Sunday, November 25, 2007


Our usual thanksgiving gathering at Sherry's. Carving a turkey was quite easy after practical biology experiences of beheading a dugong...
the girls!
holiday spread

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Sally and the weasels in the garden

pic from

just came back from walking Sally downstairs in the garden and Sally was very proud of herself. Since it was late night I let her off leash and she scamper off ahead to find a suitable smelling spot to conduct her business. As I heard some rustling in the bushes, it must be the neighbourhood cat or our resident weasel. Before u know it, Sally plunged into the bushes round the corner and out popped a startled weasel from the bushes about 2 metres ahead of me. It looked wonderful in its fluffy cream coloured winter coat. In lightning speed, the surprised weasel cleared the foot path and disappeared into the other end of the garden. that was enough to throw off the hot dog on its tail.

Last month during a similar night walk, Sally dived into another patch of bushes to flush out two weasels. It must be her terrier instincts and she was quite good at squirming into the tight bushes and the ensuing racket will generally flush out anything inside. In process, she will pick up and odd twig or spiky pine needles and I have to wipe her down thoroughly when I bring her back home.

someone else with weasels in his garden.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Beijing shopping or Mortal Kombat

Robina had a fun time yesterday. She rounded up a big contingent of ladies (10 ladies n 1 little girl) for lunch at our favourite Persian restaurant, Rumi. She helped to introduce our Japanese fren, Miki to Sherry’s Japanese fren Shizuka. Turns out they were from the same hometown so there were plenty of common topics. Also, another freaky coincidence all the ladies were the same age, born in same year (classified)

Later Joyce, Sherry and Robina brought the Japanese ladies to Jia Yi (佳亿), a slightly better shopping joint than the touristy Yashow (雅秀) and Silk Market (秀水). The Japanese ladies were relatively new to Beijing and the Singaporean ladies were trying to break them into the rough n tumble of Beijing shopping. Coming from a much more expensive Japan, the Japanese ladies probably felt that everything was dirt cheap compared to home and they were actually prepared to pay what the Chinese sales girls were asking for. It didn’t help that the Japanese ladies looked very obviously Japanese so they had to experience a lot of carrot chopping along the way. Luckily, the girls were there to ride shotgun for them.

Sherry and Robina were trying to encourage them to take their time to browse. The usual hazard of bring others to shop is that more likely than not, the bringer ended up with more purchases than the bringee. Not surprisingly, Sherry and Robina bought more loot than the Japanese ladies, right from the beginning.

Turns out, Miki wanted to get a pair of beige suede boots, but they did not have her size. As Sherry and Robina was bargaining for another item, the Japanese ladies walked ahead. It did not take long for Miki to spot a pair of black leather tall boots (Robina recognised the “gian” look). Asking price was RMB490, and Miki looks like she was prepared to pay but Sherry n Robina stepped in to be spoiler since they knew it could be bought for much less. However, they failed to brief the Japanese ladies on the shopping survival skills here: must always walk out of the shop. So Robina was trying to nudge the Japanese ladies out of the shop. In the end, Sherry and Robina managed to bargain down the price to RMB180 (but it was still higher than what Robina felt was the basement price RMB150!). But the 2 Japanese ladies were so happy with the price they clap their hands in joy!!

Shizuka spotted a winter jacket that looked very good on her and obviously wanted to buy it. Sensing blood, the sales girls quoted RMB350 but Sherry and Robina slashed the price eventually to RMB130. They managed to do the walk out trick and the sales girls caved in.

Her Japanese friends were in awe of the Singaporean girls when they witness a (typical) shouting match between them and a rude Chinese sales girl (Note: Adrian and Junior can share their experience at Silk Market). They saw a shop selling T-shirts that they had bought for RMB30 elsewhere and they were told that it cost RMB180. When told that the price was ridiculous, the sales girl lost her temper and became very rude. Sherry was looking for a complain counter (Note: Yashow and Silk Market had such places where customers can complain against shops there. Robina and Sherry had complained before against rude sales staff). that's why Robina's short fuse keeps getting shorter...

All in all, the Japanese ladies had a good time! In fact, on the way home, Miki was asking Robina if there was any chance they will have new stock of the beige boots she like in her size. Looks like Robina have unleashed the shopaholic in her...

Sunday, November 04, 2007

ASEAN ladies event

Robina is not a SGH nurse, and it's not an early Halloween party!as part of her "duties" Robina has to participate in ASEAN Ladies Circle (ALC) events every month. every ASEAN embassy takes turn to organise an event, it turns out to an event roughly monthly and each embassy has to host roughly once a year.
It's our turn eventually and all the embassy ladies including Robina were mobilised for more than a week of meetings and rehearsals.

Alvin's spiel

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