New soapboxes


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Check out my new Vietnamese Blog here, and English Blog here. See you there, and there!


Despite Melbourne’s property prices rocketing faster than Apollo shuttles, online doain names seem to be at their cheapest. So in I jumped and got myself a nice little block of “land” with dual occupancy potential, then sub-divided it and whacked on two townhouses. No council permit necessary. “home package” turned out to be quite easy to build, especially after lots of work with Zen Cart which trained me for this whole open-source shenanigan. Customising is fun but I do miss the community feel of, which is like a body corporate, where certain functions are given but others are restricted. Ah well, time to move out of the nanny flat and find my own space, I reckon.

So well, here we are, my spanking new soapboxes – one for my first language and one for the second. One given, one acquired, both loved equally. Not to be a separatist but I think this way I’ll have more incentive to write, especially in Vietnamese because I’m a little ashamed I don’t write and read it as much, living in Australia and having an English speaking other half and all. And from that, hopefully my translation dream will begin to materialise. One should always hope, hey?

So folks, update your address book / bookmark bar please ;). And come visit me! I’ve got a new couch, a massive chocolate cupboard, and lots of spare bedrooms.



Who/What/Where/When would you like to thank today?

I just found out about this lovely blog via MamaMia’s site: THX THX THX by Leah Dieterich. It’s a collection of daily thank-you notes to anyone and anything. What’s even better is that they’re all hand-written! Quirky, creative, and very, very cute. Check it out.

Well, in the spirit of saying thanks, I’d like to include this:

Dear my hair,

Thank you for stubbornly sticking out on one side of my head this morning and making it look like a frayed peeled coconut, just before I had to catch up with my lovely friends for lunch. You made me realise that they don’t care much for how you look, or I look, for that matter, but enjoy my company regardless.

Lots of thanks and love,


My way, blog way, and tectonic way

1. This morning in the car to work, “My Way” was played on the radio. Not Frankie’s well-known version, but a rather slow, dragging, Pavarotti-style adaptation. I find it somehow hilarious, especially when the singer went “I aaaate iiiit uuuup and spiiiit iiiit oooouuttt.” Not as much conviction, I don’t think, as “I Ate! It! Up! And SPIT! It! Out!” So well, Frankie still wins it hands down.

2. The beauty of posting from email – and in my case, using Outlook – is that you can use Shift-F7 like it’s going out of style. That, and the ability to send off fragmented rambles with no set topics or clear directions. Not sure if that’s a good thing or bad thing for writing.

3. Apparently New Zealand’s moving towards Aussie land, in the last year it has shifted 30cm closer to us, and in 7.5 million years, our great-great-great-greeeeeaaat…-grandchildren can just stroll over to Mount Hutt and ski! Is it wrong to already be jealous of your future descendants? Or should I be concerned that at the rate we’re going, there may not be an Earth for them to start with, let alone any tectonic plate movement . Sobering thoughts…

Anyhow, enough yip-yap for the day, time to “face it all, stand tall, and do it my way”. Colloquial term: work my ass off.

Have a lovely week, peeps!


Hate mail

This morning I checked and there were two, yes, TWO!, of what I may call negative criticisms, left on this blog. One on my “skinny whinge” telling us to “get over ourselves”, and that “there are people with actual problems” out there. The other on my “poo catcher pants” review, calling me a silly bitch (aww!) and that they’d laugh at me if they saw me on the street. Wow! Let me ask you something, folks, do you know what this means? Can you even grasp the significance of this? Can you? Because OH-EM-GEE I’M FAMOUS! Total strangers left hate comments on my wall. Woohoo!

The only thing I’m regretting now is that I was so absolutely gobsmacked, I instantly pressed Delete. Talk about knee-jerk reactions. Damn! Should have left them there so I’ve got something to whine about in therapy five years down the track. “Hi, I’m Amy. Cyber strangers I never met did a Google search, came to read one entry on my blog, and decided to hate me. I have low self-esteem. I have suicidal thoughts.” That kind of thing.

Anyhow. Enough with the sarcasm. If there is one thing I’ve learnt from watching Mum deal with people, that is to not let their opinions get into you. Especially not nasty, thoughtless remarks. When encountering those, just laugh at how petty they are. Or better still, laugh at their typos. Mwahaha… 😉



It’s a strange, funny thing, this blogosphere. I’m sitting here reading (non Vietnamese) people’s blogs about their life and adventures in Vietnam. One link after another. Click. Back. Ctrl-Click. Subscribe.

I’m yearning to be home and yet undecisive as to when. If ever. Now? In two years? Five years? After I’m married? Now when I’m unattached?  Maybe when I have kids? Before then? Would there ever be a right time for anything? Maybe not. Maybe you just keep doing what you do, until one day you wake up and think that’s it!, and proceed to jump ship in a moment’s notice. Maybe you need a big push, something dramatic. Like a break-up. Which is kind of hard when there’s nothing to break. Up or down.

And then there’s that ever present question, one I’ve repeated so much it’s starting to bore even myself. But still it goes, round and round in endless circles, as if my head’s a tiny cage and the thought an agonised tiger, helplessly lashing out at the walls — Where is home? Why does it get so much harder, having choices? Not just A choice. But plural.

Sometimes I can’t stand this cynic in me. Hey you! Stop busting my chops, ok?


Wondrous weekend.

Nothing screams “WEEKEND!” better than being able to snuggle up in bed with, um… a book, till 4 in the morning, or till your eyes can’t take it no more and clam shut on their own accord, whichever’s later. Then be a sloth and sleep in until your whole body aches and your butt gets 2cm flatter, just from being horizontal and stationary for so long. (Almost half a day in some “severe cases”, ahem.) It’s funny (not!) how your muscles feel worse than they do after 40 laps at the pool, or 10km run uphill, or 3 hours straight of lindy-hopping. Bedsore — I’d rather think of that word as depicting the mattress itself feeling beaten up from having to bear the slack body on top. Poor thing.

Then, just to join in the chorus of the great weekend song, there’s washing spilling over the rim of our laundry basket, waiting to be done. Have you ever noticed how amazing it is, that there’s always washing to be done? It’s like this BIG question of life, no less. I mean, look here, despite all my effort to grow an extra body so I don’t have to play favourite with all the cute stuff I found at Camberwell market the other day, I still have only one body. ONE. Singular. And the last time I checked, m’ also only possesses the same amount of torso and limbs. So how the heck is it that we always have at least 3 loads of washing to do every weekend? Mind baffling isn’t it? Something Aristotle et al should definitely have pondered. Those who seek that eternal spring of youth — or an endless supply of Botox, for that matter — should save themselves the disappointment by coming around and take a good look at our eternal spring of… laundry. Same concept. Except that one doesn’t exist and one is perpetually IN. MY. FACE!

Although after much mumbling and grumbling about saving water, time, and arm muscle power, I’ve put it down to the fact that it is because we’re purging the wardrobe of depressing thick winter threads and moving them out to the garage. See? Another reason why in order to save the earth, we need to get rid of winter. It’s just so wasteful, don’t you see? More material for clothes, more power for heating, more time wasted on washing stuff. While that time should be much more efficiently spent… lazing out at the beach, for example. In the cold weather, people are less active, more lethargic. They smile less, whinge more, do less, sleep more. Although certain people sleep more no matter what season it is. *cough* But that’s beside the point.

Anyhoo, one more rant and I’ll be out of your hair. Why is it that no one blogs on the weekend?! Especially the professional bloggers. No one Facebooks either. Why? Why? Surely people have a little more time — while waiting for their brains to finish rattling in their skulls, thanks to that silly washing machine which has been laboriously vibrating the whole house since 2 hours ago, obviously — to check and write little daily snippets, or to send yet another friggin’ annoying Lil Green Patch request? Something that during the week they would (and should) be too busy to do? Isn’t it logical?

What? What did you just say about “a life”? What do you mean people go out and play sports and spend time with their loved ones and stuff? You mean I don’t have a life? Hah! Tell you what, just wait right there and I’ll show you how I have so much more of “a life” than you’ve ever seen. Right after I’ve hung up these 30 pairs of socks and finished cleaning that stain out of a dress (evil Thai curry!) and mend that split on the bottom of my favourite pair of pants. Hmph! Just you wait!

Anyway, life or no life, I’m going to buck the trend. I’m going to be a Weekend Blogger. By making sure to put something up here on either Saturday or Sunday, or both. Even if that means I may sometimes have to cheat and set completed posts to publish on automatic schedule. Something that, like frozen meals, I don’t really want to do.

~summer lover~