Wednesday, March 11, 2015

cny holiday 2015

lovely valentine's day dinner at the junk, which seems to have expanded the second floor over 3 shoplots

then off to bangkok with my family, minus little brother. we stayed at maitria hotel which was super nice and quite affordable. breakfast included. it had a fully equipped kitchen with cooking utensils, cutlery, a dish washer, an oven, a microwave, and even a washing machine.

they also provided 4 bottles of chang water everyday. i thought there was only chang beer

master bedroom

master bathroom

me and my sister's room

the only flaw in the apartment is that our bathroom has no shower door so the water splashes out

tv and computer and free expresso machine in the lobby

we walked to terminal 21 the next day. it's a new mall with a sort of airport theme where each floor is like a different city. our favourite mall of the trip coz it's so nice and yet we can afford the clothes and the food court was the cheapest among the others we visited. you can even refill your bottle at the food court. one small gripe is that thai food courts have this system where you preload a card with money then swipe the cards when you buy food so if you didn't put in enough money, you have to reload; but if you put in too much, you have to go and refund it; and if you're in a group, either you each have to get a card, or only one person can order at a time if you all share the card. 

anyway, one of the more interesting aspects was the toilets. the toilet bowl was high tech.

and each toilet we went to had a different theme. some of the pictures are blurry coz i was trying to take them quickly before people step into them. for some reason, we seemed to be the only people fascinated. haha

 this one was next to the food court so it had a kitchen theme


seaside fishing sort of theme

art gallery

beach theme

the next day we shopped at pratunam market and platinum mall which had cheaper stuff. we were walking to the train station when we saw a stall selling seafood by the roadside and just decided to have dinner there. not bad.

on the day of sa chap meh, we walked to emporium which was an expensive luxury mall so it was out of our price range but somehow a very persuasive lady managed to pull us in with a quick nail buffing session and a few product demonstrations so we ended up buying a body and nail set. the emporium food court was expensive but i think their system was better coz you each get a card when you walk in and you swipe it when you buy food and you only pay on the way out. 

in the evening, we went to asiatique where we had an italian dinner.

then we watched the calypso cabaret show which was performed mostly by ladyboys. it was quite expensive but not so spectacular.

on the first day of cny, we went to the damnern saduak floating market. there were a few floating markets in the file compiled by the hotel so we simply chose this one. we thought we would be walking by the riverside but actually we had to rent a boat to ride through the market. people were selling food and wares from boats.

there were also stalls set up along the river. if you want to look at something, just point and the boatman will bring you nearer

one area was so crowded that all the boats were jammed together

next was the elephant and cultural show at rose garden, which was part of the package

the cultural show provided a simple and brief history of their culture. it was so-so

we went to khao san road after the show. but it's a night market and it was still early evening so we were bored after we walked around and ate a bit so we took a cab (it was super jam at peak hour) back to platinum mall to have dinner at the food court and buy some stuff at the supermarket.

and then we went home the next day. the end. haha. really liked the hotel we stayed in. missed the famous chatuchak market though, coz we weren't there on the weekend.

Monday, February 09, 2015

melbourne trip

two weeks ago, we went to melbourne for the wedding of my neighbour/childhood friend

chik kia flew from singapore and i flew from kuching and we met up at klia2. we arrived several hours early before our connecting flight to melbourne and spent the time browsing the klia2 mall. we went into the terminal half an hour before the flight and saw that the status was boarding. while i was taking off my contacts in the toilet, chik kia started rushing me coz the flight status changed to 'closed'. so we panicked and started running. damn far i tell you this klia2 international terminal. so empty and so unnecessarily big. we were so scared we missed the flight. when we finally reached the gate, it was still 10 minutes before departure time. then the flight was delayed for 1 hour because they were looking for the bags of some passengers who couldn't make the flight. -_-"

slept badly in the flight and reached melbourne the next morning. the immigration queue was so long. after we got our luggage, we had to queue again to go out. and because we declared we brought some medicines, we went into the line which gets sniffed by drug dogs. we were late for lunch with some of my old schoolmates. tried green eggs and ham. i think it was just some green coloring in hollandaise sauce over poached eggs.

 took a nap after lunch, then met up again for italian dinner at lygon street.

went to the great ocean road the next day. rented a car for two days with two friends

it was super freezing cold even though the sun was shining. the wind was so chilly. we stopped at several beaches along the way.

this kid was pushing the sand with his head, which we found pretty odd and funny

the twelve apostles

panoramic view. but some of the apostles are behind the cliff

the london bridge

here we are looking at the foamy ocean. sometimes it's so foamy that the foam actually floats up in the air

day 3. went to philip island and got the 3-park pass. we went to the churchill island heritage farm where we saw demonstrations of cow-milking, sheep-shearing, whip-cracking, and sheep-herding.

then we went to the koala conservation center where we saw koalas, an echidna, and wallabies

went to watch the penguin parade in the evening. the tiny fairy penguins come home at sunset and we're not allowed to take photos so these were found online. they come in groups from the sea, then run up the beach to their little burrows

the next 3 days were spent at the australian open coz tennis is chik kia's passion, apart from me. *ahem* he bought 3-day ground passes. we spent the first 2 days at the show courts under the hot sun.

but on the third day we realised that the ground pass allows us to go to the hisense arena. so we queued for 2 hours to get into arena just in time to watch the last 15minutes of andy murray defeating joao sousa.

and at night we watched sharapova and nadal at the rod laver arena

day 7 was the day of the big event. we squeezed in a trip to victoria market in the morning, then went for wun hwui's wedding in the afternoon. the reception was first, followed by cocktails, then the dinner

 lovely bride

candid picture
  

the bride and groom danced in their lodge school uniform because they were classmates in kindergarten, then lost touch coz they went to different classes, then met again in melbourne and fell in love

early the next morning, we rushed to the airport and our flight was delayed again. so had to rush for my connecting flight too. sigh. but it was a good trip. may need another trip there to explore more of melbourne.