Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Waves



First there was the heatwave that swept across London and gave its inhabitants that characteristic udang bakar look, raising my suspicion if everyone indeed has mitral stenosis.

PANAS. GILA. NAK. MAMPUIH.






The weather app told me that it was 24 degrees the other day. I took a screenshot of it, adorned it with a fire emoji, and posted it on my Instagram story to share my woes with the rest of my followers. A reply came from a friend in Malaysia, insinuating that my use of the fire emoji was not justified because it was just 24 degrees.

Well...

I can see where he was coming from. Put that 24 degrees in juxtaposition to Malaysia's 30-something degrees, London may seem like mehhh. Fair enough. But here's the thing, 24 degrees... without an aircond or a fan!!! (Being a hardcore EXO fan doesn't count)

Do you know that feeling that you get when you hop into a car right after you've parked it out in the sun for a few hours and you turn the aircond on full blast only to have your face roasted by a jet stream of warm air? Yeah it's a bit like that. 

Good God, I was livid.

Not at the heat per se, but the fact that the heat was in London.

I mean, if this was Malaysia, I'd complain and whine like a baby but at the end of the day I would simply come to terms with it because it is Malaysia. I know it's hot and humid all year round. Wet armpits? Congratulations, welcome to Malaysia!

But this sort of sweltering heat here?? In London??? EXCUSE ME?



I'm sorry it's just not something I associate London with. London to me is always a gloomy city with bundles of layers and freezing winds. Like, being hot is something for Malaysia to do, not London. So when London decided to raise its temperature up a notch, I felt... Betrayed, if that makes sense. Like bumping into an old friend in a completely new, unfamiliar place. Not a nice feeling.

Maybe it's not you, London. Maybe it's me. Maybe the problem is my habit of over-stratification - putting things into boxes and labels - because it's my own systematic heuristic. It's easy. It's simplified. It allows quick recognition. The downside to that is, of course, a lot of things in this world don't belong to just one label.

Not only did the heat get on my nerves, it also made my face really oily.

Like really oily you can almost deep fry a chicken drumstick on my face.

It was further exacerbated by this physical/mineral sunscreen that I was trying out, because my trusty Biore sunscreen has run out. I don't know if the problem is physical sunscreens in general, or just this sunscreen in particular, but my skin hates it. It just sits on top of my skin without properly sinking in, giving me this tacky shiny look and this heavy feel, as though I've got a sheetmask on at all times. No amount of waiting time can push the stubborn sunscreen to sink in properly. And it makes my face feel really hot too for some weird reason. I won't toss it into the bin just yet, I suspect it'll come in handy come winter time.

But for now, I'm a damsel in distress waiting for my knight in shiny armour to come to the rescue the Amazon guy to ring my doorbell with a Biore sunscreen parcel in hand.


Apart from the heatwave, I also had to wave goodbye to Ulfah who's gone back to celebrate Eid in Malaysia.





Brb crying an ocean because I have no one to annoy and no one to annoy me now. I'm like T.T. Just like T.T Neomuhae, neomuhae.



Aaaaaand Ramadan waves hello, heralding its long anticipated arrival once again!! :D

Ramadan this year is vastly different because I'm not spending it with my family and relatives and best friends. There's also no bazaar Ramadan here so no otak-otak for me this year. And it's 18 hours of fasting so.....

GG


I was pretty much K.O. on the first day, but on the second day it wasn't so bad. Sure I felt sluggish and my stomach grumbled a bit, but I was not on the verge of passing out or anything like that. I aim to khatam the Quran during this holy month inshaAllah, but I know my period is looming around the corner so I'm trying to read as much as I can before it comes haha. And given the convenience of long daylight hours + the lack of options of good food, I really hope to shed some weight this Ramadan.


But then I also went ahead and cooked this with Iqin for buka puasa yesterday :


I've been jamming to the Despacito song for days now, not to the original lyrics but to this modified Malay version hahaha



And I had 2 servings. TWO.

Mari sama-sama sedekahkan Al Fatihah kepada azam Sheera untuk turunkan berat badan. Arwah dulu baik orangnya.


Hope it's not too late to wish everyone Ramadan Kareem! :)  Whether you're fasting at home with the lovely company of your family or in a foreign land with friends who've become family, I hope you treasure every moment of the experience and maximise your deeds during this holy month. Whatever your aims are for this Ramadan, I hope God grants you the strength & perseverance to achieve them.






Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Not Enough Storage




You know what they say, even the strongest people have their breaking point. I didn't know it applies to pestle as well.




I mean, who would have thought that a pestle - whose job is to smash and grind and crush things into fine particles - can actually break itself in half???

Ulfah and I were both in the kitchen doing our own thang when this guy slowly rolled over the kitchen top and landed on the floor with a loud thud. Our heads immediately jerked in the direction of the sound and we were both speechless for awhile because

da hell?! A pestle just broke!

Me : Can you imagine if the lesung jatuh atas kaki kita?! Mesti sakit nak mampus. 
Ulfah : Kalau jatuh atas kaki kita mungkin kaki tu yang retak.
Me : Tapi at least the lesung wouldn't break...
Ulfah : True.


And then we both spent the next minute crouching in laughter because our priorities are soooo messed up hahah.




The other day I found another way of procrastinating my revision : I played around with a shawl. Not a tudung bawal, but a shawl. As you'd expect, took a gajillion of selfies and sent them to my favourite girls, one of them being Amie.

Forgot to ask her ada cop Halal Jakim tak 






Another cousin of mine came to London conveying things my mum bought for me : dates (because my love life is non-existent... Hahaha no lah because I'll be spending the whole of Ramadan here in London), baju raya (because I'll be spending my first ever eid abroad!!! Without my family!!! Cue the saddest raya song in history), rendang maman, and of course, the love of my life, SERUNDING!!!!









Saturday, 20 May 2017

12. Out Of Control




Today is the day that I reminisced the past clear, non-runny nose days. I'm sorry I took you for granted!! 








Today is the day that I wished I'm not hypersensitive (type 1) to paracetamol, so that my paranoia of getting another anaphylaxis episode wouldn't stop me from downing a Clarinase tablet that Ulfah thoughtfully offered just now.

Today is the day that I looked at the mirror through itchy, watery eyes in disgust, because damn, those eye bags. Blemishes on my cheeks. Lack of glow.

Today is also the day that the Guerilla Date episode with Park Min Young was released and seeing her photos & videos all over Instagram didn't turn on my fangirl mode as it usually does, but it sent my self esteem plummeting instead.

Today is the day that I got worked up over things that are out of my control - my past, my body's immunological reaction to drugs, the mirror doing its honest job, my not being Park Min Young.

It's just today, I think.

Tomorrow I'll bounce back to the happy, funny, annoying Shahirah who does not wallow in self pity and focuses more on things that I have the power to control/manipulate. To facilitate you visualise that transition, it's something like this :





Sunday, 7 May 2017

Look Who's Here!!!




MY COUSIN, LUQ!!!!

(Geddit geddit??? Look?? Luq??)


Maintaining the consistency of my top notch hosting skills, I welcomed him at the arrival hall with a banner. A humongous one, no less.


Luq had one job (which is to take a proper photo of me holding the banner up so that we can share it on the family whatsapp group of course). But there he went filming me with the banner, followed by screenshotting at the exact moment my eyes were closed -_-




Fed him home made ayam masak lemak and also took him to eat at Malaysian restaurants in London. Malaysian restaurants in the US (where he studies) are few and far in between I think, and none of them within the state he's in, so he was OVERWHELMED with ecstasy when he finally got to taste some Malaysian food. Made me realise how extremely fortunate I am to be spoiled with choices here in London.










Played tourist once again but this time around I didn't take much photos with Zorro. In fact on Luq's first day, Zorro didn't even leave the camera bag. Because Luq's into photography as well and he's waaaay more advanced than I am so I forced him to take my photos instead hehe.

He complied. Well he kind of had to. Otherwise he'd be sleeping in the streets hahaha.

But it was nice for myself to be in front of the camera for a change!


Like I said earlier, he's way more advanced in photography and he has all these fancy lenses and fancy camera bag and fancy tripod. I got to borrow some of his lenses and guys, I think I'm in love with the wide angle lens.

Like.

In. Loveeeee.

Some of the photos I took using his wide angle lens :














Now I want to buy a wide angle lens.

But I also want to buy a new camera body but I also want to buy a stabiliser but I also don't have money.


:((((


And here are some of the photos Luq took of me hehe :







We talked about everything under the sun and laughed and had a bit of an emotional breakdown when we both couldn't recognise any of the newborn babies in the family whatsapp group media gallery hahaha. Turns out I'm not the only one with the Kakak Sheera Who paranoia hewhew.

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Demotivated



At that point in the semester where I question myself is a degree really necessary??




Also, I went to two markets on Sunday hunting for cherries but I came home with 3 plastic bags worth of grapes and apples and clementines and mangoes and keychains and no cherries.




Monday, 1 May 2017

Bank Holiday




Hi everyone! :)

It's the first Monday of May in the UK!!! Which means it's a Bank Holiday!!! Which is a public holiday here!!! Oh wow by the end of the third sentence all the excitement has gone down to subzero levels hahaha. Isn't it weird how explaining takes away a sizeable chunk of essence of something, be it a joke, or a declaration of joy, or whatever. That's why sometimes you shouldn't bother explaining anything to anyone and just, you know, persetankan je.

Will you look at that, only one paragraph in and I've already gone off tangent from the initial purpose of this post haha.

So aaaanyway,

it's Bank Holiday today! 

Since I'm not required to go in to the hospital today, I made mental plans last night for today, consisting largely of rotting at my desk with my eyes peeled on my Cardiology notes - oh did I tell you? I'm on my Cardiology module now! It's interesting but it's always been my weakest area of medicine, so I've been trying to study really hard to avoid sounding & looking like a complete dimwit in front of the Cardiology consultants whenever they fire off their questions at the hospital.

But even the best laid plans go awry. Sigh, such is life.

I woke up early (Subuh/Fajr ends around 5.30 a.m. now ahgfdnjfrec) and then did some workout. Afterwards I walked to the supermarket to buy some groceries, which were then combined and somehow transformed into nasi ayam!

I'd like to think that I've finally perfected my nasi ayam sambal!



I think I'm guilty of spending more time in the kitchen than at my study desk nowadays.

At this rate I'm honestly perplexed as to Shahirah ni nak jadi doctor ke nak bukak restoran sebenarnya?!

No one asked but of course Life had to be a sassy arse once again, by giving me a well deserved punishment for abandoning my study plans : I accidentally chewed one of the rempah tiga sekawan while eating the nasi ayam.

Money is the root of all evil? No, these bloody rempah tiga sekawan are the root of all evil.


Life 2 - 0 Shahirah.

One would think I'm rational enough to take that punishment as a hint to start studying, but instead, I proceeded to vacuuming my room and the kitchen and the living room.

And now I'm finally here at my study desk, but I'm blogging instead of studying hehehe.

As I'm writing this my ears are currently being serenaded by VE's Ayu, which is one of my all time faaaavourite Malay songs!!! Almost forgot how in love I am with this song, until Lah VE performed the Islamic rendition of this song on Week 4 of Gema Gegar Vaganza.

Omg Gema Gegar Vaganza just keeps getting better every week!! 

Ulfah and I agreed that it is a brilliant programme because neither of us realised how a lot of songs - even non-nasyid ones - that we already know are actually laden with Islamic values & history. I mean I'm sure if any of us actually exerted some effort into reading between the lines of the lyrics properly we'd be cognisant about them. But we're no artists, most of the time we listen to songs because they sound pleasing to the ears (and they're karok-worthy hehe). So to have an entertainment TV programme that provides a platform to elucidate the Islamic subtext of the songs and convey in palatable chunks to laymen like us, is not only commendable, but also novel, in my book.

Apart from being enlightened & reminded of all that Islamic jazz, I've also been made informed of Fitri Haris' life journey, or at least the past 6 years of his life journey. Don't know who that is? Neither did I, but now I know that he's an ex member of UNIC and I owe it all to Ulfah.

Because girl has gone full on fangirling about him ever since Week 1 and she's been telling me everything there is to know about him. Like, everything. She even knew when his flight back to the UK was.

Not sure if she's human or a breathing encyclopaedia of Fitri Haris' life.

Not that I'm complaining! She holds up well with my feeding her KDrama rants and gory medical stuff and bizarre happenings in the hospital, so the least I can do is reciprocate with the same tolerance for the Melodi-esque stuff on Fitri Haris and UNIC and Hafiz Hamidun and Hijjaz. It's a mutualistic symbiosis guys. This is the very definition of a functional friendship!! Hahaha.

She's currently buried in her notes because her finals will commence in two days' time so can everyone please be a sweetheart and raise your hands and make a little prayer for Ulfah so that Allah eases her way through her final exams (so she can get good grades to get a good job and not have to resort to producing a documentary of Fitri Haris' life as an alternative career hahah gurau!). And this applies not just to Ulfah, but to all my other friends who have evil exams looming around the corner!! Including you guys, Najwa and Amira, if you're reading this hehe. ALL THE BEST :*