Typed on Monday, 7 May
Haha. I was doing Maths exercises (two chapters behind the one we’re learning right now ) when, as usual, I started to drift off and think of some other distraction to do. The internet is kaput, I’m not hungry, I already had a near 3-hour nap (shhh!), so not in the mood to work on my Arch assignment, and then, “Ah, my blog entry!”. I wanted to write this —
Oh, crap. What a terrible laptop I have. The cooling error just popped-up. I didn’t know Dreamweaver uses this much power/memory/juice/whatever. ‘Cause I noticed the error only pops up when I’m working on something “heavy”, like Photoshop, or Flash (even just playing Flash). Oh well, I shall ignore this two-second lag between the time I press the key on the keyboard and when the letter actually appears onscreen.
Anyway, wanted to write this entry over the weekend, but yeah, too busy. With … weekend stuff. So I just uploaded whatever I had to upload, saved a previous snippet of an entry that I had written as a draft, and I guess I’ll continue from where I left off:
Typed on Saturday, 5 May
Oh oh ew ew ew ew ew ew! I just saw a rat. Mouse. Rat. Whatever. Downstairs. In the chest of drawers, to get my towel. I only remembered seeing a big, grey, and roundish creature move, followed by a longish thing, and then it registered in my brain…
And I positively yelped, ran and jumped on the sofa, clutching my youngest brother, my mouth trying to form sounds that aren’t nonsense. “Yaaa … aahh … *whiny sounds* — ADEEE TIKUSSSSSSSS!!!” Eurgh. (All my brother said was, “Aneesah is overreacting”. [Yes, in English. Private schooler, psh.] Eh, whatever kid. You’re not the one who saw the Gigantic Rat from Hell. :shakefist: ) Then I ran upstairs while our maid pulled out the drawers and everything, but no rat (or mouse. I can’t tell the difference.) so far. Whateverrrr.
(I asked her to pass my towel to the first floor too. I don’t know when I’ll be able to go downstairs again. )
This wasn’t the first time I’ve seen a rat/mouse/other household pests, but it’s been a while. The old house had tons of ’em, the most memorable sight was when I was going up the staircase, and as the hall/landing came into sight, I saw this little long-tailed dude sitting happily on the carpet, sniffing around. (And yes, like today’s incident, I scurried away in search of our maid. ) We used to put traps too, and my dad had to um, take the victims out and dispose them. Some were baby rats, some were caught just a few minutes after the trap was refilled… *shudder*
I don’t consider myself a girly, cowardish person who shrieks at the top of her lungs at the first sight of something icky, but yeah, I tend to start/startle/flinch/wince violently and “scream inside”, as I call it, or GASP really suddenly whenever one of these encounters happen. Like at camp the other day, the indoor hall had frogs (yes, the *ribbit ribbit* kind), and at first I saw this tiny one near the door, and it hopped inside when we opened it. Fine, no big deal, I saw frogs inside the day before too.
But when I entered … oh. my. God. The most gigantic dark green king frog I’ve ever seen right there in the corner, about 5 times the size of the little frog that had just entered. Ewwww. Then I got goosebumps and the whole chill-up-my-spine thing. It just sat still though, and after a few seconds when I calmed a bit I tried shooing it away (my geli-ness, as I’d call it in Malay, only lasts a short while), but it just … stayed. Stationary. I convinced myself it was dead (or sleeping) and ignored it all night. (The indoor hall was where we did our prayers. I heard that the next morning there was also a frog incident, I guess it finally moved or jumped or something. Good thing I wasn’t there… )
Overall, it was … fun. Haha, surprising comment from somebody who hates camping and tents and mosquitoes and sweating and heat and sweating and heat and mosquitoes and — you get the idea. I’m glad we planned the whole thing ourselves instead of like, letting the camp people handle everything (it was a real training centre, they have these packages/modules, but since we were saving budget like hell — no, I should stop saying the word hell. Let’s use heaven instead — we only booked a few activities from them, and 2 meals per day, and used the campsite and restroom and indoor hall). The gaps in the schedule were filled with games and walking around and swimming (or in my case, sitting on a rock and dipping my feet ) in the river … basically anything we wanted to do.
(Ooh. I just noticed the special keys on my laptop that controls the brightness of the screen. I’ve always thought the backlight was too strong whenever the power’s plugged in, and since the Toshiba Power Control menu thingy in Settings is all bonkers, I didn’t know I could adjust it anymore. Cool, cool. The amazingness of the Fn — what does it stand for, BTW? — key! )
So, camping camping. I guess I’ll just talk about the highlights, whatever I still remember about it. It was on Friday, 21st April till Sunday. I was really stressed the Wednesday night before, ’cause people started to withdraw from the camp all of a sudden; one after the other. (If you’ve noticed, at the end of the last entry I had to edit the number of participants a couple of times… ) See, the camp’s just a club thing, it’s not compulsory, but when planning, for the budget/activities/etc., we assumed all 54 members would be going, until they said they didn’t want to (or were too busy or worried about upcoming tests), or had some other unavoidable plans. I was fine with everything until the number kinda got lower than I expected. And until my friend Kim messaged to say, “Sorry bout so many of us skipping the camp. Must be so sucky for you especially after all the hard planning.” and I started to think; well, yeah. It was hard planning. Countless meetings, countless changes, countless times my jaw dropped after hearing bad news about this this this, countless hours of doing research and e-mailing and SMSing and asking here and there… I guess I did feel sad inside that lots of people weren’t going (like from my class [there are 3 classes], only 6 out of 16 people joined! ), I was just trying to suppress it.
(But don’t feel bad, Kim. :P)
In the end 37 of us went, plus two lecturers, so 39 people. PERFECT for filling in one bus. (A few people more and we probably would’ve needed another car or another bus. The buses were provided by our college, free of charge, but still — 39 was a good number. )
Then it came to packing for the three days. Packing is not one of my strengths, (especially for things like camping. Indoors-y, air-cond-loving Aneesah attempting to pack for camp? ) but we’ve had a camp-like programme last year too, the school adoption thingy in Malacca I think I blogged about, and through that I’ve learned more about what (and what not) to bring on things like these…
We left from the hostel at 3-something pm, and it took about an hour plus to reach there. I didn’t even get to sleep in the bus, bleh. So we reached there, had that long walk carrying not only our stuff, but also tents and sleeping bags. (All borrowed from our college’s Student Affairs department — it feels good to save on budget! ) Had a short briefing session with the people there (inside the — gasp — air-conditioned hall ), then set-up camp at the campsite, which was really just the grassy area beside the hall. There were a few issues with the tents (the one we started setting up was way small for three girls, but in the end there was some switching around so 15 girls had 5 tents [of different sizes, though — so one had 4 people, and one 2] and the rest were for the boys), there weren’t enough of those L-shaped metal rods to secure the tents to the ground (whataretheycalledagain? ) but they managed to borrow some from the people-in-charge there.
My first bad experience started soon enough, when we were tying some string to these palm trees to make a clothes line, and I … accidentally stepped right on an anthill at the base of one of the trees. I felt a sharp, sharp pain on one of my toes and saw this swarm of big black ants (I thought they were kerengga s but they’re usually reddish brown, not black) on the ground. OH CRAP.
Tried ignoring the pain for a few seconds, but no. Ow ow ow ow, it was sooooooo not like a mosquito bite or anything else I’ve ever experienced. I didn’t know ants have venom, man. :shakefist: The side of the toe started swelling red, but thank God for Ekin‘s oil/ointment thingy. She quickly spread some on the bite and I massaged it around and it felt better after a few minutes. There’s still kind of a scab at that spot, though, and it’s been more than two weeks! Lesson learnt: watch what you’re stepping on / ants are as evil as mosquitoes.
(Oops. Okay wait, maybe that wasn’t the first bad experience. I kinda twisted my back muscle somehow while getting out of a tent, that was so weird. Oh, and while sitting in the hall that night I managed to [accidentally] give my toes a cramp; they stuck out in a very weird manner and I couldn’t control them back to their proper positions! Thanks Sa’a for straightening them out again, I was almost freaking out. )
Day 1 — again, sorry for the non-Malaysians!That evening … we had prayers, walked around the camp area (it’s surrounded by a river — which we visited whenever we could ), had dinner, and that night we had ice-breaking activities inside the hall. The Activity Bureau handled these stuff (in fact, most of the high-committee’s work was in planning the event, all the stuff that happens before the programme itself. In terms of managing stuff, I was pretty much stress-free throughout the whole camp. ) and they did a great job. (I hope some of them are reading this. ) Late at night we had a Night Walk, i.e. trekking the jungles at midnight in almost total darkness for whatever reason that I haven’t figured out yet. Aside from the slipping and stumbling and dropping my bottle of water (’cause I didn’t think of bringing my backpack along, see? ), and tracing our steps again to take another route ’cause the path we were initially heading was apparently “unsafe”, oh and the glow-in-the-dark leaves (they were all over the ground and glowed a soft green — super cool) … it was nothing much. Which is a good thing, really, because apparently they (the camp facilitators handled this activity) have um, different “levels” of scariness that they could do, and we chose the non-freaky one.
Sleeping in a tent that night. Hmm. It wasn’t that bad, I guess. The reason I couldn’t sleep at first was ’cause the others were still up; some singing, some playing cards and even the boys’ tents were very nearby, so I heard voices from everywhere. Mosquito bites; sure I got them throughout the 3 days, but hey — I’ve had more mosquito bites just standing outside my hostel block (or even sleeping on my bed in my room) back in Shah Alam at night, compared to being in the jungle or sleeping in a tent during the camp. Oh, and it was very hot. Inside the tent. We couldn’t really leave the opening open, ’cause of said boys’ tents factor, and yeah, it would’ve been really nice if we could’ve slept open air, under the stars. (The stars were awesome.) In the morning it was freezing though.
Woke up at around 6, for Subuh prayers. Man, I didn’t realise it was so hard to wake some of the girls up early in the morning. I think ’cause I’ve never had to wake people up before (really, my ex-housemates woke up on their own, I’ve always woken up on my own … well, my brothers at home are a different story , but yeah), it’s quite a … patience-testing task. Then we were supposed to have aerobic exercises but um, I think it kinda cancelled itself. Haha. This is what I meant by running the camp ourselves, if something in the schedule seems bleh we’ll conveniently “forget” about it.
WaterfallsThen we had breakfast, which consisted of food we brought ourselves, since we only ordered four meals in total; lunch and dinner. We shared bread and biscuits and cookies, etc. (Though I noticed this “sharing” was a bit one-sided. The boys were the ones that had the cooker/burner and yet they were also the ones begging for breakfast from us… Oh well. And haha, my big chocolate chip cookies were very popular. They’re a new brand my mother bought, called Pepperidge Farm. I think it’s American? Super yummy though, it could rival Famous Amos. ) Next was the main activity of the day; jungle trekking to the waterfall. Very fun, I think ’cause the waterfall was the “reward” at the end, so it didn’t feel that tiring or hot or sweaty since most of us ended up getting soaked from head to feet, playing with water. I didn’t plan on actually um, getting wet, but my friends are very good persuaders. It was great anyway, standing right under the falls and feeling the water beat on your back. Then we had lunch, right there in our wet clothes. I sat on the shallow water while having my meal, that was cool; eating on water.
Trekked back to the campsite, yadda yadda … That afternoon I think it was unofficially nap time but unfortunately it was wayyyy toooooo hot to stay in the tents. And guess what? The boys totally hogged the indoor hall (yes-the-air-conditioned-one ) and since we girls didn’t have any shaded areas (besides the oven-like tents) … it was … well, very hot. Just sat around, wishing the sun wasn’t burning like it was… Though I think some did sleep in the tents after all, I wonder how they managed that.
In the end, Miss Ewa, one of the lecturers who came along, invited us to sit over at the boys’ half of the campsite, there was a small shelter thing, and we played UNO cards. Again. I played the night before if I’m not mistaken, and I won both times too. Nyahahaha, Aneesah the UNO championnnn. (Nah, I don’t usually win when playing before this, like at home or school or wherever. I guess the cards were lucky or something. )
Another game the girls playedOh yeah, the girls also had these games we played whenever we couldn’t think of anything else to do. I dunno the real name, but I think it’s called Bzzz or Zzzz or something that sounds like that. Hard to explain, but basically it involves some hand signs and guessing and luck and quick skillz. Needless to say, I’m not very good at it , but it’s really addictive anyway. There were some other games too, and frisbee, which most of the ALEds are fanatics at.
Day 2Then we had … more games! Official activities this time. Balloon War involved … balloons (duh) filled with water and throwing them at each team’s Queen or King. I was my team’s Queen (whee I like the term “Queen”. I was Queen in a play at school once, for Malay Literature. It was a small class thing but hey, I even had a crown ), for the simple reason of … uh, I
don’t really like am not very good at throwing things and aiming and y’know, team sports stuff. The Queen’s job was to just pass a new balloon whenever the previous one’s gone SPLASH, and stay at the same spot (I wasn’t allowed to move!) while trying not to get hit by the other team’s balloons. I think for the first game we ran out of time (although I did get wet — or rather, my glasses did; the balloon exploded on Nik, my defender ) but we won the second time. (Though in the end, the results were kinda hanging … I think there were supposed to be more matches but they ran out of time or something. )
We were all supposed to play futsal afterwards but only the boys did. Oh, and there were leftover water balloons from the war (okay that just sounds peculiar. “Balloons leftover from the war.” ) and some of them tried to trick the rest to stand in the middle of the field while they had balloons hidden behind their backs, but it way obvious, dudes. A few people did get soaked, nevertheless!
River / RapidsI just like how this pic turned outWhat else…? That evening we went to the river (actually they’re called rapids, I think. The rocky, fast-flowing part of a river.) again, though I tried not to get wet ’cause I didn’t want my clothes or camera to. The vanity of my program-mates was proven then, and also before, ’cause whenever somebody sees somebody else with a camera, you’ll hear [person-with-camera]’s name being called, followed by cheesy poses and lots of peace signs. And these aren’t just the girls either, oh no.
After Maghrib prayers I was soooooooooooooo sleepy, mainly because I couldn’t get a nap (the hot tents, remember?) or much sleep the night before. My eyes were so teary from the sleepiness I was practically crying. So I got like a half-nap (on Qilah‘s lap, haha, thanks Qilah ) while waiting for Isyak prayers in the hall. I didn’t care what the boys thought, being sleepy can be hazardous… I just curled up and closed my eyes. ZzZzZzZz…
Okay then we had a barbeque (or barbecue or BBQ) dinner. Very yummy chicken wings and sausages and burgers (which I didn’t taste, though. Too full. ). The camp people only provided some of the food (raw chicken and fried noodles), so thanks to those who did the actual BBQ-ing. More games of Bzzz, some entertainment from Syukur who brought a guitar, and then the girls had to do the dishes. Nyeh. Even for the previous meals we had to wash our own dishes, but I guess since the BBQ wasn’t at the dining area, we were left to pick up all the dirty glasses and plates, and formed the Dishwashing Squad. It was fun anyway, haha. After that I went straight to sleep, though some songs were still blaring from another end of the resort. (There were two other groups of students/campers in the other two campsites while we were there, and either them, or some other people there had very loud music on. Sigh.)
Typed on Tuesday, 8 May
The last day. Main event was Explorace, kind of an obstacle/game-at-each-checkpoint kinda thing, handled by the facilitators. It was really … interesting, and I only wish we had more time. It was supposed to last 1-2 hours, but I dunno what made everybody take such a long time, to the point that it was already over 1 pm (it started in the morning) and we had to abandon some of the tasks/games and skip through. Some of the tasks involved were:
So, it was pretty fun and afterwards we had a closing talk from the camp people, cleaned ourselves up, packed the tents, and went hoooooooome… The plan was to have an actual closing ceremony, to give presents and everything but there wasn’t enough time so … it happened inside the bus. And this was about 4pm-ish. Our group (oh, I haven’t mentioned the group we were in for ice-breaking. Ours was named Batang Buruk, which is a traditional kuih that I admittedly don’t know of , but it also literally means, Ugly Sticks. Niiiiice. Blame the boys for choosing that! ) apparently got the first-place prize (which was a bunch of junk food that we splurged on several nights later), even though they ended up not counting any marks or having any actual placings. We did win the ice-breaking game though, which was writing a paragraph using only words that begin with a certain letter, in our case, P. We got 85 words!
KFCThen we reached the hostel and after soaking (some of) my laundry, I completely fell asleep. (Oh yeah, another unfortunate experience — I somehow cut my left foot on a rock or something right after getting out of the bus. Why, how; I dunno. But there was a small gash.) At 8pm that night I had to wake up to have dinner though, at KFC. They invited the whole 39 people to “celebrate” the end of a successful project… And yet right after that I had homework to do, and we had class the next day…
It was a good trip though, I’m glad I was part of the high committee (though I was freaking out when they first voted me as the assistant PD; considering the fact that I usually hate camps and am not a very … leader-ly person… ) and that it actually happened despite some rough spots. Admittedly, I might’ve been the committee member who did the least amount of work (it just turned out that way! My job mostly involved dealing with the resort company.), so thanks soooooooo much to Farhani the secretary, Aishah the treasurer, Anwar the PD, and Hanif/”Anep” the assistant secretary. Great working with you guys! And, I got to feel what it’s like to really be part of the ALEd family, since usually at the hostel and college, mostly the girls, are of different groups/cliques/packs since we stay at different hostel blocks and all. But we were together during those 3 days, helping each other out, everybody hanging out with everybody else. It made me feel proud. *aww*
Typed on Wednesday, 9 May
OH. Sheesh I forgot another bad experience. I still feel crappily guilty about this. See, my camera’s batteries were dying by the third day (which explains the lack of pictures during the third day), and I still wanted to take pictures of the Explorace and stuff. So I borrowed Farhani’s camera. She already warned me that it sometimes gives these Card Errors, etc. but when the error actually popped up, I didn’t know what to do. And Fani wasn’t around at that time. The screen read, “Format?” and then there were two options: Yes and No. I had a vague idea that Format means clearing out, erasing a hard drive or something, like on a computer. So I chose No. Multiple times. And yet it still said Card Error and I couldn’t take pictures at all. I turned the camera off and on a couple of times, choose No No No again, but still no difference. And then … then I made the stupidest, most foolish decision in my life — I hit Yes. And OH MY GODDD when I switched to Playback mode it said … it said … No Image! Aaaaaaaaaahhh you wouldn’t believe what an IDIOT I felt like. Nonononononono! When Fani came back I was crying out in despair … I apologised however many times I managed to. Sure the camera worked again, but I was supposed to turn the camera off by taking the batteries out and putting them back in, since just turning off the switch didn’t solve the error. WHY THE HELL did I not think of that?! (Okay there goes my attempt at using heaven instead of hell. ) I used to do that all the time with my old camera too; taking the batteries out. Fani said there were over 100 pictures already, and some of the other girls also had disappointed faces, since their pics were in there. Oh man oh man oh man I am soooooooo sorry girls! It was an honest mistake, I wasn’t thinking!
There were some pics in the camera’s internal memory, but very few. And in the end … erm, poor camera got water leaking into it somehow, despite us keeping it in a plastic bag all the while (I think it was during the rain, argh), and it … um, no longer functioned. Wouldn’t turn on. Poor poor Fani. I’m unsure of whether the pics taken after the memory card was wiped are still retrievable, but yeah; so unfortunate. Sigh… Fani took things well, she said don’t feel guilty and everything but EEEEEEEE I felt like hitting myself in the head. :shakefist: Ergh. Lesson learnt: Aneesah must NOT touch other people’s cameras. EVER. And always bring the damn camera charger!
Hmm. Most classes are over for this semester. Final exams start this Monday, till Friday. Architectural Communication class is still not settled, though. We have one more assignment to finish and after the exams for the other subjects, we might have a moderation thing in class. It’s when other Arch lecturers will come and see our works and judge whether the marks our lecturer gave us are … um, fair. I still haven’t even started on the assignment, which is a big poster-like design about a building (I’m doing the Taj Mahal. Again.), but it’s to be submitted after the exams. The sketch for it though, is due tomorrow. And I still have barely started revisions for Maths, Physics, Statistics, and Mechanics. (Basically all of my subjects, ha. ) And English too, but there’s nothing much to revise there…
So um, please pray for my finals, wish me luck (though I don’t really believe in luck, it’s just … fate ), and force me to start on the sketch ’cause I can’t seem to make myself do ittttt! Shoutout to my best friend Nabeelah who wrote a 12-page letter for me and my senior Amin who wanted to hear about the camping trip. And below are a few drawings and stuff, some of the thumbnails will bring you the full images when clicked. Taa!
My newest watch strapA gift I got from my English lecturer, for presenting my Mona Lisa speech again. Wasn’t that nice of her? ^^Lake drawing, again. The third is the final one, I got an A!Finished perspective drawing – Taj Mahal. My first A+!