whenever i leave singapore after a retreat there (retreat…i’m still amused by that), i find myself regretting the things i didn’t get to do. this time’s no different.
although i managed to visit the highly-recommended-by-my-junior changi chapel and museum, eat tau kwa pau and katong laksa with a lovely lady called lady, have a short conversation with a fellow medic, meet up with the saints, attend sunday service in a cinema(!), watch the tokyo metropolitan symphony orchestra perform a grieg piano concerto with a local pianist, discuss submandibular salivary gland stones with an old friend, catch up with my former room mate whom i haven’t seen in 2 years, talk non-stop with a friend over siao loong pau, find out why my tutor has decided to work in nepal, share my quarter-life crisis with a lawyer-to-be, line up for icecream for ben & jerry’s free cone day, eat lunch with 2 people whom i miss very much, spend 4 hours at the singapore art museum, have dinner with family…
…i am mourning the fact that i missed the christian lacroix exhibition at the national museum, forgot to buy “the motorcycle diaries” and “trainspotting” at hmv (only S$18 for two books aargh aargh!), and didn’t have time to check out hortpark, the botanical gardens and, yet again, the science centre.
i sound utterly ungrateful, don’t i? i’m just being unnecessarily dramatic.
the truth is, i remember walking around the exhibits at the art museum yesterday, stuff i don’t understand and can’t interpret other than appreciate the beauty of some of the works, and thinking, “i am so happy“. yet i felt selfish for thinking that way because it suggests that i am unable to be happy in the usual circumstances of my life – in kl/seremban, no company other than the ones i share a classroom with, mega bookstores that never restock books by ernesto guevara, a lack of ben & jerry’s outlets, all shrouded by a non-progressive mentality that i am guilty of myself.
it suggests that i envision happiness as a lotus eater life, always seeking pleasure and never fulfilling responsibilities.
anyway, it wasn’t supposed to be a trip that would involve thinking. my recipe for the last 4 days included only ice cream and relics. who would’ve thought that it was one of the least shallow periods i’ve had in a while?
be prepared for a host of photographs and products of pondering in the days to come.