Thursday, December 22, 2011

One or Two Things About Me

I was born in the second largest city in East Java called Malang in September 1984. From my birth certificate, I learned that I first came into this world on Friday at 5.45am. Then, the sun just rose and the sky was reddish so my late maternal Grandfather named me (Xia) which means red clouds. My Mom was in labour for almost 24 hours when she was about to deliver me. Since my Dad was away, a couple of close neighbours sent my Mom to the maternity hospital. 

My home town was famous for its cooling weather, less traffic jam and apples. I must sadly announce that it's no longer cold and has heavy traffic jam in day and night. Malang apples, however, remain popular among Indonesians. Since living abroad, I try my best to visit my home town minimum twice a year. I don’t want my senile Grandma at home to forget my face if she does not see me so often.

I am the eldest child. I am my parents' confidante, I guess. I have one younger sister and one younger brother. I used to be so in love with this guy. I still love my little brother but the way I express my love to him is different now. Since I have my husband, I am not that obsessed with him anymore.

I went to a Kindergarten near my house when I was 3. Lily, my best friend, was with me in the first year of Kindergarten until her parents moved her to St. Joseph Kindergarten. After she moved to different Kindergarten, I think I was kind of lost for a while. 

St. Joseph College, my almamater, was known as the best private school in town, famous for its disciplinary methods in educating students and the never ending home works and tests. Some people say, you are confirmed a nerd when you study there. My parents put me in St. Joseph for my primary, junior and senior high schools. In total, I spent 12 years in this Catholic school. 

I cried in the first three days of primary school. My Dad had to wait outside my class room until 9am for the first three days because I cried a lot. I got zero mark for the first test's result in my primary one simply because I did not answer any of the questions that the teacher asked. I copied the teacher's questions including the blank space (for answers) from the blackboard onto my test book but hesitated whether I should fill the empty space with something too. In the end, I left all the empty spaces blank. My Mom who spent hours in teaching me the chapter for my first test the night before was not angry with my zero mark.

I did not do very well during primary school especially when it came to Mathematics. I was always in the bottom list and my teacher often called my parents to school to discuss my academic performance. For 6 years, my Dad was always furious with my periodic primary school reports.

I first learned English when I was 12. In the beginning, I had major confusions in pairing he/she/it with is, I with am and they with are.

Academically, I became better when I was in junior and senior schools. Heaven wonders but I was in the top 10 of my class in almost every year after primary school. My parents started to be proud of me and I grew myself so much self-confidence after that. 

I sucked big time at subjects involving numbers and physical activities like sports. But, I excelled at subjects which relied much on my memorizing ability. 

I picked up some private music lessons like Organ and Violin when I was 13. I won some local Organ competitions twice and the days when I brought the trophies home were probably two of the best days of my life. I stopped learning them when I moved to Surabaya.

My star was apparently still bright during my university years in Surabaya. I majored in International Business Management, managed to get a scholarship to pursue my Double Degree in Amsterdam and finally, graduated Cum Laude. I met a lot of good friends during my university years and still virtually keep in touch with some of them until this very day.

became a Christian in 2006 but I seldom go to Church. When I was small, I blamed Doraemon show on TV for me skipping the Sunday school. The timing of Doraemon Show on TV at 8am every Sunday coincided the commencement of the weekly Sunday school. I chose Doraemon over Sunday school. These days, I guess I was too hooked with the smell of my pillow hence I have serious problem in waking up early on weekends. 

Every year, I never failed to exchange Christmas cards with my best friend, Lily, until SMSes replaced the function of snail mail for greeting Merry Christmas and Happy New Year in cheaper and faster fashion. Her Christmas wishes to me since the past 15 years never changed. She hopes I could go to Church on Sunday more diligently. 

I have read the whole Bible before I decided to convert to Christian.

I cannot lead prayers in public. 

After Amsterdam, I found myself quite useless in Indonesia since I could not find the job I wanted and good salary which I could partially give back to my parents. So, I braved myself to go to Singapore to find a job. My savings then was only enough to buy a one way ticket to Singapore and cover my basic living costs for a month. I had no idea on how to pay my air ticket back to Indonesia if I was unable to secure a job within a month or so. I lived with some new helpful Indonesian friends in Singapore during my stay there. No rent was paid but I shared with them their utilities bills. In the end, I got my first job after staying in Singapore for 40 days. God was good.

I worked in Singapore as Conference Producer for almost 4 years. Every time, I told myself that I wanted to quit the Conference industry because it's so stressful and hectic but I never actually did. After resigning from my first job, I moved to another job with the pretty much same role as the previous one. Until now, I guess I can't be too far from Conference industry. On the bright side, this job has given me the opportunities to travel to some big cities in Asia and meet a lot of great people along the way. I am grateful for this.

I took some on and off Mandarin lessons since I was small and had two compulsory semesters in Business Mandarin during my university years. I used to be able to read, remember and write in Mandarin very well but could not speak in proper Mandarin intonation. Like any other Chinese Indonesians bred in Java, some of our Mandarin has Javanese accent and I think other Chinese in other parts of the world may encounter some difficulties in fully understanding us.

After I married my husband, I moved to Malaysia in early of 2011. After almost a year being forced in a Mandarin speaking environment, I can converse in Mandarin now. My Mandarin is not so fantastic yet but at least now I can communicate with my husband, Mom-in-Law, some aunties, nephews and nieces in Mandarin. My Cantonese still revolves around "Lei Hou Mou?", "Fei Gei Ciong" and "Lei Meng Bak Mou?"

I can't really drink alcohol and do not gamble nor smoke. I am proud of this lifestyle of mine.

I hate noise and loud music so I don't do clubbing, partying and such.

I am not a daredevil. I have acrophobia. Even the smallest roller coaster freaks me out.

I am not a sporty girl. Do not expect too much from me on sport activities invitations. Once upon a time in Singapore, I put up with my vigorous swimming regime for almost one year because I desperately wanted to shed some weights. 

I used to be a shopping addict when I was in Singapore. My weakness points were sweet little dresses, cosmetics and body care products.

I like boy bands and hate rock music to the core. My first cassette I ever bought was Michael Bolton's album. I think I was too young for his songs but not sure why I bought his album, to begin with. When I was in my first year of junior high school, I bought Backstreet Boys’ first album and claimed that as my first song album ever purchased as I was too embarrassed with Michael Bolton's. My sister used to tease me a lot about this.

I tried to be a vegetarian when I was in the final year of high school but it only lasted for three months. My Dad disliked me being a vegetarian and thought I just joined some weird cult with my friends. Moreover, I became very moody and emotionally tortured because I could not eat all the meaty stuff that I liked. In short, I quit it and told myself that every diet is healthy as long as I eat in moderation.

Technically, I have lived away from my family since I was 17. 

I was a temperamental teenager (but thankfully, not that rebellious kind) and I guess am a temperamental wife too. *Pity my husband*

I have soft spots on old folks so I am extra patient and gentle to my Grandmas and other old people above 65 years old.

I fell in love with baking when I was 12. I keep it as a hobby.

I am green fanatic. I am passionate with anything in green colour. Not green snakes, please.

I hate ginger when cooked as dishes.

I hate white radish. Its smell makes me want to vomit.

I do not really like driving that much. One of the reasons that I chose Singapore to live was its established public transports.

I used to read a lot. I read novels. I have hundreds of Japanese manga which my parents bought for me when I was teenager. Now, I read once in a blue moon. I surf the net.

I don't really keep pets. I am not quite a pet lover. I had three dogs before. I loved them when they were puppies but was afraid of them when they became dogs. But I am confident that I can manage to keep some fish in aquarium.

Hmm, what else?

1 comment:

  1. Being mix, I am NOT really good at both language, especially Chinese.. I can understand but still there are some words I can't understand in Chinese :)


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