Wednesday, June 8, 2016

For he whom is asleep, on a journey, home with the Lord

Part One
In remembrance of my beloved greatfather, Mr Wong Seik Kum, aged 82,  born on 04-04-1934. Called home to be with the Lord on 04-06-2016, 5.12am.

He was so very much lively just a few weeks ago. Despite with difficulty breathing and irregular condition, he hung on till the very last. Whenever I visited him at the hospital, I would massage his hands and legs, urging him do some light exercises while on bed. His hands were soft to the touch, his smile as gentle and sweet. He was happy every time we visited him.
Growing up, I remember grandpa as a caring figure yet a strong-willed father to my dad, uncles and aunts..
He would often remind us to work hard in our studies or work, not to stay out late, to listen to our parents, be good kids, and not to drink and smoke. His teachings played a part in shaping who I am today.
Grandpa was a fabulous chef, specialising in Cantonese cuisine. On festive occasion like Chinese New Year and Dragonboat Festival, he would prepare guo jing zong, (dumplings), fattchoy donggu, lotus leaf rice, lotus root soup and more. I was told that his dimsum (siew mai) was excellent too, but I was probably too young to remember.
We will miss you very dearly Grandpa. Thank you for loving us to your best and always been so doting.

"13 But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope. 14 For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep."
- 1 Thessalonians 4:13-14

Part Two
An overcast sky and heavy heart filled this morning.  It was raining as we sent yeye off his last journey from earth. Tears of sadness poured down from our eyes. He had a lifetime of 82 years, of which 23 years he was in mine.

I will always remember the feeling we all had. Those swollen eyes, uncontrollable tears,screams of farewell at Hall 3. That moment when his body was wheeled in and out. And that feeling of not being able to touch and feel him anymore. I will miss the feeling of his warm soft hands, albeit being swollen.

As we leave mandai, the clear blue sky greets us. I think of it as a sign that God has all things planned.

The Bible shares three metaphor of death. As fallen asleep, a journey and going back home with the Lord.
Now that he has gone to a better place. I pray that he is now with the Lord and has found peace, happiness and comfort in the land above. No sickness or pain again.
I believe he is smiling down at us, that he shall watch over his children and grandchildren.

I will always miss you yeye... 08-06-2016, 2.29pm.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Living in a HDB in Singapore means that you're closer to your community, you are exposed to what people are doing daily and often you see/hear things that attracts your attention. This afternoon I was distracted by a loud commotion coming from the void deck.

It sounded like there was a fight going on between a male and female. The female was screaming madly as though she was badly injured with each blow. I assumed this as I didn't see it first hand.

Coming to my point, how many of you have witnessed/heard a fight going on and actually stepped in to help? I am glad my neighbourhood has people who are helpful. Many men came down to help/call the police. The screamings stopped after people stepped in. Shortly after the police came. 

Often enough in today's society, we see that people are beginning to lose a sense of humanity in them. Such as photographing an accident/fight instead of helping the victims first. What is the priority? Getting online virality isn't the focus. As a human, we should be conscious of what's happening around us and seek help for others if need to or simply lend a helping hand.

That said, if the situation is dangerous, you would definitely need to wait for help to arrive or distract attackers. In the meantime, try to recognise the attackers so that you can be a witness to the crime. 

Regardless the root of the problem, we should all help each other. We should not be quick to judge, for example: the victim may have done something wrong to anger the attacker, or simply ignore the situation. For instance, you don't know them so you don't have to help / someone else will help...
This my friend, is the incorrect attitude that we should not be nurturing. It is the role of the police who investigates and the judge to sentence. 

Someone who has lived 37 years more than me could actually tell me not to bother because I don't know the full story and the parties involved is not my neighbor (in her exact term). 

Let me share with you other real life situations that has happened around Singapore: 
1) Boy A does not like Boy B. Boy A and his gang of friends beat up Boy B. 
Anyone who witness the situation should call the police first.

2) Fire breaks out at an opposite block. 
Anyone who sees a fire/thick smoke, should call the police first. 

Always put yourself in others' shoe. If (1) or (2) happened to you or people you know, what would you do? As a victim what would you want others to do if they see such things happening? I end with a quote, Treat others the same way you want them to treat you. (Luke 6:31)  and I hope that you, who have read this, will always extend a hand to anyone in need. 

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Open Water Dive Course

At some point of growing up, you'd probably had to go through swimming lessons. Be it primary or secondary enrichment class or that your parents wanted you to take up the skill as a sport. I recall rushing to swimming lessons held at Bedok Swimming Complex when I was just 7 years old (primary one), right after my afternoon classes.

So fast-forward the years, I was awarded with basic swimming cert after all those lessons. You know swimming is a just word until you put physical action to give it a meaning. I still fear about not being able to reach the bottom of the pool but I am not alone.

Despite that, I signed up for Open Water Dive course at ADEX 2015 earlier this year, after persuasion from B. To be honest I wasn't keen about diving except to visit those beautiful waters. My first scuba diving experience was in Boracay in mid-2014. It was amazing and the waters were so clear and pretty.

Back to Open Water Dive course. There's 3 parts to it - Theory, Practical (Pool session), Practial (Sea).

For Theory, there'd be 2 weeknight lessons at your chosen dive company. Mine was at Eko Divers. I managed the theory fairly ok because I spent months going through the contents/questions inside the book, before attending the classes. During the classes (3.5hrs), you'd have to sit through videos and revising questions. On the 2nd session, the dive instructor would teach you how to read the Dive Table. Afterwhich, you'll be tested with a series of questions. The papers will be marked and you will know whether you pass or fail.

For Practical, you'll have to attend a dive practice at a swimming pool, which should be at Outram Secondary School. During the practices you'd have to swim 200m (no time limit) and tread water for 10 mins. Both I did horribly. I think if you don't do too well, you'd have to do it once more, either at the end of the practice or the next day/weekend.
The pool session (est 6 hrs) at 2m depth, will equip you with the skills that will be tested in the sea. There will be a dive instructor assigned to a group. Depending on the number of sign-ups, but I had 6 in my group including myself. My French dive instructor was heavily accented so we had to be extra attentive.

Here's a list of skills that you will learn (in no particular order):
1. Mask clearance - partial and full
2. Mask removal and clearance. Tip: if water enter your nose. Press it and blow. It should clear!!
3. Recover regulator + Clear regulator
4. Alternate Air Source (means for you and your buddy to share air as one of you have ran out of air)
5. CESA - Controlled Emergency Safety Ascend (You'd also require to inflate your BCD orally)
6. Pre-dive safety check - BWARF. Stands for BCD, Weights, Air, Releases, Final ok
7. 5 point descend - SORTED. Stands for Signal, Orientate, Regulator, Time, Equalise, Descend
8. Assemble, put on, adjust and dissemble scuba gear
9. Clear water from your regulator
10. Use your SPG (Submersible Pressure Gauge) and signal your remaining air
11. Recognise and respond to hand signals underwater
12. Demonstrate neutral buoyancy / hovering
13. Take off scuba gear and wear back on at surface.
14. Swim and navigate with a compass at surface and at depth (tried this during the sea session. I think it varies from instructors & whether your group have more than enough time)
15. Remove and replace weights at surface
16. Cramp release on buddy and on yourself at surface.
17. BCD oral inflation at surface and at depth
18. Tired diver tow for 25 metres
19.Remove weights, scuba unit and fins in water too deep in which to stand and exit
20. Post-dive care of scuba gear

That sounds like a whole lot of skills didn't it? Fret not and keep a happy positive learning attitude. This session is really essential for you to learn. However you may tend to forget if you dont practice the skills, plus there'll be a gap period (weeks or month) from your pool and sea session. So do watch videos as well to help you understand and recall the skills. There are plenty available on YouTube.

Find out how to execute certain skills here.

I chose Bintan for my Practical (Sea session) because it is 1 hour ferry ride away. Compared to Tioman which one have to take a ultra long bus ride and then a boat ride to reach. Anyone with motion sickness should also bring along your pills.

We were tested with the above skills in under seawater. The visibility wasn't fantastic, about 2-3m, and not that clear. But it was a pleasant experience. I am contented that I am completed this course. Achievement Unlocked! :)

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

today marks the last day of 2014. it has been an unbelievable journey this year. a year of freshness in the open environment and a year of growing up.

i haven't actually blogged about turning 21 in the last quarter of 2014. there was no fancy party nor celebration or any kind, just had a simple dinner and a trip to Alive Museum with the sisters and our partners.

now back to the part of 2014's conclusion.
1) took on my first official full-time job. it is a challenge, but i'm glad that i survived, against all odds and all the hardships and happiness. i looked back at this role that i have engaged in since 2012 (3 months), 2013 (4 months), 2014 (1 year) and am relieved to say that i've no regrets. it was a step into the industry to learn and discover new things. satisfied that i did and still am.

2) developed a deeper attachment with my family - love is that simple. i don't know about you guys, but while growing up, i never really had a comfort home because everyone was busy working/studying and minding their own business. then i grew up and noticed the change - age/care/faith. i'm also thankful that we have taken things to stride and sharing more love. family is the one who never fails, never leaves no matter what happens. i'm also beginning to see how life is so fragile and precious after my grandfather fell ill. but the comforting news to hear is that he have received Christ as His Saviour after many years being devoted to other religions..

3) traveled to Boracay and Taiwan this year. it is just beautiful to travel and to experience the wonderful creations of the world myself. Boracay was just awesome that i will never forget, the sun sea and sand was so relaxing, while Taiwan was an eventful trip that saw us rushing around. will blog about taiwan next time

there's so much to say about personal development and there're definitely more things to work towards in 2015. but for now, i'm just truly thankful to have made it through and for being safe and healthy this year,
for now, i'll just sit by the digital screen in the walls of my home...

Excited for new beginnings in 2015 and hope you are too. Happy new year eve!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Boracay Day 5
Part 1.5

What is a holiday without alcohol? After the previous night, we slept in and missed our Scuba session. I call it the Rest & Relax Day. Y'know most of the time when you're away on a trip.. it is still quick-paced because you have to rush to meet schedules etc.

We laid in the soft white sheets with the comfort of the air-conditioning blowing gently on our faces.. That moment was wonderful and we didn't want my holiday to end. Our hotel neighbors from California had another 2 weeks to stay whilst we had a day. No wonder friends have the thought of emigrating to seaside and live by the beach

Towards the late afternoon, we went by the beach to capture moments to keep as memories. Beautiful island with a scenic view.

I love holidays, who doesn't?

Boracay Day 6 
Part 1.6 

Last day of the trip!!! This picture encourages you to book a ticket and fly there now right?!!?

We planned for our scuba at 9am because we had to leave the island at 11.30am. Mad rush but truly the best water sport that I have enjoyed!

First off, the instructors brought us through a quick lesson on communicating underwater and the use of the equipment. Throughout the session, I was freaking out about going underwater, although excited but really nervous about the outcome.

We tried some poses to get comfortable in the water. I also picked up a seashell on the sea bed. There you see it lying on hand. The red surface caught my eye and I couldn't resist not having it accompany me for my trip to commemorate my first dive trip! :) 

The dive instructors brought us to an area with a stone heart, for photo opportunity. Amazing that they actually transported it into the sea for an extra touch-point for tourists!

I like how the sea bed is layered with the natural elements that are found deep under the ocean. It reminds me of the powerful Him whom created every piece of earth's beauty. 

Right after the dive trip, we hurried to check out and rush to the port to meet up with the travel partners for our ferry. Going back home feels comforting but leaving the sunny island of Boracay was definitely a reluctant move.  

Skipping the nitty gritty details of travelling, here're some interesting photos to share on our flight back. Any idea what is that sand-like landscape?

Goodbye Boracay, I'll come back for you soon. xoxo