Sunday, July 20, 2008

Impressions from China - And It Begins...

Whoa. Talk about clampdown.

Today - July 20, 2008.

Beijing starts its odd-day-even-day car plate traffic restrictions. You can only drive your car on even days if your license plate ends with an even number & vice versa for odd days.

No more major construction in the city. Which means no work for construction workers.

No more trucks bringing in goods into the city.

It also looks like our satellite TV channels (probably not so legal) has been cut off. Which means no more Star World. AXN, Second Avenue (which has current TV programming from the US) etc.

This is supposed to go on for the next 2 months. Just as well that we will be away for one of those months.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Travelog - Jersey Boys

I love musicals, & always have, whether on the big screen or live on stage.

It was with eager anticipation that I went to the Broadway musical Jersey Boys, which is based on Frankie Valli & his career with the Four Seasons.

I loved it.

Even my husband & two boys, who are usually averse to watching musicals were enthralled almost from start to finish, so much so that once the curtains closed, the first thing my 14-year-old said was, "Let's watch it again." We even bought the CD recording of the music & now, included in their iTunes playlist are Four Seasons classics like Walk Like A Man, Sherry, Big Girls Don't Cry etc!

Listening to the CD which had John Lloyd Young playing the role of Frankie Valli, I think I much prefer Young's voice to Michael Longoria's, whose falsetto, honestly speaking, sounded rather chipmunk-ish at times.

Christian Hoff (who played Tommy DeVito) was brilliant. I could see why he won the Tony for this role in 2006. Peter Gregus , who played the "happy" (*ahem*) manager Bob Crewe was also very enjoyable.

For anyone hoping to catch a Broadway show while in New York, this is HIGHLY recommended!

Here's a snippet taken from the David Letterman show, featuring the original cast doing a medley from the show, with a very enthusiastic review from Paul Schaeffer...


I hate moving house.

We recently moved to another house in the same compound due to issues with the old house. This is the umpteenth time we've moved. And moving just one street over doesn't make the process any easier. All that packing, then unpacking then sorting out & putting stuff makes you realize just how much stuff one accumulates (let alone FOUR people) in a lifetime.

Moving into a new house is kinda like getting to know a new acquaintance. We have to figure out how things work & where things belong & all those idiosyncrasies that go with the new place. An added challenge now, that comes with age, is putting things away & being able to remember at a lated date, where these things are! Ah, the joys of aging.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008


I've blogged about this.

Mr Wang, Dr Huang, and Angrydoc have all blogged about it too.

This letter in today's ST Forum, together with several others, tells it from the viewpoint of the patient.

It's a tough call to make. As doctors, we tend to look at the world through rose-tinted glasses, where altruism is the best way to get things done (well, maybe not so much anymore in today's society). But till we can walk in the shoes of someone who is actually suffering through organ failure, are we equipped to moralize & lecture on what is right or wrong about $$$ being involved in organ transplants?

As I've said before, this needs to be looked at from different perspectives...

Monday, July 07, 2008

Impressions from China - Back in BJ

We arrived back in Beijing last weekend to sweltering heat, humidity & torrential rain. As we landed, we could hardly make out the terminal buildings because of the haze (and there are how many more days to go before the Olympics, hmm?)

Entering the spanking new terminal 3 of the Beijing Capital International Airport was like entering a greenhouse. True it has lovely architectural design, beautiful lines & is shaped like a dragon. But when it is mostly covered with glass, & the airconditioning doesn't work properly... well, you can imagine.

This is the Departure Hall. Beautiful, isn't it?
It certainly didn't prepare us for our arrival back!

I thought that with all that extra space, getting out of baggage claim wouldn't be such a crush compared to crummy old terminal 1. But the same old bottleneck happened. It seemed like everyone arriving there was exiting through the same door surrounded by throngs of people holding signs with names of the guests they were waiting for.

Some things never change.

Yup, we're back in China.