Island Weekend

Tonight we will be making our way to the island of Sardegna. It is going to a long 12+hour ferry ride and another 130km+ drive before we even get to where we want to go. It is going to be a loooooong weekend. I am super excited though. I have heard so much about the beauty of Sardegna and also how freaking expensive it is in summer. It is after all the playground of the rich and famous in the summer. I think the destination that we are going for is Porto Cervo.

I heard that the people of Sardegna, commonly referred to as Sarda have special plane and ferry ticket prices. As a concession for them as part of Italy and to allow them to have more access to the mainland. Somehow, we managed to get the cabins for our night stay on the ferry as our other friends going along with us is originally from Sardegna. Lucky us!

I am bringing along my camera and hopefully I do some justice to the beauty that surrounds me! πŸ˜›

Toodeloos and have an amazing weekend!!!

P/s: My FIL just informed me that we should have bought tickets for Olbia instead of Porte Torres. Olbia is only 40+km from our destination. OMG!!! we are going on motorcycle too!! but hey! It will be fun! It has been some time since our last road trip! Wheeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!

Skin Care – Lancome

Pretty mundane entry. I just wanted to rave about a line of skin care that I have been using for years. I am not paid for this. This is just my own tried and tested love for the products.

I first got introduced to this brand Lancome back in 1998 when I first joined Singapore Airlines. Every other year, SQ has a contract with different make up brands to teach their skin care and make up classes. For my year Lancome was the company. I don’t really have a skin care regime going on even when I was in school. My sis did. She would take care to wash her face properly and put on moisturiser which probably explains why she has such porcelain skin and need minimum care even now. All I did was just wash my face. I did not even bother with moisturiser. Also, I hardly had make up on.

So, my first formal introduction to any kind of skin care and make up was through this classes. Being new to it, I bought most of the items “recommended” and over time left out some and acquired others. I realised that I didn’t need to spend the amount I spent on make up from them. I could get cheaper alternatives elsewhere where eye colours and blushers were concerned but I found out that for make up removing no one tops them. Personal view of course. Now more than 10 years on, I still only use their make up remover and toner, eye make up remover and eye cream. Even through my lean years (in Uni where I supported myself), Lancome was still the only product I splurged on. I realised that you can use ANY type pf make up as long as you have a good base it doesn’t matter. and one of my good bases is Lancome!

eye cream

eye cream

Here are the pictures of the items I use. These pictures are taken from the official Lancome website. http://www.lancome.it. Just raving!

You will realise that there is no mention of moisturisers and face cream but that is for another entry of another amazing product!

Make up remover

Toner

facial wash

eye make up remover

My Generation

My Generasi

Click on the link above and it will bring you to a youtube video on my generation’s version of Facebook, Ipad, PSP and so forth.

When my friend posted this link on my FB page I had so many thoughts on it. First thing that I thought of was, “wow! these are grown ups and how did they find primary school uniforms to fit them?”. In Malaysia, we haveΒ  uniforms for our schools which is the same uniform for ALL students in Malaysia unless you are going to a private school, who then have their own uniforms. We have dark blue or some call it navy blue pinafores with white shirts for the girls and for the boys, the same blue pants or shorts with white shirts for primary students. Elementary school for the US school system. In our secondary school, high school for the US system, the girls have light blue or azure blue as some call it, pinafores and white shirts and military green pants with white shirts for the boys. Each school then have their own take on the uniforms for their prefects or librarians. For example, my school colours are red, so as a prefect, my uniform, apart from the blue pinafore is a red skirt, white shirt, red blazer and red tie. While the librarians in my school have bright navy blue skirts, white shirts and blue tie. So, anyway, while I commented on that, my friend told me that they probably had them tailored. Good point! The girls looked good in the uniform. πŸ™‚

Next, it was so so wrong to see a primary school kid with so much hair on his legs. I personally think he should have opted for the long pants. It marred my enjoyment of the video just a little bit. A teeny weeny bit. Come on, if any of you saw the video, you would think the exact same thing!! Don’t lie! πŸ˜› Then, the games were right on! We did play all those games. We collected bottle caps furiously and oh, how we hurt ourselves sometimes on the edges of the caps. Still it was fun! The five stone game is usually not made up of stones. I remembered I sewed my own using rice as the insert. Then, the constant badgering to our mothers to buy us whole huge packets of rubber bands to make that rope. And wow could we jump! I remember right after our national UPSR exams, classes were a little slack. We were allowed to bring in board games and such to school to pass time. Our school provided congkak. This game still bring backs loads of memories everytime I see one. The last, I saw one was at an International Tourism exhibition and I think Malaysia’s stand had a congkak and some people playing it on display and an awesome teh tarik man making tea back in 2008. I came back to “visit” my own country’s stand everyday for a dose of teh tarik! πŸ˜› I was there for a Thai hotel.

Every year without fail, there is a book which we called autobiography book that will circulate nearing the end of the school year. Especially so if anyone is changing schools, moving away or changing classes. That was our version of Facebook. Hmm…I wonder where is mine now? I have changed a few schools AND moved to another town. Wouldn’t it be fun to look through it again. We write the silliest things in it. First a full biography complete with the name, birthday, address, birthstone, zodiac, favourite colours, foods, games etc…

In the end, the video summed up my primary school very well! Thank you JinnyBoyTV for bringing me down memory lane to such a simple life then. Most of our games were home made and readily available. It never runs out of power, never needs to be charged, easily transportable and costs next to nothing. Anyone can play and the more the merrier!!!

And just to scare everyone AND give an idea of how our uniforms look like I posted a picture of myself here. I even attended a Uni where i had to wear uniforms. Saves me the trouble of thinking of what to wear. LOL!

High school

Running outside is hard…

Because it was such a beautiful day, warm and sunny, I decided to run outside today. My first in at least 6 months. The last time I tried, I nearly froze my brain from the icy sweat enveloping my head. Oh, boy was it hard!! Ok, I have been out of action of sorts for some time now. I had a really good momentum going for a while and then I went on treatment. Which meant I had to be really careful not to jump, run or over exert myself. So, out the window my momentum went. But I was still motivated enough to keep my spirits up and the moment the treatment ended, I jumped on the treadmill and ran for the next for days before I had to be back on treatment. Dang!! I was so happy to, to be back running. I didn’t want to be away too long before I lose my new found motivation.

Again, the whole cycle started. No running, jumping or over exertion. The best part of the treatment this time was an allergic reaction to one of the meds prescribed! I started having rashes under my breasts and it slowly and surely crept all over my body and eventually giving an almost first degree burn. Okay…it may be exaggeration on my part but my skin was like scales on fire, rough and itchy and patchy. It really looked and felt like I got a sunburn in the middle of winter and only on the parts under cover!! Oh…it was no joke! I don’t want to put my picture up here but if you saw it you might even be shocked! I looked like a huge, red chilli tomato if there is ever such a thing. I am also peeling like a snake changing its scales. So much so, that M says there is skin everywhere!! I am like…what can I do? It just falls off. I am like a shedding dog too. πŸ˜› The treatment was more injections and a cream that made my itch so bad I couldn’t sleep. Before it, I could for 2 whole weeks when I had the rash.

Anyway, I did get back on the treadmill when the treatment ended last Wednesday. Wanted to run another time on Friday but we had family and clients over till late in the office. So there goes the running. Weekend was family dedicate time and we also took my MIL to the nursery to buy new plants for her amazing balcony. I sneaked in some of mine too and now my balcony is back to beautiful flowers! I just need to re-pot them soon. πŸ™‚ I went to run outside and being the sudden genius that I was, I decided to run along the road and not just around the office. Expand my running area. NOT A GOOD IDEA! First, there were cars everywhere. It didn’t help that the smog and dust didn’t help with my laboured breathing. Next, because of the cars, I could not get my momentum going. I had to constantly watch out for cars and scooters weaving in and out! I gave up running on the road and went back up to around the area of my office.

By then, I was not really enjoying my run anymore. I ran and walked the rest of the 4.5k but I was constantly feeling out of sorts. I think I have been running on treadmills too long and need to get out more often and hit the pavement. It could also be because of my inactivity that is causing this. I am determined not to let this bring me down. I shall try to run outside again tomorrow. Do you think I can manage a weak 5k?

Since the weather is getting better, I am thinking maybe I should take the niece and go swimming or get her interested in tennis. Hmm….I do feel like I would like to start playing tennis again. No tennis partners here though. The tennis courts with a wall to practice with is on the other side of Genova. At least the ones I know of. There is a tennis court right behind where I live but you need someone to play with and I don’t know anyone who plays tennis except a 7 year old. One day, if I pick up enough courage, I might just walk in the guys who play there sometimes and ask to join them. Someday…for now, I have to continue running outside. πŸ™‚

 

My BIGBANG theory

I am no talking about the intellectual creation of the world Big Bang Theory. I am talking about the Korean boy band BIGBANG. I stumbled upon them last year while “catching” up on my fill of the Asian drama series. I was watching one of the Korean dramas and I think one of them had one of their songs as the OST. I liked it enough to go search for it and that was how I came to know of them. Browsed their other MTVs online and got hooked for more and in the end I even bought one of their albums!! πŸ˜›

I even searched out some of their movie or drama series debuts just to watch their acting and maybe hear their non singing voices. I am such a curious cat. Why does it even matter, I don’t know either. LOL!! You can’t actually say, I am a fan either. I can’t really remember the names of the members except for T.O.P because WHO in the right mind has a name like that?? Again, because of my curiosity, I went in search for the reason behind his name. Came up with nothing! Maybe it is something like the Thai phenomenon of having nicknames because their names are too difficult to pronounce or remember. I swear, in my 3 years in Thailand, I still do notΒ actually know theΒ  names of some of my uni mates. I always call them by their nicknames which is what they introduce themselves with. Unless you make an effort to find out their real names, you would probably never make the connection (like I didn’t) between their given name to their nicknames. I got requests in the past on FB with names I have never heard of until I clicked on their photos and go….”so THAT’S your real name”. It is shameful on my part, I know. Sorry guys!

I don’t go gaga over the fact that they won some awards, or that they are having a concert somewhere near that I want to ABSOLUTELY go to. But I am curious to meet them in person, like I am curious to meet Benedict Cumberbatch in real life. Though I have met the Godfather of Hindi movies Amitabh Bachchan, a huge favourite of mine!!! I was awestruck when I was introduced and shook his hand. We even took a group photograph to remember the day. My friend commented that that was the first time she saw a forever chatty Ann speechless! *shy* hehehehe! I was speechless! He sat behind me throughout the screening of Sarkar which was a tribute to the American movie the Godfather. I did not understand a single word as it was a pre-screening of the final cutΒ  without subtitles of the movie before it hits the big screens, for Amitabh, who was filming his new movie in Bangkok. A friend of mine translated the entire movie to me. Bless her!

I digress, as usual! Ok, back to the topic. I don’t find them attractive and their fashion sense is not my taste but I do like their music. Why? I have no idea. I like listening to them. Do I actually understand Korean? Nope! I speak about 6 languages (including Chinese dialects) but not Korean. It would be great if one day I can actually speak the language but for now, I have to be contented with just their music. Maybe what happened to me with Eros Ramazotti might happen to me with BIGBANG. This needs explanation.

Somehow, and some time back, who knows when exactly, I fell in love with this Italian singer’s music. This is way before I even knew my husband or any Italian for that matter. There was another singer too but he was less well know internationally so, it was harder to find his albums. I was listening to him and could possibly sing along to most of his songs without understanding a single world that is being sung. Fast forward a few years (how many exactly? again I don’t know) and I was standing in a clothing store in the south of Italy and Eros’ MTV came on. I stood there staring into the small little screen completely in awe because I could now understand what was being sung. It was a moment of revelation!!!

So who knows, someday I might be able to understand Korean. The way life works, it might have something prepared for me that I will end up learning another language. Or I might meet them like I did Amitabh. One can hope, right? πŸ™‚

P/s : Added their photo in the end just in case you were wondering who they are. πŸ™‚

Remedy-ing my withdrawal..

Though in my last post I was lamenting about not being able to blog, I have not found anything interesting enough to blog about the last few days. Well, maybe also because I was busy.Β  Got into Singapore last Friday and immediately I went over to Singtel to find out how come the data plan that I have activated didn’t work. Yes..I was still dealing with the “no internet” withdrawal. I found out that it was because my sim card was a 2G one and I need a 3G one for it to work. In order to get a 3G one I have to change numbers as mine is a prepaid sim that I have been using for the last 3 years is just that, a prepaid sim, If I want to keep the number, I have to sign up for a post paid. After mulling it over for about 10 mins, i decided, no one really knows my number except for family and close friends anyway, and I can always update them on my new number. So, I queued up again only to be told I need my passport or my EP card to register the new prepaid.Β  Guess what I didn’t bring with me??

I do have to say though, that when I called the customer service line of Singtel, they were very helpful and efficient. The moment I found out that I could activate the data plan even for prepaid cards, I wanted to jump and shout for joy!! Yes, I was that bad into my withdrawal.Β  They told me to sms a certain number and follow the instructions. I followed the sms instructions and activated my HTC for it. It was all over and done with in less than 2 minutes. How cool was that?? But, after switching my HTC on again after the recommended time, it still didn’t work. I was crestfallen. So dramatic, right? I have drama in my blood….bwahahahahaha!!! The rest, you know, as I have explained above.

So, because this aunty here forgot her documents, she had to get it done only the next day as when she got back to the hotel it was already 5 and she had a dinner appointment at 7 and was too knackered after sleeping too late the night before, waking up early to get to the airport, she decided to get some rest. why am I speaking of myself in the 3rd person, I don’t know. Just wanted to do that. oooo…it deserves a mention too that the KLIA ekspress has free 4G YES internet connection in its trains. Found out just as we were pulling into the station. it was a bittersweet revelation.

The next day, Jen and Syahrul arrived bright and early and I dragged them both on the most important errand with me. They were lucky however, that we passed the 313 shopping mall first, so I left them there while I went to get my internet life back on track. Took awhile but it was done!! The first thing I did was to check my Twitter. πŸ™‚ I am back online!! Yeah!!! *punching the air*

I proceeded to twit and check on other updates. Didn’t manage to twit a lot but the important thing was that I am back online. Then the weekend past in a blur of great company, great food, shopping and a wedding dinner of an ex-colleague. I had fun!

I am now back in Italy and here I have no problems with my internet connection. Happy…happy!!! πŸ˜€

Strange Uneasiness

Sounds funny but it really feels like that. I was never one to be really connected but since I came back I actually feel lost. I mean, before I occasionally connect to my Facebook whenever I am online and do not feel a need to have internet connection wherever I go but since getting an android phone and connecting to the net via twitter and blogging I actually feel like a lost puppy without it since I came back to Malaysia. My local number is a postpaid line that has no data plan activated because though it is my number, I use it only when I am in Malaysia. There is really no point to go through all the trouble of activating and then de-activating the data plan after 5 days which is the average that I am back.

I signed up for twitter back 2009 but since Vodafone Italy didn’t support twitter yet, I never got round to twittering. Just recently, mid of last year, and the androids were getting more popular, Vodafone started supporting it. I activated it on my phone once I got my HTC. Since then I have been slowly twittering away. I have it on my Blackberry too but app is better presented on my HTC.

I got in last Friday for my sis’ wedding. if you read my last blog, you would know that I have been traveling and with my sis’ wedding, I have been quite busy. Through all of this, I felt the lost of not being able to tweet more than no internet connection. It is so alarming!! I never thought I would get hooked on tweetering. So scary!!

Now, I have to work on this growing addiction to keep it in check!

On another note, I am watching Asian Potion on Hitz Astro and there is a boy band singing (didn’t catch their name cause I was typing this) that reminds me so much of the KPop and JPop bands out there. I am a little surprised first because they are a Malaysian group another is the fact that now all the boybands or groups are all starting to look alike throughout SEA. Is it only me or is this really happening. One thing though they do dress better and have better physique. They make the suits look good. πŸ˜›

Ps: strangely, I even missed blogging. I felt I needed and wanted so badly to blog. What is happening to me?!?!?!?!

Happy Women’s Day!

image

Today is international Women’s Day. So happy Women’s Day to all the women out there! It is your day so enjoy!

Mine started with an alarm buzzing at 7.50 am. Considering we only went to bed at 1 and we had a looooooong dat the day before, I was suprised I could even get up without being all grumpy. But, there is also a story behind that. This year, unconsciously (i say this because I didn’t make any new year resolutions this year nor thought about it) I am trying to change my mindset. A paradigm shift if you will. Smile and nothing is ever as bad as it seems or made out to be. Stress will become peace of mind just by changing my mind. So I am working my mind this year… Zen…

Sheraton gave me a box of chocolates in conjunction of the day. Though i am not a chocolate fan, who doesn’t like to be given beautiful chocolates! That is my box features here. πŸ™‚

In an hour I will be in my third leg of the 4 countries 2 day marathon. The last destination being Malaysia! I am going home!! Shoot! * doing a jig*

Technically I am not doing that jig. I am in the lounge and people would be wondering what is this crazy woman doing. LOL! So I am jig-ging in my heart. πŸ˜›

Also, this is my first time blogging from my mobile via HTC mobile app. Curious to see how it would look. The one on Multiply via email works beautifully.

Toodeloos people! I is boarding nowwwww! Whee!

Side note: interesting how we all become kids when excited. Whee! *skipping to the gate*

Back on the travel wagon

Tomorrow will be the start of a 3 day 4 country travel whirlwind.

We will head out tomorrow morning at 5 am for Milan Malpensa Airport which is about 2 hours away to get there in time for our 9.35 am flight to Barcelona. We have an appointment in Barcelona at 5 pm. It is a little early but we can’t find any other flights that is more convenient for us without having to airport hop our way there. Will probably wile our time away at the amazing Escriba cafe and checking out the Prada in town. A friend has asked me to help her buy a bag and this provincial “city” that I live in does not have a Prada exclusive shop. The nearest one is an outlet which carries past seasons and the other in Milan. So I will help her search for it in Barcelona. In might even work in my favour as things are a little cheaper in Spain AND their taxes are way lower. 8% for food. In Italy every freaking thing is 21%. It was 20% before. They just increased it end of last year. I better not get started on the STUPID taxing system here. no wonder everyone tries to avoid paying taxes and I mean EVERYONE!

With such a bad economy enveloping the whole of Europe and Italy struggling, guess what? They increase the electricity and gas bills by 4.5% and 3.7% respectively. That is not the only thing that they are increasing. Petrol prices are doing a limbo rock. Highest so far is €2 per litre and now it is hovering at €1.8 per litre. There are so many more things I can comment about. It amazes me why they think that raising already high taxes will solve the problems. I shall blog about this amazing phenomenon from my point of view another day. remind me.

I digress…sorry.

Back to the topic at hand. After the appointment, we will catch the 9.30pm flight from the f@Β£$%^g Terminal 2 Airport of EasyJet (we fly in at Terminal 1) and reach back to Milan around midnight. Stay the night and catch the next flight out at 11am the next day for Singapore. Hopping on the very next flight when we get in for Kuala Lumpur. After that, we shall slowly make our way to the centre and join the family for the upcoming celebrations!! πŸ™‚

I can’t wait!! though I already feel it will be quite tiring.

I haven’t really been flying the last 2 months which is quite unusual but I am now back in the game! I have things all lined up for work and for pleasure almost every other week. There is another trip to Jordan in the pipeline. Should I or shouldn’t I? Locked in Boracay for this year! Our annual girly trip is booked!!! whee!! *excited squeel*

Signing off now! Dinner with the in-laws.

Toodeloos!!

Under the weather..

I thought I could blog a little more before February ended but one little mistake and I got struck down with a full blown fever, flu, sore throat and cough. The mistake I made was not covering myself well enough IN a restaurant and caught a chill from its drafty interior. An hour lunch cost me 5 days of weak ass moping around. I am definitely grammatically wrong there but who cares. That was how I felt at the tail end of last week. It was bad enough I was on other medications, I had to add Panadol (paracetamol basically but a Malaysian cure-all miracle med)Β  and some flu meds to help me breathe at night. Then there was the cough to battle with which I managed to keep under control with loads of fluids.

The sick week was not totally wasted. I was commisioned or rather asked by my SIL to crochet 20 little confetti bags for my niece’s upcoming communion. I had made 2 sample pieces earlier last week and had her choose either of them. She loved them both and couldn’t decide that she asked me to make 10 of each. This is my first sample piece. I re-did this many times. Not the main pouch but the finishing touches. Deciding on the width of the ribbon area, the flower or type of wave at the top. I scoured the books for a suitable alphabet design and settled on this 2. An “S” and an “R” on the other side. Her initials. The other sample piece took me a little longer because I had to get used to the glitter rings that are placed randomly of the spools I have bought which I thought were perfect for the pouches. Oh, how I regret that decision. But since I bought them and will most probably never do anything else with them besides these pouches, I decided to grin and bear with it and finish those 10 pouches. After a while, I got the hang of working with this thread and in 2 hours with the TV on in front of me, which means I am constantly distracted, I can finish 1 pouch. So far I am 7 down for the glitter thread and 3 more to go! Then it is on to the other 9 for the normal thread which will be a breeze!

Besides these, in the last 3 weeks I finished a long overdue project which I started more than a year ago and launched into 2 others which I finished pretty fast. The latter 2 I gave it to my SIL as I almost never keep any of my crochet and she can appreciate my colourful works. The first one I gave it to my MIL as she loves crochet though she does none herself but she likes the traditional colours, ecru, white, off white, pearl.

The green and yellow ones are finished but not ironed. Aren’t they lovely? *bangga* πŸ™‚ I still have another piece of the first one to make as my MIL wants them for her bedside tables, of which she has 2. It is like the other piece I made for her the last time. She wanted another one identical for her sofas as headrests.

I will end the post with the photos of the birthday gift I made for my MIL a few years back. The head rest only, not the pillow case. πŸ˜›

Ps: this entry took me more than 2 hours to finish. I am writing this at work so I keep getting interrupted. And, luckily for autosave, i didn’t lose the whole entry when the cable got pulled off my com and it died on me. :O phew!