Jan Leow's Press Blog

Work life balance good and bad

The New Year started with a bang from all those grand fireworks display. Being near to two shopping malls I got to see all the slam bang actions from 1-Utama and Ikano/Curve. That was like 3 weeks ago since my last blog. Well I was kinda busy. During the New Year, I made a trip up to Cameron Highlands with my parents and less than a week later I was off to Bali to attend a cousin’s wedding. Two travel destinations in so short a time sounds good you would think. But there is such a thing as travel fatigue. Too much of a good thing can actually be a tiring affair.

It was still monsoon when we travel for both the trips, it was all wet, wet, wet! It rained like as though somebody open up the heaven’s dam and let the river flow unceasingly. It was pouring like cats and dogs on my last day in Cameron Highlands that there was nothing much we could do. Though we still managed to go to a few place and savoured many tasty scones and found a good and cheap place too!

While in Bali we were fortunate that it rained heavily mainly in the evenings. We still managed to travel to several destinations like Kuta, Ubud and Sukawati. It was mostly just markets and my family members just shop, shop, shop, especially Lena did the most shopping for souvenirs. The zeros in the Rupiah made it difficult to imagine the value of the goods, but trust Lindy to write down a quick conversion chart on a piece of paper for quick easy reference. In way was much better and faster than using a calculator to check the value being bargained for.

The wedding reception event was really grand. The groom must be pretty well off as our accommodation was fully paid up. All we need to do was to get our Air Asia booking and get ourselves there! The wedding reception was held on a villa by the sea side. Very romantic and very scenic too! The sky was rather ominous and could have break out any time, though fortunately it poured only after midnight when the open air buffet style dinner was concluded. Those that were caught in it were those happy hour people who were wet anyway when they were thrown into the swimming pool!

My bro-in-law wanted some nice beautiful shot of the wedding reception to bolster up his wedding reception website, so I had to lug over several set of lens, a powerful flash and many rechargeable AA batteries for the flash and several CF cards. What really was heavy was the lens! Travelling around sight-seeing with a heavy bag was no joke. At the end of the day my hands and shoulders were really tired carrying them around and snapping photos here and there. It was a chance to practice some street and travel photography too. Unfortunately I didn’t get much chance to capture any landscape photography being mostly stuck in markets. Oh, well, street travel photography would just be fine.

The whole trip generally went very well except for the return journey. We were supposed to be booked for the 6.30pm departure flight but Air Asia saw it fit to cancel the flight on the excuse of technical problem. Uncle Michael figured that Air Asia tried to save cost because both the seats were not full. By canceling the penultimate flight and push all the passengers to the last flight Air Asia could save a bundle from fuel cost. It seems he has experience it several times where the penultimate flight seem to get canceled because of light booking. Could be too. So next time when we are going to do a booking we should not book the penultimate flight. Either take the last flight or the third last flight.

Much to our unfortunate circumstances we have to wait at the airport for nearly six hours to take the 9.30pm departure flight back to good old Kuala Lumpur. By the time we arrived at LCCT it was pass midnight. Fortunately Kenny and my brother Jon were able to pick all of us up. For those who use taxi, they definitely would get the 50% additional surcharge to their taxi fare because it was pass midnight. Sheesh…! Air Asia. No choice ler… want cheap airfare then have to forego comfort lor. If booked a flight using MAS the ticket cost would have been doubled. Oh well.

As usual trust Lindy to find out that we could claim against Air Asia for our “suffering”. If our flight became delayed more than two hours we could claim a voucher of RM200 to be redeemed against our next flight ticket. Unfortunately the burden of proof is laid on the consumer, very much like the legal system in Malaysia where a suspect is guilty until proven innocent, so too was Air Asia where they absolve all responsibility of their shortcomings and it is up to us to lay down the proof by showing our documentary evidence to claim against them. Sigh. Most of us has thrown or misplaced the boarding slip which was the proof needed. That’s why lah, that’s how Air Asia make money mah. That’s why MAS scratching their head wondering how Air Asia can remain profitable despite the low cost ticket. And if you have to catch a connecting flight not belonging to Air Asia, so sorry lah, not their problem. I guess you pay for what you get.

Anyway, Chinese New Year is just a few more days away. Lena was trying to arrange a family reunion dinner. All the restaurants are jam pack on their booking, but Lena did managed to get a booking at Overseas Restaurant Jalan Imbi. For the long stretch we were wondering where we could go for any break. But like usual lah, too much holiday travel can make one “jelat”. Will have to wait and see.

Now business rather slow, and manufacturer goods quality is not up to par leading to very frustrating complaints that I have to deal with. Sigh. Life’s like that. Up and down. Good and bad. Wish I can just throw all the bad stuff all away and do something that I truly like. Oh well. It pays the bills and this web site too. Just have to wait for a miracle as I keep soldering on. Haven’t done anything much about those MLM though Usana looks kinda promising. Looks much better than Amway. Really need a change in work lifestyle.

A lot of money stuck here and there. Hope to recover something more. Oh well.

Wishing anybody reading this blog a Happy and Prosperous Chinese New Year!

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