In Singapore…

We were in Singapore for our annual visit for about 4 weeks plus, during the summer holidays; it’s the longest we have been there at a stretch since Tobias was a newborn.

It was hot and humid, as always. But it was absolutely fab to see family and friends and, of course, to eat all the yummy foods we missed.

We went a little earlier this year; a dear friend was getting married. So happy for her! It was a lovely wedding ceremony and dinner, with cute, heartwarming little touches throughout. Well done, you two!! The attention to detail was impressive! Because this friend also knew my family, she invited them too and that gave us a rare opportunity to take a very nice family portrait.

singapore20180824aThen we settled into the routine of rushing with the crowds of people on public transport on our way to meet various family and friends for laughter and food. We also got in our exercise in the forms of leisure swimming and some squash games.

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singapore20180824ci am so proud that my brother did Hair for Hope, to raise funds for Children’s Cancer Foundation. He shaved his head, together with members of the 501st Legion (made up of people who enjoy dressing up as Star Wars characters and doing volunteer/charity events).

There was a sad side to our visit this year. Just before we arrived, we heard that a friend had passed away from a second stroke. Our thoughts are with his dear wife and children and family. We also visited another friend in the hospital, whom we had lost contact with for a long time; she was in the final stages of cancer. We were able to say our goodbyes before she passed away, a few days before we flew out of Singapore. Rest In Peace.

singapore20180824dLast but not least, my boy talked his grandparents into keeping hamsters for him again. This time we got 2… Meet Finn and Poe! Can you guess who they are named after?

Oh, my boy also bought his very own gaming laptop, which he saved for 2 years for! He was a very happy boy that day we bought it.

It was a slightly tiring but good trip.

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Goodbye, Claudia…

Last Friday, 15th June 2018, we had to say goodbye to our little Claudia, our little grey one, one of our pet gerbils. It is very sad but it had to be done.

She had some sort of growth or tumor in her belly and was not getting better after a week of meds from the vet. She was simply sleeping all day, waking only to eat a little and drink a little. Even though her belly was big, you could feel her bones through her fur, and she laid absolutely still when you held her, which is most unusual for rodents. Given that she was a good 2 years and 10 months old, the vet suggested it was time to let her go and we agreed. (Gerbils have a lifespan of 3 to 4 years only.)

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Left: Claudia, having fun in a tissue box, with her sister, Belle, behind her, October 2015. Top Right: All three of them, Claudia, Jules and Belle, June 2016. Bottom Right: Claudia sharing dried bread with Jules,  May 2018.

Goodbye, Claudia. Hope you are having fun in gerbil heaven.

Your sister, Jules, the only one left of the original three, is still going strong and we hope she will be with us for a bit longer.

Click here to see all three of them when we first got them.

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Rest In Peace…

Things have happened over the past few weeks, the biggest of which is the passing of my mother-in-law.

She passed away early on Good Friday, 30th March 2018, in Singapore. It was in a way expected, as in she had been in and out of hospital several times in the past year and had various complex health issues.

But it did happen quickly. i got the call saying she was being taken to the hospital and then an hour later, another call to say she had passed.

It was harder for my poor husband who had to hear about it the moment he got off a 10-hour flight.

We quickly got organised. i am very grateful that T’s teacher was hard working enough to be checking his emails on a holiday weekend and we got leave from his school to go to the funeral. We flew out the next day. Thank God we got seats on a very full flight.

The funeral went well, as far as one can say that of a funeral. It was a sad time, yet at the same time, there was a sense of relief because she is in a better place and would not have to be taking all those numerous meds and going to various doctors’ appointments and be going in and out of hospital.

My relationship with my mother-in-law did not start out in the best way. In the beginning, she did not think i was good enough for her son and to be part of her family. But over the years, she had come to accept me. She mellowed out and we found a way to get along.

So while we have had our difficulties, as i have found out more about her and got to know her more, i have come to respect her as a woman who had to make good of some bad situations and she handled them as best as she could, at that time. i had also come to realise that these bad experiences in her life made her a very defensive person and she also held onto some of these hurts for a long time.

Even though she had done and said things i don’t agree with, i do believe she had done her very best as a wife, a mother, a mother-in-law and a grandmother. And unusually for a woman of her generation, she was very verbally expressive of her love to family, especially to her grandsons.

So for all that, i thank her. LaiLai, rest in peace.

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