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Wednesday, 24 November 2010

My 1st Overseas Event - Manila, Philippines!

YUM!

Nope, I didnt forget to put a photo of food up there. =) YUM is the 'headquarters' of 5 restaurants - KFC, Pizza Hut, A&W, Taco Bell and Long John Silvers, and every year, they organize a Champs Challenge for KFC and Pizza Hut (PH) in different parts of Asia. I've done the one they held in Kuala Lumpur, at the Crowne Plaza Mutiara, and now, mabuhay Manila! =)
Unfortunately, since it was a work trip, I didnt get to go around as much as I'd like, nor did I get to take many photos.. But it was a great trip anyway! 1st I had to get the coach (1st class baby!)into Singapore, where I stayed one night with Amal & Alan, before getting on the plane (Singapore Air) together with Moe, DJ Sham, and another coordinator, Natalie. It was a 3 hour flight, and the plane was totaly full! I got a middle seat.. =( The food was nice though! (of course, have to mention the food!) I slept during takeoff, then watched 3 back-to-back episodes of Glee..

After touching down, we took an hour's coach ride to our hotel in Makati City, Hotel InterContinental. The security in the Philippines is out of this world - guards with bomb detectors goin around the vehicles before allowing them to go up to the lobby, sniffer dogs in front of the main doors, and bag checks + frisking before entering any malls! =O As Amal said, usually the more security the safer you feel, but here it makes you worry even more, because you know they need this much security! Our rooms were awesome though.. Really nice.. I was sharing a room with Natalie..

As with every event, it was straight to work once we reached the hotel, not even checking into our rooms before setting up in the Maniac Centre (basically our workplace and registration hall). By the time we went up it was, I'd say, around 10pm? We had dinner then all got ready for an early rise.

Next day was the welcome, where each team (KFC Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Cambodia, Guam and Hawaii / Pizza Hut Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Indonesia, and Japan) were welcomed with a fusion traditional/bboy dance in the lobby upon arrival. The Filipino dancers were amazing! All the backflips, somersaults, breakdance moves they did? Everyone loved it! The welcome dinner followed, when the next night was Night of National Pride. Every country dressed up in their national costumes, and enjoyed activities in the foyer before proceeding to a fun-filled night complete with international buffet.

Then, no rest for the weary! Another early morning for everyone as we had the Champs Challenge! This is where every country competes for the Customer Service Awards awarded by Yum.. Staff recognition is a big thing with them! The biggest night of all came on the last night.. The gala dinner! The performances were da bomb, and the energy of everyone was through the roof! I had so much fun, and I was a coordinator! Imagine what the Champs were feeling! =DMoe Alkaff, our celebrity emcee, doing his thang! =D
Clockwise from left: Chay, Natalie, Amal and I!

So that was it, a great experience, and a great success! =) Can't wait for the next YUM event.. We had half a day free before flying back to Singapore (Yep - country no. 3: Just you wait! ;p), so Amal and I went to a place called Greenhills which is like an indoor flea market kind of thing, where they sell all these handicrafts, ornaments, clothes, jewelry, knockoff bags etc..
A friend of Moe's, Chay took us there.. She's so sweet.. =) We had a great time buying stuff (I bought mostly souveniers for everyone, lol!), but I wish we had more time to go and experience the real Manila.. O well! MAybe I'll have the chance to go there again someday! =) Unfortunately there wasnt time to visit my uncle Henry and his family either, they stay in the outskirts of Manila.. =(
Me love stars! =D These made me stare in wonder for a very long time! ;p

Til we go to Singapore - Calista, Adyos Philippines!
xxx

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