Journal #173 – Feeling Exhausted

I wasn’t sure how am I to start this journal so this sentence shall serve as a filler until I get my writing mojo back.

This week marks the start of my fourth week at my new job. Hmm…It’s no longer “new” anymore. As I mentioned previously, I am working on the identity access module for the project I am on. Even though it’s the first day of the week, working on it has pretty much drained all my mental energy preventing me from writing anything decent. I’m tired and felt like sleeping.

You know what the funny thing was? I actually drank my usual Cold Brew in the morning and by mid-day, I was tired. I guess my body has gotten used to the amount of caffeine.

Now, I’m trying to drink some green tea but it’s not working either.

Even so, I still went about doing some more bug fixes and code refactoring for my client. I uploaded the compiled jar file to the FTP and hope my client test it tomorrow. I also gotten the cheque for this month’s freelance work deposited in my bank. Just waiting for it to be cleared.

After having my dinner, I went to watch The Last Ship as well as two episodes of Star Trek: Discovery on Netflix.

The Last Ship is atypical for me. The story is kind of expected and now I’m watching it for some kind of conclusion. For Star Trek, I thought it would be a nice addition to the my “watched” science fiction TV series. So far, I like the show. Let’s see how the rest of the show go as they get released on Netflix.

Generally, I prefer space-based science fiction and Star Trek is one of my more favorite ones. And I watched them for more inspirations and help take my mind away from the harsh reality of real life.

Oh, in case you wondering, I don’t quite like Star Wars. =x

Ok, I shall call it a night.

Here I conclude my journal for today.

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Journal #169 – End of Third Week at Work

Today marks the end of the workweek at my new job. I have mostly eased myself into the job, focusing on doing what is required, ignoring the other noises.

In terms of adapting, I like to think that I have done that. I am comfortable in my role now. I am comfortable with my colleagues. And I am comfortable in my current environment.

As for familiarizing myself with the project, it’s still a work in progress but I doubt I will need to know the full picture or interact with the vendors and customer. I don’t want to. Why? It’s to reduce my mental load and so that I can focus on what’s truly important— coding.

During these three weeks, I have also mostly picked up on the basic aspect of using .NET and C# in general and was able to complete the implementation of various small use cases on the frontend. I also start to appreciate the beauty of C# though I still don’t quite enjoy using it as much as Java. But since I am a writer first, programmer second, I just saw it as Java is my mother tongue and C# is my second language. At the end of the day, they are like English and Mandarin, and are really just tools for me to put out my solution or idea.

My next task for work is to develop the identity access component and that means I have moved to backend development. I foresee I will probably spend the next two weeks on this. As part of the development, I spent quite a fair amount of time first to understand the business requirements through discussion and extracting out the use cases. Of course, my approach is to code while extracting out the use case. This is my way of setting in stone my idea, so to speak. It helps me to identify flaws in my design that were initially in my head.

For my freelance work, I also uploaded a compiled jar to the client’s FTP server. I also managed to finish implementing a new function.

So in a way, it’s a rather productive week.

Before I forget, my application for deferment of the military in-camp training was successful (not particularly happy about it). I also received a call-up for another make-up training set on the first two weeks of January 2018 on the same day via SMS. Well, I wanted to go back for the make-up as soon as possible, made it known to my unit, and was informed January was the earliest possible. Not ideal but better than nothing. So in a way, the year 2018 will see me going back to in-camp training twice. It’s fine though.

Here I conclude my journal for today.

Journal #131 – Rainy Tuesday

Beep Beep

I woke up to the sound of my phone going off. I had set the alarm for 0730hrs because I wanted to go to work earlier today. However, I was extremely tired from only sleeping 5 hours. I dragged myself out of bed, hit the off button, and went back to sleep. I woke up naturally half an hour later.

It was only then that I realized it was raining. It has actually been raining on and off for the past few days but it doesn’t really change the overall temperate. It still felt humid and hot.

I went about my morning routine, and had my breakfast. While eating and reading my Twitter feed, the weather got worse and was pouring down heavily.

I took a shower and left the house at around 0930hrs. As it was still pouring down heavily with strong wind, I knew I couldn’t walk to the train station. If I did that, my pants and shoes would be completely drench which I hate a lot.

So instead I went to the bus stop behind my apartment block. I took the feeder bus from the bus stop to the bus interchange at Jurong point. Upon boarding the bus, there were only three passenger, me included. It felt lonely but then just the way I like it. I never quite like boarding a bus packed full of people as I find them to be overstimulating.

As it was slightly after 1000hrs, it was considered off-peak and the bus simply went through the remaining bus stop without really stopping. Most people by now, especially the students and working adults, would already be in school or at work respectively. The retirees and senior citizens, due to the heavy rain, I’m assuming that they won’t want to go out for safety reason.

After I reached Jurong Point, I made my way to the MRT station. I used the sheltered walkway that connects the mall to the train station. But due to the intensity of the rain, I got peppered by the rain and my glasses were covered in rain drop. It wasn’t a very nice experience.

The train platform itself wasn’t that packed and the train didn’t take long to arrive. Boarded it and despite the empty seats, I chose to stand at the gangway connection. I personally love that spot because it is the least crowded part of a train even during peak hours.

Upon arriving at Raffles Place station, I made my way to Starbucks, got a venti-sized Cold Brew, and a Cajun Chicken sandwich. I went up to my client’s office and made my way to the backdoor where it leads directly to the IT room. Before I scanned my thumbprint, one of the staff from the Settlement department just came out from the washroom and I greeted her. We both went in and made our way to the IT room.

I wasn’t sure if it was related to me placing down the sandwich on the desk but there was a conversation about sandwiches. It turns out there was a sandwich store nearby that serve pretty good sandwiches but ever since the closing of that store, the replacement store didn’t really serve good sandwiches.

After the Settlement lady left, I went about finishing my sandwich and got down to work. I alternate my attention between Twitter and NetBeans as well as my phone. Before long, it was 1340hrs and I decided it was time for me to get lunch.

I got Chicken Rice from the food court nearby and went back to office. While eating at my desk, I went to read some science and tech news. After that, I went back to work again.

At around 1600hrs, I decided to drink some tea. So I went back to StarBucks again and ordered a venti-sized Earl Grey.

I got back to work again and lost track of time. Before I knew it, it was 1810hrs. I decided to call it a day and packed up. I left the office at around 1820hrs.

While walking home from the train station, my ex-colleague texted me asking how was life for me on Signal. So I chatted with him a while before he said he had to go offline. After that, I went to take a shower again.

For dinner, my dad got us curry rice. He only told us it’s from Clementi but didn’t elaborate further. I personally like to eat the Hainanese Curry Rice at Maxwell Hawker center. This one from Clementi was alright. I found the rice to be a little dry and the curry wasn’t that oily. For those who would like to try out Hainanese Curry Rice around Singapore, check out this entry.

After dinner, I watched a few episode of Mr. Robot Season 1. Now as I’m writing this journal, I pondered what I wanted to do next. Maybe I could watch Mr. Mercedes and see what’s the fuss about. Or maybe I should just finish watching the whole Season 1 of Mr. Robot.

Don’t worry, I will figure it out.

In the meantime, for those who are into Java programming, I think this article on the private access modifier would be good for you. Personally, despite me working with Java for so long, I didn’t know about it too.

Here I conclude my journal for today.

Daily Journal – Aug 10, 2017

This is my 126th journal.

Slept pretty late last night at around 2 am. Woke up at around 1000hrs and decided that I will go to my client’s office this morning.

Arrived at client’s office at around 1215hrs after getting my lunch and coffee to go. Started eating at my desk in the office while chatting with the manager. At around 1230hrs, she went off to gym while I continue to eat and drink my coffee.

After that I got started working on one of the enhancements. I managed to go into the zone and do my work. I also spent quite a fair bit of time doing code refactoring and moving classes around so that they fit into the bounded context.

At around 1700hrs, I felt hungry and decided to redeem my Starbucks free food. Had a grilled chicken sandwich.

Then I look at some news article on the web before deciding to call it a day. Packed up and left the client office at around 1800hrs. I had a dinner appointment with my friends at Clarke Quay. As I was in Raffles Place, I reached my destination in less than half an hour.

I waited for them for about 15 minutes or so. During that time, I walked around the Central Shopping Center listening to Spotify.

When my friends arrived, we made our way to Keisuke Ramen. We ordered the same ramen with rich broth and all toppings. However, we also had customization. One of my friend disliked spring onion while I dislike bamboo.

We chatted while eating as well as after finishing our food. Then we left and settle the bill amongst ourselves. Then we went to the ice cream shop called 320 Below at Central Shopping center. We ended up ordering the same Belgian Dark Chocolate ice cream.

I found the ice cream quite alright. Or maybe there just not much difference you can expect from an ice cream. The chocolate was sufficiently bitter and the price was comparable to other ice cream shops.

After that one of the friend went separate way as he wanted to take cab home. The other friend and I took the west-bound train home. During the journey, we discussed about my intention to be a writer instead of a programmer going forward and what are the things that should be done. At Jurong East, my friend went off to another platform to take another train while I continue on.

I reached home at around 2115hrs, took out my MacBook from my bag, and started doing some stuff. I also went to power up my NAS. At around 2130hrs, I went for a shower. After I came out, prepared a vitamin C drink, and started looking for shows to binge watch.

That’s all for now and I will go on to do some other random stuff.

But wait… let me go watch a video from one of my favorite YouTuber.

Here I conclude my journal for today.

Daily Journal – Aug 7, 2017

This is my 123rd journal.

I woke up especially early today at around 0645hrs. Went to the washroom and then I went back to my bed attempting to sleep. But I just couldn’t sleep. So instead I just laid there thinking about stuff before getting up at around 0709hrs. Took a pill for my gastritis and then brushed my teeth.

Used my iPad Pro for a bit to browse the web and look through my Facebook news feed before having my breakfast at around 0740hrs.

Watch some YouTube video on my iPad pro while eating. After I’m done, I went for a quick shower and got ready to go to my client’s office.

Got a cold brew and a Turkey Ham with Egg and Cheddar Sandwich from Subway after I arrived at Raffles Place at around 0940hrs.

Enter a caption

I know it’s bad for people who has gastritis like me but as I said repeatedly. I love coffee too much.

I started doing some work at around 1030hrs. While writing codes, I was messing around with the virtual machine running on my MacBook pro. I was attempting to figure out why the MSSQL database connection was slow and Windows itself was sluggish. So I was powering on and off the virtual machine. On the third attempt, my MacBook Pro suffered from a kernel panic. I mean, the Windows VM was loading up after I logged in and I was concurrently browsing the web.

I of course went and remove the kext, “tl.uds.netusb controller”, because it was an unnecessary kernel extension. It was the TP-Link USB controller software for the printer my previous company was using. Since I already left, this dump reminded me that I don’t need the controller anymore.

After that, I restarted my MacBook Pro one more time after the system started up again. Luckily I saved my work already and so I could continue from where I left off.

I tried the VM one more time and it was still fine. So after I’m done testing one of the feature that I was implementing, I powered off the VM and focus on another feature that don’t need the VM just yet.

Now, I personally hate virtual machines and is looking for alternatives. I’m thinking about buying an Intel NUC just to host Windows-specific stuff (E.g. Microsoft SQL Server). It is so that I can have a portable server and not worrying about internet connectivity or data breaches (the database contains sensitive client information), while I do my main work on the MacBook Pro (no, I’m not going back to Windows). If I need to any stuff like testing out SQL scripts, I could just do a remote desktop into the NUC.

I don’t think it make sense for me to spend maybe SGS$3000 or more to get a Surface Pro with decent specification or maybe < SG$1500 for a budget laptop. Weight and price are both concerns of mine. If anyone got any other better suggestions do let me know in the comments.

Decided to call it a day at around 1700hrs to avoid the evening crowd. Went home, played a few rounds of Plague Inc., reached home and unpack my Mac again.

I opened up my Apple Mail and went through all the emails from all my email accounts. I got a shock when I saw that I to pay Amazon for usage of the AWS. At first, I thought I had shutdown all the instances that I used. It turns out that I forgot to shutdown the RDS instance and my S3 bucket was still active. I made payment and quickly terminate and delete the RDS instance and S3 bucket. I am contemplating if I should shut down the account since I don’t think I will be using it personally.

After that, I went for a shower and started watching Game of Thrones Season 7, episode 4. Now this is the episode to die for.

I’m not gonna even try to warn anyone about spoilers since this is the internet age. Everything is out there already.

To sum the whole episode up: the Lannisters got severely roasted by the dragon and swarmed by the Dorathki warriors. Jamie’s fate is unknown. Bran Stark is too calm while Arya Stark is a seriously good fighter. Littlefinger is still being the resident creeper.

Earlier today, I actually wanted to watch Atomic Blonde but the friends that I asked either didn’t want to watch or not free. Since it is ridiculously rated R21 in Singapore, I have to watch it in the cinemas since I don’t think I will be able to get it from iTunes. If it really comes down to it, I will watch it by myself. Just hope there are still shows this week.

Oh wait… apparently, I can get R21 movies from iTunes according to this news article: New rule on R21 content reflects changing media landscape.

Personally, I never quite like the idea of censorship or ratings. I mean, the world itself is not that friendly or nice. There are so many things going on. The act of censorship or ratings is like trying to shield people from realities of the world or preventing people from seeing new ideas.

I guess my stance on censorship comes from the fact that I am mostly immune to violent imageries, and I can deal with mature content or thought provoking stuff. I’m not even grossed out by gore or blood in films. I can tell what is fake or propaganda, and what is real.

But I can’t say the same for the other 16, 17 or 18 year-old Singaporeans. I mean even some 21-year-olds still have the mindset of a 16-year-olds. So I shall just say my piece and let it go. Beside I’m already old enough that not really restricted by these ratings unless the content is banned or blocked by the government.

I think I better stop here as I will probably go on and on about some other stuff. I will share more of my thoughts about some other stuff in separate entries or another journal.

Here I conclude my journal for today.

Daily Journal – Jul 28, 2017

This is my 113rd journal.

Was already awake at around 0745hrs but decided to continue to remain in bed until the alarm went off at 0800hrs.

Had my breakfast, consisting of instant oatmeal and instant noodles with sesame oil broth and egg.

Made my way to my client’s office at Raffles Place from home at 0930hrs. Reached the office at around 1015hrs after getting Venti-sized Cold Brew and turkey ham with egg and cheddar sandwich.

Reached client’s office at 1025hrs, settled down and got to work. Fixed more bugs and uploaded the executable to the FTP. Also met with the company’s Managing Director and the Financial Controller and had a quick chat.

Decided to have lunch at 1320hrs. Walked around to look for a restaurant to eat at One Raffles Place. Couldn’t find any. The lunch crowd is just insane. Decided to have my lunch to go. Ordered Kaisen Donburi to go and went back to my client’s office.

Ate my lunch in the office, did some light reading online, and chat with my friends.

Waited for the manager to come back and I deployed the application one more time after finding more bugs and fixing it on the spot.

And why are there so many bugs? My work lacks the quality because of my lack of attention to details. The reason is very simple. I became convinced that even when I tried to give a fuck, management don’t recognize my effort. Well, this mindset is wrong. I need to change it back to what I had all along. Focus on quality delivery, even if I have to spend more time or effort to do so.

Later at around 1730hrs, I left the client office and made my way to Redhill via the MRT. I was meeting my former colleagues at the Tsubame Ramen which I talked about in my previous entry in June of 2017.

So today, the ramen’s standard dropped in terms of broth, meat and the noodles. The Shoyu broth lacks the saltiness as compared to what I ate the first time round. Shoyu means Soy Sauce and Soy Sauce are salty. The braised pork lack the required taste and contained quite a fair bit of bones. The noodles were softer than usual. However, for $6, I can’t ask too much. So this time around, the score is 3 out of 5 stars.

We chatted for a bit and had some desert. I was thirsty as fuck and so I ordered more drinks. We left the place at around 2130 hrs and I took the train home from Harbourfront MRT station. On the train, I caught up on some of the videos from some channels that I followed recently. Reached home at around 2315hrs to finish off this journal.

Prepared a drink with Redoxon Triple Action.

I have been taking their Double Action tablets for quite some time now. If I remember correctly, since I was 15. Double action means each tablet contains both Zinc and Vitamin C. I took the tablets to combat my acne back then. Partially to help speed up the healing process. Also I don’t like to eat fruits or vegetables. So that was the only way I can ensure my Vitamin C levels are ok.

When I got adult acne outbreaks around 25, I was expecting that it will help with the healing process but it didn’t. I suspect it was because my adult acne was primarily nodular acnes. It was six months before I went through a course of antibiotics to get them under control but it was too late. The acnes are mostly gone but in their place I got acne scars in places where the skin was perfectly smooth. I hate it.

Yes, who say guys don’t need to care about their looks. Those who have good looks naturally says that or their masculine ego is so big that they didn’t dare to acknowledge that.

Now I’m looking for decently priced acne scar treatment program. So if anyone got any suggestion, let me know via the comments.

I will get a shower after I publish this journal. That’s all for now.

Here I conclude my journal for today.

Daily Journal – Jul 11, 2017

This is my 99th journal.

Finished a SIT with a tester in the morning. So in a way, that application is done. Two more applications to go. Did some internal testing and rehearsal for tomorrow’s SIT.

At night, went on to fix some bugs for my client.

I don’t think I would call this a productive day. Moving on. Time to sleep.

Here is a video which I thought is interesting. Well, I’m interested in medicine and the sciences, other than computers and technology.

Here I conclude my journal for today.

Daily Journal – Jun 29, 2017

This is my 89th journal.

Another day gone and June will soon be over. July approaches and it marks the last month I will be with my current company.

I had a psychiatrist appointment today in the morning. So I worked from home from 0735 to 0850, preparing the test documents. Then had a shower, took my things and left the house.

Arriving early at the Polyclinic meant that I had to wait for nearly half an hour before it was my turn.

After the session, I went for brunch at Subway before making my way to office. While at Subway, after eating, I actually went on to read some emails and send out one. Earlier on, I had called the tester (there was supposed to be a SIT test today) to check if he’s available. He told me he’s not free. Well, luckily, I called if not it will be a wasted trip. The test got rescheduled to tomorrow. I guess I will call the tester again tomorrow before making my way there. Just had to make sure.

So I went back to office, print out the documents and join my colleagues for lunch. After that, one of my colleague and I made our way to the customer’s office at Paya Lebar to do some work. I had some test data to prepare as well as cleaning up some of the test users that I will be using. Also synced up with my colleague on what he has implemented as next week onwards, he won’t be around. By the time he comes back to work, it would have been my last day with the company…I think.

Anyway, I have also been in talks with my friends about a project that we will be working on together on part-time basis. For now, all I can say is that it will be an app. But what kind is it, I guess, we will have to wait until we complete our market research and product validation.

In the mean time, I will be going on for courses, taking on part-time and freelance work just so that I don’t starve to death. Full-time work that will take up my whole day (e.g. 8.30am to 6pm) just isn’t what I want now. I mean, it doesn’t allow me to do whatever I want or explore. By the time I finish work, I will be so tired that I can’t do my stuff or take my courses. And if I do force myself to take those courses and do my things…well…I can foresee that it will be back to square one. Then, I would have just wasted a whole bunch of money going into therapy. At least now, I have slightly pulled myself out of depression and feel happier. I definitely don’t want to go back in.

And I’m not here to meet or live up to anyone’s but my own expectations. You can provide advice or share your opinion but at the end of it, it’s my own life. I decide which path I want to go.

One more thing, if I do decide that I will be a freelance developer, I’m not going to cheapen myself. My rate will go anywhere between $50 to $150 per hour. Either clients in Singapore pay the rate that I ask for or they can outsource and get those low end, piss-poor quality developers from South Asia or SEA to do for you. If it is the latter, then I don’t even want you as a client. You can piss off.

Here I conclude my journal for today.