please give this to Natasha..

I bought a new set of cleaning tools – a mop and a broom. I wanted to get The Magic Mop but it was not on discount. To pay MYR 100 was breaking the bank even though the saleslady bragged about it being imported from Korea. I was not ready to bestow upon Natasha such fancy gifts. Not yet.

I cleaned my old set of plastic dishes, plates, cups and utensils.Mr Husband collected our old rugs and dusted it evenly – he bought new bed sheets though. I think I almost had everything covered and finally said to Mr Husband, “please give all of these to Natasha”

It’s been just over 13 weeks now of me having to share Mr Husband with his new commitment. His 3rd serious commitment.The first being his mom, second being me and now… we have this Natasha in the picture. He has also been bringing our son to see Natasha and well.. kids always love new things, atmosphere, people – everything is great with Natasha.

Cantiklah.. bestlah.. 

OK son. I get it. Strange enough I am not jealous. At least I know that if Mr Husband is not with me .. he will be in the warm, cosy arms of Natasha. That he will be safe and happy.

“Would Natasha love this shower foam?” I asked Mr Husband. It was a cheap brand but smelled nice with a rosy scent. Mr Husband rolled his eyes and retorted in his sing-song squeaky tone, “No need, the rent for Natasha Homestay is only MYR150/night … guests can bring their own shower foam and towels” 

OK. FINE. 

But Natasha is faring better as a rental house at the moment. A group of Ayurveda trainees are staying there for the next 3 months. Once the tenancy agreement ends, InsyaAllah Natasha will be home to a group of college students. If they still like Natasha – otherwise we’ll see how it goes.

KUCHING 2015 : A brief itinerary

This week should be a good time to catch up on the journal-ling of my trip to Kuching – my hometown. As this is a yearly trip, I decided to take advantage of my waran hence we traveled as a WPUA customer of #airasia. This means Hot Seats, Free 40 KG baggage each, free 20 KG sports equipment, hot meals with a snack box.

We stayed overnight at my parents house and left early the next morning to Putrajaya Sentral to leave our car there. The overnight parking at Putrajaya Sentral is so much cheaper than the ones they have at the airport. Of course, security is a concern but one just has to pray hard.

Then as usual we took the KL Transit Train and voila within 20 minutes we were already at KLIA2.

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Checking in was a breeze as a WPUA customer. The queue was shorter to begin with. Thankfully, there were no flight delays and the flight attendants were friendly and accommodating despite a full plane since Gawai is just around the corner – what else could I wish for.

I leave you with my itinerary. A brief account of what we did during our stay there. Its different when you travel to a city as a tourist/traveler as opposed to someone who originates from there. We look for different experiences and things. Perhaps you could at least get an idea of where to start.

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More stories to come.

Ho Chi Minh : Duna Hotel

If you pay peanuts, you get peanuts.

(And people would still try to grab more of your peanuts)

Duna Hotel was rated on AirAsiaGo.Com website as a 3 star hotel. When we reached there, it was more like a 2 star hotel. I would not recommend this facility to family with small children. The type of people coming in and out of the hotel are just … suspicious. I almost mistook it as a secret brothel.

We arrived at the hotel by 3 pm and to our dismay our booking was not there. This is so against AirAsia’s secure booking policy. But the top management of the hotel insisted that we didn’t have a room booked with them and said that it was full. Mr Husband was obviously not happy but thankfully remained calm because ‘shit happens’

He tried calling the AirAsia centre using the number given but conveniently no one was there to answer the call.

After much delay, the receptionist suddenly recommended we pay for a room which was miraculously empty because the customer who was supposed to have that room canceled their booking. So we paid because they put a knife to our throats we were tired and at a foreign place.

Duna Hotel also operates a tour agency. It seems that we were not the only unfortunate ones with a horrible money-related experience here. A group of young European tourists were ‘ripped off their money’ when their supposed bus trip route was cancelled. Instead of discussing alternative routes with them, the agency took the liberty to book another route which made stops at places they did not want to go at a cost slightly more. Needs no guessing here that they were horrified. I mean who wouldn’t. One of the more vocal women in the group demanded a refund in exchange they will forget about the whole incident and say nothing more about it. But the hotel decided to play games. They were only going to give back a 50% refund despite the problem rooting from their side. After much bickering and soft threats from the group, the management finally gave in. I have to applaud the beautiful angry lady for she was damn serious when she said in her Russian accent, “If you don’t give us our money back, I will sit here all day and tell all the other tourist what you have done to us!!”

It worked.

After the short drama, we were finally ushered to our room. It was clean and the bed was comfortable. We had horrible next door neighbours though who can’t seem to shut the door properly. Bang sana, bang sini. Then there was the inevitable fireworks and noise after midnight from the public park across the street.

We reconciled our differences with Duna Hotel over free WIFI and breakfast. Although most of the spread was NON-Halal, we were still able to enjoy their simple fried rice with delicious soy sauce, the toast and scrambled eggs and lovely Trung Nguyen coffee. I can’t seem to replicate the same taste coffee at home. Another visit to Ho Chi Minh it seems – at another hotel.

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xin nin kwai le

Its a long weekend for the general public and I am grateful to have at least a full 2 days off as compared to them. Despite not celebrating the Chinese New Year (CNY) .. I am still in a festive mood and trying to enjoy my quality time with my parents and of course Mr Husband and Hazeeq.

I try to make it a habit of visiting my parents at least once a month to see how they’re doing. Occasionally they would drive over to my place for a change of air.

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My neighbour who is celebrating the CNY has been very quiet for the past 2 days. Perhaps they are celebrating elsewhere as we have yet to see the festive side of them for the past 3 years we’ve been living in this neighbourhood. I was looking forward to some lion dance and firecrackers or a glimpse of the lovely sweets and cakes but the gate is closed shut. HUhu.

After 2 full days at my parents house, it’s time to go home. The traffic from their place to ours was incredibly smooth. It was ugly yesterday as stated on the news. We heard that the journey from Malacca to Kelantan took up to 12 hours by car. Say what?? Thank god my parents house is just a football game away. Although it could get up to 5 hours, at most. Yikes.

Prior to reaching home, we stopped at Old Town White Coffee at KIP Mart for lunch. One of those places where people don’t seem to frequent at that hour of the day. We love lengang places. We abhor overcrowded areas unless we have to.

Anyway, HAppy CNY.

Xin nin kwai le.. 

Mr Husband requested a camwhoring session

Yogyakarta : Food And Ole – Ole

To be honest, after the 2nd day I can’t palate another Indonesian dish. I was craving for spaghetti or something cheesy instead.

Mr Husband seems to love its food. He had Lontong, Kueytiew Ala cina, Nasi Daging and such. I could only stomach the Nasi Penyek whole heartedly as it was a familiar taste. The rest of the cuisine was just too spicy for my liking. We did however splurge on their snacks and brought back loads of interesting tidbits as ole-ole (souvenirs). You could try bringing back home its delicious brownies, their local chocolate confectionary branded as MONGGO, bakpia, fruit cake, kerepek pisang sale (pronounced as sah-ley), Good Day instant coffee and of course Indonesia’s pride.. teh kotak or teh botol.

I drank the teh kotak till I pee-d the clear colour of pure spring water. That’s how much I loved it.

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Overall, it was a pleasant and safe trip. We enjoyed it very much. We did not suffer from any food poisoning nor were we at the edge of getting mugged. We did however exceeded our hand luggage 7kg limit and had to ‘rearrange’ a few things in the bag.

Our HotelThe 1-day tour ⌉ Taman Sari & Malioboro ⌉