I am forever thankful that you are by my side. Please never leave me.
Entry #056 (Jun 19 2022)
Compared to last week, nothing happened this week at all, besides that I became eligible to claim my MLP participation for the CIL that I was in as some paperwork on UAI‘s side was completed. I mentioned in my claim form to the coordinator that I was hoping to do a study abroad program soon anyway for double points, because participation in the MLP program was supposed to offset the need to do a study abroad program as one of the requirements (local) for the Certificate in International Learning, particularly the one that says “You can satisfy the intercultural experience requirement by going abroad (6+ weeks), working in a cross-cultural environment in Canada (100+ hours) or living in the International House (1+ year).”
But none of those three were happening in the pandemic, so the MLP was created for the students caught in that mess because most students were only students for a limited amount of time and would otherwise fail the CIL requirements through no fault of their own. I took part in it anyway and was very happy that I did, but I technically didn’t really need it since I still planned to try to push for a study abroad post-pandemic like I am now. It was more like a backup plan.
Anyway, the coordinator sent me a nice note back saying that,
Please know you’ve sparked an idea to recognize those CIL students who go above and beyond, i.e. you’ll have exceeded requirements for intercultural experience if you do indeed go abroad, as you have already met this requirement via the pods. Wouldn’t it be cool to get CIL with Distinction?! I will raise this with my supervisor and see where it goes, as this certificate belongs to the Faculty of Arts; the International department administers the program.
So that’s neat, I suppose. I might never go abroad at the rate my luck is going, though. I replied to the coordinator stating that my mindset was that the requirements list was more of a curated list of ideas regarding ways to improve myself culturally, or signposts pointing to interesting routes in life, rather than a checklist of requirements to get some extra certificate attached to my eventual degree. I might even do that living in the International House requirement (local) once i come back to Edmonton from my study abroad stints if I feel up for it, even though it would triple-dip me into that requirement, although the lack of wired internet would be frustrating, as would another year away from my creature comforts. The experience and cultural friendships and (probably) leadership role would be worthwhile though.
Nothing much that I can speak to happened at work this week, although my boss wanted me to work on finding edge cases to the proposed very aggressive account lifecycle plan that they were coming up with and I found an edge case that he thanked me for bringing up and said that its presence alone would likely kibosh the proposed system (that I hate) going live in July, although maybe I should have kept it in my back pocket and held off on mentioning it even longer so that they’d have less chance of fixing it before launch heh. Just kidding, I don’t play around that way.
I did muse a bit though on how we’re seeing the cycle of life at work in the University. For years, our previous (and to some extent, current) leader had pushed the various other departments on central IT consolidation to save money, and pushing Google and its unlimited storage as a solution. But we really bungled up the account lifecycle stuff, and we have a ton of technical debt, problems that we have just kept on pushing down the line to deal with in the future, but that get bigger the longer that we leave them. Several of them have come to fruition now with Google forcing a data cap on us within the next couple years, together with the crushing budget cuts from the Conservative provincial government, and the proposed drastic changes from our department leader to solve this issue involve short-sighted (and in my opinion, immoral) measures to aggressively expire and delete data in such a way that it will be pushing departments toward decentralization again, to create their own file storage systems and move stuff off of Google so we as a central IT unit don’t randomly permanently delete their things when departments’ (now also decentralized) HR reps are a bit late renewing someone’s account, and destroying all the built-up trust in our central IT department.
Anyway, it’s overall a slow time of year and a lot of people are away on vacation, but most days I just get 3-5 tickets to work on, and they take less than half an hour to do, and then I’m sort of out of things to do for the day outside of ongoing mini-project spreadsheets and knowledge base article upkeep, both of which I do a little of every other day. And “thinking” of things for the above, apparently I have a reputation for being thorough and able to come up with important edge cases that others haven’t thought about, not only by my boss and the supervisor of the other team that got merged into ours (he now works as a programming lead on our team but relinquished the people management side to my boss), but also by the overall project manager.
It’s odd, after feeling last week that I was had satiated my cravings for Singapore and was now missing “home” in Edmonton again, this week saw an abject reversal and pangs of me missing Singapore again and wanting to do anything I can to go back to study abroad there for the fall. Not that I have anything that I could do right now. I will probably reach out to the Singapore government in a couple weeks.
This week also saw me with a really poor sleep cycle — I’ve always said I seldom really suffer from jet lag from my trips, at least not due to the plane travel itself (the short term 1-2 day thing just after emerging from a long plane trip), but the slightly longer-term effects of moving time zones must have really hit me hard this time, since every day for the past week has seen me waking up at 6-7 am or so, being overcome by sleepiness around 8-10 pm after dinner and yearning to take a 1 hour nap, then being too wide awake to sleep until past 2-3 am, regardless of whether I take a nap or not. I’d then fall asleep for an hour, wake up with a dream to write down around 4-5 am, then fall asleep again for 3-4 hours or so before involuntarily waking up again around 7 or 8 am. I do not use alarm clocks or any sort of wake up aid either, it just all happens on its own.
So sleep has been weird and truncated. The dreams have largely been fairly interesting though, at least on the nights that I remember them. I tried to push myself to not nap one evening, and went to bed at 10:30 pm or so instead, but I just ended up waking up at 4:30 am and being unable to go back to sleep as I was too refreshed. And while that’s close to a normal functioning time here, it didn’t help as my early morning meant I went back to a nap the following evening and a late actual sleep time that night. Whoops.
Oh well, I am guessing my sleep schedule will revert back to normal soon. The late sunlight outside (summer solstice is next week, Tuesday Jun 21st) probably doesn’t help, even though my lovely curtains do block it out for the most part. I could probably re-implement evening walks as well to help with refreshing myself before dinner, I’ll probably try that this upcoming week. It’s just an interesting sensation because I’m not on Singapore’s sleep/wake cycle either, so I’m not sure it’s jet lag because I’m only actually a couple hours offset from my preferred sleep cycle, but the need for an evening nap is something I’ve never felt before.
And talking about weird body changes since I returned, I’ve noticed that my hives issue has flared up a bit more aggressively too and I have no idea what the trigger for that has been, I think it started when in Singapore but it’s more noticeable back home here when I’m not out all the time and have the time to stop and inspect myself. It’s still under control thanks to the pills, but before the trip, I used to be able to get away with a pill every 1.5 days or so to keep my symptoms down, but after the trip that duration of effectiveness shrank so that I more or less need a pill every day, or three pills every two days or so. I hope it recedes before I decide to get un-lazy and do this bloodwork requisition test sitting next to me, that my doctor asked me to do a couple weeks after returning from SIngapore.
I’m also feeling a bit of strain from not knowing if I’m going abroad this July/August or not. It causes uncertainty and a feeling of “waiting for something to happen” that makes me unable to relax and definitely unable to reach At Peace with the World or anything like that. It affects both work (will I be here in a month?) as well as home (should I renew my lease? where will I store my items?) and online activities (will my main group watch be able to finish all the Haikyuu seasons on time if/before I go?) and various other aspects of my life. Oh well.
This, combined with the sleep thing, and my current Minecraft craze mentioned below, has made this week very odd and unproductive from a task-oriented and mindfulness point of view. That and how much anime I have to catch up on from just being gone for two weeks (and comatose for another week). It’s near the end of the current anime season so a lot of shows are wrapping up, and it’s been a really strong season with lots of shows I enjoy.
I visited the library this week and took a picture of the.. clouds above the library.
Aren’t they fluffy? Fuwa fuwa. I love the varied clouds in the Edmonton sky. I did borrow a book from the library, but I don’t want to talk about it yet as I haven’t read it. I also took a picture of this board in the library itself:
I didn’t contribute to it, following the chronicler’s creed of recording rather than participating. But really I was just too lazy. I was tempted to put up an ode to Tigey somewhere up there though. Maybe something like my soon to be classic haiku, An Ode to Tigey:
a link to my past,
a prayer for my future —
right now, paperweight.
Outside of personal things, Kynji‘s company/team won some sort of a national award this week featuring a kindergarten brochure that she designed for a client, which is super cool! She also gave me (and others, but I’m only recording mine here) a horoscope reading from a book that she had been perusing, based on my moon sign (Rat), sun sign (Pisces), and time of birth (Rabbit).
Moon/Sun (Rat/Fish): Always able to demonstrate their creativity, even if they tend to be shy and not desirous of facing the public. The Pisces Rat could be a prolific writer because of the Fish’s deep appreciation of human emotions and the written word. A “less charged” individual with peaceful inclinations (Rats are naturally aggressive and selfish, this says your Pisces tendencies drown out those emotions for the most part). This person values home and security above all else. Meditative, resourceful, sensitive, and productive.
Time (Rabbit): A soft-spoken and docile person with impeccable taste, you could inherit the Rabbit’s taste for diplomacy and be known for your astuteness and business acumen. You may be calculating and ambitious, but with your beautiful Rabbit manner, your associates will never know–until it’s too late.
The pronouns are off because one was a direct quote from the book and the other was a partially modified quote that I also then re-modified, but mine seems to be telling me that I’m on the right path at least. Horoscopes are obviously not always correct but I do like them, they are a low-effort source of fortune-telling fun, and vaguely also feel like mystical guiding signposts through life, and this one at least seems fairly on point for me and my life goal (this blog). It’s also amusing to find connections between horoscopes like this and things that happen in daily life, for example there’s a Question of the Day bot on Discord that runs on a couple other servers I lurk in and actively watch, and one of them asked a question this week that read, “What fictional item do you wish you owned in real life?” My answer was a portable dimensional home (from Dungeons and Dragons or various anime I’ve seen), and I realize that this fits in with the “home and security above all else” thing. It would be great to be able to travel but not have to rent a place wherever I go, which is the most expensive and annoying part of travel, but to just be able to pop “home” at the end of the day no matter where in the city I end up.
I wonder if my main Discord server would be up for a Question of the Day bot.
I largely spent my gaming time this week on Minecraft, particularly Thrandor‘s All The Mods 7 modded Minecraft server. It’s still going from several months ago, and I got a second wind for playing it, so this is possibly the first time that I’ve ever come back and “continued” a Minecraft map after leaving it for some time. Not that I’ve progressed very far still, but I at least have my computer-based item storage system set up now so I don’t have a bunch of chests strewn about the place, 36 health hearts so I’m practically immortal, and I’m now working on a little village for NPCs. Nak noted earlier in the week that I often seem to be focused on building homes for NPCs in Minecraft maps that I play and he’s actually right to some extent.
Minecraft has actually eaten into time that I need to do other things, but I know that my playing streaks last for a couple weeks at a time and then I lose the urge to play for months, so I’m hoping to get as much done and learn as much as I can in these two weeks before I lose interest, as I do genuinely enjoy the game and how complex (if occasionally buggy) many of the mods are, and this might be the last time I’ll probably get to play it for 2-3 years. It’s a constant journey of discovery with that game since the modpacks and mods in them are different every time I come back to the game due to general mod/modpack development, game versions changing, and some just falling out of favour entirely.
The Steam Next Fest happened this week and outside of a couple small games I never really got around to playing it due to Minecraft hogging all my computer time and resources. Apparently the Steam Summer Sale is next week as well, so that will likely end my Minecraft streak as I will definitely be looking at that. One game I did pick up and play slightly this week is Vampire Survivors, which is both absurdly cheap as well as fun. I didn’t realize it was an automatic walking/firing game, and all you do is pick what upgrades you want and where your character walks and faces, you don’t actually press a fire weapon key, which is neat. I hope to play more of it soon, though I noticed that my eyes got really tired really quickly when I played it, though maybe that was a fluke.
Other than those two, my anime group watch group’s daily assortment of AMQ (Lightcaller joined us for nearly the entire week this week since he’s on vacation from work — he usually only plays Friday and Saturday since he lives in Sweden and those are his nights for staying up late — so we had Satinel, Nak, Heg, him, and I playing this week), and a little bit of Diablo Immortal, which I now largely find boring, I didn’t play much else this week.
Plushie of the Week #54 – Rebel
I noticed in reviewing My Diary #008 last week that I had mentioned how I would probably create new Plushie of the Week entries for the other two turtles in our group of three sibling turtles once I got pictures of them, and they’re the last two plushies in our Main Crew of plushies or whatever we call them that don’t have their own plushie entries yet. I do have said pictures now, so it’s probably high time I gave them their own entries, although a lot of their pictures are interchangeable.
Rebel was part of a set of three little bipedal turtles, along with Toodles and Steroids, that came into our lives together in (we think) early 2004, when we still lived in Edmonton 4012. Like the other two, he came from a dollar store named Bargains, and cost 50 cents. I have no idea why he was named Rebel, nor why his Spanish nickname (all the three turtles had one) was Julio, but I do know that Kel got him because she was the middle sibling and he was the middle sized turtle, as they were and still are all slightly different in size. His tie was also a dark shade of green, compared to the other two turtles with lighter shades of green, so maybe that’s where his Rebel moniker comes from. The three of them love Uncle Orson, and snuggle up on his lap when possible, like in this picture that I’ve previously posted:
Here are some Rebel-specific photos, though.
From the front:
And then the front again, but showcasing his black bowtie:
Both Steroids and Toodles have green bow ties, but there were actually other turtles with different coloured bowties like red ones as well. They’re in a bag and I might feature them after I do Steroids‘ entry next week, or some time after that if I decide to go in another direction. I also went back to Toodles‘ entry this week and added a few updated pictures there.
Song of the Week #31
Title: Yume no Naka e
Artist: Atsuko Enomoto, Chihiro Suzuki
Album: Kareshi Kanojo no Jijou OST (1998)
It’s been two months and five blog entries since I last featured a Japanese song, and the one I wanted to feature this week is one of my top 5 favourite anime ending songs, though it took so long to feature this one because it’s the ending song to a show which I already featured the opening song from back in Song of the Week #7, so it felt like cheating to double dip so quickly. I love both songs in the show though and they’re both very meaningful to me.
This ending song held my #1 favourite ending song spot for a long time, holding off a bunch of challengers before it was finally dethroned by SotW #25, which in turn then held it until SotW #4 came along. The Song of the Week 7 link above lists some connotations and events that I link this song with — it has a very strong Singapore link due to the time period that it played and the “real life” visuals that it uses for the song, even though I didn’t watch it until December 2018, a strong link to Nak and Satinel since it was one of our first anime group watch shows, and a strong link to my University as well, particularly the Rutherford Library and the Tory Building.
But above and beyond that, Yume no Naka e, translated as Into a Dream, has other links for me as well that make it particularly powerful. Online, fan-translated lyrics of the song aren’t great at all, but as a site (local) (which also has other, earlier J-Pop renditions of the song) points out, the song is questioning whether the listener has found a goal or a dream in life to search for, and to reach out for said goal/dream. As you can see in the visuals below, which has a side by side comparison of the ever-changing visuals through all 26 episodes of the anime, several of the episodes feature a real-life walkthrough of a Japanese school, and the story itself is more or less a coming-of-age high school romance story, so it had very strong Singapore secondary school connotations for me when I first heard and saw it.
The fact that the video changes every episode vaguely represents, to me, the search that the person in the song lyrics is going through in order to try to find their life’s dream or goal, searching in both the physical spaces (live action videos), and their own mental spaces (animation scenes of friends), and then at the end finally going on an epic journey to try to reconcile or achieve their dream. It’s probably not actually meant like that, the show was produced with a really low budget and they probably just stuffed in whatever they could to save money, but it certainly is how I analyzed it, and why it mirrors so well with my own life and overcoming my grief and trauma over leaving Singapore, blogging about it in an exploration of my own memories and materials, and eventually even going back there earlier this month to reconcile some of my old memories.
It’s a very, very wistful song for me, and one that I consider a link to my past (but not a prayer for my future, nor a paperweight). I’ll talk more about a specific event that this reminded me of in the Memory Snippets section below, but in a sense our anime group watch of this particular show and the presence of this particular song/video was a major factor in kickstarting the process of me looking back at the 15 years of my life that I spent in Singapore, and working through all the pain around my departure and our family’s migration, then reconciling what we did and what it meant to me and finding ways to overcome it until it no longer hurt, and then going back there now to finally embrace all those old memories and bring them into the present fold of what makes me who I am now. Those memories were a constant source of angst back during my periods of depression that I always tried to run away from as they seemed insurmountable, but I think that this song played a big part in how anime dug the knife in so deeply, and twisted so hard, that the box spilled open and I had to find a way to finally deal with it and overcome it.
Memory Snippet of the Week #38
As mentioned in the Song of the Week segment above, that song has always been linked to one specific Singapore incident for me, for no other good reason than how my brain decided to link the two together at one point. But to me it was an extremely important event in the Singapore portion of my life, basically an event that I associated with saying goodbye to my friends.
This incident happened on November 18 1998, a month and a half before we left for Singapore, and is what I deem the Chalet incident. The school year was coming to a close (though it wouldn’t actually end until mid December), and my time in Singapore was also coming to an end (we left at the end of December, 1998). I don’t think it was organized for my leaving in particular, but for some reason, Huihan and Paulene were organizing a 2 day, 1 night chalet rental stay at Sentosa Island, a little island just off the southern coast of Singapore that’s connected to it by a road and a cable car system, for the entire class to celebrate the end of year. They rented several rooms and our entire class (2L) was invited to go, as well as the entire neighbouring class next to ours (2K) that was the other GEP class in our cohort.
There were several pieces of drama that I still remember that were tied in to this for me. Firstly, being a teenager with a small world view at the time, there were many things that I disliked about this, I didn’t like that the other class, 2K, was being invited as I apparently didn’t exactly like several of them at the time. I was far closer with our own specific 2L class and had issues with a couple of the people in 2K. I was also figuring out the relationship that I had with Huihan, how to work through it and how to leave it since we both knew that I would be leaving at the end of the year, and my diary was full of rubbish about how my friends didn’t understand me, noting squabbles that we were having, wondering what true love meant, wondering if everyone hated me, that sort of teenage angst.
Secondly, I had been against my leaving the country in the first place, and had fought with my parents against this, although there was no way they would be letting me stay. This fight spilled over into this chalet trip, because they were not letting me stay overnight in a chalet with boys and girls there, whereas to me this was my last major event where I could hang out with my friends outside of school before I left. It seemed that my friends might even apparently have changed the dates for me — it was originally scheduled in December and it looked like I wouldn’t be able to make it, but then it got changed to mid-November instead. My parents said they would let me go for the first evening but that Dad would pick me up at 9pm — we had a loud screaming argument over this and Mom even picked up one of my L5R card boxes that was sitting around the house at the time and threw it down on the table in a fit of anger, smashing and breaking the cardboard (she would later tape this up for me — I still have it). They eventually “extended” the 9pm curfew to 10pm, but to me this was fairly meaningless as I wanted to stay overnight, and also because I wouldn’t actually be staying there with them on the first day either, I would just arrive in the late afternoon or possibly even evening to hang out with some of them. I felt like they didn’t respect the bonds I shared with my friends or how much they meant to me, squabbles or not.
Thirdly, I was our class monitor during this last semester (or two semesters) of time that I was here in Singapore, so I felt like I had some sort of responsibility to be there and to keep them safe or something. In my diary, I complained about how they “wasted” time going to the arcade, playing soccer, going bowling (which I never have done to this day and was probably a bit jealous of), and cycling, which they could have done at any other time, instead of hanging out with my egotistical self. I wasn’t even with them during the parts of the trip that they did all those at! However, what really apparently got me going was an argument with some of my friends about gambling money (several whole dollars!) over games of cards, which happened at night in the chalet rooms before and after I left. Influenced, I suppose, by Singapore’s focus on morality and my assigned duty as a monitor and all, I found this to be reprehensible and wanted them to stop. Zixiang apparently accused me of abusing my power for that and I contemplated reporting them to the teachers when we were back in school, but never did. I don’t think I was a stick in the mud in general, I got into quite a lot of trouble with the teachers and discipline office during my time in Dunman and Rosyth as well, but that had crossed a line for me at that point in time, as that had not been something that we had done as a class before. I could feel that everyone was going to be changing even after I moved on, I suppose. They were short-term grudges that didn’t mean anything in the long run, though, but it inflamed the blame I put on my parents for how they wouldn’t let me stay there overnight to watch over them, and this got lumped in with the blame for them moving the family overseas against my wishes.
And lastly, despite all that nonsense, the chalet scene sticks out to me very strongly because of one powerful scene — Huihan and I took off from the rest of the group sometime past 9:30 pm or 9:45 pm or so, walking along the darkened chalet beach by ourselves to chat with each other as the warm wind swooped in from offshore to wash over us. She accompanied me until my father came to pick me up from the parking lot on his motorcycle. Although I would still consider us a pairing, although we never formally broke up, although we would still meet in class, and although she even stopped by our Tampines 294 apartment during the holidays before I left the country to give me a Christmas card, those scenes of walking along a darkened beach and then Dad picking me up from the edge of a parking lot are still imprinted in my mind like it was our goodbye scene. It became a really pivotal moment in my mind’s interpretation of my memories even though it didn’t feel like that at the time.
This chalet incident haunted me for a long, long time. I’ve written elsewhere in now-deleted places that I consider that beach a place where part of me died, or was separated from me and was forever suspended there in time, walking along the beach and sitting on a big flat rock with Huihan, refusing (in my fantasies) to go to the carpark where Dad was waiting for me after having beeped me on the pager that he lent me, and instead drawing out those few moments forever. I still dream about my friends in their Secondary 2 forms extremely often 25 years later, partly due to how abruptly they were wrenched out of my life without closure and how much they meant to me, although maybe the dreams are psychic messages that that part of me that I left behind keeps sending me across time and space.
I don’t know which chalet this is, but I’m not even sure I ever want to return to this place to reclaim the part of me I left behind, if I would even still recognize it anymore, so Sentosa was not a place I even tried to visit on my recent rose-tinted goggles trip to Singapore. Maybe the next one.
Last Year’s Entry #7
My corresponding diary entry from last year is My Diary #009. This was published on Jun 20 2021.
Funnily, that account deletion work I complained about last year is *still* not done, and is lumped in with the account lifecycle thing I talked about earlier in the Work section above. I hope my Singapore study abroad pulls through and I can get out of here before the changes take place, so I can watch the cascading collapse of the wall of cards that is our University from afar, since I believe that there’s no way this can be implemented properly (in terms of without massive timeline changes.
Our province lifted the last of our COVID-19 restrictions this week, which nicely mirrors the initial lifting last year. There’s only a few “suggested” mask-wearing mandates now, outside of some places like clinics, I believe. I’m still going to wear them indoors though, but I don’t mind them trying it, although as I recall this backfired a bit last year as our cases then spiked. The bad part about this is how our Conservative government refuses to accurately track cases now to hide any spike effect that might actually happen from this decision. They’re cowards. That being said, it’s really interesting to compare reactions last year toward trying to open up the borders again as soon as possible, and how that then played out in history since the Omicron variant arrived in November 2021, which caused all the restrictions to last even longer. Air travel restrictions now are lower than they were this time last year though, and I’ve taken two fairly long trips since that time too, something I would never have guessed would happen a year ago!
Talking about a year ago, reading this reminds me that the Calgary Stampede is happening again soon. I’m vaguely tempted to go down there for the weekend but probably won’t this time. If anything, I can just visit K-Days (local) this year, which is basically the same thing on a smaller scale, and held in Edmonton instead of Calgary. Just look at that gaudy webpage though, yeesh.
I wasn’t actually aware that I was aware of Steam Next Fest as early on as last year, since the one in February of this year was the first one I really looked at and participated in. Certainly not a thing I feel like I have to participate in every time though, just when I feel like it and have extra time, but I do appreciate that Steam/Valve have been doing this for some time now.
There were a ridiculous number of links I had to generate and screenshot local page copies for. I remember being frustrated with this last year because I hadn’t discovered the effectiveness of Firefox’s built-in page screenshot tool yet, and was still using ShareX for it, which is very often inaccurate for the type of snips I do. A couple of the links were now dead so I removed them, but I’m happy that most of the links still more or less worked.
As mentioned further above, my sleep was really truncated this week, but yet I had a more or less full lineup of dream entries. I also found it interesting that most of my dream entries were actually from the truncated 1-2h part of my sleep between 3 and 5 am or so, shortly after I finally manage to coax myself to sleep each night, instead of my longer period of sleep between 4-5 am and 8-9 am, which I generally woke up blank from. How odd. They weren’t snippets for the most part either, but often fully fleshed out stories with multiple scenarios, especially the one on Jun 15th.
Jun 13 2022
- I visited a modified version of my Dunman High School with some of my 1L/2L friends, I remember Huihan and Allen for example but there were at least 8 of us, split across two or three different groups and featuring some outsiders as well. I wasn’t sure if we were allowed into the school in the first place while school was in session, so I stood around near the front of the gate and played with an exhibit that involved arranging some of my plushies — Orson, Toodles, Ally, and more, but conspicuously lacking Tigey — at the front of a small, top-down view, model scale version of our old classroom, and then taking a photo opportunity with them as “students”.
- However, most of the people I was in forged on ahead anyway and I eventually joined them with some misgivings, one of the girls eventually pointed out a sign that showed that the campus was public and people were welcome even when classes were in session, though.
- We visited our old classroom, though it was located on the ground floor of a square pavilion that was more like Rosyth‘s layout, rather than a round one like Dunman‘s. The students were out of the classroom for Phys Ed class, but we could see their bags and clothes strewn on their tables and chairs.
- We wandered to the front of the class and noticed a little hand-drawn picture on a poster pinned below the chalkboard that was a modified version of a memorable doodle that Allen had apparently drew during our year here — something similar to stick figure images of two people under an umbrella, though I’m not certain what the exact image was — apparently this was some sort of indication that the current class was keeping alive a tradition that we had started years ago, and we were both surprised and happy as this validated us somehow.
- We then headed to the canteen for lunch, and this canteen was modeled after the old Dunman High canteen, a square, covered area without walls and with lots of long tables and benches, along with stalls on one end. There were food trays laid out on a table near where we entered, with a tray of black fried rice and several other trays of food that went with it, and many of the people tucked into that.
- I was hesitant to do so as I couldn’t find any indication as to what the food was for, but again no one else seemed worried. I sidled up to a table where Brad, James, and someone else from work were eating, and I heard Brad start talking about the rice so I stopped to listen in as they looked at me. One of them said that there was a baby canteen on the other side of the school and there were similar food trays there too, so it was probably fine for us to tuck in. None of the other actual students in the school seemed to take offence at us digging in too.
- I decided not to partake though, my reasoning after all being that I loved the canteen food here anyway and wanted noodles rather than rice. I had brought 40 cents with me, so I went to one of the stalls, and ordered a plate of fried noodles for 40 cents, but one of my girl friends who was with me and had lent me a dollar for use was playful-unhappy that I had not only not partook of the free black fried rice, but had ordered such a cheap dish to boot, so she took back her dollar once it was clear it was leftover money anyway.
- My friends actually tried to quietly intercept my order and get rid of my dish when I was sitting at a bench with them while waiting for it to be cooked, so that I would eat fried rice with them, but I managed to tell them not to — we all apparently felt that we no longer really fit in with the school but I said that this was my way of reconciling some of my memories of the school.
- Editor: This 40 cent fried noodle dish is a dish and price dear to my heart — I think this was actually a Peiying or Rosyth era dish but there was definitely a time in school when I did order a steaming plate of 40-cent fried noodles on a somewhat regular basis from a store whose layout was similar to the one in my dream here and several other canteen dreams. I could see some of the other food on the menu as well that looked familiar — Mee Rebus, Mee Siam, and more, all at very cheap prices. Also, I woke up feeling a bit sad and wistful. But it’s interesting to see the effects of my school visit bleed in to my school-related dreams (particularly the part about re-visiting the school and feeling sad).
Jun 14 2022
- I was in a sort of dream Singapore with more or less only four general areas in the country I could and needed to visit, roughly in the north, south, east, and west corners. They were arranged on the main MRT lines, so it formed an upside down capital T, and the south point was in the middle of the east and west points, and it was more or less equidistant from the other three directions.
- For some reason, I had need to travel between the areas prior to meeting up with my family and then travelling around the country again, I seem to remember some sort of delivery needing to be done. We lived in the east, but I travelled to the north with a few items to do this delivery, and my original plan was to then go home again after my delivery so that I could pick up some items I wanted to bring around with me, like a book.
- Instead, I met Jah in a northern residence block and we ended up being sucked into a Scrabble tournament. I thought we did decently, but the tournament host told us after the end that we had taken 8th and 9th place out of 10. I asked how it was possible that we ended up with different scores if we were collaborating and playing as a team. She said we had both actually won 8th, and to treat it as so, but our names wouldn’t both fit on the same digital scoreboard line as we had too many letters in our combined names. In a Scrabble tournament? Really?
- I don’t remember anything about the game as the dream fast forwarded to that, but I do know that when I stood up and surveyed the board at the end of the game, it was our final turn and we had a high scoring word in our rack — with our letters, we could form either Jinxed or Jinxes, and we had quite a lot of room on the bottom third of the board to possibly play it. We didn’t have time to sit and think about it though as I was going to be late for my family meeting.
- I bemoaned the fact that I had been caught up in the game, although I had finished my deliveries, I didn’t really have time to go back to my home to get the book. It took easily about half an hour to travel between any of the points, and a bit more going from any two points that didn’t involve the southern one as the start or end goal. This travel was done using the MRT trains, and I remember being in a train station and watching them go by. There was a sense that I was visiting some HDB flats on some “back streets” that had a great view of the station but aesthetically felt like I was entering a house through its window when I went there to deliver. I did at some point go home to get my book before my dream ended though.
- I also went window shopping at some point and noticed an online listing for Singapore gas canisters filled with petrol that a car owner was willing to fill up at a petrol station and then send overseas to Canada for $114 or so per canister plus a shipping fee of $10. It still seemed like a great deal compared to gas prices back home, although I didn’t drive.
- I did ask about ordering one but said something like it couldn’t be delivered to my house because I had someone else in the family who was doing the driving, not me, and I mentioned my younger brother. I did not have the knowledge as to how to install and use the canisters and they would be too heavy to bring elsewhere.
- The seller said I could get some movers or something to transport the canister to wherever the car was, and it would still probably be cheaper than buying gas directly from Canadian gas stations. I joked that I could probably ask them to install it/empty the canister into the car tank and even that would still be cheaper. He misunderstood one part of what I said, assuming that I had meant that the male relative lived with me and thus was actually my son, and he said something to the effect of how I could indeed ask the movers to do that, just as long as I asked my son to keep out of the way and let them handle moving it to the car. I knew Jon was an adult and would be able to figure it out on his own given a hose and the canister though.
- There was also a food scene in the northern area somewhere in the mix, where I was trying to try some sort of food from a store but had to describe it before I could taste it and couldn’t actually do so because I had never actually eaten that food before. It was something similar to Kaya Toast, which came well recommended by several people, and that I could roughly figure out the expected taste from knowing the two halves of the word, but I still wasn’t sure. I postponed it and it ended up in some sort of game or task list that resembled a pack of cards.
- Editor: We had just talked about and compared gas prices in our Discord 3 days ago on the 11th, and I think that played into this dream. Also, my childhood homes have all more or less been in the west, north, and east ends of the city and our final home, Tampines 294, was indeed quite far to the east of the country. I believe the east also represented Canada on occasion in the dream, though. Lastly, kaya toast was a dish that Kel had recommended to me when I visited Singapore but I never did get around to trying it (because, well, bread).
Jun 15 2022
- I lived on the 2nd floor of either a hotel or a large house with a bunch of rooms that were rented out to different people. I was in a single-room unit. Throughout the dream, I had a parade of friends and different guests come through the place in different scenes, though most weren’t based on any people from real life. There were also two ways up to my room and two doors that I could ultimately enter from. Adjoining doors down the rear corridor were the “public” doors and led to personal rooms, shops, and unknown other things, but most of the rooms also connected to the “main house” out their “private” front door, which was considered a back door where they could reach the domestic maids that belonged to the owner of the house, but the house portion of the dreamspace also had a main entrance that people could reach our rooms from.
- One of the corridors took me and a couple friends to a door that led into a University-style lecture theatre that I barely realized was in session at some point, and I stopped myself from disturbing them by opening the door and embarrassing myself. There were also a couple forgotten scenes where various doors were important, even though I didn’t know what was behind most of them.
- I was running a business from my room regarding helping people with their passport or job applications or something like that. But there were several different scenes of people joining the room and the main scene. Earlier ones that I only vaguely remember had to do with a banking thing, a train station thing, a word puzzle of some kind that we had to solve, having to figure out and pick out the true items from the forgeries in a group of items, and scenes where I ventured out of the house for various interactions with others. In general there were many “weird people” I had to help that I understood were transient and vulnerable members of society, as we lived in a rough neighbourhood. But I had a number of good friends that would come visit too, and I appreciated them.
- One of the earlier incidents I remember vividly is when I opened the private front door and saw three people standing there, two guys and one girl. They asked if it was true that I helped people with anything at all to do with proofreading and writing their application. I said no and they seemed disappointed, but I clarified and said that I helped people with most things. I asked if their request or job ad was political in nature, they said no, and I said I’d help them. They seemed relieved and came in.
- I had been doing a jigsaw puzzle on the floor in front of the TV before they arrived, in which I was given or had already done the outside pieces to start and was now purposely working on middle pieces that formed little islands that didn’t connect up with the edge pieces. I pushed that off to the side so that they had space to sit. There was also a contractor I had hired to come in to fix something in the building and he came in soon after them through the private front door as well, I waved him in and toward the other door while I talked with the three people.
- One of the three people had an application for a job that he really wanted down the street from the house, and him and the other male friend really wanted me to help them pick what to say from a list of phrases that they have. The third person, the girl, seemed to stay out of it.
- The two guys didn’t speak very good English, and although I helped them the best I could, in the end they still had to choose what to pick, and their final “resume” was on a thin and long piece of paper with the words slightly out of focus or smudged, and which looked more like the cocktail menu at a cheap restaurant trying to be fancy. The sentences made no sense as well. However, the two men were very happy with it, and I escorted them out the main door along with another female friend that had also joined the dream.
- The girl that had accompanied them was still hanging around once I saw them off, and I made an offhand comment that I wasn’t sure about the quality of what we had just written. She agreed and said that they had done a lousy job, and both my friend and I laughed in relief and agreement. We said we weren’t sure if she would have been offended if we said that as we weren’t sure how close she was to them. She said she wasn’t at all and we invited her back to our room to chat.
- Another incident involved a client whom I thought had missed their meeting and wasn’t going to arrive. I didn’t particularly like them so that was ok. But it was night and I was watching the public landing from my back door, which was a long, straight corridor that went from the second landing down some stairs to the ground floor and continued on some ways. I saw the client’s family coming down the hall, recognizing them by the bright colours of the clothes that their grandfather was wearing, almost like a Hawaiian shirt. I also noticed someone that I recognized as a dream friend coming in behind them though and she also seemed to be hobbling or otherwise having trouble of some kind as she was moving slower than even the grandfather.
- I went out to meet the family and pointed them toward my room, telling them to go along and that I would meet them there. I then went to meet my friend and helped her toward my room as well, as we each put one hand around the other person’s waist in a rather intimate way so that she wouldn’t fall over. She did seem happy about this, especially when we passed one of the other ground floor rooms, which was a restaurant that was still open late at night and had indoor and outdoor tables that still had people, and a couple of people turned to stare at us as we walked by. I was a bit embarrassed but she clung on tighter to me in a possessive pride sort of way.
- I talked to her about and asked to see something of hers to do with her body. I don’t recall exactly what I asked for, though I feel it was some sort of action or dance or reenactment, but I did add the disclaimer that it was only if she didn’t mind or it wasn’t attached to any trauma. She said she could show me a couple examples, but would be skipping an incident when she was out at an eatery with her boyfriend when she was 14 years old and a group of 11 year olds slipped a date rape drug into her drink just to see what would happen, and caused her to faint and black out and not remember anything else from that day. I nodded as I escorted her back to our room. This was also the only friend whom I could almost map to an actual RL friend, I remember thinking that she looked like or seemed to be somehow based on Debbie, but wasn’t her.
- There were two other incidents I remember involving the corridors. The first was another female friend coming up the public back way, and I was coming down to meet her when I saw a large Asian man drop some coins on the floor in front of her, and then knock her over and pseudo-pinned her to the ground messily while “picking up the coins” on his hands and knees, as two of his friends watched on in amusement. She was right in front of a door to a nondescript shop next to the restaurant, and I remember hearing that this was some sort of Asian gangster shop where they laundered money and also gang-pressed people into servitude.
- The guy tried to bundle my friend into the shop, but I rushed down to save my friend, punching the guy and sending him flying off of her and then taking my friend’s arm and pulling her to the safety of the restaurant front, where there were plenty of witnesses able to watch anything that might happen. They pulled knives as we regained our balance, but they were unable to move because of where we had retreated to, so they disengaged angrily and we were able to leave safely.
- There was another incident near the end of the dream out the private front door, where we could hear the master of the house yelling at the maids for something they had done or not done. A tall female friend and I crept out once things quietened down as we had to retrieve something from the bottom level, and we could see and hear the maids sobbing together in another room. We tiptoed quietly back up the stairs, each of us holding 3 ping pong balls in our hands and trying not to make any noise. But then I dropped one of the balls as we were going up the stairs, which bounced through the banister and back down onto the ground floor with a clatter. I rushed down to grab it as my friend also dropped all three of her balls in a panic. Abandoning stealth, I focused on catching the four balls and did so by watching their bounce angles carefully. I thne told her to come to me as I’d use a teleport item to get us back to our room safely in case the racket had disturbed the master and he was on his way to come scold us. If he never saw us he couldn’t be sure which patron had done it.
- Editor: This house definitely was vaguely inspired by my Singapore homestay house, and the teleport item felt like it was from the modded Minecraft server that I was currently playing on.
Jun 16 2022
- I remember being on vacation in a foreign place and visiting an art gallery where my own artwork or something was hung up for display. There was a sense of only having limited time to visit different locations in the country while on my trip, and so I had to pick and choose what I saw, but that the gallery was a really important place to visit in order to prove my eligibility to even be in the country so I absolutely had to see it. The dream also involved me visiting several other places, but I don’t remember any of them.
Jun 17 2022
- I remember visiting a tall and strange shopping complex with only a few shops per level, but which had many levels in the structure. There were two elevators that brought people up and down as needed, and the shops on each level were basically arranged around the central lobby area on each floor, and that was it. There were at most five shops per level.
- What happened in the dream is fuzzy, but there was a school scene at one point so I guess one of the floors or shops opened out into a school area. There was also a scene involving waiting for a delivery of a roast chicken or something to a family living in one of the units that adjoined the elevator lobby, before I went in to that house to try to talk to the family and get something for my quest.
- My next dream has a number of snippets which started off involving a futuristic train system inspired by part of Singapore’s east-west train line. There were a couple groups of people in the dream and we were travelling separately along the train line and stopping at a couple of the eastern stations for who knows what.
- I was in there somewhere and although the group I travelled with wasn’t static, I remember at one point accompanying and helping out a 3 or 4 year old girl and hoisting her up onto a stool to watch two people I knew use computer consoles to pilot a spaceship or something. A narrator character commented that she was still at the edge where children were very observant and didn’t really know what anything meant and could make sharp, unfiltered observations on life.
- At another point, a couple groups of people including me were on a spaceship piloted by a suave renegade captain of some kind whom the government didn’t like and was trying to capture. We were apparently going near the government palace, or a separate government planet or something.
- I “saw” a rebel attack a palace guard that was on patrol near the entrance of the palace area. The guard had a fixed route and was wearing the front half, the head portion, of a lion dance costume over his own head, while the rear half was left to drag on the floor behind him. The rebel charged in to attack him by knocking him over the head with a big stick while the guard yelled out in pain and ran further into the maze of corridors with the rebel chasing him.
- I wondered why the government made the guards patrol this area alone — it was the only/main entrance of the building so it was by far the most dangerous part of the guards’ patrol route, but there were several ways to make it safer (patrolling in pairs, a permanent guard here, etc).
- At some point, our space captain was detained and then was told he was going to be put to death due to assaulting a government agent that was part of a small group that had boarded his spaceship at some point. He was still free to walk around though and our group told him we were going to leave because a girl in our group had to pursue some sort of business elsewhere. He nodded and said not to worry about him, his associates and crewmates would get him out. Probably. He flashed us a nervous smile.
- In a separate part of the dream, I, Jon, and Kel all had our own Steam Decks, and we had brought it along with us in our travel suitcases as we went around that futuristic train system doing our visits. However, at one point, we discovered that Kel‘s Steam Deck had vanished, which meant that we probably left it on one of our previous stops somewhere. She was upset at this but we had no real way of tracking it down, especially since she had shown no interest in using it for quite some time up until that point, and we had done a full circuit of all the other places that we were visiting already before she tried to pull it out only to find it missing, so it could have been left behind in any of our stops. It was apparently a repeating circuit that we were doing though, so we were going to start from the first place again and keep an eye out for the missing Steam Deck this time.
Jun 18 2022
- I was staying with friends in an “overnight camp” sort of format in some dorm rooms on the 3rd or 4th floor of a shopping centre. I remember Yongrui and Allen being there in particular, though there were a number of people overall. We were here on a temporary basis and not everyone was present for every sleepover, some parents didn’t allow them to stay overnight, some allowed them to stay overnight on weekdays but not weekends, and so on.
- In addition, the “camp” event only went on for so long, in particular I remember a scene where it was late Friday night and Yongrui said that he couldn’t be here on weekends and Monday was our final day so this would be his last night here since we would all be leaving on Monday. I was really sad at this event coming to an end.
- I don’t actually remember much about the event, however I remember that one of the things we did was sneak out in the middle of the night, descend through the escalators of the deserted and dark shopping mall, and go to the neighbouring shopping mall in order to explore it. Although there were only two neighbouring malls and they weren’t that big (and it was night so everything was likely closed anyway), we spent five hours exploring the first mall and thus completely ran out of time for the second one. We then hurried back and snuck back into bed before morning came and our escapades were discovered by the teachers that were there.
- I remember Minecraft making an impact on one or two of the scenes as well, though I’m not sure how. I had the feeling that I was trying to build or rebuild something at some point using a weird input cube that had to be built right where it was and couldn’t be moved, but it wasn’t something I absolutely had to do — like doing it would lead to some storyline and not doing it would lead to another different story, and even if I built it there might have been an additional option of whether to use some sort of extra component or not.
- Editor: The set of three malls located by each other were definitely inspired by the Tampines malls that I visited several times in Singapore last month, and used to stay fairly close to when I lived there
Jun 19 2022
- This dream snippet took place in a generic school, particularly in the computer lab, where there were 3 rows of long computer desks joined together, and a computer assigned to each member of the class of 18 or so people, each spaced about four or five feet away from each other.
- Everyone in class had been playing a game that they had chosen out of a list of two or three games, as part of a class assignment, but we then had to “turn in” scores for our class as a group before people could leave for lunch break or their next class or whatever. The thing was that about halfway through turning in the scores, which had to be done one by one on a separate handheld object that we passed from one classmate to the next, a new game was released and the last couple people who joined the class late got to play it and submit scores for them.
- Half the class didn’t care about it and wanted to just move on to the next class, but I knew a couple people wanted to try out the new game, and were just too shy to speak up about it, so as class monitor, I said that we had to pass the object back to the front and do another round of scores because I wanted to archive my scores and check out the new game and I’m sure others would as well.
- Some people got mad at that, especially the people in the latter half of the class that already had the chance to check it out, but I knew that some of the quieter people were grateful for that. No one could actually disobey me anyway, so the handheld object, that looked like a black ball, got passed back to the front of the class and quietly went on another circuit around the room, which took about 45 seconds to a minute per person.
- When it got to me, the boy after me irritatedly asked me to hurry up and pass it on to him already but I said no, I had only just gotten it, and to wait. I had a chance to check out the new game itself and it involved someone balancing on a haphazard one-car roller coaster on an odd, descending track that looked like we were descending a large Snakes and Ladders board that was stood up vertically on its edge, as the track went from right to left, then a vertical curved drop, then from left to right exactly below the above track, then a vertical curved drop, etc, then right to left again, etc. It was also possible to drop off the track entirely and fall back onto the roller coaster car further down the track.