What advice would you give to a younger self?

Saw this thread in the Vogue forums. This post made me laugh…and think:

“- don’t get a credit card. You’ll have a shopping problem.
– accept help from others. You’re not alone
– as lonely as you may be being the only single person out of all of your friends between 18-23, you’ll meet the most amazing man when you turn 24.
– the other half’s problems are with you. Just stay positive and supportive, and all will be well.
– don’t overload at uni when you have glandular fever. That will screw you over for the next six years.
– money isn’t the most important thing in the world
– learn to forgive people. Nurturing grudges will make you very, very ill.
– remember that no matter how bad things get, your family are always there. You don’t have to tell them everything, but they’ll be there.
– parking fines and speeding fines are a waste of money
– don’t buy things on impulse
– seek professional help when you need it. Don’t think your psych degree will protect you. Especially after you swallow two bottles of prescription pills.
– look in the mirror and smile. Better still, smile at people. Even if you’re just brushing past them in the supermarket
– patience is a virtue
– learn to say sorry
– allow yourself time to be sad and time to grieve. Holding everything in causes a mental breakdown at age 18, 20, 21, 22, 22 and a 1/2, 23……
– quit your job when you feel it’s right. Procrastinating gets you nowhere.
– deep breathes

– don’t watch season 3 of Masterchef. Dani will give you the *****
– don’t curse the sky when it rains. For some reason you’ll be rained on every time you step out the door over the next few weeks
– don’t text and drive. Or play with your iPad when you drive
– tell the other half you love him when you feel it’s right. Procrastinating only ends up with a blubbery gargle of random words
– don’t impulse shop – what are you going to do with the hot pink vest in your wardrobe when you realize you only really wear black?
– wear heels as early on as possible so that you can wear heels to your bosses wedding without dying.
– manicures are important. Or at least, take something to strengthen your nails.
– whatever you do, no matter how cheap it is, don’t fly Tiger”

What advice would you give to your younger self?



I love everything about this kitchen. The black and white colour coordination, the dark wooden floors and most of all, the addition of an aluminium trolley. Somewhere between industrial and cozy.




Don’t think I can make my appointments this week :(


Things my mother has taught me

Things my mother has taught me, many of which I’m still learning, but am eternally grateful for knowing.

1. It’s better for someone to be in your debt rather than be indebted to someone.

2. No matter how much you despise someone, never show it to them. If you can avoid it, never show it to others either.

3. Be kind to everyone. If you cannot be kind, at least be friendly.

4. Avoid conflict. Be patient and calm even if the other person is completely irrational.

5. Always smile.

My take on Cairo


‘No thanks.’

‘Why not?’

‘We already have one.’



‘It’s 190 pounds.’

‘But it says 120 on your website.’

‘That’s when you book on the web.’

‘190 covers everything. Tip to driver also.’


It turned out that 190 Egyptian pounds did not cover everything. Nor did the driver try to cover his curiosity for a couple of Asians. Conversed in very broken English and equally bad Arabic, we finally found the hotel in the absolute chaos that was Cairo’s early morning traffic.

This was Cairo in a nutshell. The hot weather, pollution, horrendous traffic, and people trying to make a few quick bucks off the tourists.

There are no doubts about it, Cairo was not my favourite city. But amidst all this chaos, Cairo extended its welcome in the most fortuitous ways.

getting sick in Cairo

I managed to fall ill the next day we arrived in Cairo. Even after a long sleepless night, I was determined not to miss the pyramids.  I felt great in the first couple of hours touring the pyramids, having a go at riding the camels (which was much higher off the ground than I had imagined) and braving the heat around the complex with little shade. Leaving the pyramids, the food poisoning finally caught up with me and I got horribly sick when we stopped over at a service station for refreshments. So it was at the back of this servo that a young employee noticed this girl chucking her guts out. He immediately went back inside and came out with a thick wad of tissues. I managed to stop throwing up long enough to utter a shokrun.

Totally unexpected, simple but touching gesture.

night time Cairo

After a week in Aswan and Luxor, we came back to Cairo via the most disgusting overnight train known to men. Even Cairo was a welcoming sight. I spent the day doing some papyrus and linen shopping by myself because Ben, surprise surprise, was sick. Our group decided to go out to a posh place for dinner. I was quite fed up with Cairo by the time I reached the restaurant by myself, having had enough of the traffic and the greedy taxi driver.

But I immediately fell in love with this restaurant situated at the tip of Zamalek, next to the Nile, without a single sound of car horn! The white shade sails, white linen covered wicker chairs and tables, groups of Caironese smoking sheesha – it was utter calm and relaxation. I had a great meal (mixed grill) and a lot of freshly squeezed juice.

I had to catch another taxi back to the hotel by myself. Driving through the Cairo cityscape at night, it was a completely different city. Gone were the traffic jams and sight of the bland and dilapidated buildings. The city was alive, in a different way, with young people dressed in dazzling party outfits, and hundreds of neon lights from boats and buildings bouncing off the Nile.

I was once again taken aback by this remarkable city. The taxi driver’s incessant personal questions and radical driving did not even bother me.

The parting

He grumbled something inaudible and set off in the other direction without another word. Even with his wonderfully sculpted back turned, she could feel his piercing gaze continue to torment her with contempt. After almost four years of pure bliss and rough patches, after all they have been through, her decision tonight was swift and callous.

She sighed and remembered the countless evenings when they travelled to faraway places; she would lie peacefully in his embrace and forget all the worries in the world. Minutes ticked by, though time would seem to stop in their own little world. She wished she could stop the clock now. One final attempt at explanation and a final farewell. If only he understood that he was irreplaceable, because there is nothing like a first true love.

Was this the right decision, letting go? He always treated her well, better than what she offered in return. Maybe he would find someone better, someone who would love him just like how she loved him.

She almost called out after him, but he already disappeared into the night, his taillights shining fiercely in the dark. She obligingly moved away, and couldn’t help but smile at the sight of the new blue Rexy. Absolutely no regrets!