Last Day for the Snake

30 Jan 2014 – Until Another 12 years!

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Linn’s winters in Norway from 1974-78 when the winter of 1978 lasted until mid May. Even the locals there thought it overwhelming and the news into the local papers then! That was also the year May was born. Getting paranoid about getting as many old pix as possible in a digital format!

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Thank you to nephew Clement  for my birthday gift, a pass to SEA Aquarium****world’s largest aquarium. Beautiful life under the sea is a serene way to spend an afternoon at Resorts World at Sentosa.
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Took the time to walk on Sentosa Boardwalk with fond memories of this area which has been my childhood playgrounds (the green foothills of Mt Faber in the back ground of the ship and VivoCity).
7dallasbuyersclub00_450_190x272_b1271c226aDallas Buyers Club****loosely based on the true-life tale of a drug taking, women loving, homophobic man who was diagnosed with full-blown HIV/AIDS and given 30days to live. He started taking FDA approved AZT, which brought him to the brink of death. To survive, he smuggled non-toxic, anti-viral medications from all over the world, but still illegal in the US…
Brilliant acting from Matthew McConaughey, giving a slight idea as how the FDA works 😦
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Belated Bday dinner for Leonard and I with Clement at VivoCity Serenity Spanish Bar & Restaurant***sitting outside with a lovely breeze. What a wonderful way to spend one of the few last days of the Snake Year, in the area where I was born and grew up in.
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Appreciations to Les&Ivy for reunion dinner.
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In Quest of Good Big…

27 Jan 2014 – …Prawn Noodles in SIN!

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IMG_1130Fri: thanks Sebastian for introducing Wah Kee Big Prawn Noodles****at Pek Kio Market Food Centre/Owen Rd 41A/01-15. Here the big fresh prawns are served separately. The broth is excellent, even when slightly on the salty side, but then most outside food are either too salty or too sweet for my palate!

There are still a few more venues to try this dish before figuring out which is best to my taste!

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Returned to the National Museum to take pix and read more in details of the SIN Living Gallery displays of Film & Wayang and Food, some of my favourite things to do 🙂 When with visitors, time is usually not on my side. Took an afternoon to read and enjoy these displays. Such fond memories of the Satay man and TokTok mee from childhood. Younger generation have no idea as to what I am rambling about 🙂 🙂

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From left: Steven, Andrew, PohKit, standing from left: Daisy, Darryl, Judy, Vincent, Annie, Stanley, me and Clement. Sat: appreciations to niece Daisy for including me to their hot-pot family reunion dinner. Found a pix/early 1960s of bro Steven&family with Vincent & Judy, before DaisyClement existed! Still remember visiting Daisy at the hospital when Darryl was born. Today he is a fine young man, 15yrs and taller than most of us. With Stanley/18 and Andrew/7, there are 3 in the purple generation here.

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Have been told by Annie, who believes in the Chinese horoscope and fengshi that the Year of the Horse will be excellent for those born in the Year of the Ox, ie Jo, PohKit & I. Of course what can be better than having my whole family together, come April… counting the days, 73.

Sun: lovely morning visit from Kitty and Yasmin. Tkx for dinner at Les&Ivy’s. Good to see KimBeng and the kids who are now young adults, Edwin/18 & Heather/20 who has just returned to SIN after a semester in Germany. Thank you KimBeng for the ride back to the EastC.

Mon: really need to rest and space out for one day before the mad CNY rush. This trip in SIN has so far been too busy but always wonderful to catch with family & friends.

We need not feel ashamed of flirting with the zodiac.  The zodiac is well worth flirting with – DH Lawrence

Last Weekend for the Snake

25 Jan 2014 –  Before the Horse Gallops in…

IMG_1359Oklahoma_City_National_Memorial_viewed_from_the_south_showing_the_memorial_chairs,_Gate_of_Time,_Reflecting_Pool,_and_Survivor_TreeWed: Happy 12th Birthday to #1 grandchild Katy who is born in OK City. She  & James are the  grandchildren whom I was not present at birth but was there soon after her birth. Memories of Gator as a puppy in the kitchen with a floor lined with newspaper.

Visited the National Memorial in serene surroundings of a reflecting pool and 168 empty chairs, a reminder of the people who lost their life in the 1995 bombing.

imagesCANR1HR3Her***set in the Los Angeles of the slight future, the story follows Theodore Twombly, a complex, soulful man who makes his living writing touching, personal letters for other people. Heartbroken after the end of a long relationship, he becomes intrigued with a new, advanced operating system…

Interesting concept and at the rate of our high tech, anything is possible but  would be sad to interact only with a voice!

7augustosagecounty00_450_190x272_6978f83321Thu: August: Osage County****set in OK in August where Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts played their roles as mother and daughter and did an excellent job. When the man of the house disappears, the family gets together to look for him but only to find a few days later that he has committed suicide. A series of conflicts and skeletons exposed for the entire family after the funeral!

Life and drama in the Midwest’s never ending corn fields…

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Dinner with Henry in Chinatown and to take pix of the lights. Do not intend to go into Chinatown until after the CNY. The last weekend before the CNY is going to be crowded and even for a Thu night, the crowds are staring… like the horse, I too will be galloping away from the crowds 🙂

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LoHei Teochew style at Lee Hui (Ah Hoi)*** is not like our Cantonese (28 indigents!), still good and a nice change.

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Delicious food at Northeast Restaurant***Green Bean Noodle with carrot, cucumber and sauce; sautéed Hot & Sour shredded potatoes with green chilli.

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Fri: welcome to SIN, Sylvia from Germany. A lovely morning walk at EC Park with Sylvia and Peggy who wanted to take the orchid pix from the pervious posting for her Orchid Society.  Today we spotted 2 more orchid in bloom (too tiny for decent pix from my camera) and this delicate flower from the Barringtonia asiatica tree.

A  good horse should be seldom spurred – Thomas Fuller

First 2014 Lo hei/撈起

21 Jan 2014 –  Once Upon a Time in Dublin Fair City…

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yusheng

IMG_1039Sun: welcome to SIN Yasmin from NY/USA. This beautiful lady is the daughter of Kitty ( a friend and music teacher) and I used to baby-sit her when she was born in Dublin/Ireland.

We were living in 16 Waterloo Rd then, cousins, Lock, Yun and Chai on the 3rd floor, Leslie, Joyce and I on the 2nd floor and Kitty and Dean in the basement. Yasmin tells me that she is in her mid 40s now and I do not know if I should believe her…

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Thank you to Les&Ivy for this first 2014 LoHei and dinner at Crystal Jade Golden Palace**** at Paragon. For cousin Anna this is her first ever and probably for Yasmin too! Great to catch up with this group from Dublin days. Will be able to recognise them anytime, so that means that none of them have aged… clock-wise sitting: Kitty, Anna, Jo, me, Yasmin, Ivy, PeckHar, standing, Charles, Leslie, HungSoo and Mrs Charles/PeckHar’s sister.

IMG_1053IMG_1052Mon: lunched at Boon Tong Kee chicken rice with Anna who had to check out of her hotel by 12n. Am not impressed with the Balestier Rd Boon Tong Kee branch. Was hoping to take her to the MacRitchie TreeTop Walk. Unfortunately it is closed on Mondays. Had an afternoon to catch up with who is who on the TSANG side, ie my maternal side.

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IMG_1058IMG_1059A pleasant walk on East Coast park with lovely orchid in bloom. Appreciations to Peggy Tan for the name of this beauty – Cymbidium finlaysonianum. Bought some satay & otak at East Coast Lagoon Food Village for dinner at sis Jo’s. Saw Anna off at the airport hoping to show her the Kinetic Rain in T1 but it was not meant to be, the sculpture is under maintenance!

Safe journeys and she will need to revisit for the Walk and the Kinetic Rain 🙂 Que Sera, Sera…

Naked Buddha sculptures unveiled in Jinan, Shandong province, China - 19 Jan 2014images

http://www.bbc.com/culture/story/20140120-too-cheeky-for-china

The identity of their creator is a mystery but I thought I it rather befitting with a sense of humour as it was on the wall of a hot pot restaurant. The installation was nicknamed ‘Buddha Jumps Over the Wall’ after an expensive Cantonese soup that is a Chinese delicacy. Some thought it was distasteful and they had to be removed…

Such a pity, but each to their own! Just discovered that this soup dish has sharks’ fin in it, so a definite NO NO NO!

The below message was posted today, amazing that this blog is now 6yrs. Appreciations to Lucy who introduced me to wordpress.
Happy Anniversary!

You registered on WordPress.com 6 years ago!

Thanks for flying with us. Keep up the good blogging!

Word count: 414 Draft saved at 6:13:16 pm. Last

Welcome Cousin Anna from Canada

18 Jan 2014 – And Kitty from Sierra Leone/Africa

IMG_0946Tue: dentists are not my favourite visits even though I am fond of my dentist cousin Ken 🙂 Somehow is it not easy to talk when the mouth is packed with instruments 🙂 🙂 Managed to take an easy and lazy day dosing and reading, but then have to be careful not to doze too much or unable to sleep at night! Created a plate of wing-bean salad but had to dump it into the soup to soften it, usually prefer it fresh and crunchy… alas not this time!!

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Above pix from 1954, 1956 at the old Island Club and Christmas 1961 or 62?

IMG_0915IMG_0917Thank you to my dearest parents for this blessed life. Two pix from 1950 & 1963 good memories of mother. She passed on in her early 50s/1965. Tomorrow it will be 64yrs ago she gave birth to me, the youngest of her 7 children!

Still remember the 1963 pix, the first day of CNY and she was rushing to sew my dress the night before. She was a fantastic seamstress and sewn most of her’s & the family’s clothes.

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71f3a00795486_190x272_b2ced243ffWed: Happy Bdays to Angie/USA and me. Nice to hear from family and friends and such beautiful cake pix on FB. Thank you everyone for their kind and thoughtful greetings. Watched The Secret Life of Walter Mitty***a timid magazine photo manager who lives life vicariously through daydreams who embarks on a true-life adventure when a negative goes missing…

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Appreciations to sis Jo for dinner, thank you for her family’s  company. Lucas & Beth love blowing out candles and I am still paranoid about it…

IMG_0971Thu: what a lovely surprise to hear that Kitty is visiting her mom for the CNY. Met up for breakfast and later had the pleasure to meet with her mom, Mrs Eu, en elegant and remarkable 92yr lady. Kitty was one of my music teachers in Dublin. Looking forward to meeting up with Yasmin  (Kitty’s daughter) who I baby sat in the 1970s. She too will be visiting for the CNY.

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Fri: at the airport to meet with cousin Anna who was lucky to get out of Toronto the day when all the arrival flights were cancelled. She wants her independence and has booked herself a non-refundable hotel room! Great to catch up at the airport, saw her off to the hotel, had lunch and left her to explore. SIN is a safe and easy place to move about if one is adventurous and go with an open mind. Have learnt that for S$20 will give you unlimited rides on the buses and MRTs for 3 days/tourist pass.

One of my best Bday gifts, Katy made it into the Honors Orchestra. Looking sooo forward to hearing her play again. Yeah, way to go #1 grandchild!

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Marine Terrace Market

14 Jan 2014 – What We locals Call Wet Market/WetM

WetM is a must-see attraction for a true cultural experience of SIN. WetM are fresh food markets and named due to using water to clean the floors for different reasons like ice-melting, fish-cleaning and veggie-washing. These markets are operated with the lively sounds of good old-fashioned commerce. Some people will suppose that wet markets are wet and dirty, but the fact is that they are clean, colourful and vibrant…

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http://www.thebestsingapore.com/best-shopping/the-best-5-wet-markets-in-singapore/

There are two sections in a typical WetM, the wet and dry area. Products such as meat, fish are constantly sold at the wet area while dry area is the place for selling sacks of herbs, spices, rice, dried noodles, dried seafood, and beans.

The best time to explore WetM is in the early morning. Most of them open at 0500hrs or earlier and close before noon to keep the freshness for the products.

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IMG_0939Sun: usually do my shopping at the MT WetM on the weekends, especially the weekend just passed, Made a big pot of soup to be ready by Mon to go on a liquid diet due to a tooth extraction!! There was a promotion on this electric lunch box. Being a fan of cooking and kitchen-ware gadget, bought this for S$50 and found it useful for steaming, and a healthy way to cook!

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The pros about wetM are that the prices are cheaper than supermarket ( a local 24hrs Giant just around the corner from the WetM) and  can buy in small quantity, 1 carrot or 1 stalk of celery, etc. A large pot of soup (should last for 2-3 days) with 1kg+ of pork bones & meat, 1 large carrot, potato & onion, garlic & ginger for seasoning and green onions & cilantro for garish will cost about S$10.

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Fresh flowers usually orchid or Heliconia or any of the ginger flower family for S$4-5, these local flower can last up to 2 weeks.

Mon: not a good day, it is the 13th but not a Fri! First the alarm did go but luckily managed to rescheduled the dental app. On the way home, could not find my keys and with a groggy mind, just headed to the door so that I can figure out what the next step will be. Joy to discover that the keys were still in the pad-lock! Thank goodness no one else noticed!! Feeling the discomfort after saying goodbye to one of my teeth who has been with me for nearly 60yrs 😦 even the yummy home-made soup is no comfort but then also it is time to lose weight 🙂

To market, to market, to buy a fat pig;
Home again, home again,jiggety jig.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           
To market, to market, to buy a fine hog;
Home  again, home again, joggety jog –

Years of Dust and Mess

10 Jan 2014 – How I Dread Clearing Paperwork!

168594_486767801970_5404100_n2575_56639272086_1798862_nThu: amazing that niece Judy is 50 today and she does not look more than a day older than 30! Nephew Lee is 40 today too and it seems like yesterday that I pulled him up from the swimming pool where he was swallowing a lot of water then! Happy Birthdays to both and having a niece who is 50 sure does make me feel like life has gone by like a blink of an eye 😉

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Nice pot-luck dinner and lots of laughter and fun at Lynne’s with the CHIJ ladies from 1962 (except for Mary). Clockwise: Shirley, Penny, Sylvia, myself, Mary, Evelyn, Rebecca, Lydia, Pat, Angela and Lynne. Thank you Lynne and her husband David for hosting this so that we can feel young again 🙂 Looking forward to her next trip back to SIN and safe journeys back to the UK.

Fri: Happy 25th Bday to grand-nephew Ang Kee Yang. Now this really makes me feel my age!!

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The desk and files desperately need to be cleared and paperwork updated. Shredding papers from 2002-2012 is quite a job! These few days are when time is with me to get this done before arrival of more guest and the CNY ahead.  Will try to be disciplined to get this done before dental surgery next week… more to dread 😦

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Checking into some of my complain list and the last complain made regarding a dangerous taxi driver was in Apr 2010. Was asked then if I would testify to suspense the taxi driver’s licence. Replied that I am not here to break anyone’s rice bowl but would appreciate that he gets a warming. Impressed that the matter was promptly taken care of.

https://amylamsg.wordpress.com/2010/04/20/taxi-driver-from-sin/

https://amylamsg.wordpress.com/2010/05/21/follow-up-taxi-driver-from-sin/

IMG_0801Wrote in again a week ago regarding a car obstructing traffic by the bus stop and attaching pix with this complain. Not the first time with inconsiderate drivers but this time it was not just a quick load off or on. Was still there even after I had to cross the road to shop and crossed back. Hope that a solution can result from constructive complains.

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Have a great weekend y’all…