Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Of Pots And Kettles

The Pot Calling The Kettle Black

I have been in service for more than thirty years, twenty-three of which is in the teaching profession. I have seen many types of people with many different characteristics and I have definitely gone through many emotional turmoils. Nevertheless, to be fair, I have also undergone my share of wonderful and gratifying experiences.

I have also had the experience of working for several superiors. I am happy to say that a few of them have made my work as a teacher very enjoyable in which case, time just flew without me even noticing. However, there are some superiors who have made my working experience very distasteful and have made me think about whether I am in the right profession or not, more than once.

To make things worse, there are those who do not practise what they preach. They tell their subordinates to do one thing while they do something else. In some cases they keep telling you to give all you can to the profession with verbal hints of gratification, when in fact the rewards go to those less deserving. Some people can just display the little that they do and get instant gratification, while you work your hide to the bone, and you get just that; bone!!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Well Done, Tarsians!!!

Girl Power!

With a sigh of relief, I exhaled, as the Form Six State Level Sports Carnival came to an ultimate close at 4.30 p.m. on the 23rd of October! I can finally let my guard down and let my shoulders droop a little after weeks of hardwork, struggling to see the success of this event.

This event actually started off in September when our school was unceremoniously chosen to be the host for the District level of this sports carnival. Even though there are only three schools with form six in the district of Tampin, organising the event was an Herculian task for some one as green to this scene as myself. Unashamedly, I have my colleagues to thank for helping me run the programme and making sure that it went along smoothly!

After the district level, we started preparing for the state level. The respective teachers who were assigned to train the students did their jobs well, except for one, unfortunately. I, on the other, hand took it upon myself to make sure that the students were assured of their pocket money, food during the competition and transport to the venue.

To tell you the truth, I was just as happy to have managed to get my students to the venue to take part in the competition and assuring them of their food and drinks after a tiring day out. But, when two of our teams won and became the victor in two games, it was the icing on the cake for me! And, from the bottom of my heart, I thank you all!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Teachers' Club Annual do

Well, it's that time of the year again folks! The SMK Tuanku Abdul Rahman's Teachers' Club committee members will be busy organising it's annual do, which will either be dinner or lunch. As the Chairperson of the club, I am happy to say that, my committee and I have managed to organise many activities all throughout the year. Starting from our participation during the school's sports day right up to this year's Teachers' Day celebrations.

Undoubtedly, with all the activities held earlier this year, one can only expect that a substantial amount of money has been used from the club's coffers. And now with the biggest event of the year looming in the horizon, the main thing on every one's mind is, do we have enough money to pull this thing through. We initially had illusions of grandeur of having our annual do at a hotel! But as the illusions turned to reality, the venue started to get more realistic starting with the local golf resort, then the local b-and-b and finally the school hall!

Well, the school hall it is! Unless of course every single teacher agrees to add another RM10 to enable us to have the do at a hotel! As of 1.00 p.m. no one has agreed to that additional fee. The main thing is, we have fun, even if it is in the school hall!

Friday, October 8, 2010

A Novel Novel

After months of waiting for the paperback version of Dan Brown's The Lost Symbol, it finally made its debut in bookstores last month. Based on the reviews made on it and also the fact that it topped the Malaysian's (and worldwide) best seller's list for weeks, my expectations were running high and I have to say that I was not disappointed.

I take my hat off to Dan Brown for being able to weave a story out of things that are factual into a wonderful work of fiction. I can only imagine the work and effort Dan Brown must have put into connecting the facts and fiction together to make the whole story seem so convincing and believable. On top of all that, he also created symbols and cryptic notes, which in itself must have required even more research, to add an aura of enigma to the story.

I for one, enjoyed reading the novel. I can easily differentiate between a book that I like and one that I love. A book that I like would take me one day to complete. On the other hand, one that I love would take me at least a week to finish, because I just don't want the story to end. Even though The Lost Symbol is a story that I like, I feel it is nowhere nearly as interesting compared to The Da Vincci Code, which I love!

Potatoes, Beans and Chicken

Strange Combination

I am a first-class food lover and has undergone many gastronomic endeavours. I have had many different types of food from all parts of the world, be they from my own resourcefulness of trying recipes from different countries or during my study in the UK and travel in France. I have seen many different types of food combined with other types of food, some of which may not have seemed palatable at first glance but worked deliciously well once savoured.

However, not all food go hand in hand with each other as I have unpleasantly experienced during my stay at a local hotel recently. I was really looking forward to the breakfast buffet spread after missing supper the night before. As usual, during stays like this, I always prefer to have baked beans, mashed potatoes (or potato wedges) with sausages for breakfast if only to avoid from the mundane fare that we Malaysians usually have in the morning.

Well, I did have mashed potatoes; I did have baked beans; but there were no sausages in sight even after circling the buffet table vainly twice! When I asked the waitress what would go well with the mashed potatoes and beans, she happily pointed to the Chicken Rendang, which incidentally was for the Nasi Lemak. I cringed at her suggestion that a local dish could possibly marry well with something with a western flavour! I think not dear waitress! I mean, this is not a marriage between a local and a foreigner which would be happily united with the saying 'I do'. For this combination of food, I am happy to say 'I don't!'.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Selesa Beach Resort is so Selesa

A Relaxing Place to Relax

This evening I just returned from a two-day meeting at Selesa Beach Resort in Port Dickson. Even though in essence it is called a meeting, to me however, is actually a brief vacation from the mundane routine that I go through every monotonous day. As the name of the Resort suggests, it is indeed a relaxing (selesa) place for an individual to wind down. Even better the stay there was free.

Actually, I have attended many meetings at this venue for the past ten years or so, ever since this resort was known as Regency Hotel until it was taken over by a new management a few years ago who decided to call it by its present name. And I have never had any complaints! One thing that I can applaud this resort is it is quite friendly. On a few occassions I reached the resort earlier than the check in time, usually after a long, hot two-hour drive. And I have always been pleasantly received by the staff at the reception counter who checked me in even though I had arrived at 12.50 p.m. By the way, the check in time is 2.00 p.m.

Unfortunately meetings conducted are usually long and time consuming and they do not leave the participants much time to go to the beach for a swim or a stroll. However, just catching a glimpse of the calm azure sea is usually enough to bring cheer and relaxation after long sessions of meetings. I'm hoping to attend more meetings at Selesa Beach Resort because it is "selesa"!