Alhamdulillah I am lucky because I actually have saved the photos of my trip to Chiang Mai in the drafts of this blog. So yup, I can still cover the second day and third day there though I did not manage to continue the rest of my first day :p Anyway I did check out the Thai Silk factory and bought some souvenirs for my family.
Moving on, early next morning (actually I was late, Selina planned to bring me to check out the Elephant farm but I was too late for the morning show) she decided to bring me to other places. Firstly, she brought me to visit the local market which is nearby to my hotel. It's more or less similar with the typical market in Malaysia, but of course it offers products which are very much Chiang Mai and might be new to me :)
In front of the Tuk-Tuks.
Selina bought the black mushrooms which you can see in this picture. She said the mushrooms are very delicious and must be cooked on the same day you purchase it because if you don't eat them fresh they won't taste as good, so she planned to cook those with her mum for dinner. I went to Selina's house yesterday, met her sweet, friendly mum. I was really happy Selina also loves reading like crazy, and she showed me her collection of accessories which she handmade them.
I did not enter the wet market because I was not planning to cook definitely :p The dry market offers really great stuff especially the local sweets and dessert which are just amazing. They even sell the strange stuffs for you to eat such as snakes and insects here.
We have dodol in Malaysia too, but usually it's just in the original dark brown and green colour. Dodol is sweet, sticky nougat made from coconut and I like the ones with Durian flavour.
This lady here is friendly and most of the time she just smiled at me because I cannot speak Thai except for the very basic ones. She sells lots and lots of handmade dessert, which are delicate and attractive looking reminding me of the Baba Nyonya dessert of Melaka. Best of all she sells the BEST Jala Emas (Gold Net) which is famous as Kelantanese dessert in Malaysia. I usually buy them from a Kelantanese dessert stall in Ramadhan because I love them so much I just shut my eyes paying RM 2 per piece, but her I just have to pay RM 5 for a pack of 10 pieces. Huh! :p
Ha these ones really remind me of the Malaccan Baba Nyonya dessert. Even when I went to Japan they have this kind of dessert as well but formed in their local flowers such as lotus and sakura.
After purchasing some local dessert, Selina decided to bring me to Airport Plaza, a very large shopping mall which is obviously located very nearby to the Chiang Mai airport. Here it is just like any shopping mall where it offers branded names from overseas as well as cool stores offering local traditional and modern products from the medium to the extravagant prices.
I was ecstatic when Selina suggested us to watch a movie. I felt excited because although I have been to many countries before but I never catch a movie there. So this would be my first time I insisted to watch a Thai movie instead of a Hollywood movie. Thailand is infamous for their creations of films especially their comedy and definitely horror films. I am a fan of horror films especially Asian ones (because you feel that they're closer to you so they scare you more) and I was lucky that one movie was showing called See Praeng or 4Bia (Phobia)
See Praeng or known in english as 4Bia
In Buddhism of course the number 4 similarizes death so they believe that it's an unlucky number. Selina watched the movie previously and she said that it's from the makers of Shutter, Double or Twins can't recall what it is called. I have watched Shutters and it scared the hell out of me so I can't wait to watch this one. Selina said it's a combination of 4 short films which are in some small ways connected to each other.
I laughed when I saw a row of Selina's discount cards when she purchased the movie tickets. Obviously she loves to shop because as a tourist guide she always must follow her tourists so at the same time she shops for herself because she rarely travel elsewhere than Chiang Mai. It was really interesting when later the movie was about to start Selina purchased Popcorn sprinkled with Cheese powder which is not available in Malaysia.
One thing that really touched me and made me green with envy was before the film start, the screen played Thailand's national anthem with a video of Thai people with their King's beautiful photographs somehow became a part of their lives. Everybody in the audience abruptly stood up when the first note was heard although the cinema was pitch-dark. In Malaysia, if the national anthem is played it is either people would lazily stand up when a quarter of the song is played or donot stand at all. This scenario reminded me of the time I watched Black Eyed Peas concert in Bangkok I had goosebumps when the chatting youngsters at the concert IMMEDIATELY stood up when they heard the national anthem being played right before the concert started. That was a sobering experience for me and how I wish our Negaraku song will be played before concerts or a movie as well.
Anyway regarding on the movie, it was THE BEST HORROR FILM I have ever watched. Of course Thai movies, like Indonesian movies always have beautiful cinematography. All the short films are from different themes but indeed connected and scary as hell especially the final short film about a stewardess trapped with the ghost of her lover's wife in a flight. I mean when you are thousands of metres above ground where can you actually run right? I remember hugging Selina and screamed the loudest in the cinema, and when the movie was over people with scared-like adrenalin sensation rushed out of the cinema. I thought the Thais must be very used of watching horror films that they still could cope up with this movie, because when I watched this movie again with my sister Deena and my good buddy Hafiz in Malaysia in August, I remember even Hafiz a guy was scared as hell and several people left the cinema without waiting for its end. Such an impact! I am now very excited that 4Bia 2 is releasing on 5th November 2009. Really really not going to miss that insha Allah.
Oh yes actually while waiting for the movie to start, Selina and I decided to have lunch at the mall's food court. Selina informed me that there is a Muslim food stall and the food is delicious. It's really nice of Selina that she keeps treating me with food and the movie as well. She told me she doesn't see me as her tourist but as her own sister I was very touched :)
The Muslim food stall. One lady working there was not friendly though :/
Spices and condiments for the menu.
Fried Glass Noodles
Seee I told you she was not friendly? I asked her not to put bean sprouts on my Fried Glass Noodles (Soo Hoon) coz I hate to eat them but she ignored my request huh! Anyway after removing the tauge I ate some tasty fried soo hoon. Hot, just the way I like it.
We also ordered some very crunchy Roti Canai but it was poured with some sweet condensed milk making the taste even tastier! Although it is sweet it was combined with what I consider one of the best Chicken Curry I have ever tasted. Some sort of curry which reminded me that I have tasted the same kind somewhen during my childhood.
Sweet Roti Canai + Chicken Curry
After the movie, I just shopped for attractive note books (cannot shop much because I shopped too much at the weekend market) I was amazed with this great portrait made from knit-work.
Later on I just accompanied Selina shopping. Interestingly at this mall, there are a few small boutiques selling really cool and fun clothes for plus size people. Usually these are the shops which Selina like to shop for herself because she is young so of course she likes youthful and trendy clothes as well.
Small boutiques selling trendy, cool clothes for plus size women.
Not to forget she also bought some Jeruk for herself :)
We later on met my father and his friends for dinner at this one Muslim restauran. I think it was the same as yesterday. Of course the food was heavenly because all of them were served hot.
Mixed Tom Yam
Chicken with Cashew Nuts
Satisfied golfers enjoying dessert :)
After our stomachs were filled with sumptuous good food, Ayah still not exhausted enough decided to have a Karaoke session at the hotel's karaoke club. My father's friends were quite nervous actually assuming that I am not open-minded and might be thinking that they are 'naughty' men, I mean oh come on I am fine with some harmless entertainment :p
It was hillarious really for two reasons. Firstly when my father wanted to other drinks and snacks, the GROs entered the room in a row facing us so that my father and his friends could choose which ones they like. I held myself from laughing because Ayah and his friends really looked nervous and even said 'We want to order drinks not these.' They looked at me wanting to explain THIS is not them but I just smiled :p
After that before we started to sing, the remote was stuck and the TV was stuck showing us Pussycat Dolls' Don't Cha. You know how PCD's videos are? My father's friends of course were stunned because those women are hot, and Ayah and their friends are obviously normal men so they oohheed and aaahhhedd a little. It was really hillarious looking at my father's nervous look because he was caught between his friends and his daughter here :p When I told about this to my sister and mum back in KL we really had a great laugh.
Selina during dinner.
Selina and her adorable staff which she treats like her own sister, Jinny.