<bgsound src="http://www.ijigg.com/songs/V2BFBCGCPAD" > My Big Big Adventure: July 2006

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Farewell: Fedelia, Stephen & Chee Hooi

Yesterday, was having a farewell dinner cum karaoke at Galaxy Subang.

There were fourteen of us: Andrew, June, Fedelia, Stephen, Me, Chee Hooi, Shin Ling (Chee Hooi's cousin), Stephanie & Janina (Chee Hooi's twin cousins from Germany), Eng Teng, Victor, Evan, Toh and Michelle (the birthday girl).

Singing our hearts out is one thing, the gong-to-miss-you-guys is another. The farewell was purposedly organised by June and Andrew for Chee Hooi (who will be following her beloved husband to Melbourne; for Stephen who will be starting a new job in London; and of course our chatter box cum cutie, Fedelia, who will be based permanently in Kuching.

Really going to miss you guys! Farewell my dear friends, and we shall meet again soon, real soon!

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Old Friends Gathering: Karaoke & Dinner, 25/7/2006

My dear friend, Kok Yung, has come back from Austin for a holiday. With his request for a karaoke session (looks like he enjoyed it a year ago), I have arranged a singing session at The Curve Red Box Karaoke. Knowing that Hui Ling (my dear friend who sat beside me during my high school year) would be coming with an Opera singer (his name is Chee Shen), so does my friend, Fedelia, the singing marathon finished with a high note.

Since we had the karaoke in the afternoon, I have also initiated a dinner session with our other working friends, namely Woei Ming, Yan-Jun and Tow Guan, at vegetarian restaurant at Kelana Jaya (Yi Xin Yuan, next to Giant, Kelana Jaya). It was a fun fulfilling dinner, as everyone is catching up with old times and updates from their life and work, and of course getting know a new friend (a.k.a. the Opera singer, Chee Shen). The highlight of our dinner ends with a sneak peak of celebrating our 10th year anniversary in 2008. (more info to come) Looks like this small gathering of seven went well with success.

I am so grateful to all who turned up for the session (including Chee Wei for a brief visit). Thank you very much and will look forward to seeing you guys soon! Lots of cheers and hugs~

Friday, July 21, 2006

Chee Hooi's & Sean's Wedding: 16 July 2006

It was a touching moment to see a dear friend getting married on this wonderful Sunday. The transition of a little girl turning into a princess is beyod imaginable.

The garden wedding matrimony was simple, yet so beautiful that I almost cried with joy.

It's the best wedding dinner for the bride ang groom. The most touching moment of that night was Sean's father's speech to his son. The blessings and also the welcoming note to invite his new daughter-in-law to the family. So touching and so loving. From then, I know Chee Hooi is now in good hands, not only with Sean, but also the family. Chee Hooi, you are so blessed with happiness! I am happy for you.

It's great to see familiar faces, friends that I have not been in touch for sometime, or to catch up on old times. Exciting to know that Andrew attracted a fan of little girl too, which I teased him of marrying a younger girl in his life. Lots of laughter drew around, and it was something I long awaited and miss upon.

Congratulations Chee Hooi and Sean! May happiness be with you both always!

Sunday, July 16, 2006

My Kota Kinabalu Trip: 10-15 July 2006

Five members of the whole trip at Yayasan Sabah:
(from left) Aunty Wong, me, brother, mom, Yin Foong

July, one of the hottest month and the least holiday month. Time to get myself packed and relaxed at this beautiful place of Sabah which I have fond memories of. This time round, I went with my mom, brother and a friend, Yin Foong, who are all first-time visitors, to this beautiful land below the wind.

We have touched down at Kota Kinabalu airport at 0930 on 10th July. The journey started with a warm greeting from Aunty Wong (my mom's ex-colleague during their koperasi years). Thanks to her warm hospitality at her cosy home, we were able to share so many laughter and things we share in common.

Aunty Wong is a very unassuming and happy-go-lucky person who loves to share her passion, her cooking, her laughter, and of course her charm. She is around 64 years old, but a very strong person as she climbed Mt Kinabalu every year & walk around the hill at Kota Kinabalu almost every evening.

Kota Kinabalu, a city surrounded by lush mountains and also scenic seafront. I have fallen in love with this place and this was my third visit here. I don't seem to get tired of going to Sabah all the time. There are so many things to explore though a small city with so many mountains and sea, instead of its small yet diverse population.

During our short trip to Kota Kinabalu, we have visited numerous places: Kinabalu Park, Poring hot spring, Manukan Island, Bukit Bendera observation deck overlooking Pulau Gaya, Tenom town via two-hour local train-ride, Tun Fuad Stephens Park, Nabaru Tamu, city tour, seafood galore, Pasar Besar or my bottled chillies and kuih cincin, and souvenirs shopping.

Kinabalu Park
I did not have the privilge to climb Malaysia's tallest mountain, Mt Kinabalu (4095 m height) due to the pack schedule from the operator, and of course my lack of stamina-practice. We went there after our Poring hotspring visit, which was quite late into the evening around 6 pm. The cool air started to fill the place, and I could feel the chill while walking there. Lush area filled with beautiful flora and fauna (I heard birds chirping). Not much to explore though. Will surely make a trip there again, and of course, the mountain.

Poring Hot Spring

It is located at the far end of Kota Kinabalu Park. Entrance fee is RM 3. There are 41m high, 187m long canopy walk, which we didn't try as RM 3 is needed just to walk there. Not something we have in mind. Looking at the price for the foreigner is more astonishing. RM 5 entrance fee at the door, canopy walk, another RM 5, camera charges RM5, and video charges RM 30. Ridiculous charges to thrifty Malaysians like us. We just headed to Ethnobotanical garden, where it houses numerous types of natural herbs; and the Kerunyit waterfalls, before dipping ourselves into hot tub of sulphuric water which took ages to fill the tub.

The mountain water flowing down from the waterfall is crystal clear and of course icy-cold that you will start to shiver if soaked for too long. Fishlets were there swimming around my feet, nimbling away my dead skin cell, a form of food supply apart from the moss gathered around the smooth stones.

Manukan Island
One of the five islands of the protected marine national parks of Taman Tunku Abdul Rahman, which has the most beautiful open sea and of course, coral-laid shorelines with colourful fishes swimming along. It occupies 4,929 hectares of both land and sea. The other four islands are Gaya, Sulug, Sapi and Mamutik This beautiful island was filled with Europeans, Japaneses and Koreans, nonetheless of our local. We went snorkelling, searching for beautiful coral reeves, and swimming alongside with colorful fishes in all shapes and sizes. Most surprisingly, I saw a beautiful blue-coloured, black striped sea snake. It was fatally beautiful to look at; after marvelled at its beauty and its speedy swimming along the corals for like two minutes, I began to run for my life to safety. Scary but exciting indeed. After enough of sun-tan, got ourselves a sumptious buffet lunch filled with seafood, dong guan bihun (rice noodle) soup, BBQ lamb, squid, prawns, steamed crab and corn, sauteed potatoes, fried rice and noodles, salad and of course juicy fruits and ice-cream potong. For a price of RM60, very worth it. I was too full until I was lazy to move. Burnt face with a full stomach, sounds like me.

Bukit Bendera Observation Deck
Bukit Bendera observation deck is the original location of Kota Kinabalu. Standing high up on the observation deck, the beautiful seafront overlooks to Pulau Gaya and of course Sutera Harbour. Straight down, the original two-main-streets town turned four-main-streets town within 20 years. The old-fashioned buildings are still visible, mixed with modern designed skyscrappers and shopping malls.

Tenom via 2-hour Slow Train

Tenom is a small town located in the valley. The area is accessible by car, but most commonly locals, Muruts natives especially, utilised the rail service to reach the place with a mere RM 2.75 per trip from Beaufort. It is a small town, famous for its fruits cultivation and also coffee plantation. We bought some juicy fruits and also coffee powder and beans as souvenirs from Fatt Choi coffee brewery house. On the train ride, I managed to take a picture for the native children on board. Lovely indeed, especially looking at the smiles of these innocent young lads.

Tun Fuad Stephens Park
Kota Kinabalu folks spend their leisure time walking at the park in the evening. Tun Fuad Stephens Park is one of the favourite spots. We went there for a nature walk in the evening. There, you could see people of ages, starting to climb the steep steps, to the top of the hill. Because of my big fat body, I made it up there but with much effort. However, it was worth it as I managed to view the majestic Mount Kinabalu and of course the beautiful sunset along the horizon.

Seafood Galore
Going to Sabah, it would be a sin not to take a bite of their seafood. The price is ridiculously cheap and you can sunk your teeth into prawns-only-meal almost everyday.

So many places to explore, so few words to describe it. You have to come see for yourself of these wonderful places.

I have my share of fun traveling to this part of the country. Not only it was fun-filled excitement, but I got to meet with new faces to share laughter with. I just can't wait to revisit this place again in the future!

Monday, July 03, 2006

東京ノート演劇 1.7.2006