'Weathering' Sponges for ICW Event

Just a last minute thought as presents for the lucky few who are attending ICW's private Chrstimas and New Year Gathering before registration closed. This time, we get to see Andy Wong's Spider-0, which won the GBWC 2014 in Japan, making him the World Champion, a first for Malaysia.

While we were shopping for ingredients to make the fruit salad, I came across some nice sponges which can help with the weathering on scale models and so, I bought enough to make for about 27.

Taking them out and packing them is not that easy but because we had gone through this before, it was a breeze. Many years ago, when it came to Kaelynn's Birthday at her Kindergarten, we packed Gift bags for her classmates. What we did was to line up all the goodies in a row, with each person walking past them, taking and putting an item into the Gift bag. The preparation was a chore but in the end, not only was it fun, but it was much more efficient than sitting on a table and packing them bags one by one.

What I taught them was a basic production line which not only improves efficiency and eliminates error very quickly, it also (hopefully) allows them to think out of the box.

Unfortunately at this stage, I have yet to teach them on QC...

Wooden Boxes on Christmas Eve

A few days ago, I noticed that the Wine Shop near the office has put up a notice saying they're selling Wind boxes. When I peered in, there was already a very stout Gentleman going through the boxes.

Today, I decided to get one for myself but things quickly changed as I encountered a very beautiful girl...

Me: Hi, I am interested in these boxes. Are they suitable for my daughters?
She: Sure. But what would be be using them for?
Me: Oh, the usual, guns, knives, bombs and grenades
She: Ah, these boxes are OK, then. Let me show you some of them...

And yes, that was what happened. I said that with a straight face and she did not even bat an eyelid. In the end, she showed me the better ones which are actually at the bottom of the pile. And every now and them, when the Wines are sold, the boxes would then be put up for sale. So, this means I can get one for myself later on. For RM35.00 each, I guess I can live with that.

What was so nice was the beautiful burnt-in designs and artwork on the boxes. On the left, was a special one which has a hinge and a clasp while the one on the right was well, OK-ish.

Man, the smell of these wooden boxes really wants to make me do something Artistic as they reminds me of freshly sharpened pencils.

When I took it home, I told the girls the boxes are for them and before I could say anything else, Kaelynn rushed over and picked the one with the hinges. Yep, she's putting all her favourite things in there right now.

10122014 My First Drive into Singapore!

Well, it finally happened.
My dream (or nightmare) to actually drive in Singapore has finally happened. Whenever I needed to go down to Singapore, it was either the Bus, Rail or Flights but never with my own Bengmobile. There is always this fear that I would be driving down there, lost, and turning in circles while making sure I did not commit any traffic offense with the undercover Police tracking me.

And so, with my new job, and due to some circumstances, I am one of the only two staff remaining who has a valid Passport and a valid GDL License to help in an installation. At first, it was exciting for me not because I can go to Singapore again, but to actually install a System in Singapore. Yep, this will be another first for me.

At first, the plan was to just get to Singapore but in the end, it ended up with me having to use my own car since the Company Vehicle has some complications. So, with me using my Vee-Chai, it would be dangerous since the car would be full of stuff plus two short ladders. Then, my lovely Wife called up and said she had her car serviced so that I could drive it down!

Yeah, this was a big surprise to me. But to be honest, its more of a shock since I never expected this!

My Wife had her car serviced the day before so that I can use it to drive down to Singapore along with the company's tools and equipment.

1300: Reached the Johor Customs Checkpoint. Its just a matter of showing our passports and have RM6.80 deducted from my Touch n Go card.

1302: We're halfway across the Causeway and in my Wife's car!

1302: OK, so I got excited

1303: There is a Jam on the Causeway, maybe because its Lunch hour...

1307: But no, its the Lorry on the right which broke down

1323: This is the nervous and time consuming part. We had to get our Passports examined and fill the white Embarkation card. All the lanes had long queues. Because we had no Entrypass cards, we had to get them at the appropriate VEP/Toll Office.

1335: And so, on to the RED Lane we go since this is also the same lane to the VEP/Toll Office

1344: So, this Mr. Chow took down Mr. Chow's particulars to register for the EntryPass card, which would be 'locked' to my Wife's car. The EntryPass costs $10.00, with a $4.00 value. Once you pass through the Checkpoint, $3.20 would be deducted and you need to top-up before you leave Singapore. Or else.

1413: Hello, Singapore!

1446: Stargek. So close yet so far and our destination is just about 2.4Km away...
However, just to get where we needed to be, I had to rely on my Nokia n8's Nokia Maps. Its not too bad but we did miss two turns and had to take some U-turns since I was a little too paranoid about causing an accident.

1504: Had to wait for the owner to open the door

1514: Work begins.

1547: More contractors arrive, but none with curly hairs and yellow boots...

1600: Watching this Master at work. He got all 5 holes opened up within 30 minutes.

1602: And and this is my work...

1923: Now, let's get those cameras up!

1942: This dinner is basically almost the same thing we had for lunch.

2104: All done!

2104: I love how the speaker looks and this is not your normal speeky speaky but a higher class

2135: Alas, no power so this means a possible trip in the near future!

2241: Time to head home but first, lets top-up the EntryPass card

2224: This was the earlier picture. Yeah, we missed the Entrypass Top-up point.

2333: After some false starts, we got the EntryPass card loaded with $30.00

2357: Goodbye, Singapore!

0120: Yeah, its a long night and my passenger decided to sleep instead of yakking with me

0211: One of the rest stop's toilet decoration




0224: Yum-yum! Curry Mee!

0225: Scratch that. Tastes like ****
Just hope I did not sure any diarrhea on the remaining journey...

0417: So sleepyzzzz......
Nearly went to the sides and middle of the road more than 10 times.
Must be getting too old for this

0439: Finally! We're back!

My First Big Bad Wolf Book Sale!

Well, I, or rather, we, finally did it! Our very first BBW Book sale visit at the Mines International Exhibition Convention Centre (aka MIECC)!

I wanted to go ever since I have heard of it more than a decade ago but, it was always the case of having to go there alone in the end. And so, given the choice of a book sale and the warm inviting lure of the Forums, you guessed the path I had taken.

We dreaded going there since it was a weekend and this means a lot of people and no place to park. To play it safe, we chose a Sunday evening in the hopes that there would be less people. Boy, looking at the long line of traffic queuing up, I was already not very enthusiastic about the whole thing.

Then... after paying for the ticket, and despite the Basement parking being full, we found out that there were some good parking spots! After having cleared the main hurdle, we continued with our plan, which is to have Dinner before going in...

Here is their Webpage for the full info:

At the Mines Food Court for a fast dinner since most of the fast food joints are quite packed. Surprisingly, this RM4.80 Ice Kacang Special was quite nice but the girls did not go for it despite the big strawberry ice-cream.

They loved their bento sets so much, Kristine kept stealing Kaelynn's food

I regretted getting this Curry Mee and should have chosen the Assam Laksa. There were a lot of cockles which I don't eat but overall, the curry was not to my taste.

Here we go! And know this, the BBW is a 24-hour event and its from 5th to 16th December.

Yeah, still not used to selfies. In the background, there are a lot of people!

After that selfie, I was faced with a table-full of modeling magazines!

When I turned around, it was the Graphic Novels! Whoa!

Some Graphic Novel titles I did not know existed

Iron Man stuff... yeah, money is the problem.

Underneath the escalator, was an empty space which a lot of people took the opportunity to reflect and think what other books they need. There are so many books, the longer you stay in there, the more you really want to buy! However, I have yet to see any LEGO related books and a decent Star Wars or Star Trek technical/cutaways.

OK, this young chap was checking everyone's bags when they want to go up. I think the books have to be bought for or they cannot be brought up. I wonder what was so special. So, I left my Wolverine graphic Novel 'hidden' on the table (upper) and went up the escalator...

Immediately on the left, was a carnival of sorts with a lot of targeting games, which I think was for book-worms to relieve their stress of not getting the books they wanted.

And on the right... what the...
It like a street lined with food! Had we known that there was stuff to eat we would not have bothered to enter the Food Court.

The prices are quite reasonable too, methinks. Not like the 'proper' Cafeteria which would charge more. I was tempted to get this 'sotong' or squid but knowing I would be stopped at the escalator since oily fingers are a no no.

There were stall such as KFC, A&W plus other fast food joints but nope, no MacDonalds.

Kaelynn loves sushi but with such small stalls, you would wonder how they were prepared. Still I am sure there was a Sushi King at Mines and they could have been brought over.

Sexy bikes on sale

BBW T-Shirt
Since I am not a hard-core fan yet, this is a luxury.

If they have a reclining version, I am sold!

The Mother of all Books for Star Wars fans

Once you get used to it, you just need to look at the 'Category' signs placed on each table to look for the books you're interested in. And so, try as I might, there was no 'LEGO', 'Star Wars' or even 'Star Trek' tables. I had to search almost everywhere since there were some friends asking for me to help them look for specific titles since they could not come.

When I first came in, I was bewildered with everyone carrying carton boxes and trolly-ed bags. And after having gone through BBW, I now know why. These seasoned peeps knows that walking around with heavy books are no fun and not only that, open boxes, if left unattended, will have missing books which will take you a long time to hunt for another copy if you're unlucky. That happened to me when I came down the escalator only to find my Wolverine missing and in the carton box of a 10-year old girl.... :O

There were lots and lots of books, which the staff periodically refreshed on the tables.

Yep, this is where all the empty boxes end up and of your empty one is not with you even for 10 seconds, it can end up here pretty fast.

Convenience for customers where you can store your loot at the racks (so that you can go get more)

Finally, around 11-ish, I found the rest of the family and yeah, this is out haul. Wife showed me the titles Kristine picked and they're the types I would go for. (Those Why and Literal jokes)

Overall, the staff helping out were actually students on holiday. Here, this very tall girl helped us with out books and checked out at the counter.

No receipt, no go.
A lot of people had to show their proof of purchase, plus open up their bags/plastic bags for them to be checked. Kristine and I had to wait for Mommy with the receipt since she had to go back in to the Hong Leong booth for the free bag and to get my Dad. With the Hong Leong card, you get not only 5% discount but a free bag over RM150 in a recepit (IN A SINGLE DAY PURCHASE). Since our was more than RM300.00 we could not get the second bag.

All Mine! Thanks to Mr. Visa

The girls were very excited to start reading their treasures but I had to make sure they took their bath and brushed their teeth first. Kaelynn really loved to read.

Kristine on the other hand, decided to customise her Diary and Notebooks first.
And so, there you have it, the BBW2014.
And I hope to finish all the books I have gotten before the next BBW, which is in 2015.