Sunday, 14 April 2013

Hiking trip to Pantai Kerachut

Ha, this is only the 2nd time  that I've been to Pantai Kerachut, which is located at the northern tip of the Penang National Park. I did blogged about my previous hiking trip which was way back in the year 2009! As my colleagues decided to show a fellow counterpart from Hungary a taste of hiking at Malaysian tropical jungle and at the same time introducing him the beautiful sea and beaches of the Penang Island coastlines, so off we went there on a fine weekend! :)

Personally, I felt that hiking Pantai Kerachut is pretty easy and we can reach there within 1.5 to 2 hours of hike. I personally loved the welcoming sight of the glorious view of the sea after spending close to 2 hours on just green canopies during the hike! What a sight to behold! :)

After the hike, and feeling ever so hungry, it's time to enjoy our takeaways in the form of nasi lemak, some traditional kuihs and keropoks! yumm! Yes, the food motivated me more! LOL! The seawater quality here is also much cleaner than that at Batu Ferringhi which is why my Hungarian counterpart could not resist to have a dip in the sea!
Alright, Check out the pics!!

We started off our day with a sumptuous breakfast of nasi lemak (yes we ate this twice!) at a makeshift Malay warung! Yumms!
Let the hiking begin!!
I still remembered two years ago, I was here for a short 1km hike on this section of the trail but all dressed up (with makeup on too!) in my wedding gown. Not to mention, under a hot sweltering weather, just for the sake of having my wedding portraiture taken here! I was wearing my crocs underneath that LOL!

Midway :)

Beautiful wild mushrooms

We're here!! Check out the serene beach!

The small jetty where we board the boat back!

The best part here is the turtle hatcheries!
Check out the cute lil' turtles :)

And finally, our boatride home!

I do hope that we can do this more often :)

Monday, 25 February 2013

Of snakes, plants and flowers

I love to take macro pictures of bugs, plants and flowers. As I have only a small camera with a tiny lense, tiny things are all my camera lense could capture well! I usually spend my evenings out at my parent's house herb garden, busily clicking away! 

On the eve of CNY, right before my reunion lunch, I saw a lot of little bugs buzzing around my tangerine plant (I bought this for my dad 4 years ago during CNY too!) which was flowering then. There's a lot of cute little wasp busily pollinating there hence I wanted to capture those wasps in action! As I approached the tangerine plant, I got a rude shock when I discovered a slittery thing! Upon closer inspection, I realized it was a snake!!! It was at least 80 cm long, with small green stripes on its body!.
Here's the snake which was well camouflaged on the tangerine plant! To think about it, perhaps the snake just came by to usher in the year of snake!! Huat arr!! 
I actually called my dad after I saw the snake as he was out doing some grocery shopping that time. The first thing he did after he heard that was to head over to the lottery shop to buy our house address number!! 
My dad tried to shoo the snake away but in a flash it managed to slither to the bougainvillea plant. After that, we decided to just ignore the snake hoping it will just leave. We went for our reunion lunch and as soon as I returned to check on it an hour later, true enough, the snake had left and never returned. Theoretically speaking, we suspected the reason the snake came was because of this here. Please see the picture below. Yup, that's two bird eggs. Looked yummy right? LOL!

I captured these two lil' eggs, two weeks before CNY when I returned home. Apparently a bird had decided to build a nest on my dad's flowering potted plant which wasn't very tall, hence we could easily spot the eggs.

When I was back during CNY, the eggs had hatched and this were the two cute little darling nestlings!
They were waiting eagerly to be fed by their mother.
Look how cute they were, luckily the snake did not manage to eat them! However, I have an even more tragic news. Just a day after I took this picture, they were missing the next day when I went to check on them. The nest was somewhat destroyed too!! So what has happened and who's the culprit?
By doing some CSI investigations, we highly suspected that it was the CAT looking at the damage done to the nest!! :( The cat basically just swallowed them whole!! 
Sigh...that's life isn't it? :(
Here's a picture of the poor momma bird, always busy looking for food and watching over her nest.

Other than that, here's some macro shots I took.

 The little wasp helping with the pollination process! Note: I took this picture prior to the snake's visit. I dare not go near this plant for a few days ever since I spotted the snake! LOL!
 Another shot of the wasp busy at work! If you noticed, there were two little bubble thingy on the wasp's leg. Do you know what is that? I am wondering too..
 The tangerine plant flowering and fruiting soon thanks to the wasps!! :)
 The bougainvillea flower
My parent's chinese bamboo plant never fail to flower every spring especially on CNY!!
  A little wasp hive!

                                       Another bougainvillea flower. Aren't they pretty? :)
 My dad's fiery chilli plant

 I have forgotten the name of this flower! Any idea?
 Another unknown flower. Beautiful eh?
 Unknown fruit!
 Little dragon fly :)
 An abandoned shell
A morning glory which was sleeping as I captured this late afternoon.

Don't you just love the nature? :)

I definitely do!

Sunday, 24 February 2013

CNY 2013 - outdated post

I was really privileged to be able to celebrate the CNY back at my hometown this year while hubby returned to his hometown. As usual, I just love to snap snap snap all the traditions that has been practiced in my family for generations. My grandma would shake her head whenever she sees me holding my camera! LOL! Well, I am just worried that this tradition may have been forgotten especially in our generation, hence if I have some visual proof here, I could at least emulate some of these traditions in future. 

Basically, Chinese New Year is all about food and family gatherings. In some families, the get-togethers also included "gamblings" while the younger kids would play fireworks together! I do miss all these activities as a kid and I would be so excited donning on my new attire on CNY too!  Now that I am older, CNY brought a different kind of feeling. To me, to be able to be at home with my family has already bring me great joy! As I was away at Hungary last year, to be able to celebrate CNY this year indeed make me very happy! I was home for a week and to be able to immerse myself in all those "festivity" feeling, hearing those loud firecrackers, loud CNY dong dong chiang music and watching all those funny CNY movies which I use to hate alot but strangely, I actually love em' all now! So here's some pictures that I would like to share. 

Since I was back two days before the CNY begins, I helped to decorate my parent's home with some angpows and little decorative items I bought from the Campbell Street Market. Decorating the house prior to CNY has always being my responsibility but since I was always away or are only back a day before the reunion dinner for the past few years, I was actually excited to have the chance to decorate the house this year! :P

Reunion Lunch: The simple reunion lunch for the four of us. My parents, my grandma and myself. This year, my sister will only be coming back home on the 2nd day of CNY.

Midnight prayer to welcome the CNY

My favourite CNY Day #1 dish and also my all-time favourite food!!. My mom's super duper delicious mix vegetables dish!!Mmmmmmm!!!
CNY Day#1 Dinner: Went to my uncle's house for lou sang and steamboat dinner! Mmmmmm...!!

My grandma showing me the blouse which I bought for her. Nice or not? hehe..

CNY Day#2 : My cheeky 4.5 year old nephew! :)

CNY Day#2: My lil' niece, Jean at 14 months!! She can waddle (very cute) and has mastered quite a few words!! She loves to dance and guess what's her favourite song? 
Oppa Gangnam style!!:)

My techie gradma chatting with her great grandson Jacob all-the-way in US!! :)

Happy Chap Goh Meh

Happy Chap Goh Meh!!!Wow..luckily I still managed to post an entry before the CNY ended for the year of 2013!! 

Chap Goh Meh is basically a hokkien word which means the "15th day of the Lunar New Year". This day is also known as the Chinese Valentine's Day. Historically, single ladies/maidens would throw mandarin oranges into the sea or river, not before putting their wishes and perhaps their contact information written on the oranges. On the other hand, the bachelors will all be eagerly waiting on the boats, trying to collect the oranges with the intention of getting more contact information from the girls :). This culture is still being practiced today although it is much more commercialized and staged. I guess the most important information on the oranges today would be the Facebook profiles rather than an actual contact number! LOL.

This year, I have been privileged to be able to visit the annual light-up of the Kek Lok Si temple at Air Itam, Penang again. Expecting a large crowd, instead of going there today which is the last day, hubby and I went to check out the place on the 14th day instead. Although we went there rather late, around 9.30pm, traffic was still pretty bad and the roads leading to the temple was congested at the last 1 km. Not surprising though, as the roads gets narrower as we approached the temple. We remembered that 4 years ago, when we went to check out the place, traffic was smooth all the way and we were able to park right at the bottom of the hill. Time has definitely changed today with more people congregating in Penang today than 4 years back. Not complaining though as this sure is a good sign of Penang progressing well. :)

These are some of the pictures I took with my camera phone. Too bad that all my camera batteries were dead, so these pictures were the best I could capture! :)

Happy CNY 2013!!! :)

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Back home in AS for the new year

I celebrated the New Year back in my hometown at Alor Setar this year. The reason is because I had to send my parents back after their 2 month trip to the US visiting my brother's family.
See how elated my parents were when they just got out from the departure gate at Bayan Lepas airport! I missed them loads too! :)

Since my parents were there for two months, hubby decided to order a Google Nexus 7 for my 2013 birthday present. Weee!! I have a new gadget!! Love you dear! :)

Dad bought my favourite fried noodle and fried yingyong (fried flat noodle). Yummms!

As I have nothing better to do at home, just for fun, I snapped some of my childhood memorabilia. On this vest are my huge collection of pins and badges which I had accumulated over the years, mostly from my Interact club days back in high school.

On my bookshelf, here' my childhood softoys collection. Some has been with me for over 20 years!

Some novels and old pictures

Some reference books from my university days and also some souvenirs I bought from my travels.

Lastly, before I returned to Penang today, my favourite thing to do is to "harvest" some of the vegetables from my parent's herb garden. As shown on the picture above, there were some pandan leaves, basil leaves, lemongrass, limes,fiery cili padi and kafir leaves. Soo aromatic, so fresh!! mmmm....time to do some cooking again :)

Have a great new year!!