Wednesday, April 30, 2008

olivia flips over


olivia turned 5 months a few days ago

for the past couple weeks now, she has been able to flip over turning herself to her belly

here's a video taken last week...



also, here are the most recent photos of olivia which were taken this past weekend by our good friend mj, the bushman...

olivia @ 5 months

olivia @ 5 months

great photos! we love them so much!

in fact, i have the first one as my wallpaper now

thanks mj!

-->> read rest of the post...

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

dusk over santiago


before i flew out to santiago, i wrote an email to our host there asking about the weather. the answer i got from him was "i promise you sunshine everyday you are here". he was right too. it was sunny and beautiful everyday we were there. i later found out he was able to predict and promise such nice weather because it has not rained in santiago since july of last year. yeah! almost an entire year without rain!

the combination of sunny weather with the high mountains surrounding the city, plus some real cool cloud formations resulted in really beautiful and amazing sundowns. these photos don't really do justice of how amazing it looked in person, but here's hoping you get an idea...

santiago dusk

santiago dusk

santiago dusk

-->> read rest of the post...

Friday, April 25, 2008

santiago walkabout - part 1


we did have a couple days where we had some free time during our recent business trip to santiago, chile. one was the day we arrived, which was at 6am on a sunday so obviously we didn't have to work and the other was the day we were leaving. on the day we were leaving, our flight out of santiago was at 8pm and since we had to check out of the hotel by 12pm noon we had some time to kill. we took advantage of both days where we had some free time and walked around town a little bit. glad we got some free time to do that because santiago is just a beautiful city (or maybe i've just been living in taipei county too long). i will post photos from the day we left in another post, in the meantime here are photos from the day we arrived...

santiago, chile
this is the street just outside our hotel, which was situated in an upper class suburb. within a few blocks, we saw a few embassies including that of our beloved human-rights-violating, poisonous-toy-making friends across the strait. most of the streets around this area looked like this, which reminded me a lot of west side vancouver, which is also an upper class neighbourhood. just a beautiful and easy-going area.

santiago, chile
the sidewalk. would you look at that??? not a scooter in sight!!!

so, from near our hotel we took a bus to downtown santiago...

santiago, chile
this is the old central station which has now been turned into a exhibition hall. just one of the many old historical buildings around town.

santiago, chile
central market, which sells mostly seafood with some fruit and veggie stand here and there. also, lots of what looks like really good restaurants with good local cuisines inside. too bad it was really early and we already ate breakfast.

santiago, chile
one of the many seafood stands inside the central market.

santiago, chile
typical building in santiago.

santiago, chile
forgot the name of this area but this is basically the busiest area in downtown santiago equivalent of taipei's ximending or tokyo's shibuya. it was around 8am in the morning when this photo was taken that's why the place looks so dead. we walked by it later on in the afternoon and it was just packed with people. by the way, if you ever go to santiago i highly recommend cafe haiti.

santiago, chile
photo with our host aldo.

santiago, chile
main post office located in plaza de armas.

santiago, chile
also located in the plaza is the national cathedral.

santiago, chile

santiago, chile

santiago, chile

santiago, chile

santiago, chile
the presidential palace.

santiago, chile
the yard inside the presidential palace.

santiago, chile
the museum of visual arts.

santiago, chile
one of many churches and cathedrals around town.

santiago, chile
santa lucia hill. a hill with great views located right in the middle of the city.

santiago, chile
left to right: our host aldo, myself and my colleague berton.

santiago, chile
statue atop the hill.


view from the top of the hill

santiago, chile
the day happened to be the marathon of santiago. with a few thousand participants, it was a pretty big event where they close down some of the main roads in the city. it started pretty early but still back up traffic in certain areas.

santiago, chile
sidewalk along the main street in downtown. look again! not a scooter in sight! i'm loving it!

-->> read rest of the post...

Thursday, April 24, 2008

home sweet home


i finally made it home this past saturday and to my relief olvia seems to still remember me. after being gone for 2 weeks, i was afraid she'd forgotten me and give me a blank stare when i got home but no, she smiled as soon as she saw me. seeing her smile at me lifted my spirit and made forget about all the stress from a less than stellar trip. still, it doesn't mean i will not blog about it.

you all know about the crazy long working hours, the lost luggage and the plane breakdown. well, it didn't stop there. already weary from having to wake up at 3am to arrive at the aiport by 4am for a scheduled 6am take-off, the boarding time was delayed for over an hour. then after boarding, we again sat on the runway for another hour. can we get going already? i just wanna go home! truth be told tho', i don't blame them. i rather have them take all the time in the world to fix it and make sure it's 100% than be up in the air with a faulty plane. as i understand it, they worked through the night to fix the plane and the take-off delay was because they were processing the paperwork, which is understandable. however, why not let us wait at the gate instead of waiting inside the plane? i had it bad too because the old guy next to me must have stayed up all night drinking and ain't bath because he just stank. the stench coming out of this guy was just unbearable. this was one time i wished i'm able to sleep on flights because it was like sitting in a public bathroom for 11 hours. i spent most of the flight with my head leaning as far away as i could and since i had an aisle seat, my head was practically sticking onto the aisle and on top of that i had my jacket pulled over my nose. it was that bad! that was without a doubt one of the longest flights i've ever had and i could not wait to land. from now on, i'm packing a surgical mask in the carry-on.

IT'S GOOD TO BE HOME!

-->> read rest of the post...

Friday, April 18, 2008

stranded in the city of angels


LAX
looking at the famous lax landmark from one of the windows near the boarding gate

hi folks. i'm suppose to be flying somewhere over the pacific ocean right now heading home but instead, i'm here at a hotel near the airport in los angeles. the reason for that is because our airplane (american airlines) brokedown so we won't be able to go until 6 am tomorrow, that is if they get it fixed. they said a part on the generator for one of the left engines needed to be replaced but they don't have any spare parts in stock so we'd have to wait until the new parts arrives. when are they gonna get the new parts? no one was able to give me a straight answer.

the boarding time was delayed a couple hours, then after we boarded what was supposed to be a 15 minute inspection, turned out to be over 3 hours sitting there on the runway. just some irritating stuff. has this been a fascinating trip or what?!?!

at least the hotel is free for the night compliments of the airline and we also got meal coupons worth us$10 for both dinner and lunch. i wanted to take advantage of the situation and go walk around hollywood / beverly hills since i've never been before. however, by the time we settled in, it was started to get dark so i decided to just stay in the hotel because i don't wanna be on the front page of the la times tomorrow.

had to get up at 5:30am to catch the flight out of guadalajara to la so i'm really exhausted and tired now. gonna go catch some shut-eye as we need to be at the airport tomorrow by 4am. take care everyone. hope you are having a better week than me.

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Wednesday, April 16, 2008

hello from guadalajara, mexico


guadalajara, mexico
looking out the window of my hotel room in guadalajara

after what turned out to be a really miserable and rough week in santiago, i'm now in guadalajara, mexico. i arrived a couple days ago with transits through miami and mexico city. a direct flight from santiago to guadalajara should be no more than 8 hours, but with all the transits, it took nearly 20 hours. that's just screwed up! on top of that, the airline lost my luggage! well, i got it back now (thank goodness) but for a day there, i didn't have anything with me. good thing we arrived during the day and there's a shopping mall right across from my hotel where i could buy some underwear and necessities.

i say last week in santiago was really miserable and rough, because of the long hours we were working. everyday it was 6:30am morning call, then we'd stay at the factory until about 10:30pm with a couple nights there being 12:30 midnight (add in a couple hours to get to the hotel and get cleaned up). we were standing and walking around just about the whole time too so my knees, heels and back were just killing me with pain! to make things worse, most days we only had breakfast and lunch... no dinner. talk about being abused! well, i have to give credit to the guys there tho', as they were there side by side with us through it all the whole time.

this has been a real dismal trip so far to say the least. i've just been really exhausted to blog about it all plus my internet connection both at work and in the hotel last week in santiago was shit. i do have pretty good connection here, but as i said i've been really tired and lazy to blog much. a couple more days and i'll be heading home. finally!

-->> read rest of the post...

Monday, April 07, 2008

hello from santiago, chile


santiago, chile
photo courtesy of claudio marcon

after some 36 hours, we finally made it to santiago, chile. i´m here on a business trip with another colleague and will be staying for a week then we´ll be going to guadalajara, mexico for another 5 days.

we got in yesterday at about 6 am, then after checking into the hotel our hosts took us on a tour of santiago. my first impressions of satiago are great. it´s nothing like anything i expected. it´s a beautiful modern city with touches of european flavour and architecture. there were many places that reminded me of vancouver, canada and in fact, it felt like we were walking and driving around in an us city most of the time.

there´s no internet in the room so i´m using the computer at the business centre in the hotel right. i have my notebook with me and altho´the hotel does have wireless, i can´t get it to work. i´ll bring my notebook here later to plug in the internet and see if that works so i can post some pictures i took.

it´s only been a day but i´m really anxious and eager to go home because i really miss olivia and karen. hopefully everything goes well and the trip does not have to be postponed.

-->> read rest of the post...

Thursday, April 03, 2008

olivia @ 4 months


olivia @ 4 months

olivia @ 4 months

olivia @ 4 months

olivia @ 4 months

olivia @ 4 months

olivia @ 4 months

olivia @ 4 months

olivia @ 4 months

olivia @ 4 months

olivia @ 4 months

-->> read rest of the post...