Sunday, 30 October 2011

Perth 2011: The First Day, Part I

Hey everyone! Greetings from the land of booze and low-fat milk, Perth, Australia! Yup, I arrived safely and am now securely and snugly ensconced in Chris and Jade's lovely home in Kardinya, just a couple of streets away from Pine Grove where Judi, Little Jo and I used to stay. It's been a nice and quiet Sunday so far, with me just chilling out at home with Chris and Jade, following a couple of days of activity.

First off, let's do some recaps about my flight over as well as the arrival on Friday morning! The flight was thankfully uneventful – and even surprisingly brief, which indicates that I must've dozed off at some point, which is so unlike me, and which I don't even remember doing! It could be because the flight was relatively smooth most of the way, and with me not having a clock or watch on hand to keep an eye on the time, time actually went by perceptively quicker than it would've otherwise. Heh. So that was all well and good.

Now, Perth airport had been held up the day before by a strike by customs' workers, so I'd been prepared to get stuck at immigration coming in. Much to my surprise, though, I got through within, like, fifteen minutes: came into the terminal building, headed to immigration, polite chit-chat with the guy behind the counter, headed to baggage claim, got my stuff, proceeded to customs, didn't get my stuff inspected, was shown the exit: "Have a pleasant stay." Well, I will, thank you very much!! And off I went. It was 5:20am by this point – the plane had touched down half an hour earlier than scheduled! – and I'd told Jade to pick me up at (eeek) 7am! Which meant there was time for a coffee and a chillout in the arrival hall. Thankfully, Jade had the good sense to arrive earlier, so she was there by about 6:15am. So it was all well and good, and this being springtime, the climate was nice and cool but not freezing, and all in all, it was a good arrival! EXCEPT...

A rather traumatising event unfurled while I was about to get my cuppa coffee at the arrival area. I'd walked past the tall flight of escalators and moments later, I heard a series of loud crashes. Then the people in front of me, who could see the escalators behind me, reacted with surprise, even shock. I turned around just in time for some poor guy to land at the base of the escalators, having taken a nasty tumble down the hard and jagged escalator steps! Oh dear!! I had no idea how far up he'd been when he'd fallen, but let's just say he landed hard in a crumpled heap and proceeded not to move. Immediately airport workers began rushing towards him, and there was a lot of hoo-haa as emergency personnel were called and hunky paramedics hurried over to attend to him; and not before long an ambulance was pulling up in front of the airport doors and the poor guy, who was about middle-aged and thankfully conscious, had his neck braced and was loaded onto a stretcher and taken away. Oy vey! Never a dull moment. Hopefully he's all okay. Poor guy.

So that was that. On the flight over, I'd sat next to a girl from China who didn't speak much English and needed help filling in her forms. And then it turns out she had a bit of Tourette's because she kept sighing and hmm-ing and haw-ing almost involuntarily throughout her waking hours, as well as spouting random exclamations of Chinese phrases every now and then. And at one point, two babies in nearby seats began to cry (oy vey!) and the Chinese girl began making crying sounds along with them, which was pretty amusing if not a bit interesting. And to add to the fascination on board, some guy sitting in front of me began to watch Final Destination on his laptop, which, as you might know, features lots of people dying in horrible grotesques accidents, including a nasty plane crash in the first movie (and SPOILER ALERT at the end of the fifth movie). Um. Not the best movie to watch on a flight, perhaps?? Oy!

Okay then, I'm gonna pause on the blog updating for now. I'll come back soon with more recaps on the past couple of days, including Berni and Mike's gorgeous wedding... but for now I'll leave you with a couple of pics of Jade and Chris's lovely guestroom in their renovated upstairs area! Yup, I walk in and this is what awaits me. Mmmm. Comfy. Bliss.

And here's a self-indulgent pic of me in a fancy mirror on the wall. Oh, I should add that on a whim, I splurged on a new camera on Thursday. A very impulsive buy, but after so many recommendations from friends – and having inexplicably lost my big-ass fancy camera in KLPac a month or so ago, oy gevault...! – I finally settled on a Canon Powershot S95, which, believe you me, makes any ol' picture look pretty darn good. Check me out as proof of that. It's just the camera working its magic, HEH. Okay, I don't look half bad either, all garbed up for the wedding last night. But more on that later. Okay, till then... see ya!

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Ramblings from the LCCT

Hey all! Quickie update! I'm at the low-cost carrier terminal waiting for my flight to Perth to celebrate Berni's wedding on Saturday! YAY! I know I've been quiet on this blog lately (and quiet in life, too, generally)... but I'll write back with more updates soon. In the meantime, I'll leave you with my lesson of the evening. You see, I've been back on my diet (last successfully followed through in 2009) for the past 15 days, and while I've lost close to 8kg in that time, tonight I decided that the diet would end the moment I reached the airport. That, my friends, was a mistake: the airport has nothing in the way of healthy foods. You see, the plan had been to ease back into regular-ish eating through selective choices of foods, i.e. focusing on healthy stuff. The airport, on the other hand, decided to put a wrench in the works by not allowing me anything healthy to choose from. So I settled for a healthy-looking mini half-pizza, which ended up being mayo and bbq sauce and cheese drenched. So much for that. Where was I going with this? Oh yea. The lesson. If you go on a healthy-foods diet for 15 days and don't ease yourself back into regular foods, you end up feeling like I am right now: sickly. Urghle. Gross. Bleargh. And now I'm about to board the plane for a five-hour trip down under. Fun. Okay, that's all for now. Gonna go. Hopefully not in more ways than one, HAHAHAHA. Bye.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Wedding Bells!

Here are some long overdue pics of the wedding in Penang a month ago! Heartiest congradulations to Alex and Jo, who are married at long, long, long last! Hehehe! These are professional pics of the pre-wedding festivities, courtesy of Jo and Al. I'll put up pics of the post-wedding festivities (umm... not what you might be thinking, LOL!) later on. In the meantime, click on the pics for bigger views, and enjoy!

Groomsmen having breakfast at the groom's:

Nick still doesn't know how to tie a necktie:

In the church: the groom and groomsmen:

I now pronounce you...:

Big Neek squeeze!:

Group shots on the church steps:

Sunday, 2 October 2011

And Here It Is!

Video of my Short+Sweet Musical entry, Float N'Sync: The Rise N'Fall of the Bad Streak Boys!! Check it out! Thanks to Trudy Ganendra for the footage.

Edited to add: Here's another clip of the final show, from a different angle. This one isn't as clear, sorry about that... but enjoy it anyways! Thanks to BB Ostella Adam for helping with the video. :)

And The Winners Are...!

Whew, what a night - the closing of Short+Sweet Musical, plus awards night!! I'm very proud to announce that we've won two awards this year: for Best Glitz and Glamour and yours truly for Best Musical Director. Holla! Congratulations also to all the other groups who won! As I'd predicted two posts below, A Taste of Love – a cheesy (literally) love story about cannibals who fall for their prey – won Best Libretto, Best Composition and Audience's Choice, and deservedly so. Others include Best Director for Meanwhile..., the story of two disgruntled stagehands who mock stage actors; and Best Overall Production for Oriental Take Out, the hilarious tale of a hapless geek who calls for an Asian escort. Well done, everybody!

On another note, I'm grateful for our showing having come this far in spite of a mere two and a half weeks of rehearsal time, plus two choreography sessions of about 2.5 hours each. That's all we've had. And on a personal note, I'm proud of what this show represents. Let me copy-and-paste what I'd put up on Facebook:

Confession: Because of depression I'd been severely uninspired, unmotivated and uncreative all year, and initially couldn't even get my act together to submit something for Short+Sweet. But thanks to the encouragement of a few good friends, I forced myself to sit down at the 11th hour and write Short+Sweet Musical: FLOAT N'SYNC: THE RISE N'FALL OF THE BAD STREAK BOYS. And then there were the constant battles to get it all together: "Shit, this is all way too much effort (CRIES)." But thanks to these good friends, I kept at it, even though my brain kept telling me to give up. Ultimately, I'm glad I did it – that, I believe, in itself is a triumph. Thank you, everyone.

And it's true. So despite my chemically imbalanced brain now threatening to tell me I suck for not having done better (to which I fight back: "YOU suck!"), this has been quite an accomplishment indeed, which I need to remember and hold on to. So again, thank you, everybody. For the continued love and support.

Saturday, 1 October 2011

Take A Closer Look...

I know I'm reposting this, but come on! Check out, in particular, Jon (who's on the left) and his expression and his gestures! Look at how wrong it is – and sexy as hell!

If I Were A Judge...

There are so many wonderful shows in this year's Short+Sweet Musical that I thought, given the opportunity, I'd be keen on judging 'em! So here's my selections for who might win some of the big awards tomorrow night... hark, I'm not nominating my own show for the categories of best music and script! No, I truly believe there are worthier entrants this year... so below are my predictions. Let it be noted the time and date of this blog post... and we'll compare it with the list of winners when it's out tomorrow night!

Best Libretto (Script): Meanwhile...
Best Composition (Music): A Taste of Love
Best Glitz and Glamour: Float N'Sync
Audience's Choice: Tough call. Between A Taste of Love, Meanwhile, Oriental Takeout and Float N'Sync. My Prince Will Come is also a strong contender. Based on audience reactions, I'd like to optimistically predict Float N'Sync.
Best Overall Production: Again, difficult - in my humble opinion, all above qualify, especially A Taste of Love, Oriental Takeout and that blasted boyband brouhaha. Dare I dream we will win? Hopefully. People have commented that in terms of overall execution, we are the "tightest", i.e. most polished, most "in sync", pardon the pun. Hopefully this will prove true. But if not, it's okay. I'd be pleased for any of the above to win.

Other award categories are Best Actor (Male); Actor (Female); Supporting Actor (Male); Supporting Actor (Female); Director and Musical Director. Wish us luck!

Okay that was fun. Yay, go boy band!