Wednesday, June 25, 2008


While we were having lunch at KFC today, Wei 哥 called Dennis and said the saw the ranger on Since KFC provides free WiFi (yes, the KFC here in Nibong Tebal is not THAT backwards) Dennis took out his Nokia N82 and started surfing while I struggle to finish my burger.
Then, Dennis pointed out the Ranger! The first picture below is Dennis reversing the Ranger to it's VIP parking spot. I'm guessing that this picture was taken right after lunch when Dennis took his long sweet time do drive the Ranger as there was not many cars on the track.

Now I don't have a clue on when this picture was taken, probably Dennis would remember. 

Anyway, there are 3 pictures of the Ranger, a side profile of Danny (below) with Uncle Choy's monster car (the green one) but no Mango;  So this coming trip, I won't be doing anything except taking pictures! 

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Give blood and save lives

After 10 hours of sleep I was all prepped up and ready to donate blood. By the time we arrived at McD, it was almost 12p.m. The hospital that took part in this event was from Seberang Perai - about 10 minutes drive from Auto City.
When I peeked into the blood donor room, there was 4 beds but only one donor and his supportive wife. Dennis and I quickly filled in the form and proceed with standard procedures of being asked many questions (i.e. have we eaten, am I pregnant or having period and stuffs like that). After the Doc took my blood pressure and weight, I proceed to get my blood iron level counted in the most sophisticated method (not really canggih la... just that it beats the traditional method of using a container filled with Copper II Sulphate). Its a machine that does the calculation and gives the response in numbers. According to the nurse, a normal Asian woman should get a reading between 11.9 - 18.9 while blood donors should exceed 12.5. My reading was 13.9 (happy grin) as I proceed next to get my bag, Dennis came to me with a sour face. Doc refused to accept his blood as he had history of asthma. Even though the last attack was 10 years ago, she didn't want to take the risk of being responsible in the event that anything happens to him. 
Anyway, I proceed with the donation with Dennis being my personal camera man. In the room, I was greeted by 3 senior nurses with full of smiles. The donor whom I saw earlier was actually donating for his first time. He was considered lucky as being a first time donor, it is important that you get good hospitality and treatment as it will influence your future plans to donate - and the best way is getting a senior nurse - totally professional and filled with tender loving care! I definitely had lots of attention today. 3 nurses entertaining me alone - I felt like a super VIP! And the best thing is that the puncture wound made by senior nurses are small and clean. I had a 16G needle stuck in my arm, yet the wound is the size of a mosquito bite with minor bruise. 

So while I was in the process of squeezing my blood into the bag, I had a little chat with the 3 wonderful ladies and got lots of interesting stories. Everything in the room was almost qualified to be placed in a museum! The beds were like from colonial times; they didn't have blood donor chairs as it was out of their budget AND the models they had seen couldn't recline into a bed in the event the donor feels faint. Then it was the blood bag - really old school design. They all have seen the latest blood bag from the National Blood Bank (PDN) but it was totally out of their budget so they stick to this old fashion design. The new designs came with a side path where the nurses can tap blood samples before the donor fills the main bag. In the old school design, they have to cut the tube to get the blood after the donor filled the main bag. In  simple words, the new blood bag reduces contamination and exposure of the blood to the environment. Then came questioning on the amount of blood a donor can donate. Now according to these ladies, all criteria in accepting the amount of blood from any one donor is set by PDN. The weight, height and gender of the donor is obtained before it is decided on the amount of blood allowed to be taken. What's surprising is that last year when I donated blood, PDN has took 450cc of my blood when based on my physical conditions, they can only take 300cc. Talk about NOT practicing what you preached! Then came to question on the role of McD. They had a place for us to donate blood, but there was no token of appreciation from the host. Now, I'm not saying that I donate for rewards but a token of appreciation would be nice in form of discounted meals or at least a free drink. Unlike in KL, where flood loads of goodies awaits donors especially in temple organized events. But at least the McD management knows how to appreciate the nurses by providing them a coupon for free burger and drinks! At least something is better than nothing, right?

So after resting on the bed, I bid adieu to the ladies and my bag of blood; then head outside for free flows of milo (provided by the hospital) and coke (from Dennis' set meal). In a way, where there are not many donors, it's cool cos you get super VIP treatment. Yet you feel sad as the crowd prefers to eat and fatten their waistline than to donate and stay healthy...

Monday, June 16, 2008

BLOOD wanted

Care to donate blood? The hospitals need blood. Homo sapien blood that is. I've been donating blood since university days and make it a point to donate blood every 6 months. However since I've started working the opportunity is lesser plus residing in Penang makes it kinda worse. Anyway the only blood drive I get are those hordes that goes straight to your homes and suck the blood out of you without letting you know. They don't take much, only a couple of drops but the pain and the itchiness that comes with it can drive you up the wall!

Anyway, looking back at the past blood donations that I've been, the first blood donation was the most memorable. That was in faculty when Dennis and I just started dating, kinda funny to go blood donating as a date! But it wasn't scary at all especially when you have senior nurses taking care of you (totally professional and caring). The funny part is that the nurse even told me to say 'bye-bye' to my packet of blood when she took it away for storage!

Oh well, since I saw this poster at McD Auto City I just thought that I should go there this weekend and fill up a pint. Who knows one day I'll need it back! Blood ...

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Flowering Season

The flowering season in Nibong Tebal is back. Flowering plants - small shrubs, weeds and even trees were in full bloom. Hues of pink, white, purple and even blue beautified the otherwise dull green environment. Right outside the factory sits a two-story tall tree filled with pretty pink blooms. Further down, is another tree of the same species but with white flowers. Since earlier in the day was sunny, I parked the Ranger under that tree for some shades. When we went for lunch there wasn't much flowers on the ground. So after lunch, I parked at the same spot. But when it was time to go home, this was what we saw...

Well it could had been worse if it was a windy day huh? Now this is one tree that is nice to look at but can be a real mess during flowering season! Anyway, on the way home, we took a different route and saw the Eichhornia crassipes (keladi bunting) in full bloom (picture below). Isn't that beautiful? Well, I've thoughts of becoming a botanist/herbologist but I guess I wasn't meant to study that subject (which is available at the Farmer's University of Malaysia) or I wouldn't be where I am right now.

Oh well, I guess when the flowers blooms, the bugs will come crashing into our homes, smashing our windows and kamikaze on to any unsuspecting homo sapiens.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Long Live Diesel Engines!

3pm Parit Buntar. Dennis and I was at Chean's place to get the gear oil changed for the Ranger. The petrol stations around town then was at it's usual self; not too many cars and most of the time empty. After getting the Ranger's oil changed and screw back the gear box protector which Xiang had forgotten to put back two days ago XD.

5pm Parit Buntar town centre. We stopped by Wei 哥 place for a little chat and he informed us of price increase for petrol and diesel. Having filled the Ranger full tank only two days ago, we felt that it's not worth while. While heading back to Nibong Tebal, we received smses on the price increase from our friends and relatives.

6.30pm Nibong Tebal. After closing for the day, we headed home only to get a nice surprise at the junction near the main road. The petrol station on the opposite side of the road is filled with cars and in a gridlock. The two other stations further down the road was so congested till the main road was reduced to one lane. Dennis and I decided to stay home and not venture out as even the smallest petrol station in the middle of no-where which usually has very little customers will face a flood of customers - only for tonight.
Price increase for petrol and diesel is inevitable. I feel bad for those poor folks who earns just enough to make ends meet. What's worse is in Malaysia, there is no diesel powered vehicles designed specially for the lower income people; i.e. Diesel Savvy in a 3 cylinder 1.1 liter engine ^^ Ya ya... such an engine in a car would be like placing a motor on a bicycle! But there are add-ons like turbos and NOS... Hehehe... talk about up-sizing a diesel car for touge~! ^^,

Updated: This is the picture of the Gas station the day after... Couldn't take picture of that day itself cos it was a total grid lock and we couldn't even go anywhere near this station... It would have been better if I could put the before and after... totally cool...