Saturday, February 28, 2015

LINKS: February's top 10

I shouldn't be saying "this month's" because I got back home on Feb 12th, after being in Taiwan and San Francisco & spending most of my time being offline. However, since I still had a couple of weeks of uni break & was only going to work one of my part time jobs, I spent a huge amount of time going through blogs and other web pages- which totally compensated my time spent offline. So, going through my latest pins and pocket adds, I found that the most interesting February links were the following ones (they were not sorted by any particular way):

Photo by Blake Little
If you're not quite used to DSLRs or if you're still learning about photography, these sheets will be very useful to you.

Food for thought.

I've been a fan of everything Ali Mese posts for a while now, but this list is just exceptionally spectacular.

Good tips on personal finance. Good publishing timing, too, considering the year's just started.

6. 7 Ways to Practice Emotional First Aid - Personal / Self-help 
Those things that everyone already knows, but never really cared about. They're important. 

As a contributor to Taste of Cinema, I'm going to pick one list each month & share it with you. I picked this one because aside from being a fan of animated films (I'm really picky about them, though), it features Grave of the Fireflies, a heartbreaking, soul-wrenching all-time favourite of mine. 
Grave of the Fireflies scene. Property of Shihchosa, Tokuma Shoten and other copyright holders.
Although this was published in January, I only came across it a couple of weeks ago. BuzzFeed made a very interesting video. Food for thought. 

I don't like it when people make lists and specify a gender. I really don't like it. Makes no sense to me. Anyways, whilst going through this list, I noticed that I'd read most of the books and they were really good. So I'm going out on a limb here & add that men should read some of these books too, because they are awesome. Here are 5 books of the list that I really recommend: 
  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
  • Drinking Coffee Elsewhere by Z.Z. Packer
  • Willful Creatures by Aimee Bender
  • Broken Harbor by Tana French
  • A Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan
  • To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
It was difficult for me to choose an article from the many ones that were written about Graham Moore's acceptance speech. It was more difficult to choose an acceptance speech to pick an article about, since this year's Oscars were flooded with equality/minorities speeches - something I adored, btw. Nonetheless, here's one of the reasons I picked this article for my favourite February links list:
There are days that I can’t see the progress I’ve made. Sometimes, I still feel like that weird, strange, different girl. Sometimes, I still feel silenced, scared, and alone. That’s why I loved what Graham said in his speech. He reminded me that it’s okay to be different, it’s great to be weird, and that I do have a place where I belong. I belong with my family, with my boyfriend, and the handful of friends I’ve found who accept me for who I am. And I belong in this world as much as anyone else does.

What were the most interesting pages/articles you stumbled across during February?


Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Yummy in Taiwan: Melange Café (Taipei)

While in Taipei, my aunt took me to a "very yummy waffle place" (her words). It was already 3pm when we got there, and we still had to put our names on the waiting list.  

I kept wondering "Why would anybody wait such a long time just to get some waffles?", because I was very hungry - and I get impatient when I'm hungry. I just wanted to walk across the street and grab something at a random 7-11. Little did I know...

About half an hour later, we walked in and we sat down. The whole atmosphere was different. Classy, finesse, elegant were some of the words that came to mind when I was offered a menu by a very nice waitress. Their menu had English and Japanese translations on each option. 

Melange Café's bar has a very beautiful, smooth and white marble top counter, and the whole place has a pleasant European cafe feeling. I also enjoyed the fact that, despite being full, it wasn't very noisy - maybe it's a general taiwanese thing, people don't speak very loud..

Since we'd gone there for lunch and I hadn't had proper breakfast on that particular day, we ordered their chicken sandwiches and their traditional strawberry waffles. 

The sandwiches were very good - not too salty, not too heavy. Same for the strawberry waffles - they weren't very sweet, which is something I love (not a big fan of very sweet things), and there was plenty ice cream/strawberry syrup for you to mix with the waffles, so they wouldnt be very dry. 

I think 70% of their menu were beverages options - something the staff takes pride on. Nobody ever walks in there without ordering something to drink. I had their passion fruit/iced green tea thingy. It was ok - not that great, not bad either, around 4USD. But it looked good, just like everything else they bring to your table.

The place was packed with people in their early twenties ordering a bunch of food and eating only 30% of what they had ordered. Why do they do that?

It was quite pleasant - and not that pricey. I'd recommend this place for tourists because it's a very famous spot in Taipei, just right off the Zhongshan MRT Station (exit #2) and they have menus in English. However, be prepared to wait around 30 minutes to get a seat if you're going during lunch/dinner time on weekends and holidays. They don't take reservations.

Definitely going back there when I'm in Taipei again.

Do you guys know any yummy waffle places in your city? Maybe I'll go on a waffle-eating world tour someday..!

Monday, February 16, 2015

Beginning (or restarting..?)

I always get super excited!!!!!! when I finish editing a blog's layout and publish said blog for the whole wide world to see it. I make a list of things I want to write about, I promise myself "I shall not abandon this blog, blahblahblah". 

A Creepy Mess, Lost in Yin Yang, Sensible Derangement, Cynic and Critic. These are a few names of blogs I had the past 2 and a half years. My online life was a reflection of my real life: roller coaster crazy. Finishing high school; trying to sort out majors; dating someone mostly because I was so damn scared to be alone when entering adulthood; hating my body; trying to find peace in a messy routine of work + study. Etc. All in a 2,5-year period. 

Then wisdom came to me. I decided to quit bloggin' until I had something figured out. I lived abroad for a couple of months and it was so fantastic. I learned so much - about places, people, but, most importantly, about myself. I'd dare say that I have figured 40% of myself out - which is saying a lot.

Looking back at last year's resolutions (obviously published in one of those blogs), it seemed like 2014 had been a very fulfilling year. I'd achieved everything I had planned - well, except going back to the gym. But, seriously, it was crazy, because I only started to focus on my 2014 resolutions in September. Which means, yep, I did everything in 3 months. Maybe not the best way to put your new year's resolutions into actions. 

So, I'll take things slow this year. My resolution for 2015 is one and only: to take proper care of myself. Stop putting my health at the sideshow just because it's hard to fit it in my work/study routine. Sounds quite egocentric, but it's something I have to do after spending the past years dedicating myself to people who could've been better to me. 

words at dawn will be a space in which I'll share little bits of the randomness and journey of self-acceptance/care/love mentioned above.

Edit: I shall import some of my old and most read posts from my old blogs to this one :)

 photo 2015-02-142002.35.05201_zpsirg3bu4i.jpg

Hope you'll enjoy it :)