Here’s a corny joke to start off this week’s gratitude journal entry: What did Baby-corn say to Mama-corn?
Hello, welcome back to Last Week Tonight, not with John Oliver, but Strawberry & Me! Our main story tonight concerns… Ice-cream!
It’s another weekend and we were playing Resistance again! We had seven people and three of us, including me, were spies. Two spies revealed themselves when they thought the game had ended but roommate pulled out a veto card and the vote was made null. This was when I, the Poker Face, came and saved the day!
You have no idea how many thoughts were racing under my calm, expressionless appearance. How should I explain voting yes for the two spies to go on the mission? Who should be my scapegoat? How should I convince them of my (fake) innocence, or at least minimize their doubts against me? Fortunately, my counterparts employed reverse-reverse-reverse psychology to antagonize two suspicious resistance members and protected my disguise. And this was when my experience of watching Criminal Minds came in handy 😛 But I will not expose my secrets here XD In the end, the spies won with the riskiest recovery to date.
On Saturday night, we went to Wat a Night—a night market event—hosted by our school. As a night of Asian Culture Exploration, it had over 20 booths selling traditional food such as Filipino skewers, Indian butter chicken, Taiwanese bubble tea and meat balls, Vietnamese dessert and sandwich (bánh mì), Chinese hot pot, Cantonese dim sum, mango sticky rice, and many more!
Almost everything was sold out before 9pm! I wish our school will host more big events like this one in the future 😉 We went grocery shopping on the way home (or more like I did the shopping and they helped carrying the bags home 😛 ). Now I actually have food for a proper meal rather than having oatmeal day and night (although apparently oatmeal helps you sleep better).
Even though it was pretty chilly outside, I’m glad I actually went out because it felt like I actually accomplished something over the weekend instead of staying in my room all day. Frankly, I have trouble understanding why I’m scared of going out alone. Thankfully, I’m living with roommates whom are very compassionate and are willing to keep me company. So although the living environment can be awful at times (especially in winter), there’s always this little ball of warmth—like cuddling up in front of a fireplace with a mug of hot cocoa—in my heart ❤
P.S. Night markets predominantly exist in Asian countries such as Malaysia, Thailand, etc., and especially Taiwan. Have you been to one before? What do you think of the atmosphere? What food did you try or do you like from there? Let me know in the comments!
I would like to start two little projects from this week onward. The first one is to keep a gratitude journal, which (hopefully) will be published every Thursday; the second project is to post a short story or a poem of mine every Friday. I’m hoping these two will become regular features on my blog 🙂
Now let’s talk about how each entry of my gratitude journal is likely to be structured. We encounter a lot of different things weekly, even daily. Some are good, some are bad, and some don’t leave that big of an impression on your mind. I would like to choose to record one good thing, one bad thing, and one thing for each week. You may wonder why I choose to write about a bad thing in a gratitude journal, my explanation is that it is a way to practice positive thinking by shedding light on the silver lining of that cloud.
This week, the one thing would be an (jokingly) ugly incident that happened last Friday. That is how the title plays its trick! Behold! The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of this week:
The Good: Mom being supportive regardless of what choice I will choose in the end.
I’m grateful for Mom being supportive of me, even though I haven’t taken my responsibilities properly. In the past, she and I fought and argued a lot due to our different opinions. And at some point in my life, I just gave up seeking support from her or from my family. But since the concerning issue is likely a game changer, it was necessary to discuss with her. Even though she had expressed her support in the past, I never truly heard or believed her because deep down I didn’t want to disappoint anyone, even if it meant living my life with the solitary goal of impressing everyone else but myself. This time, I told myself to be patient and hear her out when discussing the issue with her. She talked about her take on the issue, expressing that she would support me regardless of what I choose in the end. Neither of us got annoyed or impatient during the conversation, and this was probably the first time I took her support seriously. I know now that Mom has always got my back, and I won’t be disappointing her whether what choice I make.
The Bad: The unrealistic hope of passing my exams when I haven’t been to class a single day this term.
This worries me so much. I texted some friends throughout the week and asked them whether or not they thought I would be able to pass my exams if I started catching up now. Surprisingly, they all believed that I could do it, as long as I was willing to try. I’m not sure if they had actually ran the probability or they just said that because they didn’t want me to give up, yet this showed not only their support but also their faith in me. I had a long and meaningful discussion with one of them, and we even prayed together at the end of the night. I am never a person of self-confidence, and I don’t trust myself due to my belief that I will make the wrong decision or fail the task. I know such belief will do me no good since it will likely become the manifestation of self-fulfilling prophecy, but depression has rendered positive thinking difficult. However, their support and faith have sustained a boost of confidence in myself, and even though I know this is as unrealistic as it can get, I’m still able to regain a little faith and hopefulness. This bit of hopefulness is all I need to keep going on.
The Ugly: Losing in a game called Resistance because my roommates were spies.
Resistance is a board game, but can also be played with just a deck of cards. A brief description of the game would be there are spies amongst the resistance members, and they win by failing three out of five missions. So throughout the game, the resistance has to ensure they do not choose any spy to go on a mission, all the while trying to determine whom they can trust (spies have a chance to identify each other at the beginning of each round). Now let me tell you how things got ugly. A roommate had friends over and she and her friends, in addition to me and another roommate, decided to play Resistance. Amongst the six of us, the spies, unfortunately, turned out to be my two roommates. When it was my turn to pick whom to go on a mission, I didn’t pick her guy friends (blame my past failed relationships) since I trusted them without a doubt. But, as you can foresee, the mission failed and everyone suspected I was the spy. When I found out the truth at the end of the game, it was like discovering a whole new side of them, how they played innocent when they were conspiring against the resistance. Everyone was surprised and, for the record, I did say I wouldn’t forgive them and their betrayal and they had become the reason I would only trust guys from then on. But of course this is just a joke I throw around now 😛 It was a fun night and I’m grateful for them insisting me to join in. This was one of their attempts to drag me out of my cave, and I appreciate their intention and our friendship very much ❤
P.S. Do you keep a gratitude journal? What are you thankful for this week? Feel free to comment and tell me about it!
Okay, the title might be misleading because this dinner actually happened last Saturday. Fun weekend adventures have almost become our ritual 😛 This time we decided to try out this supposedly good Vietnamese restaurant called Pho Dau Bo, which was a half-an-hr bus ride from home.
Most people have tried the Vietnamese spring rolls Cha Gio, but it was our first time to order Goi Cuon Tom Thit Heo, which was Shrimp & Pork Salad Rolls. It was pretty refreshing, with tastily grilled pork! But Cha Gio is still my favourite, yum!
For entrée, I got Beef Stew with Egg Noodles in Soup, which surprised me because apparently, Vietnamese put tendon in their beef stew. I had expected a more western style of it, with only the meat part being in the stew. Anyways, The dish was rich in flavour, so it was still pretty good despite my shock.
In fact, I wasn’t as interested in the food as the time spent with my roommates. As a person struggling with depression and anxiety, it was, and still is, difficult for me to get out of my comfort zone. This dinner was the fourth time they tried to drag my out of my cave to do something together, and I was grateful for their effort and persistence. They are the people I’d talk to when I’m stressed out by academics and familial issues. The value of this dinner wasn’t in the food; it was in the friendship amongst us.
P.S. Do you like Vietnamese cuisine? What’s your favourite dish? What was your last adventure with your friends or roommates? Please feel free to comment and tell me what you think!