A Year Is Just 365 Days

By Valerie A gap year sounds sexy, doesn’t it? It’s becoming increasingly popular, but still unconventional enough to warrant fascination from others when you tell them about it, almost like a badge of honour you wear proudly on your sleeve to announce to the world that you are not afraid to stop and take time to think […]

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Carpe Diem

By Valerie It was all I could ever think about, the nasty culprit behind countless sleepless nights, a master puppeteer who toyed with my emotional strings, wearing me down till I went limp as a rag doll. Childish. Immature. Melodramatic. Many derided my all-consuming obsession as such. But was it really? How could I stop […]

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Colon Hyphen Parenthesis

By Valerie As a quintessential Gen Z-er, I am conversationally impaired without my painstakingly-curated digital repository of stickers, emoticons and emojis. How could I not, when they have the power to impart shades and nuances that colloquial devices cannot effectively convey?    Responding playfully to a lame quip from a close friend with a terse […]

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An Unexpected Year

By Valerie I knew that 2020 was going to be different. The respite from a grueling cycle of tests, projects and competitions was something I had anticipated since the start of high school, but I never expected it to be different in the way that it has been.  I made plans– lots of them– most […]

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Pandemic “Getaways”

There it stood, arrogant and adamant, heedless of the shrill herald of impending peril.   I hastened my pace, smug in the certainty that the sudden acceleration would cow it into capitulation— but it hardly flinched in the face of the rapidly looming two-wheeled menace.   With disaster lurking a mere hair’s breadth away, complacency swiftly transmuted […]

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Embracing Unpredictability

By Valerie 4.5E14, 1.2E2, 94, 59…  I sat stock-still with my body contorted in an awkward position, the tingling and prickling of pins and needles in my limbs hardly registering as I fixated my gaze on the screen with intense, sober concentration, for fear that everything would go awry upon the slightest falter.  …32, 1.8, 0.04, 0.0015…  […]

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