with no choice, except to realize that they couldn't do the same 'parental' mistakes to her and move on.

What I learn from the movie is... sometimes second chance is not always sweet. It is an opportunity what's wrong in the past, let us forgives ourselves and not about repeating the same thing in right way. Also, that we would never know who will be our life savior.

Exactly like what I have written before, in the beginning the story is just so flat. Lack of music scoring could be one of the reasons that I was hardly moved by the introduction part. It's questionable, though. But then, power of the story starts to be clear when the personal collision happens among the characters which is good.

As for the characters, they are well-portrayed by James Gandolfini, Melissa Leo and Kristen Stewart. Gandolfini and Leo certainly are very convincing in depicting the situation the couple's facing in the story line, and Stewart shows that she can really bring the destructive soul into Mallory who is totally different from Bella Swan.

I rate this 4 out of 5.


P.S. Well, I will start putting non-book reviews in this blog, as for book ones, you can always read it on my bookblog.



... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Friday, May 17, 2013

Table 13

It would be the second time I visited that Japanese restaurant. They served well and the Tempura Udon was just amazing the first time I tried to taste it with some friends.

Bright mind to start a new thinking!

I was alone. Right after a meeting (on Sunday), I took off to a mall nearby my main job office. Sitting down in a seat of four at the corner, then I ordered the same menu like I had for the first time there and took quite longer for me to have a cute-looking drink and sweet garnished desserts.

And....

"Hey you... wanna fight me?"

The scream made me shocked a little and I started to stare around, not moving my head that much. My sight searched for the source of the loud voice, but I couldn't find it. I was getting deaf I guessed.

Then it came again, "You dude, you... in red checkered tops! Show me your ID!!!"

That one made me confused. Who was the guy? Where was he? And how did he look like? I thought he might be one of the creme-de la-creme clan who controlled the 1/4 of whole money of the state. The same characteristic... they got guts. Just like this man, I scanned it from his voice.

I saw around. The other visitors...some...also looked around. Looking for the source of the voice. Some weren't distracted. As for the waiters and waitresses... one of them was smiling indiscreetly, some were kinda distressed, some were annoyed. BUT, none of them was going to one site to act on anything.

When my menu served, I asked the waitress, "What's wrong with the loud voices?"

"Umm, sorry, which voices?" she asked me back. That's kinda funny. How come she didn't even notice...

"That loud voice," I repeated. "It's like somebody is fighting, mad or what?"

Hmm... Yes, my friend?
I saw later her face was changed, as if she had already expected that I might ask about it. "Ahh, that one. It's a guy from table 13. He's always like that. I'm sorry if you're disturbed," she finally closed my curiosity.

"No, it's ok. Not your fault." I said. "But did he order something or just sit there?"

"Sometimes he ordered food. But mostly he just always sit there, at table 13, and drinks 'ocha'."

That's weird, isn't it?

I tried to take a look of his face. But I only got the back and side of his head. Well, yet I could tell, he was around 50s years old, classic-looking Chinese guy, kinda flamboyant with painted silk shirt (and colorful, d'oh). I could assume he might be a person that's stuck in his old good days in 70s. Additional info: he has high-volume hairstyle like a male lion. Yes, you got it, right?  You got what I'm saying, did you?

Deeply deeper. Actually, he's just like me. I know it. Alone. Stares around his surroundings. Apart from family (as mine were celebrating Chinese New Year celebration that bored me enough with the whole grand family of my dad's side involved. And mind the whole chit-chat tradition). His mind messed up, like mine.

He's not one of the super rich clan with freak guts. Maybe. Who cares? To me, to all the people in the resto, he's a stranger. Seeing that guy just made me asked myself. Can I be alone, just alone, in my 50s? Note: if I'm still alive. It caused doubts to reach me and question all of my early decisions---decisions on being alone, never married and have kids. The root of the problems is a mixture of these two, which are 'Am I that strong enough?' and 'Am I getting too far to get right?'

If the guy could come to the mall, walked to the same resto and sat at the same table 13, and bought something...he might have money. Did his family give it to him and let him be away all he wanted? Well, yeah...I'm getting too far for a little curiosity. It shouldn't be my problem. Not a concern for a girl like me, who always tried to ignore stuffs around. But I just feel that this could be a reflection, an early warning for me, on my decisions and views---or a threat from the universe?

In my heart, I tried to figure out of the guy's character, emotional state, and his background story, leading me to think of what had happened to him. And his family? Where are they? Do they know that he's almost always there, at his favorite table?


***

Such situation...we'll come up to a question, "where's his wife? Where are his children?" But we never ask, "Where has he been doing?" Oops, I just made three in total.

I against my tradition. Married...kids. What for? What should I repeat those freaking moment that they call as 'circle of life'? I have my own life. I believe what people think as something that should be. A must!

For everything I try to create in me is...being independent. Financially, it goes to number one. You can't live without sufficient money and secure. Most people think I will get those (in this situation, if you're a woman) when you marry a man, as the theory is... he has responsibility to give you all. And if you're a man, ...er... you will be guaranteed not to be hungry and live in dusty houses with dirty clothes to wear.

Well, oh well, there's no guarantee that a man will not cheat you and give his money more to his mistress or random girlfriends. Worst? He can just leave you without anything left. Additional worst case, if you have children and your hubby doesn't care of them anymore, which means YOU got to cover everything! Another worst case? Whether your hubby makes you infected by STD as he's cheating on you! Ooh, thank you!

By the time goes by, I think further and design my future in complex structure. The temptation is always there: just a blink and everything is ta-daa! But I know, it's time to get real. You can't get respect if you don't respect yourself by not living the way you want. When this happens, even your family can't help out. And another note to take: no children, you can be just alone in your old days.

But, having one....your younger days will be hard as well. Which one do you choose?

Aww...I'm thinking...of something *woof*
I still choose not to. Most of the time, I think of having a partner. No kids, strictly. Why? I'm working woman, devoting my life for career... and in this world, you can't always choose both. Kids will need more time with their parents, good school, good nutrition to feed... Can I afford that? Financially and in a matter of time? What about life values? Their future is based on the seeds you plant in their early life. Some people never think that far. Most parents wanna-bes only think of the 'fun' and tradition of life... Responsibility is missing from their agenda.

Most people will say, "you don't know what will happen one day!" or "who knows things get better once you try to have one!". Hey, that child...would be other person! Other person out of you that you will be responsible to. And you just underestimate his future!

I strictly choose not to have children, or marry. I know most people hear this (or read this) and would say, "don't say that!" Yeah, knew it. It happens many times. Or, people who don't know me (who talks to me just a time or two in a month or in 3 months) will joke around say, "Yeah, I pray that you will have kids and change your mind." They think that it would be the best for me to have kids. Who are they? I should say to them back, "I'll pray you regret everything in your life, that you children one day will regret to have parents like you, as well!"

Uhm, I'm thinking of something, too!
Seriously, I can tell... those kind of people...aren't your good friends. Or my good friends! Or good people. Coz what? They never try to understand the whole thing that has shaped you to this day until you make such decision. What they say as the best thing will only bring the end of the world to me. Just because you're young, it doesn't mean that you don't know anything. Just don't be a smart-ass when you're old later on. A decision, complex and 'far' one couldn't just come by a click, could it?

No longer questionable that there are people who thinks they have pieces of you. By just seeing you, then they're acting if they already know you so much that they could tell you what's good for you. I know what's good for me. Different or the same way most people do, none of anyone's concern. And being different apart from you isn't always the wrong side of the world.

I know where I stand. I know what I want. I know what I need. And I know where to stand... Now, I'm keep on trying. Fixing mistakes, sharpen ideas of a great future of my own.

The Chinese New Year scene about the Table 13 guy has given me insightful rhetoric reflection. For my temporary judgement, whether that guy was just acting crazy to bring down the resto's image...OR he has been living in 'safe' way that people do and now he's betrayed.

Am I getting too far? Oh yes.. It's so me. Thinking far and complex is my expertise.

So, thankfully.. I'm 23, knowing what's best and keep on improving the future and my todays. Refusing to be clueless in my old days. Trying to love my life. Forgiving the past. Standing on my own. Stop self-pitying and selling sad stories.

And thus, yes... I choose to be alone in my old days. Note: I'm still alive :)

Good luck!

... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Monday, April 22, 2013

21.04

Kartini...

Tahun 2013. Tahun ini...


Hari ini, kita hanya akan mengenang dia: Kartini. Perempuan Jawa. Pahlawan wanita yang paling diingat bangsa absurd ini. Dari segudang wanita yang berjuang untuk perubahan. Nama Kartini yang disebut, diingat dan dikenang.

Kemana yang lain?

Tidak hanya kita mengabaikan banyak perempuan lain yang menghembuskan atmosfir perjuangan. Kita sudah banyak lupa!

Kita lupa, bahwa perempuan bukan makhluk nomor dua. Hanya karena percaya jika Hawa diciptakan dari rusuk Adam. Kita lupa, untuk sebaiknya tak percaya pada tahayul yang sexist.

Kita lupa, perempuan memang istimewa tapi tidak perlu diistimewakan. Karena kami sama dengan yang laki-laki. Siapapun dari kami, tak perlu atau seharusnya merasa superior.

Kita lupa, kalau perempuan kadang lupa. Perempuan punya tenaga untuk membawa tasnya sendiri. Laki-laki pun lupa bahwa setiap orang, baik mereka sendiri atau perempuan, punya energi yang terbatas untuk membawa massa berat yang besarnya setengah dari badannya. Tak ada satupun dari mereka yang diciptakan dewa, berkekuatan mesin melawan hukum gravitasi.

Kita lupa, untuk berpikir lagi. Menjadi ibu, menjadi istri...bukan yang membentuk seorang perempuan menjadi seorang wanita. Bukan rahim dan jodoh yang menentukan nasib mereka.

Kita lupa, pernikahan bukan akhir yang indah. Anak tidak selalu jadi penyelamat. Perceraian sering pula menjadi jalan keluar dari kegelapan.

Kita lupa, pada siapapun kita menikah, perempuan tetap perempuan. Perpisahan tidak akan melumpuhkan. Perempuan akan tetap jadi wujud utuh, bernama manusia, seorang individu.

Kita lupa, hampir semua perempuan pasti pernah dikecewakan laki-laki. Tapi tidak semua dari mereka memilih untuk tidak menikah, kan? Jadi, jangan lupa bahwa ada perempuan tidak mau menikah, bukan karena trauma dikecewakan.

Kita lupa, perempuan bisa bahagia kala ia melangkah sendiri, tanpa rasa sepi. Namun heran, kita selalu lupa cerita tentang pria kesepian yang tersesat.

Kita lupa untuk tidak mengeluhkan 'kemana ibunya?' ketika seorang anak gagal dalam hidupnya.

Kita lupa menanyakan 'kemana ayahnya?' saat seorang anak dilanda masalah.

Kita lupa, selalu lupa, jika seorang anak adalah tanggungan kedua orang tuanya. Bukan cuma ibunya, bukan cuma ayahnya. Seorang...

Ayah sering kali lupa, jika si ibu (mungkin) juga bekerja. Labrakan 'saya kerja, kamu urus anak!' sudah tidak berlaku.

Semua lupa, jika dunia lebih kejam pada perempuan. Semua lupa untuk menyalahkan laki-laki yang berselingkuh, akan tetapi ingat untuk menyalahkan istrinya dan juga simpanannya. Mencari kekurangan mereka. Kita lupa, laki-laki juga 'manusia' yang punya hidup sendiri dan bukan robot yang harus terus disetel.

Dunia hanya akan lupa dan lupa...

... lupa jika perempuan pernah ada. Karena mereka hanya diajarkan untuk diam, duduk manis seperti boneka. Tidak pernah didengar. Hanya dilihat bak pajangan. Melupakan nyawa dan pikiran yang hidup, melupakan fakta bahwa mereka makhluk hidup, yang sama dengan yang (katanya) diciptakan pertama kali (oleh sumber yang tidak jelas).




21.04

... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Agnes' Last Day at Work

Seeing people, one by one, leaving the company I'm working now isn't something new. People come, people go. Oh yeah, just like men in my love story. Again? Oh wait! Do I actually have a love story? Oh anyway, let's skip that part!

Employees come and go. I remember when one of my dear colleagues finally left work early this year. Hopefully for much better future, so time to cross our fingers.


So, this is Agnes!

Our desks are side by side, so practically we're close and we kinda know almost everything we do with our computer. Ha! We got closer and grew to know each other much more when I helped here with my knowledge of lingerie. Yes!!! I gave her names of places where she could find some more for her fashion spread photoshoot matters. Then, we started knowing and sharing anything that happened around us. Let's say, thanks to insecurity! LOL xD

Her last day... well, I couldn't stay to celebrate her 'freedom' due to some domestic probs which forced me to go home soon. But before that, we went to a fashion show in Mulia Hotel, Jakarta. What's nice? Traffic! 

The shitty traffic, however, allowed us to talk more and had a silly kind of fun moments. Some things just happened twisted. It was the happiest traffic jam experience.

This is...her playlist!


Good luck with your new phase of career life, Agnes!



... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...

Monday, March 4, 2013

The Cooking Continues...

Remember I wrote a blogspot two days ago about cooking plan? Well, I didn't do it on Friday nite. I ended up receiving a call from an old friend. Which meant... 'long-time-no-see friend' and 'a friend who is kinda old enough, hmph, older than me'. No offense.

What did I eat? I ate my ready salad I bought at FoodHall. It's potato, smoked beef and cheese with the toppings! I also bought my mom one, but it's more to vegetables. As I don't eat vegetables, so potato it is. Yet, 2am in the morning, I watched AFC and cooked myself Udon! I won't never get bored having Udon everyday in my life. Sadly, no tempura involved.

Shopping the ingredients at FoodHall was nice. I bought smoked beef, just in case my niece misses my yummy creamy Fetucinne with smoked beef. People there, I assumed, very friendly and helpful. They were willing to answer all my detail questions.


They helped me looking for salmon. But for this salmon case, it's rather distinguished. I call it so, because it's kinda complicated. They have two kinds of salmon sold in different spots. One is near the sushi thingy, and it's Tasmanian salmon. You can eat it raw, like for making sashimi, or grilled. The guy told me if you want to grill it, choose the back of the fish as it has less fat. Or with more fat, choose the stomach part.

On the other part, they sell Salmon near the other fishy and prawns! That one is Norwegian Salmon that you can't eat raw and is specialized for grill. I already bought the first Tasmanian. The guy even packed it with ice, I said yes, so couldn't just throw it away. That's not nice! Eventually, I bought this one also.

Remember my recipe for Grilled Salmon with Greek Yogurt? That salmon buddies go for it.

As for the prawns for Shrimp Garlic Recipe from foodwishes.com, I didn't get any problem except I bought very small portion. I didn't know how much I might need it. So, I told the other guy who taught me the difference between the Tasmanian and Norwegian salmon, "I want 20!" It turned out only a few. I moved to Ranch Market and found (seemed-to-be preserved) Salmon filled that less cheaper. D'Oh! That's ok!

I cooked it on Saturday nite. 9pm. Late for cooking, but who cares? As long as I have the whole kitchen for me! As the prawns are only these few... I cooked with half recipe. I did it!

My Garlic Shrimp!

I didn't use Red Pepper flakes as it's written in the recipe, coz when I was shopping, I thought I still had some. But the truth was... none left. So, I used substitute, which was black pepper! The caper brine I bought at Ranch Market was great! As for the Italian parsley, I didn't find it, so I choose basil. Not too much. I don't eat vegetables. My mom initially suggested to use lettuce, but the smell won't blend nicely. So, basil it is...

My cook, based my own review, the butter was too much. I should choose my Elle et Vire butter. But the Orchard butter was left opened so I chose it. Not so good. The smell wasn't pretty! And, a bit too much... Sad.


Back to Grilled Salmon with Greek Yogurt recipe.... This, I cooked it just now!

Attention! I couldn't find any Greek Yogurt. So there, in Ranch Market, I googled with my smartphone, that Mayonnaise could be a good substitute. Not great, but good. But, I was quite lucky for the fresh Dill. Didn't find the fresh one, except this...



And I can also find the Tortilla wrap!


Also this!
Three new friends from the Disney Egg Chocolate! Just an intermezzo...

I also made half-recipe, using the Norwegian Salmon. With extra pepper of course! And as the fillet was too small and the wrap was kinda too big. I'll cut half, again!

So, these two days...it's all about dividing into half.

And, I'm going to put some lettuce!

You know why I'm so excited?! This was my very first cooking with marinade process... Yeah! So below is the picture of all the ingredients used for marinade. Before and after combined. With extra pepper, of course.

Before and After ^^

Then, spreading it to the whole salmon fillets....
Ta-daaa....

Oh, I'm a happy creature!

On the recipe, it was told to keep the marinade in the fridge for one hour, but as the situation in the kitchen not so supportive (my mom was using the kitchen and my sis was eating there), I let it for another hour...  Here's a pic, right away from the fridge. I can guarantee: it's cold!



I grilled them with indoor kitchen. I don't have BBQ grill or bla-bla-bla. Just use my pan and grill. No oil involved. Once it's done, I put my lettuce to half-cut Tortilla wrap, put the mayonnaise sauce and the salmon! Say, 'Yay!'

This time, the grilled salmon episode of my life made me nervous. My mom wanted to try it, so it should be tasty. She told me that the grilled salmon was less spiced. Could be, the salmon should be sliced thinner, therefore the spices in marinade process will be absorbed better.

Anyway...
My Grilled Salmon Wrap!


... what happens in my bedroom, stays in my bedroom...