Such a Cool Venue for OLPC Asia Base Camp!

Trip Start Oct 14, 2009
1
57
59
Trip End Jul 01, 2014


Loading Map
Map your own trip!
Map Options
Show trip route
Hide lines
shadow
Where I stayed
Hotel Sentral

Flag of Malaysia  , Melaka State,
Monday, November 18, 2013

November 16 arrived and after months of dreaming and planning by organizer TK Kang, of Hong Kong. Now we know why TK chose this date. It is a lucky day for him to return to the town of his birth and boyhood, historic Malacca, Malaysia. This interesting lovely riverside town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and I am very excited to be here. In my wildest dreams, never did I imagine the adventures that my OLPC volunteer work have provided!

I am staying at the Hotel Sentral 1 km or so away from the venue. I booked in early October at a great rate on trust Agoda! The Hotel is as expected, and is working out fine for me. The best part, is that the non-smoking room has bare floors (no stuffy carpet smell), great central AC (& it is otherwise hot and humid in Malacca), and a separate shower with good pressure and hot water in the small bathroom. There's a pool on the 10th floor with a nice view of the city. I'd give it a 3 Star because of the central air and showers!


On the first afternoon here TK took us on a walking tour of his boyhood neighborhood.  I saw many people (even elderly) riding bicycles and noticed some for rent also.I rented a bike (the best smart move I did here) and can quickly get around this charming town, and get some exercise too. We had torrential rains on Saturday night and I did take a taxi from the hotel to our group dinner. OLPC Asia sponsored the delicious and fun dinner event held at Bistro 1628 on popular Jonker Street. I sat at the vegetarian table and we had vegetarian prawns and vegetarian chicke; really interesting tofu, soy and tempah products prepared very tasty. Tee shirts were handed out and there was a birthday cake and candle for TK. Happy Birthday TK & thank you (Anthony Wong) for taking such a large group to dinner.

The lovely historic and restored Wayfarer Guest House on the Malacca River is the conference venue. (The rooms there had quickly booked.) On the first conference day, Saturday, we really crowded the informal spaces. We welcomed group of about 30 exchange students from Africa who are studying at an Islamic University in KL that had been invited to attend and learn about volunteerism. They did not know anything about the XO laptop, OLPC or the mission of digital education for the world's poorest children, so the introductory events were pretty basic. We also had attendees from around Asia, teachers from an International School in Singapore, and many from Hong Kong, & China. Rabi is here from Nepal, Christoph from Austria, Adam from Boston/Toronto, & Tony from the West Coast. We are an impressive group of "movers and shakers."

Yesterday (Sunday), we were a smaller and more workable group. We got into the meat of the conference in many ways; breakout groups for Education, Technology and Community Organization independent of OLPC going forward were some the subjects for lively discussion.

For a late lunch, I headed over to the Discovery Cafe where I had rented my bike. There was a new baby and first time Mom I befriended (as I tend to do). My new friend Anan invited me to the baby's first month old party last evening...buffet Burmese/ Malay dinner and cake. In their custom
(maybe because of infant mortality rates) when the baby makes it to one month old it is considered to be a healthy child and celebrated. An invitation to a local life cycle event is a travel
treasure. Thank you for the fun evening and tasty treats, Anan!
 
On our 3rd Base Camp day, our earnest and slightly smaller group completed serious discussions formulating our OLPC Asia Pacific group needs, wishes and plans going forward. In the afternoon, many things were happening simultaneously. I shared my Khan & Digital Literacy Group videos with many participants, along with other files that folks were finding helpful. My repair session to demo fixing the black screen after storage brick problem which happens when the clock battery discharges completely in the motherboard, was very popular and successful. And with Wan and Waita's help, Sonia and Meisya both learned to reflash their XOs to a new build and the 19 XOs we borrowed to use for BaseCamp were wiped and made brand new for transport back to the SEMOA farm for the children's XO laptop project at the Orang Asli Education Center (OAEC).

OLPC BaseCamp Asia Pacific was a great success. I loved meeting everyone and learning so much!

Enjoy the photos. Click on any photo to scroll through larger images.:)
Slideshow Report as Spam

Post your own travel photos for friends and family More Pictures

Use this image in your site

Copy and paste this html: