Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Happy Chinese Niu(牛) Year

Happy Chinese New Year peeps:)

It's the very first time for me to celebrate CNY away from home..no angpao, no bakgua, no yeesang, no almond cookies...hai..not even one day of holiday for this auspicious day.
Oh wells..but we had a GREAT reunion dinners with sumptuous meals!!
Saturday--with IMU seniors+SUPER SENIORS+SUPER SUPER SENIORS who already graduated and working as registrars! 3 tables of ex-Imu-nians @ Taiwu restaurant..Big group of us. But was really angry with them, they made us waited 1 and a half hour for their GRAND ARRIVAL..sigh..They didnt inform us that they changed the time! i didnt take pics with them tho. Only 4 of us, 3rd year who went..(Siti, Angie, Steph, Lily)..so hv to behave a bit in front of seniors, right?!
Lotus+Pork+Herbal soup..
(p/s to Steph's daddy: Steph asked me to put this pic up here so that you could see her very 1st soup in Manchester after 5 months here!!)

We had a 10 course dinner..ranging from king prawns, squid, braised pork, beef, taufu...
Steamed salty chicken, Thai cooked fish, vege, lamb and sweet n sour pork....fuyoh...1kg gained from this meal...

Sun--with church friends(student fellowship) @ Taipan restaurant...we waited for 2 hours for our food to be served. So many Chinese in Manchester ler...aiyoyoyoyo!!

It's a must to sit in a round table for reunion dinner right??!
Bored...waiting for our fOood!
So...snap snap snap time lor......smile:)

Finally...our food..caME! Just have a look at what we had...Again, it's a 9 course dinner! My parents were saying i'm eating much better food than they do back home..muakakka!

Tofu, lamb, DUCK, chicken

noodle + Rice with scallop, prawns and squid!

belacan Kangkung!!! Slurp!

Seafood!! Scallops, KING prawns, LOBSTER and not to forget Fish ..Another kg gained after this meal..now u tell me, how to loose weight?! haih...haih..haih..

Yam Seng!!

I killed the chicken:P


Steph joined us for dinner too:)

Guess wat is this?! (it's fish head bone..am amazed how Steph ate the head till so clean!)

Student Fellowship of MCCC:) My dear family in Manchester

Thanks to Julian, for blessing me with this tiny little vacuumed bakgua, all the way from Singapore!!

at least, get to eat...bakgua on CNY:)

Though it's CNY, we still have to go in hospital early morning, for case presentation:( but was cancelled in the end because only 2 students turned up! sigh...

and it's the 1st day of my attachment. Was given 'thyroid swelling' as my topic for this attachment.

Good start though, my tutor let me scrubbed-in and assisted him in a complete thyroidectomy today! Woohoo, it's my very first time and it's really exciting.. looking forward for more such opportunity throughout this 1 month attachment:)

wasSup Doc: In God's service, our greatest ability is our availability...I need to be ready all the time for this new journey He has planned for me:)

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

It's all about BELGIUM!

This post is finally..DONE:) Whee~~ In total, i spent 2 days to make sure i dun miss out anything...there you go, as promised...ALL ABOUT my BELGIUM trip:)

FIRSTLY, BIG BIG BIG thanks to our tour guide...Kenneth who has made this trip possible, fun and at a reasonable price! He actually did research before the whole trip, read up where to visit, what to eat and how to travel around, so that we spent little but got the most out of it! Efficient..whereas the group members..JUST FOLLOW:P

Kenneth, our tour guide..this was how we covered the whole Belgium:) with the tiny little book!

So you guys ready for this exciting journey with Angie to Belgium?
Sit back and enjoy...Ready?Get set...GoooooOooo.....!!!
de DRAMA Before departure to Belgium: Our flight was at 8.05am. Reached airport at 630am after a one hour bus ride.Phew, still make it ontime to check in and chill. Clock stoke 730am, yup, it's time to board. Walked happily to the security check up and guess what, Kenneth and my hand luggage were TOO BIG!?!?! The staff there actually asked you to show on the spot whether your bag can fit into the allocated slot! wahlau..only my wheels sticking out and i failed to go thru. Watch showed 745am! Kancheong..RAN LIKE MAD to the Ryanair counter to try to check in. From 1st floor, 2 ground floor. NOBODY in sight. All counters closed dy. Then spotted a random lady. BEGged her to do smth for us. THANK GOD, she managed to contact the air stewardess, though the luggage bag counter was already closed, we still managed to squeeze our bags in..and had to pay 20 quid each! Nvm, gate was about to close, and we haven't went thru the security check. Luckily met nice ppl and let us cut queue..from there to the on board gate was another 10 mins by running! Breathless by the time we reached there..and we were the LAST to go on board. WE MADE IT...by God's grace..really:) and it's already 810am!
Bonjour de Belgie:)
weather forecast @ Belgium: -7 degree celcius...brrrr! COLD~~
Everyday was as though staying in a fridge...really cold and we didnt expect it.
We have to wear 5 layers everytime we went out..still not enough lor..
Let's kicked off my journey with the arrays of Belgie Chocs of different sizes and colors!
No doubt, they produce the best Chocs! It was said that temptations for chocs prevails right up until leaving the country!
Top Chocolatier- Brussel's born Pierre Marcolini. SUPER ex but it's the BEST chocs seller in the whole of Belgium!
Will tell you bout the story of Menneken Pis later k, but it's really smth significant in Brussels. Even chocs wrapper are of him:)Choc..BALL:)Ahh..glinting light brown, dark brown and white coated chocs..smells good:)Godiva chocs:) We bought this at a factory outlet store. Got it half price!(40 euros to 20 euros only!) Each of us got to eat one row..heavenly yum!the STARs and the Chocs:)Steph,handling the chos we bought with care!!Ly and our Chocs..precious!
Angie and pralines( such as fresh chocs filled in tiny bar form) THIS is real good..

Apart from chocs..FRENCH FRIES hail from Belgium toO!
Fries here are made from Belgian-grown bintje potatoes. Hand cut about 1cm think- any smaller and they absorb too much oil and burn- they're cooked first at a lower temperature the n again at a higher temperature to become crispy on the outside while remaining soft inside. Dozens of sauce offered but the best still go with mayo..that's SO SINFUL:) but thumbs up for the fries!
The best shop so far selling fries only!

Throughout our trip, we have been eating loads of FRIES!

told yea..tak habis-habis:) We're like to the locals, having fries as their fav snacks!

and food was AWESOME..
having SEAFOOD as the highlight
but Mussels being omnipresent in Brussels coz it's the national dish! They're traditionally cooked in white wine!
See the fresh cooked mussels..Main dish for a person portion.
Paella(My fav!!) It's Spanish dish. Rice with LOTS of seafood of different varieties.

cold plate with fresh Seafood again....!!Bought this in the Christmas market. erm..pork+mushroom+potatoes..nice for a chill weather:) Escargot...
Mer Du Nord serves fresh-from-ocean oysters at a cheaper price!
see how BIG the oysters were...Kenneth's tongue!:P
Amazed by the size:P We each had 6 for ourselves..
yup, we were standing, eating outside in the cold, with our oysters+a cup of wine..ahh, niceE. But guess we drank the wine toO fast, all of us were kinda tipsy after that.. and it's difficult to find McD or KFC in Belgium, because they have their very own fast food chain, called Quick! Yeap, we tried it since it's smth special there! not bad:)
Belgium's stellar range of brews...

Belium waffles..
A large, light rectangle with 20 'squares', is traditionally buttered and sprinkled only with icing sugar. But they also consume it with whipped cream, chocs or other elaborate toppings like fruits. it's a MUST EAT everyday:) We even have cravings when we woke up early morning! IMAGINE, how goOd it was...salivating:P

and biscuits..of premium quality toO. Just 2 pieces of these biscuits would cost u 5 euros!
and they're packed in such nice boxes...fuyoh!
Lace is traditionally craft in Belgium. See the delicate work:)
me wanted to buy this lacey umbrella...i want i wan!:(
k k, enough of wat's good in Belgium..
let's move on...to the few cities we covered in Belgium.
The Grand Place, Brussel's heart beats on this main square:) Ringed by gold-trimmed, gabled houses built by merchant guilds, and flanked by the Gothic Town Hall..Europe's most magnificent!Night View:)Us, At Grand Place on New Year's Eve to see fireworks but we went to the WRONG venue, it's actually BEHIND Grand Place..haih..Bat-women at Brussel!The Menneken Pis, the legendary figure and hero which glory has widely spread abroad. Some say he was extinguishing a fire set up by the enemy, in his manners and eventually saved the whole city; others say he was lost in the crowd during one festivities, and after 5 days, he was found doing what the little man was doing:) He has been there since 1619 and been stolen a few times! Brussel's treasure.that's why it's gated!Scenic Park at Brussel..Us, at Christmas Market in Belgium.This shopping gallery, opened in 1847, Europe's first-ever covered shopping gallery.
Palais Royal, Belgium's royal family residence!
Atomium..Bom bom bom.
this bizarre stainless steel structure was built for the 1958 World fair and represents an iron molecule magnified 165 billion times. Its nine balls linked by columns are accessed by series of steep metal steps!! Still standing strong there:)Vroom vroom..the comic Tintin comes from here..

BruggeBelfort, rising 87m above the main square. It's the symbol of Bruggesee the winding stairs..it's 366 steps to walk up Belfort!!And along these steps, you will past by treasury, triumphal bell and a 47 bell, manually operated carillion which still regularly chimes across the city.
the breath-taking view from the TOP of Belfort..phew..SOB! the nice scenery in Brugge..It seems so picturesque yea..fake but still it's REAL:)Angie loves Brugge!Pose and more Poses...see the reflections on the still water..(water was frozen):PTadaaa....weird trees found:)how i wish i could fit into this mailbox n send myself home:)YipEee...FINALLY, the jumping pose:)
Brugge is so beautiful!

Antwerp- the City of Romance:)
Over 70% of the world's rough diamonds are traded in here. And it's the home for 4 diamond exchanges and 1500 diamond companies! Bling bling along the streets....i need my shades:P

Stone-cutting @ Diamondland

Since we hv no money to BUY, we can go there n SEE only:( Diamonds are women's best friend~
eh, Ly hinting nih..*Eugene, u kno wat to do larr:P*
Ly*Angie infront of the Cathedral of Our Lady..Belgium's largest and most Gothic cathedral(123m high)

random statue in Antwerp:P
Group Pic:)
There is a legend behind this statue..but am not sure, but u can see the hero holding a hand right??:P-->Hands in the air= Antwerp:)This shopping gallery is so..GOLD! Seems to b an EXPENSIVE place to be:)


final destination: Ghent
Step-gabled buildings along the river, the beauty in Ghent*_*
We went there on new year day..that's why the place is kinda quiet. and all we could do is just snap pictures coz most shops are closed..but we were so tired after that because we had to WALK 2.2km from the train station to the city. So to and fro, we walked 4.4km, excluding the walk around the city itself..huh! BURNt lots of calories..i think:)

our HOTEL..
we were so excited to know that we're staying in a SUITE! 4 stars kay..hehe
our BEDroomsand our view from 26th floor!! the whole of Brussel..
not to forget to mention our daily GAMEs after day visit.
And below are some pics..punishments for being loser:P
(Hair gel + Eye-liner)
Angie n 'de' mole:P
Kenneth the 'black' nose raindeer!
Stephie...+shitt??!?!? meow:)

Kee Fong, the Pirate+Lost in LOVE??!?

de DRAMA after Belgium trip: I developed some rashes attack during the last 2 days in Brussel. Upon my arrival to Manchester, it was still there. Thought it was just normal rashes and would go away after i apply calamine lotion, but it got worst and i couldnt stand it anymore. Shivering on the bed and the itch was killer.. So on that night itself, there was a NEED for me to go to the emergency walk in clinic in MRI to see a dr. Still hv no idea wat i was allergy to but..it's no longer there after taking some drug prescribed to me:) Thank God..phew..

That's the end of my trip to Belgium.

An exciting one i must say, with good companies and shared lots of joy n laughter.

exams over. CNY coming..till then:)

cheerios(learned this new adios from Geoff)

wasSup Doc: Merci..Thank you in French:) Smth i learned from the trip..! But i must THANK God throughout this trip, He has blessed us ABUNDANTLY, from our nearly missed flight, to hop onto the WRONG train and still manage to reach our destinations and not to forget, being the LAST few visitors allowed to visit Belfort(in Brugge) b4 they shut the door, when the queue behind us was still SOOOoo long! Unexpected blessings only from Him...