Wednesday, April 30, 2014


i was once at a career crossroad.....

having already decided to do engineering during my secondary school days, as maths & physics were (& still are) my fave subjects, i made a sharp turn & took up medicine instead.

it was a major change, biology being my weakest science subject.

it was easy to explain the change to anyone who asked.....i received a higher calling & i have not looked back since.

this week, it was my daughter's turn at the crossroad......

having enrolled earlier this year into a pre-med course in auckland, she has been offered direct entry into another course ......

however, this is a different dilemma compared to's a step down in terms of career prestige but it's offered by the top-ranked university in asia with a full scholarship thrown in......

ahh.....decisions.....decisions.....although i elaborated to her the pros & cons of each offer, i restrained from expressing my preference. after all, it's her career, her life & her consequences.

in times like this, i directed her to some choice advice.....

Thus says the Lord:
Stand at the crossroads, and look,
    and ask for the ancient paths,
where the good way lies; and walk in it,
    and find rest for your souls. (Jer 6:16, NRSV)

i myself am curious whether she'll waver from the current what i did years ago.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

this is your pilot speaking......good night!

this is a true story narrative.....

my colleague went on an evening MAS flight from KLIA last week. it was after boarding that the passengers were told that there would be a delay because of a "technical problem." they had to remain seated for over 2 hours without air-con or beverage. my colleague decided to complain because of the discomfort of the warm & humid, not to mention cramped, environment. i suppose if you're already flying, the constraints of economy class could be easily overlooked. after all, you paid for those seats but you certainly didn't expect to be seated & yet not moving for over 2 hours.

with no further announcement forthcoming, people started to get restless. after an extremely long silence, this came over the PA system:

this is your pilot speaking......good night.....i'm going home.

as it turned out, pilots have a strict work-hour schedule & there has to be a change of flight crew after certain number of working hours, presumably to prevent effects of fatigue.

in the end, they had to change planes (presumably the "technical problem" was a major one) & the flight finally took off after more than a 4-hour delay.

with the current controversy over MH370, i think pilots should be more sensitive & refrain from saying "good night" in their flight announcements. i am just surprised a pandemonium didn't erupt.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

what changed the world?

i can totally relate to this article. the world now is not the same one we used to know when we were kids. progress stamps its mark but along with change comes its ugly baggage as well. how often do we wish we could go back to the good old times?

i would. that's why i look forward to reunions.

we just had one.

this is our class of 79/84.

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

authorised car service....or another scam?

dropped off my car last week at the authorised workshop for the 50K km service. the service advisor told me the parts that needed to be changed, eg. engine oil, filter, which i had expected.

half an hour later, i got a call from the foreman servicing my car & he said the wipers, air-con filter & battery needed replacement. apparently, the wipers had uneven edges, the air-con filter is clogged up & the battery is weak.

i said OK but told the guy that the battery was changed middle of last year & it's still within the warranty period, ie. 12months & 20K km. he said he'd check & call me back. it was the service advisor who called me & said the battery was weak because i hardly use the car, hence it's not fully charged.

i told her it doesn't matter how much i used the car, as long as it's within the warranty period & if the battery is "weak", then it should be changed without any cost to me. then she started bla ...bla....bla.... that she'll get the foreman to fully charge my battery & that should be OK after that. but i stood my ground, questioning why the foreman asked to change battery in the 1st place when all it needed was a full charge.

anyway, i told her in an agitated tone to do what needed to be done & i'll come collect the car later that evening. my mind was screaming,"Scam! Scam!"

 i sort of held my breath when i went to the workshop later. as expected, the woman service advisor whom i had earlier dealt with avoided me & it was another guy who who attended to me. he explained that, although not standard practice, the battery was changed out of goodwill. i thanked him & wondering if it was standard practice to change parts that do not need changing.

back home, i deleted the email i had earlier drafted, addressed to car's corporate HQ in KL.