Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Book Collections

I love books! I love readings. I have been a keen reader since I was in school. My first memorable reading collections were the Enid Blyton series, the Hardy Boys, and Nancy Drews Series. One of my English teacher, Ms. Julie Kuek, used to encouraged me and she would bring a few of her own books for me to read. That was in my secondary school years...but then again, i was hooked on reading way before that. I remembered there were time when I was in primary schools my dad would leave me in the library (attached to his office, and the library staffs all knew my dad) if he was busy and didnt have time to send me straight home after school. I remembered I would either be talking to the staffs or sitting quietly reading in one corner...

This habit continues till today...during my uni days, I would go to the public library to borrow book...i can finish a paperback novel in 2-3 days if it was a exciting thriller! But nowadays, I don't have the time to indulge in this hobby of mine. I am busy most of the time so going to the library is a bit of a hassle. So, I end up buying more books than borrowing from the library....When I was in the UK, when i was skint, I would browse for book bargains at the charity shops or car boot sales ...very cheap books as well - I could easily get a novel for 50 pence!

Here's some of my book collection. These are only from one crate box...hehehe I have 2 more unopened boxes a lot more books scattered round the house. I have been meaning to get a bookshelf but up till now my books are still all over the place. Note to self: get a bookshelf soon!

My favourite collections: Alex Cross Series (James Patterson), Grisham's novels and Patricia Cornwell's book...

This is one of my favourite - easy reading - book "Princess Bride". This is my own copy - a farewell present from my best buddy, Angela... it is kind of fun and easy going, a fairy tale story of love with its obstacles and happy ending (of course!). I don't own many books of this favourites are crime thrillers, forensic detective works and mystery.

At the moment, I don't have time to read like I used to. But I always find ways to indulge and immerse myself in a good book...e.g. I always bring a book or two when I am travelling (plane ride can be boring without books!) or staying in below showed that I am reading everywhere (even at the poolside!)

Sunday, April 26, 2009

One boring sunday

I am so bored! I didn't do any marking today ...i just don't have the energy to do any mentally taxing activities. Plus i am so sad to be left alone here, whereas my family are all together in KL. I hate being alone..the weather did not help either. It was gloomy since noon, followed by heavy downpour and snatches of lightings! Yea, very depressing!

Now, I am catching up with the CSIs that I missed earlier in the week ...a shocker indeed! Grishom left CSI for love ...yeah, who would have thought that! I'm gonna miss watching this Grishom character's but from the snippet that I've seen, Lawrence Fishburn's character as Dr. Langston (???) is going to be a fun character to watch! Especially on how he would fit into the team.

Hope tomorrow is a better day - that's the understatement! coz i would be invigilating in the morning (meaning I have to be there before 8.30am) and then would have to go and pay my tax in Kuching....but at least, it wouldn't be another boring day ...fingers crossed!

Saturday, April 25, 2009 history

I created history today ...nothing major, mind you fact other people may even think that this is such an insignificant event. For for me, it is a huge deal...real huge deal ...i managed to pop open the engine top (alah, the front of the car - see how ignorant I was of the components of a car!!)....and re-fill the water for the wiper as well as the other water thingy! all by myself! With little instruction via the phone from my dad in KL ...neat huh! I now know which one is the water container for the wiper and the container for the engine ..and check this out, I also check the M-oil hahahaha first time in my life that i did it. I always rely on my dad and my cousin to do it for me. My dad is in KL (attending a wedding reception today! So jealous!) and my cousin is back in Sri Aman ...i had to do it myself!

I know it is such a small thing, but am really happy (and not to mention, proud) that I can do it ...yipeee ...pity, my brother and sister didn't see me...and there wasn't anyone else around to take photo....

Friday, April 24, 2009

My afternoon at the salon ...

I hate coming back to my empty house. Since my parents and my dear nephew are in Kl (only a week since I saw him, but seems like ages!), the house is noticably quiet, very empty, what i did in these situation is to delay going home...this is where it gets "dangerous".

The reason is that it could lead to window shopping and unnecessary spending! Just like what happenned today. I get off work a bit early today as i was sending moi lina to the airport. I dropped her off at 3.30pm. I was supposed to go for my monthly facial at Kose, but the beautician who always look after me was busy today (i'll go tomorrow at 2pm yeaaahhh). But rather than going straight home, i headed to my favourite salon at the 10th Miles...the intention was to get a hair wash (the cheapest one loh!) hahaha cheapskate ..or so i thought. I ended up with hair treatment (I told Anna I wanted the cheapest one available!), a hair trimming, hair wash, head and neck massage ...huhuhu that sets me back RM60....

But my head felt lighter now - emmmm maybe it's just a placebo effect, who knows ...but one thing about this "cheap" hair treatment cream is that it is not as good as the one that i often used. I love my fruity yogurt hair treatment cream - but that one alone costs RM100. It smells nice and fruity, and my hair will be smoother and just feel absolutely fabs. This cheap one that i used today is ok but didn't give the same level of satisfaction! Maybe it's the product ...or maybe it's just me ...again: placebo effect!

Note: no photos to accompany this posting (1) i was embarrased to take many pictures; (2) my mobile's battery kong when i was there - only took 2 pictures, and (3) the pictures made my face looks chubby so i decided not to put it up here! enough said, right?

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Nasi Ayam Penyek

When we were in Miri, my boss suggested that we try nasi ayam penyek at Awang Mahayan Cafe ..said it was recommended by one of his friends. So, our very first lunch, after going round the city since 9am, we headed to the Cafe. Was a bit disappointed when we didn't see nasi ayam penyek listed in the menu ...hehehe a friend asked, and was told that they called it nasi lalapan here instead hahaha ... hugh sigh of relief!

Result: I love it! the sambal is a bit spicy, but delicious. The rice and the chicken are hot, coz it's straight from the frying pan into our plate. The presentation is also nice ...would love to go to this place again if i am in Miri...but i can't remember the location though!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Rose Valley, Cameron Highlands

We went to the Rose Valley in Tringkap on our last day in Cameron Highlands. After lunch, we decided that we still have a few hours to spare before heading off to Kuala Lumpur. Hence, the trip to Rose Valley.

It is located a fair bit out of Brinchang. And on the way there, we saw lots of vegetable plots along the way. As well as a number of bee farms, strawberry farms and what not. The entrance fee for the Rose Valley is RM4 for an adult. Since my brother and his wife already went there before, they decided not to join us.

The roses are magnificient. Really breathtaking...with its vibrant colours. A real feast to the eyes. Different colours, shapes and species ...This garden also have other plants in different sections - e.g. cactus, daisy, pitcher plants and so on.

My dad taking a breather ...there are a few seatings available...

But the way the garden is designed, it sort of uncomfortable for me (with a baby on hand) and my mum to move around. The pathway is rather small and difficult for us to move freely. In addition it is designed in different layers, involving steep steps, uneven surfaces and several rusty railing which actually have come apart - quite dangerous for those who are unaware of it! It is not really suitable for anyone with a baby in tow or ailing person my mum. She loves roses but the steep steps defeated her ...she didn't really explored the place coz she can't climb to the higher location. Such a pity. Nonetheless, she quite enjoyed the little that she saw.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Tanah Rata: Places to eat

During our stay in Cameron Highlands, we had our meals in Tanah Rata. We did plan to eat at a restaurant in Brinchang but I can't remembered why we didn't go there.

Rossette Restaurant
Jalan Besar, Tanah Rata, Cameron Highlands

Had dinner here the first night in Cameron Highland. The environment looks cozy, the staff was polite. They serve western food and local food (i.e. rice, noodles) as well as steamboat. I had teriyaki beef (RM15), while Jane and my brother had roasted chicken (RM 12) and lamb chop (RM 15) respectively. My sister decided to have rice - with vege and cashew nuts (RM 8). To me, the food was ok. We also had thai fishcakes (RM 9) and prawn tomyam as appetizers. The fishcakes are small though. The main disappointment was that the tomyam have lots of prawns' head! not much of the prawn itself ...

Lamb Chop

Chicken and cashew nuts with vegetables

Yusuf Restoren

We had "banana leaves" lunch here. It was already 2.00pm when we arrived so the choices of of as very limited. They dont have any more fish curry we chose chicken (ayam madu), fried fish, and something else that I cannot remember. The staff/owner was also slow in serving us, and was often distracted by whats happenning round the restaurant, while taking our order. Definitely not a place i want to go again ...


I saw a KFC and Marrybrown here. Didn't see McDonald though ...but we didn't go to any of these fastfood establishments. With many restaurants and stalls around, we didnt look for any of these fastfood restaurant.


A lot of places offering steamboat meals. The ones that we saw that was always crowded (and a long queue outside and people clearly waiting for empty tables) is the Restoren Ferm Nyonya. Must be the popular one - coz like they said, if you want to choose a place to eat, go to a place where there is a huge crowd. Follow the crow :-)

Right next to Ferm Nyonya is the Mayflower Restaurant. Also offering steamboat. And the queue, again, was quite long. Mayflower offered three types of soup-based for the steamboat (1) chicken soup (RM12 per person), tomyam soup (also RM12) and half of both tomyam and chicken soup (RM 14 per person). Unlike the steamboat meals that I enjoyed in KL where we choose what we want from a buffet table, here it is more or less fixed. You'll get the prawns, squids, chicken, beef, crabsticks, fishballs, jellyfish, beancurds, eggs, noodles and bihun, and 9 types of vege ...My brother complained that he thought they should renamed it as "steamboat sayur" (vegetable steamboat) coz he prefer the buffet steamboat and the ability to choose what he want to eat.

Tea and scones

This is THE place for tea lovers and many places offer tea and scones. Just drop by at one of the shops. I only stopped at Bharat Tea Plantation on the way to Tanah Rata, so I wouldn't know how much or what sort of tea is being offered. The Olde Smokehouse does have tea and scones with devonshire cream in the menu. Again, i didnt try it coz i went to the lunch menu instead :-) At Bharat Tea Shop, we had Marsalla Tea -tea infussed with spices. My sister, dad and i enjoyed ours but mum and Jane didn't like its smell and taste. The scones was hot, and soft...very nice!

Ye Olde Smokehouse - Restaurant

I have covered this in my previous posting. A bit pricey - they serve breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as serving teas and scones. I dont know about the other time, but the lunch hour is from 12 noon to 2.30pm. The setting is nice and the garden is absolutely fabulous.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Ye Olde Smokehouse, Cameron Highlands

Dad has been talking about the Old Smokehouse since we were little. Everytime he saw a documentary or films with scenes in Cameron Highlands, he would talked about this. FYI, the Old Smokehouse is one of the earliest english country homes in this country, and in Cameron Highland. If I was not mistaken it was built in the late 1930s.

We all know how much he wanted to see the place, earlier this week, he got his wishes. On our last day at Cameron Highlands, we went there for lunch. This place is only open for the patrons, so in order to get in, one has to either be staying at the place (it's also called the Smokehouse Inn) or patronising the restaurant. We couldn't afford to stay there as the prices are well beyond our ranges - above RM400 per night. So, we opted for a less pricey option - by dining there instead. Mind you, we all think that the meals are also a bit pricey. For instance, whole spring chicken = RM49, mixed grills = RM68, fish & chips = RM50, Steak ranges between RM70-90 depending on the choice of meat. They also serve fish dishes like rainbow trout, salmon as well as the traditional english pie (steak pie, chicken & mushroom pie, which, if I am not mistaken costs above RM65). The cheapest dishes are salad (three types: ceaser salad, waldorf salad (i think) and CH green salad) which costs between RM25-30. And the list of desserts are marvelous - all of them are my favourite dish! They have creme brulee! But we didn't order any dessert that day ...we were all full from our generous portion of main courses. And that alone costs a fortune the way, they also serve teas and scones with devonshire cream as well - but i am not sure whether it is serves all day or just at certain time of the day.

Anyway, while waiting for them to cook our meals, we strolled around the garden. It was lovely! The weather also made us feel that we were somewhere in an English countryside rather than in Malaysia. Dad had a fun time strolling in the gardens, and entertaining his naugthy and hyper-active grandson. Mum, as usual, loves the flowers but as she was a bit tired, she spent more time inside with me and another grandson (the not-so-naugthy one).

The inside was also lovely, with its wooden beams, and collections of antiques stuffs. A cosy environment, with sofas and comfy chairs dotted round the place. And the staffs are also very friendly and polite.

We really took our time there, walking in the gardens, before and after the meal. We didn't realised that we actually spent nearly 3 hours there! The main thing is that everyone is happy, especially my dad. Now he can checked Ye Olde Smokehouse off his places of interests that he wants to see. And we are all glad that we shared those moments with him ..

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Family - you can't live without them

I am counting the days. Will be in KL soon, and before I know it, we will be going for our short break ...a first family hols in a long long time. The last time all of us were together were Christmas 2007 and before that was during my brtother's wedding in Dec 2004.

It is difficult for us to be at the same place together - in the 1990s was partly because I was never home - and when I did, my brother or my sister were not there. I was studying in the UK at the time, while my brother was in New Zealand. And my youngest sister was also all over the place - all in the name of education - first she was in KK, then to JB and finally in KL (till now). Because of this, we would really try to be together - usually during christmas, or gawai - but our career demands always interfere. Time together is very precious.

And, thanks to my sister in law, we are about to get together for a short break. We are taking mum and dad to Cameron Highlands. They have always expressed their interests in Cameron Highlands but somehow we never visit the place. Before this, before all of us are working, I think the opportunity to travel was there but my parents sacrified a lot because of us. They saved whatever they have for our education fund, instead of travelling, seeing places - and now, it is time for us to pay them back. I know that is not enough compared to their sacrifice, but I know it will make them happy. I know my dad is proud of all of us - and now that he has 2 handsome grandsons - he is feeling blessed to have us - and we are definitely blessed having them as our dad and mum.

Family is important to me. We can choose our friends, our spouse, but we cannot choose out family. For me, my family has always been there for me, through thick and thin ...and I hope I can do the same for them.

The great gift of family life is to be intimately acquainted with people you might never even introduce yourself to, had life not done it for you. ~Kendall Hailey, The Day I Became an Autodidact

Friday, April 3, 2009


Saw this shop when i was on my way to Kundang a few weeks ago ...saw the name! It's amazing ..."terus jadi (Immediately become) Mini Market " ...hehehehe magic huh? That's the reason why I insist we stop on the back way, just to get this pic I can share it with you guys....

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Song of the month

I just couldn't resist putting this lyrics here...hehehehe it has a special meaning to me and haslina (????)...don't ask, its a secret hehehehe. Something to do with Counter Number 3...hehehehe

Yang terlewatkan....

dimana kau selama ini
bidadari yang ku nanti
kenapa baru sekarang
kita dipertemukan

sesal kan tiada arti
karna semua tlah terjadi
kini kau tlah menjalani, du du du du du
sisa hidup dengannya

mungkin salahku melewatkanmu
tak mencarimu sepenuh hati
maafkan aku

kesalahanku melewatkanmu
hingga kau kini dengan yang lain
maafkan aku

tak berulang kembali
kau tak akan terlewati
segenap hati ku cari, du du du du du
dimana kau berada

repeat reff

walau ku terlambat
kau tetap yang terhebat
melihatmu, mendengarmu
kau lah yang terhebat