Archive for the 'married life' Category

Words of Wisdom for Wives

I am reading a book by Laura Doyle, The Surrendered Wife. It is such a cute book, full of wisdomised phrases which supposedly will help us wives to get a more fulfilled and peaceful marriage.  I can’t resist to share …

“If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all” – laura doyle’s mom

“Some people find fault as if it were buried treasure” – francis o’walsh

“In marriage, as in nature, water seeks its own level: we marry men who match us” – laura doyle

“You see an awful lot of smart guys with dumb women, but you hardly see a smart woman with a dumb guy” – erica jong

“Try to want what you have, instead of spending your strength trying to get what you want” – abraham l. feinberg

“The only worse thing than a man you can’t control is a man you can” – margo kaufman

“Wisdom is divided into two parts: a) having a great deal to say, and b) not saying it” – anonymous

“I often regret that I have spoken, never that I am silent” – publilius syrus

“You must be the change you wish to see in the world” – mahatma gandhi

“To put the world right in order, we must first put the nation in order; to put the nation in order, we must first put the family in order; to put the family in order, we must first cultivate our personal life; we must first set our hearts right” – confusius

“I praise loudly, I blame softly” – catherine II of russia

“The supreme happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved” – victor hugo 

“A man is already halfway in love with any woman who listens to him” – brendan francis

“Husbands are awkward things to deal with; even keeping them in hot water will not make them tender’ – mary buckley

“Never go to bed angry. Stay up and fight” – phyllis diller

“To love someone deeply gives you strength. Being love by someone deeply gives you courage” – lao tzu

They are all good, if can be put in practice. 🙂


hardcore love


When I watch love movies, it makes me all warm inside. It ‘shows’ that happy ending does happen. But … Whenever people share their thoughts and dissatisfaction on their marriages, I wonder what do we really want in our marriage? Maybe our unhappiness of our marriages are caused by love stories we read or watch.

It is by definition a union of two people. Even when we are alone by ourselves, we are constantly faced with battles within. Doubts are everyday life. Should I do this, or do that? What if I go now, then what will happen?

When two people merge, it’s like war every minute. Said or unsaid. I do admire marriage couple who stay together everyday, live together and work together.

After two years of marriage, I am still working on it. Sometimes it is quite impossible to know what he is thinking or what he wants me to think or do. When one of us got it wrong, it takes a lot of energy and emotion to explain or to make it right. It seems to me, people are less understanding and less forgiving when it comes to their loved ones.

So there are three things that hold true for me now.

Expectation is not good. It’s ok to expect. Don’t make it into obsession.

Compromise is the key. When it just seems unbearable, just compromise, as in turn blind eye and deaf ear.

Less spoken is less trouble. Our words are our tiger. Beware. Be cautious.

In the end, love movies are the one thing that corrupt us all. Happy ending is not that easy. It is hard work. ‘Happy ending’ is relative. It’s full of terms and conditions!

If we want the ‘happy ending’ a la chick flicks, we will suffer for sure!

for the love of wasp !

My husband (let’s call him D) loves old wasps. Not the bug. Piaggio’s Vespas. He collects them also rides around town. If you see a white guy scooting around in an old scooter here, it’s him.

For me, not so much. I don’t even know how to ride a bike! (yup, do judge me if you want, but I tried, it didn’t work). When I was little, Pai tried to teach me how to ride a bike, she held the bike when I paddled away, fell everytime. She gave up, so did I.

I had no idea Vespas are such a big a deal. Anyway .. D has soft spot for Congo Vespas. In 1960, Indonesian government sent peace-keeping troops to Congo. When the soldiers came back, they were given given a Vespa each. It is the 1961 type with big round light. This is what triggered the fanatic movement of scooter lovers across the country. So the Congo Vespa is most specifically only applied in Indonesia. I have not heard it anywhere else.

He got two of the Congos and one Tsunami Vespa. The last one has quite a history, an Aceh family of 4 survived the 2002 tsunami by running away from the tidal waves on this particular vespa to the higher ground. D bought it from the family, they upgraded the ride to a Honda bike. 


D and the tsunami vespa


D and the congos


weirdest immigration law

This post is about what happened between me, my husband and Indonesian Immigration Department at the Medan Polonia International Airport.

For those who live in the country of inequality full of corrupt government officials, I can safely say that we actually accept that as a fact of life.

When I was a little girl, I would ask my parents, why did we have to pay that guy? Why did we have to do this or that? That was not what we learned at school. My parents explained to me that was how they work, we as minorities had to go along with them.

Years have passed; things are still going that way. I am married to an American. He just can’t understand why we put up with that. From the time I lived in Adelaide for the whole four years, never once I encountered things that we deal with everyday here. So I guess in a way I can see why this upset him.

Because of the ridiculous immigration law here, he can’t be sponsored by me to stay here as my spouse. The law doesn’t recognize permanent residency status for foreigners. You either have to work here or you are a tourist. My husband is a freelance consultant who travels country to country, so he doesn’t have work permit in Indonesia. When he comes home, he will use 30-day entry tourist visa.

Things were going smoothly until last month, a certain immigration officer recognized him from leaving to Penang and back again on the same day to get his passport stamped and renew his entry visa. They told him that that was the last time they were letting him do that and suggesting him to get social cultural visa (which, by the way, only lasts two months and we have to spend at least 2 weeks working on it). Since this month is going to be his last month before starting his new contract, we decided not to pursue with that and just try out our luck one more time.


Today, I got somebody to ask the immigration officer of the Medan Airport whether my husband could fly out and come back again on tourist visa just one last time. He suggested we talk to the head of immigration here in Medan and we might need to “contribute” a bit to him. Of course, my husband would not hear of it. He thinks if he pays them now, it will be a bad precedent for other foreigners who will come in the future! Which is true, and I agreed with him. So we decided not to pay and he had to leave the country in three hour notice.

He has the right to use the 30 day tourist visa to visit his wife. He does not abuse his visa by working here. He should not be denied entry to a country just because somebody needs some “coffee-money”. He reported this incident to American Consulate Office in Medan, and they told him that they will investigate this.

Mixed couples are faced with great legal difficulties here in Indonesia. I just don’t know why they haven’t got to sort it out. It definitely shows you how you treat foreigners and how you value citizens of other countries. Mixed couple with one spouse working in other country will definitely bring in foreign reserves, wont they? They work and send money and eventually spend the money here in the country which in return will benefit the country..

Somebody needs to wake up and address this issue.

This is a long post and I don’t normally do heavy topics. But this has been troubling my family for two years now. I hope something will change in the future.

dear wives, please read this

what do you think? i think i have failed from the first dot point all the way to the last one.

thank goodness i was not married in 1956!