Journal #326

I went to bed early last night because I was feeling tired and I need to wake up early to travel to the eastern end of Singapore. My uncle from my mom side invited my family and I to his house for lunch, which consisted of steamboat and home-made chicken rice.

After the lunch, my family and I went over to another cousin’s house. Upon entering, I really like how minimal it was.

The living room has a few wooden traditional Chinese sofa and an overhead projector to view videos from a tv box. The walls are painted white with specially designed false ceiling. There are three bedrooms. The first bedroom, which is the masters bedroom, is minimal with just a bed, a wardrobe, and a chest of drawers. The guest bedroom is also sparsely decorated with just a bed, a tv console and a wide-screen television. The last room is the work room where my cousin does her work related to photography.

My cousin, now knowing how she rolls, kind of got my admiration. She’s a photographer, having published works online and in galleries. She also take on photographing works for clients. Other than that, she also drives for Uber and is currently studying to be an electrical engineer. Once she’s done, she would be licensed to work with home-based electrical wiring and circuit breakers. And I think she can draw too.

After the short visit to my cousin house, my family and I went back home. On the train back, I actually manage to get down and put in about one thousand words for my novel on my iPad.

We alighted at Joo Koon station where I treated my family to eat at Han’s. For dinner, I ordered a cup of local style black coffee and a plate of chicken burgers with salad and fries on the side. I wasn’t that hungry because of the steamboat and chicken rice but still, it’s better that I eat something filling so that I won’t go hungry at night.

You know, I told my cousin that I’m a writer and my sister is an artist. Then she suggested that we should collaborate to create something. Since I’m writing a book, I could get my sister to help me illustrate the book cover. Now, to expand that further, I thought maybe I could write a comic book while my sister draws. There is another thing we could do. Since my sister is a digital artist, and I know how to program and do have basic experience in game development, we could develop a game.

But all that is hard to achieve. My sister is a full-time student and I am a full-time software developer. By the time we both come back home, we are already exhausted. I still got my own writing to do and she got her homework. However, never say never. We will have to find a way to make it happen if we really want it. The only good thing we have now is a rather stable home.

And lastly, one of my aunt knows I’m writing a book because my mom told her. Well, I suppose it’s a good thing. That means, somehow I will have to make it happen because I’m being held accountable.

Ok, that’s all for today. I will have to go back to my writing.

Journal #299

I will start off this journal with the following quote:

“The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.” – Marcus Aurelius

To me that quote is all about being self-aware, understanding yourself, and doing things that you know and love. Don’t let yourself get caught up with whatever others are doing and forgetting yourself and your whys.

What happened

I came down with a runny nose for no apparent reason with an upper back and neck aches. The latter I knew what caused them. Yesterday, I did spend some time lying down on bed and used my phone. My back and neck weren’t supported properly. As for the runny nose, I don’t know why. Overall, it ruined my day.

Yesterday I mentioned that I will migrate my photos from both my iPhones to the new iPhone X today. That was what I did early in the morning. Of course, something had to go wrong during the migration. In my confused and tired state, wanting to charge my phones, I unplugged my iPhone 7 Plus from my MacBook during the transfer. The photos app on my laptop simply stopped responding and I had to force quit the app and try again. The import was mostly successful One of the photo apparently had some corruption issue and I couldn’t import it. sigh

I joined my parents for breakfast outside and after I came back, I went ahead to watch a movie call Acts of Vengeance on Netflix. I watched it without any expectations and that’s good. Because at the end of the movie, I found it to be pretty good. The story is pretty predictable but I like how they segment the show according to quotes from Meditations by Marcus Aurelius.

I also spent some time in the morning to do some workout with the dumbbells. The side lateral shoulder raise workout actually did some wonders for my neck pain. It helped to loosen up the muscles around my collar bones.

I also spent sometime chatting with a former colleague from my previous company just to catch up on things.

Before I knew it, it was almost lunch and I was feeling both tired and hungry. I went ahead for a quick shower and headed out to the nearby mall for lunch. At first I wanted to eat at Sushi Express but I saw that it was almost full. I didn’t want to sit near any strangers so I went down to the Japanese restaurant call Kabe no Ana. I ordered the following items:

A hot cup of matcha.

A plate of pork sausage and bacon in tomato sauce with cheese.

While waiting for my food to arrive, I actually dozed off because of the medicine I took just prior to leaving the house.

I didn’t loiter around after lunch. I went home straight. On the bus, I actually dozed off once again until I arrived at my bus stop. Once I’m home, I decided to just take a nap.

When I finally woke up my nap, it was already 7pm. I got a little concerned because it may affect my sleep timing later. But there’s nothing else I could do so I left it at that.

While waiting for dinner to be cooked, I went about to do some pushups. And before I knew it, my nose started running again and I went on a sneezing fit. So this definitely isn’t some kind of allergy anymore.

Dinner was a sumptuous spread and I really enjoyed it.

After dinner, I went about watching some videos on YouTube.

How I feel

I feel sick and tired in general.

What am I watching now

I spent much of my night watching YouTube videos. Below is one that that I’ve watched that has more value over the others.

I’m constantly inspired by serial entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk. I am not an entrepreneur but what he says apply to even employees or workers. Have the patience, enjoy the process of grinding and hustling, being very self-aware and stop complaining and bullshitting yourself. Watching his stuff constantly keep me going.

Journal #266

Christmas went by and came Boxing Day. It is the start of the working week and is also the last week of the year.

What Happened

First half of the day was spent in office preparing an executable that can work in customer’s environment. The previous version couldn’t run at all and none of us know what why.

I tested the executable on two different machines a few times, found bugs, got my colleague to fix it, and repeat the cycle.

Then I went for lunch at Green Dot where I have vegetarian food.

The second half of the day was spent in the customer’s building, specifically their datacenter, where my team lead and I focused on deploying the application, and testing it. We also tried different configurations to ensure it works all the time.

By 5.30pm, we were asked to pack up and leave. So we did and I made my way north to Orchard. It was because I’m meeting my friends for dinner.

Earlier today, my friend came across Tanuki Raw, a Japanese restaurant, and suggested we go eat it. I said ok and before I know it, it was set for today.

Since I finished work early and was pretty near Orchard Road, I arrived first. When I got there, I spent some time walking around some of the malls, just strolling and listening to music. It was to kill time.

When the first friend finally arrived, we made our way to Don Don Donki where he looked for roasted nuts and some snacks to buy. The other friend arrived about fifteen minutes later. We made our way to the restaurant and started queueing and it took up to 45 minutes before there was table for us.

I was already starving by then and luckily for me, I still had one last rolled-up pancake with red bean paste packed in my backpack. I had gotten it earlier, after lunch, to serve as my afternoon tea break. It was to prevent my stomach from eroding itself away by its own acid. While working, I had already eaten two of the three.

Once we sat down, we browsed through the menu and ordered the food we wanted to eat. It took about 15 minutes before the first item arrived on our desk. I thought it’s pretty fast considering the restaurant was packed full of people.

That first item was the Golden Kani Maki. Basically, it’s sushi with seaweed, soft shell crab, and covered in salted-egg sauce. For the price of S$18.90, it was actually pretty good and definitely worthwile.

We ordered the same main meal, Kaisen Chirashi Don because it was the most worthwhile at $24.90.

For drinks, I went with a pint of Sharkinator, which is beer a slight hint of citrus. I like the taste and think the price is reasonable at S$12.

I ordered the drink because I wanted something to drink to relax and for my friends, it’s about ordering the Fresh Oysters which cost $12. The restaurant’s policy was that you have to order an alcoholic drink before you can order 6 oysters.

I won’t say the oyster taste that fresh or good. There’s a heavy hint of fishy-taste.

We also ordered the Truffle Sweet Potato fries, which tasted pretty good for S$10.90.

After the dinner, we left for home. One of my friend took the north-bound train while the other and I took the west-bound train.

How I feel

I felt detached and generally tired in the morning and that was even after drinking coffee. My eyes were heavy from the insufficient sleep.

As it got to the afternoon, I felt better and my mood was kind of lifted by the progress my team and I made at work. The application was working as intended and is almost ready for actual production use.

By the time I met up with my friend, I felt happy and has been that way for most of the night.

Along the way, we just had a chat about our work day.

What am I watching now

I was browsing for new music based on what I tend to watched and found the music video for the song call Crazy Law by Kazaky.

I just love the beats and the bass.

Being Grateful

I’m grateful for my friends.

Journal #265

Merry Christmas to everyone and today I got to spend a vast majority of my time outside of my house. This was necessary for my mental well-being. Staying at home for the whole day was just bad overall and detrimental to my inspirations and content creation.

What happened

I had a quick shower and had Subway for breakfast before meeting up with my friend at Jurong Point to catch Star Wars: The Last Jedi at 10.40am. I won’t say the movie was particularly interesting for me and the length of it made it a drag to watch through.

After the movie, we went to the Legendary Hong Kong restaurant as usual. I ordered Red Bean Ice for my drink.

Then Seafood Fried Rice with XO Sauce as my main meal.

I also ordered a rice noodle roll with Shrimps in soy sauce but I didn’t take any picture of that.

It’s not the best Hong-Kong style food that I have eaten. It’s just familiar.

After that, we walked around the mall before I left to meet another friend to go to the Prudential Carnival in downtown Singapore.

Turns out, I wasn’t really into carnivals because I just don’t like rides. So we just watched people screaming their lungs off on those rides and left early. We decided to go to another carnival also by Prudential and came upon the Red Dot Design Museum along the way.

That caught my attention and I wanted to go in instead. We got the tickets and went in. I found myself attracted by the various designs and ideas people have about urban living, user experience, and daily appliances.

Here are some random photos that I took to show you what I am talking about. Some of the photos are not really in focus because they were taken quickly. I just wanted to capture the ideas.

After we are done, we went to have some drinks at the cafe within the museum to use up the coupons that we got alongside the museum ticket. I ordered an iced Mocha, which turned out to be pretty good while my friend ordered bottled water.

Then we went to Esplanade and have dinner there. My friend suggested eating at Supply and Demand because of the Truffle Fries, which he said was very good.

I ordered a bottle of Erdinger Weissbier, which got poured into a Weizen glass

It went along with grilled fish of the day with two sides prepared in accordance to the chef’s wishes.

And the main highlight of the day are the Truffle fries, given the emphasis my friend put on it.

Spreading throughout the day was my activity of playing Sky Force: Reloaded on my iPhone, chatting with my friend, and looking for jobs.

How I feel

Throughout the day, there were various feelings depending on what I read, experienced or seen. My primary operating mode revolves around my feelings and my outputs are based on how I channel my feelings.

The commentary: Of course we don’t read poetry. We’re Singaporean published on Channel NewsAsia got me pretty upset at the state of art in Singapore though I know there are good Singaporean artists out there.

Going through the exhibits at the design museum got me to think about the state of design in Singapore. It was another thing that got me feeling despondent. Despite Singaporean children going through Design and Technology in school, almost no one end up becoming an industrial designer like Jonathan Ive or James Dyson.

The above two feelings are related to how I see the economy of the future is going to be primarily all about creation and producing original or innovative stuff with your skills backed up by great service and I’m not sure if Singapore is ready given the current state of affairs.

As I was going home, I also don’t feel like going to work tomorrow. And feeling a deep sense of trepidation regarding my upcoming reservist training, which is in a week’s time.

Other than the above stuff, I’m feeling good. It’s definitely better than yesterday since I’m not coop up at home, got to see stuff, and eat nice food (not the healthiest).

What am I watching now

I’m enjoying music by Madeon, a French DJ and music producer. I’m watching an old video of him performing live as I’m writing this journal.

I have grown to enjoy his music a lot and the tendency to put them on loop.

Being grateful

I’m grateful for friends that chose to hang out with me.

Journal #253 – Documenting my Monday

After spending the last half an hour struggling to narrow down a decent thought to start writing from, I decided to give up. Documenting my day shall be the default mode rather than wasting any more time trying to find a perfect topic to talk about. And part of my decision process included me writing something on Facebook that got me settled down.

So what’s my day like?

I went to work slightly earlier today because there is a company-hosted dialogue session for new employees. The best part of my morning was I was melting as I made my way to office from the MRT station. In other words, I was basically sweating non-stop until my shirts (I wear two layers, one to absorb sweat) got soaked through. My body for some reason felt exceeding warm and just keep sweating. Yesterday was fine actually. The worse was when I was getting my daily Starbucks and I was just standing there waiting for the barista to make my coffee.

At the dialogue session, the person conducting was one of the department manager introduced himself and got us to introduce ourselves. Then he talked about how the company is transiting to building products instead of just providing services and doing projects.

After the whole talk, I am not even convinced because I have been lied to so many times by company management about building products and Singaporeans in general always think in terms of project. It’s almost like they are incapable of thinking in terms of product development. That’s just my conclusion from what I have seen. I want that conclusion to change and in order for that to change, I need to see actual Singaporeans doing product development.

I would like someone with way more experience in product development to share what are some of the most common approaches to product development in a company. Whatever I know right now is theoretical (I think closer to be naive) and I have never got the chance to experience it. And by theoretical I mean some of it is based off this article by ThoughtWorks. I also have an idealistic view of how products should be built.

One aspect of product development, which I think is important, is the process has to be design-driven. To me, without being design-driven, it will be very hard to lay down the foundations for future growth because you don’t get the chance to ask the right questions.

The other is having a team of product developers, not just developers who think short term and simply want to get the project done and over with.

One last very important thing is funding. I believe that you need to have a delicate set of funds to support the process of product development. You can think of it as an upfront investment. I don’t know how correct I am on this part but I have experienced enough where the company simply don’t have the money to support product development because the money comes from existing projects. All the research and development, trial and error, etc. simply couldn’t be done properly. All that tend to make me doubt the company about its ability to build and sell products. Again, I could be wrong. Someone please correct me on this.

After that, I went back to my desk and continued to implement whatever features I need to do and fix any bugs found. Tomorrow is when we will be deploying a proper set of applications for the actual use by the customer over the holiday week. So we will be testing it heavily over the next few days to identify any further issues and fix them fast.

Thus far, I hadn’t been enjoying the process of working on this project. The biggest gripe that I have is with the project approach the company is taking despite their claim of wanting it to be a product. But it’s not up to me at this moment because I’m not in that position. And I have no intention of being in that position because I never want to manage people. I just want to focus on doing what I am doing to the best of my ability.

The other gripe I have is with the design side of things. Design just wasn’t done properly and every developer is just implementing stuff their way just to meet the basic use cases. Our team lead did try to ensure whatever we implemented is useable and perform well but that’s about it. It’s not his fault really because his plate is pretty much full too. At my company, one person will be responsible for more and more projects over the years. So with that kind of multitasking, I don’t think it will be possible for that one person to think of the future of a so-called product.

For me, I did try my best to think of the future—think about how the user will want to use the application and what will happen if I don’t do certain things. Within the short time frame, I did whatever I could to add certain kind of controls, ensure certain kind of interaction the user can have with the application. But I also know that I could be completely wrong with what I implemented and will need to change later. I have also tried to ensure code reusability by introducing more layering.

By around 5.45pm, I was done gathering the latest client code from source control and compiling the codes into a deployable application for tomorrow. I put the compiled files into a folder on the share folder where my other colleague was preparing the server stuff. I waited for my colleague to finish putting everything onto a thumbdrive before leaving.

So tomorrow, I will go to the customer office to do the deployment and testing the applications. I do hope it goes smoothly.

I went home to rain and then join my mom for dinner at the Legendary Hong Kong restaurant. I ordered Seafood fried rice with XO sauce, pineapple drink (basically canned pineapple with syrup), and steamed shrimp dumplings.

Nothing too fancy but then the price tag is just not worth it. The food is just too average and I could get them cheaper from elsewhere. I think I will avoid going to this restaurant in the future.

Journal #241 – Kick back Saturday

Today is the 15th of the 10th month on the Chinese calendar. I chose to go to a Chinese temple nearby with my parents to offer some prayers and after that, we went to have vegetarian food at the nearby coffee shop.

Every religion has their specific days to do certain things. For us taoist, it’s the same. On the 1st and 15th of the Chinese calendar, the devout will go to the temple to offer their incenses and donations. After which, they will proceed to eat vegetarian and local vegetarian food tend to include quite a lot of mock-meat.

After that, my parents and I spent sometime watching a local Chinese TV production call Happy Can Already on my Apple TV through the Toggle app. It is actually one of the only shows in Singapore that feature Chinese dialects primarily.

Now that’s what I call spending time with family.

After that, I went to download an app call Sky Force: Reloaded on Apple TV and spent some time playing it. Drudgery is involve too. Patience is required. It’s a vertically scrolling shoot ’em up game that more closely resemble a roguelike due to its persistence of the plane upgrades. It reminds me of Everspace, which I throughly enjoy playing too.

You know, in the past, I never had the patience to play such game. If I keep dying in a game like more than three or four times, I just give up. Now, I suppose I have outgrown the traditional FPS games for their instant gratifications and moved on to something else. Or maybe it was companies like EA, Activision Blizzard, and Ubisoft that ruined games for me- excessive micro transactions, franchises milked dry, lack of innovation, and overpriced. And I find fault with their lack of investment in the lore of the game. The games these company make doesn’t scream investment or quality anymore unlike the old Westwood-made RTS like Command and Conquer…

Oops…sorry, I digressed. Ranting about video game should be a blog entry on its own.

After playing that game for a while, good thing that it also sync to my iPhone via Game Center, I went to watch Tokyo Ghoul on Netflix. If I remember correctly, I’m already on Season 2.

After that, I went out with my family to eat dinner at Hot Tomato. I had fish and chips while my parents and sister had salmon mango salsa. Then we went shopping at NTUC to get grocery. It was one just half an hour ago that we reached home and I got down to write this journal.

On the way home, I found myself enjoying Hollwood Undead’s album called Five 1 with the Apple AirPods. The bass and mid-range is just good and the music doesn’t sound cramp together.

So indeed, tonight is a kick back Saturday.

Journal #220 – Singles’ Day, Just another chilling day

Today is actually marked as Singles’ Day. It’s a festival that originate from China celebrating single hood. It is also a day where irresponsible consumerism rules because things will be on massive sales and people buy these things en-mass. Just like Black Friday or any other day where companies make compulsory consumption a thing.

To me, it doesn’t really affect me. It’s just another Saturday. I woke up much later today, at around 9.45am. After brushing my teeth, I went out with my parents to have breakfast. After we came back home, we made our respective coffees and I proceed to start up my desktop to play Everspace.

I played for quite a while consistently and for the first time while I was playing through Sector 5 to 6, I didn’t die. I had been very very careful with my resources and the battles I got into. My longer than usual sleep and the coffee definitely helped with my reaction time and calmness.

Then I finally reached Sector 7. There was a moment when I felt excited. It was the last sector of the game and also the end.

After several nerve-wrecking situations in sector 7, I managed to finish the game by early afternoon.

I took 35 tries just to reach this stage. Talk about patience and drudgery.

After that, the game was about collecting 8 DNA pieces. I played for the next couple of hours but by then, I got pretty tired.

I had my late lunch and was waiting for the rain to stop. These past few days, the weather in Singapore had been rather wet. The rain can get pretty heavy.

Once the weather cleared up for a bit, I went for a 5km run. That actually wore me out but it was good.

I went for a shower and decided to just lie down and read the Jony Ive biography until my family members are ready to go out for dinner.

We went to Crystal Jade and ordered a whole bunch of dishes, including meat. I didn’t eat the meat but it doesn’t mean my family don’t.

First dish, steamed buns and Po Lo Pork.

Second dish, Xiao Long Bao.

Third and fourth dishes, stir-fried french beans with minced meat and sautéed vegetable with three kinds of eggs (scrambled, salted, century).

I want to note that the fourth dish was the worse due to the strong ammonia from the century egg. At first, we thought the food was spoilt until we narrowed down the ammonia. So, next time we will not order this dish.

Fifth dish, sweet and sour fish.

Sixth dish, stir-fried prawns. And these prawns are frozen. Very obvious from their sheen.

So you see, even Crystal Jade’s standard isn’t even there. They can’t even use fresh prawns.

Seventh dish, was a vegetarian one. It’s the fried beancurd skin with mushroom strips.

Overall, the dinner was filling but in terms of quality, it’s just isn’t there. I expected better. Anyway, it was my treat.

After the dinner, my family went to the NTUC supermarket to get stuff for a vegetarian soup that my mom wants to prepare tomorrow.

By the time we got home, it was already 10.15pm. That’s when I got down to business and start writing this journal. I shall spend the rest of the night watching some show and turn in.

Journal #209 – Broke my vegetarian streak, Work was swarming

I went to work this morning and decided to order Veggie Delite sub from Subway to diversify my breakfast. Turns out I actually enjoy eating just veggies.

The morning at work was decent and I focused on fixing some minor issues and do up some minor features required by the customer. A part of me was feeling bored but I just have to do it. Part of the drudgery.

As it progressed towards the end of the work day, I got swarmed with stuff. There were some issues with enabling SSL for the web service. Then there was another issue with the authorization module where the logged on user didn’t have the correct set of accesses retrieved from the database. Following that was an improper implementation of the access control on the client side. Got quite frustrated. I gave up on trying to fix the first two as it was already 6pm. Time for me to go home and wind down for the day. I will fix the issues tomorrow.

At night, I had dinner consisting of porridge, fried vermicelli, and roasted chicken. The chicken part, well, it disgusted me when I ate it but I didn’t want to waste food and so I ate it. I ate a drumstick and a piece of chicken breast. The porridge did have pork belly and that I discard it. Tomorrow, I had to reset my diet back to vegetarian.

After dinner, I went on to do what I usually do at night. That’s winding down, clearing my head of work and focus on relaxing, and bring my mind back to the state of zen (somewhat).

Ok, that’s all for tonight.

Journal #185 – Meals with Family

The hawker center near my house opened for business about three days ago. So my parents and I decided to have our breakfast there.

We had rice with fish (Spanish Mackerel) slice soup.

For $5, the fish slices are thick, fresh, and there is quite a lot of them. The soup itself is clear, well seasoned with a touch of saltiness.

After breakfast, we went home after packing Chicken Rice for my younger sister who always sleep until noon on weekends before waking up.

By right, the afternoon was supposed to be spent with my friend, B, but he decided to postpone it because of IBS attack.

So I spent the afternoon playing Everspace. Because it’s a roguelike game, I spent most of the time grinding, slowly earning enough credits to upgrade my ship. I must have sucked at these kind of games as my game always end by the third sector, killed by my enemies.

Then my family and I went out for dinner at The Good Trio Chinese restaurant located at JCube, Jurong East.

We ordered our food and so we had to content ourselves with empty plates and unused utensils.

The first thing that arrived was Chrysanthemum Tea.

The tea itself is not well brewed and is almost tasteless.

Then came the Xiao Long Bao. Not particularly good to eat. The skin is a bit thick and the soup inside is not well made.

Next up is the Chinese Ramen with Seafood and some kind of milky white broth. It was one of the better dish with a balance broth taste. Noodles were a tad bit hard but not outright inedible.

Next up is the BBQ Pork Rib. This was the slightly better dish although it was on the salty side and the meat on certain part of each piece of rib is overcooked. I guess it’s my bias because I like to eat meat.

Then came the crispy pig intestine. This dish was ordered by my second sister because she found it nice. I didn’t eat this dish because the moment it arrived, I could smell it being not well-washed or cooked long enough.

After the pig intestine, while we were still scrambling to eat the rest, the main carbohydrate dish came. Funny how, it came mid-way through our meal. We were given the choice of white rice and mixed grain rice with beans during the ordering process. I went with the latter.

This is the only thing that I enjoy eating. It didn’t taste complex and is healthy. I like the balance between hard and soft.

After the rice, the deep fried yam chunk covered with maltose came.

The inside is soft as with all yam. I love the inside as I love yam. But the outside, with the maltose, it is too sweet for my liking. I don’t really take sweet stuff anymore. The yam taste and the maltose just don’t go well together. It’s like they are two separate thing.

Next up is the rice vermicelli with prawns. I ate this much later as it was on the other side of the table. My sisters and parents were eating it while I ate my rice and other dishes.

Instead of eating it separately, I took a mouthful and a prawn and dump it on my plate which still had the rice. Mixing it in and eating them together just made everything taste better.

The spinach dish came later but I ate it first because it was placed right in front of me.

I enjoy this dish. Like the rice, it wasn’t particularly overwhelming and tasted simple.

To conclude the dinner, the herbal chicken soup came. I took a bowl with two pieces of chicken and various kind of mushrooms.

Somehow, I found the soup to be a tad salty. I did ask my family About it but they said it tasted just right. I guess it’s just me. Or maybe it’s that I’m overly sensitive to certain kind of seasoning.

After the dinner, we spent some time walking around JCube before making our way to IMM. My family bought some grocery and some other household items. The latter I found to be a form of unnecessary consumption. Well, that’s the minimalist talking. I have reached a point where whatever in-store advertisement or sales tactics just won’t work on me because I keep training myself mentally to ignore them. I trained myself to think about what I need and the purpose. Impulse purchase I like think believe that it is a thing of the past for me.

Ok, that’s all for my update today.

Here I conclude my journal for today.

Journal #178 – Outing with Friends

Early this morning, I went out to meet my friends for a buffet lunch at a restaurant called 10 at Claymore, Pan Pacific Hotel. The purpose of this outing was to catch up, have some fun, and also in a way, celebrate my friend and my birthday. Our birthdays are just one day apart in October.

I would say it was a mixed cuisine buffet with Japanese, Western, and some Singapore dishes. From where I am sitting, I would say, I don’t think it’s very popular but then the ambience is pretty alright.

This is what is on my desk.

The restaurant attempts to be a fine-dining location but I don’t think the utensils are correct. I would say it’s nice that we get a cup of ice water first.

As for the food, there is some varieties and I went for the sashimi first.

I know, it doesn’t look very appetizing. The condiments, fake wasabi and soy sauce, I just took very little. It’s all about the intentionality and conservation. If I don’t need it, why should I take more?

The fish slices themselves are decent in terms of quality. They do have the firmness, not too soggy-like or have any fishy smell. But I have tasted better.

Then when it comes to the entree (not even sure if I should call it that), I also took very little. Very intentional with what I want to eat.

A couple of lamb slices, lamb satay, some grilled potato wedges, and half of a duck drumstick. With the exception of the potato wedges,

I did went for a second serving (no photo) consisting of three lamb slices, a few mouthful of fried kway tiao, two dim-sum shrimp dumplings, and two shumai, two slices of extremely salty smoked salmon and two slices of pork pepperoni.

I skip all the carbohydrates in this section. I don’t think it’s such a good idea to be eating so much carbohydrates at a buffet.

Then I went for a bowl of laksa.

The laksa was decent, not terrible or good. Just average.

After that, I took six slices of salmon belly sashimi, and two slices of watermelon and papaya respectively. I spent most of my time chatting with my friends, sharing my thoughts.

Guess what’s the final price?

Each of us pay $56.

I know what you are thinking if you read through all that. It’s a buffet and why the hell am I taking so little? And it’s so expensive!

Each of us adopted a stance with regards to buffets.

One said: I eat all I can
Another said: I eat all I want
Me: I eat all I need

I know what will happen to me if I take a lot and eat a lot. I will feel sick and I will waste food. I don’t want that and I see that happening so often in Singapore. It happened to my first friend. He felt bloated with some discomfort.

People waste food and they take just because they can. In Singapore, we are one of the few nations with the most waste food. This just show Singaporeans in general are pampered, wasteful, and lack gratitude.

After that, my friends and I went to the Apple Store at Orchard Road to shop around. While I’m there, I wanted to buy the AirPods so badly but I walked out of the store empty-handed. Why? Because I knew I don’t need it. I want it just so that I can complete my Apple collection. I also know that completing the collection doesn’t add value to my life. I don’t get any more joy from it then what I already have as I’m grateful for them.

After that, we went to Orchard Central to just walk around and help us with burning some calories before we went to watch the movie, Ninjago.

When the movie started, my friends and I were kind of surprised to see Jackie Chan and we wondered if we entered the right theater. I know Jackie Chan had another movie call The Foreigner and they were both released in Singapore around the same time. We double checked and yes, we are in the right theater. Jackie Chan was simply the narrator.

The movie itself was not that good. I give it maybe a 2.8/5 stars. The first lego movie was good because it was fresh and I don’t have any expectation of it. But as more lego movies are made, the quality dropped. It is just like how companies milk their franchises for more money and the quality just isn’t there anymore. Some examples are companies like Electronic Arts, Ubisoft and Activision milked their respective franchises dry. This is why I decided to stop buying their games all together.

After the movie, we made our way home, dropping by Jurong Point for dinner first. We had ramen but my friends aren’t exactly hungry. For me, I am hungry. Part of it was due to my gastritis.

Now you see? The choices you make even when it comes to food affect the rest of your day.

I also keep nagging at my friends to use payment apps and stop handling cash. Finally one of them installed DBS Paylah, an app developed by DBS Bank for the purpose of it being an e-wallet and uses QR Codes to send or receive payment. It stop the hassle of handling cash. So if you want to go out with me, please go cashless. I don’t handle or process cash unless absolutely necessary.

That’s all for now.

Here I conclude my journal for today.