Saturday, February 28, 2009

Crime Rate

One of the fears that I had returning to Malaysia was the crime rate.

Robbery, theft and crime seems to be at a peak.

Everybody is living in fear.

Something is obviously not right.

The neighboring coutries like Singapore and Thailand is surprisingly safer. What is happening?

I agree with a friend of ours who suggested that we the citizens should be given the right to protect ourselves with weapons. Be it legalised gun, "zapper", pepper spray, etc. Of course, the issue has always been argued is that when you legalise these weapons, then, criminals can easily get to them. Well, look at it now. Its not legalised but there are so many criminals having weapons. We the innocent citizens are consistently being bullied and living in fear.

Why is it that we are not given the right to defend ourselves?

Friday, February 27, 2009

We Arrived in Malaysia

We arrived in Malaysia at about 12am on Thursday and reached home almost 2am. That's what happens when you try to get a promotional rate via Airasia for THB299. Haha. For a family of four, it did not cost more than THB5,000 / RM500 for a one way trip to Kuala Lumpur. For the last 3 years, we have been on Thai Airways that Ethaniel (7+ years old) was so used to it. So, this little boy was expecting free drinks and food. Unlimited coca-cola, sprite and Pepsi. I told him that Airasia charge for their food. He frowned a little and said, "The other airplane gives free food." That happened when the Company paid.

With a wide smile on my face, I tried to explain to him that the cost of food has been incorporated into the flight ticket at Thai Airways. He seemed to understand but still not very pleased. Come on, you should be happy we don't have to take a 48 hours train / bus ride back to Malaysia.

We bought a bottle of mineral water for THB60/RM6 and since the Nasi Lemak was finished, the boys ordered a bowl of Maggi Noodles. Honestly, we had a full meal before boarding at the Foodcourt in the Suvarnabhumi Airport. Joel had 2 bowls of noodle, Ethaniel had 2 bowls of noodle plus some of my Deep Fried Som Tam. Where does all those food go? Or... Is plane food that yummy to children?

Our first day in Malaysia, we feasted on Nasi Lemak, Mee Goreng, Rojak, ice lemon tea (mamak style), teh tarik (tea), Milo ice (mamak style) and Maggi Mee Goreng. That was just brunch. Dinner we had black noodles, fried rice and hor fun.

It has been a feasting 2 weeks. Non-stop eating at farewells in Bangkok and then back to Malaysia, feasting again on Malaysian food. This time the craving for Malaysian food was not strong because its no rush. I am back to stay. I can take my time to eat all those food.

We visited our newly rented home. Its an old house which needed some touch-up. They were doing painting and polishing of the parquet flooring. After seeing it, Joel said, "It sure needs a good clean up!" It was dusty everywhere, the garden unkept and the back area had rusty fencing. But I am sure with some help from us, as a team, it will be as homely as can be. I like the location mostly. Its a 5-10 mins walk to a foodcourt, clinic, pharmacy, grocery shop, photocopy shop, photoshop, petrol station, hair cut and about 15 mins walk to a major shopping mall. This will be great as we are still looking for a car to purchase. The convenience will be a great help.

The children seems to be doing OK.

I am OK too. I have had 4 months to prepare to return to Malaysia, anyway.


I had a very teary departure at the farewell given by Mary and then again when we left her home to head towards the Airport. It was very sad to leave such a good friend and all the good friends I had in Thailand.

I shall be back.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Arrived Safely

See the excitement of returning home.... written all over the face

I have arrived safety in Malaysia 12am early morning today.

We are all doing well, slowly trying to settle back to our home country. We hope the transition will not be too hard for all of us, especially the children. Please pray for us.

I have limited internet access, so, I might not be able to blog as much as I like.

I am home.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Tomorrow is the Day

My family and I are leaving Bangkok tomorrow.

It feels weird having a countdown... 2 more days... 1 more day... to leave.

Rather than thinking about all the things I will miss, I want to Thank God for all the things and people I have enjoyed throughout my stay in Thailand.

God has blessed me with so many good friends here.... and you are one of them.

One more day and I am leaving.....
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Sunday, February 22, 2009

Will You Miss ....?

During the farewell dinner hosted by Sophia and Bernard tonight, she asked Ethaniel the following questions....

Sophia: Are you going to miss Josh?

Ethaniel: No.

Sophia: Why?

Ethaniel: Because he is going to visit me.

Me: If you miss him is it because you enjoy his PSP games?

Ethaniel: Noooooo! He is my best friend.


Mummy was embarrassed to even have suggested that this 7+ years old boy had ulterior motives.

So shameful.

Just because we adult sometimes have not-so-innocent motives, doesn't mean this little boy does too. Honestly, he is a very good, loyal, give-and-take and kind friend. I would like to have a friend like him.

I should have more faith in this little boy of mine.

Sorry, Ethaniel.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

PADI Certified Young Man!

So handsome my son

He passed it! He passed it! Phew!

He didn't do much of reading of his manual and I was worried how he would fare at his exams. I told him that if he failed, he will have to pay the THB12,200 himself! He was nervous, I tell ya.

I was so glad and really proud of him. He passed and the instructor said that he is a confident diver. Of course lah! My son. I was almost pissing in my pants, earlier.

I think scuba diving is a very special experience and he is very fortunate to be able to experience that at a young age. I hope he will become a serious diver because it gives him many opportunities to see the beauty of God's creation. Who knows he might even pick up a career related to scuba diving.

Well done, Joel! I am proud of you. My son.

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Scuba Diving for Joel

Scuba diving is one of the sport which Joel wanted to pick up, so, we took him to Koh Tao for a scuba diving course. We signed up for this course since May 08 but has not managed to go there. Now that we are leaving, we have no choice but to quickly make a trip and we did.

We took a scuba diving course with Easy Divers which we purchased at Queen Sirikit. The special price was THB12,200 for PADI certification inclusive of food, accommodation, transport, ferry ride, manual and equipments. Its much cheaper than Malaysia.

I must admit that it has been an adventurous trip.. coming here, that is.

Firstly, when we took the bus, it was overbooked so we were transported via van to the main bus terminal instead of going with the Seatran bus. It was a little confusing but we got a better bus at the main terminal. Very comfortable too.

We arrived in the middle of nowhere at 4.30am in Chumpon. All of us was blur and eventually after making calls to the diving Company, they pulled a few strings and we had a song taew picking us up at about 5.45am to the Seatran jetty. It was stressful and adventurous all at the same time.

The Seatran boat was large and comfortable. The children loved it! Joel, Ethaniel and Josh. So excited!!!

Josh joined us for this trip because he had school holidays. I know it was brave of me to invite him along but since we are leaving Bangkok, I thought it would be nice for Ethaniel and Josh to play together. I was just thinking to myself.... If anything were to happen to him, his Daddy will hunt me down!

Its really enjoyable seeing both of them playing sand, water, swimming and some more sand and water. They actually go to the beach at least 3 times a day. I know, because I have to rinse their swimming trunks that many times a day!

While these two little boys are enjoying themselves at the beach, Joel is having an awesome time scuba diving.

1st Farewell

Our 1st farewell was given by my Hubby's ex-colleague on 7 Feb 09.

The first time we went to their home was when his wife gave birth to twins. They are now almost 2 years old. So cute little girls.

It was a very nice time of catching up, the children played together, we had some delicious Thai food. Such warm and nice Burmese people.

We promise to meet again when they visit Malaysia.

So, see you soon!

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Monday, February 16, 2009

It's a Miracle!!

Its a miracle!

Hubby just received his Offer Letter!!!! He has a job!!!


Woo hoo!

Moo hoo!

So, looks like I can stop eating porridge with salted eggs everyday!

Eventhough the job that we initially had wanted were based in Bangkok but we believe that God has a plan for us to return to Malaysia. So, we are very glad to be going home to a job whilst I hear bad news everyday of Companies closing down.

I would like to Thank You to all of my families, friends, fellow bloggers and all of you out there who have been praying for us.

Thank you for all your kind wishes, caring notes and comments.

Things has been tough but I can see the light at the end of the tunnel and its not a train.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Palong Website

Those of you who have been reading about my Mission Trips to the Palong Village, North of Thailand. There is now opportunities for you to help these people.

You might or might not be able to go there but there are few things you can do... One, is to pray and two, you can contribute financially to support the children in the hostel who has to go to school - school supplies, uniforms, daily food and lodging. Among other things.

I have promised Pastor Suriya the pastor-in-charge of the Hostel to create a simple website. They need outsider help. Please do visit the simple blog which I have created for them. The information inside is useful to inform others of their needs and other stuffs about them.

Eventhough I am leaving by end February 2009 to return to Malaysia, I have agreed to help them update the blog from wherever I am.

Its really funny how the little talent that I have regards to the computer, God has multiplied it. I have no formal IT training but I love playing around with the computer. So, my blogging hasn't wasted time. It is helping others. I hope that God will help the Palong people.

So, please visit the website and if you would like to visit their village or make contribution, there are details included.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

How Simple Things Can Be So Great!

Since we moved out of our house, we have been staying with Mary in the middle of Bangkok city. Just outside her Soi there are heaps of food stalls and the food is ridiculously cheap.

We eat a bowl of noodles "Lad na" for THB25 and a plate of fried vegetables is THB30. This will normally cost THB90-THB120 in a restaurant. My goodness!

So, this afternoon we ate there. Ethaniel and I. He had his favorite "Lad Na" which is similar to "yin yong" in Malaysia or "Hor fun" in Hong Kong. Of course to make his meal complete we had his favorite drink Oishi Black Tea.

I really enjoyed his company because he was just smiling away... saying that he loved his food so much... It was so delicious.... He could have it for the rest of his life.... He can eat it for breakfast and lunch...

"Thank you, Mummy for taking me out for lunch"

The smile on his face was priceless. His joy and contentment was so contagious that by just looking at him, I am filled with joy.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Great Job!

The Movers sent 5 packers and a Supervisor on the first day and at the end of the 2nd day there were 10 personnel loading and packing everything. They did their job as if they were born packers. Amazing!

The reason we engaged Allied Pickford was because we knew Neil from Bangkok Soccer League when we initially came and then they started homeschooling their children. So, we got together more often even when my children stopped going for the soccer training.

I am glad I engaged their services. They did well.

The children having a photo shot with the Allied Pickfords banner

The children really enjoyed fooling around ... even a hide-and-seek game

My goodness! How high....

The "little house" beside the house

The packing took 2 full days. The first day they ended at 4.30pm and the 2nd day they finished at 6pm. We initially estimated our goods at 20 ft container but after all the packing, it exceeded. So, we decided to get a 40 ft container.

The goods will take 3 weeks to reach Malaysia inclusive of paper work, clearance and etc.

I hope the unpacking and all will be as good as this. I hope the Malaysian side will not disappoint us. The Thai packers had been excellent.

We are so thankful to God for such a smooth two day - 10 and 11 Feb.... After that, we have to leave the house and stay at our friend's home. Then, catching up with friends, bidding farewells, etc. We have already had our first few rounds of farewell lunch and dinner. After this, almost every lunch and dinner will be packed with farewell get-togethers. Can get quite fun and depressing all at the same time.

Sigh. Part and parcel of the transition process.

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Thursday, February 12, 2009

Tick... Tick...

I am in a phase where I am looking back... and then looking at the present. Where have I been in the last 3 years, where I am now and where I am going. Maybe its because I know that my time in Bangkok is ticking... ticking... ticking...

Does it happen to people when they get really old? Knowing their time on earth is ticking... ticking... ticking... Looking back to see what has been done and what else can be done.

I paused while writing this post and when I returned, I saw this message..

YOU"RE GETTING OLDER, LAH.........but more BEAUTIFUL!!!!......can't get the best of both worlds......

Someone obviously sneaked in that message. Who is that nosy busy body... You better own up!!! Now!


That's what happens when there are too many male in this home. I am outnumbered 3 to 1.

What did I tell you about me being outnumbered 3 to 1. We need some girls here!!!

See! Now I forgot what I originally wanted to post in this blog. The old thing is taking effect....

Never mind.

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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

How To Say Good bye?

How do you say goodbye to a house?

Kiss it?

Hug it?

Gives it a pat on the.... door? window? floor? gate? roof???

Write a "Thank You" note?

So, how do one say goodbye?

When we came here almost 3 years ago, we stayed at Royal Princess Hotel, Srinakarin for almost 3 long weeks. We expected to stay only for 1 week but there were delays of our goods. Not fun, I tell ya. It was lunch and dinner everyday at Seacon Square. After 3 weeks, I had nightmare of getting lost in Seacon Square Mall... I actually go there for a breather. How do you stay in a hotel room with 2 boys of 4+ and 9+ years old for 3 weeks? Who also incidentally had wiggles in their butts!

Eventually the goods arrived! Hallelujah!!!

The Landlord installed 2 air-conds and the rest of the stuffs we either brought it from Malaysia or purchased it ourselves. The house was a brand new bungalow in a brand new Mooban. We were the first few who came to stay. The place was creepily quiet at nite and blasting loud during the daytime due to constructions and renovations.

Fast forward.

1 year ...

2 years ...

and 10 months...

Time to go... to leave....

Goodbye P Sa, my back neighbor. Extremely friendly and nice neighbor.

Goodbye Air Stewardess from Thaiaways, my front neighbor. Who gives sweets to my sons.

Goodbye weird-bachelor-with-messy-house-who-brings-ridiculously-young-girls-home. Whom I discovered is a doctor. I blogged about him a few months ago. Read it here.

Goodbye K Anna who is retired. I was her neighbor cum counsellor.

Goodbye K Tim & K Ja who are International School teachers. Great sense of humor and makes me laugh. Their children are georgeous!!!

Goodbye Next-Door-Neighbor-Who-Is-Never-At-Home. Thanks for being such a peaceful neighbor.

*heavy heart*

*sad eyes*

*caressing the door knob*

Good bye.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The Moving Day

Its finally here.... The Moving Day.

We are finally having our things all packed up. Put into the box, wrapped, sealed and shipped. I make it sound like hard work but its really a supervisory job. I am just worried that I accidentally pack something I need for the next 1 month. That's my only concern.

Its going to be 2 days of packing. Yes, I know. There's heaps of things. I brought my whole house here 3 years ago and now I am taking my whole house back. I am leaving somethings behind, giving it to my friends. But the rest is coming with me!

Its going to be an interesting day...

Team Work

I asked Joel & Ethaniel to hang the clothes.

This is how they accomplished it... Its was so funny, that I had to whip out my camera.

It was a very hot day.
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Sunday, February 8, 2009

Day 12 - More of Mae Fah Luang

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Day 12 - Some More of Mae Fah Luang

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Day 12 - Mae Fah Luang

To read Day 1 - Onward to Tak, Thailand,
Day 2 - On The Road Again .... Chiang Mai

Day 3: Palong Village
Day 4: Still in Palong Village

Day 5 - To the Next Village... Lahu at Phrao
Day 6: At Lahu Village, Phrao
Day 7: Gift Exchange, Turkey & Sweaters

Day 8 - Doi Inthanon

Day 9 - Sunrise at Doi Inthanon
Day 10 - On the way to Mae Sai

Mae Fah Luang in Doi Tung, North Thailand is the King's Mother's Project. Her palace is also there... Because she was in Switzerland for many years, she probably loved the swiss cottages so much that she built one for herself.

We took many photos there...

We went there around late morning and paid a fee of THB130 which allowed us go into the main flower cultivation and the King Mother’s Palace.

The beautiful flowers was so amazingly magnificent. The creativity of the gardeners was so amazing in mixing the various different colors of flowers in a decoration of garden…. I felt that I was in the garden of Eden! I was amazed!

I could have just needed a cup of drink, a book and a lazy chair for me to sit there the whole day basking in the beauty of the creation of God.How could have evolution created such delicate, creative and colourful petals such as these? Indeed, God does love beautiful things. That is why He created me too.

There are all kinds of flowers of so many species. There are so many things to see that half a day was a hurry.

We stayed overnight in Mae Sai and during the night, we visited the Mae Sai night market. Its not as good as the day market. During the day, there were so many more stalls and the goods here are considerably cheaper than Bangkok, Chiang Mai or Chiang Rai.

After Mae Sai, we journeyed towards Phayao and then Phitsanulok and then Nakhon Nayok and then to home. The reason we went to those places were to break the journey. It was at least 13 hours if we go through to Bangkok. So, we broke the journey into 2-3 days.

Phew! At last I managed to finish the blog on this trip! Woohoo!

P.S. I will be posting more photos of Mae Fah Luang.

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Saturday, February 7, 2009

Day 11 - Golden Triangle

To read Day 1 - Onward to Tak, Thailand,
Day 2 - On The Road Again .... Chiang Mai

Day 3: Palong Village
Day 4: Still in Palong Village

Day 5 - To the Next Village... Lahu at Phrao
Day 6: At Lahu Village, Phrao
Day 7: Gift Exchange, Turkey & Sweaters

Day 8 - Doi Inthanon

Day 9 - Sunrise at Doi Inthanon
Day 10 - On the way to Mae Sai

We left early towards Golden Triangle and arrived there around lunch time.

Map showing the Golden Triangle

Many boats ferrying tourist

The children really enjoyed the boat ride... It was fast and exciting for these boys

Even the adults are enjoying themselves

The Golden Triangle is the meeting of 3 rivers, Laos, Burma and Thailand. It was interesting. We took a speed boat which fits 4 persons for about THB400. According to my Thai friend, we have been cheated. For that price we could have had a two hour ride to Laos. Instead we had a 15 mins towards one side of the river near to the Casino and then to the side of Laos for 1 hour of shopping. The shopping was lousy! It was a waste of time. The products was similar to Thai and nothing really interesting.

We prayed along the river, so that God will bless all these 3 countries.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Thai Food

Before I came to Thailand, I was a real Malaysian. I loved everything Malaysian. Especially food. Joel, my eldest boy he is an even bigger fan of food. A real connoisseur. Together, we enjoyed food immensely! He is the one who pushes me to do better at cooking. Praises me after a satisfied meal and hugs me when I cook his favorite dishes. I know I reached his heart when I cooked his favorite food. Ethaniel loves food too but not as much as Joel.

Indian food... love it!

Chinese food... love it!

Malay food... love it!

Japanese food... love it!

Italian food... love it!

Mexican food... love it!

Tex-Mex... love it!

Middle Eastern food... love it!

One thing about Malaysians or is it this family(?), we are so adaptable and exposed to so many types of food that, we can be thrown into any society and thrive. Its unfortunate that we are thriving here. My children and I, anyway. We have grown to love the Thai food like Tom Yum Gung (Prawn Tom Yum Soup), Kaeng Khiao wan - Khanom Chin (Green curry with Noodles) Som Tum Thai (Papaya Salad), BBQ chicken with sticky rice (how we love that!), pad thai (Fried Noodles) and many more!

Three years ago, before I arrived in Thailand, I totally disliked the Green Curry but now I have a serious addiction to it. Sigh. Where am I going to find a THB25 plate of Khanom Chin in Malaysia? Any idea?

I have gotta to go and learn some Thai recipes. Anyone out there... help?

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Be Courages, My Sons!

I drove out today at about 7.15pm to go out for dinner with the children. On the way out, I saw a young man and woman walking together. But it didn't look like a intimate man-hand-over-woman-shoulder walk. Instead, it was more like the man was trying to forcefully make the woman move forward by putting his arms around her shoulder and neck.

I didn't know what was happening.

It didn't look normal, to me.

My instinct tells me, that something is not right.

The road was very dark. So, I horned. A short but loud one. I stopped my car directly behind them and tailed them slowly. They didn't turn .

They kept walking.

I horned again. This time longer. I put on high beam and this time, a warning horn... short and a few times.

At last, he broke his grip over her shoulder and neck. She was free and started to scold him and moved away. He briefly stared at my car and walked away.

I explained to my sons what I did and why I did it.... We must help those who might be in trouble. Stand up for the underdogs. Protect the rights of the innocent. Jesus has given us many examples to live by and we are His followers. So, follow!

Be courageous my Sons! Never be indifferent.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Day 10 - On The Way To Mae Sai

To read Day 1 - Onward to Tak, Thailand,
Day 2 - On The Road Again .... Chiang Mai

Day 3: Palong Village
Day 4: Still in Palong Village

Day 5 - To the Next Village... Lahu at Phrao
Day 6: At Lahu Village, Phrao
Day 7: Gift Exchange, Turkey & Sweaters

Day 8 - Doi Inthanon

Day 9 - Sunrise at Doi Inthanon

I know I am a little slow on finishing the blog on my trip but thanks for bearing with me.... trying to fit the packing & blogging schedule in ;-)

Anyway, continuation..... Day 10...

We headed towards Mae Sai via Chiang Mai after lunch, it was going to be a long drive. At around 5.00pm we still have not reached our destination. So, we decided to stay overnight at a place we discovered on the way, The Charin Resort. It was a very pleasant surprise. Its about 1 hour from Chiang Rai.

They had a restaurant and a corner full of pastries and pies, baked by their own kitchen. The owner of the place spoke fluent English and was very friendly. We were so excited that we skipped dinner by eating their cheese cake, chicken pie, apple crumble and brownie. It was absolutely delicious that we ate it again for dessert at breakfast.

Its cute that they have a mini zoo with mostly birds. The peacock spread his beautiful flowers to show off and it was so beautiful.

The accommodation

The parrot

Beautiful peacock

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Monday, February 2, 2009

Clearing Stuffs

You know, sorting things out is a real tough job. There has not been many occasions in my life whereby I have to do such major sorting.

I have moved house once after I was married, then relocation to Bangkok, 3 years ago. So, I didn't really have that many opportunities to get rid of my junks, sort out my things, I mean.

This time round, I just want to make sure those XS sizes which I used to own will go to someone who will benefit it. Any of you out there like me? Keeping those clothes, hoping that eventually you will fit into them.... like after this crash diet?

After awhile, I kinda got the idea that I wasn't going to get into them. You know, the denial stage over and facing reality.

Its interesting what I find beneath those heaps.... Will let you know when I get the time.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

A "Good Bye" Email

I sent the following email to friends whom I met in Thailand, just to let them know that I am leaving soon. A simple message but truly from my heart....


Dear Friends,

The last few months has been a difficult & uncertain time in our life. Some or most of you already know that Ivan, my husband was retrenched early Nov 08. Ever since then he has been looking for a job here in Bangkok but nothing seems concrete. So, the time has come for us to move on and return to our home country, Malaysia. We are not sure what the future holds but we trust God that when we give Him our every need, He will take care of us.

If given the opportunity, we would have loved to stay... We have grown to love this neighbor country, Thailand, the land of smiles immensely. The food! The food!!! We would miss the tom yum gung, green curry, som tam, pad ka paw, bbq chicken with sticky rice and most of all, the fresh fruits which can be purchased cheaply at the market. Being able to eat a meal for THB15. Lol... Impossible in Malaysia.

We would love to meet up and catch up before we leave but if it be so unfortunate that we missed the opportunity and did not manage to say proper good byes, we want you to know that we see our life in Thailand like a huge jigsaw puzzle which God has given to us and you/your family are that one piece, regardless of how large or small the piece is, which perfected the picture.

Our hearts are heavy, having to part ways. As we have discovered, a place is just a place but its the company that makes it fun! We have been so blessed with this brief encounter with you in this past 3 years. Our stay here has been so memorable, adventurous, sweet, exciting because of you.... There is a reason why God has allowed our path to cross, for whatever reason, our life in Thailand have been enriched and we hope that we also have been a blessing to you/your family. A small piece of jigsaw puzzle in the journey of your life, as well.

We would like to wish you all of God's blessing, love, grace and mercy to follow you all the days of your life.

Let's not forget to keep in touch.... Please visit my blog www.psalmone21.blogspot, as I continue the next phase of the Journey of My Life.

Please call on us when you visit Malaysia for work or holiday, we would love to catch up!