Friday, December 23, 2016

How my wedding would be...

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh..

Shaz's wedding was a grand one. Despite her claim of not enough budget and all, the celebration went on for 3 days 3 nights on her side (causing us to be mostly sleep deprived..hehe) and later continued for a reception in SG. I enjoyed most part of KL side, and had I had the chance to attend the SG side, I think I would enjoy it as well. 

However..... that's not how I want my wedding would be. We girls have our dream wedding even though we do not have the other party to play the groom part yet :P. My idea of my wedding has evolved along the years, along with my perception of what's good for me, and I guess pretty much influenced by what Islam wants a wedding to be. So here goes:

My wedding would be in a masjid, it can be either Masjid Wilayah or Masjid Besi Putrajaya. Both Muslim and non-Muslim guests will be invited to the masjid. The guests will have to reach the masjid before maghrib. We (pengantin included ok) would join the congregation for Maghrib prayers, after that, we will have the akad nikah ceremony. That ~1 hour window between Maghrib and Isyak should be ample enough for the event. The non muslim guests would be seated outside with a video live feed of the nikah (if there is any opposition to non Muslim entering the prayer hall). If they are no protest, all guests are welcomed to witness the nikah in the prayer hall. After the nikah, by that time it would be Isyak, all guests, my future husband and myself will also be in the congregation. After solat baru la upacara batal air sembahyang, sarung cincin bagai. That should not take more than 15 minutes. 

I would be ready with wudhuk and had make up done before maghrib. No need for elaborate make up, I just need to be in purity state until we finish Isyak. Should not be that hard insyaAllah. And oh.. I would like to hold 3 stalks of gerber daisy (pink or red colour preffered) as my bouquet. Simple, light but makes a bold statement. Wedding gown..hhmmm...a white abaya, detailing not sure yet, will probably let the expert designer decide. The groom will be fully clad in white satin baju melayu, even if he is not melayu, he's marrying one, so he has to wear it :) hehe.. Sampin songket warna-warni like sampin Sarawak or sampin Indonesia, I can't remember which part, but I love that sampin.  

After which, then we will all adjourn to small reception at the masjid. Masjid Besi Putrajaya is perfect for this setting! During the reception, both my husband and I will then mingle around and say hi to the guests. And that's it. Potentially, I don't expect to get more than 100-150 guests. If more people are willing to attend the masjid wedding, then alhamdulillah, all the better.  

This is not my original idea. This comes from Baba Ali, one of the founder for the muslim marriage site, Half Our Deen. 

Now if we expect to entertain more guests, then maybe we can consider a reception on the following day, noontime. No bersanding whatsoever. Just a small reception, takde berarak bagai. Hantaran will be exchanged during the nikah. Pelamin pun tak payah, but if anybody (makcik2 la normally) insist, then maybe we can have that for photography session, definitely no bersanding. The thing with reception nowadays is, there are so many 'other' elements that comes with it, there's photobooth, music playing, speeches, etc. And its quite hard to control the flow, but we will see how. 

So, that's it for now on how I dream my wedding would be. Am pretty sure if the thoughts keeps coming, more details will be added in..haha. 

Till next time, wassalam. :)

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Pergi Tak Kembali

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh..

My last post talks about my then emotional state of being. I did went for my Nordic adventure. Had loads of fun, but before that had some series of unfortunate events or bad luck (as KBB put it). First it was my worry that something were to happened at home while I'm on holiday, and then there was this incident in the work place that caused me to be hospitalized for 4 days!

I fall on my back on the last day of a site visit to a terminal. Quite fair bit of fiasco, to the point that MEDEVAC were to be activated. I told my travel mates, they assured me that they will help me with my luggage, and it's not like we were in Amazing Race or something :). I was working from home until the day I traveled.

And my series of unfortunate event did not stops there, the day I was supposed to travel, Nov 23rd, Lufthansa's pilot decided to launch a strike. So I had a choice of waiting for a later flight, or change to another flight. Without much thought I booked Turkish Airline ticket direct to Copenhagen to meet up with the rest. The original plan to transit in London went bust because of it. There goes my another pair of cheap Clarks! hehe..If I were to wait for the later Luthansa flight, the whole itinerary will have to be changed as well, so no can do.

So there I go happy-happy joy-joy in Scandi. I will save the travelog later. Our last destination was Stockholm. I have to leave early to make it to Shaz's wedding. I was supposed to meet with my parents at the wedding and head home direct to NG after that wedding. Before I touched down KL, mak informed me ayah is already on wheelchair, definitely could not make it to the wedding. Without further ado, I've tried to delay my return flight back to Nigeria, but all Emirates flights seems to be fully booked on the tentative fly back dates. I've tried both ticketing offices, Stockholm, and Dubai and by the time I touched down KL, I knew for sure that I will not be able to change my flight ticket back to Nigeria.

That very day I touched down, I bought a one way Air France ticket, end destination Port Harcourt. No point for me to return to Lagos and waste another day there. Booked MAS return ticket to AOR and I attended Shaz's wedding with the peace of mind that I am travelling back to SP on Monday, the day after the reception.

I flew back with 1.30 PM flight to AOR, adik fetch me and rather than heading straight to the hospital (ayah was admitted on Friday night, mak spare me the news, as I was busy with Shaz's wedding), I went back to take a bath and quick nap as I was having massive headache from few days lack of sleep. The plan is to go to the hospital at 6PM.

Around 5.50 PM, another sister texted the news, ayah no longer there. He has peacefully passed away. Innalillahi wa inna ilahi rojiun.. This was on the 12th Dec 2016, Monday. We head straight to the hospital, and when we got there, ayah's remains was still in the ward, yet to be transferred to the mortuary. I stayed with mak, clearing all the hospital documentations etc and was with mak in van jenazah heading back home. Some people may beat themselves up for not being able to see their parents before they finally departed, but for me, I will not do that. Terkilan maybe, but I am even more thankful that I was there back in SP when all these happened. Imagine if I were in Nigeria, or on a cruise somewhere, how much help can I render to the family. I am really thankful of Allah's planning, the timing especially. Syukur sangat-sangat, dah besar rahmat I was there to help mak uruskan mana yang patut, and not be scrambling for flight tickets and what not.

Meanwhile my neighbours quickly helped to set the house ready for us. By the time we got back, all has been prepared for us. Jenazah was laid to rest the following day around 12 PM. The whole process were smooth alhamdulillah. My sister witnessed the ghusl at the masjid, and she mentioned that the kariah took time to properly complete it, they were not rushing, which is good for the jenazah I guess. Should be handled with care. So there it is, ayah has left us, went to see his Creator. Until a few days after his demise, there a few people came over to the house to look for Pak Long Usop, as he was fondly known off by the kampung folks. Some of them did not get the news, and ayah is the kind of person that can talk to anybody he met at coffee shop. Ayah's phone was not working and even if it was, these people are the random people that he met all around. You know how kampung folks are, some has mobile, some doesn't. But I guess by now, most of ayah's acquaintances already knew about his passing.

Till next time, wassalam...

Friday, November 11, 2016

How is my heart today?

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh..

Read this article today.

Its a beautiful piece of writing, and it surprises me to know that the writer is a 'he'. Rarely do I get touched by a man's writing. There are certain nuance that I always associated with male writers, people like Khaled Hosseini wrote beautiful and touching pieces but not quite like this. Maybe because what was written is personal to the writer, it has a little bit more soul into it. Ok, enough about the writer, back to the question.

How is my heart today?

Better. At least better than the last few days. It was pretty emotional throughout the week. Hormones raging if you knew what I mean. I still feel anxious. Ayah is not well and has been in hospital for at least 2 weeks. He's getting better but with his condition there is no way he can fully recover. At one point it was almost a life and death situation. While I rushed back in Sept because of this, my sisters asked me to stay put for now. Not to rush into things but I'm ready to go home anytime.

I'm not sad because ayah fell sick, we've seen it coming, and if its his time to go, we are all ready for it. Maybe its for the better. But I don't quite understand why I am feeling more melancholic these few days.

I'm due to set for another adventure on 23rd, of to the Nordic region, and followed by a short trip back home for Shaz wedding. With whats happening back home, I've started to second guess my plan. If I go and 'enjoy' my trip, what if something happen back home? But I've made all the arrangements, paid what needs to be paid, I'm all set. Its not so much about the money, but more of the opportunity to go and see things.

Voiced out my dilemma to KBB, the feedback that I get comes in a form of questions, what if ayah's condition continues for months and months to come? Would I stop doing things that I want to do just because I am so called on standby? Basically do I want to put my life on hold? Its a heavy question. But it did crossed my mind even before I was asked. Life has to go on. My life has to go on.

For now, I have to play by ear. We'll see what will happen. Ayah's condition can go from OK to worse overnight. Anywhere I will be, it will be equally challenging to organize a trip back home, that was KBB's argument. And I have to admit, that is the case.

So we'll see. Till next time.
Beds of roses outside NASA Centre in Houston. January 2016. 


Monday, October 31, 2016


Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh..

Have you ever made some one that is so kelam-kabut, so all over the place and at the same the same time very aggressive? Have you? I have, every single day. Its my dear boss. Sakit hati betui. Kita dah explain, but since he refuse to hear and understand, he said that he didn't have any knowledge of it. Depan2 kita dia p cakap lagu tu. Mendidih la.. last2 I just ignore the discussion and put on my head phone. He continued discussing with my colleagues on other topics.

Luckily I did not raised my voice, I just make faces, when I'm crossed, that part is obvious no matter how much I want to control my anger. Muka memang tak boleh blah.

After things has cooled down, I went over to talk to my boss about other things. My emotion has been normalized and his edginess seems to have subsided. Turns out there are few things on his plate that of Urgent and Important that seems to be not quite together this morning. On top of that we are having some restructuring exercise right now, and he is bogged down by resume screenings, interview, the whole enchilada, even for other departments. So I can imagine the level of stress that he is having right now.

Ok, I've calmed down and he even apologize for being a bit jumpy this morning. So its all good now. Haih.. drama pagi-pagi Senin ni.

Ikutkan hati, I wanted to leave this corporate world. I really do. But fikir-fikir balik, my family depends on me and I am still afraid to venture on my own. Kurang keyakinan (or is it malas?) hehe.. Boleh kot, if push comes to shove, I think I can survive outside O&G industry. Cumanya la ni dah selesa earning and spending :D

Sapa nak bagi ai fixed income every month? Kalau meniaga sendiri mahu la tiap2 bulan dok pening buat cash flow...So seriously kena kick myself in the back once in a while supaya bersyukur dengan kerja ni. I am not at a point I hate my job. No, I still very much like my job, and looking forward to more adventures, cumanya ya lah..kadang-kadang down jugak.

Oklah, very much looking forward to my trip 23 days from now!!! Now that justify the job. Dingo (my neighbour, one of the kuyas) keep on asking me, "Remind me again, why do we have to work?" and my standard answer would be "So that we can go on holidays". That should be it!

Till next time, wassalam.

p/s: I've not watched the last week's Suri Hati Mr Pilot. Nak kumpul tengok terus 8 episod this weekend, dah nak habis kan.. my way of delayed gratification (just learned this phrase ..hehehe) . Apa kena mengena pon tak tau :P

Monday, October 24, 2016

Dalam Hati Ada Taman

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh...

Tajuukk... tak agak-agak..haha. Well its nothing really. Just that this past weekend somehow I was in 'dalam hati ada taman' mode. I seriously don't know what triggers it, but I've read 2 novels, Hikayat Si Pematah Hati and Isteri Untuk Disewa within the few days and on top of that I watched until episode 8 of Suri Hati Mr Pilot online. Haaa ko.. mana tak berbunga-bunga. Baca novel cintan-cintun, tengok pulak drama gitu, dah tumbuh la taman dalam hati.. haha..

Well...its just one of those days. I have this habit, I have all kinds of feeling bottled up inside me, with no way to let it out (how can I?) nak sembang takda sapa, so whatever feeling that I feels will just have to sit deep down inside, waiting for any trigger for it to be released. And all these lovey dovey feeling got unleashed over the past weekend.. :) La ni mula la tak boleh move on. Dok ternampak-Nampak Fattah Amin senyum, cara dia pandang Neelofa, pastu dok senyum sorang2. And when I watched this, I really don't picture myself in that, or FA senyum to me or something like that, no. I just like seeing both of them. I've never really watch Neelofa before, and though she might not be among the best actress, but she's not bad la.

My definition of not bad is surpass the basic requirement, applies to everything. So if I say 'not bad', its actually a compliment, if you want me to give a scale, maybe 6-7 out of 10. Some people might feels disheartened hearing a 'not bad' feedback, but if you get that from me, that is good enough.

Ok, now still tak boleh move on. Sat2 senyum.. parah.. Kerja wei.. baru hari Isnin. Better wait till weekend to watch the whole week's episode. Sonang kojo eh.. takyah tunggu tetiap hari.

Signing off now, really need to get back to work. Tata peeps (whoever you are, which I seriously doubt ada orang dok mai baca lagi blog ni..hahaha)

Till next post, wassalam.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

3 hari yang sangap...

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh..

Its day 3 now. My hard disk (work laptop) were showing signs of crashing on Tuesday and fearing for the worst I copied all the documents to my external hard disk, painfully.. One click took the processor 5 mins to respond. I managed to copy all the documents. Hopefully it is safe and sound for now.

Whole day Tuesday was gone, doing the back up, yesterday I couldn't start the laptop at all and sent it right away for the IT people to rectify it. I did told them on Tuesday, but nobody took any action. They said the HP people was scheduled to come here on Tuesday to repair / service, and from what I see, already there are another 2 laptops that is waiting for repair. The HP people did not showed up on Tuesday, and yesterday was no show as well. The reason? it was raining.. I was like.. WTH? Ni bukan pedalaman ceruk mana nak kena naik sampai harung sungai arus deras time hujan. I don't know what to say anymore. There were no replacement laptop or PC, which makes me furious even more.

Today I demanded a replacement laptop but they keep on promising that HP people will come and fix my laptop today. I can't do anything much for now.

So for the past 3 days, I've been doing literally nothing. Untuk mengubat hati yang lara (chewah...hehe) jom layan few pictures from our US trip.
Breakfast at Houston Airport, LA bound. Met Sakina at Houston and then onwards from LA RV with the other 2.

First destination Hello Disneyland!!
Lady no 1: Wanah

Lady no 2: Mawar

Lady no 3: Sakina

Friday, October 14, 2016

Whats Up?


Sebulan satu post je...? Hahaha..sedih weh.. dulu-dulu (like 4-5 years back) I blogged almost everyday, and so does my other blogger friends. Hidup rasa warna-warni waktu tu sebab hari-hari ada update macam-macam cerita. Sekarang...? sendu.. haha.. The same gang yang gigih ber-blog sama2 dulu dah mostly tenggelam. I missed Aida with her gorgeous pictures, Dieya with her travel adventures, Kak Yong with her daily stories about dak Ammar, Alisya, Kak Tek dengan cerita anak-anak dan Abe Gapo.

Miss all of them. I guess its life. We moved on and other priorities supersedes blogging, and in my case, malas nak mams...hehe.

For the past month, many things has happened. One of which, I have to travel back due to some family emergency. One week in and out. Super efficient this time, tak buang masa kat London dah..hahaha... (boleh pon straight to the point balik rumah, saja ja nak melencong selalunya tu..) :P

And I will be back to KL again in December for 3 days. (Gilo ko?) hehehe.. when your best friend is getting married, you'll get all kinds of crazy! Shaz will be tying the knot, insyaAllah in December. We discussed about that during our London-Scotland trip and we aimed Feb 2017 initially so that I can take longer leave to attend the wedding. (Dia punya wedding dah apa hal kena ikut kalendar ko? hehehe..)But somehow dah jodoh kan, dipercepatkan ke December.

So happened I already plan a trip in November to home country of KBB, but of course not with him la, with my primary schoolmate and 2 of her friends. Trip is scheduled to end at the same date of Shaz's wedding. So I have to cut short my trip, fly balik Malaysia and attend the wedding, and crazy as it seems, I actually like it! (Suka kan buat kerja gila camni...hehehe)

I've arranged for henna session for us girls. I super love inai, so what is a wedding without inai? Gigih tau cari henna artist yang available at that time. Almaklumlah, peak season, December, semua tengah musim kahwin, and these people normally are booked way in advance. Alhamdulillah dapat jugak satu. Just hope that the majlis will go smoothly.

I am trying to re-ignite my blogging mojo. Doakanlah..haha.

Till next time, wassalam..

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Stupid experiment, rasakan! :)

Assalamualaikum w.b.t.

I did something stupid, it started off last year and the impact is felt until yesterday. So here goes.

Every calendar year, I have been allocated a certain amount of travel budget. In 2014, I miraculously managed to utilize the budget and walk away a happy camper. In 2015, by the time I was done with the US trip planning, I realized I still have some budget left, but I was running out of time to use it. I wanted to let the budget slide when suddenly the topic came up when I talked to Anton.

So based on his advise, I find the cheapest ticket that suit my remaining budget (that is not under any kind of promotion), buy the ticket with tentative travel date in 2015. Once all claim is done, I can change the travel date to my actual travel date in 2016 (changes cost bear by yours truly), which is fine, its only a fraction compared to the budget that I would consider to be under utilized.

Long story short, I bought a round trip ticket to London from Lagos with Royal Air Maroc. Its a 4 hours flight to Casablanca and few hours transit before another 3 hours flight to London. Date is adjustable. So throughout 2016, I've been trying to squeeze in my travel so that I can utilize that ticket. Some failed (unconfirmed) arrangements happened one after another, and I was pressed to use the ticket.

Suddenly there was a light bulb moment. Why not I travel back to Malaysia from London, using MAS :) taadaa.... I've been wanting to fly with MAS (long haul) since MH370 happened. just to show my solidarity with our national airline.. So that was what I did, for Raya Haji. This was how the travel looks.

Date               Day           From              ETD     To                  ETA           Flight         Airline
8 Sept-16       Thursday   Lagos             0630     Casablanca    1100          AT0554      Royal Air Maroc
8 Sept-16       Thursday   Casablanca     1330     London         1650          AT0800      Royal Air Maroc
10 Sept-16     Saturday    London          1155      KL                0745 (+1)  MH003      Malaysia Airlines
11 Sept-16     Saturday    KL                 0850      Alor Setar     0850          MH1204    Malaysia Airlines
15 Sept-16     Thursday   Alor Setar      2125      KL                2230         MH1253    Malaysia Airlines
17 Sept-16     Saturday    KL                 2315      London         0555 (+1)  MH002     Malaysia Airlines
18 Sept-16     Sunday      London          1810      Casablanca    2135         AT801        Royal Air Maroc
19 Sept-16     Monday     Casablanca    0100      Lagos            0530         AT0555      Royal Air Maroc

Tengok pon pening kan...hahaha.. and I have to explain one by one each time people here asked, how do you travel this time? (We asked the questions a lot here.. somehow flight plan is not a private information among the expats..haha)

I didn't realize it was a stupid plan, until I arrived back yesterday. Imagine I started my journey back in Malaysia on Saturday, Ija picked me up at Putrajaya 8PM

17th Sept (GMT +8)
2000H : Ija picks up
2100H: Reached KLIA, check in
2315H: ETD, but the flight was delayed due to technical issues

18th Sept (GMT+8)
0200H: Departed to London
1500H: Arrived in London

18th Sept (GMT+1)
1000H: Arrived in London
1810H: ETD to Casablanca, Alhamdulillah departed on time
2135H: Arrived in Casablanca

19th Sept (GMT+1)
0100H: Departed to Lagos, on time
0530H: Arrived in Lagos.

The thing that I failed to realized is, Lagos is not my final destination...hahaha.. bodoh kan..

I booked a domestic flight back to PHC at 0700H same day, but after discussing with my colleague, in anticipation of delays etc, I switched my booking to the afternoon flight.

1515H: ETD to PHC (we were delayed due to bad weather)
1700H: Finally departed to PHC
1800H: Arrived in PHC waited for the bus to RA
1830H: Arrived in RA

1830H 19th Sept GMT+1 is equals to 0130H 20th Sept GMT+8

So in total, I spent 53 hours on the road for the leg back from KL to PHC... hahaha.. amek kau, nak sangat pengalaman kan...

Serik weh.. biaq la bayaq mahai sikit. Tak nak dah travel camni. The moment I got home, took shower, had dinner, solat maghrib and tak dan isyak I was totally knocked out! Mangkit midnight for Isyak.

Pengalaman kan... hahaha..

Till next time. This year nampaknya akan ke London lagi...another pertimbangan kurang bijak dari saya ya tuan2 dan puan2..

p/s; KBB p tanya how many days I was away. Bila jawab 1 and half week, dia macam tak caya, tanya dia balik, rasa macam lama ka...? dia cakap ha'ah.. Aik.. sibuk pulak orang cuti lama..hehehe. (menurut firasat hamba, tak la lama mana pon..) :)

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Under the weather

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh..

Last weekend I was on Bonga to deliver a training. Got there on Friday afternoon after an episode of commotion with the immigration sitting at Caverton terminal in Lagos. Long story short, my trip was delayed by few hours and I got a detour to two immigration offices..hehe.

One was located in MMIA (the international airport) and another was at this private hangar for all those filthy rich Nigerians (duit mana depa dapat tak tau) to keep their private plane. This is one of them.

On second day on Bonga, guess what? My P comes. I had the hint before the trip, but I wasn't sure as sometimes the signs can come and I only got my period one week later. Regardless I managed to pack some ponstan and there was already some sanitary pads in my bag, but its always not enough.

I consumed ponstan on regular basis when I was on Bonga, reason being is I was having training session, there is no way I can appear even remotely unwell. Uh uh..not gonna happen. On that 2 days I consumed 10 tablets of Mfenamic Acid 250 gm. I know its not good, but its not every month, and I really need to fight all the pain.
On the last day on Bonga, managed to capture few pictures outside the E deck. Wish I can venture more but I was too tired for the whole weekend, having to speak for almost 8 hours a day.

Thats the escape boat, should we need to evacuate the vessel and run (or swim?? hehe)!!
Finally got home on Tuesday afternoon after of course some more delays...(what's new?). Yesterday resumed coming back to office, only to feel something is not right. The aircond seems much colder and already I was not feeling good. Despite layering up with thermal clothing on the inside, I succumbed to cold. Took half day yesterday. Went back and made some 'mat saleh' style chicken soup. The taste is not bad, consumed 2 oranges to boost my immune system and went to sleep with a bad headache. I was holding my head till I fall asleep.

This morning, I am even more prepared. 1 tumbler of Ahmad's Lemon and Lime tea, and these supplies :)
Dah layout siap-siap atas meja. And that is my last Vicks, updating my shopping list balik raya haji nanti. That panadol is courtesy of Tawheed, my colleague. I ran out of mine. Again, have to update my medicine list..

So hopefully I can survive another day in this cold office. There are only 5 of us in this space that can easily hold 12 people. Not much heat generation, and we rely on centralized air conditioning unit, so you do the math.

Itu ja nak update kali ni. Nak share somewhere, but since my IG is now a more public space with I don't know how many strangers now followed me, malas la pulak nak share benda2 camni kat IG. And another thing is nobody reads blog anymore..haha. So it is now has became my private sanctuary. :)

Till next time, wassalam. 

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

A cast member is walking out..

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh..

Something unexpected happened today. Somebody decided to pull out from and agreement that we have. Its a social agreement nonetheless. I should not be so offended, but somehow I am. Guess you can't control your heart eh? 

I seriously didn't see it coming. So this is how getting rejected feels. It sucks. I have no choice but to move on. I should be thankful that this person agrees to enter the agreement in the first place. So now I need to find a new person to replace that void. Its OK, have faith that there is other people that is willing to help me with it. Allah is with me. Have faith!  

Till next time, wassalam. 

p/s: 29th Syawal, my last day of puasa 6! yeay! alhamdulillah... :)

Monday, August 1, 2016

Post Raya Depression

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh..
Amboi tajuk..tak agak2..haha. My Solat Apps says its 27th Syawal, and I've been back to work since 10th Syawal, so I came back at the time all the open houses are about to start. My FB timelines are filled with people either hosting or attending open houses.
I hosted one (can't really say its an open house) the previous weekend. Cooked mee rebus, rendang daging with pulut kuning, roti jala with kari ayam, and for dessert I made chocolate brownie and kek suji CMG. Nak kata puas makan, macam kenyang jugak la, siap ada leftovers which took me almost 2 weeks to finish, but still I craved for many other foods as well.
I just realized, on each of my trip back, I've never really go for 'jalan-jalan cari makan'. Normal catch up with friends and family pakai main tangkap muat nak makan kat mana. Waaaa... As of now, my cravings include:
  1. Pasemboq
  2. Durian - not so much of cravings per se, but more of teringin dok tengok orang post gambaq durian dalam FB..huhuhu
I have another 3 days to go for puasa 6. I will finish on 29th Syawal, insyaAllah. Am seriously thinking of making pasemboq as a mark for my 'raya' celebration..hehe.
Malam ni kena rendam kacang hijau for the tauge, and maybe by Sunday I will be able to enjoy my pasemboq, that is, if I didn't change my mind in the course of this week. Haha.
On another note, am sponsoring the fun run this Thursday. The menu would be:
Appetiser :
Cucoq udang with kuah kacang
Mains :
  1. Nasi putih
  2. Sambal kering - kentang, tauhu, fucuk, suun (made the tauhu last weekend, now sitting nicely in the fridge, and I just realized, I have tooo many fucuk and suun, so better start consuming now.
  3. Kerabu daun selom - I cannot NOT have this :)
  4. Snake gourd kootu - Snake gourd is a vegetable that is of peria, petola family, originally came from India, I used to have it in my garden but somehow it refuses to grow anymore. Will share the recipe if its a success.
  5. Ayam goreng berempah.
Kuih sagu
That should be it. It looks a lot, but its not actually. The previous fun run I had a theme going on, but this time I didn't really have a proper plan, so the theme is 'wing it'! haha. We'll see.
Until next time. Wassalam.  

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Too Much

Today I cried. After quite some time. Today I cried. The pain felt a bit more than usual. Or is it just me being extra sensitive this time of the month. It's horrible. Already had 6 tabs of pain killer, 2 cans of coke, and I don't have the energy to go and make a nice warm tea for me.

I'm lying on my side. Crying my hearts out. The pain felt more just because I can't tell anybody. Last month I was with the girls this time around, it was painful, no doubt but I wasn't hurting, because I had someone to talk to.

Ya Allah, please send someone I can share the feeling of this pain. Just by talking about it ease the pain. Please Ya Allah...

Monday, May 23, 2016

I don't allow you to drive.

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh...

Di saat orang kat tanah malaya sibuk dengan pick up line yang sweet-muit, ayat atas tu lah yang buat aku makin terikat.

So here's the story. Few friends and yours truly are planning to chase the northern lights come November this year. The lead proposed we follow trip kengkawan's itinerary, which is to go to Denmark, Norway and Sweden. We copied all their itineraries and tried to adjust here and there to suit our planning.

Taking advantage of Kim, I volunteered to run the plan with him to my friends, just to see from a local point of view if that is a good plan.

These kind of things to me is not something that you can just talk in passing. Since we have a proper itinerary, I asked for his spare time, to meet and properly discuss it. So yesterday we did.

Our plan for now is to drive in most part of the journey, exactly as what Trip Kengkawan did. Kim, on the other hand, upon knowing the tentative timing, strongly advised not to do so. At first he was just expressing his opinion, and as we discussed further, he keep on stressing to not drive in any part of Norway at that time due to the wet and snowy road condition and none of us girls have any experience driving in snow.

As if stressing his opinion not enough, he did finally make a point by saying: "In fact, I don't allow you to drive." and he looked serious about it. He did mentioned he was worried about me.

I laughed and replied, "Ok, ok, point noted."

The entire time I did not really tried to justify why and how we can proceed with driving, I was just accepting his feedback. But maybe he was so worried that we will still choose to drive, and therefore he emphasize his objection by saying so. Risau betul pakcik tu :)

If its other feminist, they would probably felt patronized by his statement, but me hearing it at that time, aduhhh... cair weh. Pick line tak pick up line.. jatuh makin dalam dah aku ni.. parah betul..haha.

Moments like this with him are the things I held on tight in my mind. Kept locked and compartmentalized in a permanent section of my memory as I know there is slim to none chances for this to happen again. Past few months we were a bit distant. Somehow we grew apart, and my Kim's time yesterday was enough for me. I'll look for other opportunity maybe next 3-4 months. I'm good for now.

Kim is sweet like that. Sweet without actually being a sweet talker, he's very direct, tak ada ayat bunga2, falsampah semua. Everything he said is blunt, and I don't think he's faking it. Tu yang buat hati makin terikat. I am easily turned off by sweet talker, I can talk to them but will never trust them. There is a certain negative pre-conceived notion about them that prevents me to do so.

Ok, enough for now. Noting it here for my memory, the sweet one this time. Till next time, wassalam.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Email...oh email...

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh...

How do you manage your email? Work emails to be specific.. For me, I glance through the email, especially if its from my boss and my team mate. If I need to look into the detail, I'll come back to it when time permits. But the important thing is, I will make sure that I know who sent what email and on what issue. Apparently almost all colleague of mine and my dear boss don't do that. Only the trainee bother to read my email.

We have an event yesterday, a global event and I was the focal point for our team. I have summed up where and when each of us needs to be, but they just don't bother to read the email. Sama ja boss ka colleague ka.. And knowing that I did made the effort to tell them personally via SMS, verbal and even go to the length of printing out my email and asking my colleague to pass to the boss as I was rushing out and didn't managed to talk to Mr Boss yet.

Somehow this colleague, he was not properly listening to my request, gave the printed schedule to another colleague which already know where she is going. Lo and behold, when I came back to the office, the boss pester me with the question, 'So where do we go, do we know yet?' And my boss is the typical pushy Chinese boss that keeps asking multiple questions before you can even answer the first one. Frustrating ok! Bad enough he didn't read my email, and now he did not get that bloody piece of paper that I printed out.

This is just one example, and its on social event. There has been way too many occasions, my work email was not read properly, things that I have completed, he keeps coming back to me. I know they may have like 200+ unread email, but for God sake, don't do this. We are a team, I don't how many times I've said, read my email, its all in it. Up to a point I drag him to see my screen, go to my sent item and showed him this is what I sent you. The details are here.

Somehow I wonder how much hijab can Allah's put to some people that can they be so blinded? Geram betui...

OK, enough rantings for today. Till next time.


Saturday, April 9, 2016

P-290, my weekends for the next 2 months

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh...

Seems like all my travelogue could not go pass Day-1 eh? Hahaha.. malas ya amat! So now, in order to get myself back in the blogging mojo again, let me share one thing that is for sure I will need to write, at least once a week.

I have been enrolled to attend this course P-290 HSSE and SP in Projects in June this year. Its part of my IDP (Individual Development Plan). Brace yourself, you'll be seeing more of these Shell abbreviation in the future..hehe..So here we go... This course is to be done via 2 phases, first one is the course pre-work, that we need to submit weekly assignment and upon completing that we will be attending the F2F (face to face) course in June. There is a learning portal that we log on to and obtain all the course and reference materials. The assignment has to be submitted no later that 11AM Sunday every week. Failing which, I will not be allowed to attend the F2F. We don't want that, do we? :)

So from this week onwards, I will share with you my assignments. The reason that I am sharing here is:
1. I need to get back my writing mojo, so this will be a good warm up (I hope!)
2. I am almost 100-200% sure that none of you are working in the same company and would be attending the similar course in the near or far into the future. Therefore, there will be no issue of copy and paste of my assignment.

Question 1:  Consider what you know about leadership in general and HSSE and SP leadership in particular. What are the key attributes of good HSSE and SP leadership?

A good HSSE and SP leaders has few key attributes that can be measured against them. A leader must be authentic. He/she must be able to communicate his/her own vision of how Goal Zero can be realized and what is expected from the working team ensure that the vision can be achieved. The leader must also shows his commitment by either leading or participating in core HSSE activities such as team HSE meetings, management reviews and incidents investigation. 
Another key attributes of a good HSSE and SP leader is to be mindful of the HSSE risk associated with the business and how they are managed. He/she must also be able to obtain assurance that controls to manage the risk are effective and a leader must take appropriate corrective action if he/she thinks the condition is vice versa.
A good HSSE and SP leader should be able to collaborate with different parties at different level in his/her organization. It’s important for the leaders to be able to engage, influence and align join venture and contracting partners on the importance of HSSE leadership. The leader should work with the key stakeholders to identify areas to improve HSSE performance and agree on the improvement action plan. 
Last but not least, a good HSSE and SP leader should be able to ensure that his/her organization is well motivated. This can be achieved by the leaders themselves coaching and developing the personnel in effective HSSE management. Leaders should ensure that individuals are hold accountable for their HSSE behaviours and performance and corrective actions such as consequence management should be applied consistently for any non-compliance. Leaders should also make clear that performance reward include HSSE behaviours as one of the criteria, and the leaders should provide constructive feedback to personnel/contractors in that regards.  

Question 2: Early in a project, it is necessary to manage the HSSE and SP risks for the front-end phases and at the same time, take in the big picture view to ensure that the right strategies and agreements are in place for HSSE and SP risks. Leaders have to make sure the project identifies all of the risks, technical and non-technical, and strikes the right balance between them. What key actions should leaders take to make sure that HSSE and SP are properly integrated into the project design with the right balance?

In order to ensure that HSSE and SP are properly integrated into the project design with the right balance, the proper HEMP process should be applied. It prescribed that hazards or risks should be identified right from the first project phase in order to assign the right controls and mitigations. This exercise requires a multi discipline participation. Leaders should ensure that various discipline are given opportunity to play their part since the beginning of the project. During the risk identification, a risk brain storm tool called TECOP (Technical, Economic, Commercial, Organizational, and Political ) could be used to confirm the both technical and non-technical risks are identified. Once the risks are identified at early stage of the project,it will then be used to develop the HSSE and SP plan. The plan will be able to capture all necessary works that needs to be conducted throughout the life-cycle of the project and it will provide input to a seamless integration with all other project elements such as cost and schedule. 

Question 3: During the construction phase of a project, the leaders have a significant impact on the safety culture of the site. Describe some key actions a leader should take to establish a strong safety culture?

First and foremost a leader should understand what are the current safety culture on site. It can varies from pathological to as high as generative. Having understanding of the culture, leaders would then understand the gaps from what he expects the culture that he/she expected and formulate an action plan to close the gaps. Part of the action required to close the gap is to provide appropriate training to the workforce.
A leader should also ensure that the project premise capture safety as part of the deliverables throughout the project life cycle. A clear target setting by the leader would help the organization to achieve a good safety performance. Based on the premise, a more detailed safety program can be planned and executed to help create a proactive safety culture during construction phase. Workers should be engaged on what they are expected to achieve with regards to safety. The focus of project should emphasis the same importance of executing the project successfully and safely. 
Another aspects that a leader should focus in is the welfare of the workforce in the construction phase. For example, workers are required to use the correct PPE during work activities, hence its the responsibilities of the leader to ensure that there is enough resources that supplies correct PPE for the workforce. Other general well-being of the workers should be considered as well such as health. 
Once a good safety program is being implemented, the leader should make sure that the execution are being monitored and also make provision to recognize the good safety performance within the work crew. This would further motivate others to apply good safety culture on site. It is highly recommended for a leader to provide constructive feedback to the team. The same applies for non-compliance whereby when a wrong safety behaviours were observed, there should be a clear consequence management to be taken. Actions to deal with non-conformance should not be just on the surface. In order to inculcate a good safety culture, the real cause of the condition to happen (might be a person or a process) has to be managed as well.

Don't be fooled into thinking that I came up with the answers myself, its all in the course materials. Though it may seem like a copy paste exercise, I have to admit its not that straight forward. I have to present the answers the way the questions asked for, which is not that straightforward in the course materials either. The truth is, I have the materials since last year, tried reading it few times, but nothing sticks. Only when I started to do this exercise, I began to appreciate the materials and able to relate a bit more. Guess that's the aim of the exercise anyway. 

Its been a while since I read for the intention of answering questions (read: study). Hakak dah tua dik...hehehe. Respect those that can continue formal education till old age. 

Till next time, wassalam.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Day 1 - 18th February 2016

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh...

Day-1 started when we were picked up from the hotel at 8AM. We stayed at Sal Salinero Hotel at Moshi Town. The town is some 45 minutes away from Kilimanjaro Airport.

Our things are packed in 2 bags, 1 duffel bag that contains the whole that we will need throughout the climb, sleeping bag, clothes, socks, junk foods/ snacks, summit clothing and many others, max weight should not be more than 15 kg. We were given packing list right after we registered and I bought most of my items in US. Another bag is our day pack (back pack). This one should not exceed 5kg. It should contain things that we need during the day, such as water bottles, snacks, toilet papers (or wet wipes) and some other things.

Note: Include the picture that I laid out they whole things, prior to packing!

Danie fixing Sophie's water tube

We stopped by the warehouse as Robert and myself needs to rent the duffle bag and we did not advise the company that we hired earlier.

The collection of things that are up for rent is humongous! You can almost come sehelai sepinggang but just be ready to wear 'bundled' stuffs. Hehe.

After that the bus took us straight to Machame gate. This one of the few entrances to Kilimanjaro. At the gate, our things are being weigh. The porters and guides are all busy now loading and unloading our stuffs. Back in the old days, a porter can carry any amount of load, but due to health and safety reason, the park regulates that max load for a porter is 20 kg. So on top of our 15 kg duffel bag, the porter still needs to carry their own things.

Machame Gate

How far are we from the peak?
We finally started walking at 11AM, after all weigh in and registration is done. We have been told to take it slow, the guides and porters will keep reminding us to 'Pole-pole' which means, slow-slow. The estimated walking time for the first day is 7 hours to reach Machame Gate (10.7km).
Maybe the first hour of the walk into rain forest. 

It rained a little bit along the way. At around 1PM we stopped for lunch. I can't really ate anything solid. So I just finished the fruit juice from the lunch box.

Some moss, don't ask me the scientific name, I wouldn't know..hehehe..

Higher up the elevation
I got to the camp around 1630H. We made it within the expected timing which is good. First day was quite rough for me as I was having too many things in my back pack. I had all the 3L of water, which I only drank 0.5L of it. When I did Stong-Ayam back in 2001, I discovered that I could not drink a lot of water during the hike, I loose my breath rapidly. Found it the hard way. So for this climb, I didn't really drink much during the walk, but I make up once we get to the camp.
The middle one is the tent I shared with Sophie

Me, Sophie, Richard, Jac

Nelson (chief guide), Robert, Andy, Dingo, Arash
The chief guide, Nelson had a daily meeting with all of us, all climbers are monitored for O2 content (signs of dehydration) , max heart rate, and some other general health conditions. Due to the high altitude, we were also required to take Diamox, to prevent any altitude sickness. Even if you take the pills, there is no guarantee that you'll not get the sickness, but hey, its better than nothing.

The funny part is, we consulted the doctor in Shell IA, and he prescribed us 250mg tablet, take 2 tablets, twice a day. But when we consulted Nelson, the recommended dosage is 125mg twice a day which is actually consistent with Travel Doctor's advice. I took 250 mg tablet twice a day, and I do get the overdose symptom, which is tingling feeling (sort of numb, but not quite) on the figers. Luckily Nelson mentioned about it, else, I would have been really overdosed!

We went to sleep quite early, 8 PM~ish, but I could not really sleep. I always have issues with cold weather. I have a good sleeping bag, rated until -4 degC, but somehow my feet was cold. I tried putting on heating pad and sock, it didn't work. So ended up was awake every few hours due to the cold.

Before I end the post, here is how our toilet looks like. It took a little bit of skills to operate it, but I was fine with it. Till next post. 


Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Kilimanjaro Trip: How it Happened...

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh...

I've yet to pen down my US journey, and then I'm off to another destination :) This one more challenging than any other journey that I've been through, physically and mentally as well.

Flashback few months back, towards end of year, there were loads of parties that was thrown by the expat communities in RA. One birthdays after another. During one of those, I overheard Sophie talking to Richard about their plan to hike Kilimanjaro. Somehow I was not my usual self, I asked to join. Haha.. I never really had a proper conversations with any of them, hence, by right I would not be inclined to jump in any kind of conversation with them. Best case, I would just listened by the side and when nobody realized, I will disappear into thin air..haha. :D But somehow the topic is way too interesting to be passed. I've been thinking about hiking Kili for quite sometime. Pretty sure I mentioned it to Kim sometime back, but he was not into it (though he is now somewhere is South America, hiking the Atacama dessert, Andes mountains).

Back to the hike, upon expressing my interest, Sophie sent me all the required information, dates were being discussed and I did told them, that my plan is conditional. If and only if my boss WK agrees to let me take leave. The plan is to go in Feb 2016. I will be away from final week December until first week Jan. And for me to apply another leave in the span of less than two months, may invite dissatisfaction from my boss point of view. :P Somehow luck is on my side, WK agrees to me taking leave again..hehehe. I clearly mentioned to him about all my leave plans, the short time span in between and also the fact that he will also be away for CNY in Feb. He said OK, he must have been in a very good mood..hehe.

So the rest as they say, is history :)

I will be jumping back and forth (and maybe backdate the entry as well) just so that I can properly capture the chronological sequence of our adventure. We'll see..hehehe.. I may not backdate my post, now that I have come to think of it..hehe.
Machame Gate - where we started the walk

How far to the top?

Point no 4 interests us very much, coming from Nigeria..hehehe
Here are some sneak peaks. Will try hard to write more for the day to day adventure. I gave up doing that in IG as I think it would be too much. Blog is a much more proper avenue for lengthy sharing like this :)

Till next time, wassalam. 

Monday, February 8, 2016

Of Death and Regrets

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh...

Just received a news, a DIC classmate died due to road accident. I just said Hi to him via FB few months back. Its a shocker. He's the second one in our class that has passed away. With every death, we'll be pushed to reflect. But somehow this particular one left an impact to me. No, I was not close to him, but that kind of sudden death is hard to ignore.

What if it happens to me? I know that asking what if is not good. If I know that I will die tomorrow. This would be one of my regret. Kim. No, nothing is going on between us. We rarely talked though we are on the same bus every day. Its just that off and on when he did small things like this, it hard to forget him, and hard to not feel anything for him. When this email came in, I was dumbfounded. I left at his last email. I don't know how to feel. He is being nice by asking about it. Its his concern that worries me? What is it that he is not telling me? Other people knew but don't really care to ask unless I tell.

He's on different level, he may well be just keeping up with the current news but I wish he stop doing things like this, concern about things that is close to my heart. Making its hard for me to see him as just another colleague. I wanted to confront him, but I am scared that I will loose him, what if he avoid me? How am I going to face that for the next 2 years? I wanted to ask him, 'So how would you feel if I have to leave before my assignment ends?' I so badly want to ask, but I am scared of the answer, be it his verbal or non verbal ones. Gosh, its tough!

And he will be definitely a regret, if I don't make up my mind soon.

Till next time,


Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Day1: Trip to Obama-land

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh...

While it is still fresh in my mind (well..sort of..), let me share the journey late last year. I made my way from Port Harcourt on the 23rd December. The route is PHC-Paris-Houston. Total flight time is 24 hours. Flight took off 2130H on the 23rd, but we have a 1 hour taxi in Abuja. The flight arrived in CDG Paris at 0600H and I have to wait ~4.5 hours for my next flight to Houston. The transit time is decent, I had time to freshen up, perform my solat and just not rushing things. CDG does not have a dedicated prayer room, but the waiting hall is quite spacious and at the early hours there were not many people around. This is my second time transit in CDG and I'm fine with it.

I arrived in Houston the same day 1430H, but that doesn't mean the flight time is only 4 hours..haha. Houston is behind 7 hours from Paris. That means the flight time is ~11 hours..hahaha.. I slept, I ate, I watched movies and finally I made it!

Getting through immigration in the US airport was not as bad as I imagined. Apart from being annoyed at the Immigration officer who keeps on chatting with each and everyone that on his lane and basically caused delays, the screening was actually just fine. My bag wasn't even opened, and he just asked 2-3 questions to me. I guess my hijab scares him off, so much that he don't have the appetite to interrogate me.. hahaha..

Sakina picked me up half past 5. We went right to a local fast food joint where she treats me to this big portion of middle eastern dish. Rice with meat, salad and what nots. Kenyang weh, have to take away half of it. When we get to her place, that's when the real fun begins. I have been wanting to upgrade my DSLR for the past 2 years, but always too busy to buy it back home. And since I am going for another adventure in Feb, I've been buying things from Amazon and have the delivered to Sakina's place. She was partly my warehouse manager :) receiving goods on my behalf..haha..
I bought a GoPro too! Just realized that I did not took the picture of the whole lot of boxes, it was just piling up in her apartment..haha.. Sorry!
I'll continue the story in the next post. Gosh, am not used to write a long post anymore. The muscle needs to be trained. Haha.. till next post, wassalam. 

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Malas tapi mahu.

Assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I just came back from a close to 3 weeks holiday in Obama-land. Few years ago, I would be busy penning down my thoughts, my adventure and loading buck loads of photos here. I would love to do that, but somehow, no drive. I know for sure if I did not write it down, I will surely forget it. Like how I am forgetting most of the details from Brazil trip. Sayang kan?

Nak habis satu posting ni pon seksa..haha. Oh well, tomorrow is another day.

Yesterday somebody jokingly asked me to run along together. And it made me smile for the rest of my walk. Saja nak bagitau, in case I forget about it later in life. Its those small moments that I cherished, I look forward to, but I don't hope for it. Its that small insignificant things to others that helps me smile once in a while. The other person might not remembers it anymore, but I hope I won't forget. I am collecting this small moments, because I am almost sure that I will never get the big one. Still hoping for miracles though......

Ok, before I merepek any further, I better sign off. Till next time peeps. Sapa ja peeps yang baca ni..hahaha..