Local Heart, Global Soul

November 2, 2012

Feeling, Tasting and Seeing Harmony…

Filed under: FOOD,MALAYSIA,Melaka,PHOTOGRAPHY,Specialty,Traditional — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , ,

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

You are turning another page in my retrospective diary of our travels to New Zealand earlier this year.

We are now on our way back home  to the Netherlands but have a long stopover of almost a week in Singapore to visit with a fellow Foodie and good friend that I first met on the internet who I’ll call here by her internet nickname “Velvetine”.

Together we have made a side trip from Singapore and have taken a three hour bus trip to Melaka, Malaysia where we have  been visiting the Cheng Hoon Teng temple but now after waiting a while for one straggler in our group who was busy seeking her fortune with “lucky sticks”, we all spill out onto the street to start a walking tour and see the city centre.

The street we are on is  officially called  Jalan Tokong Besi  but it’s also known as “Harmony Street”  because on it and standing in harmony are the places of worship of the three main religions of Malaysia.

These consist of the Cheng Hoon Teng Temple that we have just visited, which was buit in 1645, and is the oldest chinese Temple in Malaysia. Just a short distance down the street is the Kampung Keling Mosque tht was built in 1868 and looks like no other mosque I have ever seen before.

It’s a tall tower of a building some six stories high, very square in shape and has a sight pagoda look to it, actually I asked the guide if it was a Japanese building and when she told me it was a mosque I was quite surprised. It’s a stunning piece of architecture, with pure simplicity that draws your eye straight up the tower to the top.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The last of the trio is the Sri Payyatha Vinayagar Moorthi Temple which, built in the late 1700’s is the  oldest Hindu temple in Malaysia but which sadly I didn’t manage to grab a photograph of.

I find it amazing that two of these building are the oldest of their type in all of Malaysia and that they are situated in the very same street… brilliant!

Don’t you just wish at all religions could so peacefully co-exist in their own “harmony streets” everywhere in the world as they do here?

Of course I’m captivated too by the street scenes all around us… there is so much to see.

The decorations for the upcoming Chinese New  Year,  street vendors, a freezer full of ice-cream  grabs the full attention of my children, and  for my lens too since these ice-creams are  egg-shaped and come in rounded clear plastic containers.

Then there was the table of durian sweets… but the one I really wished we could have had time to stop and try, a local speciality that our guide pointed out and explained: chicken rice balls, which consists of rice cooked in chicken stock and molded into balls. We are told that come evening time there will be a long queue outside this establishment for these rice balls,  touted as one of the best in Melaka are very popular with locals and tourists alike.

Darn, I wish we could have stayed longer… I want to try it all (ok, maybe not quite so fast on the durian… but those chicken rice balls were definitely calling me). Let’s take a look…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

6 Comments »

  1. The durian sweets aren’t that bad! They have a durian flavour to them, but they are actually quite sweet. The texture is kind of like jello – soft and chewy, just not as wobbly.

    Comment by Peggy Tee — November 2, 2012 @ 4:38 am | Reply

    • Peggy Tee,
      I’ve not quite had the courage to try durian yet… the hotel doesn’t let guests bring it back so I didn’t want to buy a whole one. next time when we are in S’pore with our friend “Velvetine” we will have to bit the bullet and give durian a try.

      Comment by kiwidutch — November 8, 2012 @ 9:35 pm | Reply

  2. Meeting up with internet friends is a fabulous experience. I’ve done it twice now and the more I do it, the more I want to do it!

    Comment by Tilly Bud - The Laughing Housewife — November 2, 2012 @ 9:04 am | Reply

    • Tilly,
      I’ve met up with some 10 or so internet friends now and every experience went well. Several in particular have become firm friends and two even moved in with us whist they job and house hunted ! It went so well they moved into the next street and we can wave to each other from our kitchen windows out the back LOL!
      We still cook together regularly too.
      “Velvetine”from Singapore has been on a big holiday with us recently in Europe… more on that soon (we had a BLAST!)

      Comment by kiwidutch — November 8, 2012 @ 9:32 pm | Reply

  3. Hi there! Velvetine here. I’ll put a trip to a Durian eatery down for your next trip here, how’s that? While we are planning trips, how about an extended stay in Malacca? Plenty to eat, photograph and see!

    Comment by velvetwriter — March 10, 2013 @ 11:08 am | Reply


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