Tag Archive | birthday

When shall we three meet again?

B-D Trio

… in thunder, lightning or in rain…?

When the hurlyburly’s done,
 When the battle’s lost and won….

Well, the Hougang battle’s been lost by the PAP and won by the Workers Party. I don’t know when there will be a reprise of the May 26 joust. Perhaps the next general election?

But I know when we three B-D gals would meet again. Soon.

For our next birthday month of May, when our joint celebration is held again, there won’t be the background excitement of a rare Singapore experience — a by-election to add oomph and bite to our always delicious dinner cooked every year without fail by the delectable HWSNBN.

Last night’s dinner was therefore extra-special.

And if DPM Teo Chee Hean had been a fly on the wall of where we had our dinner, he won’t be so confident  in his words “the elections in Hougang is quite special, as Hougang is not representative of the whole of Singapore necessarily. Because each constituency is different, and Hougang has its own characteristics..

This is because of the 7 of us at our wine-dine-whine din-din, there was only one person rooting for the PAP.

OK, one of those present is a Hongkonger who dropped into SG for a quick visit. So he didn’t count.

The remaining six are all Singaporeans, all having the vote, provided where they live won’t have a walkover at the next GE. And I’m sure that walkovers are likely to be a thing of the past!

Three live in the East Coast, two in the Orchard Road area and one right in the City Centre — their votes would count in the Marine Parade, Tanjong Pagar and Moulmein-Kallang GRCs. Only one of these six were sad that the PAP lost on Saturday!

I’m not saying that the outlier is me or it’s not me.

What I would confess to is that I was dead wrong about the PAP’s prospects in Hougang. Which shows the strong pulling power of the WP, the strong turn off that has become the PAP or a combi of both.

Meanwhile, it was a delightful dinner, with two vintage white wines and a bottle of Moet & Chandon, which weren’t a lot split among 7 hearty eaters :lol:

Palate refreshener: sorbet & jelly

Chikx galore! Stuffed with cheese n herbs

refreshing fruit-trio n veggie salad

Home-made siu-yoke, better than Wah Lok

Fruit flan from Fullerton Hotel

Poor Png, poor WP, you will lose…

…. Hougang. And on my birthday too :razz:!

Which is a pity after WP leader Mr Low Thia Khiang had held the ward and SG enthralled for 20 years

I think the success in grabbing the Aljunied GRC and unseating not one but two ministers — plus retaining Hougang, despite Mr Low not being there — might have proven too much for the Workers Party to digest.

Here are the nettles that indicate WP has evolved into something that Mr Low couldn’t grasp:

  • Mr Eric Tan not being given the NCMP seat, despite his far longer service to WP than Mr Gerald Giam. What price loyalty? Are all the WP CEC members equal? Is a party without hierarchy what we want to run SG?
  • The tenuous explanation given concerning Mr Chen Show Mao’s parliamentary speech. (According to Cynical Investor it’s Mr Pritam Singh). Copy and paste may be common practice nowadays but is it OK to do it for a speech to be delivered in the highest place in our country?t
  • The mysterious ousting of Mr Yaw Shin Leong. OK, the official line is that he was a serial philanderer so his “personal indiscretions” weren’t mysterious. But as I’ve stated elsewhere in this blog, I simply don’t buy that as the last straw. Even if it was, where’s the party’s loyalty to him, hey? At least, he’s got enough bigness of heart to send a message to SGreans calling them to support the WP. If I were him, I would say “over my XXXX XXXX!”
  • The equally mysterious antics of long time WP stalwart Poh Lee Guan on nomination day. So, was he on standby or simply nutty?
  • The NCMP taunt to Mr Png Eng Huat. Was it no big deal what he “incorrectly” said? If the minutes weren’t surreptiously released by whatever mole there is/was in WP, would Mr Png have clarified? Still, the use of surreptiously obtained material don’t do the PAP proud either, in my books, even if the text shows at minimum that the Hougang hopeful couldn’t articulate to save himself.  As too Wongs don’t make a White, I wish DPM Teo Chee Hean would give over hectoring Mr Png and the WP on this issue. At minimum, the DPM would inadvertently help WP and Mr Png garner some sympathy votes.

As I dine and wine at the home of HWSNBN this Saturday, I will surreptiously look at my mobile for that text that either confirms or denies my reading of WP’s Hougang chances :lol:

Making lemonade

As an incurable sucker for freebies, i’d been wanting most of this month to get round to going to Tangs to claim my birthday month’s 20% discount voucher.

But the days slipped away so quickly that it was already half-way thru May when I finally got that clear free afternoon to grab the voucher and venture to shop — in the clear belief that I would get 20% off everything I bought.

I knew exactly what I needed and desired and so felt confident that I would be able to spend the “savings” as well — but at Isetan across the road, and all within the one-hour $2.80 parking charge at Tangs.

Even Tangs’ carpark seemed to favour me yesterday. I felt like walking on sunshine when I found a spot to leave my car right at Level 3 which opened into Tangs.

With military precision I zipped down to Level 2 where Customers Service was. There was no queue and i got served almost as soon as I whipped out my Tangs card and my I/C to claim my voucher.

Then came the crushing disappointment, as the customer service girl intoned that the 20% discount didn’t apply to fragrance, skin care, make up (except for some samples) etc

That was exactly the stuff I had come for; that’s what made me excited — not Tangs clothes, food at its Island Cafe, watches etc..

In fact, if Tangs does collate info on what its card members buy, it would know that I almost never buy anything other than skin care, fragrance and make up from its store.

So why bother to raise my hopes with its “special treat” offer and as a result made me madly disappointed? :cry:

What to do? Since I had ample parking time left from my one-hour, I marched out the door to take the underpass to Isetan in Shaw Centre when another blow hit me. At the underpass entrance right outside Tang’s door, one escalator wasn’t working and the other was under repair.

I toyed with the idea of going back into Tangs to shop but hardened my resolve. I won’t spend another cent on a store that misled me — at least not immediately.

So, Lucky Plaza? No, too tacky.. then I remembered Scotts Square which I had visited once briefly.

And if nothing else, Scotts Square’s aircon was super effective.

Then I remembered Crystal Jade Kitchen right at the top of the shopping square and the fact that it had a promo for soy-sauce chicken at $9.90! I picked up a portion and some lau sar buns (pau with salted egg yolk sauce filling).

Though my purchase came to less than $15, the wait staff were super polite. One even poured me a glass of water without bidding, while I waited for my order to be packed.

Yup, Tangs might have handed me a lemon of a birthday treat, but I managed to make some delicious lemonade as a result.

And yup, I busted my $2.80 parking by about 50 cents.

Next year I’ll know what to do with Tangs’ special birthday month offer. It will go into the bin along with all those gifts with strings that come from two of the three clubs I belong to and about which I’ve once dissed here.  With the exception of NUSS that is! Its annual $20 birthday gift voucher with no minimum spend is always welcome! Not those of the Tanglin Club or the Singapore Cricket Club whose “gifts” are poorly disguised ways of extracting money from me!  :roll:

She turns 87 & she turns 84

Mum turned 87 on Monday. No fanfare. No celebrations. We just had simple lunch at Lenas in Bugis Junction. She and I shared a set. Her Picky had a set all to herself.

On Sunday, there was the usual family lunch with hongbaos to her from the usual suspects. H and C bought tarts from Baker & Cook at Hillcrest Road as I suggested. They also gave mum hongbaos despite my saying “no need”. Guess it’s the usual Asian reaction to suggestions of “no need” :lol:

What a diiference a year has made. Last year, a week be4 mum’s birthday I was able to give her a pre-birthday treat at ION’s Paradise – just the two of us. She was able to hobble on her own two legs with the help of a folded golf-stool.

This year, no such luck. When we go out, she needs a wheelchair, for her sake as well as for mine, since many a stranger had gone so far as to suggest to me that I shouldn’t make my mother suffer. “Get her a wheelchair,” they said!

I might still be dithering if not for the fact that events took the decision out of my hands. Mum took a bad tumble at home on Oct 2 last year that led to her hospitalisation at Tan Tock Seng Hospital for one night for observation.  Apres that, although she suffered no more than bad bruises, I didn’t want to take any more chances.

We got her a wheelchair for outdoor use and another for indoor use, although most times the latter isn’t used at all, as mum still manages to move around at home with the help of a frame-walker.

Now contrast my mum’s latest birthday with what another octogenarian whom I know. Auntie GY celebrated her 84 on March 3 at her lovely home off Swiss Club Road.

I got to know Auntie GY thru a mutual friend and this is the second time I have been included in her birthday bash, the first being two years ago when we went in a group to Sarawak.

The difference lies in the fact that one birthday girl is still full of joy of life whereas my mum while still enjoying her food has lost much of her ability to engage with others. And that ability is what makes living vibrant — unless one has always been a hermit or a recluse :roll:

  Although there were about 40 of us, we couldn’t even manage half of what was available, supplied by Glory of East Coast Road… because there was still the dessert of birthday cake, cakes I mean, as there were two!

Two of the best for the 84-year-young birthday girl

Life is still blooming at 84!

 

More blooms still!

 

Guests making themselves at home

 

The joys of turning 90!

Almost two years ago to the month, I was persuaded to join a “bonding” trip to Melaka with my friend and her friends mainly because her octogenarian mum was also going.

Not that I’m an octogenarian (yet) but I do so loathe the rushing around that these two-day one-niters involve. But with an octogenarian onboard, I reasoned there won’t be much rushing around.

I was wrong, as indicated in my post back in 2010. The matriarch of five kids, many grandchildren and equally numerous great-grandchildren was feisty and always ready to go even when those one-third her age felt they have had enough. So I was obliged not to be outdone by her several times on that trip. :cry:

On Saturday night I went to her birthday party at Golden Peony Restaurant at the Conrad International Hotel and discovered that the matriarch wasn’t 87 like I thought on that Melaka trip. She was already 88 back then, as last night marked her 90th birthday. Wow!

I will let the photos below do the talking but my takeaway from the event is that there are many joys to be 90 – if you have most of your faculties intact and a loving and large family with not a little bit of moolah.

If only all of us can write such a formula as we row towards that glittering golden shore :lol: :lol:

Birthday party kicked off with one grand-daughter acting as MC

                      

Let the feasting begin….

My table: note the ultra petite ultra tasty sushi rolls?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

First course of sweet and savour longevity buns

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Then came the delectable hor d'eurves

                

Steamed sea perch with chye poh

              

 

Chicken roulade: far surpasses the standard German version!

  

Bamboo pith on bed of tofu

     

Pumpkin soup with seafood treasures: good to very last drop!

       

Longevity noodles with langoustine

 

 

 

 

 

Double sweet endings: birthday cup cake n sago, mango soup

 

 

 

 

 

 

And so we say a warm goodnight to the birthday girl, happpy yet envious of her good long and happy life!

Party winding down as part of family gathers round the much-loved birthday girl

Today is 9/11 but spare a thought

for the hundreds of millions for whom the date is their birthday, wedding anniversary or other occasion for joy and thanks giving.

Oh sure, it was a ginormous heartbreaking tragedy — what happened at the World Trade Center and other hot spots in the United States, today 10 years ago.

Oh sure, the US has spent USD4 trilllion on its war on terror, a war chest that’s added by tens of thousands to the deaths of those who perished in the deliberate suicidal plane crashes on that fateful day a decade ago.

Oh sure, 9/11 was witnessed “live” by tens of millions across the globe on their TV screens and so the awful scenes are etched in the memory of tens of millions. But the blow-by-blow replaying of the tragic events of that day 3,650 days later does seem to err on the side of indulgence :(

I’ve three ex-school-mates who call 9/11 their birthday and last night we marked it with a satay party followed by desserts and a carrot cake, all made by the main celebrant’s children.

Yet because of all the high octane reminders that continue to be given worldwide every year immediately before, on and after their special day about a sad event that was not of their making, there’s always a pall of uneasiness over their celebrations.

In fact, it could even cause them to wonder internally whether it’s appropriate to feel joyful on a day the world has collectively, willy nilly designated as disastrous?

Hence I appeal to those who have made and continue to make much about what happened on 9/11, 2001 to bear in mind that there are others who were given this very day for joy and thankfulness — through no fault of theirs. Don’t inadvertently be their party pooper!

happy day for three

 
 

waiting for satay

 
 

where party was held

 
 
 
 

pomelo sorbet to cleanse the palate

 
 

crepe suzette swimming in orangge sauce

 

Very special 70th birthday

Amy Lam, a friend who is the mother of all intrepid travellers, noted in Face Book today that many people she knows were born on July 17 and she preceded to name them.

I can’t beat her in the numbers game (or the travelling game for that matter) but as a matter of fact, I’ve also got friends whose birthday fall on July 17 too! Two to be exact. One is a new one while the other I’ve known since 1981 :-D!

Our long and close friendship isn’t what’s remarkable. Rather, it’s the fact that this person has been terribly sick since the time we first met. Yet this friend has continued to survive and live to enjoy life — despite going into more comas than the number of husbands that Elizabeth Taylor had; despite my getting urgent calls every so often to go to hospital (NUH, TTSH, ME to name a few) in case it would be the last time etc

Yet believe it our not, this friend has just celebrated the landmark 70th birthday, today with close family members and last Thursday (July 14) with a large gathering of friends in a pre-birthday bash.

Food was informal: packaged by Yum Cha, accompanied by fried noodles prepared by the family’s maids and then followed by cake and tauhuey chui!

What’s the secret of this friend’s ability to stay happy, contented and positive despite a painful and debilitating illness?

I will put it down to the F-factors — Faith, Fight and Friends. Wish that more people in similarly drastic situations — whether from health and/or other problems — could learn to use the same tools for a longer, happier life :-D

yum cha to say yum seng to special day

 
 
 

truly miraculous 70th year!