We know we are put on this earth for a finite period of time,
but when we are called to go, it never ceases to shock. This past week, we lost a colleague. On Monday, our graphic designer left to go home slightly early as she said she wasn't feeling very well. On Tuesday morning she had convulsions in the office and we called in the medics to take her to the hospital. On Wednesday, although seemingly conscious, she wasn't able to communicate with anyone. On Thursday she had an MRI scan which showed swelling in the brain and her blood pressure continued plunging. That evening, she was gone. She was just 36 years old.
It is always sad when someone passes away but I always think the pain is even worse if that person is someone young, someone who should have his/her whole life ahead. There can be nothing more tragic than a parent who has to bury or cremate his/her child. But at least in this case our colleague did not have to suffer and the end came fast.
Life, however, goes on for the living.
Last week we were closing the March issue, which meant I had to be in the office so was not able to join in as many events as I wanted to. As it was the lead up to Chinese New Year, I attended some parties to celebrate the lunar new year. The first was at Central Chidlom, which was held in conjunction with the China Cultural Center and Siam Commercial Bank. The highlights were a duel between two lion dance teams on poles, a show by female dancers from the Chinese embassy and a performance by Thailand’s longest dragon, at 149 metres. The stage was set up in the middle of a Chinese market for those who felt the need to shop after the presentation.
EmQuartier also put on a good show...
Johnnie Walker Blue Label X Page Tsou
Another event I went to was also Chinese New Year related, hosted by Johnnie Walker at Sing Sing Theatre to launch its limited edition Blue Label in a bottle designed by Taiwanese artist Page Tsou to welcome the Year of the Dog. The bottle with its lacquered blue print and metallic accent of three dog breeds is definitely a collector’s item.
I also went to a lunch at the Santipongchai's, a tradition to celebrate Chinese New Year and also the birthday of matriarch Suree. Every year the children, Somsri Hansirisawasdi, Netra Ruthaiyanont and Winn Santipongchai, organise the event for their mother, who is now 96 years old. Originally from Myanmar, the family’s lunch always features Burmese noodles, something not easily available in Bangkok, so is always very well attended.
ML Poomchai Chumbala also hosted lunch at Four Seasons for Indian ambassador Bhagwant Singh Bishnoi and his wife Rupa. As they are vegetarians, the menu consisted of Chinese vegetarian dishes, something different to celebrate the Chinese New Year. ML Poomchai invited the lion dancers to make sure the new year would be an auspicious one for everybody.
I found myself wearing red the whole of last week...
as that is the auspicious colour for Chinese New Year, and also for Valentine’s Day, which fell in the same week. Thank you Krispy Kreme for the box of Valentine’s doughnuts with specialities such as the Oreo cookies and strawberry heart, sprinkled heart and happy heart treats.
And how did I spend my red heart day?
By partying at Escape, the latest chill out rooftop night spot at EmQuartier. With both indoor and outdoor spaces, it is a huge area with bar and dining facilities that are sure to be a hit with Bangkok’s nightclubbers. The brains behind this fun station is, of course, Supaluck Umpujh, who was involved in every step of its development, just like she is with everything else at the Emporium/EmQuartier.
(Previously: Naphalai's Diary: February 4-11)