I had a pretty interesting day.
In the afternoon, I went out with students from the Performing Arts (PA) groups in my school to watch a concert organized by the East-Zone school cluster for the Performing Arts. PA groups from the various schools which achieved the Distinction award at the recent SYF Arts Presentations danced and sang their hearts out on stage for us. My school’s Indian Dance group was also performing there, so, we were pretty much there to support them too. Pity they, the organisers, did not put out programme booklets for us, not even a leaflet or something, so that we would know which schools were represented and that kind of thing. Perhaps, it was the budget contraints?
Anyway, I really liked the Ethnic Fusion Dance put on by Damai Sec. It basically told the struggles faced by villagers in their community. The dance itself was, to my eyes, flawless and perfect in synchronisation. The students did not seem to miss a milisecond of a beat while executing their moves. The entire dance was a bit nightmarish, especially with the red lighting effects, but then again, what would one expect from life’s struggles? And then, to top it all off, the last monosyllabic shout from the dancers before the curtain fell gave the sense of finality and resignation. That was the only performance item which really impacted me.
Another PA group that affected me was KC’s Choir. It was more of a personal moment for me. I admit here, I am a proud alumni member of Katong Convent and her Choir, where I spent all four years of my secondary school education in. The year when I graduated, it was our second time participating in the SYFs, when we achieved a Silver. Fast forward ten-odd years, it was a bittersweet feeling seeing and hearing them on stage. Sure, they finally got the Gold/Distinction award for at least the two SYFs. Good for them, I say! But the feeling was like meeting an old flame unexpectedly – like a love-hate, happy-to-see-you but awkward feeling. Maybe I felt jealous; jealous that my batch did not achieve what the current batch achieved. Maybe. Just maybe.
I met my colleague there. She was, in my opinion, unjustly transferred out of this current school to another. Anyway, meeting her again made me feel how much I missed her in the staffroom. She was a true loss to the English Department and to the Drama Club. I missed her smile, her witty comments, how she made people laugh due to her comments and remarks, and even the way she said and did things. A true Drama teacher in all sense. As she is a loss to us here, she is now an asset to the other school. A reminder to us that we must always count our blessings no matter what, and those blessings include the people we have around us.
As I had watched my school’s Indian Dance performed before, I felt a little let down watching them again on stage. It was as if something was missing in their performance. I could not really put my finger on it but I suspected it was their energy level and synchronisation. It was a bit messy. Sad, but what was done was done. We could not turn back the clock.
At the end of the entire concert, I have to say that even though it was only eight performances, the Performing Arts here among the East-Zone schools remain steady as there was a standard of quality present in each work. This leads me on to think, what more can be done to raise the bar and yet, also involve the other students in Performing Arts?
In the evening, I went out with my bestfriend. The highlight: drinks at Insomnia at CHIJMES (pronounced as Chimes). Lol!
We had a light dinner at Raffles City Shopping Centre, which is just across the road from CHIJMES. I knew the place, the shopping centre, would be busy during dinner time, so I thought Bestfriend would be there first. Unfortunately, nope. I was there first. HA! So, I did the honours of finding us a place to chomp at. I first stopped at a restauant called Tiong Bahru Pau and considered the options on the menu. They had a lot of breads and pau, and curries, which after much consideration, I decided against it as having beer after curry would cause a lot of gas in the tummy. Not good. So, after making a complete round of the eating places available, I finally spied a table at this Hong Kong eating place where they have both main meals like noodles and rice dishes, and desserts. Bestfriend arrived some minutes after I texted her (the signal was horrible down in that place!) and I could not help comparing our dressing that night. I was too casual. I was dressed in a plain blue tee with grey 3/4 capri and a comfy pair of matching blue-white slip-ons while she was in a all-black mini dress, with thick black eyeliner, no less, and black flats. Yup. I was too casual. But I did not, should not, have to worry as there were guys at the club/pub who were even more casual than me; tee and berms. Woah. I should not have bothered. Or, maybe they were guys. Oh well.
Insomnia has this “offer” of free flow of drinks from 9pm-11pm every Wednesday, at a price of $20. The queue for it normally starts at 8:30pm, or so my Bestie informed me. However, when we got there, there was not much of a queue at that time, so we joined the very short queue forming at about 8:45pm. Before that, we had a little tour of the historic CHIJMES on our own. In days long past, CHIJMES was the building and school ran by the Order of the Infant Jesus Sisters, who were mainly French Roman-Catholic missionaries. It is still fondly known as Town Convent as it is situated in the Civic Distric, or “Town area”, and it was the only Convent school there, other than St. Anthony’s Girls down the road. In the 1990s, this iconic and beloved building was accquired by the government and sold to a commercial developer. The entire compound had been restored and renovated, and leased out to F&B outlets. (For more information on the place, please Google-search or Wiki it.) I was bemoaning to my Bestie the sad state it is now in i.e. the entire place is commercialised. Why could they not made it into an art gallery or something along those lines? Sigh… We now live in a world where money matters.
We got in at 9:00pm, handed over our $20 cash, showed our ID, got stamped on our arm with some invisible ink, you know the type that can be only seen under UV light, went to the bar for our drinks, and sat at a side, waiting for the band to start. It was quite a crowd out there, and there were people who really dressed up as if they were there to party all night or else hook some drunk guys. Yeah. There were that kind of people.
It was about 10 odd that things started to get livelier. By then, we two had finished two bottles each. We did not want to get wasted as we still had to work the next day. The band was pretty alright. I felt there was a touch missing in the singers’ voices. Probably they forgot to put their soul into their singing. Overall, the music was good. They sure know how to pick their songs. They had an awesome lead guitarist and their drummer could also sing. Cool! And he was not bad looking. By 11, I was already yawning. LOL! I had a feeling my dear Bestie was put off by my party-pooper behaviour. Oops! HAHA! We lost ourselves to the music, dancing in our corner after we had finished the third bottle. Most patrons were foreigners, and there were very few locals. If I was not so rushed, I would had gladly stayed on to observe more but the fact that my physical self was slowly ceding to the Z monster forced me to leave at 11:45pm.
Would I go back there again? Hmmm… Maybe some weeks later.
That very much ended my day. Tired but happy. Glad to spend time with my best friend and talk about our week and things happening in our lives.