Status
0

Another weekend. Current location: Milan.

Woke up this morning to a sunny morning. Flipped left and right on the bed, mind wandered. Just recently downloaded a game called Cryptogram and played for a good 30 minutes. Crawled out of bed lazily because I don’t have much planned for myself today. Did some yoga, listened to some music, and ready to go lake union from lunch.

And then, one of my colleagues told us that a colleague’s dad just passed on and she’s on her way back home.

Hmm.

Then I’m on my way to grab lunch. Trying out a new place, all by myself. It requires a little of walking and I’m not sure if it’s gonna be good, or even if it’s gonna be opened (learned my lesson yesterday, not only Italian restaurants have ciesta, they have summer break, so have a few backups restaurants to try because it might be closed during summer). And then, got me to think about life, a question that I constantly ask myself, though I know there’s never a certain answer for it.

Life is so general and personal. Everyone has one, but everyone’s different.

Life is so tough and fragile. It likes to throw so many challenges to us, yet it could be all gone the next moment.

Life is such that, we know we will never get out of it alive, and we take it for granted.

Life, you could totally live your life the way you want, simply because it is yours.

Advertisements
Gallery
0

Girls’ Trip to Milan (Day 3 and 4)

Without further delay, let’s get this started.

Girls’ trip to Milan. Ops! Is it 25th of August already? Lolz. I remember when I wrote day 1, it was 14th of July! =D Read Day 1 here.

And within two months, I’m back in Milan for the second time. It’s a hint for me to finish this post, I guess.

Anyway, day 3. We did a tour: day tour to Lake Como and Bellagio. It was pretty straight forward because there’s not much planning needed on our side. We just need to be present at the meeting place, which was right in front of the visitor center before 8 am.

There were a few other tour buses around that area, we just looked for the one that said our destination. We arrived slightly before 8 am and there was already a line of people waiting to board the bus. The tour lady gave each of us a radio and an earpiece as we boarded so we could tune into the channel and hear her as we walked around. We had to stay within a certain radius, of course, but it made the tour a lot easier as we could spread out a little while she was doing her explanation. It was not the old-school-tour-guide-with-a-megaphone kind of tour, which I appreciate.

It was about an hour drive from Milan to Lecco (where the Lake Como cruise is). We were given about an hour to walk around Lecco town, so we found a cafe to grab a bite. Mom and sister ordered some sandwich to share and I had a cup of cafe latte. I guess Italian really take pride in their coffee because even a simple cafe served a good cup of coffee! Hah! I was impressed. Haha. I’m impressed.

After breakfast, we walked around the town and learned that in Italy open market, only the owner is allowed to touch the produce. Unlike back in KL or most of the Asian open market I believe, you choose and pick your own produce. So one thing to take note of if we are to visit any Italy open market again.

If my memory serves me well, our meeting time was around 11 am and our cruise was about 15 minutes later. I remember the tour lady kept on reminding us to go to the right-hand side of the cruise as there’s more to see there, like beautiful houses, castle (was there like any castle?) and others. We found 3 seats on the right-hand side but we did not stay there for very long because we started to walk around and take pictures. I mean, there were so much more to explore, why stationary at one place right? We walked from deck to deck, front to back.

We cruised for 2 hours before we reached Bellagio.

We walked around Bellagio after we had an amazing lunch at a restaurant, which I tried very hard to get the name but I’m assuming it’s the restaurant next to Hotel Du Lac (I couldn’t recall the name) but they serve one of the best seafood. Do check out this restaurant if you do visit Bellagio. It’s recommended by our tour lady and we have enjoyed our lunch. And of course, what made things even better than what it already was the company and the conversation. It was one of the best meal the three of us had together for a very long time.

P1040243

Just Sis and the cruise.

We walked around Bellagio after we had an amazing lunch at a restaurant, which I tried very hard to get the name but I’m assuming it’s the restaurant next to Hotel Du Lac (I couldn’t recall the name) but they serve one of the best seafood. Do check out this restaurant if you do visit Bellagio. It’s recommended by our tour lady and we have enjoyed our lunch. And of course, what made things even better than what it already was the company and the conversation. It was one of the best meal the three of us had together for a very long time.

P1040248

Walking around Bellagio

P1040256

Sis from different angle

After 30 minutes of walking around and window shopping, we went back to the meeting point where we were supposed to board another cruise to go back to Lake Como, where our tour bus was parked to go back to Milan. And before that, we have granted ourselves the local favorite dessert – gelato!

See how happy we were with a gelato in our hands. Lol. Notice mama at the background with gelato in her hand too! Hehehe! And we were all smile before leaving Bellagio.

P1040263

One more picture of the lake.

We reached Milan Visitor Centre around 6 pm, where the day was still bright as though the day had not passed. Though we were quite exhausted from the bus ride and the very little walking we had, I suggested we went back to the hotel and unload some of the tiredness. But there was a mission not yet completed, the canal. I think the food tour lady from Day 2 was telling us about Naviglio Grande and we thought we could go yesterday but we didn’t. So despite the tiredness, our final decision was to still go back to our hotel, rest for a bit and then continue our journey to the famous Naviglio.

18558610_1442252359146379_3020486140274376687_o.jpg

Us.

Just this photo itself makes the whole trip worthwhile. Tired and satisfied. Us at Naviglio. Mother and daughters time. 🙂

We walked up and down along the canal trying to decide what to eat for dinner. Officina 12 was our dinner place because we didn’t want to eat at the White Rabbit. Lolz. There’s something about our family that, well, my family don’t eat rabbit. Haha. And I must say it was another pretty decent dinner and the portion was just nice and the taste was good to our likings. We left the restaurant with great satisfaction.


We had nothing much on day 4. No tour or places of interest to visit, just need to reach Orio Al Serio Airport by 4 pm (I think so) because sister was flying back to U.K. around 5 pm. And since it’s in another city, Bergamo, so we left the hotel around 2 pm so that we have a little time to play around. And that pretty much concluded our girls trip to Milan. We have got just-mama-and-me time after sister left. Coffee, sandwich, shopping, you know, just girls stuff.


Milan has ever become a special place to me. This is my second time here after the girls trip and I can’t believe it has been 3 months. It was the first time I brought my mom, just mom, on a trip and I am grateful that the set of crew was nice and everyone was taking care of us. I am even more grateful that sister managed to reschedule her timetable to accommodate to our trip and made it a memorable one for us. She hadn’t been spending her birthday with family for few years and even though she didn’t always spend her birthday home with the family she was always home. I’m glad that it was something for her as well. As for mom, it was a breakthrough for her to travel so far apart from dad since they got married and I’m glad that she took that step (whether it was being forced or she just let things flowed). Only if the both of them knew how much it meant to me. I hope I have made that trip as meaningful to them as to how they have made it so meaningful to me. =)

Ling’s Facebook album Mum’s Milan Trip – One step out of comfort zone

Gallery
0

Girls’ Trip to Milan (Day 2)

After a well rested night, we started day 2 with a food tour. Booked the Milan Food Tour online just two days before our departure to Milan. It was highly recommended by my cousin, who just visited Milan few weeks before us. It’s a 3-hours Food Tour in Brera, which is the oldest neighborhood in Milan, and the size of the group varies depending on how many people book the tour. There was about 9 of us that day which I’d thought it was a pretty good size.

The meeting point was in front of a pastry shop called Panificio Pattini. We arrived around 10 am and apparently that pastry shop was our first stop. After the headcount, we went in and were served with a cup of coffee of our choice (the tour lady recommended cappuccino) and a pastry, I think it was the pasticiotti (mini pastries or pies with a tender crust and rich ricotta or custard filling). The tour lady also explained how Italian loves to stand by the counter and talk to the barista while they prepare their coffee and newspapers that local reads. It was a quick coffee fix before we headed to our second stop – Parma & Co.

There were people inside the deli preparing for business around 11.15 am but it only opens to the public after 12 pm. Our tour group was allowed to go in and was served 3 different types of Parma ham and assorted cheese. The tour lady shared some history of the deli, different cuts and parts of a pig and how the selection of cow milk affect the taste of the cheese. So much input for a morning! Haha!

After that, we continued our tour with more walking, which was good for digestion since we have another 4 more stops to go. We walked about 500 meters and arrived at Grassi e Rossi. It is a gourmet grocery store and has 4.8 out of 5 stars rating on Google based on 5 reviews. It’s like a one-stop-for-all-your-pasta-needs and they do have some outdoor seating in case you are interested in having a quick bite before continuing your day. We were given one risotto alla Milanese each to taste. Basically, it’s a fried rice ball with melted cheese inside. That’s my understanding of this Milanese style risotto.

20170515_111919

And we finally arrived the 4th stop of our tour, Jamaica dal 1911 Ristorante bar. It’s a hundred and six years old bar, as you may have guessed from the name itself. Everything interior including furniture, tiles, bar setup and even the toilet is from more than a century ago! A bar that witnessed history. Haha! It is also a popular place for students to chill out especially it’s located near the Brera Academy of Fine Arts. And the bar printed its business card into a postcard! I love that idea so much because not only we could send the postcard home, we would have the name and address of the place we’ve been to printed on it! Who knows we might want to go back there again and we do not have to search everywhere to look for their name and address. Brilliant idea!

After finishing our drinks, we walked another 800 meters for some meatballs at Antico Pastificio Moscova. It’s an old pasta shop where they sell traditional Italian home-cook food supplies. We got to try two different types of meatballs: beef and veal, which I personally prefer the beef ones. One fun fact about this place is they can cook in your cookware. If you bring your own cookware, they will do the cooking for you, in your cookware. I’m guessing this is to reduce waste, like bring-your-own-tumbler-when-you-buy-coffee kind of idea, but it also makes it looks like you are the one who did the cooking! Hah! Another brilliant idea especially for those busy housewives who need a me-day once in a while.

20170515_125428

Could you guess what’s next?

.

.

.

.

YES! You guessed right. DESSERT! Hahaha! How could we complete a food tour in Milan without some gelato? So the next station, Tasta.

 

20170515_130916

Tasta

 

 

20170515_131323

Can you tell mom is pretty excited about the ice cream?

 

 

20170515_131737

My choice of gelato: Chocolate and cheese something. =D

They offer a variety of flavors, as most of the ice cream shops do, and I have yet to try all of them, but I do like my choice of chocolate and cheese. But according to mom and sister, they prefer the one they had the day before, which is located near Duomo. I did not get to try that (because I did not join them for the rest of Day 1) but this was not bad for my enjoyment.

By the time we finished our food tour, it was already 1.30 pm. We had been eating non-stop for the past 3 hours and it’s time for shopping. We walked around Brera and Sempione park for an hour or two, and then took a bus to Via Monte Napoleone and sat down at Pasticceria Cova, located along via Montenapoleone, the upscale shopping street in Milan, for some afternoon tea. It has a beautiful interior and offers a great selection of handcraft pastries, an ideal place to relax and chat after the long 3-hours walking.

We decided we can’t do much later that evening because we have booked our tour to Bellagio and Lake Como the day after. So we headed to Don Raffaele for some pizza and pasta before calling it a day.

Hah! The second half of the day was pretty free and easy considering we did not have anything planned specifically, except for enjoying the mother and daughters time. It was also sister’s birthday so we got her a slice of cake from Don Raffaele (Cova has a good selection of pastries but not so much on cakes) and had our small celebration back in the hotel. There was nothing big but I think she had enjoyed the day! Lolz!

 


Day 3 and 4 will be out somewhere in the week. Stay tuned!

 

LogoMaker-1492498644193

 

Gallery
1

Girls’ Trip to Milan (Day 1)

This is a long due post. I’ve already known how to begin this post but I just couldn’t get myself to sit down to do it. But I’ve decided, today is the day. I will not postpone it anymore.

It was something impromptu. It only took less than two days to decide, a few days to plan and execute (well, it was just a short trip).

When I knew I was going to Milan, I asked mom if she’d like to join me on that trip. Mom, who does not travel very often and had never traveled without my dad, hesitated a little when I asked. I booked her ticket either way and left the final decision to her. There was so much uncertainty.

As time went by, I knew mom was mentally preparing herself for the trip, though I told myself there might a slight chance of mom decided not to go in the end. To mom, traveling is a challenge. People might not, and will not understand why, but traveling without my dad made things even more challenging for her. I went on planning our stay and itinerary, on the other hand, hoping she could get over the obstacles, and will finally decide to come along.

Long story short, two days before the trip, I went home and saw mom took out their fuschia medium-sized cargo bag. She was excitedly waiting for me to go back and pack with her! I was excited too because it was finally happening! I was going to Milan with mom! Yay! =D

On the departure day itself, the entire family sent us to KLIA and we had breakfast after checked-in. We had about 10 hours of transit time in Singapore.

20170513_122454_HDR

Me and Mom at holding room. Can you see there’s some color code going on here? =D

We had a quick lunch after we reached Singapore and got ourselves some snacks for the 12 hours flight.

Fast forward to 20-hours later, we had finally arrived in Milan! There was suppose to be a surprise for mom at Malpensa Airport but it did not happen until we checked in to the hotel and it became another form of surprise.

 

20170514_101755_HDR

Waiting at the bus stop. Can you see it?

20170514_101744_HDR(1)

Ta-da! The surprise was here! How many of you actually spotted her in the first photo? Hah! =D

Sister was supposed to hold a Welcome to Milan paperboard at the arrival hall, but she missed the earlier coach and arrived an hour after we left the airport, so she came to the hotel instead, pretending to deliver room service. Mom was resting while she heard someone knocked on the door. Confused but she went to answer the door anyway because I wasn’t moving. She literally took 2 seconds realize what just happened. =D Good job sister! And then, we officially started our girls’ trip in Milan!

First thing first, breakfast! We were starving because it was almost 11 am and we had not had breakfast. We took the bus to town and started looking for restaurants that are recommended by TripAdvisor. Unfortunately, I forgot to check the opening hour and most of the restaurants do not open until noon. Starved and left with little choice, we walked into the first cafe called Di Viole Di Liquirizia to get the hunger fixed.

It was a small but crowded cafe, we sat down after ordering. The cafe only offers Italian menu, but the owner, who is also the one who baked everything in the cafe, explained the menu to us in English. We ordered two cakes and a scone, and I say definitely go for the cakes! They were so good and the owner was friendly too! If you walk passed the cafe, check it out!

After the sweet treats, we weren’t that hungry anymore, but we still need something substantial to last us for the rest of our day, so we went to another restaurant, Mo Puglia Bistrot, which is about 5 minutes walk from the cafe.

20170514_122131.jpg

I remember we ordered another two dishes but I must have forgotten to take a photo so I could only share these two, which I do not recall the name. The one on the left was some sort of salad and the one on the right was some chef recommended pasta. I would say they weren’t bad but we couldn’t finish them probably because of the cakes we had earlier on. So yeah, maybe I’ll go back again someday and try their food to have a better thought about them.

After lunch, we walked around the area before went to Zani Viaggi to book the Lake Como and Bellagio day trip. You could totally visit Lake Como and Bellagio on your own, which is more cost saving and flexible in terms of how much time you get in Lake Como and Bellagio respectively, but we did the tour instead, which cost us €89 per person, because I thought it would be easier for us since we do not speak Italian. The experience with the information counter in Zani Viaggi wasn’t pleasant which was quite disappointing. Being a visitor center of the city, the staffs were not even close to friendly. Maybe next time I should just get everything booked online instead.

After booking the tickets, we decided to go to the supermarket near our hotel and load up our food supply. Mom and sister rested a little before heading out again while I stayed in for the remaining of day one, to have proper rest before the beginning of day two.

 


I didn’t intend to break this into a few posts but I guess I have to. My style is normally put everything together because I thought it would be more organized and I prefer to tell a story at one go. I’ve known I will take hours to complete this post because it is about a trip that happened 2 months ago and I will need more time to recall what happened and I’m still trying to get the momentum. But this is taking much longer than I’ve expected so I have no choice but to take a break at Day 1 and continue with Day 2 hopefully tomorrow if not the day after. I will try to complete this trip as soon as possible because as I’ve mentioned in the beginning of the post, this is way overdue. Thank you for your patience and thanks for dropping by! Till then!

 

cropped-logomaker-1492498885445.png

0

Pray for the World

今早reporting的时候,得知巴黎恐怖袭击事件。
工作完了,回到酒店,电视新闻报道的,脸书IG分享的,99%离不开这个新闻。
想到的第一件事(其实也太迟才想到,应该今早还没工作前就做了)就是跟家人报平安,因为他们没有我的时间表。

然后,浏览脸书好久好久,很多#prayforParis,大家都纷纷为巴黎感到悲伤。

许多公众人物也借着这个平台表示悲伤后,引来各种回应。

在这几千甚至几万的回应当中,就会有人提到说世界的另一个角落(例如中东国家),常常发生这种状况,为何却没有人为他们祈祷等等的言论。

然后,一些特别敏感的话题(例如宗教和政治)也会被牵扯进来。

谢谢网路世界,提供了一个零距离零时差的平台,让大家分享自己的想法。

然而,这个零距离零时差的平台也是各位键盘战士的战场。

Continue reading

Image
0

小黄花

那天去机场的路上,一个红绿灯前,马路的旁边,看到这群小黄花,立刻联想到哥本哈根他为我摘的小黄花。

那是他送我的第一朵花。哈哈哈哈。
随性的浪漫,射手座的本性。(哈哈哈哈,有浪漫吗?)

还刚刚搜索小黄花的花语:温暖我的心
(有一片报道是说李心潔在雲南遇到她生命中最珍貴的小黃花,「我仔細看着小黃花,發覺它們的花瓣是心形的,這些小黃花用它們的花瓣表達對這世界的愛,令我十分感動。」,但是我找不到心形花瓣!下次还真的要近距离研究… 不然,我们说的到底是不是同一个小黄花啊? 哈哈哈哈)

道路之所以变得多一点色彩,是小黄花的小小功劳,为繁忙的道路带来一点点的生命.. 啊不然就是只有汽车和引擎声(最近看太多台湾综艺节目,感觉自己有点在抄他们的说话方式… @@”)。

多少人察觉小黄花的存在呢?

Image
0

Life is a subtraction

人生是减法;见一面,少一面。

Translation: Life is a subtraction; the chances of meeting only get lesser and lesser.

There is newborn every day.

But there is also death every day.

It is very easy to talk about life but when it occurs, how would you handle it?

So on this trip from Singapore to London, there was this gentleman, traveling alone.

He was seated on the other aisle, so I didn’t have much chance to serve him.

I’ve only learned about him from Van, my partner, who chatted with him when he came to the snack corner, that he is doing an Asia trip for his wife, who passed away recently. From San Francisco, Japan, Hong Kong, Bangkok, to London, then back to San Francisco. 29 days.

Then, he came to the snack corner for the second time. I went forward, and we started chatting.

I did not ask how. I couldn’t.

Instead, I asked how did they meet.

They were introduced to each other through a friend. It wasn’t loved at the first sight. In fact, they didn’t like each other that much in the beginning. But, you know, if it is meant to be, it is meant to be.

39 years of marriage. They have a daughter who is turning 29 years old this 29th. Apparently, they love to travel. He showed me some photos of her on his phone. From Paris to London. He said his wife loves Hong Kong. They had been staying in HK for years. And they planned to do an Asia trip together.

It was just, perhaps a less than 15 minutes conversation, but it touched both Van and my heart as he was talking. It was nothing fancy but we could feel his love towards his wife. A lot of love. And the love has been increasing every day. He is a proud and happy man whenever he talks about her.

As I’m writing this post, I somehow relate this gentleman with Mr. Lee Kuan Yew. His passing is definitely one of the saddest news to the world and videos of Mr. Lee are shared all over the internet. Mr. Lee was not only famous for being a successful politician, he was a loving husband who’d read poems to Mrs. Lee every night despite his tight daily schedule when she was not well. And it all goes down to one reason, LOVE.

Love has no age.

Love has no race.

Love has no rank.

Love has no gender.

And love has no time limit.

 

Love wholeheartedly.

Love unconditionally.

Love like there is no tomorrow.