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September 9, 2009

Dhátu Amazing Race, Cambodia

Princess Cheryl's thought of the day:- Today is 090909, this is a schdeuled post to jot down some historical moments in my life in conjunction with the beautiful date of 090909 at 9.09 AM!~

Eating worms, soaking in "insect bath", 4WD race... Are those what you have in your mind when you hear "AMAZING RACE"?

Dhátu is an ancient Pali word that refers to Nature's four elements - fire, water, earth and air. Buddhism has always praised these four elements and highly considered them as being the complementary creators of the Outer Space and of all formal matters one may encounter on this earth.

Dhátu flag flying high~

Welcoming letter received at the start of the race.

The rules of the game are simple yet fundamental:
Do not cheat and follow the rules and instructions provided in given envelopes at all time.
Honor effectiveness, perspicacity and speed - whatever your location in town, if granted time is over, head back immediately to your hotel.
Any use of personal items or cash to win a challenge is strictly forbidden.
Tuk-tuks will carry you along this adventure - however, no tuk-tuk is to leave and go ahead without all other tuk-tuks from the same team following too. Also, remember that tracking other teams' tuk-tuk will be misleading as teams are given different itineraries!
Uncollected points and/or required items cannot be claimed at the end of the race. All points and items are to be carefully kept with you and brought to the final leg of the race.

Kramas (local scarves) and animal tags are to be worn at all times! This is how people will recognize the team. My team - the Rooster. We had a total of 8 challenges, but not as extreme as what you think.

Tasks awaiting...

So as per mentioned in the rules, our main transport throughout the race was tuk-tuk.

Our team members.

First station was at the lotus pond outside downtown Siem Reap.

We had to pick 3 lotus buds from the lotus pond. The area was swampy and slippery...and very very hot under the big hot sun.

After lotus pond, we headed for Challenge #2.

Tuk-tuks racing towards Wat Svai.

That was a long journey and the road was bumpy... From the photo you can see that I was almost thrown out of the tuk-tuk.

Our tuk-tuk overtook the other teams. Can see so many chasing up at the back.

2 minutes later we were the first! *nyek^nyek^*

Wat Svai finally! This station was torturing.

Melting a big ice cube by barbequeing it in order to get the 'parang' knife out for the next challenges. Everybody had to stand still, holding the bamboo sticks and tie steel wires to connect the steel net to support the ice cube from slipping out. Indeed it's really hard to control!

After that we went to Wat Prom Rath.

We had to guess a riddle and get a key from the correct 'animals' standing there. Disaster!!! We failed...so we missed the golden chance to get the key! =S

Next station was to go to a backstreet near a hotel to collect some points. Collecting points from the tree. Yes, plucking numbers from the tree. Only 10 chances to gather as much points as possible...by plucking the envelopes on the tree. This was where the 'parang' knife is needed.

First we gotta tie the 'parang' knife to a stick.

Concentrating in progress...

Start cutting and plucking. Then the math calculation. 10 chances, might get '0' in every envelop or '20', '30' points or more.

Riverside. Collect as many balls as possible in 30 seconds. If you could see, there were 4 big buckets. Did not manage to snap more photos here because my hands were dirty...

Choose any one bucket, no label of what was inside there with the balls until we put our hands in... Dip your hands into 'it', start search and get the balls out from the bucket.

Bucket #1 - Fish and frog!
Bucket #2 - Jelly
Bucket #3 - I can't remember...I think it's something spiky
Bucket #4 - Mud

Screaming ended after frogs and fishes being thrown out of the bucket. Counting points we get. Lucky I did not pick the mud bucket...

The challenge afterwards - Guess the meat.
This station was set as a restaurant near Blue Pumpking and Red Piano, somewhere at the Pub Street.

4 dishes of meat (they had a long list of meat varieties for you to guess after tasting). We had to either grill it or cook it and EAT IT!

Explanation... "Guess the meat after you eat it. Refer to the list on the chart: chicken, beef, mutton, fish, crocodile, snake, frog, rat..." OMG did I hear RAT??!!

The challenger, but my opponent in the race. I'm in the Rooster team while he's in the Spider team.

My team mates told me it should be crocodile meat....so I swallowed a piece (sounds ok though...at least not something irritating). Actually the raw meats had been marinated with pepper and sauce until you can't differentiate one from another... Only can guess by looking at the raw meat texture and the gut feeling when you chew.

Huh?? It didn't taste like crocodile meat!! More like frog. Seriously... Gotta try another piece....enough. I REALLY HOPE IT WAS NOT RAT MEAT!!

I was praying hard that it was rat meat when the restaurant boss announced the answer for all 4 dishes... though I got it wrong (I answered frog...), but LUCKY enough it's snake meat. Hahhaha... PHeW... Mission accomplished!!

We're the first team to reach Ree Hotel, the last challenge before heading back to our hotel Angkor Palace Resort & Spa. It's water and fun time. Very nice swimming pool.

And a very very beautiful lotus pond at the pool side.

We were really early, even the organizer had not reach the hotel yet! Mission was to unlock the correct treasure chest hide in the middle of the swimming pool!! Are you kidding me?! There were 10!!!! You need to swim to the middle of the pool where the Dhátu flag is located and start searching for a chest out of 10.

Not just search for chest but you need to grab one and swim back to the pool side and get the other members to open it.

If fail...you have to swim back the middle and release the chest back, and continue to try on another one!! To and fro, 10 teams in the pool. You see treasure chests come and go.

Happening poolside. Remember that we failed to get the key? ><" So we did not participate in the challenge.

In a short while we quickly head back to our hotel for the last task. The monks were already waiting at the garden.

The whole racing thingy would only be considered complete after we pass back the team animal tags into baskets on the table.

Other than that we also need to present the 3 lotus buds plucked from the very first station at the start of the game.

After the whole team has gathered together, the monks did chanting to bless all the participants. Blessings of goodluck and have a safe trip back home.

We were the 2nd team to complete the Amazing Race!!!

Well, this is something really nice. See the light from heaven? Yes indeed this was the champion team!! The Spider. However the results were only announced at the night. Look at Noel's face... ("Damn!! Weather was so damn hot, and I'm soaking wet sweating nonstop. I hope this game will be over ASAP!!)

Yeah~ We're done. First ever Amazing Race that I've participated. And no kidding...we're all exhausted! Not prepared for this at all. It's a surprise.

Right then, these are the Kramas I got from the whole event. One (blue) from the welcoming session, one (green and yellow) from the awards dinner at Cambodia Cultural Village, and one (red) from this Amazing Race.

-- END --

OH WAIT! Let me counter check what stories of Siem Reap that I've still not written yet....
* Arrival at Siem Reap
* The welcoming session (lunch, rehearsal & dinner)
* The QIC competition
* The QIC award dinner at Cambodian Cultural Village
* Sightseeing and teambuilding (Ta Prohm, Bayon, Tonle Sap, Dhátu Amazing Race, Angkor Wat)
* Free & easy day in Siem Reap downtown (shopping & food)

...to be continued...


wow...2nd team...geng!
Such a nice experience....

Yep, 2nd team to reach the destination! But...not the winner lar...ahhaha...
Only got the 6th place.

What was the riddle - any clues??? I am doing the amazing race next week and want to get a key :-)))

Anonymous: I'm sorry but I couldn't really remember it since it's been more than a year ago...

Anonymous: I'm sorry but I couldn't really remember it since it's been more than a year ago...

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