Wednesday, June 29, 2016

My brother's wedding

My brother got married last week and I was so tempted to give a speech during his wedding ceremony – the most monumental milestones in his life. My intention was called off knowing that it was probably not the right place and audiences to deal with and here I ended up with, a blog post dedicated to my brother Lung. Writing this post made me feel sentimental and nostalgic especially since when we were younger, those days we grew up together and at some point of time my brother was my sworn enemy in the early age.

Being the eldest son in the family, we have taken sibling rivalry to some sort of level, and our fights would once get violent. I can vividly remember bashing his head on the glass cabinet door in one occasion, simply because he has broken pieces of my Lego sets which were deemed to be precious to me at that time. Ironically, he is now with Lego group and I am ordering Lego sets from him from time to time. I still feel guilty about this until now and I would very much like to apologise on this matter. If I were to give a speech during his wedding, I doubt I would burst into tear coming to this segment of speech.

Given our bloody past, it amazes me how great we get along as adult in the later years. We have managed to keep bickering to a minimum in the last decade or so. And even though I am sure we still get on each other’s nerves occasionally, we have learned to deal with conflicts in a mature manner rather than engage in potentially hurtful and damaging confrontation, we breathe, take a step back and do the sensible thing.
My dad exclassmate reunion party in 1998
Family trip back in 2010
Gathering in Gardens, Kuala Lumpur 2011
Chinese New Year in Sekinchan 2012
Family trip in Genting Highlands, 2013
Youngest brother birthday in Midvalley, Kuala Lumpur 2014
A quick catch up in Publika, 2015

Over time, my brother has grown to be a confidant. No one can truly understand our family’s craziness better than the two of us or three of us including the youngest brother, so we have to stick together in such a big family tree.

Needless to say, I was very happy for him when he found his wife, Gacky. It is nice to see the right person who can share life with him and more importantly, it is nice to see him happy. I know he will make a loving husband and a fantastic father because he has always been a great brother, son and friend to all of us.

Thursday, January 01, 2015

My 2015 and beyond

Brand new year today and the way I decided to treat myself was to hide myself in my studio and have some snacks and give myself some time to WRITE, which I still love doing, and still haven't figured out how to structure my life in such a way that I can prioritize it. There is part of myself that wants to be frustrated that I don't write or meditate every day and that the house somehow manages to never be totally clean and organized the way I want it to be. And there is another part of myself that has to admit and accept that I make choices every day that impact my ability to do those things - I choose to spend time most evenings watching recurring series to pick up any minor plot that I have missed and I choose to stay connected to many of my friends/ flirty dude and exercise my social leanings frequently, if in different forms than in previous years, and all of these choices result in having to accept compromise and the reality that I cannot devote all of my time to any one thing, and therefore won't do everything and can't do everything. I'm working on it, and simultaneously fascinated as I discover my own internalized biases against agedness. At this point I am not sure. So mote it be.

I feel a little fixated on observing the passing of time and analyzing the unfolding of my life. I evaluated all of these aspects of my life, two concepts notably being my recognition and acceptance of my then single-ness and beginning to let go of my comfort zone in Sydney, which both stand in stark contrast to now. Now I am just months away from my returning day to Sydney, where I have lived in the past 10 years and place I gained most positive successes I have ever known, and looking forward a continuing journey to my enthrallingly delightful land.

Many years back, I felt fascinated by how rapidly and drastically the road ahead of me, at that time, was about to change terrain. That process has become the essence of how I see life being functional for myself. Till last year, I relocated to Abu Dhabi, a choice that certainly impacts my future outcomes, to work with the circumstances over which I have no control and present to me something different in every moment seems like the only way to achieve peace. This period in Abu Dhabi has trained me well to be patience and move forward all the while doing the things I can to influence my own life. Today I can say with a feeling of great gratification that I have done exactly that. I did not immediately do that, nor am I in the midst of a robust, busy work schedule providing ample income. I envision that being down the road and will keep working toward it. 

At this significant milestone, I do not enjoy being engaged in this work that feels deeply unsatisfying. Despite the enthusiastic positive feedback I have received, the soul-deep satisfaction is minimum. At the age of 30, the successes are insignificant. The aging... it's starting to get challenging. I wish it weren't true, but it is. It is another phase of life. I have been pondering for a while how am I possibly elevate this phase to a higher notch. I've done a lot in my 20s including attaining a number of degrees with the highest as Doctor of Philosophy and property-wise an Accord Euro which then replaced with Audi A5 and lastly the multi million Ringgit apartment in Sydney. Now I need to give my 30s a definition, get to the root of it and ameliorate it. I might be reaching the end of that belief. It is not coming with any great mourning, but more of that stoic acceptance. 

I am starting to have insight into my elders as I am more and more often experiencing a mindset that feels archetypically older. I seek more quiet than I ever have, choosing to listen to classical music over, much of the time. I quitted partying some while ago and go out much less often. I am reluctant to travel alone and I feel myself cringe a little as I admit it. I am experiencing a waning. Some of the activist fire in my belly is dwindling. Writing that sentence brought me to tears. A lot of tears. I think because it is admitting defeat. I think I need to be crystal clear here - I will never, ever accept that the way I am leading my 30s is reasonable or appropriate. I know there is a better way, beyond the shadow of a doubt. 

Friday, October 10, 2014






Monday, July 28, 2014


Departure is about dreams dashed and passions rekindled. Well it has finally happened. My time in Australia comes to an end after 8.5 wonderful years.

Only 3 days before I leave Sydney and I am getting sentimental about the impending departure. I started to pack up my stuff today and I want to prepare myself with an uncluttered mind prior to my departure.

I decided to simplify everything by throwing away redundant and unnecessary items. Some of my unused gears were cracked and useless so I threw them away. Some documents were obsolete so they went straight to the trash pile. Some of my books (unread and read) were kept in the garage while some just had to go. It is not easy to let go of some of the things as I am always a sentimental creature. The cleaning up task is indeed a lost-memories recollection process.

Marathon of farewell parties in the past few days have enough eloquent moments to compensate for its sickly sweet sentimentality. Saying goodbye to my friends was quite sad and I admit to shedding a few tears. Those warm, giddy and comfortable feeling can only occur when reunited with old friends who understand everything about the jokes I made.

As an immigrant myself in Australia, I too know the longing one continues to feel for one’s homeland, culture, and familiar surroundings even decades after making a new home someplace else, the pain of relocation is still fresh. Coming to Australia has blown my own mind wide open and I am so privileged every single day to be able to work with people from every corner of the globe. It is indeed a multi-racial nation rather than just Malay, Chinese and Indian as what my home country claimed to be. What seems to matter is that we have found new friends in this strange new land. We are able to see past cultural and societal differences and just play together and learn from each other. Somehow, we allow differences in culture, wealth, power, and religion to obscure the fact that we are all human beings. All these contradict to the practice in my home country where being an aborigine (bumiputera) outweighs everything.

Relocation gives me the chance to experience the bigger world. I shall gain new perspective, I will learn that the world is different than what I expected. There is room to expand my horizon and these experiences shape me to a better self. I salute myself with the immense sacrifices that I have encountered in this relocation process and with the precocity that comes with life-altering decision to move across the globe with immense grace and strength. I should be commended on my ingenuity and resourcefulness.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014






第一个Easter break 去了墨尔本和阿德莱德。那是一个好玩的年代。

暑假有幸拿到做研究的奖学金,第一个夏季呆在大学,研究的题目 Application of load paths to fibre steering and conceptual design of composite structures. 当时觉得很庆幸,因为大学人人平等,身为留学生的我,可以跟当地人竞争,大家都有机会,那是马来西亚不可能的事。记得那时一周有AUD420 的钱拿,真开心。












本人以往对歌唱觉得还好,觉得自己没什么天赋。也是今年认识了唱歌朋友,成立了Pooh家族,维尼,跳跳虎,Piglet,Eeyore 成员如图。 



2011年底,开始了大学里的正式工作,除了教书大半部分是研究。 很多人都以为大学工作只是纯教书,学生放假老师理所当然跟着放假。那是二流大学的制度,像我的工作一大半是研究成分,一年得发多少篇文章,拿到多少研究资金等等。一般工作都是常规的例行公事,而大学研究工作是看你的研究成果和贡献。总体来说就是一个非常用脑的任务,这样的一个工作性质让我有机会每年出国发表文章。

2013 年,加入了澳洲国籍,成为一等国家的公民。还没申请之前,曾犹豫了一阵子,毕竟还是有一个情愫在,放弃不了原本得国籍。深想一层,这一份情愫不能当饭吃,多少人千方百计掏钱移民不就是为了这个。我可是自己争取回来的,不能怪我不怀旧,只是我看不到希望。







Friday, March 21, 2014


马航MH370班机失踪了这么多天,现在算是有了新的进展,有澳洲军方的介入,TONY ABBOT虽然不是哪根葱,但也召开了新闻发布会说了几句领导人的人话。最起码,这短短的几句话要比过去十几天任何一则来自马来西亚官方的消息都靠谱 。反观马来西亚政府,客机向西飞走这么重要的信息,竟然在十国部队大搜南中国海域一个礼拜之后,才犹抱琵琶半遮面地缓缓揭露。他们到底在想什么?难怪全球媒体在继续关注那架飞机的去向之谜的同时把大马政府搬上尴尬舞台冷嘲热讽。

马来西亚各个部门放出来的消息混乱,前言不搭后语。在大家都质疑着马来西亚政府有所隐瞒的时刻,我说这一切都归根于马来人与生俱来的自由散漫和民族劣根性。在马国长大的我,非常了解马来人的作风。马来西亚一党独大,自独立以来一党统治了这么多年,其实只要稍为了解大马政局,就丝毫不会觉得当地政府连日来的表现有多奇怪了。这一回只是他们运气不好,往日习以为常的行政低效与官僚无能,一下子被放大到整个国际镜头之下。从前他们在国内无法无天肆意妄为,根本不必担心舆论监督,久而久之成了被惯坏的傻B,现在忽然遇上全世界的目光,难免手忙脚乱,丑态百出。从前他们不怕本地传媒,说什么就是什么,自家媒体报道的都是自卖自夸;现在碰到国外媒体的长枪短炮再也招架不住,自曝其短之余颜面扫地 。出生于马来西亚的我面对国际友人该情何以堪。

Monday, January 20, 2014

New car

Perhaps, there are certain sparkle appears in my eyes when asked about my first car. First car is probably a landmark in life, and often I associate it with exciting dates, day trips, or merely showcasing it on the street.

July 2011, the day came after half a year I moved out from the university campus. I realised my own transport has became a necessity and I want to stop relying on public transport for rides here and there. My visit to the Larke Hoskins in Homebush ended up with a brand new Honda Accord Euro 2.4 luxury. While taking the ride home, I remembered how many hours I have to work to save up for my car and how accomplished I felt when I bought it.

Everything was feeling great. I remember those moment, I was so certain that obtaining a first car is a very important milestone in one’s life. It not only gives you the independence to drive wherever you want, but it also gives you a sense of freedom. It felt even better that I was rushing out to the street and getting into my new car. Each time I started up the car and headed to work, I remember those waiting period, idling hours I spent and how I deserved this rite of passage. Also, I felt lucky that time based on the fact that I did not receive a single penny from my parent for my first car which granted me the feeling of being a truly independent teen.

Upgrading my first car recently was probably a big leap in life. I would treasure it for as long as I have it. This trip back to Malaysia, I witnessed a cousin brother of mine upgraded his Kia Forte to Peugeot 408. More importantly, there was this nice Audi A6 replacing the Honda Accord 2.0 on a very important person in my life. I told myself that I would like to keep the same pace with this person despite that we are leading the different path now. I did have some negative feelings, more like my incompetency towards this person. Negative feelings must be released directly by some kind of process based on a sophisticated way. It was then I decided to visit Audi Centre upon my arrival in Sydney.  

There I go, a brand new Audi Q5 TDI. 

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Home country food

I find myself becoming quite nostalgic about the hometown/country food that I used to take for granted now that I have been residing abroad. These are snapshots of food taken between periods 4 Dec - 14 Dec 2013, 19 Dec -25 Dec 2013, 1 Jan -13 Jan 2014. Sorry that my comments are mostly negative, but I did enjoy them during my stay in Malaysia. I have a bit of difficulty in remembering those restaurants in Chinese name, lol. 

A simple dinner in Sekinchan. 
My favorite crab, but taste really so so. 

Steamed fish head in 168 Restaurant, Lorong 6 Site B, taste really so so and I doubt I will ever go back

This steamed fish head was much better, consistent as it used to be- Ah kua restuarant

A horrible dried wonton noodle, diagonal to the post office in Sekinchan. I will never go back for sure. 

Mom's cooking, always the best! Wish I could have more. 

A 'drunken' prawn soup, somewhere half way to Genting, Batang Berjuntai I guess?

Bird nest in Genting Highland, nothing special other than dumping cash for this. 

Fish in Batang Kali restaurant, reasonably good!

Back to Sekinchan, these were taken in Dua Mui at Bagan, Sekinchan. The food quality dropped significant this trip, quite disappointed. 

Crab with fried Meehoon and Pomfret congee, not bad.  

Beef ball and Green curry noodle, nothing special other than with someone special. 

Another steam fish head in Sekinchan taken opposite red cross medical center. I would prefer the Ah Kua one shown above. 

Taken somewhere at Changlun, north of Peninsula Malaysia.

A family dinner at a restaurant opposite market in Sekinchan. 

Scampi and shrimp paste in Tony Roma, but where is the scampi? What a disappointment! 

Very poorly served fish. Taken at restaurant next to the temple in Sekinchan. 

Maggi goreng in Zam Zam. No comment on its taste, it was more like memory recollection after so long. 

Surprisingly good, opposite to the post office in Sekinchan. 

Taken in one of my favorite restaurant in Tengkurak, the fish head dish was good but the rest, so so. 

Another dried wonton noodle, taken next to market in Sekinchan. Its consistent taste, did recall my childhood memory. 

Sashimi in Niyjimaru, Permas Jaya Johor, quite good but priced at RM59. 

Charsiew and siewyok at Tun Aminah, nearby Sutera Mall in Johor Bahru. I have to say good because my lawyer fren paid for this.  

Nasi ulam something in Plan B, Bangsar village. Too dry!