YOG Workforce Appreciation Party@Universal Studios Singapore

As a sign of appreciation and to appease the volunteer workforce who had sacrificed their time and delicate palate during the Games, the organising committee has thrown in another chunk of expenses into the miscellaneous account of the controversial budget. I’m not complaining since I pay my taxes and let the CPF transfer a fifth of my measly income to oblivion. It would be perfect if the party was held on a weekend but I guess it might have been much cheaper to book the amusement park on weekday night.

I met the fellow volunteer LY at the iconic Universal Studios fountain after an eventful 1 hr of waiting for a bus that operates on weekends only. I was really excited and memories of Tokyo Disneyland raised my expectations. In reality, it was more like Genting Highlands on an island. Starving, we settled for American burgers at the nearest feeding ground, Mel’s Diner. The burgers were lip-smackingly good and juicy. After we had our fill, we headed to the streets where we saw people in purple polo shirts and a lone Charlie Chaplin. Where’s Betty Boop or Shrek?! For Chrissakes you could at least give us Merly and Lyo…

The best rides were the ones that made both of us scream our lungs out. The one that tops the decibel meter would have to be the Revenge of the Mummy attraction. It really felt like we were in the set of the movie with its towering mock statues of Anubis and other Egyptian deities and flaming torches. The queue stretched through endless winding passageways and it didn’t seem quite worth a 20 min wait for a 2 min ride. The sudden backward jerks, dips, scorching flames and hair-raising speeds made up for it.

The next one was in Farfaraway where we are treated to a 4D movie experience. We screamed when Donkey sneezed and we felt a wet spray onto our faces. The third one would have to be Jurassic Park’s Pteradactyl flight ride where our legs are left dangling in the air as we are swung around. As the carriage climbed up to the air and ready to swing to the right, we heard the guy who is facing the front swear the F-word. That’s our cue to scream and hold onto dear life. Perhaps its a blessing in disguise to sit facing backwards and not knowing where we are heading…

In 3 hours, we covered almost 80% of the attractions. By the time we got to the entrance, it was clogged by a sea of purple. The volunteers were queueing to receive the goodie bags which contains a towel, memorial CD, brochures, a pin badge, a Universal Studios key chain and a pen. By the time we got our goodie bags, the last train had left and we had no choice but to head to the taxi stand to queue some more. The good thing is there is a snaking line of taxis queueing to get in too.

I have nothing much to complain about since it’s free and I had an enjoyable time with my fellow volunteer. If I’d paid S$75 to get in, my response and choice of words would be totally different. I’m sure you know what I mean.

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