Tuesday, December 30, 2014

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies ~ Greed Kills *Spoiler Alert*

I am not a fan of sci-fi kind of film or books. Not into Harry Potter, Star Wars, Lord of The Ring dan sewaktu dengannya. However, being a mom with 3 kids who follow this kind of movies, plus a husband who also enjoy this genre, I am oblige to follow. If I am given a choice, I would rather drown myself reading some romantic books (or some friends call it a Bimbo books so be it) or watch another romantic comedy movie at the next hall) One of the many sacrifices a mom has to do.

So when the kids begged me to take them to watch the latest edition of The Hobbit, I gave in. Made online reservation(and got RM20 discount for it! Woot! Woot!) and told the kids we will be leaving right after solat maghrib. With my condition, I don't really like to pray at public surau. I try to manage my outdoor activities based on prayers time so we don't have to perform prayers away from our home). However, timing is rigid as we only have less than an hour of traveling plus parking and purchase of popcorn time combined.

I must confess, I hate violence kind of movies or series (as opposed to my better half who prefers the-more-people-die-the-better kind of movies). More than 50% of the time throughout the movie, I was either closing my eyes, hiding behind my husband or pretend to look down). When I was looking at the screen, I realised I learned some positive values from the movie.

How greed in leaders will cause serious damage to the country. How Thorin, despite warnings from his team on what had happened to his grandfather, still fell into the same trap of prioritising guarding the gold and entered into war then compromise and share with the rest of the nation. This is when greed took over a man, a leader who has always been reasonable and put the needs of his people before his.

Thorin is fortunate. He has followers who are still willing to tell him when they think he is wrong. "You sit here with a crown upon your head, yet you are less than you were before". How Fili and Kili are not willing to hide behind the fort when the rest of the dwarves are fighting their battle. How many of us are willing to stand up when they feel their leaders are wrong. And the most important question, how many leaders are willing to listen and consider changing when they are told that they are wrong.

Different from the dragon slayer, Bard the Bowman, he said something like this "We must look to our own. We must care for those who are injured" When he negotiated with Thorin, he did not do it just for him. Even at first the elves leader, Thranduil, decided to go into war as he did not see the point of negotiating, Bard pleaded to be given one chance to negotiate. If Thorin is a man of his word, Bard don't even have to negotiate. And there will be no war among the goods and they can join forces and fight the evil forces. Somehow, this situation sounds familiar huh?

I am glad Thorin came to his senses (and he no longer wear the crown). Before he died, *spoiler alert* he said something like this "If more people valued above gold, this world would be a merry place".

And of course being someone who enjoys romantic movies, when Kili died *another spoiler alert*, the heartbroken Tauriel said "If this is love, I do not want it. Take it from me. Please. Why does it hurt so much". Oh my oh my, menikam kalbu!!!

So, yes, amazingly I survived this movie and bonus points, I learned something from it! 

Lepas ni kita tengok cerita Mama pulak yer....

Friday, December 26, 2014

Social Experiment - Viva vs Starex

It always puzzled me how people are always quick to assume. I am sometimes are guilty of this as well. So, I decided to social experiment.

I am not into cars. I think this one of the few traits in me which connected me to the women side. I identify cars by either cantik or tak cantik, or the colours of the cars. And that's that. Don't ask me about the engine performance, fuel consumption or pick up best tak? No idea, no clue.

We have 2 cars. One is for town drive and I am always the one using this car, Viva. I do have this accountant DNA in me, I don't invest in things that depreciate. And car is one of them. I buy cars for the practicality and as long as I don't feel embarrass driving it. Via is a good deal. Easy to park due to the size.

The other car we have is more for long distance drive and for family travel. We decided on that car so that we can bring both of our parents on road trips. Before that, if we bring one parents, we have to leave the other. Now, all can come! Good deal!

However, what I noticed, how differently people treat us just as they see us arriving in different type of cars. Wanted to prove a point, I decided to come with different car to a same event, at the same hotel.

First day, I arrived in Starex. My better half dropped me off and the moment he drove by the lobby, I was immediately greeted with someone opening the door for me and wishing me Good morning in a very warm manner. It felt really good, like a VIP. He even asked me which function I was heading to and gave me the direction to the function room.

Second day, we arrived at the same hotel, this time in a Viva. And as predicted, no one came to the door. No warm greetings, not even offering to give directions to the function room. I am still the same person, coming to the same hotel, dressed the same way just arriving in a different car. Just look how drastic the change in treatment. Interesting.

The same thing when we arrived in luxury branded boutiques. If I come after work, all dressed up in my office suit, nice shoes, branded handbags, I am welcomed like a potential customer, being showed around and given the privilege to touch and feel the shoes or handbags. However, I visited the same boutique, on weekend, wearing my jeans and blouse, normal weekend bags and just sandal, I am being monitored as if I am about to shoplift and the look given to me, "You can't afford this, why don't you just leave and go to where you belong". How shallow huh?

This made me reflect, I should not fall into this same trap and assume the economic status has direct correlation with the way people dress. What's the point of dressing like a million dollar person when you have only RM5 in your purse. And imagine losing million dollar customer just because s/he dressed like someone who can't afford to buy things.

Yes, every experience in life has lessons. If only we think hard enough to learn from it :).

Have a great weekend all!

Sunday, December 21, 2014

While Bali is still fresh in my mind

Yeah yeah. 2 blog entries in a row. What an achievement right? So, spare the sarcasm ya folks.

Anyway, earlier this year, we planned to go to New Zealand and perform umrah at the end of this year for our family vacation. However, due to my current pregnancy condition, my gynae did not allow to take flight which are more than 4 hours. We shortlisted few destinations and Bali was selected cause I had this sudden crave to eat Ayam Tulang Lunak which I had in Bali 2 years ago. I wanted it so bad that I can feel it in my throat.

The itinerary for this vacation is.............EAT, SLEEP, EAT, SLEEP and EAT some more. At least, that is my itinerary. It's not our first time to Bali so we forego visiting the tourist spots like Ubud, Uluwatu, Kintamani, Tanah Lot to name a few. What I love the most about Bali is the villa which has private pool and kitchen facilities. So, that will make me reach my objectives ; Kids can keep themselves entertained by having a pool right in front of them. They can berendam and swim at any hour of the day sampai kecut. No restriction. And with a kitchen, I can satisfy my agenda, to eat, eat and eat. And when I am tired, I sleep :). For someone who never had a maid, to have someone else preparing breakfast is just awesome. That's part of the villa package.

I had everything I have on my wishlists ; Ayam Tulang Lunak, Seafood at Jimbaran and Nasi Padang. And the best thing is I get to do some shopping too.

This was also kids first experience travel via business class, all thanks to MAS for providing good deal. They were excited of course, and love being spoilt on board. And of course able to utilise the Golden Lounge is a bonus. Even when our flight got delayed, that didn't bother them that much. They get to use the game room and eat as much as they can. That really helped to make the trip awesome.

Some of my friends asked, is it convenient to go to Bali and have access to halal food. Actually, you just need a reliable driver and we are fortunate to have one which as introduced by Red Mummy when we first went to Bali. Not only we get to enjoy halal delicacies, our driver also make sure we get access to prayer room or mosque. Happy to share the contact for those who interested to explore Bali.

Bali is indeed an island full of culture. That makes them unique hence why they become one of the preferred tourists spots on top of having amazing surf beaches.

Yes, Bali. We will definitely come back Insyallah. This time, with Tiny :)


Saturday, December 20, 2014

What do I really want in life

Apart from fatigues from pregnancy, this past 2 months have been not just sucking my energy, also made me feel so emotionally drained. One thing that people close to me(and not many of this kind of people) can attest to, I am an individual difficult to understand. Sometimes I want to laugh in front of some people's face when they tell me or others "Aku kenal Liza tu, dia macam tu, nie bla bla bla". As if they really know!

I am a serious person. I am serious when I work, I am serious when I take care of my family, I am serious when I protect my loved ones and I am dead serious when I am having fun. I don't believe in doing things half cooked. Either you do it or you don't. Either you are here or you are not. I don't believe doing things in between. And of course, this may not resonate well with some people. Never expect for many people to understand anyway.

And on a contrary despite being active in social media, I am actually a private person. I don't share many personal details about my private life. That is why I love social media. I get to choose what I want and don't want to share. And believe it or not, what you see is not even 10% of my real life. Fool you, didn't I?

I love everything about my life. It may not be perfect to some but it's just perfect for me. And one thing for sure, I love my job. I love what I do, I see true sense of purpose on the aim and objective of my job. Perhaps, due to this coupled with a serious person I am, it drained me. I pushed not only myself, also people around me to achieve what I feel is not impossible. My mistake, as per many of other mistakes I did, I thought people share the same motivation. Due to that, I was left frustrated and bruised by how others react. What pushed me down the most was when my integrity and amanah were questioned. For a moment, I felt so alone. Maybe this is what they say, lonely at the top.

My better half continues to be my sounding board, the only person I turn to and fully trust. And he said, it comes with the territory. I can always choose to give up and do ordinary work like other normal people do and forget about trying to make a difference in the space I am currently working in. But then I need to question myself, am I satisfied to leave things in status quo and just sit, watch and wait for others to take care of it. If I can answer yes, with conviction to this question, then he told me to go ahead and give up. Whatever decision I make, he will give his full blessings.

He is right (and I hate that he is ALWAYS right). Should I let few people who just don't understand or refuse to understand cloud my judgment and decision on how I should move forward. What I need now is to recollect myself, and gather my thoughts and energy. Focus on things and people who matters. Yes, I need to do just that.

A hug from my man and it's just magical, things just got better. And his final word for that night, "You know the right thing to do. As long as your nawaitu is pure, you will be fine. Allah kan ada"

If I ever forget to tell you, my better half, I love you so much. And I am so glad I am fortunate to have you in my life.