Yasmin’s Birthday

It was Yasmin’s birthday, and some of my ex-colleagues and I decided to ‘surprise’ her at her boyfriend’s house one Saturday evening (the bf was in the plan, of course). Another friend had successfully lured her out for the day while we went about the preparations.

The time came and it was raining like crazy, most of us got delayed because it was flooded everywhere in KL, the pizza came late, and basically everything to do with Murphy’s Law that could go wrong went wrong. When Yasmin finally came up to the apartment, she actually saw one of the guys standing from the kitchen window. He stooped down but it was too late, we weren’t prepared and I lighted up the candles in a record 2 seconds, and then when they came in we sang Happy Birthday lol.

Kind of a failed surprise, and then Yasmin decided to drop another bomb by telling us.. she already knew our plan two days ago! What??!!

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Turns out she accidentally saw our Whatsapp group on her bf’s phone (which we named Yasmin’s Birthday Plan), haha! Although the surprise was spoiled, it was all good coz we still had loads of fun. 🙂

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Red velvet cake with cream cheese and macarons, Pizza from Domino’s and a buttload of snacks which we munched on while catching up, goofing around and watching TV as the storm raged outside.

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Ex-colleagues from the newspaper! Since I left last year, we haven’t had a gathering like this really. It was nice catching up with those I was close to, and getting to know those I wasn’t so close to like Nelly and Feisol. I haven’t laughed as hard as I have in such a long time, especially when we were playing with the Boomerang app and Snapchat.

A video posted by erisgoesto (@erisgoesto) on May 7, 2016 at 11:45pm PDT

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Kazu Sushi, Viva Home Cheras

Update: This restaurant is permanently closed.

It’s already the middle of January. Time sure flies! I met up with Bel and we went to celebrate Jo’s birthday at Viva Home Mall, Cheras: just a simple dinner and drinks. The place is quite dead other than their F&B, but it’s closer to where she stays.

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We went to Kazu Sushi, a Japanese restaurant. The outlet was spacious, with private dining areas where guests have to take their shoes off. The walls were decorated with classic Japanese-style paintings. We opted for the circular wooden booths. There was also a conveyor belt but hardly any sushi on it.

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Prices were higher than average at RM20+ and above. There was sashimi, sushi, temaki, ramen and bento.

I forgot the exact name of the bento I got, but I remember that it cost RM30. The set came served with Japanese white rice, salad in vinaigrette, two pieces of fried ebi (shrimp), fried scallop, breaded oyster and chicken in a teriyaki sauce. The chicken was fried instead of grilled, but it had a ‘dry’ texture, like the meat wasn’t fresh. The tempura wasn’t done well either as it had more flour than filling, and was doughy.

The only saving grace was the chawan mushi that came served with the bento. This was soft and eggy, with generous bits of mushroom and crab meat stick in it. They also served the set with Miso soup and fruits.

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Bel and Jo got another bento, which had chicken gyoza, salad, grilled teriyaki salmon and rice.

Overall, the food quality was meh compared to the price we had to pay. There are probably better Japanese restaurants around Cheras at a cheaper price.

KAZU SUSHI VIVA HOME MALL 

Lot No G03-03A Ground Floor, Viva Home, No 85 Jalan Loke Yew, 55200 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

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It was still early after dinner, so we went to Starbucks. Got raspberry cake and peanutbutter marshmallow chocolate cake for Jo. I haven’t had Starbucks in forever and downing their Caramel Chocolate after a long hiatus from sugary drinks was a little overwhelming.

Bowling Weekend at IOI Mall Puchong

[UPDATE] IOI Mall Puchong’s bowling centre is now closed. 

I haven’t gone bowling for seven years. 

The last time was with a group of high school friends after our graduation, to send Paul off to the States where he would be furthering his studies. So you can imagine how rusty I was!

Carmen randomly called me up one afternoon and asked if I’d like to go bowling with her over the weekend, coz she had to practice for a company tournament. And since there is a bowling alley near my house, I thought why the heck not? Beats being a couch potato.

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We went to Superbowl at IOI Mall Puchong. The place is pretty old – they opened it when the mall was built, so it’s at least 15 years.

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There are about 20 lanes in the alley. Back when I was still in high school, I came here a couple of times and the facilities were well managed. Now, all the screens where you can key in players names are busted.. so you have to do it at the counter. I made the mistake of leaning against one of the monitors and the whole thing came apart.

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We were there around 7pm and the place was deserted. There was a promo going on where guests can buy 3 games and get 1 free (RM24) so we got that. We had to go look for our own shoes, which were in mismatched colours. I doubt they wash the shoes regularly; the stink of feet as we entered the area could have sent most people to high heaven lol.

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The floor where the seats were was uneven, lazily covered over with cardboard and carpet. The seats were littered with garbage (you can buy snacks and chocolates from a nearby concessionaire); even though there was a garbage bin nearby. Sheesh, some people and their non-existent civic consciousness.

The balls were also greasy, like someone just decided to oil all of them.Carmen went around wiping each and everyone that she used with tissues repeatedly.

Somehow that entire paragraph sounded really wrong.

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Game on! Look at how pro Carmen is with her stance lol. I never realised she was left handed because she always used to write with her right in school. Apparently when she was a kid, her parents made her use her right hand (it’s kind of a dumb superstition that using your left hand is bad, imo) so now she’s ambidextrous.

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And then yours truly..

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Straight into the gutter

 

It took me awhile to get the hang of rolling it into the center.

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Yay me lol

Our lane’s sensor malfunctioned – it always failed to detect two of the pins. This meant that even if our ball rolled into the gutter without hitting anything, it always counted as 2. We never got a zero. Idk if that’s a good or bad thing..

I scored a couple of lucky strikes though 🙂

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Halfway through my arm was getting tired lol.

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By 8.30pm, the place was slowly filling up with groups of friends and family enjoying the weekend out.

Which baffles me… if the place is so popular and they’re doing good business, why can’t they spend a little to upgrade the facilities?

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And the winner goes to… 😀

20160109_223530-tile All that rolling had us tired, so we stopped by at Lok Lok Street for some supper.

This place is filthy as sht, but people (I’m guilty too) still flock to it for the food.

The ‘street’ is basically an open air carpark with tables and chairs, where numerous lok lok lorries are parked and where visitors can cook food on skewers in pots of broth, on the spot. It’s definitely not the most hygienic place to eat at lol.

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Pork balls and cheese sausage

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I come here for the fried oyster mushrooms coated in tempura batter and chilli powder. An oily treat once in awhile.

 

Hope you guys had a nice weekend too! 🙂

Fish N Co @1 Utama

Sorry for the long break in blogging, guys! I’ve been so busy with work that I hadn’t had time to sit down and sort through my photos.

Bel and Jo celebrated my birthday two weeks ago with a nice meal and a movie @One Utama Shopping Centre in Damansara. Our dinner was supposed to be at 730pm but I got off my assignment at 4-ish and was here by 5pm.

1U has never been my favourite place to shop because it’s just so massive and the layout branches out all over the place that I find it hard to explore. That, and it’s far from my house.

Stopped by the Rainforest to look at some fish..

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It’s a nice little enclave with greenery and ponds with fat koi fish swimming in it. I sat on a bench nearby to finish some reading.

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Also bought these wooden beads for only RM12 from a small shop selling dreamcatchers, earrings and other crafty stuff.

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The traffic was bad so Bel and Jo only got to the shopping mall at 8pm. We settled for Fish N Co – which was where we had our Christmas gathering a couple of years ago (has it been already?. Serving all things seafood, the restaurant dishes out mixed Western and fusion fare to suit the local taste buds (like sambal fish n chips, chilli crab with rice, etc.). Adopting the concept of ‘seafood in a pan’, it was inspired by fishermen who would often cook fresh catch directly in the pan.

I was starving by then, so I ordered a grilled calamari in lemon butter sauce (RM14.95) for starters. This is one of their signature  appetisers, and did not disappoint. Slightly charred on the outside for that smokey flavour, the squid was sliced into easy-to-eat yet generous chunks and was fresh and springy. The lemon butter sauce was tangy and creamy without being overpowering: perfect to whet the appetite before digging into heavier mains. Good for sharing, and if you’re a small eater, order a side of fries/rice for a meal on its own.

Highly recommended!

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My main meal was New York Fish n Chips (RM21.95), a generous portion of battered fish stuffed with parmesan cheese, served with cool mayo dip and thick cut fries. The batter is well done, crispy on the outside while the meat is moist and juicy on the inside. Be careful when it’s served so as not to burn your tongue! The cheese on the lends it a smooth, creamy taste. I like this the best compared to the other FnC options, like Arctic, Swiss, Italian, Afrika, Sawadee: all with  their own toppings and flavours, so to each their own. 🙂

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Bel had the healthier non-fried option, Baked White Fish with Mozza Cheese (RM22.95), which was covered in a generous amount of melted mozzarella cheese and served with mixed vegetables and a bed of mashed potato.

Fish N Co have branches in many shopping malls, and like many franchises, some places are better than others. I recommend the one in 1U and Paradigm Mall, Kelana Jaya (but some people have had less than pleasant experience with the food here, so..) but it really boils down to personal preference.

Fish N Co 1 Utama

LG 350, Lower Ground Floor,
Lebuh Bandar Utama,
Selangor Darul Ehsan.
Tel: + 6 03 7722 4928

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They got me accessories from Lovisa as presents 🙂 Thank you, guys! I especially like the stone earrings 🙂

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2014 in Pictures

Hi guys! How was your New Year’s? Mine was a quiet affair at home. I was working during the day and got back late, so I really didn’t have any energy to go partying afterwards.

Since I did a ‘review’ of sorts for 2013, I thought I’d do one for 2014 as well. Personally, it has been a very eventful year and I got to go to a lot of places – of which I am very grateful for. Here’s to another awesome year ahead!

JANUARY

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  • Went white-water rafting for the first time.
  • Ferried to the jungle campsite in lorries in the middle of the night like cattle.
  • Scary, exhilirating and exciting all at once.
  • Fell into the river two minutes into the ride.
  • Dangerous, but fun – like a two hour long ride where you can’t get off and might lose your legs and a life in the process. yeah.

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  • Went to Bali with the fam.
  • Dug toes into the beautiful beaches of Uluwatu with its turqoise blue waters.
  • Visited the sacred temples of Tirta Empul and touched the holy spring waters for good luck.
  • Drove up to the high, cold peaks of Kintamani and had lunch while looking at the badass crater-lake.
  • Enjoyed exploring the rich culture and history this Hindu island had to offer.

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FEBRUARY

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  • Agonisingly long trip back to parents hometown in Ipoh to visit relatives for Chinese New Year
  • Played tourist and went to Taman Rekreasi Gunung Lang
  • Visited the Ipoh railway station for pix and stuff.

MARCH

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  • Met up with my Saudi Arabian friend Sinan for the first time.
  • Took him sightseeing around Putrajaya. 

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  • Country experiences tragedy with MH370’s disappearance.
  • Helped with coverage, interviewed international journalists on their experience here.

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  • Went to my first F1 race with Simon. Got sunburnt in the process.

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  • Tried North Indian cuisine for the first time.
  • It was pretty awesome.

APRIL 

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  • Saw a real-life Tibetan Mastiff for the first time.
  • Fluffeh as hellz

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  • Traveled to Cameron Highlands for another family trip.
  • Enjoyed the cool air, tea leaf plantations, beautiful butterflies and pretty flowers up in the hills.

MAY 

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  • Went for my first Red Bull Air Race. 

JUNE

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  • Visited the zoo again after more than 10 years. 

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  • Took lots of hipster shots at the annual Floria Putrajaya – the city’s flower and garden festival.

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  • Went on my first press junket to Vietnam – to Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. 
  • First class treatment with business class flights and five star hotels.
  • Marveled at the beautiful, tranquil river waters of Tam Coc, which is like Halong Bay but less commercial-y.
  • Got to know more of the country’s history at places like Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum and the Reunification Palace.
  • Nearly died crossing the roads at Hanoi’s Old Quarters coz their traffic is cray

JULY

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  • Made coffee at DIB – the first cafe in Malaysia which is run by the deaf and mute community.
  • Mourned another tragedy – MH17 was shot down while flying over Ukraine and Russia.

AUGUST

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  • Best month of my life.
  • Boyfriend flew all the way from San Francisco to visit me in Malaysia for two weeks.
  • Words are inadequate to describe how happy I am to have this amazing person in my life, and I can’t wait to spend the rest of it with him
  • Spent most of our time together walking the streets of Penang and KL.
  • Took him to Penang Hill, the beaches of Batu Feringghi, the Clan Jetties and exploring the culture-rich streets of Georgetown.
  • Parents let him stay over in our house. APPROVAL STAMPED.

SEPTEMBER

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  • Got to interview graffiti artists that I respect and admire on their street art project in KL.

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  • Fed goats on a farm in Johor.
  • Won an Ipad Mini at a lucky draw. Achievement unlocked, because I’ve never won anything in lucky draws.

OCTOBER

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  • Grandma’s 88th birthday.

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  • Met up with my Indonesian friend Liv and played tour guide around KL.

NOVEMBER

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  • Joined and completed a marathon for the first time.
  • In Penang again.
  • It was 7km, but still counts, right?

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  • Invited to another press junket at I-City.
  • Went with mum for a free night’s stay at their newly opened hotel.
  • Visited the wax museum, trick art museum and various other attractions.

DECEMBER

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  • Aunt and Uncle’s 35th wedding anniversary.
  • Got my US VISA. Planning to travel to LA to visit the boyfriend (and Jeppeh) in April 2015.

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  • Christmas meet-up with the UK gang.

Can’t say it hasn’t been an awesome year. I’m thankful for everything.

Anyway, I’m turning a quarter of a century this year. That’s more than 30% of my life lived. @-@ Have I done anything worthy of being remembered? I don’t know. Maybe I should do more this year.

How was your 2014?

 

 

Christmas Meetup with the Midnight Gang

SO I met up with the Midnight Gang on Boxing Day. 

Nah, we’re not some Asian mafia…. it’s just a nickname the four of us came up with as students in the UK, because we used to hangout way past midnight in our apartment to gossip, make pancakes and have fattening suppers of fish n chips and garlic mayo ‘dabao-ed‘ from the nearby kebab shops. It’s been two years since our last gathering  – I mean, I’ve seen Mabel around since she works with a company that my newspaper deals with a lot, but I haven’t seen Jo and Eenoch for a long time. Since the latter was in KL for a couple of days, we decided to have a quick meetup session at The Curve.

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Catching up on how everyone was doing… and then it was time to exchange presents!  I was really touched that they got me things that I actually liked.. (the forever dilemma of buying presents for someone is wondering if they’ll like it or not. I usually just ask them what they want). I guess they weren’t my classmates for four years for nothing.

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Bel, me, Eenoch and Jo. We talked about the good ol’ student days.. it wasn’t that long ago, but in between working and just living life, it seemed like years. We’re all a little older and wiser, but I think deep down inside, we’re still the same. And that’s a good thing!

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Handmade heart card from Mabel.

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A notebook with custom stamps from Jo, bag, and a cutesy owl mug from Typo from Eenoch.

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Mabel gave me and Jo an accessory set with these lovely earrings! Altho the piercing on my left ear has closed.

 

Merry Christmas, guys!

Housewarming Party BBQ

Hi! I haven’t been updating as often as I want to, so here’s a short post.

Went to visit C’s new house at Koi Kinrara, Puchong. She bought a second-hand apartment there for RM400k.. I wonder when I will have the money to buy a house. Probably never.. with what I’m earning. 😀

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The place is rather far in and the road there is double parked with lots of vehicles, coz there’s a badminton court nearby. Very clean, nice environment, windy (coz its on a hilly area), nicely kept lawns and fairly new buildings. There’s also a gym and a swimming pool. We had the BBQ next to it, where residents can rent the pit for a fee.

It’s really hard for my generation to own a home these days. Unless you’re in a lucrative career (like C, she’s a very good salesperson. Her end of year bonus  = my annual income).

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Apparently she’s really good at barbecuing stuff as well. The chicken wings were well marinated and grilled to tender, honeyed perfection. We also had pizza and sandwiches sam_0086-tile

Would like to swim in a pool at night :3

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Yep. Just a short post to keep you guys updated.

On another note, the MH370 flight is still missing. The rumour mill is having a field day. Hoping to get some real news soon.

Christmas Eve 2013

I don’t celebrate Christmas, but it’s hard not to get sucked into the holiday mood when everyone else is taking days off and there is a general atmosphere of cheer in the air. Some time last year I was spending Christmas eve with my college friends. This year, I went out with some friends from high school instead. It’s amazing but I just realised we’ve all known each other for TEN years. That’s a friggin’ decade, and it’s not easy to keep in touch after such a long time.

And I feel old lol.

There was myself, Carmen, Simon and Celine. We went to SetiaWalk Puchong, which is one of my favourite hangout spots since it has lots of chic cafes and bars. The bars were packed to the brim even as early as 10pm. We had a hard time finding a spot to chill, so we ended up at a coffee house instead. I’ve been here with Celine and Grace before, the drinks are good and there are board games to play. To pass the time, we played Trick Scrabble. It’s been such a long time since I touched a Scrabble board. I miss it. Funnily enough, I still remember how many tiles each alphabet has. I used to play for my district and nearly made it to national level, so I won’t say I’m too shabby. I’m kind of rusty though.

Picture taken at Fullhaos before we proceeded to Caffeine, coz Celine was having dinner here before we met up.

Ice-blended chocolate and ice-blended vanilla. I had the right one. It was good! Not too sweet, with a strong vanilla taste (you know how some places serve iceblended vanilla that tastes like milk. bleh) and a smooth, creamy texture without too much ice.

Refusing to give up because I had a seven letter word (which would earn the player additional 50 points!) but didn’t have anywhere I could put it lol.

At the stroke of midnight the cheers and the poppers went off as we ushered in Christmas. IMO, Christmas has lost it’s meaning among youths though. Most people just find it as an excuse to party and drink til they’re hungover the next day lol.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!