Traveling Pod: Episode 011 – Malaysia for the First Travel of 2019!

YES! Omg, this year is going to feature some super interesting travels, but none are better than kicking off the inaugural flight to one of my favorite places in the world — MALAYSIA!

YES! Omg, this year is going to feature some super interesting travels, but none are better than kicking off the inaugural flight to one of my favorite places in the world — MALAYSIA!

Yes, Spartan Super…..really not looking forward to it (this will be my first and last of the year), but it has to be done and i have to test my body and see if it has progressed since last November (absolute sure).

Nonetheless, this is kicking off with some sneak peeks.

Klook.com has helped me significantly. I’ve already bought my KLIA eskpress train ticket (QR code rather than going to the counter) and it’s on my phone. The SIM card is ready to go, too. So right when I land and stand in that 45-minute line, I can send messages and communicate with the world. It’s pure BRILLIANCE!

Amari Don Meung

What a smooth ride all the way over. Going to this side of town gives me nervous jitters because it was a place that I used to live for 3.5 years. I can’t say they were bad years, but more character building years. The last time I had flown out of this airport had to be July of last year, so to see the surrounding facilities and the massive skytrain develop the way it has…is pretty amazing.

When I arrived at the hotel, I had to walk through the restaurant, which was serving some DAMN “smelling-good” type food. I went down an escalator and arrived at check-in. For the first time in years, I was greeted with a smile and check-in was smoother-than-ever.

HOWEVER!

There was a bit of an issue. A guy smiled at me….well, I thought he did. I looked over my right shoulder and didn’t see anyone.

He did it a second time before coming over from where he was sitting….to sitting directly behind me at the check-in counter. This was reminisce of the mayhem I went through when I first visited Bangkok.

Some of you are asking yourselves “who was he? Who are these people?” Well, let’s just say these are sex solicitors. How do hotels allow these types of monsters to operate ON PROPERTY, is beyond comprehension. They try selling dumb ass services such as suits, sex massage, and other repugnant things. Luckily, I knew exactly what he was going to ask me. So while the lady was checking me in, I was like “speak Thai to him….he’ll go away in an instant.” These types of people target non-Thai speaking foreigners/solo travelers (especially men because they know the men want to experience a lot of exotic things). I, on the other hand, was too difficult to solicit because I knew his malicious game. He tried giving me a high-five at the end and I kinda blew him off (didn’t want to be that much of an asshole….but it happened). It was a quick exchange, he knew I was a teacher, and once I told him “yes,” he shifted his body language and turned away because he knew I wasn’t falling for his scam. BOOM!

The room was very quaint. It had a like a 90’s retro feel to it. Spacious, comfortable seating, and a dated alarm clock (which I actually liked). I didn’t go swimming or anything, but it was somewhat quiet. And although the price may seem a bit steep for a lot of travelers (about 90$ a night), you can also stay at other hotels in the area but you have to walk through sweltering traffic to get there and it’s not connected to the airport.

Upon check-out, I literally woke up, walked downstairs, got my deposit, and walked across an air-conditioned pedestrian bridge to the airport, and took an elevator one floor up to get to the departure lounge. Honestly, other than Changi Airport, tell me a more convenient way? Transit hotels are popular only at Changi airport….or else you would have to pay a lot of money to stay at big-name hotel chains.

Rating – 9.0 out of 10

Yes, Spartan Super…..really not looking forward to it (this will be my first and last of the year), but it has to be done and i have to test my body and see if it has progressed since last November (absolute sure).

Nonetheless, this is kicking off with some sneak peeks.

Klook.com has helped me significantly. I’ve already bought my KLIA eskpress train ticket (QR code rather than going to the counter) and it’s on my phone. The SIM card is ready to go, too. So right when I land and stand in that 45-minute line, I can send messages and communicate with the world. It’s pure BRILLIANCE!

Amari Don Meung

What a smooth ride all the way over. Going to this side of town gives me nervous jitters because it was a place that I used to live for 3.5 years. I can’t say they were bad years, but more character building years. The last time I had flown out of this airport had to be July of last year, so to see the surrounding facilities and the massive skytrain develop the way it has…is pretty amazing.

When I arrived at the hotel, I had to walk through the restaurant, which was serving some DAMN “smelling-good” type food. I went down an escalator and arrived at check-in. For the first time in years, I was greeted with a smile and check-in was smoother-than-ever.

HOWEVER!

There was a bit of an issue. A guy smiled at me….well, I thought he did. I looked over my right shoulder and didn’t see anyone.

He did it a second time before coming over from where he was sitting….to sitting directly behind me at the check-in counter. This was reminisce of the mayhem I went through when I first visited Bangkok.

Some of you are asking yourselves “who was he? Who are these people?” Well, let’s just say these are sex solicitors. How do hotels allow these types of monsters to operate ON PROPERTY, is beyond comprehension. They try selling dumb ass services such as suits, sex massage, and other repugnant things. Luckily, I knew exactly what he was going to ask me. So while the lady was checking me in, I was like “speak Thai to him….he’ll go away in an instant.” These types of people target non-Thai speaking foreigners/solo travelers (especially men because they know the men want to experience a lot of exotic things). I, on the other hand, was too difficult to solicit because I knew his malicious game. He tried giving me a high-five at the end and I kinda blew him off (didn’t want to be that much of an asshole….but it happened). It was a quick exchange, he knew I was a teacher, and once I told him “yes,” he shifted his body language and turned away because he knew I wasn’t falling for his scam. BOOM!

The room was very quaint. It had a like a 90’s retro feel to it. Spacious, comfortable seating, and a dated alarm clock (which I actually liked). I didn’t go swimming or anything, but it was somewhat quiet. And although the price may seem a bit steep for a lot of travelers (about 90$ a night), you can also stay at other hotels in the area but you have to walk through sweltering traffic to get there and it’s not connected to the airport.

Upon check-out, I literally woke up, walked downstairs, got my deposit, and walked across an air-conditioned pedestrian bridge to the airport, and took an elevator one floor up to get to the departure lounge. Honestly, other than Changi Airport, tell me a more convenient way? Transit hotels are popular only at Changi airport….or else you would have to pay a lot of money to stay at big-name hotel chains.

Rating – 9.0 out of 10

Listen to “Traveling Podcast: Episode 011 – Malaysia, Don Meung, Renaissance – GLORY!” on Spreaker.

Interviewee #026 – Moustafa Sano – The Marathon Man!

I brought Moustafo on a long time ago, and here I am bringing him on again because there was a particular pain threshold he passed that I’m very captivated by.  Being able to overcome the amount of pain, a rain storm, fatigue and other things is just AMAZING. Reminds me of David Goggins, so here is my Malaysian fitness entrepreneur again!

Get in touch with Moustafa Sano

Links:

Things we discussed:

Dieting before the race.

How much sleep before the marathon.

The entire experience of the marathon itself.

Body usage.

The moment you want to give up is the 40% threshold.

Individuals hitting that threshold, ultimately giving up during the race.

Eating and recharging after the marathon.

Pain thresholds.

Listen to “Interviewee #026 – Moustafa Sano – The Marathon Man!” on Spreaker.

Thank you for listening!

Links:

  1. Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/thearseniobuckshow/
  2. Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thearseniobuckshow/?hl=en
  3. YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCIzp4EdbJVMhhSnq_0u4ntA
  4. Podcasts: https://www.spreaker.com/user/thearseniobuckshow, https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-arsenio-buck-show/id1181794790?mt=2, https://open.spotify.com/show/0x39CEN5tHvfRtfZaAMTgQ?si=8cpdu1rTTjKHogufXh91Cw
  5. Website: https://thearseniobuckshow.com/
  6. Twitter: https://twitter.com/arseniobuckshow?lang=en

Interviewee #15 – Moustafa Sano On Fitness, Learning Five Languages, & Fitting In

It was an afternoon when I received a few video messages in my Instagram inbox.  Here was a guy that I’ve never met before sending me videos.  I was a bit adamant in terms of opening those videos, but I’m glad I did because it ended up  being one of the most inspirational guys ever!

 

Get in touch with Moustafa Sano of Malaysia

– About fitting in, learning 5 languages and fitness.

 

Links:

 

Things we discussed:

  • Rite of passage in our pre – teen years.
  • Different cultures, values and morals.
  • Understanding of other cultures are important.
  • People’s stories because people deserve to be listened to.
  • Different cultures have different ways of communication.
  • Pain turned to sports without realising it was self – expression to pain.
  • Self – image is important.
  • Need to have an empathy.
  • Fitness is important.
  • Don’t keep your pain inside you.
  • Pain is another key to success.
  • Racial tension or racism in Malaysia.
  • Learning Malay language (Bahasa) through playing football within his neighbourhood.
  • Languages are a way to bridge the gap between foreigners and locals.
  • Talking about personal development on “empathy”.
  • Benefits of reading – how you contextualise?
  • Personal development books that change your life and skills.
  • Pain is a good form of motivation.
  • Being proactive vs reactive.
  • Motivation comes from your morals and values and live life through your imagination.
  • The best way to learn a languages is by getting yourself outside — not by writing.
  • Learn about people’s languages.
  • Watching movies and listening to podcasts.
  • Learning different cultural – expressions through watching movies.
  • Talking about paradigm shifting of habits to growth.
  • Read more, talk more and train or challenge your brain to keep yourself fit in terms of spirituality.
  • The power of giving.
  • Believe in your words.
  • Life filled with fulfilment when you give people more.
  • The impact that you try to give to this world and the people.
  • The purpose of suffering and pain.

 

Thank you for listening!

 

Thank you so much for joining me for this podcast. Please do write down some feedbacks and comments. Please do share this podcast to your social media.

 

Links:

 

Podcast

Traveling Pod: Episode 6 – From Hell To Heaven!

Double check-ins, as mentioned before (at Don Meung International in Bangkok, Thailand), had some stereotypical treatment to them.  Yeah, already mentioned.  Then there was the delay turned almost mid-air collision with not one, but two other aircrafts.  I saw it with my own eyes.  We were ascending and we flew directly under a Singapore Airlines jumbo with another private passerby zooming the opposite direction, coming maybe 2km from both planes.  I’ve never seen anything like it.  Such a vast sky but Air Traffic Control failed miserably at this.  Terrifying experience and none of the passengers knew what was happening.

Anywho, landed and immigration presented me with a 45-minute wait, pushing back an anticipated meeting with my content writer.  After the nice officer cleared me, I ran to the Express train that connects the airports with the city center.  After that, I went to 7-11 (due to starvation) before making a six-station trek to my hotel which I was abruptly greeted by loud ass music at the base of a 100$ USD a night hotel?! Checked in, and of course, card was denied.  I said, “man, this is going to get worse.”  During the “denial” process, my content writer called and said she couldn’t wait for me any longer.  Great!

In the end, it was approached, finally, and I went upstairs, sleepily, not wanting to go anywhere and that was day 1.  Definitely one of the worst travel days in history, but then, I knew what was going to follow.

Just one more snippet, and then heaven.

After waking up and feeling like complete ass, I knew I needed to head to the train station to meet my friend, Hakeem Khan, who’s a fitness entrepreneur in Kuala Lumpur.  I didn’t forget, but I failed to go out and get a sim card in the night, resulting in me waiting and using wifi at the Sentral Station.  I plead to Hakeem and told him, “meet me there at 10:45!” So then there it went…I got to the station about 45 minutes later and he wasn’t there.  I was scratching my head, and then put a stop-loss on worry: “he has 10 minutes or I’m going back home.” I gave him five…I bought a ticket and went to the opposite side of the tracks, waiting patiently with my palm on my forehead, for the train.

I glanced over the railway for some odd reason and I saw someone waving their helmet.  IT WAS HIM! I began to fun up the stairs, and at the same time, I was telling myself, “ummm, what excuse can I come up with at that moment to tell him what I was doing.”  We laughed it off in the end, and then heaven broke through.

Heaven, come to me, baby!

I took a taxi to his gym, and boy, was I blown away! A 22-year-old with a gym like that? Loads of equipment inside, nice set up, a place where he does all of his videos, and in a nice, university section of Sham Alah.

I was on 4 hours of sleep from the night before, basically because a terrible hotel, but that didn’t stop him from getting the best out of me or me getting the best out of him.  The podcast was sensational, followed by Nandos (Portuguese chicken restaurant) and lots of funny stories.  After that was all done, I went back to my hotel in the evening and was greeted with some extraordinary news.

What I’ve been envisioning is teaching at a bank Mon-Fri in the morning.  I got a message with the other person stating they have another project from the same bank they want to give me.

I’m just so grateful for everything. I find myself in gratitude a heck of a lot more than before because everything I’ve been through was because of this moment.  This moment right here.

And so, here I am at the airport getting ready to take a flight back to Thailand….and I’ll be back in 17 days, too.

Stay tuned!

Ramble of Positivity: Episode XXVI – Number Four + A Resounding Offer

Here I am in the middle of the check-in line, grateful as hell (although the following events will lead to a different podcast on self-control) because this is a record forth country this year alone.  Not only that, but an offer — here’s the story.

Back in 2016, I taught at a company in an industrial estate just north of where my previous job is.  This company got in contact with my company and decided to sign a deal whereas they would send teachers there to teach.   Let me give you a rundown of what my company (and others) do.

When marketing directors advertise a company to another company to promote their brand of learning English, they normally state a massive initial number in terms of the total course cost.  Hardly ever does it stay that number, but the number still remained quite steep.

Some of the companies would be massive Japanese teach companies like Toshiba, and even Austrian companies like Swarovski.  Anywho, The teach gets paid only a fraction of the total cost.

Let’s put it this way.  I got paid 22$ an hour to teach at a Japanese tech company, but the company profited somewhere between 100-300$ per hour.  This is one of the biggest problems because teachers are taken advantage of, but how can a teacher market himself? Let’s go deeper.

An ex student of mine contacted me via Facebook messenger and said, “excuse me, teacher.  How much would it cost ____________ to pay you to come back and teach here?”

Let me put this at a macro scale.

They didn’t call my old place of work back; or maybe they did and realized that I no longer worked there (a really high chance). Therefore, one of the students got into direct contact with me and asked me for my services.

Do you understand how powerful that is? I just took down a 9-year-old language center because of maybe my online persona, charisma, or maybe because I’m just a devoted individual when it comes to teaching and inspiring?

When I got that message, my jaw-dropped.  They didn’t call them; they called ME! They want MY services and they’re willing to pay me in FULL for the work I do.

See, guys, when you get to a stage in your life when you’re building such an incredible online persona, people will start getting in contact with YOU.  Remember, a headhunter recently contacted me that’s stationed outside Santiago, Chile.  I received another email from another guy about 12 hours later, and in the previous two months, and Indian tech company based in Delhi wanted me to teach there team in Bangkok.

It’s patience, people.  I was just in a state of oblivion and despair the first three months of this year because I was trying to break the chains of an old job while trying to search for new ones.  I was turned down by 6 different solo-job-applicants because the color of my skin; and another company disregarded all my emails after sending me six potential job suitors.

Create YOUR BRAND! Create YOUR PRICE! And NEVER give up when times get tough…because the breakthrough is on the verge!

Emergency Vacation: Singapore!

Yes, you read it right! Because of ridiculous rules at immigration and me just simply not wanting to inject anymore of my hard-earned money into this economy, I decided to take (literally) a one-day trip to Singapore.

As you probably already know, I’ve had several layovers in Singapore because I had to switch to a bigger plane before heading to LAX via Narita Airport in Japan.  What I loved so much about Singapore was the service, transit hotel, and being able to take a shower for $9 USD.

Well, this is finally the time I’m going to step outside the airport and see what the rest of the country has to offer.  With a hotel stationed just right outside a line that heads directly into the airport, and with one of my favorite people in the world (student who studies at MDIS in Singapore) waiting for me there with maybe a couple other friends, this will make for an interestingly short trip.  I booked a hotel I might not be at for long.  I might go sightseeing and head to Sentosa Island, but there are a variety of different things that will be coming up.

https://www.spreaker.com/user/thearseniobuckshow/emergency-vacation-singapore

Ramble of Positivity: 5th Anniversary In Thailand

It’s been an unbelievable 5 years.  Wow, how can I even put it into context. I will try highlighting this through pictures.

First Three Years

download.jpgimages.jpg

screen_shot_2556-05-03_at_5.41.31_pm.jpg

download-1.jpg

You understand where my focus was, right? 2013-2015 were the rough years with lots of racial influences, advertisements, and me focusing on “what I didn’t want.” I had a woman from Thai Airways threaten my life, stating that she would get dangerous people to kick my face in.  I got the “ewww black man! Low-class! Pimp!” comments from lots of women.  I was denied jobs for being black.  My language center (New Education World if you must know the name) denied me dozens of jobs stating, “ohhh, they want a white teacher.”  All of these culminated for three years (and even well into this year after cutting off the unknowledgeable job)…..until the beginning of 2016.

Then this happened…..

Last Two Years

image2.jpeg

image6.jpeg

image9.jpeg

image1.jpegimage7.jpegimage8.jpegimage4.jpegimage5.jpegimage3.jpeg

And just like that, within two years time, I was able to overcome all of the ignorance — ignorance that I saturated myself in.  Let’s look back at the years that transformed me into the influential figure I am.  It’s time for the ramble!

My first photo, which was taken at a night safari deep in some forest in Bali, is possibly the best trip I’ve ever had in my life.  Bali, an alluring island that’s tucked away in the bottom of Indonesia, was one of those chips that changed me as a human being.  It should’ve been the trip that made me quit my current job, but it never crossed my mind.  This island is inhabited with white sandy beaches, quiet beachside fronts, jungles, monkeys, and a rich history.  The indigenous people there are full of smiles, big round eyes, and possess such a wonderful heart.

The second Spartan Race, which took place in Chon Buri, Thailand, was a memorable WALK.  I’m kidding.  However, I’m not kidding about it just being a long walk.  Regardless of laziness and the willingness to push yourself, this was one of my favorite runs because the amount of smiles and people pushing each other.

Maldives.  I’m laughing while writing this because this was a country that featured no currency.  That’s right.  I went there with Thai currency, only to be turned away and had no means of getting any currency while I was there.  Until I was met with the most incredible gesture anyone has ever given me.  This trip, which could’ve been a hell of a lot better, taught me a lot about myself in general.

Ho Chi Mihn City – the city of beautiful souls.  Well, not all.  I got cussed out roadside by a Vietnamese boy who was soliciting me for services *curling eyes*.  Going inside the remnants war museum and seeing the pure destruction the USA Army unleashed upon all Vietnamese crippled me inside.  Not only that, but it made me realize how strong-willed the Vietnamese are.

First Spartan Race in Malaysia (and the one just two weeks ago) were FUN! Wait, I’ll take that back. The first Spartan race SUCKED.  Ok, yes….it was near public transportation (versus the last one that was in the middle of a damn jungle), but there weren’t comedians or anyone cheering each other on – on the course.  Get what I’m saying? But a Sprint and Super have been achieved.  It’s time for the BEAST!

Moving into my new condo and leaving a place that was killing my insides…was a monumental feature.  I believe I brought all the pain from the beginning of the years to my last job and it held me down.  I took the leap of faith, left, and I could finally breathe again.

Anyways, enough of that.  How about checking some things off my list! Sheraton Hotel, which is a five-star hotel in KL, was put on my 101 goals list in 2015 — ACHIEVED! It wasn’t the only one to join the “checking” list with several others being highlighted.

And last but not least, the trip back to Arizona — a place I haven’t been in years.  I competed in a Tough Mudder after fighting off food poisoning (courtesy of Singapore Airlines – Thank You!).

All in all, when I was looking in my camera roll on my iPhone, I began to tear up.  How was I able to overcome all of it?

Personal development, of course.  5 years in Thailand and I still go through the craziness of it all.  So, I want to just say THANK YOU to no only my loyal followers and supporters, but the fact that I never gave up.

Evaluating My Spartan Score

So I was practically top 25%, and almost 20%, in all categories.  If I look at the time, it’s not that good.  I don’t know exactly what happened during the race, but the obviously made it to be very difficult for attaining a good time.  I think I completed my Spartan Sprint last year in Thailand in a much better time than this, and I kinda walked the entire time!

So, how can I go about getting better? This is the best because I know where I am and where I want to be.

If you ask me, “where do you wanna be?”

Top 5%.  That’s always been a goal.  However, the terrain and everything could be so difficult to hit that mark.

I’ve gotten much stronger.  Again, I was passing so many people buy and didn’t have any stress on my body.  I’ve woken up this morning and it doesn’t even feel like I did the race yesterday.  No soreness or anything.  However, it didn’t reflect the time.  Might I say that I had to wait about 30 minutes total throughout all the obstacles, especially the one where we had to go through a creek and into a river.

I’m on a Spartan group on an app and I told everyone some vital information.

Cardio! Cardio! Cardio! There needs to be a lot of focus on cardio because that’s all part of the race.  One of the racers said, “I didn’t think I needed cardio.”  He failed miserably.  Another one said he did cardio everyday but it didn’t prepare him for the amount of hills the race had.  This is the super scary part about doing races in places like Malaysia.  They use hills and terrain to JACK YOU UP — EFFECTIVELY.

Having a very strong core can get you through most upper-body exercises.  One girl had me bust out in laughing by saying, “man, I did all that just to climb two feet over and fall.”  I laughed, but with her, not at her.  I then showed my strength by using the circles on the black-plastered wall and went all the way across with ease.  How? Strong core and utilizing it rather than using my upper-body.  It does revolve around technique, but your core is the foundation of it ALL.

Upper body, of course, is essential.  I’ve done lots of building up all areas the top and it proved to be extremely vital.

So, now in preparation for my Super, which is double the distance of the sprint, I’m going to do a lot of core building, strength on top, and tons of cardio.

 

Spartan Race: Seminyih, Malaysia…ACHIEVED! But……

WHAT. A. RACE.

Where should I begin? Let’s me take you from the beginning so I can provide some flow.

I arrived maybe around 9:15 to the station KTM – Kajang station.  This was nearest to the super rural area the where the race was being held.  From there, Ubers was stacked all around me.  I pressed it and got an immediate message – my uber was right across the street.  HOW CONVENIENT! He was a funny guy, asking me why I don’t have a girlfriend in Thailand.

Told him the truth. You guys know that story. LOL

There was a logjam about 2km outside the race area, so I had him pull over and I walked it from there.  Enthusiasts, not as many as I thought there would be, were making their way to registration.  Loads of tents and little shops were stacked within the area, giving my hope that this venue would be 1000 times better than the last at Putrajaya Heights last July.  It exceeded my expectations — and THEN SOME.  The registration line was about 10 minutes compared to 1.5 hours last time.  Bag drop was convenient with a bunch of smiley faces and women asking me how the race was (of course after) and there was a lot of area and merchandise around.

I was probably the 3rd wave of the Open.  There were a ton of people behind me, all whom were enthusiastic.  Some were first timers and others were returning.  You had people from Brunei, Hong Kong, Singapore, China and other places all around.  When the race started, it was all running, mostly uphill (as Malaysia mostly does) and then were the rocks.  That’s right.  The first obstacle, aside from the walls and things we had to jump through, under, and over, was the nastiest of them all.  This is where the fun began because the comedians started coming out in force.  Being on an obstacle course enables you to speak freely amongst your fellow samaritans who are going through the same pain.

At this time, this is when I knew I had gotten much strong since last September.  Carrying the bucket of rocks up the hill didn’t present me with a problem.  In fact, I was zooming past everyone else who seemed gassed and out of breath — 2km in?! I was screaming motivational things while hearing the echo of “aroo” deep in the forests and even nearby.  Directly following that was the rope climb.  I finally climbed up that bad boy; however, I freaked out when I was coming down and I zoomed down the rope, gripping it with my fingers and feeling fire tear apart my thumb on my left hand and my ring finger on my right, leaving a blister on one hand and two layers of skin on the rope from…..me.  This was beyond painful for about 1km.  After that, the river, which was SUEPR FUN.  There were women saying, “I HAVE A PLAN TO CATCH!”  People were laughing and just having fun at that point.  Being in a shaded, sketchy, peculiar area between two sides of a mountain, trekking through currents puts the “omg” into what Spartan should be about.

From there on out, there weren’t any noticeable or stand-outish things that came about — just more laughs and weird obstacles.  I am now 3/3 in the javelin toss, hitting my target and cheering for myself.  There were some GORGEOUS women nearby saying, “goodjob!” Another one, who must’ve been from Eastern Europe and on the same team of the 10 that were standing around, asked me “tips?”  I didn’t know what she was saying, but when I realized it, I was flabbergasted and helped two of the ladies — unsuccessfully.  This definitely had to be the funnest Spartan or any race in general.  It tips the Tough Mudder in Melbourne, Australia 3 years ago and tops the Tough Mudder in Mesa, Arizona from last year.

Towards the end, there was a Malaysian guy who was running by himself…pushing himself.  I decided to run beside him; and both him and I met up with an Indian guy.  The three of us started running alongside some other foreigners and funny Ukrainians before getting to a difficult part of the course — the end!  This mashed a bunch of obstacles together: backstroking 75 meters, another river with a current, monkey bell swings, and a few others.  When I finished, I saw a gorgeous shirt and medal waiting for me.  That was definitely a 10km beast of a race.  That wasn’t 7km….and they had Super/Beast obstacles within it, too.  The Spartan Sprint last year in Chon Buri, Thailand was a cake walk compared to this.

So, showers, chats with so many people, figuring out my next step with the trifecta and everything in ensued.  Now came the most difficult challenge of my life.

Because this race was tucked away in a jungle plantation, I wasn’t too nervous about finding a taxi until after a race.  There were taxis, also known as extortionists (and way worse than Thai taxis), sitting outside the grounds.  However, they were all taken because they had customers inside.  I never thought about that because I knew taxis were a ripoff.  I saw one taxi driver, and later saw him at my hotel.  That story will follow.

No Ubers, no grabs, no nothing! I was left walking….about 5km, hoping either someone would help take me to a town or a taxi would come.  I would’ve paid anything at any given time to get the hell out of there.  Some people pulled over, but not for me.  Next thing I know I see a car, coming towards me, flash its lights and I said, “OMG! SAVED!”  My man Anson, who is down below in the photo, probably saved me from dying.  That’s no exaggeration, either.

image1

All in all, he sent me all the way to an LRT line.  After 15 minutes, this particular line wrapped around KL and I saw Berjaya Times Square, just across the street from where my hotel was.  Instead of continuing on, I got off, talked to the guy, and I was able to exit the station and walk to my hotel.

Oh, and guess who was there? That f***er that denied me a ride to begin with.  Get this.  From the KTM Kajang to the race grounds was about 23 ringits, which equates to about 7 USD.  Kinda expensive in Thailand.  However, this guy told me someone AT MY HOTEL went to the race, too! The bad part? The taxi charged him 400 ringits there and back, equivalent to more than 100$ USD!  Could you believe that?! That’s why I NEVER TAKE TAXIS in KL and haven’t in almost five years.  They’re cheats beyond belief.

I needed to tell all of you that in case you travel here.

And with that beings said, a couple more blogs are coming up about my time and future races, so stay tuned and a podcast is here for your appetite!

Travel Blog: Episode 4 – Malindo Air, Interesting Characters, Centrally Located Hotel & Nandos

Nervous, anxious, shallow-breathing – what the hell was wrong with me? I should’ve been elated, jumping for joy that the ties are finally being ripped away from a three-and-a-half year old job.  However, when I was on the skytrain, I was feeling ridiculous anxious about it all.  Nonetheless, when the sunlight began coming through on the bus while I was sitting comfortably inside and on top of an expressway, I felt a hell of a lot better.

Upon arriving to the 2nd airport in Bangkok (Don Meung), I was getting in line when I saw one of my old TOEFL students.

This lady, who’s a millionaire, learned with me last September and October at one of the universities on a special project.  When I saw her, my jaw dropped and we met each other with smiles and pictures.  While all this was happening, I looked over my shoulder and was appalled by the scenes.

Never Fly Air Asia X or Nok Scoot

If there were two flights leaving out of Don Meung via Air Asia, passengers on the second flight would’ve missed it, due to herds of Chinese tour groups (massive problem apparently). I then looked further down the terminal and Nok Scoot was hampered by loudness (lol) and rudeness.  On the other hand, Malindo Air, which I would make my first ever appearance on, had only one passenger.

Indonesian Words

“Let them be.  They need you because you’re a teacher.  You’re fine.”

Conversations, of all sorts, were developing between this samaritan and I and he gave me some words of wisdom.  Of course defeating myself and psychological barriers I’ve created because the opinions of Thais, he kindly asked me if I had a girlfriend or wife.  Every time I say “no,” to people all around the country and world, they’re shocked.

I, too, am shocked.

But before they ask me if I like men, I quickly point out that Thai women despise black men. Is that the truth? No.  Not all Thai women, but around 80% of them do.  He then gave me some words of wisdom that felt great from a stranger I had only known for 5 minutes.

Malindo Air – Typical Delay, New Seats, Zero Turbulence, Half-Empty Plane!

I don’t get out one plane can be late with no passengers on it.  The pilot said, “backlogged.” However, same thing happened when I took Malaysia Airlines.  Try 3.5 hours late.  So, there’s something obviously wrong with KLIA 1 & 2 (the international airports in Malaysia) and Thailand, which was delayed because I saw, with my own eyes, the workers moving like robots.

Do I care? Not really….but just do a good job. LOL. That’s all I ask.  But no worries! I’m here!

The plane itself was pretty damn big – given the fact that it was a BOEING. The first class seats, which is divided into only two sections and separated it with a light drape, was GORGEOUS for a small plane.  The seats were much more spacious than any other Air Asia flight I’ve been on, too.  And most importantly, MY LUGGAGE SHOWED UP! You know, I lost my luggage for a week back in 2016, and to this day, I’m still scared when luggages are coming out of the belt from down below, swaying form side-to-side – hoping!

People Skills = SOUND!

From making people laugh at a pizza stand at KL Sentral, to sparking up conversations with passerbys at the station.  My positivity/PMA is INSANE, but my people skills have continued to develop since I started learning about personal development.

PARKROYAL – Kuala Lumpur

So, is this a Sheraton like hotel? Not exactly sure.  Haven’t looked around the hotel just yet, but the service was FIRE! Better than GTower (two years ago), and Sheraton (last year). Plus, handling the bill at the beginning if you don’t have a credit card is super essential.  Or else, they will freeze your the full booking price and charge you, on top of that, at checkout.  It’s a hassle and pain in the ass.

Small, but very comfortable room.  Lighting and air controlled by a button.  Is it worth the amount I paid for it? Hell no. Lol.  I think it’s a $70 a night hotel, not a $100 dollar a night.  However, I’ve yet to see what amenities it has and the breakfast.

Nando’s – Australia – Circa 2011

This was my first meal in Australia when I first moved there,  My girlfriend, at the time, was sitting next to me with her erratic “distant” friend Evans, who I later left because of threats, and his GF.  Oh, good times!

Let’s come back to Nando’s.  This is Portuguese chicken at it’s very best.  I’ve missed it like I missed the cereal Kix.  So, as the train was wrapping around, seeing my hotel on the right side, I glanced over to the left and onto the streets down below and WAAA-LAHHH! NANDO’S! I went there for dinner and although I didn’t have the piri-piri sauce with me, it was still amazing.

Here’s the beginning of my trip with much more looming!

https://www.spreaker.com/user/thearseniobuckshow/travel-pod-episode-1-malindo-air-interes