This is part Four of our 2016 Asia Summer Trip Report. Many pics from a huge family gathering in Sitiawan, Malaysia. One more you guys, hang in there, it is almost over!
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See Part One: Travel Hacking Totals and Japan Airlines Business Class Dallas DFW – Tokyo Narita NRT
See Part Two: Conrad Tokyo and Exploring Tokyo
See Part Three: Hong Kong for a Day With Son
See Part Five: Kuala Lumpur Doubletree & Korean Delta Business Class Flights
Our Air Asia flight from Hong Kong to Kuala Lumpur was uneventful. We had some food with us as I decided not to risk ordering ahead of time any food entries aboard. I must admit the choices we saw others eat look decent and the prices were very reasonable. Oh well, next time I guess. So far every flight we had with Air Asia was a good experience. Hope the streak continues!
Hello Kuala Lumpur Airport, we meet again!
This is a really nice airport, very impressed by Malaysia. Again.Due to some scheduling conflicts that arose just before we left, we would need to get to Sitiawan, 240 kms north of Kuala Lumpur, that night to be able to make it to the huge family gathering the next day to celebrate my parent in laws’ 80th birthday. So, they arranged a driver to take us straight to Sitiawan. He did not speak any English but found us in the arrivals area. Nice fellow, did not speak much. Definitely not a Mercedes like some of you may be accustomed to at some airports flying First Class and all…The ride was nice. Looks like the country has been upgraded again. It amazes how much progress has been here while Greece, with all its natural beauty, sometimes it feels like it is regressing instead!I remember the first time I visited Sitiawan. We stayed at great grandma’s old house, the matriarch of this large clan. Only one room had A/C. And it was very old. I still have nightmares about it. She passed away since then and there is another relative living there now, I can’t believe it is still standing! The relatives who live here now have all moved to very nice houses in new subdivisions. I think we filled three of their houses. Here are all the nephews and nieces. My wife has six other siblings, one brother in New Jersey, two brothers in Malaysia and three sisters living in Singapore. Of course, eating is a big part of the culture. Lets go out to eat! I love these old style Chinese restaurants here!Supposedly, this dude is famous in cooking noodles in some old authentic style. They did taste yummy!And next morning, the marathon celebration started with a giant buffet
And after that we visited some graves of relatives in the town cemetery. Paid respects to the matriarch, thank god for the wifi, we were connected at all times, tethering unlimited data plan from a brother in law, thanks Bro!This is the old house where great grandmother lived. My wife spent her school years here. I was first here in 1995 during Chinese New Year, I thought I was under bombardment from all the firecrackers, without air conditioning. Needless to say, since then Sitiawan was associated with not great memories. When I heard we are not going to stay here, I cried from happiness! And then we started visiting some temples
No TBB groupies here #sosad I was given these things I am holding. We then copied what my wife did. There are no videos of this, good! Hey, I do what I am told. Ok, now, it’s really hot out here, can we get to the dinner please!Bad ass
Pic from the top of the temple, old style houses
There are several new temples here.
Diversity!All the kids rented this banquet hall for the mega dinner celebration. Yes, I am the only white guy, lol. I will let the pictures speak for themselves.
The inlaws walk in, holding hands. The room erupts. Well, not really. But their heartfelt appreciation was evident, they have done well.Brother in law…from New Jersey.All the grandkids, I think it’s eighteen, I lost count!Not a huge beer fan but I drunk that night, it tasted pretty good!10 course meal, it was epic! I should have taken more pics of the dishes but I was busy!Karaoke time, the two American grandkids under the influence lol. Good to see our friends, the couple to the left, they used to live in Ann Arbor but moved to Penang a few years ago.
Can I see some ID? Nah, screw it, go for it!And the obligatory family pics follow. Parents with the families of their three boys.
With their 7 children and their spouses.
All right, can’t keep up. Relatives!
I don’t know who she is, relative who wanted a picture with my daughter so badly.
Thought about giving them a few credit cards to model Emily style but I came to my senses…
Ok, I think the number of the grandkids are 19. 16 of them are here, three youngest had left, it was pretty late by this time.Next morning breakfast, Needless to say, there was no gym nearby 🙂 Love this type of noodles!Love these old style restaurants. Did I say that already?The grandkids don’t get together much, so they really enjoyed hanging out. I went for a nap.
Good to pretend you are popular, it helps my self-esteem. Actually, I am so tired writing this trip report. I can use a break!More temple visits followed, this is a really big one!
And then we were off back to hometown Raub. Nice ride through the country side. We stopped at this restaurant to eat. Yeah, we ate a lot while here, you may have noticed? We stayed at the house of one of my wife’s brothers who built a second home here (they live in Kuala Lumpur). Apparently, this small village has also grown a lot. Many KL city residents escape here in the weekends for its elevation, clean air and authentic old style restaurants. After getting settled in, we went out to an outdoor market. Next morning breakfastThis dish was amazing! Yeah, just 5 Malaysian Ringgit. Which is $1.16 #wow. Madame Wong’s Noodle Stand. THE BEST! They made me stop at this roadside vendor, I did not want to. Yeah, this is the “king of fruit”. Durian. The most horrible fruit you will ever smell and taste. But some people like it. Like my wife and son. My daughter does not like it. I absolutely hate it. First time I came in encounter with it, I thought there was a dog corpse nearby, no kidding!3 generations here. Son messing with me, telling me how good it is. I wanted to kick his ass so bad!After dropping off grandma to her home in Raub and saying our goodbyes, we were off to Kuala Lumpur. We had one of the KL based brother’s car with us, so nice.
Next and final part will take us to Kuala Lumpur, staying at the Doubletree hotel and then my flights back on Korean Air to Seoul and Delta to Detroit. Business Class. It’s almost over…at last!
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Good memories to share.
Hours spent on doing this were hours spent with no integrity whatsoever 😉
Your transparency is a guarantee. As you know, that is so rare.
Isn’t it amazing how different views there are of me from some readers? I AM the same person.
And this dear readers…it’s da internet 🙂
I’m jealous, my in-laws are just in the same boring-ass small town in Ohio that I came from! No adventures going to any reunions!
Food all looks delicious there!
The food is my favorite part visiting there. By far!
Ohio? On top of the “boring”, you probably have to deal with the in-your-face politics of everyone there—unless, of course, you are pro-Trump and in that case, it’s a slice of GodsLand (or, as Dans Deal s would have it, G*dsLand)
you must not know Ohio very well
You are right, I don’t know it “very” well. But I know that the people in some of the small towns are bread-and-butter religious and Trumpsters. And I can relate to being the odd man out with the relatives at those family dinners.
SumOfAll, did you have anything to add?
SumOfAll has this to add:
All around me they are clicking on Titan links. I keep telling them to stop. They think I am weird.
Some who generalizes incorrectly about their perceived notion of Ohio and they ask me if I have something to add? I love Buzz but I have a personal motto of not clicking on CC links. I think you have the utmost integrity and seem like a genuine guy. However I cant help you by clicking on CC links. Sorry.
Okay, confirmed: you have nothing to add. I bet you’ve never even been to Ohio but go ahead and keep on trolling!
So you want to consume and add nothing at all in terms of production, maybe take advantage of a loophole you learned about on mms and then complain that the blogs ruined your deal.
Brenton and Bluecat (among many other loyal supporters), when my site gets bought out for multi millions I will remember you 🙂
Advice: Stay alive…because it may take a while…Oh wait, maybe this is SumOfAll’s strategy to keep me blogging? oh oh…
Anyways, good post tomorrow…I am getting my edge back.
Relative is responding to some commands at the hospital…Which is a good sign but still too early
Some of you guys are miserable. Wow. I dont click on CC links. Who knew it would send some into a frenzy of name calling. I like Buzz and the site. Try not to get so angry when someone is different than you are. Last time I checked , the site is free and Buzz adds his commentary and I read it. Where is the problem?
I’d be careful not to over-generalize. There is a fairly even split in my home county and honestly most folks don’t get too extreme in politics – similar to other aspects of life in many rural small towns the “moderation in all things” view of life tends to prevail. With the families that have deep roots there most simply carry on their family’s customer party vote…the teenagers go through their “change the world” phase like everyone of course. Local election issues (tax levies, mayor, etc.) tend to get people talking more than national ones – many local candidates run as non-partisans. The Republican and Democrat party booths at the county fair are staffed by people who are all friendly to one another regardless of who is running. Once in awhile a few Libertarians try to get some traction but usually fizzle out. Many of the older generations see it as crass to bring up politics outside of close friends or family and even then not that much.
I guess I’m saying while there are obviously some “true believers” on either side, it’s really not this caricature that the media and many people paint of rural Midwestern life.
My parents and brother (my only real family left at this point) are die hard Democrats, dad is the county party chairman or something. Except for my paternal grandfather I don’t know that my grandparents or great-aunts/uncles ever talked about politics – I really have no idea what most of them were. My in-laws aren’t very political – nominally Republican out of habit but none were Trump supporters – not sure they all even cast a vote for President this time, but I never asked.
I’m sincerely apolitical. I had an epiphany one time while on a trip several years ago and realized it’s all useless in the grand scheme of the universe – much like most aspects of our lives that we think are so terribly critical in the moment. So I’ve checked out of the system entirely and other than what I happen to see and hear, I don’t follow any of it. Before that point I voted for whoever I thought was best – could have been Republican, Democrat, Libertarian, or whatever. It’s very liberating to not give a shit about not only politics but so many other fleeting things in this life.
*”customary party vote” above – not “customer party” I can’t type
I think you have summed it up very well!
I always vote. For the one who will hurt me less.
I still regret the wasted vote on Nader because I did not like vote. Thankfully, it did not matter in Michigan. I could not live with myself if I helped elect George W Bush. Who looks like a genius compared to Trump lol.
I have clients in Columbus. They love it there.
Looks like the Hyatt credit card is pumped in the blogs. It is available here too!
Look for a prepaid card (from Netspend of all places) to earn United miles. Interesting…
Hey, do the kids speak Malay? (or whatever is the language…yeah, I’m ignorant) Or does everyone else there switch to English for them?
What about for you? Do you sit and nod and smile at the tables with the older relatives? I can picture that!
Son probably eats the durian just to get on mom’s good side. I recognize that trick.
No Malay for the kids.
Yes, all kids switch to English when they talk to my kids. They almost all speak it.
I nod and smile all the time when around the older folks. Usually with my mouth full of some delicious food.
Son really likes durian. And he messes with me.
Did you get the kids to learn any Greek?
Yes, both kids did 6 years of Greek school. Which was once a week so not intensive at all. My son still understands a lot but has been losing it. Daughter was never into it, knows just the basics.
Did Dan;s Deals buy stock in Amazon or something? The only ones happy about all his Amazon posts are the women in India who subscribe to his deals Twitter feed and have their Nokias set to vibrate….
(Virtual HT: Ramsey)
I think I posted the Nokia/Vibrators/India connection link some time ago. Or I certainly considered it. I have the sex toy/robot market down…If only they would stop pleasuring themselves to click on a few of my links woohoo!
Yeah, I guess you did post that. Ha…I think of Ramsey when it’s sufficiently weird….
Well, it did not take long for One Credit Card at a Time to write about the United/Netspend deal…He HTed (way at the bottom where nobody sees it) some Brad dude while he basically managed to rewrite the press release in his “own” words lol. Bravo 🙂
At least he’s consistent in being a douche
Sad Clown George says
omat aka one credit card at a time is bad. but george you just tried to get clicks on your links in the last 24 hours dude. your 2 dozen blind & dumb followers don’t change the facts. omat might be a consistent douche but so are you. poor wife of yours who has to try to argue with a stubborn person like you.
SumOfAll: I don’t click on bloggers’ links. Where is the problem?
Look at the dwindling list of the TBB Blogs To Like…
And see all the commercial success of the Titans…
YOU are part of the problem.
Enjoy free loading dude.
going back to the Cavs Celtics game now!
you’re part of the problem actually. you beg for clicks worse than some bloggers you hate on.
hate to break this news to you dad but the reason people ask about your kids is because your daughter is very attractive. men aren’t complicated.
Fantastic trip report George! This may be the very best one you’ve written. At least the best one I’ve enjoyed reading so far.
Durian grows on you. Eventually you’ll love it so much you can’t get enough of it. Just…give in…! 🙂 My wife, a German American, liked it the first time she tried. The trick? Eat it frozen.
Thank you for the kind words.
As far as Durian goes…it will NEVER grow on me. I really can’t stand being it, no other food affects me that strongly. By far!