Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Impression on Batam, Indonesia

After my week-long training in Singapore. I decided to take a short holiday by going to Batam.

My god, what can I say about this choatic place. In my opinion, if PAS were to rule Malaysia like how BN does now, Malaysia will look like Batam. And that is the subtle way to say it, rather than with a racist tone here.

Before going to Batam, we read about it through the internet that the Holiday Inn, hotel we stayed in is located at the Waterfront City. Waterfront city, in my opinion that it must be at least half as beautiful as the Harbour Front (Formerly Singapore PWTC). But what greeted us when we came out from the Ferry were too many sorry sights around.

In fact, the whole island is full with a lot of half-bake projects. Roads that were fully build only one direction, walk way that was not complete with canopy, too many abandon buildings, cleared lands that were never use to build, lights not working. Pot holes! If you think Malaysia is bad, wait till you come to here!!! There are just too many pot holes around.

If any Malaysian would complaint about how our Government works, coming to Batam might help relieve the bitterness, at least for a short term basis. Then again, that will not help I think. That is because we then will arrive at the ultra efficient Singapore first, then go back to the rather-sloppy-but-not-so-bad Malaysia. Kinda like a overhang there.

In general, this whole place is frequented by Singaporeans that seek a short weekend getaway. And when they are here, they rarely go out. After all, the Holiday Inn is a rather nice place to spend holiday at, food not so expensive, loads of facilities too. If anyone seek to go out, then prepare to pay loads on the taxi fare. For a short 10 min ride, that could cost you from RM4 to RM12. Mind you, the traffic is just as scary as well, though the driver always escape swiftly.

But the people around here are not native as well. The masseur was from Bandung, our taxi driver was from Jakarta, while the other one was from Jawa. To sum it up, this whole place are full of foreigners from elsewhere, and everyone has their own intention to be at this one weird island. I guess life as a whole in Indonesia must be rather difficult. All I see is everyone just wants our money. Too many taxis trying to get us into their car. Too many strangers walking at the traffic light junctions trying to sell us something. In fact, there was this guitar player started knocking on my window demanding for a tip!

There is no sense of exotic in this small town, you know, like how it feel mysteriously when you go to Thailand. The indonesians here doesn't welcome you warmly when they see you. I feel very insecure when I see those youth just hang around there chatting while lurking for prey. Yes, they can be dangerous it seems. One chinese girl that sold me DVD told me I should avoid taking these taxis going anywhere too far. She also mentioned that should avoid going out too late too. That's okay, this whole place is closed not even near 8pm!

Plus the fact that, the Indonesian girls are just not as sweet as the Thai women. They are very rough. I can see that when she rub me so hard at the message, like how the woman would rub her clothes at the washing board!

I think I will not come to this place so soon, not at least another 10 years or so.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Scoopz Ice Cream

I went for training for the whole last week in Singapore. One of the night, I went to the Parkway Parade in Marine Parade for dinner and found this delightful ice cream shop at the lower ground floor -- Scoopz.

It is not a franchise, and they made all their ice cream by hand. There is but little sugar but loaded with loads of real fruits within the ice cream. What they did is that they blended the cream and fruits together first, and there is this cold pan that they laid the cream mixture on it. After that, they just continue to stirr and turn until the ice cream set.

I can tell you, it is a great ice cream, and might be better than Baskin Robin or Haagendaaz that you prize at. My favourite flavour is the Durian, as well as Avocado. The avocado is mild but pleasantly flavoured, and Durian can taste the bits and pieces of it.

After eating few times from there. I thought myself: Says who that you can't get a piece of share out of a already competitive ice cream market? With the correct formulation, and great innovative ideas, there will always be chance for any person. In fact, I think that this rule applies to many other area in our life too. When we complaint that there is not opportunity in work, or chance in life, we should ask ourselve if we have give a thought on making ourselves becoming a better person.

To learn more about scoopz, you can read from here: