Sneaky Snogging on Airplane?!

Holiday snaps of Vagi Wraps

Holiday snaps of Vagi Wraps

Well, babeses, I’m writing to you from the airport because, although I was having the best holiday everrrrrr, like I always do, it was also pretty crap. The encounter I had on the first day with my least favourite member of the Singapore Expaterati got me off to a bad start, and then the children were driving me over the edge, without our helper with us. Furthermore, spending so much time with the little irritants was in direct contravention of Item Six of my New Year’s resolutions.

Then yesterday Don said something about having lots of work to catch up with, so I thought, right! You get back to work, and I’ll get back to my proper holiday. Yayay!! Can’t wait to be home, rollerblading down Orchard Road, after a few glasses of Veuve Click, with the wind cascading through my fabulous flaming locks! Singas, look out! Momma’s comin’ home : )!!! До Свидания, Boragrad!


It’s a bit later and we’re on the plane back. I love using the internet on flights, just because I can. Plus, I wanted to let you know ASAP about the shocking revelation that has just revealed itself to mine eyes. You’re not going to believe this, but I SWEARS it’s truesome.

So. Doom and Gloom Expat Wifey’s husband, Fred, and his (male!!) PA are on our flight, but they haven’t spotted me as I’m quite inconspicuous when I want to be, and we’re sitting a few rows behind them (no, not in Economy!). Right after take off, they ordered champagne, clinked glasses, had a quick glance around to make sure no one was watching (haha!!), and then… They snogged! OMG!! As if swinging among the Expaterati wasn’t shocking enough! Now we have this married expat chap having a flingthing with his blokie assistant!! What else is going on in our very midst? I dread to think, dear readers, I really do.

It’s no wonder though because that wife of his is a mega-drag and if I was a gay guy, Mr PA would well be on my wuddya?-hells-to-the-ya list!!

I’d better go because it’s only a short flight and I need to watch at least one film, as well as find something from the inflight shopping mag to buy that I don’t already have. Tricky!

Ooooh, tuna wasabi yum yum!

Ooooh, tuna wasabi yum yum!

Just the Usual Expat Hol in Paradise

A spot of beach art, where the other half (3/4? 7/8?) lives.

A spot of beach art, where the other half (3/4? 7/8?) lives.

Following my completes crappola Chrimbo (who would have thought it would’ve sucked so badly that morning when I was making my Expat Exmas Message, like Her Maj?), we are now on our fabulous holiday in Boracay. Boragrad, if you must know, babeses, LOL.

Another top-notch hotelee por supesto, to wind away all the stresses and strains of my equally fabulous life. That said, even with the kids’ club, I’m rather wishing we’d brought the help along. I had forgotten the full horror of the tedium that bath and bedtime can be with Max and Mills. I am having to do it myself!! And I don’t mean supervising! So, after a full day of lounging in the sun, and attending to my rigorous health and beauty regime at the gym and spa, I then get myself all worked up on the few evenings we don’t hire a sitter, thanks to the irritants. Well happy bleeping holidays to me! Don, as always, said that bringing the helper was “unconscionable”, and that holidays should be just the family. Hmmmmm. This means that I don’t really have a holiday!! Which leads me to conclude that:

Paradise – Help = Almost Hell

Gandhi said something very similar when he observed that, “Interdependence is and ought to be as much the ideal of man as”… I’ve lost the rest of the quote, but the skinny is that it’s totes ideal for me to depend on my helper because she depends on us for her livelihood; and it’s totes reasonable for me to have a bit of a sh** hol without her.

As if things weren’t bad enough, guess, dear readers, who is here. One of my all-time least favourite members of the Singapore Expaterati: Doom and Gloom Expat Wifey. Ugh-amundo. I know you feel my pain.

On our very first day here, I noticed Mills in the pool, playing with another little girl who looked vaguely familiar. Returning my attention to my iPad edition of Vogue, I heard a kerfuffle from the pool, as an adult waded in – yes, D & G Wifey – telling Milly to stop pulling the other girl’s hair. Oh Lordy, Mills! Being the responsible parent that I am, I had no choice but to put down my iPad, and dive elegantly into the pool, to pretend to reprimand Milly. Poor kid. The other little girl, Janine, has obviously inherited her mother’s dour looks and tote lack of humour, so I’m sure she got nothing more than she deserved, but what else could I do??

Once I’d forced Mills into a half-arsed apology, I then had to make polite conversation with D & G: how lovely to bump into you, what a coincidence (yeah, right), how’s your hol, are you having a good time, ra ra ra.

She was apparently gagging for someone to talk to, because she launched straight into her standard doom and gloom diatribe. I noted from her lack of woven resort bag (only available to the upper echelons) that she must not be staying in one of the villas. Probably in the main cell block. In the timeless words of Beyoncé, “Sucks to be you right nooooow”. Wise woman, that Queen Bee.

“Oh, I suppose I’m having a good time…” she began, her dull preamble warning of so much worseness ahead.

“I wanted to go home for Christmas, or maybe skiing, but Fred’s PA couldn’t take much time off, so Fred decided we’d better not go too far away. And they’re flying back before me and the kids anyway.”

“But, babes”, I told her, “Skiing is just so wet and cold, and accidenty. And England is totes miz right now, with the yucky climate, and all that economy stuff… still… I think… Here we’ve got the beautiful relaxing beach, and the lovely weather… Um, apart from the whole tropical storm thang, but that’ll pass”.

“Yeah, I know….,” she said, and for a moment I thought she might shut up, so that I could dash back to my sun bed. Alas, alack, and mega-bummer, I was profoundly mistaken. She went on.

“It’s just that we’ve been on so many of these trips: Bali, Langkawi, Krabi, Koh Samui, Yogyakarta, Hoi An…”, she continued, as I switched off and admired how smooth my freshly waxed Brazilian was looking.

“Bla bla bla, fa ba na noo fa bla, and at this point, the whole of Southeast Asia has just merged into one big blur of white sand, palm trees, and resorts. When I look back over the years, I can barely distinguish one holiday from the next. How sad is that?!”

I re-engaged with her bla when I noticed that the gel nail on my thumb was lifting, and much as I loathe nail-biting, I found myself gnawing at it.

“And what really gets me is”, she droned on, “I’m getting so tired of being the well-off Westerner, surrounded by locals calling me Ma’am, who bow and scrape in the name of good customer service. I can’t relax when I know that the people around me are so much worse off. It’s the inequality of it all! What does it teach our children?”

[OH GOD, kill me!! JUST KILL ME NOW!!!, I thought prettily.]

“And Thailand! Just awful. We were there last year for Christmas, and I heard such incredibly devastating stories about the tsunami. Whole families, wiped out. Babies, children. I thought, how can I sit on this idyllic beach, knowing what happened right here, just a few years ago? Horrendous.”

I tasted thick saltiness, and looked down at my thumb to find that it was bleeding. The woman was boring me so much that I had actually started to bite off my own hand. Enough was enough.

“Darling sweetie babes”, I managed to say, following a quick check-in with my higher power, “The fact is that without us well-off whities coming and spending our spondooli, these nice people wouldn’t even have jobs. We’re doing them a favour! The least we can do is have a good time, honey. Don’t we owe them that much?!”

I hoped that my impassioned words might turn the situation around, but she got her mouth straight back in there: “That’s a ridiculous argument! The fact is that our spondooli, as you call it, is because of disproportionate salaries, earned through the exploitation of people just like the ones working in this hotel, borne out of their disadvantage and our good fortune. We did nothing to deserve this, any more than they deserve the poverty they come from!”

O
EM
GEE

I found, then, that I was sucking my (half-eaten, bloody) thumb – something I haven’t done since childhood. Doom and Gloom Expat Wifey woman, I shouted silently in my head, it’s only Day One, and you have RUINED my holiday.

Gott sei dank, D & G’s helper suddenly appeared from nowhere, saying, “Ma’am, I am the one to take Janine for her nap?”

D & G nodded, “Yes please, Reyann”.

“Well, that’s lovely anyway!”, I chipped in, determined now to either lift this bleeping woman’s mood or get the bejesus away from her.

“At least you have the help with you!! Lucky old you, babes! Don never wants to do that, and frankly it’s a nightmare come truesome!”

“You say that”, (oh ffs, despite my awesome adorableness of niceness, she was finding a way to persist), “but the thing is that I knew she would have a better Christmas here with us than lonely in Singapore, while all her friends are working, or if we sent her home to her family. When she goes home, she comes back a stone lighter, and completely exhausted. Do you know what she does when she has a holiday at home?”

It was patently clear that I didn’t give a rat’s bottom, but evidently the woman has none of my empathic or intuitive skills when it comes to observing the responses of others. Instead of noticing that I was desperate to get back to Vogue, she…

Kept.

On.

Talking.

“She works on the family farm! For fifteen hours a day, every day! Can you believe that?! And not only that -”

While she was talking, her husband’s PA sauntered over, a vision in white linen.

“Mrs Davis,” he murmured – golly, such a treacle voice for a man! how divine!!, “Mr Davis asked me to tell you that he and I unfortunately have work to do, and will be gone for some time. He’s so sorry. He booked you a few treatments at the spa, and I’m awfully sorry I didn’t let you know earlier, because the first appointment is in five minutes. There’s a buggy waiting for you at the lobby. You should probably hurry. Have a great time!”

And with that, the delightful cloud of a man floated away on the honeyed gusts of his own voice.

What a charming chappie, I thought, and how fortuitous that:

A. D & G’s sweet husband had booked her a pile of fab treatments,

and

2.) She was gone, and I wouldn’t have to listen to her hideous whining any longer.

 

I got back to my Vogue, but promptly fell asleep. I must have been plain plum tuckered by that woman’s chi. Assaulted, I would say. I have had to do a veritable sh**load of chanting since then to cleanse myself.

EJ’s Amazebobs Expat NY’s Resolutions

Fireworks image

Happy Twenty Fifteen, to all my Expaterati and non-Expaterati lovelies across the globe, and beyond!! Here are my resolutions for the year ahead, and I can’t wait to hear yours. Lemme know in the comments! I hope one of your rezzis is to comment more on my bloggie-ogg : ) You know you want to!!

  1. Cut down on drinking (and smoking, even though I really don’t anyway) when in plain view of the help, due to her huge flappy mouth.
  2. Shop more.
  3. Go on more fabulous holidays.
  4. Attend more events and parties.
  5. Get chosen for Fit For Fashion.
  6. Spend less time with the children.
  7. Find a second helper.
  8. Keep on being an amazing multi-tasking mother, a fabulous wife, burgeoning celebrité blogger, & all-round awesomeness trailing spouse!

 

Wishing you a ton of mwa and so much <3 in 2015. I look forward to seeing you Singapore Expaterati. If you play your cards right, I’ll let you buy me a beverage (just the three though!). And to all you non-Sing peeps, come see me!! I’m sure you’ll love staying at the Mandarin, just down the street from us. You’re welcome any time. Don’t thank me : )

Luv ya!

EJ x

Merry Expat Exmas Mega-Fiasco

Well, dear readers, members of the Expaterati, Ladies and Gentlemen, I hope you had a Merry Chrimbo, because I am sorry to say that I totes did not. Despite all my efforts to be good this year, and to give my family a lovely day, Santa basically dropped a bag of flaming poop on my doorstep.

The helper had the morning off, so I made everyone a beautiful breakfast of scrambled eggs with smoked salmon, and mimosas. Well, I supervised. Even though he is almost 7 years old, Max is still miserably bad at cracking eggs, so he got a lot of shell in the mix. Then he had the heat turned up too high, which made the scrambled eggs into murderous lumps of orange fishy sponge. Ugh.

Mummy was in charge of the mimosas. She opened the champagne far too brusquely, and the pop made Froo Froo dog pee all over the floor. Mummy then proceeded to pour herself and Don huge measures of champas vs orange juice, but gave me only the tiniest bit of bubbles, with mostly pulp. Not only that, she insisted on making fresh OJ, which meant that I had to spend several hours of my Christmas Day cleaning the juicer! I had been hoping to bust a chill after breakfast, maybe catch some rays and a swim on the roof terrace. Thanks for ruining that, Mummy!

Max and Milly were of course completes over-excited about opening their presents, and their awful noise also scuppered my chill plans. By midday I was worn out, so I went back to bed while Don sloped off to his cigar club, and Mummy and the help took the irritants to church.

When everyone got back, we did our obligatory Skype sessions with the family back home. I could really have done with more sleep, but I made the sacrifice, in keeping with this season of giving.

I don’t know why I did though, because all I got in return for my efforts was a ton of grief about the presents the helper had ordered on Amazon. I told her quite plainly to get pretties for the women, and toys and gadgets for the children and men. That’s pretty clear lah, ya?? Ya, lah, you agree, of course!

Apparently, my instructions, when translated into Tagalog, became crotchless underwear for the ladies (including my sister who we all know only wears huge off-white pants), and a selection of these for the men… and for the children! ARGH!! What now, now?? So instead of nice thank yous, I got repeatedly blasted, with each Skype sesh! Well ho bloody ho to you lot back in ole Blighty! As if the children had any idea what an Eva is!! Please, peeps. It has only just come out. Most adults don’t even know about it. (I certainly didn’t.) Cousin Clara the psychologist was the only person who didn’t completes lay into me. She said that my “gift-giving process was fascinating in a perverse way”. So, the best feedback I got was being called a pervert. Fab.

After the calls, I had no choice but to strongly reprimand the helper, and true to form, she immediately burst into tears. That A. Pissed me off, and secondly, made Milly start kicking Froo Froo. Mummy (oh SO empathic, aren’t you?!) grabbed Mills and the helper, and took them away to the upstairs back living room to do god knows what. Max didn’t notice any of it because he was totes immersed in Minecraft la-la land, and Don didn’t even look up from his Economist.

Now one would think, dear readers, that that would be sufficient ruination of my Chrimbo; that I had suffered sufficely from the slings and arrows of outrageous expat exmas fortune. Hells to the NO! Turns out that I had not!!

For the evening meal, I had gone to the major trouble in October of phoning Raffles Hotel to book a fabulous table for their buffet (incl. free-flowing Veuve Click), for Mummy, Don and I. It truly is a gorgeous-amundo setting, and it was supposed to be the perfect ending to our special family xmas.

That, it was not. Mummy was in a foul mood and hardly spoke. Until, that is, she was on her third glass of VC (after two G & T aperitifs), which is when all hell broke loose.

Raising her glass, she began to speak: “Well Emma-Jane, and you too, Don, I would like to say thank you so much for a truly delightful Christmas… For your wonderful generosity of spirit, and your warm hosting…”

“Oh Mum-ski”, I blushed prettily, like Kate Middleton, “There’s really no need to thank us…”

“No, what I was going to say is that I would like to thank you, but in actual fact, I am utterly appalled by the two of you. As if this trip wasn’t bad enough, Hilda has told me everything, and I’m absolutely disgusted!”

[WHAT?! Who the eff is Hilda??!]

Fighting through my shock at Mummy’s bizarre and totes unexpected outburst, I looked at Don to see what he was going to do to defend me. He stood up and went to the buffet.

“What on earth are you talking about, and who the bloody hell is HILDA??!”, I managed to say, after a quick touch-base with my higher power.

“Hilda, stupid girl, is your helper! She has a name, you know?!”

Oh! Hilda!! Right, that’s her name. Of course. Lololol!! In those moments I was terribly worried that Mummy had dementia too, that she had invented a mystical all-seeing being, and that I would have to get Don’s PA to find her a home too. Twice in one week! That would have been pushing it with the PA’s goodwill – even at this time of year.

“Yes, ok, I know who Hilda is. But I still have no clue what you’re on about, Mother. And I find it humungously ungrateful – even deeply abusive – that you would attack your daughter like this on Christmas Day!”, I told her, firmly but kindly.

“It’s just rude, Mummy. Rude!”, I added for good measure.

“Is it?? Is it really, Emma-Jane?”, she continued, insisting on using my full name just to be a big B.

“Hilda has told me about your drinking, that you’re drunk virtually every day and night, that you’re never home with the children, and that you SMOKE! Smoking, Emma-Jane?? Grow up!”

While I was putting my side of the story across, explaining that it’s terribly stressful being a trailing spouse and expat mother, constantly straining to adapt, she had the nerve to keep spewing.

“You are a terrible mother! Milly has serious anger issues, Max is addicted to Minecraft, and Don!! Do you even know what your husband is up to, while you’re swanning about?!”

By this point, I had been rendered speechless, for possibly the first time in my 38 years on this planet. I think even my hair had de-pouffed.

“I’ll tell you what Hilda said, shall I? Not only does Don have a drawer full of un-mentionables, but he is involved with another woman, at least one other woman. Where do you think he disappeared off to today? The cigar club wasn’t even open!!”, she hissed at me.

“Did you know that, Emma-Jane?? Did you? So, you are a terrible mother and a failed wife. Thank goodness you have your career to fall back on… Oh, no, wait a minute, you have no career either!! Look at yourself! On the brink of 40, and this is all you have to show? Very little, Emma-Jane. Very, very little.”

At last the tirade came to a close. I stared into space, as sweetly as I could, given the trying circumstances.

Don came back from the buffet.

“More champas, Glammy Gammy?”, he asked.

“Yes”, replied Mummy with a smile, “Yes, I think I will. Why not? It is Christmas, after all.”

“Cheers!”, Mummy said, once the champagne had been poured.

“So Don, my darling, Emma-Jane and I have been having a little chat in your absence, and we’ve come to the realisation that I’ve been away too long, and the rest of the family need me to go home. I won’t be coming with you to Boracay, very unfortunately, but I hope you have a lovely time. I’ll be leaving in the morning. I’ve decided to stay here at Raffles tonight, so as not to get under your feet for any longer than necessary. I’ll pop by tomorrow to say goodbye to Hilda and the children.”

“What a shame, Gammy!”, Don said, like he had just lost a few quid on the horses, “We’ll miss you awfully. But of course, needs must!”

Yes, I thought, in the cab back to Emerald Hill Road: needs bloody well must. Thank phewy that judgmental, insensitive, helper-loving woman won’t be joining us on our fabulous holiday in paradise. Branjelina and their brood stayed in the exacto same sea-view villa we’ll be in this time tomorrow, so you go home, Mother, and enjoy your lovely rainy New Years in suburban London. Needs must, sweetie Mum-ski. Whatevs.

So, merry flaming poop in a bag expat exmas, Expaterati peeps. May all your dreams come true.

My Expat Exmas Gift to You

Merry Chrimbo, dear readers!

I hope you’re having a lovely Christmas Day. I sort of am, despite a series of challenging circumstances.

I wanted to give you a gift, to say thank you for reading, so I’ve made you a token of my lurv, and you can check it out here.

<3 ya

EJ xx

Part Awesomeness, Part Mega-Notness

Today was a day of two halves. Half sugar, half lemon. In the morning, Mummy and I went for mani-pedis at the Forum, and massages at the Hyatt. The children are off school and in need of constant attention, so I just about managed to pry Mummy away from the helper. They went off to Universal Studios. Helpers love that place as much as the kids do.

While getting our nails done, we discussed my father’s shenanigans, and I gave her the skinny on the calls I’d had from Chantelle about his mysterious disappearance. She agreed that he must be up to his old tricks, but thought his alibi of meeting his Guildford school friends was a little odd. Even now, she credits him with using his brain to think! Totes unworthy of it, if you ask moi. She even said, get this, that she feels sorry for Chantelle, wasting her youth on an old man. Mum-ski!!!? So sweet, but so completes naive. The girl is basically on an annual salary she could never have earned off her own back (though evidently doing just fine on her back UGH disgusto), and given my father’s age, all she has to do is hang around long enough for her shares to vest. Golden handcuffs? Golden suspender belt, babeses, hahaha!! Vom.

Not only that, he’s supporting her 16-year-old daughter, Angel (it’s actually Angelica, people! And she’s no angel, I’m sure), including paying her private school fees. Angel was at a crappy public school until my father showed up with his white stallion and gold card, and Lordy only knows what those public schools are like in Australia. I’ve seen Summer Heights High. I know what the score is. (LUV Ja’mie!!! Can so relate!)

Mummy’s insistence on empathising with Ms Chantilly was starting to push me over the edge, to the point where the nail girl told me to make my toes to stop shaking. It megannoyed me because I know very well that almost no one is more empathic than I am, so when anyone pretends to be, I just think, “Shut UP! Don’t even try to go there or you’re ridic!!”

I didn’t want to say that, of course, because Mummy is so obvioso clueless about a truckload of relationship issues. I’m not going to be the one to burst her mahusiv bubble. Not my modus operandi, and most defo not good for my chi. I decided to let it go, make peace with the matter, and have a big chant about it later, over a few glasses of sauv blanc.

Then we met my fab local friend Audrey Lim for lunch. Mummy so wanted to meet some Singaporeans, and go to a traditional sort of place, off the beaten track. So we went to Dempsey. Jones the Grocer. Mummy looked a bit disappointed. Dunno why. What’s more traditional than that?!

Next, we cabbed it back to Orchard, to skip around the malls, and indulge in one of my favourite sports: Rrrrra-shun spotting. I thought I was good at it, but Audrey is AMAZEBOBS!! She can spot them from two miles away!!!

Mummy was a bit of a spoilsport though. She said she didn’t find it funny, that it was racist, and that she wanted to go home. Ex-cuuuse me?! Firstly, Bling isn’t a race, and B. I am the least racist person in the universe. My mother can be so insensitive and judgmental towards me. I really regretted not telling her to shut up earlier in the day.

So, I let her go home, and Audrey and I went off to the Loof bar for cocktails. She told me about this super cool dance marathon thingie she’s going to next month, and I’m totes thinking of going too. Dancing hotly is one of my greatest skills, and I just don’t do enough of it in public places.

When I got home, I was ready to hit the hay. The irritants were tucked up in their beds (so cute when they’re unconscious, that’s when I love them most ardently/ at all?), Don was at a work thing, and Mummy was eating nasty Philippino fish head soup with the help, both of them squawking away in Tagalog. I was just about to get in the bath when my phone rang. Ms Chantilly. She was super upset and sounded like she had a runny nose which made me feel sick to my stomach, and I nearly hung up. I was trying to steel myself against the nausea, while fumbling with the headphones to plug them in so that I could splash my face with cold water.

Then, as I prepared to click IPhone_calling_screen copy , I heard her saying, “ssptltifhhbjsur and the doctor said that your father has dementia”. What now, now???

I felt I was about to fall over, and edged towards the bed to make a graceful landing.

“What?”, I asked, “What did you just say??”

She repeated herself. Oh. Yes. Yes, that’s what I thought she said.

“Chantelle, I’ll have to call you back”, I said. Her distress and runny nose had impacted me in a big way, and I could totes feel myself rocketing* to Planet Panic: I can’t go to Australia! I’m too busy! I don’t know anything about dementia! It’s too ugly! I don’t have time for this! I can’t possibly HELP!!

For seven minutes, I did my pranayama breathing, in one nostril, out the other, but that didn’t help. I did the crow pose twice, and then a few tree poses, but that didn’t help either. As the panic started to rise, I ran, arms flailing, to the wine fridge, and downed two glasses of New Zealand’s finest. That helped. I knew then what I had to do.

I went to my meditation corner, bathed myself in white light, and spontaneously experienced a connection with my higher power. In that moment, these words appeared in my mind’s eye:

IMG_3601

I felt immediately better, so I called Ms Chantilly back. When she picked up, I could tell she was crying, and I knew I had to be kind, but firm.

“Where is he now, Chantelle?”, I asked, using my awesome skills from the half-day conflict negotiation training I once did. She sobbed (UGH UGH and UGH again, why must people cry at me all the time just to piss me off??) that he had been admitted as an inpatient for his own safety.

“Perfecto!”, I said, “Best place for him. I’ll get Don’s PA to find him a nice care home in Noosa, and he can go there as soon as he’s been discharged”.

I made some digital-effect blurpy- blurp robot sounds (my DJ experience really paid off there!), and said, “Sweetie, you’re breaking up”.

The last words I heard her say were, “But Emma-Jane…”.

But me no buts, baby. But me nooooo butts.

I really need to do a long treadie session tomorrow, espesh if I’m going to be on Fit For Fashion next year. I was looking at my behind in the mirror tonight during the panic yoga, and I think the Din Tai Fung dumplings might be taking their toll. It’s so tricky fitting in enough gym time, what with Mummy here : ( BUT, of course, it’s totes abso lovely to be surrounded by family at this beautiful time of year, and I am so super blessed.

* Check this awesome Kate Spade rocket clutch. Likee. Wantee.

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Singapore Expat Hottie Wins TV Show

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Last night I was watching this awesomeness show on Starworld that I’ve been following avidly from the treadmill every week. Starworld is the only channel I watch since finding out that it delivers “the best entertainment solution to trend setters and story seekers of Asia”. (Until I start vlogging, babeses!!!) When I read that, I thought, LOLs yeah whatevs peeps; but then I started watching it and OMG, it’s totes truesome!

The show is called Fit for Fashion, and the final had me on the edge of my seat. It was about a bunch of peeps around Asia getting their fit on over four months, and having their looks and attitudes transformed to become hotties, inside and out. And they so did that! The final three contestants, Kristina, Matty and Citira (the expat wife, yay us!!) were not only hotties by the end, but they were mega-athletic, like serioso hard-core! They had to do a race where they ran around and did super difficult stuff, turning a mahusiv tyre over and over again, and running across a rickety floating bridge, carrying buckets of water.

I thought Citira was a-goner when she fell off the bridge, but she kept going, telling herself: “Brush it off”, “Kick it into gear”, and “Like a ninja, like a ninja, like a ninja”. She would probably be almost as good at life coaching as I would, with catch phrases like that. I should get my peeps to call her peeps to discuss teaming up.

So, she made it to the final challenge, the catwalk at KL Fashion Week. “I’m gonna own that runway!”, she said, and she totes did. In her words, she looked “amazeballs” (she even talks a bit like me!! Luv ya, babes!).

Photo credit: Fitness First

Photo credit: Fitness First

I was so happy for her, and not at all jealous of her fabbo biceps, or the fact she got to hang out with Dame Zandra Rhodes. I’m her biggest fan. She’s my hairoine!! (Except her hair colour is clearly fake, whereas mine is more natural-looking.)

Photo credit: Fitness First

Photo credit: Fitness First

What was so mucho moving was when Citira said how far she has come, and that a year ago, she was a normal mum, and “it wasn’t about me anymore”. Tell me about it, expat sista! I feel your pain!!

She said she had lost her dreams and her self-esteem, but now she had “got it all back”. I could so relate! I’m defo going to be on Season Two next year. I could win that thing! I’d look “amazeballs” on the catwalk too!!

While I’m waiting to be asked to take part, I’m going to do the free Fitness First trial. So sweet of those nice gym peeps to do that. Maybe when the celebrity trainer and Fitness First big guy, Mitch Chilson, finds out about me, he’ll be my personal trainer. These people know how important it is to nurture new talent.

A Tale of Two Dogs?

I’ve had some requests recently from people who want to know more about the Froofster. I’m all about giving my adoring public what they want, babeses. People luv dog photos, right? Much hilariation.

So, here are a few pix of her.

This is her right before she peed on the chestnut Chesterfield:

This is her right after she peed on the chestnut Chesterfield:

This is her at the Tanjong Beach Club:

As you can see, she’s a lovely dog really. I have decided to send her on an assertiveness training course next year, so that she can find strategies for managing Milly’s behaviour towards her. Now that I have found a solution, I feel much more relaxed about the whole thing. Phewy : )

On another phewy note, you will recall, dear avid reader, that I ran into Will last Saturday in the lift at Marina Bay Sands. I just played it cool, taking group selfies of me and the hot mummies who came to Milly’s bday after-party. Once we got to the 57th floor, Will said, “EJ, could I speak to you for a second?”

So as not to look dodgy in front of the mummies, I replied loudly, “Yes, we do need to discuss your firm’s sponsorship of the next event for the Singapore International Women and Trailing Spouses’ Association”, and excused myself from the ladies.

We found a quietish table at Ku Dé Ta, and Will proceeded to tell me that he felt bad about blanking me the other night, and he hadn’t wanted to do that, but Michelle, his wifey, has turned a corner with her drinking and they’re working on their marriage. Sweet, I thought. That’s nice.

“So”, he said, standing up and holding out his hand to shake mine, “That’s it. Friends?”

I shook his hand, and gave him my pretty Kate Middleton smile, saying, “Oh abso totes! Friends!!”

Because of my high empathy quotient, I saw that it was really difficult for him to talk about our relationship. And anyway, nothing actually happened or ever would have. I was quite clear about that, right, dear readers? Yup.

So, I was a little taken abackski when, later that evening, I saw him deep in conversation with a woman I didn’t recognise. An Asian woman. Then I remembered that he has a much younger step-sister who is half Chinese, half American. She has probably come to stay with them for Christmas. It’s that time of year, right?

Mummy’s visit is going really well, despite her continued fraternisation with the help. I am looking forward to our trip to Boracay (Mummy’s coming too) because we are very much not bringing the helper – no need as the kids’ club at our hotel is world-renowned for never having to spend time with your kids – so that I can have some quality time with la Mammita.

Mummy’s Expat Visit

Well, it has been an idyllic few days, now that Mummy is with us, in the bosom of our happy little family. Except Friday, that is. Her first full day here, I was really terribly ill, so I had to stay in bed until dinner time. I totes don’t know what was wrong, but I was completes knocked for sixes. It can’t have been the sangria because nothing red ever disagrees with me due to the de facto fact that red things synergise with my hair. Perhaps it was a 12-hour mini-bout of the dreaded mycoplasma. I just don’t know.

My absence was no prob though. It turns out that Mummy, too, has a new BFF: our helper! Argh!! Embarrassando!!! I hope it won’t get out among the Singas Expaterati. (I can see from my WordPress stats that I have almost no readers in Singapore, so I’m sure it’ll be fine.)

Although Mummy visited us twice previously, it was when we had our old helper, Maria, so she hadn’t met the current one. Unfortunately, we had to let Maria go. The problem was that Milly’s first word was “Maria”. Lordy knows, I tried to overlook the matter, I really did. I thought for a long while that Milly had a speech impediment (inherited from Don, presumably), and that she was trying to say, “Mummy”, but it kept coming out as, “Maria”. Eventually it became clear that this was not at all the case. So Maria had to go. I didn’t tell the children (or Maria, until the cab had arrived to take her to the airport while Max and Mills were at school), and I immediately hired a replacement who met my requirements, including lactation. I can’t bear the sight of clinging, crying children. It super upsets me.

Anyhoo, back to the now.

For some reason, Mummy had reverse jetlag, and woke up on Friday morning full of beans, and raring to go. Once the children were packed off, Mummy asked the helper if she could give her a refresher tour of a few places: China Town, Arab Street, and Little India. They also did the fab boat ride from Robertson Quay down to the Merlion, and somehow managed to squeeze in lunch at… wait for it… a Philippine restaurant at Lucky Plaza!!! Utter weirdness, given how many fabulous eateries there are here. She hadn’t let on, but apparently my mother has been learning Tagalog in her extremely ample free time. What now, now?!!

So the disgraceful upshot is, she and the help are bezzie mates, which I find mega-inappropes, and I know you’ll agree with me, dear readers (comments always welcome, PLEASE I AM BEGGING YOU TO COMMENT. WHAT DO YOU WANT, BLOOD?!!). I only heard about all of this when I sashayed down the stairs in my negligée on Friday evening, to find the two of them and the children in fits of laughter, speaking Tagalog! Mummy started to reel off the details of their day, and I told the helper, in no uncertain terms, to get back to work, and put Max and Milly to bed immediately. Froo Froo dog looked as relieved as I felt, once the irritants had been spirited away to the upper floors. I couldn’t have all that loud laughing and speaking helper-lingo. The adjoining courtyards in shophouses create a noise vacume, and we have highly auspicious neighbours on both sides because that’s the type of person who lives in my area. What would they think??

I considered having a word with Mummy to explain that this new found friendship of hers is totes not on, but then she produced all the stuff I’d asked her to get me from Harvey Nix, and I remembered what a sweet and doting mummy she truly is. I suggested going out for a slap-upski dinner somewhere, my treat, but bless her, her reverse jetlag had re-reversed itself, and she said she needed to get her beauty sleep. And from what I saw, she really mega did.

We finished our lovely chat about everything she had brought for me – we bond so well over Alexander McQueen – and she tootled off to bed in our Shangrila guest room. I wasn’t tired though, and the mini-mycoplasma had miraculously cleared up. I checked Facebook and saw that CJ was at a bar on my street (he’s an avid FB poster, which I LUUUUV), so I popped on some slap and killer heels, and off I went for another night of the usuo awesome fun-ness. I knew I couldn’t be out too late because of Milly’s birthday party the next day, but I can totes hold my bevvies, so two bars and a pool party later I can honestly say that I was FINE when I got home at 4. About 4. It was probably 4.

Mills’ party in the kiddie area of the Marina Bay Sands casino was nothing short of the best Expaterati kiddie party everrrrr. All of my genius fantastico plans worked out exactly as strategised, and the glam mummies in attendance so obvioso knew that the bar has now been raised to FEEERGET IT, IT’S IMPOSS TO BEAT THIS, BABY!!!! It was written all over their faces. Who says that botulism prevents authentic expression?? I’m so intuitive and empathic though, perhaps only I could have picked it up. (If I become a celebrity instead of a life coach, will all my wisdom be wasted? Shame, as my beautiful mucho-loved South African moved to Canada friend would say. Mwa Mwa, luv ya!)

The party was amazebobs, and probably the best one of the decade past, as well as the decade to come. At 6 PM the children (and my mother) got shipped out in limos and SUVs, so that the mummies could have a proper chat about helpers, husbands, handbags, and holidays. I’d booked an after-party table at Ku Dé Ta, which, according to my sources, was supposed to be next to where David Becks was dining. The Beckster was nowhere to be seen, but who should I encounter in the lift up..? The doors swooshed open at the 33rd floor, and there stood Will.

I’m so exhausto now that I can barely type. I’ll have to get back to you about what happened Sat night. Plus Don just got home from his trip, so I’d better go be the wifey. You know what I’m saying, Expaterati ladeeees!!!!

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Bikini Party, Babeses!

Hotness

O
Em
GEE, peeps!
I had the MOST amazebobs Thursday, when I went to this seminaked competition at a totes coolio groovalicious clothes shop on Orchard Road. Guess who won, babeses… Yes, moi!!! YAY!!!!!!!!

99 other people also won, but given that there are 5.47 million bods in Singapore who are perfectly capable of wearing bikinis, I think I can safely say: NAILED IT!!!

Hells-ya, I did!!

It wasn’t that easy, actually. I had to get up at ridic o’clock to arrive by 7 AM (I’m only a five minute walk away, but I had to straighten and pouffe my hair.) I chatted to lovelies in the queue, made some new besties (super fun buff gay guys, and finally, more local friendsies!!), and suddenly it was time for the shop doors to open. Then we had to run round in our tinies, choosing clothes. The choosing bit was almost as tricky as getting up before 9 AM! Their clothes are so me, and I looked incrediblé hot in literally everything I tried on. Literally. Totes literalmenté.

New local gal pal

New local gal pal

Anyhoo, I eventually chose something fab, and fought my way through the paps clamouring for my attention (maybe I should become a celebrity instead of a child psychologist, writer, historian and life coach), to the exit. One of my new gay BFFs, CJ, was standing outside looking awesome, and he said, “Like, let’s grab some lunch, bitch!”, and I said, “Like, totes let’s, bitch!”

So, like, we did! And his besties came too. We went to PS Café Ann Siang Hill which is my new fave hangout. CJ is hilarious! I had the best time, just chatting, chilling, and drinking rosé and berries sangria. Then I checked my ludicrously expensive watch – I was just admiring how it glints so nicely in certain light, not looking at the time – and saw it was 6 PM. OOOPSY. I had told the help I’d be home by midday.

While I was having sucho mucho fun times, Mummy’s flight landed. I think around 9.30. Annoying timing, Mutha! I did tell her to change it because Singapore Air is never late, but she said she didn’t want to “go to all that bother”. (Selfish.)

It wasn’t a major inconvenience though because the helper got the bus to Changi, with a sweet sign the children made: “GLAMMY GAMMY” in big letters, so that Mummy would recognise her.

Once I realised how late it was, I gave my new GBFF lots of air kisses and dashed off home. I tried to think of a good excuse for my absence, but then I thought WHAT?? I’m not a kid anymore! Just because Mummy flew 5,000 miles to see me, it doesn’t mean I need to curtail my sosh activities from a prior engagement. Plus CJ knows TV people, so that’s my career we’re talking about.

Besides she’s really coming to see the kids, and they were home before I was, so no prob.

I walked into the house, expecting to find jet-lagged Mummy reclining on a chaise longue in the downstairs front living room, but instead I was greeted by the sound of raucous laughter from the upstairs rear living room. From Mummy, and, get this, the help!! What now, now?!

So, there was my mother with her G & T and chamomile tea chaser, Max playing Minecraft, and Mills asleep on the Froofster (who looked too traumatised to move), while the helper laughed uncontrollably at whatever stupid thing Mummy had just said. Thankfully, I was so overjoyed to see Mummy after such a long time that I was able to ignore the gigantic boundary transgression which was happening under my own roof. I thought she understood about not fraternising with the help!! She had thousands of staff in her expat days.

The helper disappeared as soon as I arrived, looking embarrassed, and off she went to wash the car and clean the shoes. Too right!

I had a lovely catch-up with Mummy, hearing about her aqua aerobics gang and her online scrabble shenanigans. Mega-LOLs. While we were trying to talk, Max and Milly kept interrupting, showing her their artwork and their Mandarin homework. Egotistical little irritants!!

I’m just happy that I’ve signed them up for an awesome speech and drama holiday camp during part of the break, so that they won’t completely monopolise Mummy’s limited time here. My Harvard friend who is some know-it-all about childhood development and stuff recommended it. She says it’s the best way for kids to learn, and this place is fab. Whatevs, sweets. If they’ll take the irrits off my hands for a few days, let’s do this thang, babeses.

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P.S. (not the café lol) As you know, I’m never one to blow my own trumpet. I just wanted to let you know that I made the national paper here. I’m a page three girl! Go me!!!

From yesterday's The New Paper : )

From yesterday’s The New Paper : )

More hotness

More hotness

EJ’s Expat Musings

As a blog aficionada, I am an avid follower of blogs. I follow 839 blogs, all of which I read regularly, and write fascinating, witty comments to make their content more interesting. You simply have to if you want more traffic to your own blog. No choice.

So, I came across one which made me feel a little sad. Copied it to share and explore with you, dear readers, but now cannot for the life of me remember which blog it’s from. Anyhoo.

It was written by an expat blogger in Singapore, and is about the tourists who come here, specifically the older peeps:

“I’ve seen these over-tanned couples here on vacation. Tons of them in their 60’s and 70’s. They sit in the bars and restaurants, with bags of shopping during the day, and wearing the shopping at night. They mumble to each other. They stare at each other and then look away. She catches him eyeing up a young woman who looks just like she did, not so long ago. It wasn’t so very long ago, was it? He notices her noticing him and moves his head, pretending he was just taking in the panoramic view around him, not at all entranced by the girl who his wife used to resemble. Not at all disappointed by the woman he now finds himself chained to for all of eternity.”

Now, apart from the crappola prose and inconsistent use of commas, I am v curious about what the blogger was getting at. Since reading it, I’m now seeing these couples everywhere I go (megannoying! like having Daft Punk’s Up All Night on a loop in my head!!), and have even been “panorama’d” myself. Gross!! It’s like being checked out by your much older brother!!

I can understand it though, partly because I’m so hot, but also because, as hard as these older ladies try (boob jobs, Botox, hairdos, facial waxing), they just ain’t got it. Soz senior sistas, but no, just NO!

So, I feel rather sorry for these chaps, and I feel like the blogger is exploiting their misery to generate content. Which is really low.

This situation will never happen to Don and me. I don’t age like most women do, thanks to my punishing self-maintenance schedule and the chanting. So girlies, get chanting before it’s too late!

That said, I had to skip meditation today, and also had no time to chant because I was so busy. Ages ago I asked the helper to do the xmas shopping on Amazon (tax schmax!) for the folks back home, and then discovered this morning that she hasn’t done it because she wasn’t sure what to order! What now, now? What do these people do normally, to not know what gifts to buy?? So, after she had stopped crying and regained some composure (I hate how she does that crying thing just to piss me off), I told her she should get fun stuff for the kids and the men, toys and gadgets, and pretties for the women. Easy!! How hard was that? Where’s your initiative, helper woman?

What she fails to understand is that I am so swamped preparing for Mummy’s arrival tomorrow, and Milly’s bday party on Saturday. She doesn’t seem to realise that I am constantly on the go, and that just because I am lying on the sofa staring into space, I am nonetheless engaged in vital reflective processes.

Maybe I need to get a second helper.

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Quick shout-out to my girlies back home: Happy Birthdays, Rina and Debs!!! When are you coming to Singas to parté avec moi?! LOVE YA. Mwa-mwa.

Hanging With My Expaterati Crew on an Average Sunday Avo

Considering that weekends are the worst time of the week for an expat wifey, this one hasn’t been too shabby.

I got a good chunk of time at the gym and by the pool yesterday, because Don took our spoilt little people to see Penguins of Madagascar at the Platinum Suites. Unfortunately, he forgot to take jumpers for them, to counter the fierce A/C, so even with the duvets, Milly got frostbite in one of her toes (which has curtailed her kicking of Froo Froo dog, so it’s not all bad), and Max came home with a nasty runny nose. UGH. I cannot stand snotty children. That was one of my reasons for wanting to exchange London for Singapore’s climate: so many snotsville children. Crouch End is positively awash with kiddie nose juice.

One problem with this climate though is the sweating. I don’t do it myself, of course, but lots of people do, most notably FMAWG*. Their petite Asian girlies don’t seem to mind, which is v odd because:

1. They don’t sweat themselves. Even in my Bikram class (that’s hot yoga, to my dear non-yogi readers).
2. Asian blokies also don’t do it.

So, I am serioso at a loss because why would you want to cross over to the FMAWG team, when your own team doesn’t do the disgusting sweating? Wait. Oh yes, silly me… KA-CHING!!! Haha, what was I thinking : )?!

Anyhoo, so in the evening we left Max and Mills with the help, dashing quickly out the door amidst sounds of hysterical crying from Milly about her toe, and sneezing from Max. Crikey-O-Riley, it was good to get out!! We went to Din Tai Fung for dinner – my current fave food go-to. I think I’m addicted to dumplings!! I can’t get enough of them (hence the extra gym time, babeses). I might need to spend a week or two at a detox farm in the Philippines next year, to de-dumpling myself!

In the last two weeks, I’ve been to every branch on the island at least once. I was a bit bummed at the Sentosa one though. They charge for water! Bit of a low blow, given that Singapore has such amazebobs tap water.

Then yesterday after Max’s golf and Milly’s ballet (golly, it was an uphill struggle forcing her into her point shoes with that frostbitten toe!), we went to the Tanjong Beach Club with our Expaterati Crew. Every expat should have a crew to hang out with, preferably several different ones, but one really solid one will do. We rocked up early enough for the family slot, and then when the pool closed to kids (3PM), our respective helpers arrived in cabs to schlep the irritants back home. We don’t always ask the help to work on Sundays, but this was an exception and she was handsomely rewarded, so she was more than happy to forfeit her day off. Thank phewy, as well, because after swimming for hours, Max’s cold was even worse. More snot!

Once they were gone, we hot mammas changed into our raunchiest cut-up swimsuits lah, switched from diet coke to margaritas, and got our Ibiza on!! Ya, baby! That’s how we roll at the T Beach Clurb on an otherwise average Sunday avo! Suck that up, rainy Londrés!!

Don left to get ready for his trip tomoz, and Liz had to go too because she ate some dodgy pepper crab last night, but otherwise the crew was out in full force (except Michelle and Will… WTF is up with them?). Take that, you volleyball-playing twenty-something posers! What we lack in skin tone, we make up for with our vast experience of long term hotness, and our amazebobs dance moves. You can’t get those 90’s moves vicariously. You had to be there!!

The more margaritas I had, the better I looked, and my groove got more and more smokin’.

So, I got home around 11 tonight, and opened a Veuve Click for a bit of a catch-up on Facebook. I can do that kinda thing because I’m off-duty tomorrow morning. Nothing until pilates and a late lunch date. One of my girlies had posted this super coolio thing that’s happening this week:

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I’m totes thinking I should go, having looked so great today. I could win that thing, right??

 

 

 

* FMAWG: Fat Middle-Aged White Guys (but my discussion on this topic includes the non-fat ones too)

Expat Kid Bday Party

It’s Milly-Moo’s fourth birthday party next weekend. Her actual birthday is the week after, but I needed to schedule the party for a weekend when Don’s away, so that he feels guilty about missing it. I am having to work mega-hard to make it the best party in her class, and there have been a few tough acts to follow already this school year.

Because we don’t live in a condo and the Port of Lost Wonder is booked solid, the pool party option is out. So, I decided to hire the kiddie section of the casino at Marina Bay Sands. There’s no actual gambling, of course. They use sweets instead of chips. Adorablé, right?! There’s also a dance floor with VIP area, and for the $20,000 hire fee, they throw in the DJ, which is nice. I was thinking of doing it myself, to practice my mixing, scratching and mash-up skills, but then I realised I would be too busy looking hot.

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Marina Bay Sands Casino

I’m getting a pink limo to pick up Mills, me, and some of her little besties, with their mummies. Cocktail attire, natch. No shorts and flip-flops at MBS, sweetie! (Please would someone tell David Beckham that!! Save him from himself!)

Food-wise, it’s sushi (healthy AND Asian; my genius idea of course!), 100 Krispy Kreme donuts, and one of those totes trendy cakes made entirely out of fruit. All the Expaterati kids’ parties have them, so you just sorta hafta. And what happens is hilarious! The kids get so excited when they see the colourful cake, and then they realise it’s all fruit, and their little hearts break right there on the spot! Haha!! I can’t wait for that bit. It’s the highlight of most birthday bashes I’ve been to with Max and Mills.

For the bevs, I’m doing mocktails: alcohol-free Singapore Slings and Piña Coladas. I’m also getting a few cases of Mini-Me Möet. It looks just like the real thing, but contains no booze. I think it’s so clever of these drinks companies to start embedding the drinking norms of our society as early as possible.

I am still working on the activities and games, probably including a piñata and pass the parcel, with samples of beauty products inside. I’ve been speaking to Mac and Stila about sponsoring the event. We’re haggling over the finer details because I want them to provide a make-up artist for the little girls free with the sponsorship package, but I also want waxing and ear-piercing thrown in and they’re just not responding well to that request.

Anyway, it is all in hand, and thankfully the gift is sorted. I got her a three-foot tall Expat Girl Doll. So cute! She has a little LV suitcase (I chose that over the North Face backpack option), gorgeous mini-Prada shoes (I chose those over the Doc Martins), and no sense of identity whatsoever on her sweet perma-grin face. She talks too! In four different languages, she says, “I love you”, “Where’s the airport?”, and “Bali again?!” LUV IT!

Lastly, but in no way leastestly, Mummy arrives next week, in time for Milly’s party. I haven’t seen her since August, so it’ll be fabbo to hear all the goss from her aqua aerobics group and her online scrabble crowd. She’s terrif. The kids are so looking forward to seeing “Gam-ma”, (or Glammy Gammy, as Don calls her). I’ll have to fill her in on the situation with my father and that woman.

What Happens When You Accidentally Search “Looking for some fun” on Craigslist

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Due to the Froofster’s incontinence, I have had to get rid of the upstairs chestnut Chesterfield. So, after my 1:1 Pilates session this morning, I went onto Craigslist to look for a replacement sofa. Have to tighten the belt a tad because we’re having a Four Seasons xmas. Wrap-around childcare for two weeks ain’t cheap, you know?! Also, Milly’s birthday is on the horizon and these parties cost a small fortune.

Instead of inputting “looking for a sofa” on the Craigslist search, autocorrect changed my search terms to “looking for some fun”. Argh!! Dear readers, you would not believe the stuff that came up.

Wife’s away tonight, anyone wanna play?

Couples, plus single women, 18-45), party this Saturday. Msg for deets.

Swingers! In Singapore?! And this is from within the Expaterati! Mega-shock, babeses!!

The weirdest thing was this one:

The hottest party on the Singapore expat swinging scene. Join Liz and Don for their notorious monthly warm wild time. Unmarried couples (not married to each other) and single women only please.

What a coincidence that there’s a filthy couple here with those names! I must tell Don. He’ll totes die of embarrassment when he hears about what his namesake is getting up to. ROFL!

In other news, Chantelle my “step-mother” (ugh) Whatsapped me to say my father turned up. For a minute I had no clue what she was on about! Ha, I had totes forgotten that late night call.

Chantelle told me that the police brought him home around lunchtime on Sunday. Apparently, he said he had gone out to meet his school friend from Guildford. A bit weird because he hasn’t been anywhere near Guildford in probably 30 years. The last time he was there was for an old boys thing, as far as I know. He is up to his little tricks again, no doubto. Bloody stupid alibi, if you ask me. He must be losing his lothario touch.

One of the things that is so awkz and challenging about being an expat is the distance from one’s family. It is extremo annoyando to get these calls and messages from the folks back home, when clearly we’re not interested. Why oh why must they insist on interrupting our fun lives when we are thousands of miles away?? Hello! Why do you think we moved thousands of miles away in the first place?!

On a happier note, the bougainvillea is really looking fabulous today. Such a shame that it’s not visible from the street. I truly have the finest bush on Emerald Hill Road. Well done me! : ) xx

Another Smart Move, Singapore!

I didn’t get much out of Liz on Friday night, but what she did say is that maybe I should learn more about history and politics and stuff, particularly about Singapore. While she, Don and Will (what’s up with him, readers?? Gimme a bone, here!) were bantering, they were going on about some story in the Economist this week. To get involved in the banter, and not just be the silly ignorant wife – because that is so not me – I made a hilario (but totes true) jokee that I never find the time to read the Economist because I have to stay abreast of the goings-on on the Singapore Expat Wives Facebook group, the REAL Singapore Expat Wives Facebook group, the Nice Singapore Expat Wives Facebook group, and seven other groups. That’s a lot of reading! Super time-consuming, but it has to be done or you become a big expat nobody. You fall out of the Expaterati, and once you’re out, it’s mega-tough to bob back up again.

So, I thought it was totes sweet of Liz to show her concern for my intellect and my career as a writer by saying that I might benefit from broadening my reading horizons. She would be a good mentor, I feel. She must be somewhat into her 40’s, so she’s old enough for a mentoring situation to arise. I should get her to come out with me for a ladies’ night one Wednesday, and further seek her counsel. Maybe the one at the W in Sentosa. That’s meant to be aweso-funski.

She asked me how much I really know about Singapore, and I said quite a lot because I spend most of my time on Orchard Road. I am thus therefore well up on the ins and outs. I know all of the malls like the back of my hand. If a new shop is about to open, I am among the first to know. Which makes me v much In the Know. But you know that already, dear readers : ) XOX

Then she started talking about an interesting piece of local history, which I thought was another v smart move by Singapore. Apparently, there was this thing that happened here called NEWater. Singapore used to rely on Malaysia for its supply of clean water. But those naughty Malaysians went power-mad, and upped the price of the water. So, Singas did something super clever. They decided to grow their own water, and by the late 90’s, early noughties, they had made fabulous desalination and stuff plants, and now they have the cleanest water in the world. Amaze-bobs, right?

The coolest thing though is that now they sell their NEWater to Malaysia!! Haha, coolio or what?? Luv it! Go, Xīnjiāpō!!!

So, I thought yeah, that is an interesting story, Liz babes. And I totes want to hear more about Singapore. I could become like a renowned local expat political historian or something, if I have time. I’ll defo see what other bits and pieces I can find out from Liz over a few glasses of Veuve Clicky at the W.

After she told that story, emasculated Zachy-boy pipes up (he’s the trailing spouse in his marriage – what now, now?!), and starts talking about his Big Theory. I spose that, as the stay-at-home spouse, who obviously doesn’t spend much (any??) of his time at the gym, he has plenty of opportunities to come up with big theories. Ha! I’ve said “grow a pair” before, but I’ll say it again for good measure.

So, Zach obviously has a chip on his shoulder about Facebook. He used to work for them or whatevs, pre-emasculation. He went on about this guy, Jaron Lanier, who is some techy bore. Yawnicus, Zach honeee.

Then he said that he has a theory about Facebook and privacy, which he thinks is metaphorically similar to Singapore’s NEWater. Zach reckons (get this, LOL) that FB, and thusly all of the apps it owns, has a plan to slowly, but surely reduce its users’ privacy. And that because we all totes luv FB – which we totes do!! <3 it greatly, babeses, right? HELLS TO THE YES! – we’ll just agree to a creeping loss of privacy, handing over our data, and photos of our hols and kids. Well, um ya! Duh, Zach, how else am I going to show my 1,328 Facebook friends how much fun I’m having, and what a great parent I am? I’m not going to email each and every one of them, now am I?? That would take forevs, and anyway, we all know that email isn’t secure.

His Big Theory is that once we’re all thoroughly hooked on FB (which I so am not, and could come off it at any moment if I so desired which I totes do not for the afore-mentioned reasonings), they will introduce premium features we have to pay for, to buy our privacy back.

So, he reckons that, like Malaysia buying water off Singas, we will have to buy back the rights to our own privacy. Not just that, he thinks that in the not too distant future, only the wealthy will have any privacy at all because they (we, LOLs, mega-mahusiv-sorries to expats who aren’t on packages, cashing in from properties back home, violin time!) are the only ones who will be able to afford it.

Then he showed his true Commie colours, and waffled away about “the disease of inequality”, saying that less well-off people are just going to accept that they have, and therefore deserve, no privacy. “It’ll become a default response”, according to Mr Grow a Pair.

I’m sorry, but what a load of old bleeping bleep!! Zach, sweets, get a job!! Women are clearly more suited to the trailing spouse role, and it is obviously melting his mind into a paranoid puddle of delusion.

Ugh, it was all abso exhausting! I’m still so tired today. After writing this, I’d love to go back to bed, but it’s Sunday, Bloody Sunday. Helper’s Day off. I know now how U2 must have felt.

I was up with Max at crazy o’clock last night because he had a nightmare about all the villagers he had ever killed in Minecraft coming to get him. Cousin Clara, the Tavistock psychologist has advised me that, in those late-night situations, I should listen to Max’s concerns, try not to blame or belittle him for his fears, and stay with him until he is settled. She is clueless though about the kind of stresses and strains I am under, particularly the situation with Will, so I was defo in the right when I told Max to stop being so stupid and bloody well go back to sleep.

THEN – and you will sympathise no doubt, dear readers – I had just managed to block out the sound of Max crying and go back to sleep, and my phone rang!! What now, now!? Seriously, what fresh hell is this again?

It was that woman, Chantelle, my father’s ridic new child bride! She sounded frantic, saying that he had “disappeared”, and that, although it had happened before, he had always turned up.

“I’m so sorry, Emma-Jane, I didn’t know who else to call”, she said, “I really don’t know what to do. He has been gone for hours.”

Hmmmm, I thought, a taste of your own disgusto medicine at last. Not wanting her nastiness to affect my chi, I attempted to sound as give-a-crap as possible, while mainly wanting to go back to sleep. I suggested she phone the Noosa police chappies and see what they have to say about a missing person. Knowing what he did to Mummy, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if he is off somewhere “golfing” with some other chickadee. And that would show you, Missy Chantilly. What comes around goes around, sweets.

So, I was up twice in the night, once with Max, and once with my “step mother” (ugh), and frankly, I am <3′ing this whole expat thing a little less this morning. 

I’ll take Milly to Petit Bateau at the Paragon, to get her some sweet dresses. Shopping is an evidence-based cure for all ills. Plus it would look good for me to spend some time with her, and get some nice mother-daughter selfies for FB. Not least because of all this business with kicking Froo Froo dog. Poor Froosfster. I do feel for her, despite the peeing on the chestnut Chesterfield. She didn’t choose to relocate.

My Worst Night EVERRR as an Expat

Hmmmm, well dinner at Luke’s was most defo not a lovely evening. (Other than the food, of course, which was fabbo as always.)

A number of not good things happened, ranging across a spectrum of mega-odd to mega-crap.

Will did not try to sit opposite me, nor did he speak to me at all, or make eye contact at any point. He even talked about Mrs Expat Singapore with Don, and when I tried to join in with the boys’ banter, Will cut across my words and acted as if I was invisible. What now, now??

Then he finally did dart me a look, as he told Don about “some woman making a fool of herself, objecting to the commodification of expat women, taking her top and everything!!”.

That was the only time he looked at me all night.

Don laughed hysterically, like Will was the funniest person on earth. A-hole. He can be so sycophantic towards Americans. Why do people do that??

So that wasn’t nice at all. I decided that Will must have gone mad or something, and that, for the sake of my chi, I should concentrate on advancing my writing career with Liz, and my book on male trailing spouses.

Every time I started talking to Liz though (I didn’t manage to sit next to her, she was diagonally opposite, facing Don), she was laughing away with the boys’ banter, or staring into space, with a totes smug smile on her face, like the cat who’d got the cream. It was so strange that I remarked on it quietly to Don. He was struck by it also. So struck that his foot stomped down on the floor as he agreed that Liz’s expression was indeed v odd.

It got worse though, dear readers. As it turned out, Sarah, the pant-wearing wife was “Betty”, Mrs Competitive. I thought her name rang a bell. So there I was, sandwiched between drunk Michelle (full of anger about coming second at Mrs Expat Singapore), Sarah, who wanted to tell me repeatedly how much more of an Expaterati Somebody she is than everyone else, and her heart-stoppingly boring husband, Zach. For most of the night I ended up pushing macaroni cheese around my plate (no you carbs! still just NO!!,) and listening to Zach woffle on about how lovely it is being a stay-at-home dad, and how Facebook is stealing our privacy so that it can sell it back to us, and some whatnot whatevs about an app he’s working on in his spare time. Sweetie, I felt like telling him, you’re a kept man!!! It’s all spare time!! Grow a pair.

All in all, I can safely say that it was the worst night I have ever had since becoming an expat. Ever ever ever.

Ugh! Helper’s Menstrual Calendar Has Synced With Mine

Please don’t ask me how I know this, but the helper’s menstrual calendar has synced with mine. That whole syncing thing women do is, frankly, disgustingly primitive, and I would prefer to have no part in it. IMHO, it harks back to a time when men had their harems, and raced around simultaneously impregnating every woman in the vicinity. I am thankful that today we women have found ways of curbing this sort of revolting behaviour, using threats of financial ruin and custody battles over the children. In the current economic climate, men just don’t have the resources to call bluff on those threats. Except maybe in the Middle East and Utah.

The thing about men is that they just cannot help themselves. I know it’s a cliché, but clichés are true. That’s why they’re called clichés. As wives, we have a responsibility to protect them from their baser instincts. That said, if they’re too base to be saved, we must not bend over backwards or sacrifice our self-respect to stop them messing around.

If they’re surrounded by bitches in heat though, it’s not really their fault. There’s only so much we can do. Ultimately, Ladies, if you married a scumbag, then I’m afraid that is what you signed up for. Sorreeee!! Reality munches.

What with my whole menstrualness I can’t get my writing juices flowing today, so I think that’s all for now. I spose even Tina Fey and Sheryl Sandberg have their downer days.

Actually, one more effluvia-related topic. Froo Froo Dog’s anxiety about Milly asserting herself (kicking Froo Froo Dog) has now gone beyond muttering, to incontinence. Ugh. She has completely ruined the upstairs chestnut Chesterfield : ( That was a wedding present, you foul hound!

(Still no response from Will… Well, we’ll see what he has to say for himself at dinner on Friday.)

Be-Will-Dered

Today am feeling flummoxed and bewildo’d. Be-Will-dered, in fact, lol. But no, not lol, because I am not laughing. After our amazebobs evening, which may or may not have been a dream, I messaged Will to say thanks for his support, and for a lovely night. Now I know he is sometimes busy, but he is v responsive with his phone, so I think it’s a bit odd that I haven’t heard back from him. It has been three days argh. I hope there hasn’t been some sort of problem with him getting home so late afterwards : (

Or maybe I really did dream the whole thing..? If so, it was a v vivid dream. This doesn’t usually happen to me.

If it did happen, he probably didn’t get home much before 5 AM, and that’s not a good look for a married man. Then again, Michelle was no doubt unconscious, in a booze-soaked oblivion following her success at Mrs Expat Singapore. I saw on the event website that she came second!! Ha! Pipped to the post by a younger woman. A divorced younger woman, at that, so I don’t know how she was even allowed to take part. Not really a Mrs, pageant people! Argh, how embarrassing for Michelle. Beaten by a divorcee… Thank goodness it was beneath me to take part. If I had won, with Michelle as runner-up, I am not sure our friendship could have survived the brutal truth.

As it is, I feel we may be on shaky ground. Not because of anything I’ve done, but because I know now what a nasty person she is. Deep down, behind all that outward Angelina loveliness. I’m just not sure we can stay friends. I totes know too much! It’s a real worry because later this week we’re all going for dinner at Luke’s (YUM!).

Liz organised the night out, and although I don’t much want to hang with Michelle, I do want to go so that I can show Liz my impressive authorship portfolio. She must have a lot of contacts from her days in publishing, and I’m sure she would find my writing stimulating; full of exciting possibilities for my future media career.

Don is around this week, so we’re both going. Will and Michelle are going, I can see from the FB event attendance list. Liz is bringing her husband, Matt. Then there’s another couple I haven’t met. Sarah, I think her name is, and her husband. I don’t know much about them, but from what I hear, she wears the pants and he’s the trailing spouse. So, that will be interesting! I never really meet those types of couples. I seriously wonder how that affects his manliness. Is he active on the mums and tots scene?? Mega-LOLs. What a sight that would be. If he’s a bit of a hottie, does that mean all the mums are drooling into their bubbas’ muzzies, and neglecting the little ones while they fawn all over him and his weird new-age metrosexiness? Hahaha! Luv it!! Can’t wait to meet that couple.

Upon reflection, it would be a great project for me to write a medley of interviews of these men. I feel certain that the world would like to understand how they can possibly agree to that lifestyle. I, for one, have zero clue why they would, so I am the chica perfecta to communicate it to the Global Expaterati. And beyond.

What I’ll do at Luke’s is position myself between Liz and this non-pants-wearing chap, and lob metaphorical idea balls back and forth. I’ll be both Hermes and Zeus, extracting the data from him, and delivering it to her, filtered through my spontaneous creative processating abilities.

I am not sure where I would like Will to sit. Opposite would be intriguing, but I don’t think I could keep a straight face if there was a repeat of the footsie night. So, much as he will probably try to sit opposite me, I plan to avoid that.

Between talking to Liz and non-pants guy, hopefully it will just be a lovely agenda-free evening of bloody steak and nice expat chat.

(Hmmmmm, where is he??)

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Wait-a-minute! Not All Expats are A-Holes!!

This weekend, while I have been quite caught up in my feminist mission (which may or may not have been a dream – argh!), a dreadful thing has befallen the Singapore Expaterati.

A v nasty person stole screenshots from a closed Facebook group of expat wives here, in order to stir up anti-foreigner feeling among the local population. Chaps, this is totes not on!!

I’m not going to go into the original post, suffice it to say that it concerned a woman in labour waiting in a taxi queue, with no one allowing her to queue-jump. At no point did anyone check the passports of those in the queue to determine whether or not they were Singaporean, but an unfortunate inference came about that they were.

So what ensued was a discussion of how selfish or otherwise all Singaporeans are. The majority of the comments totes did not condemn our hosts, and many said the woman ought to have called an ambulance.

What the v nasty person did though, was take screenshots of the most extremo comments, the ones that said Singaporeans are racists. They then posed as an expat, “Sarah Jones” (lolol, who really has a name like that? you might as well claim to be Jane Austen or Bridget Jones! so ridic!!), and posted the shots on a site that is popular with a certain demographic of Singaporeans.

Now.

Ok.

I am all about freedom of expression (hence my feminist mission), but this seems to me a breach of trust and of privacy. Even in a group with over 10,000 members, surely there is a level of agreed sanctitification!! Am I right?? I mean, if something can leak from a group like that, does that mean the Internet has no safe space for people to speak their minds?

Well, if that’s the case then I want no part in this Internet thing anymore!! It’s just mui sinistré, mi amigos. Except for my blog, Facebook, and my meagre Twitter presence, mainly so that I can open a communication channel with V Becks. And Pinterest (I love that!). And StumbleUpon (so many funny things about cats and babies haha!!). And The Old Reader (which I don’t really get, but it’s for people on the cutting edge and that’s so mega-moi). Everything else though, I am done with you, Internet!

So what I want to say here is that although some expats are totes mega a-holes, the majority really are not. Most of us just love living here, muddling along with everyone in an environment of acceptance, and we’re serioso not trying to exploit the economy or pull a fast one. Serio, Singaporeo babeses!!

I even have a proper real Singaporean friend who agrees with me!

I told Clara about the Facebook furore, and she said that it’s “a common phenomenon for outsiders to club together and criticise the host country so as to feel a sense of bonding and belonging”. She said it happens in every expat community the world over, but in mature communities like Singapore and Hong Kong, “the process and the backlash tend to be more venomous”. She said it was to do with the British Empire and stuff about colonisation.

Hmmmmm. Well, Clara, I would agree with you, but for the fact that you have abso no idea what you’re talking about. I for one never criticise my host country and I totes <3 Singapore. The people are great, the shopping is great, the weather is great, there are loads of great restaurants, and David Beckham has bought a house on Sentosa. So it must be great! Mwa-mwa luv ya Xīnjiāpō!! Xx

Me & Malcolm X – We Both Had a Dream (I think)

Ohmygoodness, what an exciting and meaningful evening it was on Friday! True to my word, I organised a passionate feminist mission to address the Mrs Expat Singapore beauty pageant.

Will gave me a hand and was abso amazo. When we met up last week (nothing happened! just a v nice evening between friends, dear readers), he told me that his wife, Michelle, was a participant (LOLOL, she kept that one quiet!!), so he needed to wear a disguise.

Enlisting the help of Max and Milly, I produced some powerful placards – just like the suffragettes in whose footsteps I am honoured to tread – and together with Will, we made a spectacle of ourselves. We definitely put my point across!

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 We arrived at the venue entrance at 6.30 for the beginning of the event. Will disappeared suddenly, but I marched up and down with my placard as people arrived. I got moved along, to a point farther away from the entrance, but I continued to march.

Next thing I noticed was that Doom and Gloom Expat Wifey had turned up, also with a placard! What now, now?? She attempted to march alongside me, but, not wanting to be associated with her dullness, I zigzagged my way around her path, doubling back on myself where necessary.

Once everyone was inside, Will came back, still wearing his excellent disguise. He explained that he had needed to take an important work call. His dedication to his work is impressive. It reminds me of how I was, when I had a job.

Still avoiding Mrs D & G, Will and I continued to make a statement, loud and clear.

Then an official-looking chap came over and said, “Sorry, but if you persist in this behaviour, you may be fined or even arrested.”

I thought, hell no, this is far less than the suffragettes had to contend with, so while Will stalled him, I started quietly singing We Shall Not Be Moved. Fumbling through my (Chloë) bag for the roll of duct tape I’d brought along, I proceeded to tape myself to the railings of the nearest taxi stand. Once I was properly covered in tape, I let my song grow louder until I was shouting at the top of my voice.

Next, unfortunately, the official chap called for back-up, and within 30 seconds a bunch of coppas had arrived. Argh!! But I thought, if I’m going down then I’m going down in flames! So I took my top off to reveal what I had written earlier across my boobs and tum with permanent marker: SAY NO TO THE OBJECTIFICATION OF EXPAT WOMEN. Will had gone again because, as he later explained, he had another v important call.

So there I was, naked from the waist up, surrounded by coppas, and the doom and gloom expat wife woman. The oldest one told me off like I was a naughty schoolgirl, while the younger ones cut the tape, and D & G woman wrapped her beige pashmina around me. I struggled during the wrapping – get that effing bla colour off me, bitch! – but she must do more press-ups than me because she forced that thing around me until I was on the verge of suffocation.

Then Will turned up, cool as a cucumber, bless him, and while the oldest coppa was reading me my rights, he opened his wallet and started to peel off $100 notes.

“So what’s the fine, Sir?”, Will asked the coppa.

“$1,500 if she stops now, but you cannot pay in cash. Fill out this form with your payment details. I will need to see your IC”, came the reply.

So, Will gave the charming coppa what he asked for, and filled out the form. Which was sweet, I thought. I put my top back on, batting away D & G woman’s nightmarish pashmina, and asking her to please cease and desist with her interferment of my mission.

Once we were free to go, I felt totes elated with the stand we had taken. So when Will suggested a visit to the casino, I was IN!! I love a bit of roulette. I didn’t particularly want Mrs D & G to tag along, but, annoyingly, she did. Will said, “the more, the merrier”. Hmmmmmm. (Doesn’t he realise how dullsville this woman is??)

Even more annoyingly, she kept winning! Thankfully, after a few wins she cashed out, and said she had to get home. Ok then, G’BYE sweets!!

Will and I went up to the terrace at Sky on 57. He was really interested in hearing more about my blogging experiences, so I shared those with him. Nice because Don is really not interested at all, and Will was v sympathetic about that. He told me a bit more about his marriage and how awful it is. Poor guy : ( Michelle sounds like a truly awful person to have to live with, and parent with, in the long-term, as gorgeous as she is. (Seriously, she looks like Angelina, and I’m not kidding.)

When he put his arm around me, it wasn’t like he was making a pass at me. Not at all. It felt more like we had been through an intense shared experience tonight, battling together on behalf of womankind. And when he put his hand on my thigh, that was just what he felt like doing in the moment, overwhelmed perhaps by my great beauty and feminine energy. So when he kissed me, it didn’t feel out of the ordinary. I am v attractive, so I totes understand. My hair was also looking awesomeness.

All in all, a hugely successful night. I got my point across, and Will learned a lot about WordPress.

THEN, dear readers, the weirdest thing ever happened! I woke up and it seems like maybe I dreamt the whole thing!! Argh! What was super-bizarro though was that there was a fake beard duct taped between my legs. How’d that get there??