End of March 2008, I took a little time off to visit a dear friend whom I hadn't seen since 2002. Gosh, had it really been that long? Actually about 2 weeks earlier, I called Nore up for a chat. I hadn't seen or spoken to her in months, and to think that our offices were only 2 LRT stations away from each other! Kita ni selalu sibuk dengan hal masing-masing, sampai lupa pada orang lain, kan?
Anyway, at the end of our conversation, we decided that both of us needed a break, and it would be nice to see Lia after all these years. So off to Kuantan we went!
The weather was great, pokok tepi highway pun nampak cantik hehe :-) We began a leisurely drive on Friday morning, and arrived in Kuantan in time for lunch, at a small restaurant on the riverbank.
I've never liked ikan patin sebab selalu bau hanyir lumpur, but they're expert patin cooks in Kuantan! Ikan patin masak tempoyak, finger licking, wa cakap lu! Lia was a most gracious host. We spent the rest of the day at Lia's place. Dari aku mula masuk keta (Nore drove), sepanjang jalan dari KL dok sembang je, sampai kat Kuantan pun dok sembang bertiga, masuk tido kul 5.00 pagi. Motormouths!
On Saturday, we continued our roadtrip. Lia dari awal pesan suruh bawak extra baju, katanya nak singgah tepi pantai, so kitorang okey je la. We stopped to have breakfast at Kemaman Kopitiam.
Everything on the menu was so good! Roti bakar, telur rebus, little packets of nasi lemak (lauk sambal ikan, "huuhhh?", tapi sedap!), nasi dagang... melantak! The restaurant was packed to the brim, tua-muda-bebudak-melayu-cina-india-mat saleh, semua ada. Me & Nore got so hooked on their coffee (kopi cham dia best!), that we had forgotten that coffee is diuretic. Sib baik lepak lama sket kat kopitiam tu, sempat la gi toilet sekali :-P Kalau asyik nak ter-kench dalam keta nanti, payah.
We headed to Kuala Terengganu. Nore wanted to get some batiks, yelah kitorang keje gomen kan. Then Lia tanya, u girls remember our last roadtrip to KT? Flashback - Year 2000, me & Nore drove up to Kuantan to attend a friend's wedding, and we also stayed over at Lia's then. After the wedding, we drove on to KT. We passed by a beautiful stretch of beach with a huge rock formation on it, and we stopped to look at the scenery then. But apparently this time around, Lia had other plans for us, hence the extra clothes.
The place is in Kuala Abang, atas sket dari Dungun. There is a small guesthouse there, comprising of only three chalets, sandwiched in between the chalet operator's house, and her mother-in-law's house. How quaint!
Tak senonoh, pepagi buta kitorang pegi ketuk pintu rumah makcik tu, tanya pasal sewa chalet (and also to tumpang her toilet - the coffee we had consumed in Kemaman was still doing it's job!) The chalets were available only for the day, as a party from Kelantan had booked them for Sunday. "OK makcik, kami nak gi Pasar Payang dulu, balik kang kami singgah lagi".
So off we went to KT pulak. Terus ke Pasar Payang, borong batik - sengih je budak kedai tu, ada la dalam RM3000 worth of sale kat kitorang je. Of course lepas tu tuju ke section foodstuff plak. Yang aku never miss beli every time aku ke Pasar Payang is opak dan nese. Opak is disks of dried tapioca crackers, and nese is disks of natural palm sugar, much better quality than the palm sugar we get in KL. Jajan yang lain tu biasalah, macam-macam ada dari kuih kapit ke jeruk buah salak. Also bought a few kilos of pauh mah ite, manis betul! I bought turtle eggs for mom, and had to endure Lia 'Miss Greenpeace's scowl and lecture on turtle conservation hehe :-) Nak buat camana, mak aku suka telur penyu...
No trip to KT is sah kalau tak beli kepok lekor. Detour pulak ke Losong, borong kepok. Selain dari yang freshly cooked, beli jugak yang siap goreng and melantak dalam keta, sedap giler! On our way back, it was tea-time, so singgah satu tempat makan bernama 'Lempeng'. Ingatkan nak makan kuih & lempeng, rupanya kat situ depa jual ketupat sotong and all kinds of seafood goreng tepung, yummy! I never thought of having ikan kembung for tea before, have you? Along the way, singgah gerai kecik-kecik tepi jalan, beli jagung bakar la, kacang rebus la.
Sampai balik ke Kuala Abang, tengok makcik tu dah tunggu. Oh, promosi sket la untuk makcik yang baik ni. Namanya Makcik Zaidah, telephone number 09-8451076. Hehehe :-) Murah je sewa satu chalet dari petang sampai malam, tiga puluh hengget je. Apa lagi, masuk chalet, tukar baju, pastu berlari-lari la ke pantai! Peghak betul hahaha!
The current was pretty strong, so takdelah swim sangat. Barulah aku faham maksud 'ombak menggulung'. Selama ni dok tengok ombak kat PD, alahai... ciput je in comparison!
Lepak by the beach was a nice ending to our KT trip. Dah puas berendam & main ombak (sampai senja!), we sat on the rocks and makan jagung, kacang & pauh.
Actually I was a little sad at that time, because it brought back some memories.
It's nice getting back together with friends every now and then. Catching up with each other's lives... plus gossips about the rest of the gang haha! I'm sure we'll be doing this again, but sooner than 8 years (like this time) la, insyaAllah.