Share bikes and scooters

I went to my usual FX seminar today, but instead of going home and trading like I normally do, I spent the afternoon down at the One Fullerton area overlooking Marina Bay, reading my current trading book. It’s quite a nice area, why don’t we come down here more often?! It’s very pretty and quite serene, with tourists comprising most of the people walking through the area. We rode through here on Tuesday when we cycled around Marina Bay with our friends. We should ride around here more often. And with so many share bikes around these days (and so cheap!), it makes it so much easier to just pick one up along the way and pay the ~S$2 for the few hours.

I walked all the way to the Merlion, and surprised myself when I got this clean shot without any of the tourists who were swarming the area πŸ˜‚

Along with the share bikes, there were also a few tourists with hired scooters, both the traditional scooter as well as the hands free version. Pretty cool. I like how this city has embraced these share bikes and scooters. I guess it’s easier in a small city like SG. Plus riding around in such a safe city makes it all the more pleasant, when you’re not constantly worried that your bag is going to be snatched or someone’s going to be a jerkstick while you’re riding past them.

And because they’ve become so popular, there’s been a few accidents involving them, so these signs have now cropped up recently:

Some hefty fines there. If that’s not a deterrent, then I don’t know what is! But even though there is the odd irresponsible user, most people are courteous. And even pedestrians are courteous, and let the scooters and bicycles go by. So I feel that generally, there is relative harmony on the footpaths 😊

Dancing and flowers

My dad sent me this YouTube clip on rumba walks, which was rather timely because I was going to go find one myself and post the link here, to give you an idea of how weird I must look on the treadmill at the gym! πŸ˜‚ It’s not so bad when I’m the only one on the treadmill, but there are two side by side, so when someone else is using one, then my doing the rumba walks on the other looks rather odd πŸ€ͺ

I came across this small display on Orchard Road, promoting the upcoming Singapore Garden Festival at Gardens by the Bay. I’m very excited, I can’t wait to go! Apparently it’s on once every two years, but I didn’t know about the 2016 one, which is the only prior one we would’ve been here for. So this will be a new festival for me. I should buy my tickets now! 😊

We had a good Ballroom lesson today, working on Slow Fox. It actually felt that little bit better πŸ‘ And Latin practice afterwards didn’t feel too bad either. Maybe there’s hope for us at the comp next week πŸ˜‚

Our teacher asked us if we were doing ten dance at the comp, and we said “Yes – well, six dance”. We only registered for the 3-dance events, but because we do both Ballroom and Latin, it is effectively six dances. So even though we’re “only” doing six dances, that is still one more dance than the specialists do, who only have to do five dances. O-M-G. And there are still four dances to do, two in each style. OK, I shouldn’t be so hard on myself. I forget the number of dances that we have to do compared to the specialists! Sighhh… Is this goal a bit too ambitious??

An actual public holiday

Today was an actual public holiday in SG, unlike the “enforced” one yesterday πŸ˜†

We did a lot of riding today: first, we cycled with our friends to Gardens by the Bay and back, stopping by for coffees, smoothies and milkshakes at Marina Bay Sands; and then lunch at Robertson Quay. I rode my scooter, while the others rode their bikes. I don’t get much opportunity to use my scooter, after I ruled out using it to go to the vet with Kitty, so I’m glad I decided to use it today.

After lunch, we parted ways and N and I did part 2: we rode the North Eastern Riverine Loop! It’s still very pretty, and once again, there were very few people on the trail. I rode the bike this time, to get a bit more of a workout, while N rode on the scooter. The scooter actually lasted all day, which was unbelievable. It only started dying when we were a few hundred metres to the finish line, its battery life is very impressive.

We were so knackered by the end of the day. I took a nap as soon as we got home, and then we finished the day with the third and fourth Jurassic Park movies. I’m all caught up and ready to watch #5! πŸ‘

An β€œenforced” public holiday

Today was going to be errands day. It was a public holiday in both the UK and US, so I knew that trading wasn’t happening today, with the two major financial hubs basically out of action. So rather than watching paint dry, which is what would happen if I sat in front of the markets today, I decided that I’d run errands and basically just do stuff that I wouldn’t normally get the chance to do during the week.

One of the things that I wanted to do was to go buy some health and beauty stuff from Watsons. But as soon as I get there, I realise that I had left my discount voucher at home. I had changed to a smaller handbag, and so I’d left my wallet at home – thereby also leaving the voucher at home. Argh! 😩 So now I have to redo this trip another day πŸ˜”

I also started reading my new book: Atonement by Ian McEwan. He writes really well, very descriptive. I’ve read two chapters so far, and virtually nothing has happened, but I feel like I know so much about the people and their surrounds already. I’ve heard good things about this book, so I’m looking forward to a good read πŸ“– I hope the reviews haven’t talked up this book too much for me, and I end up disappointed!

And in the evening, I went to the gym. And that was pretty much all there was to my day. I actually wanted to do some trading stuff: some backtesting, reading some more of my current trading book, reading a few of my favourite trading blogs etc etc but none of that happened πŸ˜” Oh well. I guess you can’t be productive every day!

Dancing and a few firsts

We had a good Latin lesson today: we did Samba, which feels like it’s improving – until our teacher filmed it for us. Bleurghhh! It definitely feels better than it looks! 😞 I’d rather it the other way around! That is, looking better than it feels. Coz at least it doesn’t hurt the audience’s eyes that way! πŸ˜‚ Oh well. I read this quote on the interweb today: “I am always doing what I cannot do yet, in order to learn how to do it” – Vincent Van Gogh. Pretty much sums up my life!

And then we actually lasted for the whole two-hour Ballroom practice session. Normally we die about 3/4 of the way through, but today I somehow managed to tough it out. Probably because we weren’t running through entire routines, and just focusing on sections of each dance. But it was good. Sometimes you just need to break it down like that, and work on the technique.

We decided to go to Changi City Point afterwards, a mall with a lot of discount outlets, to check out a sale at 2XU. It’s a pretty cool mall! We’ll have to come back another time, when we have a bit more time and energy to walk around. Coz today, after three hours of dancing, we were just ready to go home.

And then we watched The Lost World: Jurassic Park, the second movie in the Jurassic Park series. It’s the first time I’d seen it, and I definitely haven’t missed out on anything all these years πŸ˜‚ It was terribly disappointing, after watching the first one, which I thoroughly enjoyed. Oh well. Two down, two to go. Hopefully we can squeeze the third one in sometime this week. Ooo, Tuesday is a public holiday here, so maybe we can watch it then 😊

So that was a disappointing way to end the weekend, but overall, it was still a good one πŸ‘

A wet Saturday

I decided to wear jeans today. As soon as I walked out of the house, I could feel their heat insulating capabilities πŸ˜‚ Why do I choose to wear jeans in Singapore, you’re probably wondering. I only wear them when I know I’m going to be indoors for long periods of time, because when you’re indoors here, you’re always in aircon. Always. Apart from when you’re at home, you can guarantee that you will be in air conditioned comfort. Shopping mall, restaurant, office, public transport etc etc. It’s only when you’re walking to these places will you be enduring the heat and humidity. And I get cold easily, so I get quite cold when I’m in aircon for long periods of time. Plus a lot of places have the aircon turned up to the nth degree, so my coldness is exacerbated.

So Chinese class; lunch (Bak Kut Teh! Haven’t had that in aaaages); and then a movie this afternoon (we watched Solo – not bad) – all indoors. My jeans were perfect πŸ‘

And it turned out that by the time we were on our way home this afternoon, it started to rain, which washed away some of the humidity, and my jeans actually felt ok to wear on the walk home. Excellent choice in attire today 😊

But because it was all wet, by the time we reached home, we really didn’t feel like going out again. Plus N was feeling quite tired, so we skipped dancing tonight. But after a bit of rest, we still decided to go to the gym πŸ’ͺ I actually didn’t have to fight with myself to go today, I think maybe because I already had it in my mind that we were going to dancing today, and the gym just happened to be the alternative.

And then we spent the rest of the evening watching Jurassic Park 😊 It’s been 25 years since the original was released, omg. A quarter of a century. No wonder I can’t remember it πŸ˜‚ I want to watch the previous Jurassic Park movies before we watch the new one that’s coming out in June. I want to be all up to date, so that I know the back story beforehand. There were a few missing pieces in my knowledge when we went to watch Avengers: Infinity War, so I’d like to be a bit more prepared going into Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. So one movie down, three more to go…

A walk, a book and a paso

I was feeling a bit down today, don’t really know why. I wanted to run a few errands, but never got around to doing them, unfortunately, so they’ll have to wait until next week. In hindsight, I probably should’ve gone out and done them, if just to go for a walk and get some fresh air, it might have helped me feel a bit better. Oh well, I’ll remember that for next time 😊

I finished my next book, Friend Request by Laura Marshall. It’s a mystery novel, a Gone Girl type of book (not that I’ve read or seen that yet, but I know it’s in this same genre). I enjoy reading these types of books, even though they freak me out πŸ˜‚ They keep me on my toes, and I want to keep reading to find out what happens. I’m thinking that perhaps my next book should be of a different genre… Not sure which one yet… I might have to browse my mega long to-read list… 😊

We went and practised tonight, which actually wasn’t too bad. And they played Paso Doble, which got me inspired to revisit that dance. We have a routine and all, we just never practise it, simply because there are so many other dances to do! And because we never dance Paso at comps (much like Viennese Waltz on the Ballroom side, they always leave it out of our events), the other dances then always take precedence. So maybe we can start working on it again after our next comp. At least just to remember the choreography again! πŸ˜†

The working week is now over, thankfully. I’m sure the weekend will bring joy and laughter with it πŸ˜„

A beautiful day

N and I were talking about gratitude last night, and I remembered our discussion again this morning. I mentioned to him last night how I’ve worked hard over the last few years to consciously bring more gratitude and mindfulness in my life, so now it comes much more easily to me. It’s not automatic, and I don’t think it ever will be, but there are definitely a lot more moments in my day now when I am appreciating the moment, and not worrying or complaining or getting frustrated at something or someone.

I think too many of us go about our day complaining about everything that’s not “right” in our lives. Case in point: I do it all the time on this blog! πŸ˜‚ But what we don’t do often enough is just stop and smell the beautiful roses that are right in front of us. Whatever those proverbial roses are in your life, see them for the beauty that they are, and appreciate them and be thankful that you have them in your life.

I read this blog post the other day, and I really liked her technique of stopping and letting herself take in her surroundings through her five senses. I’ve been doing this whenever I remember to, and it’s been such a wonderful experience when I do. I notice just how clear and blue the sky is; just how peaceful and quiet it can be at home; how soft Kitty’s fur is or the rug in our living room; or even the fact that I can actually breathe today. Because it’s not every day that you have a clear nose and can breathe with such ease that you don’t even notice it.

And on the bigger things: I try and appreciate our time here in SG, as we never know when we have to leave this country. Our friends moving back to Oz in the next month or two is a perfect example of how life can just suddenly take you places, whether you want it to or not. So whenever I can, I try and stop and appreciate this city: its unbelievably efficient public transport system; the various food options available – at all hours of the day and at all different price points; how so very clean it is; and how safe I feel in this country.

It’s very easy to just notice all the bad things happening around you and around the world, but there is also so much that is good and right and beautiful. We just have to make the time to notice those things too.

So here is my pause for the day, and I hope you can do the same sometime today too 😌

It was a beautiful sunny day today, and so after my usual FX seminar, I went for a walk around the Marina Bay area, as I figured the iconic attractions around the Bay would look very pretty on such a lovely day. I’m glad I went for this walk, even if it was a brief one- as I still wanted to be back at my desk in time for the European session – because the Bay looked very lovely indeed. Plus a clear day in SG = extra warm β˜€οΈ So I wasn’t keen on being out for too long.

N was catching up with a friend from our uni days, who’s apparently in town tonight, so that meant no dancing. As per my new habit, this meant I was going to the gym. So even though I was still feeling rather tired today, I made my way nonetheless and still put in a bit of an effort. Even though 3 minutes in I was dying on the elliptical, I stuck it out πŸ˜“ I also didn’t lift as much weights as I did last time I was there, but I don’t mind. The point is, I still made it. I could’ve made up any old excuse not to go tonight, but I still made it. I’m sticking with my “consistency” theme for the year, and I am really happy about that!

And I finished off the evening with a Downton Abbey Christmas special. Aaaand yet more people leave. It’s Game of Thrones all over again!

Tired and uneventful

I felt quite tired today, and ended up not doing much at all. We had our usual Ballroom lesson tonight, but I was too tired for Latin practice afterwards, so we just went home…

…via Meidiya, the Japanese supermarket here in SG 😊 It is very hard to resist the beautiful sushi and sashimi that they sell there, so of course we picked some up for dinner tonight 😊 And because it was quite late in the evening, so that they had a higher chance of being sold, the sushi and sashimi were actually discounted, so we got them on sale too. Awesome πŸ‘

And I watched some Downton Abbey while eating dinner. N doesn’t normally watch it, but he was watching with me tonight (while also on his iPad, that is πŸ˜†). There were a few scenes in the episode that we were watching where we both commented on how indirect they were all being, with no one ever getting right to the point and saying what they actually wanted to say! If you didn’t have a good grasp of the English language, you’d be asking wtf were these chaps all talking about?!? 🀣 It’s all very entertaining.

So it was a pretty uneventful, tired, but quiet day 😌

A day off (sorta)

N reminded me about the Singapore Airlines promotion that was in the CBD today, and he only remembered because he walked past their stall on his way to work this morning πŸ˜† They were showcasing their new business and first class seats on their new planes. But more pressing for me was their prize of business class tickets to either Sydney or Osaka! We go to those two cities quite regularly, so I wouldn’t say no to free tickets to either city – and business class ones, at that!

But instead, I won a 4-in-1 travel bag, which is perhaps a more realistic prize. But the staff member who helped me spin the electronic prize wheel said that the travel bag is actually one of the bigger prizes, so that’s pretty cool 😊 They are those packing cells that help you organise your clothes in your suitcase, so you can stack them all and makes your packing that little bit more orderly. So I got four of them, Matryoshka-doll style, with a small Singapore Airlines “New A380” logo in one corner. This was definitely a bigger prize than the Singapore Airlines pen that N won! πŸ˜‚

As we were standing around at the front of the stall chatting, the MC for the day came up to ask us a few questions. Ugh, I so don’t like attention – and especially attention that I am not prepared for! She asked us a few things, whether we travel much etc etc and at the end, she asked a True/False question about Singapore Airlines – I honestly don’t even remember what the question was, I was probably so stressed about all the unwanted attention that she brought onto me! – to which I guessed the answer was true. And I was right! And so won myself a Singapore Airlines lanyard! So at least I was rewarded with a small prize for the unwanted attention πŸ˜‚ It was all so very exciting 😊

I ended up not trading today. Well, I was there, in front of my computer, waiting for a trade, watching the market as it rocketed off without me. Normally if I’m too slow to get in, I wait until the market pulls back, and then I hop on when it starts moving again. But today it never pulled back! It just kept climbing higher and higher, never looking back. I just sat there waiting for it to come back, but it never did. So I ended up not trading. On the bright side, at least I didn’t lose any money today πŸ˜‚

And I have finally updated my decision about going to the gym. It’s probably only been a day or so since I started thinking about it, but it feels like it’s been about a week πŸ˜‚ Tuesday is now officially my day off. N doesn’t have karate on Tuesdays anymore, so we can both have an evening off. Maybe we can go watch a movie, either at home or at the cinemas, on Tuesdays. It can be our date night πŸ’‘ I feel very excited to have made this decision. It feels quite liberating in a way, making a conscious decision not to do anything. It is effectively scheduled free time, and this way, I think I will appreciate it more.

So N watched Deadpool 2 tonight – but not with me πŸ˜‚ He went with one of his mates who was apparently quite keen to watch it. So I watched a few more episodes of Downton Abbey. Omg people leave the show as regularly as they did on Game of Thrones! It’s all quite sad, because you get rather attached to the characters. I’m used to shows like Friends or Seinfeld where the main cast stay for the entire series! But new characters get brought on, and the dynamic shifts, so that brings fresh life into the story. But still! It can all be rather sad!