PARKROYAL on Pickering

This was where we had our Anniversary staycation, at PARKROYAL on Pickering! It's conveniently located near Chinatown MRT station, but we still drove there since there's complimentary parking anyway.


While waiting to check-in, we were served icy cold lime juice.


Walkway to the rooms on the 15th floor


Our room with king-size bed


Bathroom with the most-squarish bathtub I ever seen


Toilet and shower area


Complimentary drinking water and toiletries


Nespresso coffee machine and TWG tea bags provided


Complimentary red velvet cake


Orchid Club Lounge on the 16th floor serves afternoon tea from 2pm to 4pm


Coffee, tea or juice?





View from the Orchid Club Lounge on 16th floor. We have the same view from our room which is only one floor below the club.


Outdoor rooftop terraces on 16th floor


Gym on 5th floor


The always-very-crowded infinity swimming pool (also on 5th floor)


The quiet side of the 5th floor



Cabana for chilling out

After exploring the hotel, we decided to get changed and hit the gym. We would love to enjoy a dip in the pool, but it was crowded and all the pool-side loungers were occupied! Then, we showered and head down to the ground floor for dinner at Lime restaurant. Before calling it a day, we went back to the club lounge for another drink and to enjoy the night view of the city.


Enjoying a glass a champagne after breakfast

Champagne breakfast is served in the Orchid Club Lounge from 6:30am to 10:30am. But we chose to dine at the common breakfast area in Lime, where there's definitely a lot more food variety than in the club lounge.


Avengers S.T.A.T.I.O.N. Exhibition

So, I brought my "big boy" KB to the Avengers S.T.A.T.I.O.N. Exhibition in Science Centre Singapore during the December "holiday" (both of us were clearing our annual leave). Since it was still school vacation, the place was crowded as expected. We queued to buy the tickets (brought our ICs to get citizen price), queued to get our tickets scanned and our arms stamped with UV ink, led into a "briefing room" where we waited and watched a short video-clip, then finally allowed into the exhibition hall.


The queue and our tickets


After the staff check our tickets, there's instructions on setting up the app.


The Briefing Room


The first zone - Captain America


Second zone - Hulk



Interactive screens of Dr Banner's vs Hulk's brains


Information boards of Hawkeye and Black Widow


Thor (and his hammer), Loki and the universe


To the left of the picture, are game stations. But we got no patience to wait in the queue.


The different Iron Man suit


Final game before exiting the exhibit. Before entering the game zone, there are staffs stationed outside to help you get your app ready for the game. The teams are randomly assigned by the software.


The game is not difficult, just keep throwing your weapon at the enemies. Before you know it, the game is over (and you won of course).


US Election 2016


[Click on picture to go to BBC website and their live coverage on the election.]

Yesterday, the social media was flooded with posts about the US Election - posts reporting on the vote counting progress, posts reporting the final result and posts about the analysis of the result. Many expressed that they cannot believe the jaw-dropping outcome. Yap, me too. I hardly see any positive comments, except for those that try to make sense of all this by suggesting that the angry working class had voted in hope for a change.

For months, the media featured the outrageous things that he said during his campaigns and portrayed him as a lunatic. I still think he is crazy to be so extreme and demeaning in his speeches. And I don't like the way he said Singapore (and some other countries) are stealing their jobs. Come on, we are all trying to survive as a Nation and it is seriously not very nice to label others as "thieves"!

In the early part of the vote counting, he was already in the lead. Even before the winner was confirm, Canada’s immigration website crashed. It was later suggested that it could purely be coincidental, but well... we'll never know. And now, California wants to leave the US (#Calexit) and they could potentially become the world's sixth-largest economy.

Although his victory caught everyone by surprise, there are people who think that he would actually win this election. One of them is Hollywood director Michael Moore who listed 5 reasons for his prediction in July.


[Click on picture to go to article.]

Now that he is the US president, let's take a look at his to-do list by BBC and by Straits Times, compiled based on his campaign speeches. There seems to be a depression forecast of what is to come in the next 4 years. Looks like this super-power is not going to care about the well-being of the rest of the world. So really, what exactly is the change that the Americans are expecting?


[Click on picture to go to article.]



I must say that I am extremely glad that I am not doing my internship in US in this era. The situation now is just way too unpredictable.

Escher's World of Wonder

There was a period of time when his optical illusion artworks were shared by many on Facebook. Most of us would have been fascinated by his drawings but may not know the artist behind those images. Scroll down below and you would find some familiar art pieces. The man who drew them was Maurits Cornelis Escher (1898 - 1972). To showcase his many amazing creations, ArtScience Museum has put together an exhibition: Journey to Infinity: Escher’s World of Wonder.


Early Works: Art Nouveau and Nature


Significant moments in the life of Escher


Visitors gathering around to admire Escher's early works


A closer look at some of his drawings


Escher's landscape drawings


Lithograph (1931) of Atrani (Coast of Amalfi) - the place he met his wife


Tessellation
Escher made used of repeated geometrical shapes to create tessellation prints.


Regular Division of the Plane with Birds, No. 95 (Watercolour and ink, 1955)


Regular Division of the Plane I (Woodcut, 1957)


Tessellation Puzzle Activity located at the back of the exhibition hall


Metamorphosis
Gradual transformation of tessellation from one shape to another.


A section of Metamorphosis II (Woodcut, 1939 - 1940)


Day and Night (Woodcut, 1938)


Hand with Reflecting Sphere (Lithograph, 1935)
Is he holding the glass sphere with his left hand (foreground) or right hand (reflection)?


Commercial Works
Escher's commissioned artworks include postage stamps, concert programme cover and even a icosahedron tin box.




Exploring the Infinity


"Are you sure that a floor can't also be a ceiling?"

Möbius Strip II (Woodcut, 1963)
The ants can never fall off the paper as they crawl along an infinite loop.


Ascending and Descending (Lithograph, 1960)
People walking in an endless looping stairs, not actually making progress up/down. Perhaps, this is the depressing reality that sometimes life is as such.


Tetrahedral Planetoid (Woodcut, 1954)


Print Gallery. Left: Lithograph (1956). Right: Digital Print (2003)
Escher left it blank in the center of his art piece (left picture).
It took a team of mathematicians to fill in the blank (right picture).


Escher's final piece of artwork - Snakes (Woodcut, 1969)
The art piece starts with small rings in the center, building up to big rings outward, then back to small rings along the circumference. "...earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust..."


Escher Mania


LP record covers


Comics covers