Australia Trip!

Hello! We’re on our way back to SG and it’s only past 2/7hr. So we finally traveled to Australia after talking about it for a while.

How can I describe this experience? It’s kinda surreal because I don’t believe it’s happening. Lol, it even feels a bit unreal now coz Australia is like too expensive and far for me.

Anyway, it’s been an awesome 5 days! We booked Airbnb this time coz it’s much more (much, much more tbh, maybe 2 or 3 times cheaper) affordable than hotels. Furthermore, the location is really near the theme parks which is a plus point for us since theme parks are the highlights of the trip.

We traveled by buses – thanks OCK, the bus master who always check timings and which buses to take 🙂

IMG_20180523_102849

And Simon who is always so brave to ask bus captains to top up/reload our GO passes. Thanks ♥

IMG_20180524_124348

The house smells so great! Really clean and comfy. And we I slept like dead logs everyday when we hit the bed at 8pm SG time? It’s amazing how early sun sets in Australia. My friends have warned that the shops close at 5pm ish and indeed we couldn’t find stuff to eat on our first day.

I’m just typing based on my memory, and might not be 100% factual coz yeah, memory is not 100% trustworthy.

So we arrived at Gold Coast airport, got our GO passes and took a bus and then transfer to tram to Helensvale.
This GO pass costs $10/day and it gives you unlimited rides on buses and trams, not trains though. It was pretty worth it, we think. Coz the bus master has spoken that we need $46+ for the total transport spendings, and come to think of it, we only travelled by transport for 4 days, i.e. $40. Yay for savings!!!

So we deposited our bags in our Airbnb, thanks Kara for allowing us to check in earlier 😍 and then we headed to the nearby mall for lunch. We had kebabs and baguette.

We wanted to go to Wet n Wild simply coz we wanted full days for the rest of the “worlds”.

IMG_20180521_105505

You can wear dry fit shirt and shorts in Wet n Wild. The locker costs $10 for a day of rental, it’s pretty big – can stuff 3 of our bagpacks. And the first ride that we went was mammoth falls. Hahahaa, it was crazy! Not because it was high and twisty (well, it was quite high and twisty), but it’s the cold wind that blew onto us which was absolutely crazzzyyy. We burst out laughing coz it was too cold haha…

What else did we try? I don’t really remember but it’s true that you only remember those misadventures. Hmm, so we went on this crazy pipe thing… Where you stand and the hole opens below your feet. I got reversed coz I couldn’t shoot pass a loop that’s supposed to go up. So embarrassing 😂 Am I too heavy? Shit…. Ermm, how about we just blame it on my position? Didn’t cross my legs as instructed. 😐

The black hole thingy was nice coz it’s different and I like the U-shaped ride (similar to SG’s wild wild wet).

Wet n wild closes at 3:30pm, and my experience is that you will run out of things to play to stay throughout.

Ended the day by going to Helensvale station. Shopping time at supermarkets – Coles and Kmart which is something like a super store. It pretty much sells everything from clothes to toys and food.

IMG_20180521_101348.jpg

Do… not… get… these kiwis. Super sour T_T

IMG_20180522_151952

Pretty peppers!

IMG_20180522_152207

We shopped until all the eateries are closed and panicked when even McDonald’s was closed. Only Domino’s is opened so we got ourselves two pizzas and we ate them at the bus stop lol coz the smell really strong sia.

Then comes the next day. We decided that we need a break from the risky and hyperventilating rides – so off to Sea World we go~ Sea World is pretty different as it’s more animals exhibit centric rather than rides: dolphins, penguins, sea lions, fishes, you name it. So we rushed from one place to the other for showtimes and took photos of the animals. I hope the animals are happy (although captive).


It’s very scenic with my HDR mode shots, ok it kinda looks Photoshopy but it’s really that beautiful!

Oh, and we took photos with Squidward hahahaa, so cute!

IMG_20180522_102911.jpg

Lunch was stressful simply because of all the seagulls staring at our food. I basically wolfed down my prime burger and fries.

IMG_20180522_100328IMG_20180522_100402

And as usual, we ended early and went to Australia fair. OCK and I bought jackets from Connor too, and we had Gong Cha coz we’re so thirsty. We had Japanese for dinner and Simon was so glad to have rice (for a change from baguette, wraps and chips). Niceee.

Then came Movie World. Superman, DC Rivals, Batwing were fun! I especially like the DC Rivals ride coz it was so crazy big. There isn’t much queue for all the rides (maybe it’s non-peak coz on a weekday), and I feel sorry for those who bought express passes.

Log ride was fun too, and I’m glad that we didn’t get too wet as our jacket helped us block off the water, heehee.

We need to pay for photos with Tweety and friends though, so we didn’t take…

Lunch was eeeee. Simply because the fish was fishy for the fish and chips. What do you expect seriously? Fish = fishy right? Haha, coz I don’t usually like sauce on my food, so it’s extremely fishy for me. Thanks Simon for exchanging nice chicken quinoa? with me.

We had dinner at Helensvale food court again. We saw this sign: 3 for $10 and we just had our cheapest meal of the trip. The fried rice was ok, but the honey chicken (for me) is quite hard.

IMG_20180523_144732IMG_20180523_144748

Then came another highlight of the trip: tour to Springbrook and mountain Tambourine. Springbrook was awesome and we get to see the really pretty waterfall. We didn’t encounter many animals in our hike though (lucky or unlucky huh?) Hahaha. So we’re really glad that there’s a lady who came with us on the trip. She’s really positive and loves nature and speaks well (so she can talk to our guide, and we can stop feeling awkward and think of what to say).

We had our morning tea and lunch in the wild. Quite an experience and I was afraid that the turkey might snatch our food, and afraid of sand flies biting us coz I hate feeling itchy.

Then we went for Skywalk in mountain Tambourine. The pathway was high and a bit shaky. Thankfully we all managed to stay alive. Ok, exaggerated a little. A lot of trees, but I was a little disappointed that we couldn’t spot any animal in the creek lookout. Maybe they’re hibernating coz it’ll be winter soon.

Our guide dropped us at our Airbnb and we walked to the nearby plaza to have dinner. Most awesome dinner ever: pork dinner. It was so good. I guessed I missed having pork after all the chicken.

Last official day at Dreamworld! Tower of terror was extremely good coz it’s so fast but for the first time, we had to queue. Then I realized that only 16 people can be on it at one time, hence, the delay.

So glad that we get to take photos with Henry the octopus. Too bad oTp didn’t came out.

IMG_20180525_085646.jpg

Lunch was great. Buffet. I had three rounds of nuggets hahaha.

And finally giant drop was up! There we go… 38 storeys of height. The view was amazing up there, and cars look like Lego too haha.

IMG_20180525_130436

Also, the motorbike coaster was pretty unique too. We sat on motorbikes – very colourful and pretty.

IMG_20180525_131836.jpg

Dinner at Helensvale food court again. We had grilled chicken breast (mine with rice, Simon with bread and Ock with pocket). It was ok, and we were to full to have ribs in pizza hut. Too bad.

IMG_20180525_153901.jpg

Sorry for the lack of enthusiasm in describing the last few days. I’m getting tired from typing almost an hour haha.

Looking forward to the next holidays with Simon and OCK! 🙂 Thanks for helping me with all the heavy stuff and all! 😁

Oh, and we all achieved our objective of catching Kangaskhan! 😉 Hoorayy!!!

Screenshot_2018-05-21-06-26-14-571_com.nianticlabs.pokemongo.png

Advertisements

I can’t squat!

Eeeks! That’s irritating. I’m getting angry at myself for not being able to squat 😦

But on hindsight, this “experience” taught me that there are many things that I’m taking for granted.

Wrote that 5 days ago.

5 days later: I still can’t squat.

But I learnt that I can kneel down and get the things that I require. I can use tools to prop up the things that I need. Or I can call out to Simon for help haha.

Hope to recover soon and may all the good things happen to you and me. Stay positive! Cheers!

Um… Reflection on a Tuesday night?

As I have nothing to do now, except to sleep, let me reflect on my thoughts for a while, short one I promise 🙂 I find it fulfilling to resolve people-related issues and I’m still learning bit by bit (not bytes 😛 hee hee), day by day. Although I’ve read books and attended courses on how to manage conflict, it’s still fuzzy to me on how do we really apply what we’ve learnt to real-life situations.

The experience that I’ve got recently at work is awesome because I drive people nuts. Okay, you caught me there. I’m exaggerating. I find myself stepping on people’s tails more often than not recently cos I’m yolo-ing. Why I like to exaggerate so much sia?! 😯 Some issues get more complex at a different level because you deal with emotions, accountability, responsibilities and well, just more “people” aka people issues.

Argh, let’s just cut the crap and summarize this to you (you includes future me): When faced with a issue, and dealing with people whom you don’t feel exactly comfortable with, it’s especially important to focus on the SOLUTIONS instead of “what went wrong”. Really, think win-win. And while thinking of the options to resolve an issue, it’ll be good if you come armed with information, e.g. the costs and consequences of each option.

I caught myself rewinding in this circle of “what went wrong” and it was a negative spiral downwards. The interaction did not achieve a common goal and understanding, and both parties were left exhausted trying to explain their point of view. I realized this later and after getting agitated (reminder to self: if one explanation doesn’t work, try another and not just repeat the same one cos it will still not work), and thankfully, it took the right turn before things worsen. I hope that the next time when there’s a same-same but different issue occurs, I can focus on solving the problem and moving forward.

That’s all I wanna share for now. To end off, I look forward to changes and new challenges in work in the upcoming October 😀 Cheers!

I like flowers and …

Cooking (:

Heh, so I suddenly wanted to cook on one of my off-days.

These were the recipes that I followed:

Verdict: I thought the snow pear soup was a success. The potato and minced pork dish can have some rooms for improvement – less oil and also more skills required 😛 Also, I “free-styled” a vegetables dish.

Let me walk you through the process 🙂

So I just got back from my shopping…

Got new seasoning ingredients – white pepper and sesame oil. Got some Chinese herbs – dried almonds and white fungus.

IMG_20170511_154609

Seasonings line-up. Say hello to the new sesame oil and white pepper. I learnt how to use a bottle opener for the new sesame oil lol. IMG_20170511_154805

Let’s marinate the minced pork first. I used my trustworthy spoon to help me with the marination.

IMG_20170511_155503

And I wrapped it up after seasoning and “mixing”, to the fridge. P.S. I think the recipe didn’t tell us to do this? But I did it anyway coz it’s weird to leave the raw pork in room temperature?IMG_20170511_155722

Then it’s time to weigh the white fungus. Woah, it’s really 2 huge pieces lol. And I have a scientific weighing machine with me here.

The kitchen scale that I bought previously buay zhun one. IMG_20170511_160114

I need 10g… I guess 0.1 doesn’t make much difference?

IMG_20170511_160341

To soak it in hot water… Oops, my house don’t have hot water leh. Let’s boil some using this electric water boiler. It’s fast!

IMG_20170511_160517

While waiting for the water to boil, let’s check out the ribs.

IMG_20170511_160734

Told you that my boiler is fast, so I filled it with some boiling water + any other water that I can find in the house. Haha, from my pitcher la. Let’s wait for the white fungus to growwww…

IMG_20170511_161016

I need to blanch the pork ribs, but I don’t know how. I remember OCK putting ribs in a boiling water and then pour all the water away a few years ago. So I googled and it turns out that I just need to throw the pork in the pot after it boils? Then pour all the water away and start boiling in a new pot of water.

IMG_20170511_161019

And I chopped the ribs further into smaller parts using our one-and-only kitchen knife as you can see in the picture below:

IMG_20170511_161419

Then I threw the ribs into the pork and move on to the next item – PEARS! It’s peeling time~

IMG_20170511_162140

The shapes aren’t consistent… But who cares right? It’ll eventually shrink when it boils 😛 I deliberated if I should throw in the “korean” pear on the right.. Eventually I did, coz I’m greedy lol.

IMG_20170511_163118

Ok, recipe says 1.2 liters of water. Hmm, I don’t know how to agar, so I used this 1.5 liters bottle to help me with my agaration.

IMG_20170511_163602

And I added the ingredients in – blanched ribs, pears, red dates, dried almonds. Omg, it’s so full luh! Shouldn’t have added the additional pear… Oops.

IMG_20170511_164411

And it starts to boil, and omg, it’s super full! How am I going to add the white fungus? I think the recipe instructs to close it partially with a lit, but I skipped that as I wanted more to evaporate so that I have space for the 10g of white fungus 😛

IMG_20170511_170739

Meanwhile, I moved on to potato! It says only one potato.

IMG_20170511_170908

Ta-da! Again, luan luan lai for chopping… Which isn’t good coz instructions said to make them equal in terms of height. Let’s see what happens next o_O

IMG_20170511_171629

Managed to squeeze the white fungus in, heng ah!

And will set this slowly to boil and boil. IMG_20170511_172414

Pan is ready!

IMG_20170511_172836

Noob trying to oil-fry things for the first time. Errmm, seriously, too much oil. And I’m not sure when is medium heat too. So I just threw the potatoes in when I feel like it. IMG_20170511_173240

Then some of the potatoes became chao-ta. Coz too thin, and some not sure if cooked or still raw. Then I thought over-cooked is better than under-cooked. And I drained the oily potatoes out, poured away some of the oil and threw in the marinated pork.

IMG_20170511_175139

Um, I’m  pretty sure the pork are quite finely chopped in the recipe. Mine seems to be in clutters lol. And take a look at the burnt potatoes 😥IMG_20170511_175144

Omgee. Super oily! And I realized that Dark Soy Sauce wasn’t available, so I used Light Soy Sauce in place of that. No wonder the color looks different hor.

IMG_20170511_175557

Threw in the potatoes and let it “sit” for a while…IMG_20170511_180052

Then comes to my “free-style” dish. I used one table spoon of oyster sauce with water. And this is nai bai with carrots. Oh, I threw in half a bag of white oyster mushrooms too.IMG_20170511_184953

Hmm, it’s nice 😛 Not too salty and oyster-ish. IMG_20170511_190130

Then it’s show-time!

Potato with Minced Meat: IMG_20170511_203913

Vege with Oyster Mushrooms:IMG_20170511_203918

Snow Pear Soup: IMG_20170511_224345

After-note: China pears taste better than Korean pears for this soup 🙂

We had a great time eating. But not washing lol =x

My current thinking? Cooking is fun, if only it’s once in a while. The preparation and after-work is quite siong. I think I spent 3 hours cooking these and Simon spent 30 minutes to an hour washing up.

I’m not sure when is the next time I’ll cook but this is definitely a great experience! 🙂

Seeya again soon!

Hello from Hiatus!

Heyos! Been so long since I blogged. Man, I think the pressure cooker is running a little high recently at work. I need a place to release stress, so here am I, ranting 😐 I think there will be more posts coming up lol.

I find it increasingly difficult to make certain decisions at this point, especially when time is running out.

Nobody said it was easy. – Coldplay, The Scientist

Heh, so I’m listening to that and it was so apt for my current situation.

Again, I am appreciative of the support that I get from my awesome team :’) Thank you so much although I don’t show it. Thank you for the “no negative feelings” conversations. I should show more positive emotions and treasure the times that we have together.

So we’re running out of time to re-design a major feature for our program. It was challenging to convince my team and users (biggest challenge is to convince myself cos I am stubborn sometimes) that this will be the minimal viable product to be launched.

Why do I find it so hard to convince myself? I’m guessing it could be due to past experience when my guts shouted something ain’t right but we went ahead and the results are disappointing. But I have to admit that sometimes the results don’t turn out that bad either. It’s also a bad habit of being an idealist in a world with many other realistic considerations.

I appreciated how my PM takes the time to explain what I want couldn’t be achieved given the circumstances and constraints that we have. Reflecting about what she said today, I think I understand now. She didn’t stop me from dreaming of possible solutions though, but the timing is just not right now.

I do hope future generations engineers supporting this system will understand too, just like how hard I am trying to understand why some legacy systems are designed in a certain way.

Concluding thoughts: When designing a new system based on a legacy system, it’ll be great if you can put on the thinking hats of the people who came before you. To me, there are gems hidden in the history. While we should challenge the existing processes which can be made better and more efficient, we should respect and take time to understand why things are the way they are. This might ultimately remove unnecessary road-blocks along the way.

Wish us luck for the path to launch! We can start counting down now… Fighting!