Thursday, 28 December 2006

Just A Short Note

Goodness, how long has it been since my last visit here? Look at the dusty floor! Look at the all the dirty stains on the curtains! Oh dear, there seems to be a string of cobwebs hanging over the doorway! Can you believe that somebody even had the nerve to walk around in mud covered boots?!

(Oh dear. Re-reading that first paragraph, I see that I rashly allowed myself to be carried away by the occasion and now I have already used up my entire stock of exclamation marks for 2006. Oh, folly. Now what will I do when the new year celebration comes round? I may have to pop over to the offices of the nearest glossy women's magazine and borrow some of their exclamation marks. They seem to have an inexhaustible supply.)

This calls for some major spring cleaning, and sharpish.


"God grant us," said Robert Burns "the strength to see ourselves as others see us". Well, he didn't really use those precise words, but they certainly were to that effect. It was a well acknowledged fact that Robert Burns recited his poems in a thick Scottish brogue, so it was frequently hard to really make out what he was trying to say.

On the whole, I do agree that it would be a nice change to see ourselves as others see us, but perhaps not all of the time. That would be too depressing. I would never be able to go out in public again (Of course, I rarely do go out in public nowadays, but it would still be depressing). If ever given that I am to see myself as others do, then I hope that it happens in a short, quick burst some time when I am in the kitchen - or the bathroom - alone, far away from civilisation so that I may cope with the mortification and lick my wounds in peace and private. I would not, for instance, wish for it to happen in front of a camera crew, a presenter with a sharp tongue and a vast viewing audience.

I suppose this is where the golden adage "Ignorance is bliss" is most relevant.

Friday, 24 November 2006

An Uncommon Dialogue

Sometimes I feel so shallow in the company of female colleagues. Really, I do. I acknowledge that women - God bless their fickle charm - are one step ahead of men. But the experience I had a few nights' back left me feeling stumped, confounded and shallow, of course.

"Every woman is a goddess", an acquaintance typed out to me in Yahoo! Messenger the other day. I imagine had it been that we were facing each other in a real life conversation, she'd have given me the haughty look that goddesses have. At the back of my mind, however, I think it might have resembled more of the haughty look that llamas have, but I let it pass.

"But if every woman is a goddess," I typed out slowly so that I could understand, "then what exactly does it mean to be a goddess? Doesn't it just mean being like every other woman? Surely the word 'goddess' then has no special meaning? If every woman is a goddess, why not just go on calling yourselves women?"

"You are applying masculine thought proccesses to a phenomenal experience" said the goddess. I didn't know how phenomenal I was finding the experience, but I plugged on ahead nevertheless.

"So surely, there must be room for improvement in this world of goddessness?" I persisted, feeling a headache coming on. "Are there different levels of goddess? Like, are there normal goddesses, and then someone like you, who is an advanced goddess?"

I imagine she would have given a little toss of her head whilst typing out "Clearly, you do not understand non-rational wisdom".

Now that is the type of person with whom you do not want to have a conversation.
If Neale Donald Walsch had written Conversations with A Goddess, he would have probably sold about four copies (and the movie copyrights would have probably ended up with Prof A. Razak Mohaideen).

Now do you understand why I feel so shallow when I'm around girls?

Tuesday, 14 November 2006

Of Jocks And Nerds

I have been feeling quite uneasy for past two weeks or so, and I don't think that the exams have anything to do with it. Well, the exams might have something to do with it, but for the most part, I daresay that my feelings of queasiness stems from something much, much darker. I constantly find myself waking up in the middle of the night (not due to frequency, mind you) only to discover my palms sweating and my heart beating ever-slightly-a-bit-more-rapid than usual.

The reason behind my state of near paranoia is this -

For those who don't know about it yet, Canis Canem Edit (or, Bully, as it is known in Northern America) is about a 15 year old lad by the name of Jimmy Hopkins and his (mis)adventures in a new boarding school i.e. Bullworth Academy. The game follows Jimmy as he juggles between studies, friends, social companions (read: girls), factions in the school (the nerds, jocks, preppies, greasers) and of course, bullies - all on a daily basis.

Everybody, meet Jimmy Hopkins

Now, you might be asking "Why the big fuss over a game?" The reason, dear readers, is because this particular game somewhat brings back memories of my past. Memories which are not so pleasant, at best.

I am ashamed to admit it, but during my growing up years, I used to be the target of bullies. I don't know why, but bigger and nastier boys always saw it fit - and entertaining, I suspect - to humiliate me in public. Must be because of my timid and docile nature back then.

Fortunately, I didn't have to go through this.

Though I can't really say that the experience scarred me for life, it most certainly left a bitter taste lingering in my mouth. Something like eating a bitter gourd, I suppose. Nobody wants to have to go through the same experience twice, especially eating a bitter gourd.

Faces which are just asking for it. I think I most resemble the one in the middle - minus the goofy looking glasses.

Looking back, I wish I had the courage to stand up to those bullies. I wish I could have looked at them in the eye and tell them to stop disturbing me. It would have given me some self confidence and a sense of achievement (something which I sorely need, with the Royal Debate around the corner). But never mind. That's all in the past, and now, I'm content enough with ignoring those who I don't like.'d be nice to throw back a few punches for shows. Just kidding.

Giving 'im the ol' one-two

p.s. I do not, in any way, suggest using violence as a way to get back at those bullies with brains about the size of walnuts. You wouldn't be any better than them if you resorted to that method. Instead, do all your punching in the game. At least nobody gets hurt; save the nerds and jocks, perhaps.

Sunday, 12 November 2006

Where I'm Heading To

Yes, I see a very bright future in the two weeks of coming holidays.

Friday, 27 October 2006

This Is How It's Done

This is the Wan Hamidah clan.

So mynn, this is how Raya looks like back here in Malaysia.; at least for the descendents of Wan Hamidah in Kelantan. In my opinion, this was one of the merrier Rayas as almost everybody was back home for the celebration - save for one of my cousins who's in Liverpool pursuing a degree in football hooliganism medicine.

With the presence of all my cousins, you can almost imagine how cheerful it was in the house. The older cousins had a whale of a time teasing the smaller ones (adik Ayu suka kat Irwansyah ke?) and the even smaller cousins (read: toddlers) provided much needed 'cute-ness' in the house. I'm sure my grandmother was really happy to see all of her children and grandchildren under one roof.

Well then, if everybody's ready, let's go take a look at how Raya is celebrated in Kelantan, shall we?


Actually, before we go anywhere, I think it'd be in the best of everybody's interest that I announce something first. These pictures were taken using a normal Fujifilm digital camera, so I'd advise our shutterbug friends to not waste precious ATP looking for captions that go something like "Canon 400D - 18mm - F3.5 - 1/6 sec - ISO 800". The closest that my captions would come to would be "Fujifilm Finepix - 1 years old - 512MB XD card". And that's elaborative enough for me.

The ones sitting are my dad, my brother and I. The ones standing are my cousins

Something for the boys......

....and something for the girls.

These are the boys in my family (heh, dah bermisai janggut pun boy lagi ke?)

From left: Abang Fendi (he's my cousin's husband), Abe Chik (yes, that's the authentic spelling) and Ayah Din (as he's known to his nephews and nieces)

Another shot of the boys in the hood family

This is my dad, my mom, my dad's cousin and my sister

There. The complete family in red. My sis looks a bit out of place.

From left: My dad, my grandmother and my dad's (half?) sister.

My dad with a good friend of his. Yes, they finished what you're seeing in the picture.

Nasi Lemak Raya. Trust me, this will be THE dish of future Rayas.


Here's something interesting. On the second night of our stay in Kelantan, I woke up all of a sudden and realised that my little finger was throbbing with pain. Being curious (and half awake), I inspected what was it that was causing the discomfort. This is what I saw:

According to my aunt, apparently I had been bitten by a cockroach.


I so hate that creature. Mind you, this is the digital version of the picture. I also have the printed out version and that one looks even more horrific. I am half hoping that some Thailand director will come along and make a thriller movie entitled "The Finger" so that I can sell that picture to him as a promotional poster.

postscript: I really liked this year's Raya. There was something subtly different about it from the past Rayas; something which left a nice taste lingering in the mouth - much like all the ketupat, roti jala and gulai daging I had over there.

p.s.s. I scaled down the pictures from a considerably large 2408x 1536 to a measly 800x600. This serves a twofold purpose: 1) To cut down on upload size and 2) To minimise visibility of pimples and wrinkles.

p.s3 I'm sorry if this entry sounds 'unstable'. I was typing it in the wee hours of the morning after arriving home today.

Monday, 16 October 2006

Going on a Holiday

Well, not really. My finals is due in less than two weeks time and my mid-semester results (which funnily enough, came out only about four days ago) are still far from satisfactory. Getting a B- is not quite the kind of result you would want from a medical student, especially if the test concerns the endocrine system.


I do suppose that I'll be gone for awhile, what with the finals and the raya celebrations both just around the corner. In these coming two weeks, I predict that I'll be very busy collecting duit raya studying (or at least, trying hard to look as if I'm studying)

Therefore, before I make my leave, I would just like to take this opportunity to wish everyone happy fasting and happy celebrating this year's Eid. I don't know why, but I'm getting giddy with anticipation ahead of this year's celebration - most unbecoming of a young adult.

Monday, 2 October 2006

Oprah once said on her show "There is something special about today. Today is the day you move out of your fat zone!" I considered carefully those words as I took in yet another spoonful of cream (creme?) caramel.

Where is my fat zone? Is it that narrow band between my waist and ribs, or does it mysteriously envelope my room, humming subsonically like the force field emitted by some glowing kernel of nuclear fatness? Does it perhaps, move along with me, all the time hovering over my head like a small personalised raincloud, raining not water, but small hourly increments of pudge?

Yes, that must be it! The quality of my increasing weight stems not from the things that I eat and drink - it droppeth upon me like dew from the heavens. When I feel the buttons beginning to strain and the seems begin to sigh, it is not my doing. It is because I am still living in my fat zone.

Whoever conjured up the ridiculous idea that you can lose weight during the fasting month should be covered with sugar and tied to a rambutan tree.

I used to believe that idea, mind you. I used to think that since you weren't eating throughout the day - unless you were cheating, of course - then you could easily lose a couple of pounds daily. Add in the daily physical activites, and you were on the fast track to swimsuit model waistlines. It seemed that there was hope after all for those suburban whales out there. They could finally slim down to look like Kate Moss.

But that is all in the past. I have long abandoned all fantasies concerning the idea of losing weight in Ramadhan. Indeed it should have come as no surprise when you consider how I am 'forced' to finish the last few scoopfuls of rice each time we (my housemates and I) sit down for iftar. How everybody ends up buying a few bagfuls of kuih each time they visit the bazaar. And how dessert strangely enough becomes a must rather than an option.

Never mind. If it is my fate to be one with the suburban whales, then I quietly submit myself to what shall be.

postscript: Actually, I was dead out of ideas on what to post this time around. But still, I wanted to do so after reading all the other bloggers' nice, nice entries on Ramadhan. So here is the end product of approximately half an hour's worth of mindless scribbling.

Sunday, 17 September 2006

While You Were Sleeping.....

...I was the poor shmuck who stayed awake in the wee hours of the morning, trying to make sense of the developing heart of an embryo.

I have, in the past two weeks or so, been tied up with so many commitments. So much so that I had a vague feeling of similarity to mynn, who, if you recall, also has had his hands full trying to meet the needs of all his demanding wives. My sympathies for the poor fellow.

First of all there were the mid-semester tests. Funnily enough, this time around, they weren't held on succesive days. Instead I had Biochemistry on a Tuesday, Physiology on a Thursday, Anatomy on another Tuesday the following week and Embryology just last Friday. It's enough to make anyone run out of the room whilst clawing at their own skin, screaming "No more! No more!"

I'm sorry. My imagination ran wild back there.

Other than that, I was also involved in the Inter-Medical School Physiology Quiz which was held on the 9th of September in Universiti Malaya. The majority of local IPTAs and private medical colleges took part with overseas guest from Taiwan, Hong Kong and our ever beloved neighbour Singapore also joining in the party.

I can tell you, on the actual quiz day itself, the intellectual atmosphere was so intense that if President Bush had walked in, I think he'd have collapsed from the very pressure of trying to comprehend what the participants were talking about. I am luckily, no President Bush, and understood most of the terms used.

To be completely honest with you, I'm not at all satisfied with the fact that our journey ended at the first round. What makes me even more angry is the fact that we lost because of unequal degree of questions. Imagine, we couldn't answer our own questions, but when it came to the questions of other groups, we could give the correct answer without blinking so much of an eye. Not one to be blowing my own trumpet, I hasten to point out that when I said 'we', what I meant was my other team members. However, our Physiology lecturer was quick to console our forelorn hearts by saying "We can always participate next year. By that time, we'll be better than this year".

So there. Two events which have caused me considerable insomnia for the past two weeks. If you excuse me, I think I'll take a catnap now. Yawn~

Monday, 4 September 2006

Love Is A Windy Day

"This is the perfect kind of weather for some loving" said Awe to me the other day. He was, mind you, clad only in his purplish towel whilst having this faraway look on his face as he peered out of the bedroom window.

"Oh really? What makes you say that?" I replied with a face that looked rather blank, even for my lowly standards.

Awe then went on to give a short speech on why he thought that a windy day with some gray clouds penetrated by a few rays of faint sunshine was the perfect setting for some romance. By the time he was finished, I still couldn't understand what was the connection between the meteorological profile of that day and his idea of passion. Plus, I was getting hungry.

Love. The perfect thing to have a conversation about when you're half naked and wondering where life is taking you to.

Friday, 18 August 2006

Money Matters

Since everybody has been expressing their concern about my entries of late, I have decided to ease up a little bit. One can only go so far in tormenting others with tasteless jokes before they're hauled off to court on the charges of causing grievous hurt. Besides, I would not want for little children to be reading my blog and then complain to their parents afterwards of how they never, ever want to connect to the Internet again.

But anyway.

It has crossed my mind that in the past few years, I have become no good with money. I don't mean that I would prefer to avoid money, or that I am afraid of it. Nothing of the sort. I am no chrematophobe. No, not me.

If I were a participant on Fear Factor, I would not hesitate to dangle on a tightrope suspended in mid air over a deep pit filled with money. Lock me up in a small room and send currency swirling about in a vicious and threatening manner, I will not blink an eye. If I were to pull up my pants one morning and discover that several banknotes had crawled up the legs in search of warmth from the chilly night before, you would not hear me shriek.

So no. I have no aversion towards money. I would even go so far as to say that when it comes to money, I am an enthusiast. In fact, I'm planning to start my own collection.

What I mean to say is that I am no good when it comes to working with money. Some people understand money as a living organism, with its own logic and life cycle. Some people can feel the particular rhythm inside money, and allow money its own momentum and follow as it leads them to even more money, just as the flowing river leads you to the sea. Not me. I cycle through alternating phases of hoarding and spending, interrupted only by alternating phases of spending and spending.

I do not let my money work for me. "No money of mine is going to work!" I thunder. "Not while I am the head of this house!" (Of course, I am not the head of any house yet. But it is a fantasy that coyly plays in my head often).

Every so often my parents will ask me to sit down with them and they will explain the state of my finances and advise how best to improve things, but when they do I sit there feeling like an illiterate Sicilian peasant farmer with a large moustache when the men from the government come around with their clipboards. They rattle on about savings and accounts and dividends, and I watch their lips move and think about supper. When they are finished, all I can think of saying is: "But do I have enough to feed my goats this winter?"

So honestly speaking, I have yet a long way to go in reaching financial maturity. Of course, the same goes for intellectual, behavioural and social maturities, if you ask my parents.

postscript: On a happier note, I would like to congratulate Ayumi on her excellent results. Plans to send her off at the airport are already underway *smile*

Tuesday, 15 August 2006

Hear, hear

A cause of concern for most of the youth today is the mindless advice being handed around like a length of artificial lawn being rolled out. Normally, the counsel would come from professional advice givers and well meaning, but misguided relatives.

Advice is a little bit like the low impact aerobic skiing machine that you bought over the late night Home Shopping Network. You purchase the bulky piece of machinery, hide it under the bed without actually ever using it yourself and then hand it down to some relative who so happened to drop by the day you were spring cleaning the house. Advice gets punted around by one generation like a rusty soup can and eventually arrives at the doorstep of the next generation, only to be punted around in its turn.

For one thing, I have always wondered about those puzzling hand-me-down bits of wisdom. Why, do we insist that "Where there's a will there's a way" when in fact in recent years, it's been a Kate Middleton? Or that "A watched pot never boils"? That is one of the fastest ways to shatter the myth of parent infallability. All the little tyke needs is a pot, some water, a heat source and a pair of eyes and he will come to know that you are all busk and bunkum, just like your parents before you.

Another thing; the next time you are tempted to solemnly intone that "A rolling stone gathers no moss", I suggest that you take a gander at Keith Richard's teeth.

No wonder young people don't want to listen to advice anymore.

Monday, 7 August 2006

Something About Me

Did that title catch your attention? Did it? It didn't? Maybe next time, I'll have to wrap my titles heavily in flypaper. Just to make sure that I get your attention.

I did a bit of reminiscing today. And by reminiscing, I don't mean I read and re-read DITH's blog over and over again. Anyway, there I was sitting by myself on the sofa with a glass of plain water in my hand, thinking about how life has been so far.

Actually, I'm not too proud of it, but I have never entirely trusted the human race. I never really have. In fact, personally I feel that any race which doesn't have the merry ring of a gun shot to start you off and a finishing line where you can wave your arms in the air once you've crossed it, deserves to be looked upon with eyes full of suspicion. In those kinds of races, sooner or later you're going to have this feeling that you are turninig into Forrest Gump; running the endless run.

But I digress.

I consider myself - what some people might call - a pessimist. I always look on the negative side of things and people. Where others see summer in a flower, I see a funeral. My outlook towards life is a very bleak and gloomy one, plus, I only ever use tungsten lightbulbs.

It is of the general opinion that pessimists are bad. That pessimists are evil. They should be gripped firmly by the collar and hurled out of the window or tied up in sacks weighted with rocks and dropped into a river. Pessimists should be avoided like the plague, lest you want to get infected.

For me, I think that pessimists are okay - though it would be advisable to not hang around with more than one of them at the same time. Generally, pessimists are more satisfied with life as they have lower thresholds of satisfaction. If anything manages to be better than the lowly benchmark that they have set, then the pessimists will have been pacified.

Still, it's nice to be given a shot of optimism from time to time. And at the end of the day, whether we are pessimists or optimists, we are all humans. And humans get hungry and need to eat. Which I am about to do right now. Later ~

Wednesday, 2 August 2006

When My Mind Is Idle

A quirky question I was thinking about the other day.

If there is one common trait that all women share, what would it be?

And no, the answer "their anatomy" didn't cross my mind.

Any feedback to this? Of course, if you are a woman, you are more than invited to give a common trait that all men share (which in my humble opinion, shouldn't be all that hard. Women have a lot to say on men, don't they?)

Friday, 21 July 2006

A Birthday Wish

Here's wishing Happy Birthday to my dad, who happens to be a day older than pycnogenol, assuming that they were born in the same year. However, I don't think they do share the same birth year as my dad is waaaaaaayyyyy younger than that mysterious blogger - or so he tells me. My dad, I mean. Not pycnogenol.

And no, I'm not giving out his age. It's no use trying to cajoule me into revealing how old is my dad. I will keep that secret safe with me.

However, I will tell you that he's not 6 years old. Nor is he 60.

Anyway, here's another round of Happy Birthday to you dad. Hope the year brings lots of cheer and laughter for you. Ameen.

Tuesday, 18 July 2006

A Riddle

Try to guess what are the four letters. Example: D-I-N-G

Note to self: Never, ever write an ambiguous headline for national daily.

Saturday, 15 July 2006

Peculiarities on a Shopping Trip

Some peculiar sights which caught my eye today as I was following the family on a shopping trip:

1. A rather fat round man was looking at some weight scales put on display. Nothing wrong there; until he proceeds to take one, places it on the floor and nonchalantly stands on it to see how much he weighs. Still nothing wrong there, you might say. But consider this: the scale was still in its box, or whatever was left of the poor thing after being semi-crushed by The Round Man.

2. A parade of women aged 30-something. I use the term parade here because that was how they were moving together; in a parade. Did I mention that they were wearing short black skirts and ties? Yes, ties. Like the ones that men wear. The ones where they gradually broaden at the inferior end. Not only that, these parading women also had their neck(?) length hair smartly slicked back; using pomade, I assume.

3. There was this one slighty old lady (I guess she's into her late forties) who was doing her shopping all alone. And she had the thickest make up a woman could ever possibly apply to her face. Her eyeliner was so thick that it made her resemble a killer whale. Now I don't mean to be ungallant, but this old lady scared me.

4. My own reflection in a mirror. Weird.

Thursday, 6 July 2006


As of lately, there has been a lot of talk about change. It's true. If you don't believe me, try standing idly at any common sidewalk and listen to what the people passing by are talking about. Yes, I know that it's not ethically correct to be eavesdropping on other people's conversations, but that is not the point I am trying to make here. The point I am trying to make is that people are talking a lot about change.

Nowadays, you can hardly enter your local bookstore without coming across one of those unattractive looking self help books that touch upon the subject. Neither can you sit down and unwind at a coffeeshop without spilling your cup of cuppacino when you accidentally overhear the couple next to you arguing whether He should change his diet routine just for Her sake.


If you ask me, change has been around for a long time, and it'll be around for quite some time more. It makes me wonder why people are making such a fuss over it - verbaly - now. I mean, if you want to change, go on ahead. There's no need for you to announce it to the world (or buy one of those unattractive looking self help books, for that matter). In fact, more often than not, the moment you declare your ambitious ambition to change, you end up reverting back to your old ways. Which makes the whole affair of announcing your change look like a big waste of physical, emotional, financial (and of course, salivary) resources.

I'm not saying that people shouldn't change. No, no. I do not mean to say that at all. By all means, go ahead and change - if it's for the better. Do change your diet plan if you've just been told by your doctor that you have a case of Familial Hyperlipidemia. Or do change your hairstyle if your best friend says that it makes you look like Donald Trump (which may not be necessarily be a bad thing, especially more so if you're in the real estate business). If the change is for the better, I have nothing against it. But if you don't mind, I'd rather you keep to yourself the plan to change and not announce it loudly as to disturb other people.

If somebody came up to me with the intention to change and asked for my advice on it, it would be this: Keep a small jar on the kitchen counter. When you have come back home late at night after work and buried the keys under the tiles (for safety reasons, obviously), make it a habit to put inside that small jar the change you have accumulated throughout the day. I suggest you donate the smaller ones to the needy, or dump them onto your neighbour's lawn. Which might explain the severe look on his face everytime you greet him in the mornings. But that is of no importance to what we are discussing here. Remember, change is inevitable, but if not managed wisely, it will cause an unsightly bulge in the coin section of your wallet.

Saturday, 24 June 2006

I've moved to the North Pole

Or at least that's where I think I've gone to. The new hostel we're living in (Pandan Mewah Heights) is as cool as one of mama sarah's summer berry ice cubes. No kidding. I spent the first night on my bed without my comforter, and ended up with a throbbing head, a couple of cold feet and a stuffed nose.

Conclusion: I am a weakling against the harsh cold. If I were an MMORPG wizard, my attribute would be Fire.

Even as of now, I still have a phlegmatic cough which I swear to you, is trying to take control over me. The evil monster is lurking somewhere along my respiratory tract, just waiting for me to forget of its existence. When that time comes, the beast shall strike, leaving me with barely a chance to breath! Aiii...!!!!!

Humour me here. It's been a long week, and I'm bored to death.


I think I'll stop here. Actually, there was something that I wanted to write on, but I'll have to reconsider whether it's appropriate to be put here or not. I'm afraid that some people might not be able to accept it coming from a person of my age.

p.s. Kenakelayan, should I dive into the Discworld saga by Pratchet? The library has the whole set, so I was wondering if it'd be a good idea to start developing a 'book habit', what with my status as a second year medical student.

Friday, 16 June 2006

It's Not Goodbye....

.....rather, a "See you around".

I'm going back to my hostel tomorrow (today actually, as the clock is already showing 1.36 a.m.)

Most probably I'll not have the time to be updating - and leave comments at the other bloggers' sites - as often as I would like to.

Therefore, my semi-absence is forwarded with many, many apologies.

Rest assured, I'll try to update and leave feedback whenever I can.

Can't keep a keen blogger back, can you?

Till then, see you around.

Tuesday, 13 June 2006

On Being In Control

Do you feel you're in control? It's easy to tell if you're the boss of some leading money-spinning, megawatt conglomerate. Or even when you're behind the wheels of a bus; you know you're in control (at least before you start nodding off to sleep).

How about your life? Do you feel that you're in control of your life? If yes, are you sure about it? Or are you just trying to convince yourself?

What does it mean to be in control of your life?

How do you know you're in charge, and not merely being played as a puppet?

Sunday, 11 June 2006


I think I really am getting old. Otherwise, how would you explain this remake of a Stevie Wonder tune?

But it really is a nice song. And no, I don't have any weird impressions of George Michael. He's a good singer as far as I'm concerned.

Friday, 9 June 2006

Lessons Learnt in Langkawi Part 3 (Or Get On With It!!)

This is a signboard to Pantai Chenang. However, I could not find a signboard to Pantai Chuchah.

In contrast to the misadventures we had on the second day, the third day was quite calm and relaxed. Not to mention hot. Yes, the sun was shining away happily, burning our sorry skins to a light crisp.

We managed a visit to the Paddy Garden in the morning. But to my dismay, the place was deserted! Save for the person at the counter, of course. Not only that, even the paddy were way past their harvest schedule. A few lots were supposed to be harvested sometime back in 2005, yet they still stood there like galiant soldiers protecting their turf.

This picture is dedicated to mama sarah, who hopefully after this will erase the 6-year old mental image.

Next up was supposed to be Galleria Perdana. That's where the former Prime Minister - namely, Dr Mahathir - keeps his old stuff. A convenient dump museum, I suppose. However, we never got to see his collection of memories as we ended up at the Langkawi Cultural Centre.

At the Cultural Centre, you get to see first-hand how several traditional Malay carfts are produced. They have these booths that house one or two people who diligently carry out their trade despite having a number of people ogling at observing them. My mom even sat down to have a light chat with one of the 'artisans' who was working on a terendak (that's what my mom told me)

Tekat? Tetak? Tekak? I do not know.

A nice surprise awaited us. It so happened that our visit this time around coincided with the last show of a troupe of traditional Malay dancers. The dances were entertaining, with them performing for around 45 minutes. Imagine the calories that they managed to burn that day! A few dances worth mentioning were the tarian payung, tarian kraftangan and tarian burung merak. Again, these are all made up names which I have come up to describe the movements of those eight or nine dancers. To repeat them in public is to open yourself to general humiliation. You have been warned.

Unfortunately, the peacock picture can't be included as it was err...unfit for publication.

Later in the afternoon, we stopped by the beach (the one which had a cendol seller) for one last time. I had the camera ready in hand just in case I could snap some nice sunset pictures. That was some wishful thinking indeed. Nice, my elbow.

They might be giants.

Two island men mending their boat.

On the final day, there was an atmosphere of slight glum. Probably due to the fact that we were finally going home; but I had a sneaking suspicion that it was also due to having to pack up our things into the bags. Not the happiest chore on Earth.

On our way to the jetty, we came across this slightly quaint looking building. "It can't be...." I thought to myself.

On closer inspection, it was! This was Prof Wafa's clinic in Langkawi! I wondered if the old professor was in. I never did get to find out as my parents beckoned for me to rush.

But where were we rushing to? It turned out to be that we were rushing to one of the shopping complexes to get my brother a new mobile phone. The lucky devil!

Lesson Learnt: If you whine and moan long enough, you will get your heart's desire. And a nagging afterwards.

We arrived at the jetty around noon, and since the next ferry was only at 1.30 p.m. we had lunch at Hameed's Curry House (is it a curry house?). Hameed's can also be found in Kajang, at the ground floor of Metro Kajang. So, you don't have to go that far to sample some of Hameed's cooking, which I consider average. Except for mynn and family, I suppose. When are you coming back to Malaysia???

The ferry used on our journey this time around was waaaay much better.

All in all, Langkawi was a nice vacation. The family teased each other alot; we exchanged jokes, and that to me is nice. Usually the things that we exchange is sarcastic (not to mention caustic) remarks. And then there are the parents who love to nag advise their beloved children. We all left Langkawi with pleasant memories, I'd say.

By the way, here is a picture of the plate I used during lunch on the second last day. I had the meal with some people whom are well known to a good number of bloggers here. Who were those people? Did they pay for lunch? Why aren't there any other pictures besides my "scrapped-clean" plate?

The comment box is now open for speculation :P

Monday, 5 June 2006

Lessons Learnt in Langkawi Part 2

Cool things to do in Langkawi. Stand-not-so-straight.

On the second day of our holiday in Langkawi, I woke up really early. Or at least, early by my standards. The reason being was because I was hoping to capture a few pictures of the sunrise. Unfortunately, the view from our unit was very limited. Not only that, I wasn't allowed to use the car to drive to a nearby beach to get my pictures. What a letdown :(

Luckily, the rest of the day turned out to be better.

After a simple breakfast of mushroom soup and some rather dry bread, we set out in search of adventure. However, initially, it seemed to me that my dad was just driving the car with nowhere particular in mind. All that changed when we came across the Marina Bay. I must inform you that I just made up the name 'Marina Bay' to describe the place; lest any of you go to Langkawi, try to look for it, only to return heartbroken. Anyway, we stopped there to take some photos. "This is turning out to be quite a photo trip", I thought to myself.

At the Marina Bay

A row, row, row of boats...

Lesson learnt: Photo opportunities may arise at any moment. Be alert at all times.

After having taken enough shots, my dad thought that it'd be nice to have a go on the cable car. And that's just what we did; have a go on the cable car. Langkawi's Cable Car takes you for a ride all the way to the top of Mount Chinchang, which stands approximately 700 meters above sea level. The scenery itself was worth every ringgit paid for the ride (RM15 for adults, RM5 for children).

That is the top-most station. Note the two viewing stands at either side which look like flying saucers.

Looks kind of like the "Sky Kingdom" to me. What say you?

After having enjoyed the breath-taking scenery, we went down and played with some rabbits. As we were entertaining the sniffing mammals, a man was walking around, selling rabbit feed for one ringgit a packet. Another money-making scheme, obviously. But since the kids were so excited at the idea of feeding real, live animals, my mom bought a couple of packets for them anyway. The end result? A lot of squealing (from my siblings, not the rabbits) and a few rabbits doing stand-up tricks.

This was one of the better behaved rabbits.

Lesson Learnt: Rabbits are cute things, but they still may nibble your hand. And that is not cute.

Next up on the agenda was a visit to the Seven Wells Waterfall. But owing to some unavoidable circumstances (read: the journey up was far too tiring), we settled for a cascade which was situated at lower ground. Whilst I was entrusted to safeguard the belongings, the rest of the family had fun splashing in the cool water.

A waterfall! What's that purple shade in the bottom-right bottom-left corner?

I can tell you, the rocks are arranged beautifully; so much so that they form some kind of slide. Naturally, my siblings had a go at sliding down the slippery slide. Although it wasn't as good as those slides in Sunway Lagoon, the setting still provided a nice ride down. Still, in the end, my sibs ended up with sore bottoms.

Lesson Learnt: Friction can be a pain in the arse.

The next day, it rained again. I was pleasantly surprised at this, and even said a small thank you prayer silently. Little did I know that the rain would bring more than just rahmat to the family that day.

Since it was a wet day, my dad decided that it'd be fitting to go shopping, or at the very least, window shopping. We rolled off at around ten in the morning with the rain drizzling lightly. A very funny thing happened on out way to the shopping complex; we followed a black van into the wrong road for no apparent reason. After realising the mistake, the car was steered into a mosque compound so that we could retrace our path.

It'd must have been an unlucky day for us. My dad Somebody behind the wheels reversed the car without being aware that the ground wasn't as sincere as it looked. To avoid any unneccessary headaches in describing the mishap, here are a couple of diagrams to explain what happened.

Diagram 1: This is the car being reversed.

Diagram 2: This is the car performing a balancing trick.

Lesson Learnt: You can guess this one by yourself.

To make things more miserable, it was raining heavily as the rest of us tried to push the car back up onto normal ground. As my dad put it, "I was laughing out loud to see you all wet like otters!". Grrr.

Anyway, we went on with the initial plan i.e shopping, and bought some chocolates, some kain, and a small towel to dry ourselves. Needless to say, it was rather uncomfortable walking around with very damp - and somewhat dirty - clothes. Our (mis)adventures for the day were ended with some nice cendol whilst admiring the vastness of the sea in mid day sun.

(to be continued....)

Friday, 2 June 2006

Lessons Learnt in Langkawi Part 1

That's the eagle which is suspected of giving Langkawi its name.

Lesson #1
You will come back from your holiday in Langkawi with your skin resembling the colour of an overcooked currypuff, so don't bother writing an entry beforehand expressing your hopes and dreams of a non-burnt future.

It's just like what drroza said; " Your island trip will have some form of education or other. Just be on the look out and for sure you'll learn something useful". Well, here is what I learned as I enjoyed my holiday in Langkawi.


On the day of travelling, we took heed of Pycnogenol's advice and set off very early in the morning. By early, I meant somewhat around 4 a.m. As we tried to find our way into the highway, I was quite surprised to see a few eateries still occupied with customers who were having either a very late dinner, or a very early breakfast. This was somewhere along Kepong and Segambut.

Lesson learnt: There are people out there who have the feeding habits of bats.

Eventually, after a few wrong turns and some half-hearted bickering, we managed to get ourselves into the highway. From there, it was smooth sailing all the way to Kuala Kedah. Of course, we stopped at one of the RnR centres for Subuh prayers and had nasi lemak to fill up our tummies (mind you, the nasi lemak was nothing to shout about), but that is of no significance to my tale, so I'm going to leave that bit out. Eyh?

We arrived at the Kuala Kedah jetty around ten. By that time, the sun was already shining brightly; and let me tell you, the sun shines brighter in Kedah than it does in other Peninsular states. Yes, it does. Eventhough it was only 10 o' clock, I felt like it was already noon. My dad left the vehicle at one of the 'car kindergartens' and was charged RM30. After having ensured that we hadn't left anything behind, my family and I made our way inside the jetty complex(?) to purchase our tickets. By chance, we were in time for the 10.30 ferry. Splendid!

Guess which one was our ride for the day.

We 'rocked and rolled' on the ferry for about one and a half hour whilst being served with the Thai movie Tom Yum Goong (Gung?). For those who don't know it, the story is about a young Thai lad who goes on a continental search for his kidnapped family. Continental because he ends up in Australia halfway through the movie. By the way, the family that I mentioned earlier takes on the form of a 3500 kilogram mother elephant and her baby. How can a Thai chap belong to a member of the Elephantidae family? Bugs me.

Lesson learnt: If you can't stand rock and roll, then you had better just stick to television. Also, Man and Elephant may be related, eventhough they look nothing as much as the other.

Finally, we arrived at the Kuah jetty somewhat around noon. Surprisingly, we were greeted by cloudy skies and wet floors. In other words, it was raining! Fancy that, rain in Langkawi!

Since most of the family members were already famished, we decided to have lunch at the LADA complex. No, it's not a chilli research buliding. LADA stands for Langkawi Development Authority, and they have a very nice cafeteria where you can have your fill. Luch was followed by some shopping at the shopping complex situated conveniently next door.

By 3 o' clock, we were ready to check in at our resort (by the way, we rented a sporty Wira to get around). The Perdana Beach Resort is in Padang Matsirat, a 15 to 20 minutes drive from Kuah. It's a nice, quiet place where you can relax far from the hustle and bustle of town.

Not wanting to waste precious time, my family and I bathed, donned fresh clothes, said our prayers and went to town. After driving around for a bit, we eventually arrived at Idaman Suri. Idaman Suri happens to be the hip place to buy household items such as melanine cookeryware (is that even a word?!), pots and pans, travelling bags, woodcrafts and chocolate. Is chocolate a household item? I very much doubt it, but my sister thinks otherwise.

My siblings ogling at some kind of machine from the past. I think it's called a public phone.

Only people with 'Wan Thai' can enter this restaurant. Those with two thighs are not welcomed.

Both my parents did some extensive browsing. I should've known better that that was a sign of things to come. We went window shopping until late into the afternoon. On our way back to the resort, we stopped by a beach to watch the beautiful sunset.

Note the boat under the tree

Playing against the sunset.
(to be continued.....)

Saturday, 27 May 2006

A Hard Day's Night

Last night I had the toughest time of my life trying to fall asleep, which is something out of the normal. Usually, I'll be able to fall asleep as soon as my head comes in contact with the pillow. And also after I've undergone my compulsory sleep ritual.

Hiyoshi's Sleep Ritual

1) Lie down on back
2) Turn to right side while clutching at blanket (toto sebenarnya)
3) Turn to left side
4) Lie down on back again
5) Rub my feet against my blanket @ toto
6) Rub my feet against the bed cover
7) Repeat steps 1 to 6 until lose conscienceness.

Normally, after I perform my sleep ritual, I'll be off to Dreamland in no time. But last night was different. Strange, in fact. I had been tossing and turning in my bed, yet I still couldn't sleep. I dare say that I tossed and turned quite a number of times to feel that if I were a helping of salad, I'd be pretty much ready to be served.

When I can't fall asleep, I'll end up thinking too much (or is that the other way around?). Anyway, I was thinking about my life so far, and what I've been through, about how I've been swallowing much of the bitterness that I've faced lately...and then I started to feel sorry for myself.

It was then that I decided I had better go to sleep soon before I was swept away by a wave of melancholy. Which I did.

Friday, 26 May 2006

How To Save Electricity

I suppose TNB really is serious in its business to promote energy conservation amongst the people. First, it was the hike in tariff rates.

Then, it was a blackout in my housing area which lasted the whole hot afternoon. It was the second time this week.

I think we managed to save a few units of electricity there.

Thursday, 25 May 2006

An Island Trip!

Yes, you read that right: another island trip. And this time, it's to Langkawi. I suppose you could say that I'm hot on the heels of drroza (although I very much doubt that there'll be any educational values in this island trip!)

I can't promise any stunning beach photos; unless I cut out the ones from the tourist pamphlets and scan them. But that'd be cheating.

I've been to Langkawi once. Back in April 2004, when it was SWELTERINGLY hot. I came back looking like a freshly baked gingerbread-man. No, no...that's an understatement. I was close to the colour of bubur asyura actually. Yes, that's the colour.

Hope I don't have to go through that again.

Wednesday, 24 May 2006

The Reason

The decision to switch from xanga to blogspot had been playing on my mind for quite some time now. Indeed, many a times in the past the temptation to move had been there, but I stayed on due to sentimental reasons (guess I'm not that heartless after all)

However, I made up my mind this time around because I felt that it's time to open up my doors to more people. Yes, this is the very same reason that I gave in my old blog, so shoot me. Other than that, a few more excuses why I felt that I needed to move on:

1. Hints from a few colleagues that they wanted to leave feedback on my blog, but didn't want to go through the hassle of signing up for an account.

2. I wanted a new layout (it seems that xanga only lets you change your layout if you're a premium user. Maybe I'm wrong. I don't know)

3. All of a sudden, the pop-up comment box looks strangely inviting.

4. Short posts don't look half as good on xanga as they would on blogspot.

So there you are. A few (in)valid reasons justifying my move. Honestly, there's another reason which I didn't put up there as I was a bit ashamed to do so. But since this is a new blog, what the heck.

Actually, I was kind of finding it a bit hard to write put up new posts at my old blog site. A case of dried up ideas, or simply lack of inspiration? Whatever it was, I was starting to find it a bit taxing to blog there.

Therefore I hope with this new site, I'll find back the joy that is blogging.

Welcome To The New Grounds!

Since there's nothing much yet here, you can always go back to my xanga site to read more.