Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Seeing The Shrines At Wat Nikrodharam

The main temple is impressive, all done up in regal paint, a big Buddha to stare down on you. For something more intimate and arguably more impressive, head around back to a small room crammed with icons. Many months after seeing the place, you may "wax" nostalgic.

The shrine, looking a little like the setup for a team picture.

The monks are are done in wax, so well executed, Madame Tussauds would be jealous. Reclining Buddha, practically a requirement for any legitimate temple.

Dalai Lama?

Give some props to the ladies. There's also a big case nearby, full of little religious trinkets to purchase. In the upper right corner, wood phallus icons. We've seen that theme before.

Last look at a wax buddhist monk, super impressive.

Monday, 15 January 2018

Wat Nikrodharam

The Malaysian city of Alor Setar has a great temple to trek to, Wat Nikrodharam. It was built in 1968 in the regal Thai style, dripping in golden curves and rich illustration. No surprise at the influence, the temple is up north, near the border with Thailand.

The temple complex mostly serves the Chinese Buddhist community, with a sprinkling of Thais and Indians.

The main temple.


Getting creative in depicting the natural world, including 3D trees slithering along the wall painting.

Definitely a place for relaxed contemplation.

More details, a Wall Of Important People and the Big Buddha.

Detail from another shrine in the complex.

Friday, 12 January 2018

Vocations Of Alor Setar, Part Two

Moving on to a couple of other businesses in town.

The laundry.

Three portraits of workers at a restaurant run by people with special needs.

Wednesday, 10 January 2018

Vocations Of Alor Setar, Part One

Lots of busy people in Alor Setar. Here's a quick glance at a couple of businesses.

The dried fish flake shop. Dried anchovy slivers are a key ingredient of the Malaysian breakfast staple, nasi lemak.

Workers, ready to work, always on smartphone.

The boss.

One man's treasure is another man's trash. Which is still valuable.

Introducing, the Trash Man. That yellow stuff in the bag is a cheap liquor. Same color going out.

Monday, 8 January 2018

Zahir Mosque In Alor Setar

Malaysia is a Muslim country, plenty of mosques in every city, town. Alor Setar has one of Malaysia's nicest examples, located right on the Main Street. It was built in 1912, making the mosque one of the oldest in the country. Zahir Masjid carries the distinction with grandeur.

Ready to head in. Or stop to pose for a picture.


Details. Prayer tools, beads and books.

The fine dome. A tip to modernity, Mecca on the closed circuit.

Women's section, back of the mosque.

Friday, 5 January 2018

Getting Printed In Malaysia

A peek at a small printing shop, located in Alor Setar. It's a second generation Chinese family operation. Invoices, flyers, you need to put your ideas, needs to paper, see the printer.

The presses. A machine in the back is an old warhorse left from the previous generation. More recent presses were sourced from Germany and Japan.

Inspecting and sorting.  Tool basket that keeps the printers going. 

Portrait of a printer.

Shrines. The photograph is the printer's mother. On the right, a shrine to the Indian guru Sai Baba. Why the Chinese owner had such a shrine, he couldn't really explain.

Ready to add to the to-do sheets.

Wednesday, 3 January 2018

A Fizzy Holiday

Continuing our holiday mall theme, Sarah and James ran across this impressive display. Seems Santa enjoys architecture and soda. Product placement run amok.

Starting waay back in time, when in Rome, hoist a cola.

Moving up the coast in Italy, leaning over too much lemon soda. In America, going on a diet (coke) to build a squat Empire State Building.

Loading up on liter bottles in Paris.

Rooting (beer) for Big Ben. The tallest building in the world, Burj Khalifah in the UAE. And in coke cans in KL.

A bit of everything for the Taj Mahal.