Apr 29, 2010

Life of a Trishaw Peddler

"A picture speaks a thousand words." Anonymous

Photo 1

Photo 2

This is my entry for Thursday Challenge: "FACE" (Potraits, Self-Potraits, Happy Faces, Emotions).

Another entry for My World Tuesday. For more entries around the world, click here.

A food for thought for Wordless Wednesday. For more entries, click here.

Amazing WildLife at Secret Garden 1 Utama

In view of the environmental conservation, rooftop gardens had gained great popularity over the years. These gardens offer a great way to escape and relax ourselves from the concrete jungle. "Secret Garden" which is located in One Utama Shopping Complex, at Bandar Utama Damansara, Petaling Jaya, Malaysia, is a treasure trove of various plants from different regions that holds this concept.

In this post, I would to write a short preview for the upcoming post Secret Garden.

Opening Days: Saturday and Sunday
Opening hours: 10am - 6am

Upon arrival, we are greeted by lovely and refereshing flowers. The environment there was splendid. Being there, we've managed to snap a few pictures of the wonderful creatures.

Many authors and bloggers alike had writen about this beautiful garden but not many had talked about the amazing small wildlifes found there. Therefore this would be dedicated entirely to the lovely creatures.

The butterfly flew all the way up to the rooftop. It was 5 storeys high. We managed to capture this beautiful butterful and the best was it was laying eggs. What a lovely suprise! We didnt know until we previewed all the photo in the computer.


A bright coloured dragonfly. Any idea what genus and species this wonderful creature belongs to?

This little "guy" had just woke up from his sleep. It was so amazing. We watch it crawled out from the shell.

Special thanks to Eric Choo for the photos contributed to this post.

This is my entry for the weekly meme, Camera Critters. For more critters around the world, click here.

Camera Critters

This is also my entry for the My World Tuesday. For more views of My World click here.

Apr 23, 2010

Dark Dark skies

Not a very sharp photo. But captured it because i think the moon and sky look quite interesting. :-) Think it have a certain mysterious feel like in those dark dark vampire movies....

This is my entry for the exicting Skywatch Friday. For more mesmerizing photos of skies all around the world, click here.

Apr 22, 2010

Satay Capitol and Prawn Noodles

" Sometimes one of the greatest delights of life is food! "

During travel, it's nice to experience the culture and authentic cuisines found in different parts of the world. I went to Malacca town, Malacca, Malaysia few months ago for a two day trip. It was an exciting food tour. I got to try some of the town 's specialty. Had a quick lunch in the afternoon. We had prawn noodles at the town center.

Prawn noodles

A little spicy. Nevertheless, most locals think that it is not spicy after all. It adds flavour to the noodles and soup.

During the night, we went to the famous Satay Capitol.

Front view of the Restaurant

It is often crowded especially during the weekends where poeple from all over Malaysia as well as tourists from Singapore and Europe flock to the restaurant.

I found some European backpackers on holiday to Langkawi and had dropped by Malacca to try this gastronomical delight. They said they found out about it in the Food Guide Book.

We started queing around 6 pm and had managed to get a place in the restaurant at around 7.30 pm. Considered lucky and pretty fast actually!! Sometimes you may not even get a place.

Beware of imposters!! Shop owner reminding visitors that they are the only restaurant and there's no other branches!!

Authentic and one of its kind, the original restaurant owner (Maybe grandpa or great grandpa of today's owner?) was the founder of this special cuisine. It had been more than 3 generations of family business . Nevertheless, there are no branch in Malacca or anywhere else.

A worker ensuring that the sause is mixed well

What is so special about this cuisine lies in the gravy. It is a special sause made of peanuts and other flavourings (not sure, secret recipe of the owner). After we were seated, the worker prepared the pots and poured in the sause. When the time was just right, other ingredients and peanuts were added into the sause.

While waiting for the gravy to boil, we went to get our selections. There are many choices available, mostly of fishballs, dices of meat, sausages. All ingredients are very fresh. These are inserted into sticks.

Our favourite! MYR 80 cents (RM 0.80) per stick for all types. Those in plates are slightly more expensive, around RM 3-5.

In Asian countries especially the Chinese community, they always believe in Yin and Yang balance. Therefore, because the sause may be heaty, so the owner provided customers some cucumbers to cool down our system.

After the sause is boiled, put your choices of sticks in and wait till it is cooked.

Ready to eat! Yummy!!!

Usually, towards the end of your meal the owner will offer you these delicious abalone, prawns and seafood at the same price of MYR 80 cents.

The owner greeted us and we had a short chat. He was very kind and friendly. He gave us some specially brewed coffee of his own collection. That was sometimes New, a very aromatic coffee indeed.

For those who had never tried, it is definetely something not to be missed.

This is my post for Thursday Challenge for Fun and Learning: "FOOD" (Meals, Restaurants, Eating, Vegetables, Unusual Foods, Cooking, BBQs,...).

For more posts and food around the world click here.

Apr 18, 2010

Malacca the Historical Town

Photo of Christ Church, Malacca Town, Malacca, Malaysia

Malacca is the third smallest Malaysian state, after Perlis and Penang. The capital of this state is Malacca town. A town rich in culture, this historical town centre has been listed as UNESCO World Heritage Site since 7, July 2008.

Malacca has a population of 759, 000, being composed of

Malays (57%)
Chinese (32%)
Indians, including the Chitty people: minority
Kristang, people with partial Portuguese ancestry: small community
Dutch Eurasian, Eurasians with Dutch ancestry: minority

This is my entry for the fun and wonderful weekly meme, Scenic Sunday. To participate or view other pictures around the world, click on the icon below.

Scenic Sunday

This is also my entry for My World Tuesday. To view other participants click here or the icon below.

Dong Zhen Temple 2010

This is a photo of the main hall of Dong Zhen Temple, at Jenjarom, Selangor, Malaysia during the Chinese lunar new year. It is a buddhist temple beautifully decorated with fresh flowers and lanterns during the Chinese New Year. Various activities, performances were also held as thousands of visitors enjoy the festive season.

For more post of Mellow Yellow Monday, click here or the following icon.


Apr 17, 2010

Miao Miao!!

Photograph contributed by Eric Choo
Location: Straits of Malacca, Malaysia.

This is my entry for Camera Critters. For more pictures, please visit Misty dawn's Camera Critters, or click on the following image

Camera Critters

Apr 12, 2010

Skywatch Friday - Sunset at Putrajaya

Beautiful scenery. A photo captured at the lake near the 2nd International Putrajaya Hot Air Balloon Festival site.

Click here to view other participants of skywatch friday: -

Apr 11, 2010

Putrajaya Hot Air Balloon Fiesta Part 2

The Hot Air Balloon Process

This is my entry for That's My World Tuesday Season 2 Episode 26. To view what others have in their world, please visit here.

Apr 7, 2010

2nd Putrajaya International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta 2010 (Part 1)

Event: 2nd Putrajaya International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta 2010
Venue: Monumen Alaf baru in Precinct 2, Putrajaya

Date: 18th -21th March 2010
Time: ~ 7am to ~ 9pm

A photo I took during the Fiesta

It was an excitement filled day for me at the Putrajaya International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta. This was my first year being at the carnival. When we arrived at around 9 am the crowd was already huge and it was difficult to find parking. Colourful eye-catching balloons adorned the sky marking the first showcase of the hot air balloons from various participating countries across the globe. Participating countries are Japan, Belgium, Switzerland, New Zealand, South Korea, The Netherlands, the United States, France and Malaysia. Some of the very unique designs include a pair of floating levi's jeans, the Darth Vader of Star Wars as well as the yummy orange fruit shaped balloon.

Showcase of Hot Air Balloon from different countries

Area of the Hot Air Balloon Rides for the Public

The inagural event attracted international tourists and local spectators from all walks of life. This event promised activities for the entire family ranging from children inflatable playground, sphere rides, water ball rides, bargains and colouring competition for kids.

Apart from that, there are other ongoing side programmes, such as photography competition for the photography enthusiasts, remote controlled aircraft display, paramotor showcare, helicopter rides, auto show and petting zoo.

At the carnival

Families were seen taking in the sights and some had picnics at the spot. Some preferred to enjoy the view instead on a beautiful Saturday morning.

The beautiful park surrounding the Fiesta ground

There was 5 hot air balloon opened to the public for thethered rides that floated 20 m (according to the official site) above ground. We started queing for the tickets at 2.30pm. Although the ticket selling booth only opens at 6pm, there was already a crowd. By 4pm, the amount of people lining up was overwhelming. Tickets were also limited per day.

The crowd builds in. It was a terrible long queue

We took turns queing. I got to walk around the fiesta and took these interesting photos.

Spectators and photography enthusiasts gathered around the Hot Air Balloon area to take photos of unique hot air balloon during the showcase of balloons from participating countries.

I got a chance to get close to the balloon and took a photo of how it looks inside.

Here's a look of the basket before attaching to the parachute

A group of friends enjoying the ride

The fan used to inflate the balloon.

The team setting up the Hot Air Balloon here.

Stainless steel fuel tank wrapped in red insulating covers


Found a plate of roti canai on the burner. Someone forgot their lunch?

Finally, it was our turn after 7 hours (2.30pm - 9.30pm, delayed to 9.30 due to technical difficulties) of painstaking queuing; we got into our hot air balloon basket. It was important to balance the weight of the basket to maintain the hot air balloon at ground level. One in one out, I climbed into the basket as one particiapnt came out while my friend waited to go in as another came out after me. It was hot as the fire was ignited from the burner to induce hot air into the balloon. Nearly burned the head of my tall friend. Just kidding, but the heat felt the greatest for him as he was so close to the fire on top of his head.

As it rises, there was this sudden adrenaline rush. Then, the balloon stopped. We got to experience a bird's eye view. The scenery of Putrajaya at night was breathtaking. Nevertheless, it was too fast. In 10 minutes we were back to ground. Strangely enough, it didnt felt vert high. I feel like as if I was standing from a fifth floor condominium balcony.

Wish we sustained longer in the air. Only regret was there were these strings attached. How I wished that I could cut it and set my balloon free flying higher and higher into the sky.

What we saw from our balloon

Anyways, it costs RM 10 for adults and RM 5 for children at two sessions - 8am to 11am and 6pm to 9pm. For those wondering how heavy can the balloon load at any one time, a maximum of 200 kg include the pilot was allowed. So, you can go up as a couple, or a group of three (combination of three girls, or parent with one or two young kids)

For those who missed the boat but still wanted to try out for the rides next year, here are some useful tips:


Be early:

Normally, hot air balloon enthusiats will start queuing at 5am for the 1st session. The crowd for the 2nd session starts at 2.30pm.

Bring an umbrella, cap, or fan along. Maybe even a portable chair can be handy?

If you missed the first session, the second one is going to be extremely hot. The area for queing was not shaded. By the time we arrived, the tickets for first session were already sold out. We strated queiuing for tickets at 2.30pm and endured a torturous 3 and a half hour wait under the red hot fiery sun. I was pretty lucky tough.. I found a chair!!

Be alert and fast:

There will be two queues, one for the tickets and another for the hot air balloon rides after you bought the tickets. The queue for the hot air balloon ride starts at 6pm. But be elart where the queue starts and you shall start choosing which balloon of the 5 you want to go up in. Remember that the same crowd who bought the ticket, are going for the hot air balloon as well. Or else, suffer the curse of the long queue again!


Beware of night photography!

There were services offered to take photos of you while on the hot air balloon. But they may not be professional photographers although there are in fact using a dslr. I personally had a very bad experience of my first hot air balloon photo. We had paid Rm 25 for our photos taken. Sadly it turned out to be totally black and I meant it literally although it was the best among the 20 pictures taken by the photograher there. We can't see a thing or recognize our faces in the printed 4R photo. Absolutely terrible! Nonetheless, we were cool anyways as it was for charity. Otherwise, the day photography was of acceptable quality.

Do not cut queue or help to cut queue!

We all learnt good manners and civic mindedness in school. While we were queuing, so many had approached us asking for help to buy them one or two tickets. We just couldnt do it. Think about, the rest of the people behind us who endured the hot sun for 4 hours and ended up without tickets. Are we really doing a favour or causing misery to so many others? Tickets are limited per day.

There was this young mother with two kids who had not only cut in once but twice. Once when buying the ticket and second time during the queue for the hot air balloon ride. It cause a commotion among the crowd. Heated arguments broke in. The worst was she insisted she was right in front of her kids, reason being she had asked one of the stranger in the front row to buy her tickets. Likewise, she shall be queuing right behind her ignoring the rest of the crowd. Bad example lady! The authories had to come in to settle the dispute in the end.

Beware of bad weather!

If the weather is not right (raining, going to be heavy rain) maybe you should consider not queuing tickets or even buy them? There are friends of mine who were there, bought the tickets, but don't have the chance to experience the balloon ride as the weather was just bad. Not sure weather they got their money refunded.

Later at night, there was a marching band performance. The highlight of this spectacular event was the special night-glow display where all the balloons glowed like light bulbs, giving a brilliant display of illuminated light in the sky followed.

Mickey hairbands

Highlight of the night, glowing Hot Air Balloons

The night ended with an array of fireworks display.

Amazing fireworks display.

** Note: I compressed all the pictures so that it could load faster


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