The Journey…

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Since returning from Canada, I  keep saying that I want to migrate (one day when Malaysia become an Islamic state). Then one day someone told me yes I should because Malaysia is this and that, but I quickly jump to Malaysia’s defend and say I love Malaysia, this is home and no place is better than home. As great as Canada is, it is no Malaysia. Where in Canada can we wake up in the middle of the night and go out for a plate of mee goreng? Saying I want to migrate is my way of remembering my vacation in Canada.

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The Power of Innocence

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My whole family has not had an overseas trip together for at least 20 years, the reason being my dad does not believe in wasting money on holiday and my mom has difficulty walking. However, with one line uttered – “gong gong (Mandarin for grandpa), come see Lucille!” – all hearts melted and a journey of more than 20 hours of traveling was set. My sister did give birth to two cheeky, adorable kids. Seeing them run out to hug us when we arrived had stamped into my memory, I kept playing that moment in my mind when it was time to leave. I guess what I want to sum up is, this is a holiday that I wasn’t too excited about, but seeing my niece and nephew at their cutest age was worth the money spent and the torturous flight.

A little update…

After a week of seemingly endless errands, which included trips to the tax and utility companies’ offices, an intense, last-minute packing and a hurried handover, I left Beijing.

I thought I would be overcome by a flood of emotions when I stood before the boarding gate, but on the early hours of June 25, after tweeting a farewell note, all I craved for was a good rest on that delayed red-eye.

This flight is barely two weeks ago and yet I cannot recall at all now which side of the plane was I sitting at, and who was the passenger next to me. Did I watch a movie on the plane? What did I eat? Did I manage to catch some sleep?

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Peking Duck Burger

Eating a whole Peking duck at a restaurant often feels very ceremonious. A chef will carve the freshly roasted duck next to your table, steam rising as the skin is sliced off. The process feels grand and purposeful.

Enjoying the dish is a graceful affair. Thin slices of skin and meat are dipped into sauce (each restaurant boasts its own specialty sauce) and then arranged on a sheet of pancake together with shreds of scallions and cucumber. Next, roll and fold the pancake into a small little bolster. When you bite into the ensemble, sweet bean sauce leaks into your mouth, paving the way for the rest of the fillings.

Dadong, a famous Peking duck chain, is reinventing the way to enjoy the imperial delicacy. Instead of a formal sit-down meal, it is providing an alternative: grabbing the treat to-go.

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A Hong Kong delight

Hong Kong didn’t feel like a total stranger even though it has been almost 30 years since I last went there, when I was nine or 10. However, I have very little memory of the city so this trip was a new discovery. It was a very short trip and I certainly hope I can return to see more of it. I will let my pictures tell you how I see Hong Kong. Check out the photos on my website: Hong Kong Through Sam’s Eye



The countdown has begun

When I was posted to Beijing, China, three years ago, I had worried that I might give up and run away before the initial two-year contract ended. I was not confident that I would do well professionally, so leaving has always been my perfect fallback plan. “If it doesn’t work out, I’ll just take the next flight back to Malaysia,” I told myself. To be honest, it was more than just a comforting thought. I was so convinced that I would eventually take that route and never look back.

And then six months slipped past. I was still hanging in there. I hit the one year mark and looked forward to the second year. Then I extended my contract for another year. And now, the time has finally come for me to leave.

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