Dance practice

We didn’t do much at all today. We did some dance practice in the evening, but that was pretty much it! I wanted to do some more Chinese as well, but I didn’t get around to doing much of that either. I was really tired today, as if the lack of sleep during the week finally caught up with me. I ended up taking a 2-hour nap in the afternoon ðŸ˜ī

Dance practice was good – well, not the dancing per se 😂 But we achieved quite a fair bit in the two-hour session 👍 We need to do more of that, in order to get back into it. But we did say that we were going to take the year off from dancing competitively, so given this, I guess the amount that we are doing isn’t too bad… Plus I’m still doing some of my own stuff at the gym as well, so it’s not like we’ve taken a complete hiatus 😉 And coupled with the fact that I was just generally tired today, I was happy with what we did manage to get through 👍

Successful and unsuccessful practice sessions

We went and did some dance practice today. We booked the dance room for two hours, and only did three dances: one hour on waltz, and half an hour each on rumba and cha cha. I remember our old ballroom teacher telling us that she used to train for four hours each day. That’s how you become Chinese champion, I suppose! So we are barely scratching the surface 😔 But we do this for fun, not to become world champions or anything, and we’re currently not competing, so at least we’re keeping up with some training…!

While we were practising, I got a text message – from the HK police! ðŸ‘Ū‍♀ïļ It’s rather stressful getting a random text message from the police! It was in Chinese, but since I was so stressed that I just got a text from the police, I just copied and pasted directly into Google Translate, rather than trying to read the message myself 😆 It was just a public service announcement letting everyone know that there’s another march today, and to make sure to receive updates from social media about it. I thought that was a really nice thing to do, despite the initial stress of seeing “HK police” show up on my phone! 😆

N decided to still go to karate tonight, despite this rally that’s going on. But as soon as he got to the venue, they cancelled the practice session! Apparently the venue had decided to close for the rest of the evening, we assume because of the rally. So he had no choice but to just head back home 😔 I guess I should be grateful that these minor inconveniences is the extent to which we are impacted by these protests. I just don’t want them to escalate into something worse – and I don’t want to find out what “worse” could be 😔

Noise and music

It was very noisy in the apartment today: the guys downstairs are renovating, so I could hear drilling and hammering for most of the day; the guys next door moved out yesterday, but it seemed like they came back today to clean up whatever crap they still had in their apartment; and then fire alarm testing for the entire building was happening pretty much all day today as well 😒 But surprisingly, I still had a very productive day! I must have an aversion to silence 😆

And we headed down to the gym again tonight, for the third day in a row. I’m proud of that effort 👏 I brought my earphones with me today, after suffering without them yesterday. I didn’t do any dance practice yesterday as a result, since I like to dance to – surprise surprise – music! ðŸŽķ So I allocated a bit more time to dancing today to make up for the lack of music yesterday.

So it ended up being a more productive Monday than I expected it to be! 👍

Happy to be the weirdo

I had a good productive evening. My sesh at the gym was really good. I did a few basics on the treadmill, as per usual. I had one guy on the treadmill next to mine as I was doing Ballroom basics, and then a new guy replaced him when I switched over to Latin 😂 I still wonder what people think when they see me do these basics on the treadmill. Afterwards I do actually dance a bit in the small space available near the equipment, so hopefully people put two and two together! Not that it matters, I’m happy to be the weirdo at the gym ðŸĪŠ

And then when N came home from karate, for some reason he had decided to only speak Chinese for the rest of the evening. Sometimes I think to do this, but it is so much effort that once I say a sentence, I then revert to English pretty much straight after that. But for whatever reason, he persevered tonight, and so we had a good – and very challenging – practice session! 👍 We probably said a bajillion things incorrectly, but that’s ok, it’s all about getting the message across to the other person, and I understood him most of the time, which is the whole point of language. Native speakers and teachers can correct us as we go along this language journey, but we have to make the mistakes first in order to be corrected. Ah, it’s all part of the fun 😊

Our two sports

We went to the second day of the karate comp today, but just to the morning session. They had the official ceremony this morning, which was odd, as I would’ve thought they’d have it at the beginning of day 1?? Perhaps one of the officials wasn’t available to attend yesterday or something, and so they moved it to today.

We went and had lunch with a few of N’s mates from karate, and then after that, we just went home and took a nap before our first proper dance training session since we moved to HK ðŸ˜ą It wasn’t a complete disaster, we didn’t forget everything 😂 N remembered more of the Ballroom choreography while I remembered more of the Latin, which doesn’t come as a surprise since he prefers Ballroom and I prefer Latin 😆 It was good to get back into it, nonetheless. Plus the room booking fee is way cheaper here than in SG, and for a much larger room: we’re basically paying the same amount here as in SG, but in HK dollars (S$1 is about HK$6 – so wayyy cheaper!). Something that is actually cheaper, for once! And the room was a decent enough size that we could somewhat practise our Ballroom, something which we struggled to find in SG. This too is quite surprising, given the lack of space in this city.

Good size room, good enough even for Ballroom 👍

Afterwards, we then just went to Shake Shack – not quite the best choice in food after a training session! 😂 But it was nice, my first time eating at a Shake Shack in HK 👍


We had our third calligraphy lesson today. N did better than me today: his characters were looking much more balanced than mine, and he seemed to be at one with his brush today 🖌 I, on the other hand, seemed to have lost my relationship with my brush 😂 Hopefully I didn’t peak too early, and I can get my mojo back next week…!

And then in the evening, we went to our first Latin practice session in what feels like months. It was actually pretty good, much better than I expected it to be 👍 Nothing fell apart too badly; we remembered all our routines; and I wasn’t as unfit as I thought I’d be, given how long it’s been since we had a good Latin practice session. So maybe we can survive the comp after all 😊 At least on the Latin side. Ballroom could be an entirely different story…! ðŸ˜ģ

And we finished the evening continuing our search for this elusive HK apartment… Sighhh… I just want to hear from the Property Agent that apartment #1 is off the table, so I can then mourn the loss and move on and continue to be mega disappointed with the lack of semi-decent properties available in HK 😂

A bit overwhelming

We had our first Latin lesson this morning, our first one in what felt like over a month, although it’s probably only been two weeks. It was a bit of a struggle to get to the studio by 10am, I just couldn’t get up this morning. So I had to skip breakfast in order to get there on time.

Despite the lack of food, the lesson was actually ok. We focussed mainly on Rumba, always a good dance to start with, and we finished with some Samba. A few things fell apart, but once we got into the lesson, muscle memory kicked in, and it was all ok. Our teacher didn’t even mind our Samba, which was total amazeballs 😂

We went home after grabbing some lunch near the studio, and we both fell asleep because we were so tired from the early morning start 😂 So much so that we missed Ballroom practice this afternoon, which is a bit of a shame, as we are so out of practice at the moment. Our last comp for the year is just over one month away, and it will also probably be our last comp in SG, so it’d be good if we can actually put in a good attempt for this comp. But with everything going on with this HK move, I’m not sure if we’ll get much time to practise for it during this coming month! 😔

I think we are both a bit overwhelmed at the moment with this move. I’m sure it’ll be more exciting once we’ve settled in, but at the moment, getting everything organised to actually move is just stressing us both out, on top of the usual day-to-day stuff that we do. Argh! We just need to focus on getting everything sorted over the next few months: make a checklist, do some serious decluttering, and start ticking off everything on that checklist. We just need to be methodical about it and not let the sheer length of the checklist stress us out.

Derailed plans

I was having a conversation by text (in Chinese) with our Chinese teacher yesterday, trying to arrange the start of our next lesson, which was supposed to be today. He said that he was going to send through an email to organise payment, and we left it at that.

So this morning, we got ready to go to Chinese class, even though we hadn’t yet paid for it as I hadn’t yet received his email. So as we were walking to class, ten minutes before it started, I texted our teacher asking if class was starting today, as I hadn’t yet received his email. Apparently I had misunderstood everything: there was no class today, and we’re starting back up in two weeks’ time. Argh! I should’ve just had the conversation in English and not be practising my Chinese 😂

Anyhow, so that meant that we now had the morning to ourselves. We started wandering around a nearby mall, but that soon got boring, so we sat down somewhere and tried to figure out what to do with the rest of our suddenly empty morning. N then came up with the idea of watching Crazy Rich Asians. I checked to see when the next available screening was, and to see if there were any decent seats left. The first screening for the day at the closest cinema was at 10:45am – and the cinema was not even half full! So we got a very decent seat 👏

I actually enjoyed the movie much more than I expected to. If I had done that FB challenge after having seen this movie, then this one might have made my top ten. Comedy, drama and romance all featured. It was light and whimsical, and I really liked the soundtrack. They filmed most of the movie in SG, so I spent pretty much the entire movie trying to place where they filmed any given scene 😂 Overall it was a good, light-hearted movie, and followed the main plot of the book quite well. I think there will be movie #2 and #3 eventually, in line with the books as well, so that’s something to look forward to in the coming years.

And then we had our first Latin lesson later in the afternoon, our first lesson in weeeks, followed by Latin practice afterwards. We worked on Paso Doble in our lesson, so that routine isn’t quite in our memories yet; but the other four Latin dances didn’t fall apart too badly when we were practising afterwards. I was pleasantly surprised, given how long it’s been since we’d stepped onto a dance floor. So we’re inching ever closer to our five dances for Latin, and ten dances overall… Very exciting!

We finished practising quite late, so I suggested that we eat at one of the local hawker centres, as I was getting awfully close to the end of my 12-hour eating window, and I would definitely be well into my 12-hour fasting window if we went home and made dinner instead. Eating at the local gawker centre wasn’t going to be as healthy as cooking something ourselves at home, but my primary goal at the moment is to try to stick to this 12:12 plan (12-hour fasting / 12-hour eating windows), so that took precedence. I finished eating and drinking 10 minutes after my eating window had closed, which isn’t too bad 😊 I don’t have any plans tomorrow, so nothing should derail 12:12… Fingers crossed! ðŸĪž

Nubbin and dancing

I lost the nubbin in my/our Nespresso machine frother, so I couldn’t froth the milk for my coffee this morning. Such a first world problem 😂 I seriously don’t know where it went! I looked all over in the kitchen (which is as tiny as you can get with kitchens) and the surrounds, in case it’s flown out somehow. But it just wasn’t anywhere. So I had to ring up Nespresso to order a new nubbin. Surprisingly, I managed to make the afternoon delivery today, so my new nubbin was coming during the 3-6pm window! This same-day delivery was very impressive. When does that ever happen?! ðŸ˜ē

I told N about how I lost my nubbin and that the new one was coming this afternoon. He said jokingly “you’ll find it at 2:30pm” 😂

So in the afternoon, I was back in the kitchen to make my lunch, and went to go get the strainer. And guess what was stuck on the strainer? The little nubbin! Its magnetic properties were strong enough for it to cling to the strainer. Arghhh! Precisely as N predicted, omg 😂 So now we have a spare nubbin!

And then in the evening, we had our usual Ballroom lesson, our first one in a few weeks now. It was a really good lesson, actually, and a timely one at that, as our teacher gave us A LOT of things to work on. N is going to be in HK again for work for the next few weeks, so we won’t be having a lesson for another few weeks again. This way, while he’s overseas, we can at least practise the things that we covered in the lesson today.

And then Latin practice was after Ballroom. Man, it feels like it’s been aaages since we’ve had a normal dancing Wednesday. It was a productive evening 👍

Dance comp, Oz style

We were aiming to get to bed by around 8pm last night, so that we were sure to be ready by 9pm. We managed 9:30pm 😂 But then a bunch of young’uns had just checked in to the service apartment next door, and of course they were being their usual rambunctious selves, as most youths are, so they kept me up for longer than I had wanted to be. I did eventually fall asleep, albeit later than I had hoped, and managed to get myself out of bed by around 6:15am. Not too bad, not too bad.

We got to the comp venue right on 8am, and the doors pretty much opened as soon as we got there. What perfect timing. The ballroom was quite grand and picturesque, it wouldn’t look out of place in a Downtown Abbey episode 😊 Ballroom was in the morning, and Latin was in the afternoon. As ten dance dancers, we appreciate that sort of organisation! There is no change of costume: you stay in one in the morning, and then you change to the other in the afternoon. No running around like a headless chicken scrambling to go from one costume to another and back again 👍

This ballroom would not look out of place in a Downton Abbey episode 😊 

We had a few hours to kill in between our Ballroom and Latin events, so we went back to our apartment to drop off our Ballroom gear (I deliberately chose this Airbnb for its proximity to the comp venue 😊), took a bit of a nap ðŸ˜ī before grabbing some brunch, just in time for Latin.

At brunch, just after we were seated, one of the wait staff turned to us and asked if we were dancers. She seemed so in awe of it all. Maybe I’m just too immersed in it that it doesn’t feel glamorous or exciting in any way at all! For example: I had to get up at 6am this morning just to put on all this ridiculous make-up, as well as half a container of gel and hairspray to hold my hair in place 😂

And then when we got back, apparently we missed the prize presentation for our event, because we didn’t realise that they were spacing out the presentations throughout the day. We ran into some friends when we got back and they told us that they made a big hoo-ha about it: “All the way from Singapore…” blah blah – and all the while, we were lounging around resting in the apartment or having brunch down at Centre Place! Wahhh! ðŸ˜Ŧ So we won our events, but there wasn’t much competition, I don’t know where all the older competitors were today. Nonetheless, a win is a win 😝

And then after the comp, we went and had dinner with some of the guys from the dance studio who also came to Oz for this comp. They wanted to go for some pub food (and I never say no to pub food, since pubs are virtually non existent in SG), so we decided to go down to Hopscotch for a more upmarket experience down by the Yarra and celebrate the end of yet another competition 🎉🍷ðŸŧ

It was a long day with not much dancing (nor competition!), so now we can just relax and do whatever tomorrow 😌