Tuesday, September 23, 2014


Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh..

You, thank you for eating my cupcake.
Thank you for agreeing to be my guinea pig for the next 3 years InsyaAllah.
Thank you for giving me the chance to do that to you.
Thank you for not asking why when I asked you to become the victim of my experiments.

Thank you, I appreciate it when you say you'll look forward to the next experiment. That just made my day. Thank you so much :)


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

The worst place to work

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I came from a  company called Shell Refining Company in Port Dickson, we are in the downstream business. For the past 5 years, downstream business were under scrutiny due to depleting resources and many other constraints. The company tried to promote the motto "A good place to work" in order to keep the morale high. Though we may not enjoy the benefit as much as the people in Upstream, we enjoy the company nonetheless. Bonus were not that high, cost being slashed, forget about the additional benefits that the Upstream colleague enjoyed, we never get to experience that. Travel is restricted, and most of the trainings are in house. But because of the people, we enjoyed our work, we cherished the camaraderie, we helped each other, and somehow despite the lack of resources, we can always count on each other. We went through the thick and thin of the industry when the crude price record an all time high and we were being penalized for the slightest glitch possible.

Now, I am here, an Upstream company, you can say that I am enjoying all the monetary benefits, but honestly if I can come up with a motto, this particular company, SPDC, based on the people's attitude, can be called "The Worst Place to Work". Its a big organization, and as a friend said, these kind of set up leads to inefficiency, very true. One project involved soooo many people, but still the work was far from perfect. Common issue that I found here:

  1. Meetings NEVER start on time. (Well maybe once for the past 8 months that I am here)
  2. People have commitment to stay put in a session until the end. A workshop, may start at 8am, they will come at 9am and by 11am they will be going out again, saying they have something else to attend, and that is the last of seeing them, and yet, they claimed that they are involved in the project.
  3. They have serious commitment issue, no MOM with action party has ever been circulated. Nobody takes responsibility, but many would claim they have done this and that. To me that is b*llsh*t.
  4. They also have compliance issue, few times we get request to do work that is meant to retrofit a certain design that does not meet the standard, helloo.....there is design basis in DEP, use it, you did not even use DEP , now you are asking us to do all sorts of things to cover your ass. There is specific project guideline, with proper Technical Assurance sign off to make sure all are in compliance, but how come it gets to this stage? What is this Technical Assurance doing? His signature is all over, the documents, which clearly does not meet the standards. WTH??
  5. The people will only commit to meetings if it is being held in hotels, then you'll get people that was not involved in the work, attending it full time. WOWW!!
  6. Every meeting that dragged on to lunch time, no lunch would be provided. I was told each employee were given pocket money for lunch, and yet the complaint about the meeting that does not serve lunch, once the topic is opened, they can drag on discussing (complaining) about it for a good 30 minutes.

Seriously, if its not about the money, I don't think anybody (non-Nigerian) would stand working here. I am here for the experience, in terms of work scope, I am learning a lot. But I think I learn more of how to control my anger here. SERIOUSLY.

Life in the RA on the other hand, is a bliss. So that is the main trade off. 
Guess this update comes much earlier than anticipated....huhuhu...next one will definitely be about garden, till then, Wassalam. :)

Belated Hari Raya in Port Harcourt

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh,

As usual, I will try to have a small makan-makan to celebrate friends for Raya. This year, though its now way past Syawal, I still want to make it happened, plus the fact that I have just moved into the house, makes it a double celebration!! :)

The menu is simple, rendang ayam, lontong (with instant nasi himpit that I brought in my container) and various kuih raya. I did made Puding Jagung, but it does not turned out the way I want it. However, there is one kuih that I introduced to the Port Harcourt community, buah melaka, and its a hit!! :)
No pictures of the food though as I was rushing back and forth and I was practically everywhere.

Here are some of the pictures of my guests.

Latha and Theresa
More ladies :)

The guest that preferred the other side of the couch
Andrea, Rafael , Robert

That's it for now, next update maybe on my garden, insyaAllah :)

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Itaú - Mostra tua força Brasil (Clipe Oficial)

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh...

We came back from Brasil on the 7th of July, straight into the fasting month, and the I went back to Malaysia for raya. Hence, I did not really have the chance to sit down and share much about Brasil. Well, let me start with this one. Itau is one of the main sponsor for the Brazil FIFA World Cup 2014. This commercial has been on loop all throughout the TV stations, and we like it very much, to a point p cari kat YouTube and singing along with it.

The tempo is uplifting, I would vote this to be the official world cup theme song, hundreds thousands of times over that ridiculous Pitbull song. :)

I'll update more later, till then wassalam.. :)

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

I'm Home!!

Assalamulaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh...

Alhamdulillah, I am no longer homeless..hehehe.. After almost 8 months staying in the guest house (well, tolak maybe close to two months of accumulated leave travelling all over), I have finally moved in.
This the picture before I moved in.

Some pictures in the course of moving...

These two gentlemen helped me assemble some of the small stuffs, the big ones were put together by the packers.

Since both of them did such a great job, I decided to cook some authentic Malay food for them. :)
Jogo de americano (place mat) comes all the way from Brazil.

Pajeri Nenas

Ayam Goreng ala Nyonya

Landon and Wai Kiong

Me and Landon
I am fully settled, I guess..hehehe.... This Saturday, I am having a belated Hari Raya do for the people that is still remaining in RA. They left when the summer starts, but with the Ebola outbreak, only staffs returned back for work, the families are all not returning. Until when, we don't know. Even the school is not re-opened yet. Tentatively they are looking at mid October to resume the school session, but if there is new outbreak, or more fatalities, it will definitely be delayed.

We'll see. As for us in the RA, chances of getting is quite low as we are not directly exposed. Anyhoo, I'll update more. Till then, wassalam.