Lucky Bo: Totally-Worth-It Cholesterol-ville

I zip my maroon dress- spoil from the boutique’s discount rack. With an afterthought, I line my sepek-eyes with a touch of pencil eye-liner; and my lips, a splash of lipstick. Our pal considers the place “atas”, so err on the side of caution, or risk looking like the jakuns we are. Make a reservation, he says. So I did.

The nice lady on the line is thorough. Clearly she does this a lot. We will only hold the table for 15 minutes, she informs me.

So we make every effort to arrive at exactly 7pm, our reservation time. A row of classy looking shop lots greet us. Parking is easy- rich people don’t drive?

Photo credit: www.walauwei.com

Christmas music plays in the background of Lucky Bo. I take a moment to admire a Christmas tree and its ornaments.

We are led to a table near the back of the restaurant.

Cutlery is arranged on the table according to, er, sequence of utility?

Raised in a middle-class family that refused to pay 50 sens for pisang goreng, I felt like a deer in a kampung– completely out of place and every bit inadequate.

My insecurities kicks up a rung when a couple of tai-tais make their way to a neighbouring table, shopping bags in the hands of… their driver. I’m considerably perceptive, so a chauffeur of the rich upper-class is discernible.

But, alas, the nice waitress in denim is waiting for our order, so it’s time to sham confidence.

This, this, this, this… We randomly point at items on the menu. Thank God I reserved the Tomahawk steak via phone. “The 1.2-1.3 kg, Marble 3, Tomahawk Steak,” she said.

“Okay,” I replied, as if I consume numerically rated grub everyday. The truth is, only time my meal had a number in it was the McDonald’s 6 chicken nugget set.

They serve us sky juice- “warm, room-temperature, or iced, ma’am?”- for free! On an unrelated note, I once launched a spirited campaign of boycott-eateries-that-charge-for-plain-water.

But that was 21 years old air-conditioned-restaurants-are-a-ruse Chow Ping. Today, I am 27 years old Marble-3-Tomahawk-Steak Chow Ping.

The complimentary bread, drinks, and appetisers came. We chomp them down.

Bread, duh. Because I eat at places that serve you complimentary baked goods with vinegar all the time. Not.
Tuaktail. I sanction this drink.
Mushroom soup. Each spoonful cost, like, RM1.
Grilled cheesy portobello mushroom

But all that pale in light of the evening’s main star- our medium 1.2-1.3 kg, Marble 3 Tomahawk steak.

1.2-1.3 kg, Marble 3 Tomahawk steak

The steak is served- sizzling, alluring, and sitting on the serving block like Zeus on his Olympian throne. It might be the trance, but I promise you the air around it fizzled, like the surrounding oxygen is ad hoc to the existence of that slab of royalty.

So we let our Gen-Y instincts take the reigns, and instantly whip out our phones to capture this moment that will survive for lifetimes to come. The waitress waits patiently as we feed our cameras. Later, Broady remarked that the wait staff probably have personal records: longest camera-induced waiting time.

After what she probably deem as ages, we let her slice the steak up into pieces. The smallest, fat laden piece, she takes with her to spin up a plate of scrumptious Char Kuey Teow (of which, I grade 9.99 out of 10!).

But let us not get distracted from the star of the moment. I sliced my steak- fork in my right hand, knife in the left, because, who cares?

I bite. I wait. I taste. I sigh.

Savoury juice fills my mouth, indulging every taste bud, teasing every sensory nerve.

Are those… angels singing?

The fat- it melts!

Did somebody just compact heaven and put it in my mouth?

I redefine taste-gasm.

Tomahawk steak again
Char kuey teow. Cooked from the oil of our 1.2-1.3kg, Marble 3 Tomahawk steak. (that’s starting to roll off my tongue)

Life- never the same again.

All that cholesterol and the 600 bucks bill? Totally. Worth. It.*

*21 years old air-conditioned-restaurants-are-a-ruse Chow Ping might beg to differ though.

Bukit Kutu: 6 Valuable Lessons on Hydration, Lactic Acid and Giant Centipedes

1) H2o is the way of life (and hike). If in doubt, bring more

Up to 60% of a human body is water, but my fluid composition is rapidly decreasing. My sweat ducts ooze urea like a water hose on a perfectly manicured lawn. The compromised water level makes me pant like a deer for a river, and I stagger along like an injured version of said deer.

I exhausted my 500ml water bottle, and I long for a wishing well so I can (1) wish for water (2) drink the wishing water.

Remember to BMW: Bring More Water.

2) Is this the “big rock”?

Bloggers relay that the “big rock” is the trail’s rough midpoint. This information had us wondering “is this the big rock” upon every stone and pebble that came our way.

Breaking news: If you have to ask, IT IS NOT THE BIG ROCK.

Because when the huge ass boulder materialise before your eyes like angels in the nativity story, YOU WILL KNOW.

3) all routes lead to rome, but not all lead to bukit kutu

If you see a junction, stop and stare… I think I’m moving but I go nowhere…

I thank God for bloggers. Without them, we might be stranded in a virgin jungle right now, eating leaves and drinking our pee for survival.

Maybe not, but we’ll be very very lost, because not every route lead to Bukit Kutu.

Special thanks to blogger Grace Abundant, whose detailed directions and accompanying pictures are the reason we live and breathe (we followed it like Captain Jack Sparrow’s compass).

4) sikit-sikit, lama-lama mendaki bukit: every step brings you closer to the peak

Persevere.

2 hours 45 mins of churning the lactic acid mill uphill. We step climbed tree roots, traverse mud cakes, and scaled sandy slopes…

5) beware of creepy-crawlies

… and the effort lands me 3 leeches sucking on till kingdom come.

Red ants the size of my finger nail march everywhere like it’s the middle of a business day in Kuala Lumpur.

Not to mention the humongous centipede (see pic above!) just sitting there minding its own business, giving me the creeps, but not enough to pass of the photo opportunity. It’s length exceeds that of my size 6 feet! (My aunt calls me “da jiao po”(big foot lady)

6) the view is worth the climb

All the sweat, tears and blood (no thank you, leeches) bleed (no pun intended) together to reward my resolution: a stunning view of nature’s perfection. Distant hills stand proud, circling the irregularity of a water dam. Stratus clouds spot the blue sky, made better only by our front row seats.

Heck, I love Bukit Kutu.

Aquria KLCC: Breathe Under Water

Photo credit: www.facebook.com/AquariaKLCC

If you fancy the underwater world, love “Finding Memo”, or simply looking to kill some time, Aquaria KLCC is perfect for you.

Do purchase a ticket online (refer to “Useful Link”). Alternatively, buy yours over the counter. If you have a MyKad (Malaysian ID), present it for a discount.

The adventure begins

After scanning our tickets at the entrance, we stepped into a world of blue, blue and bluer. To our left, bloodthirsty piranhas hover with death in their eyes… or so I expected. Instead, what awaits could pass as a Valentine’s Day plushy. Pfft… Can’t say I’m not disappointed.

Selfie with the men- eaters.

To our right, sits the gene pool. Here, visitors are welcomed to molest interact with our friendly underwater pals.

The Horseshoe Crabs getting, um, affectionate.
The Brown Banded Bamboo Shark.
My buddy and a starfish.

The saga unfolds. A variety of water creatures meet us with flailing gills and (in the case of a slothful green snake) hissing stares.

“I found dinner”, says the hubby.
One little, two little, three little fishes…
A lion and a fish walked into a bar. 9 months later, a lionfish!
The third wheel on their date.
This is the Green Arrow of the underwater world. It can shoot an accurate jet of water up to 2 metres away.
Jelly in the tank, jelly in the tank, willy- water, willy- water… 

under the sea

We arrive at a conveyor belt that glides us under an arced aquarium to create an underwater illusion. Sea corals plaster the “seabed” in an array of colors while fishes dance around singing “under the sea” (silently).

Photo credit: www.kuala-lumpur.ws
Oh grandma, what big teeth you have.
Smile!

the feeding

The area is relatively small. In under 5 minutes, we retraced our steps from exit to entrance for the otter feeding. Speaking of otters and mealtime, boy, did they work hard for their meal.

Can I keep one, please?

They twist, turn, fetched balls and high-five the audience through the solid glass. Kind of like the scene in Supergirl when Kara and Alex reciprocate a tearful “palm reunion” through the thick window of a spaceship hurling into space and impending doom. And then I straightened upon the otters’ final trick, because the trainer is holding shrimps, and I love shrimps.

Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who’s the cutest of them all?

Satisfied, we exit Aquaria KLCC, and I have one thought on my mind:  My home boy HAS to propose to his girlfriend here (click on link to find out how!).

How to get there

Click here

Additional information

Don’t miss feeding time! Click here to check out the feeding schedule.

Also, “cage rage” is all the rage. Click here to find out more.

Useful Link

http://aquariaklcc.com

Nasi Lemak Worth the Wait?

“1 hour! I’ve been waiting for 1 hour!”

People are starting to stare. I’m staring.

The lady boss’ attempts to calm the agitated customer proved futile. Oh, he’s flailing his arms.

1 hour earlier…

My husband and I arrived to the hustle- bustle of the famous Village Park Nasi Lemak. Extra tables line the sidewalk, each one occupied. I counted 20 people waiting in line at the cashier. The atmosphere resembled a morning market: people talking to people, and people talking over people. Judging by the number of ang mohs (westerners) seated at various tables, this restaurant’s reputation precedes itself.

After waiting in line for about 5 minutes, we are led to a corner table for two. A polite and no- nonsense Myanmar waiter in a cap greeted us. We quickly ordered the acclaimed nasi lemak with ayam goreng (fried chicken). Then, we added chee cheong fun (rice noodle roll) as a side. Thus began the tiresome task of waiting.

15 minutes and a short debate about the ethical repercussions from Harambe the Gorilla’s incident later, the drinks arrived.

We sip on our barley and Teh-O for another solid 15 minutes before the food was served.

I took a mouth full of rice. It was fragrant, the santan (coconut milk) taste present yet not overwhelming; slightly moist, texture favourable. The sambal (hot sauce) was a perfect balance of sweet, spicy and savory. The perfectly salted ikan bilis (anchovy) and crunchy peanuts complete the trio. Cucumbers aligned the edge of the plate.

The ayam goreng was hot, which might explain but does not excuse the 30 minutes wait. A bite of chicken proved pleasant to the taste buds. But the pleasure ends there. The meat put my teeth to work extra hard. Based on the sardine- fish- in- can feel one gets from this restaurant, the turnover rate of chicken should be pretty high. However, excuse me when I say that the chicken might have died a solid year before actual consumption. But I realized this might be an isolated case, since nobody else has aired similar concerns.

The chee cheong fun spotted semi thick sweet brown sauce, of which I smeared all over my rice rolls. The slightly spicy sambal gave the chee cheong fun the right boost. I let the blend of plain carbohydrates, sweet and spicy settle in my mouth, savoring the enjoyable flavour.

The growing line of customers pressured us to vacate our seats. We headed for the cashier…

…Where we were met by the raised voice of the unsatisfied customer. He has been waiting for an hour, he says. I pitch in about our waiting time, although 30 minutes is pale in comparison. The customer behind joins in. I make a few passing remarks about the management style. I mean, they don’t cook the Nasi Lemak plate by plate, do they? The rice is steamed batch by batch in rice cookers large enough to bath a 2 months old baby. The sambal, cucumbers, ikan bilis and peanuts are pre-prepped. The crowd is no stranger, so the waiting time suggests a lack of planning and poor management.

Then the guy next in line delivers the million-dollar verdict, “if you think the food is worth the wait, then wait”.

My husband and I exchange looks.

I shrug.

We’ll wait.