First Diving Experience   2 comments

Scuba diving has always been an item high on my bucket list. Horror movies like Jaws and Deep Blue Sea made me want to try it more. It’s scary and exciting at the same time. So when I found out that there was a dive center at the resort we were staying, I jumped with joy. Yey! Finally I was going to experience this super cool activity. We made bookings and tried on the wetsuits and flippers for the next day’s dive.

On the morning of the dive, I woke up with full confidence and ready to jump off a boat into the sea. After loading all the scuba equipment, we set off to our first dive location Gamul Kebir (12 meter deep), a beautiful reef in the Red Sea. While on our journey there, our diving instructor taught us the basics of scuba diving and how to set up the scuba gears. He also taught us how to communicate underwater, all the sign language of diving , and also the things we need to do when we are faced with a problem. For example, what to do when there’s pressure built up in our ears or what if water leaks into the goggles or if we have water in our mouth etc etc. He taught us a lot and that is the knowledge that I will remember until my next dive.

Reaching the dive site, I started feeling very scared. We were in the middle of the sea, I couldn’t see the shore anywhere near. All I can see was a vast open sea. And thinking that I would be going underwater anytime soon made me feel like I want to vomit. I can swim pretty well I should say, but it’s not about swimming. It’s the thought of not being able to breath if something were to happen underwater was very scary. I jumped off the boat first followed by my girlfriend, who was also feeling pretty scared, but I think not as sacred as I was. The instructor brought us the the side of the boat to let us test breathe through the regulator. We did not submerge very deep at first because he wanted to let us get the feeling. And after a few minutes we resurfaced. I have never felt that scared in my entire life. I have jumped off a plane before, and I was completely fine. The instructor asked me if I was okay, and I shook my head. I was scared to death!!!! I bet he could see the fear in my eyes through my goggles! I was ready to give up and go back to shore. But he held my shoulders, told me to trust him and it’s gonna be alright and promised that he would not let go of my hands. So I decided to trust him. And we went down to the bottom.

The view of the reef from the boat was breathtaking. The view underwater was even more beautiful. It’s something that I could not describe. But I was still a bit scared at the time, so I didn’t really enjoy the experience at first. There were times that I panicked all of a sudden. My breathing was very rapid, water starts to leak into my goggles every single time pinch my nose and blow to equilibrise the pressure in my ear, and my goggles started to fog……… Fuhhhh~~ So the instructor told me to relax. And I did just that. Everything was fine once I relax. He was right. Whatever it is, DO NOT PANIC and KEEP BREATHING.

After lunch we set off to our second dive site, Tobia Kebir which was a little bit deeper than Gamul Kebir. During this second dive, I was completely fine and I enjoyed the dive a lot. Because I did not concentrate on my fears, I managed to see the beauty of the reef and all the creatures that live in it. And the whole time I was underwater, one thing was on my mind : Allah made this world so beautiful. We should treasure and protect this beauty.

Scuba diving is a new passion that I feel like I want to continue doing. I hope to get my open water diving license soon so I can dive anywhere in the world. Thanks to the great dive instructors of http://3lementz.netdesign.de/ for making my first diving experience something to remember.

P1070755Loading equipments into the boat. We did not do the loading and heavy lifting, the guys from diving center did. The weight of all those scuba gears is not joke.

Gamul-Kebir

Gamul Kebir

Gamul Kebir

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Gamul KebirView from second level deck

Red Sea in wetsuitTitanic much? hahahaha…

P1070794Getting excited!

Tobia-Kebir

Tobia Kebir

Red SeaOn our way back to shore.

DSC_0924On our last day at the resort we stopped by at the dive center to say our goodbyes to the awesome dive masters. They have been really great to us.

*Note : Photos are from Panasonic Lumix G3, courtesy of Ann. I only edited the photos (with permission of course). I did not bring my Nikon along that day. Too bad.

Break of Dawn Over the Red Sea   Leave a comment

Red Sea Sunrise 2

We woke up at 5.30am to catch the sunrise. Miss the dawn because it was difficult to pull ourselves outta bed. But the daybreak was spectacular. The sea was calm with very little wave. It was one of the most amazing feeling watching the sun rises from the horizon.

Red Sea Sunrise

Red Sea Sunrise 4Just look at the vibrant colors.
Okay, this might be a little bit too much of editing, but it’s my photo and I’ll edit it the way I like it.

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Red Sea Sunrise 3

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Soma Bay, Egypt : 7 Days in Sunny Paradise   Leave a comment

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A girlfriend and I went on a short holiday in sunny Hurghada. It was sort of a last minute plan for me. I thought of just staying in Moscow for the whole winter break. But the gloominess and depressing-ness of Moscow made me change my mind. And plus, I was bored. A week into my winter break I was already dead bored.

We arrived at Hurghada in the evening and was surprised by the warmness of Hurghada’s weather even after sundown. Coming from a -20°C region to 18°C felt pretty awesome. The weather was just nice; not too hot, not too cold. We even overheard a Russian tourist saying “Ой такая тепло!”

The temperature during the day was about 22-25°C, an awesome temperature to go swimming in the Red Sea. Of course the water’s temperature is lower but it was rather refreshing having a dip in the cool sea water. But I have to say, Red Sea taste awfully salty. Red Sea is known for being one of the saltiest bodies of water on Earth and it does not taste good. Though that did not stop us from snorkeling and swimming in the sea. Who cares about the big swimming pools that the resort has when you have the whole sea to swim in eh?

I shall not say anything more, feast your eyes on these splendid views of the Red Sea

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The water is crystal clear. From the jetty, we could see corals and all the fishes swimming down below so clearly. Snorkeling in Red Sea was exceptional.
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Fishes floating aroundI don’t know what these fishes are called, but they were floating around gently along with the tide. The weren’t swimming at all, so lets call them lazy fish. hahahaha

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Soma Bay, Red Sea, Egypt 7The beach on low tide

On the 5th day at the resort, we went to the beach again. It was cloudy and there was no wind. Thus, the sea was very very calm. I’ve never seen a sea without any waves before. The view of the corals and fishes on this day was awesome.

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Soma Bay, Red Sea, Egypt 4

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Look at what we found! Don’t worry, we put it back in the sea after taking pictures. It was unharmed.
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DSC_0878With Khalid. He was the awesome lifeguard that showed us around in the water. At first we didn’t know what to look at while snorkeling, but he showed us so many things. And he let us touch all sort of sea creatures. I like touching the sea cucumber the most… so soft and squishy. Of course we were VERY careful not to hurt any thing.

Soma Bay, Red Sea, Egypt 6

What do we do during break hours?   Leave a comment

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Prof gave us break. Nothing else to do, the cafe is too far away. So now watching heart bypass surgery next door. It’s really cool watching how the doctors make the heart start to pump again. And honestly, the heart looks really cute pumping within the chest cavity.

Posted September 27, 2012 by Amy Fareena Wee in Uncategorized

Garden Goodness   2 comments

Roselle

Roselle fruit is best be made into infusion and consume as a beverage. My whole family loves roselle drink. My dad planted three roselle plants in our garden quite sometime ago and it never stop producing fruits.

Roselle has a high content of vitamin C. There are other benefits as well, but I’m just too lazy to read up about them. But isn’t high vitamin C content enough reason to drink it?

Looks like hibiscus? That’s because it IS a species of Hibiscus, an edible one.

To make infusion from the fruit is very easy :

1. Wash and peel the calyx to remove the seed inside.
2. Boil calyx in water for 10-15 minutes.
3. Add sugar. I usually add 5 tablespoon of sugar. Roselles are really sour. I’ve tried eating the fresh calyx, very sour! Of course the sweetness depends on individual preference.
4. Let the infusion cool before pouring into a bottle for keeping.

The infusion is quite thick. To make a roselle drink, just dilute it with water and add ice. ohhhhh it taste really GOOD!

Posted September 1, 2012 by Amy Fareena Wee in Food, Health

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‘Let’s-Get-Fat’ snack   Leave a comment


It’s 2AM and I felt like eating ramyeon. But my laziness to enter the kitchen is stronger than my desire, so I’m settling for a few pieces bowl of cookies and a bottle of vitagen. ahhhhhhh…. I’m turning into a hippo!!!!!

Posted August 31, 2012 by Amy Fareena Wee in Food, Life

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Hwaseong Fortress, Suwon   Leave a comment

The walls of Hwaseong surrounds the center of Suwon was built in the later part of Joseon Dynasty (18th century) under the rule of King Jeongjo. This structure was built to honor and protect the grave of King Jeongjo’s father, Crown Prince Sado.

I will not talk much about the history of Hwaseong because I know nothing about it. I didn’t managed to get back to Suwon in time for the Hwaseong Train(tour) that takes passengers through out the fortress and even up to Paldalsan (Mountain).

The city bus ride from the Korean Folk Village took 45 minutes and then another 5 minutes walk from the intersection. But I wasted 15 minutes because I got lost, had to stop and ask for directions several time *sigh*. When I finally reached the Hwaseong Tourist Centre, it was a little pass 4pm and they were about to close 😦 I was left speechless because the information on the official site of Korea Tourism Information stated that Hwaseong Tourism Centre opens until 6pm during summer. I was left disappointed, tired, and hungry. Looking at my disappointed face, the worker at the tourist centre told me that I could still see certain parts the fortress on foot or by city buses. The only parts I would not be able to reach on my own was the forts on Mt.Paldalsan. The problem was, the worker did not tell me which buses I could take. Again I felt kinda lost. After much thought and some hawker snacks, I decided to hop on any bus that was heading towards Suwon Station. And if that bus passes by any part of the fortress, I would just get down there. If it didn’t, then too bad.

My luck was still good because the bus that I took brought me to Janganmun (North Gate).
Janganmun is the main gate and the largest out of the four gates that make up the fortress.
Ongseong, a semicircle shaped fort outside this gate served as a defense. Ongseong literally means ‘jar fortress’

The gate

Along the Ongseong

North-west Turret with a cannon

North Sentry Post (북포루/Buk Poru)

Residential area with the North-west Sentry Post (북서포루 Bukseo Poru) in view

Hwaseong joggers. There were so many people jogging, brisk walking, walking their dogs along the fortress. How nice would it be to be able to jog or walk everyday along a beautiful fortress.

Posted August 29, 2012 by Amy Fareena Wee in Korean, Photographie Newbie, Travel