Tuesday, 16 January 2018

nightmare

So today was the day the contractors would be fitting all the toilets and sinks ( the one they saved) and the accessories like towel rails, shower and bathroom cabinets (the one they broke).

But, there is always a but, they had not finished tiling my bathroom, it was impossible for the plumber to start.  I also had an issue with the section they blocked off for the shower area, it was too small to stand in and actually have a shower....
retiling today.. 
It was an exhausting day, i was yelling at them, getting riled up about wall plugs and fittings they had broke ( another thing they broke) and didnt tell me.

The best part was the plumbers supervisor telling me that the plumbing company will dock the workers pay for my broken bathroom cabinet.  I was horrified, and that supervisor knew he had a sucker on hand and he milked it.

 I found out later that docking the workers pay was illegal...
the lengths these contractors go to.. I was not amused!
Am i going to get my money for the cabinet... i dont bloody know!

So its been a nightmare day, for me and for the men working in my place today as I am sure I gave as good as I got.

Tomorrow is the final day and the handover... I hope there will be no more surprises...


Wednesday, 10 January 2018

i want to go home

So the Housing Development Board (HDB) in Singapore is  the government body that builds and sells high rise flats for the populace.  They also run and organise the upgrading of the older estates.
Singapore mainly consists of housing that is made up of high rise condos and these HDB housing estates.  These HDB estates are called heartlands where the middle to lower income citizens live.  These government built flats are by no means cheap to purchase but cheaper than private developments in land scarce Singapore.

I bought my flat after my divorce in 1997, and have lived there for the last 20 years.  HDB first did upgrading to our lifts, we didn't have lifts stopping on every floor, but now do.  The most recent upgrading was to our bathrooms.  Those of us that didn't do any earlier renovations to the bathrooms could opt to participate in the upgrading exercise to have both bathrooms in the flat completely gutted, and refitted.

furniture all wrapped and covered ready for contractors
I changed my toilets and sinks a few years back and was pissed with myself and the HDB because I knew that I had to do this upgrade as my tiles were in need of an urgent upgrade and that would mean losing my relatively new toilets and sinks
With alot of begging and cajoling I managed to get them to promise to save my sink when they were going to demolish the bathroom.  I am glad to report that they managed to do that.....but they damaged my bathroom mirror cabinet (some call it a medicine cabinet), I get to go get a new one which they will pay for... and rightly so!
They also broke my bathroom ceiling light...

all covered up...scene from dexter..

The whole upgrading of my flat will take 9 days and as there are no functioning bathrooms in the flat, I moved to stay with Mum for the duration.  I have had to go each morning to my flat to unlock the doors, then to lock up again in the evening which is excellent exercise time for me... however I wonder about the flat being left open all day... i have no faith in my fellow man and I am hoping some delinquent wont go in and damage or steal anything from the place.  I have locked most of my items that can be carried out easily in the spare rooms but one never knows.....
gutted...









I am missing my home.  I am missing my space and its only day 3.  Its not just the space I am missing, I am missing being by myself.  I am also stressed that I have errands to run and things to do, and make sure I go open and lock up each day.  The control freak in me wont allow me to relinquish responsibility to someone to help with the locking up.  I am stressed, out of my comfort zone and I just want to go home....

Monday, 11 December 2017

snow.. no not Jon Snow, just snow

I live in Asia, in sunny Singapore that has a hot tropical climate.  Rain, humidity and hot scorching days are our reality and when any Singaporean gets a chance to see snow, we take that opportunity.

But we dont know what to do when we do eventually see it.... well the snow virgins like me dont..

So on the last day of my holiday, P drove me to Limone Piemonte in Italy as I really wanted o see snow.  Its about a 2 hour drive through mountains and little villages, we drove from Monaco, to France, then into Italy and suddenly we were in France again and finally in Italy.  It was surreal.

P's friend had told him about a little restaurant before Limone, it would be a little uphill trek but manageable with a bit of snow on the ground...
Well it turned out that it had snowed more than P had thought and the little bit of a hard walk up hill in a bit of snow ended up as heavy going in knee deep snow at times.  Not forgetting that thinner air makes me lose my breath faster and asthma complicates it..

roasting chestnuts
We were not properly dressed for that much snow.  In trainers and jeans and coats not weatherproof (and a handbag for good measure, although in my defence it was more to carry my camera and bits rather than anything else) we set off to get to the restaurant.  it was supposed to take 20 mins but after 20 mins and still only half way up I gave up and whined and moaned and said I couldnt go anymore.
christmas market




The trek back down was a bit better, but I still moaned and whined about falling over and getting my camera wet and getting all wet etc.  Gold medal for P for letting me moan and whine and still taking me down to Limone for Lunch.  Gold medal to me for not killing P for not remembering that I was a snow virgin and a whiner.

bagpipers 















We then drove down to Limone for lunch which put me in a better mood and walked the christmas market.  I will include the name of the restaurant in an update later (after I unpack and find the card) as the food was really good.  Simple restaurant with great food.
It was a picture perfect day, a bit out of my depth but then thats life isnt it..

Standing on firmer snow, clutching my handbag on a trek.......
More pictures on flickr - https://www.flickr.com/photos/102809648@N06/albums/72157690793626925

Monday, 27 November 2017

OMG i am in Florence...

David
Its been a dream of mine to visit Florence ever since I did history and learnt all about the Renaissance, which was probably 35 years ago.

I had to pinch myself several times today while walking through streets and museums.
we started of course with David.

It is said that the private bits were scaled down so as not to frighten women... or maybe it was just to make sure women didnt compare their husbands with the actual depictions they saw on statues..

We spent the whole day in museums as it was raining today and the best thing to do was head into the museums... first to see the David then onto the Uffizi Gallery.
There was a big sign telling people to be careful of touts etc but there were people selling tours and we got tickets to the gallery with a tour guide.  Laura, an Italian with a masters in Art History, was excellent in telling the stories behind all the art we looked at.
A Michelangelo painting
the town Lucca, we passed through before we got to Florence



more pictures on flickr

https://www.flickr.com/photos/102809648@N06/albums/72157663031715618


Wednesday, 22 November 2017

day 20 of no facebook.. or having a peaceful holiday


So its day 20 of no facebook and I feel fine
No withdrawal symptoms, no need to find out whos posting what even though facebook is being a dick and still sending me notifications that so and so posted a new picture.. its like its goading me.
Dont you want to see what picture they posted, what comment they  blasted out to the universe..
No Facebook I don't.  I am happy in my own little holiday world.

I was supposed to go out today to see the royal palace and cathedral in Monaco, but somehow as the day progressed I just got lazy.  so I cleaned P's apartment (he's at work being a productive member of society) and had a lovely hot shower and sat down again..

view of France from the apartment
the peace, the quiet, the relaxation is just what the doctor ordered.  I haven't burst into tears since I got here.. oh no shit I did,  but that's not because of me being depressed or suicidal or both which I have been for the last 6 months. The story about the tears will have to wait though..

Anyway

As I sit in the apartment, looking out at the hills which is France, I am quite at peace with no interruption from real life....

More pics on my flickr account
 Eze - https://www.flickr.com/photos/102809648@N06/albums/72157689833785295

Monaco - its so compact
https://www.flickr.com/photos/102809648@N06/albums/72157662864757748

and Fort Revere - where P made me walk up hill but did reward me with a picnic..

https://www.flickr.com/photos/102809648@N06/albums/72157689833845865


Sunday, 19 November 2017

holiday time

I am finally on holiday

in Monaco.
well its the start of a 3 week holiday in Europe with P.
As he stays in Monaco, that is my base and location to relax, go out and take pictures and just enjoy being able to do things for just me.

I landed in Nice and P picked me up from the airport, and let me tell you its really good to have someone  greet you at the airport with open arms and a big hug.
I have had too many airport arrivals and departures on my own that its a welcome change to see a familiar, smiling face at arrivals.

anyway

Monaco is this compact little high rise state that looms over the harbour.  Its like a miniature Singapore with hills.  and of course people speak french... the food labels are in french, the instructions are in french.... it will be a crash course in french, thankfully P speaks some extremely limited French which should help..

Pictures will follow but for today I am just going to sit here in the apartment and do nothing.  absolutely nothing, which is something I have not done in a very long time.


Thursday, 2 November 2017

social experiment

I wonder if we can disconnect from our mobile phones

Well maybe not totally disconnect but perhaps stop whatsApping and texting and  actually pick up the phone and speak to someone instead of messaging.

what people do..
I am thinking of telling all my friends that I will only respond to phone calls and not texts.... will it work I wonder.  Will my friends all suddenly stop texting me and tell me to go get a hobby and not start stupid experiments?

texting is like multitasking, you can have a text conversation with someone and still carry on doing what ever it is you are supposed to do, I guess thats why people like texting.
But I find that when I text I either piss someone off or I dont understand what they are trying to say.  I also feel very pressured to reply, even when I dont want to.

Then theres Facebook, which has become a bit of a bore lately.. so I deactivated my account today, I am tired of seeing ads and bullshit and have the added pressure of adding friends.....
At least I will stop reaching for my phone and scrolling through facebook the first thing in the morning and the last thing at night.

Lets see how long I can stay disconnected from facebook and if I can get my friends to call instead of texting..

Sunday, 29 October 2017

i cheated...

I have been faithful to my one and only hairdresser.

Until yesterday

I feel like I have betrayed someones trust, cheated on my one love...

It was a long time coming.  My old hairdresser was just convenient, first the shop was in my old neighbourhood, it was familiar, safe, then she moved to  the same building where I lived and it became even more convenient.

I hated going to the hairdressers, maybe because she never listened, never gave me a good haircut, but because Mum still went to her and I couldn't be arsed finding another hairdresser who I was comfortable or knew, I just stayed with her.

Before I left for the sons wedding last year I got one of the worst haircuts from my hairdresser and still I didn't stray, then she just kept giving me that bad, mullet gone wrong haircut.

So I had to do it, i cheated on my hairdresser and found a new one, and I am loving this new haircut.
oh how we fall and cheat just to feel good...

Now all I can do is pray she doesn't see me in the lift as she works and lives 5 floors below me...






Saturday, 28 October 2017

pick myself off the damn floor

So I read all my posts for 2017 and what a miserable read it was.

I seem to be wallowing in self pity with a woe is me attitude.
That is not me, that is someone I dont want to become.

Its been a difficult year but I need to shake myself up and get rid of this doom and gloom feeling.
Yes I am unemployed and will be till I start looking for a job next year.
But I am now working part time just to tide me over till the middle of November, when I leave for my holiday.
That has been my light at the end of the tunnel.  I go to Monaco to visit P and we are driving to Italy ( well P is driving me) to spend about 10 days visiting Florence, Sienna, Venice, Verona and any other little Tuscan town we can.  Tickets have been bought, hotels booked and I cant wait..
I need this holiday, I need to get away and relax and be free.

Then once I am back in Singapore after my Italian escape I have to deal with bathroom renos and then off to Canada in late January for Son no 1's operation.

My life is what I want it to be, so the possibilities are endless, I just need to take the bull by the horns and do it.. and kick myself for letting the bad year bring me down so much.




Sunday, 15 October 2017

Walk with me



always alone
Its taken me a long time to wake up and realise A will not be who I want him to be, a partner in my life.  Someone who will walk with me in my journey.

Between the times I told A to fuck off and leave me alone, I tried to date other men, One of them was P.
When I started going out with P I did see what relationships were supposed to be like, and it did scare me.  P scared me with his intensity and I retreated,  and when he found someone else, I thought I had lost him totally.  But we did meet up again as friends and his friendship has been invaluable.
I believe I carried on with A  because I thought both men were giving me a little of what I wanted.  It doesnt work that way does it. When one half is taken away you realise that the other half is woefully inadequate.

Sex once a month or less, hardly any contact, hardly any conversations, hardly anything.  When son no 2 went into hospital, I really needed someone to be there for me, and A didnt want to be that person,  why should he, he wasnt a boyfriend or partner, all we had was an arrangement,  nothing else.

Well I dont want an arrangement, I want to grow old with someone, I want a companion and partner for my remaining days on this earth.  Someone who makes me a priority, someone who isnt afraid to walk with me.


Sunday, 17 September 2017

healing the broken

There has to be something fundamentally wrong with someone who keeps fucking up their own life.

I took on a new job at the end of 2015, I went back to a company I worked for from 2001 till 2010.  They approached me and asked me to go back and I did, with a pay cut and to work a 4 day week.

The saying that one can never go back is true, I had changed but the company hadn't, and I found that people I trusted didn’t have my back.  The 4 day week wasn’t working and the numerous whats app groups and messages on Sundays were not something I wanted.  It was stressing me out. So I quit.

Yes, I do things on impulse without thinking of another means of employment, because I reach a point of no return, and just do.  Not an ideal situation but I just can't help myself.

I was reaching the stage where I seriously thought that I was going to have a nervous breakdown.  Being told repeatedly that I needed to take on more work to prove to ‘people’ that I was actually doing something and that maybe I might be thought of as redundant.  That ‘people’ kept asking what it was that I did in the office. 
Did no one know what I did, and for me it was, how could they not know…

Take on more duties and responsibilities….
I wasn’t paid to do that, nor was I offered more money or an alternative position.  I already was working on Fridays and coming back to the office when they needed me,  I was made to feel like I contributed nothing to the team, and all this came from a good friend and colleague who thought she was doing me a favour and being honest with me. How could she not speak up for me, or even think that I could be redundant?

I felt betrayed by a trusted colleague and friend. 

So I am without a job at 55 and close to a nervous breakdown.  Not an ideal situation but I am resilient and know that I will be ok, I just need time to heal the broken me.



Sunday, 30 July 2017

Refitting the kitchen.. finally

I have hated my kitchen ever since I moved into my flat.
20 years ago I didnt have the money to refit or redo anything.

20 years of working hard to save money, 20 years of scrubbing the wooden laminate counter tops, 20 years of watching the water leak under the sink, watching the cupboards split and finally this year I thought thats it, bite the bloody bullet and get it done.

goodbye old kitchen
so on Friday the 21st,  2 men came in and pulled my old cabinets apart. 
After they were done, I washed the tiles, washed the floor, waiting for Tuesday when they would be in with the new cabinets and new granite countertop.
half way through demo
tiled till the ceiling, 30 years of grime......
I worked from home all day Tuesday and Wednesday morning, while they fitted the new cupboards. A few days later, the granite countertop came in, and the sink and cooker were fitted. They also had to fit in a couple more doors, as they screwed up on the cupboard above the sink. There are a few bits I am not happy about, bad finishes that the main contractor will sort out with the cabinet makers. Then the gas man came to fit the new cooker.
almost done. I had to wait at least 24 hours before I used the kitchen but have started reorganising the place.  there are a few bits left to touch up but its all starting to come together.  I even cooked my easy grilled chicken legs for Sunday dinner..

granite going in

Doing this kitchen was, as expected, stressful but I also realised that when men see a woman alone, they will try to brush things off and kind of dominate the conversation and intimidate you into seeing it their way.  I am of course made of sterner stuff.  Stand your ground.

There were many moments that resembled a farce or worse still something out of a bad comedy.
From the contractors arguing about the wiring of the oven to them putting the cupboards wrong to telling me that if the pipe leaks it's not their problem....
Thankfully the main contractor was a very sweet man that never made me feel that way, he seemed to be the only one that had my interest at heart.  there were several heated messages from me to him complaining about what the plumber or cabinet maker said, and his messages always ..."cool down".
All Done! a little similar to the old ones 


My asthma had a field day with all the dust and mayhem and I hated sharing my bathroom with son no 2 (his bathroom was past the kitchen and blocked off most of the days) as he doesn't put the lid down when he flushes. The disruption to daily routine, things we take for granted like washing dishes in a proper sink and not in the bathroom sink or even just having things like spoons and dishes in their place.  I do not intend to live in the home when doing any other renovation...
the bathrooms will be re done soon though by the Housing development Board, probably next year and if the kitchen threw up that amount of dust I can only imagine what the dust will be like when they hack away at tiles in the bathroom.... I will move out for sure..

Anyway, I love my new kitchen, absolutely adore it..

view from the other side.


Friday, 7 July 2017

asshole magnet

So I had to take my mums old housekeeper to the airport today.  She lives in the Philippines but comes back for medical checkups as she had a mastectomy a few years ago and Mum pays for her to come back every six months for her medical checks.
There was no one to take her to the airport today and she does need someone to help her get to places as her sense of direction is bad and she is so innocent and anyone could fool her and she will have no idea...so anyway.
I  checked her in, sent her off and made sure she passed the immigration lines then took the bus from the airport to work, needed to go to work to do some stuff.

there was this man sitting and waiting for the bus, my senses did go on alert mode with this man but I was more concerned with which bus stop to change busses to get to work. The bus was empty when we boarded, and he choose to sit right behind me, senses got more alert.
 I  felt him pull a bit at my hair, thought maybe my hair was over the back of the seat and pulled it over and made sure nothing over the chair, felt it again.  pulled my hair forward again.
Inside our busses, there is enough space for someone to slip their hand on the side 
Then the dick slips his hand along the side ( i was sitting by the window) and as I had my hand away from my body, he could almost touch my breasts from the back... I felt his hand, looked down to my left and turned around and yelled at him to stop touching me.
he just shook his head and moved away to another seat.
I was not going to let him off that easy.  I went to the driver and told the driver that a man just touched me,
well driver said :   what u want me to do?
I think that shocked me more than what the man did.
Me    -   call the police
Driver - then have to stop and wait for the police

obviously I was going to inconvenience everyone

me - what are u supposed to do
Driver  stares at me blankly

By this time I was fed up, and the man was up in my face telling the bus driver that I leaned into him... really!!!!

Me to bus driver - Stop the bus and get him off
Driver stares at me blankly
Me - stop the damn bus and throw him off the bus!!!

The incident really upset me.  All I got from the other passengers was blank stares, and when the driver had told the man to get off, the other passengers started talking loudly, about me.
How lovely was that.  No one came to help me.  not even when the man was shouting at me and making threatening advances.  Not one bloody person came to help.
No wonder women dont want to report molest.  the people around us dont want to know, dont want to get involved, dont want to offer help or support.  its always the woman at fault.  That man kept saying It was me that was leaning into him and his had was just there... yeah right!

Oh and one of my friends said i should be flattered that I was still attractive to get attention... no this isnt attention.. its just wrong.  Thats not what good men do

I am still upset, I am still wondering why do I always get the assholes after me. Do I have a sign on my forehead that says " bait"
i must just be an asshole magnet







Sunday, 2 July 2017

the Pink debate

While Singapore is still a very conservative Asian society, the powers that be have allowed us mere mortals to celebrate the equality to love.  It's still a very sensitive and highly debated subject but....

the friends and me, notice the barricades..
This weekend we gathered at Hong Lim Park ( which is where we have our speakers corner but then we need a permit to go speak there…) for the annual Pink Dot Rally, a day where the LGBT community and those who support them, gather to celebrate the equality to love.

Our powers that be had to show that while they allowed ‘these people’ to gather and celebrate they had to also show that they did not encourage such behaviour.  As its usually held at Hong Lim Park, the Powers that be decreed that only Singapore Citizens and permanent residents were allowed to attend the Rally as any rally held at Hong Lim was for Citizens and permanent residents only.  They also decreed that only local sponsors could sponser this event.
The powers that be probably thought this event will die a natural death as no local company would openly show support.  They were wrong. 120 local companies and 20,000 Singaporeans showed up yesterday.  Even with barricades and security to check our Identity cards, Singaporeans turned up to show their support.

the Pink  dot on the office building
LGBT rights will divide people,  one colleague in the office was appalled that our boss was supporting the cause by having the Pink Dot logos on our building.  She even went on to say that if we ever were to pitch for an LGBT event or LGBT related event, she would refuse to do it.
Another colleague who has gay friends, says while she likes her friends she won't be able to attend their wedding as she believes it's wrong for people of the same sex to wed as her beliefs say marriage is between a man and a woman.  She also went on to tell me what her pastor said about accepting everyone's right to love…. The Pastor said “Isn't it the same as a couple who are father and child but who have sex, shouldn’t people accept that too, and people who wanted to have sex with animals,  shouldn’t people accept their right to ‘love’ too”

Listening to her, I was quite flabbergasted that the pastor used those examples to argue on the right to love..  So I tried to counter the point especially about the incest and what constitutes consent as well.  2 adults consenting is different from a father and child or an animal. 

It's something that one can argue about all day, what constitutes the right to love, who's right and   who's wrong, everyone has an opinion on this and everyone has the right to believe what they want, as long as they don’t force an opinion down someone's throat, I don’t really care what they think.  I for one am wholly supportive of same sex marriage, same sex relationships and if you wanted to have sex with a goat or camel well I doubt I would approve but...
20,000 Singaporeans showed up


LGBT, Inter racial relationships, discrimination based on skin colour, gender and yes even agesim... Its time to look at the world differently, it's time to push prejudices and discrimination aside allow people to choose who they want to love.
While I identify with discrimination I cannot think how people must feel hiding who they really are just because someone once said love and marriage must be between a man and a woman, we all deserve to be happy in our own skins.


Friday, 30 June 2017

and pigs have flown


I have always let people walk all over me.
From my family, where my siblings ‘bully’ me into submission,  but it's really just that I can't be bothered to argue, so I let them have their victories on small issues but I do dig my heels in on causes I strongly believe in.

My son – who thinks I am giving him a hard time when I expect him to man up and pick up after himself and contribute to the household expenses.

A,  who I hope will want a relationship but meekly agree to just do it his way.

I allow them to lead me up the garden path and pull me by my nose ring like the cows,  (I do have a nose ring actually) in any direction they choose.  I let it slide as I don’t like the drama that comes with confrontation, but then after a few months of running around like a headless chicken for everyone, I tend to blow up.  Like the proverbial volcano.
 I have tried to talk to people to tell them to stop, that it's not working for me,  but the words seem to get stuck in my throat.  I don’t want them to get angry with me so I swallow it all up until the volcano blows.
 Its two extremes.  I am either passive or so aggressive, that I put Jeckyll and Hyde to shame.
I am trying to change that, I am trying to confront issues but it's not working…I sweep it under the carpet and hope the pile doesn't get too big, but it does, hence Vesuvius blows.


I need to stay calm and sit the son  down and be up front about his behaviour and up front with A and tell him what I want and see where the chips fall, and tell my family to back off a bit… yeah and pigs will fly...
Hmm is that a flying pig I see..