Saturday, August 30, 2008

Forever in Transition

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Current Mood: Hanging in there

Current Song: Khwaja mere Khwaja (Movie: Jodha Akbar, Language: Hindi)

Well, after having a week where everything hit me like a ton of bricks, I've discovered many many things about myself. I think my generation will forever be in transition in some ways. For one, I feel like I will always be "In transit". Most of you will already be aware that I'm somewhat of a middle-grounder in most ways. For one, I'm a cuspian, and a tough one at that. Having to mix fire and earth is certainly an interesting challenge. Parts of me want to charge ahead and fly off with ideas, but the earthen part of me always likes to micromanage, look at every detail and move deliberately. Sometimes I find myself in a right pickle because I won't let myself move ahead. There's one middle ground for you.

The second middle ground as I quietly discovered this week is that I'm a Type A and Type B personality mix. I'm a workaholic. I love nothing better than a 50 hour week to keep me going. When i have to sit around for this long with nothing to do, I slowly start to lose my mind, and get very lethargic and depressed. I can have the eternal patience of a saint with some people (ask some of my more emotional friends), and I can be quick on my feet in a get-crap-done kind of way. I'm not sure why, but somehow I've been assigned to be forever in transition. I'm never "there" with nowhere to go. There's always a next step.

God certainly decided to play this one up with me didn't he? Let's confuse her, I'm sure he said to everyone. I find my path in life will likely be cumulative in the end. I'll somehow have to fuse all of the outliers together to make my own destiny. It's going to be an interesting journey. It's funny that when you have so much time to think, you come up with all of these things.

I'm not directionless, I just have a long way to go in one direction. But afterall it's really always the journey that counts right?
Okay, it's freezing cold, so i'm going to go hang out somewhere warm, I think. Ciao for niao!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Rag Tag Reunions

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Current Mood: Satiated

Current Song: Strawberry Swing by Coldplay (not my favourite, but Chris Martin makes up for it!)

Life after grad school has been very empty I have to say. The initial excitement of having accomplished something is finally wearing down and now I feel like I have nothing. I'm sure that the feeling will fade soon, but I was really looking forward to the heavens parting and some kind of fanfare (none of which seems to have happened. Where is my damn party!). In any case, I'm slowly getting used to it, but I shan't make a habit of it, because i've got to get on with it really at this point.

I also seem to be busy as usual, without meaning to be. This week seems very cramped up with things that I have to get done all over the place. You think there would be some respite. I have decided to take it easy next week and settle into a routine of sorts. It's been a bit sporadic and frankly a bit stressful still. Or perhaps the stress is in not having enough stress. All you Type A's know what I'm talking about right?

I just got back from a rag tag reunion of cousins from the mother's side. We've never had a free-standing dinner with no parental units in sight. I was a bit apprehensive about going, but it was a lot of fun. Not because I don't like my cousins (I like them all), but because we're generally a bunch of people who are vastly different. Let's just say you wouldn't stick us in the same social groups in high school: We've got jocks, intellectuals, punks, student body president-types. It's very ecclectic for a family where all the parents are creepily alike. Oh well. For now it's a dynamic that works. Another reason growing up is good. Plus potato thins at Boston Pizza are worth the trip alone!

Anyway, i feel like I have lot to do tomorrow. Not sure why. But that'll be it. I shall blog again soon. I'm sure there's exciting things coming up. Talk soon all!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Cosmic Laughs

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Current Mood: sigh. weird actually. perhaps it's the sore throat

Current Song: Hip Hop is Dead by Nas

It already feels like it's been a long week and it's only tuesday. Oh well. I guess that's alright. Eventful weekend with family dinner. Also watched Dark Knight on sunday. Great movie! Very psychologically unsettling, and much more gritty than any of the past Batman movies. The character of Joker and Two-Face were both amazingly portrayed. Joker was very different from the one played by Jack Nicholson back in the day, less farce, more killer. Interesting movie, and highly recommended.

Yesterday was the beginning of the new season for The Hills, so my thesis-emptied life finally feels like it's got some meaning. It's going to be an interesting season I tells ya. If I ever move away to some remote part of the world for work, I think I'll miss reality TV the most (aside from family of course).

Also, I got home from coffee with a friend (who I appreciate more and more everytime we meet up...details to be spared at present time), and I watched some horrible show called "Millionaire Matchmaker". Basically it's about a woman who matches up trophy wives with millionaire men who were once awkward around women but now have the money so they can afford to be awkward. One guy yesterday flew his date to Vegas and then proposed to her...on the first date! Who does that?! Apparently in Judaism there is the concept of soul mates. No matter what race, age, colour etc, people can meet someone and know right away that's the person made for them: It's called a Bashert. And people are compelled to find theirs.
I'm personally starting to think that this whole pairing of men and women as mates is a giant farce, a big cosmic joke. Seriously, who puts two completely different creatures on the same earth? sheesh. I'm seriously waiting to be proved wrong here.

Anyway, must go do some things. Off to a violin recital of a highschool friend tonite. Will report soon! adios tacos!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Applying for What?!

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Current Mood: Sneezy (I haven't fully recovered from my cold, I don't think)

Current Song: 12:59 Lullaby by Bedouin Soundclash

Wowee! I handed in my thesis! Everyone congratulate me! We had a bit of trouble with the table of contents which went slightly wonky, but it's all good. After I handed'er in, we went to Jericho Beach for drinks, munchies and sunshine. It was an absolutely ideal day. Cannot complain one bit about it. There weren't many people on the beach. Who goes on a monday afternoon except for kindergartners and seniors. It feels nice to have accomplished yet another thing, but I always get a bit introspective afterwards as I plan my next moves. I wonder where I'll be next.

It's been one of those rocky years for me, a la 2006, where the good is exceptionally good and the bad, is exceptionally bad too. But mostly I think as I grow up, I grow into who I really am as a person and pretty much each day is a blessing. We often forget how lucky we are to be alive and well and we have to take advantage of the fact that we've got it made in so many ways. I guess being in international development and realising that some people face the perilous task of going to get potable water whilst avoiding landmines really puts things into perspective as I sit here rather comfortably. What a way. I wish more people would consider this as we whine about gas prices and how hot it is, and how our bathing suits need to be replaced.

Ooh! I applied for graduation this morning. Feel a bit ill. I will be walking the stage...again! I wonder if I get a funny hat this time or whether I'm going to have to wait until the doctorate. hmmmm. interesting prospects. I'm asking my mum and sister for a new SLR camera for graduation instead of jewellry so I can take up some photography. It would be nice to have that experience if I travel (which I plan to do). Any suggestions on good types of cameras would be appreciated. Digital preferred. Must do research on it!

Alright, I'm going to drag my groggy ass out for a run on a gorgeous summer day. I shall report back soon! Adios Nachos!

PS: just to make you jealous, wherever in the world you are, a shot of downtown vancouver from Jericho Beach yesterday

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Everything I Know About Life, I Learned in Choir

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Current Mood: Illuminated

Current Song: A ghazal, very fittingly

I am back from a whirlwind trip to Montreal and Ottawa with the Canadian Ismaili Muslim Youth Choir. This is probably one of my favourite trips in the last few years. It was completely exhausting, at times frustrating and challenging, but well worth it! We went to bed no earlier than half past one on most days, and were due down for breakfast no later than 9 or 10 AM on most days. The schedule was as follows: sing, eat, sing, eat, sing, eat...well...you get the point.

Favourite Highlights:

Montreal: Oreo Cheesecake at D'Luxe Patisserie, the juicebar in the shape of a giant orange across the hotel, taking the Via Rail to Ottawa

Ottawa: Visiting the Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat, visiting the Centre for Pluralism, Singing at Centrepointe theatre again (home of Yaqzan) and the amazing hospitality, the Honeymoon Suite that I had to share with a fellow soprano...picture below.
Overall: Singing and working with HJ, meeting some amazingly talented singers from across Canada and of course spending some time elsewhere doing what I love to do.
Things I learned this trip:

I need a new camera and some photography lessons so my pictures don't suck so badly

I need to learn french, because it's cool and functional

I'm moving to Ottawa at some point in my life

I really should never stop singing because it's very hard to start again.

I had better improve my sight-reading skills or else...

I am officially old because some of the people on the tour were born in the 90's. Imagine!

There is nothing wrong with checking in online...in fact it's probably a lot faster and easier.

Vancouver will always be home
I am not eating a donair or any kind of meat on a stick for the next six to twelve months...
See some pics belowThis was our honeymoon suite bedroom in Ottawa (they ran out of doubles at the hotel...some boys didn't even get a roll out bed). Obviously invented by a dude because the Jacuzzi and the bedroom were not really separated. We even had bathrobes, champaigne glasses and one of those fancy ice buckets...Other highlights were the roll out bed in couch and the sliding door that opened right out into the parking lot. I know what you're thinking...classy joint...right?

This is the Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat building that is being built on Sussex Drive in Ottawa. The Atrium is made of rock crystal and this whole compound will be home to the residences of the Aga Khan and visiting dignitaries as well as insitutional offices. Also included inside is a charbagh (4 garden) area open to the public and resource centres etc. The building is nearing completion and should be open late this year. You can learn more about it at http://www.theismaili.org/


And of course, a shot of the sunset on the way home. How lovely...

Anyway...it is technically time to get up and do some putting away of things. I shall blog again soon-ish....ciao for niao!