Thursday, February 26, 2009


It rained all evening today. The tennis court was wet and I definitely didn't want to fight the traffic to go to the gym. While I was looking for some activities to do, my neighbour appeared with some ping pong bats! Wallah...suddenly the gloomy day seemed bright again.

Sunday, February 22, 2009


A friend of ours was overseas when we needed a baby sitter on Valentine's Day. So, we decided to borrow her maid for the night.
We greeted her with a BIG welcome, looking at her as our saviour, not just to babysit, but perhaps to help with the ironing and some dishes. She wowed me by completing the task at hand in such a short time. I was impressed, but upon inspection of The Work, I secretly returned all the "ironed" clothes back in the laundry room for re-ironing and quietly stacked up my ever so reliable German maid with all the "clean" dishes and left for the gym.
One thing for sure, we are so glad to be done with a live in maid. Now we just have a few German maids specialising in different tasks nicely tucked in our extended kitchen. The unbeatable qualities of these German maids are that they are silent, undemanding, very reliable and do the job to extreme satisfaction. They may be costly, but they are worth every penny of it as there is no price for the remedy of a heart ache and a bad mouth.

Saturday, February 21, 2009


We were all dressed up to the 9th...big lapels, frilled collars, bell bottoms, afros, chunky accessories and yes, platform shoes. The place was Leonardo's and the theme was 70s.

Franco and I were never a big fan of Valentine's celebration. The last time we were out celebrating this Day of Love was in Eden Damansara way back in 1997! We were not even married then. I remembered succintly our heated discussion on maths versus languages - we were so loud that we probably spoilt the romantic evening for couples who were trying to "score" that night! For the Malays, the term to describe this is "potong stim!"

12 years later, we are still married, still bickering about useless things and still having fun doing it. 12 years later, it is no longer romantic loud dinner for 2, but for almost a dozen of us who all had to sit on the balcony of the restaurant in honour of the one smoker in our group! But hey, since Mr. Chan knows "people", we obviously did not want to mess around with Mr. Chan's daughter - the highly emotional, forever "have to look glamorous" Pamela.

While we were busy strategising how to make money through Mr. Chan's connection, our light footed friend hit the dance floor and danced the night away in her semi-platform shoes. She was having so much fun that I didn't have the heart to remind her of the morning after effect. In hindsight, I should have...

As with all great parties in Kuala Lumpur, the finale would always take place in a Mamak shop over a cup of teh tarik and a plate of roti canai. As this is one of those parties, we headed to one in Bangsar, to recap the evening's event, and yes...what an evening we had.


It is amazing
How much life has to offer
And yet for a lot of people
It is just work ...and work and work
How can one be so addictive to it?
How can one be so stressed by it?
After all, it is just a means to an end
He was once like that
But now he is the last to leave the house in the morning
And the first to arrive in the evening
What causes the change?
Adopting my motto, he said all I can say!

Friday, February 13, 2009


It has been a tiring week...I played tennis almost daily as I am having what is equivalent to the "Winner's Streak"! finishing the game in style, but more importantly, in time to catch a client from Philippines for breakfast!
Work time has been haphazard to accommodate Tasha's tests. Since we did not know about the test (typical of my daughter) until very late, I had to skive work (typical of me) so that I can be home early to help with her revision. As a snowball effect I had to continue work after hours as the Client is becoming more demanding and watching your every step!
On top of that my personal training has become tougher - try doing 2 types of sit ups x 2 sets x 55 reps in each set. Further, multiply that with the number of muscles in your body that needs to be worked on. Just having to do the math is mentally tiring, let alone having to physically take on the challenge. All so that I can lose some inches in a few places that sneaked its way when we were in Egypt.
Tired, I resorted to the CDs of Nyonya Nyonya Sosialista that my friend had lent to me that has been sitting on my shelf for yonks, in the hope that the soap would help me fall asleep. It ended up having the opposite effect.
Sleep deprived, physcially knackerred and mentally challenged, I was in no state to work today. So, I decided to use my lunch time to write this blog thinking that it would look like I am working without me having to strain myself.
After the third word, my mind went almost blank (still partially is), I couldn't think of the right word to use and worst, I probably put a lot more strain writing this than if I were to strategise for Pakistan!
Now, I truly understand the origin of the phrase "Thank God It's Friday!"

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


1. An ardent sports person. Can’t live without sports/exercise.
2. My husband is undoubtedly the best in the world. He is funny, caring, romantic, fun fun fun! I married him because he is neat and has great sense of humour.
3. My daughter is my world and my fashion guru. Must say that my style has improved since she was born!
4. Have few close friends. Not good at keeping fair-weather friends. I have no patience nor energy to keep up with the superficialities.
5. Hate Malaysian politics with a vengeance. Just as an example of the “arrogance and selfishness” of these politicians - in this current economic downturn, they are still prioritising party fights over putting up mini budgets that could help thousands of families. Unbelievable!
6. Have immense passion for travelling. Try to go somewhere, everywhere whenever there is a holiday. Even if it is just Cuti Cuti Malaysia. Love to see new things, taste new food, learn different ways of life.
7. Most unforgettable trip was my honeymoon 11 years ago when we traversed the Silk Route. It is a long story but suffice to say, it makes Amazing Race looks so unchallenging.
8. Work mainly for money. Although I love what I am doing now, I will not hesitate to quit when my goals are achieved.
9. I don’t believe in climbing corporate ladder, I don’t believe in loyalty to a particular outfit. I always go where there is more money on the table.
10. I am closest to my older sister whom from very young has been very protective over me. She still comes and does laundry at my place when I don’t have a maid!
11. I find it difficult to forgive and definitely will NEVER forget.
12. Still a true Kelantanese at heart when it comes to food. There is nothing like Kelantanese / Golok food.
13. Still have the desire to learn new things –piano lessons, tennis coaching, personal training are a few of the things I am doing now. Hope to write the Project Management Professional Exam before the year ends.
14. My husband’s most frequent complain about me is that I spend too much time playing tennis. So, I guess I am not doing so badly.
15. My common complain about my husband is that the volume is too loud when he is watching TV. Petty but deafening. I hate noise in whatever shape or form!
16. Unlike most girls, I don’t particularly enjoy shopping for trivial things like fancy clothes, uncomfortable shoes, handbags, knick knacks. My expenditure usually revolves around golf membership, gym membership, coaching, golf clubs, basketball, bicycle and tennis rackets!
17. Plants die on me for whatever reason there may be – too much water, not enough sun, too much fertiliser, old soil. I don’t have green fingers but fortunately I have friends with green fingers who will save my plants when they are dying.
18. Not a religious person. Trying to learn and practice what I learn but definitely not doing enough in this department.
19. Person who impresses me the most – my first piano teacher, Rauf who has inspired me to continue with my lessons even until now. He has now become a performer and last I heard he was performing in Starhill. This guy plays with his heart and soul. He has set such a standard that it is kind of difficult for me to appreciate other teachers!
20. The most touchy moment (so far) was when my daughter sang “You Raised Me Up” solo at a concert. Both my husband and I were in tears.
21. Very simple person with simple needs. Hate complicated arrangement. Everything must be practical!!!
22. Do not enjoy big group gatherings. I probably really care for about 1% of the people in the group and thus find it a waste of time to even bother with the rest.
23. My husband and I hardly fight, we really pick our battles. Although for a lot of people it may seem that we are fighting all the time because we do speak very loudly to / at each other!
24. Didn't have a wedding, just an akad nikah ceremony attended by a handful of friends and relatives. If I have another chance, I will not do it any other way. Till now, I still couldn’t understand the need for a big wedding reception – and most times twice for the same couple – once for each side!
25. Life is short, always try to live life to the max. So, you will not find me napping in the afternoon to pass time, or hang out at a mall wandering aimlessly or stay at work longer than necessary just to impress the boss!!!

Sunday, February 8, 2009


Egypt in itself should be one of the wonders of the world and the trip that you planned for us made it very unforgettable.
The guides that you have arranged are not just knowledgeable, they are almost like a walking encyclopedia. There was never a question that we raised that went unanswered, and god knows, we asked a lot of questions.

We had fun playing ping pong with Samuel on the cruise, getting to know the perspective of a non-Muslim in a Muslim Country and we thoroughly enjoyed differentiating the temples and understanding the significance of each.

My daughter especially enjoyed Ahmed Nady's company - entertaining and teaching her all the different card games to pass time en route to Alexandria. We were thoroughly immersed in his theories on Ancient Civilisation, the Roman Civilisation and the traffic in Cairo!

The "Meet and Greet" Group and the drivers were always very punctual and polite and there was never a moment of hesitation in their action. We never once doubted the efficiency of your drivers either when they were weaving their ways in the "well orgnised chaos" of Cairo traffic or when we were crossing the dessert in a convoy in the wee hour of the morning.

It was the easiest holiday we had because we never had to do anything but enjoy ourselves to the max.

So thank you to all in your team.

Best Regards, Lini, Franco and Natasha

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


There are 138 pyramids discovered in Egypt as of 2008. Most of them were constructed during the Old Kingdom (3rd Dynasty -2686 BC to 6th Dynasty - 2181 BC) which is frequently referred to as "The Pyramid Age". They were built as tombs for the Pharaohs in preparation for the after life.
The earliest known Egyptian pyramid is the Step Pyramid which was built during the Third Dynasty of Ancient Egypt (27th Century BC) in Saqqara, near Memphis. Memphis at the time was the capital of Egypt.
The architect, Imhotep built Egypt's first step pyramid, by building a series of six successively smaller mastabas (an earlier form of tomb structure), one atop of another.

The best known Egyptian pyramids are those found at Giza, on the outskirts of Cairo. The Great Pyramid at Giza is the largest Egyptian pyramid and it is the only one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World still in existence. It was built as a tomb for Fourth Dynasty Egyptian King Khufu (Cheops in Greek) and constructed over a 20 year period concluding around 2560 BC. This period marked the height of pharonic power during the Old Kingdom. The Great Pyramid was the tallest man made structure in the world for over 3,800 years.

The pyramids on the Giza Plateau near Cairo. At far left is the Great Pyramid of Khufu (Cheops - the great grandfather), in the middle is the pyramid of Khafre (Chephren - the grandfather), and on the right is the smallest of the three major Giza pyramids - that of Menkaure (Mycerinus - the father). On the right of Menkaure Pyramid is a very small pyramid built for his daughter (the daughter).
Of the three, only Khafre's pyramid retains part of its original polished limestone casing, near its apex. This pyramid appears larger than the adjacent Khufu pyramid by virtue of its more elevated location, and the steeper angle of inclination of its construction — it is, in fact, smaller in both height and volume.
However, the Fifth Dynasty pharaoh Userkhaf initiated reforms that weakened both the Pharaoh and central government. His reign was followed by a period of intermittent civil war as a result of the reforms and the strain put on the treasury by the building works of the previous dynasty. There was widespread famine caused by the civil wars and by a period of cooling in the area which reduced and occassionally eliminated the Nile flooding on which their food supplies depended. Central authority crumbled and power returned to local monarchs.


They were civilised when the rest of the Western world was still in the Dark Ages. The year was 5000BC, that made it just over 7000 years ago.

The engineering of the pyramids are still a puzzle to the scientists, mathematicians and engineers world over. Each block of stone used in its construction weighs 220 tonnes, an equivalent of having to carry 100 cars!
The heliographic on the walls of the temples built indicated use of medical equipment and the start of a solar calendar - way back then.

They had a fantastic irrigation system and nilometer as a tax measure whereby the taxes were imposed based on the level of the Nile River.

The Pompei Pillar with height of 28 meter and diameter of 3 meters, made from polished red granite was brought from Upper Egypt, over 900km across the Nile! Don't ask me how they lugged this structure....nobody has figured it out yet.

They mastered the art of mummification to ensure a safe passage to the afterlife. 5000 years later they were still not decomposed and at a glance, you could imagine the feature of each mummy. That was how good they were in preserving the body.

With all those achievements, one would expect a lot out of the country. I did and the past lived up to my expectation, unfortunately I cannot say the same thing about the present state of the country.