Off to Bali For a Holiday!

I’ll be going to Bali in the morning and will be there until 9th June. I will then spend the next three days in Jakarta, Indonesia before I return to Malaysia. I understand there is WIFI access in the hotel lobby but expect limited connectivity, and thus no updates to this blog until I return on the 12th June.

Customer/Member Support: please contact my helpdesk and I will give priority to answering your queries.

Thanks and I’ll be back!

Gelang Patah: Revisited

Did you know that I used to stay in an obscure, blind spot of Malaysia at one point in time? The place is called Gelang Patah. My mother, sister and I used to joke about Gelang Patah being ‘Nowhere Land‘, just like the one in the cartoon show “Courage the Cowardly Dog”.

Today, Gelang Patah is rapidly growing in development and a lot of people – Malaysians and Singaporeans alike – can be seen using this small town as a means of transiting via the Second (Tuas) Causeway Link.

Road to Gelang Patah

I haven’t been here for more than a year, almost two in fact. The roads to Gelang Patah are long and winding, with nothing but forest on the left and right. It’s like one of those interstate rides on the North-South Express Highway.

Nowhere Land

Two reasons brought me back to Gelang Patah this time. To settle my car loan in full… and to get a haircut. πŸ™‚

I first arrived at this little, obscure town in the last quarter of Year 2003. My family moved out of Petaling Jaya earlier, and after a lot had happened, I continued my last days of high school in SMK Gelang Patah as a substitute student. When I came back here this time, there was more traffic than usual. And I suspect it will be a big town in years to come, possibly sooner than I think.

My mom stayed here for most of the time until we all moved out to town area in early 2006, whereas both my sister and I were here on and off. I got my first and last full time job in PJ in 2004 and then started my Internet Business from here in 2005. When we moved out of this place eventually, the small, little town was going through signs of development since Gelang Patah is strategically near Tuas, the second Causeway Link to Singapore.

Peaceful Residence

Even though I didn’t grow up here, nor did I spend years growing up in Gelang Patah, it sure is a ride down Memory Lane. I was greeted by development and bittersweet memories when I came back here. A lot of things have changed since.

The Globe

When I was here, Internet connection was dreadful. The one and only Cyber Cafe I knew was 10 minutes walk from home and it was old, drabby and mouldy… and so 56k. That time, the entire Nusa Perintis is fully monopolized by TIME NET, and you know what that means? Yep… Dial-up Internet connection!

Yet that was how I did my business online back in the early days. Looking back, wow… I actually paid RM700 – 900 a month for snail paced Internet access!

Today, they have this uber awesome Cyber Cafe right here in this small town.

Hi-Tech Cyber Cafe

When I entered the cafe, a lot of people were playing DoTA and a host of ‘dance dance’ games like crazy. And there’s even my favorite Company of Heroes too! I’m never a fan of DoTA but damn… I came and go two years too early. πŸ˜‰ I also reckon that Broadband connection may have reached this town already.

Right outside the Cyber Cafe, I saw this.

Ferris Wheel

Now they’re planning to build a mini amusement park here too? Amazing! I must be missing a lot. I sure am getting envious! πŸ˜‰

New Building - Pusat Pemulihan dalam Komuniti

They’ve built this new Community Center right in front of the football field too. Notice that there are no skyscrappers around? Yet some things still remain the same.

The Shops

The Residential Area

This was the backalley ‘short cut’ we always used to get to the Grocery Store to buy our goods and return home. Again, notice that there are no skyscrappers around? πŸ™‚ This is still a relatively peaceful place to be in.

The Backalley

Oh, and we used to stay in that house too. πŸ™‚ Can you imagine? Rent was only RM480 a month! Great deal for a small double storey house. Even so, money was tight back then and paying up for rent in time was a trouble too.

The Old House

Even though the house was small in size, Mom and I kept good care of the house and we cleaned it very often to maintain a homely environment. It’s amazing in many ways though: this house has seen the best in me when I studied hard for my exams like never before (in spite of the 3-month abscence handicap)… and this is also where I made my first dollar online. πŸ™‚

SMK Gelang Patah

I would have finished my schooling in SMK Damansara Jaya if not for my parent’s divorce that took effect the same year, which most people would refer to as ‘the best year of your high school’.

Instead, I finished school in this alien environment where no one speaks a word of English. I’m a banana so you can imagine how I had to face going to school every day with 1,200 pair of eyeballs always staring in my direction during assembly, recess and leaving school. I kept mostly to myself but I guess many people were just waiting to know me. Only if language wasn’t a barrier.

This may be a government school on the outside but, it’s ruled heavily by religion. Going to this school for just three months was hell too. Gang fights are a norm every day at this school, and they predictably break out every last bell. Racism was the order of the day too. I must have created a default fourth faction of my own when I entered this school: The Banana.

There was a great silver lining behind all the dark clouds though, however, and I have had learned a handful of priceless lessons ever since. The teachers at this school were great and showed no boundaries in their dedication. They were not motivated by money at all when they helped tutor me for free after school hours, what I needed most when I was also at my most broke too.

I must say that their sheer value and dedication had shamed many of the teachers from my former school. Seriously. I still remember their lessons by example very well, and I continue to practive them with spirit in my business everyday.

After settling my car loan in full, cruising around the town and reminiscing memories, I wrapped up the mini trip with a haircut.

BEFORE…

Me - Before

AFTER…

Me - After!

When time permits, I’ll put up some photos from my earlier school days back in SMK Damansara Jaya. I won’t be updating this blog for a while though, as I will be going overseas from April 12th through 19th.

Until then! πŸ™‚

Back from Two Week’s Absence

Edmund’s Notes: I posted this post on 30th March 2008 and updated the previous post on 2nd April. I got back on today to find out that… it seemed my blog went back in time? Not only did I find this post in the drafts, the updates and comments seem to have been reversed back to some time ago. (???)

Hmmm… I don’t know what just happened but looks like I have to re-post this again and it’s sad that all the recent comments were gone too, including the photos taken in Singapore. Grrr! πŸ™ Oh well…

Even in my busiest moments, I still make it a habit to blog at least once a week. Doing business can quickly turn into a chore sometimes, no matter how passionate I am about Internet Entrepreneurship. And my Personal Blog provides a good escapade as well as a good balance between work and enjoying life. πŸ™‚

After checking out my last post to this blog (14th March)… wow, it’s been more than two weeks that I’ve been neglecting my poor Personal Blog! Yes I had been busy – I’ve been working on a couple of secret, ‘covert operations’ which at this stage it’s too early to reveal any information to the public. Yet.

Also, there hasn’t been anything else worthwhile to post about until only lately. If you’ve been dropping by almost every day expecting some update, this should make your visit worthwhile again. πŸ™‚

NOTE: Even when I am not posting to this Blog, I make it a habit to keep my FaceBook status up to date, and as real-time as possible. I spend more time in Johor Bahru and Singapore this time around compared to Petaling Jaya/Kuala Lumpur. So to keep tabs on my current location, check out my FaceBook status on the left hand of this Blog ya? πŸ˜‰

The Johor Bahru Retreat

As you probably notice by now, I seem to be spending more time in JB/Singapore than in PJ/KL. I find working from home the best for me compared to my temporary room in PJ, and for many reasons.

My mom cooks my meals here. In PJ, going out to eat every meal time is not only costly (though I don’t mind forking out a bit) but it’s a real time-killer. I clean my room very often – in fact, more often than when I’m in JB – but it gets dirty really, really quick too. Perhaps the house is old. The room isn’t a feasible place to produce inspiring ideas and my ability to work and be productive in that room rarely reaches optimum level. Sucks, right?

Last but not least, there’s something *creepy* about that room. A case of bad Feng Shui? Who knows. I’m giving it up real soon anyways.

Moving most of my things back to JB was one of the wiser decisions I’ve made this year, and it was a good start for business to roll into momentum and every other area in life starts to improve and get better. πŸ™‚ Besides, I won’t make myself too easily available to ‘time vampires’ from now on.

Edmund Loh

Oh and did I also mention that the weather is more cooling in JB as well? Although the weather is getting warmer again, there are some really cold, rainy nights that I had to wear a jacket. πŸ˜‰

One-Day Trip in Kuala Lumpur

Just two days ago, I had to make a quick trip back to Kuala Lumpur to retrieve my flight ticket – I’ll be going overseas in mid April to experience a different culture. And yes, go for a short holiday. πŸ™‚

And since I was in KL, I might as well drop by and have my hair treated as well.

Eve Soh & Edmund Loh

That’s Eve Soh with me. πŸ™‚ Be gentle with the head… it produces million dollar ideas!

Panny

Panny. My favorite chat buddy. πŸ™‚

Single & AvailableÒ€¦ Want my Phone Number? ;-)

Single, attractive and available. Any guy interested in her? πŸ˜‰

Kura, Kura & Kura

Walked by the pond at Central Park, in front of 1Utama. My favorite tortoises a.k.a. stray kuras. πŸ™‚

Kura, Kura & Kura

Singapore Internet Marketing Commandos – Orchard

Next day: back in JB and then a hustle trip to meet the Singaporean Internet Marketing Commandos at Wheelock’s Place, Orchard. Met Jaz Lai and Dylan Loh.

This was also my first time meeting Shree ‘The Dating Coach’ in person. I did see his photo somewhere on FaceBook before this. You have to hand it that Social Networking sites and other web 2.0 applications are responsible for making the world flat and smaller every day. πŸ™‚

Initially, looking for the trio was difficult. Dylan instructed me to go to Wheelock’s Place at Orchard. Not that I had been there before. Going to Orchard and looking for Wheelock’s was easy but because my handphone was practically useless in Singapore (read: no International roaming) and realizing I couldn’t receive incoming calls, Dylan couldn’t call me either.

Forget the phone booths, they’re not user friendly either as they assume the entire nation in Singapore uses the phone card. So, I took a blind guess looking for the Singaporean Internet Marketers at both Coffee Bean and Starbucks. And what do you know? They were camping at the corner of the Starbucks cafe! πŸ™‚

EDIT: As said earlier at the beginning of this post, when I got back to my Personal Homepage I found out that not only this post was in draft mode, the updates to the previous post were gone too and so were the comments made in the past few days.

I’ll have to restore this post and the updates to the previous post on the Bali Event. The comments are gone and it’s a bummer I didn’t save the photos on my Singapore trip in my hard drive. What a way to start the morning but hope this doesn’t happen again next time!

The Great Singapore Adventure!

Yes, it really was a great re-visit to Singapore and Expo Hall although it was quite impromptu for me. πŸ™‚

I was to originally meet a small group of Singaporean Internet Marketers such as Dylan Loh, Stuart Tan, Kelvin Yeo, and iKontent (haha), and Siah (though he’s from Sabah; he’s just studying here) across the causeway.

But what did you know? In spite of initially planning that Khai, Dennis Sim and Vince Tan just following me from Johor Bahru and making their own way towards the Expo Hall on the extreme East of Singapore while I hang out at Woodlands with the Singaporean gang, I ended up staying in Singapore overnight and attended the Internet Millionaire Incubator seminar too!

And I’m so glad I came over. πŸ™‚

Woodlands Siege and Burger King Meet Up

The 3 Stooges

At the Kranji MRT station (L-R): Khai, Me, Vince.

Siah and Kelvin Yeo

The Burger King meet up. Siah and Kelvin Yeo.

Discuss IM!

Dylan Loh with Khai and Dennis Sim. As usual, they’re always up to no good. πŸ˜›

Vince, Khai and Dennis made an early move to the Mercure Roxy Hotel whereas I stayed behind with the group at Woodlands to carry on a pure Internet Marketing discussion. Learned a decent deal on SEO and looks like Dylan (my other half) and I will probably be working on a Product Launch real soon, probably during the Christmas season! πŸ™‚

Siah followed me, like, 75% of the MRT journey as soon as the Woodlands meeting ended as he had flyers to distribute at Bugis. I was well on way to the Expo Hall as the three stooges were expecting me then.

Haunting the Expo Hall Again

Met quite a number of interesting people here at the Internet Millionaire Incubator seminar in Expo Hall, Singapore.

Stuart Tan and Friends

This is Stuart Tan here. Since I didn’t see him in Woodlands, it didn’t take any further educated guess to know he would be at the Expo Hall! So hah, I nailed him right there.

L-R: Vince, Me, Stuart, Dennis, Khai.

Jo Han Mok & Matt Bacak

Aaaa-hah! That’s me with Jo Han Mok and Matt Bacak! Truth be told, this is my second time seeing Jo Han in person, the first time being in March just last year. I think he put on weight… like 10kg or so – really good life, some people.

What amazes me to this day, really, is how some of the most successful people can still remain humble and modest. And these two guys here are the prime examples. Edmund, you have sooooo much more to learn from them!

Hmm… seen Patric Chan there as well. He probably was wondering what I was doing in Singapore when just two weeks back he saw me in KL briefly. Haha…

I’ve met another familiar person, Lesley Chew, at the seminar. She must be a real seminar junkie because not only have I seen her in almost every one of them in the past, I can almost half-expect her to turn up for the next one! πŸ™‚ Haha – what a totally positive attitude towards learning. That’s another one I must discipline myself to pick up.

And to wrap up the Day 1 of “impromptu” trip to Singapore Expo Hall…

Orgasm

Uhh… what’s this dude trying to do?

Freeloading at Mercure Roxy and Time Zone…

Since I made a last minute decision to stay in Singapore for the night, I followed the three stooges to the 4-star Mercure Roxy Hotel – at the expense of sleeping on the floor (then, it really was good thing… only if you knew why πŸ™‚ ).

Fortunately, the hotel provided the basic hygiene stuffs like tooth brush, tooth paste, shampoo, soap, and towel (duuuh). That pretty much took care of things – only I had to becareful about my clothes since I only had the one I was wearing on.

Before the night ended, we all decided to re-live our childhood at the Time Zone!

Khai Stalker!

I know that Khai enjoys the Dance Dance Revolution machine, but why did I have a feeling it has got nothing to do with it now? My wild imagination maybe. I don’t know.

I had a deck of fun playing numerous games at the arcade – such as Time Crisis 3 (non-stop shooting action!), throwing hoops (though two of four basketballs ended up “somewhere else”), sampled out the dance machine (beginner’s level, of course), ice hockey table, and what say more… πŸ™‚

But Vince just had to try to spoil my fun by challenging me to a Hunter’s game, which was really foolish of him in my opinion because it just so happens that I was pretty good with guns.

Vince & Edmund

Yes that’s him posing the toy shotgun with me. He was about to challenge me to a hunter’s match in seeing who hunts down the most wild animals in numerous spot scenarios.

Several spots and two bonus stages later, it became quite *crystal* clear that my display of raw skills and marksmanship owns Vince anytime.

Don’t believe me? Check this out:

The Score

Told you.

!@#$%^&*()

Whoa chill man – it’s just a game! At least you’ve creamed me at throwing hoops (though I was handicapped; I already threw two of four basketballs behind the machine). Sooo… does this mean our JV partnership is still on? I hope so!

Ice Hockey

One final duel with Khai… and what do you know? I still had plenty of credits (like SGD20+!) in my Time Zone card! Better remind myself to use them again if and when I happen to drop by any Time Zone arcade in Singapore the next time I come and visit.

Thus the day ended…

Day Two – Return to Expo Hall and Then Back To JB!

I thought of returning home early morning but since Vince was going to be speaking on stage in the afternoon, it didn’t hurt to stay a while more to support him. πŸ™‚

I met more chaps this day – CW, William Quek, Samuel, and Jaz Lai (nice funky hair, btw πŸ™‚ ).

Admittedly though, I was low on battery – hand phone, MP3 player, and physically. Ack.

However in my opinion, the most interesting and moving highlight of the day was one delivered by Mel Gill – not only did his speech answered a lot of my previous questions and concerns (albeit not totally related to Internet Marketing but more towards life and relationship), I really like the way he presented himself and his humor was tops! Too bad the Singaporean crowd was slow in catching them. I want to be like him when I grow up – haha! πŸ˜›

As soon as Vince’s presentation was over (mind you, it was his first one ever), I was all ready to head home in JB. All in all, it was a really great Singapore re-visit! πŸ™‚

Scenes in Singapore and Causeway Shore

Singapore…

Singapore

Tebrau Shore…

Tebrau Shore

Until then, everyone! πŸ™‚