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Saturday, September 20, 2008

my National Service stint part 2

sorry for the long wait..

i was waiting for my friends to e-mail me more pictures..
and they are still not in my hands yet.. sigh..
so i shall just go ahead with the pictures i have..

what should i be typing here?
or where do i start? *wonders*
WARNING: loooooong post ahead!!!

if you don't already know..
my camp is called Kem Jugra.. *click here to see*
and it's located in Banting, Selangor.. very near huh?
why didn't you visit me then? T__T

it's ok.. i made more new friends there.. =P

basically for the first week..
we did nothing more than eat, sleep and talk..
life that week was relaxing and boring at the same time..
do you know it feels like not having any access to
the outside world other than using mobile phones?
bear in mind, the line there was terrible!
so it was quite annoying not having internet connections..

i really did miss watching my drama series..
and looking at my oh-so-H.O.T. Chun..
especially each time i open my locker door!
those who have been into my room should know why! XD

that was back then.. but i got used to it a while later.. haha..

in camp, guy trainees are known as Wira..
while the girls are called Wirawati..
i supposed it meant heroes and heroins?
the trainers are called Cikgu..
for those with higher posts we call them Tuan..

we sing this song, Wira Wirawa
ti every morning!

anyway, this is my timetable for weekdays in camp:

5.45am: on dorm lights, start to wake everyone else up
yes, this is my job every morning..
if i overslept, so will my group members.. haha..

6.30am: line up at the Padang Markas and exercise
trainees start to arrive later as time passed..
every day we saw people doing push-ups.. usually the guys!
initially we did a lot of running in the mornings..
as in one big round outside the camp!
sometimes it's Senam Seni which is exercise with music on!
i had good stamina then..
but on 3rd month, it rained nearly every morning..
so it meant longer bed time and "tau fu fa" returned! XD

7.30am: breakfast in the canteen
8am: dorm cleaning session on Fridays cos of spot checks
sleeping session for the rest of the days.. haha..
9am-10.30am: classes
10.30am: eating time during break
11am-12.30pm: classes
the modules includes Character Building and Kenegaraan..

12.30pm: lunch time
2pm: physical activities in the Open Hall
4.30pm: tea time
5.30pm: sports
6.30pm: dinner time
8.30-10pm: religious classes on Thursdays and Fridays
9pm: gather at the Open Hall for other days
10.30pm: supper
11pm-12am: bedtime (which changes everyday)

on Saturdays and Sundays we can wake up slightly later..
as we gather only at 7am.. doing some light exercises..
we don't have classes on weekends..
sometimes we have talks on Saturday mornings..
i don't know what they do from noon till the evenings..
Buddhists go to the temple known as 东禅寺 in Jenjarom..

at the temple, we meet trainees from Kem PLKN Paya Indah..
where we have prayers for the first hour..
continued by all sorts of talks.. thankfully one talk per visit!
after that we get to have vegetarian dinner..
i usually eat a lot here cos there are more choices..
and it's Chinese food, much tastier than those in camp..=P

the lovely and huge Buddha statue we pray every week..

me doing calligraphy? it's called 抄经..

the first time we ate there, we ate in this really quiet hall..
where we were supposed to finish whatever served to us..
a plate with 3 dishes, soup and rice.. using just chopsticks!
you know how i suck at them? i couldn't scoop my rice! T_T
no talking or eye-contact to others, just focus on eating..
it's not a mental torture according to the sifu..
it's for us to relax our minds and eat happily.. WALAO!

luckily we got to eat by the stairs from that week on..
both camps take turns to serve and wash plates!
usually the guys set the buffet-liked table..
while the girls washed like more than 100 plates, bowls,
utensils and the metal containers used to store our food..
guess how we washed? the kampung style..
with 4 big pails filled with water, one with washing liquid!
there's once we tried to switch jobs.. lots of "arguments".. =P

books on Buddhism.. lend it from me to read ok?

anyway, talking about classes..
after every module which takes about a week to a month..
we have to do some performances in front of everyone..
i missed the CB one cos i was on leave for my interview..

the 2nd performance was for Kebudayaan..
i wore baju kurung that day for the first ever time in my life!
but unfortunately there's no photos of it..
cos Cikgu Radi, some teacher from outside the camp..
who happened to be my class teacher and photographer..
promised that he would send us the CD of the photos..
2 months have passed and yet no news.. sigh..

colourful books for our classes..

but i do have a picture of me in sari..
we had our first meeting with our camp commandant
and we are supposed to wear baju kebangsaan..
so another first time for me.. all in a week! haha..
that night, we got discuss our likes and dislikes with him..
Major Zainol bin Awang is a very friendly guy..
wonder why the teachers are afraid of him?

L-R: me, Baagis, Buanes and Ching Yi

the next first time is.. *drum rolls*
it'll be my last time too unless i decide to join the army..
yes, it is about the gun i have held.. M-16!

M-16.. the lightest gun ever made! quite heavy for me la..

we had theory lesson taught by people from the army..
we took down notes as they talked about the gun
and safety measures when holding the gun..
we were told that every gun has a ghost with it..
so we cannot point the gun at anyone unnecessarily..
the bullet can go as fast as 990.6 mss! whoa~

we get practice holding the gun without any bullets first..

the next morning, the whole camp in 5 buses headed to
Lapang Sasar Jugra, the shooting range..
we are the first camp in Malaysia to shoot for this batch..
on 29th July 2008, a Tuesday.. nice!!

i am the 8th shooter from Retail 18..
and we get to shoot 20 live bullets each.. woo hoo!
each of us have a guide with us.. from the army of cos..
no fitting in the bullets or setting the gun to semi-auto..

all we did was aim and shoot.. just like in the picture..

there's no picture of me with the gun though.. =(((
which is pretty sad cos it's a once in a lifetime thing..
my phone was kept away and i didn't bring a camera..
so i'll just keep a photographic memory of the experience!

anyway i scored 75 out of 100 points..
second highest among the girls, Bulat scored 85 points..
while the top shooter is a guy from Bravo with 95 points!
he must have missed the first bullet only.. geng!

before kayak-ing and rakit-ing, we had water confidence!
which meant wearing safety jackets and shoes
and jump right into the lake.. it was fun! XD
after getting to practice kayak and rakit few times..
we had an inter-company water competition..
it was a very tiring, fun and body-aching day.. haha..

we also had to go through Kembara Halangan..
go over the vault, climbing over a 3 meter wall,
walk on a high wall, do the monkey rack and Tarzan jump
and finally the commando crawl..
so obviously most of us got dirty, especially girls.. haha..
only like 3 girls made through all the challenges cleanly!

Wirajaya, where we camped overnight in Bukit Jugra..
is my least favourite among physical activities.. reasons?
i went for a seminar in KL (more about it later)
and by the time we climb up the hill which took an hour..
it was already 9pm, freaking dark and i saw cemetry.. err..

Cikgu Wati didn't allow us to take partcos we are "too tired"..
so all i did there was eat packet food and slept on a slope..
and next morning climb to the top of Bukit Jugra..
to take a good look at KL.. Kuala Langat, that is.. haha

i climbed all the way up with a heavy backpack without help..
to not set up tents, or learn first aid stuff, no picture taking,
no games, no jungle trekking in the dark.. nothing at all! =(

Kem PLKN Jugra went green too!
each company was assigned to a plot of land..
we had to do gardening and water them daily..
Charlie's sawi grew the fastest.. no pictures though..

ploughed the soil with our bare hands.. =)

for the community service module..
i had experience twice only! they should organise more..
the very first was visiting Institut Latihan Perindustrian..
the blue building 5 minutes from camp..
they introduced their programmes.. boring~
provided food and we visited part of the campus.. that's it..

next visit was to Tabika Perpaduan Banting..
it is a very small kindergarten with 25 kids and 2 teachers..
but it needed a lot of bush-clearing, new coat of paint
and decorations for merdeka celebration..
we trainees did all those.. plus play with the kids..
it was oh-so-lovely! no pictures though..

the third visit was to the handicapped children home..
but i didn't go cos i was home for hungry ghost festival..
i heard the press was there.. aww.. missed it!

we also participated in other activities outside camp too..
like a visit to Royal Malaysian Police exhibition in Jenjarom..
it was some anti-crime campaign.. weapons were scary..
the dog-sniffing-out-for-drugs show was the best!

another one was a seminar on Human Resources..
it was held in MATRADE Exhibition and Convention Centre..
and officiated by Dato' Dr Ng Yen Yen..
the 2-day event made us leave camp at 6am..
and arrive back at camp around 8pm due to traffic jams!

this is MATRADE in KL.. looks pretty nice to me..=)

with the event poster..

with Dato' Dr Ng Yen Yen

the seminar was conducted mostly in English..

L-R: penghuluwati Mira, Bravo assistant head Nana and me..

my Daddy and Mummy in camp: Cikgu Azami and Cikgu Wati

they are not married to each other, why do i call them that?
Daddy cos he's the head of Charlie company..
anything to do with Charlie, he's in charge..
Mummy cos she's very motherly, strict and very loud! haha..

we participated in Perhimpunan Siswa Merdeka 2008!
it was held in Stadium Tertutup Nilai..
basically we are like cheerleaders for an entire day..
rehearsals after rehearsals and then the actual event..
we used pom-poms, handkerchiefs, flags and a big hand!
good exercise for our hands.. haha

have a look at the event.. took from YouTube..

we also had Malam Gemilang Kem PLKN Jugra..
to celebrate the victory of our volleyball team..
our girls are the champion in the entire Malaysia! =))))
and we had seni budaya performances too..

Kem PLKN Jugra volleyball teams..

not forgetting Malam Penghayatan Kemerdekaan..
5 teachers from Dewan Bahasa and Pustaka (DBP)
taught us about Malay literature for 3 days..
and i was to perform sajak "Anak Jiran Tionghua"
together with Chai Fen.. scary for a first-timer! haha..
and guess what? i won a hamper!!
for being the best non-Malay presenter.. shocking?

oh ya, we were supposed to perform senam-seni
in Stadium Tertutup Titiwangsa on 5th Sept 2008..
it was for some Rakan Cop thingy together with
the closing ceremony for PLKN Kumpulan 3/ Siri 5 2008..
but then they canceled our performance at the last minute!
as in right before we were due to perform!!!

screw the organisers and Najib who is the VIP for the event..
all our preparation, anticipation and starvation
for entire 3 days was for nothing?
it was just an 8-minute performance..
you heartless people could have bloody waited..
we left our camp at 6am and arrive at 4pm, 3 days in a row..
with only 2 tiny packets of noodles for 9 hours..
thinking about it.. all those tears.. ishhh..

anyway, CHARLIE (my team) is the overall CHAMPION!!!
plenty of hampers to open during the last night at camp!
we got to hold and kiss the trophy cos we had to return it..

our flag.. during the painting in process.. haha

my prizes from camp: silver for kayak double,
silver for marching and Outstanding Wirawati.. =)

i kinda miss looking at this on the door to my dorm..

i miss these.. cos i don't have to think of what to wear!

but not the food.. this is our last buka puasa dinner!

washing dishes for the last time in camp.. hehe

overall my National Service stint is like a holiday camp..
not the army-like camps in other countries like Singapore!
you get to know more about other cultures,
be friends with people who you won't mix with elsewhere..
spend time with the same people for the entire 3 months,
slim down due to the not-so-delicious food,
have good stamina cos you need to move around a lot,
be more confident of yourself , learn how to cooperate,
and tolerate weird behaviours of others.. haha..

if you want to see more pictures, come over to my house..
cos they are in a photo album! no soft-copies.. hehe..

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