Up in the hills in Penang
I had visions of satay fish and the dodol when Hub mentioned that he would be going to Penang on a short business trip. While the island is not exactly the best place to procure said delicacies, Penang is still Malaysia and there will always a possibility of getting one's hands on them...
I therefore bought an air ticket on Silkair (frankly for the cost I could have imported a few boxes of the good stuff) and tagged along with Hub, taking the opportunity to visit dear Brother C and family when Hub was slaving away in endless meetings.
Some of you may remember his girl JM who used to be in the same school as the Babies in Modena. We visited them 2 summers ago when we were last back in Asia and they stuffed us to the brim with famous Penang food. My bathroom scale doth remember and protest so I made sure that I gave them no chances to feed me this time round - but of course it was quite futile, they managed to sneak in a "tiny"meal here and there whenever we met.
G Hotel lobby
Hub had a room at the G Hotel just next to the famous Gurney Plaza. Room was sea-view, spacious and very comfortable and the buffet breakfast was copious though not particularly delicious. There was only one particular Penang hawker dish that I wanted to indulge in on this trip and it was their Prawn Noodle Soup - usually so very rich and delicious. In fact, most of the time even in Singapore I couldn't have enough of this cholesterol laden soup.
G Hotel's lovely pool
Though the mall was just next door, I didn't do much shopping as most of my 2 days there was spent with the Cs. Evenings were for Hub and his colleagues, including the Italian GM of the Malaysian outfit who has a young and beautiful wife fully decked-out in diamonds. 2 days after this dinner I am pleased to mention that I finally got my bling earrings as a 10th wedding anniversary gift though hopefully I'd not need to wait another 10 years for the bling bracelet.
View of the sea from our hotel room
It was nice catching up with them as the couple is often very happening when it comes to the latest household gadget, so I've been introduced to a cooking robot of some sort. Really cool - and it works!
Don't you think that she has lost weight?
I also visited JM's current school one afternoon. It's a very good school with a small student-teacher ratio housed in an old building that is falling apart in places. JM has been topping her class in many subjects which is a feat considering that she did most of her earlier schooling in Italy under a different school system and with no Chinese or Malay.
One of the classrooms
Floor tiles at entrance of the school
The next time I visit Penang I should visit a museum. Those lovely floor tiles in JM's school sent me dreaming of heritage buildings and colonial times and should one forget, Penang is an UNESCO World Heritage site. Meanwhile, for the record, Singapore equalised with Malaysia (1-1) on our last evening in Penang and therefore made it into the next round of the World Cup Pre-qualifiers. I was the only person who shouted with joy as we walked past the outdoor plasma of some pub. Hub said I was mad to do that when we were the only non-Malaysians in the
lion tiger's den.