#11 Shambling into light

Thank you for your messages of concern and heart emojis in response to my last letter. 

I am well. I've adapted to shopping twice a week—once on bike for fresh greens, once on foot for others . I'm covered head to toe in deliberately mismatched attire to keep out people, mosquitoes and the raging sun during the quietest (read: hottest 32C/ 90F) time of the day when others retreat to the sensible comfort of air condition and 56" tv. I'm rewarded with empty street and shy visitors in larger numbers than usual. They are kingfishers, grey herons, monitor lizards, and numerous very vocal birds I can't name. 

Listen / watch

Homemade toasts, tropical fruits, expresso and Franz Ferdinand's Always Ascending fuel me with energy and hope to start the day, everyday.

To combat the slump which comes right after breakfast after reading the news, we dance to Bubblegum Pop Classics. ‘We’ meaning me+one beakie for each song. Hot Chocolate's You Sexy Thing, Bon Jovi's It's My Life, Kiss's Rock and Roll All Night & Frankie Valli’s Grease were all cliches I used to cringed at and now enjoy enormously. Is it the company? or catastrophe?

It's hard to find anything to watch lately. Can't decide if I want to be given false hope, to escape to fantasy, to dive deep into reality, or just dance the scary feelings away. Mersal has it all with suspense, magic, action, interrogation, romance, social-politics, it is serious and ludicrous all at once, and they even burst into song and dance ever so often. Fantastic way to tame 2h40min.


This article writes about the book that writes about author JA Baker who writes the book about the Peregrine which is really about himself. Phew. It puts into words the reasons I draw animals and stitch beakies, if compulsively—blurring the boundaries between the observer and the observed.

A warning from history about simultaneous disaster got me thinking if the virus is already nature's strike 1?

Wendell Berry's Stay Home is more layered in meaning now than ever.

The Discomfort of Evening by Marieke Lucas Rijneveld is true to it's name, a very uncomfortable read. The emptiness echoes in it's own chamber. However, I don't regret reading it. It expands my experience of being human.

Eat/ drink

The infrequent shopping threw my fruit inventory out of whack, fruits ripening faster/ slower than I need them, but never when I want to eat them. As a result, I'm drinking smoothies every day, balancing overipe mango with crunchy bananas and calamansi, pineapple so sweet they taste canned, with coconut shavings and more calamansi.

Fav eat this week is summer roll. On softened rice paper, smear a good glob of my no-longer-a-secret simple sauce (peanut butter, minced garlic, soy sauce, bird’s eye chillis, brown sugar & lime juice), topped with pan fried tempeh, julienned any-crunchy vegetable (I used cucumber, carrot, cabbage, onions) with fresh basil, cilantro, mint, roll and eat. Goes well with the tropical smoothies in the previous paragraph.

In progress

I wanted koala. Perhaps like JA Baker the author mentioned above, I somehow want to be the animal. I want to hug a tree and not let go.

But beakies chart their own course once fabric is stitched into any form. My intentions are good, but mine. She hers, also good, I respect that.

On the left I drew to ‘see’ koalas, on the right I drew to see this fabric koala.

Japanese chin is exorbitant grouchiness stuffed into a tiny pack of fluffiness.

Above are some of the beakies that will be up for adoptions. More beakies to come after I've spent enough time knowing them. 

Beakies and I floating together in the river of life, separately, I'm behind the camera, marn.