Here we are at yet another New Year’s Eve, wondering where the hell the year went (or at least I am!). In a few hours more, we will be done with 2015, an occasion that I’m not quite sure how and what to feel about since it honestly feels like we just started on it.
In a nutshell, it has been a good year — of growth, of love, and a lot of fun. There were some setbacks and challenges but I’m glad to be able to say the good far outweighed the bad. I am immensely thankful that I saw another year with my family healthy and well, my friends safe and sound, my career growing and and smooth-sailing, and life in general, sweet and pleasant.
That’s all we can ask for, really — whatever else is a bonus.
Before things turn all sappy and melodramatic, let’s keep things upbeat by taking a look at some of the best highlights of my year! Because there’s nothing like going into a new year with good feelings and happy memories so whatever else follows can only keep up.
We ushered in 2015 in perhaps the best way ever — in the comforts of our home, with delicious home-cooked food and the most fun bunch of friends one can ask for. Why go out, get caught in traffic, spend exorbitant amounts on drinks when something so much more meaningful and fun can be attained at home, right? I don’t want to jinx it but I’m looking forward to another night as epic as this to bring in 2016.
In the first month of the year itself the party invites started coming in. Leading the way was Moet & Chandon with its Pink Rosé Imperial Auction Party that saw its pretty rosé imperial champagne flowing non-stop through the night. It was only the start of many to come.
2015 is also the year of concerts. Not just any concerts, but concerts of bands I’ve wanted to see all my life. New Found Glory was in town and I still can’t believe how close I came to almost missing them! I had no idea they were playing in KL until 3 days before the concert when the band’s official Facebook page posted the song lineup and my heart almost stopped. Surely the tickets would have been sold out or something. By some stroke of luck, we managed to procur tickets and it was an epic night reliving my teenaged years of angry lyrics, noisy guitar riffs and my obsession with bad ass tattoo-ed boys, heh.
Then came Chinese New Year, which without fail, always fills up my happy metre. Quality time with family, good food and angpaus? You must be mad to not like Chinese New Year! I put on weight, laughed too much, got some extra moolah to spend on materialistic objects of vanity, but most of all, was reminded how precious and important family means. You only have one in the world.
In March, I was invited to my first art exhibition that came complete with the full art exhibition launch works. Think fine wine, people staring at paintings while stroking their chins, barely decipherable whispers and mumbles of “Hmm, yes, quite…” topped off with a string quartet no less! It was an eye-opening experience and I certainly learned a lot about what art really means, getting to speak to the artist himself who happens to be one of the pioneers of the Malaysian fine art scene — Cheong Laitong.
Following that, we also made a short trip to Alice’s Wonderland when we tried out Shook!’s Mad Hatter champagne brunch. It was a delicious afternoon of ‘Eat Me’ cookies, ‘Drink Me’ potion and the whole Wonderland family walking around ready to take pictures with you, topped with as much champagne as you’d like. Let’s just say we left the place finally understanding why the Mad Hatter always walks and talks so funny hahaha!
April saw the return of Setia Alam’s annual pet fair and you bet we were there. Hello, it is our one chance to have the furriest and cuddliest fur babies all in one place where we can pet, hug, take photos and drown in their cuteness all we want; there’s no way we’re missing it! This is what happens to dog-lovers deprived of said dogs to love. We have no shame.
April was also made extra memorable by some apple cider, a couple of good friends and a good night of laughter thanks to 2 stand-up comedians courtesy of Somersby. This #ThatWeekendFeeling evening makes it to this list of highlights because I don’t remember laughing so hard or enjoying myself so tremendously. It was a delightfully fun, casual night in a very relaxed and non-pretentious kind of way. In other words, the best kind.
Who can forget the time in May when Tien, Yoshi, Josh and Amnesty decided to make a trip up to Penang? We did all the most typical touristy things from eating char koay teow and assam laksa to visiting the Kek Lok Si temple and buying Ghee Hiang biscuits hahaha. I’ve brought countless people around Penang and I must say, I don’t think I’ll ever tire of it. It lends me new eyes to see my hometown in new light.
Of course, May is also the Ninja’s birthday. Due to time constraints, I didn’t have enough time to plan a proper do for him ‘cept for a small get-together with his closest friends and business partners. I know, I’m the worst girlfriend ever T_T At least there was still some small element of surprise when he saw Tarvin at his favourite bar who also showed up with cake hehehe.
June was a really good month, one of the happiest if I may say so! After 3 long years (or was it 4?) my baby brother finally made a trip back home from the US and for the first time in a really long time, our family was complete again :D I think this is one of the biggest highlights of the year. We also got to meet Erin and they got to meet Mojo, it was a good week indeed.
Right after that, we shot off for the East Malaysia adventure of the lifetime — to celebrate Gawai in Sarawak. I will never forget our 5 days there and the things we got to see, taste, experience and feel. Sarawak is such a beautiful place with even more beautiful people and culture. I think what made it so much fun was also the company we went with. Angie and Belinda, thank you for being the coolest sports who were up for trying anything. Let us never forget the fateful night of a certain travelling stool.
July started off with a delightful trip to chilly Cameron Highlands with my mum, aunts and uncle. I’ve never been, believe it or not, and can finally see what the draw is. The air is crisp and fresh, the weather is the perfect degree of cool and the lush nature, beyond beautiful. I went on a jungle trek for the first time too and saw wonders I’ve only seen in textbooks. Definitely making a return trip if only for the steamboat!
It was also in July that after much persuasion, I finally relented and went to the batting cages for a small taste of baseball for the first time. It’s ironic how I’ve never once swung a bat — my dad plays softball and my boyfriend is a baseball fan yet I’ve never done more with a baseball bat than walk by it in sports shops. That one afternoon opened up a whole new level of fun. We vowed to go back because it’s not only good exercise and a great way to bond, it is a very healthy anger outlet too.
August, my beloved birthday month! We started it off with an amazing local production musical MUD the Musical and I loved every bit of it. The singing, choreography, story and overall production of it blew me away. I really wasn’t expecting something so mind-blowing! I walked out of the theatre never prouder of our country and especially this city of Kuala Lumpur which I now call home.
And in the sweetest gesture ever, the Ninja threw the best surprise birthday dinner for me at one of our favourite restaurants in town, Vin’s. Turning a year older had never felt more special than this — seeing all my closest and best friends gathered at the table and hearing them bellow “Surprise!” the moment I walked in. Yes, I have the best boyfriend ever.
September started off with an invite to the launch of a new, fun and highly mischievous whisky, Monkey Shoulder, in KL. The occasion was marked by all coolest things you’d typically find at a fun fair, like game booths and arcade game machines brought up a notch by a whisky bar at which you’re free to mix and concoct your own poison of choice. There was even a popcorn pool in which you can swim and do whatever you want!
Then came one of the most epic, life-defining nights of my life — the Bon Jovi Live in KL concert. I have been dying to see them since I was something like 11 or 12? Catching them live was everything I ever dreamed of; hearing in person the songs that I played on loop all these years and seeing the man in the flesh himself brought tears to my eyes, I’m not even shamed to admit it. This will forever be one of those nights I’ll remember for the rest of my life.
October proved to be just as fun with the my favourite beauty brand Urban Decay launching its first standalone store. We were among the lucky few to get to go the launch party which left me at the verge of hyperventilation upon arrival. It was an affair of all things Urban Decay — purple and black; feminine yet bad ass. It was super cool that we got to bring home real sweet Urban Decay goodies too!
And of course, October also marks another year I’ve worked with Malaysia’s premier and number one luxury magazine, Malaysia Tatler. My anniversary also happens to always coincide with the annual Tatler Ball so more reason to dress up and have fun while we work our asses (and feet) off that night. I must say, I really love my job. It gives me a lot of satisfaction and I get up raring to go every morning because of it. How many of us can say that? For that I will be forever grateful.
November is another milestone month, with me completing my 3rd full marathon at the Penang Bridge International Marathon. I can only muster enough strength and mental capacity to run one full marathon a year and it will always be the Penang Bridge one, for obvious reasons. It was a lot of pain, a lot of agony, but as always, the rewards are ten times the torment I go through. I always tell myself the last one will be the last, but here I am, contemplating to go again.
Here we are, nearing end of the year now. Bear with me. December, quite the contrary to all the excitement of previous months, was a very homely, cosy month, as if made for kindness and love. Fate led me to rescue the softest, fluffiest and cutest little kitten ever from right in the middle of the Jalan Duta highway. Though both the Ninja and I are dog people and though we have since given her away to a better home, Lucky the Highway Kitty have changed our perception on cats forever, and as such, will always have a place in our hearts. Her meows were the most heartwarming and her purrs, the most aww-inducing!
What’s December without Christmas, right? We decided to spend it in Penang this year after many years away and I must say, it was one of the best decisions ever. I got to spend quality time with family, catch up with really old friends, and above all, be reminded again the precious gift of having people to love and be loved. It was a good Christmas, the perfect note to cap off a good year.
We’re only a few more hours away from the dawn of a new year, I hope all of you can look back on this one and draw equally as many good memories. 2015 you’ve been good. 2016, let’s do better! :)
Happy New Year, everyone!