Monday, 28 April 2008

"Why So Angry?"...



I am in the middle of the tedious affair of getting all the documents ready for me to go to Canada...


And as luck would have it, my passport is expiring in September this year, which means I needed to get it done, in order to apply for my student permit/visa. I dreaded having to go to the Immigration Department, because the last time I was there, it was a mess...Too many people, too few customers, and seriously too little patience and courtesy on the part of the officers...


So I was quite surprised when I popped into the new building in the God-saken place near the Jelapang toll...I arrived early as my dad dropped me on his way to work, and surprise, I was allowed to take a number even before 8 am...In fact, by 8 am, I had already gotten all the forms filled up and the officer was already finger-printing me...


I was then given the collection slip stating I could collect my passport at 10 am...Imagine my bigger surprise when I actually got my passport at 10 am sharp...

Not bad! Not bad at all...In fact, having been used to very inefficient service in the past (like waiting to get my IC done for over 5 hours), this was very impressive!

*Clap Clap*



Looks like finally what they report in the papers is what is actually happening...



Try visiting Penang Hospital's Klinik Pakar, and you will see a different story...They report in the newspaper of patients claiming they only wait 10-15 minutes...

Take it from someone who has been there...The average waiting time (even when you arrive at 7.45 am, before clinic starts to take a number) is about 2 hours, just to see the doctor...This is because they schedule God-knows-how-many patients in the same time frame, and appointments start at 9 am...The doctors however, only (usually) come to the clinic at 10 am, after finishing their rounds...

So if you think you can come at 8.45 am for your 9 am appointment, you would find yourself waiting until after noon because hey, you've gotta take a number along with all the other people who've got the same appointment time (and those whose appointment time is later, but who came early for a number)...

Anyway, that story is for another day...




Anyway, incidentally, I also got my IC changed (don't ask how, but the old one is in the process of spliting into two), and that too was attended to within minutes (although collection is in a few weeks)!



And while we're on the subject, I remember watching this video-clip of the Canadian comedian Russell Peters a while back and he was poking fun at how the Canadian Immigration required people taking photographs for their passport to not smile, and their lips had to be touching, and he quipped about how he looked darn pissed in his photo...


He even quipped (paraphrased): 'If you want to catch a terrorist, get everyone to smile. And if you find someone who doesn't want to smile, question him!'


I thought he was blowing it out of proportion like he always does...




Until I needed to take a photograph for my Canadian student permit...


Instructions:

"The face must be square to the camera with a neutral expression, neither frowning nor smiling, with the mouth closed"


Aiks...


I tried my best to look pleasant without smiling, but gosh, it is so hard, because I naturally have the corners of my lips turned up slightly...So I forced my mouth into as set a shape as I could...

The result?


I look pissed...And ready to eat someone...


The first thing my dad said when he saw the photo was: "Why so angry?"


Go figure...




Thursday, 24 April 2008

25th April 2008: Remembering Nurin Jazlin...



Nurin Jazlin Jazimin
11th September 1999-17th September 2008.




Today's the 25th of April 2008, and Mr David Santos of Portugal has sent out a heartfelt request that blogs around the world display the image of Nurin on this day. He also left me a comment asking me to do the same...



Have Malaysians all forgotten Nurin (May she Rest in Peace) or Nini, or the boy Yan (who was later found)? I think we have. I see children being allowed to wonder shopping complexes alone, children hanging around on the roads, and with no adult in sight...



I hope that history will not repeat itself, and there won't be another parent who comes in the newspaper saying their child went out (alone) but never came back, and where they put all the hope of finding a child on what the 8, 9, 10 year-old sibling saw at the playground/market/shop etc...Because really, even adults who are so much taller than these kids can't give any reliable info, what more a child whose height allows him/her to only see things at his current height?




I want to extend my deepest gratitude to Mr Santos for taking the initiative to remind us to be more vigilant...


Please watch your children, people, and to those who don't have children, you can still help keep an eye on them. If you see them wandering aimlessly alone in the malls, take them to the security counter. If you see them alone in playgrounds, keep a close watch on them, and if you see any suspicious behaviour, yell at the person to arouse attention of people around (better look like a fool than be sorry).


Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Of Mee Rebus Tuesday (MRT) and The Olympic Torch!...



The Olympic Torch! Clockwise from left: Aunty Dalilah, Aunty MarinaM, Aunty Nuraina, Kak Pi, Me and Aunty Maria (in black)...




Ah...After hearing about the super-famous Mee Rebus Tuesday, I finally got to attend one of my own...



I was very lucky that Kak Pi was going down for MRT to meet up with Jacqui, so I got to crash into her car lar...And my BFB (big fat butt) got to warm her car seat all the way down to KL...


We were the earliest to make our way to Aunty Maria's house, and while fumbling with her gate, I heard somebody shout "Pi, Pi!", and I was looking all around until Kak Pi said "Look up there!", and there was Aunty Maria waving from her bedroom window...



Anyway, Aunty Maria's mee rebus is good (Thanks for the lovely meal!), I tell you, and I shamelessly had two helpings (Kerp, I ate up your share!). There was of course alot of yakkings, and Elviza even said: "You learn alot of things sitting here and listening. And when they run out of things to say, they share recipes. Seriously!"







From left: Me, Elviza, Aunty Dalilah and Kak Pi...




I was positively looking forward to going for MRT, for a few reasons...Firstly, going for MRT means my exams finish ler...Secondly, I have been wanting to meet a few bloggers that I never got to meet, namely Aunty Maria, Elviza, Aunty Dalilah, Mat Salo and Doc Tokasid (unfortunately, the last two didn't make it)...






Argh! Cannot run with the torch, can hold also jadi lar...




And you guys would never believe what I got to touch today...The Olympic Torch! Go eat your hearts out people...Aunty MarinaM, one of the bearers of the torch graciously brought the torch with her, and I got to raba the torch, you know!






Oooops...And Rikey had to catch it on camera...




Daphne's own Olympic Torch...On right is Aunty Maria, and Kak Pi's fingers =)




And Daphne being Daphne, she managed to 'break' a chair in Aunty Maria's house...I was trying to lift a chair when all of a sudden, the entire handle came off, and dear Rikey had his camera ready and caught me in the act of trying to put it back...Turns out the chair memang rosak adi, but they didn't tell me!

Aunty Marina even said: "Ah Daphne, how to go to Canada? You leave a trail of destruction wherever you go!"


Aiya...Don't lar say so loud...*Shy*



And then Aunty Maria called for everyone to go to the dining area, and she brought out a cake...I was happily asking "Whose birthday?!?", and there was Kak Pi pulling my arm, and I reached the dining table and saw this:





Oh hey! The cake has my name...





Chocolate Indulgence Cake...It reads: "Daphne, We're all happy 4u. Congratulations!"




Aww shucks guys (Aunty Dalilah, special mention to you)...Thanks alot!





Posing...Posing...Posing...From left: Rocky, Zorro, Aunty Maria, Kak Pi, Me, A Voice, Captain Yusof, Aunty MarinaM, and Aunty Dalilah...





Still can't enough of the torch! From left: Me, Elviza, Kak Pi (seated), Aunty MarinaM, Aunty Maria, Aunty Dalilah, Jacqui and Husna...




Whatever it is, I had a great time! Real great just sitting back and chatting with everyone who was so warm and Malaysian-ly friendly...

Thanks everyone, and Kak Pi for bringing me down...=)




Note: Some photos stolen from Rikey...


Thursday, 17 April 2008

Do You Know Kajang?



I went to a government office to get some stuff done the other day, but the officer had a case in another part of the building...


While waiting, the receptionist, A, who was working there started chatting with me, and very soon, we were laughing and giggling like a bunch of old friends...At one point, she asked me what I was studying, and I replied 'Psychology'...




To which A said: "Oh, saya suka sangat Psychology. Macam ni, you kenal Kajang lar."

Me: "Eh? Siapa tu (Completely blur)?"

A: "La, pelajar Psychology tak kenal Kajang? Apa ni?"

Me: "Er, satay Kajang tahu lar...Orang dengan nama Kajang saya tak kenal lar"

A: "Adoi, macam mana you tak kenal? Dia femes tau! Hebat lar dia"

Me: "Err...Betul-betul tak kenal lar. Macam mana eja ya (Was determined to go home and Google this famous guy)?"




When she replied, I had to really exert a lot of self-control to not giggle...



Guess who she was talking about?




CARL JUNG (Pronounce 'Carrll Yoong')




Me: "Oh, dia ya? Kenal-kenal! Kawan Sigmund Freud tu!"

A: "Hah...Tadi kata tak kenal dia..."



Oh well...A made my wait not so boring...=)


Saturday, 12 April 2008

Thank You For The Smiles...


Once I calmed down enough, I opened the scholarship letter and read it...properly...


A few lines jumped out at me, and two of them were: "The Scholarship Committee was particularly impressed with the overall excellence of your application......"

"It is expected that recipients will energetically be involved and assume a leadership role in......and community outreach activities. "...




And while chatting with my friend Ae Mi on MSN, I ventured this little thought, that hey, perhaps, dear Chee Keong has been playing a hand in my sudden stroke of good luck, and we both laughed at the thought of him weilding his 'influence' up in Heaven...

But really, if it were not for all the special children I had the chance of working with, my application would have not been what it was...I wrote my personal essay (on a national/international issue and its personal importance to me) on the pressing need for the world as a whole to not forget the special people in our midst, because they have as much right as us to live.



Why was it important to me? Because Chee Keong's memories stay with me...


There were quite a few essays to write; another equal amount of recommendation letters from teachers to get written, and among the questions the scholarship committee wanted to know was why I wanted to choose this particular field of study/work.



Today, I want to pay tribute to some of the smiles that I have had the chance of sharing...






A small group of special children I spent some time with at the Al-Hidayah Islam Kindergarten in Pasir Panjang...






From left: Jiun Wei, Me, and dear Bernice who suffers from vision impairment and is a slow learner...She is the sweetest girl, and always remembers her 'please' and 'thank you's'...






Little Ernest who is blind, with me. He is an affectionate child, who loves cars (can identify model by touch!) and his heart sees a whole lot more than us 'normal vision' people...






Shahirah, a darling child with Down Syndrome...She loves my lap (the minute I squat or sit, she will be on it!), and was extremely fascinated with my braces...






Me and Lee Son, another child with Down Syndrome. He refers to girls as 'beautiful', and horse-poo as 'not beautiful', and actually asked me to take a picture with him. Directly behind me is 18 year-old Xin En, and on her left is 17 year-old Esther (all with Downs)...







Khai Yue and Me...The little darling was raising her hand in response to her mum's question: "Who is Khai Yue?"...Ain't she sweet?





And the little boy who never fails to make me smile, no matter how bad my day is: Chee Keong...




What has all these got to do with the 'overall excellence' that I mentioned above?


I believe it was the lessons I learnt about love, patience, giving, wonder, passion, joy and a whole long list that I cannot possible mention, which made a difference...


I believe that in the final analysis, it is not what I have done (because I am willing to bet there are a whole lot more deserving candidates in terms of things 'done') which counted, but what I learnt from them which mattered...I guess you could say I had an unfair edge because these kids found me...


And I believe that those smiles you see above say a lot...=)


And to all of you reading this blog, thank you for sharing in the stories...



Wednesday, 9 April 2008

Daphne Is Crying...Like A Baby...



Argh!


Ok, so that wasn't the crying part, but the screaming non-stop like an idiot part...


I have been trying desperately to load photos on my blog, after taking nearly 2 days to log in...Needless to say, since you see no photos, the uploading of photos was a complete failure ler...


Anyway, change of plans! I have something new to blog about...


I got a full-tuition-fee *scholarship to study in the Canadian University of my choice! I spent nearly 2 months putting together my application, and spent a few months of fretting and worrying about whether I missed anything...



I don't generally follow feng-shui-ish stuff, but dear Aunty Rita was so sweet to prepare a personal feng-shui chart for me, that I thought I'd give it a shot! But drat it, I had no compass, so the best I could do was wear green...Haha! Thanks Aunty Rita!


Anyway, I finally got an answer today, and I am sooooo happy!





So, Daphne is crying like a baby now...

Call me a bragging little b****, but really, I don't care at the moment...I am so happy, I just need to tell...Somebody...Anybody...Everybody!



More later!



*Trent (University) International Global Citizen Tuition Scholarship




Thursday, 3 April 2008

Patience Needed: Will Beg, Borrow or Steal...



Patience...That's one thing you need a lot of when you live with other people, and when you share a room with people you don't know at all...


I have a roomate, and at times, I want to cekik her nicely...


When I told my mum I was getting a new roomate after my old one left, she was like "Aiya. I hope you get a nice one"...


I was thinking the exact same thing...And I told my mum I would hold my tongue...


But 2 hours after she moved in, I had to open this mouth that I said I would keep shut...


You know why? She wears the same bedroom slippers to the common bathroom/toilet, bathes in it etc, and then walks the corridor in it, and into the bedroom, in the same slippers...

Sorry, but I just couldn't keep quite knowing she was wearing the same slippers into the room when I share the same floor! Who knows what fungi and moss she could be bringing in? It does not help that my room is aircond, which makes it excellent ground to harvest God-knows-what (it's cool)...And my friends and I sometimes sit on the floor...



And ever since she moved in, I've been having to exercise a lot of self-control when it comes to this mouth...


First of all, after we got to know each other, she asked me if I had a boyfriend, to which I said no...But she does not believe me...


So everytime I go online to chat, or to do whatever, and I happen to burst out laughing in front of the computer, she would immediately drop everything and come and sit behind me to see what I am up to, saying: "Oh chatting dengan cowok (boy) yeah?"

Yeah, she reads behind my shoulder, hoping to 'catch' me in the act of communicating with my 'boyfriend'...



Sorry, but if there's one thing that ticks me off, it's people reading over my shoulder without any invited-reason...She reads over my shoulder when I'm doing my assignment, when I'm writing my blog, when I'm chatting! It came to a point that I would purposely switch screens, open a halfway loading page and stare at the screen, hoping she would get the hint that I would not continue what I was doing until she left...


And when we are doing our work side-by-side and she is chatting with her boyfriend (he's in Indonesia), she would interrupt me every few minutes so that she can show me how her boyfriend says 'I Love You'...


And then, she has this habit of refusing to clean the room (that's the downside when your roomie comes from a super-rich family who has quite a few maids)...My old roomie and I had an unspoken agreement that we would clean the room, depending on who is more free...Like if I happened to be the 'freer' one, I would sweep and she would do it the next round...But we swept our room around twice a day, on average...


This roomate, doesn't sweep...I memang pantang seeing hair on the floor, so I am always picking up all my hair (and my old roomie used to do it too)...Now, not only do I have to pick up my hair, I have to pick up hers too! The aircond is directed at my side of the room, so all the hair is forever pooling at my area! In case anyone is planning on asking, I know it's her hair cos it's about twice the length of mine, and hers is ironed-straight =)



If she won't even sweep, needless to say, she has never mopped lar...


It has come to a point that I have given up on sweeping her side of the room, or even mopping. I have been doing it for about 4 months, and I have decided I will be selfish and only clean my side, cos I refuse to be her maid...

In fact, when I came home from the hospital (was away for a week), my mother who was helping me carry my stuff in nearly fainted...There were dirty pots, cups, pans and plates all over the room, all stacked up...The food had dried in the pot, and even crusted!



Ok, so I am not a clean-freak, and I live in my own cluttered-ness (organised clutter, they call it =)), but I'm not that dirty...


Haih...


And she has this horrible habit of slamming the door all times of the day, even when I am asleep, that it jolts me up and I just can't drift off again...And until today, I wonder why I bother to take my time to pull the door when she is asleep so I won't wake her...


You really need a lot of patience when sharing a room (unless you want to get into a catfight), and I am seriously running out of it...



Anybody want to sell, loan, lend, steal for, or buy me some? Please?