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Friday, September 08, 2006

A trip to cat city -- Day 2 (I)

I realized i forgot to watermark the images AFTER i've uploaded them.  

We had beef noodles for breakfast at the same kopitiam that we had dinner the night before.

Unlike the beef noodles in JB, it didn't come in black sauce and those fat yellow noodles. This was more like kolo mee with beef instead of BBQ pork. One look at it might give the impression that it was too dry and tasteless, but it was actually very good. The noodles were cooked just nice to the right firmness and the sauce was evenly distributed to every strain of noodles. Each mouthful deliver the flavour of fried onion oil and sesame oil, even though the beef cutlets weren't much to shout about.

After breakfast, we took a cab to the Sarawak Museum. There were two parts to the Museum, the Old Building and the Dewan Tun Abdul Razak, located on two different streets connected by an overcrossing. The Old Building itself was a historical monument. Its original form was built more than a century ago and it has a colonial architecture.

Frankly, both 贝 and i were greatly disappointed at what were inside the Museum. Most of the exhibits weren't labelled and the display were arranged indiscriminately. The exhibits appeared to be chunked together and gave the visitors a feeling that there were too many things with too little space. Some exhibits even had visible dust on them. It was really disappointing to see that we had failed to harness the rich culture of Sarawak to develop a world-class museum.

Totem pole in the compound of the Museum, against the backdrop of Merdeka Palace Hotel

Dewan Tun Abdul Razak is an exhibition gallery that supposedly displays arts and artifacts of historical values. During the time of our visit, there was an exhibition of Stephen Bennett's works. His paintings were simply awe-inspiring. In each portrait, he managed to capture the emotion of the person with every stroke of paint and the use of colors. No wonder the paintings could be sold as high as USD20K per piece. Oh, and the man himself arrived shortly after we were there admiring his works, and he gave 贝 a name card when i was answering a call from the office.

There was a small aquarium nearby, and its scale was more like a fish shop than an aquarium. Those tropical fishes on display were nothing much to look at, as we could see them in almost any aquatic shops.

Behind the aquarium was the War Memorial Park.

The park was very well-maintained, with all the shady trees, blooming flowers and a water fountain that was actually working. There was a War Memorial monument in the park, but we were more fascinated by something else.

Tombstones in the Park

We found it unbelievable that tombstones were scattered all over the park and every step might pretty well be stepping over someone's grave.

After the visit to the Park, we took a cab back to the hotel and then walked to the China Town. On the day before, we had already paid the hotel for an arrangement to the Sarawak Cultural Village in the afternoon. So we decided to have a simple meal, followed by a brew of nice coffee at a cafe that the famous blogger had recommended.

Since we arrived the day before, we had already had three meals of noodles, and so i decided to have chicken rice for lunch instead. 贝, on the other hand, decided to try out another dish that could only be found in Kuching.

Kam pua mee was very similar to kolo mee. In fact, we could hardly tell the difference, even though the people here seemed to distinguish it clearly, as we had seen most stalls had both dishes written on their sign boards.

After lunch, we went to the cafe that was said to serve the best coffee in Kuching.

Bing Coffee Company

We ordered the fresh brew.

And the price was rather steep.

But boy oh boy, it sure worth every cent of the price. The coffee was REALLY GOOD. In fact, it beats all the other coffee franchise hands-down, perhaps with the exception of Spinelli.

We sat in the cafe savouring the aromatic coffee and relaxing our mind and body amidst the Zen decor. The cafe had a nice ambience with comfortable sofa. My only qualm would probably be the mosquitoes that bit me on my toes.

On our way back to the hotel, we saw that there was still time for a quick visit to the tourist attraction that was marked as one of the historical heritage of Kuching.

Tua Pek Kong temple

Tua Pek Kong temple was located just in front of the Harbour View Hotel. It was a small temple but with great historical value. As shown on the wooden plate on the pillar, it existed even way back during the Qing Dynasty.

The date engraved on the plate was Qing Dynasty, reign of Emperor Xian Feng

I read from the official descriptions that during the Japanese invasion, all the surrounding buildings were bombed to the ruin but this temple stood undamaged. We thought that was pretty amazing.

We returned to the hotel and waited for the tourist van to pick us up to the next destination, the must-visit for all tourists of Kuching -- the Sarawak Cultural Village.


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Thursday, September 07, 2006 @ 3:13 am: COE bidding result
Wednesday, September 06, 2006 @ 3:34 am: More sian
Tuesday, September 05, 2006 @ 3:03 am: COE bidding
Monday, September 04, 2006 @ 3:29 am: Feeling sian
Friday, September 01, 2006 @ 2:36 am: It's a joyous day
Thursday, August 31, 2006 @ 2:01 am: A trip to cat city -- Day 1 (II)
Wednesday, August 30, 2006 @ 2:43 am: Stitches removed
Tuesday, August 29, 2006 @ 2:52 am: Gift vouchers
Monday, August 28, 2006 @ 2:21 am: The past weekend
Friday, August 25, 2006 @ 2:53 am: Busy and in pain