Value of Money

Yesterday, I went to Coliseum Cafe in KL. Nostalgia… not a good one.

I still vividly remember the first time I stepped foot into the restaurant when I first started working 14 years ago.

I was a lowly paid assistant in a management firm, with starting salary of RM1,000. Once you minus the EPF and what not, I was left with only RM800 to spend per month. I have to foot the phone bill for my house since I was the one using the internet the most. I need the money for my daily commute to work via the bus… and also breakfast and lunch money, sometimes dinner if I had to work late. It’s a miracle that those friends from outstation – have to pay rent on top of their daily expenditure have to put up with such small budget!

Not even two weeks into the job, my colleagues decided to have lunch at Coliseum. Truth to be told, I didn’t know the prices here as I hardly go out during that time. I was shocked to see the pricing on the menu. A steak at Rm39.90 or was it RM40? I couldn’t simply afford to pay for the steak! I could if I wanted to but then, should I be paying that much?

So I settled for a very sad Rm15.90 chicken ham sandwich while my other colleagues happily tucked into their chicken chops and steaks. They asked me why didn’t I order the steak as it’s a highly recommended dish in the restaurant? I sheepishly said I wasn’t that hungry. I could have said I couldn’t afford it but my ego would be at stake! Who knows? My boss could have paid for my meal? Haha! *Note to WWF and TBH. Haha!

After that day, I vowed I would make enough money to return to eat at this restaurant. I never did till yesterday.. perhaps I was too intimidated by the disgruntled looks from the old waiters? The lack of parking space? The jam?

So yesterday, my cousin sis and a friend decided to brave the rain to go downtown to Pertama Complex to get their badminton shoes, I decided to go with them. After which, we planned to go to have a meal at Coliseum. I was quite excited, frankly speaking! But my excitement was not properly reciprocated. It was a let down.. service wise is good – they replaced the old waiters with young people and foreign workers….the chicken chop is not too bad… but the steak… bleh.

Am not dedicating this post to Coliseum. I am just wondering how the young people these days afford to eat lavishly at fancy restaurants even more expensive than Coliseum! Also, designer coffees starting at Rm10 per cup… everyday…. and some people even commented they cannot live without those coffee… with utmost respects to coffee lovers and barristas, I simply couldn’t comprehend drinking such expensive coffee on daily basis! What happen to good old fashioned Aik Cheong kopi-O?

The moment I logged into my instagram, my feed would be flooded with photos of coffee and expensive food from young people who just started working.. some of them don’t even work (whom I know personally)..

I guess they are lucky to have rich parents. It’s splendid to have rich parents.. but it’s better to have parents who could teach you on the value of money.


When I was little, I was already a worry wart. I worried about school, exams and what is going to happen to me and siblings if my parents were gone, especially my mom. I worry that my mom would stop breathing in the middle of the night and would not wake up the next day. Sometimes at night, I would put my index finger in front of her nostrils to check if she’s still breathing. Or just glanced over to the chest and stomach to see if they were moving up and down.

When my cousin sisters and brother were born, I would check their baby cots every 5 minutes to see if they are alive. I would do the same thing, putting my finger across their noses to check or watched their small chests moving up and down. Yes.. I was that obsessive!

When I was in college, I loathed studying. I totally hate exams and I especially hated it when I had to turn friends down from going on trips or partying because I had to study. I was that serious. Have to get exams or things over with, then only I could go partying. By the time I passed my professional exams, most of my college friends had gone their own ways.

When I started working, I enjoy it so much that I wish I started working earlier. No more exams.. no more text books… no more worries.. so I think. I have to say, I think I am quite suited for working because by the time I finished work and used up my brain juice, I would be just too tired to even think of anything at night. My days of insomnia were over. Thank God!

Then real life happened. Oh boy. Nothing would prepare anyone for this thing called life. I would like to think my life is generally fine, it could be better? Nevertheless, I am very grateful that I have been blessed with a solid family and friends’ support, a roof over my head, a generally healthy social life – even though I think I am slowly moving towards becoming a reclusive hermit.

We’ve been through family tragedies – death, sickness, imprisonment, birth defects, surgeries and some other things that I couldn’t even mention here but, we somehow managed to come out from all these shit triumphant.. earning life battle scars and added another feather to our caps!

I would like to urge my friends who are suffering from life turbulence to hang on, gear up! Get your guns and grenades ready for life battle. We must do our best to fight for the things we believe in, to fight for the life we wanted, and fight till our very last breath.

If things are getting too unbearable or getting out of hand, we must always remember that we have choices. It’s never easy to make a call but, no matter what our decisions maybe – whether or not we may or may not regret it later, at least we do something about it.. rather than just sitting there, with both arms folded and just watch things falling apart. It’s better to cut losses earlier than to lose everything in the end.

Every life is worth fighting for. Don’t just give up. And comrades, I got your back.


I wished a friend happy birthday on Facebook and he replied thanks. He added another sentence to it. “Another year closer to demise!” What a grim thought, say you and me! So, I replied him, “The coffin contains dead people. Not old people.” He laughed and agreed that is actually entirely true.

Not long later, my bro in law told me there was an accident nearby our office in front of the police station. A Wira hit a School Bus. By analyzing the wreckage of the Wira beyond recognition and also, the school bus turning turtle, he concluded either one of them must be driving in break neck speed and not obeying traffic rules. The school bus driver was a lady – unfortunately was someone quite familiar to us. We don’t really know her. But she used to drive past our house during lunch hour, dropping off a student at the row of houses in front of my house.

We got to know the bus belongs to this aunty because the opposite side neighbour came to look for us, asking if we know anyone who could assist to drive her child to school. Yes, the school bus aunty is dead. We heard that her own daughter was also in the bus when the accident happened, together with another student. Both were injured. We pray for their recovery and strength to overcome this trauma.

It’s true that we can only plan, but God will decide for us.. yesterday has come to past, we might not see tomorrow, so might just as well live for today. So, why worry?

Just remember to set our affairs right as we will never know when our fire would be snuffed out in just an instant. Death doesn’t always come with a warning.

Happy New Year 2014!

I spent the last day of the year in the comfort of my cousin’s home. I think I did the same thing last year – watching fireworks from her house on the 9th floor. Had a pretty good 360 degrees of fireworks view – even if they are too far away! Nice view from KLCC, the KL tower, the Curve.. and sporadic individual homes’ fireworks! I think last night’s fireworks superseded all fireworks the year before as they lasted more than 5 minutes! Followed by families in Selayang who have too much money to burn! I think later this CNY, there will be another round of crazy fireworks now!

I miss the days spending countdown at Datin’s place, watching fireworks from a distance at his balcony and watching the celebrations in Dataran Merdeka on TV. I heard that last night Dataran Merdeka’s crowd was really huge and it was filled by people rising up to protest the hike in prices in everything that affected the livelihood of all Malaysians. It is indeed frustrating and disappointing (and very, very angry!!!)  to have a stupid government governing an otherwise great nation! We need fresh blood and new ideas, corruption free leaders to lead the country! I sincerely pray for the betterment of the nation. I hope Malaysia would improve NOW and would be a better place for every individual living here irregardless of race, creed and religion.

Fellow blog readers, let’s pray for the betterment of our nation to our respective Gods. Let’s hope drastic positive changes would take place. Let us all believe in each other that our harmony and togetherness do not falter due to threats of the “leaders” that supposed to unite us but did otherwise. Let’s pray for new wave of changes in the minds of the people to embrace differences and celebrate diversities! Let’s pray that we will continue to protect the sovereignty of our nation from corruption, nepotism, greed and wastage!

Wishing you and your family, a year of love, good health, success and much happiness. Happy 2014!

Thoughts After A Weekend in Singapore

I was away in Singapore for the long Raya weekend. Managed to snag a good deal on flights and off we went. I sort of forgotten that, the long weekend of Raya coincide with Singapore’s national day. Only when I got to my friend’s house, I realized it’s National Day. Singaporeans are really patriotic lot. I heard you have to put your name for balloting if you wish to join the National Day parade! A cab driver once told my friend that, he has tried for 10 years and somehow didn’t get pick! So most of them spent time glued to the TV to watch the entire National Parade and stuffs. And after that, the next day, I joined my friend’s family members for lunch and they were all talking about the National Day parade! So much sense of pride in every Singaporean!

I wish I could say the same for myself. When I was little, I would wake up early and wait for the Merdeka parade on TV with my family. We always look forward to watch the parade on TV as we were in Taiping then. We always look forward towards the marching of the army – Angkatan Tentera Malaysia as my dad was an army back then. I couldn’t remember if he did join the national parade though.

Now, as I grow older, I couldn’t be bothered to go to Merdeka Square. Not that I am NOT patriotic. I think patriotism is not measured by how many times you attend the national parade. Or how you could recite the pledge to the country by heart or how well you sing the national anthem.

I think patriotism is doing my part for the country, by paying taxes to build the country. Helping fellow brothers and sisters in the country who are in need. By being mindful of your actions and words as they do reflect your principles and what you believe in. Going the distance to contribute in whatever way we can to give back to the society.

With the escalating crimes to the point of alarming state, ridiculous insensitivity and overly insensitivity over minute things, lack of tolerance, lack of respects and understanding are eating into our society. I know the authorities are trying their “best” to tackle the issues but their best simply couldn’t cut it anymore. I think we need to demand for extraordinary measures in such trying times. There is no use of political parties paying lip services to the people when they couldn’t do what they say or promise. What use is there with the finger pointing the obvious while everyone is just crossing their arms doing nothing when a fellow brother or sister is crying for help? I wish the so called politicians and authorities would stop putting the blame on everyone and everything but themselves and get their asses to find solutions immediately!

I long for the day I could walk out from my house and join the Merdeka Parade or other festivities without having to keep looking over my shoulder for imminent danger. I long for the day I would be more than happy to invite my foreign friends to our beautiful country without constantly worrying for their safety while they are traveling here.