GOT, HOC…What’s next?

You ever start marathoning a tv series or playing video game and just cannot stop playing until you finish it or reach a point where clicking   pause is acceptable in order to create the needed suspense?

Sure you have.  We all have.

Dear Ned… I moved on.

They become what we lovingly call addictions, like an entertaining drug that hits you right in the feels. You seek to complete it, you cannot rest properly until you do.  Your brain will not let you because darn— it wants completion!  And it’s gonna get it one way or another.  It will nag you even if you’re not purposely thinking of it; the desire, the need, to go and finish is there lying under the surface.

Latest addiction- House Of Cards

This is called the Completion Principle and we all have it ingrained in our brains. Look at that; even when we don’t seek to be outstanding, our nature just demands that we be obsessive in some type of way.  Consciously your mind is on the job- at the office, school or wherever and whatever else you need to focus on that actually matters in life. On the other hand,  subconsciously of course you’re thinking about that moreish tv series.  So if you’re wondering why you’re tired and have a headache at the end of the day, it’s because your mind is putting energy into whatever it is you wanted to finish!

Not only that, it’s distracting and unnerving because you keep thinking “What’s gonna happen next?!”

And it feels like if you don’t get to watching right now you’re missing out on it. But quite honestly it makes no rational sense that you feel that way.  The show’s not gonna go anywhere! It’s not gonna grow legs and run off into the sunset. Just stream it when you get home.

Such is the effect of any brilliant and gripping story. It’s like being a mouse in a field while eagles circle overhead; the moment one of them have you in their talons, it’s all over. It’s got you and you’re not getting away any time soon.

Welcome to the fandom.


A Small Space And Some Pretty Little Things

People who come to UAE for work would probably have shifted accommodation minimum 3 times depending on how long the contract is or in my case for an indefinite amount of time.

Those who are blessed with a good salary package also gets a good crib on top of that; some will have to allot part of their income to renting  a flat and most survive by sharing space (housemates/ roommates).

Being that I moved into a new space  recently,  it was in my mind to already plan the essentials. Calculating every move.  Which items I should take with me and which are the ones to go for storage.

It is a  3 x 3 meter room— what could fit in it?

These were my concerns:
Where my bed should be? Feng Shui much…. Do I need a bed?

Where to put my clothes in?  Do I need a closet?

Is there space for toiletries?

What about my shoes?

I started with a rug.  A smart purchase I believe because it was on sale, 50% off and on top of that it was the last piece- I asked the store manager to give me another 10%.

Then I found this charming and somewhat unusually fashioned sofa bed on Dubizzle for 300 Dirhams ($82).

This is when it dawned on me—i need pillows.  Lots of them.

It’s kind of like a therapy; seeing an empty space with infinite possibilities, no matter what the size and then turning that space into something that can become home.

It has been almost a week now.  I am adding little pieces every day.  Most are my old stuff; some gifted.

And if there’s one thing I really enjoyed, those are the  cheap buys from Daiso, Tchibo and Dragon Mart. I was on a mission and I can say I came out swinging.

Now I have to rest my soul as I begin to settle in because yeah my room has reached it’s limits.


Thinking Twice- On Eating/Blogging

IMG_8763“The struggle is real.”

I hear this line from the girls a lot.

Everyday I get an sms, asking…..

“What to eat?” or

“Where to eat?”

The truth is, I am in the same predicament.

Shall I cook?  Shall I order?

Zomato or Talabat?

Ok, too much thinking. I will just go out.

While driving – I’m contemplating.

Chinese or Indian?

And then when seated…. it’s a like a quiz.

“Chicken or beef Ma’am?”

“Spicy or mild spicy?”

“Cold or room temperature?”

It’s not that I am complaining.

Let me go to the food court instead.

“Here or to go Madam?”

And then comes that thought…

Are my struggles for real?

What about those who have eating disorder?

And the less fortunate?

Those who cannot afford to buy a decent meal.

Those whose land are all dried up.

Those who are at war.

Yes, deep down there is guilt.

But the fact remains I have to eat.

So to end this— let me just cook here at home

and then drink tea.

Hmmmnnn…..Black or green?


At the beginning of this writing I really thought I finally found an opening; a door.   A chance for me to share some of my food photos.   Maybe next time.  So indecisive.




Purse Lover


I do not enjoy spending it.

Does anyone really?

Sure luxury is a thing and people do it to make themselves feel good or on the other side of the spectrum, they do it so it will look like everything is good, but come on! All of us inwardly cringe when we take a look at the price of something we want that’s just a little too rich for our blood. And we buy it anyway. In my case, it needs to wait until the next pay day.

That said, let’s appreciate here the free stuff!

First of all we must agree that using something we got for free is not being cheap.

Let’s say for example you book a flight or a hotel and they give complementary stuff like travel kits or toiletries. You see that the quality and the design of the freebie is actually pretty good. Practically you use it, and most of the time people will ask you where you got it from.

In the case of my everyday purse, I reply-  it’s free from Etihad.  And they’d comment that it’s actually a pretty good purse, not that they think I am some sort of hoarder or moocher.

Really, just because an item was not bought from an upscale boutique it doesn’t mean it’s not good enough.

Just because it doesn’t have some brand name sewed on, it doesn’t mean that’s it’s not stylish.Louise And Rain Purse

It’s not being a cheapskate, just practical.

I can say I applaud companies who give out good freebies. They can have my business.

It’s good marketing. They treat their customers right by handing out “gifts” that are usable.  It’s like planting the seed of trust in that person’s mind, making them subconsciously think, “Hey, these guys were good to me the last time, why not go back?”

It’s smart and a win-win situation for everyone; especially for me!

Plus, it’s just plain nice.

Just when you thought you had it… Winning The 50K Golden Sound.

What are the things normal people obsess over?

How to stay young-looking, how to keep in shape, how to lose weight, and even how to keep in touch with the times so you don’t miss out.

But what did Liz obsess over?

The Virgin Radio 104.4’s 50K Golden Sound contest. Then again I never said she was normal.

Picture this. It’s 6 a.m., what would you be doing?  Probably having breakfast or going on a morning jog but Liz?  Nope!

Last May 25th, she sat in front of that radio listening intently to every word…watching it like it’s a house pet that’s gonna try and run away.  I don’t even remember when all this started, I just realized one day that she’d been having me listen to an audio clip almost every day for almost one week and asking me what I thought it sounded like. It wasn’t anything too drastic until one day she dropped the bomb on me.

The 50K Dirham bomb!

It was a radio show, a radio show of all things! And yet that prize was so, so tempting. So, of course, I fully supported her in her little endeavor or quest or whatever it was but honestly by the end of it I think I might have been just as pissed as she was.

It started May 14th at 10,000 Dirhams, and for every time the golden sound was played with a wrong guess a thousand Dirham was added.


May 24th, when Liz realized she knows the sound but she couldn’t wait until the next day when the winning answer gets to bring home the 50K cheque  (50,000 Dirhams=13,612 USD), so she sent a message to the host of the show.


She din’t sleep well that night.

Morning of May 25th she sent a message to our group chat (to different parts of the world of different time zones)—


The fact was there were too many calls- the whole UAE must have been calling that time.

Note that I did not even try to keep up with this craziness till later… And soon another batch of people’s wrong answers started pouring in and boy did I start to question my sense of hearing. But Liz seemed to still have faith, she said “I got this!” and that having the list of wrong answers was actually a good thing.

She insisted.. she sent a message to Virgin Radio via the messenger app….


Going back  to May 20th  when I scheduled an appointment with an ENT doctor, I remembered she just kept on guessing and grew more and more frustrated.  Like “pull my hair out and save money on a haircut the hard way frustrated” which, in turn, made me frustrated.

Remember back when 4 pics 1 word was huge and your friends would both entertain and torture you by asking for help on a puzzle they couldn’t do? Only for you to end up stumped as well and then you’d spend every waking moment of the next few days wondering just what the hell did those four pictures have in common.

It turned into that for me.

She’d have me listen to the audio again and if I couldn’t pin down exactly what that sound was it gave me an incredibly irritating itch worse than those sweaters your grandma knits for you every Christmas.

I went bonkers! I thought about it in the shower, at work, in the car, on the toilet!

Basically, I got pulled under.

Then finally the clues came.


Immediately right after the first clue we both realized just how wrong we were with each guess. The result was just plain depressing; I imagined Liz with her collection of pillows on the couch as she melted into a mass of human goo and just blankly stared at the wall.  As for me, it would have been funny if I hadn’t realized I was exhausted by the end of it.

In case you are wondering how the sound was like, here’s a link

And of course there was Jake..  the lucky and unassuming Jake. Congratulations!


Why I Didn’t Get Flowers On Valentine’s







February 14th is that time of the year where your man buys a dozen of red roses for about AED 200.00 or more, depending where he gets it from.

But I say bring her to Dubai Miracle Garden on Valentine’s day and you both will get to share the “flowery” experience together for less the price.

Click here for more info

Photo Shooting A Friend’s Wedding… Fingers Crossed

A while back a friend of mine got married, both of them being old and good friends so you could only imagine how excited and euphoric I was for them.

Especially since I was photographer for their pre-wedding.

Whether I was asked or volunteered or volunteered myself for the role; I don’t exactly remember, but either way I enjoyed every second of it. Given, I’d never done it before and it would be my first foray into photography for other people and one of, if not the most, important event in their lives (no pressure there) but really, it’s fun to try new things.

And I did have fun. It was all so beautiful and wonderful. The place we chose was a very quiet park in Green Community DIP, a place teeming with life and colorful flora, so there was practically no need to decorate. Bright and cheery was the theme, things that reflected the nature of my two dear friends and their relationship but also quaint and simple because truly it doesn’t take extravagance and material possessions to nurture a good relationship.

I wasn’t nervous if I remember it right (on wasting their time and mine and of course the “moment”) , because these two were my friends, people I care about and hold close to my heart.  It was a labor of love.

Prenup Photo Shoot www.louiseandrain.comReception Photo Shoot