September 2016

Usually, the end of a semester feels like a bit the calm after a storm. I’m able to look back and scoff at my folly and say that I learnt a lot and that this semester changed me, yada yada and then publish a sober blog post feeling very good about myself indeed. I didn’t feel that way this time. I feel like I am still feeling the aftermath of a rude awakening. I made some long term decisions I never though I would. I think during parts of it, I was brave. (Typing this out loud feels weird, but you know what? I’ve made my peace with it. I’m allowed to be weird here. I was brave.)

So I will let the spring semester digest for a little bit.

Oh well. Now that I’ve shrugged off the imaginary responsibility of recapitulating the spring semester, I’m going to move on to the easy stuff. September!


On the first of September, I moved. It involved packing up my stuff after living in an apartment for a year, disassembling all my furniture (yes I own all the furniture I use and I handpicked it and this was not the wisest choice since I move frequently, but you know? Whatever.), loading it up in a U-Haul, moving it up two flights of stairs, and assembling it all back together in the short span of twelve hours.

I am a changed person. This body was not built for lifting anything heavier than a jumbo pack of paper towels, let me tell you.

I hereby assign Friends seasons 1-10 as homework to *everyone* so that I am never left laughing alone as I try to haul a white sofa up a narrow staircase, yelling “PIVOT.”

This taught me mostly that I own a lot of stuff. I wish I could say I sincerely regret buying that wretched turquoise teapot, four boxes of books and that hideous plant. I don’t.


A day later, I bid a very disgruntled goodbye to Waterloo and flew to Dallas first, to visit my family. We ate good food and visited Fossil Rim.

An indignant ostrich
A mullish zebra

On Labor Day, we drove to Austin, which to my intense dismay, turned out to be the least Texan city I’ve been to. There went my quintessential Texan experience. Things I like about Austin so far:

  • My apartment. Very much like Celaena Sardothien’s apartment in Rifthold in that it feels like a sanctuary and very much my own. Having my own washer/dryer unit for the first time in two+ years is basically one of the highlights of my year.
  • The people.
  • The portion sizes.
  • How there's live music in almost every part of downtown Austin.

Book Events

So apparently, Austin is interesting enough to merit a visit from some of my all time favourite YA authors. Tahereh Mafi, Ransom Riggs, and Sarah J. Maas all stopped in Austin for their book tours for Furthermore, Tales of the Peculiar and Empire of Storms (respectively).

To say that I soundly lost my shit is the understatement of my life.

Embarrassing highlight of the Sarah J Maas signing: When she asked the audience if we’d read The Hating Game and I screeched out “MEEEE” and the whole crowd fell silent and they all stared at me. Apparently it isn't as well known as I thought it was. In my defense, I didn’t mean to screech. But then Sarah cackled her signature witch cackle and everything was okay. She offered to personalize a second book for me (she was only supposed to do one) since I asked her to sign Empire of Storms for my sister.

Also Tahereh Mafi told me she liked my shirt!

*fervently treasures moment forever*



I like how I am very much responsible for my own progress at work. I started my last internship burdened, I guess, by my own expectations and the expectations that the people at work laid out for me. The work I’m doing here is better (technically), and the people are better, and I very much feel like this is an environment in which I can learn. I have the space to experiment and grow to love what I do. I am constantly told I ask very good questions, which is a big relief because I was lowkey worried I was asking too many. But instead, I am being told that my questions are not only welcome, but also valid.

I forgot to mention that one line also broke prod for a whole hour.