Friday, February 3, 2012

Memory Lane - The Pilot of Flashbacks

Today, four years ago, I landed in The United States of America on a quest to find my Andalusia at West. Today's date is February 4th 2012, but the date I landed in US four years ago was February 3rd 2008. The reason I still say that "it is today four years ago" is because by the time I landed in US February 3rd 2008 it was already February 4th 2008 in Malaysia. So my sense of date is not lost.

I have no picture for that memorable day as I didn't expect I would be writing about it in a memory lane for my own motivation to go to back to The US. My plan was to write about it as the starting point of my life in the promised land. Apparently the promised land is playing hard to get and has been asking more from me.

Nonetheless I would be writing about something that might be good for those who would like to take a budget but worth paying trip to the entertainment capital of the world - Los Angeles.

As I arrived in LAX (Los Angeles International Airport) I went downtown[1] to stay in Cecil Hotel [Google Maps Link]:

Cecil Hotel on the Google Maps

The hotel looks descent enough from the outside:

Cecil Hotel on the Google Maps street view

But it really is a budget but worth paying for hotel. The rooms are big and clean enough to be considered small hotel rooms. But the showers and toilets are shared. No wifi in the room but it is reliable enough and free in the lobby. I chose the hotel because it is the cheapest in LA downtown, close to an LA Metro Rail station, and a walking distance to many LA's hotspots. The hotel actually appeared in one of Astro's documentary channel on something like 'the best bargain in LA'. If I'm not wrong it might be one of the episodes of The Lonely Planet.

You can find a review on the hotel in:
And I've capture the most reliable, honest and open-minded review:
Let me remind you that this is the downtown of the third highest crime rate city in US. So it is advisable to explore the area during daylight and stay indoor after 5pm.

In case you flew all the way from Malaysia and looking for Malaysian Food in California, you can find one in Alhambra. I have documented it in one of my week's journal:
Alhambra is a separate municipal in Los Angeles County, but you still can reach it using public bus services or LA Metro Rail. Just Google for "City of Alhambra".

And if you go to Disneyland in Annaheim, Orange County, you may also want to pay a visit to an Indonesian Warong Pojok in Garden Grove. You can find it in the same week's journal entry of mine.

I stayed in the hotel for two days to shop for some cheap winter clothing. In a future posting I would write about another budget place to stay in Santa Monica near Los Angeles. This was the hostel where I stayed few months before that memorable day I landed in America on the quest for Andalusia@West.

[1]Downtown in US refers to city center. This may cause confusion as most Malaysians refer the word downtown as the outskirt of the city.


Sunday, January 15, 2012

UPNM's Excellent Academic Award (Anugerah Akademik Cemerlang) 2011

December 23rd 2011 UPNM organized its first academic award at Putrajaya Marriott Hotel. The categories are research, book writing, publication and teaching. I proudly nominated myself for three of the categories. But too bad I didn't win anything. It is tough to beat those seniors who already have strong track records.

Me and the bunch at the table:

However, Miss Khadijah from the Department of Electrical & Electronics Engineering had won one of the Teaching Award. Congratulations to her for proving that young people can!

As consolation for those who didn't win anything like me, we also got something:

Its a 4GB SanDisk


Thursday, January 12, 2012

AKEPT's Program Pembangunan Kepimpinan Tunas Akademia

I had involved a lot with politics during my service in MMU but I didn't hear anything about AKEPT. Even though I'm not really that young but I'm still required to attend the Tunas Akademia program from December 19th to 21st handled at Palm Garden Resort Putrajaya. I also just found out that UPNM is actually the Secretariat for Zon Tengah.

The main target for such program is to ensure that the academics, especially the young ones, are inline with the government's inspiration. It is not entirely politics but the stress is also put on their academic competency.

One of the talk.

Me during my group presentation of our discussion outcome. It was presented by Miss Hajar from UiTM.