It’s been 3 years since I last visited Penang.
I had been invited to speak at the Global Internet Summit and this was going to be the first time GIS is presented in Penang. I had prepared my presentation a few days before the big day and I would be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous at all; this was also going to be my first speaking engagement as a main speaker.
And to top that, I was also going to be the first speaker to climb the stage to kick start the event!
One day before the big day, I caught a flight to Penang and checked into the Evergreen Laurel Hotel at Persiaran Gurney. While I was looking forward to having more fun and going around Penang, the presentation occupied my mind most of the time. Couldn’t wait for it to end.
Thankfully, the Success Resources team had arrived earlier and since I was going to be the first main speaker to start the event – I wouldn’t have the luxury of observing and learning from other speakers before my turn – I rehearsed my presentation in the empty room. I rarely spoke in front of large crowds and I had to learn almost everything I could from “Great Public Speaking in 10 Days”… in 2 days.
My biggest worry was whether I would exceed my allotted time of 1.5 hours. So I spent whatever available time I can rehearsing my presentation (though I paid little attention to the details in the final 15 minutes i.e. selling).
Other speakers arrived shortly and I met up with them for dinner to get acquainted, especially Benjamin Teo and Andy Hun since I’ve not met them before.
We ate at Gurney Drive and yep, Penang is well known for its food! Here’s Andy Hun (right) and Feebie, Benjamin Teo’s girlfriend. Andy’s from Johor Bahru, to my surprise
(just when I thought I’m the Sultan of Johor).
I don’t have a profiled picture of Feebie but she looks really, really familiar. I was certain I saw someone who looked like her back in Sydney (and maybe true since she and Ben Teo came from Sydney!)… and she looked like an ex-classmate of mine.
“Common face,” said Ben.
Oh yeah, here’s Alvin Phang too. His first time in Penang. Since I won 2nd place in his Atoming Blogging 3.0 contest, should’ve asked him to hand me my prizes while in person. 😛
Of course, Benjamin Teo himself. He may speak in a monotone voice but hey, he’s THE social media expert. He was from Malaysia (surprise, surprise) and then moved to Australia at an early age. He’s got like… what? 36,000 followers on Twitter? Follow him on Twitter: @upicks
And of course, here’s the star and the hero himself. What’s this blog without THE MAN? 😉
Global Internet Summit
The long awaited 1.5 hours of presentation finally came… and go! 🙂
I think I did pretty well for a first timer, considering many of the audience didn’t quite believe this was my first time speaking on stage, my fear of exceeding the 1.5 hours of given time was un-found (I finished on time), and I sold some of my back-end programs too at an acceptable ratio for a crowd that I heard was hard to please.
To add to that, my hairstyle was at its best. 😛 I can’t think of anything I’ve goofed up badly and I must say I did well. 🙂
I haven’t got the photos of me speaking on stage so when I get them I’ll post them here. But I want to show you the photos of some of the people I’ve met at the GIS.
UPDATED 16th April
Thanks to Jaz Lai and Edmund Toh for the pics! Here they are…
Okay now that the business trip is covered, let’s talk about leisure for the rest of the blog post!
Red Box Karaoke
In no sequence, let me show what we’ve been doing when we’re not speaking for the GIS. 🙂 Hope this convinces some people that we’re totally nerds behind the comps – or that we spend the rest of our free time at the cyber cafe. lol
This is the third time I’ve gone to a karaoke session and though I’m not good at singing (actually, the extreme opposite) I can’t believe I’m going to say this but I’m beginning to like it too. 🙂 Look forward to go to more of these Red Box outings next time when I’m in KL. Khai Siung is a MUST in the group, really.
I didn’t know Jaz Lai could sing, though.
And even Edmund Toh. I suspect we came from the same factory that produced us.
And hey, it’s our guest and friend from India, Alok Jain!
Finally… me. 🙂
Kenko Fish Spa
It’s been everyday that I go to Gurney Plaza while I was in Penang but I’m most fond of the Kenko Fish Spa while I’m there.
I’ve seen people blog about their experience at the fish spa and I think it would be sad if I didn’t try it out at least once in my lifetime. Now I’m certain I would do it once in a while. 🙂
Trying to maximize my value for money by dipping both my hands into the pool and still get away with paying for only foot massage fees.
Here’s York Min whom we’ve briefly got acquainted with. I’ve also tried out the full body massage at Kenko’s the next day since the massage service at the hotel left a lot to be desired.
Dinner and Food!
What’s Penang without all the amazing food and friends right? 🙂
We also had Speaker’s Dinner on the last evening of the GIS. Here’s me and Vince Tan – damn he sold many seats too many for his back-end program, well done!
L-R: Vince, me, Alok, Andy
Thanks to Success Resources for helping me out with my first speaking engagement!
Special credits to: Jessie, Yan Ang, Henry Chee, Henry Wong, Purple Chin (and of course, the rest of the SR team!)
Last Day – Going Around Penang
I was the last speaker to leave the island (Patric Chan doesn’t count since he’s a native here!) so I checked out Bukit Bendera and the Kek Lok Si temple.
Also caught a movie at Gurney Plaza’s GSC – Shinjuku Incident starring Jackie Chan. Even though it’s like what Jackie himself said in an interview, “1% action 99% drama” I think this is one of Jackie Chan’s best films. The premise of the show is that in the early 1990’s – based on a true incident that really happened – Jackie plays the character “Steel Head” and was one of the many of the illegal immigrants from China who settled in Shinjuku, Japan… illegally, of course.
Steel Head would go on to find that his former lover is now married with a kid to a Yakuza leader called Eguchi. From here on, Jackie went from doing odd jobs to starting multiple illegal businesses like selling fake phone cards and tampering with the jackpot machines until he seizes substantial power within the ranks of the Yakuza semi-legitimate organization and controls a pure Chinese territory for his Chinese ‘brothers’. There are a lot of heart wrenching moments when you can see how good people turn bad, and yet how some things don’t really change – and the racial issues between the Japanese and the Chinese.
I can see why this show is banned in China because of how it portrays the Chinese people. Nonetheless, I’d say put it in your “must watch” list.
Okay, this is it. I’m sorry if I didn’t mention some of you in my blog post and I’m still waiting for new photos to add here. Hope you’ve enjoyed reading and it’s been a pleasure to meet new people while I was in Penang! Talk soon and until the next time!