Do not dwell in the past,
Do not dream of the future,
Concentrate the mind on the present moment.
Ahteo's "PROFILE"
Whoever I am.

Pre-U, Post-Army
Stepping into the society already.

Talk cock?
Nah thx. anything just debrief me.

Away to them
AixinAmanda LeeAndyAudreyBethiaChin PingClovisCynthiaZhen EnBang JieKang LihDwayneJiayiJunjieKang RuiLitingLun KuangPamelaShaun TanSherminWeixiangWilson TanXiyingXinzhenYeeLingYiLingYvonne LimYuekai

Soundtrack of Us
Sorry; Silence is GOLDEN

Memories of Friends
January 2008
April 2008
July 2008
October 2008
January 2009
April 2009
July 2009
October 2009
November 2009
December 2009
January 2010
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June 2010
July 2010
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January 2011
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January 2012
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January 2014
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January 2015
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July 2015
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January 2016
February 2016
April 2016
July 2016
December 2016
March 2017
April 2017
June 2017

Help from Her
Done By: Lion
Eulogy for My Grandfather
Saturday, June 24, 2017 11:05 PM

If I am allowed to deliver a eulogy for my grandfather, this is probably what I will like to say.

It came as a piece of news too sudden for us. One that not even one of us would have expected that he would conclude his life that way. Maybe it was fated to be. Having lived to a ripe old age, with good bunch of children, grandchildren, and many more future generations to come.

I would have safely said, that he has no more regrets. He has fulfilled his wishes, of having travelled, having handed over his career to his future generations.

Thanks to the many people who came and gave condolences. He was a known figure in Balik Pulau; being one of the eldest in the community, almost everybody and anybody has seen him around on a bike, or on foot. He’s also well known for his plantation, which specialises in our favourite fruit – durians.

Started from humble beginnings, he was the sole breadwinner for a family of 8; including 4 daughters and 2 sons. It was an empire built from scratch, single-handedly brought the plantation to what it is today, taken over by the 2 brothers. There is no doubt that he has done a fabulous job at that. The piece of land was even picked as a hot spot recently for potential development into a tourist attraction, offering scenic views of Pulau Pinang from various parts of the plantation. Grandpa has the foresight to appreciate the value of this piece of hand, and the will and commitment to make sure the land doesn’t land onto any outsider’s hands, now and in the future I believe.

The discipline to hold on to this piece of land for over 70 years, was no small feat. And to nurture it over this amount of time, selflessly giving his all to create fruits of his labour for future generations to enjoy, he embraced this arduous journey without a single word of complaint. What he has gifted to us, either genetically, morally, or by example, is the art of perseverance, commitment and the determination. I am grateful for this virtue given to me.

How has he impacted my life? Well, to let you in on a fact, he was with me on the first time I met my dear wife. Yes, I’m referring to the airplane trip with him and her to Penang. If not for him, I would not be having her as my wife today. For that, I thank him, for being my best wingman.

I have heard from my mum and the aunts that he has been eagerly waiting for the arrival of my newborn. He had been asking when it is due, when can I come and look at her, etc. It’s gonna be his one of his first few great-grandchildren (I think third), and I was, and still am, proud to be able to show her to him when she arrives in this world. It’s okay grandpa, you will be able to see her from above. She may not be able to see you anymore, but she will definitely hear of your stories, like how much you liked Sarsi, how you can down a whole plate of clams in Vietnam, how he sat like a village chief in the one of the village buildings in Xiamen, how you made the whole tour group walk up the hill with you just because you wanted to walk, … and so much more…

We, the bunch of grandchildren, and his children, had durians the night before the funeral on Thursday. While it’s one of our favourite pastimes eating durians together, we are also reminded of this icon that defines and brought the whole big family together. For all of these, we will remember by heart.

Rest in peace, grandpa. 一路走好。

All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.

My 2 weeks as.... an Uber Driver
Sunday, April 16, 2017 11:55 AM

So, for the past couple of years I had been thinking of getting myself to be an Uber driver (or perhaps should have been Grab, but still stuck with Uber anyway) thinking how life would be like if I were to have a car to chauffeur people around. Well, for the first time I decided to take the plunge - 2 weeks off, no holidays, no rests, just... Uber.

To start off, getting yourself and your car registered is no simple process. Document after document, have to make sure everything is correct before you set off. Took me quite a number of trips to the car rental company and the Uber office (even at the expense of my off days, my work hours) just to get it sorted out. Sigh. Oh and not to mention the amount of money forked out just to start (car rental, deposit, season parking, cashcard).

Finally, 1st April I started driving (not April Fools, mind you). Still remembered the 1st customer was from Kaki Bukit to Junction 8. My leg cramped from too much pedaling (accel & brake). And the passenger paid by cash; he whipped out a $50 note expecting change. Gosh lucky I had JUST NICE for change... And I am out of small notes and coins. Die. Wonder what would happen when the next customer decided to pay cash as well.. worse still, with large notes.

Had driven a lot of passengers around for the 1st week. People from all walks of life. People taking Uber for different purposes. Some good, some neutral, some blur cock, some bad, some ugly. Well that's life isn't it, take it in stride, I thought. Burned long hours just to clock that required number of trips, spending thousands of km on the road, getting horned by cutting lanes, stopping in the middle of nowhere just to get to the passenger who flagged me down at the opposite end of the road..

Here's a few types of customers that I faced worth mentioning on the list:
- Those that placed their pickup location at point 1, and ask you to go to point 2.
- Those that dont even know where they placed their pickup / dropoff location
- Those that use my car to run errand (Pick-up someone along the way, drop off along the way, use my car to go across the street pick up a child then drive back)
- Those that "had a party" in my car
- Those that think I am a taxi driver and expect me to know all roads in SG
- Those that asked me about Uber
- Drunkards (lucky for me I picked up good drunks)
- Shoppers (with handful of bags)
- Travellers (with truckloads of luggage)
- Families (with crying kids)
- Those trying to squeeze in the 5th person in the car
- SMELLY (from sweat) passengers
- Ah bengs who try to chaokeng from NS by going to A&E
- Ah bengs boasting about their knowledge & experience in the pub
- People of all ages calling me "Uncle" =.=

I also happily listened to their stories, had a little chat with some of them just to keep me awake. It's heartening to see myself interacting with people from different walks of life.

But all that for money? Nah. My conclusion: not meant to be driven as a FT. You gonna suffer with all that stress and poor business. Pings come like at the most awkward timings, at very scarce frequency. Be happy that you earn about $10-$20 an hour on trips. Only drive Uber when you had a car of your own; the fare is just nice enough to cover your petrol costs.

2 weeks down. 2 more weekends to go. And the car is gone. There's only 1 take back I have; this would be the 1st and the last time I'm driving Uber..

All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017 9:31 PM

Last month probably was the worst month of my life.

Why am I so timid? If only I had requested to sit down with the team to discuss about the plan. If only I had ensured that the interviewers commit at least 5 times a day. If only I had enforced my rules on them. But it all didn't happen. All because I "don't dare".

And all the if-onlys couldn't have come at a worse time than ever. That surge of emotions really.. could not describe in words. Cried on a lot of nights, nightmares on incomplete work being submitted and feedback given..

I had spent 24 days and nights straight working on, and worrying about the project. Stretched all the way until 3 March. At some point of time I began to doubt my usefulness in the team. Given my character, I would potentially inflict more damage on the projects than I could think of. Would they find out this about me? If so, what would be their action taken? I thought.

I only had 1 word to describe that month - tormented. I felt being torn apart, by clients, by the team, by my wife.

I wonder if anyone would even forgive me for what I had done. If not, I'm prepared.. no choice.

Finally, the end is near. The load of dont know how many surveys was finally lifted off the department grounds. So is my heart.

I have now some time (finally) to take a short break, before the weight of the next project starts to press upon my shoulders..

All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.

Next milestone
Saturday, December 24, 2016 12:32 AM

Aaaaand. I am past my another milestone in life - marriage.

This seems very much out of the game "Game of Life". You really felt that you're walking the path of life. You feel yourself growing older and older each period, hitting "wow-ed" checkpoints yet there's always that slight urge to want to go back to those days, and then you realise you can't anymore.

Anyways, yea... it was a pretty hectic year for me. Looking back, I probably did much more than what I did last year. That felt encouraging; but at the same time more pressured to make sure more happens for me the following year, and beyond.

Now I could say I am getting used to work. Being termed as a laojiao I hope I have enough knowledge to pass on to my fellow colleagues, able to set a good example, and have enough courage to lead the rest of thy ladies as a mentor (but not in appointment wise). Yea pressure builds up.

I'm also feeling the need to step up my game and take control of my work scope. It's no longer a luxury to be following behind someone's footsteps and/or instructions. I need to make my logic more sound and better heard by the rest. After all, everyone has their own style of doing things, so why am I killing myself trying to adopt other people's methods? No wrong doing it my way so long as guidelines are met, quality assured, and no hell break loose, yea?

Married life is a total game-changer. Mentality changes. More We-time, No me-time. Well the only me-time I will have is when dear works night shift so hahah. But anyway, though dear said it wasn't that great a challenge she expected about moving in, the change in lifestyle, use of appliances, houserules, etc. definitely took a toll on her mind and body. Later nights and earlier mornings, restricted timings for chores, all robbed her of her rest, so sad :(

What about me? Simple. when she's down, I'm affected. Well that's what husbands do isn't it.

Closing this year. Hope I have no regrets packing my schedules like never before, steepening my learning curve, squeezing in more knowledge within myself. Prep myself for a better 2017. Hopefully finances improve, that's my main relief. Oh, and I'm definitely going to make that happen.

Tired. Back to sleep. Nights. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.

A major milestone that concluded my single life.
Thursday, July 14, 2016 12:16 AM

It was a chunk under my bucket list checked.

It's been a long wait for this trip. I know that the trip was supposed to be done 4 years back. But somehow it did not happen. Maybe it is a better time to happen now.

I used to write out the whole itinerary for any event that happened, but somehow I think let's keep the adventure to ourselves, can we? :)

Anyways, we met up on a few occasions before to discuss about itineraries, travel bookings, accommodation, and more discussion online on changes in plans or adding new travel locations. We tried to keep it short and sweet, and had the "lets drop by the attractions along the way" plan. Kind of like the fact that all of us are taking the trip with a light heart.

Perth was really, really nice. There was minimal rain, and we were greeted with clear, blue skies and chilly weather on most days. Traffic was cool, no jams (except for a slow traffic on my last day), easy to drive around. People are nice and customer service easily beat Singapore's hands down.

We drove up to Cervantes on the 2nd day... and there I DID SKYDIVING! Totally. Worth. It. It doesn't matter where you jump from or whoever say which location has the best view. The fact of jumping out of the plane at 15000 feet overwrites all other criteria. Even the freezing air up there made my fall more exhilarating.

Next is Pinnacles. They say its a must-go location. Yes, please! Desert-Oasis feel. Took a lot of pictures while walking the trail. Needless to say, we spotted a number of Singapore tourists enjoying the landscape with us.

We were damn lucky to spot the MILKY WAY! Not the iykwim milky way, but it's the one you look up to the sky in darkness. It was chilly but we braved the cold to snap picture perfect shots of the night sky. That... was when we learnt aperture, ISO, shutter speed. Haha.

And I must say ROAD TRIPS ARE FUN! Full tank, check. Snacks, check. Internet, check. Spotify, check. Camera, check. And off we cruised 250km up north and 250km back down within a day. Who's behind the wheel? Me. Wahahah. I guess you know what to expect when I'm taking the wheel.

One does not simply miss... Rottnest Island! the haven for the happiest animal on earth - the Quokka. They really deserve a place like this. Panaromic seaview, lush greenery, serene landscape. Oh, my gosh. We were totally crying out in happiness as we saw how blue, how clear the waters were. Could not even stop our fingers snapping away at every angle, every location. 

We had interim break on our 4th day. Hopped around the town and was totally glad to find some shopping venue. Whew. Outlet stores! No wonder my mum wanted me to "sweep" the items here; So cheap! Too bad they close shop at 5.. And that left us with nothing much to do for the evening sigh. Made dinner ourselves back at the hostel (and of course we screwed up our dinner) and went out for coffee.

Day 5! Set off to Margaret River! Stopped along the way for some phototaking. Saw cows and sheep. Then more cows and more sheep. And... a old lady in a 4WD that honked us to wind down our windscreen and yelled at us "You are a fucking idiot!" -midfing-

Oh. Target is like Primark. Or maybe... Isetan or BHG. Just, way cheaper. That's where kr got his $4 polo tee. and another one on the last day.

I bumped into Yina~ and so happened she was with Suwen! Wa really small world!

Back to topic. We visited the caves deep down. Nature's wonder kept us jaw-dropped. Pictures on FB. Credits to Zhen en for the pics!

Okay I admit I've been searching for kangaroos for the past 5 days. So far no kangaroo. Finally we decided to stop by the animal farm. Zhen en and kr were totally in love with the creatures...

We finally checked in our only airbnb accom at Dunsborough. THANK TUAPEKGONG / GUANYINMA WE DID THAT. Its nature all around us, the country-themed house was super big (we were given the living room and a supersized bedroom and a supersized bathroom). And did I mention that the electricity in the house was entirely solar-powered? :D

And... well that was our last night in Australia. Slept beside the full length window to enjoy the night view for the last time before returning to civilisation.

During the trip I was pleasantly surprised how our minds really thought alike, spoke the same lingo, harbour the same thoughts, carry out the same actions. I conclude this milestone in my life, checked. With flying colours. Let us do a next one. 10 years later. Hopefully Dubai or New Zealand.

Apologies for the late post. But better late than never. 

All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.

Brownie points added?
Sunday, April 17, 2016 12:58 AM

Do you recall that during the CNY there were talks all over the community about which zodiac have the best luck in whatever this lunar year? And that snakes are one of the top few in luck? And that there are certain good windfalls upon the year of snakes?

Yes, it's kindof proven true. For me I guess.

I totally did not expect those coming. And neither did I even dare to expect it coming. Especially at a time where work were just.. too much for me to handle. I was on the verge of breaking down, mind you. And to receive such commendation was (to me) not making any sense.

I know where I stand. I know where my competency is (and will be). I know there are certain things about me that will definitely screw up the projects. But it's either they did not notice the mole within me, or they took it with stride. But anyways, it's got to do with "brownie points".

Word has it that "for effort, if not for credit." Well admitted that I really put in hours. But what's going on in my mind is not about hours.. it's about the "full time mentality". Well I suppose that gives my managers the impression that I am really putting in enough hard work.

Coupled with the fact that there wasn't any one else to share my workload with; I could disseminate as much as I can to temps, but ultimately the chunk of the load was still on me. Sigh. When will this end please tell me. Given a choice I rather be getting less pay but able to F off at 6 sharp.

Anyways, the journey is still fucking long ahead. I better prepare myself for more shit to happen upon me. Pray for the best, and hope by the time they find out my ugly work attitude hope they can take it in good stride.

All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.

The thing about self-esteem.
Thursday, February 11, 2016 12:14 AM

Different people have different threshold to criticism. It doesn’t matter that they are with kind intentions; so long as there is criticism, there will be a certain amount of damage done to the individual.

I admit that I’m always looking towards the negative side of the issue. Imagine yourself feeling that you might be feeling that you had a minus point. At this very moment someone came over to you and say “Hey, I think you should look into your minus point.” That moment deals you an amplified damage which you willingly took it and slammed yourself in the heart. Ouch, that hurts. Well, I’m speaking from the perspective of someone with low self esteem.

There is a fine line drawn between low confidence and low self esteem. Low confidence is not being confident in yourself that you could do something or show that side of yourself; low self-esteem is about not feeling comfortable or satisfied with your own character. When someone agrees with that point that you hate yourself for, that’s when the impact of low self-esteem deals you double the damage.

Life’s emotion has always been a roller coaster for me. I’m losing it. I could see that criticism coming my way. However much a mature person tried to reduce the damage by putting in non-negative words, or by giving some positivity to it, that message that always came across to me is just a mere “hey, I feel you should change this part of yourself, it’s not helping anyone at all.” How should I feel about something that I could not even defend myself against? For all you know, you could’ve had that potential of going against that perception, but as more people slapped that comment on you, you get influenced, you succumb to that comment, and you lost your will to fight back. Totally.

Great example: I did not want to admit that I was a slow thinker. Dad said I was slow. Fine. Mum said I was slow. Fine. Friends, colleagues, even loved one said I was slow. I could see that “slowness” setting inside me, so comfortably I just took their word and began to believe I was “slow”. I couldn’t even bother to prove myself. So where has that potential gone? Did anyone even bother to dig out that “quick-wittedness” within me? No. There was no apparent proof that I was in any way with Quick thinking. Little did they realise it was they themselves who buried their perception of me. Slapping me with the title “slow”. That doesn’t do me justice. But who cares anyway?

I’ve been so tired living up to everyone’s expectations. Especially when I am judged for something I didn’t even belong to. I did not know how I ended up here. What to do. I’m not living for myself anymore.

All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.