Running for A Cause: SCS-TalkMed Relay for Life 2019

I’ve been participating in quite a few running events over the past few years, but never had I been part of a relay team. I didn’t expect running in a relay would be so much fun.

On the night 2 days before Christmas, I was strolling through my Facebook feed (what’s new), that I came across this post on Relay For Life. Organised by the Singapore Cancer Society since 2017, the event aims to raise awareness, change behaviours, and take actions and to raise fund for the fight for cancer. Something strikes me that I have to rally my Fitspo People kaki to take part in this relay.

It was around the same period when I experience how much of a devil cancer is. The heartless illness takes the dearest ones away from people. One of my aunts was a victim of cancer, she succumbed to the illness some decade and a half ago. Back then, I was still a little kid, all I knew was that the person who took care of me during my parents’ absence and the one who took me out to gaigai was no longer there in my life anymore. I remembered how much I couldn’t handle the news of her passing. It wasn’t easy for anyone to handle such news, let alone a 7-year-old kid. In the recent year, I have also seen how my close friends have to undergo the ordeal of losing their loved ones to cancer. It was so heartbreaking. I knew I need to do something for these people.

I took the chance to rally FPAC for this beneficial cause, and we managed to send in 9 participants to take up the 100km team challenge.

THE EXPERIENCE

On 2 March, we arrived at the National Stadium getting ready to start the relay. Farhan was our first runner. He just kept running until he was tired before our new member, Zongwei, took over. I was prepping myself to cover at least 20km during the ungodly hours so did not start until after midnight.

STARTING RIGHT: Farhan (right) covered a good >20 laps before he left us for his school project.
NEW FACE: Zongwei is the new member that joined us for this run and we hit off quite instantly!
KEEPING THE MOMENTUM GOING: Hui Shuen passing the baton to our co-captain Justin.
GOING STRONG: Viv, who’s our other co-captain, keeping the smile on her face despite how tiring the race was.
HERE YOU GO: Yapz (centre) taking over the baton from Viv as Hui Shuen (left) looks on.
SMILE ON: Our other new member, Kheng Yin, posing for photo while running past us.
NEVER SAY NEVER: Kish showing the victory sign as he speed past us!
CAPTURING THE MOMENT: My official unpaid & underrated (oops) PA helping me to capture all the moments from the race on tape.

Speaking about the vlog for this race, I wasn’t feeling well the past week so I didn’t have the chance to actually edit the vlog. But I assure that the vlog will be done up quite soon, so maybe by next weekend, we will be able to see the actual footage on what went on during the course of 12 hours.

TIME FOR SELFIE: I don’t usually take selfies like this but it’s a good occasion to do so!
TOGETHER-NESS: Really thankful for all of them for taking their time out to run for a good cause.

It could have been a gruelling 12 hours and it could have been impossible to complete the 250 laps around the track without the effort of every single one of our Fitspo People. It was them that made this race a fun one and pushes me to go on to complete my 50th round. It was the team effort that shouldn’t be undermine.

We eventually came in 161th by distance and 155th by the timing to complete 100km. Really really proud of our results.

COUPLES THAT RUNS TOGETHER, COMPLETE TOGETHER: Yapz and Kish showing off their finisher tee!
WE ARE 100KM FINISHERS: The FPAC fam posing with our finisher tees. We did it!

THE THOUGHTS

During the entire event, running wasn’t in my mind at all. I had a lot of thoughts, thoughts surrounding the endless cycle of life and death. Maybe it was because of what I kind of encounter over the past few months that I was especially emotional when I went to cover the sharing session and reading all the dedications that the participants penned on the luminaria bags.

It just hit me so hard that despite living things are made up of group of cells, yet an abnormal growth of the matter that build us ended up killing us slowly and cruelly. Images of patients last moments before the illness took the toll on them flashed across my minds, even as I was doing my laps.

I hasn’t been running long distance since my CNY run and I was feeling the ache in my tights as I increased my speed during the course of the relay. However, I told myself, what cancer victims are going/went through was much worse. I know I couldn’t do comparisons like that, but you know the point that I am trying to bring across right here. I admire their perseverance and their fighting spirit — the will to overcome their illness against all odds. Maybe Augustus Waters (of The Fault in Our Stars) was right, cancer (or any types of illness) could be that unlighted cigarette in the mouth, “cigarettes only kill when you light them… you put that killing thing right between your teeth, but you don’t give it the power to do its killing.” That was the kind of fighting spirit that somehow becomes a common trait across all the cancer patients.

In the words of Terry Fox, the renowned for his Marathon of Hope to raise money and awareness for cancer, once said, which I find it the most applicable to me at this point in time, “It took cancer to realise that being self-centered is not the way to live. The answer is to try and help others.” I always run races for the sake of bettering my records, but never had I realised that charity runs served a greater communal benefit. Personal glory seems so irrelevant when just a pair of legs and a little perseverance and rallying can change the lives of people, people whom may or may not be close to you but after all, human beings. I didn’t expect I would be running for something bigger.

This will not be the last time I am participating in a run for charitable causes. I am going to embark on more of such runs. I might really do a cross-country (like literally across the island) fundraiser, some sort of a scaled-down version of Marathon of Hope, to raise fund for cancer and maybe other illnesses like asthma (which I am a sufferer of), Alzheimer’s and geriatrics. I will leave to after my ORD to plan for these. I just hope that with that so little I could do in my capacity, I would be able to be of some help to these communities.

MOMENT OF SILENCE: A sign of respect and to remember those who’ve fought cancer.
MAY YOU SEE OUR MESSAGES: To those warriors who battled the demon with their lives, can you see our well wishes lighted up so brightly in the night skies?
PUTTING SOME THOUGHTS: Yapz, Kish and Khengs penning their thoughts and well-wishes.
BE STRONG, STAY STRONG: All the heartfelt messages by the participants.

THE GOOD

Putting all emotions aside, I guess it’s important that we give feedbacks on the planning and execution of any race. I find writing a short review for races as some form of appreciation to the organisers for their sweat, tears and sacrifices.

Overall, this race is very well organised so kudos to the Singapore Cancer Society (SCS). Growing from its inaugural relay back in 2017 at Bukit Gombak, the race grew in size and moved to the National Stadium for its second edition. 2019 saw RFL breaking the record for the longest distance (14, 849.2km) covered by a group of runners in 6hrs. Furthermore, SCS also managed to raise a total of S$1 million, a significant amount more than the S$380,000 raised last year. RFL indeed has went from strength to strength.

1. The Remember Segment

I know this is a custom throughout all the RFL across the world but I find it very meaningful that all of us could take a moment out to remember those who fought so bravely against the illness and to give support to their families. There is really very little thing we could do for those actually feeling the pain. Some people felt the pain in the wounds, others in the heart.

Furthermore, the sharing sessions by cancer patients and their family members gave many insights on how it is to fight to illness as an individual and as a family. I could have sat in front of the stage to listen to the stories but I guess there will be better time in the future when my emotions do not get in the way.

2. Side activities to keep participants motivated

There were zumba and I could remember Henry (radio DJ from 933) being forced to dance as well. That was some light hearted moment during that evening. I recall how I could still hear the music from the zumba or some fitness dance while I was during my laps. It does really keep the participants going especially when most of us are feeling the tiredness kicking in later that night.

THE BAD

Of course, despite all the positivities, there are the bad points I personally feel that it requires some highlight.

1. Open more lanes for running

The whole point for opening up the 3 lanes are for competitive runners (i.e. those who are taking part in the 100km Challenges) to have an ‘express’ route to complete their runs. I know this is just a charity relay but we have to consider that there are fast runners that are chiong-ing round the track like there were racing for glory in an Olympics final. I can’t blame them because that might be the speed they are comfortable in — especially when they are seasoned athletes. On the other hand, there are runners who runs at a slower pace on the track.

With only 3 lanes opened, 294 individuals (there were 294 teams/individuals taking part in the 100km Challenge) on the track with all travelling at different paces, it seems like a recipe for an accident waiting to happen. I remembered when I slowed down to some 7:30 pace, I met this guy who was running at high speed, brushed past me and many other participants. We were so close to crashing into one another, and I ain’t going to think of the domino effect that could have happen had both of us fell. The lanes were just too narrow given the number of expected participants on the track at any moment. 2 more lanes could have been added to better manage the crowd, and for safety reasons too.

2. Track Etiquette

This is less of the fault of the organisers but they could have did a little more to manage the runners and walkers. As much as we want to be inclusive, we need to cater to the safety of every participants. Like I pointed out in the point above, having speed demons rushing through the crowd and increase the probability of toppling over others is a safety concern. Slower runners like myself ought to keep right, leaving the left-most lane for faster runners. Respect the lanes and it will make things easier for everyone.

Furthermore, as one of my team mates pointed out, people with large costumes might poised a threat to the runners, given the props they might be carrying with them. Hence, we would like to suggest that walkers and people dressed up in large costumes ought to be directed to the other lanes that was initially designated for non-competitive runners and casual walkers. Just to be safe, really. 🙂

Above all, it was a pleasing, fun and fulfilling night running with my fam for this good cause. It triggers a lot of thoughts and definitely changes the way I look at running and races as a whole. It added another mission to my life that is to be that good catalyst to people’s life, no matter how small the changes for the better might be.

Review: Sundown Marathon 2018 (Half-Marathon)

One week ago, I was getting myself geared up for my second race this year. I didn’t have much expectation this year after the poor organisation last year. Despite that, I joined out of habit. I mean it’ll be weird if I don’t take part in the night race that I’ve been a part of since 2016. There ain’t many night race here in Singapore to begin with.

However, by the time I concluded the race, I knew that Sundown is so much better than the one last year.

Race Entry Pack Collection

Race Entry Pack Collection (REPC) might only be an occasion organised for participants to collect their bibs and tags, as well as to get their hands on to some goodies put together by the sponsors. However, to me, the REPC serves as an indication of how well the entire race would be organised. You know, the first impression counts.

Compared to the chaos of last year’s, this year the organiser has made some major adjustments. First, the collection point is no longer at an open area, they brought it indoors. I could still remember how we were forced to queue under the sun at F1 Pit last year while wondering how long more would it take before our turn. This year, they broke the collection into two parts. Participants collect their bibs from outside Suntec City before going to the mall to grab the race singlet and the goodie bags.

It was surprisingly fast. The entire process took less than 15 minutes. The queue was cleared quickly before it became a long-winding snake. To make it more impressive, I was there on a Friday evening.

After I collected my goodie bag, I thought to myself: This year’s Sundown is going to be a whole new experience.

The Lead-Up & Trainings

The organisers put in place 3 lead-up runs to prepare the runners for the race. These include 12KM/22KM, 14KM/27KM and 19KM/30KM over three weekends. I wasn’t able to join for the first two runs because of personal commitments, but glad that I was able to set aside some time for the last lead-up. I must admit I was rather excited to go for my first official lead-up run despite having to run the race since 2016.

TOGETHER WE TRAIN: Running with pacers from Team FatBird provides me with a whole new experience. (Image: Team FatBird)

It was during the evening of 21st April, slightly after the afternoon drizzle. Every participant made their way to the OCBC Arena and everyone was feeling energised. I wasn’t that sure if I was ready for a 19km because I hasn’t been training that frequently compared to the race last year. But well… Since I was there, might as well give it my all. I mean, the race was due to flag off in another few weeks times. There was no better time than that.

I remembered I started well, even going on par with the pacer for the 30KM run (that’s for the Full Marathon runners). For a good 5km, I was ahead of everyone. Then slowly, I fell back and by the time I went for my toilet break at around 6km, I lost the sight of the running contingent. I eventually just OTOT all the way to East Coast Lagoon Food Centre before heading back to OCBC Arena.

It was a good run. The hydration points along the route served as an extra motivation for me to complete my training. The 19KM runners were entitled to a hydration point along the route somewhere around Parkland Green. It gave me an opportunity to hydrate myself and take a breather after trying to outpace a girl who appears to have an optimal running economy. I went on to try and outpace two fit uncles after the break. Well, I guess running with a group does have its perks.

Sleep Can Wait

The big night is here! Like I’ve said previously, I expected this year’s race to be a whole new experience. I am not far from the fact before I reached the race venue. For the first time in my three years of participation in Sundown, I was on the verge of running alone. It was not until when Charmaine told me that she was also running.

We met up at Promenade MRT at around 2230 before making our way to the 7-11 at Marina Square so that our little one can get her fuel. We slowly walked to the race village where the containers of last year were replaced by tentage, freeing up so much space for the large crowd to enter and even take group photos.

The organisers succumbed to the fact that fancy exhibition idea is not feasible under the constraint of spaces. They heard the complaints and made the amendments this year. Well done!

But there was one thing we suspected they might have screwed up. The pen allocation. Charmz and I had no idea why we were being allocated to Pen A, if the pen was supposedly for participants who were able to complete the course within 2 hours. Although I was running with my Adidas Sub-2, that doesn’t equate to the fact that I was able to run my race in 2 hours – especially not when I didn’t have enough proper trainings leading up to the big night.

Even if they screwed up our pen allocations, it was a beautiful one. We were entitled to a rather spacious starting pen and since we were being thrown to the front, ahead of the masses, we were given a clear view of the starting point and all the entertainment that was happening. For the first time, we were able to join in for a warm-up session – conducted by TripleFit. After we stretched some muscles, we were ready for the flag-off.

It was a race that I personally would not be proud of. I’ve let down such a well-organised race. On the night that, despite not as fit as I was during last year’s edition, I was expecting to beat my previous records, I succumbed to my intestinal health. I spent at least half of the race going around looking for the washroom. It’s definitely not fun having the urge to go to the washroom during your run. It’s worse when you had to go twice.

It still bugs me why my stomach worked up every time during a long-distance. Charmz told me that it might because of me and my spicy diet. I had to agree. I couldn’t live a day without taking something spicy, even until race day. Look like I have to review my diet for my next race.

Given that we were thrown into the first pen, there was no obstacle for us. No roadblock, no bottleneck, everything was just as smooth. If I had been last year, I guess I’ll be able to speed past the first 5km below 28mins.

Talking about timing, I need to commend Sundown for having this phone app this year. The Sundown App allows whoever who are interested to track the performance of the runners. I basically use it to track myself and Charmz. It would give notification whenever the person you are following past the different milestone. The only downside to this app was that it didn’t manage to tag the correct photos of me. Oops.

You can clearly see the amount I spent at my second toilet break before the 19km mark. Terrible. I was still telling Charmz that my aim was to not go for any toilet break while we were at the starting pen. Ah well. No point crying over poor pre-race strategy.

2 hours and 51mins after we set out for the race, I finally crossed the finishing line. There were regrets for me, the stage was set but I didn’t perform. Disappointing, but thank God that I was finally done with the race.

Charmz was already waiting for my at the race village. She was sitting down doing her post-run stretch when I found her near our bag collection area. We lepaked on the pavement, cooled ourselves down and did some catching up.

While this marked the last paid-run for her, it will be a while before I take part in my next race – yes, I will not be taking part in this year’s Army Half Marathon.

Brighten the Day with A Better Florist Flowers

A lot of people think that flowers are just for girls and women. They’re wrong. Flowers can be appreciated regardless of gender, and they have the same effect on everyone.

 

via GIPHY

 

The first time I ever received a bouquet was during graduation. The sunflowers instantly boosted my mood and made the day extra special, especially since it came from some of my closest friends. Right then I thought about the powerful effect of flowers. They can heal, bring joy and inspire. I wasn’t a big flower giver, but after that event I became an instant fan.

One of my favourite florist and flower delivery in Singapore is A Better Florist (www.abetterflorist.com). I’ve tried a lot of different flower shops and florists listed as best florist in Singapore but I just keep coming back to A Better Florist for their affordable bouquets, fast flower delivery in Singapore and beautiful arrangements. They also have gift bundles apart from fresh flowers, so they’re convenient if you can’t think of a gift to give for birthdays and similar occasions.

So far I have ordered get well soon flowers from them, fruit basket delivery for my parents and a few other hampers in their online shop. They also have grand opening flowers, wreaths and hypoallergenic flowers for babies if you’re interested.

Though I have to say, I’m partial to sunflowers, so I often order The Ayla which is like a burst of sunshine. I love the burlap packaging of this bouquet because it just gives it a hip and trendy appeal. I’ve given it to friends and relatives, and they’ve all raved about the freshness and fragrance of the flowers. I got to say, one of the best things about A Better Florist is their lightning-fast flower delivery in Singapore. Within 90 minutes, your order goes from shop to doorstep! This is what makes them the best florist in Singapore.

The Ayla bouquet by A Better Florist
A Better Florist’s The Ayla is a burst of sunshine in a bouquet.

If that’s not impressive enough, they’re also offering Hong Kong flower delivery and Abu Dhabi and Dubai flower delivery. This early, they’ve already been named best flower delivery in Hong Kong, best florist in Hong Kong and best florist in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. ‘Nuff said.

Makan With A Lens: Brawn & Brains Coffee

Situated in a suburb just along the outskirts of town, a stone thrown away from the historical housing estate of Dakota Crescent, lies one of the most secluded cafes in Singapore.

Brawn & Brains

It took a while for Huiqi and I to locate the inconspicuous cafe. We walked through the Old Airport Road Market, the public housings along Pine Lane and Cassia Crescent before reaching coming face to face with a rather run down building facing Guillemard Road.

Walking into Brawn & Brains

Although the exterior is not fancy enough to attract any attention from anyone walking past the building, the interior is exquisite. The combination of white, black and brown gives the cafe a touch of minimalism, accentuating the feel of serenity.

Menu at Brawn & Brains

Although there are only 6 items available on the weekday menu (yes, we went there on a weekday), it took me a while before I could finally decide on what I wanted to eat that afternoon.

I like how they offer wheat toast because I prefer whole wheat or whole-grain bread over white bread or any kind of bread. More manganese (to build bones), more fibre and higher antioxidant content.

Eventually, I ordered a Smoked Salmon and Avocado on Whole Wheat Toast (15.50 SGD) and a cup of Long Black (4.80 SGD).

A cup of espresso from Brawn & BrainsSmoked Salmon and Avocado on Whole Wheat ToastOn the other hand, Huiqi ordered Grilled Chicken and Avocado on Whole Wheat Toast (14.90 SGD) and a cup of Iced Mocha (6.60 SGD).

Grilled Chicken and Avocado on Whole Wheat Toast

I like how they added in chips as a side which I could snack a little while chatting with Huiqi. The bread was a little crispy and the salmon was nicely done – just like how I wanted it to be done.

We took our time chatting about her life in the Home Team and what I’ve been doing so far. It was nice catching up after so long and with the sunlight shimmering through the large window panels in front of us.

Brawn & Brains Coffee

Address: 100 Guillemard Road, #01-02, Singapore 399718

Opening Hours: 0830 – 1800 (Tues – Fri); 0930 – 1800 (Weekends & Public Holidays); Closed on Mondays.

Damage: ~ 15-25 SGD

Will It Burger? (Singapore Edition)

In an effort to celebrate the upcoming National Day, fast-food restaurant McDonald’s have introduced a special menu that is inspired by local delicacies from today (July 13) onwards.

Here comes Nasi Lemak Burger.

LOCAL DELIGHTS: McDonald’s latest menu which includes Nasi Lemak Burger, Chendol McFlurry and Coconut Pie will be available from July 13. (Image: McDonald’s)

The McDonald’s version comes with a coconut-flavoured chicken thigh patty, fried egg, caramelised onions and cucumber slices topped with sambal sauce, and served between semolina buns.

Sounds like a nice combination.

I think there is a question in our mind on how well our local food blends with burgers. We’ve come across chilli crab burger and satay burger amongst the culinary fusion, yet the lack of hawker food burger-lisation got me thinking…

Will the other of our favourite local delights taste well if it’s served as a hamburger?

Check out the first pilot episode of The EC Show to find out!

Running After The Sunrise: Post 2XU Compression Run Reflection

Last Sunday, I participated in 2XU Compression Run 2016. I swear it has been so long since I had to woke up at 5am. I could remember vividly that that last time I’ve got to wake up so early was my last day at SRJC – the last time when I actually had to arrive at school before 0730hrs.

It was tiring to wake up so early, of course.

And to think that I had an over-filling steamboat dinner at 9PM the previous night. I think both of us regretted our decision a lot because we tend to take too much of food. We were like struggling to finish the last bits of food that’s floating inside the steamboat.

Steamboat with Junwei the night before

I learnt my lesson immediately after 1km on the road. Suffering from the ‘side effect’ of too much food in my stomach less than 12 hours before the race, it was not that pleasant. I took so much effort to tell myself to forget about the uneasiness and to keep going.

The sunrise seen from the shoreline near F1 Pit Building

I told myself I’m going to make sure that apart from waking up early to see the sunrise, I want to make this run count too. I cannot possibly give up half way. (Although I actually decided to walk for a good 500m-1km after every 2-3km)

Taken before the run while I was doing warm-ups because the lighting was good
Apparently I managed to run on a duration in less than 1h 30mins (according to nett time). I thought I was going to time my worst ever record because my stamina wasn’t at its optimum, no thanks to the steamboat I’ve eating the day before. HAHAHA Just blame everything on the steamboat HAHAHA Oops. Ok, on the bright side, at least I am not the last 😀
Official timing retrieved from 2XU Compression Run’s website
The 10km Finisher Medal

This is my first 10km finisher medal since the one I got in 2014 for Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon. But then, it looks like I’ve lots of training to be done in order to further improve my stamina and of course, my timing.

I am looking forward to my next race in May! YAY!

Think Fast Food Is Always Junk Food?

This will mark my last post of the year.
When we talk about fast food, the first thing that will arise in everyone’s mind would be that fast food are equivalent to junk food and many find it unhealthy to a certain extend that some will even reject the idea of having fast food for their meal, me alike. 
I’ve been trying to avoid fast food for the past one month because I don’t really like the idea of fast food.
But then, today, on the second last day of the year, we decided to try out a whole new kind of fast food. 
The Vegan kind.
For those who know me well enough, I am the kind of person who could not survive one meal without meat. I need at least a piece of meat before I can consider that I actually had a meal. (Ok, minus the days where I had to be vegetarian due to religious obligations) However, since the year is coming to an end, maybe I should try something new.
And since Peiyi was like craving for Vegan burger in the morning, we decided to head down there for dinner.
And I guess this will be the first time when Yoke can get to order anything in the menu of where we are eating since she’s a vegetarian.

VeganBurg is a so-called fast-food outlet whereby they serve vegan burgers and vegan food. It provides gluten-free and nut-free option, for those who are allergic to gluten or nuts.

Although it is located at a rather secluded corner along Jalan Eunos in eastern Singapore, in the middle of a pet shop and a Buddhist temple, it is not difficult to notice the existence of the rather big and round VeganBurg logo above the shop.
As we walked into the premises, I was awed by the aesthetically-pleasing modern interior design of the restaurant. Big glass door coupled with a nice combination of black, white and green. It was as though we’ve walked into some modern countryside eatery. 
Sir Paul McCartney’s favourite fast food joint, as they claim. 

Initially when I first saw the menu, I was rejecting to the fact that the burgers served contains nothing but vegetables, and more vegetables. I was like telling Peiyi and Yoke that I would “rather eat salad” because I thought there was no patty inside. However, looking at the menu closely when I was there, I realised every burger actually does contain patty, and it’s GMO-free soy patty.

We walked in to find ourselves a seat.

After doing much thinking, I’ve decided on ordering this Avocado Beetroot Burger. Why? Because I love avocado. 🙂

Notice that ‘Limited Edition’ label? HAHAHA

We’ve all went for a set meal instead of a la carte and there we go, three drinks to choose from.

I tried the seaweed fries first and as I took the first bite, I felt that I was in wonderland. The fries are perfect. The crisp was on point, and the inner part was rather mushy which made the entire feel felt so good. It was fried to a point where the exterior of the fries was crispy while the inside remains mashed potato. The combination of crisp and mash is like a combination made in heaven. I fell in love almost immediately.
The burger was another that’s worth talking about. It was made in the way that you won’t realise you are actually eating something that is vegan, it tasted like any other normal burger that you get from fast food joints out there. The GMO-free patty really does taste like meat, it looks like one too. So if you tried to buy burger for a friend or your children, you can pretend that it is some normal burger that contains meat. I was truly amazed on how they even managed to make it so similar. One word, marvellous.
The only thing that I need to complain, as usual since I complain a lot, is that the avocado was a little too little that I don’t really get to get hold of the taste of it. It’s almost non existent. Maybe I can suggest them to put a little more of avocado so that the taste would be there yet not strong enough to overpower the taste of the soy patty and other veggies.
Overall, the experience was great! Able to dine in such a comfortable setting with food that makes you feel healthy (of course, if you want to feel more healthier, you can opt for broccoli instead of fries).
Yup, like the broccoli you see above. (That’s Peiyi’s meal btw) 
Look how happy they are with their food. HAHAHA
VEGANBURG
44 Jalan Eunos
Singapore 419 502
Monday – Saturday and Public Holidays: 11:30AM – 10:00PM (last order at 9.45PM)
Sunday: 10:30AM – 10:00PM (last order at 9.45PM)

Phone: +65 6844 6868

(Since this is the last post of 2015, I hereby wishing everyone a Happy New Year and may 2016 be a good year, if not, better year for all!)

Very Belated Post: The Virgin Adventure at Universal Studios Singapore & The Roller Coaster Phobia

(This blog post has been hidden in my draft for the past few months and I guess it’s time to complete it. I tried to recall as much as I could so that this will become a memory to keep for decades to come.)
I’ve been missing for the past 5 months (Oops), so I think it’s time I should update this blog, with a blog post that supposed to be published five month earlier.
So… during the previous holiday (how I am looking forward to my next long holiday in August right now), I was entitled to 2 tickets to Universal Studios Singapore (USS) thanks to a Instagram competition organised by Ngee Ann Poly. We were supposed to write how we are going to spend my vacation…
And I wrote a freaking long post (no choice, maybe it’s a blogger thing. We tend to over write. Oops). And fortunately for me, my long post didn’t go to waste. I was declared one of the 6 winners (alongside Rebecca and Huiqi who also won the tickets — but turn out they got tickets to the other attractions instead) 
After a few days of anticipation, the mail arrived.

On the 4th of April, I jio-ed Rebecca to embark on this trip which I SWEAR I WILL NEVER FORGET.

Rebecca had went to USS for a few times (I supposed), so she’s my ‘tour guide’ for the day.

Apparently, someone *cough**cough* was late so I decided to wander about…

I could see USS from HarbourFront (duh)
And then had some coffee and did some reading.

Sometimes I really suspect what I’ve been doing for the entire of my lifetime, but coffee and books (of course, plus music) can easy satisfy me.
I barely read a few pages before Reb arrived and we were on the way to USS…
After she had her Subway breakfast. HAHAHAHA
I am just going to forego about the process of getting there and retrieving the tickets. I mean, that’s not the main point ya? Let’s fast forward to the moment I stepped foot on USS for the first time in my lifetime.
What greeted me was a like a scene right out of a fairy tale book. 
Yeah, something like that. I felt like a princess right at that instance. Okok, I know I am a guy, it doesn’t make sense for me to have those kind of fantasy. *swipes hair*
It really looks like the place I would want to live for the remainder of my life. Wandering around the palace 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year (Call me Prince Edward guys)
Let’s come back to reality. Reality is one something big to accept. WHO LIKES THE REALITY ANYWAY.
My imagination doesn’t survived that long before I was dragged to the nearest roller coaster ride. 
Welcome on board Enchanted Airways.
I took a deep breathe.
I remembered the last time I took a roller coaster ride, which was like approximately 7 years ago, I was shouting like how a normal person would shout if they were to know their boyfriends were actually some vampires (sorry, Belle).

My heart palpitated as I moved along the queue line. I was praying that the queue would jam forever. I stood there trying to compose myself before my spirit could even decide to leave my body because it was so afraid.

Enchanted Airways wasn’t enchanting at all.

It was our turn to take the ride. I swore it was one of the shortest 20minutes of my life (did we even queue 20minutes, that’s the main question, but whatever though). I refused to explain how my heart died a little inside.

Even before I could take a breather, there I was, sitting in one of the carriages beside the enthusiastically looking Tan Min Zhen. Someone please help me right now, I am running out of proper English adjective to describe how I freaking feel at that very moment.

Let me explain it with a legit metaphor. (If anyone reading this could even understand my point at all)

It’s like being send on board a truck which is on the way to Changi Beach for a massacre. That feeling of enviousness and loss.

And then it started moving.

IT MOVES.

EVEN BEFORE I EVEN ALLOW IT.

Being on the last carriage, I turned behind and saw the roller coaster in motion.

I guessed my heartbeat, if it were to be measured, would looked exactly like the roller coaster track. Up and down. I tried to keep my composure.

Sometimes I think I took life too seriously.

I closed my eyes the moment the roller coaster took its first turn.

I felt as if I was involved in an actual car accident rather than on a bloody plane.

The entire ride was a torture and it finally ended before I ran out of profanities to curse. I was so close to climb out of the seat in distress.

No, this was not the end of my excruciation.

We continued on in search for the next attraction. We were planning to alternate between some heart throbbing rides and mild rides. Despite that, I felt that the journey ahead would be mentally agonising.

The Puss-in-Boots’ Giant Journey ride was not yet open during April.

Along the way, we walked past a up-and-coming new attraction: The Puss-in-Boots’ Giant Journey ride. It was opened later on sometime in May 2015. Rebecca was overly excited over that new attraction. “Oh my God, I want to come here for this ride next time!”

This girl was definitely overly zealous. I squeezed out a faint smile.

The scenery in USS is rather picturesque. It was difficult for me not to be mesmerised by the surrounding.

We eventually head to the next ride, which I could still remember. It was an experience worse compared to the previous one.
Welcome to Canopy Flyer.

Just look at the amount of daredevils putting their lifes at stake trying the Canopy Flyer. Alright, I am just over-exaggerating.

The queue was long enough. It resembled the length of the queue outside a random Singapore Pools betting outlet near where I stay during Wednesday and weekends. In Singapore, we are so willingly to queue for anything and everything, including things that might put your life in extreme danger.

I wasn’t thinking too much about the ride I was about to experience. I was looking out at the Dino-Soarin’ rides which looked less intimidating. Of course, I am too old and over-sized for that.

We waited for close to an hour, I supposed (well, it felt like an hour no doubt). As we got nearer, I got a glimpse of the terror. This ride does not allow you to put your legs on something, in other words, your legs will be hanging in mid-air once it leaves the platform.
(Image: knowyourmeme)
I could remember exactly how aghast I was when I was seating on the ride. I tried to calm myself down.
I TRIED ALRIGHT.
As I sat beside the fanatical Reb, the expressions on our faces immediately became a visible contrast. 
I tried to hide my feelings but as the cabin started to move, I regretted placing my bums onto the seat. The moment it travelled out of the platform, the moment there was nothing whereby my legs could land on, I knew the shit was about to get real.
(Image: memegenerator)
(Image: weknowmeme)
As the ride took its first drastic turn, I felt like I would get thrown off the seat and land on some random part of USS. I took my prayers seriously this time, hoping I wouldn’t die because I took a roller coaster ride.
(Image: memecrunch)
Exactly. Although to be fair, I didn’t pay for it but I started to doubt the mentally of those who seems ever so willing to hop onto any roller coaster. I swear these people must be some sort of masochists. Of course, jokes aside, I really do admire those who have the courage to be so into such sort of torture. 
Probably I might build enough courage in my next life.
By the time the ride ended, I found myself suffering from the over-production of adrenaline. Or maybe not. I just felt dizzy and stunned, stunned to the extend that it took me a few minutes to regain my composure.
How I felt once I came out of the ride. (Image: mrwgif)
Rebecca was laughing at me, most likely at how weak I was and how retarded I look upon coming down from the ride. My leg was wobbly as shit and I couldn’t walk in a straight line while trying to retrieve my backpack that I placed on the shelves provided.
(Image: memegenerator)
I took me a while to eventually get over and recover from it.
And we continued our journey, things got better from this moment onwards because the other rides seems milder. 

I swear the displays within ‘Ancient Egypt‘ segment reminds me of one of my childhood movie: The Emperor’s New Groove. It felt like we’ve teleported back in time and immersed ourselves into the world of ancient Egypt.
No, no Mummy Ride (Revenge of the Mummy). Before I start shouting for mummy.

I counted myself lucky that this Battlestar Galatica ride wasn’t open when I visited the place. My heart would have died a little.

We continued towards the SciFi City. I swear the entire set-up here makes one feel like he/she is being trapped inside a faulty time machine. From Ancient Egypt to somewhere that seems to me like 500 years later. Damn, the advancement of civilisation.

We decided to queue for Transformers, the Ride: The Ultimate 3D Battle. While queueing, we were welcomed by the large array of displays which were laid out along the queue line. I like how ‘hi-tech’ all the displays are. I felt like I was on a mission.
Maybe I felt like a Transformer.
The ride was probably my favourite because…
Well, I can differentiate between what’s 3D and what’s literally off-the-ground. The transformer ride is basically on the ground, the only reason why you are feeling the height is due to the 3D goggle that you are wearing. It just felt like you are actually driving a sports car at full speed along the highway.
Because you crashed past the barrier at a random turn and down you go.
I remembered returning to have a second ride towards the end of the day.

What happened when I came face to face with muscle cars? Snap pictures of them like no tomorrow.

We took a break from all the rides and headed to the WaterWorld for some… water shows. That crowd though.

I swear the speaker there was freaking loud.

After the show, we continued around the theme park and more rides…

I like to move it move it…

Hey look, it’s Shrek!

Taking picture at the place where it looks like it’s straight from an American drama…

It was near to the evening, so we went out to have dinner before returning back to USS.

That apparently mandatory shot in front of the Universal Studio’s globe, before the sun went down.

Selfie~

Dinner at Aston’s Specialities (the restaurant is no longer there anymore).

And we were back, at USS.

Save Me From Life!!!

Watched a Donkey Live show before leaving.

After a day-long of adventure, we were both tired and exhausted. It had been a great day out and that marked the end of my very first encounter at USS.
It’s really a fun place, but I doubt I’ll be going again because of my phobia with roller coaster. Oops!
(Note: The staffs at USS do their best in ensuring the safety of every roller coaster rider. Nothing will happen, what I’ve stated above are an exaggeration of my inner feelings during the ride. The rides are safer than travelling to JB.)