Wednesday, 5 December 2018

John Lewis & Partners Christmas Advert 2018 - #EltonJohnLewis

Yay! My not-so-favourite time of the year has come. It's that time of the year for those loathsome Christmas adverts.

Ok John Lewis. What have you got for us this year? I have nothing against Elton John (we share the same birthay!), the advert has one of The Beatles classic songs "Golden Slumbers" - I no doubt love this song as I've heard it so many times when MummyGeek listens to the radio... The advert tells the story of Elton John, his past and down to when he was a young boy when he received a piano as a Christmas present...

I loved the song and I liked the ending, but I think it doesn't top the Christmas adverts of adverts past. 😑

This year I'm giving ratings:

Imagination:           ⭐⭐☆☆☆
Is it Christmasy?:   ⭐☆☆☆☆
My geeky rating:    ⭐⭐☆☆☆

It' a 2-star rated Christmas ad!

Tuesday, 4 December 2018

Baby B Turns 3

Wooow! I can't believe Baby B is now 3! She continues to walk, talk and grow. She's now like a moody woman in a body of a three year old. 😂😂😂

Her cake-making uncle is amazing! This year he made this Paw Patrol car. Yep Baby B loves Paw Patrol (but I know that she loves Peppa Pig and lots of other things too). 

So as a Baby and a Godmother day out, we went to London Zoo. On the way there she accidentally came out of the pram whilst I was taking her off the bus! I hadn't strapped her in... I think I would be an awful parent if had a baby. So sorry Baby B!! I promise to get you a Kinder Egg for Christmas!!

Recently Baby B has been watching The Lion King episodes on TV, so she's loving zoo animals at the moment...

She was afraid of the tigers... LOL! And she so wanted to see some baby lions but said the male lion was Sinbad. 😑

And she seems to like cars. (All she needs to learn is to share with other people!). I hope she learns how to drive when she's 18, so that she can start driving her parents around... Fingers crossed.

After a couple of tantrums, a ride on the merry-go-round, popcorn and playing in the playground, plus going around the zoo many times, it was time to go home. It was very cold that day. Brrrrrrr.

Here's hoping Baby B has a very, very long life... I hope there'll be no more accidents when I look after her again. Hahahahaha!


Monday, 3 December 2018

Koi Ramen @ Pop Brixton - London, Brixton Station Road

My public sector job has a very high turnover. Reason: yearly rotas across the UK! If you knew where I work, you would understand... I have another 3 months and 3 weeks to go before I leave them. 14+ years is a very long time in one company!

Well, it's again the end of another rota, and again another get together for some awesome people! First we had ended up in a bar in Brixton - a change of scenery they said! OMG! Here we're just catching the sunset at the top of a bar...

Finally food time! I feel like this year I haven't had enough food to blog about. 😕 I'm spending my money and time on driving, plus trying to be stress free and also saving for my next holiday! Next year I promise to do a bit more! (Let's just hope I pass my driving test by the end of the year!).

Anyway, Pop Brixton has a variety of foods in this mall-like diner. It was quite difficult to find a massive table for us, luckily some people were leaving, and we managed to grab a table. A long one.

I was craving ramen. I love ramen. And I knew I just had to have a bowel from Koi Ramen Bar. It was one of those hit and miss opportunities. 

So what did I choose? The tonkotsu ramen with an extra slice of tonkotsu, and a full set of gyoza plus a beer!

With Koi Ramen they add the toppings for you, so if you're allergic to anything, make sure to let the peeps know! Itadakimasu! 

The ramen was cooked a bit soft (a bit too soft to my liking). I tend to like my noodles to be al-dente. The slices of pork were a little on the thin side. The soup was ok, I drank it all as it's been a little while since I've had tonkotsu soup from a restaurant. 😅 Gyozas were ok.

So one of my colleagues decided to treat me with this bun. I miss my past colleagues. They were all so nice to me... and I was kind of mean to some of them behind their backs... (should not try and do that in the future - but some do deserve my somewhat hatred towards them). Anyway, back to this bun!
It was overly topped up with so many ingredients that it was hard to tell what this is! A very messy experience!!

Overall price came to £17! Not inluding the Vietnamese bun. Reasonable price.

My geeky rating: 4.5/5

Good points:
- Located in a very local place and good to experience a variety of different foods
- If you're craving some cheap ramen around the area, this is an ok spot to try
- Nice pork soup!

Bad points:
- Ramen was too soft!

Address: 49 Brixton Station Road, Brixton, London SW9 8PQ
Tel: 07796 463972


Sunday, 2 December 2018

Uncle Lim's Kitchen (Malaysian Food) - Croydon Whitgift Centre

Fairly quick post.

Was trying to trace where my grandfather had worked in Croydon (plus do some shopping... needed a bus ride and time to do some reading as well, so ended up in Croydon). It was definitely inside a shopping centre in Croydon, and there was once a Chinese restaurant MummyGeek used to go to visit a few times... I was wondering whether it could where Uncle Lim's Kitchen is located... It looks like there could have been a Chinese restaurant there... 

Well, I hardly eat Malaysian food, so this was my chance to eat Hainan Chicken Rice!

The Hainan Chicken Rice was quite hard to spot on the menu. It was like near the bottom of the list. It's not too expensive. It looks like there's only three pieces of chicken in the picture, but there's a few more pieces hidden... 

There's a lot of soy sauce in this dish, so it was a little salty towards the end of eating this dish. The rice definitely tasted as if there was chicken broth. It's definitely not plain white rice.

The server  almost forgot my Malaysian coffee... aaaah... coffeeee!

Finished! But couldn't finish the last bits of rice. Too salty! It's definitely a popular dish as I could see a few people had ordered this.

Overall a nice quiet experience before a rush of people came to eat.
Total came to less than £10. Nice lunch!

My geeky rating: 4.5/5

Good points: 
- Nice and spacious retaurant
- Food was ok, apart from too much soy sauce!
- Nice coffee too!
- Inexpensive

Bad points:
- Just the soy sauce really... wish I had more of the chicken though!

Address: Unit 1123-1124, Whitgift Centre, N End, Croydon CR0 1UZ
Tel: 020 8688 8378

Saturday, 1 December 2018

Kanaloa Bar with Mr Games and co.

Before the Christmas ads, here's some odd posts from the middle of the year. 

Mr Games turned 1 year older this year (as we all have - the majority!). He decided to have his party a the Kanaloa Bar with is all the way near Blackfriars Bridge... He made us walk there, and he lied and said it will only take us 20 minutes to walk! It was almost a 40 minute walk from Elephant and Castle... The person I felt sorry for was Mr Sensible who did the whole shabang and dressed up as a dragon or was it Barney? LOL!

Most dressed up, and some of us just had some video game t-shirts on (I thank Uniqlo this summer for adding a PAC-MAN t-shirt into their collections!)

You must bring some sort of ID before entering the club...

The bar is a Hawaiian theme place, and I think Mr Games had pre-ordered some of the food and drinks...

A very fruity and alcoholic punch...

I didn't do much of the dancing. I'm a lazy geek. But the group had a lot of fun in their costumes!

Well I stayed till the end. I think it's the end of the road with clubbing for me... I felt my age in that club!

Mr Games, please choose something modest next year!! 😅

Address: Hill House, Wine Office Court, 18 Shoe Lane, London EC4A 3BQ
Telephone: 020 7842 0620


Thursday, 22 November 2018

Gourmet Travels in Shenzhen - Day 17: The Return Home

Friday 13th July 2018

My last day on this holiday! (I've really missed the foooood since I've come back).

Couldn't resist another bowl of abalone and pork congee! Yeeeee... Have to wait for another time to eat this!! It's always worth the wait!

After check out that morning. I took the Airbus all the way to the airport. I was a tiny bit early, so I went around. MummyGeek told me I should find an elastic band thingy for my suitcase in case it gave way to the zip... I didn't bother buying one in the end. They were too expensive! 

Before checking in I decided to weigh my suitcase on the free weighing scales - yes, you can find them near the check in desks, and they're basically on the floor. Mine was over 2kg, so I decided to take a few things out... 

After check in (the queuing was better than the queuing in France!!) I went and sat in any space I could to take a deep breath and relax... Trying to find something to eat was hard. The Chinese food section was under renovation, so I had to settle with a chicken burger. 😣 Maybe another time I can eat the Chinese food at the airport... Boooooo!!

The weather was still bad outside which caused a delay with our flight time...

It was well after 2pm before we could board our flight, I think one of the typhoons or heavy rain was on its way into HK...

I queued quite diligently with an old couple flying into London to visit friends. I just knew when to queue before the flight happens. LOL! I used the Cathay Pacific app to board the flight whereas a lot of people seemed to use paper boarding tickets. I'm trying to mordernise here! 

I sat next to an New Zealand couple at the very back of the plane and talked to them briefly about our lives... They had travelled for a long time before getting onto the London flight... Tiring!

The flight was probably one of the best I've been on. Food was ok. No babies screaming. No children running off. No Chinese people doing bad things except for one man just being nosey! I watched a lot of foreign stuff... And I tried so hard to doze off... so hard...

Well I arrived in London on the same day in the evening... It was still Friday... I wasn't in a hurry to get off the plane after landing, and since I have a British passport whereas the majority of the people on the flight were foreign... 

It looked like I had left the airport before most of the people. Took a black cab home who kind of got lost, but anyway, I tipped this person.

And that's the end of this holiday trip to China. 😆

End of Day 17!!

Next holiday booked for March-April 2019 ... I feel lucky coz I quit my job in the right time before my next holiday!

Wednesday, 21 November 2018

Gourmet Travels in Shenzhen - Day 16: Back in Hong Kong + 17th Floor Hotel Review

Almost pain free from my wisdom tooth extraction! And I've managed to quit my job in the public sector! Yay! OMG, it's been such a palava in this past year, I think it's time for me to gooooo.... Go, go, go!!

Thursday 12th July 2018

Gosh it rained in Shezhen on my last morning. There was no way it was going to stop and it looked like there was going to be major floodings (which I think there was).

First thing in the morning was to eat brekkie, and I can't remember what I had... Mrs Travels mother bought a few things for to take home, but I think I would have outweighed my luggage allowance. LOL. One of the things she got me was a big bag of lychee and I came across this bunny shaped one. So cute!
At the very end, they booked a taxi for me, but the driver didn't even attempt to help me put my luggage in the trunk, I hugged Mrs Travels goodbye. No tip for the driver she said. Hahahahah.

I got to the border within half-an-hour I think. It felt forever because of the rain. Again the driver didn't even attempt to get out and help with my luggage! Definitely no tip for this man!! I followed the people going into the border part but I had to find a way to get to the next floor down... Whilst I was attempting to go down the stairs... the zip (already broken) fell apart and my luggage spilled. I had to quickly re-arrange everything... Mrs Travels had already warned me that I should sew up the ends when I get to Hong Kong. SIGH 😢 It was tough work... where was the frigging lift!!

Anyway, I crossed the border in no time. Bye bye Shenzhen! This was the longest time I've spent in Mainland China. See you again in the future!

So at Lo Wu Station (the Hong Kong side), I topped up my Octopus card and I off I went to my next location! I took the train to Shatin, I stood the whole journey by the way... So many travellers coming back into Hong Kong that day. Then from there I took a taxi to my usual hotel, Regal Riverside... For some reason I tipped the driver, I just wanted to get in the hotel and relax...

Luckily the reception was able to give me a room before check in time, so first things first find the room, go and eat, plus buy lots of snacks for the night!

I've missed eating this abalone congee... Can't beat it!

Swiftly moving onto the snack snack section. I think I have missed 7Eleven a bit!!! I wanted to try any new-ish snacks... Like the Doritos Wasabi flavour - that was an awful mistake. There was hardly any wasabi flavour... Had a lot of drinks... and had a few sweets. I reserved my stomach for dinner that evening...

After snacking I went out again to the New Plaza and did some HK Shopping... into the old and new buildings... I bought a lot of Aji Ichiban stuff for my parents - they're almost finished. I needed it to make the most of my luggage weight of 30kg! 😉

Unfortunatly my hand luggage decided to collapse into pieces. I think I've had it for two decades, so it was time to throw it in the bin. Well luckily MummyGeek told me over the phone (WeChat and WhatsApp are the most useful apps at this point) to go and buy one of these storage bags in the local stationery shop... I even found needles and thread to fix my suitcase. So lucky I have a mother who nags me a bit in such circumstances. 😅

Dinner was roast pork and char sui with rice from the usual place BBQ King. I think the workers remembered me, they probably thought why I was alone. Hehehehehe.

So the main reason I couldn't buy a lot of snacks was because I had a big bag of lychees to eat... Mrs Travels sister-in-law showed us a way of how to peel without having to use your fingernails to dig into the fruit. If you look closely at the fruit, there's a line, and that's where you push and pull against to open it. So clever!

I ate a whole bag of lychee!! They were so sweet!!

That's practically the end of the food section...

Hotel Review - On the 17th Floor in Regal Riverside Hotel

Regal Riverside Hotel is just one of those hotels that I'm used to staying in... I decided to book directly from their website. It was a bit expensive for the one night, but I hadn't spent much in China... So it was worth it....

The receptionist put in a double room on the 17th Floor. When I was close to my room, I thought there was an invisible wall I needed to get through in the hallway! It felt like there was a reflection of the corridor that I couldn't pass... extraordinary!

All was good with the bed, bathroom, wardrobe etc. Even the TV being on the ceiling was fine. The view was ok. Pretty amazed compared to the superior rooms! I had a small fridge I could use which was well hidden in the wardrobe.

The nice wet view outside...

The only problem I had with the room was the loud aircon noise in the evening... It was so loud. I probably only slept for 5 hours. Less than what I had done in China. :(

So tired... I think I missed my sleep on this holiday... It's the only thing I really missed.

End of Day 16.

Thursday, 15 November 2018

Gourmet Travels in Shenzhen - Day 15: The Last Shenzhen Supper

Wednesday 11th July 2018

I decided around two or three days before I leaving Shenzhen, I wanted to go back to Hong Kong for a day... So this was my final day in Shenzhen. Mrs Travels and family were off to the suburbs of Guangdong, and I didn't want to really be left alone in a big home. I felt happy that I reconciled with the girls. 

So for breakfast, Mrs Travels and I went out with mischievious Missy A. She reminds me of Baby B a lot, a spitting image of her behaviour.🤣 We went around a few streets just looking around and deciding what to eat... Missy A was a little fascinated with the processing of soya bean milk. I love fresh soya milk!

So I had a lot to eat! As well as fried dough and soya milk (and from memory Mrs Travels bought cheung fun as well), I had a couple of steam buns. One char siu and the other was a veggie one.

They look so doughy from the outside and a little meaty on the inside. My breakfast was inexpensive... take me back to Shenzhen...!

The last night in Shenzhen meant I needed to eat my last lot of midnight snacks.

This is black stinky tofu. It didn't stick as much as the one in Hong Kong. I ate the whole lot... there were so many pieces!

Black colouring on the outside.

White and tofu looking on the insid.

I didn't realise I had to eat these noodles too... 

And some pan-fried bread... So stuffed!!

Goodnight to Shenzhen!

End of Day 15.