your next bold move (one more time)
(jan 4, 2003)

listening: three marlenas the wallflowers, see you soon coldplay
reading: between mexico and poland lily brett


I'm certain that I saw two members of Blue, that UK boyband, when I was going on my evening stroll down Southgate earlier today. The first one I saw was the youngest one, I think, I can never remember their names, the one that I've been telling my housemate looks a bit like David Duchovny, had David Duchovny been blonde when he was 18 (or 17 or 19). I've always thought he's the cutest one in the band. He was walking down Southgate in the opposite direction, looking taller and not as scrawny as he does on TV. I thought, wow, this guy really looks like that cute guy from Blue! But the lack of trail of screaming teenage girls behind him made me dismiss that thought. He was probably just a local who kinda looked like that guy from Blue. Also I didn't stare for too long to be sure, so he wouldn't think that I stalk boyband member lookalikes.

Then as I walked a little bit more, I saw another Blue member chatting away in a cafe! Gasp! The black one (I don't mean to be a pig-headed racist, I wanted to be politically-correct and call him African-American, but obviously, Blue, hailing from UK, he's not American, and I don't know his name. Maybe we can call him Mark, for political-correctness sake. There's always a Mark in a boyband, isn't there? Though I can't say for certain which boyband.). So, *Mark* was sporting an afro, he looked a bit different than he does on TV with it, but it has to be *Mark*! What are the chances of seeing two boyband member lookalikes in the span of five minutes? Then when I was on my way back I saw the cute blonde young David Duchovny again, walking in the opposite direction I was walking. This time I really stared to make sure. Well, kinda, I'm never the staring type. Well, not when the other person notices that I'm staring. I think he did. He looked a little disconcerted. Maybe he got lost.

Two boyband members in one evening stroll. Not bad. And it's not even Human Nature.


I've been taking a lot of strolls lately. Just walking around in the city. I took a lot of strolls before, for the last three years, but these few days there's some kind of focused intentness that I attach to these walks. It's as if I'm working on a project. I get restless inside the apartment. I feel guilty not being out. I have to take a walk outside, in the city, taking in the city air, its architectural details, its scheme of colours, its noise, its pace. I want my skin to chafe with the many quirks of its people, the buskers, the unhinged, the ones who stop to pat a complete stranger's dog, the ones who stop to admire the street artists' work, the street artist explaining her work, the two girls who ran in the rain, one of them shouting "Oh, my hair!", giggling and rubbing their newly-shaven heads, the mother who said to her child, this child couldn't be more than five or six, very gently and seriously, "What are you insinuating?" (I bet the child will be amazing at Spelling Bee comps when he starts school), the office girls sharing their relationship problems (the locals talk at a level where you don't have to eavesdrop to eavesdrop), the guy who hollered at a girl and deservedly got a "piss off", the girl who cried and said something quite dramatic (I can't remember what) to her boyfriend at the traffic light, all of this and more. I want them to become adhesive to me. I want to get all of them under my skin so they can't leave. Because I am.

I just want to make sure I'll never forget.


Then of course, comes the very taxing (at least to me) issue of packing. I haven't started. Not one smallest thing. Except for taking off some Post-It notes from around my monitor and throwing them in the bin. Just thinking about it tires me. I look at all my stuff and their disorderliness defeats me. When I was moving out of my old studio apartment, my housemate, the one I was going to move in with, came over to help me pack, putting away my things one by one, while I stare helplessly at the boxes. She's back in Malaysia now so I'm wondering who else can I force ask to help me pack all this mess.

I can do this! I promise myself I'll start on Monday. I give myself 3-4 days to complete this task, all-out, zealous-packing-madness. I'll be stripping and snipping off the brown packing tape, ripping off the bubble wrap from its roll, arms all stretched out, lifting, wrapping and organizing things, and making as much packing-related noise as possible. I have a mental image of myself hard at work, a packing dynamo that will put FedEx to shame, little snips of brown tape on each fingertips, chest-deep in boxes now.

Maybe I should call someone to help.


A friend asked if I'm going to keep doing this website thing after I've gotten back home and started working. I told him I most probably would, office gossips and cranky clients would be so much more fun to write! But between then and now, the idea has lost some of its appeal. I'm not too sure why. I've been thinking about it, stopping writing here for good, more seriously over the last week. I love writing here, it's probably kept me sane and regulated my sleeping hours more often than I realized, but it was beginning to feel like work at times. I have learned to dread it at times. It is hard to write, especially when you're writing something of a journal, and not get personal. Sometimes I read some of the previous entries, and thought, shit, I've said too much. And stop writing for weeks because I was still beating myself over the last entry. But I never took down any of the entries I've put up, no matter how revealing I think they are. If I started doing that, if I started pruning and trimming and censoring, then the keepsake will be incomplete. I don't want to look back and just see the happy stories.

This particular bit is beginning to feel really personal as well. I'm amazed at how much I've let you, Reader, (yeah, all five of you!) into some very detailed snapshots of my life. Sometimes I can't believe what I put in here. Some things I never tell even my closest, oldest friends. Thing is, if you ask any of my friends, I mean, real-life friends, (except if you're one of them, reading this, what are you doing here???!!! This is totally embarrassing.) 'reserved' is what they'd use to describe me. So yeah, you see, a little bit of personality schism going on here.

Maybe I was just writing these entries so I have a keepsake for my three years here. I realized I only started writing for this section when I first came to Melbourne, so maybe the last entry should be when I leave it for good. nondecaf was actually meant to be something else, it was supposed to serve more as a portfolio than a journal, but it totally took a life of its own during the last three years. I can't believe I wrote close to a hundred entries, with all kinds of stories, plus all those horrible mushy things I dare not call poems, some of them excruciatingly personal, over the last three years! Somebody get me an agent! (I know other people have written a hell lot more, but you see, I'm very lazy.) I'm kinda proud of myself for having stuck with this for this long. Three years. I don't think I've ever stayed with anything that's not required by law, or sponsorship contract, for three years. Commitment has never been my strong suit. I can barely stay with one perfume. These days I rotate between three.

So yeah, I don't know if this is going to be the last entry ever for nondecaf, it may very well not be, given how fickle I am. Maybe this is just the packing stress talking. If that's the case, then you're going to have to forgive me for pulling something like this and ignore the last three paragraphs.

So, I guess, if this is goodbye, goodbye, then. It's been fun.


So long, Melbourne. It's annoying how much I'm going to miss you.


previous entry: back to bachelor (december 25, 2002)