31.03.13

breakfast

You’d be rejoicing in slices of white nectarine and kibble mix for breakfast, too, if you’d had the evening I did yesterday.

Last night: a party on board a boat docked in Cockle Bay Wharf with a group of 55 to 60+ year olds plus my cousin-in-law (“Cuz”) and myself. He’d been invited by the boat’s owners, whom he’d met via another boat-owning couple. “Come along!” he’d suggested, and so I did.

I don’t quite know what I’d expected, but for some reason I’d thought everyone would be around ‘our’ age so it was a bit of surprise to be amongst the mature and/or semi-retired/retiree set. They were fun, though, I mean, they were really enjoying themselves – music pumping (I think it was WSFM), flowing Champagne (although not for yours truly), a seemingly non-stop abundance of food.

I couldn’t help but note that except for the age group, it was exactly like a gathering with my own friends. At the start of the evening, the men were at one end of the boat, and the women gathered at the other. As the night progressed, the groups started to mix around a bit more, with all the man/woman talk mostly out of the way.

And just like a party of my peers, there was the usual one or two who’d had a bit more than they should’ve. “I used to throw up, but now it just doesn’t go down and I can’t sleep all night,” one of the ladies said, “The reflux…!” “Oh, it’s so uncomfortable!” another exclaimed in agreement. And as for yet another woman, one minute she was fine, but the next time I looked over, she was swaying, slurring and sobbing into her glass. I swear, I might’ve shuddered a little but it gave me pause for thought: I hope I’m not like that when I get to that age.

I know, who am I to judge? I’ve had my share of alcohol/substance-influenced misadventures, screw-ups and tears before midnight. I’m just saying, it’s really rather awesome to feel in control. I also love the fact that getting a little bit messy is no longer an inevitability, and certainly, nor is The Morning After.

The hangovers – I’m not missing them at all. I’d be tucking into a big greasy fry-up and then going back to horizontal, and feeling really sorry for myself, rather than what I just had now. Fruit, nuts and seeds and, dare I say it, an insane urge to shout “WOOOHOOO!!” at no one in particular.

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Listening: U2 ~ I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For

30.03.13

light and shadow

I grant you, not the best picture to post from an aesthetic or vanity (short legs, check!) viewpoint.

But here’s what I like about it: the effect of the sunlight on the carpet resulting in two different colours altogether. Combined with the lines of shadow, the effect is almost… cubist.

The other point being I wore the short onesie (playsuit) last night and it was a bad idea. There was a bite in the air, and I found myself shivering. The Hub thought I was play-acting, but hello, chattering teeth! Admittedly, I am a sun-lover so anything below 25C means discomfort. I think it’s goodbye to the onesie for this year.

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Listening: After Glow by Foals

29.03.13

success in midnight blue bottle

Bad bedtime habit: trying to read even though you’re so tired you end up dropping hardware on your face. For this reason alone, I think the iPad Mini is well worth the purchase. It makes less of a thud, and doesn’t hurt as much as a full size iPad.

Good bedtime habit: serum. Lately, it’s been Elizabeth Arden‘s Overnight Success Skin Renewal Serum. But don’t look for it on the website – it’s been discontinued! I’m contemplating stockpiling this stuff from  Cosmo Cosmetics which is where I purchased my 30ml bottle from.

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Listening to: The Stars ~ The Loose Ends Will Make Knots.

28.03.13

come to me, caffeine!

Could’ve done with a big one of these today. Or maybe just a bit more sleep.

So pardon the lack of the usual sharing inane chatter, but I’m bushed and I need my bed.

Selamat malam!

27.03.13

reading and sipping

Some evenings, all you want to do is get home and veg out with some reading and a cuppa.

I missed all of the 29C Indian summer day today.

What’s new? (Jilll Stark’s book is excellent, by the way; I can relate to almost everything I’ve read so far. And I’m 80% certain I’m going to extend the non-drinking for at least another three months.)

 

26.03.13

vibrant

I don’t think I can do it. I don’t think I can go back to the booze (last day of abstention being 31 March now looming). I’m not ready. Not just yet.

If you could get into my head, you might begin to understand.

It feels too amazing right now. Things are sharper and brighter, and I do realise how strange that sounds, trust me. But they are.

I love waking up clear-headed on the weekend. I wake early all the time now. I do stuff. I walk, I run. Or I might do nothing much at all. But all of that is better than waking up with a sore head and pretending I’m fine (“I’m not hungover, just a bit dusty…”) when what I really feel is miserable, rotten, regretful, sorry for myself or all of the above.

Now, if I could just re-programme my brain so that I don’t get annoyed by the small things.

24.03.13

hello, Hyde Park!

I am aware that I’ve posted a similar shot from Hyde Park before, but I never tire of the scene. It’s always enjoyable to be surrounded by trees in the heart of the city.

I met the Bestie for a walk this morning. A good catch-up over two to three hours of walking/several kilometres, breakfast in between. By the time we were done, it was lunchtime.

Great way to spend the best hours of the day, I reckon! Now if I could just re-programme my brain so that I don’t feel deflated about the approaching end of the Sunday, and hence the weekend, I’d be sorted.

I don’t think I’m the only one who feels this way about Sunday and the inevitable ‘finish’. Tell me I’m not!

23.03.13

the (sydney) magazine + cuffs

Latest love: cuffs. Not bracelets. Nor bangles. Double or nothing.

While it’s still balmy enough for me not to seek out long sleeves for the evening.

The only issue: I’ve yet to find a well-sized snug (i.e. not to gape-y) cuff. These ones sit mid-arm whereas I’d love them to rest just-so upon the wrists.

twice cuffed

The April ‘fashion’ issue of the (sydney) magazine was out yesterday with a feature on the new breed of Australian model. Diversity at last? I remember my high school days in Perth when I could just about count the Asian kids in my year on one hand and how I wished at times that I was one of the blond-haired, blue-eyed surfie chicks who seemed to rule the school. Those days are gone. However, fashion has always been slow to reflect this. Only very recently have we begun to see more Asian or non-Caucasian faces in the popular media.

Whatever, the cover is beautiful; the cuffs certainly think so.

21.03.13

festive lanterns

I really wanted to post something about an hour ago, but various factors conspired against me – I.T. issues mainly, first work-related, now seemingly WordPress website-related (I’ve had to resort to using the iPad app) – that I’m now over it.

Even these bright festive lanterns I snapped in Chinatown earlier can’t shake my black mood. (I’m really annoyed with the work I.T. issue, frankly. I was seriously considering heading back to the office an hour ago, it was about 20:15, but I realised how ridiculous that was. But it means I can’t deliver something until the morning, and I know I’ll get grief about it. So I suppose now is the appropriate time to remind myself that in years to come, when I’m on my deathbed, I won’t be fretting about how I should’ve got myself bent out of shape about work stuff over which I had no control. Right?!)

 

20.03.13

morning ritual

On the days that I don’t start the morning in the gym, I feel ponderous and listless. I would even go so far as to say that I feel depressed and I pretty much hate the what stares back at me in the mirror. Which means that’s every second day because so far I’ve mainly been doing the one day on, one day non in terms of gym attendance.

Yesterday was a ‘non’ day and as I was leaving the office, I rang the Hub who he said he was going out for a run because he’d managed to finish his meetings at a decent time – the sun hadn’t even set yet. I didn’t want to be the one to have to volunteer to get the groceries/something for dinner (because our fridge was pretty bare), so I said that I also wanted to go for a run… even though I hadn’t even contemplated the notion a second ago, and really, honestly, it wasn’t what I felt like doing at all. What I wanted to do was head home as quickly as possible to peruse the latest issues of Vogue Australia and Monocle I’d purchased a few hours ago. (And post something on the blog… but you knew that anyway.)

And what’s more, I’m not a huge fan of outdoor running. I’d much rather pound out my k’s on the treadmill. It’s easier to zone out that way – just plug in the headphones and go. I don’t have to worry about uneven surfaces, twisting ankles, which direction I’m going in, rain, wind, people, cyclists, dogs, etc. (I especially dislike running in the dark which means it’s the gym by default as it means I can run at 6am with no dramas). But I did it, and it was as unpleasant and unsatisfying as I remembered^. Nor could I go for as long/far as I can on the treadmill. It was really sad and discouraging. And I still hate running past or near other people. My misanthropic tendencies seem even stronger when I’ve got my running shoes on.

So… I think I should do it more often because clearly I need to improve and shake myself out of my comfort zone. Weekend outdoor running, here we come!

Remind me I said this!

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^ Slight exaggeration, it wasn’t that long since my previous outdoor run. I did the outdoor thing during my week in Perth earlier this year. And it was actually OK, because it was in the park.

19.03.13

ahh, ankles

“It’s a 15-minute wait,” she said, apologetically. “We are busy tonight.”

Because I normally hate waiting for anything, my first thought was, “I knew I should’ve called ahead.” But because a wait for two takeaway bento boxes meant that I had an excuse to do nothing but bask in the aural bliss of Two Door Cinema Club‘s What You Know, I didn’t mind at all. I’ve been in the sort of mood -all day- that I could listen to TDCC on repeat for hours.

I’m In Love with this band. I listen to This Is The Life and wish I had been at Brixton Academy that night, right down the front. Listen, and tell me the jangly guitar and the bit in the middle (that drumbeat in particular) doesn’t remind you of another famous band from that country. Perhaps it’s only a vague likeness, but it’s there.

(The sashimi bento hit the spot, by the way.)

18.03.13

bag o' stuff

Clockwise from top left: Longchamp Le Pliage handbag; amenities/toiletries bag from Qantas; iPhone 5 and headphones; pencil case by I-can’t-remember-who (seriously!) purchased years ago from Notemaker; security pass and keys, scarf by Diane von Furstenberg; iPad mini; wallet by Witchery (white no longer in stores)

I’ve lost track of the number of times I’ve been asked whether the iPad Mini is good, better than the regular sized iPad, worth purchasing or all three. Yes, yes, yes, YES!

That cliché about all good things coming in small packages is true.

I don’t need a bag any bigger than the smallest version of the Longchamp Le Pliage; even my LV Speedy 20 feels far too roomy now that I’m toting the petite iPad, and as for the Marc by Marc Jacobs Q Hillier Hobo, forget it. I’m trying to forget those and the others currently housed in their dustbags – they’ll probably be staying there for a while.

It was chilly this morning, in case you were wondering about the scarf. Summer, adieu!

16.03.13

vino?

Here’s the thing. I’m a couple of weeks or so to the end of the month… And I’m getting nervous.
Shouldn’t I be jubilant about making it to the end of the quarter? Or excited about the prospect of being able to imbibe once again? The money, the bet, the $500 – shouldn’t I be rejoicing about that at least?

All I can think about is the fact that I won’t have the excuse to politely decline that glass any more. And how comforting it has been to be safely wrapped up in the blanket of abstention. Oh, it’s been liberating to be cloaked in that reason/excuse. (Yes, I know it’s odd.)

… As I said, my imminent return to the Drinksville is making me nervous. Wait a minute, don’t people “have a drink” to relax themselves sometimes? Oh dear.

14.03.13

black/white ankh

Everyone needs a black-and-white ankh in their life. This one is on a T-shirt acquired recently. I’m doing things backwards, I fear. I was never really a jeans-and-tee person, at least not when I was in my 20s, but now I can’t get enough of them. It’s unfortunate, frankly. My 20-something body departed years ago. So I’m having to distract myself with graphics-emblazoned t-shirts to counter the ankh-iety. (Groan.)

13.03.13

very cold and very chocolatey

I had lunch with a few colleagues today at The Sailors Club in Rose Bay. To those of you who are familiar with Sydney’s restaurant scene, you probably know that it used to be Pier, of the three-hatted ilk way back in 2010. It was a suitably sweet location for a sunny and bright day, right on Rose Bay with the usual selection of marine vessels moored close by on the glimmering waters of the bay.

It wasn’t a massive lunch, and just in case you were wondering why we whooping it up mid-week, it was to celebrate an accomplishment which involved a lot of work and time (not to mention weekends and nights, for some of us) – and we dutifully returned to the office afterward.

I snapped a shot of my dessert, the Sailors Club tiramisu. There was a dry ice thing going on which made for a lot of oohing and aahing. It was extremely cold, extremely chocolately, and I felt a little sick after I’d made my way through slightly more than half the serving – I couldn’t finish, but I did enjoy it immensely. Very different to a tiramisu you’d have say, in Venice, but it was pretty perfect for a hot day.

12.03.13

Tuesday evening's treats

A bit of escapism this Tuesday evening via the latest issue of Harper’s Bazaar (Australia) and my earworm album of the week, Birds of Tokyo‘s March Fires. Track two, This Fire, especially (humour me, LISTEN to it!). Although clearly of the ‘now’, the song transports me to a certain time in my life when I was stuck in Perth for three months when I was supposed to be in London, and my friends used to drop by in the afternoon, with ice-cream sundaes from Macca’s, and we would ride around in J’s jeep, and I really didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life but somehow it didn’t matter.

Now I still don’t know what I want to do with my life and it does matter. I’ve been thinking about this lately because of a couple of developments at the office which has planted that pesky seed of wondering, “What if…?”

Do you ever feel that way?

11.03.13

brick boxes

I am aware that of late I have been posting pics of bricks, mainly. When one lives in the city, it’s hard to escape the brick boxes, so much so that one ends up becoming somewhat obsessed, in fact, by the shapes and structures, singly or seen in a huddle. If it weren’t for my fear of heights, I’m sure I’d be one of those abseiling window-washers already.

10.03.13

blue with wisps of white

After a 7-hour day in the office yesterday, I was determined to get myself outdoors today. It was a lovely day, both in the city and over the water – so it appeared to those of us confined to the land, albeit happily.

white over blue (water)

This time of year is the best in Sydney, in my most humble opinion. Neither too hot nor humid. And on 27C Sundays, it’s sublime.

09.03.13

ASX building

I ended up finishing Friday and the week late at the office, as expected, but for something else entirely unexpected. At just after 7pm, a colleague and I were hoofing it back to the office from the print shop (because both ‘big’ printers at the office had chosen to break down a couple of hours earlier) when a fire truck sped past, squealing and flashing. “I hope that’s not for our building!” my colleague said.

It was for our building. There we were with our box of emergency printing, now stuck downstairs because the lifts were now inoperative while the fire crew attended to whatever the emergency was – not that one could tell, because there was no smoke, nor fire, nor a cat stuck up a tree or dangling out the window.

Thankfully it wasn’t for too long, but these things – entirely out of one’s control – add time to already lengthy days (and the printing was a minor non-issue, actually), and there’s nothing else to be done but smile and look on the bright side, cancel dinner plans, make apologies to others, and make promises to oneself to have a good weekend…

…Until someone arrives at your desk and says that thing for which you thought you’d be devoting your Friday night but which was hijacked by equipment failure is still needed before Monday. Here we go, here we don’t. Saturday, maybe next time.

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This is not a complaint, by the way. I’m just saying how it is. I’m not fishing for sympathy. I’ve actually decided those who don’t work in the industry find it difficult to fathom Why. Even my bestie doesn’t get it (he’s constantly sending me texts: “You need a new job!” No I don’t. He’s looking for a new job and perhaps projecting his issue on to me. So I just press DELETE. Sorry, Bestie!) I realised recently, chatting to someone who asked about my work hours that my typical work day is a long day to most people. Actually, I’ve known that for a while. ‘9 to 5’ is a movie (and a song), not [my] reality. And I’m OK with that.

06.03.13

concrete cage

Cripes! Here we are at the end of Hump Day, and I’ve been absent…

It’s been one of those weeks, I fear. I’ve been stuck in the office from arrival to departure, with no time to get out during the day and at night, I’ve been beat – quick dinner, bed a short time later, falling asleep with the iPad in my hand.

I knew this week would be thus, and in truth, it’s actually gone better than I expected. It’s not been brain-bustingly stressful, more like relentless in the I-need-a-few-more-hours-a-day sort of way, if you get my gist.

I trust everyone’s week has been tolerable, if not fanfreakingtastic.

03.03.13

then and now

Hello! Your opinions please?

Keep the length or go back to short?

Thank you

(I won’t say anything about the number ‘3’ – specific to this post. I’m tempted though.)

02.03.13

Kings Park

When I was in Perth a month ago, I went to Kings Park one morning. Despite having lived in Perth for about a decade when I was younger, I don’t think I’ve been to Kings Park more than a handful of times. Seems odd now that I think about it. Besides being a beautiful place, it also boasts some stunning views of Perth. It’s one of those places that fills me with that Good to be Alive! feeling. I think a lot of that is related to the trees. The ones you see above, on Fraser Avenue, stand tall and majestic, having been planted in 1929. (Yes, I am a nerd who reads plaques. I also like to wait until the credits have finished rolling before I depart a cinema.)

I walked past the woman sitting in the shade (bottom left corner of the photo) a couple of times. Was it the headscarf over the bald head, her thinness, or her frail demeanour as she balanced somewhat precariously on her stationary walking frame, that gave her away? Further along was the white hospital van, with the driver/attendant waiting patiently.

I couldn’t help but think back to this time last year.

Yes, it’s almost a year since the cancer claimed my dad.