Sunday, February 21, 2010

This time next week....

...I will be into the first day of a full day's diving in Lembeh....

It's always the last few days before you fly home that's the worst. The build up can sometimes be too much to bear. I guess on the plus side, I believe I will be relatively busy the next 3 days to sufficiently help the days go fast.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

This time next week....

I think I would be done for the day with most of my shopping for my Lembeh trip.. and will be sitting somewhere for dinner and drinks with someone or other..

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

This time next week...

...I will be stepping off the airplane at Changi... :)

Monday, February 15, 2010


I know I told myself that I'd steer clear away from any negative postings but I cannot help it anymore and just need to get it off me chest.

I hate this place and I am just counting down the time until I can get out of here next week, even if it's just for a month. And this statement is as polite as I can get.

I wanna go home I wanna go home I wanna go home.

Having said that, I know there will come a time in April when I will be back here, behind this desk, wondering where hell the last 6 weeks went and wondering what else is there to look forward to in Dubai.


Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Paradise City

This time in 2 weeks, I would have just landed at Singapore Changi International airport. I've travelled a fair bit over the last 10 years for work and especially when I was a seaman and the Guns & Roses song "Paradise City" always plays in my mind whenever we land in Singapore..

"Take me down to the Paradise City...
Where the grass is green and the girls are pretty..."
This pretty much sums up what Singapore means to me.. nevertheless early Guns & Roses remains one of my all time favourite 80's band...
Blogger really sucks man...sometimes it doesn't do what you want it to... like leave a freakin space between selected sentences.....sheesh I really need to find a new platform...

"The Underwater Photographer - 4th Edition"

I had the most pleasantest surprise this morning when I checked my e-mail and see a message from Amazon that my order for this book has been shipped. I made the pre order back in November 2009. The book not released then was slated for release sometime early 2010 and it was my hope that I could get my hands on it before returning home for Lembeh. However it's release kept being delayed and the latest word was that it was due for release in March 2010, which would mean that I would already be in Lembeh then. But this morning's message informs me that this has been shipped and I can expect delivery of it on the 12th February. I paid priority international courier for it because I really wanted my hands on it before the trip home. It's that good. Now I will be trying to minimise whatever I bring back home from Dubai due to airline weight issues but if it's any book that I am bringing will be this one.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Planned 2nd Outing to Lembeh

There...I've gone ahead and done it. I've booked a second flight to Manado for the 17th March with a return on the 20th. Hopefully I will be able to secure a nice discount with the resort seeing how I'll be staying there for a week beginning of the month. If I'm really lucky I can even leave my dive gear behind. Hopefully this time around I will be the only diver around so we will be a bit more liberal at where we can go.

Some of the critters I hope to capture photographically are

1. Yawning Rhinopias
2. Striated Frogfishes
3. Feeding Lizardfishes
4. Feeding Cephalopods
5. Snake Eels
6. Nudibranches and shrimp.

And of course how can anyone go all the way to Lembeh and not take a shot of a Pygmy Seahorse?

17 Days more....

By Golly I have got to stop doing this... I have got to try to start thinking of something else! I started packing up my dive gear over the weekend and it weighed to about 15kg. I think I can pack in another 10kg of clothes and I will carry everything else, my underwater photography kit, cameras and lenses as carry on luggage. My clothes will be the bare minimum I need. Why carry back what I can easily buy back home? I always bring back more that I ever use anyway. First priority would be everything I need for Lembeh and Siem Reap.
Despite all this eager anticipation at going home and to Lembeh and Siem Reap, there lies in the back of my mind the thought that one day in April, we will be getting onto that return flight back to Dubai and this return trip will be the hardest one I would have ever made because Heisham (and Beaver) will not be there.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Quick Photography outing to Global Village

It has been ages since I shot on film. So I decided to have a quick fling with the one lens I feel has been the most under utilized, my Canon 50mm f1.2. With a roll of Ilford Delta 3200 we were off to Global Village for the evening yesterday.

The Canon 50mm, f1.2 on Leica M6. The following are just some of the results.

This woman was in a group and appeared to be making some "roti prata"ish dish. I've always wondered on the purpose of the brass face mask they wear. It makes them look fierce and if I dare say "hideous". Perhaps this is to deflect any unwanted male attention but this practice seem to be common among the older generation.

The Global Village is really a treasure trove of photographic opportunies.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

An Epiphany!

I've just had an epiphany. Seeing how I will have the whole of the 3rd week of March free, I could perhaps return to Lembeh again. After all my stay back home will now be extended to the 7th April and I will have all this time until the 7th April free albeit the last two weeks will see me fulfilling the function of stay in maid. No doubt I predict I will get bored pretty fast.
Furthermore this is the only time I can really put in time for some quality diving with great underwater photo opportunities. I could always return to the Kasawari Lembeh resort for a few days. After all I will be a part of a major event 1st week of March and I could always arrange my accomodation there and then for the 3rd week. The other alternative would be to go to Pulau Aur and there is no way I'd want to lug all my gear there just for a weekend, packed full of other divers and for mediocre photographic ops.

If I pull this off I think i would have settled my Scuba Diving and U/W photography fix for the next 6 months. I would have no need to contend myself with the UAE east coast!

Of course if I wanted to I could just arrange for another photography trip to Siem Reap but since I will have my entire set of scuba gear and U/W photography kit with me, I might as well utilise them to the fullest.

Monday, February 1, 2010

It's February...continued..

Man it's been really really quiet of late... just like it was in December last year. No phone e-mails... I almost feel guilty being in the office! And to make it worse my boss sits directly behind me but I can tell that he too is finding it quiet these days. But he sitting behind me makes it difficult to whip out a book or do anything else besides pretend to be doing something work related. As such I find myself planning for my various trips back home. Like making out shopping lists and arranging for flights and hotel bookings... making notes... planning my shopping schedule for those few days before I set off to Lembeh... all these actions if done correctly can look as if it's work related... (gosh I hope no one from work reads this!)

Over the weekend I finally found what I was looking for. A traditional wooden arabic door. I believe this door if need be can be used as an actual door but I think it will make a cool decorative piece for an apartment. It will be cool to one day bring this back to S'pore to place in our very own apartment. It will be a rarity.

It's February!!!!

23 days left to go! Vacations like these are what dreams are made of...week long dive trip, siem reap photography trip... road trip to Kukup with great pals and a possibility of even a short dive trip to Pulau Aur! A full month at home...who can ask for more!