Taichung, Taiwan

Taichung City is a municipality located in center-western Taiwan. Taichung has a population of over 2.7 million people, making it the third largest city on the island after New Taipei City and Kaohsiung. An aboriginal revolt broke out there in 1731 after Chinese officials had moved in and compelled them to provide labor.

The city is now a modern industrial seaport but with many nature attractions and cultural attractions such as temples and a mosque (Taichung Mosque). Pic attached and attributed to Lina Chen El-fatih (https://www.facebook.com/zulfa.elmustfathsyatibi). Other pic @Zikra Yanti (https://www.facebook.com/zikra.yanti)/ All mosque and mosque related pics from Tachung Mosque’s unofficial Facebook Page.

I pinged my friend and Instagram follower @ping.l.y on IG, a Taichung school teacher and selfie specialist (pic attached) who pointed me to the amazing Gaomei Wetlands of Taichung with beautiful sunsets and wind turbines of the Taiwan Power Company. I contacted http://www.gaomei.com.tw and one helpful Vincen said I can use one of the pics suggested by Ping. (pic of wetland attached)

I love my job as the webmaster of MyCen Hotels, as I learn something new every day.

Many hotels in Taichung with reduced room rates found here: http://www.mycen.my/taichung-hotel-deals-finder/

#taichung #taiwan #wetlandands #gaomei #mycenhotels #sunset #japanesecolonialism #nature #travel #mosque #masjidtaichung

A Heartwarming And Heartbreaking Moment

As I was at Sup Hussin the other day,and while waiting for the breaking of fast, I saw something heartwarming. I saw a mamak (Indian Muslim) employee or maybe the boss himself feeding homeless cats with kibbles from a biscuit tin.

It can be more than altruism though. Hungry, homeless cats might beg by nudging the feet of customers and irritate or scare some people.

It was heartening and heartbreaking at the same time, for me. The scene triggered some sadness for me. I used to feed some random stray street cats from a biscuit tin previously too. I can no longer feed them because buying of pet food is so expensive and I have 5 other hungry cats at home to feed too.

I can’t work after my discharge from hospital and my revenue is down to a trickle. I worry about the nameless, faceless and homeless cats everyday.

I can look for them and continue feeding again if someone kind or generous can donate some kibbles or a little money by PayPal to tvsmith@gmail.com

Thank you in advance. Thank you, mamak for feeding the hungry strays, not with scraps but with real pet food. I will proudly patronize your shop more whenever I can.

#suphusin #cats #cat #homelesscats #straycars #animalwelfare #mamak #soup #hussinsup #animallover

Valuable Lessons Learned

Valuable Lessons Learned.

Sharing my experience so others may learn or benefit when it happens. My Unifi Internet broadband connection went down with the landline since last night. Contacted a friend in TM but she couldn’t help much. She did suggest something helpful. She said one surefire way to get their attention is to tweet @TMConnects.

Interestingly and unexpectedly I received a SMS text via my mobile phone saying “Dear TM Customer apolozize [sic] there may be some delay in restoring svc (my phone number) at your area. Expected new restoration date by 20/05/2017 06:59 PM”. Unexpected, because I have not made an official report to TMnet as yet. What does this means? It means TMnet is now proactive and is able to detect a fault on its own! Wow. Haha. It is contacting customers automatically when they detect a fault? Amazing!

Anyway, I tweeted TMConnects and received a prompt reply. The reply said they checked and a fiber cable was broken about 1 km from the exchange and that immediate restoration was underway. Damn. I thought this type of problem was over without copper cables but improperly done digging can still damage optical cables, if that was the cause.

The Twitter Support is much better option than calling a support number with an endless queue and clueless operator. You get quick answers on Twitter DM. The handler is friendly and good humoured. But have your TM account number ready. And always have a backup via a phone with data and a Twitter account to have access to this support option. Get both done before disaster strikes.

Then another problem came about.

I have preciously tethered my PC with wireless hotspot with my previous Samsung phone. Oddly, it no longer works with my new Asus phone this time. Didn’t work with my mom’s Samsung too. I surrendered and let Microsoft troubleshooter analyze the connection problem. I rarely do that. It found another connection active. The PC has its own wireless receiver or dongle on the motherboard. I forgot all about a network cable plugged in. Pulled the cable out and wireless hotspot started working again. Phew!

If you find the tips useful, save it somewhere accessible offline. You won’t have Internet to read this when you are in a similar spot.

Pic: Slow speed capture of streaming evening city traffic made it looked like light pulses (data) passing through a fiber optic cable.

#tmnet #unifi #fiberoptic #fiber #fibre #optical #telco #internet #tm #tmconnects

Yangon Was Rangoon

Another helping friend booked a Myanmar hotel through me. The friend is a fairly experienced traveler to Myanmar and he picked the The RGN City Lodge, Downtown Yangon this time.

The hotel is conveniently located in the heart of Yangon, close to a major thoroughfare but fronts a much quieter street in a commercial district. Although there is old school rattan furniture in the room, the bathrooms have modern rain showers! I like rain showers.

What do you think of the location Myanmar friend Hsu Wai Phyo and Malaysian expatriate living in Yangon, Joachim Rajaram?

Rooms in Myanmar have been getting relatively expensive because of shortages and a surge in business visitors after Myanmar opened up. I am surprised the room is sub RM 200, given its location. Maybe there was a flash sale or promotional price at the time of booking.

We forget a similar hotel in the heart of KL city could probably cost more.

To book this hotel or to check rates at any hotel in any part of the world, go to http://www.mycen.my/agoda/

In The Midst Of Saigon’s Crazy Traffic

The best way to enjoy Saigon or Ho Chi Minh City is by motorcycle but it comes with a caveat. There were like 7.43 million motorcycles in the city in 2016. You just get pushed along helplessly in an endless sea of two wheelers.

A couple of hours ago, I had just jumped off an inter country/cross border bus from Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

It was crazy, even edging to the side of the road to do photography or to check the GPS and that can be be impossible. I had a Garmin handheld GPS but navigation was impossible and dangerous.

I wouldn’t recommend riding a bike unless you know the roads or consider yourself a very experienced rider. The only time I could take pics was when the flow stopped momentarily and I was sandwiched in the middle, like as in this pic. Don’t take selfies as I was told, as it can attract phone snatchers. It is a recent phenomenon though.

I am happy to note that motorcyclists in Saigon were mostly ethical. They always make way for a stranded pedestrian and, unlike here, there is no crazy honking or cursing when another vehicle stalls.

Eventually I gave up and parked the bike by the roadside and called the hiring company. They agreed to pick it up. I took a motorcycle taxi (Xe Om) back to the hotel. The bike hirers seemed more worried about the return of their crash helmets. Same experience I had with hirers in Pangkor Island. Haha.

If you are planning to go to Saigon, remember to book a room from my Agoda affiliate page at http://www.mycen.my/agoda/

Search for Ho Chi Minh City or HCMC or Saigon where Agoda will list over 1000 hotels in the city alone, many with low flash rates. There are also over 100 hotels listed for Pangkor, Lumut and Sitiawan..