Thursday, December 31, 2009

Cuti2 Melaka - Day 2

Day 2 started as early as 8 am for breakfast in the same restaurant - part of the hotel's online promotion package (free breakfast vouchers). Then it was straight to Ayer Keroh for the much-awaited (the kid, mind you) Malacca Zoo. We were there around 9.30am and therefore managed to get quite a good parking spot. But there were already tonnes of people there. I gotta own up that I do sometimes like to take a mental note of the people around me. The thing is that with the mental note, comes the comments - which rewards me with nothing that 'dosa kering'

Anyway, I cannot fathom why some would wear heels when going to the zoo - don't they know that the 'road' there is not even - that you are expected to have long walks, which might include going up and down slopes, small hill, etc. My only guess is that they are there on a date. And then there are those who carries small babies - I mean babies of a couple of months old - who will not appreciate the zoo. I can understand if they have other kids who are older, but this is those with only that one small baby! I can also understand if they decided to go to the zoo on a weekend - but definitely not on a weekend during school holidays.

For my kids, zoo = fun. Full stop. I did notice that the zoo looks unkempt though. And the animals - or the lack of them - seems strange. I mean it does not look like the area is deserted. There are a lot of parents with their kids in tow - happily walking about. But what do I know ? Probably the ticket alone cannot cover the cost of running the zoo.

Imagine walking on the longggg... bridge at the 'Safari' area, only to come across a few giraffes and zebra(towards the end of the bridge walk). Nothing else.

After the tiring half day at the zoo, we decided to explore unknown territory in search for (lunch) food. Along the way (back to the hotel), we saw a small roadside restaurant with rows of cars - including 'big cars' - in front. When you don't know - follow the crowd...he..he...our guess is that either the food is good or it's just a strategic area or simply those patrons are desperate tourist (us included).

The kids with managed to convince their dad for a lap in the pool, only to be told that the pool is closed (3pm) - as the lifeguard is having his lunch! The finally went down again to the pool an hour later. Then it was off to the Malacca River Cruise. My youngest daughter tired after an eventful day at the zoo and then a lap at the pool, requested for her milk - and dozed off a few minutes later. Once we were off the boat - she was awakened by her sister and note 'cepatnye habis naik bot'....ha..ha..ha...

We then went to the center of Malacca town - where it was super congested. There are people everywhere. By sheer luck, we managed to find a parking spot in the shopping arcade opposite the 'Flor De Lama' ship. We bought tickets for the tour of the ship - which was worth it. Then it was off to the areas around there - enjoying the bright lights of Malacca town during peak holiday time..


Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Cuti2 Melaka - Day 1

Parent's guilt in a way ensured that tourism is alive and kicking. Each school holidays, parents with their kid in tow are seen heading to all the favorite destinations - either abroad or cuti cuti Malaysia. Me included. Seeing the kids bored at home, we decided to join in jalan2 fray. We thought of Cameron, but then since this vacation is supposed to be for the kids, then Malacca seems to be the better choice - with the Zoo and Animal Safari there.

Anyway, after a round of online search, we settled for the Emperor Hotel- since most of the other hotels are quickly snapped away. We drove there early Christmas morning. Had breakfast in a very congested Bukit Merah R&R (hence the scarcity of food). Stopped at Dengkil for the Samuri sate, only to find that it is closed. Since it was not yet noon, we decided to head straight to our destination - which proved to be a mistake. Once we were near to Seremban, the congestion started - mind you , it was On the PLUS


We inched our way to Malacca town - literally inched - when at least 5 (man made) lanes merged into 1 !!! But then - knowing me - Mr Hubby had already asked to to chill up - and expect the worst (where traffic is concerned). So I was not so stressed out by that crawl. By the time we reached the hotel, it was way past 3pm. With all our tummies making music, we dreaded having to turn back to find a place for (late) lunch. Fortunately we were given RM38 complimentary F&B coupon to the hotel's restaurant - which are 5 steps away! Yeah....


The food was nothing to shout about - but we still finished every last bit. Then it was up to our 18th floor room. The room was what I (half) expected. It's and old, tired looking room - with (very) basic amenities. No Astro, no iron - but luckily there's kettle which is needed for milk for my daughter. We decided just to relax and enjoy the room (ha..ha..) before heading towards Umbai for dinner.


Thanks to GPS (plus the old-fashioned detailed study of the printed map)- we could easily locate the place. We ended up in the Medan Ikan Bakar Terapung - which is extremely well-kept, pleasing to the eyes. Reminded me of Sabak Aur in Muar. The scenery was awesome. Since it was still early, we took loads of pictures - including romantic ones with Mr Hubby. Then it was a scrumptious dinner of various seafood. A satisfying gastronomical experience indeed....

We thought of heading straight to the hotel, but then with the night still young (plus the heavy tummy), we decided to just wonder around town. We came across a recreation area - which is very near to the Bandar Hilir's River Cruise. There are a small Ferris wheel and some scary looking pirate ship for the adrenaline junkie. We opted for the small Ferris wheel, knowing that the 'Eye on Malaysia' ride is going to cost a fortune!

Thursday, December 24, 2009


I just gotta include this entry. Remember I mentioned about my favorite romance story? Having forgotten the title and the main character, I know I have to scavenge my book collections for that particular book. I can't stop smiling, once its on my hand - but a little sad, looking at its sorry state. Lucky it is hardcover, but somehow one of my kids must have gotten their hand on the books - as their artistic prowess is glaringly exhibited on the book's cover.

Back to the book - I'm not so sure whether am I surprised that the book was actually a Mills & Boon. But this is a 1950 M&B. Jane Tempest's A Match is Made. The story chronicles the trials and tribulations of Romola Chivelston. She's an 18 yrs plain looking girl, with a stunning older sister and a devoted older (married) brother. The family lives in the country with Roskimmon brothers - Dion and Garnet.

Proof that this it a 1950 publication....excerpt from the firs paragraph: "Once upon a time, there lived a king who had 2 sons. The elder was grim and mean and ugly and and no one loved him. The younger was gay and charming and handsome and won all hearts." This is the illustration that was used by Ramona to describe the brothers. Notice how 'gay' is used to denote happy and cheerful outlook.

Anyway, the story is that this girlish Ramona is infatuated with the 'gay' Garnet. Her family is in dire need of extra cash to keep their farm running. Guess who has money ? Dion, of course - the grim elder brother of the Roskimmon. He is the businessman, the one with intelligence and...compassion. But his confidence is nowhere to be found, courtesy of the lack of good looks. Over time Ramona discovered that the Garnet is not what she imagined after all, and that Dion is the caring one. To cut the story short, Ramona and Dion is destined to be together. The most romantic 'scene' is the one when Dion confesses his love to Romona....telling her that he fell in love with her, 15 years ago - when she was just 3 yrs old. At that time, Dion was 15 and was bullied by his much younger brother and friends. It was 3 yrs old Ramona who helped him to his feet....and he has been in love with her ever since.....hhmmmm....isn't that the most romantic thing ???

I am a sucker for romance - M&B type of romance....hhhmmm....

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


Since the conference ended early yesterday, I had the opportunity to be home by 5pm. While flipping channels (and after winning an argument with the kids - and convincing them that running around in the playground is better) I came across 'Emma'.

I have to admit, I am a sucker to Jane Austin type of romances. Those yester years love story seems so hopelessly romantic....hhmmm.....I guess that's what you turned into - being literally fed with Mills and Boon books - in which the heroes are so chivalrous. Coming back to Emma, I simply lurve Mr Knightley. From the beginning, I sensed that he will be the ONE - and off course it turns out to be the case! He is oh, sooo...handsome and sooo..English in his manners. Charming, I must say. He reminds me of another English gentleman, Colin Firth - as the (eventual) boyfriend of Bridget (Bridget's diary). I used to adore Hugh Grant of the 4 Weddings' fame - but the back lane (or was it back seat) scandal turned me off.

Mr hubby likes to tease me - about my preference of Hallmark channel - implying that it reflects who I am (basically older than him, lah!) Sometimes when I noticed that the series are already in their 5th or 10th mins, he will just laugh - and said that I won't miss anything. And I do have to agree with him. These English series are - most of the them, anyway - awfully slow paced. Some of the shows I love includes Doc Martin and Midsomer Murder. Even the kids know it.

One of my favorite romantic book was - oh my, I can't remember the title now ! Let me look it up first...

Monday, December 21, 2009

'Back to School' Preparation

I went out with Mr Hubby and the kids on Saturday, for the yearly 'Back to School Trip'. Looking at the (price) tags on the school uniform - I could only sigh....On one hand, you want a good quality ones - ones which can 'withstand' the kind of treatment it'll receive from its wearer - which cost and an arm and a leg! On the other hand, if you opt for the cheaper alternatives, chances are you need to buy new ones sometime in June - it's possibly torn by then!

I don't kid you - we end up forking around RM800, for school uniforms and shoes - for the 3 kids. It is actually 3 uniforms and 1 shoes for each of them. I mean we have to fork sooo...much for our 3 kids - how about those with 5 school going kids ??? And that does not include the books which cost about RM100 and school fees RM80.

So here goes : the total= rm270 + rm100 + rm80 = rm450 for each kids. No wonder parents have nightmares - come end of the year. There is that irresistible year end sale, and the back to reality - err..I mean back to school.

I have been tempted to write about economics and essentially our politics (and our beloved politicians) - how they are like living in another planet - with no inkling whatsoever with us - the 'rakyat marhaen'. This is yet another reason...I mean what with introducing another tax (yes, I am referring to the the impending GST) - which will end up burdening the poor and middle class. Looks like we have to fork even more - say 4% more for each garments that makes up the school uniform...sighhh.....

If only they are more efficient - collect the overdue taxes from the filthy rich, what about the (planned) windfall tax to IPP - let them pay their dues. Do not just dig into the those who diligently have their salary automatically deducted for the tax - only to learn that some of the money ended up with unscrupulous businessman. Imagine having to read the govt buying a rm42k desktop!

Friday, December 18, 2009

2009 Reflections

Today is Maal Hijrah - Muslim's New Year. It makes Muslim (or at least me) stop and reflect back. Counting our blessings and wondering whether have we done enough as His slave ? Have we worked hard enough to be a better person ? How do we strive to be better ? Hmmm.....

It's a holiday today - and with the rain, the weather is so soothing. It's like a blessing from Allah - from the start of the new year. We had a hectic day today. First it was the hunt for some house appliances. Seems that the faithful ol' fridge will have a partner. And being a warehouse sale, there are bound to be drama! We have already selected a display unit - wrote down the receipt and scout around for other stuff - only to be told - when we were about to pay - that the fridge has been sold to somebody! Off course Mr Hubby made as scene, since were were the first to book the fridge. How could he sell it off some body else ! After much negotiation, we opted for another model (off course the more expensive ones) - in which RM50 was cut from the original price(already cheap - since it is a display model - but with no dent and scratches).

In the afternoon, it was off to another warehouse sale. I was deeply disappointed - should I ? I mean I had anticipated it - but being me, I still was. Anyway, most of the items were tens of seasons ago (not last season). Most of the items look tired. But that does not deter me to grab a few shirts for my kids and maid. Nothing to shout about.

It's going to be a busy weekend. It's 3D Avatar with the kids tomorrow. Then there is the 'back to school' buying spree - from books, to uniforms, to shoes, etc. Then on Sunday - the much overdue lunch treat for My Hubby and kids. Opsss...and I have not tackled the preparation for our Malacca trip. We are taking the kids for a much deserved holiday - during Christmas.

Monday, December 14, 2009


Yes, it's again that time of the year again...when teams realized that they have not used up their yearly allocations for team building - and are scrambling to have one. So there goes our team - and since it is a small one, we invited a few other teams as well. And as usual, the lack of lady engineer is very noticeable in the mechanical engineering community. Anyway, there were around 28 of us gathered in Golden Sands on an early Thursday morning - ready for the Adventure.

Little did we realize it was really going to be quite an adventure. The first was the obstacle run. We have to scale up and down, jump, hang on ropes, etc. It was loads of fun. And with members that are younger and more energetic, we definitely beat the other all-guys team (the 4 ladies are all from our team). Next was the dare devil slide. We were shocked when we saw the 24 feet, 90 degrees vertical slide! Seeing the slide from far is already enough to make some decide to stay away. Goosebumps! Definitely not for the faint-hearted and those who has height phobia.

Okay...what should I do ? Do I just cheer for my team...or just do it! Before I realized it...I was already on the steps...seems like a long journey there. Once you are up there...your heart beats so loud - you wonder whether the guy next to you can hear it.'s my turn now....

As I sat the ledge of the slides....Oh my God ! Ya Allah...what was I thinking ??? It was soooo....scary. Looking down, you can't see the slide (I did mention that it is a vertical slide) - you can only see the end there where it starts to flat out. The guys are already cheering. What the heck....The instructor was telling me to move slightly outwards... but I was wearing jeans that day, and it felt very slippery. 'Just push me!'. He did - as I closed my eyes. It was such a shock. The sudden felt like you are falling from a tall building...with no control of yourself...but luckily it was over in matters of seconds. The first thing one of the guys asked was - 'so, perut you still kat atas lagi ker ? ' Yeah....he's right!

I was proud of myself. I mean I just took the challenge. Conquered my fear - for the experience. I am also proud that I am one of the 8 who finally completed the task. A few actually sat on the ledge, looked down and then turned the other way.

The other activities were not as excited as those 2 mentioned earlier. We had lunch in Bayview and then the facilitator led training. It was interactive, precise and short. I liked it. And like any other training, I took charge and ended up being the speaker for the first task....hhmmmm....

Did I mentioned that I actually went for a belly dancing workshop - a day before the teambuilding. I went there to support the committee and also out of curiosity. It was worth it. I mean yeah, it was hard, and my body actually ached all over...but it was also fun! I did not know that belly dancing can make you sweat like a ***. Try to shake you booty and make that serpent movement and you'll know what I mean. I love the instructor - superb - well at least I know she deserved her first runner up for the Asian Belly Dancing competition!

Because of the sudden movement of my ever-relexed muscles and joint during belly dancing, and add teambuilding activities to it...I was in pain...shoulder, back, name it. I grabbed my phone and made an appoinment for a couple's massage. Something that I had been delaying for sooo...long. So Sunday it was - and I did not regret it. It was rejuvanating...Need to do this more....

Sunday, December 6, 2009

(2009) Year End Sale

Well, it's that time of the year - where Malaysia is on sale - to the highest bidder, I hope. Looking at the sheer wealth accumulated by some of us by being in the office for just a couple of years...I'm sure they can afford it. I mean after sucking the country (or the tax payer's $$) dry, they surely can afford to buy us in dirt cheap prices!

Before we go on to the SALE...let me just vent my frustration on what is happening around us. A senior member of the admin use money changer to transfer RM10 mil to London...Why ? Coz using banks means that there is paper trails. for a few years and you can earn that much. That is only for cashing money via money changer...guess you must have a lot more stashed in that pillow of yours...and to think that we, the rakyat...the tax scraping our cents to put into the piggy bank! This stinks! My consolation is that I believe in will be rewarded as how you act. If not now, in the future...and worst still in the after life...

Back to the sale, I was in KL after Qurban and had the chance to window shop in KLCC. Managed to get myself a nice cocktail ring and a cute evening bag - nothing to fancy nor expensive. Cannot simply waste my bonus...he..he...

Went to Toy R Us on Sunday, for the kids b'day present. Surrounded by all those toys, they are bound to be mesmerized and wanted everything...sorry dear, mummy is just a coolie in an engineering firm...not the cash rich finance company! After much persuasion, they managed to convince us to celebrate their b'day last night itself - more than a week earlier that the actual date! Kids will be kids.... And after shopping for the kids, mummy managed to find herself a very comfortable slipper for her future shopping trips and cute moccasin for the office.

On Saturday, we successfully held a BBQ Reunion for my hubby and his (ex) team of engineers. Somebody commented that the chicken looked ugly...but are surprised of its taste. Hubby mentioned that a few actually asked for the was actually the Kelantanese ayam percik, which is not spicy at all...Food was abundant. Yours truly also prepared bihun goreng and butter rice (with raisins and cashew). It was fun..

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Event Management - Technical Symposium 2009

I am first and foremost an engineer. But this year, due to some circumstances, I was thrust with organizing one of the most prestigious event in the company. Yeah, it is a technical event...but oh, so many non technical stuff to deal with. With limited budget and limited headcount - it is soo...difficult to get volunteers - I had to oversee almost everything. Incidentally, most of my team members are junior engineers, who are not used to driving a team...not used to being empowered to make decisions....sigh.

But I made it! I mean the event was a success. At least that was the general feedback that I got. The 2 sponsors were impressed. There were a lot of sharing activities which kept the audience occupied. And on top of that - my paper was also selected for technical presentation - which itself was an honor to me! Now that the symposium is over, I make it my mission to ensure that my team is duly recognized. I will make sure that the sponsors agree for a lunch treat to the team. That will be a tough one....hmmmm......


Owh my God it really December already ????? Looks like I never managed to keep my promise to myself to keep writing. Shall I try again in 2010. Actually I should...writing should make me feel so much better...I mean after a full day at work, I need an outlet to vent out, right ?

Anyway, the reason that I am suddenly reminded of this ol' blog is that I have just received news that an old friend - back when I was an innocent sweet 17 - had just passed away. May she rest in peace. It makes me stop and think about you can in a blink of an eye you can lose it all. Are you ready to be with your Maker ? May Allah guide us all....

A lot has happened in 2009. This year - Mar 18 to be exact - mark the day when Ahmadian gathered for our first reunion - after 23 years!!! Yup, it was that longgggg.....

Thanks to the existence of Facebook, we managed to track each other and thanks to our ever hard working 'President' - the reunion was materialised. Imagine seeing your friends after 23 was exciting, fun, marvellous...basically a mixed bag of emotions...(in Bukit Indah, Ampang) There are some who remains the same - or at least you can figure them out by one look...others need a second or third look...ha..ha..ha...

That successful reunion was followed by a picnic in Kuantan, for the opportunity to meet up with those staying in Kuantan and Pekan. Another success story. This was followed by a Hari Raya Gathering...which was a hit as well...Once you can never stop...that's the good thing!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Getting Started

I have been meaning to start a blog for quite sometime already...but always there are obstacles (@ excuses). Late last year again I was touched by a blog of a long lost friend that enables me to 'see' him in a different light...

I believe that via this journey, I will discover what matters to me - what I feel strongly about - and off course what rattles me !

As the title itself suggest, this blog is nothing more than reflections and rambling...of what I see, hear and go thru everyday. And I shall start today - the last day of Jan 2009 - by reflecting what 2008 was - to me.

Career-wise, in 2008 I started doing something different. In a way I am thankful that this organization has given me the opportunity do something different - although it is challenging - it is a chance for me to grow and be out of my comfort zone. I treat this as an opportunity to gain new knowledge and learn something new. I have a lot to be thankful in 2008 - it has been wonderful - and I hope it continues in many years to go.

By end of 2008 - as we all know - the shadow of economic gloom has started to cast itself. Those working with MNCs are starting to feel the pinch. Shutdown, pay cut, no increment, temporary layoff, VSS, retrenchment..are some of the words of the day. I shudder when hearing those dreaded words that some of my fellow MNCs friends have to bear with. Alas, I do have faith that there is a silver lining in every dark cloud. We just have to trust in 'God' and he'll lead the way....amen...

End of 2008 also marked the day when I was introduced to Facebook. My younger sister were bugging me to create an account so that we can share pictures easily. Little did I know that it actually enables me to track my long lost friends - friends who I have not met since we were in secondary school. Even a teacher who taught me when I was in standard two ! And the incredible thing is that this teacher can recall me - as the brave girl who did not cry when he was tending to my bleeding fingers !

Well at that time I was raised by my grandma - together with 4 feisty uncles - therefore I am expected to tough it up! I remembered playing kites and marbles with my uncle. I also remembered being laughed at while playing sepak takraw ! But being the only girl - surrounded by 4 uncles - also meant that I was spoilt and overprotected. I got them to buy me food at the canteen and even to tie my shoes every morning...hhhmmm...those were the days...