The Little Princes

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Friday, December 29, 2006

A Sunny Day at Last!

I've been on leave for the past 2 days and its been raining cats and dogs. Wed and Thu I was alone at home cos Wifey had to work. So ended up mainly sleeping, CSing and doing some chores. The rain was non-stop.

Finally today, there was a break in the rain and the sun finally came out! And I had a pretty action packed day:

Click on the photos below to see the set/slideshow

0800: Woke up.

0920: Dropped Wifey at her main office in Depot Road for a "breakfast party". Since I was not invited, I decided to go exploring in Telok Blangah Hill Park by myself. Good opportunity to enjoy nature and see the little things which we take for granted.

Click here to see more Photos!

Interestingly, managed to catch up close a small lizard having its breakfast, and also some "not so smart" birds trying to take a bath on the sunroof of the car thinking it was a pool of water! Duh!

1130: Collected Takashimaya vouchers from Citibank. (Thanks to Ivan!)

1250: Brought In-Laws and an aunt to Vivocity for lunch and shopping. They wanted to try pizza so we went to Spizza's.

1400: Vivocity was crowded but wasn't too bad, considering today is not a rainy day and so near the holidays. Didn't buy anything but managed to take a few snapshots.

Click here to see more Photos!
1630: Brought In-Laws and aunt back home, proceeded to go to Queensway Shopping Centre for some real shopping. Ended up poorer after buying a pair of Levi's 525s and a pair of funky b.u.m. sneakers .... :-P

1810: Decided to go to the new Tiong Bahru market for dinner. Surprisingly, it was not crowded at all on a Friday evening near the holiday season. The rooftop parking is now open. Had raw fish porridge and famous roast meats (char siew, duck and roast pork). Not bad, the roast meats were close but not better than those in HK. Also managed to buy some famous Tiong Bahru Pau for breakfast tomorrow.

Tiong Bahru Market Collage

1900: Reached home.

1930: Wanted to go swimming but ended up watching the first episode of "Beauty and the Geek" Season 2! Interesting "social experiment" where they pair up beautiful girls with super geeks and compete for $$$. Wifey likes the Chinese guy who is the world Rubik's cube champion. He can solve the Rubik's cube blindfolded by just taking a 10 second look and memorising the placement of the colours!

Anyway, maybe I can relate to the show cos many friends (even Wifey) tell me that people from R are all a bunch of geeks ... :-P

2030: Finished show, went for night swimming. First time I've gone swimming this late at home. Quite refreshing, maybe can do it again sometime.

1100: Started processing and uploading the photos, including typing in this blog entry. By the time I finish, it will be midnite.

+1 0020: Goodnite!

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Christmas Gathering 2006 (Family)


The first half of Christmas Day was spent resting at home as well as doing some swimming in the pool. The evening was another gathering, this time at Cousin Helen's place in Clementi.




Highlights of the evening include:

  1. Popiah Making Contest - Some were pretty good, others turned out more like super huge dumplings or wontons!

  2. Chocolate Eating Contest - Two boxes of Royce (Champagne and Cherry Marnier) with White Wine!

  3. Baby Contest - Guess who was the winner?

  4. Surprise "Guest"- Danny surprised us all by coming back from Australia without telling anyone except Dad (yeah, else he will have to stay in a hotel) ... and Dad was pretty good at keeping a secret!

Click on Image above for more Photos.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Pre-Christmas Gathering 2006 (Friends)

The day started pretty early. Had lunch with Wifey and Mei2 at the usual Teochew Porridge place at Bukit Timah. After that, we went to Cold Storage to shop for stuff to cook for the gathering. We decided on Fried Rice and oven grilling finger food. Eventually, guess who had to cook the fried rice!

Click on the image below to see the all the photos!
Group Photo

Wifey with a future Korean Drama star!
Wifey with Future King of Korean Dramas!!

Official Sony Baby?!

Nikki is back! This time she is on the cover of the latest issue of i-Weekly magazine! Well, not front cover but back cover, and on a Sony advert. This girl's got potential, she's making money even before her first birthday!

Nikki on i-Weekly

Friday, December 22, 2006

Friday before Christmas Weekend

The office started clearing out at 6pm. People were wishing one another Merry Christmas before going off for the long Christmas weekend break.

Anyway, had to stay slightly later cos Wifey was having "massage". Eventually, I was one of the last few to leave. Didn't do any partying. Had a simple dinner at Outram Park before deciding to drive through Orchard Road to look at the lights.

(Click on the Image to the right to see Photos taken from inside the car)

The lights weren't fantastic, coupled with the fact that it was raining, well, it was kinda disappointing. Anyway, looking forward to the coming two weekends for lots of feasting and gatherings. Must make sure I don't gain back the weight which took me a while to lose ...

99% Bitter ...


Of all the office Christmas gifts received, one of the more interesting ones was from Cel, which is a 99% Bitter Chocolate Bar. Apparently Cactus likes it but I am still trying to figure out how to eat it without leaving too much of a bitter taste in the mouth.

So far, the only success I have is to mix it with Milo and Cereal, and the result is not too bad!


With this post I would like to wish all Friends and Family (who somehow can find the time to read this blog) a very Merry Christmas!

May all find true joy, peace and happiness during this season and in the coming New Year!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

mmm........mocha....


mmm........mocha....
Originally uploaded by snapsforgeisha.
Where can I get such YUMMY looking mocha in Singapore?!

Canon Ixus 850 IS

After using it for almost a week or so and comparing it with my current Ricoh R3, general feedback is:

  1. Macro shots cannot beat the Ricoh in terms of super closeup and macro flash capability. Ivan from RecentRunes have the same comments.
  2. General non-macro shots are better than the Ricoh in terms of noise reduction.
  3. Because of the AF assist lamp and more powerful flash, low light general photography is better with the Canon. However, that said, the latest Ricoh R5 comes with AF assist so it may be as good as the Canon.
  4. The Canon flash seems to produce a yellowish tinge for closeup and macro photos.

BTW, Ricoh Singapore has 3 year warranty on the R3 while Canon only has 1 year + 3 months (if you register online)

I am expecting the Canon to perform better at taking people with its face detection technology and all. Will be using it over the next 2 weeks during the Christmas and New Year gatherings to see how it performs.

More sample shots from the Canon Ixus 850 IS.

Magnetics Unmasked Pedicure Tools The Orient Remotely Pork Chops Bangkit Road - Char Siew and Roast Pork Rice My Phone Lilo & Stitch! Dining / Living Room Masks Hallway Clock in the Hallway $2 Fishball Noodles ... so much chilli oil! Beef

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Saturday ... "Thanksgiving"

Dunno why but woke up early today and decided to get out of bed instead of the usual "snooze". Today was the visit to the "temple" to give thanks for a peaceful 2006.

Anyway, left the house pretty early, I didn't expect it would turn out to be such a long day!

Lunch is almost always with in-laws on Saturday afternoon. Took the chance to do more test shots with the new Canon IXUS 850 IS.

Island Creamery Pulut Hitam Ice Cream Greenery Plastic Manicure MIL Tanglin Halt Corridor

After lunch, it was straight to Waterloo Street. Today must have been an auspicious day cos there was lots of people there. Didn't manage to take any photos though.

Anyway, we did not go to a temple, but instead to a shop near the temple where you can "outsource" your prayers! Basically, its run like a clinic:

  1. Queue for consultancy.
  2. Consult the expert on what "services" you need.
    (or is recommended based on your Chinese zodiac for this year)
  3. Pay for recommended service.
  4. Go into prayer room and wait for your turn.
    (prayer room is noisy, hot and smoky from all the praying and incense)
  5. Once your turn, tell your personal details to the "pray-er" (a person) and she will do all the "talking".
  6. Once finish, put any additional donations into tin, wash hands, leave.

And you also get to keep the mandarin oranges that were used as offerings ... so convenient!

IQ Test


Was fooling around with the new digicam.
Try to read the red text in the picture to determine your IQ.

Friday, December 15, 2006

The Gym

Wifey bet 10 bucks that I would not be able to wake up and go to the gym this morning. Well, I'm just back from the gym after a refreshing workout. It's been really a while since I've been to my home gym, almost 2 years in fact since the accident. Had the whole gym to myself as most normal people should be on the way to work by now :-)

Anyway, time to collect my $$$ ...

Sunday, December 10, 2006

C3 Videos

There's going to be a major milestone in one of my projects next week, so I am trying to take whatever opportunity I can to relax before the 3 days of presentation & review with the customer.

Anyway, in between chores today, I was fooling around on YouTube searching for videos of the C3. Managed to find some cool and funny ones:

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Wireless@SG

Wifey is having facial so it is waiting time again. Armed with newspapers and a wireless PDA, I set off to CentrePoint McDonalds for the one hour wait while wifey has her beauty treatment. (ok, I admit, so I didnt really bring the newpapers cos I didnt want to look like an uncle ok...)

Anyway, now I am in front of McCafe having a mango smoothie. There is some sort of manager here briefing the Mac staff. Lots of ppl here on a Sat morning but unfortunately too early for any chiobus. Most are casually dressed family, tourists or students.

Being the kiasu Singaporean, I have signed up for all 3 of the free Wireless Surfing accounts available in Singapore (SingNet, Qmax & iCell). Now I am logged on thru QMax. The wireless signal doesnt seem to be very strong but still usable. Anyway, since it is free, I have no complaints!

Wifey should be calling anytime soon, think Ill go Robinsons and take a look around.

------------------- Update: 9 Dec 2006, 9:30 pm --------------------

Robinsons is having a storewide 20% sale, and there is an additional 20% off for Robinsons card holders. End up buying 3 pairs of pants! :-D

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Murphy's Law

Yesterday was fine until the end of the day when Murphy decided to show up, and he showed up at the worst time possible!

I was at a customer's premises on Pulau Brani, quite an inaccessible place without a vehicle. Lo and behold, just after parking the car, the first symptoms showed up. The car cannot be locked with the remote key. After fiddling around for a while, tried starting the car and the car refused to start as well! @#$%!

Managed to somehow lock all the doors manually and went for the meeting (late of course). The meeting was pretty short and in a while I was back at the car again. Finally, decided to call it a day and come back the next day with a spare key. I suspect the car is not able to recognise/detect the current key that I have, meaning I cannot remotely lock/unlock the doors and also the immobiliser is active.

On the way home, Daniel Powter's "Bad Day" was playing in my head almost through the whole journey on the train.

Today I am going back with the spare key and pray that it works. If not, the plan will be to get security clearance for a tow truck. Freaking Super Sianz!

------------------- Update: 7 Dec 2006 8:21 pm --------------------

The spare key didn't work and it was a mini project by itself trying to rescue Bubbles off the island.

Bubbles is now resting in the hospital at Leng Kee. Hopefully she will get well enough to go home tomorrow ...

------------------- Update: 8 Dec 2006 4:26 pm --------------------

Bubbles had to be brainwashed at the hospital to regain her sanity. She is now safely back with me at the office, will take her for a nice dinner and bath later on.

16 Personality Factors

Found a survey on a site which has a FREE online assessment based Cattell's 16 Personality Factors. The following are my results:

Cattell 16 Factor Test Results
Warmth||||||||||||||||||||||||74%
Intellect|||||||||||||||||||||70%
Emotional Stability||||||||||||||||||54%
Liveliness||||||||||||||||||58%
Dutifulness||||||||||||||||||||||||78%
Social Assertiveness||||||||||||||||||58%
Sensitivity|||||||||||||||||||||62%
Paranoia||||||||||||||||||54%
Introversion||||||||||||||||||||||||||||90%
Openmindedness|||||||||||||||||||||62%
Independence||||||||||||||||||||||||||||86%
Perfectionism||||||||||||||||||||||||78%
Tension|||||||||30%
Aggressiveness|||||||||||||||||||||62%
Abstractness||||||||||||||||||58%
Anxiety||||||||||||||||||58%


You can also take the test HERE.

I think in general the scores are pretty well distributed except for 2 particularly high and one low score. They are tension (low), introversion (high) and independence (high).

The scores probably explains why everyone I know seems to think I am a "cool man", and also why instead of having many friends, I prefer to have only a few close ones.

I am also getting wifey to do it too!

-----------------------------------------------------

Wifey's Results are here:

Warmth ||||||||||||||||||||| 62%
Intellect |||||||||||||||||||||||| 74%
Emotional Stability ||||||||||||||| 50%
Aggressiveness ||||||||||||||| 42%
Liveliness ||||||||||||||| 46%
Dutifulness |||||||||||||||||| 58%
Social Assertiveness |||||||||||||||||| 58%
Sensitivity ||||||||||||||||||||| 70%
Paranoia |||||||||||| 38%
Abstractness ||||||||||||||| 50%
Introversion ||||||||||||||| 46%
Anxiety |||||||||||||||||| 54%
Openmindedness |||||||||||| 38%
Independence ||||||||||||||| 42%
Perfectionism |||||||||||||||||| 58%
Tension ||||||||||||||| 50%

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Paris second time round

Wifey just came back today after a cold week in Paris for some work, which means I had to take care of most of the household chores last week. Managed to complete all of them by the final milestone today :-)

To see what Paris is like at this time of year, click HERE.

And apparently she was brave enough (i.e. conned) into trying the French andouillette sausage. (Which apparently has a disgusting faecal like aroma!)


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Of all the stuff you see in the picture, she only managed to finish the potato...

Dominic's Birthday


Took some photos from Dominic's birthday dinner last Saturday (25th November) at Jumbo Seafood but didn't have time to post them online. Dinner was ok but was spoilt by the fact that they forgot our order for the Pepper Crab despite REPEATEDLY being REMINDED at least 5-6 times over a period of nearly an hour!

Have added the photos to Nikki's folder. Happy 33rd Birthday Dom, er, I mean Dominic! :-P

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Love Story in Harvard Part 2

This time, it was in Carlton Hotel. Small, simple, cosy affair with only 18 tables.

The bride looked different from the other bride last Friday in Sentosa. Friday's bride looked more China Chinese than Korean. Today's bride looks more like someone you will find in a K-Drama. Prettier.

Instead of waltzing into the ballroom in an evening gown after the fourth dish, both of them came down in traditional Korean wear. They also did the "bow of respect" to their parents. (If you watch enough K-Drama, u will know what I mean)

Was mustered up as one of the Yum Seng gang but too bad the effort was rather weak :-)

Anyway, congratulations to Kenny and Hee-Young!

Monday, November 27, 2006

A Little Bit More

Something which I have heard for many years now but never bothered to find out who the original artist was. This time, I did a little research and paid attention to the lyrics ...

Dr. Hook
A Little Bit More
When your body's had enough of me
And I'm layin' flat out on the floor
When you think I've loved you all I can
I'm gonna love you a little bit more

Come on over here and lay by my side
I've got to be touchin' you
Let me rub your tired shoulders
The way I used to do
Look into my eyes and give me that smile
The one that always turns me on
And let me take your hair down
Cause we're stayin' up to greet the sun...

And when your body's had enough of me
And I'm layin' flat out on the floor
When you think I've loved you all I can
I'm gonna love you a little bit more

Got to say a few things that have been on my mind
And you know where my mind has been
I guess I learned my lessons
And now's the time to begin
So if you're feelin' alright and you're ready for me
I know that I'm ready for you
We better get it on now
Cause we got a whole life to live through...

And when your body's had enough of me
And I'm layin' flat on the floor
When you think I've loved you all I can
I'm gonna love you a little bit more

And when your body's had enough of me
And I'm layin' flat out on the floor...

Call me a dinosaur but this is one great song way back from 1976. If you have no idea what I am talking about, check out the Doc's video. There was also a remake in the 90s from the boyband 911.

Time for some new songs in the car ... :-D

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Love Story in Harvard, er, I mean ... Sentosa

Picture this:

Singaporean guy, Korean girl, tying the knot @ a lovely candle-lit wedding on the lawn by Siloso Beach at Rasa Sentosa.

The guy is my cousin-in-law (is there such a relation?). Sounds romantic? Yes, well, it could have been.

There were a hundred or more guests at the beachside dinner buffet. Unfortunately, there were quite a few older folk who were invited too, and Siloso Beach was not exactly the most accessible dinner venue. There was quite a walk from the hotel lobby to the beachside, and the shuttle buses from the mainland weren't exactly very elderly friendly. Mumbled complaints aplenty.

The setting at the beachside dinner was almost perfect. However, I think they forgot to put lights on the table where the food were placed. As a result, many were seen peering at the smoked salmon, trying to figure out what that dark mass was. Most of the time, I can't really confirm what kind of food was on my plate until it went into my mouth.

As for the food, well, I've tasted better. I give it 2.5 out of 5 stars.

All in all, it was a pretty unique experience. Kudos to the 3-piece live "band" who not only had to play throughout the dinner, but who also had to also compete with the din coming from the nearby OCBC beach party event about 50 metres away.

Oh yes, the dinner also came with a complimentary 10 minute workout before and after the meal. I probably burnt off a couple of calories walking up and down a steep slope to the nearest car parking area.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Dad's Trip Down Under #3

Continued from Dad's Trip Down Under #2

Just picked up Dad from the airport and sent him home. It seems that he has thoroughly enjoyed his 1 + 1 week of stay in Melbourne with Danny. Glad we made the decision to put him on this trip. He claims he did quite a bit of shopping at the flea markets there, so will check out his "loot" when we meet this weekend.

Monday, November 20, 2006

To Cel ...

Congrats Cel on your wedding! Great dinner event, nice food, lovely bride! Cheers!
Not only did you gain a hubby, but you also found a long lost uncle/boss ... haha!

Friday, November 17, 2006

Wardrobe Update

This month alone there are 4 weddings to attend. Furthermore, GST is going to be raised to 7% soon, so its a good time to do a mini wardrobe update to maximise the returns!

Weekdays are always good for shopping, especially in the men's section. Prompt service, and no queues at the fitting room. Only thing is the carpark is more expensive than usual. Anyway, went to do a little shopping with wifey on Tues after we got back the car (apparently they couldn't find anything wrong with it apart from the back seat which had fallen off and they managed to fix back).

Anyway, checked out some "branded" stuff. I never knew men's shirts could be so expensive. The following are some of the average prices per shirt which we found:

Country Road: ~S$190
Calvin Klein: ~S$300
fcuk: ~S$120
Hugo Boss: (forgot to check but expect to be similar to Country Road or more)

Finally decided on getting one from Zara. Its cheaper than all of the brands above but quality / cutting seems better (i.e. value for $$). So now, my wardrobe is a collection of mixed stuff, ranging from the el-cheapo $10 stuff to the most expensive one to date (Zara). Looking forward to more wardrobe updates in the near future!

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Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Early Morning @ Tiong Bahru

Ok, this entry will probably cost me a buck or two but I don't care cos I'm BORED.

Its just before 10am here at the BK in Tiong Bahru Plaza. Just dropped off the car so I have about 3 hours to kill before meeting wifey for lunch.

Just came down from the 4th floor cineplex. totally dark & deserted. Currently having a really slow drink. There's a few early birds here mostly in T-shirts and shorts. A couple of office wearers with laptops too. Probably insurance ppl.

There is also a lady here with a super short crewcut hairstyle (like a BMT recruit) reading a book with "Emotional Rollercoaster" in its title. I wonder what's her story.

A young couple (prob still schooling) just arrived not too long ago. The girl is now tutoring the guy in some subject, probably Math. Aww, so romantic :-p

I still can't decide if I should go to the library (was advised that it probably opens only at 1100) or somewhere else for window shopping.

Sigh, after all this tapping, only about 40 mins have passed. Think I shall start walking towards the library now. By the time I reach there they should be opening... as I'm leaving, crewcut lady is still reading her book and the young couple is still immersed in their notes. :-)

Monday, November 13, 2006

Therapeutic Drive

Wifey has a dinner appointment tonite. So on the way back, decided to take it easy and enjoy the drive.

Usually on a normal day it would be right lane all the way at full (but legal) speed. However, today I was at the leftmost lane doing 60km/h throughout the entire expressway part of the journey. Reaching Mandai, the top opened, windows came down and the volume went up! The cool evening breeze after a heavy afternoon downpour + loud music was simply fantastic. Sorry, no apologies for being a roadhog today! :-D

By the time I reached home and pulled into the basement carpark, Chris DeBurgh's "Lady in Red" was at full blast. It must have been pretty loud cos a number of residents were looking at me as I drove past.

Must do this again sometime soon!

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Dad's Trip Down Under #2

continued from "Dad's Trip Down Under".

Surprise surprise, Dad wants to extend his trip! Considering the fact that he was so insistent that he didn't want to go at all 2 weeks ago! Anyway, we are all glad that he is enjoying himself with Danny. Have told Danny to take more photos to share.

I wonder how we ourselves will turn out after we hit 60. Will we be stubborn, mild, bitter, fierce, senile or still remain young at heart and keep up with the times? Will we still be able to remember old friends and make new ones? Although we can make a conscious effort but I guess only time will tell.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Flowers and French Food

Bought a hand bouquet for wifey for our Special Anniversary (yesterday). After that we had dinner at Vis-a-vis. We were the only ones in the restaurant for the first half hour and so the only waiter around became our personal butler. Service is good (10% service charge + 1% cess) and the food was nice but a tad expensive. Reminds me once again why we somehow can never appreciate fine dining.

Our Special Anniversary this year marks our 14th year together as a couple. We usually don't have any elaborate celebrations but its always good to have a "simple something" to remember. Anyway, here's to many more Anniversaries to come!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

3COL

Updated this Blog and optimised the display for screen resolution of 1024 x 768 using 3 columns. Simply put, it means I will have more space at the side to put other cool stuff!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Blepharospasm

Have you ever had this irritating eyelid twitching thingy happen to you? Well, it happened to me (my right eye). And it happened for the whole day! It also didn't help that I had to sit through a super long meeting lasting almost 5 hours with lunch in between.

Blepharospasm - literally meaning "eyelid twitch", but also defined as "spasmodic winking". What the heck is "spasmodic winking"??? Sounds like a term used solely for serious case CKPs or DOMs...

Luckily the solution is simple, less stress and more sleep. I need more of those. Another blogger calls it "myokymia", translated literally as "eye tremors". There are also some old wives tales which try to give meaning to the twitch. Found one such site HERE. Check out what a right eye twitch could mean. :-P

BTW, it is still twitching away as I am typing this entry. Feel like giving myself a black eye now. Hope it goes away by tomorrow.

Glossary:
CKP - Chee Ko Pek
DOM - Dirty Old Man/Men

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Japanese Curry Noodles

Was looking at the leftover half pack of Japanese Vermont Curry and thinking of what to do with it when suddenly, inspiration struck. Hong Kong wanton noodles with Japanese Curry = slurrrp!

Reduced carbo by just using carrots only without potatoes. The "HK Noodles" were from NTUC. The end result is what you see on the right. Delicious meal for two!

Internet Explorer 7

Microsoft Internet Explorer 7 is out. Download through Windows Update. New support for Tabbed Browsing and other cool stuff are available.

Used it to update this blog's layout and also to add feeds and stuff, so far its been reasonably stable.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Submission

Its finally over, the tender preparation completed at approximately 1000hrs, a good 2 hours before submission. Now I am back at the hotel room (again) resting and getting ready for the flight back for the wedding dinner.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Back at the same Hotel ...

Past midnight, sitting in the same looking hotel room in front of my laptop ... darn, these surroundings are getting more and more familiar with each passing day, not good.

Tomorrow will be another full day of work before the Tender closes on Friday. Lets hope that there are no stupid last minute surprises tomorrow so we can at least catch a few hours of sleep at night.

Friday is RTU and also a colleague's wedding dinner which I've promised to be there. As of now I am confirmed on the 1600 flight which will put me at the wedding banquet (luggage and all) at about 2045. My waitlist for the 1330 flight is still yet to be confirmed, although one of my "Gold Card" colleagues has already confirmed his. Wish me luck!

Ok, think I'll turn on WinAmp and tune it to the Internet KPop music channel while I sleep tonight. The wonders of free broadband! ZZZZzzzzzz...

Monday, October 30, 2006

Dad's Trip to Down Under

Other than his honeymoon with Mum to Hong Kong way back sometime in the late 1960s, my Dad has not gone for an overseas trip (Malaysia not included) to anywhere else. So I thought it would be easy to convince him to go for a trip since he very much deserved it after all these years. Well, not what I had expected ...

I had accumulated miles on my frequent flyer account and they are going to expire end of the year. Was initially thinking of sending him to visit my cousin in the UK but now is not a good time (i.e. Winter). So decided to get him on a trip to Melbourne to visit my youngest brother, Danny.

It actually took a few phone calls + lunch + lots of saliva before he was finally convinced. Basically he did not want to go as he didn't want to impose on Danny and was afraid that he would be "neglected" once he was there. But as things turned out, Danny was currently in between jobs and welcomed the visit. I told him to plan the itinerary + provide the accomodation while I settled the travel arrangements.

I only just finished redeeming the ticket and applying the Australian "visa" (a.k.a. ETA). Now our job is to make sure he knows how to get on/off the plane next week!

New Blogger Template

Yes, this is a new Blogger template that I am using, and it looks exactly the same as the old one! After trying several designs, I still like the clean and simple look of Minima.

blogger_collage

There are plenty of new templates created for Blogger Beta on the Net. This example shows how to modify a template to create 2 sidebars (i.e. 3 columns).

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Blogger Beta

Just mustered enough courage to make the "plunge" to Blogger Beta. What's the worst that could happen ... lose my entire blog?!

Anyway, it took about 2 minutes for Blogger to migrate all the pages to Blogger Beta and it sent me an email notification when it was done. I think the Blogger Beta servers are not highly utilised as the access speed after migration was much faster.

The only major changes that I've seen so far is the change in the login parameters, change of user interface and the ability to add labels to your posts. Also, posting is much faster as it does not need to keep on refreshing the web page to tell you how much it has published.

When there is time, I will also play around with the new Templates. Cross my fingers and hope this new Beta remains stable!

Organic Apple Cider Vinegar

My wifey's friend had just given birth not long ago. The last visit we had to her place she was telling us the weight loss benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV). Next thing we knew, we had bought a bottle of Organic ACV to try out. The bottle we bought is from the Organic section in NTUC. Cost is around S$10. The recommended serving is 1-2 tsp mixed in a glass of water before every meal (i.e. 3 times per day). For those who cannot take the smell/taste of vinegar, this concoction may not be for you! Food_

Anyway, hope it works for me. A quick search on Google for ACV revealed that it was not just for weight loss but is beneficial in other ways too.

一度赞 Instant Noodles

Wifey and her colleages has just shipped a huge stock of instant noodles back from ROC (several cartons of the stuff apparently!). Apparently, this brand is a hot favourite among our soldiers who go up there for training.

We tried one yesterday morning for breakfast and it brought back memories over ten years ago. At that time I was in ROC and we sneaked out of the camp to the provision shop across the road and had instant noodles! The noodles were the same, springy and it came with a super spicy soup (great on a cold ROC morning!) and authentic tasting chunks of stewed beef. Oh yes, and the shop assistant was real "chio" too!

Bon Appetite! Food_

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Afternote: As with all "instant" stuff, try to eat only as occasional snack!

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Pre-dawn in Hong Kong

It is now 1:15am in Hong Kong. Fell asleep while watching TV earlier. Looked at my laptop and saw a few missed messages on Skype from colleagues at around 10pm+. Shucks, will probably be called a pig again on Monday. General_

Anyway, out the window is a pretty quiet HK as opposed to the scene in the morning. Directly opposite is a block of flats. Judging by the number of lights still on, there are slightly more people awake here than back home on a Saturday morning.

The streets are quiet. The silence is only broken occasionally when taxis and the mini-buses pass by. Hmm, I didn't know those buses operated 24 hours, guess there is still business and money to be made at this hour.

Managed to change my flight from 1830 to 1330. Saved about 5 hours so won't be hanging around here tomorrow. Flight is not too early so at least can enjoy the complimentary buffet breakfast tomorrow instead of rushing through it every day.

Better catch some more sleep now else can't catch any movies on the plane later. Kooshking, signing off.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

VivoCity ...

It was after work and wifey was in Suntec, so we decided to drop by VivoCity for a look last night. The place wasn't officially open till 1 Dec 2006, but already almost every other person has been there. As it was a mid-weekday evening, we thought there shouldn't be much people ... unfortunately that was not the case! General_

After spending about 2 hours there the following is my comments:

The Bad
1. Shops somehow don't seem to be organised logically; i.e. food, fashion, etc. seem to be mixed up
2. Large open spaces, although suppose to make one feel more relaxed, does not help if you are shopping. You actually have to walk further going from shop to shop.
3. The crowd. I guess the crowd should thin out a few months after the official opening, but now its pretty crowded. Even though it was a week night, we couldn't get a spot in Food Republic and the queues at the popular eateries were super long.


The Good
1. I like the "SkyGarden". It is a good place to sit down in the evening, relax, chat and enjoy the scenery and breeze.


Anyway, it was still an interesting evening. In fact, we actually met quite a few people we knew during that short space of 2 hours (one of my friends, an NUS classmate and a relative). Which brings me now to the more interesting part ... ;-)

The relative which we met is my wifey's uncle, who is usually very friendly. So yesterday we spotted him with a young lady which we initially thought was our cousin (i.e. his daughter). Went we went up to him to say hi, he was quite shocked to see us. He muttered a quick "Oh, Hi!" and quickly scurried away into the crowd. It was then that we realised that the young lady was not our cousin! Wifey and I were both caught by surprise. Who was that lady and why did he have to behave so suspiciously? Hmmm ...

BTW, Cactus if you are reading this, I already know what you are going to say!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Back in Hong Kong

It's last minute and before I could even post an entry on this blog, I am here. Here, yes, back in Hong Kong again.

Now, it is 11pm and finally some rest after a day of travelling and technical discussions. With cable TV in the background, broadband internet and the company of this blog, this is a good time for some personal reflection.

I had received several SMS, emails and Skype messages today from friends and family. Although they were not particularly urgent or important messages, it felt really good to receive them. Its little things like these that keep you going. I can't imagine spending a few days here without any communications back home, would probably go insane.

Anyway, tomorrow will be more work and hopefully return flights on Saturday will not be fully booked. Would really like to enjoy whatever's left of the weekend back home.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Bed Bug Bites!

Auggh!! They must have got me when I was carrying the King sized mattress to the lift and then downstairs to the disposal area. I wonder if they lay eggs under your skin and then when they hatch they crawl out through your eyes and ears .... eeeekks!! General_
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Sunday, October 08, 2006

Expensive Sausages

Yesterday was the day where I have spent the most on a pack of sausages. I was standing around the freezer in Cold Storage for at least 5 minutes and my curiousity got the better of me. I spent S$12.90 for a pack of 7 sausages.

Anyway, they were pre-grilled and were supposed to taste like they came out of a barbeque after sticking them into the microwave for about a minute. Well, I tried 2 of them today and they were not bad, although they tasted no where near anything that came freshly out of a barbeque ...

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