ike any kid that grew up in Brunei, every now and then we need to have a taste of home. In Brisbane, you can seek it out in Chinatown or Sunnybank where most of the Asian restaurants are. You can get a chicken rice or a roti for ten bucks and it’s actually not that bad. But there’s nothing like coming back home and having the real deal. Over the Christmas break last year, Jen and I visited Singapore and Malaysia.
My parents retired in Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia so ‘home’ isn’t Brunei anymore. But anyone who grew up in Brunei and regularly visited Kuala Lura or Labuan would know that Malaysia is just as familiar with its culture and cuisine.
When I think of memories of growing up in this part of the world, I think of Tiger beer, roti, sticky humid weather, ice cold air conditioning, milo ping, International School students and my dad’s trusty old Feroza. It was great to take a walk down memory lane in December and do it all over again.
Singapore is a different kettle of fish. Singapore was always that city where I would spent 8 hours in transit on the way to New Zealand or Scotland. This time we spent five days there. I didn’t quite get to relive my teenage experience of Singapore (Tower Records doesn’t exist anymore) but I had a terrific time exploring the city. Orchard Road with its endless parade of cosmetics stores and designer clothing stores doesn’t really do it for me but if you’re game to hop on the MRT and go for a ride you can have a lot of fun exploring places like Tiong Bahru and Demspey Hill which is exactly what I did.
Here I am at Changi Airport, ready to start my Singapore and Malaysia adventure
The best curry in Singapore is at Samy’s. Served up on a banana leaf, you should have the lamb, chicken and fishhead curries with a side of lime juice
The fish head curry at Samys
Singapore Chicken Rice at Tiong Bahru food court
Signboard at Tiong Bahru
The most popular chicken rice in Singapore is at Tian Tian in Maxwell Hawker Centre
The queue :(
The famous Tian Tian chicken rice
Boutique bookstore in Tiong Bahru
…that happens to sell cassette tapes and Subbuteo sets
“Poh-tea-toh” It literally serves chips and tea 0_o
Writing a New Years message for Singapore with an old friend
Tasty but outrageously over priced ($27)
Pork broth in suburban Singapore
Yum cha in Singapore because why not
Sting ray in Glutton Bay
Malaysia, Mum and Monsoon rain
Beverley Hills, Kota Kinabalu
Rainy Selfie (it rained a lot)
Just like home!*
Breakfast at Mum and Dads
I un-ironically love shitty bootleg DVD covers. There is something about those faded colours and crammed headshots. I can’t get enough.
Rambutans! One of my favourite SE Asian fruits
My dads trusty ride. Twenty years, still going strong.
I was surprised that counter-culture books in Malaysia are sold openly in shopping malls
Nothing like an ice cold Tiger after a round of golf
Tea, Mince pie, Bolkiah
Papaya for brekkie
Says it all really
Having lunch with my folks at the best laksa joint in KK
Yee Fung Laksa