Tag Archives: London

Not a narcissistic outsider

I have an unusual habit. At work, whenever I finish using the computer, I would move the mouse from the left, to the right hand side. Most of the time I would remember this left-to-right move. I’m conscious about moving the mouse to the right because I’m aware that most users in the office are right handed.

Sometimes some colleagues would joke about the mouse being in the wrong place. “Janet was sitting there earlier.” We would joke about life being miserable because I forgot to move the mouse to the right, or the horror when they found two mice were placed next to each other, and they grabbed the wrong mouse for their computer. I have wonderful, supportive colleagues and we often joke about trivial matters like this. Continue reading

Magnificent display at Buckingham Palace

If you were a five-year-old, what would your idea of a perfect gift be? China’s Last Emperor, Pu Yi, gave two huge vases to King George V (great great great grandfather of the new British royal baby George) in 1911. Soon afterwards, Pu Yi was deposed.

Pu Yi, the last emperor of China.

Pu Yi, the last emperor of China.

I learnt about this fascinating fact today in London, as I was a special guest at Buckingham Palace.

The pair of beautiful vases are huge, measuring 217.0 x 80.0 cm. “Pair of large, ovoid, cloisonné enamel vases, with bronze dragon handles, decorated with dragons on a green scale-pattern ground.”

The oriental dragons portrayed on the vases are playful, sweet and even smiling. They are serpent-like, in gold, benevolent, powerful, typical qualities of Chinese dragons. Continue reading

notes-of-london featured image

Weekly Writing Challenge – Stylish Imitation: When ham is not a ham

Weekly Writing Challenge: Stylish Imitation

I chanted “A for apple, B for boy” as a precocious 3 year old and I remembered fondly “X is for Xylophone.” Wow, xylophone is a useful word.

When I arrived in London 15 years ago, my bag was loaded with framed university certificates. I could competently spell and pronounce xylophone,  so my English would be understood. So I thought. Clutching my blue-and-red lettered London A to Z map, I wandered in central London like a proud scholar.

“Where is LeiCester Square?”

“What? Where?”

“China Town, LeiCester Square!”

“AAAAAhhhh, you want to know how to get to LEster Square!” Continue reading

Two for Joy

Could you imagine yourself holding 2 OIympic torches?

Ben and I got this perfect chance today. We held the Olympic torches belonging to Jonathan Eggett and Geoff Mitchinson, 2 Olympic torch bearers in the southeast of England.

2 Olympic torches with Jonathan Eggett and Geoff Mitchinson

I know Jonathan and Geoff through Spirit Health Club in Eastleigh. It’s the best health club in the world: personal, friendly and calming. I go to the club 3-4 times a week, and it has become my extended family.

The burnished, gleaming torches are seductive. I felt compelled to caress the torches, like a man would to his chic Ferrari. Continue reading

What is this radiant triangular object in gold?

Today, I showed this image to 10 intelligent adults at work. The answer was an unanimous “Mmm, not quite sure…It’s a triangular shape…Mmm…”

What’s this?

Then I showed them this image, and the all went ‘AHHHHHH’!

Janet, Ben with Jonathan Eggett, London Olympic torch bearer.

Jonathan Eggett was the torch bearer on the Isle of Wight last weekend. He is the manager of Spirit Health Club in Eastleigh, of Holiday Inn. Continue reading

Weekly Photo Challenge: Friendship via WordPress


Weekly Photo Challenge: Friendship

My friend 十年人生  (10 Year) is very special, because we met through WordPress blogging.

Our WordPress friendship has developed into true friendship.

We started by admiring each other’s writings. Then we linked each other. Later we met in London.

We were invited for a lovely meal with her family. They prepared the most delicious Chinese Hot Pot, where you put an obscene amount of meats and Chinese cabbage in a boiling hot pot and eat until you’re stuffed. Continue reading