Let me tell you about my singapore trip. To sum it up, it was tiring.
I stayed at the or.chard hotel, which is a nice hotel. I got a room all to myself. One with a bathroom scale. 😛
The entire trip consisted of 10-hour working days. One day, we actually had to assemble at the hotel lobby at 6.30am. The night before, me and the other msian media lepak at a nearby mcd chatting until 1.30pm. Crazy ppl! To my surprise, we bonded really well. Most of the time, we spoke in Malay altho three of us are chinese and speak mandarin really well.
Proficiency in mandarin is really necessary in spore if you want to blend in. when you’re in a trip where there are people from china and taiwan, you want to speak the language. I was never really interested in picking up the language before this trip. Japanese was more my thing – although I can hardly speak it. But to my credit, I still remember some key phrases like “let’s take a picture together”. 😛
But after meeting a taiwanese lady who could speak japanese, everything changed for me. Granted, she went to school in japan but she just proved to me that you can speak both language, no problem.
So, i came back to msia totally inspired to learn the two languages. if i really try, I can do it. i’ve always been better in languages anyway.
anyhow, back to the trip. we had to wake up really early to attend a school assembly. i’m not kidding. that was what happened. it was more for the benefit of the media and educators from other countries. but it was part of the itinerary so we just went along with it.
i’m not one to complain unless it is something that i absolutely cannot tolerate. and i cannot stand it when people make it hard for me to do my job. the finale of the spore trip, suffice to say, put a damper on my [our] entire trip there.
i mean, we had a great time there. we went to the zoo, museums and sentosa. we had nice food and company. but everything was ruined by bad event management.
– we had to sit on the grass because the other option was to sit at the stadium stand under the hot blazing sun (when we were told we’d be seated at a covered area)
– we had to take pictures from an unrealistic distance
– we were expected to go on tours of premises and conduct interviews – all in 20 minutes
being media people, we bitch behind the organisers back and also gave them a piece of our minds. and the funny thing is they got quite worried about it. they were worried that we’d give bad publicity to the event. but we’re more professional than that. altho i have to admit that it left us with little mood to write.
one of the msian chinese media vowed she will never again go on a trip organised by the same organiser. me? i’m fine with them, so long as it’s a sight-seeing, junkett kind of trip. another opening ceremony? maybe not.