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Interests, Pastimes & Hobbies

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Utilities in American Homes

Things Akira finds new in homes here at Seattle..

- Instead of air conditioners in Malaysian's home, we have heaters with centralized automatic control.

- The built-in dish washer under the kitchen counter reminds her of the CIP(Clean In Place) system she was familiar with at her dairy manufacturing work place.

 - Wooden built-up houses with every steps or water flow upstairs could be heard from downstairs or vice versa.

- Americans really do take recycling seriously with cleaning the recycled items and separating them into dedicated bins. Evey house has at least one of each green (yard waste), blue (recycle) and grey (garbage) bins.(Akira has never identified them this well before, seriously!)

- Contrary to back home, there are no traps in kitchen sinks here. Perishable items are allowed to drain down the sink into the  mechanical  food waste disposal unit.

- Gas to homes are supplied through centralized underground piping. Akira found out from her host mom when she couldn't find the familiar cylinder tank in the kitchen.

- It's safe to drink from the tap at home. Just fill your glass at the tap. There's not even a water filter installed.

- A toaster and microwave seems to be very useful to prepare the simplest meal - all kinds of sandwiches and burritos!

- With actual sunlight and heat available only for a quarter of the year, it comes to  no surprise to Akira that her home has a washing machine and a laundry dryer which she normally see at laundry shops in Malaysia.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Adventure in The Kitchen

Has Akira told you she once cooked for herself quite often? Well, not very good actually because the best food is the most sinful food one does not do it often enough to feed herself or others. She reckons that whatever food would taste good so long something gives the smoothest and creamiest texture (sour cream, mayonnaise, butter, cream cheese, oil, lard ) or cheeezy flavour (cheddar cheese, parmesan cheese, basically all sorts of cheese) or some crunchy deep fried food. To feed herself, she tries to eat food as close to its natural state as possible except with non-sinful seasonings as specified above. Not many appreciate her way of food preparation though but it's alright.

But first of all, Akira had to know what's in store for her to mix and match. This would mean rummaging the kitchen to familiarize with where the ingredients are placed, regardless they're dry or wet materials and how the available sauces, spices and seasonings tasted like.With these in hand, she'd be able to work more efficiently around the kitchen and she'd know what to add to food for that particular taste. Don't you agree?

"Pictures, oh pictures... where are you? Please show up! Didn't Akira remember taking a few of you?"

Sorry guys, Akira couldn't seem to find them. Probably she didn't take any of them after all while she had her hands and taste buds on the sauces.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Summer arrived at Seattle

Back in May 2010...

The sun was nowhere to be seen but yet the sky wasn’t dark. It felt like 6.30pm in Malaysia when in fact it was already 8,30pm. The kiddo would have to retire at 9.30pm. AS’s biological clock said she should not wash up until the sun sets. She didn’t feel the urge to get ready to sleep yet, it’s still 6.30 pm! I was still in office at this time of the day in Malaysia!

But Grrr…. “Damn, I’m freezing!” So, she snuggled into bed, and wrapped herself like a burrito in the comforter! “It’s cold, brrRRrr but it’s not dark yet outside! Arrgghh. Cold!

The next thing she knew, she woke up to a brand new day! The chill remained but not as cold as the evenings. She went in for the warm shower and wished to stay there forever.

“It’s cold!”

“No, it's not! ” The kiddo argued everytime! In a Tee and khaki shorts, he went out to play.

Nevertheless, it’s a lovely weather to walk when Akira hardly trickle a bead of sweat and maked an ugly sight of herself. The air is fresh(you hardly see or smell the emissions from vehicles), the flowers were blooming, the lake was pretty, the people were friendly, the dogs were happy, the aroma from Starbucks was tempting. Seattle, you're a heaven!

Now in July, after 2 months of high at 70 and low at 48 degrees, temperature for the past few days has risen and stayed at a high of 90 degrees during the day though it’s still pretty cold as the sun sets. Akira is beginning to understand why people like to soak up the sun as the temperature is a little colder unless you get direct sunlight and of your to get their tan.

Smiles on everyone's faces. Kids are competing each other in swim meets.
“Summer’s finally here!” Dressings switches to tank tops, mini shorts and flip flops, caps & sunglasses! Nice! And lets picnic down at the beach!

"Yee - haa!!!"

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