Thursday, March 31, 2005

Brain Freeze...

I can't think... My next post is gonna take awhile... working on it right now... sigh.

Am attending the launching of a new book in half an hour. I do not know the author, nor do I know the title of the book. I think I should make the effort to find out a little bit about them... I'd owe him that much after all the wine I'm about to consume, which is on him...

update: I spent the whole of 30mins at that book launch. I was too sick to mingle and initiate any form of small talk and so I sat in a corner and nursed a tall glass of cranberry juice. BLEH!!!

Tuesday, March 22, 2005


I feel terrible today. I'm so Drowsy!! I have piles of paperwork to plough through but my brain simply refuses to cooperate. This is torture... :( I want to go home and take a nap... zzzzzzzzzzz

73 days and counting...

Monday, March 21, 2005

What a treat!

I am sitting at the computer of, I would say a pretty good friend from university, while he is in the kitchen preparing dinner. I know, HE is in the kitchen preparing dinner. Now I have to say, that is a luxury we women are rarely treated to these days. Finding a guy who can dance is difficult enough, but one who can cook!? (Everything's instant btw, but what the hell... he's still IN THE KITCHEN). No offence to the minority who can whip up an 8 course dinner in a blink of an eye (eg. Village Boy - I've had the privelge several times and I must say every single time was culinary heaven).

OK gotta cut this short... chef's just announced that dinner is ready... I can't wait :)

Wanderlust 3

Just a quick note about Wanderlust 2. My baby read it and commented on the fact that it's fine to have my little slice of apple pie (I prefer it to cake), but I probably wouldn't be able to eat it as well. So hoping that I can run around the world infusing myself with culture and wonderment, not have any backup reserves, and then getting hitched to someone sensible and settled with a career (i.e rich banker), is simply not a fair thing to hope for... I hope no one got the impression that that was my intention. Definitely not. If I've enjoyed myself but have very little or no savings then it's something I am gonna have to live with and work at.

OK, on to something I read today...

The Educated New Village Boy sent me a link to one of thurpentyne's postings, and in it, a friend of his says this...

"We have 30 -40 years to build our career. If you can't do shit in 30 -40 years, you just have to accept the fact that you are simply not cut to do it. BUT we only have 5-6 years in our 20's when we wake up and realise we need to do something and actually go about doing it"

That alone renewed my convictions to pack up and head out into the world. But I have to admit, I do have my reservations. I have never been the impulsive, spontaneous sort. In fact I used to be master organiser, mistress planner... i had to know everything that was going to happen way beforehand. I hated being caught off guard as that made me feel vulnerable, out of control... and that always scared me. I've come a long way since leaving home 5 years ago. I've become much much more tolerant and accepting of sudden changes, and I can now adapt fairly well to new situations. But I know I will never be able to totally leave things in the hands of fate. I still need to hold on to the reins of my life.

Hiddenson commented that if I can afford my job financially then i should keep it. The problem is, I can't. Not if I want to travel. Whoever says that money's not an issue is lying. It's always an issue. You need it for literally everything. Nothing comes for free anymmore. And if I don't wanna get stuck rummaging through garbage cans in Spain because I spent my last euro on last night's dinner, I'm gonna have to give myself options to tackle these monetary issues. Village Boy suggested buying the lottery; Thurpentyne mentioned doing odd jobs to save up, but I guess he's speaking from the point of a university student. Physically, I wouldn't be able to cope with a full-time job and a part-time one on weekends. So my solution... get my TESOL and teach English while I travel. Not that bad an idea I think, if I ignore the fact that there are probably thousands of like minded people out there doing the same thing. It's worth a shot though. I'll be $4000 short but a step closer to getting out. I'm scheduled to start in July. Part-time, twice a week, 3 hours a day in the evenings.

I'm very glad for my parents' support. They were very accepting of my career of choice, even if they were a little disappointed I didn't continue in the field I studied. But I know that they're happy knowing that I'm happy. I still want to get my degree in Education sometime in the next year or so, and am hoping to do it in Germany. That in itself poses another challenge. I'd have to speak a pretty decent German if I wanna survive university there. One option would be to attend German classes here, the other, and I must say, more appealing one for a number of reasons, would be to live a year in Germany, just studying the language, and then enrolling in a state university. My mum's very excited. So am I :)

Friday, March 18, 2005

Can't wait till June...

I have another 2 full days before work gets back into full swing, till then I'll keep posting. This is surprisingly very therapeutic. I am currently planning my next trip to Germany to see my sweetheart. The last time I was there it was winter and my first time experiencing snow. It was a magical 3 weeks and I wished I didn't have to come back. But now I'm looking forward to seeing Germany in the summer! In exactly 11 weeks and 3 days, I will be on board the plane headed for Deutschland. I'm limited to only 2 weeks this time so I'm gonna spend that time solely in Baden-Wurttemburg, in the south-west of Germany. And since I'll have the luxury of the sun, we're planning to see the sights by bike, and do a spot of camping. Nothing as adventurous as camping in the forests or anything, apparently you're not allowed to... So I've managed to find this little family run camping and caravan park in Black Forest where we could do some 'civilised' camping. We're aiming to check out Freiburg, Baden-Baden, Freudenstadt where we can go hiking and if time permits, Heidelberg. From there we'll travel South to Lake Constance, on the border of Germany, Austria and Switzerland, where the towns Meersburg and Uberlingen, are said to be simply breath taking. So yeah, I'm terribly excited and just can't wait!

Will post pictures when I get back :)

11 weeks 3 days and counting down...

Get serious!

For those of you who don't already know, I am a preschool teacher. I love children, I love being around them and hence, I love my job. Unfortunately, there are many out there, especially here on our little island paradise, who don't see the importance and respectability of being a teacher. For most, it's a back-up for when they can't land a job in the field they graduated in or if they just can't land a job.

I am a Science graduate with a major in Biology, but for the longest time I all i wanted to do was work with children. So immediately after graduating, I skipped past all the laboratory openings and zoned in on teaching positions. By sheer luck I came across an ad stating the need for:

'a young, vibrant, energetic individual, who is comfortable around young children. Creative and musically inclined. Ability to play the keyboard or the guitar an advantage.'

The words just lept out at me. And I thought. That's it! That's me! I called the school that same day, got myself an interview, and a week later, i had a job! Of course with no qualifications in Education I had to start from the bottom, assisting teachers, doing the donkey work and learning the ropes. I then went for night classes, three times a week to get qualified.

This is where I expect to be asked, incredulously i might add, 'A qualification??'
Yes! A qualification! You need to have some knowledge of what you're doing! Preschool is the most important time in a child's life. Screw it up and they're f***ed for good. What irks me the most is the mentality people have about the profession. They think they can wake up one day and decide, 'I don't want to be an architect anymore. I need a career change. What should I do? I know! I'll be a teacher!' and hey presto! They have their own class of 4 year-olds. Easy-peasy lemon-squeezy. How hard can it be? Sing some songs, tell a few stories, let them play a little then when the bell goes, send them home! Well sorry to break it to you, but that's not how it is...

A very real example: A friend sends me an IM asking me if I know of any schools that were hiring.

"Why, what's up?"

"Well i was thinking of teaching part-time, since I don't have anything to do in the day."(She's involved with the European market, some stock market thing I think, so she works nights.)

"Oh, what qualification do you have?"

"Errr... none. Do I need one?"

I lost interest in the conversation after that.

Being a preschool teacher is actually pretty tiring, it's stretching it a little to say you'll teach in the day and then toddle of later at night, fresh as a daisy to do your 'real' job. Plus there's quite a bit of prep work involved. Given the age group of 2 to 6, with 12 in a class, you not only have to be lively and animated and have a whole lot of tricks up your sleeve to hold their attention, but you also have to be creative and spontaneous to pique their interest. Well lively and animated for the 2-3 year olds at least. You have to understand their development, decide on what you want the children to acheive, and from there plan lessons appropriate to their level. In the classroom, you're the leader, the commander, the best friend, the mummy, the daddy, the big sister, the big brother... you clean them when they puke, you clean them when they poop... so if you're willing to be and do all that, you have my blessings...

Despite how biased this whole thing sounds, I am not saying that I have a horribly difficult job and that the lives of young children are in my hands. Far from it. All I'm saying is that a teacher's work is challenging and demanding in it's own way. Don't underestimate it. Respect it.

So if you're teaching, or thinking about teaching just to ride out a streak of rotten luck or waiting for the economy to pick up... DON'T! Go find something else to do.

Children are like a huge white pristine piece of paper waiting to be touched by the colour of love, knowledge and life. And as a teacher, you have a huge influence on what colours find their way onto that piece of paper. Because if the wrong ones go on, no amount of erasing is gonna get it all out. There'll always be a stain.

Wanderlust 2

Going back to my cousin's comment of keeping one's head screwed on a little tighter and saving up for the future, I know of one success story, where a 19-year-old packed up, moved to UK, set up her own pub with her boyfriend, had a falling out, sold the pub, moved to Holland where she rolled joints at night to make ends meet, got bored, went to South America for what was supposed to be a 9 month travel-adventure, met a hot Latino hunk instead and ended up staying for 2 years, broke up, moved to Japan where she ran a landscaping firm, sold that, and did a 180 degree switch to teaching preschoolers for several years, and somehow or other, managed to garner 2 degrees. And now that she's almost 30, I would say she's pretty satisfied with all that she's seen and experienced and has absolutely no regrets. She has no savings but it doesn't bother her. (well I did fail to mention that she wound up marrying the VP of some department of some bank, so i guess that doesn't quite count now does it...) But still, it's the risk you gotta take. Who knows, if I did what she did I'd either be happy with no money or happy and married to a rich banker. Either way, I'd be happy...

Sweet Sweet... Decadence?

It's 1311hrs on a Friday and I'd just stepped into the office... I scoot past the front desk, dodge the bosses office, scurry into my torture tower... and I was greeted with.... silence... no raised eyebrows, no 'Do-you-know-what-time-it-is?' flung across the room, in fact there was no one! Yes, ladies and gentlemen, we are all on a week's break! And while everyone is probably either at home vegeing out devouring DVD after DVD or away on some mini-holiday, I... just stepped into the office. Not that I'm complaining... Much to the bemusement of my fellow colleagues, i'm here whether I'm expected to be or not. There really isn't much to do when you're on a break and everyone else is chained to their cubicles... so I come back to work and give myself something to do. (I bet there are lots of people out there dying to hire me right now).

Don't get me wrong.. it's not like I don't have a life or anything, in fact, i think used up a month's worth of entertainment in the last 5 days. It's just that in some twisted, masochistic sort of way, i actually LOVE what i'm doing. And what makes it even more enjoyable, is the fact that my work is done by 1430hrs. After that I can do whatever I choose to do. Take a 3 hour lunch break if I want to, go for a swim at the gym, do some window shopping, catch a movie... and NO ONE will get on my case for it. HAH!! Therefore, due to these 'benefits' I voluntarily pay my 'torture tower' a visit on my off-days. Does this make any sense whatsoever? I'm still trying to figure myself out...

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

The Eleven Satanic Rules of the Earth

by Anton Szandor Lavey © 1967

  1. Do not give opinions or advice unless you are asked.
  2. Do not tell your troubles to others unless you are sure they want to hear them.
  3. When in another’s lair, show him respect or else do not go there.
  4. If a guest in your lair annoys you, treat him cruelly and without mercy.
  5. Do not make sexual advances unless you are given the mating signal.
  6. Do not take that which does not belong to you unless sit is a burden to the other person and he cries out to be relieved.
  7. Acknowledge the power of magic if you have employed it successfully to obtain your desires. If you deny the power of magic after having called upon it with success, you will lose all you have obtained.
  8. Do not complain about anything to which you need not subject yourself.
  9. Do not harm little children.
  10. Do not kill non-human animals unless you are attacked or for your food.
  11. When walking in open territory, bother no one. If someone bothers you, ask him to stop. If he does not stop, destroy him.

    Courtesy of my supervisor... She's probably just as bored as I am, if not more.


A term I was introduced to by Tasslehoff Burrfoot the Kender, who due to his susceptibility to it, found that he was constantly landing himself into ‘trouble’, as the more ‘serious and responsible’ would say. But I think he would have preferred the terms ‘adventure’ and excitement. Think about it, you lose yourself in a strange land where you know no one and speak not the language. It’s enough to make your palms go sweaty, your heart race and your skin crawl… I mean come on, that’s got to be a good thing! After all, correct me if I’m wrong, but don’t those symptoms remind you of a certain past time we humans love to indulge ourselves in from time to time?

Anyway, I suffer the same torment Mr. Burrfoot did, almost every hour. I knew from a very young age that I was destined for foreign lands… across mountains and valleys, rivers and seas… but when exactly that would be I have yet to find out. I’m still stuck on a smidgen of an island a mile away from my country of birth, and to add insult to injury, the number of foreign lands I’ve had the privilege to frolic in (excluding my current smidgen of an island), are a pathetic 3! Them being the United Kingdom (of which I’ve been to 3 times… why, I don’t know), Germany and Indonesia (or more precisely, Bintan and Batam). I am therefore either much much more resistant to this awful affliction called Wanderlust, or I’m just financially strapped. (Anyone care to make a guess?)

Now, I had a mini discussion with a dear cousin of mine, who at 35, has settled down, is ‘serious and responsible’. Seeing that he was born and bred in Europe, being ‘serious and responsible’ probably wouldn’t come close to what that would mean if applied to Asians. He has an awesome sense of adventure, is willing to take risks, and lives by the moment! And then… deng deng deng… He turned out to be worse than a 70-year-old who had mortgages by the dozen, 10 mouths to feed (still??), and good for nothing children who wouldn’t contribute a cent to pay for his stay at the Peace Lodge Home for the Aged. He basically crushed and ground to a fine powder, my plans to succumb to the call of the wild (i.e country-hop every two years or so in order to experience the rest of good ol’ Mother Earth). His reasons? Sorry REASON?

‘Think about your pension!! You won’t get one if you don’t stay put in one place? You have to think about your future!’

‘But, but, but… I’m young! With years and years ahead of me! If I don’t do it now, I’ll never do it! And I AM thinking about my future, thank you very much!’

I protested. (pouted more like). How dare he? This is my life! I shall do with it as I please!

I didn’t argue my point for long though. I was afraid he might drop some reality check bomb on me and I’ll be transformed into the ‘serious and responsible’. But the damage has been done. The seed of doubt has been planted and it’s growing ever so slowly but surely… sucking dry my ambitions and dreams as the days go by. (Oh I hate you Ian!!) I just know that at this point I’m still trying various brands of herbicides on that damn sprout… the battle has just begun…