Purple has now turned blue... purple is joy, yet blue is hope!


Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Digi Follows Me & my Joybook

One thing I would like to emphasize, I am not a gadget queen nor a geek!... but I do admit that I am addicted to web surfing (sometimes), especially when I am statying out from home, stays waiting with a boring face. ;)

At times, some could see me sitting quietly web surfing or IM'ing with my beloved J-book (named after its Joybook!). With a J-book, I am preparing myself for a soon upcoming boring and restless trips. I need my beloved accompany to cheer me up. How could I get myself online at places without WiFi and internet access?

We heard a lot of 3G, 3.5G, WiMax, etc.... of internet connection in the market lately. Mind me, I don't think I am up-to-date enough with all the technologies out there. Seeing a friend of mine whom usually gets connected with his BB BlackBerry, I was kind of wondering if I could do so with my current Sony Ericsson z610 pinky phone and its Digi Prepaid subsription. Understand Digi has currently only up to EDGE connection, slighly below expectation compare to 3G.

Anyway, guess I will not explain much on the difference of such connection type, those who interested could get the explanation from google.com. I would just show what I discovered and experienced with my current phone.
  • Software : Sony Ericsson PC Suite 4.0 (downloadable from SE website)
  • Phone : Sony Ericsson z610 pinky flip phone
  • Service Provider : Digi Prepaid Plus
  • Phone Connection : Via USB

First Test (click pic to enlarge)
The Result : I got a very good reception from my home, with the speed of 460kbps. Is it fast? Sorry, I have no idea. At that stage, I didn't browse any website, didn't logon to Yahoo Messenger. I then quickly logon to Digi's online OCS to find out how much it had cost me to get that connection. To my surprised, I was not charged at all !!!

I then browse through their website (2nd pic above), read its condition and found out that.... "you only need to pay when do make a data transfer". No wonder. But then, I found out the website has a minor error - misstated "GPRS" as "GPSR".

Weirdly, I saw the there was UMTS (3G) connection stated in the software. So, does it means the Digi has its connection improved from EDGE to 3G at certain network coverage area? Not sure.... let's give my geek friend homework to further research.

Second Test (click pic to enlarge)

The Result : I managed to gain only Good Reception, compared to the first test. Same thing, I have got a UMTS (3G) connection too. Unfortunately, the speed had dropped to 115kpbs.

I did some browsing to my blogsite - http://purplesdiary.blogspot.com, with lots of photo loading... the browsing time was not too bad. Acceptable. Thus, I am quite satisfied with its performance.

Finally, I came by to the Digi's OCS site again, checked my itemized billing.... GUESS WHAT I GOT???? Total bill of RM2.60 for barely 4+ minutes of webbrowsing. Oh no, I felt the pain. Somewhat expansive from what I expect. Looks like I can only use this connection when I am desperately wanting to get online. I learned a lesson here... hehe

Conclusion..... I wonder if I would need to convert to Digi's Postpaid + data package. According to my friend, it only cost additional RM66 for data package. Seems it can be something to-be considered. When??? Will see.

One thing I have yet to resolve, was the the Bluetooth connection to my phone set via SE PC Suite software. Wonder if I should use other freeware/software out there instead.

I have been a loyal Digi Prepaid customer for the past 11 years. Averagely I will only hit RM100/3 months. I was so used to reloading my prepaid phone every 3 months. Even that, I will always have balance of RM100++. Somehow, I noticed Digi has slightly changed the Prepaid plan, and my expiry was extended till 12 months instead of every 3 months. But they encourage RM200 and above reload within the period of 3 months, giving addition % of talktime. I had just reloaded my Prepaid for that reason, so.. let's see for another first 3 months of 2009 if that will push me to switch to Postpaid plan.

Till then.

Food Surprises - Roasted Pork @ Buntong Market, Ipoh

Before the year ends, guess I have a several blogs pending for release... this is one of them from my last trip detour back to Ipoh, on the way to Cameron Highlands.

This particular roasted pork stall, selling my favorite type of roasted pork - Siu Yok (烧肉) was discovered by parents. My parents had migrated to Ipoh for almost 2 years, and they had just found out this Chinese Village market recently.

This was part of the dishes we brought to Cameron Highlands on the last trip. Many found this roasted pork tastes good too. Therefore, we headed back to the same market, same stall on the day before we leave Ipoh back to KL.

In normal day, or some non-crowded hours, this particular stall does not seemed to be crowded with customer. Not too sure if this stall is popular among the locals in Buntong, or named Guntong in some maps. My taste comment might be wrong, to me.. I believe there should be more stalls within Ipoh that sells good roasted pork, particularly siu yok. I do hope to discover more next time.

(Click to enlarge)
GPS Coordinate : N4 35.806 E101 03.849

The name card looks cute right??

Oh yeah, by the way, just to site track a bit and show what dish I had that day, before I left home. Hehehe.. home cook Lala (oyster) ! Nice? Cooked by my dad.. not me.. hehe :)

Monday, December 29, 2008

The Popular Food Guide MALAYSIA

Can you spot the difference? If not, click to enlarge.

I bought the first book (on the right) more than a year ago, in 2007. And just few days ago, I bough the second series (on the left). I checked the content of the 2nd series couple of times, while I was shopping at Popular Bookshop, Ikano. I pretty sure the contents do not repeat... Why would I be so sure? Well, coz I had been browsing the 1st book many times lately.

Why would I invest on such book when there are a lots of flogger (Food blogger) out there? Well, investing only RM15.90 for convenience while you are out on the road can be a better deal. I had experienced once, when we were out somewhere in a 3pm afternoon, not lunch nor dinner time... it had been hard to grab foodstall, good or at least moderate and trustable one.

Of course, GPS can be another helpful tool too. Somehow, when there is no picture or written comment about the place, we might not be attracted to it.

So, I had invested to the 2nd series this year - Dec 2008, as I found it has better coverage of food places. RM15.90 now.. in fact it was RM15.90 too for the 1st series, but on top of that, there was 20% discount for Popular member.. there was no discount this time round, at least for the book store I went last Friday.

So.... food hunter friends out there.. time to explore again?

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Travel - Cameron Highlands Trip for 29pax, 6 cars

It was indeed difficult to organize such huge group, outdoor with overnight stay. And such... we made it ! and successfully made it for the first time ever ! Families were happy, kids enjoyed themselves very much, we all blended well for the 3D2N trip.

Of course, many hard work and pre-preparation work was required. Thanks to those taking the lead with strong co-operations given. Else, this will not be a success.

Several general guide before organizing such trip, and turn it to be an enjoyable one.
  • 1) Adjust ourselves to "holiday" mood - understanding among each families, stay happy and calm!
  • 2) Pre-trip meetings - iron out tasks, discuss necessary items-to-bring, document to-do / to-bring items
  • 3) Communications - emails, sms, phone calls to stay on with latest updates
  • 4) Good cook to help out in the kitchen, at least 4-5 person !
  • 5) Kids able to mix around
Hereby, below are our itineraries of the trip. In case someone would like to organize such one in near future...

  • 1) Hotel booking. 1 nite meal booking/catering
  • 2) Discussion & Planning : Things to-bring - who & what, incl. Potluck dish for nite on Day 1
  • 3) Essential item-to-bring : own plates, fork & spoon in case Lodge does not provide enough, some pots/kettle, own 3-in-1 beverages,
  • 4) Foods to bring : can drinks, wines, snacks, sponge cakes, rice, loaf of bread, ingredient for dishes that can prepare from the kitchen - soy sauce, salt, cooking oil, wet/dry mee, flour for Tong Yun (汤圆), pandan leaves, ginger, tofu, yong taofu (vege stuffed fish meat), meat balls, pau, tray of eggs, cans of tuna, charcoal, BBQ stick, aluminium foil, taugeh (bean sproud), Siu yok (roasted pork), etc....

Day 1
9:00 - Depart from Klang Valley
11:00 - Arrived Gopeng. Lunch at J.J. Huat Restaurant
12:30 - Head up to Cameron Highlands, via Simpang Pulai
14:30 - Arrived at Jurina Hill Lodge, Tanah Rata : unpack, short tea break
15:15 - Head off to Bee Farm on the way to Ringlet
16:00 - On the way back, stopped by at Cameron Valley Tea House
17:30 - Head to Healty Strawberry Farm, next Rumah Persekutuan
18:00 - Back to Jurina, prepare for dinner with potluck dishes brought by each families
20:00 - After dinner, head to pasar malam @ Brinchang

  • Comments for Day 1
  • ===============
  • - Bee farm was not impressive.
  • - Cameron Valley Tea House scenery was nice.
  • - Strawberry farm disappointed some kids where no self-puck strawberry available. * Probably was due to school holiday and the fruits were on high demand
  • - Dinner was convenient where potluck dishes available, only rice needs to be cooked and dishes need reheat.
  • - It was raining the night. Kids stayed behind at home playing games/cards. Only adult went over to pasar Malam.
  • - At pasar malam, what to get ?... veges for day 2 dinner, sweet corns, honey (got better deal from the owner of earlier bee farm), Home made ice-cream (a MUST! specially Strawberry + Mango flavour only rm1.50/scoop, alcholic ice-cream was available too)
Day 2
8:00 - Breakfast at Lodge : Bread + sambal (left over dish), steamed pau, fried rice, tuna/egg sandwiches, porridge, sponge cake
9:30 - Head off to Sg Palas BOH Plantation : Enjoy scenery, education tour, relaxing tea at tea house
11:30 - Drop by Kea Farm Market + Strawberry Farm
13:30 - Back to Jurina, Free & Easy time for dinner. Some stayed in Lodge with light lunch/tea. Some head out to Tanah Rata mainroad for mamak shop, Tea Cafe, BKT, Starbucks (hehe)
16:00 - 1 car head out to Strawberry Park junction, shop for cactus & Strawberry iced-stick. Others... relax......
18:00 - Getting ready for dinner : BBQ fire, salad, fried taugeh, aluminium wrapped corn & sweet potatoes. Food caterred we had : Curry Chicken, spring roll, big pot of rice, tofu, vege brocolli, a pot of tea.
20:00 - Nite went with games organized

  • Comments for Day 2
  • ===============
  • - BOH Plantation was relaxing, but some might be waiting for each other.
  • - Kea Farm's Strawberry farm was disappointing with no self-pluck strawberry too
  • - More relaxing...
  • - Dinner was great except down pour causing difficult access between kitchen & BBQ area
  • - Games were great, kids enjoyed much
  • - Late night preparation of Tong Yun, celebrating the exact day of end-of-winter (冬至) festival
Day 3
8:00 - Breakfast at Lodge : Bread + sambal (left over dish), left over rice / mee with left over curry chicken, sandwiches, sponge cakes, Tong Yun.
9:00 - Hang around nearby Lodge, some went for morning breeze walk
10:00 - Prepar for checkout, group photos
11:00 - Drove out from Tanah Rata towards Ringlet and Tapah old road
12:00 - Stopped by Lata Iskandar Waterfall
13:00 - Continued journey to Tapah
14:30 - Arrived Tapah for lunch (unplanned destination, found a Chinese restaurant with convenient park for 6 cars)
15:00 - Head off to Sungkai, Sg Klah Hot Spring
16:30 - Arrived at Hot Spring
18:00 - Head off back home to Shah Alam

  • Comments for Day 3
  • ===============
  • - Road down to Tapah was winding and not suitable for MPV.
  • - Good to have break at waterfall area
  • - Lunch was great although there was no pre-planning for food ordering before hand.
  • - All first timer to Sg Klah, missed junction turning after Tapah toll
  • - Kids enjoyed Hot Spring's mountain water cool pool.
* Disclaimer : Kindly note comments made were purely on authors observation and opinion. No others opinion was collected for compilation.

--- THE END ----

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Travel - Jurina Hill Lodge @ Tanah Rata, Cameron Highlands

DEC 19 - 21
Before the trip to Cameron Highland, most of us were little skeptical of the rooms, especially its cleanliness. Surfing its official websites a couple of times... http://www.regit.com/jurina/, http://jurina.cameronhighlands.com/ just couldn't help to make ourselves comfortable.

Somehow... it turned out to be as what captured below..... ;)
my room view
Balcony viewFrom the garden

From the living hall

What went well....
  1. 1) Most bedsheets were newly refurbished
  2. 2) Each bedroom has an attached bathroom, equipped with water heater
  3. 3) Kitchen was huge, equipped with gas stove, kettle, rice cooker, plates, fork and spoon, cups, mugs, glasses,.... and even a lesung (traditional pounder)
  4. 4) Has a separate dining hall
  5. 5) Common living hall was huge too
  6. 6) Has a garden BBQ area equipped
  7. 7) Garden with nice flowers and 2 furry stray dogs :)), forgot to take their pic
What's not so well...
  1. 1) Some bathroom water heater not functioning well
  2. 2) House caretaker not available some times, but we still able to get our necessary equipments from the store ;)
We had the entire bungalow rented with RM1,1o0 per night. Total 29pax including children (should say teenagers) and adults. Indeed a good deal where each person only pays RM80++ for 2 nights stay during a peak season in Cameron Highlands.

During our stay, we catered food for RM7.50/pax in which the Lodge admin helped out. We made a right choice to have cater food that night, plus our own BBQ. Reasoning being restaurants out there were all fully book and pack. It was raining that night too, imagine if we were to dine out with 29pax, it will surely messy.

Click to enlarge
GPS Coordinate : N4 28.127 E101 22.512

Jurina Hill Lodge
No. 819 Jalan Mentigi,
39000 Tanah Rata
Cameron Highlands

Tel : 605-491 5522
Fax : 605-491 5511
E-mail : jurinav@streamyx.com

New - Facial Mask from Taiwan (珍珠奈米面膜)

Before I continue with other 'heavy' blog writing, let's hang on a lil for this 'free n easy' blog topic of mine. I've recently got this lil gift from a friend who recently went holiday in Taiwan. Thanks Flo!

The very first impression I had on its packaging... indeed my very impressive Taiwanese/Japanese packaging. Taiwanese and Japanese are those who really doing well in their marketing products. To me, I would much trust Taiwanese products and more skeptical on the China mainland products.

Tho I have yet to test this out, after several googl'ing around. It seems this Brand - 我的美麗日記 has been a trusted brand in Taiwan. It has been an intro product in Taiwan Show 女人我最大推荐.

My gift comes in 2 color pack (some write ups on these 2 type) -
  1. 1) Black - Black Pearl Masks 黑珍珠奈米面膜
  2. 2) White - Pearl Powder Masks 珍珠粉奈米面膜
6. Pearl (珍珠粉面膜)

Suitable skin types: For all skin types (潤白、滋養肌膚)
Effects: Whitening and Moisturizing .Rich in Vitamin B and Seaweed Yeast compound that helps to nourish and moisturise the skin
Ingredients: Purified water、Collagen、Glycerine、Glycine、Propylene Glycol、1,3-Butylene Glycol、Extra fine pearl powder、Aloe、Licorice、Ginkgo Biloba、Lemon、L-Ascorbic acid 、Azelaic acid、Green tea、Algae-Yeast complex、Bio-active Silanols、Sodium hydroxide、Potassium hydroxide、Xanthan gum、Citric acid、Triethanolamine、Tween 20,Perfume....
特性 : 潤白肌膚

7. BLACK PEARL (黑珍珠面膜)

Suitable skin types: For all skin types, especially for dull looking skin.
Effects: Firming, regenerating, moisturising whitens and brightens the overall complexion.
Ingredients: Purified Water, 1, 3-Butylene Glycol, Glycerine, Propylene Glycol, Aloe, Hyaluronic Acid, Pineapple, Alage, Cucumber, Lime Tree, Algae-Yeast Complex, Bio-Active Silanols, Lecithin, Vegetale Collagen, Citric Acid, Royal Pearl Extract, Tween-20, Perfume......
黑珍珠所凝聚的天然活性精髓 - 能使肌膚白皙柔潤,自然保濕與嫩白,賦予肌膚絲緞般柔滑觸感,煥發珍珠般的亮麗光采!天然維他命C亮白植物精華–鳳梨、萊姆、小黃瓜,可促進角質的新陳代謝力,溫和去除表皮老廢細胞,使肌膚光滑細緻、清新柔白.

In actual fact, they have more than these 2 type of facial masks.

Other reference : http://blog.onlylady.com/article/view/23748/ (Chinese)

New - Starbucks @ Tanah Rata, Cameron Highlands

SAT DEC 20 This is my real new toy... since some of you have not seen the original one (as the previous blog was a photo from BenQ.com). I intentionally walked myself to Starbucks Coffee shop @ Tanah Rata, not too far from our lodge during my stay last weekend.

I don't remember seeing Starbucks during my last Oct '07 trip. So, I would believe this is newly opened, just lasted for about a year.

The interior setup was great. However, most people would prefer to sit at the terrace/corridor, as the weather is much cooler. On the other hand, I feel the indoor area was a bit stuffy, probably due to cost cutting, they switched off the aircon.

My only intention to hangout at this place - alone, was to enjoy peacefulness at the same time, and most importantly get online. Looks like this is the only spot I know, which we could get free internet access. In fact, an uncle from the next door mamak stall told me "you could get free internet access as long as you sit at our table right near to Starbucks". But then, I didn't shift my sit, as we had already got a sit at the other end of the corner, which then the connection was weak. Anyway, later after our afternoon lunch/tea, I got myself an espresso and enjoy my internet surfing for 1+ hour, before I walked myself back to the lodge.

It was a great and quiet afternoon on my own.. ;)

Exact location of Starbucks (in case you would need it - click to enlarge)

GPS Coordinate : N4 28.236 E101 22.675