To Change or Not to Change?

Zounds managed to contact his friend who had his wedding at Hyatt end of last year.  His friend confirmed that he only paid a $4k deposit and there was no 50% pre-dinner instalment nonsense.  Zounds suggests that I call his friend’s coordinator instead.  Darn.  Now I’m not sure if I should:

1) Call the more experienced staff (aka "Hansem") that was supervising Brilliance and ask him to take over because I do not wish to deal with people who blind me with their stupidity, or

2) Call the other coordinator that served Zound’s friend.

The plus point about contacting Hansem is that he was copied in on our email exchange with Brilliance and thus should be aware of what has been promised to us.

The downside is – what if he was the sly one pulling the strings and getting Brilliance to squeeze Iceman and I into committing to a lousy package?

How how how?

Blinded by Radiant Stupidity

I’m really kind of pissed off now.  Iceman and I took a look at Swissotel Merchant Court just now and we concluded that our preference would be to go with Hyatt.  However, 3 things that the banquet manager at Hyatt (Ms. Brilliance) said / did is making my blood boil. 

Firstly, she told Iceman and I that she has blocked the dates we want and the deadline is 13 June 2008.  This deadline then shifted for no reason to 9 June 2008, but I got it changed to 10 June 2008. 

Secondly, Brilliance told me today that to secure our booking tomorrow, we need to pay $5k deposit, followed by 50% of the outstanding balance 1 month before the wedding dinner, and the rest the night of the dinner.

I felt that this was strange because no other hotel has any requirement on payment to be made 1 month before the dinner.  I did a check with 4 other friends and confirmed that this is unheard of.

Thirdly, Brilliance told us previously that when we confirm the booking with Hyatt, she will prepare the documents required for us to sign.  During our tele-conversation this afternoon, I asked Brilliance to prepare the said contract.  However, 2 minutes after we ended the call, Brilliance called me to say that there’s nothing to prepare since we negotiated the terms of the contract over email and thus everything has been captured.

I told Brilliance frankly that I’m not sure what is the norm when it comes to booking a wedding dinner venue but if this is the norm, then ok.  However, having done a check with friends, it seems that this is absurd because w/o a contract, how will we verify what the hotel has agreed to provide?  Moreover, my concern is that if Brilliance resigns or gets terminated (given how stupid she appears to be), will Hyatt honour email exchange with an ex-staff?  Email exchange, while providing some form of "evidence", is not an enforceable contract. 

So now I’m thoroughly annoyed with Brilliance, who I suspect is a really really new staff.  That’s probably why there was a more experienced staff supervising her presentation to us last Tue.

I must say she spoke eloquently and has pretty decent English.  Sadly, her "brilliance" blinds me. 

—————

P.S. Should I call Hyatt’s main line and ask for the more experienced staff to serve us?

‘Brilliance’ Equals Not ‘Brilliant’

Iceman and I will probably be going with Hyatt for our wedding dinner in Singapore because the brand name is good and they have managed to accommodate most of the requests we put forth. The name of the banquet manager we’ve been dealing with has a very close meaning to “Brilliance” (as in shining).

Anyway, Hyatt has agreed to provide 1 complimentary bottle of wine for every confirmed table at the dinner. Iceman and I requested that assuming we had 30 tables, we want the 30 bottles of wine to be split into 15 bottles of red and 15 bottles of white. “Brilliance” agreed that it could be done. In her reply, she said,

“Not a problem for the wine to be split into 15 white & 15 red. Just let us know nearer the date which table should have white and which should have red and we will set accordingly.”

Once I read the email, I was like DUH!?!?!? I couldn’t help it. I mean, won’t Hyatt just prepare 15 bottles of white wine and 15 bottles of red wine, and the waiters will serve guests both white and red regardless of the table they are from, till the wines run out?

Sigh. Obviously, her name may mean “Brilliance” but she is certainly not very “brilliant”.

Better Together

I think finding the right person is akin to finding that glass slipper that fits, like how the prince found Cinderella.  Another description for it would be like wearing that person’s ring and having the ring fit perfectly.

Was having a chat with a church friend recently when she brought up – hadn’t I considered marriage with my ex-bf before?  I told her that he considered it.  I didn’t.  Yes, I’ve mentioned before that the ex wanted to settle down.  However, anyone who listened carefully would have realised that I always said that was what he wanted.  I never said it was something I agreed to or wanted.  If anything, I felt stifled by his constant badgering to settle down.

I’m not one who will commit to something without careful thought – be it agreeing to something or disagreeing, I will always take my time to think about things carefully before I give a commitment.  Just because I don’t say "no" to someone’s persistent planning doesn’t mean I agree to the plan. 

The ex and I once bought "couple rings" from HK before.  Truth be told, I used to like the idea of having a "couple ring".  However, when we did buy them eventually, I felt there was nothing special about it.  I chose the design of the rings… and it fit sort of ok when I was trying it on.  But once I started wearing it, the ring often felt too tight and it gave me a rash.  It was certainly symbolic of how I felt about the relationship – stifling.  I don’t even want to go into what a pain the rash was…

Anyway, I love the engagement ring Iceman gave me.   It fits perfectly.  Definitely not too tight and the size 5 probably won’t fit on anyone else’s ring finger but mine.  Haha.  I suppose the song Better Together would capture how I feel pretty well.  (Now if only darn Singtel would stop ignoring my repeated "Tune Request" and include this song as part of its Colour-Me-Tones database!)

 

 

Am thinking of using this song in 1 of the 2 photo montages I hope to have at the wedding dinner.  Remember you heard it here first!  So in the many weddings that will happen from now till August 2009, if someone else uses this song too, I didn’t copy that person!  Heh.  Am a little sore that my cousin wants to wear a cheongsam for her wedding in May 2009… ‘cos people (relatives) will think that I copied her… when I’ve ALWAYS intended to wear a cheongsam at my wedding.

Shared with her about my favourite combination of engagement ring/wedding band too.  I like either an engagement ring with small diamonds like mine, matched with a plain band with perhaps a single small diamond on it, or a plain engagement ring matched with a wedding band with paved diamonds along the top half of the band (aka the "eternity design").  The reason why I didn’t go for the 2nd combination is ‘cos I already have my mom’s eternity ring so I didn’t want a wedding band the same design.  Now I’m waiting to see if she’s going to go for the 2nd combi.  Ok ok, I know I’m being paranoid and petty but hey, that’s the thing about being a single child you see.  We enjoy being unique – one of a kind (well, at least for important things that matter!)

Anyway, here’s the lyrics for the song Better Together.  🙂

There’s no combination of words
I could put on the back of a postcard
No song that I could sing
But I can try for your heart,
our dreams, and they are made out of real things
like a shoebox of photographs
with sepia-toned loving
Love is the answer
at least for most of the questions in my heart, like
Why are we here? And where do we go?
And how come it’s so hard?
It’s not always easy and
sometimes life can be deceiving
I’ll tell you one thing, it’s always better when we’re together

Mmmm, It’s always better when we’re together
Yeah we’ll look at the stars and we’re together
Well, it’s always better when we’re together
Yeah it’s always better when we’re together

And all of these moments
just might find their way into my dreams tonight,
But I know that they’ll be gone
when the morning light sings
and brings new things
for tomorrow night you see
that they’ll be gone too,
too many things I have to do
But if all of these dreams might find their way
into my day to day scene
I’d be under the impression
i was somewhere in between
With only two,
Just me and you,
Not so many things we got to do
or places we got to be
We’ll sit beneath the mango tree, now

Yeah It’s always better when we’re together
Mmmm, we’re somewhere in between together
Well, it’s always better when we’re together
Yeah, it’s always better when we’re together

I believe in memories
they look so, so pretty when I sleep
Hey now, and when I wake up,
you look so pretty sleeping next to me
But there is not enough time,
There is no, no song I could sing
and there is no combination of words I could say
but I will still tell you one thing
We’re Better together

The Plan – First Cut

Have been busy trying to sort out the sequence of the wedding dinners, etc.  What Iceman and I have agreed thus far is this –

The wedding will be in August 2009.

We will have the JB celebrations on a Saturday – the customary "picking up the bride" in the morning, followed by tea ceremony for Iceman’s relatives, and then dinner in JB.

On Sun, we’ll have the solemnisation at a hotel in Singapore, followed by tea ceremony for my relatives, then dinner.

I’m hoping to hold the celebrations over 1 & 2 Aug or 15 & 16 Aug.  Really depends on the availability of banquet venues in JB & Singapore.

So far, Iceman and I have gone to see Goodwood Park Hotel and we quite like the place (thinking of having the solemnisation & tea ceremony at the pool then the wedding at the Windsor Ballroom).  Goodwood’s minimum of 25 tables and max of 35 tables also suits the number of guests we’ll have nicely.  Our initial count is 30 tables +/- 2 tables.  What we don’t like, is the price.  Haha.  At $1100 per table, it’s a little above our budget of $1000 per table. 

We went to see Orchard Parade Hotel too… and we didn’t mind the ballroom though it received some flak from online wedding forums.  However, when we went down, the ballroom was set up for 27 tables and it looked kind of tight already.  I think it’ll be too cramped if we had to squeeze 30 tables inside the ballroom.  Sigh.  The price was good though!  About $800 per table?

Will be checking out Regent Hotel, Orchard Hotel and the Grand Hyatt this coming week.  Hope we find something nice!

I’ve also signed my bridal studio package.  Will be going with French Bridal ‘cos I like their white gowns.  Managed to get them to agree to doing a made to measure evening gown for me but I’ll have to top up $ for a full lace or embroidery gown.

For the actual day photography (for both JB and SG), I’m likely to go with Lightbox Productions.  Their service is very good.  Very personable.

So that’s what we have so far… hope to confirm the date for the SG dinner soon so we can scout for the JB venue.

Iceman & I also roughly know what sort of wedding bands we want.  Something roundish, no "tyre threads", simple.

 

bands

 

 

 

Example of what we like.

 

 

 

tyre track

 

Sample of what Iceman terms as "tyre threads".  Hehe.  Actually I don’t mind the tyre threads but he doesn’t like it.  Haha.

No offence to anyone who has this design!!

 

 

 

Things are starting to look up really.  There were some things that I planned for w/o any backup plans… like wedding dates, etc.  Iceman always tells me that I should have alternative options but I would just go ahead with what my heart desires.  Thankfully, God has been good.  Things are sorting themselves out and I think I’ve pretty much managed to get what I want (despite some initial obstacles).

I know some friends may think that Iceman & I haven’t dated for very long to be planning to settle down but I was pretty sure from the start that he would be the right person for me.  Long time ago, a friend of mine, YH, told me that "when you meet the right person, you’ll know it".  At that time, I always questioned how was it possible.  It defies logic.  But very early into our relationship, I felt that Iceman would be the right one.  Somehow, I just "knew".  I didn’t want to post this earlier ‘cos it would sound a little silly but I suppose now that we’re settling down, I can say YH – I agree with you!

Lucky

Booze Queen introduced me to this song, "Lucky" by Jason Mraz and featuring Colbie Caillat.  Didn’t really grab my attention the first time I heard it.  But the more I listened to it, the catchier I found it.  :)  I know I’m jumping the gun here but I think it might make a good song for the photo montage at the wedding dinner… haha.

 

 

 

Do you hear me
talking to you
Across the water
Across the deep blue ocean
Under the open sky
Oh my, baby I’m trying

Boy I hear you in my dreams
I feel your whisper across the sea
I keep you with me in my heart
You make it easier when life gets hard

Lucky I’m in love with my best friend
Lucky to have been where I have been
Lucky to be coming home again
Ohhhohhhohhhohhohhohhhohh

They don’t know how long it takes
Waiting for a love like this
Every time we say goodbye
I wish we had one more kiss
I’ll wait for you, I promise you I will

Lucky I’m in love with my best friend
Lucky to have been where I have been
Lucky to be coming home again
Lucky we’re in love in every way
Lucky to have stayed where we have stayed
Lucky to be coming home someday

And so I’m sailing through the sea
To an island where we’ll meet
You’ll hear the music fill the air
I’ll put a flower in your hair

Though the breezes through the trees
Move so pretty, you’re all I see
As the world keeps spinning round
You hold me right here right now

Lucky I’m in love with my best friend
Lucky to have been where I have been
Lucky to be coming home again
Lucky we’re in love in every way
Lucky to have stayed where we have stayed
Lucky to be coming home someday
Ohhhohhhohhhohhohhohhhohh
Ohhhohhhohhhohhohhohhhohhohhohhohh

hurdle 1: who goes first

for those who do not know, Iceman’s Malaysian so we decided that to be fair to relatives on both sides, we’re going to have 2 wedding dinners.  unfortunately, things sort of hit a snag ‘cos Iceman’s dad, being a very traditional person, feels that the dinner in JB ought to be the main dinner (in terms of size), and it also needs to be held before the SG dinner.  (hey, initially, his parents thought it’ll be good enough just to have a dinner in JB & ferry my relatives over but Iceman understands that it’s important to me to have something for my family & friends in SG so he insisted on 2 dinners).

to me, whichever dinner is the "main" one doesn’t really matter ‘cos i see both dinners as equal.  i don’t mind having the JB dinner before the SG one though i think it would be a struggle to find enough people to fill the hall in JB given that Iceman and my friends are almost all in SG. 

that said, the first snag we hit today was – how am i going to wear the white wedding gown twice?  for people (i suppose especially parents) who are superstitious, it’s taboo to wear the white gown twice.  but i don’t really care ‘cos i’m going to have 3 gowns for my wedding and i definitely want to wear all THREE gowns at the SG dinner ‘cos that’s where all my friends will be! 

so we talked and talked about it and my bottomline was simple – either let me wear the white gown only at the SG dinner (which would mean then that we would be in a technical default for the JB dinner since that’s the "main" dinner and i won’t be wearing the white gown at the "main" dinner) or let me wear the white gown twice.

poor Iceman… he was caught between his parents & me… but he came up with a brilliant solution.  he suggested that maybe we could do a lunch reception in SG, then the JB dinner on the same night… and i could then wear the white gown twice without offending any taboos!

it will be a tiring day… but hey, i’m ok with that as long as i get to wear all my gowns in front of my SG guests.  but then we spoke about it some more & it occurred to me that maybe wear the white wedding gown isn’t going to be that meaningful after all.  i mean, i’m not going to walk down the aisle in church… my dad’s not going to give me away at the altar… so why bother with the white wedding gown? 

hence Iceman & i decided that we’re going to chuck the western tradition all together.  hey, we’re Chinese & we’re proud of it!  so we decided we’re going to camp it up!  cheongsams, the kua, the chinese gown for guys & mandarin collar shirts are going to be the order of the day.  (bridesmaids/jie meis take note ya?  :P).  if i have to spend an extra $500 to tailor cheongsams for my bridesmaids/jie meis, i will!  with the right music, the whole event can be quite funky actually.  unique, different, light-hearted & funny.  i’m liking the thought of it more & more.

so the game plan now is to convince Iceman’s parents that since my side will have a wedding lunch instead of the full scale dinner, they should give in a little too & allow the bride’s side to have the tea ceremony at the lunch first.  (this is definitely not in accordance to tradition).  of ‘cos we’ll serve tea to Iceman’s parents & any relatives that may come to SG for the solemnisation that’ll be done before the lunch.  but for the relatives that aren’t in SG… or if it’s only his parents who’re coming to SG for the solemnisation + lunch… hopefully they’ll agree to this order of things.

sigh… i mean, worst case scenario would be we’ll do a dinner on Sat in JB, then another one on Sun in SG… but both Iceman & i felt that it won’t be very fair to the jie meis & brothers ‘cos that’ll mean we’re going to have to ask them to block their entire weekend for us… and possibly take leave on Mon ‘cos it’ll be a very tiring weekend.  if we can have everything on just 1 day, it’ll be loads better.

so… pray for us?  i think a wedding is really really difficult to plan ‘cos we need to take care of so many people’s sensitivities.  if we could plan it our way, it’ll be so easy.  as it is, i’ve almost decided on my bridal package after looking at just 1 studio – French Bridal.  i think the hotel shouldn’t be difficult either ‘cos both Iceman & i are very decisive people… and i think judging from our negotiation skills today, we’ll do ok negotiating terms with the bridal studio & the hotel. 

now… just to cross the first hurdle… i need to pray… very… hard.

My Ring

22052008485 This is my ring.  :)  I’m very pleased with it of course since it’s made to my specifications.  Heh.  However, I didn’t quite get to see the end design before it was made… and am now toying with the idea of whether I should change it from a 4-claw solitaire setting to a 6-claw setting so the solitaire looks more roundish instead of squarish.  How how?

Hmm… *deep in thought*.