Field day at the Japanese Garden

Well, here’s a maiden voyage – me and my new canon Eos 350D ūüôā Initially I wanted to go to the botanical gardens, however, I thought the better of it since it was a little far away and I really wasnt in the mood for travelling. I thought I’d just drop by the Japanese garden since its just a short distance from my home.

I’m pretty pleased with the turnout of the pictures – its pretty sharp and fast unlike my older camera. And honest to goodness, I didnt even photochopped these.

Yay! gonna get a new camera!

I’m gonna get my new camera! I’m gonna get my new camera! I’m gonna gonna gonna gonna get my new camera! Today! Laa laa laa laa laa!

Mum loaned me some moolah a couple of days back. She must have noticed me moaning about thinking of ways to save up. I promised her that I’ll pay her back again. But mum insisted that I write up an official I.O.U to her. I think she has ideas thanks to watching this show

Image hosted by

Is a funny show which I enjoyed immensely. I think its almost comparable to “something’s gotta give” except that in I do, I do, is a story about a delivery guy, falling in love with a career woman, who rejects him which stumbles with an almost perfect guy.

In one of the scene career woman falls in love with the almost perfect guy who gets beaten up because he was the guarantor for a friend who couldt pay up and she finally gave the loansharks some money and he wrote up an I.O.U on his computer to her.

Anyway, speaking about shops, I’ve came across some which I will never, ever patronise if I can help it.

No 1 : Cash Converters

Cash converters is a shop which sells practically anything. There’s one a few busstops away from my home and I decided to buy a PDA from this shop two weeks ago after thinking of its benefits of downloading close to unlimited e-books and reading it on the go. I bought me a Sony CLIE PEG-NR70V there for about $295 dollars.

After a few days, I noticed that some of the buttons didnt work as good. So I decided to go to the shop again. The salesman there said that I could either exchange it or send my pda for a fixing. How long does it take for it to be fixed? A week? I shook my head. I looked at the choices of pda’s in the display cases. It looked pretty scratched and in bad shape. So I decided otherwise. I decided to sell it back to cash converters.

The man looked at the clie and asked for my receipt. And he said to me, our company has a policy of selling back of 1/2 the original price. You’ll get $147 dollars. My eyes nearly popped out of my socket. 1/2? Thats crazy! I’d understand if its 10 percent, or 15 percent, even 3/4. But half? What cut throat! And they’ll sell it back for the original price no doubt! That really got my blood boiling. But of course it’s “company policy” and marina’s policy says that I’ll never go there ever again.

No 2 : Local cinemas

When I heard from the radio that cinema tickets will be raised up to $9 my heart sanked. Only in a cinema does one small bucket of popcorn costs $4.50. Heck, I could get much yummier dairy queen popcorn for lower. But what can one do? Cinemas are pretty much a monopoly here – and if they choose what price that they want to charge, either we pay up or dont get to enjoy at all. Its amazing that it was just a few years ago when cinema operators announced that they wanted to charge only $5 per ticket. This is to avoid having piracy problems.

But there are other alternatives to going to the cinema. I could …
– buy a vcd or dvd at that price which was just running in the cinema 1 or two months back
– rent 4 vcds at the rental shop just below my house.
– cook some food which I can share with my family and eat till we go silly
– Go swimming at the deluxe pool with all 4 of my siblings

In economics, this is called “Opportunity costs” The cost (wheter tangible or intangible) of an alternative service.

Anyway, its a tad bit too pricey if I want to bring Haikal and Diana along. I’m sure families wouldnt find it justifiable either.

No 3 : Seoul Garden

Bleh. Misleading price quotes. It might say $16.99 there. But you’d pay at the very least $25 dollars. Sorry. I’d rather make steamboat at home that feeds 6 people. With a tub of ice cream to boot and enough money left to buy a cheesecake too.

Aye, thats all the bad mouthing that I have to say for the moment. I’ll be sure to add up to more later on.

But for now, I’m going to get ready to go out to claim my new camera ūüôā

*saunters out to put on her make up, styling of hair and other vanities*

Virtual Emotions are still real emotions

I am constantly amazed at how some things that happens purely online could affect me so much.

Consider this. You are sitting at your computer. The other person is sitting over at their computer. There are absolutely no physical contact with each other. All the information being sent to each other are related to each other digitally.

And yet, in between all these, one bonds with each other and genuine emotions grow. This interesting cyber-life where we go to, where there is no sense of touch and yet, incredibly we able to touch each other in other way, through the heart.

I felt gladness when Dynatec and Geri passed their studies. Gladness when Dismay found a wonderful person to have as a partner. Happiness¬†when Zozee found love with lion, a man whom she’s been with ever since I knew her.

I felt disgust when there were drama posts back while I was addicted to neopets,¬†especially at a middle aged man who was an attention seeker in a largely children populated site. He did countless¬†spams of how “clever” and “rich” he was and nonsensical attention seeking posts. This, a 32 year old man in an impressionable website full of 10 – 15 year olds. Well, one thing good about him was how entertaining he was though, spawning different stories day by day. The soap opera that I did not need¬†to watch on television.

I felt sadness upon hearing the death of Undercore and Glonan. Both of them have touched my life back in cybertown, a community that I was part of for a while. Undercore was friendly and never made me feel like I was a dumb newbie while I started out.

Residents in cybertown went by ranks during those days, one can start out as a block deputy and rise up to mayor if one could make it. And even though he was of a high rank, he was friendly to everyone.

Image hosted by
avatar of undercore

Undercore was gone too soon. He went driving and a drunk driver rammed up to his jeep and killed him instantly. Undercore was only 17.

I don’t remember how I met Glonan, but I remembered how wonderful she was. We only met briefly when I was less than a month old in Cybertown. She noticed that I loved faeries very much and gave me a faerie painting as a gift. The fact that she remembered it was touching and I knew that this was a wonderful person to be friends with. I learnt that was a retiree, she usually lives alone in Alaska. This strong, amazing woman was able to¬†climb hills to chop firewood when she is strong enough, and when¬†she grew weaker, continued to do odd jobs around the house.

She was always so nice to me and everyone around her. She offered to make me real life crafts. I had to say no, I couldn’t accept such niceties like that. She insisted, saying that it will be something to remember her¬†by.

For a while, I didn’t understand what she meant by that.

I got a package in the post and received a pair of earrings that she crafted. I thanked her profusely and marvelled again and again at how this creation, crafted by a real life person, that I know of, on the other side of the world, crafted by hand is now in my possession.

“I’m going to make you shorts next,what size are you?”
“You really don’t have to Glonan, you did so many nice things for me already”
“Nonsense! I like making things, hun!”

That was the last conversation I had with her. I didn’t see¬†her online for a few weeks and then I heard from her daughter announcing online that she’s passed away and has given in to her disease. She will be missed, so much. I still think about her, this charming, wonderful lady who loves to call me hun.

So in retrospective, I should not be surprised that I feel emotionally distraught with someone that I cared for very much was feeling bad about himself. I’m still surprised though as it could be a miscommunication. It could be my part on being hyper-sensitive. It could also just be bad timing. But I feel bad when he feels bad. And what made me upset about the whole situation is how helpless I am about it all. I cant do anything about it. I cant stand this helplessness. I cant.

April Foolery Karaoke Fun

I went to work late yesterday. Somehow or another, I felt so tired that I fell asleep right after I showered (thats a first for me)Anyhow, I was supposed to reach there at 1pm at the very latest but when I reached there, it was deserted, and quiet and there I was shuffling around with an umbrella, feeling very cold.

I didnt see anyone apart from two visitors who looked kind of lost. I saw the discipline master, Mr Parmjit walking around. We made small chat.

Mr Parmjit : What are you doing here, Marina?
me : Oh no, I’m too late!
Mr Parmjit : Everyone’s left
me : Are you going too?
Mr Parmjit : No, I’ll be staying here. I’m locking the school. No point for you to stay here
me : Ok. Bye.

That was when I saw Zurainah, the Art teacher trainee walking down. We were both surprised to see each other.

me : Z! What are you doing here?
Z : I was locked in the art room!
me : So how now?
Z : Shall we go to the guild house?
me : Oh, I dont know, what do you think?
Z : Its up to you
me : Oh, I dont mind, what do you think?
Z : I dont mind either

Zurainah started talking to the two visitors and I found out that they were the ones moderating Z. They offered a lift from the cab that they just hired. I was a little hesitant. But when the lady said “I’ll be offended if you didnt!” Oh okay then.

In the cab, Z and me contemplated.

Me : So how will we be going to Suntec?
Z : how about the train?
Me : Oh, I dont mind
Z : But train is very long journey
Me : Or we could take the bus
Z : I dont mind
Me : Its okay with me
Lady Visitor : Make up your minds! We’re already at the train station!

Z and m : We think we’ll take another cab!


Anyways, I think Z is a very interesting person. She’s always very animated and fun loving. She has this infectious enthusiasm that I find so refreshing. Its nice that she’s very friendly too.

Its funny how a number of students mistake me for her. We both have shoulder length hair. I have almost straight hair. We both wear glasses. We both like chunky watches and we both love green too!

I’ll let you judge

Image hosted by

Selvi (in brown) and Narimah (in red) at the back, Z (in green) and me in black

Anyhow, back in the cab, we reached Suntec some while later and we went next to Carrefour to take the lift to the fifth floor. The entrance looked pretty classy (this is my only chance I’d ever see a place like this I reckon, since its highly doubtful that I’d join the NIE Teaching force). The lobby looked reminiscent of a 4 star class hotel.

Anyways, I had my lunch which Waheeda and Narimah complained was not tasty enough. Personally I was surprised that I had rice with soy sauce, and boiled cabbages … it reminded me of the food whilst I had in kindergarden … But the roasted chicken was good, so I ate that with relish

Linda handed me some yummy baked cheese and potatoes later on … mmmm … delightful *slurp*

Image hosted by
Thats Linda on the left, I realise now how bad my camera looks like in the dark no amount of photochopping will help.

I went to one of the Karaoke Rooms after lunch. I’m glad I brought along my camera. though picture quality isnt that great, at least its something.

Visual proof that Karaoke vid clips never go with the song

Image hosted by
sure … she’ll listen to stone for sure …

Image hosted by
but first, I’ll have to build a wall with these beads here on the floor

Image hosted by
Honey, I still havent decided what type of wall to build yet

Image hosted by
Linda : Oh God. Karaoke Vid Clips. The horror!

But needless to say, I had fun. Its good to have crazy stuff to point and laugh to. I had to laugh when Rudie, a math teacher, was singing falsetto to a Bee Gees song. I cant stop laughing when Shaheedah was quipping in while I was singing.

When I was young … (you’re still young, marina)
I never needed anyone … (But you still need me!)
And making love, was just for fun …(OOOOOH Marina!)

I made Rudie sing “Amigos Para Siempre” which was an operettic song. Too funny. I realised that he was singing the girl part and I was singing the male. I purposely made my voice deep and thrilled the R’s

Aaaaamiiigoooosss Paaarrrrrrrrrra siemmmmmprrrrreee. You will always be my frrrrrrrriend. Frrrrrrriends for life not just the summer or the sssssprrrrring …

My stomach hurt from all the laughing.

Anyways, I was amazed that Amanda, one of the top ex student, who joined us, was very good at singing. She sang wonderfully and was game to join in all the silly antics that we did. I wonder if she has a lower opinion of us now … *chuckles*

I had to leave earlier than I wanted to since I had night classes. But I really had a good time, on friday.

The Eye 10 – A movie about the 10 ways to see ghosts

Couple of days ago, one of my student was surfing a horror website. The title of the movie was called the eye 10 and it was about the 10 different ways that one could do to have the ability to see ghosts.

It was corny, but it was sort of interesting to see the different ways. One of them having to dig the soil where a body was burried, use the soil and spread it on the eye. Another is to hit the rice bowl with a pair of chopsticks to entice the hungry ghosts. Chinese Ghosts, are usually hungry, as there are no food in the netherworld. That is why offerings are burnt. These in turn will be food or comforts for them.

I’ve seen of how a complete offering of a HUGE paper bungalow, complete with garden and swimming pool and a BMW car being burnt, I’m sure the ghost would be very pleased indeed. But it was said that the easiest way to see a ghost is to stand up and peek in between their legs.

Image hosted by

Coming back to the website, the students looked genuinely spooked. They looked so cute with their fearful expressions and the way that they jumped when someone deliberately tried to shock them with a sudden jerk.

But come on! The only thing scary about the website was that the fact that it was only in Chinese wih¬†no translation. Actually I find when a movie¬†uses only the elements of silly jump tactics, isn’t really scary at all but annoying.

I think *this* movie is more scary

Image hosted by

And I find it strange that kids loving sfogs¬†too. I mean, its so obvious that they used¬†photo-shopped pictures. And a badly ‘chopped picture at that – Anyone could make these “ghost pictures”

With this case in point, let me use this picture as an example:

Image hosted by

What is she so scared of?

Its the terrifying Kissing Ghost who is looking for her next victim!

Image hosted by

Rumour has it that a young girl, was killed by the kiss of a man with chilli breath. She searches for revenge by looking for other victims in the hopes that she will transfer the chilli breath to them!

Oh no!

Image hosted by

Lets make this into a movie …

Image hosted by

But this will NEVER be in your theatres … ¬†Nevertheless I think it’ll be scarier than the Ring 10 anyway …

Juggling work and night classes

Ahh Wednesday, the middle of the week and just a few days more to go till the weekends. Time passes by so fast doesn’t¬†it? It feels like it was just yesterday that it was the new year and it’s already the end of March and nearly the start of April already.

I feel like I’m procrastinating somehow. There are still a lot of things that I haven’t completed yet.

  • I haven’t completed the new webpage for yet! Yikes
  • I haven’t finished my motorcycle course yet! (Cut date is May, I’ve got about a month to go)
  • I haven’t planned the lesson syllabus yet! Oh dear.
  • I haven’t started on the photography portfolio yet! Argh!

I could go on and on about the things that I haven’t done yet, but I really want to be more reactive about it instead of just whining about it. Maybe a good way to tackle it is to take it step by step instead of being overwhelmed by the sheer weight of it all. I have a bad tendency to procrastinate. Leaving things to the last minute and then looking back and regret at how better I could have done the first time. I know that I work best when things are at the last minute. Having an adrenaline rush is a motivating partner. However, I think slow and steady should be my new mantra.

Briefly mentioning about mantras and New Year, I tend not to make resolutions. I believe that resolutions should not be something one promises to do during the new year but something one promises to oneself whenever they see the need to improve themselves.

It is similar to Valentines day or Mother’s day or Teacher’s day. One should not just appreciate them only on these days, but every day.

I’m resting at home right now after spending an entire day (and night) at work and having night classes. It’s kind of tiring to be teaching in the afternoon and then rush over to Newton (about another hour of bus journey from West Spring)

I was faintly familiar with the location since I was usually there while I was in secondary school. As a Girl Guide, we would usually go to the old guild house during the weekends to train for our camping skills, rope typing skills, and other survival skills (which I can barely remember).

The guide house isn’t there any more and is now replaced with a kindergarten. The place where I was taking my night classes was around the vicinity. I stepped in there for the first time on Monday and saw many other students pretty much like me. Many of them were working adults, there were several teenagers (or teenage looking). I’d deduce that they were like me, all wanting to improve themselves.

I looked at the whiteboard to see the placement of my General Paper class and walked to my new class. I plonked the nearest empty seat which was between a lady and a guy. An interesting self observation, I don’t like to sit alone now as compared to back in maybe Jurong Institute, I’d rather be a loner, and sit by myself and keep quiet and try not to interact with people, if possible.

I quickly made friends with the lady (Cecelia) and the Guy (George) and prepared to have our first lesson there. I was impressed by the quality of the teacher that I had for the past two days. They were more than competent, knowledgeable and engaging. I was also surprised by the level of students that attended there. Many of them sounded intelligent and had high level thinking and speech.

I’d understand the reasoning behind it. Since many were adults, we are (supposed) to be more mature, being more exposed to life already. Maybe it could be a factor for motivation for them since goals are more defined now.

I really enjoy my lessons so far. I miss having stimulating discussions about general topics and literature (though its been many years since I actually last did literature!)

I was amazed that there was not more awareness about this night time class. Truth be told, I wasn’t even aware of it if my cousin Hizam didn’t tell me about it. What I liked about it is that it was definitely more affordable as compared to other private institutions. YMCA¬†in comparison, is conducting A level course for about 300 (or was it 800) per subject. It was a bit much for me. So I’m surprised that not more people stepped forward to enjoy education at this lower fee. Being Malay, I also only needed to pay half of the original fee since it was in the constitution for Malay Muslims.¬†Some people might believe that it is a discrimination. But one needs to understand that since Malays make up one of the lowest income earners, more over is a minority, hence they need all the help they could get.

I wished more people would have signed up and I’m wondering why the reason, it was not so popular. Was it the lack of advertisement? Or was it because of the stigma of the word “ITE“?

Many people have the perception that the ITE would be the area where only the hopeless and the “gone case” would be since they are not strong academically. But I don’t think I ever had that type of perception. I’ve never understood why there is a need for segregation because of of a perception of intelligence back as a teenager and I still don’t understand it now.

My opinion about it became stronger ever since I’ve started to teach in West Spring, teaching the normal technical classes. There is absolutely nothing wrong with them. They are not stupid and should not be branded as that. I only wish that they were more motivated and responsive. But such behaviour isn’t just to be left by educators since nurturing environment at home also plays a huge part in a person’s development.

But coming back to ITE. Does it really have such a bad name? Many people seem to think that way. Attending to some of the talks and activities conducted there for the past year has made my positive opinion about ITE even more concrete. It was a professional institution with many of its students being responsive and helpful. I could compare it with a local top school even, with their mannerisms. I was pretty impressed.

I hope that local people here would be a little more open minded and not put a bogeyman at something that they did not understand.

Anyway, my classes are conducted by Junior college lecturers, with the ITE was just being of a bridge and coordinator which I thought was really wonderful.

(steps off her preachy soap box)

Preachy. I must be inheriting it from my mother. She tends to start with her religious views even when I have an innocent encounter with her.

For example, when I join her for breakfast. She’d start about Nazry calling us on Sunday, saying that he missed us. And then she’d continue to talk about how busy he was in camp. Then she’d say that he doesn’t even have time to pray.

Prayers are important she said. It makes you remember what is wrong and what is right. And let you know the important of time. You pray 5 times a day. You’ll know that when time passes by, it’ll never come back again and learn to appreciate the value of time.

Dont you know the value of God’s riches? God loves you. You should appreciate what he’s given you. Look at the house we are living in. If you dont pay the bills, what happens. The lights get cut off right? The water will now come out anymore, right?

But God, always makes the sun rise and the water flow. He does not expect you to pay him a bill. But he only would like to see his masses to pray … Bla Bla Bla Bla …

I slowly began to tune off. I¬†love my mother, and respect her. However, overzealous preaching can really turn me off. I heavily believe that love is nurtured and not forced on. I don’t like being told what to do. Let a person make their own decisions if they are mature enough to handle it.

(stop with the preaching already! Okay? Okay … moving on)

Juli’s going to KL this friday since it will be good friday then and she’d have 3 days of fun. She asked me to join her and Redzuan there. Man I’d love to join her. KL is such a happening spot. In fact, I’ve always thought about working there. The Information Technology market there is definitely booming and now is a very good time to start working there. Compared to the Singapore market which is quite saturated and pretty much waning. I need a new scene anyways. Working here has made me a little jaded with many of the systems. I’d be able to earn more than what I have currently, even though the Malaysian currency is lower. I’m prepared to leave the things that I’m familliar with here just to taste the chance of greener pastures …

I’m sure Juli will have a great time, I’d liked to have seen Times Square and soak around in Sunway Lagoon,¬†looking at the view from The Petronas towers. And¬†the food there totally rocks.¬†I’m drooling just thinking of Naan bread, Chendol and Teh Tarik.

But I can’t join her as I have to stick to my budget.¬†And my priority right now is the camera. Regardless,¬†I hope she’ll have fun ūüôā


I dont understand it. Why is it that in some restaurants waiters are always so enthusiastic in clearing your table while you’re still at the table? I was having dinner with Juli yesterday at Seoul Garden. I was just done placing my meat strips on the hot plate and a waiter just took away the plate. Eh?

Then I finished my plate of sushi. And then zoom! The plate was gone in less than 6 seconds. I blinked again.

I took a helping from the plate of bbq’ed meat Juli and I cooked and a waiter came up. “May I clear your plate for you?” Uh .. no … we’re still eating. And the same thing happened again in another 10 minutes.

Overzealous much?

Same thing happened while I was eating at Swensens with Geri in Chinatown on wednesday. I was just halfway done with my Chicken Menuire (please somebody tell me its not pronounced as manure)and this waitress extended her hand on my plate and asked if she could clear my plate.

Allo! I’m still eating! *still munching on my chicken*

Oh my goodness! Similar things happened before in different places. And I’m not sure if its just me, or it has happened to other people too. Is there a secret code that waiters and waitresses have? I used to be a waitress to, but I would always wait for the guest to finish eating and leave the table and then clear the table.

So, thats sort of puzzling to me.

Anyhow, I had a relatively good dinner. I felt completely stuffed, like a turkey on thanksgiving eve having stuffed myself at the buffet. I have one major qualm about Seoul Garden though. They would advertise their food as $16.99 for dinner ($12.99 for lunch) but dont be fooled. I saw that the total bill amounted to roughly $45 dollars for the two of us. Thats the most cut throat restaurant I’ve ever seen.

Lets see, the bill was broken down to:

Buffet – $16.99 (times 2)
Table – $5.00
Drinks – $3.00 (times 2)
Wet Wipe – $1.00 (times 2)

For that price, I’d rather eat at Cafe Vienna
. High tea at a nice posh place with ambience. I dont think I want to eat at Seoul Garden again. Dont you think its a heartache?

The only reason I went anyways was that Juli was nice enough to coax and pay for the +++ I very nearly wanted to leave because I wanted to try the new Salad KFC was having. (Nazry said it was good when he was working there, and I saw this guy through the glass window in the restaurant looking really in his own elements while eating it)

Anyhow, during dinner Juli asked me how ‘The Face Shop’ products were working for me. I replied that it felt really good. It made my face feel smooth and soft. Juli smirked.

Whats wrong? Do I sound like a commercial? Yeah, she said. So I turned my head to an imaginary video camera. Lifted my left hand and cupped an imaginary moisturizer and pointed with my right hand to it.

“The face shop. It makes my skin soft and smoothhhhhh”

That kind of reminded me of the different tacky advertisments that Singapore has (and is still running on the airs)

Advertisment for a weight loss center:

Scene of a pretty slim malay girl, next to an old picture of herself
“My boyfriend used to call me a hippo”

A few seconds later, a scene of a slim chinese woman, next to an old picture
“My husband says that I am fat”

Oh. My. Goodness! How could the director ever allow such monstrosity of this advertisment ever be played?

Number one: What kind of a boyfriend would ever call his girlfriend a hippo? I’m so gonna kill anyone who calls his girlfriend that. If I was in a relationship where my boyfriend would ever call me names, I’m going to slap his face, kick his butt and be so violent to him that he’ll totally think twice about running his mouth like that ever again. Of course, by that time, I think he’d probably be to scared to be in any future relationship. He’d probably be a eunuch … or a priest …

Number two: Why should anyone lose weight because a guy asked you to? Doing practically anything should come from the heart. For example, I want to lose weight so that I will have more confident. I want to lose weight because I will feel healthier. Doing something because a male asking you to do it is just going to end in trouble.

Another low class tacky commercial that I’ve seen on telley would be the breast enhancement one by a beauty salon. Picture this:

A mom, wearing a red sleeveless, low plunged V shirt is fetching her son at the playground. She has carefully applied makeup – bright eyeshadow, red lips and extremely coiffured hair (I salute any housewives with young kids who has the time to actually do all this)

And this housewife seeing her son at the slides, opened her arms to bend down and embrace her son.

Guess what?

Camera angles and zooms in to her ample bosoms which was happily jiggling up and down. Every one of the other housewives were putting on this fake gasp. With one hand covering their mouth (every single one of them!)

For goodness sakes …

How my eyes burns …

Is taking vitamin supplements good for you?

I have a confession to make. I’m not very proud of it. Would you like to hear it?


Okay here goes.

I am a habitual pill popper. Yes, thats right. I’m a pill junkie. I would pop pills 3 times a day. Every day.

Observe :

  • Breakfast with 500mg Evening Primrose Oil, Jamu
  • Lunch with Sesamin extract
  • Dinner with EPO, Jamu and Acidophilus.

It started back when I was a teen of 15. There was a studies camp conducted by an external family and child, mind development institution called the Nury Institute. It could be from here where I got my casual interest in mind development. It was my first time being introduced to mind mapping, creative expression and memory recall as well as others. I supposed the camp worked well for me since I did not study for the O levels and I was able to have 6 O Level Credits with a B average

Mum eventually got interested in the retelling of the things that happened while I was in camp to check the institute out. At the time, she just had Diana, my sister and already was trying out the Glenn Doman method for my sister.

Anyhow, in one of the Nury Sessions, there was a chapter on how supplements help in the development of the physical and mental health. That was when mum started to buy supplements and made us eat them.

She’d sprinkle vitamin C on my food and coaxed me to eat the evening primrose oil and then made me eat the multivitamins. I remember thinking of how troublesome it was. It was just a small pill. What could it do? I was sceptical. But I still took it daily anyway.

It happened gradually. So gradual that I did not even realise it. I noticed that I never got sick even though it was the flu season. It was strange to me since when in my entire class would have the flu, I’d be fine, without even the least bit of a sniffle.

I was amazed that I never had monthly stomach cramps any more. That usually plagued me to bits. So slowly, I became a convert to the Faith of Vitamin Pills.

However while in Jurong Institute, my faith was swayed when my language teacher talked about how unnecessary it was to consume vitamin supplements. She insisted that the food that we consume would be more than enough to cover all of our daily necessities. I pondered about this for a while and thought that I should stop for a while. It made sense to me. It’s a vitamin supplement, meant to supplement and not replace.

I felt fine and dandy. For a while. And then I started to have my horrible stomach cramps again. I disliked the taste of panadols or any random over the counter pain killer. I’d rather endure the pain than to eating those chemicals.

I then did some research and found out that there was nothing wrong with consuming vitamin pills and that it was actually not enough to rely on food alone for the daily vitamin necessity. This was because of the fact that due to modern ways of rearing and growing food, there are lesser vitamins from it. A cup of leafy vegetable now would have less vitamins compared to one say, 30 years ago.

I’d rather take the vitamin pills. Still concerned about over consumption though. There is only so much that the body could consume while excess will be flushed away by the liver. So, there could be a wastage of money to over consume.

I went out with Juli again yesterday to discuss about our business plan. She showed me some pictures of a makeover she did for her friends and we both realised that what you see with your natural eye would look different in photos. Juli told me that the make-up she did for her friends looked nice to the eye but turned out very faint in the photos. We quickly realised that thicker make-up was needed for photography shoots.

I took Juli to Sim Lim Square to do a quick survey of the cameras that was sold there. Besides computers, Sim Lim square was famous for selling cameras at a cheaper price. Juli quipped that the camera that she just bought was about 200 dollars cheaper here compared to the one at Harvey Norman.

I went to a shop and enquired about a camera. The salesman showed me a camera. I fell in love almost immediately. It was light. The grip was wonderful. And the features was complete for what a dream camera would be.

Isn’t this gorgeous?

Image hosted by

It has got nice features in it like 8.0 mega-pixels and 3 frames per second. Fast! More information from this site here.

I asked the price of the camera and the sales man said that it costs 1.6k. Is that your best price? I can give it to you for 1.5k he said. Do you have installment plans? Yes, but you need to have a visa credit card to use it.

I arched my eyebrow and told him I’ll think about it and left.

We asked about the price at other shops. Most quoted a 1.8k price. (First shop was better) And all of them had the same response. Installments only by visa credit card.

Now I don’t have a credit card with me. Only a debit card. So I only had the option of paying in full or going somewhere else to purchase it. So I told Juli, that I might try to go to courts to see if they had the same brand to be sold.

Later on Juli and I walked over to Parco Bugis Junction to do a quick make-up survey. We poured over the different make up. Since I was extremely bad at make-up, it was an educational experience for me. I heard words of wisdom from Juli.

“To tell for quality makeup, it should have a good texture”
“The trick to makeup, is blend, blend, blend”
“A good foundation is the base for good makeup”

Now, I am the type of person who’s just slap on make-up and dab it any how. I couldn’t care less how I looked. However, I did feel responsible at that it would ¬†not be professional¬†when they see my uncombed lion mane and panda eyes. So this year, I’m *trying* to be just a leeeeeetle bit more groomed.

I find it of a hassle having to do the morning rituals though.

– Wash
– tone
– moisturise
– medicated blemish gel
– eye gel
– sunscreen
– concealer
– powder
– eye-liner
– lip balm

And that’s the minimum steps! I could go on to eye-shadow, blush and all the other rubbish. I haven’t even started about eye contouring. Oh dear. All those steps above would be about 30 minutes if I hurry. So much hassle! It’s so annoying. But for the sakes of looking more presentable. Anyways, weekends would be my day where I can look like a lion if I wanted to since I won the right to do so ūüôā

We then had dinner at Juli’s old workplace. The place was called Terracafe. I really enjoyed eating the pasta there. The Marinara was really lovely there. That’s the thing I’d usually order when I was at terracafe.

I met Juli’s good friend Ridzuan. I met him for the first time early 2000. It was a horrible experience for me then since the location that we met, and the time when we met was totally wrong. I wasn’t a night person. I was happy to sleep early before midnight and I disliked pubs with a vengeance. I felt very left out since I was the odd one out in the people of 4 since the other 3 knew each other already. They didn’t talk to me much and after a while, I decided to not mingle at all and just kept quiet.

So yes, I have a phobia of blind dates. Cart thinks that I should give these people a chance. But I feel that the situation shouldn’t feel like a “date date” I’d rather get to know a person while doing something together like canoeing, or fairs or bullying someone else. Having to try to impress someone that I don’t know with nice clothes, oh so charming manners, gorgeous hair is just nerve wrecking to me. I really disliked the whole idea.

Anyhow, this didn’t feel like a “date date” this time, and felt more like a casual outing so I didn’t mind when Juli asked her friend to join us for dinner this time. Anyhow, we’ve been talking on msn for a little and I thought that he was funny and eccentric.

Ridzuan turned up in a white tee, belted jeans, black tennis bracelets, and had a beard. He looked quite similar the same way the first time I saw him.

He also was wearing shades! It was already night time!

I commented on how cool his ipod shuffle was. And observed how he and Juli would tease each other. It made me chuckle to see how they would bully each other with catty remarks. Some of which cant be said on this family oriented blog.

But what struck me was how witty Ridzuan was. He was soft spoken, genteel even but words that came out of his mouth was a fluttery riot. One of the first things he said that I could remember

Ridz : I’m going to make a portal for all the ugly people to get together. Show them that they are not alone. There are other ugly people too. The website will be called
Me : Cool, sounds interesting. But isn’t there a similar portal already?
Juli: Sorry ridz. I think you’re too late. We already have a
Ridz : No, I will make it accessible enough that even the most antisocial, the types of people who just visit the void deck to get a keropok would know of it. And I could use your expertise to help me make these people over and feel good about themselves
Juli : So typical Malay. Always using other people.
Ridz : Shut up you (censored)
Juli : You male (censored)

Anyhow after dinner, we went to the Apollo Building for a round of karaoke. Turns out that Juli and Ridzuan loved to karaoke. It was a good way to relieve stress. Singing one’s heart out. However, I shuddered at many cat’s wailing in one of the rooms.

But I had fun. It was good company I was in so it was nice. It felt nice and relaxed. We laughed at the weird karaoke location shoot. One love song vid clip was in an aquarium.

I really had to control myself from bursting. Imagine singing Celine Dion’s “All by myself”

All by myself ….(scene of a crab)
Don’t wanna live….(scene of a sea fish)
When I was young … I never needed anyone (scene of a clam)

There was other silly scenes also, making me wish that I had a camera to take the silly singing scenes, those are just priceless.

– couples dancing off tempo
– crucifixes (in a love song!)
– dogs running on the beaches (for the entire clip!)
– a girl wearing high heels and long sleeved shirt (while walking on the beach!)

Suffice to say, it just didn’t go with the theme of the song. Too funny.

My brother’s going to start his BMT

My brother left for National Slavery yesterday. I’m going to miss that little bugger. He’d always be the one I’d moan to¬†when I’m feeling off.

Of course, he’d could be moody and insensitive at times, and I can be really horrible to him. But I think we’re quite close and confide in each other in a lot of things. Since young, my brother has always tagged around me and I felt the need to share and show him things that I liked to do, like a good big sister should.

I spent the last few days talking to him and we reminised about the days when we were kids. He’d still think that I was eccentric. Oh yeah? I asked him to name one instance that showed my wierdness.

Remember the time when you made me bury my 50 cent coin? That was my entire life savings then and I thought that we could have a money tree then using the 50 cent. I was looking forward to having alot of money to buy stuff.

Memories …

He can be a pain in the neck sometimes, but there are times when he’d be surprisingly nice. Nazry worked in Kentucky Fried Chicken after he left polytechnic. I kept bugging him to steal something from work (Hey everyone does it!) He kept refusing, insisting that he was sick of chicken and won’t bring it home.

I pestered him for days and days and eventually gave up about that. Some morning after, I had a rather surprising message on my phone. It said:

“If it makes you happy, look in the fridge when you wake up this morning”

Lo and behold! A whole boxful of delicious, crispy, fattening sunshiny (stolen) fried chicken from KFC. Mmm!!

So yeah, he is really nice most of the times. I enjoy talking to the little bugger. Mum says that he’s got the heart of a sentimental person.

So anyways, we left for Pulau Tekong early morning and took the ferry there since the island was only accessible by sea. Mum reminisced since she used to live in Pulau Tekong all her life till she became a young adult. I remember it since mum took me there as a little girl. I loved the island life. So slow, and idyllic and natural.

My grandparents owned a farm there with loads of chickens at the back of the house. I’d help out to shower (more like drown) the chickens, sometimes help to shell the coconuts or help out in the provision shop. But most of the times, I’d roam around the island, exploring things, jumping in the sea, bathing in the cool well water, making tents out of things I could find around the house, just being a mischievious little girl.

My grandparents had a neighbour next door who reared crocodiles. Every now and then, I’d sneak in and sit down to observe the crocodiles. They had such shiny, yellow jewel like eyes when they were lying there, basking in the sun, grinning at me.

The crocodiles were in an empty swimming pool, and there were no gates or nets as far as I could remember. I could just sit and dangle my legs at the edge of the pool.

I’m amazed why no one ever scolded me to never go to the crocodile farm even to this day. But, it was really an amazing. I doubt many people had the same experience as I had before.

I could imagine mum thinking about her past life there too as we approached the island.

Security was quite tight there. We had to scan our identity cards every time we reached the gantry and there were soldiers in full army regalia brandishing guns every now and then.

We had a tour of the bunks, the parade grounds, the training grounds and the mess hall. It didn’t look bad, it looked pretty decent actually, if compared to the camp ground that I went to last year (I shiver at the thought of the numerous people using the unwashed bedsheets previously)

I love camp. I’ve always appreciated the outdoors because I was in the uniformed groups:¬†In Primary school, I was in the Brownies, then joined the Girl Guides in my teens. I¬†would have carried on to become a Ranger but for some reason, they never answered to my queries and I sort of lost the desire to join after that.

Outward Bound School was a real wonderful experience for me. It was tough being in the jungle, trying to work out the compass without any help from the guides, hiking for many kilometres in a terrain not familiar to us. Using our skills to spend the night in the jungle comfortably. It’s the little things that makes one appreciate what comforts we have back home.

So, I didn’t worry too much about Nazry’s well being. It’ll just feel different, since our family has always (more or less) been the 6 of us every night. Now it will be only 5. I won’t see him sprawled, sleeping on the couch. I won’t be able to kick him to wake up in time any more.

Anyhow, later in the afternoon, we spent lunch together as a family before we say goodbye to each other. We gave each other huge hugs. That bugger almost broke my back on purpose! Diana’s beautiful straight combed hair was totally messed up when he did his famous nookie. Only a bottle of conditioner could help her hair now. Mum had some tears in her eyes. Even father¬†looked a little less stoic.

Bwah!!! Who am I going to rant and rave to now? Who??

Anyways, I’ll end my blog here for the moment, I should get ready to meet up with Juli, we’re going to Bugis to do some material research for our business. Should be fun, I love that place, its so rustic.