4

The Root of the Matter

The weather in Genting Highlands reminded me a lot of Haarlem during summer. Except, it’s a tad more humid. The best part of sleeping at night over there is the fact that I don’t need the fan or air conditioner to keep me cool. All I need to do is open the windows and let the cool breeze breathe in my hotel room. Something I often do back in my house when the temperature goes down. Maybe that’s why I felt a lot like home in First World’s hotel room. Or it’s just a combination of everything. I will probably never know.

But what I know is that, every trip I make, I’ll always discover something new about myself. Every time I walk out of an experience, I bring with me a new theory.

I never quite explained how Wanderlust Theories came about. And I think the above sentence pretty much explains it. Theories in life are meant to build our character, hopefully strengthen our principles and eventually nurture a deeper faith between you, life and God.

So spending my first ever night in First World (usually I’ll stay in Awana because my dad loves to golf), awaken the kid in me – to simply be me, enjoy whatever comes and ultimately have simpler beliefs.

Waking up to this view was unbelievable to say the least.

To have breakfast with this view every morning is even more incredible! But that was exactly what we did the morning after. We were treated to World Club Lounge breakfast which I was told is where the very special people are invited to eat.

Well, what was it that I usually say..? Live the moment? Yeah might as well live it while we were given the chance.

This was the lounge we had our breakfast and I had experimented with the Panoramic settings in  Optio P80. There is something unusual about the photo but I shall not reveal what it is 😛 Anyway this setting captures three parts of the view you have in mind and then it will stitch all 3 into one picture in less than 30 seconds. A handy tool I might add, if you don’t feel like doing it manually 🙂

I suppose if you have all this modern techs to help you out, might as well use it. Depending on it is a different story.

Oh look who woke up as early as we did just to see off? A certain french speaking mime. I think Charles is from Cayman Island. One of the islands in the french colony. Also, Kak Zara has a secret crush on him 😛 Haha just kidding Kak Zara.

With that, another page flipped over regarding Genting Highlands for this trip. It was really thoughtful of Resorts World Genting representatives like Mr. Philip to send us off as well. Of course, we’re not bidding adieu just yet (since we still haven’t spend our points)..so we’ll make a return. Possibly a whole group of us again, who knows?

Mr. Philip and Dato’ Anthony Yeo had recommended us to visit Chan Swee Caves Temple. We were told by Dato’ Anthony Yeo when he was giving out his speech the day before that this particular temple was build on a very difficult platform, therefore back in the days men could not use any machines to help build the temple. So they had to do it manually.

Why did the late Tan Sri Lim Goh Tong chose this spot to build something on a difficult terrain? Apparently this is the area most strategic to view Genting Highlands. There you go!

Yeah, see how fun the MySelangorStory bunch are? 🙂 I really love this shot at the entrance to the temple. They either had really strong coffee, slept really well or running on reserve energy tank. Whatever it was, I love them all the same 🙂

Visiting this temple again finally put the curious cat in my mind to rest. Why? All this while, I’ve been having this image in my mind about standing at a chinese temple somewhere high up but I couldn’t remember where this place was. Imagine how annoying it was to recall a memory half rendered for more than a decade! Then it hit me, I had visited this temple when it first opened back in 24 March 1994 with my family who then brought a foreign friend along. This was that place I’ve been trying hard to recall.
A major “AAAAAHHHHH” moment right there you bet.
There were many beautiful statues standing tall around the area; unfortunately we didn’t have much time to explore every part of this place. It’s really huge. You could even walk up along the pathway to the top if you have enough stamina 😉 A must see place in anyone’s itinerary.
I’m sure there are some of you who wondered why were we in Genting when our tour is about Selangor. Well, Genting Highlands is divided into two between Pahang and Selangor. So there is one part of Genting which belongs to Selangor. One trip to Genting Highlands from my place behind the zoo takes less than 45 minutes (ok, depending on how fast a person drives), that’s how close it has become since the old days.
You don’t get THIS in any other place, because many of us have forgotten about Mother Nature 😦 We have to go to places like this to be reminded what we have lost or is about to lose. So sad.
Now that we have finally put a full stop in our Genting pit stop, we went to sleep (well most of us; some took this opportunity to take pictures of those sleeping) for the next 1.5 hours to Rawang. What is there in Rawang?
This.
Hutan Lipur Kanching. 
They might as well renamed this very day’s itinerary to “Bonding Session with Mother Nature” 🙂 There are 7 levels to this waterfall, it’s so high up, you’ll be proud to conquer the top without feeling like your knees are melting. Ehem, we only went as high as level 3 and most of us (including moi) were obviously not in shape to go all the way. Nonetheless, the view was breathtaking. The water was refreshing and cold.  It’s all you need when you see a waterfall.
Because this is Tourism Selangor territory, Mr. Fazly briefed us the do’s and don’ts while being here.
He’s been working hard to make sure we are good in our space. So the only other thing he reminded us not to do was not to feed the monkeys. For the obvious reason of course.
I guess one of us couldn’t help but did it anyway 😉 Hafiz oh Hafiz. Good thing it didn’t follow you home.

We ate at the campsite where the tents were. Happily eating our chicken from KFC, then came these rascals trying to take the food away from us. What the monkeys didn’t know (we didn’t either) was that, in Nicole’s past life, she was a monkey slayer. So she pretty much saved the day for us. Swatting the monkeys with a rolled newspaper, kung fu-ing the monkeys. Amazingly, it worked!

One thing you should also know is that, these monkeys love drinking Coke too. If only they know how to hold the can right side up… erm, if there’s a colony of ants roaming around the grass at Kanching, you’ll know who caused it. *Looks at Hafiz*
Apart from that, if you do plan to come to Hutan Lipur Kanching, do remember to wear proper footwear. It would be a bit ma fan(tedious in English) to take your shoes and socks off and then put it on again.
Ok, that’s the end of Day 3 Part 1. Part 2 will see us embracing our roots. Happy Saturday people 🙂
And don’t forget, if you like this post enough to vote, just go to MySelangorStory/The Root of the Matter website and browse through the days. Arigato gozaimas!

6

Very Insane Personas

It’s my first bus ride up to Genting. All motion sickness aside, I saw things that I will most likely never get to spot while in the car. Usually I’ll tag along with the rest of the Lotus Club members for a drive up, zigzagging along the sharp corners and bents. One time it spun on wet tarmac up on a hill there somewhere. That was some kind of insanity.
This time, MySelangorStory journey to Genting Highlands may not be as exhilarating with the engines roaring away behind my ears but I assure you, this ride is just as mind-altering. No money in the world can buy this experience. So seat back and enjoy the show I mean entry ;).
Let the spectacular story begin, part deux.
The moment we arrived at Genting Highlands First World Hotel, we were welcomed like Very Important Personnels. But I like to think it as Very Insane Personas (What? It’s true!). Every Senior Management from Resorts World Genting made effort to be there with us at the entrance. We were all aware about their tight schedules but to know that the Senior Management actually took the time for us made the trip even sweeter than ice cream. Even Tabby and Allie walked with us!
Ok I know, why is a 25 year old getting excited over two oversized mascots? To be honest, I’ve watched game show hosted by Genting every Saturday on TV3 more than a decade ago and the closest I’ve seen them (if it weren’t for television), it would be the statues placed in front of Wisma Genting at Jalan Sultan Ismail. So it’s been, you can say a childhood dream of mine to see them. Being able to take photos with them was enough to fuel me to jump over the moon I tell you! 
I must admit, I have a 200 year soul in a 25 year old body with a 5 year old heart. Err.. does that make more sense? Nevermind.
Oh did I mentioned YB Elizabeth Wong was also there to have lunch with us? 🙂
We were then ushered over to Maxim’s Club for our much awaited luncheon. Boy were we glad to see the food… the desserts were so appetizing, it’s a sin.
  
Don’t you just feel the love we were embraced by Resorts World Genting? Sigh. Never in a million years did I saw this coming..ever. Seriously.
Both Dato’ Anthony Yeo, Senior Vice President of PR & Communications and YB Elizabeth Wong gave a speech each, telling us how Genting first started off as a dream that came to the late Tan Sri Dato Seri Dr. Lim Goh Tong. 
See, every place we go, everyone we know will somehow have a story to tell; whether it’s about themselves or the events they’ve seen. Everyone has a story worth listening to.
By a stroke of luck, 7 of us were picked to dine with Dato’ Anthony Yeo and YB Elizabeth Wong. Lady luck must be in a good mood as of late.
Oh. And each of us were given an all day pass to outdoor/indoor theme park,  10k worth of WorldCard points (RM100), RM100 worth of Holiday Card, One night stay at Superior Deluxe with View in First World Hotel, VIP Access to Dazzle and breakfast buffet at World Club Lounge. Indeed we were spoiled rotten. My jaw literally dropped when Mr. Philip announced it to us. Resorts World Genting, you sure know how to welcome your guests. Hands freaking down baby!
Back in the 90’s when Genting wasn’t what it is today, things were much simpler. There’ll be butterflies hanging on the wall of the souvenir shops but today, they have Galleria where guests can learn the history behind Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Lim Goh Tong’s vision. A remarkable visit.
Sooooooo…..with RM200 in our pocket and a pass to make use of, there’s only one place we planned to go. That’s right. Theme park!
After 5 years, I have finally come to terms that as much fun and exciting theme parks are, I am just not really a big fan of them. I love theme parks but not so much when it comes to extreme rides. How did I know this? It went all the way back in London when a friend told me upfront that it’s not worth it for me to spend money to any theme park since I don’t go to all the rides. 
Perhaps it’s the society we are brought up in, everyone loves theme parks. Everyone enjoys the fun feeling that comes with it. In away theme parks are usually associated with letting loose and to some it goes as far as freedom. And as we grow up, some of us would love to be part of that society rather than being different.
Being a non-conformist, I therefore will have to bare the consequences of missing out some of the happiness that theme parks bring. 
I do however enjoy bumper cars 🙂 Just anything not scary basically. Haha.
True, you can throw me into the track doing stunts with a car or a muddy slope with an ATV, heck throw in some dangerous waves for white water rafting – I am scared to death about roller coasters (and horror rides). I’m totally cool being hit hundred of times with a paintball rifle but I can’t for the life of me bungee jump.
I did reverse bungee and paragliding tho 🙂
Indeed, I am a weirdo and I’m proud of it!
  
This ride caught my eyes for it’s very colourful ceiling 🙂 not brave enough to go on the ride.
TV Selangor also joined our crazy journey and recorded many events we weren’t sure if it’s a good thing for others to watch. Afzal makes half of TV Selangor, the other is Imran. They’re always there wherever we turned our heads 😛
I like to observe. Participating in this feels like my heart is being snatched with bare hand. Ouch. When the theme park closed at 7pm, we went to the top of the hill and took scenic photos of this wild resort. I don’t remember it being this colourful at first. I must have not been here for the longest time.
The schedule for the night was for us to meet up at The Pavilion by 8.45pm for the Dazzle show. It has the circus feel from outside looking in. In reality, it’s like an auditorium.. sort of.
There we were briefed regarding this VIP access we were given. Never before had they granted any special pass to guests for their shows yet we managed to get this one time only opportunity to take photos during the Dazzle show. At first we were allowed 15 minutes to snap but Mr. Philip then allowed us to take throughout the show except for a few shows like Statue of Jerome Murat, The Invincible Man & Hand Shadow. 
Apa lagi (Malay for what else)..we took our cameras and snap snap snap snap snap like there’s no tomorrow.
What’s Dazzle! about? It’s a 60 minute show with several different segments to entertain us including the Statue of Jerome Murat from France, award-winning magician Ernesto Planas, Sonny Fontana the hand shadow master and Duo Presto, the quick change illusion act. We were given front row seats and Spectre, who sat beside me was picked by Ernesto to take part in his magic show. Hehe, dude looked clueless but everyone had fun! 


When we had to sit in front, my heart was beating so fast, it felt like it was about to jump out of my body because I knew one of us will be invited to be part of the show. As much as I love the unknown, I am just as nervous about it. 

All this could not have been possible if it weren’t for Resorts World Genting support as well as Tourism Selangor, MySelangorStory and Amelia. 


We even got the chance to meet Charles Gluck who was the mime behind Statue of Jerome Murat, even if it were for a brief moment. French really trademarked the art of miming.

After full day of doing all kinds of activities, we finally head back to our own rooms. You read that right. All 26 of us were given individual rooms to stay. Madness!
Excuse the mess in the photo below but among the many hotels I’ve stayed, this is one room I really felt like home. Maybe it’s the warm lit room, perhaps the mustard colour featured wall (which many pointed out when they visited my room). I dunno. All I know was that, I was really really reaaaalllllly enjoying this room all to myself. It’s cooler with the view of the theme park outside too. And all this for free. Oh wow.


Even Sheepy loved it 😛

So how shall I sum my day in Genting? Only one photo can speak for me.


🙂 That’s it folks. That’s Day 2 Part 2. If you like this post, head over to MySelangorStory and vote it. 

What could possibly be better than this on our Day 3? That’s for me to know and for all of you to find out!