Friday, June 25, 2010

Bring on the Colors

Summer is here, but you would never know it.  The weather today is pretty much the same as yesterday, same as last week, last month, even six months ago :).  But I've gotten a kick of color in me on my recent shopping sprees.  Here are some of my fun new purchases.
Okay, so this looks a bit muumuu-esque, but I was drawn to the colors and design. 
If nothing else, it is a perfect swimsuit cover-up.
Fun new pants - also best for beach vacations I think :).  I thought at first they were grapes, but nope, little purple, dark blue and light blue flowers.  High, fitted waist, but long, wide legs.  They are so light-weight and comfy!

And of course I need some accessories.  I have always been against big purses, but in Singapore I need bags to carry my things.  I don't have a passenger side seat or trunk (aka "boot" here) to throw them in. 

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

At the Movies

My moving watching experiences are definitely a little different here in Singapore.  At home in the U.S., I did not go to the movies very often.  I was protesting the cost for the comfort you get at the theater v. the amount to rent/buy and watch at home.  I don't really enjoy sharing my movies with a whole lot of other people, my Dad rubbed off in me that way ("Shhh!").  My favorite is to get the bargain, previously-viewed DVDs at Blockbuster (3 for $20 deals).  If I watch it twice, it's basically covered the cost.

In Singapore, I have yet to see evidence of a market for DVD rentals.  Also, my DVD player is from the U.S. to play my 200-odd DVDs from home.  In Singapore, the technology is programmed a little different so that cross-country DVDs are not compatible with certain players.  But there's also not a Blockbuster everywhere.  I've concluded this is due to two facts: 1) Pirated DVDs seem to abound in Asia if you know where to look, which is very cost effective and 2) I get the feeling everyone likes to spend time outside the house for free aircon, socialization, etc. 

That said, my movie habits have changed.....somewhat.  I still don't want to share my movies with a full theater and go to some great lengths to ensure this is maintained.  When I want to see a movie, I go through the following thought process:
1) There are two main cinema chains I visit.  Check #1 for movies starting before noon.
2) Do I like any of them?
3) Is it opening week? If not, less likely to be crowded.
4) What are they rated? (An R or NC17 equivalent will have less people, no kids, at the shows before noon.)
5) Okay, let's click on one and check it out.  I get to see the seating plan and see which seats are taken.
6) How full is the theater so far? Hopefully 25% or less. 
7) Go to cinema chain #2 and see what the comparable options are. 
8) Decide which movie and theater I want. 
9) Pick my seat (usually J2/H2 - one in from the far side aisle which means unlikely to have company nearby).
10) Check out for about S$10, which is maybe US$7-ish. 
11) Usually I do this all the morning of the show, so now it's time to shower, catch the bus, pick up my ticket at the window and find my reserved seat.

The concessions aren't so hot - no candy and I don't like popcorn.  That's okay though, I don't usually have munchies.  Most of the theaters I've been in are good - seats are permanently down so they aren't flipping up every time you stand. Very expedient to get to your show with the pre-pay online option.  More foreign language films available to me here.  Most of the U.S. movies are released here as well - some at the same time, some a month or two later. 

It's a good way to get me out of my pj's on Sat/Sun morning :).  I do enjoy going to the movies by myself here.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Lunch Buddy

I went to make some lunch today and was rinsing something off under the faucet when I saw a movement out of the corner of my eye.  AHH! I looked down and I had a friendly critter in a glass I'd left in the sink.  Maybe he liked the mini pool which had accumulated from splashes of water from the faucet? Freaked me out at first - but he just remained. 

The gecko is resident in my kitchen and generally harmless.  But every once in a while he freaks me out by surprising me and shooting across the counter or something.  Today was a good freak out.  I hope he is done chillin' in the kitchen sink soon and makes his way out. 

Friday, June 4, 2010

Laundry man!

How often do you have a $100 bill laying around or burning a hole in your pocket?  The stars were aligned for me is all I can say. 

With no car here, figuring out how to get my work clothes dry cleaned has been an item on the "to-do" list for a while.  I tend to stock pile and then clean all at once (procrastination is the story of my life).  Carrying a load of clothes from my car in Peoria to the apartment was bad enough, but carting them on the bus or train or paying cab fare?

Finally, I received a flyer in the mail, called the number and this past Monday at 8:30pm a guy came to pick up my 24 articles of clothing :).  I remembered to ask what payment method he accepted - cash when the clean clothes are returned.  It was a hefty amount compared to the cash I usually keep on hand and I made a mental note to get cash during the week. 

Well....the mental note failed and I completely forgot.  But someone loves me.  Thursday I went to get cash because I was getting low.  Not even thinking about my bill due Friday night.  Usually I always pull out S$90.  They don't have $20 bills here; $10's and $50's.  So $90 helps break it up and I'm not stuck with two $50's.  The machine wouldn't give me $90, so instead of just getting $100 like I usually would, I decided to go for $150 so I got at least one $50 bill.  You guessed it, one $50 bill and one $100 bill.  Very odd to hold that.  It got zipped up in my purse side pocket so as not to get lost.

Then comes Friday after a very long week of work.  I'm cleaning the apartment thinking this delivery man will need to carry in my clothes.  Then I realize, crap! I need to have $108 to foot my bill.

Wait a minute....I have $108!!! :D Happy day.  I never have that much cash.  What luck that I had it today.  This is good karma.  Here's what S$108 of dry cleaning buys you.  Actually I thought it was a pretty good deal considering I got door to door service. 

Have a great weekend!