March 21, 2015

21.03.15 (*****)

Good Evening,

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Oops, over a week has passed again.

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Last Tuesday, the day after Labour Day… We had a tough PT session! I probably looked like a woman who'd just given birth by the end of it… It's only been a few weeks but I think I'm already beginning to see/feel a difference… My back isn't as squishy, woo.


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Walked down to the Swan St Chamber of Commerce to buy myself a mid-week treat… That pictured, my friend is strawberries 'n' cream ice cream sandwiched between pistachio and cardamom cookies. A bit dear at $7 for a scoop of ice cream and two cookies though.


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On Friday night I had dinner at Jim's Greek Tavern for the second week in a row. This time it was with Dean, my dad and his friends from California. We had Messina ice cream for dessert.


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Speaking of my dad, he was on TV over the weekend! On the ABC talking about the organic grain shortage in Australia and how it's affecting his business (Hakubaku - Australian made organic Japanese noodles).  You can watch the episode here his part starts at 7:10. I think he did a great job! Lol at that shot of him outside though.


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On Sunday Dean and I had a chilled day in the Fitzroy/Collingwood area. We had lunch at Industry Beans, it was awesome.

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For dinner we had ramen at Shop Ramen. This vegetarian one I had was surprisingly flavoursome. When I was walking back to my seat after having gone to the toilet, the waitress said goodbye to me so I had to awkwardly tell her that I wasn't leaving… Then she told me to get out as a joke but it was weird and we were both left feeling embarrassed.


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I still only have a very vague idea of what St. Patrick's Day is about but I wore green for the Irish girl who sits next to me at work… I also posted this photo to Instagram, the said Irish girl actually got this for me to put in our terrarium, it's all the way from Dublin airport. P.S. Our terrarium is in bad condition, it died over a hot weekend a few weeks ago. We have plans to rebuild, though.

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Cupcakes for a colleague's farewell morning tea! As it was St. Pat's day I took a green tea one… I also later had a passionfruit one which turned out to be the best cupcake flavour I've tried so far.


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Wednesday was such a good night. Went to see my childhood (teenager-hood?) idol, Kele Okereke with my buddy who I went to see Bloc Party with many years ago! Can't believe it's been 10 years since their debut studio album… Our partners joined us too. Had a pre-show dinner at Fonda down the road.

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To be honest I had been losing interest in Bloc Party… They were still one of my favourite bands but I got to a point where I couldn't be bothered opening up to new releases. But I'd been keeping a keen ear out for Kele's solo stuff because it differentiated from the band's genre (indie rock) and was closer to what my musical tastes had shifted to (electronic). Bought tickets because I couldn't pass on $25 tickets.

My admiration for Kele was totally revalidated that night! He's come a long way since I last saw him with Bloc Party (8 years ago?!), he's evolved into such a performer - He knew how to work the crowd, everyone was having so much fun. This may be me being a stupid fangirl but his aura is so… god-like, the show kinda felt like we were members of a cult. Oh and he had a cup of tea (on a saucer!) on stage, so English of him.

The supporting local act "Jakubi" were also great entertainment - they had such a positive energy and it was so contagious! Their studio recordings don't do them justice, they're definitely a band to see live. I've never seen an audience engage so well with a supporting act.


The following day, a girl at work asked if I'd take a spare ticket to a School of Life workshop about how to communicate better at work… It was that night, so pretty last minute but she managed to convince me to join her… I wasn't so fond of the idea but I knew I needed it.

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I wasn't able to leave on time due to deadlines so we rushed out and as a result I knocked a screw out of my bike… I didn't have time to assess the damage but I just left it at work.

I arrived to the venue feeling quite flustered, worried (about my bike) and nervous about the workshop… They'd told us to prepare a 30 second pitch about ourselves which I really, really did not want to do… There was a lot of participation required (duh) and I freaked out having to speak to strangers following designated exercises - it felt so unnatural and I could feel my face going hot and my shoulders tense - I'm not someone who can talk with ease (I don't even like to talk, most of the time) and I think I needed to be more mentally prepared. My poor social skills during those exercises filled my mind with anxiety and I reached a point where I was feeling so uncomfortable and distracted by my negative thoughts that I had to go home half way through. It'd been a while since I've felt embarrassed and frustrated about my inability to articulate well verbally…


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A Christmas doggy we met on our lunch break today!

Can't wait to have a relaxing weekend, so glad I'm home tonigh… I'm so exhausted.


March 9, 2015

An Indulgent Week of Food. (*****)

Good Evening,

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Oh boy, what an indulgent week of food I've had… It's become somewhat of a tradition for my grandparents to visit from Perth during the Labour Day long weekend.

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The feasting began on Wednesday night at Colonel Tan's. I had dinner plans with a lovely friend from university, it was so nice to catch up and the food was awesome… They have yummy fruit infused water too, ha.


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On Thursday Dean and I had a quick dinner at Ichi Ichi Ku (yum!) before seeing Birdman at the Moonlight Cinema. It was the coldest night in a long time and not even our blankets could keep us warm… I kept thinking back to that perfect balmy night, the night when The Hobbit screening was cancelled. Neither of us really enjoyed Birdman… It was actually really difficult to hear what they were saying (and there was a lot of dialogue), the speakers were really muffled. The film was visually and aurally unique and cool but I found the storyline [really] boring.


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Friday night was our first meal with the grandparents. We took them to Portello Rosso and enjoyed delicious European tapas! As you can see I've stopped taking photos of everything single dish that comes out… It's quite a task, especially when most of the places I go to are tapas. Anyway, it was delightful to see my grandparents again this year.


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On Saturday we had lunch at Industry Beans, a cafe I'd been wanting to try for a while. I wanted to show them somewhere quintessentially Melbourne.

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Ojerie (my grandpa) apparently loves his coffee and he bought bags of their coffee beans to take home. The food there was delicious, it was really difficult to choose from their menu because everything sounded amazing.

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After lunch, Obarie (my grandma) and I dragged Ojerie shopping with us. I took her to the Alpha60 and Bul outlet stores, we both scored some pretty sweet bargains. Obarie also went a little crazy stocking up on her cosmetics at Mecca Maxima.

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That night, Dean joined us for dinner at Jim's Greek Tavern. We ordered mostly seafood (octopus, scallops, fish, prawns) and a serve of the baby goat.

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After dinner Dean and I headed into the city to check out Moomba. We coincidentally arrived when Jebidiah took to the main stage, I used to listen to them and Bob Evans in high school so we stayed for nostalgia's sake.

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We later crossed the river to see Japanese Wallpaper play… I've seen in three times in the past couple of months, I feel like a creep! Before he came on, Yeo was playing and he had a great energy.


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On Sunday I joined my family for dinner at Coda. I wore one of the dresses I bought at the Alpha60 outlet store paired with a drawstring bag Obarie made for me out of a kimono she used to wear.

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Coda was delicious! The waitress there said we were the most polite family ever, haha. When she asked if we were family, my dad said yes, three generations… Then Ojerie said, "I'm the youngest" which was cute.

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What a beautiful angle to see the Moomba fireworks from!

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We went to an old school cocktail bar called Eau De Vie upon my brother's recommendation. It felt like going back in time.

My brother and I rode our bikes home together and it was bliss with all the road closures on St. Kilda road (Moomba).


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Today was Obarie and Ojerie's final day in Melbourne. I saw them one last time for lunch. This is the other dress I bought at the Alpha 60 outlet store.

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Obarie was craving ramen so we decided to check out Melbourne's most hyped up ramen shop, Hakata Gensuke. We went to the Hawthorn store and arrived just after opening time, 12pm… We were able to get seats but it was a full house by 12:15pm. It totally lived up to the hype, it's by far the best ramen that I've had in Melbourne! The specialty tonkotsu broth was better than any I've had in Japan (!!!).

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For dessert we had Yo-Chi down the road, which was the perfect refresher after a big salty bowl of ramen.

Said bye bye after lunch, it was so nice to have them visit! I'm hoping to pay them a visit in Perth since I haven't been in a few years.


March 2, 2015

Off my Chest. (*****)

Good Evening,

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Oops, quite some time has passed since my last entry.

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The Saturday before last, Dean and I were in the city for his friend's birthday party (so lovely of her to invite me, I had a great time!) before heading out into White Night. We had plans to see The Hobbit at the Moonlight Cinema but it was cancelled due to a little sun shower at 5PM… Pretty disappointing seeing as it was the perfect balmy night for it.

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The projections on the Exhibition Building were so next level! The leafy one above made us feel as if we were in a video game.


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The following day, Dean,  Bianca, her twin and I had plans to check out the Adelphi Rooftop Pool Bar… We were so keen but when we got there, the bitter man told us that he couldn't let us up because it was after 5PM (10 minutes past!), I had even called up prior to making our way there and the guy said the pool closes at 7PM and didn't even mention the 5PM cut off. He was clearly a stubborn person so we didn't even bother to reason with him… We just left and ended up swimming at Bianca's family's pool and having a jolly time.

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After a dip in the pool we went down on to the streets to snack on delicious Asian street food, stalls were up to celebrate Lunar New Year.

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We had a lie down along the river below the fire blowing [retired] water fountains.


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On Tuesday after work I attended my second Personal Training class. It was difficult to learn all the different activities but it was lots of fun… I learnt that I can't do pushups, not even one proper one.


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On my way to work on Friday, Dean waited by the road until I passed and captured me enjoying my sunny morning ride… I'm not ready for Autumn, I feel like summer didn't grace Melbourne this year!

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Another photo Dean took after work when we rode to Fitzroy to attend the launch party for Melbourne Whip - a neat free publication featuring the bikes and riders of Melbourne.

P.S. I bought this Kloke dress on Thursday night at the preview night of the Magic Designer Sale, it's the comfiest thing in my wardrobe!

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Dean and his bike are featured in this first issue.

That night while a group of Dean's mates and I were grabbing burritos from Trippy Taco, we heard of the chilling news that a young man had been killed riding his bike down Sydney road by a careless woman not checking before she flung her door open and forcing him onto the path of a moving truck. Every cyclist's worst nightmare and biggest fear because it's just so unexpected…

Watch the video below (couldn't figure out how to embed?!) before you jump to victim blaming conclusions like so many did on social media before footage was released (Note: In Victoria cyclists are to ride to the left of traffic, often wedged between traffic and parked cars - it's illegal to ride on the footpath)… The rivalry between motorists and cyclists in Australia causes me much grief  - a person's mode of transport does not define them, we're all human at the end of the day and both good and bad road users exist regardless of what's getting them from A to B.

The poor lady in the video who lost her son to another dooring incident articulates her opinion well, views I totally share. A bunch of cyclists are rallying towards better bike infrastructure which would be ideal but I think education and awareness really is the key - most roads (that I've ridden, at least) are safe just as long as everyone is obeying the rules and sharing a mutual respect.

… Evident in some of the insensitive, irrelevant, ill-informed comments on the video, unfortunately we're not quite there with the respect part…  

In my opinion there's no fair compensation for taking an innocent person's life and ruining others' (Truck driver + loved ones) out of a subconscious low regard for others (the word,"mistake" is too forgiving for my liking). Dangerous acts on a car, bike, motor bike and even on foot shouldn't be tolerated. It's not a nice way to be reminded but following some of the road casualties of late, I hope people have reflected and become more cautious and responsible on the road.

End rant.


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Saturday night 6 of us caught up over a feast at Gyoza Douraku and dessert at a place close by. We got to sit in the private room! Yay.

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Nutella and peanut butter crepes with ice cream, caramel sauce and fruits… Was so good.


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On Sunday Dean's family had a spare ticket to the air show so they (he) invited me to join them.

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The shows were very spectacular… It all looked very dangerous to me.

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The food stalls there were good!

It was a nice day out, something different for a change! The crowd there reminded me of the people from my hometown, Taupo (NZ). The enthusiasm of some of the grown men there (Dean included) was kinda pure and cute.

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