If I were a carpenter…

Well, I’m not…and neither am I going to talk about carpenters, just Carpenter Street in Kuching. I wonder how it got its name…for I used to hang around there as early as the 70’s but I don’t recall seeing any carpenter or a lot of carpenter shops – maybe a couple selling local-made furniture, that was all.

What I remember about the street was that there was a wide open section among one of the shop blocks. It may still be there today and it used to double as a temple and on certain festivals, they would have the Chinese wayang (opera shows) there. At other times, there were food stalls though I won’t know whether it’s the same today. I loved the kolo mee there and also that at a coffee shop further down the road at a T-junction, Carpenter Street with either Bishopgate or Temple Street.

Gerrie sent me this photograph of the kolo mee at Kim Joo coffee shop along Carpenter Street…

Kolo mee @ Kim Joo, Carpenter Street

I don’t know if it’s the same coffeeshop that I used to go to but I can recall they had liver and all the pig’s innards. It was really delicious and what impressed me most was the waiter. Though a mere kid, he was able to remember what everybody wanted or did not want even though there were 5 or 6 of us. He did not even have to write it down and he would get all the orders correct. These days, you get those dumbos…and even though they write it down, they still mess everything up!

If I am not mistaken, there was a very popular restuarant there – Ang Lee Restaurant or something. Well, it was definitely not named after the famous movie director, that’s for sure, for it existed long before that guy came into the limelight! I had dinners there a few times but I can’t exactly place a finger on what the specialty of the house was. I think it could be the char siew there that was nice, I’m not too sure.

Well, I used to go to Carpenter Street a lot because I had a lot of friends in that vicinity. I knew a girl at the first shop on the right behind the General Post Office, and I had a friend who ran a stall selling sweets, tidbits and so on in between two blocks of shop houses at one of the T-junctions. Then I had a friend at Bishopgate and one at Temple Street and more at Main Bazaar. Sigh!!! Time and tide waits for no man…and in a blink of an eye, all that remain are the sweet memories of the happy moments we shared a long, long time ago. I do not know where they are now; I only hope they are all doing fine and leading happy lives. Who knows, one day, we may meet…but I won’t know whether we can still recognise one another anymore. After all, that was some 30-40 years ago…

Author: suituapui

Ancient relic but very young at heart. Enjoys food and cooking...and travelling and being with friends.

20 thoughts on “If I were a carpenter…”

  1. STP, am hungry rite now…yummy chasau/char siew!

    I’m very very hungry too!!! Been watching my diet, damn gout! But I’m quite ok now, thank goodness! Can’t wait to start eating again! Some people never learn… LOL!!!

  2. The next time you come to Kuching maybe you should go over to Carpenter Street and see whether your friends still around? Maybe they have grandchildren already? I still go there to buy pork satay and fish ball soup at lau yieh keng.

    Who knows? Some of my blogger friends may be their children!!!…Gee! And their parents were my friends – spanning two generations! Forever young!!! Hahahahahaha!!!!…..That’s right! I think that temple place is called lau eya keng!

  3. That coffee shop is one of the dirtiest, got lots of rats running around in the drains and the mee seller in one of the rudest. Dont you dare ask her if your mee is ready. She will glare at you till you feel like hiding under your chair.I have not been there for almost 20 years. It is still there and as crowded.

    Just like the kampua-beef soup woman near Kidney Foundation or the laksa man at MAS Corner here!!! And yet, always so crowded…and by 10.00 a.m. no more!!!

  4. The soup got taugeh in it. I miss that in Sibu.

    So when’s ur next trip to Kuching?…When I go again, I’ll definitely make my way back there to eat that!!!

  5. ooh carpenter street…kch’s version of chinatown popular for their old chinese food stalls but nvr tried b4 :p.. wooaahhh pig inerts ftw! but i heard ppl say its not healthy..too badlo

    Well, people also say, “Forbidden fruit is sweeter!” LOL!!! I thought Padungan would be more of a Chinatown? Nothing much in Carpenter Street, I would think…other than the two eating places…and Ang Lee, if it’s still in bizniz!

  6. so… were u EYEING te girl behind the post office?? tell la… better still, tell us abt all yr lovey dovey stories… heehehee…

    Nothing sexciting lah! Her rich, widowed mum very sporting…would bring her and her friends and me and the other guys for dinner and dancing at the Aurora Ballroom (now Merdeka Palace Hotel), that’s all!! Just friends!

  7. lotsa place brings lotsa memories back hor .. It’s good to look back and remeniscing on those sweet memories .. he he he ..

    People my age cherish the happy memories, the not so happy ones we will just choose to forget!

  8. your posts really make me hungry! grrrrr………….

    i miss all the kampua!

    You’re not coming back home yet? For the holidays maybe?

  9. wow…i rarely go there…even tho im in kuching..tsk tsk tsk

    and i dono any ang lee restaurant there also…could be already gulung tikar 😛

    And you actually live in Kuching!…I think it’s still open. If you google the name, you’ll find it listed…under low budget eateries for rice, noodles.

  10. Oh oh… Man-D, if we have the extra time, we might even get the chance to check out that place! LOL … you know that one friend of ours who just love eating pig innards and brain, Man-D? hehehe .. not for me though 😛

    Oh!!! That friend of urs going to RWMF also? Gee! The whole KK population will be in Kuching then kah? LOL!!!

  11. There used to be a kopitiam there and when the Courts were still running around there then ,we could order our drinks and food and this particular old man would deliver, come rain or shine. No Pizzahut then. The last time I was back the kopitiam is still there. Not sure about the old man though!! At night after all the boozing, the best place to eat is the stall in the temple. The hot and spicy soup will sober you up!

    Aha!!! I’m not the only one with memories of that street!!! LOL!!!

  12. Ala STP.. just 4 of us friends bah … 😛 all ladies.. that Chi is not going with us… as far as I know lah…Chi, you going also or you’ll be the one sending us to the airport? LOL

    Aduh! That Chi become Ahmad lah! Driver! Hahahahahahaha!!!! Cibol said last time that he’ll be there…and I’m sure ada gula, semut pun datang lah! Ahem! Ahem! Hahahahahahahaha!!!!!

  13. Gundot, I think you’re mistaken. You’re probably referring to the corner coffeeshop where you even have to wait to order. This is a small one towards the end, very near the red temple exit. This one not as popular as the “dirty” one, and apparently the fried rice, noodles etc are quite nice. Have not had the opportunity to try them yet.

    Oh? This isn’t the popular corner coffee shop??? A new one?…Fried noodles too? Kuching-style? With tomato sauce? Drool! Drool! Oooo….can’t wait to try!!! LOL!!!

  14. The shop still around ah? Will go hunt for it then.. Hehehehe…

    You like Pinkcotton…oso dunno got such a place kah! Aiyor! This Sibu ah pek knows better lor!!! Hahahahahaha!!!!

  15. You stayed there or you know ppl from there? I grew up there. I know most of the place you mentioned. I still go to Ang Lee to eat curry rice. Beside Ang Lee, there used to have a very nice pork leg rice stall. If you go after 12pm, you sure eat nothing. The pisang goreng stall in front of lau ya keng is very nice too. I like the yam goreng too. Sukun is not bad too. Then, the lau ya keng has very nice kolok mee and fish ball soup in the evening with the pork satay plus the duck/fish porridge at night. The one selling ‘kai chuk’ at night was very famous too. It has moved to Nanas Road. It is still very popular. If you stay in that area, you might know me very well. wakakaka… I am the samseng cha bor there.

    Ah yes! The curry rice was so nice!!! I knew there was something special in Ang Lee that I liked!!!…..I was in Sibu but during the hols, I would go to Kuching and hang around there cos I had a lot of friends there. The “request fans” in those days lah!!! Lau eya keng…I only went for the kolo mee, the stall furthest inside on the right. U from Carpenter Street? Small world! But early 70s, your parents not even married lah!!! Still young like me then! Hahahahahahaha!!!

  16. Oh yes… the one who delivered drinks around courthouse and post office area is from Beng Heng Kopitiam. I always called him Ah Heng! Ah Heng, Cola No Ki! (Two bottle of cola lar!)

    U’re from that area too? Gee…I could have been dating ur mum or something! Hahahahahahaha!!!!!

  17. Trip down memory lane eh STP…

    Our Boss likes to tapau for us colleagues those chicken puffs etc from some coffeeshop on that street but I don’t know which one…VERY NICE!!!

    Chicken puffs?…You mean the meat pastries (pork!) and curry puffs from Kai Joo Lane!!! Ooooo…..I love those!!! But that’s along India Street leh?

  18. Yup…those pastries…they said Carpenter Street leh…Dunno. India Street where got eatery? All clothes shop leh (mostly)…if so,what’s the name of the shop? Wanna try find. Hehe.

    Gee! Me Sibu people know better!!!…..Kai Joo lane lah…the lane with a lot of coffin shops, joining India Street to that Central Police Station road. There are two shops selling pastries there so u have to go to the right one, I think it’s the 2nd one if you’re coming from India Street… Got one type they put century egg too! Nice! And also got yam puffs! Also nice!! Slurpszzzz!!!!

  19. He’s not going with us lah Melbie, STP! Im there to cuci mata…who knows tersangkut with ‘omputih’…lol…

    Oh…kesian! Hahahahahaha!!!! Well, good luck to u then!!! LOL!!!

  20. Gee…
    Making me hungry reading all these posts about yummy food. Heheh…

    Welcome, Chris! Nice of you to drop by!…You’ll get to see lots of that in my blog. The readers seem to love it! Not so much into anything too heavy!!! Hahahahahaha!!!!

All opinions expressed in my blog are solely my own, that is my prerogative - you may or may not agree, that is yours. To each his/her own. For food and other reviews, you may email me at sibutuapui@yahoo.com

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