School holidays

I love the school holidays. Why can’t they have longer school holidays mid-term, instead of just the long one at the end of the year? I know this sounds horrifying parents, but those who drive to work in the morning will agree with me.

Traffic has been so smooth this few mornings, not stressful at all. At least I know I can take my time when I leave the house. At least I know I won’t be stuck in the jam at Jln Ampang, and at least I know I won’t be stuck at the darn school near my workplace. And most of all, going home was easy, too.

I have never liked school holidays during my school days, even – most probably because of all the tuition classes I need to attend. It’s not that I don’t like tuition, give me something like BC, I sure like. It’s just that I hate ‘the tuition centre’ that I went to. Torturous! Anyway, I won’t have much chance to enjoy the traffic either – am going to be outstation for the rest of the week. And when next week comes – it’s madness again… sigh…

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Wrong date!

Darn it! I’ve got the date wrong! Luckily, mom pointed it out and I have not taken leave yet.

The date should be the 22nd September (a whole week earlier!).

Started packing some of my stuff yesterday – my soft toys were the ones that first went in to a huge black, rubbish bag. Pity them, I hope none suffocates in there.

For the time being, feast your eyes on some pictures I took of my house. Check out My House-In-Progress

29 September

Okay, it’s on. The date’s fixed. Finally. No, not my wedding day, obviously! The day that we will finally move into our new house. Yay!

The date should be perfect. The 1st day of the eighth month according to the lunar calendar, and near weekend (Friday). It’s also the end of the month, so, rental could be easily calcualted – no pro-rated basis.

I know the big headaches have not exactly hit me yet, but fingers crossed, hopefully it is smooth sailing.

Some more got assessment on that day! Have to come back to the office to sit for the test for one hour and then rush back!

Glorious food…

I was off for the past few days and did nothing but shop and eat. You see, my brother came back from Singapore and when he is back, we go for real nice food. (Yeah, it’s sad to know that our family is always very careful when it comes to spending and thus, we usually will end up having economy/chicken rice or just wantan/pork noodles for dinner.

Anyway, he was back on Wednesday itself. Mom cooked on the first night and we had a scrumptious meal of steamed chicken. Imagine the four of us gobbling up the whole chicken (and that’s including double boiled soup, stir-fried vegetables and fried eggs). I always knew that mom’s cooking is the best in the world. Nothing beats a satisfying meal at home. So, a few days worth of activities all condensed into a post:

Thursday (10/8)

Went out very early for my annual eye exam in HUKM. Forced him to come with me so I don’t need to drive. Proceeded to Mid Valley after that and feeling hungry, went to Dome for breakfast. We did not want to eat so much, cos we wanna have a nice lunch, too. Ended up going for their big breakfast (very yummy, big portion) which reminds me of the breakfast I had in London. Since it was a big plate, we shared. Funny, we were like two ‘lovers’ sharing a plate of breakfast! After some shopping, went to Manhattan Fish Market for lunch. We were not that hungry, but aching to go home for a nap. So, same thing applied, we ended up sharing a plate. More food came for dinner when the whole family went to a restaurant. We ordered loads of stuff, fish, squids, chicken, vegetables and double boiled soup. I was soooo… stuffed at the end of the day, and I thought that I had gained at least 2 kgs! But the food was terrific. The restaurant was one of our favourites, which offer good quality and delicious food at reasonable prices.

Friday (11/8)

This time, mom took annual leave to come with us. In order to save time, we planned our day ahead the night before. We made an appointment with our contractor to look at some tiles for our kitchen top in the morning, so, we got up early again and headed out. Since his royal highness likes bak kut teh, we went to Jln Imbi for our breakfast. If anyone get to chance upon the bak kut teh shops in Jln Imbi, they should really give it a try. They are one of the more popular spots for this ‘dish’ and a lot of tourists go there for it. Well, if they serve it to the tourists, the food there will no doubt be very expensive, but what the heck, try ma… Then we were off to Sentul to check out a row of shops selling tiles. We finally decided on one (a red coloured one) and made our decision to put that. (finally!) I never knew that renovating was such headache to start with. And the part of moving has not even come in yet. After looking at the tiles, we headed off to the Curve to do more shopping.

Had lunch at Marche – and of course, I made him pay for all those — since everything costs only 1/2 for him. That day was also the first time I have been to Marche and the experience was a bit exhilarating. Think I must frequent more of these places to keep myself more up-to-date about things ‘cool’ nowadays. Went for another round of scrumptious dinner that night – and this time it was steamboat. Someone wanted to have steamboat for dinner and since no one could remember where anyone saw a steamboat restaurant before, we went round some places in the car. Luckily, we found one ‘okay’ one in Tmn Connaught. Although it was not particularly fantastic, but it was satisfying enough and not expensive at all. Came up to about RM50 for the 4 of us. And again, I think I added a few inches more to my waistline that evening.

Saturday (12/8)

Mom went back to work today and there was nothing much we could do. Since we have completed most of our shopping, I went to sit at the office while he goes over to do some window-shopping at KLCC. Our friend bought more toy cars while shopping and makes me really wonder who will get his collection when he gets tired of them (hey, Abang might be interested?) He had bought over RM200 worth of toy cars in Mid Valley and this time was probably the same. And after having a light lunch, we went home (no where to go). That night, we had a dinner appointment with everyone back home in OUG, so, we went back right after mom came back from work. This time, we went to Brickfields for steam fish head. And apparently, too, this restaurant is quite famous for their fish head. And right after that, it was back to the house where everyone sat lazily and catches up on whatever is happening in each others lives.

Sunday (13/8)

By today I was quite hesitant in taking in more food, but nevertheless, I knew I won’t have this chance when my brother goes nack to Singapore. Anyway, we went for dim sum in the morning. This time, we had it in Overseas (Dim Sum) Restaurant in Sri Petaling. Although a bit expensive, their dim sum was in actual fact quite nice. We did not really want to come in the first place cos we had planned for the four of us to go for dim sum buffet at Tai Thong (in Wisma Selangor Dredging, yes!). However, at the insistence of my aunt, we agreed. *I don’t really mind, actually, as long as I get to eat and since we are not going to Tai Thong, means I don’t need to pay*

Right after the dim sum, we went shopping again in One Utama, mom eager to show her son how nice and big it became. (yeah, compared to Orchard Road?) Anyway, did not have lunch at all that day cos we were still full, but we still ended up having some dessert – ice kacang at the famous Mark’s Assam Laksa place at the old wing. Since we had nothing much to buy, we went home. While my brother had a nap, the three of us went to look at the house again to see if things are done properly and according to what we want, last minute changes, etc. There is sooo… much headache going on with it at the moment (next post!)

Towards teh evening, we have again had to decide where to go for our dinner and decided to go to Nikko Hotel for buffet (by this time, you should have guessed that we are a buffet loving family) Citibank is offering 50% discount for using their card to pay so, I called to make a reservation. to our utter disappointment, the place was fully booked! Undecided, I leaved through the Citibank booklet againa and suggested a Chinese restaurant at Nikko Hotel again. Although I won’t get a discount, but for every 4 pax dining there, one person gets to eat free. And — it’s all you can eat buffet! (yay!)

So, off we went to this posh Chinese restaurant – no one there – only about 3 tables including us but we had a nice time ordering our food. Usually with Chinese restaurant buffet, they will give you a menu and you can order from that list as much as you want and they will serve it to you. And of course, being typical Chinese, we tried to order the expensive dishes. Among us, I think we have consumed 8 bowls of ‘Monk Jump Over the Wall’ Soup, 4 bowls of sharksfin soup, 3 plates of squids, 2 plates of chicken, 3 plates of duck, 2 plates of vegetable, 2 plates of prawns and another 2 plates of braised abalone. Of course, dessert was another 6 varieties. (Gosh!) But the food there was excellent! Costs about RM270++ – okay la, once in a while. (Iren, bila nak pergi? Bagus ni!)

Anyway, when Monday came, I was already dragging myself to work, wondering how to detox with all those junk I’ve put into my tummy.

P/S: The restaurant is halal! (Who else wanna go?)

Jargons

Everyday (or rather, every some other time) you hear people from the business world, or IT world or customer service world (or, to simplify everything, corporate world) speaking about the use of jargons. I have always put that in mind when I speak to customers and try my best to use less jargons. But, it can be hard sometimes cause some stuff can’t be explained using lay man terms.

Never have I realised that the use of jargons will exist in some ah-soh housewife as well (ie, my mom).

I bought a pair of pants the other day for myself (sales! sales!) and promptly ‘requested’ her to shorten it for me. You see, the size of my waist and butt don’t exactly correspond with the length of my legs (ie I’m a bit short), so, everytime I buy pants, I have to cut them. I always ask mom to do it cos (1) she was a tailor before she got married – so, might as well (2) I trust her more with the sewing (3) one of my legs is shorter than the other and only she knows it and she could adjust the cutting well. Anyway, the conversation went like this:

Me: *standing in front of the mirror wearing the pants*
Mom: *measure, measure, fold, fold* What length you want? Okay not like this?
Me: *look, look, turn, turn* Okay la, I guess.
Mom: You want me how to sew? You want the cut or folded end? (okay, she spoke in Cantonese, so this is the best — direct, actually, translation I can manage
Me: Huh?! *scratches head* Whatever style loh, I trust you
Mom: No, you must tell me properly. If not, don’t ask me to change for you next time. So, the folded option or cut option
Me: Erm, what’s the difference?
Mom: You see, if you want the folded option, then when you wear, you will safoifhafao and then if I sew, I will asfhsohf the end and then safusgf the nmbvudugf
Me: ???? Eiyer, whatever la, I turst you, tell me which looks nicer or easier for you to do.
Mom: No, you tell me what you want. For me, both are simple. I can justmdhgo asgfuegf afgoufaof
Me: ?????????? Whatever la! Don’t understand what is what la!
Mom: Haizz… simple one! You see ar, *explain the whole process of sewing, fold this, fold that, sew here, sew there, and then iron here and at the end will look like that*
Me: *gave up – pretended to understand* Okay, okay, I think the folded option looks nicer. We shall go with that
Mom: *happy*

I still have not seen the finished product yet, so, if I ever get the chance to wear it, I will show you guys what how the folded option looks like.

Sigh… jargons, jargons

A letter of complaint

I was getting a bit annoyed by some customer service people, so, I wrote a very nice letter and faxed it off to them yesterday.

Re: Rewards Redemption

I am writing to express my disappointment over your rewards redemption process. A brief history on what happened follows.

In March 2006, I have submitted my redemption via online banking for a XXX voucher (Code XXX). I waited patiently after that as I knew that delivery would take some time. I was confident that nothing would go wrong as I have previously redeemed a couple of items.

When I did not receive anything when May comes, I gave your customer service line a ring and was informed that the item has been delivered. When I told the officer that I have not received anything, she expressed concern and informed me that she would request the item to be resent. Again, I waited, for I knew that delivery would take some time.

After a month, I called [bank name] again. This time, I was informed again that the item was delivered. Since it was delivered via registered post, I requested for a proof of delivery (POD). The officer told me that request for the POD would take some
time. I gave Citibank the benefit of doubt and waited again. I was hoping at least the POD will give me an indication as to where the item was sent to.

A few days ago, I rang your customer service helpline again, hoping to check if the POD is available. I was attended to by yet another officer who sounded concerned and told me she would check and come back to me. She did ring back later in the day, but all she gave me was a number to call, and that was company A’s number. I believe that company A is your out-sourced partner for gift deliveries. Armed with a phone and redemption number, I called them and was told to call Pos Malaysia instead. I was given yet another reference number to track.

Subsequently when I called Pos Malaysia, I was informed that the tracking number that company A gave me does not exist. I was told to call the sender again company A to check when the item was delivered and whether the number was correct.

By this time, I was getting annoyed by the run-around given by everyone. I really wonder if the voucher was worth all the trouble I had to go through. What I could not understand was why [bank name] could not ensure (or at least do all the checking) on behalf of the cardholder. I do understand that some things are beyond [bank name] control, but in my opinion a simple voucher should not face any delivery problems; as opposed to a portable vacuum cleaner which I had redeemed before through the Bank.

I appreciate an explanation on this matter.

I faxed the letter yesterday morning and till now I’m still waiting for their call. I am not exactly sure if they’d call me at all – who am I – just a mere classic cardholder. But anyway, I received a missed call at about 4.30pm yesterday and the number was shown as private. I guessed it must be them (cos banks sometimes put their number as a private number). There was a voicemail left, so, I dialled the voicemail.

And guess what – the caller had apparently put my voicemail on hold! Throughout the recorded voicemail, there was no human voice recording but a constant stream of music playing, as if you are put on hold. Shall I give them more if they call and admit that they called at that time?

Busy as a bee

July seemed to have zoomed by just like that. Been too busy to blog, too busy to even think about what to put in here. Although days in the office had been easy, adapting into a whole new environment and culture and in the same time learning everything all over again was not. Then there was this course that I need to do right away. I am still grappling with the fact that I need to study and take an assessment every 2 weeks for the following 14 weeks. Not a very nice thought for someone who had not taken an exam for more than 5 years!

Weekends are the worst: the whole family running here and there buying stuff for the new house, the contractor dropping in unexpectedly some nights to discuss about renovations, arguments about how to do things, major headaches dealing with MPAJ people trying to get plans approved —- and of course, the most, most troubling one, money. Where to scramble for money. Seeing my hard earned savings go down the drain at one go. Everyone wanted to do this and that. Not an easy task if the contractor suggested something and your dad goes yes, yes, good suggestion, do that please! I can’t say no, can I? (e.g. granite kitchen tops will look better and last longer than marble ones – yeah right, who doesn’t know, but the $$$!)

Everytime our contractor came for a discussion, I will have sleepless nights. Wondering if everything is ok. Sigh… Never knew buying a house was so difficult. Or is it buying a house but your parents are the ones having a say in the decor?

And with all the plans of moving coming up soon in Sept, exams to take throughout, projects at work to complete — I wonder if Christmas will come at a blink of an eye…..