Sunday, May 31, 2009

3 nights down...

survived my first set of 3 nights. got 7 days off now. now day 5 of 7.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

my geelong room

thought i'll put up a couple pictures of my geelong room for my mum to see... :p
my buddhist corner... the 2 pictures that i'd bought from vietnam. No one at home had seen it yet bec it was wrapped up in brown paper and i couldn't be bothered to unwrap then re-wrap it at home.
i just had to buy 2. the red one is calming, the silver one is energetic. i couldn't decide, so bought both :p
the statue is from Big W.

my $29 table from officeworks. K and i put it together. now i have a table! (i was sitting on the floor yesterday night)

back in geelong

i've finished browsing the 2009 hospital medical officers handbook. starting medical nights tomorrow. hope that'll turn out ok.

K has been giving me a hand w grocery and furniture purchases. (i still don't have a car)

we went to Black Bull Tapas Bar and Restaurant for lunch on sunday. the tapas were really good... K calls it spanish dim sum...

eggplant fritter in 1 and mussells in the other

mushroom tapas

Thursday, May 21, 2009

"The tea leaf in the vast sea of this world"

this comes from the translated version of "The Pursuit of Happiness and other life observations" by Ven Shi FaZhao:

'In the vast sea of this world, each of us is like a tea leaf, which will fuse into this ever changing vastness in a matter of time. During this process, everyone will have to dedicate their lives completely. A society does not deliberately focus on each individual, just as few would pay attention to every tea leaf while drinking tea.

Having been soaked in clear water, the tea leaves continue releasing their fragrance for the world, not the least bit resigned to the fact that they are unnoticed. Hence we need not be disheartened when we are overlooked due to our blending into the community, as it is through this process that we make others complete, tender help to society, make our contributions and attain fulfillment in life. '

I've always known that we can learn something from tea, i just never knew what it was. so here is one realisation from tea.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Steve Watkins

there were a couple of books in the library: Unforgettable walks to take before you die and Unforgettable journeys to take before you die. These seemed to be aimed at the younger generation of travellers who seek to be inspired by their journeys.

No longer is travel just for entertainment, to see the world, but to look for that something extra, to see the wonders of the world.

His photos on this website are amazing.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Hanoi part 2

we then went to the Ethnological museum. It was quite interesting about the different ethnic groups in Vietnam.

they were showing the different huts, clothings, hunting/ farming equipments, rituals, festivals etc

there is also an outdoor exhibit section with this ??!!

we then went back to the old quarter for more shopping and bought tickets for the water puppet show. that was cool. it was sung in vietnamese but it was so funny! loved it.

we spent the early morning of the last day at the Hoan Kiem Lake, then went to do more souvenir shopping as LY was panicking about souvenirs.

Hoan Kiem Lake


things to see in Hanoi: we were having a cultural tour

Ho Chin Minh Masoleum

one pillar pagoda

HCM museum

Temple of Literature

then we had to try this KOTO organisation. i had watched it on the SBS channel documentary where this Vietnamese Australian went back to Vietnam and set this up to help the street kids. Food was good, ambience was great. try this...

Halong Bay day 2

We took a small ferry to cat ba island. walked around it's small touristy town,

then to this hospital in the cave where ppl hid in when the bombings during the wall happened.
then cycled alittle along the flat. it was meant to be a 14km cycle. but LY didn't want to try, and i was so slow that the guide decided that we had ran out of time ?!

lunch was homecooked in a village and this was our wonderful view during lunch.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

halong bay day 1

this being a UNESCO World heritage site and a must see tourist spot, we just had to go.

got onto the overnight train from Lao Cai --> Hanoi, went to have a shower in the hotel, then went at 8am back to ocean tours to be carted to Halong bay.

it's very touristy, crowded. and it's already NOT a peak tourist season. sighz. can't really imagine jostling with many more people.

had lunch on the junk while gazing at the magnificent stones.

we did about an hour of kayaking, then another boat ride to the ocean resort open only to the ocean tours group people. i thought it was a brilliant idea. really loved being away from all the other tourists.

the resort exclusive

where everyone else was staying, in cat ba island where the lights r in the distance

sapa day 2: cat cat village

there are 54 families here in this village. this is where our local guide lives. we had ended our morning tour and she recommended doing our own self guided trek in her village. it was beautiful. definitely worth a trek.

sapa day2

on day 2 of the sapa leg, sliver waterfall was the first destination of the morning. it was a short steep climb up

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

sapa trail pictures continued

the infamous terraced rice fields

along the trail


we took a sleeper train up to Lao Cai. got picked up by a bus to the hotel.

met our local guide from the Cat cat village and started our light trek.

The scenery was beautiful along the trek. The weather stayed fine

Black Hmong people

vietnam trip

we ended up doing a north vietnam trip... didn't have enough time to do the whole of vietnam.
used ocean tours as our main tour operator, which was pretty good. spoke to Hien there at the hanoi office, who has excellent english and had great recommendations and was perfect as our ocean tours point of contact.
did their sapa light trek 2 days/3 nights, then halong bay ocean style.

Back from Vietnam...

we survived! survived Vietnam, Hanoi's traffic/ roads/ noise/dust, each other (was trying not to piss each other off). will post pictures up next

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Vietnam tomorrow

will be going to Vietnam tomorrow w LY. Been trying to organise tours and hotels from here and trying to accommodate to both our preferences... hopefully the trip would turn out alright for the both of us. :)
will be returning 13th may 09

Monday, May 4, 2009


I've spent 2 rotations in warrnambool hospital already. and i loved the 2 rotations. i'm sure i'll be back there again.

last year, had some time to walk along the beach and explored, armed with a map and my ipod. took a few photos along the way.

this was near the breakwater

i can't remember where exactly i was standing.

Vegetarian food outlets
Found this website under the vegetarian society with details about vegetarian food outlets. You can search according to mrt stations too. i thought this was pretty cool.

Fo guang shan singapore

at punggol now. they've just moved not too long ago. the place is so big. i've only been there once for a chanting session on sunday, then joined everyone for the vego lunch, then had a tour around the place.

the building from outside

mum really loved these stone monks in the garden outside

Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery

One of my favourite temples. I've been there since university when my nusbs seniors brought me there. i go for the talks and classes there sometimes. Also a breathtaking piece of architecture.

Buddha Tooth relic temple

Went there during cny 2009 when we happened to be in chinatown. so didn't have my camera with me. we went to every floor of this temple though. It was GRAND and MAJESTIC. It took my breath away.

The website tells you how to get there. Do wear appropriate attire. if you r wearing shorts or singlets, they would give u towels to cover up.


I think there are a few issues that I can explore here on cyberspace.
1) the temples that i've been to, an activity that CH called 'temple-ing'.
2) Vegetarian foods, recipes
3) being a singaporean overseas
4) and just to update my friends and family about my life.

Musings of a Mule

Once there was a mule, plodding along in the fields, peering into the ground ahead of it. With hooves sinking into the muddy soil, sweat beads gliding down its back, it gave a shrug and a snort. It mused and mulled about the state of things, about what came to be its life. Without annoyance or regret or frustration, just a forlorn reflection.

I've decided that my blog is pretty uninteresting. the purpose of that blog was to keep ppl overseas informed about me in general. i had slowly lost interest in blogging and was only updating once in a few months. So... i thought i might revitalise my blog! hopefully, it won't fall into the same traps of inactivity and non-excitement.


It's a word used to describe the activity of going to temples for the purpose of visit, seeking information, seeking inspiration and wisdom.
*ps: feel free to suggest more into this definition