Revisiting my hometown’s treasures

It has been more than a decade since my last visit to these local attractions. As a local boy there, there is no reason walking into temples and caves once every week like a shopping mall unless I have a reason to. This holiday, I had one; showing my girlfriend around especially Sam Poh Tong and Kek Lok Tong caves. My home town is surrounded by limestone mountains and these historic hot spots is a must, aside from gorging good food (another top ‘attraction’) from the local eateries.

The trip  to Ipoh was a short one so I decided not to carry my heavy DSLR along. The shots I took was from the Samsung Galaxy S2’s camera. It does take pretty shots IMHO.

Stalactites with ambient lightsA temple within the mountainGreenery outside the caveSpiral incense outside a temple

Preparing for wedding photography

I’m going to take a short break in the mid December for two weeks. It’s the time of the season to relax, visit family and get together with mate. While I’m at it, I’ve been invited to attend two weddings of my school/college chums. And that’s not all; I was requested to be their photographer of the day (not the official one, thank goodness).

Since this is my first time, I hope I live up to their expectations. Okay okay, I lied. It’s not my first time; I did a very short stint for a mate of mine and it was not professional at all. It was s**t. Zero substance. Of course that was two years ago; I should have learned my lessons, identified my lackings and improved a little by now. We’ll see how it turns out then. ; )

Words of wisdom from a parent

Any advice from a parent is always worthwhile to listen to. I heed them all the time.

Over the weekend, my mum called. Usually, there is at least a hint of advice embedded in her usual 15 minutes plus conversations. This time it was short and pretty much random.

Mom: “Son, I just want to let you know this. One, do not talk on a mobile phone when you are driving. Two, do not talk on a mobile phone when you are crossing roads”
Me: “Uh, ok.”
Mom: “Pass this message to your sister as well. That’s it, bye”.

Thanks mom.

Redneck Rampage

 

Pistol
(Guy on left: Sigh, your aiming sucks!)

  

I am a handgun enthusiast and has been collecting toy guns (unfortunately) or replicas since then. And for the first time I get to experience to pull the trigger of real ones. Yep, I’m a redneck for the day in Thailand.

It’s one of those popular shooting ranges for tourist so it’s pretty expensive to fire a gun. I took up 3 different types of guns to try:

  • A 9mm Glock
  • A modified M-16 with .22 rounds
  • A 12 gauge Remington shotugn with shot shells

What I’ve missed: Colt Anaconda, M1 Garand and bolt action rifles (forgot which model).

 

9mm Glock

Probably one of the easiest gun to try out. Little recoil and better grip. I missed a couple of shots when I was warming up and missed another for trying to hit the target’s head. Guess it ain’t that easy to get a headshot like in the movies. 300 baht for 6 rounds. Jesus.

PistolPistol

M16

If I knew they are not going to use a 5.56mm, I wouldn’t have tried this baby. Modified to fit in .22, these ammo are actually meant for pocket pistols, for example a Deringger which is suitable for concealed carry (just like those James Bond girls). With the bullet size smaller than a peanut, there’s almost no recoil when I fired and shot like a peashooter. No fun for me :( Another 300 baht gone to waste.

RifleRifleRifle

Remington Shotgun

This one is slightly dearer; 400 baht for 6 shells. Since this is a pump-action, I had to pull the handgrip back and forth to load and eject the shell. It was pretty easy and effortless. How was I wrong about the movies: I always see actors struggling to pump a round into it. Oh it sounds so different too or rather all of these guns sound so identical. After looking at the target sheet, I don’t think I want to mess a guy with a shotgun. Ugh! Recoil was fast and hard. When I went back I found out there’s a bruise on my shoulder blade. The next couple of days, the pain punched in. Guess my arm posture wasn’t in the right position. Curses!

ShotgunShotgunRifleShoulder

So, the conclusion: Was it fun? Oh yes. Am I going back there to try again? Hell yeah. But next time I’m going somewhere else cheaper. This was a ripoff.

Skool of ’98

 

Skool of '98
(Above, from left: The Bullied, The Bully and The Legend)

One of the reasons to get back home is to see my old mates from yesteryears and boy, it was worth it. On the first day of the Chinese New Year, about half of my class gathered for the first time since I left for Down Under. Honestly, I didnt have the opportunity to see many of these chaps for a decade. 10 years! How time flies. Can’t blame the years that many of my friends changed, personality wise and *ahem* physically. Of course, the latter shouldn’t be indulged too much.

It was a short meet-up that night, catching up each other’s past and present as I’m heading off to Thailand that very night for a week. Their leave for the New Year weren’t promising enough with some of them could only afford a couple of days off, ergo I’ll miss them when I return from Thailand. With every minute counts, their joy and laughter filling in one of my mate’s house were truly cherished.

Okay. Enough sentimental moments.

The best part of all is to patch up the missing gaps of my lives with my old gang (the two homeys above). Nothing changed much since we left school: they looked the same, their conversations filled with profanity, sarcasm & toilet jokes and every issue was solved with the break of an arm (or more). Gawd, I missed those violent days. Uncivilised? I call that daily routine of the Bullied, the Bully and the Legend of F#@&.

Let’s hope we can do this again next year.

Skool of '98Skool of '98Skool of '98Skool of '98 

P.S. Guys. If you want the pics, shoot me an email and I’ll send ya a better copy. You know how to get hold of me.

P.S #2: The term “The Legend of F#@&” was coined by the guy who beared that name himself. I ain’t that nice to invent a lame name for him!

Off I go!

Airport

Yippie-ka-yay! Tonight is the time to go back to Boleh-land (that’s what they seem to call Malaysia nowadays I think). The long awaited break is a two-week trip; short one but it’s better than nothing.

Originally I was planning to hop onto one of the Skybus service to the aiport, but good old Oliver offered to pick me and my apartment mates for dinner and to the airport as well. Thanks a bundle dude. And oh, I better pray my seat is far far away from crying babies and annoying kids.

Let’s see what I’m gonna do:

  • Food Fest!: Oh yes, the mother of all. We all live to eat right?
  • Family: Patch up with my family and relatives. Think I’m going to get naggings aplenty from them. I can already hear their guns loaded with little trigger happy friends into the chamber. O_o
  • Lost brothers: Meeting up old skool/college chums, hopefully they’ll be around when I’m around. I didn’t get to meet them for a long period, and some of them as far as a decade (close though).
  • Shopping: Typical old me. Excuse = My work/casual clothes are like, 3 years old? Not to forget I have a list of items to buy for my friends over here. Favours.
  • Bangkok trip: Dad booked us a short trip to Bangkok. Hopefully there’ll be plenty of transvestites hot chicks there to perv. It was so long since we had a family trip.

The downside is, I’m expecting to gain a little weight there and a bigger six-pack-on-one. I also will be the prime target for my school chaps to grill and interrogate. Hell, a price I’m willing to pay.

For those in Boleh-land, I’ll see you soon enough. For those in Down Under, I’ll see you again in March! Yoosha!