Albatrosses and Orcs

We landed in New Zealand at Christchurch, and the temperature was 32 degrees.  We just accepted it, having become used to Malaysian and Australian weather – but it turned out to be a fluke, and as we drove south to Dunedin the temperature dropped by more than 20 degrees, until it was just ten above…

Doing shots in Tasmania

This is a shot – Tassie style – It’s an oyster shot – – sake with wasabi, pickled ginger and a plump, fresh Tasmanian oyster … delicious! The seafood here is so good – – I devoured these six scallops cooked with brioche crumbs and herbs in about three minutes, in a little restaurant on…

Published
Categorised as Australia

Melbourne: trees in skirts

Having spent a few days in Melbourne, I feel just that little bit hipper and cooler.  I’ve been hanging out in bars with uber-cool names like … which has a series of unusual collages on the walls – And Melbourne’s the sort of city where you can get a Shiatsu massage in the market –…

Published
Categorised as Australia

What a whopper!

To wrap up my time in Malaysia, we did a little strawberry picking up in the Cameron Highlands – – it must be the unique climate that makes them grow so big … The Highlands are ideal for growing tea, and in some places there are tea bushes as far as the eye can see…

Published
Categorised as Malaysia

Krabi … but not Crabby

After a hectic Christmas day at the pool – and an exhausting evening posing around the Christmas tree at the Majestic Hotel – We were definitely in need of some R & R on Boxing Day, so headed off to the beach in Thailand. Krabi was not quite what I was expecting.  Despite the severe…

Published
Categorised as Thailand

Street food in Taiwan

When you tell anyone in SE Asia that you’re going to Taiwan, they roll their eyes ecstatically and say, ‘Ooh – the food!’ So when I arrived in Taipei, getting to grips with the local food was my number one priority. I really like walking food tours, where the tour guide walks you around an…

Published
Categorised as Taiwan

Crazy Rich Asian Parents

It’s not just Singapore that has Crazy Rich Asians – the Chinese Malaysian parents in KL are up there with the best of them. The most ridiculous thing I’ve been asked to date by a parent, was whether I thought it would be a good idea for a five-year-old to start learning Latin ‘because it…

Published
Categorised as Malaysia

Wedding number one …

As I have recently learnt, having just the one wedding when you get married is SO last year – in fact a friend in KL is having three, so I wasn’t surprised when Sam and Alice announced that they would be having two weddings. Wedding number one was yesterday – a beautiful sunny autumn day…

Published
Categorised as England

Feeding my addiction

Mindful that I will be leaving KL at the end of the year, and will be cut off from my new favourite foods, I put out a plea on the local residents Facebook page – I got a few suggestions for using salted egg powder instead of the real thing, which just wouldn’t be the…

Published
Categorised as Malaysia

A quandary …

What do you do when your guide on a walking tour turns out to be an obsessive nose-picker – – and then, when you get to a steep step down onto a narrow path between two rice paddies – – he offers you his hand? Do you … a) say breezily, ‘no thank you, I’m…

Published
Categorised as Indonesia