Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Work and more work!?

Argh! I have to take back my words..

Work is NOT getting less at this first week of Ramadan! In fact, I have more work this week and next than the previous two weeks!

No time to even rest and relax besides at this wee hour of the morning - my sleeping habit is not admirable i know..

Better go and sleep soon as I have a morning assignment tomorrow ~ and a long day to go..

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Looking forward to ... :)

Just did a count(down) - 23 more working days to go and then I am FREE!!

To think of it, it's quite timely to quit at this time.. as according to past experience, my last month of service will be rather quiet - as it is the fasting month. In fact, I'm even tempted to take two days leave at the end so I leave before Raya. Will think about that...

Sis and nephews and niece will be back end of Oct for week, in conjunction with mom's birthday. Can't wait to see the kids!, especially little Alexis.. All three of them got loads of presents waiting for them already. Originally dad and mom were supposed to go HK a couple of weeks back but the trip was canceled.

Nov will be a time of relaxing/lepaking. But 2nd half of the month, I'll be given the responsibility to look after the house and grandma and a new maid (also with a current one) when dad and mom go to Australia a two-week holiday with their friends. And when they return.. hehe, it's my turn.

Since I've already decided to take a break till end of the year, I thought I should seize the opportunity to travel a bit! I'll still go to Hong Kong as planned long time ago, but that doesnt seem enough :p (since HK is so familiar already) I'll also be going to Taipei!

I've only been to Taiwan once and that was more than 20 years ago! I chose the place as it fits in my travel route nicely.. and best of all, managed to find a friend who is keen to go there too!
Was busy calling travel agent over Fri-Sat to book since it's Matta Fair now. It wont exactly be budget though as we are going on free-and-easy. So have to fork out some of my last month's pay and bonus..

So it will be a 10-day holiday for me in early December - 4 days in Taipei and 6 days in Hong Kong. Planned to go Disneyland, catch up with friends and maybe Macau if there's time... Will be back for my birthday and Christmas.. (errr.. not really looking forward to the former though!)

Gasp! And then.. that will be the end of 2006 already! :0

of dad and me

I seldom post personal thoughts and feelings.. (so pls skip it if u don't want to be bored..)

It's not easy being the only unmarried child living with your parents. My only sister is married and living in Hong Kong for 11 years now.

It is a privilege at times, but a burden at others.. I don't dare to say i'm the most filial child around, especially for a traditional Chinese family. And to be fair, my parents do give me lots of freedom and independence.. The thing is, I feel I can't live up to their expectations at times, especially my dad - the perfectionist and over-critical person as he is (which he admits it too).

You see, we always show our truest colours at home. Well, I do especially we are a close-knit family. My relationship with my parents has always been close and intimate. I would talk to them about almost everything - from my work woes to even relationship related things (which I hardly need to talk about these days) But at the same time, I seem to be inadvertantly getting on their nerves from time to time.. be it personal bad habit like sleeping too late (irritates mom), not keeping my room neat enough (irritates dad) to the way I talk and react!

Yeah.. that's the thing. I'm quite an impulsive person but nature and sometimes I don't really rein my tongue. But I feel quite sad that dad keeps picking on the way (and not the content) that I speak.

For instance, there is something that I want to tell him. And maybe I get a little `kancheong' (excited) and speak a bit fast.. then he would just cut me off, with a frowning, disapproving expression and criticise me for speaking fast. It seems like a small matter but he has done it time after time. I had tried to be a bit more careful with him.. but still, it happened because that's the way I normally talk!!

Granted, at times, I do deserve to be reminded or even reprimanded for some of my loud and emotional remarks. But even at times when I'm perfectly calm but just speak too fast and a bit louder than his liking, I get criticised.

So today over lunch, the same thing happened. And for once instead of questioning back, I just kept quiet and didn't even finish the `story'. But then he was not happy also, thinking that I was angry and went on with his lecture.. though not too fierce. And when I responded, he actually digged up incidents in the past to illustrate how `unrefined' I am with my speech and attitude.. (sigh) But we had already `sorted out' those issues in the past. He still wanted to prove that he has every right to correct me though this time I didn't do anything like that.

Yes, inside I was quite upset.. but no use trying even to explain my side of the story, he gets more annoyed.

After all, he is the father and I am the child.

Anyway.. I'm glad no fights and quarrels ensued. He even talked to me about other stuff but somehow inside, I am more apprehended. Yes, I love my parents, I love my dad. But I just don't know how to be the perfect child that he longs for me to be. I know I need to improve in some areas, and what he says has a point. At the same time, I hope he will be a bit less critical and learn to accept both the good and weak points of people.. I will try to change and improve, with God's help, but it doesn't help when I get splashed with cold water on the head (a chinese saying) everytime for `wrongs' big AND small, or even when there is hardly no wrong done.

In fact, the incident just now prompted mom, who is also quite critical of me in many things, to tell dad that he's being too harsh..

But with mom, I also have a fair share of, though not as serious, problems. Thank goodness mom is more forgiving and `forgetful'. In that we will make up fast and she lets bygones be bygones and does not bring out incidents that had happened and settled years ago.

Honestly, I'm a bit afraid to be staying at home with dad all the time. (now that he's no longer working in China) For it's not just he and me, but also he and mom. Because of their individual characters, he gets angry at mom often too..

I think the only way is to be more `cautious' from now on, especially with the way I speak to him.. it's sad that i always can't live up to his standard, not that I don't want to.. and not trying to give myself excuses... for we are all `work in progress'.

My Father in Heaven knows that and I pray my dad will see that too..

Friday, September 22, 2006

Mid-Week Birthday Dinner

Many of my friends are camera shy, or rather blog-photo shy. :p But since it was a special day ie. May Yoke birthday, I decided I shall post some pix of our dinner for her at a Japanese restaurant on Wednesday.. (they're pretty decent shots!)

It turned out to be a cosy group of six as a couple of the gals were under the weather.. We had a good time catching up with one another, laughing and basically just chilling out.. and having fun taking photos with a hi-tech phone! (For some `creative' pix, check out Shan's blog - which prompted me to post the `proper version' of the night's photos! :p )

Dinner was pretty good with rather hearty portions. Then came the cake - which was handmade by the our baking expert friend fatboy - a gift from HL all the way from `Fragrant Harbour' to the birthday girl. May was pleasently suprised and uttered `I'm so touched!'

Not meaning to purposely flatter the baker but honestly (i'm brutally honest as he claims), i thought it was probably one of the best Tiramisu cakes i've ever eaten.. if I was not watching my weight (well, trying to) I'll defintely go for a second big slice!

We continue chatting and sipping our drinks (green tea) and left about 10. Since most ppl need to sleep early to rise early the next day (me excluded)

May Yoke, blessed birthday and many happy returns of the day.. and now you're famous! hehehehe.. ;)

Birthday Girl with her pressies from us.. Posted by Picasa

lynn(the creative photographer), may yoke (birthday girl!) and shih-ann (owner of the creative phone)- and hello kitty! ;) Posted by Picasa

sook yian, hsiao ley and me Posted by Picasa

errrr.. have they forgotten my age? ;p Posted by Picasa

cutting the tiramisu cake Posted by Picasa

All smiles.. a group pix of us with the cake Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

`Faith and Vocation' weekend

Finally... found some time to blog tonite!

Had a two busy work days and still
kinda recovering from the weekend! Well, it was a good though tiring weekend away - although it lasted less than 24 hours..!

I went for the Christian Journalists Network (CJN) retreat at PD on Sat -Sun. I must admit that although i was keen when I signed up.. in the few days before weekend, I was having some second thoughts. Mainly because I was tired from work and stress and just want to basically `lepak' (idle) my weekend away if i can.. but then I'm glad I went although it turned out quite different from what I expected!

The drive down South was pretty good - just me and my car and the music.. :) met a short stretch of jam but then soon was cruising along the new highway which hardly had any cars!! (yep, i took these pix :p)

The last similar kinda retreat I went to was in 2000 at Arwana, which i didn't know was the same organisers :p So i thought I could like have a nice, reflective, quiet, spiritual kinda weekend away. And it turned out to be quite a `blast'. Yes, we had good, challenging and thought-provoking talks on the topic of `Faith & Vocation' and workshops and discussions, but... no, I didn't manage to have any
time by myself!

But I had fun! Caught up with colleagues and friends, some of whom I haven't really talked to or seen for some time (inclu
ding those in the same company even!) It was quite a small group - just 20 odd or so mainly from the English papers and a few from Chinese press.

I shared an `apartment' with three other journos - two from the same (parent) company and one formerly from the same company. And also met some new friends. We spent quite some time chatting, exchanging notes on work and stuff and even went for supper..

And it culminated with 10 of us at our apartment p
laying Taboo! And now, it has been quite some years since I last played the game.. it was so funny that we laughed our heads off most of the time! Too busy to take any pix!!

So the fellowship was great. But on a more serious note, we also learned much from the speakers - a many number of them - either from the industry or related to it. Rev Hwa Yung delivered the keynote sermon on Sat. evening which was quite thought-provoking. We then had split into groups to talk about suggestions/ problems on integrating our faith in our work - in this case, journalism.

The more interesting discussions actually took place the following morning although many of us were suffering form lack of sleep! At the Q&A sessions, like true journalists, many were `fighting' to speak! There were many questions and observations raised, as well as constructive suggestions on how, as Christian journalists, we could make a difference in our society and our nation, bearing the love of Christ... Although there are no conclusive solutions, I'm encouraged by the enthusiasm. We also learned from our four panel speakers, who spoke on the main challenges facing Christian journalists in international media, local media (English and Chinese) and alternative media.

I had a refreshing and great time at the retreat (despite the lack of sleep which took quite a toll on me the following day!). My prayer is that there will be more such meetings to come and that the CJN will grow, not just in numbers but in strength. And most importantly, as Christian journalists, we will truly strive to be `the salt of the earth' and `light of the world' even in our vocation...

And somehow.. personally, I think it has helped me to lessen the stress and disgruntle I often feel at work.. in the one month or so before my last day, I will just do my best in my job, remembering that ultimately my loyalty lies with God...

Monday, September 18, 2006


Too tired to complete the post I was writing.. ! was away for 24 hours (driving by myself189km) over the weekend - the retreat was a fulfilling but tiring one ..

Hardly any sleep on Sat. nite. Slept just but now really need to sleep again!

will finish the post soon..

Manic Monday, here it comes..!!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Sick of Work


I left office at 12:30am and had instant mee hoon as late dinner a while ago.. so tired.. but still need to ramble a bit just to let off steam.

Have been working on this `mega story' - (not really newsworthy stuff but it's related to the company we are affiliated to so... ) for two days and more now. Tedious stuff with information overload! Did a newstory and now a centre spread.. argh.. and in between other assignments to cover and stuff to write.

Gosh.. then there is another freelance article I have complete by end of the week.. half way now.

I want a break from work. I can't wait to my last day - in fact, i suddenly have the urge to take leave and forfeit the extra pay.. cos now I still have to work till Oct 27!

And it's only Wednesday - September 13. For once I wish time will fly...

Sunday, September 10, 2006

'Tis an unpredictable (work/dog) life

Some unpredictable situation is happening at work place. Yep, I can't disassociate myself with it yet since i'm still working till end of next month..

One thing about my job is that it's REALLY unpredictable.. I mean the work schedule and work load.. From Monday when I finished the usual columns and stuff, it looked like I was looking forward to a rather easy work week.. But then by mid-week that `crisis' happened, and at the same time, new and unexpected assignments have just cropped up..!

So it will be a REAL busy Monday.. starting with a meeting and then a few stories to finish and even supposed to go for an interview to which I don't know whether I can manage to do so! And at night, there is a meeting at church..

Not that I really had that much rest over the weekend. Needed to get up real early this morning for worship duties and Jelly had to act strange the whole night! She refused to sleep and was barking non-stop from her crate.. since around 1am till wee hours of the morning! I went down like four times to take her out, feed her, pacify her and then yest she was still making noise! I then let her sleep in my room.. But a hour or two later, she was restless again..

At one stage I felt like yelling and even crying at her! Gosh, now I can understand what mothers and fathers with young cyring babies feel.

I think I only managed to doze off for 2 hours or so in total.. was surprsied how I managed to keep awake the whole morning. Finally, came home and then caught up with a couple hours of sleep in the afternoon.

I bathed Jelly this afternoon and now she is sitting next to me like usual.. Just hope she would be back to her normal self tonite..sigh..

Now, I have to burn some midnight oil to do some work, or else I could never finish it tomorrow!!

What a start to another week...

Sardine-like Starry Night!

Question: Where do you get the largest gathering of local celebs jam packed together?

Answer: The new Louis Vuitton store opening at Starhill Gallery, KL.

Well, I am not a party person but when I knew I was getting an (rather exclusive) invitation to the LV opening, I was quite excited and curious.. since I read about its `grand' and `stylish' parties in LV stores opening at other cities.

And curiosity kills the cat. So I went, tagging along a girlfriend since I was told I could bring a guest too.. (i might think twice to go alone actually)

The dress code as stated in the invitation card said: fabuleux Now, fabulous can be subjective right?

Anyway, I went to my friend's house to get changed.. wearing about the only dress that can fit me now..

The first thing I thought after we were `signed in' was gosh, this is gonna be CROWDED. And it was! I was told there were 600 invitations but I think there must be close to 1,000 people there..

Hmm.. the supposed illumination ceremony didn't take place but the host and VIPs cut ribbon which I didnt get to see as I was standing behind..

Then, as the official opening of the store has taken place, guests could stroll in to 6,000 sq feet split level spanking new flagship stores with fashion items that are worth hundreds of thousands or perhaps milions bucks!

I recognised a lot of faces, but half of them won't know me.. and I'm a bit cut off from the fashion scene now.. It's rally a place to be seen as it seems to me that ALL the local celebs were there! From movie actors/actresses, theatre actors, artistes, singers, models, socialites to fashion designers, corporate figures and media people.

Didn't take that many photos of celebs as most people, besides the press and official photographers, were not taking photos.. And also just too many ppl to even take them properly!

Part of the crowds in the store..!! How do you begin to even look at the display like this? We were just inching forward slowly, not to trip over our dresses..

The deejay (?) spinning some music

Just some of the display on the shelves.

close-up of two handbags and a shoe..

Bumped into celebrity freelance journalist - the flamboyant Kee H.C. who was also a paparrazi at work.

My friend managed to snap this as Kee was taking a photo of Erra.

Doing some personal paparazzi stuff myself.. caught Starhill MD Francis Yeoh chatting with pretty lasses - Carmen Soo, Rachel Tan and Lina Teoh

Finally we made it through the store and out the other entrance at Starhill Gallery. A pix for remembrance.. :p

A violinist entertaining the crowd and he plays very well

Asked for a pix with fashion designer Melinda Looi as I thought her outfit was pretty `fabuleux'!

Mee Mee and I taking a rest on the sofa.. thanks to my three-inch stilletto hills, my feet were really killing me throughout the night and I had to like find places to sit now and then.. :(

Later, we were told that the party was three floors up and were guided to this place where there were free flow of drinks - champagne, wine and hors d'oeuvre.. The amount of bottles of champagne that were opened were just amazing!! And yeah, I did had quite a number of glasses

VIP celebrity of the night - newly wed Siti Nurhaliza gave a performance with a few Malay songs.

Siti, dressed in all black and rather conservative (true to her style) was a crowd and photographer puller

It only exaggerated my (lack of) height and figure standing next to Amber Chia, who was wearing a pair of shorts!

With two fashion editors I know quite well, whom I only saw at the later part of the night.

Perhaps what I enjoyed most - besides the food and drink :p - was I didn't expect to bump into some old acquaintances and friends who I met through work over the years. It was also a good chance to network and who knows, michgt even help in my future job hunting!

We left just before midnight, when the party was still in full swing. I could already feel the alcohol's effects already. On top of that, I couldn't wait to take off my shoes!

So, it was a pretty interesting experience and I did enjoy myself though not all of the time. But I know now that I'm not made for party scene.. it's simply too tiring.. and somehow I just don't feel I'm part of these glamorous group of people..

oh, might as well devulge that I got the invite because of my sis, who has a friend who works with LV Hong Kong (quite high ranking). I didn't ask for it though but it's nice my sis and her friend thought of me. ;) Thanks for the invitation!

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

How do you write a good cover letter?

I just spent two hours updating my resume and improving on the laygout. And now, am taking a break as I was stuck in what I think is the hardest thing to do - writing a cover letter!

I really don't know how to `sell' myself than just write the facts.. hmm.. I even went to research on the Net and gosh, some of the cover letters are more like creative fictional tales than job applications to me.. and I just can't write like that.

Anyway, for this first `proper application', I have spoken briefly to the boss and was told to write in and enclosed my resume and some work samples.. so is an official cover letter necessary? Or something a bit less formal?

Argh..!! this is like 10 x harder to write than any articles I have written..

Maybe I shouldn't put too much pressure on myself.. after all, my cover letter 12 years ago was very basic (read: boring) yet I got the job. But then again, the job field is more competitive these days..

Brain is half dead.. and it's quite late now. Wonder whether I could finish it before bed time..

Jojo, please get well..

I feel sad.. because Jojo is looking so sad and is totally not himself.. :((

He moves slow and also responds slow.. he is so lethargic, as if he is ill. Even when I opened his cage door, he normally would leap out but now he would just remain motionless... looking at me with his sad eyes.

But thank God he still eats although slower than normal.

Maybe he is still hurting from the operation.. or could it be the castration also has a mental effect on him?? Jelly did not suffer at all after spaying.. or is it different for male dogs?

I feel like crying.. ppl including experts had told me neutering will do him good. But why is he like that? I really hope and pray that he will recover soon and be back and to his usual self.

Update Wednesday 11pm:
Jojo has recovered! :) When I came home and opened the automatic gate, he sneaked outside for his rendevous just like before. And when he came back, he was runing towards me and even leapt on me.

I'm so happy and relieved that he is back to his normal self.. but whether his behaviour will improve or not remained to be seen...

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Jojo now an `Eunuch'!

Jojo has been nuetered yesterday!

No, I didn't do it just because of his `problematic' behaviour lately, but had actually ponder upon it for some time.. I also had been asking other dog experts and vets and it seemed it was not a bad idea.

Besides the fact that it would help lesson his aggressive behaviour, neutering would also spare him the chance from getting testitcular or prostate cancer.

Dad, who is fond of Jojo, was also for neutering him and had been reminding me that we should do it soon. After all, Jojo is already 3 years old. Initially I worreid that he might be too old but the vets I consulted said it's ok..

So, since I had some time over this weekend, I thought I shouldn't delay this anymore... I brought him to the vet yesterday afternoon and the operation was performed in the evening. He stayed over one night.. but poor thing, I saw the crate he was put in and it was so small! The bigger ones were all occupied by even bigger dogs..

Anyway, when I went to collect him after church today, he looked ok.. but seemed a little passive and quieter than normal (perhaps the anaesthetic has not worn off completely?) I was a bit worried that after castration, he would turn into a `sissy'..

Jojo was also suffering from some skin wounds and it was good that they were looked into by the vet too..

I was told to let him rest in his crate for 3-4 days. And I have to make sure that he won't be disturbed by Jelly. Speaking of Jelly, she seemed to notice Jojo's absence and was looking out for him.. maybe she missed him.

Poor Jojo, looking quite pathetic and sad since he's returned home.. does he know that he has lost his `manhood'?

Now, I just hope and pray that Jojo would recover well and that with his hormonal drive reduced, his behaviour would also improve. But I am also a bit worried that if he becomes tamer, he would be bullied even more by Jelly the rascal!

Neutered dogs are prone to put on weight (like Jelly) but Jojo is still quite thin so hope that won't be an issue.

Hope he will be more cheerful soon... but only time can tell what's to become of Jojo the`eunuch' dog...