Wednesday, August 30, 2006

"Go confidently in the direction of your dreams,
Live the life you've imagined."
Pretty much describes the the point in my life which I'm at. Thanks.

Japanese Potty Training

Japanese Potty Training

Wow... the japanese have videos for everything... saw a snippet of this at the Emmy Awards and found the whole thing on Youtube.

Take a look. Beware of extreme toilet action.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

WoW Stuff

Oh yah, never posted this the last time. I bought these World of Warcraft stuff from China on my two recruitment trips.

First pic are a pair of rings. One says 'WARCRAFT' and the other "WORLD OF WARCRAFT'. If I remember correctly, they cost about S$10 each. Really cool. I think these are the official WoW merchandise in China. The second pic are four rubber key chains. They only cost less than S$1! Obviously not official stuff. heh.

Yes, I admit. I'm seriously addicted to WoW. Sigh.

Long Hu Men (Dragon Tiger Gate)

Hmm, I'm jobless today. Unemployed. In other words, no income. :P For the next few months, gonna have to live off my savings.

Got up at 9am today. Bummed around a little. Read the papers then decided, what the heck, it's Day 1 of my jobless life, so back to bed I went. Woke up again at 12noon. After scanning through the day's news, decided to go catch a movie - Dragon Tiger Gate.

Actually, I've heard really mixed reviews for the movie. I think I've seen reviews giving it 1 star to reviews giving it 4 stars (out of 5). Well, Eng Wah cinemas were having a $5 special so I decided to give it a go (not say any other good movies out there lar).

Dragon Tiger Gate (or Long Hu Men) is based on the popular chinese comic of the same name. I never read those comics. Chinese not good enough. I never could understand which were the names of the people and which were the names of the kungfu strokes. Confusing.

DTG has got pretty good action sequences. The fighting is well choreographed and I especially like the finale fight scene. The whole movie should be like that lor. They had all the special kungfu moves with the accompanying special effects. Very cool.

But unfortunately, that's about all that's good about the movie.

The storyline was VERY boring. If not for the fighting sequences, I'd be bored stiff. Hated all the attempts to work in a romantic storyline. Hated the predictable bad brother-good brother scenes. Hated the bad-guy-turned-good-guy plot.

The actors. Hmm.. You really need to look the part. For most of them, the cast were ok. The biggest problem to me is the main star, Donnie Yuen. He's a great fight choreographer & martial art fighter. But he needs to realize that he just can't carry a movie. He was so uncharismatic and you can't help but wish someone younger, and more wuxia-like had taken on the role. He basically looked like a lao-ah-beng in the movie. Donnie should really just concentrate on doing what he's best at and stop trying to be a movie star.

For 5 bucks, I think DTG is a decent movie. If you've not watched it, go catch it, but only for the kung fu scenes. Forget about the storyline parts. Go buy popcorn and drinks or go to the toilet everytime they start talking. lolz.

Here's the movie poster as well as a cover from one of the Long Hu Men Comics. Just for comparison.

Farewell to 1Q 2005

Like to thank 1Q (2005) for the farewell party they put together for me last Thursday.

It's been my pleasure to have been your FT last year. Thanks for being such a spirited class. I've enjoyed being both your Physics Teacher and Form Teacher. You are such a diverse class but at the same time, I'm really glad that you were pretty united. Sure, there were the occasional hiccups and arguments, but by and large, it was great to see you all get along so well.

Thank you for the video. Really brought back memories. Especially the one with you guys in the fake ponytails. Yeah, really like it's RGS Youth day rather than RI Youth day.. heh.... You guys just wait. If any of you ever get famous or important, I tell you, these photos will come back and haunt you! I will keep the video safely for a long time... might help in my retirement fund next time! lolz.

Thanks for the very meaningful present. Dunno if it was intended or otherwise, but I really like the fact you used the mirror frame from last year. Made it so much more thoughtful. Most self-loving class indeed! haha.

It's hard to thank all of you individually. So I shan't try in case I leave out anyone. Thanks to the whole class for putting the farewell party together.

They served me anti-grav cakes! Wow.. must get the receipe.

Well 1Q (2005), good luck for your next 2 years in RI. Enjoy your last few months together as a class. Don't bully Mr Jee and Mdm Kwek.

I'm sure we'll meet up again in the future. See ya!


It's just past midnight and 28th August 2006 is over.

So, my last day in RI, is officially over.

Free at last!

Sunday, August 27, 2006

One week since my last post. Hmm, looks like I might be losing interest in blogging... haha.. no lar. Just a little difficult to blog coz the last week has been quite busy with things like prefects interviews and packing up my stuff in the staff room.

I spent the whole afternoon clearing up as much of my stuff as possible. Really... 5.5 years of rubbish. I really have a lousy habit of hoarding stuff. My room is also like that. Plenty of stuff which I think I might use some time, some where. Today, it was just throw, throw, throw, throw, throw.

Tomorrow's my last day in RI. Can't believe it was 3 mths ago that I'd made the decision to leave. 3 mths really do pass by very quickly.

1Q (2005) and the prefects threw farewell parties for me. They were very memorable. But I decided that I would blog about them and my thoughts about leaving only after I've left. So, there should be plenty of updates in the following week. Check back if you are interested.

For the last two days, I've been amusing myself with Mr Brown's podcast about PM Lee's National Day message. The song they did making use of PM Lee's voice was hilarious! Wonder if he'll be permanently shut down! lolz. Maybe the gahmen is being tolerant since PM Lee talked so much about embracing IT developments. If you haven't heard it, pop by mr brown's blog and try it out.

Well, before the actual posts come out, if the guys from 1Q 2005 and the RIPB pop by here, I want you to know that your farewell parties have really encouraged me. Please accept my heatfelt appreciation for the effort and planning in putting the parties together!

Monday, August 21, 2006

I went to watch Lake House today. Yeah, I know, total chick flick. But for some reason, I really wanted to watch it. I think it was partially the idea that Sandra Bullock and Keanu Reaves was pairing up again. And I thought the story was kinda interesting (though hopelessly flawed, as are all time-paradox stories).

Well, this post is not so much about the movie (which was kinda ho-hum anyway) but about the service at GV Great World.

The movie was scheduled to start at 2.20pm but then at 2.30pm, an announcement was suddenly made, saying that due to techinical difficulties, the movie would start 10mins late... ok lor.. so I waited. And waited. Then at 2.45pm, they said they were still working out the problems (heh, in not-too-good english) and that the movie would start in about 15mins. Haha... people started to leave the cinema. I decided to just wait it out. Nothing much else to do on a Sunday afternoon.

As I waited, I couldn't help but wonder why didn't the cinema staff do something to like, make us a little happier. I thought, a small packer of popcorn or small drink... really wouldn't cost much to the cinema. Yet there was just waiting and waiting. Finally, at about 3.10pm, the movie restarted.

So ok lor, watch lor.... about 10mins into the movie, the manager (at least I think it was the manager) crept up to each of us in the cinema, apologised and gave us a complimentary ticket for a GV movie. I thought... not bad... was a nice end to the 'saga'... heh. At least they tried.

Hmm, wonder if I can get a job at GV? Might be interesting....


8 days to go. Then things will change.

It's hard to say what I am feeling right now. Must admit, there is a sense of freedom, relaxation. But then again, there's so much to do before the end.

Todae was kinda surreal. Was flipping through the Recuitment Ads in yesterday's paper when I saw my job being advertised. Heh. Was a strange kinda feeling.

Oh well. I've made my choice. Now to look forward.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Photo Album updated with pics of Dinghu Mountain

It's good to be home

Yeah, it's really good to be home. Home sweet home.

As per usual routine, time to go for laksa & chicken rice.

Guangzhou was interesting, but we were only there overnight coz our flight home was on Friday, not Thursday. Although only a short few hours, I managed to find their toys & gifts wholesale centre.. .and it was like discovering heaven! It was basically 6 storeys of shops doing wholesale for toys and gifts... you know, things like soft toys (I bought a totoro soft toy for only $3!) and handphone straps, etc, etc. It's so huge but I had only 2 hours to explore the place. Got myself a small lava lamp for $5 and an electrostatic discharge globe (you know, the scientific looking glass globes with lightning-looking things inside) for only $12! So shiok. I'm seriously thinking of taking a short trip to Guangzhou to properly visit the place!

Well, whatever it may be, it's still good to be home. :-)
Finally, I had to include this pic. Around the park were some billboards of comic works. It's quite funny coz I don't think they realize what the english words really meant! I mean, this is supposed to be a family oriented park and I thought it was funny to find the 'F' word displayed so prominently at the entrance of the park!
There was a cultural park near the start of the trek. Supposed to have some cultural performances there but we missed them coz we went on the trek. Here's the huge urn in the park. Makes a pretty picture with the mountains in the background.
Here's a pic from the end point of our walk, near the top. There are two waterfalls. One obvious one on the right (which is actually part of the 'ren-pu' and the other one is hidden in the left. Can see?
But the trek basically brought us to see the various waterfalls within the area. Quite nice actually. There were about 3 or 4 waterfalls. Tiring, but beautiful. This is a pic of the 'ren-pu' or 'human-waterfall'. It's so named coz it was formed with two waterfalls at a angle, looking like the word 'ren' which is 'human' in chinese.
We were deciding whether to do the 'walk'. The girl at the counter said it was a fairly easy 60min walk, so we decided to give it a go. Boy was she lying... the walk was through a jungle track and there were also parts where we had to go up steep inclines (no doubt with steps cut into the rock). It was kinda unexpected, and what was supposed to be a leisurely visit ended up being quite an exercise... not something I would look forward to.
On our way to Guangzhou (our flight to Singapore departs from there) from Zhaoqing, we took a detour to Dinghu mountain as we were a little too early to check in to our hotel in Guangzhou. Here's the lake ('hu') which is at the top ('ding') of the mountain. Hence the the name 'Dinghu' mountain or 'Mountain with Lake at the top".
This is the hotel we stayed in at Zhaoqing, our last stop for this trip. The one thing which amazes us is how long the hotel corridor was! This is probably the longest hotel corridor which I have ever seen. From the lift to our rooms (which would of course be near the end of the corridor), the distance was about 100m! It's really hard to imagine what was going through the architect's mind when he designed such a hotel.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Yesterday, 5 August, was a long day of testing, interviews and marking. We had a Parent Teachers Meeting today and then some free time after that. I went to Dongmen (东门) and it was really a busy busy busy place. Here's a pic of one small corner of the place. Note the nice big MacDonalds sign in the middle? Looks like corporate America is really reaching into every corner of the world. There's also Walmart in Shenzhen and a couple of other cities that we've been to so far.

Dongmun is a huge place with plenty of shops. Unfortunately, most of them are fashion & home stuff, hardly of an interest to me. There was however this place called Comics City (动漫城) which was a wonderland to me! Basically, 2 floors of shops selling cartoon/anime/comic stuff. Found really cheap Totoro stuff. Of course, it's probably not original, but really, the quality is good and it onli costs like S$6... So, if u are a comic/anime fan and ever happen to be in Shenzhen, don't miss out on this place.

I arrive into Shenzhen on 4 August. We were really very fortunate. Apparently, on 3 August, a typhoon struck Shenzhen and over 300 flights were delayed. Flights trying to enter Shenzhen were also diverted to other cities. We were really worried that the thunderstorm would not let up but other than an overcast sky, the weather was fine and cool.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Deja Vu


Guess what. My wallet got stolen tonight.

I don't know why. Must be something to do with me and recruitment trips. In all my personal travels, I have never ever got anything stolen or lost. And yet, on last year's India recruitment trip, my passport was stolen and now, in this year's China recruitment trip, my wallet (thankfully not my passport) got stolen.

Basically, I was on my way back from the supermarket to the hotel. Walking along a busy stretch of road, no more than 1.5m in front of my colleagues. My wallet was in my waist pouch which I was holding by the handle in my right hand and kinda swinging it a little as I walked. My colleague suddenly pointed out to me that the zipper was open. When I looked in, I noticed my wallet was missing.

Strangely, I wasn't really upset. I mean, what's the point right? Frankly, I thought I had taken reasonably care of my wallet. Didn't even take it out to flash the money or anything. Of course, I could have held it tightly to my chest, so maybe that's something I'll have to learn.

On a sad note, in my wallet were about 400 RMB (approx 90 singapore dollars), 2 credit cards and my IC. Replacing my IC will cost about $100.

On a brighter side, they thieves didn't take my camera and brand new Sony Ericsson K800i. Heh. Joint cost of the two is many more times than the replacement of my IC and the money lost.

Oh well. Whatever will be will be. No point crying over spilt milk. Just have to be EVEN more careful next time.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Finished with Changchun (长春) and am now in Wuhan (武汉). We flew from Changchun to Beijing (abt 1.5hrs) then after a 3hr stopover, flew from Beijing to Wuhan. We were quite lucky actually. Apparently, Beijing has been experiencing thunderstorms in the afternoons. Just yesterday, over 300 flights were delayed (some by a day!) because of a thunderstorm. When we arrived in Beijing, the weather was nice and sunny! When we arrived into Wuhan, we heard that Beijing was experiencing thunderstorms with floods. Phew. Talk about luck!

Wuhan is supposed to be known as one of the four 'ovens' of China. Temperatures here can reach up to 37 degrees. Sigh. Not looking forward to the hot weather. We'll be here for just a short couple of days before we're off to Shenzhen.

Am already missing laksa and chicken rice.