HB2 Orchard Trip, Day 1

On 17th November 2009, a bunch of happy people from Taylor’s College Sri Hartamas set off to an orchard at Batu Arang.

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Around 11 o’clock, we arrived together at our college. My luggage was one one the heaviest as I brought my fishing rod, camera bag, tripod, and a big bagpack. Chin Ken brought his rod too, but his is foldable. While waiting for our friend, we sat at the students’ corner and chit-chatted. After some time, Hooi Sann arrived with her trademark blur look.

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Without much delay we drove to meet Vincent, our big brother at Selayang. He just got his approval from his parents an hour before we met him, and he has got a lot of things to carry. Bed sheet, pillow, bag, Chinese chess, Monopoly.. and many others. So now all 10 of us were present. Me, Chin Ken, Poh Seng, Shook Teng, Yee Jean, Carol, Camelia, Hooi Sann, Vincent, and Tjia Hwei. The fun begins.

Firstly we went to a small restaurant nearby to have our lunch. I had skipped my breakfast before that and were in great hunger.

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After eating, we begun our journey to Carol’s uncle’s orchard. I sat in Vincent’s car along with Jean so that Poh Seng and Ah Bao can have their own world in their car. Hooi Sann and Camelia joined Carol’s car. Since Tjia Hwei is not driving (his car was trashed), he had to join Chin Ken.

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It’s the polarizer + UV shield effect.

With Carol leading us, we 4 cars drove across highways and low-ways and found our way. In the car, we 3 were discussing about blue topics and Jean was pleasantly surprised about the “informative” inputs she received from us. We drove into tangling roads and crossed some hills, and after some time we finally arrived at the orchard.

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We were warmly welcomed by Carol’s uncle Mr. Liew, the owner of the orchard. The place was better than I’d expected: there is a single story building (the place for fruit-packaging) which somehow has a resort-like feel. Just beside the building there are 2 huts which is a place for us to barbeque. There are many star-fruit trees and 3 fish ponds. We were invited to fish at the third pond.

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Cam, Hooi Sann and Poh Seng.

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After putting our luggage we went for fishing. The water was greenish and there were many fishes. We promptly set up our rods and used the bait (just fish foods, not really effective) to lure fishes to near us.

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Chin Ken then lowered the bait into the water. After mere minutes, he sensed something pulling his rod: the string was moving around, so he pulled up his rod and wow, it’s a fish, a greedy fish!

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After that catch, we all used the same technique and tried to catch some fishes. But luck wasn’t on our side. We waited for long but no fish were caught. The sun was hot, but we still waited. Fishing is a game of patience. We must wait.

After a while, Mr. Liew came to enquire about us. He brought his rod and hooks and taught us how to fish. He took the hook which I borrowed from Chin Ken and said: “Woah, this hook is for sea fishes- just look at its size. The fishes here would be scared just by seeing the hook.” He changed a smaller hook for me, and put some real bait on it- earthworms. By this time Chin Ken already caught his second fish, using the smaller hook and the real bait. I quickly put the bait into the water and waited.

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With the faux bait we waited for long with no avail; but with this real bait, things were really easy. Fishes caught on hook very fast, and almost everyone caught fishes. We released some, but kept some to be eaten at night. Mr. Liew also taught Vincent how to catch earthworms in lump soils, and more importantly, how to differentiate between earthworms and small centipedes.

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Now, equipped with more baits, we caught more fishes. There was a time when the earthworm on my hook was too small, and no fish was caught. Chin Ken helped me to put on another earthworm on it, and there were two earthworms on my bait. I lowered down the hook into the water and waited.

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After some time, my string suddenly moved violently. I was excited, and quickly pulled the fish out. Wow, it’s a catfish, my favourite. The catfish was the greediest fish we’ve encountered. The earthworms, along with the bait, went into its stomach and the hook was stuck in there. We tried to take the hook out but failed. The catfish was still very active and were moving around.

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Without other options, we seeked the help of the workers in the building (they were packing fruits). He said that the hook was very deep inside the fish, and the only way to take it out is to... tear open its gill. We were all stunned when he tore open the fish’s gill. Damn, I feel guilty.

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But nevertheless I continued fishing. It was so fun. There were a few times when the fish was caught on the hook and escaped. Poh Seng and Ah Bao kept on catching fishes. They really have good luck.

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Once, the super big sized Tjia Hwei caught a fish. When he pulled up the rod, it was a darn small fish, which is even smaller than my palm. Their relationship is inversely proportional. On another occasion, Chin Ken felt his rod being pulled. He quickly pulled his rod and- its a tree branch, not a fish. In the end Chin Ken caught 4 fishes. I ‘caught’ 4, but 2 of them escaped, and one released.

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Around 6:30 p.m the rain started to fall. After the last catch by Jean we went into the open-air building and had some rest. We prepared ourselves while I did some long exposure and panorama shots. I also played Chinese chess with Vincent.

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Orchard Panorama-1 (Custom)

(click the panorama for larger picture)

After a while, things were set up and we were ready for our barbeque dinner. We ate meatballs, sausages and squids. Our catches were seasoned and packed inside aluminium foils, barbeque-ready. Damn, the fish are nice! Scrumptious. While eating I made some more long exposures. The results aren’t that good, well.

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It was only 9 p.m when we finished eating and cleaned up our stuffs. We went inside and bathed one by one. The water was so effing cold. It is as if the water went pass some ice-filled cooler or something. Jean said that she waited for long before she dared to step into the ice-cold water, haha. It was pitch-black outside and we were playing cards (gambling) and relaxing.

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Chin Ken forgotten to bring his toothbrush. “Those that can share I bring, but those that cannot share I didn’t bring. Wth” (he brought his shampoo). Around 10 p.m we all went out to a nearby shop to buy stuffs. Chin Ken bought a damn nice toothbrush (more on that on next post [day]) and we bought some junk foods. The 0.1 tonne Tj sat on Poh Seng’s car (due to his pussiness) and made his car severely under-powered. Something happened. Luckily we went back safely.

The sky was filled with clouds all night long (too bad) and I can’t shoot the Leonid meteor shower. Quite disappointing, really. I went to search for ideal place for light-painting but dared not going too far away from the house. At last I chose this place for light painting:

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Jean and Cam came along to join the fun,

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and here are the results:

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First try.

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Collage Jean Jean (Small)

Mine and Jean’s.

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Absentees (except our most famous prom king Wei Han).

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Jean by Jean.

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Cam by Cam.

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Kung Fu.

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After all the fun, some of them went to sleep and me, Vincent, Poh Seng, Chin Ken and Tj gambled until 4 a.m. My net profit: –1 buck. I slept at a chair which can be flattened for a more comfortable sleeping position. Not very comfortable after all, as I’ll explain on the next post.

Continue to day 2.

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