Archive for December, 2009


Jo and HC were due to arrive today and I was so excited. But I woke up to the most horrible news that they couldn’t travel out of the country due to some visa complications.


I don’t even know how to describe how I felt. Just …


Jo’s devastation. My parents and grandparents’ immense disappointment. Poor HC. Jason and Bryan  flying in to Kuching to find just me.Poor poor poor Jo.

I know Gerry, HC and Richard were there to support her and comfort her. They’re going out to Ciao Italia to cheer her up tonight. Thanks guys, I’m really glad you guys are there in her time of need, really means a lot to me.

This holiday really isn’t turning out the way its supposed to be. The best part is being with my Ah Pa and Ah Ma everyday, but it would have been so so so so good if Jo was with us. And HC as well. I don’t know how I’ll be able to show Bryan and Jason around, I hope they won’t be too disappointed with their lone non-driving tour guide who doesn’t know her way around Kuching and has somehow lost her appetite for Kuching food.

It wasn’t such a bad day after all. I went to Kenyalang with my parents. I love Kenyalang. This is where I grew up and this is my childhood.

I met HaiJing at his button shop and bought satin ribbons in many colours for our dresses. I bought Jo a black ribbon to go with her new peach dress which I hope she will wear for our New Year’s Eve dinner.

I had a taste of Sarawak laksa and it is still delicious.

I have stopped drinking my usual Kuching drink of Teh C peng and have switched to kopi which is fragrant and sweet. I heard news that my favourite bakery Fujisan is closing down and hope to grab a ham cheem peng before the last branch goes out of business.

I saw an empty envelope and recognised my sister’s handwriting ‘did Jan send us something?’ It was the cutest card with Jan and Andy’s voice greeting, so lovely and heart warming.

I wish we were all together. But I know we will be some day. (^_^) .


When the lights go off

I have no pictures for Day 3 in Kuching because I forgot to bring my camera out *slaps forehead* Much of Day 3 was spent lying down on a chair of some sort. Early in the morning, I went to the dentist. Not the most enjoyable experience but I’m glad that my teeth got the all clear and everything is good now.

Then I had a facial in the evening, or what I call the annual ‘spring cleaning’ of my face. We’ve been going to the same dermatologist for the past 10 years and I’ve got her routine down to pat.

First there’s the Pampering session where they lull you into a sense of serenity with creamy lotions and massages. Then there’s the Steaming session where they open up your pores ready for the climax, the Torture session. The pricking, poking, scraping ‘why the hell did I sign up for self torture’ part.

My favourite part, and this applies to the dentist as well, is when she switches off the round operating light thingy with an air of finality. You know the torture session is over. You gear up for Pampering session 2 which includes the purple bacteria buzzing wand, the cold soothing creams and the spiderman web which she covers your face with. All these creams and appliances mean nothing to me but I’m sure ‘THEY ARE GOOD FOR MY SKIN’.

Then it’s all over and I totter into the sunlight, dazed and slightly giddy, with a face that resembles someone with a severe case of chicken pox.It’s all over till the next annual spring cleaning and I am relieved and glad.

The things we do for beauty.


So the phone interview is over. I’m not sure how I should feel about it, personally I think phone interviews are a disadvantage to both parties, it really helps to have a face to a name and not feel like you’re talking to dead air. The questions were easy but I don’t know how my answers went down. Ah well. What’s done is done, I should just concentrate on enjoying my holidays now.

Before my interview I shook the cue ball and asked ‘Will I get the job?’

The cueball gave a positive answer. But before that I asked ‘will I do well in the interview?’ And the cue ball said ‘My answer is no’. (T____T). So I don’t believe cue balls anymore.

My first homecooked meal always consists of vegetarian mi geng and mani chai. Ah Ma also cooked asam fish which was nice. I love eating fish in Kuching.

Something really sad happened. I went out to visit the dogs and found out that there were two new additions to our doggy household, a Great Dane and Dolberman, really big and kinda scary but I’m sure I’ll like them in time. But I found out Lobbie, our boy golden retriever died a while ago from a suspected snake bite. Goldie our girl golden retriever was bitten too but survived.

My mum didn’t dare to tell us because she was afraid we would be very upset. I was and am really really sad. We named Lobbie Lobbie because my grandmother calls all dogs Lobbie so my brother said ‘we may as well name this one Lobbie’. He was dopey, giant, smelly, silly and exuberant and really really friendly. Now there’s just Goldie who is still gentle and beautiful but has a slight melancholy air about her (or maybe that’s just me). She sits quietly when I rub her and pat her.

Dear dear Lobbie. So so sad.

Shop till you Drop

I’m back in Kuching! I haven’t had my first kolo mee yet but I did have fried kolo mee for dinner.

Singapore was really fun, the itinerary ran like this ‘ eat, shop, shop, put down shopping bags in hotel, go out again, eat, shop’.

What did I eat? Chicken rice. And I mean every single day.

I also ate Breadtalk pork floss buns. Every single night. Why can’t they have bread talk in Perth? Why?? Or really good chicken rice, or chwee kueh, or Gindako takoyaki…

Or really fresh sashimi. This sashimi was melt in the mouth good.

For my last meal in Singapore, I requested that we have old fashion kopi with kaya and butter toast and soft boiled eggs. My mum really enjoyed her kopi and said it reminded her of her childhood where her grandmother made her this for breakfast everyday. The kopi-o is as far removed from Velvet flat whites as possible, but  so fragrant and gorgeous in its own way.

It’s so nice to be back in Kuching. One of the first things I did was visit my grandparents which was so nice and yet sad in a way because they’ve grown so so old. My grandmother was delightfully predictable, saying the same things ‘mama ju lao ju eh, lu ju lai ju guang’ (grandmother gets shorter as i grow older, wheras you’re growing taller and taller). She also told me that I could afford to cut off some of my long hair because it ‘eats blood’ which is something she says every year. (^____^).

So far the holiday has been fantastic. But I have a phone interview tomorrow (T___T). The last time I had a phone interview in Kuching, last year there was a thunderstorm and the electricity went out so I had my interview in darkness. Surely it won’t go as badly this year? *fingers cross* Wish me luck ok? Because I really need it!

Ok I shall be good and try and read my notes for the interview tomorrow, goodbye and good night from Kuching!

I’m going home

So now I’m in my office, sipping on my last Velvet flat white for 2009, pretending to work and chatting to my colleagues who are pretending that they think I’m working. It’s my branch Christmas lunch this afternoon and the last day that I’ll be working with my manager and A who are both leaving the organisation. I left a jar of my cookies on my manager’s desk and she came over to give me a kiss and a card. Yesterday she stopped by my desk and gave me a parcel saying ‘these are for your grandparents’. She bought me sugar-free sweets for my grandparents knowing that my grandfather is diabetic. (T___T). I am heart broken.

 I’ve finished wrapping the Christmas presents and my hand carry is stuffed to the brim with chocolates, TimTams and macadamias. I have yet to pack any personal things like clothes or shoes but figure I’ll get everything in Singapore *I hope or I’m in trouble*. I fly out really early tomorrow morning and I’m so excited. I can’t wait to meet Ah ma and go shopping with her.

 Last night I dreamt that I was in Taiwan with my parents, brother and Jo. There was a knock on our hotel room door and it was Jan and Andy. We were all so excited and I told Jan that I’ve been waiting for her to go to the night markets together. We three sisters linked arms and walked out to the night markets where we recognized our favourite stalls and food. We decided to buy fishball noodles back for my Ah Pa because he likes fishball noodles.

 When I woke up I was so happy. I think my heart has already flown home.

Wendy’s birthday

It seems like birthday cakes are out and birthday cupcakes are the new trend. Wendy’s birthday started with the giant box of cupcakes.

We were all curious to see what the huge box contained, ordered by Jason, there were 25 cupcakes in all, because Wendy turned 25 last Saturday.

I think Wendy was really touched with Jason’s gesture, I overhead him saying ‘all your favourite things, shoe, bag..’ hehe, very sweet right? The cupcakes were very bright and pretty.

Birthday song time!

Wendy picks her first birthday cupcake of the night.

Everyone else picks a cupcake too, I think I had one with a butterfly. The frosting by itself was too sweet, but eaten together with the cake it was just nice. There were some tidbits which I prepared in the afternoon, sushi, three kinds of bruschetta and Richard baked some mini banana muffins.

Then the games begin…. Xinlong won three consecutive ‘Dai Di’ games in a row and crowed over us, insisting on taking these pics with the ‘losers’ in the background every time he won a game. Sometimes we feel like strangling him, there was a night when he won 11 games and he insisted on taking a photo every single time. I think by the time he reached game 12, there was a picture of me choking him on the sofa and MingSian beating him to a pulp.

Gerry’s birthday arrived at the stroke of midnight which was another reason for a round of drinks. I think in my past life I was a wines saleswoman or perhaps a bartendress. These pictures speak for themselves. Us chanting ‘Ming Sian, Ming Sian, Ming Sian’ while he skulled his beer.

Xinlong pretending to be drunk so he didn’t have to drink another glass. I don’t think he would have won any best actor awards that night.

Unfortunately the birthday girl didn’t get smashed but the birthday boy did! Look how red his face was!

A very hyper Gerry with the amused Din Yaw. I wonder whether Gerry realised he spent a good half an hour lying resting on Din Yaw’s shoulder. Hahahaha.

I think Wendy had a fun birthday, I recall her laughing hysterically at one point saying ‘wo hao kai xin’, hehehe, we were very happy too and it was so fun. So Happy Birthday Wendy, let’s do it again come January during Din Yaw’s birthday!

This picture sums it all. It was a goooood night.

Christmas cookies

It was Wendy’s birthday yesterday and Gerry’s birthday today so happy birthday guys! Hope both of you had really wonderful birthdays and that all your birthday wishes come true *hug* During Gerry’s birthday dinner tonight, Wendy mentioned that I don’t blog as often anymore, which I know is shamefully true, I’ve just been caught up with so many activities and new things in my life, that blogging is no longer a daily habit. But… I’m blogging now! And I’ll definitely try to blog everyday in Kuching if possible.

So.. we came up with the brilliant idea of baking Christmas cookies for our friends and colleagues. Scouted around for nice glass jars, Christmas ribbons etc. Which worked until my hand mixer of 3 years broke down and died. (T____T). BUT…. I got a real baking mixer instead!! So exciting !!!

We baked really basic butter cookies and cut them into Christmas shapes.I am really not a baker at all, all that measuring and weighing kinda frustrated me.

But the cookies turned out pretty cute which was good. But we also burned a batch when I forgot that they were in the oven.

We also made almond biscotti which I think I overloaded with a gazillion almonds (I like almonds), crunchy and fragrant, I couldn’t help eating these and still steal a biscotti now and then.

Leftover cookie dough makes for good strawberry jam filled biscuits. I’m bringing my cookie jar to work tomorrow, I hope it brings some Christmas cheer to an otherwise horrible Monday.

We actually saved on our Project November budget and had money left in the bank. So the last meal I decided we could afford to splurge and we had baked eggs with leeks for entree. It was interesting baking eggs in the oven, it’s something I will try again with different variations. And I’ve decided that I like leeks.

Chirashi sushi for main, yummy. Our chirashi was made with salmon sashimi, crabmeat, braised bamboo shoots and eggs.

Dessert was the Japanese castella sponge cake that I baked, my first baked cake in a long long time! My mum gave me this recipe and it was pretty good, easy to bake, light and simple. I sectioned the cake and sandwiched it with whipped cream and strawberries, topped it with more cream and cocoa powder dusting.

It didn’t end there, Richard surprised us with abalone for supper, haha luxurious or not? They were caught by Wendy and Jason, so thank you! The abalone was nice, he slow cooked the abalones overnight so they were tender but still bouncy.

A random brekky pic! I like making breakfast nowadays and this is a trio of bruschetta which I was experimenting for Wendy’s birthday tidbits, mushroom and parsley bruschetta with mozarella, chopped vine tomatoes and basil with pinenuts on cream cheese bruschetta and strawberries with mascapone cheese and drizzled honey bruschetta. Which one is your favourite?

Ok, time for bed now, good night!!

December 2009
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