Harper’s Island

Yes, I followed this series.  I do have a serious love for murder mysteries and remember relishing Agatha Christie’s mini series when I was growing up.  Who can forget Hercule Poirot, right?  So when I first saw the trailers, I thought, this could be a 21st century take on a good old fashion genre.  I was wrong though.  Beautifully shot but it’s no Agatha Christie, not by a long shot.

It’s Scream and I Know What You Did Last Summer for TV.  So yes, I was disappointed but after investing 3 episodes worth of time, that’s how long I usually give a series, I wanted to know who the killer was.  Yes yes yes, I’m a murder mystery junkie.  I had series recording and caught it when there was nothing else on TV.

I’m not waiting for the DVD on this but I really enjoyed how well it was shot, especially when I read that it was done mostly on location.  When you don’t have as much control as you would in a set, it takes a pretty talented DOP (Director of Photography … that’s Hollywood’s fancy name for the main man behind the cameras) to get it looking the way the series did.  From bright romantic pre wedding scenes to chilling prey being chased by the predator sequences, pretty textbook stuff but I have to say it could have easily been messed up had it not been for the experienced Robert McLachlan.  So thanks to him, there was one or two things I managed to learn from the series.  All was not lost 🙂

July 28, 2009

Is it just me or it is a really beautiful day today?  Must be of the aftermath from the storm yesterday.  Talk about Sunshine Cleaning 🙂  I love how a great morning manages to make me feel ready to take on anything the world throws at me.

It is a wonderful day to turn 35, so lucky for my husband who is enjoying his birthday at home while I’m in the office :p  Should have taken the day off but I’m going to leverage this burst of energy to solve all the problems I’ve been keeping in my drawers :p

Here’s hoping your day is going just as well too 🙂

Sunshine Cleaning

Brought to you from the producers of Little Miss Sunshine, here’s what I think about the movie I caught on our quick flight home from Bali.  In a nutshell, it works brilliantly as a tale about ordinary people trying their best at life.

My new celebrity crush is Emily Blunt.  I really like her.  She was, by the way, in The Great Buck Howard too.  She has an ability to be so real and likable at the same time.

Anyway back to the movie, just like Little Miss Sunshine, it’s about a family trying to keep it together.  Like most families in the world.  No one is perfect but we all keep trying.  Sometimes things just keep going wrong but you still pick yourself up and keep going.  Why?  Just because we can, is why I reckon we do it.  It sure beats the alternative, lying in bed and pretending it all isn’t happening.  So two sisters pick themselves up to start a company cleaning up the mess left behind on crime scenes, making the best out of what their lives offer.

Note: Do not watch this movie while they are serving the meal on the plane :p

Anyway, it’s movies like this that help me realise that fiction isn’t quite stranger than fact and I’m glad my fact is a tad too boring to inspire fiction.

P/S: Happy Birthday to my dear husband, thank you for coming into my life and being my very own sunshine cleaning crew 🙂  It’s a tough job and I’m glad it’s you.  Here’s to turning 35 and days filled with gratitude and love.

Sanur, Bali

My husband and I only left the villa twice, once to check out Ubud and the other was to check out the beach at Sanur.  We should have asked around but we didn’t and when we got to the beach we found out, you do not do the beaches in Sanur after 3 in the afternoon.  Why?  Simply because the tide is so low that there’s not much of a beach to see :p

The weather was pretty much perfect though.  Low humidity and windy so we walked along the beach for a bit and then found a nice quiet spot (yes, it was pretty busy despite the low tide) sat and chatted 🙂  It was nice.  Sure, we do this at home too, usually along the boardwalk of MacRitchie Park but there’s something about being away that makes hearing stories we’ve exchanged before seem new again.

My favourite bit about the walk was when we came along a spot on the beach belonging to the Hyatt hotel.  Apparently a turtle had laid her eggs on this spot and the hotel had put up a barricade to protect it 🙂

Could it be a gimmick?  Yes, the thought crossed my mind but hey, what the heck, it was a nice thought to think that turtles do actually come on the beach to lay their eggs.  So I enjoyed the thrill of it and hoped that teenage boys don’t come along to prove that there are no eggs behind the filmsy gate.

Being Vegetarian in Bali

Though most of Bali is Hindu, vegetarianism isn’t as rampant but my husband and I were happy happy when it came to food in Bali.  The lovely resort we were staying at was extremely accommodating with our dietary requirement, they even asked questions like do we eat cheese, onions or garlic?  Most places don’t know there are different types of being vegetarian.  So just for asking the right questions, I’ll be back to the resort 🙂  Especially for the killer vegetarian nasi goreng they made for me, even though it wasn’t on the menu.  It was so good that I ate it for most breakfasts.  Yes, it was that yummy.

For my very Canadian white husband, they cut up fresh local fruits with oats, it wasn’t on the menu too.  So needless to say, my husband was happy too.  And after 7 years in Singapore, he’s been sufficiently Asian-ised and even enjoyed the nasi goreng for breakfast one morning too 🙂  I still remember when he first moved to Singapore and couldn’t understand how I could rice rice for breakfast.  Now he can too!!

When we did get adventurous and left our villa, we found places that we had researched online.  What did people do before the world wide web?  Seriously.  In Sanur, after a lovely stroll on the beach, we found a quaint organic store that sold sandwiches and the like.  Best bit about it, it was charging Bali type prices and not some over priced chi chi place.

So 2 sandwiches, 2 smoothies and a salad cost us about S$12.  How’s that for a deal?  Yep, yep, yep I hear my friends making fun.  Who goes to Bali to drink smoothies and eat sandwiches?  Well, the MacLaughlans do and I have to say it was really quite delightful, especially when you least expect to 🙂

We did have a taste of vegetarian nasi campur and tempeh satay in Ubud.  In yet another quaint and lovely organic joint, Juice Ja.  I was so hungry after the Monkey Forest, which I don’t recommend unless you have a thing for monkeys, that I forgot to take pictures.  I think the veggie places in Singapore should consider tempeh satay instead of the mock meat, it was yummy 🙂  It’s no substitute for meat but the combination of tempeh and peanute sauce is really good.  Here we had 2 smoothies (mine was pineapple, orange, apple and ginger … so so so good), 1 nasi campur, 1 tofu curry, 8 sticks of satay and an extremely good tofu salad for about S$18 🙂

First Day in Bali

After a short two and a half hours flight, we were in Bali 🙂  That’s what I love about living in the middle of Asia.  Hmmm … that’s probably what some other people think about living in say, Munich and being in the middle of Europe. Anyway, the day we arrived in Bali was a glorious day.

Just perfect for me, sunny and bright.  My husband, on the other hand, was still groggy from getting hardly any sleep the night before because he was finishing work before the trip :p

So while he caught up on sleep during the short flight, I watched The Great Buck Howard, one of those indie films that happened to be produced by Tom Hanks.  Was going to watch Duplicity but it would have been too long for the flight so it was Colin Hanks and John Malkovich instead of Clive Owen and Julia Roberts :p  It’s one of those perfect of flying movies, nice human story and you can never go wrong with John Malkovich.

He stars as a mentalist, one who can read minds and hypnotize, who is a has-been trying to make a come back and his assitant played by Colin Hanks who learns more about life while working for him.  Just nice for the flight and I even squeezed in time to enjoy the sights out of my window.

After we checked in, my husband caught up with more sleep but I was already in the pool working on my tan 🙂  Just thinking about it makes me more relaxed.

Did I tell you I’m already planning for my next break :p

Bali Masari

We stayed at a lovely resort, which was far away from everything.  It was in the middle of a little kumpung that grew tobacco and rice.  For the uninitiated, that’s a tobacco plantation through the tinted glass of the car.  They harvest them, dry them and then chop them up for sale.  Looks like giant sweet potato plants to me.

So this isn’t a place I’d recommend to those that need to party or shop but it was a place perfect for my husband and I.

It’s a little on the old side but completely clean, which is the most important thing to me.  In a real Balinese village, there was nothing to see around the resort and it was like we stepped back in time.  With a river close by, we chanced upon villagers doing their washing as well as bathing in the river.  Yes siree, not only little children but adults stark naked by the river banks.

Quite pretty, right?  Except I had to angle the camera so you don’t see the junk that they throw at the side :p  Think where we were was maybe at a slightly higher altitude too coz it was always windy and slightly cooler than what we were use to in Singapore.  At night, it was amazingly quiet and the stars that filled the sky was … … it left me speechless.  I’m all relaxed but so ready to go back again :p

Back From Bali

It was truly 4 wonderful days in Bali 🙂  We didn’t do or see much but we did get a lot of relaxing done.  It was the perfect day to come home, all cloudy and threatening to rain.

So how come I’m still not looking forward to going back to work?  Says a lot about what I do :p  Anyway, will update once the unpacking and settling is done.

Off To Bali

There was a split second today I was thinking of changing our Bali vacation to a stay-cation at home.  That just got me rather upset.  It’s insane we live in a world where terrorist do as they please.  I could go on and on about it but I rather not.

My husband and I decided that where we’re putting up is a tad too isolated to interest them and we’ll be a lot more prudent with where we hang out.  If we didn’t go, we’ll be letting them scare us, right?

They have to learn that this has to stop and I’m pretty sure, they can find something much better to do with their time … I think they all grew up without love.  So everyone, take some time out today to tell your little ones how much you love them.

Next stop, Bali 🙂