Oct 21, 2012 - Royal Diary    No Comments

Amsterdam Marathon

Completed my second half marathon in Amsterdam. The weather was ideal and I finished at the same time with Song Yia. It is my personal best! Hope to do more runs in the future!

2nd Half Marathon

Sep 23, 2012 - Royal Diary    No Comments

Dam Tot Dam Loop 2012

We heard late on a Friday from our colleagues that there were bibs still available for this years run on marktplaats, a famous dutch classifieds site. Dam tot Dam is one of the famous runs starting from Amsterdam to Zaandam. The main run is 16KM with shorter distances for other runs. It takes you through a scenic route of the Netherlands with cheering crowds along the way. A must if you have never experienced it before.

I was very disappointing at first when our company were not securing places for this year, as we would like to participate in this run ahead of our half marathon. So, we jumped into the opportunity when a charity had some available. We ended up running for the organisation, Stichting Harambee. Check out their website, also available in english to read about the great work they do.

I manage to pace myself throughout the run but hit my wall at 14KM. My feet felt as if they could not function any faster anymore so I carried on with one foot after another. It is too late for me to give up. Somehow, I pushed through and the feeling of achievement when I cross the finish line is so satisfying.

I was as afraid this time as I did the same run a year ago but the lack of training on my part was a concern. Well, it is now less than a month away from my second half marathon and I am indeed looking forward to it.

I will update the post with more pictures and videos as they become available.

At the starting point, still energised

With our medals

Carlo who joined us for his first run

I will celebrate this evening with some other colleagues with an Indonesian dinner!

Sep 19, 2012 - Royal Tunes    No Comments

FUN @ Melkweg

We manage to get hold of tickets to the sold out gig of the band FUN. Thank god it did not clash with Lady Gaga’s concert or else Song Yia would have never forgiven me.

The Stage
A poorly taken picture, hopefully you could make out the letter that spells FUN.

The concert was for about an hour and half and we struggle to get a good glimpse of the stage due to being in the tallest nation in the world. Nevertheless, it was a good experience as he sang his tunes exactly like in their album. He also did not spent much time on gimmicks or talking with the fans which made the concert focused on the band’s tunes.

Here are some footage I found of recordings of the concert on Youtube to share the experience. Thanks to moonsster78 for the recordings.



Some Nights – The title track for their album



We Are Young – Their billboard Number 1



Why Am I The One



Carry On

Walk The Moon opened for the band.

It was indeed a great concert to be in and we can’t wait till our next one which I believe is Mika!

Aug 25, 2012 - Royal Diary    No Comments

Mysteryland 2012

We got complimentary tickets to this event and will officially be the first ever festival I attend. Top acts such as Calvin Harris, Martin Solveig and Avicii will be performing today. Despite the unfavorable weather, we brave it through to experience this event.

Upon arrival at Hoofddorp, there were bus transfer services to the venue, Haarlemmemeer. We arrived slightly later than the opening ceremony and was welcomed by the rain where we managed to seek shelter in the Big Top. As it is still considered early, there was a lot of room to roam around in the big tent.

The Big Top

The Big Top

Feeling hungry and thirsty, we bought 50 euros worth of tokens using the automated machines like below before exploring the wide range of food available around the stages.

Tokens

There are many stages in this event with different type of music and we were excited to explore them all. Here are pictures I took within the grounds. The first one is a view from the highest point of one of the sections.

View of Mysteryland

Star Club Stage

The Qult

The Q-Dance Stage

I love the randomness of the decorations all over the park.

A Bird

Twitter Look A Like

There was Free Wifi throughout the event courtesy of Vodafone. I guess the satellites below are not for decoration purposes.

Free Wifi

As we could not tolerate the rain anymore, we left earlier than planned as it was becoming unbearable as the crowd keep pushing in to be in the shelter.

To compensate for that, I manage to find a cool video of the closing event at the Q-Dance stage as below which was the most elaborated stage I have ever seen.

Despite the bad weather, I did I enjoy myself at the beginning but left disappointed that I could see watch Calvin Harris performing but at least I saw Martin Solveig from a distance and dancing to his hit “Hello”.

For further information, you can visit their official website.

Aug 21, 2012 - Treasure Chest    No Comments

Free Tools That I Use

Thought it would be a good idea to share with my loyal readers if there are any out there about the free tools available on the internet that I use. The question is why pay when you can get something equally as good for free! It has become a common practise for me to do a quick search on google to see what free options are available before I settle down to purchase an application.

Here are some of the top 3 popular applications that I use.

File Compression

7 zip

I started using 7-zip to compress my files that I host on my cloud server. This is of course to save space and it performs as well as WinZip or WinRar.

FTP Client

I have been using Filezilla for as long as I can remember when I started to get serious with online development. I can’t exactly remember why I switch from WS FTP but it might be due to the nicer user interface. Just remember to download the client version if your intention is to upload files or pages to your web server.

E-Mail Client

Thunderbird

I use Thunderbird to read all my e-mails from most of my main websites. This tool is brought to you by the same good guys that created Firefox Internet browser. One selling point of thunderbird is the wide amount of free add ons available to extend its features. This is definately much better than Microsoft Outlook in my view.

There are endless amount of applications available online and I highly recommend you do your research to ensure you download from reputable sources to avoid spy or adwares.

Click here to visit a one of the better list of softwares and applications available.

Enjoy!!!

Aug 18, 2012 - Royal Diary, Royal Visits    No Comments

Dappermarkt Amsterdam

Another weekend and I continue on my expedition of visiting the street markets of Amsterdam. According to my research, this is meant to be the cheapest market in terms of price. I guess it must be where the bargain hunters frequent and being a distance from the city center also places it out of reach for most.

Upon arrival, you will be welcomed by the orange stripes hanged throughout the length of the market. It boasts a wider road (Apparently the place was designed for a market) and have a slightly larger selection of surrounding shops than Albert Cuyp but everything looks similar.

You can reach this market using tram number 3 at the stop Dapperstraat.

I did not spent as much time as I would have liked here as I was looking out more for flea markets.

This market is quite a distance from the city center so I would recommend you to visit Albert Cuyp Market instead which is much more central.

You can find out more details of this market at their official website. The markets is open daily except Sundays from 10:00 – 16:30.

Aug 12, 2012 - Royal Diary    No Comments

London Olympics Closing Ceremony

Well done to the UK for hosting a successful Olympics. Despite me following closely the scandals, I was happy with the use of technology like Youtube to share the highlights of each sports.

Olympic Mascot

I am also celebrating the fact that Malaysia took two medals home with a hard a fought match in Badminton for a near first gold medal by Dato Lee Chong Wei. A big shout out to Pandeelela for breaking several national records for delivering the first women’s and diving medal. She might be also the youngest Olympian to do that for the country.

The Dutch male gymnast, Epke Zonderland performance in the high bars also deserves a mention here. Search a youtube video for it.

Back to the closing ceremony, one of my highlight of the ceremony is of course the performance of Spice Girls. Yes, I admit it that I am a fan and especially Melanie C. See their performance here of a combination of Spice Up Your Life and Wannabe.

The closing ceremony was a medley of the best of the UK music from all generation including the legends. Yea, John Lennon and Freddie Mercury made an appearance thanks to the use of technology.

I did not stay up long enough to watch the fireworks but thanks to the footage on youtube like embedded below, I am able to stream the whole closing ceremony like I did with the opening.

That’s all for now. See you all in Rio in 4 years time!

Aug 11, 2012 - Royal Diary    No Comments

Surprise Birthday Gift For Song Yia

Thanks to technology, I was able to give Song Yia a surprise for her Birthday. I ordered her favourite flowers over the internet to be delivered in the morning and it worked! Here are the pictures.

Happy Birthday Song Yia!!!

Aug 10, 2012 - Royal Tunes    No Comments

PSY – Gangnam Style

I discovered this video after surfing Youtube for the 100 music videos and it was in the top 5. Out of curiousity, I viewed the video and was entertained throughout.

I find it hilarious in the comments especially from the Koreans trying to explain to the ignorant ones that it is not Japanese. I can imagine the association that might get some pissed off.

I recognise the girl in the video as Hyuna, a member of Korean K-Pop group 4Minute. I know her from the super hot video clip below for the song Bubble Pop.

Besides this video going viral, K-Pop have certainly gone international with Wonder Girls, 2NE1, Bing Bang, Super Junior, Girls Generation among many others getting huge success internationally.

Aug 3, 2012 - Royal Diary    No Comments

Kissaten @ IOI Boulevard

It has become almost of a routine every time I am back home to hangout with my friends. I have known most of them in high school mainly through scouting. Johnny Low on the other hand is someone that I have grewed up with since primary school and it will indeed be a sin if I don’t catch up with him every chance I get.

He recommended this Japanese place for dinner this evening which is a convenient drive for me.

After struggling to locate the facebook page of this establishment to like for a free Ice Lemon Tea, I shared a main with Song Yia which as this fussion type Pizza.

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The semi finals of the Olympic badminton game was also shown on the big screen which made it a convenient topic to talk about. It ended with a high as Malaysia moves on to the finals.

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Thanks again to Jessie and Johnny Low for taking time from their busy schedule to catch up.

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