Skulls, beading & leopard…oh my!

Yesterday I attended the Sydney Rock ‘n’ Roll & Alternative Markets…so natch, had to throw a rockin’ outfit together.

In Kuala Lumpur I found a fantastic mesh top with large scale skull face on the front. With metallic beaded detailing on the eyes and nose, it’s quite effective…who’dathunk KL would have gothy gear like this? It’s from Parkson in the fabulous Pavilion mall, and the label is Elyze - believe me, they have some really cool stuff.  And it only cost 108 ringgit - which is AUD$33!

Since it was still pretty cold here yesterday I threw on a black skivvie underneath, along with my Sass & Bide Black Rat leggings and a studded miniskirt. A Topshop metallic leopard boyfriend jacket & studded cuff rounded off the ensemble. Oh, and let’s not forget my fave pointy leopard boots.

Elyze skull top & Topshop jacket  gothic beaded skull top

The left pic shows the front detail of the face a bit better, while the right shows MY face a bit more. I used a zingy yellow-green on my eyelid, with a browny-grey in the crease:

goth studded skull top 

The eye make-up is a bright shadow duo from L’Oreal, from their High Intensity Pigment or HIP range. The set is called “Riotous” – I like it! The green is a moody chartreuse and the grey/brown is a sludgy mud colour that goths, deathrockers and psychobilly chicks alike will love for its swampy quality.

It’s a nice change from black eyeshadow that I can use in the daytime & still have a smoky eye. Better still, I got the set in a reduced-price bin at my local chemist – score! You’ve always gotta keep your eyes out for a bargain ;) At $5 it was definitely “worth it”.

 

Riotous eyeshadowRiotous eyeshadow

I can honestly say most things I bought this time around are getting worn (or will be in the summer). I’ll do a small haul post soon, showing some of the gloriously coloured bags I bought, as well as shoes and clothes. While the buys from Topshop or New Look are no different in price to home, the local fashions and make-up items are most definitely cheaper.

Have you scored any bargains recently, at home or overseas?

Connecting with yourself through travel

Why do we travel?

I think it comes down to how it makes us feel. Travel yanks us out of our routines, which may be mind-numbing. While much of our life is lived in auto-pilot, changing our routine and actual place on the planet makes us more inclined to be self-reflective and aware of our emotions.

What joy there is in gazing on a perfect red flaming sunset, as the oozing ruby ball melts leisurely over azure waters. Or walking along a deserted beach as the sun shines down upon our bare skin. Or perhaps it’s the bracing feel of crisp, chilled air on our face as we look out on endless miles of snow. Perhaps it’s the pungent smell of an asian fishmarket that gets you going,  the cacophanous din of a Moroccan market, the adrenaline thrill of climbing a mountain or scoring a great bargain.

Whatever it is, there is something in these experiences that just makes us feel ALIVE. It connects ourselves with ourselves.

What is it about travel that makes YOU feel alive?

When I was on Tioman Island 10 days ago, I felt my heart swell when I looked upon the ocean as I walked down the coast road. I felt euphoric as I watched a spectacular sunset, whilst cradling my first beer of the night.  I almost swooned as the last rays of light subsided on the horizon, and hundreds of bats flew majestically across the sky. Truly, all of these experiences are etched in my memory.

Ahhh…. There will be more posts on Tioman Island coming up, as well as Singapore and Kuala Lumpur. But for now, Tioman holds the strongest sense memories of this holiday for me.

What are some of your fondest travel memories?

I got new hair extensions in Singapore!

Yes, I got long wavy hair extensions installed when I was in Singapore. Getting exte’s is a common thing for gyaru’s, but I’m  not really “gal”. The one time I had it done previously was in Australia, and for a LOT more. So, extes in Singapore.  I think it’s a rite of passage or something, like getting your hair braided in Bali (but hopefully more tasteful looking).

I researched and found that the main names coming up were Angel Xin, Vain, Milly’s, and H & C Carnival. In the end, I just trotted off to the Far East Plaza near Orchard Road, and took my chances.  On the 3rd floor there are various beauty salons, and I kept wandering past a few of them, eventually heading in to Vain Hair & Beauty. The main shop is seen below:

 …and the one I went into was just opposite, at shop 140

Vain Hair extensions Singapore

200 extensions would be $100, or 400 for $200. I ended up getting 400 (or so they told me). Although I still have a lot of blue hair, my roots and a good 6-8 inches are my natural dark brown, and so they matched the extes more or less to that. (I think they could’ve gone a little darker actually, but it’s ok). Here are the halfway and completed shots.

 

And from the front? I tried a few self-camera shots back in the hotel room:

 

I ended up trimming one of the sides that was hanging down longer at the front, but overall I’m pretty pleased with them. I think they look quite natural, being wavy, and now “I can haz mermaid hair”!  I feel very girly swishing the wavy wisps over my shoulder. So waddya reckon, eh?

Yeah…not bad!

I can see this will work very well when I wear gothic fashion or gyaru fashion…and definitely saves me time by not having to straighten my own hair. It looks better the wavier it is, blending in more with the wavy extensions. Even in humid weather as in KL, it looks good. I’m sold! If you’re ever in Singapore, go ye to the 3rd floor of the Far East Plaza and check it out:

Vain Beauty
Far East Plaza
No. 14 Scotts Rd
#03-113 or #03-140
Singapore  228213
+6597115290

What about you? Have you ever had long hair extensions installed, either at home, or overseas? Were you pleased with the results?

Returning to Penang

It’s weird going back to a place you’ve been previously. There’s the thrill as you remember how good last time was, combined with some nervousness that it won’t be as good this time round. Add to that, I was travelling with hubby Dom this time, and it was with some trepidation that I introduced him to my beloved Penang.

I needn’t have worried.

Penang – home of arguably the best food in Malaysia, historic shophouses and grand colonial mansions, with harbour views (if you have the right hotel) and 24 hour service be it street food, convenience stores or curry houses – what’s not to like?

After a long day’s travel from Kapilai, including a few hours stopover and walkabout in Kota Kinabalu, we were both ravenous by the time we hit Penang. Dumping our bags in the hotel, we hurried to the Red Garden, an open-air hawker centre nearby. You may remember my post on Luscious Laksa in Penang from last year, where I talked about the various foods there – if you haven’t, check it out!

I had the Assam Laksa that is (as I mentioned in last years Penang post), not based on a coconut broth as normal laksa is, but a sweet/sour combo of pineapple juice, tamarind and more. We shared a plate of assorted satay sticks with peanut sauce, and Dom had frogs legs in garlic. I found the laksa fishier tasting than last year’s ones, and not quite as delicious as I remembered – but the satay and frogs legs were YUM!

As you can see, they were washed down with a cold Tiger beer or three, and after a good meal and refreshing bevvie, it was time to hit the sack. And what a sack! This time we stayed at the Cititel on Jalan Penang, and it is very modern and stylish, with fab views over the harbour.

What we were looking forward to the next morning was having a roti canai and teh tarik at the Malay/Indian place just a few doors up, the Restoran Jaya. I mentioned this in last years post, the badly punned “Currying Favour in Georgetown“.

Oh, the roti was so flaky and beautiful, with a lovely tasty curry, and Dom’s lamb-filled roti was delicious too. Um, we drank our teh tariks before I thought to get a pic – but you know what a cuppa tea looks like. Dom loved the place as much as me, and we returned the next morning as well. I can highly recommend this place for all sorts of food – and it’s open 24 jam! That means 24 hours in Malay – and it means you can get a feed any time, day or night. Gotta love Malaysia! I didn’t get the street address, but it’s on Jalan Penang, right opposite Kafe 78.

A little lie down was in order after our hearty brekkie, as we had a big day ahead of us, fitting in seeing the sites of old Penang, as well as eating some great Curry Mee and Char Kway Teow (yes, at the angry aunty’s famous CKT place).  But that can wait for another post – all this food writing is making me hungry!!

Have you been to Penang? What are your fave food places – especially for breakfast and roti canai?

Big night out at Zouk nightclub in KL

Just over a week ago we flew into Kuala Lumpur and had a whirlwind kinda night. Tired as we were (I’d done night shift the night before the flight), we had a mission. I’d arranged to meet up with local riot grrl and blogger Jessicat, and a big night was surely in store.  Jess was an absolute sweetheart and offered to pick us up and show us some KL nightlife – as it turned out, to Zouk!

On the way in the car we talked about Malaysian & Singaporean bloggers and their liberal usage of wtf, fml, and even fhl (fuck his/her life) and fol (fuck our lives). ROFL. Then I learned a little about when to say “lah” and when to say “lor” in Malayenglish. Local vocab is very important, lah (or is that lor?)

Not to cast aspersions on her driving or anything (!), but we went across live lanes of oncoming traffic, made illegal and last minute right-hand turns, got to the car-park and drove around twice before finding the driveway to go down to the next floor…I tell you, it’s good that I was too busy chatting – Dom was shitting himself!  It was the first of many things that led Dom and I to christen Jess as “ditzy”.  Yes, we taught her a new word. I think she’s blonde on the inside – and I think she knows it too (don’t you dearie? Love you!)

It was midnight when we got there, so just enough time to check out the local lol-lok stall and have a few bites before hitting the club. Lok-lok is basically an array of things like fish balls, meat etc on sticks that you cook in boiling broth for a few minutes before dipping in sauce and scoffing.  Not bad, but no match for the curry mee, satays, roti canai’s etc I was looking forward to.  However, a girl has to have a lining on her stomach before drinking, or else she may end up less than ladylike by the end of the night ;)

Are we ready to hit the club, kids? Dom’s not too sure, but Jess and I are keen :)  Yes, you may have noticed a distinct lack of lashes on my part. I’d neglected to pack mascara, and with Jess already chomping at the bit for us to hit the town, there was no time to put on my fake lashes, dang it. BUT circle lenses cover a multitude of sins, lah?

Zouk is a mega club (sister club to Singapore’s Zouk) with various rooms paying different music – there’s the Velvet Underground, Phuture, Arista, Barsonic and the Terrace Bar. Jess, being the local it girl that she is, got us in for free, saving us 58 ringgit each – yeehaw! I tell you though, it’s on the alcohol here in Malaysia that you’ll spend your money – it’s the same prices we pay in Australia, despite the food being 5 to 10 times cheaper. We discovered that it is actually cheaper at Zouk to buy five beers, than to buy three. Three cost 85 ringgit but five cost 67 – don’t ask me why! We learned our lesson after the first round. CHEERS!

So we checked out the various rooms, and I loved the kooky decor ( if not the music, which was pretty r & b/techno based).

  

I think Barsonic was where we had the best time – there just lovely friendly people there, and a lot of cool hipsters too! Like these guys, who turned out to be designers.

Our fave bit was when Smashing Pumpkins came on – at last!! Indie music!!! Not for long, but it was really nice while it lasted. The kids seemed to like it too – so why don’t they play more indie music at clubs here? It’s a mystery. We walked around to see all the rooms, but man, was it packed!! Lookit:

Despite the fact we were just gonna have a few drinks and head on home, we somehow managed to stay until lights up, which found us chatting to these guys from Singapore:

Stumbling outside we found Jess and her friend…and decided it was time to eat again!! We went to a nearby food place (even though it was after 4 by this time) and I had a delicious roti canai and teh tarik. YUM!  Dom’s biryani and the girls’ noodles were equally delish. God bless Malaysia and its food!  Dom and I finally hit the sack at 5.30am – that is, 8.30am Sydney time. YUP – it had been a LOOOOONG day and night!!

Thanks Jess for showing us around and introducing us to your friends. See you next time we’re in KL – as long as we’ve had a good long sleep first!!