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Straighten Crooked Teeth With No Pain or Braces

Do you have an odd looking tooth jutting out or inverted (recessed)? Is one or more of your teeth crooked or misaligned? Do you have stains or marks on your teeth that are beyond repair? Or any broken tooth that robbed you of a beaming smile?? Have you got a gap between your two front teeth? Or constantly aware of your cute Bugs Bunny teeth? Maybe your childhood dentist drove so much fear in you that you vowed never to visit one again? Let me offer you a respite, you can have a set of wonderful looking teeth again without breaking your bank account no matter how impossible you think it is done.

Gone are the days where extract-happy dentists freely rule your jaw as they are no more with the emergence of bright, cheery and friendly women dentists who would make you feel at ease with their assuring conversations with you as you go through normal procedures. I have known Dr. Fauziah, or Fay as we fondly call her, for good number of years since we went diving but only began my dental appointments with her since 2010. She had made known to me about this procedure called composite veneer makeover but I’d put it at the back of my mind until recently when I decided to do it as I was going to represent Malaysia for Samsung to visit Korea sponsored by Korean Tourism Organisation!

Composite bonding or just bonding — which refers to direct composite veneers — is an inexpensive and effective way to restore and correct small chips,  cracks, crookedness and discolouration in the teeth. I’ve had too many teeth grow out at once when I was growing up and removing them caused the other teeth in their position to misalign. Now with this procedure of placing this translucent clay (veneer) on the tooth enamel that has been roughen by polish and bonding agent applied, Fay shaped this clay-like veneer over each tooth that’s crooked and aligned it to make the row flush with the rest of the teeth in proper positon. Then UV light is zapped onto the tooth after applying the final polish to set the veneer to harden. She did this with each tooth till the jaggedness is as even as possible.

She spent about 15 minutes on each tooth and after about 2 hours, I could beam with a smirk from ear to ear because I finally have sorted out my imperfection with this perfect method! This minimally invasive method does not remove any teeth (which is permanent) and is built around my jawline, and it’s almost instant,  which was one of the deciding factors for me. The best thing about it is, Fay and her team of dentists have been restoring people’s smiles for years and their expertise is rivalled by no other. When other dentists charge an arm or a leg to have you do a crowning at RM1,800 per tooth, composite veneer only costs RM400 per tooth, a figure afforded by many more.

This brilliant procedure is for you if you have any of the following:-

Spaces between the teeth.
Poorly shaped or crooked teeth.
Broken or chipped teeth.
Permanently externally stained and/or internally stained teeth.
Unsightly or stained fillings.

You can improve your appearance by having this composite veneer makeover but it cannot change your jawline or give you orthodontic help. It’s suitable for anyone who doesn’t want to spend a few years of their adulthood in braces but want to have an almost perfect, aligned set of teeth!

You can find Fay & her special team of dentists at www.drfauziah.com and do tell her that you read it here at pummkin.net! Her clinics are at Publika & Jalan Raja Laut but if you want to see her, she would be at Publika. Here’s to a new life with painlessly straightened teeth!!!

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My smile makeover!

Protect Your Credit Cards & Identity From Thieves

Ever since I read about identity thieves using RFID (radio frequency identification), I’d been shopping around for a wallet that contains RFID-blocking properties. What exactly is RFID? According to this Wiki, “Radio-frequency identification (RFID) is the wireless use of electromagnetic fields to transfer data, for the purposes of automatically identifying and tracking tags attached to objects. The tags contain electronically stored information. Some tags are powered by electromagnetic induction from magnetic fields produced near the reader. Some types collect energy from the interrogating radio waves and act as a passive transponder. Other types have a local power source such as a battery and may operate at hundreds of meters from the reader. Unlike a barcode, the tag does not necessarily need to be within line of sight of the reader, and may be embedded in the tracked object.”

This simply means, anyone with an RFID reader/tracker who comes close (or not, depending on tracking device) to your wallet containing credit cards & ATM cards, they may steal vital information and access to your identity (and bank account) within seconds. Pacsafe has a range of RFID-blocking bags & packs, built with anti-theft features such as slashguard wire mesh woven into the bag and slashproof straps and temper-proof zips.

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Tatonka Euro Wallet with RFID Blocker

Getting around in Frankfurt & scouring around to look at equipment in their outdoor shops, I found Globetrotter, a 5 -storey trekkers’ haven, that stocks the most comprehensive solutions to camping, trekking, hiking, kayaking & climbing located at the East end of Frankfurt. Here, I found a range of Pacsafe bags amongst other big names in outdoor equipment & bought the Stashsafe100 GII in Midnight Blue, a hip pack with built in anti-theft features & RFID-blocker. I also bought a Tatonka RFID Block wallet for days I don’t need to use the hip pack.

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Pacsafe Stashsafe 100 GII hip pack

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Inside of main compartment.

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Comes with a lock/keys and slash proof strap!

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5 storey of excitement!

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Bags! Globetrotter has all kinds of backpacks!

To think that Malaysia is the first country to adopt the smart passport system, using RFID technology in 1998, our passports are vulnerable to identity fishing. Whenever I fly, I always have this insecurity about falling asleep & waking up to a ransacked bag. With a hip pack that is lockable on your body, zips that can be secured from opening & straps that are slashproof, I doubt anyone would want to attempt to remove/grab it from me but the added peace of mind of knowing that they can’t is already worth the money paid for. If you travel as much as I do, get the Pacsafe Stashsafe100 GII anti-theft hip pack. You would be glad to walk around the streets of South East Asian cities with the knowledge that nothing would fall out of your bag if it gets slashed neither could anyone pry the bag off you.

Osteoarthritis (OA) in Youngsters?

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My daily intake.

When people hear of arthritis, they usually have pictures of old people in their mind but the onset of Osteoarthritis (OA) can strike anyone between 20 to 40 years of age. Falling into this age category as an active sports person, I have had an old injury recur twice recently, immobilising me on one of my dive trips. The only relief I got was being in the water as I became weightless then. Symptoms of this possible onset of OA include joint pain, tenderness, stiffness, locking and ‘crackling’ of joints caused by loss of cartilage by the wear & tear of the joints. Sharp pains shot right down my legs and upon returning to KL, I went to see my chiropractor immediately. He adjusted my hip & pushed it back into socket and I rested for two weeks before I prepared for my China expedition.

OA is associated with the breakdown of cartilage in joints, commonly occurring int eh weight-bearing joints of the hips, knees & spine although it can affect other areas too. What is this cartilage? Think of it as the shock absorbers in between your joints that give the spongy cushioning that it deserves. When that wears off, the grinding of the bones will cause pain & a lot of discomfort. I had to find alternatives to not suffer such severe pains when my hip occasionally falls out of socket from my vigorous activities so I sought the advice of a scientist he told me to up the dosage of my supplements from 500mg to 1,500mg per day for the first 3 months before regulating a lesser dose daily. I’m now on the 3rd week of taking Livewell Ostesamin that contain glucosamine sulphate & MSM (methylsulfonylmethane) supplements which has helped me control the mortifying pain & allowed me to carry on my usual active lifestyle. If my body is wearing away cartilage, what about the older folks? Cartilage repair is even slower amongst seniors and the only way is to take supplements as they may not have the luxury of hip replacement surgeries.

Keeping my weight in check is another crucial factor in preventing further effects of OA. The heavier you are, the more weight your bones have to carry & whilst our joints degenerate, you wouldn’t want them to work overtime unnecessarily & causing you excruciating pain in the process. I bought a core muscles builder exerciser for me to train and strengthen my core muscles to hold my posture upright, one of the ways of lessening the stress on my spine as the nerves were also pinched when my hip got dislocated. I walk as much as I can & have whole grain carbohydrates, lean protein with lots of vegetables in my diet. If you are overweight, you would definitely benefit from weight loss which would help you ease pressure on your knees. Though I’m not overweight, I have a duty to keep fit for the work that I do and being immobilised by pain is not something I see myself accepting! Yes, though ageing is a part of life that I can accept, what I can’t is if OA sets in. If I can do something to prevent it now, I will give it my all. We cannot prevent ageing but we can slow down the process by living a healthy lifestyle, eating a proper diet & have regular exercise.

Supplements that are really effective include Glucosamine + Chondroitin Sulphate and MSM. You can get them here:-

http://www.livewell2u.com/products.php?p=ostesamin

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Exporting Mail from Mac to Outlook 2011

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I managed to import ALL of my client’s mail from Mail.app to Outlook 2011 flawlessly WITHOUT too much trouble. If you are a Mac user who has decided to use Outlook instead of the built-in proprietary Mail. Follow the steps below as Apple has nestled folders within .mbox & your mail has a ~.elmx (proprietary) extension rather than .mbox (UNIX mail format). Whatever you naysayers say about Outlook, you have either never used the advance features nor have you been on Windows long enough to know how it handles email just the way we like it so I would ignore anyone who tries to discourage you from getting onto Outlook. Microsoft may ‘dysfunctional’ in their OS but they have full-featured softwares like Project, Publisher & Outlook that some people deem ireplicable so let’s get on with the problem.
 
Apple has hidden the Library folder in Lion & Mountain Lion OSX to prevent accidental access by newbies so you need to access it in Finder.
 

  1. Download the emlx converter to mbox app here. Run the app.
  2. Go to Finder, in the tab under Go, press ALT/Option to show Library folder, select it & go to Mail folder.
  3. Copy any ~.mbox files to a folder on your Desktop. You don’t want to mess with the original file.
  4. Go to folder on your Desktop, click on INBOX.mbox, select your folder till it opens to show folders titled 2, 3, 4…..etc.
  5. Click on each of these folders till it shows files with .emlx.
  6. Select ALL & drag them to the EMLXConverter but don’t start the conversion yet.
  7. Do this with each of the 2, 3, 4, 5 titled folders & add to the converter so that it would convert & place them into Outlook as one folder.
  8. Click Convert.
  9. In Outlook, select Import & choose ‘Contacts & messages from a text file’
  10. Select ‘Import messages from an MBOX-format text file.’ Choose your converted file & you will have a folder entitled, ‘Mbox’ in your Outlook. Click on the folder, select all the messages & drag them to ‘Inbox.’
  11. Do the same from item No. 4 onwards for your SENT.mbox to be converted & imported into Outlook.

 
I spent hours looking for a solution using different search criteria until I found a conversation thread in a Microsoft Community & it was Garret Mickelson who posted it. I reckon I didn’t need to register as I wouldn’t be communicating in a Windows forum since I switched OS 6 years ago. Meanwhile, I’ve converted all my mail from my Entourage app to Outlook using the inbuilt import feature. Took about half an hour for I have many mailboxes that I manage. I hope this would help solve all your frustration & let you use your favourite app after becoming a Mac user!

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Taking Your Smartphone Underwater

Spending in access of RM1,000 for your smartphone, warrants a smarter solution to protect it especially if you are going out to sea. How often have you been caught in a situation where you wished your phone (which has doubled up as your camera) was waterproof or robust? Salt water is especially corrosive & keeping it inside a big dry bag with all your other stuff may cause you to miss precious moments around you so how do you protect your phone from accidental slips into the sea or splashes that might short-circuit it?

I got a chance to take my Galaxy Note underwater (before acquiring the Sony Xperia Z1) & I tested the Dicapac DCP-WP-C2 casing that allowed me to operate the touchscreen whilst in the water. My favourite online camera shop, Shashinki, sells it for only RM80 & delivered right to your doorstep! There’s a selection of Green, White, Blue, Yellow & Pink casing & it’s no brainer which one I picked! So I decided to take it skin-diving with me!

I snorkelled to where the reefs sloped to about 8 metres deep & all the while, I can operated the touchscreen through the thick bubble atmosphere the casing created when I locked the zip-lock top. The air pocket created space between the screen & the casing. On the surface, I could still touch the ‘shutter button’ on the screen but once I nose-dived down to 8 metres depth, the pressure flattened the air space & I couldn’t ‘touch’ the screen again. The casing is rated to 10 metres, which to most users, is more than enough waterproofing. Not a problem as I could turn it to video & take screenshots later. Little did I know that I had filmed the video upside down because I was inverted! Here are some shots taken with the smartphone in the Dicapac casing in the water below the surface & at 8 metres.

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Just adjusted the levels of the picture, no other edits.

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Birds eye view from below the surface.

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The house reef in Tenggol!

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See my fins beneath the surface?

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At the drop-off, I managed to take a picture….

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Yours truly staring at the phone…..

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With the supplied lanyard, I never have to worry about misplacing my phone on the boat & if you drop it in the sea, it floats!

P.S. – Also good for situations where you run the risk of getting sprayed by water cannons…… 😉

Check out their range of Dicapac casings that fit your smartphone!

Celcom iPhone 5 Raya Deal

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With the Hari Raya celebrations coming up, have you thought of treating yourself to a new gadget? All you need to do is sign up with a Celcom First Data mPro Plus plan at RM88/month (24-month contract).

Now, Celcom is giving you an exclusive Raya deal you just can’t miss. From 11 July – 15 September 2013, you can get a brand new iPhone 5 from just RM1,488!

Here’s what you get with the Celcom First Data mPro Plus plan:-

  • Low monthly commitment fee of only RM88/month
  • Special price on the iPhone 5 at only RM1,488 (Retail price is RM2,199)
  • 5GB data volume monthly
  • FREE 60 mins & 60 SMS (Additional usage: 15 sen/min/SMS)

What better way to start your Raya celebrations than with an exciting new gadget to capture the mood of the festivity when you ‘balik kampung!’ Staying connected with your loved ones is just a button away & don’t forget to post your rendang tok, ketupat, dodol conquests to share with your network of friends online! With the widest coverage on the fastest network in Malaysia, Celcom makes sure you won’t have to miss a tweet, forego an Instagram or fast Facebook!

Visit any Blue Cube or Celcom Xclusive to enjoy this privilege today! For more information, you can find it online here.

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F.U.D. – We Can Pee Like Boys Now

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My childhood dream aspiration of becoming a boy has become a reality now after facing numerous challenges in filthy,  tight & uncompromising lavatories when I am travelling. It’s annoying when you carry a backpack of stuff, be it your camera gear or your daypack of essentials, entering a public loo is so indignifying. Especially those that haven’t been cleaned in a century or those that have lost sight of care. I can’t count the number of times where I cringed before peeing, having to hover over soiled toilet seats while taking extra precautions NOT to come into contact with the equally dirty walls on my backpack. 

As I was kitting up for my Survivalist Sack, I came upon this Female Urination Device called P Ez. It seems to be the solution to all my on-the-go urgency problems so I ordered one & two months later it arrived. Perfect for my 10-day expedition in Borneo. Being somewhat excited at the thought that I’d finally be standing up to pee, a flurry of thoughts came to my mind. What if I pee all over myself? What if I made a mess of my bathroom? What if it DOESN’T WORK??? I guess these are the angst of one who’s finally getting a feel of what being a boy is all about. As a child, I used to aspire to be a boy. Now don’t ask me why, perhaps it was due to the clothes my mom made me wear as a toddler or the fact that I loved playing with gadgets that don’t go well with my sisters or just being plain curious about the opposite sex. Either way, I wanted an appendage. 

So it arrived. I opened the box with glee. I was greeted with a misshaped lilac coloured funnel that I’m supposed to put on my cherry. I examined the rubbery plastic thing for awhile & proceeded to enact a ‘travel situation’ where my back has a camera backpack, me wearing pants & this bionic cuckoo bird being whipped out from my waistpack. Having to figure out which way is ‘outward’ is easy. Just look at how it points & you will know how to position it to your body. 

The moment of truth came. I’ve never had to touch any of my body parts when answering nature’s call & this is a rather absurd act as we girls have never thought about putting our hands onto our cherries to direct the shower of our power. So okay, here goes…….the funnel is pointing to the bowl & I’m ready to go…….the initial spout was fine when I got the aim right but as soon as it started to trickle, it trickled everywhere!!! How do you men deal with sprinkling when you’re tinkling??? Now don’t you ever leave the washroom WITHOUT washing your hands & appendage because now I know what you are down to. By the time I finished, my toilet bowl rim was splattered with pee & though I felt triumphant having DONE it like a boy, I had to clean my toilet bowl, the floors & also disinfect the area around it! Good thing I had the seat up too! So much effort! I felt I need more practice over this bionic cuckoo if I were to master the use for my Borneo expedition! This kinda explains why boys need a lifetime to become men & even then, can’t get their aim right. 

The instruction says I have to wash the device with warm soapy water & air dry. Having wet wipes & sanitiser ready helps if water is not available. I washed it & put it near the window to dry. This appendage will be handy if I go into the wild & when I have to go. 

The upside is, I now would not need to ‘hover’ above the toilet bowl when there’s a germ infested toilet seat (or there’s an absence of one) & would be delighted to pee in the jungle without having my bottom pricked by shrubs & twigs! 

The other option is to use TravelJohn™ Disposable Urinal in situations where you can’t find a lavatory at all. Those who have been there & experienced that would know what a God-sent items these urinal devices are. Get the TravelJohn™ at Lafuma & P Ez on eBay by searching for ‘female urination device.’

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Survivalist Sack – Part 1

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My survivals stash – one part

Have you thought about what you would do in an event of an emergency? Are you prepared for a disaster, whether natural or man-made? Do you know first aid? Can you do CPR? Can you save yourself & then get back to your family to get them to safety? Living in an urban setting in a modernised age has suppressed our survival instincts & defied logic of any possibility of intrusion, uprising or insurgencies. In this day & age, why should we prepare for ‘war?’ Let’s not get so far, what about the word UNREST? In my parent’s & grandparents’ days, they survived the war & May 13, 1969 to tell me stories but as I grew up, I noticed that we tend to associate those war stories to that of what’s depicted in the movies & dismiss any notion of it happening again. Disaster can strike when you least expect it & usually with no warning so preparation in advance will help everyone in your family to know what to do when something happens. Other countries may have zombie apocalypse/doomsday/bug-out preparation, we should have our own.

I sought the advice of my King Scout compatriot friend ala outdoor instructor, Adrian Chin who took me on many jungle & adventure pursuits in the past. He showed me his emergency bag of essentials which was equipped with tools & survival equipment to keep him alive for at least 3 days before getting to more help if needed. The Survivalist Sack (pummkinology), similar to a Bug-Out Bag (BOB) in America, which is actually a ‘disaster-relief bag,’ where you pack all your essentials to grab in a haste to escape & run off into the jungle (or wild) to seek refuge/survive till the coast is clear again. It could be in an event of a natural disaster like an earthquake, a tsunami, a flood, a landslide (an avalanche is unlikely here because we don’t have snow in Malaysia), or any other possibilities of ‘Martians’ (or foolhardy sultanates claiming territorial rights while their kinship avenge their defeat) taking over our gardens. In hindsight, we should prepare for a meteor hit like the recent one for if had changed directions & hit us instead of the Russians, we may be blasted into South China Sea. This is just stretching it. Who’s to say what might happen? Who knows if we would have an insurgency of Neptunians or Plutonians who in the course of a universe convention decided to leave the coalition of planets in their orbits to come into ours. Heaven forbids these far-off aliens to land when there are already so many aliens amongst us.

Well, as one of my workshop speakers Mr. Bose said, ‘History has taught us that the Portuguese came & conquered, the Dutch came & conquered, the Japanese & British too. It shows that anyone can come & conquer!’ Hmm……he may be right. Militians (Martians amongst us) can go rogue. Let’s just use the recent insurgency in Lahad Datu as an example for us to be equipped in the eventuality of a similar uprising here. Though I have full confidence in the ability of the armed forces & the police force where 8 of the policemen & 2 army soldiers lost their lives in a battle & ambush, as a responsible citizen, we have to be armed with the knowledge of how to survive in the wild before help reaches you. We are far too dependent upon modern gadgets, all of which require energy/electricity to power up. We have tablets that are not for swallowing, iPads that can’t be used for periods, smartphones that can only be smart when it’s got a data plan. What if the telecommunication towers get jammed? You wanna send smoke signals? Morse code maybe? Or use your loud hailer???

I would like to be prepared myself for the sake of the ones whom I happen to be around at the time of crisis.

Three things to keep in mind when preparing for your kit. You need WATER, SHELTER & FIRE. You can live 3 days without water & 3 weeks without food so food is not really vital when you have the tools to pluck fruits, hunt or fish. You need shelter from the elements. If you have run off into the jungle, you need rain protection. We don’t call it a rainforest for nothing. Dampness can leave you feeling chilly & though we live in the tropics, it’s good to have some kind of rain jacket with you.

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My survivals stash other part.

I’ve taken the liberty to kit out my Survivalist Sack with more technical help from the shop & I will teach you what each item is for. Presenting the worse case scenario, you will at least have an idea what each tool can function as, not just for the intended purpose of its design. Here’s a list of things which you should acquire in your Survivalist Sack to keep in your car should an occurrence of any sort take place where you are, you can access the bag & get away. Plan it to your requirement. If you have kids, factor them in. If your kids are big enough to have a bag of their own, kit them up too. If you pack food items, remember they have a shelf life & it would be good for you to take this bag out to practice using it in a camp every few months or so.

I went to the Lafuma store in Bangsar to get most of my equipment as I find them to have most things available & they are the best in its class. If you are still asking yourself if you should get kitted up, let me put it this way, your car has a toolbox as a manufacturer’s specification. In the toolbox, you have an emergency signal, a wrench, a jack, some spanners, screwdriver & one of those tools to change tyres. Your car has an emergency kit to protect you & keep you safe so why shouldn’t you have survival tools to keep you alive in an emergency? You worked so hard to have financial security but have you thought of your physical security? Start planning for this sack now.

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When it was still in the shop, I fitted it as best as I could.

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I wanted a bag to be small but enough to carry what the essentials.

1) The Bag – Millet Level 15 Sky Diver Hydration Bag – RM 329
This bag has a 15litre capacity & was selected to fit all these items into it. Everything that’s mentioned here can be fitted into this little bag! My next post covers more paranoia to fit more stuff in bigger bags but when go through this list of stuff, you will know what size of bag you need. The thing to keep in mind is, you must be able to hoist your bag easily with little effort because in an emergency, adrenaline rush can zap you of your energy & you wouldn’t want to be saddled with too big of a bag that drags your mobility/movement.

Though this bag has a zipped hydration compartment, I used it to store elongated items such as the Torch Crank Light from GoalZero, an LED wand, my Light My Fire™ dagger/fire starter, a flexible Platypus plusBottle water container & a foldable stove. In the main compartment, I’ve stuffed a storm shelter, an ultralite towel, disposal toilets for emergencies, a first aid kit, paracord, a mess tin with a Buff™ wear, Power Bars, a CRKT Eat’N Tool spork, a Lifesystem’s™ Survival Shelter, thermal blanket & purification tablets.

In the zippered mesh compartment, I’ve stashed away a Gerber’s 8-piece Survival Kit with rope, tinder, fire starter, a knife, a whistle & a survival booklet. I’ve also put my Petzl e+Lite headlamp which happens to be my favourite gadget in this bag.

In the front of the bag, I’ve attached a walking stick, for some support should I injure myself for whatever reason. The Katadyn bottle is attached with a carabiner & a Knotbone bungee cord to secure any wet attire or towel when on the move. Bags must be of immaculate quality & rated to the tested volume (15L, 30L, 45L & above). If it gives way midway, you will have a trail spluttered with your equipment & that would be the last thing you need to handle. Though Deuter was once the market leader, today there are many fakes & copies sold to resemble the genuine. There are parallel importers who take factory rejects from Vietnam & selling them at a fraction of the price here. Do not go for those because a bag’s durability must have gone through quality assurance during the manufacturing phase & must be able to withstand the vigours of travelling & some abuse. Thankfully, Lafuma & Millet backpacks have no copies…….yet. Being the official representative of Lafuma brand in France, you can be certain that all the bags you get from the store in Bangsar are genuine.

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More about this Millet Level 15 Sky Diver bag in the following description below.

  • Main compartment with U-shaped zip opening
  • Front zipped stretch pocket
  • Document pocket with key ring
  • Zipped compartment for water pouch
  • Side stretch pocket
  • Stretch pockets pole holder
  • BACK/WAISTBELT
  • Highly breathable back system
  • SHOULDER STRAPS
  • Sternum strap + handrest

I wanted everything in this post here to fit inside THIS BAG & it did! You can get a bigger bag if you wish to put in more stuff but that will be addressed in Part 2.

For Water:-

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Katadyn MyBottle Purifier – RM220

Rated as the most rugged, longest lasting microfilter in a bottle in the world. Due to its extreme durability and dependability, Katadyn MyBottle Purifier is the choice of the U.S. military and expeditions as this ingenious drinking bottle has an integrated virus filter. The three-stage water filter is the heart of this perfect outdoor drinking system. It eliminates harmful viruses, bacteria, and protozoa. It enables the purification of drinking water at any time and anywhere. Tested with muddy water & water comes out crystal clear. In extreme situations, it’s best to take your shirt to filter out heavier particles of water before straining it into a container. Then pour this water into the Katadyn MyBottle Purifier and drink. I would add a purification tablet into it just to let the filter have a longer lifespan.

Watch how I used cocoa powder (the kind that you make hot chocolate with) with tap water to simulate sedimentation as it gets filtered in the bottle in my kitchen!

It is only in my kitchen would I be able to test this bottle out by using what’s in my larder. I’m saving the use of this as my survival water bottle & it’s good for 100 litres of filtration. If you are in situations where no other option of clean water source is available, you need to trust your equipment to work for you. Being nicely designed, you can also carry this bottle with you when travelling to places where water source may be a suspect. Instructions booklet is enclosed to prepare the bottle for first use & to disinfect the bottle when you store it for a long period of time. There’s function, form & finesse in this bottle. I would be addressing other alternatives in Part 2.

Puritabs

Water purification tablets to treat water before drinking. In places where even the tap water is from a suspicious source, use one tablet per litre for purification before drinking. Get one box.

For shelter:-

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Lifesystems 2 Person Survival Shelter Bothy

I chose this survival shelter because it’s lightweight & compact & it’s fully waterproof. Perfect for emergency situations where maintaining body heat becomes a key priority, which means sheltering from the wind, rain or snow. Since Malaysia has no snow save for maybe at the peak of Mount Kinabalu, all Lifesystems Mountain Survival products have been tried and tested successfully in extreme conditions. A lightweight survival shelter for up to 3 persons, or 2 people with rucksacks. Works in place of tents if you can’t grab your tent in time to run. Use paracord & Shelter Systems’ Gripclips to attach ropes to the shelter without puncturing or breaking it.

Originally designed as lightweight emergency shelters, they create a surprisingly warm and sheltered internal microclimate. They can also be useful for meal breaks, route planning, map reading or any other situation that requires a warm, sheltered environment. Why is having a shelter important? Besides the obvious, it also gives you a sense of well-being in a strange, open space. When you feel secure, you are less likely to fear & be able to weather out the conditions. The Tough PU coated waterproof fabric has a 2000m hydrostatic head and fully taped seams. The Lifesystems 2 Person Survival Shelter Bothy’s lightweight design with a window and air-vent prevents claustrobia & the presence of reflective top strips for increased visibility. Enclosed within an integral stuff sack with draw cord closure, it is shorter but wider than the water bottle.

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Paracord by Rothco

You need a rope to tie a sheet down for shelter. Sometimes you need to secure things & having a rope with extremely strong construction is necessary. An ideal all-around utility cord in the field, the Rothco Type III commercial paracord is tough and long lasting. The cord is made of 550-pound test nylon and features a seven-strand core for maximum strength. Measuring 5/32 inches in diameter, the paracord is manufactured in the United States by a certified US Government contractor. The paracord is available in several lengths and colours & Lafuma stocks them.

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Hammock – RM95

Very easy to set up & deploy, the hammock can help you take 40 winks without having to clear the forest to pitch a tent. Minimal impact on the environment for all greenies reading this but if you ever need to be in the jungle to evade a Martian-attack, chop whatever you need to chop. God will make things grow again, possibly at speeds that you can never ever imagine. All you need is a mosquito net to keep you protected. If a night’s rest is needed, secure a flysheet overhead to keep out rain. This one is packable into a small enclosed pouch fitted into my little 15litre backpack.

For fire:-

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Light My Fireâ„¢ dagger/fire starter

A two in one knife that functions as a knife & works as a striker to the magnesium rod that’s tucked away in the handle. Having several fire starters in your kit is good for backup purposes in case you lose your main one. Just strike the rod with the back blunt edge of the knife to create spark on tinder (enclosed in the survival kit below).

A proper knife to cut & gut fish, serves also as a weapon of defence should you come across rogue Martians who attempt to outrage your modesty or cross examine you. Carrying a knife with blades in excess of 10cm is an offence in Malaysia unless you give a good reason for doing so, such as for self defence. I don’t know who made these laws but be cautious anyway.

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Gerber Survival 8-piece Kit – RM124

In this little waterproof bag contained in Lightweight Ripstop Nylon Bag with Waterproof Zipper, there’s a Gerber Mini-Paraframe Knife, Emergency Whistle, Fire Starter, Waterproof Matches, Snare Wire, Emergency Cord, Cotton Ball – Fire Tinder & Priorities of Survival – a Pocket Guide that has Bear’s Survival Essentials. On the nylon bag, there’s Land to Air Rescue Instructions. Add in a lighter if you can.

For illumination:-

GoalZero Torch Crank Light (RM130)

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This light has a solar panel for daytime recharging of its internal battery which requires 9 – 10 hours of sunlight for a full charge. The best thing about this light is, it has a hand crank (winder) that would generate 10 minutes of light after a constant 1 minute of winding! The tip of the light has 4 LEDs & the front panel has 18 LEDs for you to illuminate your shelter. There’s a hidden hook too. This is a must-have in your Survivalist Sack. A 12V Male Cigarette Adapter & wall charger is included in this super handy floodlight.

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Inova Microlight XT LED Wand – RM79.90

When you need markers to indicate your presence in the dark, you need this wand. Powered by a small but powerful LED press light which can be removed & clipped on to your zippers, this wand can be used as an emergency signal marker in the dark with 4 functions – high power, low power, strobe & signal mode. Submersible to 150m, it also floats. Use it as a signal beam in a dive or on the surface for the boat to locate you. You can never have too many LED lights. In a panic, you want to be able to reach for any light & this is one nice light to have to mark your position without using too much battery. This one that I have, glows blue!

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ClipLit LED

The Nite Ize ClipLit LED is a bright, water-resistant white light encased in durable, plastic housing and molded to a rugged plastic carabiner clip. Easy to activate—a quick twist turns it on and off—it’s just as easy to clip onto and off of almost anything with a loop. Attach it to your key ring, belt loop, zipper pull, backpack or purse, and you’ll have efficient, bright illumination wherever you are, whenever you want. The ClipLit is perfect for everything from reading fine print to finding a keyhole. And, when it’s attached to your clothing, it’s a fun and stylish way to let people know where YOU are when it’s dark, increasing your visibility and safety. I have a dog & putting one on his collar will allow me to instantly locate where he is if he happens to break free or be off leash. People with anaemia who are prone to passing out should wear this at night as they commute for others to locate them in the dark.

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Petzl e+Lite

This tiny little headlamp is the niftiest headlight I’ve ever seen! Slightly bigger than the size of a USB Flash Drive, there is a strong retractable cord that you pull over your head to allow this headlamp to sit on your forehead. Different modes of brightness plus red LED blinking modes for use at night to not disrupt visibility. Bright enough to illuminate a bedroom in the dark! Perfect to use in situations where you need both your hands free. You’ll never know when you have to crawl into tight spaces like how the Vietcongs did it in Cu Chi Tunnels.

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At the Cu Chi Tunnel in Vietnam, I went in & crawled 60 meters before I got out with a sense of awe for the Vietcongs!

You can never have too many lights.

For preparation of food:-

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Trangiaâ„¢ Mess Tin

A great tin to carry supplies, use as a survival kit or to carry food. This can be doubled up as a pot or pan to cook a light meal. I use it to carry my knick-knacks, compass, Puritabs, spork & spices.

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Power Bars

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A Folding Stove – RM8

A stove that uses solid fuel tablets is necessary to have to boil water or cook your meals. Get one that’s easy to pack away with minimal fuss. I’ve just ordered the White Box Stove™ that uses alcohol to accompany my cookware.

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PlusBottle Platypus Collapsible Water Bottle

A collapsible 1 litre bottle that you can pack away, this Platypus Water Bottle is a storage for extra water if you are far away from a water source. Having several bottles with you will keep you rehydrated till you get to the next water source should it be so scarce.

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CRKT Eat’N Tool

Multitool includes spoon, fork or better known as ‘spork,’ bottle opener, three hex wrenches, and a carabiner. Lots of functionality but weighs only 45gm. Large central hole for grip and to reduce weight. Better than the plastic variety where you can’t use strength to pry a drumstick. I keep this & one other plastic variety in the mess tin to eat with.

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Gerber Suspension Multi Tool – RM190

A multi tool lives up to its name to serve you in a variety of ways & to get you out of situations. Apart from the spring-loaded pliers, it is also a saw, fine edge knife/serrated edge knife, wire cutter, scissors, crosspoint screwdrivers, small and medium flatblade screwdrivers, can opener, bottle opener & a lanyard hole. Brings out the MacGyvette in me. Always have this in easy to reach places & keep it within its holster when not in use. Very handy to scissor cut a packet of instant noodles or a bag of crisps!

For protection from elements:-

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Lifeventure HydroFibre UltraLite Trek Towel – RM139.90

When travelling light, nothings beats having a big towel that wraps into a small package. It rolls up to the size of a mug! Lifeventure’s HydroFibre UltraLite Trek Towel is ultra-lightweight, compact and highly absorbent. Treated with Ax AntiBacterial formula, it dries 10 times quicker than a standard beach towel & absorbs 6 times its own weight in water. Comes in a tough ripstop roll-bag. Use a bungee cord to secure it outside your backpack for faster drying while on the move.

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Thermal Blanket

A lightweight, compact blanket which, when wrapped around the body, reflects over 80% of radiated body heat to provide personal protection in the event of an accident, trauma or unexpected exposure to extreme cold. Again, when it rains & you get soaking wet, the wind can lower your body temperature drastically. Keep this in your bag for emergency warming-up needs.

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KnotBone Bungee

With carabiner clips instead of open hooks at each end, it not only attaches to your anchor points, it locks there. Instead of elastic that loses its stretch over time, the KnotBone Bungee has a durable, high quality cord that threads through each end, adjusts from 121cm to 25cm in the #9 size and from 71cm to 15cm in the #5 size. Once you have it adjusted to the right length, secure it in place with a simple wrap-and-lock motion. The small self-clipping plastic caps to the cord ends to keep them in place once you’ve got your load secured. No more pulling, stretching, and re-hooking to get the tension you want. The KnotBone Bungee stays right where you attach it, pulls securely to the exact length you need, and locks there.

Use this to set up temporary clothes line or secure your tarp over your tent. You can also use it to hang wet attire or jacket when you secure it outside your backpack. Loads of uses. Get this.

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LifeSystem’s Camping First Aid Kit – RM134.00 only

The first aid kit should be priority in your Survivalist Sack. Injuries, even a small one, can lead to infection & if not treated, can lead to gangrene or death. Treat every wound seriously & administer first aid as soon as you can. Treating wounds is necessary in survival because the feeling or sense of well-being is achieved when the wound is dressed. If you are lost, an injury can cause a sense of defeat so treat & rest if you must.

As recommended by the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Product Team, the Lifesystem’s Camping First Aid Kit is designed for dealing with accidents that can happen whenever. The kit contains items for treating and preventing infection in burns, cuts, grazes, blisters and other minor injuries. There are 3 parts to this blogpost. In the next 2 posts, I will address where you can get additional information to prepare yourself. Very comprehensive kit with top of the line dressing that you can’t really find in local pharmacies. Even if you do, you would be spending more time locating all these in different pharmacies due to incomplete resources in each one. Eliminate your headache & just get this kit. You may get a higher specifications kit according to what you feel you want to have.

Contents of the LifeSystem’s Camping First Aid Kit:-

General tools
1 x Primary Care Leaflet
1 x Tweezers
6 x Safety Pins
1 x Scissors (5.5cm Blade)
2 Pairs Vinyl Gloves
1 x Spot Check Thermometer
Medication
16 x Paracetamol Tablets

Bandages
1 x Crepe Bandage 5cm x 4.5m
1 x Triangular Calico Bandage 90 x 127cm
1 x Open Woven Bandage 7.5cm x 5m
Preparations, Disposables & Tapes
6 x Hygienic Cleansing Wipes
1 x Zinc Oxide Tape 1.25cm x 5m
1 x Micropore Tape 1.25cm x 5m
5 x 4-Ply Gauze Swabs 5 x 5cm
3 x Burn Gel Sachets (3.5g)
1 x Strapping Tape 2.5cm x 2m
2 x Sterile Eye Wash (20ml each)

Dressings
1 x Pack of Assorted Plasters
1 x Medium Wound Dressing 12 x 12cm
2 x Low Adherent Dressings 5 x 5cm
1 x Low Adherent Dressing 10 x 10cm
1 x Small Plaster Fabric Strip 4cm x 1m
3 x Wound Closure Strips
1 x Small Eyepad Wound Dressing

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Lifeventure Waterpoof Map Aloksaks to 60 Metres x 3

This element-proof bag is perfect for keeping valuables safe and dry in extreme conditions. Ideal for cameras, mp3 players, passports, tickets, money, keys etc. Pack contains 3 sizes. Keep your map, scanned prints of your identification cards, photos of your family members for ID purposes, driver’s licence & birthcerts. These copies are to help you verify your existence/citizenship/identification if the situation is not well. These bags are certified waterproof to 60 metres constructed using medical grade film that is FDA approved. Get these.

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Travel Johnâ„¢ – pack of 3 (RM34.90)

A disposal urinal is God-sent when you are in urgent need to answer nature’s call while you are stuck in your tent & it’s raining cats & dogs outside. You might think of using an umbrella & making a dash into bushes but the stem of your brolly could well be a conductor for lightning if you are in an electrical storm! The Travel Johnâ„¢ is a convenient & discrete way of doing your business in an exclusive strong plastic that is puncture resistant and contains the revolutionary LIQSORB® polymer pouch that solidifies liquids instantly into a Leak-proof, odourless, spill-proof gel that is non-toxic and safe for disposal in any waste bin. This will be essential for a situation where you are caught with your pants down with nowhere to go…..

For navigation:-

The ideal devise is an outdoor GPS unit provided you have enough batteries to last. The compass is the only reliable navigation aid available & the best of it’s class is the Silva brand. Do not rely on others in your team to know where you are & how far you’ve gone. Always know your orientation & bearings. I’ve got one of these to hang on the zipper of my backpack. Get one & learn how to use it to find your position on the map & how to get from point A to point B.

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Silva Compass. RM24

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Lafuma’s store in Bangsar

For now, since I haven’t gotten my emergency fishing kit, I will resort to finding fruits, roots & shoots to eat if I do have to be in the wild. Sourcing for survival tools take time & I want you to know where to get them when I find them. Why do you need premium items if you can get equivalent unbranded items elsewhere at much lower prices? If you are already in a survival situation where your life depends upon the efficiency, stability & reliability of your equipment to defend you from the elements (and rogue Martians), don’t you think you would want to invest in good, tested & rated brands? If you can spend RM100,000 to buy a car, RM30,000 for a Rolex watch, RM7,000 for a Macbook Pro, RM4,000 for a Prada bag, RM1,500 for an SKII facial care set, please don’t skimp on your Survivalist Sack. This preparation is for the worse case scenario & you would still benefit if you never have to face an alien invasion. We have no one to rely on but ourselves as living is our responsibility, not the government’s. Just take your equipment out on a camp night & hone your natural skills that we have all lost in the process of modernisation or join me on a fun-filled camp night where the King Scout himself can show us the ropes while we toast marshmallows over the fire & watch each other fumble at setting up camp!

Contact Mr. Ng at Lafuma to help you get your kit ready for collection! He can be reached at +6012-4595012 or +603-22871118

This is the GPS coordinates to the shop. Use a QR Code reader on your smartphone to capture it & open the coordinates in Waze or Google Maps.

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Alternatively, use the map below to find your way there.
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Note:- Wait for Part 2 where I will address what other essentials to have for your other needs…..which would require a bigger bag!

Seashell Underwater Housing for Your iPhone & Camera

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Imagine being able to take your camera with you no matter what the weather is like. On days when you want to take snapshots of your trip to the beach or the waterfalls, you no longer need to worry about getting wet or destroying your gadget. You can even protect your camera when you go cycling, jungle trekking, kayaking or while attending wet festivals such as Songkran in Thailand and La Tomatina in Spain! Now there’s a manufacturer who has come out with a universal underwater housing for your compact camera as well as a dedicated housing for iPhone users. If you have brands of compact cameras like Nikon, Samsung, Sony, Canon, Panasonic, Olympic, Fujifilm, Leica, Casio, Sanyo, Ricoh, Pentax, Kodak, BenQ, Haier, Polaroid, Rollei, Yashica, GE then you would most definitely have your camera housed.

Configuration is quite simple but needs a little understanding of the structure of your camera & how it will fit inside your Seashell SS1 or SS2 housing. Generally, if you have a compact camera that has a protruding zoom lens, then go for the SS1. If your camera has a flat lens & a shutter closure, then get the SS2 housing. I needed a fuss-free option where I can keep a camera on me, so that I won’t have to miss any whaleshark sightings should I be conducting the Advanced Scuba Diver course or any other courses except entry level dive courses (which is prohibited in the standards to carry a camera). This housing fits snugly into my dive shorts pocket. I secure the lanyard to a carabiner which is clipped inside my pocket’s D-ring. The Pentax Optio RS1500 that I had won in the My Selangor Story 2011 blogging competition was a perfect candidate for this pretty housing. Since I have different cameras for different purposes, I use this as my back up underwater system.

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The fitting of the fishtails (silicon pads) was a bit tricky even with the supplied template that you are suppose to measure your camera against. I basically gauged which fishtail should cushion the bottom & applied some guesswork to which goes onto the side wall slots. Put them all into a ziplock bag to prevent losing them over time. They can be used again if you change cameras & need a re-fitting. After placing my camera inside, I took the sponge frame to fit over the display panel of the camera with the sticky side facing up before gently closing the door. Once it caught on, I pressed the sponge into place & voila! My casing is ready to go into the water!

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Here are some point & shoot pictures taken with it.

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During a night dive where my torch was my primary light that doubled up as my subject finder!

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A lionfish or two, lurking on the reef.


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A Chromodoris reticulata (nudibranch) at Sri Nakhoda, Tenggol.

Seashell is the world first Universal Water Proof Camera Case. Seashell can be configured to fit hundreds of different compact digital camera models. e.g. GE, Nikon, Sony, Canon, Panasonic, Olympic, Fujifilm, Leica, Casio, Sanyo, Ricoh, Pentax, Kodak, Samsung, BenQ, Haier, Polaroid, Rollei, Yashica and many more. You can now safely bring your camera to the beach, waterfalls, water themed parks & river cruise or lakes for swimming, and even to water festivals and not get it wet.
        

        Comes with the configuration kit.
        40m water-proof.
        Operate down to -10 degrees Celsius.
        1M Shock Proof.
        IP6X Dust Proof.
        Hard case design, provide better protection against shocks, dust and sand.
        Fashionable design with multiple colour options.

If you are interested to get one, please contact me via email at iam (at) pummkin (dot) net. Price for SS1 & SS2 is RM635.00 and for the SSi (iPhone4) is RM 575.00. Delivery within Klang Valley is RM10 only.

Galaxy Wonderland in Malaysia

Malaysia’s multi-cultural society bridges people with the advent of technology that magnifies the splendour of the nation. Buildings, culinary delights, cultural practices, festivals & places are re-created artistically through a wonder mine of digital partnership with Samsung & our beloved songbird/songwriter, Yuna, who’s a Galaxy Note II ambassador after the first successful Sparkle Project with its predecessor, the Galaxy Note.

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This journey aided with the Galaxy Note II will bring everything special about Malaysia to life. A traditional congkak (an elongated wooden egg tray that holds glass marbles as part of the game) is animated into a dragonboat with rowers, depicting the annual races held in the waters of Penang. The stigma of a hibiscus magically transforms into a plant growing out of the fields & a pitcher plant intertwined with KL Tower. This is Galaxy Wonderland! A celebration of Malaysia’s identity through her culture, places & art in a musical voyage brought to life on  Samsung’s latest flagship, the GALAXY Note II. Yuna will once again work with a host of creative collaborators as well as her fans to paint a Malaysian Wonderland through the eyes of her people.

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Yuna is a unique artist embodying the heart & soul of the inspirational stories that Samsung wants to showcase on GALAXY Wonderland. The experience of being able to submit unique creations online as part of the project motivates one to connect with her on an artistic level. To contribute to a beautiful collection of inspiring personal stories with other Malaysians & be considered as part of the project inspires me to continue to shoot the essence of Malaysia in my travels. I submitted a few underwater pictures of several dive sites in Malaysia and will be submitting a few illustrations of what Malaysia means to me.

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The site shows you several options that you can do. You can either select the illustrating pen & draw whatever you wish or select the picture or video upload of your work.

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You can submit your stories about your inspirations, on GALAXY Wonderland’s online portal, http://galaxywonderland.my as Yuna will use these personal accounts to find her own creative spark to write a new song! Anyone armed with the GALAXY Note II or a simple writing tablet and stylus can populate the online portal with whimsical illustrations or submit pictures showcasing what is unique about Malaysia to you. In its expanding landscape of ideas & surreal elements, GALAXY Wonderland will incorporate your submissions (upon approval) in a music video featuring her new song produced with the GALAXY Note II.

Yuna’s journey on GALAXY Wonderland will be featured in a series on Astro Ria. Catch her to see if your work is in her song!

Samsung and Yuna’s first collaboration, the Sparkle Project, saw Malaysia’s first music video created with the GALAXY Note. This musical partnership is a true showcase of creativity and a testament to what can be achieved when people, music, and technology are brought together. Recently, the Sparkle music video won the Best Music Video award on Anugerah Industri Musik (AIM), Malaysia’s premier music award-giving ceremony.

To be a part of her inspiration in her next song, journey with GALAXY Wonderland and the new Samsung GALAXY Note II & submit your artistic impressions now! On GALAXY Wonderland’s portal,  galaxywonderland.my  or visit Samsung Mobile Malaysia Facebook page at  https://www.facebook.com/samsungmobilemalaysia .

Celcom launches the iPhone 5 today!

People were queuing up at midnight to get their hands on the coveted phone while some were walking away with an entitlement to buy it at only RM5 during the launch! As we celebrate the launch of the iPhone 5 today, here’s a great reason to get it from Celcom at the best rates with huge savings utilising the widest coverage in the nation. Celcom First plans have the highest data volume of up to 6.2GB/month! I crunch up 3Gb on mine alone & am seriously considering an upgrade of plan.

Fret not if you were not in the midnight queue, there’s a better way to get it with savings of up to RM1,921 at your nearest Blue Cube outlet! From as low as RM278 on the device after savings and total monthly rebate up to RM1,210, simply choose the ideal Celcom First plan to suit your needs:

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Total Payment Upon Registration for each iPhone 5 model is:

iPhone 5 16GB: RM2,038
iPhone 5 32GB: RM2,338
iPhone 5 64GB: RM2,638

Celcom has the widest network coverage anywhere in Malaysia, be it indoors or outdoors. Offering the best network quality, voice calls, video calling, surfing, receiving email, would no longer be a challenge. Celcom gives you the richest web and video streaming experience with its stable connection enabling you to tweet or update your Facebook status on the go or live-stream an event to your friends! With iPhone’s 4” Retina display, your shots will not only be vibrant but intense coming from the 8megapixel onboard camera. Time to wow your friends & family with the results from this sleek beauty!
For more information, log on to www.celcom.com.my

Be Creative with Galaxy Note 2 Ambassadors!

Smartphones may make you look smart but winning this contest will make you the talk of the town. Thought I’d share with you what I just entered to win an entire movie hall to invite every child & teacher at StART Society (where I taught underprivileged kids swimming when the pool was functional) to be able to treat them to the upcoming Hobbit or the 3D movie of The Life of Pi just by doodling my most creative strokes on BeCreative! Samsung is running a fun contest and you can also be in the running to win it too!

I whipped out my drawing tablet and doodled away to finish my inspirator, Ernest Zacharevic’s sketch! Here’s what I illustrated……

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Screenshot of my drawing before submission….

And it’s simple as this was what I had to do. Just select any one of the four artists/artistes and finish up what they have drawn up and wait for them to pick the four winners! Apart from the chance of winning the movie hall by finishing Sharifah Amani’s drawing, you could also try your hand in the stakes to take home Ernest Zacharevic’s masterpiece, a personalised Adam Carruthers’s jersey or a dinner for two at Razif Hashim’s favourite restaurant, Prime! I will draw another sketch after this post & pray that I will win at least one of the prizes!

Visit BeCreative and follow the easy instructions on board then select any of the ambassadors where they will begin to draw a sketch for you to finish up!

Taken from the features of Samsung’s Galaxy Note II, the larger screen and enhanced S-Pen features will change the way you communicate! I love my Galaxy Note but the successor is even more awesome!

Watch what Ernest does in this video!

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The four ambassadors of Galaxy Note II.

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The sketches for you to finish!

iPhone 5 Launching in Malaysia!

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The grapevine is finally bearing fruit. i-Aficionados would be elated to know that they would be getting their hands on the much awaited iPhone 5 with just RM200 deposit to pre-order a unit & get invited to the launch to be one of the firsts in Malaysia to own it! Running on the latest iOS 6 and A6 chip, you can experience performance and graphics up to twice as fast. With improved battery life, the wide 4” Retina display is set to fix your gaze on colours you never knew existed and with an 8MP camera in your pocket/handbag/man-bag/fuzzy-cosy, you will never miss any action in any situation again! Your own personal mobile assistant, SIRI would probably tell you to interact as much as you can with the 16GB, 32GB or 64GB of storage space for your content, so you can leave the good trusty laptop at home.

Only with Celcom, the largest mobile network coverage in Malaysia, would you get an enhanced full experience of the coveted iPhone 5. Time is of essence so head on over to BlueCube to secure yourself a unit now!

Istanbul Aku Datang!

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Attending the gala premiere of the movie Istanbul Aku Datang on the night of the 24 October under the invitation of Tourism Turkey, I truly enjoyed the performance of our homegrown actors, Harris (Beto Kusyairy), Dian (Lisa Surihani) & Azad (Tomok). The entire movie was shot in Istanbul, Turkey, a place that I will be visiting next year. The stars were mingling about while I said my hellos to my host, Ali Gulen & the people from the embassy. What thrilled me in the movie was how this idealistic blogger, Dian, who makes her journey to Istanbul a trigger to all her emotions, in a plan to get her boyfriend to propose marriage. She was confronted with the harsh realities of travel (and life) when she had to struggle with her many bags, (something that I too, have to manage), her hope for her love, her fear of cats and the unexpected circumstances that came her way. Thinking she had it all planned, she enrolled in a language course to stick around for 3 months, a period that was to encompass the fairy tale proposal.

On her second day, she was reminded to get a place of her own as her boyfriend, Azad, didn’t want her to be seen living with 3 blokes. Each night, she would blog & plot her moves with her readers giving her sound advice as she signs off with XOXO, D & publishes the blog. Her house-hunting became another nightmare. She ended up in an apartment without knowing it was already tenanted. The conflict starts when the rightful tenant, Harris, whom she antagonistically calls Awak (You) & her intrude into one another’s private space, especially while in the bathroom. Director Bernard Chauly, cleverly depicted the surprise reaction, when Harris stood in front of the water closet, he jumped & ‘misfired’ the entire bathroom. There were other hilarious moments that had me in a fit. I was glad to note that I wasn’t the only one laughing so hard. There was a ‘Maggi moment,’ which I could identify with, causing a stir to know how close to home we are when we have such familiarities. Harris starts out as an unrelenting, rightfully assertive, gay housemate…..until he received his Maggi Assam Laksa replacement in a box with an apology. His role as Harris is the man any woman would want while Azad’s act showed the unpleasantness of a man-in-want. Dian’s portrayal will ring true for any girl who has gone to the other side of the world to look for love. I will not give the plot away because watching this movie will stir you into a fury of emotions as their characters unfold. I can’t wait to get my DVD copy to get stirred up again. The movie has English sub-titles & when they converse in English, sub-titles would be in Malay.

        
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Tomok when singing on stage at the launch.

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Beto being interviewed.

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The actors & the host in a lighthearted moment before the movie which will debut on 8 November 2012 in local cinemas.

Set in Istanbul, you should plan your holidays to Turkey after watching this movie because if the romanticism doesn’t make you want to go, the beautiful architecture would.

Floating On My LilyPad HD!

LilyPad HD has redefined the experience of chatting on a tablet by keeping chats ‘afloat’ on a layer above whatever you are doing, be it writing or reading, watching parodies of Oppa Gangnam Style, staying in touch has never been easier. LilyPad HD eliminates the need of switching between tasks or apps to return to your conversation in Google Talk, Facebook or MSN with Romeo/Juliet just by touching the app on the screen. As the name implies, it functions as a layer on top of your working apps just like the leaves of Water Lillies in the pond! LilyPad HD works great on my Asus Transformer TF101G with keyboard dock, rendering the list of ‘buddies’ on a scrollable column. This column can be repositioned anywhere on the screen, adjustable, minimised or closed, like the chat windows that appear separately in tabbed format. For instance, you can have a conversation with 5 others in tabs but only they nestle in only one window.
Clever use of space here instead of having a messenger app that uses the entire screen!

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Along with GTalk, Google’s chat platform, LilyPad HD can login to Facebook to connect you with your friends effectively. It replaces the need to have FB Messenger and chatting in the browser which is slow & laggy. When you need to get a simple message across, getting your characters garbled in lag is not what you want. Apart from getting notifications for GTalk  & Facebook, there’s also an MSN/Live Messenger option to connect with your diehard-would-not-use-Gmail-type of friends. Since Hotmail deleted all my email & contacts after I left it inactive for 3 months, I switched to Gmail permanently. If having an account with them would subject me to lose conversations & correspondence again, I will just let it sit on a LilyPad!

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Staying in touch should be a cinch, not a chore when you need not switch task and not risk losing your work because you pressed Home button or exited before saving. A tablet app that is made to simulate a computer experience is all I need to function when on-the-go. LilyPad HD is my connectivity tool for an easy access to friends that I can see on a screen 100% of the time until I minimise or close it. It is free to try & only cost a few dollars to buy this convenience for your Android tablet.