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Category: Travels

Project: Ipoh Revisit

I thought I was away from KL for far too long, stuck in the middle of the seas, sweating in the middle of the dust & noise of warehouses…

But just 5 days in for a pit stop in KL, & my heart & head & balls are screaming to get away for a break from KL!

So, just like back in those days in UTP when you felt like you are completely abandoned, lost & isolated in the gettos of Tronoh, we made the decision to execute Project: Ipoh Revisit. The goal? To conduct quality inspection on favourite makan places that were frequented & discovered back in uni days, in 1.5 days.

In actual fact, this revisit was long planned ever since we felt our feet drag away upon graduation, leaving behind the “old town”ess of Ipoh & the delightful stomach wonders this town offered. We just felt like we couldn’t wait anymore & decided to make it a spur-of-the-moment adventure. So we came up with a list of all the favourite mouth-watering food locations we always went to, & crammed all of them absurdly into the 1.5 days we had in hand. The only thing that was gonna stop us from devouring all in the “impossible” list was our lack of fitness & aging stomach.

Turns out these 2 factors were more than apparent during this trip. But let’s not lose focus here.

:: MOB TO IPOH ::

So, checklist needs to first be…well, checked. Empty stomachs – check. The best company in the world – triple-check. Comfortable clothes a.k.a. Quicksilver boardpants – check. Shades – check. Money – duh. Car in good condition – chec…oops, had to service the car in the morning before we departed. Uh oh, that’s gonna lose us a couple of hours of precious food-time! No worry, mintak extension sikit…catch-up plan is to drive faster lo.

& along for the journey, for the very first time, is the my newly purchased compact ultra-zoom Panasonic Lumix DMC TZ8!

I may be small but I can zoom your ass off

This dude is coming along for the ride to provide some visuals. At 12.1mpxls, 12x optical zoom & 16x digital zoom, this dude burned me for RM1180 together with an 8gb memory card.

Saturday morning, off we departed from the concretes of KL into the uneven ridiculously bumpy highway towards Ipoh.

:: UNPLANNED APPETIZER ::

As usual, we made a stop at the rather-packed Tapah rest house for bladder pressure release, but due to the blistering afternoon heat blessed upon us by the fireballness of the sun, the sight of Baskin Robbins hollering to us “What’s Your Favorite Flava?” was irresistible. So, first consumption of the day goes to Strawberry Cheesecake &…I forgot what was the other scoop she chose, but it’s something that is associated with chocolate & nuts.

What’s your favorite flava? Lai lai

Strawberry cheesecake…the best flavour by BR. Anyway, this tastes better than it looks, trust me. Total damage – RM14 something.

Before long, the familiar sights of Ipoh soon dawned upon us.

You know you are reaching when you see sights of caves!

Macam Sepet kan?

:: BRUNCH ::

First official Ipoh stop: Under the Tree! Okay, actually I have no idea what this shop is actually named but they sell stuff like fried beancurds & “yong tou fus” & stuff parked under a tree, so people seem to call it under the tree & we kinda stuck with it.

See the tree on the right? You gotta believe us that there is something about this place, seeing that we are willing to eat hot shit under a hot tree shading us from the hot sun

The freshest crispiest beancurds ever, these are fantastic. You may whallop the stuff just like that, or get a bowl of curry & choose to do the following: dip & eat, or soak & eat. Amount spent for this – RM6.90 (with dry noodles)

The mix-pork-internals porridge (that’s the best I can do with my translation, sorry) goes only for RM2.40 here, which is pretty good. But I still think Pusing’s the best

The drinks here are kinda at rip-off price, but we usually go for the Red Bean ice. Do note that next door to this tree-stall is another food court that has more structural concrete & integrity to it, & apparently they sell the same supplied “yong tou fu”s & all there too. However we still prefer the authentic feel of consuming fantastic sizzling fried beancurds under a tree.

Next on the impossible itinerary is a pit stop at this little shop called Funny Mountain for Tou Fu Fa & soya bean!

You may eat while sitting on the limited small benches & stools, or you may line your cars up & they will attend to you in the comfort of your car. For environmental & traffic purposes, I encourage you to just park your damn car & walk a little up the mountain that’s funny, you big fat cows

She claims it’s the best tou fu fa in the planet! (I really hope my translation isn’t as horrendous as it looks to me)

Now we had to find some time to waste while awaiting our stomach to complete its cycle of digestion & for our appetite to recover for the next meal, so we went to the most generally popular hangout place in Ipoh…Kinta City Jusco. Lolz.

Okay, we had no idea what to do aside from getting bored by the sight of similar-styled chicks & wankers, so it wasn’t long before we were spotted lining up for movie tickets. Since Toy Story 3 was full (aik, Ipoh ahbengsahlians watch Toy Story wan ka!), the only acceptable movie that had ticks was the Cruise-Diaz Knight & Day. I’m glad I decided this post was not going to touch on movie reviews…cause I myself was struggling to keep my night away from my day throughout the movie.

:: DINNER ::

Anyway, it was time for my personal main agenda for the whole revisit, the ridiculously delicious Pan Mee at Gunung Rapat!

Only now I realized this shop’s called Restoran Chung Wah

Don’t ask me for directions to this place cause I have no idea how to explain it in detail. Back in uni days we just said it was “somewhere near Suet Yeng’s house”. Now the thing I need to warn you guys about this place is, the food is great, but you gotta be prepared to wait for it. The usual timeline for the food to come is 30 minutes. Some of my friends even walked away after an hour of waiting. But us? We love this place, so it just had to be in the list. The uncle usually starts cooking at 6pm, so try to come at a suitable time, if not you are not gonna get a place to sit, or you might be waiting till 11. Oh, try to sit outside if you can get a place, cause the inside’s gonna get your ass baked to perfection before the food arrives.

Alan told us last time the standard waiting time is 30 minutes upon delivery of chopsticks

You may choose from the soup version…

But this is the real killer. Dry pan mee that comes with killer ikan bilis. Don’t fret, they also give you a bowl of soup with vegetables, meat balls & pork that’s so tender it’ll make you cry

Time to mix up the sauce that’s hidden underneath the noodles

Ready to be eaten! All this for RM3.20 per person – the serving’s a healthy portion I’m telling you!

I seriously do not know how to explain to you how amazing this pan mee is. The sauce is not salty, the soup has a lot of garlic but the taste is so neutral. It’s practically tasteless, so why the hell does it still taste so good? I’m no food expert, but I believe this boils down to the texture of the noodles. Guess this kind of explains why the uncle takes so long to prepare them. In this corner shop, aside from the pan mee there are also 2 other stalls. I suspect the stall that sells fried stuff (chicken, sausages, that kinda snacks) makes loads of profit from people who are too hungry while waiting for the pan mee.

Full & satisfied, there were 2 more spots to hit before bed, but we needed a rest so we decided to check into Impiana Casuarina first. Thanks to our big green company & corporate rates, the two of us have enjoyed the likes of Mandarin Oriental & Awana far too much we found ourselves unwilling to go any lower than Casuarina or Syuen in Ipoh. How times have changed. This is not a good thing!

:: SUPPER ::

The alarm to our snoozing rang at about 10pm. Grumpy & sleepy, we told ourselves that the impossible list is not impossible, so we freshened ourselves in a jiff & jetted off to supper locations. First up, Indulgence.

Don’t go to this place on Valentine’s. It’s madness, I heard. Like Puduraya

Now this place is cosy & really perfect for a long chat, but the meals are a little too pricey for what they offer, so I wouldn’t really recommend their main meals. The desserts however, are a different story. To be exact, we were only there for the Ultimate Brownie. No, I’m not exaggerating, that’s what they really named it. There are many brownies & cakes on display, but we only wanted one, we wanted the ultimate one.

It’s cosy I’m telling you. Lots of cushions like Delicious

Hold on a sec, WTF is this? The serving of the Ultimate Brownie this time around was absolutely pathetic. Back a few years, they served it all warm without the top being melted off. This time however, it looks like something that came out of the waiter’s ass

Thankfully it still tasted as lusciously good as ever. We ordered a 2nd one, however this time we made sure it bore more similarity to the previous ones we loved, so we demanded from the waiter to accompany the brownie with loads of warm chocolate syrup & cream with chocolate powder. They used to decorate the syrups nicely too, this time around the serving & decoration is just plan disappointing. Didn’t anyone tell them that in these kinda places, the food’s gotta look as good as it tastes too?

This is what I usually order, Choco Mellow! Hot chocolate with a marshmellow & chocolate sliced rolls to fool around with. This goes for RM15, while the brownies cost RM7 each

I kid you not when I claim that Indulgence’s Ultimate brownie is the best brownie in Malaysia. Though these little desirable brownies have failed to meet the ecstasy I felt devouring them the very first time years ago, I always leave the Indulgence bungalow satisfied & my teeth a little more magnetic to ants.

Then it was time for the real supper. No Ipoh trip is complete without Lou Wong Taugeh Chicken!

Those guys who work here are pretty noisy & horny by the way

1 person tauge & noodles + 2 person chicken portion goes for around RM14

Best accompanied with my favourite, dry hor fun, you may also choose soup hor fun or chicken rice. Opposite Lou Wong is Onn Kee, which also serves taugeh chicken. They are good too, but I’ve always preferred the extra oiliness & saltiness in Lou Wong’s recipe.

Feeling all bloated & unhealthy, it was time to hit the pillows & rejuvenate for tomorrow.

:: BREAKFAST ::

Day 2 morning found us dragging our feet unwillingly towards the dullness of Casuarina’s buffet breakfast spread. If we had a choice we would gone to Kledang for the dim sum, but since this was included in our bill…well, cuba dulu lo.

What do you see?

Let’s just say the buffet spread did not feel like a spread, more like a splat. Not many choices, & the eggs (scrambled, mata kerbau) tasted suspiciously funny.

:: LUNCH ::

The thought of having lunch at one of our favourite spots kept us alive. Nam Heong here we come!

Now the locals have told us that Nam Heong & the opposite shops are the original shops way back in those days that made white coffee popular. The place is usually packed, so be prepared to share tables with strangers or sit at the back alleys

In our opinion, Nam Heong’s white coffee is a little milkier while the opposite shop’s white coffee has a thicker coffee taste. An iced glass serving goes for RM1.50, or you can tapao for RM1.70 each

But the real reason we always come back to Nam Heong is not only for the white coffee, but the food they offer here. I personally adore the Char Kuey Tiau. But the serving’s very small, so you may want to decide on the “big” option

Nam Heong’s dim sum, though offering very few choices, is delectable. My better half loves those egg tarts…

…& these little buggers. Unfortunately I have no idea how to translate what they are called into Roman letters

That boy on the right has grown up! He used to be this short little rascal who cheekily took orders for kuey tiau & gave me a face when I ordered wrongly last time

Word of advice, you may want to watch where you park your car & where you walk when you come to Nam Heong. Lots of birds happily ready to deploy bombs around the area

That place certainly brought the smile back to our faces.

:: DEMOB & RETURN TO PURGATORY ::

It wasn’t long before we realized we could not check the other spots in our impossible list, as we had to snap back to reality & drive back to face the Mondayness of work. Among the missed spots include our favourite late night dim sum in Kledang, Bercham steam boat & grill, fish head noodles, salted chicken, Menglembu honey chicken, Pusing kuihs & mix-pork-internals porridge, & Starbucks…joking.

I wish we could just make a U-turn

Total amount spent on all the food? RM110. That’s 1.5 days worth of Ipoh food equivalent to a Chili’s meal for two. Interesting…especially when you gotta note that we didn’t really go for a completely budget-food-trip (almost half of that RM110 is contributed by Indulgence & Baskin desserts) so you can about see what the rest is worth.

The revisit project was exhausting, but absolutely satisfying, memorable & worth-it. All in all, the food still tasted as good as ever, exactly as we remembered & wanted to remember them (minus the disappointing service at Indulgence). Left us a little bloated & reeling from indigestion though, haha. In a way, I’ve gotta say I owe UTP a big thanks for this. Because if my university was not located in such a bloody forsaken spot surrounded by trees, monkeys, wild boars & cows, I would not have been introduced to the many small delights of Ipoh.

& honestly, thank God for the wonderful food offerings of Ipoh, because during the many times I’ve been in Ipoh in the past 5 years, I felt like shooting the person who claimed “Ipoh chicks are freaking hot” in the balls.

Last of all, I leave you with a word of advice if you are to give the best makan places of Ipoh a try. Bring lots of tissues (cause none of the above places offer any except Indulgence), & be prepared to sweat!

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From Stingrays to Sepang

KV just found out 3 of his female uni friends purchased new laptops to replace their spoilt ones just very recently. Which kinda demonstrates that something is quite not right with our fairer sex, since we guys tax our laptops waa-a-a-y more than the other species, yet ours are still working fine. Go figure. Yes, I am gladly, & justifiably, stereotyping! Even met a girl who never thought of the basic need to install an antivirus program, teeheee.

PPPPPIIIIIIIIAAAAAAAAOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWW!!!!

Frankly, I have no idea how to construct a Formula One car sound with roman letters, but it sure was mind-blowing!

It all started when Ed the Meche Nerd & I the Meche Stud formed a partnership to participate in UTP’s Formula One Innovative Design Contest. What we had to do was to come up with our own conceptual design of a Formula One car using a design engineering software (CATIA/AutoCAD) & justify our design innovations. So, deciding to go all-out in our creative flair (since Ed is a CATIA maestro, making it a software-design reality would be quite possible) while taking a heck load of liberties with FiA’s rules & regulations, we designed with implementation of some radical concepts such as a covered driver cockpit, lowered engine air intake, oval sidepods, extended rear side bodies that sweep above the rear wheels, a 3-blade 2008-inspired front wing, & we topped it all off with a split rear wing, all in the name of aerodynamics – minimizing drag, increasing downforce, reducing rear turbulence – & more importantly, innovation. Our Formula One concept car was given the name The Stingray.

What Mr. Nerd & Mr. Stud we weren’t prepared for was actually qualifying for the final top 3 teams. Or that we had to present a formal technical presentation in UTP’s Chancellor Hall in the final. Or, even more significant, that the judges who would be evaluating us in the final are Mario Theissen (BMW Motorsports Director), Peter Sauber (Sauber Team Principal), & (are you ready for this) the BMW Sauber F1 drivers themselves, Robert Kubica & Nick Heidfeld.

Kubica & Heidfeld

Robert Kubica & Nick Heidfeld during the autograph session at UTP Complex

Yup, in case you have not read it from the papers, the BMW Sauber F1 team dropped by UTP during the week leading up to Sepang for a Formula One-filled day of activities, coordinated by Petronas Motorsports & UTP. & one of the activities were the presentations by the finalists of the Innovative Design contest.

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Introducing our concept design

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Presenting at the Chancellor’s Hall in front of the crowd & the panel of judges

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Explaining how we tackled the surface pressure analysis factor into our design

We ended up as 2nd place winners. I think we presented well that day (based on feedback, since we had reporters & students coming up to us personally telling how impressed they were with our design & presentation), & the judges were not too hard on us (questions came from Heidfeld & Theissen, who commented that we were being very adventurous, haha). It was an exceptionally humbling experience, being my first technical presentation in front of the mighty BMW Sauber F1 bosses & drivers; yet what an opportunity it was! & me having to orally present in the intimidating Chancellor’s Hall was daunting yet memorable, & surprisingly I was not exactly nervous, so it was a first sign of how beneficial the PCS course was!

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All the winners with (from left) our Rector, Theissen, Sauber, Kubica & Heidfeld

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Supporters, thank you very much!

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Posing with UTP Rector, Datuk Dr. Zainal, & our mock ticket

Wait till you read what we won as prizes each. Sepang F1 Grandstand Diamond Corporate Platform tickets worth RM1950 each, a RM600 BMW Sauber F1 sling bag (ridiculously, & suspiciously, overpriced), & accomodation at Hotel Maya KL with certain meals provided from Thursday to Monday! Pretty awesome for what only started as a little creative afterthought eh?

So on Thursday, off the top 5 winners went on a fully-sponsored KL/Sepang tour trip that was jointly sponsored by ESPN & Petronas. We the UTP design winners were joined in the group by other contest winners from Singapore, Thailand, Taiwan & Indonesia, though their contest was not a design competition, rather a guess-the-champion kinda contest. But just like them, I was taking this trip as a welcomed honeymoon break from UTP life.

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Yawning before departure. Mak cik cleaner not coming along for the ride

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First thing upon reaching KL, check into a 5-star hotel

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With the most bubbly, fantastic, open-minded chaperone you can ever get, Miss Suhana

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This was taken during the 1st night buffet welcome dinner at the hotel, which was impeccable – huge oysters, sushis, sirloin steaks, marshmallows & berries dipped in chocolate fountain, topped off with Haagen-Dasz

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More sponsored goodies!

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With Jacinth & Juliana, our tour group coordinators from Leo Burnett, at the KLCC sky bridge

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At Menara KL with Pearl & Kiddick from Thailand

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The whole group – big hearty thanks to ESPN & Petronas from Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia & Taiwan!

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Marching towards Sepang, Qualifying Day

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A wet Race Day: BMW Sauber supporters for the day. Petronas, please ignore the red bags

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Would have very much preferred to join these guys: the prancing horse of Scuderia Ferrari has always been in my heart since I was a kid

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Couldn’t resist a Ferrari polo tee, RM300 hangus. Ed also puchased one though he wasn’t a Ferrari fan at all, damn potong stim for loyal fans like I

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Having corporate platform ticks allows you a free Golf GTi ride from the gate to the grandstands

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With my old Mercedes-Benz Malaysia colleagues, Anida & Liz, at the Mercedes-Benz booth. How I miss them, such delightful colleagues they were during my internship there

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Anida: “Tahun nih got your McLaren SLR kat display!”

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Pictures like these make me feel tall & huge.

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Juliana & Jacinth showing who’s behind all this

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The F1 drivers performing their publicity duties. Apologies to Petronas, Kubica & Heidfeld, for I was cheering for Raikkonen

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The gorgeous M-Benz AMG safety & medic cars. I was drooling at the SL63 AMG, that babe purred like no other

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If cars are not your thing, there are always the local women to oggle at

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But if local women are not your cup of tea, salivate at imported babes then

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The teams setting up at the grid for the formation lap. Thank you Kimi for qualifying P7, for you were directly in front of us! Watching the extremely thorough Ferrari engineers & crew working was an inspirational moment

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1 of the main reasons I was looking forward to, seeing my idol – Michael Schumacher, the only driver who was as mean as the machine he drove. He waved back at us when I joined the crowd in hollering his name. The sore throat was worth it, could have died a happy man that day.

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It’s Kimi Raikkonen! Looking as oblivious-to-the-crowd as ever

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He didn’t even look remotely interested in shaking Najib’s hand, it was quite obvious Kimi did not give a shit

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When the race started, let’s just say…thank God for those ear plugs

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20 V8 engines rumbling together waiting for the red lights to go off, & screaming away towards the first corner…the sound was so unbelievable I could have shat, or shitted…whatever, in my pants. The sound itself was worth the admission price. You have got to hear it LIVE

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Button in his overperforming Brawn GP

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A lying arrogant wanker called Hamilton in his underperforming McLaren

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You would have known by now that the race was later red-flagged because of the rain & looming darkness

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Which led to rather bizarre scenes

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A picture-perfect moment of the BMW Sauber crew packing up in the pits after the race

1 of the disadvantages of watching an actual Grand Prix live is that we totally had no idea what the hell was happening, & amongst the confusion, the rather horrible commentary (or rather, mumbling) over the grandstand speakers did not help. However, putting aside the red flag & the wait & all, the race was a sublime strategic face-off coupled with spellbinding tactical brilliance, with half of the racing done in the pits. Absolutely insane stuff, & it would have been perfect if the race was eventually restarted, but well, we can’t have it all.

After the race, we had free admission to the Jamiroquai after-race concert held at the helipad area just beside the race track. Corporate hospitality was again being blessed upon us as we had a special viewing stage for corporate ticket holders, along with free food & flow of drinks, beer & wine included. Incredibly, not even the constant downpour could dampen the crowd’s spirits, & Jamiroquai was pretty much in their element. Even though their songs sounded pretty much the same,  they certainly brought the funk to Sepang. The muddy grounds were not very kind to my Porsches though.

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View from the corporate stage, Jamiroquai strutting their stuff onstage

Eventually, all good things come to an end, & we discovered that the end of our honeymoon break arrived only too soon on Monday.

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Miss Suhana doing her last jig (hangover from Jamiroquai the night before) before returning to her daily executive responsibilities in UTP

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Departure back to Tronoh. Rats.

& after 5 days of 5-star treatment, I have to start getting used to the idea of not waking up in the morning to a hot shower & buffet breakfast.

Thanks all for the gorgeous pictures, especially to the DSLRs of Cem & Saf!

Escape To Penang Island…

Quick update: Guitar enthuthiasts listen up! The newly-opened Wisma Bentley Music near The Curve is currently having the holy-crap-are-you-serious Taylor T5 on display. 5 gorgeous versions of them to be exact, retailing from RM9200 to about Rm12000. You heard that right, the Taylor T5, the one guitar that brings balance to the force (almost literally), the Holy Grail of all guitars, & it has arrived in our country! I was so overwhelmed playing the black one (yes, I’ve finally played the T5!) I almost forgot about the rest of the guitars I was surveying over the weekend. At the moment I’m considering the beautiful handcrafted L series from Yamaha, either the 16 or the 6, anyone with an opinion?

Upon arrival in Penang on Friday evening, the 1st thing Alan & I experienced was a reduce in sperm count.

That’s because our chief tour guide, the supreme sifu of the universe (of Penang that is), Chun Yan a.k.a. BBS (don’t ask, it’s an inside joke) plunged us straight into a tour around his internship company, Intel, where the other EE nerds (oops!) San Nien, Debbie, Wai Lun, Suet Yeng, & Gary were working as well. Just by driving around the free trade zone full of electronic companies & factories, I could already feel my balls shrinking by the minute. The group of us then proceeded to meet Chris (& a distant Erica) at Altera, who forced us to wear surgeon caps as shoe covers. Yea, as if a lower sperm count isn’t enough, now we have to walk around the company with bright light blue surgeon caps covering our feet. After laughing at how small Intel’s office cubicles are (kidding!) & at how Penang’s “Silicon Valley” was the biggest gathering of geeks (okay okay…joking also!), except probably that guy who attempted to drop a pen near the feet of Debbie’s mini-skirted legs, we proceeded for dinner at the 1st place anyone would bring Penang visitors to for a big makan…McD! Haha…actually we were rushing for our movie date with Harrison Ford & a couple of crystal skulls, so we were short of time. It was here when, in the midst of chomping dead chicken squashed between sesame seed buns, Debbie decided to replace the word “air” with “ass” in the “No Air” song by Jordin Sparks feat. Chris Brown. This was then followed by a remixed version of the chorus by San Nien & I:

“Tell me how I’m supposed to breathe shit with no air ass, can’t live shit can’t breathe shit with no air ass…”

That was only the beginning of the fun. We had only a limited time of 2 days to explore whatever we could explore in Penang. So here’s a summary, in pictures.

Oh, Indy was okay-lah. Was fun mostly, minus the horrendous tarzan & monkey scenes & some terrible CGI usage, while the ending was horrendous.

Part I – Penang Hill

First thing Saturday morning, up to Penang Hill!

We couldn’t hike up the hill because Chun Yan injured his leg the day before, so we used the train

While waiting for the train ride, we decided we had time to make stupid faces…

…or to try to smile like San Nien…ended up overdoing it

Tired of making faces, we decided to take a nap…

Before the ride: Alan (circled red) caught having guilty pleasure with 1 of his holes…

…while Chris was pictured molesting a happily willing San Nien (this is a nice natural pic though!)

In the train: All of us. Chris is slightly out of the picture because…

…he was enjoying swinging & dancing around a pole!

A moment of melancholy atop the hill…

I spotted a hot chick!

Hot chick spots a hot guy. Hot guy spotted another hot chick, forgets previous hot chick.

Alan posing like a girl in between Chris & I

Soon Yen will love this picture, but San Nien got really high when she saw this…I wonder why

We guys tried to run away & leave Debbie to rot on top of the hill

Now I know why the air up there didn’t smell as fresh as it should have been!

Before the “thrilling” canopy walk: Debbie’s final smile

After that, she was laughing & crying at the same time…”Don’t SHAKE!!! Scary ah~! Angry ah~!”

It was a relaxing walk for all of us…

Uh, well, apparently not for all of us. One particular person was clinging so hard to the ropes with both hands, as if she was going to miraculously elevate 2 meters up & over the ropes down to the trees below

The man that made it fun & really pushed the canopy to the limits: Chun Yan. His leg miraculously recovered up there. Gawd knows how

He made the whole walk more exciting than it should be. When he leaned to the right, the whole path swayed to the right…even the trees swayed to the right!

So I had to sway to the opposite direction to balance it out…San Nien was 2D, so she couldn’t contribute any weight whatsoever

We stopped by a scenic “Hobbiton” on the way down…

Part I.5 – The “Malaysians Are Friendly” Test

This is something you should all take notice of. When we were in the train going up the hill at first, all in our group were excited (with San Nien singing the Indiana Jones theme at every chance she got) & decided to greet & wave to the other train that passed our train on their way down. Something simple & innocent turned into an experiment when, with all of us waving & saying “Hello!!!” madly to the other passing train, none in that other train responded even in the slightest, passing us by like zombies, even more emotionless than Resident Evil zombies.

We tried the greeting & waving again as we passed our 2nd train on the way up, & we got the same set of zombies response. WTF? What happened to “Malaysians are friendly & warm& all that Visit Malaysia bullshit? Deciding to give all you remaining Malaysian bastards (aside from the extremely-friendly 7 of us in our group of course) another chance, all of us agreed we will repeat our greeting again on the way down. We were going to pass 2 more trains in the opposite direction as we go down, surely, SURELY, someone, at least ONE, would be less of a zombie & greet us back? That person did not come from the 3rd train; all we got were cold & blank stares, looking at us as if we were 7 horny monkeys on drugs. Sick of making excuses for them, like maybe we really looked like horny monkeys on drugs, or that they didn’t have enough time to wave back at us when our 2 trains crossed paths, we concluded that if the 4th train were to fail in this friendliness test, then Malaysians seriously need a massive behavior overhaul, while Badawi has a one extra reason to resign. Only 7 friendly Malaysians in 4 train-loads of people?!

The 4th train appeared within our sights soon enough. Our hearts were beating so fast San Nien forgot how to sing the Indiana Jones theme. Once the train was near enough, all 7 of us hollered our greetings & waved as enthusiastically as we could at them for one last push for the sake of humanity…the people at the other train were hopeless…there goes Malaysia’s reputation…even the kids didn’t bother carving out a smile…the last guy nearest to the window of the opposing train looked like a lansi Ah Beng product straight from Ipoh…gone, there goes our last hope…wait a minute, the Ah Beng bloody smiled! He is raising his hand…bless our horny monkey faces, he waved back at us! AH BENG JUST SAVED MALAYSIA’S BLOODY ASS! Hurrayyyy!

Talk about suspense eh? That idiot just had to leave it to the last second, ah bengs really love to be heroic don’t they? Thus, we concluded that there are only 8 friendly Malaysians from our 4 sample trains: Kevin, Chris, Alan, Chun Yan, Wai Lun, San Nien, Debbie, & our new friend Ah Beng.

Do note that NO part of the above test story was exaggerated & is 100% true.

Part II – Fort Cornwallis

Next stop: Fort Cornwallis. Salute!

The valiant & brave Private Kevin Wong wasted no time in the frontline of the attack on the Fort, blowing Francis Light’s light bulbs off in 1 single shot

He then proceeded to hold defending Private Chris Lee as hostage

But Private Kevin’s fellow invading comrade, the sadistic serial woman-murderer Private Alan Leow, was less merciful, taking pleasure in violently shooting local milk lady Deborah Sim

Private Alan’s chilling crime spree finally came to an end when muscular General BBS blew his brains without showing any mercy. The mad Private Alan was said to be still smiling in a horny way at gunpoint.

But wait! There’s still hope for the women defending the fort! Vowing to take revenge for Deborah the milk lady’s murder, here comes Corporal Lee San Nien! She was famous for being able to invade bullets by cleverly utilizing her slim 2-dimensional appearance.

The invading army responds by sending in the heroic Sergeant Lee Wai Lun, who was famous for distracting his enemies in the battle field using his yellow slippers

The 2 Lees square off, 2-D vs yellow slippers, & in the end, girl power prevails! Sergeant Lee Wai Lun surrendered & gave his yellow slippers as a present to Corporal San Nien in exchange for her sparing his life

The victorious Corporal Lee San Nien, flanked by her loyal Private Chris Lee & her new lelaki simpanan Private Kevin Wong, who surrendered after the loss of his fellow comrade Sergeant Lee Wai Lun

We noticed Debbie loves to make weird (or funny, from her own point of view) faces

& here’s another. She’s like saying: “I want to OC!”, which she really did want to actually, at that time

In the end, we could no longer stand it & locked her up for good at the fort for various offenses including making weird faces, mistaking dolphins as elephants & for thinking & claiming that the Pas logo was a white circle with a RED background

Part III – Batu Maung Outdoor War Museum

The next day, with Debbie still locked up in prison & San Nien getting married, I mean, attending a wedding, the remaining 5 guys went to explore the outdoor War Museum of Batu Maung.

Talk about having a huge mojo

Chun Yan has a message to George Bush; he is against war…

NOT!!! Die! Die die die! Die you farking mosquitos!

As we further explored the jungles surrounding this fort-turned-war-museum, we made one of the most shocking of discoveries; we found a long-lost caveman wandering around whom we labelled as A.L.A.N. (A Long-lost Ancient Native). He is seen here (extreme right) unable to pose like a civilized human being, but that’s understandable.

We tried our best to teach him to how to pose as normal as possible while taking pictures. Him squatting in a shitting position is the closest-to-normal attempt we could force out of him

Chris leading A.L.A.N. in a brave escape out of the war museum using hidden passages.

On the way we stumbled upon a set of rotten testicles, to which A.L.A.N. identified were his own, chopped off by his village head a long time ago as punishment for inappropriately molesting a baboon

A.L.A.N., pictured here with Expedition Chief Chun Yan & Chris, the man who headed the escape mission & brought A.L.A.N. to safety for future experiments

Finally, a normal pose! All of us with A.L.A.N. after successfully crossing over the border

As you should realize by now, this is not a properly detailed journal of my travels in Penang, instead it’s a parody of sorts. Please find the more accurate & proper stories of our Penang trip at San Nien’s http://magicporridgepot.wordpress.com/2008/06/01/kevin-and-alan-was-here/. Anyway, I would like to forward a massive word of gratitude to the temporary Penangites for having Alan & I over for the weekend, & for bringing us around to great spots to makan & visit! How remarkable it is that simple things became so memorable because of the company. It was undoubtedly a whole lot of madness, even the first night chat with the guys & the pillow talk was awesome (thanks for that girls, & to San Nien for not allowing me to sleep), & I certainly welcome the weekend break from all the stress back in KL. Looking back at some of these absurd pictures, there was certainly an embarassing amount of childishness involved, but hey, if you can’t find time to let out the inner child within you once in a while to just have a little fun, then you lead a depressing state of life my friend. I returned from Penang a whole lot heavier from cendols & laksas & char kuey teows, with the hope that my sperm count increases back to normal soon.

On another note, Digby’s album, Unfold, did not disappoint. It is a very pretty album, nothing outstanding about her voice or songs, but the 2nd half of the album deserves a listen. At the moment, I’m hooked to “Spell”; her voice is unassumingly angelic in these sort of intimate songs. I’m disappointed about the “Unfold” track though, it could have been so much better if she had only used a brighter guitar for the choruses.

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