The impromptu Kuching trip

So, I’m now in Kuching with Nanny Wen, having been invited quite last minute to accompany her on this 2D1N trip.

I hardly had time to prepare for it, so all I did was throw together a few things and then I was out the door.

Going to Kuching

We had to buy air tickets at the airport at 8 am. Wen was supposed to buy them the night before, but she showed up only after the sales counter had closed.

We took AirAsia because it has the only flight to Kuching today. As budget airlines go, I prefer JetStar. It seems to be cheaper and it’s more comfortable.

For hotel, Nanny Wen booked Tune Hotel. Its a no-frills budget hotel where you pay for only what you use. We had to bring our own towels and soap.

Tune Hotel

Even the aircon is chargeable.

The bill comes to RM106.95 after service and taxes. Pretty decent for a double bed, I suppose.

Nanny Wen plonked herself on the bed the moment we arrived, to get her Blackberry connected.

Tune Hotel

That was when we realised that the RM12 we paid for wireless access only allowed one machine to access. We had to pay another RM12 for the other person.

Anyway, it’s fine. We’re both now happily stuck to our respective laptops after a tiring day of shopping.

Our shopping

We didn’t think we’d actually end up buying stuff.

We took a cab to The Spring, currently Kuching’s biggest shopping mall, because we’ve been to Kuching before and have already seen all the touristy stuff.

I guess I tend to buy more stuff when I’m overseas because I feel more relaxed and in the mood.

Shopping in Kuching

In Singapore, I’m always plagued by the feeling that I should be going home to work and I don’t have time to shop.

Before The Spring, we went to this tiny mall called Tun Jugah because it’s a few minutes’ walk from our hotel. But the mall is CMI. It has three floors and like 6-8 stores on each floor.

The only store of interest was FILA because I needed a pair of black sneakers. I saw three things I liked but they didn’t have my size boohoo.

But Nanny Wen bought something and she kept blaming me for dragging her into the store.

Nanny Wen buying shoes

Lunch was Sarawak Laksa and Kuching Kolo Mee. We just walked into a coffee shop randomly and it was nice!

Kuching Kolo Mee

Dinner was silly. We decided to eat in our room so we ordered takeaway from nearby hawker stalls.

Nanny Wen and her dinner

Sheylara and her dinner

I have this funny smile cos I have food in my mouth.

Feeling nice and cosy now. We went for a massage after shopping, before coming back with our dinner.

I think we were quite brave. There was a dodgy-looking building behind our hotel which has only one shop open at the time we went (around 6 pm).

Massage parlour

It was a massage parlour called Eroma. I forgot to take a photo at the shopfront but it’s all curtained up so you can’t see the inside of it. But Nanny Wen was dying for a massage so we went in.

We had spent most our money on shopping so we only had enough left for a 30-minute massage each. It was pretty awesome, actually.

My masseur’s phone rang halfway through the session and she actually picked it up and started talking. Then she kiap-ed her phone to her shoulder and continued to massage me while she talked, wtf.

She was speaking in Malay so I didn’t know what she said. Luckily the phone call only lasted a minute or so.

But her massaging skills are great so I forgive her.

It’s now two hours after the massage and I am beginning to feel the aches kicking in again after hunching over my laptop for the last two hours. Doh.

Sheylara on laptop

So, I’m going to stop here and probably go take a shower and then go to bed. I’m so sleepy. Only slept three hours last night!

And Wen is forcing me to upload my blog now so she can read it. She’s such a tyrant.

If there are any typos in this post, it’s her fault!

Sheylara and Nanny Wen

Must-try Sarawak Laksa and Kuching Kolo Mee

I shall be supremely evil today and tempt you with food that you can’t get in Singapore.

Heh.

Sarawak laksa

This is a very fine specimen of Sarawak Laksa which I had the chance to try when I was in Kuching a few months ago.

It’s so awesome my tummy salivates even when I think about it now.

I mean, seriously, I would fly to Kuching just to eat this again.

Malcolm, our unofficial guide, brought us to this place called Tiang’s Cafe, which is a humble but extremely famous coffee shop.

Tiang's Cafe

It’s famous for its Sarawak Laksa, among other things.

Sarawak laksa

Ahhhhhh drool.

Barrett Tan, the owner, produces his own laksa paste, a secret recipe handed down by his father. The paste is even manufactured commercially.

We were given some packets to take home! (Unfortunately, I don’t cook, so I gave them to my dad and the Goonfather’s mum.)

Sarawak laksa paste

Barrett’s a really friendly fella.

He served us so much food that we couldn’t finish everything. Here’s a picture of him (right) talking to Malcolm:

Barrett Tan

They’re good friends, apparently!

Besides the Sarawak Laksa, another must-try is the Kolo Mee.

Kolo Mee

The ingredients come in such generous portions and the taste is totally to-die-for. I really wish I had a bigger stomach that day.

Another favourite is the prawn mee, but I think that one is an acquired taste. The prawn paste flavour is so strong that the soup becomes bitter. I don’t like so much.

Prawn Mee

But it sure looks appetising, nevertheless.

Barrett even surprised us with Kueh Lapis (called Kek Lapis in Sarawak).

Kek Lapis

That was really too much! Dessert at breakfast? I was totally bursting by then but I managed to take a few bites. It was buttery, moist, soft, awwwww.

Well, there you go. How’s that for a Sunday morning post? =P

If you ever have the chance to visit Kuching, you MUST at all cost visit Tiang’s Cafe and try the Sarawak Laksa, if not the Kolo Mee. Bring a very empty stomach.

It’s, like, about RM4 (S$1.65) per bowl so you can afford to order everything to try!

Here’s Barrett’s website if you want to find out more about Sarawak Laksa and his famous secret laksa paste.

Tiang’s Cafe
No 22, Lot 2354,
Block 10 KCLD,
Jln Tun Ahmad Zaidi Adruce,
93150 Kuching