Sick of Being Sick

I had suffered a long and serious illness for the past month. It did not come as a surprise for I had been warned three months before that. During that period, I had sore throat before I slept but I always woke up feeling normal. It happened for quite a number of time and I guessed that I was saved by taking a tiny bit of manuka honey every night. However, there was also an obvious symptom – my scalp was growing acne and it was irritating.

My body had been “heaty” since young and thus I would fall sick often. I was no fan of food but I most preferred western food, fast food and just any fried food. I had been resisting them throughout my life because they made me fall sick very easily.

However, for this year, I was rather rebellious and did not practise self control. Other than taking fast food numerous times, there was a couple of times I took fried food like char kuey teow as my main course meal. My mum had also bought packet roti prata from the NTUC Fairprice for supper, which tasted quite good after frying them and she replenished it quite a few times. My mum’s porridge for lunch was rather healthy but not her dinner, which usually came with food like nuggets. I was very amazed with myself throughout the months before my body failed me.

As usual, it always started with sore throat, followed by cough and flu. I did not take my temperature but I knew I was having fever occasionally. Phlegm, blocked nose and ears were gifts from them and the worst thing was to bring down my energy. I was pretty slow in my work then.

The terrors did not leave me soon. They stayed faithfully with me for over a month. Doctor told me it was not that my body was weak, but I did not have enough rest. I had to agree.

I was badly disturbed almost every morning by my neighbour’s puppy who barked loudly for a few minutes. It was obvious that I did not sleep early and thus being woke up in the morning was a torture.

Resting during the afternoon was almost impossible with my sticky dog around. I had only two bedrooms and my mum barred Luckie from entering one and my sister-in-law did not like anyone to enter the other bedroom when she and my elder brother were not around. I could not leave Luckie alone in the living room because he would end up crying and barking so loudly that I would end up not able to sleep.

Since I was sharing bedroom with my mum and younger brother and both of them would “die” without switching the air-con on even when the weather was not very bad, I had to bear with it despite I was afraid of the low temperature. Flu was never tolerating.

While I was sick, I still had to continue with my daily administration work. It was not difficult at all but to do the same old time-consuming stuffs for the past few years was really sickening. Those boring work would not make me grow.

One of the most stressful things was to arrange for photoshoot. Things would be better if the parties I had to alias with did not give problems, and eventually, I had actually wasted my time and effort. I was all along very easygoing but some people might be fussier than me. Not everyone was very committed.

I had one of the most challenging tasks on hand, which was to update the website for my “xiao mei”. She had changed her webhost a year ago but did not migrate her files over. Somehow, she was lucky that her old files were still inside the old server and the host did not remove the files. I had to try log into both her new and old webhosts, and of course the latter did not work. In the end, I had to rip the source codes and other files from her own webhost and it included a flash file, which was calling other files. I spent a few days to fix everything for her. It was mind-blowing. In fact, she was not in a rush but I was just too determined and eager to solve her problems.

That week, I had promised to do an interior shoot for my cousin-in-law. During the first day, a Tuesday, he was astonished to see me turn up at the bar. I was wrecked by the full-equipment bags that I had carried all the way to the place when my body was so weak. He checked his phone and realised it was the correct date and time. The problem was that there were many staffs working there to setup the place as they were still in preparation for the opening the week after. Even one of the string of LED light was loosen and hanging around. We agreed to shoot during the next morning but he texted me a couple of hours before the shoot that the bar’s staffs would be there to work and thus we postponed to Friday. I had forced myself to wake up early over nothing. On Friday, I was smart enough to not bring my laptop along, in fact, there was no need to even bring my lighting along to the cramp place. The person holding to the key was not around and I had to wait outside the bar for around half an hour. Then, contractors continued to go in to fix things while the lady staff was cleaning things up. Many items such as fruits were laying around the bar counter and tables. The tables were not even in order. To conclude, it was a disaster for a photographer. I had to move things around by myself and even wiping the surfaces of the tables and it was impossible to even capture the widest shoot using my 24-70mm lens. I had to also wait for the staffs and contractors to move away before I could set the long exposure for my camera. It was one of the most horrible photoshoot I had ever done in my illness and I was not even satisfied with the angles and lighting.

The thing that had worsen my illness was the NUS TevaSUN beach volleyball competition on that Saturday. Each team consisted of five players, including one substitute. Tony, Gin, Bernard and his girlfriend signed up for it but Bernard had confinement at Palau Tekong and thus I was roped in. As the substitute who had to cover for Bernard, I had to be present so that our team would not be disqualified. I finished my TCM medicine (that was prescribed to me right before my illness turned for the worst) and I did not have time to get new medicine due to my interior shoot. Eventually, I took panadol and flu tablets to fight the virus. On the actual day of the competition, I was still very sick. Every time I tried to use my strength, I coughed badly. My head was heavy and I could not concentrate. I disgraced myself in front of all the girls. Right after showering, as I tried to blow to clear my nose, the mucus came out with blood. I knew it was not due to bruises inside my nose because I did not blow my nose hard. The situation was so bad that after I got home and tried to clear my nose again, the mucus dripped continuously for more than five seconds and it was bloody on my basin. I went to see the TCM doctor again and was lectured by her for not resting. For a week, the blood was a loyal companion. My illness took even longer to go away.

I was naive at times but at least I kept my words to everyone. I did my best but my best was far from even the level that I could accept for myself.

Staff Bonding – Food Rally

Friday was quite a special day. After some hesitation, I finally decided to go into the office in shorts. When I saw Alvin wearing more causal than me, I knew I was safe. Afni made some cupcakes for everyone. Most people were in high spirit.

I went to Pui Kuan straight away for the amendment of the poster once again and around an hour later, just before everyone was moving off, she told me there was another amendment.

Things almost turned sour when Weitat dragged the time. He was helping Madam Seet with her work and at the point of time when we were moving out, he was not down at the car park yet. Jingkun was frustrated for the sudden delay because it was already planned since so early. I felt it was ridiculous as well but I remained silent since it was pointless to say anything or to change his decision like always. We decided to go ahead with the game without him but he turned up to ease our disappointments.

Joy sped off in her Suzuki, sending the four “hunks” she claimed to Hort Park. We were quite lost at first but we eventually got ourselves registered at the car park and took a picture to start off. Our initial plan was to stroll off fast but the teams in front were running and thus, we followed.

Jingkun was deadbeat somehow at the start at Forest Walk unexpectedly. My right knee started to ache soon as well. Weitat and I tried to take the gradual slope up to realise taking the stairs could be much faster. We reached the Hilltop and finally climbed up to the usual Henderson Waves.

Next, we tried to fool the rest of the teams into wrong direction but it somehow did not work. The journey towards the Cable Car station marked my greatest mistake as I led the team to take the stairs up. It was the normal route for trekking but the other teams took the road instead and made a faster and less effort trip.

The finish dash down the stairs towards the Harbourfront MRT station allowed me to lead all the way, except that we were all lost at the entrance since it was the last station and yet nobody was around to receive us. Jonathan and Joy were doing their shopping and had to rush over.

I was told of reporting near the food centre and quickly rushed over to get the puzzle from Sharon. It was a magic cubic and Jonathan quickly torn it apart to cheat. The next puzzle was a list of location for us to decode and we simply continued solving them by the crowded covered path besides the food centre. Some people were doing surveys near us and we borrowed a pen from a sweet girl but she was gone when we were about to take off. The pen was from City Harvest.

We went to Yuan Ching, Bukit Timah, Adam Road and finally Clementi to take pictures with the stalls. Our greatest defeat was at the traffic jams and we did make some minor mistakes in turning, but overall, Joy was reckless enough to help us speed up a lot. The final mistake was that we should have asked Joy to wait for us near the main road instead of the car park because it took us quite long to get out afterwards.

It was a very enjoyable day even though we could only emerge as the fifth team out of twelve of them. We had nasi lemak from Adam Road for our lunch at the school canteen. Later on, it was announced at the prize presentation that they had extended it to five teams instead of three, and we were glad to receive the twenty bucks NTUC voucher.

I took a lift from Bernard and then Weiming accompanied me until Commonwealth MRT station.

My elder brother and I were engrossed in the 倚天屠龙记 on channel 8 every weekday at eleven PM and thus, we watched it online after midnight and dozed off together.

Too Many Lousy Volleyball Referees in Singapore

I dropped by CCAB (Co-curricular Activities Branch) a visit on Monday with my gang. It had been nearly a year since I last watched a volleyball tournament match.

The CTSS boys fought bravely against their opponents even though their setter was hospitalized and they were playing with an untrained setter. Victory was pretty near in the last set until the referees cracked it up.

Even if the entire net and the two poles were pulled down, the first referee would not have noticed it at all.

The opponent’s spiker pulled the net so hard while spiking right in front of the first referee whose sight was perpendicular to the top of the net and the old man did not spot anything. It was around three metres away and short-sightedness was never an excuse.

Apart from this, he was a great dice player that he would only catch “double” fault when the offender made loud contact sound while setting. His eyes were probably staring at girls.

This issue of having lousy referees for the sport is a great issue. Blowing of whistle wrongly would definitely turn the game over by dampening the morale of the winning team if the standard of both teams are of slight margin.

If I were to become a referee, I would not have done a good job as well since I’m lacking of concentration. However, since I know I do not have the ability yet to do it, I would not even try it even if I were offered a huge sum of salary.

Given a job and you know you do not have the capability, it is better that you do nothing than you blast it badly, even though you suck for accepting it in the first place.

If you do not have a big head, why do you want to wear such a big helmet?

Having many lousy referees in Singapore has killed enthusiasts.

Don’t Affect My Personal Life

I always hate it when work or studies affect my personal life.

It’s ridiculous to send me over to the client’s office to do editing of website. I find it a disgrace especially when the clients try to make it sound like it’s our fault.

What’s Web Support? It’s supporting clients through means of the World Wide Web and not door-to-door visit. Some people think they have some filthy money and can abuse the staffs; but they are too stingy to even offer some incentives.

You all caused the back injury of mine to worsen and thus did not perform as good as expected during the match. You all suck.

Lost the First Match

We lost the game on Monday.

I couldn’t get back to the level like in the past.

The greatest problem was that Hougang Sports Hall was very stuffy and it was not long before I started to feel dehydrated. The feverish brain was too strong for my perseverance and I had to rest for long before the actual match started with my legs wobbling. I felt weak but I wasn’t tired.

At least I did better than forecasted.

The mild headache accompanied till for more than a day and I regretted not drinking enough water before the match.

nEbO Beach Volleyball Fiesta 2007

[Sunday, 24 June, 2007]

I could not get to sleep for the work load but finally gave up after 3am. After waking up at 6.30am, I resumed my work when Ying Ying messaged me that she was sick, which got me quite panic since it was impossible to find a replacement at such hour.

I took train to Harbourfront and that was a wrong choice for I had to walk longer distance and it simply took me more time. I was late and Tze Khit was already waiting there. Mingfa, Weitat and Wilson had arrived at Seah Lm food centre and I was right that Wilson was late and therefore he changed his mind and drove his car down.

I had my breakfast there, taking a plate of wantan noodle. Adrian and his girlfriend joined us, followed by Ying Ying. Since Wilson was in my team, Mingfa told us to move off first while he, Weitat, Adrian and girlfriend would go in by bus. We reached there soon and got registered, and then found ourselves a pavilion. Mingfa and his gang joined us soon.

The briefing for the game was conducted by a coach cum referee from VAS by the surname of Lim. I was very stunned by the way he spoke like as if everyone owed him money. I recapped how Amen talked to me over the phone, telling me he hoped everything would go smoothly and yet the organisation allowed such rude person to oversee the entire event.

Anyway, one of the rules was that no one was supposed to take off his or her clothes during game play, which was totally ridiculous and insane since it was at a beach. It could be possible that someone had big tummy and did not want others to outshine him too much that he rather made everyone suffer from having ugly tan lines. The reason was that the referees had to differentiate each of us by our shirts, which was a laughing stock for the referees and scorers were sounded like idiots; perhaps, the person who set the rules, most probably Lim, had colour-blind with ultra short-sightedness that he thought every contestant was wearing exactly the same short.

It was one of the few beach volleyball competitions which we did not receive any shirt; some people could have purposely not bring extra clothes for they thought they would be given the singlet. Since they did not want to give away any shirt, they should not demand everyone to wear shirt at beach. Since that someone was already so insane, his condition might be worsened and the next year’s tournament might require every contestant to wear long sleeve shirts.

We lost the first game to a usual beach bum. He was friendly and had very good skill, but there were times when he dropped balls and the newbie non-certified referee did not penalise him. Eventually we lost the first game to his team.

There were numerous Q&A sessions. A group of Malays camped near there to snatch opportunities for free sandals and holidays resorts. We had our second game, which was a walkover. After that, Wilson, Mingfa, Weitat, Adrian and his girlfriend went to 7-11 store at the Beach Car Park with me to get some drinks. Each team could actually receive four cans of drinks from the organisers but when I went over, the auntie sounded so rude like as if I had gone there to collect from her before. It was the organisation’s fault for not giving off any coupon for the collection.

There was one hot girl with great figure sharing the same pavilion with us. I did not know that Jenrine’s friends knew her and I started joking about her loudly when she was playing her game. I was so embarrassed and hoped her friends would not know that I was talking about her.

We won the third game eventually and started waiting for news. I was dehydrated but did not dare to go to the 7-11 store for it was quite far away and the next game might start anytime. There was no announcement from the organisation and I was so not impressed by their attitude. The score board was not updated and when Mingfa talked to Lim about it, he did not show any shame and barked back instead.

“You still have to wait anyway.”

This irresponsible excuse from a high paid organiser employed by the NTUC took me aback. It was his duty to make sure his subordinate or colleagues to update the score board and not allowing some score sheets to be hidden for more than hour without transferring the results to the board, which he failed badly. Since it was his fault, he could have just apologised or at least, put in some words which any low educated parents would have taught their children. Even if I were given the chance to take his place, I might not do a better job, but at least I would be brave and honest enough to admit my mistake. He was simply a disgrace to his company and the organisation.

The thirst set me to a slower pace. Everyone was exhausted and we did very badly. The opponents showed their hypocrisy at the start of the game, which quite disgusted me in the end.

Ying Ying left immediately after the game and I walked her to the toilet near Beach Car Park. After which, I went to the 7-11 store in the hope to drench my thirst but all the drinks were not cold and I decided I would throw $1.50 worth of coins into the vending machine than to get more expensive and yet not cold drinks there.

When I got back to the pavilion, everyone was not around and a Malay guy came over to borrow ball from me. I was reluctant to lend him for various reasons and that I decided to stay around there in case he might try his luck on all of our unattended belongings.

Mingfa lost his fourth game to the same group of people who had beaten us. I got furious when I heard that the immature referee had announced their winning but changed her mind when the opponents, who were actually her friends, protested. This group of opponents were labelled as those cunning players since long ago but they were at hi-bye terms and everyone was very disturbed by their lack of sportsmanship.

This event was better than the previous Rip Curl’s disgraceful failure, but the person overseeing everything had spoilt everyone’s day. I had only seen an experienced referee, Brian, whereas the rest of the seemed very young and inexperienced, who had caused angers to many participants. Strong teams lost the games partially or fully due to the referees.

Weitat left on his own right after bathing. Adrian and his girlfriend seemed to have other plans as well. The remaining four of us took Wilson’s car to Vivo City and had our dinner at Food Republic. I took fish and chips at $5.80, which was not very worthwhile, but still better than the western food stall at Holland Village. After that, we went to the basement’s Kopitiam to have dessert. We did not have problems with the weird cleaners this time but the stall auntie tried to short-change Mingfa and faked innocence.

Since Tze Khit’s presence was rare, I accompanied him by taking train instead of bus. We had great chat during my short journey and he examined my injuries.

After reaching home, I realised I had missed the beginning part of the “Initial D” movie. While watching the show at channel U, I was distracted by my work. Right after the show, I dozed off on my brother’s room.

Ripcurl Beach Volleyball Championship 2007 – The Greatest Mockery

[Saturday, 12 May, 2007]

I hurried with my work to cover up for the previous days’ lack of update. Yuqing approached me to do a survey for him. Finally I went off at 3am.

I set my alarm at 6.15am but as usual, I lazed around and only until Mingfa called me, I came to conscious. My mum was lazy to make the half boiled eggs for me and she chose to do the milo with biscuit, which caused me to empty my stomach inside the toilet like usual.

I managed to catch the bus as I dashed across the road and Junrong was inside. We met up with Jinyang soon and Kachua joined us. Mingen called me to order food even though he was driving and I had to take the bus in. while I was waiting for the carrot cake, I got to chat with Kunhan. I was surprised when Ying Ying came over to join us and I was very touched for it took a lot of courage to join me and a group of people whom she had not met before when she could actually go in with Jenrine.

We took the bus to the Beach Car Park and went down to meet up with Mingfa and Wilson. As we strolled towards Siloso beach, Jinyang went to the toilet. We got to the exact location for the competition soon and started registering.

The sleepy Wilson who simply ignored the prank on him

Babe

Kok Chiang who slept throughout the day in his “cool” position

Jevin Ou

Meh Meh sheep

It was a very sunny day and my stomach had done bad service to me by giving me a mild gastric problem while waiting very long for the first game. The court we were called for was different from the scheduled one, which showed how unorganised they were. At the beginning of the game, I blocked off an opponent’s spike and they started spiking from away the net. Soon, we were losing them many points. There was once when one of them spiked and hit Ying Ying on her face, we were furious but could not do anything. We picked up point bit by bit but they reached twenty-one earlier than us.

A sudden depression filled my mind. It could be due to the fact that we should actually win the game or because of the injury on my star player or perhaps, more than these. I was nowhere near to prove myself. The sand kept me accompanied as I sat alone at a corner.

I finally got to feel a greater pain as the gastric problem smiled at me. Instead of the food, which had not arrived, Junrong and Kachua exchanged the coupons for ice-cream, which eventually worsened my pain.

Mingfa eventually won his first game; it was a good decision to put the better players inside his team. We played the second match against Albert’s team and everyone played badly, which gave us no chance of winning. My gastric pain was at its worst and turned pale.

After the game which had confirmed our withdrawal of the tournament, I went straight to toilet. Soon, I got better but it was too late for there was no more game anymore, which was stupid that we had to pay $70 for just simply two instead of the usual three games.

Lunch was fried mee hoon with an egg and chicken wing. Nothing free was good. Under the hot sun, it was stupid to have an egg cooked with chilli; whereas the mee hoon was not fantastic and the chicken wing looked old.

Sweet Jessie and I

Jessie and Kok Chiang

Charlene and Tiffany with Tiffany’s stupid dog

Xiao Yuan and Kok Chiang

Again with a better position for better lighting

Their stupid dogs refused to take proper photo

I got to play with Shunliang until Mingfa’s second match started, I went over to witness how they won the opponents. After waiting for very long, we started finding empty courts to play among ourselves, but we got chased off soon and finally gave up. It took hours for their next match and I joined in a boring game at one of the free courts with Mingen, Andy, Justine and others. I got to sabotage Guoxiong in front of Yali, which was obvious that I was joking.

Darkness arrived and suddenly, I was told that Mingfa had ended his fourth match, defeated by the police. It was in fact meaningless to play for it was dark and there was only a spotlight. Many teams had complained about it. I laughed at the organisation for they announced earlier on that it was the first time ever in Singapore that so many teams had participle in a beach volleyball tournament; it was a disaster. They should have sought advice from me beforehand and I would advise them, “If you don’t have a big head, don’t wear a big helmet.” They had so many available courts but so many of them were empty which caused the delay that every team had to wait hours for each game. It was a failure and a laughing stock of the year and history of Singapore’s beach volleyball competition. I should not mention about the cock eyes and unprofessional referees.

After having my bath, I sat under one of the big sheltered area with Junrong and started dozing off. By the time Mingfa waked us up, we realised Wilson had already driven Yingyi, Anqi and Fiona out and these three ladies were not going to dine with us. In the end, Mingfa, Junrong and I had to take bus out of Sentosa.

We were deciding to go to Harbourfront Centre’s foodcourt but eventually changed the location to Vivocity where Wilson met up with us for dinner. I took fish and chips as usual. We were at the foodcourt at the basement and beside Banquet. Soon I realised the cleaners there were similar to Banquet’s. Shunliang was dining there with Justine and he came over to chat with us.

I took bus 80 home and started working. I was just in time to catch “The Eyes 2”, which was a good movie.

Submitted Registration for Rip Curl Beach Volleyball Championship

[Tuesday, 24 April, 2007]

I slept at 5am this day and waked up at 10.30am. Unfortunately, soon after going back to sleep, I was waked up by Kaven. My brain cells were on strike at the moment and when he was asking for his new house’s address, I did not know where to find it. It was after we put down the long distance call (he was at either Thailand or Korea), I found the address in my phone’s inbox and forwarded to him.

At 3pm, I finally waked up again. I was bended on settling the Rip Curl competition stuff by this day. In my mind, I was quite worried that I could not make it on the day of competition myself due to my work as property agent.

Since the date and time for Block 219 Ang Mo Kio was not confirmed, I tried to call Penis Seah to confirm it. This time, he finally picked up the phone but started to accuse me that I should know the date. He was an experienced agent and should know that JTC’s resale flats were different from the usual open market’s resale flat; it was such a shame of him to deny everything and refuse to simply state the date and time. He had cheated half of my commission and yet he did not have a little guilt. This type of crooks was still in the market, which made me very disappointed in this line.

I made a call to Ying Ying before leaving the house as to confirm her name and shirt size. Since she was working in Singtel, I started crapping with her about signing up a new at first and she got so confused. After putting down the phone, Jenrine called me and only then I realised Ying Ying did not know that was from me.

I went to Vivocity once again. I went directly to the Rip Curl shop and the staff thought I was going to submit the registration form immediately but I told her to get me another three of them. I started filling up for the two teams. The cute girl was around but I realised her makeup was thick. As I was rushing to settle everything, Weitat called me to inform me that he was taking the train and could not wait for me. Therefore, I dropped the idea of following him to Jurong West to watch his inter constituency match.

Before leaving the shop, the cute girl was back to the counter and we exchanged smiles. I went to the Sky Garden to take a little walk by myself. The shops were all up and what impressed most was the “Planet Fitness” fitness centre, which was facing the sea.

I did not stay for very long for I knew I had many tasks to accomplish. I took a long rest at home but the backache refused to go away; it appeared out of nowhere since weeks ago.

Jianhao did many checking on me to call up the potential tenant for the Redhill rental but I could not locate the owners. Later on was all my usual updating of websites.