Monday, June 29, 2015

List of Airlines That I've Experienced

I have this little addiction in trying different kind of airlines every-time I travel. Thus the reason why I love putting as much countries as possible in one short time-frame so that I can fly more often. Hehehe. Each of the airlines I've tried and airports I've been through gave me some unforgettable memories. From the check-in time possible 5 minutes before boarding (NOK Air of Thailand), the full body scan by entering a large scanning machine (Domodedevo Aiport in Moscow, Russia), lotion and soap sniffing customs officer (Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II Airport of Palembang, Sumatera), five-star experience of Turkish Airlines... yeahh... and so many more! It just makes me love flying even more!
View from Egypt Air from Jordan to Cairo. 

So here's a list of Airlines I've personally flew with. Will update this page from time to time when I fly with other airlines or remembered some that I did but forgot to mention. :)

  1. Malaysian Airlines
  2. AirAsia
  3. Malindo Air
  4. INDIGO Airlines (India)
  5. Lion Air (Indonesia)
  6. Korean Air
  7. Jeju Air (Korea)
  8. EastarJet (Korea)
  9. Jetstar (Australia)
  10. Vietnam Airlines
  11. Norwegian Air
  12. WOW air (Iceland)
  13. EasyJet (UK)
  14. LOT Air (Poland)
  15. NOK Air (Thailand)
  16. Qatar Airlines
  17. Pegasus Airlines (Turkey)
  18. Aegean Airlines (Greece)
  19. Egypt Air
  20. Turkish Airlines
How about you guys? Do you remember which airlines you've flown with? And which ones were your favorite ones? I have to say... Turkish Airlines were the best for me in terms of flight experience and FOOD! Haha.

Oh well... happy traveling peeps! See you in a next post (I hope). :P

Sunday, May 31, 2015

How to Pack for Your Hiking Trip?

Ever fell in a river while hiking and had all your stuff in your backpack wet, resulting in a very heavy pack on your back?  The bad luck doesn't end there though... you had 5 hours more of hiking to do before you reach your next destination! Wet clothes combined with heavy wet backpack! Gahh!!

One unlucky hiker also shared his experience of having all his clothes and sleeping bag wet when he hiked in the rain. He reached the peak with no dry clothes and ended up sleeping in the tent, cold with only the heat from his buddies to warm him.

I learnt it the hard way. So did he.

And so... as experience had it... I readjusted my packing method and become better at it. Hope this "common" piece of information help other hikers out there on how to pack their stuff. To avoid what happened to me, happening to them. Fair trade, no?

The Essential Things You Need on a Hiking and Camping Trip
Rules I learnt when hiking and camping in the tropical forests:

  1. Always keep your stuff DRY. So each items are stored in a drybag according to usage. I had my sleeping clothes and sleeping bag in one drybag. Wet tissues, small cosmetic items and headlamp in one small drybag and all the other clothes in one drybag. Food has it's own bag too.
  2. To pack light, two sets of clothing is enough. One to change when what you're wearing is WET. And another set ESPECIALLY for sleeping only. You could be in the jungle for 2 to 5 days. 2 sets are enough. Trust me. Bring more if you can carry more weight. Hehe. The cold is a SILENT KILLER. Stay warm and dry is important during the night.
  3. Wet tissues are handy when you need to poo-poo and other stuff. 
  4. Food rich in carbs are good for energy -- kurma, peanuts, chocolate 
  5. Socks! Need more than one set especially if it is rainy season! 
  6. Extra large plastic bags (120 liters) is good to become your bag's rain cover. And also to put your bag in during the night so that it keeps dry.
  7. Dry bags are better than wet bags. Why? If your stuff are wet... It gets more HEAVIER and you die carrying the extra weight! 
  8. Plastic bag is also used to store all of these items and then put into your bag. Hehe.
  9. Oh and yeah... Was kidding about the dying part. Have any more tips? Do share!?
And this is how my bag will look like before storing all the stuffed drybags.

And this is what happens to the 120 liters plastic bag. 
The sleeping mat which normally is attached on the outside of the hiking bag is preferred to put INSIDE the bag instead. Why?

It gives the bag a nice cylinder shape and protects as a hard outer layer for your stuff. As seen in the picture above, I have entered my mat inside the plastic bag and then put it into my backpack. After it is well positioned in the bag, only then I put all my drybags inside in this order.

1 ---- sleeping bag first. Should be at the bottom of the bag.
2 ---- other clothes
3 ---- tent (if any)

Double protection from the rain right? Hahaha. Triple protection when you add a rain-cover to your bag. :)

Your rations and cooking utensils are stored on the top. Water bottles on the side and voilla!!! You're ready for your hiking trip!

Daypacks on the other hand is a totally different matter. You could figure that yourself. Bye!   

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Couchsurfing and the Azan

I accepted a couchsurfing request sometime last week when I didn't know things were about to get crazy for me after that. I didn't foresee my 'lill sister was coming to stay with me during the same weekend my couchsurfer from Ukraine was coming. And I certainly didn't foresee that my parents were also coming a few days after for a heart operation at Institut Jantung Malaysia (Malaysia's Heart Institution).

Even after knowing all of these things were gonna happen on the same week.. I didn't have the heart to cancel the couchsurfer's request and just allowed her to come. At that time, I probably had thought of a dozens of excuses to cancel the request but it never fall through. Haha. And so she came and I was hoping that she wouldn't mind being cramped in a small room with my sister and I.

Thankfully... all my housemates were not home during that long Thaipusam weekend except for one girl. And my sister was being very hospitable. Since it was a public holiday, I was free to bring my guest around KL for some sight-seeing without being tied up with office work.

One funny moment happened that washed away all my doubts in hosting couchsurfers. An adorable moment. My guest heard a loud sound through the loudspeakers in my neighborhood and the conversation started like this :

Guest : Did you hear that? What is that man singing about?
My sister : Oh, that's the azan. A calling for prayers.
Guest : Azan?
My sister : We Muslims are being called five times a day to pray by this "singer". It's like a reminder so that we don't forget. 
Guest : It sounds lovely. I never been to a Muslim country.

I smiled when I heard their conversation. And this is why I love hosting and being hosted on I get to share my culture and the way of living of a local with foreigners. Let them know... hey.. Malaysia is a beautiful country and yeah, we're not terrorists! Hahaha!

With my guest, Lika at KLCC.
My head and heart lightened up after that and I continued to be the gracious host despite having doubts of hosting when times were getting tough. I shall not forget the reason why I joined couchsurfing in the first place as I believe in the site's aim in creating.. “a world made better by travel and travel made richer by connection”.. Praise thee god for the life given.  :)

PS: The news about guests being raped is shocking! I hope I won't have such experience when I couchsurf!

Monday, January 26, 2015

Trekking to Pisang Waterfalls via the Twin Drains

Who would've known that there's a waterfall just within Kuala Lumpur.. Situated in Gombak, Pisang Waterfalls is fast becoming popular among waterfall hunters and also a perfect place to escape the hustle-bustle of the big city.

Some time last year, I was hosting a couchsurfer from Philippines. She had another local friend in KL and the three of us altogether decided to trek to Pisang Waterfalls. I never heard about this place until that day her male friend told us about it.

So it happened like this.... her friend would pick us up from an arranged spot and he will drive us to the starting point of Pisang Waterfalls trail. I was surprised to know that it was very close to KL! Our driver parked his car at the side-road, paid a parking fee of RM5 and a nominal entrance fee of RM1 per person,.. and off we go!

We got our stuff that consist of extra clothing, towels, water and packed lunch, and started our trek, with our male friend leading the way.

And to where first?

To two HUGE DRAINS with water going through it!

The famous twin drains that will lead us to the enclosed Pisang Waterfalls.