Hey guys! How ya doing? I promised to write a follow up article on my life in London, after the one I wrote back in December! So here it is! I wrote this while on the 13 hour flight back to Malaysia on Friday, but only uploaded it in conjunction with #MondayMuse- which you will come to learn about at the end of this post! Promise me you’ll read it to the end alright? =)
There is so much that I want to tell you right now. My head feels like it’s about to explode because the thoughts bursting from my mind is making so much noise! Hellloooo Fie’s head… would you please shut it??? Or at least… calm down! I can’t call Naim to tell him every meticulous detail about my first world’s problem because there is no cellular network here, much less a WiFi connection! I’m writing this from 238760917 feet above air, on a plain old, plain old Microsoft Word documents- in case you are still clueless about where ‘here’ is.
So with all my limitations of communication, I am pleased to let you know that you, dear readers, will be my temporary ‘ears’, because the only way I can contain my thoughts and self together is to express them- either literally or figuratively! If you are in need of a (hopefully) good form of entertainment to kick start your weekend, you’ve come to the write (pun intended) place mate!
But to not tire your eyes from my pretty extensive writing in a bit, I’ve decided to make this blogpost in chunks. There are 3 important messages I’d like to feed you today, and it shall begin with my (unpleasant) experience with British Airways and Terminal 5 (which is pretty fresh in my mind considering that my bum is still seated on the Britis Airways seat!). Shortly afterwards, you will be filled, rather emotionally, with my reflections on Lent/Summer Term i.e. the past and last term I had at the London School Of Economics as a Freshman! An outpour about my summer plans, hopes and aspirations will be the final element to end today’s post.
In less than 9 months, I think I’ve been flying to and fro London about 3 times. And all those 13-17 hour journey (depending on whether it’s a direct or transit) always begins or end at either Kuala Lumpur International Airport or Heathrow Terminal Four. Heathrow Terminal FOUR. But today the tables turned. I departed the british lands from the unfamiliar land of Heathrow Terminal 5. At a glance, Terminal 5 – an airport only for British Airways (or so I think)- obviously seems, and probably is, more exclusive than terminal 4 (which houses the airlines I usually fly with – Qatar & MAS) so I felt special. Until I checked-in my 30 KG luggage.
I was (as usual) late to the airport. BA 047 flight to KL was due to depart at 8:15 PM but at 7:00 PM I was still outside trying to shove 7 Kilos of things into Naim’s bag. Why, you may ask? Well…. I didn’t realised that British Airways’ checked-in baggage allowance was/is 23KG hahaha so I had to either (1) Pay off 65 pounds AKA about RM 300+ worth of $$$$ or (2) remove those 7 KGs. With penny-wise Naim in the picture, you could guess that I had no choice but to choose the latter option. After multiple back and forth trip to the weighing scale, my luggage successfully reduced to 23 KGs and hopefully, Naim will kindly bring back those left out 7 KGs for me when he comes back mid June hahaha! But on a more serious note, we were both actually furious. I get that it was my carelessness of not checking my baggage allowance earlier, but all the airlines I’ve flown with always, always have a 30KG limit! So the whole 23 KG issue definitely surprised us, especially since the British Airways does seem a lot superior than say, Malaysia Airlines!
We were also frustrated because we had zero supervision at the counter while we checked in my luggage! At Heathrow Terminal 5, there is barely any labour force! There are only a handful of baggage drop off counter with an actual living, breathing human in it, while the others are just the machine, the instruction and you. Let’s just say that Naim & I didn’t have the bestest experience utilising those ‘robot-like’ baggage drop off counters so if you ever happen to come to Heathrow Terminal 5, opt for those with humans! Don’t risk it, trust us!!! You should also arrive even earlier if you were to fly from Terminal 5 because the departure gates can be so flipping far! You better believe me since mine was one aero-train and a 15 min walk away!
As if my already horrible start wasn’t enough to punish me, the audio jack of my seat couldn’t work- hence, this blogpost was substituted for the movie I intended to watch i.e. Bridget Jones’ Baby. The cabin crew were all old, unlike the conventional image of a flight attendant and this prosed no problem to me. Except when they all became a little cranky because I couldn’t understand (or hear) their very thick English accent hahaha.
So there it is. My ‘first world problems’ at the airport. I already feel so much better venting it all out. Now on to the next section…
About my Lent/Summer Term at LSE
A question I get asked so often is ‘How do you balance your studies with Fitness and all the things you do on Social Media?’ and to be frank with you, I don’t know. Not anymore. I used to be able to juggle so the first two elements i.e. my studies and fitness so well because I was trained to train almost everyday since my primary-high school basketball career days. But when you put another mix- social media responsibilities- into my bowl, I couldn’t find the consistency. Not yet.
All the things you see me post on social media comes at an expense. I now know that it is at the expense of my studies. I didn’t do so well for my summer term and this isn’t the typical I did so bad = I’m going to get a B kind of scenario. This is really, really bad. It’s the kind of bad that instantly sucks your energy almost everyday because you become so so anxious, anticipating results day.
You see, I should be worrying if I don’t get a first class honours for my first year but instead, my fear has diverted to not fail any of my papers. Not flipping fail. I don’t think I’ve ever failed any core subject throughout my whole academic life so you can imagine the extreme decline of my intellectual performance thus far. It’s embarrassing to share it with you, especially since some of you may think more of me. But I don’t want to fake things on my social media platforms. If I succeed I tell you, then why should my struggles be kept a secret?
I had a huge pang of guilt and regret as I sat for my last 3 hour paper, Mathematical Methods (MA 100). I thought to myself, as I stared at the blank sheet of answer booklet: Why did I miss all my lectures and classes? Why didn’t I study enough? Why didn’t I complete all my exercises? It was depressing, really. Especially when you know you could have done so so much better to change your fate. Or when you realise that you’ve lied to yourself. Part of my resolution was to not miss any of my lectures and classes but even before the year could end, I already neglected that.
I also realised that I may have spent too much time with Naim at again, an expense. I now know that it is at the expense of my wholesome experience at LSE, and heck, his at UCL! Prior to coming to the UK, I remember instilling a hope to ‘not mix too much with Malaysians’ or something in the line of ‘make a lot of foreign friends’ and ironically, the total opposite happen. True, I may have met and been involved with a lot of University things like my POP Pilates and Netball, but most of the people I encountered remained as an arm’s length friend- like a hi-bye kind of relationship, nothing more or less. I’ve actually made a pretty close connection to a bunch of LSE girls (looking at you Sabeeka, Laura, Victoria and gang) at the beginning, where we’d go out and celebrate birthdays, have plans every weekend and even thought of living together in 2nd year. But towards the end of last term, I chickened out and decided to remain in my comfort zone- which is back in Naim’s and only Naim’s company. Luckily enough, he understood me perfectly but I know that deep down he must’ve wished that I could do my own things so that he could focus on his.
All my regrets of not ‘maximising my first year to its fullest’ really consumed me but now that I have penned down my emotions, I feel so much calmer and more sane. I don’t totally regret my whole first year as there were obviously some ups and downs but I just wished I could’ve done better. So if you are coming to LSE or entering any University for that matter soon, don’t make the mistakes I did. (1) Go to your lectures, classes and workshops- it will help you and especially, don’t leave everything to the last minute. Trust me, I’ve learned it the hard way. (2) Know your priorities in terms of what should come first, second and so on. This also comes with courage to say no to things that are piling up your plate! Earlier when I said that my Instagram, Blog and now Youtube were at the expense of my studies, I meant that as a mistake of my own. I LOOOVEEEE sharing my life online and seeing people online but my fault was that I put them all first before what should’ve been the number one focus i.e my academics. I also loooove working out and lucky enough, my fitness regime is not at all a stress to me because I’ve learned to put it as a hobby, rather than something I-must-do-or-else kind of perception- like I thought of my Social Media.
All that said, I just hope that this time, with solid evidence of my drop in performance (and probably a warning letter from YK & my parents’ dismay) that I’d actually get my shitzzzz together. Like for real guys. I am having a 4 months summer break now so you can say that next term, I’d get a fresh start; hopefully, a great one inshallah. I am just beyond lucky that my first year’s mark play a minuscule role for my entire degree classification so there really is room to change my fate- and don’t worry guys, I’ll keep you posted about everything 😉 Let’s start first with all the things I have planned for my summer.
About my Summer break
‘What time is it? Summer Time! School’s out, scream and shout!’
Heck yes, I am shouting- partly because I am nervous to get my grades on July 6th and the entire half is because I am excited for my summer! If all goes well inshallah, I’d be travelling to 3 different countries- of which one of them (Singapore), I’ve recently came back from! In July, I will set off for an 8 week exchange program in an Asian country with my pals from LSE and in mid-september, given that I reach my fundraising target, I’d be able to visit Tanzania to climb Kilimanjaro!
So from now till July, which is exactly about a month plus, I will be occupied with (in no particular order):
(1) Humans like my family, friends and Naim
(2) YouTube Videosssss!
(3) My Blog
(4) Project X Prep
(5) Celebrations like Ramadan and Eid
(6) Writing something secret!
The goal seems like a lot but I am confident that I’ll be able to slowly tick each one of my smaller plans since I no longer have academic obligations as of now. Number 1 & 5 is pretty self-explanatory and you can read all about number 4 here so let’s start with my plans for Youtube! I realised that you guys like a lot of my meal prep so I’ve actually brought back ALLLL my meal prep utensils so that I can hopefully film something related to that and definitely a few more! I am thinking of ‘stocking’ up my videos and have them pre-filmed and perhaps pre-edited so that by the time I get back n 2nd Year, all I could do is just upload! But I’m not too sure yet because obviously, there is only so much that I can film in a short span of time!
With respect to my Blog, I’m starting this thing called #MondayMuse, which is essentially a new blog post every Monday! I like anticipating things, and knowing when it actually happens so it’d be great if I could do it here as well! So every Sunday night, I’ll upload new contents on this blog and it can cover anything from a recipe to a life anecdote! That way, when you wake up the next day i.e. Monday, you can refresh my blog and read about something while you sip on a coffee! Sounds like the perfect way to beat those #MondayBlues! So don’t forget alright- come back EVERY Monday for new news every weeks =)
Lastly, for the ‘writing something secret’…. well you just have to watch this space! 🙂 Be sure to subscribe to my blog newsletter to be the first one to find out about it ! That’s all for today and as usual stay quirky!