It’s been an emotionally draining day in the office and so I thought I would take the time out to write my usual end of the year summary, something which has become a tradition for me ever since I start this blog about a decade ago.
World in events in 2017 have proved to be “interesting,” and the man we have to thank for it is the current resident of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Mr. Donald Trump. From the moment he plonked his behind onto the desk of the Oval Office, the “Donald” has proceeded to run the American Government like his famous reality show- The Apprentice. Donald and the world media have worked together to ensure that “old media” remains more relevant than ever by publicizing the man himself.
For the most part, I’ve found the man vile. Foolish Cowards on their own are usually a pain in the arse but Foolish Cowards in positions of power are worse. What can be worse than having your life crapped on because some fool in power woke up on the wrong side of the bed?
However, as I grow older, I’ve become more accepting that there are certain things in life that I can’t change and that I can only accept things as they are. I’ve also learnt to make peace with certain things in my life. While one might conclude that life is generally sucky, I believe that if you calculate your blessings and look at what you already have, you may find that you’re better off than you think.
I take the fact that my health has remained relatively robust. Although I am not as fit as I once was, I’ve suffered no major health issues (baring three sick days this year) and I am glad to say that I am slowly but surely moving my weight southwards, which should help me have a better quality of life in the years to come.
Then there is the fact that I continue to remain gainfully employed in two jobs when most people worry about staying in one. While I don’t have anything to brag about on the professional front the way I had when I freelanced, I can say that my CPF (Central Provident Fund – Singapore’s National Pension system) has gone the right way and I’ve been able to make a more significant contribution to the family that I chose to bring into my life.
However, I am at the crossroads. I’ve had stability in two industries that were not ones that I looked for. I see myself being stable for a long while if I carry on down the path that I’ve been on but I don’t see myself going beyond where I am. So, the question remains, do I take the chance and what chance do I take.
I’m a believer in doing what works for you. I’ve reached the age where I need to admit to myself that I am not meant to be sitting behind a desk and the thing that works for me, isn’t the thing that necessarily works for everyone else. I’ve proven that I can be in a full time corporate environment but I don’t feel any sense of achievement. So, I need to work on where do I go from here in the next quarter.
As I sit by the crossroads, I must take the time out to mourn the passing of my old friend, Mr. Luke Fogarty, often known as the Old Rogue. Luke was what they call a “larger than life” character, who we all believed would outlives us all until he got struck by cancer this year. When I think of Luke, I think of his ability to have energy at all times and his incredible sense of optimism. I’ll always remember a 16-year old asking him what he wanted to do for retirement and the answer was, “He’s thinking of retirement at his age – I still haven’t figured out what I want to do when I grow up.” (He was in his 80s at the time). Luke was the man who encouraged me when I least expected it and I will always bless his heart for writing the testimonial he wrote for me when I was ready to adopt the character we call Jenny Tang.
Speaking of Jenny Tang, she finally buckled down and did something towards her school work. It was a little late in the day but she did enough to get through the next level at school. Now, the hope is that she really understands that she’s taking a public exam this year and does what she needs to do. As a parent, I need to be able to see her through this year and my biggest challenge is to ensure that she understands that she needs to use her potential this year.
I have hopes for the year to come and I have to thank the fact that I made a new friend in Mr. Greg Page, who is the husband of Lucy, one of my wife’s friends. I met Greg at the start of this year and although we’ve not had the chances to meet often, Greg has been a source of inspiration, who has reminded me of the important things in life – staying true to family and having passion for life. He has helped me by reminding me that you only get successful at something if you have a passion for it. In a way, Greg is the American who lives the reasons why America has been the main power of the world for the last two hundred years – openness to ideas and people, who differ from you (his background is Southern Baptist and tells me I’m one of the few liberals he likes 😉)
Next year could be challenging but like always, there’s always a case for being optimistic about the future. I think 2018 could be a very beautiful year.