Monday, October 4, 2010

Shanghai World Expo

Did you hear about the World Expo in Shanghai, China this summer?

Neither did I. Not until I met one individual who proceeded to inform me that the World Expo is like the Olympics of the commerce world, where countries meet up in the same place once every four years to kind of revel in their own awesomeness. '

If I know of one country very eager to do that, it's China. So it was very fitting that this year's World Expo took place in the most awesome of cities - Shanghai.
As court, we had VIP privileges to the expo which included no lines! We felt so bougie. I took a really cool video of us heading into the China pavilion but my camera was retarded and fast-forwarded everything so just watch it like you're on speed.

The next pavilion we checked out was the US pavilion. No offense, but isn't the building really ugly and corporate looking? So...American. Haha, but in their defense, one of the girls explained to me that it was because the US pavilion was the only one that was privately funded. As in, our government couldn't really provide money to go into this while other countries had that fund. Tough times.
My friend Mario made a cameo in the video for the US pavilion.

Next we headed off to the Coca Cola pavilion. (My sis, Jessica would have been in heaven here).
We were inundated with tons of cool freebies like these cool souvenir tin coke bottles.
And this seemingly normal bottle of Coke...
...which actually, if opened correctly, chemically transforms into pieces of ice-so it's like you're drinking iced coke-in a bottle! Yes, I know. Minds are being blown right now.

All in all, the Coke pavilion was a whole lotta fun. Though the US pavilion was kind of lame, you have to hand it to US commercial products to do good work in entertaining us.

We next headed off to the Information and Communication pavilion where a whole bunch of my friends showed up on the big screen.

There's Jonathan...

...Nebula (playing a mom!)

and Miss Jani as a lead!

We headed home that rainy evening getting a pretty good feel of what the World Expo is all about. Despite it being incredibly good weather (cause it wasn't stifling hot) and we did not have to wait in line, I don't know if I would make a trip to another world expo in the future. If I wanted to wait in long lines and walk to far places to watch stuff, I'd rather check out Disneyland shows.

Heh, like my meh face in this picture?

Saturday, October 2, 2010


Have you ever gone somewhere and just realized you were...home? You feel an immediate sense of belonging, of fitting in, of comfort.

That's kind of like what Shanghai is for me. Having been brought up by my mom's mom, my Abu, I grew up listening to stories of Shanghai and soaking in the customs of the city while I'm at home, whether it's having a constant craving for eating my rice soaked in soup or being accustomed to making every conversation, whether you're talking about the weather or sharing stories about your kids, sound like a shouting match.

By day we did a lot of city sightseeing and checked out the Expo.

By night we partied like a rockstar. Okay, not really but we danced some and sang some and drank some and chatted some.

Out of the court, three of us are Shanghainese. We had oodles of fun practicing our Shanghainese, eating our Shanghainese food and taking our Shanghainese pictures. (Ok, so all asians pose like this)

The city is so pretty we just had to get pretty ourselves and get all Carrie Bradshaw and co.

Even though we actually really look like this most of the time...
Shanghai, I will be back to conquer you! I will!

HK Remnants

Now that I finally got the rest of my China trip pictures from Tom, I can finish my trip updates!

I also ate a lot in Hong Kong.
Nom nom nom. We didn't eat without purpose. Sometimes we dined with famous actresses for press conferences.
The rest of the Chinatown court and I also finished our China trip with a final visit to the Phoenix TV station in Hong Kong where the president of the company graced us with another one of his presence.

We received a tour of the station. Here I am apparently amazed by whatever the host was saying. Good stuff.
Wish Nebula could have finished the trip with us but what an exciting two weeks. Viva la MLAC 2010!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Taking the Leap

"I'm going to jump."

Jessica and Irene stare at me like I'm crazy. Darryl gives me an encouraging look.

"Yea. Darryl and I have decided we are going to bungee jump when we get to Macau."

"What?!" My sister exasperates. Her big eyes get even wider.

"What?!" My cousin questions? Her frown lines growing deeper.

This idea stemmed over a conversation Darryl and I had recently, where we decided that the only logical way for me to get more endorphins would be to do something crazy daring like bungee jumping off of the 233 meters Macau Towers. I had suggested just going for a run but bungee jumping of course just makes much more sense.

"You can't jump." My sister says. "You have to get Mama's permission first."

"I am! I am! Watch me!" I crowed to her.

"We'll see." She says. And then we ferried off to Macau. That night, Darryl, Irene, and Jess wreaked havoc in the Wynn casinos. Irene made off like a bandit with the winnings and Jess and Darryl didn't do as well. I tried to keep up with these gambling fiends but by the time the clock struck three, my eyelids shut down and I yawned my way up to make use of our luxe penthouse suite.

I wave goodnight to my loved ones. "Bye, I'm going to sleep in preparation of jumping off a building tomorrow."

"No you're not, don't be stupid. Mama will kill you." My sister says.

"Not if I'm already dead." I har-harred but then, that's not really funny so we let the joke drop.

You could hardly tell we barely slept.

The next morning, I wake up feeling like I just got mowed over by a truck. Don't get me wrong, the Wynn Penthouse Suite king-sized bedroom is amazing to sleep in but I'm a baby and need a certain amount of hours of sleep a day. So I'm woozy and a little disconnected from the world. Probably not a very good time to bungee jump. Or probably the best time.

"You're not going to do it." Jess says. "I won't let you."

"You can't stop me. I'm bigger than you." I say defiantly.

Bigger but not smarter, my sis was probably thinking.

So we head over to the Macau Towers. As I got to the building, my first thought was, "Shit, it's high."

Splat? I'd rather not think about that.

We buy tickets to visit the top floor and once I get there, I think, "Shit, if anything goes wrong, I'm smacking cement and then getting run over by cars and buses. That's not how I wanted to die."

But I had already said I was going to jump. My pride is not going to let me live this down. No, I must persevere on through.

Putting on a brave face while my heart is trying to pop out of my chest.

So we circle the glass building, each time as I stare at the casinos and traffic lights and trees and people below me, a flash of fear races through my heart. The whole time, my head is battling with my gut. I make a list in my head.

I probably wont get hurt.
I probably won't die.
I will be awesome.
I can post it on my blog.
I can brag to my friends.
I can be "that girl who bungee jumped."
I can feel like flying for four whole seconds!

I might regret it.
I might never get a chance to do something like this again.
I might cower in a cave for the rest of my life afraid to do anything cool or daring or exciting or adventurous forever. FOREVER.
Mama won't kill me.

So, it seems like logically, I should jump. So then why do I feel so scared?

"Why don't we just go to lunch and you can think about this?" My sister says with a smug smirk on her face. This girl knows me too well. She thinks I'm not going to jump. I can't let her win. I'm going to jump.

"Sure." I say, but only because I really was really really hungry.

We go to eat. Darryl seems really calm. His calmness makes me want to jump because it's like, if he's going to do it, I have to do it too right? If he jumps, I jump. What is that saying again how if somebody jumps off a bridge, I have to do it too, right? Oh gosh, I'm really tired. And scared. But excited, right? No, mostly scared. And then I think about my blog. This blog. Man, it'd be really cool to post that I went bungee jumping on my blog. For the sake of my work, my art, alone, I should be jumping, right? I need sleep. Or I need to wake up. You know what will wake me up? If I jumped. Yea, I'll bet that'll wake me up real good.

We finish eating and at this time, I still have not confidently declared my status to jump. My sis and cousin go to the bathroom. They take a long time. "You know they're talking about us, right?" Darryl says.

Yea. I know. Just like my sister knows me, I know her.

Sure enough, they pop out and my cousin says, "Janice. You're taking too long deciding whether to jump or not so I'm going to make the decision for us. You're not going to jump. We're going to get a portuguese egg tart instead."

Every stubborn inch of my body wants to fight back, wants to say, "No way! Let's go! I'm ready! Let's jump!" but instead, I just say, "okay" and walked over to press the elevator button to go down.

Did I feel like a failure? Yes. Did I feel I feel like a wuss? Yep. Did I feel like my actions didn't match my words? Definitely. The old Janice most certainly would have jumped. She was always up for anything and everything, enjoying the here and now and worrying about the consequences later. The old Janice would have wanted to rack up another good story to tell. The old Janice would have looked at the new Janice and been like, "whoa, how boring and safe of you. You are not on my level. I judge you. Judge, judge, judge."

But this new Janice is more careful. This new Janice has learned that racking up good stories is great but following her guts (which was screaming, DON'T JUMP, YOU CRAZY LUNATIC!) is also a good idea. This new Janice is accepting that she probably won't be the most fun, most dynamic, most exciting person all the time and she is okay with that. (As long as she is one for most of the time.) This new Janice knows a thing or two about timing, a thing or two about patience, a thing or two about just letting things go after the moment's passed.

I wish I could tell you that I jumped.

That jumping was a metaphor for me taking the leap into the unknown with my life, just trusting what He has planned for me (which is hopefully a safe landing). But I didn't jump. I still trust that He wanted me to take something away with this (probably to not be a crazy, reckless lunatic) and I don't think this will deter me from taking a leap anywhere else in my life. I think this mostly showed me to distinguish myself from the person I want to be as the person I really am. I see pictures of friends who went skydiving and I think, "I want to do that!" But do I really want to do that or do I want to do that because my friend did it? I think I want to be the girl who bungee jumps but do I really want to bungee jump? Not really, because that day, at that time, I'd rather eat a portuguese egg tart.

Which we did. And then some. Macau and all of its non-casino, Portuguese glory taken by the amazing food blogger and not-so-secret-anymore photographer, Irene Wang.

Thanks Jess and Irene for knowing me so well to push (not really push, more like blow) me away from jumping. Sometimes, I just don't know things for my own good! And Darryl, maybe we will jump together another time- when I'm ready.

Raymond Lam Concert

Look at this stud muffin here. Look at those thick eyebrows, that creamy skin, that sexy stare. What could be better than staring at this glorious creature as he croons and serenades, sweats and gyrates?

Well, it's better when you're very own sister is appearing in his concert!

We checked out the Hong Kong TVB star, Raymond Lam's "Come 2 Me" concert to support Jessica as she debuted as an entertainer for a performance. It was my second night supporting my kin. The first night, I checked it out with my dad and we had some nosebleed seats in the coldest part of the stadium. The second night, my cousin Irene scored up some sweet second row spots.

Before the concert, we had some fun with food...

And some more fun at the local arcade...
Where this cute little girl took home plenty of tickets...playing an old lady game (you know the one where you slide a coin in and you watch more coins waterfall down? That one.)
Then it was time to head into the nearly-packed stadium and support Jessica Jann!
But first, we had to sit through endless bouts of Raymond Lam prancing around and singing while staring at teleprompters. I'm sorry to tell you I am not a big fan of this guy. He kind of oozes douchiness.
Look at that self-righteous smirk.
My favorite part of the night (other than when Jessica appeared on screen, of course) was when Raymond Lam performed with 2004 Miss Hong Kong and actress, Kate Tsui. The girl is hotness. She was so "on" in her dance performance that the camera for the big screen rarely left her face. THAT is what we call stage presence ok, Mr. Smirky Man?
And then Jessica stomped onstage (Actually she was lifted on a bed with four other dancers)
During this sexy song, my sis had to vamp it up. Knowing how UNLIKE that she is in real life, I have to give her props for doing these things without looking uncomfortable or cracking up. 'Cause I know I would! (Well, maybe not if you were paying me and I knew a lot of people were watching.)

Congrats to my sis for her first concert performance! Cheers to many more! (And thanks for the fun times, Irene and Darryl.)