Week 6, Semester 4: Chinese New Year!

Week 6 felt really short. It was Chinese New Year week of which I went back since the Tuesday night and only felt school work at Monday till Tuesday afternoon.

On Monday, I woke up early to return stuffs to NYH. Yeah it was the aftermath of NTUBS Anniversary. Also helped the Event Team returning stuffs to NYH Office and hence I skipped my morning lecture (CZ3001) and was late for CZ2007 lab although in the end the lab was very chill, it was just revising the E/R diagram that has been graded according to the comments given by the lab supervisor. After lunch, I attended CZ2007 lecture, and then CM8003 quiz that constitutes 20% of final grade. Although the quiz was MCQs, and I was used to do well in MCQ-style exams (like in my high school days), some of the questions were just unthinkable, like “when was French Revolution?” Luckily, I remembered that it happened after US Independence (1776) and I chose the option that stated the year which was later than 1776.  After this, I went to a meeting by CEC Code for Charity, which I was not quite sure in joining, since if the project was boring, I definitely will be a burden and not contributing. But at this stage, I should join until I received more details of the project itself. Quite risky, but may worth the wait. Finally I went to CZ3005 lecture which shows the statistics of the quiz and then recap the lectures for the first half. It ended early and I went to CNS 2015 First General Meeting which was moved to Hall 16 TV Lounge (originally Hall 13 TV Lounge, but considering the fierce security guard, we moved to another place). The meeting went fast: introduction (to the camp), introduction (to the committees), and then (steamboat) dinner. After I went back, I started to do packing up.

Tuesday was CEC Techfest. After attending CZ2006 lecture which has clicker quiz on it, we went to Nanyang Auditorium to attend CEC Techfest 2015 which I played around with the Xbox: navigates around the Xbox with Kinect and then started a game which require a controller. Imagine that you can only control it using gestures (via Kinect) and a message box says: “Press A to continue”. It was a HCI violation 😛 I immediately reset the Xbox and choose the game which can be interacted via Kinect only, which is the dancing game. Then the free ice-cream stand was ready and I was the first person to take the free ice-cream. We hung around the place (also browsed the booths) for some time: there was a booth promoting something like plan* (although it was an iOS app, which was quite good IMO). We also went to the photobooth and took a photo there (which has a failed photo inside, again). The SCE Staff award commenced and it was no surprise that the best admin staff were Mdm Norhana and Ms Jessica Chan, the academic course coordinator (very helpful during STARS Wars, to increase the vacancy of the index that we want). There was also a gift presentation to a staff that was at NTU for like 25 years already. Hmmm, it was so long already. SCE did not exist back then: SCE was just there around 10 years and before that “Computer Engineering” major was offered by School of Applied Sciences, but I also doubt the existence of this school 😛 After that, it was free lunch time, exclusive for SCE students. Well, not very nice, but it was free! Who did not like free lunch? After lunch, I joined the CEC Techfest Hackathon 2015 (which was supposed to start before lunch). The hackathon used the same OJ as last year’s one, with test cases which were not that strong although this year’s hackathon features a large input (luckily there was no timer for output upload since input download started that cause chaos during Facebook Hacker Cup 2015 Round 1). Well, there were 4 problems, of which ALL OF THEM CAN BE SOLVED BY PURE BRUTE FORCE. After AC-ed the first three, I tried to do Greedy on the 4th but got Wrong Answer verdict for some time. Hopeless, I tried the naive solution and although it ran slow, I waited for output from my own computer (which took around a minute or two, i7 power!) and submitted it. I got AC! Solving all, I ranked 4th for the Techfest event! Well, the 1st rank solved all problems like 30 minutes earlier than me. Finishing the contest, I joined some stage quiz which I received a 32GB flash disk. Well, during the contest, I noticed there were stage quiz which question was damn easy but I can’t leave my place since I was coding. Yeah, I noticed that most of the time I was concentrated to the problem and not to the noisy environment there at the stage. Finishing 4th for the hackathon earned me a legal eSet antivirus. Hmmm, not really useful.

Nevertheless, the day is not over, yet. I rushed back to my room, finalized my stuffs that I bring back hometown (including blank lecture pads) and rushed to the bus stop. There was an 179A that patiently waited for me chasing the bus with a luggage. I went to Boon Lay MRT station meeting HH and her brother, and Riko. Together, we went to Changi Airport via MRT. Most of the times, sitting and listening to music, I closed my eyes and tried to rest as I was quite exhausted for the day. Arriving at Changi, we checked in (and we’re very early) and I bought Bee Cheng Hiang bak hu for my family. In the meantime, HH & her brother had a quick dinner before we went to the waiting room. On the way there, we met Hermanto, Janet, and Kenfrand. We also met JW with her brother. The Silk Air flight was nice, although I sat at the last row, I still can adjust the seat for leaning (as opposed to my experience sitting at last row at Lion Air, if I recall correctly, I was going to Jakarta from Medan for BNPCHS). The flight also provided us with a light meal (which I needed as I did not take any bite since Techfest). Arriving at Medan, I rendezvoused with my family and my family took me home. For the real dinner, I had Kwetiau Ateng. After that, I set up my laptop for some Internet before resting for real.

The next day, I started the day having my hair cut. And then we had the reunion lunch which was not as large as it was when we had a real reunion dinner, where everyone, including my relatives, was there eating together. After the lunch, I did some blogging and the rest were nothing productive. We went to the Malibu home for the night. For dinner, we went for a dinner at Fish & Co. at Centre Point Mall. The food was quite okay, but it was a lot. I haven’t felt this full for a long time already 😛 Going back, I spent the rest of the night coding and I continued playing Simcity 2013.

Chinese New Year was here! I woke up around 9, and for breakfast we had vegetarian instant noodle with sweetened tea. It was a tradition for my family to be vegetarian on the 1st and 15th day of lunar month, including the Chinese New Year. And also normally breakfast was only served with unsweetened tea, but only on CNY that it was sweetened. We went out and visited my maternal grandparents home, Vihara Maitri, and then my Jambi home. After that, we went to Vihara Setia Budi, offering incense to all the gods (which I only recognize some) and I wondered why people offer such a lot of incense, including the big ones, to them. I observed that it was just around a minute before our incense were being turned off (by the in-charge) to make way for others to offer incense. We also went to the new temple building which was huge and there was a huge Avalokitesvara statue with lots of arms inside. We ate the huat kueh that were offered by one of the venerable there and hang around the area for a while before going to Cemara Asri, visiting our relative there. There, we chit-chatted for quite a long time before going off to Mahavihara Maitreya, a big temple around there, for having a vegetarian dinner. After the dinner, we went back to the Malibu home (which journey was a very tiring one as traffic jam were everywhere). At night, I continued playing Simcity 2013 and did some coding for CZ2006. By the way, my family did a “toast” that night: drinking together and enjoying snacks of CNY for celebrating CNY. This year, we drank apple juice (which really looks like beer in photos, trolling to the max) 😛 😛 😛 (usually some grape juice)

CNY Day 2 were mostly spent at home only. I woke up around 10 am and then did some coding on the morning, had Garuda Restaurant’s nasi padang for lunch, and then played Simcity in the afternoon. I love my city design: roads were laid out such that they formed layers of circle, and this layers of circle covered the whole city! The planning cost were quite high and it require some funding (cash gift) from other city (especially the cities where resources were myriad) to get the infrastructure laid out as quick as possible. If not, I were forced to violate the design in order to get some income. Some times have passed and I were satisfied of this big city of around 100k population. For dinner, we went to Sun Plaza to have steamboat at X.O. Suki. I then realized how different my family held steamboat compared to NTUBS events. In my family, there were only like 1 or 2 rounds of cooking and it was accompanied by rice or kwetiau (or other staple food), compared to NTUBS where normally there were quite a number of rounds of cooking and minimum staple food (may be caused by the number of people eating too). After the dinner, we went shopping for a while before going to Cambridge City Square, visiting a relative that live in the apartment above the mall. After that we watched a lion dance performance at the mall and then went back.

CNY Day 3 was spent with my friends. I woke up around 10 am (again!?) and had quick breakfast before going for a reunion with my high school friends. Before going there, I and my family visited Vihara Borobudur for paying respect to my grandfather. There we also met Bhante Jinadhammo and saw an exhibition on the new building about life of Bhikkhu Ashin Jinnarakkhita, the person who revived Buddhism in Indonesia. After that, we went to Centre Point Mall and I met my friends (Lenny, JL + her sister) at Bel Mondo cafe. Eventually, Roselyn and Vicky came and we had Skype video call with Leonard who was in Tokyo, Japan. We chit-chatted for quite long (the video call duration was shown to be 1 hour) and then moved to another restaurant (Paradise Dynasty) for the 2nd round; and finally to Blackball for the dessert (after searched for a number of cafe but they were full). After that, I reunited with my family and we went back home and had Garuda’s nasi padang for dinner. At night, I played Simcity and did some coding before going to sleep.

CNY Day 4, a.k.a. last day at Medan: started with me waking up around 10 again (cause there’s nothing productive to do if I woke up at 8). Then we went to Sun Plaza for lunch at Marugame Udon + Tempura. We ordered a family size plain udon and lots of tempura. Well, it was plain udon (and luckily not soba, which tastes bad, really bad, during my trip with friends to Sushi Tei). Overall, it was quite nice considering that we ate with the sides (yeah, purely plain udon tastes no good at all). After that we browsed around the mall, visited Gramedia (well I haven’t been here for long time already, and the newest edition of Conan is now at volume 81; and my latest collection was 75, which means like around a year already haven’t bought new Conan comic [assuming bimonthly publication]) Yeah, I got bored with Conan. It was around last year that DCTP shut down scanlation services (after its fansub services being shut down years ago) that makes me hard to catch up with the series (since there were quite a long gap between the files, which makes me needing to refer to previous file before really starting reading). Lately, I’ve been catching up again. This time the people posted the scanlation in reddit (and it was blocked in Indonesia, for the same reason imgur and vimeo were blocked). Hopefully, the scanlations can be still continued (since official translations were slow and can only be accessed in hard-copy). Where was I? Oh yeah, after we left Gramedia, we went to the Coffee Crowd to take a rest, having a drink, then went home. For the dinner, we brought along my grandmother to an eating house “Pecel Lele Mbak Bolek” for a dinner together. It was nice 🙂 I ate a lot of seafood: fish, shrimps, squids. After that, we went back home and I started to pack up and ended the day playing Simcity 2013.

This week and CNY holiday trip resulted in missing of 3 tutorial sessions (1 because of Techfest) + 1 lab session (which I will try to do make-up lab, cause this lab constitutes 10% of final grade); and lots of lecture recording backlog. (as 24 Feb, there were 15 hrs worth of lecture recording to watch) Oh no, “The Snowball Effect” started to hurt.

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