July was a jam-packed month for me, but in a good way. I kicked it off with loads of self-exiled writing at home during the first week, and treated myself to a Friday night with my Homies and a Saturday day out. I was at Sentosa’s Palawan Beach, followed by chill time at Tanjong Beach Club and a night out at the theatre to watch ‘Another Country’, a beautiful rendition of Malaysian and Singaporean identities.
In July I travelled loads and flew off to Sandakan to visit a friend. We had loads of seafood, visited the Sepilok Orang Utan Sanctuary and even toured palm oil plantations in the surrounding area. After Sandakan I did a stopover in Puchong, KL to meet up with my writing mentor, stay at a childhood friend’s hotel and meet up with girls from my high school.
Sandakan was followed quickly by Penang, which was filled with Ramly burgers, bowls of hokkien mee, lots of good local coffee, a Ramadhan buffet at Cititel and even an afternoon tea session baking scones and Moroccan orange cake. There was also a roadtrip down to KL with my sisters, eating Village Park’s nasi lemak and watching Terminator Genesys at 1-Utama.
In July I wrote three short stories – Separuh di Semenanjung (Halfway to Home), The Ruby Case and The Cashew Tree. I was also invited to the Esquire x Montblanc Fiction Project launch where my story ‘Oil & Water’ was shortlisted for the Top 10 prize. The winning story went to Eldon Ooi, nevertheless it was a great event where I got to meet other writers and editors. I also attended my usual Writing the City session at Toa Payoh Library where we had Epigram’s publisher come for a talk.
In July, I ticked two items off my ‘30 Before 30’ bucket list – visiting a working factory and getting my Singapore driving license! Towards the end, my sister came to visit and we had a fun weekend out at Chinatown, Mustafa, Orchard Road and Haji Lane. Our German friend also stopped by for a visit and we took her out for breakfast at Zam Zam. I ended the month by starting my new job at Asian Geographic Magazine and worshipping at the Planetshakers concert at Star Vista. All set for August!