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November 12th 2007
Published: November 17th 2007EDIT THIS ENTRY

Firies at Penang airportFiries at Penang airportFiries at Penang airport

Playing beach volleyball with engine at the ready
Thursday 8 November - continued from KL

After Vicky finished working (3 hours earlier than local time thanks to the joys of international telecommuting), we flew to Pulau Pinang, or Penang Island. The local airport firemen were playing beach volleyball as we taxied past (photos). Georgetown, where we stayed, was a short drive to the north and we settled into the Traders Hotel.

Friday 9 November

Vicky worked from the hotel (hooray for internet and IT jobs) while Barbara and I spent the morning nursing upset stomachs. Feeling the need for a little pampering, Alan, Barbara and I caught the shuttle bus to Ferranghi Beach (photo) where the Shangri-La, a sister hotel, provides resort facilities. The boys enjoyed nine holes of golf and an eco-unfriendly jetski up and down the beach while Barbara relaxed on the beach with the pleasures of a manicure and pedicure. After a late lunch back at the Georgetown hotel, we did a city tour by trishaw (a riskshaw pushed by a bicycle) (photos). It was a wonderful way to see Fort Cornwallis, the Town Hall, Little India, and Chinatown, particularly as it was slower than a car and it takes you down the
Penang airportPenang airportPenang airport

Selamat Datung = welcome. This was written at almost every shop and business
middle of the street, giving a simultaneous view of both sides, something that walking doesn’t allow. The proximity to the traffic was nerve-wrecking at first (photo), but somewhat eased by pausing for refreshments along the way.

After dinner Alan discovered the hotel’s winelist had a hidden treasure which we proceeded to unearth and uncork (photo).

Saturday 10 November

We spent a day being tourists visiting the Peranekan mansion (photo) which depicts the lifestyle and history of the Straits Chinese community, the mansion of Cheong Fatt Tze who was one of the region’s most significant entrepreneurs (photo), and a Buddhist temple. The latter had one of the largest reclining Buddhas (photo), surrounded by many thousand smaller ones on the walls (photo). Lunch was at a local hawker’s market. The presentation and service are very different from Sydney, however the food was very tasty (and we didn’t suffer as we did from some dodgy food from a KL Chinatown stall). The afternoon included a tour of Fort Cornwallis (photo), where Michael learnt that Penang Island was named after the betel nut ‘Pinang’ (photo). The trishaw ride home took us past a shanty village built on stilts - interesting construction
Ferranghi BeachFerranghi BeachFerranghi Beach

on the north coast, which is the main resort strip
techniques (photo)! Finally dinner was a feast of nonya cuisine (photo) at Hot Wok. Nonya is the Straights (as in Straights of Malacca) term for a woman, and Baba is a man. Nonya cooking is a fusion of Malay, Chinese and Indian, and was terrific.

Sunday 11 November

The weather was terrific providing our best view yet of Georgetown (photo). Alan and Vicky walked up Penang Hill and we caught the cable cars (photos) to the top where we met them. The view to the bridge linking the island with the mainland was spectacular. We walked down while Alan and Vicky caught the cable-car down. During our descent, Michael took a couple of photos of one of the monkeys. About 3 nanoseconds after this photo was taken (photo), the simian reacted as if confronted by paparazzi outside a nightclub and charged at Michael with teeth bared. No more photos of monkeys that day!

Before catching the flight back to KL, we drove around a large industrial estate near the airport where Dell have a computer assembly plant (one of their 3 in the world), many of its suppliers are located as are other high-tech industries.

Alan and VickyAlan and VickyAlan and Vicky

Alan eventually read the WSJ
left us at KL International Airport for her overnight flight to Sydney, and exhausted by a long weekend of eating, drinking and touristing, we crashed for our final night in KL, but not before smiling again at the lights of the Twin Petronas Towers.

Additional photos below
Photos: 21, Displayed: 21


Michael and BarbaraMichael and Barbara
Michael and Barbara

enjoying the rickshaw ride
Rickshaw viewRickshaw view
Rickshaw view

Alan and Vicky disappear into the intersection. Traffic signs are either advisory or for humour
Love LaneLove Lane
Love Lane

The amusement from various uses of English is nothing compared to the entertainment of Michael's attempts at Malay
A findA find
A find

And a very fine drop too
Ornate decorOrnate decor
Ornate decor

from the Peranekan mansion
Reclining BuddhaReclining Buddha
Reclining Buddha

Vicky says the one in Bangkok is (much) larger!
Small BuddhasSmall Buddhas
Small Buddhas

Just a few of the thousands lining the temple's walls
Hawker's marketHawker's market
Hawker's market

Great tasting food and atmosphere
Fort Cornwallis cannonFort Cornwallis cannon
Fort Cornwallis cannon

This is probably the cannon that was captured several times over the centuries by the different powers in the area
Pinang plantPinang plant
Pinang plant

How the island got its name (Pinang=betelnut)

Making do - these are probably some of the biggest and strongest at the water village
Vicky, Alan, Barbara and MichaelVicky, Alan, Barbara and Michael
Vicky, Alan, Barbara and Michael

Enjoying wonderful Nonya cuisine

Looking south from the hotel window
Penang HillPenang Hill
Penang Hill

The first of two cable cars up to the top (800m+)
Crossing cable carsCrossing cable cars
Crossing cable cars

Not too much stretch and bounce on these cables (thank goodness)
The view from the topThe view from the top
The view from the top

Looking SE to the bridge to the mainland

One photo's ok, two is not

1st March 2008

Hi just wanna say greetings from us. Hope u guys really did enjoy ur vacation in Penang. N thanks for the great comments Take care...... Hot Wok Nyonya Penang Management

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