Hello! We’re all feeling healthier and Dave has been recovering nobly from his operation. Even this morning he was talking about getting a run in soon. (I think he’s nuts; I can barely get past a slow lope in this heat). The Dengue is gone for each of us. The boys continue to show no signs of it but each of them does have mosquito bites. The incubation period can be up to 10 days post bite so you are always wondering. Dave and I are still both tired at the end of the day but otherwise are recovered. The only lasting impact is that we’re very concerned about getting Dengue again. They say a second time is far worse and will usually land you in the hospital. So, we stay on top of the DEET (Off spray) and keep the house closed up. It’s hard because you can’t go outside as much as you’d like.
Getting past the Dengue, things are settling down around here. We’re getting into the school routine and the boys are both doing o.k. Nicky’s school just makes me laugh at how unbelievably academic it is. His “academics” are far more intense than Ben’s are! The Singaporeans are very academic and it starts in pre-school. For example, Nicky’s class constructed little barns the other day. After the kids painted and decorated their barns, the teachers attached a typed out description of a barn to each child’s project. The first line read: “A barn is an agricultural building used for storage and as a covered workplace…” It continued for many more sentances like that. Crazy. Where Ben’s class is studying the letters of the alphabet, Nicky’s is working on “blends”! But, Nicky is holding his own. And, the teachers are so kind and caring. They make me feel like Nicky is the only kid in the whole class. It’s actually a very nice place to be.
Dave and I have been investing in furniture like crazy. As I mentioned many posts ago, IKEA went by the wayside. There is great stuff to be had around here. It’s been very nice for us to start turning this place into a home. However, the lesson learned is: if you ever have an opportunity to live overseas, take your stuff. Don’t go without it. It’s the dumbest thing. It’s so silly that we’re buying all this stuff that we already have!! I just keep telling myself: “Tahoe House. We’ll put it in the Tahoe house when we go home!” (heh, heh – Dave doesn’t read this that much 🙂 ). We currently own 3 (THREE!) dining room tables and our house in Los Gatos can only fit 1!! It’s silly! We’re about the only people we know who did NOT bring a house full of stuff. Everyone else has come from companies that are absolute experts on moving people around the globe. In our case, Dave’s firm has not done this quite as much as, say, my neighbors who work for Caterpiller or friends who work for Exxon.
The people you meet around here are really astounding to me. I have met so many families that are just making a career out of living overseas. There are people here who have been doing this for years. Singapore might be their third or fourth country. Lots and lots of people have been thru Dubai. Lots from Australia. Some from Malaysia who just RAVE about Singapore in comparison. It’s truly amazing how transient folks are o.k. being. I still pine for Newtown, Connecticut. I don’t know how these folks do it.
I had my first real day with both boys being at school at the same time. If I had been in Los Gatos and this moment had finally come, I probably would have wrecked it by running some errands (Target, Trader Joes) and then cleaned up the house. I’m not sure what in the world I will do with myself as this “free” time adds up. But, today, I wandered thru the local market near our house. There is absolutely nothing of interest in there for the boys so I was really glad for this opportunity. These local markets are under the high rise developments (government funded housing). The shopping just goes on and on under the apartments. You can wander for blocks and see every conceivable consumer good from live shrimp to bras to washing machines to Indian spice shops to the “Tidbit” shop. It’s unreal. I did shop a little at the “grocery”. You have to move sideways to get thru the aisles. And, where as in the US the first part of the grocery is the fresh produce, here it’s the fresh fish. And, those fish are still moving. If I can find someone to remove the heads, I will eventually buy some shrimp. Anyway, it was fun to explore.
Here’s a copy of an email from the community Yahoo group with an update on the Dengue situation in our neighborhood. She mentions “red dots” which are posted on the government site that tracks the number of cases in our neighborhood. I put this email here just to give you all a flavor of the situation:
“Well, two days ago it looked like the red dots marking the dengue hotspots in our area of the Woodlands were getting smaller and not so many, and moving north. I was hoping for an “all clear” map for us in a day or two…