Saturday, January 25, 2020

Celebrating Chinese New Year 2020

Today, January 25, 2020 (Saturday) is Chinese New Year, the very first day of a new lunar year. This new year ushers in the Year of the Rat, the first of the 12 zodiac signs in the Chinese calender. This year it is a Metal Rat.

I would like to wish everyone celebrating this auspicious occasion a Happy & Prosperous Chinese New Year, as it is normally referred to here in this part of the world. Elsewhere it is also referred to as the Lunar New Year Festival or more commonly known as the Spring Festival in China.

Source: 123greetings

The Chinese community around the world celebrates this traditional festival which runs for 15 days ending on 15th day known as the Lantern Festival in China and over here it's referred to as Chap Goh Meh in the Minan or Teochew dialects.

Let's take a look at how some people are celebrating around the world this year, 2020.

Indonesian children carry lanterns during a parade as part of Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations in Bali, Indonesia on Jan. 24.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson points at performers dressed as lions as he welcomes members of the British Chinese community for Chinese New Year celebrations outside 10 Downing Street in London, England on Jan. 24.

Cambodians perform the traditional Chinese dragon dance near the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh on Jan. 24.

Entertainers perform at Rod Laver Arena during day five of the Australian Open at Melbourne Park in Melbourne, Australia, on Jan. 24.

Fireworks light up the sky over the skyline of midtown Manhattan and the Empire State Building in New York City celebrating the upcoming Chinese New Year, as seen from Weehawken, New Jersey, U.S., on Jan. 23.

A bicyclist stands in front of a display for the upcoming Lunar New Year in Beijing, China, on Jan. 22.

Dancers perform a drama piece titled "Shi Feng" in celebrations of the upcoming Chinese New Year in Tel Aviv, Israel, on Jan. 20.

Citizens shop for the upcoming Lunar New Year in Macao, China, on Jan. 20.

Members of a Chinese Wudang Kung Fu group perform a traditional Kung Fu show to celebrate the Spring Festival in Amman, Jordan, on Jan. 20.

People select decorative items at Chinatown in San Francisco, California, U.S., on Jan. 19.

More on celebrating Chinese New Year on MSN.

You may also be interested in:

Auspicious Days to Start Work 2020
Feng Shui Lucky Colors for 2020 for each zodiac sign

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Pictures of the Week from MSN

Let's see what's around the world this past week according to MSN's 'Pictures of the week'.

Let's start off with this image of French climber Alain Robert. Also known as "Spiderman", this image shows him scaling the Tour Total skyscraper in support of the anti pensions reform strikers at La Defense financial and business district on Jan 13.

And closer home in The Philippines, a lightning streak is seen over Batangas as Taal Volcano erupts on Jan. 20.

And in Sydney, Australia, projections are seen on the sails of the Sydney Opera House in recognition of the communities affected by wildfires and to honor firefighters, on Jan. 11.

In Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, a soccer player from the Haiti team, and survivor of the 2010 earthquake, in action during the 'Two Crutches And A Ball' event, held on the 10th anniversary of the earthquake in Haiti, on Jan. 11.

The next picture kind of reminds me of our yearly smog situation. This is of Melbourne, Australia - A general view of Rod Laver Arena at Melbourne Park with the city shrouded in smoke in the background, on Jan. 14.

The beauty of sunrise. Frankfurt, Germany - A woman walks her dog just before sunrise on Jan. 14.

In Lisbon, Portugal - Neighbors and environmentalists join efforts to plant trees in a park as part of the initiatives included in Lisbon European Green Capital 2020 on Jan. 12.

Agra, India - Tourists visit the Taj Mahal on Jan. 12. It is said the the Taj Mahal has very good feng shui features.

New York, US - Participants in the 19th Annual "No Pants Subway Ride" travel in the subway on Jan. 12. I didn't read about this taking place in Malaysia this year.

And finally, this one of Paris, France - A model presents a creation by Off-White, during the men's Fall/Winter 2020/2021 collection fashion show on Jan. 15.

For more images, check out MSN's Pictures of the Week.

Friday, January 17, 2020

Man climbing up a coconut tree

Some mornings are this colourful in Malaysia, particularly in Terengganu, a north-eastern state on Peninsula Malaysia.

The above is a stunning image of a man climbing up a coconut tree at sunrise which was featured on Apple's official Instagram page. Picture was taken by Nor Azmeer Iskandar Amir Hamzah.

The Kuala Lumpur native said he took the image in August last year at Kampung Rusila in Marang, Terengganu, a fishing town located on the main highway between Kuantan and Kuala Terengganu.

Source: MSN

Sunday, December 29, 2019

For 2020 - 15-day online ‘visa’ for tourists from India, China

Here is good news for tourists from India and China for 2020 which is Visit Malaysia Year.

MSN has the story..

PETALING JAYA: For the whole of 2020, tourists from India and China merely need to register online and can make a 15-day stay in Malaysia without a tourist visa.

The visit is limited to only 15 days and cannot be extended. Tourists are allowed to re-register to enter Malaysia after 45 days from the date they leave Malaysia.

The visa exemption was granted in a ministerial order under the Passports Act that was gazetted on Thursday. It was signed by Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad, exercising the functions of the home minister.

The order says the tourists should be registered with the electronic travel registration and information system, individually or through any travel agency registered with the Malaysian missions in India or in China.

A tourist can travel to Malaysia within three months after he is registered in the electronic travel registration and information system, the order said.

The tourist can enter Malaysia and exit from Malaysia only through authorised airports or at seven border crossings:

Sultan Iskandar Building, Johor; Johor Bahru railway station; immigration control post at Kompleks Sultan Abu Bakar, Tanjung Kupang, Johor; Padang Besar, Perlis; Bukit Kayu Itam, Changloon, Kedah; Sungai Tujoh, Sarawak; and the immigration control post at Tedungan in Limbang, Fifth Division, Sarawak.

The order says the tourists may not apply for any other passes under the Immigration Regulations 1963.

Tourists from both these countries should have a valid ticket for their return home or by air to any other country. They must produce proof of sufficient pocket money, credit card or bank card, and produce their travel itinerary in Malaysia.

Malaysia intends to draw 30 million visitors during Visit Malaysia Year 2020.

Saturday, December 28, 2019

Visit Kuala Lumpur - videos to watch

Planning a trip to Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur to be exact? Here are a number of videos I recommend watching to prep you on what to expect here in KL as we locals refer her as.

Let's start with this one. This is a 2012 video but still very applicable.

Here's another, a first time in Kuala Lumpur video with no real itinerary. This one is more of a random walk-around but nevertheless informative and gets you to what you would want to see and experience in KL.

And this one is a list of 25 things from Samuel and Audrey who have been to Kuala Lumpur many times before.

They have so kindly listed down their

25 Things to do in Kuala Lumpur City Guide:

1) Kuala Lumpur Bird Park (Taman Burung Kuala Lumpur) - 00:38
2) Perdana Botanical Garden (Lake Gardens - Taman Botani Perdana - 湖滨公园 - ஏரி பூங்கா) - 02:03
3) Sri Mahamariamman Temple (ஸ்ரீ மாரியம்மன் கோவில் - Kuil Sri Mariamman - 马里安曼兴都庙) - 02:52
4) GuanDi Temple (共青团路关帝庙) 03:24
5) Central Market for shopping and eating (Pasar Seni Kuala Lumpur - 吉隆坡中央艺术坊 - மத்திய சந்தை) - 03:39
6) Laksa Nyonya (叻沙 - 喇沙) at Precious Old China - 04:19
7) Indian Food in Kuala Lumpur at Restoran Yusoof Dan Zakhir - 05:05
8) Jalan Petaling Street Night and Flea Market in Chinatown (茨厂街 - 茨廠街) - 07:13
9) Petronas Towers (Menara Petronas) - 07:26
10) KLCC Park (Taman KLCC) - 07:37
11) Lake Symphony at KLCC - 07:42
12) Suria KLCC Shopping Mall - 07:46
13) Jalan Alor Night Market for Street Food - 08:06
14) Batu Caves (பத்து மலை) Hindu Shrine - 10:31
15) Merdeka Square (Dataran Merdeka - Independence Square) - 12:00
16) Sultan Abdul Samad Building (باڠونن سلطان عبدالصمد - Bangunan Sultan Abdul Samad ) - 12:00
17) Muzium Muzik (Museum Music) and National History Museum (Muzium Sejarah Nasional) - 12:20
18) Muzium Tekstil Negara (National Textile Museum) - 12:45
19) Kuala Lumpur City Gallery (KL City Gallery) - 12:48
20) Milo and Roti for Breakfast in Kuala Lumpur - 13:30
21) Nasi Lemak - National Dish of Malaysia - 15:30
22) Kuala Lumpur Tower (Menara Kuala Lumpur - 吉隆坡塔 - KL Tower) - 15:40
23) National Museum of Malaysia (Muzium Negara) and Malay Ethnographic Museum (Muzium Etnografi Melayu) and Orang Asli Crafts Museum - 15:49
24) National Mosque of Malaysia (Masjid Negara Malaysia - مسجد نݢارا - 国家清真寺 - தேசிய பள்ளிவாசல்) - 15:59
25) KL Metro, Rapid Transit and LRT - 16:05

Enjoy your visit with us. Welcome to Kuala Lumpur!

Monday, December 9, 2019

Miss Universe 2019 Best National Costume fiasco

Miss Universe Malaysia Shweta Sekhon did not win the Best National Costume at the 68th Miss Universe 2019 pageant in Atlanta. Miss Universe Philippines, Gazini Ganados is the winner of the Miss Universe 2019 National Costume contest.

But Miss Malaysia's costume was showcased at the pageant (which could possibly have caused the misunderstanding) but let's take a look at this creation. The costume is aptly called 'A Peranakan Indulgence' which was inspired by the Peranakan or Baba Nyonya community’s rich bridal traditions.

Peranakans are descended from Chinese settlers who arrived in the Malay Archipelago between the 15th and 17th centuries. The communities are mostly found in Penang and Malacca and south in Singapore.

When asked by host Steve Harvey about her costume, Shweta said Nyonya people are descendants of “mixed marriage between the Malays and the Chinese”.

“The wings here define the tail of the goldfish which they believe is a sign of prosperity.”

Weighing a hefty 28 kilogrammes, the costume features songket, Nyonya batik and trays of colourful Nyonya delights such as onde-onde, kueh koci, ang ku and kueh talam.

It was designed by Taiping-born fashion designer Carven Ong, who is known and loved for his bridal creations since 1991.

“Oh my God, I really can’t believe,” exclaimed Ong when contacted by Malay Mail.

Ong said he received the good news from Miss Universe Malaysia Organisation national director Datin Elaine Daly over a phone call.

Ong’s creations can also be seen in the 2018 rom-com hit Crazy Rich Asians.

Miss Universe Philippines Best National Costume winner..

The Miss Universe 2019 pageant was on Sunday, with 90 women competing for the title at Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta. The title ultimately went to Zozibini Tunzi of South Africa.

(All images are from

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Billie Eilish, Ladies & Gentlemen..

Have you seen this video? (Psst..647 million views and counting!)

Must watch..

Billie Eilish is a 17-year-old singer - who was also recently named Billboard's Woman of the Year.

The 'Bad Guy' hitmaker (above video) has enjoyed a successful year and has seen her bag her first ever Grammy nominations as well as performing at an awards show for the first time when she took to the stage at the American Music Awards (AMAs) on Sunday. She picked up awards for New Artist of the Year and Favourite Alternative Rock Artist at the AMAs

Here's a little bit more of Billie Eilish from Ellen DeGeneres' interview..