13 July 2009

In Ipoh - my feelings

Ipoh is a nice enough town (or should I say city). I am not unfamiliar with it as my grandparents lived in a little town just outside Ipoh.

But having to treat Ipoh as my city now, that was something different. I consulted my inlaws on where to go to buy what, which roads were best to take, how to find tutors - all the usual questions you would expect to ask being new in town. Unfortunately, my parents-in-law still work and have a very busy life, so I had to rely on my husband's brother's wife who doesn't work and takes care of my inlaws' household for advice.

This was the least pleasant part of starting life in Ipoh. To put it simply, my sister in law and I don't get along (surprise surprise!!). It was never deliberate on my part and I can honestly say I try to be nice to her, to try to connect each time we meet, but all my efforst are met with her stony, sullen, no eye contact, monosyllabic responses. I literally have to prod and pry information out of her. For example:

Me: Where can I go to buy stationery for the kids?
Sis-in-law: Mubarak.
Me: (holding on to my temper) Uh, where is Mubarak?
Sis-in-law: Old Town.
Me: (grinding my teeth now) Oh. And which part of Old Town?

Helpful huh? I don't think I got depressed. Thank God I am not prone to it. But I did feel very alone and you know, my husband is really from Mars. He did not notice, or maybe didn't think it was a big deal, that I was having some issues adjusting. It would have helped a lot if he talked to me about the move, how I felt, took me under his wing to show me Ipoh. But noooo. My hubby is the type who likes his wife to be independent, you know. All that nicey, romantic, supportive stuff fades after marriage I gues.

So yeah, I did get snappy and my hubby and I had big monumental fights in Ipoh. Seriously. And the renovation work on the house was driving me nuts! And my hubby is control freak and fuss-pot supreme. "Why is there a scratch on the wooden floor?", "Did you notice the metal grill wasn't done right?", "There's some stain on the marble floor". Give me a break. All day long I hear drilling and knocking, workmen trudging through the house, dust and cement all over, following the workers around and giving them old newspapers and rags (to the point we ran out of rags and I had to cut up my older T-shrts) endless cleaning, finding that my brooms were going missing daily, fetching my son to school and back on unfamiliar roads (I found a better route on my own - no thanks to you know who).

And you know, now that I don't work, I feel this control issue. Lilke I don't have any. When I earned my own money, I had a voice, authority. Now, do I? I have to check with my hubby on anything to do with the house. Then he says, but you can have your opinion, it's just that I may not agree with you all the time. Great. On the other hand, he says to me to be independent and take charge. And when I do, and when he doesn't agree with the outcome, we have our fights and he says "Why couldn't you have checked with me first? Is it so hard?" Behind their facade, I think all men are MCPs, control freaks and have huge egos.

Thank God for email. I emailed to my friends a lot and that helped me to vent. They gave words of support and advice. It really helped. Never disconnect with your friends. I miss my Mommy!!


  1. Hi, I just came across your blog through your 'Bee Gaik' post and came to read on about your move to Ipoh.
    I am a so-called Ipoh girl. If you do need any help at all with anything, you may email me. I will try to help, although I am back only back in Ipoh during the weekend cos I work in PJ.


  2. Hi Lai, thank you so much for your kind offer. Oh you work in PJ? Where do you live in PJ, what do you do? It would be nice to have another friend in Ipoh - let me know when you are back in Ipoh.

  3. ex-KL girl.. (since I have no idea what your name is!),
    I am back in Ipoh on most weekends and usually it would be a time to catch up on errands and taking care of my 2 dogs!
    I live in Mutiara Damansara, that's near BU where you used to stay, right?
    Yeah, do give me a yell if you really need any kind of assistance at all - be it just a question on where to get dog food (I love your 3 dogs)! Although I am not too familiar with Ipoh myself (cos been working out of state most of the time), I do have friends who know every nook and corner!
    Do call me 'peng', that's my cyber name! I used to blog, only for awhile, stopped some weeks ago. Cannot appropriate my time, thus got to let go..

  4. Hi Peng, I suppose we keep in touch via my blog? Glad you like the pix of my dogs. I just started this blog, don't know how long it will last. What dogs do you have? I buy our dog food from the pet shop next to the UOB bank. Hope to see you one weekend...

  5. Hi there. I came across your blog from another blog :) I am from Ipoh but residing in KL. I understand what you are going through. I have moved many times - Ipoh to Toronto, Toronto to KL. *headache* Hope you are more familiar with Ipoh now. One good thing - no traffic jam and going from one place to another is so easy :) I go back to Ipoh a few times a year..just to enjoy the food and visit my relatives :)

    BTW, you can get the stationeries from those shops behind the old Capital theater ;)


  6. Hi Barbara, thanks for writing and visiting. So you live in KL now. Sounds like you're a real mover :) Yeah, there is less jam here in Ipoh, but quieter and less shopping. Hey if you come back to Ipoh let me know and we can meet up for white coffee and roast pork!

  7. white coffe at greentown..hehe
    just cross by..want to know about ipoh...ask me..huhu

  8. Hey there!! I am a SAHM residing in Ipoh... Next time if you need any directions just give me a call. I have been residing here since...forever la... LOL!

    Take care!!

    Agnes Loke

  9. Hi Agnes! Thanks for reading my blog, and thanks for offering to help guide me around Ipoh. How long's forever?!?