Friday, April 28, 2006

Married but single

These days I feel like I’m living the single life again, which in many couples’ relationships would be longed for. There are pros and cons I suppose to having more time on my hands. I’ll start with the pros:

Why I should look on the bright side:
  1. I have all the time on my hands to meet up with old friends and do my own “thang”.

  2. No need to bother about compromising my schedule with other half since the only time I see his physical form is before I head off to work in the mornings and sometimes on the weekends.

  3. He doesn’t ask or nag me about my other activities since he’s too busy with his own – good, freedom to do as I please.

  4. I can start scheduling for practice sessions for salsa.

  5. I don’t have to rush back from whatever it is I am doing after office hours since the other half gets back later than I do (this will be especially helpful if I am going out for salsa on weekends).

  6. I can choose to watch whatever channels I like on the TV or DVDs if I like.

  7. I have the whole house to myself.

  8. I have more time to my reading.

  9. I can go increase my “network of friends”.

  10. Save the electricity bill since less one person in the house means less consumption.

  11. Ditto for food.

On the other hand, there should be cause for worry because:

  1. It feels like we’re both moving in different directions.

  2. If I’m living the single life now, what’s the point in being married?

  3. Since there’s hardly communication going on, it feels like we’re living our own separate lives.

  4. I may just get used to and start enjoying doing things on and for my own. I can see just where this could be a problem if I start being stubborn on compromising (I’m even starting to plan my holidays as if I’m going on my own).

  5. I don’t see where having kids in this situation is going to change or improve our lifestyle. Or even have meaning in this lifestyle. In a nutshell: there is no room for kids simply because it’s a shared responsibility; if I’m going to be stuck at home doing most or all of the work, then we can forget the whole thing.

Well, the good bits still outweigh the not-so-good bits, so I suppose I can go on like this for a while more.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

A dog named Oliver

There’s an interesting mention of a Weimaraner site was noted on

Actually, it’s of daily pictures of a Weimaraner named Oliver. Check it out. After riffling through this pictures, I thought I could do a daily of my cats. On second thoughts, it would be pretty boring as cats don’t get up to as much antics as dogs. Nor do they have as many silly faces.

I don’t know. I still may give it a go.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

In the name of pets

In keeping with the pet line of talk as per sis’ blog, yes…I think pets make a difference in a person’s life and yes, that it sucks that pets live far shorter lives than we do. I’ve always held the belief that dying is easier on the one doing the dying than the one being left behind. The same holds true for pets who leave us when their time is due.

The furry things in my house make a difference to my life because they’re the only live things with me when I’m home alone (which is becoming more of a norm nowadays). Unlike my sis’ cats, mine generally come when called. And the brown girl likes to be carried up and down the stairs whenever I go from bedroom to living room or vice versa. A different point of view, I guess? Meg likes to lick, which irritates me at times because a cat’s tongue is not something you want licking your leg. It’s like rubbing your leg with sandpaper, urgh! The brown boy is a gas to look at or to bully. He’ll plop on his back and expose his distended belly for all the world to see and I could basically poke, prod, push and shove him and he’ll still be this adoring puff of a brown fluff.

If I know I’m going to be out late at night, I try to stop by at home to feed the kitties first; I only give them enough food in the morning for one meal. The boy will gobble up everyone else’s food if there is too much left out. I have starved them on occasion but not very often.
Their other special traits are that almost all three of them will verbally communicate with me. Frankly, I have no idea what they’re saying but they usually answer me word for word when I “talk” to them. It is quite interesting. Any other person would probably think I’m off my rockers but well, like I said, they’re the only company in the house these days.

Better yet, the boy hold sentry in the bathroom when I shower. He waits near the sliding door or on the bathroom mat. He tends to the clingy side at times but it’s all good. Nothing beats a cat following you around.

In my current lifestyle I tend towards cats because they require minimum care, some attention and for the most part, are happily independent. Though my cats seem to lean towards dog-like characters at times (they come when called, even when I let them out in the back garden and they tend to be clingier than most cats). Unlike dogs, I don’t have to bathe them regularly, take them for walks or put up with a stinky dog smell if they are not washed. They require less attention as well. The kitties will find ways of amusing themselves and luckily, that doesn’t include sharpening their claws on the couch.

I can’t imagine what I’d do if the kitties are not around. I imagine I’d be devastated. I hope that won’t be anytime soon within the next 10 years.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Mundane updates

A few updates in my life so far:

  • We’ve got a cleaning lady to come in twice a week to clean up our mess. So far, she’s into her second week and doing quite a good job. For the first time since we moved in (that would be almost a year ago) my driveway was washed. She even rearranged our furniture!

  • Rehearsals for the salsa performance took a toll on my back. Dancing in heels is what caused the aggravation. As a result, I am thinking of stepping up my reflexology sessions to twice a week instead of once a week.

  • I have not been to Kino in a month!!

  • I have not done my taxes yet.

  • Being a latchkey wife is starting to get to me and I had better find other things to do during the weekdays instead of staying at home alone. So far: Monday dinner with friends, Tuesday hopefully get a reflexology session in, Wednesday drinks with the sales team after a workshop, Thursday salsa practice and Friday dinner with parents. Saturday another reflexology session and Sunday is open as of yet.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Meanwhile, in a washroom at Heathrow...

I didn't know...

...and I was too chicken to try it out.

In a different light

More random shots of London during my recent trip:

We passed this cinema on our way into Greenwich.

I took this for the cherry blossoms.

The cousin looking quite spiffy.

Parking is a bitch!

It's a bitch trying to blurdy park in certain buildings in KL, especially when you drive a tank like I do. The 7-series is wider than most cars and getting up and down ramps can make me break out in sweats. And if I get into those parking lots with where you have to park on moveable ramps, I'm screwed. 90% of the time, the blurdy car can't fit into the ramp width-wise and lengthwise. These are the buildings I would avoid at all costs:

1. Menara Promet (drive in there and you'll see why, especially when you hit the lower floors)
2. Menara Ambank (Jln Yap Kwan Seng: the only floor I can park on is the fourth floor; every other floor has those ramp things)

Bulidings I would rather not enter:
1. Menara Dion (blurdy cramped and narrow ramps from floor to floor)
2. The new wing of Centrepoint Bandar Utama (more of those moveable ramps; the car can fit, just barely)

I learned the hard way while circling around in the parking lot of the Ambank building on Yap Kwan Seng. I went all the way to the 8th floor before I decided I'd had enough of trying to get onto a ramp or circle around the 4th floor waiting for some idiot to get out. I paid RM2.50 after 20 minutes in there and parked across the road at Bangunan Getah Asli.

Someone should shoot the blurdy architects who design crap parking in buildings.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Camera trick

By a stroke of error, I set the digital on a weird mode. I still don't know what I did but i was trying to minimize the image sizes captured so I could maximise the flash card. Here's what happened to a few of my pictures instead:
Look who's crossing

Memorial of sorts

Through the Looking Glass

Handy if you're lost

Alice in Wonderland

It's a good thing the butcher's market's closed

A walk down memory lane

Thou shalt be the death of me

Pictures taken with the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T7

Friday, April 14, 2006

What's worse than this?

What's worse than being stuck at home on a Friday night? Home alone and sick.

The sky is always bluer on the other side

A few of my first series of London favourites...

Relative reflections

Level six but not quite there


A common sight

An egg landed in the middle of London

Imposingly Tate

Fort Minor

Pointing it out

Unusually blue skies

Terror Terriers

Pictures taken with the Lomo LCA

1. Sudoku; 2. Ada Apa Denganku?

Wish of the month: To be like Gregory House, M.D. – brilliant and not give a damn about what people think; no need for validation whether you’ve done good or done bad.

Current mental state: Rather squishy

Current craze: Sudoku (I took a free booklet from the exhibition I was visiting.) However, my mind stumbles into a mental block after the first puzzle; I can never solve the second puzzle after completing the first.

Am sad about: My current state of affairs.

Am thankful for: My kitties; they keep me sane even though one of them’s totally useless coz all she does is puke in places she’s not supposed to.

I wish I could: Disappear from the face of the earth for about a month. After that, who knows?

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Not all clubs with a Latin name plays salsa

You've gotta give me credit for trying. We started out at Latin Square at Faringdon. When Wolfgang was there yesterday, the people there told him there was definitely salsa on Saturday, which is why we went there in the first place. Cut to today, we were told there wasn't salsa, there was Date Dancing. To put it succinctly, imagine learning to salsa or tango and throw in some flirting classes as well. No matter, we had several tapas and four caipirinha each (who could blame us? it was happy hour). Wolfgang was unceremoniously turned down by the waitress when he tried to get the bill. I told him, 'Cash is King'.

So we trudged up Faringdon Street again to catch a bus past Oxford Street. We got off at Glassblower street and went first up, then down the street trying to locate this place where Gin thought this salsa place was at. No success. We even tried asking a few bouncers. Looks like Saturday night is not salsa night. We traipsed back to Oxford street towards Hannover Square and finally stood in line at this place called Fiesta Havana where the bouncer assured Gin that there was salsa. I had reservations because I could hear that irritating Rompe song playing downstairs.

10 pounds poorer and a loo break later, I figured it was definitely NOT a salsa place. Not unless you consider Jean-Paul salsa feast to the ears. It was crowded, people were gyrating and there were sleazy old men thrown in to boot. Wolfgang did his best: he merengued and salsa-ed to some pop-sounding crap. We took the floor (or whatever space there was of it) whenever a salsa song came on (and there were far and few in between), Gin got picked up (apparently the guy was Russian but we shooed him off) and I now knew why the mat sallehs drool everytime they're in Asia: British women look either like cows or horses.

So much for my attempt at salsa-ing in London. There were moments when I actually wondered if date dancing at Latin Square would ahve been more enjoyable. It was so bad, I actually had time to SMS Rizal and Aisha. I can frankly say of my foray out into the London salsa scene: Mission Unaccomplished.

The 3 (Nerdy) Stooges: Gin, Wolfgang, me

Friday, April 07, 2006

Stagnating in Wolverhampton

Wolverhampton is dead. After 5:30pm anyway. Unless you’re a pub crawler, there’s really not much to do. It’s too far a train ride (approx. 40 mins) to Birmingham, which is the most happening place on this side of the Midlands outside of London.

It is during times like this and in places like this that I’m thankful I live in the suburbs of KL. At least I can be assured of somewhere to go and something to do after 6pm.

WIFI is only available in the lounge of the hotel I’m staying in: Britannia Hotel. So I can’t very well head down in my pyjamas in the middle of the night.

When I arrived at Wolverhampton station, I wasn’t sure how far the hotel was from the train station, plus I had a really heavy suitcase to lug around (courtesy of the 2 packs of 2kg bags of milo I’m bringing my cousin) so I got a cab. When I got into the cab and told the driver I was headed to Britannia, he looked at me like I was insane? “Britannia?” he asked. Yes, I said. “It’s so near to the station!” he exclaimed. I was adamant on not having to lug around the blurdy suitcase after I’d lugged it up and down the Virgin trains from Watford Junction and during the one transfer at Birmingham International.

The taxi ride took all of 30 seconds. When they said the hotel was near on their website, they weren’t kidding. So I paid 3 pounds to the cab driver and had to find somewhere to hide my head. Hey, but anyway, he made an easy 3 pounds.

It is now 8pm and I am not sure where I’ll be scrounging around for dinner. If I’m adventurous, I’ll head to a pub, if not, I may take out a Subway. Nando’s yesterday was nothing spectacular. There was 1 chinese restaurant but it was not open yesterday. There are various pizza parlours and kebab places. There is an upmarket Indian restaurant. I am not sure what I’m up for. I shall have to take another walk around to decide.

I hope I get a better sleep tonight and not get awakened by the double deckers passing out my 1st floor window.

Movies galore on board flight EK001: Dubai to Heathrow

My plan to sleep on the Dubai – London leg totally flew out the window. When I happened across the movie list on the Emirates flight, I was a gonner. It is an extensive list of up-to-date English language movies, a venerable list of Hindi and foreign language films to boot. The best thing about the database is that you can start the movies from the beginning anytime you want, not like on some other flights where you can’t choose when to start the movie so you end up watching it from the middle, The whole seven-hour flight, I was awake and feasting on movies.

Movies watched on board:

  1. Trainman (Japanese) – my fave of all the movies I watched on the flight

  2. Fly, Daddy Fly (Japanese)

  3. The Gift (Japanese)

  4. Bcoz of You (Filipno)*

*I was totally, entirely smitten by this really cute Filipino actor in the movie, which is made up of three snippets about three couples. I can’t remember his name but he’s in the second snippet with the Korean/Filipino actress, whom I think the guys would think is absolutely adorable. Her name is Sanandra Park (I think that’s her name). But the guy is so totally adorable especially when he smiles. He’s got the cutest dimples. I’m so pathetic…

Am looking forward to the flight back to feast my eyeballs on even more flicks. Thank gawd I’ll be arriving Monday evening and that Tuesday is a holiday. I’ll need it to recuperate.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

I wonder what would happen if I threw a fit?

Being out of sorts seems to be my mental and physical state lately. Things hardly seem to go according to plan. Work is draining and I feel like I’m in a cesspool of mediocrity compounded by my feeling of being lost and directionless.

In three days I fly to Birmingham to try to close a deal which should have been a given a few months back. Due to a lack of communication and indecisiveness on the management’s part and the lack of focus on my part, it has now spiraled somewhat out of control. Let’s just hope I can salvage the situation before the shit hits the fan. Actually, the shit has already hit the fan, I’m just trying to prevent it from getting everywhere.

My mental state is drawn thin as a diaphanous membrane. Everything gets on my nerves and it takes the littlest thing to make me blow. I hope I can rein it under control in time to get the job done in Birmingham. My physical state is worse for the wear; my body seems to be rallying with my mind. Oh, you feel tired? Here, lets all of us arms, legs, limbs, eyes and the rest of us keep you company, my body tells my mind.

For the past two weeks, I’ve been interviewing for marketing people. It’s been a tiring process not only because interviewing takes a lot out of your psyche, but the candidates are below par. Even scanning their resumes online gives me the shivers: the generation today knows no loyalty. The average time spent at a company is about 1.5 years. It is not an encouraging trend for employers. One of my financial clients told me that they used to send their new graduates overseas for training the moment they got them in. The moment those graduates returned, they’d jump ship. So the company got smarter: they only send graduates who have served about a year or two at the company. They find that these graduates are more likely to stay after their training stint overseas.

I draw a parallel to this story with my sis. She’s been with two companies in about 2-3 years. And she can’t wait to leave the current company she’s with. Compare that with another friend and myself who were fool enough to take up the responsibility of helping run the family business. We’re both stuck for good, lock, stock and smoking barrel. We earn less than what the market pays, we have problems getting along with the parental units because of work, and we’ve realized it’s a grave we’ve dug ourselves in. It’s never-ending and we’ve got to learn to suck it all in. Some days it’s easier, other days, well…we have to deal with shit hitting the fan, fat ladies singing, and old dogs learning new tricks all at the same time.

Which all has a bearing on my mental state. I feel so exhausted. I really must find the energy and work up the stamina to go for the long run. Five years ago I told myself I’d give myself five years. Today, I’m still telling myself I’ll give myself another five years. I must make that five years a reality.
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