I am currently sitting in what I would term my mother’s frequented salon, unfortunately dying my hair black because VA is upcoming. What a reminder of the painful reality. On a very random note, I think I will hate myself 5 years into the future when I realise that I have stopped blogging about my travels. Why am I so lazy when I have all the time in the world, and why do I blog so much whenever I am supposedly busy?!
I am happy to be back in Singapore but once again I find it really strange that I miss London, because these feelings were never visited one year ago even before I met HT. I miss not just the lifestyle, I miss my neighbourhood and the convenience of everything. I miss how I took self check out counters for granted, how I could walk everywhere I wanted and well yes the weather too. I miss the beautiful parks that I ran along and people I met up with regularly after school. I miss my Korean teachers and schoolmates who regularly attended the lessons too. Over time I guess I developed an attachment to London along with the friendships I made there. When I take public transport in Singapore now it actually feels so familiar and ~right~ that the long period of stay in London truly feels like an extended dream.
It honestly is really difficult to transit back into military life this time and I can be sure that I am not alone in saying this. Starting a military lifestyle was interesting, to the extent of fun even. BMT was fun because I never knew what was ahead of me. Returning back for VA the first time was also exciting because I never stepped on a ship for an extended period of time before, and it was the first time I held (almost full) ownership of a day. This time I am honestly riddled with dread and worry because I do not know what will become of me if I still do not obtain my COC. I also have to obtain my dissertation findings between late June to late July, during the time when I’d still be busy with COC… what if I do not get it? I would honestly be so busy with the shipboard routine that I may not even have time to carry out my dragonfly surveys, much less meet up with HT. What would the inability to get it in my second year VA say about me and my abilities? I fear. There’s only how much you can speak for yourself and your so-called abilities that qualify you to be a scholar when you clearly disappoint as they attempt to check boxes of your achievements on a checklist.
Shortly after my tight dissertation/VA timeline, HT will be going on a 6-week long deployment in mid-August. It really is so unfortunate that he happened to get long sailings during this period when I’m back in Singapore, especially since haven’t been reunited for long. It also seems the case that I won’t have anything much left to do in this time period, especially if I successfully pass my assessment. Why do the timelines clash so badly?
Onto a more positive note, I’ve done a lot since I landed in Singapore approximately 2.5 weeks ago. Most notable events include:
1. Trampoline Park + Delta steamboat
Met up with these chicks for some dimsum and bingsu shortly after arrival and it was nice to catch up!!! again!!! Really miss them.
Then we went to the AMPed Trampoline Park in Jurong together too. It was honestly really fun and one of the most memorable things I have done this entire 2 to 3 weeks. I remember how I initially entered the trampoline area and was actually very scared of stepping into the black areas HAHAHA. Also it was nice because we were the only ones in the entire place so they asked us what type of music we wanted, and I shouted KOREAN KOREAN KOREAN. We really got Korean HAHAHAHA I was half amused and actually really really happy. Poor thing the rest had to be subjected to my (perceived terrible) musical tastes, and not being able to understand any single song at all.
Now everyone finally understands how I feel when English songs keep playing in the background… 😦
We also had a steamboat at Yixin’s house! I had an enjoyable evening from getting the steamboat ingredients to napping on her couch to winning a 5-tai mahjong game BUT WE DID NOT PLAY MONEY!!!!!!! Undercover however was the most memorable because of how stupid everyone’s responses were. Notable responses: alive/bio (Weihan), subject/Science (Ziwei) and small (Jia Jian), for personal laughter purposes. Also featuring a selfie with Jie Ling because I was disturbing her the entire night. I miss making fun of her and her pail in the toilet lolol (inside joke).
It was nice to meet up with the NCC people, especially after having missed out on the gatherings (CNY?) for the entire academic year. I thank Yixin for organising without fail every year, and willingly sacrificing your house because I totally understand how messy things can get.
2. Family dinners
This was the first weekend after my arrival when we went to eat dimsum at Imperial Treasure 🙂 I must have just woken up or something because what kind of smile is that?! Ate so much and over-ordered so crazily, totally forgot this family custom when dining out.
Another “family dinner” occasion when HT treated my siblings to a meal — something he promised a year ago when we first met hehe. We had army stew, although now I would draw comparisons to ASSA in London and I must say that ASSA’s army stew is much better. We also ended up having some coconut ice-cream and they had a funny sign to express the fact that they will be right back — something about picking the best coconuts in Thailand right now. When the staff returned, my brother asked her “why you come back empty-handed, where are the coconuts?” HAHAHAHA what a troll. We went to play at the arcade after that and after spending $20… we managed to redeem a lame keychain. LOL.
Next family dinner was a dinner at Ban Heng Boon Keng, where we ordered this handsome looking roast pig on top of a 10-person set meal (when there were only 9 of us). The bill totalled up to be rather crazy especially with this add-on, it costed near $200+!!! But it seemed that my Dad really wanted to eat this so he went ahead in ordering it.
All 3 of us siblings brought our respective partners and it was interesting to imagine that this would be how it’s like in the near foreseeable future. My mother, at the end of the day, pulled an emotional stunt about how she was upset that all 3 of us will eventually move out and the house would be left with her and my father only. Sorry that I found it amusing, Mom. I will stay as near to Clementi as possible, because after living in such a convenient place there is no way I can move out to elsewhere. We unfortunately didn’t take a picture that day, apart from the food. I wonder why didn’t we, because it would have been excellent for a memory keepsake.
Here’s me with (part of) his family too hehehehe it is not just one-way okay.
3. 21st birthday parties
After regrettably looking at 21st birthday photos on Instagram the whole year, I finally managed to drag my ass back to attend Edina’s and Kenn Hong’s birthday parties.
Took a selfie with Szemin because I was proud to have the same hairstyle (hers was even longer HAHAHA).
Her beautiful dessert table and set-up! I unfortunately arrived late so I stared and was useless most of the time. Glad to meet up with these beautiful 4G girls too — I remember how we called 4G and conveniently left out Kang Tze and Kay Vin who were also at the birthday party HAHAHA.
Kenn Hong’s party! His house was amazing, it was honestly the first time I’ve been to a Singapore home with a lift within the compound. So many bedrooms it wasn’t a joke when Richard said how we would need a map to navigate around the house. It was also nice to chat with the other 74th people once again and laugh/gossip over the same people, especially since they headed to university this year. Their lives are truly interesting as well 🙂
4. Dinners and lots and lots of Japanese food (Chirashidon in particular). Lots.
My first meal: 百米粉 with HT. All the way at Punggol End what the heck because that was the only branch he knew how to drive to HAHAHAHA.
Nakhon at Holland Village after seeing everyone eat it on Instagram and Insta story. Got bitten by some mozzies along the way too.
Walking around the basement of Plaza Singapura eating rubbish just because I can.
The Sushi Bar with HT on the day I sent in my Mac to the Apple Store. Loved the Chirashi don recommended by Dilys and whatever he was eating — some pasta HAHAHA. He loved it. I think we will definitely come back to this place.
Ichiban with my sister and my mother last week when I gladly had a huge set meal after finishing a swim. I finished every single thing on this plate, except the watermelon hehehe.
Indian food with Uncle and Auntie when I finally treated them on one occasion after 20 years. Feels good to enjoy financial independence and to be able to make decisions with my own money.
Imperial Treasure La Mian Xiao Long Bao with HT hehehe. Loved the duck, loved the XLB, and loved the sichuan noodles!!!
Zicha with my family as of late. I loved the you tiao and the pork. The other two dishes which are supposedly healthier as seen in this picture were largely ignored by me :’)
5. Met up with 6/6 classmates.
This was an eventful trip to town on a very rare occasion because we needed to buy some clothes for Caleb to impress since he entered SMU. There was also another occasion we headed out for supper because Gordon manage to drive his Dad’s car that day. Looking forward to our upcoming dinner/supper (whatever it will be) with Ms Chan again 🙂
Reminder to self to blog about post-exam fun in London (including Seven Sisters).