everyday.closeness

Piglet sidled up to Pooh from behind. 

“Pooh?” he whispered. 

“Yes, Piglet?” 

“Nothing,” said Piglet, taking Pooh’s hand. 

“I just wanted to be sure of you.”

from Jamie Beck's blog : From Me To You

Going home soon for a night of home-cooked food, I’m always looking forward to a night in with my bushyhead, even if the food is overcooked/burnt/bland.

Have a lovely weekend, everyone!
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{ Replies to previous post }

Sewon Exactly! Without the ups and downs, it’s just a boring straight line! 🙂

Shannon Eileen Those doggies will melt anyone’s heart, I suppose! I miss them!

jacqueline aw.. thank you for your sweet comment, Jacqueline!

Colleen / Inspired to Share Oh I hope you get a chance to visit soon! I’m sure you will love it!

Sarah I think all aerial pictures are nice! They are kinda magical, aren’t they? To imagine all the people living in the lands below, and all the wonderful and unexpected lines and designs that are on them, which we would normally never have seen them on ground.

nuelene Agree! Thanks for dropping in!

Georgianna I hope I can it there someday! So where do the bus tours start from? Is there any public buses instead? I’d rather try traveling on my own than follow a tour group! (That’s the thing about being a non-driver, I want to go everywhere, but I don’t drive!)

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honeymoon day 16, our big fat greek honeymoon starts here

Hello again!!!

Onboard Aegean Air to Athens!

look at all that excess luggage I'm lugging out of Italy. My bank account has since been in poor health.

ALL that baggage, not even including bushyhead's (who's a much bigger shopper than I was) yet, we heaved all of them onto the bus that took us into Athens city and stood awkwardy with bags on our shoulders, between our legs, on our tummies, most way of the entire journey. ekkk!

the bus at our destination - Syntagma Square

checking in at Magna Grecia Boutique Hotel

the overwhelmingly blue corridor outside our room

Many hotels will offer view of the Acropolis because of its strategic location where it was meant to be seen by the everyone in the city. And because of that, I specifically wanted one that offer me a view like this. It'd be so silly to check in and find one of those hotels which doesn't have a view of the Acropolis at all!

i will agree that this room, however, is too pink and girly.

dirty laundry. - airing the clothes that simply won't dry in Rome on our balcony.

seizing the day, and enjoying the longer daylight hours that Greece was offering us as opposed to what we experienced previously

stacks of giant donuts at ermou street

the Greeks at their favourite game of Backgammon

ouzo - I told myself that I had to try this while I'm there

it's funny sometimes that when i'm overseas, everything looks good and a novelty to me. I don't eat coconut products, but cut coconut in a mini fountain? "looks yum!" sweetened coconut snack with desiccated coconut? "Must try!" what's wrong with me?

ending the day with friends by the fire

and i got my bushyhead with me. it was a great day!

we dropped by the famous sandal-maker/post/artist in Athens.We chit-chatted and he recommended us to this little tavern for a good homemade greek meal.

he said, look out for the drunkard with big red nose.

And we got to see why the locals liked it here. It’s like having a meal at home with your friends, the host tell you what they have in their kitchen that day and you sit down for your meal with a jug of cheap wine and spend the evening listening to gossips and maybe a game of Backgammon.

the other drinking holes in the area

we ended the day with a glass of sweet sangria and people-watched at an outfoor cafe in Ermou street

links to the earlier parts of our honeymoon:

day 1 & 2 (Frankfurt), day 3 (Frankfurt & Switzerland), day 4 (Switzerland), day 5 (Switzerland), day 6 (Milan), day 7 (Padua & Venice), day 8 (Venice), day 9 (Venice & Florence), day 10 (Florence), day 11 & 12 (Florence), day 13 (Rome), day 14 (Rome), day 15 (Rome)

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{ Replies to previous post }

theEclecticLife Singapore is just really getting interesting, the way that it should be all along!

HiLLjO Oh yes! This is definitely one place that I will try to get if we ever have another Staycation!

Sarah Hey Sarah! Let me know if you do get a chance to stay there!!

Maddy lol.. I think if we were to stay in that white room, I would so desperately be trying to hide our stuff under the bed, in the closet, anywhere! just so it stays aesthetically chic!

vanessa Try Naumi Hotel too! I think they even have a ladies floor there!

CinZilicious haha.. that typewriter is a surprise!

evie *wink*

honeymoon day 14, walking at the end of all roads

day 14.

First item on the agenda of the day, a visit to Piazza Mazzini Antique Market.

brand new shoes on the ancient Roman pavement

I don't understand how the glare from the sun can be conducive to reading... but it makes a lovely morning!

searching for breakfast made us tired and we ended up having an early lunch in the subway station.

Colosseum

seems like most times, the missing part of the massive Colosseum is as integral to what remains. Does anyone picture the Colosseum as a whole, ever? Guess that's what makes us appreciate things like this more huh!

ow-ow found a quiet spot

tightrope-sky walker

i want a rooftop tower too.

someone should make a wall-book out of these posters.

this is, a roman holiday.

Area Archeologica del Teatro di Marcello

outside a popular restaurant in the Jewish Ghetto

to Isola Tiberina

window at the lovely Trastevere neighbourhood. I highly recommend everybody who comes to rRome to give this place a visit. It is absolutely authentically charming!

b.e.s.t. restaurant in Rome! I also want so much to tell you what I think of the waiter with the orange tie, but i'll be nice... bummer.

nobody should miss this.

an open kitchen. real people. real wood oven. real pizza. Remember in my previous post where i mentioned how you can spot a good italian restaurant?

italian beer

yummy...

this was a "ok,let's-find-somewhere-for-a-drink-but-hey-the-food-looks-good!" stop. So we only ordered a pizza to share, but everything turns out so good that we regretted not having a proper meal there and later on, not being able to come back again for a 2nd round.

bushyhead's favourite italian dessert

Piazza Santa Maria


when i was there, there was this little street that has strings of laundry hanging overhead between houses. and i found it kind of weird that tourists were taking pictures of hanging undergarments, among other clothing. Sure, it was quite charming to see everyday stuff like that in italian streets where steps away people are sipping their expresso, but taking photographs of the natives' undergarment?? Later I found out that scene was one of the most photographed washing in the world, at least from one of the more popular guidebooks around!

Piazza Navona

a lot going on here!

was too bad we didn't understand the language made the whole square laughed so hard.

I probably shouldn't make fun of masterpieces that are admired by hundreds everyday... but doesn't the cherub looks like he's punching that poor horse?

we simply have to sit out, have a coffee and people-watch at the square. plus, i really have to pee then.

Pantheon

the oculus. though they say the rainwater will evaporate through it, gentle sloping of the floor at the Pantheon was designed to drain the rainwater away.

supposedly the best cofee in the world - not opened to us in winter.

Trajan's Column. I find this pretty fascinating. Built in 113 CE as a monument for Emperor Trajan and wife's tomb, it is 30 metres high and carved with reliefs containing 2500 figures that tell so much stories that I think one has to look at it for years to fully grasp the amount of information and history on it. And they are all still intact after what seems like forever ago!

arriving at Trevi Fountain after a brief shopping detour

a spray-can artist. He is sooo amazing!

dinner after a long day's walk. and it was quite horrible.

even when we chose what we always thought would be the fail-safe dish.. seafood pasta. I was so angry with myself that I was spending another meal having bad food in italy! at least mid-day impromptu lunch was good...

one of the waiter at the restaurant gave me a rose before we left. ah well, the service was really not too bad, but i don't think i can forgive that bad tourist food!

* See comment for reason why we were at bad-food restaurant.

day 1 & 2 (Frankfurt), day 3 (Frankfurt & Switzerland), day 4 (Switzerland), day 5 (Switzerland), day 6 (Milan), day 7 (Padua & Venice), day 8 (Venice), day 9 (Venice & Florence), day 10 (Florence), day 11 & 12 (Florence), day 13 (Rome)

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day 11 & 12, what’s too much shopping and gelato?

day 1 & 2 (Frankfurt), day 3 (Frankfurt & Switzerland), day 4 (Switzerland), day 5 (Switzerland), day 6 (Milan), day 7 (Padua & Venice), day 8 (Venice), day 9 (Venice & Florence), day 10 (Florence)

day 11.

One of the things we looked forward to in Florence is shopping!

And I hope that will explain the lack of pictures on this day!

we reached the outlet too early and waited in the cold for more than hour.

 

jump! jump! jump!

and jump again! brrr...

return bus schedule for The Mall

sunset on our shop-a-lot day

dinner in florence

day 12!

 

ow-ow loves the wall patern in the train cabin

daytrip!

i had been craving for a gelato for sooo long, it excited me too much to find a Gelateria that's open for winter. can you tell i'm salivating?

sweet bliss....

can u tell where we were? it's pretty obvious!

The Baptistery of Pisa has the perfect acoustics. Prior to arriving, a friend in Switzerland told us that if we stood under the dome in the center of the hall, sounding a low sound, the whole place will echo with it. When we were there, somebody demonstrated that for us by singing. It was AMAZING.

 

left: the singer who filled the whole room with his voice. right: the top of the dome (interior)

anti-slip!

details on the cathedral door - a gigantic picturebook

everybody who comes to pisa has to take some funny pictures with the leaning tower one way or another, and then folks at home will have to interpret the picture. try this.

To that little guy, I’m sorry for your candid implication.  I could’d photoshopped you away, but what’s the point of that!

i love these colorful markets

and i love what she was wearing. doesn't this look like a film set?

train-ing back to florence

outside a restaurant

our room window

what was OUTSIDE our room window - the yoghurt and tangerine that I was trying to chill

Mercato Nuovo market

of all the ice cream cones there is, we had to pick the world's most expensive gelato cones.. really, where did my brain go? By the way, that was my 2nd gelato of the day!

Piazza dei Ciompi antique market

We went for a loooong afternoon walk in Florence, bushyhead got more shirts, we saw David at The Accademia and even sneaked a photo of him, who can resist the world’s most perfect man? Then we met up the new friends we met at the wine tour and had the most expensive meal ever for the whole of our honeymoon.

Known to be one of the best restaurants in Florence, Cibrèo restaurant impresses us with their personable service, hands down to that! For every course, we got a server sitting down with us and talked us through the extensive menu, right down to the finest detail. There has got to be more than 10 items just on the main courses alone! All we can say is that, we got more than we bargained for, even with that steep pricetag. There were so many complimentary dishes that I don’t even remember what is what now. Most of what you will see below, complimentary! I was touched.

I apologize for not being able to post on a regular basis. Recently I just got a new job and I’m still adjusting to the hours. Like ow-ow, I’m a night-owl, though I’m determined to get this out at least twice a week.

Next, guess our next destination!

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honeymoon day 1 & 2, i got my craving fix

3rd Jan 2011,

We departed sunny Singapore, hopped on a 12-hour flight and begun our much-awaited honeymoon.

note his expression. he knew he's going to be in for some kind of hell soon - free from work and possibly internet conection, foreign food and beyond-tired legs

 

checking for signal was one of the first thing he does once we got off the plane and stated waiting for the train to take us to Frankfurt am Main.

ow-ow's first appearance

light and tickling : his first snow

hardly Zephyros. it didn't snow when we touched down, it didn't snow when we were taking the train but the moment we stepped out of the subway station, Frankfurt gave bb what I wanted him to have for this honeymoon: a chance of snow.

huddling birds on leaf-less trees after a long winter flight. in the morning, they will be gone and who knows where they rested their aching wings the next night

We spent the next 2 nights at the Steigenberger Frankfurter Hof. Long history behind this one, they opened in 1876 as “Frankfurter Hof”, it was the first place to own the first public phone in Frankfurt 1891 and a year later, the first electric lightning. Having survived through the first world war and never been occupied during the WW2 by the Nazi Regime, the hotel was burnt down after a series of bomb attacks. Only the facade was saved and it’s the same facade that we see today.

i love all those little (well, little from afar) Christmas trees between the archways.

the hotel, then. Imagine the grandeur that the interior was

the room, however, contains none of the grandeur we saw on the facade, nonetheless, it was nothing to complain about... except... I was expecting the bed to be a little plushier though..

After a successful late-night scour for food outside, we headed back to the hotel to do some quick exploring through its endless corridors.

 

" swipe id if you want your ciggies! "

lights out!

Day 2.

 

frankfurt (kaiser straße) in the morning... the sun just never seemed to officially start work until noon-time

morning-faced

Brasserie ici at Marriot Frankfurt was one of the breakfast experiences that i missed so much! This is just one small section that they have. The variety was incredible, though I felt with every passing years, they cut down on the variety, and this time round when i was there, my much-look-forward-to sliced beef steak was taken off! woe to me.

but the pancakes cheered me up a little

and this, more

bb had a long-distance phone relationship with a girl at the phone service-provider most parts of the morning

i had to entertain myself with my freakish eye

on familiar grounds

leipzeiger straße

yummy bath bubbles

tools of the trade

this was the stuff that carried me through many lonely dinners in the room, me sitting cross-legged in a couch with my eyes either mindlessly watching german MTV or some english dramas I'd brought from home. Nonetheless, it was always enjoyable and a luxury I looked forward to.

taken from bb's pov: his stomach just couldn't compare with mine, he only had a soup

tiramisu after a meal like that? oh yes!

both droolers

a maggi store. seasoned chicken noodle soup with more seasoning. eek! just what we needed for the cold outside.

at Römerberg plaza. all the pretty neogothic buildings you see behind us were all destroyed in WW2 and rebuilt after. lovely place for a meal, if you have spare to spend!

 

coffee at my favourite joint in the gloves my buddy personalised for me for christmas

toasty idea! sit al fresco and watch the world go by with your best friends tucked snuggly under these wool blankies

i'm still in awe at this mall's architecture a year plus after its completion

the cold and probably the time difference got the better of bb and we headed back to the hotel where i watched him sleep like a baby for the next 2 hours. i think my heart was still wandering out there

but being the good sport and a thoughtful husband, he woke up to go the other pizzaria that i must go to meet Jan with me. this look was a mishap after i , the absent-minded wife, hopped on the wrong tram and inadvertably caused the 20 minute wait in the cold dark night at an unsheltered tram station.

the taste of familarity that i missed soo much!

yummy, downed with generous portion of wine

if you had spotted our free model in the background of the 2 above pictures, you'd understand why we had to take a photo with this character

thanks jan for coming out to meet us when you too were under the weather!

More to come! We travel to Switzerland next! Touching hospitality and cats galore, but before that, which will be coming in the next post, I have to share this picture taken on our way back to the hotel.

this one is a classic look that even I won't get to see often. it's his "i'm cold and i'm tired and i have a loud hiccup" look

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a dream of a parisian bistro wedding

A while ago, I found a little piece of Paris along Scotts Road, a gem of a storefront tucked exactly where it would be if it were in Paris. I’ve imagined maître d’ with a funny mustache rolling words off the french menu, fresh loaves in a picnic basket and legs of ham hanging in the kitchen. Subconsciously, this mellow chateau-building in the air happened in the passenger seat of Stefan’s car.

Bistro du Vin

As I would discover months… months later, there is ALL that at Bistro Du Vin! ‘cept for the head waiter with the twitchy facial hair, whom I am truly disappointed NOT seeing. No complaints about the waiting staff though!

The mosaic floor tiles, framed whimsical pictures of vigorous bartender and eager waiters and country chickens all adds up to the authentic look-and-feel of the bistro. To include a touch of greenery that grey Paris so lack, there is even an odd-sized potted plant on the dining room floor. Prior to all these observations, the menu chalkboards featuring Today’s Specials already won me over.

To start with, we had pan-fried foie gras with caramelized apples and walnuts. Stefan said he found his next-favourite haunt for foie gras after his 2nd mouthful.

I’m really sorry for the poor goose’s suffering but I was happy with the freaked delicacy in my mouth. I shall not attempt to defend my culinary choices further.

Next up, oven-roasted chicken parcels with mashed potato and garlic pork pate for me and char-grilled Aussie Angus ribeye in garlic-herb butter and french fries.

Verdict? See this:

I’m not crazy about the pork pate though, but this, this soft fluffy-i-could-DIE mashed potato, I suspect, is a piece of heaven.

In between main course and 15min-to-prepare dessert, chocolate molten cake with vanilla ice cream, Stefan enjoyed a welcoming cup of after-meal coffee and I’m happy sipping my wine and taking crappy pictures such as these with my mobile phone.

Here’s a ‘what-if’ moment.

What if, we were not holding our wedding at our current venue?

I would hold my intimate cosy wedding here.

Here’s a ‘back-to-reality’ moment.

Spending a pre-movie Wednesday evening with my best friend in an imaginary visual and sensory trip to Paris – Superb!