31 December 2012

Don't let the bed bugs bite!

Yesterday went by rather quickly.

Started off the same, with my alarm at 10 so I didn't miss breakfast. I came down and had my eggs on toast while Gem kept on sleeping. When I came back she was still asleep so I jumped on bed for a nap. Next thing ya know it's 12.30! She still wouldn't wake up so I fell back asleep till 1.30pm when I woke her properly so we didn't waste the rest of the day.

We went for a swim, got dressed and started walking to Chaweng. Stopped at a massage parlor along the way for a full body oil massage - the best I've had yet and the entire salon had a giggle at some guy who didn't want his feet touched but had to have them washed before the massage. He giggled the whole way through then lied down in the bed next to us. Through te curtain w could hear the Thai girls giggling and he asked 'what are you two giggling at' she replied 'ahh nice muscles yes!' and he replied with a very smug 'thank you' to the laughter of the rest of the salon.

After our communal giggle session we wandered down the rest of the way to the beach and did some shopping. I didn't buy much. I bought so much crap I never used on my last Thai holiday I know not to go crazy.

Next up we met the girls for dinner at Thai Orchard. Spring rolls, green curry, coconut rice and cocktails.

I was really keen to check out a Lady Boy show and a gay couple (who also dress as Lady Boys in Brisbane) suggested we hit up Moulin Rouge. Free entry with a $10 drink purchase. The show was amazing. Some of them looked like models. Gorgeous. One did Madonna and had the entire venue grooving with her while another did Gangham Style. They also did the half man, half lady performance and the 'I did it my way' where they start as a Lady Boy and undress themselves on stage to display what they really look like. Love that one.

Decided on a early night in bed. Went to sleep about midnight after reading. Well at least I tried.
I felt a bite on my foot (even though I'd sprayed insect repellant) and didn't think much of it. Then the burning and itching started. It was really sore so I got up for a look and a huge welt had formed on the edge of my foot. I was msging and friend who informed me it looked very much like bed bugs. I tried to go back to sleep again but ended up with 6 more bites along my wrist and my elbow. They kept me awake for so long plus I was considering going to reception and asking them to kindly remake my bed. Gemma wouldn't have a bar of it and told me to just go to sleep. Eventually I must have drifted off and woke up to find they have all disappeared. Very strange.

30 December 2012

Just relaxxx

Usually I jam pack my holiday full of everything that is available to me in that area. This time however all I want to do is chill out. Lie in the sun. Swim. Get massages, pedicures, manicures. Drink some cocktails.

I have been doing pretty damn well on the cocktail front! I like the maitais. Mainly as I can't taste the ridiculous amount of alcohol they put in the drinks. I nearly gaged on my attempt at a vodka lime and soda last night! Sipped a whole mouthful of vodka then was so surprised I managed to spill it all over the entire table. Back to maitais I went.

Yesterday all we did was hang out. We swam, read and sunbathed. Tried to kayak but they were all booked out. Headed into main Chaweng for a massage ad to meet my other friends.

Dinner was amazing again. We have been introduced to this random dish called Laab. It's pork with lime, chilli
and mint. I don't love the chilli but it's so good! For a main I had garlic pepper prawns and rice - the garlic was all crisp and crackly. Melted in your mouth.

We drank on the beach again, dancing in the sand and drinking from buckets until 2am when Ark Bar shut. Next up, Green Mango. We have found our regulars already.

3am, the club shuts and the rain started pretty heavy. Thankfully there were heaps of Tuk Tuks around to take us home quickly.

Hoping to go to a Lady Boy show tonight and check out the Muay Thai boxing, there's a huge stadium just up the road.

Ark Bar Chaweng
Green Mango Chaweng

29 December 2012

Samui, we're here!

After 14hours of flying and almost the same waiting we finally made it to Koh Samui!

Of course, at 4pm our room wasn't made up so we had to wait around for 20mins but that's okay when you can lie at the beach!

Our room is very cute. Almost like a little hut! We are a taxi ride from the main part of Chewang beach but that's okay. It only cost about $3!

So the first thing I did was get a massage! Not quite the relaxing experience I had hoped.. She pushed and prodded me for an hour. I'm sure I feel better for it today however.

We then met up with my girlfriend and her mate who are staying in central Chewang at Ark Bar. The place is pumping! Bars, pool bars, people everywhere. I wish we had stayed there - it's cheaper too.

Dinner was delish and just what I wanted as I was feeling a little delicate.. Pad See Ew, or fried noodles with lots of lime. So cheap too with two cocktails it was about $13AUD. We continued on at the bar on the beach, watching the fireworks display and the lanterns floating up out above the ocean. Beautiful.

Then everything gets a but messy - the fire throwers come out, fire eaters and eventually the fire skipping rope! Wasted people, usually men, try and jump the flaming rope, always unsuccessfully. Great entertainment for us watching but they must wake up pretty sore in the morning!

Losing the girls saw us end up at  Green Mango, a pretty big open air club with the music pumping. We had a dance then decided it was time for McDonalds then home. So happy to find I could haves cheeseburger and bottle of water as per usual but this time consumed in a tuk tuk!

Great night. And with that I'm off to jump in the pool as I look like I have already been swimming!

27 December 2012

And we're off!

Well by we're I mean I...
I hope Gemma is too but with her in Perth and me in NZ I can't be entirely sure.

So my bags are packed, and I've said my goodbyes. God I hate goodbyes. Or see ya later as we like to call them. So many mixed emotions. I'm usually happy to be going to my next destination but sad to be leaving my family again. Especially after Christmas. But we had an awesome relaxed time together :)

Anyway so my lil bro bought me a cuddle buddy for Christmas. An elephant. I fricken love it. It's suppose to be a pillow but it's so damn soft and furry I just wana cuddle it and stroke it. Thanks Bro! Will keep me snugly all the way to Thailand.

Which is a fair way with 4 flights.
Palmy to Auckland
Auckland to Kuala Lumpur
Kuala Lumpur to Phuket
Phuket to Koh Samui

I have bought some random water stuff which is supposed to cure/prevent jet lag. If I'm honest, I just couldn't be bothered walking to the other vending machine with the water and this was much more closer and convenient.

Can't wait to get there finally and lie in the sun with a cocktail while getting a massage. Bliss :)

Hope the weather holds out!

24 December 2012

Student Flatting

Being in my home town means I spend a bit of time with my little bro's . And at 21 and 17 almost all their mates are students.

So we headed to my bro's mate's flat for some pre-drinks before 'town'. I don't think I need to say much more after you see the pics but lets just say I never flatted like this and damn am I glad!

Kim sampling rotten nuggets

Me scoffing mouldy pasta

19 December 2012

Bootay Shaking & Ridiculous Dancers, J Lo World Tour

To be honest I didn’t have high expectations for this show.. I am not a J Lo fan but we got free tickets from work and thought it would be a fun girls night out.

Firstly, she took AGES to come out. A good 45 mins to an hour. I know she’s a mega star but don’t keep the crowd waiting. It doesn’t build anticipation, it creates boredom. There was also a massive amount of Vidal Sassoon ads and a formal wear shop ad. Replayed over, and over again. Annoying.

The bootay. The bootay isn’t as great as I expected considering it is insured for a stupid amount. However, she is very good at shaking it!!

The abs. Wow. She’s, 45 (ish?), has had twins and those abs are incredibly defined. I can only hope to be so ripped at 45. Actually I could only hope to be that ripped now! Would require a lot of dedication. But when your body is partly your business, the dedication would be more than worth the results.

The dancers. Hell, if I was J Lo, I would keep one for myself too. God Damn they are ridiculously good looking and ripped. I had to stop myself from nearly drooling. I want to be a singer just so I can have an entourage of amazing male dancers.

All in all a good show. She can sing, dance and she’s gorgeous. She put a massive amount of energy into the show.

On a side note though, how many capes with feathers does one woman need?!

16 December 2012

Sick on a Sunday

Whenever I am ill I revert back to being a child.
I want my Mum and I want my Dad and I want cuddles.

This morning I woke up feeling rather sick in my stomach... my first thought was, 'did I drink that much last night?' As I had planned on only going out for a few and as far as I could remember had kept to my plan. But my stomach was certainly churning. Annddd I was going to be sick.

Anyway I spent the next few hours with my head over the toilet wishing someone would come and look after me. I realised a few things in my state, firstly that I hate spewing. And eating toast when you're sick is never smart as it WILL come straight back up. And also that my bathroom floor needs to be mopped.

Who needs to do sit ups when you can just spew your way to toned abs?! My tummy is so sore now! Feel like I've done a thousand of them.

On the plus side I looked rather slim in my dress this evening at my Christmas function as I sipped on water and watched everyone else get drunk! I do not pity them and their hangovers at work tomorrow!

15 December 2012

Ginga - average at best

We visited Ginga on my Birthday, after roaming aimlessly around South Bank and deciding on Japanese.

Really disappointed.

Edamame was over cooked. The shell was falling apart.

When I enquired as to whether someone had an iPhone charger that I could place my phone on the staff looked at me like I was crazy.

Staff weren't attentive, I had to keep asking them to come over, very stand offish.

We ordered bento boxes and with the amount of cheap, fresh and delicious Japanese places around Brisbane you would assume you woulf get something decent for $30.
The teriyaki chicken was very dry and mine was partially cold. The tempura tasted oily and the dipping sauce has little flavor. Miso however was nice and so was the scallop.

I wouldn't eat here again, especially with so many other nicer places around South Bank.

  Ginga Restaurant on Urbanspoon

13 December 2012

Cha Cha Charming

Cha Cha Char lives up to all that I have heard. It's a nice restaurant, with great, attentive service and fantastic food.

You will notice that half the pics I have here have already been slightly demolished. The meals were so scrumptious I kept forgetting to take pics!

We chose a bottle of New Zealand (of course, I'm ever patriotic) pinot gris, and by we, I mean Sean chose us a lovely bottle of wine!

We were given a complimentary tapas plate.. not sure what it was now but it was a nice gesture.

The wait staff were lovely, and always filling our wine glasses. Maybe that's why I liked them so much? Luckily they ensured my water glass was always full too.

So we started by sharing an entrée of half a dozen oysters, done in pairs in different ways. There was the 'natural oyster' with lemon, a wagyu oyster which was topped with minced chilli wagyu... surprisingly nice, I liked it considering I don't enjoy mince or much chilli! And of course your kilpatrick oyster, done to perfection. Could have easily gone another half dozen! Or three...

For my entrée I had the scallops with chorizo and mash. Equally as delish as the oysters. Scallops melted in my mouth and I even enjoyed the chorizo and mash which aren't usually high on my list!

For my main I went for the crab ravioli with morton bay bugs. As far as I was concerned that was all that was on the menu. I know it's a 'steak' restaurant, and don't get me wrong, I love steak. But put something like that in front of me and I'm gonna choose it! It did not disappoint. The pasta was perfectly cooked, the filling amazing and the morton bay bug perfection. Needless to say I was pretty impressed with my meal.

Not sure if I need to put a disclaimer on about drinking half a bottle of wine and perhaps my senses being partially blurred here.. however I do think if I had it again minus the bottle of wine I would still be just as impressed.

Sean, of course, went for a steak. He was impressed, and the man knows his steaks! He even liked the sides that accompanied his meal. Maybe that was the wine too?

Sean was most impressed with the ceiling fans.. they ran on a connected belt across the ceiling. Not entirely sure why this was impressive but men like strange things so I guess we will just put it down to that!

We mmm'd and ahhh'd about desert before finally deciding on the choice we both knew we would eventually come to, yes we would indulge. I chose the toasted marshmallow with warm poached pear... mmm it was like being at a camp fire but without the cold wind, wet ground and with poached pears... perhaps not so much like being by a camp fire at all.

Worth a visit if only for the crab ravioli and oysters!

Cha Cha Char on Urbanspoon

11 December 2012

Kokoro Bento, South Brisbane deliciousness

I discovered this new little Japanese place while hunting down the IGA in South Brisbane.

Now, by now, if you read my blog, you will know that I LOVE gyoza. So maaannn was I happy when I stumbled across this place and they do 4 delicious steamed gyoza for $3.50! They are already cooked too so you don't even have to wait for them. Convenient and delicious AND cheap!

They have a wide variation of fresh sushi rolls,  priced at $2.50 or $3.00 depending on the fill. The soft shell crab, and tempura prawn are my faves however their salmon avo, teriyaki chicken and surimi rolls are all just as good.

The tempura prawn udon noodle soup is also one of my faves and they do it very well. They have your usual selection of Japanese meals - noodles, soups,  curries and rice meals. All really reasonably priced - under $10.

The staff are lovely and efficient, you grab your own condiments, (yes the soy and wasabi is free) along with your choice of eating utensils and off you go. I haven't actually sat down to enjoy a meal here, I always get takeaway, however it looks nice and if I had time I would sit and stay but the burdens of work are forever dragging me away.

It has quickly become busy but with fresh food like this at great prices, I shouldn't really be surprised at all! My new local lunch spot :)

You can find it down an alley, 32 Cordelia Street, South Brisbane QLD 4101. Behind the convention centre. Hopefully they will get an online presence soon as they will continue to grow!

Kokoro Bento on Urbanspoon

Samui... Yoga... Bliss

I am getting super excited about my trip to Koh Samui!

It's only 17 days away now, time will fly with only 7 days of work left and then a week in NZ!

I just found this amazing Yoga studio in Koh Samui, VIKASA. It looks gorgeous. An open air studio on a hill top over looking the ocean. I doubt I will ever make the 9am class (holidays are for sleeping in) but will try make the 6pm class a few times. I  might even make an effort and wake up for a 9am class. With views like that it would be worth the lack of sleep!

I also looked into going to the Samui Aquarium and Tiger Zoo but have since read some bad reviews so perhaps not. The draw of holding a baby tiger is so strong though!! I love little, cute, cuddly things!!

I want to head out to the National Parks too and go snorkelling, they will be beautiful... ahhh...

I will stop there before I mumble on about all the things I want to do and where I want to go!

5 December 2012

Ann Gyoza Bar

Gyoza is yummy! Nice and soft and fresh but pan fried and crispy too! You’d hope so though, considering it is a gyoza joint.  It comes out on a sizzling plate, with onion and capsicum garnishes. The waitress then pours the sauce over the top, a delicious citrus, soy.  We went for the chicken and vegetable

You do have to wait a while for the dumplings to cool, which if you’re like me and impatient to eat your food, it’s hard work.

Only note would be that I thought there would be more varieties. There was no beef or duck which I would consider to be staples.

We tried the crab claw balls – they were good and then the chicken teriyaki karage. Teriyaki sauce was delicious and if my Mum was there, she would have told me off for classily dipping my finger in the bowl to get extra sauce!
We also had the edamame, which unusually, was served cold.

Staff were attentive and the décor is very Japanese, that dark wood feel their restaurants often have.

Cheap meal though, worked out to $17 each for three of us, and we were all full to pop by the time we were leaving!

Ann Gyoza Bar on Urbanspoon

3 December 2012

I'm 25, it's not my fault

I would be lying if I said I'm happy to be turning 26 on Sunday. I'm not sad as such about it but it just sounds so much older than 25.

Plus when you're 25 you can get away with heaps of stuff. It's like 'I'm 25, it's not my fault' and people are like 'well that's okay then, understandable considering your age.' Try doing that when you're 26.. Not gonna happen! I have 6 days to use this excuse.

At least in the last year I have kicked some goals. I finally made it to America, somewhere I have wanted to go for a long time and had the best trip ever. I also moved out of sports marketing and into hospitality marketing when I was head hunted for my latest position. An industry I have wanted to get into for years.

I am however, quite upset about these lines that seem to be appearing on my forehead. I don't like them very much and although everyone says that can't see them, I can. So I think I might look at getting a fringe haha.

Otherwise turning 26 isn't all that bad. It's just another day. And thankfully it's not a work day!

2 December 2012

Locked out.. AGAIN

I am so good at locking myself out, I should have at least 2 sets of house keys. Although that wouldn't help me in this situation.

I tend to lock myself out these days as I have started taking the ferry to work. So I have no need for my car key and therefore the thought that I don't have my house keys doesn't even cross my mind until I get home again in the evening, spend an hour shuffling through my ridiculously cliche handbag which is overfull with crap I don't need or use, and finally conclude that yet again I don't have my keys. Usually this ensues with a slight panic my phone is dead and I can't contact my housemates to see when they will be home. Luckily for me, 90% of the time they are not far away.

This time however is different. This time I'm just dumb.
I thought I would surprise my flatmate with a pretty sparkly Christmas tree as she is here for Christmas on her own from Scotland. So I put the tree up (mandatory singing of Aaron Neville) and realized I'd left the lights in my car. In my haste to get downstairs, get the lights (I live on the 5th floor, car in basement) and have them set up before my Flatty got home so I could have the lights off and the tree sparkling away I forgot my house keys. I thought what do I need.. Car keys, phone. Got them. Walked outside, hopped in the lift and suddenly realized I couldn't swipe down to the basement to get to my car as low and behold, I had forgotten my house keys.

Of course tonight is the one night Flatty #1 isn't home - he making an appearance at Stereosonic.
Flatty #2 is finishing her shift at the hospital and should be home in the next 20mins as I write this. However I have already been here an hour. Luckily there's a couch and free newspapers in our lobby! !

27 November 2012

Wara Wara wasabi bomb

I thought this restaurant was Korean with a Japanese influence but it seems they advertise it the other way around…

I love the fit out of this place. You walk upstairs to find a big, open space with a huge screen playing Asian pop music. There are booths all down one side with funky artwork behind them. The rest of the space are your usual wooden chairs and tables that are popular in Asian restaurants.

Thought this was funny - no I didn't dare try it!
My friend and I popped in after work at a whim, I had seen the place and wanted to visit for a while. She ordered the seafood stir fry noodles and I ordered the tempura prawn udon noodle soup, with a side of Gyoza of course!

The gyoza was delicious! I would definitely go back just for that alone. I love my gyoza and this one definitely withstood the quality and taste test!

Due to a minor communication misunderstanding, I ended up with the vegetable udon instead of the prawn. However when I explained this to them they were very sweet and apologetic getting me the prawn udon in no time. The soup was yummy, your standard udon noodle soup.

My friend’s meal was huge! The sauce was a light soy and garlic and there was calamari, fish and other seafood throughout it. The only thing that she disliked was the pippi like shell fish, but each to their own and she ate everything but!

Cute place to check out just for the atmosphere.

Warawara Izakaya on Urbanspoon