YouTube

** Warning: Downton Abbey and Game of Thrones spoilers below **

I was going through the recommended list of YouTube clips on my home page, and came across this: the official trailer for the upcoming Downton Abbey movie!! Omg I’m sooo excited! I loved this series, it was really good. And based on the trailer, it seems like the entire cast is back for the movie! Well, the ones who weren’t killed off before the series ended, that is – the number of people who left or died in that series rivalled the number in Game of Thrones πŸ˜‚ I wasn’t expecting that at all when I first started watching the show. I’m used to casts staying on for the entire duration of a series, and maybe the odd person leaving every now and then. So it threw me off when I started watching Downton, and regular cast members just kept dropping off like flies! It keeps you on your toes, that’s for sure πŸ˜‚

YouTube has also been an endless resource for me for my language learning. I’ve been watching a ton of polyglot videos, as I’ve mentioned before, and I also watch YouTube clips on learning Chinese, as well as clips that have been posted by native Chinese speakers for other native speakers. This last category is really tough, as you can imagine, even if it’s just general banter, as native speakers, regardless of the language, always speak fast! But I persevere anyway, hoping that through osmosis, I am still picking up the odd word here and there. I mix it up between stuff for native speakers and stuff that’s been dumbed down for learners of the language, so I am still exposed to the natural speed of native speakers but also not totally discouraged, as I still listen to and learn from the ones that are more tailored to language learners, which also still has English translations. Like I said, Youtube is an endless resource, so I can watch either type whenever I want. Plus a lot of the clips have subtitles as well, so that helps me too, especially since my listening is still really poor. And best of all: it’s free! 😊

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No routine yet

My friend visiting from Sydney texted me saying that her and another friend were walking up The Peak today, and they were meeting up at 10am. I’ve been wanting to walk up too, but the only problem was, I got up at about 11am today πŸ˜‚ So I missed out today πŸ˜” I’ll have to do the walk up another time. Apparently the walk is relatively easy, and takes about half an hour from Conduit Road, the highest point that the mid-level escalators take you. Easy or not, I’d still like to do the walk during the colder season – ie now. I reckon the temperature at the moment is a really nice time to do hikes in this city, so I’d like to do a few over the next few months, especially while we are not quite in a regular daily routine yet, before dancing, karate and Chinese classes eventually become a significant part of our daily lives once again.

Instead, we went and had yum cha with N’s brother at Dim Sum Square in Sheung Wan. This place is really popular: even though we got there at around 3pm, well after what could be considered lunchtime, we still had to queue for about 15min before we got a table. But it was worth the wait, the food was awesome! πŸ‘ And cheap as: we paid HK$224 (S$40) for the three of us! That’s pretty damn good. It’s cash only, but you’re paying so little that this isn’t too much of an issue. At those prices, I could go for lunch every day! πŸ˜‚

We then wandered around Central and Sheung Wan before heading back home and watching a few more episodes of Legion. The lead actor in Legion was also in Downton Abbey!! We totally did not recognise him. He looks completely different in the photos on IMDb from the two shows. He’s a good actor. I really enjoyed watching him on Downton, and now he’s playing this complex character on Legion really well too. I’m only four episodes in, but it’s a good series so far, very bizarre and unlike anything I’ve seen in a long time. Looking forward to finishing season one, which only has eight episodes. So I’m halfway through already 😊

Nothing

We did absolutely nothing today. Absolutely nothing. It was divine πŸ˜† Well, N did clean up and decluttered a few areas around the house, which I always welcome. I’m one of those people who prefers a clean bench top, with virtually nothing on it, bar one or two trinkets or souvenirs or gifts. But we just can’t seem to get to that point, unless we move! πŸ˜‚

And the rest of the time, we took turns watching our respective tv dramas. He was finishing off a chinese drama that he started watching on his last flight, it was called The Exorcist’s Meter. And I finished off Downton Abbey. I think although we were both a little disappointed with the ending of our respective series, overall, we enjoyed them 😊

Free

We had today to ourselves πŸ‘ No Chinese class, no dancing, no comps. It’s always nice to have these days, it feels so freeeee πŸ˜‚

N went to go pick up our F1 tickets from the post office. The Singapore Grand Prix is next month, and we bought these tickets months ago. We were supposed to go with our friends, but after we’d all bought our tickets, our friends’ life plans changed, and soon after buying the tickets, they moved back to Oz, and had to sell their F1 tickets. We’re still going to go, of course, but obviously it won’t be the same without them there πŸ˜”

I read more of that Diabetes Code book, and got up to the section with all the sobering statistics about the disease. It started freaking me out! I don’t want to eat anything now! πŸ˜† I’d like to think we eat relatively healthily already, but we can definitely do better. And the stats are making me want to try even harder on this front.

We went and had lunch in Little India, and then walked around there for a little while, before heading home and just relaxing for the rest of the evening. We went to the gym for a little while, but we didn’t really do much – I didn’t even do my dance basics on the treadmill. But at least we went and did something, even if it wasn’t as much as what we would normally do.

And then I just watched a few episodes of Downton Abbey. I’m up to the sixth and final season, and it feels like the British aristocracy era is on its way out this season. I’m getting a bit sad that I too am getting to the end. I’ve grown quite attached to all the characters. Maybe I’ll return to watching some Chinese dramas, they’ve been good to help me improve my listening skills. Let’s see 😊

Best day I’ve had in ages

I went to take Kitty to the vet this morning. As I was waiting downstairs of our apartment building for my Grab driver, the skies decided to open and spew forth a whole heap of rain. When the driver arrived, I started whinging to him about how I didn’t bring an umbrella with me. So when we got to the vet clinic, he was actually nice enough to give me his umbrella. I felt sooo bad taking the umbrella, as I would’ve survived the 20 metres from the car to the entrance without it, and I knew the chances were slim that I’d need it on the way home, as torrential rain hardly ever lasts for more than 10-15 minutes in SG. But he insisted. When I got home later, I tried ringing the Grab hotline to see if there was a way to give it back to him, but the customer service officer actually spoke to him and he told her to tell me to keep it. Arghhh! So that was a very kind gesture that I received this morning, which I definitely want to pay forward one day.

And while I was on my way to the vet, the designer of my new Ballroom dress sent me his sketch of the proposed dress.

It’s so niiice! I’m so happy with it 😊 It’s simple yet elegant, and will match my Latin dress wonderfully, all of which was what I had requested from him. I’m starting to get excited about it now, after having (mostly) gotten over the shock of having paid so much for the deposit! πŸ˜‚

And then the rest of my “usual” day worked out well too: I had perhaps my only good trading day this entire week; and I also had a good session at the gym later in the evening, lifting heavier weights for the most part and also still getting my dance basics done on the treadmill πŸ‘

I finished off the day with the season five Christmas special of Downton Abbey. It was a good episode, happier than most, but it was Christmas when it was released, so I suppose they didn’t want to make it too depressing πŸ˜†

I couldn’t have asked for a better way to finish the work week 😊

A Sunday all to myself

I decided to finally go get my eyes checked today. I dread going to the optometrist every time (much like the doctor, the dentist, the hairdresser…), but it’s one of those things that I know I just have to do. Luckily she didn’t find anything too worrying. She gave me the usual spiel about not wearing my contacts for too long blah blah. But I’ve been hearing that pretty much ever since I started wearing contacts, so that didn’t concern me too much. But when she didn’t find anything too worrying when she did a general eye health check, then that made me feel a little better. But I think I want to go see an ophthalmologist anyway, I think that I should really get a more thorough eye check, especially since my eyesight is so bad to begin with, which puts me into the higher risk category of getting eye related issues the older I get. So I asked for a referral, and now I’m hoping to book for an appointment sometime this coming week. Fingers crossed the results of the more thorough eye exam is just as comforting as the one today🀞

I then went to buy some cat litter, as we have completely run out. But the store had run out of the 10kg bags, so I had no choice but to buy the next size – at 20kg! So I had to lug this bag home – almost 1km away! I did consider taking a cab back, but I persevered πŸ’ͺπŸ’ͺ I would ordinarily just get the litter delivered, but we’d completely run out, so this time I couldn’t wait even one day to get it delivered, let alone the minimum two day wait for their usual delivery. This is another one of my underbuyer situations where I waited until something completely ran out before I bought some more πŸ˜”

I’m now caught up with Masterchef Australia, so I decided to resume my watching of Downton Abbey. I just finished season four, and now only have two more seasons to go. What am I going to do once I finish the series?! I always feel so “empty” when that happens πŸ˜‚

And I also started reading Men Without Women by Haruki Murakami. I haven’t read a book in a while that’s gotten me hooked right from the beginning, so this one is looking quite promising already. I read one of his earlier books The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, which has to be right up there as one of the weirdest books I have ever read πŸ˜‚ But I like his style, so I thought I’d give this book a go. So far I’m really enjoying it. This one is apparently a collection of short stories, so I’m wondering if each short story is going to be el weirdo acid trips in similar vein to The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle too πŸ˜‚ The first short story that I’m on right now is pretty normal, but I’ll let you know if it turns on me at the end 😊

And movie #3 that I came up with for that FB challenge: Namiya. I watched this on the same flight that I watched Color Me True (movie #2), and I really enjoyed it too. I watched the Chinese version, which was based on the Japanese film The Miracles of the Namiya General Store. I wouldn’t mind watching that film too. It would fall into the science fiction sub-genre that I like, and Color Me True would also probably be classified the same.

Now time to look for movie #4… Argh, it’s getting harder and harder!

Aussie feels

I took Kitty for our biweekly trip to the vet today. I asked them to cut her nails today, so we had to take her out of her carrier in order for the v t nurse to do that. And Kitty was all limp and scared! Poor thing! At least she wasn’t hissing and swiping during the process, so that was definitely a good thing. She just wanted to hide her paws and tuck them underneath her. But she behaved, and all four paws 🐾🐾 were done with minimal stress on the humans πŸ˜‚

So apparently it’s now FY18 tax time in Oz, sighhh… I still haven’t submitted all the papers for FY17, so now I’m two years behind. Greeeat… But it’s just so boh-ring, it’s so hard to find the motivation to get it done. I keep telling myself to collate the papers consistently throughout the year – “consistent” is my one-word theme for the year, if you recall – and it’ll make the process that less painful when tax time rolls around. But of course that didn’t happen πŸ˜” I guess we can work towards a less painful FY19 from now…!

Karate was cancelled at the last minute, and because it was so last minute, there wasn’t really time to head to the dance studio instead. So we decided to just go to the gym for a little while. I did my 800m (twice around the track and field oval) basics again, feeling a bit self conscious because the gym was a full house today. But somehow the music dulls that, and I just carried on with whatever basics I needed to do depending on what music was playing. It was all good πŸ‘

And we finished the evening with another episode of Masterchef Australia, where the challenge was set at the Melbourne Cricket Ground! Awww the Aussie feels 😊 And they mentioned a meat pie during the show and of course I then felt like having a meat pie! πŸ₯§

Poor Downton Abbey needs to take a back seat while Masterchef Australia is on πŸ˜†