[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.