Hari Raya 2017

26 Jun 2017 – SIN, A Food Paradise For Me

Sun: wishing all Muslims Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri, thus ending a month of fasting. According to the Hijrah calendar, Hari Raya falls on the first day of the 10th month. It is a time of forgiveness and a time for strengthening of bonds among relatives and friends, not just for the Muslims but for everyone.

Really do like Nasi Padang/Malay food, but today am just too tired without much appetite, that too shall pass 🙂 Pix are downloaded from one of my favourite food places, Glory on EastCoastRd. Missing Sue’s pineapple tarts (my pix). This is what I like in&about SIN, the integration of the different cultures especially where foods are concerned 🙂 🙂 🙂

Mon: public holiday and all is quiet at 0500hrs. Out dark&early for a walk to check out TEL/MRT constructions (completion date 2024!) before getting grocery at the 24/7Giant and coffee@my regular MP Coffee&Drinks, no need to even tell them as they get my ice-coffeeS$1.10 started when they see me 🙂 Being Mon on top of a public holiday, many of my regulars are closed.

Tried another Chai tow kway/Carrot cake 菜头粿 and for S$3 it was OK. Garnished with some Glass PrawnsS$5+calamansi, cilantro, spring-onions made it into a delicious fancy dish for less than S$10 on the new place-setting. Welcome back to affordable fresh local foods&herbs. The prawns were excellent and crunchy after cooking for a few mins and cooling them immediately on ice.

Tkx to Inessa for dropping by and for getting me out for durians – if not for durians, would have been quite happy to stay indoors in the comforts of the AC with the books and piano.

Feels like in a sauna every time I step outside, even a few steps to the elevator!

As it turned out, had a good afternoon eating our way down EastCoastRd. YongHuat MeeSua now Alibabar located at the corner of EastCoast&JooChiatRd is still as tasty&yummy as ever. KimChooKuehChang is always a good place to visit for Peranakan handicrafts&snacks. Good luck to Inessa for her next adventure and experience with another new overseas job.

Qatar 2017

24 Jun 2017 – Qatar Airways

Wed: tkx Mette for dropping by to say hi&bye. Had a simple outdoors, lunch enjoying one pretty yellow rose and the berry blooms+the cherry tree which none of these I will get to taste. Mette leaves for Spain tomorrow and I for SIN, safe travels to us both. #6 had a Bday party@his daycare while May & I had dinner@Bicks.

Thu: bright and early to catch the first tram (0519hrs) into town for the Xpress train to the airport. Thought that there would be enough time to grab a hot-dog but turned out that the plane was leaving 0830hrs instead of 0930hrs…

Full 6+hrs flight on EconomyC from OSL-DOH sitting between 2dads and across the aisles from 2moms each with 3kids, making it a total of 6kids ranging from infant-6yrs!! Thank goodness for 3movies (ComingThru’The Rye, Hidden Figures&I DanielBlake, not that I will remember any of them!) and good ear-plugs 🙂

Arr on schedule into DOH and am sure glad that I upgraded to BusinessC from DOH-SIN. This is the first time I have treated myself to this luxury and after OSL-DOH, it was most welcome. All my travels so far are on budget or the lowest possible fares, thus lousy flight-times and long layovers, this time 10+hrs…

@The BusinessC Lounge in DOH airport- good supper of chicken, seafood, beef-stew and tabbouleh. What a nice surprise to bump into CheaKok whom I have not seen for over a decade, had a delightful chat with him. Of course working in Qatar with company-paid travel expenses, he is travelling to SIN on the 2010hrs flight while the SIN flight I am on departs 0240hrs. No worries, in no rush and after a long hot shower and snooze in the quiet-area, was feeling tired, but blessed and contented.

Another full 7+hrs flight, even in BusinessC from DOH-SIN with the comforts of a BusinessC passenger. Definitely can easily get used to this but unlikely that I will pay S$484 to upgrade again!

Fri: TGIF – arr into SIN T3 20mins later than scheduled after 14+hrs OSL-DOH-SIN flight and 10+hrs layover@DOH. Took me less than 5mins thru’ passport control even though the thumb-print is not always successful on the auto-scan.

IMG_7939IMG_7941#36Bus (less than S$1) back to my pad in this nice not so hot cloudy weather. Always enjoy seeing the colourful bougainvilleas on the ECP. And this time even a couple taking their wedding pix at the ECParkway. Welcome back to my birthplace.

Can any man or woman choose duties? No more that they can choose their birthplace, or their father or mother – George Eliot

Sat: Happy Birthdays to nephews John (Chun) in KL, Clement in SIN and student from HI/ USA, Huang.

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Bus to Les&Ivy but taking a different route changing@Parkview. Time for pix while waiting for #7bus.

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Beautiful blooms on this short walk from the bus-stop for a crab dinner with good wines to compliment the foods. Tkx to Les&Ivy for dinner and to MeiPin for the ride back to the East.

 

Bærums Verk Dagene

20 Jun 2017 – In Beautiful Weather

Sat: safe & sound in OSL after 8+hrs flight from FLL and nearly 2hrs in line at the passport control@the OSL airport. Kinda of expected this as the previous 2visits were the same! You do not have to stand in the long line if you are holding EU or Norwegian passports or if you are Norwegian residences. But all worth it to see #6

Lush and green from the rains which fell the past few weeks. Blue&strawberry flowers in bloom but will not have the chance to taste them.

Sun: Happy Father’s Day to all Fathers. Bærums Verk/Bærums Ironworks is a village in Bærum in Akershus with a pop of about 8000.

It is located on both sides of the river Lomma. Iron ore was found in these areas the 1600s and a foundry was built near the farm of Wøyen, further downriver from today’s Bærums Verk.

Had an outdoor lunch@Lille Cafe and the seafood open-face sandwiches hit the spot; #6 was not complaining about his huge soft-ice with toppings.

Today you will find more than 50 shops, restaurants, workshops and galleries with handicrafts and art in this village.

A small metal ladybug for the plants here and a lilac-coloured glass♥for my hand-blown glass collection.

Mon: movie date with #6@Saga – Captain Underpants, the First Epic Movie is the pick for elementary schoolers with the potty humour. Based on the popular book series by Dav Pilkey, the story follows two prank-loving best friends who hypnotize their angry principal into believing he’s Captain Underpants, the hero of the boys’ comic books…

First time sleeping thru’ most of the movie at a full-price ticket with 3D-glasses on! only to be periodically wakened by #6’s delightful giggles 🙂

Sooo good to hear that – this sweet and innocent child is growing up too fast.

The knowledge that makes us cherish innocence makes innocence unattainable – Irving Howe

Tue: Bjørn does not believe in planting plants if they do not produce edible results, fortunately the neighbour’s garden is quite a feast to the eyes where flowering plants are concerned. A classic symbol of grace and elegance, the pink rose is often given as a token of admiration and appreciation, so admiration and appreciations to the neighbour’s garden.

A lovely walk to Eivind, my GP’s clinic@Pilestredet Park to drop off some packages, this time taking another route to see new sites –  Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences (HiOA) is Norway’s largest state university college@Pilestredet. Sofies gate 1 – used to walk by here when May was living@Krafts gate and liked the archway opening into a green courtyard

Eivind was not in today as he is now semi-retired and busy travelling. Have known him since our student days in Dublin! Will try to catch up the next visit. His pix credit is to him.

Thanks USA Family&Friends

16 Jun 2017 – For This Visit

Thu: my father LAM TinYue would have been 106; L&M’s paternal grandfather John HALD III 94 today. Such noble gentlemen are not easy to encounter.

0700hrs XC practice has been re-scheduled from the neighbourhood back to the high school due to some issues with the Clearwater HOA

Good to see nearly 50 turned up for this breakfast practice,

while #4&5 were enjoying the sand at the long jump pit with the long shadows in the early morning sun.

After practice, headed into town to send the gang to their VBS. Breakfast@The Original Pancake House****good coffee&food. As usual had doggy-bag my omelette.

@Trenholm Plaza, Forest Drive, the shops are more upscale and the selections@The Fresh Market are impressive. 40%sale@Loft – have not bought a dress for a while and  something that fits to my liking too.

Spent the rest of the afternoon doing laundry and packing – my least favourite thing to do! Tkx to Linn&Jeff for dinner@Fuddruckers my favourtie burger place where I can order a medium or well-down burger.

The first time at a Fuddruckers was nearly 30yrs ago when we moved from CA to FL. It claims to have the World’s Greatest Hamburgers. Have not tried all over the world but so far Fuddruckers is my favourite. Had a sip of the beer, OK but still not a beer drinker. Got it as the name was rather intriguing! The evening storm was a relief after the hot humid weathers.

Burning the mid-night lamp to sort out my purchases and to see how much the backpack can take! NO it does not get easier no matter how many times I have been thru’ this, but it is a dark and stormy night…

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Fri: TGIF. Tkx Jeff for taking time to meet with us for breakfast@Cafe Strudel****located in the historic Mill Village neighborhood of WestCAE.

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Good biscuits and interesting atmosphere where one can purchase the artworks hanging around. Appreciations to Linn for getting me to the airport in time.

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Guess what I bought for US$29 🙂

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Here we go again: CAE-ATL-MIA-FLL-OSL-SIN with 5days stop-over in OSL.

Uneventful and on times DL flights from CAE to MIA. Drive from MIA to FLL airport was rather stressful on a Fri rush hour traffic with a couple to bad accidents on I-95. Interesting cloud formations&trees on this drive which manage to divert my mind.

On a full plane from FLL-OSL.

2017 Vocational Bible School VBS

15 Jun 2017 – And Summer XC Practices


Mon: @Shandon Baptist Church where the theme for VBS is Star Wars. This year both #1&2 are volunteers to help out and #3 will not be there. With both their long hairs, #1&2 would have made perfect Princess Leia but with XC practise starting at 0700hrs, they will not have the time to braid their lovely long blond hair.

May The Force be with them all.

Linn & I did some shopping while the kids were at VBS. Always managed to spend money@World Market. Difficult to resist these beautifully packed soaps and do need a change of different leafs from the old place-mats in SIN, also found some napkin holders to match with the kitchen’s greenery. The cork designed wine gift-bags are neat too.

#3 is staying the night with Cindy so as to catch their early flight to CA tomorrow morning. That means I will not see #3 until next year. Cindy takes one of the grandchildren when they turn 10 to anywhere in the US (excluding AK&HI), and this year is #3’s turn.

Tue: full day for the family from XC practice to VBS. Took #4&5 for a swim on the lake this beautiful late afternoon while Linn was busy with the coaches for their CPR Certifications.

Beautiful blooms of Crepe Mrytle (tkx Jan for the name) on the trees in the neighbourhood – the Tiger Lilies are out!

Summertime, and the livin’ is easy
Fish are jumpin’ and the cotton is high… – George Gershwin

Distrubing news from SIN – sad to learn about this considering how hard Mr&MrsLKY worked to build SIN and raise their family, and now just reading&watching his children carrying on like this is disheartening. Above 3pix downloaded.

http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/pm-lee-denies-claims-made-by-siblings-8944026

I also noticed something in the air. The rain was over. The air was fresh. One era has ended. A new one has begun. Majulah Singapura – Bertha Henson

Wed: why does anyone wants to read the news when these are the morning headlines on BBC and similar headlines on other news channels? Such a downer for today.

A top US Republican was among five people who were shot and wounded by a gunman during baseball practice in Virginia.

At least six people have died after a huge fire raged through the night at a west London tower block, and police expect that number to rise.

Feeding #3’s pet frogs is a nice break. Was teasing him about Chinese liking to eat frog-legs, but he was not too worried as these are no bigger than my thumb-nail – bringing back memory of a 21st Century Fairy-tale from many moons ago…

https://amylamsg.wordpress.com/2009/07/20/21st-century-fairy-tale/

Village Square Theater

12 Jun 2017 – Second Samuel

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Sat: #2 is better and off to a Bday party in the afternoon while Cindy took #4&5 to the movie Beauty&The Beast. Had hardly any sleep last night!! and also have seen the movie recently, so stay in to rest.

https://amylamsg.wordpress.com/2017/03/05/beauty-and-the-beast/

The Village Square Theatre, Lexington’s Community Playhouse, is owned and operated by the Lexington County Arts Association. Used  as a movie-house in the 1970s. Was told that it was also used as some auto show-room but unable to find any links to confirm that; this painting in the lobby does not even look anything like the present building.

It was a simpler time in the late 1940s, especially in South Georgia and specifically in a sleepy little town.  What had been called the Great Depression was quickly fading into memory. The war had been won, the election was now over, and ‘Give ’em Hell Harry’ was still president. It had been an exciting time for sure, but the folks in Second Samuel were ready for things to settle down and get back to normal. Except—this was the summer Miss Gertrude passed away, and deep dark secrets were about to be revealed. Nobody could have imagined how the death of one sweet little old lady would turn the entire town upside down, leaving everybody in Second Samuel wondering if anything would ever be normal again!

Delightful & entertaining performance with a touching message about life and friendships in the Southern treasure. Tkx Cindy for this.

Tonight’s clouds and sunset are for Gators’ Fans. Dinner@LittleChina Buffet. Food – nothing to write home about, but the a wild selection at reasonable price, even a senior discount.

Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky – Rabindranath Tagore

Sun: Linn is on the road (3hrs there&3hrs back) to pick up the hiking gang@Ammons Branch Campground NC so that they can get to the car at their starting point@Burrells Ford SC. This year’s hike is about the same as last year except that they will hike further to ABC and not have backtrack to the car.

https://amylamsg.wordpress.com/2016/06/12/boozers-tree-service/

Family safe and sound home together and had a good hike with the best weather ever. VBS starts next week.

A Family Of Bankers

9 Jun 2017 – Happy 8Bday Sophie

Mon: not a pleasant day, throwing up all day and feeling lousy. Age takes its toll and the body is reacting to nearly a month of US bottled and boxed foods. That too shall pass…

For families and whoever may be interested in the Kwong Lee Bank history, here are the latest updates corrected by Wikipedia (mistakes pointed out in 2009). Repeated image above was forwarded by Daniel Yiek some years ago. Considering the background of the LAM banking family, only 2 so far in the orange generation are in banking.

I just like to keep my money in the bank; I’m not a big risk-taker. I don’t know anything about the stock market… I stay away from things I don’t know anything about – Wayne Gretzky

Tue: feeling lethargic, stomach still queasy and no appetite but at least not throwing up – good way to diet. Took a breath of fresh air with a few blooms of the Gardenias, Clematis&Azaleas in the garden this morning. Will these be the last blooms for this visit?

#1&2 have started their XC practice, #2 baking a key-lime pie, #3, 4&5 on screen-time, Coach Hall and #1 are zzzz while I made a trip to Walmart to get #5 Bday gift.

Wed: saw in this wimp.com posting as to What Rush Hour Looks Like Around The World. Downloaded 3pix (where in this case they say more than 1,000words!) from many others for contrast – Beijing’s traffic, São Paulo subway and

if I have to be stuck in any rush, it will Ireland.

Took #3 for a treat and to pick him a reward for keeping his room neat and clean. A successful XC coaches’ dinner hosted by Linn while the teens were out and the younger ones busy playing.

Thu: another glorious morning with perfect 60s°F temps, an eventful morning when Jeff lost the rental car’s keys. He did an extensive search all morning, but #2 located them in 5mins.

From Linn  see what I have to put up with hahaha. Jeff is still the Jeff I remember from FLschool days 🙂 A brilliant absent-minded son-in-law with a busy day ahead getting ready to take #1, 2&3+Zuno camping&hiking this weekend.

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It is full moon tonight and the children are are out enjoying the fireflies on this beautiful evening before #4 turns 8 tomorrow! Blessed to be in a neighbourhood where the children can play safely outside even after dark.

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Fireflies pix downloaded – have not seen that many of them since my days at Lake Cumberland KY many moons ago.

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Fri: Happy 8Bday to #4. Still remember so well that day when we were searching desperately for her and found her asleep in the laundry basket – she was 4 then!

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Today she nearly wears the same shoe size as I do – time flies.

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TGIF on this glorious morning and safe hikes to Jeff, #1&3+Zuno (#2 is feeling queasy and might have got what I had) who will be camping for the weekend – thus the early Bday party for #4 last Sun. #1, the teen will be behind the wheel until they get to the Interstate!

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Another party by the lake with even more kids. By 1100hrs I lost count with 16kids??+8moms (including 2Norwegians, Anna&Jenny)!! – I too will call in sick together with #2 hahaha 🙂