Thursday, March 31, 2011

Jet lag 4.45 am

I wonder if there is any evidence to show that when one travels West the jet lag is worse. Whenever I go East, I appear to respond well to the time difference. Anytime I go West, my inner body clock gets all mixed up.

So here I sit at 4.45 am....not that I have woken up at this time...but I simply never fell asleep. There were no naps taken yesterday which could account for this failure to sleep. There was no caffeinated drinks which would hinder said sleep. Despite remaining awake all day, I still seem unable to sleep at a proper time.

4.48 am and I'm still sitting here typing. I think I will crawl back into bed and see if I can't at least sleep for an hour or so before I have to get up and tackle my day. The rain might put me to sleep. My husband's snores could lull me to sleep...or not...at least I should try to sleep.

When I crawl into bed, I will count all the times I have struggled with jet lag over the years. Maybe the counting of these memories will put me to sleep....like the proverbial sheep.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Pneumonia Saga

Not sure how I got it....never wanted it in the first place...but there it was...Pneumonia! At first I thought I had a common cold- or the flu- but as days went by, I realized this was something far more serious. 

Thankfully, Deanna's niece is a competent doctor at Raffles Hospital. She really out did herself in taking care of me. The Pneumonia was discovered quickly and heavy duty antibiotics prescribed. It took a few days for things to kick in, but thankfully I was ready to fly out of Singapore by Tuesday.

Now I know how it feels to suffocate...breathe and not feel as if you are getting enough oxygen. It does not feel pleasant at all. I thank God for good medical care, great family and friends and of course His divine healing! Even the doctor was shocked to see how I had improved when I went in to see her for my follow up consultation. Aside from a nasty bit of Bronchitis type thing attempting to piggy back the tail end of the pneumonia, I was better....weak, but better!!


Now I am back with my darling husband. I am happy to be improving. The saga is almost over.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Mohammed Mustafa

If you want to get anything worth getting you can find it at Mohammed Mustafa. This store is massive. The only problem is there are always crowds of people. It is actually amazing to think this huge store came from such humble beginnings.

Haj Mohammed Mustafa started out selling simple food from a moving cart. His son, Ahmad, joined him and started selling other things besides food. Haj Mohammed Mustafa was so impressed by his son's business sense, he decided to branch out into selling clothing. The business continued to expand. Ahmad continued his father's business and went on to open a small store selling clothing. Over the years the store has expanded into the giant super store it is today!*

Super stores are great for finding whatever you need, but they are horrible for the crowds they attract. A few years ago, the store decided to go to a 24 hour time table. Normally I would go to the store at 3 am because I know this is when the least amount of people would be there. Last night, Cassandra and I decided to go shopping at 10.45 pm. We were sure everyone would be done shopping and we could have the store to ourselves. Nothing could be further from the truth!

The streets in front of Mohammed Mustafa were jammed with people. Driving in and out of all the crowds was enough to drive me crazy and I hadn't even gone into the store to shop. Once I found a place to park, Cassandra and I dashed into the store only to be greeted by another wall of people. Thankfully we had our lists in hand, otherwise I think the vast amount of people would have made me forget everything I had gone to buy.


People jostled up and down the aisles. Pushing and shoving appeared to be the way to go if you wanted to acquire anything in the store. After about an hour, we made it up to the cashier and paid for our goods. The crowds had not diminished, in fact, they had increased. Popping out into the street, we managed to get back into the car and drive away. Amazingly, we did not hit any of the people meandering down the middle of the road. 


Although I used to love going to Mohammed Mustafa in my younger years, I think I'm not so impressed with the crowds anymore. If I have to go back, I will definitely do a 3 am run in hopes of missing the herds of people.


*information in this portion of my blog update was gleaned from
Singapore pages.

Friday, March 18, 2011

A Special Treat

Sneha and myself at Bugis Junction, Singapore
It is a special treat to meet someone who you have been wanting to meet for awhile. Sneha is such a special young woman. I came to know her via her blog- now she blogs about travelShe loves art, loves life and is ready for any adventure thrown her way. It was indeed special for me to be able to meet up with her in Singapore, of all places!

We sat and chatted, as if we had known each other for years. We explored topic upon topic. We laughed. We talked more. The time flew and before we knew it we were both delayed from our next appointment. 

What were the odds of us both being in Singapore at the same time?! Incredible! We meet via blogspot and following each others' blogs - I from Africa and the US and she from India. Now we meet up in Singapore where I have come back for a short visit and she is here for a six month stay with her husband.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

A Cup of Tea

I'm a firm believer in a cup of tea being a great help in any situation. 

"Your boyfriend dumped you?  Here have this cup of tea!"

"Oh, now now...you'll pass the next exam...sip your tea... it will make you feel better."

"What do you mean you are getting married?!! Hold on, I'm going to put on a pot of tea and you will tell me all about it!"



You get the idea. Good times or bad times, tea should always be a part of it. There is just something so reassuring about sipping a hot cup of tea....lots of milk and sugar helps too.



It was for this very reason my daughter and I ventured out to sit down for a delicious "high tea"....as she said, "Mom, we NEED this!"

So with the help of a great blog we were able to locate a tea place on Orchard Road. Of course, by the time we had driven through traffic, made wrong turns and went around robin hood's barn, we were more than ready for the tea. The Cova proved to be all the blogger had said it would be and more.

Wrong Way

What was I thinking when I decided to drive so soon after arriving? My head was still muddled from the trip and although I tried to remember to stay on the proper side of the road...I ended up turning into the wrong lane. It wasn't until I saw a car heading straight for me that I realized my horrible mistake.

In my attempt to put the car into reverse, my hand accidentally hit the horn. The fellow in front of me must have thought I was blowing the horn at him and it made him mad. As I reversed, he sped up and drove nose to nose with my car. Thankfully I've always done well at backing up, so I was able to swing into a side street. The man stopped his car and stared at me as if I purposely wanted to drive down the wrong side of the road. After what he must have thought was an appropriate amount of staring at me, he revved his engine and sped off.
The whole incident shook me up. How could I have turned into the wrong lane when I kept reminding myself to keep to the proper lane? My brain has gotten used to driving in the US and so although I told myself to switch sides, my brain automatically went to the side it was used to. 

As the day progressed and I drove hither and yon, I realized I no longer needed to think of which lane to be in. It became easier and easier to turn into the correct lane. How fast my brain adjusted to the new rules. 

I pondered on the need for adjustment to new rules. Often we are so programmed with a thought or idea, we simply just keep going down the same groove. Even when a new way or truth is shown to us we insist on going the old way. Often it takes a head on collision to wake us up and make us realize we are heading down the wrong path. When we do figure out the correct direction and continue in it- our thinking changes. 

We have to think about the changes but it is not enough to just think of them. We have to actually start doing things differently. The more we do the right thing our thinking solidifies with the new process. 

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Narita- March 15 2011

The normal hustle and bustle of the Narita airport was conspicuously missing. It might have been the lull before the storm. I've read in today's paper that the Narita airport is crowded with people attempting to leave due to the last eruption at a power plant. I must have flown through just as things were dying down from the earthquake and right before they went crazy with the mass exodus.

Now I sit safely in Singapore. How safe is safe? Can we ever be truly assured we are going to stay safe? I watch as people spend money like it is growing on trees. I over hear conversations of ideas for getting more money. I see a bubble ready to burst as it has in so many other countries. Unfortunately, no one will ever believe it can burst until it finally does. Once it has burst there will be those who sit around saying, "I can't believe that just happened." 

Whether it is a financial earthquake or a physical earthquake...a mental hurricane or a physical hurricane...an emotional tsunami or a physical tsunami...they will strike one day....when you least expect. The key is to be prepared. The key is to have back up plans and back up plans for those back up plans...and then parachutes on top of those. However, with all those plans and preparations, there is still no guarantee of survival. The only real hope is found in God. He doesn't promise we won't go through the difficulties, but He does promise to be there with us and never leave us nor forsake us. He alone is our hope!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

8.9

The news hit and sent me reeling, an 8.9 earthquake shook Japan. The aftermath of a tsunami is unbelievable. So many people who woke up one day thinking their life would be the same as it was the day before, and with one big shake and one big wave things changed. 

My heart goes out to everyone who has lost loved ones. All my friends in Japan are now struggling with a lack of gas, electricity and even running low on water. How helpless I feel being so far away. I keep praying...and praying...and praying. 

The Japanese are a resilient people. I know they will get through this tragedy; however, my heart breaks for the devastation and the loss they have endured. I will continue to pray.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Kailynn Josephine Ong's first Birthday Poem

When my children were growing up, I attempted to write poems for them occasionally- at birthdays, at graduations, at special occasions. They were sporadically written- not very eloquent- but they held my love for them. Now I have a granddaughter....and I hope I have more grandchildren to follow...I want to make it a tradition that I write each of them a poem on their birthdays.

 So now it begins, with Baby Kailynn turning ONE!!! WOW! Where did the time go??


One day, God decided to make
A special little girl
He tossed in some red hair
Added a little curl

God mixed together some laughter
Gave her a cute little nose,
Adorable fingers and
Adorably, sweet toes

God sprinkled smiles on her
Dusting her with love
He wrapped her tightly
Delivering her from above

God gave her a special mom and dad
They hugged her oh so tight
They rocked her to sleep
Each and every night

God, thank you for baby, Kailynn
Now, this is what I pray
Keep your eyes on her
Every single day

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Marching forward

The clock keeps ticking...the seasons keep changing...life keeps going on. Sadness comes wafting past, brushing my shoulder, I keep going forward. Uncertainty threatens to trip me up and yet my feet continue to march onward.

Hurdles stand, one by one, in an attempt to slow me down. Death, sickness, grief, burdens, and troubles loom ahead. I approach them with a steady stride. One leg thrust forward, I am able to leap over each hurdle. If not over, I can always squeeze under or if worse comes to worse I will just push the hurdle down. Nothing must stop me from marching forward.

It is not how I started this race, but how I will finish it which counts. Lord, I want to lay aside every encumbrance which would so easily keep me from finishing the course. I run not for myself, but for You. I leap, not with my own strength, but with Your strength! I will finish this race because You are the author and the finisher of my faith. I will march onward.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Memoirs

My favorite books are biographies or autobiographies. There is much to learn by reading of another person's life. I am often challenged to do more after I finish reading a book about someone's accomplishments. I'm sometimes reminded to be careful of my failings, when I read of someone's failings. Whether good or bad, I am able to learn something.

Yesterday, Millie Redding handed me the manuscript of her memoirs. It will be published soon and she wanted me to read over it in case there might be any suggestions. With appointments looming ahead of me, I figured I would not get to the manuscript for days. 

In the evening, my final appointment was rescheduled and I sat back in my chair feeling the excitement of having two extra hours free. My eye caught sight of the manuscript and I knew what I would be doing for the next couple hours. The words on the pages transported me to countries around the world. 

This was a story which inspired me to want to do more. It was a story which encouraged me to never give up. It was a magnificent story.

I wish more people would record their life's journey.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Snores and more

Snores drift across the room and I feel at peace. My world is back to 'normal' or as normal as it can get. Hubby is nestled in his side of the bed and I sit here getting ready to head to my side of the bed.

Both my sisters are gone. My friend from Japan and her husband and daughter and son are gone. The house is unusually quiet...except for the snores. 

The calendar in front of me taunts me with its little boxes.  Each date calls out, "We are filling up fast with all sorts of appointments and schedules and things to do" 
"Hurry, carve out some time or else there will be none left for you" "August and October will be here before you know it and both your darling daughters will be married"
I simply sigh. My foot bumps the box at my feet. I will not open it tonight. It is stuffed full of the 'nitty gritty' things I have pushed aside while my sisters were here. I will attend to those things tomorrow, in between all the scribbled appointments on my calendar.  It is too much to think of tonight.


For now I will listen to the snores and mumbled what dear Scarlett said. "I can't think about that right now. If I do, I'll go crazy. I'll think about that tomorrow."