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Catching Up on TV : The West Wing Season 1

Published by on January 23, 2015

So after finishing up with Jack Bauer’s 24 (read about my reviews here), I was wondering what TV show to catch up on. I was googling up on ‘Greatest TV shows of all time’, and had narrowed down a shortlist like ‘Band of Brothers’, ‘The Sopranos’ etc.

As usual, Boone came to my rescue. what about The West Wing? Bingo! I was soon on way watching.

Before starting on the show, I had a rough idea that the show is a drama on the life of the President. I assumed it was a serious drama, with heavy issues the President faces in real life. But after a few episodes, I realized, it is more of a dramedy (as much as I dislike that word), or drama with comedic moments. Kind of like Ally McBeal, or Suits.

Anyway, on to the review of the first season, starting with the pilot episode. I thought it was clever for them to talk about the President the entire episode, but not show him right until the last scene. And when President Bartlett finally makes an appearance, man, what an entrance.

The West Wing is about the daily lives of the 6 White House senior staff and the Democrat President. The supporting cast includes their assistants and the First Lady. Everyone talks fast, and is incredibly witty. Although all 7 stars get equal camera time, my two favourite characters are Josh Lyman (Bradley Whitford) and Sam Seabourne (Rob Lowe). In fact, my favourite parts of the show are the ‘walk-and-talk’ scenes between Lyman and his assistant, Donna. Their witty repartee is TV gold. How come my real-life assistant in my office isn’t so funny? She spend most of the time shopping online and gossiping on the phone.

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The season ending cliffhanger is slightly out of character for the show with its high drama, but its good nonetheless.

I loved the first season. So much so I wanted to write about it as soon as I finished the watching this morning. Let’s see how season 2 fares.

My Very First Dog

Published by on January 17, 2015

There’s a quote going around FB and Pinterest about raising dogs. It goes something like “He might only be here for a part of your life but for him, you are his whole life.”

I’ve had 2 dogs in my life while growing up. They were part of my life, and for them, I was their entire lives. The very first of the 2 dogs, I got him when I was only 5 years old. I know this for certain because my dad took a picture of my sister holding him in her arms, the puppy was only a few weeks old. And my mom scratched the date on back of the photograph.

I remember the day. we reached my grandmother’s house in Melaka for our usual weekend visit, only to find a littler of 5 pups on the porch. Her dog had given birth. All them were alike (obviously), incredibly cute, and black as midnight. In later years, my dog would grow to have a thick coat of black, glossy fur, no doubt helped by a diet of rich and unhealthy food.

We took one pup, my cousin staying with grandmother kept one, and my rich aunt (then living in Kuantan) took one, the other 2 given away. I remember on the drive back home to Muar, I was thinking of a name for my pup, I was deciding between the only 2 dog names I knew – Scooby and Muttley. No surprise I went for the former. In later years when I watched American sitcoms, I was surprised how they named their dogs with human names like Fred or Roger.

So from 5 years old on, I lived and grew up with my faithful dog. he was everything you’d expect in a guard dog. He never barked unnecessarily , but was suitably fierce to suspicious people outside the gate. He never growled at us (except the one time my grandfather tried to move his dinner bowl while he was eating). He never disturbed the neighbourhood cats (unlike my other, later dog) and attacked pests and intruding vermin. One time a giant monitor lizard entered the house, and my Scooby fearless bit the body. I bet he was puzzled why his powerful jaw and sharp teeth couldn’t puncture the lizard’s leathery skin.

When he wasn’t a big dog, we’d take him to Melaka with us during the long year end school holiday when we stayed at grandmother’s house, when he’d spend his time outside his brother’s kennel looking at this other dog who looked strangely like him. His brother, named Balone (don’t ask me why) didn’t live for many years, though.

Scooby was a Doberman and Labrador mix, but he looked more Labrador. Once he outgrew his frisky puppy age, he wasn’t much of an active dog. Most of the he’d spend snoozing in at the back of the house or in the white wooden kennel we got for him. If we spoke to him, he’d give me this look that said “is this REALLY worth my time?”

But in later years, Scooby grew sick, immobile and had many visits to the vet. My mom loved dogs too, and spent a lot of money for his medicine. I always joked to my friends that my mom took better care of my dog than me, coz if ever was sick, all my mom said was “go and take Panadol lah, who asked you to stay up so late?!” At one point I had to forced Scooby to swallow his tablets, and hold him still while my mom dropped hydrogen peroxide onto his open sores.

Anyway, shortly after I left for uni, my dog died. he was 14 years old. I read somewhere dogs don’t usually live past 10 years, so I guess Scooby led a good life. he always at food from our table, was well taken care of, bathed often, and never scolded.

I sometimes wonder if it is true that all dogs DO go to heaven.

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There’s an awesome webcomic by ‘Cheer Up, Emo Kid’ from a few years ago, about his dog, read it.

Remembering My First Day in University

Published by on January 7, 2015

I reminisce about the darndest things while driving home. Today, i remembered about my first day in uni, 24 years ago. Good lord, has it been that long?

It was early July, only my dad came with me. My grandfather had just passed away, so my mom did not make the 3 hour trip down south. It was only my second time there, the first was for the interview a couple of months earlier. UTM back then was not part of UPU, they had their own arcane / clandestine method of selecting applicants.

I remember it was a quiet journey, i was unhappy and bitter with my dad for a number of things, some trivial, some not. I know getting accepted into a good uni is a fantastic thing, but back then i had a lot of issues with my parents.

Registration for the residential lodging was done on the first day, academic registration was done later in the week during orientation. I don’t remember much about the process, except that it was very organized – moving from counter to counter within the two interconnected mess halls. There was probably lots of forms to fill and documents to file. I distinctively remembered opening a bank account, too. There was only 1 bank on campus. There was even a counter taking registrations for PALAPES (military cadets). HAH, like hell i’m going to join something as regimented as that.

The place was filled with freshmen, with their parents and families. Chinese, malay, indian, Kadazans, Ibans, and all. Everyone was happy. I notice i was the only one who came without my entire family. Every freshman brought their own pail, just like me. I guess i had to learn this whole “hand wash” thing i heard so much about. Amongst the crowd of freshman, were some of the best friends id make in uni, like Dave and Ray, but i’d only meet them days later.

After the centralized registrations, we were directed to our rooms. They wrote it down on a piece of paper for me – L23A102B. I was fortunate to get the smallest of the 3 types of dorms. L23 is like a small semi-detached house, one side numbered A, the other B. Each side had 4 rooms on the ground floor, a small living room with settees, an empty kitchen (no cooking was allowed) and the toilet. upstairs, there were two rooms, and a small store. Mine room was upstairs facing the back.

When i reached my room, my roommate was already there unpacking. The door was ajar, but i tried my key to confirm it was my room. It clicked, and he smiled and said “roommates.”

“Can you speak mandarin?”

“Not so good”, i said. Good thing he could speak good English then.

Then when all the registrations were done, my dad left for home and i was alone in uni.

L23A had 8 freshman, plus one arrogant senior. Of the freshmen, most were my coursemates, except 2 guys doing Diploma in Civil Engineering, and two doing Aeronautical. There were 5 Chinese guys, 2 affable Malay blokes and one Sabahan (who once was locked out of his room with only his towel on). We all actually got along fine, despite coming from vastly different backgrounds.

Anyway back to that first day. We were free until dinner, where we had to were our batik complimentary (cheap) batik shirt and gather at the hall. Dinner was rice, beef and veg (with side of horrendous pineapple soup) served in one of those trays with compartments. Then we had to listen to hours of long boring ceramahs about rules and growing up etc. Little did we know it was a preview of what we would endure for the rest of our orientation week.

At past one in the morning we slumped to bed, exhausted and asleep in seconds.

In retrospect, university was a great experience for me, getting to meet good and lifelong friends in those 5 years. They say college or university is where you rediscover yourself, how very true. But without getting ahead of myself, that, was my first day in uni.

My 2014 in 9 Points

Published by on December 31, 2014

Today is the last day of 2014, and keeping with tradition, I’m doing a review my past year in 9 points. To understand why only 9 (and not 10) you have to go back to the first of this yearly tradition to find out why. The past editions are in the following links:

2013
2012
2011
2010
2009
2008

So before the year ends and the fireworks go off, let’s start:

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1. Annus Horribilis in Malaysian Aviation

No matter how isolated or disconnected you want to be from our mainstream news, no Malaysian can escape the horror of MH370, MH17 and QZ8501. What on earth happened? For MH17, it shadows the fateful flight KAL 007 in 1983. As for the other two, we may never know what happened.

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2. Lombok

Our annual family trip was to Lombok (read about it here). Wonderful experience, but our last big holiday for some time.

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3. World Cup!

What a World Cup, eh? Compared to the last few ones, this one I enjoyed a lot. I think everyone loved this world cup, except for the Brazilians, and to a certain extent, their neighbours, Argentina.

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4. Slave to the Grind

Work was / is still work. This year I thought I’d let some work go, especially with a full team on board, but these things never work that day. But still, we achieve a few important milestones for the company.

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5. Sketch up

On my art pursuits, I knew that this year it would be difficult to keep up the momentum of my oil and watercolour painting, with the demands of my job and other pursuits. So this year I kept a sketchbook in the office to sketch during my lunch hour when there’s peace and quiet. Still going strong, only problem is finding the inspiration in an insipid environment…

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6. Home Furnishing Spending Spree

Towards the last quarter of the year, we started preparing for the move to the new house, so it was a lot of visits the fairs – Perfect Livin’, HomeDec, Perfect Lifestyle, and lots of furniture stores and warehouses. Not to mention the spending…

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7. Road Trips!

This was definitely the year for road trips! Besides the usual 1,000km CNY travels, we did Ipoh and Seremban / Port Dickson as a family. Cell group retreat was in Avani, Sepang. We also did Bentong, Sekinchan, JPO, Morib / Tg. Sepat / Bukit Malawati with friends. Life is always better with good company.

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8. 24 Marathon

Beside the usual movie and TV show binge watching (I like this new term), I decided to catch up on all 9 seasons of Jack Bauer’s 24, since I’ve been hearing so much about it but have never watch it before. What started out as something to pass the time while waiting for the early morning World Cup matches, the marathon stretch until mid December for more than 5 months.

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9. And finally, still more books

At the start of 2014, I scaled down on the my reading target, preferring to read only books that I really wanted to. But 18-book target was met with 3 more months to go, so the target was raised to 21, then 24 and finally 30. Still a far cry from the 50 books I did back in 2012 and 2011.

My Favourite Films of 2014

Published by on December 30, 2014

I watch a lot of movies. An AWFUL lot, I’d say. For the last 10 years, I’ve watched almost the whole Top 100 movies every year as listed on Box Office Mojo, plus many other indie flicks that don’t make the list. Well, almost all, except the horror movies and some foreign language films.

Which make me wonder why I’ve never done a year end list like this.

But anyway. I’m sure you’ve all watched all the blockbusters – Guardians of the Galaxy, Transformers: Age of Extinction, Interstellar, etc. Don’t get me wrong, i like them too, but these following ones are my the standouts for me, movies that keep me thinking about them and then ones i’ll watch again and again in the years to come.

Just a note, some of these were actually released last year, but was only available (for ME) to watch this year, so lets not be a stickler for the rules.

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The Grand Budapest Hotel

Without a doubt, my favourite movie this year. Wes Anderson only makes a certain kind of movies, but how they are, its difficult to explain. Its quirky, colourful, humourous, star-studded, and enjoyable through and through. I think its Anderson’s best movie after Moonrise Kingdom. Do yourself a favour, watch it, and you can thank me later.

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Blue Jasmine

A close second is Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine starring Cate Blanchett. I have not watched many of Allen’s films, but this one made me seek out some of his older stuff. A breezy, witty movie (although a times a little irritating), with an excellent supporting cast (Andrew Dice Clay!). This movie won Blanchett an Oscar, and it is easy to see why.

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Edge of Tomorrow

Every summer brings their share of action blockbusters, the pick of the crop this year is Tom Cruise’s Edge of Tomorrow. the storyline is familiar – a futuristic Groundhog Day where humans battle strange tentacled aliens. But Cruise’s journey – reliving the same day over and over again, but everyday moving a little further and further into the unknown – is gripping and filled with twists. Emily Blunt, who plays the war hero, is an added delight to the movie.

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Nebraska

this is a black and white movie about an old man on a slow, rambling road trip across the country with his son. Yes, most people will be bored to tears, but I find it endearing – in a quirky, poignant way. I hope I get to own a pickup truck when I’m old and nearly senile, too.

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The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

While his fellow Brat Pack buddies are reduced to making duds like The Internship, This is 40 and Delivery Man, Ben Stiller returns to form with this remake. its funny, snappy and has an awesome scene with Kristen Wiig singing Bowie’s Space Oddity (go on, search for it on youtube). Plus Stiller gets whacked in the face with a branch.

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The Monuments Men

This started off really well – sort of like those old time heist movies with an ensemble of motley characters. Better still, instead of money or gold, they are retrieving classical art from the retreating Nazi, something that resonates with me. Throw into the mix George Clooney, Matt Damon, John Goodman and the Hugh Bonneville (father from Downton Abbey). But, for all the things going for it, I felt the movie let me down halfway through. It lost it momentum, and felt disjointed. But as a whole, it was a memorable movie for me. Kinda sad for all the art pieces the Nazis destroyed, though.

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The Giver

Books (and movies based on books) for young adults are all the rage now. I was just talking to Patrick the other day about how when WE were young adults back then, there were hardly any books targeted at our age group, it was either for kids, or regular fiction for adults. Given that there were a deluge of movies based on YA books this year – Divergent, Mockingjay, Maze Runner, etc – The Giver is somewhat similar but much better. Its similarities are evident – a dystopian future where children’s futures are determined at an early age by a group of all-powerful, shadowy adults. But Jeff Bridges, playing the titular ‘Giver’, gives (heh) a fantastic performance, rather than just being a token adult character. While the resolution of the plot is somewhat lacking in panache, it eschews some of the cliches of the genre. Bonus for the movie – try to spot Taylor Swift’s cameo.

Idiot Box Marathon – 9 Seasons of Jack Bauer and 24 (Part Three)

Published by on December 25, 2014

Read the first two parts here.
Part 1
Part 2

I thought I’d finish the review in the previous post, but it was late and I got tired, plus the post was too long.

Season 8

Storyline

This is the season most people thought would be the last, including the producers, I think. It centers on a President of an unnamed Mid-East country trying to sign a peace treaty in the UN, but is betrayed by his own brother and men. President Taylor has problems of her own, as she gets manipulated by Charles Logan. Renee Walker returns, gets killed and Jack goes ballistic, killing spree. there’s some side story starring Freddie Prinze, Jr. and that girl from Battlestar Galactica.

My thoughts
i’ll remember this as the Anil Kapoor season. Wow, what a hairdo. His hair deserves an Emmy all by itself. He did okay, (Anil Kapoor, not his hair) but the it was obvious that the overall production value of this season seems better, move movie like. Gone we the dark, grainy look of earlier seasons. the final part where Jack exacts revenge was a little over the top, but enjoyable nonetheless. Re Agent Walker, what a basketcase. Glad to see her gone. Had the show ended here, it would have okay for me, despite Jack disappearing into sunset incognito again. But no… they made ANOTHER season…

24: Live Another Day

Storyline
And so we come to the last season to date, and probably the last in the series, unless Kiefer Sutherland wants to make another USD$20 million. The good thing was that this was only 12 episodes / hours, making it very compact and focused. Heller is now President, Audrey is back, both in London. Stephen Frey plays the PM, can’t take the comedian seriously as a drama actor. A family of terrorist take over US drones and threaten to blow up targets in London. And Jack saves the day again.

My thoughts
While this was a consistent season, the whole thing felt like it was made to capitalize on the UK market. this season stands out for 3 reasons – Jack tossing Margot Al-Harazi out the window (good way to make sure villains never come back again), beheading Cheng Zhi (ditto about coming back) and the resolution of Audrey Raines. Finally! Jack, that woman is bad for you, k?

So it comes to an end. Browsing the Net, 24 is consistently listed in the Top 10 or 20 Greatest TV shows of All time, but of course not near the top. I’d say, yeah, it deserves to be up there, its compelling storytelling is groundbreaking. But being on terrestrial TV restricts it in ways compared to cable networks like HBO or Showtime. Also the nature of the realtime gimmick limits the plot, we can see that some storylines are repeating throughout the seasons. Considering that this show started more than 12 years ago, I guess a lot of you wont remember much of the details of the earlier season. Even for me, watching it all in 5 months, the storylines blurs together at times.

So, done and dusted. What’s next? I’m starting on West Wing. Until then, Merry Christmas.

Idiot Box Marathon – 9 Seasons of Jack Bauer and 24 (Part Two)

Published by on December 23, 2014

Well, I’ve finally finished, all 8 seasons of backlogged shows, and even finished the latest (and probably last?) season of 24. Time to continue this review, the first part can be read here, where i review the first 4 seasons.

So here we go with the rest:

Season 5

Storyline –
Well, it started out with more of the same, Jack Bauer living incognito somewhere, and the hapless Charles Logan still president. But suddenly come the hammerblow – ex-president David Palmer and Michelle Dessler is killed. After that, its the usual diet of terrorists, kidnappings, nerve gas, etc.

My thoughts –
Despite the shock of seeing President Palmer and Michelle murdered, the season slowed down a bit in the middle third, just like it did in the past few seasons. But i do agree with the general consensus, this was one of the best seasons. And i kind of liked Logan’s wife – the boozy alcoholic. As for the cliffhanger, well, i thought it was rather unrealistic.

Season 6

Storyline –
A series of terror attacks prompts President Wayne Palmer to bring Jack Bauer home and surrender him to the terrorists. Most of the season sees president Palmer battling with his enemies and traitors in his administration, while Jack runs around tracking suitcase nukes. Also introduced are Jack’s father and brother.

My thoughts –
Really, they made Wayne Palmer president? His vice president, Noah Daniels, while portrayed as a villain, was better suited to lead. Secondly, jack went from being tortured in China for 18 months, to super-agent again in a single day. So Jack is like Superman, then. And of course, there Jack’s brother and father. Wow, meeting them really explains why Jack is so screwed up. Also, the revelation about Audrey was pretty startling.

24: Redemption

Season 7 is previewed by a TV movie about Jack Bauer being Father Teresa somewhere in Africa and get dozens of locals killed.

Season 7

Storyline –
Sooo, season seven. Nearing the end, now. Things are different now, CTU is disbanded, Jack is defending himself in a congressional hearing, and the FBI is now fighting the terrorists now. And Tony Almeida plays villain, then anti-hero, and finally villain again.

My thoughts-
Rather average season, but with 2 stand out moments – bill Buchanan dies. The other was the best quote in the entire series:

President Matobo: “Are you also with the FBI?”
Chloe : “Me? No, I’m a stay at home mom.”

Absolutely priceless.
Then theres a cliffhanger with Jack dying… Really, who are they fooling? Of course he doesn’t.

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To be concluded.

Short Road Trip to Johor Premium Outlets (JPO)

Published by on December 21, 2014

We’ve heard of Johor Premium Outlets (JPO) for the longest time, but never visited. after all, my family is hardly the kind of people who buys the kind of fashion (or prices) they offer. But a recent conversation with friends prompted this road trip. Sometimes, a road trip is more for the company and fellowship than the actual destination.

So last Saturday we packed up 5 adults and 2 kids and 1 toddler into the Toyota Rush and started off from Puchong. Despite some maneuvering around Putrajaya to avoid a inexplicable jam along the SKVE, we managed to reach our first pit stop in Tangkak.

Tangkak

Believe it or not, after growing up 18 years in Muar, I think this my first time in Tangkak town, not counting the few times I passed by en route to Gunung Ledang as a youth. We stopped by a clinic to pick up some drops for Caylee, and for an early lunch. What’s there to eat Tangkak? I mean, other than beef noodles? Nothing, really. So went for the obvious.

The dispenser lady at the clinic recommended 2 options for beef noodles, we went for more famous one.

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The noodles are quite good, a notch better than their branches here in the Klang Valley, but in the Tangkak they don’t any other choices aside from beef.

JPO

Tangkak looks to be a nice town, laidback, maybe larger than Kampar. Then we drove on to JPO.

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We reached JPO in early afternoon, and while there weren’t many people there, the carpark was almost full.

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If you are not familiar with this place, its an open concept mall like They have in Australia, but with covered connections. Its not really big, but if you’re a serious shopper with lots of cash to burn, you can easily spend a day here. There is a wide range of brands here from the most expensive – Armani, Coach (where you have to line up to get in, they only allow 5 customers at a time). The not so expensive brands are the most here – Bonia, Swatch, Tissot, Kipling, Braun Buffel, etc. There are also affordable brands, where we spent most of our time, like Nike, Adidas, Esprit and Cotton On. At the time, there was a sale going on, most store were having up to 70%.

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Personally, the best deal was at Nike. Running shoes start from RM79, but i bought the RM169 model.

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For food there is limited choice, but they have a food court here.

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I think all in all both families spent almost RM1,000 in total. I think we spent the most in Saccor, Kipling and Nike.

Dinner

By the time we finished it was almost 7pm, we went for dinner before checking in our hotel. Didn’t want to go far, since our hotel was in nearby Senai, the only other place i know of the duck rice and noodles in Skudai.

It was much better than i remember it – last time i was here was 1996 when my family visited me in uni before graduating.

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Dinner came up to RM80, not including the otak-otak.

Hotel Le Grandeur

By the time we check in to our hotel, Le Grandeur, it was way past dark and we were super tired, so we didn’t get a good look at the premise.

But next morning for breakfast, we were pleasantly surprised. Le grandeur isn’t a new hotel, more than 10 years old, but its still quite good. Thanks for John for getting us good rates.

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Johor Bahru

After a swim and checkout, we drove down to JB. Ive only been back here once in the past 18 years, and the that was 10 years ago. JB has changed a lot, but the old city is still pretty much same.
Danga Bay was disappointing, reclamation has ruined it, and the city was caught in a horrendous jam due to works along Wong Ah Fook.

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After a few rounds trying to find Holy Light church, we gave up and decided to head back. A pit stop at McDonalds for lunch, and then a long, long drive back to the city.

So ended another road trip. Maybe this was too short, rushed and tiring, but still fulfilling and great company. Looking forward to the next road trip, then.

Cuti-cuti Malaysia in Port Dickson & Seremban Again

Published by on December 9, 2014

This year’s family holiday, we went back to Port Dickson. In line with our austerity drive to have local holidays these next few years, 2 months ago I booked 3 nights in Grand Lexis PD Executive Pool Villas for RM2000 (room can fit 4 pax). I thought wow, that’s even cheaper than last year’s price! I only found out why when I checked in. RM2000 is for room only, no breakfast. this slight inconvenience turned out to be a good thing for us, we saved the money and spent more time in the room and pool rather than having to rush for breakfast every morning.

But anyway.

Friday morning we took a slow drive to Seremban first. the good thing about nearby cuti-cuti Malaysia – can take a slow drive there, no need to rush to airport or wake up early to beat traffic jams. First on the itinerary was Beef Noodles in the Seremban wet market. We first tried it last year, loved it so much, wanted to try it again.

this time we tried the other stall in the wet market, a few stalls down from the famous one. Regretfully it didn’t taste as great. there and then we decided to come back the next day or Sunday.

after the early brunch, the next thing on our touristy itinerary was – SIEW PAU! Oh sure, you’ll say its overrated, can buy anywhere in KL, etc. But what else is there to do in Seremban? Besides, I kinda like siew pau, especially the ones my mom used to buy from my hometown Muar.

Last year we tried Asia Siew Pau, supposed the best in town, it was really good. this time, we opted for the more famous Empayar Siew Pau. You know, the huge place you can see next to the Plus Highway. The building is huge, but largely deserted. I guess they planned it to be a mall with ample parking, but no one moved there, except the siew pau store. but they’ve recently also opened a restaurant right in front of the siew pau shop specializing in Lukut Curry Chicken Bun.

Empayar, just like Asia, sells more than siew pau – they also sell other confectionary like kaya kok, curry puffs, lou por peng (wife biscuit) etc. So my take? Both are equally good, up to a certain level I can’t really tell the difference between the two.

From Seremban its a slow drive to Grand Lexis. We stayed in the Executive Pool Villa, but this was a slightly smaller unit from last years, on the upside, our room was really near the carpark (although still above the water).

We didn’t leave the hotel until lunch the next day, we spent all our time napping and swimming.

Lunch the next day Saturday was back to Seremban to try the original beef noodles in the market. Then with nothing much else to do, we drove to Seremban 2 (very nice township) to visit Aeon Jusco. the place, apparently the most happening mall in Seremban now, is very much like Station 18 in Ipoh. Walking around took us just 45 mins, so sat in Starbucks drinking coffee and McDonald’s ice-cream (Old Town Coffee was so packed we couldn’t get a table). After getting some snacks and bread from Jusco, back to hotel for swim and dinner of cup noodles.

And then we didn’t leave the hotel again until dinner on Sunday, which was at this forgettable restaurant opposite Giant in Lukut.

On Monday after checking out, we have dinner at the famous Lucky Bun King (curry chicken bun) in Lukut before heading home.

Short, cheap holidays, but great memories with the family.

Thai Fish Farm, Jalan Ampang – Ulu Langat

Published by on November 3, 2014

After relocating to the city for close to 20 years, we’ve only begun to really explore the extent and fringes of Klang Valley. For most part, we’ve stuck around the southern and western parts of Greater KL (this is the new, preferred term for ‘Klang Valley’, apparently). But on Saturday, we really went across the city, from Puchong to Ulu Langat to Thai Fish Farm.

It was supposed to be a day at Pulau Ketam, then when that didn’t happen, we thought of going to Selangor Pewter factory visit, and when even that didn’t pan out, I decided to go for an early dinner in Thai Fish Farm, some place I’ve read a few reviews about.

Getting here from PJ / Puchong is far but not difficult, made easier if you have Waze. Try coming earlier before sunset to see the place before dark. the final descent to the restaurant is really steep, not for the faint of heart.

Sorry for the dodgy photos. From my Galaxy S4. No time to take photos. Nom nom nom.

Free ample parking.
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Something fishy going on.
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Oysters.
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Very serene atmosphere.
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Fish food is available at RM2 per pack.
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Main course.

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Floating stage with a live performance by a one man band.

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Mango sticky rice!
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I think the food is definitely good, plus service was excellent by the Thai staff (although being early must have helped). Price came up to about RM266 for 5 adults and 3 kids. We had fish cooked in 2 different ways, plus 4 large oysters so I reckon it was good value considering the quality of food. But a lot of the dishes were spicy Thai style, so if you are going with kids who can’t take spicy there are limited choices. Will definitely come back again, very soon.

On the way back we stopped by Ampang Lookout point. a spectacular view of the city.
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After that we rounded it up with ice-cream and coffee at Inside Scoop in Damansara Jaya.
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Its days like these that make you realize that life can get pretty good.

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