"Jacqueline Koh
Plant your own garden and decorate your own soul, instead of waiting around for somebody to give you flowers"
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Sunday, November 27, 2011 || 7:25 AM

Currently playing: Wake up by The Ditty Boops

I’m currently on the plane, 1 hour before I land on sunny little Sg. To be honest, I’m a little afraid to go home. Afraid because I will have to see my grandmother in a degenerating state. The night before I left for Shanghai, I went to say goodbye to her. I could see from the way she spoke that she didn’t want me to leave. My grandmother is from China, she left her hometown for Singapore when she was little. She told me Shanghai is for successful people. She said the people there are rich. She told me to work hard and not get bullied. I laid on bed with her and took a picture so that I’ll have a picture to gaze at when I miss her. I know that things would be different when I knock onto the bronze metal gates today. I’d be looking at a pessimistic old lady, bounded in a wheelchair. A lady who shouldn’t be confined in any way, because independence and the ability to move around freely is very important to her ego, confidence and psychological health. I don’t know how to face that. I can tell you the exact scenario which would happen. I would look at her, tell her how much I miss her, tell her I think of her all the time and give her my biggest smile while putting my arms around her because human touch is always valued amongst older people. And then I would have to brace myself and put on the emotional armor simultaneously because I only have to accept things how are they because all of these are part and parcel of life.

To be honest, I’m so sick of sitting on planes. I love traveling so much that I can say it’s my passion. My soul reaches out to what the world on the other end has to offer. But, I’m so sick of the entire plane-sitting -to-get-to-another-destination process. The only comfort SIA gives me is the hot towels, and the free flow of Baileys (which I sadly, have to abstain from). Maybe 3 weeks later, I would be on my way to Philippines. But maybe I would choose not to because of some commitments.

Anyways, I thought it would be interesting to share how we live up to the ‘retail student’ name. The 5 girls came with a total of 10luggages and guess how many luggages we lugged back? About 25. No wonder we’re in a course which grooms mainly aspiring merchandise buyers. We’re au fait in shopping. We have no self control even though we constantly try to drill this quality which is out of reach amongst one another. Whenever we tell one person to stop shopping so much, it’s like giving ourselves a slap in the face. And yes, all of us got held up while checking in. We got fined really badly for our excess baggages too. Really, really really badly. We could have bought any 4 Aigner watches.

Goodbye Shanghai, and when I say goodbye to Shanghai, I’m also bidding farewell to the outrageously high spending power I have there, restaurants, cheap food, the comforting weather, going for massages at 11PM, hairwashes at 10PM, sleeping with Angel & Cheryl, living under the same roof with Sunran, Jieying, Angel and Cheryl, our messy apartment, getting judged whenever I wear slippers, speaking Chinese 95% of the time, daily cab rides, metro line 2&4 espicially, leatherwear, layering of clothes, scarves, Phebe, Taobao, the smell of flowers everywhere (maybe Shanghai should be known as a garden city as well), Xiao Jia, Shan Shan, Tang Yu, Yao Yun, Liu Gang, Xiao Pan, 85 degrees, Coco Bubbletea, and the free spirit I had when I was there, and so much more.

I thought a lot about what I want for my life in the future as well. And I think I came up with a conclusion. I’m already beginning to plot things out, and marking steps as I move ahead. The people around me in Shanghai made me think of how I could improve myself as a human being too (: