Pearl of the Orient – III

Woke up feeling all energised from the night’s laughters. After a hearty breakfast, I set out to continue exploring the street in Penang.

iceball

penang4

penanglane

penang1

penang

I alighted few stops away so I would walk a longer way to just burn my breakfast to fulfil my other food desire – Roti Bakar (toast) with half boiled eggs at the famous Roti Bakar Hutton Lane.

huttonlane6

Buttery toast that melts in your mouth and perfectly half boiled eggs. Yummmmm

huttonlane5

huttonlane4

Pieces of art on the walls.

huttonlane1

My friend recommended the Camera Museum. There was no one else so I had a personal tour. Impressive collection!

museum

I took the bus to the beach too but didn’t alight as it was raining heavily. So no photos! But because of the HOHOwe beach route, I met 2 friends from UK and US. I spent most of the time with the British man who has been staying in various countries like Bahrain, Iran and currently, in Chiangmai.

He was looking around for a place to stay When he asked for my age, he said “Well, I’m glad I am older than you are. You have a tougher life than I did at your age. People stopped communicating. They only look down on their phones.”

Hunger kicks in again for late lunch. I was disappointed that Sup Kambing Hameed Restaurant was closed throughout my stay. I was tired of eating rice so I knew I had to have this Butter Naan with tandoori chicken served with mint sauce. This was at Hutton Lane too.

naan

I think like most travellers, I walked the whole of Georgetown. The next trip, I hope that I will be able to taste the Sup Kambing and explore the city at night. I heard the night market serves great food too! And I will definitely hop on their public buses instead.

The solo trip was surprisingly therapeutic. I had the me time I’ve been yearning for. Walking through Georgetown reminds me of my younger days walking from Arab Street to Mustafa Centre, discovering good food.  Though I must admit, eating is best with company.

Most importantly, thanks to a soulmate’s reminder, zikir kept me occupied and safe in His remembrance. A 10-minute walk from St Giles to HOHO bus stop is a few hundred selawat. I reflected on the countless times of just doing and thinking nothing back at home when I can gain more credits from zikir. May I make that a habit!

Pearl of the Orient – II

Started off the day with a good breakfast at the hotel for only RM30. They even serve sushi for breakfast!

20170429_083012-001There are other far cheaper options but I decided to ride on the Hop On Hop Off bus to head to Penang Hill. A touristy thing to do huh? My friend who knows me well had warned me I’ll be bored up there. Yuppppp. I was. Went up in the funicular to a foggy view of Penang.

dscf4833-001

dscf4836-002

I had a good walk after that around Little India area and Chinatown. The highlight was Masjid Kapitan Keling. Unfortunately, no one at the counter bothered to share the history of the mosque with me. They allowed me to enter the men’s praying area, but inside I was told to leave.

DSCF4848-001DSCF4853-001DSCF4854-001

DSCF4851-001

I ventured a bit to see the famous street arts. I was really impressed! A policeman asked me while I was snapping a photo of a street art “Adik, gambar ni masuk majalah ya?”  (Sis, is this for a magazine?) I laughed and replied that it’s for my own magazine. He thought I was some photographer for a magazine. Thanks Fuji XT1 you make me look like a pro! Hahaha.

Desktop1

Desktop2.jpgI had to end my day earlier too as I was going to meet my friend, Sonia, whom I’ve not met for almost 10 years! We had an awesome dinner at Nurul Ikan Bakar and great catchup with her and her 2 heroes too. Skipping lunch was worth it!

Desktop3.jpg

 

Pearl of the Orient – I

Been wanting to explore and discover the good food in Penang for the longest time. Trip to Penang with friends or families got cancelled and postponed a few times. So when I saw the air ticket was only S$60+ on Air Asia, I knew I had to grab it! Nearer to the trip, I was a bit nervous though. My ex GM assured me that I will be fine. So off I went on 26 April with just a backpack and with lots of tips from friends (including reminders – continue your zikir, don’t forget your Ayatul Kursi, etc)

I took the airport taxi to the hotel and was greeted with a Salam by the driver. “Seems like a great start to the trip, insyaAllah.” I thought to myself.

The Wembley, just across 1st Avenue Mall and Jen Hotel. I love the room and amenities. Prayer mat nicely hung at the wardrobe. Most importantly, clean and comfortable bed! Read my review on Tripadvisor.

hotel

After a short rest, I walked to Jalan Penang which took me about 15 minutes. First thing I see was the famous Chendol, judging from its long queue.

dscf4807-001

dscf4804-001

Next on my list is another must-go, Line Clear, for my Nasi Kandar. That was my late lunch and early dinner.

dscf4793-001

To me, it was just alright – rice with lots of gravy and dishes for you to choose from. Reminded me of Marhaba at Geylang where I can get equally awesome Indian rice with curry and teh tarik.

lineclear

They insisted I posed for a photo with the huge fish heads!

dscf4797-001

I was down with flu so I decided to end the day early before the long day begins tomorrow. Treated myself to a good Thai foot reflexology at 1st Avenue Mall before a good night’s sleep.

KL to Putrajaya

An overdue post on the RIS Convention in Putrajaya. Of many firsts – first time in Putrajaya, not staying in KL City and seeking knowledge in Malaysia and not taking photos in the hotel. Hehe. No regrets Alhamdulillah.

From KLIA2 to KL Sentral (RM55 for the KLIA Ekspress) onward to Tarbush, my favourite restaurant. I brought Dawn around Bukit Bintang before we left for Putrajaya by cab (RM70). A Hindu driver, a history buff who believes in goodness in all religions and the hereafter. We had an interesting conversation throughout the ride. He was patient despite being lost, stopping and approaching strangers along the way for directions.

Check in at The Everly Hotel barely took 5 minutes. Alhamdulillah it was a comfortable sized room, with heavenly bed and good shower. After Maghrib, we went to Allamanda Shopping Centre which is just 3 minutes away, for dinner. How convenient!  But that was the only time we had at the mall. Didn’t even have time for my Starbucks and that yummy looking Roti John I eyed on the first night. Boohoo.

See my hotel review on Tripadvisor here!

The next day, we took a cab from the hotel to Putrajaya International Convention Centre (PICC) (RM25-RM30) after the scrumptious breakfast. There was a long queue for the security and ticketing. But amazed by the operations and the friendly volunteers and staff.

And so our two-full day convention (10am to 10pm) begins!

Food Odyssey 

14352210_554039824797998_3511360422345165795_o

With the RM rate going at RM3 against S$1, Johor Bahru (JB), the nearest Malaysian city, has been crowded with Singaporeans.

The record breaking journey I took via bus to JB including immigration clearance was 4 hours. In the past, it usually takes an hour or 1.5hours even on a weekend. I knew I had to take the train for the next trip instead of the bus. It’s only 5 minutes and immigration counters are only for the train commuters.  Plus point, the officers are more friendly 🙂

And so I did. I took leave on a weekday and bought return train tickets weeks in advance via http://www.easybook.com . For weekend tickets, you probably need to book more than a month. We had to however change our e-ticket printout to the KTM stub. I didn’t quite understand but well, better than queuing up for hours.

10.05am arrived in JB. First foodie stop – Salahuddin Bakery, for cream horns! This bakery is located at Jalan Dhoby, the little India in JB.

When we arrived, there was already a queue for their curry puffs and buns, and other assorted breads! Even my cream horns were depleting fast.

 

We wanted to fill our empty tummies with chicken chop at IT Roo but it opens at noon on weekdays. So we walked back to Komtar for Thai food at the recently opened Boat Noodles. I’ve been to the one about half hour drive from immigration (see pic).

Thai Ice Tea was refreshing. The noodles, priced at RM1.90, was only 3 spoonfuls of course. Not a fan of their noodles. But their Basil Chicken with Rice is yum!

We went back to IT Roo…curious about this famous chicken chop. Service was pretty fast. Besides chicken cutlet and chicken chop, they serve local food fare like kaya toast, hor fun and fried rice. Hmmm the chicken cutlet was alright for me.

We had an awesome tea break and chat at Chaiwalla & Co.

The staff are friendly and helpful to this first timer. They have quite a good range of drinks and you can create your own concoction with preferred sugar level too. I enjoyed every sip of the hot Thai Tea.I’m in love with their simple clean logo and packaging!

 

 

We “tapau” (takeaway) Fat Boy Burger. Spent RM71 at this burger joint for 2 double beef burgers with beef strips and eggs. It’s worth paying that much cos it’s really one juicy beef patty. You can tell from the weight!

We are already planning to bring the nieces and nephews here to JB during the school holidays!

Took the 7pm train and arrive home at 7.30pm. 🙂 now I really hope flight to KL is cheap cos I’m yearning for some Tarbush!

*too lazy to add seekers odyssey trademark on JB photos.