Aug 132012
 

Time is flying by ever so quickly and quite sadly….

The good news is that I submitted the first chapter of my dissertation a day ahead of schedule. It was probably the longest academic piece of writing I have ever done and to think that it’s only part of the entire project at 47 pages in totality. I’m not saying it’s up to scratch for quality, but at least it’s the first milestone achieved in this long doctoral journey…

With that said, I’ll let the pictures do the rest of the talking on the other activities of our summer holiday:

Close
29-Jul-2012 17:42, NIKON COOLPIX S51, 3.3, 6.3mm, 0.625 sec, ISO 400
Close
29-Jul-2012 17:42, NIKON COOLPIX S51, 3.3, 6.3mm, 0.625 sec, ISO 400
Close
29-Jul-2012 17:43, NIKON COOLPIX S51, 3.3, 6.3mm, 0.25 sec, ISO 400
 
Close
29-Jul-2012 17:49, NIKON COOLPIX S51, 3.3, 6.3mm, 0.25 sec, ISO 400
View from our hotel room at Lae Lay Suites
Close
View from our hotel room at Lae Lay Suites30-Jul-2012 04:11, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 160
Close
30-Jul-2012 04:12, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 5.1, 10.0mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 250
 
Close
30-Jul-2012 04:12, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 500
Close
30-Jul-2012 04:13, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 640
Close
30-Jul-2012 04:15, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 100
 
Elephants!
Close
Elephants!01-Aug-2012 01:09, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 5.5, 12.26mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 500
Lunch at Black Canyon cafe - the blueberry delight was delightful!
Close
Lunch at Black Canyon cafe - the blueberry delight was delightful!01-Aug-2012 01:52, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 800
Close
01-Aug-2012 01:53, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.167 sec, ISO 100
 
The focal point of this picture is the man in the back with no shirt on...inside the mall...
Close
The focal point of this picture is the man in the back with no shirt on...inside the mall...01-Aug-2012 02:18, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 4.8, 7.73mm, 0.025 sec, ISO 800
A cute baby elephant!
Close
A cute baby elephant!02-Aug-2012 05:20, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 5.0, 9.39mm, 0.5 sec, ISO 100
Close
02-Aug-2012 05:20, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 5.0, 9.39mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 1250
 
Close
02-Aug-2012 05:21, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 5.0, 9.39mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 1250
Healing up after nearly three weeks...fascinated by the spots of pigmentation coming in...
Close
Healing up after nearly three weeks...fascinated by the spots of pigmentation coming in...03-Aug-2012 00:56, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 800
Close
03-Aug-2012 00:56, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 800
 
Aug 052012
 

Well, I’m on 21 pages out of the goal of 35 and just another 7 days left to go. If I maintain my 2 pages a day pattern, it should be no problem. Although I should probably do a bit more each day so that I can have some more flexibility, but we’ll see. For now, I’m just happy when the two pages come out!

Anyway…we’ve been enjoying our days still and still denying the reality that we might have to return to real-life eventually. Each day we head to the beach for a swim and then a few laps in the pool. In the evenings, we go out for dinner and ride around. It’s a relaxed and nice life. πŸ˜‰

The dream is to finish this crazy degree, keep saving up some money and paying debts, then find a new job that allows me to feel fulfilled and also give me the kind of life I dream of…. Is that really asking too much? πŸ˜‰ Maybe… but that’s why we call it a dream!

I’ll try to post some pics next time…

Until then,

-T πŸ˜€

Aug 032012
 

OMG! 20 days left…????? Β πŸ˜€

I know I’m spoiled…It’s not like I’ve already been off for 20+ days, but still we’re almost down to the teens and that makes me sad….

As I start to contemplate a teeeeeennnny tiiiiiny bit about work, I have to really create some clear goals about my focus this next year.

*Do NOT let others stress me out!

*Focus on my classes and do the minimal amount of responsibility required to complete the job.

*Do NOT volunteer or get roped into doing more than is required.
(Why? Because, my PhD work should come first and foremost)

*Try to get out by next academic year when the PhD is complete….consulting or a different job…..

This is what I have to keep my eyes on!

Back to PhDing…(maybe or I might take a break today) πŸ˜‰

-T πŸ˜€

Jul 302012
 

I’ve been a bit busy with data analysis work rather than pleasure writing the past couple of days.

We have been getting out to the beach for a swim in the waves. Aside from today, the weather has been beautiful; therefore, so has the water! The good news is that the bandages I have are waterproof for the most part. Today, I went without and it was okay, but it seems that my muscles in the knee and ankle are still sore so when the waves hit I have some trouble staying up and such. In a few more days, hopefully, I’ll be ok…(I keep hoping!).

Usually, after we get back from the beach, I jump in the pool for a proper swim to get my exercise in. Who would have thought that I would actually miss ‘walking/running’??? πŸ˜‰ So, the swimming is at least a decent alternative for now.

So, that’s the update for today….Back to analysing for me!

-T πŸ˜€

Jul 282012
 

We’re back in Phuket and relieved after our trip to Hong Kong.

It’s been a long time since we’ve been around fast-paced and pushy people. Plus, we happened to stay in Little India/Pakistan land, which just reminded us of what we don’t like in Abu Dhabi, so that was rather unfortunate.

Therefore, we’re more than happy to be back where things are a bit more relaxed. Also, our new digs are more spacious and pretty nice overall.

My posts will now resume the mundane… πŸ˜‰

First dinner back in Phuket near Karon beach
Close
First dinner back in Phuket near Karon beach27-Jul-2012 15:33, NIKON COOLPIX S51, 3.3, 6.3mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 1600
Someone is enjoying his food!
Close
Someone is enjoying his food!27-Jul-2012 15:34, NIKON COOLPIX S51, 3.3, 6.3mm, 0.02 sec, ISO 1600
Our new digs - the living room
Close
Our new digs - the living room27-Jul-2012 16:34, NIKON COOLPIX S51, 3.3, 6.3mm, 0.02 sec, ISO 160
 
Our new digs - bedroom to left, bathroom straight and kitchen to right
Close
Our new digs - bedroom to left, bathroom straight and kitchen to right27-Jul-2012 16:34, NIKON COOLPIX S51, 3.3, 6.3mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 200
Our new digs - the kitchen area
Close
Our new digs - the kitchen area27-Jul-2012 16:34, NIKON COOLPIX S51, 3.3, 6.3mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 100
Our new digs - the kitchen area
Close
Our new digs - the kitchen area27-Jul-2012 16:35, NIKON COOLPIX S51, 3.3, 6.3mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 100
 
Our new digs - the bedroom with balcony
Close
Our new digs - the bedroom with balcony27-Jul-2012 16:35, NIKON COOLPIX S51, 3.3, 6.3mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 200
Our new digs - the bedroom with a mock desk/dresser/etc.
Close
Our new digs - the bedroom with a mock desk/dresser/etc.27-Jul-2012 16:35, NIKON COOLPIX S51, 3.3, 6.3mm, 0.013 sec, ISO 250
Our new digs - the bathroom (sink/toilet)
Close
Our new digs - the bathroom (sink/toilet)27-Jul-2012 16:36, NIKON COOLPIX S51, 3.3, 6.3mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 100
 
Our new digs - the shower and shelves...
Close
Our new digs - the shower and shelves...27-Jul-2012 16:37, NIKON COOLPIX S51, 3.3, 6.3mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 100
 
Jul 272012
 

After our fun in Macau, we realized that the weather probably wasn’t going to get much better for us and my leg wasn’t going to miraculously be great for wandering the city on our own. So, we decided to book the Big Bus Tour – Premium – since they were offering discounted prices and it gave us two days as we had until late-ish on Thursday to spend before needing to be at the airport.

If you’re a tour kind-of-person, this is such a great way to see the city and get some information too. We did this in Madrid when I went with my mom and aunt a few years ago and it was really great. In some cities, like Dubai and Abu Dhabi, it’s not worth the price, but for only USD38.75 per person for two days, a night tour, round-trip ferry crossing, peak tram and viewing terrace entrance and a ride on the Sampan boats (we didn’t have time to do that) – it was totally worth it!

So, I’ll let the photos do the talking –

Clock tower by Star Ferry terminal
Close
Clock tower by Star Ferry terminal25-Jul-2012 23:17, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 400
Close
25-Jul-2012 23:35, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.008 sec, ISO 800
Close
25-Jul-2012 23:35, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 4.8, 17.22mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 800
 
The Peninsula hotel
Close
The Peninsula hotel25-Jul-2012 23:42, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.008 sec, ISO 800
Day 1 of Big Bus Tour
Close
Day 1 of Big Bus Tour25-Jul-2012 23:51, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 800
Double-decker buses!
Close
Double-decker buses!25-Jul-2012 23:51, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.01 sec, ISO 800
 
Kowloon
Close
Kowloon25-Jul-2012 23:59, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 5.4, 11.43mm, 0.013 sec, ISO 800
Close
25-Jul-2012 23:59, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.05 sec, ISO 800
Even Froggy made the trip - he's been my traveling companion for years and years!
Close
Even Froggy made the trip - he's been my traveling companion for years and years!26-Jul-2012 00:08, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.025 sec, ISO 800
 
Close
26-Jul-2012 00:12, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 5.1, 10.0mm, 0.025 sec, ISO 800
Close
26-Jul-2012 00:18, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 500
Close
26-Jul-2012 00:18, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 4.4, 6.07mm, 0.005 sec, ISO 800
 
Close
26-Jul-2012 00:19, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 5.7, 13.09mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 800
Close
26-Jul-2012 00:19, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 4.2, 5.72mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 640
Our hotel was located in this conglomerate called a 'mansion'
Close
Our hotel was located in this conglomerate called a 'mansion'26-Jul-2012 01:18, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 5.4, 11.43mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 800
 
Close
26-Jul-2012 01:19, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.006 sec, ISO 800
View of Hong Kong island from the Kowloon side
Close
View of Hong Kong island from the Kowloon side26-Jul-2012 03:23, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 4.5, 6.45mm, 0.006 sec, ISO 800
Close
26-Jul-2012 03:24, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 4.7, 7.28mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 800
 

 

Jul 252012
 

Leg update: Β It’s healing and I’m walking almost normally, but it will still be a bit longer before it’s totally back to normal….

After spending the majority of two days in the hotel room, and realizing that we are going to have to get out despite Typhoon Vicente plowing through and my leg being what it is. So, we organized to go on an afternoon tour of Macau. The plan was to catch the noon ferry and arrive in time to pay for the tour at 1:45pm.

Well, we arrived in time catch the noon ferry, except that tickets were sold out on the TurboJet and CotaiJet didn’t have anything either until 3pm. So, when a seemingly crazy Chinese woman offered tickets for the 12:15 ferry for the same price, we went with the flow and followed her to the entrance ensuring that the tickets she was selling were legit. They were.

Once we got through immigration and to the berth, the ferry was further delayed until 12:30. It’s an hour ride to Macau and so our timing for the tour was already cutting it close. The ride was pretty uneventful until the last 10 minutes when the waves kicked up and people all around starting puking into the bags…. Thankfully, we finally arrived, but were much delayed.

By the time we got through Macau immigration it was 2:10pm and the tour had gone on without us….

One of the nice things about Macau is that most of the casinos have free shuttle buses to their hotels. Since the Venetian is a big attraction, we decided to take the shuttle bus there and then think about what to do afterwards. Through the drive, we got to see the city a bit as the Venetian is located on Taipa island, which is connected to Macau via a nice long bridge. So, we spent a couple of hours there walking around, which was fun.

It had mostly stopped raining when we were ready to head back, but R didn’t feel inclined to head into the main square to see St. Andrew’s church remains and the old area. I had seen it when I visited before, but thought he might want to see it. Since he wasn’t into it, we just headed back to Macau and took the ferry back to Kowloon. Thankfully, that trip was totally uneventful and I was able to take a wee nap. πŸ˜‰

My ankle held up pretty well and so we stopped for some dinner, which I didn’t take a picture of (Surprise!) and then we turned in early back at the hotel.

Here are some pics (videos still not working…):

China Ferry Terminal in Kowloon heading to Macau
Close
China Ferry Terminal in Kowloon heading to Macau24-Jul-2012 21:16, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.1 sec, ISO 100
Close
24-Jul-2012 21:18, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.005 sec, ISO 80
Another ferry heading to Macau with a view of Western Kowloon in the background
Close
Another ferry heading to Macau with a view of Western Kowloon in the background24-Jul-2012 21:21, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.004 sec, ISO 80
 
Arriving at Macau with a view of the Sands hotel and casino
Close
Arriving at Macau with a view of the Sands hotel and casino24-Jul-2012 22:52, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 5.1, 10.0mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 160
Taking the free shuttle bus from the Macau Terminal to the Venetian Hotel
Close
Taking the free shuttle bus from the Macau Terminal to the Venetian Hotel24-Jul-2012 23:30, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 4.6, 6.83mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 800
Macau - through the rain
Close
Macau - through the rain24-Jul-2012 23:35, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 200
 
Macau
Close
Macau24-Jul-2012 23:36, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 320
Macau (Wynn hotel and casino in the middle)
Close
Macau (Wynn hotel and casino in the middle)24-Jul-2012 23:38, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 500
Macau
Close
Macau24-Jul-2012 23:40, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 400
 
Macau - Galaxy hotel and casino (would be pretty in nicer weather...)
Close
Macau - Galaxy hotel and casino (would be pretty in nicer weather...)24-Jul-2012 23:47, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 5.4, 11.43mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 800
Arriving at the Venetian
Close
Arriving at the Venetian24-Jul-2012 23:49, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.004 sec, ISO 800
Inside the Venetian on the 3rd floor where all the shops and such are located
Close
Inside the Venetian on the 3rd floor where all the shops and such are located25-Jul-2012 00:09, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.025 sec, ISO 800
 
Close
25-Jul-2012 00:09, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 800
Close
25-Jul-2012 00:18, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 5.0, 9.39mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 1250
Getting a little treat...
Close
Getting a little treat...25-Jul-2012 00:29, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.013 sec, ISO 800
 
The Venetian hotel lobby
Close
The Venetian hotel lobby25-Jul-2012 01:06, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.025 sec, ISO 800
Heading back to the ferry terminal
Close
Heading back to the ferry terminal25-Jul-2012 01:30, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 500
Outside the Venetian
Close
Outside the Venetian25-Jul-2012 01:31, OLYMPUS IMAGING CORP. TG-610 , 3.9, 5.0mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 250
 
Jul 232012
 

Well… I’d like to post some pics, but I literally haven’t left the hotel room since we arrived – over 24 hours now, I think.

I’m beyond cabin fever stage and into the acceptance that I could probably survive in a jail cell if I had to and didn’t have to worry about surviving the craziness of other jailers. Happy thoughts, right? πŸ˜‰

Mostly, I’ve been convalescing my leg. It was pretty sore and swollen from our trip in and R thought it best to rest up. We had talked about going out to the Night Market, but by the time the hour came to go, he recommended just chilling in the room. So, he went out twice to get food for us and I stayed in doing some work and writing – not all bad.

My injuries are healing and the hospital bandages are off. I’m now doing my own treatments, which was a bit traumatic the first go, but was easier last night. The swelling has gone down since I haven’t been on it much and it seems to stem from the bruising around my ankle, which gets agitated when I walk. The good news is that it does feel better as I write and I was able to walk the four steps to the bathroom with very little pain, which is better than yesterday when I was hopping the four steps instead. πŸ˜€

Sadly, it is raining now as a typhoon passes through. We’re hoping it will pass by quickly so that we can get ourselves out of the room for a bit. We’ll keep our fingers crossed, but with our luck on this trip so far we’re more cynically optimistic than anything else.

Hope for more interesting posts!!!!

-T πŸ˜€

Jul 222012
 

We’ve arrived safely in Hong Kong.

Phuket Airport is nice and small, so it’s very easy to get through immigration and all that fun stuff.

Our flight on Thai Air Asia was smooth and easy. We usually pay for the seats with more legroom since R is a big man and needs the space. Luckily, no one sat in-between us, so we had three seats for the two of us, which made it nice for me to be able to rest my leg up for the flight.

It’s only 3.5 hours to Hong Kong, so I napped off and on while vowing to appreciate more when my leg is healed up.

We decided to taxi it to our hotel as I wasn’t feeling up to the fun of hauling all our luggage on the train on the cheap route where two changes were required and the cost for the easier route was only about 2USD cheaper than the taxi. We arrived without incident and felt pretty good until we got out of the taxi.

We had arrived in Little India/Pakistan of Hong Kong. Who knew that there was even such an area or population? We felt as if we were back in crazy Abu Dhabi again!!! With R almost getting into a fight and me envisioning a trip to either the police or hospital, we then realized we were staying in a weird conglomerate building of various guesthouses all entitled with the name of Chung King Mansion.

It’s an experience…I’ll write more about the elevators and room-size later, but in any case we’ve arrived and slept through the night, so it’s looking to be a better day at least. πŸ™‚

-T πŸ˜€

Jul 202012
 

Seriously, cabin fever is setting in. I’m sick of the hotel bed. I want to jump in the swimming pool, go for a walk without pain or limping…. It has only been five days since the accident, but I would like for the healing process to be a little faster, please!

Here’s the story of the accident, by the way.

Each morning I wake up thinking I will be able to walk normally and there had been some miraculous healing overnight. Yeah, so I’m a wishful (wistful) thinker. πŸ˜‰

<sigh> Anyway…I do need to rest up as we are heading to Hong Kong tomorrow for five days and I really need to be able to walk better there since we won’t want to be just hanging out in the hotel room all the time. So, I just need to hang on another couple of days, then I can take off the bandages myself and see how things look. Mostly, it’s just pain in the ankle that makes walking difficult and still a little sore in the knee area. Basically, I should just marvel at the healing powers of the body and accept that it takes time.

Even though I spend most of the day indoors, I did manage to get out to the pool one afternoon, which was a huge relief! We do also go out in the evenings for dinner, so it’s not as if I don’t get out at all.

Plus, the real truth is that I should be working on my Methods chapter anyway…this is the perfect time considering I can’t do much else…but the procrastinator in me denies this truth…. πŸ˜›

Guess I should get to work!

-T πŸ˜€