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UPDATE 2 Apr 2017 - This site is no longer maintained, please visit if you're interested in more recent writing.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, June 20, 2015

Before and after.

It's been more than a week since class results came out. Some people might have known that right after my exams ended on 29 May, I flew to NYC for my older brother's wedding and graduation, followed by a short trip to Vermont, before going back to Cambridge on 9 June just in case I was called for a viva the next day. Thankfully I wasn't, though I realised by then that perhaps, I might not have gotten what I wanted. Results were supposed to be out on 11 June, and the afternoon was spent rather anxiously refreshing Camsis (the internal portal) while trying to relax. Fisher dinner (the annual May ball equivalent social event for Fisher House) was that night, and it turns out that results were posted on the Part II Zoology notice board first, and I dropped by to check on my way to FH.

And indeed, I did not get what I wanted. Less than stellar results. Decent of course, good grades. Essentially what (almost) everyone else got. It wasn't surprising, and I've been semi-preparing myself for it since months ago, though I don't think that made me study any less. But I realise even up to now, I'm still not entirely over it. I'm not angry, nor do I regret anything (regarding academics). I did try my very bestest to get the best result. And I failed in that objective, and so am resigned to admitting that perhaps I am really just not cut out for that grade. But occasionally, I still do catch myself thinking why is it that I just can't. I honestly don't know what else I could have done, and I wish I knew.

I've been having a packed schedule which had been distracting me, with meet-ups and socials and packing to do. And then a disaster of a morning after St John's College May ball on 17 June trying to get to Barcelona to meet my parents and some somewhat-distant relatives of ours who live there. Currently in Barcelona now, after a day of visiting La Sagrada Familia, La Rhumbla and then peach/apricot/nectarine picking in said-relative's friends orchard, getting back only at 2am. Was trying to sleep, when thoughts drifted back to my grades, and I thought okay perhaps it's time I tried to get this out.

So much for 'the point of exams', I will admit I am still rather obsessed with grades. It is the first time I'm graduating, after sitting an important exam (ie RGS' sec four examinations didn't count), when I did not get the top grades, and that feeling does kinda suck, even though I know it doesn't really matter. Life goes on anyway, and I am actually really interested to know what I think of this matter many decades down the road.


  1. Whilst reading this post (which I thought was an honest reflection), I was reminded of how I had similar self dissatisfaction when it came to academia. There were times I observed a friend digesting research articles so quickly while my understanding fell short on many instances poring through reviews. Although one would say comparison is unhealthy, I believe obeserving circumstances, whatever it be, around you makes a good start for reflection. Anyway, I longed as you did to 'improve' and wondered why sometimes things just 'fell short' for me.

    I've considered hard and have resigned that God has withheld my understanding in certain areas. Try as I may on my own strength, but ultimately God is in control.

    I too believe in a God. I also believe that the most important test that we should focus on scoring well... is to acquire a heart that fears and loves Him while on earth. Of great importance is this test because the answers we write (nurturing of one's heart) in this brief lifetime determines the rest of Eternity -- how close one is to God ?
    If a high intellect ability would helped me better pass this test, perhaps then I would have been one of those. But I know deep down that a heart such as mine would have taken that intellect and ran with it.....Far away from Him.

    Sometimes..when the thought of wondering of why I didn't do better creeps back I'm persuaded that God loves me enough to draw me on the right path. The next step would be to submit all... including my human reason and what seems to matter to the world...

    I read this in an ancient book on thoughts about God.
    "Child, if you come to be subject to the lord prepare your soul for testing. Set straight your heart, and be steadfast, and do not be hasty in a time of distress. Cling to Him, and do not stand aloof so that you may be strengthened at your end... "

    I wish you God's will Jocelyn. :)
    Seek Him in sleeplessness.

    1. Thanks for your thoughts, that was beautiful (: And an apt reminder of what we're here to do - His will, for His kingdom and eternal life. Reading it was really comforting, and I'm glad you shared that with me. All the best to you too! (: