Tuesday, December 31, 2013

VIA.PRE Italian Restaurant: Christmas Eve Dinner


First of all, Happy New Year's Eve and Happy 2014 in advance to my dearest family, friends and everyone who reads my blog out there!!! 2013 has been a tough year for me, tougher than I could ever imagined but I made it through alive and kicking. It's all good, Christina. It's all good.

I was not in mood that night on the Christmas Eve. Damn emo as Mr. Choo wasn't here with me to celebrate. Just like today, counting down on the loneliest and most hollow New Year's Eve. #ForeverAlone Been using this hashtag way too frequent lately =(

Due to time and work issues, we changed plan to dine out at VIA.PRE in Weld Quay instead of busying ourselves preparing Christmas Eve dinner at home. Pretty good feedback I've heard about the Italian restaurant and hence the visit. Reservation was made earlier before we left the house. It's disappointing how reluctant they were to set up our table until we got there.

VIA.PRE Italian Restaurant Penang: Christmas Eve's Dinner

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Pesta Chingay, Lion & Dragon Dance Parade 2013 at Esplanade Penang


It was a happening night last night along Jalan Padang Kota Lama and in front of Penang City Hall. There was this annual Pesta Chingay, Lion and Dragon Dance Parade going on between supposingly 7.30pm to 11pm, but it got delayed somehow.

The carnival hasn't even started by the time we arrived -________________-

We arrived late and the time was almost 9. So we decided to walk around a bit, picked up some fruits from the nearby hawkers where my random, silly act sparked everyone into laughter *burst out laughing*, luckily there were only three of us. Then tardily, we strolled back to witness the opening of the carnival.

Pesta Chingay, Lion & Dragon Dance Parade 2013 at Penang Esplanade

Friday, December 13, 2013

Gala House Restaurant & Cafe: Girls Gathering


Gala House is one of the latest addition on Muntri Street downtown. On a not-so-busy Wednesday evening, we came with a bunch of girls, they're my sister's girlfriends, technically. With the intention to celebrate one of the girl's birthday. Eating, chit-chatting and exchanging lame jokes. LOL. It was fun indeed although I couldn't quite catch-up.

We walked in to be seated on this table outside the cafe, it was drizzling a bit and the acoustic duet version of Miley Cyrus's "We Can't Stop" was forever looping in the background. Grrrrrr, I guess they really do love that song A LOT. *pulls hair*

We later requested to move to a warmer spot after placing our order. I mean, I wouldn't mind sitting outside if it was warm and breezy but definitely not when it's chilly and rainy. Furthermore, it has better lighting and dining ambiance inside. Friendly staffs, and lovely presentation and plating are also a plus.

Gala House Italian Restaurant Georgetown Penang

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Bangkok Trip: Wat Maha That / Monastery of the Great Reli in Ayutthaya


The sun shines so much brighter this morning, when I woke up. The flowers smell sweeter and the grass look greener. Hehe, I'm in a cheery mood apparently. Little things make me happy =)

Today, you're lucky enough to get to lay your eyes on one of the oldest Buddhist temples in Thailand, Wat Maha That aka "Monastery of the Great Reli". But before showing you the actual images, I shall just brief you through a little history of Wat Maha That, written on one the notice boards there.

"Wat Maha That is located to the east of the grand palace. It is the royal temple and most sacred in Ayutthaya during the glorious time. Buddha relics were enshrined in the Mahathat Chedi (the principle pagoda). This monastery was once the residence of the Supreme Patriarch.

According to Ayutthaya chronicle, Mahathat Chedi was starting to be built in the reign of Phra Borom Rajathirat I (Khun Luang Pha -Ngua) in 1374 and completed in the reign of King Ramesuan.

In the reign of King Song Tham, the principal pagoda collapsed through the foundation but it was restored later in the reign of King Prasat Thong.

This monastery was destroyed and had been burnt in the last war between Ayutthaya and Burma in A.D. 1767 and was left ruined."

Bangkok Trip: Wat Maha That

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Bangkok Trip: Bang Pa-In Palace / Summer Palace in Ayutthaya


Sipping on a tall Chocolate Cream Chip as I'm writing this post in Starbucks, one word - YUMMEH! It's the only coffee-free drink I enjoy most from the coffeehouse chain stores so far. Yeah, speaking of the miserable life of a gastric sufferer.

Bangkok seems distant now. I hardly remember the details about our Bangkok trip anymore. Blame my prematurely aged brain. Argh! Gotta watch my sodium intake from now on. You better, Christina!

We joined local tour again on day 4. First stop of our marathon temple tour was Bang Pa-In Palace aka the Summer Palace located in Bang Pa-In district, Ayutthaya Province. Approximately 60km away from the Baiyoke Sky Hotel we stayed in Bangkok. It was a great honor to be able to visit the facilities once utilized by the royal family, despite the blazing hot sun that cost us so much sweat and strength.

Bangkok Trip: Bang Pa-in Royal Palace / Summer Palace

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Pinang Peranakan (Babas and Nyonyas) Mansion


Pinang Peranakan Mansion Penang
My heart has been continually overwhelmed in the past few months of my stay in Penang, joyfully overwhelmed to see the myriad of heritage buildings, street arts, wall paintings, museums, themed cafes and restaurants emerging on this historical little island I'm falling for all over again. More and more tourists, both foreigners and locals are flocking the town area, particularly on the weekends, cycling and snapping pictures that they've become so mainstream.

On one fine and sunny weekend, my sis and I did not miss out on the chance to partake in such mainstream activities (there's nothing wrong with being mainstream on some things sometimes =p). We visited the home of an affluent Baba, built by the Kapitan Cina Chung Keng Kwee at the end of the 19th century. Admission was RM 20 per adult and it's subject to change without notice as stated on the brochures. Not cheap, and I personally think it's unfair to simply increase the rates whenever they feel like it.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Balik Pulau Lodge (浮罗山背客家山寨)


We were taken on a little adventurous trip to Balik Pulau Lodge aka Hakka Village last last Sunday. I went unprepared. No mosquito repellent, no sunblock. I honestly did not expect the Hakka heritage to be situated on top of a mountain in the middle of nowhere. It felt pretty much like visiting my grandparent's orchard back in my hometown. Nothing impressive to me really. People from the big cities, on the other hand, would find such country outdoor recreation rewarding.

After parking your vehicle (no personal vehicles allowed beyond the car park), you may choose to either hike / walk, cycle or simply pay a small amount of money for them to take you up the valley. Transportation fee is RM10 per person unless you're getting the RM35 package which works out cheaper with meals, entrance and transportation fees included.

Balik Pulau Lodge (客家山寨) Hakka Heritage Gallery

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Bangkok Trip: Chao Phraya Floating Market


Chao Phraya Floating Market Thailand
Hey, hey! How's everyone been doing? I don't feel very good still. Been down with food poisoning since Monday. Vomiting, headache, nausea, diarrhea, fever, stomach cramp...

I AM SO GLAD I SURVIVED!!!

Apart from visiting palm sugar factory and orchid farm, our day 3's itinerary also consists of a trip to Chao Phraya Floating Market. It's a bit remote from the Bangkok city to my surprise, approximately two hours or more by car. Transportation fees, both land and water were all included in the day tour package, except meals. Why need it when food is just at the reach of our hands?

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Bangkok Trip: Palm Sugar Making and Orchid Farm


For years, I've been using palm sugar in my cooking, and I wasn't aware what exactly it is made of or made from until my recent trip to Bangkok two weeks ago. Well, it never occurred to interest me, so yeah. Fortunately, our third day tour package covered the topic pretty well. We were exposed to the process of palm sugar making and a little hands-on experience.

I woke up super early that morning just to get myself ready and to enjoy the complimentary buffet breakfast which started from 6 to 10 every morning. My restless body wished to stay in the bed longer but my mind opposed, "Come on, girl. It's your first morning in Bangkok!!!"

So minus all the time spent to wait, ride and change elevators (only certain elevators get you to certain floors *smacks head*), we had merely half an hour to eat or less. In that case, "gulp down" is the more appropriate way to describe the situation.

After quick breakfast, we came down to lobby to find that our friendly tour guide was already there waiting with a big smile on his face. Some of the Thai people are genuinely really friendly and soft-spoken. He led us to a mini shuttle bus parked not far from Baiyoke Sky Hotel. Departure time was sharp at 6.45am as scheduled.

Palm Sugar Making

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Baiyoke Sky Hotel Bangkok: Buffet Dinner and Night View


Another month has passed by. Time is just slipping away through my fingers like sand, I realize. There's only eight weeks, exactly 55 days left of 2013. It does not feel good, awful indeed, living in a luggage that I was unsure whether to unpack or not in the past few months. But I made it through alright. Having my family and friends who have been kind and supportive to me. THANK YOU.

I take it as an opportunity and freedom to rot at home and grow mushrooms on my head do things I wanna do and go places I wanna go. Bangkok was one of the destinations on my travel list.

We went through a 23-hour exotic train ride from Butterworth, checked in into our accommodation, did some shopping and street food hunting at the Chatuchak Weekend Market before returning for a seafood buffet at the Bangkok Balcony Crystal Grill.

Baiyoke Sky Hotel Bangkok: Buffet Dinner

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Bangkok Trip: Chatuchak Weekend Market and Baiyoke Sky Hotel


Our first day in Bangkok was free and easy. We wanted it that way actually, so it wouldn't end up like our Hong Kong and Shen Zhen trip back in 2011, overly packed schedule that involved lots and lots of walking. I enjoy a leisure trip better, personally.

Upon arrival, we faced the dilemma to choose between train, tuk-tuk and taxi. Communication was really an issue in Bangkok. The people there don't speak foreign languages or dialects as good as those in Hatyai and Betong. After going through some discussion that required body language, LOL, we came to the conclusion that taxi is the fastest and most convenient way to deliver our exhausted bodies and baggage to where we stayed.  

Bangkok Trip: Chatuchak Weekend Market

Friday, October 25, 2013

Bangkok Trip: Train from Butterworth


Spending 23 hours in a train from Butterworth to Bangkok may be one of the wildest and craziest things I ever imagined myself doing, and I did it!!! Yay to my virgin cross-country train voyage! Would this considered backpacking without traveling with an actual backpack? Hahaha, forgive my silliness.

I went without preparing anything to keep my tummy and mind entertained. Glad that my sis brought grapes, breads and some other tidbits and my brother-in-law brought Steve Jobs, the book. LOL. Oh well, I'm easy. As long as there's a socket for me to charge my phone, I'll be more than happy. Even happier if there's internet access on my handheld device. I was born a social media addict!!!

Bangkok Trip by Train

Friday, October 18, 2013

Friend's Wedding + Visiting "Old" Friend Trip


6D5N KL Trip
Hellooooo, Penang! I missed ya, HEAPS!!! Some of you might have mistaken that I already flew back to Sydney but truth is, I'm still here peeps! My 6D5N visiting KL plus attending friend's wedding trip was indeed very rewarding, both mentally and emotionally. As a matter of fact, I was in desparate need of one like this.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Camera Museum Georgetown Penang


My journey to explore the Pearl of Orient continues. Needless to say, I am referring to my second home, Penang, not Asia's World City. Hehe.

I had my third visit to the Chinese Medical Practitioner (highly recommended) in Bukit Mertajam last Sunday. It's a huge relief that my thumb is actually making very good progress within the past three months without the need of depo-steroid injection.

The only drawback is, it weaken my wrist the following few days after each visit. Extra care has to be taken to avoid hurting my injured tendons again. Well, you better don't disappoint me 'cause I'm really counting myself on going to ESCAPE soon!!!

Back to today's topic. We toured the Camera Museum downtown on the same day's afternoon. We were a bit reluctant to go in at first as the entrance fees are not cheap and they were four of us altogether. But guess what? Money well spent on an eye-opening experience.

The Camera Museum Penang

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Ferringhi Garden Restaurant Penang


Times flies, it's been almost 10 weeks since we parted from each other. How badly I wish Mr. Choo was here by my side when we were at the Ferringhi Garden Restaurant last night. Sob *teary eyes*

The tranquil, friendly and warmth atmosphere the garden themed restaurant has to offer, apart from deliciously quality fusion western and Chinese cuisines. I would have complimented my dinner with a sweet bottle of fruity white wine but uh, I'm not much of a drinker to be honest, not even on a social level.

So just forget about the drinking part, since it's practically impossible without numbing myself and waking up with a hangover next morning =p Good food acts way much better in relieving stress and anxiety, don't you think?

Ferringhi Garden Restaurant Penang

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Penang Hean Boo Thean (玄母殿) and Lee Jetty (姓李桥)


Li Shan Dui (李山兑) Lee Jetty
Lee Jetty, alternatively known as Seh Lee Keo in Hokkien, is the fourth clan jetty from the north, situated between Tan Jetty and Mixed Clan Jetty. There was a karaoke competition going on last night, when we swung by this place. It brought us a very bright and Mid-Autumn feel seeing all those colorful lights and lanterns. Happy Mid-Autumn in advance, everyone!!!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Kek Lok Si Temple and Sushi Zanmai Gurney Paragon


What?!! What?!! Happy Long Weekend to all my Malaysian readers out there!!! When I first heard about Malaysia Day I was like, "Oh, I never knew it ever existed!" and it's on this coming Monday! Yeah, the 16th of September, in case you haven't heard of it too. Haha.

It rained a bit today, just like last Sunday. There was a quick shower in the morning, then the sky swiftly shifted from grey towards light blue with wisps of white clouds. How fortunate we were, to be able to shoot some painting-like pictures at Kek Lok Si Temple that day. Thanks Kwan Yin for her blessings.

Kek Lok Si Temple Penang

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Penang Murals / Street Arts / Wall Paintings


MURAL HUNT: MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!!! Well, not quite yet.

Only some of them have been successfully captured thus far. "Some" could possibly mean 1/3 of the total murals / street arts / wall paintings in Georgetown, Penang. I'm truly amazed at this point how much time and efforts these artists had to spend to create each and every single piece of them. Simply priceless and unique.

With so many tourists cycling and strolling around the heritage area, there's no doubt one would have to queue to take photos. Even longer queue during peak hours on both weekends and public holidays. And we did! Gosh, how I wish we had winter here in Malaysia. That way, I wouldn't have to pose with my greasy hair and clammy body under the steaming hot sun =/

Person tips: Don't ever come here at noon! But if you really insist, do come with shades and sunscreen on. Casual clothing recommended.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Pik Nik Cafe Penang


Pik Nik Cafe Penang
Tenpin bowling was fun last Saturday! Although I could barely score 80 per game. LOL. Thanks my sis and bro for bullying me into buying them meals. It was so unfair as I haven't really bowled in ages!!! Hahaha! But that's okay, at least I won one of the pool games against my bro xD

I suspect we were given a crooked pool table. No kidding. Else, it's impossible to be that hard to get the balls in right?! *shifty eyes* Three and a half games in one hour, just imagine...

Anyway, here's the dinner I shouted at Pik Nik Cafe downtown.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi Temple Penang (槟城龙山堂邱公司)


It's Monday today! The replacement holiday of National Day last Saturday. Yes, I'm talking about Malaysia's National Day aka Independence Day. As reluctant as it is to say, I'll be staying for a fair bit longer this time. Consequently meaning more future posts concerning Malaysia in my blog.

Love it or hate it, I'd have to dwell without Mr. Choo by my side. Just momentarily I hope. And don't worry guys, we did not break up, in case that's what you're wondering.

I spent the long weekend dating my sis. Sisters can date too! She's like my tour guide cum nanny whenever I come back to Penang. We drove around town that afternoon, then visited Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi, one of the city's major historic attraction before meeting up with my bro.

As stated on Wikipedia, the grandest clan temple in Malaysia includes an association building, a traditional theatre and the late 19th century row-houses.

Leong San Tong Khoo Kongsi Penang (槟城龙山堂邱公司)

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Hatyai Stainless Steel Temple / Chedi Traiphop Thaimongkhon


Hatyai Chedi Traiphop Thaimongkhon / Stainless Steel Temple
Hatyai, sometimes being spelled as Hat Yai, Had Yai or Haad Yai, is the largest city of Songkhla Province in southern Thailand. On a broiling hot Saturday, we traveled more than two hundred kilometres up north to Chedi Traiphop Thaimongkhon aka the Hatyai Stainless Steel Temple on Ko Hong Mountain.

By the time we arrived, it was already past two in the afternoon, Malaysia Time (MYT). It's subtle how the temperature increases every time we cross the border of Malaysia-Thailand. So clammy and ravenous I was that I secretly wished we were dining in an air-conditioned restaurant, feeding scrumptious good food into my mouth instead.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Snorkeling Trip to Tioman Marine Park and Renggis Island


Snorkeling at Tioman Marine Park and Renggis Island
Our snorkeling trip to Tioman Marine Park and Renggis Island!!! Yay, I mean, finally!!! I'd be a dumbass to not share these pictures with you, after forking out 70 bucks just to rent a waterproof camera from a Chinese rental store, which doesn't provide any soft or hard copy of the photos taken.

Damn funny right? How do they expect us, the customers, to get our hands on the photos, if we didn't so happen to have a laptop with us during the trip?

Furthermore, the staff (who's also the store owner, I assume), left us speechless when he came and knocked on our door, in the middle of the night, merely to make sure we wouldn't vanish into the thin air with his camera *smacks head*

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Tioman Island: Paya Beach Resort and Tomok Island


From Penang to Mersing, Johor, the journey was about 8 hours. Totally insane!!! I know. With the same amount of time, I could've flown myself to Sydney instead. But it was worth it, a fun family road trip I longed for in a long time.

We took off 11-ish that night, had a few food and toilet stops in between. Arrival time was one hour earlier than our ferry departure time, which is good. At least we got to have a quick breakfast fix in town before going on a slow and rocky ferry ride to Tioman Island.

Upon arrival, we checked-in into our 3D2N accommodation in Kampung Paya. Bathed and recharged ourselves with expensive meals at the resort's restaurant. We took a cat nap in the afternoon, then followed by a sequence of free activities as the day 1 tour package includes a buffet dinner only.

3D2N Tioman Island Trip: Paya Beach

Monday, August 5, 2013

Touring Around Ipoh


Back from holiday, back to reality. Our 3D2N trip to Tioman Island was indeed very fun and relaxing. Gosh, I already miss it so, so much!!! But I'm gonna have to repress and suppress my emotions and feelings right now, before I'm able to write about this road trip with my family.

A week ago, I visited few of the major towns in Perak with mum. Taiping, Ipoh, Kuala Kangsar and several other small ones. Despite the tiring long drive, I was rewarded with absolutely delish meals and breath-taking discoveries around the state I grew up in.

Kuala Sepetang: Kang Kao Seafood Restaurant (十八丁港口海鲜楼)

Monday, July 29, 2013

Ipoh Kellie's Castle / Kellie's Folly


Why is it always so muggy in Ipoh? It was stifling HOT, HOT, HOT that afternoon when we visited Kellie's Castle near Batu Gajah. My sis has been here before, that explains how I got to know about this tourist attraction and the reason why I was there.

For your viewing pleasure, vertical images have grown a little bit bigger today. Any thoughts? I intend to do the same to my future posts. It's just a teenie-weenie bit more scrolling, if you must criticize =___=

Ipoh Kellie's Castle

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Ipoh Murals / Street Art / Wall Paintings


When in Ipoh, we've came across a colorful spread of wall paintings located at the lane in between Jalan Masjid and Jalan Sultan Iskandar (previously or more commonly known as Hugh Low Street). All thanks to Ernest Zacharevic's murals and inspirations, street art has become a visible presence not only in Penang, but the capital city of Perak too. Hooray! Another to-do when you come to Ipoh next time!

Ipoh Wall Paintings / Street Arts

Monday, July 22, 2013

Alma Park Zoo Brisbane: Kangroos and Koalas


Alma Park Zoo Brisbane: Part 2
Alma Park Zoo - Part 2!!! You never miss the water till the well runs dry. Indeed! I really miss the chilly winter days in Australia now. Malaysia's warm and humid climate drives me nuts, overly warm and humid if you were to ask me. It's annoying how much it reminded me of the sweaty and sticky feel every time I come back, feeding my delicious blood to those nasty mosquitoes everyday. Grrr!!! I wish all creatures on the planet Earth could be as harmless as kangaroos and koalas *daydreams*

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Meringandan Pub: Farewell with Besties


Meringandan Pub: Farewell Lunch with Besties
It feels like months since I left Toowoomba, even though it's been barely more than a week until now. I really miss my friends and everything back in Queensland. In fact, I missed living and working in a small town very much. Not the job but the friendliest people I worked with. Haha! Can't blame me as I'm already so used to the lifestyle there =p

On the weekend after I had farewell gatherings with my workmates, we dragged our feet to Meringandan Pub once again for another farewell lunch. It's a popular country pub located in the middle of nowhere. Well, not nowhere but 19 kilometres somewhere out Highfields.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

When in Sydney: Dining Out


Sydney: New Chapter of Life
Driving in the city of Sydney could be traumatic. It drives new-to-town people like us insane as we really have no idea where to park. Parking in the malls are expensive!!! We spent more than $50 just for parking alone on our first day. Absolutely no clue which routes to take or avoid. No left turn here, no right turn there, blah, blah, blah... It makes you feel like abandoning your car and walk to the destination instead! *pulls hair and screams*

Mr. Choo and I always wanted to try out Noggi Frozen Yogurt, when its first branch opened in Brisbane CBD, the Myer Centre opposite Queen Street Mall. In the afternoon, after having Japanese cuisine at the Sushi Roll Japanese Restaurant in World Square, we made space in our stomachs for some icy-cold desserts.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Alma Park Zoo Brisbane: Wombat and More


Alma Park Zoo Brisbane (Part 1)
Gloomy day with periods of rain and drizzle sounded like the worst time to do any sight seeing or touristy things, especially visiting the Alma Park Zoo in Dakabin, north of Brisbane. We arrived before midday with our pre-purchased half-price entrance tickets. $52 in total for 3 adults, $18 for a single pass and $34 for a double pass.

If you haven't been to Australia or any of the zoos down under. Get yourself ready as I'm about to take you on a virtual tour to see some Australia's native animals =)

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Fiveways Hotel: Farewell Dinner with Smorgasboard


Dinner at Fiveways Hotel Toowoomba
We had a reunion cum farewell dinner with a long-lost friend last Monday. Finally! I mean, after trying to accommodate each other's schedule for months. It's always been, mainly because of me as I was a "devoted" shift worker (very much devoted to money =p) who worked 6 days a week. My bad, I feel terribly sorry, and sad that we are parting to fulfill our own destinies.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Farewell Lunch at the Meringandan Pub


Farewell Lunch at Meringandan Pub 
Chan kinda planned a farewell gathering for me and few other workmates last week. Well, it was a last minute thingy and I carried on to invite more people, pretty much most of the people I worked with on my last day to join us.

I've made a booking for a table of 20 at the Meringandan Pub. On Sunday, I managed to find my way there (thanks to the GPS on my iPhone). More than half of them actually turned up, which is good enough. Thanks to those who came. Thank you guys so, so much for your time and effort! *joyful tears*

Monday, July 1, 2013

Farewell Dinner at Ni Hao Chinese Restaurant


Farewell Dinner at Ni Hao Chinese Restaurant
My last two weeks in Queensland have been insanely hectic and fun. A lot of catching-up to do besides exploring more of the Sunshine State before we move. YES, WE'RE MOVING DOWN TO SYDNEY!!! How exciting! Yet sad at the same time, as I'll be leaving my job and friends here *sniff sniff*

Yesterday, after a plentiful lunch at the Meringandan Pub with a bunch of workmates (former workmates I mean), I attended another farewell gathering at the Ni Hao Chinese Restaurant for dinner. Smaller in size, but definitely crazier and more intimate than the one in the afternoon.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Korean BBQ at Hong Depot West End


Korean BBQ at Hong Depot West End
After shopping in Harbour Town, mainly shopped for Mr. Choo's work attire *ahem* We came to join in the fun of having Korean BBQ with the rest. We walked in, sat down on a table, a friendly wait staff later approached us to briefly introduce their menus.

I, well, basically everyone of us had no clue that the minimum order for Wagyu Combination ($30 per person) is at least two serves per table, according to the wait staff (possibly the manager) who rejected our first round order. The so-called "policy" was no where written on the menu! And her explanation could be a lot more precise I thought.

We felt very much like being compelled to be honest. Eventually, we picked something from the Main BBQ and a Tapas to satisfy our hunger.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Spirit Of Gold Coast Whale Watching


Spirit of Gold Coast Whale Watching
Last weekend was a bless. On Friday, we spent a night at Bestie's, then left for Mariner's Cove Marina the next early morning. Thanks my dearie for the awesome hospitality ♥ The weather was beautifully sunny with light blue skies after few rainy days, absolutely perfect for a whale watching cruise on the Gold Coast.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Sick, Tired and Nearly Dead


My Birthday
I've been feeling very sick since the past few days. Sore throat, blocked nose, headache, sneezing and coughing constantly *rubs sore nose with tissue* I'm down with a terribly bad cold!!! Or flu I'm not even sure. Aww, how I hate all these pains I'm feeling right now. The flu shot I had earlier this year is obviously no help in protecting my body against influenza virus *frown* I miss looking fresh and healthy like weeks ago, happily enjoying mouth-watering Nyonya cuisine in a restaurant with besties ='(

Monday, June 10, 2013

Bamboo Basket Chinese and Wagaya Japanese Restaurants


Bamboo Basket Chinese Restaurant Southbank
Last post of my pre-birthday trip of 2013.

Realizing it's the month of June already causes me to pause and acknowledge that time really does fly. Here I am, standing at the crossroad where there are life-changing decisions to be made. I hesitate, I panic, I feel utterly helpless and stressed. You know things got out of hand when you're having tough time to get a good night's sleep every night.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Rydges Southbank: Buffet Breakfast at Bacchus Bar and Restaurant


Rydges Southbank: Buffet Breakfast at Bacchus Bar and Restaurant
We received complimentary buffet breakfast meals during our two-night stay at the Rydges Southbank, available between 6 to 10 a.m. at the podium level. As we made our way into the restaurant, there was this friendly wait staff standing by at the counter, ready to allocate table for us in its warm and cozy dining area.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Pre-Birthday Trip: Tsuru Sushi Cafe West End


Tsuru Sushi Cafe West End
On the same day after we checked in into Rydges, we took a short walk around the South Bank area in search of a decent Japanese restaurant to dine in. Apparently, the walk didn't turn out to be as fruitful as we thought it would be. We found no restaurant that interests us, and thus, had to drive ourselves to this Tsuru Sushi Cafe in West End, which Mr. Choo came across while google-ing for restaurant recommendations.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Sunday Afternoon's Picnic


Sunday Morning's Picnic
I'm gonna keep this post real short today, as I have a few errands to run in the city. You know, it's one of those days when time is at a premium and there are so many other things to be done. Alright, alright, just stay calm and keep writing, Christina. What I'm about to show you now is the lovely picnic we had with friends last Sunday afternoon.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Paniyiri Greek Festival at Musgrave Park Brisbane


Paniyiri Greek Festival 2013
We made appearances at the Paniyiri Greek Festival held at Musgrave Park, South Brisbane two weeks ago. It was a two-day celebration and the weather was perfectly sunny and warm that afternoon. $10 entrance fee for adults, free for children.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Pre-Birthday Trip: Menya Mappen Noodle Bar Sunnybank


Pre-Birthday Trip: Menya Mappen Noodle Bar
Ouch, my injured wrist and thumb! I have problem typing on my keyboard now. Basically, I have problems performing my daily tasks (except taking shower) with this gigantic piece of splint wrapped around my wrist and thumb. Poor me, but don't worry, I'm doing absolutely alright apart from that. It's just a matter of time until I fully recovered and live like a normal person again =p

Can you guess what I had the most throughout my entire pre-birthday trip in Brissie? Japanese!!! We had three Japanese cuisines in a row within just two days!!! Hahahaa, that's how much I love Japanese food. We finally came to Menya Mappen for a little foodie expedition. We thought of trying it out last time when we were here for Hakataya Ramen.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Pre-Birthday Trip: Rydges Southbank


Pre-Birthday Trip: Rydges Hotel Brisbane
Yay!!! Here's an inside scoop of my pre-birthday trip down Brisbane!!! We first stopped by Sunnybank to get my hair trimmed and colored (just touching up the roots), had Japanese for lunch, then Mr. Choo surprised me with a Deluxe King Suite with river view at Rydges Southbank *teary eyes* Honestly, it was the most luxurious room I ever stayed in in my 2X years of life.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

All You Can Eat Buffet Lunch at Pizza Hut Toowoomba


Pizza Hut Toowoomba: All You Can Eat Buffet Lunch
Not long after the reopening of Pizza Hut Restaurant on the corner of Ruthven and Stenner streets (opposite K-Mart), we joined the crowd to have all-you-can-eat buffet lunch along with Tan's family. We arrived around noon and had our cars parked across the street. Parking could be a real issue here especially during lunch and dinner hours.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Dove Pure Anti-Perspirant Deodorant


Dove Pure Anti-Perspirant Deodorant
I'm honoured to be offered another Product Talk by Nuffnang. Thank you, Dove. Thank you, Nuffnang. It is Dove's newly launched pure anti-perspirant deodorant, ladies and gentlemen! And I get to have a little hands-on experience on both roll-on and spray. I've been using roll-on deodorants for as long as I could remember, considering that aerosol sprays are extremely flammable (hence, not so convenient to carry around, especially in cars) and the fact that they're not environmentally friendly (not proclaiming myself as an environmentalist or anything here =p).

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Best Korean Drama of 2013 / 2014 (Must Watch)


My Current Favorites and New K-Dramas of 2013

***Note: Some reviews may contain spoilers and are highlighted in black. Happy watching!!!

My Current Favorites and New K-Dramas of 2014

My Lover From The Stars (来自星星的你) You Came From the Stars / You Who Came From The Stars / You From Another Star / My Love From Another Star
My Lover From The Stars (来自星星的你)
Ratings: ★★★★★★★★☆☆

Title: 별에서 온 그대 / Byeoleseo On Geudae
Also known as: You Came From the Stars / You Who Came From The Stars / You From Another Star / My Love From Another Star
Previously known as: 별에서 온 남자 / Byeoleseo On Namja (Man From the Stars)
Genre: Romance, Comedy, Fantasy, Melodrama
Episodes: 21
Broadcast Network: SBS
Broadcast Period: 2013-Dec-18 to 2014-Feb-27 (Completed)

Cast:
Jun Ji Hyun as Chun Song Yi
Kim Soo Hyun as Do Min Joon
Park Hae Jin as Lee Hwi Kyung
Yoo In Na as Yoo Se Mi

Synopsis:
Do Min Joon is an alien who came to earth in 1609 and lands in the Joseon era, then lives through the next four hundred years to the present day where he works as university professor and falls in love with a haughty top hallyu actress, Chun Song Yi.

Best Korean Drama of 2013


The Heirs 왕관을 쓰려는자, 그무게를 견뎌라 - 상속자들 / Wangkwaneul Sseuryeoneunja, Geumoogereul Gyeondyeora - Sangsokjadeul
The Heirs (继承者们)
Ratings: ★★★★★★★★☆☆

Review: Mad, mad love!!! I'm so madly in love with "The Heirs", as if my heart's beating in the rhythm of the plots. A bit exaggerating, I know, but you'll get what I mean once you start watching the first episode. It keeps you go on and on!!! Simply captivating and adrenaline rushing, the love chemistry between Kim Tan (Lee Min Ho) and Cha Eun Sang (Park Shin Hye). It moved me to tears watching episode 17 and 18 *heart breaks*
 
Title: 왕관을 쓰려는자, 그무게를 견뎌라 - 상속자들 / Wangkwaneul Sseuryeoneunja, Geumoogereul Gyeondyeora - Sangsokjadeul
Also known as: The Inheritors / The One Trying to Wear the Crown, Withstands the Weight - The Heirs
Genre: Romance, Youth, School, Melodrama, Comedy
Episodes: 20
Broadcast Period: 2013-Oct-09 to 2013-Dec-12 (Completed)

Cast:
Lee Min Ho as Kim Tan
Park Shin Hye as Cha Eun Sang
Kim Woo Bin as Choi Young Do
Krystal Jung (f(x)) as Lee Bo Na

Synopsis:
A romantic comedy about high school students living in top 1% high society, learning about love and friendship. Things get turned topsy turvy when the students end up getting tangled with a girl from lower class who is the heir of "poverty", and romance unfolds.

Flower Boy Next Door (邻家花美男) /  이웃집 꽃미남
Flower Boy Next Door (邻家花美男)
Ratings: ★★★★★★★★☆☆

Review: The "Me Too, Flower!" and "King of Baking, Kim Tak Goo" actor returns in another fun-filled, humorous rom-com series with chubby bubbly Park Shin Hye. Yay for me as I really like Yoon Shi Yoon ❤ He is such a delicious eye candy on the screen. I enjoyed watching most of the scenes though the storyline may be rather cliché at points. They gave me a really good laugh with barely any dull moments =) By the way, who else here think that Kim Ji Hoon resembles the HK actor Raymond Lam? At certain angles only perhaps.

Title: 이웃집 꽃미남 / Yiootjib Kkotminam
Also known as: My Neighbor Flower Boy / The Pretty Boy Next Door / My Flower Boy Neighbor
Genre: Romance, Comedy
Episodes: 16
Broadcast Period: 2013-Jan-07 to 2013-Feb-26 (Completed)

Cast:
Park Shin Hye as Go Dok Mi
Yoon Shi Yoon as Enrique Geum
Kim Ji Hoon as Oh Jin Rak / Oh Jae Won
Park Soo Jin as Cha Do Hwi

Synopsis:
A romantic comedy about a girl named Go Dok Mi who locks her self in her ′tower′ from the world, is caught spying on the man living next door by Enrique Geum.

Chengodam-Dong Alice (清潭洞愛麗絲) /  청담동 앨리스 / Cheongdamdong Aelliseu
Cheongdam-Dong Alice (清潭洞爱丽丝)
Ratings: ★★★★★★★☆☆☆

Review: First, my heart was captured by the charisma of Han Se Kyung (the female lead). She's bold, she's genuine and I really admired that until the whole alice-in-wonderland-story grown to disappoint me. I dislike her transformation, it kinda ruined the concept of a fairytale in my opinion. But, I'd would still recommend this to you because I'm a big fan of Park Shi Hoo. His cuteness, every funny movement and facial expression of his simply melted my heart.

Title: 청담동 앨리스 / Cheongdamdong Aelliseu
Genre: Romance, Comedy
Episodes: 16
Broadcast period: 2012-Dec-01 to 2013-Jan-27 (Completed)

Cast:
Moon Geun Young as Han Se Kyung
Park Shi Hoo as Cha Seung Jo / Jean Thierry Cha
So Yi Hyun as Seo Yoon Joo
Kim Ji Suk as Tommy Hong

Synopsis:
Han Se Kyung (Moon Geun Young) is a talented young designer who lives each day with the motto "Strive for your dream to succeed". Until she met Cha Seung Jo (Park Shi Hoo) a president of a luxury brand shop in Cheongdam-dong who will change her life.

Gu Family Book (九家之书)
Gu Family Book (九家之书)
Ratings: ★★★★★★★☆☆☆

Title: 구가의 서 (九家의 書) / Googauiseo
Also known as: Ancient Medical Book / The Writings of Nine Houses / Book of the House of Gu / Kang Chi, the Beginning
Genre: Fantasy, Human, Melodrama, Historical, Romance
Episodes: 24
Broadcast Period: 2013-Apr-08 to 2013-Jun-25 (Completed)

Cast:
Lee Seung Ki as Choi Kang Chi
Bae Suzy as Dam Yeo Wool
Lee Sung Jae as Jo Kwan Woong
Jo Sung Ha as Dam Pyung Joon

Synopsis:
A melodrama epic about the great deal of trouble Choi Kang Chi, born as a half-human-half-mythical-creature, who goes through in order to become human and a story of Choi Kang Chi’s journey of struggling in order to live more like a human than anyone else despite not being able to become human.

Choi Kang Chi (Lee Seung Ki) was raised by the Choi family after having been picked up from the river. Choi Kang Chi is the son of Goo Wol Ryung (Choi Jin Hyuk), the guardian spirit of Jiri Mountain, and Yoon Seo Hwa (Lee Yeon Hee), his human mother. Kang Chi is an outspoken character who’s full of curiosity. He realizes that he’s a half-human-half-beast through a certain incident and starts living his second life.

Dam Yeo Wool (Bae Suzy) is a master of martial arts and archery. Yeo Wool is an upright character who really values the Three Bonds and Five Relationships in Confucianism, and becomes an instructor at a martial arts center at a young age.

The Thousandth Man (第一千个男人) 천번째 남자 / Chunbunjjae Namja
The Thousandth Man (第一千个男人)
Ratings: ★★★★★★★☆☆☆

Review: A short, light-hearted sitcom which can be easily finished within just one day. I was captured by the moving romance between Mi Jin (a nine-tailed fox) and Eung Suk (a human), it gave me goosebumps and heartache sometimes. Personally, I favor episode 3 the most!!! The love-story between Mi Jin and her high-school lover, Min Kyu, so touching!

Title: 천번째 남자 / Chunbunjjae Namja
Also known as: One Thousandth Man / A Thousand Man
Genre: Romance, Sitcom, Fantasy, Melodrama
Episodes: 8
Broadcast Period: 2012-Aug-17 to 2012-Oct-12 (Completed)

Cast:
Kang Ye Won as Goo Mi Jin
Lee Chun Hee as Kim Eung Suk
Jun Mi Sun as Goo Mi Sun
Hyo Min as Goo Mi Mo

Synopsis:
A fantasy sitcom about a “gumiho” (nine-tailed fox) who can only become human if she eats 1000 human male livers. After consuming 999 male livers, she tries to find the last liver of the male who truly loves her.

That Winter, The Wind Blows (那个冬天,起风了) 그 겨울, 바람이 분다 / Geu Gyeo-wool, Barami Boonda
That Winter, The Wind Blows (那年冬天,起风了)
Ratings: ★★★★★★★★☆☆

Review: It's a poignant love-story between a "brother" and a visually impaired sister. When facing death, they found love and reasons to live through each other. Very addictive plots (you wouldn't wanna miss it) plus good acting from both leads, but it just wasn't nose running, eye tearingly good enough to me. 

Title: 그 겨울, 바람이 분다 / Geu Gyeo-wool, Barami Boonda
Also known as: Wind Blows in the Winter
Genre: Melodrama, Romance
Episodes: 16
Broadcast Network: SBS
Broadcast Period: 2013-Feb-13 to 2013-Apr-03 (Completed)

Cast:
Jo In Sung as Oh Soo
Song Hye Kyo as Oh Young
Kim Bum as Park Jin Sung
Jung Eun Ji as Moon Hee Sun

Synopsis:
A melodrama about a man and a blind woman who don’t believe in love. Oh Soo is an orphan who is left heartbroken later in life after his first love passes away and comes to lead a goal-less life as a high stakes gambler. Oh Young is a lonely heiress who feels she must look after others and herself after her parents get divorced and she finds herself becoming visually impaired. The two will come to find the true meaning of love after meeting each other.

P.S. Do check out my previous post about Best Korean Drama of 2010 / 2011 / 2012 if you still haven't came across it =)
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