A Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Programme organised by my office. The objective is to create a beautiful landscape underneath an overpass at Jalan Duta. As it was organised on Saturday, I decided to bring Nabil along (I am sending a subtle message that Saturday is a day dedicated to my family and if you wish me to be there, I shall bring my kid along).
Thanks to my Secretary General who acknowledged Nabil's presence in her opening speech. Before the opening ceremony, she invited Nabil to sit in the front row and addressed him as 'our VVIP for the day'. Nabil was also invited to have his breakfast at the VVIP table. One lucky kid.
Then we marched to the venue. These are how much plants we need to plant that day. There are two areas involved for this project and the number of plant involved is actually more than these.
Nabil was doing a good job planting the smallest plants.
He met a few nice uncles - Uncle Hazrul and Uncle Peter.
We targeted to plant 100 plants. By the end of the day, we manage to achieve110! Boy, we are so proud!
I had a few trips to a hypermarket with my 4 kids. Sometimes it was a bit tricky but most of the time it was fun. But let's not talk about that because all moms did that, kan? So, no big deal. For this entry, it is extra special. A trip to a hypermarket withmy kids plus my nephew, my niece and my little cousin, Jaja. We use three trolleys in total - one for the kids who felt that sitting inside the trolley is more fun than running down the hypermarket aisle (Sarah, Jaja and Nazran), another trolley for baby Nazmi's seat and another one for the grocery items.
Me and my husband split the list and we went different ways inside the hypermarket. He was with baby Nazmi and I ended up with the other two trolleys (pushed by Nabil and Haziq). The kids were having so much fun in the Trolley Race, Trolley Hide-and-Seek, Move-It-Yourself (sit inside the trolley and try to move it yourself), Stay Still (squat inside the trolley and try not to move when the trolley moves) (oh, I can create all kind of trolley games for the whole day!) and they couldnt stop laughing all the way especially when I asked Nabil to try his new pair of trousers, inside the trolley. They formed a cute children barricade at both side of the aisle to block people from seeing Nabil.
It took double amount of time to shop and dine that day. When they are in a big group, it is actually more manageable. They move together, wait for one another, no one running here and there and trust me, it is not hard at all. Just that they have different timing for nature calls. At the food court, I have to take their orders using the S Note since I didnt have a good memory as kedai mamak's staff. We went back at 10pm, right after we send Jaja home.
And I was told not to take my nephew and niece out anymore after this. LOL.
In this entry (here), I have promised to publish one dedicated entry on the food served at the GSW's dinner at Istana Negara. So, here you go.
Below, peppered seared salmon and yellow fin tuna sashimi with mizuna salad, smoked cod with micro greens honey-sesame dressing.
Below, roasted plum tomato soup with prawn lollypop, curry cream and toasted almonds. This one of a kind soup is so tasty. I can still remember its taste, the creaminess of the curry cream balanced out the sourness of the roasted plum tomato soup. I will try to cook this one day.
Below, char grilled Australian Wagyu beef tenderloin on savoury bread patties, sauteed mushrooms and herb juice reduction. The savoury bread patties is similar to a bread pudding, only with a lot of sliced button mushroom inside and soaked in the herb juice reduction.
Nougat ice parfait with hazelnuts and raisins, sun-dried apricot and prune compote
Right after I finished the desserts, I ran to the main stage, get the motorcade ready and standby for the First Lady's departure.
The first dinner was hosted by the Prime Minister of Malaysia and his wife at Seri Perdana, Putrajaya. All types of food being served - Malay, Western, Chinese, Indian, Japanese and Italian.We were treated to peformances on dances of the various races in Malaysia by Permata Seni kids. Talented bunch of kids.
Second dinner hosted by GSW. We didnt attend that dinner at Shangri-La Hotel. Instead, me and the whole Team Namibia had our BBQ dinner at the poolside (Hotel Istana).
Raja Permaisuri Agong Tuanku Hajah Haminah graced the [third] dinner at Istana Negara (National Palace). I felt lucky to be given a chance to be in the beautiful Palace that night and to be so close to Tuanku (like, one metre close) since I have to walk with the First Lady and other VVIPs from the holding room to the banquet hall. The food was excellent! I will dedicated one entry on the food served that night (it is completed - here).
Personal security officers on duty. My roommate and fellow Team Namibia member, Inspector Suhaila is on the left.
So much great things to tell about this hotel. Well, since I had the privilege to dine anytime, anywhere, on the house, why not I share a few photos of their great [room service] food?
I had a chance to order three meals to be served in the room (Suhaila ordered more since she missed her meal more often than me due to her duty).
The trolley is here!!
My brunch. I couldnt recall its fancy name but it is a very huge burger with thick juicy beef patty, melted blue cheese, caramelised onion and fresh tomatoes. Served with thick potato fries. The bun is very light and crunchy. I ordered chocolate drink to go with the burger. Messy table, I know. I was in between discussion with the Namibian delegates, finishing some paper works and running to the venue to check on the latest event details.
I cant eat everything in one go. I have to stop halfway (for 20 minutes) because the patty is really thick. You are going to feel very full after a few bites. I was so hungry and I thought I can eat TWO of this in one go but I was wrong.
My early dinner before we depart for an event in the evening. I ordered this before I went to the venue to check on the First Lady's seating arrangement and came back one hour later. The food is still hot :) White rice with oxtail asam pedas. Served with some vegetables and authentic sambal belacan. I never knew oxtail tastes great in asam pedas! The meat is so tender, it kinda melt in your mouth.
My lunch. A big portion of fish and chip. Yummy!
I was away at the event venue attending coordination meeting and organising a courtesy call between Malaysian and Namibian Ministers of Women when Suhaila called and asked whether I wanted to order food for lunch. Buffet lunch will be ended once I came back to Hotel Istana. Since I cant remember the room service menu and I am sure fish and chip is a must-have in all hotels' menu, so I just ordered fish and chip. And orange juice.
The fish is so juicy and tender....and delicious...and yummy. And the chips are so HUGE.
Thank you Mr Praba G Menon and Hotel Istana for these tasty food. I really appreciate it.
GSW was held in Shangri-La and the First Lady's delegation were residing in Hotel Istana. Being the LO of the First Lady, me and the personal security officer (Suhaila) have to be on the same floor, if possible, in the closest room to Her Excellency.
The lobby & Songket Lounge. I spent a lot of time here, running here and there, waiting, capturing some photos, chatting, utilising the free wifi to email some documents to my office and updating my blog. These were my living rooms for a week.
I would like to thank the General Manager of the Istana Hotel, Mr Praba G Menon for taking a very good care of me and Suhaila for the whole duration of our stay there. He said he truly understand our nature of work where we need to be on standby for 24/7 and there are times that we will not be able to have our meal (especially Suhaila!). He told us that we are welcome to eat anything, anytime and everything is on him. We could even have a room service anytime should we came back late at night or too tired to go to the restaurant / coffee house downstairs. He is such a noble man. I am truly humbled by his generousity.
I never missed the buffet breakfast! I just love buffet breakfast!
This was my dining area for a week. Taman Sari Brasserie.
I will take my family for a buffet dinner in Taman Sari next month. The kids keep bugging me to bring them to Hotel Istana - they wanted to go to the hotel where Mama sleep for the whole week.
This is my/our room. Yes, a suite. We need to be close to the First Lady's room, remember? She is in the Stateroom, so...
This is the plan of our room. A living room, a bedroom with huge comfortable bed and two bathrooms. Two TV sets as well. I usually crashed on the sofa in the living room should I need to express the milk for baby Nazmi.
The whole team from Hotel Istana is very experienced and well-coordinated. I am deeply indebted to the excellent Sales team - Ms Amy and Ms Shalina, for being there for us although they have children waiting for them at home. They will accompany us for dinner whenever they are free. They will also check whether we have had our meal whenever we came back to the hotel. They showed us the true Malaysian Hospitality.
The housekeeper, safety and security team of the Hotel Istana are excellent. Thanks to the Chief Security, Mr Musa and his team (Mr Putera, Mr Junaidi, etc) and the Executive Housekeeper, Mr Zanil Abdin, and his team. They were there 24/7, just a call / an SMS away, very well-coordinated. They blocked the elevator, clear the hallway/lobby whenever the First Lady delegation departs/arrives at the hotel.
I highly recommend this hotel to any agencies which will be hosting the Country Guest / Tetamu Negara in the future. They will take a great care of the Guest as well as the local team accompanying the Guest. Hotel Istana is the best!
Since this event was officiated by the Prime Minister of Malaysia and the First Lady of Malaysia is the chair for this Summit, this event received vast media coverage. I managed to snap a few photos from the news during dinner at my hotel room.
The First Lady who I was assigned to (Her Excellency Madam Penehupifo Pohamba) from Namibia, and LO Anchale's First Lady of the Republic of Zambia. During the press briefing.
LO Nadia manage to arrange a courtesy call between the Prime Minister of Malaysia and the President of Kosovo. My other friend, LO Indriati was also there accompanying the Deputy Prime Minister of Kosovo. Good job guys.
The press briefing before the Ministerial Roundtable session.