Monday, June 04, 2007

My Two Lovely Lovely Babies

Zuwern has just started clapping his hands these few days and he really enjoys doing that. And Zerlynde simply loves her brother so very much. It is such a pleasure to see them at play....

French Festival 2007

We managed to catch 3 films this year over a stretch of one week. We saw the first one, "La vie en rose" (La Mome), on Sat 26th May, a film about the life of Edith Piaf, the great French singer. Both Kitty and I liked it. We even shed some tears at one part! Hubby on the other hand found it abit depressing. (He was hoping to catch "Pirates of the Carribean" but was dragged along by us ladies for La Mome instead, much to his regret!) Zerlynde slept halfway thru and Zuwern was a really good baby and didn't make any noise (except when he poo-pooed and I had to bring him out of the theater to change him thus missing a bit of the movie)

Sunday evening, Kitty and I caught the 9pm "Priceless" (Hors de prix). We brought Zuwern along (!) while hubby stayed home with Zerlynde. Priceless is a romantic comedy featuring Audrey Tautou. It was very sweet and witty and entertaining. I called it the modern "Breakfast At Tiffany" for reasons of my own. And Oh! The clothes worn by Audrey Tautou in the movie is to die for! This is one movie I don't mind watching again and again, and I have this feeling there'll be a DVD release quite soon, so I'll be keeping a look out.

The other one we watched was "You Are So Beautiful" (Je vous trouve tres beau), last Sat 2nd June. This film won the Best First Fiction at the French Academy Awards 2006 apparently. And this time, there was no complaint from hubby who found it to be rather entertaining. Both the babies were not at their best behaviour, so I found myself having to bring them out of the theatre a few times, so as not to disturb the rest of the viewers, who must have thought us pretty inconsiderate to have brought such young "viewers" along with us to the movies. I really didn't want to miss this annual event, so decided to breach a protocol.

Wished I had more time to watch the rest of the films shown. But I guess, 3 out of 7 is not too bad, considering the circumstances...

Oh! And those caramel popcorns were really a "must-have" for all movie viewing.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Vikram Seth the Poet

All You Who Sleep Tonight

All you who sleep tonight
Far from the ones you love,
No hand to left or right,
And emptiness above –

Know that you aren’t alone.
The whole world shares your tears,
Some for two nights or one,
And some for all their years.

Eighth Wonder of the World?

Here come real stars to fill the upper skies,
And here on earth come emulating flies,
That though they never equal stars in size,
(And they were never really stars at heart)
Achieve at times a very star-like start.
Only, of course, they can’t sustain the part.
[Fireflies in the Garden by Robert Frost]

We were off to see the fireflies on May 1st at the Firefly Park Resort at Bukit Belimbing. It took us about one and a half hour to reach there by car from home. After check in at the chalet and a brief repose, we had a small meal at the Seafood Restaurant in the Resort and had the most delicious mushrooms ever! Since it was still early after that, we decided to check out the town of Kuala Selangor, a fishing village a mere 15 minutes drive away. The town was full of seafood restaurants and shops selling sea produce. Right at the heart was a pasar malam full of seafood vendors displaying their products and customers both locals and tourists looking for the best bargains. We drove around to look for a restaurant to patronize for dinner later. And Kenzu and my dad couldn’t resist buying a really huge and fresh pompret at this shop just beside the Kuala Selangor Restaurant right next to the river for dinner. Kitty, the junkie on the other hand bought some fish crackers to nibble in the car.

Back at the Resort, we all took a short nap before getting ready for our special agenda. The plan was to go for the fireflies viewing at around 8pm and be back for dinner at around 9pm. We made the mistake of not having bought our tickets early! At 9.30pm, we found ourselves still waiting to get into the queue to get onto the boat. It’s a public holiday and a busload of tourists had arrived earlier. Kenzu and my dad hinted that we should perhaps give up the plan but Kitty and I were adamant about going ahead despite the long wait.

Finally at around 10pm, our number was called up. We proceeded to join the queue, asked to choose and wear our life jackets and were led to a dark and steep aluminium walkway which we had to walk through to get to the pier. It was actually quite scary. I was so worried for both my parents. And having a baby in my arms really did not help! Yes, we made the mistake of bringing our 2 treasures along. On hindsight, it was very foolish of us! But I was hoping to bring Zerlynde to view the so-called “Eighth Wonder of the World” before they’re extinct!

Anyway, with some difficulties, we all got into the boat safely. Dad regretted joining us and dampened our spirits with moans and groans. And as we sailed further along the riverbanks of the mangrove swamps, the flickering lights of the fireflies came into view. They were not as spectacular as we had imagined and were far from being like Christmas trees as mentioned in the Firefly Park Resort website. Still, I couldn’t help but admired this gift of light nature had to offer, and was thankful that I was alive to see this rare sight. However, I must admit, I was very uneasy the whole boat trip and was relief when it was finally over. Morbid as it may sound, I kept thinking of the best strategy to adopt should we have the misfortune of a capsized boat!

At 11pm, most of the restaurants were closed. Luckily we found one which was still open to cater to the night owls. Dad and Kenzu were finally happy to have the best steamed fish ever.

The following day, we went for our lunch at the recommended Oceanview Restaurant. More seafood there, both dad and Kenzu ate to their hearts’ content. Asked if they would go to Kuala Selangor again, their reply was yes, but only for the seafood! Then we went shopping for some more fish, scallops and fish crackers before we took a slow drive home.

A mention must be made of our stop at the town of Ijuk, for the most wonderfully mouth-watering Chendol Pulut, a delicious finale to our short trip.