Sunday, June 8, 2008

KB: Revisited

I jumped at the opportunity to go to KB recently. My daughter made necessary arrangements like getting cheap Air Asia fare and a fairly cheap hotel . And we got the best deal (through the internet) Juita Inn offered RM 178 for three persons plus three breakfast. Since then we were counting days to revisit KB ( we left in 1990 after staying there for 5 years )

We arrived about 11 at night tired but excited ,we rushed to our room ( as usual to throw our luggages and to sprawl on the bed ,the habit my two daughters inherit from me ) to plan for tomorrow ,what to eat and where to go.As the door swung open the damp smell greeted us , to our dismay the room looked like it has never been refurbished since the 90s . We finally fell asleep at the wee hour of the morning breathing the damp air accompanied by the air cond that sounded like flight 747 about to land.

In the morning we woke up giddy headed but it was compensated with a good breakfast ,especially the porridge ,yep ,to die for. During breakfast we made plan to move to a better hotel and my daughter got out of this world deal , a much, much better place with a very reasonable price (through a friend).

Of course our plan was what to eat first-- nasi kerabu with ayam percik, nasi dagang ikan tongkol, laksam, nasi air Mak Su Nab, nasi kukus Zakini---and also to buy jala mas to take home for my daughter's friend. Not to mention a must buy keropok leko and keropok kering ,sambal daging, rempah kuzi specially made by Mak Nik Selamah, who is my dearest mak angkat who sells all kinds of rempah in and out of Kelantan state. Also not to mention her murtabak that is really superb!

My two daughters wanted to visit their former primary school that was SRK Zainab 2 at Jalan Telipot but first we went round to have a peep at our former house at Jalan Raja Dewa, and it was as beautiful as when we left it. Both of them were very excited but of course we can't linger too long. I could see my daughters were so happy to see their alma mater, relived their memories of the school, their friends, and how they went to school on a trishaw that was being modified to fit in 8 to 10 primary students. My youngest daughter, who is now 26 years old, told me that during those trishaw days, she was always pushed to the very corner of the plank of the trishaw because she was a pint-sized girl. I felt sorry for her and quite angry with myself cos I never asked them whether they're comfortable or not. But compared to me they're luckier- well, I walked to school !

Then on we visited a house in Kubang Krian, a house where they used to spend time. It belonged to a dear family friend of ours. The owners have already migrated to KL (the whole family) and they hired a caretaker for the house. It is such a beautiful house, a mini palace that was, they bought from one of the royalties way back in the 70's. My daughters were very excited as they tour the house and still remember the very sofa used to be Uncle Wan's favourite and the corner they used to play during that time . Of course our family friend scolded us for not staying in their house but it won't be the same without them. We'll miss them in KB even though we are all in KL now.

The next venue is of course Pasar Siti Khadijah , my daughters had a long shopping list with them, and the main item was to buy tudung bawal among others. They bought tudung like there's no tomorrow, bought some for themselves, for the auntie, the other daughter bought for the in laws, bought batik kaftan for the mother in law and jubah for the father in law. Bargaining ,haggling finally they thought they got the best deal and happily part with their money. The art of berniaga in Kelantan is so unique you can't find it elsewhere (in the world) ---after the transaction the taukey kedai presented her a piece of kain batik Jawa as a goodwill token for the money well-spent.

We haven't that much luck in eating, we were overcharged at Zakini Nasi Kukus. The cost of a half plate of rice with a piece of curry ikan tenggiri, two pieces of paru, salad and a piece of ayam percik including 3 glasses of plain water set us back at RM19. To make things worst, the whole meal was not even hot (despite the name Nasi Kukus that should be steaming hot). The memory of the food that we used to love didn't turn out as we expected it to be.

We went to the new foodcourt adjacent to the pasar Siti Khadijah to eat laksam and were happy to know that this replaced the old one. The old foodcourt was dirty and congested. The new foodcourt consist of ground floor for dry food like dodol, ketupat, tapai, etak, jala mas, buah tanjung and others. Considering it is a dry food area, it should be clean and spotless. The same goes to the eating place upstairs, which should be in tip top condition. However, the beautiful tiles and the floors looked like it has never been mopped! I hope Majlis Perbandaran Kota Bharu get some workers to clean the food area twice a day and invest in giant brushes and mops! Or else, it will loose the charm as a PASAR SITI KHADIJAH.