It’s only been little more than a month into 2014 and I’ve already had so many photos and thoughts I wanted to post — the accumulation of it all got too much and if I don’t start somewhere, it’ll never happen. Frankly, I can’t believe January is already over, and I’m sure I’m not the only person who feels that way.
I’ve been restless lately because of all the changes going on in my home life — being between flats and house sitting, etc. — but I’m finally about to move into a new flat, which will hopefully be a little “permanent”, if I could use that word at all. I’ve complained all summer long that I don’t want to return to university. That I just want to run off somewhere and do “things that I want to do”. That I want see the Great Big World, ASAP. But I realised something, just moments ago, as I was typing: the only permanent, constant, unwavering thing in my life for the past four years has been university. Throughout this time, I’ve changed addresses, instruments, gone through parental separations, had my sister move overseas (who is soon to graduate), succeeded and failed and fell in and out of love and hate with all sorts of things — and through all this, I’ve been at university.
For the longest time I’ve been bitter that my choice of conflicting paths meant an extra year tacked onto my time in what I consider a money-sucking institution. Whilst I will still view the place that way, I need to let that shittiness go, and just see it as more time to grow, rather than time spent being stuck.
Some things that I got up to in the last while (some of which involved photos yet to be produced, chemically, the old fashioned way):
When my sister was back in NZ over Christmas, we decided to do the Tongariro Crossing, with mum and the boy in tow. Or, realistically, the boy had us all in tow and helped hustle mum along towards the end, so we wouldn’t have to wait an extra hour for the second shuttle. It was a beautiful, beautiful day and I’m annoyed my Nikon F3 was broken and I had the wrong Contax lens and it was heavy and awful but I hope whatever photos I took will turn out well, once I save enough to get a huge batch of film developed.
I still suck at surfing but I can stand up alright and now it seems my biggest barrier to improving is the masses of other wave-users at Piha.
Riding bikes downhill in the forest isn’t my biggest forte but I hear I’m really brave because I lost skin but kept going anyway. I hope that really means I am a little brave because at times it got scary as fuck.
Meeting a lot of new people in a short space of time and having to remember their names. It’s so much easier for everyone at work to remember my name because there is only one of me. I have to confess that sometimes, right after someone speaks to me, I go on the company website to make sure I do indeed have the correct name-to-face.
Eating a ridiculous amount of ridiculously good food and trying to burn it all off without getting sunburnt.
I just want to put it out there that I really don’t like hate the way in which mental heath issues are ignorantly trivialised by many people. You hear people say “oh my god I am soooo depressed!” about their favourite restaurant being booked out, or people getting told, “you are sooo OCD!” because they value cleanliness more than the average person — the list goes on. It really irritates me. It makes me feel like mine, and other people’s mental health issues are undermined as merely a description of a fleeting problem, a hyperbolical description. Surely I’m not the only person out there who feels like their personal struggles are trivialised by these terms being casually misappropriated in popular culture and everyday use?
A few months ago, law school had a “Mental Health Awareness Day” which involved (via sponsorship, of course) a bouncy castle, warm fuzzy post-it notes, puppies for petting, etc. Needless to say, I was really unimpressed. Whilst it coincided with the release of a survey of law students (which unsurprisingly concluded that we are one of the most stressed faculties, and that many people develop mental health issues, or their previous difficulties worsened), none of this was the focal point. It really should have been called a “Stress Relief Day” or something a bit more mild. I realise that stress in itself is a serious problem, and it also exacerbates other mental health conditions, but the whole thing looked like a magical, colourful fun-day joke and I felt like it rudely trivialised the seriousness of other things caught under the umbrella term of “mental health.”
In happier matters, I recently did a photo shoot for some friends’ presskit:
This is it — there are 12 days before my recital and 19 days before my first law exam. And then, perhaps by November 13th I will be able to con myself into relaxing and not constantly refreshing the “exam results” page.
I’ve been quite sick this week (had a fever on Monday night which carried into Tuesday) and I’m going to attempt my first full-day at uni tomorrow, but it will be Friday already. Words can’t even begin to describe how stressed out I am. I know I signed up for this workload so I’ve got to see it through, but my god — how did I ever think my mind and body are supposed to come of this intact?! I’m 99.999% sure that what I’m doing is unprecedented as I’m taking the maximum law workload along with probably the most important paper in my entire jazz degree (since it includes my recital).
Anyway, to brighten my hopes a little, here is a list of things that I look forward to doing in the fortnight right after it’s all over. In no particular order:
Reading. I can’t wait to read. And read. And read. Recreationally. Without guilt as to what else Ishould be reading instead (i.e. law cases and textbooks). I will read in bed, on couches, in the sun, in the breeze, outside, inside, all night long until dawn — I will read!
Play hockey. I’ve been skipping summer hockey games because I need to attend other people’s recitals, or be studying or practising. I can’t wait to show up to a summer hockey game not exhausted from my long day, and get to stay late after the game drinking beers with my team. I’ll probably throw in “go to the gym” and general “exercise” here too. They don’t really warrant new points.
Writing. I have so many ideas that right now merely exist in some abbreviated, bullet-pointed form all over the place — in my phone, notebook, scattered on post-it notes, etc. I can already feel that I will be turning night and day around like I do every summer — reading and writing until dawn, then collapsing when the birds start chirping. It’s going to be amazing.
Drinking beer. That’s right, drinking beer gets its own bullet point here. I fucking love beer and I can’t wait to grab a box of cold beer and be popping them open in the sun, at barbecues, whilst cooking dinner. My god… nothing beats the feeling of a cold, cold beer on a hot spring/summer’s day. I’ll be scouring for sales of all the yummy, hopsy beers, mmm.
Beach. I don’t really care what kind of day at the beach it is at the moment, I just want to go to the beach. Be it to read a book, write some stuff, walk around, eat an ice block, drink a beer, read some more, tan, tan, tan, maybe even swim if it’s warm enough…
Spend all day with my cat. Self-explanatory.
Go to the art gallery again.
Take a shitton of photos. I need to get my camera fixed ASAP.
Remember that I love playing music and keep doing it. It’s not actually as much of a chore as I keep telling myself it feels like.
Listen to music all day and all night long.
Hang out with my friends and catch up with people.
This doesn’t fit within the “fortnight” criteria but oh my god I cannot wait until my sister is home in December. It will have been over a year since I last saw her by then.
Do other, spontaneous, miscellaneous, unexpected, stupid stuff. (Like suddenly leave without notice, maybe?)
Part of a series of photos I exhibited in August in three cities in Taiwan. I cropped this to be landscape for the sake of this post.
Bad things happen for probably no reason whatsoever, and I need to stop thinking about shit happening to me in terms of me “deserving” it because of karma. A tiny clink against the leg of my chair in the law library, and unbeknownst to me, my torts case book was destroyed, along with the bottom three lines of my moleskine notebook containing the past year’s worth of writing in fountain pen ink. Glass containers for water, eh. I usually stick to plastic, but on the one day that I— well anyway. I feel moronic that I’m copying my highlighting and handwritten notes from my soaked, half illegible torts book into the replacement I bought. I know I should just re-read it all but who has that kind of time when other cases remain completely unread?
The other really shit thing is that my beloved Nikon F3 (pictured above) is currently broken. A really stupid accident led to me being unable photograph myself being in the company of thousands of second hand books. And of course, you always miss what you don’t have, so all of a sudden there’s all these things and moments that I keep wanting to capture on film, but of course I have nothing on hand. My point-and-shoot film camera is also mysteriously out of action too.
The title of this post is from Black Moth Super Rainbow who I had on repeat the other night. Also reflects how I spent Saturday in bed nursing a hangover. Rare occurrence for me, as my friends kindly pointed out. I think that the cigarette some stranger offered us at a bar must’ve done it. I was fine and fun, up until that point.
It’s been a long time since the days where I was shooting concerts every week and sometimes I really miss it. But I’ve also been enjoying going along to gigs and being able to jump around and get messed up without having to worry about my gear or whether I’ve taken enough photos before I party. It’s mid-semester break at the moment but I’m still going non-stop. Either sleeping non-stop or trying to catch up on semester one, let alone semester two work, and I still haven’t fully committed to a set list for my graduation recital, which I must do, ASAP. The boy is getting admitted to the Bar in a few weeks’ time and later that evening we are going to see Disclosure. That’s going to be the only partying that will happen in September besides my mother’s milestone birthday, haha.
Oh yeah, my hockey team one the Women’s Div 1 Grade! It was only a week ago but seems like much more time has passed. I need to instill some kind of exercise routine if I want to maintain any hope of retaining some fitness. It’s such a shame that the season’s ended just as I was starting to feel completely game-fit, and could keep running and running without feeling the need to get subbed. I also started swimming again a couple of weeks ago, but my body’s really not used to those set of muscles, after replacing swimming with hockey back in 2007. My willpower also sucks and I know I always give up mentally before my body actually feels that tired or sore. It’s just really hard to be motivated and keep going when there isn’t a fast ball flying past me that I need to chase down, or a desire to win and to keep fighting for the sake of a team. But I want to keep fit so I don’t have to start the whole process of fitness from scratch again, come next season. We’ll have a title to defend by then!