Thursday, 26 February 2015

Sweet Indulgence At Manhattan Fish Market

Three desserts we got to enjoy FOC over lunch earlier today at Manhattan Fish Market, because a new staff there somehow managed to accidentally drop seven glasses of sweet drinks over a friend at our table.

No, we didn't scream at the staff. No point anyway. After all, the staff did apologise.

No need to be such a hag over accidents unless nobody apologise. My friend got a tad wet and sticky but not drenched, luckily. 

And getting the sizzling brownie with ice cream (a must try), icy hot fish bananas (it look better on the menu than in real life) and sizzling banana fritters with ice cream was nice.

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Nuang In Loops For Saturday

After doing the Blackwater (Ayer Hitam) trail in Puchong on Friday, hubby and I spent part of last week's Saturday (the next day) at Nuang.

We didn't aim to summit Nuang this time but rather tried to do the Renjer-Balak Trail loop. Just 2 loops though. A loop of 5K ascent and 5K descent.
The elevation map for the two loops.

Hubby did tell me to continue alone if I wanted to do a third loop and although I didn't plan to complete the third loop, I did actually wanted to get a 21K mileage that day.

Turned out we were short of a few km and while I wanted to continue while hubby rested, hubby told me later to accept whatever mileage we got and stop. Dang! Hahaha

It's actually funny that I suffered going up but then still wanted to continue just so I get my mileage in. Funny but pretty normal for most runner friends I know. Adoi. Hahaha
Photo credit : Kahwai
We bumped into quite a number of familiar faces that day.

And plenty of friendly faces too, despite being strangers. ^^
Photo credit : Kahwai
Still can jump, halfway up during the 2nd loop!

This time, we spent about 4 and a half hours at Nuang. I've already promised son we'd be back by 3.00pm and a promise must be kept.

Anyways, we'll be back at Nuang this Sunday.
For this.

Nuang Ultra. A 12-hour run at Gunung Nuang.

Me, as a participant.

Hubby as a supporter.

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Blackwater Trail On A Friday

Last week, at the very last minute, we ditched our plan to travel back to my hometown in Raub for the Chinese New Year weekend and chose to stay home I instead.

We didn't plan for anything special during the 4-days long CNY weekend, other than spending time with each other. And oh, a little bit of training, of course. ^^

On Friday, Hubby and I went to a trail which I haven't visited before in Puchong. Hubby is familiar with the Ayer Hitam trail (or fondly called Blackwater)  in Puchong as he had trained there on weekend nights with his buddies during the puasa month but it was my first time to visit it.
The start of the trail.

A popular landmark amongst his gang is a shop named Tomato across the street.
The trail is located beside a housing development.

So nice lah for the people in the neighbourhood to have such a lovely trail right at their backyard.
The start of the trail didn't look too promising but once we got to the wooded area, it sure  was interesting not to mention kinda challenging.

But then again, if I say it was challenging... maybe it wasn't for others. Quite a number of kids tagging along with their parents (a lady brought three little girls through the trail) and enjoyed the trail too.
I have to say, the trail is very clean. Good job to those who took care of the trail and also for the trail users who refrained from littering there.
From this sign, one can either can to the left or right to complete a 3K loop of the trail.

Hubby hid his 1.5ltr mineral water bottle here and we replenished our smaller bottle each time we completed a loop.

We did three loops on Friday, tackling both side of the loop; climbing from both left and right so we kinda get a balanced workout that day. For me personally, I feel that starting from the right side was more challenging than from the left side.
The hilly trail was a mixture of clear path like this and more technical paths that we had to climb up. I sure had a good workout that day.
Me and my pink Adidas Kanadia shoes.

The Kanadia was a good choice for this route. I like the grip on red earth/clay surfaces but it's not so good for trails with stones, especially wet ones. Crossing a river with Kanadia has never been fun for me.

It took us 3 hours of hiking to complete 3 3K loops and although it would be nice to do a 4th loop, we didn't have much time for that. It was Friday and by the time we finished the 3rd loop, it was already 11.42am. Time to go back!
The elevation map.

Three peaks, for the three loops done. ^^ 
Later, we had a quick briyani lunch that day because at the Mamak, Friday is briyani day. Opted to eat the briyani with black pepper crab.

All this, for a mere RM6.50. bargain, I tell you. ^^

Monday, 23 February 2015

A Night At Pullman Hotel, Putrajaya

If you remember, hubby and I decided to kaypoh-kaypoh at a 48-hours run on Feb 13 - 15, 2015 and we also tried to run in those three days. (The post here).

Son stayed at his grandfather's house on Friday night as he needed to go to school on Saturday morning for his school's cross country run but later that Saturday, we checked-in to Pullman Hotel in Putrajaya.

The reason was simple : we wanted him to be close by when we go out for our night run(s) on Saturday night and also on Sunday morning.

Pullman Hotel was fully booked that Saturday, what with Valentine's Day celebration and also a TKC Carnival and Run which was held that weekend at the Maritime Centre next to the hotel.

We actually booked the "Explore Malaysia" package that included a superior room with breakfast and also F&B or Spa voucher for RM305.28 (inclusive tax) but got upgraded to a one bedroom apartment.

While it was nice to get a big room, the handling of guests at the reception counter was a bit wanting.

I mean, I've never before just given my room key without even a briefing about what my room entitles me for.

I had assumed the staff who showed us to the lift would brief us, but when I asked her about breakfast and our F&B voucher, she informed me that she had no idea.

Imagine, I had to go out from the lift and queue again at the reception!!! Grrr...

And I guess when we were there, Pullman just happen to have almost all the staff freshly employed. We asked a staff who was at the first floor the direction of our room, and while she was helpful, she told us she had no idea about the layout of that particular floor. Another grrr...
Good thing our room was nice and very spacious.
One bedroom apartment with king bed.
And a rollaway bed in the living room.
And an extra set of toiletries for the third guest.
A nice pantry but the coffee machine was faulty.

Nope, didn't bother to complain about it.

We checked-in around 3pm, and rested in our room for a few hours; after all, both hubby and I hadn't had a sleep since the night before as we spent the night from 9pm - 6.00am running and then headed straight to pick up Son for his cross country run.

Later in the evening we went out to utilise our F&B voucher (RM50 rebate for a minimum RM100 spent at their F&B outlet) but the coffee house was full.

We later checked with the staff manning the reception counter whether we can utilise the voucher at the lounge and was told that it was OK.
Just a light dinner for us.
Because Hubby and I planned to run that night.
My dinner was an open face smoked salmon sandwich. Yumms.
And we finished off with this green tea cake.

It was nice and relaxing to linger at the lounge, that hubby and I kinda started late for our run.

Thumbs up to the lone staff manning the lounge. Helpful and friendly.

We only went up to our room to change after 9.30pm and after making sure Son was comfy and happy; we went out to start our run at 10.30pm!

We got back after 3.00am and was up again at 7.00am. Wouldn't want to miss breakfast! Hahaha

Anyways, our package included 2 breakfasts for adults and a free breakfast for a child under 12, but we were told by the coffee house staff that we needed to pay for our son. So damn irritating lah... Gotta keep reminding staff to check what our package entitled us to. Triple grrr...

Later, we checked-out early at 10.00am as we wanted to do another run; and support friends who were still running in the 48-hours run.

We were told that the rebate wasn't applicable for bills from the lounge when I queried about why there was no rebate for our dinner bill in the total bill. Quadruple grrrr....

Seems like the staff in question also don't know what and how the F&B rebate voucher work. Another more senior staff had to come and "showed" her how to deduct the RM50.00 off our total bill.

For such a nice, posh hotel; seems like Pullman lacks big time in staff training that weekend.

What happened?

They employed part-timers that weekend due to the glut of guests checking in, kah?

Nobody seems to know anything!

Good thing we got upgraded earlier, otherwise I probably had thrown a bigger tantrum that day.  And good thing I was more focused on running than the lack of knowledge from Pullman staff. HAHAHAHA

We were thinking of booking a night stay when I run in Putrajaya Night Marathon in October but maybe I should reconsider and book Everly Hotel instead. Hur hur hur.

Been a long time since I last grouched about a hotel, right? 

Sunday, 22 February 2015

The Dependable Mamak

When one spends much of the morning outside, training and only return home well after lunch, the Mamak is the place to look for food, especially during long holiday season just like we had last week, during the CNY weekend.

Days of trail running after breakfast with Son, we only return after 2 or 3pm and we sure as hell didn't want to think about cooking lunch!

Thank goodness the Mamak joint opens 24 hours/day and 364 days a year. (Our Mamak had a day off for Raya. Hahaha)

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Happy Chinese New Year!

May wealth always come your way.

May it be auspicious and as you wish.

May your year be as bright as the sun that fills your life with infinite success.

May the Year of the Goat brings with it the fortune and good health for you and your family members.

And may all your dreams come true in the Chinese New Year of the Goat.
Image from Tratles.net

Monday, 16 February 2015

40-20-10 On A Single Weekend

In my previous post, I wrote about a 48-hours run called Patriot 200.

While both Zaini and I were not participants of the run (it is still way out of our league), we did however went to give support to the 15 runners last weekend and did our own long runs too.

We both planned to do a bit of running, following our own route but somehow ended up following exactly the Patriot 200 route. A 20K loop around the Core Island of Putrajaya.
This route. This was what we did on Friday night. Two loops around the core island before rushing home to pick up son and send him to his school for his cross country run. ^^

FRIDAY, 13/2/2015
The Patriot 200 was flagged off at 9.00pm on Friday night, so Hubby and I went straight to Putrajaya after having dinner with Son in Bangsar. With Son safely stashed at his grandpa's house, we braved the traffic jam and arrived Taman Seri Empangan minutes before 9.00pm.
Photo credit : PACat Adventure Team
Still clad in office wear, no time to change or shower yet. Hahaha

Keypoh-keypoh a bit and after most of the runners were flagged off (some were still stuck in traffic jam), we went to shower at Taman Seri Empangan's toilet to freshen up and change into our running gear.
It was drizzling a bit so I put on my new running jacket. I only wore it for a run twice, and it was in Japan. ^^

Anyway, it didn't rain long but because the night was windy, I decided to keep the jacket on all through the first loop.

We saw participants on the opposite side of the road as we head off to Masjid Pink. Hollered and clapped for them but I guess most of them were too focused and didn't hear us. Hahaha
The first 10K was easy as it was just a straight run along the road from Taman Seri Empangan all the way to the roundabout past Jambatan Putra and towards Masjid Pink.

While the straight Empangan-PoJ-Masjid Pink route was filled with people enjoying the night out, the lakeside route was a bit quieter and at certain stretches, a bit dark but all in all, a pretty nice route.

We maintained a walking pace of around 10-11min/km for the first 15K before starting a 2-1 run/walk routine. 2K run and 1K walk.

Finished the first loop, lepaked a bit at Team Pacat's support station, talked, eat, drink, before setting off to do our second loop.

This time, we pushed a bit as we were trying to finish the second loop before 5.30am.

Actually, we made it back at 5.15am and we packed up, bid goodbye to the guys manning the support station and drove back to Bangsar.

SATURDAY, 14/2/2015
Arrived FIL's house at 6.00am, showered and drove Son to school for his cross country event.

While waiting for him to finish, both Hubby and I took short naps in the car about 20-30mins a few times, while waiting for the event to finish at around 11.30am.

Did a bit of shopping at TMC before heading home to pick up our stuff.

We were still heading back to Putrajaya on Saturday!
For this.

We had booked a room for Son to stay at Pullman Hotel, while both of us go out for another run that night. ^^

But because the room was so nice and comfy and all that, we started our run rather late than planned.
At 10.32pm to be exact.

Having just a few hours of sleep took a toll on me as I started to feel really sleepy barely 2K into our run.

It was hard to concentrate and tried to keep up pace with hubby and not doze off, I only managed something like a 15min/km walking pace.

It was a struggle to complete one loop and I told hubby I'd better sleep for a couple of hours and continue later.

So it was 3am when we got back to the support station for a rest and a chat before walking back to Pullman Hotel.

But alas, I still found it hard to wake up when the alarm went off at 6.30am. Hahaha

SUNDAY, 15/2/2015
I couldn't even coax myself to wake up to go support friends who joined the TKC Walk/Run event which was held just next to our hotel. Sorry peeps.

Anyway, finally drag my butt out of our hotel room for breakfast at 8.00am and we later checked-out at 10.00am.

Instead of heading home, we were back to the Patriot 200 support station.

Left Son to lepak there, and we set off again for a bit more mileage for the weekend.
Not a lot though.

We decided to tag along a fellow runner who was doing his final 10K, to complete his 100K run.
Congrats Bro Zg for your 100K!

Anyway, I was still a bit dissatisfied with my 70K total mileage so later in the evening, I head out again.

But this time, Zaini didn't join me.
One final 10K.

I did wish to add at least another 10K but I decided not to. After all, if I continued, it'll probably be around 8.00pm when I finished and I won't get to spend much time with Son.

Plus it was already getting hard to stomach another loop after what we've done over the weekend.

So for last weekend, Hubby did 70K and I did 80K.

We managed to get the mileage because we sort of "tumpang" the spirit of those doing Patriot 200.

Doing this alone would be so much harder.

So thank you Patriot 200 participants and organiser for allowing us to sort of mooch off your event last week.

I hope we get another opportunity to do this. It does get kinda addictive, you know? Hihihi

Sunday, 15 February 2015

Patriot 200. For Runners With Guts, In The Spirit of Leftenan Adnan

There was a Saltfish series held last weekend (which is a series of long runs organised by the PACat Team) called Patriot 200.
Held from 9.00pm on Feb 13, 2015 to 9.00pm Feb 15, 2015, it was a 48-hours long run event and done in memory and respect for our hero, Leftenan Adnan Saidi who perished while defending our country on Feb 14, 1942 against the Japanese Occupation.

15 participants toed the starting line and most, if not all came direct from work on Friday night for the run. A few came from out of town, as far as from Terengganu! Talk about passion!

For Hubby and I, we went straight to Taman Seri Empangan in Putrajaya where the starting line of the run straight after work not as participants but as a show of support to other runners.
Participants listening to briefing before the start of the run.

The aim of the run was to allow participating runners to plan their run and complete whatever distance that they target or managed to do within 48-hours. Of course, a finisher is someone who managed to run 200K in 48 hours.

A few clocked 100K, a few more than 100K and the highest mileage done was 160K.

As mentioned in Patriot 200 FB page, it was a 100% DNF (did not finish) status. But by no means the distance that these runners did is anything to be scoffed at. You go trylah run 100K and tell me how "easy" it is for you.

To everyone involved, much respect to you.

Runners.
Organiser.
Supporters.
You are all an inspiration.

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Instagram Your Photos For A Good Cause

A good cause by the Gardens Mall, don't you think?

Take our photos under the wisteria and post it on instagram with hashtags #tgmcam, #tgmcny, #tgmgivesback and the mall will make donations to flood victims.

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Terbelah Bintang Subaru, By Leyla Shuri

I've known for some time that an online friend who is now residing in Okinawa Japan has come out with a novel titled "Terbelah Bintang Subaru". She has a blog too (click here for the link)

Yes, it's a Malay novel. (Don't need to tell me you don't understand or read Malay books in the comment section, as I am not encouraging you to neither read or buy it, my lovely readers). ^^

I saw someone posted about the book a few days ago and I suddenly thought, maybe I'd just check whether they are now available at MPH as it wasn't before.

So yesterday after dinner, Son and I went to MPH and voila! The book is now stocked at MPH Mid Valley. Only 3 left and after I bought one, only two left at the shelf.

If any Malay book fan is looking for this book, head to the ITBM (Institut Terjemahan & Buku Malaysia) shelf instead of the novel section of the bookshop.
Her first novel on the right, titled "Pulut Sakura Serunding Kasih" and her latest novel on the left. It's a thick book, so I guess I have something to read over the upcoming long CNY weekend. ^^
 
Actually I am missing one of her books here. I still don't have her second novel titled "Pagi Semerah Daun Momiji" yet.
 
By the way, the book retails at RM45.00.


Monday, 9 February 2015

Our Little Backyard Hill

It's been ages since I did a post about going up the hill that is right in our backyard. Well actually, it's right in front of our doorstep since we can immediately head up to the hill upon exiting the gate of our apartment.
 
The small, steep hill is quite popular with visitors especially on weekdays and there will be hordes of health enthusiasts who heads up before dawn! In the evening, it a spot for youngsters (local and foreign) to lepak around.
 
There is even a recreational club (Persatuan Rekreasi) with this hill's name!

 
We rarely go up this hill nowadays and decided to do so last weekend instead of driving out to Putrajaya.
A mixture of tarmac, trail and even stairs, it sure has plenty for anyone who wants to start working out here.
 
And for us, an hour spent, together. ^^

Thursday, 5 February 2015

Sukiya After Hours Of Window Shopping

Over the long weekend, my family spared a few hours to spend it indoors; in an air-conditioned mall instead of sweating outdoors for a change. ^^

Well, I wanted to get a new pair of spectacles and a shop in Paradigm Mall came highly recommended by friends so after our morning to noon walk in a park in Putrajaya; we got home, showered, ate lunch and head out to Paradigm Mall.

Anyways, after spending more than an hour over at the optical shop and then browsing around the mall, it was time for dinner.

It's been a while since we last eaten at Sukiya so that was our choice for dinner.
Son with his new handphone. We finally allowed him to upgrade his handphone.

No, we didn't buy it for him. It comes from his own pocket money.
Time to eat!

Our choice : beef and lamb. No chicken.

I actually prefer lamb more than beef this time around.
With kimchi and miso broth.
Swirl. Swirl. Swirl. 
My indulgence that day was the ice cream.

I had three cups!

Since my lens is a so-called custom made, need to do in Japan Nikon lens; I gotta wait two weeks for my  new spectacles to be ready. 

So I'll be returning to Paradigm Mall again before or after the Chinese New Year. ^^

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Butter Fruit / Velvet Apple First Bite

I read somewhere that when Putrajaya was being developed, it was planted with a lot of local and indigenous trees some of which are rare to the general public.
 
It is really a good move and my family and I do enjoy our occasional stroll in Putrajaya and see trees that we might not have seen otherwise.
 
Some areas where these trees are planted are marked and labelled so we learn about them, and at other areas;  don't.
 Just like this Butter Fruit / Velvet Apple / Buah Mentega fruit trees.
 
Thank goodness for Mama Kucing Kathy who managed to help identify the fruit. Thank you! ^^
 
As we already know that the fruits are edible; the next time we came across the fruiting trees, we can't resist tasting them. Best of all, since it's located in a public park, it's free. I don't suppose we are doing anything illegal picking up the ripe fruits... especially the fallen ones.
 
Anyways, if you want to know more about the fruit and tree, click this link.
 A big one that fell of a tree.
 It has a sweet sourish aroma that made you think of soursop but rather dry flesh.
Tasted like a cross between soursop and nona for me. It left a slightly bitter aftertaste but I kinda like this smooth tasting fruit.
 
Yumms. ^^
 
I wonder what "new" local fruits we'll find next.

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