Sunday, May 4, 2008

Ideas of Reference

Yesterday's ride was slow and arduous and painful. Especially so when the sun decided to fry anything and everything in its line of sight.


I feel bad because I got my mom hooked on Google Earth. Incredibly nifty tool, especially for all armchair travellers and people who have the embarrassing pastime of spending hours poring over the Singapore Street Directory in the vain fantasy of exploring lesser-known parts of the island, but never getting to do it because - ultimately - inertia rules and this chair I'm sitting on right now is infinitely more comfortable.

Install Google Earth, enter the destination you're travelling to for your next holiday, use the search function to locate the attractions you wish to go to and the hotels and shopping centres you'd encounter. Then save these places onto your map and you have a rough idea of how to get around the area. Google Earth is cool, and by cool, I mean totally sweet.


Sometimes I fear for the future of Singapore. Everyone's all too eager to find their lucky break to move overseas and start their real lives elsewhere. Why? The transport system has crumbled catastrophically in the past few years. The police let the top terrorist over here flee our detention centre. The ministerial cabinet never takes responsibility for their actions - but take their million-dollar wages, they do. Education is a mess, with educational boards being unable to decide once and for all how we are going to teach out nation's children.


It's past midnight and when the day breaks, I'm off to another 4 weeks of elective attachments. Somewhere in the eastern side of this island. With all the recent complains about the crumbling train system, I shudder to think of how much more painful this commute would be as compared to a year ago.


I crave a chance to open up to any close friend. Unfortunately, geography stretches friendships apart, no matter how we want to believe otherwise. It's quite difficult to comprehend how I can feel so alone and isolated, in the country I was born in. In a country that manages to squeeze 4 million people in just a patch 700 square kilometres big. I can't simply open up to anyone you see?

I try to reach out to be reached out to. But everyone's just so culturally different from me.

Different world-views. There are those who are so religious, they find my brand of logic repulsive.

Different vocabularies. I find myself having to explain the English words I use, and them, they gotta explain those Chinese idioms to me.

Different music. They can't appreciate The Kooks; I can't appreciate Jay Chou.

Different everything.

Maybe I'm a victim the Internet and globalisation, because I won't be what I am and I won't do what I do if not for the strong influences from all the (usually Western) cultures out there. I'm a bastard child of traditionalistic Asian Singapore and the hyper-tolerant, vibrant global Internet movement.

I'm a freak.

Less Than Jake - The Science Of Selling Yourself Short


Anonymous said...

no lah.. don't say that.. you are unique seriously it will be cool to find somebody who has the same interest (it's like striking lottery)sometimes i think that way too.. but not much cos most of the people i hang around with got same taste as me.. i guess you gotta get out and miggle y'know how nerdy medicine school people are.. lol i probably get lynched or treated badly on my next doctor appointment :P and i really think you will make a really cool doctor

Lim Leng Hiong said...

"It's quite difficult to comprehend how I can feel so alone and isolated, in the country I was born in."

You may be surprised to know how many people feel that way in Singapore.

It's not your fault; something is wrong with the big social engineering experiment that we're part of.