Saturday, November 28, 2009

What's up, Henderson?

Being at home is a state of mind and as I’m one person who keeps on moving to new towns, I need to adapt to new environment quickly. This is one of the rare weekends that I didn’t go home to KL and amazingly + quickly, I’ve found a lot of places to explore and got acquainted to plenty of new friends and met up with a few old friends, too.

One of the best things about facebook is that I’ve reconnected with so many of my old pals and yesterday I met up with J, someone I’ve not seen for 10 years! After 1 decade, obviously there are plenty of things to catch up on but I didn’t expect that the meeting included an impromptu hike across the Southern Ridge of Singapore, that is from Mount Faber across to Henderson Wave, Hilltop and finally Kent Ridge Park.

Apparently, there is a trail called Marang trail near the Harbourfront MRT station opposite Vivocity. Unlike the massive crowd at Vivocity, I could actually enjoy being with nature without being suffocated by people. There was hardly anyone out there enjoying nature post-rain…tsk,tsk,tsk. This is the start of an almost 9km hike if we choose to complete it all the way to NUS.

The funniest thing is that I was ‘hiking’ with my jeans, dressy top, handbag and crocs platform. This clueless klutz is definitely not dressed for the occasion. I’ve always forgotten that casual is ok in this country and bare legs are the norm, not the exception. Well despite the inappropriate costume, I still enjoyed the hike and the beautiful view along the way…thank God for brilliantly cool weather!

At the top of Marang trail is the touristy Mount Faber and Faber Point. We arrived to see groups of Chinese tourists snapping pictures of sunset. Talking about sunset, I think yesterday’s sunset was quite beautiful..I’ve never seen the sun being so red. I bet it’s because of the pollution but nonetheless, it was an amazingly vibrant red yolk!

Not only that, we managed to catch glimpses of hummingbirds and large bees hovering over the flowers and trees atop this famous mountain. There is another Merlion at Faber Point but I didn’t bother to take picture with the white stature as the landmark was packed with human beings flocking all around it.

The best part of the walk/hike was Henderson Wave. It’s such a cool bridge! Earlier in the afternoon, I thought I saw something unique hanging above my head while I was in the bus heading towards Harbourfront. I didn’t know that it was the highest pedestrian bridge in Singapore and made from tropical timber.

The structure was lighted up very beautifully at night and I snapped pictures until my batteries died on me. What a cool hang-out place after a long run! Apparently, the whole park stretches to Kent Ridge (near my hospital) but the gang was too hungry and moody to complete the whole routh. Anyhow, I’m hyped up to try the entire route later this week….

Thus being extremely famished after a happy hike, we decided to stop prematurely (we could have continued to the hilltop walk and HortPark and Alexandra Arch) because of a collective craving for meatballs. Yup, we gravitated to the famous Swedish meatballs at Ikea, braved the long queue and gobbled up the little wonderful goodies with yummy sauce. Not only that, I’ve finally gotten my curtains! A happy ending to an unexpectedly marvelous day indeed…

Monday, November 23, 2009

1 week and still sober :-)

Today's officially the second week of work here and I love it. Of course I'm still settling down to my new room and I've just met a small proportion of Singaporeans (and Malaysians working here) but I'm glad that I made a decision to wander out of my comfort zone.

I guess the most surprising thing is the way my new bosses helped me to acclimatize to this new habitat. They have been absolutely wonderful, helpful and crazy fun. Most importantly, food's not too bad and I've discovered that Mr Bean (a certain running friend's favourite stall) is available in the hospital (along with a lot of yummy Chinese food). Another brilliant place which I've ranked very highly is Bar Bar Black Sheep while The Soup restaurant is pretty awesome too...I love their ginger chicken. hopefully I shall blog about all these places soon :-)

Going to work in the early morning entails taking a bus ride past 5 bus stops (hospital's about 10mins away from my place) while all the happening watering holes are 500m away from my block of flats. The funniest thing is that I wake up at the crack of dawn because I don't even have curtains! I intend to do something about that in the near future...yeah, maybe in this year perhaps?

Not sure whether things will change when I start oncall and work becomes i've a brush with heavy activities at the clinic and I love the productivity. In fact, I'm totally cool with tagging unofficially. I suspect that I'm actually in love with my work. Or I'm slightly 'sick'..hahaha

The biggest bummer is that I've not found my running feet yet. The rhythm for outdoor sports and adventure is a bit stunted for now. Sadly, swam only once last week although there is a gym in the hospital. Nearest public pool is 5 mins walk from my house. Probably will go explore either the gym or the pool tomorrow eh? Or check out the parks near this area. In the meantime, excuse me, I've got to check out one whole island.....

Saturday, November 14, 2009

How not to neglect a blog

I need to recap the week, desperately. It went by without me if I was on 'fast forward' when I should be on 'play' button.

Truthfully when I went on holiday, I thought I would be bumming around for 2 weeks. One phone call this Monday and it sent me scrambling to pack my stuff, meet friends for farewell meals and zoom down the Peninsular to S'pore for a few days of...paperwork?

Chasing paperwork on my two feet and a highly-efficient public transportation is akin to a sanitized version Amazing Race Asia. I've no idea about directions in Singapore and depended on mostly MRT location maps, friendly passersby and occassional google maps. And it worked.

However, in my zeal for earning carbon credit and going green...I've forgotten how bloody hot it is to walk around in a tropical country, especially since I ain't a schoolgirl anymore. Not only that, I've tried my darnedest to save money as I will be living on malaysian ringgit until pay day comes (and as for when...God knows!) so I was staying in a backpacker's hostel in Serangoon Road. It came highly-recommended but was shitty for me. I stayed in a 6-person dorm and the air-cond sucks (very warm) and the room has no windows. I guess it doesn't pay off to be a cheapskate! Serves me right eh?

My saving grace was the Singaporean efficiency and workaholism. Most of the staff stays on in the office during lunchtime and also way past 6 pm. I guess some people (like yours truly) would do anything to avoid overcrowding, thus they spend longer hours at their workplace. Whatever it is, babes, I manage to settle everything within 1.5 days (which is sth quite laudable) and left my dungeon, er i mean, dorm to the much younger, hipper backpackers. This CPD is home for the weekend, spending time with my creature comforts and heaping in the yummy Malaysian food. Till the war resumes again next week, I hope that I will not neglect this blog too much!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

A KL girl talks on her b-day

I think I didn’t blog on my birthday last year because I was away in Singapore and China. This year, I was almost out-of-the-country again but my paperwork got in the way thus CPD is still here. Anyhow, all’s well that ends well as I’m about to start working proper soon and who's complaining when bumming around in KL can be good too (hehehe)

On the subject of birthday….IMHO it’s nice to spend birthdays at home and with family and friends. I’m not sure whether I’ll be in KL for the next few birthdays but this one is truly memorable and satisfying. The people that matters either contacted me or met up with me the past few days and the upcoming week. I’ve been to wonderful restaurants, visited interesting spots and had meaningful and engaging conversations with people I’ve not connected with for years.

KL could be both enjoyable and unforgettable once we actually have time to discover its various sights and wonders. Sadly this KL girl has rarely taken time out to savour the art of living as a young professional in KL. The last time I worked here, circa 2005, I was a fresh-out-of-med-school junior doctor, tired, inexperienced and overworked beyond my imagination. That’s why I’ve never contemplated coming back KL for work. However, coming back for leisure and pleasure is an entirely different story

The past few months have been a revelation as I enjoy the best of both Ipoh and KL. Well, more of Ipoh but I do make it a point to come back to KL as often as possible. I’m not sure whether I’ll be back to my hometown as often as before, but I guess it’s time to relax and enjoy life back at home before I go on the fast lane again.
P.S. : Contrary to what you see on my little tiramisu birthday cake, I ain't 12 or 21 or 30. I wish I'm forever 21 though hahaha....

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


Another chapter of my life beckons as I pack up my bags and leave. After spending almost 1 year here, I find it very difficult to say my farewell. Yet I look forward to one of the biggest challenge in my life. It will be different living in one of the most globalized city in the world.

I feel like the character in Carrie Underwood’s song, singing Jesus Takes the Wheel. She said goodbye to her family and her small hometown as she embarked on new life at the Big Apple. I know I ain’t going to New York and my hometown is not Ipoh…but the feelings are similar. (haha)

Anyhow, I’ll miss PS and Michelle a lot. They are my gorgeous and bubbly housemates who stood by me over the years since I met them in 2006. Girls..I’ll miss the easygoing company, the scrumptious meals, the long chats and ‘counselling’ sessions, the numerous outdoor activities we enjoy together (I never knew I could be so sporty until I've met PS) and the mad shopping sprees! Anyhow, I sure hope I’ll see them again down South…..

Yeah, yeah I know I shouldn't sound so final as I’ll be in Malaysia for the next 2 weeks but I bet it’s not gonna be the same anymore. As I drive out of Ipoh by myself for the very last time tomorrow, I just wanna say : ‘Au revoir ma cherie’ to all of you who knew me in Ipoh….