Month: February 2008

你怕黑吗?

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bagua


block        block


shougou


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Show me the path towards the light

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It’s been a week since I last blogged.


Work has been real busy and I hardly have time to drink or even go to the restroom. By the time I reach home, I’m so exhausted till I don’t have any juice left to blog.


The job wasn’t quite what I’d expected it to be. Though I get to meet people, but patients aren’t exactly very happy people to deal with. Most of the patients are nice, actually but there are also a few whom I really wish I could…


beat_little_men


At times, it could get a little lonely. 


I’m wondering is it because of the rising black force therefore I felt a little outcasted? Afterall, I’m the only odd one out there.


For the past week, when I lie on my bed at night, I’ll questioned myself: comma_openIs this really the job for me? Is this what I really wanted?comma_close


Sian, zo lang kor see leh…


GOD, can you give me a sign?


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Finders’ keepers, losers’ weepers?

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You see, I’ve found a brand new N81 and I’m elated!


BUT…


I’m struggling inside whether to return the phone or to keep it for myself.


My own phone has been problematic (the 7, 8 and 9 keys aren’t working) of late and this new phone is just timely for me.


However, as I thought of the person who had loses it, a sense of guilt consumed me. The phone is brand new and I’m sure it doesn’t come cheap. I bet the person who lost it must be very anxious and losing sleep over it. I’ve lost my phone before and I know how painful it feels!


After going through the messages in search of the owners’ details, I realised that she is actually from China currently studying in Singapore. There are a couple of messages from her dad which I believed was sent after she lost her phone asking why she didn’t pick up the phone.


One of the messages goes like this:  comma_open女儿,怎么不接电话?爸爸好担心啊!comma_close


My heart almost cried when I read that.


I lived my life based on one motto and that is: Don’t do unto others what you don’t want other to do unto you…  (己所不欲, 勿施于人)


I only asks for a clear conscience hence, I made the painful decision to return the phone to it’s rightful owner. Abit unwilling, yes and also alittle heart breaking but still, it’s not right to claim something which isn’t yours in the first place.



Life is really full of temptations, isn’t it?


How about you? If you’ve found something which you really like, would you return it or keep it for your own use?


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First day reporting

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I met the HR in the morning to discusss the package which they’ve offered me as well as to sign the appointment letter. The rest of the morning was spent shuttling between the different clinics to have my body checkups done.


I first reported to the Staff Clinic and after filling in my particulars, I passed it to the nurse at the counter. She glanced through my details when suddenly, she looked up to me in jest and exclaimed, “You are my neighbor two doors away!”


I was caught by surprise because… I’ve not seen her before though I’ve stayed at my current place for close to 20 years already. Anyway, she was particularly helpful in giving me concise direction  to the various clinics where I had to go for the tests. 


After I had my blood tests (they collected two test-tubes of my blood!) and x-rays taken, I returned to the Staff Clinic where I continued with my eyesight and urine test. After completing the tests, I had to wait for my test report.


The doctor who saw me was yet another gallant member of the ‘dark force’. Why do I keep running into them wherever I go? Was it really like what Dango has said? That I really have round-shit with them?


Adoi! *slaps forhead*


Anyway, she asks about my medical history and checked my blood pressure. She said my blood level was a little high and I had to bring down my levels by the next appointment if not, she’s not going to give me clearance for my medical. Piang… why do they always make things difficult for me in my career? What exactly do I owe them?


Towards the end of the consultation, she asks me to undress. Then, she told me to lie on the bed. My heart was pounding away nervously as she walks closer and closer to me. I closed my eyes tightly and I felt her hands pressing about on my upper body. She further instructs me to ‘loosen’ my trousers and she started pressing my abdomen as well. Finally, she asks me to turn over, and continued pressing my back.


Oh man, I feel like a prostitute dough…


By lunchtime, my ordeal was finally over. I reported to my department and the number of patients scared me! Colleagues are fine, except that I’m once again the rose among the many, many thorns there in my department. The aunties are fun-loving yet man-hungry (that’s what they claimed themselves to be) at the same time.


Paperwork was a nightmare. There are lots of medical terms and abbreviations to learn and procedures to follow. I’m a little overwhelmed but I guess I should have no problems learning the ropes. I just need some time to digest.

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Wah Kueh, the bowl Pudding

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Yesterday, I was at Bukit Merah to settle some paperwork with the HR Department. It’s been a long time since I came here. The last time I came was around 1997, when I frequent CMPB for my deferment and medical checkup prior NS.


I remembered the last time when I was here, there was a stall at the food centre selling “Wah Kueh.” The Wah Kueh was actually quite similar to the Chwee Kueh, except that it was bigger – about the size of a bowl. Unlike the Chwee Kueh, which was served with chai pok, Wah Kueh was eaten with black sauce doused all over it.


A Teocheow delicacy, it was made from a mixture of rice flour and water which was then poured into a bowl to mould the shape during steaming. I believed that was how the Wah Kueh first derived its’ name.


Not many younger generations know about it because this traditional dish is already dying out during my generation. In fact, it was at the Bukit Merah food centre where I had the chance to eat it for the first and last time. Before this, everything I know about this dish were heard from my parents.


At that time, I was still a infant when we were staying at Bukit Ho Swee. Everyday, an old man would come by horning on his bicycle and customers would go downstairs to buy his Wah Kueh.


Sad to say, we moved out of Bukit Ho Swee before I even had the opportunity to eat it. 


When I went back yesterday, I searched the whole food centre but I couldn’t find the stall anymore.


Do you know anything else about this mysterious Wah Kueh? Do you know where has the stall shifted to?


Play and feed a hungry person

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According to the United Nations, about 25,000 people die each day from hunger or hunger-related causes, most of them children.

Now we can help to feed the hungry simply by going to www.freerice.com and play the vocabulary game. We earned 20 grains of rice for every question which we’ve gotten correct and the sponsors at the bottom of the screen will pay for that. 

We get to improve our vocabularly and yet able to help someone else at the same time so, why not? We feed their tummy, while we feed our brains.

I have played the game and donated 5000 grains of rice. I’m not sure how far 5000 grains of rice can go but what I’m sure is no amount is too little. Afterall, the sea is made up of many drops of water.

As the saying goes, comma_openMany a mickle makes a muckle.comma_close (积少成多)

Let’s help a child to sleep with a full tummy today.


The most infuriating dinner

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My parents and I were at my brother’s place visiting and after that, we went for dinner at the newly renovated coffeeshop.


We decided to have tze char and we ordered the BBQ Stingray, Hotplate Tofu, Tapioca Leaves and Prawn Paste Chicken.


After waiting for about half an hour, our rice was served followed by the BBQ Stingray ten minutes later. About another half an hour later, there is still no sign of our second dish.


Our rice by then had already turned cold so, my brother went to remind them about it.


Soon, one of the servers came with a plate of Prawn Paste Chicken but to our dismay, the dish went to the patrons at the next table who came fifteen minutes later than us. The Prawn Paste Chicken which should have been ours, actually went to them!


We were annoyed but still, we waited. And as we waited, we watched on helplessly as more and more dishes filled up the other table while we were still waiting for our second dish to come.


By the time our second dish, the Hotplate Tofu came, the next table had already finished their eight course dinner including Lou Hei. My brother was so angry that he went to remind the lady again and to replaced all our cold rice with hot ones.


Once again, we took our time to eat the rice while waiting for the third dish to be served and when it came, we were puzzled to see a plate of BBQ Sotongs which we didn’t ordered. The China girl claims that she just followed what’s written on the order so we got her to repeat what’s written on it and we realised that the person who took down our order had mixed up the Prawn Paste Chicken with BBQ Sotongs. We were affirmative that we ordered Prawn Paste Chicken and NOT BBQ Sotongs but the China girl insisted otherwise.


My parents were actually thinking of taking the BBQ Sotong and cancel the Prawn Paste Chicken so that we do not have to wait any longer but I’m defiant that since they are the ones who made the mistake, why should we accept it? 


I was damn dulan when she said, “那怎样? 要不要?”  


The attitude of the China girl really pisses me off so I ordered her to remove the bloody sotongs out of my sight and serve us the Prawn Paste Chicken which we have originally ordered.


After waiting for another fifteen minutes and our rice turning cold again, we decided enough is enough. The whole family is too pissed and upset to wait anymore so we decided to cancel the remaining orders. 


This time, the China girl came very fast with the bill and my dad asks her, “收钱就很快hor? ”


My dad put the money onto the table and we went to the next coffee shop for char kway teow.


It’s not that we are being difficult but can you imagine, we waited almost forty minutes for the second dish to be served? It’s atrocious to wait so long for a dish! I can understand if the kitchen is underhanded and there are too many orders but the thing is, we were there early. When we placed our orders at 6.30pm, the coffee shop wasn’t crowded at all. I would even say the coffee shop is quite empty.


What’s infuriating was why does everyone who came later than us got served first? Other people had already finished their Lou Hei yet we were still kept waiting like fools. We’ve spent almost two hours and fifteen minutes for a two course meal! 


What’s this?


6.30pm Placed order
7.00pm Rice served
7.10pm BBQ Stingray served
7.50pm Hotplate Tofu served
8.10pm BBQ Sotong served
8.30pm Left in hunger anger
8.45pm Char Kway Teow next door


2006 春节晚会《俏夕阳》
http://www.tudou.com/v/MDSk3D6eB4o



A Rant About PLC

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Since last year, I’ve been contemplating whether to start keeping Hamsters again? I’ve already gotten a cage ready with all the accessories and all I lack now is an occupant.


What should I keep?


  
Roborovskiis? Syrian? Or Dwarf?


I started out looking around in forums seeking adoptions but it seems everyone who had a hamster to give all stayed so far away from me and they stayed at either Bedok Reservoir or Macpherson. My next available option (only as a last resort) would be buying from the petshops and the one nearest to me is PLC.


However, I’m still nursing a grudge against them for the bad service attitude so no way am I going to give them any business.


I’ve come to realise that what I’ve learnt from my retail course was indeed very useful. Now I know the rationale behind my reactions for every service lapse which I’ve encountered.


“A loyal customer tends to be more forgiving if a service breakdown occurs.”


In my case, I am unforgiving because I do not feel being respected nor am I being treated like a valued customer. If you were to be in my shoes, how would you have reacted when the salesperson threw a shopping basket at you, which landed beside your feet with a thud – not once but twice?


Mind you he’s not passing me the shopping basket for me to put my purchases in but he’s collecting the empty baskets that’s lying around the shop and stacking them together. And I was standing right beside the spot where the shopping baskets should have been. 


The salesperson was only less than ten steps away from me, so couldn’t he have walked over to put down the shopping baskets instead of throwing them which nearly hit me?


All customers have certain expectations and these expectations could have come from a previous experience or from a competitor in a similar business. It is human nature for a customer to make comparisons and if he did not receive the kind of service that he is expecting, he might just patronise the competitor next door instead.


Why should a customer buy from Shop A when he could get the same thing from Shop B which could provide a better service? The customer has got nothing to lose but Shop A, on the other hand, lose both its’ business and customer.


Nowadays, if we want to survive as a salesperson, simply having product knowledge is not enough. We may be able to meet a customers’ physical need (for a product), but if we’re unable to satisfy their emotional demands (eg, the need to feel important), then we would have failed on our part as a salesperson.


In other words, what made a salesperson stands out from the others lies in his willingness to walk The Extra Mile.”


How far is the salesperson willing to go for the customer? For example, instead of informing a customer outright that you have run out of stocks, offer to call up the other branches for stock availability. Even simple things like remembering a customers’ name, his preference for a certain color or design could delight the customer in coming back for more.


And this actually brings us back to an earlier point which I’ve pointed out: A customer who keeps coming back is a loyal customer and a loyal customer tends to be more forgiving when a service breakdown occurs.


In my case, I felt the saleperson was out to embarras me and I don’t feel welcomed hence, I returned all the items back onto the shelves and I left the shop without making any purchases.


A word of advice for PLC: It’s not enough just teaching your staffs product knowledge and how to operate the cash register. It’s high time you send your staffs for courses on how to become a better salesperson.



A Pet Is Not A Fad!

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It’s the year of the Rat and hordes of people have been rushing to the pet stores to buy themselves a Hamster, Gerbil, Guinea Pig or even a Chinchilla as pets.

Read news here.
Vodcast here.

This is very worrying.

I sincerely hope that these people will treat their pets seriously and not abandon them once the festive season is over.

 

A PET IS FOR LIFE!

This was what happened during the Year of the Dog:

comma_openAfter the previous Year of the Dog in 1994, the SPCA reported that 4,312 dogs were abandoned, every week, more than 40 dogs are put to sleep.comma_close

And this is what happened after the Year of the Rabbit:

comma_open625 rabbits were abandoned after the Year of the Rabbit in 1999, a 116 percent increase over the previous year.comma_close

A pet is not a fad! Don’t buy one on a whim only have to give them up later because that is very irresponsible!

Source.

Reunion Dinner

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The Reunion Dinner is the only time of the year when the whole family could sit down and have a meal together. These are what my family had for this year.

pipaduck (450 x 600)
Pipa Duck

We have recently 移情别恋。We ditched the usual Roast Duck for Pipa Duck instead.

poachedchicken (450 x 600)
One of the standard items on the menu every year

Some things are never meant to be replaced. Just like this Poached Chicken which we are very 始终如一one. It goes great with my dad’s homemade chicken rice chilli with lots of garlic.

spinachabalone (600 x 450)
Abalone – my favourite!

ketchupprawns (600 x 450)
嘻哈(虾)大笑

‘哈’sounds like ‘虾’in Cantonese.

Ketchup Prawn is a must-have for my family. We’ve been having this every Reunion Dinner for as long as I can remember ever since I was a kid. It’s almost like a tradition to have this dish on the table.

steamedfish (600 x 450)
年年有鱼(余) (Year Year Have Fish)

Fish is another must-have during reunion dinners because 鱼(fish) and 余(Abundance) sounds the same in chinese.

My family likes to lay newspapers on the table during dinners. Yes, very unglam I know but we saved ourselves the hassle of  having to wipe the table afterwards. Just don’t use the orbituaries section can liao.

vegetarian (600 x 450)
This pot of vegetarian is limited edition.

There’s black fungus, kum zan (金针), fu zok (腐竹), tim zok (甜竹), ‘Uncle Wong’ (王伯) and braised with nan ru (南乳) which is a kind of fermented beancurd. My mum only cook this once a year.

I’ve forgotten to take picture of the Lotus Root Soup with Spareribs. The Cantonese loves to drink soup and my mum’s Lotus Root Soup is damn power. The soup is usually boiled overnight above a charcoal stove to allow the flavors of the ingredients to have time to blend together. This is the good old traditional way of  preparing soups but due to fire hazard, we have switched to using the slow cooker instead.

I loved Renion Dinners. How about you? 


Anyway, did a new banner for my blog. Tell me if you like it?