War across the borders!

1 05 2006

When? 30 April 2006, Where? A Famosa Resort in Melaka, What? Paintball war against RAC Kota Melaka.

230 feet per second. That’s how fast the paintball bullet is shot at you. 3 bullets can be shot dead on before you even blink! Shot at close range, you can suffer fron second degree burns and if you don’t have a mask, pray hard that your eyes don’t get shot into cos you’d definitely go blind.

But were we scared? Nooo… In fact, we took the challenge all the way to Melaka to face off against RAC Kota Melaka in a “friendly” war.

Leaving bright and not-so-early (umm, because one of the cars got lost in Salak South… don’t ask why) on a Sunday morning, we were lucky enough to have a smooth fast journey down. A quick fueling of energy at neighboring town Tampin with some super cheap and hearty mee soup and we were off like troops marching in to face our enemy picturing all sorts of strategy (including the main one of using Neeraj as the sacrificial decoy). Spurred on by the coincidental radio airplay of “cowboy” song “Blaze of Glory” by Bon Jovi.

The Kota Melaka-ians were waiting when we got there. In the blazing hot sun. With our spirits raring to go, we were however first required to listen to our marshall and instructor Andy’s safety instructions and the rules of the games. Names also had to be picked and it had to be befitting of the brave soldiers going onto the battlefield. So we had the Kota Melaka teams of Peanut & Butter and the KL teams of Durian and 24D (err, actually it was supposed to be D24 which we realised later passing by the durian stall… 24D sounds like measurements for something else 😛 ).

With our safety mask and gear on, it was time for the first two rounds – Peanuts vs Durian and Butter vs 24D. The aim of this round was to capture the flag. Boundary lines were drawn which meant you couldn’t be shot at point blank. The only catch was whoever went into the open flag area in the middle to capture the flag and bring it back to home ground, could be fired at by his opponents but can’t shoot back. Peanuts won the game really fast as President Wee of Kota Melaka sprinted and grabbed the flag while missing a shot directly at his butt. 24D was quick to learn from the mistakes of their allies Durian and won the second round with Tseng Yip evading flying bullets to get the flag.

The third and fourth round was however more possibly injury inducing as it was an elimination game where the last man standing wins. There were NO boundaries so your enemies could shoot you up close. But of course, the much awaited finale against Peanuts and 24D arrived soon enough. Our team’s strategy was to let the bravado boys go up to the frontlines while the girls played defence from way back, safely in the shelter posts. Or so we thought as our bravado boys were too bravado and got killed off very quickly, leaving three girls (Jennifer, Shreen & Kavita) standing against a troop of Peanuts. Shreen and I were ganged up at one post while Jennifer was in the next one. From all sides bullets rained on us as the Peanuts spread out and circled. One particularly climatic moment was when Jennifer was caught smack in the middle of cross fire as we tried to frantically cover her. She didn’t “survive”. So now it was down to a 3-2. One of us had to move from the post so Shreen decided to make the brave move. The tin can of our post was constantly rat-tat-tating with bullets being shot at both directions. The third guy was mysteriously missing. Seeing an opening, Shreen decided to make a run for it while I tried to give her cover. The point where she made it and got pulled out of the game because her bullets ran out I have no idea. Because suddenly I hear her shouting orders from OUTSIDE the battlefield… that meant I was the only one left for 24D… gulp!!! Of course, I tried to last as long as I could but imagine my surprise that one of the Peanuts Sujen had managed to get behind me. Thankfully the marshall called the game to a halt and declared the win to the Peanuts because I was clearly outnumbered and they had managed to take over our homeground. Sigh…
However, that was not the end of the story. Feeling the exhilaration of combat and the fact that I didn’t get a single shot on me… brave or should I say dumb little me volunteered for the extra round of 3 against 3 (because there were extra bullets). AND I was the only girl on the field against 3 guys from Kota Melaka and my comrades Neeraj & Tseng Yip… Of course, I decide to stick to my same strategy of not moving much and sticking at the backlines while the two boys went up front to attack. And guess what? The same scenario of the brave “dying” early and the “girl” left surrounded happened. And the two guys of Kota Melaka closed in on me and shot in close contact. Leaving me with injury to my arms, thigh and worse a direct shot at my throat.

So you see boys and girls… paintball can hurt. Although, I would still recommend you give it a try at least once for the experience. It’s just like jumping off a bridge with a tiny string tied to you and fighting rapids, its a total adrenaline rush. Which is probably why, at this moment with a bruise the size of a tennis ball on my arm, and a swelled up neck with my glasses hanging half broken and getting an anti tetanus shot & a round of antibiotics and anti inflammatory cream, I just walked out of the clinic with a big grin on my face. 🙂

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