I luv youse all!!!

This afternoon I went to the park with a bunch of other Kindergerten parents. I'm shocked at how 'on the outer' I felt. I know I'm prone to these feelings (try being bullied at school and growing up with a bit of social anxiety - making nice-nice with the other mothers becomes torture. Ugh. Anyway, it brought into stark contrast what awesome older friends I do have. I was late home, so they hung around my back yard, with their preschoolers. They cheered my kid's first ever wee on the potty then made me lunch and coffee while I went and put my tired kid to bed. They laughed at my jokes, they commiserated with my failings and difficulties. At other times they have ensured that a drunken Keda got home safely, they still love my kids despite having seen them at their worst, they appear to cheerfully tolerate my grubby bathroom and they do a really good job of pretending to be interested with whatever my current project is (Chooks this month). In short, these lovelies, and my other old mates, are the ones I want around my when the proverbial hits the fan. Thank you ladies :-)


Loving The Crazy

This is not going to be a post about loving partners with mental health issues, just some of the ways it's nice/not so nice to be back home with the familiar crazy.

Spending a bit of time away it was easy to call lots of things 'crazy' - in Singapore the kiasu thing seems extreme and leads to behaviour that I would deem crazy (imagine driving along and trying use a roundabout or merge lanes where no one will accept being last). We also played 'spotto' with crazy fashions - there are plenty of 'what not to wear' exasmples. Everything from warm jackets and coats (which must be more than just snuggly on a 30C day with 90% humidity) through extreme short skirts and shorts, to cute little families all wearing matching outfits. Then there are the harajuku-esque sartorial weirdnesses that I'm impressed by, but can't hope to describe.

Back in Sydney we get opur fair share of fashion oddities (like the girl with the gold sparkle ugg boots and the little black dress I spotted on my way to work this morning) but our crazy dressing is generally weird in a different way. The warm jackets don't usually come out in summer, but as soon as the weather drops below about 20C you see people walking around with scarves and beanies on. If it's windy this might be only a short stretch from sensible, but it weirds me out totally when the people with the rugged up heads and necks are also wearing skirts and sandals.

The other type of Crazy, the one I really wanted to talk about, is the specific breed of crazy belonging to my workplace. It's not only the stories my colleague tells about his partner who is convinced she was abducted by aliens and buys countless boxes of cereal when it's cheap in case they ever run out (really!), it's more the weirdness actually IN my workplace. The mad push to get a project finished, only to hear, at final draft stage, that it won't be needed any more, or that it's being put back another year. We also have an 'emperor' who get's completely riled up at the length of people's coffee breaks, but instructs their assistant to spend hours, days even, scanning family photos and transfereing music from analogue to digital format. The people here who are most successfull look busy all the time, but don't really do much, because work that gets completed tends to get holes picked in it. It's a nice stable job, but I'm not sure how long I should stay here for....


I *heart* KL!

This will be the last post from KL and the last post from my lovely little holiday. I'm at KL's budget airport, which reminds me of a train station, rather than a modern airport. The air on is lacking, the food outlets are somewhat hit and miss, there are flies and there are a lot of people waiting around. I'm one of those waiting people. My dad, bless his worried little cotton socks, decided we needed to be at the airport four hours early. His reasoning was that the traffic out of KL on Saturday evenings is horrible, and he may have been right, but it has meant I had a lot of time to kill. He is off to Europe and we shared a taxi, but he was dropped at the regular international airport, not the cheapie terminal. I didn't realise that there were two airports here in KL until the taxi driver asked which one we wanted. I can't help thinking that it would have been pretty hilarious to rock up to the wrong airport for BOTH my flights on this trip. Anyhow, I've managed to waste over an hour and a half eating sub-standard chicken rice, looking at ALL the watches, trying on ALL the perfumes and spending an overly long time choosing which packet of nuts I would take on the flight with me. I actually spent so long in the limited number of shops that by the time I left each shop I had a staff member tailing me suspiciously. I've also eaten a scone (random!) and found that I can use the airport wifi for three hours for free. That means all I need to do is make sure I find a comfy chair and I should be fine. I'm going to head through customs pretty soon, despite the warnings of the woman at the check-in counter, because a beer or two would make the next two and a half hours slide by more comfortably. I have the most awesome trip though, catching up properly with my brother, getting to know my sister-in-law so much better and holidaying with my dad for the first time once the mid-eighties. Despite all the fabulous catching up I also got enough alone time, and was quite proud of how easily and comfortably I got around in both Singapore and KL. I am now missing my little boys terribly, I can't wait to hug their strong little bodies as they try to escape, and I'm not-so-secretly hoping both of them fall asleep in my bed this evening so I can snuggle down between their warm little bodies and breathe in their loveliness. On that note I'm going to go and attempt to clear customs and find my boarding gate - I should have less than two hours to wait there (!) and I'm REALLY hoping that the good Muslim thing is relaxed once I'm through and I can find a bar!

Update: i've found a bar and have a large Tiger beer in front of me. Cheers.

Looking for a pun about Singapore Slings...

Did you know that there is a Malaysia - Singapore rivalry that surpasses the Sydney - Melbourne thing? Having only spent days in both places, I'm not ready to make any definitive pronouncements, but I will confirm that I'm really enjoying everything about KL so far. For sure SG is cleaner and safer and the roads are less hazardous, and here in Kuala Lumpur there are occasional betters and touts. By all accounts the going rate for getting off a speeding fine is usually under $50RM (AUD$20) and people tell me that the corruption is everywhere. But here in KL people look me in the eye. They smile. Staff at the hotel and other service staff actually seem to, by and large, enjoy their jobs. Smiling politely and being helpfull is just the start. They also joke with us and I've never encountered quite so many people who seem to really want to make a personal connection and appear to want to serve us with a kind of enthusiastice anticipation. ...anyhow, family is here to share breakfast and chat. I'll write more on the plane this evening.


City Rivalry

I've finally got the definitive answer as to why Sydney is better than Melbourne. Kingsford-Smith in Sydney has free wifi. This is not insignificant when one's flight is delayed for something like three hours. Surely Jetstar's customers today would be less irate if they had the opportunity to, as my boss puts it, sit in front of the greatest goofing-off tool of all time. I can easily let a few hours slip away researching the best software to, I don't know, back up my photos rather than just spending the few minutes it takes to actually back them up.  Like something I saw on Pinterest the other day "honey, can you pick up pizza for dinner on your way home. I've been too busy pinning healthy recipes for our family on Pinterest and haven't had time to cook" which is, of course, funny because it's true. Well, here I am with the iThing running out of batteries, my book almost finished (Geraldine Brooks' Caleb's Crossing) and still about three hours of flight time. I left home 13hours ago and apart from being frustrated that Melbourne doesn't have free wifi and having a deeper understanding as to why Jetstar is so cheap (this plane has ashtrays! ASHTRAYS! And doesn't serve gin and tonic. After a day like mine I would actually have been quite happy paying for it). I'm going to go and finish my book and save my last bit of battery life for posting this when I get to Singapore. I'm confident they will have free wifi at their airport!


Adventure abroad

Did I mention I'm heading to Singapore? I'll stay with my brother and his wife for a few days then we will road trip across to KL where we will meet my dad and his new wife for a few days. For me this means leaving my darling babies for the first time and being a grown-up for 10 days. I'm a bit heartbroken about leaving the kids - Kiz isn't even 3 yet and he has a nasty chest infection, Asher is at school and needs his mum- but I'm also overjoyed that I get to exist for 10 days in a world where a closed door isn't an invitation to come in and chat. The adventure started early. I got up just after 4am and got ready to go and the lovely Tinks drove me to the airport. Going to Singapore we went to the International Terminal but I couldn't see my flit number on the board. I asked at the check in counter and it turned out that my flight leaves from the domestic terminal and I go through customs in Melbourne. Tinks had already left and didn't answer her phone so I jumped in a taxi and made it with plenty of time. In fact I'm sitting at the gate writing this, using the airport wifi. Ok, boarding now...