Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Fort Fun

The first Saturday in Colorado was spent hiking driving along the mountain road and hanging around in a high street.

The first Sunday though, was spent doing kids stuff. Our counterpart in Loveland invited us for some go-kart actions. Only thing is this go-kart thing is inside an amusement park called Fort Fun.


We need to purchase the amusement park pass to be able to go-kart. Since we have the pass, might as well enjoy other games that they have.

You know, when guys get involved in playing games, they forget everything else, including taking photos. We did the Go-Kart, Giant Slide, Laser Tag, Bumper Boat and Mini Golf. But all the photos and videos that I have for the day are as below. I will not attempt to talk my way out of my lack of photos... >.<







Monday, September 26, 2011

Denver

After coming down from Trail Ridge Road, we stopped by for awhile in Estes Park. Estes Park is not a park, but a small township. I only have 2 photos of this place which is not related to this place at all, because I have been here before and there is nothing new.

1. Saw a Vette' flew pass and quickly snapped from my camera, but only managed to catch this >.<


2. Saw some interesting prints on souvenir shirts on sale in a shop... the one that stood out for me was the "I'm Not A Vegetarian, But I Do Eat Them" lolzzz...


We didn't stop for very long, went to Denver after lepak-ing for awhile... to the so-called most happening street in Denver downtown...





Unfortunately, not long after we arrived, it began to rain quite heavily, and the crowd dispersed >.< ... so we  got into the shopping mall nearby, the Denver Pavillions..



Saw some horse carriage on the street too...


Please forgive me, I'm really not good in talking about shopping malls... but I did saw something interesting at the chocolate shop in the mall...


Poor bear, so pitiful =(


Headed for dinner at The Bangkok Kitchen again that night. The place was full, and we had to wait outside for 30 minutes in the cold weather. They have 2 interesting tables for waiting customers outside...


When we went in, the owner personally came out and apologize to us. She even offered us something which she said is "on the house" (meaning F.O.C) before we start ordering, how nice...


So, I guess I shall feature her restaurant more...

You know how to differentiate between authentic Asian cuisine and angmoh-nized Asian cuisine?

The authentic ones will provide you with items such as below picture...


The angmoh-nized ones will expect you to eat your rice with knife and fork...

In Thai, Pad means rice... I guess... since their menu has translations on what-what-what Pad = what-what-what Rice.

I had the Koa Pad and Tom Yam (Thai Hot) that night...



As my first visit, the food here did not disappoint. Good job, Took!~

Sunday, September 25, 2011

My 3rd Ride @ Loveland

Jump queue post... this post is a continuation of this...

When I reached Avis to get a car change, there was no need to negotiate for which car to get, the auntie at the counter said: "We only have the Lincoln Town Car or Kia Forte at the moment."

I don't want Forte, so basically I was just left with the Lincoln. So I took the Lincoln rather reluctantly, because the last time I came I had this type of car too.

Fate would have it that less than 24 hours after I got that Lincoln, some random stone hit the windscreen and a crack developed. So... off I went to get another replacement car, for my replacement car. Gotta admit that I wasn't a tiny bit sad at all that I get to choose another car...

This time, this is what I got, my 3rd car:


The Nissan Rogue, Murano's little brother SUV.


You must be wondering, there's no such car in Malaysia. That is because this car goes by a different chassis in Malaysia. Does the X-Trail sounds familiar to you?


I have to say, I absolutely love this car. Mainly there's 3 reasons:

1. There's no intelligent headlamps/sensors/interior dim that goes on when you least expect them to; what it has is simple dashboard and buttons where it goes on when you press on and off when you press off.

2. There's no V8 with below 160 horse power engine and 10 tonnes heavy and gets overturned when you do cornering at close to 30 mph; what is has is 2.5L engine that spells 180 horse power with AWD system and does cornering at 70 mph without breaking a sweat.

3. There's no unresponsive gas pedal that urges you to keep flooring it to make the car go; what it has is a techy dashboard meter that shows your fuel economy with a real time gauge to tell you what MPG you are currently doing. This keeps you focused on driving fast while keeping your foot light whenever possible.


And there's a big boot.


I don't like the look of the X-Trail, but this Rogue, I absolutely love. I'm gonna wanna get this car again, IF I ever come to US again...

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Trail Ridge Road @ Rocky Mountain

I've been to Rocky Mountain before too last year, again I wasn't super thrilled to be going again. Mostly I was just planning to play tour guide assistant to a few of the 'first-timers'.


Interestingly, when I went last year, the main road called the Trail Ridge Road was closed due to the ice on the roads have not sufficiently melt. This time it was open.

Still, the initial drive into the national park was boring. I mean, yes the view are amazing...


But, I already had these last year. It was nothing new...

Then we started climbing higher up the mountains, on Initial D perfect winding roads...


We were sufficiently high above sea level when we made our first stop. This is when I realize, this time might not be so similar to last year after all...

7°C

Everyone was beginning to jacket up...


We are almost at the altitude where the clouds would be...


But we're not at the peak yet. We continued climbing...


4.5°C

We reached the altitude where the clouds are hanging around... over here, even jackets proved little use for the cold weather and the strong winds...



There was still some climbing to do, and when we reached the end point, where the peak is within sight,

2°C

This time really have to jacket up, if not really will die >.<


We were not able to hang around too long under such conditions, after taking some photos, we headed back down...


The trip was cool...

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

My Ride @ Loveland

I originally intended to get my hands on a Cadillac CTS, unfortunately it was not to be.

Avis girl: What car would you like? We have lots of cars today, Cadillac, BMW, Sonata, Lincoln, Chrysler, Ford Fusion, even a Mustang.
Me: I'd like a Cadillac CTS.
Avis girl: Okay, let me check... ... ... oh, sorry, it seems that the Cadillac is not available. Would you like a Sonata instead?
Me: No, not Sonata, and not Lincoln. Can I have the BMW then?
Avis girl: Okay, let me check... ... ... the BMW is not ready yet.
Me: >.< ... what is ready then?
Avis girl: We have a Chrysler ready to drive off now, would you like that instead?
Me: Well, okay, whatever, yeah, fine. I'll have the Chrysler then.

So... this is my ride in Loveland, the previous generation Chrysler 300 Touring.


I have to admit, I am not super thrilled to have this car, because this is not my first choice.


And the drive is sluggish, real sluggish. I wonder if all American cars are made this way, where the car would not go unless you yank on the gas pedal hard. Big engine, no power >.<


I'm going to get a car change tomorrow though, the remote key is behaving weird and low on battery. Not sure if I still want the Cadillac, I checked the spec of both cars, they seem the same, same weight, same horsepower, same torque.

Maybe I'll try to get a Volkswagen Passat/Infiniti G35 (a.k.a Nissan Skyline)/Toyota Prius, depending on what Avis has...

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Bon Appetit, Loveland

If you are following my blog, you might have realized that I am in the US for more than a week now, and you will have realized that I have not made any new posts after San Francisco.

Truth is, I have nothing much to blog about for the whole week. I'm going to the same place, called Loveland. The places all looks familiar, nothing changed. In fact I never did sightseeing after work, just dinner, and then back to the hotel.

So, I think I'll just do a run up on the food I've eaten so far...

First meal in Colorado:

During my first visit, I did not know where to eat, mostly I just eat at the steak house opposite my hotel. This time though, travelling with me is someone experienced with the place. Loveland is like a second hometown to him. So upon arrival, first place we went to was this Halal Thai cafe called The Bangkok Kitchen.

I have to say, this is a good place to sample Asian/Thai food in Colorado, or even the whole of US. Everything looks and tastes authentic, none of those Americanized nonsense. Honestly, I believe that if you cannot stomach a food at its authentic cultural state, it is better you not have it, rather than try to 'localize' it.


I had for the day, home made Thai Iced Tea, Fried Chicken and White Tom Yam. All superb.




Breakfast:

We only go to 2 places, IHOP and The Egg & I. IHOP stands for International House Of Pancakes, but it serves from a vastly more extensive menu compared to Paddington's that we have in Malaysia. The Egg & I on the other hand, is a specialty egg house, where almost everything they serve is associated with eggs.



For the past 1 week, it is omelette, omelette, and more omelette for me on breakfast.


Lunch:

Lunch is a strictly 1 hour affair. We try to adhere to it and not let the Malaysian flexibility get the better of us. So usually we don't eat lavish stuff.

Mostly it's fast food, like Carl's Jr and Subway,




We went to Asian Cafe once, which is near our office, where we have those set rice ala Asian. It was here I learned a few truths about Americanized Chinese food naming.
   i. Egg Roll means Spring Roll, not something rolled up with egg as the skin.
   ii. Won Ton Soup means soup with won ton skin, not won ton with fillings inside the skin.
   iii. They have a dish called Moo Goo Gai Pan, at first I thought it was some mispronounced Cantonese for Mushroom Chicken Rice 蘑菇鸡饭, but it is actually Mushroom with Chicken Slices 蘑菇鸡片.
   iv. They have a dish that they claim originates from some warlord in China, but the dish does not exist in the whole of China's history, and they go by the name of either General Tso's Chicken, or General Tao's Chicken. Both these dishes are the same thing, you'll see the different namings in different restaurants.



Dinner:

I didn't take any pictures of the steak house outings, but we do go to a few. What I did take pictures of, is of another Thai meal I had, in another popular restaurant called Sri Thai. Interestingly, when we arrive at this place, the GPS announces: arriving at, Sara Thai. >.<

The taste is still quite okay here, but I still think Bangkok Kitchen is better. I had Tom Kha (Thai coconut soup) here, and another chicken dish that I forgot the name already.



And, finally got my mouth on a piece of the notorious Red Lobster meal. I had the Double Lobster dunno-matcha-matcha here, and boy oh boy, I never imagined I can get full with eating lobster. And the meal cost $24, or RM72 if you convert.


Snacks:

Sometimes you will feel hungry at night, and there's nothing to eat in the hotel. So we frequent supermarkets such as Wal-Mart and Target to buy some snacks for supper.



That, ladies and gentlemen, is about it for my first week adventure (or re-adventure) in Loveland.