Aug 1, 2014

Nostalgia!

So I kinda took a trip down memory lane recently.

Back in the 90s when I was still in primary school, I was fortunate enough to have my own computer and taught myself simple html coding. We did have computer classes in school (I was in Kuen Cheng (1) primary school) but we didn't get to learn much about creating websites. I remember learning by looking at other people's source codes. LOL. The one language I couldn't understand was javascript so I never picked that up but I remember people using javascript to create cool interactive websites. :)

I remember being on mIRC a long time ago before ICQ became popular. However most of my time online was spent on visiting other people's websites especially those who had... CYBER PETS! Yes, we created personal websites and would "adopt" cyber pets, we even had our own little communities. I remember we used Geocities which was one of the most popular places to get a free website, other popular web hosting services were Angelfire and Fortunecity. I loved the concept at the time, it's like house hunting and choosing an address you like. For example, you could go to a Geocities "neighbourhood" like the Enchanted Forest, then a smaller suburb like "Tower", then choose a "lot" or "unit" that was empty.. and it was usually a four digit number.. so you'd end up with a URL like http://geocities.com/EnchantedForest/Tower/8819/

I also remember the editor was text based and not too user friendly. A few years after that they launched a WYSIWYG version of the editor. Can't recall if that happened during the Yahoo!Geocities era or before.

I really wish I had screenshots of my old websites but I think all my diskettes from that era have been thrown away and destroyed. :(

Anyway, I took a trip down memory lane when I random did a search for cyber pets to see if they still do that nowadays. The answer sadly is no since no one creates personal websites anymore. But I did see a lot of familiar cyber pets which I used to have as well and it brought back a lot of fond memories. :)

I'll start off with my fav during that time... Drigus! They were a mystical creature, part dragon, part tiger and part horse. Created by Silvanon, the adoption process was a lot more complex as there were genetic factors that may change the way your drigus would look. You would receive an egg, that after sometime would hatch and grow up to adulthood. The Silver Unicorn pretty much sums up what that era was like for cyber pets and personal websites, we used to write long intriguing stories and allowed visitors to "explore" the website as though they were reading a game book. We created our own little worlds online and for our pets to live in. And I think that was the beginning of UGC (User generated content) as people would create their own creatures/pets/etc to share with everyone else and we would spend hours and hours exploring the fantasy worlds created by each webmaster.

The following screenshots are from The Silver Unicorn (page doesn't exist anymore), the creator's website can be found at: http://www.silvanon.com/


Our pets were not just pets, they had personalities and back stories which we would elaborately craft for them.

Adopters would usually display their pets this way and create a "home" for them on their personal websites.

A lot of the graphics of that time were kinda like pixel art. Either that or hand drawn and scanned into the PC.

Ahh, guestbooks, how I miss you. :)



Dixieland Dragons were also very popular, they had griffons as well.

Unicorn hatchings, animated gifs.

Unicorn family

More unicorns! :)

Senoch were a very popular breed of pets, they even had their own community - The Senoch Circle

Adopt a fluff! There were also dustbunnies you could adopt.

The Hedge Hogs were very very cute animated gifs. From BillyBearsKids.com, back when they actively had these type of adoptable cyber pets.

Yes, you could adopt a lollipop.. and CandyLand Lollipops were pretty popular back then. haha.

And yes, we sometimes even created a whole house/room/garden for our pets! :)


Most adoptable cyberpets were simple static images, at most an animated gif. The only things you could customize were prolly the colours, sex, age. Pets like the Drigus were one of those 100% custom made ones and very hard to obtain. Fun fact: At the time I had permission from Silvanon to create my own little adoption page and adopt out Drigus that I created. :) So yes, lil ol' me at the time actually drew and scanned Drigetti to be adopted by others. hahaha. Of course I wasn't very good at it, as seen in the sample below:

HAHAHA. Yes, as you can see, scanned and coloured in digitally (I think it was a very early version of Photoshop). Found this from one of the links above. I recognized it instantly. I think this was still the early stages, I remember later on getting better at digital colouring (and learnt how to use and abuse the burn+dodge tool). Fun times. :)

So that was my trip down memory lane, I really miss those times. If I'm not mistaken, this all happened around 1997-1999 and I was still in primary school at the time. Of course, I graduated from these to Neopets but that was sometime in 2000 and above I think. :)


♥Di

Jan 20, 2014

Malaysia Truly Asia - The Essence of Asia

It's Visit Malaysia 2014 (VMY2014) and the first official video by Tourism Malaysia was a loooooong video featuring Yuna's version of Malaysia Truly Asia. Her hauntingly beautiful voice suits the video perfectly. Though previous versions of the Malaysia Truly Asia song is a lot more upbeat, somehow I feel more drawn to Yuna's version. The slow tempo makes you listen to the lyrics carefully and what it says tugs at my heartstrings especially with all the discouraging issues that are going on in our country. At the end of the day, Malaysia is home. It's our paradise and there's so much about our country to love.



Malaysia Truly Asia - The Essence of Asia
sung by Yuna

You will love Malaysia now and forever
different races everywhere
the soul of Asia is surely here
this beautiful Malaysia

You will love the colours of Malaysia
where the sun loves to shine
on sandy beaches and clear waters
with smiles of friendly faces

This land is beautiful
it steals your heart away
This land is paradise
only a smile away
The soul of Asia
The essence of Asia
in this land where dreams come true
Malaysia

Malaysia it's truly Asia
People smiling everywhere
showing you how much they care
Welcome to Malaysia

This land is beautiful
it steals your heart away
This land is paradise
only a smile away
The soul of Asia
The essence of Asia
in this land where dreams come true
Malaysia

This land is beautiful
it steals you heart away
This land is paradise
only a smile away
The soul of Asia
The Essence of Asia
It's truly Asia
Malaysia truly Asia



Aug 19, 2013

Emotional roller coaster

So the past few weeks have been an emotional roller coaster. Angel our 11 year old "Queen" of the house has been very very sick. She's always had a bit of cough but this time round she had difficulty breathing. Took her to a vet at Jalan Gasing on a friend's recommendation and after 15 antibiotic shots, she started feeling better and could eat again. She's all skin and bones now because of her breathing problems. :( Vet said it could be a lung infection but decided against doing an x-ray to check her lungs because he was worried she would be too stressed out. After she got better, she started asking for food and so we thought that the worse was over. A few days before Raya, Angel started having flu and was wheezing again. We took her back to the vet and he said it was a common cold.. gave us some meds and we thought it would be fine. On Raya day itself her condition relapsed. She was back to breathing through her mouth, wheezing, coughing and you can hear "crackling" sounds when she breathes. It was painful to watch. The vet was closed for Raya and we didn't know any other vets that can handle her. Angel is the "Queen" of the house for a very good reason. She's very temperamental, can't tolerate the other cats in the house, and gets very aggressive if you try to make her take meds. We used to bring her to an animal clinic/hospital in Taman Segar but they did not know how to handle her. The vets wouldn't dare go near her and they freaking used a cage to pin her down. The vet at Jalan Gasing had a helper who was very skilled at handling Angel with minimal stress. That's how we were able to have her get antibiotic shots the first time. This time round after her relapse, the vet switched to a different antibiotic. However after 3 days we noticed she wasn't getting any better. Thankfully my supervisor suggested bringing her to the Animal Medical Centre in KL. We brought her there and they diagnosed her with severe bronchitis asthma. Her x-ray showed white "donut rings" in the lungs (a sign of inflamed bronchial tubes) and we were told her lungs will never go back to normal. Blood tests showed she was positive for FIP (feline infectious peritonitis) and is a carrier. Needless to say, many tears were shed that day. On the vet's advice, we had her warded and placed in an oxygen chamber. ICU for animals. They also started her on medications to bring down the inflammation. 


The next day when we visited, she looked great. She was gobbling down food, breathing normally through her nose, even the vet said she was getting stable. He told us they would remove her from the oxygen chamber that night and see if she can breathe normal air. The next day, we went to the hospital thinking we would be able to bring her home and continue medications at home. To our surprise, her condition went back to the way it was before. It was truly disheartening and the vet said she wasn't doing too well. She started gasping for air after being taken out of the oxygen chamber. On his advice we left her at the hospital for another night to see if she would get better. That evening we went over to visit her again and found that they put her on drip and she had to wear a cone. It was heartbreaking to see. She still responded to us when we called her, but she was clearly in an uncomfortable state. 


The following day, she still wasn't getting better (gasping for air, teary eyed, looking very weak) but after talking to the vet, we decided to bring her home. Out of all my cats, Angel is the one who is extremely attached to my mom and hates being away from home. We put her in boarding one during CNY and came home to find that she had lost her voice from crying for us every day. We thought the best thing for her was to be in an environment that was most comfortable to her. Once we reached home, Angel started walking around (more like wobbling) and rubbing her body on my leg, on the wall etc. She went to her favourite spots in the house and then rested. Vets gave us medication for 3 days and we knew that he didn't think she would make it. We brought her home on Wednesday and tried "home therapy". Taking care of her round the clock, feeding her meds and diluted food through a syringe (hardest thing to do). On Friday, we decided to purchase an asthma inhaler and pump for her. Just so that it would help her breathe better. We called the hospital up around noon to ask about the inhaler and were told they have it in stock and that we could go pick it up anytime. I went over around 6pm, was told to wait, waited till 7pm only to be told that I could not buy the pump. The receptionist told me that because the pumps are with the vet (it's a very expensive item) and that he had gone home, I had to come back the next day to buy. One of the worse. feelings. ever. I felt so helpless and frustrated, tears were welling up in my eyes. I kept thinking what if tomorrow is too late. What if what if what if. Dejected I went home empty handed. The next morning we went to the hospital to purchase the pump and was told that the vet had indeed saved one for me last night in the store room. Speechless. Seriously. The staff and vet had an earful from my mom after that. 



There's two types of inhalers... one is a steroid and the other a bronchial dilator. 2 doses each, twice a day. The bronchial dilator can be given more often depending on her breathing condition. The pump is called the AeroKat which is meant to be used to administer the inhaler medications. So for the past few days we've been using the pump and inhalers for Angel. Together with meds given by the vet. Not an easy task as Angel will struggle and resist. Thankfully she's doing better than last week. Though it's been one day good, one day not so good. We're praying and hoping for the best but of course we also know that her still being alive is a miracle. It's going to be a long road to recovery but she's a fighter and we're not going to give up on her.


♥Di


May 23, 2013

Happily Ever After Home Contest

If you've been shopping around for your own 'Happily Ever After Home', I'm sure you would know of iProperty.com. Personally I use iProperty.com all the time when checking out new developments. Have to start planning to get my own place now that I'm *cough* older *cough* ;)

Now there's a chance to win RM10,000 cash to kickstart that dream of finding your own home! :D

Contest is open to all Malaysians (above 18) and you just have to submit your details via Facebook and answer a simple question. To increase your chances of winning, you can express your creativity by writing a fairy tale based on any of these (iProperty.com Malaysia's version) stories: Hensem & Gatal, Rafunzel, Red Riding in da Hood and Jack & the Kacang Panjang.

Click HERE for more information about the contest, and click the poster below to go straight to the contest page. :)

Created by Iproperty Malaysia


♥Di

Feb 4, 2013

Bundle Shops

I recently learnt from my dad about "bundle shops" or "kedai bundle" and basically they are vintage or second hand shops... usually specializing in unique vintage items such as shoes, bags, t-shirts, jeans etc. These bundle shops are usually like treasure troves of items sold at a fraction of the original price. I suppose you can consider them thrift shops as well. They often stock vintage branded items and you can haggle/bargain with the shop owners for a better deal. I couldn't find much information online regarding the location of these shops, I tried searching for newer posts (2012 - 2013) about bundle shops as some of these shops close down or relocate within a few years but couldn't find much info. I've been told that there are many around Ampang, Cheras, Chow Kit areas.

So anyway, I decided that I'll make a post with a list of bundle shops whenever I find/stumble upon them. So I'll constantly be updating this post. (hopefully. haha.) There are some online but it's very different from the physical shops.


Bongkar Vintage Wardrobe

We found a bundle shop near our home in Cheras, located in Bandar Sri Permaisuri. Dad found it online but the address given was wrong so we couldn't find the location. My dad happened to chance upon it when he went to a supermarket near Q-Bistro.

There are two floors, filled with men's jeans, shirts, T-shirts, shoes, denim or leather jackets and accessories like leather belts. Items like jeans are usually arranged according to size so it's pretty easy to find what you want. You can try on the jeans/ T-shirts as well. Some of the clothes looked pretty worn out, some looked new. You need to ask if it's original or not as they do have imitation items there. The seller was pretty honest with us about the origins of the clothes and jeans. Saw a bunch of vintage football jerseys too.



Pretty good collection, though I did not go upstairs. Prices are reasonable and affordable... depending on the item. Some vintage hard to find items are priced above RM200. Other stuff like Uniqlo, Lee, Levi's jeans can be bought for RM50 - Rm130. 

Bongkar Vintage Wardrobe
No. 21 & 21-1, Jalan Dwitasik,
Dataran Dwitasik,
Bandar Sri Permaisuri,
56000 Kuala Lumpur.
017-9824297
(Approx. GPS: 3.09951, 101.71284)
Same road as Q-Bistro, opposite the supermarket.


Bonk's Kuala Lumpur

Bonk's is the sister shop of Bongkar... located close by on the same street, just behind Old Town Kopitiam. Bonk's stocks ladies and children items, however in their second floor they stock some men's leather jackets and some winter wear. I found a small brown leather bomber jacket for RM60 (I think) but didn't get it cos I didn't really like the colour.

You have to take off your shoes before entering the premises, it's pretty small compared to Bongkar. The kid's collection is really cute. There are women's jeans, some handbags, travel bags etc. Saw some Rayban sunnies for sale too.

Lacoste shoes, jeans of various brands arranged by size.


There are more jeans and clothes upstairs if you don't find anything suitable downstairs. The staircase is located outside, beside the shop. Not as extensive a collection as Bongkar but still pretty nice. You can use any of the rooms/ closed space as a make shift fitting room to try on the clothes or jeans. Prices range again depends on the item, same as Bongkar and you can haggle for a lower price. :)


Bonk's Kuala Lumpur
No. 51 & 51-1, Jalan Dwitasik,
Dataran Dwitasik,
Bandar Sri Permaisuri,
56000 Kuala Lumpur.
(Approx. GPS: 3.10049, 101.71299)
Behind Old Town Kopitiam


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