Friday, September 16, 2011

up up and awayyy

(except the ice cream man shot, photo credits to dr. koo chiehshen)

it's been awhile.

had a wonderful time with family and friends on sunday (thank you!!!)
and was finally ready to go. 

uneventful flight to london and currently in the country for a week of pre-uni vegging out. 

 thoroughly enjoying the pastoral surroundings, small towns and supreme hospitality. 

have a ton of books for company, the best of british tabloid trash
and family just a whatsapp message away.

plus there's wireless so i could be constantly plugged in.

but that would defeat the purpose of vegging out, wouldn't it.

either way, what more can a girl ask for? :)

catch you when i'm back in the city!

p/s because these meatballs are fast reaching their expiry date, it would be apt to direct you to the new blog.  

mysterymeatballs started out as an exchange blog while i was in stockholm in 2009, and then the second helping chronicled the second half of the bar exam course, starting work, and all the way till i decided to go back to school. so it looks like it's time to move! 

thanks for stopping by, and do visit at doctorlawyerindianchief if you'd like to check in.

Monday, September 5, 2011

last week in singers

the departure date's really crept up on me, and i can't help but sing along with mr. mayer as he tries to stop that train.

speaking of trains, i love 'em! can't wait to explore the uk by rail. hands down my favourite mode of transport and with the youth pass (because i'm not in my mid 20s yet!) i save 30% on tickets. the only thing better than the prospect of endless train rides is discounted endless train rides. my inner auntie is blissed out :)

unrelated to trains, but while we're on the transport point, here's a photo from the weekend. 

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

mass call 2011, incidentally post #200!

"I can think of perhaps 2 other occasions in your lives that will rival this day in terms of significance and honour. One would be the day you take your marriage vow and the other, the day you become a parent and hold your baby in your hands for the very first time..." - excerpt from speech by Vice-President of the Law Society Lok Vi Ming, S.C

was called to the singapore bar on saturday 27th august and am very glad leave the profession, ironic as that is, on a high note. having finished what i started, it was fine and fitting closure to a good five years. enjoyed every moment of lawsch and have been incredibly blessed with wonderful people along the way. pupil-ing on the team i pupil-ed on was a privilege, and hand on heart i can say the chances of ever working with an (almost) perfect team like that again are very very slim :(

grateful for the mentorship i've received, and even more grateful for the support and encouragement of those i respect. my lawsch dean was my referee for medsch applications and i am convinced i was accepted because he wrote so nicely. yay to the close of one chapter and the beginning of the next. i leave in exactly two weeks and am excited beyond belief.

"This is a profession that leads you to be involved in the lives, businesses, the hopes and aspirations of people from every level of society; from the weakest to the most powerful among us; because the law is part, and rightly so, of every aspect of our society. This is a profession that allows you to be a teacher, a counselor, a protector, a healer and a friend to people who seek your help and to people you are paid to oppose." also from Lok S.C.'s speech.
 so with that, it's goodnight but not goodbye.

p/s on an unrelated note, 27th august was really a day of milestones seeing how i also voted for the first time! 

p/p/s have a soft copy of the law soc veep's speech so if you were at call and are interested, drop me a line and i'm happy to send it over.


one of the loveliest things about having foodie friends is how sharing is caring, to quote ashley. and share she did with this review about luke's. as with most other times, there were a few abortive attempts before we finally made it to luke's and being the cheap date i am, i was very happy to have made it in time for the 4pm-7pm special*.

great deal aside, what impressed me the mostest mostest about luke's was the impeccable service. singers is infamous for awful service** and while tipping stresses me out***, i do think that it serves to motivate waitstaff. the moment we were seated at the bar counter, out came two steaming hot towels. ohmyword! while i'm too finicky to put "public" towels on my face but having it on my hands was deliriously refreshing. it was just like being on singaporeair :)

mad props to the bartender, who was was supremely attentive without being intrusive. he sort of hovered in the background but was ever ready with the top ups. the complimentary cornbread plate was also a very nice touch. plus, he pre-empted our every request, which i felt was noteworthy and pretty darn amazing. the only other place where i've had this level of service in singers is gunther's. 

mindful that we were headed for a lovingly prepared steamboat dinner right after, we stopped at half a dozen washed down with beer each. ok tell a lie, he had my beer and i got an additional charddy :) when we were done, we got another glorious hot towel each. so simple, yet such a good idea.

luke's was a series of good touches, from the music to the hot towel and comp-ed cornbread, with the attentive service being icing on the cake. can't wait to return for a blow out dinner next time. thanks ash for the recommendation, and thanks long-suffering manfriend for tea.

*half dozen oysters and draft beer (stella or hoegarden) for $25 from 4pm to 7pm
** something to be said about the mandatory 10% service charge, eh?
*** thank god i'm going out with someone who can count

Sunday, August 28, 2011

artichoke singapore

coffee for him, alcohol for me. story of our life!

toasted corn bread

hard core scramble eggs

sunday brunch at artichoke on ruimin's recommendation. rui, a purveyor of good taste and all things refined, is one of my most trusted lobang-buddies. and artichoke most definitely didn't disappoint. will be headed back but for dinner next time!

Friday, August 26, 2011

moutai moments 2

so i posted about one of the best friday nights in awhile last week but the professional photos just came in. without a doubt, they blew my far from professional shots out of the water. which is just fine because i am continuously bowled over by dr. koo chiehshen's photos. he takes the best photos and i shamelessly rip them off because he's sucha sweetie. it's no coincidence that my reserve of photos (i.e. the good stuff that never makes it to facebook or the blog) predominantly originates from him. somehow he manages to make everything look so perfect, so styled, and so put together when in fact it's just me and my supreme chapalang-ness. 

case in point: dusting me 'misu, and the table, with cocoa....

and he's pretty dishy, isn't he!


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

spring cleaning finds

it just hit me that this brief pre-departure stretch is sort of the last time i'll be living at home, and in my room. 

big transitions on the horizon and when i return next summer, i do think i'll have to move. no plans to come back in between starting school and the end of first year so i'm going through all my earthly possessions and doing my darndest to sort them out. 

first there's clothes - what do i keep, what do i pack to bring, what do i give away, what do i donate. fortunately, being unsentimental and generally minimalistic means i've made it through the clothing challenge relatively quickly. 

but my books! oh my books :( and that's when it starts to get trickier. my lovingly annotated literature books? my collection of intellectual reads (haha) slowly amassed over the years? my mountain of cosmos, also amassed over the years? poetry books from former flings (haha, again)? and my folder of cross-disciplinary A+ work since primary school? not like it's very thick, but, still!

cleaning whinge aside, there is some good that comes out of this massive operation.

like this old photo of yvie and i!
gotta love the retro hair and vacuous stares. 
two decades later, nothing has changed :)

the W word

is still something i haven't quite gotten my mind around. 

but after being granny's +1 at the thanksgiving service and vow renewal of this lovely couple, i do think i'm a step closer to understanding what goes into a long, happy marriage.

it was a moving ceremony, with tributes from their daughters and what struck me most was how love is about letting go. a very deep concept for after lunch on a lazy saturday afternoon.

Monday, August 22, 2011

curry drama

this genius invite landed in my inbox last week and i couldn't resist sharing it.

There's never really a need for a reason to get together and chow down, but in the event that you do require an explanation you'll find it over here:

Reason #1 is located over here
(Now whoever heard of such a preposterous thing!)

Reason #2. is located over here
(A good excuse to cook and eat in good company if I ever heard one)

trust ashie, hostess extraordinaire, to throw a politically aware dinner party!

i, for one, was completely oblivious to the curry going-ons. however, this alternative viewpoint, as voiced by the voice of reason (naturally), was that perhaps it's all a storm in a teacup (curry pot?)

understanding the furor a bit better, it seems like netizens were unhappy with the indian family being told to restrain from cooking curry when the sensitive-nosed chinese family was at home. however, this arrangement must've been suggested by either party and agreed to by the other. i.e. it must've been mutual and consensual. so there didn't seem to be a need for all the anger at the result.

for the uninitiated, mediation is never about a one-sided outcome and because it's not binding. this is unlike a court order which is 1. determined by the adjudicator and 2. binding. thus, the mediator's role isn't to decide the outcome based on the facts presented so any angst towards the mediator is misdirected. the mediator's role is to be move the parties towards a mutually beneficial solution.

there you go, mediation in a nutshell i.e. me clinging desperately to what little legal knowledge i can purport to semi-possess.

that said, we really don't need much of an excuse to eat curry nor to party. what a great way to share curry appreciation and champion tolerance.

if you're curious as to how the party went, clickety click to ash's right here.

crib warming

bull pup flying solo

a wave of pre-nostalgia hit me when i went to visit xj in her brand new office. excited for her and because i'm living vicariously through her, i thought i better pay my dues by helping beautify the space a little. also, i do feel somewhat for leaving her in the lurch as the most junior on the team. whatever first-yearer work that should've gone to the both of us will unforch almost all land on her lap. but hopefully another name plate will fill the empty slot on the door, and it won't be too long before she has a roomie. 

we'd a great run as bull pups though, and i've fond memories of our pups' corner.

p/s doesn't she look happy for someone who just started the rest of her life?! wow. awesome work ethic yo.

tbc again again

quite unintentionally, it so happened that it was 2 x tbc in one weekend. 

also quite unintentionally, i realised that sake (sean's white ball of hypoallergenic fluff) is more hip and haps than i am. losing to my four legged friend is definitely a bigger blow to my ego than i'll let on. if you think 2 x tbc in one weekend is bad, sean AND SAKE did 2 x tbc in 12h. how's that for hardcore! 

so while i was fast asleep in the wee hours of sunday morning, sake was shufflin' in the sand, making friends with the other party animals. when i later lamented to ash that i knew a dog that was cooler than me, we put two and two together and it turns out she had just met sake the very same night! singers is really waaay too small.

whinge aside, here are the happy campers en route to the beach. sake is such a trooper! then again, anyone wanting keep up with sean has to be.

noe is so dainty!

and to show that bromance is colourblind, here are the chippendale hopefuls dressed matchy matchy in their orleng singlets. awww :)
(photo credits to noe!)

moutai moments

leaving xj to pursue her more happening friday night plans, i was ready to roll to friends' for dinner, only to find that our long anticipated catch up had been child (as opposed to rain) checked. their baby girl was suddenly unwell so with the hosts out of commission, the motley crew needed a plan B.  had whisked up a tiramisu for dessert, but that quickly evolved to an appetiser, washed down with some bubbly before we decided to take a chance on ps at ann siang.

thankfully, the gamble paid off in spades.

and we retired for the rest of the tiramisu, this time washed down by some duty free burmese whiskey and bona fide moutai.

which led to suicide chess. which led to "upskirt" photos. which led to embarrassing stories that will remain within the smoke circle.

oh how i love my chimney friends.

tgif at tbc

what better way to celebrate xj's last day of call break than a three hour pampering session, followed in quick succession by an afternoon at the beach. we planned this looong ago, from the confines of our shared cubicle, and all too soon call break was upon us. 

couldn't have picked a more perfect day to head to the beach and just as we tired of the blue skies (it's possible, believe me...) the clouds rolled in and we'd perfect cloud cover.

when we'd our fill at tbc, i decided it was high time that xj went to restore. funny story: the restore recommendation first came from xj herself and after i became a regular, she still hadn't gone! this just goes to show how she's a A+ employee and works way harder than i ever did. anyhoos, it'd be a blooming waste to be so near and not stop by so we whiled away the rest of the evening over waffles, deep in discussion about return of investment. 

yay to girlfriends! and fridays! and NOT HAVING TO WORK :D

wandering hunter valley

and quite liking the spoils of vineyard living. 

bought more bottles than we could legally bring back but that happy problem solved itself with constant drinking for that perpetual buzz. 

part of me is tempted to compare hunter valley with tuscany and bordeaux, both fantastic wine country in their own right. but life would be sad if new experiences were always compared with existing memories. plus the added element of romanticising something that's past. having next to no expectations for hunter valley meant that i did end up appreciating the hunter for what it was worth. 

and for that i am grateful :)

thus concludes the sydney and hunter valley series folks! thanks for reading.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

morning ramble hunter valley

stumbled upon a bona fide sardinian restaurant run by a bona fide sardinian. the fare was so hearty that we had a late lunch there, before going right back for dinner. it's an unspoken rule that we don't visit the same place twice while on holiday. after all, there is so much to see and eat. however, this find was worth a double dip and we ordered way more than we could finish, which is in itself quite a feat. but never fear! whatever we couldn't finish at night, tasted even better for breakfast on the deck.