Summer in Malaysia 2014 – Part One

Hello, I’m trying to deviate from the constant barrage of food related posts (particularly trying not to write a restaurant review every single day) so here’s an update on my last couple of days.

I flew home to Malaysia

My flight was less than perfect because I was sitting next to an obnoxious little kid. As someone who spent most of her childhood being absolutely terrified of attention or speaking up, I have no insight into how this happens. Is it because the parents lavish too many praises? Or are the kids themselves just inherently arrogant little turds? I’m 22 years old and have zero understanding of what it takes to raise a child so forgive me if I’m brash but if your kid is misbehaving in public in a way that directly impacts me, I’m going to whine about it on my blog.

It began when I nearly walked right past my seat on the plane because I saw a kid was occupying the one right next to it and was secretly hoping that he wouldn’t be next to me. It’s not that I hate children especially since they are past the age of crying for the duration of the flight, but I had a feeling that this kid was going to want to talk to me and I just don’t like conversing on the plane. As it turns out I was totally right. The kid was incredibly hyper because he was drinking Pepsi throughout the entire flight. He was also coughing like crazy (I don’t know why his dad was letting him drink soft drink and eat ice cream?) to the point where he was barking all over my meal as the flight attendant leaned over to hand it to me. I can usually tolerate bad behaviour, hyperactivity and germs by keeping a distance and zoning out. But then he brought Pokemon into the equation.

Alex (kid’s name) had a 3DS with Alpha Sapphire on it and was hell-bent on showing it off to me which I didn’t mind because it was Pokemon. What I *did* mind though was that five minutes after knowing each other he’d already begun trash-talking me! I mean hey kid, contrary to popular belief, treating girls like crap will not make them like you! He’d started going on about how his team would smash my team (I have a Leaf Green emulator on my laptop which I showed to him) which was not only really irritating and obnoxious, he was also wrong, so so so wrong. It was here I realised that I was no longer in the real world, I was in the Pokemon world and Gary Oak was sitting right next to me.

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I had lunch at Sitka Restaurant

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(This isn’t an official restaurant review so I’m just going to  speak about my general experience)

PJ is seriously adopting the brunch life that Australia is so renown for now. Mom keeps her finger on the pulse so when we’re home she’s able to guide me away from lukewarm eggs benedict, average looking big breakfast sets and instead to places with a more eclectic offering. Heck, I don’t even order eggs, avo and toast in Australia, I’m even less likely to have any here.

Sitka Restaurant must be pretty on the ball too as their menu reflects the current flavours of the month back in Sydney, gua baos and lobster rolls. Salad game is A+, the presentation is reminiscent of In The Annex, which is probably the highest praise I can give to brunch food styling.

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Gua baos were fluffy as always although soft-shell crab not all that crunchy perhaps because we were given the body and not the spindly legs.

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Was really impressed with the squid ink bun for the lobster roll although the roll itself was a bit too mayo-ey. Still, props for lobster pieces large enough to actually taste. My favourites were the beef brisket gua bao and the soft taco beef! I think they use the same beef in both dishes which is super flavourful from the gochujang.

I played tennis twice in 15 hours

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While Sharapova can probably beat me with one both arms and both legs behind her back, it doesn’t diminish my love for playing tennis when I’m home. One of my games was at 7 am this morning so the sky was still pretty dark when I left my house. I always opt to play outdoors in the morning because there’s something magical about being  alive and hitting hard objects with fervour while the world around you slowly wakes up.

I had dinner at Soleil

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After hearing so much about Soleil, my parents finally brought me to try it together with our family friends the Tans. Many, many thanks to Uncle Albert who fought valiantly with my stepdad to pay for the bill! After years of witnessing this Chinese cultural phenomenon I’ve found that the most efficient way to do it is to arrive early (often the hardest part) and give your credit card as soon as you get in so the waitstaff won’t accept cards from anyone else. I unfortunately didn’t get to take photos with everyone like I had initially planned but we had some really good conversations that night followed by some stand out dishes.

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I didn’t end up liking my dish very much as the cod was overcooked. A little bit tough and not at all soft and flakey like you’d expect it to be.

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The Perigord truffles also didn’t turn out to have much of a scent or a flavour, I was even give a whole flake to try and it was like eating paper. On the plus side I loved our shared starters of mussels and these ginormous clams. Uncle Albert also picked a huge winner in the form of his pasta which had scallops larger than the ones at Sushi Tengoku’s.

I bought five cheongsams and two dresses with my mom

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I went back to May’s boutique today, a seemingly quintessential fob/lala clothing store cum hair salon that’s also a treasure trove for gorgeous dresses. Wendy and her domestic helpers twitter about us as soon as we walk in readily offering any form of help they can. I usually hate overly attentive sales staff but they have a serious amount of clothing in such a small two-floor space they share with some hairdressers, so I can really use all the help they can give me. Most of the time they bring me stuff that I would never wear but I can say no a hundred times and they wouldn’t take offense, only learning to pick clothes that seem more ‘me’ based on what I end up choosing for myself.

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(Okay I guess you can’t really see the dress in this photo)

I have no idea where they source their clothing, factories in China and other parts of Asia spring to mind. The sizing is ridiculous and inconsistent, I range from S to XL and mom goes up to XXL sometimes. If it’s a free size garment it’ll probably be too large for me but it’s seconds before Wendy starts sticking pins into me and offering to alter every single component of the dress until it’s a perfect fit. I can also usually collect my altered clothing the very next day. These are just a couple of photos of what I have worn so far.

I had brunch with Elaine at Ashley’s by Living Food

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Previous trips to Earth to Table have seen me chastise my friends who can’t dig into raw food. But I think this mushroom foie gras was pushing it even for me. It was close to ice cold and fell apart at the slightest prodding of a fork. The flax seed cracker was palatable but I really, really didn’t like the sun-dried tomato bread. The texture was limp and spongey with a weird aftertaste. I also felt kind of queasy for the rest of the day. Not bad enough for it to be sick/food poisoning but just a bit weird! Still the place seems really cool and I’d go back except maybe steer clear of their raw food.

That’s all so far, I guess it did still end up being mostly about food but I hope this style of ‘What I did today’ interests some people. I mean I also completed a bunch of errands like updating my ID and going to the dentist but I figured no one’s that interested in my dental hygiene. I’m absolutely loving being home, but by the time this post goes live I will be on the way to the airport/on the way to Japan! So expect lots of posts about that, I’ll really try to do them as I go instead of writing retrospectively. Good night everyone, I need to look fresh for the plane!

samanthawxlow

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