Saturday, March 31, 2007

The Graduation

I know after this entry many people would feel very much like wanting to kill me. Why? Because, this is NOT my graduation. I iterate, this is NOT my graduation. What? I have NEVER mentioned that this entry will be my graduation, I just simply said Autumn Graduation in UWA, and that was a general statement, without refering to myself in any way. I have just got my statement of qualification, not even a degree yet. Ok, kill me already.


The University of Western Australia - Winthrop Hall

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People Everywhere @ UWA

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I was supposed to graduate last September, the Spring Graduation of University of Western Australia. Well, for those of you who actually do follow up my blog, you guys whould have known why and how things got delayed so badly. Let's just say there are issues, and complications that I had to go through, and the path I have chosen is not as smooth sailing as it should be. I have no regrets, and I have not that many complaints so far. Yes, I am late. I am moving slower than I should, but I am doing the best I can. Graduation or no graduation, I fought my way to complete my degree, and SQUEEEZZEEDD that one piece of paper out of the university. Graduation or no graduation, I am now a full graduate. I know two other friends from my batch who skipped their graduation ceremony.

The question is, should I skip mine?

More People

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Since I have just technically finished uni few days ago, I am placed in line for the September, 2007 for Spring Graduation. You see, there has been a one year gap, and it just does not feel right attending the graduation anymore. I know graduation is something that seems like a life and death affair for some people. But seriously guys, after all the sufferings and tortures from an Australian University, I think I just want to get my huge heavy ass out of this University as soon as I can. I do not really see my graduation ceremony as something that significant in my life. It does mark the end of the university life, and the beginning of career, but hell... all those years in university, it actually really ends with that one piece of paper. The ceremony is just a celebration. I see no reason to celebrate. No reason at all.

I mean, what is the point of celebrating when there is no one to celebrate with you?

All my friends are gone now, many of them graduated last semester, and the rest, this semester. By next semester, seriously, no one is left, but me.

Not to mention that after one year (September last year to September this year) the feeling and excitement, are just fading out already.

So, you tell me, graduation or no graduation?

Anyway, to the happier side of things, attending the ceremony (more like an after-party thing) this time and being there for my friends, there is just something stirring in my heart that I could not quite explain. I shall elaborate on this further later, lets just move on with the pictures first.


Jun

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Kang Wei

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Terry and Kwan Chi

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Ivy and Kwan Chi

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Francis

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Gan

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The after-party was kept rather simple, and sweet. There was finger food, unlimited supply of juice and wine for everyone present. People from everywhere just flooded the front lawn of the Winthrop Hall, and well, you can see people shaking hands, hugging, kissing and saying congratulations like every now and then. Some even screamed and cried out loud in joy like they have seen someone being raised up from the dead. Scary I tell you. But nevertheless, being there, I witnessed the common joy, and the aura of the celebration that was strongly radiating everywhere !! Everyone was happy and contented, and everyone else was happy for everyone there. The sense of happiness was just, indescribable.

Everyone was happy, but me.

Dorcas and the OCF-ers

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The Engineering Group

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I do not know if I should be selfish at times like this. I have not been giving much thought on myself, not my own happiness for quite some time now. I just did what I can, the best I can to get hold of that one piece of paper, that in the end the meaning of that one piece of paper just does not seem as precious as it was when I began the journey. Maybe this is not exactly the best way to elaborate about my feelings about graduations, but hey, I just think that I should have graduated last semester. I could not. Some things are left undone. Unfinished. And now, I am not sure if finishing it is something worth enduring the pain.

Alright, enough about me, for all my friends who have graduated that particular night, I sincerely congratulate each and every single one of you. And may I add that I wish the best in whatever you guys do in the future.


Side Note:

For those of you wondering why the graduates were not wearing the Square Hat, well, for the University of Western Australia, undergraduates (bachelor in Engineering for example) are not qualified to actually wear that hat. Only Postgraduates (Masters and PhD holders) are entitled to graduate with that Square Hat.

Seriously guys, does this not say much about the university and what they make of themselves?

Thursday, March 29, 2007

The Pizza Before Graduation

Here is a short entry before the promised graduation entry.

The early evening, right before the Autumn Graduation Ceremony of UWA, in the very last minute Charmaine rang me up and asked me out for a get together session. She suggested we have our dinner nearby the place where I stay, and only one place rang out loud in mind: Broadway Pizza !!! It was such a last minute plan that we did not have time to grab hold of others, and since Charmaine does not have that much free time to spare this semester, this dinner was a MUST, or else I wont get to see her for a long, long time.

I know Chun Chow must be screaming as he reads this, well, not exactly on the dinner before graduation part, but more on the other two words: BROADWAY PIZZA !!! I gotta tell you all, Perth food may not be as glorious as Kuching food, but not having Broadway Pizza for months while I was in Kuching was enough to make me crawling up the wall squeeling like a girl. Yes, try very hard to imagine that happening.

Anyway, here is Charmaine of http://cynical-idealist.blogspot.com

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Who started the Good Guys Vs Bad Guys Revolution not too long ago....


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You better be a good guy... or else !!! You get whacked in the head with an empty Pepsi bottle.


I have repeatedly mentioned again and again how much better the pizza here in Australia is in comparison to those you found back in Malaysia, and how much better the pizza in Kuching could, and should have been. I was not exactly a fan of pizza before I came to Perth, but being here for so long, I definitely had a change of appetite. No, Pizza Hut in Malaysia still sucks like ever, they just have to learn and change their entire menu and recipe to keep up with the standards.

The three of us, Khee Hwa, Charmaine and I ordered two large pizza for dinner.

Meat Lover

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Cheese, Tomato, Ham, Bacon, Pepperoni, Beef and Extra Cheese. BBQ Sauce Optional. This is definitely my top preference, since it has ALL meat, meat, meat and CHEESE. Oh ham and bacon oven-baked in cheese.... oh heaven...


Broadway

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Cheese, Tomato, Ham, Bacon, Pepperoni, Mushrooms, Capsicum, and Olives. This is my second choice when I come here, well, you have to admit there is bacon and ham again, so the choice is not surprising. Chun Chow prefers this over Meat Lovers, I do not know why, but yeah, the mixture with mushrooms, olives and capsicums makes it similar to the supreme pizza by Pizza Hut, but of course, Broadway is waaaaaaay better.


Alright, Broadway is not like "thhhaaaaaaaaattt" good, It definitely is not in the same league as Little Ceasers, but good enough to beat the hell out of anything you can find in Malaysia. And of course, we do have Domino here in Perth too, and I would rate Broadway much higher than Domino. Seriously guys, if it was not for the super good deals in student discounts, I would not even consider Domino.

Waiting for Pick-Up Pizza

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Interestingly, this was the first time Khee Hwa and Charmaine had Broadway Pizza. Both of them agreed that the pizza was GOOD, and surprising to me, they prefer Meat Lover !! Well, there are plenty of other good options to choose from, and many other flavours which may taste better for others. Nevertheless, I love Meat Lover, because I am one.

It was indeed a filling dinner (well, 2 large pizza for 3 people, and large in Australia, is indeed large) and with full stomach, I was geared up for the Autumn Graduation for Engineering Schools in UWA.

That, we shall see in another entry.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

A Girl Drinking Bubble Tea in the City

Ah the joy of returning to Perth, and finding almost everything the same as they were before I left. Unfortunately, not everyone I know are still around, some people graduated, some people left, and some people just simply disappeared. I did not have the chance to say goodbye to everyone, since I myself have been suddenly away for so long. Coming back this time, I am even more grateful to see and know that, I still have friends here.

DEVIL owning your SOUL

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I have spent much time lately visiting and meeting up old friends I knew from Perth, and catching up with the lost times over coffee or lunch. It is interesting to see the progress in peoples' lives, and how they change and go on further in their journeys.

Of all the friends that I came with the first time when I started university education, those friends I have known from Inti who had credit transfers to UWA under the same engineering batch as me, there is only one person left. Her name is Sarah, and you may have heard or seen her enough previously in my blog, both when I was in Kuching and Perth.


Honey Milk Tea with Bubbles

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Watermelon Snow with Sago

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On a windy and chilly day, we took a bus ride down to Perth city, and walked up to Utopia, Northbridge for a glass of Cold Bubble Tea. Yeap, the weather was cold, and we just could not help it but have a cold drink. It was indeed sad, first Chun Chow left, then Wei Thien, and basically everyone else, and now only left the two of us from the original branch of friends. Of course, our network expanded over the years, and new circle of friends occupy most of the voids, but still, things just do not seem the same without the same people we used to hang out with. I am sure Sarah feels the same too.

This is Sarah

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Sarah Holding up Her Bubble Tea

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Sarah Sucking the Straw


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On the way back from the Bubble Tea, I suddenly felt a hunger attack, and since it was near dinner time, we decided to stop by Taka, a Japanese Restaurant that we students would love to frequent in Perth due to its low prices but good quantity + quality servings. Who needs Sushi King when there is Taka? Aaaahhhh, this is yet another unfair comparison, but still, when you have good food, you will learn to appreciate it. If only the same applies to friends and people in general, life would be much simpler, and the world, a better place. No?


Eel Don @ Taka

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Salmon Hosomaki Sushi

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We spent the entire afternoon chatting, and looking back into our past years in university, lamenting on how stressful and miserable our lives had been at times, when everything seem so wrong. Oh well, university life, what would it mean if there is no pain and suffering? Now that both of us are out of studies and academic life, somehow, it does not feel quite right, it is as if I am still stuck some place, and not moving that much further from where I was left.

Career life, are we actually prepared for this next phase after tertiary education? To some people, they afford the luxuries to opt for other alternatives, such as furthering studies to postgraduate level, or starting a business and many other different paths which all start from persistent ambitions. I, on the other hand, do not see much of a choice. Whether I feel like it or not, I have to fight my way to start a career as an engineer. It is foolish to take other paths with risks, knowing well those risks would eventually kill you.

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Career is a challenge. Heck, every single next step in our lives, no matter how small or big, will be a challenge. For those kiasu and kiasi Singaporeans (I did not say all) they would LOVE challenges and they welcome them with open arms. Sadly, or rather thankfully, I am not one, and hope will never be one of those.



Sarah giggled at the idea of how much energy and time being sacrificed, just to obtain that one piece of paper. To some people with more "advanced" brains, they are lucky indeed. For us mere mortals, it was not an easy task. It is unfair how this world works, and gosh, being alive for so long, I can honestly tell my children in the future from young NOT to expect the world to be fair. The amount of work will never be equivalent, and will always be much less than expected in the output. This is just a simple sense, that once the concept is grasped early enough, would save ourselves from too much misery.


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You see, even when I finished my uni in July 2006, I could not get that one piece of paper. I did not do my industrial training in time.

I had to return to Malaysia last year in September, I got myself an attachment with a company and completed my professional practicum.

And now I am back to Perth, SQUUUUEEEZZZZINGGGG that piece of paper out of that one miserable University !!!

GIVE ME MY BLARDY DEGREE DAMMIT !!!!


Well, after much running around, and fake smiles, finally...

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And whats inside..

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Coming soon, Autumn Graduation in University of Western Australia.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Cottesloe Sunset

Oh dear, I think I may have blogged about my short trip in KL a little stretch too lengthy, considering the fact that the trip was an unexpectedly short one. I departed KL on the evening of 15th March, and safely landed on Perth on the following day, early morning of Friday, 16th March. That marked yet another beginning of a life, which I have eagerly anticipated, and fought this hard to come this far. Perth, here I am.

People Everywhere @ COTTESLOE

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View from a Distance

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Coming back here does feel a little unusual, because I have spent a great deal of time back in Malaysia since my return last year, developing a much deeper connection with the place this time around, and as much as I love it here in Perth, Kuching will always have a special place in my heart for it has been my hometown. Being heavy hearted as I was, I travelled, and found my way back to this life which is full of the consequences caused by my previous choices. Choices that I have made, knowing fully that not everything will go as planned, and dealing with them has become somewhat a challenge that I should not run away from. Of course, whatever outcomes that may turn out to be, are not for me to determine and change, but rather to embrace and just walk along with an open heart, and learn to deal with whatever consequences that resulted from that choice no matter where it leads me to. I made the choice. I got myself here. So I just have to keep on walking.

Sometimes, I do wonder what it is like on the other road which I have not chosen.


There are times in life that you are so burdened with many thoughts and worries that your mind has been stringed to its widest limit, you just wish you could get away sometimes, and forget everything for a while. Take a pause. Take a break. screw kit kat Breathe in some fresh air, empty your mind, no worries, no troubles, no traumas, and no dramas, just plain peace, and quiet that everyone so deperately yearns for.

More People @ COTTESLOE

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HOUSE on Sand

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I do admit that my past 3 years in Perth was not a smooth sailing experience. I was on the verge of quiting uni, and giving up the entire opportunity more than once, and things were looking pretty horrible back in those times. Hopelessness was what I have gone through unwillingly, and such feeling of helplessness was not doing any good in shaping up who I have become today. I was never proud of many choices and decisions I have made, or the things I have done. Neither did I deserve the torture and pain I was going through. I admit I went through episodes of severe depression, and suicidal thoughts accompanied me to sleep night after night. Being in an entirely strange new place, with not many people I could trust and talk to openly around, things just seemed dark, very dark.

It was in those times of heavy thinking that, I have discovered the joy of going down to the beach.

Deep BLUE Waters

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From the place I stay, Cottesloe Beach is just 20-30 minutes bus ride away, and the beach is opened to the public. I find rest, and often let all my worries fade away as I just lay down on the soft white sands, listening to the thundering waves, watching boobies and looking to the impossibly deep blue skies, which is clearly reflected on the waters of the ocean that stretches as far as your eye can see. I do not know quite how to explain, but beach does have a healing effect on the mind, and it does good for me, refreshing me and somehow I do feel energized even just by being there doing nothing at all.

Is it not odd that the edge of the land, the opening to the waters can be such a popular spot for people to flock and flood into, making it such a popular place for all sorts of activities. Each and everyone of the activities result in so much fun and excitement, and just observing them from a far I could not help it but smiling not only on my face, but also from the inside.

Lazing off on Sand

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I have sought comfort at the beach, and find temporary peace, in which I gathered every bits and pieces of strength that is left in me to move on in this fast faced life. The beach means a lot to me, and it has reminded me of how I survived and triumphed over the tough times. It has this element of serenity and perfection that are just beyond description of any words. By just looking into the sea and the skies, I can actually feel, and I know that there are so much more in this world, and there are greater things, and greater powers out there than just who and what I am. There is so much that I could do, but there is so much more that I could not. There is so much I know, but even more that I do not know.


SUNSET @ Cottesloe

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Sunset Catch

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I guess the lesson that I gained would be accepting the weaknesses, setting aside the pride, learn from the mistakes, and do what I can within my power and capabilities to deal with the current situation. Things will usually find their way around, one way or another, and if we have done enough, there is nothing more we could do. The waters will always remain blue, and the waves will always crash on the shore. The birds will still fly high and scream like there is no tomorrow. The world goes on, so must we.

Looking to the sky @ COTTESLOE

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I would stay at the beach, all the way till sunset, watching the sun dropping into the far end waters. It is such an awesome view, and for those of you who have never watched sunset on waters before, you will be surprised on how fast the sun drops into the water. It was as if the ocean swallows the huge almighty sun, in just the matter of seconds. It also signifies how fast time moves, and how things can change in a small time frame. Day gives way to night. Nothing lasts forever.

So, anyone interested in joining me on looking to the skies of Cottesloe?

Friday, March 23, 2007

Meet the Bloggers @ KL

After returning to KL from the super-short visit to Malacca, I had 2 days left in KL, and I spent one whole day doing what I have planned and always wanted to do since I started blogging: Meet the KL Bloggers !! There are a few really interesting, cool, and awesome bloggers that I have been wanting to meet since my last visit to KL when I returned from Perth, but never made it due to certain unforeseen circumstances. Nevertheless, I did all I can and this time, finally, it really did happen.

The meet was set to 11am.

At Mid Valley.

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Since Cheng Sim arrived early, so we met up first at Coffee Bean. I had this non-caffeine drink, called Sunrise, which is actually milk and orange juice based, if I was not wrong. First time I tried something none-coffee from Coffee Bean.

SUNRISE @ Coffee Bean

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Soon, after, Skyler arrived, and not too long after that, Chloe arrived. After a few camwhoring rounds (this is getting too routine man !!) and indecisive moments, we headed up to Chilli, one of the retaurants serving western dishes with really cool atmosphere.

Camwhoring at Coffee Bean

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This meet was not just any ordinary meet, of getting to know new people, or meeting up fresh faces in blogosphere. It was nothing of that sort. In fact, I have followed their blogs from the very beginning, up to this very day and maybe missing out just one or two entries when I was lazy and I believe the same went vise versa. I consider myself their loyal reader, and being somewhat of a blogger-fan, but non-idolizing kind of fan, if you can understand what that means. We have known quite a significant bit about each other from reading each others' blogs.

Here are those wonderful gorgeous Bloggers!!


Cheng Sim (Banana Speaks) and Skyler

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Robin and Chloe (PurpleGirl)

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I started reading Cheng Sim's blog since I started my blog, and it has never failed to entertain me with her weird attempts of humour, and sarcastic views on life and all. I came to her blog via Chin Kian's. Being one of very first few people that was connected to my circle of blogging friends, she was indeed very special to me. How can anyone not relate to her, since there are so many other bananas out there, myself being one, and her banana way of writing her blog was nothing short of entertaining. She has interestingly twisted original weird jokes that even when I think of it sometimes I could laugh myself off !! Serious, no kidding mate... for example..

Puteri Gunung Redang !!!

Alright, a brief history lesson. Chloe was planning on a vacation to Redang... and I think Puteri Gunung Ledang was a hit movie that time around. Chloe mentioned she wanted to paint Redang Purple, and Cheng Sim shouted back at her:

"Who does Chloe think she is?? Wanna paint Redang Purple?? She thinks she is Puteri Gunung Redang isit???"

(Alright, I was too lazy to dig up the archives for the permalinks, at least the conversations were close to what I remembered...)



Having Lunch at Chilli

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My Cut Open Sandwich

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Alright, now moving on to Chloe, the Purple Girl !!! This girl has an odd fetish for anything purple, and love doing her nails all the time. She was also one of those very first few blogs that I read, if I am not wrong I got to Chloe through Arth or Cheng Sim, and have been following up ever since. In contrast to Cheng Sim, her blog takes on more to the personal level, describing mostly on heavier thoughts and feelings, pouring out, but highly entertaining in its own ways of course, I may add. I guess things got even spicier when we added each other on MSN, and soon after having Cheng Sim and Ivan, four of us in the same conversation window chatting about randomly crazy stuff.

And guess who arrived later to join us?


INFECTIONER !!!

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Eh eh cannot let him have all the spotlight !!! I was the only male before he arrived. Gaarrrrgghhhhh !!!

Now revert your attention back to me... me me me...

Seng Foo and Robin

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Reading Infectioner's blog until now, I have doubts whether his brain is composed similarly like ours. This guy can virtually make fun of anything, yes anything at all, which makes his blog rather unpredictable at times, from something shamelessly silly, to something heavily serious. In the midst of the craziness and talking cock, he did make sense in what he was saying most of the time, and usually he has something meaningful to say too. Hmmm, I could not recall how I stumbled into his blog though.

Really too bad I regretted not reading Skyler that much before meeting her up. Not that her blog is not attractive, it was just that Merv Kwok used to put up this wordings in his sidebar saying "if you do not read Skyler you are as good as dead". Well, being a rebel as always, not conforming to what the instructions say, I chose to stay away and well, it was just the way I was made to challenge things. I do regret not reading her though, since she appeared to be such a nice and interesting person to talk to !!

The GIRLS

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So how are the bloggers like in real life, in comparison to how they portray themselves to be in their blogs? Of course, one should not judge by just meeting up once, some would say one should not judge at all. Nevertheless, I thoroughly enjoyed my time with those lovely bubbly bloggers. Random conversations that tie up loose ends on facts that were left halfway hanging in the blogosphere, gossiping and gossiping were just plain fun. Like I always said, it is always great to meet up bloggers in real life after all those time reading and commenting on each others' blogs.


Ivan and Mike

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Since I was leaving to Perth the follwing day, this meet was sort of a farewell to me to. And Ivan and Mike, my dear friends from Kuching who were at KL that time came to bid me farewell as well.

And there was a shocking revelation to everyone.

I never had famous amos cookies before.

Not that it was anywhere near shocking to myself, but I guess everyone else thought the cookies were made of gold or something.

My First Famous Amos

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Kind and generous Mike bought me a packet of cookies from Famous Amos for me to sample before I leave Malaysia. Aaaahhhhhhh.... how thoughtful !!! Thanks so much Mike.

The Final Photo

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Darn, I look so worn out in this picture.


Thanks so much everyone for meeting me up. I know Chloe had to skip a class, and delegated her presentation to another person to come down just to meet me !!! I know Cheng Sim did not feel like leaving home because of the STPM results releasing the day after. I know Infectioner had to rush down all the way from far and skip a project meeting. Mike spent his free day off from work with me instead of relaxing and hibernating, and Ivan being as busy as ever with uni life. Everyone seemed to be occupied with life and its obligations, but still made time to meet up with this humble ordinary boy, me.

I am truly touched, and for that, I express my sincerest gratitude to each and everyone of you for being there !!!! I love you guys, and we must meet again the next time I travel to KL. MUST ok !!

To Cheng Sim, who stopped blogging half a year ago, please please please come back blogging again ya !!! We all miss you truly madly deeply !!

Side Note: Do take note of the last few photos, with the colours being oddly off. Man, I feel like slamming my camera on the floor.