Friday, December 31, 2010

Bangkok & Buddha (Part 1)

As promised, I finally managed to get the photo editor working so I could resize pics for posting. I really do wish Blogger would get a bulk uploader like Facebook has. I prefer being able to set the upload then go do something else, instead of waiting for every 5 photos to upload before choosing more. Oh well!! At least the resizing worked, so uploading them doesn't take as long as it used to (i.e., forever)

I've been doing a LOT of Bangkok flights over the last roster, actually 3 this month and I have one more midway through January. Considering these are 4 days trips that was pretty much my entire roster for Dec aside from 3 (yes three!) side trips to Jeddah in KSA. Which as you probably gathered from my Twitter are extremely busy, and often frustrating flights. Boarding takes FOREVER due to using buses, and with a plane the size of the one I fly on, well, you do the math!!

As always, the first afternoon was spent visiting the famous MBK mall to get DVDs and on this last trip I once again squeezed in a visit to the Jatujak weekend market. I picked up some cute dresses which I hope to list on Etsy, most of them are not my size but were too cute to pass up! One or two have tempted me enough to keep them, naughty me!!! I also got the cutest vintage clock, which I'll need to post about later on.

Anyway, on to the pictures!!!

Just before we started approach into Suvarnabhumi Airport. The river/s looked really cool from the air. I love taking photos when I can but I had to sneak these in the last minute rush to pack up before landing :P

As we flew (and arrived) on Christmas Day, the decorations were in full swing at the hotel and in the public areas nearby. The hotel had cool reindeer-shaped lights in the windows. This Christmas tree was near a shopping center, I actually took this photo on Boxing Day as I didn't have my camera the first time I saw it. (Bad blogger!)

On the second day of our trip (where we fly a shuttle service to Hong Kong and back) I spotted this cute display in the (BKK) airport. Basically it was a way for visitors to vote on which department they thought gave the best service. Again, like everything in Asia, it was totally cute...

On the third day of the trip (the one with the most free time) I went with a batchmate of mine to go visit the temples. Originally we wanted to see the Grand Palace as well, but we got quite tired and it was hot, so just decided to focus on Wat Pho and visit the Grand Palace on another trip. On the walk to the ferry pier we stopped so my friend could buy some street food. I'm always too chicken to try street food (except for that one time in Korea) but she is pretty brave with it, so off she went.

These leaf-wrapped things were some kind of cooked potato snack, I'm not sure what they were called, but she said they tasted pretty good. We continued on to the pier, stopping along the way at a cute stall to buy cheap shoes (as you do) and nearly got onto the wrong pier where men were selling time on private boats. We politely declined and found the corrcet pier for the public ferry. The tourist boat was about 150baht but the public boat was only 14baht for the trip. Of course we chose the public boat!!! It was just as good as (if a bt more crowded than) the tourist boat.

How cute are these boats? They look like little houses on the water. I eventually figured out that these house-type boats are the shuttle boats for different high-end hotels along the river. Cute, and easily identifiable.

These houses perched on the water remind me of Venice. Okay, so a not-quite-so-pretty version, but still... it's very much like Venice :P

At first we thought this white building was a fancy hotel, but on closer inspection I think it was actually very posh apartments. Either way, I really like the detail on the facade. The round windows are very church-like.

After we got off the boat, to get to the temple you pass through a small market area. My companion decided she wanted to buy some fruit. This lady was selling mangosteen and some other fruit we couldn't identify. She told us the name but we still had no idea! Mangosteen is meant to be very good for immunity and things like arthritis; my mum used to order the juice from o/s before it became known in Australia. She said it really helped with joint pain and so forth. (Mangosteen in the back, weird red fruit is the one I'm holding that we didn't know the name of)

We just enjoyed walking around the little market, seeing all the sights and smelling the food. Again, the street food smelled amazing, but was just sitting out in the open (along with several flies) so we decided not to chance it this time, and I took this picture instead. Mmm, hungry just thinking about it though.

The not-so-pleasant section was where the dried (dryING) fish were, it was very stinky but I stopped to take a picture. Something about the orderly rows of fish with their silver scales appealed to my camera eye :P I don't know if it was 170baht per fish (which seemed kind of expensive) or maybe it was the price per pound/kilo.

After a slight delay getting a) lost and b) having some shady guys try to trick us into a "side tour" (I knew better and my intuition told me they were up to something- a local later confirmed my suspicion and said it was good we did not go with them) we finally found the entrance to Wat Pho, otherwise known as the Temple of the Reclining Buddha!

It wasn't as busy as I had expected, so we didn't really have to line up for very long, although by the time we got to the actual Buddha there was a lot of people, the line still moved very quickly and it was only the work of a minute to take off our shoes. My travelling buddy was wearing a strappy top so of course had to 'rent' the requisite scarf/sarong to put over her shoulders. Funny how the men can wear whatever they want!!!

Entrance fee was 50baht (about 5-7 UAE dirhams or not even 2 Australian dollars) which compared to the Grand palace is very cheap. I suppose this temple is a lot smaller and thus requires less upkeep.

We quickly looked around the main courtyards and the outer structures, as it was starting to get quite hot and we wanted to see the actual Buddha. While walking around the grounds we saw a small procession with a casket, my buddy wondered if anyone was actually inside or was it a ceremonial casket. We noticed ropes tied the lid on so guessed it must have been an actual funeral. Weird that while they were mourning, all these tourists were wandering around snapping photos of the temple. No one took any photos of the funeral though, which I was relieved to notice.

I really liked all the colours and of course the golden accents on everything. Some of the spires reminded me more of Indian/Hindu temples and reading the poster near the entrance, apparently this style of temple is Thai-Chinese. You learn something new every day!

I'll continue on with some more photos next time, to keep the post from getting too long. Hope you enjoyed this first part!! :)

And Happy New Year to all, hope 2011 is a great year. Do you have any resolutions??

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Sneak Peek...

Hello again all!

I know I've been very lazy with updating the blog lately, well hopefully in the next week or two I can fix that. I wanted to post about Bangkok yesterday but my photo editing program wasn't wanting to co-operate. In the meantime here's a couple of photos from my latest Bangkok trip.

Today I'm off on a quick turnaround flight to Saudi Arabia. Hopefully things go well and we get back on time (just after midnight) in which case I'll try again to upload the Bangkok photos. I also have more photos from Seoul and some from around Dubai that I want to share with you.

Hope everyone had a great Christmas wherever you were, and if I don't post before, Happy New Year!!

Lucky me has the rest of the 31st & 1st January off. First time in a few years, I'll be celebrating the new year with my friends. Yay!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Blog from Bangkok

Check out this pimped-up tuk-tuk!

Was interesting trip so far. Definitely one for a future post, haha

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Test Posting From New Phone

Hey all! Just testing out if phone blogging is working. So many interesting things to be seen on the road :)

Monday, December 13, 2010

Do the Polka

Okay, so I'm a sucker for polka dots. One of my favourite dresses as a kid was a white summer dress with rainbow polka dots and a big bow on the back. I've always like a classic black and white polka dot print, but something about red with white dots also speaks to me. Maybe it's a throwback to 'Pretty Woman'- I always liked that outfit which Julia wears to the polo match.

Here's a couple more dress patterns from Etsy. How cute are they!

(Top: Cottage Lane Treasures and Bottom: The Craft Portal on Etsy)

Monday, December 6, 2010

Parisian Pink

Yet another dress I'd love to have. I can just imagine this with a white cardigan, for a day of strolling Paris, seeing the Louvre, sitting in a cafe watching passers-by and taking pictures near the Eiffel Tower.

(Pattern from Kallie Designs)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Snapshot from Toronto

Couldn't resist the combination of colours in this scene. Coming from a country where we don't really get colour-changing leaves, I was pretty excited. More pictures to come from the trip to Niagara Falls!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

A Little Bit Audrey

Further to my pattern-browsing adventures, I saw this cute pattern & just had to share. I'm not really a fan of plaids, but this outfit is quite cute.

Do you think the 'model' looks a lot like Audrey Hepburn?

(Pattern from Bluette COurt)

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Flight Pattern

One lazy night at home, I was browsing on Etsy and got to looking through all the listings of vintage sewing patterns. I've always liked the artwork on the pattern envelopes, especially on vintage patterns.

I remember as a little girl when my mum would take me to the sewing store. She'd put me on a seat at the pattern book table and I'd happily look through all of the pictures of the clothes, while she went to buy the things she needed. I'm actually quite surprised then that at that time, I had no desire whatsoever to actually sew. At that age I was more interested in a) playing in the sandpit with my trucks and Legos, and b) in drawing & painting then sewing.

When I was in high school, I preferred Edwardian and 1940's styles to anything later, though a nice full skirt would ocassionally get my attention. Of course, since becoming a flight attendant - and researching the history of my profession- I've fallen in love with the late 50's/early 60's fitted pencil skirt/dress style.

Here's a few patterns that I like from Etsy. They could easily be used to make an outfit for a costume party or Halloween if you wanted to go as a traditional "stewardess", or even for a 60's/"Mad Men" themed party.

This blue dress on the right would be perfect with a jaunty hat.
(From RRebelGirl)

(Bluette Court)


(Studio G Patterns)

(Wildrose Primitives)

Finally, this cute Misses Pattern from Historically Patterns.

Oh, now if only I could sew!!

(I'm hoping to learn at some point, what with the days off we get in Dubai- especially in the reserve months)

Friday, November 19, 2010

Gym Time...!

I admit it. I've been really slack in the gym department over the last few months. It's quite shameful really, considering that the apartment building I live in has a gym and pool on the premises. There's really no excuse!!

Back in October, I'd decided to get my act together and work out regularly. I'd go to the gym, even if for 40 minutes. Then after a particularly tiring trip, I spent the next three days sleeping during the day and awake all night, and any gym routine went out of the window.

Over the last two weeks, I've been pretty good. I've been going to the gym at least every second day and doing about 20 minutes on the cross trainer and 10-20 minutes on the rowing machine. I'd love to do some weights and I really need to get some toning in my abs but I have no idea how! Not being a gym bunny in any respect, I always feel like a total loser trying to use the exercise machines aside from what I already use.

I also have problems with motivation. I have my ipod and I work out to music or podcasts, but I'd love to find some other ways of keeping motivated in the gym. If you have any suggestions or advice to stop me falling off the wagon again, please leave a comment!!!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


So today it's been 5 months since I arrived in Dubai. It's gone really fast, and I can't believe how quickly I started referring to my flat as "home". Of course, Australia will always be HOME home, but I guess for ease I might as well have 'Home 1' and 'Home 2'. While here I do want to learn more about this country and the Emirati people. One awesome wish of mine is to make friends with a local girl my own age. I know this is probably very unlikely, but you just never know. I've joined a few social groups online which organise events for ladies only, so maybe I might just make a new local friend here.

Here's the first photo ever of me in Dubai. I took this in the car on the way from the airport to my apartment building. How tired/shellshocked do I look! Haha...

On arrival I was extremely tired (only slept 3 hours of the 12 hour flight, and had been awake all night for days before leaving) and the driving scared me. (I'm used to it now but still ALWAYS wear my seatbelt in cars/buses) I snapped this photo right before we got onto Sheikh Zayed Road.

Despite my jetlag, I was still pretty excited to get my first glimpse of Burj Khalifa. Nothing like a giant wonder of architecture to wake you up from a jetlag-induced coma.

After spending the eary hours of the day unpacking & getting settled in, I ventured outside to find a store to purchase some food & bottle water. After dropping this off in the flat, I made my way to the Metro station (luckily for me, right near my building)

bought a Nol card and visited my first shopping mall, Mall of the Emirates. There I bought a few things for the apartment and a mobile phone. Later, some of my new colleagues said they didn't go outside until their flatmates got home and were amazed I was brave enough to do it. Guess I'm not such a chicken after all... :P

Monday, November 8, 2010


* I need to make a post about my Sydney trip. It was really fun. And, I got to see my sister for the first time since moving overseas =)

* Seoul flight was really busy. But the layover was good.

* My camera cable broke and my card reader that I got from ebay doesn't read Olympus cards like the prescription said. So I need to get both of those.

* I got my tax refund, yay!!! I can stop worrying about money so much!!!

* Had to say bye bye to my Aussie number :( Will get a prepaid next time I'm in Sydney

* Still waiting to hear back from doctors

Posts to come as soon as I can get the photos up =)

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Coming Home

Well, to Dubai-Home.

I took these photos yesterday morning on the way home from the airport. Everyone else on the bus was snoozing away, but I love the early morning light so I always stay awake to watch the city light up.

Burj Khalifa. There was actually a really cool reflection/flare of light but the camera couldn't capture it properly. I really need to get a 'real' camera. Maybe the tiny Sony with the changeable lenses. (Please Santa?) :P

Looking towards Sheikh Zayed Road. I live in one of those buildings.

Is strange but I think of Dubai as a home, pretty good after four months.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Future is in Dubai

This is a post for Allemalice. She and I were talking on Twitter about how some buildings look like the belong in Star Trek. Of course, the world centre for skyscapers is now Dubai and while other cities have futuristic buildings, a high proportion of those in Dubai fit into this category.

So, here you go Alle, some crazy sci-fi buildings in Dubai.

Address Hotel, Downtown Burj Dubai

The next two are of the 'Fashion Avenue' clothing & accessories section of the Dubai Mall

Address Hotel in the daytime

Metro Stations which look like alien pods or something from 'Coccoon' :P

Dubai from the air. It is a futuristic-looking city, no?? Of course with the addition of the Burj Khalifa it looks even cooler...

Hope you enjoyed looking at these! I'll be keeping my eye out for more unusual-looking buildings on my travels.

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