Mel's Place

Published: Wednesday December 24, 2014 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Updated: Thursday February 5, 2015 MYT 6:45:24 PM

Farewell 2014, farewell to you!

In her final column, Melinda Looi reminisces about the past year and what it meant to her.

THE end of the year has come again, but this time it brings extra poignancy as this is my last column in The Star. As someone who started out not knowing how to write, my journey of nearly 100 columns has been a fabulous experience, one that I have thoroughly enjoyed.

I guess you can say I’ve been bitten by the writer’s bug and have no intention of slowing down. In other words, this is definitely not the end of my writing odyssey. Far from it! I will continue writing for my blog and who knows what else will spring up in the writing world? 2014 has treated me super well; not only have I managed to travel to more than 26 cities in 12 countries, I also had a few nice surprises in my personal life and career, for which I am extremely grateful.

This year, I had my very first showcase on the KLCC Philharmonic stage, designing the costumes for Datuk Ramli Ibrahim’s Firebird. It gave me a huge sense of satisfaction as I’ve always loved doing costumes for theatre. Working with Ramli, in particular, is an added pleasure because of his level of professionalism and talent. He’s a fantastic artiste, a true national treasure!

We also managed to win the contract to design the official attire of Malaysia’s sports heroes. In addition to the privilege of dressing our top sporting personalities, I got to make a number of new, interesting friends from a community as totally different from the fashion industry as you can possibly get. I’m pleased to say that I got to understand a lot more about sports, too, an area I never paid much attention to before as I was never any good at it!

The project was so much fun, but more importantly it has thrown open the door to more collaborations with the Government. In fact, we’re currently being considered for another exciting project and are keeping our fingers crossed, as the selection process is very meticulous. We should hear back about this some time in 2015.

Thanks to our involvement in re-designing the national sports costumes, we were even presented an award from the International Olympic Council (IOC). Just a week ago, a special trophy came all the way from Switzerland and was presented to me at the Olympic Council of Malaysia (OCM’s) Annual Dinner.

I was completely taken by surprise, as this was totally unexpected – it was a truly wonderful year-end gift for my team and I. This international recognition means so much for all of us and certainly made the countless hours spent worth every second. What’s more, it has inspired us to work even harder to continue to make our nation proud. Thank you once again to IOC and OCM for the recognition.

2014 has been a year of making new friends and meeting up with old ones. It also brought me in contact with international celebrities, David Beckham among them. We met at the launch of his Haig Club whisky where I was incredibly lucky to be chosen as one of 12 VIPs to be presented with an autographed bottle – a beautiful deep blue – by the man himself! Of course, I was thrilled to meet Beckham in person and have to add that he came across as being really humble and friendly. A big shout of thanks to Datuk Jimmy Choo for hosting such an unforgettable event.

The launch was one of several events I attended this year, which in itself is interesting because my work schedule does not permit much time for social functions.

Discovering that I am having another baby was definitely another highlight of the year. I count myself as being truly blessed even if I was not actually planning on having another child. The fact is, our children were not planned; they have all been gifts from God. Baby number four is due in February 2015. Besides those sleepless nights, we are very much looking forward to welcoming our baby girl to the world, as are our other three kids. They can’t wait to see their new playmate!

Pregnancy has not stopped me from travelling or working as hard as usual to stay on top of my workload. Honestly, I have more energy when I’m busy; I guess that’s the workaholic in me.

In some ways, everything has worked out incredibly well. Just as I prepare to welcome and nurture a new life, I find myself saying goodbye to you. It’s been great expressing my thoughts in this column, and although I don’t know who my readers are personally, I somehow feel close to who I imagine you to be. I’d just like to end by saying you’ve been a fantastic friend, and here’s wishing you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year – for 2015 and many, many more years to come!

Goodbye and god bless.

The views expressed are entirely the writer's own.


Tags / Keywords: melinda looi, column

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