First Quarter Moon Aquarius

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Happy Aquarius season ♒︎ guys!

I haven’t been writing for a week here, the longest period since I started this blog last year. I am feeling a wee bit of a writer-FOMO, so here are some random observations I noted down in the journal recently —

I use a 400-page black Moleskine to journal. It was a birthday gift from Fafa. At first, I thought it would be my annual journal. But now, only five months in and having used up 3/4 of it, I think I will be getting myself a new journal for my half-birthday in March.

One of the reasons that I haven’t been writing much on the blog is because I am hitting a tarot-reading wall. For some reason, I have been feeling a little less excited about journaling about tarot recently. Not sure whether I am even allowed to say that, but that’s the truth. I have come up with solutions, though. I have started journaling tarot with prompts given by the Moon Void Tarot‘s creator, Stefanie Caponi to honor the Aquarius season (my Moon sign).

I also bought another tarot deck—my first-quarter purchase (hey, I lasted 20 days! Now, I have to go through the next 70-something days without buying another deck). It’s the Fifth Spirit Tarot which sits on top of my 2021 tarot deck list. Yesterday, I saw that Two Sided Tarot has it listed on their website and with only AUD10 shipping, I knew I shouldn’t wait any longer.

One last thing about tarot: I am looking for a tarot deck with continuity or a similar theme throughout the deck. The Moon Void Tarot deck has been the closest I’ve got, but the non-human court-cards broke the singular theme thing that it had going for it.

Even though I haven’t been writing much here, I have been compiling random notes I wrote here and there — paper and digital — into my Day One App. Maybe I can share some of the not-super-boring ones here?

Also, even though I haven’t been writing much, I have been running. I registered for a measly 10km run in October. That gets me going. I am clocking in 3km every run, but with an embarrassing pace to be shared here.

The last best coffee I had was well, not a coffee. We went to Brunswick last weekend to feast on a crab at Miss Katie’s Crab Shack. On the way back, we stopped at one of my favourite coffee shops in Melbourne for some sit-down coffee chai.

This month, I dreamt of Fafa bringing and or showing me a ladybug. Twice. Google told me that it’s a symbol of good luck.

This week, I tried a new Thai dish called Hor Mok for the first time. It’s steamed fish cooked with coconut cream, curry and basil leaf served banana leaf cup. I ordered it because it reminded me of Kerala Meen Pollichathu, but it tasted closer to Cambodian Fish Amok.

Yesterday, I found out that all this while I have been cooking and eating butter that has expired in 2019.

Today, I woke up reminiscing about my Uni time. Jik and I used to sneak into each others class. Even though we majored in different subjects and went to different Universities. And hers was more fun than my boring Accounting lectures.  Then, I realized that taking up CPA is like adopting the worst part of schooling-the studying and exam parts. Ugh!

I realize more and more that I am a creature of routines and rituals. So instead of ignoring it, I should use those things as a foundation of my daily life.

Half-naked yoga brings me joy.

♒︎K

Film Camera MjuII Kodak Colorplus 400 Mirror Selfie 2020 Meletos

2020 The Year I…

…Rang in the new year in Japan for the third time in a row. We had sushi and sake as the first meal of the year.

…Went to Bali for a weekend getaway. Now reflecting back, I am grateful we had the chance to travel outside of Australia this year.

…Started a new job in a new company.

…Practice with Miko, the first (second-hand) film camera I scored on eBay at the end of last year.

…Celebrated my friend’s, Liz, 30th birthday with a stay-cation in Mornington Peninsula.

…Self-isolated.

…Joined a witch coven.

…Bought my first ever indie tarot deck created by a female artist, then the second, then the third.

…Studied for CPA.

…Started liking black-coffee which no doubt is heavily influenced by Fafa.

…Finally enjoyed a good sandwich. It’s from Tivoli bakery on Toorak road which was introduced to me by Liz.

…Lived in lock-down for the most part of the year.

…Had a lengthy period of sadness from the combination of Covid and seasonal depression.

…Which made me pick up running.

…and cooking.

…and journal-ed as if my life depends on it.

…Got a tarot deck and oracle deck for birthday gifts from Fafa and Jik respectively.

…Had plenty of tarot readings.

…Deepen my tarot practice.

…Started a tarot blog then stopped because I thought I didn’t have that much to talk about in relation to tarot.

…Facetimed with my parents every single day from March onwards.

…Started this blog, a personal blog, but proceed to discuss mostly about tarot.

…Paid for a Google Photos account.

…Found out that Chiron has entered my chart since March and will stay there until the beginning of next year. Eek!!

…Finally read The Alchemist and generally read more books than last year.

…Stayed in a Mornington Peninsula airbnb.

…and in a Meletos winery in Yarra Valley.

…and in the farmhouse in Echuca where I took a boat trip along the famous Murray River.

…Went to an art gallery in Bendigo to celebrate our date-anniversary.

The Moon Singapore Bookshop

Postcard from The Moon

I am in a much better post-PMS mood.

We are in my latest favorite bookshop in Singapore, The Moon.

Fafa is sitting beside me, busy arranging timing with his former favorite hair-stylist to cut his invisible side bangs that has been bothering him throughout the day. I am writing this while waiting for the barista to prepare our coffee orders.

From here, I want to go outside and walk around so I can take mural pictures around Chinatown. But it’s so hot and humid, and we already have a hard time to breath; at least it doesn’t rain cats and dogs today (yet), and for that, I am grateful.

Today is also officially one year since we got the matching Torii gate tattoo by Ron Sugano in Tokyo, Japan.

Cup of Jo

The realization that I have immersed myself in Melbourne coffee culture came recently, when I ordered two flat whites: one strong, one weak, and a piccolo at Suzie Q, Sydney, without blinking an eye.

Not only did I not need to think about what coffee I wanted that day, but I was also well versed in others’ preferences. It made me pause. When did I become this person who didn’t need time to think what coffee I wanted for the day (I go through my tea choices carefully every night), who “needs” coffee before they can function in the morning (do I need tea before I can relax at the end of the day too?), who has a favorite coffee joint?

And apparently flat white has been my choice. Well, at least it means I get to tick off two of my geeky Melbourne goals; to find my coffee and coffee shop. But retrospectively, flat white and I shared an old love affair.

I found out about the existence of flat white when I first visited Australia in winter, almost three years ago. That was because the small coffee shop in Kings Cross didn’t have the hot latte. The owner suggested flat white instead. “It’s almost the same”, he said. I said okay, paid with coins, and sipped my first flat white.

I liked the taste of it, but it was nothing special at that time because to be completely honest, I was more into cheap booze (2 bottles of wine for $10 was unheard of where I came from), also we were on holiday! But even then, I managed to order a flat white here and there, usually during the mornings to lessen the hangover effect.

The revelation of me liking flat white more than normal coffee came during the last days of our trip, at 1400m above sea level. While wearing rented clothing from head to toe, I queued for a flat white, in the snow. If it is not love, I don’t know what is!

I am definitely not reaching my 10,000th flat white anytime soon, if anything, I am just about to cross the 100th cup. And I don’t know whether I want to cross the 10,000th.

Even thinking about it makes me feel jittery.

Time to brew some tea.

Mister Chai on Cuba Street Wellington

The quirky little food truck was managed by a french girl who was living in New Zealand. She was pretty and friendly which beat the whole French perception. We found it accidentally while strolling down Cuba Street. I told Fafa that we had to go there (even though we just had breakfast). I ordered a ginger peppermint herbal tea that kicked soon after while Fafa refused to get anything because it all seemed to Zen for him. Ngeh! I suspected it was the one that kept me fit while Fafa falls sick a day later.

Dunking Chocolate Chip Cookie into A Warm Glass of Milk at Moustache Auckland

Tell me, when was the last time you had a chocolate chip dunked into a bowl of milk? My guess must have been a long time ago. Me? I had it for the first time in my life here!

When I was young, Amma showed me how to do it, but I found it sickening. Even after seeing all those OREO types of an ad on T.V., I had never tempted. So when we came here after seeing a gazillion, I only ordered hot cocoa while Fafa ordered it. He offered me to try it. Knowing he wouldn’t stop before I did, I figured I’d bite the bullet and had a small bite. The cookie was crunchy with lots of warm gooey chocolate chips, and the milk was cold. It was an ORGASMIC combination—no other way to describe it. We then ordered two more cookies and came back the next day, and the next day after that.

Remedy Coffee in Auckland CBD

Unlike in Melbourne, where I immersed in the city’s coffee culture, even though the weather was considerably colder when we visited, I didn’t crave much for Auckland coffee. Instead, I kept asking for alternatives, while Fafa tried various types of caffeine. No, this wasn’t a complaint. I had the best times satisfying my sweet tooth. Among our pit stops, Remedy Coffee was my favourite one.

The Central Perk of Auckland. This little coffee shop was an excellent find tucked in the CBD area. It has everything required for a perfect coffee shop; coziness, exciting crowd, a decent menu, friendly staff, lots of books and games, sofa, window seats and outdoor seating. If I was an ex-pat, working as a sheep photographer, and living in Auckland, you could find me here at least three times a week, with my own sets of F.R.I.E.N.D.S. I ordered Honey+Lemon+Ginger here and tried to linger as long as we could. When you visit Remedy, please participate in their #mirrorselfie challenge. It’s a lot of fun and only a little embarrassing.

Retroespresso at Auckland Airport

We just reached New Zealand, and it was past midnight. Thankfully, there was food truck just outside of the airport which turned out to be a lifesaver for a shivering girl who stupidly packed her jacket in her suitcase.

It was the best hot best ginger lemon I have ever had.

The guy was super friendly; he waited patiently when I picked and changed my order a few times.

Let’s blame the indecisiveness on jet lag, shall we?