It seems just like yesterday we were watching the fireworks on the rooftop of our friend’s condo apartment, followed by the Taiping trip to usher in 2010. And what do we know, it is already on the 11th day of the new calendar. Like where have the last 11 days been?
Oh that’s right, we’ve spent 3 wonderful days up north, a total of a day in IPOH and the other two days in Taiping. While we were there, I did fantasize about staying there. It is cool– as in nature is in abundance, the food is dirt cheap and yummy and I simply love the idea of living in the valley surrounded by hills. We stayed at a brand new hotel- The Flemington, clean and modern with chic interior design for the weekend rate of Rm 148 inclusive of breakfast. The best thing is, the hotel is right smack in front of Lake Gardens, the beautiful place for a morning misty jog (brisk walk for me) and minutes away from the quaint and rustic Taiping old town where it is like being back in the distant past, with everything old ‘pesen’ just the way I love it.
If you go to Taiping and you do not have their mee udang, consider you have NOT been to Taiping. The home of the mee udang is in Kuala Sepetang where it is actually the kampung leading to the sea and every other kampung folk claiming to be selling the best mee udang. And the mee udang is not just any mee udang mind you, the udangs were so huge and fresh from the pond that when they served the steaming bowls of mee udang, you would be forgiven if you think they are just serving you sup udang. There were about 6 huge udangs on top of the mee, and you have to ‘selak’ the udangs to see the mee.
Although we went to the supposedly famous Mak Jah Mee Udang at Kuala Sepetang, I would have to say that the mee udang we had at ‘ warung Prince Edward was way nicer, well… because for me it was spicier hence it gave the ‘kick’ that I needed. And also, if you are in Taiping, you still HAVE not been in Taiping if you do not taste the Ansari Chendol, the stall that has existed since 1940 and generations of this mamak family, the Ansaris sons have taken it in their pride and stride to follow on the tradition of selling the best chendol we have ever tasted. Their self-made family recipe chendol melts in your mouth, not too sweet and a bowl of chendol special with everything in it including pulut, sweet corn, red beans etc is a mere Rm 1.50.
Back from Taiping, life for the year began. Inspired by ex-Taipingnite, Kak Siti of FunnyAccent who still runs almost daily and she is 2 decades older than myself, I decided to take the baby steps to make this year a healthier year with some form of an exercise commitment. Hence I would follow the husband to work where he would drop me off at the park near our place very early in the morning. I would then brisk walk for about 4 rounds in each trip and then walk back home. I’ve done this for 6 days already since coming back from Taiping and I feel great! Firstly, it forces me not to go back to sleep after seeing the husband off for work, secondly, nothing beats the morning dosage of free fresh oxygen from the trees and the smell of the morning dew.
It is only the 11th day and there are a few misses to the new year already. I was infected by this scabies like illness from the cat fleas which landed me a day in Damansara Specialist Hospital. It made my legs and some parts of my body disgustingly scarred. I got it from Tito who was infected by the fleas first. She then went missing mysteriously, after I sorrowfully told her ‘ You know Tito, I got it all from you tau.. Tsk Tsk’, and what do I know, she went missing since Wednesday night which had me crying myself to sleep each time I think of her. Her brother Milo, didn’t come back for days and each time he comes back, he would be yelling all over the house looking for her. And she is still missing.😦
Although the hospital has cleared me of all infections, the scars remained to remind me of Tito, and also that they are just scars on my legs. It forces me to remember that there are others who do not have the luxury of having even legs to be enjoying what I have enjoyed i.e morning walks in the park, aikido, ability to walk everywhere etc. And for that I have to be thankful.
I am currently reading two books concurrently, Have a Little Faith by Mitch Albom and The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown. I’ve read all of Albom’s book beginning with Tuesdays with Morris and this would be the last one of his work, I think. Now is the apt time to be reading Have a Little Faith, a comparative religious genre, although the book is about his ( Mitch’s ) journey writing a eulogy for his Rabbi–in lieu of the recent happenings here where religious issues are concerned.
The second one, The Lost Symbol is a bit weak compared to the previous ones, probably I am getting tired of Robert Langdon, although the theme of Noetic Science is an interesting issue for me the way it discusses the middle path between mysticism and traditional sciences (which are now called alternative healing, for whatever reasons) and modern technological advancement. But again, like I said, I am a bit tired of Langdon so unlike the rest of Dan Brown books, I have not gobbled it up within 4 days like I always do.
So much has happened in just 11 days. I wonder what the rest of the year has in store for us?