Holidays!

Posted in Australia, Food, photography by Sandra on January 16, 2010

Since this is the BF’s first real holiday in two years, we decided to go somewhere further rather than just our local beach. Our destination was Cabarita Beach, about 100km south of Brisbane, where the BF’s family (well, one branch of it) were holidaying at roughly the same time. We made the drive up in about 3 or 4 days from Melbourne – the BF had to do all the driving – and arrived there on 2 Jan 2010. We left on 10 Jan 2010 and arrived 13 Jan 2010 – did the drive of 10 hours from Sydney to Melbourne in a day waking up at 5am!

There were a lot of beaches involved on the way to Cabarita and while we were in the general vicinity of Brisbane. Hopefully the pictures do enough justice as to just how beautiful they were – my favourite one was Hastings Point. The waters were significantly warmer than Melbourne’s and therefore that much more enjoyable – i.e., no shock freeze upon entering the water. The weather was cloudy for a few days after we arrived in Cabarita itself, but that was fine since the sun was so savage that I am now as brown as a coolie.

I plowed through six books while I was there, went body-boarding (now that was fun!), and we started watching Burn Notice. We also got to know this particular branch of the BF’s family tree a lot better (long story, complicated and too much trouble to explain really) and we had dinner as a family almost every night. Eight people, now that’s a crowd!

We’re going to get back to work on Monday – not looking forward to it at all. :(

Us, somewhere between Melbourne and Lakes Entrance

Us, somewhere on a beach between Melbourne and Lakes Entrance

Above-mentioned beach, without me for a better view

Ship on the Sea - Look at those colours...

Me on Windang Beach

Yamba, Morning of 2 Jan 2010

Surfers Paradise - 4 Jan 2010

Me on Cabarita Beach - 5 Jan 2010

Posing against Cabarita Beach - 5 Jan 2010

Cabarita Beach

Hastings Point was a little inlet which got to about waist height as we waded in. It’s protected by the embrace of rock formations at the point, which meant that the waves broke early on the rocks and as a result, the water in the inlet itself was really calm. There were even little whiting (a type of fish) in the water swimming curiously all around you! It was amazing – we felt so close to nature, I could hit my ToL hotkey (Shift+T) and rest in peace there. (WoW moment over :P)

Hastings Point with the BF and his cousin - 8 Jan 2010

Hastings Point

Hastings Point

Me at Hastings Point

Us at Hastings Point

There is one Sushi Tei in Australia, and its in Sydney. Whenever we pass through Sydney we make a point of visiting Sushi Tei (which is something we started last year) and this year was no different. However, this year’s visit – we went with the BF’s dad and his wife – was rather disappointing.

Salmon Sashimi

Slices were half as thick as any other salmon sashimi I’ve had in all the Sushi Teis combined (Aus last year and Singapore)

Salmon Belly Soup... though in hindsight I should've moved the vegs to the side.

Ebi Mentaiyaki

This prawn dish was the most shocking of all for me. The prawn flesh stuck to the shell and removing it was a four lettered challenge, while the entire thing looked warped –

Ebi Mentaiyaki looked disfigured this year.

Definitely a far cry from the previous visits to Sushi Tei International (10++ visits?). Look at the difference with the picture below (snitched from Google Images and therefore someone’s blog probably):

Ebi Mentaiyaki as it should be

Ebi Mentaiyaki as it should be

Absolutely shocking.

Perhaps I should start planning for a visit to Singapore for our next holiday for one day just to have good dishes again.

Oh wait, there’re outlets in Bali!

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Gunnamatta Beach

Posted in Australia by Sandra on July 20, 2009
Gunamatta Beach

A Cloudy Day at Gunnamatta Beach

We went to Gunnamatta Beach on Sunday. The weather forecast was gloomy – rain was to be expected. Nonetheless, we set off at one in the afternoon, our hopes buoyed by the brightness and clarity of the skies above. It was a 78.1km drive — about 1 hour and 17 minutes, by the Eastlink from home.

On the way there, the boys were very excited… and Zac was visibly upset by the sudden long drive, quite literally. He threw up on the backseat… Thank goodness we had used an old bedsheet to cover the backseat best as we could.

Duckie and the Boys at Gunnamatta Beach

The BF and the Boys

The beach itself was hiding over a high sandy dune which separated the beach from the carpark. The sand was fine, and impossibly clean… I don’t think I saw a shred of trash on the beach. The winds were very strong (as you can see in the picture, my hair’s all over my face… Wish I had taken the time to just tie my hair up!) and the waves did what they did best: crash upon the shore and scare the wits out of the boys. There were a few people around, some with fishing rods stuck upright in the sand with fishing lines cast out.

Gunnamatta Beach

Strike a Pose, Dion!

Gunnamatta Beach

Fishing at Gunnamatta Beach

I got wet up to my knees and just decided to go into the water with one boy at a time and get them to get used to the water. In our excitement, the Boyfriend and I neglected to take pictures of Zac’s first “swim”… Argh!!! The water was freezing – I thought my blood was actually solidifying in my veins as I hopped in and out of the waves.

Then, we got the idea to use their new favourite toy (a blue rubber squeaky ball). Well, the Boyfriend did – he tossed it a good way out to the sea and I shouted at him for a good few minutes before he told me to shut up and relax because the waves will eventually bring the ball back to shore – WELL I DIDN’T KNOW THAT DID I! I grew up in Singapore! Hmph.

Dion was truly a “fail”-dog. When the tide receded, he’d venture close to the ball. Once he was just a step away from being able to stretch enough and get the ball but the wave came in then and he ran like a faildog. He jumped and tried to get away at the faintest hint of the smallest swell in the tide. It was incredible. We can’t believe we raised such a timid dog.

So much for those “big dog” howls.

Zac did far better. The only thing he recoiled from were the salty taste of the sea water for the first time or two, and actual waves that crashed on him. He wasn’t a coward at all, and he was the more “beagly” of the two in this regard – utterly focused on the task at hand.

Gunnamatta Beach

Notice the Fine Sea-spray Over the Swell?

It was a good day. :)

Sleepy Dog: Zac

Sleepy Zac

Sleepy Dog: Dion

Sleepy Dion

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Morning in the Backyard

Posted in photography by Sandra on May 19, 2009

Spent a good bit of yesterday morning sitting in the backyard (on a piece of cardboard so I don’t get my clothes dirty) and took about a hundred pictures. That’s one of the major drawbacks about posting pictures for me – I’ve taken so many, have to filter through all of them, edit them as necessary, resize them, upload them. Such a PITA, but for you, dear reader, I shall do that.

Just as I got up to get the camera after some time sitting in the sun, the Murloc came out to join me for a bit. His exact words were, ‘Don’t think I didn’t notice a sun-spotting kitten!’ :)

Part A: Car

Posted in photography by Sandra on May 14, 2009

Well, the great PY has commanded me to brrrrog and here I am, brrrogging for your entertainment (as if she herself blogs enough to entertain me!)

Two major things have happened since my last blog.

a) We picked up a new car.

b) We moved into a new place.

Our first night here was on Saturday night, and I’ve been taking my time unpacking since then. But since it’s too cold out for me to go and take pictures of the house from the outside, I shall show you the new car we traded the fucking whingey Italian mistress (that’s the Alfa for you non-car people) for.

It’s a BMW 320i. (Link brings you to official BMW page.)

BMW in Driveway

bmwfront

bmwfrontside

bmwbackside

Dig it, baby ;). It’s spacious, smooth, such a fucking good ride. Every time we go somewhere in that car I feel like I should be wearing my LBD, Lucieno heels and subtle, classy bling.

That’s an oxymoron isn’t it? Subtle, classy bling…

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Day 1 and 2

Posted in Singapore by Sandra on April 16, 2009

THIS IS A VERY LONG POST WARNING.

Well, today is my second day (2.5th to be exact) in Singapore. My body has adjusted a little better to the weather, and by that I mean I don’t perspire at night any more. During the day, however, I still get roasted in my clothes.

Day 0.5: flight to SG
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(The two pictures above are flying over the a desert in the center of Australia… It isn’t soft sand we see here; it’s thick, sun-baked mud!)

Day 1
Tuesday was spent mostly with Libei. We went shopping for jeans, and came away from our 5 hour hunt at Bugis Street and Peninsula Plaza Far East Plaza with two jeans each. We got lost (looking for Bugis Street), we got tired (of walking), and we – okay, I – mixed up Far East Plaza with Peninsula Plaza for some reason. Our final stop was at a smallish shop called “Ever’ley” at Far East Plaza. The lady was very professional and even gave us tips on how to slim our thighs down (prop your legs up against a wall so your weight “shifts” up/down to your upper body instead of pooling in your legs…). When we were there, Sandy Pah was there. Libei had to alter both her jeans, one for length and the other for a smaller waist (lucky girl?), and it was $5 for each alteration… The alterations were practically invisible, and one wouldn’t have guessed it’s been altered! They were done within 30 minutes, too.

EVER’ LEY
14 Scotts Road #04-129
Far East Plaza
Singapore 229213
TEL: 6738 1855
Open Daily: 1pm – 9pm
Closed on Sundays & Public Holidays

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Dinner was at Marine Parade, tom yum steamboat at Mini Steamboat!
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I forgot to take pictures of food.. Ugh! It was good though, I had the beef set with golden mushrooms and fish paste. Yum yum yum!

Day 2
I was supposed to meet Peiya today for a spot of dinner this evening, but she cancelled on me because she decided to go off to Hong Kong only two days ago. Tsk, tsk! Instead, I went to Razan’s and spent 3 hours with her and even ended up cam-whoring with her… I showed her a video or two of The Murloc playing with Dion, and her painfully accurate conclusion was that our lovely Dion is a slow-response creature of great cuteness.

I would post the images of the camwhoring if she didn’t look like she just climbed out of bed. Oh wait, she did!

After that I went off and met Leo, for a bit of photography at Punggol End. It wasn’t quite the Punggol End I knew anymore…

The beach was “shortened”, so as to speak. I’m not sure if the developed land crept closer to the waters, or the water levels were raised. There was much undergrowth, huger flies, and no sand to walk on. I didn’t think it was safe/wise to rely on the rocks on the beach to get down onto the sand and back up (largely due to the heat I was melting from), and as a result I didn’t have as many pictures as I’d like to take.

I was, and still am, shocked by the drastic change in landscape of this area… It used to be so undeveloped apart from the private houses and Outward Bound school there. Leo also told me that there’s a restaurant here now, deep within the woods, where no doubt they’ve cleared out probably two-thirds of the trees just to build it.

Pictures will come in a separate entry, as I did take more than 5 pictures…

Dinner was at Bedok Blk 511 hawker centre, BBQ stingray and sa guo fan (how does one write that in Chinese…?), and now I seem to be developing a bit of a sore throat from accidentally breathing the chemical waters of the condo’s swimming pool. I’m exhausted! and so I shall roll off to bed.

I miss my boys and my murloc… /cry~

to the rest of you, good night!