Fast Food Fest in SIN

16 Jul 2011 – Food Glorious Food!

Richard has been FB positing the most delicious seafood pix from HKG and got my salivary glands drooling like LokLok (Johnny’s Golden Retrieve in HKG). Since unable to taste all these until end of the year, might as well do a posting on food!

SIN Food Festival 2011 (15-24 Jul) officially opened yesterday. Guests of honour and a record turnout of 35,000, as compared with 30,000 on 2010’s opening day. Even as crazy as I am about food, will not deal with such a crowd! This year’s theme of Curry and Spices is a reflection to the multi-ethnicity of SIN cuisine and the evolution of local flavours with changes in society and culture.

Admission is FOC – guess what, it will be packed. SIN must be one of the best nations to sniff out for freebies!

Pix by Straits Time: Compiled By Priscilla GOI

Have a delicious weekend and bon appetit. Will disappear into the woods in the shade on this clear blue sky day to pick some wild raspberries and blueberries 🙂 🙂 🙂
The journey of a thousand pounds begins with a single burger – Chris O’Brien


15 Jul 2011 – Kolsås Top

The last time@the top of Kolsås (342m) was in 1984 with blurred memories. A luxury to be able to do a peaceful and solo hike yesterday. The convenience of being able to walk 3 mins from the house to the trail makes it easier to just take off when the weather permits.

Kolsås is a wooded mountain ridge in the municipality of Bærum. Geologically, Kolsås belongs to the Oslo Graben area. Its two peaks consist of hard rhomb porphyric lava covering softer rocks, forming steep cliffs to the east, south and west. The area from Kolsås to Dælivannet is a protected landscape area from 1978 (5 sqkm/5,000 acres) with 4 nature reserves. The area has abundant plant life.

Started the morning hike from the house, the trails (not the main trail) are well trodden on but ended on the first top – the lower one and it was not my intentions to be there. To get to the other top, had to find the path to cross another ridge to get there.

Got slightly diverted but on such a lovely day, with mobile on-hand and wild blueberries to snack on, no worries. These again are the size of my little finger nail, they are really blue inside and stains but yummy! Did not meet a single soul, but mozzies are in the air and the patches helped. Norwegian mozzies are big but are rather slow; the stains on the hand is not blood but blueberry!

Found the blue trail (after a few trials & errors!) which leads to the higher and official top with the tower. There were just a handful of people here. Lovely day and place to lunch, a delicious chicken salad made early in the morning to take along. Lunch with a view! Could even spot my house’s roof from certain angles. Hiked down the official trail/blue trail. Appreciations to Kris for having me over for dinner after a day’s hike!

Not being online the first week threw me completely off Jul special dates:

4 Jul – Very Belated Happy 4th to all my American family & friends

14 Jul – Happy Bastille Day & Happy Bday Keith WESTMACOTT – a recent location of a long-lost Dublin friend!

15 Jul – Happy Bday John BREDENKAMP/also known as Gadget on the AT

16 Jul – Happy Bdays Winnie LAM 

17 Jul – Happy Bdays Nancy McGEE-BOWMAN & CH CHENG

19 Jul – Happy 14th Wedding Anniversary Linn & Jeff HALL

20 Jul – Happy Bday David YEOH

21 Jul – Happy Bday Albert CHUA

22 Jul – Happy Bday Mette BACKER and
Happy 12th Wedding Anniversary Dika LAM & Mark BOROWSKY

23 Jul – Happy Bday Lucas YEOH

25 Jul – Happy Bday Winnie LEE

And also a new Bday sometime this month for grandchild #5!

My father considered a walk among the mountains as the equivalent of churchgoing – Aldous Huxley

Forest Adventure

13 Jul 2011 – Man-Made Adventure with Safety-Strings Attached!

Thanks to CH for this adventure posting in FB. To answer my question for previous posting, there is LIFE in SIN. This really looks an exciting and fun thing to do. What a wonderful idea to be hoisted above ground, especially in the tropics where hiking is not that tempting due to the heat and humidity. Also hopefully to avoid the inserts and snakes!

Forest Adventure is an aerial course built through the trees comprising ladders, bridges, swings, nets, trapeze and giant zip lines!…

Equipped with a harness and a helmet and attached to a safety line, participants get to swing from tree to tree and zip across the Bedok Reservoir. Be ready for a real adrenaline rush with  4 giant zip lines – including the longest at 200 metres.
Must find out more about it when back in SIN. An excuse to arrange an outing with grand-nieces and grand-nephews! Must be at least 1.4m in height and weigh not more than 150kgs. Hmmm… wonder if there is a senior discount, LOL. But it says – Be ready for a real adrenaline rush! Might get a heart attack in the middle of it!! Now that my loose ends are more or less tied! ie will and red-tape paper works have been taken care of, so no worries 🙂

Photo Gallery (10)
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Have a great Bday bash there CH and do tell all about it after the experience. Will he be in his kilt???

I like all the adventure sports but I like to do them in a safe way – Catherine Bell

Digital Consumers

11 Jul 2011 – Does this also mean that SIN do not have a LIFE…???

Amazing that 2 months have passed and having my fair share online when there is an accessible line and when not painting! In a situation without a car and with public transport costing a bomb, the internet is an inexpensive way of communication. Prepared and aware of the situation that this summer will be a summer of house cleaning, painting etc, ie nothing too exciting to share. The weather has so far been perfect for that and will take off days (according to weather and moods!!) to enjoy human company and nature walks.

The pix below is your minimum digital consumers! L&J in Jun 2009, just before the birth of #4, Sophie. With 4 children soon, they do have a life and a busy one 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

SIN had the highest level of Internet penetration across the SEA region, according to a survey conducted by Nielsen. SIN are highest digital consumers in SEA – Carmelita Miki Kwek.
SINGAPOREANS just can’t seem to get enough of digital devices and the Internet, according to a report released by Nielsen on Monday.

The report is a pre-release of data from the research company’s inaugural South-east Asia Digital Consumer Report.

85% of digital consumers in Singapore own an Internet-capable mobile phone 
23% of Singaporean Internet users have a tablet computer in their home 
Social media platforms are growing in popularity and 85% of Singaporeans report accessing social media sites, many to connect or engage with brands and companies (69%).

The research company also found that Singapore has the highest level of Internet penetration across South-East Asia (SEA).

Two thirds of Singapore’s population aged 15+ (67%) now use the Internet, 29 points higher than the SEA regional average of 38%.

‘While Singaporeans still largely access the Internet via PCs, the growing popularity of connected devices such as the iPhone and iPad and increasing availability of cheaper mobile Internet price plans is paving the way for growth in mobile and tablet Internet usage in the future,’ said Rebecca Tan, Managing Director at Nielsen.

Imagine Being Here Now!

10 Jul 2011 – Fantasy Island

Bærums Værthuset***** is the oldest and finest restaurant in Norway. Værthuset=guesthouse has a wonderful ambiance to have a meal or a cup of coffee. Besides history, this place also has a soul! Sitting in the courtyard or in the restaurant there can give you timeless feeling and allowing the imagination to run wild back to the 1600s 🙂ærums-verk/

Bærum Verks: ironworks and workers’ lodgings from the 1600s now converted into the most charming area with art & crafts, cafe, shops, museum, sculptures, etc. There is a walking path in the woods near the house and it is a pleasant walk/app 30mins to get here.
Henie Onstad Kunstsenter=Henie Onstad Art Centre: officially opened in 1968 with 100s of contributions from Sonja Henie (Norwegian figure skater who won more Olympic and World titles than any other ladies figures) and husband Niels Onstad (shipping magnate and art patron). The museum has stunning exhibits spanning the 20th century.

In 1940, when the Nazis invaded Norway, she was out of the country. She telegraphed her maid and told her to place a picture of her with Hitler, which he had autographed, in a prominent place in her house. When the Nazis arrived to take over the house, they saw the picture and left quickly. For the rest of the war, all of her possessions were left untouched by the Nazis…

App 1hr by bus south of Oslo is Moss, (pop app 23,000, area: 24.3 sq mi), return tickets NOK200/S$45. A pleasant ride on E6, by passing Tusenfryd/Norway’s largest amusement park and Korsegården/the only stop between Oslo-Moss.

John was at the lakeside with his boat to meet me at Nesparken where the bus stopped. App another 1hr by boat on the lower Vansjø Lake, parts of Mosseelva/Moss River and there it is, an idyllic little cabin on its own island, Ospeholmen across from Dillingøya, a known place for alternative non-military/civil service.

Relaxing with fishing and bird-watching. 3 species of fish which were caught in nets- Abbor/Perch, Brasme/Bream (the smaller ones, taste good except for the tiny Y-shaped bones, got choked a few times. Had to throw them away or risk choking. John was right!) and Gjedde/Pike (the largest one).
Was given a tour of the area where paper mill was once the major industry and livelihood in this area. John being from this area told interesting stories of his ancestors. Another historic fact which some might not know is that the Convention of Moss signed here in 1814, which effectively put an end to the Dano-Norwegian kingdom and solidified the union with Sweden.

Jeløy Naturhus and Galleri F15 in Alby Estate where the stately house and farm with the grounds were donated to the community by the owner. The beautiful alley of trees lead to the buildings and the location commands an unobstructed view to the sea. The 6th Momentum Biennial Imagine Being Here Now is ongoing at present. Thanks to Berit & John for their hospitality at their hytta and for the tour in Moss.

This moment deserves your full attention, for it will not pass your way again –
Dan Millman


9 Jul 2011 –  … but not by choice!

A whole week without being online, not by choice and it just so happened that there is access today. Will see what happens tomorrow! No radio or TV (by choice), like being back to student days in the 1960s! Strange as how one will miss not being online the first few days and then after that you get kind used to it. Done with the painting on the 1st floor except for the sanding of the floor and to give it a layer of varnish.

4th Jul came and went without any special celebrations as it was any normal Mon here.  Bjørn’s parents, Berit & John visited and stayed for a couple of days and it was nice getting to know them. Thu & Fri, visited them in their hytta on a little island in Moss, pix next posting when uploaded, ie if wireless is available!

The terrace exterior needs to be painted, floor and walls as well as the exterior wall at the front entrance. Have not given much thought to the 2nd floor, except to paint the baby’s room green… ie after the aching body and joints have had a break and rested!

Previous posting where wild strawberry was mentioned, so here are some pix from a walk a few days ago; spied on some real senior citizens resting and chatting. Thoughts about L&M’s grandmother Ellen who is honest to say that when she already feels the aches and pains in addition to needing hearing aid, then old-age is to be dreaded!

A good senior citizen joke for the weekend – ENJOY 🙂 🙂 🙂
Morris, an 82 year-old man, went to the doctor to get a physical. A few days later, the doctor saw Morris walking down the street with a gorgeous young woman on his arm. 
A couple of days later, the doctor spoke to Morris and said, 
‘You’re really doing great, aren’t you?’
Morris replied, 
‘Just doing what you said, Doc: Get a hot mamma and be cheerful.’
The doctor said, 
‘I didn’t say that. I said, ‘You’ve got a heart murmur; be careful.’