Work and Play in Penang

If you had been wondering where I have been missing to last week, the answer will be Penang. Last week I had a call of duty to serve in the annual health exhibition in conjunction of the Convocation Expo (CONVEX) this year. Not surprising enough I was working for the dietetics booth for the CONVEX, so I was there on official business. If you work hard, you play hard. We left the Kelantan campus about 10.30 p.m. and arrived in Penang early morning, probably about 6 a.m. What a disappointing start, I tell myself. The bus took us to Gelugor for some lousy breakfast and the driver refused to take us to the main campus, claiming that the gate is still closed. Leaving us with no option, we took breakfast there. Once reaching campus, we received yet another surprise. We were given only one room. Imagine all 40-50 male students fit into just 2 rooms. Even the sardines inside those canned food have some extra room. Obviously I won’t be staying there. Thankfully my friend had arranged me a place to stay inside the same campus in another room. Goodbye claustrophobia.

Penang CONVEX TripPatiently Waiting Cafe isn’t exactly convincing to name a cafe.

Penang CONVEX TripArrived at our destination – Desasiswa Restu

Penang CONVEX TripThe convoy of buses from Kelantan.

Penang CONVEX TripThe reason why I did not want to sleep here.Now the work begins. We set up the booth for quite some time, stretching it all the way to the late afternoon. But finally it’s a job well done. Night falls then it’s time to go out to the big city. We decided to follow the transport provided by the CONVEX committee and trust their route. The hearsay was Gurney Drive (the hippest place in Penang) but we ended up going to the place better known as Seagate. I have no idea where it was but once reaching there, all questions were answered. It was Seagate alright. The majority would know Seagate better as one of the main manufacturer of hard disks and the place mentioned is located nearby that factory. Could someone please tell me that it is a joke?! So that was for our lousy start on the first day. A new day comes and it was time to shine. The first day of CONVEX was rather awkward as most of the people involved were handling exhibition booths for the first time – this includes myself. What’s more is our campus dean and his second man are expected to come for a visit later in the afternoon. As you all should figure, I was managing the dietetics booth on behalf of the dietetics programme of our health school. The whole work during the exhibition was smooth sailing. Even when the dean came, it was a piece of cake (seriously) though it was nerve-wrecking before he came over our booth. Then for the rest of the week, it was a repetitive process all over again. It tends to get boring especially at the end of our session.

Penang CONVEX TripWelcome to CONVEX 2007.

Penang CONVEX TripOur exhibition booth – the Dietetics station.

Penang CONVEX TripHey, I’m briefing a VIP.

Penang CONVEX TripLet the show begins.During break, I’ve managed to find time to explore around the CONVEX compound. My first impression was the size of the whole event is rather huge. No surprise; considering that USM is one of the biggest and famous universities in Malaysia. I don’t mean to brag but it’s just facts. As walked around the exhibition site, the crowd was especially crowded at the food area. This is just so typical being Malaysian – the food heaven (and temptation). The choices of food during CONVEX were quite many yet I noticed most of the stalls tend to sell the same thing like others. In the end, I felt that I was in dilemma choosing which food to eat, not because of the variants but because of the lack of options. However I am impressed by the visitor turnout, which was huge although majority of them are families of those who were graduating. Whenever I look at those graduates suited in their purple sash and square head, I simply cannot imagine myself in such an outfit. But mark my words – I can’t wait for graduation day. I’m not sure if I am ready for adulthood but I am thrilled to set foot into the world of responsibilities and commitments.

Penang CONVEX TripA scene from CONVEX site. Each night, we would hang out around the city. To be precise, we only went to Queensbay Mall and Gurney Plaza. Honestly my main purpose of going to the CONVEX is for shopping in Penang; nothing more, nothing less. To the least, I did not escape my obligations (but I did made some exemption due to some inaccurate notices). Forget the first night, that was done for. The second night, we spent time in Queensbay Mall where my roommate and I had dinner in Fridays. Now people, this is actually my first time going to TGI Fridays since TGI Fridays only available in two locations in Malaysia – Queensbay Mall Penang and One Utama Petaling Jaya. The food was expectedly good, not so delicious to my palate. However I did enjoy their charm and their friendly service. The mood there was very fun and enjoyable. The next night, it was Gurney Plaza. Dinner this time was at the infamous Gurney Drive open-air food court nearby the mall. All the Chinese street delicacies are up for grabs there. If you want something uniquely Penang, it is better for you to hit this kind of places. The food is simply delicious. Also at the same night, I had fulfilled another of my wishlist this year – iPod nano (finally). Then on the next night, we went back to Queensbay but this time, we tried one of the Chinese restaurants nearby the mall. I’d rather not to discuss about the details of this night (should have gone to Pastasia or Wong Kok). Our last night in Penang we had spent in Gurney Plaza. I have made a pleasant discovery there. Sean John’s fragrance Unforgivable is exquisite and bold (added into my wishlist). We also had dinner at Dome where I had enjoyed the best spaghetti I have tasted so far (but the coffee is just so-so).

Penang CONVEX TripQueensbay Mall

Penang CONVEX TripTGI Fridays’ Chicken Diablo Pasta

Penang CONVEX TripTGI Fridays’ signature, the Mud Choc Pie

Penang CONVEX TripGurney Plaza

Penang CONVEX TripBattle of cheesecakes – Starbucks and Secret Recipe

Penang CONVEX TripDome’s Chicken Mushroom Spaghetti

Penang CONVEX TripThe infamous Gurney Drive open-air food court.Finally on Sunday night, our buses departed from USM main campus and it was yet another treacherous ride back to our campus. My only regret for this trip is joining the CONVEX itself. I had not known that classes were cancelled during that week and this eventually allows time to go to Penang by own expenses, rather than joining the CONVEX convoy. Mistakes learned. Also I would like to give my compliments to Rapid Penang for their exemplary service and efficiency. Moving around Penang is no longer a hassle with their bus services.

Penang CONVEX TripRapid Penang – Comfort, Efficient and Friendly.

Penang CONVEX TripThe long-awaited iPod nano is mine!

4 Responses to “Work and Play in Penang”

  1. 1 you-know-who
    29 August 2007 at 5:10 am

    dude~ you have an iPod nano now? cool~ hahaha….

  2. 2 douglas(proper),dokles,dogeres
    18 September 2007 at 12:26 am

    huhuh,hope u had a good time. cheers!

  3. 8 February 2015 at 12:29 pm

    For latest news you have to pay a visit world wide web and on internet
    I found this site as a finest site for most recent updates.

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