Friday, December 30, 2005

Dec 30th

Dec 30th, today my hubby turn 29, one year older and wiser. we havent plan for anything special this time around, maybe just have a dinner at TGI Friday, or maybe Victoria surprises like what he did for me..
Dec 30th, friday- last working day for 2005...welcome 2006, maybe everything will be better and wonderful

Friday, December 16, 2005

Penang to Pulau Besar

In few hours time, one bus full of our family from Penang will be in Malacca for family trip. they are somewhere in Perak at this moment. i am not sure how will i handle the situation, what to cook on sunday for thirty people? i dont think i have enough cutlery...and enough confident to cook something extravaganza..maybe i go for something safe and simple...hopefully they will arrived safely..

Cross culture

We just came back from Taipan for a 'kenduri bersunat', the big day will be tomorrow at a private clinic. i am supposed to cook fried rice tonite but at last i got something that i craved for: beriani, chicken, mutton dhalca, achar and salad thairu (yogurt mixed with sliced cucumber, carrot and onion). most of the dishes if i am not mistaken are actually a southern india recipes. not many people can cook a nice beriani, the most important ingredients is the rice, and the measurement of each spices, there are some beriani that taste funny or too sweet smell..until now i haven't tried cooking beriani because there are too many steps in order to get a perfect meal. anyway the food was good but that i don't know how to thank the host due to communication breakdown, i can't speak tamil and they can't speak malay or english. so we ended up smiling to each other. the only person who can speak well each language is the husband but he was not around, therefore we just sit there talking silently to each other, even my hubby can't really speak tamil. language is very important in a mixed culture family, sometimes certain simple words or sentence would easily misunderstood because of the barrier. when we were leaving, one of the lady asked me not rush going home, she asked us to stay for a while, but i thought that since we have shake hands, and i have compliment the host about their food; i was thinking that she was asking we are staying...lucky the other lady could understand a little bit, so she have to explain..when i was at the door step i overheard they are talking and giggle, maybe they are talking about how i confidently giving a wrong answer or maybe they were not talking about me at all... ohh ya...i forgot to mention that they are actually indian national, the husband is malaysian. his mother just arrived from Chnennai yesterday for tomorrows ceremony. I think i should start learning tamil or hindi, i've learned few benggali words coz my father in law is a benggali, but unfortunately my husband are not that fluent either in tamil or how can i learn , practice make word could give a meaning and one word could give a big impression...

Thursday, December 15, 2005


Today, after 1 year and 11 month working on this resort project, i finally have a chance to breath. just handed over this project to a new guy, from now on he will start a new design from scratch, what a relieved...

architecture to public eyes are something glamorous, high standard and easy to get rich, but in reality its totally different. people might think that architect just spend their time at drawing board, designing building. in fact we do a lot more that just design, we have to deal with authority, running a project from design to production, going to site and travel here and there. just imagine we studied for 6 six and ended up taking instruction from client, asking us to do what they want and desire. if we are lucky the project will go smoothly, even though there will be many changes. for those who are not so lucky like me, will definitely suffer entertaining insolvent client, the one that have big ambition with small amount of budget, they dream of building big complex, high standard design or anything that cross their mind without realising that their pocket are thin. sometimes the project that were given to us are interesting on plan, conceptually pleasing but then in the end hard to make it happen. therefore architecture is a tough job, there are many aspect to consider, we don't only think about aesthetic value or facade treatment but also the cost, cultural value, impact on local context because a building is a cultural and civilisation evidence of one society and nation.

one of the problem in malaysia nowadays are due to current scenario where we are over shadowed by developer especially for small practise where the relationship need to be build up. sometimes we need to design according to clients constraint (money)which surely effected the quality of the building. the best example is housing project where the main objective is profit, therefore our society has been mould to believed and accept that our standard requirement of space for malaysian family is only 20' x 70' or 24' x 75'..which sometimes are not applicable. standard single storey house comprises of three bedroom with two bath, kitchen and dining which are very tight and no proper ventilation. money are everything in this world, more money means better quality building, if the developer or the contractor are insolvent, the purchaser are the one who bear the consequences of having poor workmanship house.

anyway architecture is an interesting field, some people say that its a small world, but then you can't get the same experience as we did.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Wedding reception.... and then

just came back from Chai's wedding, it good to see everybody were there. as planned we congreggate at Seremban R&R, then drive straight to Senawang, but then plan changed again due to another friend who wants to join us, so another checkpoint at Projet. it took us about 20 minutes to reached Chai's house. from far we could see white tent with purple scallop..its so sweet.

it was a buffet lunch, so without wasting our time, we just head for the delicious meal..nasi minyak and kurma. in some state they do serve plain rice for those who prefer or worry about their cholestrol level...
bride and bridegroom arrived at 2pm for 'bersanding'ceremony as stated in their invitation card. they are well clad in soft pink songket with purple flower decorating their dias.Chai look so sool...selamba je..but the bestman look nervous, or maybe he's too anxious...well this should be a rehersal for the bestman since he's getting married next year...
in Malay wedding there many custom that we practice today were actually copied from Indian culture; such as wearing henna/ 'inai = 'mehendi'and bersanding ceremony. even though it not our genuine cultur value, it has been practice for century and has become so commercialized.
in the 60's or 70's, the trend were different, where the bride normally wear white gown and the bridegroom look smart in suit complete with a sunglass. i have came across few old photo of those period, its quite interesting, and i shows that trend and culture evolve simultaneous with music and fashion, especially from Western.
most people at that time would only decorate a 'pelamin'/ dias with potted plant especially palm and as for the backdrop they had this colourful light, or some people call it 'lampu kelip-kelip', or in Kedah they call it 'lampu lip-lap'....

food is one of the most crucial item that need extra attention before, during and after the wedding. mostly Malay wedding especially one that held in kampung doesn't cost much compared to Chinese wedding. nowadays people opt for catering where you can choose to have it buffet style or normal ways where guest are being served. this method surely save more time even though its a bit costly, but then the house owner, especially the parents doesnt have to worry wether the food are enough, or the glass, fork and spoon are well prepared. all they have to do is wait for the guest, greet them and collect their 'gift of money'..collection of the day...normally this reception only takes 2/3 days for preparation depends on the scale, and the receprion itself only a day...back then in typical kampung/village they took nearly 7 days to prepare for one wedding..just imagine all villagers will held a meeting, and a committe will be formed, each person has their own task, from preparing meal, washing the dishes, serving, cutting and slicing, grinding,..and for the bersanding ceremony including the akad nikah or in Kedah we call it 'akad khutbah'.. that particular house will be centre of attention during that period, people keep on coming giving sugar, rice, onion, kuih and some might give bunga telur (decorated boiled egg wrap in colored paper : as a give for guest). few days before the big day, tent has been erected, normally using bambo and decorated with colourful flags or state flag. women are busy in the kitchen, young girl preparing 'bunga telur' while men busy slicing meat normally chicken or cow. food were cook a night before or early in the morning on the day itself. even though i was still small at that time but i have observed a lot of interesting things that i could share here. it feels good to think about it even though there are things that i don't like especially the food. in some place beef are cook with banana shoot which make the curry turn grey, and it look terrible and scary..and sort of can they invent all these kind of delicacies..
as for 'hantaran' or gift from bride to groom and vice versa, back then people used what ever available material as decoration, unlike current trend where lots of lace, beads, ribbon and fresh flowers are being used. not only the bride will prepare a few give, her relatives, friends and neighbours will also take this chance to display their skill in preparing hantaran. at that time most of item are food which then be arranged into other form, such as sugar wrapped in red plastic and they make it and arrange with leaves and it became a bunch of grapes, or maybe chillis depends on their creativity, some might turn a humble bath towel into a nice basket. one of the most important item is 'sirih junjung'/ betel leaves..normally older women will prepare this, at my place there were this granny who i call 'u'= shortform for 'tok su'. she was the one who people turn to when it comes to sirih junjung, it will be prepared in two tier, normally a brass plate, placed the betel leaves around it and insert red and yellow flower and jasmine for sweet scent...and also 'kapur and pinang'. the hantaran normally comes in many colours, some people prefer red, or some might choose yellow, therefore there were not well co-ordinated compared to now where people co-ordinate everything in same solour , tone and even a concept for their wedding from bedroom setting, dias, main table, to their cloth and almost everything..
either ways are good and suitable at their own time, even though now we have a lot of choice, we could afford expensive and grand wedding, the most important thing is we are happy and no debt..this the most crucial..

Trip to Senawang

it's a big day today for our officemate (Chai), a wedding ceremony will be held. i have never been to Senawang before but since we have a map, i think it should not be a problem...we are going to congreggate at Seremban tol at 12noon, but before that i have to pick up another friend at Serdang commuter station at 11am...its 10 o'clock now..i have done house chore, while my hubby is still in bed....
there will be about 5 or 6 cars heading to Chai's's gonna be exciting but hopefully its a safe journey..
two years ago during our wedding, one full of bus and 4 cars came from Penang to Alor Setar, 90% are my hubby's relatives..that was a big crowd...well the more the merrier...:)

Thursday, December 08, 2005


i should be thankful that since last month i have escape several incident..i almost hit somebody's car on the way to MPPJ somewhere near Sunway Pyramid..and there were a car who almost hit my back...
this week another thing happen at LDP, the road was slippery, and there was this hilux speeding and suddenly skidded and spinning and hit an Iswara infront of me..that was terrible...nobody hurts but it disturbing, imagine if we are in that kind of situation..that day alone 2 cars had the same situation, another one is in Putrajaya heading to Precinct 11....even though we are a well mannered driver, we still are not lucky driving in Malaysia...its dangerous at almost any route..people always say that we Asian are polite, soft..whatever..but when in comes to driving we forgot all those value...

Sunday, December 04, 2005


its been a busy weekend..too many things to do, my hubby just started working on his weekend project: making a storage we have to clear and sort out all items in that small room. while i got house chore and at the same time i wish that i could go somewhere to unwind...maybe back to penang..had a cucur udang (gurney), or rojak buah at padang kota lama..