Garfieldhug's Blog

This & That Including What Ails

Some Things Cannot Be Bought

Today I learnt that Scorpion’s sister whom I worked with before has reported to the heavenly realm.

During my employment many years back, I urged her to seek medical treatment when she had an ovarian cyst.

During surgery to remove this benign cyst, the gynae friend of mine saw this large ugly mass in her appendix and recognised it to be a cancerous tumor.

He immediately removed it and this was where her troubles began.

Gynae surgeon told me that she was arrogant and not only did she not thank him for early discovery (*she lived a period of 5 years till her passing last evening) she challenged him on his diagnosis and he had to redo the biopsy test in 2 different hospitals and blamed him for the discovery.

As I walked her through her cancer journey to seek medical attention and find good oncologists for her etc, she nor Scorpion even bothered to thank me.

I did not bother until the evil Scorpion started ill treating staff and starting going into a cult worshipping of a living man – Indian man.

Whilst I am sympathetic at his loss, I felt this was something Scorpion had to learn. 

He and his sibling were arrogant Porsche drivers.

They turned their noses up against people and used people.

This reminds me that no amount of wealth can buy us health, wealth and happiness.

Many things money cannot buy.

To name more…

Laughter…hmm unless you buy a comedy club or own a stand up comedian

Trust

Friendships

Heartfelt sympathy

Empathy

Loads more….

May Scorpion be enlightened and learn that life is not about how much you have in wealth but people around you and how we treat people.

This may be his second chance.

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Chinese New Year – Day 3Β 

My ex colleagues, both of whom are accomplished chefs sent me the above and below greetings on Day 3 of CNY.

Both images herald the 3rd day of CNY and most people reopen for business on this auspicious day.

Day 1 is reserved for families to visit each other i.e. eldest anticipate siblings and parents expect children to return with grandchildren.

Day 2 is for visiting close relatives and return visits of seniors to younger relatives.

I have been enjoying a relaxing time these 2 days with my parents, keeping them company and taking time to bring them out for something different in food choices! Junk food!

So far we have had Popeyes, Kentucky Fried Chicken, McDonalds and last night was at Burger King!

For ordering a prosperity meal at McDonald’s, I was given a cutesy designed hong bao wrapper ie red packets to slot money in for married ones to give singletons.

Ms Xena Warrior was talking about this and I am sure she wanted this. So, I will save this for her.

On CNY eve I received a Garfield new borne from a friend who hails from China.

I am always happy to receive a Garfield and he quickly settles in comfortably on my sofa.

As with every “birth” – animate or inanimate comes “death”

On eve of CNY morning, I saw a wake at the void deck of my parents’ flat.

My heart missed a beat as to have a death in the family is always hard but even more painful when it is the auspicious lunar new year.

Many will avoid attending wakes and paying last respects as it is not auspicious.

To whoever who passed, it will be indeed a quiet wake for the decedent’s family.

When I went up to my parents unit, they were visibly saddened as the person who passed was their valued neighbor and friend. We called her Aunty Yahoe.

She had a loud shrill voice and would always announce her arrival at my parents’ flat with voice first.

I remember when my mum had heart stents, she cooked for my mum.

Life is numbered with mortality.

As we celebrate a new year, I am reminded of mortality.

We are not immortals.

Aunty Yahoe aged 68 years old passed peacefully in her sleep. Mum who visited her after she had immediately passed at their home said that Aunty Yahoe was serene and peaceful.

I bumped into the undertakers whilst riding the lift up to collect her.

A heartfelt reminder for me as I start the new year.

With happiness, will come sadness.

With life, will come death.

With sadness, will come joy.

With good deeds, will come blessings.

Do no evil is my take. 

Help where can and when needed.

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Wednesday Reality Check

Picture this….

A Singaporean Chinese family sits at dinner table. Young son aged 9 years old is playing games on his handheld device.

Mum serves him a nice portion of fish.

“Eeee fish again! I don’t want to eat fish”

“It is okay son, eat other dishes” says father immediately.

Scene 2

An Indian family sits at dinner table. This is a family comprising a couple in their 60s and with son and his wife.

Plenty of food is available on the table.

Mother eats a piece of fish and says, “fish is not fresh daughter” and frowns with an annoyed look.

Scene 3

An aged couple. A toothless lady and her husband eating dinner under spartan conditions. 

Husband serves her one of 2 pieces of canned sardine. 

She grins happily and tucks in to her dinner of plain white rice and a piece of sardine.

The story ends.

This is a production of an effort of the government agency to remind us to count our blessings.

I cried. 😒

I went to the supermarket and bought a tin of Ayam Brand Sardines.

I ate that with plain rice and it tasted delicious😊

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Ghost Festival Starts Today….

δΈƒζœˆ or pronounced as “qi yue” in Mandarin is the 7th month of the Chinese Lunar Calendar signifying the start of Ghost Festival.

Chinese believe that during this month the gates of hades are opened for the spooks to roam the Earth and visit friends and relatives.

This is the start of their 30 days of freedom.

Relatives of the spooks will be busy this month offering money, gold ingots in paper marche form.

Clothes, cosmetics and branded items are made of paper and burnt as offerings for the spooks.

Food is pivotal in death. Foodie nation remember and a hungry ghost is an unhappy ghost 😁

So, roast pigs, chickens, ducks or favorite dishes or foods of the spooks are cooked and offered.

After that, the living will eat and enjoy.

Joss sticks and candles are offered and wowee the number of zeroes in hell notes is larger than what an bank or government can print!

It comes in US currency too!!

Companies or businesses who believe in this practice will also do offerings and invite staff to buy goodie bags ie pre packed with daily essentials like cooking oil, salt, rice and canned foods to offer and take home.

There are also auctions held to herald in good luck and prosperity to whoever that successfully bids for an object.

The object is usually not valuable eg charcoal in a container and bidders can pay as much as $50,000 to get it.

Charcoal is black gold and you guessed it…wealth for the business and home.

It is also taboo during this month to do renovations or move house as it annoys the spook. 

Noise or inability to find living relatives is the reason.

So….happy spooks celebration and may spooks happily reunite for a month’s holiday with their loved ones.

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Strength……From Charlie Brown & Snoopy

Charles Schulz and his creative team must be applauded for this heartfelt conversation between Charlie Brown and Snoopy.

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Bird sent me this as her family is at the throes of deciding prolonging treatment of chemo and radiotherapy for her father at stage 4 terminal lung cancer.

There is always the possibility of succumbing to the treatment instead of dying from cancer itself.

It is difficult when there are relatives.

She has to deal with both paternal and maternal side arguments.

I told her to stay out of it as her mum is much alive and as his wife, she has to decide.

Her family has decided to insulate her father from knowing about his condition.

But her father, I am sure is an intelligent man, and will know from the treatment he receives.

There is no best way to die really….her father’s mother (Bird’s grandmother) is still alive at almost 90 years old…- genetically her father might beat the odds!

Tough decisions for Bird and all I can do is encourage her from afar.

Stay strong Bird…..like what Charlie Brown and Snoopy says …we all gotta die someday but other days we will not.

Blessings and a speedy recovery is wished for your father. A miracle if you will from above!!

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Tribute To Late Kwek Leng Joo

I do not personally know the late Mr Kwek Leng Joo.

But I do know of his philantrophic work, his love for photography and his belief in a greener business model in our little red dot.

The late Mr Kwek passed away in his sleep Monday at a relatively young age of 62 years, considering today’s ageism and people living longer.

I learnt from the press reviews that he was instrumental in the application for our Botanical Gardens to be awarded World Heritage status by UNESCO.

He also donated to the families of inmates and other charitable causes.

He and his brother are hoteliers, property magnates and great business men.

Small wonder that he is listed on Forbes list but not snooty, instead down to earth.

Our Prime Minister Lee credited him for his contribution of photos that supported the application for UNESCO heritage status.

I met his nephew once. Young lad who was starting out in the business of this family of tycoons.

He was very different from the established, cool and dignified stature of the late Mr Kwek Leng Joo. Youth will catch up with maturity of thought and am sure he will helm the business in the future

I am sure his family is deeply shaken by his sudden passing.

Singapore has lost a kind hearted and giving son. His absence is sorely felt by the community at large.

For those whose lives he has touched, they will remember him.

Rest in peace Mr Kwek Leng Joo and bless our little red dot with all things good!

P.s. Say hello to our late Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew up above. With you there and the pioneer leaders…we will expect “changes” up above πŸ˜‰

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Singapore, Lion City & Orchids Galore

Our botanical gardens has been awarded UNESCO HERITAGE status!!

Chicken and her family were at the Orchid Garden today and took the following photos to share with me and my dear readers.

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Aranda Lee Kuan Yew Named After Our Founding Father

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Below is our national flower, Vanda Miss Joachim Orchid.

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Definitely Not An Orchid LOL!

Gorgeous orchids aren’t they? πŸ˜€

*All photos are copy righted by Chicken and I thank her for sharing with me and in turn sharing with fellow readers

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My SG 50 Fun Pack – A Freebie!

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My SG Fun Pack

Today was the day I collected my SG 50 fun pack distributed free to all households.

A major experience for people to pack items into more than 1 million fun packs, comprising tote bag with a choice of 12 designs, antiquated haw flakes, 1 stick chupa chup lollipop, plastic skewer sticks for fruits, a pkt each if 3 in 1 cereal oat drink, instant coffee, $2 off coupon for laundry wash, a state flag standee, 2 pieces of erasers and a miniature of a merlion.

What I found interesting was a postcard with the proclamation of my little red dot’s independence from then Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew in 1965 on 9th August when Singapore became an independent and sovereign state.

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The Preamble To Proclamation Of Independence

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The Proclamation Of Independence

I marvelled at the committment of staff to do this major ‘census’ taking, keying in all our personal details including and not limited to cell phone and email addresses.

1 million households….as I lined up and watched the going around scenes, I realised this is tough work as who would want to work under a hot tent keying in data and giving out fun packs!

Yet these young folks did it with smiles. The least I could do was say, “thanks for working today” to make this happen πŸ™‚

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Singapore – Past, Present & Future

Sang Nila Utama founded ancient Singapura. He was from a lineage of descendants from Parameswara of the Majapahit empire.

Sir Stamford Raffles founded Singapore and turned it into a busy entreport trade hub.

Singapore became an important port for the British and grew from a sleepy fishing village to a port.

The late Mr Lee Kuan Yew founded modern Singapore.

We survived British colonialism, Japanese Occupation and SARs.

Confused yet?

I am sharing a simple overview of our little red dot’s history.

I stress on “simple” as the more detailed accurate accounts are best captured and written up by our historians.

To alot of us….pioneer generation, young generation, Mr Lee Kuan Yew is fondly our founding father of today’s modern Singapore.

He and his cabinet team of pioneers like Mr Rajaratnam, Mr Hon Sui Sen, Mr Eddie Barker, Mr Ong Pang Boon, Dr Toh Chin Chye and others built a strong resilient Singapore today.

Today we talk of who the “architects” of modern Singapore is and undoubtedly, the “chief architect” has to be Mr Lee Kuan Yew and his team.

As I read more of the accolades of the late Mr Lee, he was involved in everything of a Singapore that works.

Our Constitution, water works, gardening and greening of our little red dot, government infrastructure that is corrupt free, drug free, education and loads of other public policies.

Mr Lee Kuan Yew has left his footprint on everything I see today. Truly a remarkable man!

The massive Marina Barrage was his vision. The clean and scenic Singapore River is his too.

Chicken was sharing some weeks back that she felt Mr Lee Kuan Yew must have been a “deity” sent to help us.

We are both in awe of Mr Lee Kuan Yew like millions of others worldwide.

Mr Lee Kuan Yew has left big shoes for any one man to fill.

I agree as he must have “super powers” to have foresight in what he saw 60 years back to realise it in my current day and age. His helicopter view of future Singapore hinged on his drive for an even better and stronger Singapore.

He is brilliant and both Chicken and I often wish we could have some of his brilliance! LOL!!

Like many other Singaporeans, we all play a part in the future of my little red dot.

I will not be around in another 50 years to see how much further we have progressed.

Will we be the “smart nation” we want to be? Can we survive the changes in economic trends?

All I hope for is this little red dot to continue to thrive in Asia/worldwide and be as prosperous a nation that is both rich in wealth and culture with a peopling that has compassion for others. A friend of the world if you will πŸ™‚

Majullah Singapura!!

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Wishing All Happy Vesak Day

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May your life be continuously blessed with peace of heart and compassion always – Buddha blessings on this day of enlightenment!

Happy Vesak Day Folks πŸ™‚

May your day be less hotter than mine….from what I hear it is also very hot in Hong Kong as told by my brother to me.

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