Wednesday, January 30, 2008


I love long holidays. It helps me to appreciate life as a student. Plenty of time to hang out with good friends, eat good food and watch TV. Never felt so free in my whole life! But in the working world, everything changes. LONG office hours. Work to take back home. Financial responsibility. Life is peachy when you're a kid. Everything is taken care of by parents. All you have to do is study and play hard. That's why some kids say, 'I don't want to grow up!' But that's a rhetorical statement; you'll grow up anyway, unless you behave like a kid trapped in a 23-year old body.

Last saturday and sunday was really fun. Went to my cousin's wedding in Keningau. Got to meet my mother's brothers and sisters, and my cousins. Couldn't talk to all of them, especially those who can't speak English. But I love moments like these; it's a different feeling compared to being with friends, because you're part of an extended family. The bonding feels stronger. That's why family relationships are so intense. Family can really break you down or build you up. There are some friends whom you can forget. But the family remains with you until they or you pass away.

On the way back from Keningau, Uncle Steven drove down a slope on a road nicknamed the 'Mysterious Beyond'. To experience the mystery, Uncle Steven stopped the car. The car started rolling up the slope, instead of down. Uncle Steven continued driving down the slope and stopped again. The same thing happened. So weird! He parked the car in a clearing by the roadside and we got down to check what kind of mysterious magnetic force was pulling the car upwards. When we got to the road, we realised it was an optical illusion. We were actually driving up the slope, instead of the opposite. We thought it was going down at first because the surroundings gave us that impression, especially the hill in front of us.

Uncle Steven and family are leaving for Adelaide this friday. They're going to meet up with Jimmy, who's graduated and earning lots of money. 3.5 weeks left before I return to Adelaide. I feel like a kid that says, "I don't want to go back. I want to enjoy life like this forever". But the grownup in me says, "Save that for retirement man. And for the next life".

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

My Birthday

14 Jan. 23 years old. Received a birthday song made by Ivy and Ben. Was so happy! It had a rap part, a hymn followed by the traditional birthday song. 5 stars! This will be my favourite song for the whole week!

I went with Ignatius to our old school.

Met a few old teachers. Not many of them left. Graduated from this school for 6 years now. Class mates are all over the world.

Cikgu Sylvester said our class was the best he ever taught. Of course man! The former principal's son was there!

At night I celebrated with family and favourite relatives at a Tanjung Aru restaurant. Got to eat shark fin soup! As far as I know, only Sabah has real shark fin soup that's not made of crab sticks (like the one in Hong Kong).

Was a memorable day =)

It's all about money...

'The root of all evil'. Money is not evil, but bad management is. Last year I learnt how lack of documentation can lead to big bills with no reason. I asked the person responsible to show documentation, which he agreed to, but never did. So I didn't pay. The person complained to another person that I owed money, and mom was called. Overall, it was a messy situation. Not only were the bills dodgy, the papers 'justifying' it were red. Invoices stating overdue payments, and penalty charges added. The person has been keeping those papers, not telling us until one day we see a massive bill. If we had been informed beforehand, we would pay our share and there would be no red papers because that person was unable to pay everything.

So my  2008 resolution is, financial accountability. To inform people about how much they have to pay. None of this owing business. I can treat you lunch, but no way I'm paying your rent, utility bills, or home loan. That's my principle. Financial mismanagement can turn friends into enemies and family members against each other. My mom knows too well, she is an accountant. She was hired for two years to chase people with bad debts. And before you try to help someone in financial difficulty, you have to find out the root cause. It could be financial mismanagement. You could be conned. And you will never see your hard earned money again.    

Friends, do not allow someone to ask for a large sum of money. He/ she might say, "I can't feed my kids, I am homeless" but they might be excuses. They should ask a bank for help, which is not you. Even if you ask for proof, they can easily give you false documentation. If they call you selfish, they are  irresponsible because nobody should ask his/her friends for a handout. It's unfair; you work so hard for it, and they expect you to give it away.

Charities are a different story, but some people will use any outlet to lie, cheat and steal from others. So in the words of Jesus, 'Be vigilant!' Not only for the second coming, but also for your money.

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