Thursday, February 28, 2008

Vietnam Trip 2008

I had a fantastic experience in Vietnam. The weather is cold, the food is weird and the language is beyond our comprehension. However all of these never stopped me from enjoying the trip because I had great travelling friends.

Well, since all my travelling friends are bloggers, so no point if we all blog about the same thing. Hence I will blog about Vietnam’s socio-economy which I guess nobody will cover.

In Vietnam, the distribution of wealth is very unequal. The rich is extremely rich whereas the poor is awfully poor. This phenomenon is clearly shown on the road, whereby you can see Vietnamese either drive a Mercedes or ride a motorbike, even worse bicycle. There isn’t any cheap car I could find on the road, I think the cheapest car is the taxi, which is Toyota Vios. At least in Malaysia we can see the variety of car ranges from economical to luxurious. Of course the population of poor people is more than rich people, so the traffic is always full of motorbike and bicycle, in tourist centre there are lots of trishaw too. Speaking of globalization, I didn’t really see its effect on Vietnam because most of the shops are local brands, there isn’t any Mcdonal’s , KFC, Carrefour I could find in the city area. Anyway, I can’t exactly say there is no globalization going on in Vietnam because I don’t know the country’s trading in the international level.

In Hanoi city, it is divided into two parts, which are old quarter and French quarter. Old quarter, like its name suggests, it is the older part of the city, where there are lots of shop lots and markets. On the other hand, French quarter has high class hotels and magnificent European style buildings like the Opera House which we can’t enter. Well, my point is the city development is uneven and I guess this will polarize the economy status of Hanoi, which will only benefit the rich people. In the old quarter, we often can see people sit at the road side and enjoy their tea, and café only visited by foreign tourists. Well, I don’t know if this is related to their culture or their buying power.

I guess that’s enough for my review, and now the pictures below will show you how much I love this trip.

LCCT, before boarding

Outside St. Joseph Church

Inside the church

Vietnamese Muzium of Revolution

Thing you must do after taking a photo (in order to save memory space..)

Everything has 2 sides (important landmark in Hanoi)

Waterfall at Sa Pa

Our unique way of camwhoring

Food that i ate in Vietnam

Happy 21st Birthday, Aaron (celebrated at Pho 24)

Creepy Faces (on the junk)

After kayaking at Halong Bay

At the same time, check out my calendar series:

Sunday, February 24, 2008

I am back

Awesome trip with awesome friends

Hey people, finally I am back from Vietnam. It’s been a very exhausting trip, but I really enjoy it!

This is my first overseas trip with my friends, and I did have a great time with all of them. We laughed, we sang, we ‘fought’, we ate, we imitated, we camwhored… there were plenty of memorable experience that I am sure it would last forever in my mind.

Now back to Malaysia, or like what James said, ‘back to reality’, gave me a very complicated feeling. I am glad that I can come back to home safely, but I also wish the trip would not end. Well, that’s vacation and we can’t just stay in fantasy all the time, can we?

I am going to blog about Vietnam trip once I got all the pictures, for the mean time, you can check out Kevin’s blog first (because he is compiling all the pictures for us). By the way, Kajen got Angelina Jolie’s lips and Aaron’s face is not as fair as it was before, so quickly go and see them before everything subsides, haha!

Anyway, thank you guys for the fantastic vacation!

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Pre Vietnam Trip

Less than 24 hours later, 5 of us (me, james, aaron, kevin and kajen) will be leaving Malaysia and fly with AirAsia to Vietnam, really anticipating it…

This trip starts at 18th of Feb and we will be coming back at 23rd of Feb. Places that we are going are Hanoi, Sa-pah and Halong Bay. Because it is going to be back-packer style and budgeted, we have to plan and make arrangement properly. Well, I didn’t really plan it but I did voice up my opinion, sometimes. Haha!

Thanks to Aaron, our main planner for this trip.
Thanks to James, our timeline planner and general information of Vietnam.
Thanks to Kajen, our budget and transportation planner.
Thanks to Kevin, our treasurer in Vietnam.
My job in Vietnam will be a potter, carrying water and stuff for my friends (sounds like kuli, aih…)
Oops, need to pack my stuff now. See ya!

Our first meeting, 20/1/2008

Looking for bag pack

Cyling lesson for Kajen and Kevin

Gathering with Pek Yiong

Pek Yiong invited me, James and Debbi for a dinner buffet in Le Meridien Hotel last Friday. I don’t know why she chose the place but it was a very good choice though my wallet had to bleed.

It’s been almost 2 years I never see Pek Yiong. I know her when I was studying SAM, she stayed with James and that’s how I got to know her. She is very funny and cheerful. Currently studying Nutrition in Newcastle University and will be graduating next year. So before she flies back to Australia this Sunday, she called us and gathered for a dinner.

We had fantastic time there. We ate a lot, we talked till the restaurant wanted to close, and we camwhored anywhere that’s possible.

For food review, please refer James’s second blog. From my point of view, it is nice.

A night out with Pek Yiong at Le Meridien

My birthday present (cute black octopus) from Debbi and Pek Yiong

Take care, Pek Yiong

Posting at Klinik Kucai

One word, awesome!

Swarna and I had 5 days posting at Klinik Kucai in Kuchai Lama last week. The experience was memorable and though we didn’t learn a lot, we enjoyed ourselves very much. Well, the only bad thing was we had to wake up very early in the morning, around 7am and that was torturing, haha!

Klinik Kucai is owned by Dr. Bala and his wife, Dr. Jeya. Both of them were graduated from India and have been working in this clinic since 1991. They are very nice people and that’s why their clinic is always full of patient.

One thing I learn from Dr. Bala is his favourite advice to all his patients, especially for coughing patients. “Tolong saya jangan cakap banyak, minum banyak air, itu buah-buahan yang ada season punya, macam durian, mata kucing, dan sekarang ada itu ‘Gam’(mandarin orange), semua out. Yang itu Hacks, Fisherman boleh makan, 100 plus juga boleh minum, goreng-goreng dan oily food tak mau makan, susu juga out….” So all coughing or sore throat people please remember this!

Another unforgettable experience is drawing blood, and my first victim was Swarna. When we saw Dr. Jeya took patient’s blood, it seemed like an easy job. But when I hold the syringe on my hand, the feeling was completely different. Besides, Swarna’s veins were so hard to detect and making me so worried that my lousy skill would hurt her hand. But luckily both doctors were standing at our side and gave us guidance and I successfully drew out blood that less than 1cc. Same thing happened to Swarna, and of course I was her first victim as well. On the next day, we were so excited and wanted to take another one, without doctor’s guidance. We met failures, but in the end, we did it!

Still remember the baby’s case that happened last year, in which the hand had to be amputated after injection? Aih, better brush up my skills with needles…

Anyway, it was really an awesome posting!

My first needle victim, Swarna, haha!

Please have mercy on me...

Things we do just to learn, let's just say we sacrifice for the greater good

Thank you Dr. Bala and Dr. Jeya for the memorable experience

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Gong Xi Fa Chai

Today is the second day of Chinese New Year, but the celebration mood has over. All the relatives have gone back, and I just said goodbye to my family who are on their way back to Ipoh. Can’t believe that’s CNY 2008!

Well, I wouldn’t say this is the most memorable CNY that I ever have, but life has taught me to appreciate, even in the worst scenario that against your will. Appreciate things happen for a reason and appreciate people that love you.

Chinese has no Thanksgiving Day, but in this CNY, I think it is the best time to show our appreciation. Thus I hereby, would like to say thank you:

1) My family, who is the sanctuary of my heart all the time

2) 三姑&三姑丈, for providing their warmest hospitality in this CNY

3) My relatives, especially my cousins who I love spending time with

4) James and Aaron, for lending their rooms to me

5) All my friends who send their CNY wishes to me

6) Lastly the ancestor, who create this festival so that we have the opportunity to meet each other and get fat, hehe!

By the way, my house minor renovation has finished

First day of CNY, go to pyramid arcade with my cousins


Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Convo Mag Fund Raising Project – IMU Idol

As you all know, our convo mag is in dire need of funds. With most of our solid ideas either being hammered down or have already been done by other, IMU idol seems to be the only real hope to generate funds. The target for this project would be an estimated RM 3000. The Blind Date project previously collected a whooping >RM3000. I’m telling you, ‘If we can get enough of people to organize this, we’ll make equally as much if not more!’

IMU idol will span a total of 4 weeks, with the first week being the audition, followed by semis and finally the finale. Each stage of the competition will be filmed and shown everyday at the atrium where our voting booths will be. The public can vote for their favorites by purchasing a vote (and MIGHT include a freebie like chocolate OR NOT) at the voting booths. Prices to be discussed later.

The audition is to be held at the lecture halls where else the semis and the finals will be at the atrium. We are trying to organize the semis in conjunction with the food fair by the ball committee. As the competition progresses, half the number of participants will be eliminated each time. The winner, first runner up and second runner up will be given a prize respectively.
The basis behind the creation of IMU idol:

1. It is an efficient money making scheme that requires zero funds to start, which is why we’ll need all the man power to make this right!
2. It’s never been done before and the idea appeals to most of us.
3. IMU has plenty of hidden voice talents.
4. To create an atmosphere of competition which hopefully will give us the edge of more votes. Here, votes = money.
5. It’s finally a chance to organize something that’ll suck money out of other batches instead of the usual self generated profits.
6. Since it involves other batches, they’ll no longer hesitate to contribute to OUR convo mag.

IMU Idol committee proposal
For effective handling of the events, I propose a 4 team committee.

The first team’s task is to sort out the promotional aspect of the event. This includes job such as drawing up posters or banners and preparing wallpaper for the computers in the e-labs. Other reasonable suggestions for the promoting team would be to design human billboards and flyers for circulation. If there’s sufficient time, a video to advertise the event would be highly recommended. I personally will be filming all 3 events, from the audition to the semis and the finals. I hope to gather around 4 to 5 people for this team and upon completion of their tasks, they may or may not join the other teams as to their liking. It is important that people work as a team here. Each individual may have a specific style but a blend of all styles may sometimes yield better results. So, please compromise!

The second team will handle the booths. Collecting and counting the votes are a priority to this team as all incoming cash flows from here. It is advisable to draw up a timetable in order to rotate the person in charge each day. As the event will span for about 4 or 5 weeks, it is essential to have responsible people in charge of the booth. The team also needs to come up with a chart to show the number of votes for each contestant. In this case, Size (of the chart) Does Matter! I propose about 4 to 6 people for this team, with 2 people on stand by at the booth each day. The operation hours are up to you guys but try to cover a span of 4 to 5 hours each day and you may split the hours throughout the day for longer coverage.

The third team is the event team. The jobs here are the most tedious involving both the semis and finals competition to prepare for. This team basically has to organize and beautify both the events in order to draw in more crowds for the votes. For the singing competition rounds, the team is encouraged to invite our very own IMU bands to perform along with the singers. It doesn’t need to be very high standard (like the Friday night), but must be equally nice as well. Positions to be filled include team leader (1), emcees (2), stage crew (2), spotlight (1), and decoration (2).

The last team would be the organizing team. This is a fundamental team as all activities have to pass through this team. Individuals with interesting ideas may join and contribute to the IMU idol idea. Right now, this team comprises of me (Kevin), Han Ying and Naomi.

The whole IMU idol is still in its preliminary planning. So, I apologize for the inadequate information in this notice. Feel free to contact any of the numbers below for further information or if you’re interested in joining us. Participants will be awarded a certificate at the end of the event. Thank you for your attention. It is greatly appreciated.

Kevin Yong – 017 2753300 (
Lim Han Ying – 0123891633 (
Naomi Ting – 0169752797 (

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Chinese New Year 2008

Chinese New Year, the most celebrated festival among the Chinese. When i was young, i loved getting 'ang pao' from the grown-ups and running around the house with my cousins. But now, i am not young anymore, and my age seems stuck between grown-up and kid. So what can i do during CNY? I really duno, please tell me if you have any idea.

Well, i do appreciate CNY more compared to last time, because it's the time i can meet my whole family and spend quality time together. Reunion dinner is always fantastic, it's not because of the dishes on the table, but it's a moment for all of us to sit down in a round table and care for each other. I always believe that a good relationship among family members start from the dining table. Other than communication, i don't think there is another way to get close with family, right?

Before i end this post, here i am officially launch the Chinese New Year Song Music Video that we film last year in Kuching. Enjoy!

Happy Chinese New Year!