Saturday, February 22, 2014

bumping in the interior

looks like blogging weekly will be quite a routine from now on. i don't think i will have the energy and the time to do so during weekdays. although i have said that doing the job now is less hectic, but looks like things are going to change.

as the days passed, more places are visited, more people met, and that means the work is pilling up and more problems need to be solved. i can already feel a big rock growing on one of the shoulders. and having an authoritative colleague who has been nominated to be the leader of the group is not helping either. that was a so wrong choice. haiz.

this week, went on an adventurous trip to the interior...a place i have never thought i would ever get to go. it was 40 minutes on bumpy and unpaved road on a 4 wheel drive. i had lost counts of the times my head knocked the sides and top of the truck. i really wished for a helmet to protect my head.
3 rivers were crossed before we reached our destination.

the first river....with a bridge only for motorcycles.
we crossed the river of course. the bridge was made by the locals themselves.

the second river-

there was also a bridge for motorcycles.....

and the last one.....we crossed on a bridge instead of a river. can you spot a local washing her clothes there??

we passed palm-oil trees and rubber trees and of course...big ferns, fallen trunks, and jungles.
this is the most spacious area i saw...the rest was dense jungle trees.

and this- really made me hang on for dear life.
soft eroded gully made by flowing water. imagine manouvering the tyres along them and making sure they don't get into the gullies. at some parts, the narrow dirt road was just wide enough for the width of the truck. there was no room for mistake there. one minor swerve would land the truck down the slope already. oh boy.

when we finally reached the destination, and i sat down on a chair, the head was still spinning and stars were twirling. i can't imagine travelling there everyday for work. i know most who work there travel on motorbikes....but imagine the way after rain. some parts are definitely flooded and slippery. the extra allowance might not be that worthy when accidents occur.

anyway, in most of my trips, i have received warm welcome and kind hospitality from the hosts. sometimes we were feted with breakfast during break with food specially prepared for us:

and at the interior school, we got to feast on durian ;)
it is the end of the season now but durian is still available in this part. i dared not take too much as there was still the way back to think about. vomiting or belching in the truck....haha....try to imagine that.

what an experience....and it won't be the only time i am going in. i still need to make a few visits to sort things out.....gosh....won't be thinking about that till next month.

had found an afternoon to catch a movie in ipoh with a few guys.
donuts!!! how i miss them. i have controlled myself for quite a while from getting them....and that day, i rewarded myself. well, i did not really pay for them....a kid paid haha. yummy.
watched the lego movie and it was hillarious and cute. seeing all the blocks coming to life was like bring brought back childhood time. it is a movie suitable for all fans especially.

my handmade bracelets have been getting quite good responses and i am actually running out of them. have found a website where i can buy and get them send to my house....well, work will stop for this week as i wait for the bands to come.
here are some of the bracelets made this week:

i call the above simple design....and it is one of the most popular as well. they just love its simplicity and all the different colour combinations they can make. i did not fathom this to be so well received. so happy to see those smiling faces when they put them on.

ok...time for bed. it is almost 12 now. sunday is the busiest day!!! what a different day compared to others who have it as their rest day.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

all work and no play makes jack a dull boy

the first week of official work had been going smoothly so far. i had nothing to complain about at all.
they are starting to get our desks equipped with the necessary things and this document tray is one of them. the office is spacious and clean and the colleagues are fun to work with. job scope is very focused and i don't have to work like an octopus where i am involved with almost everything in the organisation. i only have to concentrate on doing my job and making sure that all my reports are up to date. that is a lot of reduction compared to my previous job. but of course, the responsibilities in this present job now is so much more and i hope i can really perform and show some results. please please let me be on the right path. this is the most daunting part and i am scared that i might steer of the parth. fingers crossed.

meanwhile, i haven't steered off any path while driving and managed to reach all the new destinations i have never visited all in the name of job.
the day started early in the morning driving to the selected destinations with a partner who is the kindest man ever.  i am so lucky to be paired with him. on good days and on accessible roads, this is what i can see along the drive.

however, not all days are clear and sunny. there are days when i have to go to really rural places and it is made worse after the rain. see that big pothole filled with muddy water?? that was a not good day and the night before it only rained a while. so imagine travelling  there after a heavy rain? i will definitely cancel the trip. lucky for me, my partner volunteered to drive as his car is higher than mine. phew! i owe him a few meals for this.

on drier days, the road will be like this...all laterite. we will pass through palm-oil plantation, guava plantation, papaya plantation, streams, etc. the sight of the majestic mountain was one to behold too. i will try to capture that next trip.

monitor lizard was also seen in the trip. i think that is the only wild animal i will be seeing.....don't think there will be wild boars here. eeekkk!!

and since the current job has made me more idle, i guess the mind has been wandering a bit.

and when dear cousin sent me an advert on speed dating to be held in publika on feb 22, i shared the blast with my girl friends and all were keen to go just for the fun of it. everyone was raring to register already but of course, more digging needed to be done on the event first. and of course, the duty fell upon me. and after some digging, we decided not go join........the reason??? only one- we don't want to be seen as cougars!!! most of those who responded to the advert on facebook were all college students and all in their twenties. no sir, this event is definitely not for us, well, unless we want to be cougars. hahaha. so no fun event in february.

well, no problem there. i can find ways to keep myself occupied.

this came in on valentine's day....well, it is a gift i bought myself using the money pooled from colleagues who wanted to get me a farewell present. haha...and i still have money left from that pool. i never thought that there would be so many chipping in to get me a present. gosh, i am really touched. i have uploaded songs on my apple shuffle and it will be put to test tomorrow when i go for my brisk walk. the red is striking eh? it is a special colour in aid of a charity supporting aids in africa.

and another thing to keep me very very occupied is this:

my rainbow loom bracelets. ahaha....all the above are special orders and i spent a few hours making them. i have more than ten bracelets to make before the weekend comes. gosh, i did not expeect such good demand for them....and quite a few from boys too. the above are all ordered by can see right from the colours? boys won't choose white. please don't say that i am making money from them. the time and effort spent is the more taxing thing.

yawn! time to call it a night. i have to get ready for tomorrow's work and clothes are still unironed. have to look meticulous and neat and strong yet approachable  haha.....can't let myself be bullied and don't want to look like an idiot. have a good week to everyone.

Saturday, February 08, 2014

breaking the bank to start new job

i had officially started clocking in at the new job and the new office on friday afternoon at 3p.m. and then i clocked out at 5p.m. hahaha two short hours......well better than 2 other newbies who did not show up at at all lah. they will only come on monday. thanks to 3 other new colleagues who went to the office 2 days in a row and they had sort of sorted out some things. made my job easier.

had some wonderful farewell celebrations by the kids and colleagues. gosh, what the kids did were really touching. singing auld lang syne and you raise me up. buying cakes and food. asking for photos with me. could tears not well up when they did all these??? i am going to miss them so much.

there is no turning back now....there is only the path in front to explore now. i am still quite confused in what is required of my role since i haven't gone for any induction course. will only follow what others who have gone do since they know more. but i of course won't keep quiet when i see things not going right.

and since i have to clock in at the office on certain days of the week.....that means a slight change in my dressing. more covered up pieces and no short skirts/dresses and sandals or sport shoes. hence, had to go shopping for clothes and shoes- both online and at the mall. hu hu hu.....wallet thinning!!!!

here are the things i got:

three sets of baju kurung...all from and all the images are taken from their website. all on sale! i won't pay retail price!!! really good bargain....and i don't even have to alter them. yippee! my size is M.

this set is from melinda looi's emel collection. still available on and it is on sale. other set from this collection is also on sale now. should have waited and not rush next time. the bottom of this set is slightly longer, so i will have to fold at the waist. won't want to cut off the beautiful prints at the bottom edge. this is the most expensive of all the baju kurungs bought online this time.....but it is also the most beautiful and most luxurious.

next, shopping at station 18 in ipoh after watching a locally produced movie 'the journey'. a very touching movie and quite hillarious. a wonderful piece of work by the director. a must watch this chinese new year!

so the things i got for the office are:

black boring!!!! have to rebuild my shoe collection again. i think this is the third time i have done so. first time was when i had lots of heels and then had to chuck them all away when i was dianosed with plantar faciitis. i went to buy all low low heeled shoes and sandals. now, i have to push all my sandals aside and get all properly covered pumps. will have to organise my shoe racks into 2 sides- can wear to office and cannot wear to office. how fun.

next- black blazers.....and i managed to find 3 of different lengths, colours and materials. geng ah!
this is mid-length.

this is the short one and dark grey in colour.

opps....not a blazer but a shirt...definitely can wear to work this one.

this is the long blazer.....half price from the original one and my favourite because of its material. its from mng in their best buy corner.

so i guess my new wardrobe is quite complete already at the moment. the only thing missing now is more batik pieces! so expensive!!! wait for next pay-day first.

i am ready to start. i have a lot of encouragement and support from the kids, present and past and from colleagues and friends....i am really touched.  that means i have lots of shoulders to cry one when i am lost and in despair. hahaha. be positive!!! and change more lives!!!!

Saturday, February 01, 2014

a quiet entrance into the year of the horse

 it's the second day of chinese new year and it has been all right so far. well, nothing out of the ordinary....similar like last year when we also did not celebrate the day with all the normal festive stuff.

it was a solemn affair for the indian neighbour 2 days ago, on the eve of cny when there was a death in the family. before the death was confirmed by another neighbour, all the signs were there showing there was a funeral going to take place from the obvious signs. and all the signs that i observed, reminded me of the poem by emily dickinson- there's a death in the opposite house.

There's been a death in the opposite house 
As lately as today.
I know it by the numb look
Such houses have alway.
The neighbours rustle in and out,
The doctor drives away.
A window opens like a pod,
Abrupt, mechanically;
Somebody flings a mattress out, -
The children hurry by; They wonder if It died on that, -
I used to when a boy.
The minister goes stiffly in
As if the house were his,
And he owned all the mourners now,
And little boys besides;
And then the milliner, and the man
Of the appalling trade,
 To take the measure of the house.
There'll be that dark parade
Of tassels and of coaches soon;
It's easy as a sign, -
The intuition of the news
In just a country town.

the indian neighbour had a white canopy in front of the house and friends and relatives started arriving at noon in normal clothes and not any wedding fineries. there are only 2 things to associate with when there is a canopy outside a house - wedding or funeral. the funeral was quite a simple affair but it was considered grand by indian standard as they also had musical instruments playing when conducting the last rites before the body was being sent for cremation. i wasn't spying at my neighbour but i could hear all that was happening. see, death could just happen in the midst of all celebrations. the neighbour was only in his 60s and he died of asthma attack. how fragile life is.

our cny reunion dinner was only a simple affair as usual with all food home-cooked.

these were all the dishes we had and i did not even have any rice. burp!
we spent quite a lot of time in front of the tv and computer this year. my brother and i went out with friends but i am not keen to go house visiting this year. we are still in 'mourning' period as grandpa's death happened less than 100 days ago and it is not apt to go to people's house. there are some who do not believe in all this kind of thing and have insisted that i just go, it was all right. for others, i try to avoid as a sign of respect.

hence, i do have quite a lot of time in hand to do my stuff. am thinking of finishing my book, but all the colourful bands attracted me instead and i had finished making bracelets using one whole packet of bands that i got someone to bring back fro australia. here are the results:

which is your favourite?? i am thinking of starting the second packet now. haha......the kids will have quite a lot of choices to choose from after cny. it is satisfactory to see all the happy faces and to get all the compliments when i show them my collection.

well, my nap comes first before i start the second packet. it is late night every day and waking up at around 9 in the morning being jolted awake by all the sounds of exploding crackers.

spending time with little callum is important too since he will be going back in a few days' time. awww.....we are so going to miss him.

just look at al his cute expressions. he loves playing in the play ground opposite and going for a ride on dad's motorbike.
and the serious expression in the second photo, sitting on my lap watching youtube children clips.

wishing everyone a good year of the horse.

there is a career change for me and i hope it is going to be a good one. i am reporting at the office on monday again to get my official briefing and to get my staff tag made so i can enter the office with a blip of the card. fingers crossed for the year of the horse.