Friday, December 31, 2010

Bonjour! Cava? Merci Au revoir

Those are about the only French I truly know, plus a couple of other non-words (not really useful words).

2nd day into Paris and I'm almost done with the city! Weather is alright, not as great as it was in NY when I was there (b4 the snow came tumbling down), but good enuff, at least it's not snowing, raining, or snowing & raining, and windy etc etc...

1st impression of Paris - It's not very clean. Or organzied. Haha! It's called the City of Lights, but when I was out on Wed night up the Eiffel Tower, the surroundings did not actually seemed very bright..I wonder why????

Yes, it's not very clean, the streets seemed grey n dusty...Isit the winter?? I don't know. Compared to NY, i think NY seems cleaner.

How do I find Paris? Hmm alot of pple told me I'll LOVE Paris, like when they told me you'll LOVE NY. Well, I agree with the latter, I really do like (or love) NY. It's a great city really! But Paris, hmmmmmm.... somehow feel that it doesnt rank up there with NY. Parisian lovers dont hit me on that, it's only my personal opinion. The city doesnt seem all too friendly as well. General impression of the French - They smoke ALOT! They don't seem all that friendly (unless u speak French). That's like a deterrent, altho there are LOTS of tourists, they just seem unfriendly towards non-French speaking pple. Of cos there are nice French! When I was lugging my 2 big bags manouvering the Metro up and down the stairs (yes another thing i wana complain! Bloody stairs! Why can't they have elevators or escalators?? Stairs man!), pple came up to help me carry my bag, which is very comforting to me. Cos i was really struggling with the bloody stairs!!!!!

Then when i was walking up the cobbled streets (bloody streets), a lady came forward to help me carry my smaller luaggage, which was so nice!! Lady mind you, I felt so touched! Those were the bright sparks in the French community. Other than that, they were..let's just that. Nothing more nothing less, not much of a smile. After coming from NY, it's sorta a minus point where pple in NY seemed so friendly and nice! I mean u just strike a conversation standing in line queuing @ the cashier or bus station!! Here, it's the language man. U sorta feel very out of place. I don't feel that way when i'm in Bangkok or Vietnam where language is also a problem, but here it's really quite extreme.

Anyway, i'm not saying Paris is not nice, i'm just saying personally it's not THAT great as what some pple put it. Well maybe if I came with someone else, it might be different! Hahaha... But i still prefer NY. NY is a place I don't mind going back to... Things r not cheap there, but compared to Paris, NY is heaven!! Shopping heaven!!! Haha!! Paris is bloody expensive! Just a plain baguette with ham and cheese is like Euro 7. I can make that for SGD2 lor. Luckily there's supermarket. U'll realli go broke ...

On another note, good thing happend to me today. I bumped into (or rather this lady approached me) a Shanghainese auntie, asking me to help her buy LV bags. WooHoo! Gave me a chance to walk into LV with an agenda and enjoy being served! Haha! So nice walking into the branded store and looking at the bags, not batting an eye on the price (cos i'm not paying for it!!) Anyway cos there's quota per pax, she wanted to buy more so she asked me to help her buy. Money on hand (cash) i walked into LV with a purpose! Got down to business after browsing through the expensive bags and got the ones she wanted and walked out with LV bag in hand! The great news?? She didnt take the tax refund! So in a way it's like a commission for me to help her buy! Woohoo! Just like that, doing nth, enjoying myself in a branded store, I earned abt Euro 130 in less than 30mins!! Haha That means free accomo in Paris + some cash left for food!! Fantastic!! Anyone wants to use me?? I will agree provided I claim the tax refund! Haha

Anyway these pple r crazy (esp the Chinese from China) they buy like nobody's biz man! And the bags are not cheap (ok by my standard not cheap) but I think it's like ALOT cheaper than in China or even Singapore. 1 medium size bag is like Euro 600-700! Siao i wouldn't spend my $$ like that! I don't mind taking a free bag but def will NOT buy it. Anyway don't buy a bag that cost that much for me, just give me the $$. Haha I am a firm believer of the philosophy 'SHOW ME THE MONEY' as popularized by Jerry Maguire.

1 more day in Paris and I'm Home Sweet Home. Been very tiring 6 weeks of travelling, not easy.. Esp dealing with the bloody flight delays and train delays, those r even more tiring.. TIme to go back home, rest, massage & go swim! I miss swimming in the pool, with the sun shining on my back. I need warmth & sun! I miss the heat back home!! And I need a good massage on my shoulders. They are killing me, very painful. And my little toe is swollen for 1mth already...Ya I'm walking hours ard with a swollen toe...What can I do, just endure and move on...So need to get that looked at when i get back...

And I will be back writing abt my adventures when I get back home with all my stuff sorted..Till then....

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Crazy!! Massive Train breakdown out of NY towards Airport direction resulted in thousands stranded for hours!!!!!!

There I was sitting in the train at 2.55pm, thinking how wonderful it is to go back to the hotel, slack and lie in bed, watching videos and enjoying when suddenly, the train stopped in between stops. The reason - a train was disabled. So we were stuck in the train halfway in the middle of nowhere for 30mins. Then, they said power failure at the stations, cannot go forward. So just like that, I was stuck in the train with many others for 1hour only to reverse back into NY penn station where we boarded the train. Then chaos erupted at the station where thousands of people were clueless of what was happening as trains after trains were delayed and delayed. Time came and past and before we knew it, it was 530pm and no train was moving.

By instruction, many pple, including myself moved to another form of tpt - PATH to get to Newark, only to find out that it doesnt work. Cos PATH DID NOT get to Newark!! Even tho we were specifically told that it would! Talk about communication!! Now, I miss Singapore's efficiency. At least we have like 1 operator that speaks to each other, and you kinda would not be misled by the operators if a breakdown occurs! Here, it's more 'GOOD LUCK TO YOU!!' cos no one really cares! It's just all computer screens showing 'Delayed', 'Cancelled'. Go figure what to do! Go ask ard how to get ard to your destination. Hours were spent trying to figure a way to get to another place.

Lucky for me, I met a group of people trying to get to Newark and I followed them through PATH to somewhere in New Jersey. There we waited and waited for like 1hr, by then it was like 7pm and no trains were moving to Newark, even tho pple were saying yes there are! It's just very frustrating when things like that happened. Cabs are not so easy to get, not like in Singapore. So we waited... Luckily there was a family staying @ Ramada near the train station we were stranded at and I followed them to the hotel, and got on the free shuttle to the airport to catch my shuttle bus back to hotel. Still, I had to wait till 9pm b4 the shuttle arrived due to the bad road conditions (snow covered roads). Then by the time i reached the airport, it was 10pm. Waiting and waiting for 40mins b4 the shuttle came, and now at 11.44pm, i'm lying in bed (it's freezing cold even tho i set the temp @ 30degrees celsius), writing this.

This was how I spent the whole day! Well actually it started out pretty well, sky was clear, sun was bright trains were running smooth, I was in NYC shopping @ H&M, happily walking through snow covered roads...

The wind was also damn strong that it blew me off my track!!! I had to resist being blown off track!!!

but that was short lived, cos what came after was 8hrs of nightmare!! Now I'm back... Actually I'm glad that I stay near airport. Imagine I was one of those trying to get to the airport on the trains, I would have missed my plane & be helpless!!! Now i'm near airport, I dont have to worry too much abt not getting to the airport, just be sure to catch the shuttle! Hopefully tomorrow will be good for flying. I've been stranded in NY for 2 days...Paris Paris, will I ever get there??

Sunday, December 26, 2010


Last day in US, going to Paris tomorrow. Excited and nervous and tired... Hate the cold in Paris, but excited to see the city. Tired of the constant moving ard with TWO big luaggages and also from my extensive 1 day tour to Niagara Falls which consisted of 2 overnighter. It's Xmas here, quiet. Time to get alone time b4 moving to staying in hostel in Paris (no alone time).

It's been almost 6 weeks away from home.....

More updates soon when I get back home in 2011.....

Merry Xmas!!

Friday, November 05, 2010

Beijing Travelogue

Oooo, finally got down to writing my travelogue after 2 weeks. Procrastination is such a powerful yet dangerous habit. So here goes, with some narrative and photos to showcase the fun I had with 2 other frens!

1st of, to answer tons of qns floating in the minds of my frens out there (i've answered every single one with the same reply) - Why are u going to BJ for hol? Ans: Song! Cannot meh! Sometimes, u gota go to places u'r more familiar with, with familiar faces (chinese) and familiar language (mandarin). Somehow it makes for a much easier task during travelling when u can actually speak the language. & pple think u'r from China too (southern part)

Yes, why can't I go BJ for hol? Now, answer that pls... I don't have to be visiting all exotic plcs all the time, in time these plcs will no longer be exotic! Anyway, who is to say BJ is not exotic, it's relative to where u'r from! Anyway, it was a good trip to BJ, fun & great sight seeing. Of cos, there's sth abt BJ that u nd to know, or even is wide spread enuff for e'ryone to know:

人多,车多,交通差!(Translated: Crowded with people & cars & terrible traffic)

Yes, u do know how many pple there are in China, so it seems majority live in BJ, + tons & tons of visitors make BJ damn crowded! U don't have to fret abt being lonely or alone, cos there'l be a grp of pple next to you every min! No matter what time u take the MRT, it'll be so crowded. We nvr had a chance to sit in the MRT for the entire duration (& we took the train almost e'ryday, at diff times too!!)

Traffic is bad, almost all the time, & loads of cars on the road!!! Bicycles which used to be the main sight on roads, are overtaken by cars! Foreign made cars! But i must say, their public tpt is cheap! MRT is RMB2 anywhere u go (it's per trip basis), public bus is bet RMB1-2 (per trip basis unless u take a really long dist), and cabs are very cheap!! Meter starts at RMB10, and we took a 20min cab ride for RMB11 only!! Yes, the meter jumped RMB1 just mins b4 we alighted. But of cos, to fight the traffic, opt for MRT, even tho u have to fight ur way through the massive crowds, but still better than stuck in non-moving crowds of cars on roads!

So anyway, let's do a summarized chronological list of events/places during the 8 day trip (only the highlights):

Moi & Mei Mei arrived on Sun morn, while Angeline arrived at night (different flight), but the 2 of us spent most of the day just sleeping in the hotel & walking abit along Wang Fu Jing (our hotel is walking dist from there).

Officially, our journey begins on Mon with a trip to Forbidden City. & Yes, crowds & crowds of pple even though we arrived at 9am which is damn earlier already!!! Guess u can forget abt trying to fight the crowd (u just can't win). So forbidden city, well majestic buildings & such, but after a while, all the buildings look the same with different names... But it's a large area! And we spent 2hrs just walking thr from south to north.

At TianAnMen Gate en route to Forbidden City. U need the skill of quick snap in order to avoid crowd in ur photo

Doing our jumps in a 'secluded' area of Forbidden City, only to start attracting crowds

One of the highlights of the trip was the visit to Great Wall. We purposely chose a more remote & less well-known Great Wall - Huang Hua Great Wall aka Water Great Wall. So called because a dam is built ard it, so u sorta have a great wall surrounded by water (got mountain, got water). The view is fantastic, weather was fab! & best of all, NO ONE!!! Ok not entirely no one, but like 10 pple only?? That's like a great feat considering u'r in China! So it's like a paradise! Take all the photo u want, & u'r guaranteed (almost) no excessive or unwanted images!! We went crazy snapping ard at the fantastic view & posing funny for the camera, not afraid cos no one is there to laugh at us! And all these for just RMB2 per pax! Yes, we paid only RMB2 not cos tt's the entrance fee, but cos we went up through local villagers' farms, so we'r paying to trespass.

Look at the view man!! & Yes very steep

The view is fantastic!!

Air is so much fresher in the remote area!! & so fun climbing up the super duper steep steps and walkway! Mind you, this great wall is not refurbished at all, so it's quite worn down, with fallen walls, shelters, and slippery walkways, so gota be careful when trekking up! We had to climb up a small part of the mountain & access the great wall via a metal ladder that is just put there by someone (maybe the villagers??) with not much security. Just have to trust that the ladder is still there after many (a few??) pple have used it. It wasnt even secured to the wall, just placed against it. But we survived! & so did many others b4 and after us! Yes, we thot we were only like the 2nd grp up, but shortly after, a grp of ang moh joined in the fun.

The makeshift ladder to go up

Very slippery... No friction!
THe view makes the tough climb worth it!

It's not an easy climb, and really quite steep & slippery, so hold on to the walls (if there is) for support. But it is a really great plc for photography or portfolio cos u don get disturbances from unwanted pple walking by keke.. Yes, we spotted a couple taking wedding photos there! We just wondered how did the bride climb up that ladder cos they did not bring much eqpt up, and we didnt see changed clothes...& she was wearing a big puffy red evening gown.

A series of group shot, jumping, posing.. Lots more, these are just a few

Yes, I'm standing at the edge!! No walls!!

After almost 3 hrs, we head to Ming tombs & sacred walkway. Let's just say, paying RMB65 for Ming tomb is the worst investment of the entire trip. U go in, nothing much to see or photograph, just a few fake replicas of coffins & signs. It's like 'That's it?". But then again, it's the feeling of 'I'll regret if I don't go, but after going I regret even more' Hahahha... & that place was the least crowded place of all touristy places!! Really can feel the difference...

Our days followed with more tourist attractions like TianAnMen Square, where we Q-ed for 1hr before getting inside to view Chairman Mao's preserved corpse (it's just a 2min walk through the plc), Temple of Heaven. Of cos we went to the summer palaces (old and new) and WOOHOO, how big are they!! I mean if u thot the new summer palace (YiHeYuan) is big, wait till u see how big the old one (YuanMingYuan) was!!! Super big! Words can't really describe. Let's just say BJ Uni & QingHua Uni are currently occuping space used to be YuanMingYuan. Add those 2 up, plus the current site of YuanMingYuan, & i suppose even more acres of land..... We walked like a million miles that day!!! FYI, we didnt' manage to complete the entire YiHeYuan. TOo big I tell u...

The Suzhou street @ Yi He Yuan

YiHeYuan, the view is fantastic, photos don't really do justice

The ruins @ Yuan Ming Yuan

Attractions wise, we also went to Tianjin for a day trip (nothing much there) and Da Guan Yuan (site of filming of the old Dreams of Red Mansion). The last one was not intended, but added last min as we were all caught in the fever of the Dreams of Red Mansion which was showing on TV during our stay in BJ. Yes, it captivated our attention such that we rushed back every nite for 2hrs' dose of the TV series!!! Even though it's hard to understand what the heck they were talking abt, we were still mesmorized by the entire tv series for whatever reason! Sometimes, u cannot tell why u like sth, u just like it :)

Night scenery @ TianJin

@ Da Guan Yuan. Aunties & Uncles gathering to dance.

Of cos, one of the impt event of the trip was shopping & food. Food wise, we realized Bj-ers have huge appetite!!! They really eat ALOT!!! Portions of their food are like super huge!!! & prices r reasonable! Like RMB6 for a plate of dumplings (12 pcs), that's like SGD1+ for 12 dumplings! & the dumplings r not small. RMB2 for mutton satay twice the size of LPS satay. Oh, not to forget the delicious yogurt!!! Lao Beijing Yogurt... Yum Yum!! I miss it man!! RMB3-4 for 1, thick, creamy, smooth & not too sweet! Got liquid & solid version (custard like consistency). Yum Yum...... But one thing is, the food there is damn oily & salty... & they like mains rather then sides. Like a bowl of beef noodles consist of tons of noodles, but only 3 pcs of beef, or heaps of rice to go with the veges.

Angeline taking a bite. It's a damn small worm, fried to crisp

Street Food!! We tried dumplings, hot pot, beef balls, soya bean curd etc etc

Some pan fried fish with doughy cake. It's nice but abit salty

A story about the above photo. One day, straits times happen to publish a story on Beijing Snack food & featured this place called Niu Men Snacks (九门小吃)being a disappearing art/culture. So we ventured to this place to check it out. So happen, Angeline brought the newpaper article, which featured this man. HIs not some ordinary street vendor ok. His some 6th generation famous sugar man! He makes shapes out of malted sugar (by blowing air into the sugar to create the shape) & he has been on TVs etc (many clippings at his store). So we asked Angeline to present the ST article to him as a gift, & she did!! In return, he made a sugar dog for her FOC (she even did the blowing). So that's the story of the english newspaper article seen pasted on his store (in case next time u go & see an english cutting). We hereby presume he will paste it on his board... Morale of the story, bring along all kinds of newspaper cutting of places u'r gg to visit, which feature particular famous person. U nvr know what u get in return.

Tianjin Dog's Don't Care bun (狗不理)FYI, not so nice (according to my frens). Skin is thick, filling is minimal.

A quite famous custard shop! Delicious custard!! Oh & BJ yogurts are the best man! I miss it so much.....

Abt shopping, hmmm good man! Keke, remember to go Beijing Zoo MRT station, walk out & u'll find the big wholesale market!! Damn crowded yes, but good shopping! Quality of clothes there is pretty good! I bought nike jacket & pants for like RMB40 each! Super cheap, and good quality ok! ALot of things r under RMB30 each!!! No nd to bargain (like what u have to if u go silk market). Bags for RMB39 each, sweaters for RMB30, or long sleeve blouse for RMB75 (gd quality material). Haven!!! Ya, sometimes i regret not buying more, esp winter clothes. Ya so next time, immediately head for Wholesale center @ beijing zoo (don't go silk market liao). Heard from my fren still got other plcs like Dong Si, or Wu Dao Kou. Too many places!!

Yes, u may have qns in ur head, thinking 'Hows the toilet condition?', 'Is spitting still common?', 'Taxis safe?'.

Ans: Toilet conditions are aceptable. At least they have doors, and flush works. Only they don't have toilet paper most of the time, but really it's good enuff! At least u can bear to enter & finish ur biz. Spitting not so much now, tho it still happens, but has improved. Altho we noted that act the younger generation spits more than the uncles. So.....Mayb it'll nvr really go away?? & taxis r safe! We've taken then quite a no of times, & they'r all very honest, by meter & wun take you for a ride! Ask for the receipt after the ride just to make sure, cos if they cheat or sth, they'll most prob not give u the printed receipt.

8 days, some pple say 'Wah spend so many days in BJ got things to do meh?'. We didn't travel out of BJ, only Tianjin for 1 day, yet we feel just right, not too slack. SO imagine those tour grps doing 8 days including BJ, TJ & CD. Must be very rushed. I like the way we travelled, relax, & we can do what we like according to our own timing. We didnt go out very early, like 9+, leisure leisure, still we enjoyed all the things :) Able to shop at our own timing. Good experience. U do improve your chinese after 1 week. Like what we imposed (to speak Mandarin in BJ, which unfortch didnt quite make it cos Angeline kept breaking the rules!!) Fun, look forward to the next trip

Friday, October 29, 2010

Stay Tuned for Updates about my recent Beijing Trip.

Been Busy travelling have not had time to reorg the photos, get them uploaded and write the travelogue... Be patient, AKAN DATANG!!

This Blog is still very much ALIVE

Monday, October 04, 2010

Yes, I have successfully self-taught myself Freestyle swimming! Youtube is so wonderful! Thanks so much for the creation of Youtube, which taught me how to swim the freestyle!

Just completed 40laps (as usual) with 23 laps using the full freestyle technique. Man, freestyle is tiring! I'm like panting mad aft 1 lap! I can swim non-stop in breastroke, but i cannot sustain freestyle non-stop! Need to like rest to catch my breath after 1 lap b4 continuing another lap. So in the end it took me like 20-23mins to complete 10 laps, when usually i take 15mins for 10 laps of breastroke. But it's an achievement! Happy! I may not be so technically correct in my strokes, but i think passable...

Need to practice more. Next target - 10 laps non-stop (i.e. no resting after 1 lap at poolside).

You know how relaxed swimmers appear when they do freestyle? Don't be fooled! Haha, u may LOOK relaxed, but it's hardwork man! Catching breath is so tough, i feel like perpetually out of breathe even when I have taken a breather. Really trains ur lung capacity man! I bet I'll have bigger lung capacity after training freestyle hahah! Man, to think I thought I have pretty good lung capacity and ability to hold my breathe! The youtube site even suggested doing 1 full lap without breathing! That's like 50m without breathing! How is that even possible! Ok, the swimmers from the youtube site were able to do it...But it's like ridiculous hahah! I'm doing 3 strokes per breathe, and tt's already difficult.


Saturday, September 25, 2010

Swimming Pool Etiquette

I think I need to edificate people of the necessary etiquette at a public swimming pool to ensure e'ryone is happy. Yes, unfortunately, there are some pple who do not practice that, n i'm not trying to be bias or discriminate agt certain nationality but they are the ones e'rytime who are not sensitive to others. I'm only talking abt those that swim @ the pool i go to e'ry wk (not sure about outside public pool tho), so I re-iterate here what shld be practiced @ a pool:

1) DO NOT swim into other pple's lanes! Imagine how irritating it is when u were 1st there, swimming happily when suddenly pple started to occupy ur lane whn the pool is so big n empty;

2) DO NOT zig zag across lanes when swimming! Swimming pool is rectangle, and lanes are straight, not zig zag;

3) If u'r not swimming, DO NOT hog the swimming area (esp the ends of the pool). Swimming pool is for pple to swim. Ok if u are not a good swimmer & u want some R&R after a few laps, please stick to 1 corner & don't spread urselfs across several lanes! There are pple who WANT to swim!

4) If u'r trying to compete with your frens, pls do so professionally! DO NOT splash ard foolishly and knock into pple's swimming path. This is especially irritating when you are NOT even any good in swimming!!

5) DO NOT touch other pple's things! This is a BIG NONO!!! Things don't juz appear out of nowhere @ the edge of the pool for u to take, they have to come somewhere & from someone! So DON"T ever ASSUME u can juz take it & use it!

6) Be flexible & Move ur butt! Do not stand still & hog the ends of the pool & 'will' the swimmers to move their butt to the next available space to complete the lap. The pool can be crowded alot of times, so swimmers have to be mindful of tt & move for actual swimmers to complete the lap, NOT to wait for the swimmers to move (when sometimes it's easier for stationary swimmers to move). U don't own the pool ok

I like swimming, & I enjoy uninterrupted swims, so all the above r distracting.... Maybe it happens to alot of other pple, but my observations so far still pinpoint to this grp of nationality (and it's not just the same grp of swimmers, or rather non-swimmers). I just need to vent my anger, nothing personal...

Oh yea, not to mention, they are very loud alot of times

Saturday, September 11, 2010

New resolution for the year (maybe next year too) -- To learn freestyle swimming!! Yes, I'm good @ breast stroke, able to swim 1hr non-stop (sometimes 90mins), but i know NOTHING abt freestyle. Although I love how it looks when someone does tt style of swimming, and love how stylish it looks, I seriously dono how to swim it, and have not tried to learn it until now. Cos of my knee problem, freestyle is a better stroke cos it involves less friction to the knees. So now, i only know how to kick (kicked 18 laps @ the pool just now) but I dono how to move my upper body! Tried to do upper body (i.e. the hands) just now but failed seriously, almost drowning. SO EMBARRASSING cos there are alot of pple @ the pool just now.

Dono how to learn the arm movements leh.. Any good freestyle swimmer volunteer to teach me? Keke very much appreciated.

Thursday, August 26, 2010


I'm sure all of you would have read/watched the news about the Manila hijacking of HK tourist bus. Yes, i just returned from that country the day after the incident. It was all over the news channels with live footage of the situation. Sad Sad incident that happened...What was to be the relaxing tour ending soon, became a night mare for all of them. Deepest condolescences to all the tourists, especially those who lost their lives or lost their loved oneds.

& to further prove how small the world is, I met with the group of HK tourists on Sat during my tour as well! Yes, I rem the tour guide (whose picture I confirmed in the papers yesterday). I remembered my group of 3 arrived at the bamboo church and was just about to head up for a better view & camera taking when the group just swarmed in ahead of us. & there i was thinking 'damn they're going to crowd the area & spoil my view!!'. But they actually were quite accomodating. & that was the last i saw them.

THen on Mon, the news came out, & i was thinking "OMG, could it be the same group?", but i couldnt get confirmation cos no photos/footages were shown, until yesterday on the papers, I saw the photo of the tour guide & "BAM"!

Even tho I was not in their group, it was a close enuff encounter. I still remembered the grp was quite lively & enjoying their time. TO think that 2 days later, the whole situation would change!!

But, the atmosphere in Manila was not tense at all. I mean where I was staying (Makati), it seemed that everything was alright with no feel of being in dangerous grounds etc. But you never really know...

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Photos from Lx3

Ok, tested the camera in Australia, mainly along Manly Beach @ Sydney. Not going to say terrific, cos i'm still getting used to manual settings, and trying to adjust the ISO, shutter speed, aperture n stuff, but i'm pretty satisfied with the end results. With more practice & reading up & testing, i should be able to take better photos! Of cos it can't compare to DSLR, but not as bad la..

A few photos to share with you guys!

Picture speaks a thousand words, so i shall not elaborate, but i kinda like them... Of cos not as pro as those really professional photog using dslr, but good enuff for a semi-dslr camera... Keep working on it! ANyone with a tripod to donate to me??

Sunday, July 11, 2010

I got Lumix LX3!!

Yes, finally, after so many months of talking talking talking, i finally got it! LUmix LX3. Yes, after much deliberation, it's still LX3. Too many good reviews to let go! The only thing is, i didnt get a brand new one. I got it 2nd hand from a fren, for $590. Well, he bought it for less than 1 year and used abt 5 times, so still a pretty good deal! Throw in a few freebies like extra batt, camera case, cleaning kit (prob not gg to use on the camera, maybe on laptop) & pretty good to go! $10 discount given for replacing the 8gd with 4gd SD card cos he cldnt find it haha but well good enuff! I actually have a micro sd card of 8gd which i can plug into the SD holder and use for my camera!!

Got loads to start reading abt on the use of the camera, the functions etc so I can fully utilize the functions, of cos to my amateur standards la.. Not a pro anyway but gota make use of the camera else I'll just stick to IA (Intelligent Auto) all the time & defeats the purpose of getting the camera...

Australia shall be my 1st guinea pig to try out the camera. Hope I can use it to reasonable effect & standard & take some good pictures!! Going to try the night scenery, must rem to bring tripod.

Thursday, July 08, 2010


Wow almost 1 mth since i last updated anything. Hmm, what have I been busy with? Busy with work, busy with trying to heal my injured ankle!!! Yes, it's still not recovered. Damn. To think that a sprained ankle is so damn troublesome & irritating! Now i wonder how altheletes can heal that bloody fast! Machiam 2mths they can play at top level again. Must be cos of their higher purchasing power. Got money got talk! Can buy all sorts of high level, high tech machines, treatments etc.. It's bloody irritating esp for me, cos i cannot do any impact exercises, cardio or perform to my fullest. Sian.. Feel like so weak without my weekly exercise regimes.

Chanced upon the HEM ankle rehab program that's s'posed to be very very effective. With lots of good reviews etc, so have been trying it for the past 3 days. Hopes it'll really work. Something new I learnt from the program. Use combination of hot & cold water on your injured ankle to promote blood circulation! Yes, all we've heard about was always ICE ICE ICE your injured area to prevent blood flow, but they don't tell you how to promote blood flow so that the swelling will reduce! By using a combination of hot & cold water therapy, you actually promote blood flow cos it's like a pumping effect! Been doing that once a day seems to be working, but may need a couple more days to verify. After the hydrotherapy, massage the area using Castor Oil! Yes, nvr heard of Castor Oil rite? Me too, but apparently alot of studies have been done on the usefulness of Castor Oil and it is very effective in healing inflammation n injury. So apparently, you're s'posed to massage your ankle with the oil in an upward motion, from foot up to knee and thigh so that you'r massaging the blood flow up towards your heart, and muscles tissues (injured ones) away from the injured area. Massaging has to followed after hydrotherapy to promote blood circulation. Best to do it at nite, just before sleeping, then drop a few more drops of Castor Oil on the ankle area, calf, foot and wear a socks over your foot.

Of cos exercises are important to work your ankle back to normal! If you leave your ankle to heal by itself, it'll take a longer time, and when they recover, they'll become weaker. So it's best to start ankle exercises to work your ankle and maintain its flexibility and mobility & of cos strength. But of cos, do not stress your ankle too much cos when injured, they can't take too much pressure else it'll nvr heal properly. As your ankle recover & get stronger, less painful, increase the exercises to build on ankle strength. You're actually s'posed to continue so that you can maintain your ankle strength! Alot of pple think their ankles are strong enuff, but in actualy fact, sometimes they're not. My therapist told me i have loose ankle, even for my uninjured ankle (left side) and that's actually quite dangerous cos it may be more susceptible to sprains. So i've gota work harder on my left while my right side recovers.

10 weeks have passed. I really really hope it'll recover by month end.... that's like 3 wks to go. Best is next week no more minute pain... Damn. See la, sprained ankle is no fun ok. So pple out there, take really good care of yourself!! Watch your steps! Don't think that you'r damn fine now, so don't watch how you walk or where you step!!! Don't wait till you regret!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

New Jersey Woman Wants to Weigh 1,000 Pounds

Yes, you heard it right here! This woman is in a bid to become the fattest woman in the world, aiming to hit 1000 pounds to gain that title. This is crazy!

p/s: I kinda like the commentators' sacastic remarks. Maybe she shld realli start to listen to other pple...

Of cos, embracing themselves for who they are is no crime! I'm proud that she's not shying away from being bigger than normal! Hey, being fat is not a crime! But stuffing herself full of greasy, unhealthy food to gain tremendous amount of weight is the same as starving oneself of nutrition & food in a bid to become a size 0. It is so wrong!! Obesity is the gigantic version of anorexia. It is a disease that needs to be cured. It is wrong to starve yourself empty to gain a distorted version of the perfect body, so it should also be wrong to put on the pounds unhealthily to balloon. It harms your body, health & everything!

She claims to be healthy, but she has trouble even moving an inch ard. How is that healthy? With that amount of body fat, it is not hard to list down all the possible harms her body is facing: Heart disease, clogged artery, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes etc etc... Haven she heard of that fat guy who was stuck & glued onto the bed & had to be excavated by firemen?

She gave birth to her daughter at 500+pounds, a difficult feat i must say. Imagine one day, when she can no longer move an inch, wouldnt she miss taking small walks with her husband & daughter? Or if whatever happens to her, with her gorging, who knows when she'll get a heart disease... Isnt that like selfish to her loved ones?

I'm not against pple being bigger. No No! I'm not skinny myself. It's good to love yourself for who u r. But to deliberately gain weight to an unhealthy size is not right. It just is not.

She says she wants to tell all fat ladies ard the world to not be afraid of their size, to be their role model. But i think what she is actually doing is NOT a role model. It is like saying 'It's totally ok, right & not harmful to subject your body & health to this kinda treatment'. Do you want your kids to stuff themselves crazy with tons & tons of food & fall sick? No! I wouldnt want that! Not even for my friends. Having a healthy appetite is different from overeating excessively.

Maybe she has her own thinking, & thinks what she is doing is totally fine. But i think she's harming herself. Apparently she has a website showing pple her life being fat, how she's having trouble moving ard etc etc etc, in a bid to raise $$ to pay for her staggering food bill & it is apparently quite lucrative

& get this, she wishes her children be slim... & what is she doing to teach them on being & staying slim?? Does eating yourself crazy make you slim?? If you want your children to be slim, don't stuff your face with food!!

Yes, her fiance is so totally supportive of her act & he's all of 150 pounds... Woohoo! How surprising.. Ok sorry maybe abit sacastic...

What is the world getting to. Next we know, some girl out there is in a bid to lose incredible amt of weight to be 20kg at age 30 years old! & we get to watch how she vomits out all her food, exercise 24/7 until she faints!

Sorry, but i cannot support this act...

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Fun Time with Fun Videos

Ok someone commented that my blog is very long-winded & lor Sor.. So to lighten up the atmosphere, I shall post some light hearted materials & fun videos.

French Open Karaoke 2010. Yes u didnt expect it but tennis players do have fun!! Singing songs, dressing up & acting silly. Damn bet u didnt know Murray could act funny (tho he still looked very very stiff & uncomfy)

Review of the past French OPen Karaoke.. Quite fun! U will see Fed & Nadal singing!!

& then, who can forget Novak the Joker!! Imitating the shakira & nadal MV Gypsy. FYI, i saw the MV, & it totally SUCKSS!!! Nadal was like just a naked meat, parading around for NOTHING!!!

Of cos who can forget Gatsby commercial! Newest commercial seen on TV. If it were true, i bet their sales would be sky high!! But then again, not e'ryone likes Kimura

Lastly i just want to say, it's sad Fed lost out b4 semi final of French Open. Damn now he's facing the possibility of NOT breaking another record!! But then again, I'm sure he'll come back again!! Go for Wimbly No 7!! That's another record for Fed to equal!! THen US Open No 6!! & Get back No1 for year end again!!!

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Sprained Ankle

Unluckiness has befallen once again... This time, my ankle kena. For someone as active as I am, sprained ankle is one of the worst (if not THE worst) thing that can happen... Means a long long time of 'confinement', cannot do any forms of cardio exercises (like run, cycle, steps, play tennis etc). Yes, I do still go to the gym to do strengthening exercises, but for me, I believe in getting a real workout, if you don't perspire, pant or be out of breathe, it doesnt quite equal a workout. NOT SHIOK in short.

So i shall not elaborate about how the accident happened, let's just say it was stupid mistake by me. Yes, every now & then, i recall what happened and lecture myself on how stupid I was to make that fatefull step & mistake which resulted in a sprained ankle. Damn, If only I could turn back time.....

So after examination, it is diagnosed as a ligament tear, which is not the normal simple sprain. Sprained ankle is categorized into 3 degrees:

1st degree is normal sprain where the ligament is just overstretched. This means you get swelling but recovery is faster. Maybe within 1mth u can move n jump.

2nd degree is partial ligament tear. More time required for recovery cos u need to train your ankle muscle for better mobility. Maybe 1-2mths of recovery b4 u can do slightly vigorous exercise

3rd degree is complete ligament tear. Serious case, may need to cast your ankle to let it heal & prevent movement. Takes even longer to recover.

So my case is 2nd degree, partial ligament tear. Sad case. Means i have to NOT move around for another 1-2months for complete recovery. meanwhile, need to do physio to train ankle muscles so that the injury will NOT recur again. Cos once you've sprained ur ankle, it's easy to do it again...

Lest you think that after recovery period, your ligament will somehow 'grow' back. WRONG!! Ligament, once stretched or torn, will NEVER grow back. It's non-regenerative. Not like your flesh where it grows back after a cut. Once torn or stretched, it stays that way. So actually a ligament tear is somewhat a permanent disability, cos it cannot grow back! Insurance should take this into account, but unfortch, alot of insurances only allow for 'fractures'.

FYI, it's my right ankle that has been sprained. Yes, my poor right ankle, seems to be so damn weathered and mistreated. Every single accident seems to happen to my right ankle. The doc asked if i had sprained my right ankle b4, & i seriously can't remember! I rem i sprained my foot in 2005/2006 when i was in EY. I got 1 wk MC for that but i don't think i sprained the ankle. I think it was the front foot though... Eh ex-EYians and SAT auditors, if you all rem pls let me know. Then i banged my right toe with the door, dropped a heavy weight on my right little toe, pain in the 2nd right toe due to stress..So on & so forth.. All right foot kena. Only thing my left foot kena was bruised toe, but then again, my right toe also kena...

So now the more serious case of sprained ankle. Wah I didnt even get MC for it this time lor. Stupid doc..Even tho i went to see doc on sunday, i think i shld still get MC for Mon mah..sprained leh, & swelling..serious!!!

Luckily (unluckily??) i had a scheduled physio session on the Mon, so went for assessment by my physio therapist, who diagnosed it as ligament tear. So means my ankle will be rather loose now, and weaker cos no more ligament support. The plan is to do physio exercises to strengthen the ankle muscles so that they help to support rather than relyin on the ligament.

Then went for ultrasound therapy! That's the fun & interesting part. Nope it's not those for pregnant ladies, you don do scanning.. rather, u apply a special gel & using the ultrasound hand-held equpiment, massage the affected area for about 15mins. The feeling is abit cool cool cos of the gel, then will feel abit of heat. The purpose is to use ultrasound waves to stimulate the blood flow & to speed up the healing process. By healing i mean the inflammation & the swelling, bear in mind ligament WILL NOT grow back. Quite effective. Thinking of actually buying one (portable one of cos) for investment and can use at home for other purposes (like pain in shoulder or knee etc). They sell it on ebay & US, but cannot find locally...

I even went to Sinseh to see to the injury & they sorta cracked my foot back into alignment. Apparently, due to the sprain, my right ankle was so loose that it somehow became longer than my left ankle. But now that's realigned & i have equal length now... But then again, with ligament tear, not even sinseh can miraculously cure you! They can only place your ankle back in alignment if it was out of alignment. Other than that, nothing much they can do... But if it's a normal sprain, they should be more helpful! But my suggestion is wait for the swelling & pain to subside abit b4 gg. Don't go immediately cos if it's broken, DO NOT go sinseh for massage cos it'll be worse! Even ligament tear, better get a diagnosis first... Sinseh is not wizard or magician...

So now, 6weeks have passed. Been working really really hard @ physio to train the muscles. The trick is to move ur ankle & do resistance exercises to build the muscles. OF cos with the help of an elastic exercise band for best results! Doing at least twice a day, with lots of repetition. Feeling much better, at least the pain has subsided & the ankle is feeling stronger... But still a long way to recovery... Have to keep working hard. Giving myself another month to be able to fully work my ankle. I still wana play tennis & run & etc etc....

Something i learnt from my physio.. My walking posture is wrong & places alot of stress on my knee & ankle. So now gota re-train myself to walk properly. Pelvis out alittle, foot abit more arched...

Monday, May 24, 2010

Letter to My 16-year old self

Saw this article on 8-days, where the editor Jason Hahn & friends started the 'Write a letter to my 16-year old self' action inspired by celebrities who did the same & compiled into a book! Hey, who doesnt wana read abt celebrities dirt & how they wished otherwise for their 16-year old self.

Now, I totally support this! If i could turn back time, i DEFINITELY WOULD!! Those people who say 'no, i will not do anything different', 'every mistake i made is an experience for me & let me grow into who i am today, so i will not change a thing in the past', 'we should look forward, and not think abt past regrets', etc etc etc. All these are BULLSHIT!! You think they are really such a saint? Forgive and move on? i mean, come on, surely they would go 'if only i did that, if only i turned left, if only i waited 10mins'... So many 'If Only'.

I, for one, totally will take up the chance to go back & regroup my life! I mean, some mistakes or things I did were kinda stupid, silly mistakes that cost alot (physically & mentally). So I will take this chance to write a letter to my 16-year old self (heck if i could go even earlier i would, but let's stick to the theme). Please read closely and take the advice!

Dear 16-year old DS,

Too late to worry about your eyes, you are myopic, you cannot change. But fret not, technology will advance & u will correct this problem when u are older...

Blogging is a lucrative business, start early & get the attention you want & u can be the star blogger!!

Start to do yoga & concentrate on improving your yoga skills. DO NOT STOP suddenly & pick up again. Be a yoga expert!! It will become a craze in years to come!

Don't worry too much about the O levels, you'll get good results to get into good college. Also, pursue your best buddies to try out HCJC!! Bullshit all those talk about 6 points being not even good enuff for HCJC, that is rubbish & not true. Gather all your buddies & conquer HCJC!!

Fulfill your tennis dreams once you get into JC! DO NOT WAIT any longer or else you will have to wait another 10yrs to start learning! Join the tennis club in JC, you get free court access & coach to teach you tennis!!! & You get proper coaching & prevention methods so u'll not end up like me now - sprained ankle, knee problem etc...Continue tennis playing into your Uni, cos the courts are FREE!!!

Love PE lessons more, run more! U'll love exercising once you enter Uni, so start early!!

U'll do relatively well in JC, so continue your studies. English will be your downfall, but there's not much you can do about it. PUT MORE EFFORT in F-MAths A Levels!! Somehow, you only managed a B, even though u will get distinction in 'Special Paper'. Weird, yes, but what to do...

Dancing is fun, do your best in JC while u'r in the dance club. Be very very careful when you are skipping school (even though there is officially no lesson), as u will get caught unfortunately by someone, but this will not be reported.

Take more chances when they present themselves. Hestitation may cost you a lot of missed opportunty (when it comes to matters of the hearts).

When you enter Uni, immediately start using the facilities - gym, swimming pool etc!! You have paid for them since the day you enter, so use them!!! Start the running regime, it is really very fun to run around NTU, believe me.

You'll meet great friends in Uni, so keep them (Alvin, Superhose, HX etc etc). DO NOT Attempt to get a vacation job @ F&B. Pay is not fantastic, the supervisor sucks & not fun! Apply to work at the clinic near your block, the pay is ok, hours not bad & the doctor is nice, so do it early to earn more during your spare time!

Learn to like Finance more, it will make more money! Start to look at stocks & shares, buy Apple shares if you have the money. Buy Wilmar. Once you get the money, buy condo for investment. Aim for The Carribean 1st.

You will unfortunately head to E&Y as an auditor, but fret not, your life will not be as terrible as others. Though tough, u will meet many many friends there. Treasure them. You will meet good clients, and some good bosses.

Gymming is your pastime, start real gymming as early as possible, learn to love running & doing cardio & weights, they will do good or your body. Be really really careful with sports, wear the right shoes, tie them up properly & DO NOT attempt any stupid stunt, or else you will regret it!

Enjoy life!! U are only 16, go travel around the world, play sports before you get too old!

Your older more matured self,
Moi (DS)

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Redang To GO High Class

Extracted from Today newspaper dated 13 May 2010

According to a report in Malaysian daily The Star, Terengganu State Tourism, Culture, Arts and Heritage Committee chairman Za'abar Mohd Adib cited protection of the environment and area's coral reef in particular, as the reason behind plans to reduce number of tourists to the island to 160,000 annually. Currently, tourism figures stand at 200,000 annually.

Government will NO LONGER approve construction of chalet-type accomodation on the island. Only hotels rated 5-star and above will be allowed to be built. Hotel rooms will eventually cost no less than USD500 a night, and current chalets catering for backpackers will also have to be upgraded and raise their rates.

To further protect marine life, only eco-friendly sunscreens can be used in the future. Tourists will be briefed at entry points on the use of these eco-friendly creams.

This is crazy! Is the m'sian govt trying to reap us folks off? Redang to be high-class beach resort? Since when do we need another Bahamas? Reduction of 40,000 tourists annually means abt 3,000 less pple can go to Redang per month. So now we have to Q-up and register our names WAY IN ADVANCE to get to Redang? & will there be a priority system in place then? There are not many fantastic dive locations in M'sia, now with this restriction, it's going to get even more difficult for beach goers & dive enthusiasts to find a dive haven! So if a tourist does not want to go diving or snorkelling, is he/she allowed to go and NOT count towards the restricted figure?

&What's the deal with the hotels? USD500 and above? That's extortion!!! Bloody hell, i might as well fly over to Bali or Mauritius if it's going to be so damn expensive in Redang!! That's discrimination. So Redang is going to be an ATAS island in future? Only the rich & famous can go. Us poor normal blue/white collars would not be able to afford USD500/nite!! What's wrong with those chalets? Or cheaper hotels? Not eco-friendly? Being 5-star & expensive will bump you into being eco-friendly?? This is ridiculous! I've never heard of such a restriction or rule in other countries. I don't think even Cairns have that (tho nothing is reali cheap in AUstralia) but i'm sure i can find something cheaper there. I know govt band accomodation on Sipadan island (east malaysia) but at least we can get relatively inexpensive accomodation on other islands not far from Sipadan! So what? Do we have to stay on the mainland instead & travel the 45mins boat ride to Redang daily for a dive in future? & get permit each time to go dive in REdang due to the restriction in number of tourists? Sipadan has that, but let's not forget, when you go to Sipadan, you have other islands n dive sites further away to explore (Mabul or Kapalai). In Redang, there's juz Redang. Where else do you go? Perhentian? I might as well stay on Perhentian if i wana dive in Perhentian...

Eco-friendly sunscreen? Now that's really something new!! So we have to buy those bloody expensive eco-friendly sunscreen just for Redang now? Or do u provide FOC? Or do you charge exhorbitant rates to tourist at the entry points?

All these restrictions. Wow, in future maybe Perhentian will kena as well! So what to do now? Better all rush to Redang before it's too late!! Better rush to Perhentian b4 these rules apply to the island..Luckily I went to Redang couple of years back...

Monday, May 03, 2010

Finally, after 10 years of 'co-habiting' with my sis, I have my own room back to myself!!! For the next 3 months.... While she's away on the Work and Travel program in USA at some theme park in Ohio!

He He, better than nothing! Don't have to worry abt waking her up in the morning, or she waking me up late at night...I can even sleep on her bed whenever I want! It's good to have the room back to myself, which I had up until 10 years ago when she grew up & needed to NOT sleep with my parents.....

I will have to enjoy the 3 months of free time in my room!!! Kekekekeke.. Maybe i'll sleep on my sis' bed tonite!!!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Mirror Mirror On The Wall, Which Camera Should I Purchase??

Camera dilemna! So i've been thinking abt upgrading my camera, which is a 4yr old LUmix 'Dono which model', 'Dono what pixel' camera. Well it's abt time actually, cos as much as my old handy Lumix camera is still very usable & some great pictures came out of it (courtesy has to be given to the photographer as well! Hey, it takes good eye to capture good photos!), the specs r not as good as can be! I mean, photo quality can be very much improved with a much better camera specs - like higher ISO, more shutter speed choices, etc etc...

So, after seeing how much a new n improved version of LUmix camera can do (LX3), the thought of upgrading my camera arose & has been lingering in my mind.. So there comes the problem! I'm not camera expert. I can read reviews, but hey, it's really really tough to sieve through thousands of reviews & make a decision based on that! Some of the terms r way too technical to understand how they help or be a disadvantage to users!

But after much research & surfing, I sorta shortlisted 3 candidates... The chosen one COULD very well be from these 3, but who knows! Maybe a dark dark horse may emerge victorious!!

Hereby presenting the Top 3 (or could possibly drop out of the race..who knows)

Camdate No 1

Canon Powershot S90

Camdate No 2

Lumix GF1

Camdate No 3

Lumix LX3

Ok by No means does bigger picture implies preference. It's juz how it was saved. After searching, these are the 3 i sorta took a closer look.

Camdate 1 is Canon, which is a good brand, & i heard some good reviews abt it. It's Powershot but it is rather compact for a powershot. I hated those bulky powershot with damn small screen but this looks sleek & nice! N it has other colours, most notably RED!!! Quite a no of functions, & good specs also. Reasonable price for Canon so makes a good deal.

Camdate 2 is DSLR-ish. & it has a sleek body for DSLR!! Yes, u can attach lens to it but not too sure abt how versatile it is as a DSLR. Maybe need to find out more. Or if any of u have more information to provide, pls do!!! But this camera is bloody expensive! It's costs almost 1500sgd!! For such a small camera & sorta DSLR-ish, it's rather expensive. But reviews have been great & it comes in RED too!! Hey, i'm into the colour stuff, makes camera more interesting, rather than sticking to plain old BLACK. See, even font colour is just black & nth else! Functions wise, it's bter than Camdate 1, since it's DSLR-ish. Looks good on paper & certifications, but pricey.

Camdate 3 is a hybrid bet point & shoot & DSLR-ish. It's a useful camera for the progression in between. My fren was using this when we went to Aussie & it looks good! With quite a no of manual functions, good ISO settings & shutter speed & aperture. Wow i sound pro (but i'm not really pro). Reasonable price as well! I think comparable to Camdate 1 too! But it only comes in BLACK & SILVER, which are rather bland colours.. Ok I can't choose colour for the word SILVER cos there arent any! Damn, if only they come in pink or champagne or red... But overall this is a good camera for pro-wanables & good pricing...

So then what? Seems like i'm verring towards Camdate 3, but I really like Camdate 2 as well. If only it's not tt expensive. Camdate 1 is good for a point & shoot, then so, gota think hard what I really want right now!..

Voters? Advice? Lobangs? Cheap deals?? I accept all!!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

What? Me No Speak Chinese...

I Shall Pretend To Be An English Speaking Chinese Whenever I Roam Shanghai Streets, especially Alone...

I Shall Stop Wearing My Moon-Shaped Earrings To Shanghai Especially!

Why? Cos i'm sick n tired of being 'harassed' on the streets in Shanghai by strange aunties & ladies... They super love stalking the streets for 'victims' to harrass.

What am I talking about? NoNo, not declaration of love or such. These people are promoters for some facial salons n stuff. They love to roam the streets and stalk pple, especially those alone, and lure them to their salons on the pretense that there is free sample. Sometimes, I don't even know what they're talking about! Anyway, they'll juz stop me in my tracks & start blabbering about their salon, facial products, come come we have free samples for u, no obligation just take the free sample, very fast only a few minutes, give u free experience of our facial service with no obligations. Then Poof! My 15mins gone just trying to talk my way outa their incessant blabbering! Sometimes, they use force! Just pull u along for the so-called free treatment! I went for it once, & halfway through, i just told them "Sorry not interested, don't feel like doing anything. I really don't have the time & I wouldn't come back again". But then again almost 30-45 mins gone! Precious time i could have spent shopping for more useful things or watching animation or video clips!

Next time, I shall pretend I know not a single word of Chinese. "Sorry, I don't speak Chinese" & walk away! Hahahaha

Ok, next to my Moon shaped earrings. Seriously, I can't even remember where I bought it from. I suspect they're from BKK, cos I only buy earrings from BKK (ok only a few here in Singapore) but 99% from BKK. Anyway, this pair of earrings is YES very special (I very much admit it). I have never seen another wear it yet... So i can say i have a unique pair for now.. & It always attracts attention. Espeically in Shanghai, where those 'stalkers' roamed the streets.

They'll go "Wow, ur earrings are very unique!" or "Ur earrings are very pretty, where did u buy it from" or "I love your earrings!" Then u spend anther 15mins juz trying to PR PR abit & work ur way outa the conversation. & Mind u, there are all girls, ladies who ask the qns! I mean i don't expect guys to do so, else it'll be really creepy.

So to get myself outa 'trouble' & less wastage of time, maybe i shld stop wearing them, especially to Shanghai. But then again, they are my favourite pair of earrings! & easy to match with any outfit! I shall have to start from next month. Of cos i'm more easy target when i'm out alone, so that doesnt mean i'm NEVER going to wear them ever ....

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Confessions of A Tennis Fan

I have always been fascinated by Tennis. Ever since the secondary school chinese textbook on the historic win by Michael Chang at the French Open. Cool!
So it started with supporting Michael Chang, then noticing big hitter Pete Sampras, Agassi, Pat Rafter etc. But it was only rather superficial, reading abt the tennis matches, seeing how Michael Chang fared (unfortch, those were the days when his days as tennis player were fading...). Then came along Marat Safin, the handsome Russian with the biggest temper! But his stars never did shine too brightly.. Then came players like Andy Roddick, Hewitt, uninteresting & not worth my time.. But the women's tennis became fun & exciting, with Hinggis, Jennifer n of cos Williams.
Luckily for us tennis fans, along came the matured & renewed Roger Federer! Esp after he ditched the pony tail. My fire for tennis re-ignited! But I nvr did came close to learning & hitting tennis balls!
Finally, after years of nvr doing anything to pursue my fav sport, I decided to take the plunge & start doing something! No more conversations like this: A - "U know alot abt tennis, do u play?", Me: "No, I only watch & analyse".
Took abt 5-6 lessons so far, & i think i play ok. Just need more experience on timing... Hence, the investment.
My 1st step to taking tennis seriously! Got myself a pro-tennis racket - Wilson somemore! Sponsor of Roger's racket. Not BLX cos it's abit heavy, but wilson nonetheless. & tennis shoes! Addidas not nike...
Wilson Hyper 2.0.
The frame is red! Looks really cool
Shoes! White with blue, from Addidas
Now is the time to get more serious! Aim to play at least once a week, when I'm not travelling...

Monday, March 15, 2010

Believe It Or Not

Does dream mirror reality or reality mirrors dream? Which is true and which is false?

I’ve had 2 rather horrifying and unimaginable experiences during my week long stay in Hangzhou hotel. Was it my imagination or was I just too damn tired?

I remember vividly that I dreamt of the same occurrence, but I also seriously remember it happening in reality. Once could be dismissed only so slightly as ‘maybe I was dreaming, maybe I was just tired and imagining’, but the 2nd time, that is just purely eerie.

The weird thing? It happened way towards the end of my week long stay, and with 1 so-called relatively peaceful night in between the 2 occurrences…
Now, back in Shanghai hotel, Oh Man! I had a fantastic sleep on the fantastic bed with no interruptions!!

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Federer Clinches his 16th Grand Slam Title!

Roger Federer defeated Andy Murray in 3 straight sets 6-3 6-4 7-6 (13-11) in less than 3hours (161mins) to clinch his 4th Australian Open Title and increased his Grand Slam tally to 16! He becomes the 1st Dad to win a Grand Slam title since Andre Agassi in 2003.

Congratulations to Roger Federer and Good job! It is a fantastic start to the new year 2010, and we wish him all the best for the remaining of the year, with more Grand Slams to come!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Australiogue - Epilogue The Final Chapter

Finally after 2wks of writing, I have finally come to the ending chapter of the trip, the concluding chapter, the epilogue! Phew! It took long enough to get here... Luckily I can still remember stuff from the trip..

This final chapter will focus on the days in Melbourne City area itself, where I spent a total of 3 days (Angeline only 2 cos she left earlier). It was a fruitful 2 (3 for me) days for us, where we spent the time walking ard Mel city, exploring the various tourist sights, did a little shopping (me only a little, Angeline ALOT) & such...

The day of Mel begun on 4th Jan 2010, when we drove 1hr from Mornington to Mel. The drive was rather uneventful, leaving the cool windy Mornington for a sunny Mel! The day started bright & Sunny, with the prospect of good weather to come! Even though the sun was bright, the air was surprisingly cool & the wind slightly chilly! So it was not exactly very hot out there! Quite a nice weather!

After we deposited our stuff at Clara's place. sat down a while to rest, we set out in search of carpark for our vehicle cos the parking at Clara's was only free for 1hr between 8-530pm. So we gota find another place to park our car b4 returning after 530pm for free parking! When u see 1P (8-530pm) it juz means u can ONLY park 1hr free during tt duration stated, & if u exceed, u'll be FINED!! Yes FINED!! There's no way u can buy extra hour! Unless there's a 'ticket' written beneath the '1P' which means u have to buy ticket for 1hr parking during tt duration. It sounds complicated but it's actually quite easy to understand!
Us @ Royal Botanic Gardens

Royal Botanic Gardens

So our 1st stop was Royal Botanic Garden, where we found a 2P parking (means 2hr free). In we stepped into the Botanic Gardens, & it was so much bter than the Adelaide one! At least I don't feel cheated hahaha! It was HUGE!!! Lotsa of blooming flowers, pond etc... I like the feeling of the Botanic Gardens there! IT was a nice almost 1hr walk, & we headed out to find another parking space nearer to the city center. This time we found a 4P (ticket), which means pay for at most 4 hrs of parking, & it'll be free parking aft 630pm. Coincidentally, a lady (v v kind soul) gave us her ticket which still had 1hr to go, so in reality, we paid 4hrs but got 5hrs! Which we needed cos we were there at abt 115pm, so we needed to park till 630pm to get free parking!

SO anyway, after Botanic Gardens, we walked over to Federation Square & begun our small tour of Mel city! We took the city tram (FOC btw), stopped at Bourke Street (Chinatown) and shopped a while! This Chinatown is alot bigger than the one in Adelaide! Then we went to Mel central & QV center. After that, we went over to Crown Casino just for a look! Nope we DID NOT gamble... After all were done, dinner ate, it was after 7pm! We headed back to Clara's place, changed into warmer clothing (cos it's kinda chilly at nite) & headed out to St Kilda's beach for penguin watching! Yes, u heard it! Free Penguin watching!! No nd to pay to go to Philip Island to watch the penguins. U can watch them for FREE at St Kilda's! The crowd is not tt big & u get to b closer to the penguins! Another tip, if u have a torch, bring it! Cos the guides there can provide u with red cellophane that u can wrap ard ur torch so that the beam will be red! & penguins are less sensitive to red light, so it will not harm them!

Night scenery @ St Kilda's

Night scenery @ St Kilda's

NEVER SHINE WHITE LIGHT AT PENGUINS!! Cos they need a long time to adjust and recover from the blinding effect.

Cute Fairy Penguin

Another fruitful day at Mel on 7th Jan, where we started the shopping spree at Queen Victoria market! A must go if u wana get cheap souvenirs, cheap fruits & veges & nuts! Yes, they are cheaper there compared to even supermarkets! Fruits like avocadoes r sold at AUD1 each (yes they may be smaller in size but compared to AUD3.50 each, not much smaller), passionfruits @ 8 for AUD2, or mangoes @ AUD1 each! It's like the pasar malam, selling clothes, souvenirs, food, etc.. Lots of stuff. There was where Angeline started her shopping spree!! Hhaha.. She was damn excited when she saw the currency note pad, which of cos she bought eventually! It's also a good place to grab a cheap & fast lunch where sandwiches/rolls are sold at abt AUD3-4 each, pizzas @ abt AUD5-7, comparably cheaper than outside.

I'm Too Sexy for This Car

After spending half a day at Queen Victoria, we went over to DFO (direct factory outlet) in hopes of landing some cheap buys, but didnt find any that caught my eyes. Next stop, was the Library! Haha, muz b wondering y we went to the library! Their library is actually v grand! & there were a few free exhibits inside! There was one on the history of shopping (yes even that can become 1 exhibit), changing face of Victoria & books & ideas. The exhibits are actually quite interesting..


Inside of the Library

This is a very furnie painting

After the exhibits, we went for a little afternoon tea or rather chocolate dose @ a chocolate cafe! Yum Yum.. The chocolate drink is actually quite good! ALthough it was abit too thick! My order was Spicy Hot Chocolate, v thick spanish hot chocolate drink with a tinge of spice. It was a nice counter balance to the sweetness of the chocolate, but the drink was abit too thick for my liking.. Had to pour water to dilute the taste.

The very very thick Hot Chocolate

After the short break, we went in search for our dinner! Clara recommended a woodfire pizza place & off we went in search of the place! Alas, we took a different bus which took us to the wrong end of the road & we had to take the bus to return to close to our starting point again! After 3 bus changes & several miles walked, we reached the place to discover that it was closed for the New Year! What Luck!~! However, luckily we found another woodfire pizza place & settled our dinner there!

Our most expensive dinner for the whole trip - Eggplant & pizza

& it was time to head back to Clara's for ANgeline to pack & head to the airport & fly home! With us accompanying her to the bus station to take the airport shuttle, we waved goodbye to Angeline. Then we headed off for the night view of Yarra River... It was a nice walk along the river coast, with all the lightings & stuff, although it is not exactly very brightly lit...But managed to capture a few good night photos of the scenery!

Night scenery along Yarra River

Last day in Mel, 8th Jan, left with myself & Clara (for half a day). We started the day with a walk @ Fitzroy Gardens with the temperature soaring to a high of 35 degrees!! A smaller garden compared to Royal Botanic, but it has its own beauties!

Fa Lun Gong demonstration

After a short walk we proceeded to Melbourne museum. It is AUD8.50 for adults but FREE for concession holders (i.e. students) which i so happen to hold! I highly recommend this musuem! It has very interesting exhibits, some permanent, some seasonal, so check out the website b4 u go!

Blob Fish.. How ugly

Spider ahead BEWARE

There were 4 main exhibits when we went - The Fossil (dinosaurs, animals & stuff), bugs, human life & aboriginal art! I think there was a 5th cos i rem seeing sth to do with Melbourne exhibits, but can't rem if it's part of another or one of its own..

Who the Hell wears such shoes?!?!

Me on the Moon

A Big Gold Nugget!!!

Anyways, the fossil exhibits were quite interesting, cos it wasnt all abt dinosaurs. There were interesting facts abt the underwater life, special species of fish, mammals etc... The exhibit on bugs was quite interesting as well, with live exhibits of bugs enclosed in glass boxes (obviously)..

Aborignal art was ok, although alittle dull as compared to the rest but it was interesting to read abt the life struggles they encountered during days of oppression.

I kinda like the human exhibit... Where they showed the various dissected portions of the human & explained way of working for various parts of the human body. There is also a section to educate pple abt reproduction process (which does not allow photography for obvious reasons). There are exhibits on human psychology & behaviour etc...

I'm a Size U!!

Do you know the answer to the remaining 2 spaces??

After the musuem, it was all me alone to explore Mel! I went shopping, finally, for some cheap bargains. Go along Swanston street & u can find quite alot of sale going on & some are quite good buys! I managed to get 2 tops which I like! They have alot of those long maxi dresses, which are cheap but i did not buy. Shld stop myself from buying too many dresses...

The ending figure. Believe me, it started with 31006

& so, after 12 days, 2,215km of car travel, here in ends my travel in Australia... My flight was rather uneventful, no shuai ge, no special encounters etc... By the time i arrived in Singapore, i was dead tired!

My stash of goods from Australia - lots of biscuits (Arnotts, not tim tam), 2 tops, lots of photos & great experience! I miss my Trip!!!!!!! Now it's back to reality back to work...