Monday, January 30, 2006

be not afraid.

I love you because the entire universe conspired to help me find you.

and that is that, folks.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

year of the dog.

happy lunar new year! gong hei fatt choi! lots of love from the flappy and the bean. :)


So I check the weather wherever you are
'Cos I want to know if you can see the stars tonight
That'll be my only right

falling asleep with a smile upon my lips. :)

happy new year to one and all.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

spoils of war.

happy 20th birthday dear fellow 3stani mosses! many many happy returns! :)

3stanis without liwei!

3stanis without alvin! boo, we didn't get a photo of everyone.

and one of the activities i like best (and miss most and will miss even more soon), having lunch with the girl with the funky hair and the boy with the selfish car. i.e. marian leow and marcus ong. we went to purvis street for hainanese food! carmen (mari's MGS pal) was around too.

looking at these photos, i'm suddenly subdued, suddenly sad. will miss the three dear friends who are leaving for australia next month.

we are a pair to behold, indeed.

Thursday, January 26, 2006


fell on my back in LT29 yesterday. my coccygeal (tailbone) area is now pretty sore. hope i didn't injure anything. :(

today started out like any other lazy, hazy day. midday, and there was a little storm in the teacup of my heart. but when eventide approached, i was once again reminded of how blessed i truly am. and how much i love, surely.

Ubi caritas, et amor. Ubi caritas, deus ibi est. -- Where you find true love and charity, God is there.

am glad europe plans are underway. one month spent wandering around places whose languages we don't speak. one month with the whole world to ourselves. yum, june will be good.

and i've run out of bandwidth on photobucket, that's why my nice blog header image is gone. drat. anyone has an idea on what i can do?

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

alex takes nice photos II.

couldn't resist posting these, since pangs is borrowing the dvd from me tomorrow. :)

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

testing the facial nerve.

Physical : Findings of facial paralysis are easily recognizable on physical examination. A careful, complete examination excludes other possible causes of facial paralysis. Strongly consider other etiologies if all branches of the facial nerve are not affected.

  • The classic definition of Bell palsy describes mononeuric involvement of the facial nerve, yet other cranial nerves are probably affected. The facial nerve is the only cranial nerve eliciting obvious findings on physical examination because of its unique anatomical course from the brain to the lateral face.

  • Remember that weakness and/or paralysis from involvement of the facial nerve manifests as weakness of the entire face (upper and lower) on the affected side. Focus attention on the voluntary movement of the upper part of the face on the affected side.

  • In supranuclear lesions such as a cortical stroke (upper motor neuron; above the facial nucleus in the pons), the upper third of the face is spared while the lower two thirds are paralyzed. The orbicularis, frontalis, and corrugator muscles are innervated bilaterally, which explains the pattern of facial paralysis.

  • Test other cranial nerves; their examination results should be normal.

  • Tympanic membranes should not be inflamed; presence of infection raises possibility of complicated otitis media.


    because i'm cranky today. boooo too much work, too many kaoshis!
  • Monday, January 23, 2006

    my funny valentine.

    these quiet afternoons should never, ever go away. i'll cherish them for as long as i can.

    i love having time to listen to nice music whilst fiddling with craft.

    mmmmu. :)

    and, ear candy from jars of clay - for your download.

    Sunday, January 22, 2006

    love, that all gentle hearts so quickly know.

    awww my 03s75, i'm loving you guys always. :) am really going to miss mari and madd when they leave next month...

    and i promise to be less missing-in-action, though the exams are in six weeks! this reminds me that i haven't looked at my histology text in a while. drat!

    You know when you've found it
    There's something I've learnt
    'Cause you feel it when they take it away

    Saturday, January 21, 2006

    alex takes nice photos.

    tell it like you still believe.

    Counting my blessings like stars in the sky
    The sleepwalking moon watching on
    And she's seen how lovers before us have tried
    My darling, let's not get it wrong
    If it's the be all and end all
    Then come on now love, let's make a start

    happy, happy birthday! :) may this year be as beautiful and special as i have wished for you.

    Tuesday, January 17, 2006

    classroom in yunnan.

    Posted by Picasa awww i love this, thank you pangs senior for taking such nice candid shots! and that little girl's face bathed in the sunlight, now that's magical. :)

    some days, i'm really grateful for the little pills and how they let me sleep like a baby, lost to the cacophony of the world. well i am down the flu now and need the rest, yadda.

    Sunday, January 15, 2006

    piggy love.

     Posted by Picasa


    Across a city from you, I'm with you
    just as an August night
    moony, inlet - warm, seabathed, I watched you sleep,
    the scrubbed, sheenless wood of the dressing - table
    cluttered with our brushes, books, vials in the moonlight -
    or a salt - mist orchard, lying at your side
    watching red sunset through the screendoors of the cabin,
    G minor Mozart on the tape - recorder,
    falling asleep to the music of the sea.
    This island of Manhattan is wide enough
    of both of us, and narrow:
    I can hear your breath tonight, I know how your face
    lies upturned, the halflight tracing
    your generous, delicate mouth
    where grief and laughter sleep together.

    Adrienne Rich.

    Tuesday, January 10, 2006

    what i've learnt in china, and 2005.

    xianghaian, yunnan, china

    truly, my decision to go to 雲南 was made without lofty ideals in mind. i wanted to see how poor people with disabilities support themselves, not just in day to day living but on an emotional level. i wanted to spend my holidays meaningfully. i wanted to see china and breathe chinese air once more, having been bitten by the travel bug earlier last year. i wanted to experience god in a different way. and that was all, i didn't have any ideas about changing the world, or even changing someone else's life dramatically. it would be hard, i considered, being given only two weeks and being ill-equipped with language.

    the trip did not completely change my views, but instead, led me to see things in a different light.

    i learnt that god provides, however harsh life can be. we visited a lepers' village, two hours away from kunming. the history of the village goes that to contain leprosy in the region, the chinese government took out all the lepers and planted them in a village on a hill, treating them agressively with antibiotics. today, most of the village's inhabitants have been cured of the disease, but the stigma remains. people are still afraid to touch them, afraid of coming into contact with the deadly bacteria. visiting as medical students meant that we were informed, and thus knew the proper safety measures if someone we came across had festering sores. in other words, there was nothing to be afraid of and nothing to overcome but our own inhibitions at reaching out to touch another person.

    in my mind, a room remains. the room reeked strongly of urine, which was all over the ground. in the corner of that room was an old wooden bed, and on that bed sat an old man. he was ninety-seven, partially deaf and completely blind. he was dirty, probably having not taken a bath for months. i noticed small particles of vommit on his shirt. he did not hear me coming in as i joined my counsellor ningyi. do you dare touch him, ningyi asked. yes i do, i replied feebly, half afraid of myself and trying to ignore the smell of the urine. the old man took my hands, running his hands over the creases, feeling every little nook and cranny. it was at this moment that i was aware of a strange magic between us. i had never felt so close to another human being i had only met a few minutes ago. the old man smiled, and i felt an instant warmth flood my heart. later, when everyone had left, i stood at his doorway, thinking about what ningyi had told me about how hardly anyone came to hold this old man's hands. then i realised, god loves this old leper too. in his little ways unbeknownst to us, god gives his heart rest.

    above all, the lepers at xiang hai an loved life. instead of being bitter, they accepted their fate and set up their own community, supporting each other. consolidating our own experiences with the lepers later that night back in kunming medical college, we realised how much these people really looked out for each other. how much they loved god and drew strength from him. it made me think that people all around the world live with disabilities, may it be leprosy or poverty, but god provides, and people cope in their own ways.

    before my trip, i always thought that if i had alot of cash to spare, i would not know who to give this cash to. lepers in china, orphans in india, even cancer patients back home... there would be too many groups of poor people to consider. i thought, it would be hard to control the funds to these people too, with the many layers of red tape to get through and the dishonest people who feed themselves off this money on the way.

    dr tan lai yong, a singaporean doctor doing community work in yunnan, made me realise that you don't need large projects with alot of funding to help someone else. he was a medical doctor, but he also directed irrigation projects in the villages, sent funds for the building of new mud paths and so on, basically helping to improve their quality of life in general. dr tan was more than their doctor, he was their friend and their angel. he made me see that everyone starts small, taking baby steps, but if everyone makes an effort to make that start, there's whole lot we can do for people who need our help in the world.

    the children in 雲南 were different from any of those i've met before. they were farmers' children, thus they faced futures very different from those of our own. futures that were likely resigned to working with dad and mom on the farm. yet, they showed a simple, cheerful outlook to life. through their gestures and words, they made all of us feel welcome in a foreign land. through their songs and peals of laughter, they opened my eyes to their lives. the children made me see that above all, love is the most wonderful gift you can give to another person. for it is only through love that we can bring joy to another person's heart. love is patient, love is kind. money can be spent, finances bled dry, but no one forgets love. and truly, we should not forget showing those back home how much we care. there is so much one can do with a little bit of love.

    i went to china with a really good bunch of people. on our first night in the mountains, two members of our team were taken ill. i remember standing outside my room in the darkness and cold, watching caleb and some seniors bring them to a more central location. my morale dipped, instantly i felt like i was too faraway from home. but the morning light did eventually come. and i grew to love living with the twenty-five other singaporeans i had come to china with. trying weird eats together, making light about not being able to bathe for five days, finding our way around the mountain with torchlights when it was dark, braving the near-zero temperatures without heating, late night circle of trust gatherings, sleeping close to each other for warmth, washing our clothes and hanging them on the tree branches, brushing our teeth with tap water that tasted strongly of iron, getting hot water from the kitchen to wash our faces, picking out dirt and mud from each other's hair, sharing moisturiser and lip balm, using the bushes behind the guys' house as our temporary toilet, sitting outside in the pitch blackness under a sky filled with stars... i was out of my comfort zone, but oh in such interesting ways! and now, these are experiences i will always cherish.

    in 2005, i chose my path in life. what i think about this path will probably change over the next few years. i understand, that i may become disillusioned and confused along the way. but i hope that i will remember that (in dr tan's words) medicine is a privilege. to be able to help someone on so many levels is a blessing that does not come to many. thus i should never cease working hard, that someday in the future i will be able to give aid to those who need it.

    i bade farewell to a good number of people i cared about in 2005. and the goodbyes continue to 2006. zhuanghui leaves again tonight, mari, madd and waiye leave in february. this goodbye is not forever, of course, but we are sad, because we lose the you-at-this-moment-in-time feeling that can never be replaced. in my heart, i hold all our memories dear and even though we may change, we will have our sweet memories to return to.

    party on the rooftop in yunnan, china

    i am glad to be alive, glad to love and to be loved.

    I'll sing to You Lord, a hymn of love
    For Your faithfulness to me
    I'm carried in everlasting arms
    You never let me go, through it all

    Sunday, January 08, 2006


    some happy shots from the last week of the holidays.

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    the 3stanis go to fish & co!

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    henghui, zhui and vi come over with lots of food, glorious food. ack, supersized me.

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    jingyi comes over later and helps finish the food.

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    the 3stanis come to casuarina for prata! very near my house.

    let us remember that as holidays in medical school are few and far between, these were a nice four weeks that we will always look back upon fondly. :) hee. see y'all in school tomorrow.

    Saturday, January 07, 2006

    wrap my words around you.

    Should I even let you know
    This song's about you girl
    Just because I want to see you smile today
    And my words may bind you
    To me much too tightly
    You may choke on them if we fall apart
    It's not fair to write a song to a woman
    Because a woman takes a song into her heart

    So let me wrap my words around you
    Wrap my words around you
    Wrap my words around you
    Till you stay, till you stay, let me
    Wrap my words around you
    Wrap my words around you
    Darling, wrap my words around you
    Till you stay
    Would it play with your heart?

    Friday, January 06, 2006

    heart of my own heart, whatever befall.

    the first week of the new year brought so many surprises, so many things to ruminate upon.

    i am reminded to stay strong, to have faith, and to remember my innate nature of being a happy bean.

    thanks y'all for popping by today with so much good food. :) bean hearts you!

    Wednesday, January 04, 2006

    2005, sweet as green apples.

    2005, the year i landed my first job.

    with michael ma of indochine.

    2005, the year i got bitten bad by the travel bug.

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    2005, the year i chose my path in life, and learnt how much there is for me to learn.

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    2005, the year in which i cherished old friendships and built new ones.

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    couldn't include everyone, though i really wanted to. i couldn't find all your photos! and if i didn't like how i looked in them, they're probably not here too. haha. :)

    2005, the year i trusted, and prayed.

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    2005, the year i learnt what's truly important.

    i have a very apt photo for this erm, section. but it's in caleb's computer, so i shall leave this section devoid of photographs and my thoughts for now. that's for another entry.

    and 2005, the year something really good happened to two people.

    :) here's to another great year.