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.

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Expat Friendses & Not So Much Friendses

I got back to Singapore today, with two cases full of fabulous London fashion, hot off the racks. Ok so I was somewhat stung on import tax, but as long as I don’t tell Don, it basically didn’t happen. Am I right, Ladeez? Yes, I am right.

It was lovely to see Max, Mills, and Don after my week away, but even lovelier to wave them off to their respective daytime occupations, and then slink elegantly back to bed. Jet lag can be such a killer. It could take me days to return to a normal sleeping routine – possibly even weeks! I have only my lucky stars to thank that I felt sufficiently together to rise in time for a high tea with my Expaterati girlies.

What I did not expect about said tea was that both Liz and Michelle were there. But you betrayed us and got a job, Michelle ma belle, so what the hell are you doing at a high tea?! You don’t even drink Veuve Click anymore, babes, due to the whole being a “recovering” alcoholic thing (can’t last). Very bizarro.

I found myself sitting opposite Liz, with Michelle to my right, and gorgeous (actual friend) Flo to my left. Liz would not stop talking about how clever she is, trying to discuss some bit of whatevs she’d read in the NYT. Something to do with women being made to feel bad about their bodies, so that people can make money out of fixing the source of badness. What now, now? I wasn’t aware that we feel bad about our bodies. What’s to feel bad about, as long as you dedicate every waking hour to looking super hot until you draw your last breathe?? Mystery to me.

Liz, though, totes agreed with the story, and went on and on, quoting verbatio: “Show me a body part, I’ll show you someone who’s making money by telling women that theirs looks wrong and they need to fix it”. Could she not just send us all the link and be done with it, rather than bore everyone ridic?? God, she thinks she’s all that. She annoyed me so much that I got my iPhone 6 out of the beautiful McQueen Heroine tote I that bought last week, and, cupping the phone discreetly, I showed Flo the photos I have of Liz and her enormous snatch. Hilariously, bless her, Flo gasped and tried (failed) to raise her eyebrows, but kept right on listening to Liz’s NYT monologue, as if nothing had happened.

Next Michelle piped up, having apparently also read the article. (Don’t these people have LIVES??) She said that even though she’s in the business of pubic beautification, i.e. vajazzling, her work is “very much a celebration of femininity… a centuries-old adornment practice by women, for women”, yada yada yada. I switched off at that point because it occurred to me that I’m over-due for a Brazilian.

“So although I agree that the media and the increasing need to up the stakes, as it were, in the face of images that were only recently considered to be pornographic becoming mainstream… I still believe that there is a difference between internalised misogyny and a woman’s own desire to celebrate her body”, continued Michelle.

Having put an alert in my phone to schedule a wax, I started listening to that last bit and thought, “Oh yeah, sweets, well you’re so bloody knowledgeable about internalised misogyny and all that, but how much exacto do you know about your husband?!”

It’s all very well getting the full digital subscription to global news publications to make yourself look like a smarty-hottie-pants, but if you don’t even know what’s going on under your nose job, then HELLOOOO!!! Can I drop you a bone here?!

So that’s when it came to me. A stroke of pure honeyed genius. Manuka, babeses. Sweet, sweet Manuka.

As I thought about how profoundly irritating both Liz and Michelle are in the depthses of their beingses, I realised that I hold important news items about both of them. News that is not available via subscription. I know that Liz is a psycho husband-stalker with an acute case of vagenitical cunticulitis, because I have photographic evidence. And I know that Michelle’s husband Will is a serial player, because last year I experienced first-hand an attempt by him to assault my marital dignity.

So while the women were playing Who’s the Cleverest?, I came up with a divine win-win plan. I <3 win-wins. I decided to message Will asap with a polite request to tail Liz at times of my choosing, in order to find out wtf she’s up to. If she is sending these naked photos to Don, she may well be doing the same with other husbands, whose wives are probably less emotionally robust than me. I am all about the giving and the rescuing, so I cannot – nay will not – stand idly by while this woman attempts to wreak her nasty havoc on otherwise blissful expat marriages.

As part of my polite request, I’ll tell Will that, should he fail to comply, I can happily forward to Michelle screenshots of his flirtatious communications with me*. I might also inform her that I saw him last year with a petite Asian girlie, whom I realise now was most definitely not his half-sister.

Good plan, babeses and dear readers? Yes, lah. Amazebobs plan : )

I’d better go now because I only have a tiny slot of me time between the high tea and my evening date with a brand new BFF I met on the flight. You won’t believe what happened!! I can scarcely believe it myself. On the flight back from London, I was sitting next to a Russian chick. Yes, of course, I had spotted her from a mile off when we were both at the Terminal Two branch of Gucci, but the totes crazy thing is that we got chatting on the pihengi (that’s the phonetic pronunciation of airplane in Korean, spelt like this: 비행기, and you’d be wise to learn some Korean, babeses, don’t ask why, just trust me! They’re taking over the world, these Koreans!!), and…

I LOVE this Rrrrra-shon girlie!!!

Who’d have thought that I could fall in friend luv with someone so #bogan #newmoney #marriedtoabillionaire #yellowjeans #bling?!! I know, right??! But when we got talking, we just had so much in common! To the extent of spooky!!

Just like moi, she lives a glamorous life in Singapore, on the same iconic street as me (where has she been hiding?!), her kids are the same age as mine, her husband smokes Siglo VI Cohibas at the same cigar bar as Don, and we are both life-long dedicated yogis with an intense fondness for the tree pose. AND her d.o.b. is the first of April 1976, too! Unbelievable spookinesco.

So I’m meeting up with her in an hour to test out our unlikely friendship. Her name is Anastasia Jovakova. I think it’s a great testimony to my cultural objectivity that I am opening my friendship doors to a blingy Rrrrrra-shon. Don’t you agree? That’s what’s so awesome about expats: we totes connect with people who we might otherwise have seen as trash. Go, us! Viva La Expaterati!!!

 

* From last November. Pretty flirtatious, wouldn’t you say?…

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When an Expat Wife Gets a Job

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a trailing spouse will do one of the following things: get a job, have an affair, or become an alcoholic.

Despite it being universally acknowledged, I can’t say beyond a shadow of a doubt that it is truesome of me or many of the Expaterati I know. In my case, as loyal readers will know, I am totes my own person, and tend to swim against the tide. One of the awesomest things about me is that I can’t be pigeonholed, unlike the vast majority of people. If you look up EJ in the DSM V, you won’t find anything. (Yet!! LOLs.)

My “friend” Michelle, on the other hand, is an excellent illustration of the point because she did the booze thing, and now that she has stopped, she’s doing the job thing. As I told you, she bored me to tears on Tuesday, talking about her recovery, and how great it is to work again after being a stay at home alcoholic mother.

What I did not know was the precise nature of said employment. But I know now!!

Flo and I brunched this morning at an amazaFAB new place called Sacha and Sons (so Manhattan! So cooool!!) at the Mandarin Gallery. Jewish food is just way the biz.

Flo wanted to hear all about my lunch with Michelle, and then she was like, “Hey, but did she tell you what her job actually is?!”

So I was like, “No!! OMG, totes tell me!”

Flo told me that Michelle had put up a post on the Singapore Expat Wives Facebook page about her new company, but because it was kind of an ad it got taken down within three minutes. Flo is mega on the case with all things FB and beyond, so she was one of the few people to see it, like it, share it, Google it, Pin it, and follow it on LinkedIn and Instagram.

So here’s the skinny… Michelle is the co-founding partner and marketing lead of Vajaz, the first vajazzling salon in Singapore.

WOAH!! New respect to you, lady!! (Though she can’t be so hot at marketing if I hadn’t heard of it.) Flo said they’re doing a roaring trade – more vaj through the door than the recently opened LuluLemon.

So I’m taking my hat off a tad to Michelle after all, even if she messed unforgivably with my chi. I should pop over to the salon some time, to get myself vajazzled. My only concern is that I spend quite a lot of time sunning myself pool-side at the many clubs on the island. Could I inadvertently blind someone if my bikini slipped sideways? I’m don’t think I’m insured for that sort of thing.

 

Photo credit: http://michellejoni.com/vajazzling/

Photo credit: http://michellejoni.com/vajazzling/

Hey Expat Wife, Don’t You Mess With My Chi!

Today, after my placenta neck treatment, I had lunch with Michelle. Flo said last week that Michelle wanted to hook up with me, so I wasn’t too surprised when she sent me an iCal invite to meet at my local PS Café, at the Paragon. That’s pretty much roll-out-of-bed territory for me, given that I live five minutes’ walk away, and I’m always up for anything on their menu or amazebobs specials. I don’t care who I go there with. I just love going there.

I have to confess that I was a little nervous because I’ve had some weirdo-mundo flashbacks involving her husband, Will, and I see now that actually something did happen. I knew, though, that I am a master of affect-regulation, so I accepted the invitation, just to have an excuse to go to PS Paragon.

So I was totes relieved when Michelle stopped twizzling the straw in her lime mint soda and said, “EJ, the reason I wanted to see you today is that I want to say that… I’m sorry.”

(What now, now???)

She continued, hesitantly: “I’m in the twelve-step program now, and part of that is saying sorry to people… You probably don’t know this, but I used to talk behind your back. I said some awful things about you – that you’re stupid, ignorant, pretentious, a wannabe… And so I want to apologise to you. It was awful of me to have said those things, and I am truly sorry.”

Being the mahusively magnanimous person that I am, I totes forgave her, saying, “Hey no worries, babes, that’s utterly cool, no worries.”

(Pretentious?? Moi?! Where’d she get that crazy idea from?? The drink has obvioso addled her brain.)

She then proceeded to bore the bejingies out of me by talking about her recovery, and her new job. Apparently, after she dried out, she found herself some employment. So she blabbed and blabbed about her job, and how great it is to feel “useful and relevant in the workforce again” having spent so many years raising her children.

When she talked about her job, a little voice inside me said, “Hey, you used to have a job… You used to be independent…”

But then I noticed that I needed a gel pedi, and that the Givenchy 40% off sale was about to end, and that my Hyatt membership was for renewal. Stuff to do!! I don’t have time for a job, particularly as a stay-at-home mother. The helper wouldn’t be able to cope without me.

So I silenced the annoying little voice, sending it back to that corner of my brain full of things that aren’t true, and then reaised the real reason that Michelle had wanted to see me: she has always been jealous of me, and she thought that by getting a job, she could rub it in my face and thereby thusly have one up on me. Ha! I don’t think so, sweetie!!

We finished our lunch, and as we said goodbye, Michelle went all doe-eyed. She gave me a hug (I’m not a fan of hugging in hot climates, let’s just stick to air-kissing please), saying, “Honestly, EJ, I am so very sorry. If you ever need someone to talk to, give me a call and we’ll go for a tea. Just reach out. Any time.”

I concealed my utter bewilderment – why would I need someone to talk to?! I’m not the recovering alcoholic with a philandering husband! – and said goodbye as sweetly as possible, despite her pathetic, unnecessary compassion assault.

When I got down to Givenchy to try on the dress I’ve been admiring for ages (only $2,400 now, with the 40% off!), I reflected that Michelle had really done a number on my chi. Grrrrrrr. She staged this whole clean-up and get a job thing just to piss me off! I stood in front of the mirror in the dress. I looked stunning. Yes, I thought, maybe I will reach out to her for a cup of tea and a chat-ski. I could tell her all about the many times that her husband has come on to me. That would burst her bubble. She’ll go flying back to the booze. You messed with the wrong chick, honey.

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Ladies’ Night, Expat Stylee

Bar Canary

Bar Canary

Now that I have mega sold out by writing a piece that might have popular appeal, I’ll get back to something way more fascinating: my sexy life.

Since coming home from our hard work “holiday” in Boracay, I have been partying proper, in true expat wifey fashion. It has been a rockin’ week of brunches, lunches, and mahusiv nights out (I can’t tell you how totes elates I was to see our helper when we got back). I went out so much that I don’t even mind it’s Sunday today, and I’m on family duty again.

Anybody who’s somebody on this lovely island of Singapore knows that Wednesday night is Ladies’ Night. I like to offer my patronage to my fave venues (if I decide to forgo evening yoga), and last Wednesday me and my girlies full-on twerked the place apart at Bar Canary, Expaterati stylee.

We started at Jaan which is an amazebobs fine dining restaurant, awesomely described by a beautiful fellow blogger babe here, where the unagi eel is to die for. It’s a sensible plan to get some unagi circulating in the gut before imbibing large quantities of bubbly. Because of the medicinal nutrition course I did a while back, I know that eel releases enzymes in the body which work synchronicitously with the champagne grape so to metabolise fats and toxins in such a way that one emerges from the evening experience slimmer, more toned, and better integrated holistically the following day.

Bar Canary has – shock horror – almost doubled its charge for free-flowing Möet, but the good news is that it’s not just the usual hour and a half, it’s all night! The coolio thing about that is you don’t get the icky pub chucking out time feeling like in the UK, where everyone is trying to down as much as they possibly can within a limited time frame. Non-Expaterati peeps may be surprised to hear this, but I have witnessed even the classiest of ladies abso chugging the bubbles between 7.30 and 9PM on a ladies’ night, as if there weren’t 15,000 containers of the stuff just off Sentosa. Quite grotesque. I, of course, would nevva evva do that. Nevva evva evva?? No. Nevva evva evva.

At the bar there were an unusual number of young people, which threw me a little. We don’t generally see youngsters at these things. Turned out it was a wedding party. How sweet! It was their champagne reception, mega-LOLs. Even LOLier, because the chaps in their crew were probs paying the à la carte price hahaha!!

When Blurred Lines came on (I just <3 that song, and anyone who says it’s demeaning to women is ridic, or jealous of Emily’s boobsters, which I am not because mine are v similar to hers), we more experienced ladies showed the little girls what hot moves are truesomely about. Their wedding party guys were practically all over us. 

“Don’t touch what you can’t afford, boyzies!”, Flo shouted above the music, and totes cracked us up. The guys didn’t exactly “touch”, other than some obvioso on purpose bumping into us on the dance floor, but they were defo checking us out big time. The young groom was pretty much undressing me with his eyes.

I was glad I’d worn my zips-up-both-sides Versace little black leather dress with black patent 120 mm Louboutin heels because it’s an outfit that really fires the imagination. People think it’s just an effortless combination I throw together, but I am well aware of the awesome impact I make. For extra on-trendness, I wore long white satin gloves. No sweetses, I wasn’t doing an Amal! Whatevs, and all that human rights crap! I was doing Audrey in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, por supuesto. Amal couldn’t carry off a cigarette holder – no way, no how.

After our amazebobs dancing, the young ladies in the wedding party flocked to us, wanting to chat. They were embarrassingly trolleyed (these fillies just can’t hold their drink), and bombarded us with questions about our fabulous designer gear, our priceless jewelry, and our impressive marriages. They were all like, “Oh you’re so beautiful, you’re so gorgeous, you must be 34 tops!”, and we were all like, “Oh honeys, your so sweet!”

We went to the loo together at one point, and the girls started asking me, Flo, and Jen for advice about long-term relationships. They must have had a sense that we’re at the top of our game, and we generously gave them the secrets to expat marital bliss. (Should I write a post about that?)

Then Jen said the weirdest thing! She went all confidential, looking around like she was making sure no one was listening (except me, Flo, and the three wedding party girlies, including the bride, and the CCTV cameras), and said in a stage whisper, “Actually, ladies, I’m having some quite stressful relationship issues right now!”

The girls looked wide-eyed at Flo and I, and Flo said, “Really? But I thought your marriage was perfect! You and Rich always look so happy!”

“Oh! God, yeah, no, we have a great marriage!”, Jen replied, laughing, “No, that’s totally fine! The problem is …”

So we’re all looking at Jen, like wtf is she going to say next, when bride girlie (Bethany, I think her name was) opens her mouth and voms all over the floor, splashing my Loubouties!! Oh god, peeps, what fresh hell is this again now now?!!

We left Bethany in the care of her sistas (we’re mothers ferchrissake! We get enough bodily effluvia at home, than-Q v much!!), and went back to the bar.

Glamorously sitting ourselves back down (carefully arranging our legs to eliminate signs of cellulite), the waiter refilled our glasses, and then there was this totes awkz tumbleweed moment. Flo looked at me, I looked at Flo, and we both looked at Jen. Jen lit a cigarette, stood up, and took a belfie to put on Twitter.

Breaking the silence, Flo said, “Ok now EJ, there’s something I have to tell you. You know I’m not one to chitchat, but I ran into Michelle last week at Prada – OMG have you seen their Spring collection?! – and she said she wants to talk to you.”

I gulped and shuddered (because, as regular readers know, I have a teensy bit of history with Michelle’s hus, Will), but hid it with James Bond-like affect regulation and my pretty Kate Middleton smile. Flo is a bit of a major goss, so there was no way I was going to let anything slip.

“That’s so nice!”, I replied, “Because I haven’t seen her for the longest time!! She probably wants to ask me about the best green smoothies for detoxing – she stopped drinking, right? – or about Third Culture Kid stuff because she knows I did that counselling course, and one of my pages is about expat kids“.

Flo was just going to answer when Bethany and her gang plonked themselves down at our table, asking how we were “so well-preserved at your age”.

As you can imagine, dear readers, enough was effing well enough at that point, so I was like, “Woah babeses!! We’re just here, having a chat, bustin’ a chill, and frankly I think it’s totes time for you to jog on.”

Bethany looked like she had just heard her crappy IB score all over again, and one of her stupid harem said to Flo (she defo wasn’t talking to me), “You don’t look 34, you look 54, and you’re all pathetic wannabes who should be at home with your cheating husbands and your messed up kids!”

As I lifted my champagne flute and launched the contents at the girl’s face, I knew that I was doing the right thing. What kind of parenting have these young people had for them to behave like such utter B’s? Disgraceful.

God forbid my sweet little (ok so she is a bit porky) Milly turns out like that.

 

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.

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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Melbourne Cup! (Australians are SUCH wannabes)

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Ok, so, I have a lot of Australian friends. Tons. And you know who you are, preeeety ladeeees! Love ya!! Amazo fun chicks. What I’m writing about today is so totes N.O.T. about you, girlies : ) Mwa-Mwa xox

What I didn’t realise from living in London is that Aussies are seriously such wannabes. In London they just all seemed super nice. Back-packery drinking types. Since joining the elite expaterati though, I have inadvertently stumbled upon a profound realisation. Basically, at the end of the day, if I’m honest, Aussies want to be real British people – well, people from the south of England, I mean – like they could’ve been, had their ancestors not made some really rubbish decisions.

What proves my point is Adelaidians. I am reliably informed that people from Adelaide are a cut above other Australians because they are descended from the only free settlers in the country. And so, people from Adelaide speak with a more plummy, more English accent (LOL, well they think they do!! I beg to differ, Your Honour!!). Now if it is generally accepted that people who are more like us Brits are superior, then we can quickly establish beyond even the faintest shadow of a doubt that therefore all Australians want to be English. Not only that, but ideally they also want to be related to the Queen. [I haven’t mentioned this, and I’m not one to boast or name-drop because I don’t need that sort of fake ego-boosting (Clara says it’s a defence, and the thing about me is, what you see is what you get, I’m totes my own person, & I don’t need to pander to the crowd), but I am related to the Royals. On my second cousin ex-husband’s side. Yes. True story.]

Anyway, so I went to the Melbourne Cup party here in Singapore a couple days ago, with all my gorgeosa Aussie girlfriends. I wanted to update you on it asap, but yesterday was just a wash-out. I had to stay in bed all day because my head was pounding. I don’t think it was the champagne or the late night. It was more the pressure of the fascinator. I had it bespoked, and it was quite heavy because of the battery pack for the flashing lights, and the wireless router so that I could display my Twitter feed via a small screen on my head. What with the weight of all that, the headband part needed to have a very tight grip on my skull to stop it falling off. Ouchey!!

Don’s bank was one of the sponsors, so he came too. He acted like it was suuuuuch a big drag for him (especially after catching the red-eye back from Cape Town the night before), but for some utterly unknowable reason he wore one of his best suits. So of course, he won the best dressed man! Meanwhile I came third for most creative hat. Is there no justice in this world??

Despite the fact that it was such a major bore for him, he looked pretty happy to be chatting up the 350 women there, many of whom were trolleyed and abso gagging for it. Hmmmmm. It was sickening how these women were coming onto him. And he was lapping it up, positively purring to himself. A revolting spectacle.

At one point during the roof bar after-party, I had to take Don aside and have some strong words with him. He feigned ignorance, as if he had zero clue that these be-hatted whores were hanging on his every word.

Not long later, he said he had to go because the travel had caught up with him. Liz left around the same time which was such a shame. I was looking forward to chatting with her about her previous work in publishing, and my promising career as an author.

Once Don was gone, I felt a bit disappointed that Will wasn’t there (work), but he would’ve hated all those women throwing themselves at him. So not his scene. Plus, Michelle disgraced herself, as per usuo, and that would have been completely upsetting for him.

Doom and gloom wife was there, wearing vomitly vile shoes, and she somehow ended up in our gang. She was talking about how terrible it was that the two horses died (ya, bloody terrible for me!! They were the only two I bet on! Wtf, horseys?!), and saying that it’s barbaric and disgusting that we were getting drunk on champagne and having a laugh, when the animals at the centre of it all were being exploited. And that 15,000 racehorses are slaughtered every year just because they’re not fast enough. And that we should all sign a pledge to stop betting on horses because we’re “betting on cruelty”.

“Oh god, here we go!”, I thought. I didn’t want that miserable woman plundering my buzz, so I told her quite plainly that exploiting, degrading, and abusing animals for pleasure is just one of those things that we humans do. We’ve always done it! Since the dawn of time!! So deal, baby. Get over it, and get over yourself!! That sorted her out. She moved to a different table, thank phewie, so that the rest of us could get back to our interesting conversations about helpers and holidays.

Friday Night De-Briefed

I’m still tired today, but I dragged myself out of bed to go to the new Lulu Lemon shop that has just opened at the Ion. So much yay!! I was gutted that I missed the big launch last Saturday, so I had to make sure to pay my respects asap.

But back to the Halloween Ebola fundraiser because I promised you I’d fill you in on that.

So, Michelle was drunk from the beginning. Honestly, it looked like she had vom’d all down her front, but that was actually part of her costume. It was v unfortunate because she was on meet and greet. Not a good look for a meeter or a greeter : (

Will, get this, came as… A hot Ebola doctor. Coincidence!! He wore a doctors jacket, but underneath all he had on was these haha:

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He pulled them off though (LOLs! NPI haha!!) because he’s a squash-player. Fabbo buns. Even if the right cheek is rather larger and more chiselled than the left.

He was really sweet because he could see I was under pressure, and not getting much support from my useless team of hags. He helped me out with the raffle, confidently wielding the mic to announce the winners. I’m not good at public speaking. I would like to work on it though because I’m hoping to start vlogging soon, so that I can go viral. Just writing doesn’t seem to be doing the trick; I don’t know why.

Once the party was winding up, I could finally relax, and pat myself on the back for a job well done. Michelle had passed out and their driver had to carry her to the car (not for the first time, I’m guessing!), so Will grabbed a bottle of Krug and two glasses from the bar, and we snuck up to the roof terrace. I didn’t even know that place had a terrace. We talked for a while about what a great success the party had been (btw, he had changed into a suit by that point haha), and then we got talking about our marriages. He and M have been married a lot longer than Don and I, and it was interesting – but quite sad – to hear how badly she treats him. By the sounds of it, he has given her everything a woman could want (they live in a black and white!), but he said that the more he has given her, the more distant and unpleasant she has become. I’ve never really thought about how hard it must be for a man to have a disappointing wife. You usually hear horror stories about the other way around: aloof/ philandering/ crappy husbands.

I told him a bit about Don, and how he’s really not interested in anything I have to say. He listened v attentively, and was super sympathetic. He didn’t diss Don though, which I thought was cool. He really seemed to get where I was coming from, and it was totes lovely to feel heard like that. He’s quite the conundrum because you’d think that someone in his line of work would be a bit of a C-word. Not at all though.

So we were getting along amazingly well (I’m pretty certain our souls know each other from a previous existence), and then his phone rang. It was Michelle. I could hear her ranting down the phone, telling him to “get your ass back home”. Classy, Michelle. Real classy. He said he had better go, “before she does something stupid” (what?), and told me his driver could drop me home en route.

On the way to his car, he said he had had a “wonderful evening”, and enjoyed spending time with such an “open, thoughtful, and beautiful lady”. Awwwwww : ) Then he said that all evening he had wanted to kiss me, but he didn’t want to make me feel uncomfortable. So I had to ask if he does this kind of thing all the time. He said no, never. Then his driver appeared.

And that, dear readers, was that. Don rang from Cape Town the next day. He didn’t even ask about how the party went. So why should I tell him??

I had better get ready for yoga now. It’ll take me a good half an hour to decide which of my new Lulu pieces to wear.

Ebola Halloween Fundraiser! & Mrs Expat Singapore!!

I cannot apologise enough for leaving you hanging, dear reader(s?) (hello Mummy!! Lolol, that’s still funny, isn’t it??). Since Don got back I have been quite busy because him being here means there has to be a meal on the table most nights, rather than me going out for dinner with the gals, or grabbing a quick poached chicken breast at home. So, I have to put a ton of time and energy into scouring recipe books and websites to do the menu planning for the helper. Plus, if I’m in an Ottolenghi mood (love, love, LOVE Ottolenghi!), she often needs the ingredients explained to her (yawn), AND I need to tell her exactly which specialist shops in the various corners of the island to go to.

The other reason I’ve been so outlandishly busy is that I have been organising an Ebola fundraising Halloween party, in my capacity as Events Chair of the Singapore International Women and Trailing Spouses Association (SIWTSA). The response has been phenomenal, even with the ticket price at $600 per head. I think everyone is as excited as I am about the theme of Ghoulish and Ghastly Disease Victims. My idea : ). The Expaterati are positively a-spew with excitement on Twitter. Such a great idea of mine. It’s a wonderful way of raising awareness about a really terrible illness, even if it’s only Africans who can get it.

Anyway, because of all this, I haven’t had a second to myself. Until today, that is, when I went for my colour (though I am a natural redhead), and keratin treatment (an anti-frizz must in Singapore – just ask Vicks Beckham about the ravaging toll this climate takes on the coiffure). As I sat there for four hours, I allowed my mind to wander, and I found that it wandered to… Michelle’s husband. He has sent me another message in the interim: “BTW, please call me Will. That’s what my good friends call me. Michelle calls me Bill lol.”

I didn’t answer, but I thought it was quite a sweet message really. Will is a much sexier name than Bill!

Then I thought about Don, and how he doesn’t say sweet things to me, or listen to much I say. Like the fundraiser, for example. He has shown abso no interest when I’ve told him all my exciting and highly creative plans for the event. He just says, “Yes, dear”, and changes the subject. Plus he’s away for the actual party, so he isn’t even coming. He told me where he’s going, but I can’t recall.

I realised that I was feeling something I haven’t felt for years. Not since the days when I used to have a job. I realised that despite all the things I am busy with, I am feeling bored. Which is depressing, and I refuse to feel depressed (hmmmm, maybe it’s time to relocate to a different country). Not my modus operandi! Depression is for people who have no control over their lives, like that doom and gloom expat wifey I met the other day. People call it an illness, but come on! Ebola, now there’s a proper illness. You don’t see great parties, fund-raising for depressed people, now, do you?? No! Because they would be crap, miserable parties.

When I got home, I tried on the dress I’ll be wearing to the Melbourne Cup in a few weeks. It’s still a little tight around the waist, but there’s time. I looked in the mirror, admired my lovely hair, and had one of those powerful epiphany moments when I realised that I actually look fantastic. I do get a lot of male attention, but I’ve always chosen to ignore it. It’s only since “Will” (awwww) has turned up that I realise my confidence has taken a bashing from all these years of being Yes Deared by Don. I see now that I have been hiding my not insignificant light under a bushel.

And I know what I need to do about it. I need to take control.

Yes. So, I am going to enter the Mrs Expat Singapore pageant! In fact, I am going to win that thing!! Or at least come second. (Or third.)

I have a frock picked out from the Paragon already. Take a look at this tangerine triumph, dear reader!

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One last piece of news (I is on a roll today, innit??). I think the Gucci bag Don got me in Dubai is a fakee. Oh, Don : (

A Tale of Two Husbands

Another stressful couple of days, dear reader(s).

One of the yoga places I go to that I really rate (and my rating should not be under-estimated in its value, given that I am an accomplished lifelong yogi, and can do the crow pose) is on Orchard, not far from my house. It’s one of those very earnest and spiritual, but warehousey-cool places (so cool they don’t provide any means of drying your hands after using the loo – I love that nonconformity!), where the atmosphere is befittingly sombre and dignified. I can’t stand it when people don’t take their practice seriously.

I really needed to go this evening because it has been a serio stresso couple of days. As it turned out though, even the yoga was mega-stresso! There was a girl there, late twenties/ early thirties, all skinny and dressed up in her Lulu Lemon, like she has even the faintest idea of what yoga is really about. It’s not about the clothes, honey!!

When we were doing the tree pose she kept peering at me, like, can you hold this as long as I can? I held it AND I closed my eyes, which is a very difficult thing to do, as any experienced yogi would know. I flickered them open occasionally to check out how she was doing. Haha, lo and behold she was trying to close her eyes too, but kept losing her balance. Oh you silly girl! It takes a lot of serenity, loving karma, and oneness with the universe to achieve the closed-eye tree pose, sweetheart. Stupid b****.

So anyway, yes, serio stressoso time right now.

Don got back yesterday. The children greeted him like he was some kind of hero, returning victorious from battle. Come on, I’m the one who has spent the last week in battle! With those little ingrates.

Froo Froo dog is, I suspect, developing dog borderline personality disorder. That’s the most difficult disorder to work with in humans, Clara says. So, in dogs, I dread to think what we are going to do. I would welcome any suggestions. (And, don’t forget, you can follow me on twitter @expatej)

After the children were in bed, Don passed out. Great, sweetie. So good to have you home.

Having run out of floss, I went into his washbag (Don is a passionate flosser) to find his. I found something else though…

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And it was half-empty!! What fresh hell is this???

I mailed Don immediately to address the situation. I’m not one to let these things fester. It’s not good for my chi.

He rang me to say that it has always in his washbag, and I must have forgotten we used to use it, it has been so long. Excuse me, what now, now??? OK, that does ring a bell when I think about it, but taking it on a work trip? Hmmmmmmm.

Then something quite shocking happened, dear reader:

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I didn’t respond, but I can imagine that Michelle – much as I adore her ridic-amundo – is a nightmare wife, so I do feel for Bill. He seems like a nice guy, despite everything. I used to think Michelle was just a really fun lady. Now I’m starting to wonder what it must be like to be live with her 24/7. Flo told me she starts drinking in the morning! Argh!! No wonder she needs so much botox.

Oh dear, what a messed up day. I’m so glad I have a massage booked first thing tomorrow. FYI, the massage is at the Hyatt, of which I am now an Official Member. Having so arduously struggled with deciding which club to join, I realised that I needed to prioritise Me in this difficult process of remaining sane under duress. So, I joined the Hyatt rather than bothering with all the other clubby nonsense. So far, so good. It could do with a refurb, but I’m not one to make a scene.

The Who-Has-Lived-in-More-Countries Competition

I feel really really really peeved today, following a conversation with one of those irritating expat wives who thinks she knows it all. These women get on my nerves. Let’s call her “Betty”. (I know she writes a blog too – about her fascinating travels, of course – so I wouldn’t want her to be identifiable.)

Anyway, so I was at a lunch with a few ladies, having a nice chat with Michelle (argh! should I tell her about what her husband did?! Awkward!!), and then this Betty pipes up and starts going on about their last country, and all the other ones she has lived in. She listed all the countries, and while other people were trying to talk about something else, she just kept at it. So annoying and immature! I’ve lived in more countries than you, Ms Betty Boo, so you can just stfu!!

Finally, someone else managed to get a word in, and the topic changed to expat/ third culture kids, and how fun it is for them to move around all the time. Then, Betty threw herself with full force back into the conversation, but this time tried to tell everyone how her kids are so much more third culture than everyone else’s!

My kids may be younger, but they’re just as TC as hers. I hope she leaves soon, and then she can add another country to her stupid list.

The only thing that is making me feel slightly better is that I noticed they’re opening a new Vietnamese restaurant in the Paragon. There’s really nothing like a good pho.

Friend’s Husband Attempted to Play Footsie With Me – Is this normal behaviour??!!

Don is still in Dubai, and I’ve spent a lot of this week slightly freaking out about what happened last weekend. This is the first time I’ve felt calm enough to reflect on it, and I’ve been so upset that I haven’t been able to blog. I guess I just need to get it out, so that I can move on.

So, this is what happened…

Don and I went for dinner last Saturday with Michelle and her husband Bill, and another couple we know from our last country.

Michelle looked absolutely stunning for a woman of her age. I don’t know how she does it. She must be at least six and a half years older than me. A mutual friend Flo, who knew Michelle from their last country, confided in me that Michelle is on the Botox, but in a big way (much more than just the usual sprinkle that we all have). That must be it. I wonder if she has had collagen fillers too. And those boobs… Surely they’re not her own. Anyway, she looks fabulous, and how she manages to have flat, shiny hair in this climate is just beyond me.

So, we had an aperitif before going into the restaurant, and then a fair amount of wine with the starter. Bill was sitting opposite me, and when he brushed my foot with his the first time, I thought nothing of it. It was after the fifth time that I started to wonder, although his sparkly green eyes were firmly fixed on the proceedings, listening intently, and telling stories about his early years as a junior trader.

When the entrees arrived, he brushed my foot again, this time moving up my leg a little, and glanced at me with a bemused look. I met his gaze, but I was a little shocked, so I looked down at my food, and asked Don what he was having. What was this guy doing?? Is this normal behaviour? Surely not! I’m his wife’s friend, FGS. (Michelle doesn’t read blogs, so as long as no one in Singapore reads this, she’ll never know.)

Later on during the meal, Michelle was utterly trolleyed, and started loudly debating/ arguing about Bali with the other woman, Jenny. Jenny was of the opinion that Bali is so 2008, and that it’s much more cool to go off the beaten track to Yogyakarta or Laos; while Michelle said she feels attached to their regular haunts in Bali, and “what’s so wrong with going back to the same place?”

Most of the table, including Don, joined in with the discussion, but Bill tilted his head back, let out a sigh, and nudged his foot up my calf. He had taken his shoes off (!), and this time as he moved his foot up my leg, he stared right at me! I glared at him, putting as much resistance as possible into my facial expression, as if to say, “Hey, mister! That’s not ok!!”.

Yawning, he smiled and looked away. He put his arm around Michelle, who was now yelling at the top of her slurred voice about the profound serenity of Ubud.

So, this morning I’m sitting here with my kale, beet, banana, wheatgrass, and mangosteen smoothie, and my skinny double purple pod Nespresso, still wondering what on earth that was all about.

Bill may be a very charming and interesting man, with extremely lovely eyes, but he’s married to one of the most stunning women I have ever met. And he knows, of course, that I’m married! So what was he doing? Why would a man – especially a man with such a beautiful wife – come on to a married woman – especially one who is less beautiful (surely!) than his wife??

Bizarre and totes uncomfortable. I’ve heard about this kind of thing happening among the Expaterati, but I didn’t think it would happen to little ole moi.

Doom and Gloom Expat Wifey

This morning I was at the Forum getting my nails done, and I struck up a conversation with the woman next to me. Actually, she struck up a conversation with me, to ask if she could borrow my iphone charger, but anyway. (Ahem, who goes out without a charger?!)

As it turned out, this woman was all doom and gloom about being an expat. Excuse me?! She pretentiously called herself a “reluctant expat”, saying that it was her husband’s idea and she had only agreed to come as a short-term compromise. She was saying that she finds this life un-grounding (what does that even mean?! Who cares about feeling grounded when there are all these exciting new places to go and people to meet?), and not only that, but that she thinks it isn’t the healthiest way for children to grow up. Bizarre. Why would anyone not want their housing paid for, as well as the private schooling for the kids (which would cost an abso bomb at home), and to be able to dash off to Bali at the drop of a hat?? She said they’re not on that kind of package though, and that lots of people aren’t these days. Argh! What a miserable woman, I thought, and I was totes relieved when her nails were dry, her Havaianas back on, and she left.

After that, I had pilates, and then I met up with Michelle for lunch. I love her! She is a major LOLs lady. Champagne and oysters : ) Now there’s a woman who knows how to have fun (and without too many calories). Next we went to a friend’s photography exhibition, and for cocktails with some other ladies, and for dinner and drinks at Marina Bay. Thank goodness we have a helper to put the kids to bed! I can barely type, I’m so tired now. I think I might have to cancel my meditation session in the morning. I am extremely dedicated to my meditation practice (I’ve been doing it for years, and I’m also a committed yogi), but it does get kind of samey.

Some great tunes tonight at the bar in Marina Bay. I’m thinking of adding a new page to this blog: DJ EJ. Likee : ) You can really get to know a person from their musical preferences. Maybe I’ll do that tomoz instead of going to meditation. Just skip it this once.