Tuesday, December 30, 2008
I'd like to dedicate this blog to the theme of "Our First Christmas". This holiday included many firsts and each one threw us for a loop. However, we surprise even ourselves at how well we can handle this now. So I go down the list...
Our first Christmas as a married couple: This one was probably the biggest adjustment. Coming from two families that have very distinct Christmas traditions, we were both hell bent on doing things our own way. Ya see, Aaron's family does their Christmas fun on Christmas Eve. My family does EVERYTHING (minus church, Grandma's house and the McDonnell's house) on Christmas Day. So I had to remind Aaron that it was against the very core of my Christmas-loving soul to open anything before Christmas morning. Keeping his hands off the wrapped gifts was a daily task. He even sunk so low as to say "Well, we can open it now and then rewrap it and open it again on Christmas morning on the Skype and then our family would never know we opened it early." To this I replied, "But God would know Aaron, and he'd be very disappointed in you." That shut him up until the next day.
So when Christmas morning got here, you'd better believe Aaron was up at 7am (we didn't get home from the previous night's festivities and to bed until 3am). But he was too excited. I was less than thrilled to be woken up at that hour, but thought it was sweet that he was that excited to play Santa. He'd also made our breakfast and a big pot of coffee (a.k.a. Megan niceness juice).
It was a perfect Christmas morning for just the two of us. It made me feel very lucky to have a husband that would make Christmas feel this special even if it's just the two of us. Our children are going to have a wonderful father. (Just hopefully not in Singapore.)
Our first Christmas in Singapore: Singapore goes crazy for Christmas. They decorate every inch of the city and every establishment has a Christmas tree. They don't give a hoot about political correctness either. Everyone is saying "Merry Christmas" everywhere you go. Being a Christian, I loved it. I liked not having to dilute the meaning of the holiday with "Season's Greetings" or "Happy Holidays".
Christmas is also the only time of year that the stores are open past 9pm. In Singapore, most stores are only open from 11am to 9pm. It was really hard to get used to at first (actually it's still a pain at times). However, a lot of stores stayed open until 11pm during the month of December. Even though we don't do much shopping here. It was nice to have the option. Shopping in Singapore is very expensive and very crowded. It's a tourist city afterall.
Our first Christmas away from family: I was seriously dreading this aspect of our first Christmas. Aaron had already spent a Christmas away from home, but this was going to be my first one. Much like Aaron's family, my family is extremely close. Before I left, I spoke to my sister daily on the phone. My mom also called everyday, even when I lived at home before the wedding. I talked to everyone else at least once or more a week. So the thought of spending the most important holiday of the year away from them made me very sad. However, thanks to a little invention called Skype we were able to spend Christmas with both Aaron's and my family. We did Christmas Eve (our Christmas morning) with the Spreers and then spent Christmas morning (our Christmas evening) with my parents (in fact, we joked that we were the only kids to show up for Christmas breakfast at my parents house.) It was almost as good as really being there. Everyone else that we didn't get to see, called us in the spaces in between.
So all in all, it wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be. In fact, it was kinda great.
Don't get me wrong though, I'd still have rather spent it in Kansas.
Sunday, December 21, 2008
I was just wondering when you were coming cuz I've been carrying my stocking around for a while now. There's still nothing in it.
I don't really know when Christmas is, but it seems like it should be here by now. If you wanna come early, that'd be cool. I might have accidentally chewed up all of my good toys. I think I smelled some new ones under the tree, but I'm not allowed to open those until my Mom says I can.
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Merry Christmas Singapore - Culture Vulture
Singapore has recorded its own Christmas song. Since I'm striving to be less critical and keep the blog upbeat, I'll let you form your own opinion. However, just imagine sitting in an office and being forced to listen to it everyday. EVERYDAY.
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
We started out the night at a restaurant called Paulaner. It's owned by the same German company that makes Paulaner beers. I had the weiner schnitzel. Aaron was mildly intimidated. (just kidding)
Then they had us get on stage and play a song game which entailed feeling each other up. (Again, probably something that wouldn't have been so appealing with a sober mindset.)
and then they handed Faby and me a tamborine. You can't say no to a tamborine! So we went back on stage, yet again.
It was a long night, but so so so much fun. I hope we can go back soon. A couple of the musicians are American and their sense of humor is right up our alley.
So even though I miss my family and my bestest friends from home, it was a great birthday...followed by another long and wonderful day of Skype with everyone from home.
Monday, December 8, 2008
Singaporean version: "I forgot to clear my rubbish from the bin. Could you help there?"
How I must translate: "I forgot to take out my trash. Could you do it for me?"
Yes, their way sounds much prettier. However, I'm sticking to my American sass. It seems to be fewer words that way. I'll be posting more interesting ones as I remember them.
Sunday, December 7, 2008
In response to several questioning people about why I haven't blogged, this blog shall serve to tell you why.
So even though I was only hired at my new job to work part time, I have been thrust into full time status thanks to a pokey work pass approval system affecting my coworker. This would be no big deal back home in the States, but here in Singapore, it sucks. Especially without a car. Did I mention that in Singapore full time includes Saturdays? Yeah. Me no likey.
Check out a typical day:
6:30 Wake up and get ready for work
7:45 Walk to the bus stop located about 4 blocks of hot humidity away
7:55-8:00 Catch the bus
8:10 Get off the bus and walk underground to get across the busy street then up several escalators to get to the above ground MRT
8:12 Throw some elbows and run and shove into the empty train to be able to get a seat or face standing up in shoulder to shoulder sardine-ness for the whole ride, which is not cool in a country that doesn't value the use of deodorant
8:43 Get off the MRT at Douby Ghaut station, walk up several flights of stairs, walk a half a mile and down several flights of stairs to switch to the other MRT train
8:49 Take the other train to the next stop which is directly under my office building
8:56 Walk up several flights of stairs and down several hallways and into the office tower section of the mall I work in
9:00 Finally make it up to the 16th floor and walk into my office hoping my day won't start with me getting screamed at (which is usually the case)
6:00-7:35 Repeat the same travel routine in the reverse
So yeah, when I get home, I'm dead tired. We have just enough time to cook dinner, eat it, take care of poor neglected Guinness, sit for 1 hour and then go to bed. It pretty much sucks. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy the extra money and having something to do everyday...it's just a bit much. Be careful what you wish for, I guess.