Monday, June 29, 2015

It's Called Part-Time Not Without Reason

Hey everyone! Believe it or not, semester break is over and before you know it you are now embarking into the new semester and then you will be sitting for your exams and poof! There goes one year... It's hard to accept that time flies so fast with so many things going on in our lives.

It is all the more important to live the life we want (morally that is) so that we will not regret it one day. Life is short. We don't know when's our time to go and when it's time, we have to ask ourselves, what mark do we leave behind during our breathing days?

While we ponder about that, life still goes on and to make the best out of our lives, it is all the more important to get the job and experiences you need. In school, you are exposed to many options about part time jobs in Singapore. Often times we consider salary but is that it? What about the hours? Where? What are the perks? And most importantly, who's your boss going to be?

It's called part-time not without reason. It should only take a part of your time, yet be a meaningful part of your life.

What's the hours like?
It's easy to say you'd take the highest paying job because of its short term nature - usually during holidays. If it's highest paying, does it really mean it's the job worth taking? It's semester break, if you're not going to spend time to socialise with your friends (which is quite important in school), you still need some time to settle school demands like completing assignments and attending supplementary lessons. You wouldn't want to be burnt out and not get the best of both worlds because schooling is one of the most rewarding times in your life.

It's hard to make our juniors understand that, but it's a perpetual cycle: when you grow up, you'd say the exact same thing. So, I wouldn't advise anyone to spend so much time doing their part time job to the extent of missing a huge part of their youth for work. It does supplement your experience but even so, that does not guarantee that you'd get a job these days anyway.

Pick a job that suits your schedule, not your financial ravenousness because what matters is your financial blueprint, not the size of your paycheck.

Tested and proven!

Where? 
Location plays a huge part in your motivation to go to work. Odd jobs shouldn't require you to travel so far or a lot for that matter. I salute those who are working part time at places as remote as Sentosa, standing on stilts parading the Egyptian World at Universal Studios. It's one thing to be admired for their washboard abs, but to go to Sentosa every time to work? Thinking about it tires me already. If that's their motivation though, why not?

As for me, I'd rather work somewhere that's really convenient for me. It does not only saves time, it saves money too! I remember working in town once, it was all prestige and all - which is why businesses want a piece of the address for image sake. Unfortunately, as a student, it was not something for me to leverage upon because for someone who works to save, working in town was an expensive affair.


Oooh, what's in it for me? Like, really.
Part time jobs for students should be filled with hidden perks, really. Unfortunately we live in a state where there's no minimum wage like Australia and Monaco. Otherwise, schools would probably be closed by now because their minimum wages are pretty lucrative. Probably more than what a Singaporean executive would be getting in a month!

Our semester breaks are usually too short to even try to work overseas. So, we are still better off settling for something that is non-monetary, like free lunches and usable goodies perhaps?

As part time workers, you are usually different because you do not have as much perks as compared to the permanent staffs. Say if one were to work in a hotel, they don't usually get company benefits like a heavy discount on staycations or restaurants. Which results in comparable disparity of privileges because most of the full time workers in hospitality are usually foreigners, which a handful of Singaporeans come to look at with disdain.

I don't mean to be xenophobic. That's the reality of the situation when the fact is, most of the chain hotels are foreign owned. Woops! See the irony there?

I love working in hospitality back then because I see things differently. In hospitality, we need to be in our best. Be it our mood, our appearance and behaviour. So most hotels that I had worked with back then offered the basic pay - which I must say, small. However, food was all provided - which means if you're lucky, the soft croissant and muffins you see on the buffet will be yours after; specially delivered from the hotel kitchen to the staff canteen. If you are working till late night, transport is provided for - which I find it fun because there's no traffic and everyone in the hotel is asleep. So it's like being there to look pretty for no one. At the end of the day, you'll save up a lot because the only thing you spend on is probably transport because even your outfit is provided for by the hotel. Wearing the hotel uniform may not be the most glamorous thing but it pays!

Oh! If you are lucky, although one shouldn't expect, you get good tips!

And who am I working with? An..?
Hidden perks are just part of the environment of your workplace, here we are talking about the macro aspect of it. Be it work safety, your colleagues, or the work that you are dealing with, it is vital to crystallize your ideal environment so that you are able to work within your means.

As I said, after all, it's just an odd job.

In an imperfect world like ours, there are some things that we have to forgo; namely the opportunity cost. Some may like doing computer programming, but it may be bad ergonomically. Some may like dispatching, but there are dangers of doing late night delivery too, although I have never seen any correlation in statistics yet.

At the end of the day, we have to ask ourselves, what kind of work environment do we thrive in?

That is going to be a swaying factor to whether you are going to be on the extreme ends of being smitten with it.

Environment is something very personal. Say for some people (like myself), I used to work and help out at events as usher, games station in-charge, or even doing back end jobs like packing goody bags as part of my vocational training. It was fun because you learn to appreciate what we usually won't because we simply don't see it!

You have no idea how tiring it was. No matter, it was fulfilling because no one in the events industry would say they did not have a good sleep right after! That was definitely a valuable thing to learn when I was a student back then! I discern my beauty sleep outweighs all those heavy lifting.

Only kidding!

Employers too need to realize that with students taking on part time jobs Singapore opportunities, our country is geared up for a more vibrant economy where they know what real life work is about. Without morale boost or value-added tasks for them to do, it would be putting our human capital on a downward spiral. They now can think on their own feet thanks to technology. Wouldn't we want to make them relevant and more connected for their future?

Their future is going to shape our fate too. It would suck to be living in a world of inept while you are conscious and incapacitated on a wheelchair.

Hope you are entertained by my thoughts about part time jobs because many must have been asking about what type of job they should do. So here's just a thought on what you guys should look out for!

Good luck!

Monday, June 22, 2015

Trick Eye Museum Singapore First Anniversary

Last Friday was a blast at Trick Eye Museum Singapore celebrating their first anniversary! Happy birthday Trick Eye Museum Singapore! Trick Eye Museum Singapore is the first foreign Trick Eye Museum that branched out of its home country South Korea. Located at Resorts World Sentosa, Trick Eye Museum Singapore officially opened its doors to public in June 2014. It is the first 3D museum in Singapore!


At their anniversary event, Trick Eye Museum held a special activity Grab the Gold Key, it’s not a Trick! where there were ten gold keys for grabs! Weighing 3.75 grams each, it was given away to ten lucky winners!


The ten gold keys were locked up in a cage held captive by the Giant Baby. Everyone who were at the Trick Eye Museum Singapore, and shared a photo taken at the museum on their social media had a chance to pick a key out of a big pool of keys on that day. It would be the key which they can use for their attempt to open the cage. Successful attempts to open the cage would bring home a gold key.

Here was my attempt...


It started with a briefing after getting our tickets stamped and signed because it only allows you one attempt. Additional briefing includes not being allowed to take more than one key from the lucky dip, and declaring that you have posted with the relevant hashtags: #trickeyesg #trickeyeturnsone #goldtrickeye...

"Ooooh!"

That was my expression with the hope that I might get the gold key. Anyone would go through that red tape for about SGD200 worth of gold! Anything that comes from mining is always better off than paper money.


I got my key! I tried putting it in into the keyhole to see if it fits in the first place. If it doesn't fit, why even have anymore hope?


It fits! I was half way there! Half filled with optimism! The key was to open the padlock, so fitting in the key does not do. I tried opening it.


I turned the key left and right, and kept trying! It did not turn! Oh my God! This is not happening!


Luck was not on me, not on that day! With reluctance I returned the key. If only I could return them with two keys, that would just add on to the number of keys in the pool. Hehe! Still, it was just a game in the name of fun!

Congratulations to all winners; especially if you are a tourist because you have brought home something valuable from Singapore!

If you did not win just like yours truly, we are on the same Merlion... Look at all the fins I give!


Drop by Trick Eye Museum today by making your bookings here and save up to 20%.

Trick Eye Museum Singapore
26 Sentosa Gateway
Resorts World Sentosa
Singapore 098138
Telephone: +65 6795 2370

Find out more on how to get the full experience at Trick Eye Museum Singapore here.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Valentino F/W 2015

Dropped by Valentino this week to check out their new collection! Looking forward to see their entire men's collection coming to Singapore soon! Anyway, here's an inspiration for some of you since we are moving into the second half of the year with more festivities coming up, we need to dress well for the occasion!


This season, Valentino features sensuality and independence.

For Valentino’s F/W 2015 collection, Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli capture the essence of the world of contemporary women, portraying its changes and evolution.

From their modern perspective, the two creative directors recognize signs of modernity in two unconventional people, both artist and muse: Emilie Flöge and Celia Birtwell.

These two different women share a singular approach to life: they combine fragility and sensuality and give strength and depth to modest grace.


The inevitable icons of the new Valentino collection follow the season's moods and evolve. Rockstud comes in a color block version that contrasts with black, while knotted fringe and braids are boho touches.



Clothes become an artist's canvas on which exquisite intarsia from scenes and landscapes is harmoniously expressed through prints, seeking cosmic conjunctions and motifs of astral inspiration.


Opulent sensuality is expressed through floral prints and butterfly motifs that are the result of the collaboration with Celia Birtwell and are given a luminous touch through raised metallic threads and contrasts of stripes, triangles and geometric shapes.


Light materials such as chiffon and lace contrast with heavy felt, while shades of gold, ivory, green, pale blue and pink blend in the palette dominated by absolute graphic black.

These are just a few of its glamorous composition! To find out more, please visit VALENTINO at:

ION Orchard
2 Orchard Turn
#01-03
Singapore 238801

Thank you Accesscomms for the invite!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Tomorrow: Trick Eye Museum Singapore's First Anniversary!

Hey everyone! If you have not been to the Trick Eye Museum Singapore, tomorrow will be the perfect time to go as they will be celebrating their first year anniversary!

Trick Eye Museum Singapore will be celebrating its first year anniversary on 19 June 2015, tomorrow! As a way of giving thanks to the tremendous support received over the year, Trick Eye Museum will be holding a special activity - Grab the Gold Key, it’s not a Trick!

The family friendly museum will be awarding ten gold keys (yes, talking about the real deal!) to ten lucky winners.



The highlight of Trick Eye Museum Singapore is the 2.4 meter Giant Baby exhibit which is the largest sculpture created by Trick Eye Museum. 10 gold keys will be locked up in the cage held captive by Giant Baby during the anniversary celebration.

Here's how to play - it's just a Singaporean thing, we prepare for everything even if it's just a game: Everyone who visit Trick Eye Museum Singapore and shared a photo taken at the museum on their social media platform will each have a chance to pick a key out of a big pool of keys on that day. It will be the key which they can use for their attempt to open the cage. All successful attempts to open the cage will each bring home a gold key! Easy!

So now all of us have an idea how to play the game! Since it's Friday weekend tomorrow, come down the Trick Eye Museum with me! As there are only 10 gold keys, come down fast and let's hope there's still chance for you when you're there. Otherwise, fret not!

We can always take selfies together or...


Get their limited and exclusively designed tote bags! So we have to be there early just in case it runs out! There will also be a do-it-yourself corner at the museum for us to personalize our bags with their rubber stamps. Cute!

Get your tickets to the famed Trick Eye Museum Singapore here and will see you there tomorrow at the anniversary opening! If this will be your first time, find out more how you can get the full experience at the Trick Eye Museum here.

Singapura: The Musical - World Premiere!


I have not been to a musical for a very long time so it got me excited when I heard about Singapura: The Musical for several reasons. I have never been to a musical that relates to Singapore's history because I felt like I know quite a lot about it from the textbook. Duh, so Singaporean. Everything seems to be on the book. Which is why to learn history in the rendition of musical could be an exciting alternative. Also, I am elated to be able to watch the musical about Singapore in conjunction with SG50, in one of most historical theatres in Singapore - Capitol Theatre!


I know right, there's so many hoo-haas and hype about SG50. In case you are out of touch with this little island, this republic will turn fifty since independence!


Capitol Theatre is beautiful! It's so modern and chic, with lots of vintage touch to it. It is a combination of Rococo, and Bickford-Smith's inspired designs in The Great Gatsby.


Singapura: The Musical, what is it all about?

This world premiere takes the audience through a journey of love, hope, and new beginnings while exploring the strength of the human spirit during the formative years of Singapore’s history from 1955 to 1965. Through the eyes of ordinary men and women, audiences will witness how hope and youthful determination transcend the struggles of everyday life during this time period as Singaporeans strive towards a better future for themselves and their loved ones. Their passion and drive sees them dreaming, hoping and creating – against all odds – a place where they can truly call home.


I read some reviews about the musical before going and it was hard to decide if I should even go.

I just went for it though because it's been awhile since I met one of my friends. Like finally we met after so long? It was unfortunate our timing was usually never right. Since both of us were available, I said, why not? If the show was going to be terrible and sluggish I could either walk out (which is rude to do), or fall asleep (lesser of two evils). Turns out, I did not walk out until intermission, and I did not fall asleep! I can't do them anyway, the show was not on me! Haha!

The musical was interesting but not all for good reason.

There were several reasons why I was awake. Otherwise I wouldn't be here sharing with you everything I am thinking about the musical.


The musical hugely portrays our history which an expected turn of chronological events so when it comes to that, reading would suffice. I expected it to be more theatrical for its dramatic appeal. Perhaps, we can have one of them harnessed up in the air as a metaphor she's dead? Rather than having her "dead character" literally walk up the a la scaffolding prop. Doesn't it add more symbolism and metaphor to the message? Not saying it should be anywhere close to a circus performance with trapeze and stunts but with a USD$2 million production cost, how expensive can that harness and its insurance be?

I would give the benefit of the doubt given Capitol Theatre being newly refurbished, and considerably small for a musical like this. The three huge a la scaffolding props are taking up a lot of space like they're right in your face. Wouldn't be much of a problem if it's a wider stage.


Casting wise, I would give an A for effort in terms non-skin picking attempt for diversity. Is it really diverse though? I have no opinion on that. Performance wise, I would give a C. Word has it they have a mix of Singaporeans and overseas casts. Sure they can sing and it can only be better if their character can be seen as naturally Singaporean. I think as actors, one should really be in the mood and living it up to the character. Which means to say you have to speak our pidgins or Singlish well, not just right! Haha! I don't think it would be Superman movie if he holds on to a Mjolnir would it, because the disparity in the act just won't add up.


The accent and assimilation to the character's language I feel is so important in setting the mood because it portrays the literal Singapore identity. This probably say two things about the casts. It's either they are not well assimilated to the Singaporean culture to live up to it in the act, or they're just not well taught by the Singaporeans who are part of the production. Shrugs.

Nevertheless, there's always a first!

Other than that, the musical could have had a better focus, can be improved or tweaked over time before it sets on world tour. It is applaudable that Singapore is a red dot on the world map, and they will be dotting the show all over the globe soon.

Despite all those, I would still recommend my friends to watch Singapura: The Musical because it covers certain aspect of very personal and touchy issues of that time. While portrayal of Hock Lee bus riots and the 1964 race riots was integral in Singapore's history, the rendering of reaction towards inter-racial relationship, and how some families provided asylum to people of different races during that period gives a broader viewpoint about how the political game can affect people's sentiment towards other races. If only they had dived deeper into that in the musical.

It is also heartwarming to know that Ed Gathcalian, the composer of this musical made an attempt to understand history through his art. It is applaudable for a non-Singaporean to have an interest in Singapore's history, something a true born Singaporean should learn from.


Since it's the June holidays for most of us, it's a good time to go and get cultured!

Thank you Elf for the wonderful invitation! It's been a long time since we met!

Click here to book your tickets.


The event is held at:
Capitol Theatre
17 Stamford Road
Singapore 178907

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Coming Soon: Gravity World Tour!

Here's an exciting news coming our way! To all Against The Current (ATC) fans in Singapore, they are coming to this republic as part of their Gravity World Tour! If you are going, remember to bring your spirit and support for them! In case you forgot, or do not know how they look like, here's a picture of them!


After a very successful Australia/Asia tour last year, YouTube sensation Against The Current (ATC) led by highly admired Chrissy Costanza, will be coming back to Singapore for their Gravity World Tour.

They have been busy with the release of their latest extended play (EP) Gravity and a couple of new single releases including the latest single Dreaming Alone featuring Taka from ONE OK ROCK.



ATC is now in the good hands of Fueled By Ramen, Warner Music’s subsidiary. They now stand side by side with prominent bands like Panic! At The Disco, Gym Class Heroes, Paramore, Fun, Cobra Starship and many more.

I just found out that the VIP and early bid tickets are sold out. Like, two categories sold out since it started to go on sale just last week? Really got to click for the tickets fast because I have a premonition that the rest of the tickets will be sold out, especially closer to the date. Judging from the size of The Ground Theatre, I don't think there's much space for those who book late?

Nevertheless, click here if you want to book your tickets and here's one of my favorites from ATC. See you in the next update!



Gravity World Tour details:
31 August 2015, Monday
*SCAPE The Ground Theatre
7.30pm -10.30 pm

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Singapore Comedy Fringe 2015

Hey everyone! It's good to be back this week to share with you guys about last week's event at The Singapore Repertory Theatre - DBS Arts Centre. Singapore had a good laugh being entertained by more than 30 comedians from all over the world in its return of the annual Singapore Comedy Fringe 2015! Yay!


Singapore Comedy Fringe 2015 was a five-day event that featured a line-up of preeminent regional and international comedic talents like Harith Iskandar (Malaysia), Vir Das (India), Butch Bradley (USA) and many more.

The fringe focuses on rising trans-Asian comedy stars with a host of international acts which makes it ingenious and unique. It has been seven years since The Comedy Club Asia premiered this event and they have seen a thriving growth of talents from countries such as Malaysia, Philippines and Hong Kong.


It is an ideal platform for these rising stars to share the stage alongside acclaimed comedians.

I am very thankful to be able to witness most of them on stage and as a Singaporean son myself, I had a great laugh at the Sons of Singapore show featuring must-knows and they are Fakkah Fuzz, Jinx Yeo and Rishi Budhrani!

Fakkah Fuzz
Fakkah Fuzz is one of the fastest rising talents in Singapore's comedy scene. He has performed in local open mics and shows for four years and has received positive reviews from local media such as The Straits Times Life!, Berita Harian, The New Paper and Channel NewsAsia.

In 2012, Fuzz made his debut in Hong Kong with TakeOut Comedy, and was featured as one of the headline acts for a monthly show in Kuala Lumpur. He has also spearheaded and headlined a local stand up comedy show called Sons Of Singapore which he headlined and produced. In late 2012, he has also co-headlined the Comedy Week at Singapore’s biggest Stand Up comedy circuit with The Comedy Club Asia. Fuzz has also performed in other parts of asia such as Cambodia with The Comedy Club and Indonesia with Singapore's comedy veteran Hossan Leong.


On top of that, he has also co-written and acted in a local TV sketch comedy show with MediaCorp called Random Island which airs on Channel 5. In 2013, he was named one of the Top 10 Comedians of Asia by Top 10 Asia magazine and has also won first place in a local Stand Up Comedy competition Stand Up For Singapore.

Interestingly, Fuzz started off being a comedian by doing it for fun during his rock band gig intermission. The organizers then asked if he wants to host the event and they loved it. He has always been inspired by comedians like Martin Lawrence and Dave Chapelle. Soon, you can catch his regular show Fridays with Fuzz, details on location has yet to be confirmed but word has it will be somewhere central. You can find latest updates here!

Jinx Yeo
Jinx Yeo’s unique style of humour won him the first runner-up at the 2011 Hong Kong International Comedy Competition. He has shared the stage supporting comedy heavyweights such as Emo Philips, Arj Barker, Paul Ogata, as well as Hollywood star and "Saturday Night Live" veteran Rob Schneider. Having performed in Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, China, and also at the famous Melbourne Comics Lounge, as well as the Sydney Comedy Festival 2013. Jinx is one of the most international comedians from Singapore. His joke about colonization had everyone broke into a roar of applause!


He started off about four years ago, a friend invited him to watch open mic comedy -  a space for anyone to go on stage and try out their funny stories. He didn't know there are such places for amateurs like him to perform back then. He admitted he got stage fright but that got him rolling!

You can catch him on Wednesdays at Arts House. He performs there most of the time, not regularly. So, you gotta check that out with The Comedy Club!

Rishi Budhrani
Voted as one of the top 10 comedians in Asia for 2013, Rishi has proved time and again to be an excellent performer. After winning the HK International Comedy Competition, he went on to become the first Singaporean to perform at prestigious clubs like Gotham Comedy Club, The Comic Strip Live in NYC, The Comedy Store in LA and ACME Comedy Club in Minneapolis. Regionally, Rishi has headlined shows in Kuala Lumpur, Jakarta, Saigon, Phnom Penh and Hong Kong.


Rishi came into the comedy domain in 2011, in his corporate training business he pointed out that being comedian is one of the best ways to learn public speaking. He then decided to try it out by starting off at Open Mic Comedy. Despite being well versed in public speaking training, he is still nervous! He mentioned that the day he stops feeling jitters, he'd stop doing what he's doing. He used to keep a Word document:Craps.doc where all his jokes were penned down. He never used it until his first performance at the open mic. Turns out, it was well received!

His residency is coming soon, details will probably be out in August hopefully. You can find his updates here.

Sons of Singapore is so apt and on point for Singaporeans and I hope to catch more of it next year!

Singapore Comedy Fringe 2015 was held at:
DBS Art Centre, Home of the Singapore Repertory Theater
20 Merbau Road, Singapore 239035

Monday, June 8, 2015

Best of Dubai and Abu Dhabi!

To wrap up my collection of Dubai adventures, I would like to thank my friends for such wonderful hospitality and companion throughout my stay in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

I would like to thank Malaysia Airlines for their wonderful hospitality. Their hospitality made me feel like I have friends throughout my flight to laugh and kid with, keeping their professionalism in check. The food was amazing albeit I never liked flight food. I would expect to sleep on my journey but I didn't! It goes to say something about how entertained I was. It really defines MH - Malaysian Hospitality.

Also, would like give some love to Ferrari World Abu Dhabi for being so ever wonderful to bring me on a tour despite such busy period. It is an honor and I really appreciate it a lot. If there could be any better gift, it would be my wish for Farah Leisure Parks Management team to be blessed with great successes in the future.

Adding on to the list is Observation Deck at 300 for the well curated high tea with such stunning view. I also would like to thank you for the wonderful personalised souvenir you gave and my wish is for you to stand tall in Abu Dhabi as ever!

To Capital Gate Hyatt, I would like to thank you for arranging such wonderful and warm reception. You have one of the most attentive butlers and staff running around, which made things very, very seamless for me and I am grateful for that especially in the mid of the trip, everything starts to get messy and you're there to help to sort things out! Also it was because of Capital Gate Hyatt I get to learn in depth about the Emiratis.

Lastly, of course, to Sheraton Jumeirah Beach Resort, thank you for the wonderful surprise. I was caught off guard really. Your cheesy sticks are the best, and I love it! I was not wrong to choose to patronize Sheraton Jumeirah Beach Resort because there may be a lot of private beaches out there but nothing beats kindness with initiative.

So if you are ever going to Dubai or Abu Dhabi, remember to pay them a visit and experience it first hand!

Let me me entertain you with a video montage of my trip to Dubai and Abi Dhabi, featuring amazing places like the largest indoor theme park Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, scenic high tea at Observation Deck at 300 at Jumeirah (Etihad Towers), wonderful beach at Sheraton Jumeirah Beach Resort, the furthest leaning hotel Hyatt Capital Gate, breathtaking fireworks at the tallest building Burj Khalifa and many more.


Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Kuantan and Terengganu, 2015

Hey, how's everyone? I am exhilarated to share with you one of the most exciting trips I had this month and this time, it's Kuantan! It's not a long trip because it's quite close to home, about eight hours drive or so, which makes it eligible to be labeled as road trip. Especially because we drove along the east coast of West Malaysia, skipping the highway altogether.


It was a roller coaster ride up and down the hill! If you love road trips like myself, the east coast route is the way to go because there are so many places you can stop by to eat and rest along the way, without having to drive another kilometer to the nearest pit stop.

Kuantan, Kuantan, the name sounds foreign. Where is it exactly?


Kuantan, the state capital of Pahang, is located on the east side of West Malaysia, approximately 400km from Johor. Apart from being famous for its pretty beaches, it is also famous for their handicrafts and fried fish crackers. You have not visited Kuantan if you leave that place not knowing what Keropok Lekor is. Kuantan is very, very famous for that.


The state is an epitome of what's left from the 60's and earlier, with hopes of progress through its major development projects. So, expect to be wooed by modern facilities there in say, five to ten years time. Don't be disheartened by what's there now because if you are there today, you can still be pampered in integrated hotels like Zenith Hotel that hovers over the smaller buildings in town and The East Coast mall across owned by conglomerate CapitaLand.


We just roamed the streets of Kuantan because we reached late afternoon and we wanted to rest and freshen up. By then it was already evening so we had dinner and explored the town by foot. I've got to say they have friendly drivers who would give way to pedestrians, contrary to what I usually see in urban Kuala Lumpur where they would not stop to let you pass. Salute to that!


On the second day we drove up to Terengganu which was quite funny because I decided to wear shorts and then I was reminded that Terengganu is a pretty conservative Islamic state. I decided to bring along a pair of jeans, just in case. I don't think you'd go to jail for wearing shorts but I wouldn't want to be looked at out of the corner of one's eye either. Turns out, no issues on wearing shorts for men! However, wearing conservatively is still advised to blend in because you will not feel sexy wearing sexy there. Go against my word, and tell me how it goes!


From Kuantan to Terengganu is about two hours drive. The weather was torridle! Yeap, a combination of torrid and horrible. Really, it burns. It was so hot and dry I almost drank Tasik Chini (Chini Lake). It seems like the locals are used to it because you can find cooling drinks like grass jelly and coconut drink stalls dotted along the way.


Here's the wonderful thing about driving through the rural areas because the North-South Highway is just full of palm plantations, you don't really get to see much along the road but the same old same view. Here, you get to see where one of Malaysia's assets - oil, is rigged and processed. It's unbelievable to know that Terengganu was actually one of the poorest states in Malaysia until oil was discovered in the 80's.


Till this point, some of you may be like, you're there just for that?

Of course not! I don't follow on a road trip, to be seated for more than 10 hours for this journey in a car exposed to the unforgiving heat just to see how oil is rigged! No way in hell I would do that. I'd better off watching Discovery Channel if I wanted to see that. I was there for Pasar Payang - a famous wet market by Sungai Terengganu (Terengganu River)!


Pasar Payang is the local central market, offering a variety of traditional handicrafts such as batik, silk, songket, brocade and brassware, as well as fresh produce.

For those who loves durian, you will be in for a treat because they have durians of different types and grades. I just can't tell the difference, because I loathe this fruit. It's so ironic that when I was a kid, I love this fruit because it tasted milky and sweet. So much so I would lick the residue off my mum's fingers but now, I can't even tolerate the smell.

Laugh all you want but to me it's the least sexy fruit to eat, let alone the smell!


I settled for something varied instead. I went for street food! All these fried stuff I bought to eat on the way back to Kuantan but ended up finishing them even before the trip back started. As much as I love food like these, I'll tell you what I was looking for exactly...


I like exotic food like shark's fin soup, rabbit's meat, horse meat or whatever game food there is, I can be sure, there can never be any more exotic delicacy than turtle's egg in Terengganu! They're worth a king's ransom for several reasons. For one, it's reported that the cholesterol level for turtle eggs is ten times more than chicken eggs; cost relativity perhaps? Second, most of the eggs actually go to conservation efforts to produce more turtles leaving the supply for consumption low - which I hope is all darn true because we need more turtles to produce more turtle eggs.


Science is so inconclusive about its cholesterol level I couldn't care less!


Word also has it that it's a natural aphrodisiac giving excessive masculinity. Sounds promising, no? Definitely was feeling #YOLO when I sucked on those eggs. The last time I consumed turtle eggs was like eight years ago? Foreseeing the same story would happen, we bought like two packs of them, a mixture of half boiled and full boiled to be eaten with rice.

The eggs were cold when it was sold so we brought it back to our hotel room and reheat it using the boiler. It taste so good! Its yolk consistency is a little bit like custard. All gone by the end of the trip, now I really need to burn those cholesterol away.

Moving on to the last day of our road trip, we headed back through the same route stopping by Mersing, about 100km off Johor Bahru. We wanted to buy fresh uncooked fish crackers to eat at home and there was this famous store nearby. These fish crackers tastes good and the crunchy ones are best eaten with famous Malay fried rice - Nasi Goreng Kampung. The store has dried fish and other dried seafood products, probably haven for those who spends a lot of time in the kitchen cooking because they know what dried fishes are used for.


Then came drama...

I was in the car waiting for things to be loaded into the boot and then heard about an accident that happened like a few seconds then. Suddenly everyone's attention was on the scene. My dad as usual, went to over to see what's going on, asked me to take out his first aid kit and went over to help. The guy was half conscious and bleeding, luckily not profusely. Even so, his head was injured so it was quite nail biting while the ambulance was on its way.


Incidents like this does not require act of valour but out of humanity. It is only right that we help as much within our means. On another note, these kind of circumstances can tell us a lot about the environment we are in.

Yeah, my dad is probably a real life superhero - Marvel should just turn him into one of their characters! It was vivid in my head he saved a child's hand that was stuck in a gashapon (I find it hilarious because the mum was crying hysterically how her child might lost his hand while the public stopped eating to look at the scene - it was intensely quiet), and a few years ago he put out a car fire at the immigration checkpoint (and someone just had to Stomp it), and then this week he attended to this accident.

Looks like his free time has more action than his job. Haha!

Once the ambulance carried the casualty away we headed for dinner and my vintage Marc Jacobs X Pan Am bag just had to give way! Urgh! Nevermind, it's about time anyway but it's rare and hard to find! I don't know if I should find a way to salvage it because what gave way are the metal D-rings and its adjustable buckle.


It's vintage and serves as a great utility bag for trips like this so I'm really torn about salvaging this bag! Any help?


Hope you are entertained reading about my road trip! Till then!