Saturday, 22 January 2011

shopping craze…

the dubai shopping festival has started! if you don’t know yet, the dubai shopping festival is something like our mega sales in m’sia, but with better bargains. everything is really cheap! just last month, i saw a wool sweater selling for 129 dhs in h&m. i even tried it on, but didn’t really feel like spending 129 dhs on yet another sweater, when i already have a few jackets and sweaters in my closet. but last tuesday, i saw that the price has gone down to 39 dhs! needless to say, i bought it right away, without even trying it on… :P and the shopping fest hasn’t even started yet! officially, the sales is from 20th jan – 20th feb.

today, i went to the mall of emirates with the intention of buying some clothes. i only have 2 work blazers and i think i should buy a couple more. all the clothes outlets are giving discounts of 50-75%… very attractive indeed! but i can’t find anything i like that in the end, i bought books!

borders is having crazy sales too…

P1080174books for only 10 dhs (approx. RM8.35) each!

P1080176  all these for 30 dhs (approx. RM25) each!

i used to read a lot of paulo coelho books but for some reason, i stopped buying them. maybe coz there are just too many books to buy that i sorta put it off for later. but at only RM25 each, i guess now’s the time…

7 books for a total of less than 200 dhs (approx. RM167). i think this is an even better bargain than the mph warehouse sales that i used to go in kl. but damn, i bought 2 books from kinokuniya 2 weeks back, and one of them is going for 30 dhs at borders now!

Thursday, 20 January 2011

encounter with the (non)supernatural

riding in the bus on the way to work this morning, my graphics artist, sweet sheila, turned to me and said, “bossie (cantonese version of “boss”), yesterday night i jorng che (cantonese: encountered with the supernatural).” immediately my skin started to prick, coz we stay in the same building and the last thing i want to know is that the building i’m staying in is “dirty”!

anyway, she proceed to relate to me how last night, soon after she’s turned off her lights to go to sleep at about 12.30am, she felt her bed being shaken rather violently! her room mate was on night duty and she was alone in her room. it was as if someone was hiding underneath her bed and was shaking her bed from below, but she knew no one can possibly be hiding under there, as there were a lot of stuff under her bed and furthermore, the space below there were rather narrow. she was so stunned that she just didn’t know what to do. after a while, it stopped and she jumped out from her bed to turn on her lights. but nothing was amiss… nothing fell from her cabinets, all her skin care bottles didn’t topple over… it was really puzzling. then she got very angry and decided that if it happens again, she’s gonna scold and cuss whoever/whatever is disturbing her.

the whole time i was listening to her, i was so scared. damn, and i’m staying alone! as we went shopping after work yesterday and got home at 11pm, sweet sheila was speculating that maybe “something” followed us home in the late hours. yikes!!

then we got to the office and i was scrolling through facebook to see the latest posts posted by my friends… and guess what? it turned out there was a 7.2 magnitude earthquake at pakistan yesterday night near the border of iran and afghanistan, and the tremors could be felt right up to dubai!

ok, i know an earthquake is no laughing matter and i really feel sorry for those countries and people hit by natural calamities, but i laughed like a mad woman when i read about this earthquake! maybe i should start calling my artist silly sheila instead! :D

p/s: no, i didn’t feel anything even though i was still awake at that time. i think it’s coz i was on the 2nd floor and sweet sheila was on the 3rd floor.

Saturday, 15 January 2011

randomly dubai...

have not been updating lately, coz contrary to what most people think, i don't just enjoy life here in dubai. i actually do work hard too! :P anyway, here's another installment of bits and pieces of dubai for your reading pleasure...

1. signal at the signal!
the first time i rode in a taxi, i get so puzzled when the driver asked me (in indian accent - about 90% of taxi drivers here are from india or pakistan), "turn right at the next signal?" i was like, "har, what signal??" then only i realized that their word for "traffic light" is "signal". so weird...

2. door step delivery
you can get almost anything delivered to your doorstep here. for bigger establishments like mcD or pizza hut etc, they impose a minimum order for delivery, as well as a delivery charge. but for smaller businesses, like sundry shops or smaller restaurants, they'll deliver for free. just call them up, order something over the phone and they'll deliver it right to your doorstep on a bicycle. heck, you can even have your laundry and dry cleaning delivered to you!

3. funny address
M was asking for my address in dubai and when i gave it to her, her first reaction was, "wah, your address sounds more like directions. really like that one ah?"

yes, all the addresses here are more like directions than address. "corner of A and B road", "behind C building", "next to D mall" etc. really beh-tahan! and we don't have a postal system here too, as in, no postman will come deliver your letters to your door step, unless it's by courier companies like dhl, fedex etc. it's funny, considering they deliver everything else! but i guess with the primitive address system, it's hard to have a proper postal system. when we call for delivery, the delivery man will be calling us up when they're near to ask for directions. so i guess it won't be viable for the postman to be calling up each and every resident in a particular area for directions. the only sure way of getting your letters is by renting a p.o. box at your nearest post office.

4. recharge
i don't know about you, but when i think of the word "recharge", i'll associate it with batteries, energy, spirit etc. but here, apparently it's also related to your phones. not your phone batteries, but your phone prepaid credit! back home, we call it "reload", but it's "recharge" here. not sure how that came about, but then maybe the people here will think we're the weird one for calling it "reload" :D

5. clean city
it's weird that when you're walking in the streets of dubai, it's really hard to find a rubbish bin in sight. this is really frustrating when you want to throw something. you'll need to hold on to your rubbish until you come to a rubbish bin (which most of the time is NEVER) or when you reach home. but even with the lack of rubbish bins spotting the streets, the city is still very clean. seldom do we see any rubbish on the streets. and even more rare is the sigh of street sweepers. as far as i can recall, i've never seen any street sweeper on the streets here. it's either they don't exist or they work the graveyard shift. maybe the penalty imposed on litterbugs are so severe that people here refrain on littering? but we don't see any police or municipality personnel on the street, issuing out summons to litterbugs. so how come the streets here are so clean??

ok, that's all for now. stay tuned for the next episode of "bits of dubai", brought to you by "bits and pieces of me"! :P

Saturday, 1 January 2011

a brand new year...

i thought i'm not gonna do this new year post this year, but then it's my first new year in a foreign country! how can i let it pass just like that, right?

well, 2010 certainly has been an eventful year for me... among others, i was hired 3 times by 3 different companies, i moved house twice, and finally, i moved to a new city in another country near the end of the year.

the last move was a big step for me and i'm still adapting to all the different aspects of my new life here. but i'm happy and proud to say that apart from a few "glitches" in the beginning, things have been going well. and coming here has been a once-in-a-lifetime experience for me. other than the exposure i get from working in an international setting, i'm also learning a lot about people and their different cultures. it has indeed widen my horizons many folds.

ok, i don't normally do new year's resolutions but i just as i read back to my first entry for year 2010, i found that i did have some sort of "resolution" made, even though i didn't call it that! and i forgot that i made them too (which is another reason why i don't do new year's resolutions, coz i always forget about them!). so let's revisit my last year's resolution.

1. to move house, either to a rented studio apartment or a cosy crib of my own
i guess i achieved that, alright. twice! :D

2. to change to a better job in a better company
yep, done that!

3. to work smarter
hmm... i must say this is an on-going thing, so will continue to strive in this department!

4. to try to get more sleep and exercise more!
ok, i've failed to do much of these...

5. to do more craft, and maybe earn some side income out of it
i don't know. have i done "more"?

6. to have a bit more compassion and tolerance towards other ppl
ok, this one is really hard to gauge. i think i've not really consciously done this...

anyway, here's my target for 2011. yes again, it's not a resolution, but a TARGET! :P
1. to try to get more sleep
i'm not as young as i used to and i'm beginning to look really haggard with my puffy and black-ringed eyes. oh, but it's nearly 1am now, so let's start working on this tomorrow! :P

2. exercise more!
i've been experiencing some pains in my knee joints since a few months back. so prior to coming over to sandland, i thought i'd better get it looked at. and it was found that the cartilage in my knee joints have worn out drastically, which is why i feel pain when walking. it could be due to several reasons, with ice-skating and mountain and hill hiking (mount kinabalu, panorama hill and mount mulu) being the biggest culprits. anyway, i was on medication for a while, until my supplies ran out. so now i'm only taking glucosamine tablets that i bought from the pharmacy here. and the orthopedic who treated me in kl said that i should swim more to build up my cartilage, so that's what i'm hoping to do! but with the weather here getting quite cold and the water in the outdoor pool not heated up, i've been giving myself a lot of excuse to delay it... :P

3. to travel more
i wanna see more of the world!

4. to spend more time with my parents, and have more patience with them
ironic as it may sound, being so far away has strengthen the bonds between my parents and i. i'm able to tell them i love and miss them now without feeling awkward. i guess being far away has made such awkwardness insignificant and we grab every opportunity to cherish those dear to us. and my mom's sudden need for a ballooning procedure barely one week after i left the soil of m'sia, as well as my dad's car accident last week (he's ok, by the way!) have made me realized 3 things (well, i know about these 3 things already, but these incidents have slapped these realities in my face): they're not as young as before, they won't be around forever and life is fleeting! so i hope to be home as often as i can and spend more time with them.

ok, that's it, i guess. a much shorter list than last year, but i think these are the things that i need to focus on right now.

here's wishing everyone a year filled with much love, great health, utmost happiness and abundance wealth! happy new year!