10 Foods I’m Going to Eat After Returning to Indonesia

Today I managed to get back my passport!~ Yay! Even though it’s still on special pass, and not my student visa! Damn EMGS, quickly process mine!

So, I decided to compile a list of foods that I’m going to eat when I’m going back!~

  1. First on the list is soto! My favourite Indonesian food! My mum called me this morning, and told me that 你後天回家可以吃到soto了 (meaning: When you come home the day after tomorrow, you can eat soto already). What is soto? Soto is yellow chicken soup, so basically the main ingredient is chicken, boiled with some spices that makes it “yellow”. Now, there are lots of different kinds of soto, and truthfully, I don’t know what’s the one that my family always cook. I like soto because it taste delicious and spicy, although the chilli is usually separated. I tried to cook soto once in Malaysia and I failed miserably!800px-Soto_ayam
  2. Sate, which is basically skewered meat, and is widely available in Indonesia, Singapore, and Malaysia. As a matter of fact, the most famous sate (referred as satay in Malaysia or Singapore) is in Kajang, which is very near my place. Truthfully, the sate in here is not as nice as the one in Indonesia. Our sate sauce is far more spicier than the one in Malaysia, and also our sate has the special Indonesian sweet soy sauce taste, where as the Malaysian version somehow feels like a sugary sweet taste. One thing different in our sate tradition is, in Indonesia, the merchant pour the sauce on top of the sate, where as in Malaysia, you dip the sate on the sauce. 14-sate babi
  3. Live seafood. The name is usually to refer seafood that are freshly made, live. There are lots of these kinds of restaurants in Batam. You walk in, see the fishes, pick your poison, and tell then how you want it cooked. Yes, fresh seafood is best seafood, and to make it fresh, you have to keep it alive until you’re going to eat it. I feel like eating salted egg crabs (although I don’t like eating crab, very inconvenient), sweet and sour deep fried fish, gong-gong (a kind of mollusc).Seafood-Restaurant-Batam
  4. Korean food. My favourite Korean food restaurant is in Batam! I usually hang out there with Edo and Peter, and also with Faldo and we ate, drank soju, basically we always eat there, and of course not missing the delicious grilled pork!20120611_202730
  5. Gado-gado! Who can not remember this nostalgic food! Indonesian version of salad. Vegetables all mixed together with tofu and noodles over a peanut sauce that is similar to sate sauce and topped with eggs and fried shallots!gadogado
  6. Mie pangsit, or locally known in my family as tamie (干面). This was one of my childhood favourite foods! I remember when I was still staying in Nagoya, the stall at the end of the road sell really delicious tamie. Until now, tamie is still my preferred breakfast food. Mi_ayam_pangsit_kuah
  7. Ayam penyet. Indonesia’s very own version of fried chicken, which hilariously, in English is called smashed chicken. Yes, the chicken is first smashed to make it soft and tender. It is very soft and tender comparing to western fried chicken. The chicken is not fried with batter, instead, it is fried with spices that makes it fragrant. It is served with fried tahu (tofu), tempe (soybean cake), and lalapan (raw vegetables), and also with the very spicy chilli. Here’s the challenge, usually me and my friend would challenge each other to see who can eat more chilli.04 Best Selling Nasi Ayam Penyet @ Nur Indah Kitchen [Bedok Corner Food Centre] (Large)
  8. Mie ayam, literally chicken noodles. It looks similar to tamie, but it is not tamie. I don’t know the difference, but it just taste different. In mie ayam, chicken will be put on top, while in tamie it’s usually shredded pork and grilled pork. Mie ayam is also more watery. Mi_ayam_jamur
  9. Nasi Padang. This is what 90% of the Indonesians really miss when they go abroad. Once, my cousin came back from the U.S. (note that he haven’t came back for 13 years), and the first thing he asked for is nasi Padang. That’s how addictive it is. It is basically rice mixed with any kind of dishes you like. The dishes are cooked Padang style, which is influenced by the Indians when they come to Indonesia to do trading. The main characteristic of Padang food is curry-full, spicy, and lots and lots of oil.Nasi_Kapau
  10. The last but not the least, ayam goreng cabe ijo! Literally translates to green chilli fried chicken. And true enough, it is fried chicken with green chilli. Distant relative of the ayam penyet, this is one best Indonesian food that I like.Ayam-goreng-cabe-ijo

Now, that’s all for my list! Maybe some of you may wonder why I didn’t include rendang. Well the reason is, I don’t eat beef — and most rendang are made out of beef. I do enjoy pork rendang, though, occasionally.

NOTE: All of these pictures are not mine, since I don’t have the pictures, so I just googled them.

Homeless in LCCT Kuala Lumpur (PART 1- Pre-departure)

Hey! I’m going back to Indonesia this Friday! I bought myself a cheap early morning flight, and I decided to challenge myself and try to sleep in the airport tomorrow (Thursday)! I’ll try to capture lots and lots of pictures, and maybe also videos!

I’m trying this because I have never slept at airports before, this will be my first, and I’m doing it because I’m running out of money challenging myself to try this experience!

I found a good website, and I have read lots of information from that website! If you’re considering to sleep in an airport, try to read that website!

So, here is my plan for tomorrow!

9.15: Take campus bus to Kajang KTM station (UNMC-Kajang KTM, approx. 45 minutes, free).

10:12: Take KTM to Terminal Bersepadu Selatan (TBS) (Kajang KTM-TBS KTM, approx. 16 minutes, RM 1.80).

10:28: Arrive in TBS, buy ticket for 3am bus to LCCT. Meanwhile, explore TBS. 

03.00: Depart for LCCT (approx. 75 minutes, RM 8.00)

04:15: Arrive LCCT, explore LCCT, find a little sleep, check in.

07.20: Flight back to Singapore

Wish me luck for tomorrow!~

3 Reasons Why I’m Planning to Leave Malaysia (and why you shouldn’t come on the first place)

As everyone know, September 2013 I moved to Malaysia to further continue my study. I enrolled in The University of Nottingham, Malaysia Campus (as I am writing this now from Malaysia). After staying here for more than a year, seeing all the “dark sides” of Malaysia, I decided to leave Malaysia for good (if my parents allow me).

Don’t get me wrong, Malaysian people are nice, and I’m not trying to generalize the whole Malaysia into the picture. Like any other places on earth, there is a good side and there will always be the bad side.

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So why did I even decide to come to Malaysia, you might ask. My struggle to university was long and hard (without the if you know what I mean face). I tried to look for a few universities, and at first I applied for INHolland Hogeschool in The Netherlands. I registered quite late, and I can’t make it for my student visa, and finally I dropped my application. My mum was also worried about this, and she went to ask the deity in Singapore (this may sound mystical, but I swear to God all the answers are pretty accurate), and the divination said that a “golden rooster” will guide me to success.

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Since I can’t go to The Netherlands, I tried to find other universities which are nearer, I considered Singapore and Malaysia. For Singapore, my grades are not enough for public universities, while private universities are okay, but it is still better to go to public universities. For Malaysia, I at first considered INTI, and Taylors. But one day, I was randomly browsing the Internet and found out about The University of Nottingham in Malaysia (from now thereon will be referred as UNMC). That was the first time I heard about this university as it was not so popular.

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Finally, I weighted my options, and actually I wanted to do a year of foundation, and then continue for my application in INHolland, but I don’t know why I didn’t registered there. Instead, I just continued getting my bachelors degree in here (maybe I didn’t want to leave my 韓妹 leave my friends).

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Maybe you guys are wondering, since I know Malaysia, I should have just chose Singapore because it is safer. Don’t get me wrong, even though I live quite near Malaysia, and yes, I am aware of the crime rate in Malaysia, I am not aware that the crime rate in Malaysia is more than what I know.

Here is my research from Numbeo, here is the crime rate map for the world, and Malaysia is almost unsafe as the US! Yes, the US is unsafe in some areas, whether you realise it or not!

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and let’s compare the crime rate in Indonesia and Malaysia

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and finally, here is the crime rate for Kuala Lumpur

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My second year in Malaysia. Elections just passed, and, coincidentally or not coincidentally, Malaysia suddenly looks like a messed up hell for me. New rules for visa (as if it’s not expensive enough!), petrol hike, electricity hike, everything also hike, including but not exclusively, crime rate.

I compiled why I plan to leave Malaysia, and it falls to these 3 points:

  1. Safety, the main concern now for all of the students. I can’t say for other universities, but for my university, UNMC, safety is a big issue, especially in the housing Taman Tasik Semenyih (from now thereon will be referred as TTS). What is TTS? No, not the trio sub-group of Girls’ Generation, or the Indonesian name for crosswords puzzle (Teka-Teki Silang) TTS is a housing around the area of the campus, where many students lived. I talked to my neighbour who has lived here for more than 10 years. According to this old couple, their house have been broke in more than 4 times over the period of around 10 years plus. Sweet niblets! (Hannah Montana style). I’ve been occupying my house in my home town for almost 14 years and not even a single break in! My friends who lived in TTS got broke in a few times; mostly on the summer. Since I love my laptop so much and don’t want it to be lost, I always carry around my laptop with me. Aside from break ins, there are also snatch thieves in TTS.  Recently, one of my Indonesian senior got snatched in the university bridge. On the bridge! There is a security post just before that and someone dare to snatch there! Another case was one of my friends’ housemate was walking, and a car pulled in, pulled the poor guy on to the car (yes, literally), took all his stuff, and drop him in a land far-far away. Holy Mother of God, I can’t even imagine it happening to me!
  2. Public Spaces, also related to safety. One of my friend was on his way back from the airport to campus, when suddenly someone grabbed his luggage to divert his attention, and the next thing he knows his brand new iPhone 5 is gone by the wind. I always have this feel that it is unsafe in public areas, such as the bus station, airports, or even the train terminal and the LRT/Monorail station!
  3. Visa issue! This is what’s hot now, starting from 2013, the government has implemented a new “privately owned” company (if you know what I mean), called EMGS, or Education Malaysia something something to “speed up” the process of this visa. In reality, not only it slows down the process, it also increases the cost of the student visa. Last year, extension only cost RM160, and this year, it cost almost RM2,000!

Now, do you still dare to come here to study? 😉