Tuesday, December 1, 2009

A quick 'get-away'

Today, to give myself a treat for the ad nauseum bout of supermarket shopping yesterday, I went to Shin Kong Place for lunch and a walk-around. Actually, the main reason for going was to look for Wayne’s birthday present. Since he’s not in town, it was a good chance for me to look for something suitable.

We did not have much of a celebration, much less a birthday present, on his birthday last year in Singapore, as Rosabelle was only about 1.5 months old (no excuse still, right?...), and I gave him a lunch treat at Fish & Co in United Square, where he enjoyed the fish and chips, and the dessert after. My sis also got Wayne a birthday cake, but Rosabelle was hungry-whining during the birthday song-singing, so uncooperative! (By the way, that was me with the 56-7kg post-pregnancy weight/flabby arms that I took forever to shed!)
This year, thought I’d go for the works and get him a birthday cake to celebrate at home, settling on an orange mousse one from 21cake. I wanted the whisky or brandy one, then decided that Rosabelle might also want a bite of the cake. Not deciding to serve alcohol to minors, no matter in how minute a quantity, I then ordered a child-friendly one.
However, the folks at 21cake scr^wed up. I’d used Wayne’s 21cake card (so as to accumulate points for redemption off purchases), since he had ordered a cake from them for my birthday. I reminded them to correspond with me, and left my mobile number (how stupid would it be if they called Wayne to confirm the order, right?), and no sooner had I hung up the phone then did Wayne forward me the confirmation SMS he got from the ‘automated system’ to confirm my order of his birthday cake. Sheesh! You can imagine the tongue-lashing I gave the customer service folks when I called them after!

Luckily, I happily managed to get a suitable gift for my husband at Shin Kong – he doesn’t really read my blog (‘So wordy! I only look at the photos at times…’), but just in case, you will see what I got him on 9 December itself. I have also made reservations at a hotel restaurant (again, to be revealed on the day itself, just in case he reads the blog!) for dinner on that day, of course Rosabelle will be at home with the nanny. I’m looking forward to it, albeit the silly cake surprise is spoilt - #$@%^!!!

At Shin Kong, I also went to Panasonic Centre to copy the videos we took the week before. It’s a blue-screen technology, where Wayne and I carried Rosabelle to take two different videos of us doing ‘green earth’ things, similar to when my family was in town. If Rosabelle looks puzzled here, that’s because she was staring up at a blank blue screen with moving yellow circles, and wondering why her Mum and Dad seem so excited!

I also had a nice lunch at Ajisen Ramen, a restaurant that I ate at almost every other day when my office was at SOHO New Town. It’s been more than a year since I had my favourite dish of kimchi beef hot pot, and it still tastes super yummy! (It helped that I purposely ran my errands and did my shopping first to avoid the crazy lunch-time crowd.

I then ended with a bit of high-end supermarket (yes, again!!!) shopping to get that elusive kai lan and cai xin, and managed to finally land my hands on watercress (yaaay!) too, so Rosabelle can try some tonight. It’s high in iron as well, so at least she will have an alternative to spinach. I even got a Beard Papa cream puff home for tea, yummy! I had originally bought another cream puff for the nanny, but after Rosabelle awoke from her afternoon nap and refused to go beyond one slice of mangosteen (just as well – it costs RMB6 per fruit here now!), I decided to give her a treat and not surprisingly, she liked the sweet taste of the vanilla cream, haha!

What a nice, leisurely afternoon out, where it was almost narrowly marred by a very dishonest cab driver. Since last week, Beijing cab fares have risen (oil prices…), and we need to pay an extra dollar on top of the metered fare only if it goes beyond 3km (i.e. only if it goes beyond RMB10, from RMB11 up). My cab fare to Shin Kong was only RMB10, so I gave the driver RMB20, and he asked ‘Do you have one dollar?’, wanting to ask me to pay him RMB21 so he can give me RMB10 in change. So I replied, ‘Isn’t it a dollar more only if my fare is RMB11 and above?’, and he kept quiet. Sheesh, the cheek of it! If only I had the time, and only if he had not picked me up from home, I’d make sure the cab company hears of his dishonest attempt at siphoning RMB1 from me – some people really take me for a 傻老外 ah?!

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