Alhamdulillah - praise to Allah, who had designated a wonderful, meaningful January for me:
- For the first two weeks of school, my form 3 students and I studied a poem entitled Leisure by William Henry Davies. The beautiful poem gently reminds us to take a break from our busy life by doing something that we enjoy. It also teaches us to appreciate the beauty of nature and be grateful to God for His magnificent creations.
- In the third week of school, we did a group work to write an opinion which is also related to nature.
- In the final week of January, from 21 to 23 January 2012, my family and I had a gathering in Cameron Highlands. An opportunity that we wouldn't want to miss as we got to meet our family and be really close to nature.
Our unforgettable journey starts here..
On 21 January 2012, at 3.00 p.m., we left for Cameron Highlands by driving from Selayang Baru. Here's the route from Google Maps.
According to Google Maps, we were supposed to reach our destination after driving for 3 hours and 13 minutes in the 251-km journey. However, Allah tested our patience when we were caught in a terrible traffic for almost 3 hours from the LATAR Expressway to the exit of Tanjung Malim.
We finally reached the Simpang Pulai exit at about 8.00 p.m.
At about 10.00 p.m., we were welcomed by the bone-chilling weather and the dark atmosphere of Cameron Highlands, trembling with exhaustion and craving for dinner. After dinner (or shall I say supper), we performed the jamak prayers and went straight to bed.
In the morning of 22 January 2012, we woke up to the freezing air emanated by nature's air conditioner . The tap water was ice-cold but luckily our apartment is equipped with hot shower. We rented 3 Royal Lily apartments located in Taman Royal Lily, Tanah Rata, Cameron Highlands. Each apartment has 3 rooms. Thank you Cikde and Ciksu for sponsoring our accommodation ^_^. May Allah bless both of you with eternal wealth and happiness. Here's the picture of our apartment:
Level 1 - Was for grandmothers, aunts & uncles. The centre for cooking, dining and socializing with the whole family.
Level 2 - Was for uncles, aunts, cousins.
Level 3 - Was where my family, my parent, my siblings & their families stayed.
Okay, let's check out what was for breakfast.
My aunt's famous french toast - yummy!
Err..I fried a packet of frozen chicken fingers - they loved it!
After breakfast, we headed to Cameron Bharat Tea Plantation. What's the point of going to Cameron Highlands without visiting the famous tea plantation?
The entrance of Cameron Bharat Tea Plantation
Zara feasted her eyes at the sea of green tea leaves
The picturesque and breathtaking view of the tea plantation. MasyaAllah, it's so beautiful! The air is so cool and refreshing. The lush greenery is fantastically invigourating.
Took a family photo before leaving Cameron Bharat Tea Plantation
Our next stop was the Big Red Strawberry Farm..
..again we were caught in another 7-km crawling traffic stretching from Bharat Tea Plantation to Brinchang.
After waiting patiently in the car for more than an hour during a hot searing afternoon, we finally reached our destination. The cool breeze soften our anguish. We went straight to the cafe to grab some lunch.
Delectable dish #1 - Chocolate Fondue
Delectable dish #2 - Waffle
Delectable dish #3 - Fries (Zara's favourite)
Delectable dish #4 - Strawberry salad
Delectable dish #5 - Fried strawberry ice cream
Next, we tried our hand at picking the red, juicy strawberries.
It cost me RM36.00 for that box of strawberries
That night, we had a barbecue back at the apartment.
Marinated chicken & lamb grilling on the blazing barbie
Cooked lamb chop
The condiment (soy sauce + garlic + lime juice + chillies were blended together) to go with the lamb and chicken chop - Temerloh style!
Next morning, we had a tahlil (performing prayers & reciting the Yasin).
My uncle lead the tahlil whereas my grandmother, who was a former ustazah, gave a tazkirah on the benefits of Ayatul Kursi - the chief of the Ayats of the Qur'aan.
Our reference for the tazkirah - Thank you Ciksu for making copies of this kitab for us!
After breakfast, we packed our things to get ready for home.
Another family photo. Some of my relatives had already left Cameron Highlands when this photo was taken.
Outside our apartment.
There's nothing more magical than spending my time with my beloved family. It evokes a contented emotion and indescribable feelings. Thank you Allah for blessing me with a wonderful family. We'll surely have more vacations in Cameron Highlands - one of God's greatest escape for the whole family!