few things in the world center me, or help me see the world better, the way writing does. recounting experiences, describing moments, opening up thoughts in the most befitting of adjectives and adverbs bequeath upon those occasions an added texture, extra clarity, a bulls eye of an encounter. and to come across old words and be transported back to those same sentiments is almost like time travel – being able to see faces of loved ones past and touch upon forgotten conversations on forgotten sidewalks.

doing this 7 day writing challenge with my friend jason has awoken something deep inside me. i’d stopped writing for a very long time upon developing a crinkly paranoia and a sudden desire to protect my innermost thoughts. over time, however, i found that this has turned me into a grey, brittle ghost with no memories. an intensely private, amnesiac, constructed, grey, brittle, quiet, ghost. many wonderful things have happened over the years but i can’t seem to recall any of them particularly well – the shadows, the outlines, the details. and so saying – fuck it, it’s time to feel again – was a lot easier than i thought it would be, and much more edifying than i could imagine. this is our fourth day and our fourth topic, and i am already four days freer than i have ever been. thank you, jason, for layaning me – i am eternally grateful for that scrabulous game. thank you, blog, for still being here – albeit not mobile optimised and a decade outdated.

so what has been going on in my life since? it’s been about 14 years since the peak of pinkpaudom when i used to get paid for writing and had no shame prancing around in ladybug costumes and supermarket trolleys. i graduated college in one piece and am still somewhat healing from the experience. i miss new york tremendously but not as much as i missed malaysia when i was there. i work now in the company of my dreams with the best colleagues and team one could ask for. martian and kafka are each married now to wonderful people and they are doing very well – we are still friends and catch up occasionally. martian just reminded me recently of a bookshelf we used to have and wished he could have given it to a quaintly.net reader who said how much she liked it!

as for me, i am now dating someone who – believe it or not – first got in touch with me through my blog. yes, it is entirely possible to fall in love with someone who first only knew me as pinkpau and would sneakily read my blog in his college computer lab. my mother calls him cheerful face, which is really quite funny because he’s not really all that cheerful. the first name she gave him was pure face, which is also funny, because he really is quite pure and innocent :D ice cream, coffee, books, movies, long conversations are all still things i love. i don’t take as many photos as i used to though, and am barely on social media. the only blogger i still see often these days is suet li, who has just given birth to the most beautiful and perfect baby. it’s hard to believe i’ve known her since we were both 17, and even more unbelievable that she would end up marrying someone i used to have online debates with. on some lucky days i bump into or cross paths with some bloggers – suanie and kyspeaks while out and about, once kimberlycun, and sometimes fourfeetnine and boss stewie. tim 2, the “tech guy” from nuffnang, who i used to talk to about ad fill rates is now one of my best friends and closest confidantes. i wonder if nic chay remembers that i still owe him an advertorial. kenny sia’s second child just turned a year old. everyone is so grown up and settled now, moving along the vectors in life that they’ve carved out for themselves. i look back on old blogging days with so much fondness, and every day i am thankful for all the people it brought into my life.

and so with this writing challenge, i’m learning to discard mistrust and peel back layers of myself that had built up and hardened over time. i am reminding myself that it’s okay to feel and it’s okay to be vulnerable. feedback is good, dialogue is good, inspecting oneself is good. it’s seven days of sheer immersion into what i’ve been avoiding for so long, and hopefully this helps me become a 4/10.



glad you’re back and finding yourself :)

adelyn – thank you ^^

Holyballs so thrilled to be mentioned 😂 pls don’t stop writing.

You can be like an orange! Seems hard to peel but when you get your fingers into it, the peel unwraps with a hallelujah and juice comes squirting out with lots of vitamin c :)


i come back to this space of yours from time to time. like many others, i’ve been moved by your writing many times over. at a particularly dull and bleak point while growing up, you and the other bloggers gave me a glimpse of the sort of possibilities that life could take through your stories and i was able to stay excited about what could be in store. i’ve thought deeper about my relationship to malaysia, about writing, and our responsibility to this world as a result, and am eternally grateful and wishing you well always! so glad to read this and hope to continue seeing you around virtually :’)

artificially verbose

I wouldn’t score you. Math can’t quantify quaintly :)


i can’t tell you how glad i am that you have started writing again and even glad-er (i know that there’s no such word but sometimes the only space that you can be silly in your life is with words) that you remember how much it meant and means to you. i am one of your silent readers, following you faithfully and quietly over the years, for no other reason than being in love with your words, your writing, your passion, your candour and your vulnerability. i followed you as you grew up, traded some of your innocence with some wariness (which was inevitable), exchanged some fervency for stability and along the way grew up to be a beautiful woman, who is still very eloquent. i do not know you, and i do not claim to know you from just your posts but i thank you for bringing me such beautiful words and writings, and for opening up and sharing your stories. when you feel and write, you remind us to feel as well, and not just exist. when you thaw, we melt too. hoping a part of you will always stay quaintly.

keep on writing after the challenge! I missed reading this blog, and a whole bunch of others I discovered during the blogging heydays. it’s nice to see a familiar face active again. it’s refreshing to see a blog that’s still about writing instead of just sponsored posts and editorials. haha. good to know you’re doing well, take care pinkpau!


Thank you for writing again :) you would not know how surprised and happy I was when I saw new entries from you. Your writing and words always touched me. I would come to this page from time to time, and could not help thinking how have you been when there was no update. Good to know what you are doing well there. 祝福妳,愿妳一切安好。

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My best friend just told me that you had new posts up from 2020, and my heart did a happy dance. Your writings used to be a window to the parts of the world, of life, that are inaccessible to me, something that reads like a YA novel, that sounds too glamorous to be possible. I loved seeing the world through your words. But you also feel like a friend with whom I’m bertepuk sebelah tangan with, your writings about your sadness and other emotions make you a real person, and not just the heroine of a YA novel. I empathise with those feelings, and I’m very grateful you choose to share them with us readers.

Kenny Sia, Suanie, KYSpeaks, wow. I have not thought about those names in years. I barely remember them now, and yet to think I spent so much time following their blogs back then too, especially Kenny. Also, it’s really nice to know Martian and Kafka are well, even though I’ve never met them before.

Be well, take care Pinkpau.

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