Friday, October 23, 2009

Day 1: Youth Leadership Camp '09

When I first got to know about the Youth Leadership Camp, I didn't exactly think that it would be anything special as it was mostly about talks and spiritual stuff, yadi, yadi, ya....

For a start, allow me to tell you briefly about the camp. Two youth leaders from each BEC zone are only allowed to join this camp. The camp was to be held at Dominic Villa, Genting from the 16th Oct till the 18th. About 36 youths from the Holy Family Kajang Church participated.

I arrived at the church with Greg, our zone youth leader where we were to assemble before we left for Genting at 5p.m. The chosen youths who participated came from different language groups like the Mandarin and Tamil group.

When the bus arrived, we were kinda behind schedule. To make things worst, during the journey, there was a massive traffic jam and apparently, somebody had to use the loo!

Eventually, we stopped at a nearby Shell station. Christine told us, "Make it quick and be back in 2 minutes!"

As soon as the door opened, everybody went out of the bus! So much for those 2 minute quickies...

By the time the whole bus was empty(even the bus driver was gone), I finally got out with only RM 5 on me and walked towards the shop. I looked at the shop to find that the whole place was (not surprisingly) full of people! I went over to the chips section, chose a tomato flavoured packet, and went right to the counter without looking out for anything else I might be interested in.

Boy am I glad I was quick! As soon as I got out of the shop, there was a long cue at the counter.

We were very late when we arrived at Dominic villa. We were actually scheduled to arrive by 7p.m or earlier, but we arrived at 9 instead. So, the speakers weren't so happy about that. Dragging our luggages up the many staircases, we were first shown to our dormitry.

Isn't it lovely? The last time I've ever slept in a dormitry was terrible! The HUGE dormitry that the people I shared with have to use ONE toilet! ONE! That means we have to wait one by one to use the toilet, which is ridiculous! Speaking about toilets, this is our dormitry toilet.

Hmmm....... I think I'm gonna like it here!

We hastily had a cold dinner(beacuse we came late) and went down the hall to meet our speakers. The speaker of the night was Alvin, and he's so awesome! Everybody enjoyed his talks about God's love (and his love stories since childhood). We stayed up late that night because we had to cramp 2 sessions into one as we had already missed the 1st session before we arrived.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Day 2: Inner Healing

I cracked open an eye, wondering where was I by the sound of a loud alarm at 5 in the morning. It took me a moment to realize that I was in Genting for the Youth Leadership Camp! Then I fell asleep again because there's NO WAY I'm waking up as early as 5 in the morning, thank you very much.
I woke up once again at 6.30 a.m. Man, those girls sure are desperate to bath in the morning! I heaved myself off the bed and got ready for the day. For breakfast, Nasi Lemak is served. Apparently, I found out that it was Angelina's alarm that woke me up. As expected, she wanted to take a bath *rolls eyes*.

Being one of the first few who finished their breakfast, I took a stroll round the place outside the house. Outside the dormitry, I saw a flight of stairs leading downwards so, I went there first.

There was nothing much to see down there, so I went upstairs again. At first, I thought the stairs that led upwards goes to the dormitry upstairs. Being curious, I discovered that it leads to the top of a hill!

As I climbed up the stairs, my mind was whirling with imaginations; would there be a playground? A jungle trekking pathway, or better, the way to the Theme Park!

As soon as I've reached the top of the hill, my heart was beating fast, beads of sweat formed on my back, the wind blew on my face and the hot sun was battering against me. Putting on my sunglasses, I was disappointed to find that it was just an empty field!

When I returned to the house, I joined the others at the hall to begin our day with the morning rosary. Each time we said the rosary, a different person will lead us using different languages.

To make things exciting, we started off with a game called Simon Says. We have three actions; pray, go to confession, and fast. By round two, half of the group lost. Not long after, it all came down between Greg and Victor. (I'm not sure what's up with those 'campur' actions...)

In the end, nobody won because it would probably take too much time to determine the winner. During the lecture, we were then sent out to fetch something from nature that represents us. I found an unbloomed flower (to show that I have yet to bloom someday). Even this guy Rudy, went all the way to this Karoke shop to look for bamboos? I know, weird....

And there's this guy who found a 'Moses stick'! Hahaha!

There's this game that I really enjoyed called 'charades' where 6 leaders have to act out a certain ambition. The 6 leaders were Freddie, Daniel, Tasha, Catherine, Annie, and Christopher.

What they didn't know about this game was that they were actually acting out their ambition while taking a dump in the toilet!

First off was Freddie, the cowboy,

Next was Daniel as a Mat rempit! His acting was hilarious especially when he shouted "OH SHIT!" That really cracked me up!

And there was Catherine as a model.

Followed by Annie the Magician,

Chris, the DJ.

And finally, Tasha the Ballerina!

In the end, Daniel won thus making him the proud owner of..... (drum rolls)

Later in the evening, we celebrated mass in the hall with Father George Harrison (no, he's not one of the Beatles, just a priest). Before we began, we were given half an hour to get ready for mass and dress up decently. As I was about to get ready to take a bath, I discovered that to my horror, I forgot to bring my soap and shampoo!

Well, in the end, I ended up with a soapless shower but at least I remembered to bring my facial wash, toner and moisturizer.... the things I do to keep a pretty face...
After dinner, we had this Inner healing session. Alvin started off with his experience with God when he had trouble with his anger management and how he became closer to Him. Then we saw a skit which really touched our hearts. By then, I already heard a few sniffels, even I was close to crying.
Then there's the main bit where we were about to experience 'Resting in the Spirit'. This is when the Holy Spirit comes down upon you, making you fall to the ground.
As we prayed, giving praises to the Lord, a few leaders came by to pray over us by chanting some strange language that I have never heard of. During their chanting, I felt myself swaying backwards, trying to make me fall to the ground. I was so scared that I tried my best not to fall despite hearing the leaders say "Just let go, there's no need to be afraid. Jesus loves you!"
In the end, they've finished and told me to sit down. I turned around to find a few people lying on the floor with their eyes closed and many others crying their eyes out. At first, I thought the people who were down on the floor was tired and decided to take a nap on the floor. But isn't it a bit odd for them to do so?
Soon, I became frightened when I saw a few more people dropping onto the floor! Some people were even crying to the extent that even their snot started dropping out, which makes things pretty gross. It truly was an exciting experience for me(minus the snot part) because it made me feel a bit closer to Jesus, even though I did not shed a tear, nor did I rest in the Spirit. I retired to bed when all is over while others went downstairs to share some spine chilling ghost stories.

Day 3: I Rested In the Spirit

I woke up early in the morning by the sound of a loud snore and angelina's alarm. As I lay on the bed turning my head onto the lumpy pillow, I realized that it was the last day of the camp!

After heaving myself off the bed, I changed, washed up, and had a hearty breakfast of fried mee hoon and Milo. Once again, I went up the steep stairway for the last time up the empty field. My heart was pounding, the cold wind blew against my face, and I breathed in the delicious fresh air, thanking the Lord for all the wonders he has created.

It was only then that I realized that I was late for the morning rosary! Luckily, nobody seemed to care. When the time came for us to praise the Lord, I chanted Hallelujah repeatedly ( I think I have the gift of tongues). As I was chanting those words, my fingers started twitching and I could feel my pulse pounding through me! And when I stopped, so did my fingers.

When the leaders came over me and did that weird chanting again, I felt myself leaning backwards. This time, I did not fight back and decided to go with it and let myself fall. When I was safely on the ground, I felt a strange energy going around in my body; it felt like my body was moving when I was not. A few minutes later, I got up and sat on the floor. Once again, I felt this strange presence on my right, yet, there was nobody there!

Ever since that experience, I saw Jesus in a new light; he listens and he was always there with me. I could not forget Juan's words when she came up and shared her experience with us, "When I was resting in the spirit, I heard a voice that said 'I was with you, I am with you, and I will always be with you.'" Trying her best not to cry, she continued, but I totally forgot about what else she said.

Not long after lunch, we collected our camp T-shirts. I rather liked the design of this T-shirt, don't you think? I was told that Alfred designed it, but then again, I was told that somebody else designed, whatever...

All in all, this camp is definately one of the most unique camps I've ever been to and I have learned so much from what has been happening these past few days. Thank you to all the speakers who sacrificed their time for us, and thank you Daniel, Alfred and Christine for making this happen. God bless!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Of Mutts, Maids and Attics

Ever since PMR is over, I've got nothing much to do lately. However, there was a few highlights of the week these past few days.

First off, lets start with last Tuesday. Apparently, mom and dad found this mutt (the expensive type) lost at the field outside our house and took her in.

As you can see, she's obviously not a stray because:

a) Its an expensive dog. No pampered dog like that could possibly survive the real world.

b) Even if she were a stray, she would've been eaten already or something like that...

c) She has a collar, which totally seals the deal.

And to top it all off, that mutt was on heat. She's been dropping blood. Why, mom? WHY??? Well, since we've never known the name of the dog, lets call her fuzzball. My dog wasn't too happy about Fuzzball either; she's been whining ever since her arrival.

Anyway, my mom let Fuzzball spend the night here. While I was watching a movie at night, that damn dog WON'T STOP BARKING!!!! That mutt has been barking her head off for no reason. Even my dog had to sit right in front of Fuzzball and stare at her like some kind of retarded creature or something.

I tried everything to shut that dog up; gave the evil eye, came over and smacked her on the head, I even threatened to chop the dog up, boil it in stew, grill it, burn it, and throw it into the oxydation pond! But that made the stupid dog bark all the more! See? this is why I hate keeping stupid dogs like that in the house. I have no idea whats so cute about chihuahuas or shitzus and things like that. To me they're more like accesories rather than pets.

Luckily, just as I was about to blow my head off from all those pointless barking, the owner showed up! THANK GOD that mutt is gone!!

The next day, when I told one of my friends, Nailah about it, she went like "Oh! Does that mean the dog saw a ghost?"



I can't believe that she believes in all those old wives tales! That's just total bullshit!

And lets continue with today, shall we?

Well, starting yesterday, we have this new cleaning lady who comes every morning to clean the house. Her name is Janet and she's from the Philippines. To be honest, I like this new one because we hadn't had another maid since 3 months ago. She speaks english and she's really hardworking. She even cleaned the impossible places without being asked to like cleaning my bookshelves. You have no IDEA how messy my bookshelf is, its all piled up with books and you practically need a shovel to find a book in there! As soon as I came into my room, it looked like as if a fairy came into my room and transformed it!

Its soo amazing! It would've taken me one whole day to accomplish something like this.
Later in the afternoon, my mom discovered a leakage and wanted to check out the attic which is in my room...

Throught my whole life living in this house, I've never entered the attic before. So to me, its like another dark world up there in that black hole.

Mom and dad went in first. After a while, I've finally climed up as well.

As I climbed up the shaky ladder, my dog, Speedy came along and seemed to be waving goodbye at me.

It was pretty dark up there and looking down at my bedroom, it looked like a different world down there.

So THIS is what the attic looks like eh? Well, I never really knew that I have an attic anyway. As I was coming down, Speedy was on my bed. Usually, this is a no-no in my room, but its only because she wanted to climb up too, so whatever...

Man, how bored could I possibly get?

Monday, October 12, 2009

Going International!

What's up Bloggers? Its good to be back, and I'm officially FREE!!! YAY!!! I've just finished my last paper for my PMR examinations and I'm soo relieved!

Ok, so I know that its been a long time since I've updated my blog, so here goes: MY ARTICLE HAS ACTUALLY GOT PUBLISHED IN AN INTERNATIONAL SPORTS MAGAZINE!!

Can you believe it? I've never imagined myself to have my article published in a newspaper, let alone an international magazine.

I just feel so proud of myself, although most of the things I wrote was cut off and edited. To be honest, I rather liked my original writeup better compared to the one in the magazine.

But, I guess its mostly because they wanted my article to promote the companies that were involved with the Tioman trip that I recently went to with kids scuba (my article was about that trip just so you know). To read all about the tioman trip, click here! (by the way, that wasn't the one I wrote for the magazine.)

So this is the magazine my article got published in:

And THIS is the article I wrote!

Can you believe it?? I couldn't believe it myself either!

I'd really like to share my article from the magazine with you, but, its kinda troublesome to copy whatever they edited in there, so I'll show you my original article!

My Kids Scuba Camp Memories
By, Anne Wong Synpuhn.

When I first got to know about the Kids Scuba Camp in Pulau Tioman, I was thrilled by
the fact that my parents won’t be accompanying my brother and myself to the trip. That
meant that it would be ten times the fun plus no do’s and don’ts from my parents! The
very thought put me in a supercharged mood that I have never felt before. After all, its
time I stuck out on my own for a little bit and learn some real life experience that Kids
Scuba has to offer.

The departure to Mersing started off on a Friday night, due to the low tides in the
morning. By the time we’ve reached the jetty, it was already 2 o’ clock in the morning
and it was very cold outside. Unfortunately, the weather wasn’t the only thing that was
cold; the ferry we were boarding was colder still! I was shivering all the way because I
was cold, tired and hungry. In fact, I believe everybody was just as cold as I was.

In the morning, the day started off with a hearty breakfast and a dive for the Open Water
divers. Meanwhile, my brother and I went for a snorkeling trip ourselves. The fishes and
corals in Pulau Tioman are big and beautiful and I could’ve taken hundreds of picture of
them with the camera my father trusted me with.

Later in the evening, we had a quiz based on marine life and this is always the highlight
of the day to me. Every night, there are many prizes to be won, and every prize is
desirable to me. Unfortunately, I didn’t win anything that night.

Sunday was the opening ceremony for Kids Scuba and it was also the day we, the Fun
Divers take our first dive trip along with the Scuba Rangers as well as the Open Water
Divers. Our Dive crews, Tom, Richard and Adam are very friendly people and we’ve
warmed up to them straight away. Richard was our dive master for my group of 4 and the dive site was beautiful. The second was even better because I’ve finally spotted a real live
turtle in the wild while it was feeding! I was so happy that day!

Not long after we came back from our dive trip, we had a family activity and I enjoyed it

The second night was the next session of our quiz and this time, I was sure that I’m going
to win something that night. But alas! Nothing for me either.

Monday was probably my favorite day of the camp because in addition to another great
dive trip, we’ve actually had a mangrove tour. I’ve never been so close to a mangrove
before. While following the tour, we have also been told to help clean up the mangrove
forest at the same time. I believe this is definitely a great way to teach the younger ones
to care more about our environment and I fully approve with this activity.

Finally, it was the LAST quiz of the Kids Scuba camp session that night and the prizes
were the best of the best. This time I’m DEFINITELY going to win something! One after
another, each prize has been given away to anybody but myself and the prizes got lesser
but better! Finally, as we got closer to the grand prize, the next one was a lovely blue pair
of open-heel fins. Fins! Now that’s what I need. The question wasn’t that hard, but before
I could even think of the answer, I quickly put up my hand. It took me a few seconds to
think of the answer, but I got it right and I am now officially the proud owner of the pair
of blue fins.

In the end, the camp with Kids Scuba was truly a wonderful experience for me. I made
new friends, snapped some awesome pictures, and best of all, I came back feeling more
confident and independent along with great memories of my time spent with Kids Scuba.
I truly enjoyed myself there.

What do you think?

To be honest, I think I can do better than that, but I'm quite satisfied with myself anyway.

And about my PMR exams, pretty much ok, take it or leave it.

Ok, for some reason, Blogger can't seem to publish this thing properly because I know its hard for you to read the article when the sentences are cut off abruptly. So do forgive google.

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