Sunday, May 27, 2012

Prince Kung's Mansion...

This mansion was built for the minister, He Shen... wasn't he the last eunuch in the imperial household? Anyway, I got really bored looking at those architectural designs where the palaces and mansion looked just like temples over here. We had to join a very big group of tourists as the spokeswoman for the Kung Palace was in charge of telling all about the place to tourists. 
I didn't hear much of it mainly because I was really cold and there were too many people and her mandarin was spoken in such a way that left me wondering what was she saying. Due to the chilliness of the weather, my brain could not comprehend much of the Chinese Language but behind me, I was very sure I heard correctly that Prince Kung... or was it He Shen, the minister, kept gold bullion in the first floor. So no outsiders were allowed to roam around in his mansion and he made the whole place looked like a place of worship so no one was paying attention to the building. 
 The size of the mansion was a quarter of the size of the Forbidden City but Prince Kung's mansion was equally as wealthy as the Forbidden City. There were three factors where the public strongly believed in:

  1. Prince Kung was heavily involved in corruption until the mansion was once sealed while he underwent investigation
  2. Prince Kung was a resourceful man
  3. Prince Kung was having a homosexual affair with the emperor
Please don't jump on the third factor. All of us heard that correctly and a few of them said they have read that in their history books. It was said that the emperor spent most of his leisure hours at Prince Kung's mansion and likewise, Prince Kung went over to the Forbidden City whenever he had nothing better to do. OoOOOoOOOoOOO.... How did the emperor managed to have 926 concubines *I think that was the number* yet at the same time, he was having a homosexual relationship with Prince Kung? Was the emperor bisexual? Geez... I was just wondering out loud a second ago...
One of my new friends told me that this was the place where almost all the Chinese series were filmed. I don't watch any Chinese series but I did not watch them when I was in primary school. HHhhhmmm.... that's the place then to film all the old Chinese movies.
The girl next to me was a couple of years younger than me. She was one show-off person but I have to praise her for her bravery to converse in English. What an odd slang she has for a Chinese. She was speaking English with a heavy Russian accent and she said that's how her lecturers in the Foreign Studies taught her. Pinky and I were both scratching our heads, trying to make out the words that she was saying. Australian accent was not a heavy as what she her slang sounded like. One minute she sounded like a Russian and the next she sounded like a French. I asked her about her Frenchman slang and she said she learned it from a course mate who only dream of going to France one day. Oh, boy~!
We were enlightened with the cultural performance. The other girl actually dropped all her plates while making her turns. Oh.... what a pity~! I hope she didn't get a scolding from her mentor.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

The Perfected Cookies...

Due to overwhelming response for my chocolate chip cookies, I went grocery shopping an hour before the clock struck twelve to mark the end of Thursday. Instead of going to the main Tesco in Gelugor, as it closes at 11 o'clock, my hubby and I went to Tesco Extra. I was a bit 'lost' shopping there as I wasn't familiar with where the things were arranged. I found everything that I needed. I changed from using Baker's Choice wheat flour to the all purpose flour as suggested in the recipe. Hershey's chocolate chips were the best I've ever tasted. I can't downgrade my cookies with cheap chocolate chips. 
Baking is nothing like cooking. I can change whichever ingredients or sauces as I wish but baking, there's nothing I can change except that I can reduce the amount of sugar used. I did reduce the amount of sugar in the second batch cookies. I reduced the size of the cookies as well. So instead of making 30 pieces of cookies, I made 44 pieces. As I said, it's very important to follow the ingredients shared by famous bakers, the cookies tasted totally different from what I did a few days ago. 
It tasted better than Famous Amos' chocolate chip cookies. Chipsmore was no competition to this one. The chocolate that oozes out looks like the cheese that oozes out from my handmade burgers. It's finishing very fast but I don't think I'm gonna make this again as I have other things in mind. Anyway, the cookies are FOR SALEE~! RM2 per piece.... price is not negotiable, every ingredient in expensive... takes time to wait for the cookies while they lay resting in the oven.

PS. After tasting this, I realized that I flunk in the first attempt to make the cookies but my guinea pigs did not know that until they have tasted the second batch of cookies.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Zul's Burger: My Side of the Story...

A few days back, on Monday to be exact, my eldest and I walked to the craft store within a stone's throw away from our new house. I have just finished with my masterpiece and I wanted to start on the second one immediately, which I have started :D There was a stretch of shoplots right opposite and we saw many people queuing up at a stall by the corner. I thought it must be like at Cargas Cafe at the Bayan Lepas main road where people queue up just to buy rice with a few dishes. Malay food is nice... in Penang la... of course... where else can you find super nice food? Yes, I'm bias... because I'm a local Penang-lass :D
Yesterday, when I saw someone posted up the link about the burger, I was ecstatic to know that it was that shop around the corner with lots and lots of people. It was so near our house. Today, I decided to go there since I have no night classes. I was planning to have dinner there with the whole family. I went for a jog around the field in front of the house, jogged for 7 rounds instead of the usual 3 rounds. Took a shower before the whole family went jaywalking at the two-way traffic road, reached within 3 minutes, placed our order after we were very sure that that's the huge burger we wanted. Our order was number 12... so there were 11 orders before ours and not even one order has been served. We went to sit on an empty table, but looking at the others who have been seated long before us, after 10 minutes, I decided to go home and leave my eldest, precious and youngest to wait for the burger.

I planned not to cook dinner but in the morning, I decided to cook dinner for them instead of just eating burger. I have never been so right before. We placed our order at 7:15pm, my three teenagers walked home  at 8:40pm empty-handed, growling stomach and sweating. They were so hungry they gulped the dinner down their throat. After waiting for a while, my eldest and precious went to wait again for the burger. By 9:15pm I called them and to my horror, they have just served order #5... six more orders before it reached ours. My precious was worried as she has to finish up her history folio to pass up on the next day. So, I graciously drop my needle and walked over to the store, sending my eldest home as she has not taken her shower after our evening jog and she was very tired. 

I sat there like a log, then I called Judz to let her know that we're definitely NOT going for the burger again no matter how big it is. We're planning to go on Thursday nite to have our dinner there. There were so many people who were willing to wait. At 9:45pm, I had my Pang-5 burger, a 4kg burger... that was 2.5 hours wait, just for a burger. The lady behind the counter said it was written that we would be having the burger there instead of taking away. I stared at her and told her loudly that it was impossible to have the whole family sitting down and looking at one another with beady eyes for such a long time. 

So, she put the burger into a cake box to be carried away and charged me another RM2 for the box. I should charge you RM100 for an hour of waiting time. So Zul's burger actually owed the four of us RM250 for making us wait for 2 hours and 30 minutes. Time waits for no man... bak kata pepatah, 'Masa itu Emas'.
I carried the burger home and we cam-whored with the burger. Our first time and last time having the burger. The burger was RM30 and we cut it into 8 pieces. How does the burger taste like, you may ask... 
My eldest lifted the burger bun to take a look at the content. Oh, I was very disappointed... I was thinking there might be a burger patty as large as the burger bun but it wasn't so. If you can make it out from the picture, there were bits and pieces of Ramly chicken burger, lots and lots of raw cabbage, chopped raw onions and raw mixed vegetables with those green peas. Gross~!! I like my cabbage in the soup, sauteed onions and I dislike mixed vege especially green peas to the max~!!! I saw lots and lots of Ramly burger... I'm NOT against Ramly burger patties but I thought they were gonna make their own patties like how I did mine. 

It wasn't worth the long wait and I can be very sure that those who have tasted my homemade burgers will say that McJu tasted a million times better than this. So, my mama always have words of comfort, "Now, we can also boast that we've tasted the huge burger." Long waiting hours do not mean that the quality of food was there. Wait till I make a burger patty as huge as that, then it will be worth waiting for... but I wouldn't, in the right frame of mind, make anyone wait for 2.5 hours just to have a burger. 

I sincerely apologize to Zul's burger. I didn't mean to tarnish your good name, it's just my side of the story, or more like our side of the story of the long wait. Time is very precious as I rarely have any free nights and I cherish every moment of free time that I have. I will never waste even a minute by sitting down and doing nothing, or pressing the phone just to entertain myself. I will never do that... I shall make my burger once again... I bet there are many people who miss my McJu's... 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Our Imaginary Trishaw Ride...

Why so? It should be a real ride but the saga of the evil tour guide lurks in this story. The dear tour guide collected an exorbitant fee for this trishaw ride and a traditional performance. He collected, or should I say the tour agency charged each person 120yuan just for a short trishaw ride and an hour of traditional performance. 
Let's clear the air. I don't know how do other people go for tour. I can see that no one did any asking around for the actual price, not for anywhere, they just trusted the tour guide completely. Pinky and I have a different way of operating around. We asked different trishaw riders for their prices. We got the cheapest in the end, 50yuan for BOTH of us, going for a 20-minute ride.We thought that was a really good bargain and the trishaw in Beijing was better than the trishaw in Malacca which both of us took a ride around Malacca city. We were afraid that if we took the ride, the few oldies who went for the ride would be back and then definitely the tour guide will leave us behind. And we still do not know which part of Beijing we were at. The trishaw man tried to persuade us saying that it would be another 20 minutes before those who left came back. We were still thinking, trying to lower down the price when lo' and behold, the few oldies were back already. See? The tour guide even arranged for the route to be shortened. They were back in less than 10 minutes.
While they were away, we had the time to exercise on the equipment placed by the road side. Reminds me so much of home... 

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

I Can Bake~!

Muahahha~! I have talent in cooking now I figure I have talent in baking as well. This is not my first attempt in baking. My first one was making chicken pies and the second was chocolate cheesecake while the third was a lemon chocolate pie. That was like 7 years back. So, now I started baking again. I thought I was gonna fail, like getting the cookies burnt or mess up the whole kitchen. I was actually multitasking this morning between preparing Japanese lunch and making these chocolate chip cookies. Halfway mixing all the ingredients I stopped midway, started calling Judz to ask whether I could use Baker's Choice wheat flour instead of the all-purpose flour as stated in the recipe. I couldn't use my all-purpose flour or else the chocolate chip cookies would taste like Kentucky fried chicken. In the end, I used the wheat flour because it was printed there Baker's Choice and there were pictures of cakes and puffs printed as well. 

The feedback after feeding all the guinea pigs was:

  1. It was awesome~!
  2. Superb~!
  3. Tasted better than Subway's cookies~!
  4. Wow~!
Haha... since the response was so good, I think I will continue baking. These chocolate chip cookies were used to determine whether I should bake or not :D I only have 30 pieces and in order not to put on weight, the best way is to give it to my guinea pigs... heehhee... fat distribution in balance :D

Monday, May 21, 2012

Beijing Television Station...

It was our fourth day in Beijing. It was getting way too cold but Pinky and I survived. Our first destination of the day, I was hoping for a good tour and it was indeed good... in a wrong way but it turned out really great. 
Let me share with you briefly what was at the television station. I learnt nothing about television station neither did any of us get a glimpse of how the television station in China functioned. It was one shocking experience where the door closed behind us and we were watched from all corners of the room with the closed circuit television. The room was quite empty except for pictures of gigantic buildings hung on the walls. A lady walked in and she greeted us warmly and introduced herself as a fengshui master. She went on to explain the importance of fengshui in buildings. I shut my brain off as I was aghast with what they have at the television station. I was very angry and upset because I thought I was going to the national television station as what the tour guide kept on mentioning. The next thing that happened left my mouth gaping and the next thing I knew, I was texting my hubby to complain all the way from thousands of miles away. 

It was getting from ridiculous to totally absurd. There was an ugly beast in the centre of the room. The lady went on to state that the emperor used to have that beast in the palace to make sure that the emperor was wealthy and healthy throughout his reign in the country. That lady had everyone's attention when she said that  everyone in the room should touch that hideous man-made beast from the head to the tail to ensure good health and wealth to be knocking on one's door. I gave her a dagger look when she asked me to join the group. I told her straight off that I do not believe such thing. 

After the session of molesting the beast ended, we were asked to proceed to the next room. I thought we were going up the tower as what the tour guide said. Sad to say, it was a complete lie. I didn't know that they were capable of telling lies, such big lies in broad daylight. The next room was a SALES ROOM where they sell jades and more jades. That lady went on to talk about the 12 Chinese zodiacs and then the salesgirls started asking everyone to come forward so that they could read the palm. Pinky went ahead and I followed her to see how great the salesgirl was in palm-reading. To my astonishment, she cursed Pinky saying that she has a short life and her health is down in the dumps but wearing a piece of jade around her neck, her health will make a U-turn and she will have long life. In my wildest imagination, I was whacking that salesgirl with all the chairs in the room, bashing all of them who were telling lies and cursing people and making people believe all the negativity, implanting lies and more lies. 

I dragged Pinky to the back of the room, telling her how absurd all these were. Thank God she realized that those were all just sales gimmick. As I was explaining to her how all those things will never give her the wealth of the world and the perfect health, unbeknownst to me, the young adults started gathering around me  and I grabbed the opportunity to share with them the other beliefs other than the ancient belief that they knew. I didn't share about the gospel to them but it was an ear-opening and mind-opening session for them to hear about the love of Christ. It was the joy of the Lord in me that they saw as one of them mentioned that I was always joyous, laughing and smiling. 

Anyway, I was glad that I was able to persuade them not to believe in those jades. None of them bought anything. I guessed the tour guide wasn't so happy that he wasn't able to earn more commission. As he mentioned earlier, we would be going up the television station tower. After waiting for any of us to step forward to buy one or two pieces of jade, finally he said we should go outside. In the pinching cold, we were asked to snap photos. Of course that's what we did. Nothing can stop us from taking photos. 
After snapping a photo or two of the television tower, the tour guide started leading us to somewhere. Hey, I can read that signboard~! Central TV Tower Dock... yay~! We're going up then... but you see, the tour guide was one unhappy man and a vindictive person. He took us straight to the bus and asked the bus driver to drive away to the next destination. What a liar~! All of us started to dislike him completely... as in DISLIKE to the max~!!!! The good thing that came out of it was I get new friends and they were very eager to join us in our room on the last night in Beijing for a chat... 

Sunday, May 20, 2012

I'm Busy la...

I'm so sorry. I wanted to update this blog so much but I'm overwhelmed with work.. which was an utter lie. I was very busy with so many things going around, thinking of ways to decorate the house... again, that was only half truth. I have a few hours of free time this afternoon, I did update 11 photos into my Facebook and I planned to multitask like what I usually do... update an album, publish a post and continue stitching but now that I'm about to finish stitching my 9-page masterpiece after more than a year, I find that I can't multitask. I need to concentrate solely on my stitches... I'm so excited to see the moment I make the last stitch. Bye for now~!! One more week of school... exam, exam and exam... then school holidays for two weeks, semester break... which means I won't be online that often :D

Thursday, May 17, 2012

You Have ... Missed Calls...

HHhmmm... today is the second time I forget to bring my mobile phones out of the house. I only realized that I was without all my three phones when I was sitting down at Queen's Market and ordering lunch. Used Judz phone to call hubby or else he might call until all my phones exploded. After 12 hours of not being at home as I was in another home, it was kinda surprising to see 5 messages and 14 missed calls, mostly from unknown number. Weird... whenever I have all my phones with me, the phones wouldn't ring that much. And who called from 00603000000000 what kinda number was that? Calls from Mars? And by the way,  I didn't put that O2 Atom Mini for the fun of it. I'm seriously STILL using that pda after the mobile phones have gone through major transformation and turned into smart phones. I love my Pda and I have reason to change to a smart phone. My phone is smart enough for me and I love using that stylus pen instead of my fingers. I can be very sure that all the smart phones gang up together and refuse to let me send a proper text message without typos. I don't feel that I've lost a limb without my phones. 

The Power of the Pen...

I have been writing essays for both English and Malay language. I do enjoy writing but there are certain times that I don't feel like writing one, not one but usually I'll be composing multiple essays one after another. It costs the brain to feel that it has been burdened with a sack of potatoes. I do not know how the term 'a sack of potatoes' come about, but I just feel heavy in the head. If I'm doing Add Maths then it feels that my brain has been challenged to an extent yet I feel good about it. 

A good essay, no doubt short, is able to create a circus of emotions out of a reader. When I have the mood to write, I can write a really good essay that can make a set of droopy eyes to be wide open. I'm done writing four essays in Malay, and at the same time I'm done with this blog post. The goodness of being able to multitask. Going to dreamland~! Tomorrow: 5 hours of work... I have no idea where has my time gone to when my working hours is actually very short only. 

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Shopping in Beijing...

We didn't shop for any clothes. After wearing so many layers, if I need to try out a piece of clothing it would take me at least an hour to remove and put everything back on. That would be very time consuming. And the price after discount for the clothes in departmental store was cut-throat expensive. I can buy more back home. We went to the basement and started looking at junk food. There were so many types of snacks there, I was seeing stars. I grabbed a small pack of Oreo as they came in different flavours. I brought those Oreo back home for my kids to try out. The taste was horrible~!! The chocolate chips didn't taste like chocolate chips. Pinky remembered the chocolate chips tasted better when she was small. I love minute maid orange pulp drink. The best part of winter was no refrigerator was needed to keep the food stuff cold. I dislike hot drinks so I have my orange juice from morning until nite. I remembered how we had to carry all those stuff back to the hotel... a 20-minute walk in the icy cold weather. Just love the coldness.

The Story of the Sausage and Sweet Potato...

Due to the inedible food that was served by different restaurants catered for tour groups, Pinky and I had to search for our own food because it was extremely cold there and we were so hungry, being food lovers, we couldn't survive on such small amount of food for so many days. I saw a lady selling sausages by the road side. The smell was tempting but it was 5 yuan for two sticks... two fat sausages with some chilli powder sprinkled all over them. The sausage itself was fantastic but I would very much prefer eating those sausages without the chilli powder and pepper. We bought the sausages while walking back to the bus from the bird nest stadium. The tour guide thought I was mad because we were heading towards the restaurant for dinner. Thank God for those two sausages as the dinner that night was even worse than the previous night's. We were served with all sorts of bean curds from the deep-fried bean curd to bean curd sheet stir-fried with their porcelain-like baby cabbage. Pinky and I ate a little bit and then went out to survey the perimeter :D
Pinky smelt something that was very enticing. Her sweet potatoes. She loves sweet potatoes and since she was very hungry we went over to the lady with the bicycle and all the sweet potatoes. Pinky picked the size of the sweet potato and I could picture her peeling the skin and sinking her teeth into the soft sweet flesh of the potato. According to the lady, it would be 4 yuan for 600 grams. Pinky took out a piece of 5 yuan note to pay the lady. 
The lady used the old scale which we had no idea how to use or even see where the measurements were. She was so fast and said that the price of the sweet potato was 12yuan that would be around 1.8kg. Oi, lady~! Don't cheat us la... we know we look very young and inexperience but you should know that I go to the market and I can estimate the weights using my hand. Pinky passed me the sweet potato that she was holding on. She couldn't believe it was so heavy. My foot~! That sweet potato weigh less than a kilo. I told that lady straight away but she refused to budge until when we decided to walk away she said she would reduce the price to 10yuan. Never cheat hungry but experienced people. Pinky would rather walk away without her sweet potato than let that lady earned while lying through her teeth. 
Goodbye sweet potatoes~! 

Beijing Olympic 2008...

Yay~! I was finally there but not during the 2008 Olympic games. It was icy cold but we were very excited coz Pinky was never here before. The cold was pinching every inch of our skin and I didn't bring Loki down coz I thought it wouldn't be that cold. The temperature was below zero. 
That was the aquatic centre but it was close obviously... who would want to swim in the freezing water? 
The bird nest stadium. There was a story behind the constructions of both buildings. According to my 'shallow' understanding regarding feng shui, the bird nest stadium wasn't meant to be there as the location according to the fengshui master was not appropriate. The location symbolizes fire so you wouldn't want to have a stadium that was built on fire. But since the stadium must be built there, then the water cube was built opposite the fire bird nest in order to cool it down. What was I saying? I don't know what did I just say... I think that was half correct but I remembered when I heard about it... I was thinking to myself... how absurd... very sorry... I do respect your culture but at the same time... haaaa... *speechless*
What's that tower for? Anyway... we took our own sweet time but at first we were running like someone was after us. We were only given 20 minutes to hang around the place. Pinky and I wanted to run all the way to the main entrance of the bird nest stadium as none of us have any idea how the interior of the stadium looked like, what was being held there during winter as there seemed to be people walking up and down the corridor but we were too far from the place. The heartless tour guide would definitely leave us here if we didn't hurry. Hate him to the max~!!

Happy Mother's Day...

~ The hand that rocks the cradle, rules the world ~
We didn't do anything special on Mother's Day. If we were to go out to a restaurant, my mama has been eating really good food everyday. So, we went around looking at furniture. Found everything that we needed and wanted. I bought mama a crocodile, a travel pillow but it's good for neck support as my mama is always in front of the computer, sometimes in front of the desktop and laptop at the same time... talk about tech savvy... the desktop is for playing games while the laptop is for work, so the crocodile serves its purpose unless it's too hot around the neck. Happy Mother's Day~!

Me Lurve Snowy...

I have the whole set of the Adventures of TinTin and I started reading the first volume which consist of two adventures. The first one was of TinTin, as a young journalist, who went to Russia to investigate some stuff. The second one was of TinTin who went to Congo, Africa with his faithful terrier, Snowy. I lurve Snowy... Snowy is cutely drawn and I can imagine the dog's expression. I love dogs which talk... yeah yeah yeah... I know I'm just imagining that dogs can talk... 
See... you understand what I mean when I say that Snowy's expression was priceless? Where to buy the soft toy? I want Snowy~!!! 

Monday, May 14, 2012

The Great Wall of China...

Finally, at 3:30p.m. we reached the Great Wall of China. It was a very rushed trip for the tour guide shoo-ed us out of the bus, walked at the speed of lightning and it was 2-degree Celsius out in the open and the sun was of no help at all to give us heat. The tour guide gave us 2 hours only. 2 hours? I wanted to tell him that he shouldn't give us a time limit after dragging us all around the shops and spent hours and hours of our precious time. Well, I did not argue with him as it would be unfruitful to talk to such senseless person. It was one little part of the Great Wall only as those thousands of steps would take us to a dead end. There were thousands of people up there and one must be very fit to climb all the stairs. I have no stamina for steps at all and I thought I was gonna fail. 
Pinky who has the fear of height was shaking like a leaf. By the time we managed to climb up all the giant steps to the second tower, we took a rest. The picture above was not the second tower. The second tower was further up. I was very tired and since Pinky couldn't move anymore, I decided to stop with her. But we have so much time left. I rested for awhile and was having a debate to myself whether to continue until the end or accompany Pinky. After the Guangzhou Tower incident, I was afraid to leave her alone. Then, she persuaded me to continue as it would definitely be our only time here. I don't think I will go there again so I made a quick decision to go ahead making Pinky promised me not to even move her ass anywhere. I don't have a phone with me and if ever she went missing, I would cry my heart out as it was completely a foreign land there. 
There were many who didn't make it to the end of the Great Wall of China. One needed a lot of self-motivation to get there. I was telling myself that I would reach in a few more steps. The power of the brain and the power of confession. I didn't want to leave Pinky for too long. I planned to make it to the top fast, snap a few photos and then made my way down where I left her. It was very cold and yet I was sweating profusely. I was very tempted to remove the jacket as I have four more layers underneath the thick red jacket and it was so hard to climb fast as there there were two more layers inside my pair of jeans. I started to picture myself back home where I was only in t-shirt and shorts.... HAH... that made me moved faster. I stopped a few people to take photos for me as my photographer was resting at the second watch tower. 
Finally, I made it after 45 minutes. That was the end of the Great Wall of China. I did not snap only one or two photos. We have lots of photos as the only people at the end were my new friends. It was like an ice-breaker. I thought them how to jump around and snap beautiful photos instead of standing in one corner doing nothing. I will never be able to share those fantastic snapshots as they were not able to have access to Facebook and I have problems with reading Chinese thus, I could not have a Weibo account or QQ. I think we spent too much time here taking photos. 
Yeehaw~! They were all so young and it's their first time flying out of their nests. Pinky and I were the only two married young people and I was the oldest among the group. They were only in the beginning of their 20's while I was already at the other end of  my 20's. Well, I am forever 15... so I taught them how to enjoy themselves. They were very nice and friendly people. After getting all of them to sweat it out by jumping in numerous poses, we went down to 'fetch' Pinky. There were so many of us accompanying here. We 'barricaded' Pinky with our human body.
We were the last people to board bus. They were hurrying towards the bus until I asked them to slow down. They wouldn't leave us here in the wilderness. We were the only human beings left at the Great Wall and if the tour guide can waste so much of our precious hours, it wouldn't hurt him to wait for us for a few more minutes. We weren't late actually. We reached the bus exactly at 5:30pm the rest of them were early as they didn't reach the end of the Great Wall. Barely halfway through, they turned back and decided to rest in the bus. 

Thursday, May 10, 2012

The Senseless Tour Guide...

That tour guide was really mad as in sick in the head. He was still hurrying us to move faster as he said that we didn't have enough time to go to the Great Wall of China. I have yet to see the Great Wall and I think that tour guide himself was one big great wall that was blocking my way. After going to the tomb that was quite a distance from the jade godown, that tour guide fantastically turned back to the jade godown where there was a restaurant in the same building of the godown which none of us even realized. It was completely wasting our time and since it was already lunch time, you get what I mean? We were in the bus at 6:30am and it was already 12 noon and I haven't even reach the Great Wall of China. Beijing wasn't that big afterall it was just that  the tour guide made it sound like it was so far away when we were actually being dragged to all these places for him to earn extra pocket money. Remind me again, never to join any tour group unless I am the tour guide. 
After lunch, we were hurried up the bus as he said we would be going to the Great Wall of China. Where the heck is that Great Wall???? That blardy bus stopped in front of one old building and we were ushered in like pigs going to be culled. Then we were 'forced' to sit in a classroom. It looked like a classroom with study tables and chairs. Then, suddenly, that man with white coat like a doctor walked to the front. I thought that was the biggest bullshit I've ever seen of a traditional medical practitioner promoting the company's products, wearing like a general practitioner in hospitals. When the bus went around Beijing, I saw a university for traditional medicine then I realized that they were not fakes but how to be sure that those traditional medicines were for real? It just came out in the newspaper two days ago stating that South Korea has tested some capsules which was produced by China made of human flesh, chopping the babies into pieces then put on the stove to dry, then pound them into powder. What on earth was wrong with the Chinese in China? I will never want to say I'm a Chinese anymore, it brought to much shame... I'm a Malaysian, not a Chinese or else people might think I'm from China.
Still no Great Wall but we ended up at the Beijing Native Products. What do you have in mind? I couldn't imagine what the native products were. I was thinking maybe something like ginseng or those herbal stuff. Hohohoho~! I was wrong indeed. That whole huge place was selling junk food, made of dried fruits, added with some colouring and flavouring and since no photography allowed, so I can't show you anything. Pinky and I tried on all of the samples. They gave so we took them, when we were asked to buy, we moved on and we started speaking English so they thought we were foreigners... I AM ONE... then they stopped bothering us. That was kinda fun. We did that at the Chinese Medicinal Hall... we crapped in English and the salesgirl stared at us, thinking we were some aliens speaking E.T. language. 
Aiyo~! Buy so much for what? See... this is another part where I cannot understand people. There are many  people who go for a holiday, buy biscuits and sweet stuff in bulk, lug them back thousand and thousand of miles away just to give to friends and relatives. Then those friends and relatives most probably won't finish up the biscuits as the taste was just too horrible, keep the biscuits and after a few months during spring cleaning, discover the biscuits which have gone terribly awry and dump them into the rubbish bin. In conclusion, I don't buy and give to people what I don't eat. If I dislike the taste, most probably my friends will not enjoy it either. My new friends said that it's a MUST for them to buy something back for their relatives and friends. To that I answered, I don't owe anyone anything that I MUST get something for others. I buy because I feel that the thing is nice and my friends may like it and I buy being very sure there's enough storage in my luggage. Obviously, the tour guide was smiling from ear-to-ear seeing the large plastic bags. His commission ballooned up while the buyers' wallets became lighter and lighter. 

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Auntie Went to Shit~!!

The outside of the emperor's tomb wasn't that bad. There were lots of peach and apple trees but since it was winter, the trees were completely stripped off of their leaves. They were just skeletons, looked dead but actually hibernating. I like the rundown side of the place. Give me the actual feel of being in China instead of OCT which has the modern feel. Do you know that I do enjoy dressing up for winter? You have to wear so much, walk so far yet still feel so cold. Love my fluffy boots but won't have the chance to wear it back home now with such humid and warm weather. 
Gosh~! That auntie was one character that I will never forget. She came from one of the villages so I think it might be her first time going to the capital of her own country. The one holding the blue umbrella was just accompanying her to look for a good spot to contribute to the soil, to make the dry soil more fertile for the coming spring. After walking around, finally she found the correct spot to dump her gold assets. We were laughing like hyenas in the bus while waiting for her and the rest of them who were walking among the dead underground. That auntie was one hilarious type and we usually laughed together because I have something else in mind while she thought I was laughing about another matter. In the end, everyone was laughing after looking at both of us who laughed at different matters. Auntie took at least 15 minutes to get her assets placed strategically on the soil. 

Question: If you're the one on the dumping ground, will you hold the umbrella to cover your face or your naked ass? 
That's the question that I asked most of them in the bus. 
Most favourable answer: Cover thy face. You wouldn't want anyone to recognize you for shitting by the roadside or in the middle of nowhere. You need not cover your ass as everyone has almost the same ass unless your ass takes on the shape of a triangle or hexagon or whatever type of polygons that you can imagine of.

Loitering Outside the Emperor's Tomb...

After spending endless hours at the jade godown, we were headed to the emperor's tomb. That would mean paying your own entrance fee which both of us smartly refused to do so. It was just a tomb. I would rather visit my grandparents' tombs then any emperors. Thus, we were both loitering around the outer part of the huge place instead of heeding the tour guide's instructions where we were supposed to rot in the bus for almost an hour or so. The older ones who did not purchase the ticket sat in the bus for the whole time. 
We walked all the way to the ticketing booth. We were shocked to see that the price to visit the tomb was only 40yuan, at an all time low as it was during winter and the tour guide charged each of them who wanted to go a 100yuan. That was one unscrupulous move that will be announced out loud by both of us. Our new friends were first time travellers in their own country. There were other events that needed to be paid upfront. 
Hehe... at least I have a photo to prove that I've been there before. A little history about DingLing. That tour guide had been sharing the histories about the Ming Tomb or in Chinese he was saying 十三陵, meaning there were thirteen emperors who were buried underground far away from each other. The people would bring peaches and apples to give to the dead during All Souls' Day. But when I saw the price board with 'Dingling Museum' written, I got very very confused whether it was still Ming Tomb or whose tomb. I was so confused I stopped asking Pinky before she explained until she fainted. She was rather confuse herself so we just walked around and started snapping photos. We were thinking of getting our own tickets and make a fast visit into the underground tomb. I wouldn't want to do so and thank God we didn't waste our money because they came out and told us that no photography allowed in order to respect the dead. 

There were quite a few interesting stuff for sale at the parking bay. I was very interested to get the handmade umbrella for mi mama. The lady refused to lower down the price so I refused to buy. Thank God for not buying or else I would have difficulty bringing it back in one piece. I have no extra space in my luggage when I was lugging it back. That wolf skin was real, that's what the lady said. 
I like this shot particularly because I can never get to experience this back at home. Malaysia is rich with greens with our rainforest jungle. It's a rare sight to me seeing the bald trees. Not such a bad experience in Beijing and when they came back from the visit, we told them of what a crook the tour guide was. A few of them asked for their money back for other future events. Hahahhaa... the truth shall set everyone free. He shouldn't have lied that way to earn money.