Wednesday, January 18, 2017
The primary cause of unhappiness is never the situation but your thoughts about it
No, this is not going to be another rant about cars parking outside my house. It doesn't bother me as much as it used to anymore.
The cars that you see outside both sides of the road does not belong to the homeowners of the two corner lots. Neighbours just come and park their cars outside, and as it is a public road, they have the right to do so.
Today, as my car was coming out of the gate, I just turn to my my left and drove down the road. It was like driving down the highway. There's no obstruction down that path.
Come to think of it, the cars parked on both sides of the road is like having a road hump of sort so motorists can't speed, which is a good thing, right?
And the road is still wide enough for a four wheel drive to go through. Even for a school bus!
I'm also practising Ho'oponopono now where all you need to say is "I love you. I'm sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you". You can say the words silently in your heart or you can say them out loud. It's like a delete button where you erase all the unpleasant data from your memory just by saying these phrases.
Something like that. I've tried the ancient practice, and I found that it works.
You start to see things in a different light, and life seems to flow smoothly. Of course, not every moment is going to be magical. There will be days where there will be bumpy rides, but continue to practise Ho'oponopono whenever you can. It brings health, wealth and happiness.
Saturday, January 14, 2017
|pic sourced from Facebook|
I hope the elderly man (pictured) is going through the rubbish because he wants to separate the recyclables from the other trash, spurred by his love for the planet.
Imagine a future where the growing grey-haired population will have to depend on a smaller working population. This will lead to the public having to bear with the rising cost of healthcare and social welfare, which will be followed by a hike in taxes.
With the current number of 14.5 million working Malaysians in the country and 89 per cent earning less than RM5,000 a month, only 6.7 million are active EPF contributors. Of these, only 22 per cent have saved enough for retirement to sustain for 20 years. - source Don't Depend On Just Your EPF To Survive In Old Age
I used to say: "Save so much for what? May not be around for long after retirement", and my friend's swift reply was "What if you survive for another 10 to 15 years?"
According to EPF, RM196,800 is the minimum amount needed for retirement, and the monthly spending must not exceed RM820 for 20 years.
And there must not be any outstanding housing and car loans when you retire. Pray also that you have good health in the twilight years.
I asked a friend yesterday how is he planning for his retirement. He is 36 years old. His reply was: "I don't even know if my salary is coming in or not end of the month. How to think about retirement planning?"
Many people are also living from pay cheque to pay cheque with very little money left for savings.
I have insurance, some say. But insurance won't pay for the wheelchair, the transportation charges, the parking fee. Try parking your car at a public hospital for one whole day and the cost may be higher than the medical fee.
For those who still think insurance can take care of everything, read this sad story Cerita Duka Sebelum Kematian which appeared in a local Malay daily.
Insurance is important but you still need cash.
Cultivate a culture of saving money and don't depend only on EPF savings.
Wednesday, January 11, 2017
Since Sinchew Daily already broke the news today, I guess it's official.
The local daily reported that a China-based developer through a Singaporean company, wants to buy over the land to build a luxury condominium and shopping mall.
A meeting was held with the residents of Kim Teng Park, Johor Bahru, and a draft of the contract will be handed over to the residents on January 25. After that, residents will have three weeks to decide whether they accept the offer.
Residents were tight-lipped about the offer, when they were contacted before the meeting. The developer was believed to have told the residents not to talk to the Press about it, or the deal would be off.
Kim Teng Park was in the news last year over land acquisition matters.
Policy Makers Decision Makers
Tuesday, January 10, 2017
Residents of Kim Teng Park, one of the oldest housing estates in Johor Baru, want the authorities to take action against those who park haphazardly in the neighbourhood.
Many residents and shop owners say the situation inconveniences them.
A. SHAHJAHAN, 50, who operates a convenience store at Jalan Storey says motorists occupy all the parking lots as well as un-demarcated parking spaces.
“The motorists are mostly working in Singapore, either in day shift or nightshift. Some motorists ignore all traffic rules such as parking in front of the fire hydrant and the Tenaga Nasional Bhd station,” he says, adding that traffic police and enforcement officers from the local authority are turning a blind eye to such offences.
“It’s not that we do not have empathy for people who work in Singapore, but their convenience should not inconvenience others, especially the residents,” Eugene says.
Flower pots, concrete slabs and bricks are seen placed on the road outside some houses to prevent motorists from parking indiscriminately.
Another resident, ANNE KANG, 52, who has a towing sign outside her house, says some motorists even remove the pots and slabs and defiantly park their vehicles.
“There’s a carpark in front of the Custom and Immigration Quarantine Complex at Sultan Iskandar Building, but people still choose to park in our neighbourhood,” she laments.
Johor traffic police chief Superintendent Baharudin Mat Taib says police are always working together with the Johor Baru City Council (MBJB) to tow away vehicles that violate traffic regulations.
However, he says, the reality was that there were insufficient parking spaces for motorists in areas near the Sultan Iskandar Building (which houses the Customs, Immigration and Quarantine Complex) before heading to Singapore.
“Even the licensed car parks are full. So the motorists have no choice but to park in nearby neighbourhoods and around the city centre.
“Even the MBJB compound for towed cars have run out of space,” he says, adding that they will visit the residential area from time to time.
Sunday, January 8, 2017
|A drop gate at one of the access roads to Taman Majidee Park|
Resident Associations' heads and members have come out to defend their actions after their move to close some of the access roads to their tamans in Johor Baru was highlighted in ActionLine.
On why they had permanently closed the roads and not install drop gates was because of the overhead costs, as the residents would need to fork out more money to hire security guards to man the gantry.
One resident said the residents' safety and peace of mind, and that of their loved ones was more important than that of road users who do not live in the neighbourhood which used to be crime-ridden before some of the access roads were sealed off.
One taman --- Serene Park --- which is yet to become gated but is on its way to becoming one, has as many as 9 access roads. The resident association of Serene Park is proposing to close at least half of it. Besides crime, the neighbourhood is also infested with cars belonging to people who work in Singapore who park in Serene Park before going across the Causeway to work.
I wrote a little bit about Serene Park here.
On the one hand, we have people going to the MCA Complaints Bureau saying there shouldn't be a permanent gate put up to seal off an access road as the development was planned for connectivity. On the other hand, we have people going to Umno office saying that putting up fences has strengthened ties among those living in the neighbourhood and it has also brought about zero crime rate.
A real dilemma, this one. More on the resident associations' reaction in an upcoming post. Meanwhile, relax and de-stress with a game of crosswords, puzzles or chess.
Monday, January 2, 2017
Gated access roads a bane of motorists
About 5 months ago, three old housing estates in Johor Baru were turned into "gated" communities forcing motorists who had been using the inner roads to get to their destination to take a longer route.
The motorists blamed residents of Taman Kebun Teh, Taman Majidee and Taman Melodies for not seeking approval from the Johor Baru City Council (MBJB), causing hardship to others.
Johor Baru MCA complaints bureau chairman John Cheah said it would not have been a big problem if a drop gate or gantry system was used at these access roads instead the permanent gates that are often closed and locked at most times.
"We understand the residents have been plagued by robberies and thefts but this is not acceptable as every housing estate had been carefully planned by town planners before the housing project was developed.
"The roads belong to the state for fire engines and ambulances to access places in the shortest possible time," he says.
This was however disputed by residents in the three housing estates.
Tan, of Taman Majidee, says there had been break-ins before the gates were installed.
"I can now sleep better knowing that the area I live in is now gated and guarded. A little bit of inconvenience brings great peace of mind," he says.
ACTIONLINE: MBJB will meet with the respective resident committees to solve the problem.
Public relations officer Mohd Firdaus Abdul Hamid says the local council had received similar complaints and will come up with a decision that benefits everyone.
Motorists who had been using the inner roads are advised to adhere to the traffic flow while the council works out a plan.
The newly-revamped NST now has an actionline.
Thursday, December 29, 2016
I'm starting the gratitude jar project for 2017.
What I'm going to do is to write down every memorable moment or a good deed --- something to be thankful for or "What have I done today to make someone's life better?" ---- on a piece of paper and drop it into the jar.
By the end of the year, I'll look at all the pieces of paper as I review my 2017 at the end of the year.
The Gratitude Jar concept isn't something new. I think it'll be a great way to start the year with hope and love.
Maybe I can call my project "Jar of Merits". Things like having a great meal and being thankful for that, or simply enjoying the luxury of having peace of mind, good health, the energy to sprint up the stairs .... there's so much to be grateful for.
The Happy Buddha statue in the picture was a gift. I walked into a store, and the boss said I can pay for it with any amount that I like because the Happy Buddha will go home with the person it has affinity with. I brought the Happy Buddha into my home two years ago, and it's one of my favourite display items.
The two rabbits symbolise Playfulness, which is a very important element in productivity. Work hard, play hard. Work is a chore, play is a desire.