Onam, Open-Air Ballet & Como | 2808-030917

Cactus Flower. The image above features the blooming cactus outside our street door. As this is the second time I see the flower, I think it’s in bloom bi-annually, and I’m just as impressed as I was half a year ago, haha. Such a pretty and classic reminder, if I needed any, that we live in the tropics 🙂

Golden Hour. Walking home monday in the mild evening sunlight, after a long afterwork swim at the gym, smiling at all the offerings for the Hungry Ghost around town, trying out having my phone on flight mode as default, only switching it off when necessary (lol), finding it necessary ten minutes into my walk for some reason, and immediately receive a message from S, which must be a sign. He’s at home on the balcony, enjoying the golden hour and wondering what I’m up to. 15 minutes later we soak in the light of the last 30 minutes before the sun disappears (it still fascinates me how quickly it goes this close to equator!) at Tiong Bahru Club, sitting outside on the pavement and toasting in a glass of wine, eating dal, plain naan and spicy cucumber salad. Half of the time, I’m on my phone with one of my closest friends, who is in New York on a worktrip. She’s enjoying the sunrise on a morning walk through Central Park. As we hang up, I receive a few photographs from my parents on WhatsApp – they’re drinking lunchtime cava on the beach promenade in Albir, Spain. Flight mode on again – flight mode off in my brain; it’s lovely to keep up with good stuff going on in America and Europe right now, but it’s also pretty great to be right where I am: in my hood with my favourite person.

Last Month in My Twenties. How does that make me feel? I rarely think/worry about my age, and I’ve rarely ever set expectations or goals for myself, so there’s nowhere I’d want to be at any given point; but I’m still happy to recognise that there’s nowhere I’d rather be at this point – physically, mentally etc. I feel very happy and fortunate. And even if I don’t speculate too much about age, I am still a child when it comes to birthdays: they give me butterflies in my stomach. My next one is exactly one month away. How and where will I celebrate this month? I want to be conscious in my actions and observations. Bold, kind and non-judgmental. I want to explore, discover and allow myself to day dream. I’m going to enjoy every moment of it – in Singapore, Australia, Hong Kong and Bali, with S by my side most of the time.

Housewarming. On Wednesday evening, my friend invites me and another friend over for dinner in her new pad, a giant ground floor apartment in one of the cute old shophouses on Spottiswoode Park Road, right by Blair Road. There’s a pool inside the house – right between the livingroom and the bedroom. We have tapas and wine by the pool and chat and laugh for hours. So nice.

Home Cooked. I make shukshaka one night; S makes lamb chops and vegan mashed potatoes another night. We drink wine and talk and are quiet and listen to music. Ahhh… 

Friday. It is a bank holiday, but I’m working for home in order to take the Friday after my birthday off instead (in Bali). It’s a beautifully sunny day, and as soon as we wake up and have done our exercises on the balcony (I do my physio program; S does a series of stretches), we go for a long walk along the river, down to the lush little sanctuary by Alexandra Road. After that, it’s ok to sit inside all day. Around lunch time, we pop out to Tiann’s, where S has a savory chia seeds and almond flour waffle with scrambled eggs and I a quinoa veggie bibimbap and grassy unsweetened matcha almond drink under the skylight of the pretty little cafe. At 6:30pm, I finish my workday and we pop out again, this time to the lovely spa, Nimble/Knead,  next door, for a luxurious 1-hour couple’s massage. After dinner, and a bottle of wine, we fall asleep right after watching this Ted Talk.

Saturday. Shortly after waking up, I walk over to do a series of sun salutations in the small local park, picking up flowers from the market for S and coffee from the bakery for me on the way home. Make us a light breakfast of fresh mango cut in pieces drizzled with dried coconut flakes, ground cinnamon and lime juice. We’re both writing all morning, sitting across from each other at the dining table and typing away concentrated, looking up from time to time to exchange a smile or a thought. Around noon, we go to the gym for an hour of cycling, lunging, leg pressing and swimming in the outdoor pool. The sun is shining, and I feel so grateful that such a small thing as coming here can feel like such a treat – it’s lovely to see how far I’ve come with my rehab, and it’s lovely how spectacular this particular gym is – high above sea level, with a panorama view of iconic shophouses and modern glass and steel masterpieces around the marina bay, the river and small green spaces. From there, we go to Little India, which is getting its party elephants ready for Diwali (see below), for a lovely banana leaf meal at one of the only Kerali restaurants in town, in celebration of the Kerala harvest festival, Onam, one of S’s favourite traditions. In the evening, we meet up with a couple of friends for Ballet under the Stars in Fort Canning Park, one of the loveliest things I’ve ever experienced in this country – walking through the lush, hilly park in the golden hour, finding our friends in front of the huge stage, spreading out and sharing a lovely picnic, the incredibly impressive dancers, the music, the skyline backdrop and moon above, the fresh air, grass under our feet… wow!

Sunday. Homemade smoothie bowls. Writing all morning. Going to Dempsey together – that beautifully lush and luxurious area! Checking out the newly opened Dover Street Market, walking down winding paths among the greenery, having lunch at light and airy Como Cuisine – deliciously moist activated charcoal and spiraling bread with tomato relish, raw salad with an apple cider vinaigrette, cauliflower crisp bread covered in cashew hummus and pomegranate seeds, green juices and coconut milk flat white – under the many plants hanging from the roof and breaking up the slightly sterile white space in the most elegant way possible. YUM. After picking up some treats for a light dinner at home, we go to Bugis to spend the afternoon at Intercon, S working and I reading Monocle at our usual spot in the lobby. Late in the evening, I walk S down into the street for one of our long, good hugs. He disappears into an uber and travels to Melbourne. I go back upstairs and put on Game of Thrones, having saved the last two episodes of the 7th season for the occasion.

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