Another Trip to India

On the plane back from about 12 days in India. I went to Delhi and Gurgaon again to meet my team and work with them for a week and a half. This marks my fifth time to India and in total I think I have logged almost half a year combined stay in India.

As far as work trips go, India is a bit more fun but I did not get a chance to sight see nor did I really feel the need for it. A weekend was just too short to go anywhere far and cool and I had already explored dehli numerous times. This trip however I did learn finally the game of Cricket and got into watching two games of the 2011 World Cup. This was actually a historic moment for India who national sport if Cricket, Cricket and more Cricket. I partied with a few coworkers/friends and watched the highly emotional India-Pakistan semi final match which India won. On Saturday I watched the entire game of India vs Sri Lanka. India won. The whole country went crazy and it was amazing to see such an event in India. I think the last time they won was in 1983. I went down to the hotel lobby just in time as India won the world cup. People in the hotel weren’t just cheering. They were dancing. Guests and hotel workers alike hugged and danced together. Then this guy started to throw cake around and smeared half the people in the lobby with cake. Since I was there I got it too and also gave back some to a buch of others as well. Pretty soon the whole hotel lobby was slippery with pieces of cake. Needless to say, it was an experience.

Meeting the team in India was excellent and I was able to finally learn all 40+ peoples names. We worked some long hours as I had a lot of meetings during the day with our leads there and had to run some meetings in the e evenings with our clients. It was really great to meet them face to face and we discussed and i hope took a lot of actions against many issues. Here’s a pic of the Michelin team.


I also got a chance to meet some of their families over lunch on Sunday. Anuj, Kumar and Bahri have really cute kids and they we the center of our attention all through lunch. We ate at BBQ nation, a North Indian Grill. The food was excellent, except i thought the appetizer was the main course because there was so much food!


This time, I was able to meet up with Abi. He showed me his office and even one of his contraction sites. Abi was nice enough to take me around Delhi as we went jewelry hunting to buy some nice but affordable India style earrings and pendants. We eventually found a nice store in Karol Baugh a old market area in Delhi.


I had a great time in India, didn’t get any food poison, brushed up on my Hindi, met up with old friends and met new ones and learned how to watch cricket. I still really missed Ash, Emery and Nai Nai however and I am really looking forward to be home.

FiberScrumptious Taste Testing Phase 2 March 2010

In December 2009, I officially incorporated my company, FiberScrumptious, Inc.  The goal of this company will be to sell high-fiber healthy muffins based on distribution to different health food stores, and hopefully, even to Costco one day.  My product is mainly about promoting the health benefits of consuming fiber on a regular basis and incorporating them into your lifestyle, while attempting to take away some of the negative perceptions of the taste of a high-fiber product.

On the evening of March 4, I conducted phase 2 of my high-fiber muffin taste testing at our apartment; I did phase 1 taste testing back in December 2009.  For phase 2, about 8-10 girls showed up.  One of my three target audience is women between 20-30 years old who are interested in healthy-eating and high-fiber products. The taste testing session was very successful and I received great feedback through speaking to the testers and a survey.  I had 12 flavors in total and one of the goals of the testing was to help determine the best 6 flavors to use going forward.  I received great comments and helpful suggestions on how to improve the muffins since this was going to be the last taste testing before pushing the product into our next stage, which is to submit a sample to get an accurate nutritional analysis.

The testing was also very fun because it was the first time I had a chance to meet some of the taste testers.  Everyone was great and friendly.  I am so thankful to have them provide valuable feedback!

Move to NYC March 2009

LIttle did I know that we would end up living in Times Square for the next year. This apartment was the most convenient one I could find closest to Ray’s work. With the long hours he had to endure, at least his commute to work would end up to be a 10-minute walk from home. Plus, it was one of the few that allowed 2 dogs.

One of our main concerns of living in Times Square was whether our dogs Pok’e and Cappy would adjust well. There were very little areas of green and they had to deal with doing their business on the street sidewalks. But thank goodness, our dogs cooperated and adapted quickly to their new temporary home and surroundings.  In fact, they somewhat embraced it and enjoyed all the different scents they got to smell on the busy streets of Times Square.

They even found their new favorite hangout spot in the apartment…

Been a long time…

It’s been awhile since I last posted.  Things got pretty busy after Ashley’s birthday.  Here’s some updates:


Most importantly, I made the best purchase of 2008, the iPhone 3G!!!!  This thing rocks.  It’s like a mini computer.  I use for work email, music, calendar, GPS, facebook and games.  Like the ad says, this has changed everything.  I am also happy to announce that my old Motorola flip phone that was worse than the first cell phone I ever got is sitting quietly in some dark drawer gathering dust…


Ok with that major event out of the way…

Ashley’s Hawaii and Cali Trip

In August Ash went to Hawaii and California to visit family.  It was her PoPo’s 90th birthday on August 27th!!  She still looks quite good for her age and still enjoys fried food, especially fried shrimp and roast duck on a regular basis.  Now that is a women with a good digestive system!


Ash also took lots of great photos of plants and flowers in Hawaii to use as materials for her painting. This one is my favorite and she should definitely paint this one.


California is also where Ziggy lives (LA).  Ash spent lots of time with Megan and Dylan going to Disney Land and Sea World. I grew up on sesame street but these Cali kids grew up on Disney!


Ray in India

Around the same time in August, I went to India again to kick off another project with the Spark City team there.  It started out great and I was having a great time working with everyone until I got sort of viral fever that was quite common in August after the monsoon.  Unfortunately the fever knocked me out for the last week of the 2 weeks I was there.  I still had a great time and we achieved all that I had hoped but I really wish I had the energy to spend more time with the team that last week.

Apple Picking

September was for the most part a heads down week for work though the weekends were pretty busy as well.  Ash and I went with the Lo’s to enjoy some Georgia apple picking which also included farm favorite attractions like cow milking, pig races and the plenty of fried food southern style.  Below is a photo of Ash and I poking our faces through these cheesey cut-outs.  We love these things and take a photo like this everywhere we find one.  How do I look with the curls?


Ian’s visit to the US

Ian also came and visited in September.  It was his first time in the US and Ash and I drove down to Savanah where he was attending a conference.  It has been alittle over 10 Years since we last saw each other in Beijing and Harbin.  He was just 15 then and now he’s married!  We had a great time catching up and I was sorry to see him go.  In my generation in China, most people don’t have siblings so cousins are like brothers and sisters.  I wish him and his wife the best!


Hollywod’s Bachelor Party

It was also Hollhywood’s bachlor party in September as well and I had a great time acting like the college days with the bros.  We went skeet shooting, had lots of good food, and plenty of drinks.  Here’s a cool photo of me shooting down a wild boar!  Just kidding, it was a clay disc…


Spark City India Team

I had a great time work with the Spark City team.  Everyone is very enthusiastic about the project and working with the technology.  We have a good mix of both young and veteran team members and it’s really nice to see everyone pitching in to do their share.  It has been a great learning experience for me as well.  I was able to accomplish so many things during just two weeks, that the same would have taken me twice to three times as long if I were in the US.

We spent a lot of time going through the logic of each development function.  We printed out the screen design, wireframes  to plan out work activities and wrote test cases.  We also spent some significant amount of time on overall project context, giving the team an idea of the business reason, the coca-cola culture and our clients.  We also had a discussions about quality and how we all can improve the user experience.

Here’s a picture of the full team.


Every morning, we have a LLP (low level plan) meeting where each person goes through what they did yesterday and their plan for the day.  It’s also the opportunity to identify or escalate any issues or risks.  In typical Sapient style, the LLP is on a huge whiteboard.  Every team has one and at the end of each LLP meeting there is a team cheer.  So in the morning with five or six other teams in the same floor, you hear everyone’s team cheer.  Our’s is Spark City Halla Bol.  (I forget what it means, and I think I also spelled it wrong -will correct later)


Here’s Arif, our Site Dev Lead facilitating a LLP meeting.



The team giving their status update (front the left: Vaibhav, Archit, Pankaj, Jomy).


Here’s Avesh and Rajni discussing their story (functional development scope).


Printing out and posting the site comps with the wireframes on the wall helps the team discuss and communicate.


Hardik showing us his Connect & Collaborate page in development.