Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Winter; Amsterdam Part I

After long due, I present you.. Amsterdam!

We took easyJet flying out from Belfast International to Schiphol, Netherlands. Yes I know it'd be cheaper easier yadda yadda to fly from London or at least the mainland, but Adam had his winter break a week later than mine, so being a good wife I am, I flew to Belfast few days before the trip to make him food. Or more like, to spread my stuff all over his room and annoy the crap out of him.

Alright kisah rumah tangga aside, say hello to Schiphol Airport!

We went there on 23rd December, so everything was Christmassy, which was perfect!

Took the train from Schiphol to Amsterdam Centraal Station


And here comes Amsterdam!


Amsterdam is known as Venice of the North. It has loooaads of canals, hence the name




The main intracity transportation apart from bicycles are the trams, they are plenty and frequent and fairly cheap. You can buy tickets directly from the trams drivers. The system used is by time, so it's not like LRT back in KL where the price is determined by the distance travelled (eg. Taman Melati - KLCC is RM2.00) Wow I still remember?! Well here they use time, which means there's an hour ticket up to 24 hours ticket (I think). So within that time frame you're free to travel by trams anywhere. You'd have to scan your ticket once you board the tram, the same goes to leaving the tram, and that's how the time is measured.

And this, ladies and gentlemen, is Amsterdam Centraal Station. I think all public transports like trams, buses, intercity/international trains terminate here. Even the ferries! No joke.



Having canals everywhere, the also offer cruises, which not very surprisingly, also terminates at the Amsterdam Centraal. By the way, water transportations are among the mains, if I'm not mistaken. But perhaps because it was winter no one bothers to row the boat or they might die freezing, I suppose.


See the little boats at the riverside? (river, canal, whatever) We were guessing that during spring/summer, they'd come back to life.


Our hotel room. Pretty basic with ensuite bathroom (which I love since it would be unfair if Adam could just wear his towels if it was a shared bathroom but I'd have to wear tudung and all no fair humph!) Alright where was I? Oh okay the room was alright, and having two single beds mean that we won't have to berebut curik duvet in the middle of the night again.


Amsterdam at night.




We were so hungry and we saw a loooong line queing up for this fries. Curious with what the fuss was all about, we joined the queue.

Verdict:

It was sooo good that Adam wouldn't let me come near him to steal the fries.

Joke, the fries was overrrrratedd.



And later we had some real proper dinner.


By real I mean REALLY REAL like these. Beef steaks and spare ribs.

Everywhere we went to there were always restaurants serving on Argentinian Grill, spare ribs etc. We just had to try one, and were lucky enough to find this halal restaurant somewhere I can't remember. Lol sungguh tak membantu.

But halal food in Amsterdam is baaanyak gila we even found a Thai restaurant serving halal chicken tom yam yumyum! There were Indonesian restaurants which I was sooooo keen to try but the price was like, EUR30 per person per meal. Hence, I iz sads. There were also Malaysian restaurants which kat UK pun ada so tak pandang pun kihkih, kebabs (as usual) and some others. What I'd suggest is, Google up halal restaurants before you're going to Amsterdam, and you can save your tummy from the kebab craze which let's be honest, there's only enough kebabs you can eat in one trip.



Carnivores


If you look closely you can see his non-existent muffin top. Humph no fair again!



So that's about it for Amsterdam day 1. They say too much of everything ain't no good yo so I'm stopping here. 

Till then!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Wreck this journal.

I should probably sort out our winter trip pictures since Ummi (my Ummi, that is) has been asking about them. Tak sabar nak tengok menantu kesayangan lettew.

But because I'm so lazy like that despite having three-day weekends, here's a not-so-related post.

Bought this while waiting for the train from Amsterdam to Cologne. Oh so random. And while I was ooh-aah-ing drooling over this book contemplating if I should spend €13 and add another load to my rucksack carrying it to another 4 countries when I could just buy it when I'm back in UK, guess what Adam said about it,

"The disgusting book."

How boring this guy meh.

There's a page that lists down all the materials needed, including saliva, garbage, tears and some other weird stuff like emotions, spontaneity and time.

And now you can guess why Adam calls it disgusting, I really spit out some coffee on that page. And I did it in Belfast. And Adam wasn't too happy about it. Of course things might be different if we weren't married yet. 

He might have said, oh my darling Bella, look how artistic your saliva can be. Or I could skip the spitting part and just drip the coffee from a spoon instead like some poise lady. Or I might as well not show him this book at all lol.

But my biggest achievement so far is this.
Spent some good half an hour colouring the whole page.

Well, anything that is not Medic.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Throwback.


Feels like I haven’t written for a while. The previous not so recent posts are mostly pictures and a few words. Not sure if I was too caught up with exams or it’s just me being plain lazy as if some big ass writer waiting for an inspiration. Not.

Other than exams, things are flooding in a bit too fast down here. It’s been snowing – which is a GGREEAATTT deal because snow is ALWAYS A GREAT DEAL in UK. Well at least to us the inhabitants of The Equator.



 




But here’s the biggest deal. I’ve been homesick and I still can’t find ways to cure it.

It’s there. It’s always there. I’m longing for a place to call home and some familiar faces, only that I don’t know where exactly it is. I don’t even know if it exists.

When Ummi said Ayah is trying to get a transfer back to Kuala Lumpur, I cried. When Adam said mom in law (I always try to avoid using the word his Ummi, cause she’s my Ummi too!), I cried. When I listen to the song 93 Million Miles by Jason Mraz, I cried too, again, and again.

This one thing I cannot fathom – what is it about home that I really can’t get over with. Everyone knows when I’m back in Malaysia I don’t really stay at my parents’ since they’re in Sarawak and I’d prefer to be in KL more. So I’m not exactly parents-sick. But at the same time I hate being in KL alone, with the siblings, and no parents. Is it even a home then?

But KL is so close to heart. Like Nadd said, it’s where I was left alone to pick myself up after one of the most glorious heartbreaks and failure I’ve ever had in life. I was extremely forced to be independent, to hold my own tears and keep the emotions bottled up, that I, at once, found the concrete side of me that I never knew existed.



Life was hard, but I was happy.

The empty roads at midnight near Bangunan Sultan Abdul Samad, the tau-fu-fah stall in Petaling Streets, the bright majestic view of KLCC at night, the greasy nasi lemak ayam at BRJ Wangsamaju, the sight of traffic jams on MRR2, the heavenly char kuay teow at Mali’s, the sardine-packed LRT during peak hours, the horrible traffic at Ampang heading to Ampang Point and the likes, the glitters of Genting Highland from 25th floor of our house, the amazing kerang bakar at Dagang.. I could even picture the sight of PV condominiums rising high when approached from MRR2, complete with the Sate Kajang Haji Samuri and Mamak Corner and the familiar McDonalds Taman Melati at Petronas gas station.

These are all.. Unnecessary throwbacks. I don’t know what exactly am I expecting to find every time I look back into the past. But one thing for sure, tears are inevitable.

Sometimes I feel that I put happiness such an undeserving rank of importance. Worse, that happiness has to be an extrinsic factor – new handbags, road trip with friends, a hearty meal, new craft supplies, a journal, etc.

Why can’t I be happy about nothing?

Back in KL, life was tough (again), I had almost nothing to look forward to, but minus some repressed feelings and occasional breakdowns, I can’t remember being too sad. I was happy with.. Myself.

I told mom in law about how I miss home. And her reply was a good one.


Note to self: Life is too short to keep having throwbacks. Live in the present, focus on the objectives.

Friday, January 18, 2013

From Alaska with love.

Haha jk. It's been snowing heavily in Leicester and I just couldn't resist it.


Say hi to the awkward smile!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

93 Million Miles.


"In life you're gonna go far, if you do it right you'll love where you are."

93 Million Miles, Jason Mraz

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Boyfriend pillow.

On Facetime..

Adam: How are you baby?
Bella: I can't sleep at night. So saaad.
Adam: Whyyy?
Bella: Don't know. I miss you so badd. Tapi entahlah. Maybe mengada je kot.
Adam: Haah kan. Alaa. Mengada je lah tu.



Sorang suruh beli bantal golek, sorang lagi cakap kita mengada je lebih.

I'm so gonna get one of those boyfriend pillows.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Belfast Christmas Market.

Apparently Belfast has one of the biggest Christmas markets in the UK. And living in Taman Melati KL with Uptown Danau Kota to lepak wasting time at, you can guess I'm a big sucker for flea market pasar malam and the likes. So there I went to cure my Uptown cravings.

Belfast Christmas Market 2012

Belfast City Hall




I thought these are cute. All the green Christmasy things.

Little cacti disguising as Santas. Too cute!

Spotted on! I'd probably make my kids wear this if they refuse to eat their greens.





I think it's called a Continental Market rather than just a Christmas Market, though it really doesn't matter actually. But Continental Market does more justice as this place is sure packed with stalls selling stuff from other European countries.

Germany Apple Strudel

Germany sausages, I think?

Dutch pancakes

Holland

Italian Coffee House

French Soap

Spain paella


And finally, Northern Ireland's Chocolatier!

Well there are loads of other stalls but we were in a hurry so no pictures. Overall I'd say it's a must go for people who love festive seasons and lights and food and all the Christmasy feels, especially if you're a first-timer. Of course to be in Miss Selfridge or Debenhams during for the 'real' festive season aka SALE would be more fun, but it's nice to be a part of the celebration every once in a while. Or perhaps you could just do people watching if you're socially awkward like me. Lol.