Car.. to buy or not to buy?

Saturday, April 28, 2012
... although it's kindda late for me LOL! Currently I have 2 car - a salon car and a SUV. Don't be suprised. It's normal for Bruneians to have more than 1 car per person/ per family. Shocking? Nah! As I said, it's normal here in Brunei. 1 household, here in Brunei, has ATLEAST 3-4 cars per family.. that's the minimum, mind you! My family? Hmm... in this house, there are 7 of us; my parents, myself and 4 brothers. Well, let's just say that each of us has a car... haha!

Truthfully, I had no intention to buy a car. But when my baby Ford kept on giving me problems; I had no choice but to think of buying another. Why no fix it, you would say? The Ford agent here, I can say from experience weren't that helpful. Their spareparts are always not available and to make it available, they have to order it for you. The procedure, you have to deposit 50% of the total amount of the sparepart and wait for 3 weeks - 2 months. What? Isn't agent suppose to have spareparts in hand? And when they queried about my car, you know what they said? "Oh! that car considered ICU already" ICU? SERIOUSLY? Urrggghhh... remind me not to buy an European car. Or was it just not my luck to have a good car.

Anyways, there are pros and cons having a car. In Brunei, you MUST have a car coz honestly, our public transportation ain't that great. Yes, we do have buses. Yes, we do have taxis. No, we don't have trains. No, we don't have MRTs. All I can say that, our public transportations are limited.

You rarely (or almost to never) see any Bruneians chasing after a bus. Unlike moi... khehe.. Yes! I did chase after a bus back when I was living in Singapore. Here? No way! LOL!! See how different environments make different perspectives.

We all know why having a car is an essential but are you ready to buy a car? and maintain them?

If I have a choice, I wouldn't buy a car. Why? Here are my experiences...

1. Installments
Unless you have enough cash with you, then it's ok. But like most of us, we are seeking loans from the banks to buy a car. Installment can be very messy. A car worth B$30K and if you are doing loan from the bank for 7 years, it would cost you B$45K-$50K.. yikes!

2. Insurances and road tax
Ford is now 8 years old and the insurance is getting lower by the year. But now with the SUV, fewwhhh.. and when both cars are 2000cc, you can just imagine the insurances and the road taxes...

3. Maintenance
The servicing, the tyres, the fuel, the oil... all those stuffs. The bigger the car, the bigger the maintenance. Bigger tyre size, the more expensive it be. 2000cc SUV full tank can cost you $30+ of the unleaded fuel. Service is at every 5000KM or 10000KM. Eventhough my car service is every 5000KM or 10000KM, at least it ain't that freaking expensive. My bf's car service is every 15000KM and trust me man, it ain't that cheap. Yikes!

4. Engine knowledge
Living with my baby Ford for the last 8 years, you can say that I'm a bit expert on engines (ford engines) for a woman. LOL! When a warning lights on, I have the feeling what's the problem and I hate to say this but I'm always right.. LOL!

5. Tyre punctures
Oh! Been there... to date, I experienced 4 tyre mishaps. And up till now, I couldn't change the tyre by myself (yes! i'm not ashamed to admit it..)

6. Car wash
I wash and clean the car myself... most of the times. When laziness kicks in, I just 'hire' one of my brothers. For a petite person like me, giving a SUV a bath is a challenge. To reach the roof, I have to use a small ladder or a chair.. imagine that. Manicures are useless at this stage. I can give Ford a bath for 30 minutes to 40 minutes top but it took me an hour to properly clean an SUV.

Hmm... still thinking to buy a car? LOL!! I didn't mean to stop anyonw from buying a car. I'm just merely sharing my experiences...


Novel Review: Maafkan Abang

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Maafkan Abang
by Eyla Hime
562 pages
Fajar Pakeer Sdn Bhd

Like Syurga Di Wajahmu, I read this Maafkan Abang novel online at penulisan2u.my before it was published. But online the title was Maafkan Abang, Tikah. Apart from a word omitted from the title, I was glad the storline is still the same.

Atikah and Hazimi used to be college mate, study buddies and friends back in the days. It all changed when Tikah fell for Hazimi. Hazimi who was with Marissa at that time didn't utter a word about her feelngs to Hazimi to anyone.

Years passed, Atikah landed a job at Hazimi's dad's company and these 2 friends were reunited again. 2 things never change all those years they were apart; Atikah still has feelings for Hazimi and Hazimi still with Marissa.

They held a reunion with their college buddies and there, Hazimi announced that he's getting married with Marissa, of course. 2 hearts were hurt - Atikah's and Yazman; who had loved Marissa since their high school. Yazman, who accidently found out that Atikah loved Hazimi tried to persuad her into his scheme - to break those 2 apart from their marriage. Atikah refused. For her, Hazimi's happiness is her happiness. But Yazman wouldn't have no as the answer. He threatened Atikah by hiring people to beat Hazimi up and landed him in the hospital's bed. Yazman gave Atikah 2 choice: trapped Hazimi into marrying her or she would see Hazimi's and his parents' bodies.

To save the man she loved, Atikah trapped Hazimi into marrying her. They were caught as 'berkhalwat'. Hazimi hated Atikah for it but his father, who was a man of honour, asked Hazimi to marry her. The moment Atikah became Hazimi's wife, her life was a living hell. She was mocked, beaten, abused... you named it, she had it. There was even times I had to stop myself from reading as I couldn't endure the 'pain'.

Atikah, knowing that she's the one to blame for Hazimi's abrupt change in behaviour tried to stand all that was thrown at her until one day, Hazimi's words sliced through her being and she had enough. She tried to confront Yazman to end all these but what did she got? She was raped by Yazman.

Sudah jatuh di timpa tangga.. ever heard those phrase? That's what happened to Atikah. She was tested so many times in so many ways that it makes me wonder, if there is such woman ever exists?

What happened to Tikah? When Hazimi finally found out the truth, was is too late? And would Atikah ever forgive him for what he had done? I mean, how could you forgive a person who treated you like an insect?

To truly 'experience' the novel, you have to read it yourself. I managed to finish this novel in a day and a half (coz I had to force myself to stop) and by the time I finished reading it, "you have fluffy eyes and eye bags" as what my boyfriend said LOL!

My rating: 8/10

Next review: Cintamu Cintaku Satu by Ana Sofiya

Novel Review: Hadirmu Takdirku

Hadirmu Takdirku
by Alina Haizar
480 pages
Kaki Novel Enterprise

My first novel by Alina Haizar,
Aku Yang Kau Tinggalkan
gave a very good impression on me so when I saw Hadirmu Takdirku by the same novelist, I didn't hestitate to take it from the shelves and bought it. Turned out, Hadirmu Takdirmu is Alina Haizar's first novel.. tsk tsk tsk... how could I have missed it?

Wan Jeffery, a rich spoilt boy only used Hana, a "canteen" girl to win a bet. The prize? Reunion with his ex-girldfriend, Lily. Hana, who was naive thought she could have a chance with Jeffery, thinking that deep down Jeffery also loved her like she loved him. Jeff always got what he wants and he made it very clear that wanted Hana or more like Hana's body. When he got what he wants, he was thinking of just leaving Hana like that.

Hana was scared, afraid that she might get pregnant. Jeff going to the US even scared her more - thinking that Jeff would just run away from his responsibilities. She begged Jeff to bring her to the US. Jeff in turn placed his trust on his uncle, Pak Su Adli to look after Hana, just incase she's pregnant. When Hana found out that she's pregnant, she contacted Pak Su Adli, hoping that he would help her when infact, he and Jeff's mum, Datin Maimunah trying to get rid of her and her baby.

Hana was sent to live with Jeff's grandma and so many lies were created by Pak Su Adli and Datin Maimunah to both Hana and Jeff. In the end, both Hana and Jeff thought one of them betrayed another. When Hana fell, she was told her baby didn't survive when infact her baby was given away by Pak Su Adli.

After 7 years, Jeff came back as a changed man. No longer the selfish, playboy guy 7 years ago. Experiences made hhim mature. When he accidently rescued a girl from a horrible accident, he got the shock of his life when the girl, Fiqah called him "Papa". From that, all the lies that were fed to him 7 years ago came back. Pak Su Adli had no choice but to tell the truth. Jeff was furious. He had to find and marry Hana so that he legally could be Fiqah's dad.

Finding Hana was like tracing a ghost. Unknown to the rest of the world, Hana changed her name to Nurul Ain, a famous TV presenter. When Jeff found out who Nurul Ain really is, he tried to provoke Hana into telling him what had happened 7 years ago. He didn't tell her about Fiqah just yet, hoping that Hana would fall in love with him for who he was not because she had to for Fiqah's sake.

When Hana finally fell in love with Jeff, she was furious and hurt (once again) when she found out accidently about Fiqah...

What happened next? Haha.. this time, I let you guys read the novel. Trust me, as much as I like Aku Yang Kau Tinggalkan, I also like this one. Thinking about it, both novels have their similarities. But what make this novel differ from others is that in other novels, the child was always with the mum but in here, both parents didn't know the existance of their child and the father found out the child first and together they looked for their wife and mum..

Took me a day and a half to finish reading this novel. Love it!

My rating: 8/10

Next review: Maafkan Abang by Eyla Hime

Come on... admit it...

Thursday, April 19, 2012
Note to self: I'm not that young anymore! Haha!

Oh! Don't get me wrong. I know that I'm getting older by the seconds BUT I never thought that I would be getting old this fast. Hmmm... realization comes too late?

The symptoms (of me getting older):
1. Cramps
Believe it or not, I get cramps easily; cold environments makes my feet cramps and I always woke up with cramped arms. Nowadays, I'm even wearing socks at work.

2. Patience
I was less patience when I was a bit younger... hehe.

3. Tolerance
I can tolerate all those stuffs and people that used to be (and those who still are) irritating.

4. Seek Forgiveness
I used to be (or still am) a hard-headed, stubborn... you name it, I'm it. Mum told me I inherited that streak from my dad. If I know I'm right, I always stick to what I believe in and I won't apologize even to the elders... back in the days. But now, I know that as the younger generations, no matter how right I am, if I hurt the elders' feelings, yes, I seek their forgiveness. Why? I'm getting mature, I guess. Besides I kept on thinking of those people who never got the chance to seek for forgiveness from those who had left them. If one day, fate has it that I leave this life early, I want to be forgiven.

5. Ignorance
 In order to be accepted by my own peers, sometimes I (or maybe you) would do anything to be liked, don't you? Thinking about it, I kept on asking myself why friends like to be my friends? Is it because of me, of who I am or is it because being me friends is beneficial? Surprisingly, I found that most of my friends came into the latter category... haha! Friends with benefits do exist... I guess that's the reason why I have less 'real' friends. Pathetic? Heck NO! Then I know who are my true friends.

6. Drive Slower
I think this would fall under #2 but then to think about it, I don't really drive that slow nowadays. The only reason I drive slower because of the traffic... so.... haha

Ok... I guess that's enough symptoms (for now) for me to announce to the world that I'm getting older... LOL!

(Another) note to self: Age is just a number. How you live your life is what counts ;) Enjoy your age people. It doesn't come back....


Novel Review: Perlu Kamu

Perlu Kamu
by Nia Qurratun'Aini
420 pages
Fajar Pakeer Sdn Bhd

Ever had your dream comes true? Hah! that's sounds very easy.
Ok... let me rephrase that. Ever thought the girl/boy in your dreams comes alive?

Well, that's what happened in this novel. Iqram Iskandar had the same dream over and over again. He dreamt of a same woman over and over again. He remembered every inch of the woman's face that he asked an artist to paint 'her' for him. 

Ilham Nur Insyirah called Iqram 'Mr Weird' the first time she met him. Why? Because Iqram had found the woman he dreamt of and he asked Insyirah to smile the first time he bumped into her. 

One fateful day, Insyirah's boyfriend, Zafirul passed away and Iqram, who was her officemate offered to send her to Zafirul's home. Unfortunately, on their way home, Iqram's car broke down forcing them to stay in the car together while waiting for the rain to subside. Luck was not on their sides as they were caught by the religious officers for 'khalawat'

Then, I guess we all know what happened to the couples. Iqram willing to take the responsibilities but that cause Insyirah's hatred to him. She accused Iqram of taking advantages on her vulnerability. Iqram tried to make Insyirah fell in love, told her that he fell in love with her way before he met her and the painting was the proof. Insyirah ignored him as her love stayed with Zafirul but when you were showered with love everyday, you eventually gave in and so did Insyirah. Of course, in between so many stuffs happened.
But all in all, everything comes to a good end. I love a happy ending. Who doesn't right? But in opinion, this is just like any other novel. Honestly to say, this novel is 'forgettable'. The writer can do better....

My rating: 6/10

Next review: Hadirmu Takdirku by Alina Haizar

A forgotten past....

Monday, April 16, 2012
When a relationship fails, we always say, "hope we can be friends.." or something as such. But do you honestly think that after a broken relationship, you and you ex can be friends? like you used to be?

Hmmm.. for me, it would never be. NO, I'm not saying I'm a revengeful person but I'm not a hypocrites either. Deep down, no matter how much you want a broken relationship turns to a friendship, in a real life, some things are never meant to be back as it was before. And that is the best reason I can give why I don't want a friendship to turn into a relationship. Why? 

It is easy to turn a friendship into a relationship but when the relationship fails, you lose both - a friend and an ex-boy/girlfriend. 

I know, my opinion might be biased but that's my life experience. Why do I brought this thing up? When one of my relationships ended, my ex told me, "we can still be friends", "keep in touch" and of course, knowing that your failed relationship didn't hold any grudges on both sides, it is consider a win-win situation for both. But then of course, we never keep in touch and basically we are a total strangers to each other soon after that... until one day, "have u ever thought of me?" came. 

What? Out of the blue? Hmmm... honestly no! No matter how long I had known you, once you treated me like a stranger, YOU ARE a stranger to me. I'm not a hypocrites that I would smile and try to make you feel better by saying that "yes, I have thought of you". For me, you are my forgotten past... remember you? Might be on a spur of moment but that's it. 

Living on the past won't get you anywhere.. living your life presently might get you somewhere and living forward will eventually get you somewhere...

Novel Review: Syurga Di Wajahmu

Syurga Di Wajahmu
by Laila Hanni
539 pages
Kaki Novel Enterprise

The first time I read this novel online from penulisan2u.my, I was head over heels. But it took me ages to finally go and buy this novel and it took me (another) ages to finaly read this novel. And at last! This morning, I managed to finish this novel. Haha! Talk about nothing else to do...

The first time Hairi, a medical student, met Idayu, it was love at first sight for him. But to tame Idayu, a beautiful wonderful, shy girl was the most challenging task ever for this city boy. The only way for him to have her was to propose her. After 2 meetings, one month of knowing each other, they finally got engaged.

But when Idayu found out that she was born out of wedlock (her real mother was raped by several men), she was devastated and suffering from low-self esteem. Knowing that no one would ever accept her with her uncertain status, she decided to break off her engagement to Hairi without letting him knew the real reason. Both were heart broken; Idayu had to let go of her love and Hairi, thinking that Idayu cheated on him.

6 years later, Idayu managed to finish her nursing degree decided to work in a home, caring for the ill Engku Maryam. Her beauty caught Engku Lokman's attentions. Engku Lokman was a playboy who lived a sinful life. Women for him were just to satisify his needs. Eversince he saw Idayu in an inappropriate manners, he couldn't stop but to think about her. One night, he entered Idayu's room and raped her, thinking that by having her body, it would satisfy his needs. Idayu ran away...

When Engku Badrul, Lokman's dad found out, he forced Lokman to marry Idayu (by bribing him with a biggest share in the company), hoping that Idayu would change Lokman's playboy nature. Astrid, Lokman's domestic partner at that time was furious when she found out that Lokman was getting married. But Lokman promised her that after 3 months of marriage with Idayu, he would be back with her.

But Lokman never thought marrying Idayu was the best thing that ever happened in his life. She thought him of the true meaning of life and forgave him for his sinful life, thinking that she had change him. Lokman was head over heels in love with Idayu that he forgot all about Astrid and his promises until one day, Astrid came back and everything became haywire; Lokman explained to Astrid that he couldn't another; Astrid wanted Lokman back; Idayu was getting suspicious.

One day, sh saw Lokman and Astrid together, entering into once-Lokman's love-nest condiminium with Astrid. She ran away, met up with her ex-fiance who still love her. I guess it's true that if you love someone, seeing that someone happy eventhough it's not with you, is good enough for you. And that what Hairi did. He tried to mend Idayu and Lokman's misunderstanding... ahhh! so noble!

Of course, it's a happy ending! I love novel with a happy ending coz for me, life is not as perfect as those in the novels and my only 'escape' route from this unperfect world is thru reading... call me a dreamer but who never dream of a happy life? ;)

My rating: 8/10

Next review: Perlu Kamu by Nia Qurratun'Aini


Bicara Hati vs Cinta Buat Emelda

Haha... why do I always do comparison between the malay dramas?
Before, I did Bicara Hati vs Gemersik Kalbu, now I'm doing Bicara Hati vs Cinta Buat Emelda.

Honestly, I love both dramas and both novels, Damya Hanna's Bicara Hati and Aleya Aneesa's Kasih Antara Kita. Bicara Hati aired once a week (doesn't these people know, waiting is a torture for an impatient person like moi? LOL) while Cinta Buat Emelda aired every Monday to Thursday!

Episodes? Gosh... don't let me go there! Cinta Buat Emelda is coming to her 13th episode while Bicara Hati, which started aired last February is only now coming to 15th episode! 

If before, I said Gemersik Kalbu was slow, now I have to say Bicara Hati is slow. So many unnecessary scenes. I know I shouldn't expect novel and drama to be the same eventho the drama is an adaption of the novel coz it would never be the same but in Bicara Hati, the drama is way out of adaption, at the moment... But no matter what, I'm sticking to Bicara Hati till the end... 

I mean, you cannot say no to Sharnaaz Ahmad...haha

As for Cinta Buat Emelda, wow! I never expect to be amazed by a drama but this one does! From the first episode till their 12th episode, this drama never fails to (thanks for pointing it out =D ) bore me! And for the first time in watching drama, every episode, my tears never fail to burst... haha... so melodramatic! But it's so true! And what make this drama so good is that at the end of every episode, there is always something suprising coming up and then the wording appeared.... "bersambung..." and that what makes me looking forward for each episodes!

Can't wait for the ending for both dramas.


Another Wedding... Another Cousin-in-law...

Last weekend, 8th April, we crossed the borders, crossed the Brunei river and came home to my mum's homeland, Temburong! 

I rarely come home to Temburong coz basically there is nothing to do there. Apart from my grandma, my muslim-convert uncle and his family and my youngest uncle and his family; all my mum's siblings have migrated to Bandar due to work commitments.

But we all came home to help celebrate my cousin, Fatin's wedding. She is my uncle hwa's (or his muslim name, Jeffery) daughter. Still young but then hey, if that's what's written for her, we are happy to help her celebrate!

Congratulation Fatin and my new cousin-in-law, Rahmat! 
Lovely couple =)

Told you, there is lots of weddings and engagements in the family this year ;)

p.s. the second photo is taken from cousin, Nadia's fb.

Novel Review: Ad + Iz

Ad + Iz
by Eury Athena
636 pages
Kaki Novel Enterprise

Finished reading this novel weeks ago but I just haven't got the time to update - update everything I guess!

Anyway, how shall I reviewed this novel coz it is a complicated storyline. Hah! Complicated pun salah, straight forward pun salah.. khehe.

Adrianna Mayesa had a very complicated life. Her mom died when she was younger, leaving her with her stepfather who later married a widow with 2 children. Hmmm... reminds me of Cinderella but in Cinderella, her father married a widow with 2 children. Back to the review; and of course, the stepmother didn't like Ad - short for Adrianna. Left her to feed for herself and when she got employed, she was expected to give her salary to the stepmum.

Tengku Farriel Izumi, the hero on the other hand, well, as the name went, was born into a branch of royalty. When he was a teenager, he found a girl in the alley - Arianna Maisara who was living with a cancer. He brought her home and his  treated her as their adopted daughter but not for Farriel. For him, Maisara was his first love. When she died, he was devastated.

Farriel's dad, Tengku Faris would do anything for his wealth and family. He tracked down someone who was similar to Maisara, Ad and sponsored her to study at the same elite school as Farriel. Farriel, who hated Ad for reminding him of Ann always bullied Ad at school.

Years gone by when Ad and Farriel accidently met when Ad who was sending dresses to Farriel's home was mistaken for Farriel's girlfriend. 3 hours after their accidental 'reunion', Ad and Farriel were asked to marry by Farriel's grandma. 

Ok... I gotta admit, the beginning of the story was quiet interesting but then everything heading to 'normal'. Ad and Farriel married; fought; cried and eventually fell in love with each other until Farriel's real girlfriend, Marina came back and wanted Farriel back into her life.

Then the story got complicated from there. Tengku Faris, who was blinded with wealth saw an opportunity with Marina when he found out that Marina inherited wealth from her parents. With his plans, he tried to break Ad and Farriel apart and asked Marina to seduce his own son!! Gosh! 

Anyway, Ad and Farriel fought again and Ad ran away. When Farriel finally managed to find her and explained everything, someone came and shot Ad... just like in a movie! LOL!!

I don't know how to review this novel exactly. Read it and let you be the judge of it.

My rating: 6.5/10

Next review: Syurga Di Wajahmu by Laila Hanni