Little Miss Splendid

Remembrance of Things Past, Seize the Day, and In Search of Beauty and Joy

Lessons of boyfriends past April 21, 2010

“I’ve dreamt in my life dreams that have stayed with me ever after, and changed my ideas; they’ve gone through and through me, like wine through water, and altered the colour of my mind.” – Catherine Earnshaw, Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte

I once met a girl, Jane, through a common friend of ours, she studied Medical Science at university. The reason why I remembered her vividly, despite having only met her once, was because she spoke five languages fluently.

I know many people are multi-lingual, but what makes Jane so memorable was her learning ‘techniques’. She summed up how she mastered English, French, German, Japanese and Turkish in one word, and the word was ‘LOVE’.

I immediately knew what she meant when I saw a twinkle in her eyes when she said the word ‘LOVE’ – is there a stronger motivation for a girl than doing things in the name of LOVE?

Jane was an international student from Singapore, so she lived in uni college where she met many other international students. Every time she falls in love with a boy, she would want to learn everything about him and learn his native language. When I met her, she was dating a half Japanese and half Austrian guy from the UK. During the summer break, they flew to London to meet his family, and his parents were so impressed by her Japanese and German, they loved her and made Jane and her boyfriend stay for an extra week.

I thought of Jane today because during a lunch break conversation with a few female colleagues, one colleague remarked her friend lost 10kg for her boyfriend and we all commented on her silliness. Of course, my colleague’s friend is an extreme case, but it made me wonder, what are the things I have done for the guys I have liked.

Some boys come into your life, whether or not you two have dated – serious or not, some of them were mere crushes; but they leave a mark behind, long after they have exited your life.

I learnt cooking and ice-skating for a boy, I listened to all of Beatles songs for my ex-boyfriend, I learnt to appreciate Dickens, Tolstoy and Wagner for my boyfriend, and I overcame my initial fear of big dogs and now I really love huskies!

Some of the stranger things I have done include:

– watched a movie marathon of ALL Star Wars movies and Indiana Jones series in one weekend (I really enjoyed them);

– became addicted to Top Gear and Doctor Who for a boy I had a secret crush on;

– studied REALLY hard in my final year of high school so I can attend a really good university and be with a boy I had a crush on (thank you P, I am forever grateful),

– I once folded paper stars back in junior high because a friend of mine said 1000 stars grant a wish (but I lasted about 15 stars before I realised how silly it was) etc.

Above all, over the years, I have learnt to compromise, learnt to control my temper, I guess this is just a part of growing up.

Luckily for me, I never did silly things or harm myself for a boy that most likely wouldn’t last. Even though, most guys in our lives come and go, and in hindsight, they didn’t really mean that much; but it’s funny how some habits and hobbies form and stay with us. They act as a reminder of our past, the person we used to be before we met him, and the person we are now today.

I really admire how girls have a stronger degree of motivation to learn things, convert their religions, give up their family and friends, and even change themselves for love. I only hope we can all meet guys who leave with us positive skills and worthy hobbies – just remember the word ‘value’, weigh it against the price you paid for ‘love’.


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