plunged into 4 days of medicamp on returning, totally crashed on the first night: fell asleep countless times on the wooden boardwalk leading to the mangrove at pasir ris park. thank you leonard and jerry and teo kok ann for walking the ogs in for me. medicamp was otherwise nicely slow-moving with lotsa time for bonding. hope the m1s found it helluva fun as well!
well, goldiRawks! i havent quite got to know my og, sorry guys. looking fwd to spending a bit more time with them! they are a fun bunch to be with, always full of ideas to keep themselves occupied! (capts ball! hahaha.) goldilocks runs on autopilot, my fellow ogls whom i am most glad to get to know better, say.
after mass games at sentosa on friday, a circle of trust was formed at aria, and story-telling continued on at gluttons bay. seemy ugly friends
thursday saw flrball medness with an overwhelming response fm the m1s. it was chaos initially, but things got better as the evening wore on. oh my: somebody's bday present is going to be a flrball stick, sweet!
plus float, blading, movies. i realise that it's been all abt the meddies for the past 2 months.
we can count!
oh caught up 3f one day. welcome home, everybuddy. (bye bean! again.) oh mama! the new wangning is killer! was great to finally see shifeng and baobao after one year too. we need more catch-ups.
happy bday, jen. (29th july)
iluuuuu. may the following year be filled with magical moments. i will miss you!
somehow, there was a tinge of blue last night, i hope it all blows away!
finished jon strange and mr norrell. i like. :).
since we took over 2,000 photos in turkey..
library@ephesus. ephesus was gorgeous. photos cant quite do justice to the majesty of the ancient ruins we visited.
theatre at pergammon
lights and other handicraft at the grand bazaar, istanbul
hon's semit (bread) man. in istanbul. outside the grand palace which holds a 64 (if i remember right) carat diamond.
long haired dude at pamukkale
buddy and babe
buddy at pamukkale. my bestest shot. eugene was often not in the photos, cos he was the pro photographer, with his nikon. (pamukkale = cotton castle. all the white is limestone!)
the bird lady. she sells ingeniously designed clay birds that warble. thank you rous, for the two u bought me at the hierapolis for fear tt i wld get accousted after having shown interest (ok i was fascinated) in them.
mega jumps by rouan and joel at the salt lake. oh mama. that place was Lovely.
a flash of tummy
(joel) getting woozy on nagile (sheesha) in the cheeriest chill out place ever. in istanbul. see top student poh hiong blow billows of smoke! well, i had a good time chasing the dragon. shant post that photo. ;)
the seeing tree. those blue eyes are ubiquitous. very turkish, very pretty.
colin's turk family. offered us tourists chai, so very friendly.
burglar alarm! monkeying around in the hotel in bolu, (honey heaven) our first stop.
table tennis turned out to be the game for R&R sessions. (the swimming pools were Freezing cold! so cold the first time we jumped in i got my breath knocked out of me and i jumped back out before re-entering aft much persuasion, rouan cursed swore and shrieked but bravely stayed in there, colin shrieked like.. (insert 'ok' hand signal here) you get the idea.)
merhaba. turkey was cok guzel. (very beautiful/yummy/good/etc) there, our black hair yellow skin and small eyes get a lot of stares, friendly ones, as well as waves, hugs and kisses. oh yes, turks are beautiful. cok yakisiklisin! all the gorgeous boys/men tripped into the Sex Faerie's warm embrace though, boohoo. and the gorgeous women (and men, not necessarily turkish -anyeonghasaeyo!) into the Sex God's.
rou's man, yasa. pottery prince.
the colours of istanbul
istanbul was so colourful! cappadocia, pamukkale, camukkale, were all pretty as well, each with its own flavour. the long bus rides (longest = 10 hours. the pitstop at the salt lake was incredible. [that was after i begged for a toilet stop because willing every dark patch of grass in the distance to be the lake proved futile and my bladder was Screaming. anyway, the salt lake is a dazzling WHITE.]) saw mountains rise and fall, saw undulating land flatten to browned grass and fields of gold and rivers and lakes. cows+sheep+some crops speck the vast lands. and movie sets (star wars) popped up on some days.
have taken with me stories from every place, beautiful/funny/happy/awe-inspiring stories+sights+sounds+feelings. in particular, two personal experiences were so beautiful they beggar description. but i will try:
on the first morning in cappadocia, i woke up at 0530 as light flooded my room. set off for a run seeing that there was plenty of time before breakfast. (aiyah, this was the one and only morning i attempted to go running la.) took one right turn, then a left, for the residential area near Dinler Hotel. ran past a bunch of wild dogs lazing by the road, but thought little of them, as i was more enthralled by an old man with a crumpled face riding a donkey cart past me. there was no one else up and about at that hour, in that area. it wasnt long before i decided tt the cold air stabbing my lungs was too much, and that i ought to head back before i froze my nose off. made a u-turn. then. i. saw. 3 dogs sitting in the road ahead. and several others flanking the sides of the road. the killer: i turned around, and there were 3 other dogs behind. oh mama! i panicked and ran harder, but the 3 dogs in front didnt budge, and the latter 3 caught up without much effort. one of them was clearly the leader of the pack: huge, long-haired, and Snarling. with much bravery (or rather, lack of choice) i stopped short, stuck my hand out towards that monster's (haha) nose and shouted with as much conviction as possible: NO!! that foolhardy shout must have stunned the dogs momentarily, and i took that chance to scramble out of the way and pounded uphill all the while imagining that the entire pack must have been at my heels. made it to the main road, thank god. and then back to safe haven of dinler where colin and buddy had just woken up. needless to say, i got jacked the whole day, by Sibel (our funky guide) and others.
but wait, this isnt the priceless moment that i thought was cok guzel! (though it sure is priceless too.)
nerves settled after a shower, i headed out for a walk with buddy (security) with his trusty nikon in tow. saw a peasant woman carrying a gerrycan and asked if we could take a photo of her. she directed us to a caravan parked behind some bushes, where 2 middle-aged men and 2 other women were getting down to breakfast, boiling water over a fire. they sat us down on stools and offered us chai. the language barrier was almost impenetrable; we passed Lonely Planet to and fro, pointing out words that barely came close to what we wanted to express. for want of conversation, buddy actually asked how much the chai was! bish! hahaha. wished so much that we had studied the turkish language a little before we went over. in any case, we parted with hearts bursting with goodness, and their address to which we promised to forward photos we had taken, and with a promise that we would be back yokun (tomorrow). got Sibel to translate a speech of thanks for us, but when we returned to the campsite later, all that remained of the travelling party was an abandoned tomato. x-fingers that they came back to read the scruffy letter we stuck under a stone. those two glasses of chai were the bestest tasting, most warming tea i had this whole trip, i swear.
had another run-in with a local in canakkale/kusadasi when we were snorkeling in the cold frigid water (good viz but yuks! the seabed was pebbly and chockfull of grass. and a few sea urchins.) this oldish man called to us while waving smth in his hand. slightly suspicious, yet impossibly curious, we all ventured closer to his boat and realised that he'd wanted to give us these huge shells. sulaiman (the boatman) invited us up his small smelly boat and we happily scrambled on, out of the cold (he lent buddy his jacket as buddy was shivering badly!) into the warmth of hospitality. sulaiman then brought us for a tour of the beachline. the splutter of the engine roaring in our ears, cold breeze in our faces, taking in the sights of the coast from an impossible perspective, was simply Amazing. we were allowed to steer the boat back to the start point, and there we learnt how sulaiman got on and off land without getting too wet. ingenuity. left him with hugs and kisses and cigarettes (what do turks think of us leaving presents? we do not mean them as payment for kindness!) (what will become of him when he gets older?) and a promise to send him photos as well.
old man and the sea
all in all, chapter one: turkey was a good trip. hoorah.
chapter two: thailand was anti-climatic. oh but itkz (itkz and ai joined us in bkk for shopping.) got to drive us around (lit: one round) in a taxi!
to remember just happy memories of the days i spent with the big bunch of people: meddies baorong, ra, eugene-buddy, colin, bra and joel plus two associates nafiz and inna, and the two australian malaysian 'J's - jerry and jenny, and Sibel, and Ismail. thank you, all you happyfying people, for the good company. sini saviyorum.
ismael and bear
off to turkey, will be back in two weeks' time, for medicamp.
will go with an open heart, mind, and eyes.
..is sitting on a straw mat by the beach, where the balmy breeze carries away yummy bbq smells, listening to the fire spit and crackle in beat with mat/club music, watching ahmad's slick (move, bitch, move) moves, licking shiok chilli (wah biang, ahmad's stingray is todiefor!!) off fingers, chatting/laughing in three-quarter-darkness (sizzling prawns illuminated by mag-woman's trusty handphone) with the love-club-and-assoc-member-minus-maulanar-:'(-plus-wenjian.
and so assoc member ahmad must be proclaimed KING. king of the kampung. i kowtow. he took care of every single little detail, from the tent, the home-made bbq pit, foodgloriousfood, to the most intricate rhyming clues bringing ivan hongyi on his little birthday adventure trail to ecp. happy bday, ivan!! :)
touched, very, by what one brother will do for another. obs, woosh.
lying by the sea, under stars, chatting till we fell asleep was how we spent most of the 8 nights camping out in the open, getting frozen stiff by the salty breeze. words found themselves, as did kindred spirits.