Sunday, December 16, 2007

CAK' TU' CI Menado Restaurant in Jakarta

My friend Tommy brought our group to this Menado restaurant in South Jakarta, somewhere close to Terminal Blok M. The place is called CA'TU'CI, the shortform of 3 favourite fish from Menado area which is CAKalang (I think tuna), TUde (I dunno whats this) and oCI (I dunno too). I think the cook is from North Sulawesi with very hot and spicy food. I am not really into really hot stuff but I really enjoyed the food, with the help of at least 3 bottles of water down my throat.

I guess the Menado grilled fish (ikan bakar) is the most popular here, and I can't really remember the name of the other dishes. All I know is that most of them are really hottttttt

Monday, December 10, 2007

Taman Mini Indonesia

TMI houses local architecture from all the provinces in Indonesia all in one place. Here you will see some photos on the houses from Sumatera, Jawa, Bali, Sulawesi etc.. and a building similar to the one at Disneyland.. I'm not sure why its there actually....

For more details please visit this site

Friday, December 07, 2007

Bdg-Jkt by train

Bandung to Jakarta Gambir station station with Keretaapi Argo Gede will take you about 3 hours. I think it would be faster by road but you can't beat the view here especially as the train travels next to the paddy field and on the matchstick bridges thats connects the hills. The train is modern and comfortable, as long as you get the Argo Gede train you should be OK

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The Day Hang Tuah Walked Through My Door - by Adlan Benan Omar

Everyone knows who Hang Tuah is. Everyone knows that he was a great warrior, that he was loyal to his king, that he fought and defeated Hang Jebat in a gruelling duel. But I knew more about Hang Tuah than anyone else. No... I didn't read more than anyone else (how much more could a twelve-year-old have read anyway?). I knew more about Hang Tuah because he came to live with us a few months ago.

Yes, you heard me right. Hang Tuah did come to live with me and my family. Abah took him home one day. He had found the old man walking around the local playground one evening, while he was out jogging. It was getting dark and the old man had no place to go, so we took him in. Mak was not too happy about that, she thought the old man looked crooked. He was dirty and he didn't wear shoes. Mak said that people might think our family has gone weird. Abah just laughed. "Kasihan ...dia orang tua," he said.

My friends didn't believe me at first. They thought I was dreaming, or making things up, or just plain lying. Azraai said that the old man was an alien from Mars and not Hang Tuah. Eqhwan laughed at me and said that either I or the old man must be mad. Anuar said that if Hang Tuah was still alive I wouldn't be able to understand what he said because he spoke classic Malay like in the hikayats. Hilmi (our local school's smart alec) tried to explain to me that the Melaka Empire was no more and that Hang Tuah was just a legend. He said that if Hang Tuah was still alive he would be at least five and a half centuries old and the latest edition of the Guinness Book of World Records stated that the oldest man in the world lived only to 120 years. Only Farid sympathised with me... and that was because he had an imaginary friend whom he always took along to play marbles with us.

I really didn't care what they said. I knew that old man was Hang Tuah. I know because I asked him myself. The morning after we took the old man in, Mak asked me to wake him up for breakfast. I went to the spare room and found that he was already awake. He was sitting on the edge of the bed with a blue batik bundle on his lap.
"Jemput makan, Tok," I said, politely.
"Terima kasih," he said.
I was curious, so I asked, "Apa dalam buntil tu Tok?"
"Barang Tok... barang orang miskin," he replied.
Then he opened it up slowly. I saw him fiddle for something, then he took out a long keris with an ivory sheath. It was at least a foot long and studded with jewels.
"Ini keris Taming Sari," said the old man.
I snickered, "He! He! He!". I thought the old man was joking. Everyone knew that Taming Sari belonged to Hang Tuah and that it must have disappeared with its master.
The old man looked up at me. His eyes stared into mine. I felt a little queasy at that. His expression changed, he began to look angry. Suddenly his eyes drooped and he looked more hurt than angry.
"Kenapa cucu gelak?" he asked.
"Tak ada kenapa," I answered, a little frightened.
"Tok tahu, cucu ingat Tok bergurau." I kept quiet.
He began again, "Inilah keris Taming Sari yang sebenar. Ini keris Tok sendiri."
"Kalau begitu Tok ni tentulah..."
"Hang Tuah," he interjected, "nama Tok ialah Hang Tuah."
"Tapi Hang Tuah sudah mati."
He laughed, "Tidak, Tok belum mati. Tapi Tok sudah tua..."
"Berapa umur Tok?" I questioned.
"540 tabun."

Mak didn't really like Tok Tuah. But she didn't say anything when he just stayed on and on in the house. She didn't say a word when Abah and I took him to Hankyu Jaya to get some new clothes. She just kept quiet when Tok Tuah joined us to watch TV in the living room after dinner. I told her (and Abah) that the old man said that his name was Hang Tuah. She wrinkled her face (and Abah just laughed).

It was a Wednesday night and RTM had a slot then called "Teater P. Ramlee". It so happened that they were showing Phani Majumdar's "Hang Tuah". P. Ramlee, so young and thin, acted as the hero and the late Haji Mahadi was Sultan Mansor Shah.
When Jebat got killed, Tok Tuah pipped in, "Tidak langsung macam tu..."
Abah stared at Tok Tuah. Mak stared at Tok Tuah. I too, stared at Tok Tuah.
"Aku sudah tua masa tu, Jebat muda lagi. Jebat kuat. Dia sepak aku hingga aku tertiarap, kemudian aku berguling. Aku himpit dia. Aku kata sama dia 'baik sajalah kau mengalah'. Apa gunanya kita dua bersaudara bergaduh?"
Mak started to look worried again.
"Jebat tak mati."
Abah looked surprised. He said, "Habis tu, apa jadi pada dia?"
Tok Tuah said, "Aku tak mahu Sultan bunuh dia. Aku tahu Sultan zalim. Jadi, aku sorokkan dia di Ulu Melaka. Macam Tun Perak sorokkan aku masa aku difitnahkan. Lepas Melaka kalah dengan Portugis, Jebat ikut aku merantau."
I said, "Bila Jebat mati?"
Tok Tuah laughed, "Jebat belum mati. Baru tahun lepas aku jumpa dia. Dia meniaga di Kedah."
"Meniaga?" I said.
"Ya, Jebat duduk di Kulim. Dia meniaga kereta. Apa tu? Kereta 'second-hand' kata orang. Proton, Honda dan Nissan. Laku jualannya. Banyak orang beli."

One day, I took Tok Tuah on a walk around KL. He got bored just sitting in our small bungalow in Bukit Bandar Raya. So after school, we took the mini-bus to Central Market. Tok Tuah really enjoyed the walk. "Banyaknya orang..." he wondered. We ate at McDonald's. He didn't like the cheeseburger (well, he didn't like the cheese, though he loved the burger itself). After lunch, we went to Muzium Negara.

I showed him the frieze of a young Hang Tuah which was sculpted by an Englishwoman in the 1950s. It showed a handsome Hang Tuah in 'Baju Melayu' and 'samping'. He was holding Taming Sari in his hand.
"Siapa tu," Tok Tuah asked.
"Itu Tok-lah. ltulah orang putih gambarkan sebagai Hang Tuah. Hensem, kan?"
Tok Tuah chuckled, "Apa tulisan atas tu?"
"Ta' Melayu Hilang di-Dunia. Eh, takkan Tok tak ingat? Itu kan Tok yang cakap dulu?"
He kept quiet. Slowly he mumbled, "Ta' Melayu Hilang di-Dunia? Tak ingat pun."
Suddenly, he started, "Oh! Bukannya Ta' Melayu Hilang di-Dunia. Silap tu. Tok tak pernah cakap macam tu..."
"Habis tu?" I asked.
"Masa tu Tok tengah pergi masjid untuk sembahyang Maghrib. Isteri Tok ikut sekali. Dia tengah ambil air sembahyang di tepi perigi, kemudian kakinya tergelincir. Dia terjatuh masuk. Orang ramal pun menjerit-jerit sebab perigi itu dalam. Apa lagi, Tok pun terjunlah untuk selamatkan dia. Isteri Tok bukan sebarang orang, namanya Tun Sa'odah, anak Bendahara Tun Perak."
"Kemudian?" I urged.
"Bila Tok bawak dia naik, Temenggung Tun Mutahir ketawa. Katanya, Tok sayang betul pada isteri Tok. Tok pun jawab, "Mestilah... Ta' Isteriku Hilang di-Telaga. Jadi, mungkin orang silap dengar...!"

Tok Tuah stayed with our family for more than six months. He stayed at home in the first few weeks but he felt guilty not doing anything to contribute. So, one morning, he followed Abah to work. Abah was manager of a factory in Sungai Buluh which made video tapes and CDs. They needed a new 'jaga' or watchman. Tok Tuah got the job. Abah said, "Who better to guard us than the great Malay admiral Hang Tuah?"
The workers got along well with him. Amin, Abah's driver, said that Tok Tuah told them lots of funny jokes about Sultan Mansor of Melaka and his fifteen wives. Tok Tuah also got to know Rajalinggam, the sweeper, who he said reminded him of Mani Purindan, the father of Bendahara Tun Ali. Like Rajalinggam, Mani Purindan too came from Tamil Nadu and cooked delicious dhal curry.

One morning, my teacher at school said, "Tomorrow I want you all to bring a model of an old artefact. Then I want you all to explain its importance in front of the whole history class."
Hilmi (always the teacher's pet) spent days working on a matchstick model of the Kuala Lumpur Railway Station. Azraai decided to build a spaceship instead. Eqhwan bought Anuar's origami keris for fifteen dollars and brought that to school. Farid asked his imaginary friend to draw a picture of Mel Gibson as Sir William Wallace. I? Well, I just brought Tok Tuah along.
My teacher was flabbergasted. She said, "Why have you brought this 'jaga' along?"
I smiled, "He's not just a 'jaga'. He's the great warrior Hang Tuah!"
My teacher said, "I'll call your father and tell him you're playing jokes in class."
"Please, Cikgu. Just listen to what he has to say," I insisted.

Tok Tuah stood in front of the class. He coughed. My teacher sighed. I smiled. My friends sneered. "Assalamualaikum," he said. "Wa'alaikum Salam," we answered.
Tok Tuah began his speech. He started out by saying that the Melaka we read about in the history books was very different from the real Melaka. He explained how the Sultan used to let anyone come to the palace with any complaints at all, and he would settle it there and then. He told us that he and his four friends used to go on tours to Pahang and Terengganu and Ujung Tanah, even to Siam, on great galliards with five big sails. He described to us that Melaka had 120,000 citizens, each of whom had land and houses of their own and that no beggars were allowed to go even a day without food and shelter. He mimicked Sultan Mansor's snarl, and Tun Perak's twitching handlebar moustaches and Jebat's swaggering walk. Finally, he told us how Melaka got corrupted by its wealth and warned us not to do the same now.
That day, Tok Tuah got a standing ovation. Even Teacher clapped. I? I got an 'A' for History.
Tok Tuah died seven weeks after that. He was 542 years old. It was during the Puasa month and he took the LRT from Sungai Buluh. He wanted to stop and buy some sweetmeats (he absolutely loved 'pau kaya'). When he arrived at Chow Kit station, he collapsed on the platform with a massive stroke.

They rushed him in an ambulance to Kuala Lumpur General Hospital but he was already gone. He didn't feel a thing. We buried him at Ampang Cemetery, right across from the grave of Tan Sri P. Ramlee, who played him in that film. I visit the grave sometimes just to tell him that I'm now a lecturer in Malay History at Leyden University.

I still remember the day he walked through my door. It's as if it was just yesterday. Ah, well...
By the way, did I tell you I met King Henry VIII whilst I was studying in Cambridge? He worked as a night porter at my college. But that, as they say, is a different story.

from :

Friday, October 19, 2007

China trip during Ramadhan - Day 5

Early morning ride to Jinan Airport for flight to Shanghai Hongqiao airport, can't resist taking the Maglev (just for the thrill of travelling on land at over 400km/hr) to Shanghai Pudong Airport.

Long wait at the airport for the MAS flight back to Kuala Lumpur

Thursday, October 18, 2007

China trip during Ramadhan - Day 4

MMM... on average the Shandong people are quite tall. Lets visit the Jinan tech park and have a chat with the authorities and the Mayor of Jinan.

A mosque at Jinan. Have a look at the simple stool for those who cant stand for too long.

The area for ablution and old fashion toilet stalls.

Visiting Baotu Spring park, a long history of over 2,600 years.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

China trip during Ramadhan - Day 3

After another meeting at Youngman then its off to Hangzhou Xiaoshan airport for the next leg to Jinan.

Arrived late at the Shandong Hotel in Jinan so I better order my sahur before I doze off to sleep.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

China trip during Ramadhan - Day 2

Early morning journey to Jinhua by bus, check into World Trade Centre Hotel.

Plant visit to Youngman factory

Dinner hosted by Mr "Youngman" himself.

Monday, October 15, 2007

China trip during Ramadhan - Day 1

Arrival at Shanghai Pudong Airport and take the minibus to Ramada Pudong just next to the airport.

Straight away to Shanghai City on the Maglev train, note the speed at 430km/hr. Night cruise along the river.. really wide river that is.

This is the Orient Pearl Tower in Shanghai. The queue to go up the tower stretches over hundreds of meter all around the base of the tower.

This is the menu and my meal for sahur :)

Friday, October 05, 2007

Bandung to Jakarta by train

the train is Argo Gede, nice view, scary thin bridges, green paddy fields :)

Monday, October 01, 2007


0. Allah God*
1. Ar Rahman The All-Compassionate
2.Ar Rahim The All-Merciful
3.Al Malik The Absolute Ruler/The King
4.Al Quddus The Pure One/The Holy
5.As Salaam The Source of Peace/The Peace
6.Al Mu'min The Inspirer of Faith/The Faithful
7.Al Muhaymin The Guardian/The Protector
8.Al'Aziz The Victorious/The Mighty
9.Al Jabbar The Compeller/The Repairer
10.Al Mutakabbir The Greatest/The Self-Expanding
11.Al Khaliq The Creator
12.Al Bari' The Maker of Order/The Maker From Nothing
13.Al Mushawwir The Shaper of Beauty/The Fashioner
14.Al Ghaffar The Forgiving/The Absolver
15.Al Qahhar The Subduer/The Dominant
16.Al Wahhab The Giver of All/The Bestower
17.Ar Razzaq The Sustainer/The Provider
18.Al Fattah The Opener/The Opener of the Heart
19.Al'Aliim The Knower of All/The Omniscient
20.Al Qaabidh The Constrictor/The Restrainer
21.Al Baasith The Reliever/The Spreader
22.Al Khaafid The Abaser
23.Ar Rafi' The Exalter
24.Al Muizz The Bestower of Honors
25.Al Muzill The Humiliator
26.As Sami' The Hearer of All
27.Al Bashiir The Seer of All
28.Al Hakam The Judge
29.Al Adil The Just
30.Al Lathif The Subtle One
31.Al Khabir The All-Aware
32.Al Haliim The Forebearing
33.Al Aziim The Magnificent/The Supreme Glory
34.Al Ghafur The Forgiver and Hider of Faults
35.Ash Syakur The Rewarder of Thankfulness/The Most
36.Al 'Aliy The Highest
37.Al Kabiir The Greatest
38.Al Hafiiz The Preserver
39.Al Muqiit The Nourisher
40.Al Hassiib The Accounter
41.Al Jalil The Mighty/The Sublime
42.Al Kariim The Generous
43.Ar Raqiib The Watchful One
44.Al Mujib The Responder to Prayer
45.Al Waasi' The All-Comprehending/The All-Comprehensive
46.Al Hakim The Perfectly Wise
47.Al Wadud The Loving One
48.Al Majiid The Majestic One/The Glorious
49.Al Ba'ith The Resurrector
50.Ash Shahiid The Witness
51.Al Haqq The Truth
52.Al Wakil The Trustee
53.Al Qawi The Possesor of All Strength
54.Al Matin The Forceful One
55.Al Waali The Governor/The Nearest Friend
56.Al Hamiid The Praised One
57.Al Muhshi The Appraiser
58.Al Mubdi' The Originator
59.Al Mu'id The Restorer
60.Al Muhyi The Giver of Life
61.Al Mumit The Taker of Life
62.Al Hayy The Ever-Living One
63.Al Qayyum The Self-Existing One
64.Al Waajid The Finder
65.Al Maajid The Glorious
66.Al Wahid The Only One
67.Al Ahad The One
68.Ash Shamad The Satisfier of All Needs
69.Al Qadir The All Powerful
70.Al Muqtadir The Creator of All Power7
71.Al Muqaddim The Expediter/The Foremost
72.Al Muakhkhir The Delayer
73.Al Awaal The First
74.Al Aakhir The Last
75.Azh Zhahir The Manifest One
76.Al Bathin The Hidden One
77.Al Wali The Protecting Friend
78.Al Muta'aali The Supreme One
79.Al Barr The Doer of Good/The Righteous
80.At Tawwib The Guide to Repentance
81.Al Muntaqim The Avenger
82.Al'Afu The Forgiver
83.Ar Rauuf The Clement/The Kind
84.Al Malikul Mulk The Owner of All/The King of Supreme Dominion
85.Zul Jalali Wal Ikram The Lord of Majesty and Bounty
86.Al Muqsit The Equitable One
87.Al Jami' The Gatherer
88.Al Ghani The Rich One
89.Al Mughni The Enricher
90.Al Mani' The Preventer of Harm
91.Ad Daar The Creator fo the Harmful
92.An Nafi' The Creator of Good
93.An Nur The Light
94.Al Hadi The Guide
95.Al Badi' The Originator/The Incomparable/The First Cause
96.Al Baqi' The Everlasting One
97.Al Warith The Inheritor of All
98.Al Rashid The Righteous Teacher/The Unerring
99.As Shabur The Patient One

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Bdg-Jkt trip

Ignore the date on the photo, the camera is playing tricks on me again. Try the train from Jkt-Bdg, the view is awesome and the thrill of the train going over bridges that looked soooo thin can make your heart tremble :). Enjoy.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Dinner at Damansara Seafood Village

Wanna try seafood without breaking a hole in d wallet? Try Damansara Seafood Village, price is affordable, you get fresh seafood (from Pulau Ketam), and its tasty too... not forgetting the atmosphere is a relaxing one and the Staff are friendly too. you can have fish, crab, prawn, clams etc, all fresh and alive (they kept it at the back). For the kids they can play with the little fish in the small stream at the corner of the joint so that they won't be a nuisance to us as we enjoy our food :)

1067, Jalan Jenjarum
SS23 Damansara Jaya
47400 Petaling Jaya

Tel: 03-7803 1832 for reservations

By the way, Patrick Teoh is also involved here. Read his blog here.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Park Sung

Our friend from South Korea, Mr Park Sung was in town recently with his wife. We had dinner together with my family in Madam Kwan Bangsar



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