Monday, August 30, 2010

Dempesy Hill

A few weeks ago, hubby and I went shopping on Dempsey Hill for some furniture.  Window shopping... understand we didn't actually buy anything.  We both have a real issue with spending money like that... lol... ask our kids - our furniture was a brazillion years old!  So I guess I have to say we just browsed.  We did find a couple of things we loved, but we did not commit by buying any of them.  Dempsey Hill is known for shopping and food.  We had originally gone to Dempsey Hill to go to Margarita's Mexican Restaurant:

It is good food with a twist (as most restaurants here are), but for a truer Mexican, I like El Patio in Holland Village better.  More about that another day.  However, Margarita's sure has great atmosphere and the food is nice as well - ahhh, and the Margarita's are great! 

Once we finished eating, we decided there were several furniture places we wanted to revisit.  Dempsey Hill has a lot of great places to shop:

If you look at the picture above again, see that blue sign on the right?

Look closely:

This is one of our favorite places to browse.  There is a reason this place is jam packed  :-)  Check out the great prices here - we found them to be more than reasonable and very helpful.  We will be going back here  :-)

Dempsey even has places to sit and wait for shoppers:

And an entire row of more restaurants:

If you have time to play, this is a great place to do it.  You can go up on the hill to browse, eat and shop - and may you will even buy something.  It makes for a very relaxing day, lots to see and plenty of places to buy some awesome treasures.

Dempsey Hill has a ton of history too.  You should check out the Dempsey Hill page, read all about it, check out the tenants and then head up for a visit.  Be sure and look all around the hill - it can be deceiving - lots of little nooks and crannies to miss places.

Hope to see you on Dempsey Hill!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Spotlights and Fireworks

Not much explanation needed here. Just some shots during the 2010 Youth Olympic Games  :-)

I was bored here and twisted my lens  :-)

See the flyer in the middle?  Lol...

That is all for now folks!  Been spring cleaning trying to find our place.  Fun stuffs!  Hubby is coming home tomorrow.  Have a safe trip babe and I will see you soon.  Thanks for taking such good care of him Steph and punkin'!

Friday, August 27, 2010


This Is not what you think, I know it looks like sin, but it is not.  SIN is what I see when we are booking our flights back to Singapore.  SIN is the acronym for Singapore on our luggage - but how fitting to be the acronym for a city/country known for nearly everything being a sin.  Singapore is known as the "fine city" - a city where anything you do might be sin and you can be fined for quite a lot of things.  It does make it a very safe city though.

But that is not what I am here to talk about.  Today, listening to the radio in the taxi, the traffic watch announcer made this note:  "Traffic is jammed on the PIE near the AYE and traffic is very heavy all the way from the PIE to the CTE.  Please avoid lane 4 on the ECP as there is an accident near the CTE.  Traffic is running smoothly on the SLE and the TPE all the way to the BKE."  Now I am sure I have messed something up in that translation, but you get the general idea.  Everything in Singapore is an acronym.  All the freeways are known by acronyms. 

Freeways are not the only things known by acronyms.  Your child may go to school at the:
SAS (Singapore American School)
RGS (Raffle's Girls' School)
FSS (French Singapore School)
AISS (glad they added the I to the Australian International School Singapore)
SCGS (Singapore Chinese Girls' School) 
TCHS (The Chinese High School)

... or one of the many other schools in Singapore - but you must know the acronym for that school, or no one knows which school you are talking about.  The school may be in AMK (Ang Mo Kio) or WDL (Woodlands) or maybe TPE (Tampines TAM-PAN-eze) or one of the other many acronyms in Singapore's outer lying areas.

The URA (Urban Redevelopment Authority) has set up a nice ride called the MRT (Mass Rapid Transit) to help you go to MOM (Ministry of Manpower) for your SGC (Singapore Green Card) which has your NRIC/FIN (National Registration Identity Card/Foreign Identification Number) to identify you in the NCS (National Computer System).

If you so desire you may ride TIBS (Trans Island Bus Services) which will drop you off at the SAM (Singapore Art Museum) or is it the SBS (Singapore Bus Service) - and can you please tell us which one takes you to the AWA (American Women's Association)?  You should really just call the STA (Singapore Transit Authority) where I am sure they can help you out because I surely cannot.   Maybe you prefer to fly SIA (Singapore Airlines) to the USA (United States of America) or do you have your QDL (Qualified Driving License) so you can drive to KL (Kuala Lumpur)  or JH (Johor) in MY (Malaysia)?

We just celebrated the ND (National Day) with the NDP (National Day Parade) which many people came out of their HDB (Housing Development Board) homes to celebrate.  Some traveled on roads using the ERP (Electronic Road Pricing) in cars to the CBD (Central Business District) for the festivities.  They are proud to have a COE (Certificate of Entitlement) from the LTA (Land Transit Authority) which makes them O$P$ (Owe Money Pay Money) but they are proud owners of a CAR (Automobile).

I hope this made you CAG (chuckle and grin), for we live in the city of SIN (Singapore).  I wish I could tell you IAG (It's All Good), but it STBM (Sucks to be Me) because I CRS (Can't Remember Sh*!) much less the acronym to tell you WIN (What I Need).

B4N (Bye For Now), I am outta here UC (You See) because the acronyms here DMC (Drive Me Crazy) IFKWIM (If You Know What I  Mean).  BSF (But Seriously Folks) IDGI (I Don't Get It), WDWN (Why Do We Need) to say MOM (Ministry of Manpower), MOD (Ministry of Defence), MOE (Ministry of Education), and MRT (Mass Rapid Transit) instead of the real words?  They are NTL (Not That Long) or RWRTLZ (Are We Really That Lazy)?

Off to CMC (Camden Medical Center) for the results of my CBC (Complete Blood Count) so please PFM (Pray For Me) or TPTP (Think Positive Thoughts Please).  SYS (See You Soon), IDTT (I'll Drink To That), LG (Later Gator), I'm GFN (Gone For Now), but NTW (Not To Worry),  I will BBS (Be Back Soon).

The Mermaid Party

I go to Bible Study on Thursdays.  Thankfully it just started up after pausing for the summer holidays as I sure did miss it!  I am studying Crazy Love just in case you are interested.  Watch the videos - they are very interesting and thought provoking.   I love the study, and I only just began it.

After Bible Study each week, a group of us girls who have become friends meet up and head out to lunch.  Last week at lunch, some of us regular girls we were chatting with a group of new ladies; someone from Scotland, someone from the Netherlands and someone from New Zealand.  One of the regular girls from New Zealand suggested that we come to her place for a "Mermaid" Party;  we could eat, have Pavlova (a delicious Australian sweet dish) for dessert and swim after lunch.  Of course were all for it, so we planned to do it this week.

Yesterday was our day to go to Rosanna's place after Bible Study - a nice sized group of girls gathered and headed to her place - some took private cars, some took taxi's and a few hopped on the bus.  We gathered and ate lunch while we visited in a very relaxed setting by the pool.

Soon it was time for Rosanna to bring out the Pavlova.  The cream had already been added to it - now it was just waiting on the fruit:

Rosanna guided one of the girls to put the fruit on it:

All ready for us:

With us anxiously waiting, Rosanna served it:

And it was finally time to try it:

It was delicious!  The look on Debbie's face tells it all  :-) 

A closer look at the yummy dessert!  My best description of how it tastes... hmm; it has a very crunchy roasted marshmallow tasting crust, with fresh cream and fruit.  All together, it is heavenly!

HERE is a link to the first time I ate it.  It is amazingly delicious!  

After eating, several of the girls decided to go swimming.  Deb suggesting becoming a mermaid:

A couple of them did their darnedest to be mermaids:

Some supervised:

And I documented the good times  ;-)

We had a great visit at Rosanna's place, but soon it was time to leave.  Here are a few of the girls heading out - aren't they sweet looking?  Wonder if that is really true?  

I must say, Rosanna was definitely the hostess with the mostest.  We had a wonderful relaxing afternoon by the pool - and a perfect lunch.  Good food, good fellowship and great times.

Thanks Rosanna  :-)

Oh and are these your shoes Ann?

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Let Me Tell You How Rich I Am :-)

I was thinking the other day of all the physical things I would want to take back with me, what would the one I most wanted be?  Many people want to take furniture back; furniture made with woods like Teak and Rosewood would be at the top of the list.  Other people love the private tailors they have hired to have dresses and suits made to fit them like a glove.  Rich Asian rugs with intricate designs are also a popular choice - indeed a nice splash to a home... So with this in mind and our tour coming to a close in less than a year now (11.21 months or 48.57 weeks or 340 days or 243 weekdays or 8160 hours to go - but who is counting?) I was contemplating the things I would really like to take home with me.

I am not a shopper and I think my hubby loves that.  Oh, I browse around, but when it comes right down to picking something out, I think of how hard he has worked to earn that money and how much I want him to be able to retire and enjoy life like I have been privileged enough to do, I nearly always put it back and walk away.  But I do want to have a few memories of Singapore and our life here.  So contemplating what I would treasure to take with me, I finally came up with an answer.  I love the deeply rich colors of Asia - they are breathtaking.  I love the colors of the materials used in garments, on flower pots and kleenex box covers - just anything made in Asia is deeply rich in color.  

However, one of my favorite color palates of all is the Batik material.  I have bought meters and meters of it to bring home with me.  I have found this wonderful 'uncle' (elderly man) in Holland Village that has a batik (an Indonesian patterned material) shop.  He sells aprons, dresses, shirts and bags with it.  And he sells scraps.  Oh, yes, lots of scraps.  Last week, we went by there to buy scraps and his son was there - in a shop that was in shambles.  'Uncle' keeps his shop neat as a pin - it was obvious 'unlce' was not there.  He informed us that his father had had a heart attack and was in ICU.  The artery to his heart was 95% blocked and he would not be back to work for at least 6 weeks - if at all.  Sadly, he said they would not operate on him because 'uncle' was not doing well physically.  We were very sad, but we bought our scraps and moved on.

Yesterday, we decided we needed to back for more scraps - and we needed to introduce a friend to our little gold mine shop.  I am now addicted to those scraps, and just know my daughter and I will fall in love with the mounds of Batiks and make quilts until our hearts are content.  I have decided every time I go to Holland Village, I will buy scraps to go with my meters of batik.

I dreaded rounding the corner, I was afraid our little shop was permanently closed, but we finally made the walk.  As I rounded the corner I held my breath.  I even closed my eyes and said a silent prayer.  You have to understand, in the two years I have been here, I have come to love this uncle.  We do not communicate well; with my English only and his heavy Chinese, we barely make it, but we do communicate.

As I opened my eyes, I was pleased to find the doors lifted and the shop open.  The next task was walking in and finding out if uncle was doing any better...  I hesitantly walked in and who do I see?  UNCLE was there staring back at me!  WHOOT!  

He was back at work looking healthy as an ox. Ok, maybe not an ox, but he was going strong, his antique sewing machine (we guess it to be at least 50 years old) was humming away as he was back to sewing his precious Batik into an array of orders.  Oh.  My.  Gosh.  I was so excited to see him!  I asked him if he was feeling better and he said to me, "Feeling good!  Must work!  Feel good!"  Yippee!  I was on top of the world!  Uncle is doing well despite his poor prognosis.  :-)  His shop was all tidied up, in immaculate order again and we got our bags of scraps.  Bags and bags of scraps!  Oh and I have probably bought a dozen aprons from him (thank you Debbi... lol) but I love them.  And I love the fact I can stand and watch him whip them out on that old machine in a few minutes flat.  It was so nice to know he 'must work' - I know it is what made him recover so quickly. Duty calls  :-)

Yes, I am happy, he is healthier, but more than anything I am rich. I have lots of rich colors to take home with me - and I will get more.  I am in love with the Batik here and I cannot leave Singapore without loads of it.  Can you see me coming home with yards and yards (ooops, meters and meters) of this? 

Isn't it breath taking?  As far as I know, you cannot get Indonesian Batik in the US, but I will bring some home.

I found some other little gems yesterday as well:

Paper Maché eggs! 

Then I tumbled them in the little bowl I got:

Ok, so that doesn't look so nice, but I love the bowl, I love the eggs, I love the scraps and I love the deep rich colors in all of them.  And as I set here caressing my scraps - I know in my heart that I must go out with my friends and buy more batik - it is what makes me happy.

Being rich doesn't have to come in $$$ bills, but it can come in rich colors, rich love, rich lives, rich culture and rich friendships.  I am immersed in all of those.  How did I get to be so lucky?  Yes, I am very, very rich.  I just might be the richest gal in the world!

Singapore Memory Project