Friday, September 30, 2005

April Fool 2004

Last year, 3 of us decided to pull a fantastic April Fools joke on the managers and some colleagues. We kidnapped some soft toys and other paraphelia and sent threatening photos via email to the owners and asked for ransom.

Here are some of the photos:
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This colleague had some Winnie-the-Pooh toys for some project she was working on so we tied them up, ignoring their cries for help and sent this picture to her.

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This one didn't even realise her coat was missing from her chair until almost the end of the day.

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This was a metal model of a plane on another colleague's desk. He was baffled as to who and how we got hold of it since his office is on a different floor with "tighter" security. My colleague and I had to pretend we were looking for him after work hours, sat at his desk until the other colleagues looked away then we made a grab and dash. No one ever suspected.

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This one, she obviously didn't need to use her stationery until past lunch hour.

All in all, everyone collected their "loot" within two days except one. He thought our email was a junk mail and even though we sent it twice to him, he never realised his slippers were missing.

BUT! The best BEST ones were done right after all the managers had left. Unfortunately I had to run off for some appointment so I wasn't part of the fun. However, this had caused a rukus the next morning with the secretaries flaming and calling the security to check the CCTV to see who the culprits were. Apple-polishers quickly took digital shots to "show my boss the mess before we cleaned up".

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This manager had left for an overseas trip at that time but one of his staff called him and told him that his computer and workspace was totally trashed and that the head of security was up there, trying to figure out who was the culprit. He freaked out, especially being miles away!

(This also brings to mind when we first moved into this new office and were working on some Lord of the Rings stuff, we put a sign outside his door that said "The Balrog is IN/OUT". He was only upset as to why he was called the Balrog when the rest had "cooler" names.)

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This manager comes in work at 9 plus so by the time he was about to reach, the tape had been cleared. Again, another colleague called him and told him the same story as above and he panicked, saying he was already nearby and would immediately look into it.

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THIS one... quite a grand one, was done on our Executive Director's door. It was fantastic but I came by when everything was taken down. The secretary was livid and being extremely unpleasant about the whole thing, kicked up a massive fuss which exploded through the entire office floor and summoned the head of security up to take a look at it.

The funny thing was, when the ED came to the office and was told about it, he asked us for a photo of it since he missed seeing it and also asked for the photos of the other 2 managers' desks to send to them as they missed it too! I actually feel a tinge of pity for the secretary because she must have felt so stupid after that.

(We called his office "The Tower of Mordor" when we first shifted in. He left it there until it dropped off years later.)

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The General Manager actually saw the taping of the ED's room when he left but didn't realise HIS door would also be taped! His managers took photos of it to show him but he merely laughed and also said he regretted not seeing it before it was taken down. I think he gave a thumbs up to the culprits... :)

(His office was named "Saruman's office" since he was in "conspiracy" with Saruman in the Tower of Mordor).

These were some of the most memorable things that has happened here. Too bad three of these managers have left together with their sense of humour. I can't imagine the existing ones would be able to accept this kind of jokes.

Anyways, what's left of our Lord of the Rings effort now is that we have 3 meeting rooms with the name of Shire, Gondor and Rivendell. Left on it's own devices, they would have christened Room A, B and C.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Humper, the Dog

While I wait, let me tell you of a curious incident of a dog in the night.

When we first shifted in, there was this stray dog roaming the neighbourhood. We tried to be friendly to him but he ended up jumping on KS leg and humping it. He wasn't very happy when we tried to push him away. Anyways, we decided to christen him Humper.

A couple of weeks ago, one of those nights when KS was working late and returned home past midnight, he spotted Humper and made a stop to pat him. After getting out of the car, he squatted near Humper and waved to him to step nearer. Humper slowly neared him without wagging his tail. After a minute of patting him, KS tried to stand up but the dog immediately put both his paws on his lap, with his fangs dangerously close to his face.

KS started to panic. He got up slowly anyway and the dog did what he was known for. Humped his leg. When KS tried to step away, the dog growled. THEN, KS knew he was in deep trouble.

Inching towards the passenger side of his car, he opened the door, intending to jump in and shut the door on the dog. However, the intelligence of Humper cannot be underestimated. He immediately jumped into the car before KS could!

After much persuasion, the dog was tricked into stepping out of the car so KS made a lunge for it. He managed to sit but as he was trying to pull the car door close, the dog again put both his paws on his lap, this time with his mouth on his thigh. A single snap would have warranted us a childless couple forever.

Frantically, KS thought of calling me to save him but decided Humper would attack me too. So, carefully, he pushed Humper's nose until he was able to pull the door shut just as he made a snap.

Safely inside the car, he looked out and saw the dog circling the car as a hungry shark would of a leaking raft. In the end, he clambered over to the driver's seat and drove away.

He swears he will never ever touch Humper again. As for me, two dog bites (one was from his dog, nonetheless) is enough for me. I'll stick to cats, thanks.

Die for Work

I don't understand it! KS will be pulling out his wisdom tooth tomorrow morning and right this very moment, he's dragging his office PC into his car so that while he rests at home, he will be able to do his work!

So here I am, again at past 8pm, waiting for him to pick me. Should have brought my book. At least I have Beethoven's 9th Symphony to accompany me.

Ironically, the book I'm currently reading, The Street Lawyer by John Grisham, talks about how this lawyer's marriage has come to an end as both he and his wife were chasing their career. And he's come to the realisation that one's career/work isn't worth his life. Sigh... it's just a story.

All By Myself...

I have 2 days to be all by myself... without KS and Jan. Faced with being alone, I'm throwing out some tentacles and see if anyone wants to have a bite with me this Thurs and Fri. Otherwise, I'll just go home to a good bowl of Ramen. Hmmm... on second thoughts, I'd like to curl up with my John Grisham book with that bowl Ramen.

I don't understand how people can eat alone, especially when eating out.
KS does it all the time. It's strange and it's suffering. I've tried it by taking a book with me and people stared. I'd rather skip my meal, eat a couple of biscuits or cook instant noodles before sitting there all by myself, waiting for my meal and then gobbling it down quickly.

Now I have to go for lunch. Even if my colleague has to rush to get back to work, at least she'll accompany me for that few minutes.

Monday, September 26, 2005


I’ve grown up surrounded with detective books. I can’t remember what the title of those books were but it shows how you, as a detective, are supposed to set “traps” around the house like sprinkle some powder under your window so that if anyone breaks in from there, you’d see their footprints. Or, place a book on the table, remember the page number you left it open at and lay a single strand of hair across it.

It even tells you how to walk around your neighbourhood by showing you a map and asking you to decide which paths you should be taking to avoid all the dangerous places. Or how to be suspicious of your neighbour should there recently have been a bank break in if they start buying expensive things suddenly. Or if you know your neighbour always lived alone and you suddenly see her washing guys clothes and yet never see a man outside the house, be on the alert.

Yes, all this I have committed to memory just from those few books. It was mainly pictorial so it was a good read and an educational one. It was a series and had a bright blue cover…

Anyways, it started a huge interest in detective work, I’ve indulged myself in tv series, movies and books of that genre since then. Along the way, I’ve picked up habits which never occurred to me how paranoid I had become.

I’d never throw away my credit card slips. If I do, I’d tear it up carefully so that my credit card numbers are stripped into 4 or more pieces, then thrown into different wastepaper baskets and ensured I never threw all my rubbish out at the same time. Then I started doing it for my phone bills too. After all, one can get my phone number and my friends contact numbers if they were to find it in one piece!

It was only recently when my bills started piling as I got lazy in tearing them and distributing them in different bins when KS asked me why I did such a thing in the first place. Then it struck me. Who on earth would want to dig up my trash to find out my purchases for the month of April this year? Or to find out whom I had made calls to in the last 2 months from my cell phone?

After that, I have finally been able to throw my bills in one piece. It’s not easy but I must be strong and continue to try.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Bloody Dentist

I am so so angry. Remember I had to operate my wisdom tooth out earlier this year? The reason why I did that was because Dr T, my now ex-dentist, took an xray and said the tooth in front of it had a cavity due to the wisdom tooth impacting it. He rushed me and made me pull out the wisdom tooth which I did with a specialist.

At the specialist, the Dr took a full dental xray and discovered the second molar in front of my wisdom tooth showed an internal cavity which needed immediate attention.

So I went back to Dr T who did my root canal. At my last appointment, Dr T told me to come back so that he can patch up the 1st tooth.

Since his services were exorbitant, I was recommended by my colleague to try another dentist just near my office. So this morning I went to pay him a visit to patch up that tooth.

What I discovered:
1. There is no cavity on that tooth. Meaning, I never needed to rush pulling out my wisdom tooth in the first place.
2. The root canal was done quite badly as he didn't reach right to the bottom of my roots. This new dentist (I don't even know his name) was very frank but he feebly tried to cover up for Dr T by saying it is a difficult case and he probably did his best. I retorted his best would have been to recommend me to a specialist to get it properly done instead of charging me as much as pulling out my wisdom tooth for a botched up job!

So now I am to go to another specialist, an Endodermist or whatever... to redo the root canal. And you know specialists fees are like what... Blast that Dr T!

Friday, September 23, 2005


Oh, the verdict of my cake from the whole company was to get rid of the icing. Hahaha... I'm glad for that as I don't particularly enjoy making the icing either.

It's nice that KS's company (in particular, one colleague) has been so supporting of me with this baking thing. One colleague who was on leave demanded that one piece be kept for her today and if she likes it, she may place orders for Raya! *cross fingers*

Oh, and the company will put consider my cakes for their monthly birthday celebrations. What a fantastic bunch of people!

Thursday Breakdowns

Last Thursday, Jan called me up at nearly 6pm and her first words were:

"Jo, I'm in deep shit"

Her car had suddenly overheated but she was at a petrol station so she wasn't blocking anyone. I made my way there and reached her in an hour, after the AAM had temporarily solved her problem long enough for her to drive back home.

Yesterday, I was about to sleep when suddenly, I got a call from KS. HIS car broke down along the very same highway but right after hitting the toll. His car had successfully inched right after the bar came down, which was fortunate otherwise the bar would have caused some damage. Luckily it was late, nearly midnight, and there weren't many cars and no one was stuck behind him. AAM came to his rescue and now he's fixing the problem at our mechanic.

I won't call myself superstitious but come next Thursday, I ain't gonna drive.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

They always get the fun...

This invoice was accidentally sent to my ex department. Looks like someone in my company just procured some 1000 pieces of floppy dicks. Wonder what they do with them. Floppy ones? And going for cheap too, no wonder! Only RM0.20 per piece! Hurry hurry! Grab this promotional price for a limited time only!

Monday, September 19, 2005


As from 2:40pm, I am officially resigned from my current workplace. I have been crapping bricks the whole weekend just thinking of how to do it properly.

Doubtful thoughts crept into my mind, "Am I doing the right thing? What if my new workplace doesn't work out?" so I consulted my one and only colleague who knows about my leaving and she sternly pointed her finger towards my boss' room and said one word, "GO!".

My boss of course was shocked but she said she understood. Didn't even ask me why I am leaving but I guess she knows. Didn't even bother about negotiating. She just asked me to wrap things up and not tell anyone yet at this point since it can be demoralising for my team as it is the peak period.

So yeah, 3 months or less down the line, I will be moving on to a new job in town.

Farewell Bash

There has been some controversy in the papers lately about a RM5mil farewall bash to a Director General. He denies it and now is sulking that he won't attend any of the parties planned for him yada yada yada...

Today he says, "We've only spent RM220,000 so far!" Oh, and I like this quote with regards to one of their upcoming meetings in Langkawi which was also touted as part of his nationwide farewell party:

"Instead of dining by the beach, the officers would have dinner at the Aishah Mosque after tahlil prayers. A source said this would save the department at least RM9,000." - The Star, 16 Sept 05.

Save RM9K? How must is the total bill in the first place? And this is just for one meal! And i
f no noise was made about this misusing of taxpayers money, would they have shifted their dinner location?

And spent only RM220K so far? Hello, we Malaysians are all tightening our belts due to high levels of inflation and you think RM220K for your farewell so far is a reasonable amount? Sure, if you want to compare it to the reported RM5mil it's considered small but hey, take that amount on it's own and it's still ridiculous!

Okay, I'm having a black Monday. Today is the day I do something important too but am too anxious about doing it right.

Boiling Monday

My department has 2 fax machines to be used for customers to fax in their orders and basically for our own use. Previously, this now ex-colleage of mine refused to let people use the fax and we used to make fun of her, saying she was too rigid. After all, this is company property and those who wanted to use it didn't really abuse it for personal faxes.

So now that my colleague is gone, it's now free for all to use and we get people from the IT department to use amongst others. Now the problem is, the companies that they fax to use the fax number (found at the top of our fax to them) and junk us with quotations and promotions. Dell used to send us one every week and the pile slowly became a hill. I had to send them a fax to ask them to remove that fax number from their list. When they didn't, I had to call them up and give them a slightly difficult time.

Anyways, today, there was this tremendously long fax, about past 15 pages of a quotation from this IT shop in Sungai Wang. The fax got stuck at page 4 and repeated it for the next 13 pages in a continuous form. It sure ran our fax paper out. Talk about wastage!

So I called up the guy who faxed it in, a Mr Khoo and asked him where he got the fax number from. He was absolutely rude, "Fax number can get from anywhere wat. SO? So now, what you want to do?!". By then my temper had risen, "Don't fax to this number again!" I bellowed. I asked who he is dealing with in my company but he just kept quiet for half a minute and then hung up on me.

Immediately I hit the redial button, "Eh! What you want now? So? Talk lah, talk. Say lah..You don't want to get any faxes, you disconnect the fax lah!" and he kept quiet again while I asked him again who he was dealing with. In the end, I just ended it with an empty threat, "Your shop is in Sungai Wang right, I'll come look for you" and proceeded to slam down the phone.

My colleagues immediately surrounded me to calm me down. So funny. I'm thinking of faxing him back his long fax but that will only create more loss of paper plus the fact that we'll have to pay for the faxing. Grrr...

By the way, the name of the shop is SK Systems, Lot T014 Sg Wang Plaza H/P number 016 392 6012, fixed line 03 9101 2175 fax 03 9102 4269.

Friday, September 16, 2005

Resignation Letter = Magnet of Opportunities

Two of my friends who are resigning (not necessarily from my work place) have been given offers or attractive options. One who is a journalist is being asked to go to LA, all expenses paid, to catch the premiere of Zorro and interview the cast and director on the date she plans to leave the company! Of course her boss still doesn't have a clue to her planned resignation.

The other has been offered countless opportunites right after she made up her mind about her career path. Life is ironic. I'll just wait and see what happens when I resign!

Church Building

Last week we talked about our thoughts about the new church building. We sure had a lot of different ideas and points of view although they were not all contradicting.

What struck me was how 2000 over people who attend the church will have such different expectations. Just from the few of us that night, we had varying thoughts about how it would look like. I'm sure many will be left disappointed when the time comes to reveal the building.

Jan had the most sensible comment, that the building itself is a dilapitated shed but people would refer/recommend it just like how we Malaysians would normally recommend a good place for say, laksa. What's important is what goes on in it, not of what the building would finally look like.

As another CG member said, the money bit is not important but who will be the ones to contribute their time and effort to run it once it is up.

All very well said. There was a brochure printed earlier this year on how the Dream Centre would look like but I didn't scrutinize it, which I am glad I didn't because it would then set expectations.

Of course, giving to the building fund until I live in debt is not the whole idea of giving. That's just downright d'uh.
I just wish I could spare more than what I have right now. I suppose giving loads of cash isn't the role I'm to play in this building.

Burning Bridges

I've learnt from an ex colleague of mine to never ever burn your bridges. When she left the company, she went up to the Graphics Manager, who happens to be one of the owner's sons and told him point blank that she has always hated working with him and well, basically insulted him - right in front of everyone.

So when the time came when she was fired from her subsequent jobs, there was a possibility of her to come back here but she didn't want to. Not because she already burnt her bridges but I guess she had enough of working here. But that's not the point. If ever there comes a time of desperation, things have a funny way of coming back to you.

I'm writing this now because something will happen to me and because I MAY have burnt bridges, things may not be easy for me in the future. Oh well, I'll just wait and see.

Car Conversation

An example of how we try to keep ourselves amused during our hour-long journey to work:

"You know our planned trip to Canada in 2 years time?"


"Let's time it to coincide with a U2 concert there."

"Like that we might as well go to Australia! Nearer!"

"Do they perform there?."

"When they release a new album, which will probably take 4 years at least for their next one, they usually go on a world tour. Oh wait, in that case, why don't we wait until they have a concert nearer here. Maybe like in Penang."

"They'd sooner go to Kelantan."

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Set in Motion

Things are already happening for me to set the wheels in motion for a change in my life. I promise I will blog about this next week but change is always scary as comfort zones have already been set up and roots deep enough to cause bleeding when it is pulled out.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Kuching Photos

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Here are some photos I took in Kuching, like four months ago. This used to be the local magistrate but now it's been turned into a Visitors Centre. I love the colonial look of this building.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Saying the Darnest Things

We were talking about what kids say to make grown ups embarrassed and I remembered the time when my family and I went to visit a grandaunt (who is younger than my father, by the way, so we call her Aunt Helen) and her husband. My granduncle was some top guy running this swanky hotel in KL back then and had invited my parents for dinner at the hotel. We hardly meet this couple and this was the only time I remembered meeting them (they're now migrated to Canada).

I remembered having steamed fish since my dad always said it was an expensive dish whenever we ate out and we had a private dining room to ourselves. I can't remember much of the conversation because I guess I was too young to understand what they were talking about or didn't have a clue to whom they were talking about. But I've always had this awe for this high-flying aunt because of the little I know of her.

After dinner, we were invited to drop by their Penthouse (new word to my vocabulary then) but before that, we ladies made a pit stop to the loo. My youngest sister Jan was below six years old then and so my Mum brought her into the stall with her.

Now, I'm a self-conscious person and would pee really quietly so that, well, it's not so loud lah. Mum also was quiet in her stall but my Aunt Helen had no qualms about making enough noise to echo the four walls of the loo.

Suddenly, Jan said loudly, "Mummy, what is that SOUND?"

We all burst out laughing and Mum had to mumble some apology about kids saying the darnest things.

Jan swears she doesn't remember this incident at all. Oh, but I do, Jan, I do. All stored under "Stories to
blackmail my sisters".

Monday, September 12, 2005


Martin-Luthers ("I had a dream..."): Clothes which you still keep in your closet in hope that you would be able to fit in them one day.
- Readers Digest September 05 Malaysian Edition

Of cakes, Cuban Dory and F1

I baked a butter cake for my Mum-in-law on Friday but the cake didn't turn out well. In fact, it didn't bake properly and not being experienced in this matter, we threw the whole cake away. Now everyone tells me I should have just chucked it back into the oven for a second round of baking.

Blarrggghh.... I just feel so embarrassed because it just shows how little I know about baking and here I am, trying to sell people my "experiments"! Hahaha!

Anyway, I had enough time on Saturday morning to bake another one which turned out okay. So all went well.

To celebrate Mum-in-law's birthday, we went to eat some Cuban food (yep, in Melaka!) and it was really nice. I ate up the salad in my starter! Everything including raw onions except the slice of lemon. Of course, the salad bit was the size of half my fist but STILL! An achievement for a meatatarian!

Anyways, the main course was a perfectly baked dory
fillet (no, not the blue one. Nemo has forever spoilt how the actual fish looks like) which sliced easily into moistened flakes, topped with oozing cheese and sprinkled with fresh whole olives. It was really nice and the Pinot Grigio was really good too. My first time tasting Pinot Grigio by the way, very nice. I actually might prefer it to Chardonnay now. So saideth she who had one glass.

There was promise of a Cuban "performance" which in the end we figured as the old VCD they played on the TV so we left right after prolonging our dessert by going over to see how Cuban cigars were being rolled. Those things, it took the lady about 5 minutes to creat a RM45 stick. Wow, I'd like to be able to do that. But I could see the skill required to cut the tobacco leaves into the right shape, to roll it and know when this or that part isn't compact enough.

Then we went home and opened a bottle of pink champagne, specially brought in from Perth. Also very nice.

Oh, when my Mum-in-law expressed to Dad-in-law that she wanted to bring back two bottles of champagne when she was in Perth, he immediately discouraged her, saying that the bottles would be too heavy to bring back. Puzzled, she insisted that she would bring them back anyway so he asked her where she was going to find the space in her luggage to fit such a big bottle.

"But they're the same size as the normal wine bottles we usually bring back"

"NO! Champagne bottles are the really big ones! Don't you watch F1?"


How do you sell something that you have in stock of over 10K pieces, with prices most people wouldn't pay at and your bosses tell you that you can't reduce a single cent?

I wish I could burn those dang things once and for all so that the auditors won't have to ask year in, year out what I plan to do to reduce stocks in the Warehouse.

Friday, September 09, 2005


Recently there have been many challenges for KS and I in terms of our Christian ministries. Leaders who were previously on fire for God now defeated into tough coals of stubbornness, broken relationships and folks who have been avoiding from coming to CG just to name a few.

But just in the last 2 hours, I am hearing good news again of prayers being answered for a couple of CG members. Opened doors of opportunities and broken bondages in a timely manner. And also a stray sheep is now wanting to come back to the herd, which answered MY own prayers.

What a way to start off the weekend!


You know those chain mails in your inbox? I hardly read them anymore but today I just opened one which said "Chinese Proverb". It talks about how money can buy you stuff like a bed but not sleep etc. Then, it goes on saying that I must send it to 20 people because of this person didn't send it and he had bad luck etc. Oh, it says it's a Chinese proverb that has started in Netherlands, gone around the world eight times and sent by a missionary in South Africa. Yeah, right.

Anyways, enough of the bull. I was just thinking about when I was in Form 1, I got one of them chain mails. I actually photocopied 20 copies and slipped them onto the parked cars windshields and put them into mailboxes as I was walking to my friend's house.

Hey, where's that fortune I was promised 16 years ago??

No More Swearing

Speaking of swearing, the Malaysian courts are going to table this in the Parliament that those making statements need not swear in beforehand. This means that the burden of proof now solely rests on the evidence.

When I read my Perry Masons, he always relies on the witnesses/accused (you can tell I still know nuts about these court terms even after reading Perry Masons and John Grishams) to tell the truth since they are oath. Hence, that part was never quite believable or relevant in this day and age.

I always wondered who aethists would swear to and also doubt if criminals really fear God more than they fear going to jail!

So now, our local CSIs will have a lot more work and evidence to proof. Coming up - CSI:Klang Valley. By the way, one of my pastors work in the Malaysian Chemistry Dept (I am told it's related to CSI-like work) and he's unassuming and a really funny chap. I haven't had the chance to ask him anything CSI related yet.

Swear Words

A couple of weeks ago, the radio station was asking listeners to share what alternate swear words they use and it got me thinking of mine too.

The most unusual one was one my friends and I coined in Form 4, during the History class. History, being one of my least favourite subjects, was always a dull period and we would often chat at the back of the class, much to the bane of my teacher! Anyways, she came to the subject of old cities and mentioned "Baluchistan" and because it sounded like a swear word to us, we pounced on it and gleefully peppered our conversations thereafter with it, stressing on the first two syllables.

I haven't used that word in ages but it still makes me smile to remember those good ol' days. I'm sure my history teacher won't share such fond memories though.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

I want the snow off Everest

Real scenario:

Candidate: I want my job to pay at least RM2800, have a company car and lots of travelling. Not local ah, I want international travelling plus holiday.

Interviewer: Er... you've never worked before, have you?

Candidate: No.

Interviewer: And why is it that you think you would be able to get all these?

Candidate: Because I'm a graduate mah.

Interviewer: Which uni?

Candidate: UPM

Folks at UPM, who on earth is advising you guys to ask for the moon?

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Faith Stretching

Soon, my church will be shifting to a new place because of the sheer size of its growing congregation. From a single celebration on Sundays, it has multiplied to four, two on Saturdays and two on Sundays. Hence, pastors would have to give their sermons four times per weekend, which is quite taxing for anyone, let alone a visiting pastor! Plus, our ministries are growing and there is a evident lack of space for them.

So now we are going to shift and the deed is already signed for the piece of property nearby from where we currently are. A church building fund has been set up and normally, churches would look for help from both internal and external sources. For us, we are going to only look internally ie from the church members. And the amount is not small.

It's scary to ask for such an amount and those who do not share the same vision as what this new place can and will be, will only have doubts and may in fact leave the church. But this is what I believe is a process of refining fire. I've heard of people in the church who say, "I think my calling is to earn a lot of money so that I can GIVE!" and I sincerely hope that they will step up to their calling for this one. If the amount is divided equally amongst the numbers who attend the celebrations, it is still a very large amount, one which when pooled together all our resources, KS and I still won't be able to achieve the amount for one person. What a hopeless feeling!

Hence, our faiths will be really stretched for this one. But I really do believe that if you honour Him, you will be honoured in return, sometimes monetarily, sometimes in other means of blessings. Not to say that I should expect something in return but it's happened a couple of times when that step of faith is taken. This, I will share with you some other day when things come to pass.

However said, yes, I believe it but the acting out in faith is another struggle for me. It is always a case of, "What if I don't have enough for myself? When can I get that pair of shoes then? What if an emergency happens?"... a lot of "What ifs" which will never be quenched. This is why it's called walking out in faith.

Yet another odd marriage

News today says this 71 year old great grandma (who comes from China) just married this Malay man of 40 years old in Singapore.

Clicking back my jaw in place, I further read that the groom "intends to start a family with her". Now that's just bizzare. I hope he realises women don't actually give birth after menopause.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Citibank - BAH!

Never EVER apply for a credit card with Citibank. I don't think I've voiced my grieveances over my blog before but my fresh call to them is just the last straw.

When I applied for the card five years ago, they had asked me for a photo so that they could scan it on the front of the card. After going through the difficulty in getting a passport sized photo, I happily handed in my application form.

A few weeks later, they sent me my card, without the picture. So I called them up to find out what happened to my photo if it wasn't used. They said they would send me the one with the photo. So I waited several weeks before frustration got me to call them again. This time, a different person took my call and upon explaining this to him, he assured me the card would arrive in a week and the reason why they sent me the first card was because they were "eager" for me to have a card first while they made my actual one. What bull!

In between, there were many slip ups which led me to call them and give them a piece of my mind and in the end, I decided not to continue using the credit card. After all, I've got another one that is free for life and has excellent service. So last year, I sent them a fax saying I wanted to cancel all my cards with them and they called me back and begged me to hold on to the cards as they will waive my annual fees for two years.

I thought, why not and just in case my other card doesn't work overseas, I have a spare to back me up. Then in July, I got a statement saying I owed them for this year's annual fees. I immediately called them and told them I was promised for two years annual fees. The customer service told me it was only stated as free for one year in their system so I got fed up and said I wanted to cancel my cards for good now.

I wrote them the fax and faxed it in on 8 August 05. There was no news on this for the whole month and today, I get another statement with the same annual fees being charged, impounded with late payment AND finance fees!

Keeping my voice as pleasant as I could, I called them up just now and explained the whole story all over again. The girl told me that yes, they received the letter at the end of August and that I will need to wait one week before the cards are cancelled. That was fine with me.

Until she said, "But M'am, you are liable to pay the annual fees once it is already billed to you". That's when I exploded and got really harsh with her and also demanded to know why their fax only spews out faxes three weeks later!

Oh, and my contact numbers which have been changed for years with me updating them each time I call, still remain as the old numbers in their system.

If they demand me to pay up the annual fees for cards which I have tried to cancel again and again and which I have never used for years now, I'm going to write to the papers.

After 9 Years!

I've known L for 11 years and I've known M for 10. Although we all went to the same college, they didn't know each other until some mutual friends brought them together 9 years ago. I suspected sparks were flying between them but the match was highly unlikely besides being of different race, religion and backgrounds. Afraid she might be hurt, I told her "No go" and though she listened, I could still sense that there was just that little bit of liking between the two of them.

Later, I felt really bad. After all, who am I to tell them they shouldn't be together? Still, years went on and snatches of conversations with M revealed that contact between them were still on, even though they studied in different countries then. Even when L came back, M would mention meeting up with L on occasion.

Today, I am greatly relieved and tickled to know that they have been going out for 9 months now! And I had invited both of them to my wedding in Feb AND seated them together too. Now, how was that for being intuitive?

Back from Kampung

It was a great and fun time back home in Alor Star and now I'm back to the grindstone. One thing that made me realise hanging out with the two kids is that you need 2 adults per kid to take shifts looking after them. Boy, I was frequently wiped out of all energy just taking an afternoon to play with them at a play park.

We also bid farewell to some friends who are leaving Malaysia for good. I'm sure they must be really sad to leave so many friends that they have made here but also glad to look forward to being closer to their grandchildren.

Throughout the whole 3 days there, Mum also cooked loads of great food. Just seeing her almost effortlessly whip up huge meals made me wish I had the interest in cooking as much as I do baking. Oh, we baked 2 cakes on Sunday too and again, the speed of things that my Mum does it makes me realise I've been taking waaay too long to make one simple cake. Ah, never mind, I've got another butter cake request this Friday so I'll try my Mum's half hour timing to complete mixing one cake.

It's also not fun to be back at work. The usual, "I want this by tomorrow morning on my desk" requests gets at me the minute I step in. Sigh...

Friday, September 02, 2005

Home Sweet Home

Jan and I are leaving on a bus at the stroke of midnight to go HOME! If the bus driver is good and follows the speed limit (50-50 chance), we will reach Alor Star at around 6am. Otherwise, if he drives like there's a pontianak chasing him from the back, we'll reach at 4am.

My sis and her family are there and I can't wait to spend time with them (although I must say it won't be a time of much sleep for me) but how often?? Ah, I'll take the next weekend in Melaka to recuperate.


You might notice that all my photos usually come in one splurge. That's because I like to take photos then download them later all at once.

Anyways, here is my handprint (bottom 2nd from left) on a pewter tile. It's a bit smudged, perhaps people have been touching it since it's one of the most accessible ones. Once you reach 5 years of being employed in this company, you get to have your hand print on the wall in the Visitor Centre for all to see.

The one on the left of my handprint belongs to one of the owner's sons. He's a designer and is now in charge of designing new products. The one on my right resigned just after he got his handprint on the wall. He was in Finance. And the one above mine belongs to my ex makan buddy who left after she gave birth. So, my handprint is surrounded by people who have already left (I have to discount the first one because it's his flesh and blood).

Soon, my palm print will also join the majority... soon.

Of Spiders...

There's a German lady who tried to kill some spiders in her home and ended up torching her whole house. See here.

Reminds me of the time we tried to kill one monster in the house. Now that I've downloaded the photo of it, here is how it looks like. I don't know why the head of the creature is shiny yellow but you can imagine how big it is for Malaysian standards.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Charlie aka Goldfish

Here's how my new cat looks like, Charlie. Here, he's thinner than he is now since he eats eats and eats. He only greets us in the mornings when we open the door to go to work, begging for food. Sometimes, he decides not to grace us with his presence, depending on his mood.

I still miss Jay though. No other cat can replace him. :(

Sundry Shop

Yesterday was our Independence Day and as much as I'd like to have celebrated it just sleeping the whole day and maybe watch some DVD, I had to be dragged out at 11am and reach Bandar Utama (where 1 Utama is) at noon for a sort of brainstorming meeting.

Upon reaching the area, it was jam packed with cars trying to get in the already crowded parking lots at 1 Utama. Thank goodness I didn't need to go there so we managed to ease out of the jam and into the housing area.

Anyways, since we needed to buy some lightbulbs, no way were we going to any of the shopping malls on the very day everyone decides to create an economic upturn, we ended up going to a quaint little sundry shop in PJ.

These shops are normally dinghy with a musky smell of flour and rice, ceiling high shelves packed and stacked with an assortment of household items, narrow passageways that are strewn with larger household items, creating an obstacle course should you want to venture to the back of the shop. Doors and window (if any) are used as means to prop brooms of various uses and other long objects. I always am amazed at the stocks they carry - they have absolutely EVERYTHING!

Here's the test. This lady stepped in the shop while we were there and she proceeded to ask the tow keh (owner), "Do you have this...?" and he answered without hesitation even before she could complete her question, "YES, we have!".

A disbelieving look came upon her face and she repeated, "No, do you have this particular brand Tops (I can't remember the name) for soap powder?"

"GOT! Which colour packaging you want? The blue or the green one? 1 or 2 packs?"

Maybe next time I should ask for a pack of dried dragons meat and hear him say "GOT! Which type you want? Sesame seed flavoured or smoked?"

To Kill a Mockingbird

Have you ever had this deep desire to own something, held back for a while to make sure you really really want it and when you finally get it, you chuck it aside?

Well, you know how I've been having the urge to read these days? I've finally landed myself a copy of "To Kill a Mockingbird" after almost a year of wanting to buy the book (I nearly got it at the warehouse sale last weekend). And what do I do with the book? I read the first page and decided I don't really want to read it right after re-reading my 4th Harry Potter.

Plus I've got a timeline to it since it's a borrowed book. Sigh. Someone convince me it's a good book before I return it without going past page 5!