::Life's Little Mystery::

life requires lots of love, and loving brings life

Monday, May 31, 2010

Last weekend of May

We're already at the last day of May. It seems like just yesterday was labour day. Now we're moving on to the last month of the first half of 2010. Does anyone else think that time is flying by as well?

Much has happened during the Wesak weekend.

1. Blood & organ donation. 
I have donated blood every year since 2007 as part of my individual Social Responsibility (SR) Campaign. This year was no different, I made my way to the Utama Buddhist Centre in Bandar Utama to do my part. Only this year, I had a different memory - I fainted. Hehe. Quite a dramatic story. One that earned me the nickname Ms. P (Ms Pengsan) from the bf. Ish.

My little squeeze doll
2. Penang getaway
Right after my blood donation and fainting fiasco, we made our way to penang to join my girlies and the bf's boys. 3 days 2 nights filled with food, girlie time, group charades, 1 fainting fiasco and more food. :)
Smooth journey on the way there. Can't say the same for our journey back on Sunday. 
We ended the trip in Ipoh for their Chicken rice / hor fun for dinner. One reason is also to beat the on going jam back to KL.

3. Wooi Teng's wedding
I attended one of my uni mate's wedding tonight and it certainly felt weird knowing that your peers are slowly getting hitched. One by one. Like in a marching line.

Her 2nd wedding dinner (I missed the first one last week) was held at Selayang Palace. It was such a challenge finding the place. Four cars including mine got lost, overshot the turning and had to make 2 U-turns. I made a few more prior to that. But I must say, the food there was really good. 
The first dish: 2 dishes of scallops, some fried thingy, lobster meat (I think) and fruits in thousand island sauce
The beautiful bride, Wooi Teng and her lucky husband.

So tired.. I haven't had a proper rest even though we just started the week from a long weekend. Gonna go crash now.

Good night all! Have a great June!

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Thursday, May 27, 2010

Album and Pretty Hair

Two weekends ago, Igemz launched our 2nd album titled Rainbow of Blessings. We sang, we danced, we cried, ok I cried, we laughed, we autographed, we ate...

Igemz & my parents
With our very talented and loving producer :p
Fans of the boys? Haha. Ironic that there weren't any girls in the line up, sitting and standing.
Proud parents of the 'Chia-Sisters'

And last Sunday, we had a good write up by Christina Low, a Star writer. Click on the link to read it if you're interested. :) Rainbow of Blessings Article

Everytime I go for a hair wash, I try to stick to the same salon unless I am not nearby. To be honest, I am not very loyal with stylists. There, my dark secret is out. It's true that I am not very good at keeping to the same stylist. Same as talking during my hair time when I just want to be in my own bubble enjoying that me time. Although I am getting better now with this guy whom I feel more at ease with his scissorhand on my hair and with holding conversations with him.

Anyway, I've yet to find someone who can give me the curls I want, but I found someone else who can blow the curls that I want perfectly! Right down to the twirl at the end of my fringe.
But i doubt I'll see him again for my next blow. He's just too far in town for me to endure the jam for. But he'll definitely be my to go guy when I'm there.

See the top I'm wearing, that was my first time wearing it and during the wash, the colour from its lace came off. Now my beautiful white top is ruined with black stains. Boo! I get to have pretty hair and ruin my pretty top. A girl can't get everything can she.

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Monday, May 24, 2010

Food Talk in Saigon

I am back from Saigon. Yummy yummy Saigon. Although I was not able to tour around this trip to visit the underground tunnel where the people hid and live during the war (apparently, it's just like a city below) and many other attractions, I have had the pleasure of satisfying my palette.

Pictures paint a thousand words, so lets have the pictures do the talking.

The hotel I stayed in was a 1 star boutique hotel, but I must say it has 5 star service. Every morning, I get room service breakfast. Nice way to start the morning. 

Continental breakfast & Vietnamese Pho Er

On the 2nd day, we had a barbecue pork rice for lunch. It looks simple and plain, but trust me, it tasted wonderful! Sweet and salty with the smokey barbecue taste.
The same place serves one of the best homemade yoghurt. So of course, nothing that is labeled 'best' goes untried right?

That night after our meeting, we all adjourned for team dinner at a Czech Republic Beer Hauz. One of the first Czech eatery and brewery in Vietnam and also where the Czech Republic Consulate is now based.
Bacon wrapped something. Memory of a fish, I don't remember!
Some barbecued fish & Pork knuckles with mash potatoes (if you're a potato lover, you'll love this mash potatoes)
Salmon Roe, Pate, butter and some leaves.

No pictures of food for the third day but I went to a chain restaurant called "Wrap & Roll" where you are required to wrap and roll your own Vietnamese springroll. What interest me was how they take such a simple and traditional food and turned it into a contemporary food concept together with the design of the restaurant itself.

On my last day, my journey of interesting food continues. We went to this place at some back lane at Binh Thanh market and tried some Central Vietnam dishes.
Shrimp + some rice paste + fish sauce + something else | The wanton looking thingy is similar. :)
Some traditional sweet pastry - glutinous-y sweet paste with coconut. I'm not sure what the rest were because we didn't have any space left in our stomachs for them. 

Other things that are interesting in Saigon:
Which side of the road are we in?
RM24 for a pedicure + nail art. This is considered one of the more high end prices. 
Clotheless kids playing with boxes by the streets. 

But after all these, I must say that I couldn't surpress that grin on my face when I felt the wheels of my plane landing on the LCCT runway. One week abroad alone is enough to make me feel all excited to be home where I can share my experiences with people who matters to me.

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Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Good Morning Vietnam!

Honks blaring, pedestrians walks like the king, motorist zig zagging past every empty space they can get through - Yes, I am back in Vietnam! This time, in Saigon.

Ever since touching down this morning, I have been trying to find some distinction between Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh but every where I look, shops, roads and people looks the same. Sitting in the driver driven Innova, I catch myself going back to the times when Dad was still in Hanoi.

My bird's eye view. Acres after acres of agriculture, boosted by their vast natural resources.

This is what the city looks like. Actually, these are the clustered districts in Ho Chi Minh City. Every building looks the name and there's no practice of organized township development.

I have been to meetings after meetings ever since I got there. One thing I have been looking forward to is Vietnamese food. Just like China where the styles of cooking vary according to the different clans and  provinces, the tastes of Vietnam is divided into 3 regions - North, Middle and South. The north have more of a salty taste bud, the Middle - spicy and the South have very sweet tooth.

I particularly loved the food in Hanoi because it was salty and full of taste! Needless to say, it was also quite bad for cholesterol. :) That goes to say good food are usually bad for you. I digress. Today I have tried my first 2 meals in HCM and I must say, it tasted similar!

This was peculiar to me because I had braced myself for the blast of sweetness in every dish, but all I got was the same kind of sauce and saltiness. So I brought this up and was told that actually, I am currently dining at local-tourists joints thus the dishes are tailored towards a more standardized taste. Ahh no wonder!

Give it a few more days. Hopefully, I am able to try some authentic southern dishes that will blow my heart out from the sweetness. Hehe.

On another sad note: No facebook here! Apparently it is blocked here by certain service providers. Anyone know how I can get around it with a proxy? 


Thursday, May 13, 2010

Rainbow of Blessings

Today was definitely one of the bad days. There was just too many things going on at the same time that I felt so suffocated. No breathing space at all. No matter, I keep telling myself that it will all be over soon, it's just a few more months. Hopefully.

On a brighter note, we are now gearing up towards the launch of Igemz's 2nd album! Yes, the long awaited album is finally here! We were very lucky to have many kind people around us, Datuk, Greg, Igemz, Pevin, Bugs, Mun Yee, Mei Joon, Aaron and more that I may have missed out, without whom, this 2nd album and its launch this Saturday will not be a reality.

 It felt just like last week when I put on these headphones to start recording.

What do I feel? I suppose a sense of relief and accomplishment. After all that we have put in to ensure the success of this album, it is now finally out in the public (ok not until Saturday) for your support!

I managed to get my hands on the first few copies that we fresh out of the printing oven. And what can I say, I am so proud of us. :) 
All artwork in the album is done by my talented sister, Sue Ann and colouring done by Daniel.

All the songs in the album are inspirational songs with the essence of friendship, appreciation of everyone and everything around you, the beauty of this life and Buddhist messages - with contemporary tunes all produced, arranged, mixed and engineered by Greg Henderson. Good stuff yo.
Group shot after we finished recording one of the tough group songs.

If you're interested in getting your hands on one, then do visit your nearest Buddhist associations / centres / temples for a copy. They should be carrying it. After this Saturday.

As for me, what I will do now put this CD on play and hopefully it will calm me from a bad day, set me into a peaceful state of mind ready for snoozeland.

Good night!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

To light the night, to help us grow

I read this on facebook and thought this to be quite meaningful.

This is used as a message for domestic violence but I feel that it should not only be targeted towards men. Everyone who has loved ones should always remember to appreciate them, respect them, and treat them right. If you do not want to lose them, then do not do things to push them away.

After all, you will be the one who gets burned in the end.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Hair woes

This post is about something very pressing. One that has been bogging my mind for quite some time. Although it may be narcissistic but it's for the releasing of those pressing thoughts.   

After a year of trying to grow my shoulder length hair long into mermaid-esque tresses, they have finally reached a decent level of being just below my lungs.

Now, I am not one to metamorphose into a different person with different hair every week. But I do like making changes, though not very drastic ones to my outlook.

2 years ago, I looked like this

That was the first time I had chopped my hair off to a length that was above my shoulders in 3 years. Yes. I'm not very adventurous I know.

1 year ago
A little longer and with fringe.

Tada! Longer mermaid-esque tresses has now arrived!

I have been contemplating on curling my hair permanently but this would be the first time in my life that I would have taken that step.

So off I went to scout and consult trusted stylists and stylists that looked like they could be trusted - if they could give me the curls I want. They all said, no. They don't such machines here yet. Overseas yes, but not here. Their unanimous answers crushed my hopes and dampened my spirit.

However, they have been very kind to me telling me to go back and blow my hair into curls if that is the desired look I want. That is what I've been doing weekly, as a ritual during weekends. To destress myself by getting a hair wash and beautiful curls.

Le sigh beautiful curls. I am going to shamelessly ask again, as I have before, does anyone know how this can be achieved permanently?

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