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Little boy…

I was at their wedding in September, 2013 and they had a son, Kingsley, a year later. Of course, I was delighted when Jimmy and Juliet invited me to the little boy’s 1st birthday party…

Kingsley's birthday cake

here.

No, they did not enlist the help of an event planner and did most everything themselves…

Birthday decor

…right down to the labels on the bottles of water…

Bottle label

…and everything. Gosh!

I cannot remember having many birthday parties when I was a kid. I know I had one once as I remember seeing a photograph somewhere of me cutting the birthday cake and my great-grandma standing beside me. Then, there was another one much later when I was in upper primary school but I don’t recall much of it either other than the fact that some of my classmates from school were there. One that I remember only too well was in 1972 when I was 20 – there was a cake, food and after that, we had dancing! But no, we did not bother very much about the decor and all that. I’ve seen in some blogs or elsewhere those birthday parties where they recruited some people to organise the whole thing and they even set up a playground in the garden for the children to play! Kids really have it so good these days, not like during my time.

There was the singing of the birthday song, of course…

Happy birthday

…and the blowing out of the candle and the cutting of the cake, followed by dinner…

Buffet 1

I didn’t take photographs of everything in the buffet spread, of course…

Buffet 2

– just these two.

It sure was nice to be invited to share the joy of this very happy occasion with them and their family and friends that night and upon leaving, I was given one of these door gifts…

Door gifts

…that they had prepared. Inside…

Door gift

…were one lovely cupcake, some sweets and an egg, coloured red in line with the age-old Chinese tradition.

Well, if anyone is curious as to what I gave little Kingsley, I got him this Korean-made patchwork quilt

Birthday present
*Juliet’s photo on Facebook*

I thought of getting him the Bob the Builder one but he might not be into that cartoon character so much (plus I did not think it was all that nice) and there was one very pretty one but I thought that would be more appropriate for girls so that was why in the end, I got him this one that my girl liked and I would agree that it was quite a good choice too. What do you all think?

Thank you once again, Jimmy and Juliet, for the invitation – now, I’m looking forward to the next one! Wink! Wink! Hehehehehehe!!!!

Dime a dozen…

No, you can’t get anything for one cent here…

One Cent

…not even for a dime…

Nothing for one cent

…despite the name. I’ve blogged about this place a few times before including that time in 2012 when I was here with my blogger friends from the peninsula and once when I was here with my young blogger friend for breakfast.

Well, if anyone is interested in the exact location (2.311277,111.847358), it is to the extreme left (facing Jalan Sena) among the shops in the Lot 9 area, right across Jalan Pedada from this mall…

Delta Mall

…and these are their opening hours…

Opening hours

It sure looks like they are open every day but be forewarned that some of the stalls may take a day off each week, like this one…

Closed

…which, I understand, sells every nice mee sua and they have something with their own home-made fish balls as well.

Food handling course certificate

My! It even has this certificate from a food-handling course that I hear, is compulsory for everyone in the food business in this town to attend in order that they may be allowed to carry on with their trade.

Well, since it was closed, I had to order something from another stall at that place and I had this (RM4.00)…

One Cent Fried lao shu fun

…the fried lao shu fun (rice drops) and yes, I would say it was very good indeed.

I also ordered the Sarawak laksa (RM4.50)…

One Cent Sarawak laksa

…to try. The broth was very good but I did not like the egg that way. For Sarawak laksa, it would have to be an omelette, fried very thinly and sliced just as thinly too. Other than that, I thought they could give less of the shredded chicken and tofu puffs and substitute those with a prawn or two even if those would have to be somewhat small ones.

My missus had the fried tom yam mee (RM5.00)…

One Cent fried tom yam mee

…from another stall and she said it was good as well.

People always say that one can tell whether the food is good or not by looking at the crowd and yes, this place was very crowded when my missus and I dropped by that morning.

On our way home, I saw this banner on the road…

BCF

It’s coming soon! The Borneo Cultural Festival, from the 30th of July till the 8th of August. That week would be a good time to come to Sibu and after that, you can hop over to Kuching for the renowned Rainforest World Music Festival from the 7th till the 9th of August this year…and you can fly back home from there, two birds with one stone. Any takers?

Eighty-two…

My mother-in-law celebrated her 82nd birthday…

Birthday cake

…last Wednesday, the 15th of July, but we had a small celebration earlier that Saturday evening before the actual date so that the grandson from KL and her grand-daughter from Singapore could fly back to join in the dinner. Yes, it was the birthday cake that we would order everytime as  my niece, the grand-daughter in Singapore, loves it so much and would insist on it and it alone.

We all got together at this restaurant, together with my two brothers-in-law and their wives and in keeping with the tradition, the evening started off with the longevity mee sua, fried…

Sheraton mee sua

…that came with a “golden egg”.

That was followed by the “hot plate”…

Sheraton hot plate

…our version of the Four Seasons except that we have a lot more than just four here.

Here, you can see the filial grandson…

Sangkaya

…dishing out some of the goodies from that platter for his grandma. I don’t know if he and his Thai girlfriend beside him would look familiar to any of you. Perhaps some of you may have seen them in person or on Facebook or in the newspapers or on TV – they are the people behind that Sangkaya coconut ice cream venture found at many places in KL and I hear it’s available at AEON in Seremban as well now and will be available in Malacca very soon.

There was this 2-in-1 chicken…

Sheraton 2-in-1 chicken

…roast chicken on one side and Thai-style chicken on the other or in fact, it was 3-in-1 as there was also the Thai-style jelly fish in the dish. We had this same thing not too long ago here.

Then, of course, we had their signature dish – the curry fish…

Sheraton fish curry

…with rice except that this time we had fish, not the head but I would prefer the latter as I did not quite like the texture and taste of the fish they used that night – everything else was great, of course and as always, the gravy went absolutely well with rice.

We had these spare ribs…

Sheraton qui-fei ribs

a number of times before too except that this time, they were served in a yam basket though it did not look like the ones I would be more accustomed with – those in which they would serve the mixed vegetables.

Talking about vegetables, we had broccoli…

Sheraton broccoli

…and everything inside the ring and a soup dish plus a fruit platter at the end.

My very nice niece and nephew (the grand-daughter and the grandson) picked up the tab and shared everything between the two of them. This was RM500.00 (excluding GST) which I thought was rather expensive for a 7+1 dish set dinner. We did not even have prawns other than what they served in the “hot plate”…

Sheraton prawns

…and I was told that there was a standard RM20.00 charge for the rice served with the curry, never mind whether somebody wanted just a spoonful or a big scoop or two, RM2.00 per head for 10 persons…and of course, the plate of stewed peanuts on the table at the start of the dinner did not come for free and neither did the wet towels at the end. Other than those, there were the charges for the drinks that we had and the 6% GST and I overheard them talking about a RM5.00 service charge  or something or was that for the corkage for some special beer or wine that they brought along?  All in all , the total came up to over RM580.00, almost RM600.00. Well, I would say the service was very good and the dishes were served promptly, piping hot from the kitchen and other than the aforementioned not-so-nice fish used, everything tasted fine but all things considered, I would much sooner go for the very much nicer RM400.00 set that we had at the other place here where I could request for the use of the VIP room, away from the crowds at the other tables and all the noise and everything…and I could sing karaoke too! Hehehehehe!!!!

Lend a hand…

It was two Saturdays ago, the 11th of July, when my girl and the mum and her colleague/housemate and I dropped by here…

Agape Centre

My girl used to teach here voluntarily, for free, of course, to help out with the people there who are doing their bit for the children with special needs…

For children with special needs

Unfortunately, eventually, she was posted to a school in the Selangau district so far away and she only comes home on weekends so dropping by in the afternoon to help out is out of the question.

It is a very nice place…

Agape play area

…with offices, classrooms and even a nice play area that is a joint-contribution of the Japanese Chamber of Trade and Industry…

Jactim

Well, we were there that day for the fund-raising food fair…

Banner

…in aid of the Sibu Autistic Association. Sometime ago, I bought a few booklets of the coupons that could be used to buy whatever we would fancy at this fair.

There were many stalls and many people though I would say I was kind of disappointed that there wasn’t anything that really stood out. Perhaps they should rope in the big hotels or those very popular cafes and restaurants in town to come in and sell some really nice things and all the proceeds would go to the charitable cause. Day in day out, they are making a whole lot of money from the many customers that walk through their doors – it would be good if they could give back a little bit for a good cause in that just-one-morning affair.

There was this stall serving free samples and selling the drinks…

Drinks

…and stalls like this one…

Kim chi

– I think they were selling kim chi and there were others selling eggs, pineapples, salted vegetables and packets of bihun

Pineapples and so on

…and even potted plants…

Potted plants

This stall certainly enjoyed brisk business…

Burger stall

…but we did not get anything from there…

Burger

…and it was rather crowded and there was a long queue and we were told that we would have to wait for at least half an hour.

In the end, my missus used up all the coupons to buy one herbal roast chicken (which was really very nice) and some cakes and my girl bought some fish…

Fish

They also bought some acar (pickles) from this stall…

Acar stall

…not knowing that I had stopped there earlier and I had paid cash to buy that same thing…

Acar

…for my mum who seemed to enjoy eating that with her rice these days.

I would say that the fair was a huge success – the people selling the coupons must have done a really good job and I saw a lot of people going home with the cartons of eggs…or the packet drinks. Even those people selling the things were volunteers from some commercial firms, clubs and associations and others so kudos to all of them for chipping in and helping out. I told my girl that maybe if they have another one next year, I can volunteer too and set up a stall selling maybe…my pancakes…or popiah…or pies…or fried rice…or some special ethnic Melanau or Malay delights and she agreed that it was a great idea and it would be very nice if we could also go and in some small way, lend a hand…

Fly away with me…

I took off the other day to fly over to Kuching for a few days – on a 3-day 2-night trip, to be exact.

So there I was at the Sibu airport waiting for my flight. Hmmm…maybe this would be the standard sign…

Sibu airport sign

…that they would use at all airports throughout the country but ours is a domestic airport so all flights in and out would be dalam negeri (within the country) and confined to destinations in Sarawak, Sabah and Peninsular Malaysia only so I would think balai perlepasan/departure lounge would suffice. Never mind – it’s just a sign, anyway and as long as it serves its purpose, that is all that matters.

I checked the website and was delighted to see that the aircraft was about to depart from Kuching and was already “taxiing on the runway“, well ahead of the scheduled departure time. After a while, I saw an aircraft landing but I guessed that must have flown in from some place else. It couldn’t possibly be the one I would be taking as it had just left Kuching not that long ago. I certainly was pleasantly surprised when the announcement was made and we were asked to get ready for boarding. It was my flight, after all!

As always, everything was done very systematically and in a very orderly manner and in no time at all, we were on the skybridge…

On the skybridge

…getting into the plane. I certainly was delighted that we did not have to go out into the sun and walk all the way to board…

Air Asia

…as it was so very hot, the midday sun!

I was seated at No. 15D – I’ve always known for a fact that one would have to pay more for the red-coloured hot seats

Air Asia cabin

…but it appeared to me when I made my booking online that now, the ones in between would cost a little bit more than those from Row 15 onwards. Well, I was in no hurry so I was quite happy to choose something a little bit cheaper and it was not all that far from the front, anyway.

Gosh!!! The flight was almost full and that surprised me somewhat as it was a weekday and not during any school or public holidays. We landed in Kuching in no time at all, way ahead of schedule, of course.

After dropping by my uncle and my auntie’s houses along the way to drop off some stuff that I had bought for them from Sibu, I went and had my rather late lunch…

My lunch

If you’re wondering what that was that I had and where, drop by tomorrow and I will tell you all about it!

You make me feel like dancing…

Gee!!! They sure have a way with names at this stall…

Addy Adabi Senduk Menari

…at the Ramadhan Bazaar at Bandong here. Addy Adabi Senduk Menari – hey, that rhymes!!! And Senduk Menari means the Dancing Ladle! Hmmm…that sure is a nice way of putting it – how the ladle moves when one is cooking.

According to this sign…

Sign

…they sell the local kampung (village)-style delights here…

Abby Adabi

…and I was rather amused by what they have on their menu here…

Menu 1

…and also here…

Menu 2

…with names of songs such as The Power of Love…and hits by local singers such as Fauziah Latif and Zaiton Sameon.

It would be interesting to see what they would call each dish…

Dishes

…if they were to label each and every one individually, Labu dan labi for the pumpkin (RM5.00) perhaps…

Pumpkin

…and kenek kenek udang for the prawns (RM10.00)…

Prawns

– the two that I bought home for dinner that day.

If you’ve noticed from the first photograph, they have managed to complete the construction of the hawker stalls

Bandong Walk

…in time for Ramadhan. I think there is a ruling in the peninsula that states that they must not start selling before 3.00 p.m. but I guess they are not so strict here so there were a few things available…

Choices

…even though I was there at around 2.00 p.m…

Grilled fish

…to send my car to the car wash on the other side of the road but many stalls were still closed at the time.

I also bought this rojak (RM3.00)…

Rojak

…generally known as Rojak Kassim after the celebrated one here a long time ago (now based in Kuching), our version of the so-called Indian rojak though to me it is more like the Indonesian gado-gado. This was really very good but it sure did not come cheap! All that was in it were some cucur (fritters), tofu puff and cucumber. They did give quite a lot of the very nice gravy though so if ever I were to buy this again, I certainly would want to add my own boiled potatoes and egg.

I guess there is no point going too early as there would not be very much one could choose from and buy though I certainly would prefer to go before 4 and definitely not after office hours by which time the place would be so jammed packed and one would probably have to park very very far away and walk all the way to the bazaar and the weather these days has not been all that kind – it’s so very very hot here…every day!

Yes, my darling daughter…

Last Sunday, the 3rd Sunday in June, was Father’s Day. We had a delightful family dinner together the previous night to celebrate that simultaneously with the Dumpling or Dragon Boat Festival, with a lovely cake thrown in for good measure.

My girl did get me a present – some lovely t-shirts and believe you me, it is not easy trying to find any my size these days…and I would insist on white ones some more so that would make it even more difficult but somehow, she did manage to get me quite a few at one go. Then, she said she would want to take me out for a nice treat after the Sunday service in the morning (we could not go for the sunset one the previous evening as we were having our special dinner at my parents’ place) but I said that would not be necessary as we had celebrated the occasion altogether at one go and she had got me a present as well. However, she would not take no for an answer and in the end, I had to give in.

Most of the nicer/classier cafes and restaurants would not open till 11 or noon and that would be rather late as it being a Sunday, I would have to drive my girl back to her school for the week so in the end we decided to drop by this Chinese restaurant

Good Happiness dim sum

…for a dim sum breakfast.

They have some things on a trolley now – something that I did not notice on my previous visits but I did not really fancy what they had on it that morning – chicken claws (Shudders!!!), steamed pork ribs with black fermented beans and these…

Rolls 1

…which we decided to try. They were very nice but I think these…

Rolls 2

…that I ordered from their menu were nicer – prawns wrapped in bean curd skin or something.

I asked for these dumplings…

Dumplings

…for my girl – she seems to love those a lot and yes, the lightly pan-fried ones here were pretty good and very much to her liking.

We also had their very nice yam cake…

Yam cake

…steamed and pan-fried lightly as well. They really did it so well with the fragrance of the fried shallots and garlic and the sweetness and taste of the udang kering (dried prawns) and they had tiny chunks of yam in it – unlike most others where they would just mash the yam and add flour, lots of it, to come out with something very wobbly and not at all nice…and no, it was yam, not chai thow (Chinese white carrot/radish) – I did ask but they did not have that unlike another place here where they would serve that this same way or fry it with egg (chai thow koi/koay khak).

Other than those, we had the usual dim sum favourites – the har kao (prawn dumplings)…

Har kao

…and the char siew (BBQ meat) pao

Char siew pao

…and we also had their Foochow-style fried noodles…

Foochow fried noodles

…so after that rather heavy breakfast, we could skip lunch for the day.

The bill came up to RM61.40 (exclusive of GST) for the four of us, including my girl’s colleague/housemate who was down for the weekend too and while she was paying at the counter, I walked around the place and spotted this lovely vase…

Vase

I have this soft spot for blue and white but then again, I don’t think I would want a vase – whatever would I want one for.

That certainly was a scrumptious Father’s Day treat and we all enjoyed it very much – thank you so much, my darling daughter.