Sunday, August 30, 2009

Rich Son Poor Son

I like it. =)

Who has the Rich Son?

One Good View, One Bad Fall & One Kind Deed

Went cycling this morning at 6+, and the sunrise view across a misty field in Lim Chu Kang was awesome. The air was fresh and cooling. =)

Unfortunately, while i was along Lim Chu Kang Road, I lost concentration and swayed to the left and fell down. Tyre was punctured, wrist was sprained, and wounded my right calf and thigh. I felt frustrated immediately - knowing that I gotta stop my swimming for 2 weeks be'cos of the open wounds.

I never had so much body injuries in my life - well, I was never a sporty person. Knee injury due to long distance running, abrasion around my eyes due to wearing goggles during swimming (yah.. WTF?!?!), other wounds and injuries due to falling down during cycling etc... Triathlon is also an expensive sport, a time-consuming one and have alot of restrictions (e.g no late-night drinking as it will dehydrate the body & need to wake up early to train)
I guess it is part and parcel of trying to be a triathlete - I am aiming to complete my first half-ironman next march.

I have seen video-clips of people completing their races and the exhilaration on their faces, but seldom do we see the sacrifices they made. There are many reasons not to train (bad weather, no time, fatigue, injury, pain etc..), but there is only one reason to do it - to honor yourself.
Is it worth it?
Yes and No.

Anyway, back to the story, I was stranded in Lim Chu Kang Road - No CAB (despite trying to make a booking), and I even did the hitch-a-ride hand gesture, but the drivers returned me with a weird look. Hitching a ride does not work in Singapore. Fortunately, there was a bus - 975 - the only bus. The bus driver (PRC Chinese) stopped and I explained to him my situation. He had some reservations, as i know bike is not allowed in the bus.

In the end, he still allowed me to board and asked me where i would be alighting (obviously, he was worried that his superior would see it). I alighted 2 stops before the bus terminal, as I didn't want to create any problem for this nice driver. I thanked him before I alighted.

It was one kind deed and I appreciated it.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Random: A Singapore Taxi Driver's Story

"Probably the only taxi driver in this world with a PhD from Stanford and a proven track record of scientific accomplishments, I have been forced out of my research job at the height of my scientific career, and unable to find another one, for reasons I can only describe as something "uniquely Singapore". As a result, I am driving taxi to make a living and writing these real life stories just to make the dull job a little more interesting. I hope that these stories are interesting to you too."
I enjoyed reading his entries - a documentary of people from different social strata of Singapore.
I am sure he would find another job soon.
It is a passing phase.
After the darkest storm, the sunshine and rainbow will emerge.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

What are the things in life that is worth dying for?

Just had a good sunday morning ride and breakfast with a good friend.
I was commenting that it is sad that alot of people get their sense of identity and self-worth from their jobs. Many people treated their jobs as their lives and invested everything into it. And when they were retrenched, many of them (especially the guys) sank into depression and lost their self-esteem.
It is very sad that people derived their self-worth/self-esteem from their work.
Even if you are retrenched, you are still the same person, just having more free time only!!
Last year, DBS Bank retrenched for the first time. Another good friend (who worked in the DBS) shared with me that one of his colleagues was retrenched - even though she had been in the bank for 20+ years, and gave her youth and energy to the company, but one week after she had left, all her records were erased from the company's intranet.
Nobody will remember how well you have done in your work.
When you die, nobody is going to say how great you have done at work, or how much sales have you closed, etc... Colleagues and company will eventually forget you.
Family and Friends won't.
Those who you have touched their lives won't.
So What are the things in life that is worth dying for?
Hope i set you thinking.
I am asking myself the same question too.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

1 year of Flexitarianism

It has been 1 year since I decided to become a flexitarian.
I thought the initial enthusiasm would fade in 3 months time.
I am glad that my enthusiasm has evolved into something that I believe in.
It is tough to become a full-vegetarian.
And I have utmost respect for Vegans.
How can they give up Chocolate?!?!
Currently, I do not eat any land animals at all, and would eat Seafood occasionally.
I am limiting my milk intake as well, by switching to soya bean drink. Cereals with Soya Bean drink is not bad!
A few years ago, I would not believe that I could be semi-vegetarian.
My favourite WAS Fried Chicken Wing.
Do I miss the TASTE of fried chicken wing?
Absolutely, Yes.
Do I miss the EXPERIENCE of eating fried chicken wing?
Absolutely, NO.
'nothing will benefit human health and increase chances for survival of life on Earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet.'
- Albert Einstein
Most importantly,
Being vegetarian is a way to save our beautiful and precious world that we are living in.
While the cause of world hunger is multi-faceted , meat consumption is a contributing factor. This is because much Third World grain and other food is fed to animals (to produce cheaper meat to be eaten in developed countries), not to hungry Third World people.
By eating less or no meat at each meal, we all can make a difference in the world.
The first step is always Awareness.

Decided to go green by bringing my own shopping bag.
Pleasantly surprised that I got $0.10 off my bill.
I Felt great! =D

Friday, August 14, 2009

KL Trip with Spice Gang (8th-10th Aug)

This is another highlight of this year.
Not because there is anything special about Kuala Lumpur,
but because I always have a great time with Spice Gang.
Unfortunately, 2 members could not join us, nevertheless,
it was great fun!
It was a "Nuah-ing" trip
Eating, massaging, napping, lazing, swimming, clubbing, drinking, shopping, eating, eating and more EATing. hahaha...
Dinner time with Spice Gang
During the dinner,
M's business partner (A Canadian guy in his 40s) after knowing that we have been friends for more than 12 years, suggested that we should bet to see who die first. The person who die first "will get" the money (may be for his/her funeral).
I think most people would be offended by his remarks.
However, I commented that his suggestion is very wise.
We have celebrated -
21st birthdays together,
university graduations together,
weddings together,
house-warmings together,
the birth of new member together.
Shouldn't we celebrate the end of a GREAT journey?
Be aware that our friendship is impermanent.
Be more appreciative of each other.
Treasure the friendship while it last.
Remember the great time together.
Enjoy each other's companionship.
Old friends are especially important to me.
We kinda grow up together and see each other evolving over the years.
We shared so many priceless moments together.

Happy Birthday, Princess W!!!
K, being a workaholic, took his saturday evening off work to buy the cake and join us for the celebration. We did not see him on Sunday, as he was back to work the whole day!
Yup, we failed to persuade him to join us on Sunday. =(

Black and White Pics
Why do i always enjoy my time with Spice Gang?
We always do alot of foolish things.
We had fun doing it.
THANK YOU for the wonderful time!

Friday, August 07, 2009

The Dhamma Brothers

Taken from:

The Donaldson Correction Facility is a maximum security prison in Alabama, a state along the United States’ so-called ‘Bible Belt’. In this prison are some of the most dangerous criminals of the state, men convicted for murder, manslaughter, gang activities, shootings and stabbings. And yet, horrendous crimes they may have committed, some of them yearn for emotional and social change. In 2002, their opportunity came in the form of a meditation course and Vipassana meditation retreat that was introduced in hope of offering inner peace and genuine rehabilitation for these men. Such a program was unheard of in the West, and even the participants of the course were partially cynical about it. As one of them put it, “I’ve been through every course imaginable. A meditation course? C’mon!”

For 10 days, the men faced their inner personal traumas, and the program was a resounding success. Unfortunately, complaints by the locals that the prisoners "were being turned into Buddhists” caused the program to be shut down. With the change in prison administration at the end of 2005, the meditation course was reintroduced. The participants of the previous course were interviewed, and to the surprise of the interviewers…



The question should not be:

Are people turning into Buddhists?

The question should be:

Are people becoming better

- happier, more loving and peaceful?

Monday, August 03, 2009

Osim Singapore International Triathlon 2009

I have completed my first Olympic Distance (OD) Triathlon
– 1.5km Swim, 40km Bike, 10km Run.
My official race timing & Category Ranking:
(I believe the transition time is included in the Bike Leg)

1.5km Swim: 38min 46sec (44 out of 109)
40km Bike: 1hr 31min 42 sec (33 out of 109)
10km Run: 53min 36 sec (18 out of 109)
Overall Timing: 3hr 4min 3sec (22 out of 109)
Even though I failed to hit my 3hrs target , I was quite happy with my overall performance. I was disappointed with my swim as it was 5mins more than my usual timing, but then, the sea was choppy and I did not get into my usual swimming rhythm. As for the cycling leg, I did not push myself too hard as I did not want to exhaust myself before the running leg. And I did push myself hard during the last 10km run.
That’s all that matters – giving my best.
Nobody is going to care if I hit 3hr target time,
and I just want to be responsible to myself.
I remembered watching Triathlon race on TV, and I asked myself:
Can I do it?I was very sure that I doubted myself,
As back then, I even struggled to swim 100m in freestyle.

Arbor Buddies


This race was special as it was the first race that I took part with both Jon & RF.
Less than a year ago (14th Sept 2008), RF sent us an email with a link & a question:
Will you do this?

Till this day, I still don’t know if I have the courage to do it.
But I have taken my first step and strike off one item from my to-do-list.
This item had been in my do-to-list for a few years already, and RF’s email rekindled the interest in me to pursue it. Jon was inspired by the clip as well.
The timing of the Osim Triathlon race was perfect.
RF just came back recently after completing his fellowship programme at Stanford University, and Jon delayed his flight to US where he would be furthering his studies at Carnegie Mellon University. (Yah, I am the only one kena stuck in Singapore – not really complaining though). So it is a rare opportunity for us to take part together.
It was a great race with great friends.
The only sad part was someone died during the race.

It was so unfortunate.
Life is impermanent.
Cherish it. Love it. Live it.