Wednesday, April 23, 2008

:: for the first time....:::

.... that my new boss was reluctant that i have decided to go back fly back home to singapore (and work from home) only for 2 weeks! it was never an issue with ANYONE before. i told him flatly, if this is indeed an issue, i will quit! after all, it's my contract which provides a ticket for every quarterly :p
.... my dutch 'friends' (who i have only met twice!) said that i'm arrogant by default - because i'm singaporean and their singaporeans friends and experiences are apparently full of bitch-dom and whore-mongering.
... an american that i met at a party told me of this joke, 'they should only have 2 lanes at the airports - poor countries and rich countries' - upon knowing that i was a singaporean, which sort of enforcing the arrogance stereotypes.
.... flights with SIA to Singapore were all full until next week! i forgot there is long dutch holidays coming up, and this makes me happy that i have decided to be away from here - just like the thousand other dutchies on their way to asia for their holidays.
... i will miss queen's night/day celebration for the first time since i came to the netherlands.

there is always first time for everything, x!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

:: restaurant review : London - Busaba Eathai ::

if you like good thai meals at a rather affordable price (at least by london's standards), i would strongly recommend busaba eathai

it was so good, that i had 3 meals within 2 days at this bistro. i had visited 3 of their outlets throughout london. on the first night, i have to travel (by london red bus) from bond street to soho and ended up at tottenham court.

that's me - if i like something, i don't mind eating it over and over again, simple taste for simple mind.

the service is good, food is delicious but i have to warn you that the queues are long...

click on the photos for descriptions.... selamat makan! x

From Busaba Eathai...

:: love is stronger than pride ::

what i really want to do now is to skate along east coast parkway in singapore, and listening to this haunting and mesmerising song many times over.

indeed, love is stronger than pride.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

:: a celebration of life ::

the realization that a colleague has passed away, and all that's left was just an empty desk (with some of his personal possessions) finally came through.

this morning was his funeral - at his hometown, zoetemeer. quite a few of us from work car-pooled and took time off to be there, one even flew from london just for the funeral.

it was a very simple funeral, yet very meaningful. there were moving eulogy from people at work and his family.

but it was his wife's speech that moved me the most. it was mostly in dutch, of course, but she translated the last part of the speech because she wanted everyone to understand something so universal, yet so neglected: love.

she said that in all their years of marriage, bram would always make sure to call her everyday (since he travelled to most parts of the world for work) and tell her that everything was good and how much he loved her. she ended her speech by reminding us to call our loved ones before sunset, and reminded them how much we loved them.

i did...i called my mom later.

this is not the first time that someone from work has passed away, i've had this unfortunate experience before in 2004.

what made this funeral somewhat special was the generosity of his family to remind us that what matters most is not when a person has gone, but the celebration of each other, as human beings when we are all alive and well. and i guess that was the spirit of the funeral - a celebration of his life. wines, beers and rosé were served after the ceremony.

instead of trying to comfort his wife in this difficult moment, i felt that she was reassuring me. she remembered our conversations and dinners together in krakow, and how we seemed to be connected spirituality. they trusted me as they sensed that my energy was a good one. we talked and we smiled, i hid my tears, but it was difficult.

before i left the funeral, i thanked her and her sons because they have shared a generous and kind man into my life - someone who is not only a colleague, but another fellow human being.

and with that, i have moved on.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

:: rest in peace Bram Lavino ::

i lost a colleague today - from a cancerous brain tumour.

i have received the news as i was having a teleconference with houston and london.
it was so shocking that i didn't know how to compose myself and trying to talk business - when it was too much, i told my other colleagues on the other line about the news.
needless to say that they were sadden too by the news, and we had the call postponed to a better time.
the work day was too busy that i didn't have much time to grief for his lost.

but tonight, i did.
you see, before he left for the hospital, on his last day at work, he gave me a cd recording of him playing the synthesizer - something which he did while waiting for the test results.

while listening to a track from music 'time to say goodbye', i completely lost it.
for a moment, i grief for his lost and yet, i am thankful to know him (and his wife and children).

his funeral is next wednesday, and i'm hoping that everyone will remember and celebrate his life.

i'll write for it in another entry, i'm sure.


Tuesday, April 01, 2008

:: london - winter to spring 08 ::

just some snapshots of london, i used to be so tired of it, but now no more.
thinking of even relocating there... :)