Memory.. Little threads that hold life's patches of meaning together. ~ Mark Twain

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Operasi Gemuk Begins

I'll be going for the gown fittings end of next month, then photoshoot will be the week after that. I have 1 month to gain weight (so that can fit nicely and no need to alter so much la). The thing is, I'm reaaaaally underweight. I need about 10kgs to reach the ideal weight, but I'm happy enough if I can reach 5kgs. I have a pretty small stomach, so I can't eat a lot at one go, as my body so 'pandai' can automatically reject the extra food (and I'll end up getting real sick like how I was more than 2 weeks ago). But I get hungry very fast. I can still munch on lighter things even when I'm already full, and usually after 1 hour or so, I'll feel like eating again.

The only times when I managed to gain weight were when I was studying in Sheffield. When I was there, I easily gained 5 kgs. But each time I came back home, I'd lost them all. *sighz* So depressing, eh?

Maybe I'm not eating enough. Maybe I should follow back the lifestyle I had when I was in Sheffield. Let's see.. On weekdays..
Breakfast : 2 half-boiled eggs, a bowl of cereal and a cup of hot chocolate.

Take a 40 minutes walk downhill from my place to the campus.

During each lecture : A bar of Snickers (5 bars for £1 at Jack Fulton, so cheap!).

Lunch : Prawn mayo or turkey ham sandwich from the cafeteria.

If it was my turn to do marketing, I would take a 15 minutes walk to the market (in the city centre) with Chino. We would buy food supplies enough to feed 6 people for a week (like, 6-8 dozens of eggs, can you believe that?), including whatever extra supplies all of us need. Then we carry all of them to the nearest bus stop to go home.

Otherwise, I would walk back home with whoever was going home at that time. So 40 minutes walk uphill. We would stop by at Broomhill Friery to buy huge packets of salted chips to munch on the way back. Or stop by at Somerfield to buy more groceries and carry them back home. I really had muscular arms and legs with all that exercise, kay!

Teatime : Munch on cream biscuits (5 packets for £2) and a cup of hot cocoa. Sometimes I would dump frozen lasagne or Shepherd's Pie into the microwave to reheat.

Dinner : Heavy homecooked meal for 6 people (we use a lot of eggs in our cooking!). All 5 of them are really big eaters (what do you expect, they are guys!) so I have to eat as much as them. Then we would provide fruits for each other (Granny Smith or Royal Gala apples, bananas, grapes, Clementine oranges, etc) or even ice-creams while we watch tv (especially football) in the kitchen.

Supper : Munch on more cream biscuits, ice-creams and a cup of hot chocolate.

Weekends were usually "sik ji kei" (loosely translated as "eat yourself"). I would usually feast on frozen lasagne, Greggs' Prawn Mayo sandwich, Shepherd's Pie, fish & chips, spaghetti (with cream of mushroom soup and lots of turkey ham) or porridge. Suka-suka, we would cook for each other as well. If you accept Tai Lou's Maggi Mee goreng, he would add a lot of stuff in it - Prawns, ham, egg, mixed vegetable, and chicken - enough for 2 persons of my size!

So, do you think if I follow like this, I will be able to gain weight? I am going full force for the Operasi Gemuk now. Nowadays, I'm making myself have a cup of Milo and cream bun for breakfast. Sometimes got currypuffs or 'lobak kou'. Then have nasi lemak (usually 2 of the small packet ones) or noodles for lunch. In between meals, I would munch on chocolate, biscuits or more cream buns. Dinner is alwways home cooked meal. Then at night, I would munch on ice-creams, fruits, biscuits, chocolates, desserts, 'tong sui', whatever that comes my way. Hehe..

How ah? Any professional advices? Appeton Weight Gain didn't help. And I'm too lazy to go to the gym to pump up my muscles. How ah? I've got 1 more month to go!! Help!

Friday, February 17, 2006

Batman In The Building

We have a Batman in our office, you know or not? He likes to hang out at the covered carpark lot, always in front of a certain department (maybe a lot of 'leng luis' there?). He's so quiet that none of us would have taken notice of him unless we're really that observant. So quiet and motionless that we do not know if he's dead or not...

Batman Close Up
Mr. Batman

What, did you really thought Batman exist?? *grin*

Labu actually noticed its existence when we were walking towards my car early this week. She being the 'kay poh chee' type, was curious to know what was that brown-brown thing hanging on the ceiling beam. "Patchee, It's a bat laaaaaa!" We kept asking each other (and the rest of my colleagues the next day) where in the heck did the bat come from (coz our office is basically in an industrial area, there's no caves nearby also)... What is it doing up there.. And all that. We found it really suprising it's there in our building, coz really, the only times I've seen bats were when I went up Batu Caves for a school trip many years ago, zoo or on the telly.

According to a few of my colleagues, it's been hanging there for a couple of months already. The rest of them didn't even knew it was there until I asked them about it. We all do not know if it's dead or alive. We know that bats sleep like that, hanging upside down. But if it's still alive, why is it hanging at the same location the past few months? My colleagues (the ones that saw it first) felt that it's been staying on the very same spot the whole time. If it's dead, then it should have been rotting by now. But we do not dare to poke it with a stick. Scared laaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa..

Some say it's a bad omen to have a bat flying into the house or something. Izzit?? Could this coincidentally bring to the fact that today's count, 8 people has tendered their resignations. 8 is deemed a lot for us, considering it's a really medium-sized company. Koala Bear's the 8th person, handed in his letter to Dexter early this morning. I knew about it coz he's mentioned to me for months now that he's really planning to quit and so I knew beforehand that it's gonna be today. So sad.. In a month's time, I will not see Koala Bear, who sits beside me on my left, dozing off after lunch breaks. I will not have someone to bug to whenever I am stuck in my projects. As much as I kept telling him to delay his resignation and that I will sulk whole day long, I know that he deserves a much better treatment and credits than what he's been getting here. And I hope that he'll have a better future in whatever he chooses to do and wherever he wants to go.

Until then, I'm gonna terrorize him a lot coz I for sure will miss having him as my colleague, and I am glad to have him as a friend.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

'Throw' Fortune Into The House

Last week when Mum had a mini lunch party at home, Dad organized an event for all of us to participate in - throwing mandarin oranges and coins into the house. We had been doing this for the past 1-2 years. Something fun la. And since the house (the one Inspector and I got) has already been renovated, Dad thought it would be great to organize that for us.

I really do not know how this activity originates from though. What we should initially do was to prepare an amount of coins and mandarin oranges. For today's case, Dad prepared 100 pieces of 50 cent coins, and 68 pieces of 20 cent coins (168 piece in total - 'yat luk fat' - always got good fortune), and I bought a box of 18 mandarin oranges. Last week, Dad used 100 pieces of the RM1 coins (Yup, he still have lots of them!).

This is what we do.. Lay the coins and mandarin oranges in a huge metal tray, and put it out under the sun for about half an hour, at least until they are slightly hot. Put a pail of water under the sun as well. Once the water is slightly warm, use the water to mop all the floors in the house. Then when the coins and oranges are warm also, put them into nice cointainers - like a bowl for the coins and a basket for the oranges.

Kam Ngan 1
Gold and money waiting at the main door

Wait until all the guests have arrived, then make them stand outside the house main door. Put the bowl of coins and basket of oranges at the front of the main door. If you like, play the lion dance music (for some noise). Then get the guests, one by one, grab a handful of the coins and an orange, say something blessful for the house or the houseowners (like, "may the house be blessed with lots of happiness" or something, not a must to say something la), then with all your might (but gently!), roll the orange and throw the coins into the house from the main door. Watch them roll all over the house - into the living room, kitchen, rooms, bathrooms. Go upstairs and roll them around the floor too. Do it until the bowl and the basket are empty. Then leave them on the floor until whenever you want, say, until the guests have all gone home. Then go treasure hunting, collect back all the coins and oranges. Don't fret if you can't find all the coins. *smile*

Kam Ngan 2
Wealth and good fortune all over the house

It was really fun, especially when we did it at my parents' house. It's coz our house doesn't go up like any other houses. Ours goes downwards. From the main door, walk down a flight of stairs to the living room, dining room and kitchen, walk another flight of stairs down to my bedroom and a guest room, then walk one more flight of stairs down to my parents' and Sis' rooms. So when we threw the oranges and coins from the main door, they rolled all the way downwards and it was soooooo noisy!

There's still a number of coins missing in the house. Hehe.. Would be fun to be able to find them some day. ;) I don't quite believe in superstitious but hey, it's fun! Try it! Am sure you will love it! *grin*

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Prayers For Nai Nai

It had been 50 days now since Nai Nai left us to join Yeh Yeh. I had taken a day's leave from work yesterday to join my family and relatives in Dad's hometown to offer prayers for Nai Nai to mark her 49th day after her death.

It was saddening entering the house, knowing that my grandparents would not be there to greet us anymore. They would no longer be sitting on their favourite chairs, waiting for our arrival as they usually did. Plenty of food were set up for Nai Nai. Her slippers, chair, 'tongkat', and a pair of clothes were left undisturbed beside the table since her death.

Grandma's Prayers 1
Food laid down for Nai Nai

We had also earlier on folded more paper money for her.

Grandma's Prayers 2
Huge paper money folded into the shape of a gold

After a short prayer session, offering food and wine, we proceeded to the outside of the house to burn more money and items for her.

Grandma's Prayers 3
Sending more clothes, other items and lots of money through the smoke for Nai Nai's afterlife

Now that my grandparents are no longer around, Dad and his siblings have decided to sell off the house. So we decided to dig out 'lost treasures' tucked away all over the house. There were so many antique collections, letters and photo albums. We decided to keep an old oil lamp I never knew Nai Nai had.

Oil Lamp
Oil lamps that were apparently very 'hot' many decades ago. We took the one on the right, which has a printed picture of a celebrity (or so my relatives said, I don't know who though)

The more I think of us selling off the house, the more I am reluctant of seeing it go to someone else. Ever since my grandparents bought the house more than 40 years ago, they had also bought over 3 other houses on the left and right of theirs. 4 houses side by side, it was like a huge 'kampung' place for us to roam around. Everyone would gather around in my grandparents' place. If all of us were to go back there together, the road in front of the 4 houses would be huge enough to fit all of us into a family photo. Imagine, my grandparents (if they're still alive now), Dad, his 8 other siblings and their spouses, more than 30 of us grandchildren (haven't included the spouses yet), and latest count, more than 20 great grandchildren - We're THAT many! But now that the house will be gone someday, the chain of houses will be broken. *sniff*

We'll no longer go back there and see this...

Grandparents' House
.. The living room where all family gatherings were held in, especially when we celebrated my grandparents' birthdays

Grandparents' Room
.. My grandparents' bedroom at the back of the house

My Family's Room
... The room where my family would sleep in everytime we went back to visit my grandparents - That's like, officially is our bedroom

Grandpa's Chair
... Nor Yeh Yeh sitting on his favourite chair

The Family Roots
... Potraits of my grandparents, and on the right, my great grandmother

It will be awfully sad to see the day when we will finally have to say Goodbye to the house where I've stayed in throughout my 27 years - The house will full of memories of my entire family tree..

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

'Disastrous' End To A Good CNY Week

A CNY week that started off well (apart from having clever-ly grated my own finger), ended with a 'disastrous' note. I had overeaten during Mum's birthday dinner in Concorde Shah Alam on Friday. In my past experience, when I overate, I would feel uneasy and automatically vomit them out. No matter how much I try to force myself to eat more (I want to gain weight mar!), my body system will 'pandai-pandai' force them out. :(

However, that Friday, I think I had a bad case of overeating and food poisoning. *Gasp* All the glorious food gone down the drain! Vomit la, diarrhoea la.. Semua habis! 'Lenguh' habis! I even barely ate anything when we had a mini lunch gathering at home the next day (just coz my family & relatives won't be celebrating CNY this year, doesn't mean we can't throw a party amongst ourselves, right?). I only managed to 'steal' some agar-agar while watching 20-odd of my relatives feasting themselves away. *sniff*

Came to work on Monday, but nearly 2 hours later, I realized I have not recovered yet. I left and got myself 2 days MC. The doctor said, "Food poisoning. Very common nowadays". Even suggested that I do a blood test one of these days coz I'm too thin. *gah* I slept through out that Monday, drank lots and lots of 100 Plus (Moorish said it helps to get back all the minerals). Then I got dead bored yesterday. Spent the whole day resting on the bed, entertaining myself with GameHouse Ancient Tri-Jong. Sad case.

But hey, I'm feeling much, much better today. That said, it's really good being able to come back to work. ;)

Oh, on a happier note, Inspector and I had finally gone to JPN Putrajaya on Friday to book for our Registration date. The last time we went there, we were told that we were too early to get the date we wanted, which was 1st of August 2005. We did not go back there until last Friday. Hehe.. We're finally gonna get registered this coming June! Pray that nothing's gonna stop us from signing those papers!