Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Corals & Fishes

It seems I just returned from Ophir and before I know, it's time to pack for my diving trip! This is gonna be my first dive this year, my first dive trip and second visit to Pulau Redang, an island about 45mins away from Terengganu.

We left for Terengganu on Thursday night in a comfy 26 seater VIP coach. The coach departed at 10pm. I was pigging away busy with my Z's and before you know it, we have reached Terengganu on Friday at 7am. The tide was too low to get to Redang and we had breakfast in the meantime. The food tasted horrible. We left the jetty at 930am. I was still half awake.

Redang Kalong Resort is a humble resort off the mainstream beach. Facilities are basic and simple. The water seems to taste somewhat salty. Perhaps its water filtered from the sea, I do not know. The orange cordial they served tasted like isotonic drinks. The BOH tea that I had always loved tasted weird. The food was, edible. Meals are served 4 times a day, breakfast, lunch, tea, dinner. BBQ dinners were on alternate nights. The accomodation was a humble airconditioned chalet, with beds and blankets that did not make my sensitive nose sneeze, thankfully.

I was very thankful because after months of outdoor adventure and sleeping in tents, I finally have a roof over my head and a bed to sleep in. And for that I slept extremely well :) I was finally somewhere where it felt more like a "holiday".

We did 5 dives, all boat dives and we had to enter by the backrow method. 2 on Friday and 3 on Saturday. I was told, we have up to 20m of visibility but the visibility was lesser than I expected at about 10m - 15m. It was fairly relaxing except that after having not dived in a year, my skills have gone a little rusty.

Dive 1
My BCD was still a tad too big but manageble. This sort of thing really tempts me to get my own equipment. Grrr..

I couldn't equalise properly! I had one side of my ears blocked and forgot to breathe in my concentration to clear a pathetic blocked ear. I'm fortunate to realise it quick enough. My buddy didn't have the same luck.

There was nothing fanciful to see as this was more like a check out dive. So I guess, there was nothing much to miss. I brought down the empty underwater casing for my camera. There were actually water vapour seen in it after a while. I really had no idea whether it was safe to bring the camera along with it.

Dive 2
My skills are back. With all equipment on, I'm raring to go.

The currents were superbly strong and not holding onto anything literally means you'll be sweot away the minute you aren't careful.

Dive 3
This first dive in the morning at 0830am but the water was not cold at all. With the same 3 weights on, my buoyancy was terrible and got chided for it. I was overweighted and had to fill my BCD with such a lot of air.

Dive 4
We shared the dive boat with 3 other French divers. I used 2 weights this time and it was much better. But this was still the dive with nothing much to see.

It's a nice feeling to dive amongst the channels. I learnt that there were "blind spots" in such channels. I actually saw the "currents" and witnessed the cold and hot streams mixing with each other as we cut through them.

Dive 5
First, I got the wrong wet suit on. How could I be so muddle-headed?! I made the boat turn back because of it or someone else I don't know is not going to be very happy with me :P

Then, my mask flooded, and it flooded. At first I thought I could clear it after descending. Goodness gracious, the speed of water entering was rapidly filling my mask. A couple more attempts were futile and I was literally clearing my mask on my entire way down, testing my multi-tasking and endurance skills to the max. Throughout the entire dive, I was clearing my mask, and clearing, and clearing.

Despite the series of unfortunate events, this turned out to be the best dive of the 5 we have done so far. We saw the most interesting creatures of the deep, many of which I have not seen before. The experience was indeed very satisfying.

All too soon, it was time to return to reality after a weekend of doing nothing by the sun, the sand and the sea, doing nothing but to dive, eat, sleep. Days of idling and lazing on the beach are going to be over in a matter of hours.

The way back was a torture as we stopped over at several places to pick and drop other passengers. That's what happens when you have to share a bus with other people. Halfway through, the disel leaked and filled the entire coach with its pungent aroma so badly we had to get off. Fortunately, the problem was rectified during our next dinner stop at Yong Peng.

By the time I returned, I had slept so much that I was so tired and could think of doing nothing except sleep.


Posted by LiTTle-FooT at 4:29 PM with 0 comments

Photography and Loving to take pictures

There are 2 kinds of people who like "photography".
  1. The kinds who love taking pictures, of themselves especially, a.k.a self adoration.
  2. The kinds who enjoy getting a good picture taken.

I've always loved the candid shots, the ones that mean good picture composition and capturing "the moment". A picture tells a thousand words. And a good picture, a story. They surpass the "say cheese" pictures anytime, anywhere. Frankly, pictures of people, will soon become stale. It's either picture the scenery or the people. Forcing the 2 to be together, somehow just spoils everything. In fact, I've come to be grossly put off by the ones who simply love taking pictures, especially that of themselves. There is a single shot for each particular place, with each particular person. I may have exaggerated but when multipled, the effect is scary.

There is nothing wrong with loving to pose for the cameraman. Unless it is a photo shoot-out, I think something is very wrong when it goes overboard and becomes distasteful.

Posted by LiTTle-FooT at 4:07 PM with 0 comments

Friday, May 20, 2005

Stupid Interview 1

I reached there at 4pm. They told me its at 5pm! Sickening. I waited 1 hour. What more, I had to rush home to get ready for Ophir.

Anyway, this was something they asked:

You have a system in production, there is a bug, you have to roll it out in 2 weeks time. What would you do?

Instinctively, I thought, 2 weeks to fix a bug? Your head will probably roll! A change request or enhancement is really different from a bug isn't it?!

Posted by LiTTle-FooT at 11:26 AM with 0 comments

Ophir, here I come..

I will be going to Ophir for the 3rd time tonight....the weather's not been good. So, I don't know if I should really be looking forward to it. This group..always rain, always bad weather...

We are going up via Asahan and coming down via Sagil with an entire repertoire of 42 people! Its quite an entourage! And we're gonna sleep at approximately 1000m above sea level. The thought of it is pretty exciting :) I'm the first aider and I'll be cooking pasta dinner on the second day.

But! I haven't packed my bag......its gonna be a rush rush after my iv this evening.

Posted by LiTTle-FooT at 10:03 AM with 1 comments

Draw A Pig!

This has to be one of the most interesting tests I've come across..

Try it!

Posted by LiTTle-FooT at 9:35 AM with 0 comments

Thursday, May 19, 2005

About Bozz(os) again

Today, a colleauge was asking me after lunch....how's many projects have I done here...I said, 2.
His confirmation date was approaching, as is mine. There's only 1 question we newbies have in mind. To stay or to go? Why? Because we are simply rotting here...

He is rotting just as I'm rotting...projects delayed, held back, doing nothing but waiting. I realised one thing, that I am not the only person with such a plight BUT the only person with SUCH a bozzo. So, my fate is different from the rest. I am getting more and more convinced that it's just a rotten excuse.

IT is like the backyard here where everyone wants out. The little blackie has been here for over 10 years and only an SSE. The PM too. He's an AM but an AM ain't really an M too. The "born and bred" here probably can't do anything much outside, much less get the same moolahs simply because the skills just aren't good enough.

While other people have work thrown at them, I need to find things to do. And as if I don't ask, these go by unnoticed. But somewhere down the line, either information is withheld so that I get labelled "lack of initiative". There's really a limit to how small frys like me can do.

A typical week passes by at user site, handholding the user, walking through the solution proposal. In the meantime, vendor and user debating over what is and is not in scope. Then comes the use case specifications which are written in nothing but plain English. This means a few more weeks of spoon feeding because as users, they "do not understand use cases" (which by the way is written in English). They don't understand what is date-timestamp? Examples quoted should be realistic and real life? Don't you know what it means to be an example? It is a misery that, they even complain that documents are not easy to read. They forgot to think it was even harder to prepare them.

What can I do? If people don't respond. If people are on leave, if there are no backups? If the project is not their prority, if they are across half the globe in Europe or America and on holiday mood because it is now Nov/Dec?

Is it really my luck? That by the time "engines" start again and its time for appraisal. It looks like I have done nothing much because everyone was pretty much "on holiday". I'm pretty sure there's at least one other person in the same circumstance and rotting. But...appraised by a different bozzo. I think I'm just very down on my luck.

Posted by LiTTle-FooT at 2:12 PM with 0 comments

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

He still remembered I exist!

Today, I got an email from him asking me to work. What a surprise! I guess it was also due to a good move on my part. All along, I thought he had already forgotton about me. I don't even like to walk past his cubicle now. Just don't like seeing this black face near me. I'm very sure, he had a part to play in whatever happen/is going to happen to me today.

Blackies are vicious creatures that can stab you in the back. They pretend to be the docile sheeps while we become the scapegoats for any of their misdeeds. It's my fault, its always my fault when I can't get something done. When employees do less than expected, its always their fault, not the bozz's.

Anyway, I was supposed to get some information from someone from another department. Who apparently was not in. I managed to call her this morning to find out she was not around yesterday. It's now 4pm and she has yet to reply on a system she's currently supporting. My job, is to call her again.

Then I was also supposed to make some HTML changes to a "canned demo". But I was supposed to find the "realistic" values out of the thin air. The colleauge he recommended doesn't have the information. Now, I'm hanging in mid-air again. If I can't get the values right, it's gonna be my fault again.

Posted by LiTTle-FooT at 4:06 PM with 0 comments

Monday, May 16, 2005

My Favourite Dentist!

My favourite dentist.....was recommended by a friend of mine. The first time I saw him. Ok. Neutral. He was a young and talkative chap. Friendly and kinda cute. I guess we could talk because I was young (I'm still young) and he's young (compared to all other dentists I've seen)too...

I last saw him...1 year ago when I meant to get my teeth straightened out. But I wanted to get my diving over and done with first. So it delayed till today. My goodness, 1 whole year later. I will get it done this year. I promise.

Anyway, why I saw him again. Because I went to the company dentist for an ache in my cheek. I had originally thought it was a cavity which the old company dentist didn't find. His scaling and cleaning skills sucked. He blamed my bad gums for it. He said, "Your gums not very good, clean a bit, it start to bleed." He told me to eat more citrus fruits and sent me off with some bicarbonate soda tablets to rinse my mouth with.

3 days later, the ache is still there. Something is not right. I happen to be in the area and suddenly remembered my favourite dentist. I called him and asked if he would be in today. I met him 30 mins later in his clinic. It was later I found out he actually was not working today. When I saw him, OMG. He had put on quite a bit of weight and apparently, not as cute anymore. :P But his pattern still the same...

My favourite dentist, also did not find any cavity. He flossed the huge molar that was right at the back. I have no idea how he could do such an impossible thing. He did a mini x-ray and told me that it could be a crack. He got another pretty dentist in to confirm. Finally, he told me, it could either be gum infection OR a crack in the tooth. I was stunned. How could my teeth possibly, CRACK?!

He explained to me how and what we can do to make it better. I got free cleaning and scaling on those 2 teeth which of course didn't hurt like ALL other dentists. I SWEAR, I have not been to a single dentist who doesn't hurt me when cleaning my teeth! And then blames it on my bad gums. *bleah* If you need a good dentist to clean your teeth...I'd gladly recommend him, anytime.

I was given a course of chlorhexidine mouth rinse and antibiotics. Miserably, I headed back to work after my .5 day leave. I really hope my tooth gets better. Because the worst case scenario would mean an expensive crown for my tooth. I'm no princess, so no crowns for me please.

Posted by LiTTle-FooT at 3:44 PM with 0 comments

Saturday, May 14, 2005

The Way to the Dentist

I have to see a dentist. I have an ache in my cheek that not only refuses to go away but is giving me headaches. I late and in a real hurry to visit the company dentist because of another scheduled appointment after the dentist visit. So I took a cab from Tanah Merah MRT.

Up the cab I went and told the driver I wanted to go to Toa Payoh Lorong 8. We were near the destination when I informed the driver I needed to go to block 234. Obviously, I was expecting him to know the place or at least try to find the location.

To my utmost surprise, he just gave a blunt "I don't know where" reply. I was silently fuming. This is yet another lazy bugger who expects to be "spoonfed". If you don't know, can't you learn, can't you find? Or at a minimum level, slow down and look out for the correct destination.

It was late already. Anyway, we were at Lorong 8 where he continued with his usual speed and expected me to know the way when I have already told him upfront, I need to go to block 234. Of course, indirectly it meant, I don't really know how to get there. Block 234 of course zoomed past behind. Had I not kept a look out, he would have brought me for a tour of Toa Payoh Lorong 8.

I told him block 234 is behind already and he gave me a blank expression of what-do-you-want-me-to-do-now?, U-turn is it? Darn...Please use some common sense. Frankly, I was quite quite irritated already.

I was about to pay when I had no small change. I gave him a $50 note for the fare which came to about $1x.xx. He told me he had no change and demanded I give him small change.

This time, I just told him. I got no small change (I really didn't have any). I also don't have! What kind of taxi driver are you? No small change? I just started my shift. I give you already I don't have. In my mind, I think he does have small change.

In the end, he reluctantly got off to try to change for small notes.

What a Friday the 13th.

Posted by LiTTle-FooT at 11:16 AM with 0 comments

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Suicide Attempt 2

Back to my suicide attempt. I tried my luck at committing suicide back on Good Friday weekend.

I have good news to share! I passed! Anyway, I just made it. Nothing to be so proud of.

Just yesterday, someone just told me more than 50% of the class had failed. I had expected myself to be one of them especially since I am not in that industry. I have no background. The 3 day symposia followed by the exam on the fourth day was a killer. I was so so tired at the end of everyday. I had never felt quite like that even during my days of schooling.

This must be the best thing that had happened to me in weeks. And of course, a very good birthday present for myself. I ought to give myself a pat on my own little back. :)

Posted by LiTTle-FooT at 5:09 PM with 0 comments

Monday, May 02, 2005

My New UI...

...is BLACK...

Just like my mood....
Nothing is going right...
Everything is pissing me off...

Posted by LiTTle-FooT at 2:38 PM with 0 comments