Sunday, May 30, 2010

TimeOut KL

Few of the challenges in writing and maintaining a blog are choosing the right blogging materials, selecting/editing the photos to complement it, experimenting with various writing styles and how to keep it relevant. My blog is categorised as Personal Blog in Sarawak Bloggers as I do not maintain a specific subject as the subject is ALL ABOUT MIE. What I do. What I eat. Where I go ...

Anyway, I do not recommend that if any of you are thinking about writing seriously. Write about yourself only if you are a DIVA! Having said that I AM a Diva on Facebook's Sorority Girls hehehe

If I am living in ancient Greece, I might say, Athena and Aphrodite are smiling happily to me these few weeks. Filling my passion and "love" for knowledge, art and musicals till it almost burst. Another long entry from me ...

West Side Story The Musical @ Istana Budaya
19 May 2010

Norzah commented in his blog that "the glamour of the play is just that it's a rare foreign dish." He is right in that aspect. I had planned to watch this musical since last year with Jethro and Emel though I've never watched the movie or take some time to read the sypnosis of the play. I know it's a famous production but I didn't know what it was famous for or which famous songs come from this musical. So being Mie, as long as it is famous and recommended by Jethro ... I ON jak.

To be honest, at first I thought it was a Western or "country" inspired musical (hahaha).

However when the tickets were offered for sale earlier this year, I couldn't believe my eyes looking at the ticket price for the good seats. GULP ... suddenly I hesitated. Plus earlier I had just purchased the ticket for SuJu concert that cost me RM 500. Takkan nak spent RM 1K just for tickets right???? So, finally the three of us had to forget about West Side Story due to financial constraint.

But deep down I couldn't stop hoping and wishing for a miracle, as I would like to add to my list of shows that I have watched in Istana Budaya like Mamma Mia, PGL , and Cuci The Musical. So when Norzah blogged about it last week, I couldn't help but feeling a bit envious (luckily haven't turned green yet). I also missed Datin's comment on his blog as I was busy "fixing a broken heart" .... hehehe. Got myself busy organising Mem Besar press conference.

It was only after I got an sms from Isa (Johor Director) that directors were made compulsory to watch the musical that started me to research about the play and the same time feeling like doing "bungee jumping" from Level 56 KOMTAR. Ooooo ... an American version of Romeo and Juliet ... interesting!

Anyway, there was a very funny incident that took place before the show. I was so focus in looking for the girl named Nabila for my ticket that I overlooked Datin Zaitun who was standing next to me. Aiya.... so teruk one. Macam ada blind spot pulak hahahaha.

I was given a very good seat by Datin as shown above. So I was a bit disappointed that many officers couldn't make it or left early after the intermission. Many people would love to see this show but just don't have the chance or couldn't afford the ticket. But I also have to admit that I didn't enjoy the show entirely despite the hunky dancers. Datin Tiara describe it best in her blog entry... my feelings too exactly! I could understand the Sharks (Puerto Rican immigrants) Spanglish dialogues (and enjoyed it) but not the Jets - with heavy Irish-British accent. Quite a put off ...

And Tony in his underpant (seluar apek pulak tu) .... not as HOT as anticipated, just MILD hahaha

Anyway, overall ... the show worth all my four hours drive from Penang. The singing, the dancing and the locally assembled musicians were superb! I have to thank Datin Zaitun again from the bottom of my heart for making it possible. I owe you a lot Datin! Muah ... muah!

Seminar On Innovation And Creativity in Tourism
20 May 2010 (Morning)

Actually I am very sensitive to the word "Transformation" which was our Property Development Lab mantra. Hari-hari Dato' Seri Idris and team reminded us to be a "transformer". Plus 2010 so far has been so good to me in terms of personal development. After Datuk Seri Idris Jala, it feels great to be able to listen to the view of Tan Sri Francis Yeoh of the YTL Group and Azran Osman Rani, CEO of AirAsia X, other great business minds in the country.

I posted a question to both panelists. Do we need a tourism masterplan? My point was tourist attractions are scattered and lack of characteristic in our country. New blood penetrating the working class are Gen-Ys and they (we too also) would love to be able to travel to as many interesting places as possible at an affordable price. And they don't mind spending if it is worth it. Azran disagree to the idea (of course as it may means railways over air) and Tan Sri said ... please don't think that tourism is doing so bad in Malaysia.

Actually, I was not thinking it that way. Indonesia, Thailand and Singapore benefit a lot from Malaysian tourists. Talked about Bandung, Bali, Haadyai or Chiengmai. Many people have been there at least once or twice. If you ask me, in Malaysia, there will be only 1 city (with exception to KL, Kuching and Penang) that I would return to again every year .... Kota Kinabalu. And from KK town centre you can start making plans to go to Kundasang, Kinabalu Park, the Islands (Manukan, Mamutik, Sapi) or hit the local nightspots. Labuan would also benefit a lot from people coming to KK, if only the place is as interesting as Langkawi.

World Chinese Muslim Trade and Culture Forum
20 May 2010 (afternoon)
and 21 May 2010

My first seminar finished at 12pm so ample time for me to catch the 2nd seminar which will start at 2.30 pm. Near to my house some more. Anyway, I was also looking forward to this forum as I think Muslim Chinese in Penang should do something in promoting halal Penang Chinese delicacies to tourists. For example, our Sar Hor Fun, our Bak Kut Teh, our Hokkien Mee (in KL it is known as Prawn Mee), Tai Lok Mee (in KL it is known as Hokkien Mee), Char Kuey Teow and the list goes on and on ...

Upon arrival, I saw that there were more Muslim Chinese from China promoting their products than ours. In fact, language post to be the main barrier. Our Malay Muslim entrepreneurs clearly are not interested in Nanjiang, Krygystan and Kazakhstan minority ethnics products of traditional herbal remedies and handicrafts which are quite similar to Turkish. Our products in fact looked far superior in terms of packaging and branding, but again I didn't hear any business negotiation going on ... except for one stall.

It was a Malaysian Muslim Chinese stall selling Roasted Duck Rice belongs to Mr Muhammad Chan. It attracted Muslims from both side of the continent. At first I wondered why until I recalled Auntie Ming's Silk Road Journey last year. Nanjiang (Hui Chinese), Krygystan and Kazakhstan ethnic minorities main protein source are mutton and lamb. Roasted duck I guess is a new delicacy to them, and also to some Malays. I managed to get myself the owner's business card (not the roasted duck unfortunately) for future reference.

I forgot to collect the translation device from the organiser during the forum so I had not choice but to make do with my limited Mandarin. The speaker from Nanjing was not too bad as she is a Hui Chinese, at least I understand the gist of her speech. It was the speaker from Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan that made me cringed my ears to listen closely. They sounded like French speaking Mandarin. Hehehe ...

Anyway, I tried the Rose Tea in one of the stalls ... kinda remind me of the story of Princess Fragrance from a Chinese novel The Book and the Sword.

Colours of Malaysia @ Dataran Merdeka
22 May 2010

Bunkface performing at Dataran Merdeka, venue of Citrawarna

One of the things that I regretted on my trip this time was forgetting my DSLR. I brought my little Ix (Canon Ixus 850IS) but a compact like Ix "memang tak sesuai" to capture photos of event on a grand scale like this. The movement, the facial expression, the depth of colours. What a waste of opportunity! Ya lah ... busy acting like a Cik Pengarah instead of Mie the Photographer.

If only I brought my DSLR, the backround of Sultan Abdul Samad Building when the sun almost set was "lo and behold"

Colours of Malaysia or Citrawarna showcase Malaysian T ourism in few segments - Northern Region as Food and Fruit Paradise, The Central Region as Mega Sales and Shopping Paradise Eastern Region Homestay, Southern Region The Golden Beaches and Islands and Sabah and Sarawak - Ecotourism. I have never seen Citrawarna live before so couldn't make the comparison. However information that I gather from some blogs and press release said that Citrawarna 2010 was more colourful and vibrant than before.

One of the Directors asked me, is it worth it? Spending millions of taxpayers money for one-off event like this. Quite a difficult question to answer.

Martha Stewart busy taking photos on her handphone.

Deep down I am sure that they may be good reasons that Citrawarna is an annual event since 1999. However, I couldn't help comparing it to F1 Sepang Grand Prix when suddenly we find all the hotels are fully booked and my dear friend Seelan, who owned an event management company was no where at sight! His company was hired by Petronas and later BMW to organise the Pitch Pulse. Or maybe I should look at somewhere near home like Sarawak Rainforest Music Festival.

Despite the grandeur of the event, Citrawarna lacked promotion and branding. Plus it is not followed later by sequence or series of events. So tourists do not want that. Citrawarna must either be the beginning or the closing (climax) of an eventful week or eventful month. For example, Citrawarna showcase Penang as Food Paradise ... it was not followed by Penang holding a food based event. What I think was really not right is Tourism Malaysia bringing guests from all over the world to watch the show. It is a bad indicator too ... in a sense that Citrawarna are not in their radar.

We shall see next year when all the State offices are fully operational and functional. Perhaps Colours of Malaysia should be a joint effort of all the States instead of a one off event ... u know after the event .. that's it.


norzah said...

Wow, a new format with a 'Read More Here" link. It's very good for the brief news type of communique, J,
but for telling a story... well it depends on the type of story and how you want to tell it. The continuous (or total immersion) way or the 'interuptus' style. The choice is of course with the story teller. With many stories to tell, I guess the quick cutaway TV style, can reduce the danger of causing mental strain, hehehe.
As a reader, to comment on a compendium of experiential adventure, is quite exasperating. Susah nak fokus. Your comment on Westside Story, for example, deserves close scrutiny. Tony's seluar katuk scene evokes a lot of emotions in me, but tak boleh cite panjang di sini. So also about whether the Citrawarna bash is worth the expenditure, You've covered them all well tapi interlude-interlude pendek ni kurang memuaskan kecuali jika itu memang dirancang supaya keinginan pembaca lebih memuncak, hehehe. Cukuplah dulu, kan?

rambomadonna said...

Norzah: ni lah akibatnya kalau blog ditulis byk hari. Makin lama idea makin byk and jadilah mcm entri kali ini. mula2 memang takdak idea tp lps tgk Prince of persia idea mencurah-curah.maybe hormon estrogen meningkat. I think I discussed each segment quite heavily kan? And bila I baca balik I think each topic deserve d to be discussed individually. Hehehe

norzah said...

Itulah maksud i, bincang satu-satu secara tersendiri akan lebih memuaskan. Tidak macam sedang syok makan, habis pulak hidangan yg disukai. Tapi memanglah banyak jenis hidangannya. Boleh rasa semua to whet the appetite. Cuma tak sampai puas selera, hehehe. Kalau memang begitew tujuannya, oklah, lepas rasa kena termenung nak lagi...

rambomadonna said...

Norzah: Komentar itu mengingatkan I kepada ayat2 Puss in Boots ... "feed me if you dare". Tgk apa jadi, hilang keseksian dia sebagai seorang charmer akibat perut boroi.

Actually for TimeOut KL entry nie I nak highlight on program non-stop dari 19-22 May berturut2. Tapi while buat narration, masa tu baru jer habis tulis review on movie marathon so gaya penceritaan yang berbentuk kritis masih tak subside lagi. Nampak heavy pulak topic i bincang.

Maybe its a way to divert attention pembaca dari isu "panas" seperti that mild seluar tok kadok and citrawarna expenditure. So penulis takleh jadi sasaran kritikan pulak hehehe

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