Friday, September 26, 2008

Macau-Hong Kong Trip

Just got back last Friday from a short trip to Macau cum Hong Kong. To make a long story short, it was sorta of a last minute free&easy 4 days 3 nights trip to Macau...

St. Paul's cathedral @ MacauFlight to Macau was at 9am but I only took the bus down to KL on Monday night after work and reached KL at the crack of dawn. We flew Air Asia and the journey took us about 4 hours or so. The itinerary included a free half-day tour on the 2nd day but since it was only 2pm, we decided to explore Macau ourselves. And good thing we did because to be honest we actually covered the few main spots in Macau in the first day and people were starting to complain of being bored in Macau. LOL, well there's nothing much you can do in Macau unless of course you are into trying your luck at the cards which will definitely have you occupied for as long as your pockets aren't empty. Plus the number of casinos around could really make your mind go bonkers!

Anyway, we stopped by Macau Tower where you can actually perform bungee jumps IF you had the nerve. I didn't have the guts so I only tried out the skywalk - that's walking at the outer edge of the tower @ 61st floor. The view was not too bad but could have been better if there were no haze enveloping the place. Next, we moved on to the famous St. Paul's cathedral or what was left of it after a big fire in 1835. It's a must-stop to prove that you'd been to Macau! :P

Venetian @ MacaoIt was evening by the time we were ready to leave St. Paul's. After a quick rest and freshening up at the hotel, we took the free shuttle to the famous The Venetian Macao. Indeed it was a HUGE Venice-themed place (canals and gondolas included) that housed suites, convention space, retails, an indoor arena for entertainment/sports event as well as the world's largest casino under it's roof. Very nice place I must say with the lightings and cloud-painted ceilings that made me feel as though it was still day time even though the watch said 11pm!

We decided to skip the Macau tour and to go over to Hong Kong instead, which was an hour ferry's ride away. Took the opportunity to grab 40 winks since relatively nothing much to view except the sea :P

After lunch at Mongkok, it was time to take the tram up to the famous Victoria Peak where Madame Tussauds' wax museum was located. Mmmm very good view of Hong Kong from up here which of course just meant a bunch of super tall skyscrapers all over ;) Madame Tussauds was not as big as I'd expected and up close, not all the wax figures looked exactly like the celebrities/famous ppl they were sculpted after. Managed to have a drink at a cafe overlooking Hong Kong too..not bad, eh? ^_^

Victoria Habour @ Hong KongBy 6pm, we had taken the tram down and a taxi to Victoria Habour, a common spot in TVB dramas :P And by 7pm, we had travelled over to Avenue of Stars @ Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon. The Avenue of Stars was modelled after the Hollywood Walk of Fame and located along waterfront with a panoramic view across Victoria Habour. Though most of the stars I saw on the pavements were of actors/actresses/personalities that I had never heard of :P. We "loitered" until 8pm to view the Symphony of Lights display, an ochestration of music, decoration of lights from 44 participating buildings and laser lights display. Nothing very spectacular but I guess it was again a must-see for all first-timers in Hong Kong...

Night life in Hong Kong was next and where to but the famous Lan Kwai Fong, where rows of pubs lined the street - some of them had dress codes even! Nothing much really and we decided to call it a night after a quick dinner there.

Disneyland @ Hong KongThe entire day was dedicated to a trip to Disneyland. It rained in the morning but stopped right before Disneyland opened its doors at 10am. Then it was super hot all the way thru..I even got sunburned! The place wasn't extremely big and 1 day should be sufficient unless during the weekends or holiday season where it should get pretty crowded and queuing time drastically multiplied. After the fireworks, we caught the ferry back to Macau. What an exhausting day...

Time to say bye bye Macau.. hello again, Malaysia :)

Overall, the trip wasn't too bad but perhaps was a tad too short as I ran out of time to include more places of visits into the itinerary. Also, no time to walk the streets or to try the local delicacies and definitely no time for shopping though on another note, I'd better think twice about shopping with the price of things over in Hong Kong. Food that I managed to try was ok except for that lunch on the first day in Macau (prison food is what I called them). Weather was almost similar to Penang (30-ish degrees during the day and 27-ish at night) which meant I almost melted walking around and there was a LOT of walking involved as usual - my entire year worth of walking, that's what I always said. Would I go there again? I might after I'd been to everywhere else..or if I get another free trip :P

P/S: Will upload more pix in Facebook/Multiply soon...wait for it ya! Checkout out the pix in my Facebook! :)

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Happy Mid-Autumn Festival!

Mid-Autumn FestivalIt's Mid-Autumn Festival today...

let's enjoy mooncakes with a cuppa hot tea, watch the lil' kids walking around the neighbourhood carrying lanterns (and maybe recall back the good ol' days when you were the one walking the neighbourhood :D), all while enjoying the beautiful moon in its full glory..

On mooncakes, there're all sorts of flavors out there nowadays. No more just the traditional lotus paste with yolk; now there's flavors like tiramisu, cappucino oreo, and dragonfruit even! LOL yup, my home happens to have the above flavors [gifts from ppl] but yet to try them so no reviews. But I am already doubting the dragonfruit mooncake..the combination sounds so weird, don't you think so? :S

Cappucino oreo mooncake Mooncake Collage
(Click to enlarge)

Haagen-dazs also came out with ice-cream mooncakes for the occassion. There are 4 flavors; cookies & cream, macadamia nut, strawberry, and chocolate. They even have "egg yolks" inside made of mango sorbet. Innovative indeed and pricey too~~

Haagen-daz ice-cream mooncakes Mooncake scrappage
(Click to enlarge)

Made a scrap page for this day as well :) Anyway, here's wishing everybody out there a Happy Mooncake Festival!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Who I Am (according to Myers-Briggs)

Be forewarned this is gonna be a really long post with lots and LOTs of words, so stop reading while you still can :)

Personality tests; there are many out there and Myers-Briggs is just one of them. Although I do not believe each and everyone of us can be categorized into only a few groups - contrary, I believe there must be those who are "spill-overs"; a mixture of 2 or more categories - but well, no harm in trying ;)

I had since fwded the same test to my friends and one had blogged about it while another had discussed her results with me I thought I should share mine too. There're 2 detailed descriptions for each result but they are really talking about the same thing.

Introverted iNtuitive Thinking Judging (INTJ)

To outsiders, INTJs may appear to project an aura of "definiteness", of self-confidence. This self-confidence, sometimes mistaken for simple arrogance by the less decisive, is actually of a very specific rather than a general nature; its source lies in the specialized knowledge systems that most INTJs start building at an early age. When it comes to their own areas of expertise -- and INTJs can have several -- they will be able to tell you almost immediately whether or not they can help you, and if so, how. INTJs know what they know, and perhaps still more importantly, they know what they don't know.

Have very high standardsINTJs are perfectionists, with a seemingly endless capacity for improving upon anything that takes their interest. What prevents them from becoming chronically bogged down in this pursuit of perfection is the pragmatism so characteristic of the type: INTJs apply (often ruthlessly) the criterion "Does it work?" to everything from their own research efforts to the prevailing social norms. This in turn produces an unusual independence of mind, freeing the INTJ from the constraints of authority, convention, or sentiment for its own sake.

INTJs are known as the "Systems Builders" of the types, perhaps in part because they possess the unusual trait combination of imagination and reliability. Whatever system an INTJ happens to be working on is for them the equivalent of a moral cause to an INFJ; both perfectionism and disregard for authority may come into Independent & Originalplay, as INTJs can be unsparing of both themselves and the others on the project. Anyone considered to be "slacking," including superiors, will lose their respect -- and will generally be made aware of this; INTJs have also been known to take it upon themselves to implement critical decisions without consulting their supervisors or co-workers. On the other hand, they do tend to be scrupulous and even-handed about recognizing the individual contributions that have gone into a project, and have a gift for seizing opportunities which others might not even notice.

In the broadest terms, what INTJs "do" tends to be what they "know". Typical INTJ career choices are in the sciences and engineering, but they can be found wherever a combination of intellect and incisiveness are required (e.g., law, some areas of academia). INTJs can rise to management positions when they are willing to invest time in marketing their abilities as well as enhancing them, and (whether for the sake of ambition or the desire for privacy) many also find it useful to learn to simulate some degree of surface conformism in order to mask their inherent unconventionality.

Personal relationships, particularly romantic ones, can be the INTJ's Achilles heel. While they are capable of caring deeply for others (usually a select few), and are willing to spend a great deal of time and effort on a relationship, the knowledge and self-confidence that make them so successful in other areas can suddenly abandon or mislead them in interpersonal situations.

This happens in part because many INTJs do not readily grasp the social rituals; for instance, they tend to have little patience and less understanding of such things as small talk and flirtation (which most types consider half the fun of a relationship). To complicate matters, INTJs are usually extremely private people, and can often be naturally impassive as well, which makes them easy to misread and misunderstand. Perhaps the most fundamental problem, however, is that INTJs really want people to make sense. :-) This sometimes results in a peculiar naivete', paralleling that of many Fs -- only instead of expecting inexhaustible affection and empathy from a romantic relationship, the INTJ will expect inexhaustible reasonability and directness.

Probably the strongest INTJ assets in the interpersonal area are their intuitive abilities and their willingness to "work at" a relationship. Although as Ts they do not always have the kind of natural empathy that many Fs do, the Intuitive function can often act as a good substitute by synthesizing the probable meanings behind such things as tone of voice, turn of phrase, and facial expression. This ability can then be honed and directed by consistent, repeated efforts to understand and support those they care about, and those relationships which ultimately do become established with an INTJ tend to be characterized by their robustness, stability, and good communications.

Here's the 2nd description, which relates more to career perspective:

Rational Potrait of the Mastermind

Exceptional ability to turn theories into solid plansAll Rationals are good at planning operations, but Masterminds are head and shoulders above all the rest in contingency planning. Complex operations involve many steps or stages, one following another in a necessary progression, and Masterminds are naturally able to grasp how each one leads to the next, and to prepare alternatives for difficulties that are likely to arise any step of the way. Trying to anticipate every contingency, Masterminds never set off on their current project without a Plan A firmly in mind, but they are always prepared to switch to Plan B or C or D if need be.

Masterminds are rare, comprising no more than, say, one percent of the population, and they are rarely encountered outside their office, factory, school, or laboratory. Although they are highly capable leaders, Natural leadersMasterminds are not at all eager to take command, preferring to stay in the background until others demonstrate their inability to lead. Once they take charge, however, they are thoroughgoing pragmatists. Masterminds are certain that efficiency is indispensable in a well-run organization, and if they encounter inefficiency-any waste of human and material resources-they are quick to realign operations and reassign personnel. Masterminds do not feel bound by established rules and procedures, and traditional authority does not impress them, nor do slogans or catchwords. Only ideas that make sense to them are adopted; those that don't, aren't, no matter who thought of them. Remember, their aim is always maximum efficiency.

In their careers, Masterminds usually rise to positions of responsibility, for they work long and hard and are dedicated in their pursuit of goals, sparing neither their own time and effort nor that of their colleagues and employees. Problem-solving is highly stimulating to Masterminds, who love responding to tangled systems that require careful sorting out. Ordinarily, they verbalize the positive and avoid comments of a negative nature; they are more interested in moving an organization forward than dwelling on mistakes of the past.

DeterminedMasterminds tend to be much more definite and self-confident than other Rationals, having usually developed a very strong will. Decisions come easily to them; in fact, they can hardly rest until they have things settled and decided. But before they decide anything, they must do the research. Masterminds are highly theoretical, but they insist on looking at all available data before they embrace an idea, and they are suspicious of any statement that is based on shoddy research, or that is not checked against reality.

So what do you think?. Sounds just like ME? or 50-50? or totally not me? Personally I don't think its 100% me though :P

What tickles me most is the short description about rational women when it comes to romance and relationship:

Rational women tend to be late bloomers on the dating scene. They are sometimes unaware of or don’t wish to follow cultural norms which dictate what is considered feminine. As they get older, men often appreciate their logic and general lack of emotional outbursts, along with the fact that Rational women tend to clearly state what they think and want.

[The e.g. provided for an INTJ]
Pat is a Rational Mastermind (INTJ). In high school, she watched others flirt and felt a combination of envy and disgust. In college, Pat found some dates in her upper level classes and professional organizations. Now she has a steady boyfriend. They enjoy long technical and philosophical talks and cultural experiences. They have talked of marriage, but, at this point, they’re too involved in their careers.

P/S: Oh, and I found out that Bee and my personalities are total enigma, while Shuey and I are supposed to complement each other. Regardless, we clicked then, we're clicking now, and I'm sure we will remain clicked for a long time to come. Don't you think so, gals? ;)

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Avril ROCKS Kuala Lumpur

I still remembered the first Avril Lavigne's concert I attended - in Singapore (coz it was cancelled in Malaysia at the last minute!) - back in 2005 where I had a superb time. And when I heard she was schedulling a concert in Kuala Lumpur this time around, I did not think twice about getting the tix. Mine was the most expensive even which from the floor layout would have me nearest to the stage :D ...Only thing that worried me was all the tix were free standings/sittings (except those lucky VIPs with numbered seats right in front of the stage of coz)

Tickets!!Just 1 week before the much-awaited day, there was a big hoo-hah that the concert was cancelled. Even prestigious news website carried the headline "Avril too sexy for Malaysia". Sexy?! What?! Since when is Avril's dressing sexy?? As far as I know she was always the rock chick. Lucky thing the concert still got the green light in the end - I do not want to delve into what might be the reason for the turnaround but haha my fellow friends whom I've discussed this with should know how to read between the lines ;)

The day/nite itself was very eventful. I reached the venue at 4pm and there were already a number of people sitting outside the entrance so I joined the crowd. Alas, the entrance was facing west which meant the setting sun was shining directly at it... which also meant that I was slowly being melted away as I waited. By 6pm the crowd had built up, spilling over the stairs into the parking lot. We were allowed in at 7pm and as expected, there was some jostling and pushing from behind to squeeze into the small gate. Everyone that went through just started sprinting immediately towards the field in order to grab the best positions. Lucky#1, I managed to get to the "front-est" possible *phew. In front of me were just the VIP seats so no one was going to BLOCK me! *YAY

(Click pix to enlarge)

At least now I was spared from the scorching sun but wait a minute, I tot I sawTaken after the concert ended dark clouds gathered. Darn, I braced myself for the rain to come. Lucky#2, the organizers distributed disposable rain coats and Lucky#3, the rain stopped before the concert kicked off. A heavy downpour might just drowned out Avril's voice..horror of horrors. I still had my raincoat on as I feared it might rained again but midway into the concert, I had to ripped it was too stuffy and I was sweating like mad. LOL in the end, I was drenched with/without the rain.

The show officially began at 9pm. Avril was awesome, belting out 17 songs in total which included her most famous hits from all her 3 albums. Avril rocked and serenaded the crowd with songs like Complicated, Hot, Girlfriend, Happy Ending, When You're Gone, Innocence, Best Damn Thing, and ended with Sk8er Boi as the encore. Before I knew it, it was 10.30pm and it was time to bid her goodbye.

When You're Gone
(Click pix to enlarge)

Awesome night, awesome performance. Worth the sun, worth the rain. Can't wait for her to drop by our shores again :)

Check out some of the clips that I managed to record down albeit blurry but better than nothing, ya? :P (If the videos are not loading, click on the links to go directly to the site where they are located)