Monday, October 31, 2005

The boat

There is a boat
Which is seeking to find its place in this world
There seems none
So it departs to a blank space to sail its own path

Music fills the night

The next concerto that is playing is so lovely that it would melt my heart and fill my ears with soulful music. Maybe you would have to listen to it to know how beautiful it could be.

What's Playing Now:
Bruch - Violin Concerto No. 1
Yehudi Menuhin on the violin, with the Philharmonia Orchestra,
conducted by Efrem Kurtz.

Some background regarding this concerto.

I read that Bruch had put in a lot of efforts into writing this concerto. But it is all worthwhile. The concerto will be here to stay for generations to delight our ears.

What's listening: Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto in E minor, Op. 64

On the CD Player:
Felix Mendelssohn - Violin Concerto in E minor, Op. 64
Yehudi Menuhin on the violin, with the Philharmonia Orchestra, conducted by Efrem Kurtz.

I do not know why, neither can I describe why, that I would find this violin concerto easier to relate to compared to Beethoven's Concerto for Violin and Orchestra in D, Op. 61 which I had just listened less than an hour ago.

The first movement opens so beautifully. The second movement is lovely that it moved my heart. I comparatively did not like the third movement as much. It sounds too buoyant at the moment for a melancholic heart. But surprisingly, my ears still delight to that lively exchanges that take place between the orchestra and the violin. Perhaps I could say, concertos are never a one-man show. The orchestra has an important role to play too.

Some extra readings if you would like to know about this concerto.

A Celebration of Abilities

In Singapore.

The Disability Awareness Public Education Campaign 2005 is on from 27 Oct 2005 - 4 Dec 2005. I like the theme: A Celebration of Abilities: Disabled does not mean unable. Well-said.

Find out more about this by visiting:

The upcoming event will be held on 5 Nov 2005. Looks like there will be performances by talented persons with disabilities at the HDB Hub Mall Area from 2.15 – 3.15 pm. For details, read:

Coolies and back in time

These sculptures may take one back to the passages of time. Have a glimpse of how life might have been for the coolies and other people back in the colonial period, when Singapore was still a colony of the British empire.

The best I know, the word "coolie" might have been derived from the Chinese word ku li which literally means "bitterly hard (use of) strength". These people ought to be given due respect. They worked hard to earn their keep. They endured hardships so as to earn their living. They toiled, but they have also contributed.

The merchants too have contributed in their own way. Perhaps those who have a kind and generous heart had lobbied lots of support from the commoners? Anyway, Singapore started as a trading port. Merchants had their special roles to play then.

This site gives some background information about coolie:

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Low tides and boats

Boats could be likened to sculptures made from wood and other materials. They float and find their place on waters. When the tides are low, I don't know if boats would still float. But I suppose they would, so long as the water has not dried up. The water is their friend which they float on.

Where's the guiding star?

A life that feels blank and bored
When it shouldn't be
The dread is to just live day-by-day
In pure routine

Where order and structure
Used to have placed thing under control
Now fail to give room to flexibility
Spontaneity is left killed

Am sulking
But hate to be poor example
Have the choice to do otherwise
But fear it were pure pretence

Have went out to seek
For that guiding star
That could tell
A purpose and meaning one could be alive for

Some clues
But otherwise futile
So looked within
But no wisdom to see anything

At times frustration
At times lost
Out-of-place in this world
For one doesn't seem to fit

Maybe it is just insistence
To be in constant quest
To find some answers to questions
That many left unanswered

Ju Ming's sculptures

I chanced upon these sculptures when I was strolling about near the Fullerton Hotel yesterday. These are sculptures by Ju Ming. For more information about Ju Ming, you may wish to visit:

These sculptures are from Ju Ming's Tai Chi's series.

In this post, I shall attempt not to describe too much using words. Let the photographs tell the story. Enjoy these works of art.

Statues and sculptures series

Statues and sculptures may also have significance in telling us stories about the heritage and history of a place. In other instances, they may be works of art to be admired.

Let me attempt for the next couple of days to post about my walks around various parts of Singapore. The theme that I shall focus on would be statues and sculptures that I have sighted on my walks. However, if I do divert to other themes, I hope it would not lead to too much a protest.

Statue of Sir Stamford Raffles. For more details, read: Walk along Singapore River: Statues of Sir Stamford Raffles.

I may post a few of the posts on my other blog, so do check it out from time-to-time if you happen to be interested in this subject.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

What's Happening in Singapore: Museum Open House

Next week in Singapore, there will be two public holidays occurring in the same week. These two public holidays may fall on different dates in different years because the dates for these two public holidays are calculated based on calendar systems different from the one that is commonly used.

On 1 Nov 05 is Deepavali Day (Visit this site to understand the signiicance of Deepavali). On 3 Nov 05 is Hari Raya Puasa (Visit this site for more information).

On the 1 Nov and 3 Nov, there will be free entry to several of the National Heritage Board museums. These are: Singapore History Museum, Singapore Philatelic Museum, Singapore Art Museum, Asian Civilisations Museum, Empress Place and Reflections at Bukit Chandu.

Aside from free entry, there will be several programmes and activities lined up at each of these museums on those two days to enrich one's experience at the museum. Please see below:
In addition, there will be free entry to the Malay Heritage Centre on 1 Nov 05. I figured that the Malay Heritage Centre will be closed on 3 Nov 05 for the Hari Raya Puasa. I have not been to the Malay Heritage Centre before and am contemplate a visit there soon.

I read that there is an exhibition on Ramadan and Hari Raya Puasa at the Malay Heritage Centre until 22 Nov 05.

An exhibition on Ramadan and Hari Raya
Presented jointly by the Central Singapore CDC and the Malay Heritage Centre, this exhibition focuses on the key aspects of these 2 special months in the Muslim calendar and explains the meaning behind the rituals, customs and practices. Among the key exhibits will be a costume section which showcases the colourful and intricate Hari Raya clothes.

Hope this post have given you folks some idea what you could do for the upcoming week if you were to be in Singapore.

Words from yours truly: It can be fun and enriching to get in touch with the cultures and heritage that exist in one's country.

Tropical sun can make one melt

The best time to be out to take photographs is ironically the time most people won't want to be out. In yours truly's humble opinion, the best time to capture the warmth and vivid colours of the tropical region is when the sun is very bright until the sun turns a nice hue of blue. But that is the kind of weather that many people may not wish to be outdoors if they were given some choice.

One would need to be well-prepared to be able to withstand the heat from the scorching bright sun. That heat can make one feel as if one is melting. If you had read my post titled Tips to survive the Singapore's climate, you may have some clue that it would be helpful to wear light-coloured clothings, wear a pair of sunglasses, bring water and put on sun-block lotion. In addition, I think it might be helpful to wear a cap to give one some shades from the sun.

However, the rewards to be outdoors during such weather can be numerous. Firstly, I think the bright sun can provide very good natural lighting when one takes photography outdoors. Usually, the photographs that turn out will have a nice tropical feel to it. Secondly, since few people would bother to be outdoors under such weather, one could have most of the space outdoors by myself. I may sound like a hermit, though I am not. I just need some space to retreat to my inner world. Thirdly, a bright sun makes the skies look a brighter hue of blue and that could bring some delight to one's eyes compared to a dull grey skies. Here, I qualify that I like dull grey skies too, provided that the skies are extremely grey yet with a sad character.

Singapore River, near the Esplanade Bridge.

So these rewards help to get yours truly willing to bear the hot tropical weather. It can be hot until one needs to have drinking water readily available to drink to prevent dehydration. The trick to prevent one from feeling as if one would melt anytime soon is to take some shelter under the shades at least every half-an-hour.

By the way, if I had portrayed Singapore as a very hot country, it isn't quite so. On days when there is breeze and the skies is cloudy, the weather can be very bearable. In fact, lovely. I might have been one of those masochists who insist on going out right under the scorching sun, just to take photographs or to sketch. Bear with me please.

Belated Happy Birthday to Brother

Yesterday was the birthday of one of my brothers.

Though I rarely have the chance to have meaningful conversation with this brother of mine. He is quite a nice gentleman, I could say. He lends a help when it is very needed, and he is basically a fillial person. Somehow, we hardly spend much time together as siblings. It must have been our schedules don't quite fit. Furthermore, I must have been fiercely guarding my own private space to have lend him much chance to. But well, he's a nice fellow and a good friend in his own rights. Happy Birthday Brother.

Here's what I got on his birthdate.

Brother's Birthdate: October 28

Your birth on the 28th day of the month (1 energy) adds a tone of independence and extra energy to your Life Path.
The number 1 energy suggest more executive ability and leadership qualities than your path may have indicated.
A birthday on the 28th of any month gives greater will-power and self-confidence, and very often a rather original approach.

Unlike much of the other 1 energy, this birthday is one that endow with the ability to start a job and continue on until it is finished.
You may prefer to use the broad brush, but you can handle details as well.
You are sensitive, but your feeling stay somewhat repressed.
You have a compelling manner that can be dominating in many situations.

Friday, October 28, 2005

What's Happening in Singapore: Featuring Harmonica Masters

Yew Hong-Chow & Yellow Pine Trio's concert
Held on 13 Nov 2005 (Sunday), 7.30 p.m., Victoria Theatre

Tickets at: $20, $50 and $100 each.

An informal dialogue session with the masters will be held at 9.30 p.m. on the same day.


Some time ago, I wrote about the Yew Hong-Chow & Yellow Pine Trio's concert. Earlier, I was visiting its website and saw some updates.

I think all who have a love for harmonica playing should consider this concert. Music-lovers who wish to gain a greater appreciation of good harmonica playing should consider this too.

For more information, please refer to:

A blog's worth

I saw this from Msfeline's and Lion's blog.

The strange thing is that when I tried doing this test yesterday, my blog was worth $0. But when I did it today, my blog's worth went up. I wonder if the increase in my blog's value has anything to do with the two posts that I have put up last night. That was the only difference I could think of.

My blog is worth $13,548.96.
How much is your blog worth?

Does anyone have any clue how this is calculated?

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Stormy weather

Lightning is flashing almost once every minute.

Since I am indoors, I find less pain in the stormy weather. The concrete walls will protect me from the wet weather and the impact of the storms.

Listen out. To Nature's orchestrations during the stormy weather. Hear the interplay between the thunder and the rain. And watch how the visual effects of the lightning come in-between. The rhythms made by Nature are so inventive, I am reminded that Nature is perhaps mother to all music on Earth.

I take delight in melancholic tunes when I am having the blues. I take fascination too in stormy weather, and I would more so, when I am feeling blue. But today's mood is not that of blue, but a white blank one. Maybe the stormy weather may just fill up the gaps in the blank white. That sound of a drop of rain hitting the rain, that roaring of the thunder from far away.

Take a moment to listen and to experience.

I can't remember all my Science lessons, but I vaguely remember that the energy discharged during a thunderstorm can help turn Nitrogen in the area to fertilizing compounds that would benefit the growth of plants. Well, may I hence say storms also help give life too?

Took a step forward

My course on planning and evaluating programmes continued today. Today's topic is on understanding and applying the SWOT analysis framework as well as the program logic model.

S.W.O.T. analysis briefly means an analysis of an organisation's (internal) strengths and weaknesses as well as the (external) opportunities and threats that are present for the organisation. Actually I think programme planning is more complex than many person may mistakenly think.

Anyway, I must have worked my brains hard enough that I felt mentally drained after lesson. After lesson, I walked to a nearby MRT station to take a MRT train. I slept on much of the journey. The brain must have been in need of a recharge.

I decided to check out if there were any music school in this neighbourhood called Toa Payoh. Thank goodness that I woke up just in time to alight at the right stop. I was barely awaked when the MRT train reached Toa Payoh station, but I managed to alight before the train moved to the next station.

After getting down the train and getting out of the MRT station, I walked about near the bus-interchange and soon found out that there is a Music School nearby. I made enquiry regarding Grade 6 theory lessons for adults. It has a weekly time-slot that could fit my personal schedules personally. I decided to ask for some time to think over whether I could commit to theory lessons in the long run (at least 3-6 months). As such, I proceeded to the foodcourt on Level 2 for dinner while taking time to contemplate over the issue.

I studied Grade 5 theory independently on my own. The most discouraging part is that I had not quite confidently understood concepts related to cadences, harmony and modulation. I am not sure if not being a key-board player makes it slightly more challenging for me to udnerstand these concepts.

Anyway, my main motivations to take up theory lessons were to improve my understanding of those concepts and to improve my general appreciation of music. Hopefully having a good foundation in music theory would help me play music with greater understanding and appreciation, and would enable me to play with greater sense of musicality.

I have been very impressed with my double bass tutor when he could look at a piece of music and he could analyse it and interpret how it should be played to sound musical. I could play and if I were to sound musical, I think it was largely intuitive and not because there was much conscious analysis and understanding behind.

The complex in which the music school was located was pretty accessible. It should take no more than 30-40 minutes to travel there from my workplace after working hours. There is a foodcourt nearby where I could conveniently have my dinner if I were to take up lessons there. The charge for the lessons is quite reasonable. Furthermore, it would take about 20 minutes or less to travel from the music school to my home. More importantly, there was a time-slot that could fit my general schedule.

Of course, there are risks involved. Firstly, whether I could be disciplined and committed enough to study and do my exercises so that I could optimise my learnings when I am taking the theory lessons. Secondly, I could not be sure if I would like the teacher's style of teacher. The first is a challenge but it should be achievable if the curriculum is well-paced. I am quite disciplined to do work so long as the workload is achievable. Anyway, the second is not quite within my control and I just have to go for the lessons before I know how things would go. I keep my fingers crossed.

You might have guessed, I registered for the theory class. It will be an individual class held on Thursday's evenings. I could only start on 24 Nov 05 so the staff calculated the pro-rated fees that I would have to pay. Well, looks like I have took a step forward. I hope all would go alright, and I could have an enriching time learning.

Wishing for health

Today felt productive mentally. I was out-of-office today to attend training that is related to my area of work. In particular, it is on planning and evaluating programmes and services. The training got my mind working pretty hard. Anyway, I like this kind of mind stimulation. It is fun to think about an issue from different perspectives. Hopefully I can work out how to apply what I have learnt to my practice.

Of course, I would have appreciate a little more breaks for my mind to quieten and to internal process the learnings. Since there were only two tea breaks and one lunch break throughout the entire course, I decided to treat myself to Ya Kun Kaya Toast just before the public forum starts. The public forum ended quite close to 9.45 p.m. But I think it was well spent.

Now I am back home, not feeling quite well because I seem to be having some early symptoms of a flu. My nose somehow feels twitchy as if it would sneeze anytime. I just took a Vitamin C pill in hope to boost my immune system. Wish me health please. Now I better rest soon. Take care.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Put on thinking caps and voice out

I was privileged to be given the opportunity to attend a public forum this evening.

As best as I understood, this public forum is intended to get professionals input from the various human service providers so as to provide the Ministerial Committee on Low Wage Workers with insights on the challlenges faced by low wage workers and on how to improve the prospects of children in low income households so as to work towards breaking the cycle of the permanent underclass.

It is encouraging to know how this public forum could lend a platform in informing policy-makers of the needs of the lower income families and individuals. It was stimulating for my mind to think deeper on the issue and to hear people's views on the issue.

Let me attempt to extract and summarise some of the issues and points that were raised during the forum for mere wish to get you thinking and to encourage you (especially Singapore citizens) to participate in the forum if you have something to say:

  • A need for affordable childcare services to support parents from low income families to go to work.
  • Looking into making social enterprise initiatives that can tap on the skills and enterprising spirits of people (especially who are low-income) viable.
  • Looking into speeding up the time required to process and approve genuine applications for childcare financial assistances.
  • Making training more available and accessible for low wage workers so that they have opportunities for upgrading. (e.g. scheduling trainings at the times of the day that are more accessible for workers who work extended hours.)
  • Explore providing more train-as-you-work opportunities.
  • Changing mindset of employers and also those of employees.
  • Need for sufficient childcare services for children who may present some behavioural or developmental challenges.
  • More comprehensive and integrated efforts and services for low-income families so as to support them to work while ensuring quality care is being provided to the children from these families.
Below are links which you may visit to learn more about the above-mentioned discussion, and to lend your views and insights. You may wish to read at least briefly yet sufficiently on the topic before posting your views so as to give more value-added contributions.

Discussion Forum:

e-Consultation Paper:

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Spinning about

When the colours of the rainbow spins
It gives a blank white
Circling about
Staying within and can't get out

Like a non-stop Merry-Go-Round
Only that there is nothing merry
Life seems to have nothing else to offer
Except plain routine

As such questions
Why stuck am I?
Working too hard to answer
May not lead to an answer
Just depending on faith
To get closer to that answer

Monday, October 24, 2005

Tips to survive the Singapore's climate

Singapore River



Singapore has an equatorial climate, which is warm and humid all year round. Rain is felt throughout the year.

- Taken from

Some thoughts came to me when I was having my walks the past few days and nights. I thought that I could write about how to survive the Singapore's climate when one goes outdoors for a walk. Here are tips recommended by yours truly to survive walking under the Singapore's climate. Read on if you find it credible:

  • Bring along a pair sunglasses. - This will help keep off much of the glare from the tropical sun.
  • Bring along an umbrella or a poncho. - There are times that it may rain. An umbrella and a poncho can shelter one from the rain. It can be fun to be walking in a drizzle. For those who don't like to carry an umbrella or a poncho, then please take efforts to plan your route wisely so that you can find shelter easily even if you were to be caught in the rain.
  • Wear comfortable clothings, preferably of a light colour. - That will help make you feel comfortable even if you had to be out under the sun for a long time. Dark coloured clothings tend to absorb the heat, so light coloured clothings would be better.
  • If you are vain, please wear sun-block lotion with good UV protection. Even if you are not, consider doing so if you plan to be out in the sun for long periods of time.
  • Wear comfortable shoes. - Then you will find yourself more able to walk longer distances. But well, comfortable shoes may not be a necessity if you have lots of money to hire taxis. Actually, taxi-rates in Singapore are relatively much cheaper than taxi-rates in London.
  • Bring along a water bottle filled with water. - This will come handy when you get thirsty or want to drink something cooling when the weather gets hot. But for those wishing to travel light and are not on a shoe-string budget, they may omit the water bottle. It is quite easy to purchase liquid refreshments except when one is visiting very deserted places.

Breakfast Delight

Breakfast at the Conrad Centennial Singapore's Oscar's Cafe has always been something good to look forward to. Yesterday's breakfast there was no exception.

I met J., J.'s father and T. for breakfast at the Oscar's Cafe yesterday morning. T. was held up so he joined us slightly later. Managed to find some time to show them the photos that I had took at Aberdeen. Then we also caught up with each other.

T. is now teaching in the Junior College that T., J. and myself had once studied in. While T. gave us update about our ex-school, we also spoke about the good old days that we have spent in the junior college. That school was where the three of us first got to know each other. I remember J. as one of the kindest person who tried to make friends with yours truly who was struggling to adjust to the new school environment. T. is a patient friend who lends a ear and patiently taught J. and myself in-line skating. Good to have friends like them.

I enjoyed the breakfast at Conrad Centennial Singapore's Oscar's Cafe. More selection of food has been added to the buffet menu. I like the potato masala, it has a nice fragrance. The quiche tastes good too. J. recommended me to try the cottage cheese, and it was pretty nice. The cottage cheese went well with preserved fruits. I still love the fruit juices there.

J. and myself as usual sampled the cheese. However, we could not find any cracker to sample the cheese with on the counters. While I was looking around for cracker, one of the waiters so attentively came up and asked how he could be of help. I made my request known and he later returned to serve us some crackers. Good service, right?

Even if breakfast was shortlived, it was lovely. Maybe if Oscar's Cafe could give me a special privilege membership that entitles me to the breakfast buffet at special rates, you would probably find me patronising the cafe pretty often.

Woes of a computer user

I wish to write several posts but I am starting to feel irritable on the PC. A rant to ventilate. Don't enjoy it.


Eyes are strained
Too much glare
Typing may make one's fingers work too hard
Then somehow the mind starts to spin

Remember to rest
But had already done so just minutes ago
It must be my body
Urging me to go out for the fresh air

Sunday, October 23, 2005

If there's any light

I did this test titled: What is your light?


Your light is the sunlight: you need safety, warmth and love. You are open and helpful.

Youre a good friend, don't grieve, just try not to shy away from strangers and smile often!!!!!! smiile!!!! :)
You don't think much about the future, you just trust your fate. That's great!! But don't be frivolous. And remember: every day is a new chance!!!! ^^

What is your light?
brought to you by Quizilla

News for those with vision problems

While I was at one of the shopping malls yesterday, I stopped by a road show that was promoting this thing called the Vision Therapy Eyewear. This eyewear is basically a pin-hole glasses.

I was told that the benefits of this Vision Therapy Eyewear is that it can help one to develop good vision habits. I have shortsightness and astigmatism, and I thought this eyewear may help me with part of my vision problems. I don't expect it to help me not to use prescription glasses anymore, but I hope it would prevent my astigmatism to go any worse. After much consideration, I got one pair for myself at a promotional price.

Well, I don't know if I could be persistent in using this eyewear. It is made based on the principle that light travels in straight lines to create the pin-hole effect.

Here's the official website for the eyewear if you wish to find out more:

Recapitulation: Trip to United Kingdom 1 -17 Aug 05

For the convenience of all readers, this post shall put together all the links of the related posts that I have written about the trip above-mentioned. Enjoy reading through.

1 - 13 Aug 05 In Aberdeen:
14 - 17 Aug 05: London and back in Singapore

18 Aug 05: Lost 7 hours

(Continuing from my post titled: 17 Aug 05: Farewell London )

18 Aug 05:

Yet I am no longer referring to London's time back then. I am now referring to Singapore's time.

After much wait, I was finally able to check in my luggage at about 6 p.m. London time (about 1 a.m. Singapore time, since it's summer then). There was a sense of relief in me when the staff at the check-in counter confirmed that my flight would be able to depart for Singapore as scheduled. The only problem was that because of the Gate Gourmet dispute, there would be no normal in-flight food onboard. I was told that although no normal in-flight food would be served onboard, the airlines would provide drinks, packed sandwiches and packed processed food. In addition, I was given a voucher of five pounds which was meant for me to get some food at the Heathrow Airport before I board the plane.

Truly speaking, given London's high cost of living, a mere five pounds of dining voucher could only get me a less than average dinner. But I thought it was good for me because even if there was no dining voucher, I would still have gotten myself a dinner at the airport before I board the plane. The flight was scheduled to depart Heathrow Airport at 9 p.m. London's time (4 a.m. Singapore's time). By 7.30 p.m. London's time, I was already feeling hungry. If I were to think of things this way, I should be thankful that I have saved five pounds on food at the airport because of the vouchers.

The plane took off slightly later than it should be. I was told that the connecting walkway-cum-bridge from the airport terminal to the plane had met with some technical faults so some amount of time had to be sent to repair the faults. After what seems to be a long wait, we could finally board the plane.

As I had guessed, I did not feel hungry to eat on the plane. But I did feel my throat dry. About two hours on the plane, I suddenly felt a cramp on my left leg. It took me a while of hesitation before I pressed the button to alert the attention of the crew. One of the air stewardess came over and after understanding my needs, she led me to a seat right at the back of the plane's cabin. She invited me to raise my left leg and placed it on a protruding part of one of the exits. She said this would help the blood flow back the body and ease the cramp. Then she went to get me a cup of water to drink. Raising my left leg and massaging the left leg did help ease the pain. Sitting at that part of the cabin had helped because there were more space for me to stretch my leg. But soon, it was my right leg that got another bout of cramp, though less painful. When both legs were eased of the cramp, I went back to my seat. I was thankful that the air stewardess attended to me when I had the cramp.

I tried to catch up on my sleep during the journey back to Singapore. The cabin was dark throughout most of the journey because the lights were turned off during most of the flight. That had somehow induced one to wish to sleep.

Because of the difference in time zone, I had lost seven hours when I reached Singapore. When I alighted, the airlines personnel passed me two letters which is equivalent to two vouchers each worth $15 Singapore dollars. One could eat a fairly decent simple meal at Singapore's Changi Airport with $15 Singapore dollars. That is the difference in the cost of living between London and Singapore.

I gave a call home and a call to my maternal grandmother soon after I had arrived at the Changi Airport. It was a homely feeling to be back in Singapore, but I had at the same time wished that I could still be back in Aberdeen and the United Kingdoms. I had grown to like United Kingdom's summer and more so, the vibrant culture scene there. The only thing I could take comfort is that the memories of the trip shall stay in me.

Have I denied?

Never, ''for the sake of peace and quiet,'' deny your own experience or convictions.

-Dag Hammarskjold

Saturday, October 22, 2005

An evening out

Last evening, I met Mystic for dinner. Mystic's birthday is around the corner so it was yours truly's simple way to celebrate her birthday.

We had dinner at the eatery along Neil Road. The orders were: Zhajiang Mian (Minced meat Noodles), Chinese pizza and the Xiaolong Tangbao (Dumplings).

When we went into the eating place, there was a man of at least middle-age standing at the counter near the door. Mystic asked for seats for two, and he said we could share seats with two other customers. When we hesitate, he said if we did not like to share seats we could wait, but most customers share seats. The contents of the speech was reasonable but the tone in which it was delivered had pissed Mystic off. For me, I was apologetic that I have suggested the eating place and have subjected my friend to what seems to be non-customer-oriented service. We suspected that the man could be the boss of the eating place judging from the fact that he is the only person who seems to be bossing the rest of the staff around.

It was puzzling, the last time I was there in March this year, the same man was so nice to come up to our table to teach me and my friends the right way to pick up and the dumplings with chopsticks and eat the dumplings in the traditional way. Last evening when I was there, he seemed to have forgotten how to be friendly to customers. I wonder whether the man I saw yesterday was the twin brother of the man who had taught us how to eat the dumplings? Such a contrast.

I have no wish to turn my blog to one that reports about not-so-good service, so my posts shall just be factual records of the actual incidents.

Mystic found the food to be of acceptable standards and alright, except that she had comments regarding the man's service attitude. The rest of the staff in the eating place were alright, giving reasonable level of service.

I wonder whether man may fall into the trap of getting big-headed when one's business seems to be thriving? Perhaps this was another lesson that reminds one the importance of remaining humble even when one is doing well. But I fear that even if I hadn't been doing well in life, I have presented myself as rather big-headed to some. Nevermind, I rather not explain myself and shall be misjudged.

The Chinese pizza has a crispy crust which I like. I like the filling inside the dumplings. Mystic was helping herself to the ginger slices and I followed suit too. The minced meat noodles was better than the one that I had during my previous dinner with Mystic. The dinner left us pretty full.

We left the eating place when we were done and Mystic agreed to try walking from the eating place to City Hall MRT station which should take about 30 minutes or more to walk to, if we were to walk non-stop. Along the way, we went into a massage parlour, and Mystic requested for massaging service.

Along the journey to City Hall MRT station, I showed Mystic the photos I have taken during my trip to the United Kingdom. I have developed selected photos.

It must have been the night. Not too wet, not too hot. It was manageable to walk to City Hall MRT station. Along the way, we could see the Singapore River. It looked beautiful against the night skies. I had wanted to walk more, but my body signalled that it needs a break.

After I said parting words with Mystic, I went to buy myself a box of organic muesli. I decided that having organic muesli for breakfast is a healthy way to start a day.

Sleep well

A good rest helps one feel refreshed for the next day. Sleep well.

By the way, someone came up with a personality test based on our sleeping position.

What Your Sleeping Position Says

You are calm and rational.
You are also giving and kind - a great friend.
You are easy going and trusting.
However, you are too sensible to fall for mind games.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Searching for the North Star

I am feeling tired to wish to write about my day. Maybe I am just trying to cling on to a life-string, trying hard to find a way to connect to the world out there. I have yet to see any meaning and purpose, but I hope to find that North Star which would guide me to do so.

For now, here's trying some tests.

You Should Get a MFA (Masters of Fine Arts)

You're a blooming artistic talent, even if you aren't quite convinced.
You'd make an incredible artist, photographer, or film maker.


Your Personality Is

Idealist (NF)

You are a passionate, caring, and unique person.
You are good at expressing yourself and sharing your ideals.

You are the most compassionate of all types and connect with others easily.
Your heart tends to rule you. You can't make decisions without considering feelings.

You seek out other empathetic people to befriend.
Truth and authenticity matters in your friendships.

In love, you give everything you have to relationships. You fall in love easily.

At work, you crave personal expression and meaning in your career.

With others, you communicate well. You can spend all night talking with someone.

As far as your looks go, you've likely taken the time to develop your own personal style.

On weekends, you like to be with others. Charity work is also a favorite pastime of yours.


You Are Changing Leaves

Pretty, but soon dead.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

The journey feels easier because you are around

To: All readers of this blog,

Wrote and shared my inner world
Recapitulate my journey through life
Thanks for walking with me
At your pace yet not too far away

The journey is mine alone
But lonely, no longer quite so
I did not know I could have
Sought solace from a world I have wrote

At times therapeutic
Later a way to express
My journey has actually been easier
Thanks to your supportive presence


Drowned in aimlessness
Lost in this world
Nothing is really wrong
But it feels like life has gone

Numbed with indifference
Yet nagging thoughts send interference
Moving but was led nowhere
Hanging on because maybe light is just somewhere out there

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Dinner Encounters

Met Emily for dinner tonight since I was in the university today. Both of us met in the university and later took a bus to a eating place which I had proposed. Our venue for dinner was the XO Fish Beehoon located at Holland Drive area.

Several months ago, my colleague had gave me an account of why she prefers not to have dinner there. She said the people who served the customers at that eating place have "an attitude". I later realised that she meant: poor service.

Well, despite that, I still took the risk to try it this evening. The last time that I had been there, I did not meet with too poor a service. But this evening, I did.

I must have been not too clear-headed, I had wanted to order XO Fish Beehoon, but in the end asked for Fish Beehoon instead. Well, I can't really describe to you what is the difference between the two, but I have tried the XO Fish Beehoon and it tastes better with a richer taste. When I realised my mistake, I approached the counter to ask if there would be any way I could amend my order. The staff at the counter spoke in what sound like an unempathetic tone and he demanded me to approach the staff whom I had placed my order with. I can't remember who that was. In fact, I thought I had ordered from him! Well, I didn't mind if I can't have my order amended, but I would very much prefer to be attended to by staff who could speak more politely.

Well, I shall forgive him anyway. Maybe he had a very bad day? But I learnt that if I were to have meals there again, I must make sure that either I remember clearly who I place orders with or I must take a photograph of the person whom I place orders with. So if the same incident were to happen, I could confidently know whom I place orders with and get the appropriate assistance. But well, if I were to go again, that means I must exercise a lot of patience and take a lot of risks to bear with the service.

While waiting, another staff came and gave us the cutlery. The cutlery did not look well-cleaned, but it was bearable. For the fact that we were not eating in a restaurant, I had lowered my expectations on the cutlery. So long as it looks reasonably clean for use, I could still bear with it.

Anyway, the food was alright. I wished I have ordered the XO Fish Beehoon, but well, I made do with what I had. The Kailan was good. Nicely cooked. Maybe there's a price to pay for such good food?


By the way, the fish chunks are of relatively large size. Look at the photo above and you will know what I meant.

While myself and Emily were having our dinner, three other customers came and sat beside us. They only bought two sets of food. Vaguely, I heard one of the staff who came to serve the food questioning the three customers why they bought only two sets of food but have set up tables for three person. I wonder if the staff knew what sensitivity is?

I keep my fingers crossed that I won't be just as insensitive to clients when I am in lousy mood. Then again, I think I am fallible and could have been insensitive without myself being aware. So maybe, this evening's encounters of poor service is to make me aware how insensitivity and perceived lack of attentiveness to customers' needs could turn customers off?

I spoke to Emily and I proposed a hypothesis that despite its relatively good tasting food, the business did not seem to grow to its full potential, and the reason could be because of a fault in its service. I don't know if I were right. Maybe if someone had been kind to enlighten the people in this place about how to deliver genuine, sincere and responsive service, this eating place might have expanded to a thriving business with outlets in all parts of Singapore?

Bid Emily goodbye after the dinner. It was a nice and peaceful feeling to be out with a friend, despite the encounters we have met during the dinner. Maybe I have chosen not to let my experience of poor service mar my day.

In an epic fantasy

I came across this while visiting Mistipurple's blog. Thanks again Mistipurple.


You are the Sage, the mysterious wise one or shaman. Sages dedicate their lives to the pursuit of knowledge. They are very wise and are good with philosophy and theology. They make good teachers, counselors, and advisors.

Color: Gold
Animal: Raven
Gem: Topaz
Symbol: Pen


Who would you be if you were a character in an epic fantasy? (beautiful pictures)
brought to you by Quizilla

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Hope my brother feels better soon

This afternoon I was in office, my brother sent me a message to tell me that he has contracted chicken pox. Now, this explains why I saw red spots on his entire body last evening. He asked me if I had chicken pox before. I said I don't remember having chicken pox in my life.

Anyway, I hope my brother feels better soon from the chicken pox. I just saw his MSN nickname and it seems like he is feeling the itch from the condition. If you know of any remedies or ways to help relieve my brother of the symptoms of the condition, please feel free to post a comment here. Thank you very much in advance.

By the way, if you have any clue how I could reduce the risk of myself contracting chicken pox, please let me know. Thank you.

I don't know if this is purely psychological, I am feeling itchy almost all over.

Monday, October 17, 2005


I came across this when I was visiting Mistipurple's blog. Thanks for the link, Mistipurple.

I wish my results gave me a brighter image like Mistipurple's, but I have in some ways accepted that I live in a blue world of my own.


People see sadness in your eyes. You seem to be
hurt deeply. You may be unhappy because you are
alone or feel like no one cares about you. Or
it may be because something very awful has
happened to you. Whatever the cause, you go
through each day just waiting for night to come
with sweet relief in the form of your dreams.
But you may have even lost hope in your dreams.
Chin up. Things should get better for you and
there is always at least one person who cares
about you. Have hope.

(Image copyrighted to

What can people see in your eyes?(great ANIME pics)((IMPROVED!!!))
brought to you by Quizilla

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Maybe there's a brighter side

Now listening to:
Chopin's Nocturne No. 5 in F sharp, Op. 15. It has a quiet and beautiful nature. Chopin's Nocturnes seem to bring magic to the night and touches one's heart.


Meantime, I shall try to see if there could be value in looking at the brighter side. Saw this quote, I wonder if it would bring me anywhere?

The worst thing in your life may contain seeds of the best. When you can see crisis as an opportunity, your life becomes not easier, but more satisfying.

-Joe Kogel

Drowning myself in the arms of music

I am now listening to:
Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky's Piano Concerto No. 1 in B flat minor, with Alexei Sultanov on the piano, and the London Symphony Orchestra conducted by Maxim Shostakovich.


No clue what could be looked forward to. I could only hope it is just one of those temporary down times. Trying my best to look for something that may lift up the spirits a little, but even a forklift may not do the trick for now.

In a world perhaps never meant for me, fear then that the search may be endlessly in vain? So carve a path unknown to any, shall I, in order to find a breakthrough? Yet, the wait to gather one's strengths may be longer than one thinks.

If what seems bleak is only temporary, I shall drown myself in the arms of the music, just so that the pain won't be as noticeable. For music soothes.

I like the contrasts in Tchaikovsky's music. I like the second and the third movement.


I found programme notes on Tchaikovsky's Piano Concerto No. 1, written by Paul Serotsky. Visit:

As I end this post, I am now listening to Chopin's Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor, Op. 11. Performed by Maurizio Pollini on the piano, with Philharmonia Orchestra conducted by Paul Kletzki

17 Aug 05: Farewell London

17 Aug 05 (Wednesday):

So the time had came, for me to leave London.

I did not look forward to return to Singapore. Maybe it was because I had yet to experience enough of London? While I had not a single friend in London, I had enjoyed the space and privacy London had given me. However, I wonder if I would be able to survive long-term alone in a world without friends or family? How ironic this may seem. Maybe it might have been better to have not a single care in the world? Leaving might have been easier.


For breakfast, I decided on having the full English breakfast. I savoured every moment of the breakfast.

After breakfast, I walked about the neighbourhood. I decided not to travel too far that day. I walked past the Russell Square Park towards the British Museum.

That day, I must have been fascinated with public amenities. Please pardon me, I took a picture of a public toilet. SH told me before I left for London that the mobile public toilets in London are timed. Firstly, to use it, one has to put in money (I don't really know how this works because I did not wish to use the mobile public toilet). Next, one could use the toilet. As best as I could remember from SH, after about 20 minutes, the door of the toilet would automatically open. While not many would stay in a toilet for more than 20 minutes, the thought of a door that would open automatically did not sound safe.

Public toilet.


London's telephone booths have also caught my attention. In many souvenir shops, one can find miniature models of London's signature red telephone booths available for sale. But I must have had been holding myself from entering into one of the telephone booths to use the facility. Maybe this restraint has sometimes kept me from turning each moment of life into simple pleasant moments of adventure for myself?

Soon I reached the British Museum. I spent some time there. Hopefully I would still have the chance to return?

Thereafter, I returned to the hotel room to pack up my belongings. I must have been wanting to feel prepared to leave, although my flight was only due to leave for Singapore at about 9 p.m., I bought my tube ticket to the airport even before lunch.

I checked-out. I was told I could leave my luggage at the Concierge, so I happily did. I walked to a supermarket nearby to buy lunch. I decided to buy sandwiches and milk and then have lunch at a nearby park. This, I read, was the lifestyle of many of the people of London.

That day was a bright and sunny day in summer. I could see a few people sun-bathing themselves in the Russell Square Park. They simply lie themselves down on the green grass, had bikinis or simply shorts on, and there they go, sun-bathing.

I found myself a seat in the park, which was not easy at that time of the day. As I ate my lunch, I looked about, watching the world go by. That in itself can be a delight. It was as if the fast-paced city had no effect on me. I remained at my pace, passing through life at my very own pace.

While watching, I found myself amused at how the pigeons flock together. When a few pigeons sighted food, most of the time, the rest of the flock would follow. I realised someone was feeding the pigeons. As for the pigeons, they followed where the food went! One moment we find pigeons at one end of the park; the next moment they are at another end. The lure of food on the pigeons seem amazing.

It was not even mid afternoon, but I decided to play safe and left early for the airport. First, I was worried that I might be delayed by unforeseen circumstances on the tube. That morning in fact, while I was purchasing my tube ticket, the staff told me that there was a delay to one of the lines because an unknown item was found. For that, the police had been mobilised to investigate hence causing a delay.

Next, I was uncertain if my flight back Singapore on British Airways would be affected by the Gate Gourmet dispute, so I decided to play very safe by leaving early for the airport. Furthermore, it would take about an hour journey to reach the airport from the hotel.

By about 3 p.m. London time, I was at London's Heathrow Airport Terminal 2. I spent some time and money to use the internet facilites, but the non-user-friendly keyboard made me gave up on using the internet facilities more than 20 minutes. It was quite expensive, 2 pounds for every 20 minutes usage on a keyboard so hard to type and a system that may hang at certain times.

Since I was very early, so I began my long wait in my airport. I was so early that I have to wait till 6 p.m. before I could have my luggage checked in. I used the waiting time to write post-dated entries in my travel journal.

I must have been lucky, I was told that my flight would fly as per normal.

For the photos, visit: 17 Aug 05: all I want is peace found on my other blog.

16 Aug 05: After River Thames

The cruise stopped at Westminster Pier and I stepped out of the vessel after giving tips to the crew as a token of appreciation.

I walked by a bus-stop and decided that I should take a ride on one of the London buses, and sit at the upper deck of the bus. It was fun to entertain such spontaneous thoughts.

I soon found myself on a bus that would take me to Eros, just nearby Piccadily Circus. There was really nothing exciting about being up the bus, except the fact that I could claim that I have sat on the upper deck of a London bus. I had headed for the Eros because I knew that the Royal Academy of Arts is situated somewhere nearby Eros. At that time, there was a exhibition on some of the works by the French Impressionist masters and a group of artists from Boston who paint in the similar style to the Impressionist artists. I wanted to catch it. I have a liking for the art by the French impressionist.

That proved to be a rather expensive and unwise move. While I praise the artists from Boston for their art, I was actually anticipating to see works by the French Impressionists mastes. I saw some of Monet's works. But for the admission price I had paid, I had expected to see more works, so I had somehow cause myself disappointments with my expectations. Furthermore, I must have been feeling tired from the long day to wish to stay too long at the gallery. Well, I think I would have my time better spent if I had travelled a little further to the National Gallery. However, it was quite late in the evening, and I had not much energy to urge myself to walk any further except to return to the hotel.

Along the way back, I saw this street market. It did not catch my fancy, maybe I was not in the mood to do shopping then. But I was told that if you would like to experience London as the locals do, one must find time to check out the many street markets.


I took some time to take a rest when I was back in the hotel room. In the evening, I tried to take time to look for a place for dinner. I had wanted to eat in one of the eating places recommended by a food guide, but I ended up not eating in those places. A few were not opened that day, a few did not seem to fit my budget when I got there.

In the end, I settled for Pizza Hut pizza at a food court located within a shopping centre. The food court closes very early on a weekday. It closes at 7 p.m., and when I ordered my food, it was very close to 7 p.m. The counter staff told me that the food court would be closing soon but I could eat my dinner at the premises. I started eating. When it was 7 p.m., one of the cleaners went around telling everyone that the food court was closing. I felt obliged to leave, but I was not even halfway done with my dinner then. I decided to take my dinner out of the food court and leave. Just then, the cleaner realised that I have yet to finish my dinner and he told me to finish eating before I leave. I realised I was one of the last customers to leave the shopping centre.

Actually, without realising, I had walked from Russell Square to Oxford Street. I was once again at Oxford Street. I took some time to buy some gifts for my brothers and a few other friends at Oxford Street.

By the way, I quite like the evening skies of London. I have captured an image of it here:

I must have done quite a lot of walking that day.

That night, I spent time packing my luggage, ready to leave London the next day. I wished I could stay a longer in London.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Travelling around in search for the answers

Today I was in the office for work in the morning. Managed to clear several mundane but necessary stuff, and I shall give myself some credit and be pleased with the small steps forward.

I do not know how I could make life meaningful for myself to be in but to celebrate the little successes as I move along. So, I decided I shall. Not that I could feel the significance as yet, but I shall believe that all shall add up to a greater good.

When noon struck, I left office since the workday has officially ended. I had Singapore laksa for my lunch at a coffeeshop nearby my workplace.

Headed for Esplanade - Theatres by the Bay after lunch. I went up the roof-top of a bright afternoon in hope to take photographs. Not good enough, I fear. I sense a breakthrough might be needed? Maybe I have been critical of myself, for I have never been easy to please.

Up the roof-top.
When dark corners meet the brightness of the sun, who shall triumph?


I looked from the roof-top and saw more yatches than usual. I wonder what occassion it was today that had invited the yatches?

After checking out the roof-top, my next stop was the library at Esplanade. I went to look for musical albums to loan. I found this recording of Jean Sibelius' Symphony No. 2 in D Major, Op. 43 conducted by Sakari Oramo and performed by the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. It took me a while to figure out how to use the CD player at the library. With the help of one of the staff members, I had that figured out.

I listened to the entire of the symphony. The Symphony was finally starting to make a little more sense to me. I quite like this rendition of Sibelius' Symphony No. 2. As such, I spent slightly more than half-an-hour to listen to the symphony in the library. Here, I give credits to the National Library Board for developing a good library system in Singapore. Thanks.

After listening to the symphony on the CD player, I loaned the album with that recording plus two other CDs.

Then I walked about the Esplanade Mall, spontaneously without much planning, and passed by a retail-space that is undergoing works. I heard this shop will specialise in strings instruments and accessories. Maybe there will be hope for double bassists in Singapore to find greater variety of good double basses and double bass accessories from this shop when it opens?


Then I realised, while I had no clear goal, I was in fact travelling around in hope to find answers to the many questions on my mind. Maybe the world around me might be able to give me clues to those questions? I have no idea where I would stand in the world out there. Is there really a need for my existence in this world? Who determines it? Maybe it might not be possible to find the answers, but may the process of the search be fruitful.


What follows is not a discovery from a search for I knew that there is a Häagen-Dazs ice-cream restaurant at the Esplanade Mall. I treated myself to a scoop of the Flavour of the Month. This month's flavour is chocolate. I know I should not be eating too much cold food. These tend to make me develop worse cough. Anyway, I shall succumb to temptations for today, then be more disciplined thereafter. The ice-cream was nice. I sat by the waterfront of the Esplanade and enjoyed the ice-cream under the scorching sun. Meantime, I tried to delight myself with how my pair of transition lenses had changed its colours when they were in contact with sunlight. Maybe life can be fascinating at times? One may just have to take time to look deeper?

Next stop was the Singapore River. I admired its beauty while taking time to savour the peace and tranquility that the river has to offer. Yet, when things felt as if they have came to a still, the unsettling feeling within becomes more noticeable. The blessing is perhaps that the unsettling feeling did not left me in a state of panic nor depression. I could still walk and move on. Anyway, the following photographs are dedicated to JY.


After much walking, I came to a bus-stop and decided to take a bus to the Changi Airport. That would be at least a 30-minutes ride on the bus. I waited for at least fifteen minutes for the bus. Maybe in life, one needs patience, to wait?

The bus journey allowed my tired feet to take some rest. The journey was relatively smooth except that there were quite a lot of people on the bus. I must have been lucky to find a seat. Maybe everyone would get a fair share of luck too? One just have to see it and appreciate it?


I walked about the Changi Airport, Singapore's International Airport. It is quite a distance from my home, so if you were to find me there, it means that I have travelled specially to have my walks taken there. Take it that I was having my excursion. Out on my own, to explore spaces that have usually been a little out of my reach.

I had dinner at Popeyes, the fast-food outlet that I had wrote about sometime this April. I like the texture of the buttermilk biscuit but was very disappointed that there was no longer syrup available to go with the Popeyes' biscuit. Maybe one way not to spoil one's moods is to accept that there might be disappointments along the way? Seeing the brighter side may help lighten the mood? For example, I shall be thankful that I still get to eat the buttermilk biscuit today.


The control tower, Changi Airport.


After spending some time walking about the airport, I took a bus that took me to town. Along the way, I tried to find beauty in the evening skies that accompanied me along the drive to town. Halfway, I took a short nap. I must have been a little tired.

I think I would still need more travelling about. Life out there seems so complex beyond me, such that more work is needed just to accept life as it is. But I know just simply making myself fit into the life out there may one day take life away from me. Lifeless, I would be, simply to live each day as it comes, without finding the meaning within.

Forgive my ramblings. I am simply lost, despite my relatively good navigational skills.

Friday, October 14, 2005

A good teacher inspires

I was reading Waterfall's blog, and her recent post titled Fun with Mitosis caught my interest and attention. She wrote about how she found a lesson plan online, and made the lesson fun for her students. I think I would love to attend her classes.

The process of mitosis reminds me of my biology lessons, and I have loved them more than my physics lessons.


Somehow the post makes me reflect the importance of good teachers. Perhaps our teacher who would teach us lessons on life can be found anywhere. Some became our temporary teachers unintentionally, without realising it. One need not be a teacher in the classroom to inspire. If I could, I wish I could a out-of-the-classroom teacher who inspires.

But at this moment, I doubt I have much power. I need to wish for some inspirations and vision from wise teachers. Life's ups and downs seem to be making me feel unsettled. Maybe I am too ignorant to know how to live in the world out there?

Which Peanuts Character are You?

You are Schroeder!

Which Peanuts Character are You?
brought to you by Quizilla

Thanks to Simple American for the link to this quiz.

By the way, I did a similar test several months ago (which I prefer) and my results showed I am Schroeder.

To try the other test, this is the link: The Peanuts Character Test written by timberlineridge on Ok Cupid.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

16 Aug 05: River Thames

When I came out of the exit of the Tower of London, I could not help but notice the river beside the Tower of London. While I was in the Tower of London, I was already contemplating the thought of taking a cruise along the River Thames.

Here's a webpage on River Thames:

Irrestible was the thought of cruising along River Thames. I realised there would be a cruise vessel leaving at about 15.25 p.m. for the Westminster Pier, so I hurried and bought a one-way ticket at 5.60 pounds.

There was no tour guide on the cruise, but we had someone (which I figured was part of the crew) who kindly gave us an introdction of the various landmarks which we saw on the cruise. If I have a good auditory memory, I would have remembered everything he had said. But I do not, as yet.

Setting off for Westminster Pier.

River Thames felt as if it was full of charm and full of life. It has seen the history of London. What a pleasure to be cruising River Thames.

A picture speaks a thousand words. I shall not write too much, but shall instead leave you to view the photographs taken on the cruise. Enjoy River Thames. Here's the link: Enjoy River Thames

I dedicate the photographs on this site to Pinkie whose birthday is coming soon. Happy Birthday Pinkie.

When the cruise was to reached at Westminster Pier, we were welcomed by famous landmarks such as the Houses of Parliament, Big Ben and the London Eye. Seeing these landmarks bring nice memories of my visits which I had the day before.

I wished I could be on the vessel a little longer, but I was admittedly tired and hoping to head for the hotel room to take a rest.

There was a queue waiting to leave the vessel. What was the queue for? Well, to line up orderly to give the crew some tips for giving us a short verbal introduction to River Thames.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

The plant in the greenhouse

A little plant
In the greenhouse
With little skills to survive
In the world outside

Purely kept alive by its inner will
And the hope
Of seeing its inner vision
Being realised as the real world outside

Now the vision
Is running vague and dim
From the storms and confusion
Of the external world

It wishes to be showered
With love and encouragement
Yet too proud to ask
For fear of being mistakened weak

Wants protection
But hates intrusion
So trapped in its greenhouse
Uncertain where else it could be nurtured

Brighten the world if it could
And comfort the souls of a few
But lost as to where
It should really be
To accomplish
Its true life's mission and destiny


I decided to find out the meaning behind the name that I have created for myself to use in the cyber-world, so I check this: once more.


You are highly perceptive and intuitive with a wonderful imagination and the ability to manifest your dreams in reality. You are able to create joy, security and harmony for yourself and in the lives of others by the support and dedication which you give. Often the centre of influence people admire your fine qualities and follow your example. Much happiness is gained through your willingness to serve good causes.

I had derived this name oceanskies after giving some thought.

My favourite colour is blue and I like open spaces, as wide as they can be. As such the ocean and the skies seem to fit the bill. Maybe I can be greedy at times, I like the best of both worlds. So I decided to put them together and have them both.

Sometimes I hope to free myself to the endless boundaries of the oceans and the skies. That will be an exact mirror of my inner world. Could I be released?

London: The tube

While I was in London earlier this August, I realised that the tube had became my main mode of transportation about London. I took the public bus when I was there too. When one purchases a day ticket from anyone of the tube stations, that very ticket also entitles one to travel on the public buses and trams without additional charges.

This is the homepage of Transport for London: In short, Transport for London is the integrated body responsible for London's transport system. Its services sound comprehensive, doesn't it?

TfL manages London's buses, the Underground, the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) and London Trams. It also runs London River Services, Victoria Coach Station and London's Transport Museum.

TfL also manages a 580km network of main roads, all of London's 4,600 traffic lights and regulates taxis and the private hire trade.

The people in London seem to have a strong sense of pride in its transport system. When I was at souvenir shops in London, I could see souvenirs such as T-shirts with the map of the tube services in London printed on them. I could also see mini-size models of London buses meant to be bought home as souvenirs. One could also find key chain of the logo of the London's tube.

By the way, when one make transfers from one line of the tube to another line, one is likely to walk long stretches of underground pathway. Sometimes walking along these underground pathways could be interesting.

If one is lucky, there could be a few basking points within each tube station. At these busking points, one may find people performing. If you appreciate the performances of these people, you are welcomed to give them a tip to expresss your appreciation.

I had heard one saxophone player who played reasonably well. There was also a violinist who played one of Bach's works on the violin and he played the violin along with a recorded version of the same work so that one could hear the other instrumental parts of this work. Good idea isn't it? This violinist had managed to have the rest of the ensemble to play with him without the logistic hassles of bringing so many instruments and players along.

London, a place rich in art and culture.

I remember I was wondering how one could make reservation to use one of a busking point? Would people have appreciated it if I were to stand there and play double bass solos? I don't know.

Meaning and Origin of my name:

Thanks Mitzzee and Caracola for spotting this.

Hmm....does it sound like me?:

Pei Yun

You are responsible, determined and tenacious with sound judgement and the ability to inspire others making you ideal for positions of leadership. Having broad vision you are happy to accept the challenge of handling large projects which others may find too demanding. With your keen intuition and inventive mind you are always seeking answers. Fair and just you have a warm and compassionate nature which attracts many friends.

Discover the hidden meaning behind your name: