Thursday, May 17, 2012

Rolling off a New Chapter from Singapore - Day 4 of 6

Day 4: Melaka to Seremban on 17 May (90km)

Weather was kinder yesterday... "cooling throughout the day"... according to Tina, I think it's a superlative term, it's comparatively much cooler than the previous 3 days :D

Like in the previous days, I appreciated the work done by the escorts - the policemen and the Ronda Riadah cyclists. The big police truck that ferried our bicycles for cyclists who were tired and needed a rest. The policement and volunteers helped to load the bikes up and down as and when necessary.

Police car, motorbikes and MPV helped to 'open the way' for the cyclists, and they also stopped the traffic at junctions so that all cyclists and support vehicles can cross safely. It's really a lot of hard work and 'dangerous' for the police on motorbike who had to stop his bike, get down from it stop the traffic at each traffic junction. Hip hip hurray to the heroes!

We visited a Primary school, Sekolah Kembangsaan Melakah... the kids there are different from those we see in Singapore... they are so excited to see us and are so loving and obedient. All the kids and staff joined in the dance as the cyclists and supporters performed... you can see the light sparkling in their eyes as they watched with awe when the cyclists arrive in their bikes.

... to be continued

SK reporting from Seri Malaysia Hotel in Seremban

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Rolling off a New Chapter from Singapore - Day 3 of 6

Day 3: Batu Pahat to Melaka on 16 May (115km)
It's a long long trip... about 120km (not from Sg, but from our set off point in Batu Pahat! Weather was as scotching but it's better than if it were rainy :D

One police cyclist fell twice

The team spirit continued to be high. The supporters topped up drinks and bananas and distributed meusli bars to the riders. And to add icing to the cake, we massaged the cyclists and prepared icy cold towels for them... the latter were grateful and encouraged!

Joan, our JB volunteer prepared dinner for us in her apartment next to the hotel we put up at... she even specially installed an additional aircon so that we could eat comfortably at her place! The food was super nutricious and delicious... fish maw with so much gelatin, 猪脚醋, steamed fish, kampung chicken, potato, vege ... I advised her to prepare 4 chickens but there were so much other food, we couldn't finish them :( Felt sorry for Joan and her helpers who worked so hard for us. We did not forget our Ronda Riadah and police friends, Joan had helped to order halal food which included satay and others and I heard the food were delicious too :D
The team split up in 2 (not because we quarreled)... half the team went on the coach and proceeded to Melaka directly... to rest and relax with shopping therapy. The other half of the team continued, hoping to achieve their dream to cover as much distance as they could :D Both groups were happy :D
Another tiring but fulfilling day :D

SK reporting from Hotel Pantai Puteri

Rolling off a New Chapter from Singapore - Day 2 of 6

Day 2 Pontian to Batu Pahat (75km)

We stayed in The Katerina Hotel
Was too tired to report on 15 May 12, Tuesday.

My memory is short, I'll try to recollect what happened on Tue... overall, the trip continued to be safe and good. Thanks to the 'ONE' who made it this way :D

We were greeted by some people along the way, they waved and encouraged the cyclists.
Our trip was reported on several newspaper and when I tried to buy copies for the team from a small shop, the owner said he read the paper and heard about us. I said I wanted 40 copies of the papers, it only had 10 and he even "gave up" the copy he was reading to me! haha :D

Along the way, we also topped up mineral water, ice and bananas. Had our lunch at one of the coffee shops we found... the owners were very happy as we boosted their economy :D The lady owner at the coffeeshop thanked me and said that business was bad for the day and we helped :D

The cyclists continued to be "steady poon pee pee"... and to encourage them, I opened my "golden voicebox" and sang to them as the recovery vehicle I'm in passed them... I noticed that each time I sang to them, they became energised and rode faster but someone in the vehicle observed that they sped ahead... to escape from my singing... hahaha! :D Well, looking at it positively, they moved faster :D

The Sultan of Johor stayed with us!... in the same hotel...
The manager whom we met during our recce trip resigned and there seemed to be some miscommunication and we nearly had problem with parking the bikes in a room that is safe. Thanks the the Security Chief, he helped.

Breakfast on Wed at the hotel was good :D

It rained in the night and thank god it stopped before dawn and the road is dry by the time we were setting off :D
SK 'reporting' from Melaka on Wed

Rolling off a New Chapter from Singapore - Day 1 of 6

Day 1: 15 May 12 - CCS Bukit Batok to Pontian (76km)

Greetings from Pontian, selamat pagi! :D Woke up cos it was too cold with aircond and too warm after turning that off, hence decided to find out from hotel staff on how to access the wifi here ;)

Just to share, we have a group of 23 cyclists, 9 from Taiwan and 14 from Sg and about 21 supporters (some join for some days). We are at Pontian now, going Batu Pahat, Melaka, Seremban and Putrajaya and then to KL by coach on 19 May (Sat) and CEO and Mimi are with us too :D

A bit of hiccups in the morning (1 cyclist left her passport with a supporter on the coach, 2 vomited between the 2 customs), but overall, the operation was relatively smooth albeit a little tiring for some. We had support from Ronda Riadah Club (a cycling club in JB) and JB police, escorting the team for the whole journey with MPV, a van, a big truck and several cyclists! They are excellent.

We visited an Islamic orphanage in Pontian in theafternoon. The session was awesome. The kids were joyfully dancing with our elderly cyclists and supporters! We even had live phone audio broadcast to the staff in the office for them to feel the atmosphere :D

Maybe it's because of the hot weather, there are people who are 'hot' here too. I'm usually hot tempered, but thanks to Faith who had kept encouraging, reminding, ‘nagging’ me to keep my cool and yes, I did it for Day1, haha, it’s a wonderful experience… I’ll be a ‘saint’ if I can stay this way throughout the 6 days since it's summer time here in Malaysia ;), hahaha :D

Counting the blessings, everyone is putting in their heart and soul to make the trip a smooth and safe one :D

Thanks to all who helped, supported and prayed for the team! Gonna rest now for the day ahead :D

Best regards,
Siew Kheng, ‘reporting’ from Hotel Pontian :D