I'm always running around!! (4th - 6th September 2008)

This has been a crazy week of running around from one place to another, covering for 2 colleagues who are on leave (on top of my own job), help teach gafieira twice this week and catching up with friends in between. Crazy, crazy!

Thursday, 4th September 2008: Caught up with George for dinner and drinks after my last bellydancing class for the term. Would have loved to continue on to the semi-intermediate class and work on those ab muscles but as I will be travelling quite a bit in the coming months, it wasn't worth paying for the term and only turning up to 3 classes. Oh well, will join the following term next year.

George is a regular at Kazu Yakitori and Sake Bar - I think he said this was his 3rd or 4th time here this week! We chatted and laughed over sake, sushi and a few sticks of yakitori before heading over to Kaffee Eis for ice-cream dessert. Hmm, I love the ice-cream here...I usually go for pistachio but decided to try something different tonight - tiramisu. Yum! :)

After a full belly of food, we decided to rent DVDs and headed back to my place to watch them. Hmm...neither of the 2 DVDs we rented were of interest so we ended up talking all sorts as the DVD played. I have an opened bottle of rum - bought it for cooking not personal consumption so was more than happy for George to help himself to some.

Oh dear, George, are you alright? I think he had sipped a bit too much rum and was feeling giddy when he stood up to bid me goodnight! He nearly collapsed on me!! Oh, it was funny...The brave boy didn't want to take up my offer for a lift home - ok, suit yourself. I sure hope he would be alright as he has a morning lecture to teach tomorrow...

Friday, 5th September 2008: Caught up with Hew for dinner tonight at Le Metropolitain, a French bistro on Cuba Street. Hew had been here several times as her friend runs the bistro - it was a first for me and I'm always up for new things!

I had fun trying out the yummy food we shared. We started off with an entree of escargot (dish of cooked land snails) in garlic butter. I've always wondered what escargot would taste like - I had imagined the texture to be similar of shellfish/sea snails and I was right :) It had a chewy bite and tasted quite grassy (well, they are land snails so of course they tasted grassy!). We even got tongs and fork to eat our snails with grace...hehe...Photo of the dish taken on my mobile:

Our garlic butter escargot to share

Empty shells and snails in our tummy...yum...
I now know why French women are so slim - the main meals here were small (good enough for us but don't expect the standard Kiwi-size serving). I had steak while Hew had lamb, both really lovely and just exquisitely French. Of course, we wouldn't leave without having their creme brulee and we ordered only one to share - it was massive, the size of a saucer and not the small cups you would normally get in most dessert places but it was SO GOOD! Nice food and good service, this is a place for those special occasions, not one that you would go frequently :)

After dinner, Hew joined me at Hawthorn Lounge where I caught up with some salsa friends, Pip, Scott and Ken for a drink. Urgh, the weather was really crap outside - windy and just pissing from all directions. I need a drink to keep warm!

I'm such a 'difficult' woman, ain't I? Just wouldn't have mojito made with white rum so had the bartender made mine with Brazilian cachaca :) Hmm, very nice...

The five of us split into groups and went separate ways - Hew bidded us goodnight to head home (poor thing has to work Saturday morning), Ken and Pip headed to Salsadrome while Scott and I caught up with Kalwant and friends for more drinks at the Tasting Room located at the end of Courtenay Place. It has been a long time since I came to this bar and surprisingly, it was rather quiet tonight. Hmm, guess the bad weather has kept most people curling up under covers at home :/ We laughed and chatted over drinks - would have loved to stay on but I had a swim lesson in the morning so bid the gang goodnight and left home around 1am.

Saturday, 6th September 2008: Good thing Helbert decided we call off snowboarding this weekend - Ron, him and I had thought of heading up for the day but the weather was pretty terrible this morning. I didn't even want to get out to swim lesson! Just wanted to hide under my duvet...

Caught up with Anouk and family for coffee at Southern Cross Bar in the afternoon. Haven't seen them for quite some time so it was lovely to catch up. Oh, and Amaya has grown so much, crawling everywhere and keeping mummy on her toes! Photo of her taken on my phone:

Aww, isn't she just adorable? :) You know, it is quite rare to find cafes in town that cater for kids - I've only seen 2 to date which are Southern Cross and Caffe L'affare, both having toys and seating areas suited for families with children. Great for me to catch up with friends like Anouk who has kids!

Helbert popped in briefly to say hi before the two of us headed over to Flight Centre to sort out our travel arrangements to Samoa. We had talked about going to another Polynesian island in August earlier this year but had no further talk about it since then so I thought the trip was off. Well, obviously not when he said to me this week that we are heading to Samoa during the week of my birthday! What???!!! That's like in 2 weeks!!! This is the thing with Helbert - you have to be spontaneous and go with the flow. It was all a last minute trying to get things organised and for the first time, I left the trip plans with him to sort out - I'm usually the planner but this time, I'm taking it easy and not question much what was organised. It would be a surprise! Thankfully my manager was ok with my short notice to take leave so it was all go for me :) Ah, can't wait to get away from this cold weather, a break from all the commotion in my life here, and just bask in the nice warm sun, sipping my cocktail at the beach. Bliss!

In the evening, I went over to Vintage Bar on Taranaki Street to celebrate Rachel's 30th birthday. It was a themed party where guests had to wear black, white and/or red. Oh, that's going to be easy for me since my wardrobe is mostly black and red :)

I've never been to this bar before and it was quite a cool underground bar, hidden in one of the alleys on Taranaki Street. I had invited friends George and Damien to join in. It was great to catch up with friends I've not seen for awhile like Colm (and he came in a kilt!) - was flitting around the place talking to everyone and checking up on the boys to see if they were ok since they only knew me at the party. Looks to me they were fine mingling with the others - great! I had a bit of a boogie but couldn't keep up till late since I've had a crazy week of running around so left for home around midnight. Damien was really sweet to walk me home - thank you! Photos taken at the party:

Blonds do know how to have fun! Photo of Kim and birthday girl, Rachel

Rachel and Colm

Kalwant, me and Dvita

Tim, Amyliz, Karen and Colm

Neighbours and workmates, Dvita and James

And here's one of George

Just me and Chris


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