t-2 days  

Posted by Hyllma

Time sure flies when you least expect it. But for what it's worth, this year's school holidays was better than last year's, on so many levels.

First is because I didn't have to invigilate the SPM exams this year.. Sitting in a room, for 2 hours, sometimes more, going up and down the aisles, watching over the kids, and seeing that they don't cheat, is just not my cup of tea. Lucky for me, the bosses let me off this year, since I'd already invigilated the previous year. yeay me!

What's the best thing you can do during a school holiday? Of course, catching up on sleep is one of the most popular things people usually do when they have the chance. We initially made plans to go to Bandung and visit my sister there, but then the ticket prices were a wee bit out of our budget. So scratched Bandung off the list, and we looked for a place less expensive, but no less exciting. So in the end we decided (no, wait, my DAD decided on Pangkor). And we had fun there.

And I got to spend time with my best friend, doing absolutely nothing. Well, not exactly nothing. We spent time, hung out together, to just be. It was fun since I'd normally be busy the first six months of the year due to debates, and from July-October preparing the kids for exams (which includes marking TONNES of essays, riddled with atrocious grammar errors, God help me!)..So the school hol's the only time I get to spend with them without having to rush, or worry about meeting deadlines, or essays that I hadn't marked yet.

And it's new year in approximately 2 days (and counting...) So yes, it's that time of the year when people are busy making resolutions, hoping that all of them get fulfilled. Personally, though, I don't think New Year's the only time for a resolution. The important thing is not that you only wish for something to happen; but, rather, you take steps to make your dreams a reality. Which is what I'm planning to do. But I guess it's enough to wish that 2009 would be a better year for all of us (amidst all the terrible predictions I've read in the papers!)

Happy New Year, everyone! Have a wonderful, happy, and blessed 2009! :)

pangkor, part 2  

Posted by Hyllma

me and Emi on board the ferry to Pangkor

iklan sunglasses kat Jetty Lumut

with our tour guide, Syahril Teh at the Kota Belanda's 'Batu Bersurat'

Pangkor getaway  

Posted by Hyllma

My dad had been mulling the idea of going somewhere this school holidays, partly because it had been ages since the whole family went anywhere for a holiday. And partly because almost everyone is home this school holiday...

The Pangkor trip wasn't exactly planned a few months in advance, since our plans kept changing. First it was PD, then Melaka, then PD trip got cancelled, then was back on, you get the picture. So finally, Ayah decided to go to Pangkor on Saturday (and we were supposed to go on Sunday!), so imagine the scrambling my sister had to go through, just to book hotel rooms for all seven of us.

So yes, Sunday morning came, and we made sure everything was in order. Before leaving, we wanted to board Ennet at the vet's in Section 13, but we arrived a bit late, and it was already closed. Luckily, Jingles at Section 9 agreed to board Ennet although the lady had initially hesitated (especially when she saw that Ennet was expecting). Luckily,though, she gave in when we said that we'd pick Ennet up on Monday. Phew. One problem solved.

The Pangkor trip was memorable for a number of reasons. First is the fact that it was our first family outing since ages ago, and second, would be the fact that my dad lost his phone in the ferry; which could have been because someone pickpocketed him in the ferry, or while we were busy getting out. And i also rode the bicycle since ages ago. It was pretty weird at first, cos I had problems adjusting to the bike, but things got better from there. And the ride to the beach was wonderful. Partly because there was no traffic, but mostly because the scenery was just breathtakingly beautiful. (I wish I could upload the pics but I can't find my phone's connector cable. Next post, maybe...)

And of course, the trip round the island just before we left for the jetty was just great. Our tour guide, Syahril, next to being a chatterbox, was a veritable source of information about the island. We saw people boat building, and stopped at a factory at the island where they process marine products like ikan bilis, ikan masin,and the like. We also went to Kota Belanda, and Batu Bersurat (not like the one in Terengganu) and a Chinese garden/temple (can't recall the name) where we saw three arapaima fish swimming in the water. (You can also see them at the Senawang Giant)

So, yes, although the trip to Pangkor was a short one, it was wonderful. Just what we needed to let our hair down, and just let the world go by for a while.

Now, time to think of our next destination.... :)

a little tweaking...  

Posted by Hyllma

i bullied my little sister into editing some pictures i had uploaded off the internet. and asked her to make a collage of the three norwegian forest cats i saved. and the above banner is the result. never mind that my blog name is no longer visible, and is instead replaced by the word 'adorable' (which refers to the cats, not the blog!)

so yes, we're all still missing our dear jack. but as the saying goes, life goes on. and it is only fitting to hope and wish that jack is somewhere, in a far better place, free of the suffering he had had to endure since this past year.

going 'nasi-kandar' - ing tomorrow! (i think the guy at the nasi kandar place put ganja on his food. cos i sure am addicted to his nasi kandar---especially thinking of the huge serving they offer!!!

ode to a dear friend  

Posted by Hyllma

if you gazed into his silver-gray eyes, i'm pretty sure you'd be charmed.in fact, it was one of the first things that drew me to him. that, and his oddly dark brown/black nose.

he was like the little brother we never had. even though he was just a cat, he was treated like one of the family. we'd always remember how much joy he brought into our lives.

i still remember that day around a year ago, when the vet diagnosed him with feline aids. at first i was shellshocked, thinking how in the world it was possible for such a thing. but jack being who he was, fought on, armed with our love and care. when i brought him to the vet last weekend (since he had refused to eat), she herself was amazed that jack lasted this long.

anyone who knew or remembered him would be surprised how scrawny jack looked in his last days. i had a hunch that the end was coming, since his legs were clammy when i touched them. he had difficulty eating anything other than liquid food since his gums were swollen, and she didn't recommend scaling for jack given his weak physical condition. and she pretty much told me that there wasn't much that we could do for him, except offer him supportive medication. given the benefit of hindsight, i feel that the doctor just didn't want to tell us that jack's days were numbered. with a single digit.

it was difficult to believe that the jack that we knew, who was so rambunctious and jumping around pretty much everywhere was reduced to a shell of his former self. i still remember how he would wake us up every morning, and request for his water bowl, and wait patiently for us to feed him (at the dining table, no less!).

i fed him some soup last night, which turned out to be his last supper, around 8.00 plus, not too long after my family left for a forum or something at the umno shah alam building. i remember gingerly picking him up, putting him on my lap, and feeding tiny amounts of soup my sister made for him. and not long after that, he had a seizure. scratch that. two seizures, which scared the living daylights out of me, since i've never been particularly very good at taking care of cats. my experience of taking care of cats would amount to buying them food and making sure they eat. my sisters usually played nurses and caretakers to the cats.

so i did what i could to comfort him, which was to ruffle his fur and assure him that he was going to be okay, and put him back in the cage. i promised myself that i'd check back on him the next time i came down.

so after taking some cold medications, i went upstairs to watch tv, and rest. and when i came down, i was surprised when i saw his mouth was slightly open, along with his eyes, so i gave him a gentle nudge. and that was when i discovered that he was gone.

there is a certain finality with death. in a sense, i'm happy that jack is no longer suffering. but on the other hand, i'm sad that we've all lost a dear, fluffy little friend who brought so much joy and happiness into our lives.

rest in peace, dear jack. you're sorely missed.

too little, too late  

Posted by Hyllma

The country was recently shaken (literally) by news of landslips and landslides, one after another. I guess it's Nature's way of telling us that we have, indeed, gone too far.

And of course, in true Malaysian fashion, experts and politicians started spewing out comments, which I find not only irritating, but coming too late. Yes, the site of the Bukit Antarabangsa landslide is not too far from the Highland Towers site (1.5 km approximately), and residents have commented to the MPAJ but did anyone listen, take heed, or take stock of what happened in 1993? I don't think so. I think it's rather too late now to tell us that the soil at Bukit Antarabangsa is not stable, not suitable for construction, etc, etc. I'm sure we are very much aware of all that.

It's definitely the wrong time to be pointing fingers or passing the buck. Yes, the landslide happened. What is best now is to make sure it does not happen again. Perhaps the powers that be can think before they act/issue statements on how best to prevent the situation from recurring.

So, who's to blame? The developers, for wanting to cash in on the 'exclusiveness' of the area? The residents, for wanting to live 'an exclusive address'? Or the local council, for giving a nod for the project to go on anyhow, despite the fact that there are serious risks involved?

Of course it is easier to point the fingers at a, b, or c..What is difficult is to take ownership/responsibility of what happened.

Let's just hope that such tragedy never recurs. My prayers to those who lost their family members and friends. Al-Fatihah.

transporting disappointment  

Posted by Hyllma

I had the good fortune to watch the premiera of Transporter 3 at the TGV Sunway Pyramid the other day, and I walked out disappointed.

The truth is, I had been looking forward to an exciting time at the movies..Don't get me wrong, I did enjoy the movie, but then again...

I had enjoyed the previous two installments of The Transporter movies, and was hoping that this time around, it would be the same, adrenaline-pumping non-stop actions, thrills and spills.

The movie had plenty of that. Actions, fight sequences..but that was all. There was not much plot to begin with. If there was, it was simplistic, and so darn slow. I mean, why is it that I had to wait halfway through the movie to find out exactly what Frank Martin's assignment was? And the lines delivered by Valentina (I don't remember the name of the actress, which goes on to further explain why the movie wasn't all that memorable)- well, they were cheesy, and wasn't interesting at all. I mean, throughout the whole movie, she only talked about two things - food, and sex. Sex, and food. Smacks right off intelligence, don't you think? And throughout the movie, I felt like giving her a tight slap for being soooooooooooo terribly annoying (or maybe two, or thirteen...)

So there's my take on The Transporter 3. A lot of action, not much story (which reminds me of Wanted, which I watched not too long ago...)

Maybe it's better if you'd just buy the DVD version from one the apeks at the DVD shop. Then probably you'd feel less cheated off your money...

(temporary) blindness  

Posted by Hyllma

i'm one of those people who would be literally blind as a bat without vision aids (which in this case meant, most of the time, contacts!)

i hadn't really paid much thought to how much being able to see really meant. not really, anyway, until i discovered not too long ago that one of my contacts was missing. and i had already planned to go out with a friend tomorrow..so, let's see... imagine going round the malls, in, say, mid valley, with only approximately 50% of your visual acuity (and not to mention the headache that would ensue from all the squinting i would have to do!)

it's not like i've never lost my contacts before. it happened, quite a number of times, but most of the time i'd always have a spare pair handy, just in case. but it wasn't quite the case this time..cos i only brought home an extra pair (which i am currently using!) , thinking that i wouldn't need to bring home the entire two boxes since i was only going to be on leave only for a month. my gut was gnawing at me to bring the entire set, but i dismissed it without a thought. and look where it got me.

i guess it's true what they say- always trust your gut instincts.

so there i was, looking for a tiny piece of plastic (which had probably shrivelled, since i last put it on yesterday night before going out for dinner)..and my hands were all over the carpet trying to find where the tiny thing was. apparently, it slipped from my fingers when i was storing it for the night...

lucky for me, I FOUND IT!

so, moral of the story, don't bring home an extra pair. BRING TWO- JUST IN CASE. or, GET TINTED CONTACTS. like the big bad wolf in 'the red riding hood' said, "All the better to see..."