COMMANDO CHALLENGE 2014 POST-MORTEM

There are some things in life you can't believe you have done and you're thankful you've done them. 2014 for me has been full of them - cutting bitches that I've never needed anyway out of my life, saving money, and... going through a military obstacle course with my trainers, and fellow members at Ritual.

The Commando Challenge training started about two months before. This meant that for an entire eight-week period, I went to the gym four to five times a week, I went running (which I absolutely loathe), I was eating clean, and the worst of it all - I had no bottle of Nutella open for that two months. Two months Nutella detox. It was painful.

Every Saturday, we had trainings with our trainer, Shrek, who put us through numerous workouts under the hot sun, and true enough, as he said - the trainings were tougher than the actual obstacle course actually was. I don't mean to sound like an asshole, but my team breezed through it. Sure, it was hard, but the fact that our trainer pushed us, and we saw and felt what our bodies were actually capable of doing, we knew we could nail that shit.

We could do all of it - climb up shit, climbed over shit, jumped off more shit, crawled under shit. What killed us, was what we didn't train, and couldn't possibly train for, the ice plunge.

Yes - we had to jump into a pool of ice, swim under it and emerge the other side. You know how when you watch the movie Titanic and you keep yelling at Jack and Rose to swim? Yeah, that's not even possible. It's incredibly scary how your body shuts down when you're in freezing water. It was literally an out-of-body experience - I heard myself breathing out loud in a way that I've never heard myself breath.

I mean - I know cold. I've been in sub-zero temperatures skiing in Manchuria but this, submerged in ice water (the organisers were extremely diligent about filling up the pool with more ice!) was a whole different ball game all together. The pool came up all the way to my chin when I'm 1.73m tall, so you can imagine how it must have been for the teeny tinier people.

When I emerged, I was dizzy, my ears were completely deaf, and limbs were frozen and I could see condensation smoke emerging from my skin. It was probably one of the most painful, and yet incredibly adrenalin rushing experiences I have willingly put myself through. The entire challenge was.

We went into the challenge not knowing exactly what the obstacles were, and we emerged perhaps, with a new obsession with obstacle-type races. 

Spartan, next, perhaps? I just need to forget the pain of ice challenges for now. 

A WEDDING, AND A NON-FAT FACE DAY

Why is it that when you decide you should cut your hair, it decides to behave. I was pretty sure I had my mind made up last night. I got out of the shower this morning, blew dry my hair and it behaved all pretty and obedient all day today. I even had a good face day [i.e.: no fat face photos], and it was very much welcomed, since it's my friend, Trina's wedding.

It was a small ceremony, but while I can do a lot of things alone, there's something I can't and won't ever do - attend a wedding alone. Our mutual friends who were invited were sick and out of town respectively, so I was left sitting awkwardly and alone, making small talk to Trina's family and friends. Want to feel like the loneliest person in the world? Attend a wedding where you know nobody.

Nevertheless, there's nothing quite like watching a life-long union about to be made. I'm so thrilled and happy for Trina, and I wish her a lifetime of bliss.

PARTY OF THE YEAR - ZOIE'S FOURTH BIRTHDAY!

Zoie's mommy went all out this year for her birthday with kickass cake and pizza at Picotin, complimented with pony rides for the kiddos and Prosecco for the adults minding the kiddos. I arrived about two hours late, after a meeting that was unnecessarily long [I can't stand when meetings don't have agendas - I'm not there to socialise!]  with my brother and the biggest balloon I've ever bought. Let my Instagram photos do the talkin'. Look me up on Instagram via my username: fazabdulgaffa

For more Zoie-related shenanigans, look up the #stuffzoiesays hashtag on Twitter. The kid is funny!

IN LOVING MEMORY: DECKY PRATAMA PUTRA

Do not stand at my grave and weep,I am not there; I do not sleep. I am a thousand winds that blow, I am the diamond glints on snow, I am the sun on ripened grain, I am the gentle autumn rain. When you awaken in the morning’s hush I am the swift uplifting rush Of quiet birds in circling flight. I am the soft starlight at night. Do not stand at my grave and cry, I am not there; I did not die.

Early this evening, I learnt about the passing of my former styling assistant [the first I ever had], and a dear friend, Decky. He died from skin cancer, and it's only after his death that I looked through his Twitter to find his messages to God. It's hard to stomach that someone whom I was once close to, and whom I worked with, and had so much fun with is no longer here.

All we can do now is pray. You will be missed, Decky. And never forgotten.

His wise words from his Twitter account: "Life is short, Break the rules, forgive quickly, kiss slowly, love truly, laugh uncontrollably, And never regret anything that made you smile."