Monday, October 11, 2010

A Minute for Goodwill

While on my way home from work this afternoon, I decided to pass by the ATM counters inside the Eunos MRT station to get me some money. There were two long lines of people trying to do the same, and being it the rush hour we were all naturally just dead tired from work and agitating to go home and hit the bed. But an Indian guy was noticeably more agitated than everyone else, sweating profusely when in fact the airconditioning inside the counters was on full blast.

The man was standing in line right beside me, queueing nervously along the crowded counter next to mine. When it was his turn at the counter, he turned to me and said, "brother, could you kindly help me get some money, I do not know how to do it."

It dawned on me that the guy doesn't know how to read. He knows how to push his digits against the keys but he knows nothing about what's written flashing towards him on the screen. He said he only needed $20. I thought, well, what robber would get only 20 from a stolen ATM, when the least amount on the option says $50. He can very well just push that if he was only trying his luck! So I helped him through it, but let him key in his PIN, which I guess he just memorized by repeatedly doing (as opposed to actually reading and getting familiar with the figures themselves). The poor guy's PIN was 123456.

He turned around and said thank you after getting his cash, finally relieved of his ordeal.

I ended my long day tired but smiling, knowing there is some stranger out there thankful for a gesture that took me less than a minute to do.

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Saturday, October 9, 2010

Eating Well

Food here is nothing less than excellent. That, together with total lack of any regular  exercise, is exactly the reason why I gained a few inches on my waist. I better start running again, coz I know I wouldn't be able to run away from these!

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Three and a Half Weeks

It's been almost a month since I hopped on a plane from Manila to work here in Singapore. It was on my yearly wish list, but I never really thought I'll actually get a job here, much more to settle down and live here, but here I am now trying to adjust to a life in a mega-city known for efficiency and plenty.Of course there are moments when I miss home, the chaos of Manila,chicharon and adobo and Lucky Me Instant Pancit Canton, and my previous life of not constantly bothering to check if I have clean clothes to wear, or remember if I have ironed out dress shirts to make myself look at least decent amongst a designer wearing crowd each morning. Right here I must do everything on my own, all the way down from buying my own food to doing my laundry weekly. But it's a small price to pay for all the amazing things I've seen thus far, the warm and friendly people I've been meeting, and the confidence that only working in a global environment can provide. I've wanted this moment to happen to me, and now I am actually living it. I know that no matter what happens, this was one plane ride I'm glad I took and didn't miss.

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