Top 5 reasons why I love hanging out at airports

hanging out at airportsMany peo­ple arrive at the air­port just to give them­selves enough time to check in and get to their gate with­out giv­ing them­selves a heart attack and caus­ing any has­sle to the rest of the pas­sen­gers. I, on the oth­er hand, arrive at air­ports with over 2 hours to spare, not only because I’m para­noid that some­thing might go wrong. I just love hang­ing out at air­ports! Below are my top 5 reasons:

Top 1: I love watch­ing aero­planes take off and land.

There is some­thing com­fort­ing about watch­ing planes take off and land. They’re such mas­sive vehi­cles that it nev­er ceas­es to amaze me that they can move with so much grace. Of course, it helps that I can’t hear the engines roar­ing in the back­ground — that would def­i­nite­ly spoil the grace­ful­ness I can see!

hanging out at airportsTop 2: I love watching the behind-the-scenes.

Sit­ting just out­side the board­ing gates usu­al­ly pro­vide me with first-class seats to all the behind-the-scenes at the air­port. Watch­ing every inch of the plane checked, the load­ing and unload­ing of suit­cas­es, pilots get­ting on the plane and press­ing some but­tons, and hav­ing the plane ush­ered into posi­tion are extreme­ly entertaining.

Top 3: Window-shopping to the max.

I don’t shop a lot because I just don’t, but win­dow-shop­ping is extra fun at air­ports. At nicer air­ports, you get a mix of the shops for the rich and the not-so-rich. Inter­est­ing finds are not a rar­i­ty either. If I find some­thing extreme­ly rare and I think I’d lose sleep for not buy­ing it, then I give in and strike out the ‘win­dow’ in window-shopping.

hanging out at airportsTop 4: I enjoy having my warm chai latte while reading a good book or immersing myself on my phone.

I live a life that doesn’t allow me a lot of time to just get into the groove of read­ing a book or immers­ing myself on my phone. When you’re at the air­port, you can only do so much — yay! This means I can for­get about work and just indulge myself in the sim­ple joys of read­ing or surf­ing while sip­ping my warm drink.

Top 5: I like people-watching.

Peo­ple have dif­fer­ent rea­sons for leav­ing a coun­try, which are list­ed on the depar­ture card or arrival card you have to fill out. When I’m in the mood, and I have that much time to kill, I watch peo­ple and come up with sto­ries as to why they’re leav­ing. The emo­tions are so vari­able and real, and the sto­ries are so mov­ing and thought-pro­vok­ing that I’d love to come up with a TV series about peo­ple at the airport.

The next time you leave a coun­try, go to the air­port a bit ear­li­er than usu­al and try to see things from my point of view. Maybe after doing this, you’ll become a con­vert and start hang­ing out at air­ports like me.

Top 5 reasons why I LOVE Mondays

why I love Mondays

For many peo­ple, Mon­day is a curse. After a long or short week­end, usu­al­ly the lat­ter, I under­stand why peo­ple find it dif­fi­cult to start their week. I, how­ev­er, have 5 rea­sons why I love Mondays. 🙂

Top 1 reason why I love Mondays: Mondays are best for catch-ups with colleagues.why I love Mondays

Did you do any­thing spe­cial at the week­end?” is a top-gross­ing ques­tion on Mon­days. Cof­fee breaks are pep­pered with con­ver­sa­tions of how much or how lit­tle they did on the week­end. Some even have pho­tos to show of their spec­tac­u­lar Sat­ur­day and Sunday.

Top 2 reason why I love Mondays: Mondays give you the opportunity to do the work you weren’t able to accomplish the week before.

Final­ly, you can now fin­ish what you want­ed to do last week. Feel­ing fresh after the break, you may even have a sur­plus of ener­gy to get the job done quicker.

why I love MondaysTop 3 reason why I love Mondays: Mondays give you a a fresh start.

The week before may not have been kind, but that’s all in the past, and Mon­days make that offi­cial. With the begin­ning of the week comes a reset but­ton and a fresh start for everything.

Top 4 reason why I love Mondays: Mondays allow you to fix something that was bugging you at the weekend.

Have you ever had a task that you remem­bered over the week­end and can’t do any­thing about? Mon­days allow you to rec­ti­fy that and final­ly put the nag­ging feel­ing to rest.

why I love MondaysTop 5 reason why I love Mondays: Mondays are perfect for meetings as everyone seems rejuvenated and productive.

Mon­day meet­ings are usu­al­ly the best as col­leagues seem to pos­sess a clear­er mind than most days. After a relax­ing week­end, peo­ple may have a dif­fer­ent per­spec­tive on con­tro­ver­sial issues as well.

why I love Mondays

I’m just jok­ing — I don’t love Mon­days!  I hon­est­ly don’t. Today is Sun­day and the line “weekend’s near­ly over” keeps play­ing in my head. I kid you not.

Share this if you like Mon­days as much (or as lit­tle) as I do. Cheers!

Top 5 reasons to walk your dog

Dogs are won­der­ful pets to have. They can make you laugh, for­get your prob­lems, appre­ci­ate life, be healthy and inspire you to be self­less. If you’re lucky, you can find your­self in a beau­ti­ful rela­tion­ship com­pa­ra­ble to what you have with a best friend or close fam­i­ly member.

Like with oth­er rela­tion­ships, you’ve got to work hard to nur­ture your bond with your canine. One of the best ways is to take him or her for a walk every day.

Some­times, tak­ing your dog for a walk can be a pain, espe­cial­ly on a cold and rainy winter’s day. If this rou­tine is start­ing to become a chore, the list below might inspire you. Read the top 5 rea­sons to walk your dog.

Top 1 reason: Walking your dog means your adding to your daily step count.reasons you walk your dog

If you have a job that requires you to sit in front of a com­put­er the whole day, and your only source of 8,000 steps is the three times you go to the toi­let and rare vis­its to the kitchen or pantry, thank your pup for the exer­cise. As you walk or some­times jog along with your ener­getic dog, you’re able to make your­self a lit­tle health­i­er while you strength­en your bond with him or her.

Top 2 reason: Your dog can make friends while you’re walking.

why walk your dog

Pho­to cred­its to Max Pixel

Dogs are social ani­mals. When they see oth­er dogs, they either get excit­ed or aggres­sive. In the book Inside of a Dog: What Dogs, See, Smell, and Know, Alexan­dra Horowitz reveals that dogs can share thoughts and news by smelling each oth­er. By walk­ing your dog, you’re giv­ing your pup the oppor­tu­ni­ty to get some juicy infor­ma­tion and more impor­tant­ly, make bud­dies aside from you.

Top 3 reason: You, too, can make friends if you walk your dog.

Imag­ine the peo­ple you can meet by just walk­ing your dog. When your dog inter­acts with humans, there’s a big chance you’ll have a chat with these peo­ple as well.  If this hap­pens quite often with a par­tic­u­lar per­son, it’s almost inevitable for you and the stranger to get to know each other.

Top 4 reason: You might meet the man or woman of your dreams thanks to your dog.

why walk your dog

Pho­to cred­its to Max Pixel

Dogs are supreme charm­ers. It’s com­mon for peo­ple find it hard to resist the excit­ed yelps, the man­ic tail wags and the adorable eyes of dogs. If you’re lucky (and you’re sin­gle), walk­ing your dog might be as effec­tive as join­ing a dat­ing site. Always look pre­sentable when you take your dog out for a stroll because one of your walks might pave the way for a roman­tic beginning.

Top 5 reason: You can discover new places while walking your dog.

Walk­ing your dog may make you more adven­tur­ous. Tak­ing the same route day in and day out can be a bit bor­ing. Spice it up by tak­ing dif­fer­ent routes. It’s alright to get lost as you might uncov­er some gems in the process, such as a store with unique finds, café, park or a spe­cial bench near your home that you would like to revis­it in the future.

Make the most out of walk­ing your pre­cious dog. When­ev­er you’re lazy to do your ‘dog duty’, try to remem­ber the rea­sons to walk your dog. Enjoy the spe­cial bond­ing moments with him or her, and be ready to embrace the adven­tures that come with walk­ing your pup.

First pup­py pho­to is licensed under the Cre­ative Com­mons Attri­bu­tion-Share Alike 4.0 Inter­na­tion­al license.

Top 5 reasons why people blog

With the advent of free and easy to set up blog sites, many peo­ple have start­ed to write their ideas online, includ­ing yours tru­ly. While people’s com­mit­ment to blog­ging may vary, I’m pret­ty sure one of their rea­sons for blog­ging is list­ed below. If you’re not into blog­ging yet and think it’s an absurd way to spend your free time, read what I think are the top 5 rea­sons why peo­ple blog, and hope­ful­ly you’ll under­stand why I’ve let blog­ging into my life.

Top 1 rea­son why peo­ple blog: Blog­ging is ther­a­peu­tic.

Some peo­ple get into cook­ing, colour­ing in, pho­tog­ra­phy and sewing because these have the pow­er to free them from their wor­ries. Blog­ging is the same and sreasons why people blogo much more. Stud­ies show that writ­ing is an effec­tive heal­er of a wound­ed soul. On the web­site The Gift of Writ­ing, Claire de Boer talks about how writ­ing can be an avenue to dis­sect the aspects of a prob­lem and deal with the issue in an objec­tive man­ner. The option to type instead of write on paper is a bonus that com­put­er savvy peo­ple have cap­i­talised on.

Top 2 rea­son why peo­ple blog: Some peo­ple are full of ideas.

If you feel like your brain is about to explode because you’ve got heaps of ideas to share, take up blog­ging. Peo­ple who are preg­nant with ideas use their web­sites as their bank. Once they’ve trans­ferred the ideas online, they can stop obsess­ing about them and can free their mind for new ones. More­over, blog­ging doesn’t have to be always pri­vate. Peo­ple who think they have good ideas are usu­al­ly hap­py to share them with the rest of the world. Get­ting pos­i­tive feed­back from friends and rel­a­tives is a plus, and from strangers, a gem.

Top 3 rea­son why peo­ple blog: Some peo­ple want to make mon­ey online.

It’s not easy, but it’s pos­si­ble. Wouldn’t it be a dream come to true to be able to earn mon­ey doing some­thing reasons why people blogyou enjoy, with very lit­tle finan­cial invest­ment required? With cre­ative ideas, a strong fol­low­ing, and plen­ty of hard work, you can make your web­site earn a few cents or even hun­dreds of dol­lars. I’m not yet a pro (and I don’t think I ever will), but I know that Google Adsense can cer­tain­ly ‘show you the money’.

Top 4 rea­son why peo­ple blog: Some peo­ple are sim­ply bored.

Bore­dom can pro­pel you to be pro­duc­tive or unpro­duc­tive. Those who blog pre­fer the for­mer. Blog­ging, like oth­er pas­time activ­i­ties, isn’t an activ­i­ty with a def­i­nite end. As long as your hands and eyes can han­dle it, you can keep blog­ging. You can write about your day, your trip home on the bus, your socks, or even your bore­dom. If you think hard enough, you’ll sure­ly find some­thing to blog about.

Top 5 rea­son why peo­ple blog: Some peo­ple can’t sleep.reasons why people blog

Some­times, peo­ple can’t sleep because their mind hasn’t stopped feed­ing them with infor­ma­tion. If you’ve tried telling your brain to stop many times and it didn’t fol­low its mas­ter, try blog­ging. Aside from emp­ty­ing your mind before bed, typ­ing and star­ing at a com­put­er screen may help set the mood for bed­dy-byes time.

If you haven’t got a blog of your own, con­sid­er cre­at­ing one. Blog for what­ev­er rea­son and start enjoy­ing the ben­e­fits of hav­ing on.

A VERY SPECIAL THANKS TO PIXABAY FOR THE PHOTOS (PUBLIC DOMAIN CC0 LICENSE.)

Top 5 British brands we must have in Australia

I’m not a big shop­per or food enthu­si­ast, but I’d like to have good options. Unfor­tu­nate­ly, this is one thing that Aus­tralia lacks. Since it is a first world coun­try that con­tin­ues to have strong ties with the Unit­ed King­dom of Great Britain and North­ern Islands (phew!), I expect to have more British brands in Australia.

I’m not British but my short but sweet trav­el to the UK has left me long­ing for the fol­low­ing brands:

Top 1 brand: Waitrose

Whilst Aus­tralia has Coles and Wool­worths bat­tling head-to-head in the super­mar­ket chain are­na with cameo roles played by Aldi and IGA, the British are Image result for waitrose logolucky to have Wait­rose, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Asda and Mor­risons. In my opin­ion, Wait­rose takes the cake (in a great way) for their deli­cious desserts, such as frozen sweets, tarts, pies and cheese­cakes. Walk­ing up and down the aisle was a delight­ful expe­ri­ence that I would like to have at my dis­pos­al in Australia.

Top 2 brand: Marks and Spencer

Image result for M&S logoThere were rumours of plans to open a Marks and Spencer store in Aus­tralia in 2016. The Tele­graph, unfor­tu­nate­ly, con­firmed in the same year that there’s no truth in the rumour. I won­der if it was just spread by those des­per­ate to get the retail giant in Oi! Oi! Land. Marks and Spencer in the UK, known for its super­mar­kets and depart­ment stores, sells rea­son­ably priced mid-mar­ket goods. I enjoyed shop­ping for food, espe­cial­ly meals and desserts, and clothes at M&S or as the British say ‘Marks and Sparks’. There is, how­ev­er, some sil­ver lin­ing as there is now a ded­i­cat­ed M&S web­site for the Aus­tralian mar­ket that guar­an­tees ease of deliv­ery and returns.

Top 3 brand: Zizzi Co.

Image result for zizzi co logoI’ve seen peo­ple in the UK queu­ing up despite the driz­zling rain in the win­ter just to have a Zizzi Co. Although it seemed like the Ital­ian piz­za chain was every­where, the qual­i­ty of the food is con­sis­tent­ly good. I espe­cial­ly love the cal­zone, piz­za with egg and spinach in the mid­dle and tiramisu. I’ve just had a look at their web­site and their spring spe­cial, melt­ed moz­zarel­la and pep­per pesto cro­quettes, is beck­on­ing me. I hope that one day I don’t need to endure a 24-hour flight, jet lag and sun-deprived days just to sat­is­fy my crav­ing for a Zizzi Co. meal.

Top 4 brand: White Stuff

Don’t be mis­led by the name. White Stuff doesn’t only sell white casu­al cloth­ing, shoes and acces­sories. In fact, there is no short­age of colour in their shops. Touch their tops, scarves, knitwear, and dress­es and straight away you’ll know that a lot of care has been put into the cre­ation of each item. While they sell men’s acces­sories and shoes, the bulk of their prod­ucts is tar­get­ed for women. Ladies can dress from head to toe with their wide White Stuffarray of out­door and indoor gar­ments. To this day, after over a year of pur­chase and many wash­es, I still trea­sure my knit­ted cardi­gan and dog­gy socks.

Top 5 brand: Schuh

Guess what they sell. Shoes! The shop boasts a won­der­ful col­lec­tion of shoes for every occa­sion and style pref­er­ence. Aside from pop­u­lar brands, Schuh also stocks up on its own label, my favourite Red or Dead, and oth­er less known but high-qual­i­ty shoes. Step into a Schuh shop and you’re schuh logoguar­an­teed to walk out with hap­py feet.

I can only dream that one day Aus­tralian investors would wake up to the real­i­ty that there is a mar­ket for pop­u­lar British brands. They can add me to the list of over a mil­lion Brits liv­ing in Aus­tralia who would be over the moon to have their favourites right at their doorstep.

If you there are oth­er British brands that you think the peo­ple in Aus­tralia deserve to have, let us know. Leave a com­ment, and hope­ful­ly our voic­es will be heard. 🙂

My Top 5 teddy photos

Ted­dies or stuffed toys can be very pho­to­genic and make real­ly good sub­jects because they can sit still for a looooong peri­od of time. They’re fun to trav­el with and always hap­py to strike as many pos­es as you want.

Check out my top 5 pho­tos of ted­dies in dif­fer­ent locations:

A bull in the bucket

No snow­man, just a cow

Just hang­ing around

The curly cow

Thirsty lions

If you have your own top 5 ted­dy pho­tos, we’d love to see them. Share them with us.

Top 5 simple reasons to smile

Some peo­ple asso­ciate hap­pi­ness or at least a rea­son to smile to suc­cess, pow­er or wealth. Although these make me hap­py, there are heaps of oth­er things that bring a smile to my face and joy to my heart.

The list I’ve got is so sim­ple that some peo­ple might raise an eye­brow or even think I’ve lost the plot. Hope­ful­ly, after read­ing my expla­na­tions, you too, might start see­ing it from my cheery point of view.

Top 1 Simple Reason to Smile: Walking behind elderly couples
  1. Most films only depict the love between young adults. As much as it some­times makes me gid­dy, I pre­fer the real-life elder­ly love. When I see them walk­ing hand in hand or show­ing any form of care to each oth­er, I can’t help but get teary as I know I’m look­ing at love bat­tered by chal­lenges yet stand­ing despite it all.
Top 2 Simple Reason to Smile: Tram, train or bus drivers beeping as they pass each other

I don’t know why, but I’ve always thought that the moment they share as they beep and some­times raise their hand is quite spe­cial. Unlike many of us, dri­vers don’t get to inter­act with their col­leagues on a reg­u­lar basis. They prob­a­bly get a bit lone­ly oper­at­ing a machine for hours with­out com­mu­ni­cat­ing with anyone.

Top 3 Sim­ple Rea­son to Smile: Dou­ble egg yolks Top 5 reasons to smile

It’s just a treat to get them. Its rar­i­ty makes me feel priv­i­leged to unrav­el these yolks. More­over, they’re just great for scram­bled and fried eggs. You get extra yel­low scram­bled eggs and a dou­ble-eyed egg which pro­vides a good start for your Elmo eggs.

Top 4 Simple Reason to Smile: The smell of pages of a new book

I get excit­ed when I see a new book and even more excit­ed when the pages smell of new­ness. Try smelling it next time!

Top 5 Simple Reason to Smile: An accidental invention of a new recipe

How many times have you been des­per­ate to cre­ate a dish using ingre­di­ents that didn’t seem to make sense when mixed togeth­er? It’s quite often that I’m stuck with odds and ends that are about to go off in a few days. Imag­ine how I felt when I was able to cre­ate a Mas­terchef qual­i­ty dish out of them. It doesn’t usu­al­ly hap­pen but the few times it did, I was over the moon.

List­ing sim­ple rea­sons to smile can be ther­a­peu­tic espe­cial­ly on a grim day. I find it nice to share my sources of joy to make peo­ple realise that we live in a beau­ti­ful world pep­pered with good­ness. Smile! 🙂

Is there any­thing that makes you smile? I look for­ward to read­ing your own list in our reply box. Thanks!