Today is the 31st of December 2012, marking the end of another year! Even though I only started this blog 8 months ago in May, I have gotten to know so many cool and inspiring bloggers it really does make you feel like a community such as at GIG. Some of my readers may have known me longer than this blog so I also want to thank you for reading and popping a comment here and there! Once the blog turns 1 years old I will hold a special giveaway – this is my own motivation so that I don’t stop being creative!
I am so very thankful for everything that has happened to me for the past 12 months. The okay moments, the amazing moments, even the bad moments! Nothing has happened by luck, by chance or by fate as I know that God directs and determines my steps. The struggles, the failures – all necessary in shaping me into a stronger person. The joy, the happiness and the successes this past year have also been immensely gratifying. Truly it has been a mixed kind of year but here I am, still very much alive so I thank God for that
Here are some of my highlights of the year in no particular order:
#1 A Curtsy For Queen Elizabeth II
Oh yes I did! Back in June 2012, I and other barristers-to-be (Bar students) from Lincoln’s Inn had an advocacy weekend retreat (not) at Cumberland Lodge; which is an educational charity in the middle of the Great Park, Windsor. The same grounds that the Queen resides at some months of the year which is in Windsor Castle! The Queen who is a Patron there frequents the grounds to the Royal Chapel on Sundays for a Church of England service.
That weekend I was there, word came around that the Queen might be at the Royal Chapel for Sunday service! Of course, some preferred to stay back at Cumberland Lodge but I went because I attend church anyway. There was strict security, we were not allowed to bring any handphones or cameras into the grounds so we left it back in our rooms. Of course, by this time we were not sure if the Queen would actually be there! The inside of the Royal Chapel is somewhat small, for someone like the Queen to regularly attend. As us students, barristers and other members of Lincoln’s Inn were seated I couldn’t help but notice a policeman (in normal clothing) sitting on my right. So I asked him this: Morning! So…what is a policeman doing here in church? Policeman: Well, the Queen likes close security. Me: …what?? The Queen’s here???? *insert nearly hysteric whispers* You’re lying! Policeman: *laughs* If you get out early later, you just might catch her!
I really didn’t believe him, until I walked out after the service and there.she.was. THE QUEEN OF ENGLAND!! Us Bar Students were introduced to her and we separated into two lines for her to walk pass. She gave us her best wishes in our Bar studies and gave each and everyone a smile and nod! She had her biggest smile on and oh, her skin looks amazing for her age! It really felt like one of those celebrity moments! She was literally only 2 feet away from me, and the most natural thing was to do a curtsy. Oops. The Queen was most gracious, and she was decked top to bottom in pink! Pink hat, pink dress, pink bag…oh it was too cute.
After the whole commotion, Lincoln’s Inn-goers started heading back to Cumberland Lodge. As we were walking towards the gate, suddenly came the call: Step aside! The Queen! So we did. Then as we watched the royal entourage drive past, we couldn’t help but gawk at the Queen in her dark green hatchback Jaguar. SHE WAS AT THE WHEEL! The Queen. Driving one-handed. Her bodyguard having a good laugh next to her.
Too.awesome. Totally made my 4 years in UK!
#2 Spending More Time For DIY
A collage of some of my DIYs
DIY has pretty much saved my sanity at times, especially going through a particularly difficult and challenging year. I also started my own personal project called ‘Project Revamp‘ (look at the tab above) where I take old/broken/unused things, give it a revamp and rock it! It’s always satisfying to create something that you can appreciate, plus there’s the added satisfaction that it is appreciated by others! It has been a fun learning process (figuring out how to do things), and I do enjoy selling and giving my handmade goodies as presents too! I hope to be more creative in the following year and share them to you To see some of my easy peasy DIY tutorials, click here!
#3 My Likeness Made Into A Game Character For “Shiftling”
This game called ‘Shiftling’ by Team Sprocket, is the brainchild of a long-time friend of mine; Tristan. They are based also on Borneo Island, specifically in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah! I was honoured that my likeness was made into one of the main characters (seen above) I find the game interesting because it has drawn inspiration from Malaysian culture and folklore, while giving it a very modern look and feel. There are going to be great things ahead of this and I hope to share it with you very soon! The game is due to be released in the Fall of 2014 (not too long now!) so mark your calenders!
#4 Getting Through Bar School
Getting Called to the Bar at Lincoln’s Inn, London
I’ll be honest and say that Bar school was way tougher than Law school. The Bar (BPTC) which is the route to be a barrister in the UK is automatically recognised in Malaysia (we do not have to repeat a Bar course equivalent) unlike the LPC which is the route to being a solicitor in the UK (there are few exceptions). While in the UK there are more and easier-to-attain solicitor ‘training contracts’, it is not the same for barristers where there are only a hundred (more or less) ‘pupillage’ places in the UK. Which means hundreds will be competing with previous Bar graduates, etc. Well, you get the picture. Also, the Bar is definitely a lot harder than the LPC (not my words!). That is the reason why you would see more Malaysians doing the Bar even if they do not intend to practice as a barrister because Malaysia practices a fused system (lawyers are both solicitors and advocates) and not a separate system like in the UK.
Decked in a wig & gown (both too large for me) for my advocacy exam in Bar School
Basically, Bar School was fun but challenging in a nutshell. There were sleepless nights from daily deadlines and lots of tears (from feeling useless). Oh, lots. It did toughen me up though, and the skills you learn on the Bar course like advocacy is priceless. I’m not familiar on how they teach the students in Malaysia but I am sure it is not as practical as the way the UK Bar course is laid out. I also made great friends on the Bar course because it was so intense! All I can say that is…thank you God for everything!
#5 Visiting More Of Europe
I used to travel quite a bit during my undergraduate days but during the Bar course I had limited time. I did manage to slip in a eurotrip in the Summer before flying back to Borneo though!
- Budapest, Hungary
- Vienna, Austria
- Prague, Czech Republic
- Ljubljana, Slovenia
- Trieste & Venice, Italy
#6 Edinburgh Fringe Festival
My signed CD!
The biggest arts festival in the WORLD! I saw so many acts, and had a fantastic time. If you are ever in Edinburgh during the summer (July-August) you must not miss this! See all my entries on the festival here Meeting ‘The Blanks‘ aka. ‘Ted’s Band’ from hit TV series ‘Scrubs’ was especially memorable too
#7 Partying Off The Coast Of Trieste, Italy!
Taking a boat to head to this manmade island just to party in Italy’s furthest region is TOO COOL. Look at the view of Trieste behind us! Thank you bellas for making it a fun night The open-air club is called La Diga if you wanted to know!
#8 Part Of Production Team Of Glam & Glory’s Fashion Show In Perth, Australia
Posing with the models backstage at the Glam & Glory fashion show and yes, that’s how petite I am!
I still have not written about my experience as part of the Glam & Glory production team for my sister-in-law’s fashion show in Perth, Australia earlier this month! In the picture above I have a piece of important paper in hand (I was the cue ‘manager’ on stage), and wearing a customised design (I chose the colour in daffodil) from the collection! It was a lot of work (like Bar school) but so much more fun. I even liked the stress My fashionista sister-in-law has commented on this: Lawyer with a passion for fashion!
So those were some of my highlights of the year – what were yours?
Happy New Years’ Eve everybody and here’s to a mega year ahead! xx