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Monday, February 10, 2014

At The River Safari (again)

Well, this time round, the boat ride is opened, so we have a new attraction to look forward to. We had been warned that the complimentary boat ride tickets will run out if you arrive late.
So, as a proper kiasu Singaporean, we went over bright and early to queue for the tickets for the boat ride before we even had breakfast. 1230pm slot secured.
After heaving a huge sigh of relief that we had the time slot we wanted, we head over to KFC for our breakfast before starting our CNY trip at the River Safari.
It was a very very crowded affair at the Safari. Seems like everyone wanted to try out the new attraction. You could hardly managed a decent view of the aquatic animals, much less a photo without people photobombing your shots (and without acting like a selfish b******).
Her favorite animal at the Safari... The manatee. Which she described as a graceful animal in the water...
That does mainly 2 things... Eat and poo, sometimes at the same time.
The shot above was only achieved after more than 1.5hrs of queuing. Despite the fact that we had already secured a time slot for our ride. I can feel the frustrations and disappointment from the tourists that were in our boat.
"What? That's it?"
"We queued more than an hour just for a 5minute ride?"
It was disappointing on so many levels. First, they promoted it as if it was a ride of your life with many intimate moments with the animals. Next, they made you stand and wait in the heat for more than an hour.
Then when you finally sat on the small boat, the so-called river was miserably narrow. The speed at which the boat was moving along was so fast that you only had a brief moment to find the signboard which points out the enclosure you are looking at. In that brief moment, you need to do a few things...
  1. Read the signage
  2. Read the description
  3. Find the animal
  4. Take out your camera and attempt a posed shot with it
Most likely you can do 2 out of the 4 items above in that span of time. Oh yes... Exhibits may be placed on both side of the river banks... So good luck.
Taking a break at the panda enclosure, the best part of the whole safari... As it is fully air conditioned.
The red panda is a lot more active that day, pacing up and down and all over the place as visitors tried their best to capture the cuddly animals into their cameras.
 

And that pretty much summed up our experience at the safari... I do hope they improve the boat ride experience...

 

Wednesday, February 05, 2014

River Angpow

It's sort of a routine for us, visiting the River Angpow during CNY even though it is pretty much the same every year. And not as interesting as it was, as compared to when it was set up near the Padang.
Too much of the China Chinese heritage instead of our own local rendition of our Chinese celebrations.
Did our tour of the must-sees around the floating platform before we walked about to the Uncle Ringo area. The place was very crowded, there wasn't much to see anywhere else in the shopping malls since it was the start of CNY holidays, so everyone probably just thought of dropping by here.

Long queues at the not-so-cheap rides... Can't remember the last time i played bumper cars. The familiar smell of static in the air (from the bumper car cables) are now missing... Seems to be purely battery powered?

How times have changed...

Anyways, Happy Lunar New Year!

 

Saturday, January 25, 2014

COKTY Reunion Dinner

Ever since Benny and Jingyi had their humble home, we have been crashing into their cosy LLC for every other gathering. Comfortable and at a centralized area, it makes for the ideal venue every time we had to think of a place to have our reunions.
The gang arrived pretty on time to help out with the food preparation, though the Tan family had already prepared most of the dinner feast. We only had to eat.
One of the staples at our celebrations... Fruit beer and moscato...
After dinner it was some board games fun while we prepare our stomach for the Lo Hei later. The yusheng set from IKEA was much much more affordable than what you can get from NTUC and it comes complete with frozen salmon and disposable cutlery and plastic table mat.
Finding the right words to say for each ingredient we poured in was a challenge. But we managed.
祝大家甜甜蜜蜜,身体健康,万事都如意...
HUAT AH!

 

Sunday, January 05, 2014

My Brother's 21

Wow... 21 years has passed since the day I first saw my younger brother as a little baby, kinda makes me very old this year. Now he is a lot more of a man than the baby I once see him as.
Birthdays are very mellow affairs in my family, simple cake and lots of home cooked food by mum, that's how we usually spend the birthdays. If we do celebrate them.
We finished the food before I whipped out the camera, so no photos of the good food, but in time to capture the cake cutting and song singing ceremony.
Welcome to adulthood, the rest of the years ahead will fly past faster than the first 21years. Treasure the younger years, though you will probably end up reminiscing the yesteryears eventually when you hit your 30s - 40s. :)

 

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Saying Goodbye To 2013

2013 ended very quickly... in fact, ever since I've started working, every year seems to pass by in a blink of an eye. The daily routine, the monthly cycle, the quarterly processes make your life very mundane and predictable and before you know it, another year has passed.
Of course 2013 had been rather rocky, career wise. Having experienced first hand what retrenchment is about and going through the process of searching for another pasture. Thankfully I landed a respectable job at the eleventh hour and life could proceed as per normal.
2014 would have a lot to look forward to, mainly the house and wedding. Having attended many weddings and seen many different interior design ideas, it is finally time for us to put our ideal into a workable and agreeable plan.
Exciting times ahead.
Traditionally, the last day of the year was spent by the Marina Bay to catch the fireworks at the stroke of midnight. This year was no different.
After stumbling into a random restaurant along Ann Siang area and topping our stomachs, we head down to MBFC to spend the remaining hours at a comfortable spot. Planting our butts 4+hrs ahead of midnight!
Enjoying the random music coming from the stage ahead as crowd slowly start to fill the area, hoping that our neighbors will not be too unruly or smelly. Always a gamble. Thankfully it was very windy...
With some snacks and Taiwan beer, we await the arrival of 2014. This year's wind blew the smoke from the fireworks towards our direction... So the fireworks we were waiting for kind of disappointing.

Nonetheless, happy 2014!

 

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Army Gathering

A gathering for all the guys to get together after a long Friday, kind of a Christmas celebrations before we usher in the new year and to update each other on our lives. Though we have a reservist coming up later in the year, and hit our quota of meals-together-in-a-year in that mere intensive 2 weeks period.

Started with XB's condo for our dinner buffet (which was very pathetic looking considering the price we paid) before adjourning to JX's mansion to waste the remainder of the night away.

 

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

COKTY X'mas

This year's Christmas was spent in the Ye's family new house all the way in the far west of Yew Tee. Been a long while since i was in the area.

The theme for this year was Freezing Christmas, so everyone had to get something related to the key words. On top of that, we had to get everyone a mini gift. So the picture you see above is the whole lot of Christmas presents by the tree.

Lots of fooling around and exploring of his new place before we finally set the table and prep the food.

Everyone doing their part for the dinner...

Almost everyone...

Tried the fried chicken from the air fryer, a healthier alternative to fried food. Delicious nonetheless. Below 2 caught steeling food.
While the rest were chilling outside, the two ladies were busy doing the dishes, keep up the good work!

Taking a group shot before we commence our mini gift exchange, quite a messy arrangement as everyone just wanted to grab their own mini gifts.

Then like little kids, we sat about in a circle and unwrapped all our gifts to see what goodies hid in them.

At close to midnight, we had our Christmas tiramisu, which was a really nice dessert after our dinner. Not the usual logcake though. After which, it was more presents again, this time for the main gift exchange...

And there you have it after plenty and plenty of gift exchanging, and Avengers board game, we settled in for a movie that Benny recommended and Weiting downloaded. And we sat by the sofa trying very hard to stay awake.
Guess we are not that young anymore, staying up is no longer an activity we can do so easily.

Nonetheless it was the usual fun gathering that we have together, wonder how it would be when everyone starts to have their own place and children... Should be quite chaotic...