Uncategorized

Sun 19 Jul 2015

Historic Georgetown, Penang, Malaysia.

Historic Georgetown, Penang, Malaysia.

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Big Lantern

After several hours on a bus, I arrived in Penang, called “The Pearl of the Orient.” Penang is an island just off the northwest coast of peninsular Malaysia, and historic Georgetown is its major city and the food capital of Malaysia.

Colonial Buildings.

Colonial Buildings.

Colonial Buildings

Colonial Buildings

Handyman special!

Handyman special.

A center of global trade for hundreds of years, Georgetown is a multicultural city with Malay roots. Over the centuries it has been affected and influenced by traders, colonizers and settlers from Portugal, Holland, Britain, China and India.

Are they from Denmark?!

Are they from Denmark?!

I wandered around on streets that were lined with colonial buildings, some restored and some dilapidated and crumbling. I enjoyed excellent vegetarian food in Georgetown’s Indian enclave and I found a Chinese tea shop specializing in Pu’er tea.

Sheng Pu'er tea, aged ten years.

Sheng Pu’er tea, aged ten years.

Today’s Georgetown is known for its street art. I enjoyed taking photos of the art as well as the many huge hanging Chinese lanterns I saw all over town.

That's me, blending in.

That’s me, blending in.

Wall Mural.

Wall Mural.

Children on a bicycle!

Children on a bicycle!

The Blue Mansion of Georgetown businessman and politician Cheong Fatt Tze (1840 - 1916).

The Blue Mansion of Georgetown businessman and politician Cheong Fatt Tze (1840 – 1916).

Temple at the top of Penang Hill.

Temple at the top of Penang Hill.

Big Lantern.

Big Lantern.

Khoo Kongsi Clan House.

Khoo Kongsi Clan House.

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Tea

Thu 16 July 2015

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Boh Tea Estate.

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I stayed five days in Malaysia’s Cameron highlands, originally a hill station in colonial times. Having visited the Jim Thompson House in Bangkok several months ago, I was intrigued to explore the place where the “Thai Silk King” disappeared around 48 years ago, apparently without a trace.

Jim Thompson disappeared in the Cameron Highlands many years ago.

Jim Thompson disappeared in the Cameron Highlands many years ago.

My guest house was in Tanah Rata at an elevation of around 1500 meters, which meant pleasant days and cool nights. On Monday I walked downhill about four kilometers to a nearby tea plantation. Over the last few days I also did some hiking on the many trails near the town. Yesterday I took a day tour which included another tea plantation, a butterfly garden, hydroponic strawberry farm and a visit to a mossy forest.

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Mossy Forest.

Mossy Forest.

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Uncategorized

Sat 11 Jul 2015

Hoan Kiem Lake, Hanoi.

Hoan Kiem Lake, Hanoi.

Image of an old postcard of Hoan Kiem Lake, from a display of old photographs near the lake.

Image of an old postcard of Hoan Kiem Lake, from a display of old photographs near the lake.

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Phố Mã Mây, Quận Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội.

Old post card of Phố Mã Mây, Quận Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội.

Old post card of Phố Mã Mây, Quận Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội.

After completing the four-week CELTA course in Hanoi at the end of May, I spent several days in Cambodia, mostly at the beach in Sihanoukville. Yesterday I arrived in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. I spent a few hours at the Hojo tea shop in KL, where I tasted several teas, including a first flush Darjeeling and a Yunnan wild black tea, both of which I purchased. Tomorrow I will go to the Cameron Highlands where much of Malaysia’s tea is grown.

View of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, from my hotel room.

View of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, from my hotel room.

Hojo Tea Shop, at The Gardens Mall in Kuala Lumpur.

Hojo Tea Shop, at The Gardens Mall in Kuala Lumpur.

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