A Journey Through Time...
By: M Jeffri Razali

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Wednesday, 26-May-2004 00:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Faces Of Melaka XVIII - All In One

A Traditional Melaka Wedding Dais
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The best place to learn about the culture and architecture of all 13 States in Malaysia, without having to go to each of the individual State is definately at the Mini Malaysia Park. The park, which was first opened to the public in the 1980s, is one of the popular attractions in Melaka.

Here visitors will be able to witness for themselves the unique architectural splendour of all the 13 States in Malaysia. Replicas of traditional Malay houses, including the long houses which are popular among the natives of Sabah dan Sarawak, can be found here. To the untrained eyes, each of this house look almost the same. But they are not.

Each of the house differs and this is influenced greatly by their surroundings. For instance, the Sarawak longhouse, which is built on stilts and perched quite high from the ground, is built in such a way to prevent wild animals from entering the longhouses. This is so as most of these houses are located either on the fringe or within the thick Borneo jungle. In other words, each house is built to serve the local community and is full practicality. The best way to learn about the uniqueness of each house is by visiting and observing them for yourself.

The interior of these houses are also decorated in accordance with the culture of the respective states. Items like handicrafts, clothings and furniture can also be found inside all the houses, and this will give the visitors a clearer picture of how the locals live.

As for me...walking from one house to another, apart from enriching my knowledge about my own country, also provides me with the much needed exercise...

Tuesday, 25-May-2004 00:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Scenes Of Malaysian Life IV

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Malaysians love to eat...and I am not ashame to say that. Who doesn't anyway?

Being a country of diversed culture, Malaysia is indeed a food haven as you can find practically any kind of food here...be it local cuisines, western or culinary delights from all parts of the world. You name it, and more often than not, you will find it.

To me, the best place to savour the local delicacies is definately at the stalls, roadside stalls most of the time - provided of course they are clean. Personally speaking, upmarket restaurants is not the best place to savour the local delicacies as I feel that most of the food here are what they call "designer food" - something which has lost its originality.

The best way to learn about the local culture is to eat what the locals eat. And this is not at high class restaurant. - Celebrity chef Anthony Bordain in one of his series on Discovery Channel

Food seems to be the passion of Malaysians. No matter what time of the day it is, you will someone, somewhere, eating. Just look around and you will most definately find eateries and roadside stalls operating until the wee hours of the morning. Be it in a big metropolitan, a small town or even in the rural area.

Most of these stalls are safe really. But of course, self discretion is needed. Just look around and if it is clean, what the heck...just tuck in. Crossing a busy intersection is far more dangerous...

Monday, 24-May-2004 00:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Colours Of Malaysia III - The Precious Jewel

High Rise
Congestion Again
The Johor Baru Railway Station
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The transformation of modern Johor took place in the 19th century during the reign of Sultan Abu Bakar. He gave Johor the first constitution for a Malay state and introduced a proper system of administrative government and began Johor's drive toward stability and prosperity. In 1885, he was given official recognition as the Sultan of Johor by Queen Victoria and earned the title as 'the Father of Modern Johor'.

By virtue of its geographic position, Johor holds the inimitable distinction, logistically as being at the southermost tip of the Asian continent. Strategically significant, Johor is also at the southern tip of the Malaysian Peninsular, surrounded on three sides: to the west by the Straits of Malacca, to the east by the South China Sea and to the south by the Straits of Johor. The word Johor itself literally means 'precious jewel' and is taken from the Arabic word "Jauhar" showing the influence of the early Arab traders.

Today, Johor's capital, Johor Baru, is a bustling modern cosmopolitan, boasting both modern and colonial splendour. The existance of numerous colonial-era buildings in the capital clearly shows Johor Baru's glorious past. As the state capital, Johor Bahru is linked to Singapore by a causeway which was built in the 1920s. Following high demand and rapid development, a Second Link, from Gelang Patah to Tuas, was commissioned in 1998.

Looking around the modern city of Johor Baru, with skyscrappers dotting its skyline and old humble buildings serving as a remembrance of the bygone era, it is no wonder that Johor Baru and Johor were once considered as the precious jewel. Indeed they are still so.

For a brief history of Johor Baru, kindly refer to http://ambig.fotopages.com/?entry=108340&back=http://ambig.fotopages.com/?page=0

Sunday, 23-May-2004 00:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
Glorious Red Devils...Hell Freezes Over...!

Man United Vs Newcastle - 1999
Winners In 1999
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Glory glory Man United indeed...!

Sir Alex Ferguson and his boys proved to the world again that Man United is a team to be reckoned with, no matter how bad their performance may be in the league. By virtue of their 3-0 win over Millwall, Man United has won the FA Cup, the world’s oldest national Cup competition which was first played in 1871, for a record 11 times.

This year's win, although the only silverware for the illustrious club, was important as it is the first time Man United has won the FA Cup in the 2000s, after having won it for the last time during the 1998/1999 season when they defeated Newcastle United in the finals. For the record, Man United had made it to 16 finals, including today's, where they had won the cup 10 times and emerged runners-up on five other occassions.

Man United's affair with the FA Cup started in 1890 when it participated as Newton Heath. They had also achieved a unique record of being the only club to appear in an FA Cup final in every decade since the war.

Its first win in the competition was in 1909 against Bristol City. The Red Devils had to wait until 1948 to reach another final when they beat Blackpool at Wembley stadium. They also appeared in consecutive finals in 1957 and 1958.

United next won the FA Cup in 1963 after defeating Leicester City. The late 1970s saw the club reached three finals in four years, losing to Southampton in 1976, beating Liverpool in 1977 and losing an epic final to Arsenal in 1979. Two more successes followed, against Brighton in 1983 and against Everton in 1985. In the 1990s, Man United reached no less than five finals, winning four of them.

In 1990, they beat Crystal Palace 1-0 after a replay, in 1994 and 1996 the club completed the ‘Double’ after wins against Chelsea and Liverpool respectively, and in 1999 United completed the second part of a historic ‘Treble’ with a 2-0 win over Newcastle.

Their win tonight over Millwall had kept alive their record of being the only club to appear in an FA Cup final in every decade since the war. Although the win came almost five years after their last win, it nevertheless, will not be the last for Man United. You can bet your bottom dollar on that...!

Pix: BBC Sports

Saturday, 22-May-2004 00:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
To Eat Or Not To Eat...That Is The Question

Can We Have Some Service Pls?
Dieticians...Eat Your Heart Out...!
At Least Fast Food Brings Family Together
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McD here we come...! But of course, you risk having dieticians scream for your blood.

This is especially so as many of them (dieticians I mean) hold the impression that fast food will make you obese (in other words, FAT!). Speaking of obesity, a survey conducted by Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (Malaysia National University) on 12,000 primary school children in Peninsular Malaysia found that 10.5 per cent of them were overweight and six per cent were obese.

Fifteen per cent of 12,000 Malaysian children are eating fast food every day and this is said to be contributing to the increasing obesity among today's children.

I will have to disagree if one says that the only way to beat the bulge is to stay away from fast food or junk food. Moderation is still the best way. Eat what you want to eat but moderately. And of course...exercise. Do you know that walking is the simplest form of exercise?

I guess I will have a Big Mac, a large fries and a large Coke while I contemplate what these dieticians are saying. Bon apetite...

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