Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Welcome Dragon

The fireworks and firecrackers display wasn't as great as the CNY Dragon in 1988. This year was just average. There was only one home at my lane who burnt some crackers. The rest of us just enjoy watching other people 'burning' their money.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Thank you SpongeBob

You know your kid watches too much TV when…
He tell you that the clam meat is the clam’s tongue and the clams have little TV under the shell.

Friday, January 20, 2012

The North Borneo Railway, your passport to the British Colonial Era.

The first and last time I took the local train was to Papar more than 20 years ago for a school trip. I don’t remember much from that experience except for the uncomfortable seats and the tunnel.

There is something about tunnels that excites me till this very day.

Some historical facts on the railway system in Sabah can be found here.

The North Borneo Railway (NBR) steam train ride is only available every Wednesday and Saturday. The train departs from the Tanjung Aru train station at about 10am.

When you reach the train station, get your ticket and your ‘train passport’ at the NBR Counter, opposite the entrance to the train platform.  Before you board the train, remember to get your ‘train passport’ stamped.

The atmosphere of the station is lively and fun with the music from the colonial era blasting over the speaker. The friendly train staff dressed in white and khaki uniforms complete with the pith helmets welcomes you to board one of five the carriages.

As the train slowly departs from the station, a continental breakfast of assorted pastries and croissant is served with coffee or tea.

The view along the route changes as you pass by each station. From the Kota Kinabalu International Airport to the Petagas War Memorial, commercial centres to water villages and the glittering waters of the South China Sea to the delightful paddy fields.

One thing that doesn’t change though is the friendly faces of the locals who eagerly waves at the passengers as the train pass by. Even after riding the train many times, it doesn’t get old.

The first stop the steam train makes is at the Kinarut Station. Passengers are encouraged to visit the small town of Kinarut or the Tien Shi Temple located nearby.

The second stop is at Papar station. I recommend you to talk a short walk to the nearby market where you get to see the colourful everyday lives of the locals. They are very friendly, helpful and always ready to pose for the camera, if you ask them nicely.  There are also handicrafts, food and fruits for you to buy as souvenirs.

Try and look for the local Sabahan offerings like fruits: - Tarap, Bambangan, Durian, Rambutan. Snacks – Kuih Cincin, Kuih Lidah, Kuih Amplang, Penyeram.

Thirty minutes is not enough to see everything but it is sufficient to see a little bit of everything.

You could also stay at the train station and watch the head of the steam train making it's turn at the turntable to pull back the train back to KK.

On our back to the Tanjung Aru station, a delicious Tiffin lunch of Chicken Briyani Rice, vegetables, fish and satay with fresh fruits are served. For dessert, there is ice cream! What a joy it is to enjoy the ice cream onboard the steam train on a hot afternoon.

The view is pleasant and the experience of boarding a steam train older than my grandma is definitely one of its kind. I sit on the train and I forget about the rest of the world. The sound of the engine is surprisingly comforting. For real.

 There are not many steam train left in this lifetime, be a part of this British Colonial history in Sabah.

Price List
RM250.00 nett per adult
RM150.00 nett per child between 3 to 12 years olf
Complimentary for children under 2 years old

North Borneo Railway
Level 2, The Magellan Sutera Resort
1 Sutera Harbour Boulevard
88100 Kota Kinabalu
Sabah, Malaysia
Tel: (60 88) 308 500
Fax: (60 88)  311 136

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Chinese Horoscope

When I read my Y! Chinese horoscope prediction for this year, I must admit it put a smile on my face. Almost did my happy dance when I read the other animals’ sign.

Wedding bells are ringing for everyone.
*rolls eyes*

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Funny phrases

I was google-ing for some Iban phrases when I stumbled upon this particular phrase.
“Anang negu aku diak!”

It meant, “Don’t touch me there!”

My imagination runs wild as I try to understand the need for tourists to learn that phrase.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

marriage and babies

To an almost 7-year old, the world is simple.
Man meet woman. Fall in love. Get married. Have kids. Live happily ever after.
So when things didn’t work out that way, they would innocently question the whys.

The day I dreaded arrived not so gracefully.
We were having our nightly ‘talk’ when he whispered to me.
“Mommy, who did you marry?”
My heart literally sank.
“Why?” I asked.
“People get married and have children. So since you gave birth to me, who did you marry?”

I, Clara Lim, actually pretended to sleep and ignored the question.

And because he is my son who inherited my stubbornness, he asked me the question again few days later. This time I distracted him with something on TV.

By now, I can tell when he is about to jump into this topic. Like the other night. I quickly change the topic when he suddenly starts talking about marriage and babies. I have never been more thankful for his short attention span.

For a boy his age, he is sure thinking about this a great deal.

I had 7 years to think about this and yet I have come up with no solution. Maybe I should use the ‘seed story’ like in the movie, The Switch.

Either way, I need to come up with a solution quick. 

Monday, January 16, 2012

entry one 2012

I was the Christmas grouch and paid my Karma during the New Year.
So this year, I promise to be nicer during the holidays.

Ekiel started his Year One with much excitement. By 2nd day of class, he was determined not to go to school. Ever. It was really difficult to convince him that education is the best thing I can give him.

He even went all ‘reverse psychology’ on me.
“I don’t need anything else except you and my family mommy”.
“I miss you so much”.
“All I need is your love”.
Yes, such a sweet talker that boy.

I do feel bad I don’t get to spend much time with him during the first few days of school. In fact on the first day, I had a function and was only able to send him to class and pick him up the first day. Second day onwards went downhill according to my mom.

One time, in between his sobs, he brought it up, about me not making time for him and what not. My heart breaks but I really had no choice. *sighs*

If this is how the rest of the year will be like, I will lose my sanity in a couple of weeks. The only thing I am very certain at this point.

Cannot believe CNY is coming soon which means…
 I am not ready.

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Happy New Year People


A Joyful January
A Fabulous February
A Marvellous March
An Awesome April
A Magnificent May
A Jovial June
A Jolly July
An Amazing August
A Superb September
An Outstanding October
A Nice November
A Delightful December

My New Year resolution?
Get my Mr Right.
Boleh? LOL.