Singapore

these days words are meaningless

I am disregarding sensible sleeping hours again, in spite of my need to wake up anytime from 6 to 6.20 am tomorrow morning; I ineffectually console myself that the two-hour catnap I took during dinner is sufficient.

It strikes me that the natural end of my other, private LJ is drawing closer, not least for the lack of updates. To be very frank, too, the need for that particular platform has subsided with its replacement, this wp, and – it seems like every time I leave (or intend to leave) Singapore, I designate it as my final departure, as the last emigration that will mean something – but that LJ was my home away from home, a temporary harbor in foreign tides while I needed it. I have my sea legs now, though, and home is a different metaphor for me, so perhaps it is time for a new chapter. I’m sure I’ll find new ways to leave Singapore again, each time, but for now.

It is a recent conjecture that this sweat of listlessness, a contained, mildewed restlessness, is that wanderlust of mine rearing its ugly, quiet head again. Quite less petulant now than the few weeks immediately following my departure from Pearson, and less forceful, and less hysterical, but always, always present? Even as I would grudgingly admit, upon questioning, to the concession that I have been active enough during this summer, every free moment is still spent trying to figure out what else I can do here, even the hours of fatigue. I haven’t been reading, either, which dismays me, but I bought Pico Iyer’s Essays from Several Directions today from a used book store, and I’m looking forward to it. I’ll let travel writing tide me over the next few rooted weeks.

Speaking of books, I also read the Sec 1 prescribed Lit text, which is The Giver, by Lois Lowry, and quite a fascinating read in spite of its intended audience. More narrative than literary, I think, but the dystopic nature of it had wholly unexpected angles, and while the ending seems like a tad of a cop-out, the writing is clean. The author did a great job of endearing the dystopic society to the reader (i.e me) initially, but failed to really express the repulsive side sufficiently. Still, would be interesting teaching it. I find it impossible to remember my mental state when I was 13, partly because I didn’t like Sec 1 very much, and partly because RGS for me was Sec 4. But snatches of the girls’ conversation today included “it was for a noble cause!” and “that’s a eulogy, right” along with the more prosaic “uh ms karen … nevermind! uhh … nevermind nevermind!!”, so I suppose the jury is out on their eloquence. But they are certainly very, very bright. Thirteen-year-olds. Did I know the word ‘eulogy’ when I was thirteen?

Discovered what must be the best cheesecake I have tasted in my life, which is still too low a praise for the sea salt caramel cheesecake at The Marmalade Factory, Ion. It is the $8 version of heaven. And I am especially partial to the Eton Mess, too, a concoction of fresh, and I mean fresh, cream and summer berries, that I will marry in a heartbeat. I feel reasonably justified in my belief that it would be worth coming to Singapore for this cheesecake.

A surprising number of adults at RGS recognized me, not least the principal and vice-principal, my surname and all. I must admit to being taken aback, especially when teachers remind me of the essays I’ve written. I have such respect for them, though, in a way I’ve never even considered two years ago, and not intentionally, either, as a result of my newfound appreciation of the trials of teaching, but simply through … crossing the boundary into their world.

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