Some time back I got memed by Jordan to write Six Weird things About Myself. Now seems as good a time as any to post it.
I can't tell my right hand from my left. Honestly. If you're giving me directions and you ask me to turn left, I have to think "Which hand do I write with? So that's the right hand. Which hand is left over? So that's the left ... and I ought to turn - Damn! missed it!"
Usually I ask passengers to say "Your side" or "My side" in the car.
I thought I was the only person in the world thus afflicted, but one day I was trying to find my way to Universiti Malaya with Raman and Lorna Tee in the car (we were going for a meeting re. the first litfest) ... and it turned out neither of them knows their left hand from their right either! (Yes, we did get there ... eventually!)
I've since learned it is a form of dyslexia: no wonder I can't spell either!
(And is maybe connected to the fact that I have Attention Deficit Disorder - at least mildly.)
I once won a sporting bronze medal and it was presented to me by a king.
It was actually, not the Olympics, or the Commonwealth Games but the teacher's bicycle race during sport's day at Malay College 1986. I'm very proud to have got bronze, even though there were only three of us in the event. The Sultan of Perak (later king of Malaysia) Azlan Shah presented the medals and we'd been practicing for days to get the bow just right.
I've eaten termites.
My students in Nigeria showed me how. First, wait till it rains and hundreds of termites are flying round your porch light. Place a bucket of water below the light and hit them down into it with a broom. Wash the insects in water until the wings fall of. Then fry them very gently for 20 minutes. There is no need to add either salt or oil as their bodies contain plenty of both. Delicious.
I've heard ghosts.
I was living in Meriden, near Coventry, in a brand new house which my father had built on a piece of land bought from the local council and adjacent to a large housing development. For several nights over the course of a week I was woken in the wee hours of the morning by the sound of dozens of children playing in the garden, laughing and screaming. (It sounded just like a school playground at recess time!) The sound gradually died away. When I got up to look the sound stopped and the garden and those of all the neighbours were completely deserted. I wasn't dreaming, I pinched myself very hard each time it happened. One night I could stand the suspense no longer and the moment I heard the voices I leapt to the window.
At that instant the sound cut off completely.
If it wasn't ghosts, I'm bonkers. (Possible.)
I have long conversations with imaginary people.
Usually authors, usually about the book I'm reading. Usually highly intellectual. (Of course.) Often out loud. Often extremely heated. I get angriest with Louis de Bernieres for making Captain Corelli disappear for such a long time. Ian McEwan is surprisingly good company. Annie Proulx intimidates me.
(Go on, certify me.)
I have an art gallery in my head
While I'm drifting off to sleep I often see the most incredibly beautiful, constantly shifting, patterns in vivid colours. It's just like having an excellent art gallery behind my eyes. I don't know if anyone else experiences this ... but it's an amazing gift.
So now that you think I am completely nuts, I pass this meme on to the following strange and interesting people:
RULES: People who are tagged should write a blog post of 6 weird things about them as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names. Don’t forget to leave a comment that says ‘you are tagged’ in their comments and tell them to read your blog.