So I’m right.
Security guy: Smart Earth citizens don’t believe in religion, because of the Stable Care System.
So I’m right.
Security guy: Smart Earth citizens don’t believe in religion, because of the Stable Care System.
Started watching a Korean drama a few days ago because I initially thought that was the one that my friend recommended. I never fancied Korean dramas because after some time, it’s just the same plot over again. She recommended a brainy show because I love brainy shows. When I realised it’s a different show, this one here seemed pretty intriguing as well so I carried on with the episode.
It’s been 7 episodes and I’ve always loved the suspense and how the story unravels. But I think, I just found my favourite part of the show. [Spoiler’s alert from this point on]
That instant when I stood at the top of the stairs in the Indoor Stadium, there was a sudden flashback of the scene at Global Day of Prayer 2 years ago.
The prayer session came to an end, and we were about to leave with the crowd. The Praise and Worship Team invited those who wanted to continue praising God to stay with them. 2/3 of the people, including us, got up and moved out of the stadium. Just as we reached the top of the grandstand, my friend turned and asked if I wanted to stay.
So we did. We took the row closest to us. In front of us, the rows were empty. The whole scene was definitely, short of the “right atmosphere”. But you know what, I enjoyed myself so so so much praising God! I love unofficial praise and worship sessions, I love it when we pray when it’s not an “official thing”. And of course, I miss that friend.
When I was there in the hall worshipping God earlier on, I thought about the criticisms of pentecostal worship. I recalled how one of the issues with such worship is that the loud music sometimes clouds the reason why we worship; sometimes we are driven more by the music than our desire for God.
My prayer at that point, then, is that God, captivate my heart. If God can’t captivate our hearts, nothing in this world will do.
Clearing storage means looking back at old photos to either delete or reorganise them. And that inevitably means digging up memories.
We’ve come a long way, my friend.
Just watched this movie. Guess this part of Singapore’s history isn’t as distant for me as it is for my peers. Those kampong houses and farms in the movie are what I used to return to every Chinese New Year when I was a lot younger. Though life often got boring after staying there for a week, but I always looked forward to coming home and seeing my grandparents. Boring because I don’t have my internet connection there, but I really really love returning to my kampong home.
I stopped going back for Chinese New Year visitation since uni started. CNY always took place during the school term and I had no time to go back there, so I’d usually return during my summer break or December holidays. It took some time to get used to spending my CNY in this city and in fact, I’m still not used to it. The festive atmosphere differs so so much over here – or should I say, there’s almost nothing much here.
Back in my kampong, relatives – like super distant ones – would all come to our house to visit my grandparents. I don’t really know them since I only see them once a year. But there’s always these big korkors and jiejies I looked forward to my once-a-year meeting with them. My parents would tell me whenever they were coming over, because they knew I would be excited.
At the back of the house where the kitchen is, there’s my yeye cooking my favourite dishes – well, perks of being his favourite. Ya like for once in my life, I’m someone’s favourite, that feels great. My popo would be in the same corner slaughtering a chicken or cooking other dishes for the family. At the front of the house would be my gugu’s domain. She’s always seen sweeping and mopping the house every year. And there we little kiddos sat, watching the TV, reading books, playing our game boys.
When someone appeared at the door, all of us would be tasked to bring out additional chairs from all over the house for our visitors. The adults would then gather us “each to his own breed”. This is my child, the elder one. And then the others would go, “这么快就这样大了!” The adults would just be talking amongst themselves after that, and we just played amongst ourselves.
At night, we had our favourite pyro-stuff which the adults bought for us. We had this small little rock-like thing that gives off a ‘pop’ sound when you throw it against a hard surface. We also had sparklers to play with too. Tried all sorts of ways to make them as interesting as possible, had all sorts of random competition with each other’s sparklers, and even refused to lend people any flame for theirs :p Some years we had firecrackers too. Man, how many of those my age would have seen and heard a firecracker go off before?
Really enjoyed spending CNY with my family like that, where everyone came together :) That place’s old and to some people, dirty, but this home is my pride. I love bringing my close friends there with me. I love my family :)
Finally updated my Flickr photostream again. My dream is that I’ll get better and better at this photography thing as time goes by, so that one day when I look back, I’ll see the progress through these photos.
Took some photos during Christmas last year, and I’m glad I went to two of the places that are currently closed to the public. First was the Rochor Centre, and then the Tanjong Pagar Railway Station. Made my family go there with me :p Out of the batch, I really like two of them.
Shot this at Rochor Centre. These blocks will soon be torn down to make way for the construction of a new expressway. Gates were everywhere to stop people from entering. Yet, clothes hanging out of some of those windows hinted of a few residents still living in those blocks. This old man here seems to be one of the residents, unlike the rest of us who came here to take our last shots of the colourful buildings. Oh yes, I was surprised to see a rather big crowd that day. Guess I’m not the only one who does such (seemingly boring and old) thing on Christmas day.
To be honest, though, I had never taken notice of this colourful estate in the past 24 years of my life. Not until my friend had a dance concert (with Rochor Centre as their theme) last year and invited some of us to it. The interest was only piqued then, and was piqued even more when more people began to post photos of the estate on their Instagram. I wonder how many of them were like me – not appreciating its beauty till we heard that this rather trademark-worthy heritage will be torn down in time to come. And how many of us really know its history? Well, I don’t.
This brings me to the next photo:
I titled this A Tad Too Late. The Tanjong Pagar Railway Station has been closed for some time. That day was the last day that the railway station was opened to the public. There were interpretives put up to retell the history of the railway station, dating all the way back to the early 1900s. At the side of those signs was this wall filled with the public’s messages written on sticky notes.
At the instant when I saw this note, I thought to myself, “If we really wanted the trains here, they wouldn’t be gone.” Well, I would say there are plans to tear down the train station simply because the trains are hardly in use, so it has to make way for other needs. We have all sorts of transport options now bringing us across the causeway. If we really loved taking trains that much, the station won’t be demolished. Or at least from my understanding of how our government builds this nation, it won’t be. Perhaps, it’s just the good feel of having some relics of the past, reminding us of certain fond memories, that we are trying to hold on to.
The only thing I remember is that I used to love train rides. Well, they were a pain in the neck for the adults – quite literally – because the train rides took longer than the coach rides and probably difficult to sleep in as well. All I remember was the kid-me being really excited to get on board and get a cup of hot Milo. I don’t remember the rest – I didn’t even remember that this was the train station that I took the train from. And it surprises me that all these years I didn’t even wonder where I boarded the train, until that day when we visited the railway station and my mom told me.
Things that are to go remind us of cherishing the what and the who that are before us in this present moment. Because one day they will go. And we will regret, especially when it comes to the who. Unspoken words, unfulfilled wishes and those delayed to-dos.
This is a sidetrack, but somewhat related too. I finally watched Our Times today. Well, my review of the movie is that the ending did touch me and made me tear, but the ending’s a little too idealistic. To get back what you gave up on years ago – how many times does this really happen in reality? Of course we wish for a happy ending like this, but I would think life is more like the ending of You are the Apple of My Eye. I didn’t like the movie’s ending because it’s just so sad and the regrets within the protagonist was deeply felt. Yet, I know that’s just how life is like. And I know, I’m hard to please when it comes to movie endings.
Alright, I actually just wanted to show off my photos a bit, but this post is making my heart feel a little heavy. Time to sleep!
Just met up with some university friends to just chat over lunch. Midway through the conversation, one of them made a sincere apology for what happened in the past and I said, it’s okay.
Finally a sort of closure I guess. I felt a little uncertain in my approach when the conversation geared towards what happened during the Freshmen Orientation Programme planning process. In a way, I didn’t know what to bring up and what not to – in case we raked up unhappy events.
I was the Project Director in the FOP planning. Midway through the planning, a social explosion took place without warning, and I would say this was the main cause affecting my friendships in the course in the years to come. I grew increasingly aware that leadership was not for me and so, I dreaded the fact that I had to step up as the President of the next Student Committee right after the FOP. Life wasn’t easy then because people who didn’t know me disliked me since the camp. I hated the fact that I was in a course with only 50 people because I felt alienated by most of them who heard something from someone else which I had no idea what.
Many things happened in the planning and I guess my Vice Director and I could have defended ourselves. But all those times, I just kept sensing that God was telling me not to take things into my own hands but leave it to Him. And there were in fact times I found it hard to resist the urge to defend myself – and the fact of the matter would have cost some others’ reputation because of certain things they did. But the call was always to not do that, even if that put me at a disadvantage. In my heart, I had wished that some of these people who were angry at me would rise up as project leaders so that they understand the difficulties involved.
At the end of year 3 sem 2, we went to Bohol. I didn’t want to be there travelling with a bunch of people who disliked me. But God spoke to me one day through a Psalm, telling me that He will rescue me. True enough, that trip became the turning point for many of those friendships, miraculously.
Interestingly, when the conversation geared towards FOP today, this friend apologised, saying that when she took on some projects at the community level some time ago, she understood my struggles. Her face turned red as she offered her apologies. It’s really okay because God showed up to save the day when we were in Bohol. In fact, the reason why we could sit down together for lunch (and meals before this) is because of God’s intervention.
What today meant for us was I guess… a closure to things that were previously unspoken? And I’m glad there’s an opportunity like this, because things don’t always turn out this way.
And as I’m here typing this on a bus, I’m reminded of a friend who stuck by my side when I felt unwanted and alone in those 2 years. She came by after FOP, somehow, encouraged me through my presidency in the Student Committee, and celebrated with me when I finally laid down this huge Student Committee rock off my shoulder. I remember there was once a committee member lashed out at me on a group chat, and she found out about it somehow (she didn’t want to tell me how), so she texted to offer her comfort. I’m thankful for this friend. Texted her to say thank you – random, but this is what WX does isn’t it?
It’s been a long way. So many things happened; so many twists and turns along the way. But thank You God for the experiences and friendships forged.