MINIATURE WRITING CHALLENGE #60

(Tuesday 13th September – Monday 19th September)

evolution-of-gender

We walk around with labels based on our roles, occupations, beliefs, race…etc. But before acquiring most of these labels or becoming aware of their effect on our lives, there’s one that we are best acquainted with from birth: Gender. This week’s challenge I’d like you to write a story or poem twice, once from a male perspective and then again from a female perspective.

Challenge Rules 

A Special Birthday Gift for Someone Special – Caricatures on Stone.

Shafali's Caricatures, Portraits, and Cartoons

On his Birthday, I struggled to come up with the idea for a birthday gift. I started by listing the traditional gifting stuff.

  • DeO? Implies that he has BO, which he doesn’t; and he already has some sort of crazy musky spray that makes me wonder why men first bathe then spray themselves with something that makes them smell all sweaty.
  • Wallet? He’s got one already, and accept it or not, an empty gift wallet can stress a guy out, making his think how he can fill it up. As a Birthday gift, it doesn’t click.
  • Belt? So what might I be implying? Cinch it and tuck it in? It could’ve come in handy a couple of a years ago when he had kick-started his midriff expansion project, but he had quickly dropped it, and he is now fit and smart.
    Honestly, I tried coming up with something that would…

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7 Tips for Travel to Bali

Bali tips

  1. Haggling: whenever an official price tag isn’t available on a product, you can guarantee that you will need to haggle your way to a better price. The Balinese over-price all their products and services, so its best to renegotiate to get the best price. PS: it can be rather tedious.
  2. Transportation: unless you know how to ride a motorcycle, cars are the only practical way of navigating through Bali. PS: the streets are narrow and get very crowded especially in the afternoon.
  3. People: the Balinese people are friendly, kind and helpful. They greet visitors with a smile, especially when providing a service. The majority are deeply religious Hindus, very few Muslims, Christians and people of other religions can be found.
  4. Language: while knowing English is sufficient to communicate in Bali, don’t expect the locals to understand a large portion of what you’re saying. Use basic sentence structure and the simplest words for the best results. Ex: too much money, instead of expensive. Understanding their pronunciation of the English language is another challenge all together,  for there are several letters that either don’t exist in Indonesian or are simply mispronounced. Ex: Lun means Lunch, Epy means Every.
  5. Weather: I visited Bali in August, knowing that is during the dry season but expecting severe humidity. While the weather is humid and rather warm, it isn’t intolerable. There is a light breeze in the morning and at night, but sunnier during the day. Bearing in mind that I come from a particularly hot country, so I’m more adapted to warmer climates.
  6. Prices: food, clothes and souvenirs are cheap, especially when you talk your way to a better price. Tours, on the other hand, are not. Depending on the length of the tour, prices start from $40 – $100+. This price doesn’t include entrance tickets, food or some activities, it generally only covers transportation i.e. a driver and an air-conditioned vehicle.
  7. Insects: I was advised to pack bug repellent, since tropical areas like Bali are known to be rampant with insects, especially mosquitoes. However I haven’t needed to use it once. The country is very clean, and I only encountered a few mosquitoes in the coffee plantation.