The Roadshow Stories

The Borneo Post dated 17th Jan 2008, page 6

Knowing the fact that I have to wake up very early in the morning somehow makes me feeling un-comfortable sleeping soundlessly throughout the night. I woke up early even before my alarm clock wakes me up. As I have packed my stuff a day earlier, I decided to tidy up my house before leaving it empty for 3 days and 2 nights. Once everything done, I drove my car to my cousin’s place who had promised to send me off to the airport.

As promised, I met my colleagues at the airport and checked in a group to avoid any excess baggage’s charges as we brought along plenty of materials. As it was the university series of road show in line with our first intake, my first trip was to Bintulu. We departed at 7am and I was already feeling tired, exhausted and sleepy at this point; worst still as I wasn’t feeling well and fit to travel. 🙁

First time seating at the last seat of a Fokker plane

It was my first time checking in at the Plaza Regency Hotel which is located at the centre of Bintulu town and it was the university first time also to conduct an event at the hotel. Though I just stayed a night at this hotel, it had left me bad experiences and I wouldn’t want to stay there anymore. The next morning, I was shocked to find out there were no water supply available. The hotel guest weren’t been informed on the water problem in advance and according to my next door room guest who had been staying there for a month plus (a sponsored Petronas’s staff undergoing training in Bintulu) that was the third time it has happened and no notice in advance given. The water supply problem usually will be solved within 6-8 hours and I on the other hand can’t’ wait as I have a plane to catch in the afternoon to Sibu.

Luckily, my colleague (who is from Bintulu) saved my day by bringing the team to freshen ourselves at his brother-in-law chalets – Villa Mardiah. The place is located along Bintulu-Sibu highway on top of a hill (on the way to Bintulu airport) and currently undergoing some construction but there some chalets are open for the public. To stay in the chalet will only cost you RM60 per night which is suitable for family, small group of 5 and the place is also suitable for teambuilding course or conducting seminar or workshop as it has a multipurpose hall for such activities. The chalet is equipped with Astro tv channels, parabolic tv stations, mini kitchen, bathroom, mini living room, a patio outside the chalet and each chalet had fan and air-cond inside it.

From my point of view, your money sure worth it if you are looking forward for something like this however the place is far from the town so it is advisable to drive your own car should you decide to check out the place next time.

After enjoying the panoramic views from Villa Mardiah, we drove back to the hotel to pack our stuff before departing to Sibu. My Agents brought us for lunch at Riverfront Café which is located opposite Bintulu wharf and by looking at the express boat embarked the wharf jetty somehow re-call back my memories on Marudi wharf – my hometown.

A typical express boat – photo courtesy of Nadai.Name

Soon after we finished our lunch, we got on two taxis to the airport as we were catching the next flight to Sibu in the afternoon. I was so excited to visit Sibu again as my last visit there was more than 15 years ago. I frequently visited Sibu town back in the 80’s during the week end via express boat as my dad was posted at Bintangor town back then. Once touched down at Sibu’s airport, my childhood memories start to appear in my head. I remembered the location where I used to play hide and seek with my brothers during any delayed flight and back then it always happened during the year end school holidays. I remembered the family would hopped in a bus to town instead of taking the taxi as it was quite costly back then to travel from the airport to town and vice versa.

But the most memorable memory that I can’t forget about Sibu is when the whole family came down to Sibu twice just to watch the box office movie – The Jungle Book. I still liked to watch that movie even till today and as a matter of fact, I bought myself an ORI DVD version of the movie. 🙂

My evergreen cartoon movie 🙂

As overall, Sibu has changed, a lot actually. There are lots of developments going on and not surprisingly Sibu is aggressively competing with Miri city from what I heard and now by seeing it with my own eyes kind of proved everything. I noticed cost of living here is rather cheap as compared to Miri. The only thing I regret is losing my ability to speak in FooChow language as I can speak fluent FooChow back then. But heiii…I still know how to curse in FooChow language so don’t try me. 😉

I stayed at TanahMas Hotel,Sibu and apparently the hotel is currently under renovation. So, I can’t comment much about the hotel but I was impressed with the customer services as compared to Plaza Regency Hotel, Bintulu. I even checked out the hotel newly renovated coffee house – Pepper Café. Actually, the cheese cakes on display were the main attraction and a good reason for me to visit the coffee house and go online mmuuehehe. ;p

I definitely fall for your trap if you bait me with cheese cakes ;p

Due to the hectic schedules I had, I hardly can squeeze my time to visit a blogger friend shop that happen launches its shop opening ceremony on the day I arrived Sibu. I feel bad as I’ve promised her that I will drop by. I’m sorry Goolooloo and I hope I can visit you again in my next upcoming trips.

I woke up around 4am and getting myself ready for my last stop of the trip which is to Kuching. The flight to Kuching departs at 7am and we were so happy simply because we boarded a Boeing plane. We have been traveling via Fokker planes on the last two trips and that leaves a bad trauma to one of my colleague mmuuahahaha…Poor him and I think he wouldn’t want to travel with me again if I get him to board a Twin Otter plane hahahaha… ;p

We reached Kuching as early as 7:40am and I think most of Kuchingnites are not awake yet and still enjoying their week end beauty sleep. Once we reached our destination, we did a quick setup and after completion we went for a quick breakfast at a nearby coffee shop. While I was having my breakfast, I felt like dreaming; simply because the previous night I was having a KFC meal in my hotel room and now having roti canai for breakfast in Kuching. I wasn’t sure whether I am still in Bintulu, Sibu, Miri or in Kuching hehehe… ;p

Sometimes, things that are well planned ahead may not materialize due to unforeseen circumstances’ and that what happened to my Kuching trip. Not that I’m complaining about it just that I was really frustrated about it. It has somehow some experience to learn from and it’s a hard one to learn too. *deep sigh*

Before I left Kuching for good, I decided to check out the recent open shopping mall in Kuching – The Spring. I was amazed as it was an exciting and thrill moments; entering The Spring is like entering the mini size of MidValley shopping mall. I felt like I’m in KL throughout my one hour ‘visit’ there, really. As it was newly open, there few empty shop lots and all of them are reserved for ‘big names’ like MsRead, MNG, ManHattan Fish Market, Vincci and many more.

I was told there’s always long queue at Sushi King and true enough it has dampen my spirit to check out the place out upon seeing the long queue. It gave me the impression on Kuchingnites that they either loves Japanese food or as it newly open, everybody just want to give it a try. I end up trying Korean version of sushi and not forgetting ‘the can’t live without’ appetizer – Kimchi at the Food Court instead.

Been to Sushi King but don’t have the chance to taste the food 🙁


My Korean version of Sushi with Kimchi

I noticed The Spring offers mostly branded stuffs to the public and most of it are rarely found in Sarawak such as Primavera, Himalayan, Habib Jewel, Hush Puppies, Starbuck Coffee and Secret Recipe (just to name few). To Mirians, eat your heart out on these mmuuehehehe… ;p

Honestly, I had a moment of déjà vu while in The Spring and I’ll definitely be back here in my next trip. Kuching trip had definitely made up my day and I better start to safe to buy me MsRead blouses. 😉

8 Comments

  1. Nightwing

    22 January, 2008 at 6:05 am

    Great stuff about Kch. Will want to go down there myself to check out the new shopping place.

    Like that no need to go KL already (where traffic jams here and there).

    In Kch, no problem…can get a car and drive around..:)

    Thanks for the tip abt the hotel in Bintulu.

    U recover from ur cough?

  2. Mystery LadyBird

    22 January, 2008 at 6:35 am

    Yes NightWing, it all dpnd on wat u r lookin 4 actually..if u r a ‘branded’ person thn u cn save yr travel cost by doin yr shoppin 8 D Spring only hehehe..

    Abt tat hotel in Bintulu, i seriously do nt wanna go bck ter *period*

    Still coughin wif less mucus nw hehehe…i cn 4 c i wudnt recover soon frm d cough as i cant quit my fogging hehehe… ;p

  3. smallee

    22 January, 2008 at 8:40 am

    Ladybird.. after reading your stories.. feel like u r on a mini amazing race sarawak ya.. from one point to another point in a short time like tat…hehe..

    Last time when i was in kch, the spring is still under construction la.. now seeing them open oledi.. make me feel like making a trip there for the sushi king…and do some shopping…

  4. Mystery LadyBird

    22 January, 2008 at 8:53 am

    Smallee,
    yes u r quite true in a way tho hehehe..esp whn both of us liked 2watch d Amazing Race Asia..;)

    yes do drop by 8 d Spring shud u visit Kch nxt time, a place u wudnt regret 8 all, seriously..

    p/s: don 4get 2 check out on TPK’s new hotel as well. I heard its gonna b 12 storey hotel n nw its under piling stage.. 😉

  5. Desmond

    23 January, 2008 at 10:45 am

    Wah…i hope you enjoyed Kuching. It does seem that all activities are jammed this month which saw me criss crossing the Borneo part of Sarawak, Sabah & Labuan. I discovered Internet access in Sabah was damn expensive in all the hotels I stayed (no free WiFi like in Sarawak) so I was simply deprived of Internet…i don’t know why Hotels would charge RM60 for Internet…but your Bintulu experience – if I was to choose between no Internet and No water…hehehe.. better no Internet…

  6. melbie

    23 January, 2008 at 11:15 am

    I’m not sure if I can survive such hectic schedule … hopping from one place to another … very tiring! Hehe .. but at least you had some fun at the Spring hehe .. and that cheese cake looked yummy! I love cheese cake! Hehe …

    Secret Recipe, Primavera, Hush Puppies – we have them here in KK .. and ofcoz I love going to Starbucks & Big Apple Donuts too.. Don’t have to go to KL for those anymore hehe .. and don’t have to go to KL to experience bad traffic jam too .. oh well… can’t have it all can we? 🙂

  7. Mystery LadyBird

    23 January, 2008 at 11:51 pm

    Desmond,
    oh yes i do njoyed my 1hr visit 2 D Spring n i’ll definitely b bck 2 Kch soon – end of Feb (hint2) ;p

    OMG!! I rather not to choose Internet..my day wudnt b complete w/out water, really…

    Abt d wifi thingy, Sarawak juak the best kan! 🙂

  8. Mystery LadyBird

    24 January, 2008 at 12:00 am

    Mel,
    Well wat cn i say. Sabahan r lucky 2hv all of thse ‘big names’ over ter n Sarawak is slowly ‘picking up’…n its quite true tat u don need 2worry so much abt traffic jam 2shop 4 thse branded stuffs in KK as compared 2 KL…untung bah korang sana! 🙂

    Abt d hectic schedules, 8 1st it may look impossible but once u r on it, it wasnt complicated as wat u think it is…jst blief in yrself tat u cn do it. 🙂

    Aaahhh anthr cheese cake luver. Bahh tau sudah aku apa mau kasi ‘umpan’ dia lain kali ehekk.. ;p

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