Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Kuching Amazing Hunt 2008

This event occured on 23 November 2008.

For the first time in like ages, I actually woke up around five in the morning ON A SUNDAY! As much as I was whining on why did I join this MAH (Malaysia Association of Hotels) Kuching Amazing Hunt, ultimately I wanted that prize money and the mystery destination the experience almost similar to The Amazing Race Asia.

Anyway, I met up with my teammates by 8 a.m. before we proceeded to Padang Merdeka, where it was the starting point of the race.



There were 46 teams altogether in this event...so if my team are not the winners, I'll be really hoping an all-girl team won it instead. There was a few all-girl teams, with one team called "Love, Hope & Faith" standing out from the rest by their interesting team attire. Cutting out the front part of the uniform so show their chest training tank-top sure has gotten my attention to them :)



Alright, on to more details on the race itself. Our first clue was located across the field, and just like the starting episode of The Amazing Race, we are to run/walk to get our clue and our starting cash of RM25.



So at 8.30 a.m., it was Ready, Set, GO!



Since childhood I was never good at sprinting and running (since I sucked at breathing). So just after 30 seconds of running I felt like dying already. Gee, Red Bull didn't seem to help!

Anyway, we got the 1st clue; the clue was to figure out how many goldsmith traders are there at the Main Bazaar and name three of the goldsmith traders and then provide the answer to an official waiting at McDonalds at the city centre point. The clues of course were written in an attempt to be a riddle, but most of it were obvious.



It sounded easy wasn't it? I had my digicam ready at the time so we were snapping at the shops just in case we missed out anything. HOWEVER, because we were too confident we ended up having the WRONG number of shops around the bazaar! So after trying to cheat our way by looking at the other team's answers, persuading a team to give us the answer and reviewing the photos taken again and again...we got our 2nd clue. At the cost of us being 2nd place from LAST.

(from here on until Clue #14 there was no pictures taken due to the intensity of the race haha).

Clue #2 was simply to head to the White Cat Statue at Jalan Pandungan for the next clue.

Clue #3 was to head to Everise supermarket nearby to buy certain items. It would be damn easy for anyone who can read chinese text for the items, but because I can't fucking read Chinese and my teammates ain't Chinese we had no bloody idea what the clue really wanted. Thankfully my instincts told me to just get one of the Chinese Everise supervisors to read and helped us to get the items. For your info, the items were a litre of orange juice and a set of laundry detergent, in which MAH would donate it all to charity.

Clue #4 was to head to the front of the Chinese Muzeum and having to finish a "speedy" breakfast of 6 small boxes of Nestle Koko Krunch plus a litre of chocolate milk. I cheated a little by spilling out bits of the chocolate cereal.

Clue #5 was to head to Sarakraf to do either a task or a fast-forward. The additional hint was in Iban, which thankfully I had both team mates who could read it. Despite that, we got lost for a while as we got confused with the clue. Initially we thought the next clue would be at Sarawak Textile Muzeum. While that was not the place for the next clue, some foolish stranger told us that it was just around the muzeum. I tell you, we were searching for almost 20 minutes before an official found us and told us to go the one right outside the city instead and hence we needed a taxi to get there. =___=.

Anyway, when we arrived at Sarakraf we were offered to do the fast-forward task...which was to eat one sago worm that was still ALIVE!! Having expected to eat a live one prior to the race, I offered to eat it...and it actually tasted BETTER than when it was stir-fried! I was certain the officials were shocked to see me looking so forward to eating one alive. Heh, I even asked if I could order live sago worms in the future :P

Remember me???

On to Clue #5 which was to head to The Spring. Clue #6 was to check the names of shops at the shopping mall from a given commercial lot number and vice versa. Clue #7 was to count how many types of donuts the Big Apple Donuts & Coffee had for sale. Clue #8 was simply to head to the DiGi Kiosk and sms for the clue on a couple of DiGi numbers.

Honestly, Clue #8 was stupid. I undertand that DiGi were the sponsors of this event but the reply for the next clue took so long the officials had to tell us where to go next!!! Heck, it was long enough for me to go to the toilet for a desperate big business (read: koko krunch + chocolate milk + sago worm = don't mix)

More interestingly was Clue #9, which was to head to Monica's Hair Saloon at Kenyalang Park and have a member of the team be a victim of a horrible makeup. I regretted not taking a photo of my team mate who's face could have made The Joker proud of her.

On to Clue #10, which was to head to James Brooke momunent. From there, the next clue for Clue #11 was to name nine national parks in Sarawak and find a dude who's an official in disguise (identified only by him wearing a tag). Clue #12 was to find Ms India at Electra House and find her some Indian spices. Not surprisingly the clue for the spices was written in Tamil, but we were lucky to find someone to help us!

Whew! Finally the last clue. Clue #13 was to go to Sarawak Culture Village, the finishing line. Took us more than 10 minutes to be convinced that we needed to go so far -___-.

And I had to take my car somemore. What the hell...67km of petrol gone just like that!!!



After four hours of pushing my physical and mental limits, I was damn happy to be able to finish the race. I was so tired I didn't even had the appertite to eat lunch that was provided.

Despite the massive hiccups that my team had during this race, we managed to finish at a respectable 35th place out of 46. The winner was the team from Holiday Inn hotel...not an all-girl team.

Check out my "shoes". And no, that ain't my plate.

I must thank the hotels (or rather the cheap cost to sponsor) for offering various 2 days 1 night stay for two to almost all the teams. We were lucky to win this set of lucky prize:



Initially I wanted to take up either Hilton or Merdeka Palace for all their real 5-star ratings...but the expiry date was like end of this year. Not like I have a girl to make love with from that short period of time. So I decided to take the Santubong Resort since it expires only August next year and I could use that for the next Rainforest Music Festival :)



Sadly, this race also costs me dear. Financially, the damage was more than RM25; I had to fork out another RM20 for the extra taxi charges (fuck, from India Street to Padang Merdeka is RM10!?). The bigger sad news was that my running shoes "died" 10 minutes to the START of the race!


R.I.P my shoes.

Basically I was running bare-footed for more than half an hour before I had to buy a pair of slippers at the Everise pitstop. And that one costs me RM30. What the hell...RM50 plus 67km of fuel gone.....

To sum it up, I finally got a tiny taste of what would Amazing Race Asia be like. And from this experience I am now more keen to audition for the next Amazing Race Asia...if they still do have another one. And I while I did not enjoy forking out cash I never anticipated to spend on, I thank my teammates and their company for inviting me to represent them.

Bring on the next Kuching Amazing Hunt!




Oh...remember the one hot babe I mentioned from my previous entry? She's married and has 2 kids!!! :(

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Getting ready for The Kuching Amazing Hunt 2008



Two Red Bull cans and a bottle of 100 Plus...CHECK!

Running shoes...CHECK!

Map of Kuching...CHECK!

Watched the repeat of the Amazing Race Asia 3 for motivation...CHECK!

Researched on Kuching culture and estimated tasks...CHECK!

Hot babe spotted during the briefing on the event earlier today...CHECK!

BALLS OF STEEL...CHECK!

Alright, I'll be participating in this Kuching Amazing Hunt tomorrow starting 8.30 a.m. and will be representing Sarawak Convention Bureau together with two other teammates from the company.

So looking forward to kick ass (hopefully) the other 47 teams participating and win RM1,500 plus a mystery destination!

Here's more info on the Kuching Amazing Hunt 2008:


OBJECTIVE

It’s actually a MAH Sarawak Chapter annual event created as an alternative to the annual Sarawak Inter-Hotel Cultural & Ethnic Dance Competition which was held last year. So the idea of this Amazing Hunt was mooted and planned for the hotel industry staffs to get together as well as to promote and create awareness of the various tourist attractions and places of interest in and around Kuching and of course to do it with fun. Unlike the Cultural & Ethnic Dance Competition which is only restricted to member hotels, this Amazing Hunt will be open to our fellow tourism industry players and also the general public.

We also plan to work with the main tourism bodies such as the Sarawak Tourism Board (STB) and Sarawak Convention Bureau (SCB) to organize and promote this Amazing Hunt on a larger scale and maybe incorporate it as one of Kuching’s annual international tourism event if this proves successful.

FACTS & INFORMATION
Day/Date : Sunday, 23rd November 2008
Flag-Off Venue : Padang Merdeka
Flag-Off Time : 8.00am sharp
No of Teams Targeted : 120 teams
Participating Fee : RM300 per team of 3 members
Term of Payment : Cash Only
Dateline for Submission : On or before 5.00pm, 17th November 2008.
Late Submission will not be entertained and all fees paid are non-refundable.


PRIZES
ChampionRM1500 Cash, Return Air Tickets for 3 persons to a Mystery Destination with Complimentary Accommodation
1st Runner-UpRM900 Cash, Hotel Accommodation and Meal Voucher
2nd Runner-UpRM600 Cash, Hotel Accommodation and Meal Voucher
The 3 winning teams will also be invited to MAH Sarawak Chapter 7th Anniversary Dinner themed “A White Christmas Celebration featuring Michael Buble and Norah Jones Tribute” to be held on the 24th November 2008 at Crowne Plaza Riverside Hotel, Kuching. Prizes for the 3 winning teams will be given out during the dinner.


BRIEF MECHANISM
1. A briefing for all registered participants will be conducted on Saturday, 22nd November 2008 at 3.00pm. Venue will be advised later nearer to the date.
2. The Amazing Hunt will utilize various tourist spots/places of interest in and around Kuching.
3. Participants are required to search for clues and perform certain specific tasks as instructed in order to move from one pit stop to another.
4. Participants are only allowed to walk and use public transport for commuting.
5. Participants must wear the official T-shirts and the Identification Tag throughout the event.
6. Refreshment will be provided for all participants at the final point and lucky draws will be conducted as well with attractive prizes to be won

So do come tomorrow and support us!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Happy Birthday (to my head)

For my birthday I decided to shave my head.


Before VS After

After not doing anything for the daytime, my family took me out for dinner. Then I went to Terminal 1 to drink with the usual buddies, with Frankie being the host (of sorts). While we all drank tequila, I enjoyed the tequila shots with Ivan, Alvin and Daniel.


I hug José Cuervo.

As I was partly responsible for Moses' cake-facial on his birthday, I knew I was going to get smacked with a cake sooner or later.


The birthday cake, and I didn't know about it until it was too late.

While I was busy drinking away, Moses sneaked up on me.



And there goes my head. And the chance to flirt with a bunch of girls at the next table.



For the public humiliation of course, I got myself a present :)



It's a goalkeeper gloves!



Mind you, I'm not a natural goalkeeper in our regular futsal session but just because nobody wanted to play goalkeeper I took a little more interest in goalkeeping only last week...

Nonetheless I am thankful for the present :). One step further to conquer my fear of powerful football shots...I think.


Call me Fabien Barthez.

I still haven't had enough of tequila though. Hmm...reckon I should make it up for New Year's Eve?

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Mmm...durian at Pasir Pandak!

After having a pose with Leona Chin and Puteri,I proceed to meet up with my colleagues. We then went to a durian orchard at Pasir Pandak.



Oh we had such a feast! We had the usual sweet and soft type...then the slightly thick and sourish type...but there was one type of durian that was considered rare to find in the city.

It was the "ang bark"durian. Literally it means the "red meat" durian. I don't know what mix breed this durian came from, but it's GOOD and that's what matters!



Basically, it falls more on the sourish type of durian with the flavour of a jackfruit. Correct me for those who thought otherwise.


One way to make my boss happy!

And the damage? While the regular durians cost about RM10 a fruit, this "ang bark" durian was at RM20 a fruit! Expensive...but worth the taste!

In the end I think my colleagues and I ate about 7 to 9 fruits? Heh, talk about our ascending high-blood pressure. Though that doesn't stop me from being a fat bastard :)

I would love to come back for more since durians are in season now!


Can you spot the durian?

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Red Bull Female Drivers Search

I was at Boulevard 10 days ago to see the Red Bull Rookies...OK, more precisely to see the famous female drifter Leona Chin :)


Leona & Puteri...two of the hottest Malaysian drivers!

After their brief introduction together with their trainer Kelvin (although the mic was extremely soft), the Red Bull Female Drivers Search was officially launched.



Leona, Puteri and Kelvin would then to proceed to answer the media's questions...not like there was much to ask from them.



From there, the girls went outside for their photo shoot session.



Leona looking very cute in this photo...



More of the drivers....



and somemore...



and even more! :)



As this was an automobile event, I was expecting Leona and Puteri to be drifting on a sports car like the Nissan Skyline or Subaru Impreza or just driving a Honda Integra or any of the sexy cars out there.

Instead, I had to see them drive...a Proton Saga.


Puteri's feet: cuter than the car

Oh my Lord, this is madness!




OK, so Leona and Puteri couldn't really demonstrate their skills anyway as the shopping mall was way too small to show the good stuff of racing. What the girls did was just the basics of the advance driving technique, in which the registered female drivers in Kuching would have to do well and hence be shortlisted to the next round of the Search.

Still, I was dissappointed with the choice of the test car. Not saying that Proton sucks or anyway like that, but come on la can't the organiser get someone's Proton Satria GTi at least??

Anyway, no matter. I wasn't there for the cars.




Man, why didn't I smile! Or was I too shy? *ahem*

Many thanks to Allen for making it to the event though. Had it not been for his awesome photography I would still have Leah Dizon as my wallpaper. Heh.



Thankfully, I met Leona before I went on a Durian-eating spree...which will be the next update!