25 January, 2008

New Beginnings

Exams just ended. I have applied to some summer programs and opportunities, one of which may provide funding for a travel painting portfolio and enable me to spend some part of the summer in Paris and Delhi. Angela, Diana and I have decided to join Terrace (eating-) Club... for now at least, because the deadline for applying is near. Then of course there is the application to become RCA., about which I will find out over intercession.

Intercession break will find me in Washington D.C on an SVC break trip where I will be working with 16 other Princetonians at YSOP. And then... the beginning of the new semester, with exciting courses and my new position as a board member of SVC, the largest student run organization on campus.

20 January, 2008

Revisiting Moulin Rouge

The show must go on!
Outside the dawn is breaking
On the stage that holds our final destiny.
The show must go on!
Inside my heart is breaking
But my smile stays on,
The show must go on...

What a perfectly romantic movie: as Oscar Wilde would have said, real life can only try to achieve the perfection of such art.

15 January, 2008

Angela Bardes

is best friend, confidante, accomplice at Princeton. She applied to be a Residential College Adviser and I wrote a recommendation for her:

I have known Angela since the first day of freshman year. We are good friends and I am writing this to highlight Angela’s qualities that will make her an ideal Residential College Adviser.

Angela has a great sense of humor. Cheerful and positive, she immediately wins people over and brightens up their day. Within moments she gets a conversation going with complete strangers, and has them laughing. This ability to form personal connections distinguishes her. At the same time she is very careful not to hurt or alienate anyone – she holds a genuine concern for her friends and acquaintances. This respect and appreciation makes her a good team player.

Angela is a good listener, and is kind and understanding, but also conscientious and direct. She will remember people’s names, their concerns, dreams, hopes and ambitions. She is that selfless Princeton student who takes the time out to talk at length with friends who need her. For instance, when her roommate faced health concerns in freshman year, Angela remained devoted and committed to see her through that rough time. Still Angela’s relationship with friends does not impede her good judgment; she is not someone who will be swayed by peer pressure. When it comes to alcohol she stands out as responsible and aware. In fact, late at night on the Prospect Avenue, she will be the one to remind people of boundaries they should not cross, and help them set right their priorities. In situations of conflict, she focuses on the concern at stake, without personally offending anyone. This makes her an ideal mediator in such a situation, or when it comes to seeing that university ideals are upheld by all.

Angela is great at managing time; I have never seen her staying up late to finish homework or to complete readings. Her awareness for university events, dates, deadlines, courses, professors, and resources is extraordinary. How to apply for a Creative Writing course, how to satisfy the ST requirement, how to get on the Daily Princetonian team, what the deadlines are… she has it all at her fingertips. Many times she has been the one to help me clarify my goals and make informed choices at Princeton. For instance when I was deciding whether or no to study abroad she was there to discuss the pros and cons in a very impartial way, and helped me make the right decision. As an RCA she would be a great resource to help focus and put things in perspective, when her advisees are bombarded with information about all the amazing things that Princeton has to offer.

Angela is open to diverse points of view and backgrounds. She makes a real effort to learn about other cultures, to support and attend events focused on marginalized groups, and to play her role in creating the brilliantly diverse community that Princeton is. Conversely she has long been the liaison between me and American norms and culture – ever there to tell me that “Sick!” is a complement and that the answer to “what’s up” is “what’s up.” [part missing] She is modest and caring; someone who I know would go out of her way to meet, and go beyond, all the expectations of her as an RCA!


I live and breathe here, but it seems my heart lies there. I miss the people, the scents, the noise, the life, the adventure, the buzz... of the city that Karachi is - I miss home.

01 January, 2008

Another hour, another day... we move into a new year.