We are runners through and through

These are the insightful words from Steve Jobs ‚ÄúYou can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards…”

Together with my 4 buddies, the 5 of us volunteered (prompted by my Bro in Christ, Chung Meng) in the Standard Chartered Marathon 2016, held on sunday, 4th December 2016. Our role was to serve water to the runners and cheering them on.

We cheered the runners on with “keep running, you are doing well”, “keep running”, “keep going”, “gambatte” (to cheer Japanese runners especially).

All it took was One encounter that led to a chain of events…

“Hello, Hoe san! It’s nice to see you again yesterday. I realized you because of your “gambatte”! It’s great cheering for runnersūüí™ūüėä”

The lady who called out to me was Kawabata san, my Japanese teacher whom taught me the Japanese language, back in March 2008 to sometime in 2009.

A day after the marathon, we conversed and the rest as we looked back, is history.

One year on.


A for Access, P for Point – 23/9/16

The story goes like this: my Xiaomi phone had gone bonkers, the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 phone which I had been using before the Xiaomi phone, was called into active service, after it was stood down in January 2015. But due to mishandle, the Note 2 was fried.

My Uncle gave his Samsung GT-I8150 to me to use.¬†I was unable to use this phone to surf the net, despite countless times trying to figure out the phone’s settings. The problem was getting frustrating.

By God’s timing, a few days ago, my buddies , Dani, David and me were having dinner together. David started talking about Raspberry Pi, wifi, server, Access Point (AP). This triggered me asking Dani for help to set up my GT-I8150 to surf the net. Dani then shared these “magic” words “mobile internet settings” to me. Google did its job.

The pictures below detail the steps taken.

Praise the Lord for fellowship with my brothers, just by being together out gains the things we learn.


1. Upon pressing the “Setting” button, this screen appears.


2. Select ‘Wireless and network” and you will be directed to this page.






3. From the previous picture of the screen grab, scroll down right to the bottom, press “Mobile networks”.


4. At this point, I had already completed several steps ahead. Here are the steps to get to this picture: a) From 3. above, press Access Point Names, b) At the bottom of the screen, press the left button, c) Select “New APN”.








5. For the data to enter into the required fields, see: https://apn-singapore.gishan.net/net_4_m1_internet_settings.php


6. Now the data connection of this mobile phone is set up, enabling it to surf the net.

A naughty phone, The mischief of the mini SIM card and… – 28/5/16 – Published on 31/5/16

It was a satisfaction well received. Perhaps I am not a tinkerer (at least not yet an expert) in building, creating or modifying things. But this was a certainly an exercise in problem solving, which I enjoyed.

This brought back memories (April 2016) of that time when my mummy asked me to repair the gate controller:
I thought maybe the battery was weak so when the brand new CR25 coin battery (B) were inserted to the back of the controller and the button in front was pressed > the LED which is supposed to light up green did not. After careful observation, it was discovered that after the batteries were inserted to the battery holder (BH) and the back of the controller was screwed back on, the contact between the B and BH was not tight > there was no electrical connection between the B & BH.

This gate controller had been in use for over 8 years and in that time, the BH had expanded and became loose and did not have a tight fit between it and the B.

A simple solution was found > inserting a small piece of paper folded a few times, between the B & BH. After the back of the controller was screwed back on, the front button pressed > LED lighted up green, the opening and closing of the gate went smoothly. A solution as simple as the insertion of the paper was the solution. Much encouragement and lesson learnt was also derived from the study and analysis of the possible root cause of the gate controller not working.

Now, back to the title of this blog:

The current phone (which I got it free, on a 2 year mobile phone contract in Jan 2015) which I am using,¬†started becoming cranky 3 weeks ago; it would reboot by itself, when it wanted to ‘torment’ me further, the phone would freeze, showing either the logo of the phone brand or the whole screen would “hibernate” in blue colour. This freeze state would last from a few minutes to an unknown amount of time. Sometimes this process would repeat itself, until “seemingly” normal usage returned to the phone. All these resulted in the phone being heated up very fast and felt very warm to the touch on the screen and also the back of the phone, at the area beside the phone camera lens. A fall out was also the battery power being drained out very fast > each occurrence of this “torment” led to the battery power percentage reducing by about 5%.

The phone would throw its tantrum at any time of the day and its awful frequency is hard to predict.

Dani and David, good buddies of mine had advised me to increase the internal memory of the phone (which is a pathetic 6GB), and I did so, by uninstalling some applications and removing some images from Facebook which had somehow found its way to the storage of my phone (perhaps there was some sync. I had done, without realising it). The internal memory increased from 700MB to 2.7GB.

The tantrumatic behaviour of the phone lessened in frequency and the freeze state duration had also reduced. However, 1 day later, it went back to the “unbearable” state.

Finally, I decided that maybe my previous Samsung Galaxy Note 2 phone (which I used from Jan 2013 to Jan 2015) should be called up for action, after being “frozen” for more than 16 months). The mini SIM card was inserted to the SIM card holder in the phone.
After powering up, there was an error message “No SIM card”. I removed and inserted the mini SIM card to the SIM card holder for another 2 times, but still the error message persisted. Thank God for google, after a few searches, I came across this article:

Why does my Samsung Galaxy Note 2 say “No SIM card” when I insert a SIM card…

and read the advises by Srinivas and Jaichander, tried it and it worked!

See pictures of what works:

DSCF7049 DSCF7051

(My buddy, David reminded me to insert paper and not card board between the mini SIM card and holder, so as to avoid the cardboard being jammed inside the holder.)

Finally the mini SIM card holder was detected and now I have more productive time to spend, including writing this blog.

We will meet soon.

Mobile Cafe Memories – 10th May 2016

New Zealand - Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre

12/5 > added Canada, France, Switzerland, Turkey, Hong Kong, China.

The small dragonfly diary is meant for moments like this.

I was manning the mobile cafe in an exhibition & convention centre in Singapore. There were both local Singaporean delicacies. e.g yam cakes, Siew Mais, vegetarian dumplings, chicken char siew buns, chilli crab bun, charcoal bun with salted egg and custard sauce  & western food. e.g various types of turkey, ham and cheese, salmon sandwiches and tortilla wraps, giant cookies, blueberry/chocolate/walnut muffins, salads, yoghurts & drinks available for purchase by these overseas business visitors who came from many countries around the world, e.g., USA, Canada, Germany, UK, Netherlands, Italy, France, Switzerland, Turkey, Australia, UAE, Israel, Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, China, Sri Lanka, India and Singapore, etc., to Singapore to attend a medical technology conference.

It was fun serving them and I imagined myself as the cafe owner serving my customers from around the world.
I felt in me, a mission, to recommend local delicacies to them, as much as possible.

Encountered some customers from the Netherlands (some of them know about 3D printing), took the opportunity to share with them that my friends and me like 3D printing and in the 3DP industry, Ultimaker of Netherlands is a popular brand.

Serving in this mobile cafe brought back memories of the time I worked in a cafe in Orchard Plaza in 1990. I remembered that I had many happy moments multitasking as a chef, waiter, cleaner, cashier, serving sandwiches, croissants, salads, soups, pizzas, hot & cold beverages to my customers. It was here that I experienced how if felt to have electric current flowing through your body.
This was around the onset on the 1st gulf war. One evening, a sailor on board ¬†a vessel in the US Navy patronised my cafe. He said he was bound for duty on a ¬†vessel headed for the Persian Gulf. We chit chatted & till today, I still remember this moment with the US Sailor. The name “Jason” stuck in me, though I can’t remember if the Sailor or ship’s name was Jason.

Back to the present, I thought to myself, the convention which the visitors are here for, are so high tech in nature, how do the people find passion in what they do?
YouTube sure has it way of finding what I need to read and presented the following video recommendation on my YouTube home page:
Stop searching for your passion | Terri Trespicio | TEDxKC

After watching the video, I realised that what Terri spoke of, portrayed my own thoughts very well. Just what I needed. Thank you Daddy God for the right place right time video and the circumstantial experience.

Thankful also to Daddy God  that all the guests whom I had the privilege to interact with,
are friendly and pleasant to chat with.

Having repeat customers who patronised the mobile cafe, also lifted up my spirit.

The story of our Lord Jesus Christ and the samaritan woman at the well (John 4) sprang up inside me. Jesus was energized when the woman drew from Him.

There was a guy from UK and he was just so energetic and happy in going about ordering food for his wife and himself. I am very happy when he bought the local food items I recommended for him and his wife.

A few customers asked for  croissants, which we did not have in our menu.

There was a lady¬† (looking at her name tag) and seeing that she hailed from Florida, USA, I asked whom her choice of the next President of USA is. With steadfastness, she replied “Hillary Clinton”. Mine was Donald Trump. That drew opposition. We enjoyed our moment of conversation.

With another gentleman, me: “you had a long day”. Smiles from both sides. Customer: “you too”.

All the above are precious memories to me, one which will play back beautiful music to me all the days of my life on earth.

The beginning of the Small Dragonfly writing

A note book from Sparkling Stars (South Korea).  [this is not a product endorsement, just wanted to credit the source of this nice and cute diary]

A note book from Sparkling Stars (South Korea).
[this is not a product endorsement, just wanted to credit the source of this nice and cute diary]

After lunch on 1st September 2014, my friend and me were walking in a bus interchange in Jurong East (Singapore). We came across a stall selling cute stickers, stick it pads, notebooks, etc and learnt from the stall owner, that all these products are from South Korea.
Hei, I thought this Small Dragonfly diary looks cute and will be a good companion for my words.

The Small Dragonfly has started to flap his wings…….