As I sat in front of a computer monitor in an Internet café in Singapore – I haven’t been that lucky to access the Net in my hotel – I let my mind wander through the days that passed since my arrival in the Garden City. I wasn’t ready to come back because my work wasn’t complete yet – that’s how I felt – but the earthly deity’s word was the law. Also, the thought of bumping into the Moor was off-putting. Could there be anything positive about the whole trip? Even the minute glimmer of sunshine, Universal Studios at Sentosa, wasn’t the harbinger of good news I expected it to be. A friend said that the reviews he heard about the theme park were not encouraging.

Nonetheless, Moor or no Moor, exciting Universal Studios or not, my return to Singapore started off on a good note. The AirAsia flight I took actually took off on time unlike the last trip when I had to sit through a four-hour delay and landed in Changi Airport then a few hours before the breaking of a new day. The auspicious overtone continued when the immigration officer flashed me a smile – aren’t they trained to remain stoic in the face of a sunflower mood and face? And, to cap the orchestra of positivity, my friend came to pick up at the airport way past 10 in the evening.

But the pessimist in me started to overshadow the optimist. My thoughts weren’t morbid or murderous; they just weren’t Walt Disney- happy. Then I remembered my mum and sister’s words of remaining positive amidst adversity, which dovetailed with the experiences I had with working with a Balinese in Bekasi. All women – my mum, sister and the Balinese – are pillars of positive energy. They remain optimistic about the turn of events and life without losing their sense of reality. The belief that “something good will happen” always surrounds their aura, words and demeanor. In their e-mails, my mum and sister navigate the negativity enveloping with tenacity and, through this, I am able to glean nuggets of wisdom in remaining upbeat in a city that blew my heart and soul into smithereens. Meanwhile, it was through the Balinese’s actions that I became a little wiser.  Mired in situations fraught with frustration and dissatisfaction, she always smiled, never lost her temper and praised the universe all the time.

I’m currently suffering from Prince Dastan/Jake Gyllenhaal fever having been completely bowled over by the 29-year-old American actor’s pulchritude so am pardoning his cliché of a line. As he addressed Princess Tamina in the film Prince of Persia, he said, “We make our destiny, Princess.” It has grain of truth despite being hackneyed. We do make our destiny, don’t we? If we don’t make a move to achieve what we want in life or strive to be happy, we’ll certainly get nowhere. Worse, well be trapped without end in the abyss of loneliness and sorrow. We can, to borrow Shakespeare’s words, plague heaven with bootless cries, but that will not achieve anything except further desolation. We can whine all we want, which is our right, but don’t forget that we also have the power to put an end to our misery. It all boils down to will and a great dose of wanting not to indulge in self-pity and wretchedness anymore in the Garden City.

For every memory of that great failed relationship, I turn my focus to the universe and the infinite opportunities to be happy again. My father’s words come into play here: “Don’t consciously search for happiness. It will come to you.”

For every friend lost, I look to the news ones I’ve met and to the ones who have been there for ages.

For every moment of the blues, I munch on a bar of Kit Kat after sashimi.

For every philistine and grouch I see on the street, I recite my sister’s words: “The four of us plus Kayenne are perfect.”

And for every skinny girl that passes me by, I declare, “I’m voluptuous!”


One response to this post.

  1. Munch A Word…

    I found your entry interesting do I’ve added a Trackback to it on my weblog :)…


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