Hello, Jeanne and Kimbely! This is Momo.
This is a photo of the Piano recital on April 15th. I and Naotaro played the piano on the stage.
We like music, but practicing the piano everyday is sometimes hard!
Kimmi saw me keeping away some CNY outfits I’d just bought for Jeanne. She wanted to try them, but I told her they were too big for her, so in the end she tried on the outfit she is going to wear this CNY, a red cheongsam that Jeanne used to wear (bought by Por Por). It fits quite well.
She seems pleased with it too.
After that Jeanne must also try on her CNY dress and strike the same pose.
They make a pair.
Kimmi dressed in Jeanne’s old school uniform and going to school for the first time.
She was happy to be going to school. When we reached there, she kicked her shoes off and ran inside and forgot about her Daddy and Mommy outside. Later the principal called and said there was no problem at all.
Kimmi turns around to show off her cute schoolbag. Jeanne shows off her “present” (actually a box stuffed with some of her toys which she wanted wrapped).
Here are the girls all dressed up for Christmas lunch in dresses their Por Por bought for them.
Kimmi teases Jeanne. Note Barbie doll and toy bus, their Christmas presents.
Making monkey faces.
Little Pink Riding Hoods at the airport.
Jeanne’s room is always a mess so we bought her a new unit with drawers and shelves (to be shared with Kimmi). Here they are helping KK assemble it.
They seem fascinated by it.
Here it is all set up in Jeanne’s room.
We drove back from Camerons to Ipoh on the last day and didn’t have time to do anything after that except rest and pack. We were leaving for home that night.
Kimmi had a last chance to feed the fish at my in laws’ house. She has taken a liking to feeding them … whenever we arrived for dinner she’d immediately seek KK’s father out, take him by the hand and pull him over to the fish tank.
Jeanne on the other hand took a liking to the Marie biscuits there. Kept asking for them and eating them nonstop.
On this last evening, mother in law brought out this small hairband with two pigtails attached and put it on Kimmi. This hairband has been around for ages. I remember seeing it when I first visited Ipoh, plus photos of Helen and Yi Chien (the eldest niece) wearing it.
Mother in law kept fishing out other headgear, including a santarina hat. Jeanne submitted to wearing some flowers.
Mother in law told me to bring the headgear home but I said no need. Luckily she didn’t press the issue, we already have so much junk at home.
We also visited the HSBC bungalows down the road from Cluny Lodge. KK’s grandfather used to work there as a cook, and so his dad knows the people there and it was nice for him to have a chance to visit and reminisce about how things used to be.
The caretaker Mr Lim and his wife seemed pleased to see us. The conversation was mostly in Hainanese and Cantonese so I couldn’t follow all of it, though. Mr Lim kept teasing Kimmi and wanting to carry her, to which she responded with her usual vehement “no no no!!!”
The gardens there are usually very nice and full of flowers with a nice view of the mountains (incidentally the photo in the top bar of this blog was taken there). However this time we were dismayed to find that the view had been spoilt by a large area of construction, so there was a gaping area of raw earth where greenery used to be.
We had to make do with taking photos in other directions.
Last time we were here Mrs Lim gave Jeanne some strawberries she grew herself, and Jeanne remembered, but this time Jeanne came to me saying with a bit of disappointment that there were no strawberries. But Jennylyn got a few shots of Kimmi examining the strawberry plants.
At the end of the visit we took a photo with the Lims. And Kimmi, after rejecting all of Mr Lim’s overtures to carry her, finally actually gave him a hug and kiss!
Meals at Cluny Lodge are usually quite nice, with a choice of western or Chinese. The western meals are a complete set with starters (soup), main course and dessert with tea/coffee.
Here is Kimmi waiting to begin breakfast.
We visited a Boh Tea plantation at Sungei Palas on the second day. The road there was really narrow and winding, so narrow that only one car may be accomodated, and so there were “passing places” along the way where the road widened so that cars could pass one another.
The main building was on a steep hill and consisted of an open cafe at one end with a pleasant view of the plantation, connected by a long corridor to a large shop containing all sorts of teas, plus a small movie viewing room and an old tea crusher on display at the other end.
The girls wore pink jackets with hoods. A middle eastern woman in the guided tour later asked if they were twins! At first I couldn’t figure out what she was saying. I was pretty astonished, never occurred to me that they might pass off as twins at all, so it must be the matching hoods.
Jeanne saw a Caucasian boy sitting on the tea crusher on display and wanted to do likewise.
The boy had a smaller brother whom Kimmi tried to make friends with. Kimmi was quite friendly but the little boy just looked astonished. His father, a red-bearded giant, said he was only 20 mths old. I don’t think they were German (both boys were blond), maybe Dutch or Scandinavian.
The guided tour was quite a standard tea processing tour. Father in law browsed in the shop and bought some tea back, because apparently Chun Seng (one of the cousins in primary school) drinks tea. Kind of surprised to hear this, he’s a very cheeky kid and tea seems such a genteel drink.
KK’s fourth auntie later told us that strawberry flavoured tea can only be obtained in Camerons, because she scoured Ipoh for some and couldn’t find any. Pity she didn’t tell us earlier or we could have bought it for her. She also told us about a good restaurant in Tana Rata and a bungalow near the Smoke House that sells good homemade ice cream, so I’m storing the info away for the next time we visit.
We ended off by taking a family photo with the rolling hills of the tea plantation around us.