Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas Day+

On Christmas we went to a village to see original Balinese, the Bali Aga. They are a small group, maybe 300 families and had some handicrafts for sale. One lady was really nice and explained some of the history to us. I bought a fun new scarf from her for next winter.

We headed to a nearby bay from there where our driver helped us find a snorkeling crew and lunch. The restaurant made all the arrangements and as always were super nice. For around $15 each we rented gear and went out for two hours. We were skeptical at first because no one else was there, but once under the water it was great and we had it all to ourselves!! I tried out my new underwater camera (thanks Mom!) and hopefully got some good pics of the colorful fish. We even belted out some Christmas carols while out there. Pretty sure our boat captain thought we were nuts.

We came back just before the rain. Perfect weather again!! No strenuous evening activities and we headed to bed around 8:30/9 as we had a wake up call for 2:30am. Yep, we were going to trek up a volcano (Mt. Batur) at night to see the sunrise.

The alarm went off and we headed out. We were with a nice Canadian family of three, including their 11-year old. I just wanted to do as well or better than him. Failed :). But, we did not miss the sunrise even with my slow self. It was cloudy, but the clouds blew in and out so we got some good views when we were patient. The guide was great and cooked us breakfast, hard boiled eggs and cooked bananas, from the steam of a volcano hot-spot. It was super hot! We headed down and were back around 10:30 for the Bears/Packers debacle poolside. Then we headed to town, Ubud, for lunch, shopping and dinner. It was a long day and we were knackered! Another early night to bed. Awoke at 2am to a downpour. So happy we went trekking the day before. Weather thwarted again!!

This morning we walked to a nearby hotel for a western breakfast. Then we pack up at noon and start the trip back to Singapore. A lovely holiday that anyone should make should they find themselves in Asia or planning a trip.

More pics to come, but I did take these two with my iPad (so not sure on quality): the rice paddies next door and the pool at our villa.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Eve

I got to Bali yesterday with a friend and today we went for a beautiful bike ride through the small villages and rice paddies. We saw them harvesting rice, got a tour of a local Balinese home and coasted most of our 25km. I almost got lost once when I missed a turn, but the guide ran me down (yeah I wasn't going too fast). Then my camera flew out of my pocket but luckily survived. I had some trouble with my bike gears and walked up the big hills :).

Then we came back, got some cokes and beers, jumped in the pool and now we're on break due a rainstorm passing through. Tonight is Havana Cafe for some Latin food and apparently all the waiters are practiced salsa dancers.

Definitely a fun way to spend Christmas when you can't be with family. I can't update Facebook so will try to post more here. No pics until I'm home. The iPad isn't so good with the camera or me figuring out how to transfer them here ;).

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Merry Christmas!!

Imagine that it is still light out at 7pm.  It is 80 degrees.  Your skin is slick with a nice sheen of sweat from the humid, humid air.  And in 3 days it's CHRISTMAS!!

Yeah, not so much.  It doesn't really feel like Christmas in Singapore - not the first year, not the second year (even with the addition of family) and still not in the third year.

Christmas can be crazy hectic at home, but when that's what you know, that's what you want.

All that aside, I give props to Singapore for one very special thing that is here and not anywhere to be found back home.  Two little words.....what are they?......Merry Christmas.  Why are they so special? Because everyone's saying them.  Everyone.

Today was my last day at work before taking some definitely needed days off.  I can not count how many people have wished me a Merry Christmas.  I talked to two colleagues from India today, I'm pretty sure they're not Christian.  They both, on separate calls, wished me a Merry Christmas.  It's been the same at work with people in the office or my clients.  I have no idea if they actually celebrate Christmas, but it doesn't matter.  They know (or assume) I do and they want to wish me happiness on my holiday (of course not "my" but our collective Christian holiday).  It is really nice.  No mincing words, trying not to offend.  Just simple. And then, you say it back.  Who knows if that person is doing anything different than their usual day this Sunday, but I can say it and not offend anyone because we all know the intention behind the words.

There are a bunch of great things about Singapore, but one is that they are a culturally diverse country where you don't have to tip-toe around political correctness.  Just like everyone is loving on Christmas now, we'll enjoy the Hindi, Chinese, Muslim, and other holidays as they come in 2012.

So, I leave you with, 
Merry Christmas!

Pass it on to your neighbor :).

Monday, November 28, 2011

Don't even know what to say

As with many things that I start quite enthusiastically, the newness wears off and I get distracted.  This happened with my Wii (which is now with my Mom), the Kindle (I still read it now and then, but not like I use to), my muay thai classes (haven't been since July) and this blog.

I wish I had more commitment.  What can I carry through?
  • Watching a full TV season.  
  • Using every dish available until they are all dirty and require a dish washer (aka my hands).  
  • Eating every piece of sugar in the house (e.g. jelly, dried mangoes, kool-aid, etc.) before I have to go grocery shopping. 
  • Leaving my mail to stack up in the box until I know I need something in there like an overdue bill or package from my mom.

So, basically I'm a lazy bum :).  I realise my blog has been failing of late.  I have lots of excuses but the reality is I could make an hour once a week if I really made the effort.  We will see if I can get back in a routine because I really do think I'll enjoy looking back at this when I'm no longer here.

Here are some fireworks from Seoul, South Korea.  Yeah.....I still have a lot to catch you up on since August.





Saturday, October 1, 2011

Hit Girl!

If you have seen Kick-Ass, you might recall the young Hit Girl.  If not, I recommend putting it on your rental list. Even with Nicolas Cage, it was still a good movie.

We had our annual work Dinner and Dance with the theme of "Heroes".  Now, yes, a hero can be a police officer, fireman, doctor....but are those any fun?? No, only superheroes (and villains, but that wasn't an option).  However look for any female superheroes and all you find is skimpy spandex.  That was not going to work for this female.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Pics from Home

My travel has been adjusted slightly over these few months, but I did make it back home for a long Labor Day weekend and then on to Orlando for a work conference.  It had been about a year since I'd been back to the States.  I got to see a few family and friends.  Looking forward to the longer trip in October when I'll get to see more.  If you're around the week before Halloween and want to get together, let me know!

Here are some pics from the trip (follow the link for more):

Beautiful, clear skies and an open, unoccupied road.  Amazing.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Around the World in 80 Days

Hard to believe but in a couple of weeks I'll begin year 3 of my three year assignment here in Singapore.  While I haven't taken near enough advantage of my prime travel location in Asia, it seems like that will certainly happen the next few months.  

July was Thailand and getting caught up on some work.  August started with a long weekend in Vietnam thanks to the Singapore National Holiday.  I've included some pics below, but again, a fellow blogger beat me to it.  I went with a new friend from the U.S., Stephanie.  She posted a really good summary of our trip on her blog. Then I started a work trip to India (3 days), China (week) and Australia (3 days).  I write to you know on my layover in Bangkok waiting to head to Beijing.  Then I'm back to Singapore for a week or two before heading to the U.S. for Labor Day.  I have a work conference to attend and will use that to kick off another work trip through Europe (most likely Germany, UK and Spain).  Back to Singapore for a week and a half, then to Korea for some work and some fun with friends from the U.S.  Back to work in Singapore for a week (unless I can get away with my friends for a couple days to Bali ;)!), then to Indonesia for work meetings and finally to the U.S. for my home leave.  My last trip to the U.S. was October 2010, so it'll be good to get home.  We have a family wedding that I'm really looking forward to and some 30th birthdays to celebrate....not to mention Halloween :).

It'll be a busy time until November.  Will try to keep updated, but as my track record lately proves, my good intentions do not always come through.  

Hope everyone back home is enjoying their summer and hopefully I'll get to see most of you during one of my trips in Sept/Oct!

Some more pics from Vietnam......

Friday, July 15, 2011

Beerfest and no beer?

Sorry - I've been going chronologically backwards for these last few posts. In June, someone made me aware of Beerfest here in Singapore.  I think it was like the 2nd or 3rd annual one.  

Now many of you will be wondering why I, a non-beer drinker, even considered going to Beerfest.  Well, it sounded fun, good company and someone assured me there would be some other options besides beer.  So why not??

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Bali, Again

What can I say, I can't get enough of Bali.  I think it's my new favorite place.  A few weekends ago I went for my third time.  The first couple times were on my own for some R&R.  I think I read a combined 8 books in those six days.  This time we had a group of seven of us and we decided on an all-inclusive resort. A group of 5 of us took full advantage of the free-flow drinks.  (Note: Free flow here is the equivalent of open bar.)  I only read about 2-3 chapters this time :).

The all-inclusive was nice, but definitely made you not want to leave the resort so you got your full money's worth!  It was a short weekend trip anyway, so I was happy to stay at the resort and skip on sight-seeing tours.  We did see a wedding Saturday afternoon.  I think it was the lamest wedding ever - no dancing, half the people gone by like 9pm.  Also pretty sure it was shotgun - a baby bump was seen on the bride.

Follow the link and see a few pictures from the weekend:

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

4th of July in Asia

For the 4th of July week, I had some great friends from the U.S. visit, Mark & Nicole. Mark and I met during a summer internship back in 2002 (neither of our current jobs) and have stayed in touch since.  He worked in Varese, Italy (north of Milan near Switzerland) for two years and I had visited him and ran around Italy for a couple of weeks then. It was a great time and I was more than happy to return the favor as tour guide.

I showed them around Singapore and then we spent a few days in Thailand.  I don't think I could do as good a job as Nicole did on her blog recapping their visit.  So, I'm going to be a little lazy and refer you there ;) - links below.


I do have a fun video and some personal pics to add - follow the jump (link)!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Where did June go?

I'm not sure what happened, but we're already 10 days into July and I never even posted in June.  The month flew by!  What was I doing??

- I had some friends leaving town - so good-bye dinners and drinks were in order.
- Beerfest came around and this non-beer drinking girl attended and had a great time.
- Broke my washing machine somehow.
- I worked doggedly to try and meet some key work deadlines around mid-month.
- I prepared to take off the last two weeks of June to a) clear vacation before our fiscal year-end of 30 June and b) to host friends from the U.S.
- Watched a few movies received for my birthday.
- Flew to Bali, Indonesia for a weekend with friends.
- Attended a few more fitness classes of Muay Thai.
- Received my Singapore tax bill and had a lot of recomputing and number checking to do :).
- Was tour guide in Singapore to my visiting friends from the U.S., Mark & Nicole.
- Then, we went to Thailand on the 4th of July where we could all play tourist :).

Those were my major activities and I'm sure there were plenty of minor activities to accompany these.  I was busy and when it takes usually at least an hour for me to piece together a post....I get a little lazy :).  Sorry!

I will try to post some pics from the last month soon.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Myanmar or Burma??


First off, 
Happy Memorial Day! 
to my fellow Americans back home and around the world.  
It's a great day to remember those who served our country and are no longer with us.  


This past weekend, I had a quick weekend trip to Yangon, Myanmar (aka Burma), the former capital city.  Myanmar has most recently been in the news for the cyclone that hit in 2008 causing massive damage and the ineffective, slow response of the Myanmar government to help its people in their time of need.  While I don't have all the details, I've heard nothing to dispute that statement.  It's west of Thailand and was about a 3hr flight from Singapore.

It was a quick, fun trip.  Will try to share some more photos and fun stories later in the week (which may turn into the weekend).

Fruit stands on our walk to the major market



Sunday, May 22, 2011

Memories from the World

I got my passport what seems like long, long ago - way back in 2002 :).  Passports are generally good for 10 years, and 7 January 2012 has been my closely approaching expiration date.  In Asia, you can't go many places with less than 6 months to go on your passport, so time to get a new one.

This past week, I went to our U.S. embassy in Singapore.  My expectations were low.  I figured it would be an international DMV with security and my day would be sucked up.  I can very happily report that my experience was the complete opposite.  I arrived at 11:30, half an hour before closing time, and was out in 20 minutes or less.  I even had to get a picture in that amount of time.

The U.S. Embassy.  Snapped right before I saw the "no pics" sign :).  Not the prettiest of buildings.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Shakespeare in the Park

The Singapore Repertory Theater is/was putting on Macbeth at Fort Canning Park here in Singapore.  It's been since high school since I did anything Shakespeare related and needless to say, I haven't missed it a bit ;).
from the Singapore Repertory Theater website

That said, I had some intel from others who went last week that you did not need to be a Shakespeare lover to enjoy the performance.  So upon an invite from a co-worker, I gladly accepted.  I picked up sandwiches and some fruit for dessert.

Monday, May 16, 2011

What to do after 30 years?!

A 30th birthday is a big milestone and it seems it gets everyone thinking about doing something they haven't yet done.  Skydiving is a big one, which would go along with bungee jumping. Both are pretty high and I don't know that I'm really up for that.  I've heard 30 countries by 30...I got to 20, so no-go there.  Maybe a tattoo? Yeah, I'm too indecisive for such a permanent item.

I finally decided on something that will be more of an on-going project rather than a one-and-done. There's a little corner inside myself where there's always been this little fighter.  She's peeked her head a few times during my first 30 years on this earth, but honestly not very often.  And while I've day dreamed about getting into a knock-down drag out fight, the truth is that I'm too worried about getting my own butt kicked to actually make a move or provoke anyone.

Taken from Hilltop The Gym website

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Very Superstitious??

Having a birthday on the 13th means every once in a while it falls on Friday the 13th, which it did this year.  The last one I remember on a Friday was my golden birthday (i.e. my 13th birthday - double whammy).  Both turned out well :).

I've never met anyone with my exact birthday before, but this year there happen to be two Australians on short-term assignment at work with me, both with May 13th birthdays!  We decided to do a group outing of dinner and drinks Thursday and went to a bar, Altitude, which is an open air bar at the top of one of the high rises downtown (about 60+ stories up).  It was my first time there and a good time was had by all.

After-dinner birthday cake for the three of us.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Bug Buddy

 Good Morning! On my way out the door this morning, I was greeted at the gate by this rather large insect.  About as big as my thumb maybe?  Never seen one before.  S/He didn't scuttle off like a nasty roach.  So I went on my way and figured s/he would as well.

Then I came home many hours later and s/he apparently loves it at my place.  Looked like there was no movement.  Of course it is alive - it moved slightly.

What is it? Will it be there in the morning? I have no idea.  But if it isn't scurrying across my body, flying into my hair, making loud noises or stinking up the place, I think I'm okay to just let s/he stay right wherever they like.


**Prize to anyone who can tell me what this bug is and if it needs to be killed/shooed away :).

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Labor Day BBQ

Yep, it's Labor Day and what is Labor Day without a cookout??  Here Labor Day is 1 May, so we got Monday off.  With some impromptu planning on Sunday, we were able to reserve a BBQ pit at my condo and send out some text invites.  I went out shopping for meat, came back with a boatload of stuff, but only about half what I thought I needed :).  In true family fashion, I decided to over-do things a bit.  

Friday, April 22, 2011

The Reverse Perm

In the U.S., perms are synonymous with curly hair (this has nothing to do with my last post). In Singapore, they tend to be more obsessed with straight hair.  At any salon you'll see rebonding services on the price list.  When I first saw this, I thought it was like extensions or something.  Wrong.  Rebonding is what I like to term as the reverse perm.  It's chemically straightening your hair.  No wonder Asian hair always seems so straight and nice :).

The last couple of times I've been to my hair stylist she's made comments on my hair being curly.  There is a little wave in it and I could never let it air dry without straightening it, but curly??  A couple weeks ago when I went, I got the same spiel.  I asked her to cut more layers because it gets too heavy at the bottom.  She proceeded to tell me how that wouldn't work because my hair is too curly.  So I asked what the answer was and she said I could straighten it. So I did.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Habitat for Humanity - Batam, Indonesia

Back in the U.S., my home office usually dedicated a day each June for the last few years to a local Habitat for Humanity projects.  I've learned to drywall and properly hammer a framing nail :).  It's always been a great way to do something where you can see your impact immediately.  And, very nice to get out of the office and have some physical activity.  So when a co-worker here in Singapore said she was organising a local Habitat outing, I was all for it.  It was not a work sponsored event, so we ended up with a good mix of eight of us with different backgrounds.

There's a nearby Indonesian island, Batam, where the Singapore Habitat program does daily builds, Batam Build. Otherwise they also sponsor longer trips (~1 week) to areas such as Thailand and most likely Japan here in the future.  What I quickly realised was that there would be no framing or drywall here.  Houses are made out of concrete and bricks.  Prepare for some manual labor!

Here's a re-cap of our successful day (be prepared, lots to share).  I mean, I'm crazy sore this morning, so that means success right? :)

Friday, April 8, 2011

Hairy Food

Ever get hair in your food?? on purpose!?!  :)  This is one of the most disgusting things to me.  Hair in food (or really anywhere when it's not your hair), the horrible sound of people hacking up huge snot balls and nasty feet. These are the things that make me cringe.

So then we went for Chinese New Year lunch for work.  And someone asked me if I was going to eat the hair. Hmmm??  Do you see the black goop? It's on my abalone.


Thursday, April 7, 2011

Say What?!

When you're outside the U.S. or English speaking countries, you can find lots of funny translations.  You understand what is trying to be said but it sounds so wrong :).  At breakfast one morning while travelling for work, a co-worker pointed out the following headline to me.  Did Mr. Buffett really say "retard"?


I don't have pictures of others that I've found, but a quick search on the internet brought up these priceless gems right here in Singapore.  There was actually a contest to fix them. Singapore has been known to have campaigns to improve English speaking skills because a lot of locals speak Singlish - a mix of English and some dialect of Chinese (I think).  Definitely makes it hard to eavesdrop :).

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Mudslides?

No, not the adult beverage but some awesome kiddie fun!  I went to the second weekend of Concert in the Gardens a while back and had to get a picture or two. Here's a picture of the front of the stage this time :).


It was another nice Sunday evening, but Saturday it down-poured during the afternoon and then we got some more rain Sunday morning.  Luckily a real thinker in our group (not me) brought a tarp and some extra garbage bags so our blankets didn't get all soggy.  It wasn't a mud hole, but the ground was saturated and my pants were flecked with mud from the walk over.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Minority Report

I don't remember enough about the movie to recall what the title referred to, but it came to mind as I thought about this post.

Living abroad gives you a good dose of being a minority and changes your perspective.

A white, middle-class female growing up in the U.S. is pretty standard.  I think we only had a handful of non-Caucasian students at my school (K-12) growing up.  College brought on more diversity, but more so between those who grew up in the suburbs of Chicago v. rural Illinois (and no Bloomington-Normal is not rural).  I studied abroad in Spain at an international school.  I was only there four months and I went over with other Americans.  Needless to say, while we did intermingle with locals and other foreign students, we also spent a lot of time together.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Concert in the Gardens

I forgot to take a good picture, but maybe you can use your imagination to extend the one below :).

From the back, this is the stage/amphitheater/whatever it's called.  Sunday kicked off a series of big band shows at the Botanical Gardens in Singapore.  I think this past Sunday was the Singapore Armed Forces band.  They played all sorts of songs from Disney to classical to a Lady Gaga medley.  The show was about an hour and half (I was late of course and missed the first 30 minutes).  It was really great!  A group of us from work and mutual friends from out of work got together.  The lawn in front of the theater is very open and was full of law chairs, blankets, young and old alike.  It was a great way to spend a late Sunday afternoon and we brought out some of our picnic attire.  I contributed fresh fruit (grapes, strawberries, raspberries and blueberries) and some quick and easy crab wontons from my good friend over at Prevention RD*.  Looking forward to next week's band!

*If you're ever looking for a good new recipe (and usually healthy), Prevention RD has a great Recipe Index to everything she's posted.  Always looks so good too!!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Double Take

Have I mentioned some of the odd flavors and tastes I run into here? 
Here's a couple I've come across in the grocery store that were new to me.
Too many fish flavored things here.  I like fish, but not in chip form :).

I like bananas, but to drink? really? Anyone else had banana juice??

Monday, March 7, 2011

Day 11: All good things must come to an end

The 2nd of January was everyone's last day of vacation.  We walked downtown and along the river to get in some last minute sights.  Here are some pics.

Mom & I along the river in front of the business district (CBD).

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Day 10: Exploring Singapore in 2011

We still had plenty left to do in Singapore at this point and Little India was one place I wanted to introduce my mom and brother to.  India is so different from anywhere else I've been.  At first it all feels like chaos, but once you've been in it a while, it somehow becomes order.  Or at least it no longer feels like chaos.  We did a quick walk up and down the main street, stopping by one of the larger Hindu temples.  We went to Mustafa, which is like Singapore's answer to....Wal-Mart crossed with TJMaxx.  It's got everything, but it's everywhere, with small aisles and lots of people. We needed to get out of the rain and probably spent an hour or so there.  Picked up a few items as we looked around.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Day 9: End of the Year, Baby!

We needed a rest after the action packed trip to Malaysia, so New Year's Eve was relatively quiet.  Curtis worked on some school stuff, Mom laid out at the pool reading and I was doing some internet/tv surfing as always.  I had hoped we could cook out on the pool grills for dinner, swim a little and ring in the new year pool side.  But dumb me didn't reserve a grill before-hand and they were all taken.  I actually wrote my name in for grill #7 which was open.  However, seeing as we only have 6 grill pits at the pool, not sure where that would have taken us ;).

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Day 8: Orangutans & Airports

Okay, so it was more like a sabbatical than a break, but I was just a little burned out and got super lazy.  What will I do when I have to take come of someone besides myself?? :)  Good thing that's a ways away.

Now...to remember the rest of our days of fun over the holidays.  I left off on Day 7 with some pictures of our two days in the jungle.  Before we move to Day 8, I have to tell about our way out of the park.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Break Time

I've been trying real hard to keep up this daily blogging habit.  However, it ends up happening at night after a long day, which keeps me up until all hours, wake-up to go back at it and the vicious cycle repeats.  So I'm going to take a little break and try not to make it too long because we still have several more days to cover.

I know, it doesn't seem like that much effort....but I'm a slow writer and picture poster :).  Plus, I tend to ramble.  Like this post should be about three sentences and somehow I now have three paragraphs.  This is why my "literature" credit in college was spanish literature.  There's a little bit of a break since it's another language and so isn't as intense as true English/Literature classes.  My assessment anyway.

I have updated the blog a little bit.  In particular, I added my new "What's on my Kindle?" page over to the right.   It is meant more for selfish reasons, but maybe it will inspire someone to read a new book.  Basically, I'm miserable at remembering books even a month afterwards and this is a good refresher for me.  Plus, I feel accomplished as the list grows ;).

Monday, January 10, 2011

Day 7: The Bare Necessities

Man this photo and blog editing takes a lot longer than one would think.  I will pay for it when my alarm goes off tomorrow this morning. Here's a fun video with highlights of our two days in the rain forest.  We definitely look like we're living on the bare necessities and it was only one afternoon and the following morning!

Enjoy some Jungle Book while you're at it ;).
video

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Day 6: Buses, Boats and Hiking

It's Monday now and time to get up early and head to the jungle/rain forest.  We decide to partake of the breakfast buffet at the hotel which had a big international spread and would be our last western food for the next couple of days.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Day 5: Exploring Kuching

Today we explored Kuching, after sleeping in a bit.  Tomorrow, we will head out for more exploring, so today was time to relax.
  
One of the river taxis that would scoot people across the river.  There weren't many tourist activities across the way, so we did not take one.  Probably should have....oh well :).

Friday, January 7, 2011

Day 4: Christmas Cheer!

And then it was Christmas!  Time to give rather than receive, and the gift to my visitors was a trip to Kuching, Malaysia.  I wanted to share a little bit of Asia outside of Singapore.  Because, let's face it, Singapore is like Asia-lite. :)  I say that with great love, because coming to Asia can be scary and Singapore helps newbies ease into it.  I always say, Singapore is the easiest place to move to/live in.

Borrowed from another website, here is a map to show where we went.  Singapore is in the middle to the left and Kuching is a straight shot to the east on the island of Borneo, which consists of three nations: Malaysia, Brunei and Indonesia.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Day 3: Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve was a day to chillax at the pool, get some presents, do some homework and work and go to church.  Mom and I spent the morning at the pool until our tummies (or at least mine) was growling.  Then, mom couldn't wait to "open gifts".  

Thanks for all the goodies!  Clearly I'm a junk food junkie :).  Although my mom tends to go overboard.  I asked for one bag of Butterfinger (there are none here and I was craving them after Halloween); one hunk of velveeta since it lasts forever and some of grandma's cookies.  That was it!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Day 2: Tour of Singapore

On our second day, it was time to show off Singapore the easiest way I knew how, tour bus. We picked the cheapest one, did a full loop including some off-bus detours in the business district, Chinatown and the Botanical Gardens.  The day ended with a chili crab dinner with friends and still a bit early but we should soon be done with the jet lag.

Curtis and I on one of the many bridges over the river.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Day 1: Grocery Shopping & Jet Lag

I will try to tell the story of my holiday visitors with some pictures of each day.


Me & Curtis on Orchard Road - the shopping mecca in Singapore.  It's very decorated for Christmas and all lit up at night.  We did some window shopping and people watching on the way to the grocery store.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Happy Holidays Finally End :(

Well, I am just home from the airport where I dropped Mom & Curtis (my brother) for their 24 hr journey home.  They leave here 1am Monday morning local time and arrive in Chicago at just 7:30am Monday morning CST.  This time change thing can be a doozy!


It has been a great couple of weeks (well 12 days) and while we tried to pack in as much as possible, we also needed our rest! :)  I mean it was Christmas vacation after all.  

I have lots of pics to sort through and share.  Here are some highlights.  

Beach we hiked to through the rain forest.

Mom in the rain forest.  She's a trooper!

Sunset on Kuching, Malaysia river cruise.

Inside a Buddhist temple in Singapore.

Watch out for them crocs!!

The beautiful nighttime skyline of Singapore.  Oh yeah...and I got a haircut ;).