Thursday, February 26, 2009

Gear Up

Woohooo! New kits to use for the next futsal outing.

I got the shoes from Queensway only @ SGD49, really a steal imo even to use it as a normal sneakers. Though it would look kinda strange i guess with the mini stud grooves... hehe..

Sadly it doesn't come in red base

On top of the shoes, on an impulse I also picked up 3 more original jerseys to add to my collection. The fonts are all champions league's and they look really nice with the mini club logos incorporated in the number set. They are, from left to right:

Juventus - Away - Del Piero - 10

Inter Milan - Home - Ibrahimovic - 8

Barcelona - Home - Messi - 10

And *drum roll* the last piece of jigsaw to complete my jersey puzzle!! TA-DA!!

I have been looking high & low for a goalkeeper jersey but it seems like everybody is having trouble getting the original replicas in their hands. However I managed to find this seller in a local forum that does goalkeeper replica jerseys from Thailand. Obviously this is not original T______T but i'm really desperate for one so I went into the dark side.

My precious VDS jersey
Would love a 90s goalie jersey of Peter Schmeichel

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Home sweet home... Singapore??

My last singapore stopover before returning back to Indonesia has been a very pleasant one so far. Hanging out with friends, talking about the past, watching football with groups of friends has really been heart warming.

Once a group of friends taught me the importance of true friendship and before i departed from Singapore for good, they gave me these golden words that would be in my memory forever i hope.

"Best friends are like siblings that God never gave you"

I would though prefer to add another line.

"Best friends are like siblings that God never gave you
he wants to teach you the lesson of being thankful for them"

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Day 6 - Guangzhou

Back to Guangzhou at last after a gruelling air flight marathon spanning 6 cities in 5 days. I wonder how those senior citizens can take this type of schedule when I'm already on the brink of giving up after the Beijing - Wuhan flight.

Since we are back here, It's time to do last minute shopping. Not that I have much time though since I only have a day and there is so much things to buy.

Okay to recap, these are the places (in random order) you want to go in Guangzhou for really cheap stuff.

步云天地 - For all kinds of shoes, men, women, children and etc

Roads between
步云天地 & 站西路 - Sells all sorts of sports related merchandise from jerseys and socks to collectibles and accessories.

站西路 - Replica watch & silver accessorieswholesale market

北京路 - A place to hang out, eat and a lot of Giordano-ish fashion outlets

白马广场 - For ladies fashion, level 1-2 only allows bulk shopping if i'm not wrong.

天河电脑城 - 5-6 SLS sized buildings lined up from 1 street to the end, go imagine. There is also a large generic shopping mall nearby - Tee Mall

Xiang Xia Jiu - I don't know the 汉字 for this place but taxi drivers should know. It's very similar to Bei Jing Lu but more catered to the teenagers market like Far East Plaza and old Heeren lvl 5. I did manage to take a picture of the place though.

TBC, need to rush off to catch my flight :p

Edit: Added some more locations

Day 5 - Wu Han

Not much things to note in this city which was named by taking the first 2 characters of the neighbouring cities - Wu Chang & Han Kou. We were here to visit a laser machinery company that could help us in our embroidery work. Turns out the machine was so good that we were really glad we made the trip. I hope this machine can aid us in this lousy financial year!

Some shots from Wuhan airport and the airplane that is about to bring us back to Guangzhou.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Day 5- Bei Jing

Finally, the capital of China - Beijing. Surprisingly, Beijing only started snowing 2 days back and the whole city is experiencing quite a drought.

White snow fields all around the landing strip

It is even colder here with -4 as the forecasted temperature and about to get lower in the evening when it will start to snow again till the next day. No time for us to lose though as we need to hurry down to the factory to check out the embroidery machines

White scenery all around
Again, I totally could not recognize the place anymore as it has developed leaps and bounds over the 2.5 years since I last came. The place the factory in has been developed into a science park-ish location with the country's top research facility being built around this area. Next to the factory of our supplier is China's money counterfeiting prevention centre where they research new technology to keep counterfeiters away... but not like it helps much though with all the counterfeiting rage in Southern China.

Unluckily we weren't able to stay for the night in Beijing and had to leave for Wu Han in the evening so that we could visit another factory tomorrow.

Nonetheless, we managed to fit in time to eat our dinner at the airport for a sucky meal that's twice more expensive than Macdonalds or KFC, Bleh!

1. Tasteless beef with onions
2. Tasteless stir fried prawns
3. Sucky & oily vegetables
4. Cold and hard fruits
5. Good ol plain rice

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Day 4 - Zhu Ji

We went to this city famous for its embroidery machines just 100KM+- of Yi Wu city by taxi to re-visit one of our old machine supplier to check out how far they have progressed so far for the new machine models.

Turns out this place has changed a lot since i last visited it in mid 2006. They even already have a 6 star hotel built here and it looks more like a city rather than a village now.

1 thing i really have to praise the Chinese is they build things really fast like on steroids. The highway was very nicely built and laid and the journey was really smooth. I really hope Indonesia can learn something from China....

It's even colder here than Yi Wu as it is still not very populated yet, there are even still some shades of it's old village-ish state.

Just beside the factory

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Day 3 - Yi Wu

Damn those weather forecast sms service who said the temperature in Yi Wu here is 8 to 4. It's more like -4 to -8 instead. Even Japan's Hokkaido is not as cold as it is here. And we actually walked around 3 full hours visiting shops in this weather.

For a brief explanation, in Yi Wu here you can find all and i mean ALL "Made in China" (small items only though) products ranging from electronic items, hardware to accessories and flowers. It's dubbed the city of small items (小商品城) and in here you'll find people of all countries.


On the plane from Guangzhou to Yi Wu, it was like a plane of united nations representatives. Seeing this, indeed nowadays we can't live without China and so is the opposite true.

One thing i learnt today is when trying to hail taxis in peak period and in cities where the taxi to human population ratio is very low, you have to offer more than you usually pay. We hailed a cab which was not planning to go to the direction of our hotel and offered him twice the fare which he would have usually gotten and he relented in an instant. On the way he picked up another passenger, an Iraqi which i could see that he knew how to play the rules of taking taxis here. The taxi demanded 10RMB and the Iraqi replied "Okay, 5RMB okay" a few times before the taxi driver gave up, lol.

Our hotel room
Our hotel room 2

I promise pictures to be up when i get to another hotel in our next stop, Wuhan... hopefully

Monday, February 16, 2009

Day 2 - Guangzhou

What a day, I felt like i had ran a marathon at the end of it after 8 hours of non stop walking and standing.

But at the end of the day, i felt really good with the stuff i bought. Guangzhou is really a paradise for electronic stuff. In this place 岗顶 located at the 天河 region, there are like 5-6 SLS-ish building side by side each other making this officially the largest electronic/computer store area in the world imo. I came away with electronic stuff at 15-20% off the prices in Singapore.

Earlier in the afternoon I also visited the local watch city which houses the world's supplier for branded replica watches. They really almost had every model you could look for and even had a self made book that attempted to make it look real by using Japanese language. But anyone who understand Japanese would know that it's just gibberish writing which makes no sense at all. But you really have to applaud the Chinese in China here for their business sense and acumen.

Too bad the internet here in Yi Wu is really bad at connecting to certain sites especially image uploading sites. So i can't update the pics till at least when i reach Beijing.

Nonetheless, I'll continue some more tips to help anyone who is planning to visit here.

1) Bargain at least half the price they state to make sure you aren't getting ripped off... that bad. You'll probably end up paying 60-70% of what they originally quote you which is still not that bad.

2) Double check and triple check whatever you buy to make sure it works before paying. You'll not want to waste time travelling to the store again the next day or worse, returning to your country before realising it doesn't work.

3) You pay for what you get especially in China. If you want to be safe, make sure to go for the more popular brand instead of the unpopular local brand. And it's better to choose the product that you want, then bargain for it instead of asking for recommendations based on price as you'll probably end up with an inferior product.

Okay, that's it for shopping guides that i personally learnt when buying stuff here. Let's hope you don't make as much mistakes as i did :)

Cheap cheap USB drives
Dim Sum time with Kong Fu tea

Unfortunately, i don't have time to post all the stuffs i bought :p

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Day 1 - Guangzhou

Just reached the hotel and checked-in now. Luckily had a good sleep on board the flight, so off I am to go sightseeing and shopping in GZ.

Just a note, the SIA girls on the GZ flight looks way better than those on the Jakarta flight. Some are even flirtatious, no wonder the scandals involving them.

Breakfast on board SIA


Back at the hotel after a whole day of walking around Guangzhou city.

Found out lots of things about the city and her people that i never knew about on my last 2 visits here.

1) Contrary to people's belief, people here are actually nice. I saw 1 guy who gave away a balloon to a crying kid in MacDonalds to stop him from crying. People giving up seats on the train (MRT) is quite a common sight and almost instantaneously. The people here are quite loud when talking so don't mistake that as being rude.

Speaking of the train, i finally got the chance to ride on 1 this time and was amazed at what they were using to pass thru the gantry instead of stored value cards like Ezlinks. By the way, the trains here are generally much faster and cheaper than taxis so you may want to check out nearest train terminals closest to your destination.

Button like chip that works the same way as an ezlink or stored value card
2) People here can't queue. Lol i know this is an irony considering i just wrote something good about the people. They just love to cut queues like it is their favourite pastime. 1 tip for those queueing up at fast food restaurants, is that here they look to queue horizontally and not vertically. So if you see someone standing by the side of the counter, do not think anymore, he will cut your queue if you don't show that you are not letting him do it either by making eye contact or moving closer up the queue.

3) Pay attention to the Y100 bills that you pay to taxi drivers, shopkeepers etc. Try to remember the serial and make sure it is the same Y100 note if they claim they have no change or the bill is torn/defaced. There are lots of fake notes circulating so do take care.

I'll post where to get what stuff in Guangzhou tomorrow when i finally start to shop. Oh and that wonderful Dim Sum restaurant as well when i go there tomorrow.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

China Trip

My schedule is set as follow. *edited as the agency didn't book the tickets fast enough. so we are now on waiting list for the original schedule.

13th Feb Jakarta - Singapore, arriving in the noon

14th Feb Singapore - Guangzhou, early morning flight

21st Feb Guangzhou - Singapore, arriving noon

22nd Feb Singapore - Jakarta, evening flight.

Can't wait to see old friends again after 2 months break
(*^ ^*)

Also many electronic items to get as it's much more expensive here !

Monday, February 2, 2009

Pa rr te y !!

Believe it or not (mostly not, i know you guys bah), my dad has given me the license to drive on the road alone ^____ ____^

Now i can finally drive to anywhere I want in peace without having my mom nag me by the side. I will be driving the Honda CR-V till it breaks down before they'll change it for something else presumably as the car is 4-5 years old already.

Now now where should i go this weekend :p