Wait for a while…

Time really seems to fly these days! I just went to see my doctor a month ago and it was time to go again for a follow-up and to replenish my prescriptions.

That previous time, I went at around 9.00 a.m. and I had to wait for so long and it was way over 11, almost noon when I was through. This time around, I thought I would go a bit early, at 8.00 a.m. but by the time I managed to find a parking space and walked all the way to the clinic, it was already 8.30 and goodness gracious me! The clinic was packed – no seat available in the waiting room! It was so nice going to see the doctor during the pandemic – not a single living soul around. I guess at the time, everyone was scared of catching the virus so it was better to just #staysafe and #stayhome.

The receptionist told me that I could go some place else and come back in an hour’s time at 9.30 and that was exactly what I did. I went to the coffee shop…

…the first one in the block of shops to the left.

I shall not attempt to interpret the meaning of its name…

…with my half-past-six command of Mandarin but I used to drop by here everytime my late mum was admitted into the medical centre next door and I would just order something from the noodles stall in front except for one occasion when I had the chap fan (mixed rice).

This time around, I thought I would order something from the chu char (cook and fry) section at the back and I ordered the Foochow fried noodles, wet (with sauce/gravy). However, as I was sitting there waiting, I had a change of heart and I asked the Indonesian helper if they had the special and she said yes. I told her I would have that instead. I was expecting to get something with a whole lot of extra ingredients such as liver and what not but this (RM16.00)…

…was what I was served in the end.

Yes, it did feel kind of expensive but there were two of these huge prawns…

A friend once told me that the estimated cost price of these prawns was RM3.00 each so deduct RM6.00 from the total, that would leave a balance of RM10.00.

Besides the crustaceans, there were so many slices of this lovely fish…

…that I enjoyed so much! I did not know what fish that was so I asked the boss and he said it was a labang – that sure did not help much as I never heard of the fish before. I googled to see what I could find and it turned out that it is a freshwater river fish, not one of those super-expensive ones but no, it is not cheap either, something alongside the lajong that we really like a lot!

Deduct RM4.00, the price for a regular plate of fried noodles here and that would leave RM6.00 for all that fish! Cheap! I also loved the fact that they were so generous with the green vegetables and yes, the mee (noodles)…

…had that much coveted wok hei fragrance. I would probably order the “moon” (braised) version the next time I drop by here for this though as the noodles were more on the firm side – I would like them a little bit softer (but not too soft and soggy).

While I was sitting there, enjoying my noodles, I caught the whiff of that lovely pulut panggang fragrance – some people at the next table were eating those. I did catch sight of them earlier but I did not bat an eyelid and simply ignored them as I would not settle for anything less than the very nice Hj. Luguk ones, just that I have not been to the kampung for a very long time so I do not know if those are still available or not.

In the end, I bought a few (RM1.20 each)…

…home to try and yes, much to my delight, they…

…were very nice! They were perfectly done, well-panggang-ed enough to give them that very nice smoked fragrance and yes, it was quite lemak (rich with santan/coconut milk) too though I felt it could do with a little bit more santan, just a little bit so it would be more lemak.

I heard people singing praises of the ones here but no, I do think these were a whole lot nicer. I would much sooner drop by here to buy anytime I feel like having some pulut panggang.

It was around 9.30 a.m. when I got back to the clinic – obviously, some had left and I was able to grab a seat. Thankfully, I did not have to wait too long this time around and I was out of there by 10 something!

HAO KE LAI CAFE & REST (2.292095, 111.836698) is located along Lorong Mahsuri 1B, off Jalan Pedada, in the block of shops to the left of the Rejang Medical Centre, main building.

365 days of a year…

The other day, I noticed this on my dashboard: Check out the fireworks you created on your 2014 Annual Report so I clicked on it and this was what I got…

2014 Annual Report 1

Gee! That was nice, I thought.

I scrolled down and saw this…

2014 Annual Report 2

Of course, I had a post a day, 365 days in a year without fail…and at the time of writing, the total number of posts has already increased to 2,573 from the day the report was published.

According to them, these were the posts that got the most number of views in the year…

2014 Annual Report 3

Top on the list was that time in 2013 when I was so pissed off with our national courier, Poslaju Malaysia as the consignment I sent to Seremban in Negeri Sembilan took almost a week to arrive despite its assurance that it would arrive the very next day – Dijamin sampai hari esok. I am surprised that there were still people reading it in 2014.

Now, it certainly was with very much interest to note that one very old post of mine was next on the list – this one features a patriotic poem that I wrote way before I retired from government service/teaching and since its publication, I have had people asking for permission to use it at their school assemblies, come August 31st or September 16th every year. You can see some of them in the comments on that post.

Third came the post on the making of The Kitchen’s instant kampua noodles. Hmmm…I certainly did not expect that to get so many views. I guess this and all the rest that I had on the noodles must have helped in some small way in promoting them to the general public so much so that the man behind the venture, Eric, saw it fitting to give me a special dinner treat even though he was not obliged in any way to do anything of the sort. That certainly was so sweet and generous of him.

The fourth on the list was written during that very sad time in the year with the extremely tragic and untimely passing of a very very dear friend of mine, Jimmy. It has almost been a year now and ever so often, I still think of him and there have been times when I missed him, his infectious laughter and his delightful company so much and I will never ever forget his selflessness, his readiness to be there whenever anyone needed him and of course, his unsurpassed generosity. He certainly was  a true friend, one that is so very hard to find, if at all that is possible. Without a second thought, I knew then that I just had to make the trip to his hometown for his funeral to see him one more time and bid him the last farewell…and to this day, the question remains – WHY?

Number 5 is another post on The Kitchen’s instant kampua noodles. I guess when people google for it, they will get the links to my blog so in a way, it has helped in increasing the traffic to my blog…or so it seems, not that it matters much to me as mine is not a money-spinning blog unlike those monetised ones that are desperate for an avalanche of views so they would be able to earn more. Right now, the total number of views has gone past 1.5 million, over 1,592,000 to be exact and the comments on the numerous posts currently totals around 72,000 with the best day in 2014 being Tuesday, February 18th, 2014. the day of Jimmy’s funeral.

Now where did all these people come from?

2014 Annual Report 4

According to the chart, they came from all over the globe, 152 countries altogether but the majority came from Malaysia with “Australia and the United States not far behind“.

Ironically, the posts that garnered the most number of comments in 2014 was Say something – a wordless post…and yet, many certainly had a lot to say about it, 56 comments altogether. LOL!!! Many came, some went…and according to the report, in 2014, these were the top commenters for the year…

2014 Annual Report 5

Hmmmm….it would be interesting to see the list in 2015. Will it still comprise this same 5 people or would they be knocked off the pedestal by some newbies to the blog? That, we will have to wait and see.

So, that wraps up 2014 – thank you all for your support, for never failing to drop by and most of all, for commenting – your comments are what keep me going, I assure you. Otherwise, it would feel like I am sitting here talking to myself and yes, I may be old but I am not that old yet and I am certainly not ready to go in that direction just yet. Cheers to all!

I hope…

I hope that the world stops raining..
…Nobody here is blameless
I hope that we can fix all that we’ve done…
…I hope that we still have a dream
I’m hoping that change isn’t hopeless,
I’m hoping to start it with me
I just hope I’m not the only one
Yes, I just hope I’m not the only one

I hope we start seeing forever
Instead of what we can gain in a day
I hope we start seeing each other
Cause don’t we all bleed the same?
I really hope someone can hear me…
…Hope I find a voice within me to scream at the top of my lungs
I just hope I’m not the only one
I just hope I’m not the only one

Louder! I cannot hear you
How can things be better left unsaid?
Call me, call me a dreamer
But it seems that dreams are all that we’ve got left

I hope that we still have a heartbeat
I hope we don’t turn to stone
At night when you turn the lights off
I hope you don’t cry alone
I hope we stop taking for granted
All of the land and all of the sea
I’m taking a chance on loving
I hope that you take it with me

I just hope I’m not the only one…

Hope and pray

These are sad times for us in our country and also in the world at large. Nonetheless, A HAPPY NEW YEAR 2015, everyone! Let us hope and pray that God will bless us all with a good year ahead…

How will I live…

A friend of mine shared this on Facebook, something that has been translated from the original in Chinese and I do think that it makes a whole lot of sense and there are things that everyone should bear in mind in his or her life…to lead a happy and meaningful one. Go on, read it for yourself and let me know what you think:

There are 1000-year-old trees in the mountain, but not many 100-year-old people. At the most, you will live until 100 years old, only 1 in 100,000. If you are 70, you only have 30 years left. If you are 80, you only have 20.


Because you do not have many years to live, and you cannot take along things when you go, you do not have to be too thrifty. Spend the money that should be spent, enjoy what should be enjoyed and do not leave very much to your children or grandchildren, for you do not want them to become parasites.

Do not worry too much about your children for they will have their own destiny and find their own way. Do not expect too much from your children. Caring children, though caring, would be too busy with their jobs and commitments to render any help. Uncaring children may fight over your assets even when you are still alive, and wish for your early demise so they can inherit your property. Your children take for granted that they are rightful heirs to your wealth; but you have no claims to their money.

Do not worry about what will happen after you are gone because when you return to dust, you will no longer feel whatever praises or criticisms there may be. Avoid people that cause stress.

Once you are old, do not trade in your health for wealth anymore because your money may not be able to buy your health. When should you stop making money, and how much is enough? A hundred, a thousand, a million, ten million? Out of a thousand hectares of good farm land, you can only consume a handful of rice daily; out of a thousand mansions, you only need eight square meters of space to rest at night. So as long as you have enough food and enough money to spend, that is good enough.

You should live happily. Every family has its own problems. Just do not compare yourself with others for fame and social status and see whose children are doing better. Do not worry about things that you cannot change because it does not help and it may spoil your health. You have to create your own well-being and find your own happiness. Think about happy things, do happy things daily and have fun in doing them, then you will pass your time happily every day.

One day passes, you will lose one day.
One day passes with happiness, and you gain one day.
In good spirit, sickness will cure; in happy spirit, sickness will cure fast;
In good and happy spirit; sickness will never come.

Above all, learn to cherish the goodness around ……and your FRIENDS – they all make you feel young and wanted and without them, you are sure to feel lost.

Live life

New Year’s Day…

It’s New Year’s Day, the 1st of January, 2014.

We have said goodbye to the old year and as we welcome the new one, here’s a special wish for you…

New Year's wish

…and for me! Cheers!!!

All around, I’ve been hearing moans and groans as to how terrible this coming year is going to be and chances are those same people were singing the exact same tune this time last year. Some things, it seems, will never change. On my part, however, I would rather cross the bridges when I come to them. After all, why should we spoil our mood? If it is going to happen, it will happen…and if it isn’t, at least, we would not have ruined the joy of this festive season not only for ourselves but for everyone else over nothing.

Haven’t we gone through the best of times and the worst of times? I do not know about the rest of you but I choose to be optimistic and believe that if I put my trust in God, I can weather through any storm that may blow my way and to Him, I pray…

Serenity Prayer

…and hopefully, all of you will join me too in wishing one another a Blessed and very Happy New Year, 2014. May God bless us all, everyone…

…Even heavy days have something to reveal
And the wounds remind us of the One who heals

When your heart has frozen over by a lifetime of regret
When the scars you wear have hardened into stone
May the spirit of the season come and melt the ice again
Thaw the coldest winter heart and call it home
And if we lose sight of all that we could be
May we stumble to the One who makes us see

So I say, God bless us
God bless us, God bless us
Everyone, everyone…

No money…

I have this plant in my garden and somebody says that it is the money tree. I don’t know if it is or not – perhaps, it is the feng shui money tree but whatever it is, a windfall does not seem to be forthcoming, not at all.

It sprouts out of the soil as a bud…

Money tree 1

as the folded leaves push their way out…

Money tree 2

and gradually unfold…

Money tree 3

and grow bigger…

Money tree 4

…and bigger…

Money tree 5

But as time goes by, they get old and turn yellow…

Money tree 6

and then brown and drop off the stalk which will wither and shrink away leaving behind an old wrinkled stump.

In a way, it serves to remind me about life, for by the sweat of your face, you shall eat bread till you return to the ground for out of it you were taken; for you are dust, and to dust you shall return, (Genesis 3:19) and indeed, if it is money that one wants, one would have to work (hard) for it and I must say that I am blessed considering that I am now retired and enjoying a well-earned rest after all my years of working, getting by pretty well on my monthly pension.

I am thankful that I have a comfortable life and it does not really matter one bit that I am not rich and basking in the lap of luxury. After all…

Do unto others

for “…to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me,” (Matthew 25:40) and this, I do believe.

Have a Holy Sunday, everybody…and may God bless us all.


A friend of mine shared this on Facebook the other day and I thought it was so beautiful – something that I myself would like to share with everyone here…

When I was a kid, my mom liked to make breakfast food for dinner every now and then. I remember one night in particular when she had made breakfast after a long, hard day at work. On that evening so long ago, my mom placed a plate of eggs, sausage and extremely burnt biscuits in front of my dad.

I remember waiting to see if anyone noticed! Yet all my dad did was reach for his biscuit, smile at my mom and ask me how my day was at school. I don’t remember what I told him that night, but I do remember hearing my mom apologise to my dad for burning the biscuits. And I’ll never forget what he said: “Honey, I love burnt biscuits.”

Later that night, I went to kiss Daddy good night and I asked him if he really liked his biscuits burnt. He wrapped me in his arms and said, “Your momma put in a long hard day at work today and she’s real tired. And besides, a burnt biscuit never hurts anyone!”

Life is full of imperfect things… and imperfect people. I’m the best at hardly anything, and I am just like everyone else. What I’ve learned over the years is that learning to accept each other’s faults and choosing to celebrate each other’s differences are among the most important keys to creating a healthy, growing and lasting relationship.

Life is too short to wake up with regrets. ENJOY LIFE NOW – IT HAS AN EXPIRY DATE! So…please pass me a biscuit. And yes, the burnt one will do just fine! It is in our imperfections that we are perfect… And please share this with someone who has enriched your life. I just did!

Have a Blessed Sunday, everyone…

Heartiest congratulations to my blogger-friend, Isaac Tan, who is tying the knot in Penang today…

Isaac & Janice
*Isaac Tan’s photo on Facebook*

Here’s wishing you and Janice, Isaac, blue skies and everything nice in the years ahead. May your life together be perpetually blessed with abundant bliss. Cheers!!!

My special angel…

My daughter came across this book just the other day…

Special daughter 1

I remember that I bought that for her a long time ago but I cannot recall exactly when that was, what the occasion was and where I had bought it. However, as I browsed through the pages, I found the lines so very heart-warming and as meaningful now as they must have been then…and here, I would like to share some extracts with you…

Special daughter 2

You are just so special
And I really hope you know
You’ll always mean the world to me
Wherever you may go…

Of all the gifts that I’ve received
So precious and so rare
There’s nothing else that I could have
Which ever could compare…

…To the joy and love you bring
To my life each minute
My world’s a happy, special place
Because it has you in it

You’re a very special daughter
Who I love with all my heart
And I’ve been so very proud of you
Right from the very start…

When you were a little child
And I’d watch over you
I saw you learn from your mistakes
As day by day you grew…

Special daughter 3

Your journey through life so far
Has given me such pleasure
And every day had filled my heart
With love I cannot measure…

I am so very grateful
For all you do for me
And I am so very proud
Of all that you’ve achieved…

You are very precious
And I just want to say
That you’re always in my thoughts
Whether near or far away

Whatever you go through in life
You know I’ll understand
And I’ll always be there for you
If you need a helping hand

Whenever things are getting you down
And you are feeling blue
I hope you will remember
How much I care for you…

Although you and I are family
We’re really more like friends
And the special bond we share
Is the sort that never ends

Special daughter 4

Special daughter 5

Special daughter 6

I guess most, if not all of you, like me, would find these lines from the book so beautiful and touching…

Have a great week ahead!

Just in case any of you is suffering from withdrawal symptoms owing to the absence of food in this post, these were the fluffy and yummy pancakes that Melissa made for tea the other day…

Melissa's pancakes

“So good you can even eat it on its own!” Drool! Drool! LOL!!!

How great Thou art…

O Lord my God, when I in awesome wonder,
Consider all the worlds Thy Hands have made;

Desert Rose 1

I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder,
Thy power throughout the universe displayed.

Desert Rose 2

When through the woods, and forest glades I wander,
And hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees.

Desert Rose 3

When I look down, from lofty mountain grandeur
And see the brook, and feel the gentle breeze.

Desert Rose 4

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art.

Desert Rose 5

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

Desert Rose 6

Have a Blessed Sunday, everybody…and A HAPPY FATHER’S DAY to all daddies.

P.S. The flower in my garden has bloomed again the other night. I have posted on it a number of times…but if any of you have missed those earlier posts, you can click here, here or here, should you be interested in finding out more about it.

The climb…

Well, that is what life is all about, isn’t it? One long, hard and seemingly-endless climb. I bet everyone will agree that this past year has not been great with the H1N1 pandemic, the worsening economic downturn and the petrol price hike, the natural disasters such as the Padang earthquake, devastating typhoons and floods in the Philippines and in Taiwan, for instance…

Whatever it is, we’ve survived through all that and another year is here…and whatever lies ahead, we will keep climbing and doing the best we can.

This is the New Year No. 1 single in the UK, X Factor 2009 winner, Joe McElderry, with his rendition of Miley Cyrus’ “The Climb”. The lyrics of this song reflects my sentiments exactly as we brace ourselves to face another year ahead…

I can almost see it
That dream I’m dreaming of
There’s a voice inside my head saying
“You’ll never reach it”
Every step I’m taking
Every move I make feels
Lost with no direction
My faith is shaking

And I, I gotta keep trying
Gotta keep my head held high
So it’s gonna be another mountain
I’m always gonna wanna make it move
Always gonna be an uphill battle
Sometimes I’m gonna have to lose
Ain’t about how fast I get there
Ain’t about what’s waiting on the other side
It’s the climb

The struggles I’m facing
The chances I’m taking
Sometimes might knock me down
But no, I’m not breaking
I may not know it
But these are the moments that
I’m gonna remember most, yeah
Just gotta keep going

And I, I got to be strong
Just keep pushing on
‘Cause there’s always gonna be another mountain
Always gonna wanna make it move
Always gonna be a uphill battle
Sometimes I’m gonna have to lose
Ain’t about how fast I get there
Ain’t about what’s waiting on the other side
It’s the climb, yeah yeah!

Keep the faith, keep your faith.

And yes indeed, keep the faith, keep our faith…in ourselves and in God, and we’ll make it through whatever lies ahead…somehow. My daughter will be leaving for New Zealand next month to continue her studies – I will be praying for her and wishing her well in her climb…and let us pray for ourselves too in our daily endeavours and undertakings, our climb.

Wishing everybody a Happy New Year and may 2010 be a good one for one and all.