[Thursday, 18 May, 2006]
Finally the end of the week is reaching; I try not to think of the fact that another Monday would soon arrived as well.
Yesterday and today, work in camp reminded me of the past. It seemed that I was the only one doing work like before the newer guys joined us. I was left alone inside the office to settle so many shits and luckily Gilbert was around sometimes. I should not be alone but life was always unfair with people who did not realise they were dumping their shares of work on others.
To begin with yesterday, I woke up at five plus to catch the first train. I reached Choa Chu Kang MRT by 0630h, which was fifteen minutes earlier. I got to meet up with Yuqing and Ben during the half an hour’s wait for Kwang Han. Then Yuqing drove us in.
Setting up the PA system for the parade square was superbly fast. Each of us had so much self initiative and that we trusted everyone was working hard that built up the team spirit. The three of them carried the heaviest equipments and that prevented worsening of my back and knees.
Quek was soon there and he helped us to troubleshoot the problems; the system had failed us so greatly that it was a shame to get everything fixed up fast but unable to neither produce quality sound nor prevent the buzzing noise. We were moving fast but problems were too great for the lousy equipments to handle; even all the new sets of wireless microphone abandoned us. In the end, I managed to borrow the wireless set from the Spectrum, which added the second shame. Quek was stressed when Ben had to memorise the sequence of the parade’s music.
I was surprised when Shep teased me that I was happy as I was going to ORD soon already. She had also told us about her new second appointment, which would involve in flying over to Australia anytime for two weeks. She was being sarcastic about her lack of work and I tried to analyse that she was wrong since someone else sitting near her was a freeloader instead. She could not get the referred person even though I told her he had a personal air-conditioner, and after a while, she finally managed to telepath properly with me… “You ah…” that was so cute and I was enjoying the relationship between us, from one year ago the sour till now, not sweet but at least not bitter.
Our sweat came to an end before noon. The moving of the large speaker told me how weak I was now with the injuries. We kept everything and went back to the office to rest. I was almost paralysed and that my left foot almost cramped a few times though I was just sitting down and resting.
After lunch, the chaotic started as Ben went for physiotherapy while Kwang Han and Yuqing went to the MPH with Chen De. Actually, they waited for quite some time at the Publication store and I was left alone inside the office. Troubles came in like endless river flowing. It was never so hectic for the past few months until this day; I was too lucky.
The contractors came and power inside a room tripped. People came to borrow chairs and also the use of printer and I had to help him. There were running up and down of the stairs to settle countless problems. Behind me sat the outsiders playing games, telling me how lonely and self-help I was.
I was not sure what had become to Chen De. I realised he was not helping out in the MPH actually. He told me before he did not like someone and that was why he stayed away from the office and now everyone was gone except me and when I was so busy, he did not come back. I had never given excuse to stay out of office for months even though I had undergone so much, which colleagues who had been through the olden days had witnessed clearly.
There was this big let-down when Chen De called me to bring him the keys to the control room of the theatrette suddenly when there were queues at the counter. I thought he was so busy but was stabbed when I saw him waiting at the stairs; I did not understand why he did not want to go down to fetch the keys himself when I was the only one suffering inside the office with endless work.
The day ended with nobody informing me that the theatrette could be closed and that when I announced the missing of a key, everyone rushed off instead. I waited to see the shuttle bus left while I tried to contact the culprit. He came back so late to inform me that his instructor had taken it after Quek made some contacts around.
After being made to wait for so long so unnecessary, I set off for home quickly. I returned the keys to the main office and saw Shep inside, who offered me cake to return the favour of me saving her with my bread a few weeks ago.
Vivi kept me accompanied with her messages. Then, I realised I had to settle for my own dinner and could only wish to reach home before collapsing. I was powerless, being drained off my energy, causing weakness in both physical and mental.
I had a bonus suddenly when Vivi told me she was on her way home. We were actually so near each other that we met up at Outram MRT. I picked myself up from the weariness and sent her home. I was really lucky to be able to see her once again instead of having to wait for the weekends. Yesterday night, I further exhausted myself again, plundering my sleep.
A new day began in camp. I was alone in the office for AVA as well. Things were never good and actually being worse than the day before. After persuasion from kind souls, I tried calling Chen De who told me to just tell everyone that AVA was lacking of manpower and not to render any service to others; he just refused to come back to help out. It was impossible except for carrying of equipments.
I was alone to face stupid faces. The admin side had three groups of people coming over; the AO and DY AO, the clerk and the chief clerk. I showed them to the different rooms and then had to prepare the sign board for the next day’s event. It took like hours to be able to get started with all the incoming work; the borrowing and returning of equipments and once again, the contractors. Blackie almost raised my limit of endurance when he came over twice to borrow items, sounding like a General again. Of course, there were borrowing and returning of rooms as well.
I got Ah Teck to the office since he was slacking inside his bunk; however, I could not find the chance to entertain him. People who came into the room would definitely think it was a heaven for the computers connected to play games seemed so rare in an army’s camp; they would never guess that none of the players was an AVA staff. Everyone could see how busy I was and if only that AVA’s most unwelcome person was around to witness everything. (Well, forget it; I rather not see him around)
The stress ended during lunch time. When I passed by the Spectrum, Shep asked me to go to have a word with her. She realised how busy we were with only three men and maybe somehow she knew Chen De was not even there to help Yuqing (inside the theatrette) and I. She was not pleased with Quek giving Ben and Kwang Han Off on the busy day. I rest assured her that even though we were really tight but we were still able to work things out.
I managed to catch Yuqing during lunch and thus I was not so alone again. We got back to our work soon and I was finally able to relax with Vivi’s messages. I was glad she had made improvements and I would not feel guilty for not able to guide her enough through her exams period because of my drifting away from studies. Then, her call kept me accompanied for the whole afternoon until I realised my phone’s battery was near to flat.
This afternoon, I also got to realise how stress Yuqing could get. The theatrette was hectic with the big group of regulars trying to organise for the SOCC passing out parade; each of them had their own ideas and comments that gave Yuqing all the mess. Captain Phua seemed to have demanded a lot from him as well. I was not really able to help him much except to search f
or the national anthem CD.
This afternoon, the disappointment was still great. I talked to Chen De just before booking out that he should have come back to the office. I told him how difficult it was for us to answer to Shep when she was looking for him and we had no idea where exactly he was. In fact, he was failing me and yet I had to cover up for him, though Shep was really smart enough to guess he was slacking away since he was going to ORD soon (one month before me only) soon.
Others had commented that it was pointless for him to be inside the office as well since he would be sleeping all the way and in the end I had to do all the errands. They were right in some ways.
The day sucked.