First assignment - Similar to the world war II bunker, I spent four weeks in this small underground dungeon, shying away from any civilization that may exist outside. Luckily I didn't come back looking like a zombie.
..................................................................................................................................................................Having just finished a long marathon of university exams, the only thing that struck my mind was to quickly find a job. Any job would do as long as it doesn't require me to just sit down in front of the workstation and the only buddy you can talk to was a 386 computer. With no MP3, no CD ROM and the only games that you can play were tetris and pac man that time. If it was not the germs, the claustrophobia will kill me. The year was 1992.
When I first started my career in a local semi-government organization, little did I realize how much fun and sometimes wacky it would be. Having to work in the dark labyrinth of laboratories and handling microscopic organisms that could rot your arm with gangrenous flesh was one thing, but dealing with a bunch of weirdos in a white coat was even more nauseating for me. The rewards however, could be really a mind boggling. The sheer satisfaction was like the after feeling of eating raw wasabi.
My first assignment was the one which actually saved me from being a marauding moonlighter and a deciding factor for me to stick to my gun that this place will be my primary playing ground. Less than a month after I reported for duty, I was asked to go to Seefeld, Austria. A remote place in a foreign country that if not pronounced properly will be mistaken for a country down under. That was what happened to me. I faced several technical glitches with the ticketing department initially and even the appointed travel agent didn't quite sure where the place was.
Being for the first time abroad and alone could be a very intimidating experience. During that time, Singapore was the only country I've visited so far, that if we can consider it as a foreign land. To cut the long story short, I finally arrived at Vienna after a long hauled flight via Dubai. Still excited and intoxicated with so many glasses of orange juice to keep me awoke, I didn't really know where to start my journey really. Luckily I met this lovely young Austrian gal who was in the same flight with me and from then she was my unofficial tourist guide. But to my utterly surprise, she then told me that it will take another six-long-hours from Vienna to Seefeld by train. Nobody told me that earlier. I thought that was it. If it was not because of my eagerness and my will not to surrender to this odd circumstances I would have asked her to help me finding me a cheap hotel and retire for the day. But I didn't. I was young and full of spirit.
Since my new friend was heading to Salzburg which was in the same line, we took the train off the Westbahnhof station and headed west. Before embarking the train I bought two sandwiches since my tummy has started to alert me with that familiar tune. The last time I've had my meal was a good 6 hours ago in the flight. By then I started to miss 'nasi lemak' and 'roti canai' already. But something really troubling me and keep bugging my mind while hungrily consuming the sandwich. I guess your mind just could not think properly if you tummy was empty. Then it struck me. I just could not simply buy any food and anywhere. Not in this new territory. Oh no...! I felt like I want to vomit there and then. Having to cope up with the language was one thing, and now I got my food crisis to deal with. The word famine became so real!
We passed through the musical city of Salzburg where my unofficial guide disembarked, leaving me to spent the remaining journey wondering what to expect next. By the time the train reached its final destination Innsbruck, it was almost dark. Still I have to hop on another tram for a short commuting to my final destination Seefeld, a small village in the valley of the Tyrolean province. The next four weeks, instant noodle and load of Brahims have saved me from my insanity.
There were lessons to be learned :
- Never trust your travel agent! Find as much information as possible beforehand. Ask Uncle Goodle if you have to.
- Think first then eat, not the other way around.
- Travel alone can be very boring and loneliness kills. Make lot and lot of friends.
- If you think you can elude the tight security at the airport, bring anything that is edible.
- Seefeld is a nice place for my next honeymoon trip!
Seefeld has two mountain areas along the Alps, very famous for walking during the summer and skiing during the winter. This one is known as Roßhütte. There was a large restaurant half way up with a view of the whole village down the valley. Unprepared to this challenging activity, I borrowed a windbreaker from the host and conquered the peak with my newly bought Alain Delon, of which became the topic over dinner table during the whole course.
Prof. Sitte (the host who was sitting next to me), was really trying hard to make me felling at home. However for the first time traveler, I found it quite a daunting task in trying to explain why i still couldn't even eat a fish in a soup that was previously taken out from another meat soup which was prepared earlier (the fish was prepared specially for me).
Scientists can be very funny too. The host finally revealed the secret of preparing strawberry icecream using left over liquid nitrogen (the person next to Prof Sitte holding the liquid nitrogen tank was the one who invented this signature icecream). The taste was as good as Haagen Daaz if you ask me.
I got an opportunity to witness a traditional summer festival with colourful procession like this in the middle of the village. The folks here even though hardly conversed in English, they were very friendly. Guten morgen...Guten taag!
I got an opportunity to witness a traditional summer festival with colourful procession like this in the middle of the village. The folks here even though hardly conversed in English, they were very friendly. Guten morgen...Guten taag!
Innsbruck is only 17km away from Seefeld. The older pedestrian district of Innsbruck like this one, where Goldenes Dachl (Golden roof) a landmark to this place supposedly located. But I somehow missed the spot and wandering cluelessly in the oblivion, admiring the unfamiliar atmosphere surrounded me.
Jauh Perjalanan Luas Pemandangan..
bestnya..teja ke thailand pon xlepas lagi..ahaks...
n..travel sorg2 mmg sgt2 mmbosankan..tambah2 kalau kita xtau selok belok tmpat baru..huu..mmg mati kutu la..
Yang paling seronok dalam dunia ini adalah; "Kita suka dengan kerjaya kita!"
Tak kiralah kerjaya apa pun....
Barulah dapat bekerja dengan roh....dan pastinya berkat dari hasil kerja yang kita dapat...
Apa-apa pun, pengalaman DrSam memang menarik....tak semua orang dapat rasa...
Al-Muallim Shah @ Dino
Pengalaman dikongsi semoga ada yang mendapat munafaat dan pengajaran.
bab seronok tu memang betul. tapi bila dah berumur dan ada aja pantang larang ni, seronok berselimut kat rumah pula :)
setuju. pilihan ditangan kita (namun ada yang tidak mempunyai pilihan) untuk menjadikan kerja suatu yang menyeronokkan.
yup..u can reeeeeaaaallllyyy miss nasi lemak n roti canai when u r abroad..10 days trip 2 Japan few years back was nearly "famine" kinda trip for hubby n me..even were well equiped w supplies of Brahim's n Maggy..(hohoho..), after the 3rd day..everuything seems 2 b "eeeuwww!! gross"..we ate lots n lots of fish/sushi n eggs ..sampai muka pun da mcm telur..keh..keh..pity my hubby terpaksa cari antihystamine pills..at last we found a mamak restaurant serving briani!! apa lagi..blasah laa..fuhh..legaaa..tp nak byr time..yaiiikkss!! RM 90 per plate..huhu
Waaaahhhh bes nya Doc! I was stomping my feet in excitement whilst reading the post :P
Almaklum la, tak penah pegi tempat jaoh-jaoh sebelum nih...tu la rasa sonok sangat pulak baca pengalaman orang lain. Hehe.
heheh...:) banyak betul.... pengalaman DrSam... merantau di negeri orang... bertuahnya... :)
seronok baca pengalaman Drsam..
when i read this article, i just imagine if i travelling abroad alone, it must be lonely.....but with your experience, i want travelling too...
Mudah-mudahan pengalaman yang baik di negara orang boleh dimanfaatkan di negara kita.
i want the icecream recipe..
sy pun nak pegi jg doc!!....
Most of us will face the same problem when going abroad especially when it comes to eating. Last time we went to Japan, our staple food was Japanese rice and Unagi. No more unagi until today :)
make sure you don't break your feet while stomping on the floor :)
rezeki masing2 camtu...rezeki fahmi siapa yang tahu. Adalah tu nanti.
pengalaman untuk dikongsi bersama semoga ada yang bermunafaat.
The part that I hate most, travelling alone!
mudah-mudahan begitu. saya pun belajar dari pengalaman orang lain juga. sama-sama berkongsi pengalaman.
wah...bagus betul idea jual barang-barang terpakai dan 'unwanted item'. memang kena sokong. dulu-dulu aktif juga bergiat dalam bidang ini :)
Insyaallah jika dimurahkan rezeki.
dr sam...dpt naik gunung oversea
bila la nak merasa naik gunung kat
those were the days eh doc... :-)
baru berkesempatan membaca. :)
I wonder who is that tall, dark but not so handsome guy in the white shirt!!
He seems so 'supan and santun'
i miss those days..
rindu nak travelling so much..!!!!
gunung oversea dan gunung kat sini sama je. cuma kat sini takde ice jelah.
yes... those days were happy days.
selamat singgah. saya tahu orang disinung memang selalu sibuk.
ha..ha... sopan santun no, so blurrrr yes!
have companions will travel!
untungnye dr.sam...dpt travel uerope cm2...
sy nak gak merase pegi europe n those road trips~~huhu
ur job seems like fun;gotta travel around like that...
someday im gonna see the world dr like you do doctor
386 c0mputer?? hohh0o..
best la experience Dr,
memang mengadap pc saja tak best
need t0 do something m0re interactive n fun!!`
barula ser0nok buat keje~ hee =)
ouch! that bad doc? raw wasabi is already bad enough! :( the taste is indescribable... hot but its not like you eating chilies.
hehe why everyone who goes abroad surely the first thing they miss is roti canai?? it happen to me too...! the 2nd thing was sirap bandung haha. i managed to by something similar and it was strawberry dutch lady milk!! lol.
i used 386 before. is that the one using the big floppy and the only programming you can learn is BASIC? lol. the blue screen...!!
doc, how did you deal with the cold weather if meat was hard to chew? hehehehe... just wonder. i know you can get fish, but meat is good to warm you up during winter.
hahaha the soup previously from meat soup???? omg! what meat???
lol yeah yeah very friendly. i was in hannover to buy some postcards and when i asked the price she kept talking in deutsch even though i kept telling her "ich spreche kein deutsch!". i was like... damn it!!! anyone here can speak english??? lol. oh ya another word... ich liebe dich lol :P but they forced me to say ich liebe deutschland... cheh! :P
Thank you so much... Thank you so very much for sharing..
Somehow it made me smile.. thinking back of all the sweetest moment had years ago..
Again.. thanks.. :)
dla nak dptkan khidmat consultantlah.. tentang assignment... byk nak tahu ni.. mcm mana nak contact? can u give me ur emel add? tq so much...
dark room tu dkt RRI jalan ampang ke bro?
kantor saya di banggunan dagangan cina berkepala singa tu.. time break kadangkala ada makan dkt kantin RRI tu.. the building tu.. sometime quite horror jugak kan.. but cool laa dark room tu... hihi
I've lot of friends who are complaining not having enough time with their loved ones because they travel a lot. win some lose some. It may looks fun at first. I presume you are still young. your time will come. just be patience.
berpinar mata kalau mengadap lama sangat. kena selalu buat latihan mata :)
One thing I noticed if I spend a long time away from home, was my weight will reduce significantly. another thing was, suddenly I became a pure vegetarian. so another tip...to have an ideal BMI, spend some time far away from your home!
Ich liebe du bro!
care to share with us your experience? Bitte..
ada email kat sebelah tu.
bukan..bukan...dark room kat sg. buloh. tapi sekarang bila dah era digital ni, dark room dah tutup kedai. tapi chemical dia berlambak. sape berminat boleh ambil FOC. (miss plak bertapa dlam dark room). ofis jalan ampang tu sekarang dah jarang pergi. bangunan tu dah diwartakan sbg heritage site. bangunan tiga zaman. tapi kalau saya kesana boleh kita makan kat bangunan singa tu.
Bilalah agaknya boleh holiday ke sinuuuuuunnnn....hihihi,
I love my job too
kerja sambil holiday o.k., tapi jangan holiday sambil kerja pula :)
mana gambo yang ajar mat salleh2 tu guna kain pelikat erk?!
ingat lagi? kah..kah..kah...memang kelako. takdok modal kena buat cerita masa dinner, nasib baik ada kain pelikat tu. masa scan gambo-gambo tu boleh terlupa plak nak masukkan. tu kain arwah tokki bagi tu Cuni. hadiahkan sbg. cenderamata kat Prof tu.
fuh! teringin nak sampai mont blanc...
bila la agaknya baru dapat travel ke europe ni...
hi..salam DrSam..tq for dropped by at mine..happy anniversary to u n mrs too...muga sentiasa dalam keberkatanNya....aminnn
ada rezeki dan umur panjang, sampailah tu.
nama glamer? share le cerita pergi Jeju tu. Photographer amateur macam you mesti banyak gambar-gambar cun. sori ye, tak sempat lagi melawat ofis tempat mayat tu :) leceh betul nak parking.
saya punya belum lagi. namun terimakasih diatas ucapan tersebut.
u'r rite Dr, never trust our travel agent.. we must prepare ourself too..
thanks for sharing...
It seems that I've learned the lesson the hard way. That is the beauty of sharing.
bestnyer, apapun dr.sam bertuah coz tak semua orang dapat pengalaman idup cam gini
such a lucky person :)
Eh...is that uuuuu bro.hihi
setakat berkongsi pengalaman.
hope lady luck will look after you too.
which one...the tall one or the skinny one?
salam dr..wahhhh mesti seronok kan dapat melawat ke negara orang..heh bilalah diriku ini akan mengikut jejak langkah doc
Hi d sam, hit ur blog through sir nik's.Yeah..Austria is a nice country and known for its disciplined people.The boarder too always in tight security.I could travelled backpacking freely in western european countries but when I reached the Austrian boarder, we ( me and another friend) were ushered to a room and interogated.Maybe because I wore tudung.Luckily they didnt strip me!!!
buat ala lawatan sambil belajar bagus juga. kalau tak dapat jauh pun negara-jiran boleh juga. Nak kena buat paper-work sikit lah nih. amacam cikgu cadangan tu?
you should just say ich liebe du kat border guard tu :)
Austria is really a nice country, but to be frank, after being and traveled in a few European countries, they are too monotonous. I would now rather prefer to visit our Asian countries more. Much much more colorful and diversed in everything.
How nice..Can travel to abroad. I want to do it too
Austria : It’s known as Österreich in deutsch.But to me, the wheather was rather 'harsh'for a tiny person like me (kept having running nose).
P/S : I have a friend named Silke in Deutschland - close to Sitte (*grin*)
And, Seefeld, ahhh…heaven for skiers & skaters (not me :). I know this place have interesting trails for skiing. But then again the skiing tools even measured greater than my height, heheh..
Perhaps you were not in the ‘right’ Strasse (street) to be able to see the famous historic landmark of The Golden Roof -constructed out of gold to honour the marriage of Maximilian I(Holy Roman Emperor) & his wifee, hmmmm…reminds me of TajMahal pulak!
Talk about honeymoon, if you really love historical/cathederal landmarks plus being really isolated, try Romania :)
Salam Dr.Sam..amboi banyaknya pengalaman kat luar negara tu yea...Seefeld tu kat maner yer...saya buta geografi lar...bila lar nak amik gambar kat two mountain areas along the Alps tu....alahai entah lar...
Just like Indonesia, Malaysia is a nice place to travel too. And it is quite easy and affordable nowadays to travel between these two countries.
I was actually hoping to see you commenting in Deutsch :) Yes you are right about the 'harsh' weather, I went there on summer time but yet the weather was quite cold.
Yes, Eastern European Countries look very tempting too. But considering the traveling time I have to endure, of which I hate the most, our Far Eastern neighbors would be my choice for now. They are very colorful too.
Salam kembali. Seefeld tu sebuah perkampungan kecil aja kat Austria. masih ada lagi penduduk dia naik kereta kuda masa tu.
the real patungcendana...hehe...that's for me to know and for you to find out... :-)
by the way...you do realize that you've beem tagged, don't you?...hehehe.. :-)
aku nak komen ini jer. muka DrSam SAH-SAH muka INNOCENT aka muka baik yg amat. (innocent ker?) lalala....
wow...a mystey woman! Got tagged? Did I? Tq. will do...
malu lah nak jawab soalan tu :)
the latest entry la...tak perasan ke the last line...
aku tag semua yang aku link kan dalam blog aku...yang bukan warga atau bekas warga UMP....hehehe...yes....you.you.you.you.and you...
merantau negeri orang best.,tapi klu gi sorang2 tak boring ker?
perasan punya pasal lah tu sampai tak perasan tag tu ditujukan kepada empunya diri.
masa muda remaja peluang merantau jangan dilepaskan. sorang memang boring, tapi kalau pandai buat kawan perjalanan akan jadi lebih menarik. waktu berlalu pun tak perasan.
dr sam bile nak bwk kwn2 bloger g lawatan sambil blajo..ehehe...
Kein problem DrSam. Du spricht deutsch? :)
kena buat EGM lah macam ni. usul kena bincang dan buat perancangan.
Not that I can speak deutsch, but I just amazed to see people who can command other languages other than their mother tongue.
deutsch is one of the easiest languages to learn - close to Bahasa & also English.But if spoken, the people whom using Germanic languanges (as mother tongue) would definitely(very2 quickly :) realize that I'm not even a Caucasian, hehe. Just so you know, my deutsch isn't perfect - grammatically (I can't write a perfect article with it) or pronunciation wise.
I, on the other hand, envy people who speak Japs/Mandarin or any languages that do not use Romans alphabets.
Thus, YOU'd be the subject of my ENVY once you speak Japanese. Care to share about the progress?
Have a great day Dr...
P/S : My friends/brothers always compete with each other when we eat sushi to see who stand 'strongest' when 'consuming' wasabi - no tears allowed :)
And, I'm an addict to the 'zinggggg' feeling of wasabi mixed with the sushi sauce(right above th nostril). Shushi anytime with me & my family Dr?
I remember when listening to my seniors talking fluently in Arabic, I will listen with my mouth wide open and tried very hard to mimic their conversation later on. My Arabic has now become rusted. Language has to be spoken, otherwise it will just don't stick to your tongue anymore, I believe.
Hey...a good idea. Sushi outing with the whole family is something I am looking forward to. Will email you later on the plan. is it o.k?
You're one of the luckiest..*clear throat*...Doctor! :)
(now you have to visualize my envious expression on my face)
Arabic of all languages should be all muslims/muslimahs' (not only the Arabs) spoken/written language as it's THE LANGUAGE of the Al-Furqan.
I'm struggling to understand the meanings of beautiful surahs/hadiths though the one that I have is with translation. It's the interpretation (mine) that worries me!
Here's my email add Doc: firstname.lastname@example.org
P/S: And, I agree on languages that we have 'mastered' even mother tongue, if not spoken regularly won't be as 'sharp' as when we first acquired them :)
Hey hi,... i am Ramya from India i saw your name in one of my friend's list and i also found your blog intresting.so i have added your link to my Blog,i hope you will also add my name to urs Blog and share ur ideas and experiences with me.Bye.HAVE A GREAT DAY.
vintage pictures! nice exposure!
Dr Sam, really love reading your experiences shared here. Kaya sungguh dengan pengalaman... and couldn't wait to read for more :D
damn cool experience dr.sam!
love it!! :)
ade suspen2 sket.. huhuhu..
yg plg besh was the happy ending.. kekeke... i love stories wif a happy ending.. ahakss..
wahhh gmbo zaman dolu2..priceless! :D
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