Saturday, March 20, 2010

Quit here, Go there

I quit my job after working for about 4 months yesterday. I submitted my resignation last Friday and today is my last day. I am going to enter a new venture in my life. *wink*

I would be flying to KL tomorrow afternoon for my entrepreneur training for 2 weeks. The company called me up for training last week. Since I have missed out the first training, I would not want to postpone it further.

It happens that few of my friends from Kuching will be going there the following week. So I would staying over the weekend with them, and we will plan what to do on Saturday. I would be renting an apartment. I would not be alone as I get to know few people from Sarawak would going there too. All about networking! Hope to catch up and get to know them well over there. *wink*

While I am away, we have sorted out the arrangement for the children. Baby Jay will be put at baby sitter’s house and during the weekend, hubby to bring back the baby. Since my princess is bigger, she can follow her uncle and aunties. I would not worry too much about my girl; she is very independent without me. I am just concerned about hubby looking after Baby Jay over the weekend. Sigh!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Stuffed clams

Talking about creativity, my brother-in-law came out with this stuffed clams with minced meat..It is like eating "ngoh hiang" (spring rolls) but a little twist to it. Got to dig the meats from the shells with spoons otherwise you will tend to bite your teeth into the hard shells. Lol!

Guessing game

When people asked about my age, I always asked them to guess my age. Usually they will guess 5 years (the most 8 years younger). Thank god for that! Either they are being modest or I do not look my age at all. Lol!

Or probably the people that I mixed with. Mostly are younger. And not to mention my colleagues who are all born in the 80s (around 1985 - 1986). I look like big sister to them in the office (sometimes they asked advices from me in term of works and relationship), but it does not make me feel older than them.

One afternoon while meeting with a lady customer, she suddenly asked my age. As usual, I never reveal my age willingly, so I asked her to guess. Again she guess I am around 28. Oh well, I just let her believe that I am that age. *wink*

Besides age, I always been mistaken to be a non-Chinese. Few times my customers speaks to me in English or BM when I speak Chinese to them. Only when I show them my name card would they speak Chinese to me. Funny!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Blessed by God

I have been married for almost 6 years. However I have not yet baptised and recognised as a Christian in the eyes of God. Initially I planned to register after we were married, but we never get down to it. I am thankful that hubby did not force me into it, but I wish that one day I would be able to attend my first communion. At least I do not feel awkward when I go to church.

Once a while I do follow hubby to church on Sunday morning but the service is conducted in Chinese. I, being a “banana” do not understand what the priest was trying to convey most of the time. However I decided not to trouble my hubby by going to an English-medium service as hubby is not used to listening to the sermon conducted in English.

So here I am mumbling on my baptism. Must I go to Chinese or English session? Hubby said he will accompany me so I guess he would be choosing to go to the Chinese class. Hmm. As for the kids, we will definitely get them baptised, and go to confirmation class when they are bigger.

I used to read Bible before I were married but never finish it. Every other nights, hubby will read Bible before he goes to sleep. He said he wants to be disciple and be closer to God. I admired his determination. Some day, darling. I will follow God's path. :) He has blessed me with good husband and two lovely children. Thank you so much. Amen.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Korea - Blow our pockets!

This is going to be the last post of my Korea vacation diary. After many days in Korea, I am bored of eating rice, kimchi and cabbages on every meals. By Day 6, almost all the kimchi on our tables were left untouched. Hubby started to complain about missing his Sarawak Kolo Mee and Sarawak Laksa. Lol! And my litle gal also complaining about missing her cartoons as she found that Korean cartoons not interesting (or probably she did not understand what are they talking about). And I have a hunch that I lose some weight too. Probably from eating healthy food and walking every day.

Continue with my Day 6. I would simplified my Day 6 in this post. Basically on Day 6, a lot of damages done. On our pockets. Lol! After Gyeongbokgung Palace, we went to the following places in Seoul.

Ginseng Outlet - we were shown the clips of ginseng and how to difference the good and bad ginseng. Good ginseng must be more than 6 years old (from planting to harvesting). In ginseng outlet, we can choose either to buy ginseng products in capsule, liquid or powder. Both liquid and powder can be used to cook in soup or pour in warm water for drinking. Korean ginseng used world wide as a way to recover health, strengthen body immune, and calming the mind. We bought RM6000 worth of ginseng products there.

Cosmetic Centre - a lot of brands were sold in this outlet. We ended up buying this Feel brands, amounting to more than RM3000! Plus my 2 SILs and MIL, we are spending on its peeling gel, BB cream, toners, emulsion and night cream. And we have many samples as gifts too. *wink*

Amethyst Factory - Korean has one of the five greatest gemestones in the world, i.e. amethyst. Other gemstones include diamond, ruby, emerald and sapphire. I bought one pendant and a ring for myself and a pendant for hubby as a Valentine gift. Overall, I spent nearly RM2400 there. *Faint* Credit card overloaded.

I don't like the necklace. Not pure silver so as you can see, it turns rusty. I need to replace it with my own necklace. No wonder they keep giving us 2 necklaces each there. Lol.

Dong chung ha cho (Chinese caterpillar fungus) herbal shop - here we did not spent since we have bought some ginseng products earlier. In this shop, we were shown experiment on how Chinese caterpillar fungus can seperate sugar contain in a Coke. Impressive! Again, Chinese caterpillar fungus products come in liquid, capsule and powder.

Lee Tai Yuen - It is a street like Petaling Street, selling many souvenirs, clothing, toys, food, and other household products. One interesting marking about this place is most foreigners in Korea are there. So, you would not feel alien there as you could heard people speaking English there.

Melonia ice cream

One thing that I enjoyed tasting in Lee Tai Yuen is this famous melon ice cream. I have a friend who told me he enjoyed eating ice cream during winter because it would not melt and it is not cold to take. Hmm, I don't know. After few bites, I have to forgo finishing up the ice cream.

So, here is the end of my Korea vacation. After 6 hours on the plane, and spending 6 nights there, it is a great winter vacation. Although we find the food not suit to our taste, but we did enjoyed its simple meals and kimchi. Nevertheless, I still like the sunny and warm sun in Malaysia. Miss the beaches, food and people here. Lol!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Korea - A tiring Day 6

Day 6

It has been a tiring week for me so far. One probably because my Baby Jay is sick, he keeps waking up few times at night. Not asking for milk as he dozed off before finishing half of the milk. He just keep crying and even take more than 5 minutes to soothe him down. So, every morning, I did not feel like waking up. One afternoon, I even came back to take a short nap. Lol! That is how my week so far. Must go to bed after finishing up this post.

Going back to 2 weeks ago.....

There are so many things to share with you on Day 6 in Korea. Day 6 is the most tiring day in Korea as we had to visit 7 places in a day. So we started our Day 6 at around 7.30am. We headed for our breakfast and then started our first venue which is the President House and Ancient Palace.

The bus dropped us at this park where not everyone can enter as it was highly guarded by their security. You cannot run or go wandering around otherwise the guard will question you. So, we had to follow our tour guide closely behind.

This mountain resembling a head of dragon. Do you see the two "eyes"? This dragon mountain is believe to proctect the palace during the olden days.

After few snaps at the park, we walked down the alley to Cheong Wa Dae (The Blue House).

Cheong Wa Dae is the presidential residence of Korea. Its signature marking is its blue tiles. We did not tour Cheong Wa Dae, just few snaps in front of the guard house. Lol!

The Gyeongbokgung Palace is right opposite the presidential residence. We have to wait till 9am for its opening. This palace is built in 1394 as the main palace of the Joseon Dynasty. It is the most comprehensive and grandest palaces of that period.

Once the entrance to the palace was opened at 9am, our tour guide went to the ticket booth to purchase tickets. Before we tour around the palace, we detour to the National Folk Museum of Korea which is situated next to the place and it took us about 15 minutes walk. We need to take toilet break. So we tour in the museum before going to the palace. The museum displays the living of Korea during the olden days, its culture, how Korean words developed from Chinese to current state and food display. Actually cameras are not allowed but the staff there were very accommodating. They allowed us to take shots as long as we did not use flash light.

Next the Gyeongbokgung Palace.

This is the hall where foreign delegates were welcomed and entertained.

The Korean kings resembles pheonix, unlike the Chinese kings are made believe to be from the dragon descendants. However, as the country under China proctection, every year there will be entourage to the Korea from China. Once the palace were given a beautiful dragon poster by the China king.

To show its superior position, the palace places the dragon design on the ceiling. During the reign of Japanese in Korea, almost all antiques and stuff in the palace were taken away except this Dragon design.

Pavillion where the king gone to meet up with his concubines.

The map of the palace.

Day 6 continues...

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Korea - The Winter Story of Everland

Day 5

There is a story to be told in Everland every day. Snow sled down the slope, ghost house to visit, Safari World to visit, 3D House to feel the thrill, Rotating House that make you spin and a lot more that make you want to stay longer in Everland.

If you are planning to go to Everland next time, please plan for a stay over as half day is definitely not enough as in our case. Or probably because it is school holiday so all those youngsters came out and visit Everland. Everywhere we went, it was packed with people and long queues. Not much games to play as the queue itself took many hours.

Korean enjoyed their holiday very much. They do not stay at home, like what Malaysian children do (or maybe mine). Instead they will go to Nami Island, Everland and other places of interest to spend their holidays before schools reopen.

We reached Everland around 1120am on Friday morning. Before we started the tour and fun, we had our lunch Alphine Food Fair. Nothing much to say about the seafood fried rice that I had since it is complimentary with the purchase of ticket. At least it filled up my tummy. Lol!

My little gal managed to take photo with the cute mascots while they on their dancing routine around the Everland.

Our tour guide brought us to the Safari World where we sat in an enclosed bus and see rare white tigers, bears and lions. The animals were to perform simple tasks, i.e. show its tongue, show its teeth or stand on two legs, then they will get some treats from our bus driver. We were lucky to be able to catch a glimpse of a liger (cub of male lion and female tiger).

Then we visited the Animal Show which lasted 20 minutes. After that we decided to go on our own as we wanted to ride the T Express, the steepest wooden roller coaster in the world! And boy! It worth all the waiting. Nearly 3 hours waiting in the queue for the roller coaster which last less than 5 minutes.

By the time we are out from the roller coaster it is nearly 4pm and we were half way through this Double Rock Spin but time was not enough. We have to be at our waiting site by 5pm. So after about 30 minutes queue at the Double Rock Spin, we abandon our plan and headed back to the main entrance.

Some other time, Everland.......

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Korea - The bears & the seagulls

Day 4 continues

Teddy Bear Farm

When you step into this outlet, it feels like you are in a different world. A magical world of teddy bears. It is full with figures of big and miniature teddy bears. You could not resist the temptation of not taking photographs of and with the bears in this Teddy Bear Farm.

After a morning of skiing and bruising at Ski Resort, it took us about 3 hours ride to the Teddy Bear Farm. Again our clever bus driver took a wrong turn. Initially he took the correct turn and I saw the farm, but he suddenly make a U-turn and heading to the other direction. After finding out that he was lost and asked for direction, then we headed to the correct farm. Lol!

After our toilet break, we have a tour around the farm (it is more like a toys house) on our own. The owner did not bother about us at all. Look at all those bears!! Aren’t they adorable? Those are not for sales and even if they are, we cannot imagine the price. I bought 10 key chains of white bears in Korean traditional costume, which cost 5000won per piece (equivalent to RM15). There go my RM150!

Daepohang Port

After a great tour in the Teddy Bear Farm, we headed down to the famous port, Daepohang Port. It is famous for its fresh seafood. Freshly catch from the sea and served and eaten on the spot! I saw some funny sea creatures, wonder what were those?

And we ordered a fish there too! Don't ask me what fish is it, as I really don't know. It likes a flat fish, with flesh on one side (on top). And Wow! The meat was really fresh and sweet. I would not need wasabi and soy sauce with it.

The port was packed with seagulls as you can see from the picture. They were not afraid of human beings at all. My closest encounter with seagulls. What do you think those stones in Daepohang Port resemble?

Friday, March 5, 2010

Korea - Ski all the way

Day 4

From Suwon city we going to Ski Resort. We reached the Ski Resort on Day 3 evening. Our bus driver was another matter. Since Day 1 we have been driven to either wrong road or wrong destination. Few times we have had to stop at the petrol stations or road sides to ask for direction. And the way our bus driver talked also one thing. It sounds like he was quarrelling but our tour guide assured us that he was not. Our tour guide (a lady named Lisa Sung) was born in China, studied in Taiwan and resides in Korea for more than 20 years.

To continue our adventure, the bus driver took a wrong turn to Ski Resort after we collected our ski equipment and gears. Resulted in our trip delayed for more than 30 minutes. Supposed to reach the resort before 7.30pm, but we reached there after 8pm. So much say about our bus driver, as he took us to country side roads which were not only dark, but secluded. So thank god we finally reached our hotel that evening.

Our hotel block is called The Maple. I like this resort. We stayed in 2 rooms resort. One room with bed and the other room, you need to do your bed on the floor. It also have a balcony overlooking the hills, a living room, a kitchen and 2 bathroom.

After settling down in our rooms, my SIL suggested to go for sauna to relax our bodies, so hubby and I agreed to her suggestion. 5000won per person (RM15). SIL and I gone to ladies section where we saw our tour guide naked at the changing room with other naked Korean ladies. After took off our clothing and kept in locker, we went to the sauna and jacuzzi room. After a 30 minutes steaming, we called it a night. I have a good rest that night because I knew it is going to be a tough morning the next day!

Morning view of the ski hills before we went down for our breakfast. The cars were all covered in white as it snowed the night before.

So after our buffet breakfast in the hotel coffee house, we have a 20 minutes walk to Vivaldi Park where all the actions held.

After a 30 minutes training by our tour guide on how to ski, stop and get up, we went to the hills to ski. We tried 2 hills only and it also half way down the hill. We did not to try the steepest slope. Well, I lost count of how many falls I had, but it worth everything. Who never fall when skiing right? But after that night, I have sore knees and arms. Lol!

The ski boots were so heavy that I have to walk like a crab climbing up and going down the steps. Even walking was tough, felt like pulling both legs to walk in the heavy boots. Plus with the ski boards, it was tough walking. So, when ever I fall, it was tough to unlock myself from the ski boards and also locking my boots onto the boards.

Er, we did not dare to try this slope!! Crazy!! We need to use cable cars to go up, but I wonder whether we able to ski down or tumble down the hill??

Me in action! *wink* It snowed that day since we arrived in Korea, but not heavy snow. The night before it was heavier so all cars parked in the bays were covered in white!

Next destinations......Teddy Bear Farm and Daepohang Port!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Korea - Visit to the ancient fortress

Our last day stay in Suwon city before heading to the next destination and going to Seoul.

Yeonmudae centre in front of the archery field

One of recognised UNESCO World Cultural Heritage is in Korea on this site. Hwaseong Fortress. Constructed during Joseon dynasty in 1794 (King Jeongjo, the 22nd king) and in 1796 King Jeongjo moved the tomb of his father, Crown Prince Jangheon from Mt Baebong in Yangju to Mt Hwa in Suwon (now it is called Hwaseong city). Nicknamed the flower of castles because of its fortress structure and towers surrounding the city. Now it is a historical city that is surrounded by towers and tall wall.

Archery practice field

In the fortress, you can practise your archery in Yeonmudae, ride its train (they called in trolley, maybe because of its size) from Yeonmudae and striking the Bell of Filial Piety in Nam-chang dong for well wishes. They also have cultural performances but it only held on weekends. This fortress is also frequently chosen for filming of traditional costume dramas.

Dongbukgongsimdon (North Eastern Towerwatch)

View from the top of Dongbukgongsimdon. Left is Yeonmudae Information Centre and right is Dongjangdae Military Command Post which is the main post where orders were issued and training centre of the soldiers.

Hubby and myself walked from Dongjangdae (military command post) to Dongbuk Gongsimdon (North eastern watchtower). After a walk in the watch tower and took few snaps on the top of the tower, we heading back to the Yeonmudae Information Centre which is in front of Dongjangdae to take our train ride surrounding the Hwaseong Fortress. 1500won for adult and 700won for children. We took about 20 minutes ride in the train, site seeing the important towers and entrances of the fortress.
The trolley

Imagine under a temperature of nearly 0 degree Celsius, riding in a train with a moderate speed, we nearly freeze to death. After the train ride, we have to take a path down the hill to the bus station where our bus waiting for us. The train stopped at the information centre next to a tall King Jeongjo’s Bronze Statue. This statue is overlooking the city, it feels like the king is towering and proctecting the city.

That walking path already take us about 15 minutes duration. My tour in Korea was nothing, but dressed and undressed my winter clothing in bus, walking in my thick winter clothing in cold weather and feel the strong cold wind on my face. Nevertheless I enjoyed the experience. Once a while I have the tendency to touch my nose and ears to make sure they are still attached! Lol!

The map of fortress. We did not tour the whole fortress otherwise may take us many hours to finish the whole fortress.