Events, Flashbacks, Jibber Jabber, Numbers

September Sum Up

More than three weeks ago, I stopped blogging regularly because I needed to prioritize and place my attention elsewhere. Taking a break does not mean stopping completely! So, here is my September summary:

  • 7th: Bought broodjes and cycled to the Gavers with D to have a picnic lunch while enjoying the nature. Went to container park, library, and did grocery in the afternoon. Have barbecue for dinner.
  • 8th: Finally used up the rest of the moss remover on the terrace. The rinsed out container may go into the PMD bag for recycling.
  • 9th: D’s new computer arrived!
  • 10th: Went to Colruyt to stock up the pantry.
  • 11th: Cycled to Hoeve De Kerpel to have a beer. 20km baby! Oh by the way, Bijenhof café had stopped since 30 September 2019.
  • 12th: Open Monumentendag. Met a woman at one of the monuments we visited. She told us interesting stories of her years growing up in the house. I love stories like that.
  • 13th: D’s first day of attending a one year programming course.
  • 14th: Walked to the baker for bread, and then did some promo purchases at Delhaize. The bag of grocery ended up to be rather heavy!
  • 15th: Tidying up and reorganizing the refrigerator and freezer.
  • 16th: Renewed my library membership on Malaysia Day. Because I did not show my ‘ancient’ library card, the process took longer than I expected and was a bit chaotic.
  • 17th: To the library again, this time with D, to get our Covid safe bracelets. After dinner, we used these to attend Prebraderie at the city park.
  • 18th & 19th: Stadsfeest Harelbeke. Music, people, drinking, eating, and late night cycling!
  • 20th: Finished the silicone touch ups in the living room.
  • 21th: Made grape juice.
  • 22nd: Baker and Delhaize walk. Made grilled cheese sandwiches for lunch using grated cheese for the first time.
  • 23rd: Cleaned windows. About time! 😛
  • 24th: Pay Malaysian and Belgian bills.
  • 25th & 26th: Easy going ‘no events’ weekend. I am having sneezing fits. Uh-oh, Covid?!
  • 27th: Made yet another batch of grape juice. Someone besides me needs to be drinking these…
  • 28th: To the baker and Delhaize. Bought leeks because they were on promotion. Said to a woman whom I walked pass on my way home, “Ook voor de prei?“, and dangled my grocery bag in front. 🙂
  • 29th: Sister’s birthday. Sent her a photo of my vase of wind-blown sunflowers and today’s cat trivia. Harvested a cucumber from the vegetable patch and pickled it. Repaired and spray painted a flower pot. Moved a few potted plants indoors.
  • 30th: The last day of September. Did some home projects of dusting off the shelf tops and filling up hairline cracks. Harvested two of my six pears!

Cheers to productive days, memorable events, and exciting changes.

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Flashbacks, Malaysia, Numbers

Nineteen & Thirty

I left my home town, Lahad Datu, when I was nineteen years old to pursue higher education. It was not a pleasant experience but it was necessary.

After returning from the United States and spending half a decade living and working back in Lahad Datu, I took leave again at age thirty. My second departure was less painful. And at the back of my mind, I was aware that I might never return ‘home’ to stay.

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Belgium, Events, Numbers

Sixteen Days

Olympics 2020 in Tokyo has ended. The past 16 days went by unnoticeably fast!

Belgium won seven medals. Not bad for a country which does not invest much in top sports.

Olympics 2024 will be in Paris. I wonder what the world is going to be like by then. Three years is not such a long time from now.

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Food & Drinks, Numbers, Simplify

One Layer Chicken Spring Rolls

I have been wrapping my chicken spring rolls in two layers all these years. The reason being that I do not want them to burst in the hot frying oil. But today, I shall use the biggest wrap I can get and make my spring rolls in one layer. I shall fry one to test out the texture of this small alteration.

A bit of change in method shall be for the better. I find the two-layer spring rolls a bit tough and hard to my liking.

I shall also fold them a little flatter this time. We shall see…

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Belgium, Jibber Jabber, Numbers

Above Twenty Five

The daytime temperatures will be hovering above 25°C this entire week. I shall try not to complain too much about the heat. UV kills germs. Solar energy production will peak. Besides, I have an air cooler, will use ice babies and have many ways to keep D and I cool.

That said, I have done a quick grocery walk this afternoon before the temperature became unbearable. And D mowed the lawn. We are ready.

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Belgium, Flashbacks, Numbers, Travels

At 31…

It was the year 2002.

The year started with my second semester in college, working towards a diploma in graphics design. I was staying with my cousin Eileen in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

My school days were spent learning new skills, making friends and exploring my creativity. Graphics design turned out to be something I was rather good at. At the college art show in November, I won several prizes including The Best of Show with one of my illustration pieces. 🙂

In the summer, I crossed the Atlantic for the first time to visit D in Belgium. My first European trip, and it was wonderful! Later, D and I travelled to San Francisco to visit my sister and get to experience the city together.

The year 2002 was filled with happy school days, new long term friends, and memorable travels.

Two days ago, a 31-year old cyclo-cross cyclist lose her fight to aggressive brain tumour. Rest in peace, Jolien.

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Belgium, Health, Numbers

Antibodies

I was vaccinated exactly two weeks ago. By now, my body should have built up the necessary amount of Covid-19 antibodies. The vaccine side effects had been mild and tolerable. I cannot say the same about my seasonal grass pollen allergy…

Aside from the sense of relief, I am also glad that I have taken the needed steps to not get infected. I would have been extremely unhappy if I have to deal with losing my sense of smell and taste. And I definitely cannot afford to have brain fogs or any neurological issues.

Vaccinated or not, we still have to be cautious and not let our guards down completely. The virus is still circulating among us, and there is the very real threat of the Delta variant. Masks, hygiene and social distancing will still be the norms we all have to adhere to for a while.

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Health, Numbers

Probability

Probability is the branch of mathematics concerning numerical descriptions of how likely an event is to occur, or how likely it is that a proposition is true. The probability of an event is a number between 0 and 1, where, roughly speaking, 0 indicates impossibility of the event and 1 indicates certainty. ~ Wikipedia

We have been living in a Covid-19 world for more than a year now. Currently, the probability of getting infected is much lower compared to twelve months ago, because we have come to understand the virus a little bit better. However, this probability value can be volatile. Infections (reinfections), hospitalizations and deaths can still go up again if variants manage to simmer into deadlier more infectious forms. All it takes is for this killer variant to hop on its seven billion potential hosts and wreak havoc at every corner of Earth.

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Business & Creativity, Numbers

Crisis To Crisis

The world had wallowed through one crisis to the next in the past decade. And just when some of us are starting to recover from the financial crisis of 2008, we are savagely plunged into another one – a pandemic, this time – a global health crisis.

Because no one on Earth knows how long this crisis will last, D had decided to pause his eight-year-old, one-man design business when the first lock down was enforced last year. A typical small business needs about ten years to turn around. But heck, try doing that from one crisis to the next!

Taking a pause was a strategic move. Keeping our heads above the water is the smart thing to do. Staying alive is the logic step. Only then do we have a future. A future of plans, actions, results, progress and hope.

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Jibber Jabber, Numbers

One Third Filled

Today, the polyester tub we are using for the pond is lowered into position. After making sure that it is sitting nicely on a bed of levelled sand, D and I filled a third of the tub with tap water. At this moment, we are leaving it for a day so that the tub may stabilize in place. I hope that there will not be too much shifting in the next 24 hours. Tomorrow, D and I will set the tub into position by filling the four sides with sand. We will also be filling the tub completely to the brim. The objective is to have a water pond by the end of the day tomorrow. Fingers crossed!

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