Sunday, April 22, 2007


Getting a trained foreign domestic help through an agency is costly. Some people opt for individual agent's service, and usually end up with untrained helpers. Training them in their daily tasks can be quite an effort. One of the main problems is communication, I think. I don't intend to make fun of anyone, but these are real incidents experienced by people I know :-)

Case 1 - Tuan balik dari kedai, hands Bibik some shopping bags :-
"Bibik, simpan semua barang ni di tempatnya ya"
"Baik Tuan"
Later, Tuan takes out a torchlight, intending to replace its weak batteries.
"Bibik, ambilkan bateri!"
"*blur* Bateri tu apa Tuan?"
"Itu, yang bulat panjang-panjang, tersusun dalam plastik"
"Oh ya, ada, sebentar ya"
In a while, Bibik hands to Tuan a cold package.
"Ini baterinya Tuan"
It's a packet of chicken frankfurters.... hehehe

Case 2 - pagi :-
"Bibik, rendam kain ni dalam mesin"
"Baik Puan"
Bibik loads the dirty laundry into the washing machine.
Petang, Puan balik dari kedai :-
"Bibik, rendam ayam ni dalam besen"
"Baik Puan"
Bibik completes the task. Much later :-
"Bibik, mana ayamnya?"
"Itu Puan, udah direndam"
"AstaghafiruLlah.... besen la, bukan mesin!"

Case 3 - Puan boils some water on the gas stove. Puan goes to the livingroom.
Later, from the livingroom :-
"Bibik, kalau air sudah mendidih, matikan apinya ya?"
"Baik Puan"
A little later, from the livingroom, Puan can smell gas from the stove. Puan goes to the kitchen, yep, the smell is very strong. The knob on the stove still indicated 'on', but the fire is out.
"Bibik, macamana kamu matikan api ni?"
"Saya hembus kuat-kuat Puan"

Tulah Tuan/Puan, cakap mesti terang hehehe. Tak boleh expect depa boleh faham terus apa yang kita cakap. Mungkin depa susah nak faham dialek kita. Ataupun our lifestyle is so much different from theirs, that they cannot imagine how else to complete the task. Be nice, and be very, very patient :-)

Hef e nais wiken efribodi!

Friday, April 20, 2007


Sometimes we are just too nice to people we call friends, kan? We don't wanna say anything to hurt their feelings, even though they deserve it, or at least we are entitled to air our grievances. On one hand, this is good 'coz it'll make people be nicer to each other and it will preserve friendships. On the other hand, sendiri sakit hati hehehe :-)

Take for example, my colleague Che Bi. Last week she ordered some pastries for a tea that she hosted. Here's a pic of some of the pastries :-

Looks nice, huh? Fruit tartlet, egg tart, eclair, mini muffin. Well, pics can lie, about the only good one there is the slice of orange. The custard in the fruit tartlet is the same as in the eclair, it looks and taste mentah, like tepung kastad campur air gula saja. Eclair? What eclair, pastry yang keras kedengkang tu? The egg tart pulak, almost a third of the order had half-baked egg custard, cayor meleleh, definitely a salmonella risk. The mini muffin lak was actually kek coklat kukus, I dunno about you but my muffins are baked, not kukus-ed. And believe it or not, we actually found some hair in the tarts. I refuse to think about where those hair came from, ugh!

My colleague was understandably upset. Initially she wanted to order the stuff from a real bakery, but this friend who is supposedly 'comolot' (what an ugly expression!) with a well-known female chef, told my colleague that she could get the chef to make the pastries, ala-ala jual nama gitu. Turns out, she took leave from work that day, and (we think) did it herself. Tu lah agaknya jadi sub-standard sangat *hmmph*.

So did my colleague complain about it? Noooo.... "taknaklah, nanti dia kecik hati". Adehhh.... you're being too nice la Che Bi, and it's not helping your friend either when she doesn't get any feedback. Nasib baik la kerajaan nak pertimbang naikkan gaji kakitangan awam. Tak payah la lagi ada half-baked (literally!) usahawan yang tak tido malam sebab carik duit buat keje part-time macam ni! Bila tak cukup tido, mulalah kepala weng kat ofis.

Errr... tak cukup tido sebab blogging, dimaafkan hehehe...

Meanwhile, the pastries should've been like these :-

Me, I ate quite a few slices of oranges, sweet n juicy, and definitely no hairs on 'em!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007


And so today is her 56th birthday.

Dedicated to SH :

Farewell Farewell
You won't recognize me
But please forget me not
In your memories, your subconscious mind
or your nightmares
You are the face I recognize
But our way is no longer together
So say farewell
And I will never forget you

(poem by Maria Sudibyo)

I have never, ever heard of any previously retiring heads of departments who worked so hard at trying to evade her retirement event, one that is organized by her staff in honour (ye ke?) of her long service. And yet you managed to do so, by worming your way at the last minute into an official overseas group trip on which your services were never needed in the first place. WTF???

Despite all the shoddy treatments, backstabbing, badmouthing, patronizing, cronyism, undermining etc that you've inflicted on most of us all these years (of course there were some good points too), we still took the effort to honour you as our superior.

A few thousand RM may not mean much to you, but do you know that it took us, your lowly staff, more than a year to collect that much money from our monthly contribution to the department 'kebajikan' fund, and for which we forgo last year's Family Day, just so that we could save the money to hold a proper farewell dinner in a nice hotel just for you? You don't care, do you?

There's no way we could have cancelled the dinner and get a full refund, so the event had to go on, f*cked as it was (nasib baik makan sedap, even though some of the lower level staff didn't find the chinese dinner menu very appetizing, lidah cuma biasa ngan sambal belacan).

After all these years working under you, we still can't figure out how your mind works.

I'd love to say 'good riddance', but that would be too cruel.