Spooktacular 2013

This morning my dad told me the newspaper said that Spooktacular is the most well-organised event of the year. I didn't know whether to laugh or to cry. For I have volunteered for only 20+ events, I am in no position to speak, but even Joey who has done 100+ events before, says this is the worst event he has ever participated in.

All the training that they provided were a total waste of my time. Especially the full-dress rehearsal, where we were told to come at 12pm, but until I left at 7pm, we had spent 5hrs chit-chatting, with nothing productive done in between except for the collection of t-shirts and punch cards. They did the same briefing for us twice. I don't know why once wasn't enough. And even the briefing was a total waste of time, because on the actual day that we reported, everything was done over again. And deployment was done all over again, so whatever I had learnt about my trail was scrapped, and I had to learn everything from scratch.

I was quite upset about the full-dress rehearsal not only because it was a total waste of my precious 5hrs, it was also because I was only told of the full-dress rehearsal like 4 days before, and I had to clear out my schedule for it. And then 4hrs before the event I was told that the timing was changed from 2pm to 12nn. Then I had to scrap out another of my plans, so that I could go there to stone. They could have told us in advance what date they wanted, so if I had anything planned, it would have been my fault. And if they decided that it was 2pm, please don't change the time so suddenly! My time is not for them to plan, it is for me to use. Imagine I set the alarm at 12nn so that I could reach sentosa at 2pm. Then by the time I wake up, it would all have been too late.

Also, about the emails. Whatever email I receive, Joey will not have received. And whatever he receives, I will not. What is wrong with their system? I mean, it would be even better if they totally miss out my email address, because then it would be attributed to the simple fact that someone was left out. But telling me that my email was not left out but I didn't receive everything? There's something grossly wrong there.

Then yesterday, which was the first event day, was also the media day, where media personnel and guests were invited. I thought it was quite funny that because the bulk of the people were invited guests, they were all fast-pass holders, and in the end, the fast-pass queue ended up longer than the normal queue, so normal guests were actually at an advantage haha.

The first problem of yesterday was that the locker couldn't be locked. So I had nowhere to keep my laptop and had to carry it around. It's a Friday evening, so I guess they should have been more understanding of students who take their after-school hours off to help out.

Then there was no dinner. What happened to {meals provided}? I admit having waited for Joey, that we were both late and that maybe was why there was no food left for us. But guess what! When I asked those who arrived on time (2pm was the reporting time), they told me that the last meal they had was at 2+pm, and no snacks or dinner was provided after that. And they starved til 2am in the morn. And what have they been doing since 2+pm til 6pm before we went to standby? Nothing, just sitting around like the last time. I know that the makeup artists and ghosts have to arrive early, for the makeup and all, and it takes really long for one ghost to be ready, so it is only right that they all come early and sit around. But why do Queue Managers need to come so early? Not like they will be given anything to do.

Then in the middle of the night, there was a downpour. Volunteers were not provided with wet-weather instructions or ponchos. And my laptop was caught in the rain. Thanks Joey for bringing it to a safer place for me. I say {safer place} because it wasn't that safe either. I think volunteers should have been provided with ponchos because then they could have been out in the rain helping to direct the crowd and all instead of needing to seek shelter themselves. I know some of the girls were pretty happy they didn't have work to do when it started to rain, but I'm not one of those who are there in hope of doing nothing for CIP hours. I want to volunteer, and I want to help. Getting myself caught in the rain and needing to seek shelter shouldn't be what I was doing. I should have been helping the crowds.

Talking about that, I was only told what I had to do, and nothing else. So when guests asked me about directions and what activities there were or anything else outside of my jobscope, which was to ask people to cross the bridge in groups, I could answer none of them. Proves how bad their briefing is. They should at least have done a mass briefing on all the important pointers and general stuff so that volunteers can be shuffled around without too much extra work to be done. All these volunteers only know what they have to do, you can't ask them anything else because they know nothing.

Joey actually wanted to leave early cos he really couldn't stand the event anymore. See how bad that is. Though I insisted that we at least finish the day off first because running off halfway will cause greater chaos than there alr is. I feel so responsible haha.

I have a lot of other grievances but I think this is as much as I shall disclose. I am sorely disappointed at such a volunteering experience, I think now that even my most hated Nike Run volunteer experience has become not so bad in comparison.  But do you know how bad that has to be that it can even beat Nike Run at being the worst? So now, tell me, what is the most well-organised event of the year?

Kudos to the bus service that sent us all the way home. Really appreciate that. I think that is one of the things other organisations can learn from.

The best thing I learnt from all this, is that good examples are always taken for granted. Because something is so good, I am usually unable to pinpoint to what I am happy with. But bad examples are always the other way round. It is so easy to find fault with every single thing. And that's where I know that next time, an organisation does something nice for their volunteers, I shall be grateful. Grateful that the timetable is packed, and there is always things planned for us to do; grateful that we get volunteer welfare packs; grateful for the poncho which I always throw away; grateful for the clear and comprehensible briefings; grateful for every little thing that I may not have noticed before. I'm sorry that Sentosa Spooktacular had to become the bad example, since I was really looking forwards to the event.

On a side note, I saw Eddric at the event yesterday! ^_^