Besides visiting relatives and friends, this is how Cass spent her time in Ipoh on the 1st, 2nd and 3rd day of CNY. Her two sisters were as usual hooked to their phones 😡
Continued with her Hello Kitty cross stitch project and of course popping on granny's homemade cookies into her mouth throughout the day. Ju, my bff in Singapore gave this lovely gift to Cass for Christmas when we met up in Singapore in December last year.
Cass only works on this cross stitch project whenever she has extra time on hand, i.e. when school and tuition homework is completed, piano practised and my BM homework for her is done. She hardly has time on school days, which means that she can only work on this project during school holidays.
With the very little time that she had, she managed to complete only one Hello Kitty since she started the project in late Dec 2017:
I'm amazed with the patience and focus that Cass has with cross stitching, just like how she could spend hours on end solving boxes after boxes of jigsaw puzzle when she was just 3 years old.
Below: our reunion dinner at Kok Thai Restaurant on the first day of CNY.
The stroller that Alycia is lugging here once belonged to her. It's a gift to Alycia 15 years ago from Marene 'kham mou' (my brother's wife) from Singapore. Who would have thought that 15 years on, Alycia would be lugging this very stroller for her kham mou's babies. In fact, the twinnies are now using the playpen and baby cot that Alycia once used whenever we went back in Ipoh when she was a baby.
A trip to Ipoh will always involve a trip to Kinta City, a shopping mall located just a couple of minutes away from my parents. The girls just have to drown themselves with books at Popular Book Store.
A trip to Ipoh will never be complete for Cass if she doesn't get to go to the arcade at Kinta Cinty to try her hands on the claw machines, bouncy ball machine and crystal machine.
Cass gasped in disbelief when she saw a woman with a big bag of plush toys that she won from the claw machine. How did this lady do it?! Chances of clawing out a plush toy successfully are 1 in 10, perhaps even 1 in 20. And this lady had about 4 or 5 toys inside the bag. I think it was pure fluke at that moment. When Cass and I stood behind her to watch how she did it, she didn't succeed anymore after several tries. And nope, I didn't give Cass any money to play. She knows it very well that one must be a million times lucky to 'hit the jackpot'.
But I think Cass was very lucky coz when she went into the arcade at the kids' department of Aeon, we met a woman who was extremely amiable, warm and generous who she gave Cass a giant 'crystal'. The woman in her late 40s and her husband were accompanying their 15-year old daughter. The woman must have spent about RM50 on tokens for her daughter to play on just one game machine ~ which dispenses colorful fake bling bling crystals. The more tokens you slot in, the more chances of getting a giant crystal. Cass and I stood there watching the girl play at the machine with her parents cheering her on and jumping in excitement each time the machine dispensed 'crystals'. The sound of the crystals dropping out of the machine, like the sound of gold bars dropping out is enough to excite and tempt you to slot in a few more tokens to win more crystals. The girl and her mother would then gleefully collect the dropping crystals as if they were collecting real gold and store them in a plastic bag. From time to time, the woman would chat with me while commenting "I spent more than RM20 just on plastic for my daughter", followed by a cheerful guffaw. She must have been in a real good mood that day. After a good 20 minutes or so with her daughter filling up a huge bag full of fake crystals, the woman walked towards me with two gigantic crystals in her hand (one is green and one purple) and asked Cass to choose one. Cass was flabbergasted and said 'NO'. The woman was persistent and persuaded Cass to choose one. Seeing how sincere the woman was, I chose the purple one on Cass' behalf and thanked the woman profusely before we parted ways and wished each other "koong hei fatt choy" 😆
The giant purple fake crystal is now on my table top. It reminds me of one woman's generosity, kindness and sincerity and how much joy the cheap crystal has brought to Cass. One day, I will pay it forward and pass the kindness to another kid, perhaps in an arcade.