Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Life's been flat... That's all I can say... Flat...

My wife and I celebrated our 1st anniversary yesterday by not doing anything... Cause that's the only thing to be done here in this forsaken place...

The only consolation is that we found a rather good place to have western dinner... It's not exactly Itallianies, but the standards are good enough as compared to whatever else we've had in this town so far.

This place really needs some getting used to...

My only fear now is that my taste buds will slowly deteriorate because of a lack of constant good food pumping into my stomach. Heck, even now my wife tells me that my requirements towards food has gone down... Imagine this, stuff that she says are inedible are 'ok' by my standards... now that is crappy...

So, yeah... last night dinner was a welcomed respite somehow...

But against all this, at least the people here are good... There's not much malice in this town... Or is it that I haven't been around enough to know the bad side of town?

Coming from a gangster town, I don't think anything would faze me, but then, you'll never know... heh... I know there are some gangsters in town, but they don't seem as rampant as those from where I come from...

So, yeah...

About work, it's been ok so far. There's not much to do this week and we consider it the calm before the storm. it's gonna get tremendously heavy in the weeks to come. We're going to have an Open Day cum Christmas Celebration in Mid Dec, and then it's full steam ahead until the start of the new semester on the 5th Jan. Registration is on the 2nd & 3rd Jan for ALL schools in Tawau, and it's gonna get hectic. I could just foresee students and parents coming to us the days after that to try and get into the school because they can't get into the school of their choice.

So, yeah... as they say, we must be prepared for anything and everything... but then, there's a whole wide world out there... how does one presume to achieve that?


Monday, November 24, 2008

Life as a pregger

Yes! I am finally blogging but its from my hubby's blog. hahaha. I tried to start one, I really did but its the maintaining part that turns me off. Malas la~~

If you have been following my hubby's blog you would know that we've been here in Tawau for awhile. To be exact I have been here for like 1 month and 9 days. The first month was truly a bit of a torture. The taste of the food here is not as intense as those that I have learnt to like. Even the most basic 'gu lou yuk' taste plain. Bleak! I guess its because we did not have transport and we could not look for restaurants with good food. So even if you are in a small town like Tawau, you HAVE to have a car, or at least a motorbike to get yourself around. Otherwise, life would be miserable without some comfort food.

So on top of the bad food, I was experiencing real discomfort due to the first trimester of my pregnancy. I did not have morning, noon, evening or night sickness but I was bloated with gas. If you throw me into a swimming pool to save someone who is about to drown, most probably, just most probably he can use me as a float to save himself. My poor colleagues would usually be able to tell what I had for breakfast just by smelling the burps that I made in the office. Its really annoying but its better than farting, I guess.

There are also things which pregnant women are not suppose to do and for me, the 'pantang' nearly drove me crazy. Its so difficult to avoid doing things like carrying heavy stuff or wear high heels when your shoe collection has no flat heel shoes. Have to eat good food la. This and that la. Argh!

Thank goodness, I am into my second trimester already. Things are starting to look and feel much better. Although, my weight has dropped slightly cos of a sick spell, things are still not too bad. We just had another baby photo taken at the Doc's. It's really amazing. I was surprised to see that the fetus has grown so much after a month. Both of us were like silent for awhile after looking at the baby through the ultrasound scan. The Doc also showed us the baby's heart which was beating like mad but normal. First time parents bah so we were like a bit sakai. So before I sign off, here are some pics.

This was taken when the fetus was only 8 weeks. Too small to recognise what it really looks like. Don't even know where the head was.

And this was just taken last Saturday. The baby has grown to 6cm measured from head to butt. Amazing, dont's you think?!

Pregger signing off.

Friday, November 21, 2008

It's been quite some time...

Indeed, it's been quite some time since my mind churned up a valuable question to be discussed and posted on this blog.

I went home after lunch for a short siesta this fine day and as I was awakened, I suddenly asked myself, that since there isn't any set culture in school, as everyone who enters Form 1 enters into it as individuals who know nothing about the cultures of the school.

When I was still in Secondary School about 10 years back, no one told me how to do things, no one told me that there's a certain way of doing things around here, the senior basically didn't want anything to do with us 'juveniles' and most of all, my classmates were all the same age as I was, and were all finding their identities in this world.

So who sets the culture in the school?

We know that the teachers play a bit part, but who the heck listens to the teachers anyway? Find me a class who will willingly do EVERYTHING that their teachers tell them and obey them as if it were given by God Himself(!) and I'll retract everything I said in this post.

So the question remains, who sets the culture in school? Who starts the rebellion? Who determines how most of the students will act when faced with challenges, when faced with a pointing finger, when faced with temptation of being offered a cig, when faced with the invitation to go to a classmate's house to watch illegal movies? Who tells them how to act and react to circumstances?

Surely the teachers can't control all the students, and surely, some would follow, but most will not, but who teaches them to do all those things that I've been reading in the school rules?

You know, as I was preparing the school rules for the school that I am setting up, I do find that a lot of the rules were written as an effect of things that happened before in another school, which we adopted our rules from. There's stuff in there that says you shall not use cutex, which is a firm of nail polish. Heck, I didn't even knew there was cutex. Then there's stuff like 'You can't jaywalk in prohibited areas, especially the teachers' car park. Then there's stuff like, "You cannot be caught being in couples at dark areas, and underneath the trees!! Like isn't that a little bit too overtly specific?

So back to the question, do the students collectively decide, by way of natural selection, of what to follow, when to follow and how to follow?

Or are they who their parents brought them up to be? If you say that they are who their parents brought them up to be when they are still in Primary School, there would be certain truths in that. But we are talking about Secondary School kids here. They have already somewhat grown into an identity of their own, independent from their parents.

But if you say that they act as what they observe in their parents, then does it go to say that their parents are that 'bad' in their homes?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

This is me... I guess...

Well, it's frustrating to be staying in a half-way kinda house. 

What you want, you cannot get, what you need, you cannot want, what you get, you cannot keep... It's futile, this place... 

The people are fine, lovely and well behaved... maybe a little too well behaved... I guess that my wife and I are probably the most un-innocent people in the little community that we live in... Or maybe everyone's a wolf in sheep's skin? 

This town makes one go paranoid I guess... Maybe becaue of its location on the face of the earth that segregates it form the rest of the world. Let's just say that evil breeds in small quantities around this town... 

There's not much to be done, there's not much temptation at all, You can't even get yourself into decent trouble if you wanted to... lovely place... for tree-hugging hippies... 

I'm not saying that the fellas staying here should fall under that category, but yeah... somehow, I feel like I'm trapped in this bubble of goodness... Like, evil doesn't stay here... exterior evil that is... Evil of the heart, I'm not so sure... but from the outside, everything seems to be prim and proper...

Maybe I'm just paranoid after so many years in KL... 

But I'm just complaining for the sake of complaining... gotta write something for my readers to read about I guess...

Monday, November 17, 2008


And to cap it all off, there indeed is nothing to do in Tawau... 

It's slightly after 8pm and I've done my laundry, went out for dinner, shopped in 2 super markets, and went to 2 banks. 

nuff said...

The school is progressing as it should, and there is enough reason for us to believe that we will be able to start in the next semester. 

I'll be going to KL on the 6th and 7th Dec for a meeting. Apparently, the gov sees 'youth' as being in the age group of 15 - 40 years old, and that just cuts the entire Boys' Brigade, or whatever secondary school based youth society into 2 parts. How stupid can you get? You have just made a decision that says, if you're in Form 3 and below, you're a child, and therefore, you cannot be registered into a youth group. And if you're in Form 4, then you can be a youth in a youth organisation. Like who spends 2 years in a youth organisation and then leave for further studies?


Thursday, November 13, 2008

It's not everyday that I can blog...

Yeah... I'll say that again.. It's not everyday that I have the luxury of sitting down alone in the dark with my mini on, and blog about life.

It's been interesting so far, how things have developed, and it's not so much of what to do, but when to do things. And it is this 'when' that is killing my settling down process. 

We know we will move to Bandar Sri Indah, but we don't know when. We know that the school will be built-up before Jan 2009, but we don't know exactly when. We know we will need to buy a TV, a washing machine, get astro, maybe buy a car, but we don't know when. 

Everything's in limbo and I don't know when we're gonna crack...

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

My first 3-pointer...

I was asked to speak at a BB&GB Camp in the past few days. This is the full text:

The Chosen ONE

What is this 'chosen one' business that we are talking about today?

I believe everyone understands that life is all about choices. The making of choices, the suffering or the happiness that one finds as a consequence of making a choice. I made a choice to marry my wife, you made a choice to come here, your friends made a choice to study, or not to study. To do homework, not to do it; to make this phone call or to wait here. 

Life is full of choices. And God gives us that ability to choose. Imagine God making everyone as He likes them. THen Adam and Eve wouldn't have had the choice to sin. Then the earth wouldn't have to be like this. and we would still be living in paradise. 

But today, we are not here to discuss about whether we have a choice or not, we are here to talk about God being the first who chose us and called us into His will! 

So say to your neighbour, God put you here for His purpose!

If you believe in God being the ruler, maker, creator, sovereign God, the Almighty, then you need to understand the Sovereignty of God. Now what does it mean, the Sovereignty of God? It means that God is totally in control. There is nothing beyond His control, and He causes all things to work for His glory. That is His perfect and unchanging will. 

But that is all about God, and what does it have to do with you and me?

Well, if you believe that God chose you into His perfect will, then you must also believe that you are the Chosen one, because according to the bible, God first chose us. (2 Th 2:13 / Jn 15:16) 

Shall we turn to Matt 5:13-16 today and learn what it means to be 'The Chosen One'. 

Matt 5:13-16
Salt and Light
 13"You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men.

 14"You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. 15Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

1. Stay Relevant
v.13 says when salt loses its saltiness, it cannot be made salty again. 
We, as followers of Christ, the chosen people of God, need to stay relevant to the society we live in. We cannot say that because we are followers of Christ, we should stay away from the evils of society, and thus, we stay in our little comfortable church that we have worked so hard to protect against the evil of the society outside. I look upon people who tell me that they are proud to live in seclusion from the 'evil' people outside with scepticism and wonder if they are really seeing the world as they should. 

And then there are the Christian organisations who are sometimes holding too tighly onto their well worked traditions until they lose their cutting edge. When a church loses its cutting edge, it becomes irrelevant to the society it ministers to. People change. Times change. The only constant in this world is 'change'. Change never stops nor does it ever sleep. The world around us is ever-changing. What is the church doing to cope with this change? Hold on to our traditions? Hold on to the same winning formula that was relevant 15 years ago? NO! We are called to be the head, not the tail. We should lead, not follow. And as BB and GB today, what are we doing? Are we still the cutting edge organisation that God wants us to be? Are we offering our society with something that is exactly what they need? Or are we holding on to our time-honoured traditions and saying that we are used to doing this like this and like that?

Have we lost our saltiness?

2. Do not hide
You are the light of the world! If Jesus says that you are the light of the world, then why are you hiding? Are you hiding? Has feared taken over of you? Have you lost your pride in being a follower of Christ? The Bible syas that a city on a hill cannot be hidden. Are you a city on a hill or are you more like a small house on top of a big hill? When you are good, when you stick together for something which is good, you are like a city on a hill. People will see you from far away. People will say good rumours about you. We need to tackle 2 things in this verse. 1st is that we must be united. If we stick together, our collective light on the hill will shine ever so brightly. If you are just a small house, people will not be able to see you. How to work as 1 unit? FOr this, you must study football. How can you make 11 different characters of different skills to work as 1 team? How do you work as a team? 

1. Clear instruction
2. One direction, One commander - There can only be 1 decision maker. That's why God make us with 1 head and 2 hands and 2 feet.
3. Know your role in the organisation
4. Keep emotions in check - People tend to make stupid mistakes when they are emotional. 
5. Remember that you can never make everyone happy, but you must be able to make everyone sacrifice happily. 
6. 2-way communication: every part of the body must know what the other part is doing. If not, the body will not be able to function properly.If you finger is cut, isn't it that your whole body will move according to that hurt? Imagine if your arm doesn't know that your finger hurts?
7. Always be courteous. 

COmmunication is the key to unity.

3. Do all things for His glory.
16In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

Jesus came to earth to do the will of Him who sent Him. He said, in Jn 4:34  34"My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work." So what is the will of God?

The will of God is for all creation to glorify Him. 
Are you glorifying Him in your life? 
How have you been spending your time?
Is my purpose in life in line with God's purpose for me? Am I glorifying Him in every decision that I am making?
Have I put my purpose above God's purpose?

Faith & Confidence should go hand in hand.
Faith is a funny thing. How much faith do you have in the chair that you are sitting on? Will it not collapse? How do you know it will sustain your weight? 
The only way to know is to try it out. Sit on it first, and then you'll realise that it can and will support your weight. The same goes for God.

It takes some experience. You need to put in that little step of faith in order for your faith to grow.

Shall we pray.


Saturday, November 08, 2008

Still settling in

I know it's been the theme for quite some time... But that's the truth I guess...

It's difficult being in a situation where you are trying to settle down but yet you know that you're gonna uproot and settle somewhere else in the very near future. It does have a negative effect on the human psyche. My wife and I are trying so hard to fit-in, settle down, set some boundaries, get used to life, but yet, we cannot because we are in a half-way sort of situation. There's so many things we need but cannot buy simply because we don't wanna move some more stuff when we eventually move, and there's so many creature comforts that we can have but are resisting because where we live in is not our final destination...

I guess we've found out why we're so tired to the point of being lethargic in the evenings. We stay in this room that gets the full heat of the afternoon sun, and whenever we come back from work, we are like going back to an oven. Maybe that's why we're always tired. Now we're adamant to not save on the electricity bill by turning on the air-con during the evening. Maybe we'll cut down on the night usage. But we seem to not get that tired after experimenting for the past 2 days. Well, we'll know sooner than later I guess.

We went to Giant on Thursday night, and I must admit, I am not impressed at all. I mean Giant is Giant, and it's supposed to be Giant, but all we see are a whole lot of empty racks. I guess it just shows how far end are we on the supply line. It's like Tawau is at the end of the supply chain and we only get stuff that have been written off by Sandakan and even Lahad Datu. Nothing's cheap around here, and everything's back dated. Everything seems to be so yesterday...

Well, I guess life's like that for a guy like me.

I keep thanking God that I found a wife that's willing to live in such dire circumstances. Well, I guess the Bible does hold its truths when it says that foxes have holes, birds have nests, but the son of man... has no where to lay his head...

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

This is like the 2nd month I'm here in Tawau.

Resources are depleting as I type this out. We are running low on cash as we didn't forsee that we needed to buy so many things. Utensils, food, stocking up for the late nights where food is not readily available, some expenses that we didn't know we needed to use money on, like purchasing a new monitor, replacing stuff that we couldn't bring over from Sunway, and other stuff like medical bills.

I've been coughing for the past month or so. The thing just keeps coming back. It's like I'm slipping in and out of coughing. For a while, I was fine, and then out of no where, the coughs came back She's feeling a little under the weather. Not sure if it's related to the pregnancy.

But we're settling down. Trying to. We are still not entirely settled as our next move up to Mile 10 will not happen until the building gets set up properly. So, we've been staying at the staff quarters, a temporary refuge, trying to settle down, but at the same time knowing that we can't because of the inevitable move up to Mile 10.

I guess we still haven't gotten used to the whole climate of this place.

The baby is about 8 weeks old now, and we had a scan a couple of weeks ago, and it was a profound experience. It's weird looking into the screen knowing that your wife is carrying an entirely different life inside her tummy. We saw the heart-beat of our child, and it was a mixture of emotions as I glimpsed into the little screen trying to get a cleared picture of the little heart beating rapidly inside my wife.

No wonder they say fatherhood changes everything.

We're still living out of boxes for now, and everything is kind of everywhere strewn along the floor of the room. There's a lot of things we have grown accustomed to in our bedroom, and living in this temporary bedroom only highlights how used to the old bedroom we were. It's like, whatever we needed, we couldn't find or do because this is not going to be our bedroom for long.

And I keep getting tired in the evening, I don't know why. It's a weird phenomenon cause I don't usually get dead tired in the evenings. I mean, something's not very right with me. No matter how much I sleep, it's still not helping. I still wake up feeling lethargic in the morning, and by about 6pm, I usually get so tired that I can't resist napping. I don't usually do this when I was in Sunway. Is it the food? Or is it the environment? Or is it something spiritual?

Church has been so far, so good. It's not what we've grown accustomed to back in FCC, but it's not too different. The only thing is that they always lower the keys of the songs to suit either the worship leader, or the congregation, which I don't know why. Being someone who has been trained not to mess too much with the original writer's intentions for the song, I find it very difficult to sing the songs that have been messed with too much. Imagine singing a song that is originally in B on a F key. That's like, changing the whole feel of the song. The verse is sung with gusto because they sing it on the higher octave, and the chorus is somewhat built-up to a deflating disappointment because they sing it in the lower octave as opposed to the opposite in the original song. This I simply cannot live with. For those who know what I'm talking about, trying singing 'All Creation Cries to You' in F.

And I am taking up a primary role in the Boys' Brigade in Church. I've left the thing for 10 years now, and suddenly, I am called back to it. I guess God does have a whacky sense of humour. I mean, I have been trained as a Boy in discipline and in ruggedness, and then I have been called out of that into the Cell System, something that is totally social, and non-rigid like a uniformed body, and back again into the rigidity of the whole thing. It's like a counter shock to the system. I have simply forgotten how to act as a disciplinarian already. I used to be very good at it, but I have changed and moved on from there... and now I find myself back there again.

And I've been washing my clothes by hand since we moved over here. We don't want to get a washing machine first because it's gonna take some extra effort to move it up to Mile 10 when we eventually move up. And since she's pregnant, I am the one who's doing all the washing, and she the cooking. We still haven't gotten used to the economy here in Tawau. We're still trying to find our way around how to budget our daily spending. Then there's the need to buy a fridge, a washing machine, and oh, I must thank God for providing us with a free TV. There's a pastor's dad who plays golf, and apparently the father always wins TV sets from playing in competitions. So there's a few TVs in the pastor's house collecting dust. We are more than happy to relief them of one TV set. Muahahaha...

I guess that's all for now. I can't blog much because most of my time is now preoccupied with washing clothes, sleeping and taking care of a pregnant lady.

And then there's no table to type from. The computer is propped on the floor, the monitor on top of it's own box, and I'm typing from the side of my bed, with the keyboard on my lap.

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