Tag Archives: 30 days challenge

Strolling down Gion, the famous geisha district in Kyoto.

Train ride to Kyoto from Osaka, Japan

Took a train from Osaka and then a bus from Kyoto Station. Its kinda interesting what the mind remembers. In this case, I vividly recall falling asleep on the bus and woke up to find the bus fare I was holding in my hands missing.

Lesson learnt, always keep your bus fare in your pockets.

Anyway, we were at Kyoto in the day to check out Kinkaku-ji and only arrived at Gion in the evening when the sky was already dark.

Gion, Kyoto, Japan

Gion, Kyoto, Japan

A peek into the streets of Gion. We strolled down very briefly and found it to be filled with rather high end restaurants.

Gion, Kyoto, Japan

A few thousand origami paper cranes containing the wishes and blessings of those who left it there.

Paper cranes at a temple in Gion, Kyoto, Japan

Thinking back, our trip to Japan was really too short and we only managed to spend a couple of hours in Kyoto itself excluding the traveling time from Osaka.

We’ll be back Japan! XOXO.

Kamari, the black sand beach of Santorini

Darkness is the absence of light. Black is the darkest color, the result of the absence of or complete absorption of light.

Black sand beaches exist in areas with volcanic activities originating from ground lava that has evolved over centuries or created merely overnight through a large amount of lava flowing into the ocean.

On a random note, the opposite of love is not hate but indifference.

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Walking down the street to the beach. Here, you can get anything you need for a day by the beach. Towels, hats, sunblock, swimwear and what not. You name it and they’ll have it.

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An entire stretch of cafes and restaurants by the beach. Reminds me a little of Phuket but less crowded with lesser people calling out to you.

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Probably closed till summer.

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That does not look like a leisure stroll. I think we were walking purposefully to get our feet wet. Hahahaha.

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Then attempting to avoid the cold waves. The irony. Hahahhaha.

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Light up, light up
As if you have a choice
Even if you cannot hear my voice
I’ll be right beside you dear

The centre of the earth, the ancient site of Delphi

Located on the slopes of ancient Mount Parnassus, the Sanctuary of Apollo Pythios.

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Super curious about life as it was then. Without proper roads, without proper shoes, without cars and what not. How was it that they could build such majestic structures there and then amidst the mountains which withstood the harsh changes in weather for centuries?

The Tholos at the base of Mount Parnassus. Just 3 out of the original 20 + 10 columns left standing.

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Lunch at a little quiet town in Delphi before we made our way to the centre of the earth (determined by Zeus) .

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The reconstructed Athenian Treasury.

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Following in the footsteps of the pilgrams years ago, we made our way up the (now) slippery smooth marble steps  to check out the Temple of Apollo with the companionship of grasshoppers as seen in the shot below.

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What’s left of the Temple of Apollo where he spoke through his oracle at Delphi (who got high on the fumes coming out of the cracks in the basement of the temple).

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The rise and downfall of the Oracle, uplifted by humans and then felled also by the whims of humans. Sounds familiar, some things never change.

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I don’t think the Oracle was being purposefully cryptic nor were there answers to the questions asked. In all honesty, all gibberish can be interpreted as an answer which is in turn subjected to the biases of the one who posed the question.

Speaking of which, if you were sentence to death by poison (as in the past) and you are required to drink the poison. Given that it was your hand that lifted the cup of poison, is this then considered suicide?

The theatre at Delphi where drama and music competitions were held during the Pythian games.

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The stadium of Delphi which was also used for the Pythian games (what we now know as the Olympics). Was looking forward to racing my sister there, much to our disappointment, the stadium was now overgrown with weeds and of course, out of bounds to tourists.

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One day, when time travel is made possible, all shall be revealed.

On a side note, for those whom are interested in historical fiction, Nefertiti by Michelle Moran is an incredibly good read.

Only those who have the courage to the face the fiercest battles will receive the greatest rewards.

Eat more shrimp, millions of fish can’t be wrong @ Pier 39

San Francisco, California, USA

Hear hear.

I’ve always had a thing for quotes and phrases, quotes in French and Latin and all kinds of random quotes. Unfortunately, none that I can remember now.

Oh and sarcasm. Something about sarcasm that attracts me. The intelligent kind of sarcasm. Probably why I’m such a huge fan of Friends and Big Bang Theory.

And words that rhymes. Like sister and dinner.

Strawberries and chocolate. The best combination ever! Especially the ones at Chocz!

San Francisco, California, USA

Colours.

San Francisco, California, USA

Flying flag(s) against the clear blue skies.

San Francisco, California, USA

Carousels.

Pier 39, San Francisco, California, USA

The taste of home. Its a plus point that all baristas at Starbucks are ever so friendly.

Pier 39, San Francisco, California, USA

This could easily be a post on my favorite things. Hurhur.

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens, 
bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens, 
brown paper packages tied up with strings, 
these are a few of my favorite things

Alcatraz Island

I’m not quite sure if I believe in the laws of attraction (The Secret), but whatever works. If your beliefs make you a better person, why not?

I’ve always loved traveling and been wanting to give solo travel a shot. Well, travel I alone I did. And I have finally come to realize that traveling for work isn’t as glamorous as it seems and can get rather lonely at times. Especially so when I’m socially awkward. That said, I’m still grateful for every opportunity I get to travel! 😀

While there are many pros of traveling alone (few which I appreciate), being more observant to the surroundings and people is definitely top on my list.

Finally got to visit Alcatraz! Failed to heed a friend’s advice of booking Alcatraz tickets in advance and ended up paying 100USD (which includes a bay cruise) when it should have been only 30USD. Still, it was totally worth it!

It was also one of those times when I felt less lonely with someone talking in my ear throughout – the audio guide. Hahahahaha.

Alcatraz, San Francisco

Alcatraz, San Francisco

Alcatraz, San Francisco

Alcatraz, San Francisco

Alcatraz, San Francisco

Alcatraz, San Francisco

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Alcatraz, San Francisco

My favorite state in USA. Looking forward to spending more time there next year. 🙂

Open water certification at Pulau Aur

This was a long time ago..

Arrived at Aur to this gorgeous pink sunrise.

Sunrise at Pulau Aur

The tiny strip of sand where we stayed.

Diving in Pulau Aur

One of our instructors sharing about the dangers in the sea and showing us his scars from a jellyfish sting (thus that face).

Diving at Pulau Aur

What we do during surface intervals.

Diving in Pulau Aur

Diving in Pulau Aur

 

Diving in Pulau Aur

No underwater photos this time since we were all too busy trying to remember to breath, clearing our masks and our attempts to hover.

Diving in Pulau Aur

Diving in Pulau Aur

… when I was still reading paperbacks. I do miss the smell of new books!

 

Local market in Dinan

Where we window shopped, stalked old ladies to take shots of their very nice shopping baskets and imagine a life out of Singapore. I had thought those nicely woven baskets were only used in shows and in fairytales, not at a common marketplace. In Singapore, no one uses them. We just use tons of plastic bags.

The local market in Dinan which sells just about everything. Blankets, mattresses, handbags and accessories.

Market in Dinan, France

Clothes. Speaking of which, I’ve yet to wear this dress that I had gotten there. And it has been more than a year. Hurhur.

 

 

Market in Dinan, France

Plants. Strawberry plants, herbs and what not. It must be nice, being able to eat from your own garden.

Strawberry plants at the market of Dinan

Fresh seafood, crabs, these looks a lot like the famous big hairy crabs in Hong Kong.

Crabs at the market in Dinan, France

I’m guessing these are root vegetables like lotus?

Market in Dinan

And of course cheese. No market in France is complete without a huge array of cheese.

Local market in Dinan

The kind of baskets used by the locals. It was mostly the elderly doing their shopping and I have to say, those carrots do look a little malnourished.

Cute marketing baskets at the market in Dinan, France

I could imagine a life living in one of those houses with a little garden where I can grow strawberries, chillies and sunflowers.

🙂

Dinan, France

Diving in Tioman, Berjaya

Diving at Berjaya Tioman, Malaysia

Tioman island is a relatively affordable dive spot in Asia, especially so for Singaporeans. This was actually my third time to Tioman but my first at an actual resort there. My buddy and I were actually pretty excited about having a heated shower and a proper bathroom.

We usually meet at around 7pm the night before, stop for supper at JB – the best kind of supper ever, loklok!

Loklok at JB, Malaysia

Then drive down to Mersing jetty to catch a ferry so that we’ll arrive at Tioman jetty early next morning.

Berjaya Tioman Jetty

Awesome lunch for the scuba people. The food there was great.

Scuba people of Tioman, Berjaya, Malaysia

Our dive boats, Mariana and Melati. Hurhur.

Diving at Berjaya Tioman, Malaysia

It was a super fruitful trip despite a horrible first dive where one of our dive mates actually proposed to his girlfriend underwater. I saw nothing. Visibility was horrible, the designated videographer went missing and I was having a splitting headache. I did see the reenactment they did on shore after though. Anyway, we saw black tip sharks, a white and black banded eel and a juvenile yellow box fish! There were even dolphins chasing after our boats!

Juvenile box fish at Tioman

Speaking of which, we once surfaced from a dive in Maldives and saw a bunch of dorsal fins a couple of meters from us and my heart literally stopped. Thankfully, it wasn’t sharks but just a bunch of dolphins. Hehehehe. Its kinda weird how I always hope to see sharks when I’m diving but at that very moment I felt really afraid. I must say, the movie Jaws has definitely left a lasting impression. I sure most people would panic a little if they see that little grey triangle on the surface of the water.

Keep swimming.

Diving at Berjaya Tioman, Malaysia

Drinking Ribena underwater because I can. Hahahaha.

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Megalodon.

Diving at Berjaya Tioman, Malaysia

Diving at Berjaya Tioman, Malaysia

Can’t wait to dive again!

Photos taken by my dive group.

Mont Saint-Michel

A shot of Mont Saint-Michel taken off the internet. This is the photo that lured me there. If I didn’t remember wrongly, this was actually why we made a stop at Saint Malo. No regrets.

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We took a bus right outside the walled city of Saint Malo, 20 euros per pax for a round trip ticket, where it took us straight to the entrance of Mont Saint Michel. It was a usual gloomy day, no bright blue skies in our photos but gorgeous nonetheless.

A peek of the blue sky when we arrived.

Mont Saint Michel, Normandy, France

Gloom and doom just 5 minutes later.

Mont Saint Michel, Normandy, France

Oh wait, blue skies peeking out again in the next 5 mins. Couldn’t stop taking shots of its surroundings at low tide. There were actually groups of people walking on the tidal flats at low tide to reach Mont Saint Michel where its said to harbor quick sand. How cool is that! I’ve only ever heard of quick sand in Indiana Jones movies.

Mont Saint Michel, Normandy, France

Made a trip up to the abbey. The statue of Archangel Michael atop the spire. You probably can’t see it. We didn’t too. I only realized it while I was refreshing my memory reading about it on Wiki.

The abbey of Mont Saint Michel, Normandy, France

The watch towers? It looks pretty much like those in Kingdom Rush where archers stand ready with their bows and arrows. I was just wondering where the quicksand was located and you know, taking an emo shot.

Mont Saint Michel, Normandy, France

Wiki says this is the cloister.

Mont Saint Michel, Normandy, France

Mont Saint Michel, Normandy, France

The little narrow streets with a ton of souvenir shops. We did leave quite a bit of euros behind. Hurhur.

Mont Saint Michel, Normandy, France

Despite the cold and the rain, we had a lot of fun navigating the tiny streets and alleys with frequents stops in tiny cafes where we had the best pastry ever.

Mont Saint Michel, Normandy, France

More importantly, as we made our way out to the carpark to wait for our ride back, it started to hail! My first experience with hail EVER! Was super excited watching the tiny balls of ice bouncing off the floor while LF tried to shield us both with one lousy umbrella.

This is the kind of experience that money cannot buy. 🙂

Yes! Posting this 3 mins before today is over!