Monthly Archives: July 2012

NYC Bagel Factory in Singapore

I wasn’t a bagel person while in the US. But I did enjoy the bagels from Wegmans in Bethlehem, PA. Whenever I stayed over at Andrea’s place, she would have bagels and cream cheese ready for breakfast. The toasted multigrain bagel with strawberry cream cheese makes a really satisfying breakfast. Oh..the Asiago cheese bagel from Panera, toasted with butter, was also really really really good.

I started reminiscing about bagels and decided to find out if I could find bagels in Singapore. I found NYC Bagel Factory after some googling. After visits to 3 different Cold Storage supermarkets, I finally found some of their fresh, not frozen, bagels at Jason’s Marketplace in Raffles City, but they only had very limited varieties (i.e., plain, cheese, whole wheat, and blueberry).

In order to try the other varieties, I ordered 12 bagels (plus 1 free) from NYC Bagel Factory online store and it was delivered to my office today in a rather cute box. I bought multigrain, whole wheat sesame, cheese everything, coconut pandan, and chose mocha chip for the free bagel. All the bagels looked really good, especially, the Cheese Everything bagel. I can’t wait to try that for breakfast tomorrow 🙂

Frozen dinner Singapore-style


I used to look out for different or unusual frozen dinners while grocery shopping in the U.S. In Malaysia/Singapore, frozen dinners are rare and expensive.

I bought this chilled, not frozen, TV-dinner from 7-Eleven. It wasn’t outstanding. For S$3.90 I would rather get real chicken rice.

The Missing Years: 2010-2011

Just a brief recollection of the highlights from September 2009 to December 2011.

September – October 2009:
Busy collecting data for dissertation research. Battling knee injury (ITBS) while training for the NYC Marathon.

November 2009:
Completed the NYC Marathon in 6 hours 12 seconds on November 1, 2009.

December 2009:
Still collecting data for dissertation research.

January 2010:
Still collecting data for dissertation research.

February 2010:
Went for a job interview in Texas two days before my birthday.

March 2010:
Data collection finally ended. Dissertation submitted to committee at the end of March.

April 2010:
Dissertation defended successfully on April 15, 2010 (Tax deadline day). Vice-President Joe Biden was on Lehigh campus during my defense. That caused some inconveniences to my defense attendees but made my defense so much more memorable. Accepted a tenure-track academia job offer from the university in Texas. Found out that mom, dad, and aunt will be coming for my commencement. Good things come in threes!

May 2010:
Hooding ceremony and Commencement. Happy reunion with folks from Malaysia and Natalie from Missouri.

June-July 2010:
Transitioning from Pennsylvania to Texas. Finishing up research work at Lehigh. Packing and getting rid of stuff. Spent many hours looking for a newer used car. Said goodbye to the Passat and welcomed the Vibe (my Wai-Bee). Spent many hours online looking for an apartment in Texas. June 15, 2010 – Precious niece, Joanna, entered my world.

August 2010:
Drove to McKinney, TX, with all my earthly belongings in the car. Very thankful for the presence of my co-driver, Natalie. Stopped by Monticello on the way. Spent many hours setting up the apartment. Started new job.

September – October 2010:
Getting to know Texas, more specifically, the DFW Metroplex.

November 2010:
Skype interviewed for job in Singapore.

December 2010-March 2011:
Getting settled in Texas.

April 2011:
Made one of the most difficult decisions of my life: I accepted the job in Singapore.

May – June 2011:
Work continued on as usual.

July – August 2011:
Went back to Malaysia after 33 consecutive months in the US. Visited Singapore, my future home.

September 2011:
Submitted resignation letter to university in Texas. Planning for transition to Singapore began.

October 2011:
Took a trip with Marcela to visit San Francisco, Yosemite, Las Vegas, and the Grand Canyon. I had to visit the West Coast and also see the Grand Canyon before I left the US.

November 2011:
Sold my dearest car, Wai-Bee, to Natalie. Shipped most of my stuff to Singapore. Donated all my big furniture. Moved out of Greenhaven apartment.

December 2011:
Spent one more week at a friend’s place in McKinney, TX. Flew to Bethlehem, PA, to spend another week with some dear friends. Flew to Singapore to finalize on housing. Went back to Malaysia for cousin’s wedding and Christmas. Went to Singapore and began work on December 27, 2011.

“Atas”

The other day, I learned a new Singapore term: “atas.” “Atas” is the malay word for up/above. It’s also used to denote a “high-and-mighty” attitude. It’s a term used to describe Singaporeans who have been overseas and returned to their home land but they come back with a foreign accent and a high-and-mighty attitude.

Hmmmm…I wonder if I’ve displayed this “atas” attitude when I interact with people in Malaysia and Singapore. Do I seem “atas” when I reminisce about my days in the US? Am I “atas” when I compare things in the US with Malaysia/Singapore?

On a different note, I think most Singaporeans have an “atas” attitude towards Malaysia and Malaysians.

Duhville has moved to Singapore

Duhville has left Texas … the state of extremely hot summers, crazy springtime weather, hailstorm, tornado sirens, endless horizon …

And moved to Singapore … the city of endless summers, rainstorms that will cause massive traffic jams, storm warning sirens, horizon covered with HDB flats …

Singapore is like this photo – orderly, neat, and manicured.
Singapore is unlike this photo – people are everywhere.

Crowds lining up outside every single restaurants at every single shopping malls. Crowds like sardines packed in sweat in the MRT trains and buses.

Large crowds shuffle down the escalator and out the MRT stations. I call this the “Singapore Shuffle”.

It’s quite amazing to observe the two crowds on the opposite side of a pedestrian crossing in Orchard Road come head on as soon as the green-man comes on. You would think that somebody is going to get hurt, but like a school of fish that would move in unison with such grace, these two crowds would just merge together and then separate and then each would go on their own way.

Everyone is together in a small space but each in their own digital world.

iPhones/iPads, smartphones, and other time-passing digital devices dominate life here. I would estimate that 80% of people in the MRT trains are on some-sort of digital device.

Singapore is neat and messy. It’s ironic 🙂

Keeping Duhville alive!

One day Duhville.com will earn me a lot of money. I foresee a movie, possibly an animated movie or a comedy, with that name coming out in the next 10 years. And I’ll share the hundreds of thousands with my brother.

Meanwhile I just need to keep this alive.