Thursday, 10 December 2009

Singapore and closure

After years of being away plus a lot of reflection and prayer, I can finally say, with absolute closure that Singapore is no longer a long term option. I love Singapore, I miss my friends there, and it's close to home, but there is something about permanence there that doesn't agree with me or the plans that God has for my life.

For a long time I have flirted with the idea of moving to Singapore to settle there permanently after I marry, since it's an English speaking country and I can practise law in Sg pretty easily (compared to the US). When I go back to visit you amazing people I feel a tinge of covetousness, like oooh I wish I was back here! Little pleasures like sitting in Clarke Quay with friends . And ooh the MALLS and the MRTS that take you virtually everywhere I just love it love it love it love it. I missed Singapore for a long time.

But I want my kids to know what I knew. When I was little, I didn't have PSLE worries or streaming or tuition. In fact, I never had tuition in my life. I did extra curricular activities for fun, not to earn points. I climbed the longan tree in my front yard, collected sea shells by the sea shore in my back yard, leapt over the neighbours fences to escape the resident psycho stray dog. I didn't have an elite upbringing, I didn't wear OshKosh B'gosh and I didn't go for Kumon classes. My only form of education before kindergarten was Big Bird on a fuzzy TV1 (the aerial had to be tweaked), digging up earthworms with my younger brother and helping my mum collect water from the water truck during the drought (somehow that memory sticks like gum to sole of shoe - there was a drought in Melaka, and the truck would come every two days and all the neighbours will walk out with pails. My mum will station me to watch for when the pail is full and I will yell "Mummy man3 le!!"). I don't necessarily want my kids to have the exact same memories but I do want them to know what it's like to not have people piling on expectations on them as to how to act, what to be, what not to be and how to learn. I won't let them get away with everything (my parents were dead strict) but I do want them to love childhood. I turned out fine, so I believe my kids will be fine learning at their own pace too.

I think Singapore produces extremely brilliant and talented people, and kids in Singapore are very blessed. But practically speaking, my dream house is pretty big (it's got a large kitchen!) and it has a back, side and front yard for the kids to play so practically speaking, that's not going to be possible in Singapore without plenty of moolah. So I need to be somewhere where land is more affordable.

I would love to be in Singapore for a season as a tourist, visitor or expat but that's as far as it goes. No offence to you very beloved people in Singapore, like seriously I love you guys and I love the convenience and shopping and LOVE LOVE LOVE Singapore. But God has called me to be elsewhere.

And the good news is wherever that elsewhere is, you guys can come stay in this lawyer's house and we can cook a meal together in my big kitchen :)

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