A Hundred Years in Ipoh

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Being married to a man from Perak, it was inevitable that as I learned to love this person, I also had to learn to love his home state. Fortunately, neither task was too difficult to accomplish! Perak has been fantasized, romanticized and idealized by all sorts of people from all walks of life throughout Malaysian history. In the days when tin prices were sky high, the Kinta Valley in Perak, possessing the world’s richest alluvial tin deposits, held promise of great fortunes for already-wealthy businessmen, small-time speculators and the average dreamer.

A Steamy Affair In Tambun

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It's not something you expect to see, but on the walls of one of the limestone caves deep in Tambun, Perak, are some markings that might be dismissed as careless graffiti at first. A closer examination reveals that they are actually Japanese characters that link to Tambun's past. Apparently, the messages, mostly names in Japanese and expressions of homesickness, are believed to have been written by the Japanese soldiers who were in Ipoh in the 1940s.

Rainforest World Music Festival (RWMF)

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Each year, the Rainforest World Music Festival (RWMF) never ceases to amaze, tantalise, surprise while showcase engaging talents from around the world. This year, in the 13th edition of RWMF there will be the Bisserov Sisters, a group performing from Bulgaria. Gifted with fine voices and musical memories, they have performed around the world from more than 30 years.

Sri Maha Mariamman Temple, Penang

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Located in Penang’s ‘Little India’, in the capital city of Georgetown, the Sri Maha Mariamman temple reflects the city’s rich cultural heritage. This tropical island of Penang, lies in the Indian Ocean, just off the north-west coast of Peninsular Malaysia. Penang’s rapid growth as a trading hub in the early 1800s, especially in commodities such as nutmegs, cloves and pepper attracted traders from Europe, America, Arabia, India as well as China.

The Royal Mulu Resort

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An Orang Ulu dance enthrals guests as they arrive at the Royal Mulu Resort (RMR). The resort, a 30 minutes’ flight from Miri city in East Malaysia, is an ideal getaway. It is especially so, for those wishing to go on a trip to the famed UNESCO World Heritage site, Gunung Mulu National Park.

A short stroll: The Quaint Barber Shop

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The sharp, steel barber sheers lay unattended on the tabletop. Bottles of hair cream arranged neatly besides it. Several plastic combs bunched loosely in a container. On the walls, medium sized- posters of men sporting short hair cuts were pasted symmetrically, decorating the barber shop. There were even new ones of famous Bollywood heartthrobs. The red, stainless steel Takara barber chairs were first purchased in 1966. Purchased by its founder, the late P.A. Thangayah a highly respected figure and ex-chairman of the Indian Barber Association, the chairs are still in good condition and in use today. Situated along busy Jalan Tun Tan Cheng Lock (previously known as Foch Avenue) in Kuala Lumpur, is a quaint barber shop that you will have to drop by. With its bright red signage, the Stylo Hair Dressing Saloon, was first established in 1940.

Short stroll in Chinatown- Guan Di Temple

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The Taoist God of War, Guan Di, watches defensively over the temple entrance. Standing majestically in his resplendent uniform, his eyes fixes fiercely upon you. Known as one of China’s greatest warriors, Guan Yu, also known as Guan Di or General Kwan is also worshipped widely outside China. If you take happen to take a stroll along Jalan Tun H.S. Lee in Chinatown, Kuala Lumpur you will find a quaint temple built in the great warrior’s honour.

Thaipusam – A divine Hindu celebration

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Ancient mythology has it that, in the month of Thai in the Hindu calendar (January 15 – February 15) at an astronomically significant point of time, namely Pusam, Lord Murugan (also known as Lord Subramaniam) taught his father (Lord Shiva) the meaning of the word Aum. Aum is a highly potent terminology in Hinduism that […]

Life Lessons in Rural Malaysia

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As city dwellers, we are used to demanding for things to be done “yesterday.” We are so used to listening to the scripted customer service dialogue at fast-food counters that we’ve learned to tune it out. We are used to the mass-produced “nutrition” in polystyrene boxes. And no matter how much we “communicate” on our […]

Mengkak Longhouse, Batang Ai

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Sarawakian’s rich cultures and customs, unique traditional rituals, dances, foods, and costumes are among the things that continue to intrigue and fascinate visitors and researchers from around the world. Their warm hospitality and simple ways of life are also some of the traits that many visitors find endearing. I guess, the fascination for this exotic […]
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