Sunday, November 29, 2015

Weddings, weddings everywhere.

Winter is making its grand appearance a wee bit too early this time. It's only November and sejuknya kemain habaq hangg. Disebabkan kesenduan musim sejuk plus the seasonal affective disorder ie SAD (how sad?) this time lebih parah daripada biasa, here's the rest of what's left of my summer break last time to mend the sad heart.

And we shall start with this handsome chap.

Nothing much, just the love of my life doing his own thing, being handsome and all.

Another love of my life, the guardian of level 25 dengan baju kotak kotak siap tuck in, nak pegi manattew.

I know I posted a picture of us at Yana's wedding, but the pelamin was so pretty must post another picture of it!

Wedding abang Aisyah, in which I only got to attend because our parents are friends. Aisyah and I were part of the G13 back in our high school. Otai okay. Sekarang kawan kawan G13 masih aktif berleluasa (kah!) cuma saya saja yang tercampak jauh di negara orang menyebabkan kenduri kahwin sorang pun takpernah attend, makanya terus ketinggalan and more ketinggalan. 

Amalin, the latest cousin yet. Her older sister, Alisya, calls her A'alin. Too cute rawr.

And here's Danial pembaca doa at Kak Tini's wedding! At some point he stuttered for a bit then paused, then chuckled to himself before continuing like nothing happened. Comel gila. Kadang kadang I confuse sebab Danial is obviously very tall and tanned (by their family's standard, anyway) so bila dia buat benda benda comel eg suruh Kak Bella tengok wisdom teeth dia yang baru nak keluar, I confuse dia ni adik ke abang ke apa. Sebab kemain tinggi and muka serius tapi bila buat comel terus rasa macam, awhhh. 

Oh, he's actually Adam's younger brother btw. Lol.

The Red Team - Kak Ina, Danial and Mak Long 

The Takde Theme (geddit geddit?) Haha. 
This is Umi and Wan, and Bella too wee!

Family photo!

Speaking of Kak Tini, semalam Adam cakap, Kak Tini yang baru kahwin tu pun dah pregnant, I pressure tau.

Nampak tak permainannya di situ?

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Hold the fortress.

"Go marry someone you know, marry someone you have seen his disappointment and anger, and you know you can handle it. Go marry someone you truly love." - Mat Luthfi

I'm writing this as I sit in the living room contemplating whether or not I should go to clinic this morning, while Adam is peacefully dozing off in bed, marking the start of his enviable 8 days straight of annual leave.

I've seen that man at his high before. In fact, I first truly get to know him when he was at his peak in college. Things only got better when he started medical school. Holding the title of a President for two years in a row for two different societies, setting up a legacy where things were never done before, this man is amazing. He believes he could take on the world if he wants to.

Then for a split second the wheel turned around. After years of glory and a smooth-sailing journey, He was at the darkest pit that even thinking about it scares me now.

For a while, disappointment and anger were his new best friends. I faded into the background, becoming more and more invisible as time went.

"Hold the fortress."

It was easy to just crumble and fall apart as he went down, for it hurt me as much as it did to him. 

But hold the fortress.

Because this man, this one great man that you chose to marry when he was at his high, will somehow, at some point,  have his low side. And to keep holding the fortress when it doesn't look as glorious, as promising, is the promise that you unrealising made when you chose to marry him. 

And because this man, this one great man, is that one greatest thing that has ever happened to you. 

That one greatest thing that I can truly say, mine.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

København, Denmark Day 2 + Departure Day.

Still on Day 2 in Copenhagen, later in the evening. We went to Tivoli, the second oldest amusement park in the world. Well actually, the oldest amusement park is also in Denmark.

The Danes sure sound like fun people.

Entry fee is about 99DKK equivalent to roughly £10pp. The decoration theme changes according to the season and celebration that's going on. We went there during Halloween time, thus it's only natural to have loads and loads and loads of pumpkins. Real pumpkins! I bet if you make pengat labu out of them you can feed a whole village during Ramadhan.

Motif masak pengat labu di bulan puasa?

Anyways, the rides costs on average 30DKK to 100DKK. The more thrilling the ride is, the higher the price goes. Needless to say it's not really for the thrill-seekers, more like for the ambience and spirit of whatever season you're in at that time.

Oooh I bet their Christmas theme would be pretty!

Anyways, pictures!

One extra large pumpkin hanging around (literally) at the entrance gate

They do something like a light and sound show everynight at 1045pm. That. Is. So. Very. Late. I know. To hang around in the freezing cold weather just for the show sounds a bit daft, but we did it anyway. And it was amazing.

Too cool. We went back at about 11pm and was quite surprised that the streets were still buzzing with people. Unlike in UK where the cities go to sleep at about 8pm.

Day 3, aka home day, yay!

We went to an artificial beach just to kill some time before going to the airport. Again, it wasn't really the best weather for a stroll on the beach. Took some pictures as it was really quiet and I couldn't say no to a beach remote selfie. 

This, lasted for about 10 seconds.

While this, is what happened behind scene most of the times. You hopeless romantic, you.

We then went to the National Aquarium (again, to kill time) and saw loads of fish! The very big fan of fish in me got excited but the wobbly legs were on strike together with the tummy, altogether making Bella a slightly grumpy woman.

But hey, fish!

At about 6pm we left the aquarium walked (again!) to the airport. Never in my entire life have I actually walked to the airport. It was actually not too bad, about 20 minutes walk but since the whole trip has been about walking, even the idea of stepping your foot one after another became less appealing. And I ended up walking barefoot along the road going to the airport.

For all we know I could be arrested for some mental instability or something.

Anyways, our flight was later at 10pm something and we arrived Leicester at 1am something and totally conked out the next day. 

Should do this again, man.

Friday, November 13, 2015

København, Denmark Day 2.

Right. Day 2 of Denmark before I forget.

(I've probably forgotton half of it by now anyway.)

Day 2. Friday.

Due to the absurdly long rest that we had the night before, I managed to do some googling of things to do in Copenhagen (CPH). Admittedly there's a lot of museums (cough) like any other European cities (albeit Denmark is actually Scandinavian, or Schengen? you read and tell me) so personally to us, there's probably not much to do. But one thing that we did manage to find out is the free walking tour they have daily. So armed with thousands of excellent reviews on Trip Advisor, we headed up and early to the City Hall Square where the meeting point is.

I said up and early because our previous Euro trips have shown that 11am to be the time when we're both still scrambling over tiny hotel room deciding who should have a shower first.

And guys, the tour was, fan-tas-tic.

For something as free as the air you breathe in, I'll say it again, it was, fan-tas-tic.

They work on a tip basis, so do give them some tip, whatever you think the tour is worth for.

The City Hall Square

Our tour guide, Rikke, born and bred in Denmark, a true Dane. She's hillarious and funny but not in a weird way. You know sometimes when people try to be funny and make jokes but everyone else are not getting it and in the end there's only awkward silence and polite nods? That is definitely not her.

If you look closely at the corner of the building there's actually a thermometer showing current temperature. It's not as obvious in the daylight but as you scroll/read this post further, we'll see it a bit better in a different picture. (in a tour guide voice)

And here's the biggest fact that we learnt during the trip - Carlsberg is actually originally from Denmark. We kept getting it confused with Guinness, which is obviously Irish, hence the surprise. But anyways, above is the place where Carlsberg founder, JC Jacobsen was born. He named the company, Carlsberg, after his son, Carl Jacobsen. Well not that we drink anyway, but it's nice to know the history around something you see so commonly that even Carlsberg and Guinness become mixed up.

Here's another fact around CPH. They had two big fires in the 1700s destroying most of the city. After the second fire in 1795, the new buildings were built such that the corners were cut out, ie no sharp corners. This was to allow the fire trucks to get to the streets around the city centre, since fires were a big thing during that time. And guess what, the City Hall that we saw earlier is actually the fourth city hall of CPH, after the first two burned down in fire. The third one is now used as a court, and the fourth one is what you see today.

Hotel D'Angleterre, a 5-star hotel where the Nazi camped during their stay in Copenhagen. It is Adam's dream that one day we'll get to stay there, although I highly doubt that I ever want to come to Copenhagen, again. But one fine day, that is.

A march from the palace to I'm not sure where, and I've also forgotten what was the occasion.

Nyhavn (pronouned new-haan), the bit of Copenhagen that you see on postcards. It's a lovely place to hang around, but slightly more expensive than everywhere else in the city. Reminded me a bit of the Nine Streets of Amsterdam, but to be fair Amsterdam is a whole lot of canals, so it's kinda pointless to compare the two, really.

My favourite thing about Denmark - their monarchy! This is actually a palace, there's another two buildings of almost similar architecture for different royal families who live there. And while we thought Queen Elizabeth of United Kingdom has been around since, you know, forever, the monarchy of Denmark is actually the oldest in the Europe. It has been said that when Queen Elizabeth came to visit the royal family in Denmark, she had to bow to them because their monarchy is much older than UK's. To what extent is this true, I have no idea.

Another fascinating fact (good pun?) about the Danish monarchy is that they are of very humble people. In the above picture you see the Princess Mary, the Crown Princess of Denmark cycling with her two kids. Remember how I said the Danes cycle everywhere? Even the royals cycle you see! She met the Prince of Denmark, Prince Frederik in Sydney during Olympics, where she had no idea who he was. If you google up their love story, it seems like some kind of a perfect modern-day fairytale, where a prince met a commoner and have loads of beautiful children (four, to be exact).

But anyways, back to being humble, their children all went to public schools, and refused to be treated as the royalty. And as you can see even their palace is not of a high-gated well-secluded area away from sights of the commoner (like us). We even caught her on camera, chilling cycling like nobody's business with her two kids. Ahh happy life.

Copenhagen Opera House, one of the most expensive opera houses ever built.

** Tour ended somewhere around here. **

But seriously guys, if you ever go to any European cities that offer free walking tour and you have no specific plans, might as well give it a go. We wondered why hadn't we done that before in other cities. It was so worth it that the cheapskate in us didn't mind tipping Rikke for the tour.

Three hours of sakit kaki, no regrets.

Here we can see one of the most disappointing landmarks, The Little Mermaid. Although admittedly it is some kind of a must-see in Copenhagen. Don't be deceived by this picture, it's absolutely tiny, and sits absolutely still (haha). We only went to see her because we were in the area, if not, I'll definitely give it a pass. And people, honestly, forget it. Unless you're a big fan of HC Andersen, the original author of he fairytale Little Mermaid, in which case you'd probably get one of the biggest satisfaction in life by seeing this very patient lady waiting for the love of her life, until today (or ever).

Adam was so amused by the cycling route here in Copenhagen that I had to take this picture. 

(Only to came back to UK and realise that the UK also have something like this, albeit not as sophisticated).

And that sums up the day. We went back to the hotel for a bit then left again in the evening to the second oldest theme park in the world - Tivoli, which will hopefully be in a different post because it's just a whole load of pictures.

All in all we walked for a total of nine hours, me in the bloody boots and whatnot. Survived, phew.

And as promised, here is the giant thermometer at the city that we saw earlier. At night.

See that thing on the right most? Just under the Thai sign (not very Danish I suppose). It was 10°C that night. 

Itu je.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

København, Denmark Day 1.

When I was small Ayah used to respond to my "Where are you/we going?" questions with random places/cities as an answer. Denmark was one of them.

And when Adam had lots of annual leave to spend and I myself just finished my Paediatrics block last week, we decided that Denmark would be a great place for our next adventure!

Yes, we've been so old and boring that the last time we went on a real trip was on 2012, few months after we got married. We had a plan to go to USA which didn't happen and for some reasons I'd like to think that we're so traumatised by it that we didn't go anywhere for years after.

Drama sangat.

Anyway, here, Denmark.

Took a very early flight which meant that we had to leave the house at about 3am. We left at about 4am actually since I decided that I wanted to take a shower at the very last minute. Hehe. Parked the car at Long Term Parking London Luton Airport and barely made it in time for the flight phew!

We flew Easyjet which was okay (and not to mention, cheap) arriving the airport at about 10am local time. Figuring that we had loads of time to kill before checking in at 3pm later, we took our sweet own time having breakfast of fried rice that I packed earlier. Mak mak sangat bawak bekal okay.

Denmark uses Danish Kroner (DKK) as their currency. £1 is roughly equivalent to 10DKK. In term of value-wise, it's not much different from GBP. A proper meal will cost you around 80-100DKK, which again, is pretty much the same as here in UK. Not particularly a cheap destination I guess.

Their public transport is very easy to get our head around, although to be fair we only took the Metro from the airport, and a bus later. Again like Amsterdam, the ticket works on a timely basis. a 3-zone ticket (which is from the airport to city) costs 36DKK and is valid for about 1.5hour. The Metro takes about 15mins from airport to city centre so you have plenty of time to get around the city using the same ticket.

The nearest Metro stop to our hotel, which also happens to be right bang in the city centre.

We decided to roam around since we still have plenty of time before checking into the hotel. So we used the same ticket to get a bus and went to Tivoli area where there's also a tourist information centre. One thing about us is that we always travel with a bagpack/rucksack each, so getting around on foot isn't really an issue, yay! (trying not to judge the suitcase hoarders, hehe)

We just walked around the city soaking the atmosphere (and rain) killing time, really. But to be honest, my feet were already killing me since I was wearing my heeled boots. Which was very weird considering I lived in them for nearly two months last year travelling around with my parents and inlaws! Tak, serius sedih okay bila kaki dah start sakit. It's like, am I really that old? But it has only been a year and I was perfectly fine before! :(

Anyways, some pictures of the streets of Copenhagen.

A shopping mall called Illum. Which is nothing compared to our Mid Valley mahupun IOI City Mall (nak jugak).

The inside.

An observatory tower we came across on our walk. Adam wanted to go in but I was *kinda* reluctant to. It was very cloudy so I thought we might not be able to see much. Would be a waste of money then. 

The entrance.
Actually my kaki sakit, itu je sebab I taknak masuk panjat bangunan tinggi tinggi hahaha.

Fun fact on Denmark. More than 50% of the Danes cycle as their main way to get them to places. To school, to work, to everywhere. It's been said that in every 7 minutes a bike gets stolen in Copenhagen. Well I know the Dutch cycle a lot too, but I'm not sure if it's a means of transportation or merely for the fun/tourism side of it but the Danes sure love their bicycles.

Heart dropped.
Can't handle this.

(I just have to).

Caught some instant fried rice in a supermarket just before checking into our hotel!

Just realised that I didn't take any pictures of our hotel room, which was really nice albeit a bit cramped. Since it's right *bang* (I just have to say it) in the city centre, we took the luxury of chilling in the late afternoon..

Which means sleeping in til night. How typical of us. 

First day well spent, no regret.