Disclaimer: T suggested this; I'm not so bhb.

1. Oven
2. Stand mixer. My dream is to own a RED (so gorgeous, the colour!) KitchenAid but it costs two bombs.
3. Coin spoons from Ireland. (Click to see blog post and picture)



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the apple crumble of my eye ♦ ;

Sunday, July 27, 2014


is when people who have a theistic belief

tell this agnostic/atheist here

to be, get this,

more open

about accepting their theistic belief.

I am without words. Or rather, I am WITH words but am unable to string them into a coherent enough sentence so let me just use a numerical representation -

Number of things I accept: 1000000

Number of things you accept because of what you've been taught in your theistic religion: 100

And YOU tell ME to be more open.


I do intend to upload photos from the New Mexico trip. Taking my time to adjust back to Real Life hur.

Update 28 July - Day 1: too many timezones and not enough sleep post up!

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pretty little red butterfly.
1:02 PM

Monday, July 21, 2014


Time: 21 July, 9.38am

Warning: long post ahead.

Hello, I'm still here. The conference which needs me to use many brain cells, 14-hour time difference, sunset only at 8pm has made chooahqi a vair easily exhausted girl. I barely have time to write my travel journal, much less blog hur. Yesterday I spent almost the entire day writing the past TWO days' worth of stuff at all sorts of places - the lounge while waiting for the shuttle to the Plaza (aka downtown Santa Fe where it's bustling and noisy and there are all kinds of shops)/in a bookstore/back in the room. Shows how much has happened and how much I have not had time to sit down and write.

I wanted to type this up last night but again, too tired. I'll do proper posts back home about what happened each day but basically yesterday (my 20 July) I was free already, the conference being from 16-19 July. I left the bookstore with about 5-ish minutes to spare to get to the pickup point for the shuttle back to the hotel and raaan up slopes. Let's just say running at 2200+ altitude on not particularly much food (a cappucino and a huge blueberry muffin which is eh~ and also, the muffins here are really not spectacular, I think I bake better, this is not bragging, it's fact), nor sleep is not advisable. Haha. Also, I realised after a while I had juuust missed the shuttle. Aiya.

While I was still hoping against hope that the shuttle will turn the corner, someone taps me on my right shoulder and I turn around to see an oldish woman wearing sunglasses (but I could see her eyes were like half-closed).

W: Excuse me, do you know that the Lord Jesus Christ is your Saviour and *something something I forgot*?

R: *couldn't catch it the first time round so she repeated, I responded macam she was telling me about the latest news instead of the direction I knew she was going, I braced myself for the subsequent onslaught, thought to myself 'oookay here we go' and said* Oh yea, I've heard of it.

W: Are you a Christian?

R: *debated whether to lie and say yes or say I'm any other religion other than that, decided I dowan to go against my principles* No.

W: Have you read the book? (SEE, she called it book leh not bible!)

R: No. (One-word answers with no additional information, how characteristic of me.)

W: Why not?

R: Not interested.

W: Do you know we are all sinners and *something something else* and God saved us from our sins and that 'whoever believed in him shall not perish but have eternal life'? (The quotation I was actually mouthing along with her, in my head of course, not outwardly, because I KNOW THE VERSE! JOHN 3:16! SEE! I KNOW OKEH!)

Prior to this, I was still looking at her and maintaining eye contact every so often. After this, I was no longer staring at her while she talked but looking out left and right (for the shuttle as well as just avoiding eye contact, how characteristic of me #2), she moved to my left (the direction I was looking out for the shuttle in ha).

W: Why don't you seek Jesus Christ?

R: *in my head: because I'm an agnostic/atheist but dare not say it out because god knows (pun intended? HURHUR) what she will do to me if I had said that so I told a white lie for my own safety* Because I'm not ready.

W: Why aren't you ready? You just have to accept Him (almost forgot to capitalise H), and be a child of God etc. etc.

R: But I'm just not.

W: *insert some more long stories of biblical phrases and god and salvation vs. sin and hell and eternal damnation and you also know la huh*

R: *barely nodding/outwardly responding by this point*

W: Do you know that there was once a man in Ohio (*thinks: oh she's going to tell me some miraculous story like that described in 'Amazing Grace'*) who said he wasn't ready, and the next minute he got into a motorbike accident and was condemned to Hell because he did not seek salvation (dunno whether this phrasing/wording makes sense, can't remember exactly what she said but OH it isn't a story about a miracle (that can probably be explained by science), this is a refreshing change!).

R: *barely nods keeping a neutral look. Some people walk past being very curious but none could hear my silent cry for help, maybe cuz I was so poker-faced HA*

W: Why aren't you ready? *repeats self some more, insert something more about God being good and we want to go up, not go down to Hell and Satan* You can go as you are. *something more about you'll be condemned in Hell if you don't believe, I just tell her yea I'm okay about it hurrr*

R: I'm just not.

W: It's like when you meet someone. Do you get ready and take a shower first?

R: *puzzled* Yes.

W: *surprised at my answer, which I'm like huh you mean you DON'T shower before going to meet someone?! but she recovers herself quickly* But God already knows what you think. It's like if you were called up to the court over a fine, you have to pay it, but God has already done the paying for us (at this point I wanted to interject that hallo if you break the law of course you must pay for it la then what?! but then she had moved on to her next topic and I couldn't say it anymore). Do you want to choose a Hell of death and destruction etc. or God's light and hope and Saviour and everything (paraphrasing, duh). Do you want to go into the darkness? Can you see in the dark? (*in my head: after a while yes, when my eyes have gotten used to the darkness ha SEE, I got answers to all the questions which to her are rhetorical*) No, you can't, you need God's light etc. etc. more binary light/dark metaphors, joy, hope, all other positive abstract nouns.

R: But you talk about death and destruction, it's already happening now. *I was twirling up a belt in my hands, at this point I stopped twirling and put it in my bag, also to check my belongings were still with me*

Wah this woman. Gotta give her props for being able to come up with an answer immediately that seems to make sense to her, but which I'm sure might be an ad hominem fallacy but wahey it's an answer!

W: Yes, I know, that's where the three branches of sin come from - one, the governmental systems which govern us *some elaboration that I forgot*. Two, your body which tempts you to do things that are bad for you - you eat too much, drink too much, some people take drugs and alcohol. (Oh? She didn't mention sex?! *EYE BIG BIG* I thought that would be #1! But oh sorry, need to produce next generation of children of God.) (And then because I was so distracted by the lack of mention of sex I forgot the third point HAHA.)

R: *continues nodding periodically, not wanting to talk anymore, I can list homosexuality and children who are born with diseases - what did the children EVER do?! etc. etc. and ask her to explain all of that with her benevolent God's book but then I didn't want to be stuck with her for the rest of my life, also was wondering whyyy I missed that shuttle aiyaaa*

I must have suddenly looked like I was going to GO somewhere or she finally finished her monologue and found that maybe there was still some hope left in me *snorts* or maybe she saw that she was NOT getting her message through this stubborn head because she asked -

W: Anyway, what's your first name? (I am quite sure I heard specifically first name, I was wondering wah so specific ah)

R: Rachel. *on hindsight was glad I didn't give her the other name I give to people whom I don't wish to have any connections with: Grace!! Can you imagine what she can say about that name with respect to God and grace and things?! Phew!*

W: Do you live in the US?

R: No. (Haha one-word answers FTW. Also I think she was waiting to be told where I *do* live then hur. Sorry, zilch.)

W: Well, Rachel, tonight I'll be praying for you.

R: *manages to keep the snort down* Thank you.

W: I'll be praying that you'll be ready soon. You're a beautiful, sweet, gentle girl (*nearly snorted out loud - after all that non-committal nods and staring everywhere else except at her and she can STILL call me all that and especially gentle?! Wah piang eh 拜托!*)

R: Um, thank you.

W: Where are you headed to? Were you waiting for a friend?

R: No, I was waiting for a shuttle but I think I had just missed it.

W: *makes expression of sympathy* Aw. Your hotel shuttle? Is this the pickup point? Perhaps it is somewhere else?

R: No it's here, but it's okay I'm just going to start walking back now. *starts walking*

W: I'm leaving, you can stay here if you want to wait. (*thinks: wah means she knew she wasn't getting through to me? Oh this poor girl and her lack of readiness to accept the great being*)

R: Oh, no, it's alright, I'll just start walking.

W: *calls out* The Eldorado and Hilton have shuttles by the *forgot where she said*

R: *turns back but doesn't stop walking* Okay thanks! *continues walking, shaking head internally, dare not outwardly shake yet sekali she was looking at me, also wondered if she was following me and if I should make elaborate detours hur, I didn't. Also, wah she thinks I can afford the Eldorado and Hilton?! Especially the former - the building looks super nice and I'm quite sure super out of my budget too.

WELL. Wasn't that fun.

After I told her about me having missed the shuttle, I can just imagine her thinking that it was God who made me miss my shuttle for a reason, and the reason is so that she, messenger of God, could come and talk to me get my chance to gain enlightenment and awww so wonderful and warm and fuzzy.

So I missed my shuttle. But I got a cool story out of it.

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pretty little red butterfly.
11:38 PM

Thursday, July 17, 2014

santa fe

Time: 16 July, 10.56pm (publishing as Singapore time)

Hello from Santa Fe.

Normally I would do a semi-travel journal entry-style blog while travelling but this time the 27-hour flight journey I had and 14-hour time difference has made me supreeeeemely tired so all you're getting from me today is this update I made on Facebook about 12 hours ago:
We wish for extra hours in a day so we can accomplish more things. I had 36 hours yesterday and all I'm feeling is zzzzz, having been on 3 planes and barely slept on any of them, 3 continents, 4 (!) timezones (kept turning back my watch pretending it's a Time-Turner ha), a 3-hour flight delay with a VAIR reassuring pilot telling us "Sorry for the delay, it's an old issue. Flight time is 2 hours, let's hope there's enough air" let's HOPE indeed!? Hur. And guess which genius brought everything AND the kitchen sink SANS phone USB cable? (Last year it was camera cable. I see a trend.) Parted with USD14 for the last one at the gas station (must speak Armorican in Armorica), hai. Hello Santa Fe, I look forward to seeing what you have in store for me. For now, I nap. (Time: 16 July, 10am)

P.S. I think security thinks I'm under 12 cuz I didn't have to do the step-in-metal-container-lift-arm thing. Thank you, I'm enormously flattered :p
Hope I'm more functional tmr. Yee-haw.

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pretty little red butterfly.
12:56 PM

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Day 1: too many timezones and not enough sleep

[Posted on 28 July 2014]

I wanted to gif the images of all the sunrises and sunsets I saw but haha I'm too lazy.

So you get to scroll down many pictures of the sky instead. Yay!

I wanted to blog as I went along but 1) I was really toooo sleepy every night. Places with long days (i.e., the sun only set at 8pm there) make me tire easily and 2) I didn't want to reveal the location of the places I went WHILE I was there.

Anyway, extremely long day 1, 15 July.

Woke at 2.30am for a 6am flight. Felt like I was waking up for Qing Ming mornings.

I couldn't sleep the entirety of this flight, every time my head drooped I woke up. HAIYO. It was the first flight that I took (macam I have flown so many times before like that hur) there was a middle seat free. I was so tempted to lift up the middle arm rest and just lieee down.

So what did I do? Take pictures of the sky, as mentioned.

We were flying an hour forward from 6am onwards so we got to see sunrise!

Transited in Tokyo Narita. Was so glad that there was no delay, cuz I only had about an hour transit, which was just about enough for me to alight, pass the Japan security and prepare to board the next plane.

This time, we were going back 14 hours so I think I saw a reverse sunrise (or does this just mean sunset?) and then sunrise again. Whatever it was, it was BEAUTIFUL. Also the clouds were ridiculous. Sky, you continue doing you.

Transited a second time in Houston, Texas. Somehow did not have to do the step-in-metal-tube-lift-arm thing. P, who was waiting for me at Albuquerque airport, upon knowing this, laughed and said, surely they don't think you are 12? HAHA. Thank you thank you, I hope you DO think that of me, I'm vair flattered. :D

Took the internal tram to from terminal E to B to catch my final flight...

...only to have to wait like two hours cuz the plane had not arrived yet. Then after they announced that it had and we could board, we went to the boarding gate and waited waiting aimlessly for half an hour. THEN someone came to say that the plane had issues and so there would be a further delay. We had to wait another hour, there was a change of boarding gates, and then FINALLY, After three hours:

I've always wondered how come some planes needed the people to go on the tarmac and not walk on a suspended bridge thingy and ta-dah I had a chance to experience it first-hand.

The pilot apologised for the delay, saying it was an old issue (that apparently had not been settled???) and that the flight would take two hours, hope there's enough air. HALLO, HOPE CAN ALREADY AH. Lucky I was just chill about it because I believe that if it's time to go, it's time to go. (This was before MH17, FYI.)

And after a three-hour delay, I landed at the Albuquerque Sunport, New Mexico at 7.15pm MST. PHEW.

The first thing P said to me was "I'M SO GLAD YOU'RE ALIVE!" Haha. When I emailed her saying my plane was delayed, she was so worried for me as she thought that I was ALREADY on the plane when they mentioned the delay, instead of actually waiting at the departure hall all the way. No wonder she was so relieved.

We were both due to land about 4pm and I told P to book the 5.45pm shuttle so we had time to get back on firm ground first. Obviously that had to be postponed due to my flight delay. She kept going back to the counter to say postpone for the next hour, until the woman seemed to forget us for the 7.45pm one as she was handling many other things then, so we had to wait a further hour before we were able to get out of the airport. I had wanted to get something proper to eat for dinner but by then, I had not much appetite left. Also it could be due to the altitude (about 2200+ metres) that I just didn't feel like eating anything much at all so I just ate up all the bread/granola bar/whatever that was served on the plane and I kept and that was my dinner. All the food on the plane was okayyy~ at best. I took photos of them but as I looked at them while selecting pictures to upload, I felt like puking. So no pictures of the plane food. I've been spoiled by SQ and Cathay Pacific haha. The ABQ airport is considered small compared to the rest so only a few airlines ply it. I took United (which I always remember as the airline which:


My eyes were red and my under-eye area was also red by then cuz of the lack of sleep. I was sooo sleepy.

We boarded our 8.45pm shuttle early but there was this one guy who needed to get to some obscure hotel whereas the rest of us were all going for the SSSR conference and its affiliated hotels. The driver had to make a huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuge detour because one of their highways, called the I-25 (which stood for Intersection I guess?) was closed for building works. I was trying NOT to sleep on the shuttle so that I could plonk immediately into bed but I was just SO tired and my head was just lolling all about and I didn't care anymore.

We finally arrived at the Santa Fe Sage Inn at 10+. And got into our room at 11pm:

It was small but so cosy. And red wheeeee. I attempted to say 麻雀虽小 五脏俱全 and said 五官 instead and P laughed at me.

They even provided makeup wipes! (Which none of us used.)

Lessons learnt on the first day:

1) Driving on the right side of the road is weird. I kept marvelling at it and feeling unease in equal measures.

2) People who live in big countries have a different concept of distance from people who live in small ones. I was amazed that they were able to close up an entire highway, and knowing the US, it is definitely HUMONGOUS. So HOW are they able to do it?! The detour was about an hour. I am really so not used to sitting in a vehicle for extended periods of time and only like 1/3 of the way there. Big long distances scare and exasperate me.

Also, the no-mood-to-eat thing would plague me the rest of the trip. But I'm getting ahead of myself...

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pretty little red butterfly.
11:59 PM

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Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ❀ RUIQI ★♥♦♣♠


The name is Rui Qi (pronounced 'Ray Chee', 'q' has a ch- sound like that in 'chair'). But I have also heard enough manglings of my name to respond to anything that you may wish to call, so you're in luck there.

Has a "lively playful disposition that delight[s] in anything ridiculous", wants to be a "beautiful little fool".

Introductory posts you may wish to read first: #1; #2

The past me decided on this childish name of a blog link, the present me is slightly regretful but is still a sentimental mess.

Don't take what I say at face value, don't read too much into things, either. If you read Chinese, 不要对号入座也别胡思乱想.

I am an agnostic/non-theist.

"Before you assume, learn the facts. Before you judge, understand why. Before you hurt someone, feel. Before you speak, think."

Creative Commons Licence
© violingal.blogspot.com 2005-2013 by Rui Qi is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
TL;DR: you cannot republish any or part of my posts at all, but if you ask me for permission and I grant it, you can do whatever you please with it. Sounds fair innit.




JAPAN 2011

6 July 2011 Nippon nuggets #1
6 July 2011 Day 1: the start of the matcha float obsession
7 July 2011 Nippon nuggets #2
7 July 2011 Day 2: of places not worth going
8 July 2011 Nippon nuggets #3
8 July 2011 Day 3: the love/hate relationship with the word 押
9 July 2011 Nippon nuggets #4
9 July 2011 Day 4: of the well water I should not have drunk
10 July 2011 Nippon nuggets #5
10 July 2011 Day 5: burnt and fried
11 July 2011 Nippon nuggets #6
11 July 2011 Day 6: royalty, gold and luck
12 July 2011 Nippon nuggets #7
12 July 2011 Day 7: of 散心 and a lot of writing
13 July 2011 Nippon nuggets #8
13 July 2011 Day 8: of deer and drama
14 July 2011 Nippon nuggets #9
14 July 2011 Day 9: distinctively Japanese
15 July 2011 Nippon nuggets #10
15 July 2011 Day 10: vermillion and socially awkwardness
16 July 2011 Nippon nuggets #11
16 July 2011 Day 11: speed
17 July 2011 Nippon nuggets #12
17 July 2011 Day 12: red-faced, distress and weri cute xiong mao
18 July 2011 Nippon nuggets #13
18 July 2011 Day 13: Idontwannagohome!
19 July 2011 Day 14: sayonara sakura



Being slightly narcissistic here, but these are the blog entries I like/you should read.

The Hot Girl's Defense
one setting, two stories
flowers make me happy :)
how NOT to make an origami Eevee
botak pantai
the alternate marriage vow
the wisest words are said by children
family ♡♡♡
now the holly bears a berry
a decade on...
yukata FTW
toadally awesome
of sexting and pick-up lines
of vlogging and blogging
"you're going to scald your baby next time"
the sociological perspective
letting go
no work and all play
seeking perfection
save the day
the joys of driving
of quotes and thoughts
killjoy + joy
the send-off + outtakes
stream of consciousness x 7
balloons love
celebrities galore
to come up with marvellous ideas, eat duck rice
of music and lyrics PR
Carmen - the epitome of feminism
mind your grammar, please
tres amusing
let nature take its course
sunshine after the rain
it's up to the Powerpuff Girls to save the day!
the perks/perils of black stockings
"endearing hug"
thinking deep thoughts
convincing writing like never before
lost in translation
drink drank drunk
you believe because you believe
"love never dies"
they deserve a post to themselves
must be the funnest recess/exam week ever
this should have been highlight of the year too, I killed a cockroach! - cooking/screaming up a storm
it actually deserves an update, but here's letter to my 16-year-old self
privacy in the online world? forget it
word of the day: exposure
maybe we should get back, to the old days
of blogging
happy birthday, you inanimate thing


Inspiration from everywhere, including my previous blog templates.
x x