Monthly Archives: November 2008

You know you’re getting old when you’ve attended someone’s, and also his daughter’s wedding, 30 years apart

I remembered that day in 1980 quite well. David Ng @ Ah Chai got married.

Time flew by quickly, then last night I went to his eldest daughter’s wedding reception at a top restaurant in Kota Kinabalu.

Congratulations to Siong Huei and Debra!

I gathered that the groom, Siong Huei is from Johor Bahru.

During the course of the dinner, it was very interesting to note something that I think would only ever happen in Sabah, which showcases the high level of racial integration in this state.

The two names on the stage backdrop are obviously Chinese, but the first Chinese song being played or sung during the night was at 9.40pm. In contrast, Kadazandusun songs by popular local singer Francis Landong filled the air much earlier on (note: most of the earlier songs were English ones):

Click here to see the video

We were runners-up in the Ministry of Finance table tennis tournament, 22nd November 2008

The tournament coincided with the 7th major flood to hit Penampang this year.

I was supposed to be at Foo Chow Hall, the tournament venue latest 9am, but could only leave the house around 11.30am, arriving just in time for our 2nd group match against the State Treasury which we won 3-2 (we’d lost the first group match against Yayasan Usaha Maju 2-3) and hence qualified us for the quarterfinals.

In the quarters, we defeated 5-time and defending champions the Ministry of Finance 3-2 after trailing 1-2. Credit must be given to Sariwan and Arjuna who won the heart-stopping last match 3-2.

In fact, they were arguably the best combination in the whole tournament; playing in the open category they were undefeated in all the 5 matches they played.

In the semifinals we defeated Sabah Credit Corporation 3-2, whom we’d never beaten in previous tournaments, in another come-from-behind victory.

In the final we finally met our match in Borneo Housing (runner-up in the previous tournament), losing 1-4. Our previous undefeated veteran pair of Voo & Daniel lost a titanic match 2-3 after initially trailing 0-2. Our women’s doubles and mixed doubles combination could not match their opponents who I was told “imported” from Borneo Housing’s Sarawak branch and were ex-state paddlers.

Still, this was an improvement. In the last Ministry of Finance sports carnival, we finished 3rd.

So, in this year’s sports carnival, I’ve got two medals, after the bronze in the badminton tournament held on the 9th and 10th August.

Penampang floods for the 7th time in 2008, 22nd November

After a lull of about 3 months, where other areas in Sabah flooded except for Penampang, the 7th major flood in Penampang this year finally came this morning around 2.40am, when the 3rd and final flood warning siren blared and water started flowing in.

After moving the cars, we went back to sleep. When I woke up around 6am, the water level downstairs was almost waist high.

It was a “slow and steady” type of flood, where the water level would slowly rise and in turn, slowly go down.

Around 11.30am I went off to play in a table tennis tournament (will write more about that tomorrow).

When I arrived back home around 5pm, the water level downstairs had only gone down several inches!

It fully subsided around 8.30pm.

… when the rains fall all day it usually becomes so cold at night that you think you’d need a heated blanket …

In Penang for CNE6 certification

A colleague and I were in Penang for a few days for the IPv6 Certified Network Engineer (level 1) course and certification at the NAv6 [National Advanced IPv6] Centre of Excellence, Universiti Sains Malaysia.

With us were 6 other participants, 4 from Bank Negara Malaysia and 2 from SUK Selangor.

Special thanks to the guys from Bank Negara who were kind enough to bring us on a quick tour of Penang.

We might be back here next year for Level 2 and of course the delicious yet much-cheaper-than-Kota Kinabalu Penang food.

Frames for the holiday season

Holiday frames, in conjunction with the upcoming holiday season, are now being offered by Zenni Optical on its website (online catalogue).

There is a big number of glasses’ frames available there. Hence, glasses frame shoppers are more than likely to find one that best suits their requirements.

The materials used include plastic, metal alloy, stainless steel and pure titanium.

There are detailed descriptions (with of course photos) of each one, with information on dimensions of lens (width, height & bridge), frame (width, height & bridge), temple arm length, weight, index lens and colour choices.

Continue reading

Sabah’s first blogging priest?

Update 22nd November 2008

Other Sabahan RC priests’ blogs:

Rev Fr Erik Jerome: and He even has a Friendster account. First blog entry was in February 2008.

Rev Fr Francis Dakun:, first entry March 2008.

Rev Fr Peter Abas:, first entry August 2008.


Rev Fr Nicholas Stephen is a Sabahan Roman Catholic priest, and probably Sabah’s first blogging priest.

His blog contains many thought-provoking quotations, as well as stories about his experiences.

Fr Nicholas meeting Pope Benedict XVI

The earliest post in his blog is dated 20th March 2008, an Easter greetings from Rome.

Papier Mache’s “Nung Olingan Oku Dia” up for Pertisa’s 2008 Awards

My brother’s band Papier Mache‘s Kadazandusun song “Nung Olingan Oku Dia” has been listed in the “Most Popular Song” category for Pertisa’s 2008 Awards.

BTW, Pertisa is short for “Persatuan Artis Tempatan Sabah” (Association of Sabahan Local Artistes).

A live, acoustic version of that song, performed on 18th October 2008 at New Pusakag Cafe, Donggongon is available on youtube.

A preview of the studio version of the song is available at their website (the 4th song in the playlist).

Voting commenced on 17th November 2008 and will close on 29th November 2008.

Winners are those who get the most number of votes via the local paper New Sabah Times.

How to vote:
1. Get/purchase/borrow New Sabah Times newspaper during the voting period.
2. Locate and cut out the form – should be somewhere in the middle.
3. Mark your selection with a ballpoint pen.
4. Send the form to the address stated in it.

Detailed info is available at Pertisa’s blog.

Full list of nominees.

Thank you for your support!

Tan Sri Bernard Dompok is Acting Prime Minister of Malaysia on 19-20 November 2008?

The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi has left for Uzbekistan for a 4-day official visit. He will only be back on Friday the 21st of November.

The Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak will leave for Peru on Tuesday, the 18th of November and from there to New York and expected to be back only early December.

Today, Lim Kit Siang held a press conference at the Parliament lobby and asked: who will lead the country in their absence?

He was quoted to have said that it has been at least 30 years since both the top two were not in the country simultaneously.

Even the likeliest ones to be Acting PM are or will also be out of the country:
(i) Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin will be leaving together with Najib.
(ii) Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar, ditto.
(iii) Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz (PM’s Dept) is in Abdullah’s entourage.
(iv) Senator Tan Sri Amirsham Abdul Aziz (PM’s Dept), ditto.
(v) Datuk Shafie Apdal (Unity, Culture, Arts and Heritage), ditto.
(vi) Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin (Higher Education), ditto.

Then Lim asked the tantalizing question:

Can it be the most senior minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Tan Sri Bernard Dompok or the newly elected MCA president, Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat?

Note: someone commented that there were two other occasions in the last 3 years when they were both out of the country at the same time. Still, have so many top-ranking officials been out of the country at the same time that it’s unclear who’s in charge?

The Star, 17th November 2008

Sub RM200 per night hotels in Malaysia which have free internet access accessible from guest rooms

Requirements to make the list:
- hotel room charges must be RM200 or less nett per night, inclusive of breakfast.
- legally accessible i.e. offered as part of the hotel’s services
- wired or wireless

From the internet, it seems that only the following hotels currently make the grade:
(i) @Ease Boutique Hotel, Sandakan
(ii) B-Suite, Penang. This one I’m having a first-hand experience right now.
(iii) Imperial International Hotel, Kota Kinabalu [subject to confirmation]

If you have any others to add to the list, please inform me. Thanks!

BTW, I’m writing this in Penang, a place where cheap and tasty food are aplenty: the diet pill beckons?

30-minute live interview on RTM Sabah Vfm

The music group I’m involved in part-time, Papier Mache was interviewed live on RTM Sabah Vfm last night starting 9.30pm for 1 hour.

Well, talking time was only about 30 minutes after considering songs played.

I think it was the first time they spent so much time on radio, very good experience for them.

However, only 4 bandmembers could make it out of the total 7.

It was done in Dusun language (a Kadazandusun dialect).

Here’s the recording (4 parts on youtube):

Click here to listen to the audio