Wednesday, November 22, 2006


Standing from left: Rox, Cheesecake, Maya K, Achik Spin, Jac, Cik Mimi
Seating from left: Lemeng, Syahril and SK
Absent: Nasha A, Cik Li.

It was scorching hot on our office rooftop but we braced the heat and got together to do this special shot for remembrance. A very happy go lucky and fun people and we got along together like house on fire! BREATHE THE BRAND! LIVE THE BRAND!

D = DAREDEVILS!!!!!!!!!

Monday, November 20, 2006

My Two Heroes

This is the boy with the split personality. He can be so lovey dovey with mom, likes to snuggle up with mom at night even at his age now. Very playful and mischievious! On the other hand, he can be very "garang" especially when his big bro got on the wrong side of him. Often than not the big bro will be reduced to tears! The name is Arif.

The romeo in school. He was caught by mom twice holding hands with a girl, walking around the school compound when others were in class having their lessons. Once during kindies and once in Year 1. Patient with the baby bro most of the time. Likes keeping his emotion to himself and can be very rebellious at times! The name is Hakim.

A Closer Look

Some snapshots I took over the weekend...

The boys' pet hamster...Lava Boy

Scented candle

Flower candles

Decorative Plate

Wilting flower

Fancy a cupcake?

Wilting flower from the sideview

My not-cared-for fern plants

Monday, November 13, 2006

Bali High

A few months back, my family and I had the opportunity to go holiday to Bali. We were pretty excited as that was the first time we went there. We stayed at Discovery Kartika in Kuta and spent the entire days sightseeing, eating and shopping. It was fun! We went as far as Kintamani as well as Ubud, Jimbaran and few other places. Unfortunately, we didn't have the time to visit Tanah Lot :( ... Next time perhaps, S?

Arif and Hakim having fun at the pool.

Hakim & Arif on Kuta beach during sunset

Picture taken from the balcony of our hotel room

Me...on Kuta beach Ubud village

Us...posing in front of a Pura in Kintamani

We had to wear these sarungs to enter the Pura but Arif adamantly refused! (Not macho for him maa...) In the end the caretaker relented and let him enter sans the sarung.


Last Sunday, as expected, S was restless at home. My guess was right. He was itching to go for photography. As I had been working that day and the day before, he was more or less left to his own device. Sensing his restlessness, I suggested that we go to Putrajaya for some quick shots of the buildings and landscape there. I took some pictures (but I am still not that satisfied with the results though). Anyway, here they are...

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Ap Kaise Zardar?

Zardar (standing) with Arif and Ajab the chokidar on our rooftop in Zamzama, Karachi. (Pic by S)

The year was 2005. S was sent for posting to Karachi, Pakistan. So, there we were, the kids, S and I had our first taste of life in a foreign country. So foreign that we could not imagine how it was going to be. Anyway, it was during this stint there we met a man called Zardar, a Pakistani man from Peshawar. He was to be S's driver.

When we first met Zardar, it was when he drove up to the lobby of Sheraton Hotel where we had been staying for 2 weeks while waiting for our stuff to be shipped in from Malaysia. After two weeks of being driven around by an AVIS driver, Zardar was certainly "different". To be honest, I was scared of him then. He looked intimidating with his moustache and unkempt look. And he drove like a maniac too! (Honking and and high beam flashings were nothing unusual to Karachi drivers apparently). To make matters worse, he could not speak a word of English! "Oh dear.." I thought.

A few days later, Zardar turned up at our house as he usually did every morning, this time looking different. This time he was clean shaven (save for that moustache), with neat, shorter hair and pressed shalwar kameez. We were pleasantly surprised. All the more surprised when he greeted S with "Good Morning Kamar Saab". In English! Kamar Saab is Mr. Kamar(ul) in Urdu by the way. I was excited. Zardar knew a bit of English after all! Then I spoke back to him (in English of course) and Zardar just looked puzzled...Hahaha, he couldn't understand what I was saying. Apparently the "Good Morning" bit was just something he has just picked up and nothing more!

One week later, after communicating in sign language I thought to myself that this had to stop. It was frustrating when we couldn't understand each other. I made a pact with him. I would teach him English and in return he would teach me Urdu. He agreed excitedly and a couple of months later, he spoke a smattering of English and I, Urdu. It came to a point when we were in a conflict when he refused to speak in Urdu and I refused to speak in English! In the end we still spoke to each other in two different languages! Hahaha...that was so funny!

Zardar turned out to be a very hardworking man. He will come to the house early in the morning and set out to do his daily duties. Wash the car, send the kids to school, come back to the house, send Kamar Saab to the office, come back again, send the laundry to the Dhobi Wallah, run errands, bring "Madam" (ehem..that's me) to wherever she wants to go to kill her time (either window shopping, visiting Malaysian friends or grocery shooping at Aghaz). then pick up the kids and Kamar Saab back to the house for lunch and on and on and on....His work seldom ended early in the night. There were times when he had to work really late especially when we had to attend official functions. He would wait around by the roadside with other drivers and never once, he complained about his long hours. Sometimes we really took a pity on him but we had no choice because S didn't have Karachi driving license and besides, driving in Karachi was simply out of the question. One must have the heart of steel to be able to drive around in Karachi. The traffic was just insane!

"Madam" spending her rupees at Naveed's...(Pic by S)

Zardar, carrying Arif. (Pic by S)

Zardar was also popular with my kids. They simply adored him. He would spend his free evenings playing basketball and cricket with them. He would go to the shop and get candies for them. When Arif was sick, I remembered him offering to sleep over at the servant's quarters just in case we needed to go to the hospital in the middle of the night. And we did go to the hospital that night and were so thankful that he was around then.

Zardar also liked to play and joke around with his Kamar Saab. They shared secret jokes in the car and laughed out loud together, often leaving me wondering at the back of the car what they were laughing about. S would sometimes play basketball with him and show some karate chops to him as Zardar's favourite movies are kung fu movies. "Chinis movies" he would say....hehehe.

Zardar would also occasionally helped me in the kitchen and also helped fixed stuff around the house. We actually have another helper (a chokidar) to help me at home but I was more comfortable having him to help me out. He was a pleasant and hardworking person and everybody in the house liked him.

When it was time for us to leave Karachi and moved back to Malaysia, Zardar was as cheerful as usual. At least he appeared to be cheerful. But we knew that he was sad. We had bonded with him and we were very sad to leave him. We persuaded him to visit us in Malaysia and he excitedly agreed to do so. But until the last moments before we left, we still failed to get visa clearance for him.

So, good bye Zardar. We hope to see you in Malaysia one day. We will definitely take you around KL but bear in mind you will definitely not be behind the wheel this time! Not with your driving style, you will never survive the roads here in Malaysia. You could end up in the hospital not because of an accident or anything but because you would end up being beaten by our road bullies for all your high beam flashings and honkings!!!

"Ap Kaise Zardar?" (How are you Zardar?)

Flora In Perspective

It was at someone's house during those Hari Raya open houses when I sneaked out to the garden and took these pictures...There I was, clad "demurely" in a kebaya and sarung but with a camera knapsack on my back, snapping away! Hahaha...

Sunset At Tanjung Aru

I think it was a couple of years back, when I was sent to Kota Kinabalu on business when I had the opportunity to capture the stunning sunset at the Tanjung Aru Shangri La in KK. After a hard day's work I retreated to the hotel and took the chance to check out the place. They say that KK has one of the most beautiful sunsets and I think I couldn't agree more. These pictures were taken with my old Fujifilm digital camera (then, I wasn't into photography yet...). Nevertheless, I would like to share these pictures with you...

These people came out at dusk to light up the torches and then performed fire dance on the beach. It was awesome!

Monday, November 06, 2006

There's Always A Beginning...

Me and my new buddy

That's me...someone who has just discovered life through the view of a lens...the camera lens that is...hehehe..Not bad. Not bad at all. It all happened quite suddenly. It was a couple of days before Hari Raya when my dear S dragged me to Pertama Complex. Pertama Complex??? Yuck! Of all the places, that's one place I loath going to. The traffic, the crowd, not to mention the choice (or rather the lack of it) of things to shop...what do we girls hope to shop there anyway? Sulkily (but I was sensitive enough not to show it...) I followed S to the said place. I knew what he was up to....the only place there that attracted him was the camera shop!

You see, S is an ardent fan of photography...kinda obsessed with it to be more accurate. He already owns 2 cameras! I never could comprehend why a person needs so many cameras. He has the F100 and the D100. And at that point of time in Pertama Complex, I had the feeling that this was not just a "look, see" excursion. He was going to add more to his already bulky camera bag. Hmmm.....yup, true enough, voila! the chinese camera shop man whipped out a D200! Oh..oh...I thought.

An hour later after lots of oohhs and aahhs, we left the shop a few thousand ringgit poorer! We left with not just a D200 but with a D50 as well! The D50? It's not his. It's mine! Me, the one person who really wasn't interested in any hobby in particular (save for shopping..hehe). Me, the one person who was perplexed by S's need to go out to snap away. You see, S is the kinda guy who will sulk and sulk if he didn't get his fix of snapping pictures. And S is the kinda guy who will sulk more if he didn't get anybody to accompany or rather join him on those photography trips. So, what is S to do? Recruit a "potential" photo buddy! S presented me the D50 and said, " My Anniversary gift to you". I was gobsmacked. What? Anniversary gift? I would rather get an expensive watch (equivalent to the money spent on the D50) or even a trip to Koh Samui or even Bali again. But the ever gracious me, protested only once and then thanked him for the"gift" thinking what the h*ll was i going to do with that camera.

Well, to cut the story short, few weeks on, here I am..a trigger happy gal. Hahaha! My first "project" was during the recent Hari Raya. Snap, snap, snap. Snap here. Snap there. Almost everybody was not spared. It was more a point and shoot kind of picture taking. I was on the first phase of bonding with my camera. Some pics came out ok and some were absolutely Trash Bin material...hehe. The second project, it was a trip to the zoo. I organised the trip. With the boys in tow. Not so much because I was treating the boys with the zoo trip, rather because I wanted to snap away. This time more seriously done with the correct filters, telephoto lens, apetures and shutterspeeds. Yeay! I had fun! Needless to say so did my dear S. Some pictures came out beautifully (well, at least to my beginner's standard). I was hooked! More locations and objects to discover perhaps?? Bring it on S!!!

Feel free to browse through some of my best production (ehem!) so far...

Birds of a feather flock together...

Boat by the lake...

I may be slow, but I can be mean..!

Whatcha lookin at huh?

S, engrossed with his new toy

S with his D200