Monday, December 18, 2017

WATCHING THE LIVE RECORDING OF THE FINALS OF "GEGAR VAGANZA" CONCERT


17TH DECEMBER 2017 ~ A friend from KL sent me (free) tickets to the finals of Gegar Vaganza Season 4 Concert staged live at Pinewood Studio, Puteri Harbour. I was truly excited as this was my first time watching a live TV recording for a live TV show. Mr. Haiqal Johari agreed to tag along without any hesitation.


Before the doors of the large studio were opened, there was a showcase concert outside. However more people were too busy queuing up outside. The process of getting people in was actually not that systematic but we were holding free tickets so we had not much say. We were among the last to enter and were quite worried if there would not be enough seats for us.

meeting Mr. and Mrs. Khir while queuing up


We managed to secure the seats at the back part of the hall so the performing artists on stage were quite far away. The sound system was however superb so we were very, very happy with the audio. 



supporters of Liza Hanim behind us


"Gegar Vaganza" is a singing competition for established or singers who have produced records, locally or from neighbouring countries like Indonesia. There six contestants chosen in the finals, and I am only familiar with three of them.






I am very impressed with the state of the art technology used at Pinewood Studio. The stage was just beautiful with multitude of spotlight colours and visuals.









spot the celebrities







All in all, the six performers were actually born to sing. They all had beautiful voices and could really sing different kinds of songs in front of live studio audience, which proved that they are not fake. I enjoyed the music so much even though I had never ever watched a single of this "Gegar Vaganza" programme on television, at all.


I have to thank my friend Puan Hayati Ismail for offering me the (free) tickets. However after being there, I will not mind paying RM100 for this kind of awesome performances next time.

Sunday, December 17, 2017

WHEN LOSARI BEACH BECAME SO MUCH ALIVE ON SUNDAY MORNING


15th OCTOBER 2017 ~ As I had been told by my guide, Losari Beach would be crowded on Sunday morning. When I thought I was early, many people were already there much earlier. There were already people on the street and waterfront.

Who let the snakes out?



This time I ventured further to the newly built bridge opposite Losari Beach, as I saw many people walking/running there. There was also a reclaimed land where a huge building was still under construction. That is going to be some sort of a trade centre if I am not mistaken.




I was there to enjoy the view as I was practically standing on the ocean.




Then I found a row of stationary and beautifully decorated vehicles on the bridge. The floats were there because there would be some sort of procession to celebrate an event for Southern Sulawesi.














There was also another event - a launching of a (government) programme where there were people walking on the streets in a huge number.





If you can't lead, then you follow.



I guess Sunday morning was definitely not the opportunity to spend longer time in bed. 

Saturday, December 16, 2017

BOOK REVIEW - UNBOWED: ONE WOMAN'S STORY


Wangari Maathai came from the village in Kenya and was among the earliest Kenyans to be chosen to further her studies in the US. However, being an intellectual was actually a threat to the husband and the male-dominated society. She was a person who had the heart of steel - being very persistent and determined in her endeavour to conserve the forest in Kenya, despite being a single mother to three young children. What she did mostly was to teach and ask uneducated women of the rural areas to plant trees.

Being an environmentalist had actually made her deal with the corrupt political state of her country and she was being seen as a danger who was always outspoken and loud in viewing her opinion against the government. This happened especially when deforestation took place because of (illegal) logging and development. Despite all the obstacles, she managed to gain international recognition and was later announced as a Nobel Peace Prize winner. 

A truly inspiring story and her auto-biography should be read by young people out there, especially those who aspire to be politicians one day.

Friday, December 15, 2017

MOVIE REVIEW - "WONDER"


I was already at AEON Bukit Indah on Tuesday but the whole shopping mall was in total darkness. The next day on Wednesday, the power disruption was still ongoing. Finally on Thursday 14th December, I managed to get to AEON Tebrau City to watch this movie after school.

WONDER is a story of Auggie who had a disfigured face as he had gone through numerous surgeries since birth. His mom home-schooled him but decided to send Auggie to a real middle school and then all hell broke loose. He was badly bullied by his classmates and life was miserable and that was the price he had to pay for being different.

I will not disclose more but this is the movie you should go and watch, and don't forget to bring a lot of tissue paper or your handkerchief. There are just too many scenes that will make you cry a river.

There was this very small scene when the family pet dog died. At night, when the father was alone, Auggie saw him crying. I unashamedly burst into tears - because when I was staying in the ward recently, my cat died at home. You need to have a pet to understand.

Most of the movie critics, including Rotten Tomato, awarded "Wonder" four stars. The plot is actually quite simple, you need not to think so much but just sit back and enjoy the story. Even though this is a tear-jerker film, you will still leave the cinema feeling good. You will also get to see Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson playing a more serious role.

Now I have to get the novel of the same title the movie is based on.



Thursday, December 14, 2017

LOSARI BEACH EARLY IN THE MORNING


14th OCTOBER 2017 ~ I went to Losari Beach which was situated very close to the hotel very early in the morning on the second day. This was about 6:30 a.m, and Makassar uses the same time zone as Malaysia. However, geographically it is situated on the further east of longitude so 6:30 a.m. in Makassar is already like 7:30 a.m. in Malaysia.






There were already people at the waterfront but not many so I could really enjoy the pleasant weather and the scenic view of the sea and the sky. 
















These places were filled with stalls, chairs and tables when I was here the evening before. It was magically transformed into a clean and clear place early in the morning.


















Too bad we could not have this kind of waterfront in the city of Johor Bahru. The development has robbed the Lido Beach and the Straits of Johor from the people. I am quite sure the locals would love to have a place where they could walk, run or just sit by the sea in the morning and evening.