Sunday, 31 December 2017

How Did Farah, The Fangirl Fare This 2017?

I'm working on my personal reflection of this year but I'm not sure if the post will see a light or not cause it may be uncomfortably personal to be shared with the strangers on the internet. So, while I'm still contemplating about publishing my personal reflection of this year, I thought to myself, why don't I give Farah, The Fangirl a space to evaluate her life as a fangirl?

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Hello, everyone! 

This is Farah, the Fangirl. For a lack of better words, 2017 was achingly bittersweet for me. Honestly, 2017 was such a real emotional roller coaster ride. So many things happened - good and bad, happy and sad, that I can't help but to feel completely drained and overwhelmed at the end.

K-concerts / K-shows

I had a time of my life when I got to attend 3 shows of Sweet Sorrow's Harmony Concert and met them at the backstage. As shallow as it may sound, it was one of my life highlights for this year. It took me around 3 months before I completely moved on with my life! I know it was unhealthy to take that long to move on but I can't help to react that way after 7 years of waiting and wishing it to happen.

Sweet Sorrow (스윗 소로우) & I
#myfirstandlasttimemeetingthecompletesweetsorrow

However, I also had a fair share of disappointment when I had to miss WeAreYoung's first concert in South Korea, SEVENTEEN's Diamond Edge Concert in Toronto and  Antenna Music's With Antenna: The Label Concert Concert in New Jersey. While money was not really a problem, time and distance were the absolute obstacles. From a fangirl perspective, often, I was at a wrong place at a wrong time. Yet, realistically, I was actually at a right place at a right time.

K-pop / K-music

2017 might be my slowest year as a K-pop / K-music fangirl and I think I'm okay with this fact? I'm actually quite happy because I'm no longer emotionally invested like I used to. I did not really listen to the recently released songs. I did not watch any performances of any music shows. In fact, I have yet to listen to Super Junior's album though I still (reluctantly) identified myself as an ELF. Well, it's not only Super Junior, I have yet to listen to EXO's, SEVENTEEN's, and BTS's new albums as well.

K-dramas


Korean Dramas That I've Watched Or Still Watching in 2017

It was a different case for K-dramas. I think I watched too many K-dramas this year, now that I started to lose interest in K-pop. The number of K-dramas that I finished watching this year was insanely unhealthy. If you read the Happy 3-Months Anniversary, you can see that I actually watched almost 24 dramas in 3 months! There are still quite a lot of K-dramas that I want to watch but I have to put them on hold simply because I don't have enough time.

Korean Dramas That I've Watched Or Still Watching in 2017

K-variety shows

I watched almost none K-variety shows this year. I stopped watching Running Man ages ago. I have yet to pick up any new K-variety shows though I'm interested with few of them. I may have watched those short K-variety shows here and there like 3 Meals A Day and Winner's Youth Over Flowers but the only show that I'm following religiously until now is 2 Days 1 Night. Too bad it's been awhile since 2 Days 1 Night aired a new episode :/

Variety Show That I Watched In 2017

K-entertainment news that affected me the most

Sung Jin Hwan's departure from Sweet Sorrow
I almost cried when I came back from this work to this news. I refrained myself from crying because I didn't think it was my right for me to cry. His reason of leaving Sweet Sorrow and music industry was far more important than my feelings! Sung Jin Hwan indirectly played a big role in my last teenage years and early 20s. He was the soothing and calming voice whenever I struggled with my life in Subang Jaya and Canada. My heart still hurts whenever I think that he is fighting so hard with his inner demons all this while while smiling and making jokes all the time. With unfortunate incidents keep happening in South Korean entertainment industry recently, I earnestly wish he will not be triggered! 

Please, please, please, Sung Jin Hwan! Hope you will find your precious yourself. Hope you will find your happiness back! Hope you will find the right help and the help that you needed! Please be happy, Sung Jin Hwan!

Kim Joo Hyuk's passing
I saw an Instagram post of Kim Joo Hyuk's passing written in Hangeul when I was at the work. I had to refresh Soompi for few times to get a confirmation cause my Hangeul is still not that good and I wanted to get more details. I cried a bucket when Soompi updated the news. Didn't know that I will get affected that much because honestly, I do not consider myself as his avid fan. He may have slipped into my subconscious mind whenever I watched 2 Days 1 Night that I felt a void and so beaten when I read the news. Or maybe because I just finished his new-and-last drama 2 days before his passing.

Super Junior's Choi Siwon and Bugsy's controversy
Aaaaaa, Choi Siwon! What could have been?! If you guys have been following my since few years ago, you must know that Choi Siwon is the one who dragged me into this madness that is K-pop. I have mindlessly waited for him for 2 years to finish his army service and make a glorious comeback. But, all the time spent waiting for him kinda went into a drain when his dog's controversy came to surface. Now that I think about it, this controversy may act as a catalyst of my loss of interest in K-pop in general. Consequently, I sadly have to say that Choi Siwon is no longer my ultimate bias!

Good bye Siwon! It has been a fun 7 years but I think this is it. This is the end. I may not like you like I used to but you may find me smiling and laughing at you sometimes. It's a habit. Please don't misunderstand! :p

SHINee's Onew's controversy
I'm a casual fan of SHINee or Onew to be exact. I listen to them whenever I'm tired hearing my favourite songs or when they released a song that suit my taste. So, I was utterly speechless when I read the news about his sexual harassment controversy. SHINee's Onew might be one of the last SM's idols that I would think of to be involved in this kind of controversy. Not that I have any expectation of him but it felt this incident happened out of nowhere.

SHINee's Jonghyun's passing
Just when I thought 2017 could not get any worse, this happened. Jonghyun's passing felt like a wake up call and a reminder that these idols are human too and they have their own struggles - not like I think of them as a lesser being or a product all this time. Can't never listen to SHINee the same way again :/ His passing also brings mental health problems into a light again. While I was quite sad with his passing, I think his passing was a great reminder to all fans around the world that you may have no idea what's happening with your idols behind their stage personas. So, please don't judge a book by its cover and please remember to be kind, always!

To everyone who's struggling and fighting your inner demons, please remember that you matter and someone in this world loves you more than you love yourself!

Thursday, 28 December 2017

Scenic Snowshoe Tour Of Lake Louise At Lake Louise Ski Resort

My team and I were invited to experience few activities offered by Lake Louise Ski Resort (LLSR). I RSVP'd to the invitation with my main goal to go tubing. However, luck was not on my side as tubing is yet to be available at LSSR. The lady in charge told me that she booked a 2-Hour Scenic Snowshoe Tour for me instead and I'm always welcomed to go tubing next year. So, I guess I'll go back to LLSR next year for tubing? Hehe :D

So, off I went to LLSR on December 14 by a bus provided by LLSR. It took us around 45 minutes from Banff to LLSR. Honestly, I was feeling quite down when we were on the way to LLSR because the weather was crappy and very dull. It was cloudy all the way from Banff to Lake Louise. I don't know, luck is always not on my side whenever I plan to go somewhere or to do something :(

Scenic Snowshoe Tour Of Lake Louise At Lake Louise Ski Resort

Anyway, right after I arrived at the base of LLSR, I went to the Guides' Cabin where I met my guide for that day. He walked me through the necessary paperwork and gave me the equipment needed for this tour. We also exchanged information that we deemed necessary like my expectations and concerns. Turned out, all these were not a problem because I was the only guest who signed up for that scenic snowshoe tour session. Yes, you read it right! I was the only person. So, I kind of get a special treatment from my guide and our course was fully tailored to my ability :)

Scenic Snowshoe Tour Of Lake Louise At Lake Louise Ski Resort

We took a 15 minutes gondola ride up to the mountain to go to our starting point. I told my guide that I was quite bummed with the weather that day but lo and behold, I totally ate my words when we reached certain altitude. The view was surreal! It was spectacular. It was nothing like I ever seen before. I was speechless for the rest of our gondola ride. You really have to see the view with your own eyes because all the picture that I put in this post do not make justice of the view!

Scenic Snowshoe Tour Of Lake Louise At Lake Louise Ski Resort

Once we reached our starting point, my guide helped me with my snowshoe cause I'm such a princess -.-'' Walhal, sebenarnya, gelabah lebih dan terlebih takut. You should know by now, that winter and its entirety and I do not get along very well. We started walking along the trails while enjoying the vast view. My guide also started explaining about our surrounding - the mountains, plants, wildlife, while we were walking along the trails. I have to say that my guide did a very excellent job in explaining and supplying information about Banff National Park and its components during the tour. I learnt so many new and interesting stuff that I felt so happy.

Scenic Snowshoe Tour Of Lake Louise At Lake Louise Ski Resort

The whole tour was quite breezy and fun except when we had to walk on slanted surface. Only Allah knows how afraid I was when we had to walk on those slanted surfaces :( Overall and surprisingly, snowshoeing was not as hard as I expected. In fact, it was pretty manageable for someone who is not fit enough like me. But, I might feel this way because this tour is rated as easy on LLSR's website.

Scenic Snowshoe Tour Of Lake Louise At Lake Louise Ski Resort

Thank you so much Lake Louise Ski Resort for having me for this Scenic Snowshoe Tour. I truly appreciate it! I got to cross off one thing from my bucket list and for that, I am eternally grateful! :)

Wednesday, 27 December 2017

My Songs Of December 2017

This December was not that breezy compare to the last month. While alhamdulillah, I started to feel less lonely, there were so much thing happened in this month (good and bad) that affected my whole emotions. These 4 songs will definitely make me remember this December 2017.

Sweet Sorrow (스윗소로우) - Beautiful

Sung Jin Hwan, I'll always remember you as the voice that always make me smile and happy! Starting my day to your voice and this beautiful song definitely help me to go through my mundane everyday life :)

Crush (크러쉬) - Beautiful

Wanna One (워너원) - Beautiful (뷰티풀)

Eric Nam (에릭남) - Bravo, My Life!

I have always loved the meaning of this song since I discovered this song few years ago. Now, it made me super happy that we got Eric's version of this song. Bravo, my life!

Monday, 25 December 2017

A Love So Beautiful (2017)

A Love So Beautiful was my second Chinese drama this year after Love O2O. I put this show on my to watch list after seeing its poster on the regular streaming sites that I use to watch Korean dramas. However, I decided to watch it despite not having enough time to squeeze another show on my schedule after I received endless Whatsapp messages from my sister raving about this drama. My initial reaction after getting those messages from my sister was. "Wow! Show, you must have been really really good eh?" simply because they came from my sister who's quite cynical and judgemental with my habit of watching Korean dramas and my choices of Korean dramas.

Snippet of the drama (from Viki)
It tells the love story of two childhood sweethearts that spans 19 years: a proud genius boy and a cute girl with a lot of energy. Chen Xiao Xi is a cute and small girl with a lot of positive energy. She gets to know Jiang Chen, a tall and proud genius boy, at school and tries everything to pursue him. The drama depicts the beautiful and pure heart throbbing love of seventeen years olds, but also delves into the topic of making mistakes and how to find back to each other again.


A Love So Beautiful (2017)
Credit: Here

My thoughts
What a sweet and beautiful show! If you can get diabetes from watching dramas, this show would be one of those dramas. It was so sweet, probably too sweet to the point my head, my heart, and my mouth hurt. My head and my heart hurt because I couldn't handle the sweetness and cuteness of the show while my mouth hurts because I kept grinning and smiling throughout the whole show. I have lost count how many times I squealed and said, "OMG! That was so cute!" that I hope my roommates will not think that I'm crazy or anything. lol!

Honestly, I thought I'm over with high school dramas and likes now that I'm nearing mid 20s, but oh boy, was I wrong. The show proved to me that I can still get giddy and over excited over high school dramas. Of course, we got a glimpse of their adulthood too but the majority of the show was concentrated on their high school years that I'm still going to call this show a high school drama.

It was easy watch and enjoyable at most times. However, admittedly, not all parts of the show sit well with me. I did feel frustrated sometimes on how self-centered Chen Xiao Xi can be and how Jiang Chen is not expressive enough. Why is it so hard for you to smile, Jiang Chen? I'm also not fond of how the show played with the timeskip after high school and how they resolved conflicts between the Chen Xiao Xi and Jiang Chen. But, I'm generous enough not to let my frustration affected my whole experience because this show was so cute and it deserved some love!

I highly recommend this drama if you want to watch something cute and sweet! *Please count how many times I mentioned sweet or cute* Or, if you are looking to watch something just for the pure entertainment! :) 

Sunday, 24 December 2017

Hospital Ship (병원선) (2017)

Hospital Ship (병원선) was one of the recently aired dramas (I wrote this post a month ago?) that I decided to watch cause I thought, "why not?"

Snippet of the drama (from Wikipedia)
Story about young doctors that provide medical care to the locals who live in rural villages via hospital ship that sails around the little islands. Song Eun Jae is an immensely talented surgeon. There was a time when the hospital ship was just used for standard checkups and administering medicine. With Song Eun Jae on board, it can provide complicated surgery. She has seen a lot of success as a surgeon, but also a lot of struggles in her family life. When an unfortunate incident leads her to a ship instead of a prestigious hospital. She has little compassion for the stubborn elderly patients. 

Kwak Hyun is the emotional opposite of his senior doctor, Song Eun Jae. Growing up with a father who is a lauded humanitarian, Kwak Hyun strives to be a warm and caring person. He heals not just with medicine but a smile. It seems natural that he works at his father’s ship, but Kwak Hyun also has some emotional scars. He cannot match Song Eun Jae’s medical skills, but he is infinitely better at connecting with patients. 

Kim Jae Geol has Hallyu looks and an extensive lineage in medicine. His father is a respected doctor. Growing up, his dad always preferred his brilliant brother, which led Jae Geol to become a loner at heart. His father was obsessed with western medicine. As a form of rebellion, Kim Jae Gol studied oriental medicine, much to his father’s disapproval. His goal in boarding the ship was to escape his father’s shadow. At the ship, however, he must work under Song Eun Jae, who is just as strict, emotionless and disdainful of oriental medicine. Now, these three doctors have to put aside their polar opposite personalities in order to treat their patients. As they all soon learn, working for your fellow humans has its own way of bringing people together

Hospital Ship (병원선)
Credit: Here

My thoughts
What a letdown. I jumped into this drama with no expectation and I finished watching it with dissatisfaction. Yes, I did love some of the aspects in this drama like its warmth, friendships, etc, but overall, this drama left a bitter taste in my mouth. Maybe because it was too long and it did not have that engaging plot. They should just make Hospital Ship 16 episodes drama instead of 20.

Few useless things that I picked up from this drama, almost from every episodes were "Kang Min Hyuk really has a good body proportion!" and "Ha Ji Won does not look like a woman in her late 30s!"

That's it, guys!

I don't recommend this drama unless if you really want to waste your time or you are big fan one of the leads. I mean, I can understand watching a drama just because your bias in it cause I do it all the time. Haha!

Wednesday, 20 December 2017

Beautiful Day

Snowy Cascade Mountain

Banff has such a great weather today! All I can think about when I was walking to my meeting this morning was, "Wow! Today is the perfect day to go skiing or snowboarding." The nice weather really makes me want to stay out and explore things and places but I need my sweet rest and beauty sleep. Hopefully the weather tomorrow will be as nice as today.

Saturday, 16 December 2017

How Can Malaysians Work Legally In Canada?

How Can Malaysians Work Legally In Canada?

Assalamualaikum and hi guys!

This would be the first somewhat informative post of this blog. Usually, I don't write about this kind of stuff cause I prefer having face to face interaction whenever I talk about something that is somewhat and potentially beneficial but I have been receiving a lot of similar comments and questions regarding this topic. So, I thought it would be easier and time saving to address this thing in a single post.

But first, let me remind you of few things!

First of all, this post is NOT for someone who is looking to find a white collar job in Canada or for people who are looking to emigrate to Canada.

Secondly, I have NO personal experience with few points that I'm going to mention later. I learned about all of that from my reading and my interaction with people who come to Canada and work in Canada using that way. So, the points that I'm going to make may not be detailed and accurate enough.

Farah at Lake Louise Ski Resort
Me at Lake Louise Ski Resort, recently. 
Short background about me
I'm currently holding a 3 years post graduation work permit, which allows me to work any jobs with any employers in Canada (with few exceptions) until May 2019. So far, I only have experience in hotel industry in Canada so I can only comment about this industry. I'm currently trying to find a better job, preferably white collar job in tourism industry which will help me to achieve my goal but let just leave it right there, shall we?

All this while, I could not respond properly to the comments and questions like, "Bestnya Farah kerja kat Canada. Macam mana nak kerja dekat Canada?" or "Agak-agak saya ni boleh ke kerja dekat Canada?" or something along those lines cause I have no idea how. As I mentioned above, I'm holding a post graduation work permit which I get because I graduated from one of the universities here. I totally have no idea how people like most of my readers can come to Canada and work here legally.

But, that has changed since I met few Malaysians for the past few months. I learned something interesting from them. They are all here under Working Holiday Program. Yup, you read it right! There is a Working Holiday Program to Canada for Malaysians! *what a good news* *throwing confetti to the air*


Working Holiday Canada for Malaysians


Small rainbow at Niagara Falls
Niagara Falls

There is only one agency that manages this Working Holiday Canada program for Malaysians. It is the Speedwing. So, by hook or by crook, you have to apply the program through Speedwing. You can find more information on their website but I'll put few points that I think are extremely important. All the information mentioned below can be found on the Speedwing's website.

Program Duration
There is no minimum duration of stay for Working Holiday Canada, but the maximum duration is 12 months. Each participant can only participate in the program once.

Eligibility requirements

  • Be at least 18 and not more than 35 years of age
  • Be a Singapore or Malaysia citizen. No exceptions allowed.
  • Undergo an interview before being accepted on the program
  • Not have dependants to join you on the program in Canada
  • Have minimum funds of CAD 2,500 (approximately S$3,000 / MYR 7,500)
  • Show proof of return air ticket or onward ticket leaving Canada at the end of the program.

Unfortunately, I have no idea about the next step or the entire process or the complete services that they provide. You may enquire about the program to Speedwing yourself if you are interested.

Lac Beauvert
Lac Beauvert
*Oh, how I have missed you*

Now, let's start addressing few concerns that you may have after reading the requirements. Well, at least I know I have these concerns right after reading the requirements for every Working Holiday Program that I am interested in.

Money / Funds
It is very much advisable for you to have enough money or funds. Most of the times, people start saving up few years before they actually go for a Working Holiday Program. Some are lucky for they can borrow or use their parents' money. All I can say is try your best to have enough funds but please DON'T make a personal loan, okay? Pretty please.

One of the Malaysians that I met said he actually spent about MYR 15,000 to pay for the agency's fee, flight tickets, and his first month's expenses in Canada. I'm not sure how much did he pay for the agency's fee but you can get a round trip flight ticket for as low as MYR 4,500 or even cheaper if you're lucky and you need to at least have CAD 1,300 for the first month, I think? Basically, you can cut the cost if you know how to.

Job
Most people who are here under Working Holiday Program mostly work in these industries; tourism, hospitality, retail, and food & beverage. They are not the most glamorous jobs around but they usually will pay your bill and other expenses and if you're lucky you will have some extra. After all, the mindset that you should have while you're on this program is "to explore and enjoy your time in that said country while working."


Town of Banff
Town of Banff

I recommend to all of you to start looking for a job at tourist towns. Tourist towns mean they are a lot of things for you to look forward to - amazing view, locals' discount, numerous interesting activities. Often, it will be easier to get a job at tourist towns due to high demand, provided if you come at the right time and the best thing is employers usually provide subsidized staff accommodations.


Town of Jasper from Old Fort Point
As seen from Old Fort Point, Jasper

I also highly recommend for you to look for a job at luxury hotels. The pay is usually good (relatively) and you'll get insane discounts and benefits! These are things that I really miss now that I'm working at my current hotels. Most of the times, the locations of these hotels are magnificent too. Remember Jasper and Lake Louise? Yesssss, places like that would be your backyard!

Pay
Most of the times, people who are here under Working Holiday Program will be paid a tiny bit higher than the minimum wage due to the nature of their jobs. However, it is noteworthy to mention that the pay and how far it can go is differ according to provinces and cost of living. For example, I can save at least CAD 500/month (I know it's little, please don't judge T__T) here in Banff but I'll barely make a living and I can't even save if I'm in Vancouver or Toronto with the same pay.

Farah's Happy Face
My happy face when I earned a lot and lost almost 15kg at the same time!
*obviously I do not look like this anymore*

Having said that, the pay that you will get will cover all of your initial cost if you come to a right place at a right time. In fact, you will get a whole lot more if you're working for the most part of your program. I'll let you in for a little secret. I never told anyone about this except my family. My net pay for my first summer job was a lil bit more than CAD 10,000 while my friend's was CAD 14,000. For both of us who worked in housekeeping, they were insanely a lot!

I may invite one of my friends as a guest writer to talk more and in-depth about this topic if I see a great interest about this topic. Until then, you need to do your own research and start asking around because unfortunately, this is the furthest that I can go. Hope this post will help you to kick-start the process and make you start dreaming about (actually) coming to Canada :)

Thursday, 14 December 2017

Duck Giveaway by Blog Nadiaizzaty.nia

I figured that I may not have enough time to write new blog posts or to finish off the gazillion drafts that I have for the next few weeks, so I thought why don't I join giveaways organized by my fellow bloggers? It would be way easier and I can show some support to them :)

Duck Giveaway by Blog Nadiaizzaty.nia

Rules
1. Follow Blog Nadiaizzaty.com [ LINK ]
2. Follow Instagram @nadiaizzaty.nia [ LINK ]
3. Follow Bloglovin' Nadia Izzaty [ LINK ] ( whoever have the account ) 
4.Copy the banner and write a post with the title " Duck Giveaway by Blog Nadiaizzaty.nia " ( Please backlink to her blog ).
5. Most importantly, publish the post and leave your post link on that post's comment section.

Comeback Giveaway by Raydah Alhabsyi

I figured that I may not have enough time to write new blog posts or to finish off the gazillion drafts that I have for the next few weeks, so I thought why don't I join giveaways organized by my fellow bloggers? It would be way easier and I can show some support to them :)

Comeback Giveaway by Raydah Alhabsyi

Rules
1. Follow her Blog, Google+ & Instagram. (This one is compulsory)
2. Create an entry titled "Comeback Giveaway by Raydah Alhabsyi"
3. Copy the banner and backlink to the entry.
4. Don't forget to leave your link on that entry's comment. 

Monday, 11 December 2017

Full Day Kicking Horse Snowmobile Tour By Rocky Mountain Riders

My team and I were invited to experience one of the snowmobile tours offered by Rocky Mountain Riders (RMR). I thought it would be a neat experience for me to go snowmobiling because this may be my only chance to go for this kind of tour cause you know, after all these years, winter (and its entirety) and I still do not get along well. Haha! After doing some research, I decided to sign up for a Full Day Kicking Horse Snowmobile Tour as a passenger.

Rocky Mountain Riders
Rocky Mountain Riders

So, riding as a passenger means I did not drive my own snowmobile (obviously!) and I got to enjoy the view for the whole trip! (well, not really!) Honestly, it was one of the best decisions that I ever made this year cause I don't think I will enjoy the whole experience if I decided to ride on my own. I'm pretty sure I will fail miserably and get stuck at few obstacles and corners. Worst come to worst, I may even slip out from the trail and fall down from the mountain and die! A lil bit dramatic but I can't help but to think that way during the tour and especially after the tour.

Anyway, I got picked up from my hotel around 8ish. There was a small accident happened that morning but let just leave it right there. Right after few more pick ups, we headed straight to Golden, British Columbia. It was my first time going to British Columbia so I was extremely excited. It has always been my dream to go to British Columbia at least once, though whenever I think about British Columbia, I always imagine Vancouver, Whistler, Victoria, and Tofino but I think Golden will do for now.

Full Day Kicking Horse Snowmobile Tour By Rocky Mountain Riders

It was my first time too, passing through other national parks like Yoho National Park and and Kootenay National Park. Oh god, they were mesmerizingly magnificent. I felt that the view was more superior than the view of Icefield Parkway. I wish I had pictures to show you guys how beautiful the view was but my shuttle windows were covered by ice, so no pictures! :(

We arrived at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort, Golden where RMR is based at around 10am. Then, we started to gear up to embrace this epicness that is snowmobiling. Special shout out to AJ, Alice and Jay for helping me to suit up and gear up properly. I know, what a princess eh sampai 3 orang sekali kena tolong *rolling eyes* But seriously, I was so impressed with AJ, Alice, and Jay because they were so funny, friendly, and patient when dealing with people like me. Kudos to them!

Full Day Kicking Horse Snowmobile Tour By Rocky Mountain Riders
Excuse my face! :p

I was paired up with Jay and I have to say that he was such a good driver and guide. He continually asked if everything is okay with me. He also somewhat made me feel quite safe even though he was speeding like crazy to catch up the other guys who joined this tour (those guys were such an adrenaline junkie!) or when he was trying to show off his skills at dangerous points and corners.

Full Day Kicking Horse Snowmobile Tour By Rocky Mountain Riders

As I mentioned before, I got to enjoy the view for the whole trip as I did not have to really pay attention on the trails. The view was superbly mesmerizing but too bad the weather was not on our side. I can only imagine how magical it would be if the weather is good! And too bad, I did not really get to take that many pictures because I did not have my GoPro (*side-eyeing all my sisters for breaking my GoPro!*) with me and we rarely stopped for the photo ops.

Credit: Here

The first half of the tour, before we had our lunch, was quite easy and breezy because we used RMR's private trail and public trail. The trails were quite well-groomed and maintained. There was few sections where the trails are flat so that's a happy news!

Full Day Kicking Horse Snowmobile Tour By Rocky Mountain Riders

The second half of the tour was quite demanding for my body even though I was a passenger. We sled on an unsupervised trail that RMR helps to groom and maintain. The trail was crazy because it was bumpy all the way to the top! It was also quite frightening because we gained almost 1000ft in elevation! It was so high that I almost cried when I tried to look down.

Full Day Kicking Horse Snowmobile Tour By Rocky Mountain Riders

But, no pain no gain, no? After sledding for quite some time, we arrived at the designated stop and oh, god! I was at loss of words when I first saw the view. Subhanallah. Subhanallah. Subhanallah. The surrounding view was magical. I felt so close to the mountains that it felt unreal. For someone who don't ski or snowboard, that moment might be my only chance to be and feel so close to snowy mountains. For that, I am eternally grateful.

Full Day Kicking Horse Snowmobile Tour By Rocky Mountain Riders

We were given time to do whatever we want at the top. All the guys were riding their snowmobiles like there is no tomorrow. As for me, I obviously just sat around and indulged myself with the view. Soon after that, we headed back to the base.

It was definitely one of the best 5 hours of my life this year. I got to experience something new and I got to see the breathtaking view. I also got to witness and experience one of the best customer service and hospitality service through Alice, AJ and Jay. And, I can finally say that I have been to at least one place in British Columbia. lol!

Full Day Kicking Horse Snowmobile Tour By Rocky Mountain Riders
Credit: Here

Thank you so much Rocky Mountain Riders for having me for this Full Day Kicking Horse Snowmobile I truly appreciate it! This experience is definitely one of the things that I would remember fondly for the rest of my life! :)

Saturday, 9 December 2017

Until Next Time, Sung Jin Hwan!

Hello!

Could you give Farah, The Fangirl a space to pour her heart out without judging her for feeling this way? Thank you so much! Your cooperation is much appreciated!

I came back from work this morning to an Instagram post by @sweetsorrow_company. Could not make it much from the post but I knew Sweet Sorrow posted something on their fancafe. Did not get to read original post because I am not their fancafe member but I read the Instagram comments and my heart broke into pieces when I saw people commenting about Sung Jin Hwan's departure from Sweet Sorrow.


Honestly, I felt like crying when I read about his departure from Sweet Sorow. Sweet Sorrow is one of the first Korean groups that I listen to. They hold a special place in my heart especially Sung Jin Hwan because #sungjinhwanismyfavourite, Sweet Sorrow would never be the same without Sung Jin Hwan. But, that's not the only thing. Sung Jin Hwan decided to stop promoting as a singer Sung Jin Hwan too. He will stop writing songs too. Basically, he decided to quit from the music industry for now. 

It was a bittersweet feeling to digest this news because as much as I love and I want to keep listening to Sung Jin Hwan's voice, his mental health and his happiness are far more important! It must be hard for him to appear as his bubbly self and make jokes and smile all the times when he's fighting his inner demons all this while.

Dear Sung Jin Hwan,

Thank you for being one of my most favourite voices for the past 7 years! Thank you for serenading my last few teenage years and my early 20s. My last teenage years and my early 20s would never be the same without you and your voice. Hope you will find the help that you need. Hope you will find your happiness back. Hope you will find your way back to your fans someday. #wishfulthinking

Until then, please be happy, Sung Jin Hwan!

Thursday, 7 December 2017

While You Were Sleeping (당신이 잠든 사이에) (2017)

While You Were Sleeping (당신이 잠든 사이에) was a drama that I picked up solely because of Shin Jae Ha (신재하) as I have no interest in both of the main leads; Lee Jong Suk (이종석) and Suzy (수지). I am glad that I decided to pick up this drama as I got to watch the adorable Shin Jae Ha and I discovered a new actor to fangirl of that is Jung Hae In (정해인).

Snippet of the drama (From Wikipedia)

FYI, this is not the best synopsis but I am too lazy to write my own.

Hong Joo (Suzy) lives with her mother and helps her run a pork restaurant. Hong Joo is haunted by seeing the future deaths of others in her dreams. What's worse is that she does not know when the deaths will happen, but she tries to stop her dreams from becoming reality.

Meanwhile, Jae Chan (Lee Jong Suk) is a rookie prosecutor. He meets Yoo Bum (Lee Sang Yeob) at the prosecutors’ office. Yoo Bum was Jae Chan’s private tutor when Jae Chan was in his adolescence, but an unfortunate incident caused Jae Chan to dislike him. Yoo Bum was a prosecutor, but he now works as a lawyer. He takes on any case that brings him money.

Jae Chan and his younger brother move to new house and they become neighbors with Hong Joo. One night, Jae Chan dreams that Yoo Bum drives Hong Joo's car and this leads to a chain of events including the death of Hong Joo's mother and then Hong Joo. When Jae Chan senses that his dream is about to become real, he takes extreme action to stop it. Yoo Bum becomes furious at Jae Chan, but Hong Joo hugs him and thanks him. Aftermath of the incident, Jae Chan and Hong Joo crossed paths and work together to solve other cases.

While You Were Sleeping (당신이 잠든 사이에)
Credit: Here


My thoughts
What a beautiful drama - literally. The first two episodes actually made me want to keep watching the drama because they were beautifully shot and thank god, I did! I mean I can easily drop this drama because as much as I love Shin Jae Ha, I don't think I have enough passion to sit through 16 episodes of Lee Jong Suk and Suzy. Having said that, I am actually happy and okay with the combination of Lee Jong Suk and Suzy, and Suzy's performance in the drama. They were fun and funny couple and Suzy's (or, Nam Hong Joo's actually) sassiness and confidence were so satisfying and entertaining to watch.

I personally liked the first four episodes and the last episode the most because they were the most interesting ones. I loved watching Shin Jae Ha with Kim So Hyun! They make such a cute couple! :) Wish we had more scenes of them together. As for the last episode, I loved it because it tugged at my heartstrings. I also loved the last episode for the way they unraveled Han Woo Tak's color-blindness. Boy, was it satisfying to watch! :)

I also loved when Jung Jae Chan, Nam Hong Joo, Han Woo Tak, Jung Seung Won and Nam Hong Joo's mom were in one frame. They were so fun, funny and amusing to watch. I also got the warm and fuzzy feeling, most of the times whenever they were in one frame.

While yes, I started watching this drama because of Shin Jae Ha, I finished this drama as a huge fan of Jung Hae In. Jung Hae In stole my heart from his very first scene to the last one. How can you not love him (okay, Han Woo Tak actually) with that kind of face and personality. My heart broke for him when he took a picture of his and Suzy's shadows.

It was a real pleasant to watch this drama despite all the minor details. I mean, we still got few questions left unanswered and there were some parts that were boring and predictable. But I think I was generous enough not to let those things affect my whole experience of watching this drama.

I highly recommend this drama because as I mentioned before, it is a very beautiful drama. Another plus point is it also has so many interesting and excellently portrayed characters. Give it a try! :)

Monday, 4 December 2017

Locals' Appreciation Day At Banff Gondola

Sulphur Mountain | Banff Gondola

Banff Gondola had a Locals' Appreciation Day on Sunday, November 26. On this day, locals got to enjoy free admission with donation instead of paying 50% off or the regular ticket price. So, as a cheapskate, I thought this was the perfect time for me to ride the Banff Gondola for the umpteenth time! So, instead of going to sleep right after work as I usually do, I pushed my bedtime for about 8 hours just so that I can ride the gondola. Totally screwed off my biological clock but I guess it was worth it as I wanted to see any view but Banff Avenue. lol!

Sulphur Mountain | Banff Gondola

Surprisingly, there were not many people as I was expected. Or maybe I was just too early? Anyway, there were quite a lot of changes since my last visit here. The construction is now all done. They now have a rooftop observation deck, new restaurants and an interpretive centre in one building. And as Christmas is approaching, the building was decorated with Christmas decoration. They also had a number of fun activities related to Christmas and a Santa Claus. I wish I had pictures to show what was happening, but I was too lazy to take pictures. After all, I decided to go for the mountain ranges view not for the fun Christmas activities.

Sulphur Mountain | Banff Gondola

It was not the best day to be up there at the Sulphur Mountain because it was very cloudy. All of my pictures were grayish and dull in color. However, the view was still breathtaking like the first time. Though the view was still breathtaking, I was actually not as excited as I thought I would be. Maybe because I was a bit sleepy. Or, maybe because I have been here few times. As I was not really excited as I thought I would be, I took less pictures and decided to enjoy the view with my own eyes. It was really calming to take my time and see those view that I wish I could spend more time up there.

My Filipino family and I

On my way up, I actually bumped into my Jasper's Filipino family. I was so happy to meet them by chance because obviously, I have been feeling lonely like I mentioned in my previous post. Meeting them was a real pleasant as I was not expecting that I could meet anyone that I know up at the mountain. I think I spent about half an hour together with them. Truly grateful for the short and sweet encounter.

Sulphur Mountain | Banff Gondola

All in all, it was a good day for me, mainly because of the view and my encounter with my Filipino family. It was also a good deal to ride the Banff Gondola during the Locals' Appreciation Day. I don't think I want to ride the Banff Gondola again but I think I'm going to ride it at least one more time as I have a free ticket. Guess I'll ride it again next summer when my senior comes to visit me :)

Thursday, 30 November 2017

Happy 3-Months Anniversary!

It's been three months since I became a resident of Town of Banff. I moved here after I got a job offer at one of the locally owned hotels in this town. It was not an offer that I dreamed of but the one that I needed. It came at at the perfect time after all the fiasco that happened in my life. Alhamdulillah for that! :)

Yet, I don't think I considered myself to be truly happy here. I want to be happy, I really do! I even put extra effort to be happy but I'm not quite there yet. It feels like I'm missing few key pieces but I don't know how and where do I find them.

Town of Banff
Town of Banff

For instance, Banff still does not feel like home which makes me sad. I need Banff to feel like home so that I can feel the sense of belonging. I want to belong here! I find this weird cause this is not my first time living in a national park. It did not take me this long to consider Jasper as my home before. I wonder why it is hard for Banff to hit the "home" spot in my heart?

As for job, it has been somewhat okay but challenging and draining at times. It is challenging and draining not because of the job itself but because I need to entertain different kind of people. I have met some of the kindest and lovely people but I also have met some of the shittiest people. Pardon my language but I can't help but to use that kind of word. I have been yelled at and called names by countless guests for the things that were out of my control. Like; hello, what can I do if the channel that you are watching is screening French movie instead of English movie? I work here, not at a broadcasting company, no? You can just switch the channel. OR Yes, I drive the cab. That's why I know why it is late! OR Yes, I can teleport myself to your room with the stuff that you want right after you called the desk!

My colleagues and I
Half of my colleagues and I

*Sigh* 

Sometimes, I feel that I have had enough of this job because of all these rude, jerk and inconsiderate people but thank god for my supportive managers, supervisors, colleagues, and lovely guests that I have encountered. They ease the pain in my heart a little bit. I really hope I can reach the 1-year mark in this position with as little bruises and wounds as possible.

Korean Dramas
Love both of these dramas :)

As for my social life, it is near to zero existence. The only people that I talk to and interact with are my colleagues, security guys and some of the guests. I don't have anyone that I can call friend. I don't have anyone to hang out after work. Basically, I am all alone and I have been feeling quite lonely, which is very sad when I think about it. I rarely feel lonely as I truly enjoy my own solitude but this time is different. I want at least one person to be by my side. Hello, whoever you are, I'm here waiting for you?

Korean Dramas
Some of the Korean dramas that I have decided to pick up (and drop - few of them) to compensate my non existent social life.

As I have no social life anymore, I resort to watch any Korean dramas that pique my interest. I live my life vicariously through all those different characters. Which again, I find it very sad. Anyway, I hope this explains the influx of tweets and posts about Korean dramas on this blog and my Twitter. Sorry, not sorry guys!

All in all, the past 3 months have been very bittersweet for me. I gained some, I lost some. I just hope everything that have been weighing and wearing me down for the past 3 months will go and disappear soon.

Happy 3-months anniversary, Farah! Hope you'll be more happy living in one of the most gorgeous national parks in Canada and may you find the missing pieces of your heart :)

Monday, 27 November 2017

My Songs Of November 2017

*I begin typing this post while listening to First Date by Sweet Sorrow and it brought me back to 4 months ago, when I just first arrived in Canada. Oh, those carefree days! :)*

I find it fascinating and quite funny how songs that I listened to can actually remind me of my memories and what have happened in my life. The more intense something happened in my life (good or bad; happy or sad), the more I remembered the songs that I listened at that moment. And listening to the songs again in the present time will definitely bring me back to those time.

This November was not an exception too. I think I have been feeling quite lonely without realizing it and somehow few songs that I have been listening to have stuck in my mind. I think I will remember this November and this loneliness whenever I am listening to these songs in the future.


NU'EST (뉴이스트) - ONEKIS2


Roy Kim (로이킴) - Suddenly (문득)

10cm (십센치) & Orange Caramel (오렌지 캬라멜) - Hug Song (안아줘요)


Friday, 24 November 2017

My Humble Dream

This post was written on September 28, 2015 when I just finished my summer job in Jasper National Park and just started my final year in university. A time where life was full of uncertainties and hopes and dreams. 

*************************

Now that I only have less than a year left in Canada, I start to have this humble dream. I dream to live in Canadian Rockies for at least a year so that I can experience all four seasons in Canadian Rockies.

Farah & Amanda at Banff National Park
Good times in Canadian Rockies

Will Allah grant this humble dream of mine?

2017
Alhamdullillah, I'm currently back to the Canadian Rockies albeit a lil bit late. Am planning to stay here for a year or bit more just so that I can realize this humble dream of mine :)

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Avengers Social Club (부암동 복수자들) (2017)

Avengers Social Club (부암동 복수자들) was a drama that I picked up as a filler drama when I had nothing to watch on Fridays but surprisingly, this drama turned to be one of the most awaited dramas every week for me.

Snippet of the drama (From AsianWiki)
Kim Jung-Hye (Lee Yo-Won), Hong Do-Hee (Ra Mi-Ran), Lee Mi-Sook (Myung Se-Bin) and Lee Soo-Gyum (Jun), who all have their own different reasons, carry out a revenge plan.

Kim Jung-Hye is the daughter of a family who runs a big company. She appears straightforward and arrogant, but she is actually naive and cute. Her marriage was made to benefit both families. She tries her best as a wife, but she learns that her husband has betrayed her. To get revenge, she leads the "Bok-Ja Club."

Hong Do-Hee sells fish at a traditional market and raises her two kids alone. Her husband passed away. She is bright and good natured. Her son gets involved in a violent incident at school. She joins the "Bok-Ja Club."

Lee Mi-Sook was an orphan and married. She has tried hard to have a happy family with her university professor husband, but he is violent towards her. She begins to think about her life after she meets Kim Jung-Hye and and Hong Do-Hee.

Lee Soo-Gyum joins the “Bok-Ja Club” to take revenge on his biological parents. His father is Kim Jung-Hye’s husband. Before he married Kim Jung-Hye, he had a fling with a woman who gave birth to Lee Soo-Gyum. His biological parents have neglected him since.

Avengers Social Club (부암동 복수자들) (2017)
Credit: Here
My thoughts
If only you knew how much I love this show! Aaaaaa, where and how do I even start? I think I love almost everything about this drama. I particularly love the three main leads! Okay, I like Jun too cause he's a part of BokJa Club but the other three main ladies stole my heart! *heart-shaped eyes* *finger hearts*

Avengers Social Club hit all the right spots in my heart. It was a drama that I never knew that I needed it until I watched it. It was promoted as a "revenge drama" but it was actually more than that! Revenge was only one of the plot devices but what you got was a heartwarming yet hilarious drama. I found love, laughter, sisterhood and a family created by choice.

I rooted for all the three unnies to get their revenge as if they were my blood sisters. I laughed at and with them for their antics and hilarious mishaps. I felt hurt when they were hurt. I earnestly wished for their better lives after all the sufferings that they had. Alas, I felt so happy and satisfied when they stood up for themselves and fought all the antagonists and owned their own lives! You go, unnies! :)

I highly recommend this drama for everyone! It will give you the warm and fuzzy feeling throughout the drama. It also will give you the laughter dose that you may never know that you need it.

Avenger Social Club is definitely one of the best Korean dramas that I have watched in 2017. Maybe one of the best Korean dramas that I ever watched in my life too. Yet, regretfully to say, it does not come close to Misaeng: Incomplete Life (미생 - 아직 살아 있지 못한 자) (2014) but that because Misaeng is so dear to my heart! :)

Farewell and thank you, one of my favourite shows! I guess I'll come back to you if I need a dose of heartwarming feeling and laughter in my life :)

Saturday, 18 November 2017

EID - 이드 Halal Korean Food, Itaewon (이태원)

At the middle of my trip to South Korea, I visited EID - 이드 Halal Korean Food, Itaewon (이태원) with my high school junior. My high school junior missed halal chicken so much that I felt I should belanja him halal chicken. I also missed eating anything that is not seafood! So, off we went to EID - 이드 Halal Korean Food for our dinner.

EID - 이드 Halal Korean Food, Itaewon (이태원)

EID - 이드 Halal Korean Food, Itaewon (이태원) is very small and I think we quite lucky that we got our seats cause soon after, the restaurant was filled with a group of Malaysians. The ambiance of the restaurant was okay, in fact, it felt quite homey. The service was good, nothing exceptional. From my observation, all the servers at the EID - 이드 Halal Korean Food are Malaysians. But do note, they do not take order in Malay yeah (at least in my case). They used English and Korean languages to communicate with customers.

As for the food, I ordered Bulgogi (불고기) set while my junior ordered "I-don't-remember-the-name-but-pretty-sure-it-was-something-like-braised-soy-chicken" set. They both tasted so good! I especially like the braised soy chicken to the point that I almost asked my junior to change his dinner with mine. Portion wise, both dishes looked like they came in small portions but, alhamdulillah, they were fulfilling enough. In fact, we felt like we overate.

EID - 이드 Halal Korean Food, Itaewon (이태원)

Price wise, all the dishes here were on a bit expensive side (I can't recall the exact amount that I paid but it was not THAT expensive but still quite expensive, do you get me?), but then it was not that easy to get halal Korean food. In fact, I think the dishes here were worth the money. I also read, the price here is a lil bit higher than other halal Korean restaurants, but I can't really comment on that as I did not get a chance to dine in other halal Korean restaurants.

Will I go to EID - 이드 Halal Korean Food, Itaewon (이태원) again if I have another chance?
Definitely a yes because I can't get enough of their braised soy chicken! :D

Sunday, 12 November 2017

Korean Entertainment Agency: Pledis Entertainment (플레디스 엔터테인먼트)

Pledis Entertainment (플레디스 엔터테인먼트) was the last K-pop company that I went during this trip. Initially, I did not plan to go to Pledis as I was tired and already ran out of energy but decided to change my mind as it was maybe 1 or 2 station away from where I was. Can't really remember. Haha.

Pledis might be one of the easiest K-pop companies that one can go to because the direction is easy and straightforward. I think they just moved to their current building when I was there. The building looked nice on the outside but gave an "incomplete" impression. I don't know if I make sense or not but that's how I felt.

Pledis was the only company that I spent time waiting outside of the building. I went there to see the building but got stuck waiting for the unknown for almost 3 hours. Or, was it 4 hours? It was all because I met a SEVENTEEN's Korean fan girl. 

Honestly, I was not hoping to see anyone especially SEVENTEEN's members at all (I'm a fan of SEVENTEEN if anyone curious) but the girl said that the some of the members were in the building cause she heard them practising singing. She also was so sure because it was Jeonghan's birthday and SEVENTEEN usually do V-live at their company whenever they celebrate members birthdays.

On a totally irrelevant note, I can't believe how many gifts that Jeonghan got. I was there for only few hours but the gifts kept coming and they came in various sizes and price tags. It was like a silence competition and honestly, it was actually quite scary to see how much these fans spent on idols.

So, there I was waiting and hoping that I will get to see a glimpse of SEVENTEEN. In the first 2 hours, I only saw few people that I recognized from watching Seventeen Project. I saw their CEO, dancing teacher and composer but none of the members. But lo and behold, this girl was so lucky to get a glimpse of SEVENTEEN's Hoshi & NU'EST's / Wanna One's Minhyun. Say what?!

Will talk about my first and honest impression of Hoshi and Minhyun at the end of this post. And please don't expect rainbow and unicorn as you might be disappointed. 

After seeing them, I decided to leave but I first went to a convenience store to buy banana uyu to quench my thirst. When I was on the way to subway station, I bumped into the Korean girl again and she said, as soon as I left, Woozi came to the building! It was not my luck to see him but the girl was so happy because her bias is Woozi. Good for you, girl! :)


Pledis Entertainment (플레디스 엔터테인먼트)

So, here is my first and honest impression of SEVENTEEN (세븐틴)'s Hoshi & NU'EST (뉴이스트)'s / Wanna One (워너원)'s Minhyun.

SEVENTEEN's Hoshi
Hoshi looked exactly like how he look like on TV. He was never in my handsome guys list so, there's that. Admittedly, he was quite cute, like a bunny. Size/height wise, he looked smaller than what he he look like on TV. But I guess everyone knows that TV adds few pounds. He was not that friendly as he did not smile at all and he looked quite annoyed. He ignored four of us despite the other three kept saying 안녕하세요 to him. He also avoided from making eye contacts with the other girls. Was quite turned off by his attitude but I just gave him benefits of doubt. He might not be in the mood and was tired cause he cycled to the building. Who knows?

NU'EST's / Wanna One's Minhyun
Minhyun on the other hand, was asdfghjklHonestly, I did not recognize him at all when I saw him. I figured he might be one of the NU'EST's members but I did not know his name. Can't blame myself cause the only NU'EST's song that I know is Hello. I actually felt bad afterwards for not recognizing him. Sorry, Minhyun! I felt extra bad as NU'EST had a small presence in South Korea (before they went to Produce 101 Season 2 and gained booming popularity) that none of us or other people over there seemed to recognize him and he actually walked around without his manager or staff.

Anyway, back to the topic. Minhyun was so dreamy! This came from this girl who has no idea who he is at that time. He looked so handsome and sharp and he oozed celebrity's aura. He looked super tall too. His proportion was 100%. Still can't get over how handsome he his in real life. He got brownie points for being polite and kind too. He bowed to us and greeted us eventhough all of us did not know him. He even smiled to us and asked how we were doing while being awkward himself. He also waved at us when he was leaving. He might be one of the most polite, nicest and kindest K-idols that I have ever met or seen.

Sadly, I got no picture of or with them because everything happened so fast. I did not feel much about Hoshi but I was sad that I did not think about taking picture of or with Minhyun as he walked past me few times. Now that he's getting big and famous, it will be hard to see him like that again. T___T
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