Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Muslim Food Street in Xi'an

Ramada Hotel - Bell Tower Xi'an

I would highly recommend that visitors could stay in the trendy Ramada Hotel Bell Tower in Xi'an when you are on holiday. The price is very reasonable and it is located in the busiest main street like Singapore's Orchard Road or Bangkok's Sukhumvit Road where it easily connects to many interesting places.

Drum Tower Xi'an is just beside the Muslim Food Street

You can easily walk to the ancient landmarks like The City Wall, Muslim Food Street, Bell Tower, Drum Tower and Subway train stations underground. We also enjoyed our daily hot coffee at Starbucks and snack breads from Tous Les Jours.

Muslim Food Street 

This famous & interesting Muslim Food Street is quite long and has
several main entrances that connects different streets. All the street
hawkers here are the Chinese Muslims who hail from
the ethnic "Hui Clan". Their facial features are very nice with
some Russian eyes & cheek bones.

 We saw the Monkey God (Sun Wukong) walking
all over and teased the ladies to pose photos with him.
He would charge them a fee, of course..

 This stall sells the cakes skewers that dip into
some sweet caramel.

Their fresh pomegranate juice was so refreshing and cheap!
It boosted up my energy and immunity.

We never missed their famous signature yoghurt in nice
white bottles. We brought home the bottles as souvenir
and converted them into pen holders.

 This is a tray full of very hot spicy bean curds. They were so
delicious and burnt my mouth.

 It was not a pleasant sight to see the carcasses of the lambs
hanging in several corners.

There are many stalls selling the famous Lamb Kebabs in skewers.
They eat a lot of lamb there.

This macho guy was showing off his stunts to pull the
sweet thick peanut caramel many times before cutting them.

Here they are cutting the soft peanut caramel before they harden into
sweets to be sold in plastic boxes.

This stall was selling their Spicy Noodles.

This stall was selling the preserved fruits which were harvested before winter.

 The above baskets trays are walnuts.

The dark coloured drinks are boiled dates with pears and honey.
They are really tasty and good for health.

 Many guys would shout loudly to attract the tourists as it was very competitive.
This guy was selling what is similar to our "Lok Lok" in bamboo sticks.

 Their bread looked very attractive and it is quite hard!
They could keep them for days and dip them into soups 
to eat. I think this is the common palate to the Hui and Uyghur
populations in the region of Xi'an and Kashgar in Xinjiang.

Rolled cigarettes are very cheap and popular which
comes in attractive tin containers.


Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Bad Postal Services

I was so angry and furious last week. My face looked like Angry Bird with smoke coming out of my feathers. Suddenly I remembered that I had posted over 10 postcards to many bloggers from Xi'an in China. That was Friday 2nd December when we walked a few kilometers in the cold weather from our hotel to the post office. Until today, I believe that no one has received. Aaarrrgggggh!!!

This the 3rd time all my postcards were either lost, misplaced, stolen or sunk in the Titanic Ship!! The first time in 2013 over 10 postcards were sent from Nanjing - China after arriving from Shanghai. I had time to kill while waiting to catch a bus to climb the Mount Jiuhuashan. We sat down and slowly wrote all the cards beside their big post office! Hilang! Lost in Bermuda Triangle! Niamah!

The second time happened in 2015 @ Manila and this has taught me a good lesson here. I was staying inside their swanky Makati hub and their postal services were unique. Customers would do their postal errands at the small "Postal Booths" inside the Greenbelt Shopping Mall. I posted all my 10 + cards at Booth A which never reached any of the bloggers till today!!!. Next day, my wife posted her own postcards at the Booth B beside that ill fated Booth A. All her postcards arrived her friends! That was the first time I saw independent postal booths offering such letter & parcel delivery services in Manila. Niamah!

The only countries which all my many postcards safely reached every single blogger were posted from Japan and Indonesia! We visited Japan many times and never encountered any problem besides their postal delivery is super fast! It took less than a week to reach Singapore and Malaysia. Banzai Japan!

We happily took some trouble to choose and buy the postcards before sitting down at Starbucks to write one by one with different personalized writing & greetings blah blah blah. I have checked with Small Kucing and SK. Both told me they have not received my postcards and must have "Gone With The Wind"... Adoooi! My heart is aching & bleeding now.... 

The bloggers whom I sent:
1. SK
2. Small Kucing
3. Marlina
4. Yannie
5. Angeline Chee
6. Reanaclaire
7. Wenn
8. Chris Au
9. Libby
10. Sharon Lim
11. Sheta
12. Hayley
13. Diane Teo

 I found a China's website to file complaints about my lost postcards!
So I quickly poured out my anguish and woes.

I got an instant reply so fast!! 

Have you ever encountered such postal nonsense like me?


Monday, January 16, 2017

Ride Camels At The Gobi Desert

Mingsha Sand Mountains - Dunhuang

We had the best experience in our lives!
We both rode big furry camels across a real desert in China!

We saved money by taking a bus from the downtown of Dunhuang
to the Mingsha Sand Mountains. My brilliant wife always led me
all the way as she is my navigator with a compass in her head.

Here she practiced riding a toy camel first.
Vistors can explore the sand dunes by camel, electric car, 
quad bike or by foot.

There are hundreds of camels with cute heads and pretty eye lashes.
In Winter, they were much relaxed with the very little tourist arrivals,
hence the camels had no duty to carry the tourists for many days.
During the peak summer period, thousands of tourists would visit and
the poor camels had to make over 20 trips each to ferry the tourists
daily across the very hot desert.

Riding a camel on this desert is a great experience.
The sun was shining very brightly yet it was very cold!

We could enjoy the beautiful wavy shapes of the smooth 
yellow dunes against the beautiful blue skies.

It was just like traveling the ancient Silk Road.
When the wind blows, you can hear the desert sand
singing! Scientists today are still baffled.

I was more adventurous and took out my selfie stick.
I took many shots in all angles until
the camel's jockey cautioned me not to frighten
the camels with my crazy feat with one hand holding
onto my camel.

Do I look gaya & stylo?

One for the family album. Myself, my wife and 2 camels.

Yeeehaaaw! Hope you enjoyed my camel rides.

Crescent Moon Spring

We walked to this Crescent Moon Spring which is an oasis with a lake
at the foot of Mingsha Mountains desert. It was built by the
Emperor Wu of the Western Han Dynasty(206 BC-9 AD).

My name in "An-Jing".
There so many small dogs all over Dunhuang. They are
very cute and obedient to follow us around.

This is the crescent shaped lake in the oasis.
The inscriptions on the stone slab read 
"Wowa Pond of the Han Dynasty(206 BC-220)". 
 Today this legendary lake is called Crescent Moon Springs.

There are many halls to the shrines.

My wifey posing with the little dog.

An ancient statue of the Bodhisattva Guan Yin
with rays of heavenly sunlight.

The ancient Pagoda tower in the complex.

A picturesque sight of the desert sands right behind
the ancient buildings.


Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Christmas Farewell Lunch

Happy New Year again to everyone! Let me share how my 30 hungry colleagues & clients ate & slaughtered my bosses during our annual Christmas lunch treat! My boss Dato Simon Lee threw a big lunch instead to coincide with the farewell of our client Mr. Kiyoshi Hayashi who was returning back to Japan. 

We all headed to this trendy seafood joint somewhere in
Bangsar. Look at how my colleagues ate and guess the
bill later.

They have a nice and cosy ambiance that reminds me of the
Fisherman's Wharf at the Bay Area in San Francisco.

We took up half section of the whole big restaurant. The Japanese
clients filled the first table with 3 Datuks entertaining them.

I always felt comfortable to sit with my Malay colleagues instead.

They serve fresh oysters which were air flown
from Holland, England & France!

My colleagues called so many servings of different oysters.

The first time I saw a Christmas Tree
made from many oyster shells.

I ordered the seafood soup and it was so
delicious & rich flavoured.

This is a huge serving of baked salmon fish, enough to feed
half dozen people.

A salmon dish with wasabi. So unusual.

 Huge lobsters for all.

A pan full of big prawns.

A pan of mixed seafood.

A hamburger with beef and crispy cut fries.

A beef steak with blood oozing out. Bluek!

A plate of poached salmon.

So many types of desserts ordered but this brownies is the best!

The damage was RM4,700.00

Ho Ho Ho Ho!


The Day My World Ended

At sunrise of 3rd August, my wife came to fetch me in her brand new car. She sped all the way through the morning traffic to Shah Alam. It w...