Archive for the Interesting Encounters Category

End of semester is near…and that’s why I’m super busy now.

Posted in Interesting Encounters on May 24, 2017 by vincentloy

In few more weeks, I will be going back to Malaysia after this semester is done. The end is near and so there are a lot of assignments’ deadlines coming up and I have a lot of works to rush on. That is inevitable for life of an architecture student. The only consolation we have is that we don’t have any examinations and that we can return home early than the others. I on the other hand, somehow prefer to rather sit for examination than facing tons of assignments to complete. I just need to spend some time like about two to three days before the test to revise on the books. But for the assignments, I have to work like mad for many weeks.

Hence, I won’t be reaching my blog here that often especially in these few crucial weeks that will decide whether I would be ending this semester with satisfying result. You would have noticed that I also didn’t post any movie review recently. It is something that I love to do after I have watched several new films. But not for now anymore as I don’t have time or even the mood to watch them recently due to the pressure from my study. I’m actually looking forward to watch ‘Alien: Covenant’ and ‘Wonder Woman’ which is coming out next week if I’m not mistaken. I’ll wait till the end of the semester for them.

Recently, I’m touched by Celine Dion in her performance (watch video below) in Billboard Music Awards 2017 when she sang her iconic classic, ‘My Heart Will Go On’, the theme song for the epic hit 1997 movie ‘Titanic’. I can’t believe this year marks the 20th anniversary of that movie and also of the song. I’m old. Who doesn’t love this song and get touched by it? Even the strongest man’s heart will melt after hearing the song. And the movie topped it off. She gave a powerful performance that evening and ended with a minute-long standing ovation from all the audiences in the awards show. She is no doubt a great singer…a legend. She did came to the awards last year too to receive the Billboard Icon Award. Last year was a tragic year for her as she lost her husband as well as her brothers (two days later after her husband’s death). Now, she stand strong back and return to perform. What a great diva. Awesome dress too.

She is having a show yesterday’s evening and she took the opportunity to invite the crowds to send prayer and thought to those who lost their lives recently in Manchester’s terrorist attack. The attack which the IS already claimed responsibility took lives of 22 person including children. Bombs were detonated at the foyer of the Manchester Arena right after the conclusion of Ariane Grande concert at the time when many people were leaving the venue. It was believed to be conducted by a suicide bomber. It’s really depressing to see more of such tragic events happening across the world.

And so, the two weeks of my holiday ends!

Posted in Interesting Encounters on April 21, 2017 by vincentloy

The holiday disappeared! I didn’t go out for any vacation and I didn’t have a single day totally dedicated to be off-assignment day. Two weeks of mid-semester break is gone just like that. What have I been doing the past two weeks? I have been working on my assignments and still they are not completely finished. There is actually a long way to go to have them finished. I’m also trying my very best to be productive during the break but I just can’t. I have to get my comfy sleep and I just can’t let those assignments to ruin my mood everyday. There will be a major design studio submission next Friday. Wish me luck…

I thought I would of at least watch three new movies in this holiday since I got some ‘so-called’ free time and there are quite a number of nice movies out now. However, I ended up to have watched only one; ‘The Fate of the Furious’. You can check out my review to this movie in my previous blog post. The movie set the record for the biggest opening weekend worldwide, beating the previous record holder, ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’. Now, it is on track to be the second movie of 2017 to gross over US$ 1 billion in worldwide box office, after ‘Beauty and the Beast’ which had just achieved that milestone not long ago. ‘The Fate of the Furious’ didn’t really perform that well in US but it did exceptionally well in all oversea markets.

During this holiday, I have been spending my time working on my assignments while listening to music. Those who are familiar with me will know that I like Sammi Cheng’s songs a lot. She is a Hong Kong singer and actress and she is famously called as Cantopop Diva due to her immense success in entertainment industry. Recently, I kept repeating this side-track song medley by her. I think it’s a collection of some of her unpopular songs she released many years ago. She has over 100 songs and so there are some that are not given the deserved attention inevitably. You can listen it below if you understand Cantonese. Even if you don’t, you can also just enjoy the melody that sounds very nice.

That’s it for my blog update. I have to get back to my ‘never-complete’ studio works.

A much needed break is finally here.

Posted in Interesting Encounters on April 8, 2017 by vincentloy

Yes. My 2-weeks long mid-semester break has arrived. I have waited a long time for this. Every semester, there would be two separate tuition-free weeks. In this semester, the two weeks are on one after another. A 2 continuous weeks to enjoy. It is good for those who plan to take a long trip elsewhere during this break. But it ain’t good for me who prefer to use the time wisely for rest and for my assignments. Thinking of the excessive number of free days in this break, I would easily becoming very lazy and unmotivated to do any work. If the holiday is only a week, then I knew I have to manage my time well to gain the most out of the free week. And then, there will be also another 1 week of break left later on that would be good. Now, it’s all put together, and after this, it’s all pressure to get this semester done.

My housemate even asked why I don’t use this time to go back to Malaysia since I am the nearest to my home country compared to all the other five housemates in my residence. Well, if I go back, it will carry away my concentration and I don’t think I will be doing anything much on my assignments already. Since I will be back on mid of the year later, I won’t take the trouble to return again as plane ticket is not cheap though. Now, I will just prepare a timetable for this 2-weeks of break, allocating about three quarters of it to work on my assignments in no-rush mode and the remaining time for chilling. What a best feeling when I don’t have to set any alarm for the next morning now on every night.

Talking about Malaysia, I was recently very alerted by a statement from a politician. If you are a Malaysian, I’m sure you know what viral topic I will be talking about. He mentioned that a rapist need to just marry the rape victim in order to avoid from being sentenced. He further added that even 9-years old girl can get married if she reach puberty early by that age. I can’t believe that people with such mindset still exist. And the worst thing, he is a politician, a figure who is helping to run the country. How is Malaysia going to be a nation with advanced society with people like this?! I’m sure there will be a number of people supporting such statement too and this is such a disgust. It’s against everything. And I haven’t even started on some other funny and viral topics in Malaysia recently such as the return of the ‘Raja Bomoh’ and his idiotic rituals and his claim that he has been protecting the country for 70 years since his birth. Hahaha…You will get entertained just by reading some news from Malaysia.

 

Goodbye Malaysia….I’m back to Perth.

Posted in Interesting Encounters on February 22, 2017 by vincentloy

Goodbye Malaysia! I have come to Perth for my final year of postgraduate study. I arrived here yesterday early morning and got back to my house accommodation in the afternoon. I spent the whole day yesterday unpacking my stuff and buying the needed groceries. It was tiring but it’s really good to come back to the same room I had stayed on last year. It’s also lovely to know that the laundry in my accommodation is now free! Yes!

Once I got here, the first thing I’m surprised with is the weather. It is right now summer in Australia but the weather is chilling. It is supposed to be nearing 40 degree celsius in the afternoon but the temperature couldn’t even get past 25 degree celsius. I felt like I am on Genting Highlands right now with the current temperature. At night, the temperature even dropped to around 10 degree celsius. Well, I don’t need to be that happy so soon for not encountering extremely hot weather. It’s because the weather forecast stated that this weekend is going to be hot with temperature rising to nearly 40 degree celsius to match the supposed-to-be summer season now.

The semester hasn’t started yet and so I’m still quite free right now. I will take the time to walk around in the campus and visit the city once again. I can’t wait to meet back my fellow classmates and also to get to know two new housemates in my flat this year. My first class of the semester is on next Tuesday and I’m informed recently that there is no orientation session for us this year. Damn…if I knew it earlier, I would not be coming to Australia so soon so that I can enjoy my break in Malaysia a bit longer.

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Time flies. I still remembered very well how much I’m anticipating to return to Malaysia on the past November for my long break. Now, the break was over and I’m back here. Very soon, I will be finishing the programme and graduates.

(Copyright reserved to the image in this blog post. Kindly request permission if you intend to use it for any purpose.)

Few more days in Malaysia before flying back to Perth

Posted in Interesting Encounters on February 16, 2017 by vincentloy

My excessively long three-months school break is finally ending soon. Next week is already the Orientation Week at the campus but that is none of my business since it is for newcomers. The semester will only start on the week after, but I will be flying back to Perth next Monday already. Hence, I have only few more days here in Malaysia to enjoy before all the stress from the study strikes again for this final year.

What I have mostly done in the past three months?

Changed my room’s appearance

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Once I’m back to my home last November, I couldn’t stand the messiness and the past poor arrangement of furniture in my small little bedroom. Besides than cleaning up the whole room to make it pleasant to atay in, I also bought new study table, chair, bedside table and some accessories from IKEA while throwing away some old stuff. I also hanged an image of Hong Kong city skyline in puzzle I completed some time ago, and placed some decorations on wall mounted planes (also from IKEA). Now my room doesn’t look like a store room anymore.

Watched a lot of movies

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Yes, I watched a lot of movies since I have all the time in this long holiday. This period (November to January) is the best time for me to catch up on some last year’s films that I have missed earlier as well as chasing all the Oscar-bait films that were typically released within that period too. Watching movie is one of my most favourite things to do as you tend to forget about everything else and just immerse into the drama and fun of those films.

Went for vacations

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During the Chinese New Year, I went to Hanoi, Vietnam with my parents and got to see breathtaking places like Tam Coc and Halong Bay. That 5 days 4 nights trip was a great one. We followed a tour group of only 14 people (the lesser the better) and we find it was worth the price that we have paid. Another new country checked on my list of countries that I have traveled to before. Not long after that, I also went up to Genting Highlands (I count that as a vacation too) to enjoy the colder air up there, visit the new Sky Avenue shopping mall and to try my luck (I won a bit in the end).

Rot at home

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Most of the time, I was just in my home, rotting. Well, that is the essence of holiday when you just get to do nothing. Afternoon nap, watching a movie or two in a day, Hong Kong series marathon, playing games, searching for random stuff online, surfing Facebook twice in an hour and not setting any clock alarm are all possible in this break. The next time I got to have this kind of break again is on this end of June for my mid-year break. Now, I have to be prepared to turn off my ‘lazy’ mode.

(Images in this post are from various sources throughout the world wide web) 

Last trip to Genting last weekend before flying back to Australia again

Posted in Interesting Encounters on February 7, 2017 by vincentloy

Since I have returned to Malaysia for my study break last November, I always wanted to go up to Genting at least once before I’m returning to Australia again for my study. That wish is fulfilled when I got to go up to that famous mountain resort last weekend with my parents. It would be a big wish if I am still a child because I remember how much I wanted to go up there with my whole family when I was a little kid for all the fun at the theme parks there. Now, the only reason we go up there (being an adult already) is the ‘fun’ from the casino.

I can’t believe that I’m still getting free room promotion up until now at the First World Hotel which is now the largest hotel in the world in term of number of rooms since the addition of an annex building to the Tower 2 not long ago. Complimentary room….now that’s good as I got to save money on the room for something else. There is a visible change to Genting Highlands since I last visited it over a year ago. The construction for the new outdoor theme park called 20th Century Fox World to replace the old one is still on-going and I find that their progress is very slow. Perhaps the frequent misty weather is not helping the construction site. Its opening has been delayed several times and now I’m guess the long-awaited theme park (will be the world’s first 20th Century Fox World theme park) will only be ready by 2018. Part of the previous land on the former outdoor theme park is also allocated for a new shopping mall called Sky Avenue and it has been partially opened when I visited it last weekend.

This Sky Avenue has over 70 new restaurants (Dragon-I, Madam Kwan’s, Absolute Thai, Morganfield’s, Burger & Lobster, Malaysian Food Street, etc) and retail shops (Adidas, Samsung, Padini, Giordano, G2000, Puma, Skechers, etc). Besides that, it has three atriums, with one of them decorated with huge LED screens all around for a magical visual display for visitors. There would also be a new casino in here (not opened yet) as well as a cable car ride at the Awana Skyway (already opened) linked to this building. I guess this Sky Avenue Mall will be fully ready together with the opening of the outdoor theme park in 2018. An impressive new addition to the mountain resort that has been here for almost 50 years. A transformation is needed to keep Genting ‘alive’ and this Sky Avenue is part of it. Next time, we will have more choices for places to dine and we can even do great shopping up there. By the way, do not confuse this mall with Genting Premium Outlet, another mall under construction currently at the lower level of the peak.

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As for my luck in the casino, I won only RM100 after two days of playing. I only played roulette. On Saturday’s afternoon before dinner, I lost RM300 on the roulette table. It is so hard to play the table one because the minimum bet is RM20. That is so expensive. Only the rich can play them now. Not me. After dinner of which we met our relatives coincidentally, I went in to the casino again to try my luck. This time, I played the roulette on machine because their minimum bet is much lower at RM5 and I won back RM300. That’s no win and no loss at the end of the day. Before leaving Genting on Sunday afternoon, I went into the casino with my dad again and this time I won from playing the machine’s roulette. Well, only RM100 as mentioned earlier. Well, better than nothing. I tend to spend quite a long time in casino not because I’m an addict to gambling, but because I like to see other people’s games in the casino and all their drama from either winning or losing. I also enjoyed being stopped by the guard at the casino’s entrances to check my identification because it means I look younger than 21 years old, the minimum age to enter the casino. Haha…

We also visited the Genting Visitor Gallery to explore the success stories behind the resort’s founder, the late Tan Sri Lim Goh Tong. We and many other people usually just passed by that area without noticing this gallery. This time, we finally went in to catch a glimpse of the history of the resort. There are a lot of images of the founder or his son (Tan Sri Lim Kok Thay, now the boss of the resort) with foreign dignitaries, prime ministers, famous people, etc as well as a huge replica model of the whole Genting Highlands on display in this rather small gallery.

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Yesterday, me and my family finally had a better ‘reunion’ dinner. Better here means more costly compared to the much more economical dinner we had on the Chinese New Year’s Eve earlier when my eldest sister and her family are not present. Last night, we had the dinner at Harbour Seafood Restaurant in Cheras. The dishes served are generally good but their services are poor. The restaurant was crowded with lack of staff and so we didn’t get the required attention. Last night is the first time I tossed ‘yee sang’ for this year’s Chinese New Year festival that is going to end this Saturday. It is the usual practice here for Malaysian Chinese to toss ‘yee sang’ as high as possible while saying out their wishes. Typical wishes are like good health, great fortune, world peace, excel in study, and so on. This year, I said out an extra wish while tossing; get our prime minister to jail. And my family laughed but agreed. Haha…I guess most Malaysians agree and wish for this to be true soon.

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And yup…in less than two weeks, I will be flying back to Australia. No more trip to Genting for at least another year. Last time, I usually went up there at least four times a year.

(Copyrights reserved to images in this blog post. Please request permission if you intend to use them for any purpose.)

Less than a week to Chinese New Year and I’m frustrated by almost everything.

Posted in Interesting Encounters on January 23, 2017 by vincentloy

Chinese New Year is just around the corner and I’m supposed to be excited since the time for me to get angpow and to go to Vietnam for a vacation are near. However, I’m feeling frustrated rather than delightful surprisingly. I’m frustrated because this Chinese largest festival is coming too early this year. It gives me and my family not enough time to bask ourselves into this lunar new year’s mood. There’s not enough time for me to do CNY shopping, to buy CNY cookies and biscuits, to visit malls to check out variety of CNY decorations, etc.

Me and my family visited three malls yesterday. That’s a record. We planned to spend our Sunday on two malls earlier but my dad couldn’t find his favourite sport shoes to buy after visiting several stores. I didn’t realize my dad is that picky in choosing not only shoes, but also shirts to purchase. We ended up visiting Aeon Jusco Maluri, then Cheras Leisure Mall, and finally Sunway Velocity Mall. My dad bought the most stuff since he didn’t buy any new clothes yet (and I did so last month). I also didn’t come home empty handed again this time as I bought another new collared T-shirt for me to wear this coming Saturday most probably for the first day of CNY because it’s red in colour. It’s Chinese colour for prosperity.

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While millions of Americans are currently frustrated by their newly-elected President, me here is also being frustrated by our government over here in Malaysia. That one needs no further explanation. If not, I can be writing a novel here on that issue. Instead, I wish to highlight my recent frustration by the public sectors in Malaysia. We constantly experience water disruption especially in this highly-populated Klang Valley region. Since I’m back to Malaysia from November last year, my house has already experienced water disruption for over three times. This has happened more frequently in recent years and is certainly troublesome to all. Furthermore, the authority didn’t even bother to inform us earlier on the disruption. Sometimes, they do informed, but their schedule is totally off (not accurate). Very very poor management of water supply. SYABAS…what are you doing?

My house’s electric meter has broken down and has been replaced on July last year. And till now, we still did not receive our electricity bill that reflects the real amount of power we have used. I have made complaints through countless emails, plenty of calls, and even went ahead to visit their headquarter office at Dua Sentral Complex in KL. And yet, none of my effort is paid off. The best thing TNB can do is telling me that our new meter is not updated into their main system and hence their billing couldn’t read our home’s meter and can only print out our bill monthly based on assumed reading (average usage). They told me they will work on it and I have been waiting for few months, and still it has not been done. I’m sure no one in TNB is doing their work. Very lazy and incompetent. You guys are the one making us setting our mindset that our authority is super lazy and not doing anything. It is in fact true and has not been changed since the beginning of time. No one to be blamed but your own…this is a fact and is a notice to all government bodies and authorities of Malaysia. Also not to mention the very slow and unstable internet speed in this country. How can we be a developed nation if you guys work like that?

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Not only I’m angered by the authority, I’m also frustrated by private sector. Since getting a new debit card equipped with Mastercard function (it’s compulsory to change all ATM card to debit card now), I couldn’t make any online transaction at all with that card. I made more than 5 calls to the bank (AmBank) and they couldn’t solve my problem at all. It’s just a simple problem and a huge bank couldn’t even solve it. What a shame. Also not to mention how hard it is to get someone from the bank to just answer my calls every time. You see…so many things not resolved since I’m coming back home from Australia last year. I’m already here for 2 months already. There is no other way that I can avoid from being frustrated by all that issues. This post is here for me to write out all my anger and hopefully can get rid of it so that it won’t affect my mood this weekend for Chinese New Year and for my vacation to Vietnam.