So this is the busiest time of the year at work. Every semester, like clockwork, they all start freaking out, just because they have to. No more classes, so you’ve gotta find a way to keep churning all the work, any possible way. Considering that I’m leaving in three weeks, let’s just say that they are giving me an extra-particular hard time…

Luckily for us, Changi Village is not too far from here. I think it has become my favourite spot in the island over time, and for good reasons.

1 it’s far away from town, and it’s not ‘happening’. At all.

2 it’s reputedly ‘seedy’. Not that I actively seek the dirt and the grime in southeast Asia like a good old orientalist westerner, but the surgically clean side of Seem City leaves me cold, and skeptical. When you see what the fines are when you litter or behave just a little bit like you would in your own house, I am enclined to believe that the people in Changi Village are a little more human…

3 it’s one of the ‘hot’ spots of Seem City. I am not interested in the sex industry per se, but then again, it’s good to be reminded that people still have needs, even in Seem City. Even trannies, which is what Changi Village is apparently famous for.

4 Charlie’s corner. Tucked in a corner of the Changi village hawker centre, there is this pub with an impressive beer list. I don’t know where else they serve Maredsous legere, moyenne and forte in the island…the best antidote to civil service ennui.

It felt really good to just get away for a few hours, at the end of the day, and let Luca get his feet wet and sandy.


After all, this is what he will get in Sicily, very very soon.








Luca had a few birthday parties last week, and he was very happy, of course. You can imagine all the attention he received, along with an excessive showering of toys and ang baos (ok no one is supposed to tell him, but mum and dad are not too unhappy about the ang baos either…)


We had a lot of cake too, here at J’s parents’:


…and here downstairs, with most of J’s family and relatives gathered for a barbeque, heroically prepared by yours truly, with much help and guidance from his father in law, and long-distance good vibes from nonno Daniele.


Luca’s little sailor outfit: with a face like that, how hard is it to charm everybody?


Tonton Jerome

Uncle Linus (or is it Pius? damnit, the twins really look alike…)


‘you talkin’ to me?’ notice the red white and green ribbons on the side of the handlebar.


auntie Angie


the great-grandmother (one of 4 that this lucky boy has)


These teeth are made for chewing


Buon compleanno Luca 🙂