read, watch, and listen | what i've been loving lately

Tuesday, May 14, 2019


A little while ago, I'd devoted into the act of writing good, meaningful pieces. But among critical long form articles and personal essays as candidate for a future memoir, I also miss the act of blogging just for the fun of it. Part of constructing this blog as a memorabilia of who I am also includes sharing with everyone (or no one in particular) about what I love.

There's something almost intimate about it  – when you want to really know someone, ask them what they love. Whether or not we realise it, the things we read, watch, or listen to, all become fragments that form us as a whole. For someone else, catching a glimpse of that is giving them the chance, momentarily, to look right through you. Right past your status, or your attributes – e.g. your occupation, skills, and studies.

Three hobbies of mine happen to be reading, watching, and listening. I like to think that it's essential to feed yourself with multi-sensory stimuli on a daily basis – but maybe that's just me. So written below is my "Loved Lately" list, comprised of titles I've been loving in these three areas.

Melbourne Street Violinist Dreams to Build Australia's Economy

Monday, May 6, 2019


The musician is sitting on his stool. He plays and smiles, as commotion builds. Peak hour is approaching in Melbourne Central Station. Faintly, amidst the noise – an eerie sound of a violin.

It was windy on the day I met Shen. The 86-year-old was hauling an oversized backpack. In his hands was a tattered erhu case. On his head, a red baseball cap which read, “King of Beers.”

A long-time player of the erhu, Shen started when he was a factory worker in China. The erhu, a two-stringed Chinese fiddle, introduces Melbourne to his Chinese culture. Shen has been playing for the past 7 years, and since then, has made quite a name for himself. When I ask Melburnians about ‘the grandpa with the Chinese violin,’ faces light up in recollection.

Kevin, a staff of Melbourne Central Station, monitors the gates and often spots Shen by one of the pillars. “I can’t tell you much about him, though,” says Kevin, “but all I know is he’s smiling all the time!”

The musician: Shen and his erhu outside of Melbourne Central Station. Joanne Amarisa

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