Archive | May 2012

May the odds ever be in your favour

Well , I’ve officially completed the Hunger Games trilogy today . Everytime I finished a book , I will feel this sense of loss – like I’ve just lost a really awesome and good friend . Similarly , after reading all 3 books , I’ve felt this loss too . Only , this 3 books really impacted and affected me so much . And the worst part , I can’t even put a finger as to why this series had impacted me so much . Perhaps I should try and reason it out …..

DISCLAIMER : To those who are not a big fan of spoilers , I suggest you shouldn’t read on . Because to reason it out and to tell you guys honestly how I feel , I might need to say what happened in the book , especially the last book 🙂 So , no hard feelings if you guys decide to click the little cross button at the top right hand corner of the page 😀

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Well , Mockingjay was probably the saddest book I’ve ever read so far and I was moved to tears a couple of times . Now , I’m the kind of person who doesn’t really get moved to tears that easily when reading books . I guess it’s because most of the books I picked up had happy endings instead . Hence , I don’t usually cry when I read , but this time , it’s different . Of course , it wasn’t those long flowing sobs . It’s just feeling tears welling up , threatening to spill onto your cheeks and when your voice just gets a little bit thicker . So , of course , it’s definitely a big deal for me . Their sad scenes , such as reading how Peeta changed under the hands of the merciless and philistine Capitol authorities , reading how Finnick (whom I’ve gotten to love too due to his humour) and Prim died , how Katniss’s mother wasn’t the same again and abandoned her to fend for herself in District 12 . How they suffered under the hands of President Snow and the Peacekeepers from the Capitol – even after the war was over . Their gory scenes , such as reading how Katniss had to survive 24 needles jabbing at the ribs (which btw , made all my limbs wobbly and made me cringe) and reading how her skin flaked off to her shirts , how blood clots formed because her artificial skin was damaged . Their horrors at human rights scenes which left me shocked . The cruelty and draconian measures the Capitol and President Coin did to stop the rebels and end the war and also how they would not hesitate to have mass public executions and the torture devices they used to torture Peeta . All these just left a deep image in my heart . It is a fiction book , no doubt , but I just can’t help getting reminded how their life was similar to those living in totalitarian regimes . (I’ve mentioned this before) The ending was a happy ending – Peeta got back to normal and Katniss and Peeta ended up getting together and being married . I never liked Gale from the start and I was glad that he was gone – off to another district , not dead . (Sorries to all the Gale lovers , but I just don’t fancy him so much compared to Peeta and Finnick) They were finally together , just like how I wanted them to be right from the start . But amidst those happy endings , I know they’ll never be the same again . Because they went through so much , so much that it changed them entirely . And when they made the book as a tribute to those who had died in the Hunger Games or during the war , it’s just so sad . And I felt actual sympathy for them because whatever it was , they won’t be able to forget those dark memories . It’ll continue to haunt them – even after having children . However , the saddest part is that they have to keep on living . I guess the good thing is that they’re learning to survive it together , having each other by their side . However , deep down , they may not be able to feel happy ever again .

“Peeta and I grow back together. There are still moments when he clutches the back of a chair and hangs on until the flashbacks are over. I wake screaming of nightmares of mutts and lost children. But his arms are there to comfort me. That’s what I need to survive is not Gale’s fire, kindled with rage and hatred. I have plenty of fire myself. What I need is the dandelion in the spring. The bright yellow that means rebirth instead of destruction. The promise that life can go on, no matter how bad our losses. That it can be good again. And only Peeta can give me that.

So after, when he whispers, “You love me. Real or not real?”

I tell him, “Real.”

The grandmother by the cottage house

It was in those woods where they trudged uphill , turned left , turned right and went downhill . They were overwhelmed with fatigue and a sheen of sweat glistened on their foreheads . They were just merely capable of putting one foot in front of the other , in the hopes that they will encounter something else other than the greenery and the amber trunks the trees were gifted with . It was no doubt they were lost in the wilderness of the forest , but instead of being sullen and petulant , they felt a strange sense of tranquility . A strange sense of serenity in which they could not comprehend . Perhaps it was because the woods provided the haven for them to escape the flurry of activities in the city , where the asphalt of roads threatened to choke them . Yes , they felt they could just collapse on the forest floor and sleep there forever , but in a way , they felt relieved to have chosen the wilderness the woods had to offer for their vacation . It provided them a whole new perspective to life and made them see the other side of the earth . The side they wished they lived in .

Suddenly , they saw a thin ray of sunlight penetrating through the thick canopy of leaves . As if engulfed with renewed energy they didn’t knew had it in them , they ran towards the sunlight hoping to encounter someone whom they could seek help to . No doubt the woods were really seductive but they had to seek help should they even wished to stay alive .

Out they were in the open air . Everywhere , fields of rich lust green grass laid beneath their worn out soles . The meadow was filled with flowers of different sorts – roses , chrysanthemums , lillies , daisies that were in full bloom , in full spring . They were greeted with a kaleidoscope of colours and the scenery just took their breath away . And suddenly they saw it . An old cottage house just sitting in the middle of the field .

-To be continued- 

What will matter is your character

 

Ready or not, someday it will all come to an end. There will be no more sunrises, no minutes, hours or days. All the thing you collected, whether treasured or forgotten, will pass to someone else.

Your wealth, fame and temporal power will shrivel to irrelevance. It will not matter what you owned or what you were owed. Your grudges, resentments, frustrations and jealousy will finally disappear.

So, too your hopes, ambitions, plans and to-do lists will expire. The wins and losses that once seemed so important will fade away. It won’t matter where you came from.

It won’t matter whether you were beautiful or brilliant. Even your gender and skin colour will be irrelevant. So what will matter?

What will matter is not what you bought, but what you built. Not what you got, but what you gave.

What will matter is not your success, but your significance.

What will matter is not what you learned, but what you taught.

What will matter is every act of integrity, compassion, courage or sacrifice that enriched, empowered or encourage others to emulate your example.

What will matter is not your competence, but your character.

What will matter is not how many people you knew, but how many will feel a lasting loss when you’re gone.

What will matter is not your memories, but the memories that live on in those who loved you.

What will matter is how long you will be remembered.

Live a life that matters doesn’t happen by accident

It happens by choice.

~Project Spirituality

And I absolutely love this quote . When I read this , I was immediately inspired by it and believe it or not , I immediately rushed to my computer and typed it out here . I believe everyone of you wonderful readers of mine should read this quote . I know it’s kinda lengthy , but trust me , once you had finished reading it , something will stir inside you .

Thank you so very much Belle for the lovely card with a really beautiful and heartwarming message . Every single time , I’d feel the ends of my lips curving up when I read your messages . It never fails to light up my day . Also , thank you so much for the beautiful locket and the foolscap pad . True that – “Who needs friends when you’ve got books.” I really love it and I really love you 🙂 Hehehe . Stay happy always 🙂 Nothing beats having an awesome message to read after the mind-boggling MT Os .

Oh oh , I’m sure you guys noticed the Suzanne Collins book . If you guys did not , I don’t blame you because the card is just so beautiful and picturesque that it draws your attention away from everything else isn’t it ? Hahahaha . But yeahs , I’ve started reading MOCKINGJAY – the 3rd book of the HG trilogy 😀

MT Os was erm o_O I leave it up to you guys to decipher what I mean by that emoticon . LOLOL . Paper 1 was do-able . Paper 2 was a bit tricky . I’m a bit skeptical of getting my A1 now . Oh wells , let’s just see yeahs ? Hope for the best , cause that’s what I always do 😀

Vision

Zen monks, when they want to meditate, sit before a rock. “Now I’ll wait until it grows a little rock,” they think.

The master said, “Everything around us is constantly changing. Everyday, the Sun illuminates a new world. What we call routine is full of new opportunities, but we do not see that everyday is different from before. Today, somewhere, a treasure awaits. It may be a little smile, it can be a great achievement, whatever. Life is full of large and small miracles. Nothing is boring, because everything is constantly changing. The trouble is not in the world, but in how we view the world.”

~Maktub , Paulo Coelho

My very own survival kit

Hello World !

Here’s my very own life lessons , ones which I’ve learnt over these past few years .

  • Life is beatiful , filled with mysteries and enchantment . Instead of hating it , embrace it . You only live once . Choose how you want to live it .
  • Everything that is occuring to us , is happening to us , happens for a reason .
  • Don’t be afraid to dream . Dare to dream for dreamers are the ones who end up being successful in life . The successful people in life are those who never stopped chasing after their dreams , the ones who are determined to go after them and the ones who are willing to work hard for it .
  • There’s no easy way out in life . Everything has a price to pay . Pursuing your own interests has a price to pay . Reaching your dreams has a price to pay . There’s only one way you can be the person you want to be , and that is to work as hard as you can .
  • Personality is what makes a person attractive . Not the physical appearance .
  • People are going to hurt you along the way . People are going to backstab you and repay you with bad deeds . But what’s important is you ought to treat these people as motivations for you to move on . They’re the ones helping you to become stronger and helping you to develop something called TOLERANCE .
  • Happiness is what makes the world go round , no doubt .
  • Optimism will make you wise . Of course , no one can be happy everyday . Even the most optimistic people in this world will have their moments of depression . But the important thing here is how you can snap out of it . Pessimism (is there such a word ?) will only make you wallow in self-pity .
  • There’s no one in this world that is able to help yourself other than yourself . Don’t expect people to come around and help you always . You’ve gotta be the one to make the first move .
  • Books are the key source of knowledge , the key source of imagination . With books , you’re able to enter into another world which is completely different from the one you’re living in right now and you’ll be able to experience life in someone else’s shoes . Without books , there won’t ever be any imagination .
  • Don’t ever ever grow up . Embrace your childhood , for they’ll never return . And you can always relive your childhood memories no matter where you are and how old you are .
  • Don’t ever give up . Giving up means you’re conceding to defeat .
  • Have a goal in life , have an aim in life . That’ll make you focused and driven and will lead you one step closer to your dreams . Know what you wanna be doing .
  • You don’t live to please anybody .
  • Be kind and gracious to one another .
  • Believe in this magical term called LOVE .

Yeaps , so here’s some of my life lessons – my very own survival kit to endure this harsh yet beautiful existence called life 😀

Just saw Glee’s Nationals Episode . And I really really loved that episode . Not because of the choice of songs they chose , but also because of how they’ve emerged as champions .

The Glee Club has been the outsiders , the outcasts of William Mckinley High School . No one really cares about them , everybody thought they were losers . But they had proved everybody in their school wrong . They emerged as champions , as winners after winning Nationals . They proved to their schoolmates that even losers can emerge victorious . They were being slushied countless of times , but at that Nationals Episode , instead of being slushied , they were thrown confetti . Their schoolmates finally realised they had been wrong all this while and I was literally smiling to myself while watching that reunion 🙂

Oh yeahs , I love Lea Michele in It’s All Coming Back To Me Now . I simply love her voice . It’s so powerful and so , so unique . No one really has a voice like hers .

I just love it . The original singer is Celine Dion – if I’m not wrong . The song is actually 5minutes . Oh how I wished the clip was longer !

xoxo ,

ShabiraBasheer 🙂

Camaraderie

Hello world !

Well , today is my birthday ! As you can see , there are 2 “cakes” . Well , one isn’t really a cake . It’s more of a cookie shaped into a cake . A BIG COOKIE . Hahahah 😀 The cookie cake was from my family . And the “real” cake were from my besties ! 😀 I literally had a shock lah . It was the first time where all my friends came together and sang me a birthday song after school to celebrate it in the canteen . And it was definitely a nice way to celebrate my last birthday with them 😀

Truly , I feel real blessed to be surrounded my such nice , kind , compassionate AND CRAZY friends !! 🙂

The third picture are all the gifts I received . Thank you to all my family members and friends who took their time off to buy me those gifts . And pardon me for my messy table . Most of them are not even my stuffs . LOLOL . And don’t you all think I’m a patriotic person ? *ahem , Singapore flag , ahem*

Not to mention , thank you to ALL the people who wished me , via texting or via facebook . I’m a one-day celebrity ! 😀 Hahahahaha . So to those who texted me or wished me personally or on facebook , THANK YOU ! 🙂

And of course , HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Raudha , Ronnie , Ain , Aini and Jabir too . Yeaps , lots of people were born on 24th May . And yes , we’re awesome people to have been born on the same day .

P.S : I totally flipped out when I got the Glee 3D Concert Movie , as well as the pink pouch . HAHAHA .

xoxo ,

ShabiraBasheer 🙂

Don’t leave me tongue-tied

Hello world !

Finally , I’m done with the 2nd book of the Hunger Games trilogy . All I can say is that it is such a major CLIFFHANGER that leaves me wondering what in the world is going to happen to Katniss and Peeta and the rest of the characters . Not only that , Suzanne Collins has stirred a major impulse in me to pick up the 3rd book and start reading it , due to her choosing to end the 2nd book in a cliffhanger .

However , I have to resist myself . Because my MT Os are just a few days away . 4 DAYS AWAY 😐 so I really have to give it all out for my mother tongue , and do it well , once and for all 😀

It’s a good thing I didn’t read the 3rd book first and chose to ask my friend to borrow the 2nd book to me . Otherwise , I’d just been super clueless when reading the 3rd book .

I ought to say , I love the way Suzanne Collins writes . So far , after reading 2 of her books , I’ve discovered her technique . In a chapter , she’ll basically just describes what the characters do and say . But it’s only towards the end of the chapter where she raises our interest , raises our doubts , increases our tension , arouses our awareness . In this way , interest – if lost – is piqued again and interest – if still have – is sustained . This makes the reader can’t stop reading to find out what happens next , how the story will progress from there . You’re reading the blog of a literature student , so yeahs , some of my literature analyzing skills comes in here . HAHA 😀

In a way , it’s a good and a bad thing . Good thing if you’re super duper free and need time to kill . Bad if you really have to stop reading and get back to work . Your mind will get distracted , it’ll wander off to elsewhere instead of concentrating on the task at hand . And before you know it , you’ll be picking up the book again to know how the storyline proceeds .

Fortunately , I managed to resist myself and avoided the downside to it 😀 but I can’t risk myself with the 3rd book .

And I dunno , I think most of my classmates saw me reading the book intently that they’re all coming up to me and asking , “Is it that good ?” or “You’re still reading it ?” I’m like , “Yess , it’s really really good !” It’s practically the first time I’ve gotten so much attention from reading the book . HAHHAA . Maybe it was also my part of constantly telling them how great the book is . LOLOL .

Anyways , let’s see what Stephenie Meyer – author of the Twilight saga series – has to say bout the hunger games .

“I was so obsessed with this book I had to take it with me out to dinner and hide it under the edge of the table so I wouldn’t have to stop reading. The story kept me up for several nights in a row, because even after I was finished, I just lay in bed wide awake thinking about it… The Hunger Games is amazing.”

There you go . Felt exactly the same as her 😀

Well , tomorrow’s my birthday . Not so sure whether I’m looking forward to it , because my MT Os are really near in that sense . Not to mention , I’m gonna be older than most of my friends 😐

MT intensive was pretty ohkays . Just that everytime it ends , I’d have this massive brain drain . Like all my brain juices have been sucked dry out of my brain .

Xoxo ,
ShabiraBasheer 🙂