I have been so good this year. Well, maybe not, but with Christmas around the corner it’s time to write the letter to the good ol man up North and ask for the things that you want for Christmas!

1. A partridge in a pear tree

I’m totally serious. I would love to have a partridge in a pear tree. It would be remiss not to ask for this. How many people have actually gotten a partridge in a pear tree?

Patridge-by-John-Coulter

No? Well, there you go. ;)

2. Turducken

Christmas used to be all about turkeys. Well, not anymore. Turkey is so ’90s. The thing to have on your Christmas dinner table this year is the turducken. What exactly is a turducken?

Turducken

Well, put simply, it’s a chicken stuffed into a duck which is then stuffed into a turkey. Now how about that!

3. Travel the world and the seven seas

I love to travel and though I’ve been to Europe, Korea, China and several other SEA destinations this year, I would love to spend more time at each place…taking my time, going through every nook and cranny of the places I step foot on.

stonehenge

I’m particularly interested in doing the Trans-Mongolian Railway, which no self respecting traveller can call him/herself that until this ritual is complete. Starting at China and going all the way to Russia. I’ll send you a postcard from Russia (with love).

The Eurorail coming-of-age trail blazing is also something I’ll want to do – a pass to travel all around Europe at your own leisure. I’ll make Ireland my first stop, I’ve never been there and it’s home to St James Gate Brewery in Dublin, which produces the fine brew we call Guinness. :)

4. A new car

I’m not one for material possessions and love experiences more than anything. However, my old car has been through a lot of…er, vehicular mishaps and it seems like EVERYTHING is wrong with it. I probably should send it to a workshop but I fear that it would cost more to fix than to purchase a new one.

How I’m going to pay for the down payment and monthly instalments would require very creative budgeting but hey, since this is a wish list…

5. 5 gold rings

Seriously.

5_gold_rings

I’m so broke right now that 5 gold rings sounds (no pun intended) just about right.

6. A job as a travel writer

Somewhat related to the above, I know that the industry is hard to break in and not as glamorous as it sounds. It’s often a low paid job where you most likely have to top up the balance yourself and you spend a lot of time writing and compiling and doing good ol fashioned legwork. I even hear the Lonely Planet writers have to take a course in self defence before they even get sent out.

bath

However, despite all that it’s something I would love to do. It’s not about the money, it’s about setting your own hours and doing what you like.

7. A new digicam

I have a dSLR and a compact digicam and I tend to use the latter more since it’s shockproof and waterproof, two important qualities when I bring it on my vacations. However, all the trips and travels and misadventures has given it a good beating and I wouldn’t mind getting another one for Christmas. :)

8. Get to see my family more

I must admit, with my family scattered around, it’s hard to have the traditional annual family vacations that my father set a precedent for ever since I was a kid. My sister is married with a baby daughter in New Zealand with my mom and my dad is in Sarawak while I’m working here.

family

Blood runs thicker than water after all. The warmth of having family and giving and receiving support is, pardon the cliché, invaluable.

My dad and I used drink together and my mom has been known to have a pint or two herself. She actually can drink the two of us under the table if she sets her mind on doing it. Heh! It’ll be good to have a family get-together where we can just sit around the living room, nursing a pint of Guinness.

9. A notebook

No, not the ones made from trees, I have come to the conclusion that while having a 17” widescreen notebook is great when you’re at home, lugging all of it in its 2.7 kg glory while travelling is decidedly not.

One thing on my wish list would be for a small and compact notebook where I can write, access the net and run Photoshop while travelling.

10. Get another tattoo

I’ve always wanted to get another tattoo – I even know what I want it to be but I’ve put it off for years, going for piercings instead. I don’t know why I’m procrastinating on this since it’s not on public skin e.g. visible so it’s not a work related issue.

tattoo

I want a full color piece on my left leg, starting from the ankle up to the knee. It would be a rotting female corpse hand reaching up from the grave and gripping me, raking her fingernails and drawing blood down as a reminder. I guess the subject of the reminder is personal since I’ve subconsciously put it off for so long but I want to get it done soon.

11. More personal time

I would love to have more personal time for me to do the things I like. I love reading and have recently completed the Millennium trilogy – a series of novels which centres on Lisabeth Salander, a rather unique and likable character whom I can relate to.

books

I tend to be a voracious reader but I never stray far from my favourite genres – I picked this out on a whim and I’m glad I did. It’s a good read and I aim to do more reading – preferably not just on the porcelain throne. ;)

12. A Christmas dinner with friends

Since my family won’t be together during Christmas, I’ll love to have a nice Christmas dinner with friends complete with several pints of Guinness. Christmas is all about sharing, gift exchanging, letting them know how much they mean in your life and nothing beats a good dinner recounting with your closest friends – sharing stories, spending quality time (which all of us lack with work and everything) and just being together with good food and drink.

guinness girl

On the same note, Guinness is having some consumer promos on their Facebook so it’ll be a great place to find an outlet to have pre-Christmas and Christmas events where you can celebrate the festive season. Surf over to Guinness Malaysia Facebook for more details.

You’ll also get a gift all month long, courtesy of Guinness when you buy 6 pints of Guinness Draught or 1 bucket of Guinness Stout – a heritage collection glass with old Guinness ads! =D

There is also going to be games (Merry Mat anyone?) and surprises at selected outlets starting from 17:59 (the year Guinness was founded). That’s one minute before 6 pm.

guinness

Well, since I’m not going home for Christmas this year, I figured I’ll grab 4 of you and we’ll throw our own mini-Christmas bash instead! I’ve arranged for a cosy dinner for the 5 of us at Backyard in Hartamas, KL on the 22nd December at 7:30 pm.

I’ll select 4 of the most creative answers we’ll all have a great time this Christmas! Don’t worry about drinks and food, it’ll be on me! It’ll be fun, just comment here and and tell me “What you want for your Merry Guinness” this year. Make yourself available on that date and we’ll have an awesome time! My treat. :)

purple_christmas_tree

It’s that time of the year again! The time where shopping malls are decked out with Christmas decorations and refrains of Hark the Herald Angels Sing echo through the centralized speakers. My friend Mel dropped by KL this weekend and we decided to have dinner at Finnegan’s.

feast

I bumped into Jolene there who sagely commented that I always seem to have a beer in my hand whenever she sees me. Heh! It’s true, I’ve grown quite fond of Kilkenny lately and they have a RM 50 for 3 pints promotion going on in some outlets.

kilkenny tap

Dubbed the Cream of Irish Beers, Kilkenny has an interesting history – it didn’t originate from a traditional brewery but from the holy cellars (I presume) of St. Francis Abbey in the 14th century. Put simply, it was Franciscan monks who started making this particular beer.

Interesting, eh?

kilkenny

Kilkenny is an Irish cream ale that’s smooth and rich – qualities which I rate highly. I’m a huge fan full bodied beers and stouts. It’s perfect for the festive season, although we don’t get very cold weather over here.

sandwiches

We shared a stew, open sandwiches, and a pork knuckle which nearly killed us (too much food for two people). I guess overeating is also part of the festive ritual.

pork knuckle

Kilkenny promotions are available at selected outlets throughout the country. I’m going to try my hand at “Cooking with Kilkenny” (has a nice ring to it, eh?) next! I plan to use Kilkenny in a recipe to see how it goes.

Find out more about Kilkenny here. I have a feeling this beer is going to be big in the coming years! You can get it at most Irish pubs (Finnegan’s, Delaney’s, Malone’s) and it’s also available at on tap in WIP, Sid’s, Royal Oak, Bulldog, Laundry and Jarrod and Rawlins. Here’s to more festive seasons with Kilkenny!

dinner

Fa la la la la, la la, la la!

Wanted: Masked men

heineken festive mask 2009

Have you seen these masks around?

It seems that a gang of villainous environmentally friendly people have been going around PLANTING VIRTUAL TREES!

These virtual trees in turn had been matched by a certain corporation into a freaking FOREST of endangered species of trees. REAL TREES!

Hmph! As an advocate for pollution and general destruction of the third rock from the sun, we will not stand (or sit) for this…TRAVESTY.

*steeples fingers Mr. Burns style*

Their last know locations:
Havana, off Changkat Bukit Bintang
Laundry Bar, The Curve
Terrace Bar, Zouk Club KL
WIP, Bangsar Shopping Centre 

heineken festive mask me

If you see these tree hugging a-holes anywhere, please do not hesitate to give us a buzz and we will reward you by…er, hastening the destruction of the world.

Co-signed,
War, Famine, Pestilence, Death 

heineken festive mask

No, those are not V for Vendetta promos. There are no gunpowder plots or Guy Fawkes anywhere in this post (although the mask kinda looks like the dude right?).

Anyway, I was at Laundry @ Curve to do an save-the-environment video. Oi, you back there, don’t look at me like that. 

Heineken blogger video shoot

I can do green too k?

*cough*

Excuse me.

Heineken KOL video shoot 

It was a fun experience – chilling at the bar while having a cold one and doing the Heineken Festive Shout Out! videos .

You can do your part to save the environment too! I don’t think my video is out yet so here’s the Unofficial Version (TM):

It’s just simple things like turning off your air conditioning when you go out that helps keep the CO2 levels low. If everyone does their part, the world would be a much better place!

You can also contribute towards the Heineken Festive Forest Project by getting the masks at the outlets listed above and surfing over to their Facebook page to Plant a Tree!

There is a unique code at the back which you can enter at the FB site to plant your very own virtual tree and watch it grow. Heineken is partnering with Wild Asia to plant a small real forest (as in the kind that has barks, leaves and roots) in this Facebook application. This will be planted in Pahang in April 2010 in conjunction with Earth Day. 

heineken festive mask tree

There are also details on Heineken Star parties on the fan site so go green with Heineken this festive season! Have a cold one and do your part to save the environment while you’re celebrating the Christmas and ushering in the New Year.

Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind ?
Should old acquaintance be forgot,
and old lang syne ?
For auld lang syne, my dear,
for auld lang syne,
we’ll take a cup of kindness yet,
for auld lang syne.

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