Monday, June 25, 2007

Vietnam: Ho Chi Minh

I was recently in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) for a couple of days, surprisingly all flights (Malaysia airlines at least) were full. Hotels were fully booked too. Initially we were supposed to stay at the Park Hyatt which would have set me back about USD250 a night, but since it was fully booked our partners recommended Majestic Saigon

The Majestic is one of the oldest hotels in HCMC and was established in 1922. Staying at the Majestic, brought back fond memories of E&O Hotel in Penang.

I was pretty impressed with the lobby and was amazed by its tall ceilings.

Nothing to shout about, as far as the room goes, but when I entered the washroom I was greeted by the largest sink I have ever seen!!! Its seriously big, I mean I could use it as a bathtub for Anthony!!

The hotel roof top bar has a wonderful view of the Saigon River...

One thing that never ceased to amazed me was the amount of motorcycles on the road!!!

On my first day, I tried to cross a busy took me more than 10 minutes. According to locals, "just walk confidently across the not stop in the middle...walk with a consistent speed...the motorcycles will avoid you!!" true enough, they did! what a scary experience.

My co-workers and I could not help but make a pilgrimage to "Parkson" a Malaysian chain store. Price wise it is similar to Malaysia.

While waiting for our cab (its only RM50 for one day...really cheap) outside of Parkson, I noticed that Vietnamese do not have an inkling of what "side walks" are meant in point is the above pic. In a short span of 10 minutes I saw 5 cars driving along the side walk to avoid the traffic!!!

Anyway, I am due back in HCMC in about 3 weeks, will post a more comprehensive report...till then, how do you pronounce pepper in Vietnamese? Its sounds really obscene in cantonese!!

Monday, June 18, 2007

Bragging Rights!!!

On Sunday June 17th I participated in HeiTech's Annual Golf Tournament. Two medals were being offered, namely the Chairman's Cup (handicap 15 and below) and the President's cup (handicap 24 - 16).

Initially I was reluctant to play, as I have not had the time to practice and the last time I played on the greens was just after Chinese New Year. Anyway my co-workers finally convinced me that I should join just for fun.

Anyway, I only managed to get in 4 sessions at the driving range prior to the tournament...

unexpectedly I came in second!!!...I scored a total of 20 points according to the Stableford scoring system. The winner of the President's cup scored a total of 17 points. Surprisingly I only lost 2 balls compared to the usual 10!!! haha...

I won RM250 worth of ISETAN shopping vouchers...looks like I have to take the missus for a spot of shopping this weekend.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Toronto: Woofstock

Some of you are pretty well aware that the "Ang-Mo" really pamper their pets. Dogs don't just eat scraps from the kitchen but get doctor prescribed diets, presents at Christmas, spa treatments, and even get pushed around in strollers.
Now they have Woofstock, a Festival for Dogs. What happens at Woofstock? Just about anything that goes on for humans, just replace it for dogs. So where there would be high tea, contests, free food for humans... there would be all of the above for dogs. It brings loving your pet to another level... a bit much don't you think?

Toronto: Naked Bike Ride
No we didn't bike around naked! But a group of people bared all (except for footwear) as they cycled down the streets of downtown Toronto. Their aim is to bring awareness to pollution caused by vehicles.

We found it quite amusing, since we weren't sure whether they were a bunch of loonie-bins... until we saw that they were escorted by fully clothed policemen on bicycles.