Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Silver Strands


Nostril Hair
Swiped from numlok™.
White hair~ the mark of maturity? Wisdom? Stressed out? Age? Too much brain usage? Sexiness ala Richard Gere? My brother had his fair share since he was in Form Six. Can't help it since he was a computer freak since his teenage years. Can you believe he actually read source code in his free time? :S. I, on the other hand do not have a single strand of white hair on my head yet. However, I do have white nostril hair! TMI? Huhu. I wonder what that signifies?

Monday, November 29, 2010

Vit. C Fix

Nearly everyday I'd eat an orange. BND0.50 per fruit. Usually sour, but I don't mind. Every time I cut it, my colleague would know as the sourness would permeate across the living room. Out of politeness I would offer him a piece, but he never accepted. I thought it was just about the taste, but then I found out that it was also about the sound! Some people just bite into a slice and eat some of the pulp, suck out the juices. On the other hand, I usually rip the flesh off the skin. Turns out that my roommate is averse to this sound! To him, unpeeling a pomelo has the same effect as running one's spiked cock ring across a blackboard! He immediately hugged himself and jumped off the couch. Such a major response. LOL.

What's your 'favourite' sound? :D

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Con-sultants

My client hired a well-known consultancy to manage the project. They are afraid that we might con them, hence they are there to keep tabs on things. Highly-paid to arrange meetings, help users note down problems, push things through and make sure everyone's life is difficult. So professional, forever asking about required timelines and documents. And yet, schedule clashes happen! My six day session got chopped down to six afternoon sessions just because some idiot overlooked it. And so, my time is wasted and we have to rush things. Plus, my users are pissed and I have to extend my stay. Ugh. Consultants.

Friday, November 26, 2010

十面埋伏

This has been a turbulent fourth quarter. One would think that things would slow down when nearing the end of the year with vacations and holidays on everyone's minds. But the inverse seems to be happening. Work has been a bitch with things blowing up here and there. And one hundred and one clashes. The follow up with the legal issues for my late dad's estate suddenly cropped up. And with me in Brunei, worrying about mum at home. But I worry about SK the most, as she seems to be fighting several fronts at once. Hope she gets a break soon. Can only do so much over here. Sending all my love and prayers.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Stuff Your Pie Hole

When there's nothing to do, one tends to stuff things in the mouth (not talking about dick here, but I guess it's a valid angle too). For me, it has been oranges, apples, raisins, dried guava and other more unhealthy varieties like Lays potato chips and Kosuka tapioca chips. Sometimes I'd buy yoghurt too. But this is just a far cry from my colleagues who just live across the hall. To date, both of them have consumed nine tubes of Pringles, four packets of Ruffles and eight cup noodles! All in just two weeks. I salute them. If I ate that much of salt and MSG-laden food, my throat would have surrendered in just a couple of days.

Any personal junk food records to share?

Note: An ex-colleague of mine once shared that he could down two large pizza in one sitting or one large bucket of KFC. Don't worry, he has slimmed down now.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Cowboy Town

I arrived at Bandar Seri Begawan on the 31st of October. My return ticket is for the 2nd of December. A social visit pass to Brunei is only thirty days. So if I follow that itinerary, I would most probably be hauled up for violating immigration laws. Don't pray pray. Criminals here can't even get away with stealing a refrigerator. So, my fatty boss drove a bunch of us up to Kuala Lurah (outskirt of Limbang) to extend my stay and have dinner. Just a thirty minute drive. The Brunei immigration is quite unorganized in general. The officer just takes your passport and stamps it without looking at your face. For arrivals and departures, you stick your passport into the same window at the side of a shipping container. Amazing. On the Malaysian side, the CIQ Complex is much more decent. We parked on the Brunei side and walked across the border. The roads were riddled with potholes and unlit. Horrible. Just out of the CIQ, one is presented with a Sugar Bun outlet and a whole bunch of restaurants crammed together. Imagine rickety wooden tables covered with plastic sheets. Suspicious characters chatting the night away with beers in hand. Definitely a seedy place. Smoke hangs in the air from the all the ciggies and BBQ. My colleague chose a stall with the best looking waitresses. :S.

Between the seven of us, we had stir-fried paku-pakis in belacan, stir-fried midin, grilled sole fish, grilled stingray, stewed porpoise (they took it out of the fridge and didn't properly reheat it!), fried calamri, five-spice pork ribs and BBQ chicken wings. Washed it all down with Carlsberg (was a bit high after two small bottles). Having spent years in Manila, my colleague loves to flirt with the girls:

"What's your name?"

"Umang."

"What does that mean? Lobster?"


And having noticed her red panties poking out from her hotpants, he continued:

"You like the colour red?"

Umang immediately got the clue and hiked her pants up. Straight guys. Yare yare. The total bill came up to roughly BND100. Yes, that MALAYSIAN town charges in Brunei Ringgit. Then we went on to buy some liqour at the duty free shop. More varieties than at the airports. Sigh. Borrowed some guy's passport to make the purchases. Apparently the rule is two bottle per person. No mention of the volume. And so, my oh-so-clever colleagues used up their quota to purchase mini Absolut Vodkas. Really no comment. So, I was actually back on Malaysian soil for a couple of hours. But I'm back in BSB now!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Breakfast of Kings

The chef at my hotel is really a genius. Seri Anjung: Rasa Malaysia definitely deserves some Michelin stars. The quality has been very consistent. One bite of the fried noodles or kuay teow is usually enough for me to spit it out. Superbly sweet. Plus the noodles are usually not properly cooked. Terrific. I've seen a regular try to neutralize the sweetness by dumping salt on it. Hah! Another colleague of mine uses chilli sauce. Such attempts remind me of trying to cover B.O. with the perfume. Lagi hapak! Sometimes breakfast is served with a starchy egg drop soup. Never dared try that. Snot in the morning. Eww. The fried rice is more decent, but the MSG in there has a wonderfully stinging sensation. The only edible thing they serve is the white porridge. Wonderfully hot and bland. Haha. But not all are misses. The chef did once whip up a nice macaroni in beef and clove broth. And the french toast is OK too. But that's just once in a blue moon when he slips up. Now you know why oats and eggs sounds like such a good thing to me over here. :D. Free tu makan je lah kan?

P.S.: The chef screwed up again today! I actually had seconds of the fried noodles!

Monday, November 22, 2010

HBO Served Here

HBO is lovely. To date, I have watched "Troy" five times, "G.I. Joe" three times, "Star Trek" six times and "Dark Knight" twice. Reruns. The essence of pay TV. Yum Yum Yum. Ooohh... time to catch "Watchmen" for the second time!

Pick you jaw up from floor. I just leave the TV on and listen from my room while I'm online. Hehe. Anyway, any movie that you can watch over and over again? Please don't say "Titanic". I beg you.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Bedtime Stories

Zzz... snrk... zzzzz... snrkkk!! Yes, my roommate snores. He goes from zero to snoring in 30 seconds. That's quite something, right? (actually KH also holds a similar record) Honestly, snorers don't bother me. Somehow I manage to filter out the sound. Even so, I am grateful that KH does not snore. I don't think I snore either, but I do know that I used to talk in my sleep. Would sometimes sit up in bed and mumble something unintelligible and then shut up. Years back, I had a roommate who did the same thing. One night it would be me. On another night, it would be him. I really wonder if I mumbled out any secrets at those times~~

"mumble.. I masturbated on your bed this afternoon... mumble"

My mother on the other hand, grits her teeth. And it's quite loud! Not good for the teeth le. Well, back to my roommate. His snoring is actually quite useful. Whenever I hear his snoring, I would know that the coast is clear to do some skanky business under the sheets! :D

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Food Options

Although there are quite a number of shops selling decent food near my hotel, my roommate and I still narrow our choice down to two. People are always like that. Less choices, they complain. Too many choices, they cannot decide. So for me, it's always either Sui Heng or Golden Leaf. Why? I guess it's the price and taste. It's the only two shops selling decent Chinese mixed rice. And the letter even has roasted items like pork ribs and duck. I think the waitresses at both shops come to expect seeing us there. Not surprised if this is what they whisper under their breath:

"Here comes the cilaka migrant worker who only take the BND3.00 mixed rice and drink warm water"

They don't even bother to ask us anymore these days. Haha. At least over here, fish is counted the same like any other meat. In KL...

"Fish ma, sure more expensive!"

Do you have a regular shop that you go to?

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Thien Thien Sienz


Thien Thien
Swiped from williamnyk.
Out of boredom, we arranged a free shuttle service to The Mall, Gadong on Saturday. Turns out that the hotel I'm staying in is managed by a huge real estate group that also owns The Mall and a string of other properties around town. Hence the free ride. My roommate and I were chauffered over in a cool black MPV with automatic doors. Didn't manage to catch the make and model though. The Mall is quite big really, but the location really leaves a lot to be desired. Located just beside the highway, but the exit is a giant roundabout that is really difficult for Bruneian drivers as they are really not gung-ho enough on the road. And you know what? To get into the shopping mall, one has to go through a small road that snakes around the Pasar Gadong (a food haven for all things cheap and loaded with hydrocarbons). To cut a long story short, we finished The Mall in just under forty five minutes. Arguably better retail space than in Yayasan, but still a far cry from being labeled decent. They do have Secret Recipe, Aussino, Guess, a Mac reseller and Giardano, but that's about it. The rest are Berjaya Times Square material interspersed with keripik and tudung stalls. Precious.

For lunch, we walked out and found a Thien Thien chicken rice branch there (turns out that there is a branch near my hotel too -_-"). Supposedly famous, but judging by the crowd, it should be. Their famous dish is steamed chicken rice. The meat has a good texture and actually has the taste of chicken (unlike those tasteless antibiotic and feed-gorged variety we usually get). Having nothing to do and our laptops heavy on our backs, we went to Coffee Bean. A cup of Today's Brew costs BND3.40. Much more expensive than back home. Ouch. Just sat there and surfed the net a bit. But I do plenty of that back home anyway. The only consolation was that I got to ogle at two twinks who ate at the dim sum restaurant nearby. Our driver arrived at 2:00pm to rescue us from that boring place... My weekends are pathetic! Mushrooming... mushrooming mushrooming...

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Sapna


Rishi
Swiped from Motohashimarabia.
Truth be told, I have never opened my palette to guys of Indian descent before. In the early days of 1515 dial-up, I had a thing for Caucasians. Then that shifte to Jap, Chink and more Jap. Well, I have oogled at some hot specimens like Rishi Idnani, but that's about it. And so, it came as a surprise to me when I had a skanky dream about an Indian dude. One of those elaborate dreams where I was skulking in the underground HQ of a cult (no idea if it was a sado-masochstic gay cult, but a cult lo). I raced from chamber to chamber, avoiding detection (more Austin Powers than James Bond slick). But in the end, I was discovered by an Indian lab assistant. I dunno what he was doing there, but for all I know he was devising some evil cult lubricant. He caught my wrist and the next thing I know, I had pulled him close and started kissing him (heroes should always use this move to throw enemies off guard). The scene kinda blurred from there. Falling behind through many walls while the hands were getting busy. Think of it like a fast-forward David Copperfield Great Wall of China feat married with a soft porn scene. Told KH about this dream and he surprised me by saying that he had a premonition that I would have a skanky dream that night. Amazing. Perhaps it was KH in disguise. Haha. Man, too horny in BSB...

Gorby

In my previous post, I mentioned that there were two semi-cuties in my Brunei office. Both are on the opposite spectrum. One medium build. The other small build. One goody-goody. The other bad boy. One hardly smiles. The other has a cheeky grin. One has a long fringe. The other has a ruffled, James Dean look. But today, lets focus on candidate #1, Mr. Goody. Both have skin as white as snow. So, when Mr. Goody has a mark on his neck, it defintely catches the eye. Even my straight colleague noticed:

"Wei, is that fella sporting a lovebite?"

But the truth of the matter is, it's a perpetual lovebite. Day One~ Still there. Day Two~ Still. Day Three~ Still there. Conclusion? Birthmark lo... Haha. Sorry la, no pics. Use your imagination, k? Wakakaka.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Life Is Never Easi


moses
Swiped from fee_rachel.
It took a little more than a week to purchase a prepaid sim card starter pack in BSB. In particular, I was looking for Brunei's 'most saleable' prepaid sim card, i.e Easi by DTSCom. In the city center, I went from kiosk to kiosk, shop to shop, but nobody seemeds to sell it. If you want the reload card, they got plenty. Reminds me of Alanis Morisette's lyrics~ "ten thousand spoons when all you need is a fork...". I was nearly giving up, but then I found that there was a DSTCom branch just beneath my balls, at the nearby Yayasan. After lunch, I dashed over and made my purchase. Was thrilled that it took only ten minutes plus registration. FYI, it cost me BND30 for the starter pack with only BND5 credit inside. Unlike in Malaysia, Bruneians get a raw deal with prepaid. BND5 lasts you only 7 days. And each call you pick up is charged BND0.20. My favourite is the fact that if you don't reload the card, your credit will be forfeited in percentages according to the duration. Within a fortnight, one stands to lose 50% of unused credit. And the line dies if you don't reload it for 30 days. Pitiful. But beggars can't be choosy. It pays to hear your boyfriends voice over the phone when you're trapped in a faraway country. And I could also tell that KH sounded downtrodden each time I told him I failed to secure a local line. But in that period, I still had the alternative of sticking my face to the office window trying to steal DiGi coverage from the border towns. Now the only thing left is to find some privacy for some a phone-skank session. Hehehehehe.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Malaysian Hospitality


che
Swiped from ewilman.
FYI, this is something that happened ages ago. Around three years ago, when I first started dating KH. Don't think I've ever blogged about this (but if I did, then just blame my aging brain). Found nothing after searching through my 1000+ posts. Being based at the Masjid Jamek area, I would sometimes venture down to the KLCC area to have lunch with the Jaylex Foundation, EarlGrey and Leggy. Maklumlah, long lunch break on Fridays. Well, nothing special about that, just that my trip back to the office was quite out of the ordinary. As I was waiting for the PUTRA LRT to arrive at Ampang Park, I spotted two tourists. One tall and a bit chubby, while the other was short and cheeky (lets call 'em Chubby and Cheeky). In their 30s I think. Cheeky had a straw hat on his head. I looked at them. They looked at me. The difference was, Cheeky gave me a big grin. I pretended not to see. We boarded the same, mostly empty train car. Standing by the door, I held onto the stainless steel pole. Chubby and Cheeky approached me. From their conversation I could tell that they were Thai.

Being the braver one, Cheeky struck up a conversation with me. He too held onto the pole. No problem with that except that, he purposely inched his hand towards mine and used his pinky to tickle my hand. I stared at the fella and give him a big smile and shook my head. Chubby was smiling too, and used hand gestures to tell me to punch his buddy. I let go of my hand and started texting KH about the 'forward' tourist. As luck would have it, the train lurched a bit and I kinda lost my balance. Cheeky tried to take a peek at what I was typing. He thought it was a message for him. Masyallah. In no time, I had reached my stop, and I left the two behind. What do you think? Do you think that I showed enough Malaysian Hospitality? I don't think I would have the guts to do what he did in a foreign country. And the question arises... do I look THAT gay in office clothes? Cannot be!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

BSB Revisited IV: Lucky Restaurant

Lucky Restaurant is a typical Chinese restaurant in Bandar Seri Begawan. Downstairs is catered for exress meals where rice is served with roasted meats and upstairs, one gets air-conditioning and enough space to hold a wedding banquet. There's of course a stage flanked by very traditional wood carvings of a dragon and a phoenix. In KL, you'd most probably only see a cheap styrofoam representation. The prices there are quite fair, not costing more than the other coffee shops nearby. So in a way, it's more value for money. The waitresses even dress up like SQ air stewardesses (but looks wise, more like retired air stewardess la). Huhu. But the only thing 'lucky' about the place is the name. No cute waiters or kitchen staff for me to ogle at. Sigh. At least the lala kids at the Laksamana College of Business provide some respite. Food-wise, Lucky Restaurant serves up quite a big portion. Quite tasty too. So far I had tasted their beef kuay teow and Singapore bihun. The beef kuay teow was done 'wet style' and comparable to those back home. The beef was tender and the gravy had the right consistency. However, the bihun was a bit off, with turmeric taking center stage. Kinda like something from the mamak stall. And I must say that I still have not tasted a decent char siew over here. So that dish did not score high in my book. But still, a decent meal.

But........ my roommate wasn't so lucky. He had a rough night. Something wasn't right. He vomitted the next morning.... I had quite a hard time evading the questions from my clients regarding what he ate... They wanted to know which restaurant to avoid. But it's actually zero risk to them since I don't think they eat braised pork ribs anyway. Haha.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Cubicle With A View

This is the view that greats me whenever I use the toilet cubicle on the 10th floor of my client's office... quite a view isn't it? Thank goodness there are no higher buildings nearby, else the mid length window would be quite a spectacular view for the neighbours. Tee hee. As you can see, I have aged the photo, but the buildings don't look out of place at all kan? Welcome to the Twilight Zone!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

LRT Celebrities: Karaoke Kyaw

See the guy on the left? With the earphones? Not cute, right? Well, the reason I noticed was due to his beautiful voice. There I was in the train fiddling with my iPhone when I heard a very weird sound from the other side of the train. Sounded very much like a kid whining. I looked left. I looked right. (not trying to cross the street la). Yet I did not see any kids. Ignore it. Then the strange whining started again. Huh? The train was only half-full, but still I could not find the source of the sound. Then I looked straight ahead. Karaoke Kyaw was happily mumbling along to the song he was listening too. Myanmarese was my first guess. Pretty amazing, not much lip movement and he could throw his voice to one side of the train!

Do you ever put on your earphones in your office and start singing? My ex-colleague used to do it and boy it was quite a spectacle. A quiet office atmosphere suddenly punctuated with very jiwang (inspired by Savante) and off-key singing. Everyone would look over and the dear 'performer' would be oblivious to the attention. Usually, we could look at each other knowingly and smile. Then get back to work.

BACK TO WORK!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Bah-bah Black Sheep

If you can speak Malay, you should be able to surive in Brunei. It's pretty much the same breed of language, with certain exceptions. The first thing I noticed was their fondness for the word "bah". Kinda like the equivalent of our "lah", except infinitely more flexible. It fits most situations. Can use it to agree, get attention, and even prohibit. And they "kita" instead of "awak" as a sign on respect. Confusing kan? Then you have your "ngak payah" and "ngak buleh" that somehow just rolls off the tongue with a funny melody to it. Quite fun to use. And instead of "tidak", they use "inda". Then they have a whole lot of "Dayangku"s and "Awangku"s floating around... people with royal lineage. On top of this, I just found out that when Bruneians say "belayar", they actually mean going on a trip. :S.

"OK bah!!"

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

BSB Revisited III: Seek & Ye Shall Find?

Being the bad little Catholic that I am, I still try to partake in the Sunday Mass. Flying down to Brunei, I had already missed it on Sunday. Arriving in Brunei, I went to work trying to locate any nearby parishes. Seems that there is a Church of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception at Jalan Kumbang Pasang. The intersection to that road is not too far a walk from my place actually. Unfortunately, I don't know the exact location. For some reason, the church is not marked on any map in the internet. And even the church's website is down. Quite sad since it's supposed to be the main Catholic church for the Brunei diocese. Can you imagine that I even resorted to a gay cruising site to try to find it? (interesting to note that www.cruisinggays.com gave that spot 3/5 stars). In the end, I did not go. Jalan Kumbang Pasang is just too long for me to make a gung-ho church-hunting trip. Instead, I took out my camera and walked along Jalan Tutong towards the bridge over Sungai Kedeyan to take some pics. Nearly melted in the sun. And I thought Brunei had a more pleasant sun.

Lunch was KFC at the nearby Plaza Athirah. A sorry excuse for a shopping complex. I really don't know how the tenants survive. Bruneian KFC is a tad milder. Good thing was, it didn't leave a dry feeling in one's palate after the meal. They had run out of mashed potatoes due to 'overwhelming support', so we got wedges instead. And somehow, the bun tasted like it was buttered. BND6.10 for the snack plate. Since we were out, we hopped from shade to shade until we reached the nearby First Emporium. Could see a minor jam of cars outside it... I guess this is a close as they get to a weekend Midvalley Megamall shopping experience. Back in the room, i watched The Book of Eli on my laptop. HBO was still playing the Batman marathon. Overkill. I stopped at "Dark Knight". A little reading. A little lazing... the the all-important question pops up again...

"What's for dinner?"

Artisanal Fish Balls

Had fantastic fish balls at Restoran Sui Heng. Artisanal. Excellent texture. As bouncy as a twink's tight ass. No fishy taste! In a clear soup flavoured with preserved vegetables and a generous amount of leafy greens.

Monday, November 08, 2010

All the Colours of the Pee

While doing #1 in the loo of my client's office, this is what I saw on the wall with the urinals...

a Urine Colour Chart! to help the staff know their hydration levels.

I don't know about their staff, but I find comparing the colour of my pee to a printed chart, midstream no less, to be quite a challenge! Wonder if that campaign caused an increase 'missed shots'. Or perhaps...

"Romzi, come look at my pee. You think it's a band 7?"

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Bruneian Winter Sonata


DSC01067
Swiped from In a bubble.
Bruneians seem to have a love affair with air-conditioning. Everywhere I go, the temperatures seem to be super low. It's not even that hot outside (the weather can be quite pleasant even during lunch) and the AC is on full blast. One shivers when walking out to the lift lobby. While waiting for my mutton briyani to be served, I warm my hands with a cup of hot water. In my hotel room, even a low setting on the thermostat gets me shivering under the covers (hmmm, thinking of KH's warm body cuddling me). Thank goodness I brought my cardigan along. At the supermarket, even the aisles are chilly. I don't even need to elaborate about the frozen section. Gritting my teeth seems to be something I keep on doing subconsciously here. But perhaps that has a bit to do with work and boredom. Heh. Are Bruneians really that 'warm'? (the cute boys should go green and wear less clothes!). Or is electricity free over here? I shall endeavour to find the answer!

Saturday, November 06, 2010

BSB Revisited II: Lost My Train of Thought


Central Park
Swiped from williamnyk.
Slept quite well on my first night in Brunei, but for some reason missed KH more than usual. Must be the fact that I did not get to hear his voice over the phone. Sigh. Whispered his name to sleep while I imagined that he snuggled beside me under the sheets, keeping me warm. Had weird dreams about running around a German castle and having Japanese food. Bizarre. Woke up the next day feeling the effects of the air-conditioning. Pity my throat and my skin. Have to lather myself with rich body creams and not scrimp on my facial moisturiser. Breakfast was the usual lousy fare. On Monday, the requirements study session with my client started. Had to 'persuade' my colleague to do his job. I wonder which part of Business Analyst he does not understand. But once the ball got rolling, things were better. Thanks goodness the audience was reasonable and not too demanding.

Golden Leaf

The days have kinda rolled by and I've lost track of time, so I won't be giving a day by day account. It'll be very dry material anyway. I'm sure you wouldn't appreciate it. Kinda annoyed that Brunei gives me daily bad hair days. Nearly every morning my hair would be a mess. Going the wrong way and lacking volume. :(. The cheapest thing to eat here is apparently nasi katok for just BND1.00. However, I have not tried it. Chinese mixed rice with two vegetables and one meat (fish included) costs BND3.00. Haven't splurged on anything yet. Was supposed to spend BND30.00 on a DSTCom Easi prepaid sim pack, but can you believe that I have failed to find it till today? Everyone sells the reload cards, but not the starter pack. Preposterous.

To get my bearings, perhaps I'll just blog about the meals I will have in the following days. :D. But I always do that don't I?

Friday, November 05, 2010

Getting Wet in the Shower

Haiyoh.... my roommate does not know how to use the shower curtain. The bathroom floods after he showers! Doesn't he notice that? It doesn't take a rocket scientist to realize that the water is flowing onto the floor and not into the bathtub! Please help!

But wait... don't tell me he has fun all over the place and needs to spray off the whole place to clean up?! Yikes!

Thursday, November 04, 2010

BSB Revisited I: I'd Still Rather Watch Cum Dry

Woke up at 7:30am and did some last minute packing before SK fetched me to the airport. At the LCCT, I looked at the departure board and found my flight AK266 - KSK. What the hell's "KSK"?! Went to ask at the information counter. Turns out that it means "Self Check-In Kiosk". So off I went in search of the kiosk. And what do I see there? Several lines of frustrated passengers trying to check-in. Either the booking could not be found or the machine did not have paper to print out the boarding pass. Perfect. A chinese woman was asking the customer service about the problem, so I in turn asked her about her findings.

"You from XYZ company?"

Wah, I must have tattoo-ed on my forehead or something. But then, it's not everyday that you have a bunch of typical cheenas going to Bandar Seri Begawan. So off we went to the other cluster or machines. Also hopeless. We ended checking in at the baggage drop-off counter. The only benefit of the kiosk is if you do not have any baggage, else you will still need to line up at the counter. And if you really have no bags, might as well use the web check-in than be at the mercy of their stupid hardware.

After checking in, I had a MYR9.90 cup of long black (I'd rather drink at CBTL) at Theobroma Chocolate Lounge with SK. Horribly messy. The tables were full of crumbs and the floor was filthy. I think McD's cleaner. My journey through immigration and security was very quick. Boarded at the scheduled time. It was a very full flight. Luckily my company's ticket procurement lady bought us the package with the hot seat. Only an extra MYR12, inclusive of 15kg baggage and meal. My parent company on the other hand, chooses to force their employees to pay for the baggage and claim it back later at the cost of MYR60. I don't know what kind of psychotic policy that is. Trying to make more money for Air Asia and create more workload for the accounts department. Insane.

Slept through most of the flight. During my waking hours, I ate Air Asia's nasi lemak and fiddled with "Plants vs Zombies". The flight was pleasant. Just a little turbulence at the start. And during take off, a stowage vibrated so badly that it sounded it was going to break off. But you know what? A ceiling cover near the front did fall off when we taxied at the terminal, revealing a whole bunch of tubing and wiring. I half expected to see pirated DVDs or blocks of cocaine falling out of the gaping hole. Once again, I'll be staying at the same hotel on Jalan Tutong. Unfortunately, the department store right beside it closed down for renovations, so we have to walk further for our grocery shopping. :(. Dinner was at Sui Heng. Chose to have some mixed rice. The cheapest on the menu. Have to ration myself to BND10 a day for food! Ate with some juniors. Got a couple of semi-cuties amongst them. Huhu.

Back at the room, I ironed my clothes and surfed the net. Unfortunately, my iPhone can no longer connect to the network. The hotel's IT is of the opinion that Apple products are a big bandwidth hogger. Alamak. This time, I'm staying in a suite with two rooms and a kitchenette. Perhaps I'll cook during the weekends. At least that way I can limit my consumtption of premium Bruneian MSG to just 5 days a week.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Clean Out Your Mouth!

You guys remember the toothbrush from my previous post? Well, that's just one of the many old tootbrushes I have in my bathroom. Once the bristles become too exhausted, I retire the toothbrush and give it a new life scrubbing stubborn stains from my sink. I put it all on the lower tier of the rack hanging on the wall. On the top tier, I have my current toothbrush and other body products. Why do I mention this? To know why, we'll have to rewind back to my trip back to KL from Singapore last month. I was super blur from the delayed flight. And while I was brushing my teeth, I was doing some deep thinking. So things kinda went on auto-pilot.

"Hmmm... how come my toothbrush so soft geh...? Spoil already?"

Then it hit me like a tonne of bricks. I had brushed using an old, dirty toothbrush! GOODNESS! I immediately rinsed my mouth over and over and over again. Then I proceeded to brush my teeth with lots of toothpaste.

"Aiyoh... God knows how many germs colonies I had ingested already. Too late."

I just went back to sleep ignoring that disgusting blunder. Well, at least it wasn't a toilet brush. I must have been fibbing too much of late. :D

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Tarnish

Here's a silver cleaning challenge not unlike those between different brands of laundry detergents. At the Brand X corner, we have the buah lerak that I smuggled in from Jogjakarta. At the Brand Y corner is a chemical cleanser that I bought from a silver shop in Endah Parade. I put both to the test. With the buah lerak, I just need to peel off a little bit of the skin and wet it. Then I brushed the exposed flesh with a toothbrush. Magically, bubbles start to appear. The bubbles were used to clean my tarnished silver ring. No unpleasant smell, but the cleaning power was not that strong, leaving some heavily oxidized spots behind. To complete the challenge, I dipped the ring into the black chemical solution for ten seconds. Definitely smelled of acid! After the time was up, I dumped the ring into some soap solution and brushed the ring. At the end, I ran it through clean water and polished it with a special microfibre cloth. The chemical did a great job, but my skin suffered. Not giving up on the buah lerak, I tried it on my mother's pendant and it worked well! In conclusion, it's not a heavy duty cleanser, but it does do the job well and in a natural manner. The buah lerak is just dried after use and can kept for a long, long time.... Not bad huh? Perhaps I'll try to plant it after I've exhausted its flesh. So, convinced with Brand X? Too bad its not available on the local market.

Monday, November 01, 2010

Burn The Midnight Oil & Burn Yourself

Sleep is very important. Our battery is recharged during that period. With quality sleep, we emerge the next day refreshed and ready to face whatever shit the day has in store for us. Sometimes (OK la, most of the time), I will doze on the LRT to catch up on a little more rest. Even if I can't fall asleep, I would rest my eyes. Last Friday, I was awakened from my short nap by a thud. Macam jatuhnya sebii nangka busuk. An African student had collapsed like a log onto the floor. Just that nobody yelled "Timber!". As with all unexpected situations, the other passengers were shocked at what to do at first, but they jumped into action fairly quickly. A space was cleared for her and people started offering water and medicated oil. But she was still incoherent, shaking, crying and grunting in pain. The methyl salicilate had awakened her, so they propped her up. But as soon as they did that, she collapsed again on the seat. A Chinese auntie kept asking a Malay lady to apply pressure to the point above her lips, but the Malay lady did not really understand. As it was nearing Masjid Jamek, we decided to haul her off, but she was slipping away again. So I activated that pressure point and true enough, her eyes jolted open. With the help of several commuters, we helped her onto the platform, but she collapsed again.

A Chinese lady helped her make some calls to her friends while I went off to fetch the LRT staff. The staff were also at a lost at what to do. But I think they actually called the ambulance. When she had recovered a bit, we helped down the station to the LRT's staff lounge to wait for her friend to come. She admitted that she had not slept the night before preparing for an exam that morning. I bet she did not have a bite to eat too. She was definitely in no condition to take any exam on that day. Truth be told, is it worth it to deprive our bodies of sleep to prepare for something important the next day? Could we function well? In this case, she caused harm to her body and she ended up missing her exam altogether. Such a waste of effort. For nothing. I too should get enough rest. I read that lack of sleep raises oxytocin levels which in turn makes us fat!!! Noooooooo..... Sleep earlier, sleep earlier, sleep earlier...