A Book Review: A Place Called Here

Written by Shuyi aka Lavender at 6:48 pm

I got curious about the author, Cecelia Ahern, after watching PS: I Love You because I like the movie so much. It didn’t have a really good rating in Rotten Tomatoes but I find it really touching, having your beloved help you overcome his death just shows that love can survive anything even death.

However I didn’t want to read PS: I Love You because I’ve already seen the movie so randomly picked another book and this is it – A Place Called Here.

This book is about a woman discovering a place where all missing things go. It plays around the idea of ‘things just happen’. The characters can’t explain how things/persons got to that place or why. It is something that no one can control like it’s fated.

It illustrates the frustration of the characters very well, telling the story from different angles. I do agree with one of the commenters of this book that it’s a fairytale, the adult kind of fairytale but I prefer the classical kind of fairytale where things are simpler and the sense of magic and fantasy is more vivid.

One thing that I don’t like about the story is that things are fated, like a mentioned earlier. Yes, I agree, in real life sometime, some things really do seem like they are fated and it’s frustrating. But I got the feeling, after reading this book, that it discourages us, readers, to do anything about a disagreeable situation!

In the book where the key character, Sandy, finds herself in the place where missing things and people go, the people there tells her that there is no way out and that there is nothing she can do about it but accept the fact that she’s staying there. There are people in that place who kept on looking for ways out but their efforts are not fruitful. Yes, there are situations like that in life but I don’t feel that efforts to do something about a situation should be discouraged.

In the end, Sandy was not meant to stay in that place and so she mysteriously found her way out, back into our world. But then again, it was fated, she got out not knowing why and how. It was just her luck.

This is just my two cents worth about the book. I just personally didn’t like the story, not the author. Maybe if I had read it from another angle, it’ll be totally different but for now, I’m of this opinion.

A good note to end this post – Although I didn’t like the story but I do feel that Cecelia Ahern is a good storyteller. I especially like chapter 53. She tells it so well that I could see the scenes before my eyes like a movie. I can imagine how beautiful it will be if it was to be made into a movie.

I’ll definitely read her other books to find out more about her work. Judging an author by just reading one of her books is just not fair.

The Ms Brancy Meet Up

Written by Shuyi aka Lavender at 5:45 pm

I can’t help myself but to be amused when I thought of the title for my entry. It sounded like a fan club-idol meet up. Haha… But come to think of it, it is quite true in some point. I/we (myself and those who had the privilege to be trained under Ms Brancy) admire and adore her a lot.

Although she is irrevocably tough, fierce and easily flared up but she is the best coach I have ever had. I truly miss the times when we were training, be it for cheerleading competitions, hip hop competitions, aerofit competition or mere classes, including the scolding and injuries… I will not have it any other way.

It has been a long long time since I last trained under her. If I’m not mistaken it was 2003/2004. Oh, the last time I saw her was when she was a participant of ‘So You Think You Can Dance’. My friends and I once went all the way to Ruums to support her and we never miss an episode. But it was a very brief meeting. We didn’t even get to talk to her. :-(

Anyway, after all these years (sounded like a million years, lol) she made a trip back to Ipoh and we finally get to meet up! So I headed back to Ipoh on the 24th of April 2010 for the meet in a restaurant called My Point. We only ever go there because it was near the studio where we used to train and because of Ms Brancy. After all these years (again sounded like I’m 80 years-old) this fact hasn’t change. :-)

miss brancy and I

The lighting at the place is really not suitable for picture taking. The ceiling light is blue so without the flash we became -

The Avavtars

AVATARS!!! Who needs computers for specials effects! :lol:

Anyhow, here a group pic -

Group Pic

Hmm… not my good angle.

Too bad Mr Wilson (he’s the one who owned the studio, Gymkids, where we trained) left early and I forgot to take pictures before he left. Another pity thing was that Shosann and Mei Lee couldn’t make it. Oh how I miss the carefree days of training and teaching in Gymkids!

During this meeting, I feel that there’s something different. Nothing bad, just different. Maybe it’s because I haven’t seen her a in a long time. Or maybe it’s because I used to be her student and now it feels more like meeting a friend – a change in status. I’m not sure… :-? However I’m sure it’s a good thing and I’m certainly glad that we had this meet up.

Near 7pm, Ms Brancy have to leave and so the meeting was adjourned. Boo~

Never mind. My sis and I decided to have dinner together! Yay! We went to Ipoh Parade to ‘walk’ up an appetite and did some shopping. Not much, just 2 tops but my purse is already shouting at me.

Lastly, we camwhored a bit while waiting for our food to arrive and called it a day.

My lovely sis and I

See, my sis always so shiong keing. The camera loves her!

Actually I went out with my Dear for a late yam cha session before calling it a day.

Dear Dear and I

Not a really good pic. Lots of shadows on the face but it is still a pic of my Dear and I nonetheless… :-)

So Random

Written by Shuyi aka Lavender at 6:29 pm

I was bored, sitting in front of my computer having nothing in mind. Wanted to search on something interesting to read up on but couldn’t think of any. Then, while thinking to myself that I want something random, I typed ‘random’ and Google-ed it. And I found this page which contains random facts.

It was certainly entertaining and really random. So random that I don’t think anyone has ever thought about them.

Did you know that -

President Kennedy was the fastest random speaker in the world with upwards of 350 words per minute.

and that -

In the average lifetime, a person will walk the equivalent of 5 times around the equator.

How about this? -

In the early days of the telephone, operators would pick up a call and use the phrase, “Well, are you there?”. It wasn’t until 1895 that someone suggested answering the phone with the phrase “number please?”


According to suicide statistics, Monday is the favored day for self-destruction.

Talk about Monday blues…

And also, did you know that -

The Eisenhower interstate system requires that one mile in every five must be straight. These straight sections are usable as airstrips in times of war or other emergencies.


It is believed that Shakespeare was 46 around the time that the King James Version of the Bible was written. In Psalms 46, the 46th word from the first word is shake and the 46th word from the last word is spear.

Is it just me? I find it fascinating!!! Who would go check out stuff like these??

Oh, this one is yucky yet very interesting -

The first known contraceptive was crocodile dung, used by Egyptians in 2000 B.C.

How?? Maybe I’ll look this up later…

And there’s more -

When you die your hair still grows for a couple of months.

Each of the suits on a deck of cards represents the four major pillars of the economy in the middle ages: heart represented the Church, spades represented the military, clubs represented agriculture, and diamonds represented the merchant class.

The Main Library at Indiana University sinks over an inch every year because when it was built, engineers failed to take into account the weight of all the books that would occupy the building.

Must be a lot of books. Are they saving the books before it sinks with the library? Or will they find a way to turn it into a underground library one day?

The sound of E.T. walking was made by someone squishing her hands in jelly.

So that’s how it’s made!!!

1 in 5,000 north Atlantic lobsters are born bright blue.

So rare, they must be beautiful. Don’t eat the lobster if it’s blue! Keep it as a pet.

There are 10 human body parts that are only 3 letters long (eye hip arm leg ear toe jaw rib lip gum).

The king of hearts is the only king without a moustache.

Mario, of Super Mario Bros. fame, appeared in the 1981 arcade game, Donkey Kong. His original name was Jumpman, but was changed to Mario to honor the Nintendo of America’s landlord, Mario Segali.

Luckily they changed the name. Super Mario sounds so much better than Jumpman…

There are more than 1,700 references to gems and precious stones in the King James translation of the Bible.

Who actually take note of this??! :-?

Mary Stuart became Queen of Scotland when she was only six days old.

I don’t know who Mary Stuart is but Queen when she’s six days old!!? Poor baby, so much responsibilities at such a young age…

Flying from London to New York by Concord, due to the time zones crossed, you can arrive 2 hours before you leave.

Dentists have recommended that a toothbrush be kept at least 6 feet (2 m) away from a toilet to avoid airborne particles resulting from the flush.

Yucks! I am so following that advice!

You burn more calories sleeping than you do watching TV.

Go to sleep people if you want to loose weight! lol…

The citrus soda 7-UP was created in 1929; “7″ was selected because the original containers were 7 ounces. “UP” indicated the direction of the bubbles.

So that’s why it’s named 7-UP…

Canadian researchers have found that Einstein’s brain was 15% wider than normal.

No wonder he’s so smart.

The fist product to have a bar code was Wrigleys gum.

The word “nerd” was first coined by Dr. Seuss in “If I Ran the Zoo.”

Haha… Everyone use the word ‘nerd’ so much but I never thought of how or where it came from.

The roar that we hear when we place a seashell next to our ear is not the ocean, but rather the sound of blood surging through the veins in the ear. Any cup-shaped object placed over the ear produces the same effect.

Hmm… listening to a sea shell is not so eerie fairy now…

Clans of long ago that wanted to get rid of unwanted people without killing them used to burn their houses down — hence the expression “to get fired”

Now we know why people say ‘you’re fired!’

The plastic things on the end of shoelaces are called aglets.

I know now and I’m going to try and remember it.

The earliest recorded case of a man giving up smoking was on April 5, 1679, when Johan Katsu, Sheriff of Turku, Finland, wrote in his diary “I quit smoking tobacco.” He died one month later.

So much for ‘live longer/healthier when you quit smoking’. Not very encouraging for smokers to wants to quit…

“Goodbye” came from “God bye” which came from “God be with you.”

I didn’t know ‘good bye’ is so meaningful… I’m going to say more ‘good byes’ from now on…

These are only some I find interesting. There are more on the page itself. :-D