29 December 2008

Conference sessions, Phuket carnival and dinner at a Pakistani restaurant

I woke up quite early in the morning probably due to the time difference between Japan and Thailand (Japan time is 2-hr ahead of Thailand time). In fact, I could not sleep well last night despite of being so tired. I went to the balcony of my room and had the first glimpse of the beautiful island. It was simply awesome! I felt good when I had a look of the hotel premises from my balcony. The morning greeted me with magnificent weather. I was surrounded by blue skies and a few puffy white clouds. Tropical trees, flowers, small islands, motor boats, sandy beach, flying birds and fishing nets! All was silent except whisper of the wind. But, I had to give a final touch to my power point slides as my presentation was scheduled in the afternoon session. Besides, opening ceremony of the conference was to commence at 8:30 AM. So, I had no choice but to get ready as quickly as possible. And, I was at the reception desk at around 8:25 AM to drop keys of my room. No wonder that the reception girl welcomed me with a typical Thai 'smile'. By the way, in my previous post, I have tried to investigate the reason why Thailand is popularly known as the 'Land of smiles'.

The conference was to be held in the same hotel and hence, quite convenient for me. Before I could enter the conference room for registration, I saw someone smiling at me. 'Hello!', I replied. Later, he introduced himself as Dr. Adnan ALrabee, a faculty from the department of Information Technology, Al-Balqa University, Jordan. I admire the way he approached to me. I found him an out-spoken yet humble person with smiling face. It took very little time for us to become friends. Recently, one of my blogger friend wrote an interesting post 'A silent journey' where he mentioned that many people find it difficult to open up with someone new to them. I don't know if it's good or bad, I definitely don't belong to that category. Normally, traveling and making new friends are among my hobbies.

The conference kicked off with a keynote speech by Dr. Hj. Kamaruzaman Jusoff, a distinguished professor from the Yale University, USA. He talked about the current research advancements that has been achieved so far in 'machine vision system'. The most interesting point that I found was the ability of such a system, installed in an aircraft, to precisely determine the volume of different types of tropical trees from ultra-high altitudes. The prof. claimed that 80% of success has already been achieved and that after complete success of the system, it would be easy to determine the density of a forest which, in turn, will be helpful in combating the global warming problem! An another interesting keynote speech was from Dr. B. K. Mohanty, a professor from the Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow. He talked about how to incorporate buyers 'anxiety and tranquility' stuffs in an 'online marketing system' (e-business). He emphasized that customers’ product preferences which are based on its attributes are normally expressed in linguistic or fuzzy terms. To make the customers’ preferences more realistic, in an e-business environment, their tendencies or inclination inherent in their preferences are articulated. These derived inclinations are further incorporated in the customers’ attribute preferences to discover the actual product preferences. The concept of tranquility and anxiety is introduced in order to identify the actual attribute wise preferences while selecting a product. He illustrated his idea by giving a numerical example related to purchase of a car. It was indeed a well delivered presentation that made the audience spellbound. Later, I joined the group of many enthusiastic audience in congratulating Prof. Mohanty for his remarkable keynote speech.

The afternoon session started with my presentation which, I believe, went okay. After attending few other interesting presentations, I decided to leave the conference hall.

I came outside with my Jordanian friend Adnan and sat for some time on the comforatable chairs in the hotel lobby in a bid to decide where to go next. We got to know that there was 'Phuket carnival 2008' going-on and it was the last day of it. The wall clock hit 5, and we decided to move outside and roam around the Patong beach area.

Phuket carnival is organized to celebrate the start of Phuket's busiest tourist season at the island's most voguish beachfront area of Patong. For six on-going days of this fun and vibrant festival, the Phuket Carnival was being celebrated around Patong Beach from 15-20 December 2008. Visitors were entertained by fancy parades, firework displays and street performances. One could also participate in the beach volleyball or football games or various water sport competitions as well as in a mini-marathon.

It was the last day of the carnival. The spectacular parades were being held and the scenes were mesmerizing. The well lit-up walking street with arrays of food and souvenir stalls, art exhibits, stage shows and other cultural performances were adding a thrill to the superb atmosphere. The stage performances lasted almost till midnight.

We indeed enjoyed the carnival activities. While walking along the beach area, I observed that there were several Indian, Pakistani as well as other country's restaurants lined up on both sides of the road. My choice was to have the dinner at an Indian restaurant but my friend however, had another idea. Finally we agreed to take the dinner at a Pakistani restaurant named 'Ali Baba Restaurant'. However, taste of the food was close to one from the Indian cuisine. Adnan too liked the spicy curry!

It was quite late when we got back to the hotel. On the way, we saw many decorated Christmas trees in front of hotels, restaurants & bars and other buildings. After all, Christmas was just over couple of days ahead! We had done enough of walking that day/night and I was feeling extremely tired. We said 'Good night!' to each other before departing to our rooms. I went to bed soon, but not before making few phone calls, which is one of my regular habits, to my family. Thanks for coming all the way down to this point. Hope to see you again with rest of my tour diary!

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Basanta Gautam on December 29, 2008 at 10:27 AM said...

Thanks for sharing your journey! Enjoyed it.

Bhola on December 29, 2008 at 11:13 AM said...

Nice allotment!

Alok said...

Loved the way you have described the activities! And yes, I know your approach towards a new person at new place: I admire your capability to make friends even in short encounters. I think it's good to have this quality. Thanks for giving a brief info of the interesting keynote speeches. also happy to hear that your presentation went fine. I bet you will always excel as you have shown in past.
At last, thanks for the Phuket carnival info. pictures are nice too. keep it up!

Sumiran on December 29, 2008 at 5:11 PM said...

Happy to know your interesting trips. I always love the scene around the beach area.Thanks for the detailed stuffs u shared.

उजेली on December 30, 2008 at 8:38 AM said...

i found your journey very interesting to read !! thanks for sharing such a wonderful trip.

badri on December 30, 2008 at 1:33 PM said...

Nice photographs!!
Thanks for sharing your journey!


Anonymous said...

Thank you all for your encouraging remarks. And wish you all a very happy and prosperous new year 2009!

बिमल गिरी on January 2, 2009 at 6:30 PM said...

Deependra jee Namaskar.
Nice photographs.
Happy New Year 2009 to u n your family.

Anonymous said...

Bimaljee, Namaskar! I wish you a very happy and prosperous New Year 2009! & welcome to this blog!

B.K on August 11, 2010 at 1:42 PM said...

Dear Jhaji ,

I just saw the comments and the photograph. Very good and most interesting.

BK mohanty
IIM Lucknow

Anonymous said...

Thank you Sir for dropping by and leaving your thoughts. I really feel honored.

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