28 July 2011

Umm,... it's nice

How often do you get this response from a friend, or colleague?

And how often do you get this from your close friend of even your boyfiend or girlfriend, or your partner, or your husband or your family?

I find it kinda disturbing when people don't really have opinion, especially if they are quite close to you.

Especially when it comes to choosing place to go, or place to eat.

A: Where are we going for dinner?
B: Up to you
A: What do you want to eat?
B: Um,.. I don't know. Up to you.
A: Chinese?
B: Umm,.. we went there last week!
A: Italian?
B: Hm, it's crowded on thursday evening
A: Indonesian
B: Oh, come on, we can cook Indonesian ourselves!
A: .... *not talking anymore*

Why don't you just say what you want! and even if it means not going anywhere for dinner, it'd be better than saying 'up to you!'

I guess living in a country, where the people are very direct, has taught me to express what I think or what I feel. And I kinda expect people to do the same.

Don't you think the world would be a better place if there is no such thing like back-stabbing, talking behind your back, gossipping,... And I guess all it starts with honesty and expressing your true opinion.

What do you think?

25 July 2011

Senz Umbrella: finally, a product that makes sense!

If you live in the Netherlands, are frustrated with the weather, and think that umbrella is just hopeless, you are just like me! Until I found Senz Umbrella, the famous, strange umbrella that works well against strong wind.

Well, I was very proud and positive about this umbrella, until it was broken 2 weeks ago. I wouldn’t blame the product, though, because the wind was too strong, coming from many different sides.

When my umbrella was R.I.P, all I could do was sobbing inside. It wasn’t an easy decision to buy this umbrella. Due to the abnormal price for one piece of mini umbrella, I had to think a lot before buying it; but finally I bought it!

I was overly positive about it. I promoted to my colleagues who had frustration about their broken umbrella. But not after 2 weeks ago! I was sad and regretted my decision buying this too expansive umbrella, yet still broken in the end.

As a social media geek, I thought, hmm,.. let’s try to find Senz Twitter or Facebook account. Just for fun, I googled Senz’ Twitter and Facebook account, and I found them! I tweeted about my problem, and they replied (quite quickly!). And see the picture below:

YES!! I am going to get a replacement, a new Senz umbrella!!

All I had to do was to send the pictures of my broken Senz (luckily I didn’t throw it away. I guess it was because I was still hoping that I could fix it somehow) to the customer service e-mail address.

Within 2 days, I got a reply saying that I should be able to show my receipt, as it is the warranty certificate of Senz. WOOoot?!

I was quite upset, because first I didn’t know that receipt serves as warrant certificate. No one told me when I bought it at de Bijenkorf (or did it say on the product information attached with the product? If you have Senz please check to confirm). And I bought it almost 2 years ago!

Well, I didn’t hope too much. I thought, most Dutch companies don’t really do replacement and nice things for the customer after all. So I wrote back: “thank you. I didn’t keep the receipt though; but I hope that I could still receive a new senz umbrella, as it was tweeted to me. It would be very nice.”

I was sad.

Last weekend, I was umbrella-less, and it was pouring very hard.

This morning, the sky showed some indication that it’d be raining. And again, I was umbrella-less. I thought: I might just buy a cheap Hema umbrella later in the evening.

Yet, not long after that thought, I got an e-mail from Senz.
And this is Senz' replied I received this morning. Some details have been hidden due to privacy reason :)

So now it is the real YES! I just used the coupon to buy myself a new mini, blessing of the rain, Senz umbrella.

Thank you Senz! You have definitely exceeded my expectation.

And for you who own (or who want to buy one) Senz umbrella, here are some tips to keep it safe and to be prepared if it is broken:

  • When you know the wind is too strong (especially when the weather forecast says the wind is level 7), just don’t use the umbrella. This is how I got my Senz broken.

  • Open it carefully. A friend of mine got his switch button broken because he pushed it too hard when trying to open the umbrella (too bad he threw his umbrella away already)

  • Keep the receipt! I was lucky that I still got the replacement, but for next time, just keep the receipt, as it serves as warranty certificate.

  • Be patient and be positive about social media. Some friends were laughing at my effort, but yay, I prove them wrong!

  • And marketing tips, as I am a marketing person myself, try to do just like Senz. In the era of social media, people are constantly talking about your brand. What you’ve got to do is to talk back and exceed their expectations.

So, well done Senz!

For more info about the product go to Senz Umbrella website

Welcome back to Holland, Welcome back LDR!

It's been more than 2 weeks ago when I landed to this wet and cold supposed-to-be summer of Holland, after my 1 month summer holiday in Indonesia.

And it has also been more than 2 weeks that I have res-entered to the LDR - long distance relationship. I couldn't believe myself for doing it all over again. After being in LDR for almost 5 years, I remembered making an oath not to be in this cruel LDR cycle again!

But here I am, or let's say here we are, again.

If you ask how I am so far, I'd say on the weekdays, it's okay. But on the weekend, this is when the emptiness started to creep in.

Missing him is not the worst, thanks to the technology (do I hear a Hallelujah?), but his presence is really missed. Since we lived in the same city, he often was at home cooking dinner for me. Or we often went for movie or dining when we felt like it (or when the weather allowed).

And weekends were always our favorite! We went to traditional market, experimented with some recipes, went window shopping, made little trip, or visited some friends. It's always been a busy weekend, which we also ALWAYS regretted on the Monday.

But now, it is simply me, my books, and tons of TV series. I do still like to try out some recipes, but it's just simply to fill my hungry tummy. With Stefy around, I tried out recipes to pamper him.

To conclude, it's so far so good, then. It's been worse. I think we kinda used to LDR; thus this time it ain't that hard, especially the communication part (Again, Hallelujah to technology!).

Wish me luck, ok? :)

By the way, I found this book. Interesting. Anyone have read this book?