Week One, Some Observations

One week in and I’m totally exhausted. I’m physically very tired after a week in the office. It’s been a big adjustment. The work itself is great, it’s as if the role was made for me. The content knowledge and business skills all just came flooding back. It’s a bit like riding a bike. The company is also very impressive (I’m not allowed to mention the company name here as this is a public blog, but you can find out on my LinkedIn page).

I’ve spent most of my time in meetings this week and there are a lot of names to remember. My biggest issue was the temperature change. I’m well acclimatised to the tropical climate and don’t mind the heat but in Singapore it’s freezing everywhere because of the aircon. The office, the MRT, the shops, the restaurants, … everywhere it is so cold. I’ll have to start carrying a cardigan around I think.

It’s a big adjustment for Seathan and the kids too, they’ve mainly focussed on school this week and the change in teacher was a good opportunity to review the schedule and the curriculum and to re-organise classes a bit. They’ve also started visiting the pool and the gym at Raffles on a daily basis and ventured into town to do some grocery shopping.

It’s a very strange feeling to all of a sudden be separated like this, whereas before we spent pretty much 24/7 together. We’re making the most of the weekend together and yesterday we went into town to play tourists. Today we’re just going to chill by the pool, here in the marina.

And then there’s the culture to get used to. Singapore is so different from anywhere else we’ve been. Everything is super organised and super efficient. But you can’t deviate from the rules. People work extremely hard and long hours, the dedication is impressive. Most people won’t leave the office until their boss goes home. There’s a strong work ethic and a culture of respect and inclusiveness.

The language is something to get used to as well. Even though English is the official language, most Singaporeans speak a local version of it. They tend to speak very fast without pronouncing everything properly and ignoring the grammar. It will take some getting used to. We were in a shop yesterday, buying some phone credit, and I had to translate to Seathan what the shopkeeper was saying (Singaporean English to normal English) 😂.

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Scooting around town, Marina Bay Sands in the background

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the rooftop bar at Marina Bay Sands

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admiring the view

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it’s a long way down

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happy tourists for the day

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life is better with a cocktail in hand

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thirsty work being a tourist!

 

 

 

Welcome to Singapore

First of all, I’m very happy to report that Tyrii is recovering really well. He’s managing to eat solid foods again and can almost speak normally again too. The stitches (16 or so!) will take up to 3 months to dissolve. I don’t think he will be doing any front flips for a while and he’ll probably stay away from trampolines all together. It was a big trauma and we’re all very relieved there were no further complications.

So, yes, we have finally landed in Singapore. The sail across the Singapore Strait took an entire day as our destination, Raffles Marina, is on the other side of the island. We received a very warm welcome and we’re happy with our new berth and surroundings. It’s not as exotic and lush as Nongsapoint but there is a great swimming pool featuring water slides and even a jacuzzi, a decent gym, restaurants, a bar, and, it’s peaceful and quiet. It will do just fine.

Best of all, Raffles Marina has an MRT station (aka underground or metro) right outside the entrance to the marina. It takes a good hour to get into the centre of town but the MRT is very comfortable, clean, airconditioned and there is phone signal everywhere.

I’m starting work on Monday but have already been into the office to meet and greet some key people and collect my new phone and laptop. They had also organised a welcome dinner which was a very nice gesture.

So, here we are, Singapore, we are ready for you. It will be a big adjustment but we’re excited for the changes ahead. Wish us luck!

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bye bye Nongsapoint

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Singapore, here we come

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approaching the big smoke

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Singapore skyline

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at the Western Quarantine Clearance, first check is done by the Police

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busy Singapore Strait

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it’s near sunset as we approach Raffles Marina

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Raffles Marina

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entrance to Raffles Marina with the famous Raffles lighthouse

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we have a lovely quiet spot at the end of C dock

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our gorgeous neighbour

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C dock

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there’s even a complimentary newspaper, delivered directly to the boat each morning

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view from the bar

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the swimming pool is approved by the kids!

 

Accidents Happen…

I know it’s part of life and most parents will have to deal with it at some point, but it is soooooo upsetting. At a lovely Sunday BBQ with friends, here in Nongsa, the kids went to jump on the trampoline and an attempted front flip went wrong. Aeneas came running for help: “Come quickly, there is lots of blood, Tyrii has hurt himself.” He was in tears himself. Seathan and two other guys rushed to the scene and it turned out Tyrii had bitten his lip in two. Lots of blood. Lots of pain. Lots of tears. First to the local clinic in the resort and then straight to the hospital in Batam for stitches. I’m so grateful Seathan is good at dealing with these kind of emergency situations. I’m not that great with blood and injuries…

Tyrii was very, very brave when they had to stick a big needle in his tongue for a local anaesthetic. Seathan had to watch and assist the surgeon sewing the tip of Tyrii’s tongue back together. I think the image will haunt him for quite a while. When Tyrii got back to Rehua last night, he managed a little bit of chocolate milkshake and scrambled eggs. Eating is going to be difficult for the next few weeks. He’s also on a course of antibiotics and painkillers. We hope he heals quickly.

 

Other news. We’re still in Nongsapoint marina, but will be moving to Singapore with the boat in  the next couple of weeks. I signed a 12-month contract and we’re just waiting for the Employment Pass (work visa) to come through. It will be a big change, going back to work, but it will be good top up the coffers before we continue across the Indian Ocean. Seathan will be a ‘boat-husband’ and take over the homeschooling until we settle in and then perhaps we can look at schools. We’ll continue to live aboard Rehua of course.

Finally, a few pictures from this morning, when we joined the start of the Neptune Regatta. This annual event is very popular with Singapore sailors and takes everyone to the Equator (near Neptune Island) and back in a week-long regatta.

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waiting for the start sign

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the committee boat

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At the start-line

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Rona is at the party

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Captain David and Lia

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Prime Factor, Seathan used to race against this one in Sydney

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Start for the multihulls

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And they’re off…

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Beautiful classic yacht Rona

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Rehua in Nongsapoint Marina