Wednesday, June 29, 2005

SG Sitrep 10.

T minus 7.

I leave next week. (Toyed with the idea of leaving on August 9.) At least I will be spared the in-your-face, self-congratulatory, nation-building propaganda this year.

For my recent mood with respect to the upcoming move, the following song is quite close to my sentiments.

Lila McCann's new single album "I Can Do This" written by Rachel Thibodeau.
The next couple of entries are probably along the lines of "today I brush my teeth" as I focus on documenting the practical (logistics) aspects of the move. This entry is not going to be along any particular topic, but more of recent actions taken and interactions that I have had on the upcoming move.

So, know where you're gonna be staying dude?
- from email by a concerned reader of the blog
And expressed in concern by more than a few in real life. For the record, I have no idea. Probably figure something out along the way. Most likely a budget backpacker-type place not unlike where I last put up when I was in Perth, at least until I can get my bearings. I do not suppose they would be overflowing with tourists in the dead of winter.


Instructions provided for termination of mobile phone line. Instructions provided for termination of broadband internet access. Email account paid up till middle of next year. Notified the bondholder whom I have signed as a surety. The surety becomes invalid and has to be substituted in the case where guarantor is non-resident in Singapore for more than 12 months.

Dusting off the luggage bags. Collecting empty packing boxes. Started the process of sorting through what
little remains of my worldly possessions. Shredding old credit card receipts, hotel bills, ticket stubs, road toll receipts for disposal. It was quite an impressive collection of road maps of West Malaysia that I have collected over the years on those many holiday road trips. Rather nostalgic and a bit sad that I had to trash the memory-filled collection of heavily-annotated road maps falling apart at their creases from heavy usage. When I asked D. if she wanted the maps, her reply "not going anywhere on Malaysia roadtrips without you" made me choke back with emotion.

The other difficult thing to do was to give away the last of my books. Some of them I have had for many years. TCP/IP Illustrated from all the way back to university days. The beat up copy of Tom Sawyer I owned from way back. My well-thumbed copy of Security Analysis. And so on and so on. Books are bulky, heavy and can be easily replaced.. but it is still hard to give them up. I take comfort that at least they are now in the hands of somebody who can appreciate them - rather than rotting away unread on the shelves of some secondhand bookstore. Two of the paperbacks - the very first two Enid Blyton paperbacks I have ever owned - are going into The Box with the rest of my momentos.

Picked up a new set of rechargables from Sim Lim as they are ridiculously expensive in Australia. Also picked up an external harddisk case, so I can literally plug in my secondary (data) harddisk into any Win2k or WinXP machine with two USB ports. Not planning to and cannot afford to buy a laptop. Sobering to think that all the personal digital data that I have accumulated in my entire life can be reduced and stored into a sleek silver case that fits easily into the palm of one hand.

Have drawn down the last of all my remaining secured and unsecured credit facilities. I still have to figure out how much to leave in Singapore to meet the month debt repayments to remain solvent for a while. The long period of unemployment and exorbitant cost of the visa applications and the prior consumer debt have put me in a very shaky financial position. As an initial estimate, I reckon I will have only a couple thousand dollars to fund my relocation. If this does not work out, I will be bankrupted in Singapore. Bankruptcy is a very bad idea because it curbs freedom of travel. (Bankrupts have to apply to the Official Assignee for permission to travel out of Singapore.) And choosing to defy the restrictions would mean I can never enter Singapore again, unless I intend to be arrested and imprisoned once a Warrant Of Arrest is issued. In summary, insolvency would suck big time. And this is not even considering the ethical and moral aspects of defaulting on your debt incurred.

"You are packing like you are not coming back."
- D's comment when she heard about my recent actions
There is still a lot to be done. The financial arrangements details still need to be worked out. The computer needs to be reformatted as a ready backup for the family machine or D.'s machine when I am away. Have not started putting into a box for storage (and ready for shipping) the stuff that I do not intend to bring across on the initial trip. Will have to start packing the 20 kilograms that I will be bringing.


See it this way, if you are a democrat voting, socialist lesbian atheist in Utah u dont stick around and rant against the mormon church, u fucking move to San Francisco..
- entry A Cynical point of view, from blog 01S70.
AF called me for supper past midnight yesterday. Sitting there in the middle of some coffee shop in Bukit Timah eating roti prata with AF and AF's significant other at 1.30am while AF ranted about "and exactly when were you planning to tell us (about the departure date)?". And it struck me that it would be a while before I would ever do this again. Eat fresh roti prata at 1.30am, I mean. I should be able to annoy AF enough to get miffed at me anywhere in the world.

Like the other friends who know me well, AF commented that it would have made more sense for me to stick around until D. was ready to leave with me. That previously, D. had been at the core of most of my personal decisions. I suspect that AF disapproves of this move as the odds of success (perceived by AF) would be higher if both D. and I relocated together. I differ in that assessment as I previously blogged in
Approaching Crossroads.

An important corollary to recognizing that decisions are about probabilities is that decisions should not be judged by outcomes but by the quality of the decision-making, though outcomes are certainly one useful input in that evaluation. Any individual decisions can be badly thought through, and yet be successful, or exceedingly well thought through, but be unsuccessful, because the recognized possibility of failure in fact occurs.
- from Robert Rubin,
Commencement Day Address to Harvard University on 7 June 2001


Blogger Elia Diodati said...

It's your life. Live it the way you want it.

June 29, 2005 12:07 PM  
Blogger sngck said...

I am sure you will make your relocation succeed.

I can't remember if you have blogged about it before, but you need to have a 'fixed' address so that you can open a bank and tax account before you start work. I believe you would have known about that from all your readings and preparations...


P.S. If you need a loan or something to stave off bankruptcy on this island, I'll be very willing to help. But something tells me you won't need it anyway. :)

June 29, 2005 12:44 PM  
Anonymous JT said...

It surely will be tough. But things will go smooth sailing once you take that giant step out.
I agree that it's your life - live the way u want it.
Remember, you only live once.
As I said many times already - do it or regret in your sunset years -At Least You Tried!

June 29, 2005 2:59 PM  
Blogger Tym said...

Why do you need to get rid of everything? Can't you just store it temporarily in Singapore till you're ready to move it all over? I've been married and living on my own six years, and I've still got odds and ends at my parents'. ;)

I hope the initial move goes smoothly. You sound appropriately meticulous about your packing...

June 29, 2005 3:12 PM  
Blogger Patricea Chow said...

In the future when I am financially sound to emigrate to anywhere in the world, I will look back on your blog to ease the process. Follow your heart, and things will turn out exactly how you wished them to be. :-)

June 29, 2005 6:10 PM  
Anonymous peiyi said...

Sometimes, we know that we have everything to lose if we don't succeed at our only attempt.

Just try to keep your destination in sight and it will make the ride a lot better.

Good luck!

June 29, 2005 10:22 PM  
Anonymous Martin said...

I have a roomful of books that I've accumulated (including lots and lots of comic books) . In the end, I have to choose only a handful to bring if I need to out. Just like your desert island list. Lucky there's ipod, though!

June 29, 2005 10:28 PM  
Blogger takchek said...

Good luck! Will wait for stories of your new life in Aussieland. :)

June 30, 2005 2:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was going to write an email to you, then realised that it was easier to get an update of your life by reading your blog.

I remember clearly how awful it was when you were without D in made me realise how much she kept you grounded. But you know what, maybe this time is different. You're determined, you have so much at stake, and you're preparing for D to go over. I believe you will succeed.

I'll miss those late-night suppers with one of my oldest friends. I did tell you that. Maybe I'm selfish. Or maybe I'll move too, one day, when B is ready.

But it'd never be the same.


July 09, 2005 1:30 AM  

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