Saturday, September 30, 2006

Dragon Beard Biscuit

Gladness x 10000... till infinity!!

I survived my first 2 weeks in Nottingham, and managed to come home in one skinny piece. Sad to say I have lost quite abit of weight, albeit unwillingly, the food there is really, and I mean REALLY terrible. The more I eat, the worse it tastes. Fortunately enough, there's Ramly's Burger patties which are of standard quality! Also the chicken rice stall, which is understandably, overwhelmingly popular. One thing I dislike about that stall is that their chicken serving is so so small. Even my 10 year-old brother would complain.

I'm home now. Pinging on food every other hour. Also going out later for a birthday party. After being locked on campus grounds for nearly the entire week, I took the PLATINUM (more precious than golden ma...) opportunity to go out. We hit Jusco Metro Prima, and lingered among the departmental stores for abit. By the way, for all the girls out there, ITS SALES TIME! from 29/9 till I don't know, end of October? Better go early or all the great bargains/ common sizes will be all sold out by the time you had a chance to even see what's up for grabs. Yup, females are extremely competitive when it comes to the magical word 'SALE'. Its almost like when you hear that word, you can almost hear the Hallelujah chorus that comes with it.

This is when...

...they run fast, even if they're on their tallest heels.
...they start being nice to husbands/ boyfriends
...they empty their bank accounts
...they go on a credit card swiping spree
...banks and credit card salesmen come out at full force
...they stop being nice to fellow females, just because they grabbed the last piece of skirt.

and the list goes on. Teeheehee~

I decided not to wrestle with them and went the the central exhibition area. Bearing in mind that Mid-Autumn Festival's next friday, I held my breath as I charged past desperate looking Mooncake promoters, ignoring everything they say. I feel so bad doing it. It's rude and they're just trying to earn a living out of it. And yet, sometimes they can be pretty annoying. Besides, I don't want them to waste time trying to persuade me to purchase any of their products. I'm not a big fan of mooncakes, really. The only species I eat is of the "Ping Pei Lin Yong" variety. It means snow skin with lotus paste. Don't give me others, especially those with eggs. I will be forced to decline, and that'll be rude. Artificial flavouring, colouring, excessive sugar... Ugh, utterly disgusting! Like a passport to Diabetes, Kidney Stones, Obesity, and Cardiac Seizure.

Right at the end of the "Mooncake Parade", I see a small crowd. Surrendering to my busybody genes, I managed to squeeze over for a peek. I see a chef with their signature very tall white hat, making "Long Sou Peng", Dragon Beard Biscuit. You should take a look at the white dough-like thingy. It's finer than hair and mildly sweet. All handmade! Can you believe it? A man, standing in front of a large crowd of impressed audience, proving it right under their noses. I find it so superbly amazing I just couldn't resist recording it down so that I can share it with everybody.

There you go, shot with my trusty Sony Ericsson K610i, and it's 2mp camera. It's not perfect. You must understand that I'm no Ang Lee or Steven Speilberg, especially with evil aunties trying to get me out of their way by pushing every now and then. I stood my ground and refused to budge. But they never get that message, they just keep attempting to push me every minute. Don't they ever give up? Oh yeah, it's a little dizzy because I was kinda playing with the zooming function too, teeheehee. Believe it or not?!

*Sorry Mr.Ripley, borrow your signature line for one entry only.*

Friday, September 29, 2006

In Nottingham

This blog is NOT DEAD! There may not have been updates for quite some time now, I know. I have been stretching favours from people to come fix the internet connection in my flat. Then came a certain Alex who saved the lives of Desperate-Internet-Deprived-First -Years just last night! Whoopee!

Although I am back online, I'm afraid my course's much tougher than I had initially expected. The overview itself kills. Credits, passes, essays of thousands of words, they're haunting me.

For our Pharmacy course this year, there are roughly 41 students, among which, only 6 are guys. Teeheehee~ any other Nottingham-mers intending to switch courses? VERY high girl:guy ratio, you know?

Then we have our own ice-breaking session, only for Pharmacy students. Pharmacy faculty rocks, man! And... guess what? We have our very own "IMCC"s too! But, unfortunately, we weren't give much time and money to prepare our "girls" as flamboyantly as IMUs. Nevertheless, the "girls" we have are as pretty, if not prettier than IMUs, muahaahaahaa~

Girls marched in, armed with hair accessories, jewelleries, and best of all... MAKEUP! With an evil smirk on my face, I started to decorate them faces to my hearts evil content!

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Mr. Barbie, by Ngee Zheng.

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Mr. Siti Nurhaliza, by Kelvin.

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Mr. Whatever-Cup, by Chong Ngie.

Lovely, no? I give them full respect for being such a sport. Guys, welcome to female dominance!

I have the video of the "pageant" on my laptop, for those who are interested, please contact me personally.

As for this week, there will be a week long orientation, all happening at night, because classes begin during the day =( However, the ice-breaking night (this time it's for the participation of all the first years) was a total blast. We came in clean and powered up, and left drained, sticky, sweaty and FULL. One of the games involved sucking a watermelon dry with only, get this, a miserable looking straw. I'm so sick of watermelons now, I think I shall stay away from it for the next 3 months, at the very least!

We also got to meet loads of people. If there's one thing I love about this place, it will be its diversity of nationalities as well as religion. There is a large number of international students who are very impressive in every possible manner thus far. According to the CEO, there are students from over 40 countries constituting this truly international community. I have yet to meet one from each country, but I shall make this my long term goal on this campus. So far, I have met fantastic people from, Kenya, Mauritius, Sri Lanka, England, Hong Kong, Tanzania, etc. And yup, I'm having the time of my life just loitering on the corridors, occasionally pouncing on unsuspecting friends.

I still get to go home, every weekend. The reason why we ALL want to, is probably due to one reason, and one reason only. FOOD. Glorious home cooked food! The food in the cafeteria? Edible, but not appetizing. The food outside campus? Edible, and tasted great in comparison. The food back in KL/ at home? HEAVENLY! Campus food is pale by far. By far, I mean REAL FAR, as in lightyears and lightyears away. Well, the funniest thing has got to be our mode of transaction in the cafeteria.

Monopoly money!!!
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Lol, don't ask me how, nor ask me why. They may be just a tiny piece of paper, but they're worth as much as the value printed on it. Who knows? I might just scan them onto the computer and produce duplicates! Muahahaha...

Sadly, my knowledge on technology is nowhere near mediocre. This place here is full of freaking high-tech technology. They certainly make T-Gen and Blackboard 6 look horribly amature-ish. Heck, I don't even understand what are those even after attending an entire lecture on them. This is bad, real bad, for a tech noob as outdated as me who relies solely on obsolete equipment and softwares. Especially when they emphasized that they will be making full use of these faccilities. Gah, I shall go read up on what this technology mumbo-jumbo is all about. *mumbles* As if I don't have enough research to do after class... *toot* *toot* *toot*

Meanwhile, this is my latest accomplishment (may even be the only one) in the university. Teeheehee~ A million thanks to Ken & Lilian, my coaches!

Friday, September 15, 2006

Tensing up and releasing it

I woke up in horror as I stared into the mirror for the first time that day. Something evil is on my face. A Big Fat Zit. In a fit of rage, I hereby declare Sate Kajang GUILTY!

Oh why, did I surrender to its temptation of mouthwatering satay?
Oh why, did I over-indulge myself in such deadly food?
And now, I shall have to suffer the pain of the consequences. A zit is not just a zit. Its one of the most haunting torture, physically, mentally, emotionally... everything! The bad news that accompanies it is that its inevitable. Someone is bound to get one at some point of their lives. For those who brag about flawless complexions ALL THE TIME, you just wait and see!

Usually, when I get one, I try to avoid the mirrors. Because once I come into contact with one, I'll stare at it for minutes, at the same time wishing very very hard for a fairy wand to zap it to hell. I become a worry wart when I get one, I don't deny it. To helps ave myself, I went out for a movie with my cuzzies...

We watched My Super Ex-Girlfriend at Cineleisure's Cinema 6.

Rating: 6.5

I'd say its a decent enough distraction to keep me from the mirrors. At times, I feel like the movie is trying too hard to be funny. Out of the many attempts, there were only a miserable handful of scenes worthy of a short chuckle. The storyline, however, is something fresh, yet it deviates a little to the tacky side. As for the actors, they just weren't good looking enough to at least make the movie worth more of the viewers time. I thought, the acting was merely mediocre.

Enough about the movie, I now want to talk about the cinema. I remember Cineleisure, the only cinema who checked my Student ID for its expiry date. At that time, it has expired. But technically speaking, we're still students, right? It must be desperate to sell its adult tickets for their customer turnout is really rather pathetic. I can understand why. On my first visit there, that Student ID issue did nothing to encourage people to go back. The seats weren't as comfortable as GSC 1 Utama's. In addition to that, the hall was a little too empty for comfort, to extend of being a little creepy. Cinema aside, the Cineleisure building was practically empty, except for several souls wandering on the shop-less floors. I told myself I didn't like it, and will not go there voluntarily again. Since GSC 1 Utama's like nearby, why should I settle for less, huh? They charge the same! This time, I went back because my cuzzies who has just returned from the US and the UK (rich, lucky kids), wanted to try out the place. I went there, this time with hope, and left in disappointment. Hall 6 STINKS, literally, of unwashed socks. I know so, because I used to be a librarian of a library that rejects entrants with their shoes on. Phew... They should have some deodoriser handy. Their popcorns tasted sickly too. Whatever happened to the tradition of making good popcorns? They tasted sweet, but that was it. Other than that, the flavour is rather bland, and the aroma is nowhere to be found. The only thing that saved the day was Movie Day!

RM 6 for movies all day. Now I don't have to pay extra for having an already expired Student ID, teeheehee~ Not to mention I didn't have to pay a freaking sum of RM 10 for such a lousy cinema experience.

I know I'm tensed. I shall retreat to the nearby pond and feed our latest residents at Valencia Township. 6 beautiful ducklings!

Look, they swam so near that I could take this shot without any zooming. Aren't they adorable? Just feeding these graceful creatures makes me feel so much better. They reminded me of my loyal pet rooster of 5 years that my mom gave away before we moved here. *sobs*

Friday, September 08, 2006

Never underestimate an auntie

Sometimes, I just like to go out with my mom to pick up my still schooling siblings. This oppotunity promises me a chance to maneuver behind the wheel. Heh heh. My mom knows I'm such a big fan of Raikkonen, I wouldn't pass off the chance to drive like him, as if this poor Honda City is McLaren's MP4-21, IF she releases me on the road, unsupervised!

Call me inconsiderate if you like, but I gave up memorising my sibling's schedules years back. Not only are their timing are subject to change nearly every other week, no two days of schedule are identical, since... I don't know, forever? Plus, I have THREE other siblings! I'd rather reserve my constantly dying braincells for other stuff. Like people always say, MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS, right? What I'm so totally impressed with is my mom's super brain ability to keep track of everything in everyone's lives. She gave up her job in a legal firm more than a decade ago, to dedicate her time to carrying us all around KL and Selangor. Allow me to just state a brief example of her tough job. As a young girl, I lived in Kepong, studied in Ampang, attended tuition in Kota Raya, and PJ, among others. Yes there are more. And that's just me. I remember a year back, my mom was the "crazy" woman with 4 kids in 4 different schools, Taylors, Kepong (2), Lai Meng, and Bandar Utama Damansara (2). How she memorised all our off-times, holidays, who to pick first, who to drop next, which route to take, and who's got tuition next, etc, is unbelievable. Unlike certain families, we are not blessed with the power to afford a driver. Sure, we have a domestic helper in the house, who takes her own sweet time doing cleaning work ONLY. Mom still manages to juggle kids AND marketing AND cooking AND shopping AND bills!

I suppose you're wondering why am I assessing the syllabus of Mom-hood, out of the blue. Here's why.

Just to make myself clear, that's not my mom, not my brother and not our car. Haha, it's some random auntie I shot discreetly with my brand new handphone. Just take a look at those thunder thighs, I definitely don't want her charging at me with those waving her fists for photographing her. *sniggers*

Let me tell you what this auntie is all about. She has a daughter studying in SJK (C) Kepong 2, who finishes her "normal" classes at 1pm. After that, it will be followed by a compulsory "tuition" session in the extended school compound that will start after their 45 minutes lunch break. It ends somewhere around 4 something in the afternoon. The weird thing is, she'll be facing the same subject teachers in those classes. Those teachers must love their students so much they want to spend nearly all the time allowed by God for daylight just to be with them. But, nevermind that. What you see in this picture is the fully-equiped mom has parked her car in this strategic parking spot, waiting for her daughter. By the word "strategic", I mean the following: shady, less than 10 seconds from the entrance, has to come at least 30 minutes earlier to snatch it from other desperate moms. The next 30 minutes will be spent to open up the booth to create extra shade, blasting the air conditioner, setting up a little table with stools, bringing out their carefully prepared, nutritious homemade lunches, and pulling out a pair of glasses to spot her daughter. I tell you, its only a matter of time before these moms move on to a pair of binoculars. In less than a second after the school bell rang, a stampede will come into sight. All your see is little heads bobbing out of the school at FULL SPEED! The crowd itself is bad enough, without having your kid being hidden behind a gigantic schoolbag.

It's like some kind of telematch. I see the kid sprinting towards the auntie, who has her arms spread out in such a position that she could grab the schoolbag as the girl rushed pass her. Instinctively, I see the girl swallowing her lunch, while her mom unloaded some of the unnecessaries, such as a DICTIONARY! Might I add that, a typical chinese dictionary is about twice as big as The Oxford Dictionary?! And they don't carry those small pocket sized ones, because their schoolwork is so advanced, the tiny information deprived budget version just doesn't quite cut it. Then, I saw her magically pull our a hanky, wet it with a bottle of water, then rub it all over her face. Seriously, these aunties can think of everthing! That sight, just struck a chord in me.

They may be uneducated, scruffy, and a little rough on the edges. But, to working parents who earn 5 digits worth of moolah each month to spend on daycare, nannies and maids, they are incomparable super-moms.

**added on 14/09**

So long PIBG. Introducing the latest Student's Defense Council >>> PI (Persatuan Ibu). They attack in droves, and has built an army large enough to rival Julius Caesar's. I can't even capture all on a single camera screen! As for Bapa & Guru? Get your own stools.

Monday, September 04, 2006

The Legal Age.

My florist days are now over. With one job down, I've only got one job left to handle. Heh heh, a little more income doesn't hurt. Although I have decided to devote half of September to preparing for hostel life, I can't say I completely drowned in those preparations. Because... because... I don't know what to prepare!

Thank God I have managed to complete my shopping before the Mega Sales ended. That means that my clothes shopping list is done. I have a separate shopping list to cancel out now. I need pails, SEVERAL of them! (for washing and soaking, you know the drill...) Probably brooms, mops, rags, bedsheets, and pillows too. Not forgetting clothes detergent, dishes detergent, cleaning detergent, shower gels, shampoos, cleansers, and ample supply of instant food and beverages, canned stuff as well as junk snacks! I never thought living somewhere else would be such a hassle!

My previous interpretation of moving in was just, bring your clothes and yourself, that's it! The more you think about it, the more complicated it seems. But, no~ everything in life has to be so complex. And complications drive me nuts. As if the nervousness is not pushing me onto the brink of depression / nervous breakdown already. I believe, many of us have taken living-at-home life for granted, specifically luxuries such as the water heater, the air conditioning, and our loyal domestic helper. As such, I have surrendered to intense training on common domestic tasks, such as perfecting my culinary skills, washing clothes without a machine, sleeping without the air conditioner, and the worst yet, bathing in icy cold water. It sucks, it really did. Especially when all are done at once.

As if these are not bad enough, the bank turned down my application for an atm card. Simply because I'm not legally 18 yet. What the hell? Why is the world so biased? Just because one hasn't reached 'The Legal Age' yet, doesn't mean one can't handle the obstacles and challenges that are to come. Age is just a number. If this is in the 1950s, I wouldn't have argued. Over the years, educations systems have been improved, performance of kids have been bragged about in political mandates, even MILK POWDERS are so freaking high-tech armed with bacterias and AHA/DHA/whatever-A to enhance the development of babies brains, accelerating their journey from the realms of from gugu and gaga, to warcraft and dota even faster than ever. People are now maturing at such an alarming rate, that by 15 years old or so, they are much more capable than an average 20 year old decades back. They should consider an amendment on this matter ASAP.
Come on, chant with me.


Personally, I think 16 would be rather acceptable... for now.

It just leaves me wondering, whether if I can survive all this?