Quote of the Day

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The Last Lecture

After watching Randy Pausch's video presentation in Oprah's show (this link is on this blog topic "Live"), I was all very keen to share this inspiring topic with anyone who cares to listen. In my sharing journey, a friend loan me his book "The Last Lecture" .I was totally taken and awed by his 40 odd years of life journey. Randy Pausch was an extraordinary person on earth and when he passed on 25th July 2008, he has done more than most people who lived a full life or is still living...... he is an icon we should introduce to our younger generations.

In this simple 6-chapter book of his, I have gathered a lot of knowledge I have not gotten in any of my readings.....

I am so taken in by his joy of life; how he carries on happily facing death, how he never give himself a moment of self-pity, sadness, depress or morose which naturally will be faced by people who knows they only have months to live. Values that he lives by .... honesty, integrity, gratitude, joy, dignity and self-esteem and achieving his childhood dreams.......

These are a few of the wisdoms he imparted..... his invaluable gift to all who reads his book.

  • ~~ doing the best you can with limited resources
  • ~~ if you can dream it, you can do it
  • ~~ when there's an elephant in the room, introduce it
  • ~~ we cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand
  • ~~ "I won the parent lottery" -- having good parents
  • ~~ never make a decision until you have to
  • ~~ just because you're in the driver's seat, doesn't mean you have to run people over
  • ~~"We know just how you feel, honey. And remember, when your father was your age, he was fighting the Germans." (this is a good one to use on complaining stress out kids... by changing the last phrase to suit the family background -- I particularly like this!)
  • ~~ When you are screwing up and nobody says anything to you anymore, that means they've given up on you.
  • ~~ many kids today are so coddled!
  • ~~ I don't believe in the no-win scenario
  • ~~ tenacity is a virtue
  • ~~ The brick walls are there for a reason. And once you get over them - even if someone has practically had to throw you over - it can be helpful to to others to tell them how you did it.
  • ~~ The brick walls are there to stop the people who don't want it badly enough. They're there to stop the other people.
  • ~~ It's easy to look smart if you're parroting smart people
  • ~~ People are more important than things
  • ~~ automobiles are utilitarian devices, not expressions of social status
  • ~~ No matter how bad things are, you can always make things worse; at the same time, it is often within your power to make them better
  • ~~ The truth can set you free
  • ~~ Luck is where preparation meets opportunity
  • ~~ Ernest is better than hip
  • ~~ Let's make a deal
  • ~~ Don't complain, just work harder
  • ~~ Treat the disease, not the symptom
  • ~~ Don't obsess over what people think
  • ~~ Look for the best in everyone
  • ~~ You are only as good as your words
  • ~~ No job is beneath you
  • ~~ Experience is what you get when you didn't get what you wanted
  • ~~ Rights come with responsibilities
  • ~~ All you have to do is ask
From all that I have learned from Randy and from his book "The Last Lecture" (you may get more from your different point of view), I would like to add a little of my own ....

"Go on those trips you've always wanted to take. Live in the moment, even if you or your close family do not have a terminal illness" In other words, do not wait for the inevitable before you put your dreams into action! Live and let live!

Thursday, October 29, 2009


I started by writing about "Death" which I do not think anyone who thinks they are in their right mind would want to talk about. However, I learn from viewing this video that "Death" is very much part of "Life".

The question here is whether anyone knows how to live? And.......

Talking about living..... I just came across this link from a forwarded email which I wish to include in this post so that we can keep this video handy and to be brought up every now and then to remind us how to live........its a lecture given by a man with 3 young children who has only a few more months to live due to pancreatic cancer.... an inspiring true life story.
Click here: http://video.google.com/googleplayer.swf?docId=8577255250907450469&hl=en

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Appreciating Nature

How does one appreciate nature, enjoy scenery, view natural phenomenon like sunrise, sunset, aurora borealis, midnight sun, clouds formation, waterfall, greeneries, lightning and others and marvel at their occurence; how do we allow it to be percepted by our senses......??I found the way the author of "Daughter of Heaven", Leslie Li's description very extraordinary clear and appropriate .....
How one should appreciate nature:-
I look at them as one should look at a vertical Chinese landscape scroll;
from top to bottom,
from far to near
.In the distance,
to the west,
was Folded Brocade Mountain - layer upon layer
of soft greens, grays, and violets,
like so many quilts folded neatly,
one piled atop the other.

To the east,
on the riverbank, the straight,
proud shaft of Wave Restraining Hill
was more than adequate to contain the Li River,
due to the dry season,

was almost at a standstill.
on the river bank

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Necessity is the Mother of Invention

I read the book "The Life of Pi" by Canadian author, Yann Martel and I have extracted a very interesting passage on one of Pi's methods of escape; the story is that he being a survivor of a shipwreck on how he (Piscine Molitor Patel) got through his ordeal..... "One of my favourite methods of escape was
what amounts to gentle asphyxiation.
I used a piece of cloth that I cut from the remnants of a blanket.
I called it my dream rag.
I wet it with sea water so that it was soaked but not dripping.
I lay comfortably on the tarpaulin and
I placed the dream rag on my face,
fitting it to my features.
I would fall into a daze,
not difficult for someone in such an advanced state
of lethargy to begin with.
But the dream rag gave a special quality to my daze.
It must have been the way it restricted my air intake.
I would be visited by the most extraordinary dreams,
trances, visions, thoughts, sensations, remembrances.
And time would be gobbled up.
When a twitch or a gasp disturbed me and the rag fell away
I'd come to full consciousness,
delighted to find that time had slipped by.
The dryness of the rag was part proof.
But more that that was the feeling that things were different,
that the present moment was different from
the previous present moment."

WARNING: No one should try this method of escape ... no matter what and we do not hold any responsibility of any eventuality. It is just something extraordinary that the writer of the book "concocted" - I hope, and which a blogger felt like sharing with others!! So be warned.
And, nevertheless, I still find the description very extraordinary and fascinating........

Monday, October 12, 2009

GGC - Another Attempt at Fun!

Two pretty faces....
One can see the food is an important part of a GGC's life.....nothing better than a good meal.We are back to our old haunt, after a break of a month! Another attempt at having fun again....

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Brunch at Loy's

Super Delicious.....
The Buffet Spread... just dig in!!
Best Carrot Cake, EVER!! Special Order accepted!
Our gracious hostess

Food glorious food....... a meal of home cooked "lontong" dishes by our gracious hostess goes a long way... what with good company and fun!!After eating ... its tall tale time!!

2 simple riddles:
Aunt Lucy has a big one
Aunt Molly has two small ones
A man has none and
A lady has it in front

Ramasamy has a long one
The wife will use the husband's one
The priest will not use his one
and your brother has one

Saturday, October 10, 2009

GGC - Happy Times

Hahahahahaha!! This is the best stress reliever!

Just give us a table and some chairs in a comfortable environment..... and you will see happy and laughing faces like this.................Golden Girls having another eat out and chit-chatting session.......

Familiarity Breeds Contempt

Are you familiar with this term "Familiarity breeds contempt". Actually the more I think about it the more I agree with it. Indeed when people gets too familiar with each other, we see a lot of the less desirable.

For example, my friend was telling me that she knows a couple who live with each other for seven years and finally decided to marry but the marriage lasted only 6 months. Why? I am sure its not the mere marriage certificate that changes the situation; it must be the human factor that has changed! Someone certainly let down their guard with the stability of marriage.....

We are definitely more polite with mere strangers we meet than we are with our friends, worst still our spouses, children, siblings or family members we lived with. With people close to us, we tend to forget to say "please", "thank you" or a simple "may I". Why? Simply that familiarity breeds contempt......

Maybe we should start looking at the way we treat our friends and love ones and put some effort into how we relate with each other ... you may just make the world a better place for some....
Do you see the rain? Or maybe not.
Maybe it is such a familiar sight that we have taken it for granted!!

Stop once in a while to smell the flowers, appreciate mother earth.
Do not allow contempt to get you, nature is always there to awe you!!

Monday, October 5, 2009


Death ~~ what is it to you?
Most people fear death and do not even want to talk about it or simply avoid the subject in totality.

Have you ever ponder what death is all about?

I like what I read, this definition about death in Tony Parsons' book "One for my baby"; the words of Canon Henry Scott Holland.....

He said....

"Death is nothing at all. I have slipped away into the next room. I am I and you are you. Whatever we were to each other, that we are still."

"Call me by my old familiar name, speak to me in the easy way which you always used. Put no difference into your tone, wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow. Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes we enjoyed together. Play, smile, think of me. Pray for me."

"Let my name be ever the household word it always was. Let it be spoken without effect, without the ghost of a shadow on it. Life means all that it ever means. It is the same as it ever was - there is absolutely unbroken continuity. What is this death but a negligible accident! Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight? I am but waiting for you, for an interval, somewhere very near, just around the corner. All is well."
For me, Holland's words are well said, simply makes "death" ~ the much feared word sounds so manageable, so easy to comprehend, something everyone needs to come to term with....... one fine day. The eventuality is definite ~~ we do not know when and how.

So, lets live our life like there is no tomorrow ....... taking each lovely day, one day at a time ...... always be thankful for yet another day to live.....

Let's live!!!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Nineteen Forty Nine

ninETEEn FOrTyninE
My favourite restaurant in Beijing city............
the food is good, with lots of choices and the food presentation second to none,
environment is superb and truly unique in its own style!Jimmie, the cricket taking a break and some sun tanning outside;
otherwise he will be entertaining the diners in the fine dining restaurant.
Jimmie sings non-stop until someone comes near, he can somehow
sense the presence of human.... all will suddenly be quiet.
The Noodle Bar.... where you are served the best ramen
with a choice of pork ribs or beef condimentsDisplay of attractive, love-to-own and expensive art sculptures for sales around the premises

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Dine & Wine

After 2 and a half years, finally the mystery woman was introduced to "Charlie"s angels.......:} in a restaurant called 1949 that serves Beijing Duck.... crispy, roasted, crunchy duck skin... yum yum....

The Chef carving the perfectly roasted duck.....

Duck skin served on white duck plate

condiments to go with the duck skin.... oh that little duck is not for eating, its a chopsticks stand

Diane and Marcella

Vina and Diane
(all natural shots.... no posing allowed)

This is the best and the fun part. The duck sauce requires some dressing. First you spoon the mustard and ginger paste on to the sauce in circular motion. Then you swirl your sauce plate in circular movement until a beautiful pattern comes on......you might not do very well on the 1st time.... just like me

Then you spoon the crispy fried shallots in the middle!

See what I meant? This one was done by the expert! Vina......

Oh, I forgot to take pictures of the best part of the meal, the desserts; they were so delicious that we can't wait to take picture before we dig in.....sweet rice balls with different flavour of ice cream inside and the best mini egg tarts I ever tasted... the tarts even have frosted decoration on it and its piping hot.....
Finally, while we dine and wine, we were being entertained by Jimmy, the cricket. He sang all the way through our meals until when we asked and the waitress brought him in his cage to introduce him, then he stopped singing (shy, we think)......special!!!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Beijing Skyline

Pictures taken on a clear sunny day .... the sun is setting over the Beijing skyline. The odd looking structure is the CCTV building just completed about a year ago?...
The CCTV Tower

The building is not on fire; though one beside the CCTV tower (the one on the right) was burnt down recently due to some fire crackers; the building was a brand new hotel supposed to open the day after the fire..... it is now a big eyesore!

The burnt building .... brownish in colour
These 2 pictures taken on a clear morning....