A Christmas Tree and a Friend’s Visit


I went back to Penang for Bonnie’s wedding dinner that weekend. (She and I – and some of our other friends – have been friends for 21 years now!) Before returning to KL on Sunday, I went with my family to catch E&O Hotel’s Christmas tree-lighting ceremony.

It wasn’t quite as magnificently decorated as some other Christmas trees I’ve seen…

However, the atmosphere felt so familiar. It took a few seconds for me to register the familiarity – it felt like my graduation after-party back in Edinburgh, when we (the grads in the Humanities – I think it was the Humanities? Or whatever group Film Studies belonged too, haha – and guests) were directed to one of the libraries to have drinks and mingle. Yep. It felt like that. Only much more crowded. It was probably the presence of so many Caucasians in the room, and the finger food and drinks, and the slightly cooler air that did it for me. I got slightly nostalgic.

And speaking of nostalgia!

Awesomesauce friend Journey finally came to visit this year!

This was back in September but somehow I never got around to mentioning it. 8/a

Played tour guide and showed him Penang… Parts of it, anyway. The trip was too short :( But I think we covered the major sites.

The pleasant seaview of Northam Beach Cafe at sunset.

Has anyone who has walked around Georgetown’s heritage zone not seen this yet? haha

Cat and primary colours.

A small bottle in the Peranakan Mansion. I haven’t yet figured out why I’m so drawn to vintage packaging…

Much to my annoyance, I discovered that not only has the Peranakan Mansion doubled the entry fee, but they’ve stopped giving guided tours except to big groups. Whaaaat. x(  They have a new section that’s a sort of small jewelry museum which isn’t too bad (it’s air-conditioned, which is a big plus haha) but I’m peeved about the loss of the guided tours.

Found that the Khoo Kongsi has a mini museum-like section now, which talks mostly about the Khoo clan and has some stuff about the architecture of the temple. But this display interested me the most, and I thought it was especially good for tourists. It was a display of the generational names of the Khoo clan – from the 8th generation to the 47th. Currently I think they’ve barely even reached the 20th. (My memory of that is a bit fuzzy.)

St. George’s Church, oldest Anglican church in Southeast Asia. (I may have neglected to mention that part to Journey, now that I think about it…)

Paid a brief visit to one of the clan jetties at night. This is the only one that’s all lit up – I think the others should do something similar.

We were in KL for a night. Because he wanted to see the vaunted Petronas Twin Towers. There wasn’t anything else in KL that he really wanted to do besides see the towers. hahaha We did drop by the Islamic Arts Museum though. It’s a spacious museum, but maybe a little too big for the collection it has right now.

(I mostly remember that Yan’s jaw just about fell onto the table when we demonstrated how two Film Studies grads play the “Movies” category in the Heads Up app game over dinner in KL… :)) I’ve no doubt that if it had been Jemma or Patrick or Pranav playing with Journey instead of me it would’ve been about three times more impressive because my mental movie database isn’t half as good as all of theirs.)

Ah, we went to Kek Lok Si in Penang too.

Hungry tortoises.

The area around the tortoise pond is terribly maintained. It looked almost like some abandoned place, with weeds and debris piled up on one side. Seriously, they need to clean up that area.

The temple itself is much better maintained. Fortunately.

Hmm. I have less photos than I thought of that week. I was just too lazy to carry around my camera and besides, the tour guide can’t be the one stopping endlessly to take pictures. haha But I had a blast! Come visit again, J. :D


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