Friday, 25 December 2015

Konsert ERA Sayang Sarawak 2015


To show their heartfelt gratitude, ERA FM Sarawak had recently held its first ever concert for their loyal listeners at Padang Merdeka Kuching on the 12th of December, 2015. The Konsert ERA Sayang Sarawak (KESS) was mainly sponsored by Emeron and supported by Technology College Sarawak. ERA had lined up some eclectic artistes from both local and international to perform for their radio station supporters. Among them were Afgan, Akim & The Majistret, Black, Stacy, Altimet, Lawa Nie Gang, Deasy Natalina, Mal Imran, iR Radzi, Nana Sheme, Wanie Kayrie and Nadhar.

Press conference and a Meet-and-Greet session for the fans were held before the concert at Merdeka Palace Hotel & Suite. The artistes who came to the press conference gave an insight to what their fans could expect from their performance later that night and updates on their singing career. Fans who won special passes for the Meet & Greet had their posters and CDs' signed. They also had the privilege to take photos with their favourite artistes.

The concert kicked off by the famous trio JoHaRa (Johan, Haniff, Ray) from the Sarapan Pagi ERA FM JoHaRa Pagi ERA segment. They were famous for their spontaneous and humorous punch lines that could evoke laughter or amusement amidst their listeners. Apart from that, those who attended the concert had the chance to win some interesting prizes which were given away in between performances.

On average each artiste perform three songs except Afgan. Afgan sang five of his smash hits and one of them was his latest single, Knock Me Out. He also sang a duet with Wani Kayrie in Kamu Yang Kutunggu. Wani did a great job trying to deliver the song like Dato' Rossa despite her age which was only 15! She is a force to reckon in the music industry in our region especially, the future seems bright for this young lady with a superb vocal. Others were equally entertaining throughout the night with each of them successfully delivering their own hits and energetic performance. The concert came to an end at about one o'clock in the morning with Afgan as its last singer. Crowds stayed till the wee hours because they were excited to see the Indonesian international artiste performed live. It was a golden opportunity for many of his Sarawakian fans since it would be costly to attend his concert even in Kuala Lumpur. We are forever indebted to ERA FM as they managed to get him to perform in Kuching not just once, but twice.

Kudos to ERA FM Sarawak for pulling off a huge yet successful concert. Having 15,000 people came for the show was an indication ERA radio station has a lot of listeners in Sarawak alone. Hopefully this is a great beginning to many more fun concerts that will be held in our state by ERA FM. It would be awesome if this becomes an annual event for the radio station to celebrate its fantastic and fruitful year with their much cherished listeners. ERA FM sure knows how to spoil their supporters! Lastly, thank you so much ERA FM Sarawak for inviting and trusting us to cover this marvellous event.

For more photos of KESS 2015, kindly click on this link:

To watch the recap of KESS 2015, click on Youtube video below or click on this link:



Monday, 14 December 2015

Nando's Kuching


Want to eat healthy? Then head to Nando's in Kuching. The first Nando's restaurant in Sarawak was officiated on the 12th of December, 2015. Some of Sarawak Bloggers Society members and their families had the privilege to join the grand opening at Vivacity Megamall on the auspicious date. 

From a humble Portuguese eatery in the heart of Rosettenville, South Africa, Nando's has grown into one of the world's leading fast casual restaurant brands. With restaurants located in over 30 countries across the world, it's no wonder why everybody's getting a piece of the hot action. From the world's inspiring leaders to celebrities, Obama, Rihanna, David Cameron and Taylor Swift, there's a Nando's fan in every corner of the world. 


All the recent hype about a mystery giant egg roaming around Kuching carrying the hashtag #KuchingHatching had Kuchingites wondered its purpose and many took it to social media sharing the teaser. It was finally revealed that the egg belonged to the much loved flame-grilled PERi-PERi chicken connoisseurs Nando's. 


Our experience at the grand opening was nothing short of excellent service and delectable food. For starter, we were served the 'Appeteasers' which consisted of Spicy Mixed Olives, Red Pepper Dip, Hummus with PERi-PERi Drizzle and warm pita. 


For the second dish, we get to try the side dishes such as Coleslaw, Spicy Rice, Mediterranean Rice, Grilled Veg, Corn-on-the-cob, PERi Chips and PERi Wedges. I would highly recommend anyone to taste the Mediterranean Rice. The fragrance of the rice made the dish so appetising. 


The main dish was undoubtedly the star of this casual dining experience - PERi-PERi Flame-Grilled Chicken. A bite can leave you mesmerised and longing for more. In preparing the chicken, Nando's use only A-grade chickens, trimmed of excess fat and marinated for 24 hours. Besides, they also use 100% natural ingredients for PERi-PERi sauce and marinade. The chicken is flame-grilled for a healthier touch. Most excess fat is burned during this process. To add a little adventure, Nando's has included different levels of heat for the sauces. Diners may choose either Garlic, Mild, Hot or Extra Hot sauce. As for the 'Sweet Endings', we were served the Chocolate Crunch Roll. The dessert was made of melted milk chocolate mixed with biscuits. I must say the Chocolate Crunch Roll was delightful, it neither too sweat nor bland. Just the right amount of sugariness and it definitely gave the taste of heaven. 


I would recommend Nando's Kuching to anyone for its excellent hospitality, great food and appealing restaurant. So what better place is there to host your gatherings, meetings or even parties if it isn't at Nando's. To host your event, just pop by or call the restaurant to talk to their Patraos. To get more details on their menu and price, kindly visit Nando's website or follow them on Twitter and Instagram using the handle @NandosMY. Thank you Nando's and MilkPR for inviting us to your grand opening and the goodies bag, I had a pleasant and unforgettable dining experience for sure! 





Some gifts from Nando's 


Thursday, 10 December 2015

JoHaRa Bakal Temui Peminat Sarawak Sempena Konsert ERA Sayang Sarawak (KESS) Sabtu Ini!



Kuching, 7 November  2015 – Pastinya peminat tidak sabar untuk menyaksikan persembahan artis-artis kesayangan mereka untuk Konsert ERA Sayang Sarawak diserlahkan oleh Emeron dan disokong oleh Technology College Sarawak dengan mempersembahkan artis-artis terkenal tempatan dan antarabangsa seperti penyanyi popular Indonesia  Afgan, Akim & The Majistret, Black, Stacy, Altimet, Lawa Nie Geng, Deasy Natalina, Mal Imran, iR.Radzi, Nana Sheme, Wanie Kayrie dan Nadhar. Buat julung kali diadakan, Konsert ERA Sayang Sarawak yang bakal diadakan pada 12 Disember 2015, bertempat di Padang Merdeka jam 7.30 malam ingin memberikan hiburan yang terbaik buat warga Kuching.


Paling menarik dan bakal mengejutkan warga Kuching, peminat bakal berpeluang menyaksikan celoteh penyampai segmen Sarapan Pagi ERA fm JoHaRa Pagi ERA (Johan, Haniff dan Ray) yang sudah lama tidak menjejakkan kaki di Sarawak! Bukan itu sahaja, sepanjang menyaksikan Konsert ERA Sayang Sarawak pada hari Sabtu nanti,  penonton turut berpeluang memenangi  hadiah-hadiah menarik.

Konsert ini dibawakan khas buat semua pendengar setia ERA fm Sarawak sebagai tanda penghargaan kepada mereka di atas sokongan yang telah diberikan kepada stesen ERA fm Sarawak sepanjang tahun ini. Para pendengar ERA fm Sarawak dan juga seluruh penduduk Sarawak dijemput untuk memeriahkan lagi acara ini dan masuk adalah percuma. Ini juga merupakan masa yang amat sesuai buat penduduk Sarawak bagi memulakan kemeriahan sambutan pembukaan awal tahun 2016 iaitu dengan menghayati persembahan anak kelahiran bumi mereka sendiri.

Sebelum bermulanya persembahan, Skuad ERA akan bersama pendengar di atas pentas untuk lintasan istimewa dan sekaligus berpeluang memenangi barangan eksklusif ERA fm. Dengarkan frekuensi ERA 96.1FM di Kuching, 101.3FM di Miri dan layari laman web, www.era.fm, fbsarawak.era.fm  atau ikuti Instagram erafmsarawak untuk maklumat lanjut mengenai Konsert ERA Sayang Sarawak ini.  




Monday, 7 December 2015

The Vlog Godfather Is Coming To Malaysia!




I've been watching Louis Cole's vlogs for a few years and I must say he is my favourite travel vlogger on Youtube. Louis is well-known for his Youtube Channel which is FUN FOR LOUIS with over 1.6 million subscribers. His 'job' is to travel the world and share his experience with us via his daily vlogs. I love watching his vlogs because you get to see many different countries from a traveller's perspective and sometimes we can see places in 360 view! So far he has been to 65 countries, that's impressive.

Being an avid traveller gets him to places which are not often visited by tourists. He has this idea of travelling the world since returning from his first trip oversea. After almost two decades, Louis and his whole family have decided to come back to Malaysia this year for a family holiday. Yeah, he just announced it on his vlog (which is at the end of this write-up). However, he hasn't informed us specifically which part of the country he will be visiting. Hope he'll drop by Sarawak, fingers crossed! Usually his followers will know in advance his next travel destination. So, it won't be a surprise to see some fans end up on his travel vlog later. 

It's Louis who inspired many people around the world to jump on the vlogging bandwagon. I always find his travel vlogs are a lot more entertaining than the television travel programmes because his videos are the 'raw' stuff and not so 'touristy'. Due to his fame, he always gets invited to give a talk at social media or tech conferences all over the world. Sometimes we can see that his travel is organised and sponsored by travel agents or organisations which need him to promote their causes. I've seen Jamie Oliver, Casey Neistat, Kanye West, Russell Brand, Dr. Scott Kelly, CEOs and many more end up on his vlogs. 

One thing I learn from YouTube vloggers is in this internet era, you can make a career out of your passion. As Confucius says, "Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life". Any famous Youtuber will tell you to keep pursuing what you love to do most and the money or sponsors will come later. You just need to put up quality contents or stories, don't worry about the gadgets that you're using. Well, just letting y'all know that's how I eventually decided to get myself a Canon G7X camera which is owned by vloggers. Not that I want to become one, but I love what the camera can do in different situations. They call it the vlogging camera, famous vloggers like Ben Brown and Casey Neistat have it too. It's an amazing camera! 

So, being a famous vlogger also makes you an influential person. Everything you say, use or wear can easily become a trend. I guess that's why vloggers always get freebies from top brands to promote their products. Besides, vloggers nowadays are really smart too. Not only they are techno-savvy, but they do collaboration to help promote one another. Consider that a healthy online relationship. Being a famous figure on social media also has it's own drawback. The more famous you are, the more haters you're going to have. That's something you need to know how to deal with if you decide to vlog. But when you have millions of followers, you have gotta laugh all the way to the bank and forget about those hateful comments!

Peace Out, Enjoy Life, Live The Adventure. Boom! 

Fun For Louis

Thursday, 3 December 2015

Alive and Kicking!



I have just gone through another surgery and it is my sixth! I'm still in recovery period while writing this entry. I guess I'm used to the surgical pain and I don't make it an excuse not to be productive. Besides, it is my spinal bones around the waist area and left knee that are healing. Not my fingers or mind.

I used to live a very active lifestyle and sustained many sport injuries without knowing its severity. All the pain came back when I began to work and it got worse year by year. Our bones become less dense and more fragile as we age, hence prone to serious injuries which can be fixed by surgery.

Throughout my life, I have had injured my right palm, both knees and backbones. So, surgery is inevitable to allow me to continue living a normal life. Yes, you can still enjoy an active life but of course there is limit in movement. You need to be extra careful not to hurt yourself again. I have stopped doing all sorts of sports even running so that I don't put too much pressure on my knees and back. The only advisable sport which is the safest to carry out and will not hurt my joints is none other than swimming. I however a little scared to share a public swimming pool because I tend to worry how hygienic the water is! After some surgeries, believe me you would dread going back to the hospital.

5/6 of my surgeries were done at KPJ Specialist Hospital Kuching. The process is swift but you will have a huge bill to clear. Fret not if you have a medical card or health insurance. I highly recommend everyone, especially youngsters to invest in a medical card because no one can predict when accident will happen. For example, when I torn my ACL, the director of a government hospital advised me to immediately seek help at a private hospital. It would take months just to get an MRI scan at the government's. Imagine how much longer it would take for me to be able to walk again if I were to wait for them to schedule a surgery? Once you tore your ACL, you would never be able to walk unless you get your knee reconstructed. I am not saying the government hospital is not doing anything to speed up the process for an operation, but they have too many patients and chronic cases to care for. So, we need to understand they have to prioritise in order to save lives. There is no harm spending more on our own healthcare at a private medical institution and for speedy recovery, after all health is wealth. 

My experience being taken care of at KPJ Specialist Hospital Kuching was a pleasant one this time. I noticed there was improvement in terms of food and beverage. I was served different appetising menu for every meal. The doctors, nurses and staff were helpful. There was one nurse I purposely named and commented at the feedback form because she was really attentive, kind and professional. I would give credit where credit is due, I wrote down her name hoping that her organisation would take note of her passion in looking after her patient.

For some a surgery seems like a nightmare, but for me it gives us a chance to live a better life. In fact, after my spine fusion surgery I feel way better with no more pain around the waist. Although it is going to take a long time for full recovery, but I'm optimistic from now on I won't have to come home from work complaining about back pain. Hopefully this will be the last surgery for me. I admit it is painful experience but worth it when you think about being able to lead a painless normal life again.

For more information about KPJ Specialist Hospital Kuching, kindly visit their website:
http://www.kpjkuching.com/index.php


Have to carry this card with me my whole life


Saturday, 14 November 2015

The Volunteer Cook in Lesvos, Greece


One morning when I was driving to school, I listened to two TraxxFM DJs talking about a young and kind Malaysian who went all the way to Greece to help the Syrian refugees. I immediately knew they were referring to Rayyan Haries. He is no stranger to me as I have met him while we were covering the Rainforest World Music Festival back in 2013. I managed to record part of the conversation on the radio and decided I should let him listen to it. He deserves to know that many people from around the world truly appreciate what he has done for those who are seeking opportunities to start again after they have fled their war-torn country. 

Rayyan Haries is currently running The Volunteer Cook soup kitchen at Skala Skamnias where thousands of Syrian refugees arrive in their rubber boats wet, exhausted and hungry. He and his team will serve hot soup and tea all day long besides making sandwiches, biscuits, croissants, milk and juices for the war refugees. To Rayyan and The Volunteer Cook project, food carries an important message which is to give people hope as they continue their journey to wherever they are going. As we are well-informed by now, everyday there are thousands of Syrian refugees willingly risk their own lives crossing the Mediterranean sea from Turkey to Greece on rubber boats just to escape war atrocities. I believe we will never forget when the whole world started to pay attention to these refugees after the photo of lifeless Alan Kurdi lying on the beach went viral on social media, subsequently prompting international response. 

Rayyan's soup kitchen is able to feed thousands of people everyday as it is funded by many generous donors from all over the world. Therefore it is important to donate directly to The Volunteer Cook cause which will allow Rayyan and his team to buy food supplies from the locals. If you do want to support The Volunteer Cook, you can send gifts (money) as family and friends on Paypal to r.haries.er@gmail.com . To my fellow Malaysians, you can always transfer fund to CIMB Bank Malaysia, the account number is 7008398899. Remember to email Rayyan Haries at thevolunteercook@gmail.com for those are sending gifts through CIMB account so that he can keep track of your donations. For further enquiry, please email Rayyan at thevolunteercook@gmail.com . To get updates on The Volunteer Cook cause, you may want to follow his page at: 

So, keep the funds coming and put some smiles on the faces of those who desperately need them. To dearest Rayyan Haries, keep doing the great work for humanity sake, keep inspiring the world with your food and smile. Ignore the negativity and remember you are already making headlines around the globe. This world needs more people like you to make it a better place. 




Friday, 25 September 2015

CANON PhotoMarathon Kuching 2015



Photo taken during the 'run'

Photography enthusiasts in East Malaysia had the opportunity to participate in an annual photography event which was recently organised by CANON Malaysia in Kuching on the 20th of September, 2015. Canon PhotoMarathon is Canon's largest annual photography event which is also held in other countries such as Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam, India, Thailand, Cambodia, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Brunei. The "base camp" or the official venue for Kuching's CPM was Boulevard Mall. Registration began as early as 7 a.m and each participant was given goodie bag, tag and the official t-shirt. All the fees collected from participants were donated to some charities. 

It is not difficult to join this event because all you need is either a DSLR or a compact camera, regardless of the brand. People who are not familiar with this event have this misconception that you need to own a professional camera, you must be a pro-photographer and you need to run as in jogging during the competition. In fact, some of us who took part in Canon PhotoMarathon came as a family. There were some young kids who participated too. So, there is nothing to be shy about for not using any Canon's camera or just because you are an amateur photographer. We were at this event to have fun and learning from one another at the same time. 

Participants had to submit one photo for each theme and before the cut-off time. We were given three themes throughout the day. For those who completed the challenge within the stipulated time, they were awarded certificates of participation. Although we were not literally running to get the perfect shots, but it was a bit of a rush going places to capture photos for each theme. Besides, we had to submit only one photo within three hours for every theme. All photographers were allowed to travel anywhere to shoot, some participants even went to a cave or as far as Kuching Waterfront to take some stunning photos. 

All the interesting shots taken were shown on a stage screen throughout the day and two of my photos were featured (Theme 1 & 3). Although I did not win any prize but that was already quite an achievement as not everyone's photo was up on the big screen. I must admit photos taken by those in Junior category (under 18) were as good as those in the Open category. The competition offered attractive prizes to both Open and Junior categories. The grand prize went to Sheblee Zulazhar and the Junior category won by Renee Bong. The grand prize winner won himself a trip to Japan for a photography clinic and also some really cool photography equipments. What I really like about this competition is that it truly puts our photography or shooting skills to the test and no one is allowed to edit their photos. 

Just for your information, this annual photography event will not be organised in Kuching only. We are not sure if it is going to be held here again next year as Canon wants to give equal opportunity to other cities too. So, I'm glad and grateful I really pushed myself to join the Canon PhotoMarathon. It was really a fun-filled learning experience, will I do it again? Yes, no doubt I will. Hey, at least I got to meet TV-Celebrity/Professional Photographer like Justin Mott from the History Channel's Photo Face-Off. 


Photo for theme 1: Natural

Photo for theme 2: Hide & Seek

Photo for theme 3: Weather



Click the link below to see all the photos taken by the winners: