Personal Retreat 2016 begins! Day 1’s theme is WORK.

I suited up, grabbed my suitcase and off I went! Announced to the entire world that I’m going on this retreat through Facebook.

Many of my friends scolded me for working on my official leave and I’m really doing this in a big way! As how one of my friends puts it, “You wear a tie and shirt when you’re on leave?!”.

But hey! I always wanted to work in the Central Business District. The thought of working among the professionals excites me. I could really see myself dressing up for work everyday, grabbing the suitcase and trotting along the streets where the pulse of Singapore economy beats.

As an 18-year-old young man, I had my one and only 7-day experience as a dispatch boy with the Moscow Narodyn Bank. The 10-floor building no longer exists today, in its place a luxurious suite, that tall thin building on the left in the picture below.

Lau Pat Sat at the Central Business District. Brought back some memories of working here as a young man…

I’m very glad I came over to do this!

For one thing, I didn’t realise how productive I could be in a cafe with two cups of coffee. I set myself three groups of tasks to complete and I completed 95% of them. I wonder why can’t I be that productive in office. Truth being said, I guess it was the pressure of spending long hours in the cafe under the scrutiny of the waiters on duty, I got obliged to buy a second cup of Long Black after the Flat White for myself. Nevertheless, it has been a long time since I proved myself I can accomplish a task that I’ve assigned myself. Very small you may think, very important to me.

I am also thankful for the many friends who message me and said that they wanted to meet me. Of course, there is the preplanned lunch with my buddy, R, despite his busy schedule still squeeze a good 30 minutes to have a Mac with me. There’s also J who tried to arrange to meet me but time did not permit in the end. A fellow toastmaster, L, who we are planning a trip in the later stages of my retreat (stay-tuned). YW who tried to catch me for lunch and later coffee but alas, I was too engrossed with work. And there’s KX who met me for dinner.

Finally, the sheer coincidence that fate has given me to spend hours catching up with many other friends while waiting for dinner after work whom I just met coincidentally on the way. Just to let you understand how coincidental this was:

  • I was ready to leave for my 7.30pm dinner appointment at 5.30pm when I bump into G, another toastmaster friend who said that he had time to spent till 6.30pm. We walked and chatted about his research into Table Topics and human behaviour at great length.
  • So he left at 6.30pm and I hopped on the train, meeting my ex-colleague YC who was travelling in the same direction.It was a short catch up but a good one. He is one of those friends who you are not quite sure when will you be meeting again.
  • I dropped off the MRT station with close to 45 minutes to spare before my 7.30pm appointment, lo and behold, my student who was on internship was waiting for his friends as well and their dinner appointment was also at 7.30pm!

Really, what sort of coincidence is that?