Thursday, April 30, 2009
Monday, April 27, 2009
We then retreated to the apartment where John was waiting for us, and ended up watching Russell Peters - a Canadian Anglo-Indian comedian whose jokes can be described as crude, raw, racist, and offensive - depending on how you choose to look at it. For me, in the name of humour, it was worth a watch - we definitely laughed our heart out (Warning: suitable for 18 and above) - one of the audiences brought his young son to the program - I was like "What is that guy thinking? - I wonder how his kid is going to 'store' all these 'information' in his growing 'database' - kids nowadays are darn smart - never underestimate them!).
All in all, it was a great weekend with great company :)
Friday, April 24, 2009
I simply love pictures! It's always there for you to pull out and travel back in time - you'd never get bored no matter how many times you look at it. And after walking down the memory picture-lane, I feel so ecstatic, refreshed and contented and thankful for all the amazing experiences and fun I'd had over the years.
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Monday, April 20, 2009
Lately, I have been asking myself what is it that I really want to do in my life. Deep down, I know the answer. What I need to do now is to concentrate on my studies full time and complete it. During that period, I’d be able to do some soul-searching and move closer towards my goals – one of it is to work with animals. And I can feel the answer is becoming clearer to me – what I need is to take the bold step forward and go along the flow.
I am not afraid of making any decisions relating to my career because I feel it’s time for a change. Right now, I intend to complete my studies – which I have trouble concentrating on with so many things happening now. Sometimes I feel everything is at a mess – at times, I pick myself up and be motivated to get back on track in terms of my work and studies – but along the way, I get lost again and then find my way back – the same process repeats. I am not as motivated in my job as I was before and I can feel my energy draining day by day at work – but I always made sure that I give my 100% when I am teaching my students – that I always made sure - but other than that, it's a drag.
I guess I need to take a break to put things in perspective again – and to focus and concentrate on one thing at a time – and also to rethink my priorities in my life – life is too short for me to spend time on things that don’t really matter as much to me – I want to work for passion – and soon I am going to be doing just that.
Sunday, April 19, 2009
View from the penthouse garden
Saturday, April 18, 2009
We lost Aunty Veni (Alfred’s aunt) to cancer on Tuesday, 14th of April. Aunty Veni and Uncle Bala have always been there for us throughout this tough period that we are going through – and she has been my source of comfort – she has been there to console and comfort me. She has been the one that understood what Alfred and I are going through. She striked to me as a very strong person - she and Uncle Bala gave us strength and constantly reminded me that I am the pillar of strength for Alfred and to keep having faith. From the first day I've met her, I've grown fond of her. Her presence in my life is something that I would remember for the rest of my life for she has definitely inspired me to be strong. She will be greatly missed and cherished for the ways she has touched our lives.
The next day, I received another sad news – a 3-year old girl passed away from brain tumor – I sat and cried as much as I felt like – wondered how to explain all these – there is no explanation – it simply is – it’s difficult to explain death. My deepest sympathy went to her parents and grandmother for what they are going through now cannot be described in words – to watch a little girl suffer and pass away – it’s heart-wrenching.
I realise that life is fleeting and it’s important to cherish every moment – to live fully and appreciate every moment that we have and to say thanks for the little things. I’ve come to realize that there is no point in rushing and getting stressed. Whatever happens, life goes on. It dawned upon me that the lives that we touch when we live is what that makes the difference - the purpose of living.
Sunday, April 12, 2009
Ingredients (makes about 15 medium-sized paus):
- 250 gm warm water
- 1 1/2 tsp yeast
- 500 gm superfine flour
- 2 tsp double action baking powder
- 100 gm sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 3 tbsp olive oil
1. Mix warm water with yeast and let it rest for 5 minutes.
2. Sieve flour and baking powder together into a mixing bowl and stir in sugar till well mixed.
3. Stir in salt to the flour mixture.
4. Pour yeast solution into flour mixture and knead to form a smooth dough. Ensure that there are no holes in the dough.
5. Divide dough into 15 equal portions.
6. Shape into rounds and cover dough with damp cloth and allow it to proof (to increase in volume) for 15 minutes at room temperature.
7. After 15 minutes, use a rolling pin to roll out a portion of dough such that the edges are thinner than the center part.
8. Place some filling in the center and wrap and pleat to form a pau.
9. Place pau on a piece of greaseproof paper and let it proof for 20 minutes at room temperature.
10. Steam pau over rapidly boiling water for 10 minutes (I read from somewhere that if you add 2 tbsp of white vinegar to the boiling water before steaming the pau, the pau will be white in colour; I didn't try it out this time, though).
I made 2 types of fillings for the pau. For one of the fillings, I stir-fried some sardines with onions, garlic, chopped tomatoes, and some dry chillies. For the other filling, I stir-fried green peas with baby potatoes and dried garlic in oyster and dark and light soy sauce.
On the last day in the hospital, we went for our usual walk while waiting for the hospital bill. This time round, we discovered a perfect hide-out (actually, Alfred discovered it :)) - a beautiful koi pond at the far end of the hospital building. The place is so quiet, superbly clean and serene. We just sat there for a while enjoying the therapeutic sound of water and the colorful kois swimming gracefully - and just sat there quietly enjoying the moment. There were so many of them. We promised to come back after sorting out the bills to feed the kois some leftover bread. But thanks to me losing the parking ticket and the ensuing frenzy, we ended up not going. But at least we found somewhere nice and quiet and be thankful, right (although the kois didn't get to eat the bread because of me, tsk tsk tsk).
Wednesday, April 8, 2009
My friend posted an interesting video on how the world has changed in terms of life expectancy and economic growth over the past 200 years. Hans Rosling explained few key aspects in Economics using an interesting tool - the Gapminder World - a visually appealing graph to illustrate the key concepts in Economics and their inter-relationships - and illustrates clearly on the widening gap between the richest and the poorest nations. It's interesting to note that although life expectancy in most countries have increased tremendously over the years, the economic growth gap between the developed and the less developing countries had grown bigger.
This presentation is a great way to simplify complex economic terms to students. Economics can be interesting, after all - it all depends on how it is explained and taught - not just rich with jargon; but if we start relating the concepts to our everyday living, we can see the bigger picture.
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
Friday, April 3, 2009
We brought him there to seek advice on his cataract problem which now has affected both his eyes. Poor Prince, he is only 4 years old and his vision is deteriorating day by day due to the cataract. UPM vet clinic is the only place in Malaysia that has the facility for cataract treatment and it's costly. After examining him, the doctor said he has to run a series of test before making sure whether Prince will be fit for the cataract surgery - and the blood test came out positive for heartworm. Prince is now on medication for heartworm and after a month, we will be bringing him back there to be admitted for them to administer injections for the heartworm.
We were surprised to see how well Prince was 'handled' by the staff and the vet. They are so good at what they are doing that Prince started getting comfortable around them and his anxiety-attack-symptoms vanished. I was very satisfied with the service and the treatment at the vet clinic. I am generally dissatisfied with the animal care service industry in Malaysia - and sometimes wished that I was in other countries where animals are treated more fairly and equally. I must say that the service in the UPM vet clinic far superseded my judgment. They took great care of Prince - never have I seen a vet and the staff and also the students showing so much of care and love in attending to an animal - I don't mind driving from Melaka to Serdang at all - I am comforted with the thought that my fur-kids will be in the best care when I bring them here.
When I saw how much Prince is loved by all the students and the vet, I love him more now :)