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Random things in France.

November 11, 2015

Well, I’ve been studying in France for two years now. There’re things that I would like to share with y’all.

1. Studies

What can I talk about this? I’m paid to study here and so there’s nothing else I could complain about. Luckily and gladly, the scholarship is still in the pocket, so yeah, 3 years to my graduation. Class of two years is coming to an end, and is currently applying for a few universities to continue my master degree.

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Awesome working desk.

2. Holidays

Personally, holidays = vacation. The greatest treasure of studying abroad is able to travel around Europe. I’m glad that, ada la rezeki sikit, I have some great travel buddies and we traveled to lots of places. It’s really exciting for me to think about and plan a vacation. And of course, post-vacation-blue is the hardest thing to handle.

What’s the cure? Undoubtedly, another vacation! Yes, it sounds mad but it does make sense. Coming back from my Christmas trip to Eastern Europe, there was still a week of holidays before the school’s recommencement. The whole week, I stayed home and couldn’t find motivation to be productive. Well, after ten days of eating out throughout the whole trip, how could you expect me to be satisfied with my own tasteless prepared meals? Then what I did was planning another trip to Ireland. Let me show some photos of my favorite places that I’ve been to.


Marseilles, France.








Perfect panoramic view of Florence.


Colosseum, Rome.


Pisa, Italy.




Always ready to leave home.

p/s : I travel with my own saving, not a single cent from my family. Don’t judge.

3. Baguette

It’s so cliché that every French walks around, in a metro or in a park, with a baguette in their hand. But, it’s true, this long stick bread is such a fortune, especially the freshly baked ones. It goes well with whatever meals u are eating, from fish dishes to meats or cheese,. When the nearby bakery serves nice baguette, your day will be enlightened.


(Click) Linked article ‘What France Can Teach The Rest Of The World About Living Well’

4. Eating out

(Click) Linked article 'What France Can Teach The Rest Of The World About Living Well'

(Click) Linked article ‘What France Can Teach The Rest Of The World About Living Well’

Eating out is everyone’s favorite. First, do survey on tripadvisor and read through comments. Second, call up to reserve or observe when passing by the restaurant and then walk in. Third, admire and take photos of the setting. Fourth, wonder what to eat, go for steak or duck confit (#firstworldproblem). Fifth, look at the wine menu and pretend to be able to differentiate them (padahal compare price saje but act like being in deep consideration of which wine goes well with the steak). Sixth, wine tasting before everyone get served (no matter how bad good the wine tastes, you will still nod to say ok because you somehow still have to pay for that wine unless you are rich enough to get another bottle). Seventh, food is served, wait the waiters to get away then take photos before actually eating them. Lastly, chit chat until you get bored then you can get home.

I used to think that spending hours on the dining table is impossible. But I realized that it’s such a pleasure to really spend a good time chitchatting while having dinner in a good restaurant with friends. An hour or two, who cares? Eating slow is a trend ok, bear with it.


Random restaurant in Amsterdam




(Click) Winter Garden in Toulouse.


Aiyo, which Asian doesn’t take photo of their foods?

5. Weather

Weather reflects the mood. If it’s sunny today, everyone is under the sun to have their lunch, to picnic, to sunbathe and to do whatsoever linked to the sun. But if it’s raining day then don’t ask why are others feeling down. And we are all good at weather forecast. Looking at Weather apps every single morning is such an essential task before you actually go out. And of course, the weather is a common topic, like wtf.

Good weather, wait what lagi. Picnic la on!





6. Coffee

Coffee is the essence of life. Sometimes, people ask why pay 2euro for a tiny cup of coffee. Well these photos explain why. You get the view, the atmosphere and the people-watching.






Same angle, different coffees, different places, but still, coffee at its best. And I came across this photo online where a Barista in Nice teaches the customers to order politely.

Translation  : Price of an espresso at the terrace A coffee .. 7Euro A coffee, please .. 4.25Euro Bonjour, a coffee, please .. 1.40Euro


7. Burger and Steak

Due to religious reason, I don’t really eat beef way back home. The moment i arrived in France, I started to try everything, rabbits, turkeys and beef. Well, rabbit tastes like chicken but better in texture. Just don’t imagine the cute rabbits when u eat them. And yeah, beef is the best. I once tried the must-try Florentine steak and there’s no turning-back. SUCH A SUCCULENT STEAK!



And also, burgers. Who the hell on earth can resist the temptation of burgers? Not the McD ones la.




Ok I’m done with these. Gimme meat.

8. Friends

To sum up my social life in France, I would rather say, I’m socially awkward. Things get quite serious as I find it uncomfortable to join with the french students. Not that they are unfriendly, but I find it hard to get myself involved. Too much in my own comfort zone. I blame no one but myself on not making effort.

9. Facebook addiction

Facebook sucks big time. I can stare and scroll on Fb for hours without doing anything. Facebook is one of the reason why we procrastinate. Damn it but how to live without….?  (No air is playing on the radio) 

10. Vision & Self motivation

Tough topic. I’m always pictured as a determined person of my academic achievement. Although I mention it as my strong personal characteristic during my job interview, it’s not true in fact. I’m currently in the self-discovery stage, trying hard to find out what I really want and what I’m really passionate about. #dontjudge

For some people, they don’t need those ultimate motivational quotes to keep them moving. Not me. I constantly read the articles on thoughtcatalog or elitedaily to keep myself motivated for hours. Yes, hours. Then the motivation fades away again. Perhaps being lost is the only way to self discover.


Let me share these three random articles in my bookmarks.

25 Things You Should Have By The Time You’re 25

25 Things You Have To Try In Your 20s At Least Once

What 10 Things Should You Do Everyday To Improve Your Life?

11. Being single

(Black out..) 

12. Money saving

I would rather say, cukup makan la my monthly allowance. Despite the routine of noting down all the daily expenses, I didn’t manage to save up any single penny. Or perhaps all the savings had turned into my travel budget. Well then, quoting my mom, spending is the best way for you to realize how much you have to earn in future in order to maintain your cukup-makan-pakai-main lifestyle. And hell yeah, still working on that. Saving is definitely not the way out but a good start. Let’s see how further could I get after one year of the plan. #fingerscrossed

13. Reading

For heaven’s sake, I actually started to do some reading. I have some self help Chinese books constantly resting in their grave. These books are motivational but they are more like stating facts with some random stories in order just to fit in their theories. And quickly, I lost the urge to read. Then I came across this book and it blew me away. So many things learnt from this old man’s real life story and how he embraced his life knowing he was dying of a motor neuron disease.

Click to get linked to the pdf version of this book.

 Learn how to die, and you learn how to live.

What’s wrong with being number two?

Don’t let go too soon, but don’t hang on too long.

Death ends a life, not a relationship.

14. Canteen foods vs Self-prepared meals

I would say french canteen food is the best. Paying 3Euros per meal, you get a salad, a dessert and a plat of meats & side dishes. Me, being a lazy arse, I only cook like twice a week so basically I’m constantly eating in the canteen. Sometimes, during festivals or some random happy days for the chefs, they will cook something extraordinary and it will definitely enlighten your day, for real.


Look at the big pot. How not to be happy?

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Paella at 3Euro? Mana cari?! And so, Lunch time = happy time, just because I get to eat some meats. Then get grumpy hungry 6hours later, then back to sad life. How sad?


This sad.

Then generally I will wait until the weekend to get someone to cook rice to eat with me. Rice is precious, like very precious. Or at least, I don’t have to eat my own dishes. And burrito is my life saver.

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This is not eating out, but a plate after blood’s donation. wth?

15. Political knowledge

It just so happens that I’m all over comedy shows. My meal-time accompany is then the taiwan political talk show hosted by chen wen qian. She talks about what’s happening globally in term of politics and economy. Proud no longer being so ignorant like I used to. It’s time tho to realize that politic is actually the future of a country, no matter which country. Japan, Egypt, Ukraine and Russia are no exceptions.

And I do enjoy reading Dr Mahathir’s short essays from time to time on FB. Not saying that I’m his follower but his articles could actually provoke deep thought on the social issues, so why not?

16. Government’s puppet

Well, kind of get enough of this stereotype. Accepting the scholarship doesn’t blind fond us. There’s no any single rules stated in the contract that we have to support which ruling party. Just that we, students living abroad, could not join any political demonstration. So, yeah, it doesn’t mean that I don’t support the government, just that to make clear that I do have my own political view instead of being brainwashed by any certain people.

17. Interviews and Internship

Great, interviews, I had a few. Three in total, but all didn’t go really well. To be honest, these interviews somehow made me realized that academic result doesn’t mean a shit. Thinking of having good grades facilitates the job search? In your dream, people don’t really really care. And it is then important to know how to sell yourself. How? Don’t know pun, google it.

And luckily, I found my intern in a laboratory. Not much thing to do actually and surf internet for good damn long hours, procrastinate to the max. And this is the 200km-away-town called Pau in South West France.



Perfect spot for a coffee.


The so damn good weather upon my first arrival.


You get to see snow-capped mountains outside the laboratory if the sky is clear.

20. Snow & Ski

Snowing is actually quite exciting. Waking up in the morning and seeing the white surrounding are just so cool. And I went skiing twice. It seems awesome to ski but very difficult to handle the two long sticks. It’s like learning walking like a penguin or even like a baby. Had lotsa fun though.






And also, random misty mornings when it was cold enough to form some ice on everywhere.


View from my window.


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21. Concert

And yes, we were really luckily to have Bruno Mars’s concert in our town Toulouse. The ticket was just 40Euros (Rm160) and so it was so damn worth it.


The crowd.


 My version : iPhone vid sucks. 

Random online version :

22. Wines

Honestly, it’s hard to say no to wines in France. You can simply find huge varieties of wines from all regions of France and the price is kind of reasonable, some might say cheap. And since temptations are everywhere, so … And don’t take me as a drunkard. These photos are just the good ones I took photo of throughout the TWO years here.


Wine tasting in Bordeaux.

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This cheap.

23. Christmas market

During this festive month, almost every town will organize a monthly Christmas market where you can get foods, red hot wines, churros, decorations, Christmas cards and gifts. Let me show you some of them.


Fun fair in Edinburgh


Decoration in Nice.


Amsterdam damn good grilled saussages. Damn.


Kelantaneses’ reunion in Prague.


Bread roll in Prague.

Then in my town :


Cheese and potato mixture. Really good.

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And this year, I sent out my first ever Christmas gifts to the friends. And agree that giving is better than receiving.


24. House chores

Being tidy at all time is really not my things, but still, there’s a limit. But when 6 tests and 1 presentation came all together in a week, my room was then like a war zone. I warn you first. And don’t judge. I’m too disgusted by myself looking at this photo AHHA



I swear these two photos are taken neither on the same day, nor the same week. This is just my one-month laundry after coming back from ten-days-winter-vacations. This is scary I know.



25. Ukulele

Guess you spotted my ukulele on the floor from the previous photo. Bought from a Christmas market two years back then. It has been such an accompany to me. It’s easy to learn the chords but I don’t really play it a lot. And neither any advancement with the guitar. But recently, so happened to record a 25-sec-melody.


Now you can laugh on that.

26. Eiffel tower

France = Paris = Eiffel Tower. People only think of Eiffel tower whenever they think of France. Being a tourist, of course I did visited and climbed all the way up to get the breathtaking views. And being an Asian, of course I took lots of photo.


Picnic first la before climbing up.






27. New year party

To celebrate 2014, we organized a home party. To make it festive, we actually bought champagnes, foie gras, osyters and lots of good stuff. We came back from Carrefour with a receipt of 250Euros. Bravo.



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Definitely a wrong way to eat this. Just put them all together for the sake of taking photo. HAHAHAHAHAh

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28. Lying down on the ground

I got this weird habit. I like to lie down on the field and enjoy the silence.


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And that’s it!



Wise words.

October 4, 2015

Advice from an 80 year old man
1. Have a firm handshake.
2. Look people in the eye.
3. Sing in the shower.
4. Own a great stereo system.
5. If in a fight, hit first and hit hard.
6. Keep secrets.
7. Never give up on anybody. Miracles happen everyday.
8. Always accept an outstretched hand.
9. Be brave. Even if you’re not, pretend to be. No one can tell the difference.
10. Whistle.
11. Avoid sarcastic remarks.
12. Choose your life’s mate carefully. From this one decision will come 90 per cent of all your happiness or misery.
13. Make it a habit to do nice things for people who will never find out.
14. Lend only those books you never care to see again.
15. Never deprive someone of hope; it might be all that they have.
16. When playing games with children, let them win.
17. Give people a second chance, but not a third.
18. Be romantic.
19. Become the most positive and enthusiastic person you know.
20. Loosen up. Relax. Except for rare life-and-death matters, nothing is as important as it first seems.
21. Don’t allow the phone to interrupt important moments. It’s there for our convenience, not the caller’s.
22. Be a good loser.
23. Be a good winner.
24. Think twice before burdening a friend with a secret.
25. When someone hugs you, let them be the first to let go.
26. Be modest. A lot was accomplished before you were born.
27. Keep it simple.
28. Beware of the person who has nothing to lose.
29. Don’t burn bridges. You’ll be surprised how many times you have to cross the same river.
30. Live your life so that your epitaph could read, No Regrets
31. Be bold and courageous. When you look back on life, you’ll regret the things you didn’t do more than the ones you did.
32. Never waste an opportunity to tell someone you love them.
33. Remember no one makes it alone. Have a grateful heart and be quick to acknowledge those who helped you.
34. Take charge of your attitude. Don’t let someone else choose it for you.
35. Visit friends and relatives when they are in hospital; you need only stay a few minutes.
36. Begin each day with some of your favourite music.
37. Once in a while, take the scenic route.
38. Send a lot of Valentine cards. Sign them, ‘Someone who thinks you’re terrific.’
39. Answer the phone with enthusiasm and energy in your voice.
40. Keep a note pad and pencil on your bed-side table. Million-dollar ideas sometimes strike at 3 a.m.
41. Show respect for everyone who works for a living, regardless of how trivial their job.
42. Send your loved ones flowers. Think of a reason later.
43. Make someone’s day by paying the toll for the person in the car behind you.
44. Become someone’s hero.
45. Marry only for love.
46. Count your blessings.
47. Compliment the meal when you’re a guest in someone’s home.
48. Wave at the children on a school bus.
49. Remember that 80 per cent of the success in any job is based on your ability to deal with people.
50. Don’t expect life to be fair.

45. Marry only for love.
46. Count your blessings.
47. Compliment the meal when you’re a guest in someone’s home.
48. Wave at the children on a school bus.
49. Remember that 80 per cent of the success in any job is based on your ability to deal with people.
50. Don’t expect life to be fair