Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Kudos to RHB Customer Service Call Centre Manager
A while back, I blogged about how RHB pissed me off by shoving the debit card into my face and giving me false information about phasing out the ATM card and it being a directive from our central bank, Bank Negara. After that rant, I decided not to activate the card at all and just cut it up perhaps.

Today, at approximately 4.20pm, I got a call from this number which I didn't recognise. It was a lady from RHB Customer Service, her name is Norma. At first I thought it was one of those random survey calls, as she asked if I had some time to spare. So I took the call outside the working area and went to the office lounge.

Turns out, Norma was actually calling to clarify with me in regards to the debit card matter I had raised in my blog. She asked me if I could relate to her exactly what was it that made me so pissed off, so I related to her the conversation that transpired between me and the customer service guy the other day. I told her that the guy said:

- RHB is actually phasing out the current ATM card, a new policy from them, and replacing them with the new debit card.
- Only a "selected few" have been issued the new debit card.
- It's a directive from Bank Negara.

After listening to my side of the story, Norma clarified that:

- There was no such policy in place to replace the RHB ATM card at all.
- It's true that they're sending the debit card to select customers, as they want to gauge the feedback and response. However, it is not a new product.
- It is not a directive from Bank Negara (which I already knew because I made a check to verify).

Norma should be given a pat on the back, for taking the time and effort to actually call me and clarifying the issue with me. I honestly told her that I appreciated the fact that she, as the Manager of the call centre, is really listening to their customers and taking actions to better improve themselves. She obviously knew I was really unhappy and decided to give me a call to work things out. Of course I was unhappy, I felt like the bank was trying to fleece me LOL!

Norma, you made my day. Thank you for the call and for your clarifications. I can't remember the name of your staff that attended to my call last week though, but I'm sure you can look through your records of the call made and listen to it again (because your boy really told me those stories).

Yes, please don't attempt to lie or sugar coat your words when talking to Oli, or any consumer for that matter. I always find ways to verify information. I don't like it when people/institutions lie to me. A consumer should always be aware.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

A New Challenge
I've always been put off by cardio. I've always had many many reasons to avoid cardio. Not enough stamina, not enough breath, not strong enough, weak lungs. Procrastination always got in the way, I admit that. So for someone with as much procrastination as I have, it took an article in the local daily to jump-start my initiation to start incorporating cardio into my exercise regime.

Honestly, the first time I started running, I almost died XD. I couldn't pace myself. Didn't really know if I started off in the right foot, didn't really do much research on it. Running a 400 meters was a monumental effort for me. I had good shoes, but what I didn't have, or prepare, was my mental. And I almost gave up. I thought I was too weak to run, and should just stick to yoga.

Hubby was my motivator. He didn't let me give up. He ran with me on certain days, encouraging me. He even helped me pace myself, and advised me not to be so hard on myself. So I started adjusting my workout days, to make sure I don't over exert myself. I also used a running guide to help further improve my regime. More reps, shorter distance. Less reps, longer distance. Something like that.

One fine day, hubby's colleagues suggested to join the Shape/Men's Health Nite Run 2010, to be held at Putrajaya. We agreed to go for the 5KM Fun Run. That became my motivation as well, to better improve myself in running. Unfortunately, when we tried to sign up for that category, it was closed! T.T Then we decided, ok, eventhough the next category was 12.3KM, which we probably can't finish (LOLOL!), let's just sign up for that to experience the run!


And so, 4 of us signed up for this year's 12.3KM Shape/Men's Health Nite Run 2010!!! OMFG what did I just get myself into XD


This is definitely a new experience for me, and I'm really forward to it. I know some folks would say "Aiya, no way you can finish 12KM la!", because I've only started running about a month ago. But hey, it's not about the competition. We're participating in the run to experience the adrenalin and to soak up all the excitement and have fun fun fun!!! And I'm gonna have some real fun that night!!! :D :D :D I'm gonna run as far as my feet can take me. If I get tired, I'll pace myself and walk. Then I run again :D

Friday, June 25, 2010

Fucking Pissed With RHB
I've been a RHB account holder since 2001. The only card I have from them is the ATM card. When I got the ATM card, there was no such thing as the current RM 8 annual fee yet, that was implemented a few years later. I don't have another other form of plastic from them.

Last night, hubby checked our mailbox downstairs and there was a registered package for me. I opened it and it was from RHB. Inside was a RHB Cash Connect debit card, with the standard printed mail attached, informing me that I am now a recipient of the RHB debit card. I read through the terms and conditions booklet and found out the annual fee for this spanking new debit card, is RM 20/annually.

I didn't apply for this debit card. I didn't ask for this debit card. I don't need a debit card. I don't want a debit card.

So, this morning I made a phone call to RHB. After punching in several numbers to get through, I managed to talk to a real voice. I told the customer service guy on the other line that I was issued a debit card which I never asked for, and that I want to cancel it.

He then explained that RHB is actually phasing out the current ATM card, a new policy from them, and replacing them with the new debit card (which can also function as an ATM card). He also added that if I choose not to activate it (use it), I can do so, and that they won't bill me the RM 20 annual fee. Now the problem is, I repeated to him, was that if RHB is phasing out the ATM card, wouldn't that mean your customers are forced to switch to the debit card eventually?!? And that would also mean they will be billed higher in terms of annual fee for the debit card?!?

So the customer service fella added that, if I activate the card within a 120 day period from the date of issue, the fee is only RM 15. If the card is activated after, it's RM 20. Either way, it means that RHB is screwing and milking their customer for more money, regardless of when you activate the debit card. He also sweet coated his sentence by adding that only a "selected few" have been issued the new debit card. Only a fucking moron would believe that...! I made a quick check, the RHB Cash Connect debit card was introduced back in 2008.

And he added that it's a directive from Bank Negara, our central bank.

I'm making a check with Bank Negara on this, as I'm seriously not happy with the way the banks in our country work. So bloody unethical of them to simply charge without even informing their customers. They just expect to shove their new policy down your throat, and for you to just swallow it.

GAH! Early morning make me so geram dy...!!!!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Free Health Screening
Last week I had arranged for a free health screening for some of us in the workplace. My cousin who is doing her doctorate in Japan was looking for people who would like to take part in her research study, for the prevention of metabolic syndrome, and I figured, hey... why not ask the office?

So I did and they were pretty happy to take part (plus it's free!). When I told my cousin that my colleagues would like to participate, she told me that if I can get at least 10 people in the office who fall into the category she was studying, she could arrange for the lab technicians to come to the office to collect the samples. How cool is that! And lady luck was with us, the office had exactly 10 people between the ages of 30-65, Malaysian Chinese (11 if I include hubby).
The aim of this research is to conduct an extensive analysis and obtain data relating to the prevalence of metabolic syndrome, its risk factors, and association with other diseases in the course of epidemiologic and genetic studies of Japanese and Malaysian population. Through this research, we intend to establish an integrated strategy for the prevention of metabolic syndrome among people with various and differential background of lifestyle and genetic traits.
And so, the health screening was arranged. We had to fill up a questionnaire pertaining to our health condition, lifestyle and food consumption, provide our DNA samples, gave some blood and had our measurements (body weight, height, body fat) taken.

DNA swabs. Do they remind you of some CSI episode?

I had done my blood test last year, so it was kinda good to see if my readings were any better (or worse!) this year, heh! My concern was more towards the cholesterol reading, as my *LDL is a little high, heh! Plus I've never had my body fat measurement taken before, and it was interesting to see the contraption my cousin brought to measure just that. It had this base which looked like a scale, with 4 metal spots at the base, which you put your feet on. You have to hold this holder at arms' length, and a minuscule amount of electrical current will be sent through your body, from one foot to another foot.

After the DNA and body measurements were done, we each took turns to give our blood (5ml aje). I have to say this... The guy that took my blood, not very pro. He had to puncture both my arms to get the 5ml. Why? Because the first arm, my right arm... He found the vein (it's a very clear vein), poked the syringe in and pulled the syringe back. Somehow very little blood came out. And he tries to maneuver the syringe a few times, and all this time I was watching the syringe, still poked into my vein. Plus they had forgotten to bring the tight band to tie the upper arm.

So I told him, try the other arm. No sense you keep poking the same vein (and risk breaking the syringe while it's still in my vein!). So onwards to my left vein and wa-la! He got my 5ml. I know I'm doing injustice to the lab technician, as I was comparing him to my family doctor who has really steady hands (and skills!). Even hubby thought the lab technician wasn't very good, because even though hubby didn't have to be poked on both arms, there was still a bruise. My right arm still bears the bruise until today, as I write this blog post. Sorry cuz, have to say that lab fella wasn't all that pro after all~

After a few days, my cousin dropped by the office with our results. Some of my colleagues were comparing results, heh! Was good to see what our results were, and to be able to see the figures and how we can better improve them :P Overall, everyone's cholesterol level was a little high (some higher than the rest, and some with high glucose levels) so as most nutritionist would advice: Have a balanced and healthy lifestyle. I guess most Malaysians, our cholesterol would be a little bit high due to all the yummy available food we have in this country (not to mention sedentary lifestyle some might have).

So what are you waiting for? Stop sitting around in front of the computer and go do some exercise!

Thanks Roseline, for conducting this research study :)

*HDL - good cholesterol
LDL - bad cholesterol

Triclycerides - fatty acids




Sunday, June 6, 2010

Mizu Japanese Fine Dining @ TTDI Plaza - Weekend Buffet

This is my second visit to Mizu, my first being at the Bangsar Village outlet about a year ago. This time around I'm here for their weekend buffet, which I've received good reviews from my colleague who has tried it a few times. So I told hubby and some close friends about it, and we decided to pay a visit to Mizu for another session of pigging out, HAH! Shit, have to jog and yoga more dy...!

Mizu Japanese Fine Dining @ TTDI Plaza.

I made my reservations through TheQGuides.com, an online restaurant reservation portal which currently has a list of several well known eateries within Klang Valley (beats having to make phone calls, heh!).

Fresh sashimi cuts @ Mizu.

When we arrived it was still relatively early, and the waitress advised us to go ahead and take our food first. My friends and I didn't hestitate at all, haha! The sashimi cuts were thick and fresh. There was also their famous Mizu maki available on the buffet line.

Awesome beef teppanyaki @ Mizu.

There's a sheet of paper on every table, with a list of other items available such as California rolls, a variety of teppanyaki and tempura. You just need to indicate how many servings you want for your selection, and the order will be prepared by the kitchen staff. We tried their beef teppanyaki and it was AWESOME! Juicy cubes of beef, marinated and cooked in a sweet sauce, the meat was really tender and oozing with flavour.

Ebi tempura @ Mizu.

The prawn tempura was good too, springy and crunch. In most Japanese buffets we go to, we hardly have the chance to eat prawn tempura mainly because elsewhere, the kiasu people will sapu all prawn tempura on one plate and forget that there are others who also want to eat them. Hence the past Japanese buffets I've been too, I never go for the prawn tempura. However, in Mizu, you have to place your order for the tempura on paper, and the kitchen will prepare it accordingly. Now this is a good system, I like. Cos that means I don't have to fight with kiasu people to tempura, hah!


Unagi, grilled salmon & pregnant fish @ Mizu.

The 3 items above area also prepared based on your order. No need to queue, teehee! Just make sure you finish all that you order, otherwise you have to pay for uneaten food. The moral is: Only order what you can finish.

Yummy ice-cream @ Mizu.

We saved some room for dessert. My friend was having the time of his life with the cheese cake. Unlike some Japanese buffet locations, there is no Baskin Robbins or Häagen Dazs here. My colleague said the ice-cream is made by the chef. And boy, was it good~ The green tea ice-cream and the black sesame ice-cream was both smooth and the taste had a nice balance, not too bitter, not too sweet. There's also vanilla, chocolate and strawberry ice-cream available if you're not into the other 2 ice-cream flavours.

I can so see us going back to Mizu for the weekend buffet in their near future :P Definitely worth a 2nd, 3rd, 4th... visit!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Royce
Now available in Tropicana City Mall. Awesome chocolates from the land of the rising sun (Japan, if you still didn't know which country I was referring to). I first had a taste of it back in 2005/2006. Back then, it was only available at Isetan, KL.

Royce Nama - RM 45

What's so special and different about Royce? Well, for one, they have a range of soft chocolates~ *noms*


Kasi sapu top row oredi~

Soft chocolates. Utter bliss. A smooth velvety texture when in the mouth. Melts in the mouth. How dreamy. Made with 25% fresh cream. Sprinkled with cocoa powder. Noms~

*dreamy*



Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Charantou Siew Yuk @ Tmn Megah
Went to this new roasted pork belly restaurant (siew yuk) near Tmn Megah area with my cousin, after getting recommendation from a friend (she said the skin was too crispy!). It's situated right next to Fu Kua Rstaurant. Sat down and took a look at their menu. Roasted pork belly was their specialty. So we decided to give it a try. Ordered 2 plates of roasted pork belly rice, and another to takeaway.

Chatted with my cousin while waiting for our food. Watching other tables get their food. The roasted pork belly the other table was having seems decent. Waited some more. The boss saw us and we signalled that our food hasn't arrive. He quickly went to check and walk to our table... "Sorry ah, we ran out of siew yuk. Can I change your oder to char siew instead?"

-________________________-" Oklor, no choice.

Char siew failed maximum. Too dry. No sauce/gravy. Rice was dry too, a little hard. And the side vegetables that came with our rice were too oily. While eating, the boss came to our table again and said... "Sorry ah, can't give you takeaway, we ran out of char siew."

-________________________-" Fine fine, cancel the takeaway.


Today is their first day of operations. Can tell they're inexperienced in handling and operating a F&B outlet. I asked the young lady if they roast their own siew yuk and stuff, and she gleefully replied yet and added that they under-estimated the crowd on their first day, hence they ran out of meat really fast.

"How did you find our siew yuk? Did you like it?"

"I didn't have the chance to try it. You guys ran out of it..."

"OMG I'm soooo sorry! Come back tomorrow ok! Come earlier to try it!"

Fortunately for this week, everything is half price. I wouldn't have paid full price for crappy char siew! At RM 8.50 a plate (normal price), it's a little pricey for a plate of roast pork belly rice though....~