Inspirational · Relationships

Penang, Pearl of the Orient

We are going on a trip down memory lane today…

I’m so excited that you are joining me in this time of reflection together over a cuppa…

I thought we would have a tea that was introduced to me when I lived in Penang…

A fragrant Oolong tea & our treat is a local specialty there, a crisp sweet delicious peanut pancake, made with coconut milk & cane sugar.

I used to get this treat on market days from a food hawker also known as a Mukken cart, in the Pulau Tikus markets.

I do have coffee if you prefer, would you like to try a hazelnut blend?

We are reminiscing in the warm indoors today as it’s a very cold wintery day here in Australia…

Now we are seated & enjoying our treats, let’s get started on our journey through time…

Living on Penang Island

Malaysia was a 30 month posting on attachment, many years ago.

I absolutely loved the multi cultural experience of this time & immersed myself in learning about the different cultures & languages that surrounded me.

Bahasa Malay, Hokkien, Cantonese, Tamil but couldn’t quite master any of the dialects though did learn enough Hokkien for market days.

There was also a large expat community with a mixture of Australian, American & English young expats.

Our home was across the road from an American boarding school called Dalat.

This would become very pivotal in my spiritual journey….

My two daughter’s who were two & four years of age at this time, loved playing outdoors, having a large shaded, fully fenced & secure yard.

Being in the beautiful tropics, they did this most of their waking hours.

The house we lived in was located between two roads. The frontage was on the main arterial road to Batu Ferringi & the back was a smaller access road leading down to a Kampong (village) & a Hindu temple.

Life there was always so full of interesting activities, especially in this location with Hindu festivals going past our back gate with such vibrant colors in costumes, drums & cymbals.

And Chinese funerals going in the opposite direction past our front gate with full brass bands leading the way.

Being a Muslim country we often heard the call from the Mosques.

Yes life was full of interesting cultural festivals & fascinating practices.

On one of these hot tropical days…

On one of these hot tropical days, my daughters who had been playing in their cubby house ran excitedly inside, to tell me that a Clown was on the back road.

I thought this really odd & thought they may have mistaken a person in festival costume going past relating this to the clowns in their story books.

When we got out the back though I couldn’t see anyone at all, so didn’t think anymore on the subject, until..

God’s appointed meetings

A few weeks later, two older American ladies called out from the back gate.

I soon found out that there had indeed been a Clown visiting Dalat a few weeks earlier & that some of the neighboring children had had photos taken with the Clown.

And these were the photos being shown to me now…

The ladies thought they may have been my girls in the photo when they saw my girls playing in our yard.

I knew who the children were in the photos so pointed them in the right direction & invited them back for a cuppa once their photo delivery was complete.

aquatic beautiful bloom blooming

Let me introduce you to these two amazing women

Who became very dear friends & mentors, true pearls found in the Orient…

They have both passed now but their legacy & influence in my life & my children’s lives are forever an eternal blessing, Betty MitchellMary Lois Chandler whom I knew as Lois...

A beautiful time of community & friendship followed with Betty, Lois & the other international staff at Dalat.

After being invited to a Friday night potluck later that week…which led to My story

Well my tea & delicious peanut pancake are now finished.

I hope you enjoyed our little trip down memory lane & meeting these two amazing women.

Until next time dear friend,


You’re most welcome to join me in The Reading Nook


In Prayer

© 2018 Jennifer M. Ross, All Rights Reserved. Photo on

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31 thoughts on “Penang, Pearl of the Orient

  1. Oh, Jennifer, what an adventure you had, living in Malaysia! Your girls are so lucky to have been introduced to a multi-cultural experience at such a young age. Great memories for you to share with us!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Lori,
      Lovely to have you over, yes lovely memories & such a legacy of God’s love & grace.

      It is a lot more commercial there now then it was back in the 70s/80s but still culturally rich.
      Blessings to you too.


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