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Yuan Ting
14 January 2014 @ 11:16 pm
This year, I turn 18 years old.

Eighteen is supposed to be an age where you are generally considered to have become an Adult.

Yet, I have never been more indecisive than ever.

Yesterday, the results for the O levels were released. Now, my juniors are in the process of choosing their next school and also the subject combination/course that they want to take. Looking at them rationalise their decision, I can't help but look back to mine as well. I chose to go to ACSI, I chose to take PCME. Both choices were seemingly effortless. I didn't think much and yet I already knew what I wanted to do. Or so I thought.

1 year on, my doubts are stronger than ever. It began much earlier, back in March. I started to wonder about the subject combination I was taking and whether it was really what I wanted. Economics, in particular. I felt nothing for the subject and felt that there was no enjoyment, no fulfillment in lessons. I considered switching subjects to History, but it was already too late. I took PCM in particular because I was set on reading Chemistry (or some other chemistry-based course) in Imperial. Doing Chemistry required 1 other science (Physics) and HL Math was preferred. So that was the route I took.

Now, I can't help but wonder if this is really what I want. Doing mathematics throughout the course of 2013 was one of the most frustrating things I had to deal with that year. Doing the worksheets made me moody, I cried on more than one occasion because I simply didn't know how to do the questions even after class and had to seek a lot of help from my friends. It had the most extraordinary ability of undermining my confidence in myself. Don't take me wrong, I still did fairly well, all things considered (I got 6 points for my overall grade last year) but I just feel so disheartened whenever I do math. People always talk about that satisfaction you get after solving a difficult problem and I am no exception. I feel happy when I can solve a problem on my own without help (almost never - I always have to ask my friend who sits next to me in class or consult the internet) but I just can't help but feel - if I continue to purse science in university, how much more math am I going to get?

Is it really worth it?

Chemistry was my favourite subject all through secondary school and Year 5, but I have a feeling that's only because it's my best subject. Also, I did well enough in the subject to be recognised for it. I think that's why it subconsciously became my favourite subject as well. Yet, I also feel that my passion for literature (and reading) and history can also equal my like for Chemistry.

Today, as I tackled an integration worksheet, I faced roadblocks again. This isn't anything new, but coupled with seeing my twitter timeline explode with my juniors' questions and thoughts about their future, I just had to reconsider. And after almost a year of this burning at the back of my mind, I really think I made the wrong choice.

There's nothing I can do though. So for now, I just have to study hard for all my subjects, do relatively well at IB at the end of this year and then ensure that I get to choose what course I want to do in university. Maybe then, I will make the right decision. Yet, in Singaporean society, studying the arts is still something that has not been fully embraced yet and I really don't know if I am on either side of the spectrum.

This year, I'll be turning 18. This year, I'll have to make some of the toughest decisions in my life so far.

This year, I hope
Tags: ,
Mood: confusedconfused
Yuan Ting
09 September 2013 @ 08:47 pm
(shamelessly ripping the title off from the vlogbrothers again because I can)

So I was in Phuket for the weekend, taking a little break from this mess that is my academic life. The trip was enjoyable, filled with glorious beaches and copious time to read, but as we roamed the streets, I couldn't help but worry as I took in the sights before me.

Mainly, the issue of sustainable tourism. This struck me with the most impact when we went to the Phi Phi islands yesterday. At the beach at Phi Phi Ley, the tiny strip of sand contained hundreds of tourists and too many speedboats. What worries me especially is the speedboat. The waters wear crystal clear and a gorgeous shade of blue but I couldn't help but wonder how long could it be sustained? If there are so many speedboats there during what is considered the off-peak season, imagine the amount of litter and oil that goes into the sea during other times of the year. Also, litter on the beach. It wasn't so apparent when I was there yesterday but it has to be an issue for such a small beach with a tiny carrying capacity and the volume of tourists there that definitely exceeded what the island can handle.

If this isn't regulated, the islands will just go to waste. Where would we be then? Another island that has yet to be touched by tourists with untouched, pristine beaches?

Also, when I look at Phuket, I see a place still struggling to rebuild itself from the aftermath of the tsunami.

Whenever I look out of the minibus along the highway, I see rubbish heaps filled with wrecked infrastructure. The area where I stayed in, Kamala beach, was almost a ghost town. There were so many bars and restaurants in the area but so few tourists. We were the only family living in the resort. Can you imagine that on a weekend? Even if it is the off-peak season, this scarily low volume of tourists worries me, especially when there are so many of them at Phi Phi island. Despite the fact that the beach at Kamala looks the same as Patong (the most popular beach), there were so little people at Kamala compared to Patong.

Sustainable tourism needs to be throughout the entire island. 
♫: Augustana - Boston
Yuan Ting
10 August 2013 @ 10:46 pm
illustrating the difference in how we eat our fries.
Campaign City @ NLB
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Mood: refreshedrefreshed
Yuan Ting
28 June 2013 @ 04:19 pm
View of the highway @ Telok Blangah
Put this image up on Instagram to be a troll but most got tricked so I feel a little bad. Just a little, though. I'm still a PCME student, hah.

diet rantCollapse )
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♫: 久石譲 - The Retreat | Powered by Last.fm
Yuan Ting
21 June 2013 @ 10:18 pm

We're all lost little souls, growing older yet still without a clear direction in life. This year, we turn seventeen. The year before eighteen. Not yet an adult, but definitely a long way from a child.

It's the age to start thinking more deeply, to start envisioning your future clearly but yet... we'e still young teens at heart.


Sometimes I feel I'm still way too superficial and that I don't concern myself with issues that I really should be, but then again, my mind is in overload all the time and if I try to bombard it with too much information at a time, I'll probably break down. I guess everyone has their own pace of growing up and as long as you find that you aren't too far away from everyone else i.e. average, I think it's okay to progress at your own pace and see where you end up. (:

Right now my long-term dream is to study Chemistry at Imperial with the intention of becoming a research scientist (vague. Maybe branching into medicinal chemistry?) and my short-term goals are to do well for my exams and not to get distracted by other things. Also, another is to focus on band and become a better player. Both are challenging goals, but if they're easy to attain, there's not much motivation left anymore.

Ending off the post with a weird image again:
Mood: contemplativecontemplative