Family reunion over...for now

Three weeks of family reunion. As expected for a large group, there was hassle and stress planning and arranging activities even for a simple one such as what to have for lunch :)

But overall, it went well. Tiring on some days. Fortunately, we had adequate rest days. Hopefully my parents and my youngest sister shared the same sentiment especially since they don't get to see my other sister as often as I do. Yes, I'll be going to Australia this year, as I've done almost every year.

Parents are getting older and goodness knows how long more they have much energy to do much, especially travelling. Hopefully we'll have another reunion in the near future soon.

Guild Wars 2: Warrior update

In my previous post, I blogged about a new build for WvW using Settler armour. I'm pleased to say that I had all the exotic pieces and in fact I'm painstakingly replacing each one of them with ascended version (3 so far, 3 to go). I still, however, stick to the exotic Draconic skin because it looks nicer.

I'm happy that it has worked quite well for me during PvP and WvW. I had gotten some hate messages but I didn't care because it worked well to help my team mates and I didn't do anything illegal. Some people just have a narrow vision of what people should play. So childish lol. For such people, I use the command /block :)

In addition, I received a beautiful piece of hand armour skin: Radiant Vambrace. Hence, I updated the look of my warrior's outfit:

GW2_1

This was taken from the "Hero" panel. Ideally I would like to dye the outfit predominantly white to match the Radiant Vambrace but white dye is too expensive to purchase. After some research and trial and error, I settled on blue ice dye. The bluish colour is quite evident here, isn't it?

However, screenshot taken in natural light of the environment looks like this:

GW2_2

Looks almost white, doesn't it?

GW2_3

Here he is with Crimson Blade skin on his swords. I love this skin with its elaborate pattern and its red colour is a distinct contrast to the colour of his armour. Its original sword is the Zojya sword, named after a famous Asura.

GW2_4

Here he is with the Zenith skin on his longbow. The glowing nature of this skin complements the Radiant Vambrace well.

Dining furniture...or not

Dinning

I wonder how many customers managed to get dining furniture at this shop.

A racist experiment

Think it applies to sexual orientation too.

Nana's Green Tea @One Utama

This restaurant is tucked in a little inside away from the lower ground walkway of One Utama. I would have easily missed it if it wasn't my habit of looking around as I walk.

One fine day, after dinner, Ban and I took a look at their menu and decided that there were food that we both could eat. However, it took quite sometime before I remember to suggest going there for dinner :) We were on the way to Uptown to either eat at Hokano, Arata or Sukiya Gyudon when I suddenly remembered Nana's.

Nana's Green Tea 1

Their Wakame Tamago Udon (RM 15.80) price seems expensive for what they had but to their credit, it had generous amount of seaweed and udon. Their Dashi soup was unfortunately quite bland and probably needed a little more salt. The udon itself was not bad but certainly couldn't beat Arata's udon.

Nana's Green Tea 2

Nana's Green Tea 3

The Hoji (roasted green tea) Chocolate Parfait (RM 19.80) was expensive. A particular unusual ingredient is the piece of cake which tasted similar to butter cake in texture (something that I don't fancy) but with some extra taste. It went well with the whipped cream. The ice-cream itself was a mixture of Hoji and chocolate. The jelly was normal but lack of taste. The redbean paste was normal.

You know what was the sweetest ingredient? It was the cake. So surprising.

Would I go there again? The food was not bad but I could get them cheaper and better elsewhere. I understand they charged a premium price for the special ingredients they used e.g. Dashi soup, Hoji ice-cream but if they don't taste any better than the "normal" equivalent, then it's not worth paying extra for it.

Family reunion

Every year I will go to Australia to visit my sister (except for one particular year, I believed). This year will be no exception (cross fingers!) but it is extra special this year because she and her family are down here in Malaysia :) It's their first visit since almost 5 years ago.

We are (including my parents) at my youngest sister's place in Butterworth. We had vacation in Penang for a few days. Notably, we went to Kek Lok Si Temple and Botanical Garden/Penang Hill. More importantly, we went to sample different food at my sister's request :) Everyday tired though.

It's been a while since we are all together and it has been a good reunion thus far. Hopefully it'll be good throughout later.

Soy milk reconsidered

Since the last "problem" I had, it was smooth-sailing drinking V-Soy Multi-Grain every morning until about a week ago. For some strange reasons, I started having acid reflux that didn't really go away even until after dinner. By then, I had to take medicine lest I couldn't sleep at night.

I was worried that the soymilk could be the culprit. It occurred to me that I usually drink it together with oat. To be certain, I tried having oat without the soymilk one morning. Well, nothing happened. So I went ahead and had some soymilk. Nothing happened too!

Suddenly I thought of William's comment in one of my blog posts: "I can't take soy milk on an empty stomach. Causes pain." Perhaps in my case, it causes acid reflux instead?

I tried the above sequential intake 2 more times and once again, I was fine. Well, I'll take this good news :) At least, still can drink soymilk albeit lengthening my breakfast time.

Chilli's @Paradigm Mall

The one and only time I dined at Chilli's was years ago at the One Utama's outlet. One day, after a gym session, Ban suggested Chilli's as a change from our usual Sushi Zanmai or Sushi Q. Lo behold, it was just opposite the gym. So convenient :)

Chili's 1

Chili's 2

Chili's 3

We would have parked here if we had known how strict they were :P

Chili's 4

It was my first time seeing a menu that bothered to explain the difference between rare, medium-rare, medium, medium-well and well-done.

Chili's 5

Chili's 6

After considering a few options, I decided to take a chance on Lamb Shoulder (RM 33.95). Most lamb steaks I had were tough and so I was hoping this would be different.

Unfortunately, it wasn't. It was tough and a chore to eat. I guess my mouth got a good work out. Too bad because the rest of the dishes were quite good. The black pepper sauce was just nice and not too spicy. Although the mashed potato came with cream (rather than cheese as it was with Ban's dish), the potato's flavouring was more prominent than the mild cream. The poached carrots and long beans were bland and not buttered but went well with the rest of the dish, especially the strong black pepper sauce.

Guess it would be a long time before I try lamb steak again.

Car light on!

A month or so ago, it rained heavily on my way to my student's home. Once there, I hurriedly (was late because of slow down in traffic) got out of my car and into his house. In the process, I forgot to switch off my car headlights.

I wasn't aware of that until 1.5 hours later when the security guard (in charge of that gated community) informed my student of it. Panicked, I tried but couldn't start my car engine. My student's parents mechanic was situated in another area and so there was no point asking them for his phone number. Fortunately, I had phone number of a mechanic whose workshop was nearby. He used to be my sister's mechanic when she was living in KL.

The mechanic agreed to help me jumpstart my car but I needed to wait. Half an hour later, I discovered that he couldn't make a move because at that time there was no one else looking after the workshop. I had no choice but to wait as I did not know anyone else. I was getting very anxious as it was nearing the peak hour period of heavy traffic.

It was just on a sliver of hope that I once again tried to start my car. My student had the same idea too. Lo behold it miraculously worked! I kissed my car's steering wheel 3 times to thank it hahaha.


Evidence-based

As actuaries, our training is about making rational commercial decisions based on evaluating scientific and quantitative evidence. In a world where decisions are driven more by celebrity endorsement than by evidence, this is vital work.

- Sharanjit Paddam