Credit to Ipoh

With the Budget 2010 announcement that every credit card that I have will be levied an RM 50 tax, I’ve been in a dilemma for the past week. The dilemma being, although nothing serious, is trying to figure out which credit card to cancel.

My reactions to the Budget speeches are always the same – divided. On the one hand, the economist me is rather pleased that the implementation of the levy is intended to stop errant spending. On the other hand, the shoppaholic in me is rather unhappy that I have to give up one of my cards. I have four cards and I only use two at most and on some months, none at al.

But I have one of each: a Visa, a Mastercard and AMEX. And I have a silly reason for holding each – Visa because it’s a Visa, as a kid, I always thought credit card equals Visa. Mastercard because, for everything else, there’s Mastercard. And AMEX is for a corporate hot shot – which I’m not anymore – but holding an AMEX makes me feel like one.

They’re all ridiculously sentimental reasons which should have no bearing on what should be a rational decision. So three of them have to go, but which, I really don’t know. Gah. Any ideas?

***

Ipoh is often spoken of in sentimental terms in Malaysia. There was that highly irritating song by Jacqueline Victor, where she sings ‘Ipoh Mali‘ (Coloquial for ‘I’m from Ipoh’)  over and over again. And then of course there’s that stereotypical belief that if you’re an ethnic Chinese in Malaysia, you’re probably from Ipoh (of course, if you’re an ethnic Malay, you’re from Kampung Baru, ethnic Indian, you’re probably from Brickfields) and people talk about the food. The glorious food.

Over the years, I’ve been inundated about the awesomeness that is Ipoh that I would have thought that the streets were lined in gold, and there were ghosts of our colonial pasts sauntering in the streets. Like randomly bumping into our old Imperial masters as we cross the street.

What I didn’t expect was well, not to like the town very much. It was a lot like Kuantan, in some parts. A lot like Penang in the more plush parts by the palaces. But the roads at night were dark and bumpy, and I thought it looked tired rather than historical. Ipoh just didn’t fill up my soul with any kind of sentiment the way other old quaint towns in Malaysia did.

In the morning, when the sun rose, and light streamed through the limestone mountains and set against blue skies – that feeling was still nothing. Don’t get me wrong, the limestone caves and hills were stunning and I would probably return to give Ipoh another chance.

It could be that I expected too much from Ipoh over the years. Or it could be I’m just rebelling against the awesomeness of Ipoh since everyone had been harping about just how awesome it is.

Somehow, I left Ipoh this morning a little depressed with the city.

***

So…Shiseido introduced their new line, Girly Erotica (Majolica-Majorca). My mum thought it was the most hillarious thing ever, that a girl would wear make up branded Girly Erotica.

What I do know is that I’m so buying the line, because hey, it’s Shiseido. This is a bit like Hermes making a plastic bag, like yes, I would so buy it. It’s Hermes after all.

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