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Bit by Bit, Putting it Together

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Pulau Redang, April 2015

“Vern, the email is out! Jom!” My would-be dive buddy Bib, who’s also sitting next to me at work called out when she received the email from our company sports club. We’ve been planning to dive together for awhile now, and since places are limited, we signed up within the same minute the email was shot out. I was partly nervous, as I haven’t been diving since I first...

Get Up, and Try Again.

They say you ought to live amongst the bright lights at least once in your life. You know, those that never go out, no matter night or day. I can testify to that. I see the same ones when I wake, and they accompany me until I go home.  It’s as if they’re trying to make me feel less lonely after a long day. And I’ve been having tons of long, long days. Those that would only leave...

Up in the Air

5C. I seldom get seats this upfront, especially when I checked in just hours before the flight. Maybe many are not too comfortable with flying anymore, given all that has just happened last year. I find it a little odd that my biggest worry until now is just missing my flight. Anything that happens up there, is beyond my control. But I’m wrong. The flight is almost full. I look for my seat...

Start at Home

Mom and I chilling on the couch, busy with our phones. Dad came home from his daily hike, passed us and walked into the kitchen. As she was busily swiping colored candies, she asked nonchalantly. Mom: What do you think dad is doing in the kitchen? Me: Mm… Sounds like he’s cutting up something. Mom: What is it ah? Me: Doesn’t sound like durian… Mom: Doesn’t smell like...

An Open Letter to Dato’ Lee Chong Wei & Dato’ Nicol David

Dear Chong Wei and Nicol, I play a little bit of badminton, and I know nothing about squash, which I think that holds true for many Malaysians. We know in reality that badminton has always been the more popular sport, and sometimes a loss in badminton is sung louder than a win in squash. But we also know, though we often forget, that both of you have the same burden on your shoulders. Each time...

#thankful

I wrote something earlier, but then I took it down. Something didn’t feel quite right. I was rushing through my words, I was being a tad preachy, and I forgot to stop and breathe. So I’d like to just stop for a moment and be thankful. I want to thank all of those who have left me comments, emails and shared my article. When I wrote it, I honestly did not foresee it would get so big...

North Vietnam, June 2014

1. Hanoi The first thing I notice about you is that you’re hot. Sweltering, unforgivingly hot. And humid too. Each time we walk outdoors we’re sweating like pigs. When we’re unlucky, we’re sweating indoors too (darn restaurants with no air-conditioning!).  Much like a woman’s wrath, your summer fury is no joke. You’re ironic too.  You’re a lot like...

Bring Us Home Once More, MAS.

I was an airlines kid. To be specific, I was a MAS kid. My dad worked with the national carrier as a cashier (or an accountant without the degree, we like to call it), and I spent a lot of time (well, a lot more than kids my age back then) prancing around the Penang airport, slurping root beer from the old A&W outlet and playing with colorful plastic balls in KFC. READ MORE

Lost and Found in Hanoi

I will write and post more about my recent holiday in North Vietnam as soon as I get my photos sorted – but something significant happened to me in Hanoi that I thought deserved its own post. So I lost my cellphone in Hanoi. My brand new, 3-month old Sony Xperia that I waited for almost a year to get. Gone. Just like that. But there’s more to the story than just that. A long one. We had just...

That (Corporate) Thing You Do

Occasionally, I get to sit next to nice strangers when I’m aboard a bus or a plane. These are people who emit good vibes that tell you, “Hey, I enjoy a good conversation.” Last weekend, on my way back from Penang to Subang – I was seated next to a middle-aged man whose eyes showed years of experience and displayed a certain kind of warmth. He peered at the...

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