Coffee Diary 160121

It was not even 9 in the morning when I sat down in one of the empty booths in the Pancake Parlour in Melbourne Central.

All Night Long was playing on the speaker.

This place brought about tons of memories.

Comforting memories ━ of breakfast dates with Liz and Pedro, where we ordered whatever we wanted with zero judgement, planning fun weekends with Jik, of having a morning moment to myself. It’s the equivalent to the chicken rice shop near the HDB I stayed in Bishan, Singapore. These are the places I frequented in search of food and comfort by means of eating my comfort food, which varies from pancake to chicken rice.

The unicorns print mask-wearing waiter came to take my order. I went for the classic. Two pancake with ice cream on top, strips of crispy fried bacon and eggs ━ scrambled this time. She helped me to save $3.80 by giving free maple syrup. Made me glad that I didn’t put the order through the app.

Order placed, I flipped through Patti Smith’s book, Year of the Monkey. I got jealous of Ms Smith; for writing eloquently and having stayed in Japantown. Meanwhile, I struggle with basic grammar and have never been to a Japantown.

Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go was playing next. I put the book down to add it, and the song before, to my Spotify list. I apparently like (Pancake) Parlour(s) songs, a realisation that would help to break my self-limiting belief that I am not into music.

I spotted a hand-written signage:

$5 discount on hot days (above 30 degrees)

That’s not a lot, is it?

Idk how this place survives, to be honest. It’s pretty huge for a restaurant in a prime area such a Melbourne Central but each time I am here, I only see a few other patrons ━ most looks like out-of-towners (in a way, myself included).

Today was no different.

Also, coffee has never been good here. It tasted more like mocha, but the smell strangely reminded me of Japan. Then again, these days many things, anything, everything reminds me of Japan.

Only after I paid my bill and stepped out of the place, I remembered that I didn’t register for the Covid tracker.

First Quarter Moon Aquarius

210121

Happy Aquarius season ♒︎ guys!

I haven’t been writing for a week here, the longest period since I started this blog last year. I am feeling a wee bit of a writer-FOMO, so here are some random observations I noted down in the journal recently —

I use a 400-page black Moleskine to journal. It was a birthday gift from Fafa. At first, I thought it would be my annual journal. But now, only five months in and having used up 3/4 of it, I think I will be getting myself a new journal for my half-birthday in March.

One of the reasons that I haven’t been writing much on the blog is because I am hitting a tarot-reading wall. For some reason, I have been feeling a little less excited about journaling about tarot recently. Not sure whether I am even allowed to say that, but that’s the truth. I have come up with solutions, though. I have started journaling tarot with prompts given by the Moon Void Tarot‘s creator, Stefanie Caponi to honor the Aquarius season (my Moon sign).

I also bought another tarot deck—my first-quarter purchase (hey, I lasted 20 days! Now, I have to go through the next 70-something days without buying another deck). It’s the Fifth Spirit Tarot which sits on top of my 2021 tarot deck list. Yesterday, I saw that Two Sided Tarot has it listed on their website and with only AUD10 shipping, I knew I shouldn’t wait any longer.

One last thing about tarot: I am looking for a tarot deck with continuity or a similar theme throughout the deck. The Moon Void Tarot deck has been the closest I’ve got, but the non-human court-cards broke the singular theme thing that it had going for it.

Even though I haven’t been writing much here, I have been compiling random notes I wrote here and there — paper and digital — into my Day One App. Maybe I can share some of the not-super-boring ones here?

Also, even though I haven’t been writing much, I have been running. I registered for a measly 10km run in October. That gets me going. I am clocking in 3km every run, but with an embarrassing pace to be shared here.

The last best coffee I had was well, not a coffee. We went to Brunswick last weekend to feast on a crab at Miss Katie’s Crab Shack. On the way back, we stopped at one of my favourite coffee shops in Melbourne for some sit-down coffee chai.

This month, I dreamt of Fafa bringing and or showing me a ladybug. Twice. Google told me that it’s a symbol of good luck.

This week, I tried a new Thai dish called Hor Mok for the first time. It’s steamed fish cooked with coconut cream, curry and basil leaf served banana leaf cup. I ordered it because it reminded me of Kerala Meen Pollichathu, but it tasted closer to Cambodian Fish Amok.

Yesterday, I found out that all this while I have been cooking and eating butter that has expired in 2019.

Today, I woke up reminiscing about my Uni time. Jik and I used to sneak into each others class. Even though we majored in different subjects and went to different Universities. And hers was more fun than my boring Accounting lectures.  Then, I realized that taking up CPA is like adopting the worst part of schooling-the studying and exam parts. Ugh!

I realize more and more that I am a creature of routines and rituals. So instead of ignoring it, I should use those things as a foundation of my daily life.

Half-naked yoga brings me joy.

♒︎K

Film Camera MjuII Kodak Ultramax 400 Sky Bird

5 AM Thoughts at 3.30 AM

My 5 AM thoughts visited me again today, only that it came at 3.30 AM.

It has been three days in a row that I haven’t been sleeping peacefully, but today it was much worse since I could not go back to sleep anymore.

I refuse to self-diagnose myself with insomnia. Self-diagnosing when it comes to health is a trait that has become second nature among my extended family. Hence my conscious effort to stir away from it. Even at 3.30 AM.

I think I just overstimulated myself yesterday; both mind and body. The brain has been forced to work since 8 AM yesterday, and it didn’t stop even until I went to bed. From office work, blog posts, personal errands and reading heavy stuff until I fell asleep.

Meanwhile, I also let myself binge-eat yesterday using the period excuse. From sugary drinks, spicy chips to late-night garlic rice.

As a result, the heated stomach and buzzing brain refused to let my tire-soul rest.


I thought about how it has been a while since I share my coffee-diary entries here. How I forever chase the golden-light in life, both literally and figuratively. Both topics are unrelated.

I wondered whether I would have developed a deeper and layered understanding of a language if I was not raised to be multilingual. Since even until now, I struggle to express myself a bit more in-depth. In any language. Not only that, I have passed an embarrassing number of reading materials, just because it’s too hard for me to digest.

I felt like there is a version of me who I want to be (the one who reads daily, who cooks often, who goes on hikes on the weekend and who runs a marathon) and there is the current me that is not there yet. This year is about closing the gap between those two MEs, or at least minimize the gap.

My thought then went to the unwrapped gifts in the living room. It’s for a party that I have been invited to, by someone I wouldn’t invite to mine. Funny, isn’t it? Someone can be your VIP, but it doesn’t always mean vice versa. If you think I was being mean, hey at least I got them a gift 🤷🏽.

I wrote a reminder to finish reading Patti Smith this month – preferably this weekend if I am good. And to visit a new-to-me neighborhood cafe before we move out from here. Also, to get a tarot journal.


– ❥K

The Moon Singapore Bookshop

Postcard from The Moon

I am in a much better post-PMS mood.

We are in my latest favorite bookshop in Singapore, The Moon.

Fafa is sitting beside me, busy arranging timing with his former favorite hair-stylist to cut his invisible side bangs that has been bothering him throughout the day. I am writing this while waiting for the barista to prepare our coffee orders.

From here, I want to go outside and walk around so I can take mural pictures around Chinatown. But it’s so hot and humid, and we already have a hard time to breath; at least it doesn’t rain cats and dogs today (yet), and for that, I am grateful.

Today is also officially one year since we got the matching Torii gate tattoo by Ron Sugano in Tokyo, Japan.

Coffee Diary: Yet Another Farewell

I am moving to Australia. I am taking the red-eye to Melbourne tonight. My cousins kidnapped me early this morning for one last coffee date, at least for sometime. We went to a hipster coffeeshop in South Jakarta. We talked, we cried and we face-timed with Jik. They got me a watch, how thoughtful.

Cousins Farewell

My heart is breaking all over again.

Mister Chai on Cuba Street Wellington

The quirky little food truck was managed by a french girl who was living in New Zealand. She was pretty and friendly which beat the whole French perception. We found it accidentally while strolling down Cuba Street. I told Fafa that we had to go there (even though we just had breakfast). I ordered a ginger peppermint herbal tea that kicked soon after while Fafa refused to get anything because it all seemed to Zen for him. Ngeh! I suspected it was the one that kept me fit while Fafa falls sick a day later.

Organic Coffee at Oriental Bay Wellington

We strolled down Oriental Bay on a fantastic weather day, the sky was clear blue, and it was warm enough not to put your jacket on. Oriental Bay was packed with activities, kids running around being kids, adults in roller stakes and tourists with a coffee cup in their hands. The vibe was so cheerful we could sit, soak everything and enjoy it for the longest time. And we did just that. There are a few food trucks around here, most of them sold beverages, but I was drawn to this particular one, and I can’t explain why.

Dunking Chocolate Chip Cookie into A Warm Glass of Milk at Moustache Auckland

Tell me, when was the last time you had a chocolate chip dunked into a bowl of milk? My guess must have been a long time ago. Me? I had it for the first time in my life here!

When I was young, Amma showed me how to do it, but I found it sickening. Even after seeing all those OREO types of an ad on T.V., I had never tempted. So when we came here after seeing a gazillion, I only ordered hot cocoa while Fafa ordered it. He offered me to try it. Knowing he wouldn’t stop before I did, I figured I’d bite the bullet and had a small bite. The cookie was crunchy with lots of warm gooey chocolate chips, and the milk was cold. It was an ORGASMIC combination—no other way to describe it. We then ordered two more cookies and came back the next day, and the next day after that.

Remedy Coffee in Auckland CBD

Unlike in Melbourne, where I immersed in the city’s coffee culture, even though the weather was considerably colder when we visited, I didn’t crave much for Auckland coffee. Instead, I kept asking for alternatives, while Fafa tried various types of caffeine. No, this wasn’t a complaint. I had the best times satisfying my sweet tooth. Among our pit stops, Remedy Coffee was my favourite one.

The Central Perk of Auckland. This little coffee shop was an excellent find tucked in the CBD area. It has everything required for a perfect coffee shop; coziness, exciting crowd, a decent menu, friendly staff, lots of books and games, sofa, window seats and outdoor seating. If I was an ex-pat, working as a sheep photographer, and living in Auckland, you could find me here at least three times a week, with my own sets of F.R.I.E.N.D.S. I ordered Honey+Lemon+Ginger here and tried to linger as long as we could. When you visit Remedy, please participate in their #mirrorselfie challenge. It’s a lot of fun and only a little embarrassing.