Blatantly Propositioned on Orchard Road

I’m still no clearer on the repat or not situation, I’m afraid, and although it has been getting me down immeasurably, I have nonetheless-so been able to have some serioso fun this week.

On Wednesday I went to the meet and greet with Charli XCX at TopShop. She was so sweet. Just a regular girl called Charlotte, from Cambridge (but that’s London Queen enough for me! That’s one of her songs, babeses). She told me she loved my sunglasses, and the radio chick who was hosting asked if my hair was natural. Charli was totes a pro, but it really highlighted for me how hard it is to be a celebrité. I face that kinda stuff myself, when lovelies ask for pix with me, and you know, sometimes it’s not that easy to be in receipt of all that adulation. I make it look easy, of course, but I’m so starting to realise that underneath every star there’s actually a real person, just trying to make their way in the world, being fabulous.

Charli XCX saying she loved my sunglasses (she's the one in the orange top & I'm the one in the gold jumpsuit)

Charli XCX saying she loved my sunglasses (she’s the one in the orange top, Eva my new PT is in the middle  & I’m the one in the gold jumpsuit)

Me with the radio chick

Me with the radio chick

Then that night I went to the concert with my Expaterati girlies, including my new personal trainer/ body guard, Eva, and the fab hottie who won my contest to attend. She won because her answer to why it should be her was, “Because I think you’re awesome, babe!!!!”, so that was a non-brainer. We all had the best time eveerrrrr, and danced our behinds off, looking amazebobs. You could tell we made a mahusiv impression because we stood in the middle of the venue, and other people left a big space between us and them. I have to say, I totes heart the Coliseum at the Hard Rock Hotel. It’s intimate, it’s outdoors but under cover, the staff are fab, there’s lots of room to dance, and best of all, no lines at the bars!! Don’t tell anyone about it though because I feel like it’s sort of my venue, and I wouldn’t want it to get booked out next time I’m after tickets.

I also TOTES heart this app called Songkick, which syncs with your iTunes library and tells you when concerts are on. No, I’m not being paid by these people, dear readers. I’m just a really generous person who likes to share great stuff with loved ones. It’s ok, don’t thank me : )

And here are some awesome hot pics of me at the concert:

Hot me 1

Hot me 1

Hot me 2

Hot me 2

Hot me 3

Hot me 3

Hot me 4

Hot me 4

So it was a great night, and yesterday I did NOT feel like working out, when I awoke to find Eva standing at the foot of the bed, firing at my face with a water gun (the help let her in, argh!!). Damn, Eva’s good. I’m lucky to have found her. Unfortunately I have had to part company with the Hyatt gym. They just kept on giving me locker key number 69, and frankly it got too much. I can’t bear locker-based innuendo, you know?

Eva & me at the concert

Me & Eva at the concert

After a gruelling workout, a power brunch, and a long nap, I was glad that Eva had gunned me out of my slumber. I had such a glow about me later, as I sashayed along Orchard Road to do some shoppage. I took my lovely designer trolley with me because I wanted to go to Ambercrombie, so I needed to bring my heavy spelunking gear. Trolleys used to be mummsy, but if you still think that, where have you been?! You’re nobody in Singas if you don’t have a trolley.

Trolleys = hotness

Trolleys = hotness

As I passed the Paragon, a fine ang mo gentleman, who must’ve been at least 70 (but had a full head of sandy blonde hair, and was a dead ringer for Robert Redford), sidled up beside me and complimented me on my trolley. As I am always friendly to strangers, I indulged his apparent desire for a little small talk, entering into conversation. I just love older people. They’re so nice.

I asked him if he lived here, and upon confirmation, I questioned whether he had a trolley. He responded, “No, I have my backpack. And I have great muscles. Do you want to try me out?”

I was a tad taken aback, and for a moment I wondered if he was offering to carry me to Abercrombie. When he winked, it clicked that this was probably not what he was offering, so I said, “Oh old babe, that’s like totes lovely, but no thanks”, and then grabbed my phone, pretending it had rung.

“Sooooooo soz, nice old man who is so nice, but I’ve got to take this call. It’s the help”, I told him, and gave him the final honour of my beautiful Kate Middleton smile.

I get propositioned all the time, naturally, but this was the first occasion where the propositioner was of such an advanced age, and therefore so very wise. It just goes to show that a good workout will bring all the boys to the yard.


O

EM

GEE

I was just going to click publish on this post when one of my girlies sent me this link to a casting call Diva TV is doing for the show How Do I Look Asia. I’m impeccably dressed at all times already, but I’d love to do more telly. I should totes do that, am I right?? Anyone want to nominate me?
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The Horrible Horrors of Repatriation

I haven’t been able to sleep for the past few nights, since reading the frightening article on the Expat Wall Street Journal site about repatriation blues. It’s partic awful for me right now, given the ongoing unknowingness that is occurring re Don’s job. When I have slept, it has been in fitful and anxious bouts, interspersed with dreadful dreams about rollerblading through Waitrose (Americans, that’s a high-end grocery store; Australians and others, you’ll know already, yes lah?) in a g-string bikini, with a faded tan and a woefully unkempt Brazilian (wax, not person from Brazil). As I round the corner from household to bakery, I fall over, but no one understands the language I am speaking, calling out that my legs and heart are broken.

It got so bad last night that I literally became delirious through sleep-deprivation. I found myself on the roof terrace, in a state of panic that April’s delivery of Veuve Click was already exhausted. How could that be???!!

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The only option I had was to phone cousin Clara the psychologist, and beg for her help to get me out of this wretched head space. I really need my sleep because tomorrow I’m kickin’ it with Charli XCX at her pre-concert meet and greet, and then I want to be 110% grounded in my awesomeness to enjoy her concert in the evening.

So I phoned Clara and I instructed her assistant to tell her that I was v upset, and I might do something stupid. (I just meant I might buy something hideous from Marc Jacobs. Dunno what she thought I meant.)

Within minutes, Clara called me back, bless her : ) Therapists have such good hearts.

I explained to her about what I’d read, and that I’m totes terrified about the repat blues if we have to go back to London soon-ish. And that I’ve run out of Veuve Click.

I was practically in tears, and she must surely have felt my pain, so I was totes blown away when she laid into me!!

Check the diatribe, babeses!:

“Emma-Jane. If you want to know why it is that expats suffer when they return to their home countries, I will tell you. You won’t like what I am going to say though, so I will ask you now, do you really want to know my thoughts on this?”

Because of my desperate state combined with my general intense curiosity about psychological issues, I said, “Um, ya, ok lah.”

“Some people become expats because they are unable to reconcile existential human givens. Givens like the fact that existence might be meaningless and that we are all just tiny fragments in the universe, simultaneously unique and insignificant. They can’t bear their feelings of insignificance, of feeling like nobody, so rather than staying put to reflect on those anxieties and learning how to process them, they run from their fears. They run to the next big adventure, and then the next. It’s as if they think they can escape from themselves or become somebody else, if they only run fast enough to new and different places. And then if they do go back home, there are all the fears and anxieties, right where they left them. And now they’re older, and have a new set of fears, like ageing parents they have to face again; as well as their own ageing, and retirement. So, for someone in that position, repatriation will be a huge loss: a loss of adventure, a loss of expectation. A sudden coming down to earth with a bump.”

“But babes”, I interrupted, feeling quite battered and baffed, “You’re actually totes making it worse! I don’t want to come down to earth with a bump!! Why me?? Why should I have to? I just want to feel better, so that I can sleep better, so that I can hang out with a pop star on Wednesday! Can’t you be a bit more supportive here, and get me through this?! That’s why I called you!”

“EJ, as your cousin, I would like to support you. But you have called me at work, and I too have worries that keep me up at night. Worries about patients, worries about funding cuts, worries about my family. And I am not going to just reassure you in order to maintain your current patterns. Coming down to earth is actually a good thing. It’s an opportunity to finally be still enough to explore the losses, fears and anxieties you have been trying to run from. So if you are coming back, yes, it’ll be hard for the first year or maybe longer. But then it will get easier, and hopefully you’ll find a way to feel at home in yourself.”

She paused.

“Look EJ, I have to go now. I have a patient waiting for me.” We said byes.

To feel at home in myself. Hmmmmm. I decided to contemplate that with a G & T, and as it turned out, the idea really did help. By my fourth glass, I was fast asleep on the roof terrace sofa. I had a lovely dream about living in a house overlooking the ocean. It was only when I woke up drenched that I realised the thunder storm wasn’t just part of my dream. As I got ready for bed, I thought that Clara may be full of sh**, but the house on the ocean did look pretty nice.

Free Anti-Ageing Techniques, For Expats and Non-Expats

I believe I may have mentioned once or twice, that expat wives can be very competitive. Cousin Clara says it’s about, “establishing a hierarchy in a mixed environment, wherein cultural norms such as class system are less clear-cut than among static populations”; but I think it’s more like Froo Froo at Tanjong Beach Club. She does that sniffing thing all dogs do. I won’t degrade her by going into details, but I think you know what I mean.

Anyhoo, today I was lunching with my Expaterati girlies – some friendses and some not so much – and a discussion emerged about personal anti-ageing preferences in the facial region. My totes babesome BFF Flo has had a fair old whack of interventions: regular meet-ups with Lady B, a touch of collagen, a few teensy implants, a little eye-lift, and some other minor bits and bobs. She is gorgeous. Trust me. Hot as.

Au contraire, Doom and Gloom Expat Wifey (why does she still get invited to our lunches??) shuns all beauty enhancements, and instead chooses the Abandon All Hope approach to physical signs of ageing.

As loyal readers will know, I espouse the Ladeee Luuuuuv view, that we ladies should be free to decide what, when, why and how we do whatevs we want with our appearance, as long as we look and feel our utmost hottest at all timeses. And we should totes support each other in those decisions, rather than put sistas down.

Me and the gals were therefore thusly being super supportive when we said to D & G that maybe she should consider doing something about her face; at least opting for waterproof mascara, given the realities of this climate (she seriously looks like an owl and I’m seriously not joking TBH). I feel mahusively sorry for her because I secretly know that her hus is heavily involved with his male PA (I’ve only told six other people, including Flo), so we were doing her a favour by trying to force her to make an effort. For her own sake, you know?! It’s what her Guardian Angel would have wanted.

In a way, we were just being the earthly embodiment of her Guardian Angel. At the time, I even formulated an intention to chant for her in my meditation space with the Buddha water feature and a nice Nag Champa burn, offering up these words: May the Universe throw forth eternal blessings to make Mrs Doom & Gloom look a lot better so that she can be a bit hot, namasté.

So I was serioso horrificated when D & G said to Flo, “I completely respect what you’ve done to your face, and your right to choose that. But I choose not to do those things, so you should respect my right not to. And no offence, but you don’t look your age, or anyone’s age, you just look like someone who has had all kinds of stuff done to your face. You basically look like everyone else who has Botoxed, collagened, and whatever elsed their faces beyond recognition. I don’t even know what you really look like!! Do you?!”

Weeeeellll, that was a step too far, babeses.

I was shocked (Flo was too, though you’d have to know her deep down to see it, due to the lack of facial cues), but I remained sufficiently in retention of my verbal and empathic skills to intervene.

“Hon”, I said, with my sweetest Kate Middleton smile, “Just because you choose to pay zero attention to your appearance, despite the fact that you’re probly pushing 49, and you’ve obviously had way too much sun on your face during your youth, it’s really quite unfair to judge others, ya get me? Partic when they look way hotter than you, and their husband isn’t screwing his dude personal assistant”…

Oopsy!! It just came out! Oh dear. All cool though because almost everyone there (except D & G herself) knew about it anyway. So that was fine.

D & G stared at me, with the weirdest look. It was like a combination of, “I hate you and I want you dead”, and “OMG, babes, thanks so much for letting me know!”

More the latter, I felt, so when she stood up to leave, it seemed right for me to give her a great big hug. People need warmth and intense suffocating closeness after hearing difficult news. I know that because of my six-month counselling training.

After my lovely hug, she left, and I was happy for two reasons: 1. I felt secure in the knowledge that I had done all I could to boost her self-esteem. And B) I wanted to get back to my pastrami Reuben – my only carb and mayo shots this week. No way I’m not going to enjoy that!

Once she was gone, we normal happy ladies had a nice chat about how we manage to look so young. I shared with them two of my amazing anti-ageing gems that are 100% free. Because I am v generous, I will share them with you too, dear readers.

The first one is to think of a beautiful female celebrity who’s at least ten years older than you. Fully appreciate that a ton of work and cash has gone into how she looks. And know that she will always be SO VERY MUCH older than you.

And that’s it! It’s basically my reformulation of Einstein’s theory of relativity, applied to ageing. You’re welcome!

My other genius tip is to say that you’re older than you are. For centuries, women have been making the ridic error of claiming to be younger than they are. Whyee?? If you say you’re younger, people are more likely to be looking at you, thinking, “Yowzer, she looks rough!”. Say you’re five or ten years older though, and they’ll be thinking totes the opposite, begging you to reveal the secrets of your amazebobs youthfulnessification. A great thing about this technique is that after you’ve said it a few times, you will start to partly believe it, so you can fully embrace the positive feedback you receive.

Then, unless you develop an as yet unclassified mental health disorder of believing your own age lie, you’ll also partly still not believe it, which will remind that you’re really 35 not 45 (or 50 not 60, 60 not 70, you get the pic). That’ll keep you totes aware of how young you actually are, in contrastation with the age you’ll be a decade from now.

All my girlies agreed that both ideas are incredibly wise. So it’s fair to say that this proves beyond reasonable doubt that if you follow these strategies, along with my previously provided beauty advice and my fashion go-tos, you can be as hot as me for many years to come. If only D & G read my blog. It could save her marriage. There’s just no helping some people. Shame.

 

Froo Froo in her dokini at Tanjong Beach Club. Even the dog is hotter than Mrs Doom & Gloom.

Froo Froo in her dokini at Tanjong Beach Club. Even the dog is hotter than Mrs Doom & Gloom.

 

Expat Parenting Musings on Bintan

We’re having an amazing time on Bintan. Don and I aren’t really speaking to each other, but we’re still having an amazing time. The irritants are loving the kids’ club, and Angel has found some teen buddies via Yik Yak (what now, now??), so it’s all awesome. The pedis here are just incrediblé. You’d think a pedi is just a pedi… But come here (I won’t mention the name of the hotel spa because I refuse to ho myself), and you will find that Pedicure takes on a whole new meaning. Not just a meaning… an unending promise of a divine lifestyle via feets. All that, captured in a rapturous hour and a half of bliss, experienced as a wave of unforgettable communion with one’s soul and true self. Yes, babeses. Yes.

Apart from that, in my free time, I’ve been thinking about how annoying children are.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m totes in heart with Max and Mills. But I was reclining hotly in the sun today, tossing ground-breaking ideas around my powerful brain, as I often do, and I found myself scrolling forward a hundred years from now. I thought about how women are already not that into staying at home to look after the little people. We carry them for nine months (almost ten in my case: Max was like, “No way I’m going out there”), have our bodies naturally ripped to shreds or unnaturally sliced to pieces, and then choose to breast-feed or not, co-sleep or not, baby-led wean or not, with a bunch of people telling us that what we’re doing is SOOOOO the wrong thing, regardamento-less of what we actually decide to do.

And I am starting to think that some time soon, when parents stop lying about how hard this parenting lark is, having children will become a job. Like it always has been for the default parent. I’m lucky enough to have full-time help, so there is no default parent in my case, thank eff. It sounds awful!

You may well doubt my words, but I predict that by the time our babies are fully grown, privileged peeps will start to realise the full extent of the major hell of having children. There will be the stalwarts who elect voluntationally to reproduce – they will be the exception – but beyond that, parenting will be a career which few will choose, and not everyone will be entitled to sign up for. And truesome, not everyone should be entitled to sign up for this job. Despite being an amazebobs mother myself, if I’d been tested for my commitment to child-rearing in advance, I am not totes certain that I would’ve passed. Even me!! Which is cool because some days I just want to board a plane for Vegas and have nothing else to worry about. I dunno, babeses. Maybe it’s just me.

It can’t just be me though because there’s some weird stuff going on with kids, parenting, and prevarication.

No one tells a first-time pregnant woman what it’s really going to be like, am I right? We all just smile, congratulate, and talk about the gooey stuff.

And once the kids are here on Earth, no one would ever ever EVER think they wish their kid hadn’t been born – let alonio say it ffs – except in We Need to Talk About Kevin, and that’s like one million % fiction. So no, that thought would never occur to ANY parent, no matter how delirious they are from their infant’s non-sleepage, or how tortured they feel by their teenager’s general demeanor.

So, of course, we wouldn’t wish the irritants gone once they’re here. I just wonder if there might be a huge vault of private struggle around raising kids that was never talked about in our parents’ generation (I have a vague recollection of hearing my mother blaming my father for me “being born at all”, but surely it was a dream); which those in my more open-minded peer group are now discussing. Well, I say discussing. I mean Googling. It’s all being written about on the Huff, so there’s really no need to enter into potentially embarrassing conversations about parenting in person, particularly with close friends. Best not to jeopardise close friendships by revealing too much about our children’s humiliating failures.

It’s all of this that leads me to the de facto conclusion that, pretty soon, young adults will just want to get on with their lives on Instagram or YouNow or Vine, or whatevs those things have evolved into; and they’ll be so busy with that stuff that they won’t want to have kids unless they’re paid for it. No point otherwise! Like how the increased availability of porn (not a good thing!) has resulted in a drastic reduction in teenage pregnancy (a good thing!). You and I, dear readers, are very young and in-the-now ourselves, but the mindset of these web-fluenced floozies we are raising is a separate quagmirification from whence we emerged.

I for one am not going to roll over and play dead. I’ll be hiring a team of teenage girls and boys as my social media informants when Milly hits 12. She’s four now, so in the meantime I’ll get on with my gruelling self-maintenance schedulepartying with my crew, and doing exactly what the hell I want to do, whenever I want to do it. Selfies and all other manifestations of what cousin Clara the psychologist calls “narcissism” are only stupid when kids do them. Just ask Frida Kahlo, Clara says. (No idea what she means.)

Bisous from Bintan XXX

A place to let the mind wander NAMASTE

A place to let the mind wander
NAMASTE

Expat Marital Misunderstandios

Today I decided that enough was enough. I believe in open, clear, authentic communication, so while Don was up in his home office and I was having a Brazilian down the street, I emailed him to ask what in the name of all that’s holy is going on with Liz. If he thinks that just changing the subject to say that we’re moving thousands of miles away is a get-out, well I’m sorry, but it’s totes not. I serioso doubt that we’re really leaving.

Here are the mails:

My mail to Don

Don's mail to moi

 

ARGH!! I seem to have gotten the v much wrong end of the stick here… Oopsy, silly moi! I felt so yuck-ster then that I realised the only possible course of action would be to go for a photoshoot. I think you’ll agree, dear readers, that I am hot therefore I am, and nothing else really matters.

I know: I’m awesome at keeping things in perspective : )

 

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Win a Night Out With Me & My Expaterati Girlies!!!

To celebrate my birthday month, I am inviting one awesome reader to join me and my Expaterati girlies at the Hard Rock Hotel Singapore venue, the Coliseum, to see my London Queen Charli XCX (you know, that Boom Clap song), on the 22nd of April. Boozeness in this lovely intimate venue is on moi! For a chance be That Person, contact me at emmajane.austenjones@gmail.com, or tweet @expatEJ, telling me why you are the babester, guy or gal, that I should pick.

The deadline to apply for this incrediblé fun-ness opportunity is the 15th of April, so get those fingers typing! For dear readers who don’t live in Singapore, I’m so soz, but flights and accommodation are not included : (. I will, however, pick you up from the airport in my soft-top Maserati, bring a mahusiv welcome sign with your name on it to the arrivals gate, and shower you with a magnum of Veuve Click.

Can’t wait to hear from you!!

EJ x

(NB. This is a genuine offer, but you must be willing to have a wild night out with a fictional character in a red wig and her non-fictional friends.)

Partying with the Hottest Guys in Singapore

Fabulous weekend, babeses! Hope you too. The highlight was that on Saturday night I had the mahusiv honour of partying with the most hottestest guys in Singapore. It was my gay BFF CJ’s bday par-té, and serioso peeps, the finest gentlemen in town were there. I went with a single straight Expaterati sista of mine, and crazy upon crazy, she totes failed to pull! What now, now?! Bizarro because the chicos majorly outnumbered the chicas, so the odds really should have been in her favour.

 

Bday babe & blonde boobtastic DJ

Bday babe & blonde boobtastic DJ. I brought CJ a cutting of my fabulous bush as a gift. Who wouldn’t want that?!

I danced on a stony stage (a raised foliage section in CJ’s awesome condo) with two mega-buff guys, dressed as bunny rabbits. Thank phew I planned my choreography so precisely in advance or I’d have looked ridic!! A ton of people asked me afterwards if I’m a professional dancer, so I’m totes thinking that all those years of childhood tap classes finally paid off. Yee-haw!!

 

Dancing with bunny hottie

Dancing with bunny hottie

 

I know, my choreography is incrediblé

I know, my choreography was incrediblé

 

I had fabulous chats with so many beautiful hot-skis. I met a dude from the business end of PS Café, but he could neither confirm nor deny that they’re planning to name a dish after me: the Eggspat Somebody, perhaps. It’s likely to involve eggs. Beyond that, it’s totes hush-hush.

Somehow I ended up in the pool, floating majestically on an inflatable swan with one of my Expaterati girlies, and a Divine Youth from Guildford who had the dulcet tones of an actoooor. (We can’t have crossed over at RADA as he was at least a decade my junior.)

Painfully, I couldn’t attend the after-party because the next day was helper’s day off, and on top of that, Max has started displaying rage towards Froo Froo dog. It was bad enough with the Millster, but Don texted me at midnight to say: “Come home now, Max is awake and beating up your stupid dog”. Rude.

So as a good parent, and a good dog mutha, what else could I do, but make haste to my glamorous Emerald Hill shophouse home..?

When I got there, everyone, Froo Froo included, was fast asleep.

Well, happy birthday, CJ! You ARE the most majorly smokingest hawtie on the island of Singapura. Even the moon blushed for you that night.

If any dear readers were at the party and got pics I can add below (with facial blurrage), please tweet them to me @expatEJ

 

My natural red hair looked fabulous. Thanks, keratin!

My natural red hair looked fabulous. Thanks, keratin!

Rap Expat Stylee

So I was out today, like any normal day, doing my usual rounds of the malls on Orchard Road (gotta stay on top of new shopping amazenesses), and I saw an expat woman walking her dog. Not partic remarkablé, I hear you say, but what was in fact tremendously remarkablé was that this dog was wearing an utterly awesome dokini. Froo Froo already has a huge-acious collection of dokinis, but this one was nothing short of

DIVINE.

I smiled my lovely Kate Middleton smile at the woman (I was wearing a Diane vom Furstenbobby dress so I was basically a teleported version of Kate herself, unpregnant), and as da beat over-took my earthly presence, I asked her a nice enough question…

I could’ve kept going, but I stopped at that point because, not only did the woman not let me take a picture of her dog to put on my blog, and not tell me where she got the dokini, but she just stared at me, all weird and horrificated. Like there’s something wrong with a stranger doing a bit of free-stylin’ about your dog at the junction of Scott’s and Orchard. And then she walked off! I thought I heard her say “head case” as she went, but I’m not sure. Rudeness much!! Some people just don’t know how to behave in public places.

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Hold up

P.S. It’s actually not a normal day today. It’s actually my birthday. 39, ARGH!! Thank goodness I’m looking so hot, or 39-ness plus this morning’s rudeness could have pushed me over the edge of reasonality, into an abyss that even Kanye in a white Rolls-Royce Phantom couldn’t rescue me from. Totes <3 Kanye. Who doesn’t, right??? That Kimmy is one lucky ladeee.

Five Top Tips for Becoming an Expat Wife in Singapore

Moving country can be a difficult gig, but Singapore is one of the easiest places on the planet to move to as an expat wife. Here are my amazebobs tips, based on my expert expertise, and that of my genius Expaterati girlies:

1. Join the social networking groups as soon as you know you’re coming here

The Singapore Expat Wives group, or SEW, is the stuffier group, but it has a gazillion members. So as long as you’re asking for mundane advice (and please use the search button first to avoid roastage), you’re good to go.

The Real Singapore Expat Wives group is a bit grittier. It also has a gazillion members, and you can #anonymouspost about anything intimate or awkz.

Be warned though, sweet innocents, if you post something controversial on either page, you may be inviting upon yourself a sh** storm of biblical proportions. You won’t even necessarily know it’s controversial until it’s too late.

There are many many other awesome FB groups and pages, such as Woman Abroad in Singapore (interesting and quirky content that you won’t find elsewhere), Stork’s Nest (supportive and informative espacio for mothers), and Singapore Expat Women and Business (for um, women in business). Tons of fabulous FB stuff out there. Where oh where would we be without the book of the faces?

2. Forget everything you think you know about pricing

This is particularly true of cheese and alcohol. If you allow yourself to recall prices of such items in Europe, Oz or the US, you will find that guilt obstructs enjoyment, and that is simply unacceptable.

You must wipe from your brain all knowledge of non-Singaporean pricing. Should you agonise over ways around this problem, you will only be inviting more wrinkleage upon yourself. And Botox, ladees, is pretty damn pricey here too. So cut out the middle-woman. Practice pricing acceptance as part of your daily meditation regime.

If all else fails to justify freedom of expenditure, glut thy sorrows on the Seoul expat wife. Cheese is even more expensive there. Like f crazy expensive. Manchego?? Wave b’bye to the soft-top Maserati if manchego is your staple in South Korea.

3. The helper issue

It is not uncommon to arrive on these shores convinced that one will not engage live-in help; only to find oneself, some months later, engaging live-in help. If I had a Sing $ for every time that happened, I’d be even more fabulously wealthy than I already am. At least two Louis Vuits per season richer, and as dear readers will know, I am not one to embroider factualisation.

Despite the doubt you might arrive with that it cannot be virtually impossible to cost-effectively hire part or full-time help who live out, I’m afraid that it is indeed virtually impossible. The cost of a decently-salaried live-in equates to approx 15 hours per week part-time (wow, so many dashes in one sentence! I am rocking those dashes!!). Even if you’re thoroughly rolling in cash and bathing in Veuve Click, I think you’ll find that you might want to bite the bullet.

4. Get yourself an Expaterati gang

Living so far away from our family and old-school friendses, each and every one of us needs a gang. Several gangs is even better. We need babeses who are there for us in our moments of need, and lots of expat ladees are awesome at this. All you have to do is reach out, and before you know it, there will be babeses needing you right back.

Your gang will hook you up with other gangs (if they don’t, this is not a good gang), and raise new possibilities for you to spread your wings. Kite-surfing, gaming, knitting, pole-dancing, volunteering, kick-boxing, wine-tasting, writing, swinging, chess, yoga-zumba-lates, getting trolleyed with your girlies just because it’s Wednesday… An endless stream of undiscovered potential awaits your embrace.

You also need your gang(s) because you must not put all your eggs in the husband basket. This WSJ article just proves what I’ve said time and time again, that expat marriages are a tricky biz. Should your marital investments start to go offshore, identify one or two truly trusted sistas (not the whole gang) to confide in.

5. Work, don’t work, be a SAHM, or be a M who doesn’t SAH much

The choice is yours, and yours alone. Don’t let anyone tell you which path is the right one, or make you feel less of a humanoid hottie for what you decide to do with your time. But FFS, do what makes you happy (yes, I should be a life coach, but I don’t have time right now).

If you choose to brunch, lunch, pedi, and sun yourself by the pool, do it with gusto, not guilt. Particularly as mammasitas, guilt is a killer, so while you’re doing your utmost to be a good enough mum/ mom to your irritants, get out there and be a good enough sista to yourself. Own it!! Irritants grow up, you know, and when they do, we must not have become dried up anxious old prunes with no other passions. In the timeless words of Voltaire, tend to your garden, babeses. That applies to belowdecks too. Tend to those gardens. Vigorously.


As a brief précis, that about covers the essential points. There are 64 others in my full draft version, but the ones above will pack neatly into your ludicrously expensive carry-on Rimowa, and serve you well while you’re figuring out the rest. Good luck, stay in touch, and viva la Expaterati!!

Join the Expaterati

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Image source: http://therealsingapore.com/content/chan-chun-sing-lee-kuan-yew-your-tireless-effort-inspired-us-all

Image source: http://therealsingapore.com/content/chan-chun-sing-lee-kuan-yew-your-tireless-effort-inspired-us-all

Two Awful Little Expat Words: We’re Leaving

Since Tuesday, Don has gradually started speaking to me again. It was getting pretty hashtag awkz, with young Angel around. It’s bad enough having marital issues in the presence of little kids like Max and the Millster, but 16-year-olds apparently pick up on the vibe more strongly, even if they “present otherwise” (thus spake cousin Clarathustra the psychologist). Pathetically, Don used Angel as his excuse to resume our speakage (p***y), telling me, “It must be hard for her to be so far away from her mother, her friends, and her normal life. I don’t want to make it any harder for her, with us not talking”.

[Um, us not talking?? It’s him who hasn’t been talking to me! I’ve just been not talking right back!!]

As if I don’t know “how hard it must be”! FFS, I gave up my friends, my family, and my career to come out here. Ok, so I have always wanted to be an expat wife, and I wake up every day to an enviable lifestyle with awesome weather, endless social engagements, and full-time help. That doesn’t mean I don’t get how hard it is!! If you cut me, do I not bleed?! Plus, being the incredibly empathic person that I am, I can’t avoid feeling for what Angel is going through. In fact, I have decided to do a second On the Skype Couch With Emma-Jane (and cousin Clara) to highlight the very important issues facing children and young people in global transition.

Anyway, so Don starts talking to me again, and after a few mundanities like, “Can you please put floss on the shopping list?”, and a transparent attempt at ingratiation, “Your hair looks nice, have you had it done?” (yes, like four days ago!!), last night he said the following spectacularly unexpected thing: “EJ, my next role is firming up. It’ll most likely be Europe or the U.S. So we’ll be leaving Singapore this summer… Or some time in the next two to six months. You knew that anyway, right?”

No, I don’t exacto recall knowing that!!

Because of our precarious relational situation, I smiled my loveliest Kate Middleton smile, nodded a ton, and – as Don left for a work night out – went swiftly to my meditation corner with the Buddha water feature and a nice Nag Champa burn. Once there, I popped open a bottle of Veuve Click (I must’ve grabbed it from the wine fridge along the way), fumbling somewhat due to the tears cascading make-up grease onto my trembling fingers. Nearly dropping the bottle, I commanded my inner adult to pull herself together. When that command failed, I sat down. Abandoned to my grief, I wept.

(And today, I’m wondering if he has just conjured up this moving stuff to avoid talking about Liz? Seems a little drastic, but that’s men for you…)

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Is the Term “Expat” Really Reserved for Whities??

My week got off to a bad start, what with Don not talking to me because of the stuff that I allegedly did at his bday party.

It’s not just this, I’ve since realised, that has lowered my mood of late. I read an article in the Guardian online last week, which really upset me. I am still feeling the pain of it, hence thusly I am sharing my disturbance with you, as I am sure you will understand.

The article says that only us whities are called “expats”, whereas anyone who isn’t white is an “immigrant”. Now I would say that an expat is someone living a fabulous temporary life in a country other than their own, but I have tons of non-blanc Expaterati friends, who are 100% expats, as far as I’m concerned.

So it super bugs me that the author has used racialistic parameters to define a word that totes isn’t about race. It just feels like stirring, and does this world of ours really need more aggro? No, babeses, it doesn’t. Let’s leave that crap to ISIS.

I felt so glum that I Skyped with cousin Clara the psychologist to get her take on the matter. Her conclusion was that the article “says more about the author’s experiences, and the bias of his own psyche than about a definitive, global perspective. Had the story focused on the concept of white privilege, or on an objective discussion of out-dated, but still present, colonial attitudes among some expats, perhaps the writer could have moved beyond unconstructive provocation to a more meaningful discourse. Unfortunately…” bla bla bla…

I stopped listening because Clara wasn’t making me feel any better. After clicking IPhone_calling_screen copy, I messaged her to say my wifi must have dropped out. Love that about online comms: no hashtag awkz, just one click and you’re free to go.

After that I went for a dosa in Little India with my Expaterati girlie, Priya. Then we headed to Chanel to get another pair of their amazebobs espadrilles, and spent the rest of the day chatting at the Tanglin Club pool. If my sista Priya isn’t an expat, I serioso don’t know who is, lah. Colour me baffed.

 

Photo: http://www.mylifeinsin.com/2013/04/murugans-idli-shop-lovely-dosa-thosai.html

Photo: http://www.mylifeinsin.com/2013/04/murugans-idli-shop-lovely-dosa-thosai.html

In the Heat of the Expat BBQ Moment

Stoke logo

Well, thank eff it’s Monday. It has NOT been a fabulous expat weekend. Happy Mother’s Day?? I don’t think so.

Saturday’s BBQ for Don’s birthday was technically awesome, thanks to moi. The Stoke BBQ delivery people made me look like the hostess with the mostestes, as did the caterers, dressed up in gourmet sausage costumes. The chunes were bangin. Michelle’s vajazzling was a tad blinding due to her (frankly excessively) low bikini pant, but no one complained. Quite the reverse, bizarrely. I saw her handing out her business cards. Shameless self-promotion just sickens me, as you know, dear readers.

Froo Froo Dog looked stunning in her dokini. Now that she has learned to assert herself, thanks to the dog therapy, she has really come into her own. I looked as amazebobs as the dog (if only Don could have seen beyond Liz. OK, Don my love, you want vagenitical cunticulitis, you can have it!!).

It was all perfect until late in the night (so I am told, but it can’t be truesome), when I supposedly grabbed Liz by the throat, and growled, “You filthy beep with your gaping infected beep! I know what you’re up to!!”

Allegedly, I then proceeded to use language unbefitting of an expat wife in polite company, informing her that she was not welcome in my home and that she must depart tout de suite.

This sounds so unlike me that I am certain it didn’t happen. Having no recollection of the night (just a spot of totes normal amnesia, nothing crazy or anything, and I only had a teensy bit to drink), and not wanting to ask my friends, or god forbid, the caterers, I messaged Will yesterday. He came up with these ridic assertions.

So it was Will who reported them to me, and it was Will who told me about Liz and Don in the first place. How can I possibly trust his testimony when he is such a filthy philanderer himself?? By the sounds of it, he is making a foul and deliberate attempt to scramble my brain, but hear me now, this brain is not for scrambling. No!!

Anyway, for some reason Don isn’t currently speaking to me, and has instead immersed himself in helping our new house-guest, Angel, to feel at home. Oh how noble!! Because I was unfortunately unable to rise yesterday morning, he took the kids out to show Angel around the local area, ie most of the island. I believe they brunched at Dempsey, and dinnered in Tiong Bahru, but I don’t know what went on in between.

The fact that Angel eats at all astounds the hell out of me. She’s a 5’11 bamboo pole. I’m totes not jealous, but what a 16-year-old is doing in possession of legs like hers is utterly beyond me. (What has she done to earn those legs?! Nothing!!!) According to what she told me today at breakfast, as she ate the white of a single boiled egg, she had “a nice day yesterday”, and “kinda” likes it here. She has said nothing about the events of Saturday night, so I’ll assume she must have gone to bed and missed my alleged outburst, if it occurred at all, which it probably didn’t.

She started at the Australian School today, and hopefully she’ll just make a ton of friends, get on with whatevs these kids do, and stay mostly out of my hair for as long as she’s with us. I totes don’t need another stress in my hair at the mo, dear readers. I’m at the salon right now, having my colour boost (colour that just enhances the natural colour, so it’s not like my hair isn’t naturally this colour), and keratin treatment. After my five hours here, I’ll be “going to the dentist” wink wink. Expat Dental does Botox now : )

I’m ahead of schedule for my usual appointment with Lady B, but there’s something super-unsettling about having a wrinkle-free teenager in da house, and much as I tried, I couldn’t chant or yogue my way through those feelings. (Come on, Yogue! Why didn’t Madonna go there? I should totes do an awesome yoguing vlog, if only I had the time.)

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Froo Froo & her Expaterati Dogerati girlies in their dokinis

Ass IF Don Would Do That!

If you recall, some weeks ago I asked Will to follow Don at a convenient time. Not in a nasty way, and of course I totes trust my husband, but I felt a tad disconcerted to find naked pics of Liz on his iCloud. The convenient time was last night, and this is what Will just messaged me (ignore the first bit – that’s from when he started ignoring me after my amazebobs feminist mission):

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Knowing the dangers of the screenshot, not trusting Will, and fearing that anything I type could one day be used against me in a court of law, I had no choice but to connect by actual speakage on the phone.

Will told me that it was a swinging party – what now, now??? – and added the gruesome detail that he witnessed this unutterably unspeakable act occurring.

At that, I had heard enough. I thanked him for his assistance in the matter, re-confirming that absolutely no blackmail had taken place on my part. Threatening to tell his wife about his cheating ways does not count as blackmail because he is totes in the wrong anyway.

Despite my shocked and delirious state, I somehow found my way to the wine fridge and then to the roof terrace, where I lay in the pool, drinking Veuve Click from the bottle with a tremendously long straw (only alcoholics shouldn’t drink in the morning). Immersing my hot self in the cool waters, and staring up at a care-free sky, my mind tried its bestest to find a way out of this emotional quagmire.

It’s Don’s birthday today, and the party is tomorrow. Liz will be there. Her loser husband will be there. What, precisely, is the decorum in this situation, I asked myself, and I ask you now, dear readers. For I know not, and I grow weary a-wondering. My chi is very much in a bad place this day : (

Ass if Friday the 13th hadn’t already taken its toll, while I wondered lonely as a cloud on the roof terrace, an iCal alert pinged on my phone: “Angel arriving 1pm”. Argh!! With so much happening in my life, not to mention this fresh hell, I totes forgot that my Australian teenage stepsister is coming to live with us because her ridic mother can’t cope… Today!! It so crept up on me! I can’t bear it! Why didn’t I try harder to be less nice, and back out of the arrangement??? WHYYYYYY?!!

While I ran, arms flailing, to the rear-wing room I was supposed to make into a bedroom for Angel weeks ago, I questioned for the gazillionth time how on earth, in a six-bedroom, six-bathroom house one could possibly accommodate another human being. There’s no way I’m giving the help the helper’s room, ie the storage space off the laundry room. No way! If I did that, it would utterly scupper my online campaign for a second helper* because Don would say there isn’t enough space in the space. So she has to keep one of the real rooms, to share with potential Help Number Two.

I got to the room ear-marked for Angel, and miracle of miracles, it had been transformed into… A totes appropes bedroom for a teenager! Posters of One Direction and airbrushed celebs up on the walls and everything. The help must’ve done it. I put it in the house diary some time ago, but who knew she’d go all out like this?

I’ve must dash now, to make myself AHAP (as hot as possible) for stupid annoying irritating p-in-the-a Angel’s arrival. Gotta show the teenagers where hot is at!! iCal also told me that she’s joining us for dinner tonight, to celebrate Don’s stupid annoying irritating p-in-the-a birthday. Mega-hotness therefore required from moi.

Thanks to my extraordinary strategies of resilience, I will get through this day. I will say nothing to Don, and continue to be an awesome expat wife until I have all the facts.

I will now apply a Korean pig-placenta mask (not tested on animals, maybe), meditate for a full twenty minutes in the presence of my Buddha water feature, accompanied by a nice burn of Nag Champa, drink 500ml of green smoothie; and then, all will be well with the world. Will is obviously a liar, angry at my snubbage, and jealous of my marital bliss.

(As if people actually do that!! How ridic.)


* Not looking so good : (
I need 1,000 likes on my FB post, and I’m not even at 100. Babeses, HELP MEEEEEEEEEE!!!! First world problems are totes still problems. Click on the pic and share like your life depends on it!!

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Ladeee Luuuuuv

Following the incrediblé resounding success of the Fake Scale campaign – which hasn’t actually started yet, but it’s tremendously resounding anyway – another genius notion has occurred to moi. I am calling it “Ladeee Luuuuv”. This may sound like a lesbian ting, and could possibly lead to increased dykee-looking behaviour, but it isn’t really about that. It’s about the sistahood, sistas.

So I think we know this already, but women can often be super mega-mean to other women. As you’ll know if you’re a liker of my Facebook Page, last week I was floating down Orchard Road on my way back from Jane’s Pilates class, and this woman walked past me, wearing the ugliest yellow jeans in the universe. Under her breathe she said, obviously to me, “Botox much??”

Firstly, no sweetie, not much actually.

And B, jealous much, because I am a fashion expert and know not to dress like you?

And three: what’s it to you what I do with my face?? If you have nothing nice to say, why say anything at all?

Despite their vast array of faults, men would never do that. Because men know that a happy lady is a “generous” lady. Am I right, gentlemen ; )? (A rhetorical question, hence no need to answer it, all two of my readers in possession of a Y chromosome. And of those two chappies, only one is straight. So it’s a rhetorical question to you, guy babe.)

This is why I’ve come up with Ladeee Luuuuv, to ask all the sistas out there to just be a little bit nicer to each other, and say at least one nice thing every day to another woman, whether you know her or not. Like, “Babes, I heart your hairdo”, or “You have such graceful wrists, honey”, or even, “I don’t know you, but I’ll bet you’re a totes lovely person”. If you really can’t think of a single nice thing to say, say nothing. Jog on and find another sista on whom to heap some luuuv.

A blogtastic babe friendee of mine wrote a post along these lines recently, about people judging on looks, especially about ageing. Although I’m v hot and my awesome self-maintenance regime means you’d think I was in my early-thirties (39 approaching fast!), I do feel that all this pressure for women not to look older is ridic. Come on now, the only alternative to ageing is death, and we’re all heading in the same direction. So if we’re lucky enough to remain alive beyond 29, can’t we find a way to make the best of it and encourage each other along the way, rather than dread and despise the process? (I know: I should be a life coach.)

I thusly therefore think that we ladies need to stick up for each other, and for our rights to age howsoevers we want, with or without interventions of our choosing. Most of my Expaterati girlies are great at this already, but I believe we can all do more to get sistas everywhere feeling a ton better about themselves. Let’s do this thing!! Spread some Ladeee Luuuuuv today, babeses! Xx

 

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XOX

 

 

Expat Wife Fashion Go-Tos

I was thinking a few days ago that I should become a fashion consultant for expat wives in Singapore (and beyond!), if only I had the time, which I do not : (.

I would be great at it though because I am constantly being stopped in the street by strangers who tell me how hot I am, and ask where I got my outfit/ accessories from. Having done a weeklong course on iconic looks for tropical climates some years back, I thusly know all that there is to know about floaty versus fitted. Also, I possess an abundance of relevant experience as an expat fashionista who dresses herself daily, and I have many gorgeous Expaterati friendses who really know their onions. Unfortunately (boo!!), I defo do not have time to launch this new career, so I thought the least I could do is create a bespoke, boutique, artisanal written work, detailing the hottest expat wife Looks, and how to achieve them.

So, dear readers and babeses, here it is:

Every expat wife is unique in her own special way, but I will present below a state-of-the-art assemblage of awesome Looks that we generally espouse, in order to attain maximum hotness, even in challenging climes.

1. The Labels Look

This expat wife wears sizzling designer gear from head to toe, hairpin (vintage or diamonds) to handbag. Could be mistaken for a Rrrrra-shon, but distinguished by the fact that she would never knowingly wear a yellow jean. (Though how can we be sure what colour we’re wearing anymore, since #thedress??)

To achieve this Look, it is not necessary to buy entirely genuine items, however you will need a certain number of key realees. For example, you must purchase at least one handbag per year priced at US$ 2,000+, and a few bits from Chanel, the Gooch, the Chooster, Loubouties, and Givenchy, albeit at discounted prices. Intersperse those key pieces with fakees, and you’re there.

2. The Asia Boho Look

Likely to be seen in either v flowing or v fitted silks and cottons, purchased on fabulous regional trips, or custom-made by some amazebobs tailor she found on RSEW. ABL will team a cheap bracelet from the Krabi night market with a $20,000 Cartier watch, and throw something freakishly tall (I just heard that from one of my American BFFs – apparently it means expensive) around her ankle for good measure.

In achieving this Look, it doesn’t matter to the unpracticed eye whether you’re combining Asiana market chic with realees or fakees. But babeses, to be honest and stuff, it seriously won’t work with only fakees, and why make a spectacle of yourself if you can’t afford realees? ABL can only be fully achieved if you have access to realees. Otherwise you just look like a hippie. Not to dis hippies, but they were a bit sloppy, and that’s not an adjective that any self-respecting member of the Expaterati should aspire to.

3. The Mainstream Look

This sweetheart shops at Zara and Banana Republic, and orders from Boden. She wants to be a leeeetle bit out there, but would die if anyone thought, “OMG, what’s she wearing?!”

To reach the un-dizzying heights of the ML, shop at the aforementioned, or any of the mainstream outlets on Orchard Road. The Gap is also great for that stuff. Take note though, ML ladies, if you followed the guidelines from the previous categories, you would be way hotter, and your hus would be less likely to develop the dreaded yellow fever. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

4. The Mutha Look

Ladies of this ilk either have no helper, or persist in the charade of mothering like they would at home, should they have been in the desperate situation of being unable to afford a nanny. Or cleaner. Or driver. Or cook. They seek out squashed banana stains and bad hair days, purely to substantiate a sense of dedication to their irritants.

In the unlikely event that you would wish to achieve this Look, wear whatevs. Just please make sure you have your breast pads properly installed so that they don’t fall out as you wave b’bye to your husband.

5. The Worker Chic Look

This is the most challenging Look of all, due to the need to present oneself as simultaneously powerful, assertive (but sheesh forbid aggressive!), and femininely hot; and all this while moving from freezing cold A/C to hair-crazying 35 degrees.

The method in this madness is as follows, sweetses: layering. So I have these babelicious lacy bustiers I bought while spelunking at Aber & Fitch, and I pair them with a shear Marc Jacobs top and an H & M (yes, go there! No one will know!!) pencil skirt, finalising the project with killer Loubouties… And there you have it! A Do Not Mess With Me outfit. Add a realee Rolex and a gigantic Alex McQueen bag, and you’re a-go-go.

Additional sub-category: The Gym Bunny
Among these five main categories, the Gym Bunny is a consistent apparition, regardless of age, race, creed, or how sexy one looks in exercise apparel. All expat wives will, at one time or another, show up anywhere in their finest gymmies, and LuluLemon will undoubtedly feature highly. It is a truth universally acknowledged.

So there you have it. It has not been easy to categorise the fashion go-tos of the expat wife, but I think you’ll find that I have reached an epiphany with this exposé. Should you wish to add another Look, please do so in the comments.

(Don’t forget the hot undies, babeses! These are from H & M, but tell no one.)

The Great Big Bagel Debacle

bagels

I was mega-busy this morning with The Fake Scale campaign (deets coming soon, peeps, and a gazillion thanks to the ladies who have come forward to co-captain the mission). Because yesterday was no-helper day, I got abso nada done and I really need to get the logo sorted. Argh!! I should also launch a campaign to get Don to agree to a second helper. It’s just ridic how much I have to do on Sundays. Cleaning the juicer is shear hell, and I’m sposed to do that at the same time as supervising the irritants!! How, might I ask?? Don, of course, does not feel my pain. 

I was v busy with #thefakescale for a good 36 minutes, but then I had a brunch date at Sacha’s with the Expaterati girlies – some friendses, some not so much. The meet-up wasn’t until 11AM, and although it’s only a little walk across the street for me, I had to leave home an hour early, to take the long route and get lots of steps in. I’ve joined up with some of the girlies to compete on getting our daily Fitbit 10,000 steps, and I knew they’d be at the brunch. Frankly, I’m not doing so well. I’m only in the lead most days because I put the damn thing around Froo Froo’s leg when the helper takes her out, or some nights I just wave my arm back and forth a lot. Cheating like that isn’t part of my modus operandi and must be doing untold damage to my chi : (

So I knew I’d be seeing the Fitbit gang, and I abso had to get my numbers up. Expat wives can be so competitive!! Ugh. I did quite awesomely though, arriving at Sacha’s with a lovely healthy glow, in my hot gym gear. Some of us ladies can really rock the gym bunny look, while others, unfortunately, can’t rock any look. That’s what I was pondering while air-kissing the assembled wife tribe. A couple of the not so much friendses had obviously made an effort to look their best, but ouch!! If I wasn’t so busy, I would become a fashion consultant for expat wives. I did a weeklong course once on iconic looks for tropical weather at the London College of Fashion, so I’d be fab at it.

The brunch was fairly fun, with everyone saying how brilliantly I’m doing to keep coming out on top with the steps, but then emerged: the bagel debacle.

Doom and Gloom Wifey started to critique the bagels, saying that it’s so difficult to find a decent bagel in Singapore, and that there just doesn’t seem to be a genuine New York bagel anywhere. “It’s absurd!”, she said, “We’re only 10,000 miles away from NYC. It’s 2015! We should be able to get anything everywhere! How hard can it be?!”

Ever the voice of reason, Flo responded, “Babe, I’m sorry, but what’s the big deal? This place uses proper Jewish recipes, and the bagels here are amazebobs. You’re not from New York. You’re not even American!”

“Well you’re not even Jewish!”, D & G retorted. God, she’s rude.

“No, but neither are you!”, Flo said, looking a bit flustered by that point, but only I could tell. You have to really know her because her face gives little away.

“No, I’m a Buddhist who knows a shitload about bagels, so screw you!”

O. Em. Gee.

I wanted to intervene, but my mouth was full of Reuben. Before I could say something wise to rescue the situation, D & G had picked up her gigantic LV handbag (this season! so jelly of that bag!!), saying, “I’m late for an appointment”, and swooshed away. Oh dear. I hate to take anyone off my awesome Facebook page, but that kind of behaviour is just intolerable. It’ll only get worse. She has to go.

Getting Things Off My Perky Expat Chest

I have a couple of things on my perky D-cup chest today that I need to get off it (studies show that anxiety is 253.7% worse for saggage than breast-feeding), and chanting hasn’t helped at all. My morning green smoothie with organic kale, beetroot, coconut water of course, and red dragon fruit did help a bit, but then I got a text from Chantelle*. Hence Thing Number One on my chest.

“Can we speak, Ems? XO”, read the text.

Ems now, is it?! I think I’ve been too convincing about pretending to like her. Ugh.

When I bit the bullet and gave her a call, she said that it’s all getting much worse with my father’s dementia. She told me that he had a few moments of lucidity recently which gave her hope, but then he descended into a “worse place than before”. OMG, that use of the word “place” to describe a state of mind! I’m sure people say it just to piss me off!! It sounds great when I use it to express the beautiful empathic side of myself, but most people, let’s be honest, can’t carry it off like I can. Cannot, lah.

I thought she was going to follow with her usual woe-is-me modus operandi of: I can’t take it that my husband doesn’t recognise me and thinks he’s married to someone else bla bla bla, self-pityage diatribe. But no! Instead she told me something designed purely to upset me.

“Ems”, (puke), “I wasn’t sure whether to tell you or not, but you’ve been so open and giving towards me – offering to have Angel come to stay and all – so I feel like I owe it to you to be honest.”

Babes, I wanted to say, I didn’t offer to take in your waif ‘n stray wayward daughter. You totes guilted me into it!!

Before I could clarify the situation, and maybe even back out of the whole unwanted teenage house-guest business, Ms Chantilly continued.

“The thing is that there was this moment when your dad seemed like his old self again” – yeah, too right, OLD! And what’s a young piece of A like you doing with a rich OLD guy..? Hmmmm, allow me to a’ponder a mo… –

“And he was so sweet. He thanked me for being a wonderful wife, and honestly, I could’ve cried, it’s been so long since he’s been like that. But then he said the most terrible thing. And I don’t want to tell you, but I think you have a right to know, Ems.”

(FFS, woman! Don’t you see that I don’t care what you have to say?! Just stop calling me Ems!!!)

“He said… he said”, Chantelle started sobbing. V much back to her predictable MO, then.

“He said, Ems, that I’ve been a better wife to him than your mother ever was, with all her other men! Those are his words, hon, not mine. I’m so sorry to break it to you like this. But I thought you should know… Oh, wait… but maybe you know already! God, sorry!! You’re so close to your mum, you probably do know! I’m sure she had her reasons… with whatever was happening… all that moving around… must’ve taken its toll on the marriage, and… like you’re always saying, expat marriages can be so challenging, and…”

Chantelle was floundering around like a big fishy flounder, so I took the opportunity to interject. I arose from the silk-upholstered Georgian chaise longue upon which I had unknowingly reclined, and said, “Babes, of course I knew that! You shouldn’t be stressing about it. Yeah, Mum-ski and me are totes BFFs! She tells me everything”.

Chantelle then went into full-on embarrasada mode, thanked me again for “inviting” Angel to live with us, and, praise be to all that’s holy and decent, got the eff off the phone.

So now I know a heretofore unknown fact about yet another person, but a way less fun one than the others. It’s super fun knowing that Michelle is married to a filthy cheater, and that Liz is a husband-stalker with vagenitical cunticulitis; but this new issue of my own mother being a ho…??

I’m totes not sure how I feel about that.

 


 

Pushing the thought swiftly to one side because it’s so horrendously unthinkable, Thing Number Two that I’ve been argh-ing about is this global problem of airbrushed and photoshopped images messing with my little Milly’s head. It is NOT OK that a four-year-old girl falls over in the middle of the night, trying to “work it” with a thigh gap. Not ok at all!!

I am therefore thusly thinking about using my immense influence as a celebrité blogger to levy a campaign for a “fake scale” rating to be put on images in the meeja (media, babeses). A little bit airbrushed would be a one on the fake scale, and huge chunks cut off bodies would be fake-scaled at five. Genius, right? My idea. I know. Amazebobs.

Only prob is that I don’t know if I really have time to take on a global initiative of this magnitude. Probly, I spose. But will it interfere with my gruelling self-maintenance schedule??

Arghamundo, it’s so tricky being a parent, and a mentalist thought has just popped into my lovely, mysterious brain that maybe I should put my daughter’s needs before mine… Would that be coolio?? Has anyone else had that ground-breaking thought? Relate much??

If I’m going to do this thing, I can’t do it alone. I’ll need all of you – yes, everyone in my (philandering) mother’s aqua aerobics group, and the scrabble group too, and beyond! – to help me launch the campaign. If you’re in, please drop me a line in the comments or email me. Click share on the post if you know anyone who’s up for an awesome mission. I think we need a fab logo and catch-phrase, and I’m happy to use hot pics of myself to really draw a crowd. Hot pics that are only slightly airbrushed, and I will of course apply the fake scale to myself : )

I’m pretty lucky though. I really don’t need a lot of fake to bake. I’m sizzling already! This pic is a zero on the fake scale, my loves. ZERO.

 

Zero on #thefakescale

Zero on #thefakescale

 

 

 

* She’s my father’s trophy bride, FYI.

Hottest Expat BBQ in Singapore City

It’s Don’s birthday in two weeks, and I have taken it upon myself to organise the hottest part in Singapore. It’s the least I can do to divert his attention from the tax money I spent on bringing back a ton of Vic Beck and Alex McQ from London. The theme I’m going with is Hotness, for one: because I am hot, for two: because our Expaterati friendses are hot, and for threely, because in Singers it’s just like totes HOT. Like all the time!! YAY!!!!

So. What I’m going to do is host an awesome BBQ on our roof terrace, with the caterers dressed up as gourmet sausages, and have the guests come in their most scorchio swimwear. Don loves to see me in tiny bikinis (he hasn’t said as much, but who wouldn’t?), and it is his birthday, after all.

I have abso zero clue about BBQs, but I was at a glamorous party the other night, and I met this lovely chappie who’s Kickstarting a business to deliver artisanal meats and apetisers for just this sort of occasion. All I had to do was put in the number of guests, and lah lah lah, it’ll just show up on the day, looking like I spent weeks scouring the planet for awesome stuff. Now I’m not one to promote businesses willy-nilly, as you know, dear readers, (except PS Café: peeps come on! I plug you all the time!! At least name a dish after me!!); but in this case, here’s something I actually need.

After the BBQ, we’ll have bangin’ chunes around the pool and dance in our bikinis and Lebouties. Liz, the husband stalker, will have to be invited because Don likes her douche hus. So Flo and I will have a good old stylee giggle about what’s going on underneath those Lycra bottoms. Argh, get some treatment for that, babe! It’s just not nice!! Dr T will fix you right up.

 

Stoke logo

Only Alcoholics Shouldn’t Drink in the Morning

After my transformational parenting experience the other night, I bounded into Milly’s room on the morning of our trip to get her dressed, for the first time ever on a non-Sunday, and to help her finish packing. I wanted to reassure her that she is beautiful despite not having a thigh gap, so I was a bit disappointed to find her room empty, completely tidy, and her suitcase all packed.

“No mattery!”, I thought to myself, being the tremendously resilient person that I am, and off I cantered downstairs to make breakfast for my sweet children – another first for a non-Sunday, go me!! I was in such a good mood that I decided to make pancakes, of all things! I know!! Ambitious, but that’s me all over, as you know, dear readers.

I could see from the state of the kitchen (argh! So not Downton, babeses!! Cannot get the staff, lah) that the helper had already made pancakes; and there was apparently no one in the house other than Don, up in his office. I waved charmingly to him through the windows off the courtyard, but he didn’t see me as he was engrossed in the screens on his desk. He works so hard, bless him. Even on days that are technically holidays. Of course he’s being stalked by another bird. Who wouldn’t stalk a man like Don?

I rang the helper and discovered that she had taken both kids to the skate park off Orchard for a scoot. “Oh well, no mattery”, I thought again, “I can still… umm, I can still”… And that’s where I totes drew a blank. I had yet another weird, as yet unidentified feeling, and the strangest thing popped up in my pretty head: the empty space in our glamorous ensuite bathroom from a few weeks ago. That awful emptiness where, as it turned out, my designer loo brush had been (since then, happily replaced with even lovelier water closet ware). What now, now? Why would that vile thought invade my so sane brain?

To exorcise the unpleasant image, I walked from room to room for a while, looking for something useful I could do. Something motherly perhaps. Drawing a mega zero, I found myself by the wine fridge, and although I would never dream of drinking at 9.37 in the morning, I realised that it was a day of celebration. Chinese New Year! Gong Xi and all that!! So I opened a bottle of Veuve to toast all those gazillion nice Chinese people out there, particularly our Chinese hosts in lovely Singapore. Rude not to, and we weren’t leaving for Penang until the afternoon.

Sitting in our rooftop pool with my champers and my Facebook newsfeed for company, I stopped feeling all those ugh feelings. What’s the big dealio with morning celebrational beverages anyhoo? Nothing, right babeses? Anyone who thinks there’s a problem is ridic and crazybobs, and must have a drink prob themselves. It’s pure projection, which is v nasty stuff.

I must’ve dozed off on a lounger (due to my late night of being a great mother) because the next thing I knew, the helper was standing over me, saying, “Ma’am, Sir is looking for you. We are leaving now on the vacation”.

Argh!! I sprang into action (concealing the empty bottles in the ornamental pool towel cupboard – the helper can be so judgmental), threw the last few bikinis and lippies into my ludicrously expensive Rimowa suitcase, put on my gorgeous travelling outfit (it’s important to look one’s hottest when travelling, particularly as a celebrité blogger), and sloped elegantly to the front door, just as the limo cab was pulling up outside. I’m so good at travelling. I can do it like the back of my hand.

We really had a great time in Penang. This trip, unlike Chrimbo in Boracay, we took the help with us. I told Don that if he stuck to his “family holidays are for family” policy, Froo Froo Dog might well poop in his car. Accidentally, of course. That dog is so bold now, since her amazebobs therapy session : ).

We came back today on an early flight – early enough to attend a fab free-flow lunch date at the Westin with our Expaterati crew, and everyone was enthralled by my tales of our super lovely hol. I do totes heart Malaysia. I can see where they’re going with the whole “truly Asia” thing. I think it’s a little misleading though, because increasingly it’s more “truly Middle East”. Which is also awesome because I totes heart Dubai too.

 

Where we didn't stay in Penang.  Anyone with a proven track record in marketing, PLEASE contact these chaps.

Where we didn’t stay in Penang.
Anyone with a proven track record in marketing, PLEASE contact these chaps.