The English House

29 Oct 2018 – A Reminder Of The Good-Old-Days

Sun: how I enjoy any day with the tranquility pitter patter of the rains and today especially when body&soul are still recovering from the past 6months non-stop on the go! Some new purchases to keep me company – the water feature to provide more humidity for a dry cough, tiny stained-glass angel to protect an old delicate hand-blown glass heart♥and ceramic hanging tile.

Appreciations to a dear nephew Clement for a lovely Sat evening where an Old World Charm was brought alive@The English House. This colonial-chic interior decor with good English food (never thought I will say that 🙂 ) is highly recommended.

Restaurant with rooms (rooms are slated to open 2019), low-top marble tables (a reminder of the old coffeeshops), a mix of Terry O’Neill photographs and English carnival-themed sculptures is the dinning ambiance.

Tasty Oxtail Broth En Croute which hit the spot for me.
Beef Tartare (special of the day) – could have done with less salt.

Honey Roast Belly Pork Marco Polo – marinated in honey, it is served with crispy pork skin, HorFun, apple sauce and pan juices – yummy.

Braised Black Angus Beef&Tendon Pie – tender&tasty. Like the broth, the crust of the pie is excellent and that is what the English are good at.

Bread&Butter Pudding (pix credits to The English House), not your usual but was as smooth as valet. The strawberries with meringue&ice-cream was sweet. Had some left overs pork and what good idea to have to sign for it. That way the take-away is at your own risk and that is how it should be.

Made time to even do some food shopping@IKEA later since I had a ride!

Tonight, Sunday’s dinner@House of Peranakan Petit – not hungry but went to catch up with the Wong branch of the family who I have not seen since 4th auntie passed away in 2016. Tkx for including me. Time has really gone by, Josh (19) and the twins Jagger&Jordan (16)!

Was at this venue in 2016 and enjoyed the food here then. Today, the stomach had only room for dessert! SagoGula Melaka – pearl sago pudding drenched in palm sugar and topped with creamy coconut ice cream.

Some good and some sad news:

Congratulations to Irmo High School XCountry for making to States. Pix credits to Elizabeth. Keeping my thoughts&prayers and fingers crossed for Katy&Ellie for a good&safe run and to their Coach Hall for good health and safety somewhere@Sandhills, SC USA on Sat.

Condolences and thoughts&prayers to all affected at the mass shooting at Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh.

Mon: catching up with Wilki@Chinatown – even all these murals are new to me.

Appreciations for lunch&foot reflexology massage at our usual hang-outs and tkx to Daisy for good company. Always be good to your feet, they hold you up and take you to where you want to go! So long cousin, for this time round.

Ibsens Peer Gynt på Gålå

27 Oct 2018 – Ticket For A Play In 2019

Mon: apologies to all who have been trying to reach me on my mobile. Did not realize that it had to be ‘reset’ after I returned. Duh, done now and still alive. Tkx for the concerns.

Managed to gather some energy for banking and got the USBstick off to PP. Like to get this kind of errands done while still fresh in the mind. Was glad to discover that the bank is running an incentive, did the TTA online and the transfer fees are waived.

Tue: kept cousin Wilki co@his favourite Indian mutton soup stall@TekkaMarket. Still unable to smell of taste, so will wait with eating all these yummy foods. He is only here for another week and will have to try and get him to all his favourites.

He is the only cousin and actually the only person who spent time outdoors climbing tress, roaming around Temenggong Rd&Mt Faber with me in the 1950s. We have much fun reminiscing our childhood together.

Wed: 16auntie took Wilkie visiting with 10, 11, &13aunties. Another day to to rest up.

Thu: Wilki was at my place and managed to introduce him to the EastCoastPark as he has never been there. The line of ships out on this coast always managed to amaze most ppl. Lunched@HillStreet CoffeeShop/Marine Cove where he had the DryMincedPork Noodles. Appetite still not there, just had a lemon/honey drink.

Dinner@Jo’s. Got to know my cousin better today when he told me about his VietnamWar experiences where he was seriously injured. This was a war with major consequences for those who lived there and those who fought there.


Fri: TGIF and being typical SIN, stood 2hrs in line for a free HPB HeartRate monitoring fitness tracker. This is with conjunction with the National Steps Challenge Season by Health Promotion Board. Good soup dinner@TiongBahru Plaza Kopitiam since I am in the area. Tkx to Clem for meeting up.

How exciting for this Fall Orchestra Concert – IrmoMiddle School&IrmoHigh School Orchestras with a VikingCellist (#3, the only grandchild born in SIN) playing in the same concert with his sisters. Pix credits to Linn.

Thank you to Jack who was in HKG for the week and got me a signed copy of Martin’s book. Looking forward to checking into these trails next visit to HKG. Pix credits to Jack.


Sat: Happy 94Bday to Ellen, the best grandmother for L&M and great-grandmother to #1-6. She has recently moved to Tromsø to live with Cathrine. Pix from since she turned 90 and credits to Cathrine


Some exciting news from Norway – Neste sommer blir spennende for denne karen! Med tanke på foreldrenes kulturelle meritter så må vel dette tegnes som en ørliten overraskelse next summer will be exciting for this guy! In view of the parents’ cultural record (both parents are medical doctors!) this must be a little surprise! Pix credits of Peder to GD.NO 

The last time I saw this little feller was in 2015 with all his siblings&cousins. Looking forward to catching up in 2019.

My one&only god-daughter, Guri’s son Peder Kjøs (9) has been chosen to play the role of young Peer Gynt – ordered a ticket (NOR800 S$133) to see the play for 10Aug 2019. Have always wanted to see this outdoor performance of Ibsens Peer Gynt på Gålå.

To live is to war with trolls in heart and woul.
To write is to sit in judgement on oneself – Ibsen’s Peer Gynt

Highlights From Grandchildren

21 Oct 2018 – And The Trip in Italy

Fri: TGIF – being under the weather is the body’s way to react and I will have to listen as there is hardly any energy left with this persistence cough. Just need to rest and now add to the injury, unable to taste of smell anything – good for the diet but not sure if this is the way to die(t) 🙂

Sat: am truly blessed with amazing grandchildren. They made my day and made me a happy&proud grandmother. Katie&Ellie in XCountry RegionChamp (pix credits to IrmoAthletics) with their greatest supporters Linn, Jeff, John, Sophie&James (pix credits to CindyHall).

Congratulations to Ellie for her perfect scores on state testing (pix credits to IrmoMiddleSchool). Will have to start using their names instead of # now that they are ranking in their academic and athletics achievements.

Have rescheduled my weekend plans so that I can fully recover. Was too much on the go the past 6months and did not listen to my body when I should have, now to pay for the consequences!


To my non-SIN family&friends, these are good times to visit SIN so that they can soak in the festivities and get a break from the winter for those in WinterWonderLands. Beautiful lights@LittleIndia, OrchardRd, Chinatown, GeylangSerai to look forward to on this 721,5km² SIN island. The diversities of cultures&foods are highly recommended and can be enjoyed by all for Deepavali/Nov, Christmas/Dec, CNY/Feb&HariRaya. Pix from various years postings.

Sun: still have to settle the accounts with PP and to mail her the USB stick. Also looking forward to receiving hers to update this posting. Highlights from us for the Italy trip.

KKThe Roman Theatre/Puglia. Pix credits to KK.


Ian – Matera drive up the Aegean Coast & Rome. Pix credits to PP&Ian


PP – keeping us alive. Driving up the coast and having lunch on the deck. Pix credits to PP&Ian

Me – meeting Niké Arrighi Borghese&family@Palazzo/Palace Borghese in Artena. 

Thank you for good driving and for getting us all safely thru’out the trip. Not an easy drive thru’ the historic districts in that huge car, would have been easier to drive one of these tiny one on those narrow cobble-stone roads 🙂 No pix of the first car which was not suitable, tried loading the luggage to discover that there was no way to fit them all. Just the licence plate of the next car and finally success with the 3rd car. Forgot to take pix when it was fully loaded.

The ppl you travel with, may they be family, friends or strangers in tour-groups play a big part in the trip’s success. Travelling with my oldest friends is the trip I always look forward to the most. We decided to catch up at different places and our first trip was in WA 2009. Who knows if, or where&when the next will be?

Travel changes you. As you move through this life and this world you change things slightly, you leave marks behind, however small. And in return, life – and travel – leaves marks on you – Anthony Bourdain

Italian Shoes

18 Oct 2018 – ALODD By Aldo Lipari

Mon: things in the apt are more or less uncovered and can breath again but not so quite there yet where jet-lag is concerned 🙁

Tue: lunch@ImperialTreasureNanBei and to settle my debts for the Italy trip. Tkx to KK, finally had a bowl of decent congee that I have been carving for. Pix credits of Aldo&I to KK.

Also to meet with Aldo Lipari, owner of Dimora Sant’Elia, the house we rented in Gagliano del Capo, Italy. Not only does he has good taste for his property, he also happens to be a good shoe designer – appreciations to him for explaining about good quality shoes.

Some Italian shoes have long standing reputation for their quality and style. Bought my first pair of Italian shoes BrunoMagli app 40yrs ago and still have them, except that I am unable to walk in those heels any longer – but the quality and style are timeless.

ALODD are made only for men and in SIN, you can find them@Takashimaya. Highly recommended to all my male friends who are looking for quality, comfort&style (causal or formal) in their non-hiking footwear. Feel the soft leather and check out their piping-seam&hand-sewn soles, only way to prevent the shoe from cracking&separating from the sole as time goes by.

Even I who is reluctant to wear closed-shoes here in the tropics would be tempted to get a pair. Good shoes are important as they take care of your feet, the foundation that supports the rest of your body.


Wed: tkx for my favourite PrawnNoodle, but where is this crowd from in the middle of a working week? Was not feeling my best – besides chicken soup, a yummy bowl of this can work wonders, tkx to nephew.

Pix credits to Hannah

Excited to see a young friend who has recently started her cycle journey from Germany to SIN – a few days ago somewhere at the Elbe near Tangermünde/Germany. Looking forward to following their trip which they have estimated to arr in SIN sometime in early 2020. Good luck to Hannah&Heiko and a safe journey to them.

You are only young once, and if you work it right, once is enough – Joe E. Lewis


Thu: have not been really at par for my usual self with a cough returning to keep me awake the past 2nights. Off to the polyclinics and have been given meds for the flu. Again, another coincidence – bumped into one of my neighbours as I was trying to hail a cab and she insisted to drive me.  During the drive she told me about her sister who was a classmate from Dublin days, should go look up Linda when I am back in Norway again. Need to rest now – the downsides as the years go by.

Back To Food Paradise

14 Oct 2018 – And Constructions 

Fri: TGIF – good to see family again and appreciations to Les&Ivy for this WinePairing Dinner@Culina.

The cracker, fig, ocean trout and crab-cake were tasty.

My portion of lamb was just the right size size and done to perfection – brown outside and pink, moist and tender. Could have gone without the oxtail and if I had thought of it earlier, should have doggie-bag it like Les did. Poor him! coughing and wheezing away very badly!

The dough of the Profitroles could be thinner but filling with ice-cream helped. Had a sip of all the different 6wines. Did not like the Shiraz, the rest were OK but we are all certainly very spoiled by Les where wines are concerned. Am sure glad that I do not have to wash all these glasses.

Thank you to Wiggs for gifts from the US. Am blessed with such thoughtful family&friends around the world.

map downloaded

Sat: welcome back to the never-ending constructions, no NOT a complain, just an update! Looking forward to the completion of the TEL (brown-line) MRT. If still around, will be able to take the underground from where I am to Woodlands without any changes.


Looking forward to our local street food again –  2above pix downloaded. More so now that I have got news that cousin Wilki from HI will be visiting next week.

Started today with NasiLemak – just dawn on me that my neighbourhood NasiLemak stall-owner looks like Ali, one of the casts in SIN local drama Tanglin. Did asked and and he is not and no relationship, but was told that I was not the first one to ask – eye-sight must still be intact 🙂

Sun: a wake in the common area of some prominent soul or rather prominent survivours of the deceased. Have not seen so many wreaths in this area until now. Soon the paper mansion, Mercedes and chests of gold will be in flames and again I do question about these rituals? Besides polluting the environment, there are many issues that will open into too many cans of worms – each to their own beliefs but do wish that they do not have to go past 22hrs with these chanting and other noises. Count my blessings that besides my sight, my hearing is still intact!!

Finally in between snoozes, postings in this blog are more or less edited and updated over a lovely cool&wet weekend.


Condolences to all who have lost family&friends in Hurricane Micheal in FL, the strongest tropical cyclone to strike the US since Andrew in 1992.


And the snowstorm on MtGurja (7,193m), the lap of the south face of MtDhaulagiri in Nepal. Thoughts and prayers are out to all affected.

Most floods are caused by man, not weather; deforestation, levee construction, erosion, and overgrazing all result in the loss of ecosystem services –  Hawken

Back To The Red Dot 2018

11 Oct 2018 – OSL-LGW-SIN


IMG_9900Fri: tkx to Mette&Trine for meeting up@Egon Ullevål. Was not hungry, had just a milk-shade while they others had lunch. Needed to rest for the afternoon and had a good 8hrs sleep for the night.

Also a nice bath with this bath-oils from Lush – if anything else, the colour can remind me that only my toes touched the Adriatic&Ionian Sea

Sat: easy day snoozing, laundry&repacking. Congratulations to Irmo XC@2018 Asics Invitational in GA/USA. Proud of my first-born and #1&2 who placed #1 (20:27.16) & 8 (20:45.54) out of 196runners.

Girls -1st Place in the 5-7A Division with 35teams thru’out the SE.
Boys – 6th Place in the 5-7A Division with 36teams thru’out the SE.
Way to go runners&coaches Linn&Jeremy. Pix credits to John Goodale.


Sun: found this poor little bird on the balcony this morning. Took a pix to ask May what I should do with it? Was asked to put it in a plastic bag in the freezer as it is an unusual sort. Was later told that it is a stjertmeis-Long-tailed tit and it is not usual to find it in this area, so the poor little thing probably got lost during migration and flew into the glass door 🙁

May&fam arr home in the early afternoon. Took #6 to a Norwegian movie he wanted to watched. Nice to have some hours with him. Have not been into this cinema since nearly 50yrs ago where I watched The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (1969). Am amazed with my own memory! Off to the airport with the last train.

Mon: dep OSL in the early morning rains on a 2hrs flight (fell asleep before take off and all the way!) to rainy LGW with 1hr layover there. 12+hrs flights snoozing, catching up with movies was smooth, uneventful and on schedule arr into SIN in the early Tue morning rains.

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12079703_10153067931781971_4289854151093350173_n - CopyTue: feel kinda out of it where time is concerned. Sad that my favourite Congee&ChaiTowKway stalls are no longer@the MT wet market. Was later told by Aud that they are gone for good cos folks getting old for the owner’s legs getting weaker so they rented out the place. 

It will be difficult to find anything like these 2stalls in the neighbourhood. Will miss them, probably a reason to go on a diet…

Wed: had to watched this so much talked-about movie, Crazy Rich Asian – entertaining and feel good movie. Pix downloaded. Nice to see my old school’s CHIJ chapel – memories of the masses attended there. Wonder what the nuns would have thought to see the chapel decorated like this for a wedding? Niece Pat&Albert’s elegant wedding (Dec1998) in this chapel – without banana leafs, red lanterns&water 🙂

According to an old school-mate&ex-journalist Irene – in conversation with several nuns during and after the move, i found them curiously (to my mind) unemotional about leaving the chapel etc behind. But i guess that is what being a religious is about. Not being ridiculously attached to material things.

The mahjong scene was quite clever.  Pix downloaded. My children will probably agree with this quote below.

Twenty Ways You Can Tell You Have Asian Parents. Number one on the list: Your parents never, ever call you just to say hello ― Kevin Kwan, Crazy Rich Asians. 

Thu: morning has broken bright&early with a beautiful sunrise, quite a change from yesterday’s weather. Tkx to sis Jo for dinner and good to catch up with niece Sue too.

After 2nights of decent 8hrs sleep, am ready to tackle 6months of mail and dust! And also to edit&update blog when the mood permits! Strange, but having vague memories that I first got married today in Dublin/Ireland 49yrs ago!!!

Italy (6) 2018

4 Oct 2018 – Bus, Car, Metro, Train & Plane


Tue: back to Villa del Priorato di Malta by 0930hrs and thank goodness there were only 2ppl there ahead of us. My camera was not good enough to capture any shots, but Ian got some. This one is a pix of a book cover –  was well worth the time to peep thru’ this peekhole!

Museo nazionale delle arti del XXI secolo, national museum of 21st-century arts is a national museum of contemporary art and architecture and what a complete contrast from what have been in view for the past 2weeks. Liked the ceiling in the cafe which actually gave the sound like life-music thru’ the speakers…


The ink from this fountain aggravated my coughing and really got me sneezing non-stop that I had to leave the room.


Interesting sign and space usage. Nice sofa design, but not comfortable for short ppl like me! Maybe better for those with a more intimate relationship!!

Museo Nazionale Etrusco The National Etruscan Museum is a museum of the Etruscan civilization, housed in the Villa Giulia –


somewhere you can spend 1week and yet unable to see it all.


KK could live there 🙂

IMG_9796IMG_9812IMG_9835 - CopyIMG_9822

National Gallery of Modern Art, is an art gallery founded in 1883 and dedicated to modern and contemporary art; the full name is Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea. Sometimes time&life can certainly be soo Out of Joint!!!

Was too tired to join the group for their evening walks.

Wed: group out shopping and more sight-seeing. Short morning walk by-passing this dog-walker. Decided on the bus-tour – do not deal well with the heat, crowds and noise. Even then someone tried to con me in bright daylight on top of the stairs by the Metro. Survivour of the fittest and hopefully I am no longer the naive person I was when I first visited Rome another life-time in LaLaLand.

Princess Ann: At midnight, I’ll turn into a pumpkin and drive away in my glass slipper.
Joe Bradley: And that will be the end of the fairy tale – Roman Holiday movie

Unable to live to the fullest in Rome – was just so out of sort the last 3 evenings, but still enjoyed my oldest friends to the fullest. Also big cites&crowds+the heat are no longer my forte. Maybe being on the go for 6months have something to do with it too.

Thu: dark and early to the Metro EUR1.50 S$2.40 to connect with the regional train to the airport EUR8 S$12.75. Fight from FCO-OSL was smooth&on schedule with views of the Italian coastline and beautiful sightings of the Alps.

Good thing about Budget flights is that you get the same views as full price commercial – KK

Arr into refreshing temps, 5-9°c with lovely Fall colours and the last rose blooms of the year. May&fam are away in Tromsø to celebrate B’s mother 70Bday.

Take time daily to reflect on how much you have. It may not be all that you want but remember someone somewhere is dreaming to have what you have ― Germany Kent

Italy (5) 2018

1 Oct 2018 – From Churches to A Palace

Mon: what a privilege to be invited to lunch by Princesses Niké Arrighi Borghese&her daughter Flavia@Palazzo/Palace Borghese in Artena. 

While waiting for Niké@MontiTirburtini Metro station, we spied these brave roof-workers in action! Not a job for a faint heart!!

Was excited to discover that Frascati, one of my favourite Italian whites is around the drive to Artena. Was driving in and out of rain showers with a typical Italian driver who would occasionally take her hands off the wheel when she felt lost! Ian had to close his eyes, especially after we got out of the car-park at the M-station…

It has been nearly 40yrs ago when I last met Egidio&Danellie, and now they are grandparent to 3. Good to know that Egidio still paints.

Flavia was a professional chef at one time and made this delicious memorable meal.

An enchanting country palace with 3generations living there – Niké with her daughter Flavia and grand daughter Agata.

Niké – a beautiful person with many talents who lives her gracious life fully.

Appreciations to Niké for the highlight of this trip and a day to remember. The idiot-proof camera does not justify the pix here, but hopefully Ian has better ones.

The National Archeological Museum of Palestrina is housed inside the Renaissance Barberini Palace, the former baronial palace, built above the ancient temple of Fortuna. It exhibits the most important works from the ancient town of Praeneste.

The famous sculpture of the Capitoline Triad is exhibited on the first floor. The second floor is dedicated to the necropoli and sanctuaries, while the third floor contains a large polychrome mosaic depicting the flooding of the Nile (Nile mosaic of Palestrina).

Grazie mille to our Italian friends for all their kind hospitality. As we watched the sun-rays with Rome in the far background, I am at a awe and completely loss of words with the ancient Roman Empire.

Advice in old age is foolish; for what can be more absurd than to increase our provisions for the road the nearer we approach to our journey’s end – Marcus Tullius Cicero. And since the quote talks about death, it should be noted that Cicero himself was killed at the orders of Mark Antony (Marcus Antonius). Apparently, Cicero’s last words to his captors were – There is nothing proper about what you are doing, soldier, but do try to kill me properly.

3 Happy Bday CHONG SiongYin

6 Happy Bday David WONG

7 Happy Bday Leslie LAM

8 Happy Bdays Larry LAM, Audrey WONG and KONG HengSun

12 Happy Bday Karen SCAF-BENHAM

13 Happy Bday David YUNG

16 Happy Bday Patricia LAM

21 Happy Bdays Steve LAM & Dee HALL

27 Happy Bday Ellen HALD sr

29 Happy Bdays LAM KwokLock Kiera CHUA

31 Happy Bdays Adeline LEE, Mark BOROWSKY and Happy Halloween

Italy (4) 2018

30 Sep 2018 – Gagliano del Capo To Rome


Sat: condolences to Honey&family for the passing of Bear who I recently caught up with @2018TrailDays in ME. Such a privilege to have him crossed this life’s journey.


Last morning@our regular coffee-joint – our guy let me have a taste of the local liquor – Vecchino Amaro de Capo (the most loved Italian liquor), which should be served chilled. At a temperature of -20°C, the mint, aniseed and liquorice emerge in all their strength, while the herbs create a fresh taste.

Headed the other side of the heel towards Gallipoli. Tamer coastline, but with different beautiful blue shades of the Ionian Sea. Leuca, a charming seaside town where there is an underpass from some hotel to the beach and interesting Moorish designed houses.

Quite a unique place, SunsetCafe, Capilungo especially the restroom signs. This must be the only place on earth where there are so many do NOTs apart from SIN.

Winds were strong and was quite surprised to discover that these cairns are not cemented together. How on earth do these remain in tact??

Coastal Garden Racale@TorresSuda (The City of Folly).

Lunch@Marechiaro in Gallipoli – 1st taste of the larger type of raw bloody cockles, delicious

The old charming town is located on an island by the Ionian Sea, on the west coast of the Salentina Peninsula. 

Baroque cathedral of Sant’Agata (17th century). It has a richly decorated façade in carparo, a local limestone, with niches featuring statues of saints.

Church of Santa Maria della Purità (1661).


Last night with a beautiful sunset on the roof-top in this lovely house@Gagliano del Capo and was too tired to go eat out. Had simple and left-overs to clear out the fridge. Was hoping to have a night-cap at the local cafe after our guy gave me a taste of Vecchino Amaro de Capo. But alas had to pack – will have to pass love this time round 🙂

Sun: up bright&early on the road to Brindisi airport to return the Avis rented car (EUR200 S$318pp for 10days). Quite a nice airport for a small place – tkx to KK for this pix of the tired travelers on an uneventful less than 1hr flight.

The uber ride from FCO into Rome was quite a drama – poor driver hit some unavoidable metal debris from an accident ahead and we had to change to another van on the lay-by of the highway. Cough got worst, but thank goodness for travelling with medical doctors who ensure me that I will live 🙂

Nice accommodations on the suburbs of Rome by the Aventine Hills, one of the 7hills in Rome.

Good views of St. Peter’s Basilica and The National Monument of Victor Emmanuel II (Monumento Nazionale a Vittorio Emanuele II)

Sant’Anselmo all’Aventino


Ppl-watching while we had something to drink and nice to see an elderly well-groomed couple playing cards and seemed to be enjoying each other.


Basilica di Santa Sabina  – the oldest basilica in Rome, built between 422 and 432. Ppl here put themselves on a 2yrs waiting list to get married in.


Villa del Priorato di Malta – at the northern side of the square the monumental entrance screen is located. The villa is best known for a small keyhole (Il Buco Della Serratura) in the arch-headed central portone, thru’ which the copper-green Saint Peter’s Basilica’s dome can be seen. Line was too long, will return Tue morning. Too tired to go out to dine, group got me some yummy bacalhau.

Cough has been persistent and now worse. Tkx to PP who started me on anti-B and another course of steroids. This too shall pass.

It’s not bad to cough. But cover your mouth when coughing. It’s not bad to complain. But cover your mouth when complaining, else you’ll spread infections of complains on us! ― Israelmore Ayivor