Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Enough Said.....

I'm officially a LOMA FLMI. Woooottt!!

P/s: Its not really a big deal but I'm glad that I finished the race which has been quite the marathon. And ok, I'll admit that, aside from all my complaining, it has been really worth it.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

A blog about nothing at all.

9 papers down. 1 more to go. Tomorrow. All I got to do is to pass so that it will not be another 6 months of waiting for the next round and hell, I really want to go and start on something else.

Almost 2 years in the running. Weekends and weekdays spent going through textbooks and course materials. Juggling between work and studying. Remembering and then forgetting. Time wasted and yet not wasted. Trying to have a balanced life as much as humanly possible. Looking back, it is almost becoming a blur for me and I know that the memories will further fade away. Before all that happens, I will further lament: Where has all the time gone?

I’m ranting because it’s a Sunday afternoon and I’m supposed to feel refreshed and prepared for another week of work. Yet, as you can probably guess by now, I’m tired, stressed out and bored out of my wits. DAMN!

This is all going to be worth it. I can only hope. I’m just grouchy today…believe me – Cramming on Business Law for Financial Services Professional can bring out "certain" feelings in you. Anyway, Res Judicata (The matter has been decided.)

Friday, June 12, 2009

View from Sharjah office, UAE

This photo was taken by a wide lens camera from the heli-pad at the Sharjah office, UAE. (Not taken by me...I don't have such a professional camera).

Sharjah can go up to an unbearable temperature of 40 degrees in the day time. The air is so humid that the streets are almost deserted because it is too hot to walk outside. A 10 minute walk from one building to another is best done in a car.

Despite it all, don't you think that the view is just so amazing? Its indescribable when you see it right in front of you.

Photo taken from the helipad at Sharjah, UAE

Khan El Khalili and Others

Khan El Khalili is a very important place with historical background. It was a Turkish bazaar during the Ottoman period and was built in 1382 by the Emir Djaharks el-Khalili in the heart of the Fatimid City. Today, it is affectionately called the "Khan" and has over 900 stores selling all sorts of interesting souveneirs to take home. Nearby by the Khan is the Al Azhar University and Sultan Hassan Mosque. Al Azhar University was founded in 975 and is the chief centre of Arabic literature and Sunni Islamic learning in the world. A large proportion of Muslims in Egypt are Sunnis.

Khan El Khalili at night

KFC in Egypt

Cruise on Nile River with colleague

Cairo Tower taken from the boat
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Some more photos from Cairo

I was staying on Zamalek. Its a small island surrounded by the Nile River. I heard that there are over 200 such islands on the Nile River but Zamalek is famous for being the exclusive and rich area. Its also very safe because that's where all the embassies are situated.

Hotel swimming pool and Nile River

View of Nile River from my balcony

Cairo Musuem with amazing collection from the Old, Middle and New Kingdom.

On the platoon boat at the Phaoronic Village

I found the trip to the Cairo Museum extremely worthwhile. It cost about 60 L.E (Egyptian pounds) to get into the museum and another 100L.E to see the mummies. I don't know what possessed me but I HAD TO SEE the mummies and ended up being the only one from the group who wanted to pay and go in. Seeing royal bodies that have been mummified for over 4000 years is quite a strange experience for me. Another place worth visiting is the Phaoronic Village. It gives a nice summary of the kind of lives the ancient egyptian lived thousands of years ago.
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Thursday, June 11, 2009

Pyramids of Giza

Went on a business trip to Cairo 2 weeks ago and had the opportunity to spend a couple of days to see the historical sites.

3 Interesting points to note:
1) The Great Pyramid of Giza (Khufu pyramid) is the only remaining member of the Seven wonders of the Ancient world and was constructed over a 20 year period around 2560 B.C.
2) It has around 2.3 million blocks, each weighing 2 tons.
3) The height of the pyramid was 146 meters but with erosion its current height is 138 meters.

I was very fortunate this trip because even though the operating hours of the pyramid grounds officially end at 5pm, I was able to gain "VIP" access to the grounds after 6.30pm. The good news is that our "crew" (friends and I) had the whole place to ourselves and did not have to fight with the other tourists for that picture perfect moment. :P

I will always remember the day that I visited the pyramids (which all my life, I've wanted to visit) as the same day that Obama came to Egypt and was at the Cairo University giving his "monumental" speech to the Muslim World.

During the hours that he was in town, the streets and offices were closed for security reasons. Business must have been really bad that day at the pyramids because the tourist office made an exception to let us into the pyramid grounds after the official hours at the regular rate. Wooottt!

Here are some photos:

Pyramid of Khafra

Graffitti on Khufu pyramid dating back to 1924!!

Taking photos at some ruins with strong wind blowing at my face

Cool Arabic sign (Parking area for tourist buses). Haha!
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