Saturday, September 27, 2008

One of Those Days

This article was wrongly published in the Wildgeeks.org blog. I have moved it here, where it belongs. Last night, as the title states, I was having "One of Those Days". An update though, today I have successfully fixed the cooler fridge problem... :-) Looks like it is going to be a great day today... LOL.


It is just one of those days that everything seems to go wrong!

This morning when I got to office, I could not log in to my Dell notebook. I could only see and move the mouse on a black screen. The day before, I did not shutdown and had only locked my Ubuntu desktop thinking that I could resume work immediately the next day.

Using another terminal to log in, I rebooted the notebook. Next thing I knew, it could not start-up as it could not find the boot loader! I got a colleague to help out. He managed to log in and did a "fsck" (file system check) and before we knew what happened, Gnome desktop could not load and the "home" directory went missing!

Turns out that my Ubuntu partition went and got corrupted on me. We managed to retrieve almost all of my important files in the "Lost and Found" directory. The complete day was totally wasted! I have not decided what I was gonna do with the notebook yet. Left it till Monday to figure it out. Sigh!

When I reach home today, my maid told me that the chiller fridge is acting up. I went to the wet kitchen and heard a terrible screeching sound coming from the chiller fridge! I switched off the fridge and decided to have a look.

Turned out that the screeching sound was coming from the cooling fan between the compressor and the condenser. The plastic bracket holding the fan blades to the dynamo broke and the fan blades were hitting the side of the condenser. And without the fan, the compressor and condenser would over heat... sigh!


The chiller fridge with all the fruits and vegetables removed.


After dismantling the sliding brackets, I managed to slide the compressors out.


I removed the whole fan bewteen the compressor and the condenser.


Another view of the fan.


The electrical power source in the fridge.


The condenser with the fan removed.

Tomorrow was supposed to be my day of cycling with the guys. But now it looked like I have to spend the morning hunting for fan parts before the shops close at noon!

Darn it! Just when I published this post, I realised that I posted in the WRONG blog!! Niah mah!!!! What a jinxed day!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Jordan Learned to Ride in 3 Days

After Joel has successfully learned to ride a bicycle using the gliding method, I decided to get Jordan to learn to ride as well. But first, I had to find a bicycle that fit this 6 years old's size. For his age, he was extremely small in stature... LOL. His 4 years old sister was almost the same height as him.

I told Joe (my colleague) about my success in teaching Joel to ride and my predicament of getting a bike small enough or Jordan. Joe said that he had a small bike at home and that Jordan could have it. That evening, I went to Joe's house in Sri Petaling and picked up the bike.

After I reached home, I immediately started dismantling the trainer wheels and the pedals. Unfortunately, that night my wife had to work late and they arrived home late at about 8:00 pm. In any case, I got Jordan to try out the bike. I taught him to push the bike with both of his feet and then try to glide on the bike with the forward momentum. He spent about an hour doing that until his mother started to make noise... LOL.

The next night, Jordan started to glide a fair distance with one push. When he went on a downhill slope, he could glide all the way down. Success! Pedaling would be the next milestone.

The next day, Saturday, I managed to get my kids home around 4:30 pm. After their customary nap, Joel and Jordan were pestering me to let them go out and ride.

Early that morning, I had gone on a cycling hash to the trails in The Rubber Research Institute between Subang and Sungai Buloh. Together with Joe and the rest of the Wildgeeks, we had a great a hash! But I was a quite tired.

Anyway, by 7:00 pm, Jordan was pedaling like there was no tomorrow. His elder brother, Joel, was quite encouraging.


Jordan on the "new" bike.


Joel and Jordan on their bikes.


Joel was over confident. He skidded on the sand and fell down.


Joel's little injury on his knee.


Jordan, Jodene and Joel with a damaged pride... LOL.


Jordan pedals for the first time.


Jordan confidently pedaling down the slope with the brother coaching him.

More videos here.

And now, my 4 years old daughter has started pestering me to teach her. Unfortunately, this Sunday evening has started raining and I could not take them out cycling. Lets see what tomorrow brings... LOL. Next weekend, I will get their elder sister to take them cycling.



Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Finally, Joel Learned to Ride a Bicycle!

After my last blog post, "Its not a Bike, It's Like a Bike," I have been wanting to get Joel to learn to ride a bicycle using the same "pedal-less" method.


Notice that the bike's pedal had been removed.

So today, I removed the training wheels and the pedals on Joel's bike. Then I told him to use both his legs to push the bike forward. As the bike moves forward, I told him to lift up his legs and roll forward on the momentum.

Within 2 tries, he managed to roll his bike downhill without using his feet to touch the ground! The next challenge was to get him to move forward by pedaling. And so, I installed back the pedals and got him pedaling within the first try!

Like any father seeing his child learn to do something for the first time, I was very proud of him.

Now Joel will be able to go riding with his elder sister, Nicole, instead of just watching on the road side... :-)


Jordan and Jodene standing by their elder brother.


I got him to give this confident pose... LOL.


Jodene pointing at Joel.

video
A video of Joel rolling down the hill on his bike.

And now Jordan and Jodene are bugging me to get them a small size bike so that they can learn as well... and it is no surprise that Joel is looking forward to riding his bike tomorrow.

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