Sunday, May 17, 2015

Norway - Nights out

Continuation from my previous post on Norway's fjords!
I was in Stavanger over the weekend, so Vivaleng brought me out!

Got to try this Scandinavian thing called snus, which is basically like a tobacco pouch.
It's banned in the EU, but still very popular in countries like Sweden & Norway.

You stick it under your lip & the tobacco gets absorbed into your bloodstream that way.

In a way it's sort of like smoking & it's no wonder I saw a couple of Scandinavian guys using it on my flight home, since you can't smoke on planes but with snus you get the same sort of effect.

Anyhow you can use it for varying amounts of time, ranging from like, 5 minutes for the first time to 30 minutes or whatever for regular users. It stains your teeth pretty yellow though, noticed that among the male friends Vivaleng introduced me to.


So I stuck it under my lip & didn't feel anything for quite a bit so I just left it there for 20 minutes or something & then the effect hit me suddenly & I wound up vomitting in the toilet lol.

It's nothing like the alcohol sort of nausea if that's what you're thinking. 
You're perfectly lucid & sober. Just felt sick because it was too long for my first time!


#wildchild
And also, #thepictureyoutakebeforeyouloseyourphone
Okay she didn't lose her phone but it looks like a very possible scenario.





2012 >> fresh-faced 22 year old.

What hasn't changed:
Still doing the twist in pictures (hello, I'm half Asian)
Still have bangs (I demand that bangs be allowed in passport pictures)
Still doing the semi-duck face pout in pictures

In fact, even my makeup is still the same.
I think since I began using eyeliner (15 years old if I recall correctly) my makeup hasn't changed. Still concealer, eyeliner & lipstick. Eyeshadow & blush on more dressy occasions.

Alright, this means I'm FINALLY done with my 2012 winter Europe holiday posts!
And...
Can now move on to backdated 2013 posts LOL.



Friday, May 01, 2015

Norway - Fjords

OMG GUESS WHAT I ACTUALLY EDITED THESE PICTURES BUT FORGOT ABOUT THEM.

MUST.
BLOG.

When I look at the massive amount of unedited, unseen pictures accumulating in my iPhotos... I... am super discouraged. LOL. And then I switch tabs to look at cat pictures on Facebook instead.

And don't say no need to edit...
Even resizing is editing!

Plus now virtually every single blogger is armed with a professional camera AND A PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHER (no, seriously, when did this become a thing? wtf).

Note that these pictures below are still taken with my 2012 semipro.
Possibly why the quality is shit. Haha.

Say hi to Vivaleng.

Whom I actually hadn't met before. LOL.

Some of you might remember how we met... Online. I know when you say it like that it sounds like we were both trawling some lesbian dating site or something. But no, she was one of my blog readers haha. Does that mean I can call her my fan? Hahahaha. #notshy

So anyhow, she used to comment on my Formspring - one of the few non-anonymous ones, so I took note. I do start to remember names of people that reply to me a lot, so I noticed hers.

She came to Singapore one time; we didn't meet up or anything. She simply came to say hi at a flea market I was at. In fact that was all, we said hi then that was pretty much it as it was really crowded.

Also, her voice reminded me SO much of a friend I used to be close to (and the friendship didn't end well) so I was really taken aback in a sorta unpleasant way.

And basically that was that. A 5-second exchange & a few comments here there online.


Fast forward half a year or whatever, I'm planning my December 2012 winter holiday to Europe.
I realise I have a few days with nothing planned.

I decide to self-invite myself over to her town in Norway, Stavanger. LOL.

It was really abrupt. I basically searched her on Facebook, added her as a friend (at least I did that haha) & sent her a message inviting myself over hahahahaha.

So after spending Christmas with my family in Paris, I flew up to Stavanger for 3 days!

After being in Europe for 3 weeks I was terribly sick of being cold all the time.

People in Singapore complain a lot about the weather but frankly I love it.
I don't particularly enjoy the sun (ok I don't like the sun at all) but I much prefer warmth.

Notice the heart shaped dent in the rock? Vivaleng said couples like to get married here.









Trickling water frozen into ice before it makes it down.






Stavanger's fjords were really pretty, it's just too bad the weather was quite gloomy (which apparently seems to be the case for many months out of the year). Norway is probably more about nature than anything else (from a tourist's point of view) as their city centre is pretty small & shopping/city life is... haha. Not to mention expensive. Just a reminder: Norway & Singapore both have a population of 5 million. Except that Norway is a zillion times bigger. You can actually SEE it on the world map. That should give you an idea of the stark contrast between the two.

Stavanger only had a population of 200, 000 but it's the 3rd largest city of Norway. Never been to Norway's capital though (Oslo, which is much further up north & also colder), so I'm curious to see how a bigger city would be like.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Epi-LASIK (Part 1)

Myopia has been a pretty big part of my life as I've had to wear glasses since I was about 8 years old!

Both my parents have myopia so it was pretty much set in stone that I'd inherit it too & plus I used to read a lot when I was young. Fast forward 17 years, I'm 25 years old (soon!) & my myopia stabilised at ~600 degrees. Most people I know have degrees ranging between 100-400 & only a few of us break that 500 degree barrier. LOL.

If you don't have a high degree like I do, you don't get how it's like to have a person stand in front of you & not be able to make out who it is... It's that bad!

I have worn contact lens on a daily basis since I was 15 years old & anytime I'm not wearing them, I'm in my spectacles. I put them on as soon as I wake up & take them off only right before I sleep. I even wear them into the shower & only take them off when I need to get my face wet!

You can say... I'm pretty handicapped due to my low vision.


Me in 2012!

The only 2 pictures of myself in spectacles that I've ever put on my blog (other than childhood ones).

I've always known I would be going for LASIK. It has always been my plan & a definite eventuality.
As I got older it became a simple matter of when to get round to it...

And that time is now!!!!

I went for a consultation with Clearvision Eye Clinic & LASIK Centre some time back.
Their clinic is very conveniently located in town, just behind Lucky Plaza & next to Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre (where you will also go for some follow-ups with the eye doctor).

I'm sure most of you have heard of LASIK.
However recently there have actually been new procedures that are much, much better than LASIK!
You may have also heard of Epi-LASIK & ReLEx SMILE.

Those 2 are much newer procedures than LASIK & frankly I wouldn't recommend LASIK to anyone.

The procedure I will be going for is Epi-LASIK!
It's a better procedure than LASIK in sooo many ways.


You should set aside about 2-3 hours for your consultation, which will involve checking your cornea thickness, subjective refraction & so on. Your eyes will be dilated beforehand which means your near vision may be affected for a few hours afterwards! However personally I've gone through this eye dilation a few times (for this consultation & other eye checks when I was younger) & I've never had any problems afterwards; my vision was pretty much normal.

And essentially why Epi-LASIK is much better than LASIK:

Epi-LASIK is a non-invasive, surface based procedure, safer procedure that is suitable for almost everyone, even if you have been rejected for LASIK.

LASIK:
- Cornea is cut, flap is lifted up for the laser to remove tissue & reshape the cornea
- Duration: 15-20 mins per eye

Epi-LASIK:
- Topmost surface epithelium cells are removed before a laser reshapes the cornea
- The epithelium cells will self-heal
- Duration: About 5 mins per eye

Individuals with these characteristics below are still able to go for Epi-LASIK!
Myopia: Up to 1200 degrees
Hyperopia: Up to 300 degrees
Astigmatism: Up to 500 degrees

P.S. Both LASIK & ReLEx SMILE can only accept patients with myopia up to 1000 degrees.

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There are a TON of benefits of opting for a flapless & bladeless technique (Epi-LASIK)!

# Cutting a flap in your cornea can result in many complications such as flap wrinkles, infection, flap dislodgement & inflammation.

# You do not need to worry about suffering from long term dry eyes after LASIK as cornea nerves are not cut. Thousands of cornea nerve endings are cut when the cornea flap is created!

# You need not worry about the higher risk of traumatic cornea flap damage when engaging in sports.

And most importantly,

# You want to preserve precious cornea tissue for other possible procedures

This is very important as there is NO improvements or refinements that can be done after LASIK. Furthermore, as we age we may also face problems of "lau hua" (long-sighteness), which can still be corrected after an Epi-LASIK surgery.

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Regarding ReLEx SMILE, it also has similar benefits to Epi-LASIK of being flapless & bladeless.
However, here are some important cons of ReLEx SMILE:
# It can only be done once, any enhancements are only possible using Epi-LASIK
# Still a very new procedure & thus long-term side effects & success rates are yet to be established
# It is more expensive. LOL.

Here are some price comparisons for your perusal:
LASIK - ranges from $2364 (SNEC) to $2888 (Shinagawa)
Epi-LASIK - ranges from $3388 (Clearvision) to $3600 (SNEC)
ReLEx SMILE - ranges from $4376 (SNEC) to $5289 (LASIK Surgery)

SNEC refers to Singapore National Eye Centre by the way!

So as you can see, Clearvision Eye Clinic & LASIK Centre is priced very competitively.
And honestly at $3000+ I think it's a pretty good investment for perfect vision the rest of your life!
If you add up the total cost of contact lens over the years & decades... 
Pretty sure permanent myopia correction is more worthwhile.

You can check out their website below (click image):

Their website is actually crazily informative, covering the procedure of Epi-LASIK as well as FAQs regarding medical leave & even claiming from insurance/Medisave.

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Find out if you're suitable for Epi-LASIK by giving them a call at +65 6100 2020 or email them at doctor@clearvision.com.sg. Website: www.clearvision.com.sg

Clearvision Eye Clinic & LASIK Centre
6 Nutmeg Road
S(228337)

Quote "Sophie Willocq" at the counter to get S$121 off your Epi-LASIK package!

Friday, March 20, 2015

//TWFLP// Coffee Talk

The first blogpost in my series of TWFLP - The Wild Flower Land Project - (a name coined by Yutaki) which consists of Yutaki's & my first photography project together, where we travelled down under to Perth! I've actually been to Perth city many times & in my honest opinion it's quite a quiet town; shops close pretty early & in the evenings the town is really... empty.

However we booked an AirBnB 40 minutes away from Perth city & we loved it! Suburban/countryside Perth is really pretty & picturesque! We rented a car to get around & it was pretty fun. You can actually spot wild kangaroos & on one night I almost hit one that darted out unto the road suddenly O.O Luckily the road was empty & I simply swerved to avoid the bugger lol.


Googled for cafes in Perth & sadly they all close really early! (Neither Yutaki & I are really "day" people... we are night owls) I remember how we arrived at one at 3.45pm & they had already packed up everything because they close at 4pm...

I can't remember the name of the one we finally went to but the food was not bad!





Featuring Barely Naked Skins for customisable skins on both my gadgets above! You can choose to have ANY design printed on sticker sheets, which are easy to apply & easily removable! You can make collages of your favourite pictures, or quotes or what not. I went with geometric & floral prints for mine!

Instagram: @barelynakedskins

Quote "BNYS10" for 10% off when making your order!

And guess what? Aside from gadgets (phone, camera, laptop, tablet...) they also do nails!






Friday, March 13, 2015

Being a tall girl in Singapore...

... You're at the back row of every year's class photo.

... People think you should be good at netball/basketball/sports in general, but erm. You're not.

... You're almost always the one on the chair in Captain's Ball.

... Dresses, and especially rompers, sold by blogshops are too short for you.

... You're considered "big" if you're not a UK6.

... You're the same height as, or taller than the average Singaporean guy.

... In heels you might as well be Hagrid.

... You hunch like Gollum in group photos with other girls.

... Major awkwardness is wearing 4-inch heels and having to bend down to hug someone.

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... You will probably have to get married wearing flats.



... I wear heels about 5 times a year.