November 23, 2009 § Leave a comment
Is there such a thing as post-travel depression? PTD. For I fear I am suffering from it. Sudden bouts of the blues erupt out of nowhere, and I spend miserable long minutes reminiscing on the life that seemed real yet so unreal. It has been almost 6 months now since I’ve returned to fragments of the life I used to have, and once in a while a giant wave of PTD hits me and somehow food isn’t as tasty and people aren’t as interesting.
What are the remedies for PTD? Even couchsurfing has lost its gleam and I have stopped advertising my couch for surfing. It is a whole different ballgame on the other side, and I have been bitterly disappointed that none of the people I have hosted have displayed the enthusiasm I had when the tables were turned. Perhaps I am expecting too much out of Sydney, and everything else, for that matter. Alas, it is an affliction that I cannot reverse.
PTD, I hate you. I want to banish you forever.
November 17, 2009 § Leave a comment
Right this moment I really should be getting off the computer and doing something more leisurely like read a book but there is just one little bit of awesome I feel like sharing. Just hours ago I received what I hope will be the second-last amendment to my book contract. Ok, so my 12,000-odd words will be starting its life as an e-book, but holding an actual printed contract in my hands seemed exciting. And now with a real solicitor poring their legal eyes through it makes it all the more real. I will be politely asking y’all to buy my book once it’s out. That shall be soon, so start saving.
Another round of awesome is that I have booked tickets to somewhere in China. I think it’s a part of China. Anyway a couple of posts ago I pondered if it was worth the exorbitant price during peak season to fly to Malaysia a second time in 6 months just to attend a wedding for a day. Since then I decided that you can’t put a price on friendship, but you can pay an extra $300 more and fly to a whole different country while stopping over for a wedding in Malaysia. Hey! Now that’s smart flying, huh?
Also! I am reading Harry Potter again. And what is awesome about that is that by some miraculous turn I have completely forgotten how the whole thing ends, so it is like reading a brand new book all over. And! My apartment is clean, clean, clean.
November 14, 2009 § 1 Comment
In the last 12 hours, for the first time in more than 12 months, I drove a car. Not a car that I own, but still, a car, nonetheless. You would think that after 15 years of solid driving experience one wouldn’t feel nervous putting those car keys into that engine of that enormous car. I asked for a hatch, I got a damn sedan. I hate sedans! Anyway, there is a point. After feeling nervous for a whole 5 minutes, I stepped on that accelerator and zoomed myself into York Street right smack into the middle of Friday afternoon peak hour traffic. Then I had the smarts to turn into George Street. At 6pm! But it was fine. I drove myself home, then drove myself all the way to Greenacre, and drove right back into the city. And parked. In the city!
I feel like a whole different person driving a car. Wait, it’s extreme happiness! A big grin on my face! I never realized that it was so vital to the level of independence that I felt. I can do 10 things in a day, and go places I normally can’t be bothered to on public transport. I can go visit my friends whenever I want. I can buy stacks of furniture and load them up. I can go for dinner at obscure places. I can sing along to music and no one will judge me. I wish the companion could see how important driving is, but we can argue for infinity and it would do no good.
Today I’ve got lots planned with my temporary mobility. If only I didn’t have to return the car at 6pm today.
November 10, 2009 § 4 Comments
To this day although almost every Chinese person I know has gotten married, I have never attended a real Chinese wedding of any of my friends. Now let me point out that Chinese weddings are so tacky they are fun. It occurs over the entire day, which begins in the morning with the Groom Test. This means that the groom is required to drive to the bride’s house in the morning with a band of chosen male comrades who will all be required to perform a series of challenges in order to receive the bride, who is the ‘prize’. Some examples may include drinking concoctions of vodka mixed with chilli, and reciting embarrassing poems in one’s underpants. Once they complete these tasks, they will be allowed to go into the bride’s house, the groom ‘wins’ her, and together they perform the Tea Ceremony, which literally means serving tea to each others’ in-laws. At night, a big-ass banquet will be held at a restaurant or hotel of choice, in which a hired elderly lady will MC on stage and provide light entertainment to the attendees such as yodel traditional Chinese songs.
Most of the Chinese friends I know who do hold traditional weddings are in Malaysia. Since I have not lived in that country for almost 10 years, on the occasion that I do get invited to these things, the timing has never worked out. Secondly, when the timing was no issue, inevitably it always occurs when airfares are at their most ridiculously expensive. It’s a bit of a Catch-22 really, and most recently, I have been invited to yet another friend’s wedding due to be held in the first week of January. However this is no ordinary friend. It’s a friend I have known for 16 years of my life, and we have been friends throughout every single boyfriend and girlfriend that have come and go. It’s a friend I don’t see often, but everytime we see one another, be it every 3 or 4 years, it’s like we never left.
And now he will tie the knot, and I would love to be there to celebrate with him. It will cost me roughly $1500 to fly back just for a week. Should I or shouldn’t I? I think may already know the answer.
November 9, 2009 § Leave a comment
When I was travelling last year one of the things I really missed about Australia was the enormous variety of food it had from various cultures around the world. Ever since I’ve been back I’ve been gorging myself at familiar places but also trying out new spots. As you all know I love to eat so I have decided that every once in a good while I am going to review some of the great food that Sydney offers. My last food review was Prague in Kings Cross.
Over the weekend a friend brought me along to have breakfast at this fantastic establishment in Danks Street, Waterloo – Cafe Sopra at Fratelli Fresh. The last time I went out for breakfast was yumcha at Marigold, so this was quite a refreshing change. It is basically a warehouse which sells produce downstairs and houses a cosy little cafe upstairs. As we walked up the steel stairs, I gaped at the amazing assortment of Italian vinegars, jams, wines and cakes around me.
It is not a large cafe, and probably only has 10 – 15 tables max. The menu is very inventive, and everything on it seemed mouth-watering. My dear friend, who had been keeping this place a secret from me, highly recommended the Shaved Brussel Sprout Salad With Pancetta And Poached Egg. Oh my, it was one of the best things I had ever tasted. You would think something like this was made out of secret ingredients in secret ways, but if you check out their website you will find a lot of their recipes available for anyone interested to recreate the awesome eating goodness. Plus, they also give free cooking classes, though it looks like you have to book heavily in advance. I might find myself there. Now that’s service, huh?
November 8, 2009 § Leave a comment
Hi folks. It’s that time of the year again. Yes, Movember, just in case anyone was wondering why the men around them had decided to forgo personal grooming. Just this afternoon, I read about the World Moustache and Beard Championships, which I was convinced was fictitious until I saw their website for myself. Be prepared for a hairy feast. Happy Movember.