Saturday, November 24, 2012

When all that you've tried leaves nothing but holes inside.

I will start this post like how I always do; by apologizing for not blogging more often. I've got no excuses. I'm sorry I forgot. I've realized that is is more fun to name my blogs literally based on the song lyrics that I'm hearing right now, and now it is Joe Brooks' 'Holes Inside'.
October was dream-come-true month, completely amazing. I got to perform at so many places I never thought I would. Places like Laundry, RedFM, TV 2. It was surreal and I'm thankful that I got the chance to do it. We also got a water heater installed in the bathroom and it felt like heaven.
November was sickness/exam/child-advocacy month. I've had this cold for nearly a month now that it feels weird that I've recovered (almost). Good weird tough. This month was a pretty busy month. It went by so fast I didn't realize we were already nearly at the end of it. I try not to look too far ahead nowadays because there is so much to do now. 
The first test/exam of the month was Physics. Terrible, terrible physics. I don't normally feel pressured during exams but my whole class seemed to be taking it very seriously and I think that rubbed off on me. I remember feeling like I was half asleep during my English test. My essay was completely made-up as I went. I felt as if I was doomed.
This was it. Our one chance to be outdoors instead of that freezing cold refrigerator we call our classroom. I thought we were going to a climb hill and there would be insects and plants in the way and slopes. That's Broga, not outback Broga. Outback Broga was clean and bug-free and the ground was flat. There weren't even any mosquitoes. Either way, it was nice to be outside for a change. Ahh, the muddy lake, obstacle courses and the smell of nature.
Oh wait, that was the toilet.
The jump down the flying fox at the beginning was the scariest of the entire course. I looked down and all I could see was the lake and nothing else. It felt like jumping while knowingly knowing and completely aware that no one's going to catch you. We also climbed rocks and kayaked. The obstacle course was like Wipeout but with dirtier water and less polished equipment. It was so cool! We had to get to the middle through one of five paths: A ladder made of ropes, a tire bridge, a log, a tightrope or a barrel boat and get back through another. If you fell, you had to start again. I tried to hide my excitement. I along with everyone else were dreading getting wet in the muddy water so I tried my best not to fall. Thank goodness it was easier than it seemed, so I didn't fall or get wet. I don't think our class had ever interacted with each other this much before. That must've been the whole point of it, getting us to talk to each other. Then halfway through our games it started to rain. And then it started to pour. I wasn't dry anymore, I was soaked. It was so much fun!
The next day, Jet and I went to help Childline out at TV2's carnival at Menara KL. Childline is a 24/7 hotline (15999) where children can call and just talk to someone or ask for advice. We helped distribute badges and cards and were supposed to help facilitate a short session with the children that were attending but it got postponed and I ended up not doing very much. I got to hang out with Nabilah, Jet, Shanka, Alex and all the other child advocates for a few hours. There was an animal display next to our booth showing exotic animals like snakes, spiders, scorpions, raccoons and sugar-gliders. We talk about the rights of a child, but these animals have rights too.
The day after that, Sunday was great. I got to perform at No Black Tie. 
NO BLACK TIE. 
Jasmine organized it as part of FYEST and I would be part of the live recording that would eventually become a compilation CD. I remember last year when I was recording at the studio, we were talking to the sound engineer and he said that it is a big deal if you get to play at No Black Tie. It sure felt like a huge deal. It didn't feel real. 
I wished I had practiced more, but it was hard to do so being sick. Mom insisted on taking me to the doctor and I had no excuses left because I wasn't getting any better even though I kept saying I was. I hate going to the doctor because even if you don't feel quite sick, going there will make you feel sicker than you really are. After being reluctantly dragged there, the doctor told me that I had a fever that I didn't know (or didn't want to know) I had and gave me so many kinds of medicine. One word: YUCK.
Came back, got dressed and made our way to No Black Tie. It was this little shop in KL, very cozy and warm. I was standing at the entrance not knowing which was the door and which was the wall. Turns out what I thought was the wall was actually a giant door. We walked into the room and it was draped with black cloth and little round tables had candles in the centre. The walls were filled with pictures of artist that have performed here before. I went upstairs and there was a little secluded balcony area where you could see the stage and everything. 
Did a quick sound-check, and then a moment of omg-I'm-really-here-in-this-amazing-place excitement. I was up first. I was pretty nervous not so much because I was here but mainly because I didn't want to mess this up. I think I did mess it up a little though, it definitely wasn't my best performance but I had a great time. (First and second photos by Mark Walker, third photo by Prakash Daniel Photography)
I'm not very good at talking to people, so I told the audience that and I think they thought that was a funny thing to say. I sang three songs; Paper Planes, Thought You Were Different and Red.
So many other great artist performed after me like Bizhu, Clinton Liew Band, Ryota Katamaya and Narmi. I was just sitting there in awe watching them all perform. They're all so good, one day I hope to be that good too. I did notice one thing though, that we all sing pretty sad songs. Occasionally, the happy tune but mainly sad ones. I find sadness and frustration are the emotions that are easier to write about because they're complicated and are hard to wrap your head around. They're more intriguing. 
This is Bihzu. She is AMAZING! It was just her and a cellist for her set. And the cellist used a loop machine! It was SO cool. She's so supportive too. We were the only two female acts that night. I especially loved the line in one of her songs "bloodless wounds need time too heal" As she sang it I thought to myself "What does that mean, what does it really mean?" And there I go thinking too mcuh again. 
By the time I got to the car at the end of the show, the side-effects of the medicine was kicking in and I was so dizzy and sleeeeppyyyyy. Then... it went downhill becoming one of the worst nights ever. I had never felt this sick. Like all of a sudden the world was spinning and it was freezing cold. The next morning I felt a little better but not very much. I was supposed to sound check at KL Convention Centre today but we canceled. I was right, I was now sicker than I was before I went to the doctor. Oh well at least my cough was gone. 
Then it came back again because I was too afraid to eat my medicine.

The next weekend was the Children For Child Protection forum at KL Convention Centre. I have been attending workshops since September gearing up for this day. It would be run by children, for children and at the end of the day, we would make recommendations to the government on how we want to make our home a better place. About 500 children had been signed up and nearly 50 of us would be speaking, writing, tweeting, taking videos and facilitating. We spent the entire Saturday running through what we would be doing, where we had to go and at what time. At lunch, they gave us a lot of food but most importantly a chocolate fountain. How cool was that? It was the most popular dish for sure. 
It was a very big event. The entire 3rd and 4th floor were invaded by children on Sunday. This was our chance to say what we wanted to say and stand up for what we believed in. My mum and dad were also facilitators. 
I, with four others were in charge of tweeting. We were part of the nationwide Tweet Chat organized by Unicef and The Star's Rage. We tweeted about the event and what was going on and also on the topic of teen relationships #MyTeenLove. I have got a lot, A LOT to say and tell you about the forum in another post so I'll tell you just a little over here. 
All the children were split into 5 groups for discussion; home safety, bullying, emotional abuse, internet safety, and safe relationships. From there we got into smaller groups and discussed what we understood from the topic, the problems faced and how to solve those problems.
During lunch time, I got to perform a quick couple of songs and then rushed to the Tweet Chat talk. It was a pretty big deal and we sat there like a bunch of teenagers tweeting. The only difference was that they were all tweeting too. Adibah Noor was there too and she re-tweeted each of us which was like the highlight of our session.
At the end of all the discussing, all of the child advocates and the people who made us child advocates sat down in a room and wrote down those recommendations from the different workshops we attended.  The ministers and important people who would be taking out recommendations into consideration had arrived and we were all seated in the main hall to witness it. 
It was a proud moment, and a moment of achievement for us. We have become close friends through this process and it was bittersweet to see it end. We pulled it off, we actually made it until the end. 
But this is not the end of our child advocacy journey. I've got two years left to being a kid.
I came home exhausted after another tiring weekend and went to bed early. I got up in the middle of the night shivering so I got my ipod and my hoodie and went back to sleep and prayed I was not getting sick again. But I did. 
I had one of those vivid dreams-within-a-dream where I was sleeping and I woke up, but I woke up in the dream not in real life and then I'd wake up to real life. I've been getting that pretty often lately. 
I took panadol and now I'm finally better. 

Oh, and I didn't fail math OR physics! English marks were pretty good too, what a relief!

Wednesday was my Dad's birthday and this is what he wished for: http://passion-for-change.tumblr.com/post/36198380518/friendshipfund. Check it out and maybe you can help too! We had a little 'not-a-party' party with chocolate cake and home-cooked Indian food. Yummm

Also,
Two of my videos have reached 2,000 views on youtube! People have been very supportive lately leaving nice comments and subscribing. I've gotten 100 more subscribers than I had the year before. I want to thank you for all that you've done. I have just signed up for StageIt, an online concert venue and hope to do one online sometime soon. I'm a little afraid no one would turn up. I've been writing quite a lot of unfinished songs lately, but here's on that is finished:
You can download this song for free too!
I mean, if you want to.

To end this blog post here's a really random poem I wrote yesterday for a facebook contest:

For 25 years, 
the cat lived here.
For 25 years, 
it lived here in this slipper.


One cold afternoon, 
the cat found a hammer.
He stood there for a while,
and looked at it with wonder.
"What an interesting thing!
A rod of power!
Like a pencil, only much, much bigger!
How curious! How lovely!
How peculiar!"
He picked it up with his tiny front paws.
But it was too heavy,
and he fell to all fours.
The hammer flew into the air
and started falling back down, 
faster and faster.
It hit the ground with an awful sound
and smashed, and crushed, and killed a flower. 
That once beautiful flower belonged to his master.
He was caught red-pawed, on camera.
And that,
is how he ended up living in this slipper.

Thanks for reading this!!
-Amrita

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