Sepoi-Sepoi Angin Kuale

View of the Perak River from the Kuala Kangsar Rest House - Virtualtourist dot com

Sepoi-Sepoi Angin Kuale is the title of a series of writings penned by my batchmate, Farid Nawawi (now CEO of MIMB Investment Bank Berhad) in our yearbooks right up till 1983, the year I left the Malay College. Sitting with Gemgem the other night, we reminisce our years in Kuala Kangsar, and one thing we both agreed on is the fact that Kuala Kangsar has one of the best “air” in the country. Crisp, cool, fresh air – fresh morning dew on the school fields as we walk to our classroom from the Big School.

I remember how during the weekends, my friends and I would walk to the town for some Mee Bandung at Kedai Makan Zabidi (no longer there), or have some roti canai at Thaufiq Restaurant (not sure now how it’s spelt), also known as Typhoid Restaurant, which has been there since the days my father was the Headboy of the Malay College (1954-56). I remember our driver, Abang Mazlan, who dropped by on his way back to KL, took me there and I walloped 8 pieces of Typhoid’s roti canai kosong. A visit to Kuala Kangsar is never complete without going for some bao (using the Mandarin spelling here…hehe) at Yut Loy. You have to go there early as most would have been sold out by lunchtime. I last had pau there was with Walking Vibrator, who, like me, is an old boy (class of 1990) on our way back from Penang after the ASEAN Telecommunications Regulatory Council meeting back in August 2005. We managed to get two pau daging, pau kacang merah and pau sekaya. I also had the mee hoon hailam there, which is as delicious as I can remember it to be. Even Azlan Chao, the only non-MCOBA/MCKK guy I know who has been to all the MCOBA Annual Dinners and Old Boys Weekend because of his father-in-law who is a MCOBA member, goes to Yut Loy often to get his dose of pau.

Gemgem told me that the Kuala Kangsar Rest House is now the equivalent to a 2 or 3-star hotel. I don’t know. Last I was there was back in 1996, the first time I went back to the Malay College for the Old Boys Weekend, 13 years after had I left my alma mater. It used to be my favourite place for steak and/or chicken chop. behind the Rest House is a Christian cemetery where Mabi, Karl (both from my batch), Bawang, Droid, Adlan, Jawa (all from batch 80-84) and Ben (batch 81-85: now a Director of Merdeka Center) would have picnics at in the middle of the night, usually during the period known as the ‘Devil’s Hour’. I remember one session sparked a rumour that vampires were heard laughing because of the jokes we cracked there scared off this old man on a bicycle who was passing by from Bukit Chandan.

Like I’ve mentioned in one of my previous postings, I do not like to go back during old boys weekend, simply because it is always packed, there is hardly any place to sleep there (some would sleep in either Ipoh or Taiping), and because to a certain extent I value my privacy. And I do not like to go back to Kuala Kangsar for a reason – going back for no reason is the best thing to do, and always has nothing to do with any MCKK-related event. So, Gemgem and I are planning to go back to Kuala Kangsar, with a nightstop, just to do this binge thing and really enjoy the food there.

And we hope to do it soon.