A heart crushing real life story : Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, Phnom Penh Cambodia

Yeah I am back again from my annual MIA culture. 3 months, not a very long period of time but a lot of things did change. There’s something I’ve forgo and there’s something new coming into my life. Good things come around when you least expected it, guess it sum up my 3 months back there is a quite positive one. I wanted to share a very romantic place to visit in Taiwan but i accidentally bought the wrong hard disk out so next time I guess. Finished reading one of my favourite and heart aching book about the history of Phnom penh so why not just share it first. Enjoy the read people. Hi Puddin!

This is a very depressing post. A real life story that haunts my heart for nearly a year before I decided to share. Every time when I am trying to write about it, I can’t help but to avoid. To avoid going through the feelings I had when I visited that place. It is a painful but meaningful visit. The day when we visited the place, it was nothing but silence and doubts on how humankind can be so cruel and merciless. Every piece of the story, every edges of the building, it lies the blood and prayers to survive.

DSC01100It was a school. A normal high school. Situated at the centre of Phnom Penh. Strategic, or perhaps too strategic. 

This harrowing history accommodated a very short period of time. 3 years. The tragic 3 years from 1976 to 1979 when the Khmer Rouge ruled Cambodia. Khmer Rouge was ruled by a Cambodian revolutionary named Pol Pot who later referred the country as the Democratic Kampuchea. I was shared during the ruling of the Khmer Rouge, everyone was evacuated from their home. They were told by the new government that the act of migration was to avoid the bombing from the Americans. But this act of transformation changed the fate of the Cambodians. Most of them would never get to meet their loves one any more. Money is just a valueless paper. During the 3 years of the Khmer Rouge regime, it’s just purely tortures, interrogations, and executions. 

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Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum was formerly a high school which was then converted to a security prison 21 (S21) where most of the party related or educated personnel like government servants, teachers, doctors, academics, students, monks or even the innocents one were captured and tortured. It was best known as the torture chamber in Cambodia. More than 1.7 millions lives were taken during the 3 years of Khmer Rouge Regime. 

DSC01031 There were building A,B,C and D. Building A consists of the bigger rooms for the higher ranked government servants. Building B consists of the Galleries, Building C has the smaller cells for the prisoners and Building D holds the memorabilia including the instruments of torture. 

DSC01024
DSC01028 DSC01030This is one of the room in Building A. A classroom, converted into a torture chamber where blood stains were still visible until today. A steel bed with slackers to chain their prisoners. Some were tortured in the room until death. Some were brought to somewhere for execution.

They photographed every prisoner when they were brought in and when they were dead. 

DSC01038 DSC01050There were no words to describe the fall of humankind. The evil in them to how they have treated their same kind. 

DSC01059 DSC01061Classrooms, transferred to cells. Every prisoner was only given 4 small spoons of watered porridge. Legs were chained with the slackers; some prisoners will have to eat the faeces and the urines from their inmates. Some were starve to death, which will be the least painful way to die. 

DSC01063This is the cell of one of the survivors Chum Mey. 

DSC01055 Wired corridors were built to prevent the prisoners to commit suicide by jumping off the building after a few successful cases. 

Galleries that holds the photographs of the prisoners.

DSC01042 DSC01052Look carefully at the picture. The tag was pinned directly through the skin. But what is pain as compared to the series of interrogations that they have been through? 

DSC01073Photos of deaths. Every prisoners will take turns and brought to interviews for their skills, their background, or any information of parties involved. Even if they have nothing much to provide, they will still be interrogate. The common interrogations will be pouring acids to the nose, twitching nipples out, slicing skin, heavy punching until the skulls were broken, slice open the body and have your organs removed without any anaesthetic, some were attached to the intravenous pump and pump every drop of the blood causing them to bleed to death. These were to test how long a human can survive with all the blood was drained. Even when I was writing this, I feel disgusted.

Some of the skilful prisoners like the 2 survivors were taken to paint out the process of torturing. Such as below.

DSC01080 DSC01081 DSC01085Devices of interrogating. 

DSC01034 DSC01035This, supposed to be a playground of the school were then converted to a torture devices. Prisoners whom were passed out during the interrogation will then be hung upside down and dipped in the urine alike chemical to wake them up for more interrogation. 

Almost 20,000 lives were taken here before they ran out of place to bury the corpse and that is when the killing field were discovered to execute more human beings. (will be updated soon).

The last few coffins were the last few corpses to be found in the prison after the fall of Khmer Rouge. 

DSC01092_p DSC01097 DSC01098I was glad I have the chance to actually talk to 2 of the survivors of the Genocide S21 prison. They have been through so much, went through years of counselling before they were able to stand out and live their own live again. 

There will always be loss of lives in every revolution. But what is more sickening and heartless than this? A brutal experience that not only haunts the civilians but also the country. Making the greatest impact in destroying the strength of humanity. 

DSC01109Tuol Sleng buildings were preserved as how they were left after the Khmer Rouge were driven out. The museum is open for public, it was served as the memorial for the Cambodians as well as an important educational site. I spent weeks studying the history of Cambodia before I went, spent 4 days venturing into the actual tragic places and talked to the related beings about their encounter, ending my Cambodia trip knowing a little bit more about the world and a little less about myself.

To the victims who sacrificed during the Khmer Rouge Regime. May your souls rest in peace.

 

 

Penang Food Guide : Dim Sum House VS Prosperous Dim Sum Restaurant

Apart from the Char Kuey Tiao, the Loh Mee, the Har Mee and the Cendol, dim sum is most probably the next thing people will go craving for especially during the early mornings or even high tea. I spent two days of my beautiful mornings hunting for dim sum around Penang, or perhaps, around Macalister Road.

Dim Sum House and Prosperous Dim Sum is quite near to each other. Dim Sum House is opposite Red Rock Hotel and Prosperous Dim Sum Restaurant is behind Red Rock Hotel. So let’s see what they have to offer!

Dim Sum House

DSC00019Both of them share the similar open concept restaurant theme, with dim sum carts around and different stations catering different types of dim sum.

DSC00020 DSC00022 DSC00023Need not to say much, lets the picture do the talking. 

DSC00029Steamed pork ribs. This is always my number one choice and the must order in all the dim sum session~ Not too bad. A lil bit greasy as compared to others but very flavourful

DSC00030Braised chicken feet. Another must order. I like their version of braised chicken feet because it is as though all the sauce and marinates had infused in it. Every bite is a bomb!

DSC00027Prawn Siew Mai. Not too bad. Nothing to shout about

DSC00034Egg yolk pork siew mai. Its just a nice siew mai. That’s all I can say. 

DSC00033Prawn and pork wraps in tangy sauce. It’s probably a lil bit too meaty after so many siew mai. But this one with a tangy sauce definitely stood out.

DSC00032Lo Mai kai aka Glutinous rice wrapped in lotus leave. I don’t normally take lo mai kai even the one in Hong Kong. But the Penang version of Lo Mai Kai is quite good. Not only every bit of rice is soaked in the flavours, you can even taste the smoky smell from the lotus leaf. yums!

DSC00031Fried meat roll. I’m not a fried food person but le bro say its quite good.

DSC00026We had xiao long bao as well but it is horrible. Not even worth to be up here. hahahahaha! So guys, avoid xiao long bao at dim sum house unless you wanna eat a siew mai alike xiao long bao!

Prosperous Dim Sum Restaurant

DSC00151 DSC00127 DSC00128 DSC00130For me, I think Prosperous Dim Sum has more varieties. Happy mode straight away when you saw what they have to offer! Lets start! 

DSC00141As usual, Pork ribs!! Dim sum feast will never be perfect without my pork ribs! I like the pork ribs here because its less greasy but as flavourful still.

DSC00135Chicken Feet is awesome as well. Marination is spot on. The meat around the claw is so tender it literally just fall off the bones once you bite it. Oh nom nom!

DSC00136Lo mai kai is a yums too! I like how generous they are with the ingredients for lo mai kai. Mushrooms, meat, sausages. It makes the lo mai kai taste even better!

DSC00137Prawn rice rolls aka chee cheong fun. Its up to snuff but honestly, I still think Guangzhou and Hong Kong had the best chee cheong fun!

DSC00139Pork belly Steamed Bun! The steamed bun is fluffy and sweet but the pork belly needs a lil bit more time to braise it. Kinda tough for me. 

DSC00140Steamed pork stomach with herbs. This one is one of my favourite too! The whole dish is so light with a perfect touch of the herb aroma. I just cant stop drinking the soup!

DSC00142Steamed pork meat with rice rolls. Not my favourite. Too heavy for me.

DSC00145Sweet and sour pork roll. I love how they served the fried meat rolls with the sweet and sour sauce. It balanced up the meaty part of the meat roll. 

DSC00144Char siew pastry. Way more delicious than I thought. The pastry is buttery and flaky and the char siew inside is tender and juicy. Not too sweet, it compliments the pastry just well!

DSC00147Fried Wanton with Mayo. Not too bad!

DSC00149Steamed three layer pork with yam! Nothing to shout about.

DSC00148Steamed egg with prawns, fins and yolks! I’m loving it! Just cant get away from eggs huh me! Yum yum yum!

DSC00132 DSC00133These were our orders of the day! So fulfilling! I personally like Prosperous dim sum more than Dim Sum House. What say u?

 

Dim Sum House : 63, Jalan Macalister, 10450 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia

Prosperous Dim Sum Restaurant :  202-G5, Aboo Siti Lane, 10400 George Town, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia

 

Oriental Park Kolo Mee Kuching : Some say its the best?

A lot of people claimed that Oriental Park Kolo Mee is one of the very few authentic one in Kuching. Some say its the best among all Kolo Mee.. But what do you think?

I’ve always heard good things about Oriental Park Kolo Mee. It was situated at the Old Cathay Cinema which most of us have no idea of. Nevermind, I have attached a google map in the end of the post. 

So one find day I finally went there for a try. Excited with all the good comments and patiently waiting for my bowl of goodness.

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DSC00015 DSC00016Oriental Park Kolo Mee is famous for the Char Siew. Hence, it means that their Kolo Mee Red aka Kolo Mee with char siew sauce is more popular than the original ones. 

DSC00014They roasted their own char siew so I guess this is one of the element that keeps the customers coming back for more? Personally I don’t fancy kolo mee with char siew sauce. I prefer my kolo mee to be the original white one, but what’s the point of not trying their famous kolo mee red right?

So we ordered 3 types to try. Oh. For your information, wanton lovers like me, they don’t sell wantons.

DSC00003We ordered the kolo mee red. Curly noodles

DSC00007The straight cut kolo mee red.

DSC00002And the curly noodles without the Red.

DSC00010I would say, ITS NOT MY BOWL OF KOLO MEE. HAHAHAHA! I’m sorry you are too sweet for me. Sadly I prefer the kolo mee without the red sauce. I like my noodles to be more al dente. I think I just don’t enjoy very sweet kolo mee. Or maybe I put too much expectation on it.

DSC00008However, please go try it out! I might not like it but tonnes of people love their kolo mee. It has been one of the population’s favourite since N years ago. I might be the odd one out so, even though its not my favourite, please go try it out and judge yourselves! 😀

Guangzhou Food & Travel : The very “meh” New Year Count Down at Canton Tower, Shangxiajiu Street 广州上下九街。广州塔:小蛮腰。

Another post on Guangzhou. Its gonna be a short one because I only spend around 4 days in Guangzhou. Not the overwhelming best experience but definitely a memorable and happy one. First check in China, Guangzhou, I am very happy with that! You make it love China. Tried to cover most of the specialty food in Guangzhou but because of time limitations and lotsa shopping spree incurred, I can only do my best to eat as much in a very short period of time. Noms!

DSC00050_pGood Morning Guangzhou!

DSC00045I woke up early in the morning despite the short period of time we had in Guangzhou. Tried out the food in hotel and it is a huge mistaken. My comments : Just simply eat out. Hotel Food Sucks.

DSC00062 DSC00072_p DSC00080So one of the place I spend a lot of time shopping and eating will be the Shangxiajiu street. It is a very well known shopping street for the locals as well as for the tourist. Tents and vendors filled up the place as early as 11am.

DSC00051-vert DSC00092 DSC00094 DSC00096 DSC00103 DSC00123Like Beijing Road street market, they offers a lot of discount. Discount up to 90% and I bought around 9 pairs of shoes including winter boots with the price range of RM15 to RM40. What say u?

DSC00090 DSC00095For guys, the shoes, the bags, clothings, you can find all sorts of item you need at Shangxiajiu Street. For ladies, earrings, shoes, winter clothes, I don’t know man! Too many to offer. But personally I used to wear a few brands of clothings only, that’s why I seldom shop for clothes in street market. But what I am crazy shopping for are shoes and earrings! God knows how much I bought!

DSC00108 DSC00126Not only that, street food vendors are piling up along the street. 

DSC00110 DSC00112_pI had curry fish balls and BBQ squid. Yums! 

DSC00089-tileTime for lunch, we tried out one of the commonly seen chinese food franchise restaurant in China. Not too impressive but the chilli pork ribs is quite okay.

DSC00118And so we continue our hardcore shopping spree. Came across this highly recommended coffee place and so we tried. Its always nice to rest a while for coffee. There’s a lot of cafes around but I saw this particular one in Google and so here we are

DSC00115 DSC00116Not a coffee fans, I have no idea how to judge a good coffee but their coffee is quite nice. At least smooth and fragrant for me.

pageFor dinner, we stumbled upon a canton restaurant. Settled our dinner here before we head back to hotel to have a rest for count down later. I cant get enough of the beef offal stew so I ordered a small portion for myself. So good I must say! Soup is tasty as well. Noodles was alright and the roasted duck is delicious, crispy skin and juicy meat, that’s what we are looking for right? Overall rating is quite high!

DSC00159Rest time!! Our hotel is just in front of the pearl river so every night we will have this magnificent view. Nap for 2 hours and finally heading out to the Canton Tower for New Year Count Down!!

As usual it was New Year Eve! Road is crazily packed with cars and human beings, we headed out around 9pm and its so jam! Stuck in the taxi for about 1.5 hours because the cab driver decided to drop us somewhere else and ask us to walk. 

DSC00175-horzIt’s a long walk like another 1 hour but because the road is packed with human beings, everyone walk with you so it doesn’t feel tiring. Grab a local beer and off we go to Canton Tower!

DSC00230_p-horzI have no idea how far it is but after all the squuezing and running and climbing, we were finally there! Count down was VERY disappointing. WHY?

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1.) They don’t have any emcee to host the events and the counting down and yet that place is crazily packed like you can’t even breathe!

2.) Everyone was looking at their clock then suddenly the clock put out the words : HAPPY NEW YEAR. Everyone was like WTF?? Where is the 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1?? Then people around us start to curse like.. OMG i came so far for this and that’s it? And people started to communicate to each other by complaining how terrible the count down is. 

DSC00257 DSC00262Well, I put an effort to count down at different country every year and by far, this is the “worst” one. So 3 hours squeezing through the crowd and less than 5 mins of happiness. But I enjoy the process so I’m fine with it. We ended up having a drink below our hotel and met 4 new friends from other part of china and so, having a beef offal steamboat together as supper at 5am before we called it a day. Extraordinary experience for me and I actually enjoy it! 

 

 

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