Terengganu Bike Week 2012

The Event Stage

Last Friday I travelled for eight hours to Kuala Terengganu to buy an used engine for my old car. The appointment to meet the seller was on late Saturday afternoon. I was free in the morning and decided to drive along Batu Burok beach for photo outing.

Batu Burok Beach food vendors

There was a road block and I could not enter the beach road. I did not know that there was an event of the gathering of one thousand big capacity motorcycles from all over Malaysia (not sure about Sabah and Sarawak) including guests from Singapore and Thailand. It was Terengganu Bike Week 2012. So I parked the vehicle at a nearby food centre and walked in.

The main gathering point

The gathering was held at a small beachside amphitheatre. It was still early and not all the participants had arrived. I did not move around, I just sat at one location observing and recording the happenings. Amongst all the riders two were definitely ladies. One riding a Harley Davidson and the other I think was sport motocross. I cannot vouch if there were others as it was not easy to tell some of them apart with their helmets on. I was wrong a few times.

Honda's Gold Wings

Harley Davidson

The minimalist and the sports

Choppers of other makes

Man looking at the Harley of a lady rider

This one admiring the street sports while in the background musicians rehearsing for the night show

My kind of bike. You don't hear it coming, you just see it leaving and smell its smoke

The Marshals

The Gang

The girls distributing drinks for one of the sponsors

Veteran rider

Official videographer at work

When it was time, the bikers moved in a convoy like manner to Tasik Kenyir (Kenyir Lake) and back to the beach making side trips to an old folks home, Jom Heboh Carnival (held by Malaysia TV3 station at Gong Batu Badak if I am not mistaken) and the Islamic Civilisation Garden along the way. While they were gone, I sat and watched the musicians rehearsing for the night’s dinner show.

Getting ready for the journey

I left the beach at noon. Along the way I missed the opportunity to photograph a very veteran biker with an equally very veteran bike. I think it was a BSA from the glimpse that I had of the writing on the fuel tank. In the fifties and early sixties, there were not many brands in the region. The Japanese makes and Ducatis was considered new at that time. There were the Nortons, Triumphs, BSAs and very few AJSs. There was a pun on the acronym of the AJS motorcycle in Malay. It stood for Asal Jalan Sudah, meaning as long as it moves it’s okay.

Note: Panorama photos stitched by Microsoft ICE (Image Composite Editor) 64 bit.

F1 2012 Malaysian GP in Pictures

Note: Panorama photos stitched by Microsoft ICE (Image Composite Editor) 64 bit version.

F1 2012 Malaysian GP

Sepang Circuit Main Entrance

This year I attended the full 3 days event of the F1 2012 Malaysian GP. For two nights I slept in the car and camped in the R&R of the North-South highway. It had all the necessities that I need, food, shower and sanitation 24/7.

Friday’s practices were opened to the public but the public pit-lane walk held after the practice sessions was only for ticket holders. It was nice to be at the grandstand watching the happenings opposite at all the garages. The sound of an F1 car engine at the grandstand was obviously much louder than that heard at the hillstands. Although there were other events on Saturday morning, I just attended the practice 3 and qualifying sessions which were held in the afternoon as I decided to have a rest in the morning.

Caterham F1 Team

Drivers’ autograph signing session was held on Sunday at 11.30 am. I was a little dismayed. The cars that brought the drivers stopped close to the tables, many fans that were far away including me could not get full view of many of the drivers. The cars then parked in the open area, further blocking the view. After the autograph signing session the drivers then had a short walk to the cars, so many fans on the outer perimeter missed to see them. I hope the event organiser will consider this and sort this out next time.

Waiting for the drivers

Nothing to see, move along

Sebastian Vettel waving to fans

Sebastian Vettel, as was in last year, handed out postcards to fans at the perimeter fence but this time he did more, he signed it too…lucky fans. Then another driver surprised me. I saw this driver took photograph of himself and the fans at the tables with a cellphone. I thought it was a request from a fan but then I was wrong. As the car that he was in was pulling out, it suddenly stopped. Out came Fernando Alonso and went straight to a Ferrari fan just an arm length next to me. He then said something about taking photograph which sent me into frantic mode, adjusting my camera setting to capture the event with the camera held up high above since there was someone next to me. Unfortunately the images I managed to capture were frantic too except for one. He then rushed out to the outer perimeter and did the same to the fans there. Obviously the fans were very pleased. What Vettel and Alonso did was good for them. At least it detracted their mind, albeit a short while, from the stress or whatever problems they might be having with their cars. It also paints a good image for their teams and sponsors, a very positive image.

Sebastian signing before giving it away

Fernando Alonso setting the cellphone camera

Can't believe her luck

Obviously they were very delighted

Fans are the most important aspect in F1. Without the fans, there will be no sponsors and without the fans and sponsors, F1 is just another club race. Some travel long distances, stand in queue or close to the perimeter fence for more than an hour just to see their idols and other drivers up close. The drivers just need to look around, smile and wave, that’s all but what Vettel and Alonso did was better. F1 needs to take note on this.

For this year’s race, I was at the C3 hillstand and it was my first wet race. I did not mind being wet but the camera and the lens must stay dry. Though it was cloudy since Friday, there was no rain at the track until just after the race had started. When the race was stopped for safety reason, a few of the fans did left the circuit. I only left the hillstand for the comfort of the car where I had a thermos full of hot coffee. I rejoined the crowd when the race had restarted.

C3 Hillstand view and the weather

Click here for more pictures.

A Modern Day Kampung By The Water – Kampung Pendas Baru

In my early childhood, I lived in a wooden stilt house on a river bank of a branch of Kallang River, Singapore. It was attached to my maternal grandparents house. There was a bridge behind our house that linked our house to our grandparents house. It was here that we clean ourselves. Then there was another that stretched out into the river and at the end of it there was a hut where we disposed off our organic waste.   I remember very well the sound made when it hit the water or mud, it seemed to reverberate vividly in the closed compartment.  Those were the days.

I was delighted when I saw a new kampung by the water at Tanjung Kupang, on the southwestern end of Johor, Malaysia. A modern kampung of stilt houses built of bricks. Yeah, sadly with the dwindling forest, woods had became scarce and expensive. Besides, wood is combustible, easily incinerated and thus reduced to ash, so it’s for the better.

It is a modern kampung because other than brick houses on stilts there are no more hut for organic waste removal to be seen. Classic and yet modern. The folks were relocated here from their old domicile of Kampung Pendas not far away. I waited for the day when the tide is high to go there for photo outing. It was last Wednesday and here are the images.

Bought a Tamrom 17-50mm F2.8 XR Di II Lens

Tamron 17-50mm F2.8 XR Di II


In the days of film photography, there are two factors in getting a sharp picture. The main one is the nut that holds the camera. The other is the lens (disregard the ISO). Now, in the age of digital photography, there are two more variables to be considered. The camera sensor and the demosaicing algorithm that manipulates the data captured by the sensor into an image. There are a few of these algorithms to choose from, each with its pros and cons. Then again, it all come back to square one. It is still the same main factor, that is the nut that holds the camera and probably the same nut that holds the mouse.

This nut is so much impressed with the reviews by some of the reviewers and users, many say it is sharp, that he decided to throw away some money to get hold of this lens to replace his Canon EF-S 17-85mm F4-5.6 IS USM lens. The downside is shorter range (not much of a problem) and no IS which this nut can lives without. On the upside, the maximum aperture is fixed at f2.8 throughout the zoom range and it can be attached to a Kenko 1.4x extender that this nut had, unlike the Canon EF-S lens where the mount protruded a little extra.

It is not the intention of this nut to do a review of this lens. Generally this nut does not scrutinise all over an image with a magnifying glass looking at the minutest detail  unless it is an image of the opposite gender in birthday suit. Usually this nut just go with the feeling. If an image is good, it definitely looks good.

With this new lens, this nut went out to capture some images of a modern kampung by the water in Southern Johor. Images of the kampung taken with this lens will soon be posted here and hopefully it will be better than the other lens.

Note: This nut was thinking too much on how to make this world a better place to live that he forgot to bring along the old lens so that he can make a comparison.

/nut mode off