[Thursday, 22 June, 2006]
The two major parades had finally come to an end. The Monday’s one was quite alright for I needed not stay inside the MPH (Multipurpose hall) for long even though I was the one who set the system up together with a few guys. I still went down to the parade square to help out sometimes. In the end, the MPH was not used since it did not rain, but I had to play a stupid Auld Lang Syne song and witness some guys in army uniform doing cheerleading like monkeys or clowns down the road.
For today’s parade, we switched roles with my sister’s team and were to assist them. I was stationed in MPH again, though quite simple but I rather stayed with my sister to chat and learn some stuffs from her.
Christ was in charge of MPH and I was quite surprised that his unit did not allocate any manpower to him. He was of a certain rank and still had to do everything there if I was not around. Since he was a nice guy but was more blur than me, I did not mind helping him, even out of my boundary of work, which Shep had repeatedly cautioned me not to. I even went to carry the rostrum from the fourth storey of the medical block all the way to MPH in my injuries, which I did not want to mention to him; I would never want to give anyone the impression that I was trying to escape work and I did not want to leave him alone.
Anyway, I was quite touched by Shep’s intention of saving us from workload. She clearly understood how assholes from other departments and units had tried to abuse their rank on us, and she would by all means defend us as her henchmen. However, she did not realise how often we would sacrifice ourselves to prevent conflicts; at least I had been doing it.
Since Yuqing was on MC for two days and Gilbert was busy enough with his lab when nobody else was willing to help him out, I was alone doing all the work with Christ in the MPH for the past two days. Though work was not tough, sometimes it could be troublesome especially when the people kept on tripping the cable which we had taped properly on the floor. Even though the masking tape was most probably cheapskate one and the ground was too dusty, it was all the dragging of the boots that had removed the tapes.
It was not so relax at first when all the big shots did not realise my unit was not in charge of the event. Even ISM was expecting Ben to be there. Then, Christ’s superior must have mistaken that I was from his side from the way he spoke to me.
The most tedious job was to stay there all the while to look after the equipments. Those people involved in marching were also assigned there during breaks and lay down like corpses whenever they were resting. Basically there was nothing to do except to write my diary which was too boring sometimes especially when I was lack of sleep. Although Christ had asked me to go off to take some breaks but I chose to stay there all the time because the crowds could be back anytime for rehearsals and that I felt it was not nice to leave him all alone there because I had already experienced it numerous times. He left the place a few times to settle things.
I made the first cock up yesterday when another CD was given and that I had to play two different tracks for two saluting of the different big shots. Since Christ was not in charge of the PA system in his unit, I took over the sound system totally. They did the first salute and then after that, I played the second track upon hearing another salute command but to realise that they were repeating the first one. Kenny raised his voice at me, telling me that I should have listened properly to the cue and that was hurting from his mouth because we were quite good friends. I really wished I could take a look at the cue papers and that everyone should know that I was not there during the previous rehearsals for the Monday’s parade and that I was totally sucked at memorising the Malay commands.
The second “cock up” was when they were unwrapping the flag before the start of the parade. They did not give us any advance notice and that I was stunned when I heard the salute command. Christ and I stared in blank and we did not know if we were supposed to play the music like. Cold sweat dripped and the worst thing was that they saluted for so long and they could be waiting for our music. In the end, nothing happened and so we assumed we needed not do play the music.
I realised the weather forecast totally sucked. It was giving me the wrong information since noon due late afternoon. They did not use the MPH and my days of efforts were placed in drains again; I was quite happy over it anyway for the responsibility being lifted off. Siu Hang, Yuqing, Kwang Han and Rehan who was just dropping by, helped out with the keeping of equipments. After which, we went back to the parade square to help out on my sister’s side.
I could not understand why just a few persons would cause the suffering of hundreds of people for days. The expense and manpower could be spent on more useful things like charity work.