Monday, August 27, 2012

Open Season?

Classes have resumed.  Last two semesters have felt like open season & I was the deer.  Mechanics & Heat  in the short semester, then Multivariate Calculus in the following semester were really a blow to my CGPA.

I've probably rambled a lot about this so I'm not going to say anything more.  Let's just hope that hunting season is over & this little deer is not going to face anymore trouble.

This semester I'm only taking 3 subjects; Thermodynamics, Electricity & Light, & retaking Multivariate Calculus.  Multivariate Calculus has a new lecturer so hopefully she's good.  Going to work hard at all my papers now.  Have to.  Need to bring up my CGPA so I can apply.

Talking about applications, I'm now looking at Canada rather than the States due -- primarily -- to safety issues...  There has been literally a shooting every week.  It's frightening.  Going to apply to McMaster, University of Calgary, & Queen's.  Not too sure about getting accepted into Queen's but I'm still going to try.  Who knows, right?

So, during the term break, 4 of my friends flew off Stateside.  Coming back after one of the trips to the airport, I got rear-ended pretty badly.  Everyone was OK but the car was quite bad.  Good news, it wasn't my fault as I was already stopped at the red light & it's already done. Damn ambulance chasers said it would take 2 months.  2 months my ass.  Good thing my family & I don't trust them.

So, it looks like my racing season is kicking into high gear soon.  Events on September 16th, 22nd, 30th, and November 4th.  I'll have to work hard this coming months to juggle training & school.  Good thing my schedule this semester looks pretty relaxed so I have time to study and train. Insyaallah it'll stay that way.  My Wednesdays could be busy, though as I'll have Committee meetings.

So, wish me luck, I guess.

Random thought; Ben l'Oncle Soul is a french singer with a very nice voice & very nice soul songs. :D

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Orang Asli Roadtrip

So today, Aneez, Fang, Vic, Naufal & I went on a daytrip we had planned for quite a while now.  Things only came together so it was a bit rushy.  Pulled off the logistics, though! :D The original plan was to rent a van & go to Bidor, Perak.  After a few discussions, plans changed and we opted to visit the Orang Asli village in Trolak, instead.  The whole objective of the trip was to deliver the NoKero lights we had raised funds for during our events in school.

Left rather early, and made it to the Sungkai exit on time.  Unfortunately, we got a little lost thanks to a mislabel on Google Maps.  Luckily, it wasn't difficult to get back on track.  Once we were deep-er into the plantation, we turned off the a/c & rolled down the CR-V's windows.  It was fun as we weren't going that fast.  The final stretch going up was fun to drive.  Hehe!  The village itself was very quaint, and despite being rather close to the Felda Residences, still had not been modernized too much.

We had a small meeting with the Tok Batin, explaining to him as well as many other eager and curious villagers what is the NoKero lamp & how to use it.  The people of the village are known as the Semai and are the native inhabitants of Perak.  Vic slept a good portion of the journey. Hehe!  The village itself is roughly 210m above sea level.  The village gets it's running water from the nearby river via a series of pipes.  At the moment, there is no electricity.  At least, not for most of the village.  I don't think they're in abject poverty... Um... The somewhat ambiguous definitions given are clashing with how I define abject poverty... So, I would say no. But the vague definitions imply yes... Hmm.

After the briefing, our guides talked to the Tok Batin, presumably regarding the NoKero lamps as I could not catch what they were saying.  It wasn't Bahasa as I know it.  It was almost like another language, which was fascinating.

Vic & I started to photograph the children and show them the pictures.  I also photographed some of the elders.  Apparently, the elders enjoy being photographed, & viewing their pictures as much as the children do.  Vic & Fang were then invited to enjoy a meal prepared by villagers.  Apparently it was daging kerbau of some sort & got the thumbs up from both of them.  While the two of them were chowing down with the village elders, Aneez, Naufal, & I were busy exploring the river.  It was fun dipping our feet in the cold river, especially after our feet were slightly sore from walking and jumping along the rough, hot boulders that line the river.

Vic, Naufal, Fang, & I ventured quite far upstream whilst Aneez opted to stay downstream under the shade of the tree with her feet in the water.  The young village children were extremely lithe, agile, and athletic.  Our venture upstream yielded us a view of the kids playing in their naturally-formed water slide.  Wanted to give it a shot but I didn't want to face the hassle of having to change clothes later on.  After resting a bit, we headed back down, took a big group photo with the children, and then with the elders.

The drive back was quieter as everyone was tired.  It poured heavily as we approached the exit onto Guthrie Corridor Expressway.  The wet road didn't bother me, I was worried I would miss the exit.  Thankfully, I didn't.

There's a lot more I want to tell but I think the pictures on my Facebook tell the story much better. :)

That's all for now. Au revoir.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Olympic Fever!

So as most of the world is well aware, ongoing right now is one of the greatest sporting events in the world; The Olympics.  People all over the world have been glued to their TVs watching their favorite athlete run that bit faster, smash that bit harder, push that bit more, cheering them on, feeling their pain, their joy, feeling pride in their athletes regardless of a win or not.

Malaysia may be a soccer-mad nation -- yes, soccer -- but when it comes to the Olympics; there is one sport that I can safely say ALL Malaysians are eyeing; badminton.  Since the glory days of the Sidek brothers, Malaysia has been a powerhouse in badminton.  The Men's Singles final was a replay of the 2008 Beijing Olympics.  Sad to say, even right down to who won the match. :(

Nevertheless, our Dato' Lee Chong Wei performed superbly, gave it his all, never backed down, but most of all, held his composure till the very end.  Chong Wei, you are one awesome player.  It is sad you did not win gold, but not winning gold is not losing.  The way you played is the farthest thing from losing.  The entire match more akin to a 100m dash than a boxing match.  It wasn't about defeating your opponent, it was who would reach 21 points first.  Congrats Chong Wei, Malaysia is completely & thoroughly proud of you.

Malaysia's next hope is Azizulhasni Awang.  Our very own Pocket Rocketman.  Competing in the Men's Individual Sprint as well as Men's Individual Keirin, I would say he has a good chance of bringing home another medal!  Yeeha!  So do tune in & watch him!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Keeping Fit

Ramadan is a tricky time to stay fit. It's very much possible, just for me, it requires more discipline compared to other months.  Usually after iftar, I'm either too full/worn out to do sports and/or I am going to tarawih with my family.

My parents seem fine with me doing exercises late-er due to Ramadan but when something isn't in your routine, it feels odd. Maybe I still should train at night, like when I played rugby; we trained at night after tarawih.  I'll do that.
So tomorrow night, night run. I'll try to hit 6km & see how I fare. Minimum distance I need to run is 4km. I'm sure my fitness is quite bad. I haven't really done much training since Port Dickson International Triathlon, which was about three weeks back or so... O-O

September is going to be a busy busy month.  I have the Adidas King of the Road 10km road run, Taiping International Marathon (I'll most likely be doing the 21km half-marathon), Desaru International Triathlon (still deciding between the Sprint or Long Distance), AND the Salomon X-Trail 10km trail run. Whew.

I'll probably go for the half-marathon for Taiping, & the sprint for Desaru, just so that I can manage.  I'll barely have any recovery.  It'll be every weekend, and I have classes too. Hmm.

We'll see.

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