Sunday, July 25, 2010

Universal City @ LA

It was not easy to get to Universal City by yourself, as a tourist, I tell you. You need to walk, take a few trains, walk again, take another train, and walk again, until you arrive...


But the ordeal is worthwhile. Let me show you why... basically there is only 1 main reason...

You see, LA is a metropolis very close to Mexico, so instead of seeing loads of Americans on the streets, you see loads of Mexicans, and Mexicans aren't exactly the most hospitable people in the US. It's kind of like KL actually, you see more Indons/Bangla than you see Malaysians...

Until we set foot into this Universal City...


Ok ok, this post is just a joke... the pictures above do not point to the only reason that Universal City is THE place to be, I'll make a post more properly soon, ok?

And no lah! I'm not a hamsap itchy-head, I curi snapped these photos for the sake of the blog only, ok?!!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Journey to Universal City @ LA

After a not so enjoyable dinner and a night's rest, we were ready to conquer explore LA the next day...

The weather was good for walking, but not that good for photography...


But we're going to do a lot of walking though, so it's good...

The plan was to not take the $90 city tour, but make our own way to Universal City/Hollywood... and the first stage of the plan is to walk 2 miles to the nearest Metro Rail station from our hotel...

Walking has an advantage actually, you can do things that you can't do being inside a bus...


You can also get to see interesting structures instead of being on it...


The 2 miles walk took us about 30 minutes and 80% of our stamina... but it was worth it, being able to experience the Metro Rail, LA's version of the LRT.

The system here is very "gentleman"-ly, there are 2 automated ticketing kiosks at the station, but they don't have electronic gates to stop you to enter without tickets. You don't buy ticket, you still can go and wait for the train and board the train. There will be random spot checks by conductors, that's all...


I'm not sure what I felt that time, when I saw an advertisement board in Chinese on the train...


The train is not too glamorous actually...


And track security is, well... there's fence running on both sides of the rail track, some parts have gates, people can just open the gate and cross, no system to alert you if a train is nearing...


I didn't manage to snap many pictures on our train ride, it was very shaky and the few pics I managed were all crap... but we really saw the less glamorous side of LA. You see, our hotel was actually outside downtown LA, so on the way into it, we passed by lots of shabby areas, shacks, cheap graffiti @ vandalized walls, etc... definitely something we won't be able to see were we on a tour bus...

And then, we were supposed to transit to another route to Universal City, but our luck was so great, 3 stations before our transit station, the train operator suddenly announced that track's closed, we need to get off here and take the free shuttle to our destinations.

We were tourists, and the shuttle driver didn't announce the station names when he stopped. When we got off on the third stop, it was actually the wrong station! City map shows we were 2 miles from the supposed transit station, and the bus left, so.... no choice but walk...

Because of this mistake though, we passed by a legendary place in the LA...


Home of Kobe Bryant LA Lakers...

We also managed to discover that there is something in the LA that is much cheaper than SF...


In SF, the price would be the same, but ALL DAY would be replaced by PER HOUR @.@"

LA is a quiet city though... it was 11.00am in the morning, the streets...


After 40 minutes of trudging, we saw the building that houses the transit station! Woohoo!!!


Got onto the right train, 15 minutes later, we arrived at Universal City station. Sibeh tiring, this journey to Universal City, I tell you...


But given the choice again, I'd do it again, the experience beats sitting inside a luxury tour bus...

I wonder if we will have the energy to explore Universal City...

Friday, July 23, 2010

Bye Bye Loveland, Hello LA

Shit... I have been putting off the US posts for far too long... need to quickly complete em' posts...

Anyway, Loveland posts are done. I was there for 11 days, 2 weeks spanning 1 weekend, it was fun. Not exciting, not bustling like a city, but fun nonetheless...

Here's a panorama of Lake Loveland...


We were lucky that on the Friday when we left, it became sunny for the first time in a week. It lasted all the while we drove from Loveland to the car rental return place near Denver International Airport and took the shuttle into the airport. Shortly after we got into the airport, the sky turned to this...


It was as if Colorado weather is showing us it will miss us, just as how I will miss the weather there...

Had to leave nonetheless, flight ain't not gonna wait for us...

Our return flight was a transit through Los Angeles...


And, as we did with SF, we did too at LA, hehehehe... 2 days 2 nights transit in the LA too... not really intentional though, the only flights available are these dates...

For our LA hotel, we chose Hampton Inn as well, it is located nearby LAX, the area is called Inglewood...


When we checked into the hotel, it was already evening, so the first thing to do after dispatching our luggage was to look for dinner...

The hotel receptionist was kind enough to give us a pamphlet highlighting the best place to eat in that area, and better still, the hotel shuttle can send/pick us from there free of charge. So we picked 1 of the Mexican restaurant from that pamphlet and told the shuttle driver, can't remember the name though...

Instead of bringing us there, the driver told us, the pamphlet cannot be trusted, he knows of a better place for Mexican food, home cooked style he said. He looks Mexican, he sounded friendly, so we decided to trust him, and he brought us here...


We even tipped him when we arrived. To our dismay, after we entered the restaurant, we saw him entering too, and we saw him approach the counter, and we saw the cashier gave him some money...

FUCK!!! We realized we got pwned for the first time in America!

And true to our suspicion, the food was rubbish, the service was rubbish, the deco was rubbish... in fact it was so rubbish that I didn't bother remembering what we ordered, and didn't bother to take pictures...

We didn't finish our food, paid up, and left the restaurant. I don't know if the food was expensive or not, it was our first meal in LA. And for the first time in the US, I didn't give any tips...

It was getting cold at night, so we decided to head back to the hotel...

Here's one blurry photo of the street nearby hotel I managed to snap...

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Cinema Adventures

Was at the cinema alone to watch Predators yesterday evening. It seems like every time I go to the cinema alone, interesting things happen...

Last time I went alone, I encountered blatant liars. This time, I have three things to share...

1. My looks pass as a Penangite

You see, I was the first to enter the hall, it was still 15 minutes before the show starts, so the hall is still brightly lit and it was easier to be aware what's going on around you.

There was this group of 4, 2 couples I presume, they came in, went to the row of seats behind me, weaved through the whole row, then make it to the same row as me on the other side, see picture below for better understanding.

(I was at D18, they were sitting at D10-D13)

The guys walked behind the girls and followed them through this zig zag.

Guy: 点解你要甘样行? 直头前面入米得咯? (Why you wanna walk like this, enter from the row in front mai can lo?)
Girl: 前面有人坐住吗 (Got people sitting in front ma *that "people" was referring to me*)
Guy: 讲excuse me啦 (Say excuse me la)
Girl: 唔好意思吗 (Paiseh ma *shit I forgot the English term for this*)

They were talking quite loudly, just a few seats away from me. They thought I don't understand Cantonese, they don't know I am KL kia =.="

2. A couple can communicate in 4 different languages

Shortly after incident #1, I heard a couple talking behind me, didn't look back so not sure where they were sitting though...

Guy: 你肚唔肚饿? 我出去买D野比你食好唔好? (Are you hungry? I go out buy something for you to eat ok?)
Girl: 不用啦, 戏要开始了, 看完才去吃啦 (No need la, the movie is going to start soon, eat after finish the movie la)
Guy: Nevermind la, I go and buy now, very fast one.
Girl: Men la! Sit down! (Men, hokkien = no need)

Cantonese, Mandarin, English, Hokkien.... @@

No wonder people say Malaysians are language experts...

3. People have their dinner in the cinema for evening shows

I was watching as people begin to flock into the hall, and very soon the hall was filled with aromatic smell. Sitting at a seat relatively back from the screen, I paid attention to what people brought into the hall. All of them were food bought from the counters outside. I saw people bringing in (in chronological order, more or less): fish and chips, hot dog, hot dog, hot dog, cup corn, hot dog, fish and chips, hot dog, hot dog, nuggets, hot dog, chicken meat balls, hot dog, hot dog, cup corn, fish and chips, hot dog, hot dog.....

I think I was the only idiot that bought pop corn....

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Cotton Buds

Was looking for cotton buds at Queensbay yesterday night, couldn't get them at Jusco and Watson's because they were sold out, so I went to Guardian instead...

Saw this tipped cotton bud for the first time in my life, I thought it's new design, so I bought it, thinking this tipped end should enhance my "digging" experience...


Turns out, this is not new design at all...


=.=".....................

Yala yala, I'm the sakai la... how I know?? I never buy cosmetics before, never pay attention to the "accessories" what :(

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Bear Lake @ Rocky Mountain

As we reached the end of Bear Lake Road, we were greeted by a parking area, some shelters and a guard post.


This is where we have to get out of the car and proceed by foot. Need to be careful though, because the snow is still here and it's still extremely slippery...


Apparently, there are some wild life in this part of the park...


And there's actually a couple of ways for us to hike around this Bear Lake...


As I said, the hiking trail is still covered with snow... which is absolutely abnormal for the month of May, usually by April the snow will almost be all gone...


After 20 minutes hike, we finally reached to Bear Lake, only for us to see this:


Sienzzz... even the ice over the lake had not melt... haih... instead of a lake, we saw this ice plain =.="


Was tempted to step onto the lake, but saw ample evidence that the ice is going away...


Don't wanna end up like what happened in the movie Jumper, I ain't got no jumpin' magic in me...

And this time of the year, it's even more dangerous than during winter, because some of the snow turned to ice, so you never know the next step you take, you would step onto is snow or ice...

Snow is relatively easy to handle while walking, your foot just sinks into it, but if you are not careful when you stepped on ice, this is what happens:


Was hoping to see some wildlife (not bears, but those birds and deers maybe), but all that we managed to catch a glimpse of are squirrels...


Another view of the snow covered trail...


I thought only Malaysia is famous for those bloody donation boxes, didn't expect to see one of them in the US as well...


And oh, it's open season for skaters too, need to be careful not to bump into them while hiking...


Came to Bear Lake, cannot see bear lake, sienzzz, after awhile, we begin to make our way back to Loveland...

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Intern Girl pt. 2

I was doing 5S on my cubicle sempena the up and coming audit when I noticed this:


I totally forgot about this appreciation gift that the intern girl gave to me on her last day.

She also gave appreciation gifts to a few more people lah... so don't jump into conclusions you mofos...


Actually, it's the first time I worked with an intern as a full time staff of a company, my previous experience with internship was that I was the intern! So, it's kind of a new experience for me...


In fact, I never really taught her anything technical... the only thing that I think I taught her was the reality of office politics, ponteng as much as you can while you still can the differences between studying life and working life...

The gift has a tiny envelope attached on it...


Open and see what's inside...


Got little note some more...


Awwwww~~~!!!

How lah... how not to like this type of intern?

And I mean the normal like ah, not the romantic version of like ah, don't twist my intention...

The last time I was an intern, my mentor was away at customer site on my last day, and I left at 3pm instead of 5, I didn't even shake his hand or say thank you... =.="