Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Ljubljana Day 1 & 2

Summary

Transportation:
Got to Luton a night ahead, the train ticket from Sheffield was around £12.
Flew on WizzAir, tickets were £45+ booked a month ahead (WizzAir isn't as bad as it seems).
Transfer from the Airport to the city was €9 on a shuttle that you can catch just as you exit the arrival hall.

Accommodation:
Currently staying at DIC for €18 per night.
Link: http://hosteldic.com/SL/

Halal food:
There's one or two around the city.
Around 15 minutes walk from the hostel

Day 1

I headed to Luton Airport at 8pm, arrived around 11pm. Went into Luton and searched for a place to sit but there weren't any so I sat on the floor by the wall. I wanted to go through security but I had to get my visa checked so I had to stay out until the counter opened. Around 3, I was already lined up to get my visa checked and straight headed through security.  Went to the prayer room which was really nice, bigger than Stansted's and very comfy. Waited a while and boarded my plane.

I was on WizzAir and with WizzAir, if you booked priority, you're allowed bringing an extra bag so that's what I did. Felt pretty cool in the priority line but really, the only thing I got from that was get to go in the plane first. WizzAir was well more comfortable than the other budget flights that I've been on so I honestly don't get what everyone have been complaining about on the net. Honestly though, I've never been on Easyjet so we'll see how it goes because my return trip is on that. The landing of the aircraft was of Malindo standard - rough but I didn't die so it was overall a good flight though we were in the clouds for some time and I am scared of air pockets.

Arriving in Ljubljana, the first thing that came through my mind was how pretty the airport was! It wasn't grand or anything but it was a really nice airport. Got on the shuttle for €9 and headed to the hostel which was pretty far from the airport. I checked myself in and saw only 2 made beds out of 3 and was immediately excited because I only would have to deal with 1 roommate! I checked out the shared toilet and it was alright. Unpacked my all the things that I had in my mega small luggage bag and then went out to get myself shampoo. Pretty much most of the shops were closed since it was a Sunday so I was actually lucky to find one open about 800m away. I then went to sleep.

I woke up a bit later and got really bored so I went out since I heard people outside and hung around with them for a bit. My roommate, Cris, then came and so I came back into my room to just hang out with her. She's from Madrid and she's lovely! I went down to ask for an iron (which they don't have) and bumped into the people I hung out with earlier on. They asked me to join them watch football but I don't like football so I went back to my room to chill. A little bit later I went to see Naavya and we went out for iftar. Naavya apparently eats halal food because she grew up eating halal though she's an Indian since she lives in Qatar. The food we had wasn't too bad but I've had better. We went around Ljubljana and ended up in Cacao and had some amazing hot chocolate. I had one with vanilla ice cream in it, weird but surprisingly nice.

Day 2

I woke up a bit later than planned and took a shower in the shared bathroom. Shared as in shared with other people and also mixed gender (yo I was shocked as well). Went to the university with Cris and the bus was well packed. Registration, opening ceremony blablabla and then I went to get my free sim card. As I was done, the strap on my new fossil backpack that I've only started using yesterday snapped. So searching up for a fossil in Ljubljana, I headed to BTC City thinking that the actual store was there but there wasn't any. I ended up going to sportsdirect and just bought a new backpack.

Then I topped up my sim and had quite a tough time doing that because the guy didn't speak english but we managed. I immediately got my package or thought I did until the internet stopped working on me. So I basically wasted €12. I was honestly upset but it was an honest mistake because the text I got looked as if I have actually subscribed to the package... until I translated it that is. I went back to my room all tired and slept right until it was time for the International Cultural Evening. I went together with Cris but once we arrived, I went to hang out with the people from the UK. I felt really bad not bringing anything. I could've coordinated with them but they had a lot of stuff going on so I'm guessing it was alright.

They've all met yesterday I presume but they were so welcoming when I went to join them so I enjoyed that. They were also a very welcoming bunch so I reckon I'm going to have so much fun here. When it got a bit dark and I could eat, I went around nicking biscuits from here and there. I am very awkward around people but I was going around with Naomi, Zoe and Rosie and they included me in the conversations and I'm mega thankful for that.

I went to my first ever party. Naomi, Zoe, Rosie and I weren't really in the crowd and a lecturer approached us, checked our name tags out and was like "Ahhh. Brexit huh?" because we weren't in the crowd. It was actually pretty funny. We got quite bored awhile later so we headed back to town together with the other guys from the UK. Took the taxi and it was mega cheap! The taxi guy also gave us a discount which was really nice. Maybe it was because I talked to him and he was a muslim and it's the last day of Ramadhan and everything. We went to a bar and just chilled. I didn't get anything and no one questioned me which was so nice. I didn't have to explain anything and so no burden on me.

All in all, I met a bunch of cool people and I foresee a very fun 3 weeks ahead. We're planning a trip to Bled, just 9 of us instead of going with the tour and I'm honestly very excited for that.

Friday, June 3, 2016

What's up?

After years of not posting anything (what's new, Asma?), here's a post. 

My schedule has actually been packed with studying, watching dramas and exams! I've gone through 3 papers and I have another one left next Tuesday which I am mega excited about but I have yet to study for it. Honestly, I personally don't think that the papers were easy but I did manage to not skip out any questions for all of them (even though I do know that some of them were wrong while actually doing it). I left the exam hall with no regrets and that's what matters. 

Last Friday, I got a call from a company because of a summer programme that I applied for but because of my Dynamics paper (which I was very serabut about), I decided to postpone the phone interview (I'm guessing) to another day. The day came and I didn't get a phone call from them. So, every morning, I would wake up very early (8am early) just to make sure that if they do call, I would be fully awake. But I'm not going to get my hopes up on them calling me. 

I have a very packed summer break ahead which I am super excited for. The day after my last paper, I'll be heading to Cheshire Oaks with Hannah to shop and spend the money I don't have. I will then be going to Bosnia for a volunteering trip and maybe a short break in London. Followed by summer school in Slovenia. And only then will I be heading back to Malaysia. Celebrating (not really celebrating) Eid abroad, this year. 

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Pak Tok


I was never really close to my Pak Tok growing up, that may be because I only spent a little part of my childhood with him. But I've always looked up to him, I admired him from afar. I never told anyone but I used to get jealous when I see my cousins have conversations with him and mess about with him because it's something that I wasn't capable of doing.

However, I did have random small chats with him sometimes but they were never really proper deep conversations... because of how uncomfortable I was at speaking in Malay. But I still remember them so that's nice. Bet you didn't know that I started wearing my scarf properly because of him. This one time, I drank too much and too fast, he said that my cup was leaking because my drink was gone too quick. He used to also playfully hit me for fun because I'm mengada and would overreact. Bet he wished that we were proper close too. 

To make up for all the time that I didn't get to spend with my grandparents, I promised myself that I would save up enough money so that they could come to my graduation. But never did it cross my mind that Pak Tok wouldn't live long enough to see me graduate. Never did it cross my mind that he would be gone this early. I never really got to tell him that I love him, neither did I get to thank him for raising my dad so well or thank him for accepting my mum. On the days that I thought of him and my grandma, I never called. But I did get a hug from him before I left to come here and I'm honestly contented with that. 

Papa, Mami, Mak Tok, aunties, uncles, siblings and cousins, stay strong. Being back in Muar is going to feel so empty without him but we can't do anything about that except doa a lot. Pak Tok won't be there waiting for us to arrive anymore, he won't be there to wave us goodbye as we drive off home either. Someone has to take his role as an Imam now. We won't be able to hear his mega long doa after we pray. What are we going to do? How are we going to get through the days we spend at kampung?

I don't know what to do. I don't know what to feel. I don't know how to react. I've been crying but I don't understand what this feeling is? I don't think my mind has fully accepted this and I don't think it will. Not until I go back and feel his absence for myself. But don't worry everyone, I'm not going to dwell on this. I'm going to make all the time that I didn't get to spend with him because I'm here, worth it. 

Al-Fatihah.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Tough

Coming here, I knew that I would miss birthdays, weddings and celebrations. I expected them and I came to accept them. What I recently only came to realise is that I would also miss being there for my family and friends when they need me. Recently, Mak was admitted to the hospital and the fact that I couldn't be there to visit her and support her pained me so much. My grandaunt also just passed away but I was unable to at least go to her funeral. And just a few days back, my best friend had to go through something unimaginable.

Through all these events that happened in the past month, I realised that the most I could do was text those people. And that was it. It pains me so much that I know how much they're hurting and I know how much I'm needed but there's nothing that I could do about it.

J, I don't know how it feels. But I know that you're strong. The fact that you're keeping yourself together through those fake smiles, fake laughs and fake happiness makes me so upset because we can't be there for you. There's nothing that we can do for you but you hold it in there, we'll wait for the time when you can start expressing your feelings. No pressure. It takes time and we understand. We won't leave so it doesn't matter how long it takes, we'll be here. When we're all back in Malaysia, I promise that we'll be that comfort that you couldn't find where you are now. The only reason why I'm not personally telling you this is because I don't want you to feel obligated to reply because it's tough constructing sentences. Our prayers are with you. 

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Down Memory Lane


I left Cheetwood 8 years ago and yesterday, I went back and it felt surreal. When I left 8 years ago, I never thought that I'd ever step foot in that place again but I did. 

I was greeted by who I'm sure is Ms Louis (but I couldn't find her on the staff list) with a hug. She registered me in 13 years ago and she's still there now. It's amazing. I remember how I used to mind the phone whenever she had to go out for something during break time. Tina then came and she hasn't changed at all! I felt as if I was the only one who grew up. I entered the hall where we had our assemblies, lunches and P.E. classes in and it looked tiny compared to how I used to remember it. The artwork we did as a class back in Year 4 (or something) were still up on the walls and everything was just how it used to be. Just that they all seemed smaller. At the hall, I met Ms Fleet who is also Morgan's mum (my best friend back in primary). It took her quite awhile to remember me but she did in the end. I passed by Ms Clarke but I don't think she remembers me.The kitchen staff all looked familiar but I found out that Sue (who makes the best biscuits in the world) has retired. 

We then headed to the Nursery. I remembered the days when I was a buddy there. We went around that part of the school and I met Ms Mayer! Honestly, nothing has changed. Felt as if I time travelled back to 8 years ago. I went through to the Phase 2 section where the Year 3-6 classes are. Met Ms Sadiq and Ms Khan, Ms Khan was my teacher in Year 2. Went to my class in Year 5 and memories started flooding in. I still remember where I sat back then. Then went to my Year 4 class and the decals on the windows are still there. It was honestly just amazing. Going around school, there were teachers who said how Tina must've been a very good teacher for me to get to where I am today and I can't deny it, it's very true.

Went to Tina's office which was once Mr Kellet's office and there I found out that I was apparently the first set of students that Tina taught. Caught up with her just talking about her travels (she took a year off to travel) and how it was for me back in Malaysia. Ms Spooner then popped in and it was just really nice seeing her again. She said how when we were about to leave for Malaysia, they were saying how I'd come back here again in the future to study just like my Mum and who would've guessed that it'd come true. I however didn't get to meet Ms Beaumont which I'm pretty sure was because she was out at the pitches. 

But all in all, it was just amazing being able to go back to the place I learnt how to count. I mean, if it wasn't for Cheetwood, I reckon I wouldn't be here right now. Yesterday holds a very special place in my heart. Wanting to go back to Cheetwood was the thing that kept me motivated throughout school, college and university and I now feel as if I've accomplished one thing in life. 

I didn't record anything in school because I didn't feel as if it was appropriate to but I did go around Manchester and took videos of that. The next time I go back, I'll go to the houses that I used to live in, maybe go up to Crumpsall. But that'd be next time. 

I now have to pack for tomorrow morning.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Preachers

The first lab of the semester.
My whole body is still aching from snowboarding.
And I can't figure out how to get Facebook to display a proper photo when sharing a link.

Despite the fact that I can't move any parts of my body without saying ouch, I had a really good day today! I woke up quite early but got up late, skipping my tutorial session in the morning but went for my lecture at noon and saw how only half of the whole cohort turned up. Had rice and curry for lunch which was good because I feel as if I haven't had anything proper lately. Did my model in the computer lab (which was pretty packed) but figured how to improve my design which was wonderful! Every cloud has a silver lining, my design vanished yesterday but I came up with something better today.

Also met my tutor today to discuss my results. He called us in one by one. Loving the system, honestly. I remember how our results were posted up on a noticeboard back in college and only the ones who didn't do well had to see someone. But here, you have your own tutor that would see you whether you've done good or bad. Plus, they won't show your results to anyone else so you wouldn't even get the chance to feel insecure about it. 

However, when I did go in for my personal session, I was told that I did well and there was nothing to discuss. I left heading to the EEE department to book a feedback session for my EEE218 module (tak puas hati dengan results ke apa idek). Apparently, they don't do official ones mainly because people usually wouldn't want to have a feedback on that certain module so I now would have to personally email my module leader to set up an appointment. 

Leaving the Mappin Building, I was greeted by two people who started preaching (claiming that I looked a bit lost - but don't I always). One of them asked how my day was and what made me feel thankful today. I gave it a thought and realised that I wouldn't be able to even feel thankful if I didn't wake up this morning. So that was my answer, waking up. After telling them that, I realised how my positivity level is at its peak today. I'm not sure whether it's because of my results or because I got to exercise yesterday but I honestly did feel as if my mood was a bit off (in a good way).

By the expressions on their faces, they seemed pretty shocked by my answer. They proceeded to talk about how they believe that God sent us a new prophet to guide us in the messed up world we're living in today and how they've prayed to God to ask Him whether it's true that there's a new prophet, claiming that they've received the answer from God. I was then asked if I had time to pray together with them to ask God and get an answer on that. I rejected the offer and then went off happily, still thinking about how optimistic I feel.  

I would love to feel how I've been feeling today, everyday. 
Everyone would be so happy!

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Results + Winter Trip Video


A week and a half until my Spring break and I just uploaded my Winter trip video.
The video wasn't properly planned so it didn't turn out as good as I wanted it to.
To conclude, I'm not satisfied with it.

Being here taught me to be thankful. My results just came out and I knew that the Asma I once knew would have probably cried. She wouldn't have been satisfied with it. She would've complained to the whole world on how bad she did. She would whine and whine and go on and on about it. But I learnt to be thankful. It's either that or I learnt to lower down my expectations. I didn't do bad and I didn't do good but I have no regrets and I'm glad that I don't have to book a flight home for this Easter (so that I wouldn't have to go back during my summer break). As expected, I got the lowest for the paper that got me crying but it didn't turn out that bad. So I'm really thankful for that. I'm generally satisfied with my results just that I hope I could somehow increase my average in the future.

I personally know that my results would disappoint a few people and it has been confirmed that I have disappointed my crew because apparently they now think their "Ayam Tambatan" (heard it for the first time today) needs to be slaughtered. With how tough it is, I really couldn't promise that the future would be brighter in terms of my grades but I'll work hard up to the point that I won't have any regrets. A senior told me not to push myself too hard and I'm going to hold on to that because I'm not here to be upset with myself all the time, instead I'm here to learn.

I had a celebratory dinner in my room by myself of mi kari and I went snowboarding! Fell a lot of times, my bottom hurts and so does my knees but it was hella fun! Honestly can't wait for the next trip. However, the bridge model I made on Solidworks somehow vanished and I guess I just have to accept that and do another one again. Two assignments to submit next week and I'm not even a quarter way done with either of them. I foresee myself being stuck in the IC like the end of last semester. Just that I'm starting early this semester. May this bring improvements.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

SKY 2016

"SKY mana?"

Spending a Sunday in the Information Commons is not what anyone would think I'd do. 

Before I even arrived in Sheffield, I knew that I wanted to be a part of an event committee. I ended up joining SKY under the Media unit. Initially, I felt very burdened by it because it was something I've never done before but now, I'm thankful that I was given the chance to get out of my comfort zone. However, honestly speaking, I wouldn't want to be under the Media unit anymore after this. It's not really because of what I had to go through for SKY but designing is hard!

I still remember the first SKY meeting that I went to. I was the first one to arrive and I was there, waiting for everyone whilst complaining on twitter on how it's just so typical. People then started coming and I got nervous. I didn't know anyone! I just felt awkward. But then we sat in our units and I was with Arif. I think everyone introduced themselves but knowing me, I had already forgotten half of their names by the time the meeting ended.

Within 5 months, we had only a few meetings and for every meeting, I felt myself being the first one to leave once it's done. I didn't enjoy it at first. I didn't have anyone that I was particularly close to, everyone knew each other and I didn't. I didn't feel myself opening up to anyone. I felt distant, I didn't feel what I would've felt if they were my GEL fam. But then I thought about how long it took for GEL to actually feel that way for me.

However, now that the main part of SKY is over, I've realised how the people who were once just my acquaintances are now my friends. It saddens me every time I think about how after this, I wouldn't be seeing all these people anymore (unless I bump into them) because there's no longer a reason to. Part of me wishes that SKY could be extended just so that I could hang out with them. And I should really thank everyone for being able to be patient with how blur I can get sometimes.

I'm glad that I picked SKY over the other two events. And now I hope that the SKY committee would join the SG committee next year.

I should now get back to my FEA assignment. 
Hidup Mech Eng.


Monday, February 22, 2016

Picnic



The plan was to go on a picnic but everyone woke up around midday. Initially, we had food for the picnic but then the guys ate it all up. Ended up buying fast food from Medina and then headed to the Botanical Gardens where we ate and played something like dodge ball but not.

The weather was wonderful, it wasn't too cold and it only drizzled for a while. I enjoyed my weekend and I wish that every weekend would be as fun but you can't get everything that you wish for. I don't know whether it's just me but I feel as if my daily interactions with people really isn't enough. But last weekend made up for all of it. Therefore, thank you for coming, homies. Lets have more meet ups soon!


Sunday, February 21, 2016

Sheffield Malaysian Games 2016


Today was fun. So fun that I'm writing about it right before I end the day so I don't forget.

We headed to King Edward VII Lower School for SMG. I became a ball magnet. A basketball bounced off my head caused by a guy who sings really well! He even held out his hand to rub my head but then retracted it. (insert sad face) I then went around the venue where I saw a frozen Hannah and Azri who thought I came to support him. I proceeded to cheer for Sani because who is Azri again? It was in the football pitch that I was then hit in the shin with a football. Some time during the day, a ping pong ball just somehow decided to fly at me. 

As I was walking back to the main venue, Zubair called me from the court and I told him that I would meet him at the food place. Only problem was that his phone died so we ended up not being able to meet up at all! I had lunch with Fauzan and found a guy who seemed interested in SKY. Knowing that I wouldn't be able to attract him well enough, I got Syafiq to explain what SKY is to him. Quality over quantity. I also crossed path with my group mate from EYH but I was just too shy to tegur him. The regret is real. I met up with Nazhif as well who came to play football. His whole team was very very very very nice! As I was walking around the venue, I bumped into Fatimah and also saw this guy whom I met in London (Asyraf Said's friend) but I was also too shy to tegur him.

I had nasi kandar, 5 popias, a samosa and cendol. Nom nom nom. Cendol was so good. I would've bought 10 but it was £3 each. Caught up with Aiman who I haven't seen in ages! Went back home with Itik and hung out with him while finishing the food that everyone brought home with them. Had dinner at the other house... fried chicken and chips. Ubai was saying something about a university finding a cure for something. He was being very critical about it and that was when I realised how my thoughts are still immature. Fauzan then came (the guy clearly has too much time in his hands) and we hung out in the kitchen with Hannah and Amir. The guys in the living room were playing the "Bang bang bang, siapa mati?" game. I obviously had to go to the kitchen and get that thing going around. Ended up realising that the concept was different. Stayed til around 12.30am playing really random puzzles lead by Acap. It was annoyingly fun. 

(Favourite part of the day was actually when my KMKN homies and I hung out)

Tomorrow's plan is to go on a picnic. Hoping that it won't rain!

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Baked Tuna Pasta

Have you ever written a post and then deleted it by accident? Because I just did. Part of me hates myself but I have a lot of time in my hands. At least, I'm convinced that I do. Whilst everybody here is studying, thinking, searching for inspiration on what to write in their essay and thesis. I'm here trying to recall the post that I deleted.

I usually wouldn't stay in the diamond for more than half a day (excluding the EYH week) but I got out of my house very early this morning for a tutorial class which I could've just gone for a bit a later. I managed to convince my lazy ass that the earlier I leave the house, the more productive I'll be. Summing up today, I can say that it's partly true. Instead of sleeping, I actually did my tutorial during tutorial which is an improvement. Plus, I also managed to not sleep during the day. 

Yesterday was Amir's birthday. We held a birthday party that wasn't very much like a birthday party. Nobody wanted to sing for Amir and it was pretty depressing. Headed to 'my other house' around 4 to cook up some baked tuna pasta. We ended up making two roasters of it. We then proceeded to hang out until 10, reminiscing our KMKN days. It was refreshing. I haven't lepak-ed with a group of people for a while and so, catching up with my homies was fun. 

To make the title of this post significant, I shall state how Hannah and I made the Baked Tuna Pasta.

Ingredients:
Canned Tuna, Spaghetti Sauce, Pasta, Sriracha, Cheese, Eggs
Method:
Cook the pasta according to the instructions on the packet.
Heat and mix together the canned tuna, spaghetti sauce, sriracha and other seasonings to your taste.
Combine the pasta and the sauce together and keep on mixing it or something to cool it down.
Crack an egg or a few, according to how firm you'd like your baked pasta to be. The more you add, the firmer it'll be.
Top it up with cheese and bake it at gas mark 7 for 20 minutes or until it looks good enough to eat.
Hannah keeps on telling me that there's a ghost in my bedroom.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

2:2

It feels as if 'Week 2' was just last week. It isn't, however. Where did Week 3, Week 4, Week 5, ..., Week n go? Because now I'm back in Week 2. Week 2 of my second semester here in the University of Sheffield. 

My first semester was amazingly crazy. I praised this place so much but in the end, I realised how much I miss being back in Malaysia. Maybe I was so used to how easy my life was. I had my family around me. I had a home to go back to every time I got tired of studying. I had car rides to just complain about life to my parents. I had home cooked food to indulge in when I felt like it. I was surrounded by love and attention. I had GEL to ensure that I'm always productive. 

But it's no longer that easy here.

The only home I could go back to is the room that I live alone in. The complaining sessions are short and only happens once a week (and that is only if both my parents and I are not occupied with events). Home cooked food involves frozen food from the freezer. 

No one told me it would be this hard. 

I think I should start blogging regularly.