Mar 28, 2005 at 16:12 o\clock


by: henry

Surfing the net, I chanced upon the web site blogspot.com. At the initial stage, I did not know what blogging was all about. Anyway, I registered as a member, not knowing what to post...lest the response. Later, I came to know about Blogigo. Comparing the two, I found that Blogigo have features which were more to my needs. Ever since the begining of this year, I have been posting articles on blogigo alone.

I would like to thanks my fellow bloggers and friends for visting my weblog. All of you were the reasons why my thoughts were kept alive.

And of course, thanks to Blogigo.

Thank you all !


Mar 23, 2005 at 15:24 o\clock


by: henry

All parents care for their children educations. I am no exceptional but with a difference. I would also like them to excel in their studies, excel in their careers and excel in their roles as both spouses and parents.

As far as I am concerned, education is only a part of our lives. A good educational background does not necessarily be interpreted into a good career path or a good family life. Likewise, lower educated person does not means that they will end up with a poor career or a messy marriage life. It had been proven that entrepreneurs, billionaires, with not much of an eduacation, have dozens of university graduates on their payrolls. No one had proven that all successful or rich people have a happy and an intact family life.

I do not want my children to excel in their studies, excel in their careers and fail in their marriages. I would rather prefer them to be so-so in everythings. Average in their studies, average in their career and average in their marriage without big issues other than nagging over their children for being naughty rather than issues that potentially can wreck a family apart.

But, if they can excel in everythings, then why not!

Mar 12, 2005 at 15:43 o\clock

My Children

by: henry

Home was never a quiet place to be , with children around. Everyday was a battle royal. Fighting over... TV channels... sofa seats...you named it, they have fought over it. When situations arised, I would have a talk with my eldest daughter. Her reactions were not favourable. “Whether I 'm in the right or wrong, I will be reprimanded” was her usual response.

When my eldest daughter was just a one-year old, raising both her hands, my wife told me that looking after a child was a difficult task. She said she surrended, one child was enough. Explained to her that in the course of a child's growing up, she would prefer to communicate and play with children of their age, they have their own world. As parents, we would grow old and would leave this world one day. As the only child, neither would she had siblings to share her joys and accomplishments nor closed ones to confide in when she was plagued with problems. I managed to convince my wife. Two years later, my second daughter was born. Six years down the road, my wife told me that she was expecting our third child, a boy, and she wanted an abortion. Told her that since we were destined to have three children, let it be. Maybe my eldest daughter still harbour the thoughts that I was out to discredit her. One day, she will realise that her siblings were here because we cared for her.

To my children, I have this to say, “I love you all.”

Mar 8, 2005 at 15:05 o\clock

My Army Days (part 5)

by: henry

My General Staff Officer

The General Staff Officer (GSO), a lieutenant, was a careered soldier. Knowing our schedule well, he would solicit us to play carrom with him for two dollar per game. Explained to him that our pay were negligible, having just enough for transport fares and cigarettes. He said "well, then we settled on two sticks of cigarettes per game". We obliged. So, there we were, playing carrom from morning till evening, almost everyday. We have look-outs, in case other officers dropped-by.

The Manpower Officer (MPO), a second-lieutenant, was not happy with what was going on in the office. He summoned me to his office, asking for an explanation. Told him that we acted on instructions from the GSO. He instructed me to inform the GSO to stop all those nonsense. For the next week or so, we avoided the GSO, pretending to be busy so as to cool down the MPO a bit. We kept him in the dark. After that, we started all over again. The MPO gave up.

The GSO was a compulsive gambler. He would gamble on everythings and with anythings. When we were required to do guard duty, patrolling the camp at night with him as the duty officer, he would solicit some guards to have a game of poker. Whenever someone was on leave, he would call him up, arranging for some card games. All of us would pop into his car, telling the military police on duty at the gate that we were paying a visit to someone who had been hospitalised. In the long run, it aroused the suspicious of the military police, asking more in-depth questions but nonetheless,  we were given the benefit of doubts.

Under military laws, whenever we were reprimanded by officers, we could answer with either "yes, Sir" or "no, Sir". Other than that would be considered as talking back or argued and we could ended up with 40 days of detention, handed down by the officer concerned without having to be court-marshalled. Our GSO was totally different from others. We poked funs on him, addressing him with all sorts of funny names instead of 'Sir'. He just laughed it off. Sitting face to face with each other, I would kick the shin of his leg with my army boots, he did likewise. It went on and on, in the end we started to wrestle each other physically. From the Defence Ministry's point of view, with these kind of behaviour, he should not had been commissioned as an officer in the first place but to us, he was the 'darling' officer of the camp. He blended well with us.

Later, he was transffered to other camps. The last camp attached was on an island, away from the mainland. Handphone was not available at that time. To call mainland, there were coinaphones. As the officer-in-charge, he possessed the keys to all these coinaphones. He collected the money without reporting. He was placed under camp arrest and because his in-law was a senior officer, he was discharged from the army with a bad record.

I met up with him years later. Told me, his son had grown up and his wife divorced him years ago. As a university graduate, he was not able to secure a good job because of his past wrongdoings. I felt sorry for him but at least I could still see the don't-worry-be-happy kind of attitude in him. 

Good luck, Sir!


Mar 4, 2005 at 16:40 o\clock

My Army Days (part 4)

by: henry

Pay Day

Trainings for volunteers were held ... 1) twice weekly on the nights of weekdays 2) one weekend per month and 3) in-camp training for 10 to 14 days once a year.As volunteers, attendance were not compulsory, unlike the national servicemen whereby they would be charged with AWOL (absence without leave) for not turning up. It was on a pay-as-you-attend basis.

We took turns staying behind during their trainings, making sure that they did a proper book-in and book-out on the attendance books. At the end of the month, their attendances would be consolidated and typed onto official pay sheets. At that time, computer was unheard of. Painstakingly, I  would type their names, ranks, date of attendance ... etc over and over again every month on an old typewriter. For someone who was not trained as an admin clerk, typing with just four fingers was really a torture. For calculator, keyed in the numbers, pulled down the handle by the side and the numbers would be printed on the paper, only to realise that the roll of paper was at its end. After everything was finalized, the pay sheets were submitted to the camp pay-master.

Pay day was held on the first week of the month. Money will be issued to the officer-in-charge of that platoon to be distributed out. Not everyone turned up on that day. After dismissal, we need to stay back, did some additions and subtractions, filling up forms and unclaimed money to be returned to pay-master the following day.

So, as a pay clerk, I was busy only at the begining and at the end of each month. For the next 2 weeks, I would have practically nothing to do.