Here we go!

Month: December, 2013

My R&R 14-21 December

Saturday 14th December

Got up and had breakfast.  Saw Jacu there with his moustache.


Melvin came over and we played DOTA, then I ran to the bus which was departing at 9:15am.

Stopped at the halfway point for some nems


Got to the airport, and went into the lounge with Flore and Cyril.

Mirror selfie.


Goodbye New Caledonia (for one week).


Ate on the plane.


I watched a few documentaries on the plane.

“20 feet from stardom”, “Red Obsession”, and some other one I forgot the title.



Then approached Brisbane.



Got through immigration and customs quickly, then saw Flore and Cyril again before I transferred to the domestic terminal.


I had a few hours to spare, so spent time in the lounge, eating, drinking, showering.20131214_175532

  When it was time to leave, the announcement was made which went something like “This is the boarding call for all passengers departing for Perth, as this is the final flight tonight, the lounge is now closed, please make your way to the exit”.  So I walked to the exit.  As I walked towards the exit, all the staff lined up in 2 lines, and applauded as I walked between the two lines.  It was funny, but a bit awkward.

Sunday 15th December

Went to church in the morning.  Was very glad to be back at church.

After church, went to Cambridge forum for some Malaysian food.  Ticked a few foods off my eating-list!  Curry laksa, asam laksa, fried kuay teow.


Then I went to Galleria to pick up my new glasses, then had an early Christmas dinner party at home.


Monday 16th December

Went to the Galleria in the morning.  Had lunch at Golden King BBQ.


Looked for Christmas presents.  Saw these, but didn’t buy!


We went to Mcdonalds for icecream, then to the city.

There were ladies singing Christmas carols.


and a big Christmas tree.


The decorations were out.


Then we went to Grill’d.


We were there to meet up with Steve and Wendi.


Steve came, and we ordered our burgers. Steve’s burger came, but ours didn’t, so we waited (and ate Steve’s chips!)


Then Wendi came, and ordered, I also went inside and told them “It’s been 25 minutes now, where’s my burger?”  and the counter-man said “We had a big order come through just before”.  When Wendi received her burger, I told the man “it’s been 40 minutes now, where’s my burger?”.  Then he realised and apologised.  He refunded me and then later our burgers came out!  Another food ticked off my eating-list!


Wendi went back to work, then Steve, Julie and I, walked back to the car.  On the way back, we saw the Christmas practice.



Tuesday 17th December

On Tuesday, we got up and went to Atrium for breakfast.  However, it was busy and was told to wait 30 mins.  So we went to Gorgon Street Garage instead.


I had a barbequed salmon and a green coloured smoothie.


Then we went to Harbour town, and then to King’s Park.


After Kings Park, we had lunch at Cori anna.  물냉면 하고 비빔냉면.  Nice and cold!


Then waffles at Gelare.


We walked around the city, then went back to Northbridge, and sat at Russell Square.


Then we went to aichun.  I bought a pizza (tick!) for dinner

Wednesday 18th December

We had breakfast a Tuck Shop, I had another green smoothie.


Julie had chilli con carne, I had pork belly.



It was a heavy breakfast.  I had something to sort out, then we went to South Perth.


We had some nice cakes and drinks at Atomic cafe.



Then left.


We went to Claremont Quarters, and had a look around.  Julie bought a nice dress, and we bought some food.

We went to Broadway Fair to pick up some more food.  Everything else was closed, so we bought some noodles from a super rude lady.


Then we went to Somerville theatre at UWA, to watch a movie.  My first movie at the theatre since Armageddon.


We had a picnic, with our noodles and snacks before the movie started.



It was a beautiful outdoor area.



We watched a movie called “Mood Indigo” (L’écume des jours), it was a bit strange but a bit funny.

Thursday 19th December

We had lunch with mum at Kungfu Kitchen.


I went to move the car, and needed to go to the toilet.  So dropped by Hatch toilets, and saw ex-Koniamboites Liam and Ray.  Liam looked whiter than ever.


After, went home, and my sister, nephew and niece came over.


And we had durian!


I wanted to have icecream with the durian, so got into the car, drove to the nearest Coles and bought vanilla icecream.  I think it was less than 10 minutes.


Friday 20th December

My birthday!

Went for a haircut in the morning, it was very busy at the haircut place!


Then I went to the city to have lunch with Andre at Took bae kee 2.  We planned to meet at 11:30, but the restaurant only opened at 12.20131220_121039

It was a good catch-up.  Then I stopped by the Perth office, and saw Ray Smile  The office man now!


Walked past the Coles and saw that it had become a SUPA IGA.


As it was my birthday, mum bought me a facial at a shop in Northbridge.  It was really good.  On the way home, saw a funny carplate.  It means, FAT KID.


Then went out for dinner, my birthday dinner!






Then we went home and gave Christmas presents to Joshua and Sofia.  It was good watching them open the presents with excitement!


Saturday 21st DEcember

Went to the Galleria Shopping Centre on Saturday.  It was super busy.  Had some food at Dome, bought a couple of things, looked at brown shoes, got my new international driving permit.

Packed my things, then at night went to the airport.  Slept well on the flight to Sydney.  Lined up the long slow TRS line at Sydney airport, then went to the lounge to have a shower and breakfast.


Wait… I’ve talked about already!


Quiet Sunday

Just got back from a drive down to the shop and to Voh Gatope.

It was hot in the shop, I bought some water.  There are fireworks for sale, but I didn’t buy any.

Went to Voh Gatope for a little while, enjoyed the breeze, now I’m back.



Everyone else is either away on R&R, down in Noumea, or demobilised.

Saturday night Counter-strike

Busy afternoon at work lifting baghouse materials to elevation.  After work, had a shower then went to dinner.  After dinner, got my laptop and played Counter-strike in Salle Z with Craig, Simon, Jonathan, Greg and Michael.


Good funtimes!

27th December 2013–Farewell Paul :(

This morning, Santa-Aurelie came in with a bag of presents. She said that she picked a special one for me.


I was super busy in the morning, so didn’t open it until the afternoon, when she was in our office again.  Before opening it, I was wondering what it was, and guessing.


It wasn’t too far from a thought that crossed my mind!  It’s a cereal bar called “The Last Supper Bar”.  Apart from the cereal bar itself, inside, it had a short summary of each person in the last supper painting, how they were martyred, or died.  I liked that, history.  It also had a couple of thought-provoking WWJD statements, there’s a side of it where it could be offensive, but depends how you look at it.  Thoughtful.

Also, I received a gift from Mihi.


A Nouvelle Caledonie mug, and a lanyard!

At lunch, I saw Paul Jim – farewell!  Paul’s demobilising and going back to Canada.  I really enjoyed the past year in the presence of Paul.  He was great to talk to, particularly about photography.  I still remember the Thursday night during his first week here, when I found out he liked photography.  Though we have different subject interests, we’ve had very good discussions, he is someone who really understands and shares the same approaches.  Paul helped me make up my mind to get the A7R over the M 240 Smile I’ve learnt from him and hope to see him again.


On Thursday 26th December, Boon told me that he’s going to bring some cakes in.  After some time out on site in the morning, I dropped by his office.  Thanks BOON!



Chopping with chopsticks.


Soft sweet creamy goodness!


Even the reindeer wanted some.



and a cup of milk to go with it! CHEERS!


I took the decoration back and ornamented Andrew’s desk Smile


After work, and gym, I went to dinner, and stayed back long and late having good conversation with Boon and Flore.  Then walked by the bar on the way back to my room and saw the Christmas decoration still active.


And this morning, Mihi found the 1D lanyard I gave her for Christmas.


Christmas Night 2013

After work, I went to the gym, then to dinner.

Dinner was surprisingly nice tonight.  Salmon was good!


When I had finished, I saw Gala had fried chicken, I wanted some too, so went and got some.


It wasn’t as good as the salmon, but I ate it anyway.

Then nightshift Paul came in for dinner.  I was happy to see Paul wearing the Christmas present I left on his desk for him (the 1-direction lanyard).  Jonathan and Francois were also wearing it! haha…


Then Jacu came in, wearing a 1-direction t-shirt!


After dinner, I went to the bar to see a pre-ops/commissioning band play.


Then went to bible study with Wilson.  It was a change of venue, so only two of us, had a chat.


I am sad that Wilson is leaving this Saturday.  He is demobilising, back to Peru.  Everytime I see him, I feel happy, because he shares happiness.  I will miss him.

Feliz Navidad and your mum too!

My original R&R plan would let me be home for my Birthday and Christmas.  However, it was rejected, because I was told that I was needed here.  Why me and not others?  Maybe because they knew that I would say OK.

So today, Christmas day, was a quiet day.  Nothing much was going on.  I didn’t achieve very much.  Why am I even here?

This is me waiting for the scaffolders to come.


Anyway, to spread some Christmas happiness, I gave some presents.




1-Direction Lanyards! woo woo!  I only had enough newswrapping paper to wrap 4 of them last night.  The others were given without wrapping, or with tissues.

Jonathan showed me his wonderful PAINT skills.  This photograph below was edited by Mr Oakley himself, all credit to him!


24th December 2013–Christmas Party

Today after work, we had a special dinner for Christmas at the Canteen.  I met up with Jonathan for dinner.  Most people went out for dinner, but we stayed here at camp.







I ate so many chocolate balls.  When we were finishing dinner, GOOFY WALKED IN!


I passed my camera to the Santa girl and asked her to take a photo of Goofy and I!


Then they came for photos with Tom and Jonathan.


After, we went to the bar.  There was a limbo competition.

Shorter people had a height advantage.  Jonathan joined in!


The winners were given t-shirts.


The party is still going on now, but I need to go to sleep, work tomorrow!

I’m back! Again…

Just arrived back on site this afternoon (Sunday 22nd December, just in time for Christmas!).

Left home Saturday night at 9:40pm, went to the airport, checked in and sipped on Camomile tea.  Boarded the plane and slept well.

Landed in Sydney, went to the Tax Refund line, and it was huge, and slow.  Spent about 45 minutes in line.  There was a guy claiming  Nikon Df and PC-E 24mm, and he had a huge rollercase full of gear!  I just went to claim the tax back from my wrist strap and lens adaptor, and also got the “Goods exported in passenger baggage” form signed off for my camera (so that I won’t get taxed on it when I bring it back).

When walking to the lounge, there was a giant Oreo, with whom I got a selfie.


Had a quick breakfast and shower in the lounge, then went to board the plane.

Something funny was happening when boarding… my boarding pass was giving an error, then they told me that it’s a seat change… another upgrade to business class!  That’s twice a row now!

After the “welcome drinks”, of which I chose juice, I went to sleep.


Had a good sleep, then got up to have breakfast again.  I chose the cold breakfast because I really didn’t feel like having a pork sausage.


The flight attendant was very friendly.  He came to me and said “Mr Loh, we notice it was your birthday 2 days ago, Happy Birthday, did you have a good birthday?  We also notice that you achieved Gold status in September, congratulations”.  Then he offered me some Champaign, but, I shouldn’t drink, so declined.  It felt a little awkward, but special at the same time…

Then later, he came by again, “Still no glass of Champaign for you, mister birthday boy?”.  Still not wanting to drink, I declined.

When approaching the island, we flew over some beautifully coloured reefs.


The problem on my Canon S100 is getting worse.  I think there is some dust on the sensor.  At first was a couple of specks, now it’s a line as well!  And it’s out of warranty Sad smile

I took this photo of my seat when I got up to leave… so that I can remember.


I was the second off the plane, the first through immigration, then a long wait for luggage.  Got through customs and quarantine very quickly, then onto the pickup van.  I was the only one, but then we went to Tontoutel to pick up Simon and Fiona.  I slept well on the bus. 

Arrived back, and the place looked deserted, there was not many people around.  Even at dinner, it was very quiet.  I unpacked everything into my room already.

I hope I can sleep well tonight.  I will write about my R&R soon.