Thursday, October 23, 2014

The Importance of Friends

I am referring to friends the common noun and not Friends the proper noun, but I would like to start this post about the latter, which is Friends my favourite sitcom of all time.



Sometime ago, I read an article about how Friends was originally pitched to NBC.

"It's about sex, love, relationships, careers, a time in your life when everything's possible. And it's about friendship because when you're single and in the city, your friends are your family."

Boom.

This, I realize, is the reason why I love Friends so much. Because I am single and in the city, and my friends have been my family... for a decade now.

I have always known this tidbit since I had an "aha!" moment after reading that article, but this idea reasserted itself lately after I had a conversation with a friend, who has just gone back home recently.

"Gosh I miss you!" she gushed in our chat room one day. "It sucks here because I can't grab a friend to have coffee and just talk nonsense."

As I commiserated with her, we somehow wound up talking about old friends, and got around to one of our closest ones who had fallen off the face of the earth lately, which was totally unexpected of him, who was quite the popular extrovert back in the good old days. They had had a brief reunion when she had a stopover at his city, and I wanted to know how he was.

"He's okay now," she reported. "I think he just got really depressed with what happened then on top of that, all of us leaving. So he felt like what I feel right now, he didn't have a phone-a-friend lifeline."

"Aww poor guy," I said. "That's sad indeed, I can imagine. What do you mean by 'what happened'? His dad?"

"Everything," she replied. "His dad, work, etc. That's why he went home for a while to rest and teach. But based on his story, if we had still been in Manila, he would have had an outlet, even just an all-nighter session with us at the gas station cafe would have done wonders."

"Oh no, so this is our fault?" I groaned, my heart stricken. "Doesn't he have any other friends?"

"He does not seem to have friends like us to whom he can open up everything about life," she surmised. "You know, not just 'friends' friends, but real friends."

"I'm surprised to learn this, I always pegged him to be a friendly guy," I confessed. "Well I hope he finds new real friends, and that you do, too."

"Well I really hope so!" she said. "But people are so busy here."

"Busy compared to here?" I reacted in surprise.

"I mean they have their own lives," she explained. "But it's understandable."

"Yeah, when you left, they moved on with their own lives without you," I sighed. "But is there really no one left?"

"Well there's this one friend. But she's really busy with mommy life."

"Yeah, well, you can't bother parents."

"Yeah... sniff. Oh gosh. Single problems!"


Okay so maybe this post could have been called "single problems." I mean, people whose love lives are not DOA* probably don't appreciate the importance of friends as much as we single folks do. Who knows?

But what I do know for certain is, after talking to my friend, I realized all the more just how lucky I am to have had friends wherever I moved. So even though my job's a joke, I'm broke, my love life's DOA... I feel like I'm always stuck in second gear... and it hasn't been my day, my week, my month, or even my year... friends were there for me, and thus have made life worth living, still.

I have taken this little gift for granted. Now I feel so lucky and utterly grateful.

So if you're reading this and we're friends, THANK YOU!!


*DOA - Dead On Arrival, just in case you didn't know. You're welcome.

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Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Win $200 Cash!

Last night I had a really fun time. Doing what? Exercising! Yeah, that surprised me. I normally hate doing any sort of physical activity (which explains why I gained double digit kilos in the past 3 years or so). But it was fun because I had a physical trainer with a smiley face and who was making me do some interesting exercises. At the end of our session he asked if I was interested in booking more sessions (the 3 I had with him came with joining the gym), and I really wanted to! But it's so expensive! *Sobs*

You know what would be really nice right now? Cold hard cash. I'm sure you agree with me. Well, you can have just that! I've gotten together with some awesome ladies to give you a chance to win $200. All you have to do is enter in the rafflecopter below!

Jackie ~ Our Nashville Life // Kelly ~ Six One Six
Shelly ~ Behind Blue Eyes // Cat ~ Oddly Lovely // Melany ~ Melany's GuyDlines
Desiee ~ Love Desiree // Danielle ~ The Lifestyle Project // Dee~ A Deecoded Life
Kimberly ~ p.s. remember this....// Brainne ~ Being Bracco // Helene ~ Helene in Between



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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

{Foodee} Ricciotti Pizza Pasta Grill @ Riverwalk

One of my favourite Italian restaurants in Singapore just threw an exclusive 10th anniversary media party and I was one of the girls who got invited to go. How lucky am I???



I brought along my friend Cate as my plus one.


We both really enjoyed stuffing ourselves full of the delicious food. Omnomnom!

This was the menu:


Let's break it down, shall we?

First up: appetisers. I actually didn't get to taste them all because I was late. I did get to taste the grilled asparagus with parma ham and panzerotti and liked them. Cate said everything was yummy, with the asparagus being her fave.

CARPACCIO DI POLPO - sliced octopus, lemon, fennel
NIZZARDA SALAD - mesclun, fresh tuna loin, quail eggs, green beans,
cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, anchovies, sherry dressing
PANZEROTTI - pizza doughs stuffed with chef's creation
POLENTA HERB FRIES - fried polenta mixed with herbs and truffle mushroom sauce
ASPARAGI ALLA GRIGLIA - grilled asparagus, parma ham

I was so excited when they served 3 kinds of pasta. Cate and I both had the spinach gnocchi with gorgonzola cheese as our favourite among the three because it was so deliciously cheesy. But the risotto and crab meat linguini were both so tasty as well. If you love Singapore's famous chilli crab, you'll love the linguini.

GNOCCHI AL GORGONZOLA - spinach gnocchi  with gorgonzola cheese
RISOTTO AL FRUTTI MARE - arborio rice with seafood
LINGUINE AL GRANCHIO - crab meat, chili, tomato cream

Then it was time for the main courses, and I could not help but exclaim how delicious the potatoes were, and I was not alone in my reaction. Seriously, what did they cook those in?? The grilled pork ribs that those came with were sumptuous too, but my favourite meat on that chopping board (how cute is that serving dish, by the way?) was the cod fillet. I was sad I couldn't get more of it! The chicken skewers were not bad too.

GRILLED PORK RIBS - pork ribs, mixed salad, potatoes
CHICKEN SKEWERS - chicken, mild spice, herbs, vegetables with chickpea dip and served with pizza bread
COD FILLET - cod fillet, thyme, sundried tomatoes, sauteed spinach

And just when I thought I couldn't possibly eat any more, they served us this porcini e scamorza pizza, which I loved because I love cheese and mushrooms.

PORCINI E SCAMORZA PIZZA - Porcini mushrooms, cow's milk cheese

However my favourite pizza of the night was the tartufo pizza because it was like having breakfast on a pizza. I mean, that's what it felt like, anyway, because of those cute sunny side up quail eggs. :D

AL TARTUFO PIZZA - black truffles, quail eggs, mushrooms

But even though I was already full to bursting, I still had room for the highlight of the night - desserts, what else? Everyone literally squealed when this was served in front of us. Gosh my mouth is watering even now as I look at that picture again! #foodbloggerproblems

Everyone couldn't stop gushing about the soffiatto - the chocolate molten cake with starcciatella gelato, which has always been my favourite at this place. It was my first time to try the sweet pizza, however, and I was pleasantly surprised to find that I really loved it even though I normally hate cinnamon and raisins. The tiramisu and carrot cake were not bad too.

SOFFIATTO - Italian style dark chocolate molten cake with stracciatella gelato
CANELLA SWEET PIZZA - cinnamon sugar with mascarpone and raisins
TIRAMISU - classic Italian recipe with mascarpone cream, espresso and lady finger
CARROT CAKE - moist carrot cake with cinnamon and walnuts, topped with frosting

We washed that all down with vino. I usually can't stand red wine, but theirs was delicious, so bottoms up!



It wasn't just the food I loved, but the new look of the place, which had been renovated and now looks a lot prettier!




It really is a great place to hang out, with good food and vibes, and right beside a river too!

On top of that we had some entertainment in the form of a violinist and artist who painted a masterpiece on the spot, and went home with a goody bag that contained a pack of zita pasta, a cute Italian beer with a glass, and a can of Italian roast coffee. Everyone on our table really had a great time.


So I'm sure you will too! :)


P.S. This is a behind-the-scenes look at a media party:

FOOD PAPARAZZI

"Smile, food, smile!" I actually really said that, much to my new acquaintances' amusement.

P.P.S. I blogged about Ricciotti before, here.


RICCIOTTI PIZZA PASTA GRILL
Opens daily, 9:30am - 11pm

20 Upper Circular Road
B1-49/50 The Riverwalk
Singapore 058416

Tel:(65) 6533 9060 Fax:(65) 6535 5915
Email:riverwalk@ricciotti.co
Website : http://ricciotti.co/riverwalk


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