How do you see the world around you these days? Do you still perceive it as something simple and beautiful, whichever part you’re in at the moment?

Imagine waking up to the same, old reality for the past 4.5 years. You’re silently wondering whether your ailing father will ever be alright again. You’ve decided to push aside your own feelings for too long, only so you can function properly – although maybe not emotionally. Underneath your numbness and indifference, there are feelings you’d rather not describe. What for? After all, the world always likes you better when you look happy. It doesn’t matter if you aren’t. Who really cares anyway?

You drown yourself in work. They say it’s your escape besides writing. You’ve been a workaholic since you couldn’t even remember when. Why? It’s so much easier to do that than to accept the fact that you often feel…lonely, on the inside. You know you’re not the clingy, striving-for-the-attention type, but…how do you reach out to the world outside yourself, without sounding so bloody pathetic and being full of self-pity? You don’t. You’ve never been taught how, and you’re not even sure you really want to learn that. Most of the time, you’re used to being on your own. Miss Independent, in a way. They say you know how to deal with solitude very well that you’re almost an expert at it. (Is that a sarcasm? you silently question.)

And you no longer want to wonder if it’s a good thing or not. (Do you?) All you know is that this is just your survival instinct kicking in, your self-defense mechanism against the intolerance of the world outside yourself.

The question is: how long will this last, before you start growing too attached to this self-made armour – or falling apart?

You’re only open to that one particular person. (And oh, how much you’ve missed him since last year.) With him, you just can never lie. You can be yourself and it’s okay. He knows you all too well anyway. He’s your brotherly best friend. It’s a shame that the two of you can never be more than that, because you also know how he is.

And you’ve also accepted that fact long ago. It’s much safer this way: the two of you care about each other deeply, exchanging the occasional ‘I love you’s without the possibilities – and complications – of a romantic relationship.

Another question: will you ever get to feel that safe with another guy – this time, a straight one – that you fall in love with? Or much safer? Or else, whatever that may be??

Seriously, will something like that ever happen to you?

See? This is why you’re romantically-challenged. Your faith in love is still frail, hanging by a thread so thin. You still want to believe, but at the same time you’re afraid to hope. You’re afraid that you might end up getting hurt and feeling disappointed all over again. After everything that has happened, what makes you believe that it’ll be different this time?

Anyway, you don’t want to dwell over that again. All’s been said and done. It’s time to bloody move on.

You’re pretty glad for friends, hobbies, and varieties of entertainment out there. (Too bad, you don’t always have enough money or time – or even both – for the last bit.) They help you to pass the time. If friends are busy or you’re too tired to hang out with anybody, thank God for today’s technology. Or you can focus on your hobbies or choose one of the types of the entertainment out there. It’s a good thing that you live in the capital city.

Still, you have to be creative somehow. Don’t let your inspirations run dry.

Speaking of inspirations, there are many things you can write about these days. The world is getting crazier, and apathy is spreading like poison. There are nuclear weapons, toxic gas, and children die from them. Some people still fret about what women should and shouldn’t be wearing in public, despite other much, more serious and urgent issues to deal with. An underage driver crashed his car, killing half a dozen other people one night at the weekend. He’s now recovering slowly – and about to face some serious juvenile charges.

And there are still many more, as always…

You walk the familiar streets almost every night now, but this time with a new, growing sense of awareness and fear. It was because that fateful Tuesday night. An hour after you’d been safely home, a shot was fired and heard in that same area. A police officer dropped dead on the sidewalk…




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