my travels got me to taiping, the 'wettest' town in the peninsular malaysia, having received rain almost daily! the land of the first museum in malaysia, 'museum perak', and the famous 'taiping lake gardens', taiping also houses the 'bukit merah laketown resort', a beautiful getaway for families and friends.
if you're coming through the highway from ipoh/kl, just drive straight on until you see a pink shoplot, turn right and you'll find one of the famous makan places in taiping - simply known as 'bomba, jln tupai' as it's situated near a fire station.
this makan place is special to me and my family because my tokcik has a food lot here. her kerai makan is called 'selera desa 3&4' one for the lauk-pauk, and one lot for the drinks.
on that day that i saw her, she was still her spunky self, moving hither and tither in her usual fast-paced, no wasted-time manner. tokwan was still the one busy making drinks for the thirsty customers. what an urat-dawai-tulang-besi power couple!
tokcik is my mak's youngest auntie. my gramma's youngest sister. orang utara ni panggil nenek, tok. panggil datuk, tokwan. when i was really young i was confused with the name, but naturally it caught on. my nephews and khaleef called her 'tokcik nyang'. at 80 plus, my tokcik and tokwan dah pangkat moyang dah!
she really is the diamond in my family and all of us love her very, very much. she has always been there for all of us - for the good and bad times, selflessly showering her unconditional love. my mom and her siblings lost their parents at an early age so they all looked up to her as their own mother. that's why all of us - my sisters and i, and all my cousins know her as our grandmother.
from the moment my mother and her siblings were left orphaned, to the festive time of celebrating yong's wedding - she was there, the busiest of all. she even sew the curtains and bed decorations for my wedding! she was there to take care of my mom during pantang when she had me, and she was even there to take care of me when i had khaleef! (even as i write this i'm trying not to cry!)
so there i was, visiting my fav gramma tokcik with mr. khairul's mom, my sis in law little sofia and my kids. i didn't know the way so my auntie cik and her husband uncle rosli led the way.
don't get me started on the lauk. what lauk do you have in mind? from the simple ayam masak kicap to the pucuk ubi. from ikan keli bakar to the kangkong belacan. all for your grumbling tummy to feast on.
it was nice to see sofia enjoying the food, choosing her lauk that showcased her taste like orang tua - nasi with kuah lemak, ikan keli and kerang!
khaleef had his favorite nasi and chicken soup, with fried drumstick on the side. my mom-in-law also seemed to be enjoying herself with the ample choice of lauk from tokcik's kedai makan.
me? a must for me is the ikan keli bakar, sohun masak lemak, sayur kacang and of course - tokcik's sambal belacan. tantalizing!
mau minum apa?
drinks station was hosted by tokcik's beloved hubby - tokwan with his specialty - ais kacang! tokwan is a funny dude, in his quiet ways. he's not one to be the life of a kenduri, but when you get him talking one on one, he can be quite a hoot!
below is a picture of my sis-in-law sofia enjoying tokwan's signature ais kacang with melted ice-cream, while my drooling khaleef looked on!
while waiting for the adults to finish their 'business' the kids played see-saw. sampai tercabut tayar getah tu. adoi!
kahfi had fun with uncle abu and his sepet looka-likey uncle umar (cik's sons), and later being terrorized by a certain 'tok li' with a white beard!
it was a wonderful visit - we got to hug and kiss our beloved tokcik, see her new grandson (uncle halim and auntie shila's new baby, hazman) and i get to munch yummy ikan keli bakar.
..then it rained! kalo tak boleh pegi zoo taiping. great taiping trip!