The months have just flown by and we can’t believe it’s April tomorrow (and that means another birthday coming up very soon). I think it’s fair to say we’re still settling in. Raffles marina is great, we definitely made the right choice in terms of Singapore marinas. The pool was the determining factor for the kids, the distance to the MRT station for me. And both have lived up to our expectations. The walk to the MRT station and my daily commute is absolutely fine. It takes me about an hour to get to work but it’s valuable ‘me-time’ that I quite enjoy. And getting home to Raffles marina in the evening is like coming home to a different world. It’s peaceful and quiet with space around us and the contrast with the fast-paced and hectic life in the city centre is wonderful to help one ‘switch off’.
Seathan is cracking on with schoolwork, and on weekdays the membership lounge (which is hardly used) is turned into a class room. There is the bonus of a free coffee machine to keep the teacher going and the kids can be separated by a few metres and each have their own desk which can make a huge improvement to the concentration levels, as you can imagine. There are daily trips to the gym and, of course, to the swimming pool. Add to that the usual chores of grocery shopping, laundry, cooking and cleaning, as well as boat projects and maintenance, and you can imagine that the boys are pretty busy all day. It’s great to see the kids helping out more than they used too, and I have to give Seathan credit for that because he’s much better in delegating than I am. 😀
So what about work? Well, I’m actually really enjoying being back. It’s been remarkably easy to get up to speed and I feel I can really add a lot of value. I couldn’t have wished for a better role, I’m challenged and I have a lot of responsibility but I also have a lot of support and I feel very appreciated. I work with great people and I’m also learning new things. The hours are long but I don’t mind that because the days just fly by so quickly.
Now, would I rather be out there sailing the big blue ocean? Of course I would. I miss it every single day. I miss waking up at sunrise and jumping of the back into the turquoise clear water for a morning swim. I miss going snorkeling together, admiring the colourful fishes and corals. I miss not seeing the boys all day. I miss having an afternoon nap on the trampoline under the sunshade. I miss sailing for days in a row and then arriving somewhere we have never been before. I miss going ashore in the dinghy, in some remote atoll, and meeting the local villagers. I miss being at anchor and feeling the breeze come through the boat. I miss watching the sunset from the cockpit.
But, it is what it is and I think a year will go very quickly. The only thing that has been worrying us a bit is finding friends for the kids. There are not many other liveaboards in Raffles, let alone liveaboards with kids. But, you would think that in a big city like Singapore, that wouldn’t be a problem. Unfortunately it’s not that easy. Most kids go to school and have a series of after school clubs and social commitments we wouldn’t really fit into. We’re also keen to keep homeschooling. International schools are very expensive and local schools hard to get into. And homeschooling works well for us. Luckily, we’re not the only ones in Singapore doing homeschooling. There are quite a few in fact, including a lot of expats. So there we go, this weekend we caught up with two other families, one American and one Australian, who both have kids of similar ages and who also homeschool. The kids all clicked and had a great time, so we’re very hopeful this is a sign of more to come!