Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Something bugging our stomach

It was report in The Star, people with persistent diarrhea, constipation or bloated stomach should go for medical checks as they could be hosting a newly-discovered micro-organism or pathogen called Blastocystis, said world renowned Malaysian scientist Professor Dr G. Suresh Kumar.

He said it could lead to serious illness if not treated correctly. The possibility of it leading to cancer is being researched now but it can still cause other serious gastro-intestinal ailments. The pathogen could be passed to humans through animal faeces and was water-borne.

This news caught my attention since recently I suffered diarrhea after eating cooked food at Cambodia. My stomach purged for 3 days. Where on earth did this 'newly-discovered' creature came from. It just can't appear out of no where like alien and starts to invade us. There are just too many 'creatures' out there lurking somewhere to attack us. Something is not right affecting our mother nature nowadays.

Read the full story here

Memorable last month

December is always a significant month to all of us particularly since it is the very last month of the year. People have the tendency to reflect, review, reassess...however you name it, to see how that particular whole year was spent/invested/used.

For me this month means a lot more if not marks another significant milestone in my personal life as well as my family. I just recently passed my 35th year old mark and celebrated 6th year anniversary with my wonderful wife Soo Pei. So I guest there are more to reflect upon.

Well what can I say about 2008. Unavoidable there were some ups and downs. Overall things can be better (most of the time it is so) but yet not too bad either. One prominent fact is that my family have grown biologically with the addition of our little angle, Reanne. That will be our added priceless treasure we cherish this year from God besides our big little boy Ivan.

Got few new exposure and experience, not forgetting setback too. Yet, thanks to God for His gracious hands upon our life throughout this 2008.

Lord, we thank you for Your unfailing love, provision and protection for our family this entire year be it spiritually, financially and in health. We thank you for the new things You have started in our life and the old things You are pruning away. Lord, please continue to guide and lead us as we lean on You in this new and challenging year ahead of us. We declare for breakthroughs and victories as we move forth. In Jesus' name. Amen

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Long way up - snap shots

Port snap shot

Beach snap shots

New Gurney Drive snap shots

Long way up - the chronicle

This year Christmas day was celebrated a bit differently compared to previous year. I decided to bring the whole family including my parents and Silas' family for a long way up to Penang island for a holiday.

We started traveling on Christmas day itself to Malim Nawar, Perak - my mother's home town where my uncles still staying. We put a night at my uncle house before heading straight to Penang the following day. My uncles brought us that Christmas night for seafood feast at Tanjung Tualang which famous for their river big head prawn (Tai Tao Ha). We ate 2kg of big head prawn and 2kg of crab not forgeting also a fresh water fish (Sang Yue) personally caught by my uncle. The food was really good (unfortunately no photos available....to busy eating with both hands and handling the kids).

Traveling from
Malim Nawar (which just 30km to Ipoh) took us about 2 hours to reach Penang island. We headed first to George Town, Tanjung City Marina adjacent to the Penang-Butterworth Ferry Terminal. Stop a while and snap some photos here and there. Afterwhich we move on to Komtar area to search for hawker foods. We end up eating at Jalan Macalister. Foods were just ok but small in portion. Average RM3. Char Kui Tiao was RM4.

Next we drove to search for
Bukit Bendera (after manage to buy a detail map at Komtar). We managed to find it thanks with some helping hand from my dad which act as my navigator. Unfortunately we were just a bit late as the tram ticket was sold out. Disappointed we make a U-turn back to town but end up eating again at Jalan Air Itam hawker area (entrance road to Bukit Bendera). The duck meat soup noddle just caught our attention for a quick bite.

Without wasting time we buckle up and headed to our next
destination at Tanjung Bungah public beach area. How can we not go to the beach when already in the island. We lost our way after trying to a short cut but still able to reach the destination. Spent like an hour there to relax and more photo taking sessions. Ivan just like the beach and the sand.

Our last stop was having our dinner at New Gurney Drive hawker centre. Six of us ordered several kinds of foods like rojak, char kui tiao, prawn mee, fried oyster, popiah, wan tan mee (for Ivan), sotong kang kong and banana abong balik. With our stomach full but not really satisfied with the taste (maybe due to high expectation), we finally decided to head back to Malim Nawar about 8pm. Reaching my uncle's house about 10pm ending our day trip to Penang island.


The next following day (Saturday) we packed up and went home to Kajang stopping along Ulu Yam town for Loh Mee and visiting my grant aunt. Overall we have a enjoyable Christmas family traveling trip on a long way up.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Christmas?

Honestly this year Christmas was less 'festival' and celebrating to me. Things was pretty hectic along the week not to mention need to travel thousand of miles just few day before Christmas. Not forgetting having been rushing the Cambodia project matters to be ready before flying there for meeting. By the time I was back home on 23rd Dec (after 2 hours of flight delay) it was already quite late about 11pm. The next morning back to office for work again.

I was still being bug by diarrhea on that morning in as such have no mood to work. I decided to take MC but until I finished my Cambodia report. Well, I finally went home that Christmas eve at about 4.30pm just one hour before office hour for my so called half day MC.

That evening, Christmas eve celebration was being held at our church and I was on duty for the video crew. Things didn't turn out that well......not to the satisfactory level. First I was late and cause the other crew members to temporary struggle. Second, I was still rusty when handling one of the video camera. I did not really enjoy that night Christmas celebration. Frustrated again, tired, not satisfied and just wanting to go home and crash on the bed!

Many have blessed us and our children with lovely gifts that night. Unfortunately we did not return any.....since we did not managed to purchase any to share with. We feel quite bad about it. On the other hand, most of all I feel I have not really honor the true meaning of Christmas that night....Jesus, the Gift from God. Lord, I am sorry to have distracted on my so called 'duty' and 'responsibility' that I did not honor Your son Jesus for His birth that which gives me hope and joy to celebrate with daily. Blessed belated Christmas!!!

My 2nd trip to Cambodia

As I previously mentioned I was quite frustrated when the work trip to Cambodia was postponed to much later date......just few days too close to Christmas Day itself. We have to fly on Sunday (21st Dec) afternoon since earlier date was fully book and schedule to return on 23rd Dec. We took the one and only usual afternoon AirAsia flight (only one a day).

This time around, the flight was not really occupied (say about 60%) so plenty of vacant sit. Well, being trained by my other 'season traveler' colleague, four of us sit at the emergency door area. To be exact, roll 12 and 14 (they don't have no. 13 if you wonder typo error)........leg room bigger woh. And actually we need it. You see my Senior Group GM is a very tall person. By the way, also being trained by my season traveler colleague, we book with Express Boarding...meaning cut the queue and board first. Sound 'exclusive' hah, but with an additional price lah.

Our first day there was very much relax since it was a Sunday. By the time we reach our hotel it was already time for dinner. Unfortunately it was there my misfortune begins. The dinner that I ate that evening gives me few days of miserable stomach diarrhea....a.ka. Lao Sai (Part II). Somehow the squid that I ate cause indigestion cum diarrhea. It got worst on my 2nd night there. I hardly can managed to finish my dinner. Anyhow thank God, thing still manageable until I came back KL.

As usual, the time schedule we have at Cambodia was quite tight. Meeting and discusion all day. Gladly this round able to have a fast stop by at one interesting place, the local call it Russion Market...something like our Petaling Street/Chow Kit road (see photo below). They got plenty of goods sold there. Well, here are some of the photos I managed to capture for sharing...

Photo at the development site my company involved in.
River sand was being ship to the site area and later pump to fill the site.


Russian Market scenary. Cramp and plenty to see


Local morning market just below the hotel we stay

Workers busy sorting charcoal in the early morning for selling

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Wet luggage

I read of this open letter at The Star Online describing a group of traveler experienced wet luggage episode after boarding AirAsia flight at LCCT Sepang when heading to Guilin China. Click here to read the full story.

I personally have been boarding AirAsia flight at LCCT Sepang so I guess I know what actually happened. My last travel got me experience some drizzle when coming down from the plane going to the arrival hall. But the pilot was considerate enough to park the plane closer to the cover walkway.

In my opinion, though the terminal was designed and mainly mean for low cost carrier some form of basic facilities should be built in for the passenger safety, security and protection which should goes with their luggage. Malaysia Airport Berhad (MAB) who operator and run the terminal ought to consider this factor since low cost carrier is such in demand in this region. It definitely a win-win situation both for the operator and the carrier. In return both parties will boost the passengers volume and thus increase income. Hey the world is big enough for all to gain......not only one.

Bird Flu at Cambodia

Today I just discovered news about the detection of avian influenza at Cambodia via The Sun newspaper. Immediately it caught my attention.

Yesterday the Ministry of Health of Cambodia has announced a new confirmed case of human infection with the H5N1 avian influenza virus. The unfortunate victim is a male from Kandal province, the same place where the development project I am involving right now. That is really close. So for precaution sake, better stay off from chicken meat in my meal.

Further reading click here

Frust

My next upcoming 2nd trip to Cambodia is set to be this coming Sunday (21st Dec). Yeap....that's what I said SUNDAY! We are to return on 23rd Dec (Wed). I was so frustrated when I heard the news.

We suppose to go there this Thursday (18th Dec) and back the next 2 days on Saturday. This arrangement is not too bad but unfortunately no return flight ticket available on Saturday. All this due to last minutes decision and arrangement (that would be a long story to be mentioned). I have been working non-stop to get documents ready for the supposed Thursday flight. What a let down. But then....thank God I will be around on Christmas Eve with my loved ones.

This year I might have to miss 'Ko Tong' festival and not able to cherish the once a year 'Tong Yuen' which falls on Sunday.

:(

Trip to Genting

If I am not mistaken, both Pei and I have not been up to Genting Highland for about 5 years already. Wow, that long actually.

Well, we went there last Saturday to capture back some of the 'highland' memory together with my parents. Pretty pack that day up in that small little hill. Fondly we like to call it Uncle Lim's place.... since it entirely own by the late Lim Goh Tong and now by his son. We spent most of our time inside the First World theme park. Ivan was sure busy gazing around all the excitements. And Ivan have completed the 'conquering' of all the infamous 3 mountains i.e. first Fraser, Cameran and now Genting. Reanne on the other hand have not visited Fraser Hill yet. That would be another adventure coming soon.... I guess.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Double security

My office today have implemented finger imprint security access system for staffs to check-in and access the office main entrance. Previously was only using access card. But today will be both. Finger print for the main entrance while check-in and access card for internal entry to respective departments.

I guess it was a coincidence that The Star reported a latest Unisys Security Index survey found that 63% of respondents would opt for the fingerprint as their choice of identification, and 34% the use of PIN. All this possible due to the heighten effects from the Mumbai's attack. Just one more step to go is the introduction of CCTV surveillance system. Wow, that would by real deterrence.

I was jokingly told my colleague that the office seemingly looks like a lock-up centre.

Rear seat belt dilemma

As reported in The Star, parents with four children are confused as to how they are to seat all their children into the back of the car without being caught for overloading. “We cannot leave a child behind in the house when going out, neither can we afford to buy another vehicle to adjust to the new requirement on rear seat belts,” lamented trader Nordin Ahmad from Bandar Perdana Jasmin. Nordin, 44, drives an Iswara Aeroback and is worried how he, his wife and four children would fit into their car without running the risk of being stopped by a policeman.

Road Safety Department director-general Datuk Suret Singh has warned that motorists with more than three rear seat passengers could be fined for overloading.

There you go again. Creating new rules with more new problems unsolved. Worst still hanging like the dilemma faced by Nordin's family. To abide the law yet in the other hand broke another. Is there any better solution and/or suggestion rather than just give 'warning'. People just want to have a clear direction on how to go about their daily life. In there a clear and define written procedure together with guideline for people to follow? Don't say something yesterday and another today or who know what tomorrow. That's why Malaysian law maker is just too shortsighted. Hei.........so who will be in the unnecessary stress? Rakyat la :P

Rolling time

As shared earlier, Ivan favourite pass time when visiting my parents in-law is to 'practice' his drum skills with his Ah Kong. My father in-law have made three pairs of hand made drumsticks at the house. Ivan knows it and he knows where to find it.

This is one of the latest rolling session both of them have together.


video

Music trial class

Finally today we managed to bring Ivan to attend a music class. But not quite there yet. You see it's only a trial class given by the school for parents and their children to have a feel of it and of course part of the marketing strategies (lets not go unto that).

We have long intended to have Ivan attending some form of music class due to his keen interest into drums. If I am not mistaken Ivan has been 'drumming' before he turn 2 years old by banging things around using modified 'drumsticks' from his toys. My father in-laws even hand made him four pairs of drumsticks to promote his interest. Without fail every time when visiting his Ah Kong, he will look for his drumsticks to play with his grandfather.

To cut the story short, we decided to let him try out Yamaha Music Kids for children which are 3 1/2 years old. The lesson specially designed to make your child's initial encounter with music education fun and enjoyable. The course combines the dynamism of music with physical and mental activities to stimulate their musical senses and prepare them for the varieties of music education ahead. It's a 6 months programme that exposes children to fun with singing, fun with keyboards & listening, rhythm training and music appreciation. And it is a parent participation class as well.

So I was there to accompanied Ivan to attend the 30 minutes trial class along with five other kids and their parents. One thing very prominent is that, I was the only male daddy around. The rest was female mummy parents. How odd. Speak about torn among roses. The teacher straight away goes into a introduction lesson of sing along with actions, playing percussion instruments and story telling. Ivan quite distracted by the organ instrument in front of us (every participant will sit in front of an organ). Most of the time he will watch what the teacher do and say in front of the classroom. Unfortunately his was not active in participating the action instructed. Story telling time also he refused to sit in front of the class with the teacher unless I accompany him. New to the environment I guess.

Somehow he was chatty about his experience after finishing the class while we were heading home. He was also eager to share of his new found experience with mummy and my parents. Upon asking him whether he would like to go again, he would say yes. Ask whether he likes the class and he would say yes again. Well, I think we will give him a go ahead attending the lesson beginning the new class at Jan 2009. We'll see how it goes from there.

The why factor

His eyebrows shrunk as he frown. Even the lip also frown as he ask "Why......"

Of late that's what Ivan has been asking about almost everything that can be think of inside the little kid's brain. "Why that" Why this" "Why cannot" "Why huh?" For example our refusal on his certain request will then be ask why. Or ask us why when given him certain specific instruction to follow. Even more challenging was being asked why on our given answer to his earlier question. Quite a daunting task for a parents.

If we ignore him it will deprive his interaction and learning skills. If we try to answer him most often we afraid don't know how to answer his innocent questions or how best to answer his curiosity. So by God's grace and patience, lets hope mummy and I can prevail this why factor period with lots of answers. Oh Lord, how huh?

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Tomorrow electric car

Mitsubishi Motors Corp has forged ahead with its i MiEV electric car that is set to enter production next year. The original “i” car’s engine and fuel tank have been replaced by an electric motor drive system and lithium-ion battery pack. The electric car will go on sale in Japan next year with launches planned in the US and Europe markets in 2010.

The i MiEV electric car can be easily recharged via any household power point. Charging time is about seven hours with a household power point but if a special fast charger is used, the batteries can be charged up to 80% in 30 minutes.

Fully charged, the i MiEV can travel up to 160km and has a top speed of 140kph. I MiEV electric car had an operating cost that was one third of the petrol-powered version.

I wonder when can we grap hold of this new technology in Malaysia and once and for all silent the issue of petrol price increase?

Smiley decoded

The smiley face phenomena was reported today in The Star. A lot of people might have witness last evening unique sky. From the naked eyes, two stars and a crescent moon form a smiley look alike at the night sky.

The two stars was actually Venus and Jupiter which aligned in such a way together with the crescent moon to form that signature sign. This phenomena happen every 5 years. So for those who missed it, you got to wait till 2013.

From The Star.

Smiley in the air

This is unbelievable. In fact not what I ever seen before. There was a clear 'smiley' face in the night sky.

I doesn't know about it until mummy came home....late from work and mentioned it. She insisted for me to check it out and capture photo since it was so unique. I guess I know now why after seeing it. The matter of fact is that I received call from my aunt informing me about it. My dad also received call. A lot of people are excited about it. As if the sky is really smiling back at us. Or maybe it was God Himself giving us a bit of cheers. What ever it is, it sure an interesting night. My whole family together with my parents, Silas, Rachel and Sarah did came out to witness it. What a cool night.