Belgium, Health, Numbers

Dry February

Last day of Tournée Minérale today. Twenty eight days without a drop of alcohol was not difficult at all. For the entire month of February, I probably craved for a glass of cold beer once. It was a fleeting moment, which I managed to wave away instantly.

I shall continue not drinking if there is no need to do so. Good for health, good for my wallet, good for the environment. Same goes for meat… and it is Lent.

It is literally a dry February in terms of the weather as well. We have not seen much rain in this part of the world. Not good.

Business & Being Creative, Numbers

The Thing About Inflation

I am not buying into the inflation panic that has been going on for months. Most of us are not really affected by it in the short run. Higher food price – consume less. Higher utility bills – use less. New clothes cost too much – wear that outfit which you have only worn twice since you bought it, buy second hand. The majority of us in this part of the world are very wasteful and mostly overweight. Maybe it is time to cut down on our mindless consumptions?

I am also not convinced of the idea of putting most of your earnings in the stock markets, properties or cryptos. What is wrong with traditional (old fashion) financial tools? Without the proper know-how, investing is actually gambling, whereas owning multiple properties comes with a long list of headaches…

On the other hand, strategically placing and diversifying a sum in reliable and insured savings products is like owning an invisible property and receiving rental income from an invisible renter. The best part is, there is no unwanted maintenance costs, no unforeseen people issues, no lame-ass taxes, and high liquidity.

Jibber Jabber, Numbers, Simplify

Cheese Crackers, Endive Soup & Books

I made cheese crackers from some of the parmesan and cheddar cheese that I have in the fridge. These taste good, but next time I shall add more cheese and increase the baking time.

At lunch, I consumed one of my four containers of endive soup. The ingredients in the soup are ‘second growth’ endives, potato, pumpkin and onion. Home-made and healthy…

In the past couple of days, I have been going through and gathering books that I am willing to part with (sell, donate or re-gift) eventually. I already have a pile of a dozen books and have many more to sort through. One can really collect a lot in a decade.

Business & Being Creative, Flashbacks, Numbers, Travels

Fifty Two

My bank in Malaysia has a product called Golden Savers Savings Account. The advertisement goes: Embrace your later years with confidence. Created for senior citizens, retirees and early retirement. For individuals aged 50 and above only.

In Malaysia, I am in the same category as senior citizens. Well, I guess when retirement age is 55 and most of the population do not get to see their 60s, people in their 50s are considered old.

Then there is the US, where the gap between rich and poor is so drastic it is beyond words. The current taxation system tends to sabotage the economy rather than helping it. If things do not change, most working Americans today will probably not get to enjoy their social security when they retire. In this case, they are in the same boat as I. I have a build up of thousands of dollars which I probably do not have the right to receive when I reach the US retirement age of 65. Knowing this however, does not make me regret leaving and crossing the ocean…

My experiences and encounters of living in three countries in the past five decades, allow me to have very different opinions regarding education, work, life, identity, retirement, health, death and what really counts as a good life.

What makes us happy is answered by an article I read not too long ago. But that is another story. Another blog post for another time. 😉

Time to try out the moelleux.

Flashbacks, Jibber Jabber, Numbers

Not Frozen

A week ago, temperature was below zero for days. When I checked on the endive roots which I stored in the garden shed, they looked frozen. To make sure whether these are still okay, I squeezed four roots into the pot of existing growing endives in the utility room, and crossed my fingers! I checked today and there are new growth. So phew… not frozen, not ruined. Today, I planted one extra pot of about ten roots and hope that I will be harvesting beautiful endives in two weeks time.

This afternoon, D and I ran some pre-Christmas errands. We went to buy chocolates, renew a library book, visited the Christmas Market in Kortrijk (was too early), and bought some groceries for the days ahead.

We did our year-end Asian Market groceries yesterday. 🙂

Belgium, Food & Drinks, Numbers

Brussels Waffles

D’s parents found a new recipe for Brussels waffles not long ago. Eager to test out the recipe and to use their very expensive waffle iron, D and I were invited to coffee time yesterday afternoon. And just like that, we spent an entire Sunday afternoon, plus most part of the evening at the parents, eating too many waffles and watching too much TV. 😛

Today, I have three leftover waffles in the refrigerator, and four in the freezer. No food waste here!

Flashbacks, Food & Drinks, Jibber Jabber, Numbers

Jam & Soy Sauce

In 2019, I made jam from the abundance of plums and peaches. Three years later, the majority of those jams are still in storage, plus the ones I made in 2020! Jams are not getting consumed fast enough in this household.

Recently, I experimented with a combination of jam and soy sauce, and used that to marinade a rack of ribs. This turned out to be very good. Even though I am not such a huge meat eater, this jam and soy sauce marinade offers an alternative way for me to consume the home-made jams…

Food & Drinks, Jibber Jabber, Numbers

Half An Apple

A week ago, D’s dad gave me eight apples. Since I still have about five jars of home-made apple sauce in storage, I decided that I will just eat these up. The sayings goes,’An apple a day, keeps the doctor away.’, but I shall only consume half of an apple.

The other half of the daily apple will be placed under the plum tree for the black birds.

Flashbacks, Human Nature, Movies, Books & TV Shows, Numbers

Airport Purchase

Someone was interested in the book ‘The No Asshole Rule’, which I placed on the second-hand website almost two years ago. The person wanted to buy it for half the price I asked. D rolled the ball back to the potential buyer, negotiating for 80% of the asking price, plus sending cost. It was a no go.

There was really no loss on neither side. Potential buyer did not want the book enough to pay for what I asked, and I did not need to part with the book that desperately…

I bought the book at SFO, after a business trip to China. Do not make a book worm wait at an airport for hours, for no good reasons.