Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Gong Xi Fai Cai

I cant think of a proper title to give this post. After my renewed vigour over the weekend in starting my early morning runs once again, my body protested seriously with serious aches and pains on Monday. So I put off going for any runs on Monday or Tuesday but it felt good to be back today. Went round 3perimeters of my block without stopping. The run was fun and my paces are increasing and getting faster and longer as well. There was a lot of sweat pouring out of my ducts today after the run. If I can keep this up - running at least 3-4 days a week it should be all good.

It was the beginning of the Chinese Lunar Year on Sunday - The Year of the Golden Pig which occurrs once every 60 years. I did go to see the celebrations and it was fun. I missed the parade though. Got to the square after the parade had gone past the square but the day on the whole was fun. There were loads of fireworks one at 2pm and another at 5pm, loads of food stalls and the Queens Guards even came around with an armoured Tank and gave kids a tour of the inside of their armoured tank as well as allowed them to do a little bit of rock climbing. The restaurants were full to the brim and there were huge queue's of people outside almost every restaurant waiting for the seats inside to be vacated so they could get in and have some grub.

Earlier on, the activities had begun at noon after the parade had gone past Trafalgar Square with the ceremony of "Dotting of the Dragon's Eyes". According to a brief history which we were given at the square, Dragons are scary animals and their eyes could only be dotted when they were sleeping. So the dragons were brought on stage blindfolded to signify 'sleep' and the Mayor of London together with other dignitaries proceeded to dot the dragon's eyes signifying the beginning of the New Year.

The dragons on stage just after their eyes had been dotted.

Legend has it that their eyes can only be dotted while they are asleeep so they were blindfolded when they were brought onto the stage for the 'dotting' of their eyes.

Thats also another reason why I couldnt go for my run on Monday. My entire body was sore from all the walking about in Trafalgar & Leceister Square as well as China Town. More pictures from the Chinese New Year celebrations can be seen HERE. There were loads of film crews and going around interviewing people too and a couple of them came up to me and I said "Gong Xi Fai Cai" to the people of China live on air!!!!! Gong Xi Fai Cai means Happy New Year in Chinese. So if any of you bloggers in China saw an african female being interviewed about how she was enjoying the new year activities on TV, that was me!!! (smile)

P.S: I did write my post's title as "Hong Si Fai Choi" previously but have now googled the sentence and discovered the correct spelling of the sentence is "Gong Xi Fai Cai" although when pronounced does sound this way: "Hong Si Fai Choi". LOL!!

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Keeping Fit

I've been sitting here for the past hour and a half trying to catch up on Tmix 's Blogville Gist and hubby is at his desk marking exam scripts and exclaiming how the students arent working very hard at all. I cant help but laugh and plead on the students behalf, asking him not to be miserly in giving out the marks. I was once a student and know how bad it feels to put in ur best efforts for lecturers whose opinion is that ur best efforts are simply bladerdash, poppycock, not good enough.

I'll be out of the house in the next hour to go for a brief 30minute jog. Went for one yesterday and it wasnt that bad. Had a jog around my block. More like jogged down the long perimerter of the block, walk the next perimeter which is shorter and then jog the next long perimeter and walk the final short perimeter. Had to start from somwhere and build my stamina which I know isnt that good. After going round the block three times, decided to walk round another three times and then had a final last lap with a dainty sprint the last few meteres of the block. I'll see if my stamina will improve this morning and I can go 2perimeters without stopping. After the 30minute exercise, I decided to walk down to Tesco and get some Washing Powder as I intended to take a trip to the Laundrette when I got home. (My washing machine has chosen to go on french leave)

I made the 30minute walk to the store, got the Washing Powder which had been my original intention as well as a couple of other items and started the walk back home to sort the dirty laundry. Somehow I have discovered that it just isnt possible to walk into a Superstore and leave with just the one item you intended to purchase. Other items stare at you longingly and lure you into purchasing them. Anyway, back home and washing sorted and put into bags, off I went to the Laundrette. The lady there was quite helpful and put me through the paces. The bathroom mats went in first, all whites into another, coloureds into another and finally jeans, towels and other heavy items into a fourth machine. The mats finished first and she asked me to spin them in another machine to remove the excess water. More money down the slot. The Whites were next and when the coloured had finsished washing too, both categories went straight into the same dryer. The heavy items went first into the spinner to remove the excess water, more money down the slot and then into the duvet dryer. Money sloted into all the indiviual dryers and another wait began. Washing, spinning and then drying cycles completed 2hours later and then the journey back home. One thing I have discovered, it is cheaper to do ur laundry at home as I didnt leave that Laundrette with any money in my purse at all!! Back home, I prepared some lunch for us.

Lunch sorted and eaten, a friend of mine who is househunting came around and we went down to the corner shops to look at the adverts. Called a couple of numbers on the adverts and went to view 3rooms. The first one was a lovely single room in a nice and clean house and the rent was just right at £280pcm but my madam decided she wanted somewhere bigger as she's used to double rooms and told the guy we'd get back to him. Since it was the first house we viewed, we decided to continue searching and if we didnt see anything better, then we'd be back for the that one. The next viewing was near an underground station very close to the high street. When we got to the door, we stood outside laughing. It was a flat above a shop and the windows of the flat were quite ugly and unkempt, with paint chipping off and she decided she didnt even want to see what the inside of the flat looked like. The third place was a lovely attic room for £300pcm and had lots of space and both of us were oohhing and aaahing how lovely the room was and had loads of space too. The attic room had no door though and was accessed via a staircase. The landlord said he didnt want an extra landline installed in the house which she would want to have if she moved in there and so that one (room) was knocked off too. She has another viewing booked for 9am this morning so lets see how that viewing will go.

After my morning jog today, I'll be off to church for morning service and then, I'm perambulating down to The Strand at noon to watch the parade in celebration of the Chinese New Year. I have always seen the celebrations on TV these past years and when I mentioned it to Madam Househunter, she was interested in seeing the celebrations live too and so we're off to the Strand together to watch the parade at Trafalgar Square and the Fireworks at Leceister Square and China Town (Soho) generally. This New Year is the Year of the Golden Pig and the saying is that children born this year are destined for success and joy. The Year of the Golden Pig is celebrated once every 60 years and is said to bring good luck and prosperity.

Britney Spears has done it again. She's hit the headlines and this time has gone and shaved off all her hair. I dont know why she's been behaving radically since her split from K-Fed. In my opinion, she's just givimg him ammunition to use agianst her in their impending divorce.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy Valentine Day

I just wanted to wish you all a lovely Valentine Day folks. I have been wined and dined lovingly today and feeling real good about it. We went to China Town for lunch and this evening had a couple of drinks with a couple of friends not drinks for two. But it was fun. *SIGH* How wonderful it is to love and be loved.

To all ye single brothers and sisters out there. Love will come eventually. To those who have found love already - hold on tight. I'm off to bed now after a day well spent. Au Revoir Mes Amis!!

Thursday, February 08, 2007

My Snowman

My Very first own snowman.

My neighbour's snowman

The view from my bedroom window

Snow Filled Trees. There is a God and his name is Alpha and Omega and He Lives. I cried out unto him and he heard my cry from his holy hill. Theatrical Am I? Snow - glorious snow fell today. Enough for me to build my very own snowman!! Just like I asked for. I was so excited today and couldnt wait to get out there and get to work. Throwing snowballs I mean and making snowmen. I still wasnt prepared enough and didnt have the right tools for my snowman's eyes so I had to make do with different colours of 'Contact lenses' for him from bottle caps. He's alright though - I think. I'll do better next year.

The down side is that its so wet and slippery outside. I have noticed that quite a number of people either have rainboots or knee high wedges boots on. Very sensible of them unlike my humble self who decided to venture out in just my sneakers and got entirely soaked right down to my socks. I have learnt the hard way - they're drying out now on my heater.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007


Happy Birthday to you ma cherie Overwhelmed Naija Babe. Wishing you many happy returns and many more fruitful years ahead.

Save some cake and goodies for me cos I'm coming over with ur present as soon as I close from work at the end of the day to join in the fun.

Its going to snow tomorrow. The weatherman forecasts about 14cm of snow. So all those planning on calling in sick - get prepared.

Blogger is trying to force me to switch over to Beta Blogger. I'm scared. I tried to log in throughout the early hours of the morning and the old blogger sign in page refused to open. The only page showing was the one asking me to switch over to beta blogger and create a google acount. So finally I created a google account this morning and blogger allowed me to sign in but I've not switched over yet. Still procrastinating.

Monday, February 05, 2007

My 50th Post!!!

Yeah!!! This is my 50th post and still counting. Its been six months since I joined this wonderful blogger family. I havent had much time to do blog reading this week so I have a lot of catching up to do. Which I'm going to do right after I put this post up.

I went shopping today. I'll rephrase that. My brother-in-law (BIL) decided to hit the shops today and I tagged along with him. It was fun though. Seven good hours spent pounding the streets. It was worth it though. We started out at Jermyn Street, got some shirts from TM Lewin and Hawes and Curtis, Went down to Church's and got some wonderful brougues for him, Then we headed off to Oxford Street. Got some trousers for him, went to M & S, got some wallets and then while he was paying for the wallets, I decided to go down to the food hall to get some water and something healthy to nibble. My new months resolution is to stay free and abstain from carbs. (Is that the same thing as carbohydrates?) Anyway, I have decided to keep away from them this month and I pray I do this sucessfully - so far so good. (I can hear you all say yeah right - the month has only just begun) A good friend of mine has lost 13KG so far from abstaining from carbs and sugar and is heading towards losing 13KG more. I am more than inspired by her achievement!! She was two sizes heavier than me since she gave birth to her baby and has now dropped two dress sizes. I must say I am most ashamed that I'm now heavier than her and I havent even "dropped" yet!!! But heading steadfastly to where she's coming from. I shall not be left behind!! I am joining that train and come February ending, there should be some positive results. The only snag is I havent weighed myself yet so how will I know how many pounds I have lost? Anyway, I will not let that sidetrack me from this my new month's resolution.

Back to my story now. Where was I? So I bought some banana's and some sparkling water. I then went the whole length of the shop floor to see if BIL had paid for his purchase and come down to the food hall to meet me. No sighting of him. I headed up to the Ground floor. Called his mobile and he said he was in the food hall. In my mind, I was like, OMG!!! I just left there now. Oh why did I leave him in the first place? Serves me right if we waste time searching for each other. Headed back to the Food Hall and behold he was there standing by the counter. Apparently he was in the Gents when I went to that area to look for him and came out after I had gone past. I heaved a huge sigh of relief and we continued on our shopping sojourn.

As we were heading towards H & M, we saw this beautiful trouser suit in a shop window - Warehouse Direct for £10.98 and there was a buy one get one free offer going on too. I made a side comment that when you see such offers, you never get them in large sizes as they're only available in Sizes 6 - 10 but we decided to go into the shop and browse. To say that we were shocked when we got into the shop is an understatement. Beautiful clothes, shirts and other items of clothing going at ridiculous prices. Not only were there large sizes, we were able to get size 20 skirts suits and trouser suits also and the shirts were so beautiful and £10.99 too with a Buy One Get One Free (BOGOF) offer too. Now, I'm not admitting I am a size 20. Remember the guy is shopping for his wife not me. (smile) To say that we chartered things from that shop is another understatement also. We picked and choose and picked and picked and smiled all the way to the paying counter/till. The things were so cheap it was too good to be true. And the suits were Dorothy Perkins suits with the labels still intact - no flaws or anything of the sort on the clothes. We just had to ask why the reduced prices and then the BOGOF offer on top of it all. The shop assistants mentioned that Primark was opening next door to them in the spring and so they were closing down to refurbish their shop in readiness for the competition they would be getting from Primark. Thank God for Primark moving to Oxford Street - I have gained wonderfully from it even before they opened the shop.

So now I'm back home and my feet are killing me seriously. But it was a day well spent - very well spent if I may add.