Working Till Dark

I remember mentioning to my American colleagues when I was working in Loveland last winter: “It’s quite depressing to work in America during winter. It makes you feel like you are working overtime every single day!

I mean, this is the color of the sky you will see the moment you get out of the office.

5.00PM sky in Colorado

The colleague replied: “You get used to it eventually. But yeah, I guess it is a good experience for you guys. You won’t experience this in Penang.”

Yeah, well.. I’m not so sure about that..

When I stepped out of the office at 8.00PM last night

We do get similar experiences alright? And the reason is also due to seasonal change. In America, it is because of the winter season. In Penang, it is because of intensely heavy workload season. Really, if you are an engineer in Penang (or anywhere else in Asia really), there are only 2 seasons in your life: heavy workload season and intensely heavy workload season.

And it’s funny that I behave differently. When I was in Loveland, I feel depressed to eat out when I see the dark skies. So I went back to the hotel to cook a simple meal or sometimes have fruits for dinner.

When I’m in Penang however, I feel depressed to go home and cook when I see the dark skies. And I feel even more depressed that I am working late again. So I eat out. Like I did at OldTown last night.


Don’t judge me, this plate of thing is in fact the healthiest meal option in OldTown. There’s real vegetables in the plate. Better than having those nasi lemak rendang or french toast with absolutely no vegetables at all.

I think to improve my health further, I need to move to some place with four seasons in a year. 🙄


  1. I wanted to cry when I read your post. I miss those days when the sky was dark at 3pm during Winters at my college. Somedays I had stomp across the muddy snow to catch the subway. So fun!

    • Hmm, I don’t feel that problem with the outlets over here. I guess since they are a franchise, sometimes it depends on the individual outlet owners to maintain their hygiene.

  2. Last time when I was still working in an office, sometimes I had to go back office during weekends to do overtime work and I work until around 11pm, alone in the office, really admire my “guts”

  3. Eh recently it’s getting dark real early, as early as 7.10pm! The skies look like 8pm at 7-ish.. Not a fan of Old Town, but will still go there once a while.. I remembered going there with hubby and the kids for dinner – 2 nasi lemak, 1 kai si hor fun, 1 toast and drinks cost RM60+, almost 70.. *faint*

    • Sounds about right for Old Town prices. They charge 16% taxes, so generally if you have a meal there, it’s RM 15 – RM 20 per person.
      Papparich is worse though, if you go to there, it would be closer to RM 100 I guess. Nasi lemak set for RM 20-ish @.@

      • i jst been to Papparich 2 days ago…pricewise almost like Old Town…In Old Town the portion is smaller but comparing the ‘worthness’, Papparich served bigger portion but slightly expensive price. Yea, averagely RM20 per person to eat until full.

        • Hmm, I never felt the portions are bigger in Papparich, it is just that they give acar and crackers (which I hardly bother anyway) to go with their signature meals. Maybe it is just me.

      • I think it has been a long time since you have been to Paparich. I agree with NuxV, the portion at Paparich is bigger and the food is tastier too. I have been to both franchise recently.

        • Well, to be honest, you are right. I haven’t order their main course in ages. I do yumcha in Paparich quite frequently when I balik kampung, but it is always drinks and snacks. I mean no snacks. Oops..

  4. I read somewhere that Malaysia is one of those countries with high statistics on being Obese! That explains why our unhealthy health.. hahahaa…

    • Depends on where we compare with, but I do agree. I think Malaysians are generally obese, but we don’t have too many extreme obese cases. If you go to the US, you will be able to see people who walk around with an oxygen filter pack strapped onto them, or people who sits in wheelchairs not because of disability but because of obesity. I find that we are generally fat, but the Americans are either very fit or very fat. At least that’s what I feel when I was there..

  5. yes, you are right.. in Malaysia, we always work till the sky gets dark, all year round and not only during winter time like your US counterparts!! staying up late is somehow the Asian culture huh??

    oooh.. i love those fruits for dinner!! and Old Town, hmmmmm~~~

  6. Well, I agree with you that that dish with vegetables is a better option than those without. Talking about getting dark early, I wonder how it would be like to stay in a country where it is dark like for the whole day for a few months, like in Iceland (I think).

  7. In some professions there is really no choice. Like auditors or architects or lawyers, it is part and parcel of the job. Rushing deadlines during the peak period and leaving office at midnight or God forbid at 3:ooam the next day is very normal. I have been there and I know what it is like. I did suffer from depression due to those late nights too but thankfully, I don’t need to work like that anymore.

    • I used to work like that on a daily basis. Nowadays I’m not bothered that much anymore except when there are special situations.

  8. Yes, I always hear people grumbling about the extended hours they have to work. There should be a union to fight for employees’ rights, a strong one. Not crazy about Old Town – Penang, I would drop by any roadside stall or hawker centre. But of course, those would not be as comfortable.

    • Yeah, when you are pissed off and tired, what you really need is somewhere convenient and comfortable. I go to OldTown for these 2 reasons only.

      • LOL…hey high five! yea I was pissed off on last 2 days due to job related issue, and I was so NOT into working mood…went to Papparich to vent my anger and order food like no tomorrow!

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