me, when i was little

I was tagged by the lovely Joy last year (I can't believe I just typed 'last year'). It has taken me a while to do this tag, so I do apologise to Joy. But it's better late than never. Since I've done so many of these tags over the past few years of blogging, I doubt that there's any mystery left about me when it comes to random facts. I'll give it my best shot, but I'm afraid I will have to cheat on some of the rules ...

: : Rules:

1. You must post these rules (okay then, done).
2. Each per­son must post 11 things about them­selves on their blog (check).
3. Answer the ques­tions the tag­ger set for you in their post, and cre­ate 11 new ques­tions for the peo­ple you tag to answer (questions answered, but I don't have the energy at the moment to create new ones).
4. You have to choose 11 peo­ple to tag and link them on the post (er, sorry, going to skip this one - I've tagged way too many people in the past).
5. Go to their page and tell them you have linked him or her (sorry again).
6. No tag backs (and again).
7. No stuff in the tag­ging sec­tion about ‘you are tagged if you are read­ing this.’ You legit­i­mately have to tag 11 people (my, we are insistent with the rules, aren't we? I'm a rebel, I say no).

: : 11 Things About Me:

1. I was born in Ramat-Gan, Israel.

2. My first name (Hila) means something like 'aura' in Hebrew, and my last name (Shachar) means 'dawn'. Our last family name was largely my grandfather's invention however, as he changed it from Wiesenstern to the more Israeli-sounding 'Shachar'.

3. I've been told I have various types of accents when I speak certain words in English. They range from American, English to oddly, Russian accents. I personally don't get it. The only time I've heard myself speak is through recorded lectures and I sound like I have a subtle Australian accent when speaking English, which makes sense.

4. It's a joke in my family that physically, I'm a cross between three women: my two grandmothers and my great-grandmother. I inherited dark eyes and hair from my Moroccan grandmother, fair European skin that burns readily in Australia from my Polish grandmother and my small body structure from my tiny, waif-like great-grandmother. That's where our similarities end however as she gave birth to 14 children, and I have no intention of doing that!

5. I used to devour Sweet Valley High and V. C. Andrews books when I was little. My brother still makes fun of me for this literary crime.

6. The first band I obsessed about was Guns n' Roses, courtesy of my brother's influence.

7. I'm deeply superstitious of writing in the last page of a notebook, and I always leave it blank.

8. I love everything about the sight, smell and taste of peaches - including their name. The word just rolls off your tongue like something sweet.

9. I am so very bad at accepting compliments, and I fear I hurt people's feelings who so graciously offer them. I respond better to (constructive) criticism, because it fires me up and doesn't make me feel like a fraud.

10. I really think I'm way too sensitive, and would prefer not to be.

11. I can devour a huge bowl of chips but eating a handful of sweets makes me feel quite sick.

: : And now for Joy's questions:

1. If you could be anyone for a day (could be fictional/historical), who would it be?
I don't really have a specific person in mind when it comes to such questions because I basically want to enter the head of many smart people and poke around in their brains for a while. I'm really curious by the process of music composition, so I suppose I'd like to be a composer for a day.

2. Field Notes or Moleskines?
Moleskines, I have many.

3. What is the last thing you ate?
Toast with butter and honey.

4. If you can be anywhere you want right now, where would it be?
In my aunt's holiday house in Brittany. Her husband inherited this house from his family and it's one of my favourite places on earth.

5. If you could go back in time and change any historical event, what would it be?
I wouldn't, I'd probably just mess everything up.

6. What is your favourite piece of clothing in your wardrobe right now?
A pair of nondescript black ballet shoes and a large black jumper, left behind by an old boyfriend. Both are well-worn and well-loved.

7. Which would you prefer if you had to pick either one, Zara or H&M?
Honestly, there's not much difference to me.

8. Morning person or night owl?
I write and think better really early in the morning, but I sometimes have bursts of creativity in the middle of the night. I'm more of a morning person, but night can be productive too.

9. What is the last thing you do before you go to bed?
Well, that depends on who happens to be in bed with me (ahem). If I'm alone, I usually read.

10. Favourite smell in the world? (No perfumes allowed)
If you get right close to them, most people smell delicious at the nape of their neck. It must be a combination of natural smell and shampoo. Mind you, this doesn't apply to smelly people on public transportation.

11. Most important lesson learnt in 2011?
Stress less. Unless it really is the end of the world, nothing is that bad.

P.S. Yes, the photo above is of mini-me. And thanks so much for responding with such kindness to my New Year 'Poem'.