Sunday, August 31, 2008

Last entry on Brunei

I can give you all some information on the fruit .... We bought a large bag of them to take back to the Hotel ... I really liked them ..You broke the skin and sqeezed the clearish flsh was exposed which was very sweet and remeniscent of Lychee perhaps ... but in the Centre was a brown seed .....We didn't cook the seeds up to try :O)



The Longan( Dragons Eye) is so named as it resembles an eyeball when shelled, (the black seed shows through the translucent flesh like a pupil )The fruit is edible and used in desserts and sweet and sour dishes, the seed cooked has a nutty flavour


 


 


We put so much in during the two short days in Brunei ... Having been dropped off back at the we collapsed into bed and slept through til morning ... The room had a 42 inch TV which was unusual for hotels ..McD had chosen well :O) Breakfast in the hotel . Not the best but fine ... because they are a Muslim country, no Bacon ...They did have Beef Rashers though !!! Tasted like boiled corned silverside and very unapealing ..but there was other stuff .... We then had the morning to ourselves so out we went for a walk before the heat built up again .....


The foyer of our floor ..McD making hersef at home :O)



 



 


  Having stopped off for a coffee in a very modern 'starbucks' style cafe (the coffee was better than starbucks) we wandered along the road taking in the sites and the people .... It's all so modern though .. Brunei MacDonalds was there !! Is there anywhere in this world where they are not ?? We had to get a picture of the Brunei MacDs delivery service :O) I had hoped we would stumble on a park or something but we never did ... We tracked back in a large circle crossing busy roads between cars (They even stopped for us !!) and walked along some smaller clothes and hardware shops, before finding a supermarket closer to the hotel where we stocked up on bottled water for the day and a few unusual cold drinks they had there ...


 


 


 



Then back to the hotel and the Mall which is connected to the back of the Hotel ..... We had lunch wit hthe locals at the food court there ...Some nice mix of philipino dishes.... Our guide picked us up shortly after that ... It was to be a more cultural afternoon ... Visiting no less than 3 museums .. I had asked that they find us a park or something to visit but it wasn't to be ....


The Mall


The first museum was dedicated to the Sultan of Brunei ... Ceremonial carriages, ballgowns and military style suites all on display along with the family history in pictures etc of the Sultan ..... Our guide, able to speak continuously for 2 or 3 life-times on a single intake of breath rattles off who they had all married , divorced etc along whith which cousins married what cousins from what line .... Now I really had no interest .. I wandered off as much as I could leaving McD and her together .. McD has more interest than me in that .... Of Course some of the artifacts were interesting but too few and far between 


Entrance to the Sultans Palace


A charot fit for a Sultan


One thing though was that an entire floor was dedicated to the 'gifts'  other countries had given the Sultan (brunei?) over a period .... Now some of these gifts were quite something ... Swords , model cities in silver, beautifully etched Kris knives ..... And there in a corner behind glass was new zealands  ... "Hey McD come and look at this !!!" I could n't believe it we'd presented them wit hthe tiniest little shopping bag woven out of flax (Moari ) that would have sat in the palm of my hand  ... and some wooden thing .... THAT WAS IT !!!!!!   No carved Moari greenstone ??!!!!! No NZ Iconic peice of art ??!!!!!!   We Were Embarrassed !!!!!!! and walked on quickly ...


Sultans treasures


The rest of the afternoon plodded on ...A visit to a meusem that held a mockup of a Bornio Tribe Villiage .. The guide just having inhaled again from the 1st museum talks was in full chatter .... The villiage was interesting though ... A large coral style of up right fiishing nets ....  Showing how they made tabioca ... stuff like that .... The chatter was starting to give me a headache ....... 


And then a musuem on ...Well bits and bobs I guess ... A history of the oil industry there ..... And a large collection of the Koran books from around the 1400s onwards I think.....


The last stop was to visit the Mosque again in daylight this time .... It was a prayer day and even late in the afternoon may people were there or leaving or arriving ..... However the guide gained permission for us to go in and also to climb the steps to the top of one of the towers to get a view across the city ....!!! It was 35 degrees poeple and she wanted us to climb a tower !!!! 



Stuff that I told McD ... I'll leave you and her to it... .McD was actually keen to do the climb ... 


Now what I hadn't realised was that the guide wasn't going to do the climb with MCD ... Otherwise I would have gone with her ... ....


McD Climbed this spire !!  :O)


It was nice though sitting in the gardens and watching the world go by .... Everyone so friendly !! Smiling and saying hello....... What a shame other muslim country's couldn't be the same ......



You will have to keep visiting McDs site.. She has started writing again and will show the pictures she took from the spire top ... She was very dark red by she retuned to terr-firma..... 



 


 



 


 



 


 


 



 


 



And that was our Brunei trip ...... That evening the hotel had a special evening at the restaurant there and we dined on fresh whole fish cooked in a fresh  mango sauce along with all sorts  of dishes you could go help yourself to ...All indonesian style ... Yum ...    ..... the next morning we were packed and off to the airport .... a lot of hanging around and then a 3 hour flight and we were at Hong kong airport .......



3 comments:

Kay said...

It looks very clean and tidy - and I love the decorations on the buildings. Sounds like a magical place steeped in history and artefacts.
(NZ's gift does sound a trifle embarrassing.)
You were kind to say McD was a deep shade of red rather than purple! I can't wait to see her photos.

btw one of the photos wouldn't download. the one just after your description of McD going up the steps and you enjoying the garden.

dinzie said...

Oh No Kay !!! And that was the best picture of the whole holiday !!!!

:O)

D

keewee said...

I have enjoyed your pictures and stories of your trip to Brunei very much. I will go over and check out
McD's site.