Day #7 – “Don’t I know you from somewhere?” – A story about how human memory can be an amazing yet fickle thing!

A cool story about something that happened today!

Let me set the scene…

So I had just finished eating lunch with one of my friends (since I have an hour break between a common core tutorial I have with her and an English Peer Tutoring session) and was putting my tray away when I feel a tap on my shoulder.

The following conversation ensues (I can’t remember it word for word but this is the general gist of it).

I’ll be R, she will be G (not going to give her real name but let’s call her… Ginny because Harry Potter :P)

~Set in an HKU restaurant~

G: “Sorry this might be a bit weird but I’m sure I know you from somewhere… did you go to a CityU mooting workshop or CUHK’s summer institute or something like that during the summer?”

Side note: I didn’t even know what a “mooting” was (it’s is a mock courtroom trial) until I googled it just now. This becomes relevant later on…

R:  “You mean the previous summer? Or a few summers ago? No, I’ve never been to CityU, though I went to a CUHK medicine clinical attachment program a few years back?”

G: “No it isn’t that. Huh… you aren’t a freshman right?”

R: “Yeah, wait… what did you say your name was again?” (slightly surprised she new since most people think I’m a freshman, plus my brain is registering her as someone I know, rather than a complete stranger I have never seen before)

G: “Ginny”

R: “Okay, yeah I definitely remember your face from somewhere as well, plus that name just sounds too familiar”

G: “What faculty are you in?”

R: “Science, majoring in Ecology & Biodiversity. We are in different faculties though I think, you are studying something like Law right?”

G: “Wait, how did you know that? I don’t think I mentioned that earlier”

Note: she technically did hint toward it with “mooting” but since I didn’t know what that was at the time, I was just as surprised as she was that I “guessed” right –

R: “I don’t know, just felt it was something related to that subject… Maybe we are in the same common core class?”

G: “What do you take this year?”

R: “CCST____, about scientific revolutions and…”

G: “Nope, it’s not that… and we aren’t in the same faculty or year so it couldn’t have been a general requirement or a freshman meet up sort of thing”

R: “Yeah… huh. Because I’m really sure I’ve seen you before, you look really familiar to me”

G: “Yeah I know right? This is so weird…”

R: “Well see you around I guess, need to go tutor some people now!”

~End Scene~

So after I finish tutoring two people (went really well) and leave, my brain immediately jumps back to trying to solve this enigma.

Doubt begins to set in.

Maybe she just looks like someone else I know, that is always a possibility.

But no, that just doesn’t feel right; maybe she’s changed her glasses or hairstyle, but I’m sure I have seen her before, like over 80% positive.

Besides, I knew what faculty she was in before she told me, and her name and face are so familiar… but I just can’t place it!

At this point, I’m slowly regretting not getting her phone number in case I do actually know her and have just forgotten for some reason.

Wait… maybe…


Her number is already my contact list!

Okay, so we have established that we have met and exchanged phone numbers at some point.

We are getting somewhere with this mystery!

Anyways, after a few back and forth WhatsApp messages (where I gave her my number since she switched phones – see! Having a nearly 5-year-old Samsung Galaxy Note 2 does have it advantages :P) we just start listing things:

Secondary schools we went to, Summer programs we did, university clubs, Extra curricular, IBDP…

Everything, anything we can think of where we met a lot of people within the past few years

After a while…It finally hits us!

We were in the same St. John Ambulance First Aid Class!

Suddenly a torrent of information comes flooding back to me (it genuinely felt like something out of a movie, like where a person with amnesia gets their memories back)

Big, general things like our instructor’s name and the names of other classmates to random little things like that fake CPR dummy we made with someone’s ipad, a backpack and a pillow we made during a practice we had outside of the formal lessons.

Something about 30 MONTHS or 2.5 YEARS AGO, that lasted maybe 24 hours over 5 or so days and my brain STILL remembered subconsciously recognized that she looked familiar, even if I couldn’t consciously recall where I met her.

What is crazy about it was that our minds were both dancing around the answer the whole time.

We knew was something that:

  • Happened during the summer break
  • A few years back, when we were in secondary school
  • Vaguely related to one of our (intended at the time) university majors
  • Had an academic element to it
  • Was something that involved group work


So yeah the human brain is amazing, and Hong Kong is a pretty freaking awesome place to study since it is small enough where crazy stuff like that can happen!

That’s all for now, DFTBA!



P.S. Thinking about writing less starting tomorrow until Sunday since I have a few deadlines coming up. I’ll aim for 200 words tomorrow and make up the extra on the weekends. I’ll confirm tomorrow.


Day 6 – Am I a Hobby-Hoarder?

And because I am a renegade blogger, spoilers: contrary to Betteridge’s law of headlines / Hinchliffe’s Rule which states:

Any headline which ends in a question mark can be answered by the word “no.” The reason why journalists use that style of headline is that they know the story is probably bullshit, and don’t actually have the sources and facts to back it up, but still want to run it.[1]

The answer to the question is Yes.

But since I am also a history student, I can’t be so definitive with my answers, so the question should be re-framed as “To what extent is Rebecca of A Pondering Papaya a hobby-horder?” with the conclusion being ” To a large extent, though only for xyz period of time, with consideration to various external factors”.

Actually no, I wouldn’t be able to do that either, since its too recent for us to know the effects of what I am doing, thus not considered history until…

Sorry, I’m getting off track… where was I ?

Right, hobby hording. I got a major problem with it.

I mean it is one thing to try out things until you find one that sticks, but I seem to have a problem with starting activities and droping them off a few years later. My room is just a graveyard of past projects, littered with stuff from…

  • Sports:
    • Running – The phase I’m currently in. Besides running shoes, I’ve got my 10km bib from 2017 Standard charter marathon, the uni running team shirt and a few other things strewn around here (including my watch).
    • Swimming – Still have my swimming stuff, but haven’t gone to the pool in forever… probably should get back into in, since I made it to the level just before the swimming team and stopped…
    • Karate – Did this when I was still living in Texas, so most of the stuff is still back there. Have some photos and one of my puzzle cubes was from there and karate themed
  • Arts:
    • Music – I played flute and violin, so my room has my two flutes (one is from middle school and really beaten up, the other is the professional looking nice one) and a violin (which I share with my brother, who plays piano but has actually stuck to it for 10+ years, unlike me who keeps going off and on)
    • Book binding – A few summers ago,  I thought this would be a good use of my time. Sewed several text blocks but never got around to finishing them off with a cover and book cloths etc.
    • Crochet- Did this for IB CAS (see my CAS blog HERE for more about it). I still have the stuff and a lot of left over yarn + some stuffing , just haven’t gotten back into it for some reason.
    • Macrame / Chinese Knotting – Yes, these are technically different but they use a lot of the same techniques so I’m grouping them together. Luckily the stuff for this doesn’t take up much room (about one pencil case full) so its stuck around for a while, just that inspiration of stuff to make hasn’t struck me yet
  • Actually useful things:
    • Coding – I haven’t done this in a while, which I don’t really have an excuse for since you know, its all on the same computer I spend bing watching shows on… sigh
    • First Aid –  Need to get my certification renewed some time this year…not really a hobby though, so I’ll just leave it at that
    • Reading – So many freaking books in my room… I’ve been trying to cull some of my physical books, but like the hydra they keep bloody coming back. Perhaps a post for another day though!
    • Writing- The only hobby so far I haven’t dropped yet (fingers crossed!)
  • Everything else
    • Cubing – I’ve got five 3x3x3, one 4x4x4, one mirror cube, one megaminx. Still sticking with this hobby since its quite relaxing to just sit down and solve them. Now just need to learn OLL
    • Crosswords – Again, like the music stuff, this is a very off and on hobby, both making crosswords and solving them. Good thing is that its mostly confined to my phone and laptop, since otherwise.

So now that I am a self confessed hobby-holic, what now?

Well since this post is getting long….

I’m making this a two parter (not necessarily completing it tomorrow since I still need time to think, but sometime within the 30 days).

Also for the record, first time I have finished this post before dinner (4:10pm) whoop! Probably because it is raining for the 4th day in a row… HK weather wtf…