Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Melbourne..and the rest of Victoria

It was a good holiday, with scrumptious food, cool weather and plentiful fun and sunny days. And it was a great family trip including Andrew's initiation into the Toh family. All was missing was just Imny and JE.....

Melbourne city was not very impressive, but then, perhaps it just goes to show that Australia is not all about skyscrapers and malls. We stayed in Prahran the first night. Then headed on to our farm stay at Lavender Farm in Healesville, Yarra Valley. 2 nights there. On our mission to the Great Ocean Road, we stayed at Torquay for 2 nights. And then the last night was back at Melbourne in Swanston Street.

The farm stay was magnificent. Reminded me of New Brunswick with the warm fireplace, friendly dogs, lemon trees and lavender everywhere. Breakfast was our loot from Coles, lunch and dinner at Healesville town. We went to GiantStepsInnocentBystander, which was a winery that carries Innocent Bystander and Giant Steps wine. Fine food and great cosy place.
We did made our way to Healesville Sanctuary so that the pesky kids can see koalas and kangaroos. Also to the Dandenongs that was most impressive.....but that was till we got to the Great Ocean Road...

Torquay was the next destination, tourist-y seaside haven, sis found a great bungalow to stay and i half-believed Andrew when he said that it looks like the place from those mags we see. But migosh, it was modern, fuss-free, patio, spacious to die for. It got my brother-in-laws to check out the classified, and found out most of those properties were only AUD300K. In Singapore, I dont think u can get a landed property for SGD1mil. Hey, and this place is near near near the beach! We live in a rat's world compared to the Aussies....

Anyways, the following day we headed off on our mission to see the 12 Apostles. Made stops at Lorne and Apollo Bay. And that was as far as we've got coz of pesky nephew, the winding road, and I guess not all of us wants to see more rocks formation. haha. Ohwell, next time maybe.

The last night at Melbourne was well spent. We met up with our cousins who have migrated there years ago. Yee, Bee, and Nee. I'm sure it made my mom very happy as it was her late eldest brother's enstranged family members. We went to Victoria Market (felt like we were at some chinatown fest, Chatuchak beats it flatfaced) together. The morning after, we met up with Shaun(cousin in NZ) and Tze Yin. Had a great great breakfast by the Yarra River....

My take on Melbourne..and the rest of Victoria: Canada-like with a great laidback feel and certainly worth two trips or more. And I'm glad it has none of the city-like experience that I'll rather give a miss.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


Religion can be the boon or the bane of one's life. You choose.

It's only recently that the question of converting has been playing on my mind, as another friend spoke of a similar situation just as she was about to get married. Not that I have anything against Catholics. If anyone must know, I was brought up going to Sunday schools and Catechism classes up till I was 12. Even in university, I went to the Church once in a while. I also went to the temple. Thanks to my parents wisdom I had exposure to both religion, and coming of age, especially now that I'm already in my 30s, I know where my path is, religion wise. Why should anyone doubt my religion when I don't? Who would know what's better for me, if not I? And my choice was never lead or encouraged by anyone. I followed where my heart belonged.

Many people would tell you that in order for the family to achieve full happiness, it is best for the whole family to be of same religion. I ask you, show me the proof. Show me the proof and I will shut my gab forever. But no proof could be produced because this is subjective and every human differ in their behaviour and likes. I've seen many families ruined not by religion, but by lust and greed. How's that for a more common cause of destruction of a family?

I shared with my friend, a Hindu who's also being asked to convert. She is also asked to ensure that her kids would follow the Catholic path and go to church etc etc. She does not want to be a hyprocrite by saying yes to something that's in the future, and for her non-existent kids. I feel the same way. I would want to sample the wisdom of my parents who would provide an environment where my child would have the freedom of choice, and not baptised at birth or forced to a religion that he/she is still too young to understand. There must be a sense of ownership in a religion in order to embrace it. Or else, you are just accepting FATE and not faith.

Here I'm not saying any religion is bad. Buddhism has taught me not to condemn any religion but to respect others. Some of the things I've mentioned are perhaps the result of mis-interpretation of the Bible that has led people to instill the wrong teachings.

All I ask is that if I respect another's religion, I expect the same mutual respect for mine.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Leonardo Da Vinci

I heard about the exhibition from DAN which is starting Oct1st onwards... I was in Florence and the guide was raving about Leonardo Da Vinci. An inventor, painter, artist, engineer (as far as I know), and I just wiki-ed him and found out he's also a musician???? Really???? One of course could not dismiss the famous Mona Lisa and The Last Supper. I went to the Louvre to catch a glimpse of the Mona Lisa...and seriously could not get what the hype was all about...but.... I guess I'm not artistic enough to appreciate it.
I first heard of Leonardo Da Vinci, if i'm not mistaken in one of our history lessons....and then memory revisited with the Ninja Turtles: Leonardo, Raphael, Michaelangelo and Donatello. HAHA.
And so, there's gonna be an exhibition in Pusat Sains Dan, give me the tickets ok!

Saturday, October 03, 2009


I've had it easier than andrew......Everytime when I feel like life or work is tough, I look at Andrew, and he makes me think 'what the hell have you got to complain about?" haha, in a nice way i mean. I grew up with having to worry in the most part of my life, just of myself. I take care of myself, well quite burden-free and worry-free. Looking at andrew I always wonder how the hell he did it. Studies, work, family....unlike me, he has many commitments. And lots of errands to run for himself and his family. I only 'run' for myself.

In a way, i see andrew as a inspiration to go on. When life gets tough, I just need to look at him and think well his life is tougher and yet he takes it with a sleepy smile...(due to exhaustion, he's perpetually lacking of sleep all the time HAHA). His perseverance and patience is commendable. Something I probably don't have. Doing things for others tend to instill selflessness in him. Something probably I would need to learn as well.

And so opportunity does present itself in a strange way. I recently was asked by a friend to volunteer to take some kids out for makan makan. I didnt think I would go. Then i saw this video about kids in Uganda who were starving and suffering from malnutrition. Got me crying like hell. GOsh! Straight away I replied my friend to COUNT ME IN. It made me realize that yeah, I always knew that there are neglected orphans and poor children, but I never really did anything about it. I just know it, ignore it, and move on.

I was talking to that friend just minutes ago, and she's been taking those kids out a couple of times.... She herself lost her mother when she was in her teens and I guess she knew how it felt like having no one to talk to, to share stories with,....She told me once how envious she is of me that I can go home once a week and catchup with my mom. It was a yearning that I guess I could not understand, perhaps not yet.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...