Thank You, God, For Good People.

(Moi blogging from the “comfort” of a hot room, sans aircond and thinking of the nice cool reading room downstairs. Why not blog from downstairs, you may ask? Because, dear readers, there are only a few spots on the house that can receive YES reception….)

I do not believe in coincidences. Everything happened for a reason.

And with that, thank you God, for good people.

Posted in life | Leave a comment

The Day I Acted In A Video

What a blast!

The latest project we did for a client was totally awesome.

The projects started off about 2 months ago when a friend referred us to one of his friends for a new project with one of these local government agencies. One thing led to another and one day we were called to join their team to do the actual pitching. The project was to develop a certain human resource content in a video format which is meant for the SMEs in Malaysia. The real acid test came in as a form of pitching for our ideas to the approval committee who happened to be consisted of several wet towels….

No pressure there….

Move forward to several pitchings, endless meetings, sleepless nights and mugs of coffee, finally we were told that the pitch was successful!

Next many weeks were spent with endless meetings, sleepless nights and mugs of coffee to actually develop the content, and translate them to meaningful script – both in Bahasa Malaysia and English version.

Ok, again like I said..no pressure at all……(gulp!)

The “real” work came in when the creative crew started assembling to shoot the video. It was amazing to see how these creative people behind the scenes work. A dedicated bunch of people, professional and fun to be with – these are the kind of clients you really want to work with again, and again and again. Thanks, Shatish and crew!

The video shoots were planned as 2+1 meaning they plan to shoot the entire scenes within 2 days with 1 extra day. The Project Manager had managed to secure a site for the shoot. It was at this beautiful office of a property development somewhere in the city.

When we arrived on site, the crew were already there. Breakfast buffet was beautifully lined up. I discovered that food is always an important aspect when filming. As you tend to be on site for as long as 18-20 hours, seems that if you have crew with happy tummies, you will do fine. The day started REALLY early. The filming just went on and on and we wrapped up around 2 am. Everyone was exhausted.

The second day started off really early as well. The day went longer but lunch was one heck of this great spread!! The fresh mackerel was cooked with love in this lovely masak asam Melaka style.

We wrap up late…it must have been about 5 am when we did…Now, the thing is, one of the talents was not approved as the HR Manager and the Director had asked me to jump in. Errr….excuses were not working.

So, there I was, acting with the scripts that George and I wrote together….

10712706_10152300042745947_2491384130198644658_n

Well…what can I say…..it was an awesome, awesome, awesome experience! Nothing beats seeing whatever you wrote came out so visually stunning and fleshed out as what you had in your mind….famous actors acting out your script and you were there to saviour every moment….

Did I just say, “Awesome!!!”?

film shooting 1157387_10152303216015947_4720878428537456945_n 1912068_10152303216215947_9047406662821164419_n 10006923_10152303216835947_7220918862654618479_n 10351333_10152300042550947_9015548560242706369_n 10462616_10152303216800947_3316283759726058702_n10613076_10152303217045947_1524861729372032803_nme and nadiame and tony

.

Posted in life | Leave a comment

Cover Your Ass Work Culture

Perhaps the word “ass” captured your attention. I dont know. Maybe the word “culture” did. But then again, I wont know either.

Have you ever step into someone’s office and feel welcome and great? People’s faces are cheerful, doors are opened, you see people around the office and the aura are just so good. Makes you think that you want to sashay into the pantry and make yourself a cup of coffee from that snazzy-looking coffee machine. Then, your mind starts to wonder whether are all these are farce and it is only a facade? What lays behind the great wall,  you start to think?

A couple of years ago, my team and I had the opportunity to work with a construction/developer company for a project. A mid sized public listed company that generates around RM500 million turnover every year. Total population of about 700 odd. The job came about after a simple brief that came from the General Manager who wanted to revamp the performance appraisal form to make it look “sexier” than it was.

The brief came in a form of a piece of paper – literally a very brief piece of paper -the performance appraisal form – that they have used for the last donkey years. A supposedly simple brief turned to be a 5 months engagement. We literally camped in their office. Ate their food, breath the same air they did. Loved every minutes of it.

Staff turn-over we were told, was less than 5%. No one wants to leave. Pay scale was not even up to market standard. I thought who in the world wants to stay? But they did. They stayed, and stayed. And the rotated jobs all over the departments, they changed bosses; bosses transferred them to another department to find the right fit for their staff (or better boss?). Some have worked for the company from Day 1 and that was 25 years ago.

Amazing.

I started talking to the drivers, receptionists, cleaners (they are all local makciks I tell you…), then moved up and right across – executives, secretaries, managers, engineers, site surveyors, Quality Controllers, Workshop guys. You name it. I spoke to them.

And they spoke of the same language.

It is the culture of the company that they like best. When asked exactly what they meant. No one could really tell me exactly what they are but from what I could gather – just some stuff where everyone is happy about which exists in the company and accepted by everyone. It could be from the free daily lunch the company provides, to the very active sports club they have, or the dance class every Wednesday, Monday breakfast with the CEO and top Managements, or could it be the minimum 6 months bonus they enjoy every year. To top it off, some have gone on umrah or haj, thanks to the company for rewarding them for being loyal.

And yet, some companies are just odd….I have observed where there is this culture…where I shall call it “the cover your ass work culture”. Everything is confrontational and the end game is to win. Of something. Of what? I dont know. Recognition? Or facade? Putting face?

Odd.

Like I said.

Posted in blogging, life | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Trees Are Like Good People

trees-are-like-good-people-who-care-for-vikramaditya

 

 

Posted in life, positive thinking | Leave a comment

Sometimes….

I just want to run away from the maddening crowd

I wish that people knew I grieve in my own way

I can just whip out the magic wand and make all the pain and sadness go away

I can snap my fingers and the toxic people in my life disappear

I wish that I had all the staminas and energy I had when I was 17…

I wish that the dresses are not shrinking in size

I hope that people can have more empathy towards animals who cannot speak for themselves

I hope that people realize that as much as you love them, that there is no way in the way you will accept bad behaviour

I wish people know that in order to get people to like you, you have to be nice

Posted in life | Leave a comment

5th Anniversary Dinner

This is a post dated blog. We had our simple 5th Anniversary Dinner, just the two of us at one of our favourite restaurants in the  city – The Hard Rock Cafe.

It had a funny start actually. The guy who took our order did not expect this White Guy and a local looking lady were fasting or even remotely looking like a pair of Muslim couple. He took down our order and then promptly placed a Happy Hour standee on the table, telling George that they have a wonderful happy hour specials.

George did not want to embarrass the guy and told him thanks, and that could he please bring our order for breaking fast because we are going to break fast. He paused for a moment and left. He came the next round to put our cutleries and promptly removed the Happy Hour standee…

chicken and lamb

pulled lamb sandwich Hard Rock Cafe

Caesar salad Hard Rock Cafe

Photo0505

Happy 5th Anniversary, my Love. And may we continue to enjoy food as much as we do in 50 years to come.

Posted in life, love, Malaysia, relationships | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Salam Aidil Fitri

Salam Aidil Fitri 2014

Image | Posted on by | Leave a comment

It Has Been A Wonderful 5 Years! Happy Anniversary, My Darling.

wedding day

 

5 years ago today, I married this wonderful man who left home and make Malaysia his adoptive country. 5 years just passed by so quickly and every day is just an amazing day.

This awesome man is witty, caring, charming, good looking, such a gentleman. His greatest assets to my eyes are his intelligence and empathy.

On this day, I want him to know this – “thank you for being mine and I hope to grow old and grey with you.”

 

 

Posted in life, love, Malaysia | Tagged | Leave a comment

Iftar With Good Friends

Photo0487 Photo0488

 

Simple Iftar dishes enjoyed with some great company.

George and I decided to fetch The Girl to have Iftar together. We had an impromptu plan with Jaja and Emi to eat together for the evening too.

So, rushing back from a meeting that Saturday afternoon, we battled the traffic to get to The Curve area, picked the girl up and drove home.

Simple dishes. There were gulai sardin with potato, scrambled eggs, fried chicken wings, ayam masak kunyit, sauteed green vegetable, salad and sambal salted fish. All these were washed down with pandan syrup and the dessert? Jaja’s awesome mixed nuts brittle with vanilla ice cream.

Alhamdulillah.

Posted in life | Leave a comment

Now Is A Good Time To Show Your Support For MAS

In the days when I used to travel by plane, the home coming flight was mostly with MAS. The fare is cheaper as it was coming home compared to others. I have flown with several others and most of these flights had their own merits.

Founded some 46 years ago, Malaysian Airlines or MAS has been flying across the various continents carrying passengers and at the same time playing the Ambassador to this small nation that “nestled between Thailand and Singapore”, two of the better known countries to many. The well known sarung kebaya with its distinctive design of kelarai or bamboo weave pattern is as Malaysian as it can get.

My own personal experience with MAS has started ever since I was young. My dad used to take me to the then International Airport in Subang and we would stand at the balcony admiring the take-offs and landings. All these images are in black and white in my mind. Everything looked so big. The first opportunity to fly in a plane was only when I was 15. The flight was a  short and sweet 45 minutes from Kuala Lumpur to Penang.

When I was 17 and right after completing my SPM, I headed out to not one, but THREE flight stewardess interview with MAS. In my mind, this was one of the ways to see the world. Being a petite (then) 46kg and only stood at 5 feet tall rendered me not suitable for the position.

About 5 years ago, I was also a part of consulting team to present to MAS a career transition program for its employees as it was going through one of its hardest transformation phases in its journey as an airline.

The MH 17 incident touched the lives and hearts of many nations. 298 passengers consisting of several nationalities as well as birds and a couple of dogs (must have been someone’s pets)  in this tragedy. Numerous FB postings and Tweets went across the cyber space and all looking for answers to this atrocity. But so many were also bashing the national carrier for something that may be beyond their control. The past glory that this national carrier had surpassed many others for many years and it is just so unfortunate that it is now saddled with so many internal issues. The double whammy came in when the MH 370 incident is still unresolved and now we have MH 17 bombing tragedy. We were proud of this airlines when it brought Malaysian glories across the globe years before and when it is kneeling down, it is abandoned by its own people who not only fail to understand why the tragedy occurs but also due to their own political agendas.

Where are your spirit of nationalism? There are so many things in the country that can represent the nationalism spirit and the national airlines is one of it. The tragedy has nothing to do with the “Malay Muslim pilot who is fasting” or nothing to do with some “jihadists who wanted to down the infidels.”

I recall walking the bridge towards the MAS plane en route home. The logo emblazoned across its tail and the familiar “Selamat Datang” greetings makes me feel “almost home”.

Because, no matter where it is, the plane will always take me home.

 

Posted in life | Leave a comment