Saturday, 29 September 2007


We have finally made a decision on the car we will get. It will be a white one of these:

A Toyota Fortuner; it is a 7-seater with 4-wheel drive. Cool, huh?
Ever since we had our Landrover in Copenhagen, I have wanted a car where you "sit high" again. For a long time now, I have also dreamed of a car with 7 seats. Makes life so much easier, especially when you have guests. (Hint, hint!)
We will go down to the Toyota dealer on Monday, and since we know they have them in stock - we should have our one already next week!! Yay!

Friday, 28 September 2007

Living the life

Today I went with my good friend Anna, to "her" beauty salon and got a manicure and pedicure, including foot scrub and foot massage. It was absolutely wonderful, sitting there in the big "Joey-chairs" chatting away, getting pampered.

Then we took our now very soft footsies and pretty hands and went for a nice meze-lunch together.
It was a lovely break from looking at houses, test driving cars and running errinds.

I can definetly get used to this life!

Thursday, 27 September 2007

First visit to the post office

Today we went to the post office, because we had received a slip about a package that needed to be picked up.

It took (at least) half an hour in the queue to buy stamps for two letters, then we had to go to another queue to get our package - fortunately with only one person before us.
Then, we had to open the package then and there, in front of some customs officer. It was some toys that Mormor and Morfar had sent (thank you!), so we didn't ruin the surprise for the kids, they could still open it, again, when we got home.

So far we are not too impressed with the postal delivering. Mail from Europe has taken weeks to reach us, not sure quite where it all goes wrong though - could also be hung-ups with the redirection in the UK I guess.
We have applied for a post box, so that our mail will arrive there in stead of to the airline. We think eliminating one part of the chain, might get the mail to us quicker.

Wednesday, 26 September 2007

Mid-Autumn Festival

Today in school, they celebrated Mid-Autumn Festival, or "Mooncake Festival", which is one of the two most important holidays in the Chinese calendar. There are loads of Chinese in Brunei, so therefor today the kids were supposed to bring in mooncakes and dress up in Chinese clothing.
They were all so colourful and cute in their little outfits!

Here he is, our little China-man!

Here is Lucas and Hannah. Note her shoes, the girl knows how to accessorize! (Poor Lucas had to wear his uniform shoes, maybe not really matching but had nothing better...)

And here is Lucas and his mate Gil.

For Thomas

This was Nathans birthdaypresent (yes, Nathans...) from our friend Thomas, who is one of the CEOs at Lego in Denmark (very good friend to have!).
It took most of the day to build it, and now it takes up the whole dining table... Don't quite know where to put it, we need a bigger house, pronto!

The EFIT photo project

I have started doing the EFIT ('Ett foto i timmen' = one photo an hour). It is a Swedish started photo project that I have been interested in for a while, and now I thought it's about time I become a part of it.

Once a month, a lot of people around the globe document their day with one photo each hour, and then they share their days on their blogs or websites. It is kind of cool, and you get to see a lot of different ways a day can be spent!

Here is my first EFIT, hopefully I will keep it up so you will see many more!

EFIT - Tuesday 25.09.2007

06.40 Breakfast time. We have started setting the table the night before, since every minute counts in the morning!

07.20 Time for school run: mandarin folder, lunch bag and change bag.

08.55 We took our Jura coffee machine with us from the UK - still so in love with it!

09.45 Checking news and email, a bit of a quiet time, just me, my coffee and my Mac.

11.30 Doing some shopping. We only had one noodle when we got here, so obviously, we had to get another one - so they will have one each.

12.30 Picking Lucas up from school. Lunch boxes left out so the parents can check what's left and what's gone.

13.00 Lunchtime, my favourite - sushi. Not quite the kids favourite, but they liked the way lunch got served! Choo-choo!

14.00 After school, a bit of Lego-play is always good fun!

15.10 The maintenance guy is mowing our tiny lawn.

16.15 At the supermarket, about to entry "the naughty section", to get some bacon and ham.

17.30 Not much time to cook, got home late from shopping. Lazy dinner, pizza...

18.15 Time for a bit of "Sponge Bob Square pants" before bedtime, and I'm going to upload the photos from today and spend the rest of the evening in front of the tv for a change.

Tuesday, 25 September 2007

Satu, due, tiga!

I have plenty of personal goals, for my "new life" down here in Brunei.

I was thinking before we came, that moving countries would be the perfect opportunity to get new routines into my life, and the life of our family as a whole. For the family, it is working fine! We have been starting out with quite a few changes and some new and improved rules for the kids to follow. We have managed to break some of the bad habits we had created in the UK already. That is all good!

I also thought that all the extra time I would get on my hands (thanks to the amah!) would be spent doing things I always have wanted to do, but never got around to.

So here we go, some of my goals:
* Starting a blog, and write in it continuously - check! ;)
* Doing some online university studies - check, I have applied to do a course in Photoshop and Digital photo editing, starts in January.
* Learn malay - check, I have started an online course, and do a lesson every evening! 'Satu, due, tiga' means one, two, three!

So far so good! I actually have lots of more things on my list, but will tell you more about them on a later occasion.

New link!

Yes, I have added yet another link. This one is for another club we will become members of (as soon as we get our credit cards), the RBYC - Royal Brunei Yacht Club.

It is mostly for people who have boats, which some of our friends here do have; but also for people like us, who come to use the pool and the beach, socialize and hang out at the restaurant in the evening. It is the Serasa clubhouse we will be using.

That's where we had dinner with the Scotts on Friday night, and the food was superb!

Birthday summary

Yesterday was a very nice day, so he says anyway, the birthday boy. We are happy he was pleased!

Most of the day we spent driving around running errands, but we also got a huge chocolate cake and invited the Scotts, the Turners and the Hamblys around for 'fika' (=coffee and cake). I was very happy I knew where I had the candles for the cake - but then I couldn't find any matches, so we had to just pretend the candles were lit...

In the evening we had Lisa (our part-time amah) to come and look after the kids while we went to Senja Lounge to have dinner, with the new wine-bag-thingy properly kitted out. (Still feels a bit silly to bring a cool bag with you out, but there you go!) Food was very yummy, and it was a lovely evening with just the two of us.

My scrapbook "corner"

I have finally unpacked my scrapping stuff - my creative fingers were itching far too much!! Since we don't really have the space here for me to spread out all over one of the desks, this is how my "scrapping corner" looks now:

I have a plan once we find a house, to get a carpenter to custom build me a workstation. It is apparently very cheap here to get things built, and I have a vision of exactly how I want it.
Until then, I have to make do with this - at least, my things are out of the boxes and I can scrap now!

Monday, 24 September 2007

Happy Birthday Nathan!!!

Today we are having a birthday in the house!!
Hipp, hipp houuuurraaaayyy!
The kids and I sang beautifully to him this morning, and he got some great presents (I suspect some more are on their way too):

* A cake cutter from Georg Jensen
* A very practical keep-winebottles-cool-bag-thingie
* A new tennis/sports-bag
* A huge Lego-set of a Boeing 787

"Linnea målar" (=Linnea is painting)

Linnea is enjoying to be home alone, because then she is allowed to do painting and stuff (I can't handle the mess with the two of them.. that's what school is for!). She is concentrating really hard and painting really slowly. Here she told me "Linnea målar airplane" (=Linnea is painting an airplane) - can you spot it?

She is very pleased with herself!

Sunday, 23 September 2007

Extended vocabulary

Linnea is in the "I-will-repeat-all-you-say"-phase at the moment. She echoes the last word of every sentence we say with slow and clear pronunciation. Her vocabulary is growing with an incredible speed at the moment.

The latest added words are: leksaksaffären (=the toy store), bilmekanikern (=the car mechanic) and kontrolltornet (=the control tower).

Why stay at simple things like 'look, cat, juice' - when you can be so much more expressive and eloquent!

Saturday, 22 September 2007

Kindy schedule 24-28 September

Term 1 week 4
Me and my environment – Focus activities:
Learning about positional language, up, down, through, over and under
The dinosaur stomp... music and movement
Focus story: "Dinosaurs and all that rubbish"
Recycling waste – looking after our environment
Counting and matching numbers
Matching sizes – focus on medium / middle size
Monday We’re going on a dinosaur hunt, then making a book about it.
Music lesson.
Sound of the week Dd please bring something beginning with Dd for sharing time.

Tuesday ICT – Interactive whiteboard activities
PE - please remember PE uniform and trainers.

Wednesday Moon cake Assembly in the Music room at 8am, followed by a short parade. Please send your child dressed in Chinese clothes
Malay and Mandarin (1)
Making Moon cakes and making lanterns with the Panda class.
Please send in traditional moon cakes for tasting, if you can.

Thursday Malay & Mandarin (2)
Pirate ship play

Friday Swimming 10.00 – 10.30 . All children go swimming together. All staff will be going to the swimming pool.

Friday, 21 September 2007

New link!

If you look down the right under 'links', I have just added a new one, called "Kindy Mouse".
That is Lucas' kindergarten group, and if you click on that one, you can see lots of pictures from Kindy! He doesn't appear in the two first sets, but you can spot him in 'Frog hunt'.

I don't mind that they put photos up on the internet of the kids, actually I think it is kind of nice to be able to see a bit what he is up to all this time he spends there.
But, it is funny though, how different it is from the UK, where we had to sign all sorts of papers to say it was ok for the nursery to take pictures of the kids; and where I wasn't even allowed to take a picture of Lucas and his friends when he left, only of his carers...

I like it though, they document a lot of what they do and that is really nice for us parents!


It's so cool, today we rounded 200 visitors to this blog! Oaw!
I hope there will be many hundreds more!

I am really pleased that you enjoy following our daily adventures down here - please don't forget to leave a little mark sometime, a comment or two; it really makes me happy!

Keep reading - keep smiling! Thank you all of you for your interest in us!

Wednesday, 19 September 2007

About school

Lucas seems to be pretty happy with school so far, which is super! He has got a few new friends and some favorite things to do, and he always has a lot to tell us when we pick him up which is really exciting!

I must say I'm pretty impressed with the school too. When we came on Monday, for his first day, one of the teachers had made a little paper for herself and her fellow colleagues (there are four of them, for currently 19 kids), with Swedish words on it! They really did their best to try and count, and said hello and goodbye in Swedish! So nice! I mean, they didn't have to - he is bilingual after all, but still, it was a nice effort and made me very happy!

Every day the kids are incredibly busy, and when we come to pick them up, there is always a notice on the whiteboard about what they have been up to during the day. Today f.e they had been out in the garden to look for "Froggys friends", they had collected flowers and made them into a collage, they had baked 'crunchy cakes' and they were all face painted like little cats!

I also found out yesterday, that JIS is actually the Royal school. The Sultan's son goes there, and arrives every morning with a loud engine roar in his special Royal Hummer... Very cool!!

Tuesday, 18 September 2007

House hunting Part 2

We have viewed quite a few houses recently, and one thing that is very different here compared to back home is that they don't look after their houses at all in between tenants.

What they do, is just let everything be, until they have found a new tenant; then they paint, redecorate, clean, sort out the garden etc etc.

This means, that when you go around to have a look at houses, they are empty - but in very poor condition most of the time. The gardens are overgrown, the houses are grotty and dirty; full of geecko pooh, dead bugs and other slimy things.
This can be quite hard to see past sometimes, you have to get used to using a great amount of imagination!

By the way, saw one today that was superb - just slightly too expensive and the location unfortunately wasn't perfect. Shame on a great house though. Gotta keep looking!

Monday, 17 September 2007

Today was the day

Today was the day, where we started our new life with getting up super early five days a week; preparing lunch boxes five days a week; driving to school twice a day five days a week; remembering which day we need to bring the swimming gear, the PE kit, the library bag...; continuing being so proud of our big little boy!

Lucas was so excited this morning, he could hardly wait to get to school. He wore his uniform with such pride, and carried his backpack and lunch bag all by himself.

He fitted right in, took part in all the activities and seemed to enjoy being amongst the other kids. I only stayed for half an hour! At pickup, they told me he had been just fine, and he had found himself another little friend who apparently is just as load as our boy...

Unfortunately, he came home with sore feet, from wearing his new school shoes all day, poor little man. Tomorrow they have PE, so he will be having his sneakers on, hope that will be better.

Look how gorgeous he is!

First day at school, originally uploaded by MrsW BN.

Here is our school boy.

First lunchbox

First lunchbox, originally uploaded by MrsW BN.

Here is my first efforts in lunch box packing. Apparently ok, since it came home empty!

Off to school

Off to school, originally uploaded by MrsW BN.

All ready to leave home.

Our big schoolboy

Our big schoolboy, originally uploaded by MrsW BN.

Look how grownup he looks!

Outside Kindy

Outside Kindy, originally uploaded by MrsW BN.

Here he is, all ready to go! Outside his Kindy.

Sunday, 16 September 2007

Our friend the Superhero

One of the first days we were here, before we had really met anyone, the phone rang and the conversation that followed sounded something like this:
Nathan: -"Hello?"
(Someone on the phone apparently giving some good news)
Nathan (happily) -"Superduper!"
Lucas (looking at me with big eyes and excitement in his voice) -"Mamma, det är en suuuperhero on the phone!!" (= Mummy, it's a superhero on the phone)

It wasn't, it was Nathans collegue Will. But since then, he is known as nothing else than "Superhero Will" by Lucas, who is mighty impressed by him - although he did ask us today, why Superhero Will doesn't have a cape...

(We are happy that all we need for entertainment for Lucas' birthday in January, is to convince Will to come along in some superhero leotards and a cape, and Lucas will be in heaven!)

Saturday, 15 September 2007

The charm of novelty

You know how when you move to a new place or change environment for a while, everything is so exciting and intriguing just because it's new - then you become used to it and it is not so exotic anymore, just your every day life.

I remember when I first came to the UK, I was fascinated about so many things, that later on became just normal to me.
For example, the amount of roundabouts in that country, the abundance of traffic signs, the overload of information via the loudspeakers in any train station or airport, the fact that they had people packing your bags at the supermarket, that people who could have been my grandmother worked in McDonald's and many many more "little things".

I don't want to get used to Brunei! I want to keep the fascination I am experiencing at the moment. I want to keep discovering funny, intriguing, curious, different little things. But I guess it is inevitable, eventually everything here will feel normal too.

I will try to keep my mind fresh though, so that I still can be intrigued from time to time!

The $6 dollar haircuts

The other day we went to the $4-man, to get the boys hair sorted. My oh my, was that an experience!

First I want to say, that our son is exeptionelly good at having his hair cut. He sits perfectly still, and does exactly as he is told (for a change). He was quite fascinated by the fact that he got to sit on big pillows, and be covered by a huge purple tent.

But then, the haircut... It was a proper barbers haircut, even for Lucas, where they first took the worst with a trimmer, then cut with the scissors and finished off around the edges with a razorblade! Then they got the thourough brushing, grooming and combing, the sweaping of the face, and even a hot towel to wipe away the hair bits with!
Nathans haircut got finished off with a bit of arm- and shouldermassage - all of this, for $6 (€2.90/21DKK/27SEK/£2), for the both of them!!

Our own Harry Potter

Yesterday while viewing some houses we had a slightly dramatic experience.
They always have huge understairs storage cupboards here, that you can basically walk in to. Yesterday while we were upstairs we heard Lucas and Linnea playing downstairs - and all of a sudden we hear Linnea complain in a bit more intense way, so we went to see what had happened.
She had locked herself in the understairs cupboard!!

There was no key for it, and it had one of those turning knob kind of handles, so the only way to get her out was to convince her to turn the handle herself from the inside...

I can tell you it was some sweaty few minutes (she was perfectly fine though!) before she was good girl and came out, all by herself! *Pheuw*
I do think though, that the poor real estate agent was the one having the most stress!

I see the light

After we got kids, our social life did take a bit of a plunge, to say it the least. We did see friends, go to and have dinners in the UK; but they were always planned around the kids - i.e started earlier and ended earlier etc...

I can now see the light again! I think our social life is about to return!!

Down here, there is a very big expat community, and social life is very important. I have come to understand only in these few weeks I have spent here already, that you can be exactly as busy as you want to be. There is always things to do, people to see, functions to go to and so on.
It's great!!!

Today, we asked our part-time amah to babysit for us, while we went out for dinner with six other couples at a very nice restaurant not far from here. Not only was the company absolutely great ( I love the mix of people here, we were Swedes, Kiwis, British and a German!) and the food totally yummy (and cheap, only $50 per couple!) - but everything had gone so well back at the house. Something that makes time-alone-deprived parents very happy to hear!

So, this was the first (of I hope many, many) night out, and it feels suuuper!

Friday, 14 September 2007


Yesterday was the first day of Ramadan. For us ex-pats it doesn't affect us much, other than you have to be extra careful in the traffic (cause they don't eat and drink, their reactionspan is not as good) and avoid endning up in any discussions or things alike (their mood is not the best) - and, avoid going out to eat, cause everybody else is out as soon as sun goes down.

Ramadan goes on for a month, ends on the 12th of October.

Thursday, 13 September 2007

Another first, kind of

Today we went down to the Empire, to meet up with a Swedish girl I had been emailing with before getting here; we had lunch there together with her and her family.
It was a really great afternoon, the kids went swimming forever (and Linnea had another accident...*sigh*), it was super relaxing.

It was our first time down at the Empire, although we are planning to become members, which you need to be to come there (unless you are coming like we did today, as someones guest). The membership also allows you to play golf there, and use the gym - amongst other things.
Most people just come there and hang out; it is perfect for the kids, with a little lagoon, sandy beach, shallow water, turtle pool, kids club and more.

(We did stay at the Empire on our way to NZ in February, hence today was not the very first time)

Linnea said

Actually, our daughter is talking so much already, that I need to start to post her "funnies" too! Like this one, sometimes you are really happy your kids are bilingual...

The other day we went to the pool before we went and saw some houses. Linnea had an accident in the pool (the superduper swimpants caught it all, but still, very yucky...) and later when we met the real estate lady she happily told her:

-"Nea bajsat... kissat... poolen, badat!" (=Linnea pooped and did a wee in the pool while bathing)

The real estate agent just smiled since she understood nothing, and said "Oh so cuuuuute she is!". She should've known...

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

Lucas school

Today we have been to visit Lucas school, Jerudong International School - or JIS, as they call it here. Actually, he is going to go to Kindergarten now for a year, before he starts proper school, but everybody seems to refer to it as school anyway.

We said hello to his new teacher, and had a play in his room. We also visited the library, cause the go there once a week; we saw the swimmingpool since they do swimming every Friday - and the music class and ICT (computing) room, which they also do! Yes, they are busy, busy!

We also went past the school shop, and bought his uniform (!), dark red/burgundy polo shirt, and dark blue shorts. And a special outfit for his PE (gymnastics) too, white polo shirt, and dark blue sports shorts. He is going to look so cute! Photos will follow on Monday of course.

Lucas didn't want to leave once I had finished talking to his teacher, so I trust he will be just fine on Monday. He is really looking forward to meeting some new friends!

Tuesday, 11 September 2007

House hunting

As you know, we are living in acomodation provided by RBA. It's perfectly fine albeit a bit small, for us, since we are planning on having lots of visitors! ;)

You can stay here as long as you want to, but most people tend to look for their "own" house (rented, foreigners are not allowed to own property here); either within the RBA allowance or you can of course add on as much as you please out of your own pocket.
We are in no hurry though, we would rather find the house that is perfect for us - in style and layout, and locationwise, than stress into something half-good.

But some of you have asked what kind of houses we are looking at. How do the houses look like in Brunei. Well, we are looking at houses kind of like this one which we saw yesterday:

And this house is WITHIN the RBA limit (which is $1800=£580, 6400DKK or 8000SEK)!!!
We havn't found the perfect house yet though. Will keep you posted!

Play it again Sam

Our bedtime routines have really gone out the window the last few months, and it has only gone from bad to worse, to really terrible. We need to get them back!
I used to be able to go and sit with Linnea in her room, while she had her milk, and then put her down in her bed; say goodnight and walk out of the room. She then fell asleep by herself within no time at all.

At the moment, it looks something like this:
I sit with her and read her a story while she has her milk. Then (if she gets it her way) I'm supposed to lie down beside her, hold her hand and sing her the Swedish song "Lille Katt" (from Emil), but not all the verses so I at least could get some variety - no, no, just the first one about the cat; over, and over and over again...
She has even learned how to say "en gång till bara" (=just one more time)! Most of the times though, I fall asleep before her...

So, we are trying now, to get her back into her old ways. I sing the song once (sitting on the end of her bed), and then walk out of the room. It doesn't work very well though, since she is now in a big bed. She swiftly climbs out of it and comes to find me...
But, hopefully we will get there, eventually!
By the time Lucas starts school and we all will have to get up at 06.20 or earlier (!), they will probably be so knackered at nights they fall asleep without any problems!

Monday, 10 September 2007

Lucas said

I just saw Lucas cough a little bit, pull his arm behind his back to pat his own back - and then he said:
-"Tack så mycket handen!" (= Thank you hand).

Very polite my son, when he wants to.

Xmas is saved!

Lucas is really, really into his Lego and has been for a long time. Lucky for us, we have our own dealer in the shape of one of the VPs of Lego (!), Lucas' Godfather Thomas in Denmark - but every now and then you need to expand the collection, and don't have time to wait for the next Danish delivery.

So, I was happy to discover in one of the big shops yesterday, that they did have all the new Lego (even the tank station that I want! :)) we are collecting.
Cool, xmas is saved!

Sunday, 9 September 2007

Meet the hacker!

I am actually very proud of myself having got this blog up and running in such a short time! *Pat on the back*
I've had to ask for help every now and then from my far more technically advanced cyber-friends, and from Nathan - but most of it I have managed to do by myself! It's actually quite easy nowadays, with codes ready to just cut-and-paste and loads of helpful info on the net.

Tonight I managed, after many hours, to get my visitors counter going *yay*, so I can keep an eye on you! ;)

Now I wonder, what else would you like to see on here?
As you have understood by now, this is not a super informative blog, it is more like a diary - but I thought, for those who wants more practical information about Brunei or southeast Asia, I can put it in the links for example. So what links would you like to see? What is missing?

Home improvement - Before

I did a bit of home improvement last night. I got sick of having toys absolutely everywhere, so while Nathan was at work, I took matter into my own hands, and rearranged a bit.
This is how the living area looked before (actually, even before me and the kids turned up, hence the lack of scattered toys...) - with the tv out of the picture to the right. Imagine it with toys all over. So this is before...


And this is after...

I kind of split the area in half, where the sofa and sofatable used to be, so that the kids would get their own space a bit. Trying to implement the rule that no toys in no other place than in their little corner...
It seems to have worked, Lucas discovered his new space this morning, then we went out for a shop and the first thing he said when we got back was "Can I go in the playroom Mamma?"!

Closer look of the playroom

This is a closer look of the "playroom" itself". I put the big sofa table in there, for the kids to play on, and all the rest of their things. Took me ages to build all the Duplo...

View from playroom

And this is the view from the far corner of the "playroom" overviewing what is now the lounge, and the dining room in the back.
The tv will actually move from that wall to the left wall, so that we can see it also from the dining table. It is nice to have childrens tv on at breakfast, or news, if the kids aren't there!

Saturday, 8 September 2007

Five things

Five good things with this house:
- The shower is really powerful, I like showers with a bit of 'oumph'!
- It doesn't have carpets, makes it easier for a lot of the play for the kids.
- The location is super, have I understood now that I'm starting to find my way around a bit.
- Loads of storage space, see previous post.
- It gets cleaned by someone else! ;)

Five bad things with this house:
- The kitchen is really dark, cause no light reaches in to it's tiny window. Have to turn on the lights even in the middle of the day.
- It doesn't have carpets, when the kids shout or scream, it echoes like mad - we need to buy some rugs, urgently!!!
- The "garden" is a jungle/swomp, and I'm a bit afraid of the not-so-friendly-animals that might come close to the house...
- The livingarea layout isn't very good, the toys are unevitably taking over the whole of the living area.
- The fridge is far too small for a family of four. Need to go to the shop far to often, cause there is no room for a weekly shop.

Lots of firsts

At the moment we are having lots of firsts. Today we had:

* First time at the big mall. Not very impressive, but at least it had a few shops that could be interesting. And of course, we went to the scrapbookshop!! *Yay* Talked to the owner, and they are looking for instructors, because at the moment all they are doing is just beginners classes. So next time I go I will bring my albums and show her what I am doing, to see if I'm good enough.

* First time at the local "golden arches" for lunch... They had funny looking chicken nuggets, but the kids munched them happily which is all that matters.

* First time at the RBA club, which is a club to which employees of RBA becomes members automatically. Nothing superfancy, but very nice, and they had a big normal pool, and a big paddling pool. Great! Water didn't go higher than Linneas waist, so I can take them there to swim without actually having to go in myself if I don't want to. Kids (and Nathan) had a great play!

* First time I drove here! I drove us home from the RBA club, since it is just next to the airport, so a route I will probably use quite a lot. Bruneians drive like mad people, best thing is to get in to their rythm and go with the flow, but be very aware at all the other cars.
I'm looking forward to when we get a car sorted, a proper one - then I will take a few days and just go driving around everywhere so I will learn my ways around quicker.

* First party tonight! We are invited to the Scotts for a BBQ. Unfortunately Nathan is flying, so I will have to go alone, and bring the kids as our amah is sitting for the other kiwi family who is going too. Ah well, we will not stay long, hopefully they will behave.

Friday, 7 September 2007


Today I went to my first coffeemorning! It was another of the RBA wives here in Rimba, who had invited a group of maybe 10 other women of mixed ages, to a coffeemorning.
It was nice, and everybody were really friendly - but most of them were slightly older than me. With that I mean, you kind of usually mix with people that have kids the same age or similar to yours, it makes everything easier.
Nice though to get greeted in this way!

This afternoon we went to see the house of one of old Nathans collegues from EZY, and after that we had a bit of thaifood, before we went in to one of the bigger departmentstores. A funny experience!
They kind of had everything (and a lot more) we are used to, but with an asian twist to it. Will try and sneak the camera in one day, so you can see some pics.

Tomorrow I am going to the mall - with or without Nathan!

Thursday, 6 September 2007

Todays big hourray!

My friend Anna (who I knew already from Horsham) came by with some information folders and little booklets today, all about Brunei and what you can do and see here.

In one of them I found a small add for a... SCRAPBOOKSHOP! Yay - I couldn't believe my eyes! Googled to see if they had a homepage, and bingo - found their blog; it seems to be a pretty big shop with all the latest stuff. So happy!

Now, I only need to get there, soon - and browse! (Hopefully Nathan can take me there tomorrow!)

The dream would be eventually, to get a job in there, in the shop, as a designer or maybe a teacher for their crops and courses... *dreaming*...

Dining area, view from sofa

This is the dining area, before me and the kids got here. All furniture in the house is in dark wicker. It belongs to the house, and all houses have the same. It feels a bit like living in a hotel, but it's ok.

Rimba is a executive housing compound, so maintenance and everything is handled from a central office on the grounds. Yesterday they came to check our tumbledryer which didn't work properly, within 3 minutes I had a new one fitted! (It's a change from Leaders... )
If you want any more or less furniture f.e you just give the office a call, and they take care of that for you. Nice!

This is the wardrobe side of the master bedroom. We have moved Lucas desk into our bedroom too, since it is a lot bigger, and he needed room for toys in his room! Still a bit messy, but we are getting there!


There is no shortage of storage in these houses. Quite a change from the UK houses too...

Every bedroom has an abundance of wardrobes - in Lucas room there are two double wardrobes, in Linneas two double AND a single one, and in ours two double plus an "open" one/shelf thingie in the middle.

Downstairs we have a huuuge understairs cupboard, a hallwardrobe that is like a small room (in UK that would be called a 4th bedroom ;)); and then of course we have the amah's quarters, where we have no amah living. It is a normal bedroom, that we use for storage instead. Plenty of room for all the empty boxes!

Our house

This is our house, it's the second one (out of the six( from the right. The one with the little silver car, which is our rental car that the company supplies for 3 months, so that we have the chance to buy our own one.

Wednesday, 5 September 2007


We got surprised by Linnea, again, this morning. She had woken up and came toddling in to our bedroom. Which is no surprise as such - but since she was in a cotbed until we left UK, and couldn't get anywhere on her own, it kind of startles us now, when she comes walking all of a sudden all by herself.
Here we have put her straight in a big bed you see, which she drowns in, but she seems to like it!

Kids slept from 00.00-09.00 last night, so tonight we hope they will go down even earlier, and have even more of a normal night.

First day

Our first day have been quite upside down. Kids were up between 01.00-05.00 last night, and then we slept until 13.00... Had a big play this afternoon at their new friends Ben and Hannah's house, went to the supermarket tonight (a story for itself) and got some chinese yummy takeaway. Another big play with Daddy and now (midnight) they are in bed, hopefully for the night...

Have seen today just outside our house, a huge frog, a gekko and a bat - hm.. not sure if I like this wildlife, but as long as it stays at the friendly animals, it's ok.

Supermarket was suprisingly ok. Had most things and much, much more funny things I have no idea what was. Will have to go back some other day, on my own, and browse slowly! It did have a "naughty room" too - and it has nothing to do with sleazy movies or colourful magazines, but quite simply... pork! All the pork-products (and for some reason all the frozen pizzas?) were in there, and you had to pay for those things separatly, so that the people at the check-out didn't have to handle them.

Tomorrow Nathan is off, so I will send them all out of the house, and try to create some order! Maybe also go down to the pool for a little while.

Amah comes tomorrow too. Lovely! Nathas has arranged a part-time one that we share with some of the other pilot-families. She comes 3 times a week. She charges $7/hour. That is 32 SEK/25 DKK/€3.40 or £2.25 an hour. It's to overcome, really!

Another nice thing here is that they collect rubbish 3 times - a week! (In the UK, it was once a week, but shortly going to be only every fortnight!) Apparently, if you rent your own house and to arrange garbagecollection yourself, you can for a charge of $15 get it collected EVERY DAY! (We have it included here, where we live now of course).

So some things, are really good!!

Monday, 3 September 2007

We are here!!

So, here we are, in our new home!
I don't know how much the kids have understood yet, that we are actually going to live here now - but they seem just happy seeing all their toys again. They have been busy all afternoon playing with everything at once, house looks like a mess...

We took the chance yesterday morning and went out to the airport. Got really lucky and got two buisnessclass seats from London to Dubai - and then a seat each on the night flight from Dubai to Brunei. See, that's the way of travelling!!

Nathan managed just to meet us at the airport, before he had to go to work. He was standing just outside the aircraft in his uniform (and his shiny hat :)) when we got off, and the kids didn't see it was him at first, but just said "Hej Piloten!" to the nice pilot standing there waving at them!

So, a friend brought us home to the house and we have been discovering it all by ourselves this afternoon.
I have unpacked, a bit, it is all just a mess. I kind of need to start rearranging Nathans "systems" before I can get anything in to wardrobes and drawers! ;)

Haven't been outside since we came, but it was 28 degrees when we landed this morning, and rained a bit.
House is nice, but only has 3 bedrooms, so we need to look for something bigger, eventually. The amah came this afternoon, and she played with Lucas while Linnea and I had a snooze - he was too busy for sleeping. We will see how long he will last tonight..!

Ah well, just a short update. Pictures will follow once I am just a tiny bit more sorted! Promise!

Sunday, 2 September 2007

Saturday night, update

Ok, so we have confirmed seats on MONDAY!
Going from 3 seats in buisness, to just 2 in economy, after three days... ah well, at least we are getting there! (*Need to stay positive, need to stay positive*)

We are going to try tomorrow though, we are on standby list. Might be nice with a little trip out to the airport, as a change to the hotel. We are all going a bit stir crazy here...

Saturday, 1 September 2007

Still here

I'm sorry about the previous post, I still haven't learned how to put a link in, so you can just click on it.. You will have to copy and paste for now!

We are still here, in the hotel, at Heathrow. Boohoo.
No further info. Since I am on staff travel, I am last on the list - all paying customers first... never mind I'm on my own with two small kids... There is one flight today, but it is totally oversold; so my hope is for the one tomorrow morning, but we are standby on that one as well. So there you go.

I can tell you this: Park Inn Hotel at Heathrow need a kids corner, desperately...


If anyone is interested, you can read about it all here:

Most of you will probably not really understand all the airplane-lingo; but you can at least admire the photo of what happened to the engine...

Not a good start...

Welcome everybody to our new blog - about our new life, in Brunei!

The kids and I aren't really off to a good start. We should have been not very long from landing in Brunei by now, but instead we are at the moment in a hotel at Heathrow, awaiting further info...

It all went so good this morning, and we each got a nice buisness class seat. Then, just after take-off, we all heard a very loud BANG, and before we knew it, we were on our way back to Heathrow, after just 15 minutes flight.
Apparently, something had fallen out of the motor, and a large flame blew out of it. The airport got completely closed to let us in and to clean the runway from the debris we had dropped. Fire services checked us over, and we got transported to a remote stand. It was completely undramatic though, no worries.

Then, after a long, long while - we had to disembark, go inside, get our luggage, make our way outside, get on some buses, and spend the rest of the day in a hotel. Phu.
So, thats where we are now. Just waiting.
They have said go to bed, there will be nothing more happening today anyway, so hopefully tomorrow morning we will know some more. At least maybe know kind of when, and not just have to spend another day in the hotel...

So, here we are - hopefully I will be back with better news tomorrow!
Once again, welcome!