Saturday, September 23, 2017

Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany

Rachel sent me a deal from Singapore Air with return flights to Munich for only 700 SGD earlier in May this year. It was such a good deal that we took it and there we are, 4 months later making our way to Munich, just in time to experience Oktoberfest!

Oktoberfest is a festive season that spans a total of 17/18 days historically (Read more here). The locals are all dressed in traditional Bavarian Costumes (Men in Trachten-Lederhose, Traditional Shirts, Bavarian Haferlshoe and Women in Dirndl) to grace the occasion. The area was huuuugeeee. They had multiple beer tents for adults, and theme park rides for the kids. Well, you get into a tent and you'll be in it for the next 2-3 hours, drinking 1-litre steins of bier with the locals, singing your heart away in their autumn weather.

Our first tent that we picked was Löwenbräu. It was just right, the people and the hype set the perfect stage for this Oktoberfest season. However, do note that most of the seats are pre-reserved, and if the guests arrive you would have to leave.

We arrived Munich on a Sunday, where all shops are closed in Germany but clearly Oktoberfest isn't. We headed straight there after dropping our luggages off in the airbnb apartment at 12 in the noon. We were already out of seats! So we sat at a reserved area, mindful of the timings that the guests would arrive, ordered 2 steins of Löwenbräu beers and a portion of Pork Knuckle to share. It was just right, kept sufficient space to have 4 litres of beer afterwards. It wasn't exactly the best experience to finish our food and beer as fast as we can, but the crowd and the energy was amazing.

Just a table of men having too much beer, thinking if they should order more :P

We headed back out after the first tent to have some fresh air and took some photos along the carnival streets. These random locals from everywhere jumps in and takes a photo together with us! It was fun, especially after 2 litres of beer. The pictures below says it all.

All wasn't over. We went into the next tent for Paulaner beer and the party continues. We went on from noon till 5pm when they had a change of tables for the next reservation, drank with locals, tried standing on the benches, people-watched and soaked in the immense energy and atmosphere the people had.

2 more steins later led to the carnival rides (which we initially agreed not to get on). I guess on a Sunday where everywhere else was closed, we went home happy at 7.30pm in the evening. We had an early night and an early morning the next day.

How do you get to Oktoberfest? Subway station: Exit at Theresienwiese Station (U4, U5 lines) The entrance to Oktoberfest is totally free (This is without any reservations of course)! You'll probably see it, when all the locals start walking in the same direction, you know the safest way is to follow! Have fun drinking!

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Bangkok in 2017

What is a year without heading to Bangkok? 6 months apart since the last trip in December 2016, nothing has changed. The only thing that might have changed would be the itinerary - But the people and places stayed the same, and the memories got even bolder.

Where do I start? My sister and I decided on a really impromptu trip to Bangkok just 2 days prior to our flight. It wasn't exactly the cheapest vacation (since it also spans across the Public Holiday in June), we still decided to go anyway. We decided to stay away from Pratunam for a change, and resided in Thong Lor. The last accommodation that our friends and I stayed in was in Asok, getting a little further down the BTS line! But like all places, everything is walkable, it just depends if you'd like to (or not). So the previous trip, I challenged myself and walked from our apartment in Asok to J Avenue. I remembered the shops along the roads and the experiences I had, all in a span of 3 hours for a return journey. Nothing a Health Land massage can't cure :P

In essence, Thong Lor is awesome. You are constantly surrounded by cafes and bars and the best hide-out (The Commons), which has been getting quite a bit of hype these 2 years since it has been built. No regrets though, except for the fact that sometimes, most of our activities will still revolve around Siam.

Just a super chill area in our residence (where I spend most of my time watching TV and sometimes, work off the coffee-table with beer and snacks) mmm...

We arrived on a Sunday morning, so we dropped our bags and headed to Chatuchak for some therapy. There wasn't much shopping for me, but my sister, there was quite a bit that suits her. I splurged on food, and a top from a mens store. This was how it looked like, and I still love it till date.

And because we stayed a stone-throw away from Myst, we decided to walk there from our residence at night. The last time I visited, I recalled it was along the main road, but it has shifted waaayyy further into the road (I think it's a big no no, a little more inconvenient, but they still get the crowd anyways). We ordered their funky signature cocktails, and I really wanted the rainbow shots like the last we did in 2015, but nothing's quite the same anymore.

Myst, Thong Lor 10
Address: 185 Soi Ekkamai 5, Khwaeng Khlong Tan Nuea, Khet Watthana, Krung Thep Maha Nakhon 10110, Thailand
Opening Hours: 6PM–2AM
Phone: +66 80 770 9800

On that very night, we saw sunset from our rooftop. It looked something like this.

Since it was my sister's second trip to Bangkok, I decided to bring her to another outlet of Roast. The one we usually frequent to would be in Thong Lor and Seen Space, but this time, I'd like to bring her to my old office at Emquartier -- So we dined there. I loved that place. I've harboured enough memories to miss it that much.

We ordered bacon aglio alio pasta, their famous pulled pork burger and a strawberry milkshake. Our lunch was the bomb. She left with a happy tummy and I am happy.

On another occasion, my sister wanted to eat some Tom Yam Mookata (or something along the lines of being spicy). I brought her to this place which was also pretty hyped - SanSab Bangkok, located on Level 4 at Siam Paragon. We ordered the Tom Yum UFO Mookata Hotpot, with cheese, egg and corn. We were seated comfortably, and no strong smelling of the traditional mookata. All is good.

That day, we shopped around at Siam and I got my Converse army shoes at only 30 SGD. They were having mid-year sale, 50% off some classic designs and it was amazing because there was my size left! We went to a few other converse stores around the area including Siam Discovery to look for one in Justin's size, but to no avail. 50% so must hoot! Ha ha ha

We decided to have a break at Groove, Central World at a Japanese restaurant / bar. We settled for desserts and beer (because 1 for 1 and happy hour). The next would be Wine, I Love You. There will always be space for desserts, no? Yum!

We taxi-ed back to The Commons, at Thong Lor to have dinner with Kwan! The peak hour traffic in Bangkok is crazy, and staying around the city area does not exactly help, since their roads leading up to the expressways are always congested... Not to mention that they have to make an additional distance before u-turning back to Sukhumvit Soi 55.

We had dinner, desserts like churros with ice-cream (my sister had her cravings and it was super yummy btw) and definitely my brew dog fix! It's an IPA that used to be served in Harry's, but they took it off the menu since. Introduced my sister to Kwan, meeting my sister from another mother in Thailand, and I really really treasure this LDR as much. Thank you for always being there for me, together and apart!

Ending it off with sunset in Thong Lor.

Bangkok, you stand between food, coffee and shopping for me. Till next time, for the better places!

You may find all the related Bangkok posts here:
2016: Banyan Tree Hotel Bangkok with The Entertainer App 1 for 1
2015: Best of Bangkok in 2015
2014: Talad Rot Fai Train Market, Asiatique Bangkok
2014: A trip to Bangkok, Thailand
2014: The surface of Bangkok

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Sony A5000 with 35mm f1.8 Lens

New lens added to the Sony A5000, one for the road! There is no regret on this lens thus far, it's been almost a month since I last bought it. A little nice complement to the lightest interchangeable lens camera that I own, and on days where I really do not feel like lugging the Nikon D80 with 30mm f1.4 lens. Most importantly, I got it at a PWP steal from Sony Singapore! Luvvit.

Let's let the pictures speak for themselves shall we?

Image from Google Images