That time of the year again, time to eat, drink, gamble and dress up in your finest ‘lobster red’ outfit. Yup, it’s the Chinese New Year and the only time when your grandma actually encourages you to indulge in gluttony, alcohol, gambling and making as much noise as you can … bring on the fire crackers! Well, not so keen on crackers but I put up with it.
It’s a human tradition of sorts to visit Petaling Street aka Chinatown prior to the New Year to stock up on food, goodies, clothing and anything that appears loud and red in colour. Was there early in the morning just before the crowd started to pour in. 1st stop was the flower stall to view the Cherry Blossom plant which signifies the coming of the new year. Weird looking plant with a long thin stalk and cotton growing at odd places, but the humans seemed to adore it.
Next up was the waxed duck and sausages stall. Strange and funny smelling human fodder which appears to have been mummified and preserved to last a thousand years. Think I’ll pass … give me the good old breakfast and BBQ sausages anytime. Haven’t tried duck before coz they are hard to catch. Beware, this stall is packed to the brim with food and claustrophobics should stay clear.
Also passed by several fruit and ornament stalls, with lanterns which came in all shapes and sizes and 1 colour … yup you guessed right, striking RED! At least, they match my collar and scarf.
Needed a breather from all that window shopping, so I plonked myself in front of another bright red stall … this time, it was selling BBQ pork slices. The aroma was heavenly and tempting and I reckoned that if were to set up a stall of my own, then this must be top on my list. This is a sure treat to get dogs going and highly recommended for training with your humans.
Further down, my owners spotted a huge poster stand of a coffee cup and they decided to have me pose with the coffee cup. Wonder what the passerbys were sniggering about, but I sniggered back anyway.
We then had breakfast at a noodle stall in a back alley which seemed fairly clean for such a location. Was on the lookout for rats in the alley but didn’t spot any … so much for this being the Year of the Rat. They have been very elusive so far. Rats are another obsession of mine and I can go for hours maintaining a stakeout over the regular coffee shop drain just waiting for a tail or whisker to scuttle by.
After that, we walked pass the smallest of small stalls selling Chinese clogs. Didn’t look very comfortable for walking in but the old folks swear by it. It looked heavy and built to last and was the fashion statement in its hey day. Certainly faces tough competition from the likes of the Adidas and Puma sneakers in this day and age.
We finally reached the end of the street and my owner had me posing in front of a Tshirt stall. Chinatown has lots of these stalls and tourists enjoy haggling over the imitation designer Tees. No doggie Tees on sale, so that was good news for me.
The general public seemed to have a better grasp of dog breeds nowadays as most passerbys mentioned ‘JRT’ when they noticed me. A few years ago, not many were aware and I was commonly referred to as ‘choy gow’ aka common street mutt. A number of elderly ladies also came up to say hi and pet me as they thought it was a treat to see a dog walking the streets of Chinatown. Goes to show that people do enjoy seeing dogs at public places, owners just have to be responsible and dogs have to be composed.
After that, we dropped by at the well kept manicured grounds of the Lake Gardens. Soaring trees, plenty of greenery and space to runaround, my kind of place. Walking the gardens were a treat.
Particularly enjoyed lounging around at the park benches surrounding a small lake and watching the guppies swim by. Also had time to play ball and run like the wind, cool.
Lots of space for everyone including dogs and as it is, most of garden lots were empty with no one around … makes you wonder why the authorities can’t allocate 1 small patch as a dog run. If they allowed dogs, I’ll be here on most days running my heart out.
Back home and my owners said that I had to look after this oversized rat basket from Chinatown so that’s my task for the new year. Kong Hei Fatt Choy … stay healthy and prosperous in the Year of the Rat!
Oh ya, do watch out for the Mid Valley Dog Show on 29 March 2008
… pet exhibition and booths, indoor trials and doggie games at a premier shopping centre, should be groovy!