Manado - 1st night

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I am quite sure not many among your social circle that you personally knows has been to the Sulawesi. I know because I have friends who have been to places like Singapore, Thailand, Cambodia, Australia, US, UK and Taiwan but none of those I knew been to the Sulawesi island of Indonesia. If it was not because of AirAsia, I would not have imagined being in the North Sulawesi.

So, I've been travelling to Indonesia for my 3rd time now. My destination this time: Manado. Honestly, before booking the "0 fare" flights during AirAsia's free seats promo, I never even knew there is a place called 'Manado'. We managed to get the free seats return ticket to Manado during Raya season. Back at my mind, I was thinking "of course can get free seats during the peak Raya season la, dunno what place is it also". And obviously, it wasn't even on my travel list at the moment. But, the RM70 (all in) for a return ticket worth of almost 4 hours flight was the biggest consolation. Even if I can get that price for my 50 mins flight from KL-KT it will be a good deal already. Now that I've got the flight tickets, I need to know where exactly am I heading to. I did days of research and travel tips on this place and...

...I landed safely in Sam Ratulangi International Airport, Manado about 8pm (Manado time/Malaysia time, which is same!). As it was dark and we were all tired and hungry, we took a taxi to the town with the offer of 70 000 Rp. The taxi fare from the airport to the town is almost that price but one good thing is that they run on meters actually. As it was the holiday (Raya) eve, the roads were packed and the traffic was bad. We stopped by a few hotels and finally decided in this Travello Hotel in Jl. Sudirman.

It was the the most luxurious looking hotel I've ever stayed in Indonesia. My trips have been more like a backpacker's kind of travelling but this time there were more people travelling so, yeay! I totally love staying here. It was really nice and comfy.

They even have this white towel made into a flower placed on your bed, which I just wish to keep it there untouch, as it is. (It makes you see many "stars" in this hotel, if you get what I mean, hehe...)

And there is even a LCD screen TV attached to the wall. It looks so perfect that it makes you just want to lie down on your comfy bed, snuggled under the blanket, with the remote control by your side and just watch TV for the whole Manado trip.

After placing our bags/ luggages, we went to this row of 'warung' behind the Mega Mall for food. There are quite a number of stalls along the street.

Being in Manado, we have to eat fish, especially ikan bakar. And we took 6 fishes for our dinner. I don't know much about fishes but I knew we had a rabbit fish, one "7-star pan" (literally translated from cantonese), and 4 kampung fish. All 'bakar' (ikan bakar). That is because they only know how to 'bakar'. Ikan bakar is one of their famous local food and it was good. They have this chilli called dabu-dabu which is really spicy for me but my friends just love it. But, it was nice! No doubt about it. Nice meal and all for about 190 000 Rp (about RM70). If you were in Manado, should really come and try one of the 'warung' behind Mega Mall.

Our dinner.

'Cone shaped rice'

Alpokat (or Alfokat?) juice.

This is one of their nice local fruit drinks. A must try if you love milk and chocolate!

Thats all for my first night in Manado :)

Next stop: Bunaken island

Buying time

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Doctors buy time. Put aside the fact that doctors save life, we, in the medical line actually learn to buy time most of the time.

We give tocolytics to those pregnant mothers with premature contractions, hoping to buy at least 48 hours after the last steroid injection, before the baby rushes to see the world with very immature lungs.

We give regular blood transfusions for thallasemic patients to give them time. It is not a cure but this at least buy them time. It will be far too tragic to have your baby dead within the first year of life. That is why we buy as much time as we could, to prolong the time, to prolong life.

Victims of motor vehicle accident who came in with low GCS score, polytrauma, that you may not even know if he or she survives tomorrow, is resusitated, intubated and on mechanical ventilation. He or she may be dead few hours following the initial insult but we still do whatever we can, at our level best, to keep the victim alive as long as possible. Time bought may not be long but at least some of the loved ones may make it to the bedside before the last breath.

Patient came in with advanced breast carcinoma came in with metastasis to liver and bone. We still offer chemotherapy, hoping it will shrink the tumor enough and to proceed with toilet mastectomy. Not to offer cure, but this is what we called palliative. Perhaps giving more quality time to patients than they thought they initially would have helps them (not only patient, but also relatives and firends) to learn about the illness and to gradually learn that this is actually terminal. And perhaps, some would have less regrets with the borrowed time.

A cure is not something that can be offered always, but we try; we try to buy time, all the time. Life and mortality are in our phases all the time. Time is perhaps all we need, before we are ready.


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I couldn't really remember when was the last time I really sat down and blog. It has been a while.

It has been about 4 years now and my commitment to blogging and writting has obviously shrunk. The enticement of being heard has been greatly outweighed by the loss of privacy. As contradicting as this may sound, this has indeed held me from the pen (key)board.

One of the most enjoyable part of blogging is being heard. As time goes by, more people I know personally reads and my choice of blogging material has gradually became more restricted. Not because I want to "kutuk" (backstab) anyone or anything but merely because I care (perhaps too much) about what others may think if I write this and what if I write that. And by saying that, I don't mean offensive post either. It is just the fact that human minds are capable of interpreting things their own way. I do not want to be misunderstood. I do not wished to be judged. So, I became too careful. So careful with my choice of words, and my choice of materials that I could hardly blog anymore.

On top of that is of course the privacy issue. I am afraid of 'over exposure'. It is like an ongoing, never ending contemplation of, "to blog" or "not to blog"; or "to post" or "not to post". Blogging to me is like finally got to vomit out ruminations bottled up in me. But, the same, persistent dilemma puts me into a mind fatigue state. It is like I want to freely be myself but I can't. So, I sort of vanished. Made myself disappear.

I think this has do me good. From the average maybe of 10 visitors per day, I now have maybe 1 or none per day. I know less or people follows my blog now. Perhaps some may even have forgotten. I am happy. I felt less restrain.

With so much things overflowing from the past to present, it is impossible to blog about all. Most importantly, this quarter of century has thought me some things. And I learned.

Apart from all the craps, I have decided to 'refresh' and do some refurbishing on my blog. Chucked away some stuffs. Added some. Edited some items. And "tadaa!". New look! Clean and simple :)

Hope to blog again, soon ;)

I have an impulse

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I have an impulse...

to delete this blog.

I have an impulse...

to leave this blog.