2009

December 21st, 2009

I was reading our Everest website blogs. Things really are quite different when read retrospectively. It is also scary how fast some things get forgotten and so I would like to recapture the regular habit of updating my blog every now and then.

I was telling Esther today that 2009 would be one of the most significant year in the course of our lives for a while to come. Think most of us can agree on that. It is when a five year wait has come to an end. It’s like biking on a trail with no side paths for five years and suddenly the scenery changes. the trail changes. Everything is no longer as predictable. Options open up.  Then where will you go. which path shall you take. Choosing one means you never see where the others bring you. Refusing to choose means you stay put and stop moving ahead.

The more I age, the more I think that options only serve to confuse you and put you on guard. I buy more stuff in a shop with less options, less variety. I get overwhelmed by variety and I end up abandoning all options. Or rather, with variety, I tend to look for the unique piece or the one that sticks out distinctively. When in a circumstance of less options, i might have easily choosen any other mediocre item. Of course, this has only been tested wrt shopping especially shopping in Bangkok two weeks ago. Haven’t given much thought to whether it extrapolates to other more crucial aspects of life.

Age. GY tells Esther Everest has aged us five years due to the sheer extremes the body is put thru.There I was thinking that exercise makes us younger, more youthful etc.

Skiing last week in a white out reminds me of the miserable base camp days when there’s no sun. It also confirmed that down is still my best friend. I will acquire a down vest one day. 

I also discovered that soaking in 41.5 degrees is more enjoyable after dipping in 19 degrees. And that 19 degrees is less intimidating when you are wholly immersed in it.Hokkaido really has impressive crabs. Everest base camp food talk has finally materialized. Crabs so huge they touch your neighbours at the table.  

Curly is also the new straight with regards to post intensive training hairstyles.

And the Indon ‘tai tai’ life for a few weeks post expedition where I made the realization that the dream life for most gals to find a rich husband is a fallacy. It’s hardly the dream life unless your pooches and shopping malls are you best friends. Or the salons and manicurists are your pals. It’s so lonely and adventure is better sought with a group of pals. Give me mountain biking anytime with sweat, dirt and post exercise feast.

Although paragliding was fun especially the instant you get lifted off the ground, and white water rafting was the weekend getaway trip and Bandung ignited an interest in snake skin. 

The more I write the more I remember.

2009 marks the end of a two year business. The path of an entrepreneur, I have come to realise, is lonely and limiting when you past the initial learning curve. The path of a successful partnership follows that of our team – common vision.

Trailblazer remains fun and with my parents at genting with us, we now have fantastic photos and the genting amusement park continues to amuse.I had a list of stuff I want to do for a while. 2 of which were learn guitar and motor. Post expedition, I have also done both and am still trying to master them.

Now I am contemplating a dog after the christmas in KL.

Wow. when you list them down like that, it makes it seems like a really eventful year. I nearly forgot about the triathlons in PD and Desaru and also the swimming. Then there’s the ride up Fraser’s hill in the rain!!! and witnessing a carbon bike built from scratch.

and I am overwhelmed. Didn’t set out to type a long post.  

The number 25

February 6th, 2009

You know the story about this note. the question is why stop at 25. Let’s start a new note called 100. It’s fun doing this cos it’s always fun to talk about ourselves…

1. I just realised today that I have no life cos I have been gyming, climbing staircases n training for Everest for the longest time. So here I am, engaged in this very unhealthy activity of telling you things about myself.

2. I can speak a bit of Thai and am now trying to learn Malay n Cantonese. Ideally though, I would would be speaking French n more Thai if I weren’t such a miser. I think knowing different languages is particularly useful for talking behind pp’s back in foreign lands.

3. I have been thinking of keeping a cat for the longest time (1 yr) but am apprehensive because the last pet I had was a tortoise and it had been dead for weeks before I realised it.

4. I never turn on the water heater or the air conditioner in my house. So I usually jump in the shower and sweat in my sleep.

5. I love pajamas and I wear them every night. However, I do not wash them every night.

6. I have a set of pillows accumulated since when I was a baby and I love them so much I once thought I would be most contented dying with them all over my face.

7. I can’t bear to throw old stuff away so I have a constant struggle with my neat freak Mum on the state of my stuff in my room. Though over the years, my collection of stuff has been silently disappearing and I have learnt to pretend otherwise.

8. I love my house. The location is superb. The neighbourhood is not cluttered. My house is really windy and spacious. I cannot imagine living anywhere else and I fear the word en bloc. Thank god for the recession, I no longer have to.

9. I realised 25 things is actually quite a lot to type and this is taking longer than I expected.

10. I love studying. It’s the only thing where the amount of effort you put in yields you the equivalent amount of results. So I have always been pretty straight Aa.

11. I am not very far sighted wrt my life, I usually take on what’s ahead. My life meaning career, hobbies, skills, love etc. That is my constant worry.

12. I want to own a road bike on top of my mountain bike and get a bike stand.

13. I wanted to be a scientist when I was young and I thought of a few inventions. like the bike seat which will be filled with water to ease the sore butt. Then i also explored being a meteorologist and archaeologist.

14. I am impressed with people who are focussed and opinionated. I am also impressed with people who are not conventional. But i am also easily impressed.

15. I have days when I look in the mirror and think I am damn chio. There are also days when i think i look really boring.

16. Throughout my sec 1 and 2 life, I sauntered around school with a knee length skirt cos i thought it was cooler than following the ‘others’ and trimming it to above the knee. Obviously in Sec 3, I thought better.

17. I refused to remove my two side tooth when putting my braces cos I thought I should keep them for a rainy day. You never know when you are going to need more teeth in future. I now have no one but myself to blame for my protruding mouth.

18. I am quite compulsive. I usually eat a lot of one thing before I get so sick of it that I never will want to eat it again. I also must open the packaging of all food purchases for a taste the moment I leave the supermarket. Of course, some pp think it’s just greed. That’s why I remain impressed with Yp who’s able to apportion her snacks.

19. When I was young, I would wear my long pants on my head to pretend I had long hair. Yes. I wanted long hair that badly then. I still dream of growing my hair today.

20. I used to wonder how pp with hair past their waist keep the hair out of the toilet bowl. It grosses me out.

21. I never sit on public toilets even when I am shitting. I am the master of half-squats, even drunk.

22. My recurrent nightmare is of me in a toilet cubicle that is so small, there’s no way I can avoid touching the toilet bowl. Usually I wake up needing to go to pee.

23. My mum is a great cook. I think she should sell her penang laksa.

24. I just realised last year that I do not have a very keen sense of smell. I believe it developed with years of sniffing the old pillows. I also realised that it is actually a blessing in disguise at times.

25. I used to keep a written diary. Velda thinks that’s what keeps me sane. I still have a diary but I no longer write as much. Maybe that’s why I am cranky at times.

I’m climbing already

January 25th, 2009

My auntie printed out those predictions for various horoscopes for the year of the Ox. Apparently, it’s from some female fortune teller who is quite famous.  

So, when I flipped the page for Rooster health, it says climbing staircases is good for me…

IMAGINE! I’m already doing that three times a week…

Countdown

January 23rd, 2009

0.19 years 
2.25 months 
57 days
1368 hours
82, 080 min4,
924, 800 seconds  
A journey which started in 4Q 2004 is about to begin…
It’s crazy when I look back and count..
5 years of my life devoted to stairs climbing, Bukit Timah etc
and I can’t think of anything else I’ld rather be doing.     

Essentials for Everest

January 5th, 2009

writing these before I forget

  1.  ink pen that doesn’t leak and lots of spare pens
  2.  olive veg
  3. soya sauce
  4. loads of mamee
  5. jelly
  6. tang
  7. ask kb for a ropeman for each of us for christmas
  8. superglue
  9. gortex patch

to be continued…

November 27th, 2008

Something exciting

November 25th, 2008

Tomorrow is going to be one exciting day… FINALLY…..  

Stories from the Mekong

November 5th, 2008

Stories from the mekong

 

Every morning thin’s grandfather would row his boat out amongst the lotus fields to collect the dew condensed on the lotus leaves for his morning cup of green tea. Until he met the mekong monster one day and no more was heard of him.

 

The king of sticky rice wine

The king of sticky rice wine could down gallons in a night. Often, he would go to a table and match Everyone at that table. When the people got drunk, he would move to another table and match them again. He did this until no one wanted to drink w him. So he got a litre of sticky rice wine and drank it at home till he died of hunger.

 

The midnight children are borne of the river folk who go to bed at seven. The children of dawn are borne of the railway folk who get woken by e 4am train.

 

The bicycle pixie

The gal could not find any Bike small enough for her tiny frame. So she cycles only half a revolution and back peddles to start e next revolution

 

The siamese twins of mekong

The twins move around on a single Bike. each person responsible for only one side of the Bike.

 

Blindness

October 25th, 2008

Blindness, by the director of City of Gods and Constant Gardener is an extremely somber and intense show.

 

I thought the story was really crappy initially. Everyone gets blinded suddenly and then an epidemic of blindness occurs. But once you get past the —  disease which is really quite introspective in retrospect, the real story unfolds.

 

In the un-named state, as more and more pp get blinded, an epidemic was declared. The blinded people get thrown into a quarantine facility, which is poorly supported and they are left to fend for themselves. An extremely selfish gesture -PP keep the things they’re wary of as far away from us as possible so they don’t have to see them or get reminded of them. In the facility, the blind pee and shit everywhere. The place soon turns unbearably filthy. The authorities are not even concerned with the ergonomics of how the blind can organize themselves and makes no effort to set up any form of assistance within the facility.

 

The organization is left to a doctor and his wife(who insisted on accompanying the husband even though she could see, such true love only to get betrayed later) and with one pair of sight and lots of improvisation, situation got better.

 

That is, until a trouble-maker appears. The trouble-maker questions why everyone needs to listen to the doctor and declares himself the KING. Together with another originally blind man, they terrorise the entire facility.

 

This is when you realize that humans function in all but one way when the society is devoid of any form of rules. First, you need a voice and a weapon. With that, you can be heard and there will be fear. Next, you need to secure the food supplies. (the king declared that all the food supplies are to be controlled by his ward)With the food, you basically have absolute power. So you make pp give up their money and jewellery for food. And naturally when the food runs out, you demand women for food.

 

Typical. We see it played out throughout history under different context but almost always amounting to the same demands.

 

I liken this show to a sort of a modern day Noah’s arc. It’s like a modern day moral awakening. And when pp start to regain their sight, you get a feeling like you’ve just been shown a lesson (like a social studies class) because nothing physical really happened to the pp in the show. They are just like before when their sight is back but yet a lot of them would have changed.

 

But then of course, there are subplots. Dr who is altruistic and outspoken about how things should be in the facility, cheats on his wife and of course, the wife being not blind, sees the entire act of fidelity while the audience i.e. me nearly retch in disgust.

 

There is also love when everyone gets cleaned up and fed after managing to leave the facility n back to the doctor’s house.

 

And though some papers may comment that its ironic to use a visual medium to portray blindness, somehow, the director manages to tell the story without being too visual and yet fully portrays the cruel and demeaning scenes while evoking the emotions and disgust one should feel.

The maroon and yellow one

September 26th, 2008

I called Esther at 830 am this morning
Me: Eh you still sleeping ah?
ES: It’s raining leh
Me: ok I want to ask you what antibiotic your doctor gave you. My sorethroat is damn jia lat and I wanna self medicate
ES: I don’t know. It’s the maroon and yellow one.
Me: Erm… They are not defined by their colour you idiot. Is it amoxycillin? 
ES (croaks sheepishly): sounds familiar, will let you know.