Oct 29, 2014

I Haven't Read As Poignant A Poem As This In Awhile-- On India

An Old Woman
by Arun Kolatkar

An old woman grabs
hold of your sleeve
and tags along.
She wants a fifty paise coin.
She says she will take you
to the horseshoe shrine.
You’ve seen it already.
She hobbles along anyway
and tightens her grip on your shirt.
She won’t let you go.
You know how old women are.
They stick to you like a burr.
You turn around and face her
with an air of finality.
You want to end the farce.
When you hear her say,
‘What else can an old woman do
on hills as wretched as these?’
You look right at the sky.
Clear through the bullet holes
she has for her eyes.
And as you look on
the cracks that begin around her eyes
spread beyond her skin.
And the hills crack.
And the temples crack.
And the sky falls
with a plateglass clatter
around the shatter proof crone
who stands alone.
And you are reduced
to so much small change
in her hand.

Oct 8, 2014


It's been such a long time since I wrote, but an amazing friend here in India and I have recently connected on the topic, and he's pushed me to get back into it. Sharing this on the only space I feel comfortable doing so. 


"Last seen today at 19:43"— how damning,
Because it is now a minute past eight p.m.
And I know you’ve read my messages;
The double-ticks gave you away, duuuude.

How did we get swept up in this irrepressible
Tidal wave of emotion, texting, endless
Hoping, waiting, coming and
Going. —I think that’s where this is

Headed...not so much torn asunder as 
Gently separated, not unlike what 
Happens when you add the best, darkly viscous 
Balsamic to a lovely clear green 

Olive oil. —It's now five past, and I'm
Hungry. What for though, seems to be 
A separate inquiry. I can barely process
The nth World Cup heartbreak I suffered last

Night. In the sunlight things always look
Different, clearer, almost--
And I went away so

You wouldn't hear a thing. 

Aug 25, 2014

Startup Life in Hyderabad

Why should you work at a startup? It's certainly not for everyone, but here are my reasons why. 
So last month, I was thrilled to see my Apprentice bestie, Ningku! We, along with Sam from the show, were also very kindly invited by the good people at Wells Fargo to conduct a panel discussion with their management leadership trainees and graduates. It was an absolute blast getting to discuss interesting issues faced by all in the workplace and with careers. 

One interesting question we got was why, after the Apprentice, all 3 of us left our jobs to join startups. And it's also a question I get asked a lot. Why choose a new company that's trying to find its feet over an established name with multiple offices and a good corporate structure? Here are some simple reasons why:

1) Change Is Constant: I enjoy change and new challenges, and in a startup environment that is a daily occurrence! From tweeting updates, to writing a video script, to reviewing contracts, to bug-testing the app on multiple phones... every single day at work is different, so make sure you're comfortable with moving parts. That's one of my favourite parts! 

2) You Matter: You're never going to be a cog in a giant machine. Startups are all about being lean and mean, so it's a good bet you'll remember everyone's names by day 1, 2 maximum. The great part about this is that you get to see the difference which you make, and that brings lots of satisfaction knowing that you can see the fruits of your own labour. Taking responsibility for tasks is really key here. 

3) Things Move Fast: don't expect a monthlong orientation, followed by HR processes, and a few team talks along the way. You're right into the thick of things and that's how it's always going to be. Agility is another hallmark of startups, and being flexible and adaptable as individuals will ensure your team and your organisation is correspondingly so. Technology doesn't wait for anyone, so be prepared to dodge bullets and live in sprint cycles. 

These are just 3 simple things that characterise the startup experience...but One thing's for sure: it's not for the faint of heart. There's no hiding behind a big desk, a mountain of work, a complicated corporate structure, or bloated teams. You are you, and your work will face scrutiny. I think the 3 of us certainly agreed during the panel that startups are exciting, and that we're each enjoying the variety of experience that we get. I hope this gives you a bit more insight into startups! 

Feb 16, 2014

Mozzie Attack

It's officially been 5 weeks in Hyderabad! (cue polite applause, occasional wolf whistle).
One of the main issues I've had to deal with here is the relentless attack of the mosquitoes. You would think that being from the tropics, mosquitoes are 
de rigueur, but NOPE-- to set the record straight, Singapore, in its typical fine form, has successfully waged a genocidal war against those bloodsuckers. Suffice to say, the same cannot be said of India. 

Which brings me to the effects of these mosquitoes: 
  • itching (obviously)
  • marks on body, particularly shins and feet
  • awkward scratching of foot using other foot in bid to stay surreptitious 
One of the products I've consistently used over the years is 3M's ULTRATHON range, which promises sweat- and water-resistant coverage for 8 hours. I'll admit I picked it because the name sounded badass, as did the bottle design.

A bit more research yielded the information that the product contains almost 35% DEET, which is the active ingredient you always need to look out for when choosing an insect repellant product. It's what actually keeps mozzies away- not all that softy citronella lemony stuff. THAT DOESN'T WORK. DEET is the formula recognised as the effective active ingredient. If you don't believe me, ask the US military. or any other decent standing army.
Since moving to India, I've discovered two other products which apparently are in common daily usage here. Odomos, an Indian brand that is literally a household name for insect repellent (in the same way that the brand Pampers is now shorthand for baby diapers...), is found on every street corner and in every pharmacy and grocery store. Cheap and good!

The second product is something the whole office and house has plugged in to every room, every office cubicle, every power socket if I had it my way: All Out. It releases the repellant liquid and all you need to do is replace the chamber containing the repellant whenever it runs out. It may just be in my mind (although I don't think so), but it's been pretty effective. 
Not sure how this ended up being a post on mosquito repellant products... but either ways, I'm bracing myself for the monsoon season. Everyone who lives here, local and expat alike, tells me I ain't seen nothing yet. Fingers crossed my feet don't become even more hobbit-y than they already are. 

Jan 7, 2014

Preparing for the Move

So I'm moving to Hyderabad in a few days... I fly off this Friday and aside from getting over the fact that I'm in denial about the move, there is just SO MUCH to do:

  • Pack up my life
  • Get medications and the like
  • Get my skincare and toiletries in order (girls will be girls...)
  • Decide which clothes to bring
  • Books, stationery, electronics...
Having tasks to complete means not having much time for reflection or contemplation-- at least, not as much as I'd like. I'm not sure if this is a good or bad thing, but a quick blog post seemed to be the best solution for this conundrum. It definitely reminds me of the therapeutic value that writing has. 

But rest assured- this is one of the few posts that will be as self-serving as this. I see the new LiT as a much less self-absorbed place; it will not be where I vent or unload. I'd really like to share the journey of my adventure, and hopefully glean new insights about life along the way. 

To be honest, I don't think Hyderabad isn't one of those places where I can think (as I usually do) "I'll just buy what I need when I get there". SO I'm trying to be a bit more careful about this particular pack-up, and get back to it right now. 

Dec 31, 2013

new year, new layout, new content, new concept

2013. I can't believe it's over. It has been an arduous, emotional, lonely year- and the best one I've had so far.

In a nutshell, I:
  • joined The Apprentice
  • was the runner-up in the same
  • did & learnt things I never thought I could or would
  • found the courage to leave my day job
  • spent time searching my soul & seeing more of the world
  • am still figuring things out
  • want to forge a new path for myself
  • am excited to get back to writing here!

So, for some background, Life In Technicolor (LiT) was born in my university days, when I wanted a platform to share news, ideas and opinions on fashion. 

Now, having gone through various life experiences and very much wanting to share those experiences, LiT has evolved accordingly to meet my goals. 

Out of my own sentimentality (because LiT in its heyday was quite a thriving space) and a slight hint of laziness, I have retained vestiges of its previous iteration:
  • old posts have not been deleted
  • a few links have remained on the sidebar (90% of the old stuff has however been deleted, in a bid to focus the content on this blog)
  • obviously, LiT will continue to be named as such, because that is how I want to continue seeing life. 
LiT is going to become a space where I talk about things much closer to my heart at present-- career choices, career in general, work, life, friends, new experiences, life abroad... Hopefully a space that will give more people a way to share in all the amazing lessons I have been allowed to experience and will continue to experience. 

I will always love fashion. It just is no longer the focus of my writing or my lifestyle. 


More to come as I evolve along with LiT. Thank you for reading over the years, I honestly can't believe people still take the time. To friends, I hope this is a great way for us to stay in touch. Or for you to keep up with what I'm doing. Haha. 

To 2014, and new things. 


Jun 3, 2013

Last Apprentice Asia Update

SO i figured I've been chatting way too much about The Apprentice Asia. Ultimately, it is a great show about business, business people and business skills. Its hardly about self-promotion although that is a necessary ancillary because that's the first way to get people to connect with the show and tune in. I daresay my friends would not be catching the show but for the fact that I told them i would be on it.

It's a difficult thing, choosing to talk about oneself constantly, and it makes me very uncomfortable. There has been a lot of pressure to discuss the show (obviously the network and everyone involved wants it to do well), and that's created alot of internal conflict for me.

I've decided that I will not be chatting about the show on the following avenues:

  • My personal facebook page: its for me to connect with my personal friends. and while I am grateful for their support, I cannot stomach them having to receive unsolicited updates about a show that I'm involved in when not all of them even tune in. strictly PERSONAL!!!
  • This blog: again, this is something I set up years ago to share news about fashion (primarily), and bits of my own writing. Besides this post and the one below introducing the fact that I'm on the show, I dont think i should cloud the original purpose of this blog. 
SO i suppose what I am saying is... there will be no discussion of The Apprentice Asia, the contestants, process, results, etc NOTHING RELATED TO THE SHOW will be posted here. I do want my life as i knew it before to be kept quite separate from the newness and excitement of the show. 

I've followed the lead of the other contestants and set up a dedicated safe place where I can discuss the show and my opinions on it. This way, only people who actually want to receive that information need receive it. 

If you happen to be here because you'd like to find out more about the show, just click on the link below. :) Thanks everyone. 

May 18, 2013

The Apprentice Asia, 22 May 2013 only on AXN

So it's been a while. And I haven't been allowed to comment on anything that's going on, until about now. Here's the Big Reveal:

I am a contestant on The Apprentice Asia, the regional franchise of the hit TV show. Pretty much the biggest thing that's ever happened to me to-date. Awesome part of it is that it is helmed by reality TV genius and creator Mark Burnett, meaning we had a ridiculously talented, award-winning, ultra professional crew working on the show!!! Same director and task producer as The Apprentice UK, same director as The Celebrity Apprentice. Brilliant camera and soundmen.

12 of us have been chosen from all around the region, and I'm pretty proud to say I'm the ONLY Singaporean that made the cut! I'm also the only (token?) lawyer in the bunch of high-flying overachievers. To be honest, for the most part I felt extremely inadequate in comparison with these young success stories, but i realized very quickly that I should instead just learn all that I can from them.

Of course, the other draw? Mr Tony Fernandes, who's our version of Trump/Lord Sugar. He's an absolute trailblazer, and a big deal in the region and beyond. The most awesome part about owing an airline is being able to plaster your TV show on a plane. I present, Exhibit A.

OK enough talk. PICTURE TIME!!! We had our Press Conference at the Hilton Hotel in KL last week, and it was brilliant seeing all the contestants again!
 group photo, all together now...a million flashbulbs went off... never thought i would live to see the day where that happens to me...

 Of course this post wouldn't be complete if I didn't share some information about the show. These trailers should do more than enough to get you interested in watching-- its OBVIOUS from the editing and production values that this is a Mark Burnett production. We are all immensely excited for the final product... and we'll all be watching along with everyone else!

YES and now this is my promo spot... me mouthing off to the camera... it'll just be 30 seconds of your life...

There's also a minor point about there being a popularity contest (which I'm completely aware I stand a near-zero chance of winning... I just don't inspire that kind of reaction in people, generally...). BUT for your information, the votes are being counted on 2 fronts:
1) the AXN website HERE, where "likes" and Facebook shares count;
2) on Twitter, where the hashtag #AAAndrea counts as a vote.

The Apprentice Asia airs across 21 countries in the region, starting WEDNESDAY 22 MAY 2013, 9.05 PM, only on AXN. (Repeats every day at various times until the following episode). 

Twitter: @leyandrea13
Instagram: @leyandrea13
Facebook: /leyandrea13
Email: leyandrea13@gmail.com

I'll be updating with more info here and there as episodes air. Peace out.

Feb 11, 2013

Detox Diary #8: Out On the Other Side


At the end of Day 4 now--officially halfway through and crossed the hump! Generally my appetite has returned (uh-oh!) and all in all I'm feeling quite good today. At least bodily I feel better-- probably means I am on the upswing now!


Day 6, and I'm feeling really quite more energetic than I'm used to-- without the aid of sugar or caffeine or huge carbo-loading.

The challenge will of course be keeping this up, but i'm not thinking about that right now. I'm just focusing on how great I feel and I suppose I'm quite the detox convert now!

Today I didn't have anything besides a 30 min massage, didn't do much except spend loads of time chilling and chatting with all the lovely new friends I've made.

Momentous occasion: I HAD MY FIRST PIECE OF FISH!!! OMG!!!
I had an oily slab of cod at lunch, and 3 delicate pink slices of tuna at dinner. Plenty of gentle protein to keep me going!