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15 April 2011 @ 11:49 pm
leaving this space for [info]hrzontal. for good this time. add me back ya.
19 March 2011 @ 05:50 am
its in our blood, our malay blood, rid says, as i rave to him about how i love the sea. i had a really bad headache - the lights were too bright eventhough the barrage was closed, and perhaps i had smoked one too many sticks. or maybe it was the bong, i dont know. but once we got out of the car and the familiar sea breeze hit the four of us, i got okay. i breathe the cool air in, and get chills from that same calming feeling. the same calming feeling i got just moments ago when prabs vic n me were at keppel, the same feeling i always have whenever i go fishing. its the breeze and the quiet nudges of the waves, the chill air that comes together into this intoxicating mix of ease and comfort. i laugh at the truth of his statement, perhaps i was really born to be a 'nelayan' after all. we walked to the edge of the viewing point, us four, co-dependent friends. not unlike prabs vic n me too. its really great, this quiet kind of understanding, no holds-barred conversing. i light another stick, okay enough for just one more. we'd end up finishing those few packs. i remember how i itched for a cigarette when i went fishing in johor two days ago. but it wasnt an addiction kind of itch, i think, it was more of a oh it would be really good to have one right now kind of itch. i ended up ploughing thru that bottle of gum i bought. it was funny, how my uncle complained so much about smoking. i didnt buy any in those hours that we fished on that raft, more so out of respect. he brought me all the way to another country to fish, the least i could do was respect his wishes.

we did what we do best, sat/lied down in  comfortable positions and said whatever came to mind. i turn up my ipod, and remind myself to get down to organising the damn thing. conversations are punctuated by the crackling of cigarettes and flicking of lighters. and the waves. i like how we're all so free to do these things, drive aimlessly in the dead of the night when the roads are empty and go just about anywhere we want. the night sky is too beautiful, i really hope vic uploads his pics soon, keppel has such a nice view. i wouldnt change a thing, we talk about regrets and the past, of opportunities and girls that have come and gone. but really, i tell them, i wont change a damn thing, im really okay with being who i am. they laugh at how im such a good boy, whatever that means, and i laugh too, mostly because of the way they put it. everyone has their own story, and we all listen with such sincerity that its almost too good to believe. i dont see that anymore, people dont know how to be sincere anymore, maybe. i couldnt ask for more than this from friends. my brother sends me a text, saying how he ended up cleaning mama's grave while going ghost hunting with his friends, whatever that is. i smile and thank god i have this brother of mine, and these friends of mine for that matter. it might be a bit indulgent, but we could have turned out a lot worse i think. i have been out for 12 hours and still, im wide awake and not tired at all. people tell me to savour all this free time now, its gonna be hell when uni starts, and yeah im doing my very best. prabs asked me today if we're all gonna go back to our post As lifestyle, and haha i keep silent in agreement.

rid, the designated driver says its time to go. i take a last drag and flick it away, watching the sparks drift off into the wind. this freedom of being alone, of having all the time in the world is going to end, but for now, its pretty okay.
09 March 2011 @ 12:19 am
i remember leaving clementi with a backward gaze, taking slow steps in a hollywood-esque attempt to make things last longer and have more meaning. if u asked me if i would feel the same way about a dinky corner in jurong island i would have called you mad. how could i, being whisked away to an offshore place without any chance to accomplish anything. pretty unfair and even indulgent. ive been placed in a very curious position, seeing people leave before me and getting to say a month-long goodbye to the people, the place and the life here. ive been lurking around the station alot and remembering the things ive done. little things that spark flashbacks and make me feel light inside. i wish i could record all the conversations ive had with everyone. like some small kid i recall the personal victories ive managed to accumulate, some that people know and some dont, and i get this really good feeling. ive grown up so much here, experienced life and people and things i never in my life thought that i would ever have. the hariz from a few years ago would never have thought he'd turn out this way. i wasnt a good person that time, and i am so thankful for the way things always turn out. theyre never ideal, i always think theyre far from it, but theyve always helped me become a better person, ensuring that i dont turn into some self-conceited mess of a person. i dont want to be like that. and many things, like Banyan, or PJC, have really kept me grounded.

 we were flicking reds just now, just nizan and me, and i was chugging the delicious phenomena known as white coffee, and we were just talking. i listened with interest as he talked about people, some i knew some i didnt. and it was so easy, talking to all of them is so easy. its rare to find people i can talk easily with, no fear of anything because chances are they've seen/done worse, but its all good. mutual understanding. ive said before, camaraderie is a thing i can never describe adequetely but its there when you know it is. thats got to be the best part of NS, i think. i went ard station armed with cameras today, immortalising the sights and hopefully, the memories as well. good thing i brought them today. it isnt perfect, banyan fire station, but its pretty alright. ive never been good with goodbyes, theyre always so hard to do, but im glad i printed those photos and stayed up all night writing them. it felt really fitting to pass them around. i keep telling people to not miss me too much but haha who am i kidding i'm gonna miss all the people here too, hafiz was spot on. like i said in all those notes, ive been really blessed with a memorable ns experience. many folks like to compare about how much more worse their ns life is, how they managed to endure more or navigate thru tougher shit from higher ups or put up with their sense of displacement. but when people ask me, im not gonna say about all those things. I felt them too (i'll never forget all those swojo shoutings or frustrations) but i'll tell people about how great this whole stint was, and how i got to learn so much - not just about firefighting or rescue but about myself too. its been a heck of a 2 years and when it all ends tomorrow i'll keluar baris with wide smile i'll look like a fool. an operationally ready fool (still dont know why its called that). yeah, even though i'll probably get dunked into the kolam. repeatedly. occupational hazard i guess
21 February 2011 @ 02:56 am
12 February 2011 @ 11:56 pm
you've probably heard thisCollapse )

i left my speakers and ipod on in the watch room, and when i come in the cab is singing about stopping the clock together, knowing that the timing was right. i hear a loud noise from outside and open the gate, trying not to get too envious of the orange vespa that zips past me. soon, when i get finances right and when i genuinely feel like its right. soon. halim comes in and we talk, making a point of how nice he is to accompany me. i smirk and dont say anything, but i dont mind. i was going to work on that 70s show (how awesome is it that i have 7 whole seasons to go thru) but instead i rewatch a couple of episodes of glee because it felt right. we talk about how ridiculous and wonderful it is. he makes me explain all the storylines and characters, thankfully i like this show enough to remember.

i go up to the locker room to find packets of coffee and chips scattered across the floor. andhika says its a reward, for all of us winning just now. most of its gone because i came up late, but i see a reserved packet just for me. i dont immediately take it, who does that, but instead light a stick and take a few puffs - my breaths a mix of nicotine and relief. a man u game is on, and i suddenly remember of my probable internship, and tell myself if i want to survive there i should at least know some things. not that im clueless, but putting in more effort wouldnt hurt. i listen to the knowledgable banter, both from the indonesian commentators and the guys in the room. all while slowly untying the coffee, delicately untying the knot. nazmin taught me a trick to untying these wrapped packets, which were almost impossible to undo before. i give appreciative nod and take a sip - it tastes hot and amazing. the way people take in all these opinions is interesting, the way they turn it around in their heads, unwrapping and analysing what they hear before dishing out a response. there's so much passion and belief involved, it almost seems like an art. its half time and theyre making all these comments and analysing every kick and pass to death. i sneak an occasional snigger and sometimes even laugh out loud at what i hear, its pretty funny. the weird ass indonesian ads dont help at all, who makes these things? two girls are fooling around with what appears to be sausage shaped candies, for a good 10 seconds. tasteful, i guess. i dont even have to say it, everyone screams with laughter. you can tell, everyone was glad to win today. i cant remember the last time i got rewarded for something. lots of my friends and cousins get new games and phones and things for results and achievements, but my brother and i stopped getting them when my parents left. it felt strange and yet familiar, getting something for achieving. but you know what i think. i think we didnt really need those gifts, this feeling in the locker room right now, this, this is rewarding enough. at least for me.

me and lek walk to the kolam to feed his fishes. theyre nowhere to be found. he's been away for 11 days and no one's been feeding them, and theyre all gone. but no he says, scattering the red pellets and knocking on the metal. theyre there, just wait. the wind's really nice, and the banyan night sky is, as always, perfect. lek's got a look full of confidence and certainty, you cannot help but believe that his fishes are there. and sure enough they swim up and peck at the pellets, as if in disbelief that there is food. the wind makes funny shapes in the water. he asks me when i ord, and what do i make of these past 2 years. i smile, thinking about all the triumps ive had, all the quiet victories i keep to myself and feel a warm blooming inside. i tell him about some of them, relaying expressive anecdotes about as many things as i can remember. and he agrees. i think i did okay. i didnt get to experience as many things as so many other people, didnt get to do as many things or see as many things but really, i think i did pretty okay.
11 February 2011 @ 01:07 am
Once on a yellow peice of paper with green lines

he wrote a poem

and he called it "chops"

because that was the name of his dog

and thats what it was all about

his teacher gave him an A

and a gold star

and his mother hung it on the kitchen door

and read it to his aunts.

that was the year Father Tracy

took all the kids to the zoo

and he let them sing on the bus

and his little sister was born

with tiny nails and no hair

and his mother and father kissed alot

and the girl around the corner sent him a

Valentine signed with a row of X's

and he had to ask his father what the X's meant

and his father always tucked him in bed at night

and was always there to do it


once on a piece of white paper with blue lines

he wrote a poem

he called it "Autumn"

because that was the name of the season

and that's what it was all about

and his teacher gave him an A

and asked him to write more clearly

and his mother never hung it on the kithcen door

beause of the new paint

and the kids told him

that Father Tracy smoked cigars

and left butts on the pews

and sometime they would burn holes

that was the year his sister got glasses

with thick lenses and black frames

and the girl around the corner laughed

when he asked her to go see santa claus

and the kids told him why

his mother and father kissed alot

and his father never tucked him in bed at night

and his father got mad

when he cried for him to do it


once on a paper torn from his notebook

he wrote a poem

and he called it "Innocence: A Question"

because that was the question about his girl

and thats what it was all about

and his professor gave him an A

and a strange steady look

and his mother never hung it on the kitchen door

because he never showed her

that was the year Father Tracy died

and he forgot how the end

of the Apostles's Creed went

and he caught his sister

making out on the back porch

and his mother and father never kissed

or even talked

and the girl around the corner

wore too much make up

that made him cough when he kissed her

but he kissed her anyway

becuase it was the thing to do

and at 3 am he tucked himself into bed

his father snoring soundly


that's why on the back of a brown paper bag

he tried another poem

and he called it "Absolutely Nothing"

because that's what it was really all about

and he gave himself an A

and a slash on each damned wrist

and he hung it on the bathroom door

because this time he didnt think

he could reach the kitchen----

07 February 2011 @ 07:14 am
too many hellos and goodbyes happening at the same time
04 February 2011 @ 10:04 pm
"Sometimes I imagine my own autopsy. Disappointment in myself: right kidney. Disappointment of others in me: left kidney. Personal failures: kishkes. ... When the clocks are turned back and the dark falls before I'm ready, this, for reasons I can't explain, I feel in my wrists. And when I wake up and my fingers are stiff , almost certainly I was dreaming of my childhood. ... Yesterday I saw a man kicking a dog and I felt it behind my eyes. I don't know what to call this, a place before tears. The pain of forgetting: spine. The pain of remembering: spine. All the times I have suddenly realized that my parents are dead, even now, it still surprises me, to exist in the world while that which made me has ceased to exist: my knees. ... To everything a season, to every time I've woken only to make the mistake of believing for a moment that someone was sleeping beside me: a hemorrhoid. Loneliness: there is no organ that can take it all." 

-Nicole Krauss
16 January 2011 @ 01:43 am
13 January 2011 @ 12:22 am
xxxxxxxxxCollapse )