25 March 2014

On a Blogging Break

Hello Everyone! I hope you are having a great week so far! I know I haven't  blogged in a while and felt it was time to take a much needed break. I will be back in a month or two but till then , i will away from the virtual world .

I want to thank all those of you who have emailed me asking if everything was alright. Everything is, its just that i need some time away from the blogging world to regain my mojo. I intend to hopefully get back  all refreshed and rejuvenated! :)

Blogging is a hobby that i enjoy immensely . I love writing as well as reading the posts of all my awesome blogging friends out there! So, i hope to see you all very soon .

Before i sign off, i wanted to give out a few shout outs:

1. Expat Focus - My blog was listed under the 'recommended expat blogs for Singapore'. The full article is Here. Thank you and i appreciate it! :)

2. Renuka - The lovely renuka from Voyager for life, listed me as one of the top ten women bloggers she follows. Full article is Here. Renuka is such a talented blogger and i enjoy reading her posts. So, a big thank you ! Do check out her awesome blog.

“ Sometimes a break from your routine is the very thing you need”
Il be back! Till then , much love :)
17 February 2014

Volcanic Eruption near Yogyakarta

Last weekend, to celebrate Valentine’s Day and my husband’s birthday, we booked our flights to Yogyakarta. This was initially supposed to be a weekend getaway but to celebrate these two special occasions, we decided to club the getaway into a romantic escapade. From Yogyakarta,, we would be driving 90 minutes to reach the temples of Borobudur where we would stay for 03 days.
On Friday morning, we were excited and reached the airport at 06 am for our flight at 8. After checking in , we were waiting near the boarding gate when the airline staff approached us.
“There has just been a volcano eruption near Yogyakarta”.
Just like us, everyone else had a stunned expression on their faces. All of a sudden, a volcano had erupted! How often does that happen?  
“The flight is cancelled”, the airline staff continued. “We will make alternative arrangements for you to fly to Semarang and then travel 03 hours to Yogyakarta by road”.
As I heard this I looked at D and told him that I didn’t have a good feeling about this. We should just cancel the trip. The volcano had started erupting and could affect our return flight as well. Not to mention, the ash from the volcano could blanket Yogyakarta and be a health hazard.
After thinking for a while, D went ahead and cancelled the flights and the hotels.
This is how Borubur looks on a normal day at sunrise :

 Borobudur , photo courtesy Trey Ratcliff

This is what Yogyakarta and  Borobudur looked like on the weekend. 

Photo Courtesy BBC

   
Aircraft covered in Volcanic Ash

  While i was shocked looking at the pictures, i was glad that we cancelled the trip alltogether. Praying for the people of Indonesia. Hope things get back to normal soon. 


12 February 2014

A Twisted Ankle and Kindness by a Singapore Cab Driver

Yesterday, after finishing a client meeting in town, I was waiting for a cab. The taxi stand had a few people waiting in queue. Soon, it was my turn as a blue taxi came and screeched to a halt in  front of me . Absent mindedly I took a step forward not realizing that it was a raised surface. Within seconds, I lost my balance , twisted my foot and fell.
 
Everything went still as I was falling.. slowly, as though in a dream.
 
I heard gasps and screams from the people who were standing behind me. "Oh my God", a voice uttered in my head. "It must look really bad for them to scream".
 
As I stood there, balancing myself with a hand on the taxi, I felt a sharp pain in my ankle. Slowly, my brain started to go into  shock as I quickly got hold of myself and somehow managed to sit in the cab. Tears slowly welled up in my eyes .
 
The cab driver looked shocked and said, "miss, are you ok"?!
 
I gathered all my courage and managed to say a few words as the pain was slowly making me delusional.
 
"Yes Uncle", I said in a low voice. "I am ok".
 
"Aaah, he said,"you must take care of that foot". He quickly took out a medicated Chinese oil and handed it to me. I was holding my foot writhing in pain
 
"Put it on your foot", he insisted. "the swelling will go down".
 
I refused but he kept insisting. "Trust me", he said, "this oil is very good. It will help".
 
Grateful for his concern, I took the oil and started applying it on my foot as the taxi uncle started driving me to my destination.
 
"You must massage your foot with it", he said showing me the motion on his hand. " I will drive you home and you must put warm water on it, ok!".
 
I kept massaging my foot during the journey with the Chinese oil. The oil which is made with Chinese herbs is very effective but pungent. Uncle kept coughing because of the smell but didn't complain. After applying it for a few minutes, I thanked him and returned the bottle.
 
During the journey, tears kept welling up in my eyes. Apart from being extremely embarrassed, I was in utter pain. Thank god for the oil which seemed to control the swelling.
 
As I reached home and the taxi came to a halt, uncle turned back again and said, "Are you ok to walk?". I nodded as I looked at the meter that read $11. I quickly took out a $20 note and handed it to uncle.
 
"Keep the change uncle", I said "and thank you for being so nice".
 
He looked shocked as there is no culture of tipping in Singapore. Even though its not practiced here but tips are usually met with immense gratitude.
 
Uncle tried to give the change back and I said, "please keep it".
 
"Thank you . Thank you ,he said with gratitude. "Please put your foot in warm water" . I nodded.
 
As I got down from the cab, uncle waited till I reached the gate. I slowly limped towards my house and in my mind, I couldn't thank uncle enough.
 
That evening, after my foot was bandaged and resting, I wrote an appreciation letter to the taxi company commending the driver.
 
Mr Quek Hong Leong, driver of comfort cab SHC8488M, if you are reading this, Thank you and may God bless you.
 
The Kind cab driver Mr Quek Hong Leong
 
My swollen foot
                          
You may remember, that I strongly believe in Guardian Angels, well he was no less than one!