Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Rain rain go away

rain, rain go away
come again another day
come at night if you must
end at dawn and start at dusk
let the sun peek from the skies
keep those raindrops from my eyes
stop your wind that howls aloud
unless they're here to shoo the clouds
keep my jeans all dry and nice
i swear i haven't done any vice
i am but new to the country
i don't like how you're welcoming me
rain, rain go away
let the flowers grow as they may
keep me warm below my knees
rain, rain...please?

on other things, I got myself another job. *gasp* can i cope? Of course i can! My gymnastics coaching job only takes up Mondays. So the rest of the week i'm free. :) So i took on this gym trainer job in Sylvia Park so i can conveniently walk across to and from work. It's a GREAT place to work. NOTHING like the gym I worked in before. NO sales targets. Just concentrate on meeting people and helping them get fit! I've been taking body measurements so far, and just showing them around the gym. And my colleagues are really nice and friendly. And my uniform is a black dri-fit top and NIKE tracks! Ah...i *heart* my life now. :)

My studies are getting more interesting too! sport science rock, i tell you. If only they sent their students on like races and competitions and stuff. that would be so awesome. :) but yea, seriously, my course is amazing!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

grey-skied weekend

alas...after looking forward to my first weekend after class had started for 5 pretty alright, pretty sunny days, the weather in Auckland took a turn and black, puffy rain clouds flew in just when Saturday morning started. and it rained. for the entire weekend.

the metservice here had predicted a huge storm that was coming our way during the weekend and police had urged everyone to stay home on the radio. and on the internet..
Press Release

For immediate release

25 July 2008


MetService expects the Auckland region to be hit by a severe storm between midday Saturday and midday Sunday.

'This is no ordinary storm. It's one of the largest and deepest lows we've seen for some years,' MetService spokesman Peter Kreft says.

'By the time this system reaches northern New Zealand on Saturday, it is likely to have significant destructive potential. The real issue will be the wind, with gusts of more than 110km/h expected,” he says.

Radio Network's weather analyst describes the storm as 'extremely rare and nasty.”

The Auckland Region Emergency Management Office is monitoring the weather situation and recommends people listen to the radio for Civil Defence advice or check the Yellow Pages in your phone book on how best to prepare for this storm.

Auckland may have heavy rain and strong winds which may cause flooding and power outages in some areas. People should follow the advice given and prepare themselves just in case.

Before the storm hits you should:

§ Check your drains and spouting to make sure they are clear of blockages.

§ Pick up rubbish around your house that could become airborne.

§ Bring rubbish bins indoors.

§ Bring pets inside.

§ Boaties are recommended to check their moorings.

§ Check on your next door neighbours.

If the storm hits we would recommend:

People stay at home, do not travel unless absolutely necessary.

§ Open a window on the side of the building away from the wind. This will relieve pressure on the roof and help prevent it lifting

§ Close all curtains to slow down flying glass and airborne objects

§ Stay away from doors and windows. If the wind becomes destructive, shelter further inside the house.

and shermayne went back home for the weekend. i was invited but i thought i had stuff to do, so i stayed back, thinking i'd do a bit of revision, chat with some friends from home and stuff. but i was actually quite scared yesterday. should any window be shattered in the storm i really would not know what to do. and i'd be terrified all by myself.

but the storm came and went, and it was only really strong wind and rain. nothing shattered, nothing broke. i dont even see tree branches on the roads. i've seen bigger storms back in Subang.

Today, the weather remained wet, dark and gloomy. I have officially been home for 48 hour. or more. and I've verbally spoken no more than 5 words that is to Shermayne when she came in this morning to drop some things off before going off again. I chatted with kenneth on skype for a while, but that was about it. i feel quite miserable, truth be told.what have i been doing? online first aid crash course, blog surfing, online comic reading, and some letter writing. have yet to touch my books, but i will right after i'm done with this. to battle the cold, (and the calories from snacking on chips n cookies) i have resorted to running up and down the stairs of this apartment. i.sound.crazy.yup, quite sad, but hey least my hair looks absolutely fab! seriously, the weather works wonders for my hair:)

p/s: if u see me online and ure free to chat, by all means buzz me because i'm extremely bored. and lonely. =)

Friday, July 25, 2008

14 days

i've been here for 14 days now.

first week of uni has officially been experienced. and i have learned brains had better get its scientific wheels oiled or else i'm so doomed. i have left science behind for so long its not funny. i actually found myself missing the simple straightforward theories of consumer behaviour and marketing of services. i guess for now things are at its very basic because it is the introduction chapter and such. but i am bracing myself for much deeper, heavier material to come my way and i had better be able to stomach all of it. i try to comfort myself that I am doing semester 2 subjects first and that is technically a tad harder than semester 1 subjects. then again, self pity isn't gonna get me anywhere, so growing up and taking it like a right minded 22 year old should be my game plan.

how have i been getting along? peachy.

i have explored my cullinary skills quite a bit, i do believe i can kau tim dinner for my family when i get home without sending anyone to the toilet to barf or purge. =)

i've also shaken off the fear of eating alone. in fact eating alone these days are much looked forward to because it means i can shamelessly cook things for myself without embarrassment. Shermayne is a great chef, so i try to stand back and manage the easier tasks such as wash up, slice cabbages, chop garlic, etc.

on top of that i've been going places too, by myself no less. the train is my horse and google earth is my rising sun. i rely on google earth so much these days. i gave away my map of auckland city to a lost looking passerby on Monday. she and her son looked Chinese, could be Malaysian, or Singaporean, i dont know. so yea, google earth has been my life saviour.

and i walk a lot. i climb stairs and hills a lot. i come back with very sore feet everyday that running has lost its appeal, even if the finish line of my run is Mount Wellington. I give excuses like its getting dark soon, or it looks like it's going to rain, but really it's because my feet hurt. oh and because i'm sleepy. or hungry. or just plain lazy.

i am not constipated which is a very true indication of good dietary habits. because the moment i don't eat right, i get constipation. hence, no worries to all at home, Karen is eating and living healthily despite her minimal knowledge in cooking.

what else? oh i got a job! at Meadowbank School as a gymnastics coach! haha though it's probably only 3 days a week. and 3 hours a day. but yea, i get to teach little adorable ang moh children. what joy!

so yup. i'm all good. i'm not saying i don't have moments whereby i think of home and the convenience of a 24 hour mamak with friends and a boyfriend and coming home to home cooked dinner ready on the table and warm sunny weathers. i do. i'm having one right now as i type, because it's a Friday night and i really don't know what to do. Shermayne invited me to a dessert party where they were selling cakes i think. Fund raiser. I didnt feel like having cakes, neither did i feel like mingling tonight. so yes, i miss home. usually at this ater dinner hour.

but that aside, i'm doing just fine. :)
just browsing through some old photos...ahah Rosie darn tahan man in Ice Bar.
and she's got her nice gimrama fingers up for the 2nd picture. and Gene's got her lips pursed up for some reason. I was...dark.very dark. ahahah...

Thursday, July 24, 2008

team games

i think sometimes my biggest fear is failing other people. not failing myself, failing others. to be the cause of failure. the obstacle between another person and their goal.

yea, the thought of that scares me senseless.

which is the reason why i think i'll never enjoy team games unless i know for sure that i absolutely rule in it. then i'll be the cause of victory.

that i can handle.

that's my ego problem.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

First day of school

Yup, so after my mount wellington adventure, what happened was...Uni started!

And my first day of uni, was needless to say very unorthodox. it was the kind of "first day of school" where everything that could possibly go wrong, did go wrong. Here's how it went.

I rose bright and early at 7.15 am. Got ready, and had a banana for breakfast with some hot tea. Walked to the train station across my flat and boarded the train to Tamaki campus which is nearer to my flat. Tamaki campus has my sport science subjects, but not my electives such as Medsci and Psych which are held in the city campus. My train fare to Tamaki campus is 84 cents one way whereas to city campus its 2.28 cents one way. (i buy the 10 pass which is $8.40 and $22.80 respectively, hence the odd cents value). Guess what? the train was slightly delayed, so i got to my campus just in time to board the free shuttle bus to the city campus. I ran to the bus and managed to catch it on time.

There was a terrible jam on the motorways (highways) so the bus reached city campus quite late as well, so i ran to attend my first ever lecture of the semester MedSci 142 only to see a nice piece of paper pasted on the doors of the lecture hall ( MEDSCI 142: Lecture starts tomorrow here, same time). haha...owell anyway, my Medsci lab is in the hospital which is about 15-20 mins walk from the city campus. since lecture was cancelled, i decided to take a slow walk to the hospital. On normal days id have to rush there after lecture coz i only have 20 minutes to get there. i reached there about 10 minutes before my lab was supposed to start and there was a LONG queue at the entrance. you need to get a pass to enter the hospital and for that i paid $10. Luckily this is valid for my entire 3 years. When i finally got the card, and got shuffled around a bit because they thought my surname was E-Ling instead of Siah, i was almost half an hour late for lab. Entering my lab class, they gave me a pair of surgical gloves and a labcoat and shoved a DEAD RAT ON A TRAY into my hands! I stared at it in horror and realised that class had already started and the lecturer was rambling on about internal organs. I found the nearest empty seat, and when i sat down the lecturer announced "Ok theory over. Now let's dissect!" Great, i'm entirely clueless.

Dissection was fun except for the part where the rat smelled awful! I punctured a couple of blood veins here n there making my rat all bloody so i couldnt quite see the organs clearly. my gloved hands were all bloody making it look like ive just attempted surgery. Then, the lecturer said "now based on your dissection, draw out the diagram of internal organs. Right. all i saw was BLOOD RED. Nvm..i stole sideways glances at the nice kiwi girl next to me, since she borrowed my eraser. And I managed to somewhat get the outline of everything.

And then, if the day wasn't bad enough, the nice lab asisstant came around and handed out multiple choice answer sheets! There was a test! and it was going to be graded! oh my God!!! I could have laughed if i wasn't so extremely nervous. Turned out quite okla. I actually got some of the things he said during the dissection so i probably got 5/10 right. I think.

After that, no amount of washing could remove the stench on my fingers. I came home and washed my hands once with body soap and again with hair shampoo just so i can use my hands to eat a cookie.

Yea after that i had one psych lecture which was just introduction, no big.
rainbows happen very often here, coz of the rain, sunshine, rain, sunshine erratic weather :)

Sunday, July 20, 2008

mount wellington and other stories much has been happening. but every time i get home i feel extremely lazy to blog. that coupled with the fact that internet here is quite unpredictable, as unpredictable as the weather here in Auckland...:)

Click on photos for larger size.
anyway, first things first. I went on my little own adventure up Mt Wellington, this mountain near my place which is actually a dead volcanic crater. I located it on Google Earth and made my way there on Friday morning. it's about 3-4 km away and it took me about 35 minutes on foot, that including all the photo opportunity stops i took. The mountain was really beautiful..
The view of Auckland city was quite magnificent, and i won't be surprised if i find myself lugging all my books and hitting the summit during my study break. I can't believe i live so near a mountain! It was the sort of place that would tempt you to break into song at the very top of the world going "The hills are aliveeeeeeeee!" =)
The cows in this pic were HUGE and black and i could've sworn one of them wasn't too pleased with me. It was lying down by the path and as i wanted to cross it, the cow got up and stared at me. I got a bit cautious, so i texted Ben and here's how the text conversation went:

Me: Hey Ben, do cows bite?
Ben: No, but it depends. I supposed they don't bite like horses do, but i'm sure they can bite if they want to.
Me: oh, coz i'm atop Mt Wellington and this cow's staring at me. i'm scared. haha...
Ben: haha cool. well, have a staring competition!

i did. the cow stared square into my eyes, and mooooooed at me. i did a 180 degree turn on my heels and scampered off the other way. hey, when ure all alone on a mountain you find that your courage is halved. at least mine did.

anyway, along the way i saw many shops and supermarkets. Rebel sport is a HUGE outdoor sports gear place and it's got the coolest sports gear on discount! ah, to be rich and have spending power!

At night i met Irvin and Abigail for dinner! and they both brought along their other halves. so I brought Shermayne! =) it was a great dinner, best i've had so far because of the chatter and subang jaya talk. Irvin's girl, Steph, is from DJ school and she knows Yuh Huey! and Abigail's man, Alex, is from Seafield and he knows Khai Ron and Charles and co! haha, what a wonderful dinner it turned out to be. :)I followed Shermayne and her friends to some of the night spots in the city after dinner, which really isn't much. We hopped around, and finally settled on a nice Mexican pub where people smoked outdoors and danced salsa indoors. I kinda like that place, except this old man kept asking us to go dance. I was in no mood to salsa..haha...

Saturday (yesterday), i spent half the day moping around the house coz Shermayne was out and the internet was down. Thank God she came home a little after lunch and we started making stuff! I learned how to make ondeh-ondeh and kiuh bingkar. It's really easy!
At night we went to this pot luck party that her friend hosted because they just ended their Malaysian uni games called Bersatu and they came out first. :) there was a LOT of food. we even got to bring home a whole chicken for our dinner! whoopee! :)

yup, that sums up my first week here in Auckland. Class starts tomorrow, which in the beginning i couldn't wait for it to start. But now i'm kinda hoping i can laze around a bit more. :) hehe...

yup, Auckland's turning out pretty great. :)

Click here for more photos of Mt Wellington.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Auckland City

Auckland city isn't very huge. it's roughly the size of Melbourne city. I don't think i've walked all the roads yet, but i think i've seen enough. I headed to the city today to collect my student ID from the city campus. and to sign up for Student Job Search. =)
standing at the pits of the valley

One very distinctive feature of the city is it's terrain. It's really HiLLy! i actually find it really cool coz I keep imagining myself zorbing through the roads in the city, over all the traffic! haha, could be fun. :)
yup, lots of uphill...but the park's beautiful though...

And I think I don't have to worry so much about putting on weight now. Because the road to uni from the train station goes through a valley in the center of the city. and when i reach the very top of the other side, i have to surpass Albert Park, which is also a park atop a hill! yea, more uphill climbing.

Anyway, i didn't take many pictures of the uni coz i was extremely hungry at that time. I couldnt wait to get done with my stuff and find a place to eat. And so when i finally got my student card, bought my concession train tickets, signed up for Student Job Search, i almost ran across Albert Park, to this quaint little Japanese restaurant I spotted on my way up called Roll Black Sushi or something. Can't really remember. They serve fantastic sushi! and free green tea too! :)
D, the one on the far right 2nd row has pineapple, avocado and cream cheese...yummmm...

Monday, July 14, 2008

and so we ran...

i ran today! Sher Mayne and her friends Shavin and Ivan took me to Mission Bay in the city to run. We started at about 5.50 pm and it was already dark. We ran 6 km in the cold 14 degree temperature. I think i run better in cold conditions. :)
before the run. we were trying to put on a running pose, but i think shermayne and i look like we're doing the luau dance or something...
after the run, showing some muscle

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Auckland: Day #1-3

So I'm here in Kiwiland. Yes, I arrived safe and sound, sorry for not blogging about it. I was more excited about talking to people on Skype on my first night, that before I knew it, it was 4 in the morning Auckland time. and i had been awake for exactly 24 hours. =)

Anyway, i'm loving it here. Everything's given me reason to love this place..

1. The Apartment

My place rocks. like for real. It's brand spankin' new. Nobody has lived here before so everything is 100% virgin. And its really modern. The kitchen has all these modern hi-tech stuff like those flat stoves? u know those electrical ones, without fire? yea, it's a gazillion times cleaner and less dangerous. And it comes complete with microwave oven, baking oven, fridge, everything la. Sherymayne's parents are kind enough to supply some stuff like cooking oil, rice, sauce, salt, sugar, meehoon, and lots of stuff. There are also enough plates, bowls, cutleries, everything. The sink has that grinder thing which just grinds away all the bits and pieces of food from the plates. I've seen this in Heroes, where Claire sticks her fingers into it and comes out all bloody and crooked. so yea, i'm quite afraid of it actually. But it's soooo cool! But the best part is, my kitchen has a dish washing machine!!! like omg, am i spoilt or am i spoilt!

My room has a double bed. I dont even sleep on a double bed at home! and i have one of those sliding door closets which i've always wanted! Man i LOVE my room. of course, those and a small study table and that pretty much sums up my room, but i still love it! =)

Even my bathroom is worth shouting about because the shower is strong! I love strong showers. And its got this electrical metal towel rack which you can switch on to keep the towel warm and toasty. cool huh? So you'd better come visit me!

p.s.: sorry photos later, I haven't taken any of the apartment, strangely. haha...

2. The place

My apartment. Below are office blocks, above each one is a 2 bedroom apartment.

I live right next to a huge ass shopping centre called Sylvia Park. For those who knows Harbourtown in Perth, yea it looks something like that. But not the factory outlet prices la. Its on mega sale now though. Every shop has a sale. And there are 3 or 4 outdoor equipment shops in it! At home i can only find like 2. and that also so far away. Pak'nSave is a huge supermarket right next to the shopping centre and it's cheap coz they don't give plastic bags. so Joey, i'm afraid the bag you got me has been turned into my shopping bag. =)
Sylvia Park Shopping Center

i live 5 km away form my campus, which is not the main campus. main campus is in the city. ive thought of running there on days i feel like i want to save a little cash. there's also a nice big mountain nearby which Shermayne's dad says i can run up. Cool, can't wait to do that.

To get to the city and to campus, there's a train station which is right behind Sylvia Park. So i simply cut across the mall, board the train to get to the city. very convenient =)

3. The weather

Weather here isn't harshly cold, but it annoys me that it rains, like the whole day. People here don't seem to mind it though, they simply walk in the small pitter-patter and puddles don't seem to faze them. Today is actually the first time i see bright sunshine since i got here. I hope there'll be more sunny days, coz it makes Auckland so much more like how i imagined it to be. I can walk around fine with a long sleeve shirt and a jacket outside. So it's really not that bad. and my sinus has surprisingly not acted up. =)

Sitting on the toilet bowl appears to be quite an eye openner especially in the mornings or in the middle of the nights. So yea, I so get you now, Mellyboo.

4. The company
Ben spotting a beard

Ben who came to pick me from the airport and entertained me for dinner on the first day has been very welcoming. Now, Sher Mayne is the girl i live with, and I have her to thank for a lot of things. Her parents are extremely nice and generous. Which reminds me, I better pay her rent soon. Her parents own the place i live in, and Sher Mayne stays with me simply because its much nearer to our campus than her own home in the suburbs. Below our apartment is an office space which her parents work in. So yea, it's a pretty cool living arrangement.
Sher Mayne was fast on the court! All smiles after the victory

Today I met up with Sher Mayne's netball team and I met some pretty cool people. Netball here is played indoors and men play it too. It's pretty interesting, perhaps because Sher Mayne's team came out champs at today's league.
The trophy which strangely doesn't have a netball on it

There are a lot of other people I've yet to meet up with. I will soon enough I guess. :)

5. The Lifestyle
I cooked dinner today together with Sher Mayne. We made fried rice, with chicken and carrots and cabbage. Then with the drumstick bones Sher Mayne made chicken soup. And I fried beans omelet. Not too shabby =)

Havent started running yet, will start tomorrow I guess. =)

So yea, that's Auckland in the past 3 days. It's been interesting, I feel like i'm on homestay coz SherMayne's parents take such good care of me. I miss Dennis quite a bit and i now that I'm away I feel like I want to talk to my family more. But it's been great!

Love it. :)

Thursday, July 10, 2008

sawadeekap from Bangkok

hey! yup am currently in Bangkok International Airport. took me awhile to find a network i could connect to but finally i did!

It was almost funny how i sat down at a spot, take out my laptop, connect to one of the many unsecured networks and fail to surf the internet. then i get up and go find another spot and do the same thing again. i think i did it about 4-5 times...until i gave up, sent dennis and my mum a text saying i cant find an internet connection. i made my way to the boarding gates, tried my luck one last time and voila! im connected to MSN!

Anyway, i've got a 3 hour transit here. i managed to get my parents on MSN, dennis and some friends too. nothing like staying connected from a foreign country i tell you. Feels pretty good. :)

I had a rather large entourage come to see me off at KLIA just now. Am very very touched indeed. Eventhough i kinda made some of them come. ahaha...owell, here are some photos.

yupyup...i'm off to auckland. will upload more photos soon. see ya!

Monday, July 07, 2008

The Ultimate Race

Dennis looking sleepy

Dennis and i took part in a race on Sunday. He was my teammate for The Ultimate Race - a shopping mall race a la The Amazing Race held in 1 Utama organized by When we signed up (which was on Tuesday) there was only one other form in the folder. So I kinda thought it would be an easy win because, get this, first prize was RM10,000 and there were 10 consolation prizes, RM1,000 each. So I figured, if another 8 more teams joined, we would still be able to bag RM1,000. I asked Jon and Sarah to sign up to since they were there on Tuesday as well.

me attempting to look "ferocious", failing obviously. the crowd waiting for race to begin.

Come Sunday morning, 1 Utama was swarmed with youngsters in trainers and sporty gear all drenched with spirit and adrenaline rush. It was a bit of a disappointment for me, but I should've seen it coming with such attractive prizes. There were 140 odd teams. No kidding!

Dennis' number on which i doodled. :) The first clue.

Race was delayed due to lots of queueing and waiting for marshalls to get ready. we were all given t shirts and numbers to be worn during the race. i really didn't know what to expect of the race. but i bumped into a lot of people that I knew - Hooi Lian and Li Yi was one of them! haha...

One of the challenges was to climb at Camp 5! woohoo~!

Race finally kicked off at 11.45 am when it was supposed to start at 10.45 am. And boy did we run! we ran across the entire new wing of 1 utama, up and down emergency staircases. I honestly have not run so hard before. And Dennis could run! For most parts of the race i was clearly out of breath. It didn't help that i was in jeans and Crocs sandals. And an underwired bra. I know, pretty dumb move for a person who's a season racer. But I guess i kinda unerestimated the race. My bad.

Another challenge was to look for the diving center. I never knew they had a diving center! and a pool!

Needless to say we both worked up quite a sweat and quite an apetite by the end of the race too. But we came in a tad too late. the 11th team finished half an hour before us, or so we were told. So no cash prize for us.

But it was exremely fun! I never had so much fun racing before, seriously. Perhaps i was racing with my boyfriend, and perhaps he was a super teammate! Or perhaps it's coz it wasn't under the hot sun for a change. But i had a blast!:)

Sunday, July 06, 2008

when "coupla weeks more" turns into "coupla days more"

ok...i feel it now. the urgency to get everything i could possibly bring over in my 30 kg weight limit, that would ensure my survival in Kiwiland, to buy anything that would help me save my cost of living because it's 2.5 times cheaper here, to get all things sorted out over there from who's picking me up, to where i'm gonna live, and last but not least, the urgency to meet up, spend time with and cherish the people i'd be leaving behind.

it's not supposed to sound that sad. i am, without a doubt, thrilled and psyched to be embarking on this new chapter of my life. i have been waiting for this for a pretty long time, and it's all happening sooner than it seemed. but a nagging thought rests in the pits of my mind, a restless knowing that things aren't going to be the same right now. we promise to keep in touch, and we hug and bid our goodbyes with hopes that time would accelerate till the time we meet again, just so we can preserve whatever ties and relationship we have fostered. but how often does that happen?

i've started packing a few days ago. i need a bigger bag. my things are bursting out of the one i have now and it ain't because i'm a heavy traveller. i'd like to think i am actually able to live off the bare necessities. but the winter stuff just takes up too much space.

i've 4 days left before i fly off. i think i've managed to meet up with all the people who see me on a pretty regular basis, those who would actually feel my absence in their lives (che wah...hehe...). There are others whom i failed to squeeze them in, but they should be fine without me, since we don't meet up that often anyway.

Shirlyn's coming home! I miss that woman so much, i don't know if 2 days are enough for us to catch up!

And then there's Dennis. I'll miss the boy so much. If at any point in time i find myself curled up in my room on a cold cold day in Auckland willing time to just fast forward to December, my guess is it would be because of him.

And there's my family. It aches me to know that they've paid so much and I'm the one who's going to have all the fun. For them i'd wish to accelerate time to the year 2010. Convocation. I look forward to be able to repay my brother and my parents for this degree more than anything else in the world.

All these emotions are being mixed and blended in the depths of my stomach.

I think I feel an anxiety attack comin...