Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Hey You, Up There...

It would have been your 57th birthday, Papa. Mama went to your grave in the morning and texted me afterward. I didn't do anything but composing this post for you tonight, with not enough tears in my eyes. I didn't write anything last year, I am sure you would understand. It was still painful and it will still be like that until we meet again. I miss you.

Oh, with all that I've done wrong I must have done something right
To deserve your love every morning and butterfly kisses
I couldn't ask God for more, man, this is what love is

Butterfly Kisses, Bob Carlisle

Monday, July 27, 2009

Rant of the Week

I should've used a better judgment yesterday when my lazy body lulled my mind for a nap. I never take a so-called power nap--a few precious minutes and one will rise up energetically--it is always a long two-three hours one.

I woke up too early by my Sunday standard for a first showing of Harry Potter at 10:15 AM with the girls. After the nap, there was a momentous decision to go to the last Mass of the day or to replenish food supply. The end of Mass and the closing time of Trader Joe's are sadly congruent. Since I don't have the magical ability to disapparate right after communion, TJ's righteously won. And then the devil took my soul.

In a self I-told-you-so moment, I stayed awake till maybe 5:30 in the morning today. It successfully threw my plan to start the week with a bang at gym. I woke up 10 minutes past 11, just enough time to take a shower, wash and dry my hair (no flat ironing today), and lunch.

It's been closer to four months since I requested and underwent an alternative working hours. At first it worked perfectly fine, judging with the many progress I made over the first two months. The potency of the arrangement, however, is dimmer by the day, as machines are kept occupied until 7 at night. Leaving yours truly to many wasted productive hours spent on blogging, browsing the world wide web, and tending to fax machine(more on this later). Of course, those times are spent after gloriously finishing all the mundane clerical type of tasks. It seems that a graveyard shift will be more effective at this phase, research-wise.

As I finished sending out sample, I received an email from the International Students Service at school explaining the difficulty of faxing an important document to my company's fax machine. This document, I must note, has been gracefully and promptly finished on my request last week, a very good job, indeed. I gave the person another fax number as the hour ticks to 5 PM Texas time. She emailed me to let me know that this time the fax went through. She also asked to let her know if I successfully retrieved it. However, the fax line on our end didn't agree with the arrangement, prompting an error of end of job. I spent 20 minutes on the hotline to fix this problem to no avail. Apparently, the IT people had a problem with their phone line. Whoever it is that Murhpy guy. I salute you. I probably will find my luck to a copy a book written by Nick T. Spark, not to be confused with Nicholas Sparks.

Definitely not a good start of the week.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Some Updates

Too many backlogs. I don't think I can provide good accounts on them. I am not really keen with writing when I have no decent pictures to accompany the post. Hey, I really need to get a camera!

Here is a brief summary for you, that is if you can handle the annoyance of too many parenthesized words and exclamation.

Sunday, June 28th
I went to SF for Gay Pride Parade and hunting French macaron. I also went to some little boutiques along the way. I went with BART in order to be able to stroll downtown SF without having to find where to park and to avoid driving on those scary hills.

The three French macaron places in the Hayes Valley were practically next to each other, they are Paullete, La Boulange, and Miette. I decided I am not a fan of macarons aside from the pricey nature. I cannot tell the difference of the macarons among the three places. Here is probably a better review.

As for the parade, I was expecting something really vulgar coming my way. Instead, it was pretty decent, just a bunch of happy people. So, no useful review from my part again.

July 2nd-5th
The good people of WKICU asked me to come along on their 4th of July long weekend camping trip. We, the five adults and the 2 under 5-year-olds, stayed at a two-bedroom timeshare in Angels Camp on the first night before proceeding with some camping at New Melones Lake.

We spent our days visiting the the little towns and state parks around the areas. The weather in this central valley region was more than 10 degrees higher than the Bay Area weather we are accustomed to, not to mention that our camping ground could've used more shady trees. Nights were spent playing cards, eating corns, gossiping, etc.

We visited in no chronological order:
  • San Andreas (Calaveras County Museum, was a jail and still a function courthouse, took some crazy pictures here too! Oh, and guest what, one episode of Little House on the Praire was shoot in here. That's quite a long ride from their Simi Valley location.)
  • Columbia State Park (for some Gold Rush experience!)
  • Railtown State Park in Jamestown (for satisfying the inner Thomas and we managed to slip in some wine tasting too!)
  • Big Trees State Park (for some giant redwoods, I mean giant!)
  • California Cavern (to cross one item from the list of things I've never been to, a cave is one of them!)

Overall, it was a long weekend time well spent (and cheap too!)

Monday, July 20, 2009

First Published Non-Semiconductor Related Work, LOL!

A little summary on Indonesian Catholic community around Bay Area I wrote for St. Justin's, Santa Clara. The church is where we celebrate second Sunday Masses in Bahasa Indonesia.


Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Briarwood Apartments College Station Review

As posted on July 14th, 2009, on

The apartment unit that I and my two other roommates lived in at Briarwood was great. It was very clean and the carpet was spotless. The maintenance people were reliable so that we never have problems with AC, cable and internet, water leaks, etc. The neighbors were relatively quite, even on the weekend. Also, we always had ample parking space for our second car.

The problems--or should I say nightmares--we had were always with the management, upper and staff levels alike.

1. They went out of their way to change legal document
A few weeks after we moved in June 2008, we received a notice that we still owed them a few hundred dollars for moving in which need to be paid BTOB the next day. We found out that one of their office people managed to change a date on an original paper we all signed for moving in (not a contract, but still it is illegal) to show us that we had money due. That matters got resolved, though, but not until we threatened to bring it to school attorney.

2. They were not consistent on their policy towards money, i.e., be prepared to fight or pay.
Still, toward the end of the contract, my two roommates wanted to stay for convenience, as they are going to graduate soon. My roommates inquired about the money they had to pay in order to move to a 2-bedroom unit. There was a complication since we were staying at a 3-bedroom unit and we had paid that half month rent in advance when we signed the contract for the 3-bedroom. They kept changing their answer day-to-day. But no matter what the answer was, it would cost my roommates a fortune to stay. After a lot of “fightings” with the office people (manager kept leaving office hour right on the dot at 4 PM), my roommates decided to not renewing the contract. FYI, by this time, Briarwood was under yet another new management. But they still treat the tenants like bottom feeders. They claimed that my roommates were not granted renewal because my roommates were one step away from committing violence.

3. They, in short, are hustlers
My roommates had final statement after they moved out to the tune of yet another couple hundred dollars, for paintings, cleaning, and changing drip pans. Not so funny thing is one of my roommate had changed the drip pans (she lost the receipt though, but she still had the fifth of the drip plan set that was not used). My roommate went to dispute the charge about the drip plan with the office, they showed her a picture of a dirty cook stove/oven. My roommate was in disbelief and told them she personally cleaned that cook stove/ oven. Also, they refused to tell here when the picture was taken--it can be easily seen from the picture property as it was taken from a digital camera. Personally, we believe they are hustlers, since they only charged 200 something dollars for painting the whole apartment--it probably cost them more than that. They just wanted to have these easy 200 dollars from us and to get back to us from what happened at point # 2 above.

We are bringing these matters to the College Station’s Better Business Bureau and Texas A&M’s Off-Campus Housing office. We will let everyone know the progress of the “case.” In the mean time, caveat emptor for future renters, you should really think about moving in unless you have unlimited amount of money and willing to part from it. We are mostly students here. In my roommates and I case, we are international graduate students. So that might be why we got hustled in the first place.

Former Tenant, June-August 2008, # 383

Channeling My Inner Serena Williams

We were playing tennis at an officer picnic for WKICU sometime in June. I teamed up with the president. We obviously won.

I am thinking I need to start playing tennis again. I am entertaining an idea of an all-girl tennis match at my apartment complex on one of the weekend days followed by bbq/picnic and hot-tubbing. Hmm...

Monday, July 13, 2009

A Little Vain

you were hottt
in the purple dress
i demand a clearer pic

iya hot as in kepanasan, tan banget,

iya darker ya?
but it created a gorgeous backdrop for that jewel tone of the dress

:D thank you thank you you made my day
You did look thinner, and your complexion is clearer, what did you do?
Ah, it's only because I told you I've lost some pounds
As for the face, I don't know, it's probably the make up, LOL.

Aw, you all are so pretty. Green, brown...[he was referring to my friend's dress and my skirt and top ensemble]
Us: Thank you.
Did you straightened your hair?
Oh, you look so pretty...
[to her sister-in-law's girlfriend] Doesn't she?
Thank you..
Did you change your hair style?
Oh, you look good!
Thank you, I just straightened it.
Yeah..*nodding in approval*

Sunday, July 12, 2009


(Alternative) Examination of conscience for the act of contrition.

On one's relationship with:

  • God

  • Those nearest

  • Everyone else

  • God's other creatures

  • Oneself

In which I must conclude by borrowing the words of the Coldplay folks, I know Saint Peter won't call my name.


Thursday, July 09, 2009

Black Hole/Mothership

13:33 -- Hi! (the usual start of text message ritual, no reply from moi)

17:54 -- The Governor want to see you...(referring to his post on the workout blog, still no reply from moi)

20:58 -- Are you ok? (Sorry, Babe, I misplaced my cellphone at home and didn't see your text messages until midnight.)

I am thinking there is some sort of a black hole at the apartment. I was sure that the cellphone is still at the house because unlike these past two days I woke up precisely when the Wake Up Alarm on my cellphone went off. Before leaving for work, I searched all around to no avail. I even sent a text message through the computer but apparently it arrived thirty minutes after I sent it. Throughout the workday, I actively checked my account on the provider. First to see if the phone didn't land on somebody else's and got abused. Second, to see if I missed any important phonecalls and how many text messages got in. All is well. When I got home at midnight, I heard the phone beeping somewhere in the living room. It turned out it sucessfully fell to my newest mothership by the "sofa" possibly when I hit the silence button. Bibi must get a kick out of this mothership/black hole subject. LoL.

Back Log: June 18-24

Let's see, too many things to recount. Caveat for the readers, the following rambles are mainly for self-notes. I should have been more persistent on picture taking. It just escaped me.

Texas Trip
What follows is my account on what happened on this trip after the hilarity that was on the last post. But before we began, I wanted to state that I forgot how 100 degrees weather feels like. Tank tops, shorts, skirts, and summer dresses, SPF 50, minimal to no make-up are fashion staples I anticipated for this trip. I am glad NY has a lot of cute things to borrow to maximize my inner fashionista wannabe. As for the trip, I did what I came for: Bibi's prelim, a friend's wedding, and visiting the siblings.

Bibi practiced the slides for his presentation a couple of times that Thursday night and then once in the morning. "There's a lot of shit going on in this slide," we were hoping he can preface the last of his four topics.

The day of the prelim, Bibi refused to dress up in a suit/jacket, and instead don on his nice dress pants and shirt. He still looked smart nevertheless, LOL. We walked to school around noon. I played a good caterer and media tech while Bibi preparing his paperwork and whatnot.

When he was fighting at the frontline, I spent some time to exchange news and weather with my friends in the department. I excused myself two hours later to think that he must be finished by then. The waiting can be described as parallel to husbands waiting outside for wives delivering their first baby. Bibi finally came out of the room looking a bit worried and relieved at the same time. A minute later, his advisor when out to call him in. He passed!

I am so proud of him having to deal with such a tough and respectable research subject. Biology used to be my forte, I am glad I have somebody who possesses a better understanding on living objects--and most importantly, has good ideas on how to manipulate them.

We celebrated the prelim at O'Bannon's and a dinner at nearby Mexican place. Speaking of viva la comida, I also made panada and pastel from scratch for everybody's snacks on two different days. They got NY's seal of approval. I didn't realize that using rolling pin to make something is a good abs exercise.

The following Saturday, we had a wedding to attend. We arrived at the ceremony thirty minute late due to a planning mishap, i.e., no map. Who doesn't know the way to Waco? Only Bibi and yours truly apparently. Good thing my friend wasn't pronounced a Mrs yet. I am sure Bibi realize the ulterior motive of dragging him to the wedding, that is an exposure to Catholic wedding mass. The reception following the ceremony was in the mixed style of Mexican fiesta (the Mariachi and the food, groom was of Mexican decent) and the usual wedding party activity (the open floor with DJ, the bouquet throwing). Everybody had fun.

On Sunday, Bibi, the siblings and I went to Texas Road House to satisfy everyone's crave for a good steak and for a little bonding time. Then I went to St. Mary's 7 PM mass. Later that night, Bibi and I went to Northgate for his Sunday night poker league.

All in all, it was a good and compact visiting week. I did manage, though, to throw a breakdown tantrum on Bibi two days before leaving CS. That morning, Bibi and I went to the Rec Center together. I went to St. Mary's afterward with mi amiga G to get some ideas of things I need to prepare for a Catholic nuptial. It was an overwhelming experience to realize that my timeline (for a December wedding *gasps* Bibi needs to propose first, no?) is ambitious and has already passed its expiration. I am putting my--I mean, our--plan all on God's hand. Maybe sometime next year is best for everyone. I can spend some time with Mom, we all can have a better planning, and not to mention, it will be more feasible on the financial side. I am hoping NY get a job here, I can't do this without my dearest sister.

I flew back to SCLA on Wednesday ready for the last three days of working that week. The next week was another shutdown week.

--to be continued