Meerkat On the LookOUT

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Blessed Chinese New Year

I think I should've wished everyone earlier, instead of now.

Today's the 3rd day of Chinese New Year. Tengku Mahkota and I are back to work. We enjoy the smooth traffic when people are on holidays and we're taking our own sweet time to get to work. We don't have to get up before 6am. 

This morning...
TM: Wakey...wakey... 
Me: okok...what time is it now?
TM: 5 mins to 7am?
Me: *Got up immediately* WHOT?! * i need to get into office by 8am.
TM: Don't worry...
We left home around 7.10am.

True enough, the traffic was so good. Thank God for that. I reckon most of the people are still back in hometown, enjoying the Chinese New Year with extended family and friends. The chinese schools are closed. 

TM and I have made our strategies. Don't extend your holidays after the public holidays, go to work, enjoy the smooth traffic. Take holidays when most people are back to work. 

Yea, I'm the only chinese in my department who is back to work today. My holidays will start this Friday till next Wednesday. Hoooooray! We're going back to turtle island to spend quality time with Mrs KO. Our reunion dinner is this friday. Mrs Ko said our reunion dinner does not happen once a year, it happens every 1.5 months or 2 months when we travel up north. Does not matter it's gonna be reunion dinner or lunch or breakfast. 

I'm counting my blessing one by one, to be able to spend time with my loved ones, have fellowships with friends and family and have good meals during this festive season. 

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Being together...

Being a married woman, I always seek advice from Tengku Mahkota whenever a decision has to be made. During my singlehood day, I led a single life, I just do anything I like. But, I was taught a simple word of advice from Mrs KO before I left home after Secondary Five 'You can do anything you want, be wise and be responsible. Bear all consequences'. Do you know how POWERFUL is this advice?

Yes, it's SUPER powerful. Indeed, I agree with my mother. She gives me the freedom since I left home. I remember this advice until today and I apply it whenever I need to make a decision. For examples, friend asks me out to go for movie at night. Then I start thinking about 'if i get home late, will it be dangerous?' 'When's the latest time i'll get home?' looking at the negative side if the worst scenario happens, 'what happens if my car breaks down at 12am on a highway? who should i call?' From the questions i raise, i consider myself as a person who does not take risk. That's why I hardly go movies during uni days, my job was just study and study. Such a nerd. I admit it. 

Anyway, back to the subject. Now i'm married. Things are different. Someone is there to share my thoughts and burden. Someone to give me a different idea. Yea, I have someone these days to go out for movies at night, but not so late, no midnight movies. Whenever it comes to where to eat, we'll discuss about it even though i'm given the priviledge to make the final decision. 

Just imagine, one day, Tengku Mahkota has to be away for a few days or even a few months to work. What'll happen to me? My life will be back to singlehood life. He asked me this question a couple of months back. We were talking everything under the sky. This is one of the questions.

How am i gonna cope with my life if he has to work in other places? First answer that came to my mind was 'i won't get a chance to discuss with you where i can go for dinner?' I need to make my own decision. Bear all consequences. I came to realise I'll be alright as long as there is Internet Broadband. I can go online, chat with my friends since I have friends in various places across the globe. If i can't sleep, i can talk to friends in UK. If i get up early, i can talk to friends in Australia. Shouldn't be a problem. I can blog, surf net, online chatting, you-tubing and others. Tengku Mahkota said 'I think you can't leave a day without Internet'. yea yea yea...Also, I can practise my violin, reading, and others.

I think i'll be alright. I appreciate his presence. I appreciate when we have the chance to spend time together, hand-in-hand strolling down the road... Maybe we were separated for months when i was away, we appreciate when we're living under the same roof, at the same place and  country, in the same space and time domains. I'm thankful. 

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


What is Faith? Faith is your trust towards somebody.

Next question, do you have faith in God? Another words, do  you put your Trust in God?

Are you faithful to your marriage?

Learning to be faithful is not an easy task and it's not something that happens within a second. Personally, my faith on someone builds over time. This involves my experience/encounter with that person. Observations. Interactions. 

I've been walking with God for over 10 years, I've put my faith in God again and again. Various trials that I went thru and I keep telling myself to trust in Him, and Him alone. No one else knows better plans than what He has planned for me right in front. I would say that faith and patience come together, they walk hand-in-hand. Because when  you're building your faith on someone, you need patience to find out. 

I would say that it's not easy to maintain the faith we have and furthermore to increase our faith. Being a child of God, we're supposed to be faithful to Him just like how faithful He has been to me. Every challenges that I experienced in my life, i don't think i can see the light at the end of the tunnel without His grace, mercy and wisdom. He has been so faithful. Likewise, I want to be faithful unto Him as well.

James 1: 3-4 'for you know that when your faith succeeds in facing such trials, the result is the ability to endure. Make sure that your endurance carries you all the way without failing, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing'

So, do you have mustard-seed faith? Luke 18:5-6 says 'the apostles said to the Lord, "make our faith greater.' The Lord answered, 'if you had faith as big as a mustard seed,  you could say to this mulbery tree, 'Pull yourself up by the roots and plant yourself in the sea!' and it would obey you'

Grow your seed by walking closely with Him, read His words, quiet time, to pray and listen to His voice. When any trials come, have faith in Him that He will carry us thru. If there's anything that turns up to be the other way round, remember, He wants to build our character, He knows what we can bear and what we cannot bear. He is with us, Emmanuel. 

Monday, January 19, 2009


This morning, on the way to work...
Me: I'm feeling very sleepy because I didn't manage to finish my dreams this morning. I'm gonna close my eyes.
Tengku Mahkota (TM): Alright.

In fact, I didn't  manage to sleep. I closed my eyes. Then i started to wonder 'Where's my portable hardisc?'

Fern: Did you put my hardisc in my bag?
Then, I quickly grabbed my bag and checked. It's not there.
TM: Don't worry, we can go home now.

Looking at my watch, 6.40am. It's a monday morning, bad traffic and we're heading home? Without my hardisc, I can't work at all. All my write ups are there.

TM sped all the way home and we reached at 7am. On the way back, I started to blame myself and apologised to TM. I know how much trouble if we need to go home. Lots of questions on my mind... Why am i so careless? Why I'm not responsible with my stuff? Why i didn't put it back after using? Why i didn't put into the bag even though i saw it on the desk a few times when i walked to the kitchen? TM's gonna stressed up. How is he gonna get his car park in the hospital? 

Looking at the traffic on the opposite direction, I got more worried. 7-8 lanes of car going down to the city. Oh dear, how?  Why am i working in this city? There are more job opportunities in this city? is it the place where money is? Sigh... 

Since i was pretty stressed up, TM suggested 'why not you take emergency leave? stay home and work?' 'Take half day' I didn't. 

Finally, I managed to reach office at 8.03am when I tagged in. TM spent extra money on toll today and more stress on the traffic. But I'd really thank God TM had no car park issue this morning at his workplace. 

Lesson learned today: Check my bag before leaving for office in the future.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

B for ?

During our normal conversation especially over the phone, sometimes we may not hear properly. So, the common practice is using the name of country such as:-
A for Australia
B for Belgium
C for Canada
D for Denmark

However, for lil children, the names of country will not be helpful. The most appropriate is 
A for Apple 
B for Boy
so on...

As part and puzzle of my job, i do technical discussions with researchers over the world thru conference call. Today, I attempted to call Serbia...before I called, I looked up to Wikipedia where does Serbia locate. Oh it's in Europe. But, this place is relatively further than England, where we can speak England. Hence the conversation goes:-

Me: Good morning, may I speak with Professor xxx?
Admin A: errrrrrrrr....
Me: Do you speak English?
Admin A: nonononoo

Admin A put down the phone and Admin B came

Admin B: Hello?
Fern: Good morning, may I speak with Professor xxx?
Admin B: Professor ?
Fern: yea, professor xxxx?
Admin B: Ah...
Fern: Can you share his extension number with me?
Admin B: the number is xxxxxx
Fern: Can I have his email address?
Admin B: er... the email address is his name ...then AT, sssss....
Fern: how many S are there?
Admin B : S...S...B...
Fern: ok. double sb
Admin B: B for BURGER
Fern: oh

I reckon the admintrastor thought that i was calling from american and americans love burgers.

At the end of the day, I checked out the university webpage and traced domain for email. I reckon i've got the right email address because the email does not bounce back.

Personal Branding

I've just came across an article 'The Rise of Personal Branding'. According to the article, Linkedin is one of the sites that allows users to build their personal profile. Personally, i created an account not long ago. I read some of the profiles of several users who put in all their job descriptions of their current and past jobs. No  doubt, Linkein provides some job opportunities indirectly if someone finds that your job experience matches their requirement. 

I think twice when I wanted to cut and paste my updated CV into my Linkein. The reason behind is I don't want my immediate boss or colleagues to find out that 'Oh...she's looking for job'. I don't think i'm desperate to leave my job at this moment or I need personal branding so urgently. 

Anyway, is personal branding necessary? I reckon to a certain extend, we need personal branding. Recruitment agents like Jobstreet and Monster allow on recruiters and headhunters to  tap into Jobstreet and Monster database to peep for potential candidate profiles. The advantage of Jobstreet and Monster is only recruiters ( i reckon they pay a big sum to Jobstreet & MOnster) are given the approval or rights to view candidate profiles. 

In the midst of economic crisis, I'm thankful that I have a job with stable income everymonth. Despite the fact that there are rumours here and there every now and then, I put my hope in the Lord Jesus and I know He's with me whenever He wants me to go.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Flu bug

Whenever I get sick, i'm very afraid that my germs will pass to Tengku Mahkota since we share the same room. I've been constantly praying that my flu will not pass to him. I make sure I cover my mouth with the hanky when I sleep every night. I remind him to take Vitamin C pills.

He saw me with blocked nose and cough yesterday, he suggested that I went to see doc and get an MC. 'Just stay home for two days to rest, allow the body to recover' he said. I don't think it's a good idea to stay home as well, i'm afraid to pass the germs to Kapitan and Permaisuri Yap as well. If i stay home, Permaisuri Yap has to cook for me. The same thing happens few years back, when i used to rent a room in Puchong. I stayed in my cubie to rest and enjoy the air con when i was sick, i didn't want to spread the germs to my landlady's children. Thank God my cubie-mate, he's healthy and strong. He has never caught my bug before from me. i consider him as my best cubie-mate since i started working.

It's the flu season and some colleagues are sick too in the office. Germs are flying around. What can I do? I bring sandwiches to work for lunch, I don't plan to pass my germs to my lunch gang.

*another colleague blowing her nose as she walked past my cubie*

Today, i pray that God grant me His healing hands that I can recover soon and pray that I won't pass the germs to the people surrounding me. Pray for strength as i overcome the discomfort that I have. In jesus's name i ask and pray, Amen!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

What's the best gift from my late papa?

I'm the kind of person like to reminiscing old days. My late papa has left me when I was doing my final year. Prior to his death, the last time i saw him and talked to him was 2 months before he left. Yes, i miss him dearly whenever lil things in my life relates to him. I remember I dreamt of him a number of times and I got up with a wet pillow. This happened again 2 weeks back, I dreamt of him again and i cried so badly calling 'papa....papa'. Of course, my bedmate got a shocked. He shared his loving arms with me and woke me up. He said 'Fern... Fern... It's just a dream. It's ok.' I can't remember the dream now but i remember sharing the dream with him immediately I got up.

Yes, i used to be papa's gal. My papa retired when  i was secondary two. Since then, he fetched me from school every day and he was my driver to send me to tuition center every afternoon. Most of my tuition time is around 4pm and i had to wake him up from his nap around 3.15pm. I felt pretty bad because I knew that he almost dozed off then. No matter what, he sent me to tuition center without complaints. I would say he's pretty punctual when it comes to fetching his daughter, other matters like wedding dinner and family dinner, he used to be late all the time. That's why he called me 'Boss' because he said he made sure he's punctual to pick me home. Also, I used to sit behind the passenger seat, because I just don't like to buckle up. He used to feed me with Conneto ice cream whenever I'm hungry before reaching home. In fact my late papa is a friendly person, some of my closed friends know my papa quite well because he used to give them a lift and drive us to places we want to visit sometimes. He also joked with them and teased them once a while.

back to the subject, I reckon the best gift he has given me...there are two. One is the education and the attitude. He believed the best gift to give to your next generation is education. To him, education opens the door for the children, to allow them to get their first job, entering the career world. That's the reason he never stopped me from further my studies or choosing the course for me to study. 'Don't have to get As, just pass will do'. That's his advice all the time. Indeed, that's one of the best gifts that he has given me. Another gift is his attitude. His friends in turtle island recognise me as 'Mr Ko's daughter'. Yup, I look like him, in terms of features. Mrs Ko used to comment that my finger nails and toe nails look exactly like him as well. But but but, i'm a woman. I was taught to spend wisely and have strong determination. Since my papa worked hard since he left school after primary school, he worked hard for the family. He went thru hardtimes to build the family business. He had strong determination when he worked. Yes, when I decide to work on something, i go all out for it. That's from his genes. 

I reckon my papa has made an impact in my life that I remember him and miss him from time to time. I'm very grateful to have such a father in my life. 

A lil under the weather

Having a bad cold yeah?

Yea yea yea..very bad cold.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Why? Why?

The traffic has been very bad since the school re-opened on Monday. I was sharing with Tengku Mahkota this morning, 'Why the traffic is so bad?' He gets up around quarter to 6am everyday and I get up after he's done. We leave the house by 6.15am. 

But, the question is why the traffic is bad at 6.30am in the morning? Is everyone getting earlier and earlier? The entire highway is jam and how long the government need to take to fix the road? They are taking ages to fix the road. Even Mrs Ko noticed that when she came end of 2008. She came to KL for our wedding in May 2008, and her last trip in December 2008, the
 road has not been fixed yet. What's going on?
Since everyone is getting earlier, i'm sure that's certain time in the morning, the traffic is slightly better. Hence, Tengku Mahkota suggested that he takes half day and observe the traffic in the morning. What a joke!

Anyway, I think i still my 1st job, whereby i get up at 7.30am in the morning and drive to work at 8am. I reach the office by 8.20am. Smooth traffic from my rented room to office. Enjoy my breakfast in the office and start working. 

I pray the traffic in KL will improve. 

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Blessed new year

Tengku Mahkota and I had 10 day breaks from christmas till new year. We didn't do much except sleeping and eating. Now, i'm pretty convinced that I've put on weight after jumping onto the weighing scale. So, i'm working hard to lose some weight and get back to my preferred weight.

On the Christmas day, I led the worship in church and I found out that I chose the wrong song 'We're the reason', not because of the song, but the pitch is way tooooo high and I requested the entire worship team to back me up. After church, we came home andi helped Permaisuri Yap to cook and prepare the Christmas dinner. To be more precise, the Asian Christmas dinner, unlike in overseas we have turkeys and more western food. Over here, we had fried bee hoon, the roasted ducks were good and others.

Then we had prize giving for the yap family golf contest. Tengku Mahkota won some Tesco Vouchers and me, being the non-golfer, I was qualified for the lucky draw. Before Christmas day, i've told Permaisuri Yap that I want Jacob. Finally, my name was called when i was busy doing the washing in the kitchen. I was given Jacob, Sunquick, oats and tea bags. I've got more than I wanted, thank god for that.

After the Christmas, we made a short tip to Singapore with Mrs Ko. We spent time with my 3rd uncle's family in Singapore, visiting my cousins' places and went around to fill our tummy. We went in and out restaurant for lunch and dinner. This contributes to my extra weight that I earned from my trip. The hakka dinner was fantastic with the yam paste dessert. I love it. Not only that, Uncle Yeao and Aunty Diana brought us to have cantonese dinner. Tengku Mahkota who does not like to eat crab, now he has turned out to be COLD crab lover. For me, I enjoyed the fish skin dug into the soup. The dinner was good  and we managed to catch up a bit. Before we left, Tengku Mahkota was shocked to find out that 5 ppl consumed 2 bottle of wine over the dinner. 

Now, I'm back to work. Taking a slow start and staying close to God. continue to seek His will in this new year and praying for direction especially for my career.