Sunday, December 31, 2006
A torn 50 MRinggit currency note. Don't know what happened to it. We found it among our late father's possession. The rest of the family said it cannot be used anymore. I can't believe my ears! 50 MRinggit may be nothing to the rich but it means a lot to the poor. There must be a system whereby the government would take back damaged currency notes - torn, scratched, scorched, smeared, etc.
Asked my friends, who worked in the banks. One told me maybe the bank that I frequent, might take it from me and give me a new 50 MRinggit note. Another said the only bank that would take it back is Bank Negara Malaysia (Central Bank of Malaysia). An officer in the bank that I frequented told me that only Bank Negara Malaysia would take it back and give me in return an amount, according to the damage.
In the state of Sarawak, the only BNM branch is in the capital city of Kuching - that is 1 hour by Boeing from Miri. In the neighbouring state of Sabah, the only branch is also in the capital city of Kota Kinabalu - that is 45 minutes by Boeing from Miri.
Well, since I am here in Kuala Lumpur, the capital city of Malaysia, I had the opportunity to visit the head office at Jalan Dato' Onn. We were lost looking for it, since we have never been there before. Glad we were lost because it gave us the opportunity to discover places of interest that I have not been. And happier still I got 50 MRinggit, not more or less, for the torn currency note.
I met one elderly couple who brought notes that have been torn and worn out, and looked like the cockroaches have their share on them as well. I am glad that BNM will be exchanging them for new notes that they could use.
Now, we know where to go to if any of of our MRinggit notes are damaged. We can also bring any old notes, that are no more in circulation, that we do not wish to keep or collect!!
Monday, December 25, 2006
There is always a first time in whatever we do. For me, this is first time I spent Christmas in Kuala Lumpur and the first time opening Christmas presents on a Christmas morning! Thanks to Lian again.
The first thing she excitedly said when she sat down in the sitting room was "Let's open the Christmas presents". It was fun, looking at each other's expressions and sharing/feeling each other's joy with the presents we got for each other.
As we feel the love and joy of this special day, my thoughts go to those who are homeless, poor, sick and lonely. For some, this is not a public holiday, life is just another working day so that they could bring food on the table.
Thinking of the less fortunate, who are struggling to earn a honest living, I am reminded that there is no need to spend unncessarily. There is no need to buy anything that catches our eyes even though we could afford to and end up collecting dust! There is no need to throw money to pay expensive branded things and found out later that the less famous and expensive made are as good!
Whatever our circumstances are, and whoever we are, I am grateful for the Christmas present that Heavenly Father has given each and everyone of us, all because He loves us.
Thursday, December 21, 2006
Christmas tree (and a real look-alike tree, that friends helped to cut) was a must in the house when Sis was home, when I was then only a teenager.
It sure radiated the atmosphere of Christmas with one in the house.
I didn't continue to put up one, when Sis moved away. I didn't feel the same desire because I was a teenager who was lazy to put up a tree and furthermore the only Christian left in the house.
I did look forward to the Christmas Eve midnight service and the Christmas morning service, so that I could join the choir and sing the Christmas songs!
Hopping from one member's home to another's and eating the whole day - that was fun too!
We are thankful for the knowledge that this is an important religious event - the coming of our Saviour, and why he came.
I shouldn't have let personal feelngs rule over me when I was no more a teenager and yet didn't put up a tree during Christmas either in my own home. Maybe the beauty of the tree would have cast away all the negative energy and prick a cord in someone's heart.
Thanks to Lian. Like her Aunty, she knows the magical beauty of a decorated Christmas tree.
Friday, December 15, 2006
You are alone. There is no pets. You did not step out of your main door for 4 full days (including nights). You stayed in, because you chose it. You did not talk to your neighbours through the windows. You only communicate via the fixed or the cell phone (verbal and sms), email, video or voice conversation via the hotmail or the Yahoo Messenger.
It felt terrible and lonely. The hours seem very long, even though you have the opportunity to watch the 15th Asian Games in Doha, or any other channels, in peace.
Definitely you have all the freedom and peace to do when and what you want to do, but you wouldn't want to try this. You could progress into a loner, selfish person, maybe a bore. You can die of loneliness if you continue this day after day!!
I am grateful that we have the freedom to walk out of that door.
Counting down. 16 days and it will be 2007. One year older definitely and hooooooooooopefully not one year more forgetful.
For the past few days, I got mixed up with my passwords. That is the problem with having different accounts in the internet. Today, I forgot a new password in less than 6 hours after I have changed it!! I was sure I typed in the new password but it was rejected. I have been able to solve the problem before but not this time.
No choice, but to write to Technical Support. Let's see how clever the system is.
Monday, December 04, 2006
I had in mind what to cook tonight - "Braised Pork with Black Mushroom in Black Soya Sauce".
Went to the grocery shop early in the morning thinking that I could choose the best. It was about 6:45 am and there was not a single slice of pork visible??? Asked the shopkeer and he said "no pork today". I remarked "then I better drive to Lutong (another pork outlet a few minutes drive away) to buy". The shopkeeper said "you would not find any pork in town today, unless the vendor is not licenced". I asked "why?" He said "they don't slaughter pigs today" "Every Tuesday they are off".
I didn't know Tuesdays is a off day for the pig butchers in Miri. This is new to me. I don't have a day set apart to buy meat and I am glad I picked today to buy otherwise I would not know when is the pig butchers' off day. I am going to find out when this off day started, just to satisfy my inquisitive mind! I wonder when is the butchers' off day in Kuala Lumpur? I am going to find that out soon!
Ended up buying beef instead and cooked "Stewed Beef with potatoes, carrots & onions".
Wednesday, November 15, 2006
What attracted me to the gospel of Jesus Christ? Hymns! Singing!
I was in the primary school and enjoyed singing so when a friend asked me whether I would like to join a Sunday afternoon school, a walking distance from where I stayed in Lutong. She told me there would be singing and story-telling so I accepted.
I liked Mr. King. He was "white-coloured, tall, good-looking, well-built", a very nice man and I enjoyed the lessons that he taught us. Yes, I could still remember his name and I wonder where he is now.
We were asked to memorize and recite the following verse and I could still recite it without looking at the scripture:
John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life"
I also remember the song that we were taught. This is the first song that I learnt about Jesus Christ:
Jesus loves me this I know.
For the Bible tells me so.
Little ones to him belong.
They are weak but he is strong.
Yes Jesus loves me. Yes Jesus loves me.
Yes Jesus loves me the Bible tells me so.
Both the verse and the song touched my heart and soul. Isn't it wonderful to know that there is a wonderful, perfect friend, in our Lord Jesus Christ, who is alive and although you cannot see him, he can see you and understand you, watch over you and most of all, love you for what you are.
You know when you are at that tender transition age, of growing out of your puberty stage to a teenager, when you believe something you just believe and you want to follow. Well, this may not applied to everyone, but at least for me.
Mum went to the Chinese temple and prayed often. I followed her, did what she did. I knelt down holding the joss sticks in my hands and bowed my head in front of the 'dieties'. Deep inside me I didn't feel anything and I did not have the desire to commit to this religion. Thanks to Mum, she did not force me or any of her children to follow her steps. I am grateful that she had given me the freedom of choice.
My eldest sister went to to church every Sunday morning and I also followed her. I went because I wanted to sing. It wasn't the people and it was definitely not the sermons because they were not inspiring to me.
I had friends in two different churches in Lutong. There were the only 2 churches in this oil town then. They asked me whether I would like to be baptised in their respective church and I asked them who they worship. One of them said they worship Jesus's Mother, Virgin Mary, while the other said they worship the Son, Jesus. I chose the church that worship Jesus because I have learnt about him at the Sunday afternoon school. I want to be a follower of the man who died for my sins. Other aspects that kept me going to the church was being a member of the choir and the Christmas carolling..
6 years later, another missionary came to Miri and again he was holding his sessions in Lutong and this time it was even nearer to where I stayed. They were holding their weekly evening sessions at a house which was claimed haunted. I could hear the singing and so I just walked over one evening. I would not have even if someone offered me money just to get near a haunted house during broadlight what more to say at night!
I loved the singing as usual. Some of my favourite songs were:
What a Friend We Have in Jesus
All our sins and griefs to bear
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer
O what peace we often forfeit
O what needless pain we bear
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer
Stand Up! Stand Up for Jesus!
Ye soldiers of the cross
Lift high his royal banner
it must not suffer loss
From victory unto victory
His army shall He lead
Till every foe is vanquished
And Christ is Lord indeed
Trust and Obey
For there's no other way
To be happy in Jesus
But to trust and obey
The people were nice and since I was older I started to understand and absorb the teachings and the gospel. I was feeling better than what I was feeling in the first church I knew. I attended their meetings regularly and when they asked me whether I would like to be baptised - I told them I have been baptised. They indicated to me from the Bible - Mark 1:9-10 "And i came to pass in those days, that Jesus came to Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptised of John in Jordan. And straigthway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon him:"
Jesus Christ has shown us that the proper way to be baptised is to be immersed into the water. So I agreed realising that my first baptism was improper.
I think I stop going to the first church after a year. It was not because I did not love Jesus or the people. It was because I felt that the gospel was somewhat incomplete. There were questions that I could not find answers to.
For the next 23 years I was busy with my job as a wife, mother, career woman that I did not attempt to go to any churches at all. I thought about God, about Jesus Christ, what I have learnt. Friends invited me to their churches but somehow I do not have the desire to join them. I prayed only occasionally. I didn't fall away. Spiritually, I was sleeping.
The desire of wanting to belong to a religious group was awakened when I stayed home full time. I have more time on my hands now and I started to feel empty inside. I wanted very much to go to church again to sing hymns. By then there were many churches in town. I did not have the desire to go back to the first church nor to the second church that I was baptised. During the 'sleeping period' I was exposed to other denominations, attended some of the functions there. There are friends in this denomination and that denomination. I like them. Which one should I go?
I did what 15 yr old Joseph Smith did in Spring 1820. I didn't know about Prophet Joseph Smith yet. In the privacy of my bedroom, I prayed to Heavenly Father. That was the first earnest prayer I had offered to Heavenly Father for a long long time. I told him my feelings leading to my desire to belong to His church and I asked Him to show me.
I never know that there was a Church in Miri called the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I had seen one 'White' couple but I had never seen any missionaries until one evening. They were walking pass the house. Me and my 2 children were playing with our dogs. They didn't stop at the gate. They were nice looking young men and you cannot help liking them so I greeted them. I invited them into the house.
Elder Redd and Elder Whitcomb introduced themselves as missionaries and asked me whether I have read the Book of Mormon. That was the first time I have seen the book. They left the book and assigned me to read some scriptures and we fixed another time for them to visit.
I accepted the book but I did not read it at all. They came to visit alright. The children and me enjoyed their company. They are so nice, you just cannot help liking them and wanting to serve them with food and transport.
It was the songs that attracted me again. I was touched by the lyrics. It felt so good to be back in the church singing again, even though the lyrics pricked my heart and made me shed tears. I enjoyed singing the hymns because this is one way I could express my love and appreciation to Heavenly Father.
Elder Redd was transferred and replaced by Elder Quinn. I was annoyed when Elder Quinn and Elder Whitcomb asked me whether I would like to be baptised, only after 3 lessons. There were 6 lessons. I cannot helped feeling irritated for being asked to be baptised when I do not know very much about the doctrine. I told the Elders not to push me and that I would tell them if I am ready. I also told them that it might take a long time (I had one year in mind).
Meanwhile the children and me were enjoying the company of the young missionaries and the couple missionaries.
It didn't take me a year to be converted. Less than a month, I decided I wanted to be a member of the church. The Holy Spirit witnessed to me the truthfulness of the gospel while I was watching a video at the chapel one evening. My heart was beating faster than normal as I watched the video. After the show, I blurted to the Elders that I would like to be baptised.
We planned tentatively for the baptism date. From that night onward, I started reading the Book Mormon. Regardless of whether I understood the verses or not, I read during the day and the night and whatever free time I had. This is another Testament of Jesus Christ and it jived with the Bible. I also got to read the Gospel Principles Book, and it reinforced my testimony of the truthfulness of the church.
I am thankful for the Prophet Joseph Smith, who courageously and obediently did accordingly to God's will in restoring God's church more than 176 years ago.
I am thankful to Heavenly Father for leading me to His church to learn about the Book of Mormon. It is here that I learnt that baptism is only recognised in heaven if it is done by an authorised priesthood because without this revelation I would not have consented to be baptised for the 3rd time. I am finally home because I feel at peace with everything you need to know about God, His Plan and What you must do to return to Him. This is where the crossword puzzle is complete - nothing is missing and all you need to do is to read the instructions and play. This the brightest bulb!
I say all this humbly in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
Friday, November 10, 2006
Diagnosis of the fragments of gastric body mucosa showed mild chronic gastritis. No evidence of atrophy, intestinal metaplasia or dysplasia seen. H. pylori - negative. I am glad!
No medicine was prescribed. I am to take "Omezole 20" if I still experienced heartburn. Doctor said it is likely that I am stressed. That has caused excessive production of acid in my stomach and thus the Acid Reflux Disease.
He said I frowned! Yes, I was serious when I was listening to his analysis and consultation. I must have look gloomy! Funny Doctor - he wasn't looking at me (only a little) when he was talking to me yet he can see me frowning!!!!!
Anyway, looks like I have to avoid certain kinds of food! And no food 2 hours before bedtime! Avoid chocolates! Avoid curries! Avoid onion, cabbage, cauliflower, brocolli, spinach!!!!!!!!!!!
Saturday, November 04, 2006
On the advice of Friday physician, I stopped taking "Xanax" and continued taking "Omezole 20". On the advice of a medical friend, I didn't take Milo or chocolate! I stopped eating 2 hours before bed. I had a good sleep last night, and I didn't had nighttime heartburn!
Today, my stomach still feels kind of funny. The heartburn is also felt after meals, but it is not as bad as yesterday. I took smaller quantity of food today and at a shorter interval.
I wonder whether I have H. Pylori. Bateria in my stomach - my goodness!
Friday, November 03, 2006
It wasn't as bad as I have heard and imagined!
The nurse sprayed into my mouth and throat. I felt liquid and swallow them - it was soooooooo bitter! It numbed my throat! It was as if the inner lining of my throat had ballooned. I found swallowing my saliva difficult. I had been administered with a local anaesthetic.
The doctor tapped the back of my right hand and gave me a small injection. The doctor said that was to relax me. I didn't ask him what is the name of the medicine. I guess I must have been administered with a "premed", a medicine, that I understood from the website, that would cause one to feel slightly drowsy and stop one from becoming anxious. I was more than slightly drowsy. I lost consciousness after I exclaimed to the doctor that the injection was painful. It is probably not 'premed'.
Woke up by the touch of the nurse arranging the cover around my body. It was about an hour after I fell asleep. I sat up, dizzy and cold. Told the nurse to switch of the aircon and laid down again to sleep for about an hour.
A foreign object was seen on insertion of the scope but not seen on withdrawal. The lower esophageal sphincter (LES), the stomach and the duodenum were normal.
I need to go back next Thursday or Friday. The result of the biopsy would be out. Meanwhile I am to continue taking the "Omezole 20" that I have bought from the pharmacist.
4 hours after the gastroscopy, I had a bowl of vermicelli soup. I was so hungry, having not eaten for 17 hours! And I didn't think that was a big meal, because I know it would hurt the stomach if I did. I thought I had something soupy with some carbohydrate.
My stomach didn't feel good at all even before I finish eating. The pain was still there after an hour. I don't know why I call the pharmacist instead of the doctor and on the advice of the pharmacist I took 2 "Omezole 20" capsules.
What is wrong with me? There is a strong possibility that I am suffering from Acid Reflux Disease! Got to wait for the result of the biopsy and that is 1 week to go. What is wrong inside me?
Thursday, November 02, 2006
Advised by the Saturday's doctor that I visited, to have a gastroscopy done. He gave the name and address of the private doctor, who can perform gastroscopy. After listening to my symptoms, today's doctor also suggested a gastroscopy - the only way to check out what is happening inside my stomach and my esophagus. I have heard about the procedure and read about it in the website and I am scare, very scare.
We agreed for tomorrow - the sooner the problem is detected the sooner the problem can be tackled.
I am scare but I must go through this because it is for my own good.
If Mum had been told how important she must take the medicines that were prescribed to her, she would have taken them without fail. She had told me a few months before her stroke that she felt uncomfortable taking certain medication and I told her she needed to tell the doctor. There were ifs.
If only I had surfed the websites for information of the medication, I would have advise her.
If only I had taken more responsibility and talk to the doctor attending her. She did not miss any appointments with her doctor and I have driven her when I am in town, ever since I moved back.
Did the doctor, nurse or the pharmacist of the clinic told her about the medicine, the side effects and the consequences of not taking them?
Did the medical staff expect that all the patients would take the medicine, faithfully, if they are not being informed adequately?
Probably there are too many patients - that is a bad excuse. Probably they think the patients wouldn't understand. They would, if the information are relayed in layman's terms!
Saturday, 28 October 2006
Visited a doctor for consultation. My gastric problem has recurred and this time it is bad, so bad that I worry continually and that in turn caused more acid production in my stomach! The gastric pills that I usually take did not work.
I was diagnosed as having heartburn, caused by stress. Yes, I had been stressful. I tried not to, but I can't help being stressful at times and that is when my body suffered. I feel worst when I am worried, cannot sleep and when I bottle up feelings that I feel nobody can understand or support. I feel my heart ache when I cried a lot. I prayed but I still feel miserable. I didn't attend the dance classes since Mother had the stroke because I didn't feel up to it, and that was a contributing factor to my stress level.
The doctor prescribed me 10 pills. I could not read the handwritting and I didn't asked what it was. I was to take 1 tablet twice a day. I asked the nurse whether I could take anytime and she confirmed anytime. I trusted and obeyed.
Tuesday, 31 October 2006
Woke up at 4 am by a very disturbing and uncomfortable feeling at my chest. Took 1 pill and that was when I felt the immediate effect. I was drowsy and fell asleep as soon as I layed down the bed.
I realised that was probably why I had been sleeping like a log for the past 3 nights! And I was sleepy during the days as well!
I rang up the clinic and asked the nurse the name of the pills that was given to me on Saturday. Looked up in the website and learnt that sleepiness is one of the effects of "Xanax"! And the nurse said I could take "Xanax" anytime!!
Can't trust anyone behind the counter, got to do somework ourselves!
Wednesday, October 04, 2006
The above date reminded me of the September 11 World Trade Center (US) disaster!
What is wrong with my NEC notebook, this morning? I left it for half an hour and the display left the screen as well! I came back but it didn't, even after I switched it off for a while and on it again! It got angry with me! So I rang the nearest computer shop I know. It was also the shop that we have bought a desk top computer from, once upon a time. He said bring it there and they would check.
I had run out of Black Ink cartridge a couple of days ago and I was going to purchase it this afternoon, from another computer dealer, whom I bought the Canon BCI-24 printer.
Well, since the computer shop is on the way to the computer dealer, that suits me perfectly. The technician at the computer shop checked and reported that the notebook was okay but the LCD was spoilt. They said that it would cost me over 1K to have it repaired and even then no guarantee. They suggested 2 things (1) to cut off the LCD part, buy a separate stand-alone LCD + keyboard + mouse (amounting to about 800 MRinggit) and connect it to the notebook (using it as the CPU) alternatively (2) to buy a brand new notebook (they said this is the best option), price ranging from 2,XXX to 5,XXX MRinggit.
Both proposals did not appeal to me. First proposal - I can imagine how my computer desk would look like and didn't like it. Second proposal - I don't need a sophisticated expensive notebook.
I said I would think about it. I left for the Canon printer dealer, with the intention only to purchase black cartridges. Looking into their shelf, my heart skipped as I saw NEC products displayed. I asked the boss whether they deal with NEC computers and if they repair them. Yes, they do! You can imagine how happy I was when the technician spotchecked my notebook and reported that the display is dimmed only (he can see, I cannot!) and that it was possibly to rectify.
I collected back my NEC book 10 days later, because the spare part had to come from Kuala Lumpur. It cost me 200 MRinggit to have my LCD working again! I didn't have to cut off the LCD or buy another notebook! This old NEC notebook will do just fine!
Tuesday, October 03, 2006
I am thankful to know that I have a loving Heavenly Father who knows me and loves me.
I am thankful to know that I am a child of God.
I am thankful to know that I can return to my Heavenly Father and live with Him again.
I am thankful to know that families can be together forever.
I am thankful for all the blessings that God had given and will give to me.
I am thankful for the trials that I have to go through in this mortal life.
I am thankful for the love that Jesus Christ has shown me, for his atonement of my sins.
I am thankful for my father and mother who teach me about love, loyalty, faith, dedication, sacrifice, work ethic, self-reliance, etc. etc. etc. etc.
I am thankful for my sister and brothers who teach me about team work.
I am thankful for my husband who has contributed to what I am today.
I am thankful for my children who teaches me that one is never too old to learn.
I am thankful for my friends who showed me how to relax in the midst of afflictions.
I am thankful for friends, that I have never met, and may never meet, yet believe me for what I related to them.
There are so many things to be thankful about.................................................
When upon life's billows you are tempest tossed
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost
Count your many blessings name them one by one
And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.
Tuesday, August 15, 2006
Another tag! Thanks to my dear Lyanne.
10 YEARS AGO I WAS ...
.......... packing up my things at a company that I have worked for over 21 years and wondering whether I have made the right decision to quit and becoming a full time homemaker.
........... was sailing a rough sea.
........... unhappy with the telephone bill, for charges that I felt was not fair.
........... sad (every day I come home sad) seeing Mum .............................. and miss talking to her and going out together.
........... Love Theme from "St. Elmos Fire
........... After the Love Has Gone
.......... Where Have All the Flowers Gone?
.......... Do Re Mi
.......... I am a Child of God
.......... Rose Garden
........... Lyanne, Anthony (and many more other people, including you, my friend)
........... Dancing, Singing (and many more other hobbies)
........... Teaching people to dance (seeing them dance happily)
........... My Mother
I didn't know exactly what 'tagged' mean, until Lyanne explained to me. Milky Bar Kid had tagged me with the following:
1. Grab the nearest book.
2. Open the book to page 123.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the text of the next
3 sentences on your blog along with these instructions.
5. Don’t you dare dig for that "cool" or "intellectual" book in your closet! I know you were thinking about it! Just pick up whatever is closest.
6. Tag five people.
The next 3 Sentences after the 5th Sentence of page 123 of the Book of Mormon:
And now I, Jacob, spake many more things unto the people of Nephi, warning them against fornication and lasciviousness, and every kind of sin, telling them the awful consequences of them.
And a hundredth part of the proceedings of this people, which now began to be numerous, cannot be written upon these plates; but many of their proceedings are written upon the larger plates, and their wars, and their contentions, and the reigns of their kings.
These plates are called the plates of Jacob, and they were made by the hand of Nephi. And I make an end of speaking these words.
I can only tage the following 2 persons, the other people I have in mind have been tagged:
Dad the KL City Kid
Thanks to Milky Bar Kid. Have fun!
Monday, August 07, 2006
It is one month since Mum had stroke. Diagnosed with brainstem Infarct, due to hypertension, and is now completely dependence and bed-bound, she was discharged (after 2 weeks at the General Hospital). Nothing more can be done, medically. It is now down to us, to nurse her at home.
As we took care of Mum day after day and looking at her almost lifeless, except for her hands, feet and eyes movements (behind the closed lids) at certain times of the day, I am wondering whether she is really in coma. Mum didn't choose to be like this. Mum would rather die than be in this state. She has always been an independent woman and reminded us to be self-reliant always. She is always on the move despite her age, planting vegetables, flowers, etc. etc. She was not prepared to be like this and we weren't as well.
It breaks my heart to see her nauseating when the nurses inserted a new NG tube through her nose and down her stomach on the day of her discharge. I asked the nurse "why?" and they said this is a common response of the patients.
I know this is part of our trials on this mortal world. But I still wish Mum did not have to be afflicted like this. If her spirit is in this body of hers now, I know she is crying out for release and I wish God will just take me and spare Mum.
I don't want to be like this. I don't want to die like this. If I ever have a stroke or afflicted in any other ways whereby I am totally dependent on tubes, etc. I want to be put to sleep. Is it against Heavenly Father's law? Wouldn't I be taking my own life and taking a easy way out of my trial in this mortal world?
Wednesday, 9 August 2006
I was thinking of the question. I know the answer! Regardless of what some of the world thinks, the answer is NO NO NO. I am not allowed to choose the way I want to die. That is accordingly to God's will. He has a reason and purpose for everything.
Monday, July 17, 2006
It is over a week since mum had a stroke. She didn't fall down. She wasn't sick. That very Saturday, 8 July, morning she had been at her garden. She had spoken with my eldest sister-in-law on the phone before she had her afternoon nap. The stroke came like a thief in the night, while mum was having her afternoon nap. The next thing was my youngest sister-in-law applying pressure on her chest and calling her to wake up. She was taken to the GH by an ambulance and since then have'nt open her eyes yet. Doctor said something about brain stem and that she might remain in this state indefinitely.
Medically, I don't understand exactly what is happening but I do know that Mum might not be able to see or walk again, that she would be bedridden for the rest of her life, that she would be fed through the tube, etc. It is heartbreaking to see her in this stage of helplessness. Is it another trial for her and for all of us?
Sunday, June 25, 2006
These mangoes must be waiting for me to take picture of them! I have said that I wanted to take a picture when Uncle Ni and Sister Monica were here!
Little Clinton was asking me "Aunty, when are you going to take a picture?" I better do it before they are all gone from the branches. I can't remember when was the last time Mother's tree had so many!
Mother has 2 big mango trees, that are over 20 years old and are still fruiting. They are different types. Mum would collect the ones that had dropped to the ground and sell them. They smell good, taste good and there are no worms!
Monday, June 19, 2006
Death is part of life. If we read the newspapers, we would see death announcements everyday. I hardly buy the newspapers now since I could access the news from the internet.
Today, the news came to me in 3 different forms: telephone, email and person:
Morning: Gan phoned me last Friday and I agreed to meet him, at his office, this morning. He said he would be in between 10-12 am, but I thought I phoned and doublechecked. He had wanted to meet with me since our last meeting on the 17 March but I was away from town.
I couldn't believe my ears! The receptionist answered "Gan had passed away". I said "Are you joking?" "I spoke to him only 3 days ago." "When and what happened?" She said "During the weekend, heart attack". I think I said to her a couple more times "True kah? How come?"
Afternoon: Jackie emailed me and informed me that Chiam's father had passed away. I don't know Chiam's father but I know Chiam.
Night: Looks like there was something going on with a neighbour. Canvas were set up outside their house. There were tables and chairs. I had to be guided while I reversed out of my garage so as not to knock the cars that were parked in the narrow street. I asked another neighbour "What happened?" He answered "Chua had a heart attack this morning". I know Chua.
Gan's death had an effect on me, which no other deaths had. He was someone I had put off meeting with until this morning and our meeting will be forever put off! Life is unpredictable. It is not according to our will but God's will. Gan didn't expect that he would die. He had promised to meet me! Let us do what we want to do and can do, as if today is the last day!
Wednesday, May 31, 2006
I was careless! I tripped over a chain at the Miri City Fan. I had wisely walked around the chain when I passed the entrance, to take pictures of my mother, uncle and sister from across the road, opposite the Chinese garden. But I didn't walk around when I returned.
The next thing I knew was my face is on the ground of the walkway to the Chinese shed.
Sister was at my side, asking me whether I was feeling okay, whether my eyes were okay.
The lower part of my left palm felt a little painful. I guess I have stopped my fall with my palm. It happened too fast. My right hand was holding the digital camera. The right hand and the digital camera was alright. But the right glass of my spectacle shattered - the pieces were on the ground.
(The pair of spectacles was only less than a month old! I had collected it at Sungei Wang, Kuala Lumpur, on the 8 May.!
I touched my forehead. It felt like a lump! And big as well! Uncle Ni told me to sit down on the bench of the Chinese shed and he would apply his 'chi kung' on me. He used his 'qi-gong' on me for a few more times that day.
Mother and Uncle do not know how to drive; Sister was not familiar with the car nor the roads. I was thinking who I could phone for help. In the end I wore my spectacles (with one glass on the left only) and drove home. Funny, the right eye adjusted itself. It was as if both sides of the glasses are intact!
Thank God, my eyes were okay! And I am okay too. I didn't feel any giddiness.
Tuesday, 30 May 2006
"Qi-Gong" worked! The lump was almost gone but................ I look terrible this morning. The area between my eyes felt swollen and blue marks have appeared on both sides of the nose, around the eyes! Looked like I have been abused! Have met some people who have looked at me perculiarly. I wonder what are in their minds? Birthmarks, abuse, domestic quarrels..........................
Thursday, 1 June 2006
The forehead looked and felt better. The marks around the eyes are not blueish anymore, but reddish.
My eyes! I had double eyelids - where are there? Don't know how long will it take for me to fully return to normal?
Well, that teaches me to be more careful next time. But............I am thankful that my nose was not broken!
Saturday, March 04, 2006
Thursday, February 16, 2006
Happy Valentine's Day! Chinese people, especially those whose parents who are not 'English' educated, are not brought up to say "I love you" or show any affection in public, even if it is just holding hands. Definitely not the older generations. Unless their mindsets have been changed, they will die, bringing their feelings with them. Their loved ones will never hear them say those 3 magical and most powerful words "I love you". If you asked them, they would say "Isn't it obvious? Why I am working my bones out for?" If you try and hold his hands in public, he became stiff. As you both grow older, the distance of walking together becomes further. He would walk so fast that you almost have to run! Is it shyness?
Definitely not so, when it comes to expressing on writing with someone you don't have to face. I didn't get any card or flowers this year. I have never receive any flowers on past Valentine's Days, but I did get cards from my children and some friends! Anyway I don't care for just a day of expression. The business people are happier this day! Valentine's Day is created and celebrated by the Europeans, never by the Chinese (until now). Have the Chinese become romantic?
I got a shock this day. An e-mail came from a Hongkong man, whom I have never met before, wrote "I love you". Just that 3 words, nothing more or less. Out of curiosity, I accepted to chat with him on the Messenger. He has fallen in love with my photo, at first sight! Yes, my photo! Not me! We chat like chicken and duck even though we are both Chinese. He understand little English and I understand little Mandarin! I wonder if he knows what is "I love you". Talked about Valentine's Day - that is my present, eh? He is welcome to my photo! It is only a photo!
Friday, January 20, 2006
Rain, rain, rain; the months of December 2005 and January 2006 have been wet. Almost every day it rained. If it is not in the morning, then afternoon or night.
One thing good about the present weather is that the soil in my backyard did not favour the growth of the weeds. Unlike when I was away in Kuala Lumpur and came back to find the small garden filled with unwanted plants where it took me the whole morning to clear them. This moring it took me half that time to clear the weeds and loosen the soil.
I think I am beginning to enjoy gardening because of the beauty of the flowers that are blooming from the plants that I planted myself.
Sunday, January 08, 2006
Final night of the singing competition, of the
In the Mandarin section, I sang “心上人” (sound like “Sing Sun Lern” literally in English mean “the person of my heart”)(by Chang Siao Ying) and got 3rd. My prize was a fountain pen and a bottle of ink.
In the English section, I sang “All I have to do is Dream” (by the Everly Brothers). I thought I did very well but alas! I didn’t get a prize! But nevertheless, an enjoyable experience.
19 July 2011 - Thanks to JosephBHC. He related that we had to draw to see when was our turn to sing. I forgot I had drawn No. 1, so I was the 1st one to sing! JosephBHC sang too. He sang "往事只能回味"
Thanks JosephBHC for the following translation of the song you sang:
Time Passed will never return, the past left only Memory. Our childhood is like time that passed without return, the past left only memory. Remembered the puppy love when we two were together day and night. The Spring breeze have blown red the flower bubs, you also added another year on your age. You are going to change like time that past without return. I can only be with you in the dream.
Then there was PeterL, JohnC, KCFook, CWCheong, IbrahimK, AlisonCFY, MaryS. And then he said one of the Form 4 students sang "I started a joke" (Bee Gees). Thanks, Joseph, for helping to update my blog posting with the additional information you provided. THANKS A LOT.
22 July 2011 - Got an update. I love this! AngelaG, my classmate, said she sang "500 Miles" (by the Brothers Four), a folk song that the old and the young likes to sing. Yay! Thanks, AngelaG.
6 December 1971
School Leavers’ Campaign – Social Gathering – Miri Community Hall. My singing fever has not subsided and so I volunteered to sing again the English song that I sang at school, even though I did not get a prize.. I just like “All I have to do is Dream” so much. Good thing, it was not a competition.
I don’t remember exactly when. No photo no record. But I do remember taking part in a singing competition at a fun fair, organized by the Lutong Jaycees in Miri. Another attempt singing in public. This time I sang “Paper Roses” (Marie Osmond). Frankly speaking I was nervous but didn’t go flat as in the following year.
Sunday, 4 August 1974
Singing competition organized by the Lutong Jaycees at the Miri Community Hall. Chose “The Twelfth of Never” by Donny Osmond. How did I do? Well! I went flat and got booed! Luckily I was not thrown with rotten eggs or anything else, hahaha.. That was the last time I took part in a public singing competition. Would I do it again? Maybe, if I have enough training and courage.. Would I continue singing? Yes, of course!
30 years later. No. I have not taken part in any public singing competition. I am happy just to sing with my friends at the karaoke lounge, party, home and church.
“Sing, sing a song, sing out loud, sing out strong…………………………………
Sing….. Sing a song….Don’t worry it’s not… good enough for anyone else to hear, just sing….Sing a song…. (by the Carpenters???)
Monday, January 02, 2006
Today, I am inclined to share three of the gestures of my friends. Gestures, that naturally come from their characteristics, which they displayed with no expectation of any rewards in return. Gestures, that they (the givers) have forgotten about but I (the receiver) will always remember.
Saturday, July, 1987 – Miri - A Birthday cake!
My birthday! I was on a trip to Mulu caves with my friends. Didn’t announce to any of them that it coincided with my birthday. Don’t want them to bring any presents for me either. This trip itself was a birthday gift to myself, to be get out of town and explore.
It was early in the night. We just sat around the dinning hall and enjoy each other’s company. There was nothing else we could do. Can’t go walking – too dark outside. The other lights in the vicinity were from the other hostels. We were surrounded by jungles, river, sounds of birds!
Jackie said: “I have a surprise. Wait” She walked out of the hall and came back later with a box, undeniably a cake box. She placed it on the table and called everyone to gather around. She asked me to open it. My heart beat fast because I guess it was for me. Jackie knew the date of my birthday and she had noted the date of the trip. She didn’t tell anyone else. She wanted to surprise me. “Happy Birthday, Irene”, said Jackie.
I will never forget Jackie for that surprised birthday cake. Believe it or not, I had never had a birthday cake until then and it was my first and most memorable one.
Thank you, Jackie.
Thursday, 1 July, 1994 –
Vacation, with my family, in
We had to pass the sitting room and the kitchen as we descended the stairs of the terrace flat. Jessie handed me a plastic container and told me that it was for us to eat at the airport. She is a soft spoken lady and she did not tell me what was inside. I didn’t ask her either, only thanked her and said goodbye.
We have gotten fed up with burgers, fish and chips and any other English food. Chinese food is expensive and not nice here.. What did I find in the plastic container that Jessie gave me? Boiled rice and fried fish. No wonder I smelled the aroma of fried fish when I was in our room upstairs. Jessie was secretly preparing food in the kitchen for us. In
Thank you, Jessie.
January, 2005 –
It was past 11:30 pm at night. Unable to sleep, very upset emotionally, confused, and if I don’t let those feelings out, I am going to suffer depression and who knows what! Because of hurt, self-pity, loss of self-confidence, loss of reasoning sensibility, reality, enveloping anger or whatever negative feelings, I might commit some undesirable and regrettable acts. I had to talk to Agnes.
Agnes has been my pillar of strength and comfort. I had known her for over a year and we have grown close to each other. Although busy with her life as a single mother, she was never busy to take my calls and listen to me. I know if I asked her to help she would do so.
Agnes was not in bed yet. After listening to me, she said “Irene, I am going to drive over to your place after I have picked my son back home”. I told her that was not necessary because it was almost midnight and that I would be okay after I have talked to her. Tonight, she felt that she needed to come to me. She was worried that I might unthinkably do something foolish. She came as she said, visited with me until she knows I am sober and composed. It was almost 01:00 am in the morning when she left.
Thank you, Agnes. Change the last letter of her name to ‘l’ and she has all the letters to the word “Angel”.