Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Rich List.

Just a little update on my London life.

I'm currently working on a campaign called 'This Foreigner Can'. It has been quite an interesting project so far but of course as with all new projects there are bumps on the road. While most people are quite receptive to the concept of the campaign, it is the funding that is proving to be the biggest road block to success.

Anyways, what I wanted to blog about is about my thoughts on the Sunday Times Rich List. Every year, the Sunday Times releases a list of the 1,000 richest people in the UK. I had to go through the list to find the richest migrants who made the list and after going through 1,000 names I think I have detected the trends for getting rich.

Some of the common trends are:

1. Come from a rich family: Many of those on the list may be really great CEO's and leaders of their companies, but they have just taken over their family business which has been established for quite some time.

2. Work in an investment bank: While you may not make the top 200, there are quite a number of investment bankers who are rich by power of their salary/bonus alone. On the other hand, there are a few ex-hedge fund managers who then came out to start their own businesses.

3. There are so few women: Sad to say that many women to did make the list are listed jointly with their husbands.

4. Divorce/Inheritance: There are so many individuals who are worth hundreds of millions just because they got a divorce who a really good inheritance. WHATTTT. I've also observed that unfortunately women who do come into a windfall decide then to be a socialite whereas quite a number of the men go on to use that money to start a business (it may not be a very profitable business, but it's something).

5. Politics: Pretty much all the mega rich are Tory supporters who donate millions. I think there were only two significant Labour donors on the list. There is also the odd Liberal Democrat.

6. Live in another country: If you are super rich, you will be a resident in Switzerland, Monaco or Gibraltar. All the tax havens.

7. Property: Just buy property.

Okay that's all I really wanted to note down. 

Monday, April 06, 2015

health kick.

It's weird how I'm actually in my mid-twenties now. Turning 24 this year just sounds so surreal.

At times I do feel like age is catching up to me. Like how I really can't do long nights out anymore. Well I can, but not as often. From going out a few nights every week in uni and still making it to class despite only having gone to bed at 4am is something that is unthinkable now. Now it would be more preferable for me to go out one night a month because I need like a week to recover. Not only from the drinking but from the amount of effort of dressing up and wearing heels all night long.

However, I can safely say that at this point in time, I am healthier and fitter than I have ever been before in my life.

Anyone who knows me will know that I abhor exercising. While everyone back in school was busy doing team sports or running about I was quite content to sit in class and do absolutely no physical activity. It's the fast pace and all the sweating I can't stand. But having discovered yoga and pole I am much more motivated to do some sort of activity.

Yoga I like because it's slow but you still get quite a full workout. And all the stretching is really good cause I don't want to end up creaking when I'm older. I remember my first yoga class and how I thought it was too "touchy-feely" with all the "empty your mind. release your negative thoughts", but now I am more accepting of it. I do like how you can't let your mind wander and have to fully focus on your practice.

Pole was a surprising discovery. Starting out was hard as I had no upper body much less any core strength. So there was a lot of struggle when I first started out. But for some reason despite all the pain and torture, I still love it. One year on and I have built up quite a bit of strength compared to before. The amount of bruises you get from it though are no joke. Sometimes my whole leg can be bruised from trying to learn new tricks. Despite all that, the satisfaction of getting a new trick is more than worth it.

In terms of healthy eating, I haven't drastically changed my diet. But I have tried to avoid sugary drinks, unhealthy snacks and whatnot. Of course I still snack on crisps sometimes but overall my eating regime is much better. I have also developed a love for making smoothies. And most of the time it's green smoothies. It's a great way of getting loads of vegetables into your system while still drinking something tasty and the frozen fruits usually mask the taste of the vegetables.

So yes, I might be getting older and my metabolism may be dropping but I hopefully "crosses fingers" won't be getting fat and saggy anytime soon.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014


So the end is nigh. The end of 2014 that is.

I see that everyone is doing a summary/recap of how their 2014 went. As for me? Far too much has happened in the space of a year that I'm not going to try and list out every single event.

However I will say that 2014 has been quite the roller coaster. I feel like I've learnt so much in just this one year. Sure it may not be the traditional things like studies seeing as I've been taking my post uni gap year. But the experiences of doing something else in life besides just studying and working really are quite valuable. If not for personal development at least they make for great conversation.

I'm not much of a non-fiction reader and this past year I haven't been reading as much as I used to but the books that I have picked up are geared more towards the factual side. For some reason I find it harder to get lost in fictional books as much as I used to. The psychological analysis for that would probably be that I am not so eager to get away from real life as much. Probably true, but I digress.

My main point was to recommend a book that I believe everyone should read. Especially if you are an introvert. It's called Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking  No it's not one of those self help books that is meant to change your life. But I think it's a good read for everyone to understand people a little bit more. I am definitely an introvert by nature. Yet I've found in the past year that the first impression I give off has been that of an extrovert! The book talks about how many introverts in life will slowly learn to be what is known as a pseudo-extrovert. Someone who changes to a more extroverted nature because that is what society is more welcoming off. Definitely has happened to me. While I believe introverts should read to book just so you can feel less out of place in the world, it's the extroverts who would benefit more from it I think. For them to understand that when someone just wants to stay at home by themselves doing their own thing, it's not because they are getting old and boring but because they just need to recharge.

All that aside, one thing for sure is that I am definitely getting better at this life thing. 

Friday, November 21, 2014

into the jungle.

So it's been just about one month since I've started my internship at KinkyBlueFairy. And I've learnt/done so much more than I ever thought I would. I thought I'd be doing lots of small tasks but because I joined during their busiest period, it's been a bit hectic at times.

1. Got to see what it's like to set up a stall at Seek & Keep @ BSC.
2. Wrote a couple of blog posts. Let me tell you straight up that so much more work goes into a blog post than you can imagine. From making sure you've included all the necessary info, editing every single picture that appears as well as trying to make the post engaging.
3. Saw the BTS of a product photoshoot. Seriously, it takes up a whole freaking day.
4. Uploading stock info onto the e-commerce site.
5. And the most stressful thing of all being preparing for The Ship in Singapore. No jokes. Packing and labeling 10 boxes of stock, interviewing people to be on the sales team, and getting the 101 small items that you don't even know you need till you need it. Worse thing is I'm not even on The Ship because I'm still waiting on my visa so no passport!!! ='(

But it's really been a great month! Everyone on the team has been fun and nice and just generally giving off some great vibes. Even though there are times where we end up working till late, it doesn't ever feel like a drag and time passes so quickly. Just the day before I was working on a presentation and time just slipped away that when I checked the time it was already 9pm.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

all about that bass.

Time to blog about my Bangkok and Siem Reap trip!

Honestly I wasn't really into going to Bangkok again because 1. I've already been and done all the touristy things and 2. Sam is probably not as into shopping as I am. And that's saying a lot because I am not a shopaholic. While I do enjoy a fair bit of window shopping, I don't actually buy anything unless I think it's super worth the price or on a massive discount.

However since Thailand is apparently a must do for S.E.A the agreement was that Sam would let me go shopping with minimal whining from him. Haha.


Got into Don Mueang Airport in the evening and was planning to take a cab to the airbnb I booked but the queue for the taxi was super long. So after one of the airport personnel told us it would be easier to take the shuttle to Mo Chit BTS that's what we did. The rain did not make things any easier as it meant traffic was even worse than usual, and that's saying something for Bangkok. Getting to the nearest station to the airbnb was pretty easy and the skytrain was quite empty when we boarded so we got to sit down. Alighting at Saphan Taksin BTS and a quick cab ride later(bnb was actually walking distance but it was late) we finally arrived at the apartment.

The apartment was really nice and for only £24 a night a pretty good deal!

Link to the apartment. 

It started pouring soon after we got settled in so we just went to the restaurant at the bottom of the next block of apartments for dinner. It was Indian for our first meal in Thailand but it was pretty good Indian I must say.

Next morning we headed into the city because Sam had an interview to attend. Because you know, nothing is better than having to attend an interview while on holiday. So while that was happening, I went off to do a bit of shopping! At Platinum mall of course. For the uninitiated, Platinum mall is a wholesale mall where many blogshops buy their stock from. You can see many girls with massive suitcases stocking up on all these cheap and wonderful goodies. The main problem I faced is that you usually have to buy 2 or 3 items from the same shop to get the wholesale price but since I was shopping alone it meant I didn't buy some things I liked because it was probably the only item I did like. But I did get some savings like when I bought these two midi skirts which were 490 baht each but buying two brought the price down to 370 baht each.

After that I met back up with Sam for lunch where we had some tasty Korean fried chicken. Still no Thai food yet although I did get my mango and sticky rice fix in the Platinum mall food court when I had a break from shopping. I then convinced him to go back into Platinum mall because he needed some new shirts and probably a whole new wardrobe but unfortunately my powers of persuasion only managed to get him to buy two shirts and two tshirts.

A pretty long cab ride back to the apartment due to surprise surprise bad traffic.

Dinner was at Tawandang German Brewery at Rama III road. You definitely need to take a cab there as it is quite out of the city. I used the myteksi(also called Grabtaxi out of Malaysia) app to book the cab so I didn't have any issues with the taxi not using the meter or getting us lost.

The main attraction being of course the beer they make in house. So finally beer that wasn't Tiger, Heineken or Carlsberg.

Their pale ale.
Really hoppy so my favourite of all. 

The dark ale.
Pretty good as well. 

Typical Thai food.

The food was not bad but also slightly on the pricier side for Bangkok. The restaurant also has live music the whole night which makes the atmosphere in the restaurant nice and lively. Most tables there seem to be locals having a night out as you can order 3L beer towers. The most amusing thing that I found was that in the girls toilet was a sink that had a sign about it saying "For vomiting only". None of that in the men's toilet though. 


Late start the next day as someone coughsamcough wanted to wake up naturally without an alarm so that meant only waking up at 10am. After getting coffee in this hipster art cafe just up the road we made our way to this restaurant closer to the BTS for some lunch.

It's called Queen of Curry at 49 Charoenkrung, Soi 50. While they clearly cater to a lot of tourists where they had an option of either European or Thai level of spiciness for all their curries, the food was good. We ordered a bowl of chicken Tom Yam and some duck curry with both being delicious.

Next it was off to the main tourist attraction of Bangkok. The Grand Palace.Took the riverboat from the Saphan Taksin pier. Got onto one of the local ones which meant a ticket up to the Grand Palace was only 15baht as opposed to the 150baht for the tourist boat. 

And of course while walking from the pier to the gates of the Grand Palace there were plenty of people telling you that you had to buy their shawls or long pants or otherwise you won't be allowed into the Grand Palace. While it is true that Thailand is quite strict on their no shoulders and no knees dress code, the Thai government actually provides rental of suitable clothing where you just have to put down a fully returnable deposit of 200baht. So we just ignored those touts although I did see a few tourists cave in and buy some clothes. 

Why do all the statues look so grumpy?

A rooster man. 

This is what Sam looks like when he's hungry. 

That pink crop top is in most of my tourist pictures cause I just keep it in my bag and throw it on when there is a dress code. And the hat was an excellent buy from Platinum mall the day before. 

We spent about 3 hours there and although I have been there before, it was still a fun time as the compound really is quite massive so there's always more to look at. 

That night we went to checkout Asiatique which is the newly opened night market. They provide free boat rides from the Saphan Taksin pier which meant there was a massive queue in the evening. But it was nice to get a free night boat ride. Had dinner in this fusion place as I was craving pasta for some reason. After that I wanted to get a massage as all that walking during the day gave me sore feet. And well, it's Bangkok so cheap massages are aplenty. I got a one hour foot massage for 390baht I think while Sam had a few more beers in one of the bars. Day 2 done!


I had planned the Bangkok trip to cover the weekend so that I could go to Chatuchak market. Sam was a bit grumpy about waking up early to go but since I wanted to avoid the crowds we left the apartment at 9am. Which is actually not early enough as the crowds were already coming in when we got there. After half an hour of wandering around, Sam had a funny tummy so he went back to the apartment first while I wandered around a bit more. Didn't actually buy that much since I had already had my fill of shopping from Platinum mall. I did enjoy just looking at all the things they had for sale as you can pretty much buy anything and everything in the market. I also stopped by this stall for some duck noodles which was served with coagulated duck blood. Overall it was quite yummy and I did enjoy the creamy texture of the blood though I'm not sure whether it's something that I would seek out if it didn't already come with. Stall food is not something that many people want to try for fear of food poisoning but to me as long as it's piping hot or there are lots of locals eating there, it should a-okay to consume. 

The rain started getting heavier so I decided to head back to the apartment. We then went to the nearby mall to grab a snack before yet another massage! I just love massages. This time it was a full body massage and it was to be Sam's first time having a massage. And he liked it. Thai massages may not be everyone's cup of tea and it can be painful if not done properly but the place we went to was good and the masseuses managed to press all the soreness out of us. We had our massage at this place right next to Wat Yannawa. It was less of a massage parlour as they also provided traditional chinese medicine services such as cupping and it was filled with locals so I'd say it was a wellness centre. 

Dinner was at 25 Degrees at Pullman hotel. Supposedly one of the better burger joints in Bangkok, I am sad to say that it was remarkably average. 

That wraps up my Bangkok trip. This has turned into quite a wordy post haha.  

Tuesday, July 08, 2014


Plans. Something to get you to where you wanna be.

I used to have plans. But they weren't for getting me to something, more like getting me away from something. I used to think about my plan in every spare moment, because, of course I wanted to make sure that it wouldn't fail. That my plan would succeed.

But what happens when the thing I wanted to get away from leaves my life because of another incident? Suddenly all the plans I made were of no use to me anymore. Not because it wasn't a good feasible plan, but because I knew it was a much longer timeline to happiness, to a life of my choice.

Now? I have no plans. I believe that trying to get away from something is much stronger motivation than aiming towards something. People will tell you to reach for the stars. And you may try, try quite hard in fact, but you won't try as hard if the ground around you was filled with rotting rubbish rather than the tiled floor it is now.

After all, the stars are pretty, but the tiled floor ain't so bad. 

Wednesday, June 04, 2014

top speed.

Sometime I feel like a really bad blogger because I barely blog anymore. I remember a time when I used to blog at least every other day. But now? One post a month. Oh well...

To continue on with my Raleigh experience.

After "Dive Island", it was back to basecamp for 36hours of rest and group reshuffling.

I had been hoping to be put into the water gravity feed team because that project seemed harder to come by than the community learning centre/kindergarden building project. But of course life never really gives you what you want and I ended up in the CLC/Kindergarden group.

HOWEVER, I really ended up enjoying myself on the project!

What we first arrived to. Quite a lot of work put in by the first phase but also a lot of work to be done if it was gonna be in operation in 5 weeks.

Where we would be staying.

This project was considered one of the "luxurious"one as it is it only project where you get to sleep on a bed. That's right! A real bed with sheets and pillows and blankets. So basically it was either 2/3 to a room which had double decker beds. Also electricity. 

One interesting experience was the first night. Most of us in the group(Alpha 1) had just come off the Adventure phase which meant we were still in "jungle" mode. And on the first night of dinner, we had taken the tables and chairs out from the living room and had our dinner out in the dark with our head torches. Nobody made any comment about this at all until halfway through the meal Hugh (one of the PMs) made a comment how this was a new experience for him. As he had been in the same project in the previous phase, we asked him how the previous group had their meals then. He simply replied that they had their meals in the living room where there was electricity and therefore light! The funny thing is none of us even thought of having our meals indoors as we were all so used to being outdoors all the time. One benefit of not using the light is that insects were less likely to fly into our food. 

The next day we were all invited to a wedding. The village we were in Kampung Togudon, is not that large and made up of mostly one family. Domissin (one of the brothers) would be leading our project as head carpenter and it was Zita (one of the sisters) who had pushed for the building of this centre. 

The wedding was a new experience as I had never attended a Dusun wedding before. However weddings don't really differ from culture to culture, they all are basically a large joyous affair with lots of food, dancing, singing and drinking. 

The bride and groom have to drink out of this. 
Not quite sure what's in it but the straw is made out of bamboo. 

Let me talk a little now about the process of building the CLC. Pretty much all of us in the group had little to no experience in the building/DIY experience. Now we were expected to pick up a hammer and nail all day, take measurements accurately and do a hell a lot of sawing. I would say it was a slightly steep learning curve for the first one week as we learned the proper techniques for hammering, measuring and sawing. Safe to say that the first week had a lot of bent nails that wouldn't go in and planks/boards that were cut too short or crooked. But vast improvement once we got the hang of it!

Can't tell you how happy I was when I hammered my first 3-inch nail in perfectly! Sounds like such a small thing but it was definitely an achievement for me who had never held a hammer before. 

Sunday was our rest days so we usually did some sort of activity. We went down to the local town to just hang around and do shopping. We also went to a nearby "swimming" area which is basically just a river. But we had missed out power showers. Haha. 

There was a sort of karaoke session going on at the swimming area. 
Our two beloved PMs Dickie and Hugh having a little sing-a-long. 

And that was us being dragged on stage as well.
Lots of fun and laughter!!

Phase 2 was also the time to film our music video. Every group had to film a music video in tune to the chosen theme song for the expedition. The song for our expedition was Let's Get Ready to Rumble by Ant & Dec. It was fun to record to as the lyrics are just ridiculous but also a bit strange as unless you were British, very unlikely you would actually know the song. Another funny story is that the song is mainly rap and we didn't get any lyrics to it! So we had to spend an hour or two listening intently trying to figure out exactly what was said and never being sure whether we were right. At the end of our phase we found out that we were actually given the lyrics but the PMs left it behind at basecamp. No harm done but it did make filming a bit more tedious. 

Some photos of us prepping for the video. We went for a gangster theme.
The girls.
L-R:Me, Char, Kate, Stef and Jenny.

The boys minus Jack who doesn't do dress up.
L-R: Archie, Q(although you can't see his face), Michiel and Will. 

Welcome to Kg. Togudon's tattoo parlour. 

Will's arm. 

Part of the lyrics were "Raw, a kill like sushi." So that's Archie being wrapped up as sushi.

Hugh and Dickie who were sporting enough to be roped in to our little dress up!

Now the reason the music video was of the utmost importance is because the winning theme would get a COOKED BREAKFAST. A full English breakfast!!! Now if you read my precious post you'd know that for 10 weeks all we'd have for breakfast is porridge so a cooked breakfast was quite a reward!


The compilation of our winning clips!

Below is the music video played at the end of expedition party which is a compilation of every groups efforts which made for a funny video.

On our last night there we had a party with all the villagers. We cooked some food they cooked some food, we sang songs they sang songs, we danced together, we even got a go at their gongs! Much harder to keep the rhythm that you would think.

A look at what we accomplished over 21 days. 

Cladding all round.

The ceiling panels. 

Where we left it.

What proved to be a recurring problem is the bendy wood. Cause all the wood was sourced from the nearby forest, the quality was not consistent. So sometimes we had perfect pieces of wood that we nice and straight, and other times they were bent like a banana! It meant getting everything nailed in straight required a lot more patience and nails than normal. 

But overall a great phase with lots of fun but lots of learning too. 

Other things we did that I won't blog about in detail. English lessons for the village women and children (everyone was soooo nice!) the ladies brought us bananas and even gave us a cooking lesson. Going to a church service where everything was in Dusun (the church was an hours walk uphill). The bajillion card games we played that we even had a "Speed" tournament board.  

Was sad to see this phase end as it meant we were only one phase away from the end.