Monday, 31 January 2011

Lake Garden : A Walk In The Park

Apart from Taman Putra Perdana in Putrajaya, another park Zaini and I always frequent is the Lake Garden.

What can you do at the park? Plenty. For starters:
Working out while out enjoying the fresh air. Jogging is always a popular activity, as is walking. Or maybe a bit of exercise at the exercise station?
There's always a photo-shoot or two at Lake Garden. Be it for a publication, wedding photo shoots or just photography enthusiasts with their models.
Playing badminton and cycling are popular too. And there is a Qigong (or is it Tai-Chi?) practitioners in front of the lake.
Playing at the playgrounds will make any kid (or kid at heart) happy, by just running around or maybe a swing or two?
After all the workout, and you developed an appetite; a picnic with the family should be nice.
We love to stop at a nearby cafe and have breakfast there, after all the workout we did. All those calories burnt earlier was always got offset by what we ate for breakfast at the Lake Garden! It's a popular spot for those at the park so finding an empty table can be difficult. My favourite breakfast at Lake Garden is Nasi Ambeng.

What's your favourite outdoor activities?

Saturday, 29 January 2011

Where Are The Lokams?

Lokam, Ponkan, Mandarin oranges - where are the freebies?

Just a few more days to Chinese New Year, and the office didn't receive much this year. Seriously, the mandarin oranges we got for Chinese New Year continue to decrease year after year. It used to be hard for me to distribute them to other colleagues because they all have way too much already for them to bring back and now? People are asking for them! Is the economy still bad? Or is it because of the higher price of the fruit? But then, every year there is a reason or two for the higher price of mandarin oranges, come Chinese New Year. Don't you think so too?

Anyway, I don't buy them and I'll just wait for free ones to come my way. Send them over, folks! Quick!

Though I was a tad mollified by the few boxes of Chinese New Year themed chocolates and cupcakes that came my way this year. Lovely, aren't they? Not to mention yummy too!

Thursday, 27 January 2011

At The Park : Taman Putra Perdana, Putrajaya Again

More photos of our favourite park for a jog on weekends. Check out my previous post on Taman Putra Perdana too.
Taman Putra Perdana is located on the highest point in Presint 1. A hilly park with a really nice sweeping view of Putrajaya. This monument in the photo is at Laman Mercu Tanda, if Im not mistaken.
A family enjoying a walk in the park
This is a park with rows and rows of fountains. Some are working, many were not.
A water-cooler in working order! Now, if you are used to go to parks in/around KL - a working water cooler is an anomaly. Sad, but true.
Emergency need for the loo? No worries, toilets are nearby too and you don't need to pay to use it!

If you visit the park on Saturdays (or any Public Holiday) around 8.00am - 10.00am, we might just bump into each other! *^-^*

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Another Set Of Uniform

Went out yesterday despite a hurting knee because we needed to go to a uniform shop and buy Raimie's Boy Scout uniform. Good God! A set of these sure doesn't come cheap!

I joked to the sales staff that we should just ask my son to change to PBSM (Red Cross) instead as that'll be cheaper!

When I was in Standard Four, I wanted to join the Girl Guide but the uniform cost scared me and I didn't want to ask so much money from my parents to buy them. How much did it cost me to buy a set of Girl Guide uniform in 1985? A whopping RM40.00! How much did I fork out for this uniform? A mere RM165.00 (yeah, mere!). Time sure has change.

I'm looking forward to my son's Boy Scout activities, as does Zaini. We hope that he'll be tougher and more outgoing by joining Boy Scout. *^-^*

Raimie  - Buat Habis Baik!

Saturday, 22 January 2011

At The Park : Taman Putra Perdana, Putrajaya

Our weekend mornings are usually spent with us heading to Taman Putra Perdana in Putrajaya for a spot of fresh air. This park sees plenty of joggers and also what seem to be the favourite sport to play at this park - Badminton.
A hilly park, with an awesome view.
I like running this path and managed to overexert myself and hurt my knees sprinting up and down it last weekend. Ouch!

There is a nice flight of stairs leading tup o Shangri La Hotel right across the park where one can run up and down, pretending to be Rocky. LOL
 or you can head here for a less challenging workout.

Where do you head to for fresh air?

Thursday, 20 January 2011

The Head Honcho This Year

Zaini told me not to brag (i.e. gloat about it in my blog), but how can I not?

Raimie got selected as his class Ketua Kelas (class head?) this year. It may be nothing for you guys, but remember - my son is rather shy especially around adults. For him to get noticed and selected by the teacher to bear the responsibility is for me, an achievement.

So far, he happily reported loving his new post. He told me that the only thing his class teacher wanted him to improve was for him to talk louder. And did you know what he asked for a treat for being selected as Ketua Kelas? A facebook account! Kids these days...

Monday, 17 January 2011

That Plant Is As Shy As You Are

My son was suddenly very interested in the Semalu (Mimosa pudica, touch me not) plant these days. He was very interested to know how and why the plant would fold inward/droop when touched.

We spent a bit of time looking at "semalu" plants after our jogging session at a nearby park and he was so engrossed poking the plant and watching the reactions.

I told him the plant was as shy as he is when approached by strangers. He is now in Standard 3 and yet still finds it hard to be comfortable around people he doesn't know so he just clams up. I guess that's his defense mechanism, just like the plant.

Did I tell you he is very similar to his Mom? Yeah, well... I was that way too at his age. Actually, I was much worse. Way worse...

Do you know there is a Malay folklore about this plant? A condensed tale of the semalu plant:

There was once a Puteri (princess), a daughter of Sultan Zainudin Shah; named Puteri Seri Buana. She was a very shy princess and despite many suitors coming for her hands in marriage, they were all rejected by her.  She was always cooped up in her room and did not mingle with anyone at all.

One day, a prince named Tengku Ludin came to seek her and the puteri was scared of Tengku Ludin because unfortunately Tengku Ludin was so ugly with bulging eyeballs and potruding teeth (so they say. I "love" the not so political correct stories of yesteryears sometimes. Evil = ugly. Ugly = evil). The puteri ran to the river with Tengku Ludin hot on her heels. She then seeked the help of a Ketapang tree and the tree obliged by dropping a huge leaf for the puteri. The puteri then set sail using the leaf to seek help from Raja Gedembai (a guy who can curse anyone and turn them into stone).

All this while, Tengku Ludin was still chasing Puteri Seri Buana. Arriving at Raja Gedembai kingdom, the puteri cried out for help because Tengku Ludin was out to capture her and Raja Gedembai came out and cursed Tengku Ludin and he became a lalang (weed?) because he was evil and all that. Raja Gedembai then kindly advised Puteri Seri Buana to return home but Puteri Seri Buana was scared of her royal dad and his royal wrath. Raja Gedembai then turned her into a semalu plant, befitting her very shy persona.

Saturday, 15 January 2011

Night Market At Jalan TAR

A visit to Jalan TAR's night market was our last activity for the day on Christmas Day after spending the day gallivanting around town.
Let's see. A recap of the places we went to on Dec 25th:
a nostalgic trip back in time at KTM Railway Station
a stop at the Islamic Arts Museum and also to the National Mosque
and heading to Dapur Penyet in Maju Junction for dinner (and got to use a particularly funky smelling toilet there!)

Phew! A really packed day for us and we loved every minute of it! The company we had that day helped tremendously to make our day trip in our own backyard interesting. I sure hope she had as much fun as we did that day! Anna, thanks to you, we got to enjoy our own backyard that we took for granted!
What's that written on the arch? It said Jalan Melayu or Malay Street. You go to Jalan TAR night market (or the nearby rows and rows of shops) if you want to shop for all things Malay.
Jalan TAR night market is always packed - if you hate crowds, don't come here. If you like jostling with other people and soak in the atmosphere, don't miss it. The night market was as crowded as when Jalan TAR has the Bazaar Ramadhan on.
There are plenty of food sold and you'd be spoilt for choice if you visit this night market (or any other night market in Malaysia). We got ourselves some chicken satay and just asked the vendor to douse our satay with the peanut sauce and not put it separately. We wanted to eat them PRONTO! XD
Zaini enjoying his satay and Raimie was concetrating eating his favourite fruit - jackfruit.

Check out Anna's awesome video on Jalan TAR night market at here.

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Dinner At Dapur Penyet

After our visit to the Masjid Negara (National Mosque) we realized that it was almost 7.00pm and we need to eat dinner soon. We had lunch at the Malay Tea House and I totally forgot about my plan to have Nasi Ambeng or maybe Sup Tulang at Lake Garden; so we need to find somewhere to eat pronto. It was starting to drizzle in the evening so any plan to eat al-fresco was scrapped.

A visit to Jalan TAR's  night market was also on the card that day, so we head to Jalan TAR which was jam packed with traffic both vehicles wise and pedestrian wise. Zaini parked the car at the much quieter Maju Junction mall and we had dinner at one of the few places still open at the mall. Man, this mall is quite dead in the weekend. I wonder why, when you have a bustling crowd in the nearby area - Pertama Complex, Sogo not to mention all those shops in Jalan TAR?
Dinner that day was at Dapur Penyet  in Maju Junction mall. Our first ever taste of ayam penyet! WOOT! Not a Malaysian fare, but well, we are in Malaysia. We eat internationally here, no? And like I mentioned to Anna - there's plenty of Indonesians here in Malaysia so Indonesian fare is not exactly hard to find here.
For those who have no idea what Ayam Penyet is - it's a traditional Indonesian cuisine which originates from Surabaya. The chicken is specially marinated with various spices and herbs from certain plants. The meat is then smashed with a wooden headed hammer and deep fried until golden light brown.
Everyone had the same thing which was their promo set (RM6.90) that consisted of rice, chicken and drinks of our choice.The chicken plate also consisted of boiled kangkong, fried tempeh and tauhu along with a nice dollop of sambal and a small bowl of soup.

Then, it's off to Jalan TAR night market!

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Is It Prayer Time? A Visit To The National Mosque

We made it to Masjid Negara (National Mosque) after the Asar prayer  on Saturday, Dec 25th.; after our visit to the Islamic Arts Museum and also to the KTM Railway Station nearby.
Our visit to Masjid Negara marked Anna's first visit to a mosque. We were happy and honoured to be the first to bring her to one. *^-^*
Don't worry if you are not properly attired to visit the mosque. There's those funky purple robes that you can wrap yourself in while touring the Masjid Negara that you can borrow. I, myself prefer to be wrapped in my own set of clothes.
Inside the mosque. Just imagine this area will be filled to the brim during Friday prayers. That'll be an awesome sight (and photo op too!)
The main prayer hall.

While muslims are free to enter the main prayer hall(to pray), it's off limits for tourists. There are mosque's staff and also volunteers to assist visitors on any question you might have  (about the mosque or Islam) while visiting the National Mosque. And friendly people, they are too. Feel free to ask them plenty of questions - it's highly encouraged to do so. You may get freebies if you do, but they come in form of books on Islam.
 A shiny, shiny donation box
Enjoying the view, both the interior of the mosque and also the surrounding areas.
The courtyard.

Would you visit Masjid Negara someday if you hadn't done so?

Saturday, 8 January 2011

A Visit To Islamic Arts Museum

Read my previous posts on places we visited on Christmas Day, 2010 and having a ball being touristy and all:
a nostalgic trip back in time at KTM Railway Station.

That day, we also visited the Muzium Kesenian Islam (Islamic Arts Museum), just a short walk away from the railway station.We always passed by this museum on our way to Lake Garden on weekends but we never made a stop here, thinking that we would not be permitted into the museum with what we were wearing (shorts and sweaty shirts). Happy to inform you all, there is no strict dress code to the museum. But of course, be practical and dress appropriately.
The Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia (IAMM) was officially opened on December 12, 1998 as a gift from the Albukhary Foundation, with the assistance of the Malaysian government and the Islamic Department of the Islamic Development of Malaysia (JAKIM). 

The style of the museum building is modern, with an Islamic feel. On the roof, artisans turned the dome-construction traditions of Central Asia into the building’s crowning glory. The turquoise-coloured domes are now a landmark on the Kuala Lumpur skyline. 

Inside the building, the angularity of 21st century design is contrasted with the soft, rounded forms of the five domes that dominate the museum’s interior. I was completely smitten with the domes. Instead of trying to photograph any exhibits (or looking at them much), I spent my time there looking at the domes and making my neck hurt in the process. LOL 
Inverted dome

and more domes, with fabolous artistry


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