Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Let's talk about sex, baby...(28th April 2009)

…let’s talk about you and me…let's talk about all the good things and the bad things that may be…let's talk about sex…I’ve got this Salt ‘N’ Pepa song stuck in my head! Urgh!!

James and I have been up to mischief today. Ah yes, the week was a bit boring so us two decided to spice it up with a field trip to the adult shop, Dvice, located on Willis St to check out what they had in store. Haha, I can so see your faces cringe – come on, going into an adult isn’t a bad thing. Ok, perhaps a wee bit embarrassing if caught walking in or out from one by someone you know and so what? Just shows you’re more open-minded, creative and adventurous in the bedroom than others!

Sex is part of our lives and there shouldn’t be any reason why one couldn’t freely talk about it – we talk about work, our social activities, health etc. when with family or friends so why is it so difficult to talk about sex? Look, I’m a modern, pragmatic woman and have no issues discussing this topic with anyone (or even going to an adult shop with my buddy, James). Personally, I find the earlier one gets equipped with as much information as they can on sex (and this includes safe sex, of course) before they carry out the act is best. Like everything else in life, sex is a skill and knowledge that can be learnt and even mastered. And talking or sharing is a form of learning. There are plenty of books out there you can read too, including Hot Sex by Tracey Cox, a book about how to ‘do it’, which James and Hew both recommended to me (if you plan to get this book as an audio book, make time to just listen to it – I found it very difficult to work and listen to it at the same time. Just can’t concentrate!), and The Secret Garden by Nancy Friday, a book on women’s sexual fantasies (hah, and you think only men fantasize – well, obviously the sisterhood ain’t sharing info in the group…) written by a woman as old as my grandmother, which I’m also reading at the moment.

Most of the time when we think about adult shops, images of porn and the sleazy old bastard behind the counter giving you dirty looks come to mind. Dvice is not that type of shop. There are no X-rated posters inside or outside the store and it felt more like we had walked into a boutique clothes store that just specializes in selling sex gear. And the store person was very professional and knowledgeable, answering any questions you may have and explaining how the sex toys work. Sex gear is a totally new territory to me and this was my first lesson to find out more and understand what the hype in sex toys was all about.

I told the girl that I was a new to all these and asked for her recommendation on a toy for me. She suggested getting myself a vibrator and went on showing me all the different types of vibrators they had – wow, you can find a vibrator in almost any size and colour, even waterproof and chargeable ones. There was one that looked just like a cartoon caterpillar (hmm, not very sexy-looking…) and James turned on the Pearl Rabbit vibrator (this is the one made infamous by Sex and the City), which allows women to enjoy both clitoral and internal stimulation, though to me, it looked like a mean machine with a rotating shaft and spinning pearls that made me dizzy just looking at it. Oh, but the one that really impressed me was Lily, a sleek-looking clitoral vibrator that fits snugly in the curve of the palm of your hand, quiet yet powerful enough to send a range of pulses, and escalating vibrations (the lady turned it on and had me hold Lily in my palm), ultra discreet (looks like a garage door remote), recharges like a mobile phone on a charger (can you believe that even sex toys are so advanced in technology?) and comes with a 1 year warranty. Looked so cute and delicious to own! The only downside to it was that it wasn’t waterproof and cost a steep $239.99.

The other item that fascinated me was the Smart Balls. We often hear women who suffer urinary incontinence, gone through pregnancy and childbirth, or more common these days, as a means of tightening their vagina, performing Kegel exercises which strengthens their pelvic floor muscles. The Smart Balls are the smart option, no-brainer way to Kegel exercises for the woman! Comes in a funky range of colours, these silicone balls slip into your vagina and the gentle movements inside naturally tones the pelvic floor muscles. Hmm, I cannot imagine how it would feel if a woman were to wear it to the gym, at work or just for the day – the lady assured me that it would be fine wearing it while carrying out most of my daily activities. Ok…Cost $47.99 for these little things. You can go for the cheaper, earlier versions but I wouldn’t dare – the balls make a noise when you shake them. Er, I don’t think so…

We continued walking around the shop, discovering interesting things – they had costumes (oh yeah, that’s so me – me and my costume fetish haha!), books, games, flavoured body paint, lubricants etc. They had Purr Clitoral Arousal Cream for $29.99 that helps the body mimic the physical state of sexual arousal i.e. more bloodflow to the clit. Talk about cheaters way for women to get hot and heavy in the bedroom, fast! And from now till Mother’s Day, they were giving out free wand butterfly vibrators (a hideous pink butterfly which you literally strap it on yourself like a harness) worth $80 for purchases made over $150!! Double the pleasure, I say! Learnt so much in the 45-minutes spent there – had lots of fun with James on our mini field trip ;)

Sunday, 26 April 2009

Chilled out Sunday with Damien (26th April 2009)

Had brunch with Damien late this morning at one of his favourite cafes in town, Sweet Mothers Kitchen. Yawn, I could do with more sleep but I would like a yummy brunch too, hmm…I do need that first cup of coffee to wake me up desperately though…The place was busy despite the pouring rain outside and fortunately for us, we only had to wait a short while for a table to come available. Had their waffles with grilled banana and bacon with maple syrup (cost $14.50, pretty average waffles) while Damien had a Breakfast Burrito, a large tortilla wrapped up and filled with scrambled eggs, black beans and melted cheese, served with salsa and guacamole (cost $11.50). We also tried their beignet (pronounced BEN- YAY) which cost $3 for 2 large New Orleans donut dusted in icing sugar – yummy but we had no more space to fit a beignet each after our meals. Thankfully Kim and Colm popped over to join us and Colm helped polished them off :) You know, Colm makes a very good human food disposal – he’s always helping finish up our plates whenever we go out for group dinners and where does it all go??? He doesn’t put on anything!! So unfair :/

Left Sweet Mothers about 1pm and accompanied Damien shoe shopping in town. It is always fun to shop with boys – like me, most of them only shop when they really have to and often have a good idea of what they needed to buy or style they are looking for (not like girls who would go out to buy 1 item and end up home with 2-3 bagfuls of stuff). Plus it’s nice that they would ask me for input on the items they are planning to purchase – I get to be fashion consultant for the day!

Eeks, it’s just pissing rain! Said our goodbyes about 2pm to do our own things and caught up again at 7.30pm to watch The Da Vinci Code at his place. It was a long movie which I had thought would have been creeper with that psycho albino monk, Silas, played by Paul Bettany in it. Still, there were scenes that made me cringe like when he would whip himself. Eee…Lots of mystery behind the story about the Christian world and Jesus descendents. I’m not religious and don’t really care if there really are people carrying the Jesus bloodline. I mean, think about it – those people would be like you and me, another human, not someone with supernatural powers so what is the point of keeping such people ‘safe’ and a secret?

In between watching the long movie, Damien and I experimented on an artichoke he bought at the supermarket earlier during the week. I’ve not seen artichoke in its original form (I’ve had artichoke hearts on antipasto platters and they are yum!) and this huge green flower has a large head with an edible bud and leaves/petals. Reminds me much of a cactus, really…It was quite funny that we looked up the internet on how to cook and eat an artichoke. We steamed the artichoke in a large pot of water with a clove of garlic, a slice of lemon, and a bay leaf (apparently, this adds wonderful flavour to the artichoke). Took about 45 minutes to cook the thing – it is deemed cooked when you are able to pull the outer leaves off easily. This is all so interesting! My eyes were all excited like a little kid, eager to see the result of our experiment, hehe…How do we eat it? Well, you can have it cold or hot (I prefer it hot), served with a dip of melted butter, balsamic vinegar, mayonnaise or just extra virgin olive oil, which was what we had. Pull off one leaf at a time, dip the white fleshy end into the dip, place in mouth with dip side down, and pull through teeth to remove the soft, pulpy, delicious portion of the petal. Pretty much stripping the insides of the petal (you don’t eat the petal and be careful of it’s sharp pointy end). And you would continue on until all the petals are removed and what you have left is the artichoke heart. Remove the fuzzy bits (called ‘choke’), cut up the heart and have it with your dip. I can’t quite describe the taste of the artichoke – kind of a light grassy taste to it on its own. I had SO much fun cooking and eating the artichoke – another first for me! Learn something new everyday ;)

Oh yeah, I bought Damien an ANZAC biscuit since it was ANZAC weekend and he was telling me during brunch that he hasn’t had one yet – now you can’t say you haven’t had the biscuit for the weekend!

Cuban Carousel and Salsa Ball (25th April 2009)

Christian and I bought tickets to see the one-night only dance show, Cuban Carousel, at The Opera House this evening at 8pm. Cost us $60 per person for the ticket and we had the best seats in the house – dress circle (upstairs), front row! Awesome, Christian, for snagging such good seats!!

Cuban Carousel is a dance show directed and choreographed by Vivio and Greydis (Cuban dancers based in Auckland, both well-respected teachers and international dancers both in NZ and abroad) featuring 6 world-class Cuban dancers with an accompaniment of local contemporary dancers. The dance recounts the historical journey of Cuba from the first inhabitants to modern day, described in a magical carousel fantasy and Cuban rhythms.

Honestly, I wasn’t surprised that not many of the regular salsa dancers were here tonight. Vivio and Greydis are amazing dancers but most of us had seen the same choreographed dances several times that I supposed it was the reason why the majority decided not to see this show. Personally, the show was good and beautiful to watch (so many dances and costume changes) but there was something missing, lacking in wow factor of some sort. There were lots more contemporary dancing in this show (including flamenco and tap dancing) and dances performed by the Cubans which I’ve never seen before. Hmm, perhaps more salsa or cha-cha flair to it might have been better? Still, I have to hand it to them for being able to dance so much in the 2-hour show with a 15 minutes interval in between. Great effort and look forward to see more new choreographs by Vivio and Greydis.

10.15pm…oh-o, we had better run…Christian was DJ-ing tonight at the salsa ball in St James Theatre and we had less than 10 minutes to walk there! I wasn’t really planning to go to the ball but after watching Cuban Carousel, I had my groove on and was ready to burn the dance floor! Had lots of awesome dances tonight, some with new faces I’ve not seen. Perhaps it has to do with my bright red dress, getting all the attention haha…or the fact that I’m feeling better now so was back to being the social me and flitting around talking to friends and dancing in between. Nelson, my new Cuban friend, is so cute when he dances because he has a tendency to stick out his tongue with a cheeky smile when dancing and that makes me laugh! Him, being Cuban, has his own salsa dance style – watching his feet move throws me off quite a bit but still fun to dance with.

Eww, Claus, you are all sweaty…I could see sweat patches on his top…eww, eww, eww…“Don’t come near me, you,” I warned and next thing I knew, he was hugging me and not letting me go on purpose. ARGH!!!!

“So, how’s your swing class? You like swing, huh?” he asked, with a glint in his eyes with a sex connotation, to which I cheekily responded, “Oh yeah, I’m enjoying swing, even more so in a large group, guys and girls swapping partners frequently,” and we both cracked up laughing.

Tonight was also Andrea’s last night in town. She heads home to Germany tomorrow and we’ll get to see her again around Christmas. Was lovely to catch up with you during your time here, sweetie. Take care, safe flight home and keep in touch!

Left the ball around 1pm. Good god, when I stopped dancing and sat down, damn, my feet were sore! Thankfully it’s Sunday tomorrow – a whole day to rest up :) Photos taken tonight: http://www.flickr.com/photos/8070917@N05/sets/72157617326319110/detail/

Saturday, 25 April 2009

Love and War party (24th April 2009)

I LOVE costume parties! When Rachel, Debs and Alice mentioned having a costume party at their flat in conjunction with ANZAC day, I was all in! During the week, most of us were busy figuring out what we were going to dress up as for the Love and War theme. Costume wasn’t compulsory but our gang would dress up whenever the opportunity arises! Rachel and Debs suggested I turn up as Pocahontas while Scott had the idea of me going as a dominatrix…right…well, I will see about that…

Went to The Costume Company on Ghuznee St (same shop I got my 7’s event Supergirl costume) and tried to look for the costumes but no luck finding something to suit my size. One of the ladies in the shop asked me to put on their Queen of Hearts costume – Queen of Hearts??? How does THAT fit in with the theme???? “Well, hearts = love, and the Queen of Hearts did wage war…just put it on,” coaxed the lady. Oh well, let’s put it on and see…wow. Wow! All 3 of us went quiet and then broke into huge smiles – it was perfect! I looked so adorable (and sexy) in the costume that came along with a tiara. This is DEFINITELY me – I’m getting this!! Cost me $55 for my costume hire. Hope Rach, Debs and Scott aren’t too disappointed I didn’t dress up as characters they suggested but I’m sure they’ll love this one :P

Scott and I were meeting up for dinner in town before heading to the party. Rushed home from work to get ready and had to sew on ribbons and cut out spades onto my knee-high socks to look the character, AND was constantly being interrupted by James’ texts asking me to come out for a drink so he could check out my costume. Ok, ok, just let me finish this! He managed to convince me to turn up at The Establishment and bought me a drink in exchange for a photo with me. Cheeky! I had people staring at me (my socks, really, since my costume was covered by my winter coat) as I walked from home to the bar. Bumped into flatmate Priscilla on the way and she made me do a coat flash to see my costume. Peep-show!

Scott came to meet me at The Establishment and boy did he look the character in his green camouflage military costume – he even had props, a toy machine gun and a half-smoked cigar! Awesome :) We had more stares as we walked over to Lone Star for dinner. The patrons in the restaurant had bewildered looks when we casually walked in and had our steak dinner in full costume. I didn’t care if people were staring - I secretly loved the attention, haha! One of the waitresses actually asked Scott if that was what he wore all the time. Huh???

Hmm, good choice picking Lone Star for dinner, Scott! I had their Rockin’ Ribeye, a 350gm prime Angus Ribeye steak marinated with cracked pepper, topped with brandy and green peppercorn sauce, and served with buffalo chips and Lone Star coleslaw. YUM! Normally, 350gm of steak is too much for me but surprisingly I finished most of my $33 dinner – it was too good and I was having a steak craving (licks lips).

Around 9pm, we left the restaurant to meet George on Courtenay Place (George was tagging along to the party), picked up some alcohol from the nearby wine shop and taxied up to Brooklyn to Rachel’s. Most people at the party were dressed up in costumes and the whole house was nicely decorated to fit the theme – great job, everyone! Colm was D'Artagnan (a character from The Three Musketeers), Rachel and Kelly were hippies, Alice was all covered up in her Abayah (long black garment worn by Muslim women) and Hejab (scarf-like cover that covered her head except her face), Alicia was a Roman goddess, Ellen was a pilot, and Debs and Josh were in army costumes. Dvita and Mel turned up wearing terrorist masks which cracked us all up! There was someone who came as an ANZAC biscuit which I had mistaken for a tortoise at first eeks…Lots of photos in between flitting around catching up with friends over drinks and snacks.

I’ve only recently found out that Colm used to be a professional fencer and he brought along foam swords and gave a few of us a flash fencing lesson. Tap the head, tap the shoulder, tap the side of the chest…Ready? ON GUARD! Ok, I was definitely not Colm’s match despite him putting down his guard – I was attacked everywhere and found myself crouching down to the floor in defence AND in fits of laughter!

There wasn’t a huge crowd at the party so it was very chilled out and a good opportunity to just catch up with one another. Most people started to leave for home around 12am while the rest of us stayed on to play with fireworks and sparklers. There was nothing happening in town after midnight either as all clubs and bars shut down at 12am for the public holiday. This was going to be an early Friday night for me! Thanks Rachel, Debs and Alice for the invite to your awesome party!! Photos taken tonight: http://www.flickr.com/photos/8070917@N05/sets/72157617287003458/detail/

Friday, 24 April 2009

Beating the cold bug (20th - 23rd April 2009)

I am SO sick of feeling miserable with this cold – haven’t been swimming or exercising much to the point it was beginning to REALLY bug me. Decided to f&^k it and went for a swim on Monday. Damn, felt so much better after the swim! On Tuesday, I went to sweat it all out in Bikram yoga class. Love my classes with instructor Glenda – her voice is so soothing it relaxes me, yet she always knows how to push my limits in class. I must say, after the class, I walked out feeling rather ‘orgasmic’ – just the wonderful light feeling of blood rushed through your body, all relaxed and tension released after the 90-minute class. Such an awesome feeling…ah…AND I get a radiant after-glow too :)

Caught up with George for dinner on Wednesday evening – the poor fellow hasn’t been feeling very well and even forgotten about our dinner! While I waited for him to turn up at Whitcoulls on Courtenay Central, you would not believe who I bumped into – my new stalker/admirer, Michael. Ah yes, I have my fair share of such men, random guys who popped up in my life whom I do not fancy the slightest but just because I give them a slice of my time, they think they stand a chance and try too hard chasing me – the flowers, the emails, the non-stop texting or calls, even turning up unannounced at my front door. Creeps me out!

How did Michael come about? 1st time I met him, I was on my way to the post office and this small-sized Asian man came running up to me, stopping my tracks to ask me where I came from. Weird! He thought I came from Laos (that was where he came from) and I thought that was so odd for him to run up to me just to ask. For the record, I’ve been mistaken for a Filipino many times in NZ but from Laos? That was a first. Anyway, a couple of weeks later, the same thing happened again, this time outside my work building. He had obviously forgotten our previous encounter (or could this be his usual conversation starter line?) and instead of answering him, I asked him his own question and then introduced myself (he turned out to be working for the same company with James and bunch). Didn’t think much of that incident and life continued on. Last week, he bumped into me somewhere on Courtenay Place and followed me half a block to where I was heading to before going his way – he asked if he could have lunch with me sometime and I went “Sure…” when I should have said no or gave some random excuse like “I don’t think my bf would approve of that” as James suggested. Though if I was a man pursuing a woman and she gave me that excuse, I would have just said “No problem, bring him along for lunch” just to see her reaction in the event she was lying about her relationship status. Besides, I didn’t think there was any harm having lunch and getting to know another person in town though him following me half the block when it wasn’t even on his way did ring stalker alarm bells in my head.

Anyway, woe is me I bumped into him in Whitcoulls this evening and he was on his way out but saw me and spent the rest of the time while I was there just lingering around where he could see me, making me feel a bit uncomfortable and having to keep bringing up random topics to chat so he wouldn’t just look at me while I was pretending to busy myself browsing books. He kept asking me for my phone number and when I shrugged him off, I thought he gave up and left but instead set his bag on a nearby chair, opened it to take out a pen and paper, and just stood there with eager eyes waiting for me to write my number on the paper. Oh dear god…I gave him my office number – no way was he getting my mobile. Urgh, where IS George?

“Why are you not having dinner with an Asian man?” he blurted out after I told him I was meeting George for dinner (I happened to mention that George was a maths lecturer and Michael started to tell me he’s very good in maths too – and the point being???). I didn’t know to feel insulted or what and just went “Excuse me?” to which he repeated the question again and then added that he found Asian girls tend to date white guys. WTF???!!! “Look, Michael, I have lots of friends here who come from all around the world and coincidentally I do not have that many Asian friends to tell you whether it is true or not that Asian girls tend to go for non-Asian men,” I said in a rather curt tone. George, where the hell are you? Get your ass here now and save me from this torture! Thankfully George turned up soon after and I was more than ready to leave. Bye Michael and thank you George for saving me! Let’s go, let’s go!!

George and I caught up over dinner at Momo Tea and then drinks at Hooch Bar. Was nice to see him again and hope he gets better soon so he could come along to Rachel’s house party this Friday. Rest up!

Thursday, I had a chilled out dinner after samba class with Damien at his place where he made us 2kgs of steam mussels in a curry mix served with sour dough bread – yum! Apparently he got the recipe off a video on YouTube :) Us kids of the new generation, eh? Pretty much look up anything on the internet! It was a lovely quiet evening of catching up (and getting our hands dirty with the delicious food) – thanks Damien!

Was on a work training course the whole week this week and have been catching up on some reading too in between work and other social activities. Just finished reading a book titled You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay – an interesting book that teaches similar philosophies like The Secret, where what and how you think has great influence in how the rest of your body functions. There is strong belief in the book that illnesses such as cancer, headaches etc. are the result of human grievances, built up anger and other negative thoughts and emotions. How true that is, I’m not sure but I do have to agree that positive thinking will help at times when one is sick, just to get out of the ‘down’ feeling. Me keeping busy, active and happy does help cure me from my cold bug :)

The other book I’ve started reading is He’s Just Not That Into You (I’ve seen the movie which was based on this book). Haha, you girls have to read this one – it’s such a cracker and easy to read. Written by a comedian and former executive writer of Sex and the City, the book is smart, funny and full of Qs & As covering every excuse women has ever made to avoid admitting to herself that a man just wasn’t that interested with her. It is so true – women DO give men too many chances and excuses for their bad behaviour. I’ve been in several of these women’s shoes (including staring at the phone asking why it wouldn’t goddamn ring) and every time I read another “Dear Greg” letter in the book and recall my personal experience, an image of me tossing the book and hitting that particular guy in the head pops up in my head. Ka-poof, and he falls off his chair! At the very least if the book doesn’t give you alarm bells that the guy you are seeing might be just not that into you, it does empower women and makes you feel your self-worth and happiness are more important.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Karen's eviction party & drinks with the boys at Alice (18th April 2009)

Karen and her flatmates have been ‘evicted’ from their current home in Mt Victoria – the owners had sold the house and they had 4 weeks to vacate the place. They had too many bottles of spirits and other alcoholic drinks in the house to spare so why not throw a party and ask everyone to help polish them off? Ha, with no doubt, EVERYONE would be there!

Around 8.30pm, Scott and Chad came to meet me at home and we waited for Dvita to turn up. Strange, she was meant to turn up at my place by 8pm but was still not here. 9pm and several texts and phone calls later AND still no reply, me and the boys gave up and left home and walked over to Karen’s. Was nice to see Karen and catch up (she hasn’t been out and about with the gang much since she started training for her triathlons) – she’s going home to South Africa next week. Awesome! Have a great time there, my dear, and we’ll catch up when you get back!

Caught up with Colm, Kelly, Alice and Debs who also dropped in and flitted around the kitchen chatting with other random guests as well. It was quite funny watching silly antics of some people who had one too many drinks – there was a guy named Paul who would mix up some concoction (and they taste damn good too!) and poured small portions into your empty cup, then gather a crowd to make a loud cheer and down their drinks, and then this cycle repeats itself. Sure made hell of a noise hehe…

“Chad, did you steal that peg from my house??” I asked. Bizarrely, Chad carried a clothes peg in his pocket (I’ve my suspicions he picked it up from my sofa…hmm…) and it became the objects of the newfound guessing game of who got pegged with the same drinking crowd. They REALLY are drunk!

Scott wasn’t kidding me when he said Chad looked like the younger version of Sir Edmund Hillary – he got Chad to turn his face to the side and pull out a $5 note for comparison. Oh my god…the resemblance was uncanny…

Around 12.30am, me, Colm, Scott and Chad walked Kelly home then headed to Alice for a few more drinks. Hmm, I like their Bombay Sherbet best…Colm and I each had one :) Had a bit of a boogie with Scott over at Boogie Wonderland but couldn’t stick around for long as it was packed and felt rather stuffy and hot so went back to Alice to find the boys. Ooo, somebody’s got company…While we were away dancing, two young girls (probably 18-20 years of age) plonked themselves on our seats and starting chatting with Colm and Chad. Scott and I stood around and watched the boys, laughing at our little gossips on what the two and the girls were talking about. Chad must have felt our eyes boring into his head so turned around and introduced us to the girls – hehe! Was quite funny to hear the blonde one ask Chad out loud if I was his gf (was the boring that obvious? I was just trying to listen in to the conversation :P).

Chad excused himself to head to the little boys’ room and had Scott take over his seat. Blondie was rather drunk as far as we were all aware and literally throwing herself at the boys (now at Scott since he has taken over the ‘love seat’ hehe…). The other girl, Brunette, didn’t look that interested in the boys and had this bored look on her face so we didn’t talk much to her but chatted amongst ourselves. Blondie was hands all over Scott and showed rather keen interest (I can tell from the rather ‘forward’ body language). The 2 disappeared somewhere for awhile much to the dismay of Brunette who then came to me and Colm asking where Scott took Blondie to. “Next door to Boogie Wonderland maybe?” I shrugged. We told her to hang out with us for a bit till they came back. Bad enough that she was looking for her friend and then there goes Colm telling her stuff about Scott, like how Scott is such a man and an animal, sex god la-la-la... “What the hell ARE you doing???” I mouthed to Colm who told me not to worry and that he was just helping Scott. Look what you did to Brunette – she’s now frantically texting away, to Blondie, obviously, to which Colm just gave me a “what?” look and smiled gleefully. You naughty devil, you!

Scott popped back with Blondie soon after and the 2 girls were talking at the bar while Scott came over to our table, semi-panicky, asking me and Colm what he should do now since Blondie wants him to go to another club together and things were getting somewhat steamy. Our conversation then went something like this:

“No, I can’t do this, this is not me – I don’t do one night stands, I’ve never done it before and I’ve got a conscience. I CANNOT do this!” he wailed.
“Scott, look – are you attracted to her?” I said to him in all seriousness.
“I’m attracted to her because she’s attracted to me…” was his response.
“Good, so that part of the problem is sorted. Now go to the bar, get yourself another drink and park that consciousness of yours to the back of your head and just go with the flow,” I told him and Colm added his 2 cents in agreement.
“Really? Ok, ok…No, I can’t – I’ll just end up chickening out come the end of the night…” goes Scott and honestly, I could just grab his shirt collar and just shake him. I mean, seriously, he is a guy and who knows how the night will end so just give it a go, dammit (and this is coming from me, a woman).
“Come on, just have fun and see how it goes. Who knows you might like one night stands!” Colm teased and I could just swat him from where I was sitting because it wasn’t helping us in prepping Scott’s confidence for the rest of his night without us. Grr…

Anyhow, Scott did leave with Blondie to another bar and the rest of us headed our own ways home around 2.30am. I have to say the series of events at Alice tonight was rather amusing – the conversations and expressions. Oh, I should have taken my camera out tonight to record the whole soap opera :P Hmm, I would be keen to hear of the rest of Scott’s night tomorrow…hehe…

Saturday, 18 April 2009

Day trip to Castlepoint, Wairarapa (18th April 2009)

I didn’t think Claus was serious about going surfing today when he told me about it as I said goodbye to him at the salsa party last night. He rang me up this morning to say he was heading to Castlepoint to surf. I wasn’t in any shape for surfing (still not feeling well) but happy to tag along for the day trip. He had invited Dvita to come along and coincidentally Chris rang me up in between Claus’ texts convincing me to go to Castlepoint for the day so Chris came with as well.

“Where IS Dvita???” I asked Claus when he came to pick me up around 11am. Apparently, he had been texting and calling her the whole morning but didn’t get any response. I tried to call her as well as we drove over to Chris’ to pick him up – still no luck. We couldn’t stick around town for much longer to wait for her for Claus would miss the tide times and not be able to catch his wave if we didn’t arrive in Castlepoint by 1ish. Oh well, just too bad– we had better go!

Castlepoint is a spectacular site along the Wairarapa coastline with long stretches of beach and a sheltered lagoon providing opportunities for a variety of water-based recreational pursuits, including surfing and fishing. There is also a lighthouse and several walks in this beautiful scenic reserve. I’ve been here twice during my stay in NZ with friends – I think the last trip here was back in 2005? Wondered if much has changed…

The 2-hour drive from Wellington to Castlepoint was pretty cruisy, with a quick stop in Masterton for us to pick up some sandwiches, pies and drinks with us for lunch. Along the drive, we ended up behind a car that had “I AM 138” vehicle number plate. What in the world does “I AM 138” even mean???!

“I know! I know!” went Claus. “It means that the couple likes the 69 sex position AND also swinging with another couple at the same time. 69 times 2 equal 138!” he continued. WHAT????!!!! You naughty, dirty-minded cheek! How did that brain of yours work out the maths equation so quickly and still put a sex twist to it? We all cracked up laughing at Claus’ smart remark. Though I didn’t think the couple in the car look the type who were ‘wild in the bedroom’ when we drove past them but then again, looks can be deceiving :P

We finally arrived at our destination about 1.30pm. Wow, the place looked really different from memory in the sense the facilities and walking trail to the lighthouse were properly done up. Nice! Claus took the car along the beach strip of Deliverance Cove and parked on the beach – so cool! It was a clear day today, making the view absolutely amazing though it was still a tad chilly and windy (and I had my bikini and tied-up sarong on – wrong choice!).

Hmm, really Claus, are you sure you want to go into the water? It looks like a mega 2 metre-tall washing machine out there…

After about 5-10 minutes contemplating whether or not to surf, Claus decided all 3 of us should take a short walk up the nearby hill. You must be kidding me, right? From where we were at the beach, the track to the top of Castle Rock seemed like an impossible feat – SO steep! We somehow managed to walk all the way up in flip-flops (not advisable) past rubbles, grass plains and steps. Took us about 45 minutes to get to the top with me trailing behind taking photos along the way. Hmm, not as steep as I had expected and boy was the hike worth it – we were rewarded with a gorgeous view :) Woah, I wouldn’t advise standing or leaning too close to the cliff, boys…THAT is one really steep drop into the water…

Started our hike back to the car after sitting on top of the hill for about 10 minutes – was too windy. Eeks, the water must be about 17 degrees when I went to test it out with my toes! Honestly, I think Claus wasn’t really keen to put himself into the crashing waves but he’s driven this far so went into the water anyway. Chris and I stayed in the car out of the wind to chat and tried to find the now ant-sized Claus in the water. Couldn’t really see him though. Is he out there?? Some 15 minutes later, we watched Claus walk back towards us then telling us that is was not such a fun surf out there. I’m glad I didn’t end up going into the water with him – would be hell for someone like me who 1) doesn’t know how to surf, and 2) has a past history of drowning.

Back in the car and stopped to walk to the Castlepoint Lighthouse trail. It was a 30-minute return easy walk on the board-walk over the reef and past the lighthouse. A few more photos and time to head home at 4.30pm. Though it wasn’t a beach day as I would have liked, I had fun with my boys, just chilling out together for the day. Photos taken today: http://www.flickr.com/photos/8070917@N05/sets/72157616928827781/detail/

Here are 2 jokes, one from each of the boys, which got us cracking up in the car on the way home:

From Chris:
“How do you tell the difference between bull shit and cow shit?”
What you do is take both shit in your hands and throw it up in the air – whichever stays up is bullshit!

From Claus (this one requires facial action near the end):
A Brazilian man was drawing squares with his finger on the glass of his fish tank and his friend was in awe watching the fish follow wherever the finger went. “Wow, how do you train the fish to do that?” asked the friend. “Well, it is only a matter of who has the stronger mind and the others follow,” replied the Brazilian. “Look, I need to go out but will be back shortly – why don’t you give it a go?” the Brazilian added. Some 2 hours later, the Brazilian returned. “How did you go with the fish?” he asked, only to find his friend opening and closing his mouth like a fish!

Oh, and in case you were wondering what happened to Dvita, she rang me on my mobile at 5.30pm while me and the boys were still in the car on the way home to apologise and said she just work up with a very bad hangover from last night. Tsk, tsk…

Swing, samba, salsa! (15th - 17th April 2009)

Have been feeling rather miserable with this cold of mine – couldn’t sleep well during the night from the coughing and feeling tired during the day. Sigh, all I REALLY want is to have my man keep me company, bringing me hot tea or soup and just giving me TLC, cuddling me in front of the TV. Unfortunately I don’t have a man to call my own yet so no such luck but for me to sort myself out :(

Went to my 2nd swing dance class on Wednesday and this time we learnt the triple step. Of course, we did review the Charleston steps we learnt last week, the rock-step-kick-step-kick-kick-back step move. Felt much better and happier after my class – I learnt something new today and that made me feel good about myself! I can see James beaming from the corner of my eye, watching me enjoy my dance class (kind of reminded me of a proud parent…hehe…). He never fails to ask me after every class if I had fun. Definitely! :)

Chris came over to my place on Thursday morning to check up on me, bringing us a rhubarb tart each and we had them with a cuppa together. Aww, you’re so sweet! It was really nice of him to drop in to cheer me up – thanks, I needed that. You wouldn’t believe this but shortly after Chris left, Dvita popped in, bringing me tomato soup and bread for lunch! I feel SO adored by my friends here…*hugs*…My flatmate, Andy, must be wondering if I actually do any work on my work-from-home day with so many people popping in to see me!

Ah-ha, so there ain’t free lunch in this world, eh? Turned out Dvita was here to ‘bribe’ me with lunch – she was hoping to convince me to go to samba classes with her tonight. Hmm, honestly I don’t feel up for it but ok, the bribery worked. I’ll come tonight…grr…

I’ve been meaning to attend Clo’s samba classes (Zamba Bem) for a long time but have never been able to fit it into my weekly schedule. Clo is one of the top samba teachers and performers (also a great musician and acrobat) in town and I’ve heard many good things about her classes. The class tonight was held in Aro Valley Community Centre and lasts 1 hour and 20 minutes. Cost $80 for a block course of 10 lessons. Was rather glad I did turn up to class - what a workout is was especially for my abs and bum! Several familiar faces were in the class including my friend Kim and fellow salsera, Vicki.

Clo is an awesome teacher, introducing the steps in parts and really nutting out the movements in detail with body exercises to loosen up the muscles and partner work for body isolation moves. Even the experienced dancers (the class is open to all levels so we have a mix of beginner and experienced dancers, and several guys too) felt challenged with additional hip movements they can add to their learnt steps. Me, the beginner, just concentrated on the basics and damn, samba ain’t easy! My legs and hips tire after performing the moves after a while. Hmm, needs more practice to get those muscles working…

I’m so glad it’s Friday! Still feeling all stuffed up in the nose and groggy but it’s Friday – I’ve had enough staying in during the week so went for a drink with James and Dvita at Southern Cross Bar after work. James was catching up with my swing dance teachers, Peter and Becca, so we joined their table to chit-chat while I waited for Sonja to pop in to see me. Haven’t seen Sonja for several weeks now (she had been aboard) so it was nice to catch up and bring each other to speed on the events of our lives.

Oh yeah, the Wellington Singles Club was having their “Thriving Thirties” event at Southern Cross tonight. Ha, you wouldn’t believe it but the organiser rung me up earlier during the week to convince me to go. Cost $55 this time and I thought that was way expensive so didn’t attend (plus I was sick). Wondered what did the $55 cover (and I hear it cost $75 for non-members – what???)…

Left the bar around 7pm for home to have dinner, got changed and out again for the Urban Fusion Salsa Party at Fusion Bar on Taranaki St with Clave Latina was playing at the party tonight. I rounded a bunch of salsa friends to head to the bar together this evening and it was nice to see everyone turning up (it is rather difficult to round up the group to salsa dance these days as we tend to do non-salsa related activities together instead). Cost $15 entry which included a $5 drink voucher.

Hmm…rather strange to be in this bar said to be the first Bollywood bar in town which used to be the old Santa Fe strip club. There was still some strange dodginess about the place – dark and somewhat sleazy? I’m not sure how to put it. Just odd, all in all.

I wasn’t really in the mood for dancing but since I had rounded the gang up, it wasn’t nice to not show up. Had several dances but spent most of the night watching others dance. Claus popped by to see me with no intention of dancing (he informed me prior that he was feeling tired and stressed out with work so won’t stick around for long) but only 10 minutes after arriving, he was up and dancing non-stop most of the night, and then walking up to me with a 5-year-old kid grin on his face. “Happier now?” I teased and he nodded, still grinning. He’s funny – gave me 2 mini Toblerones as a late Easter gift (he finally received his Easter egg in the mail!).

Kind of had enough and felt rather miserable sitting around so left for home around 12.30am. Photos taken tonight: http://www.flickr.com/photos/8070917@N05/sets/72157617012815104/detail/

Monday, 13 April 2009

Easter Holidays in Wellington (10th - 13th April 2009)

In the last 2 Easter holidays, I've always been immersed in the 3-day long salsa congress; this year, I've decided not to partake in the event and neither take a trip somewhere. Well, I don't have enough leave days from work or the funds for another trip. Hmm, would be nice to go somewhere warm and away from the cold weather here though...

Friday was spent at home, cleaning up my room and posting up all my unwanted stuff on Trade Me for sale. I still live by the rule 'less is best' because who knows when I would be moving again and it's such a pain to move when you've got so many stuff! It sure felt odd staying in when most of my friends were in salsa workshops or travelling somewhere...

"Are you already danced out after day 1??" I laughed when Damien suggested we grab dinner and watch a movie after at Paramount Theatre tonight. He's one of the salsa folks that had been in workshops at the salsa congress today. He had initially planned to cook for both of us but the shops were closed being Good Friday and we couldn't get any foodstuff so ended up having dinner at KK Malaysian Restaurant instead. Ooo, it has been such a long time since I last went to KK - let's go! I used to frequent this cheap and tasty Malaysian restaurant when I lived on Taranaki St. Had their Wa Tan Hor (flat rice noodle in egg gravy) tonight while Damien had their Hainanese Chicken Rice. Both quite nice but I still like my Wa Tan Hor served with pickled/vinegar green chillies, which is something I can never get when I order Wa Tan Hor in the food places in town. Boo...

Quick stop at Paramount Theatre to grab our tickets to the movie Gomorrah, one of the many movies shown as part of the World Cinema Showcase 2009, then a hot drink at our supper hang out place, Momo Tea. I tried their hot Taro milk tea with mixed jelly and bubbles - yum! Damien had a Lemon Honey tea that we both agreed was nicer cold than hot. Have to come back here again next time to try their other dishes. Seeing the dishes served to the other tables, the food looked so good.

The movie Gomorrah is based on the Italian mafia world - lots of violence, assasinations, corruption, drug use and the like. A cross between movies The Godfather and City of God really. Interesting but leaves you feeling a tad sad leaving the cinema. Headed home around 10.30pm and was in bed by 11pm. Thanks for the night out and I'll see you tomorrow at the salsa party, D!

Saturday was another cruisy day - went to the gym and did a few errands in town. Around 7.30pm, I caught up with Rachel and gang for dinner at Restaurant 88 on Tory St. This was my 2nd time here at this upperclass Vietnamese restaurant. We were a large group of 10 tonight - me, Rachel, Debs, Alice and her friend, Colm, Ellen, Jemima (Colm's friend who's new in town), Flo and Scott. I wasn't feeling too hungry so just had their entree fresh Vietnamese spring rolls for dinner. Cost $12 for the entree that was filling enough for me as a main. Would have loved to stick around and catch up with the gang more but Colm, Jemima, Scott and I all have tickets to the salsa show and party at Wellington Town Hall tonight (and we already missed 1.5 hours of the show!) so had to leave ahead of the group. Catch up with you folks again soon, I'm sure!

The International Salsa Showcase and Salsa Party cost $55 and free for those who have a full salsa congress pass. This year's show is titled The Salsa Saboteurs, a strikingly original theatrical experience that combines dance performances with the amusing tale of three schoolboys whose affinity for wrecking Salsa events takes them on a trip around the world they would never have imagined. We got there in time to see the Brazil performance where they did samba gafieira, samba carnival and zouk dances. Watching the performers carry out aerial moves in their samba gafieira performance reminded me so much of the days when Helbert and I were practicing such moves. Hmm, pity he's no longer in town and no salsa dance school in Wellington teaches gafieira or aerial moves. Hopefully after this congress, such Brazilian dances would be more popular in town.

To show itself was alright. 50 plus world class dancers from across the world performed tonight, showcasing many different dance styles. I guess most people were really interested in the international dancers' performances, not so much of the theatre which made the whole show felt dragged on for too long. The salsa party only started at 11pm - Scott and I were feeling rather tired and the party hasn't even started yet!

Andrea was back in town for a few days and OH MY GOD, just look at her hair! She had it cropped short in a platinum blonde colour. Very sexy, my dear! It was so nice to see her in person - you've been dearly missed!

I flitted around the dance hall, dancing to leads from out of town and also our own local Wellington boys, catching up with friends and getting cups of water from the water fountain in the main foyer in between dances. It was great to find zouk music playing in the main foyer and dancers showing of their swaying moves on the dancefloor. I would love to learn zouk - looked rather sexy, all those head/hair flicking. I like!

My little black cocktail dress keeps riding up! Probably caused a few eyes popping out and had to put in sexy moves just to pull the bottom hem down haha! Had several awesome dances, where I felt as if zorbed into another world or had an audience watching me dance. How I miss performing...Photos taken at the salsa party tonight: http://www.flickr.com/photos/8070917@N05/sets/72157616640992924/detail/

Caught a ride with Alicia for home when the party ended at 2.15am. That was some 3 hours of non-stop dancing I've done tonight! Wow...I'm glad I came to the party - got to catch up with friends (mainly Andrea) and danced enough to make up for all those salsa events I've not been attending in the past year! Even felt ab cramps at the end of the night - obviously overdid those body roll, crunching and hip movements on the dancefloor. Hearsay that the next salsa congress will only be held in 2011. Must be sad for the salsa enthusiasts since this has always been an annual event. They still have 1 more day of workshops tomorrow and another party - dance your socks off, people!

It sure is quiet at home with my flatmates away...Slept in Sunday and caught up with Adrian around 3pm for a cuppa at his favourite coffee place, Cubita. We are such regulars there that owner John already know our faces and names :)

After coffee, we strolled over to Te Papa to see the Monet and the Impressionists exhibition which was running from 14th February to 17th May. It was the largest and richest collection of Impressionist paintings ever to come to New Zealand and a rare chance to see over 50 paintings from one of the world's finest collections of 19th-century French painting, held by the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. Cost us $15 for adult admission per person to the exhibition and an extra $5 for the audio guide each. Spent around 1.5 hours walking around the gallery, listening to our audio guide (which was like a phone) while admiring the works of these French artists.

Frankly, I'm not a huge fan of impressionist art perhaps because of their faint, shadow and light type paintings, thus not having bold lines or a clear focal point. Still, this was something I've not done before and like Adrian, I'm open to new experiences. Another first for me! My favourite painting would have to be 'Meadow with poplars' - just looking at the painting, I could feel as if I was in the meadow, smell the grass and wild flowers, see pollen flying in the air as the nice breeze blows by. Hmm, very soothing, very calming...

Standing in the gallery just watching people walk by, it reminded me so much of my time in USA where I would spend a whole day in their world famous museums such as The Met. Since young, I've always dreamt of one day being in this particular moment, me all dressed up at an art exhibition in company of like-minded people. I stood there in the gallery in awe and lost for words. I AM living that dream right now. Wow...And in good company too :) Thanks Adrian for having me tag along!

Have you seen the Colossal Squid yet? You should go have a look. Pretty gross really seeing the largest invertebrate in the world, this monster 495-kilogram squid, dramatically lit in its six metre-long tank. Can you imagine how many calamari rings you can make with this fella???!!

I can't believe the long weekend has whooshed by and it's now Monday. One more day of rest before the daily grind starts again. It has been a good and productive weekend for me - I did so much both at home and with friends :)

Oh yeah, I've been working on my photo collage project for the walls in my room for awhile now. Started the project a couple of weeks back as a way to remind me of all the awesome times spent with family and friends both abroad and in NZ. Gives me happy vibes when I see the photos :) Still a work in progress but thought I should share with you what I've done so far:

Photos of my travels around the world

My vibrant life with friends in Wellington

Cool, huh? I think so too :)

Friday, 10 April 2009

More than Bossa Quartet @ Havana Bar (9th April 2009)

Thursdays are my new work from home days but I had to go to the office this morning to buy hot cross buns for the team on my company credit card. It's quite a common tradition in my last 2 jobs for the company to get hot cross buns for the employees the last working day of the Easter week. And giving/getting chocolate eggs too! I had one for all my colleagues, friends working in other parts of Telecom (Colm, James, Dvita, Claus and Adrian) and my flatmates as well. Something small but a nice gesture for the occasion. Plus it sweetens up the short working week ;)

Hahaha, those chocolates I put in the internal mail to my friends had quite a journey - it went half way across town to the main mailroom and back to their offices, with most of my friends working in my building or the building next door. Sure glad the chocs didn't go missing in transit!

My Brazilian friend, Elaine, was performing a bossa nova gig tonight at Havana Bar. Rounded up several friends to come along to the free event which started at 9pm. Wow, I wasn't expecting such a crowd! One would have thought given the long weekend (4 days long), most Wellingtonians would have gone elsewhere. So many friends of mine from different social groups were there enjoying Elaine's singing, chit-chatting with one another over drinks.

Found myself stopping every now and then to cheek kiss, hug and chat with another friend I see in the crowd - Adrian was teasing me that he should get one of those clicker things that bouncers use to count the number of people coming into a bar so we'll know how many friends I stop to chat with in a night. Haha, yes, I indeed know a lot of people - a little social butterfly and miss popular :P To be honest, I didn't expect to see so many friends tonight and was really happy to catch up with friends I've not seen for awhile including the usual gang I hang out with (Dvita, James, Geoff, Colm etc). Felt like a big familia gathering! :)

Havana looked very different from how I remembered it. They removed the dividing wall between the bar and back lounge, making it more 'open' now. The ambience is also slightly different - no longer the dim, cosy Havana Bar I used to frequent on Tuesdays to listen to Carlos or Roberto play their Latin songs back in 2007. Some things haven't changed though - still as packed and busy, and serving their yummy non-alcoholic drink, the Havana Special!

Elaine's gig went on till 11pm. It was awesome and very relaxed - bossa nova, my type of music. Look forward to her next gig! Hung around to chat with the gang that was still around till 11.45pm. As tomorrow is Good Friday, the bar will shut down at midnight and not serve any alcohol. Time to head home for bed! Photo taken with Kim and her mates on my way out:

Thursday, 9 April 2009

Dance, dance, dance (8th April 2009)

James had finally convinced me to attend the beginners swing dance class with his dance school, Full Swing, which started tonight. Cost $60 for a term of 10 lessons for an hour each at Webb St Dance Studios. Should be good fun and somewhat a challenge for me to break away from the dances I’ve learnt in the past. Also, I get to finally dance to my next favourite type of music – jazz!

Full Swing is Wellington's very first Swing dance club, specialising in Lindy Hop style. I frankly do not know what to expect – this would be a brand new dance genre I’m picking up. There were lots of people in my class with some experienced leaders, like James, helping out. The crowd is very different to those in salsa. I couldn’t quite put a finger to it. As with other partner dance classes I’ve attended, the women still outnumbered the men and the class rotates the partners so no one misses out.

I was joking to James at the start of the class that I wouldn’t want to be caught seen here by any salsa dancers – they would tease me and call me a traitor picking up a different dance! Haha, you wouldn’t believe it – part way through the class, I saw friends Christian, Victor and Willy-John walk out from the other dance studio after their salsa workshop and waved to me. Opsie…

Rock, step, kick, step, kick, kick, back step…I learnt a whole new move today! So cool!! Frankly, the dance is somewhat cheesy yet relaxed in comparison to salsa but I had good fun. Look forward to the next class and getting to know a few more people in this new crowd, perhaps even tag along with James to one of their social dance events :)

Back home for dinner and changed into a cocktail dress and out again at 9pm to Shooters Bar for Salsa Therapy’s Pre-Congress salsa party. It is Easter week this week i.e. the week of NZ Pacific Salsa Congress. I’ve decided not to participate in this event this year – not competing and neither attending the classes. Didn’t think it was worth paying some $250 for me to do a few classes plus I hardly dance much salsa these days anyway. Yes, I do know that the next congress would only be in 2011 and have put that into consideration. Well, at least I’ll be attending a few of the parties held in town this week and also catch up with Andrea, who’s flying in from Germany to catch up with us.

Caught up with Scott and friends at Shooters. Haha, these days, Scott and I have a new greeting when we see each other: “Hey baby!” said in a Sean Connery manner. Cute! Flitted around the bar catching up with friends I’ve not seen for a while. Of course, dancing as well. Damn, I couldn’t believe how rusty my salsa dancing has become from the lack of dancing! It felt like hard work dancing tonight!! Had several fun dances with the boys which included Bill showed off his triple spins (rather uncommon to find boys spinning) and Alvin (Auckland salsa dancer who’s moved down to Wellington) pushed my linear dancing limits, pulling out surprise moves at me.

This was a free event with Lily and Christian DJ-ing tonight. Hmm, not sure what the deal was but some of the songs played were not very ideal for dancing and most of us would just linger in the outskirts of the dance floor waiting for the next song to be played. Left around 11pm as I still need to work tomorrow. Photos taken tonight: http://www.flickr.com/photos/8070917@N05/sets/72157616440332989/detail/

Saturday, 4 April 2009

Night out with Colm and Scott (4th April 2009)

I had a steak craving this week so asked my steak buddy, Colm, if he was keen to grab a steak and beer dinner together in town. Yes, I’m very much a steak and beer gal and every so often, I have a craving for a good, medium-rare cooked steak with a pint of beer. And I have to look up one of the guys for steak dinner – don’t know of any girls who share this similar interest hehe…

Met up with Colm at 7pm at The Craftsman on Courtenay Place and had Scott come along as well – had spent the afternoon with Scott and turned out he too is a steak fan. The more, the merrier!

Hmm, I was rather disappointed with the steak tonight. Even Colm agreed. Somehow, the steak served tonight was not as good as our last visit to The Craftsman. I was really looking forward to a good meal after my swim session (swimming ALWAYS makes me hungry). Guess we won’t be coming back here for steak next time…

Around 8.30pm, we moved on for a beer at The Welsh Dragon Bar & Scorpio’s Restaurant. The bar is located on an island between Cambridge Terrace and Kent St in what was once a public toilet. Both Scott and I have never been to this bar and I’ve always been keen to check it out. Don’t know why but my friends and I just never ended up coming here. Upon walking inside, I felt as if zorbed to England. It was a bar like no other in town, very English like those you see on UK TV, and had the sort of ambient being the type of bar round the corner from home where you knew the folks behind the bar and the patrons. All in all a very unique experience for me. I can understand why my friend Bruce (he’s English) calls this his local bar. It reminds him so much of home!

Still can’t quite see how this place was once a public toilet – really??!

Colm invited me and Scott to join him to a small get-together at Fran’s and Mark’s place. The couple had been living in a rented floating boat cabin/unit berthed at the marina for the last 3 months and now have to move as the owners are selling the cabin so they decided to have a moving out drinks organised tonight with a few friends. Living on a boat - how cool is that! It was so awesome to hang out with friends, chit-chatting over drinks and snacks on the floating cabin – we could feel the cabin sway with the wind, floating on the water. Gives a rather soothing rocking feeling which made me feel sleepy sitting at my corner of the leather couch…hmm, I think it was because I’ve had a long day so just feeling restless. Left for home around 11.30pm.

Man, I would SO love to own a nice luxury boat that I could live in once and awhile. Though I have to agree with Scott, I wouldn’t want to do the maintenance and cleaning – we’ll pay someone else to do that and just walk in and out as we please! Dream, one can always dream…ah…

Oh yeah, tonight is when we all put our clocks back an hour – daylight savings ends today and this officially marks the end of summer (and a nose dive into winter weather, like tonight!). Feels somewhat sad…From now, it’ll be months of cold weather, days get dark earlier and wearing more layers :(