Sunday, July 20, 2014

a good week in july

it was another new adventure into the mountains this time in the name of duty. what an adventure it was and all thanks to the new opportunities offered by the job. i call it one of the perks. i would never be able to traverse such roads if not for the job.

the journey took us more than 90 minutes from the office to reach the destination which is in one of the mountains near cameron highlands.

the vehicle we were in was a ford ranger. the road leading up to the mountain was all paved with tar, so it was not a treacherous nor difficult one. however, there was a small stretch where it was quite steep and the road had holes which used to be covered in tar. other than that, it was a smooth journey except for the distance.
you can see the tar road from this picture.

however, as with any other journey into the mountains, there are unforeseen dangers and risks. we met one not long after turning off at the main road.
fallen trunks blocking the road. we had no chain-saw with us but luckily there was enough space for the vehicle to pass under and our journey continued. of course we all had to get down the truck and cleared the other smaller branches that were strewn on the road first. going on motorbikes would be easier and take a shorter time, but i don't think my motor skill is good enough for the journey. my heart will be palpitating the whole way wondering when i would make a blunder and lose control of my bike. don't even think of the 'accident' that might happen ok.

later on our way down, we noticed the obstructing trunk had been cleared and it was done by none other than the indigenous people who live in the area.

as it was the durian season, we also saw trucks and vans along the way collecting the fruits from the indigenous villages littered along the way. since all the villagers are accessible by car because of the good road condition, cars are a common sight parked in front of attap houses owned by some indigenous families.

this is a small dam we passed. one of the reasons why the road is well-paved is because of the dam. the dam is maintained by the electrical company and they do their servicing once in a while.

the river was quite shallow on the day we went as it is the dry season now. imagine those who are on their bikes going in daily in the rain and the risks they face from fallen branches and trunks and landslide. it ain't easy teaching in the mountains. salute to these warriors who can still do their jobs with dedications and no complaints.
this is the view i got from the top where the paved tar road almost ends. the mountains opposite did not look as majestic as taken from the low lands but you know you are so much higher as you only see a little of the summits. that meant where i was standing was almost the same height as the mountains opposite. according to those who have spent their nights here, the mountains opposite would be awashed in lights as that is where cameron highlands is.

i managed to go down to the stream nearby. the bamboo bridge here is obviously built by the locals.

 tongkat ali anyone??

and here is another famous local herbal plant- misai kuching. the first time i have seen both.

the whole place was really serene and fresh and those who work here could leave all their worries behind once they are on the mountains. all debts are forgotten once here they say. hahaha. i can imagine myself reading and reading and reading here. well, i managed to finish the fault in our stars here. 

it was quite humid on the day i was there and it got quite hot in the afternoon. there is no electricity supplied here if you are wondering. there is a generator to power the electrical appliances and it is powered by diesel. so they have to ferry diesel supply up the mountains every few weeks. the nights here can be quite cold depending on the season and it can go to as low as 16 degree celcius.

we left at 2 and reached the office at 3.30. the head was spinning by the time i got off the truck as this time, we did not make any stop at all except when we stopped to collect some petai from the locals. all of us got free petai to bring home. yeah!

it was really an adventure and i can't wait to go up again.


this here is my belated birthday dinner with two gals in healy mac's in ipoh. just us girls and beer and pork.

the drinks we ordered. it has been a while since i last drunk smirnoff ice. that magners apple cider is better than somersby's as it is less sweet.

the 1.3kg organic pork knuckle with apple sauce, cabbage and potatoes. yummy!!! i wish the skin could have been crispier. the meat was a bit dry too but all in all, it ain't that bad.

pepperoni pizza. it was just so-so. i don't think i would order another pizza if i ever go to this place again. i would grab  their knuckle again and order spare ribs. the pizza could have been left a minute or two longer in the oven, then it would have been better.
the total bill came up to almost rm200. what a birthday dinner eh.

and now to randomness. detox water that many have been posting on facebook. do i believe in its detox ability? nah. i doubt it but i still infused the water in lemon slices, cucumber slices and mint leaves because i like the freshness of the water. i don't take mint at all in my diet, so i guess this is another way of me ingesting some of the goodness of mint in the water? hahaha.

this here is a lucky draw present from a dinner attended last week. actually i got a small table fan but i decided to change it since i don't need a table fan. luckily an ex-colleague got this hair dryer and without much negotiation, the fan and hair dryer changed hands. the house needs a hair dryer. see, i am a practical person. there is no point keeping the more expensive table fan in the house for years and not get to use it.

well, tata now. it has been a wonderful july so far. hope it is going to be so till the end of the month.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

it aint a bad birthday

birthday has come and gone and as one gets older, birthday gets less exciting because it is the day to day work that consumes most of the day. right??

naa......birthdays are always special no matter how old you are. not because you are adding an extra candle on the cake but because you are showered with wishes from around the world from your friends and loved ones.  and this year, i started saying my 'thank yous' on friday although my birthday was on monday. when one started posting birthday message on the wall in facebook, you are bound to see many others who follow as well, regardless whether they know it is your birthday or not.
i have definitely lost count of the thank yous i had posted but i am not complaining.

the birthday cake theme for this year seems to be ice-cream cake. never had i eaten so much ice-cream for my birthday.
the above is the only non-ice-cream cake i had- marble cheese from secret recipe.

all the other three here- all ice-cream in different flavours.
ice-cream cake from baskin robbins! the first time i am eating their ice-cream cake. this was a very special one because the boy who bought this is actually studying in kl right now. i think he got his brother and mother to go all the way to the rest area in tapah highway to get this cake and then sent it to my house in the evening. how sweet eh.

this here is a 1kg chocolate ice-cream cake. this was a really filling meal because we shared this among the eight of us. burp!

and this here revealed my age to the whole world and it was in a flavour that i would not even buy for myself- corn. yeeeer!! i just don't really like this flavour but because it was bought specially for me, it would be rude not to eat at all. i had a small piece and i was thankful to the crushed peanuts at the side which made the consumption easier to bear.

as for gifts? it is not common to receive one nowadays so i was grateful that i still got two.

two cans of beer from someone who thought they would be perfect to cool down on a hot day. it is great to have beer stocked in the fridge.

this body shop kit is from ex-colleagues. we still make it a point to buy gift for each other.  so this is one gift that will definitely come.

so turning old aint that bad again this year especially when the nephew was specially dressed in birthday gear to extend his greetings all the way from melbourne too.

there is still one dinner treat in ipoh come this tuesday. i am really looking forward to a meaty meal.
but in the meantime, the keeping fit and losing weight part still remain top priority while having fun and filling the tummy with good food.

Saturday, July 05, 2014

it is time to get older....

gosh, hate the way i am feeling now. i am so groggy, sleepy and tired. blame it all on fifa world cup........and i did not even watch it! damn!!

i was actually undecided whether to watch the quarter finals matches yesterday and in the end, i was even thinking about that unmade decision while tossing and turning the whole night. dad stayed up to watch the first one where germany played. i was actually more interested in brazil's one which was at 4a.m. gosh crazy to wake up just to watch a match.

i went to sleep before midnight as i watched man's semi-finals of wimbledon. don't tell me to go to sleep now....sort of early at 9p.m. although i have to wake up before 9 tomorrow morning. am planning to watch more tennis tonight after mom finished watching her singing competition on astro.

work has been going smoothly this week. i am so glad that things are turning out fine. so far so good. in fact, i am even proud of the way i am handling some cases. this week was the first time a 'client' actually cried in front of me. gosh, i felt so bad but she said it wasn't me. it was just pressure from work and the working place and she did not have anyone to channel her stress to. hence when i was there, she got to talk to me and it all came out. i felt slightly jittery at the beginning because i was worried that i would make the situation worse but luckily, it went quite well. i did not falter or make any stupid blunders. so what a relief. it was a sign to me that i am handling my job well and now i have a new motto- it is always about them. yup, it is not about me in this job, it is about them and their needs and what i can do to help them. i do have stubborn ones as well but those who have used my suggestions did thank me and told me how my ideas help them. keeping my fingers crossed everytime i see my clients that things will go smoothly and there are improvements in their work.

on another note, i won't be celebrating my birthday in school come monday. it will surely be a more quiet affair although the wall on facebook has started to fill with birthday wishes. gosh, 2 days in advance....i will have enough time to write thank yous for all the wishes though. hahaha.

had the first celebration on friday with an ice-cream cake already. i can always rely on these kids. mom says they are the most thoughtful ones and also another group on sunday. well, let's see tomorrow. kih kih kih.
i also had free french mani and pedi from my beautician. it was my first time doing french using gel polish and i really like it. let's see how long it can last.

and let me share this photo before i end the post:
hello kitty x tokidoki figurines from shell. i have managed to collect 6 out of the 10 designs. 4 more to go. luckily i have kids who want the extra ones that i got. it is so difficult to collect the different designs because these figurines are in black boxes. luckily i have very friendly and helpful staff from the gas station who put their magic touches and picked the boxes for me while watching fascinated as i unbox each of them after paying. am going to visit them again on monday to get the rest. that also means more junk food in the house. bad bad bad.

how am i going to lose the weight i have put on due to the idle working lifestyle nowadays? gosh, i am really unfit. i really want to workout vigorously and feel all energetic again. going for a walk is not my idea of working out but that is the only thing i can do on the road. sigh. really miss running. that is why it is necessary for me to go for that surgery if i am to have my knees working for me again. just waiting for the right time now. end of the year? to be decided then with a check at the bank balance too.