Friday, January 30, 2009


Sarah Ruhl's contemporary retelling of Eurydice will run at the Alley Theatre in Houston beginning on Feb. 4. The final performance will be on March 1. Gregory Boyd will direct this performance, held at Neuhaus Stage. The preview starts tonight.

Ruhl's play retells the story of Eurydice and her trip to the Underworld on the eve of her marriage to Orpheus. (I guess a trip tot he Underworld is an extreme way to address "cold feet.") Reviews for Ruhl's version of this classic tale have been quite good, and it looks like a fun event for Houstonians.

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Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Toh Gardens

Toh Gardens is Singapore's leading exporter of our national flower, the orchid. They've got soem really amazing plants out at their garden in Choa Chu Kang. (Jameo captured some great shots of the flowers, and they are posted at his blog if you'd like to have a look. He's obviously been having lots of fun with his new lens!!)

Toh Orchid is located at 11 Lorong Pasu, if you'd like to pop in and have a look. I've been there many times, and find that have brought friends out to see the site there. Many of my friends who have come to Singapore from overseas say that they didn't realize you could even find places like this in Singapore.

Toh Gardens is just around the corner from the Farm Mart. It makes for a fun little mini-tour to stop by the garden to see the flowers, then to have a meal at Farm Mart, followed by a little shopping.

Toh Gardens also does weddings and other events. You can find the contact details in the photos over at Jameo's — I'll make you go over and hunt for the info this time!

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Monday, January 26, 2009

Happy New Year!

Happy Chinese New Year to all!


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Sunday, January 25, 2009

I Love This Time of Year

I always love this time of year. Even though you won't see in Singapore a dramatic change of seasons like you might see in other parts of the world, but you will see migratory birds who make their way here to avoid colder weathers up North.

I caught these pictures of one such bird out near Sungei Buloh last week. Actually, I took these pictures while I was standing in an industrial park, though you wouldn't know it from the way the scenery looks in the pictures.


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Saturday, January 24, 2009

Houston Auto Show

The Houston Auto Show begins today, and it will continue through Feb 1 at Reliant Stadium.

It has been a long time since I was at an Auto Show in Houston — so long that I think the last one I attended was in the Astrodome! — but I've been to enough to know that the event is a lot of fun. There are all sorts of cool vehicles to see, with plenty of interesting displays.

If you are in the area, do stop by and enjoy the exhibition. It is lots of fun!

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Friday, January 23, 2009

Cinderella in Singapore

My goddaughter recently went to see Cinderella in Singapore. It's the same show I saw in Shanghai last year. She wrote out her thoughts to share with me, and has given me permission to post them here.

She says:

Dear Auntie Shelly,

I loved the Cinderella musical. The first part was funny when her godmother (not mine) came out and started saying that this story started about two thousand years ago in China. I think that Cinderella can sing very well. Cinderella's godmother could actually do magic. When she put the two rats into the box, the end of her wand started glowing, the box flipped over, and two men got out and danced away. It was pretty amazing. Her stepmother and stepsisters could sing quite well too. In the last part of hte show when the prince found Cinderella and got married, Cinderella did not look like she was a maid at all!

I think the musical was quite nice. Too bad [my brother] did not come! I think [he] would have liked it!

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Thursday, January 22, 2009

Update on Obtaining a Visa to China

The rules for US passport holders in Singapore for obtaining a visa to China have not changed. Visas are still available for either a single or double entry, valid for 3 and 6 months, respectively.

I got lucky with my recent application, though. My passport, as you might imagine, has gotten very full of China visas, especially over the past year or so, since the visa requirements changed so that the 1-year multi-entry visas were no longer available. I renewed, requested extensions, etc., more times than I care to think about in 2008. When I went to the embassy to get this most recent visa, the officer flipped through, looking at all the cancelled visas, and said, "You really love China."

I saw that as a bit of an opening, so asked her if it had reverted back yet to the old rules, allowing me to apply for the multi-entry visa. She said that this category of visa is only open to Singaporeans. But... since my Mandarin isn't bad, and since I obviously love China, she'd grant me the 1-year, multi-entry visa.

I am so happy. It is a big, big relief to not have to return to the embassy over and over. I hope to be so fortunate when I renew it next year!

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Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Hua Yi Festival: The Village

Watch for details on the upcoming production of The Village at the Esplanade!

The Production Workshop from Taiwan will host the show, and it will feature some of the brightest minds around. The show centers around Taiwan's rapidly disappearing Dependent's Villages. The presentation will be in Mandarin and Hokkien, with English subtitles.

You can catch the shows on 7 and 8 Feb. Ticket prices begin at $38. Get your tickets now to avoid disappointment!

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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

La Traviata

Scheduled to run Feb 6 - 14 at the Shanghai Dramatic Arts Theatre is La Traviata. Tickets run from RMB 100 to 380.

It looks like a very entertaining piece, and tickets will probably go quite fast. You can book yours online at the site linked above.

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Monday, January 19, 2009

Aesop and His Fabulous Fables

Watch for news on the upcoming show by Alliance Francaise Theatre, Aesop and His Fabulous Fables. Writer and Director Brian Seward will cooperate with the Drama Centre to bring this musical to the Singapore stage March 1-19.

Be on the lookout for more information!

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Sunday, January 18, 2009

Marina Barrage

Marina Barrage is the newest addition to Singapore's downtown scene. It aims to serve a 3-in-1 function: addressing Singapore's water supply needs, flood control, and an entertainment hang-out for Singapore's crowds.

The Marina Bay area at Singapore has always been a pretty spot to go, and the Marina Barrage capitalizes on that natural beauty. Rather than just building another dam to help control flooding and to create another reservoir, the government went all out and made the spot an appealing place to visit.

Inside the Marina Barrage, you will find the Sustainable Singapore Gallery, a place that highlights Singapore's efforts to create a sustainable future for this little island nation, especially in the face of the fact that Singapore has so few natural resources. I have long been impressed with the nation's efforts to maximize its resources, and the Marina Barrage really does a nice job of demonstrating how effectively Singapore addresses this concern.

If you haven't popped by yet, do go down and have a look. It is a pleasant way to spend a day.

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Saturday, January 17, 2009

Arbor Day Celebration

At the Houston Arboretum (4501 Woodway) you can enjoy some family- and environment-friendly activities today for Arbor Day. Tree seedlings will be given away, and native trees will be available for sale. There will be activities from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

While you are there, you might want to canoe Buffalo Bayou too. It could be a very fun way to spend Arbor Day!

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Friday, January 16, 2009

David Byrne Live

David Byrne Live in Signapore!

A one-night performance at Suntec International Convention and Exhibition Hall, 21 January at 8 pm. Tickets are priced from $58 to $188. This is Byrne's first Asian tour.

This should be a great event to enjoy just before Chinese New Year. Attending a good, loud concert is a fun way to unwind and begin to get in the mood for the holiday celebrations.

Get your tickets now, and see you at Suntec!

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Thursday, January 15, 2009

The Little Mermaid

You can catch a performance of The Little Mermaid at the Shanghai Puppet Theater Exhibition Center on Jan 18 at 10 am or 3 pm. There will be later performances on the 29th and 30th. Tickets cost RMB 90, RMB 120, or RMB 150.

The Shanghai Puppet Theater Exhibition Center is located at 5th Floor, No. 388 Nanjing Road (W) Ciro's Plaza.

It looks like The Little Mermaid will be lots of fun for the whole family. Bundle the little ones up and get ready for a day out to enjoy the show together. You can either catch it just before Chinese New Year, or if you prefer the shows on the 29th or 30th, you can incorporate it into your celebrations.


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Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Rod Stewart in Singapore

On 28 Feb, Rod Stewart will be playing his greatest hits live at Singapore Indoor Stadium.

I am sure that the stadium will be packed, most probably with a middle aged crowd. But don't worry, they won't turn down the sound, nor will they end early! Rod Stewart fans are Forever Young, after all.

This show will fill up pretty quickly. You will want to get your tickets early to avoid disappointment.

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Tuesday, January 13, 2009

A Good Use of Blogging Space

My blogging friend has started a new blog called Prayer Corner. You can go there and request prayers, "no strings attached."

Stop in if you are needed a prayer offered on your behalf. If you prefer, you can request prayers at his email addres
prayercorner [at] ymail [dot] com

(You'll have to convert that to a usable email address. I put it this way to avoid having spam flood his inbox.)

I think that he will be posting some prayers there regularly too. It should be a very good site to visit, whether you want to request prayers or perhaps pray for some of the requests listed there. Or, maybe, you'd just rather read the exchange that takes place.

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Monday, January 12, 2009

Khalil Fong in Shanghai

Get your tickets now to attend the Khalil Fong concert in Shanghai on Feb 13 at 7:30 pm. The concert will be at the Shanghai International Gymnastics Center at No. 777 Wuyi Road. Tickets run from RMB 280 to RMB 880. You can book online.

You can visit Fong's website here.

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Sunday, January 11, 2009

Popstars City

I have just heard about a spot that should be of interest to kids in Singapore. It is called Popstars City. I have not yet been, but it looks like a fun place.

At Popstars City, you will find a cafe, shops, an academy, and lots of talent. It is billed as "A home for kids performing." It looks like they put on quite a show, including kids from Singapore and overseas. It aims to be "Singapore's newest and grooviest hang-out for teens, tweens, tykes & talents!"

Popstars City looks like a great place to host birthday parties and other events for kids. I plan to stop by soon to look around and see what events they have going on. If you'd like to do the same, it is located at 11 Unity Street #02-01, Robertson Walk.

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Saturday, January 10, 2009

Rainbow Islands of Big Nose

At the Little Friends Theater in Shanghai, you can catch the play Rainbow Islands of Big Nose on Jan 18, Jan 28, or Feb 28. The show started on Jan 3, and it looks like a lot of little ones were having lots of fun with it!

4th Floor
New Building No. 4
No. 64 Yan'an Road (W)
China Welfare Institute Children's Palace
Shanghai 200040

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Friday, January 09, 2009

Mrs. Warren's Profession

Previews start today for George Bernard Shaw's Mrs. Warren's Profession at the Alley Theater in Houston. Anders Cato will direct the performance, staged at Hubbard Stage. The show opens on Jan. 14, and runs through Feb. 1.

Mrs. Warren's Profession is a tale of a battle between mother and daughter over all the big things in life — sex, money, love, and all the rest. It should be a lot of fun, so don't miss this performance at the Alley Theater!

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Thursday, January 08, 2009

Are You a Follower?

I've started following several blogs since Blogger introduced the Following feature, but I failed to activate the service here.

It's actually pretty handy. All you have to do is add yourself as a follower of this blog using the gadget to the left. Then, when you log in to blogger, whatever is new on this blog will show up on your dashboard. It is easy, that way, to keep up with new posts on your favorite blogs.

I am still exploring how best to use this feature, and haven't used it as much yet as I think I will in the future. But I do know I want to have it here on this blog, to make it easier for readers to keep up with what is going on.

If you'd like to be a follower of Peregrine Online, just click the gadget to the left and add it to your dashboard.

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Children's Play in Shanghai

On January 10 & 11, there will be a Children's Play at Little Friends Theater. Showtime is at 10:15 am, and tickets are RMB60.

4th Floor
New Building No. 4
No. 64 Yan'an Road (W)
China Welfare Institute Children's Palace
Shanghai 200040

It looks like a fun event for the little ones!

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Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Mystery Jets

Catch the Mystery Jets in Singapore!

On Jan 11
At Zouk

The progressive rock band Mystery Jets has been receiving rave reviews of late. They'll be putting in an appearance at Zouk on the 11th, and are preparing a stellar performance.

Tickets are $40 for the first 200 sold, and $48 thereafter. If you want to purchase yours at the door, it will cost you $55.

You have to be 16 to enter, and photo ID will be required at the door.

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Tuesday, January 06, 2009


You've still got just under two weeks to catch Mousetrap at the Shanghai Dramatic Arts Center on An Fu Lu. The show runs through Jan 18, and there are still some tickets available.

Do book early to avoid disappointment. I am not in Shanghai during this run, but have heard good things about the show from some friends who have attended.

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Monday, January 05, 2009

Christmas Tree Recycling

If you are in the Houston area and you've not yet recycled your Christmas tree, you've still have a few days to do so. This service will end on the 7th, so you need to hurry to get it done.

Here is a note from the organizers:
Information on where, what, and when. We are asking residents to remove tinsel, ornaments, plastic bags, plastic tree stands, and plastic water bowls. For more information, residents can call 3-1-1. Flocked trees are not accepted.

While you are at it, this is also a good time to look around for good sales on Christmas trees. My parents just got a new one, and it really looks nice. And even better... it is very easy to fold up and take out each year!

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Sunday, January 04, 2009

Farm Mart

The Farm Mart in Choa Chu Kang is one of my favorite spots for a nice local dinner. The staff at the Farm Mart is always friendly and helpful, and the food is really good. I've tried a lot of different things on the menu, and have not found anything yet that I don't like. I've brought a number of friends there as well, and everyone always gives it the thumbs up.

Besides the good food and the friendly staff, the Farm Mart has a pleasant atmosphere. It is an outdoors setting, overlooking some of the farms and gardens in the area. It can easily make you forget that you are right in the middle of an urban island like Singapore. A lot of friends who I've brought there said they didn't even realize that Singapore has places like this.

Outside of the restaurant, there is a nice market where you can find lots of fresh produce and some specialty items that are hard to find elsewhere. (When I was there over the weekend, we bought a few Chinese New Year goodies, getting ready for the upcoming holiday.) There is also a little farm and fishing section. It can be fun to walk through after dinner — the perfect way to let a heavy meal settle before heading home.

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Saturday, January 03, 2009

Shanghai's Arts Scene

From time to time on this website, I feature various events and places that are happening in Shanghai's arts scene. I've just finished writing a more involved series over at Tai Shan, the blog I keep in association with Sloth Jockey. Along with the write ups there, I've posted a fair number of pictures. The link will lead you to an index page, and from there, you can continue to explore whatever is of interest. I'm sure I will continue to add to it in upcoming posts at Tai Shan too.

Keep watching here for more information about what is coming up in Shanghai.

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Friday, January 02, 2009

Neither East Nor West

When I saw the title "Neither East Nor West," I found it to be something I can relate to. It is the title of the exhibit at the Asian Civilizations Museum in Singapore that is running through Feb 1. It is subtitled "Asians in Monochrome" — a very intriguing use of labels for the event, I thought.

The exhibit focuses on photos from the late 19th and early 20th centuries that were taken of Asians in London. The portraits feature Asians in elaborate dress, all decked out in their finery, making their presence felt on Bond Street. It is a fascinating look at an age gone by and the cross-cultural relationships that were going on during that era.

The exhibit features more than 50 portraits, 12 of them coming from G. R. Lambert & Co., one of Singapore's earliest studios. It is a great way to explore an era, whether your interest lies in the fashions, the photo technology and techniques, the people, or the relationships between them.

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Thursday, January 01, 2009

New Year, New Era

This is exciting. It seems that 2009 marks a new era for this blog.

I have, in the past, posted an entry on this blog that was written by my goddaughter about her travels in Malaysia. Today is the first time that my godson (her brother) is allowing me to post his writing here. He went to see a production of "The Tooth Fairy" with his mother a couple of weeks ago, and has, with only minimal amounts of compulsion, written this for me to post here.

So, from the pen of my 6-year-old godson:

Dear Aunty Shelly,

I don't like Macavities because she is bad and I like the story because the tooth fairy, Ruthie, and her brother got Ruthie's tooth back!

The report is very orderly and nicely put together, with an attractive design. It is quite a pleasure to be the honored recipient of such work! I'll look forward to more reviews from the kids in the future.

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