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12/21/04 07:10 pm - Back

Back to public we go.

I haven't posted here in a while, but I still read each and every one of your entries (the people I have friended).

Life's been okay, nothing special.

And I've been listening to this song on repeat for the past week.

11/29/04 05:12 pm - Jacked from Kendall - Christmas Wishlist

Step One
- Make a post (public, friendslocked, filtered...whatever you're comfortable with) to your LJ. The post should contain your list of 10 holiday wishes. The wishes can be anything at all, from simple and fandom-related ("I'd love a Snape/Hermione icon that's just for me") to medium ("I wish for _____ on DVD") to really big ("All I want for Christmas is a new car/computer/house/TV.") The important thing is, make sure these wishes are things you really, truly want.

- If you wish for real life things (not fics or icons), make sure you include some sort of contact info in your post, whether it's your address or just your email address where Santa (or one of his elves) could get in touch with you.

- Also, make sure you post some version of these guidelines in your LJ so that the holiday joy will spread.

Step Two
- Surf around your friendslist (or friendsfriends, or just random journals) to see who has posted their list. And now here's the important part:

- If you see a wish you can grant, and it's in your heart to do so, make someone's wish come true. Sometimes someone's trash is another's treasure, and if you have a leather jacket you don't want or a gift certificate you won't use--or even know where you could get someone's dream purebred Basset Hound for free--do it.

You needn't spend money on these wishes unless you want to. The point isn't to put people out, it's to provide everyone a chance to be someone else's holiday elf--to spread the joy. Gifts can be made anonymously or not--it's your call.

There are no rules with this project, no guarantees, and no strings attached. Just...wish, and it might come true. Give, and you might receive. And you'll have the joy of knowing you made someone's holiday special.

1. The Sims 2
2. iPod
3. Admission into Phillips Exeter Academy
4. Cards and letters (ask for my address)
5. Drawings! (ask for my address)
6. Handmade gifts and trinkets (ask for my address)
7. Anything from the Chanel fashion house/line
8. Hugs and kisses
9. Video games
10. To love and to be loved

11/25/04 01:49 pm - Big Art Project

I've gotten started on my Big Art Project. After doodling in one too many margins of Algebra II homework, an idea came to me. People came to me. I drew a thumbnail and now it's in progress. It's about 40x25 cm - took me quite a while just to draw half of the foreground. The background and little details will take longer. Then the coloring. I will probably paint the background with gouache, and the foreground will be a mix of colored pencils, markers, and of course, whiteout.

I'll edit this entry later. I have to go now.

11/23/04 07:36 pm - Problem No. 5

Here I am, typing in this journal, when I really should be doing my Algebra II homework. Isolating radicals, squaring the square roots, and performing a million operations on a single sentence to find out what the ever elusive x equals. I pretend to like the subject of Mathematics because people expect that since I am 'good' at it, I will automatically like it. But, no. I like the subjects that I am not good at. Like History. And French.

My life is a tad more laidback than before, but it still has things that are screaming at me to finish them, screaming at me to stop procrastinating. My life is changing and so am I. For once, I can say that I feel loved and happy; not like how it was a few months ago. I've dropped old parasites that were just eating away at me...and found the right friends and the right things to keep me occupied. I feel accepted and that I am worth something; that I am pretty and not an ugly person after all.

And now I'm stumped at Problem No. 5 (It reminds me of Chanel No. 5, the eau de parfum [Is that right? Something like that anyway. I've been reading too many catalogs on the plane.]). Both "metaphorically" in my life (a certain person) and the problem that's glaring at me from my notebook, wondering why I haven't solved it yet.

At least I can doodle pretty sketches on the margins and say that I tried.

Which reminds me - I need to find that inked picture I never finished screentoning, so I can hurry up and get it done and post it on DA.

But the sun has long set. I can never finish school before it sets. It'll have to wait until the weekend.

So, instead, I'll just try to solve problem number five. Problem number five that is one in an interminable set of problems.

11/22/04 07:54 pm - Shanghai

I could have died yesterday.

A plane bound for Shanghai - the same morning and same destination as me - crashed and everyone on board perished. It made headlines.

But I'm lucky. I didn't die. I didn't buy the wrong plane ticket; a one way plane ticket to death.

I noticed, before I boarded my plane, that the sky was full of stars. This is really rare in Beijing. I haven't seen stars in two years. . .so I took it as a good sign.

As my plane started to land, I observed the scenery. Half of the city has buildings and skyscrapers (that looks like how it looks when you play SimCity zoomed out on the computer) and the other half of the city is just farmland and rusty old factories. The developed side and the undeveloped side.

Shanghai has two international airports. The airport I landed on is on the undeveloped side. This is probably because it is in the middle of nowhere. No one is disturbed by the sound of landing planes.

After I landed, I took the high speed magnet train (430 km per hour) to the real city, where it's surrounded by skyscrapers and taxis. There were green trees decorating the roads, and it was much warmer than Beijing. Beijing is snowing and freezing. It's warm there. Anyway, I hailed a cab. I don't read Chinese, so I just showed the cabbie a certain Mr. Jake Lynch's address.

Half an hour and 45 kuai later, I arrived. It was kind of intimidating. He's a financer so he lives in that section, I believe--really tall buildings, with mean security guards and receptionists concerned about if I really am who I say I am.

...Well, I am who I am. So I go up to the 24th story and his servant opens the door for me. I greet him and his wife. Besides that, I notice that the atmosphere is cold and tense. The white furniture (that looks new and unused) only adds to this feeling. He abruptly tells me that I have to fill out a form. I fill it out at the smooth table that is almost ethereal looking in the lighting. I note in my head that this would be a good scene for photography, if only I had brought a camera.

So I filled it out. He took it, studied it a bit, and asked me questions. It was difficult. He wasn't like the Exeter director who actually homeschooled his kids, so it is understandable that he doesn't know but...yeah. We didn't connect like I did with the Exeter director. It was choppy and he had to sit there and think up new questions. We didn't have a real conversation.

After a while, we went out for coffee. He didn't have any cash so I paid. After ending the interview there, we went back up to the apartment where he overpaid me because he didn't have any change. I feel bad about that. I should have just said "no, it's okay," and left.

It was alright, I guess. Not too bad. Not too good. He told me that he thought I was 'ready' for Andover, compared to some other people he interviewed. He actually thought I was a local at first, because I put English on my course list...what I meant was Language Arts. Not a real...language thing.

I think I was the only expatriate/non-local he interviewed, because when I asked the guy after me (I saw him when I came up with Mr. Lynch to get paid) a question, he was like "...wha?". I repeated it and he was like "...wha?" and then I gave up.

I got back to the airport and I ate at this fancy Italian restaurant (I walked all around and couldn't find anything so I just gave up in frustration and went there). I ordered spaghetti. My table was in between two fish-bowls they put for decoration, with real goldfish in it. I spent the whole meal twitching, taking deep breaths to remain calm, and wondering if I shouldn't move to another seat. Yay for my ichthyophobia. >_< At least the food was good.

After eating and checking in, I settled myself down at a bookstore near the gate, engrossing myself in one of Amy Tan's novels, waiting for the flight. After reading for two hours, I left and boarded the plane. I slept all the way through and landed back into Beijing.

I wanted my mom to pick me up, but she was like "no just take the shuttle bus k?" and I was like, "fine". On the way, I got ambushed by tons of "taxi drivers" (yeah, right - illegal ones) clouded in puffs of cigarette smoke asking me if they could take me home. I ignored them, bought a bus ticket, made it to the stop, and took a taxi home.

I went online for a while and then slept.

That was my day. That was my interview.

Perhaps things will swing in my favor. Perhaps not.

But in any case, I didn't die, and that was that.

11/16/04 04:04 pm - The insane adventures of Katie in Hong Kong

I could not sleep on the 14th - the night before. I vaguely remember dreaming, but that was it. Everything else was lying there, anticipating the dawn. I awoke before my mother came in at 5 am and told me to get dressed; dressed in a white sweater, pleated plaid skirt, stockings, heels, and a black Guess bag. I suppose some could denounce it as 'preppy', but this is a 'preppy' school.

So. After jamming toast down my throat and rushing to the airport, I say goodbye and find my way through customs and all that good stuff. After nearly losing my passport, I go check in; for check in, after waiting 20 minutes, someone told me I was in the line for the check in for planes that are going to Tokyo. I hurry to the Hong Kong line, get my boarding pass, get through security, and run as fast as I can to the gate.

I boarded just in time.

The feeling of flying again was amazing. Some 'seasoned travelers' don't notice, but I am still thrilled by the feeling of takeoff and landing, even though I've flown thirty, maybe forty, times. I apply my makeup as the plane is above a sea of clouds, pleased that new plum-colored eyeshadow looks good. For the rest of the flight, sans while eating the terribly tasteless airline food, I talk to thin air--practicing what I'm going to say. Yeh, I guess I got weird looks from the other passengers.

So I landed in Hong Kong. The landing was beautiful--gliding over water (the Hong Kong International Airport's on an island), where fishing boats look like mere toys, and rushing onto the runway. The first thing that I noticed was that it was muggy outside--75 degrees. Ah, well. I went through immigration/customs/all that good stuff and looked for a place to eat. The food on the plane was terrible--tasteless slush for "porridge", a stale muffin, a tiny roll, and canned pineapple [the "best" part].

I saw this place--some Spaghetti House or Sandwich House, I forget. The service was terrible, and I had to remind them that my sandwich was...ready. It was kind of expensive too. $45 Hong Kong dollars for what...? A sandwich and a small pot of yogurt. I should have ate at McDonalds. Pissed off, I go to the bathroom to check my makeup, and then go exchange my money. 500 kuai got me 480 HKD. Bought a train ticket to Central for 100.

The train was fast. Hong Kong Station in Central is several islands away. The view was good. Anyway, after arriving in Central, I hail a cab to Fairmont House. It turned out that it was this skyscraper that served as a bank and working place, methinks--there were lots of business dudes walking around and I didn't look out of place with my outfit.

Walking to the lobby, I ask for Phillips Exeter Academy. They tell me 21st floor. And the elevator...brings me up. I was a little nervous about it, but not really. I boldly walk in (hey, even if I'm not, I can pretend to be!) and ask. This dude named Naren escorts me in, tells me I'm early, and gives me the Exeter magazine to read so I don't get bored. The place was decorated nicely. There were lots of minature boat models, and interesting art pieces on the walls.

Eventually the two other students scheduled for the 2 PM interview arrived, and I checked them out warily. Two guys. I asked, and they told me they're applying for 10th grade (Lower). We had to fill out this form that the interviewer could look at for reference (about our activities and classes and all that good stuff).

As it turned out, my interviewer was the Director of Admissions.

We started out great, because his kids were homeschooled too, and as it turned out...with the exact same curriculum I use! So yeah. He was really impressed, I think.

1) I'm taking a load of hard classes this year. Plus, for middle school I was in IB.

2) My extracurriculars are very good. He was impressed that I've been published 7 times for writing, been on national TV (modeling), have not one but two agents, taken art 8 years, at my artwork (I brought my portfolio), the music (I play 4 instruments), community service and all that bragworthy stuff. I told him that I would have wrote more but the form only had that many lines.

3) I had a LOT to say about why I wanted to go to Exeter and he was like "wow, you've really done your homework". XD Because I was explaining about their famous alums, their departments, and the Harkness table, and how I would really love to go to their school! (Dropping in 1st choice, 1st choice a lot.) And I said that their admissions officers were really responsive---which they were. Other schools that are not going to be named here, didn't even RESPOND to any of my emails. One actually blocked me.

4) My questions, I guess, were pretty good. I asked him about vegetarian options (among other stuff), and he asked me why I was vegetarian and I showed him my passport picture and he was like O_O (because I was fat earlier...). But he told me that I can't stay at school for Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. :( I can for Easter though.

5) Flew to Hong Kong and found the place myself. Shows my "independence". I told him about flying to New York by myself and going to acting/modeling lessons there for two months.

The bottom line is that it was an awesome interview. Now I need to send this guy a thank you card. A Chinese-y one, so that he won't throw it away (souvenir value).

Then I went back to the airport, and got an early flight home. (My mom bought the 7 PM one, but the check-in guy got me the 5 PM one.) I bought souvenirs and wandered around the airport. They had Dior, Chanel, Prada, etc. stores, and I couldn't help but stare at the pretty haute couture bags and clothes. Didn't buy anything though...of course. And I wrote some reflections on the way home.

My mother picked me up, and that was that. I slept for a long while...and wow, it's taken me 2 hours to write this thing. But when I first started it, I was just waking up (2 PM. Hey, I need my sleep!).

I hope this information helps for Alyssa (if you haven't been interviewed yet? I know I saw the LFA thingy on your entry), Kip, and Met for their interviews.

Lots of <3, Katie

11/12/04 09:58 pm - Inspiration

After you've been through a bout of depression, inspiration seems to hit you--suddenly and unexpectedly. "Woe is me" has expired, at least for the time being, and you've moved onto greener pastures, breathing in the fresh air and soaking in the sunlight, wondering why you never saw this before.

And I am inspired. I've been drawing from dawn to now. Sketches that fill the margins of notebook paper that's supposed to contain only Algebra II problems. Neatly inked girls waiting to be clothed in screentone. However, they will have to wait until tomorrow--for I am cheap and buy the kind of screentone that is neither transparent nor sticky; the kind of screentone one needs a window and a sun to shine on the paper, turning it transparent; the kind of screentone I need to glue on--because the sun has set.

I'll post the finished one from yesterday, a murder thriller, and and that girl that still needs to be clothed in screentone.

Take a look.Collapse )

11/9/04 07:33 pm - Alienated

I talked with Allyekhrah (okay, so her real name's Katie but that just makes it more confusing since that's my name as well). She also lives in Beijing and an expatriate (She's German and goes to the German school). We're going to meet up on the 27th to wander around the city and go shopping.

That's something to look forward to.

I feel alienated and lonely these days. I amuse myself by staring into a compact mirror and painting designs and stars over my face with creme eyeshadow in iridescent shades that substitutes for face paint. I drown myself with steaming hot water in the shower and dry myself with a fluffy towel in the hopes of finding some happiness in it. However, I don't. Even going online has lost its luster.

Does anyone have any suggestions of what to do besides wasting silvery-blue eyeshadow and dulling my time away at the controller and Nintendo, in front of a tv screen?

11/7/04 12:25 pm - Screenshot

So I don't mess up your friends pages :(Collapse )

Need I say anymore? Now I just need to write one more essay. I have writer's block though. :(

11/5/04 09:08 pm - Shopping

Today I went shopping by myself. I find that I do this activity better by myself. I rarely try anything on when I'm with a relative or a friend, for the I constantly fear they'll say I look dumb in such and such outfit.

I bought several items acknowledging the coming interview and Exeter's dress code (wishful thinking - I haven't been accepted yet, but it's nice to dream).

At this one place, I helped the manager sell this expensive jacket to someone else (it wasn't intentional, they were squabbling over if it was polyester or not and if anyone knew English so they could read the label) and she gave me a 30% discount and another 100 kuai off. <3 I want to go there again.

The taxi driver on the way home was interesting. We had a good conversation.

I'm going to Hong Kong by myself on the 15th, returning the same day. 8 AM flight. 2 PM interview. 7 PM flight back. I love flying by myself. I feel free.

Mmm, that's about it.
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