Saturday, December 19, 2009

1st Check Up

When we were planning for a kid, I spoke to friends who were already parents about their OBGYNs, the hospitals they were attached to, their overall experience in the hospital and my friends' personal opinion of the doctors.

My birth plan is natural with epi. So it is a little worrying when 75% of the mothers I know had to go through an emergency C Section. Not only were they not prepared mentally and emotionally but the price can jump from RM2k to RM12kin an instant.

From what I understand, many OBGYNs prefer C-Sec to natural because it's more manageable, it can be scheduled in, there's less risk (but longer recovery time) and they can charge more.

So I shortlisted the docs and selected those which try and push for natural where possible. I went for a consultation with them to meet them face-ta-face, check out their bedside manners and to see if the rapport was right.

So now that I am pregnant, it was easy to pick up the phone and make an appointment with my chosen doc.

I also decided on Damansara Specialist Hospital because of it's proximity to home. Monthly check ups which increase in frequency in the last few months can be a chore.

Not to mention the time you spend in the waiting room after making an appointment weeks in advanced if your OBGYN is one which comes highly recommended and is thus more popular.

My first appointment was at 12.30pm but I on;t got called in after 2pm.

I went in and said "Hi doc. When I first saw you, I wasn't pregnant but I am now".

To check he replied "Well done!".

I thought that was a rather odd response. Then I realized that in this day and age, it really isn't that easy to get pregnant. More and more couples are turning to fertility clinics. Damansara Women's Specialist is now Tropicana Medical Centre. So that says a lot. So I guess 'Well done" makes sense.

We spoke a bit then did a scan. That little being in me is 4.8cm and we could see it was almost fully form. Tiny, but the head, spine, limbs & fingers could all be sen clearly. It was jumping up and down and waving it's hands up. How strange. The scan showed that all is well and normal.

So I headed off to do my blood test. And I don't know if it was because of the needle puncture or sheer shock but when the cashier said the cost was RM580, I could not bring myself to bring out the credit card.

I knew having a kid was expensive but perhaps I'm not quite prepared. I'm gonna call my financial advisor soon to talk about setting up a trust fund.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Boobs. Big Ones.

Its weird being newly pregnant and being at work. I'm sitting at my desk and working. But I keep on thinking of this clump of cells which makes up the blastocyst within me. I'm distracted from work and I keep on reminding myself to stay stress free. I've not announced to anyone at work but I have quit smoking. So I'm guessing people will be catching on very soon.

Also, my boobs are a lot bigger. They look great and I often stare at myself in the mirror. Nice!

But man do they hurt!

Guess everything comes with a price.

I love my new cleavage!

Yes yes sure they will deflate later on but while it's here, why not enjoy it to the full? My low cut dresses are coming out!

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Finding Out

My period is late. By 4 days. And I've been feeling .... different. I know we have been 'trying' but could it really be true? I rolled around in bed and looked at Paul who was still sleeping. Not being one to worry or think too much when there is an easy solution, I got up and went to the bathroom.

I looked at the few brands of home pregnancy test kits on the shelf and picked up the cheapest one - Dip & Tell. I figured if it was a negative, i would not have wasted RM30. The cheap brands come with a cup which you pee into then dip a stick in it. I did just that and stared at the stick for a few seconds. One pink line appeared. Then another. I freaked a little. Then stopped myself and picked up the instruction leaflet instead. Okay so I did it right. And 2 lines means pregnant. Hmmm but it's a cheap test. Maybe there's an error.

So I waited a while.

Then opened the package of the very expensive Clear Blue home pregnancy test kit. It comes in a plastic wand with a cap on one end which you open and pee onto the fabric-like tip. I did just that. I recapped it and placed it on the counter. One line appeared. Right. That means the test is working properly.

Then a vertical line appeared. A few seconds later, a horizontal line intersected the first line. So a '+' wasnow staring at me. It was as clear as day. Both lines were prominent and it was no disputing the sign staring at me. Without freaking this time, I picked up the instruction leaflet just to check what '+' means. And I picked up the wand to have an even closer look.

It said: '+' indicates that you are pregnant.

Okay so I'm pregnant. We've been trying. It's a planned pregnancy. And now I'm pregnant. Okay ....


I nearly threw the wand as I backed into the wall and caught my breath. After a few minutes, I went to the bed and woke Paul up. He grunted. I said "Wake up, I've something to tell you". He mumbled, "What? You're pregnant?". I replied, "Yes". He grunted again and went back to sleep.

5 seconds later, his eyes flew open and he stared at me. I merely nodded.

He was immediately awake after that.

We're having a baby!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Bubbles & Lord Gaga's 1st Wedding Anniversary Party

In the blink of an eye, Lord Gaga and I have been married one full year. We celebrated with family and friends by having our first wedding anniversary in Bijou, Mont Kiara.

Our wedding anniversary falls on 18th October but the party was on 17th October. Since it was also Deepavali, we had the theme of 'Scents of a Fragrant Garden". Guests came in Indian costumes and it was a very colourful party indeed.

And who better to plan the party but Bubbles & Fruitcake Events?

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Tuck the Hammie Died 0223hrs Today

Paul & I bought 2 hamsters in February.

Nip aka Skinny. And Tuck aka Fatty.

We were unsure if we should get a pair of same sex hamsters but in the end, decided on a male & female pair. Tuck was pregnant some time ago and gave birth to 6 baby hamsters. But due to reasons unknown to us, none of the babies survived.

It's hard to tell when a hamster is pregnant but watching Tuck's bahaviour last night, it did look like she was in pain and was going into labour.

As we learnt from the first time round, the best thing to do is not to do anything and leave her alone. We're not even supposed to peer into their home as it stresses the mother out.

So off we went to bed at midnight. At about 2am, Paul got up from bed to check on them and found that Tuck was in the middle of giving birth but there seems to be complications. He held her while she took her last breath.

I woke up this morning and saw Nip in their home. I thought it was rather strange that there were some peeled kuachi in a corner. Usually the hamsters would peel it and eat it right away. I thought Tuck was sleeping inside the house.

Then Paul told me this morning that Tuck died. Poor Nip is in mourning!

I'm feeling sad too and am reminded that this is the feeling one gets when your pet dies. This is one reason why getting a pet is not always a good idea. They bring you a lot of joy. But the more joy the bring when they are alive, the sadder you are when they die.

Poor Nip. Poor Tuck.

RIP Tuck. Hope you are in Hammie Heaven with all the kuachi you can eat.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Bombing in Jakarta Again - Marriot & Ritz

The Ritz in Jakarta just got bombed! Just happened and just heard about it so no details yet. Heard that the Marriot was also bombed. CNN didn't mentioned Marriot but if it is true, that's horrible, especially since they were bombed a few years back.

Just 2 days ago, there was a fire in MK Bayu. Not that there's any connection, but the recent space of celebrity deaths, fires, bombs .... it's pretty depressing. What's going on?


I started work at Ogilvy about 2 weeks back. While it's not been too stressful yet, time has absolutely flown by. I'm starting to get immersed into the work and I'm already a part of the Ogilvy Cheerleading team for the Corbis Futsal Tournament that's coming up. I've also been roped in to organize the opening ceremony and party for the newly renovated bar and chill out area for the agency. I'm already begining to feel tired and not being able to wake up in the mornings.

Well, at least my mother-in-law commented at dinner last night that my skin looks good. This means I'm really not as stressed as I think I am. Hehe.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Starting Work Soon And Will Have To Hit The Ground Running

On second thoughts, maybe it's not so great I'm starting work so soon.

Yes I'm now well rested, I have my energy back and my spirit have been lifted.

I've completed about 80% of my To Do List which consisted of about 80 over items.

I am beginning to be slightly bored at times.

And I've been spending way too much money for a person who's not working.

But ... the guy I'm going to replace at my new job just told me to enjoy the rest of my holiday because as soon as I get into work, I'll have to hit the ground running.

I'm grateful for the heads up but I'm already starting to feel stressed!

Losing Track Of Time

I saw John the Chef on MSN and proceeded to send him the following message:

"Hello! What r u doin online? It's Friday. Aren't workin?"

To which he replied:

"Hallo. I've finished work. And it's Sunday"

Whoops! Indeed it is a Sunday night. In fact, it's technically Monday morning now.

Not working and not having a set routine is wrecking havoc on my sense of time.

My time keeping is also often off. Not having deadlines to chase not that many appointments to keep, means I don't apportion sufficient time to get up, get ready, get out of the house and drive to a destination.

Good thing I'm starting work soon!

Lower Back Pains Already?

I know that I'm only 32 and I'm still young but my body is certainly beginning to feel old. Forget the grunting when i sit down in a low seat or getting up after being sated for a long time. That started about 2 years back.

But these days, after seated for a period of time, I actually feel a sharp pain on my lower back when I get up! It lasts about 5 seconds, then slowly goes away.

I was complaining to Fruitcake and she merely said "Oh that's normal" then proceeded to show me how she bends her body with her shoulders hunched and her back pushed forward in order to ease the pain.

We're in our 30s and we're getting all these ailments already? We're growing old right before our eyes.

We now understand why our grandmothers used to stoop forward, and beat their lower backs with a fist after they get up from a sitting position.

Friday, June 26, 2009


Rest in Peace Michael Jackson!

You were a child star, then rose to be the king of pop. Then you got a pretty weird towards the end.

But still, you once rocked the world! And The world mourns your death.

Rest in peace.

Not Working Is Expensive

I've been back for 2 days and I've spent RM1000!

I can back on Wednesday morning.

A the airport, I spent RM186 at duty free on alcohol, cigarettes and chocolates.

I got back home, showered, and met Michelle Who Stays On The Seashore for lunch. And after that I sent RM218 on DVDs!

Got home, changed, picked Fruitcake up and went to Angle Caster for our meditation class. We went earlier and found that there was going to be a change in manangement and there was a moving out sale. We spent an hour looking at crystals, crystal holders, sun catchers, dream catchers, candles, pendants and more. And i end up spending RM234 on several items!

And on Thursday, I went for lunch with Kit at Ikea Cafe. And after lunch, I was in Curve running errands when I saw that Nichhi City was on sale. There were a few items I liked there which I held off because I was going for the Singapore Sale. Now that Nichhi was on sale too, i went in to pick up the pieces I wanted. Another RM189 there.

For dinner, Paul and I went to Ayam Penyet in The Curve. We wanted to go to Ikea to pick up a floor uplighter but along the way, we passd by Aussino which was on sale. The 600 thread count duvet covers and bedsheets were going at 70% off. And it's 600 thread count too! Apart from luxury hotels, I've never slept on 600 thread countbedding before. So there's another RM212 there.

So I've spent RM1,000 in 36 hours! This is apart from the throusands I spent at the Great Singapore Sale.

What happened? I've never been a shopper. And I loathe shopping. And I always think twice about spending money.

Not working is getting to be really expensive for me!

I'm guessing not being focused on work and career gives me more time and excuse to walk around a mall and be lured by sales, to want to organize the house, to decorate the house, and generally have more time to be ou and spend money.

Back from Singapore

Singapore was great!

The Great Singapore Sale wasn't great, compared to the ones in the years before. Most stores were on 30% discount. But then again, with the minimal discounts, the stuff were still cheaper than what we can usually get in KL.

So in the end I did shop. In Ralph Lauren, Massimo Dutti, Banana Republic, Esprit, URS and more. It's a good thing I brought an almost empty luggage bag.

I don't usually shop and frankly I find it a hassle to look through clothes, get pushed and shoved, look for the right sizes, line up at the changing rooms, change into the clothes, look at it at all angles, bend over and move around to ensure it's a right fit, decide which ones I like, mentally calculate the price after the dicount, decide if the price was worth the item and after all that, move on to the next store and start all over again.

It's so tiring.

But after shoppng and hunting, I did end up with many peices of clothing I really liked.

It comes at a great time too cos many of my old clothes no longer fit or was out of style.

And, I'm starting work soon! This new company seems to be a little dressier than my last few companies. So I'm looking wearing a brand new wardrobe to a brand new job.

It was also great to catch up with my old friends in Singapore. I was great seeing u Gary, Lance, Rina & Yenny!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Off to Singapore!

I'm off to Singapore tomorrow for the Great Singapore Sale and to meet up with friends too.

And I have such a packed holiday ahead!

Better go on holiday before I need to start work again.

I'm leaving in the morning and arriving at lunch time. Banana Gary will pick me up for lunch and a spot of shopping before I head to an aunt's house for dinner.

Maybe will go out for drinks after that if Dawn came come out to meet me.

The full daytime Friday will be dedicated to shopping then it's dinner and drinks with Lance and gang.

On Saturday, I'll meet Yenny and Divemaster Gan to shop for dive gear.

And if weather permits, I'll hang out at Cafe Del Mar in Sentosa.

On Sunday, it's lunch with Jasmine as soon as she touches down in Singapore and that's the end of my Singapore trip!

It feels like it ended even before it began!

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

No Walk In The Park Tomorrow

I take it back. I'm not going to walk in the park tomorrow.

My calves and thigh muscles really hurt!

I didn't think it'll be this bad till I realized that I walked 8km this morning. Including uphill terrain. And after zero vigorous exercise in more than 6 months.

I'm gonna stay in tomorrow. Possibly in front of the TV with my legs up.

I'll resume the walk in the park next week. And maybe walk 5km only.

So I guess I'll sleep in tomorrow.

One of the many luxuries one doesn't often get.

A Walk in the (Taman Tun) Park

I've tried walking the Taman Tun Hill and each time I trudge up that hill, I'm cursing and out of breath. But once I've completed it, I feel really good!

So when Hosanna told me that she walks in the Taman Tun Park (it's next to the hill and much less challenging) every weekday mornings, I told he I'd join her.

I woke up at 7.30am this morning, donned on my sports gear which hardly sees the light of day, and went to the park. We started walking and chatting and before long, we actually completed one round around the pond, one round uphill round the pond and one more round around the pond. We did so well that we even decided to walk down the road to check out the Hutan Rimba and walked one round there.

We walked a total of 1 1/2 hours non-stop. And it wasn't as hard as I thought it'll be.

I may just walk in the park more mornings of my weekdays. And eventually, maybe tackle The Hill again.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Ikea - No More Plastic Shopping Bags

As of yesterday, 5th June 2009, Ikea will no longer be giving out plastic shopping bags to shoppers. They are doing their bit to reduce the amount of plastic bags which are harmful to our environment. Animal and sea creatures are hurt by them. And it just contributes to more waste.

If shoppers still want a plastic bag, they can have the usual Ikea bags for 10 sen and 20 sen per bag, depending on the size.

Sales from the plastic bags will be donated to the Malaysian Nature Society for the Climate Change Programme which includes planting of mangrove trees at Kuala Selangor Nature Park.

I love that they used actual Ikea products as part of the campaign!

This is great! Ikea bags are durable and biogedradable and with this move, they are taking an even strong stance in protecting our environment. It's geat to see big companies, well loved companies, doing this to encourage individuals to do the same. Small changes in our habits and lifestyles bring about huge positive changes in the world we live in.

And the big blue Ikea carrier bag which usually retails at EM3.90, is now available at RM1.90.

I currently have shopping bags in the car for when I go grocery shopping. I'll now remember to bring a bigger bag for when I'm shopping in kea.

Another reason why Ikea is a brand I love.

More Baby Girls Than Boys

Now that I'm at that age where most of my peers are married and are having babies, I noticed that there seems to be a lot more baby girls.

Fruitcake and Ed has Isabelle.

Twister Gwen & Dason just had Chloe.

Sue Ann has Kay Lee.

Helene & Alex has Gabrielle.

Desmond & Diana has Faith.

Aileen has Kaitlyn.

Kuen has Hannah.

Tamilzchelvi has Apsara.

Wendy and Ee are going to have a girl in September.

The only couple with a boy is Chris A & Eilene. They have Aidan.

Wonder why that's so. Is it a coincidence that most of my friends have girls? Or is it that there really are more girls born into this world than boys these days.

Welcome Chloe Abigail Vela!

Fruitcakes' lil sister, Twister Gwen just delivered a healthy baby girl this morning in Melbourne, Australia.

Welcome to the world, Chloe Abigail Vela!

And congrats Gwen & Dason!

Hugs, love & kisses to the Chua & Vela family.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Vegetarian Wednesday & Meditation Class

Vegetarian Wednesdays are back again!

Not that they ever left but I found it difficult to be vegetarian every Wednesday because its hard sometimes during a business lunch or when I'm eating with a group in a place which does have vegetarian dishes or have crappy ones. In which case, I'll be vegetarian on another occasion or on another day.

But now that I'm not working, I'm going to be vegetarian on Wednesdays as well as any other meal or day I can.

And as an added reason, Fruitcake and I have started meditation classes. It lasts for an hour on Wednesday evenings. It's Meditation for Stress Management. They guy who leads the class, Chi Choong, is not only a psychologist but also a clairvoyant. I never thought that that combination would work. Science is science. And the new age spiritual world is ... well, a completely different work, isn't it?

But now that we got to know him and tried out a few classes, it makes perfect sense. We start the class with an aura reading, go through the theories of the meditation we're about to do, do the meditation, and discuss about it afterwards while looking up and around to see if our spirit guides made an appearance.

So Fruitcake and I now go to class together but with slightly different agendas. She goes to meditate to try and understand and deal with her depression. While I go to develop my psychic abilities. I always felt that i could 'feel' things and I'm not finally ready to take it to the next level. It's been a little scary so far, but it's also been interesting. There are many branches of psychicism but the ones I'm most interested in is clairvoyance and aura reading. I'll update again once I've had some success in 'seeing' things. :)

Friday, May 29, 2009

2 Upcoming Parties

Now that I've time on my hands again, I'm going what comes natural to me. Party planning!

I've 2 up my sleeves already.

The first is an event my American Express. It's called Chocs-2-Die For Soiree. That's the easy one. I just need to see who wants to go, make the reservations, remind people and make sure everyone has a good time. But you'll be surprise how such a simple event can become complicated when there's more than 4 people on the guests lists. Timing, availability, proximity, logistics ... all come into play.

Naked Teoh was online and I was telling him that I want to plan a party and the first thing he asked was "What's the theme". Hahaha! I told him he was smart to know that there was a theme and he replied "With u... a party without a theme is like a diver without their oxygen tank" . So true!

So the second party is going to be a house party and since World Environmental Day, Summer Solstice, Flag Day, Fairy Day and Best Friends Day fall in June, the theme could be one of those. Or it may even be 'Come As Your Past Life Character'.

I'm going as a witch or a fairy naturally.

Less Time, More Money. More Time, Less Money.

Now that I'm not working and have loads of time on my hands, I'm spending more money. I just spent a few hundred bucks buying DVD box sets to catch up on all the TV series I've missed. And having lunches with friends. And since I'm moving around running errands and meeting friends, I'm using a lot more petrol and paying a lot more parking too.

Guess I've to start staying home more often to watch the DVDs I've purchased, have friends over for lunches and coffees and start thinking of businesses I can do online and working from home.

And start using up those prepaid spa, massages and mani & pedi sessions!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Angel Healing - I was a Witch. Now that explains a lot.

I had lunch with Fruitcake at Champs and after she went back to work, I went for an angel healing session at Angel Caster.

I went for an angel reading before over there. It's just like a crystal ball reading or a tarot card reading but the person conducting the session will listen for the angel's message or answer and she'll tell it to you.

The person who does that at Angel Caster is Stephanie van Driesen. It was an interesting session and friends who went for the angel reading often followed up with an angel healing session.

The moment I walked in, Stephanie asked me if I was sure I wanted to do an Angel Healing session because I didn't look like i needed any healing. "That's cos I quit my job!" I told her but wanted to experience it anyway.

So we went into the room, she called upon the angels and started singing in this amazing voice, like a dolphin at times, which surrounded the whole room and lifted me up. Not literally, but there were times I felt I was floating or hanging almost upside down. A few interesting past life experiences surfaced and she 'healed' those experiences. She also mentioned a few past lives I've lived which really explained why I am the way I am now in this life.

She even told me my life's purpose in this life.

For those who believe in past life, there are things which happen and you carry into this life time. And those things effect you but you do not know about it or are unable to do much about it. This healing cuts the cords that bind you to the negative elements in those lifetimes so that the lessons which you're supposed to learn or the bad experiences do not affect you as much in this lifetime.

What I can reveal to you about one of my past lives was that I was a witch in a village in Scotland. That explains why I always look forward to Halloween and can't wait to wear my witch's outfit. Or why I love Harry Potter. Or why I'm always curious about potions and spells. Hahaha. But all of this also goes to a much deeper level of my being in this lifetime.

That's something I should definitely explore further.

Work-Free Day 2

Ah bliss. I woke up, pottered around the house and seeing how gloomy, chilly and windy the morning was, I'm now having a croissant and coffee at the balcony. Worklessness is great!

Monday, May 25, 2009

First Non Working Day

My first work-free day!

And there's so much I want to do like finally file my documents, clean up the house, declutter, clear out the larder, catch up with friends, go to the dentist, sell stuff on e-bay, think of online business ideas, meet my financial planner to consolidate monetary matters, reiew my insurance policy, watch up on TV series, develop photos for PADI Advance Diver card, develop photos from the wedding (I know! That's not fully completed yet), chase the videographer for the wedding video (again, I know!), got for a mani & pedi, go for a spa, start yoga again, learn meditation, sit the by pool and maintain my tan, host a party, think of a theme for that party, post pics up from the Komodo trip, read, blog more and so much more!

These are all the items on my To Do List which were neglected because I was too busy working.

And now that I'm not working, seems like I've loads to do!

I shall start my first official non-working day by having lunch with Michelle, one among several non-working friends. Yay!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Last Day At Work

Today is my last day at Euro. Woo hoo! Freedom!

Don't understand why I didn't quit any earlier.

Now I can look forward to coffees with friends, spas, manis & pedis, catching up with friends, Facebooking more, try and finish reading all the books I've bought and so much more.

To not have anything else waiting for me later on is both scary and liberating.

But I'm going to enjoy what I can while I can.

1 hours 40 mins and I'll officially be work-free!

For now, I'll while away the time at Starbucks with my MD and my ex Account Director.

Yay! I'm outta here!

Komod LOB Dive Trip

The Komodo Live-on-board dive trip was absolutely amazing! Scary but amazing and relaxing and exciting at the same time.

All we did was ......
- wake up when someone bangs on our door and yell "BRIEFING!!!!"

- come out of our rooms, still in our jammies, rub our eyes and listen to the briefing.

- after the briefing, straight away check our equipment and suit up

- jump onto the small boat, head out to the dive site, jump in and do a 45min - 1 hour dive

- get back onto the big boat for breakfast, rest, dive, have lunch, dive, have tea, dive, rest, do a night dive, have dinner & watch a move, sleep

- wait to be awoken by "BRIEFING!!!!" the next morning.

We saw manta rays, black tipped sharks, white tipped sharks, blue spotted ribbon tail eels, barramundi cods, Napolean wrasses, turtles, dolphins, helmut gurnards, moray eels, bob-tailed squids and so much more.

I don't have all the pics with me yet because when we all met up last weekend to exchange pics, we couldn't burn them all cos the photographers among us were shooting in raw so the file sizes were huge!

But I'll post whatever pics I have this weekend or early next week.
Hopefully I'll get every one's pics by then and I can post up the best pics. And some videos too.

For now, here are some of the pics I have.

The little boat which takes us from the LOB boat to the dive sites.
One of the manta rays!

A school of ... err I'm not sure of the name of this fish.

Sea apple.

Pigmy seahorse. It's so tiny and camouflaged.

Orang utan crab. So hairy!
Flying gurnard. It was a pretty big fellow!
Bob-tailed squid. Tiny, hard to find and totally adorable. Yenny & I wanted to bring him home.

The Komodo Dragon!

The crazy divers. We love the fish eye lense!
L - R: Yenny, Paul, Bubbles, Jon & Gan(asai)

Pics on this post curtesy of Yenny, our only underwater photogarpher.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Off to Komodo Tomorrow!

The day has finally arrived!

I'm actually headed to Bali tomorrow and to Komodo the next day for 9 blissful days on a boat without internet connection or phone reception. Just the sun, the sea and some really huge sea creatures.

I promise I'll take loads of pics!

And since I've quit my job and have short notice period and will soon be out of this hell hole, I will have time to post up the pics and blog about the trip.

I love that I've quit my job and am going on holiday!!!!!

Monday, April 27, 2009

3 Days to Komodo. 27 Days Till I'm Out Of The Agency

Today is my first day back at work after throwing in my resignation letter on Friday. I feel like a cloud has been lifted. I'm no longer dragging my feet. I stop holding my breath. I even did a twirl and a dance today. It feels so gooood to know that I'm going to be out of there and won't need to interact and be polite and civil to those who are nasty, rude, annoying and generally bring negativity every time they walk into a room.

1 months notice can seem like a long time when you've officially said you want to leave.

So I'm really glad that we're leaving for Komodo in 3 days. In fact, this time Friday, we'll be on a beach or a bar in Bali having a drink and chilling out after a day of surfing, shopping and tanning.

We'll be in Bali for one night then we'll fly off to Komodo the next day then onto a boat where we'll be living and diving for the next 9 days.

We'll be out at sea or under the sea. It'll just be us, the blue waters and the underwater creatures. There was once in my life where I could not live withoit my mobile phone less I miss a party or event or some hot news. I even brought my phone into the shower with me. On this trip, I can't wait to get away to a place where there is no phone reception and the only thing that's technologocally advanced on the boat is a fish finder. So cuten rigyht? Just like Maxis' Friend Finder.

We get back, I work for 2 weeks then I'm out of there!

(The panic and worry and boredom of not having a job or income will kick in later. But that's later)

Komodo dragon, mantra rays & dugongs .... here we come!

No It Is Not Worth It

A few months ago while I was hating my job, I asked myself if it was all worth it. Is it meant to be this hard? Maybe it, is the higher I climb. Maybe I just need to take it a day at a time. Stress is normal.

But now that a few months have passed and I'm still feeling like crap, I sat myself down and listed down all the reasons why I hated my job and I stopped being myself. I needed to understand what was going on. So I wrote and I wrote and I came up with 40 reasons why I hate it here. 40!

A lot of it has to do with the client. I've already blogged about the long meetings without food or water. I have to say that they're better now and at least do provide water but now very often while we're presenting work which the client rushed us to finish, the client will be passing notes to his colleagues, going through his credit card bills and once even watched a video and laughed out loud. Yes, this is DURING the presentation. To say that he's rude and disrespectful is an understatement.

This agency also doesn't feel like an agency. There's no energy or fun. I feel like it's shrouded in secrecy and I'm constantly walking on eggshells.

Those are just a few out of the 40 reasons.

But the last straw for me was during a meeting last week, the client actually said "You fucking piss me off". Yes. During a meeting. Did my boss defend or say something? Nope. Then again the client once called my boss "My bitch". So my boss isn't going to do anything is he?

Well, he can take his brand and stuff it up his ass cos I'm not going to do this anymore. I'm not going to kill myself for a brand who own brand owner doesn't seem to give a toss about it.

So I threw my resignation letter on Friday and it feels so good!

While I'm still fairly stressed with work, th thought that I'm gonna be outta here soon really lifts my spirits.

So I'm lookin for something else. Despite the economic situation, lots of people are actually hiring!

So I'm hoping for the best.

As least I can now start to rebuild my self confidence.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

5 hours Meeting, 5 Hour Report, 2 Hour Debrief

I spent 5 hours yesterday in a meeting with the client which ended at 10pm in their office.

The only consolation this time is that they ordered pizza. Which came with Coke thankfully. Or we'll be starved and parched again.

As soon as the meeting was done, I got into my car and drove home while some stayed on for a few drinks.

As soon as I got into work this morning, I went out for another meeting. And as soon as i got back, I had lunch then spent 5 hours writing out a report for the meeting yesterday.

And there after i spent another 2 hours debriefing the team on the meeting and discussing next steps.

This means I've spent 12 hours in a meeting, reporting on that meeting and debriefing about that meeting.

So where will I find the time to do any work resulting from the meeting?

This is so counter-productive. And totally ridiculous.

And the client asks us why it seems that nothing gets done.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Preparing for Komodo

It's not often I'm excited about a trip. I attribute it to being older, having more experiences in life and and traveling to a fair amount of different destinations.

So a trip is usually just a welcomed getaway or for a specific reason be it visit friends, shopping etc.

But I'm actually excited about Komodo. After the diving re-fresher course yesterday, Jon the Diver, Paul & I headed to Global Scuba in 1U to look at gear.

I don't need a wetsuit since I was so enthusiastic (despite the fear) that I bought it even during my Scuba Discovery Course. And I do have a mask. But they are both black and I'd like to have some distinguishing factor when all suited up under water.

Somehow most dive gear are in black, yellow and sometimes purple. And not very nice shades of those colours either. Boring.

I'm really looking forward to the baby pink fins and mask which I've ordered and should be collecting next week.

Before a trip, I love to prepare for it. Like learning a new language when you're going to a country where English is not the primary language.

So when it comes to diving, I guess it's buying gear since i can't possibly learn to talk Fish.

Tho I'd like to try and swim like a dolphin and talk to them less I get to see one in Komodo.

Bubbles is Going to Komodo!

I know that the economic situation is bad and we should all be bucking down, eating in and spending less but an opportunity has come along that's too good to give up but it will cost RM12,000 (For Paul & I)!

Jon the Diver, Paul & I are going diving in Komodo! Yes, the place with the komodo dragons.

But we'll be living on board a boat so we'll be safe. From the komodo dragons at least.

My last dive trip, which was also my Open Water Certification, was in Redang 2 years ago. So I've forgotten a lot about the technicalities and feel of diving. So yesterday Jon, Paul & I went to the Polo Club in Kota Damansara and did a diving refresher.

I'm actually very freaked out with water. I swim with my head above the water. So diving and being totally submerged in water is really scary for me. Yet it's something I really want to do. Maybe not doing pool sessions and learning everything in the sea during my Open Water added to my fear. But yesterday was great and I re-learnt a lot of the skills and am now a lot more comfortable in the water. At least my bouyancy is under control somewhat.

And I'm ready for Komodo!

Komodo sounds so exotic and it's a place I never thought of going. But Jon the Diver who just came back from Makasar, suggested it and it sounded great!

It was supposed to be just for 6 days, followed by 4 relaxing days in Bali. But we've been told that there are so many dive sites in Komodo that a full 10 days is recommended.

So now I need to go buy my pink fins and pink mask, pack up and go! Komodo!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Recession in Malaysia & China?

Signs of Malaysia being in recession seems to be more apparent now.

Apart from the retrenchment of 5 people in my office, I also read that Dell is offering VSS and will be retrenching 5% of their work force in Malaysia. A friend who works in an electronic manufacturing firm may be out of a job when the company shuts down his division in the second half of this tear.

But we're still doing fairly well comparatively.

And China is still booming despite The Star today reporting massive loss of jobs there.

And I know this because I recently received calls from headhunters regarding jobs in China. These are fairly high level jobs and they're offering expat packages with the pay range of RMB35,000 to RMB60,000.

Here I was thinking the the RMB is a large denomination currency and therefore it does not amount to much.

So I went to my favourite currency converter site, and checked how much is RMB60,000 in RM.

I almost fell off my chair when I found it was in access of RM30,000!

It is a lot of money for me anyway, considering the level I'm at and the exposure I've had so far.

So if China can pay an expat that much (and I have loads of friends who have moved there a few years ago with no signs of coming back), they can't be in recession, can they?

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Are We In A Recession?

Given the 2 rounds of retrenchments in my company and news that tens of thousands of people are out of a job in Malaysia, it feels like the bubble finally burst and recession has truly hit our shores.

But I was in Jarrod & Rawlin's in Damanara Heights for dinner and the place was full of large groups of people laughing and having a jolly good time. Dinner and drinks for 5 of us come up to almost RM600. So that place isn't exactly a place for those on a budget.

And recently, I've been getting a few calls regarding jobs within the industry.

Isn't that surprising?

We're in recession, supposedly, but so many agencies are hiring. And hiring pretty aggressively too.

So actually, are we really in a recession?

Wednesday, March 04, 2009


For weeks I've been feeling uneasy about work. It's not just about the work itself because that sucks ass big time but hey what can you do ......

I just felt that something is up and that the the energy in the office is dark, very negative, almost oppressive.

But I just couldn't put my finger on it.

There seems to be several management meetings a week and after the meetings in the board room, a couple of the directors will gather in the glass meeting rooms and talk further.

They then have a staff meeting to tell everyone how the agency is moving forwards and how we're in a good place and everything is dandy. Trying to spread a feel good factor.

But we're not buying it. In fact, we all walk out feeling like they're trying to cover up something.

So I've been uneasy all week. Until last Friday that is.

I was stuck in a glass meeting room for almost an entire day for a discussion and brain storm session. When I emerged at 8pm, I saw groups of people huddled around looking shocked and bewildered. Wondering what happened, I walked up to the Creative Group Head.

Me: What happened?

CGH: You didn't hear?

Me: No. What happened?

CHG: 3 people have been retrenched.

Me: What???!!

So i emerge from an 8 hour meeting only to find that 3 of my colleagues were told to pack up and go within 24 hours.

Even better was my manager who asked another colleague of mine today.

Manager: Where's that fella? His desk is so clean.

Other colleague: Oh you didn't hear?

Manager: No, what happened?

Other colleague: He's been retrenched.

Manager: What?!!

And so it goes. Management is not telling the staff whats going on and no announcements have been made that there's been retrenchment. So people walk into the office to find some collegues missing. And even worst, that a new person is sitting in their colleagues place.

I can understand the retrenchment. What I don't understand is they way they go about doing it.

I don't know if there is a right or wrong way to handle retrenchment but I do know that doing it the way they've done it is leaving the remaining staff feeling puzzled, scared and demotivated.

Open Plan Office

Some companies choose an open plan office as they want to have more transparency within it's walls.

My company believes in that. We have rows and rows of work stations and no one gets a room, even the MD or CEO.

But we do have rooms albeit with glass walls. Again, to promote transparency.

But I don't think it works. Sometimes, there are phone calls one needs to make which you don't want the world to know about. Or sometimes a boss needs to reprimand a subordinate and that should be done in private. Or HR needs to have a meeting to talk about salary or n employee's performance.

So now instead of ensuring nothing is hidden, every time someone goes into the glass rooms and especially if they look grim, people start speculating what's going on.

I don't think it works at all.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

I've a Wii ...... Whee!!!!!

I've been so stress lately that I drag my feet in thru the door, drop my work bag and laptop and collapse onto the sofa.

So Paul decided to surprise me a few days ago and got me a ..... Nintendo Wii!

We've been looking at it for ages but I just could not bring myself to buy it especially since we have a PS3 already.

We spent last weekend at home playing bowling and tennis on the Wii.

He also bought the Wii Fit ad-on. Which we both love!

The Wii Fit told us our BMI, how much to lose / put on, how to correct our posture & centre of gravity, what are the areas we need to work on and a plan and timeline on how to achieve it! And even a virtual personal trainer to encourage us!

So I'm on a plan to put on 8lbs (of muscle) in 3 months. Now if only I can find the time and energy to use the Wii Fit after work everyday......

Well, at least I've the option to exercise even if it's only for 10 mins at home on the Wii Fit. Alternatively, I could play tennis, bowling, golf or boxing without needing to leave my living room.


Remember To Breathe


I sometimes need to remind myself to breathe.

And not only when I'm stressed or when I'm holding a tough yoga pose nor when I'm about to experience serious pain.

But it happens when everything is normal.

Sometimes I'm just sitting and watching TV or reading a book. Totally relaxed. Then my brain sends a signal "Hey I'm running outta oxygen. You need to breath!".

Then I'm like, "Oh. Breathe. Yes."

Then I take a deep breath and fill my lungs.

Does that happen to you?

Or is that just me?

Strange things like that happen to me for some reason or another.

Working 9-5

There was a time in my life when my version of a worst job ever was a 9-5 job.

I rather have a fun, casual working environment where we can go to work in t-shirts and jeans (even shorts sometimes!), throw paper airplanes (or just job requisitions squished up into a ball) at people or race around the office seating in office chairs (the ones with the wheels).

I could not work if it wasn't in an adrenaline filled, trouble shooting on the fly, never say die, time crisis environment.

But now ..... what I wouldn't give for a stable 9-5 job, with more annual leave (and not have to worry or make / receive calls when away on holiday), dental benefits and a bonus at the end of the year.

Of course with the state of the world, I must be dreaming to even imagine a cushy job.

People are losing their jobs and worrying about their rice bowls.

So no matter how tough it is currently, no matter how much I cry or no matter how much I doubt myself, it's probably still a better situation to be in.

That's what I keep telling myself.

Thank you to friends and readers for all your words of encouragement.

I'll probably emerge stronger after this .... but why put myself thru this shit??!!! It's not worth it!!! No no no wait ... pull back. Breathe ... yes I've been reminding myself to breathe a lot these days.

I'm just taking it one day at a time. Anyway with the unstability of the market, no point planning too far away anyway. Tomorrow is another day and I sure hope it's a good one!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Too Tired to Go For A Holiday ..... But Went For One Anyway

About 3 weeks ago, I blogged that I was too tired for a holiday.

But after looking at my condition, Paul said we just had to go.

It was also my belated birthday present, which by the way happened on 1st Feb but I didn't have time to blog about it. The past few posts will explain why.

I should blog about my birthday. Hmmm ... okay, later.

So last weekend, during the long weekend due to Thaipusam, Paul and I took off to Penang and checked into the G Hotel. It's the newest hotel along Gurney Drive. It's chic and modern. It maintains an air of classiness without the usual hotel stuffiness.

I slept (a lot!) and went shopping just next door in Gurney Plaza and bought 3 pairs of shoes in this place called Shoe Point which had nice shoes and most importantly, not available in KL. Im sick of shopping in Vincci and Nose and seeing another girl wear the same shoe the next day.

Ah, shoes! That's still a passion of mine and that makes me happy. Will post a pic of the new shoes later. They're prussion blue, canary yellow and pale gold!

We met one of Paul's friends and we did what Penang was famous for - eat. We went to a hawker centre and ordered char kway teow, tom yum soup, corn, muah chee, chicken wings, fried noodles, BBQ fish and more. Unfortunately, the food just wasn't that great. Not up to par to what I remember Penang's food as being anyway. What happened? Paul thinks the best hawkers moved to KL.

We also spent an afternoon at the pool side, driving around and I went to the spa too.

All in all, a nice restful lil getaway. It was a nice 3 days.

Unfortunately the first day at work after the holiday negated all the therapeutic qualities of the holiday.

I'm still in the office now. I better go innit?

It's the even of Valentine's Day too! But there goes our dinner plans.

Have a good Valentine's Day everyone.

Wishing you lots of love, hugs and kisses.

Promise I'll blog more and more often but for now, I better get back to my hubby. Toodles!

Is It Worth It?

Now that I'm in my 30s, climbing up the career ladder, holding a pretty high position and taking home a fair amount of $ each month, I'm asking myself .... "Is it all worth it?"

After 3 months into the new job, I can say with conviction, it is not.

I thought maybe it's me. Maybe I've not grown into the new role. Maybe my job scope is different now and I need to adjust. Maybe it's a new environment and I've not assimilated.

I'm feeling so much self doubt and anxiety. I work such long hours. And the worst thing about it is going home thoroughly exhausted but not being able to sleep cos my mind is still whirling from 14 hours of brain picking. So I end up with a lack of sleep but needing to start the next day with a run.

Being this high up in a corporation is new to me. So I spoke to a few friends. Friends who were older and had more experience in the rat race.

"Does it get any easier the higher up you go?" I asked them.

"No" was their immediate answer.

That doesn't help matters does it!

One friend suggested that I quit everything, move to an island and catch fish to feed myself. That's all well and good if i were white. But being Asian, that's just not in my blood.

Money is very important. But even I think you should not sell your soul for it.

"Is it worth it?" i asked a few other friends.

"No" was their immediate answer. Again.

So not only is it not worth it but it gets harder?

That's not nice at all.

So why do we do it? I don't know. All I know is that I go home and feel like crap everyday. I literally drag my feel through the door because I've that little energy left. The money in the bank at the end of the month is great tho. But is it all worth it?

Probably not.

No one ever said on their death bed, "I wished I spent more time in the office".

Again, then why do we do it? I'll go away and ponder about that now.


Was it really 3 weeks since my last blog? That's madness! But unfortunately very true.

It took an anonymous reader to post a comment, asking me if I've stopped blogging and that he / she missed my writing.

That gave me a jolt.

Writing and blogging is one of the joys in my life but like many things that make us happy in life, we don't seem to have enough time to do the. Why is that?

My days have all turned topsy turvy since I started this new job.

Just a few days ago I was in 7 hour meeting where there was no official breaks (but i got up and went to the loo anyway whenever I needed to) and there was no water served despite it being requested. But I got smart and brought my own mug (yes, to the client's office) so that I can easily access the water cooler.

That got me thinking. Maybe the client does not serve water so that everyone pees less, thus less toilet breaks are needed which results in more time spent in the meeting. A far out theory? Maybe. But why else would they do it?

A friend asked why they did that and commented that it's almost ..... cruel.

Cruel. Yes I think that's an apt description to what I've been subjected to the past few weeks.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Too Tired For A Holiday

My life these days starts out in bed where I toss and turn, fight the alarm clock and snooze for an hour. By 9am, I jump out of bed, get ready and hope I get into work before 10am.

I then work furiously and relentlessly for 10 - 12 hours with not much of a lunch break and then I'm home to meet Paul for dinner, a bit of telly then off to bed.

This is my standard schedule from Monday till Friday.

Come Saturday, it's usually spent running errands or cleaning the house.

And if we're lucky and there's no accessive errands or chores, we'll get to stay in on Saturday night and stay up watching movies and eating a barrel of KFC.

And Sunday is when we sleep in and laze around or meet friends.

So it's no surprise that I now no longer have time for sufficient sleep, to blog, check my facebook, or go to a spa.

Instead it's a race against the washing machine. How much can it wash and dry versus how much can I fold and iron? Can i work faster than it can spew out clean clothes?

I'm so tired, I don't even want to go on holiday. I just want to stay in and sleep. Paul was really sweet, suggesting that we go away for the weekend during my birthday. But I think a nice dinner and a good nights sleep would be the best idea yet!

Chinese New Year is in 3 days and I've yet to clean the house. The plan is to do it tonight and over the weekend. Not sure if that's enough time. But I'll have to do what I can.

Not looking forward to CNY. Really hot weather and lots of people to visit. Rather stay in, vege out on the sofa and watch a movie. And sleep.

Sleep is really all I think of these days.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Cutting Down on Smoking, Not Quitting.

Screw it! My quitting smoking strategy has changed. I can't sit around for 3 hours being totally unproductive while I suck on a straw and obsess about how badly I need and want a cigarette.

And I find that with a pack of cigarette in my bag, I'm able to function much better throughout the day and crave for cigarettes less. Sometimes I fell like having a cigarette but I don't, because I tell myself I can have one later since it's in my bag anyway. And by doing this, I'm down to 3 - 5 cigarettes a day. My usual is 7 - 10.

It's when there are no cigarettes around, that's when my mind stops functioning and can only think about smoking. It's madness! Trying to quit has taken over my life and i can't of nothing else but how badly I need a cigarette when clearly, I don't.

It's 6.30pm and I've only had 2 sticks today. Once after lunch. And once at tea time. Not too bad if I can say so myself.

It's in a bar (which I hardly go to anymore, yay!) or when having coffee with friends, that's the hardest to smoke just one.

Seriously ... coffee and cigarettes ... they go hand in hand.

Okay I know that cigarettes is bad for the body. But I figures I still really enjoy smoking. And if I stop cold turkey like I did for 2 days, it can lead to anxiety, stress, insomnia, and depression?! That's madness. Quite smoking for health but get a host of other illnesses?

So I figured that I'll still smoke (because it feels sooo good!) but only when I really want one and really am able to enjoy one. I shall no longer smoke because I'm bored or because everyone else around me is smoking.

I can now sit at a table of smokers and not smoke myself.


And the battle continues.

To everyone out there who's trying to quit, good luck!

Friday, January 02, 2009

Quit Smoking - Day 2

Since quitting smoking almost 2 days ago, my taste buds have totally cleared and everything tastes so good! Last night after dinner, I ate chocolate, biscuits and peanuts before bed. Today, after lunch, I finished 3 large slices of pannatone which I brought to work.

No wonder people who quit smoking put on weight. Everything tastes so good! And of course it also gives you something to do with your hands.

I've been reading a lot about quitting smoking. I know one can grow fat cos they eat more. But one could also get depressed! Quitting one habit to gain an illness is really not good!

I already feel agitated. And I've friends who are depressed. Depression causes you to not be able to function in normal every day life. Depression causes you to want to jump off buildings!

I rather be a smoker than a depressed person!

I'm going a bit crazy now. Paul's going to the gym. I'm going to go join him. Nothing like a physical work out to get the crazy thoughts out of my head. Plus after a work out, the fresh air in my lungs should negate any thoughts if beautiful grey clouds swirling around me forming a mist ..... argh! I'm going to the gym. Now!

Trying to Quit Smoking Since 1 Jan 2009

As of today, I've not smoked for 1 3/4 days. Almost 2 days! I decided that 1 Jan 2009 would be the date that I quit. I pressured Paul into doing it too because there's just so many reasons to do it with the first and foremost being wanting to be parents at some point in the near future. So its not for our health (smokers don't ever consider this a factor) but it's to give the kid the best start possible, from conception onwards. I'm also reading What To Expect When You're Expecting and will be interviewing OBGYNs soon.

So after our New Year Eve party which ended at 4am, I went to bed and woke up at 3pm. Paul and I cleaned up the house, went out for dinner, walked around for a bit and came back. Paul promised he'll quit after he finished his last pack. I said okay. Fair enough.

The first smoke free day went without a hitch. No cravings. No nothing! I thought it was pretty easy. If only.

Came into work this morning and greeted Michelle Who Stays on the Seashore. She quit on 1 Jan too along with her partner.

We went to make coffee in the morning as usual but didn't detour to the stairwell for our morning smokes. The morning went by pretty quickly.

Then we went for lunch. We had our usual cravings for a cigarette after lunch. But that's to be expected. Then we saw a couple of people light up. We tried to ignore them. I sucked on a straw. Pretending it's a cigarette. It worked. For a while.

It's really not so much the nicotine but the hand-to-mouth action and having something to do with your hands and mouth. It helps so much when you're in a ackward situation. Or meeting a new group of people who smokes.

Since coming back from lunch, about 3 hours ago, I've thought about smoking about 30 times. It's all consuming. I can't work. I can only sit here, suck on my straw and imagine holding a stick between my fingers, the bright spark followed by the fire, then the deep inhalation and my lungs being filled with cool menthol air. And when I exhale, the smoke coming out like a dragon, the smoke enveloping me like a beautiful grey cloud, lifting me senses......

I can't help it (furtively and desperately sucking on my straw)!

Since writing this post, i thought about smoking another 15 times.

Wow this is tough.

I know I've not posted much on the wedding or the honeymoon but seriously, I need to share with you my trying to quit smoking experience.

I think this is when the anger and irritation sets in.

I know this isn't forever. I really love and enjoy smoking but recently have been doing it out of boredom, to relieve stress or just cos of habit. I wanna trash all of that and smoke when I really feel like having a cigarette. That means a few sticks a week which I think is fine. But I really do need to quit for at least a few months before i pick up social smoking just cos I can. Or after the baby. Or something. I can't think anymore!

I feel light headed. I dunno if it's the withdrawal symptoms. Or me taking really deep breaths through my plastic straw. Or winding my legs too tightly against my body.

I need a cigarette! Now............................