Category Archives: My news

The innocent can never last

We are volunteers

10 days in Langkawi as a volunteer for the SEA Games. The experience was mostly good, I was doing the same things I did for the Monsoon Cup, just in a different capacity. I wrote daily reports but instead of having them as press releases, it got posted onto the official website’s news section.

My team was very small, just four of us. The manager is a big outdoor enthusiast, the other two are young students. We worked well together, and I am grateful to have these ladies for support. We could laugh off almost everything, while enduring the administrative chaos throughout our time there.

I learned more new things about how a regatta is held and had a refresher on things I have forgotten. Like how the race officials are the most hardworking lot apart from the athletes. I don’t think Cik Burn spent more than an hour on land everyday as he had to oversee not one, but four race courses while the PRO even had time to do a ‘wind dance’.

As media volunteers, we assist in ensuring coverage goes smoothly for the press people. Daily routine included boat availability check, updates on results and for me, making sure that they actually know what was going on out on the water. And I file stories with the hope that people would want to read up more about the sport.

I would love to see sailing being in the mainstream, for sailors like Fauzi, Wanie, Latif and Lin to have the same opportunities as athletes in football and hockey for funding and sponsorship. I also want them to have the chance to make use of their talent to move upwards, turn professional. Like Ben Ainslie or Peter Burling. I don’t think my stories would get them there, but some attention to them is better than nothing at all. These kids do not have a trust fund to finance their careers or have a wealthy backer to set them up with a team. At least not yet.

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Make me better

Title of a song in James Blunt’s new album.  A very personal song and stripped down to the basics.  Pure music.

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Watching Grimm and Sleepy Hollow reminded me again of why we should keep a record of the things happening around us.  They ALWAYS go back to books, journals, letters.  I write crappy stuff in my journals, but there are some useful reminders of significant events and milestones too.  Of happy moments, of heartbreaks and valuable lessons.  Maybe not much of the last part, though.

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I am reading stories written by people I know this past week.  So different in style and genres but that is what makes it amazing.  Their personalities and characters are inside their books, sometimes in a word, an expression or even the names chosen to inhabit the world they created.  Local publishing houses, especially the new ones, should realise the importance of EDITING and PROOFREADING a product.  Typos can be a big turn off when you are caught up in the pages.

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Yes, I should write.

Sisterhood

We found a spot on the beach, the bean bags were big enough for us to sit and lean back. I looked up to the sky and saw that the stars were already out. Two days and nights together, and it felt really nice to chill and reconnect and eat of course. It felt like a school trip, minus the uniform and annoying teachers.  Haha.

The conversations, the food, the laughter, even the tears.  Thank you for the camaraderie, for the love, for everything.

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lipe

Nothing left to break

My second Royal Langkawi International Regatta, this time as a Blue Angel in IRC2. Only four boats in the group, and I felt like we might not have a chance at line honours. However, with the lowest handicap and some decent finishes, we came in second overall. Phoenix, the winning boat, was just too fast for us. Even with an OCS where she had to do a penalty on the start line, she managed to win EVERY. RACE. Simply awesome.

Blue Angel - cruiser yang berangan nak jadi racer

Blue Angel – cruiser yang berangan nak jadi racer

It felt good to be up on stage again, after our Raja Muda adventures last November. Too bad for the Navy/MAF team, URANUS was no competition to the TP52’s, and having a makeshift crew didn’t help things. Stiff competition in the Sports Boat category too, but they managed to sneak in as runner up after Tom & Co. improved their standings in the final few races.

On the social side of the event, I guess I did pretty well, considering how I stuck to my own lot in 2015. This time there was a surprise connection with my JB friends and Eddy made sure we did a few rounds of mingling. Some really old photos resurfaced and there were plenty of stories exchanged over drinks, nasi with gulai and loud music.

Sunset at Bass Harbour

Sunset at Bass Harbour

There were some glorious sunsets too, at the marina and one while visiting Labarque. Patrick opted out from volunteering at the regatta, so he kept Tigger the cat company on the boat while Elizabeth was on the water at Mark A with Che Ajis and Tengku Deen, along with Tom the retired US Navy diver.  Managed to go on board for a short visit and spent a couple of hours with the Labarque people before I headed to the airport on Sunday.

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I left my heart in Langkawi during my first RLIR. I think I got it back. Not entirely healed, but quite at peace with the universe.

Everlong

Ever since Eddy got back from Cape Town, she and I have been getting regular sailing time with a boat – the Blue Angel. The owner and his wife are lovely people with really interesting back stories.

Apart from that, we managed to get a short refresher course in PD with another cool couple and I really feel lucky to meet all these people who took the time to teach as well as giving us the opportunity to race on a regular basis. To-date, we have raced five times on board Blue Angel and I think we have a good chance of crewing for her in the Raja Muda.

A few days ago, someone asked what my dream was and I said to sail around the world. The latest Clipper Race had just ended and the VOR will start again next year.

Crowdfund my way to the Clipper Race? I don’t know. There is no harm in trying but I feel that using people’s money for my own pursuit of adventure is very wrong. Unless I am getting paid to write or do stuff for it, like my old column in 2010.

Doing an RTW is something I don’t mind repeating. Maybe not so much of getting lost anymore, you would not want to get lost in the Southern Ocean, no. I don’t know if I’d be able to do even a leg of the Clipper anytime soon but I think maybe rounding the Malaysian peninsula is a more doable venture.