31 July 2007

Powerful Dreams

Powerful dreams become magnets to pull you into the future. -Jim Rohn-

If you want to get anywhere in life, you'd better be having powerful dreams and start setting strong goals.

Here's a thought to help us all along our ways to wherever we want to get in life - "Why?"

What's your why? What's your reason for doing what you did yesterday, what you're doing today, and what you'll be doing tomorrow? If you have a strong why, you'll go places!

Start thinking. Start dreaming!

23 July 2007

Plant The Seed

Less than 24 hours till our Kinabalu adventure begins. Are you excited? I sure am!

My first Herbalife Extravaganza experience… truly U.N.B.E.L.I.E.V.A.B.L.E.!

The Herbalife Asia Pacific Extravaganza 2007 was held last weekend in Singapore. What’s the event about you ask? Allow me to share my experience with you, in my own words.

Let’s start with my “why”. My reasons were really simple - curiosity. How could one event, which happens every year, get this wonderful bunch of positively crazy people so excited? Why were they promoting it like crazy? Why were people from all over the world flying thousands of miles to be a part of it? What was it about this event that could make grown men cry? Long story short, I wanted to find out first hand what these people were so excited about.

And so I bought my ticket and went. And now I have seen it for myself. Now I know. Now I understand.

However, there’s no way I can communicate the impact an event of this caliber has on a participant. It is simply something you have to experience for yourself. And you can believe me on this, you will return the same as I have – changed.

Things I learnt this last weekend:

Life is not designed to give us what we need. But it is designed to give us what we deserve. So when you expect something in your life, be sure that you deserve it.

A man approached a gardener and complimented – “God & you have grown a magnificent garden”. To which the gardener thought for a moment and agreed that without the sunshine and the rain given by God, this magnificent garden just could not have been. Then the gardener replied to the man “Yes, but you should have seen the garden when God had it all to himself”.

Lesson to those who are religious: It is God’s doing that makes a tiny seed grow into a wondrous tree. But it’s your job to plant the seed first. If you want the tree, make sure you deserve the tree. Plant the seed!

16,000+ people with the same purpose, under one roof – hard to imagine. Seeing 16,000+ people with the same purpose, under one roof – hard to believe. And the energy - indescribable.

The most important thing I’ve learnt is that even the craziest dreams do come through. Plant the seed! Dream it. Do it.

20 July 2007

A Bad Day

I was out visiting customers in the company Wira on Monday. Some guy driving a small truck ran into me from behind. Shit I didn’t see it coming so didn’t get a chance to brace myself. The safety belt + inertia effect from impact caused my neck to whiplash, and it’s pretty sore even now, 4 days later. Had the senses knocked right out of me. Struggled to move the car to the side of the road and sat on the curb for a moment to gather myself.

The culprit even had the cheek to say that I was at fault for braking. WTF?!?!?! So instead of braking to a halt, I should just ram the car in front of me, like he did? Super-$oH@i betul! The next couple of hours were spent at the SJ police station waiting for one of the sergeants to get to my case. Boy was it crowded that day. Guess I wasn’t the only one having a bad day.

By the time I was through it was already 6pm. I rushed back to office to find that everyone had already locked up and left. The problem here was that my office keys were attached to my house keys in my own car; and my car keys were in my desk drawer in the office. Imagine that - big problem! The manager whose car I crashed was kind enough to drive me home. Waited in the porch till mom returned with her set of house keys.

After settling the KEYS issue and getting my car back, I went to SY’s place for a night dip in the pool with SY & Robert. We only managed to do 5 laps before the drizzle arrived. Since it was still early, we headed to the shower room and spent some time in the sauna. Here’s where it gets interesting. AP (read Attitude Problem) boys in the sauna... of course AP things were bound to happen. “Low, medium or high?”. To which we answered “Low first”. And so Robert added a bit of water to that watcha-call-it thingy and we could almost immediately feel the heat increase, but only for a brief moment.

The next round, we went medium, filling a little more water into the bucket and pouring it in. Gosh were we feeling the intensity of the heat. I couldn’t tell if the water droplets forming on my semi naked body were from the steam or my sweat. I believe the temperature rose high enough to give us a heat stroke. But Robert just wouldn’t let us off easily, threatening to label “Chicken Shit” to the first person who bails out.

Of course we stayed and continued challenging each other to take it to the next level – high! I vaguely remember anything after SY added a shit load of water. What I do remember is the burning sensation all over. The air was so hot and humid that we could feel the burn inside our throats with every breath we took. Robert was the first to bail out. CHICKEN SHIT! Hahahaha!

Today I’m sick because of that nonsense we pulled.... right before I leave for Singapore tonight, and my Mt Kinabalu climb next Tuesday. God bless me!


Here's an interesting story I got through forwarded emails...

A young lady was waiting for her flight in the boarding room of a big airport. As she would need to wait many hours, she decided to buy a book to spend her time. She also bought a packet of cookies.

She sat down in an armchair in the VIP room of the airport to rest and read in peace. Beside the armchair where the packet of cookies lay, a man sat down in the next seat, opened his magazine and started reading.

When she took out the first cookie, the man took one also. She felt irritated but said nothing. She just thought: “What nerve! If I was in the mood I would punch him for daring!”

For each cookie she took, the man took one too. This was infuriating her but she didn’t want to cause a scene.

When only one cookie remained, she thought: “Ah… what will he do now?”

Then the man taking the last cookie divided it into half, giving her one half.

Ah! That was too much! She was much too angry now. In a huff, she took her book, her things and stormed to board the plane.

When she sat down in her seat inside the plane, she looked into her purse to take out her eyeglasses and to her surprise, her packet of cookies was there, untouched, unopened.

She felt so ashamed. She realized that she was wrong. She had forgotten that her cookies were kept in her purse.

The man had divided his cookies with her without feeling angered or bitter, while she had been very angry thinking that she was dividing her cookies with him. And now there was neither the chance to explain herself nor to apologize.

Important lesson: Cookies are evil creatures which escaped from the gates of hell to our world to cause havoc and misunderstanding. Stay away from them!

17 July 2007

Hiking @ Gasing

Soon Yean and I spent Sunday morning hiking Gasing Hill in PJ. The initial plan to start at 7.30am failed, as expected. We only reached the entrance at 8.45am.

The place was more crowded than I remember it to be. People of all ages were there for their walk, and it seemed like they were mostly seasoned patrons of the hill, confidently choosing their preferred route at each fork in the trail. Soon Yean and I were as lost as any first-timer would be. With no directions, each time we hit a fork in the trail we would simply pick the one which looks tougher since our goal was to improve our endurance.

I was an idiot for coming in my Japanese-style beach slippers. I was thinking I want to get my feet wet at the stream. We didn’t find a place convenient for wetting my feet. Slippers for hiking – a definite NO-NO!

It was really nice to greet and be greeted “Good morning” with a smile each time we passed fellow hikers. That really adds to the experience. I’m sure you know it’s quite hard to find such stranger-to-stranger courtesy here in Malaysia.

I must admit two things.
1) Soon Yean was able to keep up with me without water or rest for the duration of our hike. He even managed to step up the pace as we jogged the quiet part of the uphill-downhill trail. And he did not complain. I am impressed and I’m looking forward to reach the top of Kinabalu with him.

2) I’ve come to realize that I’m not as prepared for Kinabalu as I thought I was. The uphill-downhill-uphill-downhill pattern really pushed my endurance. It took a great deal of effort to maintain my ‘brisk walk’ pace as we climbed the steep and uneven hill. It took just as much effort to maintain a steady pace as we raced down just as uneven slopes pulled by gravity.

Our 1h15m journey was quite enough challenge to knock me out cold that Sunday morning. I slept the rest of the morning and even missed lunch. I expect our Kinabalu challenge to be at a much slower pace. However, we will have added weight on our backs. It’s hard to imagine how things will go as we make this highly anticipated journey to the highest peak in Malaysia.

12 July 2007

Random Thought: Wii

I’ve come across the term “Wii” a number of times before. Today as I was once again distracted from work, I decided to look it up.

Talk about new-age gaming. Gone are the days when we used to play Super Mario Brothers on 1st generation Nintendo game consoles, sitting on the floor right in front of the TV with the legs crossed.

So who’s going to be the first among my wonderful friends to buy a Wii? I don’t mind being a victim of your endless gloating, if you let me try it out.

11 July 2007

Reaching The Top

This post is dedicated to Soon Yean

I recently learnt that success starts with a dream. When coupled with direction, the dream becomes a vision. Sprinkle in lots of determination and anyone can make their visions come true.

To be on top of the world with my closest buddies – that’s the dream which has become my vision. We’ll be climbing Mt Kinabalu in 2 weeks time. The peak is 4.1km above sea level, so as you can imagine, it's going to be a challenge for us.

3 of the 4 setting out on this challenge are in pretty good shape and I have no doubt that we’ll reach the top. But if 4 really great friends set out on this journey, I want to be at the top with all of them by my side. I want to say we did it, and we did it together. As Lilo & Stitch so put it – “…no one gets left behind”.

Yea, I’m talking about Soon Yean. He’s not in the best shape possible and I’m worried that it’ll be a lot more challenging for him to conquer the mountain. Two weeks isn’t quite enough time for him to improve his weight, strength and stamina, especially with his working schedule. However, here’s a guy who has many great things working in his favor. He’s got more than enough brains and character to make up for what he lacks in physique. That I do not doubt. If anyone can get to the top of Mount Kinabalu on just sheer determination, I know Soon Yean can.

So here’s my humble request to all BeingMervs’ dearest readers – help me help him. He has already acknowledged his current health and fitness level (read here). We need to get his spirits up. Visit his blog and leave him some words of encouragement. Flood his blog with comments if you think it’ll help.

If we fail to get his body in any better shape in the next two weeks, at least he will have enough mental energy and motivation to get to the top with the rest of us.

09 July 2007

Quarter Century Surprise

It’s official. Mervs turns a quarter century old today. Here’s how it was celebrated.

As mentioned in the last post, it was going to be a very busy weekend. And having my birthday fall on a Monday, I didn’t think it was convenient at all to plan any sort of celebration and that at the very most, it’ll be dinner with either family or friends tonight. Boy was I ever wrong.

On Saturday I was scheduled to accompany Joanne for her friends’ wedding (congratulations to Sherman & Kristy). It was an interesting wedding dinner held at Sime Darby Convention Center at Bukit Kiara. They even had a lion dance troupe performing. Unfortunately, due to certain unforeseen circumstances (unforeseen by me only actually), I did not get a chance to meet the bride and groom to congratulate them.

What I mean by “unforeseen circumstances” – Joanne schemingly asked me to go down to the car park to pick up a paper bag of stuff for the bride’s sister. Of course being me, off I went without a second thought to it. The instructions – brown paper bag in the trunk of the car.

As I got down to the car, my mind was distracted by the sight of a scratch on the very recently sprayed bumper. Unknown to me, I was about to be jumped by a bunch of friendlies hiding between some of the other parked cars.

I opened the boot and the first thing I saw was a chocolate cake sitting there with the unlit candle in it. Duh me… it still didn’t hit me as my eyes scanned the car for the brown paper bag I was supposed to fetch for Joanne. Suddenly Robert, Soon Yean, Zetuan and 2 Elaines jumped up from hiding yelling “Surprise!!! Happy Birthday!!!”.

I literally froze in shock. Period. And I can only imagine my own look – jaw hanging half open with half a smile across the face.

It still took another moment before I pieced it together – “so that’s why the cake was there”. I was thinking the cake was for later or something, and I had driven the car all the way there from home with the cake displayed so nicely in the boot. Silly me. Actually the guys were given a spare key and they placed the cake in there right before I was sent to the car.

When Joanne finally joined us in the heat of the car park, she broke the news to me… there’s more. My evening at the wedding dinner had come to an abrupt end and we would be continuing the evening at Mont Kiara. I trailed Soon Yean’s car to Somo, the relatively new chill-out place I hadn’t yet visited. I seriously didn’t expected to see so many familiar faces sitting there waiting to celebrate with me.

In no particular order
Soon Yean
Sau Yan
Annette & Alex
Jane & Seong Min
Lynn & Jeng
Daryan & Ren Lee
Kenny & Foon Yee
Zetuan & Elaine
Teck Liet
Jason & Tomo
Dennis & Sonia
June, Shirley & Jason

I hope I got everyone in there. If I left out anybody’s name, I blame the alcohol. Courtesy of Zetuan, I was really tipsy within the first 15 minutes of reaching Somo. I remember drinking 3 different shots of I-don’t-know-what (burnt my lip too), one after the other followed by a mug of beer to wash it all down and mess me all up. If any of you have any idea what was in the shots, please enlighten me.

For the record, I have never had a surprise birthday party thrown in my name. I’m deeply honored & touched that you guys were someway, somehow a part of it.

Also thank you Grace, Jessie & Chee How for your wishes. Sorry you guys couldn’t make it but glad you called/messaged that night.

And to the culprit Joanne, I never saw it coming. Thank you so very much. Love you lots!

Up to now, I’ve also received wishes via SMS from Shona in AU & June who couldn’t make it on Saturday, e-cards from Lynn & Irene, and Robert wished me on his blog. Thank you all!

I know this post is very long and unexciting. I’m waiting for Soon Yean to give me some pictures and the video of the surprise.

04 July 2007

Random Thought: Bukit Gasing PJ

A random conversation during lunch today brought back some memories from some years ago – an activity with the Leos brought me to Gasing Hill in PJ for a morning hike through the small forest reserve.

There were many people who frequented the place. It was quite obvious because they seemed to know their way around so well, like the back of their palms. For those who haven’t been there, the trails are literally dirt trails, with muddy puddles here and there, and tree roots creeping across the paths. Actually, the only reason those trails exist is because many people tread them daily. There were neither staircases nor pavements as I recall; no signs or maps. I hear it gets really crowded now, especially on weekends.

My most distinct memory from Gasing Hill was watching a pair of golden retrievers play in the stream towards the end of the trail, under the watchful eyes of their owners. It was just so pleasing to watch these adult-sized dogs play around in the water like little puppies. It was enough to make me feel like a kid again. I want to go back there this weekend, hoping to catch a glimpse of something similar. This will be my birthday present from me to me this year.

I’ll be going on Saturday morning. Those interested are welcome to join me.

02 July 2007

2007: Review of Q2

Strange… the first half of 2007 passed just like that. Well actually it didn’t pass just like that. A lot happened in the last 6 months. But hell… I didn’t realize H1’2007 was already over. I previously posted a summary of Q1 here. As with tradition, let’s do a recap about yours-truly’s past quarter.

While most people out there are still struggling to make a living, I’ve decided to start work on making a fortune instead. It’s so exciting you wouldn’t believe it. What makes it so much better is that it’s not one of those get rich quick schemes. Hard work, lots of determination and a fair amount of time is required, but I know it’s real and I know I’m going to make it. Just you wait and see!

I’m now a PADI Certified Advanced Open Water Diver. Clocked 18 dives to date (10 so far this year), including 3 night dives which were simply amazing. If you think diving during the day is fun & exciting, wait till you try night diving. It’s an entirely different experience. When all your attention is focused on the scope of your flashlight, you tend to notice more which you would probably have missed in daylight. And also there’s a hint of mystery in the waters when you’re surrounded by darkness in an environment you’re not entirely used to. Truly something you have to experience for yourself. Next dive – end September. Next certification – Rescue Diver, early 2008.

I have achieved my targeted weight range I set for this year, and I’ve maintained it throughout Q2. Time to up that target – 65kgs by end Q3. I’m determined to gain more lean weight than fat. Will start planning my exercise regimen immediately.

My relationship with Joanne has developed very well. Although we’ve only been together for awhile, we’ve grown so attached that people find it hard to believe how fresh our relationship is. It’s something we’re really proud of and I can only see it getting better.

I’ve met a bunch of bloggers outside my circle of friends who are now followers of BeingMervs too. (Would really love to meet up with you guys again soon!)

Planned for H2’2007 in no particular order:
- Stand atop the highest peak of Malaysia
- Herbalife GET Team
- Decently visible 6-pack abs
- Achieve and maintain 65kgs weight
- Hepatitis B vaccination
- Project Aware
- Parents 30th Anniversary planned and paid for by their 3 kids
- Herbalife Asia Pacific Extravaganza
- Have a side income equivalent to or more than my full-time income, then fire my boss

Just want to take this opportunity to say a big thank you to all of you who follow BeingMervs. I love the comments you guys are leaving because it makes blogging a lot more meaningful to get to interact with you. I’ve always believed in 2-way communication.

A lot of tagging has been going around in the world of blogging. Here’s something new to try – I want to tag the following bloggers to recap their first half of 2007: