Thailand Trip 2015 [THROWBACK]

Thailand Trip 2015 [THROWBACK]

   As everyone was busy preparing for Chinese New year that year, I finally got the opportunity to travel to Thailand for a week, alone. Getting a day off from my work was difficult as the office was busy in the previous year. The only way to take a long leave is by waiting for this kind of public holiday and luckily Malaysia has tons of it.

   My first choice was to travel to Hong Kong or Taiwan but luckily Zhuang Wu Bin told me that he will be involved in Chiang Mai very first photo festival as a curator. Chiang Mai is one of the states in Thailand and when he told me that it will be cheap and fun to go there by train, I was basically convinced.

   To begin with, I really didn’t do much study on Thailand or Bangkok before going there. The only thing that I prepared was some map that I photocopy from Lonely Planet book and the train ticket that Wu Bin send to me from Chiang Mai.

   To be honest, I did study the interesting place to visit in Bangkok but none of it seems to be that interesting. So I decided to skip all the famous tourist spot and instead, take my own time walking around the city at my own convenience. But I really do wanna visit the famous (infamous?) Thailand Go-Go Bar.

From Labuan to Kuala Lumpur to Bangkok. That girl was not waving toward someone. 
Arrived at Dong Mueng Airport. 
My first impression of Thailand. 
A 20 minutes ride to my hostel. The driver was friendly though. 
22km ride per litre of fuel. Impressive. 
One of the cat in the hostel. 

   When I arrive at my hostel, I was hungry. 7Eleven was everywhere but the sandwich price is ridiculous when I convert it. So I decided to eat the local food which is Sticky Rice with Spicy mango and sliced beef. It was good but extremely spicy.

I thought this dog was a rag. 
First food in Thailand. 
See how impressive the ingredient is, and the amount of Chili. 
They have different menu in the morning. 

My train was in the evening around 6pm so I have plenty of time to explore the Chinatown. I notice on the map that there is some temple near the area so there I go.

Jaywalking in Bangkok. 
Better than Penang mural art. 
You can tell that you are in Thailand. 
Since I was staying in Chinatown, the place is full of Thailand Chinese. This scene feels like Kuala Lumpur petaling street. 
I still feel like I was in Petaling Street. 
This is so KL. 
Not sure if its a missing person poster, or a congratulatory poster.  
The temple is stunning. 
The temple is famous for it Golden coated buddha statue. This three statue is not it. 
This is the real Gold coated buddha statue. 
I find the texture interesting. I believe that is a mercedes benz. 
Street of Bangkok. 
Crossing the road. 
On the way to train station. 
This is my platform according to my ticket. 
I love the light here. 
People waiting for their train. 
That is my only bag that I bring along for the trip. 
Family from French. 
My food for all my train ride in Thailand. 
A group of Germans. 
This is my bunk bed. 

  The experience in waking up inside a moving train in the morning was surprisingly pleasant. It was cold but not noisy, it was shaky but not horribly shaken. Overall, it was just like another day in the morning except that you need to wash your head/face in the small train toilet.

Brushing my teeth in front of this guy. 
That is the logo for Thailand Railway. 
Early morning with instant coffee. He like it. 
My ride to Chiang Mai University. 
On the way. 
Chiang Mai street food. 
This is the Main entrance for Chiang Mai University. 
My ride for the day. 
Peacock for a pet. Saw this at WuBin place. 
A home for the god. 
It is actually pretty cold despite the picture. Temperature is around 28 degree celcius. 
Community store. Check out the design.
Its not just a store selling local products but also house a coffee shop. 
Apparently the university is organizing some sort of a events for the students. Its big. 
One of the reason for me to visit Chiang Mai. 


   The whole point of the trip was to actually learn and observe new photography material and culture from South East Asia. Seeing first hand on how they organize a photo festival from a real photography and art curator perspective was the ideal timing for as I was at that time involved in a way in organizing a Photo Festival in Sabah. Which is successfully organized by my friend, do check the festival out,


This was a selected work from Asean brightest young photographer. 


This was a selected picture from Korea and Hong Kong (I think) 




This was interesting. I believe you do a google search about the writing. The work selected here is curated by Zhuang Wu Bin.


Geric Cruz work from Philippines. 
This series was taken with Holga. 
Documenting the rubber industry in Thailand (or was it Cambodia) 
Awesome series. 
This series was awesome as well. Not sure about the subject but was it border patrol or prison guard. 
Mr Zhuang Wu Bin took a rest while overlooking the exhibit. This was taken before the opening tomorow. 
I got the tote bag though. 


   The exhibition was simply mind blowing. The image showcased in the exhibition is very impressive and I was lucky that WuBin was there explaining stuff around regarding those pictures he curated. Afterward I believe we went around and went on to welcome one of Wu Bin acquaintance from Indonesia, Deden Durahman.


This was some bakery selling organic bread and drinks. 
Zhuang Wu Bin work on the Chinese in South East Asia. 
Always put your awesome printed picture in Hahnemuhle paper and put it in a tin box. 
Dinner with Pak Deden and Kak Rita.
This is some serious talk. I couldnt keep up as it was too deep. 

My second morning in Chiang Mai was spent cycling around the old city area, which is basically in the middle of Chiang Mai. I also notice that it is very difficult to find public toilet in Chiang Mai, not to mention a thrash can.

You know the love their king. 
Part of the old city wall. 
Check out my bicycle. 
Morning Yoga. 
Yoga seems like a good activity to do here in this park. 
Opening of the Chiang Mai House of Photography. 


Not many people know how to use apple product. 


I still want this cap. 
Admiring the architecture. 


Teacher Kui showing me around that day. 


One of the many events that day. This one is the open public talk featuring Benz Thanachart. He was famous recently for taking picture inside a train for screaming random words. 
Apparently, he is also famous among the youth. Those line there is all his fan waiting to have a sign on their book. Equivalent to Malaysian Matlufthi. 
Deden Durahman told me that “In order for a photograph to exist longer in this world, you need to pair it with a writings. Which this guy has actually done.”
Would buy if this book is translated into English. 
They are buying some wines for tonight!. 
Leading the way. 
An opening to one of the photography student exhibition. 
This series was about Equality I believe. 
He was more into street fashion shooting. 
A friend was giving her some flower, I just took a picture. 
Her series is probably the most honest of all during the exhibition. Its about her relationship with her dog. She explain to me in fluent english and I think she thought I was someone important as I was tagging along with their lecturer and their quest. 


And the say Malaysia censorship is the worst. 


I learn how to differentiate different types of wine that night. 
Last picture for the night. This guy is all lecturers for Chiang Mai University. 

   And after the last picture, I was drunk as hell and probably embarassing myself by talking something unrelated to their topic. Went to WuBin place to get my bicycle and there I go cycle back to my hotel which is half an hour from his place.

For the first time in my life, I am cycling drunk alone in a foreign city in a cold 24 degree celcius weather. Safe to say that I arrive safely but of course, by taking some wrong turn along the way.

The next morning I decided to went back to Bangkok, I took some breakfast with Wu Bin and say goodbye to my host. It was a great experience overall.

Short meet-up. Still like the cap. 


Chiang Mai train station. 


You can tell that they are locals. 


Sink for the entire cabin. 


F/22 and be there. 
This was the restaurant. They say the coffee was good but I havent try it.
And this was probably the most interesting experience during my 1 week trip in Thailand. I forgot his name but he really loves everything about America. We start our conversation regarding his burger and how the American burger was the best. 
Apparently he also have some deep interest in Cowboy culture and somehow has a theme park or hotel that is full of cowboy stuff. He gave me a brochure to his place but I seem to misplaced it. 
He was showing his ring and hats. 
And he somehow met his old friend. 
This guy. 
They were speaking in Thai so I dont really understand but he was actually wanted to show him his new charm to his friend. 
Apparently he got it recently from a temple in Chiang Mai and then pass it to me to have a look. 
He also told me that the wood is  carved by an expert craftsmen to create that buddha charm which then he covered in epoxy. 
Kinda surprised when he pull out that magnifying thingy. 
An an agreement was made. Although I believe he just gave it to his old friend. 
The conductor decided to join their talk. 
Apparently this guy wearing the flowery t-shirt is a retired train conductor of the exact train that I was riding. Those two girls was actually his juniors before he retired recently. 
I have no idea what it was. All I can do is smile and laugh. 
Before going to bed, I say good night to the uncle. After that, he gave me this piece of wood that he used to make his charm. It smells good and told me that it was the same wood that people used to make incense. He told me to find a good craftsman and make something out of it according to my zodiac. I still keep it inside my bag to this day. 

Woking up in the morning made me realize that I missed Chiang Mai cold winter season weather (they call it winter but they also say the summer season is hell). So as I arrived in Bangkok, I decided to walk all the way to my new hostel. It was stupid as I ended up getting lost for 2 hour before actually reaching my hostel. My internet data was lousy and I couldn’t read Thailand.


She havent shower since yesterday. 


Early morning and people went to work. 
I like the color here. 
Thailand have some issue regarding electrical wire management. 
Street of Bangkok. 
In front of Bangkok Art Museum. 
Shopping mall in Bangkok is so advance that they have showroom selling Bentley, Roll Royce, Lamborghini and even porsche inside their shopping mall. 


A decent lunch. 
The american lady that really like to look down on Asian. She say her jewelry is confiscated after arrived in Thailand which makes no sense. 
Near the Stadium. 

I was really hoping to visit one of the closest Go-Go bar but after walking non-stop since morning, I was basically exhausted. I slept early around 9pm and ended up waking up in the morning, just in time for check out and took a taxi to the airport.

Thailand taxi driver is very friendly. All smile. 
Exchanging my leftover Baht. 
Good bye Thailand. It was nice. 

   After my Thailand trip, I was planning to save up some money for a trip to Japan. But opportunity shows up and I went to continue my study in Penang. What I learn from the trip was humility in general. Thailand people are surprisingly friendly and somehow resilience in nature. We could learn a lot from them, just check out their creative talent, they are amazing.




   Its been a few years since I continued my studies in Penang. While the Island has changed in many way since my last visit many years before. The underlying culture that makes Penang interesting remained the same.

As the title suggest, this series is mainly just an observation on the place that I have visited around Penang island and in no other way were it meant as a reference towards the Island as a whole. In the recent year, the Island has been promoted intensively as a street food heaven by the local government and with their successful bid in making their city area a UNESCO Heritage site, the Island has been striving with tourism investment.

Murals are everywhere. They even have a printed guide that you can pick up from the airport and hotels. 

Going around the town shows tons of murals made by local and foreign artist and this itself was created under the government initiatives of promoting Penang as an Art and Cultural hub in the country. Obviously, this bring tons of cultural events that has attract the attention of the international community.

The street is not as hectic as Kuala Lumpur but its still relatively busy in view. 

But, despite all this, the island still retain its cultural value pretty well despite the rapid urbanization that is ongoing throughout the island. Exploring the small detail of the island will still surprised some seasoned traveler I believe.

Stuff that you will find around the alley of the Georgetown shophouses. 
An offering to the god/deities I believe. 
Penang beloved Chief Minister. Symbol of Penang.

   Although Penang is majority occupied by the Bumiputera, the Island town area is predominantly Chinese and Indian Muslim. This can be seen on the daily activities and the annual celebration held throughout the year. The street would be filled with offerings and road are sometimes closed for this special occasion. Still its a sight to experience yourself.

I forgot what they call this but its literally everywhere during certain season of the years. 
Sending offering to the deities. 
At Kek Lok Si temple. 
Fun park somewhere around Queensbay mall. 
Fishing near the first Penang bridge. 

FOR 2018

FOR 2018

   2017 has been that kind of year where you had been trying out many different thing but in the end it didn’t left you with much. It left me a bit unorganized and unprepared for the next venture but hell was it fun. By the end of the year, I notice that all this small tryout has somehow made me understand what I need to focus on more in 2018, whether its photography or architecture.

RE 03
We need to be very ‘extra’ in everything this year. 

As for this year planning, I personally set to end one of my photography project if possible and preparing my own architecture portfolio before continuing my master study. It will remained to be seen if any of this will materialize but finger cross.

In the mean time, I need to get myself a new DSLR soon and I am also selling some of my ‘excess’ photography equipment on carousell, do check it out here -> Kelvin carousell profile.

RE 02
With love. 

   For 2018, it’s probably the right time to appreciate those people that are close to you and treat them better in some sort. If possible, I would like to give advice to those that are younger than me that the final year of your study is just the beginning in the pursue of many thing. Life is rough and it is never is a fairytale.

I am hoping for another great year in 2018.


FROG HILL, Penang Mainland

FROG HILL, Penang Mainland
Hair flippin before taking instagram worthy picture. 

   I believe it’s been a few months since we went out together while visiting some new places with our cameras. Studio projects and random assignment has kept us busy over the past few weeks in which I believe are heard from time to time again in this blog.

Last year we did plan to visit this old abandoned mining place at mainland Penang as she has been there with her friends and calling it a ‘beautiful’ place with ‘blue’ colored pond. True to her word, a random google search proves that it is indeed a beautiful location but I couldn’t find any clue on why it’s called Frog hill, the actual hill doesn’t even look like a frog in the slightest.

So chances came by when we happen to source our timber material for a project over at Penang mainland in which Frog Hill is only half an hour away from the shop that we were about to visit. Since we did plan to visit the place before, its a quick decision to drive straight to the area. (We got lost, thanks to a Pak Cik for the direction)

If you are wondering where is this place, I suggest you google it yourself. This blogpost (or this blog) is never about the place but more on my personal visual experience organized into a blogpost.

I think she was saying why do we need to climb this hill. 
RE 12
She were complaining that the surface is slippery as well. 
And this one is about the rock being sharp. 

   Finding the area is a bit difficult but I leave the fun to you guys if you happen to be visiting that place. The road leading to the site is covered in red colored soil and it will soon lead you to one of the nicest man-made landscape that you can find in Penang (not the Island).

Climbing it is not as difficult as shown in the picture, any decent human capable of taking 2 flight of staircase would survive the climb easily. The only concern is whether you are able to hold the urge to dive straight into the crystal clear water that surround the area. But from what I heard, the water is unsafe for your skin due to the high level of alkaline. (which I highly doubt)

This one is for instagram. In celebrating that small climb I suppose. 

The landscape is pure eye candy and luckily the weather is slightly cloudy which is nice. With the pond crystal clear with slight green tint and a rather awesome rocky landscape, Its only a matter of time before someone close it from the public.


Just imagine that the dark part is green and the shiny area is tinted blue. 
An attempt to admire the detail of the landscape. 
Someday I gonna go down there exploring the area with a tripod in hand. 

  We spent about an hour and a half but most of the time was spent sitting down admiring the landscape while having some silly talk. Its a very secluded area with rarely anyone passing by. But still there was a few visitor who came to the hill and taking some picture before they left.

The only steep part that we need to climb to get the highest vantage point possible.
Our car and the landscape. With tiny human for scale. 

Overall, it was a great experience. The place is beautiful and hopefully will be preserve well for the future. The only regret is that I dont have any black and white film for my Leica hence this series of picture in monochrome taken using my girlfriend Nikon.


For more information about this place, just google. Its worth it.

Queen of the world

FUJIFILM XT20 – An hour with XT20

FUJIFILM XT20 – An hour with XT20

I rarely had the urge to write something about a camera that I try before but this one is an exception as I felt that there is a few points that I need to put out.

A week ago, Fujifilm did a camera hands-on session which include a small street photography workshop done by one of their brand ambassador (I think). To be honest I do not expect much from the workshop but the chance of trying out Fujifilm high end equipment on the street of Georgetown is much more interesting, and it’s free.

2017-08-13 11.01.20 010
Fujifilm XT20 – the camera that I tried for an hour. 

Ever since I continue my study in Penang, I never got the chance to explore the street of Penang as much as I thought I would be. Project submission and curricular activity has made me very occupied throughout the week. So this is like killing two bird with one stone, a chance to explore Georgetown with a better camera and to actually try Fujifilm recent offering.

Since it’s free and doesn’t seems to restrict only to Fujifilm camera user. I decided to give it a go.


The event was held at Gayo Cafe, next to the Chinahouse. A cafe that doesnt seems to bother to check their location on facebook, which made many of us late for the event as we scramble to find the exact location of the cafe.

As I was late, the talk already gone through halfway and the place was literally packed with people. The talk was done by Thomas Phoon where he gave a basic introduction on street photography.

2017-08-13 09.46.42
Street photography talk by Thomas Phoon. 

Street photography in general is a very difficult genre to dissect. Even the speaker try to keep it simple while at the same time entertaining to the crowd. It keep up with the basic approach to street photography while at the same time showcasing why Fujifilm X series camera are the best camera for street photography.

But I am not expecting a talk from Alex Webb here.


The only experience that I had with Fujifilm camera before is their X100 model. A camera which I was planning to get before getting a second hand Sony a900.

But that was back in 2012, where the autofocus was not up to standard and the control is a bit tedious compared to what I heard recently. For this session I was hoping to try the X-pro2 or the X100F in which I was unlucky as I was one of the last few at the back of the line.

2017-08-13 10.39.30
Due to my phone camera quality, the thing that the girl was holding is actually the Xpro2 Graphite. 

So for this, I have to settle with the Fujifilm XT20 with some random zoom lens that is left with them. The girls in front of me manage to use the Xpro2 Graphite, damn.

We left our MyKad with the organizer before taking the camera off to the street of Georgetown. I also ask one of the brand representative to teach me how to use the camera and to adjust the setting in which I find the camera control to be similar to my Olympus OM-1.


After a 10 minutes of basic Fujifilm camera session with one of the Fujifilm representative, I head out with the usual intention of taking photograph of whatever that I deem interesting.

This is also a good way to try the camera where in the recent year, saw many hardcore Nikon and Canon enthusiast to switch to the X-series system. On first impression, the camera control is pretty direct and simple with most of the necessary control are put on top of the camera plate. The most noticeable difference compare to the usual DSLR is the classic look of the camera which resembles the SLR back in the 70’s from the like of Olympus OM and Pentax LX. The camera is also surprisingly solid with the lens built quality is stunning, similar to a solid classic analog lenses made from stainless steel. Even though my loan lens had some used mark here and there.

You can refer to more information on XT20 at, as this blog is never meant for a scientific camera review. I used to like Fujifilm for its 400H Pro film.


One of the first frame that I took after I went out from the Cafe. Autofocus is blazing fast, no complain on that matter. 
I believe I was struggling with the EVF response rate. The camera has a rather annoying turn on rate when I switch from using live view to the EVF. Perhaps there is a problem with the sensor. Solved the problem by using only EVF for the entire time. 
So while testing the camera, I bump into my long lost senior back when I was studying for Diploma. On a side note, the camera retain the highlight details perfectly well and this is converted from RAW. 
I think this stray dog develop a sort of bond with the community. So chill. 
I was hoping for a Daido Moriyama kind of head turn from the dog. But no. Again, the camera retain great detail from this image file. 
Chill dog, enough said. 
The camera is not exactly discreet but the shutter sound is definitely quieter than what I am used to. The guy was talking something about California.  
More chit-chat on California. 
His name is Syed Mahathir. I did chat with him for a while. Wish to talk more but I am in a rush to return the camera soon. 
More people on bicycle around Georgetown. Again, great detail and sharpness from the camera. Wish I have some spare 8K under my pillow. 
Miscellaneous item. 
I wish to take this one with my TLR but somehow the shutter is stucked few days ago. 
One final picture before I return the camera. The kid was cute as she pose for her mum. Should have try a higher ISO for this. 


In general, mirrorless camera is a very viable option as a serious workhorse camera. For me that is. But this is not a surprise considering that Sony has somehow conquer the market with its mirrorless full frame camera, the RX1r and A7 series camera.

My point here is that I used to have some doubt on mirrorless camera, not in term of image quality but more on the actual shooting performance and I am glad that the technology for the camera is getting better.

2017-08-13 12.37.36
They were giving out comment on a selected 2 image from the outing. The selected 2 image were given some sort of prize. But the first selected image is interesting though. 
2017-08-13 13.11.52
The end of the workshop. 

In this day, most digital camera is a good camera. With only differences is more on the features than the actual image quality. For a starter the only thing that I find irritating with the camera is only the following (nothing serious) ;

  1. The EVF still could not replace the actual experience of using a viewfinder. Which I believe the X100F or Xpro2 suits me more. I am the kind of person who use viewfinder most of the time.
  2. The organizer doesn’t even bother to provide a neckstrap for their camera. So basically you are carrying 7K equipment around the area by holding onto the expensive lens.
  3. I just wish to try the Xpro2 instead. 😦

Given the opportunity, I wouldnt mind using the XT20 all year long. Its a great camera with tons of feature but so far, I am impressed.

As for the event, I believe it was a success. I consider myself a neutral when it comes to camera brand but Fujifilm did a good job on this and they even have a free meal.

Looking forward for a Leica camera hand-on test in the future. Hopefully.




I consider Penang street food to be one of the best in the world. The range of choice around the island and across over Butterworth is really just overwhelming. From the Chinese Hokkien cuisine and all the way to the famous Indian Muslim delicacy, the choice is really just endless.

Her flight is delay from Langkawi and then she found out we will be stuck in Penang for another 2 hour. 

That is until my girlfriend says that the food at her hometown is better. Yes, there is more choice here in Penang but the taste, according to her, is different. Whereas at Bahau, the taste is simply better and the texture or smell is definitely more authentic. She was saying that they cook it much better. And so does the Coffee.

As a good boyfriend that I am, I simply agree on this matter. Simply because she has good taste towards stuff and she is usually right.

Chance came upon me to visit her hometown during the semester break. She invited me to meet her family and at the same time, brought me around Bahau, Negeri Sembilan. For those that are wondering, I am a bit nervous when meeting them and yes, I do find it awkward at first but it gets better over time.

The flight delay took about 2 hours of everyone at the departure hall. Additional 30 minutes delay when we board the aeroplane. 

It is a week long visit to Bahau and it begin with a rather long trip from Penang, KL, and all the way to Bahau. But it’s just the beginning of very interesting trip in recent time.

I arrange all the picture that I took into one long post with caption in each photograph. That way it would be easier to view the entire post without bothering to read any poorly written paragraph.

Since our flight was delay, my girlfriend family have to wait for another 3 hour before going back to Bahau. The ride from the airport to Bahau is about 2 hour in a half and we arrive around 2am in the morning. 
Chin Seik showing off his bow and arrow set. Reminds me of my friends and cousin who used to play this in highschool. I am never much of a fan of static sports such as archery or bowling but I do appreciate the skill require to pull it off nicely. 
Grabbing our morning breakfast nearby. I don’t really have much expectation actually. 
But I was wrong, the coffee was great and the food was good as well. Wish the cafeteria near my dormitory can serve food like this, or at least the coffee that is. 
One of the reason why I gain so much weight in one week is because of they let me try a lot of great tasting food around Bahau. I forgot the Chinese word for this but it is basically Bahau famous Braised Pork Oflal. I rate this in my Top 3 food to eat in Bahau, and of course from those that is famous among the local. 
A friend of my girlfriend mum. Saw some great tasting bun and biscuit that is freshly made. 
Like daughter, like mother. 
I would rate this as my Number 1 food to try in Bahau. I have a very soft spot for tasty sweet cold dessert and this one is really one of the best that I try so far. Its called Wan Toa Lang if I was not mistaken and it consist of Jelly mixed with shaved ice and condensed milk, top off with a dash of lime. 
Not done with what we  eat that evening, we went on to try this delightful Tom Yam that is somehow cooked/serve in coconut. Not sure if this is unique to Bahau but the taste is alright. 
Coconut Tom Yam.  My stomach is pretty full now, barely able to breath. 
After the Tom Yam, they brought me to the famous Roti Canai shop. Again, I forgot the name of the restaurant but its near some clinic. As you can see, there is 3 different Roti Canai which my girlfriend say she find it to be very good. 
Her parents met their old acquaintance. 
Apparently they were neighbor 2 decades ago.  
Roti Canai with ICe-cream. Never thought it taste so good.  
The restaurant is just next to the place where my girlfriend and her siblings used to practice their musical instrument. This is her teacher doing some classes on harmonica. 
2nd day, and this is our breakfast. The food is good as expected. 
They say we just going to take a quick breakfast. 
They ended up showing me around the town area. 
I dont understand why she is like this. 
We discuss something about people wealth and house design. The house looks unique though. 
We are suppose to be visiting a temple here but the gate is closed. We went out to take a picture of the panorama view. Can’t see much actually. 
The grass is tall. 
This tree is taller. 
Okay, she is shorter. 
On our way to an abandoned golf park. 
Another interesting stuff to take picture off. 
Lembu Bahau. 
The golf coursed used to be owned by a Korean If I was not mistaken but it was left like this for no reason. (according to a local source) 
I think we can make something out of this. 
The guard dog. 


The brought some leftover to feed the dog. Such well mannered one as well. 


Then they brought me to this lovely spot. Good place to take portrait pictures I think. 
The squad for the day. 
First group photo of the day. 
Everyone is hungry. So we are going back home to eat some lovely home made food. 
Nope, cancel that, we are going to Rompin. (I think its Rompin or was it Kuala Pilah) 
This is their grandmother house yard. It is now rented by a movie director who doesnt seems to live there as much as they thought. 
So sad. 😦
Bye Bye… 😦 


Trying out Chin Seik new bow set.
The bow is bigger than her arms. 
Chin Seik admiring his new hairstyle. 


On our way to visit Ladang Gedis. 
Can’t remember what Silo is this for. Was it grain or something. Not sure. 
This is Ah Tong best pose. 
She brought the grass all the way until evening. 
SO cute. 
An old english building build by the British owner from many decades ago. 
Another group photo. 
Ah Tong told me not to upload this pictures online or else she will lose her image. 
Another group photo. 
Then somehow Chin Seik suggest that we should visit Roti Abdul. Its one of the oldest bread maker from Bahau that has been supplying delicious bread around the area for years. 
Found the Roti Abdul factory, but we can’t find the entrance. 
Found it. 
I love the smell of a bakery, and this is even more pleasing to my nose as the entire factory made bread and flavor filled bun like those gardenia. Roti Abdul buns and bread are cheap and tasty by the way. The entire factory is clean as well. 
Enjoying the scene while making some joke about something and eating some Roti Abdul. 
Ah Tong was showing her family palm estate area. She even told us how she used to play and help her family picking up the palm fruits into the lorry. 
No car was harm in the making of this picture. 
Happy kids. 
Another group photo. 
My girlfriend is a little kid on the inside. 
The last group photo of the day. 

Eventhough my girlfriend show me around Bahau, her family was actually was very eager to let me try many great different food around Bahau. So every night they brought me to many different places which is great. Never felt hungry even for the next few weeks.

I had assignment to settle that week. But we are having so much activities as well. 
For Orang Semenanjung, 1 hour ride is actually very close. 
A Char Kuey Teow that is made by using wood and flaming charcoal. 
That smile. 
The Char Kuey Teow taste good. But I was pretty full that time. 
Check it out, the flaming wooden stove. 
Her father showing me the places and building around the area. 
This is on top of some hill. The temple seems to be working on something even though its late at night. 
Chinese Architecture. 
That color contrast. 

I did visit Kuala Lumpur that week. For those who lives in Peninsular Malaysia, their understanding between near and far is way different compare to us in Borneo, especially for me who have been living in a small island for less than a decade. For my girlfriend, she thinks from Bahau to Kuala Lumpur is okay, and quiet near. (it’s more than 8 hour trip).

She made breakfast for me. Good effort though from her side. I want more. 
Going to the bus station. 
Those siblings were so excited. 
Waving to her mother face. 
And we arrive at the Seremban KTM train station.  Its an hour bus ride. 
Going up. 
Going down. 
The morning passenger to Kuala Lumpur. 
No seat for me. 
Got a seat then we found our fellow classmate from Politeknik Port Dickson. 
The kid was crying so we make some stupid face. 
I think she call her friend to inform him that we have arrive in KL Central. 
I purposely try to keep my stomach flat for this picture. 
Expensive priced food doesn’t make for a great tasting food. 
We took our lunch just next to the PAM Centre. 
Just look at the color palette and detailing. 
That smile. 
We grab a coffee at KLCC. The machiato was great. 
Went to Kinokuniya and bought a book by Stuart Franklin on Photojournalism. 
Its a rainy evening. 
Highlight of the day. Luckily I didn’t insist on getting one for myself, even with 4 of us we couldn’t finish the drink. 

Our highlight of the week was supposed to be a hiking trip to Bukit Broga. They say it is very near (1-2 hour trip is actually very ‘dekat’ to them). Instead since we arrive there a bit late with the sun high up on top of us, we decided to just visit the temple with Sun Wukong and enjoy ourselves.

Our breakfast for the day. Not the best and the coffee was so-so only. 
It’s only few weeks ago that Dota2 announced a new hero call the Monkey king. 
Going into the temple. 
The monkey king is still looking for something. 
I forgot what she is called. 
I just love the contrast. 
Orphaned kid. 
I forgot what is the story for this. 
Happy kid. 
Chin Wei showing the double peace sign. 
Wu Kong is still looking for something. 
The sibling. 
This is not Sabah. 
We found a great tasting coconut shake along the way. 
They have a regular customer it seems. 
After having our lunch, we decided to visit this housing estate nearby where the houses could reach million of ringgit. Its a gated development complete with a clubhouse. 
The show unit is fully furnished and expensive looking. Inspired by european style but I dont really like the design. 

The last day before going back was a bit relaxing, I just finished submitted my assignment and packing my stuff only took a short time to settle. We did manage to try her sister breakfast set before taking off to the airport.

She is showing off her brand new shoes that she never got to wear, YET. 
At the airport chilling with the Family Mart Matcha Ice-cream. 
That double chin of mine. 75kg by this time. 
That double cap style of her. 

So I got back home to my room with a full stomach. My girlfriend family has been extremely friendly and thoughtful for the entire week. It’s just that I wish I could be more nicer and less awkward during my next visit. Of course, there is a lot of other stuff to visit as well.

Next time, I gonna bring my Seagull and maybe my OM-1n.


Indonesia Trip 2013 [THROWBACK]

Indonesia Trip 2013 [THROWBACK]

   After getting my own passport for the first time, there was various choices of destination that I could visit with a year saving that I earn from working full-time as a project designer.

   Choices range from Singapore, Indonesia, and even Hong Kong. (saving was just enough to cover a week trip around this country)

   But I eventually choose Indonesia as a friend of mine invited me to follow him on a week trip to Indonesia to meet up with some of his friends at Jakarta and at the same time meeting up with some photographers for future collaboration on possible photography workshop and photo festival at Sabah. (At the time of writing, Kota Kinabalu Photo festival has went into its second edition back in December 2016 with numerous mentors being invited from Indonesia such as Agah Permadi, Erik Prasetya, and Romi Perbawa)

     It was a significant time to visit Jakarta as they are preparing for the upcoming election week with Jokowi being the locals favorite, Christmas is coming and New Year eve is just a week later.

   Personally, I didn’t do much research on Indonesia apart from the do’s ‘and don’t. As I will be tagging along with my friend. He assure me that everything is already planned, just standby enough money for the entire trip. No kidding, we even joke on being a millionaire overnight at the airport!.

Arrived at Jakarta at night. Heading out to McDonald to grab some quick bites before heading to Pak Agah house. 

   Another thing to note that all the pictures taken during the trip was using Ricoh GRD III and the brand new Ricoh GR. It was a loan unit from a good friend of his and the camera perform flawlessly but I am not used to it at some point hence the blurry pictures. I had some problem with the Ricoh GR Auto ISO.

It was late night and Pak Agah made sure that we got everything to stay at his house comfortably. 

   For the rest of our stay at Jakarta, I am quiet fortunate to received the hospitality from Pak Agah Permadi, a well known photographer himself, thanks to Mr Jebat for introducing him to me. The plan was to go to Bandung in the next few days and so far we will visit some of the place that is quiet favorable by photographers (more like tourist photographers).

On the next day, after we got our breakfast. We headed to the famous marine port, Sunda Kelapa. It has a lot history to it and to be honest, I didn’t know what to expect.

Our first taste on the infamous Jakarta traffic jam. 

The view from the rearseat. 

There is a lot of big boats over there. Most of them are used for cargo, not fishing. 

The happy man. He said he took some good picture here. 

The guardian. I believe, some of them live inside the boat, travelling around. What a life. 

There were chatting something about politician. Manage to chat with them a bit about the boat around the area. 

Repainting the boat for New year. 

They were carrying some stuff into the boat. 

We took a boat to visit the village on the other side of Sunda Kelapa. I can’t remember the price but we are nearly scammed if it were not for Pak Agah. 

Closest thing to visiting Venice. 

Pak Agah is trying to pinpoint a good spot that he usually visit to take some nice saloon style picture. This was the only time that Jebat pull out his Nikon. 
Kids nowadays should play more like this and less on computer screen. 

Must be Germany. 

   After spending more than 3 hour at Sunda Kelapa, it was time to grab our lunch. The sun was high and its getting hot, we were lucky that it was cloudy during our stay or else, the sunlight would be very harsh. We grab some nice lunch where they serve local delicacy ‘Masakan orang sunda’ but I don’t know the name of the place. It was Friday and I decided to the church next to the Istiqlal Mosque.

President of Indonesia at the time. 

  I regret for not exploring the area around the mosque but it was full of people and was super crowded, and I am afraid that I would run into problem since I haven’t got any local sim-card at the time. Istiqlal Mosque is huge and the design is fascinating for those who want to visit Jakarta.

Jakarta Cathedral

The interior was awesome. One of the finest Church design that I have seen so far complete with the Gothic detailing. The surrounding landscape is well maintained as well. 

Guys please, Jesus is watching. 

I almost got the newspaper because the layout and typography looks cool. 

The main agenda of the day was to visit Antara Journalistic Gallery and to meet with some of the person in charge for future collaboration. More info can be gather  here.

As you enter the gallery, you will be welcomed by this guy. 

A lovely aunty. She says her husband used to work for Antara News Office as a photographer. She is fluent in English by the way and not to be messed with. 

   Afterward Pak Agah bring us to the camera store nearby, there is an area where they sale cheap camera accessories. They bring me there because I ran out of memory so I bought the 16gb Sandisc instead which is cheaper than buying in Malaysia. Later, I use the Ricoh GR for the entire trip.

Can’t tell if they were a nun or otherwise. 

Going back home. 

Going through our loots. Some nice purchase that we got recently. Jebat is checking the bus ticket online, either that or we are working on how to work the mobile network. 

We are staying in a nice dense neighborhood filled with middle-class people of Jakarta. This is one of the many mural around the area. 

Jebat was taking his picture but I am simply following him. He is a security guard I think. 

That guy thought we are a customer. Ojek is like UBER but use motorcycle and doesn’t work on app. 

Lovely fella, one of the quote when we chat with them “Dari Malaysia? indak apa, bahasa sama. Kita serumpun.”. Can’t argue with that. 

This cart should be Indonesia main symbol for business and prosperity. 

   To be honest, we didn’t go to many place that day, the traffic was terrible and we don’t want to force Pak Agah to drive us around the place as it was inconvenient. That night we did have a plan to meet with Rony Zakaria, one of my mentor during IPA workshop in the last few months. He is also an award winning photojournalist for this awesome work around Gunung Merapi.

Pak Agah is not only interested in Photography and Music instrument, but he has some passion for airgun where they use tiny lead bullet which is enough to kill a small bird. 

Pak Agah eldest son in his room. 

It already past 6pm and its quiet dark and I am hungry. I decided to walk around the area to take some picture but instead bought some bakso and sate instead. 

It smells lovely. Cheaper than in Malaysia per stick.

We meet up wih Rony Zakaria that night. It was wonderful to see him again after so long. 

The man, Rony Zakaria.  He did show us some of his ongoing work on the Gunung Merapi and its in color. Thanks for sharing Rony. 

   In the next morning, I was told that we will accompany Pak Agah to get his youngest son, Qhairan, for circumcise. I was curious on how they do it here in this dense urban area and decided to tag along. I had nothing to do that morning anyway.

He is not excited at all but everyone is being positive. 

I ask him to smile before he went to take a nap. 



Pak Agah tries to calm him down. 

Still trying. 

Qhairan is looking for his mother.  

Almost a man.

This is when the doctor inject some anesthetic. 

There was a smell of burned skin everywhere. 

They say they use a laser. All I can see is a thin wire with electric current going through it. 

And he became a Man. 

  After our morning session with Qhairan circumcise (or Khatan) is done. Pak Agah bought us some food for lunch and it’s finally time to say goodbye as we will have to proceed to our next destination which is Bandung. We haven’t got the bus ticket but it can be bought easily since it was not fully booked that day. Funny thing is that we got the entire bus just for ourselves.

Pak Agah showing his photoshop skills and also some of his famous work. 

We can sit anywhere. 

One last snap before we head to Bandung. 

Halfway toward Bandung. 

I can feel the similarity with Kuala Lumpur here. 

Silver kid. First interesting thing that we saw when we got to Bandung. Not even close to our hostel yet. 

Took a cab to our hostel. The driver have 3 wives and Jebat was excited to listen to his story. Our hostel is located at Bukit Dago Utara.

They have a lot of dogs and pets around the hostel area. 

One of the coziest place to stay. 

   The main agenda for our visit to Bandung was to meet up with the local ‘underground’ photographer that is led by Sari Asih. We didn’t manage to meet her but instead we did somehow were welcomed by Tandia Permadi and Aditya Pratama (he runs Unobtainium selling photobook in Indonesia).

I knew his name before on facebook trying to sale his Leica to fund his trip to Angkor as he won the workshop grant. We did discuss a lot on photography issue and he is a terrific photographer. 

The restaurant have a nice pool table that the customer can play for free. 

   On the next day, we are accompany by Aip. He is a good photographer with a rather interesting body of work. Can’t recall his website though. He did show us around the town area and also gives us the direction to some of the custom boutique where Jebat is planning to make his club t-shirt at.

Complimentary breakfast. The coffee is good and nicely made. 

This is Aip, our tourguide/photographer.

Some of the random snap in portrait format. I took a lot of picture in portrait format during the entire trip. 

Rock and Roll.

The other side of Bandung during that time. I heard its getting better under the new Mayor recently. 

We took a ride inside a small cramped van, but it was cheap. 

Look at the hand. 

Buying our return train ticket to Jakarta. We only stay at Bandung for 2 nights. 

Our stay in Bandung was lovely, although we didn’t get to visit some of the famous places due to the warning from the geological department. Nevertheless I bought some t-shirt, jacket, and a nice black jeans which later I wear for the next 3 years.

Bandung is a town with temperate weather, and during that time it was slightly colder than usual with all the rain. This is the water heater and it use gas instead of the usual electric system. Notice the flame in the middle of the water heater?.

At Bandung Train station. 

Kucing Bandung.
The train.

One of the passenger.
First time on a train in a foreign country.

“Selamat siang, ticketnya Mas”

The landscape outside the train. I walk through the cabin and snap a lot before I went to sleep. 

Almost reached the train station, in the next 15 minutes. 

One of the last stop before reaching the main train station. 

It was a funny scene, I took an Ojek while Jebat ride on Pak Agah motorcycle. The luggage is heavy and we have to go through the crazy Jakarta traffic for this. 

Its very much like in Malaysia. 

I need a selfie to be hip. 

   It was on New Year eve and thing is getting interesting in Jakarta. The traffic surge like crazy towards evening and noise were everywhere. Pak Agah did warn us that it is not a good idea to go to the Tugu Monas as the traffic is mad and you wont be able to go back home on time afterwards. We really want to go there but we don’t want to trouble Pak Agah either so instead we spend the night at his house instead. We are tired from the train ride anyway but the sounds of the fireworks towards midnight makes for some interesting visual and sight.

It’s not even 12am yet.

Some of the neighbor around the area. 

It’s midnight and the entire area sounds like a battlefield. I should had look for a better angle to show the scene around the area.

As this is our last day at Indonesia, again there was nothing much to do as the traffic is getting busier but Pak Agah told me that it is so much better than usual. Apparently during holiday, most of the people will go back to their hometown and most of those who stay at Jakarta is only the local that are doing some odds job.

We did manage to visit the high-end area of Jakarta and Jebat got his Hardrock cafe t-shirt from Jakarta. It’s a stark contrast to the other part of Jakarta though.

We meet up with Ridzki, Tommy, and Rony that day. It was nice and there is a lot interesting photobook being pass around. The cafe is lovely as well. 

A must have picture. We are heading to Jakarta Hardrock Cafe. 

Another side of Jakarta. 

I thought this would look interesting so I took a picture of it. 
We joked that they look very lovely together.

Then I realized that the joke is on me and I don’t have a girlfriend. Okay, it says Ground Floor. 

A few hours before our flight, clearing our stuff and ready to go.

Pak Agah has been very nice to us. I personally grateful to meet such humble person. He is seeing us off at the airport. 

To get to our plane, we need to take a bus. Very convenient. 
Goodbye Jakarta, until we see you again.