Bumbu Bali, Puchong

Bumbu Bali is a world famous Balinese cooking school on the island of Bali, Indonesia. You can find cookbooks at many book store featuring recipes from that school.

This Bumbu Bali place that I went to today is a Balinese themed restaurant in Bandar Puteri Puchong which has no connection whatsoever with the school in Bali. For your info, bumbu in Malay means herbs.

Actually I followed a colleague and a few clients for lunch today and we were looking for a good place to eat nearby. So I casually suggested Secret Recipe and then suddenly everybody started to laugh. They thought I was kidding. Apparently Secret Recipe is not expensive enough to treat your very important clients.

My drink for today is this delicious banana milkshake. RM9.00.

I have never been to this place so I have no clue what's good here. To be safe I decided to try a little bit of everything hence this Bali Trio meal which is basically barbecue chicken wings with fried calamari and sate lilit (satay wrapped around lemongrass). The chilli dipping is extra spicy just the way I like and they also serve mayonaise and that other dipping which I didn't try. RM45.00.

My friend had this nasi campur Bali which is Bali style fried chicken and rice and that thing at the bottom. RM28.00.

This is siap mepanggang (I think) which is really roasted lamb with rice. RM24.00.

Having western food like this chicken pasta in a Balinese restaurant is a crime really. RM16.50.

For desserts, we had this pisang bakar which is basically banana caramel with ice cream. No idea where that 'bakar' part came from. RM13.00.

Bumbu Bali opens everyday from 11:00 am till late. The two-storey restaurant has a really nice Balinese style deco and the ambience is quite cool & relaxing. No air-conditioner in here and yet you don't feel the heat from outside.

However the Balinese background music can sound a little bit mundane after a while.

If you don't get a heart attack from all the sinfully delicious and cholesterol-laden food, perhaps the bill would. Lunch for four will cost you something around RM215.00. That's an average of RM50.00 per person for an average meal set. Even having a cute manager who looked like Fazura couldn't help ease the pain. Bumbu Bali is located in Bandar Puteri Puchong, Selangor. This place is run by Eddy and his wife from Bali (so they say).

Taman Putra Perdana

Right in the middle of Putrajaya, the administrative capital of Malaysia is a little park located on top of the hill just next to Putrajaya Shangri-La Hotel.

Like every other parks in Putrajaya, Taman Putra Perdana is free and open to public with plenty of parking space.

This place is great if you'd like to take your family for a stroll or go jogging around the 158 acres park.

In the middle of the park, there is the Mercu Tanda plaza which is a 78 metres tall structure designed in the shape of pyramid and is a proud symbol of Mahathir's iron-fist rule of Malaysia for the past 4 decades or so.

There is a time capsule in front of this monument that contained a number of official documents on the history and development of Putrajaya.

People with children would definitely welcome this little playground next to the parking lot.

For people whose trying to be fit, there's two exercise facilities provided in the park where you can exercise to your heart's desire. It's like a gym but free.

Since it's located on top of a hill, this park is an excellent spot to view the gorgeous and panoramic view of the surrounding area, especially during sunset. If you're lucky, you might just see @bikmama2u hanging her laundry on the clothes line.

 At the other end of the park is the Megalith park which was built by the native Batak people of Putrajaya centuries ago.

 High five anyone?

A good park would not be complete without a free (and clean) public toilet like the one they got here.

If you're staying at the Shangri-La hotel (you lucky basterd), the park is just a short stroll away across your hotel room.

Taman Putra Perdana is great and stuff but my only complaint is the big, hairy mosquitoes feasting on the visitors who came. Maybe the should fog the area twice a week or something before somebody dies of dengue (@najibrazak are you reading this?). Apart from that, this park is an excellent place to go in the evening or weekends. Putrajaya folks are a lucky lot. They just don't realize it.

Taman Putra Perdana is open daily from 7:00 am to 8:00 pm on weekdays and 10:00 pm on weekends. You can find it in the middle of Putrajaya in Precint 1.

Get rewarded with MySurvey

Other than putting ads on your blog/website, another great way to get rewarded online is by doing surveys. Now there are a few hundred different online surveys out there but to find one that is relevant and not a scam is another matter.

One trustworthy online survey that I have been doing for the past 2 years or so is MySurvey by Lightspeed Research. Unlike some other market research companies, Lightspeed focuses on the local market so the survey questions are for local brands that are already familiar to you.

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So next time you have a couple of minutes to kill online, why not do a survey from MySurvey and get rewarded for your little effort. Sure beats becoming mayors for a million different venues on Foursquare or playing Sims Social all day.

Here's a tip. Some of the surveys will screen out unsuitable candidates like people who doesn't fit their target demographic. You don't have to be an honest abe every time. Once in a while it's okay to say you earn more than 5K in your household or claim that you live in PJ :) Visit MySurvey website to join now.

Shopping Rantau Panjang

Rantau Panjang is one of the many popular shopping destinations in Kelantan apart from the state capital Kota Bharu, Wakaf Che Yeh or Pengkalan Kubor just to name a few.

Situated up north right on the border to Sungai Golok in Thailand, Rantau Panjang has been a shopping haven for visitors local or foreign especially for its duty free status. Believe it or not it's been 20 long years since I have last been here. It's not that I don't want to, it's just I don't feel the urge to come here before. Obviously, many things has changed since I last visited like there are many more shops and parking space are even harder to come by here.

However the one thing that didn't change much is the eateries here. The food is still cheap here and if you are not very particular with the hygiene here then this is the place to fill your tummy before doing some serious shopping.

The main attraction here are clothes and dresses of all shape, types and budget although most of them are still relatively cheap compared to say, KL or other major cities. Apart from that you can also find all kinds of household items on sale here including crockery, kitchenware, home furnishings, shoes and so much more.

If you're looking for cheap replica football jerseys then this is the right place to go. You'll be in jersey heaven looking at those jerseys of many of the top football clubs in the world like Liverpool F.C and Liverpool F.C reserves team. The price are basically fixed from RM28.00 onwards no matter how much you try to haggle.

I came looking for this particular track top. The original merchandise from Nike would cost me a cool 250 ringgit or more. This one starts from RM35.00. A bargain would be an understatement. Even in KL they would easily cost 10 ringgit more.

Being only the 3rd day from Raya, many of the shops here are still closed. Else the streets here would be packed with tourists and you'd had plenty more places to choose from and the price would be even cheaper during non-peak season.

Getting out of the duty free zone requires you to pass through this customs checkpoint. If you didn't buy a car-load of goods or merchandise then going home should be a breeze. Else you need to declare all your purchases and pay 15% tax on everything you bought. Getting a receipt for everything you bought would be a great help for you and the customs officer. Then again if you just bought a few things just for you yourself and your family then it should not be a problem.

Rantau Panjang is situated about 21 kilometers from Pasir Mas or about 40 kilometers from the state capital, Kota Bharu. Your visit to Kelantan will not be complete if you don't visit this place. Click on the Foursquare link below for exact location.