In brief...

I'm a Nature-lover, aspiring conservationist, and wannabe traveller in search of outdoor adventure.
My interests vary from conservation to education to heritage to Nature (biodiversity & wildlife) to outdoor activities to life in general.
They occupy most of my waking moment.
Do read my blogs, follow me on Twitter (@jocelynesze) and friend me on Facebook (subject to my discretion). Visit my Nature blog, Nature Rambles, at

UPDATE 2 Apr 2017 - This site is no longer maintained, please visit if you're interested in more recent writing.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

(yet another) reflection of 2011

So it's almost the end of 2011. It's been an amazing year for me. Thank God for my parents, who are liberal enough to let me take a gap year. Thank God for my friends, who made this year an amazing one. Thank God for everything He gave me this year, I am truly blessed.

I've been to 6 different countries, 11 different places. Tokyo, Bangkok, Wiang Kaen, Tioman, Batam, Kathmandu, Khumbu region, London, Cambridge, Hanoi, Sapa region.
I've learned to DIVE.
I've (attempted to) climb a mountain in the Himalayas, Island Peak.
I've worked with animals, both alive and dead (in alcohol) in the Singapore Zoo and the Raffles Museum.
I've helped build a house in Batam.
I moved house.
I started my nature blog.
I started my driving lessons.
And most importantly, I've managed to keep my friends, the ones that matter.

And throughout the year, I think I've gained much. I learned how to interact in a work environment, to grow up. Not that I was immature before, but less hesitant and shy I guess. I have a better idea of what the real world is like, and how many things aren't the way it should be.

I now have a better idea of what I want, and what I don't want, to do in the future.

I have much to be thankful for, especially in the upcoming year. 9 more months of relative "freedom", before studies re-commence. And in this 9 months, I want to do things that I've always wanted to do, and try things I never thought I would do.

My resolution in 2012, is to clear the checklist of things I want to do in my gap year.

This Christmas, I haven't had many presents, in fact probably only 2. But it's the most awesome present ever.

Bubbles, are some of the most beautiful things ever. Something about bubbles bring joy and delight. Remember the times when you were young, and you went to the park to blow bubbles. And all the little kids would gather round, giggling, chasing bubbles.

They are simply mesmerizing. Maybe because a bubble is a perfect sphere, maybe because of its iridescent sheen, maybe because of its transient and insubstantial nature. Maybe because it light, maybe because it is transparent, maybe because it represents a freedom that we cannot attain.

I shall count down to the new year blowing bubbles. Because bubbles bring joy everywhere :)

Thursday, December 29, 2011

no matter how much i feel like simply curling under my blankets and sleeping right when i reach home, i never do. somehow, there are just things to do. or perhaps i just think i have many things to do. or like the illusion of it.

in any case, i am feeling pretty accomplished at the moment despite the late hour and my exhaustion and the prospect of work tomorrow. just made some concrete moves towards my plan for 2012.

the last 9 months of my gap "year" (technically it's 21 months). i need to make full use of it. there are many things that i want to do in my gap year that i have yet to fulfill. my last chance. ideas and suggestions are swimming around in my head, like planktonic larvae drifting in the ocean, waiting for some firm substrate to latch upon.

i'd like to reflect upon the year of 2011 right now, in fact my reflections for the year are also swimming around my head. but i guess i will have to deal with it over the next two days, because i really need to sleep right now.

somehow, reflections for 2011 aren't exactly at the top of my mind though i do feel their presence. i'm definitely more preoccupied with what happens AFTER the new year. immediately after, to be exact.

for those not in the know, i am going off to HK for my final scholarship interview. and then right after that i will get the results of university application. and within a week, i will know the scholarship application results. everything hinges on the first two weeks of jan. when i will be, incidentally, away in Bali on holiday.

on a completely unrelated note, when i was young(er), i always thought it would be cool to be a secret agent. still do in fact, but i know it's not for me. i just watched Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol with my parents who randomly had some free tickets. from reading all those novels involving (ex) secret agents and all those movies, it's the coolest job ever i think. gotta be super fit and sharp. i sometimes wonder if all those stuff we read/watch are just fiction or really what's happening.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Reminder about Life #5

Hold On Tightly
by: Unknown Author

Hold on tightly to what is truly important in life. 

Hold on to faith; it is the source of believing that all things are possible. It is fiber and strength of a confident soul. 

Hold on to hope; it banishes doubt and enables attitudes to be positive and cheerful. 

Hold on to trust; it is at the core of fruitful relationships that are secure and content. 

Hold on to love; it is life's greatest gift of all, for it shares, cares, and gives meaning to life. 

Hold on to family and friends; they are the most important people in your life, and they make the world a better place. They are your roots and the beginnings that you grew from; they are the vine that has grown through time to nourish you, help you on your way, and always remain close by.

Hold on to all that you are and all that you have learned, for these things are what make you unique. Don't ignore what you feel and what you believe is right and important; your heart has a way of speaking louder than your mind.

Hold on to your dreams; achieve them diligently and honestly. Never take the easy way or surrender to deceit. Remember others on your way and take time to care for their needs. Enjoy the beauty around you. Have the courage to see things differently and clearly. 

Make the world a better place one day at a time, and don't let go of the important things that give meaning to your life.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

It's 15 minutes to Christmas! And I'm sitting all alone at home watching The King's Speech and having an online presence.

Had a great Christmas Eve, waking up late, going for breakfast at Chin Bee Chin Confectionary (along East Coast Road, it's really awesome),  grocery shopping, then baking banana bread/apple crumble, doing household chores, great dinner with family and then stoning at home (:

No Christmas trees or presents this year, and Christmas shopping is non-existent, but I feel just as contented.

Christmas is made out to be a joyous occasion, not because of presents, but because of Christ's coming to us, born to us on this day (: 

So I'm contented enough that God has blessed me with so much this year, and am able to have a nice dinner with my family sans older brother. 

Merry Christmas to everyone, and God bless! Be glad that God sent His only son to us, rejoice in His birth! :D

Babies are all cute
A nephew of my guide in Sapa.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Reminder about Life #4

Climb 'Til Your Dream Comes True

by: Helen Steiner Rice

Often your tasks will be many, 
And more than you think you can do. 
Often the road will be rugged
And the hills insurmountable, too. 
But always remember, 
The hills ahead
Are never as steep as they seem, 
And with Faith in your heart
Start upward
And climb 'til you reach your dream. 
For nothing in life that is worthy
Is ever too hard to achieve
If you have the courage to try it, 
And you have the faith to believe. 
For faith is a force that is greater
Than knowledge or power or skill, 
And many defeats turn to triumph
If you trust in God's wisdom and will. 
For faith is a mover of mountains, 
There's nothing that God cannot do, 
So, start out today with faith in your heart, 
And climb 'til your dream comes true!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

feels like a lifetime since I last blogged. something proper.

So the interviews are over, and now it's just a waiting game. They weren't too bad I guess, I've definitely had worse interviews before. But could have been much better. If I had still remembered what I learned in A level Chemistry :/ which I didn't bother reviewing cos I didn't know I would be asked about Chem! Nonetheless, it's all over, and all I can do now is just wait for the results to be out. Getting in would be a real relief. Otherwise, I would have to crack my head and decide between Sheffield and York.

It's rather late now and I gotta wake up early tomorrow, so not gonna say more, but just a few things I've read recently that are rather interesting:
Why I Stood Up and Spoke Out by Abigail Borah from Middlebury College
Limpeh is Foreign Talent

I totally don't feel the (commercial) Christmas vibe at all. I guess it's something that you lose once your relatives decide that you're too old for presents. Christmas is about celebrating the birth of Christ and sharing the love (: (though I don't think I'm doing much of that either :/ getting very self-centred, oh dear ><)

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Reminder about Life #3

The Road Not Taken

by: Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, 
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth; 
Then took the other, just as fair, 
And having perhaps the better claim, 
Because it was grassy and wanted wear; 
Though as for that passing there
Had worn them really about the same, 
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black. 
Oh, I kept the first for another day! 
Yet knowing how way leads to way, 
I doubted if I should ever come back. 
Somewhere ages and ages hence: 
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I -
I took the one less traveled by, 
And that has made all the difference.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Reminder about Life #2


by: Ralph Waldo Emerson

To laugh often and much; 
To win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; 
To earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; 
To appreciate beauty, 
To find the best in others, 
To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, 
A garden patch or a redeemed social condition; 
To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. 
This is to have succeeded.

Sunday, December 04, 2011

Greetings from Cambridge!

In Cambridge for 3 days for my university interview. 2 interviews, to be exact. And they're academic interviews, meaning I need to remember all my A level stuff, plus all the others that I am supposedly interested in! Ahh :/

I keep hearing "aiya you'll be able to get it one lah", but honestly, it's damn hard. Everyone who applies probably have the same creds as me. It's not as easy to differentiate myself from the rest of the crowd, as compared to when in singapore. Haiz ah wells, still gotta try my best. And pray really hard!

The city itself is really pretty though! All the old buildings and architecture, the river and the blue skies. Mostly spent the day walking around, familiarising with the streets and buildings. Went to the Church of Our Lady and the English Martyrs for mass. One of those old cathedrals, with glass-stained windows and the typical cross-shaped layout. And the choir includes a clarinet, violin, guitar players! Also spent more than an hour in a bookstore. It's awesome, it's like heaven for bookphilics! It spans 4 floors, and has a diverse range of topics. Reminds me greatly of Borders, which very sadly closed down :( But in any case I spent close to 100pds in that bookstore. I'll probably go London and get more books still.

It's rather cold here (though no where as near as up in the mountain in Nepal), and I suspect if I really do have the fortune of coming here next year, I'll get fat. Chocolate bars are only 50pc!

On a random note, I think my body acclimatises to different time zones pretty well. I'm not feeling jet-lagged, while my dad has already crashed.

Got a day more to prepare for the Slaughter! Though from what I've read so far, it's really not supposed to be scary.