Monday, 23 June 2014

Best family trip in years (part 1).

First of all, I'm retyping all of the below that you're going to read. Blogger showed its temper to me last night Eye rolling smile - everything that I've spent 2 hours typing and editing vanished into thin air Surprised smile , can't say I'm furious and frankly speaking, I'm not surprised- the error hasn't been the first and I'm pretty certain it wouldn't be the last. At least my memory is still fresh, and I have time on hand! Smile

If you have noticed I had stopped blogging a few days ago, because starting last Tuesday night after my brother Ken came back from the UK (oh my gosh SO glad to have him back!) and we started a discussion- I realised I had some life-changing decisions to make, and I spent most of my time pondering, doing research, seeking advice and opinions from seniors and consultants, but I still cannot make up my mind. The rest of the time was spent in the park, walking and jogging- because I desperately needed to clear my mind for a while. Also I spent a good chunk of my free time resuming the mini 'project' I was doing since last Monday.

This went on until Friday. I tried to put aside the matter because it was driving me up the wall, and as well as these things should be thought through calmly and rationally- I'm a strong believer that everything will be alright in the end- just give it the time and patience and faith (words of advice I've picked up from my parents, my brothers and Yan Jie). Red heart

Apart from that on Thursday night we welcomed Sean back into our arms once again. He had returned to Singapore for about 3 days to participate in Frisbee matches and this time, with Ken joining us (we haven't seen him for a year!!!) the boys talked non-stop.

The moment they met each other, they just talked, and talked, and talked, and talked. I forgot how ringing Ken sounds when he speaks, and how much my brothers missed each other's presence as evidenced by their unbelievable synchronicity and their seemingly endless conversations. I enjoyed listening to the boys chatted, and my mum and I (my dad was in Kedah) would chime in occasionally. The house was merry, jocund and rollicking- I absolutely loved it. Open-mouthed smile

That night, I was feeling sleepy- however the boys managed to convince me into watching a movie together. I didn't need much persuading anyway. I can't resist siblings time plus movie in bed sounded super awesome!

Movie before selfie (hey it rhymes)! Winking smile

We watched the movie 'Non-Stop'.

Starred by action star Liam Neeson, who played the role of an US federal air marshal in the movie. 

He springs into action after receiving a series of threatening text messages that unless he finds a way to transfer $150 million into an off-shore account, someone on the plane would die every 20 minutes. 

Liam Neeson has acted in one of my favourite thriller movies- 'Taken', so I was definitely eager to watch it.

I recognised Lupita Nyong'o as one of the two air stewardess in the movie as well- but neither of my brothers know her. Haha.

It was suspenseful in effort to guess who the 'bad guy' was with certain (misleading) 'clues' thrown in throughout the movie, and I was thankful to have watched it with my brothers because I appreciate company especially when watching horror (not that I'd watch it- my doctor had advised me to stay away from such movies as it may cause detrimental effects to my psychological, spiritual and emotional aspects- I'm kidding- but I have reasons to be certain that I'd scream every 10 seconds and grip onto a pillow or bolster or bury my head into the chest of anyone sitting next to me throughout the movie so I don't think it's a good idea)/ suspense/ thriller movies.

Overall my brothers were slightly let down by this movie. I take it was due to their high expectations from a movie with hot-shots casts like Liam Neeson and Oscar award winner- Julianne Moore. 

To them the movie was hanging on a poorly conceived storyline, particularly the ending- ridiculously illogical. 

You know the kind of story scriptwriters crack their heads to come up with unfortunately ends up feeling all over  the place and impossible to connect the dots? Well to them it felt that way. 

However, don't let this hold you back. You won't find the ride too shabby if all you're expecting is to watch Liam Neeson powers into action again (although again it is to be reminded that the action scenes in this movie were noticeably lesser than the usual action-packed, fighting scenes than he did in the past movies he acted in).

 personally would watch it again if I have the chance.

It was way past bed time by the time we finished watching (2 a.m.!) and while my brothers continued to discuss and break down and analyse the plot carefully (like they usually do haha Smile with tongue out), I decided to hit the sack.

The next day, we were off to Langkawi! Woohoo! Our first complete family trip after forever. Seriously, everyone of us in the family was on cloud nine and undoubtedly looking forward to it. Ever since Ken and Sean went overseas to further their studies, my parents have had a hard time arranging a time for all of us to go on a vacation together. Our family has been extremely close-knitted and we share a precious, treasured bond among us. Last year during our Melbourne trip, was our first trip without Ken, and it was different. It wasn't miserable, but it just didn't feel right. This time, my mum tried her best to accommodate everyone's time and schedule and holiday period- and the timing was perfect. My mum is amazing. This short getaway trip couldn't have come at a better time.

I woke up in the morning, and helped gingerly slice and pack the bread that my mum had requested earlier.

As you can see in the picture above, the bread was dusted with a sprinkle of flour to give the crusty exterior, and it was a successful trial.

My dad's favourite bread is walnut bread, produced with the right amount of dense, chock full of nuts and seeds, preferably no dried fruits because he isn't a fan of it (it's too sweet for him) so there's that. Smile

There were more other cute little cinnamon rolls by the side which I didn't snap a picture of.

We packed our luggage in the morning and had lunch afterwards. It was a chaos trying to think through all that we had to bring (despite the short trip, we had to make sure we bring along our essentials- in this case the Frisbee was the crucial one for my brothers and I Smile with tongue out). Around noon, our parents' friend for 20+ years (I presume), Uncle Ong fetched us to the airport. We were grateful for his help and thanked him the moment we got down of the car.

We were immensely excited and thrilled once we set foot into KLIA 2 (the new airport certainly looked new), enthusiastically deliberating what activities to be carried out once we reach our destination. 

I can't tell you how much we've missed the family trip- the fact that our family gatherings are so rare makes our time spent together like a dream to us- all too good to be true. Except it was true, and it was happening, and we were in exaltation.

The amusement and enjoyment we experienced was like a rolling snowball, it kept getting better. I wish and hope that the laughter and smiles and fun we had will bring me through those times in the future when I find myself missing them awfully.

Dad couldn't join us on the plane because he had to fly to Kedah two days earlier for work matters. He surprised us with a rented Volkswagon (fantastically comfortable! Thanks Dad!) outside of the airport in Langkawi. I flashed him the biggest smile to show him just how thrilled I was feeling at that moment.

Dad somehow took the wrong turn so our journey from the airport to the resort lobby took longer than anticipated. Not that we were affected by it, we simply used the time to capture more pictures- our ecstasy multiplied as time passed! 

The boys fooled around the resort lobby while I took care of the luggage and my parents did the checking in.

I was profusely grateful for a family member like Sean who was constantly whipping out his iPhone and saying, "Hey guys, let's take a selfie! Selfie!" throughout the trip because it captured the moments marvellously. All the pictures you see in this blog were taken in Sean's phone. I did bring along my phone but most of the time kept it in my luggage as I decided to bring it along mainly for the purpose of checking emails.

We arrived at out chalet and boy, were we contented with the room. It was neat, lovely, and appropriately spacious. Mum had booked two joint rooms to allow the 5 of us for a more pleasant stay.

We took a picture of the three of us together in the bathroom because- why not? Open-mouthed smile

After lazing around the room for a while, we decided to head out for dinner. While waiting for the shuttle bus to pick us up outside our cosy chalet, we again- as you could guess- took pictures. Winking smile

Easily my favourite picture throughout the entire trip!

We boarded the shuttle bus to the venue. Albeit the rocky road, Sean thought of taking pictures on our way and I'm delighted he did. The pictures may turn out blurry because it was tricky to keep still but these pictures are most beloved to me.

I still remember this part, where Sean was sitting at the same row as Ken and I; and the parents were in the back. I pointed to the iPhone and directed, "Dad, Mum, smile at the camera! Sean's taking a picture!". My Dad clearly didn't get the memo. Smile with tongue out  But ooh, look how happy my mum looked.

Sean was steady in taking selfies. And he managed to get the 3 musketeers in this picture! Yay!

Love this picture of my brother Ken and I! It's now my Whatsapp profile picture.

We finally arrived at a classy Thai Restaurant. We took the golden opportunity to take many pictures before sitting down for dinner.

However, there are few posted here because most of them were in the camera instead of Sean's iPhone.

Dad taking the lead.

 Love shape, sunset, sea- what could be more beautiful?

My best friend.

 My dearest parents, looking (and truly are) so sweet and loving together.

The mandatory brothers fists bump.

We were stunned to witness that we were the only Chinese customers there, as the rest were Westerners. Nevertheless, that never stopped us from enjoying ourselves. We were seated at a table, and Dad placed the orders since he was rather pro in it and we trust his taste!

There was a 'band' hired by the restaurant, going from table to table to sing songs accompanied by the different types of instruments they played (including this huge cello which I've no idea how the man lug it around with). Sean had desired for them to perform 'Let Her Go' by The Passengers, but since they weren't aware of it (as pointed out by Ken who noticed their facial expressions looking embarrassed) we immediately told them to sing whatever song they could muster- and they sang 'Let It Go'- the theme song of the movie Frozen which stole the hearts of children and adults all over the world needs no introduction, I believe.

The sky got dark and the lighting was horrible when the food was served. Hence no pictures were taken. But that was quickly overlooked once the dishes hit our taste buds. There were Green Curry Shrimp and Eggplant, Pandan Chicken, omelet, stir-fry mixed vegetables, and more. My family couldn't stop raving about how tasty the green curry dish tasted, so the amount of spice was perfect- overall the dinner was delectable and finger-licking good- Dad's orders were unquestionably spot on.

We had so much fun singing aloud while waiting for the shuttle bus after the satisfying meal. That moment was remarkably memorable. One of us would start singing a string of lyrics and the rest of us would follow suit. It was positively wonderful to have experienced that moment with my family. Ken and I taught Sean how to sing a Chinese song, "洋葱" and Sean being the joker, intentionally sang the lyrics ‘你会鼻酸’ in his unique, authentic yet straight out hilarious way which sent us laughing heaps.

The night ended on a fruitful note. We went to bed with smiles plastered on our faces (and fatigue spelled over it too!), with hopes that the next day was going to be better.

I'm going to end with Day 1 here, because I have some errands to run now! I also just got to know an enormously GREAT news via email which I'm truly thankful and gratified for- totally made my day!

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