Sunday, March 28, 2010


This group of Singaporean came to pay a visit to Kem today. And I was given the rare opportunity to play boss for a while. The top guns at Kem felt that their command of the Orang Puteh language was not to their satisfaction and since the briefing for the visitors was decided that it would be done in English, moi was called to the rescue. OK.

After being told that the visitors would arrive brunchtime, I arrived earlier at breakfast time. For the slideshow and note-making preparations, you understand. My hands alternated between icy cold and warm from the heart palpitations I got thinking of the possible folly that might occur during the presentation. Plenty of deep breaths did I take to calm my nerves. Hey? What's to be nervous about? Plenty!! I tend to stutter when my nerves are jangled. and there's this face palsy that's worrying me..

Anyway...we waited. And waited. And waited...first the news was that they had changed plans and instead of going water rafting as written in the travel itenerary, they were already at Kundasang enjoying the not-as-cold-as-before air AND that they were on their way down. 2 hours later they still hadn't come.

Then the sky opened and rain poured down. And the electricity bailed out on us. CURSES on SESB!! Big top gun decided that the waiting game and the outage should be reasons enough to call the thing off. She dialed a set of numbers and thrust the phone at me. Hah..couldn't she have explained the situation herself? So, I was left to explain - in English - the whole situation of it being raining cats and dogs and that the power outage meant powerpoint presentation was impossible..blabla... I was slightly puzzled why the person at the other end seemed to be fumbling with words and kept telling me to call the Pusatko even though I explained I was calling from there. I asked him where he was and he replied that he was at the airport. That puzzled me even more and asked when he was coming down to Kiulu. He hesitated and and later asked whether I could speak in Malay. SO, okay. I was a bit relieved that this Singaporean asked for Malay speech and asked him again what was the situation like, what time were they coming down.. and he said that there must be some mistake. I finally asked who was it on the line. When he replied, 'Wandi'. I took the mobile phone off my face and called the big gun and hooted with laughter. Wandi was the Kem driver. The big gun had dialled the wrong number and just gave the phone to me thinking that it was the Singaporean guy on the other end. And I thought the same. Mulau...
She later did a redial and got to the right contact. Too late to cancel..they were 5 minutes away from our doorstep.
Anyway..the visitors were clad in casual pants and t-shirts while we were all in our number 2 formals. I did the introduction, jittery and longing for a swig of a cold beer to calm the suddenly upset throat. All eyes were on me. I could feel my heartbeat banging on my eardrums. I knew I was nervous because I was twiddling with the cheap 2B pencil like I was the best twiddler in the universe. Soon however, as I saw nods and smiles coming from the audience, I slowly got hold of my nerves. Fuh..
I think I did okay. I got to shake hands with the Deputy Director of the Singapore Co-curriculum Sector and with the Deputy Director of the Singapore Outdoor Education Sector. And they get to know lil ole me. Those are rewards in a way, ya?
After a light snack, we gave them a tour of the Kem. They were quite impressed with how well-arranged and well-organized our Kem were. Hmm..maybe an exchange program will materialise one day?

Me n the pencil..greatest twiddler in the world.

Pictures courtesy of 9w6EDY
Yesterday, a hurdle overcome. Today yet another one. Mayhaps next week?

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Yang Berhormat..

This morning was the AGM of the school's PTA meet. I knew things were going to be a bit heated up when this particular parent started questioning the proceeding of the meeting even before the previous minutes were ascertained. This very concerned client of the school..'client' was how he described himself, you see.. had questions to almost all points brought up in the agenda. It wasn't so much as the merit (or demerit) of his suggestions but more of the way the suggestions were voiced and worded that made them almost impossible to swallow. He did not mince words, no sir-ree.. sarcasm all the way. All smiles and ego to boot.
I would've sensed his quiet arsenal-preparation (he sat on the first row, the seat next to the standing microphone) had it not been for his pseudo(in retrospect)friendly smile. We do like to think the best of people, eh?
Barrage after barrage of comments and insinuations later, oh was it later? It felt like he had been forever yakking on the mike, that the counselor had to cool things down by taking the mike and beg for the consideration of others, that there were more important things to discuss apart from the unspoken disgrace on our side for not putting in the page numbers on the sheets on the minutes. The head warden also put in a few words, in the school's support.
He put all in the hall in an uncomfortable mood. Very bad for those with heart condition i must say.
The meeting came to a much awaited end 3 and a half hours later. With the loud-mouth braggart leaving the hall as the new deputy YDP. Go figure.


It's been almost 1 month now since I started my Korean language class. 3 nights a week, mondays, wednesdays and fridays. I get by ok in the first one hour or so. However, after the half hour dinner break, my mind struggles a bit and by the 3rd hour, uh..i'll be repeatedly looking at my wristwatch. It's only conversational Korean and I don't expect to spout strings of Korean sentences by the end of this course but I am glad to be taking this course. I can read basic Korean characters already! But as for the meaning...

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Fitness Test D-Day

The test was yesterday. Did the push ups, the sit-ups (very badly to ever get washboard stomach with no sit-up discipline?)Did the run. Managed to run non-stop 1km before feeling the weight of my behind become too cumbersome to carry. After a half hour rest, we did the 200m swim which I thought was the only enjoyable test for me. I couldn't wear my normal one piece swimsuit on account of decency and the formality of the test..sigh. Had to resort to my full length tights and the Speedo top but with the one-piece swimsuit underneath. After doing all the previous battery of tests I could only manage a 6:48 mins for the 200m swim. My arms were already sore from the push-ups. Also, my movements felt restricted with the extra swimming clothings.
Woke up with some body soreness but otherwise ok. Glad the test is over. It wasn't that excellent, but it wasn't that bad either.

2.4km jog at Penampang Sports Complex. (picture courtesy of 9w6ATI)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Ujian Kecergasan

Last year I around this time I was getting myself ready to go through the Ujian Kecergasan which I thought was going to be held for the trainers in Kem. That didn't happen - the test I mean. A whole lot of other ad-hoc camps suddenly materialised and effectively wiped out most of the pre-planned camps. ahh..not wiped out..postponed. One of the postponed activity was the Fitness Test.
Of course, not being the bonafide fitness buff that I would like myself to be, I had discontinued the training last year.
Come this Friday, the majority of the trainers in West Coast will converge in Penampang Sports Complex. Uh..I think it'll be more of a test of how much laughter one can contain in watching other friends huffing and puffing their way to the finishing line.
I'll be okay in swimming. I'll just have to muster my stamina for the 2.4km run around the track. 6 complete laps.. With the scorching weather nowadays I am crossing my fingers and toes for a cloudy day!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Buayan Hike

Yeah.. went on a second trip to Buayan with Mona last Saturday. It was 10.30 something and Mona texted me saying that they weren't moving just yet from Donggongon and asked me to sabar dulu aa... I didn't mind. There was a power outtage but I napped easily on the couch downstairs.
Sometime around 11.20am Mona called me telling me that I would have to wait for the transport at the kedai runcit at Goli since it would be a bit out of the way for the 4wheel to ride up the short hill to my residence.. Hmm... I packed could the 4wheel be? 10 minutes later I found out. The Nissan 4wheel was quite overflowing with passengers. When the 4wheeler stopped, the back passenger door on the left opened and ejected 3 children who scampered up into the packed rear open cabin. As I sat inside, I saw that there were already 3 ladies and a little boy within. Since there was still room, it was decided that another little passenger could benefit the space within the passenger seating. So, little Kevin was called in. Let's see, there was the driver, Mona sat in front with a little girl on her lap. There was me, little Kevin, the other two ladies, and a mother with her little boy. 8 front passengers, plus the horde of standing passengers at the back - 6 or 7 of them. Wow.
Seating settled, the vehicle roared on. Pass Kg. Sugud, on to Timpangoh Laut, pass the small rocky stream, up and up the bumpy orange colored earthen road (road?), going down similar trails until we reached Kuala Terian. I thought to myself, if there were any reasons to buy an offroad vehicle, traversing these kinds of road conditions would be IT. Bumped my head a few times, and having a super slim neighbour who was all muscle and sharp bones was an experience. I could feel her shoulder poking under my ribs.. was she that thin?
Anyway..the buck stopped there. That road trip took about an hour or so. On to hiking.
We had to cross this river. It wasn't as deep as I thought it would be. At shallowest point the water only reached my thigh so it was a revelation when Mona said on a normal non-dry season, the water can reach as high chest level. In which case, Mona would take another route- albeit longer - to pass through this river since crossing this river at that depth would be quite dangerous for her.
Which reminds me to wear a different outdoor sandals next time I need to cross rocky rivers. The Eiger sandals I wore didn't grip well. There was one point where I lost my balance and toppled forward! I quickly recovered and took out my camera and mobile phone (not that there was any phone line there) from the front pocket of the backpack. They were ok. One lesson for me. Much as I was confident that I was not going to slip on a shallow water, I should've put them in a waterproof bag. One of the Year 6 girls, Jeslinda, who was already nearing the bank on the opposite side, waded back and shyly offered to carry my backpack. Wah! How thoughtful! I handed it to her, along with the plastic bag containing my phone and camera. I didn't want to risk another embarrasing dip in the water. ;)

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Sabah Paintball League (1st leg)

So...this is paintball marshalling...
I spent the whole Saturday and Sunday last week baking under the sun for the 2010 Sabah Paintball League (1st leg). There were 4 of us newbie marshalls..not so fresh from marshall clinic held last year in Kem. I'm thankful for the generous and patient coachings given by Head Ref Sheila a.k.a Angel Bear, Andrew a.k.a Ahboon, Austen, Zach and Gracie.
By the end of the second day, I brought home with me some paintball souvenirs in the forms of bumps and bruises. No complaints from me in that pain(t), no gain...
I didn't take least ones as good these were. I borrowed these pics from photographer Timothy Boyou. He risked his camera, not to mention himself for these amazing shots..

Nice...the participants together with the marshalls..

The second leg of the SPL will be in June in Keningau. Anyone interested?

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Things have been happening. Some expected, some unexpected. One unexpected event has rendered my physically and emotionally weak. I feel like an old battered car in need of jumpstart each morning. Nay, I am also incapable of divulging this event. So it's almost pointless sharing it in the first place, isn't it?