February 23, 2007

Food, More Food

It's already the 10th day of CNY and already, I'm starting to feel the aftereffects of it.

So much food.... I'm just bursting...

年三十晚 feast

Monday, 26th February 2007 was the traditional "Hokkien" Chinese New Year. Legend has it that during the Japanese Occupation of Malaya, the Chinese Hokkien celebrated CNY on the 9th day after hiding in fields of sugar cane for 8 days. When they emerged from the fields, they realized that 9 days had passed. So, during this day, it is a special time for the Chinese Hokkien in Malaysia.

So, during this day, the lowly sugar cane is taken and placed in the house to remind us of how this plant had saved our ancestors during those trying times.

I'm not sure if this is true or not but that was what I was told-la. (^_^)

If I'm not right, please correct me-la. Kekekeke...

Anyway, this year's CNY has been all about the food! I have a few other photos of food but am rather lazy to showcase them here. Hehe.. That has been the hallmark of my CNY this year.

It was fun to meet up with my cousins and relatives who are a year older and so, being more mature, they are alot more interesting to chat with. The young kids had a lot of fun with Snoopy who is exhausted from all the CNY fun. :P

February 17, 2007


猪打狗... hehehe...

It is that time of year again. So quickly time passes by...

Yes, it is the time to start stuffing your faces with oranges, cookies and "龙肉" (long yuk), peanuts, cashew nuts and other kinds of goodies.

Yes, you can forget about your hard work you did in January as part of your 2007 resolution. It is going out the window in the next few days. (^_^)

Frankly, every year I either enjoy or tear my hair out during this time of year because I have to face something horrible.... my relatives...

They will always ask the following questions:
  1. What are you working as now?
  2. How much are you making?
  3. Where are you working?
  4. Are you still studying?? (Doesn't make sense, to them, you are always either in Form 5 or Uni)
  5. Got bf/gf?
  6. If answer to last question was "Yes", when are you getting married?
  7. If answer to last question was "No", WHY???? (followed by long narrative about continuing the "Tan" bloodline)
Anyway, I don't blame my relatives for asking such questions because I only see them once or twice a year. We don't usually visit them most of the time because of our busy schedule and so, I tolerate these questions.

Other closer relatives would be asking about how my work is and whether I'm attached or not. I think they may have given up hope that I'll continue any bloodline from me. Hehehee.. Frankly, I'm happier with my single life but who knows maybe one day I'll settle down? :P Only time and God will tell. ;)

However, some friends I know said that CNY is the time when all the "ammo" comes out, i.e. GOLD jewelery. I have one particular friend, whose mom always buys a bit of gold so that she can "show off" her status to her relatives during CNY. Hehehehe... I'm lucky that my mom doesn't like gold so much. My poor friend has to "donate" part of her $alary to get her mom some gold... ;)

Anyway, as the "年三十晚" approaches, I wish everyone a Happy Year of Pig! May it bring more prosperity and joy to all!!! (^_^)

祝大家新年快乐!! 恭喜发财!!!

February 10, 2007

Mind over Heart?

As my clock counts down to my departure from UK, I'm looking back to reflect to see what I had done wrong and how I can best improve my attitude from here.

Like an athlete who constantly wants to improve, I often take time to reflect on my performance after I've completed a particular task. I benchmark myself against my past performance, as well as compare myself with other people's performance in the same category. Of course, I must not let other people's performance demotivate me, but rather, I should us that as a goal to aspire to. If you keep thinking that you are the best and not improve, you are only limiting yourself to your past performance. The world is changing very quickly, what is done in the past, is the past. It can be used as fuel to push us to move forward, but we should not rest on our laurels.

A very good example is Tiger Woods, one of the great golf players of our time; comparable to the great Jack Nicklaus. After taking time out to improve his swing, he fumbled for a while, not doing very well for a while. However, after he got hold of it, he began to win more tournaments than ever before. The reason why he changed his swing? He figured that his old swing was not only limiting him but also may cause problems in the near future. Now, he's at the top of his game but he's not satisfied. He's improving other aspects of his game.

So, the same goes for me. I'm not fully satisfied with my performance and attitude this time around. I've been a big whine and wimp, complaining to others about my predicament and etc. I realized that when I started to sound like a broken record, I suddenly decided to stop this whining attitude. I decided that I needed to find solutions to my problems. It is OK to complain a little, for we being unsatisfied can only find a few methods to express our disatisfaction, - to express, to keep it all inside or just completely ignore it.

I realized that I had been very reactive. I should have been more proactive about things. I didn't do a pre-emptive strike. Why so? I was involved too much by my heart - sad, depressed, homesick... I didn't use my head enough. It is hard to push away emotions since I'm a person with emotions, not a robot.

I had been affected by my surroundings and I did not let my logical mind to take over. I let my emotions dictate my mood for the day, which is not good because it did not motivate me to do my best.

However, realizing this, I try to change my surroundings by being more cheerful and spreading happiness all around. I did this for a while, but I was affected by the mood of my colleague, who, not only being quiet and reserved, suddenly changed his mood from being robotic to moody and dark. I have suddenly become negative because I was influenced by this.

I got plenty of advice to just ignore this guy and try to be cheerful, but it is hard to do so, when you are sharing a house with a colleague whose mood is affecting you. So, what can I do? I have tried to cheer this guy up but it is not doing any good. Any decent conversation I try to strike up, has become into a shouting match.

So, I have come to the conclusion that in this situation, I should have just kept quiet and let him be. He is not a sociable guy and hence, does not want the pleasure of my company. So, in the future, should I meet a person like him again, I know what to do and spare myself the suffering agony and waste of time trying to be this guy's friend.

The article which sparked this blog entry is here, entitled "Angry/negative people can be bad for your brain".

I was thinking to myself what I can do to improve my attitude and in the process make myself a little happier, and then I realized that I could have let my brain be sucked into being influenced by the things and people around me.

Looking back, I have come to realize that I may not fit a particular organization because I find myself changing from being very pro-active to being a little slow and reactive to situations. This is not me. I am a person who is on the move and likes to do things quick and efficient.

So, in short, has my mind being overshadowed by my heart? :)

The answer is yes. I have failed and let my emotions get the better of me. I guess it is good to just step back and look at things from a different perspective and just move on.

Let this be a lesson to me and that is it.

February 09, 2007

Another Day, Another Blog Gets Older...

This blog turns 1 today (Snoopy's b'day cake - borrow 1st arr...)

Happy Birthday to 'Chasing Tails'....

It is another year, this blog has officially turned 1 year old. It only has about 79 posts and growing... (^_^)

I still remember I just started this blog when I still had my other one running at MSNSpaces (now, Livespaces). I decided to give Blogger a shot again since it had some of the features I wanted. Between all the hang-ups while it was still at beta and now, with the introduction of some new features, I feel that I should still stick with Blogger although I'm tempted by Wordpress. Pssstt... I also have a link at Wordpress but it links back to this site. (^_^)

I still have a lot to learn about blogging. I'm looking into using Technorati as well as look into posting up my RSS so that you can subscribe to my blog. Besides that I've got to work on my 2007/2008 layout too!!

So much to do, I envision 2007 will be another busy year for this blogger!

I wish to thank everyone for their support. I'll try to post more useful stuff on this blog but for now, I can only do quick updates since I don't have Internet connection at home while in the UK. I should be able to do more when I'm back home.

For more, I would like to say, 谢谢! Thank You, Terima Kasih, Danke, 너를 감사하십시요, Grazie, and last but not least... ありがとう

February 08, 2007

It's Snowing!!!!

The car doesn't need a wash... BTW, I wrote this in the snow with my hands....

It has snowed again. We were expecting heavy snowfall in the wee hours of the morning but it turned out that the snowfall began late at our area. The expected snowfall is to be as thick as 10cm. This prompted some schools to close.

The car is covered with snow!! Can you see the little snowflakes flying around? (Click image to zoom)

Anyway, I woke up at about 6am and found that there wasn't any snow yet but looked like there was frost. Frost on the windscreen is not good because it is a layer of ice and you'll have to de-ice the windscreen first before you can work the wipers. (-_-)

The neighbourhood covered in white stuff.. Very powderful-le...

My colleague agreed that we should get to work earlier or else we'll be stuck on the roads due to the snow. Our route to work now has changed ever since we moved house and so, we use part of the A52 roadway to get to the office. On the way there, there is a queue as cars head towards the city centre and so, since it is a snow day, it can be quite congested.

Driving in snow is like driving in the rain, it can get slippery as the roads are slick with ice. The council will get people to de-ice the road by putting salt and that melts the ice. So, what you're left with is a wet road with puddles. Some smaller roads may still have snow and so, that can get slippery too. So, have to be careful-la.. :sweat:

Anyway, the snow is melting away liao. It might snow again on Saturday and if it does, I'll take more photos with my better camera. ;)

Note: These photos were taken using my SE K750i. Not bad-le.. (^_^)

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