a picture of penang

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Wow. This is probably the first time that I have decided to post something nice and long (and worth reading) on my blog for almost two weeks…. Maybe I should congratulate myself for reviving my blog. Yeah… Btw, I just came back from the CO trip in Penang, and quite obviously (If you didn’t read the title, or didn’t understand it), I’m planning to write about it. So ya, here goes…

In Penang, everything is like some parallel universe of Singapore – The Chinese there speak Mandarin, but with a different intonation, and there is Laksa, except it tastes of Assam, and even their concert hall, Dewan Sri Pinang (which we performed in) actually looks like SCH (Singapore Conference Hall), if not for the fact that everything was not red in colour.

This “parallel universe” concept drags all the way to the food street at Gurney Road – When I walked to the Laksa stall, I told the attendant I would like “san1 kuai4” (3 dollars) worth of Laksa. On this perefectly normal statement that I thought would assimilate perfectly into any “food centre” environment, the shop attendent gave me a blank look and a painfully audible “Har…” (which sadly was probably the only thing we had in common in terms of intonation).

After a “slow-motion” period of 3 seconds, her face lights up and she tells me “Horrrr…. Ni1 yao2 san3 kuai1 de3 a1″ (Pay attention to the pinyin and you’ll get it).

My reply – “Shi4, wo3 yao4 san3 kuai1 de4″

Apologies for the diffculty of non-Mandarin speakers in understanding this post. Btw, Fyi, in case you didn’t know, the number behind the sound is the pinyin for the Mandarin character.


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