Sunday, October 26, 2008

Ladies Rule!

Dainty she may look but guys out there, try challenging her to a 5 km run if you dare...for she packs a lethal finishing to the tape. And she is none other than Winnie - my running partner.

This morning GE run (26 Oct, Sunday on a Deepavali holiday) organised by Great Eastern for all the fitness conscious ladies was for a charitable purpose and proceeds to the cancer cause. Two events, the competitive 10 km was flagged off @ 0730 hrs and the fun 5 km run flagged off one hour later @ 0830 hrs. More than 5,000 runners participated in each event and in all more than 10,000 female runners from all walks of lives. It was cloudy of sorts but not likely to rain any moment though, cooling enough to say the least.

After the flagged off for the 5 km @ slightly over 0830 hrs near the Esplanade, I slowly inched my way to the finishing point at the Padang. Got myself a vantage point slightly away from the finishing line, carefully timed my watch for in half an hour time, I should be watching out for Winnie making a dash to the finishing line. Thinking I should not have a problem picking her up with my perfect eyesight (save for my 老花眼) but I was proven wrong. Almost 40 mins had passed, many sped past but still no sign of her and I wondered why. Suddenly, I felt a push on my bag which I slinged in one arm and surprise, surpise, she was standing behind me looking gay and not a tinge of tiredness shown at all. She had her drink at the finishing point, rested for a while but did not see me anywhere around. She then decided to make a slight de-tour and spot-on she found me still cranking my neck looking out for her. She had finished a creditable time of 36 mins plus and in the process, beating alot of youngsters along the way. What a finish, man. She could have even finished a sub 35 mins timing had it not for the big crowd that slowed everyone to a crawl at the starting point. All the training and hard sweat did not disappoint in the end.

One down to end the year on a high and we'll be gearing up for longer distance come next year. Kudos to you, Winnie!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Gathering of Some Ex CIASers

(Jeannie on the far right & Irene seated behind her. Ada is just behind me and further back, Dion)

The much awaited get-together of long lost colleagues dated back during our airport days in the swinging 80s finally took place at Sakura Orchard recently. As it was a lunch gathering, a pity many of our former colleagues could not make it due to prior work commitments.

Well, yours truly me, so happened to be the only thorn among the roses, an honour indeed! We certainly have had good conversation, and much catching up. Oh yes, I have not met Irene for at least some good 20 years (not to be reminded of our age though), she is still keeping that cool look & suffice to say, pretty enuf and this is probably thanks to CX for their fine grooming of their cabin crew. We have the unmistakable sweet smile of Dion (ex Mary) who, by the way is a hairstylist and a boss herself still reminds me of that young & chatty lady at the airport then. Regrettably, she won't get to do my business for reason I don't have to divulge much from my physical appearance, obvious right? And there is this petite Jeannie who is in spa & facial business now, glowing as usual but the sternness in her disposition has waned over the years, not totally though. Finally, the forever young looking Ada Goh, who now has all the time in the world to contemplate what job to do after serving CX diligently all these years. Trust me Ada, service line is still for your taking as your expertise is certainly sought after. I am still me, nothing much to comment and I hope ex comrades like Daniel, Ang Kok Chye, Alfred, Evelyn Tan, Annie Wong, Barry Sim, our ex boss Michael Ng, Sylvia Cheong, Clifford Gabriel, Ismail Kassim, Brian Pereira and those I have missed out due to no faults of mine could join us in another dinner gathering in the not so far future.

Always nice to catch up with old old friends and colleagues for old time sake lah.

Friday, October 17, 2008

The Blind Girl On The Piano

This young Korean toddler is just 5 years of age, born blind who is adopted by a kind childless couple but the amazing talent in music she has in her is simply unbelievable. She really touched the hearts of many, I am moved just by watching this video. She is a gem.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Two Races In Six Days

Ran two races in six days, the 4km 'Run For Hope' on 5 Oct organised by the National Cancer Society and the 6.6km Maritime Nautical Run this morning by Maritime Port Authority (MPA). Both two races were held at East Coast Lagoon. While the former was mainly a social run for the cancer charity fund raising, the latter was more competitive in every aspect.

Both events were held in the morning, flagged off at about 0800 hrs. The weather on 5 Oct was so cool, quite cloudy though. It was a relaxing affair for me, I did not have to go all out to complete the 4km race in my best time as I was pacing my running partner, WK who was running in such race for the first time. The weather, though threatening to rain had held out well throughout the race. The run was not exhaustive for me but still sweat poured easily. WK, in only 3 practices prior to this run had never covered more than 4km in one go but in this race, she was able to hold her own till the end. What a finish it was, lesser than 30 mins it took and best of all, among the early batch of runners too. Oh yes, rain came after the race. By then, we had a hearty breakfast in Holland V.

The Singapore Nautical Run was actually a last minute entry for me. Yesterday evening, Chua called me to replace one of his colleagues who had taken ill. He needed to find two replacements. Unable to get the last replacement at this hour, he summoned his school going son, just 13 year-old to fill up the big shoes of an adult. Poor son of his, have to do his father's bidding and what a tough father he is. The participants were mostly from the maritime industry competing either in individual or team event. Ours was a team event under BatamFast, comprising a team of 6 persons. Flagged off at 0815 hrs by Transport Minister Raymond, the heat from the morning sun was already felt. I shot off leaving my team chasing, opened my pace and was holding well for at least 4km. Paul, the angmoh MD of BatamFast was just behind me throughout and slowly but surely, he sped past me. Certainly, he is the fitter one. The morning heat, unlike the last Sun race, was getting into me by now. I decided not to push myself too much, pulled to a halt and started walking. After a short breather, I continued running. I still have 2km left but it seemed like eternity to me, coupled with the unforgiving heat not wanting to go away. I stopped for 2 more times to re-charge and finally, with the ending within sight, I drew out all my energy to dash past the finishing line. It was slighly over half an hour, not a bad time for an old man like me. The only one finished ahead of me in my team was Paul, he was waiting for him at the finishing line and not long later followed by Chua and the rest of the pack. Admittedly, this run was by far the toughest and longest this year despite all the training, mostly on the treadmills. I reckon, I still have to work hard on my stamina. This serves as a litmus test to my ultimate challenge for year 2008, the 10km Stanchart run in December and 55 mins, though daunting remains my target.

All friends, wish me luck.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Jogging @ Bedok Reservior (勿洛蓄水池)

This message is specially written for New Century's staff.

Located in the eastern part of Singapore, the shoreline of Bedok Reservoir (indicated in red marking, our running route) is 4.3km which has an average depth of 9 m. It is a man-made reservoir completed in year 1986 in Bedok New Town then. This reservoir has indeed come a long way since; in recent years we have had witnessed a series of international water sporting events initiated by Singapore Sports Council.

One of the popular jogging venues around, come 31 Oct, Friday it will be our company's health activity for the month. A fast & fit runner can cover the 4.3 km well under 20 mins but an average one can easily complete one round within half an hour, with minutes to spare even. If running is too daunting for some, fret not...for leisure walking around the reservoir can still be covered in an hour. Whatever activity one may choose, there's always something for everyone.

Those who have signed up for the year end Stanchart Marathon but have yet commenced any form of training due to busy schedule, you can well consider taking one bold step forward. Remember, the key to confidence building is finishing the race, never mind how much it takes to complete. Nothing is too daunting as long as one's mind is set to finish the task ahead.

Hope to see active participations in this activity!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Tribute to JBJ

The sudden demise of Joshua Benjamin Jeyaratnam, better known by many as JBJ has saddened me somewhat. He was a truly opposition member in every sense, a never-say-die fighter to the end. He lost in as many court rulings, bankrupted & discharged and bankrupted again & finally discharged but he had never wavered during these trying periods. I missed seeing him sparring verbally in the wake of much stronger opponents in Parliament, a lone voice but fiesty he certainly was.

I remember vividly, despite his advanced age, he was always seen standing outside the entrance of Centrepoint selling his books to the walking public assisted by his only ardent supporter, Ng Teck Siong who is the Chairman of newly formed Singapore Reform. A sorry sight, to say the least.

He formed Singapore Reform in the hope to put forth his voice in parliament one day but with his passing away, I do not think anyone in the opposition ward could fill the big shoes he had left behind.

While he may not have created much of an impact in Singapore's short political history and many younger Singaporeans may not have heard or remembered him, nonetheless, he was the true son of Singapore who had held his beliefs into his twilight years.

Rest in peace, JBJ!