Saturday, November 19, 2005

4 Days on and I have finally found a home for myself! Relief is not enough to describe how happy I felt. That night I simply had trouble sleeping. The excitement of finally finding a roof over my head is like a huge weight off my shoulder. Oh! Gone are those days of agonizing under the stifling heat sweating over directions and trying to picture myself living in horribly expensive apartments with weird owners. Some rooms looked like they’ve just been converted from a store room, some were really noisy as they were situated next to highways, or had ugly slum views, with patchy tin covered roofs, uneven concrete and other people’s rubbish piles.

It turned out that we were looking at the wrong area.

Thank god I found this gem of an apartment. Nice area, quiet, central to shopping centers, close to my work place, spacious, well equipped facilities and a quiet female room mate! And it's
one of the cheaper rooms I came across!! I'm enjoying the blissful air-conditioning at the moment. Ahh the breeze is soothing. I can't believe I've actually reverted backwards, from a heat-lover to a heat-hater. Well, I still love the warm weather, but I reckon I'd go insane without a bit of air-conditioning here in Singapore.

xiao ying @ 1:05 AM.


Monday, November 14, 2005

Here I am, in Singapore at last.

The last few hours on the plane were spent in a daze, reality did not exist on the magical portal with wings that was transporting me from my old life to this new one. In between getting kicked in the foot and waking up to adjusting my position for slumber, I tried to pretend that I'm not heading alone into a world of the unknown.

For weeks I've been excited about coming to Singapore, yet the last few days anxiety built up. To be totally honest, that last few hours I sat on the plane, fatigue was mixed with dehydration from crying when saying goodbye and fear. I fantasized about getting off the plane and arriving at Melbourne again, I even wondered at one stage: why the hell am I here? What the hell was I thinking? God I missed my family, and Neil.The goodbye scene at the airport was surreal like that in a movie. Ok so tears were involved. A guy at the customs looked at my teary eyes and pointed to the huge yellow ducky I had in carrying in my arms. "What's its name?" He asked with humor, to which I replied, "Peckle" in my 8 year old voice. I did feel like an 8 year old then, I felt so lost.

Talk about culture shock on my first day. I knew Singaporeans had an accent, I didn't know it was this hard to understand what they were saying! Perhaps due to the accent, I speak mandarin 70% of the time now because it's easier to communicate this way. Another shock was how fast customer service was here. Ques were long and workers were under stress to work fast. Impatience like this was seldom seen in Australia, they just hurried me along and said "next!" before I begin with my second enquiry!

Aside from that, I suppose I'm getting used to it.

xiao ying @ 1:03 AM.


Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Grew up in a small town
And when the rain would fall down
I'd just stare out my window
Dreamin' of what could be
And if I'd end up happy
I would pray
Trying hard to reach out
But when I tried to speak out
Felt like no one could hear me
Wanting to belong here
But something felt so wrong here
So I prayed I could break away

I'll spread my wings and I'll learn how to fly
I'll do what it takes till I touch the sky
And I'll make a wish, take a chance, make a change
And break away
Out of the darkness and into the sun
But I won't forget all the ones that I love
I'll take a risk, take a chance, make a change
And break away
Wanna feel the warm breeze
Sleep under a palm tree
Feel the rush of the ocean
Get on board a fast train
Travel on a jetplane, far away
And break away

Buildings with a hundred floors
Swinging round revolving doors
Maybe I don't know where they'll take me
But, gotta keep moving on, moving on
Fly away, break away

Break away
Break away

I woke up this morning to the sound of the radio. In my groggy state I heard this song playing in the background. How appropriate, I thought. I've been thinking more and more about Singapore these days. As the final day draws near, talk about mixed emotions! Staring at the ceiling the other night while trying to sleep, I felt a pang of fear rising from within as I realised that I will be leaving my family for the first time. That's quite a milestone I think, a bigger one than finishing uni and starting work.
Compiling past photos to take with me to Singapore was a trip down memory lane. I can't help but gingerly read those letters/cards sent to me from close friends. Sadness is replaced by gratefulness and joy when I lament on how fortunate I am have met such wonderful people. Beneath those smiling faces, you can sense genuine happiness. As with any departure, the hardest bit is always saying goodbye. I'm not sure how I will react on the day, people ask me how I will feel about saying goodbye to Neil. I haven't thought of that yet, because I guess I'm scared thinking about it.

Then yesterday, as I chatted with a friend over a yummy icecream under the shades in the lovely spring melbourne weather, I got very excited and happy at the prospect of leaving Melbourne. Think! A world full of possibilities, adventures, people to meet and the challenges to learn from! Yes, it will be good for me. Just as the lyric dictates:

I'll spread my wings and I'll learn how to fly
I'll do what it takes till I touch the sky
And I'll make a wish, take a chance,
make a change And break away


xiao ying @ 4:04 PM.