Shania in KL

On the morning of 9th August we departed for Kuala Lumpur for a week's visit and also to attend my brother's convocation at Universiti Malaya which would be held on 13th August 2005. I could not say who was more excited - my wife (the shopping in KL) or my daughter (her first trip to KL). Overall I can say I am the most worried dad at that time. Trying to keep her span of attention for one and half hours air trip would be a challenge. Even for our short trip to Sibu (30 minutes) I had a difficult time managing her. There are so many things you need to prepare - the milk, the favourite pillow, the toys, ecetra that I will use to distract her in the flight. I remember at one time our one hour flight to Miri, she brought me to walk the whole length of the plane. So this time I had a bagful of items ready to keep her busy including books to read and color.

We reached the Kuala Lumpur International Airport with no untoward incidents - she behaved quite well in the flight, fiddling with my seat belt, playing with the stewardesses who pass by (I wish I was the baby). We went to the arrival hall to pick up our baggage. After that we took a Taxi to Kuala Lumpur Plaza Suites at Bukit Bintang. My future sis-in-law, Alice, was already waiting in front of KL Plaza for us and we proceeded to our room.

Our day in KL was spent on mostly indoors because the haze was so bad in Kuala Lumpur that week. I did not want to expose my baby to those small harzardous particles flying around in the air. Since all the family were there so she kept herself occupied by going from one room to the other disturbing her grandma and grandad, her aunties and uncles.

One of those days we went to Berjaya Times Square via Monorail. My brother and I brought her to the Berjaya indoors theme park. I guess, being her first time there, she really did not enjoy as much as she should - you don't get these in Kuching. The rides and games there were not really for any two year olds, so she missed out a lot on them as each ride requires a child to be of a particular height. We went for the simple fun games and rides - train, flying bus, children's playground. The entrance price was also quite steep - it can vary between RM28 to RM38 per pax depending on the discount vouchers you have or Credit Cards you use. It should probably be free for kids who are five years and below as the parents are the ones who have to accopnay them for all those rides/games. I enjoyed those rides/games more than her I guess.

The next day we got to experience the Megakidz Children's Playland at the Megamall. While the rest of the family went shopping in Megamall I joined her in the Playland. You could see that she was curious and - yeah - expressionless at the start. I was wondering whether the people who invented these games and toys missed out on something especially for my daughter - she was just simply not interested.

After a moment of running and sliding, we were joined by a little girl by the name of Eunice. She was about 5 years old and all alone. I guess it was having her around that my little girl started to enjoy Playland. She showed Shania around the mazes and slides. Shania enjoyed her company so I just stood and watch. That must be the missing element I told myself - she needs another friend almost her age to play with. I will have to discuss this with my wife over a candle light dinner and champange .... hehehehe...

Eunice explained that she was in the Megakidz Playland as her grandfather was going shopping. I asked her where her Mummy and Daddy was and she replied that her Mum was working and that her Dad had passed away a few years back. There was a moment of silence for a while, because I did not know what to say, but she seemed so calm about it - it makes one think very hard too. We played a few more activities for a while and later Eunice told me that she was hungry. So we went to the food and drinks counter inside the Playland to get some snacks. I got both of them some food and drinks - Shania and Eunice shared fries, sausages and drinks. In fact she taught Shania how to dip the fried in tomato. It was about half an hour later that Eunice's grandfather showed up. Shania and I said good bye to Eunice and we went to look for our family members who were still shopping - I was carrying her when she fell asleep on my shoulders.

On Friday it seemed that the haze had gone away and so I decided to bring Shania to the swimming pool. She has been looking at the pool since day one from our apartment window but due to the haze I did not want to expose her to the unhealthy air outside. She kept saying 'pool' 'pool'. So armed with my camera, towel and some extra clothes we proceeded to the pool. 

Finally that Sunday it was time to go back. The day before we had attended my brother's convocation (another blog for that). So the next morning our flight was at 8 a.m and so we had to take a very early taxi ride to KLIA. It was not a good time to wake up Shania - more because the mood that morning was not that terrific as she still wanted to sleep. She was also coughing a bit. I made sure I had all of Shania's small toys we bought in KL in another small bag with her milk, books etc - so as to keep her occupied for the journey home. The whole family converged at the KLIA - we bid farewell to my brother and Alice who had accompanied us to the airport.

The trip back to Kuching was quite relaxing. Maybe due to waking up so early, Shania slept for most of the journey back to Kuching.