May 27, 2013

One of those weekends....

.... which were more interesting than others.

Friday was Wesak Day, I had the day off from work and spent it at SJBA for their annual Wesak celebrations. We sang songs, we waved flags, we had Datuk Hannah Yeoh and Wong Chen drop by for a visit, then I hanged around lepaking with friends and help promote their upcoming Teen Dhamma Camp. TDC is a camp similar to the Youth Dhamma Camp which I joined last year, but for the younger age group of 13-19 year olds. I had lots of fun and thoroughly enjoyed the day!!

On Saturday after my half-day at work I went over to Stadium Merdeka to witness Porsche Club Malaysia's attempt at setting a record for the largest Porsche cars gathering in the country. Although they didnt reach their 200+ attendance target, they still managed to set a record with 152 cars. Later in the evening I went over to Dataran Merdeka where I would watch (some) of the Porsches join in the Citrawarna/Colours of Malaysia 2013 parade. Braving the slight rain, I managed to capture the entire convoy on video which you can watch below. It was quite the pity though because another convoy called Lady Bikers with their much much louder motorcycles made the Porsches look absolutely tame and timid. Cant wait for a gang of Ferraris or Lamborghinis to avenge this humiliation.

Then on Sunday I headed over to The Summit where there was a roadshow for the latest Fast and Furious 6 movie. There were some cars on display, remote controlled cars, and the one that caught my attention, a Gran Turismo 5 simulator complete with pedals, steering wheel and bucket seat. Since it was free and I had nothing else to do on a Sunday afternoon I thought, oh what the heck, lets have some fun. So I registered my name (thinking it was to queue up to play), waited, and watched all these little kids who probably just started primary school making an absolute mess of crashing and smashing their cars. I know they are just kids but, as a (former) avid racing gamer it's just an utter cringe to watch.

So then came my turn, and despite never having myself play with a racing simulator, I managed to win the two-lap race against computer AI. I was very sure the difficulty was set to the easiest level when a guy after me still won despite going off track and hitting the wall a few times. Whatever, apparently because I had registered myself earlier, winning the race earned me a free ticket voucher to watch the movie! For the first time in many many many years have I actually won something! ANYTHING!!!!! Havent used it to watch the movie yet though. I might end up giving it to a friend since I've never been a fan of the series. Or perhaps I'll go watch with a bunch sometime soon...

I'm a winner!!

May 13, 2013

May Updates


I last left you with the dilemma I faced about my internship placement, and later deciding to just give it a shot at applying with Mercedes. Well, after passing my finals (just barely), I was called for an interview with 4 other guys; 2 of which are my classmates at their headquarters in PJ two Mondays ago.

Everything went smoothly, and two weeks (!) later I received the call that my placement had been approved. One of my classmates and another guy however got rejected.
So there you have it, I'm officially a Mercedes intern. More on my first day of work later.

WHILE I WAS WAITING for the results of my interview, last Thursday saw the superconvoy of Lamborghini supercars assembling for a tour of Malaysia to mark the company's 50th anniversary.
Sadly, tragically, majabashabaswabblly, I had completely forgotten about it when I was informed of the planned convoy about a week earlier. It wasnt until I was eating lunch in front of the computer when I saw a friend's photo of the parked supercars.

Not this one though. This is taken by

 I was left bitterly emo about it for a few days, and still slightly sour about it today. Gerh.

Now then, my first day of work in Mercedes. My friends and I came at 8, were assigned a locker to share, had our fingerprints scanned into the database. When it scans our fingerprint, it records the date and time of the scan which will serve as our punch card for the next 6 months. At the end of the month, the records are printed to be our attendance, uhm, record. Yeah, I'm typing using my 'punchcard', so to speak. We were given company shirts, had  a briefing with our manager, and finally assigned to our teams. 

There are several service teams here. Two teams handle the repairs and servicing, another team does overhauling, another does frontline aka service consultant, and so on. For me, I'm starting with one of the repairs and servicing team, and every month we will be rotated to different teams to get a broader exposure of working life. Within each team is a leader, and finally the technicians who report to their respective leaders. My leader just so happens to be a graduate from TOC.
Within the team, I will be guided by one of the technicians, Steven. Seems friendly and very willing to teach.

We have a 15-minute break in the morning and afternoon, as well as a 1 hour lunch break where we can go to the company cafeteria. Well, working on such advanced cars like Mercedes, I think the short breaks are appreciated and much needed, although we can choose to skip the break and continue working. Working hours are 8-5, and halfday on Saturday! 

Also, there's no need for us to mop or sweep the floor, but I think if we make a mess we'll be cleaning that ourselves.  Fair enough.
And there's no need for anybody to go out and buy food for colleagues. 
And there's no need for us to be sending customers whenever they leave their car.
And there's no need for us to be sent out running around for spare parts or whatever.

Basically lots of kuli work from my first year training which I no longer have to do. I think. Seems like it.  I'm feeling positive about working life here already. BUT, of course, given the standards and demands of such a company, I can foresee it wont be goyang kaki all the way either.
Anyways, I'm having my hopes up and motivations high to maximise my time here, given how it was to some extent, wasted in my first training.