Gunner get my MBA

Sunday, April 30, 2006

We're going to Paris!!! (times two)

Well, as the title suggests, I'm over the moon right now. In this case, there're two things to be excited about.

Firstly as I've said before, the Gunners are going places, and they confirmed it by qualifying for the big Cohuna of Cup finals, i.e. the European Champions League final. The game will be played in Paris, on the 17th of May, and I have a strong feeling that this will be Arsenal's year. In a way, I'm relieved that we got through to the final, after seeing the limp display in Spain last Tuesday night. I guess it's because so much was on the line, that our players (who've switched between the sublime to the ridiculous from game to game) had a bout of nervousness. In the end, I'm glad that it was Lehmann who won the tie for us with his superb penalty save in the 89th minute, and if there was a need for an experienced member of the team to stand up and be counted, then I'm glad it's our German No.1.

So on we move to the final, and to make it even better, we'll be up against Barca, with Ronny and his band of merry attackers who'll be looking to make life miserable for us Arsenal fans. I know that he's officially the world's best, but I see this as the perfect stage for Henry to lay to rest any comparison between the take on the mantle of the world's best player. I also feel that this tie suits us, as we play better when we're underdogs and are written off by critics. We struggled against Villareal when they predicted that we're favourites, so I think that there can't be a better team to cement our underdog status as Barcelona. The way they ripped apart Chelsea and Milan was beautiful to watch at times. Yet.. my prediction is 2-1 to the Arsenal with Henry and Fabregas (ex-Barca youth player) to be the heroes of the night.

Secondly, I've just confirmed that I'll be attending INSEAD. Only that it's not going to be this year but next year. Yupps.. i've got a deferral to the January intake. That's why I've been silent all this while, as I didn't want to say too much before I received confirmation that they allowed my request. INSEAD, like most business schools do not usually give out deferrals, and in this case, they made it clear to me that mine was a special case which given the circumstances would be better for both parties if I started later. I'll elaborate on the reasons later, but some of you readers already know why.

Though I had originally planned to start my MBA this year, and i'll be envious of fellow bloggers who start their program come September, I guess it won't be so bad as INSEAD's one year program means that I'll graduate earlier quickly anyways. Also there's the added possibility of a summer internship and furthermore, I get a bit more time to do a proper handover at work. Not trying to blow my own horn but I know that it will be hard for me to find a replacement and hand over all the work in 3-4 months.

oh well.... I guess I've got enough to think about these next few weeks... till then.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Japan Photos

Some photos from Japan (as requested)

Could this be a real Geisha (or Maiko)? Taken in Kyoto upon our arrival, near the Ryokan we stayed in.

Beautiful Sakura at Maruyama park on a rainy day in Kyoto.

Sakura blooming with A-Bomb dome in background - Hiroshima

bamboo forrest at Arashiyama (Kyoto)

Friday night crowd at Shibuya

Tsukiji fish market, 6.00 a.m. wholesale auction of Tuna.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Back from Japan

Actually was meaning to post earlier, and I actually typed up a short post whilst in Japan but unfortunately all the controls of the web browser was in Japanese, and hence I had to navigate through the blogger website from memory. When I finally when to save the post, I must have deleted it and sure enough everything was lost. Bad luck I guess. Actually, I was posting to say what a surprise it is to be nominated for the best of bloggers, for the MBA applicant blogs. I didn't expect it as I felt my blog was too general to be thought of an MBA blog, and also the fact that I rant on and on about Arsenal every so often. Anyways, I am honoured to be thought of in the same league as some of you established bloggers.

Secondly wanted to let you all know that the Japan trip was great. I had a great time, and experienced both the historical and modern Japan. Sakura was in full bloom (in Kyoto), and though it was chilly, you could definitely feel the freshness of springtime (something which I miss, living in tropical Malaysia). Highlights, would have to be the seeing the Cherry blossoms in the beautiful surroundings in Kyoto, waking up at 5 am to go to the fish market and have toro sashimi at 7am, and meeting Jon bon Jovi at the Park Hyatt New York bar (the bar which Bill Murray spent most of his time in "Lost in Translation").

Overall my wife and I had a great time with our japanese hosts, as well as four friends form Australia which we met up with there. I would definitely want to go back there as there is much more to see, and the food has been great but I think I would need to give my wallet a lot more time to recover from the trip.