Travel

Till a week later

Goodbye everyone!
I’ll be boarding a plane in an hour’s time as I embark on my journey to Cambodia.
How cool is that?!
I’m so excited, the fact that I am still in office rushing to finish some work now (yes now, at this very moment) is not dampening my spirits.

Anyway, check back here for sporadic updates and if you are really bored, hop right to my photos page (right nav bar) cos it’s finally up!

Happy Diwali/Hari Raya in advance!

Cheerios,
yAnn

The organised chaos

Lazy Sunday at The French Stall

I have been wanting to check out The French Stall for the longest time but never really had the opportunity to. Jimm and I were supposed to (finally) dine at the low budget French eatery yesterday but were dragged by friends to Chomp Chomp to feast on sambal stingray, chwee kueh, char kway teow, pizza and prawn noodles, washed down by sugar cane juice and egg beancurd. But that’s another story.

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It was probably a good thing that we went today instead because the place was relatively quiet when we arrived at about 6.40pm. There were empty tables and the staff were attentive and helpful. Half the customers were probably Caucasian while the rest were locals.

I decided to go for the three-course set, which started at $13.80, depending on which starter or dessert you chose. We started off with half a dozen of escargots, garlic bread and pumpkin soup. The escargots were delightfully succulent and not rubbery as some rubbish restaurants would have you eat. Garlic bread was fragrant though the bread was not as toasted as we had preferred. Pumpkin soup was light and tasty. Just in time for halloween.

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I picked the Pan-friend chicken leg (cannot remember exact name lah) as my main course, which was rather delicious though nothing to shout about. The tomato-based gravy was nice and flavourful, with just a hint of sweetness. The scoop of rice went quite nicely with the gravy and reminded me a little of nasi briyani, actually.

Jimm was cleverer, he picked an ala carte item off the “special” list – grilled chicken. It was ABFAB DELICIOUS! The chicken was so full of flavour, nice and juicy. The tastes just burst in your mouth. The potato slices were crispy but not too dry and really yummy. I was rather jealous.

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After the meal, my dessert came. It was aptly called the “giant profiterole with a scoop of vanilla ice-cream and drizzled chocolate sauce”. It was truly a giant profiterole! The vanilla ice-cream was capped by the profiterole and was smooth and fragrant. I’m usually not a fan of vanilla but I was won over by this. They were generous with both the serving of chocolate sauce and ice-cream and it was heavenly! We slurped up every morsel, every drip of chocolate.

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The meal came up to about $54 for the both of us but we figured that it was well worth it, considering the quality of the food and service. Everything fitted into our tummies neatly, nobody was suffering from over-eating (as I did the day before from the stuffing) and the servings were just filling. It’s a “must go again” place.

After dinner, we headed down to Suntec City because I was hoping to catch the Sportslink sale to grab a pair of running shoes. Instead of picking up shoes, Jimm picked out a neat green velour Nike jacket from the racks and urged me to try it. I did, fell in love and then fell out of love decidedly after seeing the price tag. As we walked out of the hall, the silly man kept teasing me, “Sure you don’t want it? It looked nice on you and probably costs more outside. How? I’ll pay for it lah.” Blasted.

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In the end we walked back in and bought the jacket. I got the cashier to snip off the tags and wore it there and then to hide the ah lian outftt I had on (tank top and denim mini skirt, what was I thinking?!).

It’s rather nice to have a boyfriend who doesn’t see shopping as a chore and instead, enjoys picking out things for me to try on. Usually, the stuff he picks out are clothes that I would never really imagine myself wearing but inevitably, they would look nice on me. He’s cool about waiting for me to try on clothes, gives honest opinions and doesn’t ask silly questions like “why do you need another pair of black heels?”. A very good man, indeed.

Tis a happy day indeed, especially since I have finished packing for my trip!
Okay the bed beckons.
Nite!

Little Miss Shopaholic

LMS: The lovely Tian

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Yoohoo, Little Miss Shopaholic is back!

Thrifty LMS (now, doesn’t that just sounds like an oxymoron) has been holding on very tightly to her wallet in preparation for her week-long holiday next week. But this doesn’t mean that she is averse to sharing with you her shopping experiences.

Today, she would like to introduce to all you lurvies out there a brand that she has come to appreciate: Tian.

Meaning “field” in Chinese, Tian is located at Parco Bugis Junction and the newly renovated Raffles Exchange (a most exciting place).

The first time LMS swooned over their clothes was a few moons back, when she happened to be at Bugis Junction. Her eagle eyes spotted this whimsical deconstructed denim skirt and she quickly zoomed over to pull out the lovely piece of art from the racks.

Imagine this: a knee-length flared denim skirt with panels of a lighter shade. LMS loves to twirl a few rounds in front of the mirror and see the skirt sway gently like the palm trees do when the sea breeze kisses them. How pretty!

But it was a hefty S$79.90 and frugal LMS decided that it was a total rip-off, not matter how beautifully it swings. Patience certainly pays off for, what do you know, the pretty skirt on sale recently! At merely $48, 40% off the original price, LMS could not resist and her wallet was whipped out in an instant, with no hesitation.

Today, she was drawn to the shop like a magnet for an elegant black top was just calling out her name. It’s a crinkle black shirt (no need to iron, how convenient!) with ruffles down the front and a small lace panel at the back. No tackiness, for LMS abhors tacky things. Tsk tsk.

LMS says, go check out the store! They have some really wicked stuff, although you may find some duds too.

Everything Else

Music 4 Mondays (13): The one about hanging on

The thing about Mondays is that they seldom go well.

You discover that a disgusting cockroach has made its grubby way into your room and hidden deviously in some corner right before you go to bed. You simply cannot go to sleep without destroying that hideous monster and so, you spend a good half hour hunting it down before poisoning it to death in a cloud of insecticide.

You go to bed late, wake up with a start at 8.15am, only to discover that you had set the alarm for 7pm.

You find that the stories you had uploaded on Friday had disappeared into cyber-space mysteriously, earning you a rebuke for being careless. You then spend an additional 15 minutes re-uploading them.

You receive an email from a PR contact, saying that an analyst who had agreed to answer your questions suddenly realised that he cannot do so afterall, when your story is due on Thursday.

You talk to friends over MSN, and more than one of them break the news to you that they had resumed their single lives over the weekend and your heart goes out to them.

You decide that it’s a bad Monday and you want to leave work at 6pm, only to realise that there was going to be a staff meeting at 5pm. You end up leaving at 7pm instead.

The sun has left and forgotten me
It’s dark, I cannot see
Why does this rain pour down
I’m gonna drown
In a sea
Of deep confusion….

Just hang on, hang on to the vine
Stay on, soon you’ll be divine
If you start to cry, look up to the sky
Something’s coming up ahead
To turn your tears to dew instead

In times like these, I just listen to Pink Martini‘s new album and my heart will lighten up like a delicious cream puff immediately.
Poof!

Hang on little tomato by Pink Martini (link removed)

[Let’s play tag! , , ]

Photography

SFW05: Pose

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Went for two fashion shows, which were part of the Singapore Fashion Week 2005, on Wednesday night at The Arts House. Saw a few luminaries including Hong Kong stripper singer, Alex To, who was standing just less than a metre away from me, and MediaCorp actress Lynn Poh sporting a hairdo that would make an Afro wilt in shame.

The first show was from the Posse label, which was held in the tiny room aptly known as the Play Den. The organizers clearly underestimated the size of the crowd, started the show 40 minutes late and left many people stranded with no way of squeezing into the room to catch the show. It was just awful.

Thank goodness for my friend Denise, who had the foresight to stand inconspicuously at the head of the queue, and who out-yelled some bossy auntie in order to grab us seats.

The second was from Indonesian label (X)S.M.L and held in the larger Chamber room, where parliament sessions used to take place. The collection was funkier, larger and pret-a-porter. Pity the designers did not take a bow at the end.

Other photos can be found here.

Everything Else, Health Goddess

Fatigued

I popped over to the gym during my lunch hour to give the good ‘ol heart a workout and also to up the distance of my running. Gack. It was an utter failure.

I could only manage a paltry 6.5km in 45 minutes of walking and running. How the heck am I going to finish the quarter marathon in Dec in a decent time? Sobs.

Think I need to start pounding on real ground soon. Running on treadmill is rather boring, I always have to find something to focus on to keep my eyes from drifting back to the control panel of the treadmill. Today, it was the wide back of a balding Caucasian man.

Some random thoughts while running:
Okay, that must have been at least two minutes. What?! It’s been only 30 seconds?

I’ll slow down at 4km. Okay, fug, am only at 1.9km.

Am I running faster or is she running faster?

Whoo hoo, another iPod user!

Is that dude swimming or just splashing around for the fun of it?

And now, I am sulking because by the time I had finished showering in that freezer masquerading as a shower cubicle, dry my hair and slap on some makeup to look presentable, it was already nearing the end of my lunch hour. So I rushed back to office WITHOUT LUNCH.

Good heavens. To NOT eat is already torturous enough, to ill-treat my stomach after a run is a sin.

Am now cruising along on the contents of a cup of hot Milo, one Milo energy bar and one Uncle Toby’s Strawberry Yoghurt Topps muesli bar. Very healthy. But so unsatisfying.

Milo: 17.6g carbohydrates, 3.3g protein
Milo bar: 29.5g carbohydrates, 3.0g protein
Muesli bar: 20.9g carbohydrates, 2.6g protein
Total: 68.0g carbohydrates (miserable), 8.9g protein

Wonder if that’s enough to replace the stuff that I had burnt up during the run. I need meat. Grrrr.

Update: Bought myself sandwiches. Yummy.

Everything Else

Music 4 Mondays (12): The one about angsty love

I remember watching this particular episode of Sex and the City where Carrie wonders out loud if there really is the One guy out there for everybody. And that if a relationship has failed, did it mean that the One had gotten away or just that he wasn’t really the One afterall?

I’ve always wondered about that myself. While the notion that the One exists out there is tempting, the practical side of me says that with a gazillion people in the world, there can never be the One. We either continue searching for the perfect guy for us, or we remain happy and contented with the One we have.

That’s not to say that we should set our standards low and be happy with any prick that comes along. I think there’s a balance to be had, where all your wants and needs are nicely met without extreme indulgence.

So do you just know it?

Maybe Carrie was right when she said, “Maybe the best any of us can do is not quit, play the hand we’ve been given and accessorize what we’ve got.”

Even the best fall down sometimes
Even the wrong words seem to rhyme
Out of the doubt that fills my mind
I somehow find
You and I collide

Collide by Howie Day

Friends, The organised chaos

The magic of everyday

They were walking on ahead of me, slowly and in no obvious hurry. The world, on the other hand, whirled around them, edging past them, flying to their destinations. I watched them walk, as I slowed my footsteps to a mere stroll to keep up with them.

Because I was intrigued and fascinated by them — two people who bear obvious ravages of time on their lined faces, whose stooped bodies show the deterioration of youth, who are still so enamored of each other judging by the tight clasps of their hands and the loving looks on their faces as they glance down at each other.

It never ceases to amaze me how people could still be so in love after so many years, still enjoy the intimacy of each other despite having outgrown the hot flushes of youth.

How do relationships withstand the trials of time, anyway? How do we keep on feeling the way we did when we realized that he or she is our partner for life? How do we always capture the frisson that we encountered when we first held hands, locked lips, wrapped our arms around each other?

It actually boils down to one little word: Effort.

Magic, unlike in the fantasy worlds of Harry Potter and Dragonlance, does not exist on its own. It needs to be recreated, over and over again, so that it never becomes stale. The initial chemistry may spark off something but it always requires that extra effort for two people to constantly keep it bubbling.

The best thing is, I do not have to look further than my surroundings to know that such magic exists. I look at Fur, whose significant other had surprised her on her birthday by flying back from Shanghai and miraculously decorating a hotel room with the works all in the space of one day. I look at the Popartgirl, whose Joker boyfriend had posed a mystery to her in the days leading to her birthday, which finally culminated in the fashionable gift of an iPod nano (4GB to boot).

It’s nice to know that romance isn’t dead.

Happy birthday dear tootch!
Have fun with your fashionable white electronics toy.

Geek Girl

Oh, and one more thing….

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After weeks of wild speculation, crazy rumours and exciting anticipation, Oct 12 has finally descended upon us! For the uninitiated, this is yet another day when Apple Computer will be unleashing its new, unknown product to the dedicated Apple fans who will probably lap it up with relish.

Due to be unveiled tonight, Singapore time, the product launch has been watched closely simply because of the one invite that Apple had cleverly sent out:
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Yes, just that one email blast bearing a picture of a red-curtained theatre and the words “One more thing” has generated a feverish buzz amongst Apple lovers all across the globe. For the uninitiated (again), “one more thing” is the pet phrase of Steve Jobs beforehe launches products that have been wildly hyped up weeks before. Sounds familiar?

Anyhow, I sure hope that it’s not something that will trump my iPod nano (which is still stuck somewhere in….Bangkok?), although Apple has stated that the iPod nano will not be the last iPod to be launched this year. Keep your eyes and ears peeled this holiday season!

Moving back home, Singapore will soon have another Apple centre! To be called iShop, the centre is set up by the local equivalent of Donald Trump, only in fashion and not real estate, Christina Ong. Ong is, of course, the head honcho of Club 21, the company that brings in uber chic fashion brands such as Calvin Klein, Song & Kelly 21 and Diesel, among others.

iShop will be located at Cathay Cineleisure and looks certain to be swanky, chic and kickass spacious. Exciting!

Question: does it mean that all my Apple accessories will now be at Club 21 prices too?