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A Good Day to Explore

there is always something new to discover

Welcome to My Adventure!

In February 2017, I moved from Dallas, TX to Singapore. My first intercontinental move ever. I’ve lived away from home for ten years now, but never so far. Over the years I’ve tried to share what my life out in the world outside of my hometown is like, but with different people on different platforms (Facebook, Instagram, e-mail, phone, or none of the above) it gets hard to share the full experience with everyone. I share pictures and tid-bits here and there, but I want a way to share more about my journey, my experiences, my learnings, and my joys.

I titled this blog “A Good Day to Explore” because I truly believe every day brings us something new to discover. You can be at home reading, exploring your neighbourhood, taking a road trip, or flying around the world seeing new sites and learning about new cultures. Life presents us so many opportunities to learn about ourselves, others, and the world around us. We have the chance to try new things every day. While not every day may be exciting or adventurous (I know, sometimes you just need to binge watch a show or get chores done), but I believe every day can be fulfilling and brings meaning to life as long as you are open to it.

I’m aiming for weekly updates where I will share stories of day to day life in Singapore, travel stories, events I attend, things I love, and challenges I face. If you’re ever curious about something, please ask! It could make a great post or learning opportunity!

Carpe Diem.

LC

Featured post

Home at 110 Meters High 

Solo, Chip Lift, Hook Kick, Block Down

A refreshing 30 degree Celsius day to get our sweat on.

I woke up well rested and ready to take on my Sunday, with a slight thread of worry and anxiety flowing through me… I had committed to trying a new sport: Gaelic Football. The Irish girl who has been too kind as to show me around/invite me to things asked if I’d like to join her (for her first time as well) in an effort to meet people. I know attention spans are short so I’ll link to an explanation of the sport at the end of this post. If you haven’t heard of it before, think of it as a combination between Volleyball, Rugby, and Soccer.

Being a Soccer player and showing up to a field based game sans cleats felt embarrassing (they’re in a box in Texas). But, I could tell there were several other lads there who were new and in the same shoe situation as me, and we survived. Yes, I did just say “lads” as they kept on saying “alright lads let’s get out there” … assuming this comes from ladies? I have a lot of learning to do about the Irish slang.

The practice started at 10:00 AM with warm-ups and drills. At least I know how to do high knees and lunges. The ball rolling and high passing? Not so much, but I think I caught on alright. Then it was on to a passing drill where I learned how to hand pass (cue: Volleyball skills). Last, it was a couple of 9 vs. 9 matches on a full sized Soccer field. Talk about learning you’re out of shape at the wrong time.

All in all, I invested two hours of my Sunday to something that from the outside looked intimidating, and in reality was a blast! The group of about 40 women was so welcoming of a rookie Canadian player and offered tips and pointers the whole time. The practice was followed by lunch with at least half of them at one of the Irish pubs on the Island.

Side note: Over lunch, I also learned that cheese and onion crisps (chips) were invented in Ireland. Yum!

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Chips provided by a newly established Irish food vendor on the island. Couldn’t go without having the “local” cider to cool off, too!

Most of our friends at the office were skeptical of our desire to play, but I think we held our own (and it helps that it is a fun league, not too intense!). We didn’t get sunburnt, pass out, or get heatstroke. We got a great workout in, met some lovely people, and picked up a new skill (sort of…might need to attend a few more practices).

Here’s to always saying yes to trying new things and meeting new people, even when you are afraid to embarrass yourself in front of them.

Slainte, and Carpe Diem.

LC

PS: For those who are interested, here is a  quick overview of Gaelic Football. Link found and provided by Ryley. 

My First Visit to Singa – Nov. 2016

Getting Around Town

The infrastructure and transit system here is fantastic. My main way to get around is on the MRT. It usually costs a dollar or less to go one way (and is free if you get off before 7:30AM). Cabs and Uber are also a great option – very affordable and easy to get. However, if it’s raining, plan on waiting at least 5-10 minutes for one because everyone else is thinking the same thing as you!

One thing I need to remember: no eating or drinking in the station or on the train (you can be fined if you do). This is probably why it’s so clean! The stations are spotless and have no smell which is just another benefit to how they run their public transportation.

(scroll over the picture or click for more information)

The Office

I have yet to figure out who the Dwight and Michael of the office would be, but I can tell you we have some awesome people. The office is about 25 strong, much smaller than the few hundred I’m used to. It’s a combination of local Singaporeans and expats from all over. Many people travel for their roles so it can feel quiet at times, but it’s always got a positive vibe.

We’re on the 36th floor, and the view is amazing. I’m all set in my individual office, but I’m sure more flare will be coming soon.

Typical CBD business hours are usually 9AM-6PM. We’re lucky to have a more flexible schedule where people come in anywhere between 7-10AM and leave as late as they need to (all within reason of course).

Lunches are typically taken outside of the office…something I’m going to have to get used to. Buying lunch out is easy. It’s less than a 5-minute walk to multiple indoor and outdoor food courts, and if you choose the right place it’s relatively affordable. I’m looking forward to giving myself a bit more of a break during the day.

The lunch breaks give me a nice break from the chill AC, too. Due to the heat outdoors, they pump the AC (they say “air con”) nice and strong inside buildings, which makes sweaters, shawls, or other layers a necessity. Good thing I shipped my warm stuff from Texas!

We have a lovely office worker named Peggy who helps with cleaning, maintaining the kitchen, making tea, and just generally bringing a smile to our faces. She stocks the kitchen with drinks, little snacks, and always makes sure you’ve eaten lunch. Always nice to have someone looking out for you 🙂

Carepe Diem.

LC

Fun Fact – Time Zones

Time travel is real. I’m anywhere between 13 to 16 hours AHEAD of my friends in North America. This means I’m waking up at the end of their day (and it’s the next day for me), and they are waking up when I am ending mine.

For example…
Singa: 12:51 PM on Sunday, Feb. 12th
Dallas: 10:51 PM on Saturday Feb 11th

My First Week in Singa

First thing’s first. We call it “Singa” (like San Francisco is called SF, not San Fran).

Thursday, Feb 2nd: Arrived at 2 AM, got to my temp housing, unpacked and went to bed. I got up at 7 AM to go for a run and capitalize on free breakfast. I went into the office to unpack all of my boxes and catch up with  few people over coffee. I decided to go shopping for a few essentials and have an easy night on my own.

Friday, Feb 3rd: Apartment viewings! Twelve to be exact. My gut, head, and heart fell in love with apartment number two, which I am still in the process of trying to lock down (send good vibes/wishes and hope I get it so that if you visit, you can experience the amazing 36th floor view).

Over lunch, I joined the Singa office team for a traditional Chinese New Year holiday lunch with some of the Singa office team. We kicked things off with the Prosperity Toss (Yusheng) – fun, messy, and delicious. Two days in and I’d tried my most exotic and expensive dish to date….Bird’s Nest. It was actually very similar to a chicken noodle soup (the local team told us to go ahead and enjoy the dish and they would tell us what it was once we finished (and yes…I’ve never felt so western assuming the dish was a version of chicken noodle soup)).  Make sure you click that link if you don’t know what it is.

The day was capped by happy hour with some other SYK expats. So nice to have friendly faces to welcome me here on only day one and two.

I think by this time I finally recovered from the jet lag and pure shock of moving my life across an ocean.

The Weekend: I spent the weekend with two lovely expats from Ireland (via Australia), one of whom works at SYK. Spent time looking at a few more apartments, drinking wine, and continuing to shop (needed some new runners, food, and sparkly shoes, of course).

First week in the Office: On Monday, Feb 6th, I celebrated my six year “stryker-versary”. What a time and place to be after six years with an amazing company and team.

Thanks to setting up my office the prior week, I was able to dive right in to meeting with a few people, reading, catching up on e-mails, and setting out my proposed plan for the year. Everyone has been very welcoming and I’m excited for the years to come here!

 

 

 

What Am I… A Hipster? A Blogger?

The future only knows. Safe to say neither. I may never get serious enough about all things blogging or hipster… but I like pretty things and I like sharing pretty things with others. Like this picture. I decided to invest in a decent camera, the Sony Alpha 6300 so that I could capture my new discoveries and moments with better quality to enjoy over time (ironic that this was taken with my iPhone?).

I may begin to take pictures of more food in public, things, people, places, then sit at a coffee shop and write/post about them. But, I can use the excuse that I need to share with my family, right? I hope you enjoy what I share. xo #nojudgies

Wise Words

“Our Dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them” – Walt Disney

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