Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Short Notice

Namaste my blog army,

I know I am not suppose to write this crap because I just uploaded one yesterday but what the hell, who the hell give a damn whether I write one time or many times.

Instead of answering the same thing many times to lots of people, I figure, I better post up a memo here, on my blog, since I have myself a blog.

I am now at XPRESS. They just played Queen's classic, Pink Floyd's "Another brick in the wall" amd now on the air is Scorpion's "Send me an angel".

Anyway, the business trip cum travelling to New Delhi is all fixed. The train ticket had been confirmed and right now, is with Thomas.

Thomas and I will be leaving Pune around 7am, tomorrow morning and need to catch a train in Mumbai, at 1145 am. By the way, tomorrow is India' National Republican Day (holiday) and I got to board a train.

The class 2 air conditioned ticket cost us Rs 2600 one way (Rm 260). We will be in the train for approximately 20 hours and expecting to reach New Delhi around 10 in the morning.

We had been warned to bring extra cloth because in the day time, delhi is experiencing 10 degree and in the evening or at night, it is negative. Fuck! My lips is already dry up but now, it is going to get even worse.

We won't be starting our work at the Delhi branch until monday. So, we will have Thursday until Sunday to hang or bum around. First, we will meet up with Gesine and she will show us around.

Then, the plan is, we will be travelling to Taj Mahal, Agra. And if time permit, we will be going to Jaipur, Rajakhstan. These are the MUST places to travel to when in India. Don't believe me? Go refer to Lonely planet or Rough guide.

Now, XPRESS is playing Pearl Jam's "Last Kiss". Then as schedule, we will start our work on monday until wednesday, doing the stuff like meeting with branch manager and sales engineers, observation, meeting customer etc. Thursday onwards, I will be free again until sunday. Thomas is expected to board the train back to Pune alone while I will spend more time with Gesine, travelling to Rajakhstan. (elsewhere is we already travel to Jaipur the first weekend)

So, in short, I will be out of Pune from tomorrow onwards (26/01/05) until (07/02/05). I will write my travelling journal and upload it to this blog accordingly. Come back for more.

By the way, my boss just gave us like Rs 8000 per person ina advance for this trip. If it is not enough, claim la...apa lagi...

OK la... love and regards


Monday, January 24, 2005

“Catch 22” all the way

24. 01. 2005
Last week was all-wrong, in anything and everything I did hence the subject, Catch 22. Literally it means no matter what you do, things will go wrong. Quite similar to that of Murphy´s law.
Before I go on lamenting my weekly bullshit, allow me to wish you "Selamat Menyambut Aidil adha". Although I am in India, I could feel the vibe of the celebration, because of the Muslim population here.

The first catch 22 was, the cancellation or rather the "rain-checking" of my New Delhi business cum travelling trip. If this trip was game, then I am not supposed to write this bullshit right now. I am suppose to be in Delhi´s branch office, hooking up with Gesine the Gytneth Patrow, awaiting for the national parade in conjunction with India´s National Republican Day, travelling around Delhi which currently experiencing a very cold weather (less than 10 degree), then travelling to Jaipur, Rajakhtan and Taj Mahal, Agra.

But the fact is, today is Monday morning and I am in the office and writing this crapshit to you and me (in future) while neglecting all my working responsibilities.
So, what happen? My boss had approved our trip but the catch 22 was the secretary didn´t manage to book the express train ticket. That was the catch 22, the petty one.

So, Thomas and I had to spend our weekend in Pune, meaningless, not as anticipated. Mario, David, Marielle, Neils and Meike left to Hampi, Southern India for their travelling trip. Remember? The place where I wrote my "Hampi, the ancient civilisation revisited" some two month ago. So, the house left only me, Thomas, Omar and Anna, which most of the time not around, either hanging out with his flamboyant boss or working.

Thomas and I agreed that Omar is getting strange and weird eversince he started to read Neill Walsch´s "Conversation with God". He is now getting more philosophical about the existence of life, death, religion, yoga and stuff. He seems to be talking and following what his soul wanting him to do.

Nothing much to boast about that weekend, except for few more catch 22. Saturday morning, Omar and I went to Laksmi road with his scooter, to ronda-ronda kotaraya which I ended up buying the new John Grisham´s "The Broker" and Omar ended bought some expensive yoga books and Dan Brown´s "Digital Fotress". That night, instead of going to the latest dance pub "Fire & Ice", I spent that night at home, alone, with few bottle of cheap booze and a rented movie, a 70´s classic "Scarecrow" starring Al Pacino and Gene Hackman. I guess I just wanna chill at home and save more money for travelling. Also, because I was broke already, not much money left.

Sunday morning, I woke up with so much of satisfaction and happy feeling because it was a good and long sleep into wonderland. Like every Sunday, I got so charge up and started to clean up the living room and later settle down with Jim Morrison´s bio before I dozed off again on the couch.

Jim Morrison and The Doors was now the most famous, at the top, American band in that year, which is 1968 with the song "Hello, I love you" topping the American chart. Harrison ford (Yes, your Indiana Jones or Star wars hero) just joined The Doors´s roadie or crew member and among his chores was to transporting some specific amps and also to find some herbs for The Doors.

The rest of the doors with the producer and the recording house just sold the right of "Light my fire" to General Motors for their latest car advertisement and the decision of this deal marked the beginning of the end of The doors when Jim was so piss off with the facts that the decision was made without him (he was drunk and disappeared like always for few days). He used to call them brothers but now, he call them the associates and he don´t trust them anymore like he used to.

That year was also the year The Doors penetrated into European market with their tours to Germany, Holland, Sweden and Denmark.

The second catch 22 was the package that I was anticipating so much from Malaysia. After so much of hassles and so much of involvement, I managed to get the package from DHL. But, the catch 22 was, DHL want me to pay an unexpected tax duties for 800 rupees (RM 80) which according to them, is out of their control and is required by the custom of India.

Nevermind that my brother had to paid RM 52 (after 75% off) but now the receiver, which is me, had to pay 80 bucks, which kind of piss me off because no one clarify this to me beforehand. If I was to know prior to this, I might not want this package sent in the first place. I am mad because of the Indian custom not because of DHL or whoever. How can they impose something like that? Fucking ke ling kia…

Even more pathetic, the package which contain 21 package of Maggi (about RM 15) cooking ingredients are suppose to cut my living cost since I am so much into cooking, but now because of the custom, the plan got backfired, I have to pay even more money in order to save. Who´s the fucking victim? Who got fuck up big time? Of course, me…

The package also contain some of my favourite CD namely my instrumental Jazz CD of Evan Mark (original, bought it from flee market) and 5 pirated CD namely Bob Marley, OAG, Dream Theatre, Motley Crue and Mr Big which total value are about (RM 25). See the shitty senseless thing here, the package is not even RM 80 but the tax are, not to mention the cost of sending.
I decided to dump the package despite my high anticipation on these things. I was planning to cook more Malaysian foods for friends here as well as to listening to more of my favourite CDs but now all are in vain.

You may say: Ah…cmon, it is just RM 80… but when you are into a situation, a traveller´s situation, then things are different especially when it comes to budgeting. When you are traveller, you need to think like a traveller. Even the European trainee, the first mindset they change is to constantly telling themselves that this is India and they are earning rupees instead of euro dollar. With 800 rupees, I can travel to Hampi and stay for maybe 2 days or equivalent to my one week of daily expenditure.

Mei Ching, if you happen to read this, please don´t misunderstand that I am mad at you. No, I am not mad at anybody, in fact, big thanks to you, for your help and kindness. I am just mad at the India custom for having such law and the accumulative catch 22 events that happen to me, that heating up my anger at the time of writing this bullshit. And, please call my brother to collect the money. My brother thinks you are shy to collect the money.

Sunday noon, Erin, the girl from the State, Anna, their Indian friend and me (and later join by Omar) went to Barista coffee garden. We hung out there for quite a long time, until 6 pm. Just chilling out, dozing off, reading and cool chilling coffee. I was reading Jim´s bio while Erin was reading the biography of Che Guevara, the infamous communist who help Fidel Caestro in building the communist state. But the bio was more on his younger year, around his 20s and was about his travelling (with motorcycle) and how he grew to believe in communism. The book is entitled "The motorcycle diary" and is now a motion picture, directed by Robert Redford.

Maybe after Jim, I will borrow from her the bio of Guevara. Anna was reading "My goal". Everything was so fine until catch 22 #3 came along. Suddenly, I felt dizzy and headache. Within short span of time, I dozed off with Jim´s bio on my chest. And when I woke up after that, about 45 minutes after that, I felt not only completely dizzy and headache but my vision was almost blur and again, hungry. So fuck up that I can´t even differentiates between headache and migraine. I was like, fuck!! What the fuck did I do to myself? Did I take drug?, Did I swallow LSD?, acid?. NO!!!

So I took a rickshaw back home, stop by the grocery store to buy two doughnut, rached home, swallow two tablet of aspirin and fuck off to bed. Luckily, two hours after that, I woke up and everything was getting fine. Omar’s friend from Egypt, names Kamal just arrived for both travelling and business opportunity. You know what? You will not believe me of saying this. Thia Kamal guy looks like Russell Crowe, in his early Australian film, where he played the character of gay, having gay relationship with his gay friend, at the same time about his open and frank relationship with his father, discussing everything under the sun. It was 1994 and the movie title is "The sum of us"

After I woke up from the crazy migraine-headache, Erin, Anna, Bernard, Omar, Kamal, Sharly and Thomas went to Shisha café, for a very good and exquisite dinner. Shisha café, the best Jazz café, was playing some tracks from Buena Vista Social Club. Since the dinner was expected to be quite expensive and having little money in my pocket, I brought some beer from home (hid in my pouch bag) and open it in Shisha café. I had my dinner at Burger King, famous for its "Big in quantity, shit in quality" burgers. I stuffed myself like crazy before joining the rest at Shisha.
Talking about café, there is this new café cum Internet café, XPRESS just newly open. If Shisha is about Jazz, then XPRESS is all about ROCK. For a few days already, I hung out there regularly. And the best thing was they open till late at night, at 3am.

Songs from Gary Moore, Deep Purple, Mr Big, Smokey Robinson, Cat Steven, Van Halen, AC/DC, Don McLean, Scorpion, UB40 etc were played. I am so regular that every staff including the manager and the owner (Punjabi) knows me already. Since they were rock, I also shared some of my rock materials and they quite like it like Poison, GnR, Eric Clapton, Paul McCartney, Stevie Wonder, Styx, INXS, U2 etc.

Catch 22 #4 came along. That night I went back home without my favourite sweater. I lost it when I needed it most, when I am about to travel to the freakingly cold New Delhi. To conclude, I lost my Bono sunglassses in Goa, I lost my real sunglasses (again) last few day while riding DJ Shariff´s 180 cc superbike, I lost my Sheryl Crow CD, My new CDs of the Doors CD 1&2, my Eric Clapton´s blues, Kill Bill OST vol. 1 are all not working, lost my sweater, trip got cancelled or rain check, stupid migraine, stupid tax from the custom, dry lips, broke, piss off and etc.
So, tell me, why everything was so fuck up? I guess everything happen for a reason. So, instead of being so rage about it, why not just chill about it. Either way, I can´t change the facts that I am already fuck up.

By the way, Alp the Turkish guy left us, back to Turkey. Yesterday, a new German girl has arrived and tonight another German trainee is expected to be here. A German invasion, second coming of Hitler which I suspect Bernard the Jack Nicholson, elected spy of SS army, always acting weird and stick by the laptop.

Being Economy graduate, I always believe in the theory of the vicious cycle. That everything that hit the high, with also hit the low, like a cycle. So, for the past week, everything seems to me that it had hit the lowest of the low, so I guess, the next point is going to be on the way up.
Like Confucius, I also believe that everything that exists have its opposite site: heaven and hell, black and white, matter and antimatter, high and low, ying and yang etc. And for Catch 22, there is also its opposite side which I will call "de-catch 22". Please note that the word "de-catch 22" literally not exist. I claim it myself, but what the heck, if you like it, go ahead and use it but at your own risk.

Can you see the link? Catch 22 was the lowest point of vicious cycle and de-catch 22 is going to be highest point of vicious cycle and it is happening now.

First, my boss is still the same, supporting the idea of travelling to Delhi and at the same time, sight seeing (travelling). If everything is right, Thomas and I will be on train this Wednesday or worse still Thursday, unless no train ticket all the way until end of the month la…

I just got some of my claimant today (my pocket left like less than Rs 10), and will be getting some advances (of Rs 8000) for the trip and beginning of the month is coming, means I will be getting my monthly salary. Company agreed to issue me a letter for visa extension, and I already met up with Pradeep, for visa clarification and according to him, it is positive.

Will hook up with Gesine in Delhi most probably Thursday or Friday, depending on the ticket availability. I miss her so damn much that I can´t wait anymore to see her. And since our official working day will only start on the following Monday, we will stick to our plan to visit Taj Mahal, Agra and if time permit, will also travel to Jaipur, Rajakhstan.

Tonight, our friendliest and humble CEO and chairman, Dr. Naushad Forbes are inviting Omar, Thomas, kamal and I to a exquisite dinner in a extravaganza restaurant.

So, right now, I am going to fuck off and wait patiently, cross my finger, hoping that good things will happen to me (begin with the ticket availability).

That´s all my blog army, please don´t get offended when I say: NAMASTE MOTHERFUCKER!!!

With warmest regard, and big love (love is all we need),

Peter Ooi, growing goatie with clean shaving punk head

(The biggest motherfucker)

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Jim Morrison

JIM MORRISON: Life, Death & Legend. (In memory of the legend)

17 January 2005.

This week has been a very slow week. And the weekdays especially have been quite repetitive but ended fast. Thomas A20 and I had completed our "Order business cycle" project on Monday but our presentation to the directorial board had to wait until 24th of January. So, we can consider even freer than our ordinary day, doing non related works like browsing photos on laptop, trying to beat each other's time record on various games like "Mahjong tiles", "Pin ball", "Tennis", "shooting the birds" etc, smoking and reading in between job and others.

The whether here is getting colder again especially at night and in the morning as well. On Wednesday morning, while on the way to office, with Visa's "Dalam Gerimis", Dewa's "Risalah hati", "Aku milikmu" etc on the head phone, Chris, our van driver told me about his good news, the news that he had been rejected many times for the past five years, that he got a job as a waiter in one of the hotel in Dubai, UAE.

I am happy for him because he deserves this opportunity. He always told me about his desire of leaving the country and earns more money and sees more of the world but the call is finally here. He is smart, young, speak good English, a person full of dream and courage and also, one time played a professional soccer. If everything is going accordingly, he will be leaving for Dubai end of this month. Best wishes for him.

Natalia the Colombian chick also left us yesterday, went back to Colombia for good while Lucia, the girl from Portugal also completed her traineeship and left us yesterday to Australia, to be with her sister.

At this point of time, Jim Morrison and The Doors had just cut their maiden contract with Elektra record. Jim had also started a somewhat stable relationship with Pamela Courson, the girl that later in Jim´s life, would influence Jim's legendary status as a poetic rockstar, just like Yoko Ono did to John Lennon. I am so much obsessed with his biography that I carry it with me everywhere I go and read it in between free time.

Wednesday night was kind of chill, cool, and somewhat romantic. Anna and I were on the couch. Later my head was on her tight while laying down flat while Eric Clapton's classic played on the air. Like Jim Morrison to Pamela Courson, I was showing some of my own, original poems/ song lyrics to her and after reading it, she told me it was really good and that she like it very much, that one of her comment to me was she can feel the feeling of each written poems, the agony and the joyous feeling, the pain and the happiness feeling, the courage and dream and etc. The "untitled" poem, which I recently wrote even, prompted her to ask me whether am I in love or depression or not. I was like, "well…let put it this way, some of the poems written was real and some of them through observation and imagination".

She would later put and light a cigarette for herself and me while both of our hands hold tightly, exchanging warm. And then suddenly, Eric Clacton's live version of "wonderful tonight" were on the air and needless to say, hmm… maybe I will write a new poem/song lyric out of this.

So, Kek, what's holding you back? You don't have to think no more, I am waiting for you to put a melody to my poems and songs. Just like Jim Morrison. He was never a musician. He played a little piano but he forgotten it while forming The Doors. He was a legend because he wrote a very poetic and meaningful lyrics, his influence on blues and the beat culture and thinking, his rebellious thinking of antimilitarist, anti-authoritarian etc (which later turn into songs like "Light my fire", Hello, I love you" and "Break on though"). The rest of The Doors namely Robby Krieger, Ray Manzarek and John Densmore later brilliantly added the melody and their road to stardom was completely unexpected.

I don't know why for the past few weeks, I lost appetite on my company's canteen foods. I have been skipping lunch by simply eating some bananas even though sometime I was really hungry. Unless if Thomas, Omar and I go to Johnny's bar and restaurant, I won't be having my lunch.

Also, for one week already, I had been listening to old school malay rock music on the way to work. Songs like XPDC´s “Semangat pejuangan harmoni”, May´s “Sketsa sebuah cinta”, Kris´s “Tiara” and so on. Even as I am typing this, I am listening to Search´s Unplugged.

DJ Shariff brought a new bike, replacing his old bike. His new bike, or rather superbike 180cc is one of the famous high power bike in India. You can see Jackie Chan and the new model on the billboard everywhere in India. Sometime, I will take his bike and go ronda-ronda kotaraya.

Just down, DJ Shariff and I went to Laksmi road to check out some speaker stuff. There is this road where lots of dirty and bull shit whores, selling their sex services to hungry man. Those whores were dressed up in “sari” and most of them look even worse than Penang´s transversites.

Hanging out with DJ Shariff is like hanging out with a celebrity, say TuPac or Eminem. Since he is a very famous and elegant DJ, he seems to know lots young and party people or shall I say, everybody seems to know him especially the international chicks, the gorgeous chicks. After that, we went to CoffeeDay to have some ice latte, where I ordered “Tropical Iceberg”. DJ Shariff loaned us a new speaker and his Tracy Chapman´s CD. What a CD!!

Few hours back, a new trainee from Germany names Neill has arrived. Oh girl, I will fall for him if I am a gay. He looks like one of the main actor in a Hollywood movie, should I say more. Anna had to work to day. I showed Neill around Korageon park and brief and educate him everything he needs to know to survive in Pune, just like my first day, when the sensitive Polish Michal did on me, which almost got me into fight with rickshaw driver.

Marjolijn and Nathan just arrived from their South India travelling (after travelling to Goa with us).

I hope you actually did spend time read on the article I sent to you (written by Omar, inspired by Neale Donald Walsch). Because I really think it was worth a reading. The article questioning about our very reason of existence, why are we here?, who are we?, what´s the purpose of life? Simple questions that we never thought before. I am not saying I agree with every words written but nevertheless, it somewhat make sense to me as a human being but completely impossible to attain.

If you already did, then I would like to add one similarity that Jim Morrison shared with what he wrote, that shaped him to who he was (legend). His early famous chant that got him fired from the Whisky pub and created chaos to all his band mates and every one that related to him especially his producer was: “KILL THE FATHER, FUCK THE MOTHER”.

It seems crude and “barbaric” at the surface but in later part of his life, Jim confessed that the deeper meaning of this chant was, so I quote: “ (Kill the father) means kill all the things in yourself which are instilled in you and are not yourself. They are not your own, They are alien concepts which are not yours. They must die. Those are the things that must die. The psychedelic revolution (It means human's mind to me)”.

“(Fuck the mother) is very basic. And it means, get back to the essence. What is the reality?. Fuck the mother is, very basically, Mother: mother-birth, real, very real, you can touch it, you can grab it, you can feel it. It is nature, it's real, it can't lie to you. (It means human's soul to me)”. Obviously, you are free to interpret its free will.

Another of his thought that also similar to the essay was, so I quote: " I offer images. I conjure memories of …freedom. But we can only open doors; we can't drag people though."

"Our work, our performing, is a striving for metamorphosis. It's like a purification ritual, in the alchemical sense. First, you have to have the period of disorder, chaos; returning to a primeval disaster region. Out of that, you purify the elements, and find a new seed of life, which transforms all life, all matter, all personality- until, finally, hopefully, you emerge and marry all those dualisms and opposites. Then, you're not talking about good and evil anymore, but about something unified and pure"

This means that we going back to the basic of essence, when where we were first born onto this world, where our soul were still pure and innocence, not knowing what is good and what's evil. In other words, do or act what your deep within want you to, you gotto reach deep inside you, your soul and act it, regardless of what your surrounding are. Because when you act what your soul wants, than, that action will be the truest one because the soul will not lie to you. That's why it called reaction. "RE-ACTION". FREE WILL.

Enough shares of Jim Morrison. I hope you enjoy reading this blog article thus far. Now, I would like to share something noble that I did on Friday. It was my first class with company's educational program for the less fortunate kids from the slump. Omar and I was there to involved. Omar and I did a brief country presentation of Egypt and Malaysia respectively which most of the kids didn´t aware of it. Malaysia as a country is quite famous to Indian as one of the dream country for vacation. First 15 minutes, I did a video presentation to the 30 kids (CD courtesy from Tourism Malaysia). The kids were impressed of Malaysia, so impressed that one of the first questions from this girl was “Can you take me to Malaysia?”

Then I proceeded to explain briefly on where is Malaysia, the people that made up Malaysia, our daily activities, different religion etc. Of course, questions asked made the class richer. They were asking things such as what's our national sport?, what's national animal?, how does our houses looks like?, “do we have cricket game in Malaysia?” and most shocking of all was “is Malaysia a Republic or Monarchy?”

They were lots of cheering and laughing especially when I proceeded with my imitation of our monkeys, Silat, badminton, rubber taper etc while Omar acted out Pharaoh, the pyramid, praying etc. Those kids were really cute. That’s these brothers; Saddam & Islam, Mahendran & his brother, the youngest of all, Umar (very cute), Priya and so on. Omar gave out lots of chocolates everytime the kids took initiative to ask question, to participate, to speak English etc.

From country presentation, we spontaneously talked about “love”, “sharing”, “caring”, “dream and aspiration”. Some of them want to be social worker like their teacher, some of them want to be doctor, some of them want to be lawyer, cricket player etc.

It was a 90 minutes session, so long that we got to cut it off because we need to get back to work. Ms. Beena, the person in charge expressed utmost gratitude and appreciation and told us that the kids like it so much. So, next week is going to be our second class.

At present, this is my third time continue writing this blog from my third pauses. And now is Sunday morning, exactly at 11.15 morning, with a hot tea and cigarette on my left side and “Brazil Acoustic CD” were played in the air and Tracy Chapman songs on my headphone.

Yesterday night, Wim, Anna, me, Ellen the new American girl from the state of Louisiana, the new German Neills went to Shisha café, the best Jazz lounge around neighborhood. Omar and David joined us after that. So, we chilled out night away until around twelve-ish and we all parted our way.

This week had been a slow week and more relaxing week. But it was a memorable week as everyday is an amazing day and a memorable one because every single moment is a new discovery, had something to tell and to cherish.
Wim came by on Sunday afternoon and since his arrival, we were so busy copying MP3 from his music library (contains about more than 200 albums) into audio CD. I burned Eric Clapton's collection (12 albums which I don't have), The Doors' greatest hits CD 1&2, Jimi Hendrix's The axis outtakes CD 1&2, Buena vista social club, Miles Davis, Kill Bill vol. 1 OST, The Ramones Hits and a lots more. And the rest like Leonard Cohen, Tracy Chapman, Brazil Acoustic & Electronic CD1&2, The collection of punk Jazz have to rain check to other day.

In the spirit of sharing and exchanging resources as well as in the spirit of music CD collector, Wim also ripped some of my collection like "Best of Firehouse", Eric Clapton's "Me & Mr. Johnson", Vertical Horizon, Jaclyn Victor's "Dream", John's Mistress's "Are they stereotyped you too", Amir Yussof's "Aquarius", KRU's Greatest hits and lots more.

That night, Omar cooked for us a huge dinner. Mutton in tomato gravy, mast potato, bread roll, joint, beers, white wine and hot tea were on the menu. We shifted the table to our chilling balcony as well as the long cushion. We lighted the candle and playing the jazz of Ernie Smith (to accompany our dinner). The dinner felt like we were in Mango tree café, Hampi since we were all seated and lying down on the floor. The night was cold. It was great.

As I was typing this (in the office), I just met up with my superior about our project. To cut it short, next week, Thomas and I will start travelling to the Northern India, New Delhi for a branch visit. We are already starting our "Lonely Planet" planning. Tentatively, we will depart from Pune to Mumbai (4 hours by train) and from Mumbai (as a transit point), we will go straight to New Delhi (18 hours by train). We will work there for about 3 days and on the 26th onwards (India's National Day), we will have 2 free day ( and another 2 days in the weekend) to travel around. We will be going to Agra, where Taj Mahal located, and then to Jaipur, Rajakhtan, a province, where majority of the population are Muslims. If things is good, we will meeting up with Gesine, the girl I mentioned earlier in my blogs, who looks like Gytneth Patrow in New Delhi as well as Gokce the Turkish girl in Jaipur, Rajakstan. Then, we will leave on Sunday to Mumbai (by train, another 18 hours), the city never sleep, the Bollywood dream, and work there for about 2 days and then proceed to city of Baroda (by train, 10 hours) and be there for about 2-3 days. And then, to Mumbai, and back to Pune. All in all, we will be out station for about 2 weeks and accommodation (hotel) and transportation and maybe travel allowance will be covered. (hopefully). That's the tentative itinerary.

Later in the evening, I am going to start my first yoga class. That's all for now.
Love & Regards,


Monday, January 10, 2005

The rolling stone week

The rolling stone week

First of all, thanks to all who actually read the craps to the bottom and also to those who replied to me. It is great to know that my blog is visited though this crap is all about me and my life and everything and everyone that known only to me.

It is so damn hard to reset my mood after a 4 days trip to Goa, especially to a mood of living every waking hour, knowing I had to go to work. Life was so good and relaxing in Goa that my happening daily routine had become numb to nothing. But I think, despite the lazy and mood-less syndrome, I am (and so are the rest) recovering very fast.

It was a disaster week for Thomas A20 and me. We had been together in the same project team, in the same company, doing the ongoing project (analysis of order business cycle) for almost three-month now and upon returning from Goa, we found out that all of our files pertaining to our ongoing project (folder) were somehow deleted. It was no human’s fault. It was completely computer’s fault. So guess what, we got to re-do the project. Luckily, we got some files on our laptop (though it is not updated), so we only required re-do certain part of it.

DJ Shariff, the guy from Sudan visited us that night. He brought along a very big and long hash and a package of weed hence the beginning of what would to be known as “The rolling stone week”. Arp borrowed me his precious asset to me, which is his CD collection (about 50 CDs). His collection mainly comprise of lounge jazz, electronic jazz, punk jazz, Bossanova, Raggae, mellow rock, old school rock and some French and Arabic music. So, lots of new music (which is also my new interest) to accompany while we rolling stone. Some of the CDs that is my favorite is Pink Floyd’s “The other side of the moon”, “The best of Leonard Cohen”, “Collection of Dire Straight”, “The punk Jazz double CD”, “Bob Marley & the walrus”, “The in-house jazz”, “lounge Jazz album”, “Spyro Gyro” and “Beck’s mutated”.

So, Wednesday night, DJ Shariff, David, Omar and I spent our chill out time in our ever "chill out" balcony. While watching the clear sky, getting chill with 15 degree, neon bulb and hot tea, we smoke away the night until the clock rang at twelve. It was Omar’s birthday (DJ Shariff’s birthday is the day after). Thomas A20 got back in time and all of us including the sweet Anna sang him a happy birthday in our respective language. The singing took away our time for a while, but not too long because our journey and odyssey to the moon and great paradise was just about to begin. And the CD of the night that accompanies our journey was of course, Leonard Cohen.

My Mitch Albom’s “Tuesday with Morrie” had been read like crazy. Meike was reading it and she told me the story of Morrie got into her emotion and she shed tears even after she finished the book. The book had also prompted her to write a meaningful email to her dad (which she never did). And now, Omar is reading it and he is talking about it every single hour. At this point, I almost finish Paulo Coelho’s “The devil and miss prym”, about 10 pages to go. In this book, this time, Paolo dramatizes the struggle within every soul between light and darkness, and its relevance to our everyday struggles: To dare to follow our dream, to have to courage to be different and to master the fear that prevents us from truly living. And next in line, waiting for me to read is also another Paulo's masterpiece; “ Veronica decides to die” which I just brought yesterday. Here, I read as much as I watched DVD at home. I guess it is normal la…since we don’t have a TV or DVD set here. By the way, I had my first “Cinema Paradiso” experience in India last week. We watched “Ocean 12” at InOx. Though I admired so much of Catherine’s gorgeous-ness and sexiness (the best brunette of the year), but frankly, I think she is not suitable for the character. She seems fake and pretentious.
Thursday evening was another evening to remember. Omar invited the family of A20 (and Meike) to his birthday dinner at one of the high-end restaurant; MALAKA SPICE, which just located opposite our apartment. Everybody dressed up to the occasion like attending a high class (memang high-class pun…) dinner at Victoria steak house. It was one of the occasion you won’t see me wearing my Barney shirt and Adidas track bottom.

So, David, Thomas A20, Marielle, Bernard, Anna and I were there to celebrate with Omar, his 23rd birthday. It was a private dinner, only to A20 people and Meike. Not even DJ Shariff or John Archer was invited (Omar’s best buddies). The house gave him a present. The present was 3 volumes of Neale Donald Walsch’s “Conversations with God” (original, brought from a real book store, not the one I always visited). He likes the book so much. I felt relieved because it was my decision in choosing the book. An alarm clock was also part of the present, for an obvious reason.

After the long speech, thanking everybody for such a beautiful and meaningful evening and other craps, we started our dinner with red wines. He ordered about 3 bottles of red wines but he never drinks a drop. He quitted any forms of alcohol drink “cold turkey” when he was still in Montreal University. But the hash and weed still goes on for him.

All of the cuisine and desert and meals we ordered were as classy as that cuisine in any of the exquisite restaurant. It was the best dinner of the fort-month. The foods and wines was so good that one can start to describe the sinful acts of consuming them and the tastes of every bites in a way Hemingway did.

Anna and I were side by side, just like a couple. Occasionally caught in the act of feeding each other, whispering closely, arm on her shoulder and hers on my tight and stuff like that. But nothing is happening. Though we are very close to each other but so far, nothing had happen, including to the fragile me. I am still a one-tough motherfucker and ass-hole you knew.

If you think the night had begun, then you are wrong. We went back to A20, had a rest, another round of smoking and hot tea before we were joint by the company of the C1 residents. Dennis, Mario, Tom UK and John visited us. Thought they were not invited to the dinner, the C1 people gave a gift to Omar, a set of gold tiepin and a self-creative giant post card (in words and poster of two sexy blondes) that contains a crude jokes and explicit wording hence parental advisory were required.

So, we kick started that Thursday evening for two reason (Omar and DJ Shariff birthday). Since DJ Shariff is also a prominent DJ in “Nirvana club”, the club that play mostly hip-hop and old school songs (very cool pub, I like it), all of us that connected to him was granted free access (just like always). We were given a special entrance pass that had Omar’s name on it. That night, all the alcohol drinks was either on the house (DJ Shariff) or Omar.

While Usher’s “Yeah”, Bone Thugs N' Harmony’s “California”, Black Eyes Peas's “Let’s get retarded”, “Where is the love” were play in the air, we were of course dancing like crazy. At midnight, the whole pub went complete silence for 15 seconds to mark a cutting cake ceremony of DJ Shariff. Soon after, he stood up on the bar counter and started to re-launch the night into a hot party, just like the devil stood at the edge of fire mountain. Free strawberry shooters treated everybody in the house (about 5 liter). At that time, I almost high (not drunk) already.

Friday evening was the best day of the weekend, just like every week. But for this week, it was because I went for my second "cinema paradiso", this time I was watching Oliver stone's "Alexander". Being a self-appointed film critic of my own generation, this movie is simply awesome and fucking great. Being a person whose always fascinated on history related subject, Alexander the Great (Iskandar Zurkarnain), the king of Macedonian that nearly conquer the world at the age of 25, is one of my favorite subject. But I think the movie could be better, and should emphasize more on his early empire expansion. The duration of the movie should be longer, something like the Mel Gibson's Braveheart. The cast of line up is marvelously chosen. Val Kilmer, Angelina Jolie, Farrell and Leto are all great actors. I was watching "Alexander" at "E-Square", a modern complex of cinemas. I went with Thomas A20, his girlfriend and group of Iranian people. Through them, I came to know Sam (Iranian) who is also a movie buff like me. We talked lots on all of movies we watched before.

David the Chezh Republic guy, the McGyver of the house and Thomas A20 had bought a new bike. It is full crutch and it looks something like Yamaha's Sport-3. So, for the past few days, I had been to MG road for many times, cruising and rounding Pune City with the new bike. It was a good ride, a "ride the wind" one especially we are not required to wear helmet. The traffic was crazy, massive and lawless. Whoever who can survive India's traffic, can survive anywhere, and frankly, Penang's traffic (the most arrogant one in the country) is nowhere near pune's traffic.

Saturday noon was the best day of my life. While waiting for the mobile guy to fix my charger, I went to "Manney" book store (A real bookstore, selling original only, no more on the street) to look around. I saw a biography, which I couldn't ignore, that I must buy it, read it and own it no matter how broke I am. It was a JIM MORRISON'S BIOGRAPHY: LIFE, DEATH, LEGEND. Written by the same author who brought you "Hammer of the God" and "Biography of Bob Marley". His name is Stephen Davis. So, that Saturday mark the beginning of my odyssey to the era and world of 60s, where the revolution of everything, from sex, drugs, music, thinking, the beat culture, hippies, film, philosophy, poetry etc begun.

Jim Morrison (real name, James Douglas Morrison, 1943-1971) was one of the greatest 60's misunderstood master genius, intellectual of the time, the founder and front man of the America's legendary rock band, THE DOORS. Like Richard Branson and John Lennon or The Beatles, Stephen Davis started with Jim's childhood and now I am at a point where he enrolled to UCLA film faculty, same faculty with Francis Ford Coppola. Forget about "Veronica decide to die" (I already borrowed to Meike for her one-week travelling to North India). Right now, I am officially obsessed with Jim Morrison's life journey. Do you know? Jim Morrison's grave in Paris is the third most visited place after Eiffel Tower and Lourve.

Smoking session with the music of Leonard Cohen and Bob Marley and hot tea (and this time with the book of Jim Morrison) could never be better. As I was smoking with Omar, in our ever chilling balcony, there was silence in the air, just smoke and music. I suddenly thought to myself, sometime what Morrie said is quite true, that a complete silence can means more than anything. Sometime when you are together, it is not necessary to connect verbally, it also can be done through silence, time where heart speak to heart. Time where presence means more than talking. That's why you see people visiting old folks home, doing the same old thing over and over again without even talking, like playing chess for hours, watering plants miles away etc but still, the old folks appreciate and long even more for your presence. Because your presence means your heart speak to them.

Sometime, when sitting in the dark, alone, I also thought so many things that spontaneously jump to my mind. Sometime I think that making love is not about penetrating your proud penis into another's vagina and fuck off the next morning. I think it means more than that. I think waking up in the morning, finding there's someone laying beside you, someone for you to cuddle with, for you to hold and romance and morning talks means more than mere fucking in the night and fuck off in the morning. Though I will still like the idea of one-night stand and fling. Speaking of which, sometime I think you don't need a fling to have a fling. Sometime though time and unspoken words, fling will just happen, and when that kind of fling happen, you know that that fling is a genuine fling, born from the heart, connected by the magnet of two souls, surrounded by the just ambience. And that my friend, that genuine fling is a good thing, not a bad thing, as often as been wrongly stereotyped, wrongly framed in our static society. That fling, is a next best thing to friendship, because it never starts and it never ends.

Sunday evening, all of the trainees went for a charity performance, from the kids. Meike, the social worker, the lovely girl, my great companionship, the knowledgeable and intellectual person, musical girl was one of the organizer that attached to one of the NGO that brought us the charity performance. The kids' performance was simply a blast and awesome.

About 300 of these kids, boys and girls that are so adorable and cute delighted us with lots of dances, from the Elvis to the Disco era to the "80's pop to the Latin dance beats, to cultural dance and performance. It was a mere 90 minutes show, big stage, full costume, stage light, full audio-visual and stuff. We were so touch by the performances of these kids. These kids are no ordinary kids. These kids are from the slump area where if nobody care, they will grow up with diseases, depriving of education, depriving of proper and nutritious life etc. This event shows that there is someone cares enough to fund and finance their life through education. They look so lively, so innocence, full of charm, full of dream, and speak good English too…

The point is, these kids proven to us that everybody is the same under the sun, that if given ample opportunity, everybody possessed the ability to learn and to strive. The performances show us the aspiration of these slump kids that dusty future seems to be map out for them even before they were born.

One of the performance that highlight the night was different costumes of the kids, with different beat of music, light and backdrop, represent different feeling of human being; namely anger, jealousy, happiness, sadness etc. And the movement showed us the consequences of each feeling.

Sometime I think, the adult need to learn from the kids, about what came through their eyes and mind, about their thought and perspective because sometime, the kids can re-educate and remind us the value we used to have that we lost and corrupted along the way to adulthood, the stairway to become someone competitive, means and arrogance.

The message from the kids are so powerful that their innocence and their pureness touch us, the crowd, to the root of our heart. One of the performances was about loving human nature, and there was also about the urge for world peace by singing the infamous "Don't kill the world". Omar and I are seriously talking about involving ourselves in company's children home project where we will contribute our special time to them (Just talked to Ms Beena, and we are now officially attached to the child care program, teaching the kids in a edu-tainment method). David had filmed the whole performance. I will show it to you should I have the opportunity or when I go back to Malaysia.

As for now, Meike and Lars is going to travel to the North for one week, Wimp just got back from Holland, Thomas brought lots of chocolates from Germany, so much that we can do a chocolates steamboat, Anna and I becoming even closer and David and I are starting to talk about our travelling plan to Northern India and Himalaya, Nepal and maybe Tibet. (if you decide to join me, please be informed that you are most welcome)

Starting next week, I might be starting something new to me, a YOGA class.

Also, news from faraway, island of Penang, my second sister had just gave birth to a new baby girl. Her name is Iris and according to my overwhelmed mum (new grandma), she is so cute and adorable.

So, another week had gone and now, without even realising it, it has been three month already and another 3 to go. Now, I would allow myself to fuck off from the computer screen, as I would really like to go back to my Jim Morrison biography, with the music of Amir Yussof** (http://www.amiryussof.com.my/), Leonard Cohen or Eric Clapton and of course, hot tea.

** I met Amir Yussof a month before I came to India in his gig at Bangsar, together with Jamie Wilson (Ruhil's husband) - a guitar maestro, Casey (the seribu Impian guy), Peter Brown and the band mates. One of the greatest gigs I ever attended.
So chill!!

Love & regards,


P/s: Give me two days and I will send you GOA photo invitation. Happy Chinese New Year. Gong Xi Fa Cai.

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Goa: Heaven's paradise

GOA: Heaven’s paradise

The end of something is the beginning of another. Having said that, it means that the end of my amazing trip to Goa means the beginning of my daily routine. And as usual, the write about my experience at the end of amazing and unforgetful trip is always difficult because often, words are not as powerful as what your eyes saw and what your heart felt.

To keep my promise on updating my life chronicle in India to the end, I somehow think it is a must to record yet another chapter of my life onto this blog, as well as my black diary, about everything that happen in Goa and something that must only known to me. So, here I am, trying to consolidate every little point of events in Goa, from the piece of paper into another long-winded updates. At present, I just got back from Goa few hours back and had since decided to skip work, in exchange of nice breakfast and beautiful afternoon.

So, without further ado, lets rock n´roll to my little chronicle;

Day 0

It was Wednesday and I woke up as usual, at 7.30 am. The devil in my mind told me to sleep for another 20 minutes but he prolonged my sleep until 10.30 am. So, I woke up completely demotivated and a complete desire for a lazy day. It was then that I decided to skip my work by preparing a nice and wonderful breakfast, playing good music and read up the rest of Dan Brown’s “Angels & Demons”.

The book was such an intense and adrenaline pumping that I only managed to put in down when I reached the last page, which was around 1.15 p.m. Honestly, the book is going to be my all-time favourite, for a very long time to come, on par with Archer’s “Kane & Abel”.

I started to pack my bag around 3pm and Marielle, Omar, Bernard and I left our home to InOx to meet up with others. The people that in the same trip with me (to Goa) was Marielle (Netherlands), Omar (Egypt), Bernard (Germany), John (New Zealand), Michael CDD (Germany), Thomas C1 (Germany), Tom (UK), Mario (Slovakia), Dennis (Netherlands), Natalia (Colombia), Lars (Germany), Lucia (Portugal), Marielle (Luxembourg), Marjolijn (Netherlands), Nathan (USA), Meike (Germany), Thomas A20 (Germany), Arp (Turkey), Stephanie (Austria), Anita (Austria), Sharly (Iran) and I hope I don’t leave anybody else out.

When the sleeper bus came and when we check in the bus, I was quite surprise to see the sleeper bus. It is nothing like our bus at all. This bus is spacious and is fully furnish with about 15 compartments of double Decker bed, complete with mattress and pillow and bed light. It was my first time to see and travel with such a sleeper bus.

Think of that rock bands´tour bus or simply a celebrity’s buses. This bus is exactly the same. The first part of the 12 hours journey in the bus, I was with Meike and Veronica listening to songs from The Beatles and Eric Clapton.

I felt like a rockstar on the tour. You know…just booze, smoking, reading, music and girls. Throughout the long journey, we stop a couple of time, for dinner and loo.

I brought two books with me, to accompany me throughout the long journey which is Mitch Albom´s “Tuesday with Morrie” and Paulo Coelho´s “The Alchemist”. I started to read few chapters of “Tuesday…” that night and what can I say…It was a great start of what would to become a wonderful journey later.

Day 1

We reach Mapusa town (pronounce as Map-sa) at around 7 am and we were warmly welcomed by group of local cab drivers. It was such a crazy scene. They were chasing us even before the bus had a time to pull a completely stop. And when the bus’s door open, all hands were grabbing us, inviting us to their van and some even were screaming my name (I don’t know how they know my name) as in I was one of the fab four and there were the fans that desire so much of my signature.

We hire few taxi drivers to drive us to our dome, which is located at Sankara hospital. The dome is a Catholic Church’s dormitory. We didn´t manage to get any accommodation nearby any of the beaches simply because it was a peak season in Goa, where lots of tourist, day-trippers and travellers´s only destination.

It was written in the local newspaper that, for this year’s peak season, they estimated about 3 millions tourist in Goa. Although all the prices, from beer to cigarette to hotels to foods to everything were shot up five to ten times than a normal price during this crazy season, it was still consider the greatest trip ever. By the way, Goa is unlike the normal city you will see in India.

Goa is a catholic province where majority of the population is Catholic. And the building, the villages, the road traffic and everything else didn’t look like India at all. In facts, there is this place; a Portuguese settlement really looks like a common sights you will find normally find in Portugal or Spain. Lots of big churches, port, harbour, heritage buildings, and café and bar, first class infrastructures, no traffic congestion, and the whore town were surrounded by sea.

Immediately after checking in, we hire a van to Bagan beach. It was gorgeous. The golden sand and the café alongside the beach were all beautiful and yet simple. We had our breakfast at “Zanzibar café”, a café with wooden and atap hut.

If Phuket beach is all about live bands of Jazz, blues and rocks, then there is only one for Goa; trance/ house music. After putting on sun cream and few chapters of “Tuesday with Morrie”, we went to bathe in the seawater and it was great. Imagine strong wind, big and yet calm wave.

After swimming, bathing and playing with the seawater, we just laid down completely on the long chair and on the sand, enjoying the sunshine and strong wind and trance music. Trance music is really good, hand in hand with a beach life. While Zanzibar café were playing, the café next to it was playing Tracy Chapman´s “fast car”, Eagles´s “Hotel California” and other similar tunes.

Actually, that’s beach life. Doing the same thing and yet nothing for the whole day. Sleeping, sun tanning, reading, music, writing diary, enjoying the wind, ordering good foods, enjoying the sight of sexy babes in bikinis, dancing to the trance anywhere and anytime you wish etc.

Around 3pm, we shifted to “Suhir” café for a nice lunch. While enjoying lunch, there is this fat guy, from Wales, came to us to alarm us that the beach official were busying evacuating the beach after receiving a signal that big wave in underway and most possibly will hit the ocean in half an hour time. The message was suppose to prompt us to move to other safe side, but suprisingly, not even one of us heed the advice.

Tsunami waves catastrophe was such a hot topic and yet, we treated is like nothing like that will happen to Goa and life goes on. Even worst, some of us just laugh at it. This kind of reminds me of the story of Noah, who went around the village reminding all of the possibility of catastrophe but being laughed instead. I felt bad, but at the end I didn’t care. After about an hour or so and the message turn up to be a false alarm, the fat guy ended up with us, talking and sharing our travelling stories.

I went to the bathroom behind the café and was answering nature’s call. There was two sexy Indian chick was waiting outside. What happens was my answer to the nature’s call was a very huge and long one, so big and long that I failed to flush down the hole even though after I tried about 3 times.

This 2 sexy girl were impatiently waiting for me to come out so they can use the toilet but I didn’t want to because the poo was quite big and long. They started to knock at my door, and softly ask “hello, if everything ok?”.

I finally decided to come out and confessed. I looked at the two sexy Indian chicks and told them like a man, with my selamba attitude, that the flush isn’t working, that I tried to flush down the smelly anaconda but I am sorry, it just didn’t work. When I walk back to the café, all I wish was I will not hear in a trance party of someone shout towards my direction saying “Looks, that’s the guy with the big shit”.

When the sun goes down at around 5.30 p.m., the trance party begin at “Zanzibar café”, with a long table, fully equipped with audio-visual materials and lots of turntables. There is about 4 DJs and two of them were a beautiful and gorgeous girl. Everybody was dancing including me. Trance was great and I couldn’t believe it that I can dance to the trance beat quite well…

And there it goes until night.

Day 2

Thomas A20, Sharly, Arp, Stephanie and Anita arrived on our second day while everyone was soundly asleep. After the usual stuff like brushing teeth and face cleansing, we went to “Lilipur restaurant” for a very good breakfast at “Anjoona Beach”. We thought “Bagaan Beach was good but we were wrong until we saw the complete serenity and beauty of Anjoona beach. The rocks, the soft sand, the palm trees, wind of change and the sound of the wave crashing onto the ocean was the sign that our day couldn’t be better.

Trance beat through the big speaker was on the air before the restaurant change the mood to the music of “café del mar” (coffee by the sea). I was ordering hot mint tea, spinach omelette and toast bread and while waiting for it to be served, I went for a swim.

Summersault, dive, and many stupid jumps against the wild wave were really fun and great. And just right before breakfast, I rolled my first joint of the day and the feeling against the beach atmosphere and ambience was simply amazing. Café de mar didn’t last long. Music beat changed to the trance again. We were dancing again. Everybody was smoking joint, pipe, cigarette and bhang everywhere. Perfect moment for the beach. Beers, wine and fruit lassi was also one of my favourite.

Later that day, we went to the beach market to shop for some handy stuff. I brought myself a very cool shirt, a red shirt with ancient tribal symbol of Maharastra tribe people. I also brought myself a necklace and wooden cross. Day 2 was a New Year eve. After a few round more of trance, reading, writing, drinking beers and lassi, empty contemplation and swimming, we went back to our dome and came out again to Anjoona beach. Of course, most of our time, we were not together as a big group. Most of the time, I was with Mario, Meike, John, Marielle and Veronica.

Evening time, we had our dinner near the place where we would later celebrate our New Year. Meike and I did sharing a very good meal of Mexican food and a dessert. The story of the night was before the dinner, I was actually drunk a little. I drank 2 bottle of port wine even before I had my dinner. It goes with practically everyone else, whose activities were merely drinking the whole day against the backdrop of the beach.

“Paradiso” is the name of the open beach- in house club, the most happening open space beach trance/rave/psychedelic party. Of course we had to pay high amount of entrance fees but then again, it was a new year celebration, I would not forgive myself if refrain from going in. The place was so cool. It was on the hilltop of the Anjoona beach. The beach sand carpeted the floor. We were so high up that we can see the tiny ocean hit the small rock and the ocean. It was full moon and clear sky. So many people were there. It was a crazy moment. Once the year of 2004 was officially over and New Year of 2005 were ushered in by many others, whether consciously, sub-consciously or completely unconsciously, and the light and big bang of fireworks, we all knew the night had just begun.

I was so drunk. I reached the last stage of drunkenness, the enlightenment stage, the nirvana of drunkenness; BLACKOUT.

I couldn’t remember how many girls I kisses, how many girls I woo and God knows what else, I couldn’t remember to whom I speak to, couldn’t remember how smooth and hard I dance to the trance party and basically, I couldn’t remember anything. Only in the morning, I felt magical that I was at dome, safe.

Day 3

As the time pass by, I managed to remember a few brief moment of yesterday. Let’s just say about 20% of it.

And throughout the day 3, as different friends told me different story, at different point of the night, I felt happy that I was still alive.

Thomas A20 told me he saved me from falling out of the cliff (because I was found seating on the fence, drunk).

Arp told me that while they were negotiating rate with the van driver, I was shouting “motherfucker” to all the van drivers.

Stephanie and Sharly told me how many times I felled from the stage, on the staircase, on the crush bottle (my palm was badly cut with bruises and all). With all this small fraction of stories, I managed to recall some of the event.

I remember how I pee down the cliff (behind the toilet). I remember how hard I dance. I remember some of the girls I kisses and uhh-uhh-ing and finally I remember how I get home.

The funny part was I didn’t remember drinking anything that night except for the first drink. The entrance fees were suppose to be drinking all you can but I did the other way round. I guess I reached the nirvana of drunkenness from the port wines and beers before I entered “Paradiso”. The trance just brought out the drunkenness in me.

The price to pay, I lost my “Bono” sunglasses, my track bottom, my cap and my new tribe shirt was mostly mudded and of course, the bruises on my palm and the dehydration and hangover morning after.

It was one of the few most memorable New Year celebrations I had. I guess to everyone who’s also drunk; it was truly a night to remember. Mario was also blackout and caught peeing at the corner of our room (church’s dome), Marielle was caught kissing a fellow Dutch trainee from Mumbai. And for everyone else, I am sure they have their own tales to be told.

But all in all, I had fun to the maximum.

Day 3, morning, Natalia woke us up. She was happy singing “Happy New Year” in Colombian despite her hangover. She gave everyone a morning kiss.

The third morning, we had our breakfast at “San Francisco” café. A café located at the edge of the sea. I ordered an eggs fried rice, mint tea and chocolate milk shake. Natalia, Stephanie, Arp, Mario and I were on the same table. I refrained completely from the beers and cigarette the first few hours, a classic case of hangover.

But strange though, the dose of hangover was quite marginal. I guess it must be the scenario of the beach, the wind and the mellow music in the air. At this point of time, I almost finish “Tuesday with Morrie”. It was such a great book. It is a true story about a old guy (Morrie) waiting for death, sharing with the world about his perspective, a thoughtful looks at life, talking about how important love is, how important human relation is, about appreciating people and things around you while still can, about having a simple life yet rich, the culture of our society that make us feel bad and how we should build our own sub culture and so on. His favourite quote was “Love each other or perish”. I can only recommend but it is all up to you.

We were talking about the assassination of Colombian’s murdered Andre Escobar, Carlos Varderama and the crazy goalkeeper. To share with you, Escobar was murdered in 1994 not because he scored his own goal against USA but because of his dirty involvement in drugs with local Mafia. So, what you hear from the media propaganda is not always the truth. At least that was what being speculated..., of course the truth is always out there.

There is quite lots of dogs running around. And being a beach dogs they are of course very friendly, running and playing with me. I named all of them. There is Jimmy, Johnny and Jack which I spent quite a lots of time with them especially Jimmy. There is also few cows walking by the beach, I believe you call them beach cow.

After breakfast, we went to another “Curlies” café at the end of the beach. The whole time was only eating, drinking beers and lassi, smoking cigarette and joint, getting high, reading, writing a diary, pause, reflect, read again, pause, ponder and contemplating at nothing.

Day 3, we met up with group of Mumbai trainees. Some of them I met before and some haven’t. One of them is Lona, from Denmark. She is quite a cun babe. She happens to know Roff Dickson, a Dane trainee in Malaysia, what a small world. Talking about small world, the current trainee in Malaysia is Michael CDD´s faculty mate and friend. There is so many people from all over the world, mostly young people, hippies, students on vacation. Just name it, Portuguese, Turkish, Israelis, Londonite, French, Germans, Slovaks, Swede, Europeans, Japanese, Rastafarian and many more.

Omar on the other hand was celebrating the high-water and big wave by surfboarding to the faraway of the ocean.

Again, after endless trance dancing, lots of reading and writing, drinking and smoking, chatting, playing with dogs, swimming and eating, we went home to clean ourselves.

At night, we went to Bagan beach for a great dinner. It was by the sea. The wave was quite calm, cool wind, cold weather, and clear sky with million clipping stars. Before the dinner could begin, Marielle (Luxembourg), Omar and I went to the edge of the beach, in the boat, surrounded by the palm trees, with complete silence from around, just the sound of wave and wind, we rolled and smoke. That was before dinner. Prawn fried rice and sweet lemon soda was my meal.

Day 4

Like I said earlier, all nice things will come to an end. Day 4 was the end of our amazing trip to Goa. We woke up early, around 8.30 am. Nathan, Natalia, John, Bernard, Meike and I went to Bagan beach for breakfast. Tomato omelette and mint tea was my meal. The breakfast conversation was all about the O.J Simpson case, being a vegetarian, Quentin Terantinno´s movies and so on.

We check out from the church around 12 noon. Mario and Michael CDD decided to stay in the beach longer. We went to “Panjim” the Catholic or Portuguese city. There is lots of big churches, ports, harbours, Casino boats and the best about this town was the building, the architecture of the town planning and the village is very Portuguese.

I bet there must be a lot of “De Souza” out there. At this time, I had finished “Tuesday with Morrie” and the book left me with a melancholy feeling. How do I put it, happy and being sad at the same time. We had our lunch at “Quaterdeck”, a very expensive restaurant by the harbour. I was having a heartburn and hence, no appetite for food. I was also quite tired and didn’t talk much. So, I started a new book, Paulo Coelho´s “The alchemist”. The restaurant was good, playing the evergreen classic such as Elton John´s “Saturday night”, CCR´s “have you ever seen the rain”, Billy Ray´s “Arcy breaky song”, Chris de burgh´s “Lady in red” and other similar hits. Who can ever thought that India could be so difference? How would I know Goa is a heaven’s paradise if I never come to India? Thanks God I came to India.

Life has been good to me thus far. I wasn’t expecting anything before setting my foot in this land and yet, despite many negative things about India thought and told by friends and family, I still have a great time here, a time where I will forever remember until the end of days. Lots of things about India that being told or being thought, was completely untrue.

The travellers and the foreigners especially the Europeans like India as much as they like Thailand. You will never know until you get there. The best thing in life is to come out of your comfort zone, and see the world for your self. I used to say that the best time to do this is at the prime of your youth but “Tuesday with Morrie” had taught me one thing that, there is never too late to do the thing you like, only death will means you are late. When you make a decision, that’s the very beginning of what you going to experience and along the way, you will meet a lots of different people, that share with you different thought, you will experience so many new things in life that you would never think of. And that’s my friend, is life. Life is short and there is no time for us to think about “what if”. If you want to see the world, start now, there is no “what if”. No matter how detail you plan, things will never go your way.

All in all, I had a good life here especially when travelling and dealing with the community despites some minor complaints and low budget but that’s all small matter, which I rather view it positively. Of course I can always ask money from my parents but I rather not, because I want to experience the whole process of being independent, just like how I always were.

I spent all of my saving and my time and there is no way I am not going enjoy myself. Even now, I have no regret whatsoever on the decision I made.

To quote my friend, Alan Toh, a friend who was with me and playing a big role while making the decision to come to India and one of the few I know who reads my daily crap, “when you decide to go traineeship (or living abroad), people will tell you got lion la.., got tiger la…, got elephant la.., got zebra la…” but who are these people to tell you what to do and where to go, it is all up to you to decide. If you have a dream strong enough, nothing will ever stand in your way. You will learn and know when you reach where you are suppose to go and along the way. (Read up Cinderella’s “The roads still long”) which I posted up few weeks ago in this blog which partly inspired my decision.

About an hour before leaving Goa, we chilled out at “CoffeeDay” café, a coffee house that serve a very good coffees and ice latte. I ordered Arabian height ice latte, a thick creamy with flavour of cardomon. CoffeDay play quite a good music such as Byran Adams´”Straight from the heart”, “Back to you”, “Do I have to say a word”, “I wanna be your underwear” and lots more.

After the self-tour in and around the Portuguese town, we departed Goa the heaven’s paradise (I quote from my own experience) at 6pm with the celebrity bus. At the first part of the stop, I had managed to reach 100 pages of Paulo Coelho´s “The Alchemist”. It wasn’t as good as many claims to be or maybe I need to reach to the end to comment. But still, I think it was somewhat overrated la…

At the half stop, we met up with two American (which happen to sleep in next room, same bus) and we bum a piece of joint paper from them. The name is Braddy (looks like Jason Priestly), with REO Speedwagon´s “birds flying away” tattoo on his right arm (REO Speedwagon, the best ballads) and his friend, Thomas, an American-Japanese. (Dad from Mississippi and mum from Japan)

Braddy and Thomas are from South Carolina. Together with them, Marielle, Omar and I, we smoke out before the bus departed from the halfway stop, for what to become a very long and sometime bumpy journey.

Of course I slept all the way and from time to time lighting up a cigarette by the window.

We reached Pune around 9.30 am in the morning.

We were so tired and so demotivated like the day before we went to Goa and so Thomas A20 and I decided to skip work waited until 2pm, we called our boss´secretary to informed her our most lame excuses, that our bus was broken down and that we were stranded for about 3 hours. And of course, she was always fine with us. Omar on the other hand had to go because of his “Kaizen” training workshop. (We all work at the same company)

I type part of this crap and later, a nap, and woke up around 5.30 p.m. Omar was already home and started to roll a very long joint. Marielle (Luxembourg) and Lucia just left us, back to Buldana, another 12 hours bus ride for them.

That’s all. The greatest trip of my life, better than that my Phuket trip. The next trip will be Jaipur, Rajakstan. Another place with a complete feel and surrounding. Just wait for my Goa photo invitation, photos of the beautiful God given beaches, of the girls and the wild parties etc.

With that, Namaste!!

Love & regards,