Saturday, 28 October 2006

有朋自远方来!

Took two days of leave to play host to Jens and Eric. Woke up early on Children's Day to fetch Jens from the airport. We met Eric at the hotel; he arrived a short while ago by train. It had been three years since we met!

mf: Eric, you put on some weight!
Eric: Mean!
Jens: You look the same..

Gee, and I thought I lost weight since then.. Bad karma from being mean to Eric :p

Our first stop was to refuel with dim sum, marking the beginning of three days of decadence.. The first time we went to Liaison (or Liaisons?) in Oxford for dim sum, Jens was frowning at the thought of eating chicken feet but when he tried it, he loved it!

We walked around the Tanjong Pagar and Chinatown area where we visited the Chinatown Heritage Centre (I like but no photos) and found this:



More recently, I happened to walk down a spiral staircase at Scarlet Hotel cos the only lift broke down.. I like spiral staircase, pretty, but it's not too fun to walk though..

We walked all the way to the entire (really!) City Hall/Suntec/Esplanade area, passing by the bridge whose name I forgot - the one that divides North and South Bridge Roads - and took this picture:



If you look carefully, you would have seen that the buildings on the right are a bit crooked.. Think it was something to do with Jens's camera cos I'm pretty sure these buildings are straight!

It was a short day as they were tired from the travelling and the walking. When I parted with them after dinner and was waiting for my train, I bumped into Jo and CS. Thought it an odd coincidence: Jens came from Germany, Eric from KL; Jo is working in KL and CS is German.. Anyway, key is I got to see and touch Jo's tummy! Six months already, how exciting :)

After breakfast at a hawker centre the next day, we went to ACM cos they were flipping brochures and found something interesting. Of course ACM is interesting! I like too :) But it wasn't opened yet when we got there!! We left ACM and were walking along the river when we saw the police bring up a dead body ~.~ How scary.. We promptly left for Orchard..



This was all over Orchard Road. By Kusama Yayoi who was also the one who did the Stairway to Heaven I posted earlier.

Somehow I like the red and white polka dots, so happy :)

Spent some time in Borders and Kinokuniya where they bought some books and gifts. Eric found "Men to Avoid: A Survival Guide for the Romantically Frustrated Woman".. I could only remember one type of men to avoid: men who read girls' books like this!! Oh, Eric.. *shake head* We split our sides laughing, dropped the book and left :p

Jens wanted to try fried kway tiao so we went to Food Republic for king-sized servings and king-sized prawns! I didn't have it cos wasn't hungry but promised to treat myself to it the next time (which was a few days later :p)

Checked out the Opera Gallery, saw some interesting pieces by Salvador Dali there. But I was attracted to this and Jens took a picture:



I'm going to pin this somewhere to remind me to never allow myself to balloon!

We had gelato - I made up for my usual Children's Day treat :) - before going back to ACM in the mid afternoon but I was too tired to walk so I sat in the lobby while they explored the museum. Chatted with a PRC lady while waiting - disrupted my nap but she was quite interesting and inspired me to think about what I would like to do ten years from now..

Trigger-happy outside the museum cos it's me :)



And that's us!



We were beaten but we bravely carried on to Little India for the lights. Had some weird prata and I decided that Jens must try to the real stuff! We cabbed to the Upper Thomson one for dinner #2 :) And there was this foot reflexology place nearby so we went in to nurse our poor feet though Eric opted out. It was slightly painful for me, a regular, but Jens didn't even flinch! Was the uncle kind to him? Hmm..

It rained on the third and last day. We tried to do the Biennale route but were trapped in the Chinese temple for a while. I picked a chiam :p Hey, I'm starting to believe in this cos this chiam and the lot I got in Asakusa last year actually said the same thing!

Sent Eric to the train station before sending Jens to Changi. Jens brought me some souvenirs from home - so happy! Lovely calendar prints of Cologne and Cornwall complete with a feminine touch in the form of an EDT - danke! :)

Was talking with Jens about our countries' low birth rates and how some like the Nordic countries had TFR of 1.8. We hence parted:

mf: In case we meet only three years later, take good care!
Jens: By then, we'll have 1.8 TFR!

:p

So nice to see them again, seems like yesterday when we were mugging in the library, running programmes and codes in the lab, having ramen at Edamame, cruising the motorways in Cornwall.. Sighs.. Old already la :p

Don't know when I'll meet Jens again - Germany is damn far! - but I'll be going to KL next March! That's me, planning for trips so far ahead.. In fact, I've decided to go to Japan in next Sep for Miki's wedding, even before my Japan trip this year has been confirmed!!

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