30 March 2020

Yesterday (Sunday) marked the end of my first week back at home with my parents. And I must say: I’m liking it very much.

I haven’t spent a lot of time with my parents in recent years (only every other weekend and that’s mostly spent shut away subtitling alone in their bedroom). So being at home full-time is a big change, and a good one.

For the first time in over a decade, yesterday I did gardening with my dad. Two and a half hours of trimming bushes (i.e. ruining my dad’s perfectly trimmed bushes) and sweeping. It was invigorating. This used to be our Sunday ritual. One that stopped some time into my teens.

I’ve also enjoyed long walks in the residential complex. We live in a gated community – what we call in Thai “village” – and there is a wide main thoroughfare which now serves as exercise area for the residents. You’d see people jogging, cycling and (in my case) walking. The thoroughfare is plenty wide enough that we can easily maintain 2 meters between us.

On Saturday, I went out for my first walk around mid-day. It was blazing hot – but I enjoyed it. It was my first time out in the sun since probably the Saturday before. I put Billie Eilish on shuffle, discovering her songs (I’d only heard a few before) as I walked back and forth along the main thoroughfare.

Yesterday though I put on Taylor Swift – my all-time favourite singer, which gave an entirely different flavour to my walk. At one point I started singing and realised to my surprise that I remember most of the lyrics to You Belong With Me. I guess I’ve listened to it so many times when I was younger that the lyrics edged themselves into my memory without my even knowing.

So yes, gardening and walking back-and-forth in the complex. Those are pretty enjoyable. I’m not sure how a post that began with me spending more time with my parents turned into me walking in the complex with music in my ears. But hey, that’s how it goes.

On Saturday I also updated my main blog with some thoughts that had been forming in my mind in the past weeks. Thoughts around how social distancing has brought me closer to some of the people in my life – you can read the post here.

Hope social distancing is treating you well. Extraordinary times we live in.



29 September 2014

This blog is my baby.

I realised this a few minutes ago while updating my LinkedIn profile.

I mean… I always knew this was going to be my most intimate blog. But I never quite realised how much I would come to cherish it. Until a few minutes ago, that is.

When you incorporate your digital footprint into your professional profile, you have to be careful how you portray yourself on your platforms. That’s the price I am having to pay on my two other ‘serious’ blogs, which I have now LinkedIn to my LinkedIn profile (the wordplay doesn’t look as good on screen as it did in my mind… but I’m just going to leave it).

It’s not that I am super professional and serious on those blogs and dumping all my dirty laundry here. I mean, come on, if you really want to dig, you’re going to find this blog in a heartbeat. I’m not exactly keeping it locked away in a safe. All those hashtags on twitter aren’t there to keep people from finding this blog (though they don’t appear to be having the opposite effect either – oops).

Which, strangely, is exactly why I love this blog so much. It feels like my corner on the Internet. It feels intimate. I know it’s nothing like the privacy of my home, but not having that many visitors puts less pressure on me. I can write whatever I want here. I can trial different styles. I can talk about random stuff. I can ramble on, and on, and on, without ever having to worry about losing my followers or appearing fickle.

Not that I don’t cherish each and every one of you reading this (thank you for reading!)… but not having so many of you just takes the pressure off. The pressure I constantly feel when writing a featured post on Living Time, or on my shiny new blog A Squared Journey (a.k.a. the promise-breaker). I write so much faster here. The thoughts flow. The words just fall out of my hands. It’s great.

I am happy I have this baby to write on.

Thank you all for reading it.


Mother Val





21 September 2014

It’s that time of year again – Wikipedia is asking for donations.

I went on it the other day to look up who-knows-what, and the message popped up. I have donated in the past (and feel pretty good about myself for it), but I wasn’t feeling particularly charitable this time around and, with a tiny pang of guilt, promptly clicked on the tiny cross in the corner.

Here’s a link to donate should you like to do so. I plan to become a regular donor myself once I’m on a payroll. ‘No money in, no money out’ is my motto of the day. Until I find myself a job, I’m not going to add to the financial commitments I already have.

You see, I can be pretty sensible if I want to.

Talking about being sensible, I’m taking proofreading jobs again. Since I have time on my hands, I figured I might as well. I’m not doing it purely for the money though. I like reading other people’s writing. It’s fascinating to see how different minds operate and express themselves. Also, it satisfies my urge to correct every little grammatical mistake I see. I have the itch every time someone asks me ‘just to comment’ on a text and not proofread it. *shudders*

I’m in the middle of writing a long post for my other blog. These long posts take a long time to write. Since they’ll go on my Featured Content page, I want to make sure I’m absolutely happy with them. Feel free to check the other featured ones out if you want to – they are my babies, my pride and joy.

So what am I doing writing this instead? To be frank, I lost my train of thought. I had finally come up with the first paragraph (always the hardest part), and sentences were flowing from my fingertips – all was well and good. Until I decided to take a break to have a read-through. When I came back to the text editor, I had lost my train.

This happens to me from time to time. Something I’m hoping writing more will help me avoid. (That’s actually the reason behind this diary blog: to get me writing more often.) But in the meantime, I’ll take this opportunity to condense and organise my thoughts on the post a bit more. I’m sure the next sentence will come to me in a shower; that seems to be when I’m my most creative self. I’ve heard similar comments from other writers/creative people. It must have something to do with the body being relaxed and the mind released from the mundane tasks that usually occupy it. I wonder if anyone has ever done a study on the effects of being in a shower on our creative impulse and/or subconscious. Hmm…

I love how random this blog allows me to be. *happy sigh*

OK – I think that’s enough writing for today. Time for Big Bang Theory! As they say, you can’t write if you don’t read. Or watch Big Bang Theory.

Have a good Sunday everyone!