Birthday at Batam

I had been cracking my head thinking what could I plan for Jhon's birthday. We don't usually do big special surprises but I was in the mood even though I had bought him 2 gifts in advance.

On top of several other gift surprises, I told Jhon we are going to Batam for the first time (I know right?) for a 3hr massage from head to toe. He has always been complaining back pains for the longest time and I can only massage him 15-30 mins every night. So I figured, send him for it so I don't have to for a while and yes, I also kaypoh and joined in for a couple massage.

As mentioned before, it was a virgin trip for the both of us which was weird because Singaporeans love to go to and fro to Batam and here we are like mountain tortoises. Good thing was we are always up for 'adventure'.

I had booked the ferry tickets via BatamFast months in advance so when we reached Vivo, we had breakfast and simply waited...... at the wrong queue. hahaha Luckily we realized it on time but by that time, we were the last group to board even though we were 1-2 hours early. We didn't even had seats and kinda wanted to submit to just standing until one of the crew spread cushioned seat and we had a window view with seats where we can stretch our legs.







I had liased with Ngayon Hotel & Mansion for a pick up so it would be less stressful for us. Just alight and straight away to the hotel. We settled down for a while before headed to the nearby Nagoya Hill Shopping Mall for lunch before our massages at Spa Secret.









Since there was a delay upon arrival at Batam (mostly at the immigration centre), we didn't have much time to jalan-jalan. The mall has 2 areas, outer mall where people can smoke (yucks) and the inner mall where smoking is not allowed and the air-conditioning was cooler.







After our quick lunch at A&W, we crossed the street to Spa Secret. Thanks to Fizah for her suggestions of hotel, mall and massage parlor. hehe I was nervous lah because I don't like the idea of a stranger touching me while half-naked but after our massage at Cambodia (although I get to keep my bra), I was willing to go for it. Plus, I wanted to be with Jhon while he gets a massage.

Our full body massage was wonderful. It made our muscles relaxed. It could've been better if I didn't feel so exposed with my boobs out for the ladies to see and the masseuse to massage. haha As for Jhon, a more focused massage would be helpful.





Up next was our head and feet massages. I was so in loved with the head massages. The guys put a cooling and minty concoction on our scalp and hair while they massaged. I tell you, DAMN SYIOK! (Not only that, even after our hair was washed, the tingling feeling lingers) After the head massage, they moved on with our feet as our head was marinated. Unfortunately, only male masseuses for the head and feet massages so if you are uncomfortable, you have to give it a miss.

The feet/calves massages were okay lah. You know, they tend to do pressure point that hurt but you know it's good for you? It was a weird experience for me. The fact that it was a man handling my feet and that it was a roller coaster of tickles, pain and comfort for me. For Jhon, it was an unexpected delight for him. He never had his feet and calves massaged that way before so he was quite hyped about it.





After we got our hair washed, we still got treated with a quick shoulder massage. We got our hair blow dried. Just a heads up for the ladies, don't expect a blow out but they do provide hair styling services at a separate cost.

After our bodies felt all jiggly and refreshed, we crossed the road back to Nagoya Hill Shopping Mall for jalan-jalan and dinner. We bought a few stuff there, specifically, Jhon. There was a sale going on while we were there so Jhon managed to get an Adidas shoe for half it's price.





Eventually, we went back to the hotel, had our long deep sleep until the next morning.

For the first time in our holiday experiences, we woke up late for breakfast and it was the worst thing because buffet was almost empty and there weren't any ample seats to occupy. We ate what we could and spent the rest of the morning on our beds until check out time.

Since our ride home was at 4+pm we managed to jalan-jalan at Mega Mall Batam Centre which was literally opposite Batam Centre, the place we will be departing from. We ate 2 Roti O each and played at the arcade.



Before we knew it, it was time to check in and prepare for departure. This time, we were slightly wiser and tried to learn the kiasu ferry ways and try to adapt. We got great seats which in turned gave me great going home shots for the vlog.





Overall, we had a wonderful time. The spa was satisfying, the food was pretty good and albeit some mishaps here and there mostly due to our inexperience, it was an interesting mini adventure. We would definitely go again!



   

Dealing with the Baby Questions

"When are you going to get married?"
"Are you pregnant already?"
"When will he/she get a new brother or sister?"

Ah... these are just a few of the usual life questions everyone will be asked. It's almost like a rite of passage.

I had handled the getting married question very well and never even once let it bothered me. My answers were always that I wanted to 'enjoy' or relax first. It was my honest answer and the fact people asked me, I was not peeved at all. In my mind, they are simply asking and judging or not, I didn't care because such decisions most likely would directly effect my life, not theirs.

Now that I'm married, here come the slew of questions on whether there is a bun in the oven.

[The answer is no by the way]

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There are a few ways to go about this and let's go through them.

🚼 Being funny or light-hearted

Hari Raya was about 2 months after our wedding so I was ready for the questions. I was so ready that I posted this on Facebook.


It did helped and only one Auntie had actually asked. haha

🚼 Being Mysterious

You can play with the person's mind by answering "Maybe?" or "Don't know?", grin and walk away. We can learn a lot in the animal kingdom and I find the confuse-the-predator-and-run method helps.

🚼 Seek Back Up

Most of the time, Mak is nearby when Jhon and I are served with such questions so after we gave our short answers, Mak would quipped saying "Aiyah... let them enjoy their married life first and their time will come". All we need to do was nod and smile.

🚼 Straight to the Point (Direct)

It's either you are pregnant or not right? Then just answer yes or no. Don't forget a smile though. We don't want to be rude, don't we?

🚼 Straight to the Point (PR style)

Say in the lines of
"We are trying (or not) but you know what? You will be the first few to know when we are"

🚼 Straight to the Point (Open Book)

Obviously, this only apply to who you are speaking to. If you are close and trust a relative or a friend, just share your situation. Of course, there is such thing as TMI unless your relationship is base on that but there's nothing wrong expressing your situation. You will never know, you may receive helpful tips if you are trying for a baby.

🚼 Change the Subject

This is best for those nosy people. Just shrug and change the subject to what is relevant or a topic that the person might be interested with like how Trump is president. Hah!

No matter that technique you use on how to deal with baby bump questions, the important thing is that you and your spouse is on the same page. Never let others ruin your cool composure. Yes, when questions are persistent, especially from the same person, it can be perpetually annoying. All you need to remember is that most of the time, these questions are coming from a place of love and they simply can't wait to see your potential bundle of joy.

I have no issue dealing with such questions but it does hit the soft spot when I said I'm not pregnant, they would give a sympathetic look. Even though we are not exactly trying, it made me feel like they are implying "Oh, sorry you failed" Imagined getting that face when a couple has been trying all their might. It must be tough.

No matter what, where you are trying or not, trudge on. Don't let questions ruin your day.
Everything happens for a reason and enjoy every moment.


   

Birthday by the Pool + Vlog

Hello, readers! I know it seems that I have been slacking with my posts but reassured, I am still updating it's just that I'm either busy, got myself feeling sickly or just no mood.

Anyways, in early October, Kak Yana hosted an advanced birthday party for Shibly but since there were plenty of October babies within her family/friends, she decided to cramp it all together. I'm not going to complain because who can say no to BBQ food? If there were no additional guests, I would've joined the kids into the pool too.

We had something similar for Syihab's birthday but we started quite late in the evening. It felt so rushed.

Nothing much to write so here comes the photo vomit!











A good amount of the vlog footage was from the kids. Especially from Abg Farkhan's kids.











































Thanks again to Abg and Kak Yana for the lovely party. We had fun eating. hehe Sorry if the photos were less than ideal because for the first time, I had to be the camerawoman and videographer at the same time.

   

Cambodia, Day 6: Heading home

Just in case you missed:
Cambodia Day 1: Siem Reap (Tonie Sap Lake)
Cambodia Day 2.1 & Day 2.2: Siem Reap (Temple Hopping)
Cambodia Day 3: Phnom Penh (The Royal Palace & Siver Pagoda)
Cambodia, Day 4: Sihanoukville (Cambodia's Beach Getaway)
Cambodia, Day 5: Sihanoukville (The Beach Escape)

There were no photos or videos taken on this day. We just had breakfast, checked out and waited for Mr Phat Sok, a driver that we personally hired before coming to Cambodia. As I mentioned in the previous post, our main itinerary was only 4 Days long but we wanted to extend it an extra day.

Because of this, we extended and moved to a chalet and got ourselves a driver to send us to Phnom Penh airport. To be honest, I was a little stressed while outsourcing a driver. Majority of them would cost us 200USD so I was so happy to find Mr Phat Sok's website, cambodiataxidriver.com. I know right? the website address is so direct and his charged us only 65USD for a car which includes petrol and such.

I highly recommend Mr Phat Sok for anyone who needs a driver in Cambodia. He is friendly, nice and an expert driver. He also provide tour services besides airport transfers using motorbikes, tuk-tuk, cars, vans and even buses.

Anyways, the route to Phnom Penh airport was pretty similar to our journey on Day 3, only reversed with the same pit stops. The only difference was I took a nap half of the journey. Have you ever had the feeling of being active amidst of things but it's when you are going home then you truly feel how tired your are? Well, that's me all the time.

Our flight was at 3:15pm and it was all smooth sailing.

Knowing that Cambodia is one of the most uncommon honeymoon destinations, we had no regrets whatsoever. Perhaps it was not number 1 on our preferred list but it has always been in our travelling list. We got a taste of the local life, learn their culture & religion, see their beautiful architecture and not to mention their under rated beaches.

It took me 6 months to officially finish this series and I just can't wait to travel again with Jhon. We both had wonderful time and glad to know that we can go anywhere and deal with anything as long as we are together.



For those who have been following us with our trip via reading and/or watching our vlogs, I hope you enjoyed taking a peek.



   

Cambodia, Day 5: Sihanoukville (The Beach Escape) + Vlog

Just in case you missed:
Cambodia Day 1: Siem Reap (Tonie Sap Lake)
Cambodia Day 2.1 & Day 2.2: Siem Reap (Temple Hopping)
Cambodia Day 3: Phnom Penh (The Royal Palace & Siver Pagoda)
Cambodia, Day 4: Sihanoukville (Cambodia's Beach Getaway)

Day 5 was actually out of our main itinerary. We wanted a free and easy day before we head back to reality. You know, just truly spending quality time with each other after all that boat riding, temple climbing, royal palace visiting and all.

Since it's out of the itinerary, we had book an extra day but instead of staying in Sokha Beach Resort, we requested to move to Moha Mohari Chalet which was the best decision we ever made. We were given an early check out at noon so we had our breakfast and checked out the beach nearby.



Here's my step sexy silhouette but failed. haha













Before we knew it, we were on a cart to be sent all the way to the end of the resort.
Unfortunately, (you will see in the vlog) since it was low tide and the fact it was drought period, the chalet was not as eye catching because there was no water especially at the back area. The concept were chalets on stilts surrounded by water. Fortunately, our chalet was nearest to the beach so we still managed to experience as it was intended.



Inside, it looked wonderful as promised. Item in my bucket list was ticked off because I had always wanted to stay in such a room. It definitely had the honeymoon vibes for sure. Canopy bed smack in the middle, small kitchen and dining area, huge wardrobe which we only used 1/4 of it. Not to mention an open concept bathroom with a Jacuzzi at the balcony. We figured we would use the Jacuzzi at night but it was so dark at the beach area and since I'm absolutely terrified of the dark, that didn't happen. haha











It was definitely one of our favorite days (and vlog) because we were truly relaxed and feeling lovey-dovey. We did nothing but just enjoy the wind, the sand and the sea. We didn't go out for lunch and dinner and just ordered in. We had the entire beach all to ourselves except until 5pm when locals come in but they were so far away anyways so it didn't change anything.

Heads up, there are a lot of scenery pictures up ahead. Especially with the beautiful sunset, we can't resist and keep on snapping. Looking through the photos, I can truly say that Cambodia beaches are underrated compared to other Asian countries. No regrets in insisting that we visited their beaches.























It was a perfect way to end our trip. It was the best trip we ever had thus far even though it was unconventional compared to an Europe trip or a Bali trip. It had the right amount of adventure, culture and relaxation.

The next day, would be officially our last day in Cambodia as we wake up to head home.

Check out my vlog of that day.