NOT content to be a miss, Anna Lin is aiming to be a missus. Not just any missus, mind you but Mrs Malaysia.
In 1990, Anna won the Miss Malaysia/Universe beauty pageant when she was just 20 years old, and represented our country at the finals held in Los Angeles. Today, 14 years down the road, Anna who is now in her 30s is looking at another beauty pageant – because she can.
“Just because you’re older and married with children doesn’t mean you have to give up looking good or taking care of your health. I make a point to exercise daily and am quite careful with my diet. While I wouldn’t say I am a health fanatic, I do avoid fatty foods and eat things in moderation,” says Anna, who recently opened a cafe in Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur.
Mother to 22-month-old twins Dominic and Dorothea, Anna still makes it a point to swim 30 laps and work out at least an hour at the gym every day. She also does yoga and ballet, and observes a careful skincare regimen.
“If I’m chosen to represent Malaysia at the finals in Las Vegas, I will be looking to meeting the ambassadors of other countries and share experiences with them. I hope to see how different women cope with married life in their own countries. It’s really an experience that money cannot buy,” says Anna.
The first time around, Ipoh-born Anna admits she was rather confident of winning then as she had the right qualities. At that time, she was just fresh out of school. Instead of burying herself in a ton of books in college, she opted to be a flight stewardess with Malaysia Airlines and see the world. She had been flying with MAS for three years when she won the title. At the same pageant, Anna also won two other titles, Miss Body Beautiful and Miss Photogenic.
In 1991, Anna married businessman Datuk Jeffrey Lim. In the last decade or so, she has kept herself busy with a number of projects. Initially, she enrolled herself at Stamford College in Petaling Jaya for a secretarial course. Not contented with that, she took up a degree in business at the London School of Economics. However, her choice of career later in life took a slightly different turn as she chose to become a remisier with a securities firm.
During the downturn of the 1990s, she took a break from figures and went for an interior designing course at the Inchbald School of Interior Design in Chelsea, Britain. Then she started a company called PW Design in London dealing with refurbishment and decoration with an English partner.
Evidently, she has her hands full dabbling in so many ventures at the same time. No wonder she opted to settle down and give in to her maternal instincts only after 12 years of marriage. She has since stopped working as a remisier, and will be concentrating on her cafe and her children.
“I was too busy working and jetsetting around earlier on. When I made the decision to finally have children however, the sense of responsibility came naturally. I enjoy motherhood and spending quality time with my children. It may seem like I’m juggling a lot, but it’s all about time management.
“I started Capri Cafe because I wanted to do something creative with food. The name is inspired by Capri, south of Italy, my favourite holiday destination. The food at the cafe is a mixture of recipes handed down by my mother, and spaghetti dishes taught to me by an Italian chef.
“I guess if you’re happy inside, it would also be reflected outside. At this stage of my life, I thought it would be fun and interesting to try out for the beauty pageant ... again. My husband is very supportive and I’m hoping for the best,” Anna concluded.
The Mrs Malaysia 2004 pageant will be held at the Crown Princess Hotel in Kuala Lumpur this Wednesday. The reigning Mrs Malaysia, Anita Phang, wife of national badminton women’s doubles coach Cheah Soon Kit, will crown the 2004 winner.