Saturday, January 8, 2011

No Regrets

Time flies! 2010, 365 days are just gone. I cannot imagine that I have not posted any article in my blog since the last one.

While writing this I had a sudden thought. I wonder how many heartbeat I had in these 365 days. Do you? First of all I want to thank God that my heart is still beating.

It is always around this time of the year, when a year has passed and a new year is ushered in, which triggers thought such as wondering if I have done what I wanted to and anything to regrets. Of course, there are.

Again, if you ask me," is there any resolution"? To think of it, we do not have to wait for a year to resolve what we want to do and be. However, I would like to minimize."regrets", in the days forward. Such as there are five things that we cannot recover in life:

1) The Stone...........after it's thrown,
2) The Word............after it's said,
3) The Occasion.....after it's missed,
4) The Time.............after it's gone
5) A person..............after they die"

No regret. Make time for whatever we desire to do. Do what we want to do and be what we want be.

Make time and Have a Blessed year ahead!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Thoughts for the NEW YEAR....

Now, now, a new decade is here. 2010! If you ask me should I shout out aloud, I will not say I would when I am one year advancing in my age but young at heart..ha..ha.. We should count ourselves blessed to step over the line of the next decade. I always have daunting thoughts each time when the clock ticked to the close of the year to embrace another new year.

Normally, reflection will flash in within me about what was done and what was left undone in the past months. I am not the kind to impose on myself to make any specific New Year resolution. However, there is always something to think about what I want and can do in a small fraction to go forward to a more enriching life. Aha! Why posting this not before 2009? Well, it’s timely too because it is just 8 days away from the Chinese lunar new year.

I like the following article someone sent me which arrived timely in my mail box me on “The Art of Forgiving” and that is something I like to make peace with myself to go forward daily with this art for this new decade beside other good values in life.


The most creative power given to the human spirit is the power to heal the wounds of a past it cannot change. We do our forgiving alone inside our hearts and minds; what happens to the people we forgive depends on them. The first person to benefit from forgiving is the one who does it. Forgiving happens in three stages:

1) we rediscover the humanity of the person who wronged us;
2) we surrender our rights to get even;
3) and we wish that person well.

Forgiving is a journey; the deeper the wound, the longer the journey.
Forgiving does not require us to reunite with the person who broke our trust. We do not forgive because we are supposed to;
We forgive when we are ready to be healed.
Waiting for someone to repent before we forgive is to surrender our future to the person who wronged us.

Forgiving is not a way to avoid pain but to heal the pain.
Forgiving someone who breaks a trust does not mean that we give him his job back.
Forgiving is the only way to be fair to ourselves.
Forgivers are not doormats; to forgive a person is not a signal that we are willing to put up with what he does.

Forgiving is essential; talking about it is optional.
When we forgive, we set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner we set free is us.
When we forgive we walk in stride with the forgiving God.”
- Author Unknown

Let us be forgiving. Wish you a blessed year with the “Art of Forgiving”.

Friday, November 14, 2008

A Short Trip to Jakarta

This is is my belated update of my Jakarta trip 1st April 2008. I went on Air Asia’s maiden flight from Kuching to Jakarta with 3 of my girl friends. It’s was a real short trip as we flew back on 3rd April. Can’t do much with such a short trip but we still managed to have some fun window shopping and get on the cab travelling from one part of the city to another part and snapping some pictures on the road in travelling cars. That too was something.

It was an eye opener to visit Jakarta. It is the capital of Indonesia, located on the northwest part of Java. It covers an area 661 square kilometers and has approximately a population of 13,194,000 (44,283 people per square mile).The languages spoken in Jakarta are Bahasa and Betawi Indonesian. You can still get around with English although not widely spoken. Imagine the size and it is administratively divided into:
Central Jakarta – you will find National Monument. Presidential palace, Office buildings, hotels, Mangga Dua Shopping Center and Menteng Residential Area.

West Jakarta – these are where Jakarta's Chinatown, Museums, Trading Centers, Nightlife Entertainment Centers, Shopping Centers and Malls are located.

South Jakarta – you will find more Shopping Centers, Malls, Restaurants, Hotels, Nightlife Entertainment Center (Blok M), Senayan Sports Complex and Residential areas.

East Jakarta – these are where the Taman Mini Indonesia Indah, Utan Kayu art community, Cibubur camping ground, industrial parks, Halim Perdanakusuma airport.

North Jakarta - Beautiful Thousand Islands, Ancol Bayfront City, and Kelapa Gading shopping centers.

Getting around Jakarta is a problem. The city layout is chaotic and totally bewildering and I supposed the traffic is the worst in South-East Asia with massive traffic jams slowing the city to a crawl during rush hour. It's a holiday so the jam is not a pain.

Since it was a short trip we managed to move around Central Jakarta. It was interesting to window shop and walk around Mangga Dua shopping center and you have plenty of choice on foot wear, genuine goods and imitation goods…Plaza Indonesia, where the shopping center is, happens to be really nice and you can find all branded shops here.

Despite the jam, the pollution I see her charms and I can rate it as one Asia's most exciting cities. There is plenty to do in Jakarta, from cosmopolitan shopping and also to the hippest nightlife scenes in Southeast Asia.

Best of all was the great company with my girl friends and having quality time eating, laughing and window shopping and getting on the flight together to see places. Can't ask for more for such golden opportunity.....

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Mother's Day

Today is Mother’s Day, where many in the world celebrate in different ways to mark this day. Occasionally on Sundays, my siblings and I will have dinner with our mum. Today is a special day having dinner with mum because it’s Mother’s Day. She is 78. I am counting my blessings to be sitting next to her and enjoying being with her. She is delighted, not because it’s Mother’s Day, but because she can be with her children and her grandchildren.

I was recollecting what a great mum I have. All my friends talk and praise their mum. Everyone claimed their mum are super mum. Yes, indeed they all are. I felt more so for my mum

As usual, I received many “sms” wishing me Happy Mum’s Day. There was one nice sms sent by my best friend Phyllis, and I felt that that was how I felt about my mum.

” A mother is God's love in action. She looks with her heart and feels with her eyes. A mother is the bank where her children deposit all their worries and hurt. A mother is the cement that keeps her family together and her love lasts a lifetime. Send this to a good mother. I just did. Happy Mothers' Day.”

I was also pondering as to what my children perceive about the kind of mum they have. My eldest son Caleb wrote a card for me which read:

“There are many mummies, there are many mums, there are even many mamas, but there is only one mumsies and that’s you. Happy Mother’s Day, and I Love You.”

And another card Caleb’s girl friend wrote that reads: “There are so many things that I want to tell/talk/say to you but I can’t express it all these words. All I can say is thanks for treating me like your daughter. Thanks for fetching me home everyday, thanks for everything you gave especially your LOVE and cares.”

Another heart warming card from my second son, Joash, that reads: "Happy Mother's Day! TQ for just one thing.... being "mumsies".

And another warmer card from my third son, Darryl, that reads:"Happy Mother's Day! Thank you for what you have done for me like: buying clothes, pampering me, buying yesterday's toilet paper, caring about me, thoughtful about me, many many more.... thank you for everything"

To all the mums out there and I passing on this Mother’s Day Message:

A mum is a Rose whose petals are soft,
A mum is a lily whose stem is tall and strong,
A mum is a person who is never wrong.
A mum is a person you should love forever.
Trust her, believe her and never doubt her.
From one mum to another…..
Pass this to someone who you think is a good mum.
I just did. Happy Mother’s Day!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Let Go

Time flies unfelt. 2007 is gone and now we are embracing 2008 with new hope and plans. With each passing year, we set many resolutions. Some are fulfilled, some are left unfulfilled and some are carried forward. I did not post this article in January to join in the rat race to affirm my resolution but its timely now too because it is the 4th Day of Lunar Chinese New Year – the year of the Rat.

“Let Go” has being ringing in my ears and heart since last year. There are many things I have faced and gone through throughout the years; some pleasant and some unpleasant. I wish to cast off the excess baggage, both physical and emotional, to emerge leaner and meaner to face the New Year and each passing day. It is quite habitual for me come every end of the year to clear my office drawers, table and my own bedroom stuff. It is easier to let go of the “physical baggage” compared to the “emotional baggage”. Things that happened in the past may have influenced our current actions. We read and were told that we need to let go and dump the unhealthy excesses of emotional baggage. Unknowingly, these have often become our stumbling block which weigh us down and prevent us from being able to move on with our lives to find happiness and success in relationships, business and family.
In October last year, my best friend Phyllis gave me a book – “Self-Empowerment” - autographed by the writer Bridget Menezes. She passed it to me in the evening when we attended the talk by the writer. Towards the end of the evening I flipped the book and saw a bookmark which came with the book. I could not believe my eyes when I saw the bookmark entitled “Let Go”. It was just like a confirmation of my lingering thoughts that it was high time to “let go” of certain matters. Is it a coincidence? I believe all things happen for a good reason. I like to share the wordings on the bookmark.

Let Go
It is great to be in control, and it is great to let go,
Let go for your expectations and fixed ideas about how things should be done.
Don’t try to force things to happen.
Just do as you can, then step back and see what takes shape.
If you feel responsible for someone else’s mood or emotions let this feelings go.Relax and allow new positive influences and options to emerge.

Yes, a good resolution to think about and a good one… “Let Go”.

Monday, December 31, 2007

Double Winnings in a Week

December is a busy month with many happenings. All these years I always experienced it with a very mixed feeling. Busy and rushing for annual business close, clearing backlogs, clearing papers and “rubbish” on the table, events and functions to go to; the feelings are like that there are so many things left undone. It is like spring cleaning physically and emotionally to pave the way for the New Year.

On 18th December 2007, my Toastmasters club held the Executive Committee Installation dinner. No announcement was made for the “Best Dressed” prior the dinner. Surprisingly, I was picked the best dressed. I had on a matching pearl necklace, ear stud and bracelet and a beige sandal to match my simple dress. It is just a simple dressing and nothing grand. I was delighted for the surprise.

On 21st December, 07, The Sarawak Club organized a “Big Tie” Christmas Party at the Badger Bar (I do not celebrate x'mas and it is a dinner for me). I have been a member for more than 20 over years but I never participated in most events. My friend asked me to go for this one as they are serving turkey. I will normally dress to the theme. This photo shows some other club member wearing a tie and bow.

So creatively, I used green and red-colored paper to make a big tie in the shape of a Christmas tree and decorated it with glitters (my son and daughter helped me with the glitters). My daughter, Sarah was curious and enquired why I took the trouble to make the tie (she went shopping with me to buy the items). I told her I wanted to win a prize for wearing a big tie to the dinner. I was taken aback when she said, “Mummy, you don’t have to win every time”. I asked why? She said, “Sometime let others win”. I ponder over it for a while. Can we let others win? Do we have such a big heart of giving? I told her, you are right. It is not all about winning but it is a matter of the heart and your effort in doing your best and having fun in doing it.

I really did my best and put an effort and I was the winner of the “Big-tie” event and won myself a bottle of white wine. It is such a nice feeling to be a 2-time winner in a week and a memorable round up for the year end.


7th Oct was my birthday, and that of my third son Darryl’s too. I do not usually celebrate my birthday. Darryl and I shared our birthday cake.

It’s a pleasure to receive so many birthday wishes from friends via sms, e-card, instant messaging and emails. Feeling good to be thought of. Strangely, this year a few close friends I consider dear totally forgot my birthday which they never missed. Does it hurt? Yes and No. Actions speak louder than words, I seem to concur, and I knew what it meant. I believe we choose to remember or forget and it is a matter of the heart.

Coincidentally, I had to fly to Kuala Lumpur for my office meeting on my birthday which I don’t really like because I want to have a more relaxed time to enjoy Darryl’s birthday cake and dinner.

It turned out to be a pleasant surprise to fly then. When the plane touched down at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA), I heard an announcement wishing me “Happy Birthday”. The chief stewardess walks to my aisle seat to confirm to my identity and shook hands with me and presented me a mug and some tarts instead of a cake… That was a nice gesture and going all out to service the passenger. I was embarrassed in a way too because it seem most of the passenger knew it was my birthday when I would prefer to keep a low profile. I don’t think Malaysia Airline System (MAS) does this to all passengers who flew on their birthday. It was the random act and pro-activeness of the crew of that flight. Well done! Hope they do keep that up to cheer people.

I really feel good and a consolation that I was remembered and wished in a different situation. It really made my day and I feel so light hearted when walking out of the plane to the custom clearance and arrival hall and smiles on my face while in the KLIA express train. I should say it was my best birthday. Life is not that bad after all.

Somehow, I realize that no one is perfect in this world but always remember that nothing can make us more perfect than being patient. When we learn to stay calm, the world will be the most peaceful place to us. :)

Saturday, December 29, 2007

So Far Yet So Near

So Near Yet So Far! What’s that feeling? Can you feel and have you felt before?

On 21 June 2007, my friends and I decided to embark on a quest to conquer the highest mountain in South East Asia – Mt Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia. Many have traveled (an average of 200,000 climbers/tourists annually to be more exact) from afar and all parts of the world came to scale this mountain and conquer the highest peak called the Low Peak which is 4095.2 meter and get a photo of their victorious smile together with the sense of satisfaction as well as a certificate to keep as a record and souvenir.

I didn’t want to be left out because Mt Kinabalu, which is located in Sabah, happens to be in my neighboring state. It is an hour 20 min flight to Kota Kinabalu from my city – Kuching, Sarawak. It is not only the First World Heritage Site of Malaysia, it is also a magnet to travelers and a symbol of conservation for natural history enthusiasts as well as biologists all over the world. Despite the increasing tourist traffic, the preservation of the National Park continues undisturbed, for on this one mountain alone there are more than 4000 species of vascular plants, thousands of insect forms, more than 300 bird species and 100 mammals, and many other life forms.

On my way to the national park to spend a night of relaxation and mental preparation before the climb, we stopped by the Poring hot spring to have a dip in the cold and hot pools to soothe our body muscles in anticipation for quest, and it was great fun. We then left and continued our drive to the national park, greeted by the cool and fresh air. I did not mind staying at the National Park Summit Lodge, where it was nice to enjoy the coolness and serenity while gazing at the peak of Mt. Kinabalu from our lodge; it was just too enticing as not to continue the journey next morning.

Keeping in mind the thought of ‘never give up’, the journey began. It was neither an easy climb nor is it a hard climb. However, the man-made steps which were quite far apart was killing my left knee. When I was at 2800 meters my knee started to hurt. Each stride and step I took was pure pain. I have never had a knee injury throughout the many jungle treks and hills or mountain climbs before. I had to cling onto my mountain guide’s arm to continue. I nearly gave up but there was no chance to retreat. It was a real test of will-power and mental toughness. Finally, I arrived at the 3,272 meter (11,000 feet) rest house – Laban Rata. I took 8 hours (while others took 3 to 4 hours) to reach because I spent many hours taking photos; the wide range of vegetation and rugged landscape was just too fascinating. It’s cold in the evening in Laban Rata Rest house – 11 degrees centigrade. It was nice despite the cold. I was filled with a sort of inner peace. I took a warm shower, and then moved on to a sumptuous dinner where I met a few new friends. Many climbers rested early that night because we had to get up at 2.30am the next morning for the summit climb.

I was ready by 2.30am despite the freezing temperature of about 9.8 degree centigrade. My knee still hurt but I still wanted to press on because I felt like the summit was within reach; just another 823.2 meter. This would be the hardest stretch of the whole climb, but you will be overcome by a feeling that none can describe unless it is experienced personally. I walked in pain, clinging onto my guide’s arm for about 300 meter before I finally waved the white flag. Many climbers and a group of my new-found friends, elderly Japanese climbers, went past me. I sat down for a while before I got up in another attempt to continue my journey. I made a few more attempts before I finally had to give in. I was devastated, and I broke down in tears. The feeling was terrible. I was defeated because of my inexperience and things I need to let go. Due to that situation, I had to come to terms with myself, and reluctantly I went back to the rest-house to rejuvenate and heal my injured knees.

It’s so near and yet so far because I did not make it to the top and I missed the beauty from the rugged peak of Mt Kinabalu. The Glacial Super-highway, South Peak (is a bizarre rock-desert), Donkey’s Ears (most characteristic summit feature viewed from Low’s Gully) and of course the Low Peak (highest). (The photos taken by my friends who made it to the summit.)

However, before I left at lunch time, one of the elderly Japanese climbers I just met gave me a stone he picked from the summit as a gift to me from the summit. I was so touched, for he knew how one felt when you are so near and yet so far. Thanks Toshi-san. The stone will be an inspiration to persevere and never give up. It also reminded me of how it was like to be remembered; through the kind thoughts of my newly-made friend.

I was presented with a certificate from Kinabalu Park as a record and a souvenir for an ascent of Mount Kinabalu for elevation reached at 3,272 meter (11,000 feet) which is not coloured. (The certificate for Reaching the summit is with colour).
A signpost at Laban Rata said, “Take Nothing but Photographs, Leave Nothing but Footprints, and Keep Nothing but Memories”. Yes, for now its a memorable memories and I will surely return again one day to renew my quest to conquer the summit and get the coloured certificate. Never Give Up!

Thursday, May 31, 2007

"It's Almost There"

There is something that I aspire to do despite many New Year’s resolutions, but failed. That is to set time for exercise and keep fit. I want to age gracefully thus I need a healthier life style. I took up dancing and went for swimming… but somehow I didn’t keep the dancing lessons going but went swimming once in a while. That’s not enough.

In August last year, I took up new exercises - jungle trekking and mountain climbing. I was lucky to have a buddy who kindly offered to accompany me on this new quest. My buddy suggested going to Kpg Taba Sait, about forty-five minutes drive away from the city. I took three hours for the to and fro journey compared to two hours for the villagers.

So the trek began. With much difficulty and a series of out of breath moments; I finally came to an interesting site where I needed to cross two bamboo suspension bridges at a one person walking width. One of the bridge measured approximately about 100 over feet long and the other about 50 over feet long and hanging about 40 to 50 feet above the streams. It’s scary to walk across the shaky bamboo bridges. It’s really an experience. My courage was tested.

Honestly, I wanted to give up the journey many times…I was so exhausted lacking stamina and I just fell flat on the ground to take a rest. However, my buddy encouraged me saying “It’s almost there”. I have forgotten how many times I asked whether we are reaching our destination. Repeatedly, the encouraging words “It’s almost there” was uttered. It was the echo of “It’s almost there” that spurred me on and I finally reached the village welcomed by the serenity of nature and the friendly faces of the village folk and happy children. It’s good to get away from the city and enter the tranquility of the village life.

At the end of my jungle trek my Nike shoe sole was ripped open, my body was tired and my muscles ached. In exchange I felt rich in the spirit, refreshed from breathing the fresh air in the jungle and getting the positive ion from the jungle and feeling good all because I did not give up and make it. I felt victorious and satisfied with the end result.

Many times in our life journey, the feelings are like such. There are so many things that we want to do but felt like giving up or have given up. Please hold on to your dreams, realize it. It’s likened to my first jungle trek that I wanted to give up. My buddy encouraged me and said, “It’s almost there”. That gave me the strength to carry on. There were voices of encouragement that push us on. Listen to those. Hear those voices and persevere, my friends. Never give up, “it’s almost there”. Yes, I will continue to trek and climb mountains to find solace in within.