Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Bookstores in Town: Jakarta and Vientiane

A book is every teachers' twin. We are all tasked to be handling books in the most time of the day and even when we reached home. But for me, I do not just dwell on text books and work books. I also read. Mostly fictional and literary books but I am so fond of books and reading of course. In my travels, I have always wandered into different book stores, whether its a major book store or just a small and privately owned shops.

Aksara is one of my favourite bookstores in Jakarta, Indonesia. I like it because they have a nice collection of books that are with different covers unlike in what you see in major book stores. Although they only carry a few collection, the way they have carefully laid down the books on tables and shelves are just terrific. They treated books as if it is a part of decoration of the store.

You can find Aksara at Level 5, Plaza Indonesia, Jalan MH Thamrin Kav, Jakarta Indonesia. You may click the link to access their main website.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

George Town Street Art

The existence of many artists nowadays show a challenge to them on how to be distinct and recognize among other pool of artist. I myself is a frustrated artist. Back in Primary school, I have two best friends who have really good hands in painting and drawing and I always join them in art competition. Much to my dismay, I always end up with crappy artworks. I even attended a Drafting Class in one of my elective during high school but my professor has never been attracted to any of my work. well I could not blame her, I guess even my mom would not like any of my work although I tried my best to really work on it. But before I ended that Drafting Class, I managed to pull off the best artwork I did which I considered still the best until now.

George Town, aside from being a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is also a town for artists and painters. I talked a shop lady and told me about this Lithuanian artist who lived in Penang for a while and did some street arts in and around Georgetown. Some local artists made their paintings as well filling the whole town with different arts painted on wall.

The Owl Museum at Penang Hill

Upon my quest to find places to visit in Penang for a short back packing trip, I found out that there, sitting on a heavenly place on top of a hill in the middle of that island, is a place I can definitely call Heaven. Well too much of my exaggeration, it is actually an Owl Museum. I have been fascinated with owls as always. I have a friend whom I share this fondness of collecting owl displays and crafts and I am just so glad that this museum existed in a place I was planning to visit unexpectedly.

The collection they have just made me envious as I only have about 20 owl figurines, art and crafts. I spent about almost 2 hours just to see the details of each of the displays that I terribly wish all belongs to me. Haha. But I am not that crazy so I managed to control myself. I am just so thankful taking pictures are allowed.

To get to the museum, one must travel to Ayer Itam vicinity, which is like in the middle of Penang Island and
take a funicular train (inclined train). it takes about 10 minutes to reach the top and upon reaching the main entrance, the Owl Museum is just about 5 minutes walk.

Review: The Daily Dose Cafe

I always make a list of places to go when I travel. Aside from the usual "tourist spots" that the place has to offer, I also make it a point to visit:

a. Local bookshops
b. Museums
c. Coffee Shop

In Georgetown, Penang, the town is thriving with restaurants and cafe especially those catering to local delicacy. But few really make it a point to find a good coffee shop. Penang is known for its Georgetown White Coffee although the coffee beans are not really cultivated in the town itself, the celebrate the process of making good white coffee. I have tasted and it is good but what I was looking for is a type of coffee shop that is hiding in one corner, brewing its own coffee concoctions and baking their own desserts. And so I found The Daily Dose Cafe. 

The Daily Dose Cafe

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Bookstores in Town: George Town, Penang

Shu Children Bookstore

Penang, as most people who knows this place, would always be regarded as a food haven. The place is famous for its local food such as Char Kway Teow and Laksa. I enjoyed their Char Kway Teow. It’s not too oily but still very tasty. Aside from its very famous food, Penang is also known for its capital, Georgetown, as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The town itself is filled with shop houses dating back to early 1900s. I love old towns and Georgetown is indeed mesmerizing and filled with an old feeling that you can hardly see now. Georgetown is also famous for its street art scattered all over the cemented and brick walls all around. As most travellers would go to Penang and see all these spots in and around Georgetown, I myself tried to search for more, some parts of the town that are sort of less travelled. When I visit a place, I try to find bookshops. It can be any bookshops like a big one or those small one that sells second hand books or just any ordinary books. Lucky for me, I found a children’s bookshop just along Jalan Masjid Kapitan Keling, Georgetown and the shop is called Shῡ. Shῡ is a Chinese word for Book. The shop is located in one of the traditional shop houses in Georgetown. The owner, Mr. Teo (if I heard and spelled it right), is a local and a retiree and converted this shop house into a small bookstore.