Archive for November, 2011
Vivien and Yang were married early this month. I get to know both of them from Vivien’s sister, Mivian and they are on the loveliest couples I have ever had the pleasure of meeting.
Vivien comes from a Baba and Nyonya family. As you will see, I’ve included some pics of the family and friends wearing beautiful Nyonya Kebaya, and a pic of delicious Nyonya Pulut Tekan (glutinous rice in blue and served with Kaya) with Nyonya Kuih Lapis (red layer cake), which normally prepared for Nyonya weddings.
Congratulation and thank you Vivien and Yang for inviting me to be a part of your big day. It was absolutely beautiful with lots of fun and laughter. I wish you both nothing but the best in your journey through marriage and many blessings.
Below are some of my favorite pictures.
May all beings be happy.
[source: Sin Chew Daily, http://mykampung.sinchew.com.my/node/167554?tid=6]
HONG KONG — One of Asia’s most prestigious hotel chains said Monday it would stop selling shark fin from January, in a move hailed as a historic breakthrough by campaigners to protect the threatened predators.
The owner of the Peninsula Hotels group said the decision was made “in recognition of the threat facing the global shark population and in line with the company’s sustainability vision”.
“The Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels Ltd., parent company of The Peninsula Hotels, today announced that it will stop serving shark fin at all its group operations, effective 1 January 2012,” the company said in a statement.
The company will honour banquet bookings involving shark fin products made prior to November 21, it added. Shark fin soup is an expensive staple at wedding parties and business banquets in the Hong Kong hotel.
Peninsula operates nine hotels including in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Beijing, Tokyo and New York.
Chief executive officer Clement Kwok said: “By removing shark fin from our menus, we hope that our decision can contribute to preserving the marine ecosystem for the world’s future generations.
“As Asia’s oldest hotel company, we also hope that our decision will inspire other hospitality companies to do the same and that our industry will play a role in helping to preserve the biodiversity of our oceans.”
The ban was announced as the European Commission called for a full ban on shark finning at sea — the practice of slicing off the valuable fins and throwing the body overboard to drown.
Environmental activists have long campaigned for governments to ban or severely restrict the sale of shark fin, commonly used in soup which is regarded as a delicacy and health tonic across much of Asia, especially China.
WWF-Hong Kong says the consumption of shark fins is a driving factor behind the threat to shark populations, with more than 180 species considered threatened in 2010 compared with only 15 in 1996.
An individual serving of shark fin soup includes about 30 grams (one ounce) of fin, and a 12-person bowl sells for HK$1,080 (about $140).
A kilogram (two pounds) of premium dried fin can fetch up to HK$10,000 on the street in Hong Kong, or as little as HK$200 for fins of lesser quality.
The demand is such that Hong Kong is the global focus of the shark fin trade, with WWF estimating that around half of the world?s fin catch passes through the city.
“Hong Kong is the global shark fin capital,” WWF shark conservation programme officer Silvy Pun said, adding that this made Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels’ decision all the more important.
“We think that this is a very brave act and it can inspire others to follow,” she said.
Claire Nouvian, founder of the Bloom Association for marine conservation, said: “I view this as a historical tipping point in Hong Kong and sure hope it will spur change amongst other leading hotels in Hong Kong and its vicinity.”
About 73 million sharks are killed every year, with Hong Kong importing about 10,000 tonnes of fins annually for the past decade, WWF said.
Shark fin soup is regarded as an important status symbol for hosts wanting to demonstrate their wealth in Chinese banquets, and is believed to have various health benefits in traditional medicine.
A Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels spokeswoman would not comment on how much shark fin the chain sold in a normal month. She said commercial considerations were not central to the decision.
“Shark fin is only a small part of the food and beverage selection that we offer to our guests,” she told AFP, asking not to be named.
“Obviously the adoption of this policy will have some revenue implications but this is a challenge and we are happy to acknowledge that we are doing the best thing for the environment.”
November to January is seen as the peak season for shark fin consumption in Hong Kong, because of end-of-year office parties and a number of “lucky days” which are popular wedding dates.
The European Commission called Monday for all vessels fishing in EU waters and EU vessels fishing elsewhere “to land sharks with the fins still attached”, in a proposal that must be adopted by parliament and 27 member states in order to become law.
EU nations account for 14 percent of the world’s shark catches.
by Stephen Coates (AFP)
There once was a little boy who had a bad temper.
His father gave him a bag of nails and told him that every time he lost his temper, he must hammer a nail into the back of the fence.
The first day the boy had driven 37 nails into the fence. Over the next few weeks, as he learned to control his anger, the number of nails hammered daily gradually dwindled down.
He discovered it was easier to hold his temper than to drive those nails into the fence.
Finally the day came when the boy didn’t lose his temper at all. He told his father about it and the father suggested that the boy now pull out one nail for each day that he was able to hold his temper.
The days passed and the young boy was finally able to tell his father that all the nails were gone. The father took his son by the hand and led him to the fence.
He said, “You have done well, my son, but look at the holes in the fence. The fence will never be the same. When you say things in anger, they leave a scar just like this one. You can put a knife in a man and draw it out. It won’t matter how many times you say I’m sorry, the wound is still there. A verbal wound is as bad as a physical one.”
As William Arthur Ward once said,
“It is wise to direct your anger towards problems – not people;
to focus your energies on answers – not excuses.”