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Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Run for Your Lives Singapore

Date: 25.10.2014



There are plenty of events for halloween.  But most of the events, we pay to scare the shit out of ourselves.  Also these events doesn't permit visitors to dress up.  Not sure how you guys feel but to me, fun factor is decreased..

My sister and I signed up for "Run for Your Lives".  Not too sure of the exact fees as my sister signed up and paid for me 2 months ago, it's about S$60.

Participants were given 2 role options - Zombie or Survivor.
Survivors need to run for their lives on a 5km trail with obstacles and zombies.
Zombies will run after the survivors for their blood lolxxx...
You may check out their web-page www.runforyourlives.asia/sg/

Needless to say, we played zombies, heeheeehee......


WARNING
Bloody photos ahead, not for weak hearts!

The event was held at West Coast Park from 12pm.  Grateful that my hubby drove me there else I had to go through another agony on public transport, from Tampines you know!

Participants were given different time slots, so the crowd was very much in good control.

It was another scorching hot afternoon at 2pm.

After registration, we headed into "Transformation Centre" ie. makeup booth.
I wore old clothes for them to rip and snap, follow by make-up.

My eye bags were further enhanced >.<

I looked like beggar more than a zombie, wtf...

Glued on cotton on my neck to create a wound.

Bottles of "blood"....

Other "completed" zombies in the tent.

"Blood booth" where zombies got their final "touch up".
My sis actually laid down and let them splitter on her -____-|||

There, bloody hell.

Behold, my beautiful sister...

Bloody selfie.

One more.
I realised that I still need fake lashes even being a zombie.  I looked so "blank" lolxx..

I later act cute by putting on 2 eye ball hair clips on my head.

Spotted cool couple.

After being fully transformed from human to zombie, we gathered with the others and were lead to a Zombie Zone.

We zombies were "confined" into one area, waiting for survivors to run through the zone.
The above were one batch of survivors ready to dash into the Zombie Zone.

The survivor runners were very rough, they pushed, I nearly fell and I got beaten too.
After the first batch, I decided to just stand at one side to watch instead.  A game is just a game, not worth injuring myself right?

My sis who was stronger in build managed to get 3 blood strips.

There was a really funny episode -

I saw this girl, who seemed a slow runner, so I "target" her.  She was hugging her only "blood strip" to her chest.  To be more specific, she kiap it between her breasts liao -____-|||  Running towards my direction, she was screaming " No No No No No No....".  She was a easy prey, but she was so comical and funny that I just had to let her go laughing my ass off, waaahaahaaahaaa....  I laughed so hard that I had to squat down else I'll lost my balance lolxx..... 

The survivors came in by batches, so we had plenty of free time to slack around.

"Confined" zombies gotten really restless....
The organizer should just set us free to run after the survivors' blood.

We collected our race packs after that.

The race pack consist of 2 T-shirts, medal, 2 travel size Garnier skincare and mineral water (drink finish liao).

Close-up of the "infected" medal.

Front and back views of the T-shirts.

If the organizer change the zombie rules, I may join again.  If I join again, I will wear my fake lashes.



Friday, 24 October 2014

海底捞 Hai Di Lao Hot Pot at 313 Orchard

Date of visit: 09.09.2014



I had posted about  海底捞 Hai Di Lao Hot Pot at Clarke Quay last year.  The blog post hits over 42K views (peanuts to those famous bloggers, big deal to me, heehee...) and it's still running on till today!   Curious?  Click HERE.

I have been eating around, but so far I didn't find another better steamboat place (of similar pricing) other than Hai Di Lao.

Their unique soup bases had casted a spell on our taste buds, fresh and good quality of meat/ingredients had turned us into spoiled brats with.  You can't blame me for being so picky on food >.<   Not forgetting the 6 star standard service which was very difficult for other competitors to mimic.

Initially was thrilled when we know that Hai Di Lao was opening another branch at 313 Orchard.  But on second thoughts, we were not very sure if they could maintain that extreme high standard.  That's for us to find out ourselves....

First visit to 海底捞 Hai Di Lao at 313 Orchard on a weekday noon...

海底捞 Hai Di Lao Hot Pot at 313 Orchard
That's the reception counter, and the lady behind it was doing ironing.  You hear me right.  She was ironing what looked like to me children's curtains for their children's indoor playground.  She greeted us politely and told us to sit on those red stools for a short wait.  She continued to concentrate on her ironing.

My children happily went to grab the pop corns, but were disappointed with a down graded type.  There were glasses but no drinks available at the waiting area.  I requested for plain water from one of the serving staff, it never came.  So I already know, that royalty service at Clarke Quay did not make it at their new branch >.<

Similarly, 313 Orchard also have a playroom for children and a manicure room providing free manicure for female customers.

Posh interior with most of the tables being occupied.

Some tanks in low stock.

We ordered what we knew was good -

Free flow beverage S$3/pax
They have a few to chose from, we had soya milk which comes with a jar of syrup for us to add at our own preference.

Tomato and Sichuan Spicy duo soup base S$16

Self-service bar counter S$2/pax.
Mix your own dip sauce with various seasonings/condiments.  There are assorted fruits, bean curd pudding, pumpkin porridge and other desserts which may change from time to time.  Did not take any pic, but the concept is the same as it's branch at Clarke Quay.

Mutton S$16.00

Assorted meat paste S$22.00

Select Beef S$26.00

Chilled Tofu S$6.00

Assorted Veg Combi 开心农场 S$9.00 (half portion)

Beef Balls (that pees) 撒尿牛丸 S$14.00

Black Pork S$12.00

U.S. Beef Slices S$18.00

Seafood Combi S$14.00 (half portion)

Birthday Fruit Platter
Complimentary from the restaurant, it was hubby's birthday.


We also ordered 2 servings of kungfu noodles at S$3.00 each.  Total bill with GST and service charge was S$210.70 for the 4 of us.

Food quality maintained freaking yummy.  Just that there's a drastic drop in service compared to their pioneer outlet at Clarke Quay.  No server came to refill drinks for us nor peel the prawns for me;  totally missed all the pampering we had at Clarke Quay T___T  From what I observe they are slightly short handed which maybe one of the reason. Expanding food business is rather challenging in Singapore I would say.

Even at it's worst, a few weeks of advance booking has to be made to get a table for weekend dinners.



海底捞 Hai Di Lao Hot Pot
313 Orchard Road
#04-23/24
Tel: 6835 7337




Thursday, 16 October 2014

Complete Guide to Singapore Botanic Gardens( Part 1)

Dates of visit: 21 Aug, 2 Sep, 12 Oct 2014


PROLOGUE


Maybe I did go to Singapore Botanic Gardens (SBG) with my parents when I was child, don't have much impression of it any more.  Had wanted to visit but hubby always told me got nothing to see, it's just a boring garden blah blah blah....  An opportunity came when I was invited to Daylong Sunscreens Launch event held in the garden.  After the event, I spend the whole day in this garden and found that....

HE BLUFFED ME

Now, I realized that he sort of "hates" tourist attractions due to scope of work.  He brought guests to SBG repeatedly, but what he saw is always the entrance and car park.  He did not explore but insisted that's nothing to see.

Have something or nothing to see depends on how you look at it and how you feel about it.  Others may find it boring but people like me is totally fascinated with SBG.

Human is like a tree in a way.   Each has a trunk and a green canopy, but each looks different.  They have different leaves, bears different flowers and fruits; they stretches out to the sun and rain in a different manner.  Whereas for human, we drive towards our dreams, reaching out for our goals in differently.

I found beauty in these differences although I have very minimal knowledge on plants.

SBG is also a habitat of animals.   Some were timid peeking around, some walked across my path like bosses.  I had encounter lizards from as tiny as 5 inches to larger 1 meter ones.  Swans, ducks, different species of birds, large fishes swimming freely in the ponds and many squirrels!  However, I did not see any monkeys during my visits.  These "encounters" are some how different from looking at caged animals in the zoo.  It's thrilling, it's exciting and it's sometimes unexpected.  It's a shiok feel of FREEDOM!!

All these non-professional photos that you will be seeing are taking during a few visits.  During one of the visits, I bumped into a young lady, Mariam from France.


Some of the photos that you see me in it were taken by her and a few were taken by Tiffany Yong.

Compiling and re-arranging thousands of photos together so that it makes sense to readers (and myself) was quite a challenge. May or may not be appreciated, able to compose an almost complete guide on Singapore Botanic Gardens gave me a great sense of satisfaction.

I feed my body with food
and
I feed my soul with nature's green


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Singapore Botanic Gardens
1 Cluny Road
Singapore 259569
Opening hours 5am - 12am


This vintage English style garden of 74 hectare was found in 1859.   Beautifully baptized by history, SBG it's very different from Gardens By The Bay.
For larger map click HERE

As you may seen from the above map, SBG spreads it's area in a longish manner, it's divided into 3 sections - 

Tanglin Core, Central Core and Bukit Timah Core.

Within each core, there are various attractions to explore, even little areas not high-light on the map can be surprisingly stunning too.  Before visiting, I never know there so much in SBG.  This garden is awesome, really.

I always enter from Bukit Timah Gate, so will start my pictures rolling from Bukit Timah Core (see from the right side of the map).
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Bukit Timah Core -

Bukit Timah Core the is smallest section compare to the other 2 cores.   Next to the MRT station, this section is easily accessible to most visitors.  It's very lively during weekends, with both local and foreign picnickers.  Personally, I prefer the tranquility state on weekdays.

Major attractions were:
* Trellis Garden
* Eco-Garden and Eco-Lake
* Foliage Garden
* Jacob Ballas Children's Garden

Mini attractions were:
* Bougainvilleas & Bamboo collection
* Fruit and Nut Trees collection


Trellis Garden
Trellis Garden showcases climber plants on many such triangular structures.

Sandpaper Vine
Sandpaper Vine

Eco-Garden

Prominent landmark of Eco-Garden.
Love & Peace Flower by Madam Anna Tzarev

Kindergarden children were here for excursion ^.^

Cute shelter.

We may not have Snow Lotus (冰山雪莲), but we have white hibiscus.
Found this white beauty near a public toilet at Melati Gate, heehee....

No worries, I checked before and after I sat on the tree, to make sure it's not injured by my weight >.<
No idea why it's tree trunk grows this way instead of normal vertical.

Lol at it's name, Dead Rat Tree.  The trunk is like an elephant's leg though.  Bottle Tree is another name which is more familiar to us.

Here's fruit!
ps. excuse me, have to "stamp" my cleavage >.<

It's skin is similar to kiwi fruit.

Triplets!

Bouganivilleas Collection


Son pounding onto his father lolxx..





Bamboo Collection

Giant Thorny Bamboo

Not all bamboos are for panda bears, especially this Giant Thorny Bamboo.  The thorns aren't very sharp but pokes.


And near the bamboo, big lizard spotted!

I had a great time tailing it lolxx...


Fruit and Nut Trees Collection

Squirrel cuties  and birds are often spotted on fruit trees.  Most of them are very shy and timid, hides away whenever they see human.

Just stay very quiet, not to alert them, they could be capture in your camera.

Butter Fruit Tree

Butter fruits

Name of fruit tree - Assam Kandis

Eco-Lake

Kiddo attracting a herd of pigeons and ducks.
Feeding is actually not allowed as animals might get aggressive.  However, this looked pretty heart warming.  Our little ones nowadays are being hooked onto gadgets of all sizes, they should be out to feel the living, just like this.

Happily eating, they weren't afraid of people.

Eco-lake is also home of black swans from Western Australia.

Only saw one and spend more than half an hour observing it.

It's a big black bully biting smaller ducks, terrapins and even big fishes if they were in it's way.
The duck at the rear left hand was actually "running for it's life" as the black swan kept biting it lolxx... so cute!

I was waiting for it to walk out of the lake but it didn't.

See that big fish?  It's more than a foot long and there were many in the lake.

There are a few shoreline plants which we don't get to see daily.  These plants rooted at the border of the lake like a fence between land and water, but in a natural way.

Sturdy arrowhead plants around 3 feet tall.
Name of plant - Arrow Head

Name of plant - Canna
Sweet pink Canna.
Name of plant - Canna Lily

Big brilliant orange and yellow Canna flowers, putting my hand near it so that you can see it's palm sized.


There are plenty of such birds hiding inside these Canna plants, but this is the best shot I could get.

Name of plant - Indian Shot/ Canna Indica
Name of plant - Cyperaceae

Name of plant - Cyperaceae

Eco-lake at different angles...

Singapore Botanic Gardens - Eco-lake

Singapore Botanic Gardens - Eco-lake
   
Singapore Botanic Gardens - Eco-lake

Singapore Botanic Gardens - Eco-lake
Beautiful blooms can be spotted around Eco-Lake in Eco Garden.


Charming, aren't they.

Name of plant - Yellow Walking Iris
Pink Kopsia
A lonely but unusual tree near Eco-Lake with the smoothest bark I ever seen!



Foliage Garden

Managed to snap a pic before the rooster and birds went into the bushes.


Never know this species of ginger plant comes in whitish color, I thought they are normally red or orange.

Painters spotted ^.^

A gardener maintaining aquatic foliage.
Tough job.

Carnivorous plants with freaking big red funnels which traps (and eat) insects! I gauged it's diameter approx 6 - 7cm, length approx 17 - 20cm.
Pitcher Plants

Note that Foliage Garden is close every last Wednesday of the month, unless it's a public holiday.


Jacab Ballas Children's Garden
Admission is free, but they set a rule that only children below 12 years old and accompanying adult are allowed to enter.

I had emailed them for entry request, DECLINED.
I asked (almost begging) over at the counter, DECLINED.

DISAPPOINTED
 
I hang around for a while to see if I could "borrow" a kid to get in, no luck.

So, I only have a pic of the entrance and nothing to write.

Besides the entrance is this Kidz Cafe.  I was too upset to check what's serve.
You may find out more about it from their offical page HERE

Another dining option available in Bukit Timah Core is The Dunearn in NUSS Bukit Timah Guild House.
Image credit www.sbg.org.sg
It's western dining which I didn't get to try.  You may click HERE for more information.

Meanwhile I am working hard on Part 2 for SBG's Central Core.....