Sunday, March 16, 2008

Penang CNY Trip '08 (II)...槟城农历年之旅08(II).......ペナン春節の旅08(II)..

Well, besides Penang, I also went to KL and Melaka (which i haven't been for more than 10 years, i know!!!) KL wasn't as developed as my memory serves me, its actually pretty chaotic...i was abit taken abck, or maybe it was cos of the Pudu/Chow Kit area which i went on my 1 st day, it was really torn down-looking and it looked quite undeveloped, like what i would imagine some other less developed South East Asian cities would be like...i went to some places thought not all which i intended to visit (i.e. missed out on visiting Batu Caves, etc) I did manage to take a quick tour of The Gardens which is really high-end, something u get in Singapore, Taipei, HK,etc and also, of cos, The Pavillion, (bought some stuff there, quite ex, its again towards the high-end market) and also other shopping malls like StarHill Gallery, Lot 10, etc...managed to see The Curve as well which was pretty new in its concept (open-space concept) and visited Central Market, Chinatown Petaling Street, etc..had Hainan Chicken Rice in Chinatown TWICE at this place called Nanxiang cos it was damn delicious so i had to have it twice before i left ...also went to Dataran Merdeka and the Sultan Ismail Station...very touristy i know!! (but heck, i've never been before k...)

Met up with some friends whom i've not seen for some time, including the girls i met on my Bkk trip in '06 when i was in Ayuttaya and finally got the photos we took then ( i know! even the girls themselves didn't get the pics until now, 1 1/2yrs later, even tho they all live in KL!haha..good thing i met up with them,if not, they may never get it!) We had dinner had Suria KLCC, the nightview of the fountain open space was indeed impressive...), also managed to meet this friend from Melbourne, whom used to live in the same student apart as me and we had dinner together every week night at the communal dining area...it surprised us how fast time had passed...its been more than 5 years since we last met as we started counting the yrs since (i lost contact after i moved out of the aprt and she finished her masters course and left melb soon after)..omg, it was just like yesterday...she hasn't changed much, if at all since we met, and she just got married too! Met her husband too later, he was nice...

Got to meet up with a blogger friend of mine too...altho i knew him in 06' but i didn't get a chance to meet him until this trip to KL, we met at The Curve, had lunch at Kluang Old Station, he was nice, intellectual as i imagined...had a nice chat, took me to Ikea and had a quick tour of the place and people-watching, and was nice enough to take me to the nearest station so i could take a lrt train into the city...abit embarassed as it meant him skipping out on his gym routine which he was originally planning to do after our meet up...

Melaka was nice..actually i enjoyed Melaka much more than KL!! I was not expecting much of Melaka cos i thought it was a small town with possibly next to nothing BUT i was amazed at how much fun it was....at least on a day trip! It is really really small and everything is squeezed into one area, definitely walkable...my cousin (the possibly gay one i was talking about in my earlier post rem? the one whom has huge muscles, has like nine different tatoos in nine different areas of his body, ..the med student) and my parent's friend took me around...visited all the usual places like Stadhuys, St Paul's Church, A'Famosa, incl. Jonker Street where i went both in the daytime and at night..i loved Jonker Street, it was really small and compact and i had the DELICIOUS Melaka-famous Chendol (google it if u dun know what's chendol, for my foreign readers).. NOW i know why 'gula melaka' is...well, called 'gula MELAKA'...i went to this stall (there are various ones on Jonker selling it) which is supposed to be famous and also had the Nyonya-style Curry noodles which was fantastic!!! Its different from the one in Penang and equally tasty! Also visited these two big new shopping malls in Melaka, forgot what their names are but they are superclose to A'Famosa and directly opposite each other,...had Old Town Kaya Toast with Orange juice (god, i love the kaya toast there) ...had a quick drive thru of Bukit Cina as well as the Melaka GH (where my cousin is interning now..i just realised alot of people actually do the medical course which is this twinning program between India and Melaka, was surfing the blogs when i came across someone else doing the exact same course, and also my parent's melaka friend also knows someone's son whom did that course too)...

One really should visit Jonker street at night! It was soooooo crowded and the atmosphere so lively too! There was even a stage performance of seniors dancing the cha-cha with tourists joining in too!! Wow! You can imagine all the old aunties dancing with the white caucasian tourist types...hahaha...

yea, so melaka was great...oh yeah forgot to mention, ASTRO!!! This is the cable network in Malaysia which has become even more fantastic now! They now have a hokkien channel which shows 24.7 Hokkien shows imported from Taiwan, its really cool! Its quite a popular channel and has a devout following now in Malaysia, and especially Penang...my mother likes to watch it too!!!! There was also a hidden gem, a new channel which most malaysians prob ignore, but which i loved....and that is Astro Kirana, the Asian movie channel!!!!! Its like the Asian HBO but what is really fantastic about it is that it not only shows well-known HK, Korean, and Japanese films but ALSO lesser-known Vietnamese, Thai, and guess what????? FILIPINO MOVIES!!!!!! Yes! I was SHOCKED to find it screening a steady line up of Filipino films every week despite there being next to no market for things filipino in Malaysia!! And whats more, all films shown have both English and Malay subtitles including the pinoy ones, so it was literally heaven for me!!!! I managed to catch some Filipino films in my short stay including 'lovestruck' which i was HOPING to find when i realised Kirana screens pinoy movies and guess what it did!!!!!! YES! I woke at 5 45am just to catch this WITH ENG SUBS (u can hardly find it even on dvd, i checked the internet hoping to find an eng dvd version to no luck) Oh...JennMark loveteam i STILL love u....why did they have to break up? why did jennylyn have to not only go out with the new guy (whom isn't even cute! mark herras is way more gwapo k!) but to get herself pregnant and unwed !...now the filipinos reading this should know what i'm talking about...and i caught 'Eternity' with Dingdong Dantes and Filipino beauty Iza (trailer:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cnsZTJxTtOU)

as well as Oh! My Ghost with Rufa-Mae and the gorgeous Marvin Augustin (let me emphazise the word 'gorgeous') ...when the scene of him just out of the shower with a white towel wrappped around his waist and his bare taut chest came, i was sooooo turned on, nothing like a cute hunky bare chested guy with a white towel around his waist right! SUCH a turn-on..and then he jumps butt-up on to bed, seeexxyyyyy..)..Rufa-Mae, as usual, was sexy, does anyone notice that she has HUGE breast?? Heck, i am sure everyone does, even me, hehe.. (watch the trailer here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7XA7mjKomxE&feature=related)

I also introduced Filipino films to my family and cousins, ha! the Phillipines government should pay me for being their de facto embassador....many ppl thought the films were Malay films cos we really dun know much about other South East Asian countries, least of all the Phillipines...i also caught 'Crying Ladies' with my mother and i loved it, Sharon Cuneta was great...and Eric Quizon, well he's most definitely gay! Everytime he plays a straight man, it just isn't convincing, he is just so gay, not effeminate, just gay...he's a talented actor too!...i missed Blue Moon, damn, i had to go to family reunion dinner!!! (trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qrplF7IBenM&feature=related)

I know i am digressing here but i managed to catch one of the most romantic films in Filipino Cinema, which was Got 2 Believe (2002) by Claudine Baretto and the now-deceased Rico Yan, (mv/trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N9QxgAV0zMU) soooo romantic...at first watch, felt it was not really impressive but its one of those films which gets better and better each time you see it...(at least for me it was!) and the lines in there was fantastic! I used to love the lines and meaningful quotes from Korean dramas ( i know many ppl think korean stuff are shallow and lovey-dovey but i beg to differ, there are many gems and meaningful quotes about life and love actually) but now Filipino movies are where i draw my interesting and inspiring collection of quotes from....for instance, in Got 2 Believe:
CB: Why?
RY: I don't know...
CB: You don't know?!!
RY: I don't know...it just hit me....i didn't even believe in forever Toni,......but....i think i found forever in you (this has got to be one of the most romantic lines i've heard all-time~~now, when oh when, will a man say that to me and sweep me off my feet???)....i'm sorry, i dun wanna seem like i am pushing myself onto you...
CB: You never say sorry for Loving Someone, You never say sorry for loving Me....

or Blue Moon: True Love Happens Only Once, But It is enough to last a Lifetime..

or... Moments of Love: In a sleepy lakeside town, time curves for two people to meet and part. In the end, all that is left are their Moments of Love.

gosh, some readers must be choking bck with laughter how i can think the above sappy lines can be meaningful or romantic but i dun care, i have never been embarassed at being a hopeful romantic nor having notions of love and life which may seem old-fashioned or conservative...

Currently reading: 'Asian Labour in the Wartime Japanese Empire'.
Another book currently reading: 'a Public Betrayed' as well as re-starting my self-study of Japanese which you can see is the textbook underneath the English book...


Anyways.. back to Penang!!!! Yea, enjoyed my trip, though i must be looking more and more like a foreigner cos so many people thought i was a foreigner when i was bck! At the airport when i asked for something, the saleslady said to me: in yen? I was taken abck, do i look Japanese?! And she was like yeah...and many others would ask where i was from...haha...so i ended up speaking Malaysian style English and Hokkien most of the time so ppl wouldn't think i was a foreigner...they say its my fair skin but i think its the 'aura' i give off and dress sense which seems 'not malaysian' cos there are plenty of fair skinned chinese in malaysia so that can't be it.... My 'Chinese Chic' High Collar Top:)
Oh yeah, one last thing, beside stocking up on the clothes (did abit of shopping) and underwear shopping, i also managed to make a chinese-style top from a tailor! Its my first real one (i have many chinese-inspired ones but none authentic) and i emphasised with the tailor the fastening must be from the side and must have a super high mandarin collar...i wore it once to gurney plaza expecting people to be staring (cos i really looked like i just stepped out of 1930s Shanghai or 1960s Hong Kong with my high collar qipao top and a cardigan on top) but to my surprise no one really looked at all:)) I'll post pics up when i get the chance...
I bought two frames of new glasses on this trip bck, one black for the 'intellectual look' and one red for the 'stylish, designer look'...hehehe...


oh yea, also bought a new digi camera too AND i missed the Mardi Gras this yr, cos of all the bad luck that happened upon my arrival in Sydney...sigh, hopefully i'll be able to join in the fun again next year:)

Anyways, thats all for now:)

2 comments:

Michael said...

i watched Masahe last year. It was showing in Taipei but only in one theater... but before that the last time i saw a GP pinoy movie was wen i was in high school (the time wen everybody was still crazy about Sharon Cuneta). you probably need to give me a list of must-watch pinoy movies.

michael

hcpen 彭皓全 said...

michael: Man, you are missing big-time!! hahaha...but then many filipinos dun seem to know how to appreciate their own movie industry, judging from the disinterest/negative comments i often hear about it from filipino readers as well as on filipino blogs..look thru my later-half 2007 archives for the post on 'rediscovering my SEA roots' for a whole list of recommended pinoy films, incl. gay-oriented ones, as well as watch 'crying ladies' and 'got 2 believe':)