22 April 2011


I am at the point where I can almost tell you what day it is, but don't even think about asking me the date. I haven't known the actual date since we landed on April 1 and it is driving me crazy. I feel like I don't know what is going on and I cannot picture what is happening when. To add more confusion, I have to keep reminding myself that I am on a different schedule than everyone else I know. When I wake up in the mornings, everyone else is a day behind. When I speak with anyone in the States, someone on one end of the conversation is just waking up and someone on the other end is getting ready for bed every time. When I want to speak with someone in the afternoon, most of my friends are in bed. Luckily, I have two friends who are on the Asian schedule and always keep me entertained - Tran-Lam and Fu. I am not sure when they sleep, but I like having someone to talk to during my day.

Paul and I have been roughing it for a little while. We were without Internet for about three days, we are still without a television and I have been without a cell phone since about March 25. We did not have a refrigerator for three days, we were without a washer and dryer for six days, continue to be without a microwave and a toaster, and we will forever be without a dish washer or a garbage disposal. Yet somehow we survive. 

Fortunately, we are one of the few families in Singapore to own an oven. Unfortunately, I hate that oven and want to throw it out the window from the top floor, go down to the ground level, pick up all the pieces and then drop it from the top floor again. I am pretty sure the oven is broken, but we are without a manual and the manufacturer's website does not offer one to download, so I can't be sure. I made a cake this week - OK I attempted to make a cake this week. I poured the batter into my one and only baking dish and set the oven to the only setting that I know works. The outside quickly firmed up but the inside was obviously not done, so I kept checking it every five minutes or so. At one point, I thought the cake looked done so I stuck a knife down into the center of the cake to test the consistency. The first test came out fine, but the second knife test came out with a little goo. I decided there was not enough goo for concern, so I flipped the cake onto a cooling rack so that I could use the baking pan for the rest of the batter. 

Upon flipping, I noticed a little something on the counter...Some chocolate cake batter began seeping out the knife holes from my tests and immediately went all over the counter. When I went to bring the baking pan back up, the top half of the cake flipped out of the pan, leaving the bottom half in the pan and cake batter pouring out all over the counter. I can't say that I was frustrated because I have come to hate my oven after several failed baking attempts. I ultimately knew this would happen, or the cake would burn or something. So I decided to rename the cake as my chocolate lava cake and dumped the chunks and the gooey cake batter still in the pan into one of my mixing bowls. I had some of this lava cake after dinner tonight and it was great. If I had a microwave, I would put a little bit onto a plate tomorrow and heat some up for an afternoon snack, but alas, I am without a microwave.

Paul left me yesterday for a three-day trip to Indonesia, so I have the house and a list of To Dos all to myself. I realized after two days on my own that not having Paul here is different than it was in the States. Back in the U.S., work dominated my life so it's not like I was sitting around all day wondering what to do next. I worked 12 to 15 hours and would come home, make myself dinner and go to bed. Now, I wake up and wonder what I should do by myself. Part of me does not want to go exploring because I know Paul would like to do these things or see the places as well. Luckily, I have a massive To Do list to keep me occupied this week. But, until we receive visa information, I am on a limited budget. That's right, we're still waiting...

Amazingly, I have accomplished more in two days than I believe I had in the year and a halfish I lived in Columbus. Running errands in record time, figuring out how to set up Internet in our new place, sweeping and mopping floors, rearranging furniture six times because it never looks right the first two, baking two loaves of bread, baking a cake (sort of) because I need chocolate, cleaning the kitchen after all of my baking and dinner making and washing and drying four loads of laundry because we finally got a washer and dryer yesterday. Before Paul left, he decided that he liked it better when I was working and taking BlackBerry calls and e-mails. I told him I liked it better when he was mopping floors, so I think we have a deal. 

Today while cleaning, I had a chance to catch up on some American TV through our Slingbox. This device is hooked up to Paul's parents' cable at their home in Ohio and allows us to tap into the cable box via the Internet. I tapped in today and watched one new and some old NY Housewives and I caught an episode of Rosie Pope's new show. I have to say, I rolled my eyes and wanted to vomit in my mouth when I heard about her reality show assisting Manhattan's millionaire moms to be. After watching today (remember this is the middle of the night for America and early afternoon for me), I seem to like Mrs. Pope. She has balls. I never would have imagined that the soft, refined woman I had seen on an episode of Bethenny Frankel's show last season would be the type to walk into a woman's house and call her out like she did on the episode I watched today. She was supporting a woman in her last month of pregnancy who had recently been diagnosed with gestational diabetes because the formerly-100-pound woman gained 80 pounds during her pregnancy (God help me when I get pregnant). Watching Rosie call the woman out for overeating and throwing away all of the junk in her kitchen brought back horrifying memories of my gym experience yesterday. 

Paul and I have decided to join a gym since we both have time to work out and since our condo came sans gym in addition to sans appliances. I visited one place yesterday and during the tour, they had me stand on two machines. The machines then printed out a little report that told me just how out of shape I am. I was fine knowing that I need to tone up a little to get into the shape I was in last year and knowing that I would like to improve my stamina. Between the little piece of paper boasting my body fat percentage and Rosie Pope's kitchen remodeling exercise, I could only think of one thing - cake. I don't know what it is, but watching anything about losing weight just makes me want to eat. My college roommates and I used to pig out while watching Biggest Loser when it first aired because watching people work out that hard just made us hungry. Good to see I haven't changed. 

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