Archive for January 2009

The wedding crashers

January 31, 2009

My mother wanted to take us to visit Fo Guang Shan temple in Punggol so we went there at around 11am. As we arrived in the main hall, we realised our timing couldn’t be more perfect. 

A cosy wedding ceremony was just about to take place and the venerables welcomed us to join in and quickly ushered us to some empty seats. As it turned out, a young Chinese lady was getting married to an ang moh from Australia.

And so, we gatecrashed the wedding and sat there throughout the short chanting session, solemnisation, performance and speeches. Despite not knowing the bride and groom, I was still touched to tears.

Later on, I asked R, “Hey is this a sign? What are the chances of us going to a temple and chancing upon a mixed-race couple getting married?”

R, who was too embarrassed about being uninvited guests at the ceremony, was more concerned about getting out of the hall because he said he stuck out as the only ang-moh who wasn’t part of the wedding contingent and the groom’s family must be wondering who he was!

Sneak peak

January 28, 2009


Oh you shouldn’t have!

January 24, 2009


OK, maybe I shouldn’t have moaned so much about my Christmas present. At least it was a lot more practical than this! Spotted on Chek Jawa moments before a park warden chased us off the beach.

Itsy Bitsy Spider

January 22, 2009


Check out this hugeass spider we stumbled upon in Pulau Ubin! We were riding on the tandem when I let out a loud shriek and got R to stop to take a photograph. It’s probably almost as big as an extended palm. Yikes!

DIY hamper

January 21, 2009


Rather than buy a hamper commercially, we decided to source for our own materials and put one together for my family. We found a wicker basket in the UK and brought it home with us, along with a huge tin of Cadburys chocolate biscuits and two bottles of ice wine which my family loves. In Singapore, we got two tins of abalone, a box of mandarin oranges, some festive flowers, coloured ribbons, crepe paper and plastic film. I spent about 30 minutes putting everything together and I really enjoyed the creative process of designing my own hamper. Though it may not be as extravagantly decorated as the commercial variety, I love the idea that everything was carefully handpicked and self-assembled!

On the first morning

January 19, 2009

I woke at 6am after not a bad night’s sleep. After laying quietly in bed for an hour, I got up and went to the minimart to get a newspaper and the coffeeshop for some fried beehoon.

The sky was already nice and light, and everything was quickly coming alive. I relished the fragrance of Asian cooking wafting through the air as I walked to the coffeeshop, that familiar, comforting scent of home. Of oil, garlic, soy sauce. The wonderful sound of the metal spatula clanging against the steel wok.

An old man in pyjamas tucking into a bowl of mee pok fishball noodle soup. A group of elderly ladies chatting over coffee and kaya toast. A boy in his crumpled sleepwear queueing up for milk and cereal.

All that buzz, rush, noise, smell and sights. After laying dormant for 6 months, it’s as if that had awakened me and reminded me what I love about being home.

Ten promises to my dog

January 17, 2009











I knew it was going to be soppy but what I didn’t expect was having to use up half a pack of my tissues because almost every scene triggered my tear ducts. It was rather embarrassing too, wailing on the airplane and busy wiping tears while watching some movie about a fluffy dog. And despite its juvenile title and kawaii appeal, it actually dishes up a lovely, thought-provoking storyline about sacrifices, responsibilities, kinship, friendship and love. I haven’t ever cried so hard for a film, so I’m going recommend that you watch it and be sure you have a big box of Kleenex.