Thursday, November 26, 2009
As i watched an old but remodernised film of Charles Dickens' classic, "Great Expectations" I suddenly find myself fascinated by the character of Miss Havisham. Now in the novel, she was the wealthy, old and eccentric woman who brandished her adopted daughter Estella like a crucible, a weapon that would crush men's hearts, the scalpel that would slice through skin and flesh as vengeance for the emotions that were shattered inside her core. In the story she invites Pip, an orphan who lives with his unkind sister and her husband, to her house to entertain her and Estella. She entices Pip to Estella and with Estella's wily ways, he develops an attraction for her. This attraction goes further into their adulthood. He has placed Estella on a pedestal and considered her a template of womanhood perfected. But Estella, the pupil has been taught well. She gives some but withholds a lot from Pip. She tantalizes him into emotional immersion but never imparts her own share of passion. This was exactly the plan hatched by Miss Havisham......to make pawns of these two creatures - in a Machiavellian plot that she thought would be salve for her thorned ego....
I fear ending up as a Miss Havisham. Somehow the circumstances that led towards her eternal disdain and remorse of MALEkind is too painful to picture. Can you imagine being made up and dressed as the most beautiful woman in your life on your wedding day only to be abandoned by your groom and husband-to-be at the very last minute in the midst of invited guests? Left at the altar all alone to soak up the sighs of pity from people both close and foreign to you? A reception full of food and bounty ready to nourish the wedding guests only to be left cold and withered in the aftermath of the tremors? Time standing still and the shock too enormous to absorb? I would lose my mind. She did! I would tear up the whole room and stop all the clocks at twenty past nine....That's what she did too!
She was a woman trapped in time...literally. She stopped the clock at the exact time she read the letter from her lover. She retreated to her own capsule. A cocoon of flimsy and diaphanous dresses and gowns. Of exaggerated, glitzy, colorful and flamboyant makeup... a huge effort at imitating beauty but interpreted as jesterish to outsiders looking in.... this was the illusion Miss Havisham immersed herself in. A most effective mechanism to salvage whatever sanity was left in her.
Surrounding herself with pretty, dainty objects inside her room, the rest of the house she lived in became haunted and cursed with that one single moment of that single day in her past which had broken her. It was filthy, dark and unattended to. Wild plants had ravaged her garden and the insides of her house. They were like a primeval warning to all visitors - do not come in. The furniture inside the house had been whittled down to bare existence. The most incongruous objets d'art were found in the reception hall. The glasses, the tables, the carpet and the gigantic wedding cake, the piece de resistance of that grim day....
Fortunately or unfortunately she had found a vessel in Estella. her adopted daughter. Her wealth had helped maintain Estella's lessons of etiquette and decorum. Her beauty was her biggest asset though. She was one who would make men grovel at her feet. And Miss Havisham was determined to take full advantage of that. She wanted to instill coldness inside the young girl so that she could exact cruelty on men who were willing to give themselves to her. Estella was her alter-ego, but more sophisticated, less giving, unemotional and quite devious. She was consumed with making men suffer for that single defining moment that wrenched her heart..
But in the end Miss Havisham's protege falls. The threads of the veil of sophistication and coldness in Estella unravels. Estella had fumbled into relationship after relationship of conveniences, which was never enough. The matryoshka-esque armor fashioned for her by Miss Havisham crumbles and the real Estella came out. She is lonely and sad in the end. Pip's enduring love for her has won. Coincidence brought them both together again and they start anew.....Miss Havisham catches fire in a freak accident but is saved by Pip himself. She then dies from the injuries inflicted on her by the burning.
The end of Miss Havisham is riddled with vagueness but I think how Dickens wrote her end out is symbolic in itself. She was a crafty and almost evil persona. She used others to feed her inadequacy and to heal her own issues. She literally burned into oblivion because her cause may have been good but her intentions were evil and involved destroying two people who were probably the closest to her heart at that time - Pip and Estella. I cannot blame her though. She was a victim. Her existence stopped at the very moment love turned its back on her. She would forever be typecast in literary history as the eccentric, and wealthy spinster whose heart was stuck at twenty minutes before nine o'clock....
Monday, November 23, 2009
Life is beautiful!!! When you are young, adventurous and you dare to go out of the box, your existence is extended to borders that always help you learn something new...
Ahhh the things that happen to me in China!
How do I begin? Dumplings! I am always one whose curiosity is boundless and I will always dare to do things that most tourists would not do here. I am not saying I'm going into anything as hardcore as living the and embracing the lifestyle of the Chinese as many Western expats do. But for the average tourist I can say I am a risk-taker. Of course I try to be very hands-on when I'm trying to explore a certain place, experience the sights and sounds, and mingle with the inhabitants. This is why my travels to China are never boring!
Going back to dumplings, my curiosity about the existence of genuine Chinese cuisine has led me to explore the culinary delights that Shanghai has to offer. I would want to eat almost anything except toads and tortoises! Now we all know that dumplings are as common as bicycles here in China. They are almost the symbol of Chinese food if I am allowed to say so. I am a great fan of these tiny delicious objects sold in almost every kitchenette in every corner in Shanghai! I eat them from a soup bowl, from takeaway plastic containers, from sticks...but yesterday dumplings took their vengeance on me!
Crazy as I am, I was enticed to buy these beautiful, simmering, scrumptious things. They were dumplings of course. I thought i would be able to translate to the man cooking them that I wanted to buy three pieces. Now we all know the language chasm that exists between English speakers and the Chinese. I would have guessed he misinterpreted my hand signals and he dumped about 12 of them and put them in a plastic container. My guess is that this is maximum for a single order LOL
When I tried to eat them as I would eat any normal dumpling I was shocked to see some kind of juice, which I think was oil, oozing out of them when I poked a chopstick at one. The whole thing like exploded and messed in my hand hahahaha! It was so funny because I was in a sidewalk where people were passing by. Never have I felt more embarrassed than at that moment! Hahaha. It was like a sudden spotlight was cast on me and me alone. I was prepared for the dagger of stares from the people who were offended at me sacrilegiously crushing a national symbol of China!
An occasional glance was thrown my way but surprisingly nothing resembling a laugh or a snicker! The world seemed to still be rotating at its own axis, the people going about their daily lives. Students walking home from university and office clerks waiting for the bus at the stop...everything seemed normal-ish! Ahhhh yes thank God for Chinese habits! Why? Because many Chinese do anything everywhere. They eat food, drink, pee in the isolated corners, spit, sneeze, pick their nose and many other sanitary offenses in public!!! My minor offense or accident would have been nothing to them haha except for one thing probably...I hold chopsticks the wrong way! Haha I am sure I do make the effort of holding it the right way but it never ceases to amaze me how girls in coats and high heels eat large fritters of anything using a chopstick while walking with the speed of a trotting dog!
I will definitely write more as I have more time to spend here in Shanghai and also Beijing. The cold has not deterred me from exploring and walking around which has become a well-known habit throughout my travels. So if you see a tallish Asian lass with a heavy coat and with eyes darting around and constantly taking in both the mundane and extraordinary sights and scenarios around her...you may have come across the big bad Winklergirl!!!
Sunday, November 15, 2009
i know my tastes in men are not impeccable haha but hey CUTE is defined by the beholder sillies!!!!!!!!!
I love a lot of guys in sports and I'm telling you I've fallen hard for many of them hehehe
Lately I have been concerned about my fitness so I have started kicking myself in the ass and hitting the courts near where I live again...:) And it's amazingly coincidental how a week after I rekindle my love affair with Le Badminton, the use of rackets to hit shuttlecocks (my how I looooove cocks!!!) into strategic positions, I find this cutie on television and on the net!!! Sooooooo have I finally found inspiration to maintain my longevity on this sport for good? We shall see, we shall see....heheeh
Let's take a peek into my current crush's curriculum vitae???? :P (click on the picture to see full-size)
My my I really have a thing for guys who are slimmish.....:P
I always fall for a man with ''ARMS'' and ''LEGS''!!!!!! LOL
Check out the footwork!!!!!
This is what champions are made of...overhead smashes!!!!!!!
Hmmm..... I can't speak German so can somebody translate these for me? One thing I notice though, the person in question doesn't have the same staccato-ish accent most German guys have? Maybe that adds to his cuteness???? Hahahahhahahaha
Now I want to marry him!!!!!!!! Hahahahahahahhahha
Or someone who looks like him? *hint* *hint* :)
Sunday, November 8, 2009
This is seriously one of the most enchanting places I have ever seen. This is the stuff postcards, film scenes and gossamer Morphean creations are made of. I would say this is probably one place that would shelter a wounded Indiana Jones when running from pursuing Nazis in one of his world-wide treks for arcane treasures. Or where Rudyard Kipling's part-animal part-humanoid fictional characters would be born and raised. Or where a future religious icon would begin developing and practicing his genius and seeing the Divinities through his own eyes....Ahh my imagination runs amok!
A utopia of spirituality and silence, a haven for the weary traveller would best describe this place...
Seriously I CAN and WANT to live in a place like this when I become weary of life's battles I think. Live a life of ascetism and deep spirituality, subsist on simplistic food,survive in austere conditions...I guess I would gladly embrace it as long as i have inner peace and satisfaction throughout the rest of my short life...hehehe
Can you guess where this place is? hehehe
Note: Thank you to Mark and to his site http://www.pbase.com/jemski/ for his excellent pictures!!!!
Thursday, November 5, 2009
I have no idea what led me to touch base again with my badminton buddies. I hadn't seen them for a long time and naturally hadn't kept in touch during that time. But then refuting my first statement think I know what made me kept in touch right back with them again. My buddy's wife died and I guess I hate to say it's a wakeup call with regards to the getting-in-touch part of life.
Well the sadder part, and I hate to say there is a more melancholic event than his wife's passing, is that I just learned that my best bud in the badminton circles, my doubles partner and one who was always ready to go in for the kill when my game was falling apart, had died several months ago without my knowing it until now!
This is depressing for me because the closeness was not that apparent but there was definitely a bond there. I knew we could have been closer if I had chosen to but I chose not to because of confidence that time was on my side. It's like teetering close to the edge of a cliff knowing that you can make it if you jump but not jumping because you know the gap will always be there for you. It doesn't make much sense now but even this event doesn't make much sense to me. He was relatively young, sprite, athletic and very personable. I knew little of his off-court activities and I am not one who would snoop around so I always assumed he was as contented in his personal life as he looked to me whenever we were playing.
He was a personality unto himself. He was funny, loud, hilarious, driven, strong, dynamic and his stamina was unforgiving. I would find myself gasping for breath between long points and he made everything seem easy. And the thing beautiful about him is he never placed any restraint unto himself when he was in action. He would scream like woman if he felt like it! Haha. It was funny how many looks we got from within the gymnasium when we played because of how flamboyant and noisy we were as a pair. He was also very encouraging and positive-spirited. Always motivated to win, he would play every point with so much vigor and energy that it was infectious...
We never really talked a lot when we were not playing but the few derivatives I have off of his personal life is that he was as fascinated with guys as he was with women! I could talk to him about this cutie I wanted to see or this hottie I just laid my eyes on and he would tell me an experience of significant equivalence to what I just mentioned. We talked about men mostly and I never really got to know his beloved other except for when my friends had already told me. But he was a beautiful personality I believe when you really came to know him and was never judgmental. He was always curious about my transitioning and my surgeries and the MEN that i see and how we should sexually categorise them haha! It's probably just as weighty as the curiosity of people who really want to know me but I guess he added his own personal touch to it.
He was always encouraging me to join tournaments with him. I think that was one of the major disappointments about our being doubles partners because we were really good when it came to the game. I guess my competitive nerves when I'm around with people I do not know was the main reason. He knew I had talent and he knew I could compete and that makes him such an excellent partner. He believed I was capable of giving more and achieving more probably. Well I can tell him if we ever met again in the second life...no hesitations this time! We will down the competition!!!
I will miss you my giant killer of a partner, a most infectiously optimistic being and a humble character with lots of positive attributes that will surely be yearned for and deeply missed by many of his peers. Stay happy as i have always remembered you to be....
Thank you for the generosity!!! Lingerie is life!!! Enjoy everyone and always spread the amazing love of the big bad WINKLERGIRL !!!...
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