Penang, Malaysia (short trip)

Penang 12 November 2016

I’ve been visiting Penang almost every year and thought that I would not be able to as J didn’t want to go again (he went on a business trip there earlier this year).

I got a friend who was keen to go, and we had a complimentary hotel stay at Batu Ferringhi  so off we go! #muchexcitement

The trip was short so we didn’t get to enjoy the hotel facilities other than the comfortable bed, we couldn’t wake up in the morning.

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Torture commute!

Oh dear, why am I writing just one post a month? 

I’m just so lazy and tired to write something due to work, apologies. I wake up around 5.30am to prepare for work and will usually reach home 7.30pm on a good day. 

And by good day, I meant smooth traffic and a place to sit on the public bus.

But I’m not referring to this as the torture commuting. The torture is traveling from Johor to Singapore in the morning. 


These days, the traffic jam starts way before crossing the Malaysia customs. And this was at 6am on a Monday. 

By the time we reached my workplace in Yishun, it was already 7.50am. That was about 2 hours stuck at the customs + travel time from Woodlands to Yishun. 

Sometimes I wonder if the ICA (Immigration & Checkpoints Authority of Singapore) knows of this situation every morning. 

Have they actually travelled this way before? 

And in fact, the jams weren’t caused by too many cars at the causeway or too little counters.

It was simply caused by buses and lorries blocking the road. Just ’cause their vehicles are tooooooo big and long. 

Could they have done something about it? 

Like stationing someone to direct traffic? 

Or give staggered timing for these big vehicles to enter?

Food for thought, ICA. 

This has been going on for more than half a year, I think. 

And sometimes I feel that the Malaysian customs officers are laughing at Singapore for their lack of efficiency in “chopping passports” since the vehicles are always bottleneck from their checkpoints. 

Working retail

While I was not working for three months (I left my full time job in March 2016), I got bored at home because I didn’t travel. J went to India for 2 weeks and didn’t want me to follow because he felt it was not safe for me, even when I offered to stay in the hotel room all day 😦 so I looked for a part time job. 

This took place at the end of May and I worked for 5 days, as we were going to Bangkok in June, and I was starting my new job after our Bangkok trip. 

I responded to an ad posted on gumtree. You can find a lot of ads looking for part time help on gumtree, ranging from beauty advisor to warehouse helper. 

Why I chose gumtree:

My friend, holding a full time job, was looking for some extra income. She responded to an ad and it was posted directly by a pushcart owner. She was working week nights and one weekend. The owner was flexible and my friend was rather happy working there. She was very lucky.

Why a beauty advisor?

I like dolling up and I do know quite a bit about skincare and cosmetics. I also have a friend who is working part time at Clarins and she really likes working there.  

I responded to an ad looking for a beauty advisor posted by a recruitment agency called HROne. Then I realized that a lot of such ads are posted by recruitment agencies. Obviously, I’ve never heard of this agency. I have to admit that I don’t usually encounter recruitment agencies so I only heard of Kelly Services, Adecco and Recruit Express. 

I was told to go to their office for an interview the next day via SMS. I did. 

When I took the lift up to their office, I was beyond shocked. There were about 10-15 people waiting outside their office, mainly teenages and a couple of aunties. I was apprehensive. I don’t know why, I just felt that it was beneath me in a way. Nevertheless, I texted the girl whom I communicated with the day before. We went through the normal procedures of filling up a hiring form and had an interview. I also met with the hiring manager of this big, international beauty brand in her office. Then I went back to HROne office to sign a contract for my 5 days part time job. All in a day. 

A few days later, I started working at the counter of this brand at a shopping centre – OG. 

Working with the brand itself was okay. BUT working in OG really sucks. Big time. 

They are so inflexible with their stupid rules:

  1. You are not allowed to take anything with you when you go to the counter except for a water bottle. So, no mobile phones.
  2. No lockers provided. You just put your bag in a shelf. How safe can that be, seriously? You simply “surrender” your phone and wallet to the security guard and a number tag will be given to you. Present the number tag to collect your wallet and phone when you go on your break/end of shift. 
  3. A $20 deposit is needed for a pass. You use the pass to clock in and out. You get your $20 back when you return the pass. You would need to clock out when you want to use the toilet at the staff room. Stupid much. I ended up using the toilet once a day only – when I go for my break. 
  4. I succumb to temptation and wanted to buy a face cleanser by another brand that was recommended by one of the full time beauty advisor in OG. She offered to use her staff discount (part timers are not entitled to staff discount). However, staff can only use their staff discount for purchases on Monday to Wednesday. They then collect the goods one day after. It was on a Thursday so I said forget it, I was not really hard up for the discount and said I would just purchase it at the original price. I was told I couldn’t and if I want to, I had to ask someone who is not a staff to help me to buy. Wtf. 

After my first day, I kept asking why the fuck am I so stupid to accept this godamn retail job. I didn’t want to be irresponsible so I completed the 5 days of part time work. I texted the recruitment agency that I would not continue with it. They usually want a part timer to work for at least a month and I guess they made exceptions for me because they were truly desperate. 

One big pushing factor that I felt “abused” was this girl I paired up, R. She had been working for this brand for slightly more than a year. 

On my first day, she went for a 2 hours lunch break. Breaks are supposed to be an hour long and she simply took advantage of me. 

She then told me to have dinner at 5pm so she could end her shift at 7pm. Who the hell eats dinner at 5pm?? I wasn’t hungry so I had a cup of cafe latte at McDonald’s. When I return, she asked what I had for dinner and I said I drank a cup of coffee because I wasn’t feeling hungry. Her immediate response was “oh, you don’t have money to eat?” just because I haven’t been working for some time / looking for a full time job. 

To R, my coffee cost more than $3 a cup and I could buy a packet of rice with that money if I want to. 

She is so full of herself that I calculated the miserable peanuts of a salary on my first day and I could be earning three times more on a regular job, why am I dealing with this kind of shit.

I suffered for a miserable sum of $200. Which I blew it on beauty products in a day. 

BUT….

It was an eye-opening experience for me. And in return, I landed my dream job. I also met one of the nicest beauty advisor from this brand, who offered to use her staff discount to buy products for me and even treated me lunch. 

Life is fair after all. 

Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia

J and I did an impromptu 3 days 2 nights trip to Kota Kinabalu in April. It started out as a casual remark to J that I wanted to visit Kuching. And he said “No, let’s go KK instead.”

So we gambled on which airfare was cheaper and off we go!

I booked through AirAsiaGo and paid about RM1,000 for airfare and accommodation. Since the trip was last minute, we expected tickets to be expensive.

The flight from Johor Senai Airport was about 2.5 hours, almost similar to flying to Bangkok. What was weird though, we had to pass through immigration at Kota Kinabalu. Up till now, J is still baffled “We are all Malaysians, why do I need to pass by immigration?” Same same but different.

We rented a car and it cost less than RM100 for 3 days. We didn’t book through Hertz or Avis as it was very expensive. I left J to decide on the rental since he will be the one driving. It wasn’t a proper rental company so no insurance were covered. Thank God it was a smooth trip for us!

With a little difficulty when we arrived (we couldn’t find the car rental guy since no proper booth at the airport), we finally collected the rented car and arrived at our hotel – Oceania Hotel. But we were soooooo early, we couldn’t check in.

When we finally checked in, the room was lovely. The hotel have an ocean theme, thus the name. Almost like a boutique hotel but no frills. For two nights, I thought it was pretty decent.

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Chengdu, China 1.2

From my previous post, I showed the street food of Chengdu. Now let’s move on to the restaurants~

One of my favorite restaurants is 海底捞 haidilao. This is a chain hotpot/steamboat restaurant so you can find this everywhere in China. They have three outlets here in Singapore too.

They are well known to provide meticulous service to their customers. Should there be a queue, they provide snacks, desserts, drinks and even a manicure service while you wait for your turn. This is the same for all their outlets worldwide.

I went to the same outlet in Chengdu three times during our two weeks stay. Apart from it being near our hotel, what I liked most was that all the staff we encountered had some form of personal touch.


We have a wider range of varieties here in Singapore. In Chengdu, they have their local specialties. Like rabbit meat 😲😲😲 of course I didn’t try. I won’t touch more on this brand as it is already well-known and there are plenty of reviews on this.

J also brought me to a local chain of 麻辣火锅 mala huoguo (spicy-numb hotpot).

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Chengdu, China

I got lazy during the past couple of days. I slacked around and went out spending good money on good food. Really shouldn’t be doing this when I am not earning good money.

Anyway, since the brother will be out for the whole day, I can hog his computer! I don’t have a computer because I thought we use computers for work the whole day, I don’t want to be facing one when I’m at home.

So let’s talk about China.

I kinda like China. I like the food and their relatively low cost of living.

I accompanied J (for Johorean) to Chengdu for his business trip some time back. I was apprehensive about the trip because I’ve never been to Chengdu. I much prefer Shanghai as I am familiar with the city. I was going to be alone most of the time so I need to know my way around.

Well, I fell in love with Chengdu! I really like the food there 😀 It was unexpected because I know Sichuan food meant that a lot of their food is oily, extremely spicy, and really spicily numb! Google Sichuan Mala broth and you’ll know why!

It helped that we were staying in the financial district in Chengdu so everywhere was almost accessible. Approximately 10 minutes walk to Chendu shopping district, Chunxi Road (春熙路), 10 walks to Chengdu Lan Kwai Fong, 15 minutes walk to my favorite steamboat chain Haidilao (海底捞火锅) at Sunny Xinye shopping mall (阳光新业). There is also a food street next to our hotel.

Chunxi Road (春熙路), day and night

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I created an Instagram account

I created an Instagram account so I can have that Instagram widget at the corner haha

I thought, since I take so many pictures of all the food I’m eating, why not share them?

If you’re like me:

  1. Don’t mind travelling for good food
  2. Eat almost anything, everything
  3. Feels that life is too short to waste your money and calories on yucky food

Check out our Instagram.

We traveled to a few places so I’ll be posting food from anywhere. Hopefully I don’t get too bored with this anytime soon.

Just a short introduction.

Hello there!

If you happen to stumble by my humble blog, welcome. Thank you for reading this while I got bored at home.

Bored because I am currently unemployed but actively searching for the right/dream job.

If you popped by the “About” section prior to reading this, you would know why the blog title is “Singaporean Johorean”. Otherwise ↓↓↓

I am Priscilla, a Singaporean.
My other half is a Johorean, thus the title "Singaporean Johorean".

I live in Singapore, while my other half works in Singapore, lives in Johor, Malaysia. He commutes to work by car everyday. Some Singaporean might find it absurd but actually many Johoreans do that! Or Singaporeans living in Johor. They commute either by car, motorcycle or public transport. And even by car, it could be their own car or car pooling (which is a rather good business idea if you ask me). Oh! And there are primary school students who would come to Singapore to study. They have their own transport, usually in the form of a passenger van.

While we were still working in the same company, I used to go back with the boy to Johor almost daily. We get a “great show” every morning, in terms of queue cutting, drivers that don’t give way, just to name a few. It is like a competition every morning for people who travel using this method every day. We can only thank Lady Luck that we could start and end work late (as long as we clock sufficient working hours).

Well, I guess all good things must come to an end because the itchy backside me went to switch jobs and I lose this privilege. I needed to start work on time. Like on the dot at 8:30am. To make things worse, both of us were working in the East! All the major expressways in Singapore would face a lot of traffic at this hour. We had to leave his house early. And by early, it would meant at 4-5am.

Initially, this plan was ‘perfect”. We would reach my office at 6-7am, take a short rest, have a quick breakfast then I would report to work at 8am. As time went by, the amount of cars in the Causeway and Second Link multiplied, this plan didn’t work anymore. We would leave home at 5am and ended up reaching my office at 9am 😦

I would then only go back with the boy on weekends. Even so, every Monday was tough. Compared to other weekdays, there are relatively more cars commuting to Singapore on Monday mornings.

I’ve only talked about entering Singapore. So many times, we would also be stuck in traffic when leaving Singapore.

So I left my job after about a year.

I was tired with all the traffic jams, rigid working hours (though I had to admit my boss made exceptions for me) and of course, politics in the office.