UK Trip Day 2: Taking In The English Country

And so I’m done with my one month holiday in the UK and it’s back to full speed at AIMST toiling away in the clinics. The holiday was good, it did sort of renew my zest of life. Like I really wanted to come back and LIVE my life you know? 

I wanted to BOIL broccoli in hot water and sprinkle salt for a light meal. I wanted to sketch and paint (you already know that!). I wanted to melt white chocolate and sprinkle chopped onion to make my favouritest chocolate in the whole wide world – WHITE CHOCOLATE WITH ALMOND BITS! I wanted to come home to swim more. I wanted to come home to cook up ideas to further promote the Sticker Monster (Which had its first taste of INTERNATIONAL COD. Yeah, I delivered stickers by hand to a little 9 year old girl at Victoria Station! Wooot. Was supposed to do one in France, but she was working way down south from Paris. 🙁 )

So anyway, here’s Day 2 of my UK trip. I vow to finish blogging everything that I’ve not blogged: Terengganu Oral Health Trip, ADSALympics 2009, Events in August.. oh god. I PROMISE! Now that I um, have a macbook (heh, my pink blinged died in UK) and with photoshop’s awesome automate feature… I have no excuse. Oh, and the fact that I can just drag photos from flickr and drop it in wordpress. Yes. I only just found out. -_- All this while I’ve been “copying image url” and then “inserting image” and then pasting the bloody url there. What a waste of time! The 56k killer must be well equipped with the shortest and fastest ways of frying people’s modems with an avalanche of photos. As always. 

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We’ve been having western food almost every night and this was when we had our dessert on the first night- Strawberries with Chantilly (i think) Cream or Whip Cream. Heavenly!

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Mmmmm. It’s like condense milk but not as viscous and with just the right amount of sweetness. 

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My Uncle Terry and his best friend Uncle Steve both took a whole week off and took my whole family around Surrey, where they live. It is sort of the suburbs of London, only about 40 minutes by train. Dad was having a great time snapping pics of all the never seen before plants. 

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We went to a place called Boxhill and from the brochure, I gather that people go there for their evening jogs and it had some rather detailed information about the flora there. 

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Here’s a flora with a fauna!

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The view was amazing! There was this huge grassy field, you know the term ‘rolling hills’? At least I hope it is used that way. Well yeah, the field has a pretty steep slope and if you run and trip, you could very well roll all the way down the hill.

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Taken with dad’s camera. 

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A mysterious path which we later explored! 
 

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And the grass comes up to hip level! So very Sound of Music! *spins in circles*

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A choo choo train coming by.

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A closer look at the town that we were looking at.

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Who cares about the name, all that I know is that it’s a really pretty flower! 

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Completely dwarfed by the old gigantic tree.

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The other parts of the wood which we didn’t really venture into. One wrong footing and you’ll roll down.

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This is nice..but I have pictures of bumblebees hovering over flowers. Those are nicer! Bumblebees are actually furry and chubby! I never knew!!

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I think these are blueberries!

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Uncle Steve plucked some for us to eat.

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The thing about the plants in the UK is that chances are, the berries are edible. When I went walking around the neighbourhood with my aunt I was like a broken tape recorder pointing at any tree with fruits going, “can eat one ah? can eat one ah? can eat one ah?”
 

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Sophisticated dandelions!

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These are okay. There are cuter dandelions there though.

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They were pretty tall too.

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It came up to my nose so obviously had to get this shot right!

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What squirrels eat.

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Sigh, a little bit of hiking. 

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Blueberries/blackberries! We were eating it as we plucked it off the trees. These just grow in the wild in abundance!

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A really ancient looking tree.

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This is so pretty right?!?!! A star shapped fluffy plant! Awwww. 

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The entire plant was made up of fluffy stars.

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Picnic after the walk! l-r: Mum, Grandma, Grandma Doris (Uncle Terry’s mum)

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Uncle Steve who brought most of the drinks.

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Another excuse to wear my baby blue eyelet dress from Forever21! 

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l-r: Myself, Grandma, Grandma Doris, Uncle Steve, Uncle Terry/Koo Cheong, Dad

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For all the frolicking i did on the grass, I came home with nary a grass stain.

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Hello!

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The grass is soooooo soo soft.

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Mum wanted me to have a full length photo. Excuse the sneakers. 🙁 I wore sneakers everywhere as I didn’t want to suffer should the weather suddenly turn cold.

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Awww Grandma Doris looked so happy here. 🙂

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They then took us to a vineyard and there was a nursery nearby so we went trigger happy again. Seriously, the flowers are so much more vibrant than the ones we have here.

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And unassuming gnome peeks out.

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Don’t know what plant.

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Even the scarecrow is so cute.

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Koo Cheong said to take a picture of him and the scarecrow and to tag Mervyn on the scarecrow. Due to visa issues, Mervyn could only come one week later. So basically he missed out on four days of sight seeing.

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Any plant you want, they have it.

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The vineyard that just stretches on and on.

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Another kind of dandelion.

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But none can beat the cuteness of this type of dandelion. This is the one that tells the time when you blow really hard at it. I don’t know exactly how to count though Grandma Doris was telling me how it was done when she was a kid.

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It’s just so round and lovable right?

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I blew a bit already.

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Yeah sorry I just love the dandelion so much so I’ll make you suffer with one last photo.

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There weren’t many grapes growing in the vineyard. 

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Different angle lah, sorry.

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Most of it still looked like that.

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Group photo without Koo Cheong and dad.

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I could lie on this and fall asleep. 

 
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You’re just going to have to layan all my flower pictures.

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About RM30 bucks for a bottle of wine…. with 10% off somemore. -_-

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I was in an artsy fartsy mood again.

After the vineyard, my uncle took us to Richmond Park – one of King Henry VIII’s favourite place to hunt. There are still plenty of wild deers running about in the park. But none for shooting lah, obviously. Deer dung all over the place too. Just to describe the size, I would say it’s about more than twice the size of NUS’s compound. And for those who has not been to NUS, NUS is like a freaking town already. 

 

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Dried grass due to the hot summer day.

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My father would love to bring his kite here to fly. 

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The deer sure knows how to make his shit look pretty. 

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Lanci deers.

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It was warm but the sky was gorgeous.

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And they mostly moved in herds.

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Posing with the love grass.

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One of the many roads at Richmond Park. You can actually get lost in there. 

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More pretty flowers!

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Who needs a DSLR eh? 😛

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The thing about taking photos in the UK is that you would hardly need to edit your pictures later. The colours are already perfect. 

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More plants..

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First sign of autumn! 

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Some flower. Sorry yeah damn boring. But I like.

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This was growing in the wild.

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Dad layaning mum.

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After every photo taken of her, she must see it one.

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Chilling by the benches after a long day of walking.

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In the UK they have benches that family members of a deceased person can buy to honour their departed loved ones.

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There was also a wedding going nearby.

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Her entourage…

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..who arrived in style!

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On the way back to Sutton, we passed Wimbledon and though I am no tennis fan (horrors!), it still seemed pretty cool to know I’m within the vicinity of the Wimbledon Stadium. That’s what it is called right?

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Pretty houses all along the street.

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Randomly snapping at buildings that we don’t have back home.

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You’d come to realize that most of the buildings are not painted. Seems more authentic that way.

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Just one of the many gorgeous graffitis I saw during my trip.

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Another random pic.

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And what would a trip to England be without watching East Enders on the telly? That show is SO old. I wonder how it survives.

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My aunt made some pasta dish for dinner. Can’t remember the name now. But the pasta wraps the meat and it is served with normal bolognese sauce. That’s parmesan cheese by the way.

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Not store bought!

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This was store bought la.

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Damn filling.

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Ventured into my aunt’s common garden and came back with some dessert. Some poisonous, some not.

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When you’re in the homeland of Tesco, of course you would have to go to one for novelty sake. 

More to come. Hopefully.

Paris Inspired Me

I’ve never regarded myself as a workaholic but I think two weeks of holiday from Malaysia is just about enough for me! Okay, maybe not so much the working part but I just want to come home and get on with life. It’s like I put it on pause and it feels kind of unsettling.

I’m missing three weeks of my final year. I try not to worry. Really! Missing out on the juniors’ orientation and stuff. Btw, I heard that the medicine people did the batch 5’s orientation..wtf? It’s one of the few things we poor boring dental people look forward to each year.

I’m having a lovely time here in the UK despite the painful prices my father has to pay for simple meals and everything is totally unaffordable. The shopaholic in me is dying inside… I. need. my. shopping. malls. I need shoeeess.(as in to feed my addiction)

Speaking of shoes, I actually saw some really nice one in Paris. Pretty colours in leather-like material and for like 15 Euros, which is, what, about RM80? Pricey but what one would expect to pay for a nicer pair of heels. Sigh. Shop shop shop. Maybe I need to see a shrink.

I just got back from my europe trip.

Amsterdam – need to go back without the parents (KIDDING, DAD).
Switzerland – totally gorgeous! Ever seen a clear river in the middle of the city?
Germany – was in the suburbs. Bah.
Paris – I think I’m in love.

And the cold weather is making me miss Chee Kiang more. Haha, poor thing only get missed in low temperatures. Kidding lah, I can’t wait till we both graduate and then get a place together. Counting the days. 🙂

So yeah, favourite city by far? PARIS! Omg.

I always thought artsy fartsy people are pretentious and I always roll my eyes at people who give up everything to ‘chase their dreams to be an artist’ but now I see the light. I really do.

I didn’t get to go see the Louvre as I heard the Mona Lisa is so small. Probably about the size of my laptop.

I’m not particularly interested in those big names and stuff but I wouldn’t mind that when I know a bit more! I went around (and got lost) in Montmartre. It’s a village where most artists from Paris go to showcase their work.

I THINK I WANT TO START PAINTING!!

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Saw this  particularly gorgeous one of two fluffy cats looking out at the Moulin Rouge (which I saw with my own eyes btw when we got lost!). I don’t understand how they manage to make the colour shine so brightly, like there are really lights coming out. I want to paint LIKE THAT. And there’s another kind of painting style which I adore. I think they call it water colour painting. You know, like very light pastel shades carelessly painted within black outlines but not totally staying within the lines, do you know what I mean?

First thing to do when I get home: Buy artblock.

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If I hadn’t gone up to the Eiffel tower, I would probably have to make another trip back to Paris just to go up the metal structure. Which I did. 🙂 We thought we didn’t have enough time but dad made sure that my brother and I went up the tower. NO ONE TOLD US THAT YOU HAD TO CLIMB ALL THE WAY UP TO THE SECOND FLOOR. Dad and mum certainly didn’t say anything, so cheeky. Mervyn and I were almost dead. Imagine, ending your life climbing the Eiffel tower.

And I never knew that those blinking lights come on at night! And the colours of Paris at night? Ratatouille was totally telling the truth.

More photos later, as always. 🙂