Tuesday, May 10, 2011

3 weeks flew by~

Amazingly my last post was about my app on the AppStore (Which is not making much money). Since then I have had a crazy 3 weeks which involved a week taking a bowling coaching course, having friends from HK visiting and the SG elections.

The coaching course was great~! Met some nice people, fantastic instructors and really motivated me to take up level 2 so that I may be able to take up school teams as head coach some day. The course consisted of 2.5 days of theory and 1.5 days of on-lane session. The theory sessions were fun. Never had I felt so happy in a lecture room. I guess the vibe of fellow bowling enthusiasts really came through during the 4-day coaching course and I made a few good friends as well. The course conductor, former national player Mervyn, also created a good atmosphere for the course.

The on-lane session was a bit more taxing for us. I swore i threw the ball down the lane more than 200 times over the 1.5 days. Having 15-20 games over 2 days doesn't kill but when you are conducting lessons or a trainee the amount of time spent standing, squatting, sliding with a bowling ball is significantly increased. After the course I had only a day to recover before ex-colleagues from HK came for a visit.

The M couple is back for a second visit, this time bent on spending a night at the MBS and taking a dip on the skypool. Another is K,a long-time colleague of mine, with her friend. For K its her first visit to Singapore. One reason why it took so long for K to visit Singapore is because of all the negative things she's heard from her friends and relatives all these years.

I'm happy to say that she finally admitted that it is really not enough to explore the entire island in just 4D3N. And not to mention we played drove them around, saving them quite a bit of traveling time. She only managed to visit Universal Studios and not the rest of Sentosa. The Night Safari and not the Day Zoo. No time to bring her around Arab Street. Not sure if she managed to visit Little India. Only half the number of dishes I've wanted her to try. But then again maybe its a good reason for her to come again. Palm Beach Restaurant at One Fullerton, East Coast Lagoon Food Centre, Durians from Geylang, Katong Laksa and the SkyPark at MBS. I think we played our part as host. But they've taken good care of us throughout our tenure in HK and this was the least we could do.

Then came the election. I don't know... I felt that the whole nation has taken a knock. Progress? I don't think so. People blaming each other for voting for the other party. Where's the maturity? There are things the government can do, ought to do better and should have done better. I appreciate the people who make intelligent comments targeted at those deficiencies. But then there are so many who complain for the sake of complaining.

I think several issues are up there on people's minds. Rising property prices, rising commodity prices and the massive influx of foreign workers. No magic bullet to all 3 issues but my fellow citizens seem to have solutions. They have solutions based on hindsight. It's always easy to pass judgement but it is not so easy to pass policies which can withstand all types of problems. So far Singapore has emerged from financial crisis and other problems faster than most countries. To that I say they must be given credit.

When the property market crashes people will come back and complain how the government manage to let the market collapse. Rising food prices is actually a global phenomenon which I don't think Singapore can affect. The foreign worker issue is one which I think the government can resolve. But it requires businesses to employ local workers, incurring higher costs but maybe better quality. Its not an easy option and a real Pandora's box much like HK's stance with the minimum wage.

I have many friends who are not married not have gotten their 1st flat. Its a massive undertaking to get a flat these days with waiting time of 3-5 years for 1st timers while a resale flat will cost upwards of S$400k. The stress of losing one's job coupled with a market slump weighs heavily on everybody's mind. Even those who already have gotten a flat feels for those who have not. With 30,000 properties coming into the market next year I think that problem will be slightly alleviated. On the contrary I fear that a property market collapse will be onto us when funds start to pull out.

Funnily enough people write about how well HK is doing and there are no poor people in HK. To that I must say we have alot of ignorant fellow Singaporeans who really need to go out and see the world. Young Hong Kong couples are having as much difficulty getting a place of their own. Minimum wage is not without its sacrificial lambs. Debate is often very superficial when people talk about HK and then they realize that you've stayed there while they have not. Ever so often we hear about a place and maybe we've visited that place. But we stay only in the hotel and hardly stay in the place long enough to make a good judgement. Ask me what I think of HK after my first 20 months in HK and I will tell you it was terrific~ 60 months later? Not so great...

Oh well... its all over until the next elections (although there are still people trying to make their point all over Facebook). For me its another 2 weeks until my level 2 coaching course~

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