the debrief

i had expected to come home dead beat after this camp of mine over the easter weekend. with a statement like that, you know that i'm gonna tell you i'm not dead beat. *nodnod* em, you hit the nail on the head miss conference geek! i miss conferences.. i miss being involved. i miss being proactive. i miss being needed. maybe it's some unaddressed want to be accepted, to feel useful or maybe i just need that ego boost now and then to keep me afloat. whatever the case may be, i've gotten a double dose of conferences and mass gatherings of the intellectual and goofy kind recently and that's not good. i think i'm addicted =(

no words can describe the weekend... pictures and music, maybe. not quite tho. it's one of those things you have to be there for. the timetable lies as a string of words and numbers, meaningless to those who didn't hear the enlightening and sometimes whimsical speakers in person. the food was to die for and yes, it was all vegetarian. fried mantou, sushi and chinese veggie burgers represent only a minute proportion of the gastronomical delights. chinese veggie burgers i say, because for some insane reason, they taste like something outta those little brekkie shops in taiwan. nothing like the horrible veggie burger roll thingies they serve up at burger king or mickey dees!

a lot of things at the camp reminded me of home. the little things. warm welcomes. instant acceptance without preconceived judgements about a person per se. the quiet sneaking of little vitamin c tablets next to our bowls during meals. mass braiding sessions in the morning for those who couldn't braid their own pigtails - i felt like i had a football team of little sisters! lotsa smiles. lotsa encouragement. lotsa positive thinking. lotsa "it's ok"s. at the expense of sounding like a hippie transported from the flower power free love era, i've gotta say that there was hella lotta love in one place this weekend... the kind you feel when you've come back from a long tiring day to be greeted by the mother's cooking wafting through the air, where you walk into your bathroom and there are fresh soft fluffy towels, still slightly warm from the dryer, next to a new shower cap in your favorite color.

some of you may know about my fear of mass congregations of asians in general... maybe it's a banana complex, white on the inside, yellow on the outside but i attribute it more to the fact that i've had the worst luck when it comes to meeting fellow asians. i s'pose i come across as an ingrate, one who doesn't appreciate one's own race but don't get me wrong... i only have problems with asians as a collective entity. i know i'm generalizing, i know i'm stereotyping. indulge me... they travel in hordes. they talk real loud, second to the americans around here. here we go, fist in my mouth again.. oops. anyway, back to the asians. they bring with them the worst set of personal ethics and habits and leave the place worse off than a pigsty. sometimes they leave a coat of oil so thick that the next dorm occupant is surprised by the white kitchen tiles beneath the brown muck. you know, as a nice welcome gift for the next person. see what i mean about personal ethics? charming. maddenly so.

this was one of the few times that i liked being around asians. i liked finding similarities (and many did i find! my msn list is now half a foot longer and my memory lane now stretches a few miles further) with fellow taiwanese campers. i wanted to find more similarities, to find my little niche of belonging. this has nothing to do with the poor kenny bashing, really =) S reflected in a wave of amazement... "you know, this is the first time i've been in the company of so many taiwanese people!" and then she grinned as she saw the lightbulbs go off above the heads of each of us girlies in the bunk and produced similar grins too.

4 days and one firmer tummy later, thanks to the laughs.. i'm finally back in newie from my little chooq's maiden drive down the F3 to sydney in one piece. am dreading the next 4 days of this week, for that means class. looking very forward to anzac day next tuesday for all the wrong reasons but hey, holidays are scarce. you take what you can =)

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