Saturday, August 22, 2009

The IKEA Moving-Out Sale in USJ... and down memory lane

SORRY if you were duped by the heading :P. First of all, IKEA is NOT moving out from its current premises. Secondly, IKEA is in Mutiara Damansara and there has never been one in USJ... hehe!

Why the misleading heading then? you might ask.

Well, I'm going away and while itemizing my things for sale, found out that I have quite a number of IKEA stuff. So, I came-up with my own mini IKEA catalogue for my colleagues to browse through...

I was first 'introduced' to IKEA by my hubby (then, fiance)in 1996 and immediately fell head over heels in love with it (and also with the person who introduced 'us'... hehe). Those days, the store was still in One Utama. It was (and still is) my favourite store. Friday afternoon breaks would be spent hanging around the place. Sometimes I bought something, other times, it's just browsing through the wares and the various interiors, and making a mental note of the decorating ideas and calculating how much I would have to spend to buy some of the items! A retractable measuring tape would always be tucked in one corner of my handbag together with all the junk that weigh the bag down (the paper tapes provided by the store are too flimsy for my liking and are best left for the amateurs... ahem)

VENI VIDI VICI (I came, I saw, I conquer) - Julius Caeser
My version: I went, I saw, I measured, I bought, I took it back flatpacked, I installed it myself! :P

Yup! I did it all by myself: from the Gabriel racks to that bulky Hemnes loft bed. Thanks to the handyman genes that I inherited from my dad. That was one of the reasons why I LURVE IKEA stuff - the satisfaction of installing those things yourself - only DIY buffs will know the feeling...

My comments regarding the furniture? Well, 3 items which I bought was damaged in no time (thanks to the maid), but am satisfied with the rest. While I'm selling most of my furniture (some VERY reluctantly), I'm keeping a few like these Billy bookcases...

Well, IKEA and I have come a looong way. My greatest IKEA 'achievement'? Sleeping in IKEA with my hubby! Serious! By a stroke of luck, we participated in the first ever "IKEA Sleepover" in One Utama back in 1998. So there we were (and 30-odd couples and families) in our pyjamas (that was the rule), being entertained by Yasmin Yusoff and Buddy Loren, partied away till midnite, and later slept on our chosen beds. We were served Swedish breakfast the next morning before going back with our prizes. And ... the whole thing was telescast on TV3! Tak percaya ke? Well, I'll have to rummage my trunk for that newspaper cutting and certificate that we got :P

As much as I love my IKEA stuff, I'll have to sell 'em all before the family moves to Bristol.

"Tak sedih ke jual semua barang2 tu?" they asked.
"Tak, nanti boleh beli lagi.." I just grinned.

God is indeed Great.

I won't miss my furniture and my IKEA 'friend' because there's an IKEA store in Bristol! Yeayyy!!!!

(... and Ingvar Kamprad is laughing all the way to the bank...:))

Saturday, August 8, 2009

The Human Touch

As I lie awake, my sick son tossing and turning on his side of the bed, I grimly recalled what happened at the clinic a few hours ago.

Me : Hi, Doctor.
Doctor : Hmm? (Doctor's voice muffled by his mask)
Me : He's got sore throat, fever and cough.
Doctor : (checked the son's temperature). Open your mouth (shoving that big "ice-cream stick" down the son's throat).
Doctor : Got a fever, bathe him when you go back; drink lots of water, no spicy food; I'll give him bla bla bla.
Me : So, how do I know that this is just normal fever and not something else?
Doctor : Well... we'll never know if its H1N1. If he has breathing difficulties, take him to the hospital.

...and with that, we were out of his room.

"So what's the fuss about?" you might ask.
"That's how doctors are", you point out.
"They have so many patients waiting", you reason.
"Don't expect them to treat you like a primadonna", you finally say, rolling your eyes.

Never thought I'd say this but... I miss my doctor!

It's true what people say, you'll never know how important somebody is in your life until he / she is gone. My family doctor passed away in June, and I only found out last month. If I hadn't fallen sick then, I would never have known at all. In fact, if the locum had not charged me exorbitantly, I wouldn't have even asked the nurse where my favourite doctor was!

Me : Where's Dr. Nagesh?
Elderly Nurse : (mumbled something without looking at me).
Me : Sorry?
Elderly Nurse : (looking at me as if I was dumb) She passed away.
Me : What?! Oh My God! When?!
Elderly Nurse : (looking at me as if she wanted to kill me :P) June.
Favourite Nurse : I thought you knew...
Me : (How was I supposed to know? You still have her name on the wall! Hello?!) What's the cause?
Favourite Nurse : Heart attack...

I always tell my husband that she worked too hard. Everytime I go to the clinic - morning, afternoon, evening, Saturdays even - she'd be there. But although she worked round the clock, she never failed to give her patients what was most important - the human touch.

Ever the exemplary doctor, you'd never get a "hmm?" or "huh?" when you enter her room. It's always exchanging pleasantries, first ("small talk", I always tell my students :)).
"How are you? It's been a while since I saw you." she would gush, flashing a sweet smile.
Then we'd talk about the kids and my husband. Oh yes! She's his favourite doctor, too. Being a health freak, hubby would regularly do his blood test to check his cholestrol level and what not. Then, they'd spend hours talking about supplementary and all that stuff. Hubby always said that she was overly concerned about his cholestrol level inspite of the good test results. But I guess, he liked the attention :) ...

She's a hit with with the kids too, cooing gently to them and of course, those vitamins at the end of the consultations made her their favourite doctor.
"Who's going to make me well?" wailed the daughter when I told her the sad news. Er, that was a bit drama-queeny on her part....

As for me, it's her concern that won me over. I remembered when the maid ran away with her boyfriend, Dr. Nagesh sympathetically offered me and hubby MCs. I can attest, however, that we were really unfit to work that day. Hubby's blood pressure shot up and I had a headache. (Who wouldn't? BTW the maid is back working for my niece. God is great!). Truth is, she was very 'stingy' with her MCs - I would only get MC if I had fever. However, she told us then, that these things happen and that was the least that she could do to help out.
Now you know why she's our favourite doctor?

Well, life must go on, with or without the doctor. I'm sure she's in a good place somewhere. As for me, it's going to be a LONG night...