Saturday, May 30, 2015

Happy day full of activities :)

This morning I finally saw my son again. He just had 3 days 2 nights school learning journey's trip to Malacca. It was his first time having a trip outside Singapore with his friends and teachers.

My hubby gave him RM100 as a pocket money - in case he wanted to buy or eat something. However, he used only less than RM15 and that included a lovely gift from his heart especially for me - a Doraemon's passport cover!!! :)

The first gift purchased by my dear Baobei :)

Last week when I passed his passport to him at home, I also passed my passport's cover for him. I said it was too thick for me. And since I gave mine to him, I was left with nothing. So I was surprised that he could buy that for me in return! Thank you dear Baobei!!! And his father received 2 sachets of Malacca white coffee as a gift, that he got from his friends :D

This afternoon I met up with my 2 besties. We had a wonderful brunch at Din Tai Fung, a Taiwan originated restaurant, specialising in Xiao Long Bao or soup dumpling. It wasn't ordinary meeting up session, but also to celebrate Aileen's belated Birthday!!! ^^

Thank you Shelly for treating us delicious Birthday's brunch :)

We ate and chit chatted. After that we headed to another place to have our long waited Bing Soo or Korean dessert - red bean with ice and milk :)

The initial place that we wanted to go was closed. Luckily there was another shop not so far from there, which offered a great place to hang out with a great taste and unique presentation of the Bing Soo! ;)

Pot Bing Soo and Som Som Espresso Banana @Banana Tree :)

Yes, the place was called Banana Tree Café!!! It's a chain from South Korea, located at 26 Keong Saik Rd.

Since we were still quite full, three of us shared a pot of Bing Soo decorated with a stalk of -fake- sunflower ($12.50/portion) and a cup of Som Som Latte with Espresso and banana, topped with a candy floss and a tiny bit of marshmallow  ($7/cup).

They also sold pots of pudding topped with assorted flowers at $6.50 each (see the photo above - 3 flower pots in the middle). It's really great especially when the weather outside was really hot!!!

In the evening my son and I joined the San Bu Yi Bai 三步一拜 (three steps one bow), this year at Fo Guang Shan temple or 佛光山侍 at Punggol, together with PY and PW. We changed the venue this year since we couldn't get the ticket at Kong Meng San monastery at Bishan last week.

We were lucky we managed to do it here though as this was the first time they held it in relation to celebration of the 20th Anniversary of the temple.

Vesak Day at Fo Guang Shan - San Bu Yi Bai

Before started we gathered at the main hall and recited few Buddhist chanting. Once done we slowly walked out to the opposite ground and then to the roadside. It took us almost two hours and we ended it with another chanting. I was very grateful for the chance given to us. My son has done it much better this time. I'm very proud of him! :)

We had vegetarian food after that and finally headed home. It was such a long day full of activities. Although tired and pain, it was all worth it! :)

Vesak day is coming in two days time. Here, I wish everyone Happy Vesak Day! Sabbe Satta Bhavantu Sukhitatta. May all sentient beings be happy! :) Sadhu Sadhu Sadhu Wish everyone enjoy your long holiday! :)

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Ema Datshi Recipe

This afternoon I received and collected gifts from Luzee which was brought by Sonam, her colleague in Bhutan, who came here for the official visit.

Happiness is when I received red rice, chili, and cheese from Bhutan :)

She gifted me 2 kg of red rice, one pack of Datshi (Bhutan handmade cheese), and one box of Ema (giant green chilies).

I was very exciting receiving all these items. I called my hubby immediately and told him that I would cook Ema Datshi (Bhutan most famous - national - dish) to be eaten together with the red rice this evening.

At the same time I asked my Bhutanese Charo (friend) for the recipe. Hehe... Thank you Flora for your recipe. I followed it accordingly :)

Ema Datshi with Red Rice :)

- 10 pcs of Ema (chilli), cut half or in quarter. Remove seed is optional (to be less spicy)
- 1 pc of small size white onion (chop thinly)
- 1-2 cloves of garlic (chop small)
- 1 pc of tomato (chop thinly) - optional
- 1 pc of Datshi or 2 pcs of cheese slices
- 3 Tbs of vegetable oil
- Salt
- 1 cup of water

Ema Datshi ingredients :)

1. Boil water, sliced onions, tomato and oil for 10 minutes
2. Add chilli
3. Add cheese (mash it and spread on top of the chilli)
4. Add salt
5. Cover the lid and boil 2-3 minutes
6. Stir the chilli and cheese well, cook for a little while more with small heat
7. Turn off the fire, remove the lid, taste if you need additional salt, and leave it for a while before serving


Ema Datshi - Before and After ^_^

It's shared among the three of us. I think my hubby and son can become Bhutanese too. They enjoyed it very much! And when I asked my son to rate, he gave me 9 out of 10. Wow! Haha... ;)

Thank you Luzee, Sonam, and Flora! Without all of you, we wouldn't be able to enjoy this delicious food, food that comes from your warm heart :) Name same kadinche la! ^^

Monday, May 25, 2015

Chilli Chop and Dhall

Yesterday evening it was just like another night. We had potluck gathering at my place. It had become more often for me to organise such event as I felt that this way it would be much more convenient for the host to organise, as every guest who came would bring their own food or beverage (either they cooked it themselves or purchased it outside), and enjoyed sharing it over a dinner.

Our potluck menu - Bhutanese food and Gulai Ayam

This time, there were Jambay and Uden, who brought the Bhutanese pork curry or phaksa pha, a bottle of white wine, and chips for my dear son; Mendy, my Myanmar friend, who was also my colleague, bringing another bottle of white wine; and my Indonesian friend, an ex-schoolmate and travel khaki, Margaret, with her Gulai Ayam, a traditional Indonesian dish - chicken cooked in yellow curry-like spices.

I prepared Kewa Datshi (Bhutanese dish of potato cooked with chilli and cheese), ingredients for Dhall (Indian lentil soup) and Chilli Chop (Bhutanese deep fried chilli coated with Besan or Gram flour).

Chilli Chop and Dhall

I loved Chilli Chop. It's delicious snack that you could eat it as Chang Pa (accompany for the beer), or have it with rice. After my post about Bhutanese food recipes, I obtained the recipe of Chilli Chop from Amrith Subba, a Bhutanese blogger who loves writing  (you can still find the recipe there on the comment part). From him, I found out that I had to use not the normal flour, but Besan or Gram flour, a flour that wasn't commonly used or sold here in Singapore. I tried searching it in many local
supermarket but couldn't find until one day Uden and I visited Mustafa and found it there :) That was why I thought of organising the potluck with her (so she could enjoy her home food here in Singapore).

I ate Dhall almost in every meal during my stay in Bhutan. I missed and loved the taste. That's why I would love to learn on how to cook it so I could enjoy it anytime when I felt eating it. But at that time, I wasn't aware on how to cook it. First, I wasn't familiar with Indian spice. And second, I didn't know how to use the pressure cooker. So, ever since I got my pressure cooker from Luzee, read here, I then started gathering some info from friends and Internet about how to make both dishes :)

I called it Sonam Lhamo's Eating House based on my Bhutanese name :)

So, although I had the information on hand, I thought it's still better to watch the local Bhutanese mixed and cooked the dishes. Therefore, Uden was showing me on how to cook it yesterday. Hmmm.... both dishes turned out well. All of us enjoyed the food, the wines, and the chit chatting. We talked and stayed until quite late then they went home.

Today, I tried cooking Dhall myself using the pressure cooker. Hmmm.... I think it's quite successful! ;) I'm very happy la! Now I can enjoy it anytime I want. But I need to learn more on the Chilli Chop as I think it can still have some improvement on the way how to do it. Well, just like any other things in life, practice makes perfect. I need to learn and practice more :D Hope I can do better very soon!!! :)

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Live and Let Live!

Source: Positive Thoughts 

Many people don't understand on how and why we do certain things in our life. As life becomes more materialistic and competitive, it's unavoidable if they think otherwise. We can't stop them from thinking that way, anyway.

But I'm sure that when people do something, they must have their own reasons. It's only that the reasons are different from one to another.

So, don't judge someone before you know them well. Just open your mind and heart. Accept whatever reasons that people have as they live their own lives, not to be judged whether it's right or wrong, as what is wrong for you may be right for them.

As we grow up, let us be wiser in our thinking. Let us accept things with open mind and heart. And just give opportunity for everyone to just live, and let live! :)

Sunday, May 17, 2015

You know they are just like you when...

People - like siblings, twins, or even triplets - who share the same parents, have the same upbringing, live together under one roof, under same circumstances, e.g. same neighborhood, same country, same school, etc., may not have the same or similar minds or thinking towards life and its purposes. They may even have completely different personalities and lead a very different way of life.

However, two persons who are born and live separately in two different countries, lead different types of life, brought up with different styles of upbringing by different parents, who have different number or type of siblings, may share the same interest and hobbies, have similar attitude towards life, which sometimes you yourself can't believe that how come this person has the same passion and life style very similar with what you have. 

Every single of human being is special and unique. Why? Because we experience different things in our life, meet different types of people throughout our life, which at the end, steers our lives differently too. The choice, preference, value, are not built up in one day.

The above things struck my mind when I met up with someone who was few years younger than me, had pretty different background with me, like country we were born, subject we chose to study, siblings we had, and so on. But when two of us started talking and shared our experience, we could easily understand each other situations on why we did these and those things under certain kind of circumstances.

Ok. To give you a clearer picture, I'll share with you what passion we both have.

Wearing Mongolian's traditional cloth

It is traveling. Traveling here, not the kind that we choose the most comfortable and expensive flight or bus services - like paying more to get the upgrade services, such as: business class seat; staying in the most luxury or having the most comprehensive facilities inside the hotel (unless we get it on huge discount or free :P), or spending most of our traveling time browsing shopping malls and going back with tons of shopping bags on both hands, or sleeping inside the hotel room. No, no, we don't.

We both rather choose the most economical, but still faster to reach (we will ask around, compare many different airlines timing and fare, etc.); choose to stay in the safe and clean, but rather low cost  hostel/hotel or even better, at friend's accommodation, preferably in a very strategic location that made us easier to go around on foot on day and night to see the lifestyle of local people who lived at surrounding area; preferred hotel with no breakfast so that we could try a real taste of local food (what usually local people would eat everyday), and we rather use our time to browse the sightseeing places, watch the must go local art performances that you can't find in other countries, e.g. Wayang Kulit, Beijing Opera, Water Puppet show, Russian Ballet, etc., sit at local eating place with a bottle of fresh local (and cheap) beer plus some local snacks as accompaniment.

We prefer carrying our lousy-look luggage (rather than buying a shiny, very good brand and expensive luggage that people would have a first impression that you're foreigner); even perhaps, buy a cheap $20 bag from Mustafa, which was extendable, in case we go home with more stuffs, like tidbits, from our journey.

We love to travel more than two weeks time or even a month or more, especially when we are unemployed, to make full use of the spare time we have. Living life to the fullest? That's most probably the suitable quote for our mentality.

We travel alone most of the time but plan to meet friends or accidentally make lots of new friends in another side of the world. Obviously, the number of our overseas friends becomes exceeding our local friends! :D

We prefer to wear and bring simple pair of clothes, however functioning well depending on the seasons. For example: one two-layers jacket (outside was water proof material that can protect us from rain) rather than few pieces of sweaters of the same thickness, materials, or different colors, plus raincoat, another wind breaker, plus another leather jacket, or jeans jacket for not so cold weather so that you can look great  and differently in your holiday photos. Easy to dry shirt and pants are essential for us too as we prefer to wash it almost every night rather than keep the dirty clothes until we go back home and wash. For us, travel light is important as we travel long term and to many different places.

Eating and tasting local food and snacks most of the time are essential for us rather than indulging in fast food joints, or Chinese/ Indian/ Western food only restaurants, that you can easily find it back home. Local beer/ wine/ spirit is a must-try!

Wearing Kebaya - Indonesia's traditional cloth

Sometimes, we buy and wear clothes as what locals wear. To blend with them, learn and experience different cultures make us learning new things everyday.Chit chat with locals to get more information about their lifestyle, cultures, thinking, ideas, and so on will bring our minds into another new perspectives. The information is rather fresh, real, and true, rather than stay inside the room and watch international channels TV program before sleep. That's defeat the purpose, isn't it?

We are after the adventure, trying new things, visit the never been places before, and when we both are discussing it, we are as if looking at the mirror. As if we both are the same person. Isn't it amazing? I've met such a person and I'm glad that I'm not alone. At least what we do is not uncommon (compare with those people who have different traveling style), and we are proud on what we do. So, what type of traveling person are you? Have you ever thought about it? :)

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

It’s too late...

It's a little too late

Just days before the day
We crossed the path
His face was glowing
And said,
“Finally I found someone!!!”
He showed me his broadest smile that I long never saw in him.

He went on with the details,
Non-stop talking about her,

And he thought,
He finally solved the problem.

I stood still
And smiled :)
I said inside my heart,
“I’m happy for you.”

Days before today
Still remembered that face
Whispers behind my back,
As if I made such major mistakes in life.
On that day,
I thought,
“That’s it!
No turning back!”

“Hey, Reyka!”
His shout awoke me up
My slight smile still left there on my lips

“Oh, yes, good then…
Hope she is the right one,” I replied

I walked out
A little bit sad.
Not because he finally found her,
But because he has to find another one

Very soon…

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Traveling in the gene

Just read the article that was posted by my friend in Facebook - The Genetic Reason Why Some People Are Born To Travel All Over The World. I was wondering though, if I was one of them who had the Dopamine Receptor D4 or DRD4 gene :D

"It's said that people with the DRD4 genes tend to be thrill-seeking and migratory."

"There are dozens of studies that correlated DRD4 gene with increased desire to 'explore new places, ideas, foods, relationships, drugs, or sexual opportunities; and generally embrace movement, change, and adventure.'

Cockatoos crammed inside the water bottle as way to smuggle them through the custom (Pic source: Jetta Images/Barcroft Media)

I may not travel that often though but I'll feel sick if I don't travel. It's like a bird who is born to fly, but it's trapped inside the bottle instead. Refer to the recent case of cockatoos smuggled in Indonesia here and look at the above photo.

Well, I may exaggerated a little bit here. But the truth is, I'm living in a small country (someone even called it a little red dot), inside the cramp HDB flats (one of my friends called it a pigeon-hole), working in a limited not enough manpower, fast-paced, and stressful environment, plus with a very high living standard that it doesn't allow someone to stay idle without a job.

Ask anyone here, or look around! I think most of my friends will take long leave once in few months, or few long weekends, so that they can runaway from this place, to chill, relax, and unwind.

Lucky to us that this small island is located very conveniently among the rest of Asian countries. It's a hub to other continents too. Transportation is never an issue for us. We can go wherever we want, and budget air makes our lives happier (save the transport cost to pay for other necessities) - provided that you have time to go as some job don't allow people to take long leave. Well, I hope I will never get such a job in my life. Touch wood!!!

"Home is where the heart is"

It's May now. It's just two months plus since I last traveled to my hometown, but I feel like it's been a year. Lol! My mind has already set for another destination and try to plan it slowly. I guess I will have ample time but this time round, it's more on visiting friends, indulge to nature, and at the same time trying to visit new places that I've never been before. Let's pray that everything is going to be alright and things will work smoothly! Sadhu Sadhu Sadhu...

Sunday, May 03, 2015

Les Roches Potluck Gathering

It's been 14 years since we left our school. Today we had a small potluck gathering at my place since my bestie, who came all the way from London for holiday, would love to catch up with friends who were residing here in Singapore. There were few from my batch and managed to get them here.

My hubby and I prepared some food. He cooked some delicious fried rice ^^ Thank you dear! My friends came with home-cooked food, hawker food, booze and snacks for our drinking session. Thank you everyone! :)

Our delicious potluck :)

There were 7 of us. And some brought their families and kid. Most of them were driving so they couldn't drink much. Too bad lah!

Time went by. Since graduated, I haven't visited my school again. However, I wasn't the only one. Well, there would be more time in the future and I guess I should make a trip there anytime soon! Let's see how it goes! ^^

14 years after we graduated ^^

We ate and chit chatted - about our present, and our beautiful past time. College time was considered as the best time that we had in our life. No worry about the future yet, just lived at the present moment. We spent most of our time drinking, partying, traveling during mid-term break or whatever break we had, apart from our main duty of studying ^^ I tried to balance both side of the world though. Because one thing, I had to answer to my parents, and another thing, life was too boring on top of the mountain.

But even, after so many years, what remains were the memory. It was still vivid in our minds on what we did and what we had, and that was really one of our happiest and memorable times in life!

Inspiring Life Quotes - Source:

My bestie, still the way he was. Straight forward guys that I knew. Like means like. Don't like means don't like. We chit chatted about what happened in the country where he lived and here. Politics at work, were same everywhere. That's one thing we had to face in life! Well, no one sure what life lies ahead in front of us but we all know reality just works the way it is.

So, once again, thank you everyone for coming and we had a wonderful night together! Really appreciate your presence, food, and most importantly, your precious Saturday's night time! Take care and I wish you all the best in everything!!! 'Till we meet again! :)
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