Friday, December 16, 2005

Odds and Ends

Hmm haven't been back in the saddle for more than a month now. Not sure what to write about first... the nice albeit few days back in Singapore? Or about the dental concentration camp I voluntarily signed up for where I got chewed up and spat out? I was tested and tried and found wanting. *sigh* Well I decided to do an odds and ends post since I still can't really string two coherent thoughts together.

I guess I'll go chronologically. The trip to Singapore was quick, I mostly stayed at home, only venturing out for my friend's wedding and for a meal. Here is a picture of a lane in Chinatown where the road is closed and it comes alive late at night with hawkers selling all sorts of tasty delights such as satay, hokkien mee,
chicken rice, fried kuay teow, cheong funn, seafood "cooked food" stalls(where you can order any style you like eg. pepper crab, chilli crab, butter prawns etc), dessert stalls and drink stalls.

The meal I had was at an Indian "banana leaf" canteen type place. You go up to the counter and point at various things you might like, enquiring when the meat looks too cloaked in thick curried pastes to tell its origin. I had a black pepper lamb biriyani set. It was delici-yoso! And pretty cheap at $5.50 SGD. My mum also ordered some curried blue swimmer crabs on the side and had dosai (a thin crepe like bread made with yogurt, a delicious complement to the many curries) A man soon delivers your set meal complete with cucumber raita, acar (picked veggies), papadum and an egg doused with rich red curry. A guy walks around during the course of your meal with a tiffin carrier offering other "side" curries or chilli sauces should you wish. These have no meats but are useful for mopping up with excess bread or rice. Also they are complimentary.

The wedding was beautiful, my friend of 15 years, A. and her new husband J. had their tradtional 9 course dinner sans sharks fin soup (substituted with abalone fish maw soup instead) as they are environmentally concious. The restaurant was by the Singapore River and they arrived in a decorated little bum boat decked with white balloons and ribbons, the boat comming in close for a photo op with them waving from the bow. We the guests then formed a welcome arch armed with sparklers as they walked in from the pier. Everyone had lots of fun ! No photos for privacy reasons of course but I guess you the readers can use your active imaginations :)

Then came the hard slog. I had never studied so hard in my entire life. I arrived late on Thrusday but from Friday morning until the following Wednesday, my cousin and I studied really hard, sleeping only about 4 hours a night, and even that was pretty fitful. We stopped only to shower and eat (20 minute breaks). I am happy to say that my cousin made it! However, I on the other hand fell really short :( I think the number of subjects we passed was proportional to the amount of time put into preparation before and since I worked 5 and a half days a week until october, I put on my students cap too late.*sigh*

Here is a photo of my cousin and a friend we made at the hostel fervently studying anatomy. We named our skulls Fred (left) and Harry (hairy getit? ;)) You could say we really put our heads together *kaching boom!*

Well after the 2 week nightmare, it was great to kick our heels up, my cousin and I gretting a great meal at Seoulria in Sydney (review to follow). I enjoyed a beautiful drive home, stopping at a truck stop just after Lithgow, close to the Mt Piper power station. To take this photo of a Christmas tree/ pine farm which backed onto it.

Well I must leave now to pack for our Christmas weekend in Sydney which will be spent with Richard's parents as well as my friend J. who got married in October.
As I wrap the last of the presents, I will leave you with some of the famous Orchard Road lights in Singapore, taken from my Dad's car on the way home. This is only the tip of the iceberg and doesn't do the mall section any justice. Hope you like it though.


At 5:19 AM, Blogger KirkK said...

Whew - That's a busy couple of weeks! Hope you get some rest; and start the New Year revitalized!

Happy Holidays, Rachel!

At 5:15 PM, Blogger milgwimper said...


WOW! You were definitely packing in the activities these weeks. Don't be so down on yourself, you are not lacking you are just wonderful. Yeah studying is kind of hard when you have a life. :) You will do better next time! Also You trip to Singapore sounds fun! This was a good post Rachel, and welcome back!

At 1:47 AM, Blogger Clare Eats said...


merry christmas :)


At 2:40 PM, Blogger Sue Crane said...

Hi Rachel,

So amazed to find you and your blog. My husband is from Cowra and I am from Malaysia. Small world huh? We both live in Sydney but his family still lives in Cowra. We visit quite regularly. It was amusing to read of all the places in Cowra that I know of, and of course Singapore. Drop me a line if you like. but try noodlebowl dot net - I don't have a blogger account but a website.

At 2:07 AM, Blogger Rachel said...

Hi Sue! Thanks for stopping by. As you know Cowra is a very small town so naturally I know who your in laws are :D They were so excited about you getting married earlier this year and wanted to know more about the tea ceremony etc. They are very nice people and I am so happy for you. Congratulations !

Milly, Kirk and Clare,
Thanks for all the encouragement and well wishes !!


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