You know my roommate Yingxu? She bought me a strawberry smoothie today because I got an A for math. That’s right, because I got an A for math! She rejoiced with me even though she got a D.  I have never known how to do such a thing for anyone, and I can’t remember anyone doing that for me. It is such a warm feeling, and I am really blessed. (But please don’t get the idea that she’s sweet because she’s not. Haha. She doesn’t read this anyway. Oh don’t get the idea that I did very well for everything either.)

 
Yeah, I’m so glad and thankful I got an A…just to give you an idea, almost half the cohort failed it. Not that the paper is insanely difficult (an unintelligent person can do well by hard work, brute force), it’s just that we don’t have tuition and we don’t practice a lot in Singapore, and most people don’t really grasp what they learn because they’re too busy with ccas or they just don’t care. Different from Malaysia, I think.

 
Actually I find Yingxu very interesting and amusing. There is something I really admire about that brilliant girl—my personal physics tutor—something I seldom see in the average student. No, she is not diligent, which is of course, not a good thing, as her results will attest. But she tries to understand concepts thoroughly and appreciates what she learns. And she has a passion for learning and discovering new things that commands my total respect! That is the whole point of education, isn’t it.

 
Sometimes we’d be walking and she’ll suddenly smile her smile and say, “I discovered that lizards can cling to the wall because of Van der waals forces! Interesting right?” And I wouldn’t know how to respond, because to me, it’s just another new fact I’d forget very soon.

 
At other times I’d catch her listening to a particular song over and over again, and she’ll tell me music is heavenly. And she makes special effort to befriend the guards, the cleaners, and the chefs!

 
Yesterday she told me she wants to read sun zi bing fa! *sweat* But really, she knows how to enjoy life. And it’s not merely in a hedonistic way. I still haven’t figured out why she’s like that. Must learn a bit from her, hehe.

 
[Maybe I’m already influenced. Learning not to be unnecessarily stressed. I realize that when we get under pressure we are choosing to let people or things put us under pressure. We can’t totally blame other people for our stress.]

 
“Work hard for the promo exams and if your name goes up on the A list I’ll belanja you again,” she said with a twinkle in her eye as we reached our hall and tossed our plastic cups into the rubbish bin.

 
The next time someone achieves something? I’ll know what to do. I’ll gladly pass Yingxu’s gift on.

(06.07.06)