Chunky cuts of french toast garnished with mixed berry compote fresh off the stove, sprinkled with some powdered sugar and mint leaves. If it wasn’t enough, it came with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. This brunch-dessert is one of the limited items of the brunch menu at Open Door Policy. Not sure how it tasted but it was presented pretty well and my friend enjoyed every bite of it. Alas the quality of service at this restaurant was dismal and the seating was horribly cramped. My friend and I were seated at a table the size of a regular classroom desk. Yes, those desk we had to use back in secondary school but this came with a smooth copper finishing. Same goes for those retro school chairs. Imagine the delight of dining under what felt like 18ºC air-conditioning and sitting on chilly chairs… It didn’t take too long for me to start sneezing. The worst bit was that the space between my seat and the next one behind was just millimeters apart. There was simply not enough room for me to get in and out, without causing disturbance and discomfort for the diner behind me. The decor of the restaurant does remind of the many cafes in East Village and Upper East Side, which was the primary reason why I decided to check out the place. However when it came right down to the quality of the table service, you definitely know for sure you’re in Singapore.
That’s a one-shot cold drip coffee from Drips Bakery Cafe served in a minimalist Bodum Pavina double-wall glass. Apparently this is the cafe’s house special. The drink sure seems pretty with the sun shining down from the skylight, creating that half under shade sunlight look. Alas it’s such a tiny cup my friend sipped her drink like she was sipping whiskey on the rocks. Yup that was some fancy schmanzy coffee, costing my friend a pretty penny. It’s a cold hard drink for a latte lover, not something I’d like to try.
George Segal’s Cinema (1963) is one of the more prominent pop art sculptures on display at Albright Knox Art Gallery. The last time I was at AK, I only had my iPhone with me and I snapped a photo of this sculpture too, alongside the other pop art paintings near it. AK has a huge collection of artworks from many prominent artists: Gauguin, Kahlo, Lichtenstein, Monet, Mondrian, Picasso, Pollock, van Gogh, Warhol, etc. But my recent visit to AK has left me feeling the collection seems to have shrank in size. Are some of the artworks under restoration or on loan to other galleries, or maybe they’ve sold some of these works again? God knows, but I do hope the missing art pieces are either on loan or under restoration.
There’s nothing not to like about the ornate and organic details on the terra-cotta facade of Guaranty Building. Does makes you wonder why office buildings aren’t build this way anymore. The Guaranty Building was one of the most advanced high-rise office building in Buffalo’s heyday in the late 1890s. It was designed by famous American architect Louis Sullivan, who’s known as the father of skyscrapers and mentor of Frank Lloyd Wright.
I’ve passed by this building countless times from the distance whenever I rode the train to downtown, but it just didn’t stick in my mind. I was first introduced to it when I crashed a schoolmate’s town planning class tour of downtown. If I didn’t remember wrongly (since happened roughly 3 years ago), this 13-storey building was considered a skyscraper back in the good ole’ days. I’ve to admit I’ve not read up much about Sullivan, but I did read up on Wright’s works. That was precisely the reason why I was determined to visit Wright’s Martin House Complex during my return to Buffalo. I’m thankful that I was reintroduced to the Guaranty Building when I met up with my photography professor. The building is a reminder that Buffalo needs to see better days and get back into the game… Those days are coming pretty soon, fingers crossed.
Double rainbow spotted this time! Maid of the Mist is the definite experience for tourists visiting Niagara Falls. Although the ferry operates on both the American and Canadian side, I personally felt the Canadian ride brought me closer to the Falls. It’s a great feeling having a high pressured face wash. Alas the sediments the water carries reminds me of the ghastly possibility I’ve been sprayed with a mix of poop and dead matter.
Makes me wonder why guns today aren’t as ornate as they were 2 centuries ago. This is a Colt Third Model Dragoon Percussion Revolver I spotted at the MET. I think I was at the Arms and Armor section of the museum when I spotted this beauty. There’s a lot of craftsmanship and effort put into creating this revolver, making it more of an art-piece than a weapon.
Tulipmania at Gardens by the Bay was a freaking disappointment. There wasn’t anything much about them that inspired me. I was more excited when I saw fields of tulips in the Netherlands many years back. In fact this brings me back to the point that Gardens by the Bay has been a consistent disappointment to me. I’m not certain if my disappointment with the attraction draws from the comparison of the many gardens and glasshouses I’ve visited around the world. It’s not the size of the space that matters, rather it’s more of the variety it offers. The Flower Dome contains more non-flowering plants. I wished it houses a collection of local and regional flowers and plants. Yes, I see the hibiscuses, but… Surely there’s more than that in Asia!
I found consolation in the roses there. But I was wishing to see more orchids… Maybe I should head to the National Orchid Garden instead.
One of the small caves of five at the Dambulla Cave Temple. Much wear and tear is apparent on the wall paintings and Buddha statues, but the interiors still look amazing. The climb up Dambulla rock may not be that easy, but it’s a well-worth effort.
There was hardly any space left to squeeze past the van at the back alley in Pinnawela, Sri Lanka. Honestly I wasn’t expecting any back alley traffic. It was after all a quiet part of day in the village. Looks like any road’s a road here. Nice to see a Datsun Vanette from the 80s moving on the road. I highly doubt there’s any of this model left in Singapore. Probably is the case.
A Buddhist devotee prays in front of a granite carving of the Meditating Buddha at the Gal Vihara in the ruins of the ancient city of Polonnaruwa. The carving is one of four depictions of Buddha sculpted out from a single giant granite rock. This has got to be one of the most amazing rock sculptures I’ve ever come across. Be it the size (the fact that all these were carved from one single granite rock) and the attention to details on the carvings, they are mostly well preserved. This is the largest rock temple at Polonnaruwa. The scale of the carvings is just magnificent. I’ve no idea how the sculptors did their work, but it sure speaks volume on the accomplishment of the island’s rock carving scene.