World of Jeremiah's Junk

Optimist, Activist,Optometrist and Reservist. Welcome to my world.

Saturday, 6 March 2010

Snow on a Summer Day in Melbourne (Melbourne Freak Weather)

FYI: That's not really snow, it's golf ball-sized hail.

My 3rd day in lonely Melbourne. I was just off to Aldi Supermarket along Franklin street to get some groceries.. however, it was only after I bought myself a can of tuna did I realise that I lacked a can opener. Aldi, in all its gl$ry did not sell can openers.. at least, not in the city branch. Oh one thing, I never fail to surprise people whenever I tell them that Aldi made Karl Albrecht the RICHEST MAN in GERMANY and one of the richest in the world (cc 2009, Forbes).. Yes, bet you thought all the rich people got there by owning IT software firms or Casinos!

Anyway, since the mighty Aldi didn't stock can openers, I headed to QV shopping mall. The weather was so hot! Thankfully, I was wearing just a T-shirt and my bermudas/shorts. As I headed past the familiar Victoria State Library, my attention was drawn to the church on the right. Cross Culture Church, where a couple was getting married and taking pictures at the entrance.. When i finaly arrived, i headed straight down to the basement where Big W is. After getting lost in the maze of Big W, i finally found my can opener... The cheapest one on offer: AUD15.85 !!! Grrr.. WHY would anyone pay AUD$21 for a simple can opener!?!? I dont care if you included a magnet to pull out the lid.. I wont use it anyway!

Sorry for the lengthy introduction, but after getting my can opener, it was time for me to head back to Arrow on Swanston where I lived. That's when the horror started.. I was just heading out from the basement when I a very deep rumbling sound, i thought there was some construction going on involving heavy machinery. Turns out.. I was wrong!

When I arrived at the street level, I got a shock, the sound was from thousands of solid hard rock smashing against the roof of QV! The sky was completely overcast with the most steady hail shower I ever seen! The entire man-made lawn in QV was white (see picture below) and everyone was just snapping pictures with their mobile phones, specifically, their iPhones hehe..

As the hail hit the ground, it actually bounces back up about 1 metre, before falling back down again

As if that wasn't bad enough, things quickly deteriorated. The hail shower became a hail storm and visibility dropped to a mere 50metres. I could see columns of water rushing off the roof of QV and all of a sudden, we were getting wet! I was just standing outside 'Flight Experience' when water burst through the ceiling. The escalator was getting wet and was turning into a mini water feature.. Almost immediately after, the lights went out! Thank goodness that triggered the emergency blackout lighting..Strangely, flight experience remained well lit. The flight simulator 'pilot' even came out to see what was going on in the real world.

Amidst the deafening roar of ice and wind hitting the roof, police sirens and excited screams, I never felt so cold on a summer day.. it was sheer pandemonium.

"I've never experienced hail like this before in my entire life!', exclaimed an excited 30 odd year old caucasian lady.

I ran across to Melbourne Central hoping to get a tram. Strangely the usually busy roads (namely Swanston Street) were deserted. The view across the road of the Victoria State Library was absolutely stunning (see pics below). The grass lawn which was previously filled with adolescents a moment before was now WHITE WHITE WHITE.. it was covered in 'snow', or rather, half melted hail. I could see frantic people running around in their suits and dresses.. they were from the wedding at cross culture church.

"Why does it have to rain on my parade.. or rather, my wedding day" - Cross Culture Church

We were packed like sardines under the tiny tram shelter when it started to leak.. i guess like the roof of QV, it wasnt designed to handle heavy rain.

"Mummy, the Ice Age is coming!!!" exclaimed an excited 4-5 year old girl.

When the tram finally arrived, I was literally pushed up the tram by the people behind me who were dying to get up. By now the worst of the storm was over, it was just raining regular heavy rain, much like a typical tropical shower in Singapore. The packed tram smelled really bad.. so many people were squeezed in and the dampness just brought out so much odour!! The youth beside me took off comepletely drenched is t-shirt.

"..we were at federation square, when one of the roofs just simply collapsed!.."
the half naked youth explained.

Along the way, the storm left a path of destruction. Tables and chairs were strewn all over the walkways from the Al fresco cafes outside the verve. The weather was so bad that staff just watched dismally (from indoors) as their signs and tables were thrown around by the raging winds.

Finally, i got off the tram and ran to my hotel on Arrows.. Along the way, the drains were spouting water out like blowholes! I guess the city rain drainage systems weren't specifically designed to handle large volumes of freak weather.

Phew I made it!!! When I finally got to my hotel, there were towels strewn all over the lobby.. too much water had gone into building and staff were trying to control the flow in. Thankfully, my room was alright and there was no power outages. I turned on the TV to find Southern Cross Station evacuated everyone due to rising concerns of ice piling on the glass roof.. as a result, all trains were cancelled/delayed. I also heard that in an unprecedented move, super saturday horse race in flemington was cancelled due to freak weather.. instead, it was replaced with a comedy involving sexual themes. Is that channel 7's way of apology? hehe... Anyway..

The model of the story is.. always remember to bring a jacket and a rain coat along when you're in Melbourne.. or else you might find yourself in a 'wet and wild' situation! Which reminded me of a joke.. Why are all the hurricanes named after ladies? Ans: Because they were all 'wet n wild'. *laughs hysterically at own joke*
Updated on 07 Mar 2010: Thank goodness the staff at Southern cross had the sense to evacuate everyone, (part of) the glass roof DID shatter and collapsed due to the weight of the ice!

Thursday, 16 July 2009

From The Office of the Prize Award Administrator

If you've chanced upon this article, it probably means you typed in "UOB cardmembers", "99% disqualified", "Reader's Digest", or "guaranteed chance of winning S$200 000".

Recently, my friend's father received a letter from UOB (in an official UOB letter). In the letter, it's stated that he has 'made it'. Whilst 99% of other UOB cardmembers have been disqualified, he is still game to receive an 'important envelope' in the next 3-5 days and within it contains a 'guaranteed winning chance' to receive S$200 000.

My immediate instinct screamed "SCAM!!" So I've called up the UOB office. The lady whom I spoke with told me that it's a LEGITIMATE promotional tie-in with the Reader's Digest here in Singapore, but they cannot give me further details. I was instead directed to 62581111 (Reader's digest enquiries number).

I've called reader's digest the staff member gave me the impression that I was not the first to call. Anyway, to save her and her colleagues the trouble, I shall do the service of explaining what the whole thing is all about.

Basically, she told me that this was a promotion/advertisement for their services. The tie-in with UOB means UOB cardmembers will be given a discount when signing up for a minimum year long subscription. Only then will you be eligible to be in the running for the s$2000 000 'sweepstakes', as dictated by the 'Michelle Zee, the Prize Award Administrator'.

In a few days, that lucky 1% of UOB cardmembers will be receiving that all-important 'yellow envelope' - as described by Michelle Zee et al. I expect that yellow envelope to contain a tick box to ask you if you're interested in taking part in the $200 000 draw, but in the process of agreeing, you inadvertantly signed-up for a year long subscription of the Reader's digest.

So if you're thinking your big day has come... dreaming of the limousine picking you up from your place to the 'Office of the Prize' (as dictated by Michelle Zee), just remember.. it's a promotion which requires a subscription.

Now why such a reputable magazine like the Reader's Digest would follow a scam-like marketing method eludes me.. the fact that UOB gives out our card details, full name and home address makes me question their professional ethics.

In tough times like these.. capitalizing on the GFC seems to be the direction many advertising firms seem to heading toward..

Thursday, 9 July 2009

A Duplicitous Affair

A Duplicitous Affair

Du*plic"i*ty\, n.; pl. Duplicities. [F. duplicit['e], L. duplicitas, fr. duplex double. See Duplex.]
2. Doubleness of heart or speech; insincerity; a sustained form of deception which consists in entertaining or pretending to entertain one of feelings, and acting as if influenced by another; bad faith.

Tuesday, 25 November 2008

Thursday, 3 July 2008

Carolyn's Belated 23rd

Carolyn's 23rd Bday Party
@ Party World
Melbourne Central
211 LaTrobe StreetMelbourne VIC 3000
Happy Belated Bday Carolyn!!