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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Weekend Before Christmas

We didn't have any holiday plans for Amber and decided to go Malacca for a short visit. A very last moment decision and since it's also school holidays and Christmas being very near, it wasn't  a wise decision. Malacca was packed, the whole town was congested.
It was flooded.

Flooded with Singaporeans. 

No offense but I see more 'S' car plates than M'sian cars.

We're lucky to get a room through a contact as all other hotels were fully booked. We left for Malacca early Saturday morning, with this in mind :

 Yummylicious lip smacking chicken rice balls. 

This place is where locals go and recommended by my colleague, Anthony. After previous disappointed visits to the chicken rice balls at Jonker's Street, Anthony checked out this place for me and warned me to be there early. The tau-keh closes shop when her chicken rice balls sells out and that can be as early as noon, depending on the crowd. I can't read Chinese but this is easy to locate. Follow the sign to Pusat Bandaraya, past the Malacca Hospital, next to Wang Food Court, once you see a makan shack under a big tree and you're spot on !

We met up with Thomas, Joanne and Sharon at Malacca. Thomas was our tour guide of honour and other than the chicken rice place, which was on my priority list, I let him take the lead on where to eat and what to do. .

He took us for a hike up St John's Fort. Perfect to burn off the chicken rice.
 Hiking up to St. John's fort, we found these saga trees, a reminiscence of my childhood, where saga tree grows in abundance near the stone hall of my primary school :
I collected a handful home. Amber wants to do something artsy with it.. perhaps stick it on a cardboard to the shape of a butterfly. I have better ideas. I might just sew five stones with them. I miss my childhood days of playing five stones by the corridor of my classroom.


and everyone roped in to help pick up the tiny red saga seeds.
 the kids were too happy to playing catch ...

and laughing...
and screaming too.
 Amber plucked some flowers and asked me to clip to her hair.
 On our way down, we found someone selling fresh coconut. A refreshing treat for all of us.

And the daddies did something silly, they asked the girls to climb up the pinang tree :P

and the 2 little monkeys tried and called for help when they realised it wasn't easy being a monkey :)

 Our next stop was A Farmosa Fort and St Paul's Church..

Again, an interesting photography place with lotsa space for kids to run around


By late afternoon, the kids were flat out and so were we. Took a short nap, showered and hit the streets again.

Wanted to take the River Cruise but the queue was too long.

The kids were in tears, they could only see the barge go past and waved to each barge :(

We hopped on to the Portuguese Settlement at Ujong Pasir.
This one is a must during Christmas time. Most of the houses (at least 90%) was decorated with Christmas splendor. I've never seen such elaborate decorations, really amazing.

As usual, it was very crowded and many residence were expecting tourist, we chatted with some and they told us all lighting and decoratives are at their own expense. No sponsorship from the state government except for a few houses with Aik Cheong, Julie biscuits or Tiger logo. We only made a short stop, take some pics and head off for supper at Jonker's Street's Geographer's Cafe.

Guess who had most fun at Geographer's Cafe ?
After a few jug of beer, the daddies took their princesses to the dance floor and disco-ed away. 
We moms, too old for the dance floor, just relaxed, had a few drinks and took pics.

When the daddies got tired of dancing (they are old too !!!), the girls took on the dance floor 
Look at Amber, it was already past midnight and she's still jiving away with Sharon..

The next morning, after breakfast, we went straight for the cruise. The girls has been nagging about it all night and chanting in their sleep and there's no way we can return to KL without boarding the river cruise.

We were early, we got our tickets and waited for around 15 minutes for our turn :
 The cruise is 45 minutes long and goes along the Malacca River... to and fro. Something exciting for the girls but I fell asleep during the journey *yawn*

Then hubs took some photos of the girls near the riverfront while I sneaked out for shopping at Jonker's Street. 

Then Thomas took us for the famous Malaccan pork satay ..... it's slightly off Jonker's Street, and it was good.. the gravy is different from our usual Satay. Sweet and spicey with lots of blended pineapples. 
Very nice satay and definitely worth a trip back here again.

We left Malacca in the afternoon and got caught in a massive jam getting out of Malacca, again with Singaporean cars at our front, back and sides.. sigh.. took us an hour to get to Ayer Keroh toll.

That was our weekend before Christmas ! 

On the fifth day of Christmas,
my true love sent to me
Five golden rings,
Four calling birds,
Three French hens,
Two turtle doves,
And a partridge in a pear tree.