Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Day after hurricane in afternoon and night

Posted by Dawn at Wednesday, August 31, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
After the morning walk, we went over to Colin's place to visit them. Heard that some shops were opened and Colin would be going out with some colleagues to buy burner to cook food easily. The shops opened were Home Depot which sells DIY stuff and Winn Dixie, a supermarket.

So, we went together with Kok Fong as we needed to save petrol cos all petrol stations were closed. We dropped by at Home Depot and was shocked to see the long queue. People were queuing up to buy generators.

We got back into the car and drove to Winn Dixie. I needed to buy candles and lighter. Kok Fong bought charcoal and kerosene to quickly set up the fire to cook. As we drove back, it was shocking to see the damage of some houses and trees.

Traffic lights were all not working..The major junctions had traffic police directing..but for some junctions, we had to treat it as a 4-way stop sign..so we had to stop and give way..

I was glad to come out of the house as we were bored stiff. Without power, there is really nothing much to do but read, prepare for meals, sleep and wait for time to pass...and listening to radio.

We decided to start fire for lunch and dinner today cos we needed to finish some food in the fridge before it was spoilt. So, we tried starting fire but unable to as our place was quite windy and it was facing the cars..so, CT went over to Kok Fong's place and it seemed better. So, we brought our food over and started fire at their place.

Had egg noodles soup with minced meat ball, cabbage and egg for lunch. It took us a long while to cook. It was tough as we only have twigs and some twigs are damped due to the rain. The charcoal and kerosene Kok Fong bought helped a little only..We only managed to eat at about 1 plus pm. Starving.. took us almost 2 hours to start fire and cook!

After lunch, we washed up. Thank God,there was still water. My only form of news was from my MP3 player which has radio..so I kept listening to what was going on in New Orleans, Mississippi and our area.

Me and CT planned to go Orlando this weekend as it is the Labor Day weekend and we were supposed to fly from New Orleans. So, I was listening to whether the airport would be ready by Saturday. However, it does not seem like it would..so I was very disappointed cos I was looking forward to the Disney trip.

I prayed to God and as honest before Him...I said that the last time I planned to go Tennessee with my parents and was cancelled because of accident and now this. I told God that I feel very disappointed as each time I looked forward to a trip, something had to crop up. I cried before Him and prayed that He would do something so that I can still go Orlando.

CT was trying to cheer me up but I just cried..

We slept in the afternoon after lunch and at about 4 pm, we went back to Kok Fong's place to start fire for dinner. Kok Fong was still using the fire as their lunch took a very long time to cook..Poor thing. I had eggplant with sambal blachan and curry with rice for dinner. Yummy. I enjoyed it very much. We had an early dinner as CT's colleague bought a burner which took so fast to cook. It was blue fire..so very strong.

We had dinner at about 530pm..starving..so we just ate at that time...and since nothing else to do.

CT loves curry with his rice..so do I..so we enjoyed our dinner very much.

CT is beginning to eat egg plant/brinjal and lady fingers already..yay!! He loves it with sambal blachan..

After dinner, we went over to the singles place..to see them cook. They cook together and share their food..so it was interesting visiting them..

Chen Twok was the main chef..he starts up the fire and cooks for all of them. Heard he starts cooking early and ends his cooking at about 9 pm..as they have so much food to cook.

The rest of them were playing mahjong, killing flies, preparing food to cook, etc..just like kampong living..

Here are some pictures.. Teck Meng and Anthony were taking turns to whack the flies..and they use scotch tape to display their victories after the killing..so sadistic..









































When the sun sets, we went home and we used the candle. We placed it in the living room and started talking. I was playing my guitar..so it was like a mini camp fire..haha..me and CT facing each other across the candle light. I told CT I would play a tune and he make up something and sing..haha..so we did..and boy, he sang about how we met..and what we did on our first date..it was very cute.

We had so much fun singing and playing the guitar. After a while, we played with shadows. Here is a picture..


We went to bed shortly later as we were getting tired. The dark really has an effect on how tired you would be. When it gets dark, you just automatically want to sleep. It was interesting just looking outside our window and see everything dark..no lights at all..

Day after hurricane in morning

Posted by Dawn at Wednesday, August 31, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
This morning, woke up at 6:30am since I slept early last night. It was bright already and the weather was great. It was cooling and sunny. I excitedly went out to breathe the fresh air and to buy newspapers since no TV. However, it was sunday's newspapers instead of Monday's. But I still bought it as I wanted to read something about the hurricane.
I quickly woke CT up so that we can walk around to see the damage the hurricane has done. So, we walked and checked out the area after breakfast in the dark..with some light coming in.

Many trees were uprooted as well as parts of trees broken away. The floor and roads were very messy with leaves and branches.




















We even managed to walk out to the roads to see the shops and road conditions..

We were shocked to see the damage it did to the shops and yet, our apartment was protected though it was the same area.

























Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Hurricane Katrina arrives

Posted by Dawn at Tuesday, August 30, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
This morning, we watched the news and saw that the hurricane would hit the land soon. People in New Orleans were evacuating. Sad to say, New Orleans is a poor city and so, many were unable to evacuate esp the African-Americans. So, they had to go to SuperDome for shelter. Superdome is supposed to be structurally strong enough to withstand the hurricane. So, people were lining up to go into it.

Had cereals this morning for breakfast to finish off the milk. At about 11 am, the power was cut. We wer ewatching VCD halfway when the power was cut. So irritating esp when the show was at its climax. Initially, we thought it would come back on..but it did not. CT do not have to go work today and tomorrow. So, when it was cut..we were at a lost as to what to do.

We could only stay indoors as the winds were so strong and it was pouring. We were afraid that our glass windows would be broken because of the wind impact. So, we just sat and talked...and kept taking a peek outside through our windows to see the trees moving furiously. The wind was so strong that we thought our cars would fly. Kok Fong called and asked if we put up the hand brakes in the car...

For lunch, we had no choice but to take bread and ham.

Whole day, what we did was..read book,peek outside window once a while to see the wind damage it did to the trees.

I am glad at about night time, the rain stopped, though the wind was still quite strong..

We heard someone knocking on the door. It was Kok Fong and wife. We were surprised they came over cos the wind was still strong. They told us that Colin's house would be having BBQ. So, we went over and took a look. They were actually well prepared and picked twigs the day before to start fire. His wife does the fire as she comes from Myanmar and she says they still do this at her house. So she is so skilled in starting fire.

We brought rice to cook and leftovers from dinner last night to heat up. So, we had pork rib with salted veggies and rice for dinner. Yum. Though it is only a dish, we enjoyed it so much cos it was hard to come by..since there is no power.

That is Colin's wife from Myanmar. They brought along their 2 kids. The oldest is only 2 years old. Very cute. She speaks Chinese to us. She does not understand English.

They found the black containers few days ago along the road in the apartment. So, they picked it up and used it to start fire inside and cook their food. Well prepared right?? We were all amazed.

The first night without power was not so bad as the weather was cooling since it was the same day as hurricane. There was light rain at night..so we could sleep quite well.

We bought 2 torch lights in Walmart the day before and so we used it to move around in the apartment..used it to give light for bathing..

Slept early since we cannot do much without power. Slept at about 9pm.

Took a peek before we slept outside and it was pitched black since all the power has been cut off in Mobile..oh well..what a day!

Monday, August 29, 2005

Update of Hurricane Katrina

Posted by Dawn at Monday, August 29, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
Right now, it is 6pm and we are still waiting for further calls from CT's office on whether we should evacuate or not. Highway towards east (I-10E) is jammed from the traffic news on TV as people are evacuating and driving towards the east.

2 Zones of Mobile has been issued a mandatory evacuation and it seems my area is not affected yet. The 2 zones are nearer the Mobile Bay area...so more prompt to the hurricane. However, the radar also shows there will be tornadoes up north as well...so it seems I am now stuck here in my apartment.

The news watch has been showing update of the hurricane in many channels and one channel showed the eye of the storm approaching the land and they measured the eye of the storm and it is 35 miles long!! That means almost 60km wide...bigger than Singapore. So, those area in the eye of the hurricane will have massive damage.

So now, not only is there a hurricane watch, but a tornado watch.. Hurricane is from water while tornado is in land..So, that is the difference. Many shelters have been opened up for people to go to. I have no idea where they are but in any case, it seems impossible to move now because of the jam and of the storm surge that can go up to 20 over feet...so impossible to travel on causeway now to other states..

It is raining on/off in my area now and all seems calm...though very cloudy.

Ok, that's all for my update. Pray for minimal damage. Thanks!

Not leaving at the moment

Posted by Dawn at Monday, August 29, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
When we came straight home after church just now, we had to wait for instructions from CT's company on whether to evacuate or not. The safety manager called our place and told us to stay. I was actually in the midst of packing when he called.

We are told to stay because the hard hit will be in Mississippi and New Orleans. However, we are doubtful because we are just next to Mississippi and if the wind direction change a little, we will be hit. I guess until the mayor states that Mobile has to be evacuated, if not, we will still stay. CT says he does not like the feeling of just waiting in our house for the hurricane to come.

Went to Walmart just now to stock up and boy, it was crowded!! The windows of Walmart were covered with planks of wood to prepare for hurricane and there was no trolleys as all has been taken up. However, we took one from the car park and wheeled it in as someone told us to do so.

As expected, all the big gallons of water were swiped, canned food and bread almost depleting on the shelves and long queues were spotted at the counter. What a sight.

I managed to take a picture of the bread shelf..here it is. What was left was all the bagels. Bagels are donut-shaped bread, closest to the camera. (from the picture).

Another picture I took was yesterday when Hurricane Katrina was not a threat yet...can see from the clouds a storm is coming..This picture was taken at 5pm which is usually very bright and sunny.


Biggest hurricane in history

Posted by Dawn at Monday, August 29, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
I just came back from church and when I listened to the radio, it was scary when the news reported that it is the biggest hurricane in the North Atlantic so far and has become a category 5 hurricane. The winds are 175 mph which is more than 280 km/h!! So far in history, there has only been 3 cases reported Category 5 hurricane in US..so this is one of them!

For more updates, pls go to www.weather.com . I will prob have to quickly evacuate now with all my stuff and drive somewhere else. Pls pray and send this to all fellow Christians to pray for this storm.

The news also said that it will hit my area at a height of 20 feet. It will come crashing in the Mobile Bay area and the bay can only take up to 18 feet. The highways heading towards New Orleans as been close and all schools has been closed due to this.

There has been advertisements about insurance and steps to take before leaving the house like taking pictures of it and bringing your insurance and recording the insurance no. and all that...so they are really expecting a great storm.


Ok, got to go now and pack up! Pls pray for safety and all! Thanks! Below is a picture of the hurricane coming..

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Hurricane Katrina

Posted by Dawn at Saturday, August 27, 2005 1 comments Links to this post
CT left the house this morning already and I woke up switching on the TV on weather channel. There has been a hurricane going on at florida keys area. It is called Hurricane Katrina. The news reported that some area experienced flooding about 1/2 m deep.

It is reported that it will hit around my area on Mon- Tues. Everyone staying around the region have been in high alert because of the past hurricane damage that have taken place before this already. I really wonder how residents can stay by the beach, experiencing this all the time.

This is picture taken from the weather channel...the path of the hurricane.


Now, everyone staying near there can only wait and see what will happen as it comes nearer before we take any actions, including me.

CT's night out

Posted by Dawn at Saturday, August 27, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
Today, woke up with a slight headache. Guess because I did not sleep well. But anyway, after CT left, I do not go back to sleep alr. Instead, I would do housework and play with the computer.

Today,Gek Teng came over in the afternoon to chit chat and get Orlando brochures for me as I got some discount coupons for her from the Florida Welcome Center when I went Destin Beach last week. She is more free today as it is Friday and she usually goes out with Kok Fong for dinner, so she does not need to prepare dinner. However, tonight, CT's colleagues arranged for dinner together at Golden Corral-this western buffet place which is great for steak lovers! There was a dinner tonight because some technicians and James' wife, Angeline would be going back Singapore next week. So, it was kind of a farewell party.

However, me and CT did not go because CT had to attend a Christian conference for guys. There will be bands performing, messages and all. It is quite a big thing in US and it is rare for them to come to Mobile. So, I encouraged and supported CT to go as it would be a great opportunity for him to learn and experience what God can do in his life. Somehow, I believe God will change him for the better through this as I feel so much peace to just let him go, though I would be all alone at home for 2 days as it is a 2 days conference. (http://www.promisekeepers.org/home)



So, CT came home at 5pm today to have early dinner. He left at 5:30pm as he would be meeting Bob, his colleague cum churchmate at this place and CT would hop onto his car. Heard some of CT's American colleagues would be going and they have reserved a whole block of seats of one another already. Think Bob's dad is going too. I think it is nice for CT to hang out with his friends as I truly feel we should have time for our own friends as well.

CT said he would be coming back at about 11pm. I would def wait for him. SO, at the mean time, other than washing up the dishes, watching TV and playing computer, I have been reading my book.

Tomorrow's CT would leave the house before 7:30am for the conference as it starts about 8am. So, I would be home alone again till 6pm when he finishes then we will have dinner together. I told Gek Teng this afternoon to call me before she goes Asian Mart as I would like to go with her to get Asian Veggies. :)

Initially, Gek Teng said that I could still go tonight for the farewell party, but I feel it is strange to go and not eat as it is a buffet place. I would feel out of place. But I planned to arrange a lunch next week with Angeline before she returns to Singapore to give birth.

Friday, August 26, 2005

Losing weight

Posted by Dawn at Friday, August 26, 2005 6 comments Links to this post
Ok, finally, 2 weeks of exercise has paid off as CT seem to look slightly slimmer. When he went back to Singapore in Aug, all friends and family members who saw him commented that he put on weight. That will be their first comment or statement they make when they saw him. It was funny but yet, I know he doesnt want that kind of statement when he go back for good in Jan.

So, he has been doing situps and pushups when he come home from work every night. Sometimes, he would go jogging and sometimes, we would play tennis. He can finally put back his wedding ring on. Yay..haha..

Sometimes, he would do weights by stretching out my legs on his hand as he lifts them up. So fun cos I am just relaxing my legs on his hand while he exercises. I have not been so disciplined as I would like to. The swimming pool gets dirty easily, so I seldom swim and moreover, the weather is very unpredictable here.

Tonight, they had been so many thunder every few seconds..

Now every night, we would switch off the TV while we have dinner so as to spend quality time together. I told him that if you like quality time, the best time is when eating as both of us would be at the table. I also told him that I would like to make this a habit for our family next time as time is always an issue and if we do not set this rule, we would hardly have time for each other as a family.

Last time, we also wanted a LCD TV in our bedroom but I have decided not to get it for the same reason.

I read somewhere and from a friend that when you eat, you should not be doing anything else but eat so that your brain knows that you are eating. If not, you will feel hungry easily and start eating tidbits and other stuff, thus making you put on weight.

But I cannot imagine eating with people and not talking..so I'd rather use eating time to share about what took place during the day, then to watch TV, eat and talk- at least reduce one distraction.

These few days, I have been emailing Esther about our trip to Arkansas as Esther would be coming down end of Oct to mid week of Nov and spend some time together in Mobile and Arkansas. Esther used to stay in Arkansas, so she would take us around and catch up with her friends there as well. So exciting.

Actually, I was hesitant when Esther told me she was coming to visit. Because of the accident that took place here. I am afraid ..it is just a nightmare I cannot forget. But once I put that aside, I think it is exciting for loved ones to come and visit.

In the afternoon, I was clearing my emails and I read the old mails where my friends tell me how excited I must be for my parents to come over to US. When I read all those mails that happened before the accident, I cried..because at that point, I never knew this would happen to my family..to my loved ones.

Anyway, I have been looking at what to do in Arkansas and it seems a very nice, quiet area.

Here is a map of the South of USA where I stay..Mobile is just near the border of Florida right at the bottom facing the Gulf oF Mexico. So, to travel to the nearest Florida Beach would be about 45mins drive - 1 hr. Not that far from my place.

Many of CT's colleagues go to Mississippi, Biloxi to gamble as Biloxi is a gambling area with casinos all along the beach...That is about an hour plus drive.

Whenever I travel, we would go to Louisiana, New Orleans and fly from there as that is the nearest International Airport, so the flights out from there are cheaper. It is about 2 hours drive.

So, hope you have a better idea of US now and where I stay. :)

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Went swimming

Posted by Dawn at Thursday, August 25, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
Today, I kind of got bored at home...so I asked Gek Teng if she would like to swim and she was spontaneous enough to go with me even though she was watching Korean VCD halfway. She is a great friend I must say. The weather was great to swim as it was not too sunny. The water was hot though and I had a great swim trying to do some exercise.

Angeline came to my house to give me some dessert. It is white fungus, dried longan with red date dessert. Yummy. So, that was what we had after our dinner.

After dinner, was watching this reality show called, " So, you think you can dance". It is by the same producer as American Idol but instead of a singing contest, it is a dancing contest. It is very nice to watch because they will draw lots for a dancing partner and draw lots to see what kind of dance you will dance for the competition. Every week, they will have to dance a different one. So, a lot of guys join the competition being good in hip hop, but they have to be flexible to train themselves in other kind of dance like "quick steps", "Lyrical Jazz" etc...ballroom dancing.. very cool!

I love to watch people dance as it is very expressive and graceful. I wish I could be like that but diff cos of my bad ankle and knee.. :(

So, can only enjoy other people dancing.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

In touch with old friends

Posted by Dawn at Wednesday, August 24, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
Today, I have been chatting with my ex-sec school friends via email. I have one who is in NY and was 2 years my senior in RGS.Her name is Adeline Khoo while the other one is in North Carolina, same age as me and used to be my classmate, called Gillian Wee. We were quite close in Sec school.

I chatted with them to find out more about NY since Adeline is there and Gillian studied there before. Gillian has an American-Korean boyfriend and she was showing me pictures of him. No comments on his looks. Adeline was telling me what to do in NY and when she mentioned about Madison Square Gardens having WWE (World Wrestling) and NBA..I quickly find out whether there will be any games or shows when I am there and I realised New York Knicks is playing against Utah Jazz in Madison Sq Garden on 23rd Dec- the day I arrive.

I excitedly emailed CT and he was all for it. I have not bought the tickets yet as I am trying to find out the best place to get cheap tickets. Cheapest is US$100 per person..so since it is not that cheap, I must source for more info before buying it at good price. CT loves basketball and I quite like watching it as well. Moreover, I always wanted to watch a NBA match.

So the whole day, I was finding out more about NY and getting good tickets for the basketball match. Was looking at broadway shows to catch as well. I would like to bring CT to watch "The Lion King" musical as I saw that in London and I loved it...so I do not mind watching it again. I love the Lion King songs and moreover, it is a Tony award winning musical.

Tonight, I cooked Char Siew Wanton Mee for dinner. It was successful..so happy. I made dumplings and put in hot water to cook instead of frying as it is healthier and less messy. The dumpling skin very thin and nice..I bought it from Asian Mart. I oven cooked the char siew and it turned out ok as well. It was dry noodles..so I cooked little gravy to be poured on the noodles. The gravy consisted of my left over dumpling filling-pork, prawn, sesame oil, oyster sauce, soy sauce and little water plus fresh cut chilli. Not bad.

Here is a picture of it..(I ate halfway and decided to take a picture)

Oh, the noodles is perfect. I was pleasantly surprised as usually I will not get real stuff from Asian Mart...but the noodles and the dumpling skin proved it wrong.

Cooked pork rib herbal soup as well.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Went to Angeline's house

Posted by Dawn at Tuesday, August 23, 2005 1 comments Links to this post
On Sunday, it was another restful day after church. Bought fried chicken from Hart's near church and went home to eat. Only allowed to spoil ourselves on weekends. However, we have been eating smaller portions instead of stuffing lots of food down our stomach which we used to do.

Watched VCDs in the afternoon and went to play tennis. However, it started drizzling. We laughed as it was like yesterday..so loser..always rain when we begin doing some activity. So, we stayed in the car. However, it was still drizzling and had lightning. After waiting a while, we decided to drive around outside our apartment to check out a park. But, we could not find it though it was in the map. So, we went home cos the lightning was too furious and scary for us.

We spent time talking about what we learnt in church about love languages and talked about each other's love languages. It was a great time.

Cooked bak ku teh for dinner. It was very nice.

Today, went to Angeline's house with Gek Teng as we have not seen her for very long as she has been in NY and touring all over USA with her brother. She is going to give birth in Nov and she is still travelling everywhere. I learnt more about NY from her and what to do as I would be going there in Dec for Christmas. It was pretty exciting hearing what I could do in NY from her.

Went back and prepared lunch. Reheated up my bak ku teh for lunch. Yum..

Oh, before we went Angeline's house, I was actually planning my Florida trip with Gek Teng in more details and specifically decided what to do when we reach till the day we leave as we will be going together and sharing the rental car together.

Had an interesting day cos of the excitement I felt when planning for trips.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Drive to Destin Florida

Posted by Dawn at Saturday, August 20, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
This morning, went to do the usual stuff. Go Walmart grocery shopping and to the Asian Market in the morning to get Asian Veggies. After that, we made our way to Florida. Actually, we wanted to take a look at Pensacola Beach in Florida but missed the turn to the beach..so instead, we carried on driving and decided to go to the next beautiful beach which is about 40 mins away, called Destin.

We had lunch at Destin town before going to beach..had burger and fries..what else? Then, we made our way to the beach. It is a beautiful area with very nice water.

We parked the car and got our stuff out..but by the time we walked to the beach, it was drizzling. So loser..hehe..So we got back to the car and waited till the rain stopped. We spent time reading in the car as we dropped by the Florida Welcome Centre on the way here..so I got a lot of brochures for our Florida trip in Sept and to read up more on the place. I love Florida...it has so much fun and nice beaches in the area. I love the beach as you can see cos of the water and how calming it looks when I see it. It has also great diving sites there..However, the negative side is the hurricanes. Oh well..

Anyway, after the rain stopped about half and hour later, we got down and set our towels on the sand. We walked to a place where there are not many people. The water is very salty but clear. No fishes though..only seaweeds. I brought apple and orange to eat in the beach.

CT was playing a lot in the water..keeping himself entertained. I just kept snapping pictures away...

I have placed the pictures in my photo website. Go take a look at the beach! (under Destin folder)
http://photos.yahoo.com/dlinglm

Spent about 2 hours at the beach and after that, we drove back. While driving back home, we experienced rain and lots of lightning. The lightning looks real scary in the sky..

Anyway, glad we made it home safe as I read about the couple who died in a car accident in Perth. So sad cos they are so young and expecting a baby. That is why, we must make our life more purposeful and meaningful before anything happens..since life is so uncertain.

So, do you know your purpose of living in the world?

Friday, August 19, 2005

End of week

Posted by Dawn at Friday, August 19, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
This morning, arranged to swim with Gek Teng at 830am. So, at that time,went over to her place to go tog to the pool. Her place is near the pool..so that is why I went to her house. We swam and talked till 10am. Quite fun. The weather was getting hot and sunny. So we got up and went back to our apartments.

Usually on fridays, we would go out and eat but CT requested staying home to eat since we do not want to overeat. Gek Teng commented that we are serious in losing weight. I guess we just prefer to eat Chinese food and it is more healthy to eat in and much cheaper. Moreover, CT has gotten 2 Walmart gift cards from his company and each costs about US$75 card. So, we made use of the card to shop for groceries. So, it is actually free to eat in!

However, we will eat out once or twice during weekends since we will be out.

Will be going to the beach tomorrow so I cannot wait!

The whole day, I was planning for our trips as there will be a number of holidays coming up. I was actually writing down which attraction to visit when I go Orlando, Florida in Sept 2-6th.

I have been Orlando twice already. The first time was when I was very young...with my family. My dad took our family to America and visited many states-including San Francisco, Hawaii, Florida,LA etc.The second time I visited Orlando was with the CSC Swim Team.IT was my first time travelling so far away from my family as I was only with my swimmates. We were sent to Fort Lauderdale for swimming training and I remembered running in the beach to the swimming hall of fame, where we were trained at by Olympic Coaches. Every morning, at 5 plus am, we had to run on the sand to the pool. It was about 2km long..Very tiring as running on sand is tedious. But I would say, though suffering from lots of aches, it was fun...as we stayed in Orlando Resort inside Disneyland after one week of tough training to enjoy ourselves and celebrate Christmas.

It was so fun staying inside Disney and I remembered buying gifts for one another and exchange presents during Christmas. So, what I did today was to write down what rides I would go when I visit Epcot, MGM, Magic Kingdom and Universal so that when we go there in Sept, me and CT would save time and just concentrate on the thrilling rides which I enjoyed the last time.

Another trip I planned was our Christmas trip to New York. Me and CT have planned to go to the ultimate dream place where people would love to celebrate Christmas in..that is New York..to enjoy the snow and the beautiful lights.
So, have been trying to compare prices for airlines and hotels to get a good price. However, it has been tough as the price increased so much for Christmas in New York. Air tickets costs about US$150 more to travel...

I enjoy planning for trips as it excites me whenever I read about the attractions and the reviews. Cannot wait to go there!!

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Exercise

Posted by Dawn at Thursday, August 18, 2005 1 comments Links to this post

This morning as usual, woke up to make breakfast for CT. Had a hot dog for breakfast. Heated the bun with margarine, garlic spread and cheese on it. Take a look!


I like my hot dog to have ketchup and mustard, while CT likes it only with chilli sauce. So, our breakfast table usually has a lot of stuff as we have different tastes of some food. Breakfast is usually with a drink-either Orange Juice or Milo.

In the morning, while watching TV, I was doing situps in front of the tv. I planned to do them everyday to get back a leaner tummy. Did 100 situps today.

Besides that, played tennis with CT right when he came back at 6pm. We played for one and a half hour. Played against him and the one who reaches 5 games wins...and I won by a game! Fluke... But it was fun as I enjoy playing tennis. (as long as it is nearby)

After that, CT played with Anthony as he came alone without any partner. I did not want to play as I was too tired. I waited for them to finish before we went back. To go to the tennis court, even though it is within the compound, we actually drove! haha.. CT allowed me to drive within the compound.

What a day of exercise. It feels good. I can imagine going back to Singapore and not exercising cos of the busyness of life back home. Oh well..

I cooked seafood gumbo with rice. So, had that for dinner. I call that Louisiana porridge because gumbo soup is a Southern kind of cuisine, esp from Louisiana.. It is a seafood soup with rice in it.. In the soup, there are spices, celery, tomato, shrimps and lady fingers. Cooked a lot so got lots of leftovers. Will eat that for one more meal.

Monday, August 15, 2005

back to usual

Posted by Dawn at Monday, August 15, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
Today, CT left the house at 7am. In the morning at about 9am, walked with Gek Teng to the Asian Market. The weather was hot even at 9 am already. Walked for about 20 mins to the market. It is almost 1km away. Gek Teng bought lemongrass while I was just looking around, but do not have anything to buy. We were perspiring while walking back. I dropped by at Macdonalds to get a ice tea as I was practically burning.

I have a piece of carpet outside my balcony door just to make my place look more homely with the carpet at the door. This afternoon while I was watching TV, I saw 2 cats coming by and lying on the carpet outside the door. So cute. I quickly took out my camera and got a picture of it. Here it is.

I wish to keep them as pets if I have a chance..maybe the next time when they come, I will give them some food. Hehe..bribery!

Now life back to normal here in Mobile and I really need to plan what to do if not I will be wasting my time here.

Told myself that I would exercise everyday and CT planned our night schedule: 7pm-8pm dinner, 8pm-9pm watch VCD, 9pm-10pm read book , then pray together and sleep.

So, that was what we did tonight and for the rest of the nights from now on. We have so many books that we needed to allocate time to read. Oh..after reading, there will also be a time of sharing to each other what we read so that we learn as well. CT is a bookworm and that is what he has been used to from young, according to his sisters. Ha.. But I feel yeah, it may seem boring and uninteresting, I feel reading is a very good habit and I can learn alot from reading.

When I watch "Who wants to be a Millionaire". The contestants who did well always say that they read widely..So, yeah..I have to learn that. SO, glad CT brought up the idea of reading every night before we sleep.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Stayed home spending time together

Posted by Dawn at Sunday, August 14, 2005 1 comments Links to this post
Today, went to church as usual in the morning at 9am. During the small group session just before service from 9-1030am, Danny's wife, Julie shared her testimony on her marriage life with Danny. For ths past few weeks, the topic of our discussion was on relationships with your spouse and Danny has been talking on the book, "5 Love languages" by Dr Gary Chapman. Last week, we were not around but heard that Danny shared his side of the story.So, this week, he asked his wife to share.

Me and CT felt it was timely for us to listen as we need to strengthen our foundation as a married couple before we wanted to have the little ones around. Julie was sharing on the seperation she had with Danny for 8 months after 17 years of marriage! Many people think that if you are married for 17 years, everything would have been settled and plainsailing from then on. I was amazed that it is not true and it took 17 years for things to explode as many issues in their marriage life has been swept under the carpet.

Anyway, to cut the story short, the result of their seperation was because of meeting their spouse love language. Danny thought that as long as he worked hard, earned enough money for the family, he would be showing his love for Julie. Julie thought that as long as she took care of their 4 kids for him, cooked, did all the housework, she would be doing her part. But both parties did not feel loved as it was a different love language they were speaking. Danny's love language was touch. But Julie shared that her family's culture was not to hug and kiss. So, it was diff for her to show Danny that. Julie's love language was quality time which means that she would be happy if Danny spent time with her.

I was tearing a bit when she shared her testimony as I felt her pain. After 17 years of marriage, they parted and Julie was telling us how devasted she was and went into a period of depression with her 4 kids. She said that when desperate, people usually do stupid things, but on the other hand, people may do smart things, which is to pray. So, Julie got down on her knees and talked to God. She told God that she has done everything right..but yet, it did not turn out the way it should. She asked God for wisdom to handle the matter and God revealed to her that she has been speaking words of condemnation to Danny.

So, Julie called Danny one day and apologized to him and slowly, Danny began to open up again and after 8 months, they were back together. Julie said that she would not trade anythug for this experience though it was painful as God has taught them a lot through this.

Everything happens for a reason and before we were born, God has already planned all this to happen. It reminded me of the train accident that my family went through. It may seem heartless for God to allow such a thing to happen..but I am reminded of the fact that the meaning of God, means that He is infinite- all knowing. So, " how can a mere finite human be sure that infinite wisdom would not tolerate certain short-range evils in order for a more long-range goods that we couldn't foresee?" ( The Case For Faith by Lee Strobel- Highly recommend this book for skeptics who face intellectual barriers) It means that the difference between God and us is great, so we cannot use our finite wisdom to question his infinite wisdom.

It is just like the dying of Jesus on the cross. Many people mentioned that if only Jesus did a miracle on the cross by performing some magic and got himself out of the cross, then people will believe Him.. That is why we cannot just use our short sightedness to view matters and question God.

So anyway, Julie's sharing has been very insightful and I am just reminded of how loving God is for allowing trials in our lives for us and everyone around us to learn something about God , draws us closer to Him and thus change our thinking and views for the better.

After small group, went down for service. Pastor was speaking on 5 ways to teach our kids. I feel it is another preparation for me and CT to learn something about parenting. :)

After that, we went to "Wintzell Oyster House" for lunch. The seafood gumbo soup is fabulous. It is voted #1 in Mobile..so we tried and compared. IT was very nice. Seafood gumbo is like a stew like soup with lady fingers, shrimps, crab meat etc. Very yummy. I ordered oysters for lunch- 2 raw, 2 fried and 2 with spinach and cheese, called "Rockefellar". CT ordered an oyster po boy. Po boy means like sandwich. So, he had a fried oyster sandwich.

After lunch, we went back and watched VCDs..played guitar together and just spent some quality time together. Oh, we washed our car together as well as there bird shit in the front on the car. We were quite proud of our car after washing it up as it was so clean.

Cooked beef stew with rice for dinner today. Something simple after a filling lunch.

After dinner, we cut up the watermelon together. CT was in the hard chopping department, while I was in the de-shelling department. He would chop the melon in slices while I would de-shell it! Took pictures of our 'struggle' with the evil watermelon using my new tripod!


Adjusting back to US time..

Posted by Dawn at Sunday, August 14, 2005 1 comments Links to this post
For the past few days, have been feeling rather tired in the afternoon and wake up at about 3 plus am. On Friday, I fell asleep on the sofa while watching TV and when CT came home, I had to wake up. Woke up feeling so dazed..only slept on the sofa for one hour.

On Saturday, we did not go anywhere far as I was still feeling tired. Woke up at 3am plus and could not sleep. CT woke up at 6am plus and I cooked noodles for breakfast as we were both hungry. Then, we went to play tennis at 7am as the sun rises quite early. During summer, the weather is quite humid but not as bad as Singapore. So, only perspire when exercise, if not, will not feel sticky and sweaty.

On Sat, only went to Asian Market to buy Chinese vegs, wanton noodles...dropped our stuff at home and went to the Flea Market. It is like pasar malam..selling cheap stuff but mostly second hand. I bought a huge watermelon and nice lady fingers (okra). The veggies and fruits sold in the flea market is fresh and only appears on sat mornings.

After that, went to Walmart for other grocery shopping. On the way there, there were girls walking in the middle of the road in their cheerleading uniform to ask for donations for their team. So strange..caught a picture of it!


We had been trying to eat healthier as I cook at home but on Sat afternoon, we broke our 'rule' by eating burger and fries. Hehe.. Went to "Steak & Shake" restaurant for burgers, fries, chilli beans, coleslaw and chocolate milkshake. Yum.. We felt guilty after eating that.

After lunch, I fell sleepy again and went to sleep till 6pm. When I woke up, CT started nagging at me for sleeping and not trying to stay awake to beat the jetlag. I told him that I couldnt help it..

Anyway, I cooked a quick dinner as I was feeling so dazed. Cooked fried rice with silver fish, egg and spring onions. I enjoyed it very much. It was my first time cooking rice with such ingredients. I actually bought the silver fish at Giant and brought it all the way from Singapore. Ha..desperate.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Back in Mobile

Posted by Dawn at Friday, August 12, 2005 0 comments Links to this post

Reached back in Mobile at 8am Thurs morning. The travelling time was longer as the transit time in Los Angeles was 5 hours. So, it was tiring waiting for time to pass. I really enjoy sitting Singapore Airlines plane straight from Singapore to US and vice versa as time seems short in the plane for once. I had fun watching movies and playing computer games. This time round, I was playing multiplayer game with CT. Played backgammon, checkers and battleship with him. I can actually play multiplayer games with anyone on the plane if they log on at the same time. So, it is quite cool.

I had a curry chicken pie and instant noodles for my supper on board the plane. The instant noodles which I requested was great as it is hot and soupy. Me and CT were slurping away while watching our movies. I watched a couple of comedy shows like " Guess Who" starring Ashton Kutcher, "Beauty Shop" starring Queen Latifah, a Romantic French movie and "XXX: The next Level". I do not enjoy shows which require a long of thinking esp when I am in the plane. Just needed some light hearted and fun to watch.

I prefer eating instant noodles to any of the meals they served as I just enjoy something hot and soupy..makes the body feels good. So, I am just satisfied with that. For dinner, I was served kung pao prawns and egg tofu with rice. For breakfast, there was duck noodles and got cavier with smoked salmon too.

When we reached back in Mobile, we quickly went to get our car at Avis. This time round, we had another car- Silver Chevrolet Malibu. It is a smaller one from all the cars we had but it was a nice change. It is a 2.2L car only. Drove back, unpacked our bags, bathed and check our emails. After that, went to Walmart to shop for groceries and then came back to cook lunch. Cooked mee hoon for lunch..added mushrooms, cabbage, pork and fried shallots. My first time cooking mee hoon...I added too much stuff in it. Ha..so much so that I felt I was not eating mee hoon at all but the other stuff.

After lunch, felt so tired..slept and woke up only at 5pm. Felt so dazed...Tired from all the travelling.

Prepared for dinner while CT was meddling with the computer as usual. Had our dinner at 7pm and then watched TV together...it was a funny movie called, "Hot Chick". I watched that before but I enjoyed it. SO, I watched it this time round together with CT, who has not watched it before. It is about a girl and a guy who changed bodies because of some spell in the earrings. After watching the movie, we played a HK VCD serial show..some kind of lawyer show. Decided to only watch one disc as it was late already.

Slept at about 10 plus pm. I was not tired at all but since CT went to bed, I forced myself to sleep together.

In Singapore, always so busy running errands and doing things...but when I am back now, suddenly felt as if I have nothing to do. Ha.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Happy Birthday Singapore!

Posted by Dawn at Tuesday, August 09, 2005 1 comments Links to this post
Ok, again I have not written for a long time. Have been so busy visiting my dad at the hospital, meeting up with friends and spending time with family members. One week is really too short but I guess it is better than nothing.

Last Friday, the nurse took my dad downstairs to see the surroundings and get some sunshine. He was parked facing a fountain just beside the food court. Dad was accompanied by 5 ladies! Wow..haha..We all joked how fortunate he was as he has the company of 5 ladies-the nurse, mum, my aunt, Reeda (my US friend) and I. Dad was very happy to finally see sunlight. He looked so thankful and happy. I excitedly took lots of pictures but cannot upload it up for you to see as I left my USB cable back at Mobile. So, I can only upload the pictures when I go back.

I will be leaving tomorrow at 4pm. I can see that my dad already misses me because when I mentioned to him that I would be leaving, he seems sad. Oh well, I wish I could stay but I know he is in good hands- God's hands. Friday was an eventful day for me as me and my mum took Reeda around Singapore. We first met at her place and brought her to Chinatown for breakfast at 730am. That is one of my favourite places to eat breakfast. I had my favourite Yong Tau Foo, peanut glutinous rice and chee kway. Yummy.

After breakfast, we took her down to the wet market to get a culture shock! haha.. Showed her the numerous kinds of fishes we have, eels, frogs, and the many diff types of vegs and fruits. I love Chinatown wet market as it is really an eye opener for tourists and locals! I managed to see the whole snout of the pig! Quite gross.

After that, we drove to East Coast Park and walked along the beach. Showed her the tennis centre as she loves to play tennis. She was so thankful to us for showing her the tennis centre. After that, we drove along the Changi Beach Road towards Changi Village and then went to my HDB flat in Punggol. Showed her my flat to let her see what govt housing is like. Showed her my wedding pictures as well. She was perspiring a lot. Guess not used to the weather yet.

Then, we went to Great World City for lunch since it is near the hospital and I am sure the aircon will cool her down. Had Jap food for lunch and made her try the octopus sashimi, sushi, chawanmushi (steam egg) and tempura. We get Jap food in Mobile but it is slightly different. It is not so authentic and fresh and the food served in Jap restaurants over there are mainly teppanyaki- the chef would perform for you and cook on the hot plate. So it is different.

We told Reeda that when you come to Great World, you should visit the toilet as it is a diff theme every storey. Ha..and we did! She said she would come back again with her husband, Cecil. Her husband's name is the same name of the street nearby where she stays..so it is quite easy for her to remember.

After lunch, we went to visit dad and that is when my aunt arrived and we went downstairs with dad. Mum pulled the oxygen tank along as she walked beside him with many people staring at us. Dad was on a wheelchair.


After the visiting hours, we went to this Chinese Emporium place opposite Chinatown Point. I felt like a tourist as it was my first time taking a car lift. We parked in the emporium and the car had to go into this lift to the carpark. Quite cool. The Emporium sells a lot of Chinese stuff like clothes, food, souvenirs etc. I like the place as it is quite interesting. After shopping, we sent Reeda back and then went home.

At night, went for cell group (bible study group) at Simei. There were a lot of people who attended as the group has expanded which was a good thing. All of them were so happy to see us and all commented how much weight CT has put on. Haha..There was a time for sharing and we talked about our stay in US and the accident. Then we prayed together as a group. After that, some of them brought food and we talked and ate. I was not feeling too well as I think I was pretty exhausted. Kept sneezing.

So, this whole week has been a lot of rush and staying out the whole day with no rest. It is tiring but yet we try to hang in there as we only have one week to visit and to spend our time with our family. Whenever I can, I try to visit dad twice a day ..to see more of him before I go back.

Not tonight as I need to go back early after dinner here at my mum's place to pack my bag. The new maid, Lin would be cooking dinner for us today. She is from Myanmar and is a Christian. Very hardworking and pleasant woman. She can speak English and her aunt works for our neighbout 2 doors away. So, it is good for her to know the area better with her aunt to show her around.

Yesterday was my 1-year wedding anniversary and my dad actually remembered and wished me. Felt touched. CT had to work yesterday, so we just had a family dinner at Long Beach Restaurant in ECP with my family, CT's family and Lin. Had black pepper, chilli crabs, crispy duck, fish, homemade beancurd, cereal prawns. Yummy. Enjoyed the food very much. That is something I missed very much. The food in Long Beach is very nice.

Alrighty, I guess I have typed quite alot. Will continue with my update when I go back to Mobile, AL when I have more time.

First wedding anniversary

Posted by Dawn at Tuesday, August 09, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
Celebrated my first wedding anniversary in Singapore with my loved ones. Since we only had one week in Singapore..whatever time we had, had to be spent with our family members. So, we had dinner together at Long Beach Seafood Centre in East Coast Park. CT paid for the dinner. My mum, bro, Pam, new maid, CT's mum and sisters all came. There were about 9 of us.

I bought for CT a new digital watch as his "Guess" watch spoilt during our swim in the river at Tennessee. The water went in and could not work after that. SO, he needed a less formal watch. So, got for him a Casio watch for only S$50...cheap cheap. In US, Casio watches costs at least US$70. The watch can even be set such that it can light up on its own when you turn your hand towards you to see the time. There is also world time and 5 alarms. I like Casio watches too as the battery lasts quite long.

Initially, I wanted a watch too for my anniversary present but I felt I had too many watches. So, I suddenly thought of what I wanted and called CT's colleague as CT left his hp at home. SO, I talked to CT and told him what I wanted..it was a camera tripod stand. A portable and light one. I wanted that to take nice night shots esp when I am in US. Need one to take during Christmas in US.

Initially, I thought it would costs at least S$100 but he told me that it was very cheap. His costs only about 38 bucks...and it is a better one.I loved it...and quickly used it to take of my park from my window in my flat. Here it is..

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Back Home

Posted by Dawn at Thursday, August 04, 2005 1 comments Links to this post
I have not been updating my blog so far as I have been really busy touring Tennessee before I went back to Mobile, Alabama and when I reached back to Mobile, I had to unpack and pack my luggage for my trip back to Singapore. So, basically, I have been rushing and packing.

Touched down at 520am this morning and it was the first time I felt that time passed so quickly on board the plane despite a 18 hours stretch of flight from Newark, New Jersey. We took Singapore Airlines back on Executive Economy class. It is the usual economy class with better facilities like extended leg rest in the seats, more compartments at the front pocket to put your specs,watch, magazines drinks etc, digital entertainment which allows you to pause,rewind,forward the movie as you please with 60 over movies ranging from latest shows, HK, Jap, Korean,Indian,Internatinal,classic films...also 80 over computer games and many many CDs to listen to. The first thing I did on the plane was to take out the entertainment guide and tick which show I want to watch. Sad to say, I only watched half of what I planned to. Managed to catch :"Monster-in-law", "House of Fury" (HK show), "Divergence" (HK show), "The Notebook", "Miss Congeniality 2". I missed watching HK shows..so that was why I chose some to watch in Cantonese! You are also able to learn a language on board the flight as they will give you exercises to do on the computer screen. You can learn French, German, Jap, Cantonese, Chinese, and many others. So, it is quite fun. At the back of the plane, there were also free flow of snacks for you to go behind and eat whenever you feel hungry. So, I took a hot chicken pie, fruits and water from behind. They even have instant noodles when you request.

So, few hours before the plane touched down, I was amazed at how time passes that I do not even have enough time to do much more on board. Ha..But hey, I am glad to be back and breathe the air back home! So, I was pretty excited and happy esp when I saw my mum, mum-in-law and Esther at the airport to receive me and CT.

My mum looks younger and slimmer. Glad she looks good! Went back to my Punggol flat to bathe while my mum and in law sat down and waited for us. Then, I drove to Bedok Market to have breakfast together. Wanted to grab whatever time I have here in Singapore to eat all that I can of the local food. So, we had pork porridge, lor mee, vegetarian bee hoon, char siew pao and soya bean drink. Yummy.

After that, I dropped CT at Bedok MRT where he needed to go Orchard for his training. Poor guy. Then dropped myself and mum-in-law at Simei where I went to Marianne's place to see my god-daughter, Phoebe and to spend time with her. Mum drove off for her Bible Study Fellowship at Pasir Ris.

Phoebe was asleep when I went over but shortly later, she woke up and started reading an animal book which she liked. She was smiling and laughing. So cute. When I first saw her, I was shocked as she grown so much and so tall. She looks more adorable to play with now. So we spent our time playing, bathing her and went out with Marianne, her maid, her parents and Phoebe to the new Cold Storage place at Tampines CC.

Called Reeda on her handphone which she passed the number to Esther. Reeda is this lady whom I know from church in Mobile, Alabama. She is a very nice lady who is in Singapore with her husband as her husband is conducting some seminar in Baptist Seminary. So, I called her to arrange a time with her to meet up and take her around. Anyway, think we arranging on fri to go out...I better start planning where to bring her.

Mum came to Simei to get me to go visit dad. The visiting hours are from 12-2pm and 5-830pm. So, we went to visit dad first as we were still full from breakfast. Dad is in ICA, which is a transition ward from ICU to the normal ward. He still needs assistance as he still relies on oxygen tank to breathe as his lungs are still weak.

When my dad first saw me, he cried as he was very happy. The nurse told me that he kept asking what time was it as he was waiting for me to come. I was so happy to see daddy too and see him always in high spirits and always so strong.

He can move his hands up and down now with more control but still has no feelings on his legs. His left hand is weaker so he cannot really lift that up. But all in all, he looks better and he still never fails to have hope and praise God. Heard from mum that yesterday, the nurse and mum took dad out for a "walk" downstairs on a wheelchair. He had to bring his oxygen tank along. Dad was so happy that he can finally see sunshine. Mum says that people tend to take things for granted as even sunshine and the trees can make my dad so happy now.

Today, the nurse said that he might be going down again. My aunt came during her lunch time to visit my dad. So glad to see my relative again. I feel that through this incident, our family are closer now as I remember my aunt calling me in US to check on my dad's status and even when my family went back to Singapore, she called me to ask how I have been. Really nice.

Anyway, while the nurses were cleaning my dad on bed, mum and I went down for lunch. Initially,we wanted to have lunch at Tiong Bahru but since dad may be out for "walk", we wanted to be there. So, we had lunch at the food court in the hospital. I had duck rice while my mum has duck noodles. yumyum.

When we went back up, we saw my bro's god-parents and dad's friends waiting outside. The nurses were still cleaning my dad up. Spent time talking outside. I was very tired already as my eyes kept blinking cos it was late at night over in US already.

Anyway, when the nurses left, they took turns to visit dad as only allow max 2 people per time. When everyone left, the nurses told us that he would not be going down anymore. But instead, he would be placed on this bed which can raise him up vertically, in a standing position to let him get used to breathing in a standing up position.

They took some time to transfer him and strapped him up on the bed and my dad was raised about 70-80 degrees up. They do not dare to raise him up to standing position yet..So, they let him be in the position for about 15 mins before letting him down. After that, mum and I left as me and mum were feeling very exhausted already. It was 4pm then.

Went to my mum's place to rest. Bro was back from school already. So I greeted him and chatted a while with him before I concussed on mum's bed. Only woke up when mum opened the door and asked me what time I am leaving for my mum-in-law's place. I suddenly got a shock and checked my watch for the time and saw a message on my hp. I realised CT messaged me and told me he was at Simei alr. Ha..I really slept like a log.

So, I rushed and told mum if she could send me there since I was late already. She then told me that I could take the car since she is not using it tonight. So, I drove to Simei and had dinner there. I missed my mum-in-law's cooking as well and it was nice to eat it again.

After dinner, we left together with CT's sis and mum to hospital to visit dad. Met my bro there and my uncle was there as well. Kor was massaging dad and doing some physio on him by making dad raise up his hands.. Spent time there till 830pm (end of visiting hours), then we left. Sent them back to Simei before going home to sleep. CT was sleeping soundly in the car. He was also very exhausted.

However, when we reached home, we sorted out our mails and did some unpacking before sleeping. What a day! So hectic.

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