Friday, May 30, 2008

Damiral Grill....Makan-Makan in Alor Star

Another makan-makan Thursday.... actually the choice was either Pizza Hut at Tesco or Damiral Grill. Put it to a vote... finally decided on Damiral Grill. The other 3 had already been there once and it's supposed to be ok. Can't miss it cos it's located in one of the new shops beside the road, Jln Pegawai area, near CIMB. The restaurant was practically empty when we arrived.... guess we are always the early birds... either that or people come in later. Anyway, the decor is okay-lah. Actually quite nice. But the music or tv was way too loud. The echo was quite annoying. They should have thought of some curtains or drapes to dampen the sound.
Since we were the only patrons...we took our time in ordering. They had lobster on the menu...I couldn't resist it...so I ordered. But the order was actually a disappointment. It looked okay but when I dug into the lobster...I couldn't really find any lobster meat. The whole concoction was just a cheesy blob. And as I was eating, I actually saw a small prawn. Sheesh!! That shouldn't be, right? Small prawns in place of lobster??? If it had been udang galah pieces, I don't think I would have been able to tell the difference much. One thing for sure, I definitely will not order this again if I ever do go back.
The soup in the bread was okay though. I think all the 6 of us enjoyed 'tearing it up' and dipping it into the bread. Soup was thick and tasty... has to be thick I supposed. Otherwise, the bread will be leaking soup! 8) The mangkuk went into our stomachs too. No wastage at all. Every single drop of soup and crumb disappeared!
The other orders were steak for Huan and lasagna for Siah. Ling and Alyssa had the Combo Platter. The food was quite alright if you are not too fussy! Don't bother asking about getting your steak well done, rare or medium rare cos I think they only do it one style....cooked! The food is not that spectacular but not that bad either. On my way out, I did comment to the cashier about the lobster order. Told him that I couldn't really find any lobster in the dish and the little prawn. For RM42.90, one actually can't expect much. But if they are going to say it is lobster they are serving, then they better make sure that it is lobster and not some udang kecil. Otherwise, serve the real thing and charge the fair price!

Whatever it is....it's still an okay night out ....... for the good company. We ended up in Tesco after dinner. The whole place was still swamped with people. Guess the Tesco fever is still there!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Die, Die Must Use Handphone....

You would think that smoking is a bad enough scourge of the society....insidiously and silently killing millions of people....and these people 'willingly want to die' for their smoke. Now they say the mobile phone will be an even worse killer... cos you cannot see or feel the radiation.....

Seems those who use the mobile for more than 10 years double the risk of brain cancer ..... aiya! So the old adage remains, yah?? For everything, there is always a price to be paid...... but for the majority of us.... we kenakan ourselves because of our own foolishness. By then, no amount of regrets can change things. For many, they sleep with their handphone too...how bad can it get some more? Handphone follow everywhere....even to the toilet!

So, die-die must use handphone...... really you can die!!

It's how they wear it..

From The Star today...so it boils down to how the uniform is worn. Read the last line...challenging for boys to sit in the same classroom as the girls who wear revealing uniforms.

How are we painting the guys, huh? Are we talking about people or animals here? Guys are that 'buyable'? Wah! Like that, then better to let the gals do the running of corporations, companies, even the country since they are 'stronger'.

Don't know how to make sense of things...on one hand, we seem to be progressing ahead. On the other hand, we seem to be stuck in this feudal mindset...

Uniform’s fine but it’s how the girls wear it

By IAN MCINTYRE

KOTA BARU: It is not the school uniform that is an issue but how Muslim schoolgirls wear it, says two PAS state executive councillors.

They claimed that the schoolgirls' transparent tops revealed too much, thus arousing the men.

State Youth committee chairman Abdul Fatah Mahmud said in an interview that schoolgirls must cover their aurat that was the standard of Islamic attire for females besides ensuring clothes were of the proper thickness.

Abdul Fatah expects that in future, attire among Muslim women will no longer be an issue once a wide ranging awareness campaign is launched to instil in them the proper mindset.

“We do not want to force, but to educate, them to meet the obligations of Allah where the central theme is covering their aurat. Proper Islamic attire is one of the demands in the religion,” he added.

Abdul Fatah, whose wife is a teacher, said Muslim girls must understand they were displaying gratefulness to Allah by wearing the required attire.

State Women Affairs committee chairwoman Wan Ubaidah Wan Omar said there was no problem with the baju kurung uniform, but Muslim schoolgirls must wear it according to Islamic teachings.

“Their underwear cannot be visibleand their hair and neck must be covered up by donning a tudung (head wear).”

Proper attire should be compulsory for Muslim woman, and the Education Ministry should monitor it instead of just dismissing the comments by National Islamic Students Association vice-president Munirah Bahari, she said.

Wan Ubaidah said it was “challenging” for schoolboys to sit in the same classroom with schoolgirls who wore revealing school uniforms.


Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Breakfast and Choices...

We are spoilt for choice when it comes to food. Since it is school holidays now, this was the breaksfast in one of our food forays.

Siah's choice. One roti tisu but it had to be served on 2 plates since it is stretched so thin and long. Served with condensed milk, it's actually kinda nice. Actually anything served with condensed milk is nice...try cream crackers with it. Used to be my favourite when I was a kid. My siblings and I would pour lots of it onto the crackers and just savour it.Son's choice....his favourite way of eating roti canai. Roti pisang...now this is not the usual amount. There're actually 2 pieces of them here. See one plate stacked on the other?? This one takes some getting used to...all the gooey banana and then dipped into the curry. Spicy, sweet, sour, oily...all in one. For me, the first few mouthfuls are always quite nice. Beyond that, can't really describe it...I think the gooeyness gets to me.
Daughter's choice. Tosai telur....safe choice. Quite nice if you want something light but filling.
Mine and Huan's choice. Tosai with puree. This one is a heavyweight cos they stuff lots of puree with potato, chilli, onions into it... One piece of this is enough to last you through lunch also. It's really value for money. RM2 per for this (I think). It's like the price of one meal for 2. 8)
Now there were 2 capati(s) ordered by Ling and mom.... gone missing into their stomachs. So no pics.

And where did we get this??? At Nasmir...they have a chain of restaurant up north. They even have a hotel to their name in Autocity. Anyway, where the above food is concerned, they're actually quite nice.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Dumbed Down by Educational Institutions?

So what do you think of our educational institutions? I am part of the system....have been in it for more than 15 years. I am also a product of that system..one of yesteryears, for 13 years and then another 4 years at one of the local tertiary institutions. So I have spent more than 30 years in this system. Did I get a good deal? I thought so. Had great teachers who inspired me!

So are our kids getting the best instructions in these instituitions now? Are our schools preparing them for life, to be part of the society in a meaningful way? I used to think so but I'm not so sure any more.

Classrooms today are for the most part rather chaotic, unless you are in one of those premier or chosen schools but these schools are not the norm. There are greater numbers of disruptors in the classrooms (problem in the enforcement of discipline??) and they affect majority of the children, indirectly turning them into victims. Kids write off teachers as useless and very often parents and society condone it too. Can't blame them because at one time, majority of those who came into the teaching profession were those who could not find a good positions in the private sector. The best were not encouraged to take up teaching and neither did they want to because of the negative perception. One would be almost ashamed to admit that he/she was a teacher when asked. The failure of our political masters was that they failed to ensure that our institutions be manned by competent and dedicated people.

External rewards and punishment is the order of the day now. Internal acts of conscience is not something that is actively inculcated. We may have more religious classes but for some reasons they don't seem to translate into the expected. How do we know? Social ills involving the young are on the rise.

We push our kids for education excellence. We pump them with knowledge but not bring them up to have wisdom. The goal of education these days seems to be scoring A(s) and not shaping the person holistically...though our National Education Philosophy does espouse that but I think we have fallen short of its ideals. We idealise about JERI (jasmani - emosi - rohani - intelek) or physical, emotional, spiritual and intellectual development but we abandon them in the name of good results. It's all about numbers - the number of passes. Our kids are grilled in school and sent for extra tuitions.....the race for A(s).
There was one year in a rural school in Kedah, the teachers replaced some Standard 6 students with Standard 5 kids to sit for their UPSR. The former were students who were really weak in their subjects. They were quarantined so that no one would know. However, the scam was found out. If that was not a crime, what is? Teachers were the ones who hatched this whole thing out..... Such shame. We were willing to stoop that low. What are we teaching the kids?
Then the crunch comes...they have the A(s) but seem to lack that something. And all of us then lament how unready the young people are to face the world, or how they don't seem to meet the market needs...the list goes on. Classroom lessons are more about memorizing facts than actually meaningful learning. Active literacy and writing skills are on the way down. Walk into most classrooms today and you will find that kids can't even string sentences together let alone, speak well. Critical thinking is a rarity. Yet they can still pass....cos they've been groomed from the mill to pass these standardized tests and elastic adjustment of results.
There was another year that I came across a boy who could not read. He could copy words but they made no sense to him. Guess what? When he sat for his PMR, he passed his Maths. Here, you have a boy who cannot even read, let alone count. Yet he passed his Maths in a standardized test. There are many who can attest to such kind of examples. It's easy...if it's an objective exam, all you need to do is just tell the student to shade just one choice. 60 questions of 4 choices...you will get at least 15 answers right. And the passing grade is so shamefully low that in the end the likelihood of passing is very real. Then these people move on to the next level and find that they still cannot cope. Nothing changes for them but for the teachers and school, a new level of indiscipline takes root.
I would say our educational system is in a rather critical state. We mass produce without much thought to the uniqueness of each individual. We put everyone through the same mill expecting that every product which comes out will be the same. And that is where we failed. We are forcing those with no academic inclinations to stay in school right up to Form 5. They cannot cope with the subjects and become a liability to the school, themselves and by the time they are out in the world, they are set like concrete already. They are dumbed down by the system because many of them would have done reasonably well had they been given the opportunity to learn a skill that they are passionate about. I truly believe in that. There are vocational subjects such as Domestic Wiring, Landscaping, Catering being offered in normal day schools now and these are meant for those who are not so academically inclined. And these students do perform better in such subjects....but places are limited and there are so many more languishing in the academic stream....this is one of the flickers of hope that I see.

All it takes is just one disruptive student to affect another 29 students. And that is happening! Not too long ago, one Education Minister stripped the vocational schools out of our education system and the normal day schools are now saddled with babysitting these non-academically inclined people. It's nightmarish trying to handle such16/17 year olds misfits. So aren't the generation of today being dumbed down by our educational institutions??? My two sen worth!!!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Google Sites

Other half talked about this a couple of days ago...so I decided to check it out in detail today. Google Sites is really a great for keeping track of information and also happenings. Google bought over wiki service Jotspot 2 years ago and has relaunched it in its present form.
Took a look at its offering and I can already think of so many things that we can do with it. For schools, societies can use it as to disseminate information. Members can update and stay tune to the latest everything. Teachers can use it to run a project where students can continually input their ideas and research. It can be used as a notice board too...School administration can use it to keep the teachers informed of the year's programme...time table ... the list goes on.

This is a screenshot from one of their examples....for families to stay in touch.Basically what the apps is offering is nothing very new...after all we have bulletin/forum boards, blogs, personal websites, etc....but this latest offering from Google makes it so easy to set up a website for most of the things that one would like to do. It is the simplicity that is amazing! On top of everything....it is free! Check it out.

Pedra Branca...and Rais says it's a win-win decision

So, it's final. I suspect many expected this decision. After all, our country did present a lousy case and shamed ourselves... doctored a photo and lied in an international court brazenly, some more. This is now theirs... Pedra Branca. Pulau Batu Putih has been pushed into the annals of history. The names sound different but they mean the same. 12 of the 16 judges ruled in favour of Singapore and this decision cannot be contested.

Now Rais, our Foreign Minister says it is a win-win cos our fishermen can now go fishing here.....here as in these few outcrops of rocks. I can't see how this a win-win decision. They got the bigger piece of rock and we got these few batu. Malu only. Shame!

Anyway, our fishing enthusiasts also can now go singgah on this outcrops of rocks and perch themselves there with a couple of fishing rods and pancing ikan also.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Mergong Tesco...2 weeks later

Decided to have some family time together in the evening...in Alor Star where else but Tesco since it's the newest attraction and it is supposed to be the 2nd biggest Tesco in Malaysia..... and also, we have not walked every aisle in it yet.

Some random shots... from the back of TescoThe line is still there at Big Apple ...actually it is even longer now. Looks like Alor Star has just discovered real donuts. 8)
Trying to walk all the aisles and came across this...FREE ABC BISCUITS!!!! They forgot to price the biscuits...You want chicken 'thight-thight' or loose-loose???As you can see, Tesco is still jammed packed with people after 2 weeks. Other shopping complexes very empty now...Food court also full... Had sizzling mee which didn't sizzle and son had nasi phatprik. RM5.20 and RM4.90 for both. The portions are rather small too. For that price, I think it is better to go to Noodle Station. 2 glasses of drinks at RM1.70 each, more ice than the actual drinks. Other half gave up trying to get something for himself cos it was too crowded. So we kongsi our food. These days it is expensive to eat out.Our angkasawan is on the plastic cups....which all end up either being recycled or in the tong sampah....that's where our space programme seems to be heading at the moment.

Before we left, we bought some donuts....got coupon for free donuts mah...see, got caught in the mentality of freebies. Ended up spending more actually! Definitely failed to heed Pak Lah's call to change our lifestyle! But if we don't spend, then how to menjana ekonomi??? Retailers all mah tutup bisnes.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

And they say the problem lies with the uniform...

From today's The Star...2 interesting articles.

School uniform sexy, says group

KUALA LUMPUR: A Malaysian group condemned the uniform worn by girls at government schools, saying it encouraged rape and pre-marital sex.

“The white blouse is too transparent for girls and it becomes a source of attraction,” National Islamic Students Association of Malaysia vice-president Munirah Bahari said in a statement.

“It becomes a distraction to men, who are drawn to it, whether or not they like looking at it,” she said, calling for a review of uniform policy so that it did not violate Islamic ideals.

In multicultural Malaysia, home to majority-Muslim Malays as well as ethnic Chinese and Indians, female students at government schools have a choice of wearing a white blouse with a knee-length skirt or pinafore.

They may also wear a “baju kurung” and a headscarf is optional for Malay students.

Munirah said that “covering up” according to Islamic precepts was important to fend off social ills, including “rape, sexual harassment and even premarital sex.”

“This leads to babies born out of wedlock and, to an extent, even prostitution,” she said.

“Decent clothes which are not revealing can prevent and protect women from any untoward situations,” she said, suggesting that girls wear a blouse of a different colour or with an undergarment.

However, the girls themselves also came in for criticism, with the association saying that some used the white blouse to lure men.

“This is the source of the problem, where we can see that schoolgirls themselves are capable of using this to attract men to them,” Munirah said.

“This could see them getting molested, having premarital sex and all sorts of things.” – AFP

Go figure what the minuscule brain above is trying to get at.

And this by Dina Zaman, an interesting insight.

Today’s men not like our fathers

If before divorce was due to infidelity, abuse or disenchantment, nowadays the war cry among young women is that their husbands are lazy and irresponsible.

ON MY flight back to Kuala Terengganu last week, I sat next to two young girls who were attending a company seminar. When they heard that I worked for a non-governmental organisation, they said: “Akak, please advise us, we have a problem.”

One of the girls told me her predicament: her husband now uses condoms with her because he’s been sleeping around, and because he didn’t know where the girls have been and because he loves her, the wife, he’s protecting her. From disease.

Wow. Is that love or what?

So I sat there and did an Oprah. When we separated at the airport, I thought to myself: I should have become a Syariah lawyer instead of a writer.

Over the past one year, so many people I knew divorced or were in the act of getting a divorce. If it weren’t the husband catching hold of me at the magazine shop, to ask me to speak to his errant wife, it would be my women friends calling or meeting me to break the news.

Sometimes my readers email me and tell me things. It’s odd, but you never get used to the news of a divorce. To me, it’s heartbreaking to hear of a marriage failing beyond repair.

The perennial question these women ask me, as well as their parents, my parents and aunts and uncles: what has happened to this generation of Malay men? “Why are they not like our fathers?”

My Auntie K’s answer to this was that there was too much MSG in all the food the men ate at the mamaks. My father chuffed up and said, of course no man could be like him; he (my father) was The Original Malay Man. And my mother and some of her friends wonder why, why, why.

If before divorce was due to infidelity, abuse or disenchantment, nowadays the war cry among young women is that their husbands are lazy, irresponsible and just want a flashy lifestyle.

Since their wives are educated and working, duit rokok boleh la tibai kat bini (the wives can support them). And what even boggles the mind is that despite the lack of cash and employment, some of these men actually have girlfriends.

I don’t get it. What kind of woman would want to date a lazy sod? I certainly don’t.

There’s the husband who beats up the wife to the point that her parents have to intervene, as he was starting to abuse his own child.

What does the husband say to the in-laws? If they want him to stop and to divorce the wife, pay him RM1mil. The parents actually do, because they want to save their daughter’s and grandchild’s lives.

Then there’s the harried wife with children who’s been married for over eight years. Every morning, the suami tersayang goes to work in a suit.

One day the ah longs appear at the doorstep and threaten her and the kids and she finds out the truth: the blinkin’ monkey never worked in his life, and had been borrowing money from the sharks. He also had a gambling habit and a “‘lifestyle'.

Then there’s the young cute husband who’s creative. He’s in “media”. Not only does he sleep and eat and live off his in-laws, later on, it is discovered that he bought his foreign degree from the Internet. Yes, he forged it for a few American bucks.

Even stranger, the marriage was not consummated. Last I heard, “I’m still a virgin, Kak Dina.” Aiyoyo. (Why marry-lah if you’re not going to consummate it?) Oh yes, the husband said in a marriage, there’s no sex. Go figure.

He’s too lazy to pray. He doesn’t want to work. He wants to stay home and watch TV. He does not contribute to household expenses. Baru nak apply for tender dah ada GRO. He expects the wife to pay for everything. He expects the father-in-law to pay for everything.

I go to usrahs given by ulamas such as Ustaz Asri, Ustaz Kariman, Ustaz Arifin. You name it.

Even at the usrahs, everyone is asking why divorce is so high and why the current generation of Malay boys are not responsible. Unlike their fathers. And fathers-in-law.

The funny thing is, when the wives give up trying to save their marriages and dive head-on for a divorce, these irresponsible boys suddenly rediscover religion and start behaving like pompous gits.

At the court, one soon to be ex-husband tells the judge the wife is not a good Muslim. Sometimes she does not perform all her five daily prayers.

The soon to be ex-wife then shoots back, if she’s not an isteri mithali what about him? His Friday night out with the boys and coming back reeking of beer and cheap women’s perfume?

He then gets angry and tells her that he is STILL her husband, and he’s a Malay man, a Muslim one, so she better shut up. She tells him to go s***w himself and hopes he gets AIDS.

The judge? Geleng kepala kot.

Just when I, Little Ms D, think it’d be nice to REMARRY, and then my mother can stop pestering me to marry the boyfriend, a story like this crops up and I run off. Marriage is for the brave.

The quality of Malay men can’t have deteriorated that badly, no?

I see an old friend for tea. She looks like a walking aubergine. Brinjal to you. Her husband beats her up for the heck of it and to discipline her. I ask her, why did she marry him?

She tells me: “Dina, I’m like you. Our fathers were diplomats. We had non-Malay boyfriends. But at the end of the day, semoden-moden kita ni, we think of God. So I married him because of bangsa dan ugama. I married a Malay man because I thought of akhirat.”

She weeps and tells me: “Fat lot of good that did me.”

I don’t know why the new generation of Malay men are not like my father and his friends. They are practising Muslims, they’re successful, and they’re monogamous. They don’t beat up their wives. They brought their daughters up to rule the world.

I’d marry someone like my dad and his friends, but that’s disgusting. Can you imagine having a son-in-law the same age as your dad?

So yes. Please. Someone, answer us. Why aren’t Malay men these days like our fathers?

Product of the system???



Wednesday, May 21, 2008

What Is Responsible Parenting these days?

The scope of parenting I supposed should be quite clear. But these days...I get little muddled. Good parents are supposed to do what is good for their kids....but what is good, huh? Cos kids don't think good of what parents think is good. And then, there are parents too who think they make good decisions which are actually not good for their kids.Life for this generation of teenagers (I won't include the younger kids cos they are generally easy to manage) is quite different. Kids today are busy trying to do what their friends are doing, own what their friends are owning, go where their friends are going, etc, etc...the list is inexhaustive. And they pursue it unrelentingly because of their newly awakened awareness to desires. Dealing with an unrelenting teenager who wants something is tiring due to a couple of reasons.
  1. They pursue it unrelentingly.
  2. They have very little self control.
  3. The power of peer pressure.
  4. The raging hormones.
At that age, their parents become their 'enemies' whilst their friends are bosom buddies. Thus begin the unrelenting wars at home...of willpower. It takes a lot out of the parents...this whole process. And it's a long one.

I am grateful to my parents for standing by me all those difficult years. It must taken quite a lot from them to make sure that my siblings and I make it in life. My mom, who had very little education, realised the importance of education and stressed in us its worth. Dad was usually busy working, to make ends meet and to put us through our education. My siblings and I will always be forever grateful for their sacrifice. Our lives are better because of them.

Today's parents are busier and like the kids, they too have many distractions now. Like the kids, they too want their right to their time for various activities.... Therefore, there is always this tendency to take the easy way out. For the younger ones, there are always the maids. For the teenagers, it's easier to just give in to their wants...... why get extra headaches...

Life is getting better with all the conveniences made readily available. Yet moral values are on the decline. Principles! What principles? More babies are abandoned, old folks left to fend for themselves, social problems abound. Take a drive out in Alor Star on Thursday and Friday evenings and very often the main street would be full of Mat Rempits who will be riding their bikes at great speed with no regard to other road users.

It's a vicious cycle. To discipline a child is a painful process for both parties...but it is necessary.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Got tagged...

Got tagged by Planet Kambing.....so here's a quickie on a not so fabulous day.

1. To watch or to participate?
Watch sometimes but will participate if necessary. Life too short to stand as a bystander all the time-lah.

2. Malls, catalogue shopping or the Internet?
Dunno....don't quite trust internet shopping yet, though I think this may be my most favourite form of shopping once I learn to trust it.

3. A bath of a shower?
Yup! Most definitely. In this tropical climate, it'd be crazy not to.

4. To talk to people by telephone, in person or by e-mail?
In person always better but these days, so many people so busy all the time. So have to go ala sms (still telephone, not meh?) Email also will do. Can organize thoughts better.

5. Typing or writing?
Typing...looks neater. Anyway, how to write on a computer, still much faster to type. But still have to write quite a lot. Going paperless is actually a fallacy.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Plants, KFC Containers & Jelly Crystals

I like plants and used to be really crazy about them. Would scout the nurseries around town to look for any plant that was unusual. Even got myself a huge thick 'suitcase' like encyclopedia to learn about the plants. There was once I even managed to convince my sis to bring back some bulbs and seeds from the UK....of course most of them didn't grow but some did.Anyway, these days I don't have much time to spare for gardening. So I have scaled my interest down quite a bit. I go for indoor plants now...those I can put on my work table and not forget to 'jaga' cos I see them often. I have been keeping these for almost a year at work. What I did was used the KFC chicken rice plastic containers for takeaways and some jelly crystals, also known as hydrogels which have this super ability absorb and retain extremely large amounts of a liquid relative to its own mass. They are also supposed to depolymerized through natural decomposition processes between 2 - 5 years. Supposed not to harm the environment, so I was informed.
To cut the cover into fancy shapes I used the Olfa Compass Cutter to cut circles and their standard art knife to cut all the other shapes...my friends used to wonder how I could cut such round shapes....free hand. Ha! Ha! I like Olfa products cos they are of quite good quality. I use a lot of them for my other craft work....those days when time was something that I had in generous quantities. Sigh!
Anyway, this is an aerial view of one of the plants above. Originally it was just a few leaves but over the last few months, with some TLC, it has really grown beautifully. The jelly crystals meant I didn't have to worry about water, even during long breaks. Can easily last 5-7 weeks without watering. As for nutrients, I put in a little of those fertilizers into the water every now and then...lo and behold...

Notice the design on the cover...those are cut with the compass cutter and standard art knife cutter. You can also use the normal pen knife but it takes more effort because the blade is a little wobbly and makes cutting a little difficult. I like using the KFC container cos it actually looks nice and is easy to cut...something to do with the texture of the plastic.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

DLink DSL-2650T ADSL2/2+ Router with Modem/Switch









Just bought a new all-in-one Dlink Modem cum router. Have not read many good reviews about it but being in AS does not give you much to choose....... I am replacing my old combo........ a DSL-504T modem & DI-714P+ wireless router.

Installation usually has its hitches..and usually one has to tweak the settings and reset and reboot.....usually a couple of times and this would usually cost you some time. This was one of those days that something would go wrong... and it cost me a lot of time.
















well this is the box the router came in... a swanky big box... inside is a tiny little thingy...
First thing you see is a "official looking sticker"

STOP! Insert CD and run wizard first....... actually the CD only contains the manual.. there is no need to install any driver. Basically you need to connect the ethernet cable to your computer/pc and configure using your browser.

This is how you should go about it.
First point your favorite browser to http://192.168.1.1/, enter your username and password (default: admin | admin)
Under WAN change the VCI value from the default 8 to 0.
The rest is just entering your streamyx username and password.. then save and reboot the router... and you are in!

But not so for mine....my router wireless radio kaputted!!.. signal went dead after it came alive for just a short while! So it was back to the shop and change a new one... aargh! The thought of Tesco and the jam was enough to make me sigh! Called the other branch hoping that they would allow me to take it there to change but no...gal over the phone said boss not in. Cannot! So we had to battle the traffic at Tesco.

Managed to change it but before that, told the boss that if it goes kaput again, to allow us to change at the other shop! The second time was quite painless and now it's running ok!

So bye bye to my two old buddies.. you have served me well.....








Well, maybe you can be of use in my workplace...

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Telematch at Church School

Church school is on every Saturday evening...usually after English classes held for the primary school kids.

This is the scene at church school today... the kids had telematch followed by a makan session. By the time we got there after picking our boy, the enthusiastic chants of 'jia-yu' could be heard. Lil Rainbow was already there as we had deposited her there earlier.Filling up the bottles...see who can fill up more in the same time. At the end, the poor judge had to 'plonk' himself on the floor to get a better view... why didn't they put the bottles on the table, huh?? 8)

Look at me waddling with my round butt... and I am doing a balancing act too.. 8)

Animal rights people would scream at this...cruelty to animals!!!

Scooping the water filled balloons with a spoon...and they are so wobbly....

And after the game above, while the kids were still having their last game inside, the big 'kids' (actually they are all young adults...who miss their childhood) were having this water bomb fight outside....Caught this one in midair...

I want, I want.....'chow' time. We have our tissue papers, now can we tuck in?

Saturday at Mergong Tesco

After breakfast, we decided to go to town to get some Cat 5 cable for the new church. After we were done getting it, we decided to drive by Mergong Tesco to see whether it was packed. To our surprised, it wasn't. So we went in. It was quite easy to find a parking.

The little one was obviously excited at the idea of being there as the last 2 attempts to bring her there were not successful as both times, our attempts were thwarted by the long lines of cars.

Anyway, this Tesco is by far the nicest shopping complex in town; partly because it is the newest and also because it really is quite nice inside. Plus point is the food outlets. You have the usual big names like KFC and Pizza Hut. But there were quite a few others to choose from as well as the food court.We went up to TechZone where I got myself a new HDD 120G, mainly to be the Time Machine for my MacBook. Painless way for backups. And we also got ourselves a DLink DSL2840T Wireless ADSL Router.

Then we finally went shopping for groceries in Tesco. One thing I like about it is finally, I don't have to go to Penang to get all the cold cuts and also the bacon strips; even though Tesco's mainly seem to be of one brand only at the moment, MeaTy. Previously if we want the latter, we had to get it whenever we went to Penang. So, I think this will probably make some people quite happy.

Had lunch at Noodle Station....mee at KL price, that's what probably most the Alor Star folks would say. But for me, at least there are more choices available to people.And while we were eating, we could see people queuing up for their donuts at Big Apple.It's still doing a roaring business!! But if you get bored with just donuts...there's always this....at King's Confectionary. I think the rest of the cake /bread shops in town will be in for a stiff competition in the coming months.Related Posts:
Tesco Opening in Alor Star
Coming Up! Mergong Tesco
Big Apple at Mergong Tesco Finally Opened
Mergong Tesco...2 weeks later

Friday, May 16, 2008

Bali Bali Hai...makan-makan

Went to this place yesterday night with the kids, 2+3. I always pass by this place, Bali Bali Hai, off Jln Lencongan Barat, but never had the urge to go in cos from the outside, it looked kinda foreboding, dim and all that. You get the impression that it may be a seedy place. 8)
Then Ling talked about it being something quite different by Alor Star standards.. So, yesterday night, we decided to give it a try. We arrived almost close to 8.30 p.m. The place was nearly empty except for 2 or 3 other tables. First thing that came to mind was ...ah! cannot tahan long. Will close down any time soon. Anyway, since we had already committed ourselves to try out the place, we looked for a comfortable place.Finally ended upstairs. Decor wasn't too bad. We ordered our food....not very much to choose from the menu...
Food is so, so but the ambience is not bad. There is wi-fi. I brought my Mac but couldn't log in. However there were other young people who came in later and they seemed to be able to surf fine. Anyway, it was only later that we found out that they also serve sea food. There are these nice cosy places where you can sit and eat and enjoy the not so fresh air (since it's located on a busy road) ...if you don't mind the mozzies...

What's left after dinner. Wasn't that great but guess everyone was polite enough to finish it...plus when you have something to play while eating, guess you won't mind the food so much. 3 of them were busy playing chor-tai-ti...something that sounds like that!

Anyway, by the time we left, the place had filled up somewhat ...with young people. There was a guy who brought his guitar and was strumming away. Even had this little cute amp that he brought along. He could play quite well. Near the main entrance was a huge screen which was showing the Uber Cup semi finals and quite a number of people were hanging around that particular area. Sports is always more fun watched in a group. Can cheer yourself mad. Anyway, this joint seemed quite popular with the young.

As we drove out, I noticed too that the seafood corner was doing not too badly too. There were actually quite many people tucking in their late dinners outside. Maybe I'll try it my next round there.
BTW, on the way home, we got stuck in a traffic jam easily about 2 km long .... I call it the TESCO jam....opening day-mah. Everyone thronging there....