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Once when we were young

Chinese New Year is a time for reunions.  I met up with my old classmates in Malacca on Monday night for dinner.  Some of them, I have not seen since Form 5 and yes, we were able to recognise each other.  Of course, it took some time before my brain picked up the signal from my memory bank and connected the names to the faces.  Here we are …….

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This fish came later, but we managed to finish it up.

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Outside the restaurant (I think it was in Banda Kaba) after dinner. 

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Thank you for being a friend

On 2 February 2009, Irene and I drove down to Malacca to meet up with Jen who is back here from Melbourne to visit her family for the Chinese New Year as well as to attend a relative’s wedding in Singapore.   We bunked in with Jen and her two children at the Mahkota Hotel Melaka.  She had booked a two room deluxe apartment and we had a comfortable stay there.
Mahkota Hotel Melaka

Mahkota Hotel Melaka

After unloading our bags into the apartment, we walked to Mahkota Parade which is right across the road from the hotel.  The mall was brightly decorated…
Inside Mahkota Parade

Inside Mahkota Parade

Little red lanterns

Little red lanterns

We went to the food court to have our late lunch.  I had chicken rice and so did Jen’s two children.  Irene had fried koay teow and Jen had some spicy chicken rice.  We also shared the popiah and ice kacang.  The ice kacang was delicious because of the “gula melaka”.

Popiah

Popiah

Ice kacang

Ice kacang

Jen and her kids did some shopping but the three of us were so engrossed in talking inside the shops that her kids disappeared on their own without our knowing.  Anyway, we then decided to go back to Mahkota Hotel to continue yakking.  Jen, Irene and I have been best friends since we were classmates from Form 3 to Form 5.  Even after we left school to pursue our further education and careers, we kept in touch through letters and in recent years through emails. 

That night, we joined our former classmates for dinner (that’s a story to be told in my next posting).  After dinner we continued yakking until nearly 1 a.m. before going to bed.

The next morning, after breakfast, we decided to explore the facilities at the hotel.  Jen had scouted around early in the morning and had done some work-out at the gym while Irene and I were still in bed. 

First off we went to the spa which was next to the swimming pool.  Both Irene and I didn’t bring our swimming suits so we thought we could try our luck by jumping into the spa pool with our shorts and t-shirts.  But luck was against us and the pool attendant said no, we couldn’t use the spa and that if we wanted we could use the kiddie pool.  So we left and tried our hand at the mini golf.  This was the first time that Irene and I held a golf stick and hit a golf ball.  My first hit sent the ball flying out of the mini golf course but after a few swings, it was okay.  Then we walked bare-footed on the reflexology path.  It was good but Irene gave it a skip.  We saw this model of a kampung house ….

Model of Malay kampung house

Model of Malay kampung house

 and trishaw…

Trishaw

Trishaw

After that we decided to explore outside the hotel.  We walked to the Jetty.  This jetty connects the Mahkota Hotel to the Holiday Inn. 

The Jetty connecting Mahkota Hotel and Holiday Inn

The Jetty connecting Mahkota Hotel and Holiday Inn

Holiday Inn

Holiday Inn

As we walked along the Jetty, we could see the Straits of Malacca.  It was almost mid-day but it looks hazy,  is the place polluted or what?  There are pubs, karaoke, cyber cafe, massage centre, cafes and shops along the Jetty.  It was quite deserted in the day time, maybe this place would come alive at night.

Straits of Malacca

Straits of Malacca

The Eye of Malacca is here now.  This ferris wheel used to be in Kuala Lumpur for one year before being relocated here.

Eye of Malacca

Eye of Malacca

Best friends forever… and thank you for being a friend, Irene and Jen.

Beck, Irene and Jen

Beck, Irene and Jen

A Chinese wedding dinner

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A couple of weeks ago, I attended a friend’s daughter’s wedding dinner at a five star hotel here.  A Chinese wedding dinner in Malaysia is usually an eight or nine course dinner, such as this…..

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I forgot to take a picture of one of the dishes which consisted of vegetables.   

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The younger generation nowadays prefer to serve red wine instead of brandy or whiskey at their wedding dinner.   Personally, I prefer the taste of red wine.   And as I look at the happy young newly-weds,  I can’t help but be reminded that age is catching up on me …. real fast!

Our friends Richard and Woon discovered a new eating haunt in Desa Aman Puri and we decided to join them for lunch at this 168 restaurant.  They serve only pan mee either individually like this.

panmee1

Or in a claypot for two persons.  There are more ingredients inside the claypot pan mee.  The cost is also higher. 

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The pan mee is nice, isn’t salty and probably doesn’t have much MSG in it.  This place is crowded during weekends and today we had to wait for our table.

The owner of this restaurant who is also the chef is a lady and near the cash register you can see a glamour photo of her hanging on the wall. 

Chili’s at 1 Utama

I was at 1 Utama today to celebrate a friend’s 51st birthday.   The place was not very crowded and it was nice and relaxing to walk around looking at all the Chinese New Year decoarations.  The movie theatre was full of young people, though. 

1u

We went to Chili’s restaurant to have lunch. 

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We had the fruit juices which was refillable.  Not bad.

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And we ordered the following dishes which was nice although we felt sleepy after eating all of it.  This beef dish comes with the bread and chopped vegetables.

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The food was nice and the service was excellent.  I like the way the waiters and waitresses came up to check on us to make sure that we had our drinks filled up and that we were enjoying our meal.

A time to renew old friendships

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Ah Loot and I went to KLCC Suria today to meet our friends for lunch.  The place was crowded with people, mostly foreigners and tourists.  There were some locals too shopping and spending some family time together.   We couldn’t decide where to go for lunch.  Two of our friends are lactose intolerant and one of them was also coughing badly.  Both Ah Loot and I can eat almost anything.  We walked around a while and finally decided that the food court was the best place to go since we can pick our own choice of food.  I chose this Bengal food consisting of naan, tandoori chicken, vegetables and dhall.  The taste was okay, the chicken was a bit tough.

bengal-food

Vicky chose nasi lemak  ……  I think she misses the nasi lemak when she’s in Mentakab.

nasi-lemak

Juliana chose the spaghetti.

spagetti

Ah Loot had chicken and wantan noodle.

wanton

For dessert, Ah Loot and I had the durian cendol whilst Vicky had something that looks like a Thai dessert.   After “makan”, we went to Vicky’s apartment for more chit-chat.  Since we hadn’t met in a long time, there was a lot of catching up to do.   Outside Vicky’s apartment, we could see the Petronas Twin Towers and the Ampang Elevated Highway (not sure if it is). 

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Receive a blessing

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This is a red packet containing money which all children look forward to receiving during Chinese New Year.  Unmarried people also receive this red packet from married people.