high noon

So. What’s the best way to ask “Who is this?” when you receive a text message from an unknown number? Whatever it is, I don’t know it.

At 17:11 today: “You coming to Dappled Cities at candys [sic] kings cross [sic] this Friday?”

Funny because I had been pondering the pros and cons of getting a ticket. On the one hand, I am a fan (as anyone who reads this blog may have noted previously); on the other, we are talking about The Cross. On a Friday Night. Not my favourite place to be on a Friday night, nor my favourite night to be in The Cross. I don’t think they’re the same thing, and both are equally valid.

Of course I texted back; t’would’ve been rude not to: “Not sure.”

Followed by: “Who is this btw? Sorry. {EMOJI FACE}”

What was I saying about rude…? Guilty.

This reminds me of that episode in Girls where Jessa receives a text and she doesn’t know who it’s from, but instead of asking who it is, she texts back that she’s at “The Best Party Ever.” And then sends the address and waits to see who turns up.

I don’t think I’m likely to get a response now or if I do, the person who sent it will probably make something up because I’ve offended them (it has been several hours since I asked), and when I turn up on Friday, it’ll be too late when s/he accosts me in a dark alley, wielding an axe or Anthrax or, worse still, a bottle of NZ Sauvignon Blanc. (Just kidding, NZ. But I’m not kidding about Sauv Blanc.)

So. Candy’s and DC.


Reds in a row

Reds in a row, L to R: NARS Satin Afghan Red;  CHANEL Rouge Allure Lacque Coromandel #72NARS Semi Matte Shanghai Express; Bobbi Brown Creamy Matte Red CarpetSmashbox Photo Finish Ravishing; NARS Semi Matte Fire Down BelowMaybelline Color Sensational Red Revival

I was doing so well. I had even allowed myself to think that I would be able to get through all this year without buying any more reds because, in my humble opinion, more than a couple is too many, and frankly, it’s been ages since I got to the bottom of a ‘stick.

Interestingly, I was chatting to a Singapore Airlines pilot-friend and he said, “All the females I know go through at least one lipstick a month.” Well, of course! All the females he knows are flight attendants probably and of course they use at least one a month. I, on the other hand, am rather less committed/regular in my application of lippy. Don’t get me wrong, I love it. Especially the nude shades upon which I had been fixated for the last five to seven years. (NARS Dolce Vita, I’m looking at you!)

Pilots, flight attendants and nudes aside… Lately, I’ve been obsessed with finding The Perfect Red and so I’ve bought a few more and have been wearing a different one each day for the last week or so.

NARS Fire Down Below is the first product I ever purchased from the range way back in 1996 – it was from London’s Liberty (I spent many days off wandering around the Beauty department and have very fond memories of the place!) – and I loved the rubberised case with its wraparound stark white logo (I still love it)… to say nothing of the cheeky shade names, and the actual products themselves (wonderfully pigmented products).

I’m sorry, I’ve been rambling all over the reds. What I wanted to say was of all the ones shown above, NARS’ Shanghai Express is my favourite. It’s just the right shade of red, neither to bright nor too dark, and the matte finish makes it easy to wear. If the finish is too shiny or ‘slippy’, it can look a little trampy, if you know what I mean!


down an alley

What does it say about me, the fact that I like taking photos of quiet alleys and garbage bins? In the daytime, not the nighttime. I’m sure there’s something in that.

My day took me from home to my cousin-in-law’s to our restaurant to the NSW Wine Festival and back to the restaurant again. Eighty-one photos in total, and this is the one I choose to represent my Sunday.

As I said, what does it say?


double Dom

News! The bet. The abstention. The self-imposed three month dry spell.

My colleague/bet-partner fell off the wagon this week! The admission came mid-week, mid-morning. Ah, he must’ve spent the first few hours of Wednesday morning deciding whether or not to tell me. Of maybe he was just busy. But confess he did.

“How did it taste?” was my first question.

“Bloody fantastic,” was the unequivocal reply. A wide grin to punctuate.


I’m still dry, in case you were wondering. I don’t get to keep the 500 unless I get to the end of March. So, I have about five weeks and a day to go. Not that I’m counting.

On 1 April or thereafter, I’m going to crack open one of these babies. Since Wednesday, I’ve been eyeing them up somewhat more enthusiastically every time I open the fridge, but that’s all. My eyes have been thirsty.


beautiful INDAH products

I seem to have jumped on the coconut oil bandwagon. Not shown in this photo is the extra virgin coconut oil I bought for consumption. But I have been consuming small amounts of it this week – a half teaspoonful of the stuff in my tea, of all things. It’s quite odd to be adding oil to tea. I haven’t cooked any meals at home this week, but if I had done so I would’ve substituted the coconut oil for the usual sunflower oil or whatever it is that’s currently in the kitchen.

EVCO aside, I couldn’t go past the body butter (patchouli! sandalwood!) nor the perfume balm (jasmine!). I am really enjoying these so far, I must say!

The irony hasn’t escaped me, though. As a child growing up in Malaysia, my grandmother used to make DIY coconut oil and we used to put it in our hair for unbeatably soft, smooth and shiny hair. I remember being teased at school for being a hick with coconut-oiled hair, but what the heck! Everyone wants the natural stuff these days. We’ve come full circle, back to our coconut tree and its strange fruit  (and oil).


Repetto love

Sure I’m no dancer, but I’m a Repetto fan. This pair is the ‘Bolchoi‘ in black calfskin. I love the shape and the pleat detail at the front of the shoe, the suede toe-cap, but most of all, the way Repetto fits just so, hugging the foot for snug and comfortable wear.

This is my fourth pair since 2007, or maybe 2008, it wasn’t that long ago, but I forget. That aside, what I mean is, alhough I always consider other makers of ballet flats when it comes time for a new pair, these days I seem to end up going back to Repetto. My first pair was from David Jones Sydney, second and third pairs from Harvey Nichols Leeds, and this pair, Selfridges London. I hope the next pair I purchase will be from 22 rue de la Paix, the home of Repetto itself! Surely I’m (over)due for another visit to the City of Light.

In case you were wondering what brought on this post, it’s because I’m coming to terms with the end of summer this week, which means the shoes are gradually, finally, replacing the sandals and Havaianas. I’m gutted about summer’s sticky slow demise, of course – I am every year! – but I’m trying to think positively about the coming months. Running/exercise will be less taxing in the reduced heat, and there’s something to be said for the fashions in the colder months.


bralette and BazaarTheoretically, I’m keen for the soft cup, no underwire, triangle bralette – this one is by Eberjey (of course I chose black). I’ve had this piece for a while, but I probably don’t wear it as much as I could. I certainly never wear it ‘out’, because I’m wedded to wire; I just don’t feel supported without it. But when I’m at home, no problem, I’m only too happy to go for the soft option. I would like to know if other women are comfortable wearing this style of undergarment for normal everyday wear. And do those who wear size M and L feel confident in the lace-only option? I’m an S, and I feel like there’s too much bounce and what-not. As I said, it’s not something I would wear to work, or even to the supermarket.

It’s been a day of mostly immersing myself in the latest issue of Harper’s Bazaar (Australia) – Happy 15th Birthday, Bazaar! I had a tough time choosing which one I liked most out of the 15 covers on offer. In the end, I went for the Hermes cover because I like classics and the colour orange. Also Estée Lauder lipgloss (sample size) and a tonne of silver jewellery, including open hoops, Somerset bangle, and a collection of rings from budget to a bit more, of which I piled on more than a dozen today.



Some days that I wish I could either shave off all my hair or just let it be.

The second option would require more than a mere day. I’d need go away for six months, or even a year, to a desert island, preferably – to just let the follicles find their level (whatever that means). No more five to six weekly hair appointments. I just want to be. Unruly. Unkempt. Uncoiffed. I’d probably be unemployed too because without regular hair maintenance I’d probably look unemployable, too. (Hello, escapee from the loony bin?)

So I guess I should really seriously consider the first option. Jeebus.

Friday has been brought to you by BHD*.


*BHD = Bad Hair Day


eggsEven after all these years, I still find it strange that people feel the need to express their feelings about the fact that I’m at my age, been married for a while and still childless. “You’re still young enough to have a baby!” they exclaim. “Don’t you want to have children?” “Surely you want to pass on your genes-!”

Now, I’ve never displayed any tendencies towards maternalism, I’ve never even tried to fake it – anyone who knows me will attest to this. I don’t care to carry or cuddle anyone’s baby, I generally don’t find babies cute – I mean, they have to be exceptionally cute or I have to be completely biased towards the child or their parents to feel that way towards the sprog. To date, I only find my brother and sister-in-law’s children cute. I even cringe at the word ‘cute’ sometimes, and certainly I would never ever describe a child as ‘adorable’. Why should I adore a child who hasn’t done anything to prove him or herself beyond merely existing? And it wasn’t even their choice to exist, they haven’t done a thing yet to elicit my adoration! Those baby products commercials where the mother either kisses or pats the baby’s bottom? I’m like, “Why?” All I think about is pooey nappies and up-chuck. No thanks! … I’ve never heard the tick-tock of that biological clock. I’ve never felt a tug at my womb (ugh) at the sight of other women pushing their strollers or dragging their rugrats along as they kick and scream that they’re not ready to leave the playground.

Besides not feeling broody, these days, I also no longer feel angry and irritable when people  carry on about me wasting my potential as a mother. A decade ago, I would’ve been annoyed, but now… These days, I listen politely and I might even vaguely nod my head in agreement. If I’m feeling slightly playful, I might also promise to think about it. On the days that I’m feeling downright devilish, I go so far as to promise that I’ll get on to it right away (wink, wink!). And people generally sigh with relief at having been able to persuade me, to make me come to my senses, to nudge me not quite so subtly towards what they see as my rightful and ultimate role/destiny.

I got all this from an old (we met when I was 17) friend recently when I caught up for lunch with her in Perth. Over post-lunch coffee, she held back tears as she explained how her daughter was the best thing in her life, and I had to have a baby NOW, and she just had to tell me this – before it was too late for me! – and she was so glad to have had the opportunity to say all this to me that day.

Tears. They don’t persuade me any more than a soft-focus image of a baby’s bottom does. The End.


gold!I love the new Foals’ album ‘Holy Fire‘ (released today, people). Even more than the new gold shorts I was wearing on Saturday when I met someone famous who is indirectly connected to perhaps the most famous gold shorts, nay hotpants, that ever featured in a video clip ever ever EVER! She was very nice, by the way.

Hotpants aside, I’m now crushing on, loving, Officially Obsessed with this album – every track is gold – and if I hadn’t had to work today, I would’ve listened on repeat, in sequence, back to front, on shuffle, inside out (even though that’s not physically possible), all day already.

Nice one, Foals, awesome way to wade into the week.


blue sunsetUsually I’m more or less OK with myself, but some weeks I can’t help but feel sad that it’s all downhill from here. It’s like I’m watching the sun set and I can’t stop it. I miss my 20s today. How is that? I didn’t like them so much when I was there, and yet today… Tonight, I feel differently. I don’t know why.


sshhh!I go for weeks without dreaming, or at least, remembering my dreams… but this week-! A couple of nights ago, my dream featured two partners from my office, one of whom wanted to borrow the other’s (silvery-white) hairpiece. I don’t know what I was doing there, but I was. There. Watching with amusement as the serious older partner tried the hairpiece on for size then snatched it off his head and threw it back to the other younger partner and said, “No, I think people will be able to tell.” The funny thing was the older partner is (and was, in the dream) dark-haired and not in need of a piece. Very sensible, or else he would’ve gone out looking like a Top Deck chocolate bar.

This morning, I woke to another dream. A steamy, racy, saucy, raunchy sex dream. O.M.G. W.T.F. My heart was racing as I got out of bed, and I think I might’ve even been blushing. If I had been a 15-year old boy, I’m sure things would’ve been messy. Perhaps I’ve shared too much. I’m not sure why… I guess over-sharing has been somewhat of a theme this week. I can only apologise.



Yesterday I attended a birthday lunch which extended to drinks through to about 8pm. Long lunch, right? Trust me, it did feel like a very long day by the end. You may recall that I’ve gone booze-free for three months; it’s been just over a month now.

I adore my friends, honestly, but after several hours of the wine-and-dine (with emphasis on the former), I honestly couldn’t wait to get out of there! Rambling circular conversations, wandering hands, even tears – just a few things I saw and heard yesterday with my clear, sober eyes and ears.

I found myself reflecting on my own experience with alcohol over the years, and I couldn’t deny the fact that I’ve done tonnes of stupid things when under the influence – as recently as last year. CRINGE. I want to crawl under a rock right now. Seriously. Mortified.

Thankfully, besides the realisation and regret, I’m also now feeling relief and liberation. I no longer get to Friday and feel like “I just need a drink!” in order to make my day/week better. (I didn’t normally drink on ‘school nights’, i.e. Monday-Thursday.) You might be familiar with that feeling: you just don’t feel like things are right until you have a glass of something in your hand. Shackled.

A friend mentioned yesterday that the two others in his household went alcohol-free for two weeks in January but he said it was a tense and fraught fortnight because his housemates didn’t quite know what to do with themselves without their usual props; he is a non-drinker, too. I’d actually suggested that these friends try to stay dry for a month, but apparently it was too much. However, that’s that, none of my business.

What is/was my business was the fact that my drinking M.O. was that of classic binge-drinker. Sure, I was being good during the week, but there were many Friday and Saturday nights of sozzled debauchery, and isn’t bingeing worse than a regular but controlled/low intake? I don’t know when exactly I decided I had to play so hard (although I think it happened in London), and it’s taken me a while to realise that I don’t need to keep doing that. I mean, when you go to work on Monday feeling either exhausted from your crazy weekend or feeling like the next four days are a blessed relief, then you know you need to calm the fuck down.

And what about all the dozens of bad or foolish decisions made whilst on the sauce? I won’t even go into details – no, I won’t share even one example! -because I’m still embarrassed. I may never get over the shame.

So right now, just over a month into my ‘Booze-Free for Three (Months)’ exercise, I’m feeling really good. Clear-headed. Steady. Kind of powerful. (Is that strange?)


No more drunk-texting. If I’ve sent you any emails or SMSes on a Friday or Saturday night recently you can be sure I knew exactly what I was doing… and better still, that I didn’t regret it the next day! No more crying into my drink(s) because… oh, I can’t even remember why I was feeling so emotional in the first place – sob! But I am, I just am! No more staggering home at 3am and trying to avoid making eye contact with the concierge because you know you look like you just fell into a barrel of cider and couldn’t get out for five hours. Yes, that is a big alcohol stain down the front of your favourite animal print dress. Rarr! And best of all, no more feeling dusty, rusty or musty – whichever flavour of hangover you choose – any more! So much time not spent languishing in that bed of rotten regret until mid-afternoon. (I could keep going, but I won’t, don’t fret!)

If you’ve been out with me recently and you think I’m now a boring so-and-so who’s gone over to the dark side, then I’ll simply have to agree with you. I’m not being righteous about it,  you don’t need to give it a try unless you want to. I’m just saying that I’m into it (like bees are into honey), it’s working, and I’m going to keep going until 1 April. And what’s more I may even carry on after the deadline if I feel so inclined.

So there! Things are super peachy on that front, in case you were wondering… I promise I’ll try not to mention it again until next month.


I’m back in Sydney.

The visit was almost too brief, but it was lovely: to spend some time with my family; to hang out with some good coffee; to wander around the old streets, some of which look so new now, thanks to the myriad redevelopments; to get my Vitamin D reserves up just by being outdoors (it’s not guaranteed in Sydney)…

Right then. Back to norm.

leaving on a jet plane...

smiley graffiti

pink on blue