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Monday, March 30, 2009

Meet The Royalties (of the 'Kingdom of Burger')

This is a long overdue post.
Sometimes ago, while we were at Burger King's drive thru, I got bored waiting. I asked Harrison to request for their crowns. He asked why do I need it for? I told him I just wanted it.
When I got it, I made everyone in the car wore it.
Lo and behold... meet the royalties from the land of BURGER.

The King and Queen of BURGER promoting the produce from their faraway land.

And the Princess of BURGER (looking nothing like a burger).
There was no 'Prince' cause he refused to be crowned. He rather be a peasant than to be crowned a silly crown (his words) .
p/s: mom refused to be crowned too until I declared that she'll be my chamber maid if not crowned. She thought it was better to be a Queen than a maid. Wise thought.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Happy Belated Birthday Sweetie Pie!

This is a belated Happy Birthday wishes for one of my 'aya' god-daughter, Princess Thea Wong whose birthday fell on 15th March. Though it may be a little late, it is better late than never...
Sweetie Pie, I've reminded myself to wish you Happy Birthday here way before Uncle Harrison & I went on our holiday but somehow had it slipped off my mind when we got back. Sigh.. old already, cannot depend on memory so much already...
Anyway, you are getting lovelier which each passing day Sweetie. I am sure you had a great birthday filled lots of love from daddi & mommi & everyone who adores you to bits and pieces. Hope you had a great time on your birthday despite of getting a little scared by the sound effect at the Disney on Ice: Princess show.

Day 7 : Bye-Bye Bali

Day 7 was our last day on paradise; the beautiful island of Bali, and back to reality...mundanity, our real world of monotonous activities, which sometimes we do also dunno for what (i.e. work).
No pool in courtyard, no sun-lounging chair, no chauffer, no beach, no life... no everything.. sigh! *sob sob*
After breakfast, we take a look around our blissful villa of the last 4 days for one final time, before we bid farewell to it and the warm & friendly staff in Sun Islands.
We checked in early at Ngurah Rai International Airport at 11:45am for our flight which was scheduled for departure at 1:30pm.

Bye-bye Bali... Thank you for given us a romantic unforgetable 7d/6n in paradise. We had an awesome vacation!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Day 6 - Batu Bulan, Celuk & Ubud (Again)

As we don't have much program on day 6, and we didn't get to see much action (carving and all) or bought much things during the past couple of days (actually, I just wanted something from the silver department), we engaged a private guide who was recommended to us by Josephine, to take us out for a half day tour. He met us punctually at the lobby at 9am and greeted us with a firm hand shake and a self introduction. His name is Meko and he is a pleasant chap.
When we got onto the van, he asked us are there any places in particular we wished to visit/see. We told him that we wished to visit places where we can see people at work carving wood/stone, making silver accesories and weaving crafts.
Our first stop is at a weaving craft center that sells a variety of weaved accessories. Outside the center, there was a group of Balinese ladies sitting under a gazebo showing us, the'jakun' tourist, how a basket ended up being a basket.

(carving each line and curve in deep concentration)

After that, as we were passing thru Batu Bulan, we saw this Uncle carving a stone statue in one of the many stone carving stalls along the road. We got down and watched how it was done. We chatted a little and he told us that it will take approximately 1 week to complete this statue.

(The tools used in stone carving - variety sizes of metal piece)

(the many carved decorative statue - we got one of the mini meditating Buddha piece)

We moved on to our next destination, a silverwares shop in Celuk. Same as the crafting center, they too have a workshop by the side of the shop to demostrate how a piece of silver jewelery is being crafted.

It requires lots of patience to painstakingly stick each & every tiny little pieces of silver ball onto the the bracelet to create a masterpiece. It was so tiny that I can barely see it. I'll definately go 'cock-eye'. From the workshop, we walked over to its retail section and browsed thru thousands of accessories, from belly rings to brooches. A little flower pendant with exquisite workmanship caught my eye. Harrison got it for me as our anniversary present. It was retailed at US$180, but after some bargaining feud, it was mine for only US$75+. Lols... you see la... terrible or not... really kena bargain kuat-kuat one.. otherwise, sure rugi sial... I'll show you a photo of it on my next entry. Forgot to take photo of it.

From silverwares, we proceed to a huge wood carving center that has a great variety of carved items on display - from smallest size to biggest size you can imagine). Harrison loves to look at things like these. How it was done, the process of it. He was very impressed with the workmanship of each of the item. As for me, I am not really a fan of all these stuff. I appreciate the artistic part of it, but the item as a whole, hmm... no thank you. I remembered once I was being dragged by Harrison to visit temples and museums in Bangkok, gosh, I almost died of boredom....lols...

(carving frangipani out of the wood)

(men at work)

This one is an interesting masterpiece. The old man, basket, chicken in the basket, the fruit in the palm, is all carved out of one big piece of wood. Isn't this cool or what? Ihey must have taken a long long time to complete this one.

Meko also took us to one of the art center. Again, no one piece with just leafs, brds & flowers are still amongst the leafs. Sigh.... He then took us to another art center which he claimed to be the biggest. When we arrived, we realised it was the same one that Dana took us to on Day 2. So we quickly cabut. :p
Meko took us to this place for lunch after the art gallery. We were seated upstairs and when I looked down and saw a pool, I thought it must have been those villa hotels below. Found out later that there is no hotel nor villa below. This is pool is provided by the restaurant for its customer. So if we feel like dipping to cool off, we can jump in anytime. (Note to self: next time, wears a bikini beneath when go sight seeing, so can swim while lunch. cool eh?)
(the tranquility that surrounded the double storey restaurant)

(Harrison's fried rice with sate + egg)

(my mee goreng - FOOD!)

After recharging ourselves, we went to a batik center nearby. There, we saw how songket is weaved and how a batik is painted/printed. Not that we dont know la... we Malaysian, of course knows how it was done la.... I've even painted one before long ago. Anyway, we just acted like some ignorant tourist lor, jakun & impressed.... oooh.... ahhhh...wahh....

We finally got back to our hotel at about 3pm. Relax a little, and headed down to Sun Island's spa for a 2 hours massage & body wrap treatment. This was our best massage in comparison to the other two we had. The pressure was strong and yet smooth (or was it cause our skin is smoother now after all the scrubs? lols). After the massage, the masseurs applied some 'galanga' treatment on our body and wrapped us like a dumpling (ham yuk chung) like that. One thing for sure is, Harrison is definately getting a hang to these kind of pampering cause I can hear him snoring away. Later, I warned him that he is only allowed to go to these kind of pampering only with his WIFE. Not with any other people. He laughed..... I kinda regret to introduce him to all these cause I wont be able to 'sapu' all his sessions again from now on. I rememberd how I ended up with 4 sessions (supposely 2 sessions per person) of tender loving pampering session when we were at Tj Jara couple of years ago for a 3d/2n breakaway...
Back in the villa, Harrison caught me in photo relaxing in the courtyard reading a book, enjoying the sun & fresh air. How I wished for such a courtyard back home here. Do you think it will attract some perverts with binoculars across the street if it is here in Malaysia? Sigh... different mind set. Culture shocking.

Later that night, again we walked 400m to Made's Warung. This was how it look at night. Nice atmosphere huh.... This time, Harrison tried the Nasi Campur Special. It is something similar to my Biasa one, except it is of much bigger portion and have a few pieces of prawns. We stayed for awhile after dinner, enjoyed the atmosphere, chit chatted a little. This was our last night in Bali. Sigh, how reluctant to go home (that's for me).
After dinner, we took a slow walk another 100m away, then walked 500m back to our villa and called it a night.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Day 5 - Diving, Warung Made & Kudeta

I went off diving at Nusa Dua on a bright, sunny & cloudless morning while Harrison still in his dreamland. At this particular beach in Nusa Dua, they have many types of water sports ranging from para-sailing to flying fish. My heaven.

(I did this once in Penang. Really, it is not scary at all. The view from up there is really nice.)

(Getting all ready to plunge into the deep blue sea and be overwhelmed by the feeling of freedom.)

This has only been my 7th dive I think, and my last dive was in 2002, 7 freaking years ago. Despite of the refresher course which I took two weeks prior to our trip, I felt nervous. The undercurrent were pretty strong. Being a newbie, I find it rather difficult to keep my buoyancy right. At one time, I was brushed against some corals and got cuts on my thigh.

Other than the strong current, the visibility were pretty poor too, probably just about 2m the most. And my darn mask kept fogging up which was making it worst. Need to constantly clear my mask every minute (note to self: to buy anti fog gel next time). Despite of everything, did managed to spot a 'lion fish' and some 'clown fish' and even caught one in one of the many blur photos I took. Can you spot the clown fish admist the anemone???
After the dive, back in the villa, I took a dip in the pool to cool off the heat, showered and off we went to this famous restaurant called Made's Warung. The guard at our villa told us that it is 200m away. After walking for about 200m, it is still no where in sight. A kind shopkeeper told us that it is another 200m away approximately... kena conned... but it is worth it la... the food is yummy and the prices are reasonable.
(Entrance of the Warung)
(the interior of Made's warung. very baba-nyonya ish..)

(the courtyard of Made's Warung which will be filled with candle lit tables at night)

(This will be mine. Nasi campur biasa. I told you I eat a lot on holidays. Harrison ordered a Nasi Goreng Seafood which we forgotten to snap any photo of.)

We also ordered some 'sate babi'. Yes, you heard me right, babi, *oink oink*. They served pork everywhere in Bali as majority of them are Hindus. We even have yummy crispy bacon for breakfast. Oh, note the heart shaped cucumber which Harrison insisted to snap a photo of. Talking about being corny...he beats us all!

(A single lily stood strong in a little pond in front of the warung.)
After our heavy lunch, we called for the bill and took a slow walk back to our villa which is 400m away (now we know). It is just a long stretch of road with little shops lined along both sides of the road selling beach wears, accessories, decorative items and etc. It was nice to peep into these shops thru its windows as we walk passed it to see silly gwailo being slaughtered to pay more than what it's worth. But then again, willing giver, willing taker.

(Finally, back to Sun Islands)

(The miserable reception which I mentioned in Day 4.)
We lepak-ed in our villa after lunch till the driver from the spa came for us. We were chaufferred to a spa for our 2 hours treatment which includes a balinese massage, lulur scrub & flower bath. It was awesome. The treatment room for two was a semi outdoor room. It was nice, just a little hot though without the aircond.

After our blissful spa session, we requested the driver to drop us off at Kudeta instead of the villa. Kudeta is the most happening sea front restaurant/bar in Bali. Without a prior reservation, you will never be able to get a table. We have got Dana to RSVP for us couple of days ago. Apparently, according to a friend, Kudeta is a place must not be missed, how very true. Thank you for your recommendation Terence.

(the courtyard of Kudeta)

(me enjoying fresh green olives served - appetizer)

(Enjoy a pre-dinner drink while watching the sunset by the beach)
Actually, this trip is supposed to be our honeymoon. Due to many reasons, shifting of houses, money & etc, we've decided to delay it to January this year (6 months after our wedding). Then we postponed it to early February instead so that we can take advantage of the long CNY holidays. And from February, we got it postponed once again without having any dates fixed cause PP's was in very bad stage and I don't want to be away during those critical times. That's the reason of our long delayed honeymoon. 9 months after wedding. (we are married for 9 months already??? it certainly dont feel that long.)
(this place have all the ingredients for romantic atmosphere - candle light dinner, beautiful sunset, long sandy beach & etc)
It was finally settled for 9th ~ 15th March. I told Harrison it is no longer a honeymoon, sourmoon more like it. He laughed and said we will bring out own honey la... lols... dunno what he means anyway... Only when it was nearer to the dates that we realised that the holiday falls on our ROM 1st year anniversary... what a coincident. So, this whole Kudeta thingy is just so we have some nice place to celebrate the occasion.
(cheers for a good year and more good years to come!)

(awesome right?)

(the sky changes to blue when the sun submerged entirely at the horizon)