Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Thinking about Home

Although I love London, there are things that make me feel a pang of homesickness. I was doing my daily blog-trawl when I saw a picture of Bukit Shahbandar...and oh, I felt something deep inside me longing to be there.

Bukit Shahbandar is a forest recreation park in Brunei and Mr K-E and I spent many happy evenings there, up and down the trails on those hills. Finally emerging sweaty and tired-out in the car park, where we would buy our 100-plus from the old guy and his make-shift drinks stall.

Another one of our after-work past times was swimming at the Olympic sized pool in Anggerek Desa. Swimming in that beautiful outdoor pool, so nice and cool in the hot weather, while the sun was setting...*sigh*....

I never appreciated sunsets until Mr K-E came to live in Brunei. From the bathroom window in Brunei, we have a view of our garden and the horizon beyond. It was a view that I had seen since I was a child so never really thought about it - until Mr K-E said how happy it made him, to come home from work and look out that window while taking his bath...the beautiful sunset and coconut trees and green jungles beyond.

On a cold January evening in my small London flat, I'm thinking .... maybe it's time to book that flight.

Japan, November 2007 : Modern Architecture

During our trip to Japan we saw some interesting modern architecture - amidst the temples, shrines and neon-lit streets.

(We nicknamed this one "the worm")

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Dealing with Rejection

So you find someone you used to be friends with in Facebook and you send them a chirpy message eg Hi, remember me, we used to go to St Rudolph's when we were eight blah blah blah. Then you get a reply, might be Hiiiiiii! *Scream* Great to hear from you! blah blah blah or a more subdued Hello, yes it's me. How are you?

But sometimes you get a deafening silence. And you know that they have been updating their account because you can see their profile and they have been busy bees high-fiving other people and baking them pies and all sorts.

How do you take this? Well, I take it badly. Really badly. Like, well, fuck you too. You could at least reply. Bitch.

(Please excuse the bad language, I seem to have over-reacted. I'm normally a well-adjusted person, honest.)

Sunday, January 27, 2008


We were out and about in town and wandered past the Rainforest Cafe where we saw these little critters.

Mr K-E had to get some bits and pieces for his snowboarding trip. I came along because I fancied some sushi. Holy cow, is it just me or is it incredibly easy to rack up the bill at Yo Sushi? It's just too easy to grab those plates off the conveyor belt. Then I choke and splutter at the payment counter. *Shocked* How much? I'm sure I didn't eat all that sushi....

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Husbands and Wives

I heard some really surprising news today. My mother told me that Uncle X, a close friend of our family, has left (or been kicked out by) his wife. The reason? She found out that he has a very young Chinese, i.e. from mainland China, mistress. His wife is very upset. His grown-up children are shocked.

I can hardly believe it. He just doesn't seem the type at all. I feel really sorry for his wife, my Auntie. They didn't have an easy life when they were younger and their children were young; now they have reached the stage where they can relax : children grown up and married with good jobs, time to look forward to grandchildren etc etc. Instead, it's now tears and recriminations.

The worst thing is, I told Mr K-E about it and his response was: well, that's quite normal in Brunei isn't it? So many of your Dad's friends have second wives.

It's not easy being a wife. 35 years of scrimping, saving, cleaning, looking after your children, cooking dinner and washing your husband's underpants. Then he trades you in for a 20 year old; with a face and body that hasn't been worn down by 4 kids and a lifetime of putting other people first.

I had better stop now, before I blog myself into a depression.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Work versus Play

I have to do some work at home today but it's not too bad because I can do it on the laptop in front of the TV. I made a fuss of moving furniture around etc so that I could have the laptop on a table in front of me.

Mr K-E (exasperated): Look what is wrong with you? I'm trying to watch MTV Cribs and you are getting in the way. Just sit down will you?
Me: Yeah, well I have to work, not like some people. And I need to move the table so I can work on the laptop in front of the TV.
Mr K-E: You spend hours with that laptop on the sofa blogging, facebooking, surfing...why do you need a table now?? Just because it's work?
Me: Hhmmpphh.

In fact, why am I even blogging now? Get back to work Katie-Ella!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Counter Struck

Mr K-E likes his online gaming; his latest thing is Counter Strike Source. It's some kind of team commando shoot-em-up game...or something. He plays in his "den" with the lights dimmed and his giant headphones on. It's all about capturing enemy territory...or something. Can you tell that I'm not much of a computer game buff myself? :)

Anyway, this is all well and good but he does tend to lose track of time when he is playing. Which means lots of creeping into bed at 4:30 am on a school night. OK if you are a student who doesn't have to get up in the morning; not so great if you have to put in a hard day's work. There's only so much caffeine you can ingest before you get the shakes.

So tonight I have to get him to bed at eleven (his instructions). I have to ignore any pleading or "it's OK, I'll only stay on for another half an hour". This is tough love, honey.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

This time I really mean it

Ok, I know I have said it all before and it lasted about 3 months before I cracked. And that leak turned into a flood. I am weak, weak slave to materialism.

This time I really mean it. There will be no more buying of shoes, bags, clothes, books, gadgets etc etc until we move house. We were meant to move last summer and it didn't happen because we didn't get our act together, but this year we are going to be organised and disciplined.

Yes. It will happen. I mean it. I'm going cold turkey.

Thursday, January 10, 2008



Mr K-E went to New Bond Street and bought me this!

Awww thanks Honey!

The Shirley from Anya.

I remember blogging about the Ebury months ago but I prefer this one - just as practical but sharper and edgier - a bit like me :)

Happy Birthday


All through 2007 I have been struggling with boss issues. There have been angry blogs. At the end of the year I was really hacked-off and exhausted. I bitterly told the Directors that the team just wasn't working.

So now it has come to this. I have been told that I can move teams if I want to....but....I need to do it now, so that it looks like it is tied in with my promotion etc etc...and not because internal problems.

So is it a case of better the devil you know?

Every team has its problems. If I stay in this team, with my "weak" team leader - is this a chance for me for me to step up to the mark and really show what I'm capable of? All I know is that it is going to be even more hard, intense, difficult work. Do I even want to work that hard? Aargghhhh.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

A New Year Resolution

Looking back at the resolutions I made for 2007; most things went well. OK, I could have gone to the gym more, cooked more, had more packed lunches etc etc but hey I'm not going to beat myself up about it.

On the whole, 2007 has been a good year for me and Mr K-E. We went to Paris and Tokyo, we both got promoted at work and we've had fun together all year.

As for 2008, I'm going to focus on what is precious to me i.e my husband and close family. It's just easy to forget that sometimes when deadlines are looming and the pressure builds up.

At the end of last year, I was drained emotionally and physically - my batteries were completely dead. After this break and a good rest i.e. lots of sleep and lazing around doing nothing; I can see that I was utterly exhausted by the end of 2007. So much so that even a promotion had me in the depths of despair. I actually cried the night that I was told; I wanted the position but felt so low about work that it seemed like a bad thing, not a good thing.

Considering that I'm back at work tomorrow, I'm feeling pretty optimistic. I'm ready to take on the extra responsibility and inevitable increased workload... it's all going to be OK :)

As for resolutions:

I resolve to spend more time and energy making the people that I love happy.