Monday, 27 December 2010

Missed (and almost missed) flights

In the spirit of my missed flight on Christmas eve, I started thinking about all the other times that I had missed, or almost missed my flights...

  • Vientiane, Laos on August 2010 - Missed the connecting flight from Kuala Lumpur to Singapore when the flight from Vientiane to Kuala Lumpur was delayed for more than two hours. Ended up staying overnight in Kuala Lumpur before flying off the next morning. Wrote about the adventure here!
  • USA on October 2008 - The flights were from Orlando, Florida to JFK Airport in New York, with connecting flight to Singapore. The connection was too close and the terminals were too far apart. Missed the connection and had to wait for 24 hours for the next flight. Stayed in an airport nearby for the night and spent the next day in JFK until the evening flight home.
  • Australia in 2002 or 2003 - During my study break when I was in Canberra, the flight home was Canberra - Sydney - Singapore - Penang. The Sydney to Singapore flight was delayed due to technical problem and missed the connecting flight to Penang. Luckily, Singapore Airlines provided accommodation, dinner and transportation for the night before arranging for the next morning's flight. 
  • Singapore 1999 or 2000 - Almost missed the flight from Singapore to Penang as I was late for check-in. Had to beg the kind lady at the Singapore Air counter to let me check-in. She allowed me to check-in with my luggage but warned me that the luggage may not arrive on time. Had to ran to the get in order to make the flight. Luckily, my luggage was on the same flight as me. 
  • On another flight from Australia to Penang during my studies in Australia, my baggage did not come out from the conveyor belt. It was stranded in Kuala Lumpur on my Sydney - Kuala Lumpur - Penang flight. The airline sent my lost luggage to my house the day after.
Luckily, most of the flights I had missed was due to the airline, in one way or the other. So, in a way, it was the first time that I overslept and missed my flight. Hopefully, it will also be the last time.

{ Photo is from We Heart It }

Friday, 24 December 2010

Missed my flight!


Note to self:
Do not buy morning flight when you're not a morning person!
(or just stay up all night until your flight)

Missed my flight. I had to buy new tickets. 
And now, I'll have less than two and a half days in Penang.

{ Photo is from We Heart It }

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

MADE


From Jason Mraz's blog. The first word he saw was "secrets". Mine was "made". What's yours?

Baby, It's Cold Outside

It's that time of the year when we think of snow, fireplace, presents under the trees... 
but being here in Singapore, guess we can only think of lights.
 But that should not and would not stop us from enjoying all that Christmas has to offer!

My favourite song this Christmas is Baby, It's Cold Outside.
It is unconventionally sang by two males - Kirk and Blaine from Glee. 
Enjoy the song and, even if it is not cold outside,
I hope that there are reasons that are keeping you indoor!
Have a great holiday with your love ones.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Monday, 20 December 2010

Sakura at picture perfect Himeji-jo

{ Japan April 2010 - Day 8 - Himeji }

The plan was to spend half a day in Himeji, but due to some delay in leaving Osaka, we only managed to reach Himeji late afternoon. The main, if not only, reason tourists flock to Himeji is to visit the Himeji-jo - the Himeji Castle. Once we reached Himeji, we walked along the (presumably) main road that leads right up to the castle. We were able to catch glimpses of the castle along the way. Once we got there, two things caught my eyes: (1) the number of people all around the area (2) the sign board that seems to be saying that it will be closing at 4pm which did not give us much time.

Undeterred, we walked all the way in to the ticketing counter and ask the officer if we can still visit the castle. After some slow Japanese (which doesn't help with our comprehension) and hand signals, we figured out that the last entry is at 4pm but the castle is open till 5. So, we bought our tickets and walked right up to the main castle. The main castle was a five level wooden structure, and we climbed up the steep stairway up the the highest level. There were some displays of guns and swords along the way, but apart from that, the highlight of the climb would be the view from the top floor. Thereafter, we explored the castle grounds and other buildings before the castle closed for the day.


Himeji-jo was considered as one of the most magnificent and best preserved castle in Japan, and it was easy to see why. We were lucky to be there when the many sakura trees around the compound was blooming in all its glory. If you happened to be in Japan during the sakura season, do go to Himeji for all the picture-perfect views!


::: Footnotes :::

{ How to get to Himeji 姫路 } From Osaka, we took the Shinkansen to Himeji which took around 30 minutes using our 7 day Japan Rail Pass. The Japan Rail Pass is only valid for the hikari and kodama trains, but not on the faster nozomi trains. It can easily be done as a day trip from nearby cities like Osaka and Kyoto.

{ Himeji-jō 姫路城 } Himeji Castle is the reason for making a trip to Himeji. An entry fee of 600 yen needs to be paid and it is opened from 9am to 5pm from September to May, and to 6pm from June to August. The castle is amazing with one main central tower which can be seen from the main road off the train station. It is 15 to 20 minutes walk from the train station.

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Weekend beach holidays



I had two very different beach holiday over the past two months. 

The first was a drive up from Singapore to Peninsular Malaysia's East Coast. We managed to cover quite a distance and visited a few small towns within three days.

And last weekend, we went to Bintan Resort which was less than an hour ferry ride from Singapore. It is in the Indonesian Bintan Island but mainly targeted for Singapore tourist. We basically did nothing but walked around the beach and soaked in the sun. 

Both had been interesting in its own ways, and I promise that I'll write about both soon!

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

city in colour


How often do you see colours when you travel?

Saw this blog little brown pen. It takes colour into a whole new meaning!
Check out her blog with lots of photos in her collection of Paris in colour

It does make you wonder.
What colours are there in the last city you went to?
So, here's my version of....

japan in red


Monday, 6 December 2010

Got myself a date with Michael Bublé

Almost a year ago, I wrote a post on how much I wish to watch Michael Bublé live in concert.
Well, guess what?! He is coming to Singapore on 9 March 2011!


The tickets went on sale on 24 November 2010, and I went to buy about 3 hours after it opened. I thought I would be on the first few rows but I ended up with tickes on the 13th row! Oh, well, at least I am going to see him live! Can't wait!

To those of you who has yet to buy the tickets, please do so before they run out! And, to check if he is coming to your city, do check his website for his tour dates. Having watched his recorded concerts, I am pretty sure that it would be an amazing experience!

Here is his latest single, Hollywood, for your listening pleasure...


{ Photo is from Michael Bublé's website }

italia ti amo

I want to go to Italy!

Pasta, pizza, gondolas, vespa, art, beauty, cafe, gelato, and all things Italian.
Really have to start planning for a holiday in Europe soon!


{ Photos are from We Heart It

Sunday, 5 December 2010

To see Penang with fresh tourist eyes!

Every time I'm back in my hometown, Penang, I told myself that I will try to see the city with fresh tourist eyes - to explore, to experience and to see all that Penang has to offer. I have left Penang for more than 10 years but had been going home at least a few times a year. No matter where I have been, Penang is, and will always be close to my heart.

Reading an article in the New York Times entitled "In Malaysia, Tourists are Lured By George Town's Colorful Past" brought back the tourist side of me. It reminded me of the many reasons I love about Penang - how it is growing and developing rapidly, and yet all the rich history and culture continued to be part of Penangites' daily lives. A quote from the article describes Penang's cultural heritage...
All of this builds on a unique multi-ethnic and multi-religious heritage. The legacy of waves of immigrants from Europe, the Middle East and other parts of Asia over several hundred years is writ large in the city’s architecture and the seemingly constant street theater of its religious festivals and celebrations. The muezzin’s call from the Kapitan Keling Mosque is answered by bells rung across the street at the Sri Mahamariamman Temple; the clack of mah-jongg tiles drifts from the doorways of Chinese clan and trade associations, and small-scale trades like tinsmithing and incense production are still practiced.
I promised that I will look at Penang with fresh tourist eyes when I'm back home! Who knows what would be in store for me? 

Goddess of Mercy (or Kuan Yin) Temple - The oldest Chinese temple in Penang

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