Thursday, October 30, 2008

Be like cats

Do you know what I love most about cats?

They don't dwell.

Cats don't have the ability to sit and mope and feel sorry for themselves. Have you noticed that? A cat maybe limping with a sprained joint or a broken bone, but do you see it just sitting there? No, a cat will limp away and get on with its life.

Doremon is one of the siblings whom I brought home from a bus stop in PC. When they first entered our lives, they were about three months old. Doremon was the smallest and had diarrhoea. But he held on and is now a big strapping cat.

He injured his left eye a few months back. I'm not sure what happened but one day he came back, his left eye swollen and had some bloody discharge. Now he has a cloudy eye. Have I ever seen him mope and lose his appetite and just sit there lamenting his luck? Nosirree. Doremon just went on and out running all over the place as if nothing had happened.

Meme is one of the many cats I have rescued from the hospital. When I first met Meme, she was ill and her ears were encrusted with skin infection. It took me about 2 weeks before I could bring Meme home, but I think she was destined to be part of my family.

Meme must have injured her right hindleg at some point. When she sits, her right leg goes out because she has lost the ability to bend it at the joint. When other cats sit with their hindlegs close together, Meme sits in an almost 'terkangkang' manner. But does Meme let that fact hinder her from chasing Che'Ruru and Che'lan all over the place? Noooo, of course not. In fact Meme is one of the fastest sprinter of the lot.

Last week we noticed that Butam had refused to put his right front leg on the ground. He must have sprained it while playing around in the cage. He wanted so much to run around with the other bigger cats but for a few days he could only hobble along on his three good legs. When he was in the cage, I saw him climb into the litter tray and then fell face first unto the sand because his front leg couldn't be used to get his balance.

Like any other cat lover, my heart went out to him but I don't think Butam was feeling sorry for himself.

I wish I could be more like cats.

Monday, October 27, 2008


I am oncall today. The wind is howling relentlessly outside the window. I can hear the raindrops spattering against the glass.

I think about the baby lying in the infant resuscitation room in the labour room downstairs and I begin to weep quietly inside as I have wept openly just now.

I wonder how the parents are doing. I am sure devastation is an understatement. To have waited for 9 months only to have your hopes and dreams shattered in an instant; I cannot even begin to imagine.

I wonder if the infant is feeling pain as he struggles for each breath, increasingly exhausted with every hour that passes.

People perceive doctors as life-savers, miracle-workers even, but the honest truth is we are just God's helpers and at times we are forced to make painful, life-changing decisions such as the one I just did on the little one downstairs whose heart is beating forcefully outside his chest.

The truth is we are just pawns in Mother Nature's game of life, and sometimes she can be a little bit cruel.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Bureng - 4/9/2008 - 22/10/2008

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Mish Mash and everything thrown in

There is a quiet satisfaction seeing all of my Abg's work clothes lined up in the closet all ironed and nice and ready to wear. I've just realised that all his clothes are either tan, white or a shade of blue. Must do something about that.

Cats are getting a new furniture next week. Was browsing through the net when I found this:

Apparently it's a reject item from the online store and they are selling it cheap because it has a defect at the opening of the 'penthouse'. I think normally it would probably be selling about RM70-RM80 but I am getting it for less than RM45 plus postage! What a steal!

III has been redoing their forums and have been busy translating their board titles from English to Malay. Apparently "Preconception, Pregnancy and Postnatal" is "Pratanggapan, Kehamilan dan Post-Natal". They have translated "Repair and Troubleshooting" as "Baiki dan Pencarisilapan".

Hmm. Is PENCARISILAPAN a real word?

Yesterday was masak-masak day. I dragged Abg to the nearest supermarket to get some ingredients and this was the result.

Puding Rainbow Blackmore

26g of powder jelly. Apparently a pack is 13g. The alternative is one packet of 37.5 gram of stringy agar-agar.
8 medium sized eggs.
420g sugar. - The original recipe said this was too sweet so I reduced it to 400g but it was a little too 'tawar' to pass off as a desert so I say, stick to 420g.
130g butter
2 tablespoon custard powder
1 tin of evaporated milk (susu cair, of which Ideal is the most commonly seen brand) - I used the large tin
1350ml of water
1 tsp vanilla
2 tbsp cocoa powder - mix with some water to dilute
Food colouring.

First - boil the agar-agar with the water and sugar. If you think the agar2 is taking a long time to dissolve, don't worry, it will once the mixture has come to a boil. But if there's still some floating around, do sieve them out. Put aside.

Then mix the eggs, custard powder and milk in a bowl.

Add the egg mixture into the boiled agar-agar and bring to boil once more.

Add vanilla and butter. Make sure the butter has dissolved before turning off the heat.

Divide the mix into three. Add the cocoa into one. Put red and green colouring into the other two.

You must work relatively quickly from this point onwards as the agar-agar mix will start to harden.

Take a 9'x9' baking tray (about 3 inch deep) and place one side on a book or something so that it is lying on an incline. The layering is probably best illustrated by the following piccies, courtesy of MakLang from

I used coffee instead of cocoa and the extra sweetness would have been welcomed to counter the bitterness. But it turned out well and for once I now know the exact measurement of water to make my agar-agar!

This is my version.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Musings on a Friday afternoon...

Have you ever wondered that maybe you have chosen the wrong path in life?

Do you ever think that if you had chosen to be something other than what you are today, that maybe you might end up being brilliant at it, rather than just mediocre?

I know that what I am now is based on the choices I made in the past and that nothing I do now can change what has happened before, so I might as well make the best out of it.

I read once in the newspaper while I was studying overseas, about this guy who used to have a high flying job as a lawyer, (I think) or maybe he was a doctor. He made a drastic decision to quit his job and became, a cab driver. He swears that he is much happier now.

Apparently hunky yummy actor Gerard Butler used to be a lawyer but then if anyone is as hunky and yummy as Gerard Butler, I reckon he should be shared anyway.

But I digress - so, the past few days I have been sighing and wallowing in deep thoughts about what I should do with my life. Oh, for the freedom that unending supply of money would give you! I would quit my job and start a cat boarding business, perhaps.


Kitty update

Bureng at two weeks plus.

Bureng yesterday - during the rare times when she is able to sit still.

I love kittens at this stage. They are so curious and so - hoppity. They run all over the place chasing anything big that moves.

They are also learning to pounce and wrestle with each other and sometimes with the other bigger cats too!

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Gone in three days

I went home post call on the second day of Raya greeted by a very sick Che'We. Che'We had been looking under the weather for the past fortnight already and nothing I do seems to be working. I am afterall, limited by the vet services in Kelantan. I hear vets in KL even take bloods for workup.

and on top of that, the black baby also looked a bit 'moyok'.

Che'We was abandoned at our house by Abg's kind cousin. I don't know, maybe she thought I had opened a cat shelter or something.

Che'We during healthier times.

Nevertheless, we took him in. He and Che'Mot became friends as they were the two youngest at that time. I had taken Che'Mot from the hospital's labour room a week or two prior to that.

Che'We and Che'Mot.

Che'Mot had always been the sickly type. Despite giving him the best food and supplements, he never looked well. His belly was always distended and once he got so sick we thought, sure die one lah - but he pulled through and even looked like he was going to live a long prosperous life.

But Che'Mot and Che'We never fully recovered from the flu that all my cats had after I brought Ruru home. They were constantly sniffling and sneezing green snot on the floor and in the cages.


About a week before their deaths, Stokin also became unwell. It didn't help that they were all unvaccinated at that time.

I took black kitty with his sibling and mummy cat from the hospital.

Anyway, Che'We went first. Abg actually thought he was sleeping by the dustbin.

The next morning I found the black kitty all cold on the floor of the cage. I called up the vet assistant and asked her if I could leave Che'Mot and Stokin at her place as I was leaving for KL. I knew Stokin will not last the day if left at home and I didn't want to give up just yet.

However, the next day I got a call saying Stokin had passed away during the night and when I arrived on Monday, she then told me that Che'Mot didn't survive also.

So, that's it - 4 kittens gone in a space of three days.

Knock knock..

Sometimes I think I would make a wonderful housewife.


At times when I am off from work, all I can think of is waking up early in the morning, prepare breakfast for Abg and when he is off, will get down to cleaning and what nots. I was still on leave today and had purposely returned home early as I was already imagining how greasy the kitchen floor is, how haphazardly-arranged my plates are and the smudginess of the glasstop of my dining table.

After arriving home yesterday, I got down to gathering my clothes to be washed and then straightening up the kitchen. The cage which had held my now dead kittens needed to be scrubbed with dettol. It is now sitting in a corner, a sad reminder of the short lives of my 4 kids.

This morning I woke up bright and early (how puzzling it is that I will always wait till the very last minute to wake up on a working day yet have no problem jumping out of bed on my day off?) and cooked fried rice for the hubby, folded the mats outside where the womenfolk were doing 'ketupats' pre Raya, brushed the cement floor and then mopped the living area. I actually took the trouble to move my three seater out of the way so I could mop UNDERNEATH it as opposed to just mopping around it.

My FIL actually had some freshly cooked rice and vege soup for lunch today. and as I am typing this, I am trying to decide whether I should be doing the ironing or make over the wet kitchen with the left over linoleum mats.

Yes, I know. I sound nuts.

But crazy as I sound, there is a satisfaction in seeing my house clean and my floors shining and smelling nice. When I go shopping, I am entranced by all the fancy floor cleaners and latest design of mops and high tech mopping cloth. I bought this mop recently and it has cut the amount of time I used to spend cleaning the kitchen area by half!

Lately I have been wondering if all the hassle at work is worth it. I am fast losing my already scanty faith in the human nature. I had mentioned to a friend recently that there must be something wrong with me that I tolerate my cats better than I tolerate human beings!

It used to be a niggling feeling only but it's been more persistant nowadays, this feeling that I am having. How how how laaaa....?

Thursday, October 02, 2008

My Raya rant

It is official. People here are crazy.

You must be crazy if you waited for 5 days, even drove all the way from the north to the east coast with your child having fever and then came to our casualty along with all the other crazy people and decided to go home when the doctor have advised your child to be admitted and then, decided to come at 12 midnight for admission!

You must be crazy if your child is 10 days old and you claim she has been having fever for the past 10 days yet when we wanted to take some blood, you refused to do so.

You must be crazy if you kept an abscess for four days and then came on the one day when all other clinics are closed for the festivities.

You must be crazy if you have had a headache for 4 days and couldn't sleep yet you came on a public holiday requesting to be admitted.

You must be crazy if you have registered with 30 other patients and you expect to be called within the next 5 mins and when you weren't you kept pestering my staff 'lambat lagi ke?' - yes, we are having a food fest and warm baths inside here instead of running all over the place trying to resuscitate babies and setting lines. Some were even crazier so as to have the balls to come inside and CHECK if there are vacant beds and perhaps we were purposely making you wait.

The theme of the day was children with fever and abdominal pain with loose stool. Yes, if you have been fasting during the day for the past month and then decided that you will gorge yourself with all the variety of food possible, of course your stomach will protest! Aiyohh.....

It is now half 2 in the morning and finally all the crazy people have subsided. For the moment, that is.

Selamat Hari Raya everyone.

p/s: of course by this post I am not calling my patients crazy. It's just my feeble attempt at making light of the situation I am in. Deep down, I really do enjoy having them come after having one week of fever or three weeks of poor oral intake and being dry as Sahara. Seriously.