Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Recap of Year 2008

It's come to the last day of year 2008.

I clearly remember the exact same day this time last year, I was feeling anticipated about the new year. I made resolutions, kept half of it, and maintained the other half for 2009.

I knew 2008 was going to be a bumpy ride for me back then, I knew it would be a turning point of my life, I knew things were going to get pretty exciting and I knew I was going to take a huge leap in life.

And it did.

Things did turn out extremely well in 2008 for me.

It was good year. It went so well that I hardly ever noticed it going by, by the time I realised, the year has walked passed me swiftly, like the wind, and I have grown another year older and wiser.

Let's do a recap.

Since the begining of 2008, I was convinced that the year 2008 was going to be splendid for me. I had a good feeling about it. Everything was going to be fantastic, I just knew it.


In January, I organised a fund raising campaign for the first time in my life.

money


Raised RM3400 in cash and over RM10,000 worth of goods. Found happiness is making others happy.


I wanted to travel the whole of Malaysia, covered every state as a mark of my life long globe trotting journey. You know, as a start.

I did more than that.

By February, I changed my decision and decided to start my globe trotting early.

I flew to Kota Kinabalu, (Total: 2 weeks)

boat dive

obtained my first diving license in Sipadan.


In March, I travelled to Laos. (Total: 5 weeks in Indo-China)

flying woman at pha that luang


In April, travelled to Thailand.

nicolekiss journey into thailand and cambodia


Celebrated Songkran festival, in Bangkok & Chiang mai.

me at songkran festival


Crossed border to Myammar for a day.

permit to enter burma


Cross over to Cambodia on train and taxi.

red hair pose 2


Visited the Angkors on a cycle.

Become Angelina Jolie wannabe for a day.

threesome_small


Given an offer to become a weekly columnist in Starmetro by the the month of May.

two third column


Got a new laptop.

Got a new phone (from my brother).

Picked up wine tasting.

Sailed on a yacht for the first time in Langkawi. (Total: 4 days)

nicole on westin heavenly bed


Fell in love with Westin Langkawi's heavenly bed.

Travelled to China in June. (Total: 2 weeks)

standing in rainy guangzhou


Hangzhou, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen to be exact.

Moved out of my condo in Puchong.

Organised my first Blogger Familiarization Trip to Southern Thailand. (Total: 5 days)

_KHO4615


Created I LOVE TRAVEL group on facebook.

i love travel


Went back to Langkawi again. (Total: 1 week)

Had lobster sashimi.

lobster sashimi


Travelled to Australia in August. (Total: 5 weeks)

nicolekiss australia journey


Picked up snowboarding.

me doing the back slide


Met Juan Mann, Free Hug Guy, in Sydney.

group photo


Featured on FHM in September.

my feature on fhm


Became a contributor and wrote three travel articles for FHM.

my upgrade travel in fhm


Missed a flight to Shanghai in June.
Missed a flight back to Malaysia from OZ in September.
Missed a flight, again, to Manado, in the same month.

Flew to Manado, Indonesia for diving. (Total: less than a week)

diving with gerald in bunaken


Moved to Thailand. (Total: 3 months)

Went to another two Familiarization trips in Thailand: I-san province in the North East and Hua Hin in central Thailand. 6 days trip each.

perfect cowgirl shot
Won best cowgirl costume during Isan trip.


Took photo with Minister of Sports and Tourism of Thailand.

me and the minister of sports and tourism


Launched my online boutique in October.

Print


Moved back to Malaysia in December.

Went to Singapore for Christmas. (Total: 10 days)

christmas bunny nicole_not so heavy make up watermark


Had my heart broken. Then had my feet swept off the ground.

Finally finished my last master thesis.

Like every year, lost quite a few friends, met lots of great friends too.

In total, spent about 214 days travelling in 2008. 200 days of which out of the country.


Was it an eventful year? Maybe.

If you asked me, I thought the year flew by too blinking fast.

What does 2009 have installed for me, seriously, I don't know. And to be completely honest, I'm actually rather scared of the year 2009. What kind of fate does life bring forward to me this time round? I really couldn't bear thinking about it. I can't quite put it in words as to why I feel this way. I just don't anticipate the new year like I did last year, for some odd unknown reasons.

Maybe it's because of recession, maybe it's because my change of perception on love, or the fact that I have finally completed my last paper and awaiting my markings from my professor. Am I to graduate soon? What then? I've fiddled with the idea of pursuing my PHD, but my parents would probably kill me. Part of me still wants to see the world, part of me wants to settle down.

I have plans. Yes I do. And I can see them being carried out slowly in the year ahead. No doubt there are a lot of uncertainties, and I can't help but to feel edgy about all these possibilities, good and bad.

But heck, what else can I do, but to brace myself and shout back at life:

me ready for songkran


Whatever it is, Bring It On!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

My New Sunnies

My new fetish.

new sunnies


Glasses half the size of my face.

They're the new in thing.

sunny groupies


Everyone has to got to have one.


ps// last two days of year 2008. OMG. I'm scared~!

pps// the new year eve cruise has been postponed due to insufficient paid passengers. Sigh~ Guess god wants me to spend time with my family this year. Not bad actually~

Sunday, December 28, 2008

It's been some time

since I actually feel very enthusiastic about blogging.

Every other time it just feels like I have to blog because there were so many places I've been to that I wanted to share with my readers, but I feel like I'm rushing against time to get them posted up before any of them get too backdated till there's no point blogging about them anymore.

looking at birds
Nose-flaring glare


But as the holiday sinks in and with so many people going offline or just not active online, I feel myself unwinding after a week of relaxing, waking to go online, chill, chat a bit, write a few lines, log into my friends4sale in facebook to earn that $100,000, really allowed me to take a FAR step back, re-evaluate my objectives.

massive sunglass
Self re-evaluating


And blog, is, really, afterall, for fun.

me and stone parrots
FUN


Anyway, after years of planning, I've finally took the plunge to camwhore with the one, not the only, MER-LION.

me and merlion


Yea, it's not your signature Merlion that spits water, this one squirts from the back and it's way bigger than the original one. It's the one at Sentosa.

sentosa


Lesson of the country: NEVER EVER EVER EVER visit Sentosa during peak period, like Christmas season of any other festive holiday, in fact, don't go to Singapore during Christmas and for New Year Eve at all.

It's insane.

The crowd is insane, the people are insane, the humidity is insane, the construction and amount of buildings are insane.

construction sights
This is called construction sights.


I never knew I have claustrophobic till I went to Sentosa two days ago.


Singapore is to tiny, everywhere you turn, there's people, crowd, and people queuing up.

To take photo in a supposedly for-display-only santa slay, for ice cream, for donoughts, for bakgua, for restaurants, for LV bags (no queue at Chanel though), even to go up a melaka-look-alike observational tower in Sentosa (i know i know, Melaka's copied after theirs, but it still reminds me of Melaka).

sentosa tower at lookout


I wanted to go for this 4D magix and Cineblast rides in Sentosa but was immensely put down the amount of people.

queue at sentosa


I mean long queue.

queue at sentosa 2


No, I really mean LONGGGGGG queue.

queue at sentosa 3


Like shit, that's like a 3-4 hours queue, easily.

Queue 3 hours for a ride?! I rather fly to Hong Kong disneyland and back. -.-



PS: I love love Singapore. OMG, their pork ribs at Tony Roma's are AMAZING!
And and and I AM SO going to Takashimaya and Robinsons to finish my shopping tour today!!!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

My Christmas Night

Christmas came. Finally.

As the evening approached, I applied my Geo contacts and eyelashes, fluffed up my hair (which was curled later in the evening by the amazing hair curler guy in Vivocity), put on a stunning a gown bought as a Christmas present, and heels too high for my own good, called a cab and headed out for a promising evening.

me in dinner gown


This was the first Christmas I spent with my brother, over a lovely dinner at Sushi Tei, a Japanese restaurant I've come to fancy in Singapore's Vivocity.

In trio we took a stroll around the sky park where festive lights greeted us in delight.

christmas tree reflection in sky park


It was a very romantic evening stroll.

sky park in vivocity


corridor in sky park


Big bright X'mas trees never failed to impress in Singapore.
Everywhere I turn there's a larger than life tree erected from the ground, showered with balls and rainbow color lights, garnished with a star too bright perked happily on top.

christmas tree in vivocity


We bought a wine from the mall, and headed down to Clark Quay for a quick last minute drink. Big brother left home after guiding us all the way there. So sweet! ^^

Walking down Clark Quay brought back a lot of memories, creating new ones with each step laid.

clark quay


self potrait


photo of me in dinner gown


Over the years I've come to realised the journey of life I've walked on. How difficult, long winded and ironic it has been. How life turns out the way it is and how we all, from different parts of the world, would meet under the same sky, the same starry night. How we've been hurt, healed and learnt from our mistakes.

And as the end of the tunnel, it still turns out. Like it always has been. Better, if not then worse. It didn't matter, for we live as we live, and appreaciate who we are, what we have, how we come along in life.

I treasure this hand I'm holding. This moment of bliss, of pleasure, of happiness.

This very moment.

wine and rose


Forgive me if I ever trance out, muting every period of so, for I am drown in the wordless world, full of love, imagination, admiration, and everything that is beyond words.

And how every gesture made's breathless, remarkably kind, amazing and sweet.

love letter


How long can I keep this hand, clasp tightly in mine? Embrace this warmth? How long till the road ends, till life decides to put a full stop?

What is ours to say? For life is as uncertain as the ripples on the water on a rainy day.

Is forever ever after's a decision our right to keep?

Nay.

But for as long as I can wake up every morning, sleep every night, as long as the senses are still tingling inside;

I will treasure every living second,

fight to keep this warming hand,

savor every chance of peering at that adoring curve of lips, that cheeky grin, that alluring smile, those infectious laughters.

That broad shoulder,
that tight grip,
that soft gesture,
the kind words,
the sweet smell of cologne,
those annoying silly accents,
that deep husky voice,
those tears of care, empathy, worry and love,
that warm feeling when I lie my head to sleep on that lap,
those sweats on that forehead when an alio pasta's specially whipped for me from the kitchen,
but most of all,

that sweet, indescribable, overflowing, intense, comforting, soft, heartbreaking and everything beautiful under the sky...

that love.


self pose


Yes. That love.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas 2008 from Singapore!

Merry Christmas everyone!!

me and mini santa hat

All the way from Singapore.


in front of lim chee guan
Oh yea.. the MOST famous "bak gua" (bbq pork) in Singapore that cost a bomb during CNY. Thank god it's Christmas so there's no queue.


This is my famous Christmas tree.

me and teddy tree


Things I do during Christmas Eve 2008 in Singapore:

1. Have dinner with my be-awesome brother.

drink with my brother


First time in a long time. Woo! PROGRESS!


2. Eat Mushroom Swiss Melt in Coffee Club in Orchard road.

swiss mushroom melt at coffee club


An unexpected discovery two years ago when I was being a vegetarian and landed in Coffee Club, it was the only thing without meat.

And god it was the yummiest thing I've ever tasted.


3. Eat Bak Gua.

fine dining bak gua


Fine dining style.

No la, it's just the coin shaped bak gua from Lim Chee Guan topped with a piece of parsley.
Must eat with style one ma~!


4. Look at expensive car riding down Orchard Road.

white lambogini on orchard road

White Lambogini. Oh la la...

One day.. mark my words, one day.


5. Wear a mini santa hat

me with mini santa hat


Don't see it small small. Cost bloody SGD 5 le~ (Charity ma~)


6. Stand in the middle of the street to take snapshot of the street lights.

middle of orchard road


Kids, don't attempt this anywhere else. Nicolekiss is not liable for your safety.


7. look at kids and Blagadeshies (or Indians) spray foam all over the street.

guys playing foam spray


You can join in the fun if you want.

spraying foam on orchard road


Be warned, it might get nasty (not as bad as Songkran festival in Thailand but this is foam we are talking about)




8. Finally. Find the biggest grandest prettiest Christmas tree in Orchard road and take photo with it.

spectacular christmas tree


Tree. I chose you!

me and christmas tree in orchard road


Happy Holidays everyone! Ho Ho HO!